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Grapefruit Sculpin - Ballast Point Brewing Company

Not Rated.
Grapefruit SculpinGrapefruit Sculpin

Educational use only; do not reuse.

669 Reviews

(Read More)
Reviews: 669
Hads: 4,994
Avg: 4.29
pDev: 24.48%
Wants: 488
Gots: 2,124 | FT: 32
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: arfenhouse on 01-19-2013

Our Award-winning IPA, with a citrus twist.
Our Grapefruit Sculpin is the latest take on our signature IPA. Some may say there are few ways to improve Sculpin’s unique flavor, but the tart freshness of grapefruit perfectly complements our IPA’s citrusy hop character. Grapefruit’s a winter fruit, but this easy-drinking ale tastes like summer.

The Sculpin IPA is a testament to our humble beginnings as Home Brew Mart. It showcases bright flavors and aromas of apricot, peach, mango & lemon. The lighter body also brings out the crispness of the hops. The Sculpin fish has poisonous spikes on its fins that can give a strong sting. Ironically, the meat from a Sculpin fish is considered some of the tastiest. Something that has a sting but tastes great; sounds like a Ballast Point India Pale Ale. This version of our Sculpin IPA has grapefruit added; the grapefruit flavor really enhances the citrus aroma of the hops.
Beer: Reviews & Ratings
first ← prev | 1-25 | 26-50 | 51-75  | nextlast
Reviews: 669 | Hads: 4,994
Reviews by Nugganooch:
Photo of Nugganooch
3.95/5  rDev -7.9%

On tap at the brewery – Old Grove location
Full tulip glass – 07/03/2014

A: Burnished gold look with some brassy tones and a finely conditioned clarity. Half finger width of paper-white froth forms over top and leaves some sporadic splashes and swaths of lace all the way down the glass. Looks just like the original base brew which is always nice to be gazing at.

S: Smells like Grapefruit of course! Zesty with a touch of dirty herbal pith mixed in. Some underscored mango and peachy hops with just a light suggestion of pine to it. I get some bready pale malts rising up through the fruit and hops as well. Smells like a good balance of the grapefruit here.

T: Tastes much the same with the Grapefruit front and center however not overly done so here. You get the fruit in zest with juice as well as a a bit of that pithy herbal likeness that only Grapefruit has. The base holds up a nice firm bready malt cracker which helps and delicately layered in is the mango and peach or apricot like hops with a touch of pine. Now either they backed off on the hops or some of the fruit acidity just cuts through them . Either way they seem rather toned back here which is a shame. Still very refreshing and great to crush on a hot Summer’s day. Not all that bitter and alcohol is well incorporated but still very tasty.

M: Lighter body and maybe a touch on the moderately fuller side of things. Nice creamy texture and spritzy carb bounces off the palate. Slight bitter astringency but its minor. Very dry in the finish with some nice residual action.

D: I still prefer my Sculpin neat. The grapefruit is a nice touch and they did a solid effort with the additions however you lose some of that great hoppiness that Sculpin is known for. Will be drinking a few more of these no doubt. Now to mix the Habanero with some Grapefruit!

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More User Reviews:
Photo of utopiajane
5/5  rDev +16.6%
look: 5 | smell: 5 | taste: 5 | feel: 5 | overall: 5

I happen to think it's extraordinary. I have really enjoyed every ballast point beer I have had so far and this one is out of the park. The Julian date on the bottle reads 15057. Pours very clear and orange with a bone white head of foam that held well and left handsome lacing. Nose is so authentic with grapefruit. it's heady with it, then for perfume it has the scent of fresh orange. A bit of twiggy and woody pine. It smells so fresh and tantalizing. Drinks like a an ocean breeze. All that tantalizing citrus. The orange is bright and light. The grapefruit is something wonderful. It has all the flavor of a real grapefruit but none of the pucker or bitterness of it. it's like they took all that flavor and sweetened it just enough. The malt is elusive but a touch sweet with honey and so soft that it simply cascades over your tongue. Mouthfeel approaches medium but is still wonderfully light with just enough weight from that honey malt to satisfy the palate in a very sensual way. Right before the swallow is this breezy little spritz from carbonation that is so whimsical it made me laugh out loud. It's as though you got a little sea mist at the back of your throat. Perfect crisp finish that brings a little bit of the fruit rind a touch of bitterness to end this amazing beer. It's so good.

 1,331 characters

Photo of Todd
4.46/5  rDev +4%
look: 4.5 | smell: 4.75 | taste: 4.5 | feel: 4 | overall: 4.25

Grapefruity, Hoppy, Zesty, Refreshing

Amber with a thick, creamy, sticky head. Fragrant and floral with grapefruit and stone fruits in the nose, this IPA has big, juicy, zesty, grapefruit character with bitter, piney, grassy and floral hop flavors that drive into the finish. Soft bready malts provide just enough sweetness to balance things out. It ends with a dry, rindy and resiny finish. I love this trend of adding citrus to IPAs, and even more so when it works. Take Grapefruit Sculpin for example, a bright and refreshing twist on a world-class beer.

As reviewed in BeerAdvocate magazine #103 (August 2015).

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Photo of MisterGone
3/5  rDev -30.1%

Hmmm. Wish I knew what was going on here. I have tried Sculpin a few times now and get little of what others are talking about. It seems too light bodied and subtle for me in comparison to like-style beers like Stone and Lagunitas. So, perhaps the citrus bite of grapefruit will enhance it? It did, but not enough. Still too light bodied for my personal preference. I really enjoy so many of Ballast Point's offerings that this baffles me. Chalk it up to individual palate issues...

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Photo of docoman
4.19/5  rDev -2.3%
look: 4.5 | smell: 4.25 | taste: 4 | feel: 4.5 | overall: 4.25

Exactly what I expected from a grapefruit IPA... has nice ruby pink color, grapefruit smell and taste... only downside was lost some of the "bite" that I enjoy from regular sculpin.

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Photo of jackb112
4.99/5  rDev +16.3%
look: 4.75 | smell: 5 | taste: 5 | feel: 5 | overall: 5

A masterpiece. I wept while drinking it.

40 characters

Photo of Whitley
5/5  rDev +16.6%
look: 5 | smell: 5 | taste: 5 | feel: 5 | overall: 5

Are you kidding me ? This beer is unbelievable. As in unbelievably, ridiculously fantastic !!! If you love IPA's and the more citrusy the better then you will have hit the jackpot with this one. Thank you so much Ballast Point !

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Photo of CJNAPS
4.89/5  rDev +14%
look: 4.75 | smell: 5 | taste: 5 | feel: 4.5 | overall: 4.75

The Grapefruit taste stood out but was balanced perfect.

This was a really good beer, One I will drink over and over again.

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Photo of Phaedrus
4.49/5  rDev +4.7%
look: 4.25 | smell: 4.5 | taste: 4.5 | feel: 4.5 | overall: 4.5

I really enjoy this IPA... just the right amount of grapefruit flavor and bitterness. I prefer this to the regular sculpin

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Photo of glass_house
4.54/5  rDev +5.8%
look: 4.5 | smell: 4.75 | taste: 4.5 | feel: 4.25 | overall: 4.5

I love fresh Sculpin and I love fresh grapefruit. Thus, fresh Grapefruit Sculpin is a little piece of fermented heaven. I can see how those who don't necesarrily dig grapefruit might not be so impressed. But I do, and I am. What a pleasant surprise to find a 2-week-old 6-pack of cans for $14.99. Still slightly more than I prefer to pay for six beers, but reasonable for a world-class IPA, so I'll be buying more of this while I can.

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Photo of hophugger
4.55/5  rDev +6.1%
look: 4 | smell: 4.5 | taste: 4.75 | feel: 4.25 | overall: 4.5

Nice golden-orange color with awesome head and lacing that clings and holds on for dear life. Had this last night and I was not disappointed. This beer is so grapefruit forward that it is insane. The malt, hops and citrus come together so well, one of my all-time favorites !!

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Photo of metter98
4.13/5  rDev -3.7%
look: 4 | smell: 4 | taste: 4.25 | feel: 3.75 | overall: 4.25

A: The beer is clear yellowish amber in color and has a light amount of visible carbonation. It poured with a quarter finger high white head that died down, consistently leaving a thin layer of bubbles on the surface, a collar around the edge of the glass, and some lacing down the sides of the glass.
S: Moderate aromas of fresh grapefruit are present in the nose.
T: Similar to the smell, the taste has flavors of grapefruit, but with little in the way of associated acidity. There is a light to moderate amount of bitterness.
M: It feels a bit shy of being medium-bodied on the palate and has a moderate amount of carbonation.
O: This beer is very drinkable and goes down easily. It has nice aromas and flavors of grapefruit, but doesn't really taste that much like an IPA and the grapefruit seems to overwhelm the underlying beer. It seems a lot lighter than a 7% abv beer, almost to the sense that it could be sessionable.

Serving type: bottle

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Photo of milwaukee512
4.81/5  rDev +12.1%
look: 4.75 | smell: 5 | taste: 4.75 | feel: 4.75 | overall: 4.75

Why mess with what is arguably the king of IPAs? That's what I initially thought, but I'm glad I tried it. Grapefruit Sculpin looks great, smells incredible, and tastes nearly as good. The grapefruit slightly lightens up the taste and feel, but retains the qualities that sets Sculpin apart in a crowded field of IPAs. Think of it as a summer version of a full-bodied IPA. Too bad Ballast Point costs nearly TWICE! as much as every other craft beer available in WI.

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Photo of hydrate
4.5/5  rDev +4.9%
look: 4.5 | smell: 4.5 | taste: 4.5 | feel: 4.5 | overall: 4.5

This is like a summer beer with teeth. The grapefruit flavor makes it refreshing. But it's not sweet. The slightly sour flavor of the grapefruit is a perfect match for the light dryness of the IPA.

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Photo of dbrauneis
4.27/5  rDev -0.5%
look: 4 | smell: 4.5 | taste: 4.25 | feel: 4 | overall: 4.25

A: Pours a crystal clear medium golden orange in color with moderate amounts of active visible carbonation and hints of amber highlights. The beer has a finger tall foamy beige head that slowly reduces to a mottled thick film covering the entire surface of the beer and a thick ring at the edges of the glass. Moderate to significant amounts of lacing are observed.

S: Strong aromas of citrus/grapefruit, slightly sweet grainy malts, and hops - citrus/grapefruit zest, citrus/grapefruit pith, and citrus/grapefruit hops.

T: Upfront there is a moderate flavor of moderately sweet grainy malts with moderate to strong flavors of grapefruit juice. That is followed by slightly stronger than moderate flavors of citrus/grapefruit zest, citrus/grapefruit pith, and citrus/grapefruit hops which impart a moderate amount of bitterness which lingers for quite a while.

M: Medium bodied with moderate amounts of carbonation. Crisp with light amounts of dryness in the finish

O: As someone that really loves a fresh Sculpin, I was surprised that I could enjoy the grapefruit Sculpin even more but aroma for this one is absolutely delicious. Alcohol is well hidden and it is easy to drink and extremely enjoyable.

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Photo of zoober911
3.7/5  rDev -13.8%
look: 4 | smell: 4 | taste: 3.5 | feel: 4 | overall: 3.5

L - At the pour it looks good. White head, good lacing. Very clear body.

S - Smell is some hops but nothing outstanding or exceptional. Some grapefruit, but grapefruit juice...not citrusy.

T - When I saw 'grapefruit,' I naturally thought Citra hop citrus. But this is much more of a 'grapefruit juice added' taste.

F - Feel is as expected with the style. Again nothing out of the ordinary or knock your socks off.

O - There's a lot of hype for this, riding on the coat tails of Sculpin. This doesn't live up to it's predecessor. It was free, if I had an option between two free beers...I wouldn't take this.

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Photo of brettski66
5/5  rDev +16.6%
look: 5 | smell: 5 | taste: 5 | feel: 5 | overall: 5

One of the best beers out there. Glad it comes in cans. Only downside, which doesn't affect score, is the fact that it takes a bit of time to get to the East Coast. There's nothing like wicked fresh sculpin!

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Photo of dar482
4.64/5  rDev +8.2%
look: 4.5 | smell: 4.75 | taste: 4.5 | feel: 4.75 | overall: 4.75

The beer comes in a dark amber orange.

The aroma explodes out of the glass of grapefruit juice. Ruby red grapefruit. Barely anything else.

The flavor is less aggressive with the grapefruit in the front. Pink grapefruit candy, a bit of grapefruit flesh, and the fruit's bitterness. A touch of malt in the middle and caramel sweetness. On the back, decent pine bitterness and grapefruit peel flavor.

A wonderful beer that really does elevate and compliment the base.

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Photo of ELS
4.42/5  rDev +3%
look: 4 | smell: 4.5 | taste: 4.5 | feel: 4 | overall: 4.5

After being disappointed with the regular Sculpin IPA I was wondering if maybe I bought an old bottle that wasn't fresh. I heard this is a beer that you want to drink fresh. I just recently received this Grapefruit version in a trade and I'm definitely impressed. The smell is pure ruby red grapefruit and the taste is the perfect complement of grapefruit and citrusy, piney hops. The malt backbone that seemed to be missing when I had the regular sculpin has appeared enough not to make this beer a hop bomb. I would definitely want to buy more of this beer and would like to try a regular Sculpin again to see if I was missing something.

Had regular Sculpin fresh and on tap and I definitely had an old bottle. The beer was excellent.

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Photo of vic21234
4.02/5  rDev -6.3%
look: 4.25 | smell: 3.5 | taste: 4.25 | feel: 4.25 | overall: 4

12oz can poured into a snifter. Canned on date is 04/22/15.

A- Pours a hazy orange color with a half finger of white head which hangs around awhile.

S- Citrus on the nose as expected, but not as much of a citrus punch as I was hoping for.

T- A nice tart hoppiness with plenty of citrus and grapefruit notes. Not much more to say here; tastes like regular Sculpin with grapefruit juice.

M- Light, well carbonated, refreshing, easy drinking, with a dry finish.

Nice and refreshing IPA.

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Photo of Econoceki
3.54/5  rDev -17.5%
look: 4.25 | smell: 4 | taste: 3 | feel: 3.75 | overall: 3.75

Reading the other reviews, I wonder if the bottles I've had (all from the same pack) were contaminated. I love the Sculpin and I love grapefruit in beer. That said, I struggled to finish the four bottles I had. They looked amazing, smelled like a good IPA, but tasted like someone took the sculpin and simply poured grapefruit juice in before serving. It tasted sickly sweet, with unblended flavors and I was left with the impression I'd just taken medicine. I'll have to give this another try though, based on the cult following it has.

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Photo of Pestin
3.3/5  rDev -23.1%
look: 4 | smell: 4 | taste: 3 | feel: 3 | overall: 3

Was expecting Sculpin with an added grapefruit kick. Instead its like drinking ocean spray

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Photo of mpmcguire11
4.44/5  rDev +3.5%
look: 4.25 | smell: 4.5 | taste: 4.5 | feel: 4 | overall: 4.5

This beer/brewery has altered my perception of fruity beers. I am an IPA lover and with just a hint of grapefruit this brew is refreshing in this New England heat.

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Photo of KevChiTown
4.44/5  rDev +3.5%
look: 4 | smell: 4.25 | taste: 4.5 | feel: 4.25 | overall: 4.75

First sip.. Wtf! Excellent play of grapefruit and classic west coast ipa. Amazing beer.

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Photo of scvance
4.27/5  rDev -0.5%
look: 4 | smell: 4.5 | taste: 4.25 | feel: 4 | overall: 4.25

Poured from a bottle into a pint glass.

Pours a brilliantly clear, golden, honey color. Large layer of perfectly white foam, quickly fades to a very thin layer with good cling. Smell is pure citrus, grapefruit (duh), and slight resin. Taste is very fruity and very citrusy. The bitterness is there, but it's rather mild compared to the strong grapefruit notes. Bitterness grows as the taste fades to the finish where it lingers with strong pine notes. Very smooth, medium bodied, and high carbonation.

This beer is similar to the original Sculpin, however the balance between pine and citrus has been tilted way to the favor of the citrus, which is not a bad thing. Very good IPA, will try again.

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Grapefruit Sculpin from Ballast Point Brewing Company
95 out of 100 based on 669 ratings.