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Big Eye IPA - Ballast Point Brewing Company

Not Rated.
Big Eye IPABig Eye IPA

Educational use only; do not reuse.

3,489 Ratings

(view ratings)
Ratings: 3,489
Reviews: 1,017
rAvg: 4.06
pDev: 9.85%
Wants: 145
Gots: 498 | FT: 3
Brewed by:
Ballast Point Brewing Company visit their website
California, United States

Style | ABV
American IPA |  7.00% ABV

Availability: Year-round

Notes & Commercial Description:
Beer added by: BeerAdvocate on 12-22-2000

No notes at this time.
Beer: Ratings & Reviews
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Ratings: 3,489 | Reviews: 1,017 | Display Reviews Only:
Photo of westcoastbeerlvr
3.25/5  rDev -20%

Photo of funkel81
4.5/5  rDev +10.8%

Photo of mater
4/5  rDev -1.5%

Photo of BeerFiend2002
4.42/5  rDev +8.9%
look: 4 | smell: 4.5 | taste: 4.5 | feel: 4 | overall: 4.5

Poured into draft glass

Amber-orange, almost flame-colored body with a frothy 3 finger off-white head. Nice head retention.

Smells like a big bowl of oranges, with floral, pine and grapefruit notes as well.

Bitter. The Columbus hops give it a strong kick. The centennials usher in the grapefruit and orange. A sweet malt also comes in there to balance out the bitterness. Finishes dry with a lingering bitterness. Very pleasant.

Medium-bodied brew with a smooth, but not watery mouthfeel. Very drinkable.

I really like this one a lot. I've heard all the hype about the Sculpin and it deserves all the hype it gets, but this one is a very worthy beer itself. Ballast Point produces winners and this is no exception. Another fine West Coast IPA that I have had the pleasure of enjoying.

Photo of sweethome
4.08/5  rDev +0.5%
look: 4.5 | smell: 4 | taste: 4 | feel: 4.5 | overall: 4

Pours deep orange/amber color. Very slight, thin head. It carries on and suits the appearance quite well. Nose flows out well - floral, fresh hop cones.

Smooth, yet full mouthfeel. The maltiness has carmel and ripe fruit. Rather full maltiness is balanced well by the aggressive bittering hops. Bitterness builds out on the palate to leave a nice smacking bite.

Well crafted and flavorful - meets definition of San Diego IPA, but has a sense of balance that provides a pleasing sipper.

Photo of Murrhey
4.07/5  rDev +0.2%
look: 3.5 | smell: 4 | taste: 4 | feel: 5 | overall: 4

12 oz bottle poured in a pint glass

A- Very thin head, with little retention. Some watery carbonation, but that's fine for what this beer is. Murky orange-brown coloration.

S- Hoppy and citrusy. Not a ton of scents I'm picking up in this, but orange is one of them.

T- Bitter hoppyness paired with a sweeter finish that goes with the citrus smell I picked up earlier. Lingers bitterly on the tongue.

M- Full bodied, well carbonated.

O- Great IPA. Second beer I've tried from Ballast Point and I've enjoyed both mightily.

Photo of match1112
4.42/5  rDev +8.9%
look: 4 | smell: 4.5 | taste: 4.5 | feel: 4 | overall: 4.5

poures a bright golden copper body with a two finger off white head that slowly fades down to a frothy cap while leaving a good amount of lacing. smell is sweet malts, big citrus hops. taste is citrus hops with a very well balanced malt backbone to carry thru start to finish. mouthfeel starts out sticky but fades to a dry ever so slightly bitter finish. has good carbonation also. overall i'm very pleased with this beer. my only complaint is that i wish the head didnt fade so fast.

Photo of Knapp85
3.5/5  rDev -13.8%
look: 3.5 | smell: 3.5 | taste: 3.5 | feel: 3.5 | overall: 3.5

Poured out as a light hazy yellow color with a creamy white colored head on top. The lacing wasn't too bad but could have been a little better I thought. The smell of the hops came through pretty well but were a bit muted I think. The taste wasn't too bad. The hops were softer than expected but I feel that this happens to most IPA's from a cask. The mouthfeel was soft and had a light creaminess to it. Overall this beer was pretty good, I have a feeling that it would be better on regular draft.

Photo of BigPlay1824
3.38/5  rDev -16.7%
look: 4 | smell: 3.5 | taste: 3 | feel: 4 | overall: 3.5

Enjoyed in a pint glass

A: pours a hazy nice orange/honey color with a finger of frothy large bubbled head that is just barely off white and lingers a bit, leaves a small bit of lacing
S: resinous grapefruit hops and, i know this is an odd thing to smell but a high school locker room (sweat and stank) somehow not in a bad way
T: begins with a taste kind of like a whiskey barrel that's a bit off, moves into the nice citrus hops and then finishes with a taste like gym socks, wish i could say this was in a good way but i guess its not in an overall bad way
M: medium/strong carbonation tingle then moves into a bit of bitterness and leaves the palate dry, what i come to expect from an ipa
O: a decent ipa but to be honest there are off putting notes in the taste and a slight off scent in the nose, not sure if this bottle has turned or if this is typical of this brew, overall drinkable and id call it nice enough

Photo of falloutsnow
3.71/5  rDev -8.6%
look: 4 | smell: 3.5 | taste: 3.75 | feel: 3.75 | overall: 3.75

From: Binny's, Champaign, IL
Date: Best by 6/16/2013
Glass: Tulip

Big Eye balances the caramel malt base with its aggressive hops (Cascade?) quite well, the emphasis on the caramelized malt flavors slightly dominating the others. With so many IPAs out there, this one mostly stands amongst the rest, one that I might return to if seeking a caramel-grapefruit bomb.

Pours a 2cm head of slightly off-white bubbles, mostly small in size, average length of slightly over one minute in its retention. The foam descents to a thin ring around the beer with a modest island floating atop the body. Lacing is significant, with substantial rows of intriciate patterns affixed to the interior of the glass, almost like a geologic strata. Body is a caramel-orange color, with light bringing out copper orange hues. Carbonation is visible through the slightly hazy (20-30% opaque) body,

Aromas of caramel malt with modest grapefruit and pine hop aromas. Not unpleasant at all, but fairly simplistic for a West Coast IPA.

Dominant flavors of caramel malts, grapefruit, and hop bitterness. Front of palate picks up caramel malt sweetness melded to grapefruit rind fruit esters and mild pine resin. Mid-palate continues the flavors of the front, with strong caramel malt ad grapefruit-like hop contributions, with significant hop bitterness, and lesser pine resin flavors. Back of palate tastes continued caramel malt sweetness, grapefruit and pine hop contributions, and medium-intensity hop bitterness. Lingering aftertaste of substatial hop bitterness with caramel malt and grapefruit-like flavors.

Beer is medium-bodied with carbonation of medium intensity, resulting in a mouthfeel that is quicklky fizzy, modestly foamy, and overall smooth across the palate. Closes dry, with substantial stickiness from the malt heaviness lingering across the palate.

Photo of OSUBeerStudent
3.97/5  rDev -2.2%
look: 3.5 | smell: 4 | taste: 4 | feel: 4 | overall: 4

Now that the distributor nonsense is done, nice to be able to get this in NC. Bottle.

A - Solid. Clear copper with a thin head, decent lacing. For some reason there are a lot of floaties, though, which detracts.

S - Again, solid. Smell is hops with a bit of backing sweetness.

T - Quality. Load of bitter citrus hops up front, fades to a lingering bitterness. Just a tiny smidge of alcohol when I let a bit sit on the tongue for a few seconds. Bitter bomb - this is a lot more bitter to me than the big IIPAs like Ephraim.

M - Overall good. Good level of carbonation, but the sheer bitterness makes it a bit harder to quaff.

Overall a very good American IPA. Super bitter, tons of hops. Very drinkable but not extremely complex, could see putting several of these down in a row.

Photo of tone77
3.65/5  rDev -10.1%
look: 4 | smell: 4 | taste: 3.5 | feel: 3.5 | overall: 3.5

Poured from a brown 12 oz. bottle. Has a copper color with a 1/2 inch head. Smell is big on hops, some citrus notes. Taste is also very hop heavy, a touch of citrus, considerable bitterness throughout. Feels medium bodied in the mouth and overall is a pretty good beer.

Photo of Brent
4/5  rDev -1.5%
look: 4 | smell: 4 | taste: 4 | feel: 4 | overall: 4

California brewers seem to have a knack for the American IPA, and this is no exception. Amber-gold color with a bright whiff of hops right away. Nice balance of bittering and aroma hops, with perhaps a bit less than average malt sweetness. Easy to drink despite the 7% abv. A nicely crafted beer.

Photo of jondeelee
4.42/5  rDev +8.9%
look: 4 | smell: 4.5 | taste: 4.5 | feel: 4 | overall: 4.5

Big Eye opens with a nose to make a hop lover drool: ripe, full, aromatic hop aromas of grapefruit and pine, as well as a rosewater sweetness, indicate that several boatloads' worth of ingredients and love have made their way into every bottle. Underlying the hops is a sweet brown sugar river, banked by toast and biscuit.

On the tongue, the beer begins with a bitter-sugar blast, the initial round of brown sugar sweetness taken over almost immediately by strong grapefruit, pine, and lemon zest notes from the hops, and the 85 IBUs leaving lovely tingling sensations on the tongue and soft palate. The introduction only a few seconds later of a heavy nut flavor--pecan, as well as Brazil nut--speaks of a good malt load, with some toast and biscuit flavors coming through, though in lesser amounts. By and large, however, this is an IPA, and the hops take the majority of the flavor profile, subsequent sips revealing touches of bitter grapefruit rind flavors, as well as the sweeter fruit. The aftertaste is grapefruit rind, and lingers for a long time. Mouthfeel is a silky medium, and carbonation is medium.

Overall, this is excellent IPA fare, having good balance between hops and nutty grain flavors, and having just enough bitterness to gnaw softly at the tongue while still leaving the flesh intact. Recommended.

Photo of bbb099
3.88/5  rDev -4.4%
look: 4 | smell: 3.5 | taste: 4 | feel: 4 | overall: 4

A - Slightly cloudy brown golden color with a foamy white head.

S - Odd lemon-like tart aroma accompanied with grassy hops.

T - Bitter grassy and piny hops dominate the flavors. Though I do detect a small amount of caramel malt.

M - Moderate amount of carbonation. Medium bodied.

O - Pretty good overall, though the balance leans towards more hops than I would like. I prefer the sculpin IPA over this one.

Photo of longpondbeerman
4.17/5  rDev +2.7%
look: 4 | smell: 4.5 | taste: 4 | feel: 4.5 | overall: 4

Pours a sparkling amber and tops off with a thick, creamy head. The aroma is sharp--mostly citrusy with only a hint of hops. The taste was a bit lighter than I expected, but just as sparkling in mouthfeel as it looks. The finish is heavier than first blush.

Overall a good American IPA.

Photo of Mebuzzard
4.08/5  rDev +0.5%
look: 4 | smell: 3.5 | taste: 4.5 | feel: 4 | overall: 4

After the Sculpin, this one comes up on my 'to-do' list. It's done:

Pours an orange color with gold thrown in there. Clear and clean. Just barely off-white head forms to about 2 fingers, some chunkiness. Lacing is medium sticky.

Aroma is malty. Not a malt bomb by any means, but for an IPA I expected more hops. Hops are there, more citrus than anything. Caramel is more than noticeable. Slight pine. Green pine.

Ok, there are the hops. In the flavor a tropical/citrus profile becomes clear. Tangerine and persimmon, juicy. Juicy I say. I think the caramel provides the sweetness to latch on the hop express, giving the hops more of a juice character.

The bite is quenching. A hint of pine squeezes out. A very nice IPA

Photo of RnRManifesto
4.24/5  rDev +4.4%
look: 5 | smell: 3.5 | taste: 4.5 | feel: 4 | overall: 4.5

Looks great. An amber-orange color. Aggressive pour produced an inch head with a quarter inch lingering for a while, and lacing sticking to the glass all the way down.

I was surprised by the smell. Not a lot of hops in the nose for an IPA. Smells fruity, caramel.

The hop bitterness is almost hidden entirely by the malt. I expected a lot more hop flavor from an IPA. The malt has a distinct caramel flavor with some fruity sweetness. Slight alcohol taste on the finish.

This is a great beer, and actually quite balanced. Maybe a bit too balanced for an IPA. I was expecting more hops flavor, but as I said, I think the malt masks most of the hops. It is mostly malt on the finish.

I must say I'm not sure how fresh this is. I live in PA, and this may have been sitting on the shelf for a while. I'd love to try one that I know is fresh to see if my impression changes. I definitely like this beer a lot, but I prefer their Sculpin over this. I would definitely buy this again, though.

Photo of RocPorterFanatic
3.75/5  rDev -7.6%
look: 4 | smell: 4 | taste: 3.5 | feel: 3.5 | overall: 4

A - Pours rich gold with thick creamy head. Lots of lacing adorn the side of the glass as the head subsides.

S - Lots of citrus in the nose, lemon peel, tart apple, citronella candle

T - Crisp tartness slaps you in the tastebuds. A Hint of caramel sweetness follows. Alot of orange pith on the back of the tongue, with the tart apple closing before the swallow

M - Nice refreshing carbonation, not as creamy as the head wants you to believe.

O - Great beer, the citronella candle thing is kinda confusing. It comes into play in the aroma and also in the taste. Not unpleasant. Definitely work seeking out.

Photo of bonkers
4/5  rDev -1.5%
look: 4 | smell: 4 | taste: 4 | feel: 4 | overall: 4

I picked this up in the tickers BIF, it pours a clear gold, nice sized head, good lacing. The aroma is nice, mostly citrus, hints of pine. The flavors are similar to the aroma, the finish lingers with sweet oranges. The body is medium, good carbonation. An enjoyable IPA.

Photo of srandycarter
4.18/5  rDev +3%
look: 4 | smell: 3.5 | taste: 4.5 | feel: 4 | overall: 4.5

A - Beautiful deep honey color, clear, nice sticky creamy head. Tons of lace.

S - Smell was very light. Sweet malt and hops were there, in small amounts.

T - YUM. Great blend of caramel sweetness and bittering hops to reign it in.

M - Medium body good balance and carb.

D - Oh so drinkable. Now on tap at Petco Park. Yeah!

Photo of ccrida
4.23/5  rDev +4.2%
look: 4 | smell: 3.5 | taste: 4.5 | feel: 4.5 | overall: 4.5

Bomber poured into a tall tumbler, Big Eye is dark gold with a white head that leaves scattered lace.

Smell is over-ripe fruity hops, herbal compost. Not as robust as I recall, and I even bought it from a cooler.

Taste is loaded with big hop FLAVOR (much more then the nose), light cracker malt background. The hops are overripe citrus, some spicy resin as well, a touch of ethanol, and a fairly bitter finish.

Mouthfeel is dry, but with some creamy carbonation, medium light bodied.

Drinkability is super high. I've had this a few times, and always enjoyed it, a true west-coast style IPA exactly as I like them, I'm always happy to be somewhere (besides my home state) where I can get my hands on it.

Photo of abgba121
3.3/5  rDev -18.7%
look: 3.5 | smell: 3.5 | taste: 3 | feel: 3.5 | overall: 3.5

A: pours a light amber with about a half inch of head that reduces to a very thin with coating over the brew and leaves a small trail of lace down the glass

S: sweet and citrusy on the nose

T: sweet up front followed by some fruity and citrusy notes

M: thin to medium body

O: a decent IPA, some good hops and malt usage, not completely balanced yet, needs some work.

Photo of MrKennedy
4.05/5  rDev -0.2%
look: 4 | smell: 4 | taste: 4 | feel: 4.5 | overall: 4

Bomber thanks to ADZA for the trade. Poured into a Mikkeller tulip style glass.

Pours an orange colour with a hazy appearance. Has a nice two finger head of beige foam that has a very good creamy appearance to it. Spotty lacing as the liquid reduces. The only downside is floating particles within.

Fruity aroma to start with, lot of citrus early and pine later on mixed with a little bit of grass.

Taste is pretty well all piney hop flavour. Little bit of sweet malt and caramel in there to break it up a touch.

Very drinkable, especially for 7.0% ABV. Not a tonne of late bitterness, but a nice body and consistent bitterness that helps with the drinkability.

Overall a good IPA that does not a lot wrong, bar the suspended particles. Otherwise, life in SoCal must be pretty good if you can find this easily and cheaply.

Photo of soulfly1492
3.92/5  rDev -3.4%
look: 3.5 | smell: 4 | taste: 4 | feel: 3.5 | overall: 4

Appearance: Deep gold, cloudy. Thick creamy white head dissipates rather quickly. Good lacing. Ok retention.

Smell: White grapefruit, citrus, caramel pine. Can detect some alcohol.

Taste: Grapefruit, citrus, caramel, burnt sugar.

Mouthfeel: Oily for the most part but turns to dry due to the massive dose of bitter hops. Little carbonation

Overall: Super hoppy, yet somewhat balanced. Good bit of malt presence. Wasn't expecting the sweet burnt sugar.

Note: leaves quite the spicy/bitter taste on the tongue. Lasts a long long time.

Big Eye IPA from Ballast Point Brewing Company
91 out of 100 based on 3,489 ratings.