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Tongue Buckler - Imperial Red Ale - Ballast Point Brewing Company

Not Rated.
Tongue Buckler - Imperial Red AleTongue Buckler - Imperial Red Ale

Displayed for educational use only; do not reuse.
very good

682 Ratings
no score

(send 'em beer!)
Ratings: 682
Reviews: 202
rAvg: 3.9
pDev: 12.05%
Wants: 65
Gots: 33 | FT: 1
Brewed by:
Ballast Point Brewing Company visit their website
California, United States

Style | ABV
American Amber / Red Ale |  10.00% ABV

Availability: Rotating

Notes/Commercial Description:
No notes at this time.

(Beer added by: xlperro on 11-25-2002)
Beer: Ratings & Reviews
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Ratings: 682 | Reviews: 202 | Display Reviews Only:
Photo of ngeunit1
4.33/5  rDev +11%
look: 4 | smell: 4 | taste: 4.5 | feel: 4 | overall: 4.5

A - Pours a fairly clear red with a bit of orange mixed in with a finger of frothy tannish head. The head fades down at a normal pace leaving behind some nice lacing.

S - Aroma is full of grapefruit, pineapple, citrus, and pine hops with sweet caramel malts and a bit of dark fruit and booze.

T - Starts off with lots of grapefruit, pineapple, orange, and other citrus hops and bitterness with some sweet caramel malts. Through the middle, the pine hops come through with even more bitterness and a touch of dark fruits. The finish is a mix of grapefruit, citrus, and pine hops with some bitterness, some caramel malts, and some booze.

M - Medium-plus bodied with moderate carbonation. Feels smooth and a bit resiny with a dry and bitter finish.

D - Very drinkable. Nice big hoppy Imperial Red. Good strong hop profile and bitterness throughout with enough malt flavor to balance things out a bit.

ngeunit1, Aug 08, 2012
Photo of AApparel
3.75/5  rDev -3.8%

AApparel, Aug 06, 2012
Photo of jurbanik
4.25/5  rDev +9%

jurbanik, Jul 31, 2012
Photo of jzeilinger
4.23/5  rDev +8.5%
look: 4 | smell: 3.5 | taste: 4.5 | feel: 4 | overall: 4.5

Thanks to Millerbuffoon for this one.

A - Pours a moderately dark ruby red color with a one fingered head that dies off fairly quick and leaves a light layer of foam and a thick lacing ring. Swirl the glass and the foam sticks like cotton candy.

S - Lemon, grapefruit, some pine and toffee caramel malt on the underside.

T - This one doesn't fall into that same malty red ale category that I so often experience with this style. Toasted caramel toffee malt base is there, but the hops rule here. Pine, some fruit bitterness, very light grassy bitterness, and a touch of dark fruit sweetness. There's an alcohol effervesence that's not overbearing and not boozy.

M - Heavy medium body (especially heavy for the style compared to other beers), slick and glides over the tongue on the way down with not much carbonation "pricklies" and a little sticky on the lips.

O - I'm not a fan of red ales and this one is one of the best ones I've experienced since Stone's 13th Anniversary. It's an assertive red ale with some really interesting blends of dark fruit and citrus without a predominant caramel/toffee malt presence which takes a backseat in this particular beer. I'd like another one, please. (!!)

jzeilinger, Jul 30, 2012
Photo of lacqueredmouse
3.98/5  rDev +2.1%
look: 4.5 | smell: 4.5 | taste: 4 | feel: 3.5 | overall: 3.5

Purchased from K&L Wine Merchants in Redwood City, CA. Shared with @LaitueGonflable and @tobeerornottobe in Sydney.

Pours a gorgeously clear, genuinely red hue, with a fine, bubbly crackly head of creamy beige. Lacing is fine and patchy. Body has some very decent weight behind it, but maintains a fluidity. Nice stuff; I really love the colour.

Nose is clean, hoppy and spicy, with pink grapefruit pith and zesty lemon dominant, along with a hint of cinnamon and a grassy, almost herbal edge. White pepper comes through as well, adding to the spritzy, spicy, sharp characters. Great stuff: it could use a bit more malt basis, but otherwise, it's nigh-on perfect for the style.

Taste is surprisingly light, but not unpleasant. Very mild entry gives way to a pronounced but restrained bitterness laced with more peppery characters, and a grassy vegetative note. More lemon and grapefruit rule the ending, leaving it feeling a little acidic on the finish. Feel is certainly lighter than I expected, and a little disappointingly so, especially given the weight of the beer, and the appearance of gravity to it.

Overall, it let itself down somewhat. This beer looks great, and smells great, and I expected something great when I put my lips to the glass. Unfortunately, even though it was good, this meant that it didn't deliver on its promises: it should have been magnificent.

lacqueredmouse, Jul 28, 2012
Photo of BeerBucks
4/5  rDev +2.6%

BeerBucks, Jul 28, 2012
Photo of WDJersey
3.25/5  rDev -16.7%

WDJersey, Jul 26, 2012
Photo of Viciousknishs
3.98/5  rDev +2.1%
look: 3.5 | smell: 4 | taste: 4 | feel: 4 | overall: 4

A- pours a murky garnet colored red with a finger of off white head. Solid head retention with a bit of lacing.

S- more malt forward in the nose with dried cherry, raisin and toffee notes. Toasty characteristics in the middle with a leafy hops on the finish.

T- big malts and hops. Dark caramel and toffee with notes of dried cherry and raisin. Big hop character with leafy grassy notes. Balancing bitterness with a lingering spicy hop and toffee cherry flavor on the finish,

MF- rich smooth mouthfeel with a full round body.

D- ABV is masterfully hidden. Great drinkability.

Overall a very good imperial red.

Viciousknishs, Jul 24, 2012
Photo of pepelemofo
3.75/5  rDev -3.8%

pepelemofo, Jul 24, 2012
Photo of OBeerMeGreatOne
3.7/5  rDev -5.1%
look: 4 | smell: 3 | taste: 4 | feel: 4 | overall: 3.5

Pours out a murky red. There is a pretty decent head considering the ABV. It leaves small islands of lace on the glass, but not much.

The smell is malt heavy, with a bit of mineral in the back. Not much hop presence.

Caramel, fresh cut grass and citrus kick you in the mouth at the start of the taste. It mellows in the middle with a slightly nutty flavor. Goes down well for 10%.

Glad to have tried it. Not a bad double red, but not as interesting as I would have hoped.

OBeerMeGreatOne, Jul 23, 2012
Photo of ralphw56
4.25/5  rDev +9%

ralphw56, Jul 22, 2012
Photo of kenpo23
3.25/5  rDev -16.7%

kenpo23, Jul 22, 2012
Photo of takIANbacksunday
3.75/5  rDev -3.8%

takIANbacksunday, Jul 20, 2012
Photo of GeoffreyM
3.75/5  rDev -3.8%

GeoffreyM, Jul 19, 2012
Photo of Brentnjen
4/5  rDev +2.6%

Brentnjen, Jul 18, 2012
Photo of mdfb79
4/5  rDev +2.6%
look: 4 | smell: 4 | taste: 4 | feel: 4 | overall: 4

From 07/16/12 notes. Big thanks to Nugganooch for sending me this, never had it. 22 oz. bottle into my Bell's tulip.

a - Pours a murky, deep reddish brown color with one finger of fluffy off white head and moderate carbonation evident. Light frothy lacing left on the glass.

s - Smells of citrus hops, caramel malts, toasted malts, fruity malts, dark fruits, sweet bready malts. Pretty nice; a lot of red ale characteristics infused with some citrus hops up front, though they aren't overwhelming.

t - Tastes of more citrus hops, caramel malts, fruity malts, sweet dark fruits, toasted malts, burnt malts. Taste has more hops and some light to medium bitterness.

m - Medium body and moderate carbonation, with some moderate bitterness.

o - Overall I think this was a pretty good hoppy red ale. Nice citrus hops up front in the nose and more in the taste. Light bitterness but not too bad; would like to have it again.

mdfb79, Jul 17, 2012
Photo of socon67
3.88/5  rDev -0.5%
look: 3.5 | smell: 4.5 | taste: 4 | feel: 3 | overall: 3.5

A - Maroon\amber color. Cloying foam laces the glass.

S - Best feature of this beer. Smell of fresh english malt, caramel, and wood, combines with oily scent of hops. Just impressive.

T - Hearty malt flavor, with notes of caramel. Behind that is a slight bitter bite. There is a subdued boozy burn at the finsih.

M - Feels heavy, and the robust styles lead to this being a bit overwhelming. Surprisingly it went very well with dinner. So it can compliment food though I'd never session this.

O - A great amber for folks who want a very robust beer. Liked some things about it but not everything.

socon67, Jul 12, 2012
Photo of HarleyCorps
3.5/5  rDev -10.3%

HarleyCorps, Jul 12, 2012
Photo of rolltide8425
3.75/5  rDev -3.8%

rolltide8425, Jul 11, 2012
Photo of kennethkearns
4.25/5  rDev +9%

kennethkearns, Jul 10, 2012
Photo of MickeyHops
4/5  rDev +2.6%

MickeyHops, Jul 09, 2012
Photo of jordanmckell
4.25/5  rDev +9%

jordanmckell, Jul 06, 2012
Photo of Popp24
4/5  rDev +2.6%

Popp24, Jul 05, 2012
Photo of Drinkerofales
4.03/5  rDev +3.3%
look: 4.5 | smell: 4 | taste: 4 | feel: 4 | overall: 4

A huge dark tan head forms above a clear reddish amber, with golden coppery highlights, leaving tons of sticky lacing.

Smells of caramelly toasted malts, pungent piney hops, the two aromas in balance.

The taste flip flops in strength between bitter piney hops, tangy toasted malts and it lingers.

Texture starts out smooth, but as the name implies, finishes kind of rough, with a lot of bite. It makes my tongue feel like sand paper. Full bodied, and almost viscous, the beer doesn't feel like 10%.

Strange that it lives so well up it's name, and has some great flavors.


Drinkerofales, Jul 04, 2012
Photo of donkeyrunner
4.5/5  rDev +15.4%
look: 4.5 | smell: 4.5 | taste: 4.5 | feel: 4.5 | overall: 4.5

Colorwise, a deep ruby red to an amber fade. Thick ecru head is dense enough to survive the trip down to the bottom of my glass. Sparse lacing driblets.

Aroma is intensely juicy peach candy and citrus. Lots of sugar malt sweetness as well. Smells gooey?

Gooey brown sugar and sugar coated raisin malt is almost intense enough to keep pace with the citrus hop onslaught. Sharp pine. Not as bitter as I had expected which is good...because I expected too many IBUs. Dry and bitter fade which helps wipe my palette of the initial sugar malt.

A fine big ass hoppy amber, up there with the best of the style. This is my favorite style BTW.

donkeyrunner, Jul 04, 2012
Tongue Buckler - Imperial Red Ale from Ballast Point Brewing Company
88 out of 100 based on 682 ratings.