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Topcutter | Bale Breaker Brewing Company

69 Reviews
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Brewed by:
Bale Breaker Brewing Company
Washington, United States | website

Style: American IPA

Alcohol by volume (ABV): 6.80%

Availability: Year-round

Notes / Commercial Description:
No notes at this time.

Added by beertunes on 05-05-2013

User Reviews
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Reviews: 69 | Ratings: 354
Photo of DoubleJ
4.13/5  rDev 0%
look: 3.5 | smell: 4.25 | taste: 4.25 | feel: 4 | overall: 4

Single 12 ounce can with an original from Washington's hop country. I like where this is headed. On to the beer:

Lightly heady on top while a toasted orange liquid with a few bits of sediment float in the body. The aroma blends the hops and malt well, bringing honey, caramel, sweet grapefruit, and vague citrus to the nose. Far from being a dry IPA where it's a hop barrage, Top Cutter adds a pleasurable sweetness that makes the hops go down a little easier. Honey and caramel at the base, a little resin, grapefruit, orange, not bitter nor overly strong.

Even at nearly three months old, Top Cutter is a pleasure. The Yakima Valley has done well to IPA yet again.

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Photo of jwc215
4.42/5  rDev +7%
look: 4.5 | smell: 4.25 | taste: 4.5 | feel: 4.25 | overall: 4.5

1 oz. can - packaged on Apr1416 stamped on bottom:

Pours hazed golden amber with a frothy lasting white head that leaves plenty of lacing.

The smell is of citrus, fresh-cut grass, some pine, herbal, peppery spicing.

The taste is of strong juicy citrus, apricot, pine with a dash of black pepper. Just enough sweet grainy malt to keep the hops juicy and the texture smooth. Aggressively hopped, but with a malt backbone to keep the bitterness pleasant. It has a floral, citric, spicy, dry finish.

It has a chewy, medium body.

A wonderful IPA. Citric/piney/spicy. Nice malt backbone.

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Photo of Glengosch
4.9/5  rDev +18.6%
look: 4.5 | smell: 5 | taste: 5 | feel: 4.75 | overall: 4.75

This is a poem in can titled, "How to make a beer that tastes as good as it smells."

Living in Washington, this is becoming a staple in local bars, grocery stores, and even gas station convenience stores.

Hope they can distribute beyond the Pacific North West so others can enjoy it too.

I've had this on tap (a jillion times) and from the can (a bazillion times).

It looks surprisingly light for how much aroma and taste comes from it. Very much on the gold side for an IPA.

Smell. Oh the smell. If you've ever brewed beer and had the pleasure of smelling northwest hops, this smells like that. Awesome!

Tastes like it smells. Like someone decided to grow a hop farm on my taste buds. This beer is much more on the citrus end of the IPA family. Slight pine hints.

Mouth feel is near perfect. It's just bitter yet very easy to drink. Overall - it's my go-to beer. What can I say?

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Photo of Stevem68
4.1/5  rDev -0.7%
look: 4.25 | smell: 4.25 | taste: 4 | feel: 4.25 | overall: 4

Pours light Amber color. Aroma is piney hops. Flavor follows the nose. Has good balance and a nice feel. A little carbonation on the finish and overall a solid beer.

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Photo of tempest
4.18/5  rDev +1.2%
look: 4 | smell: 4 | taste: 4.25 | feel: 4.25 | overall: 4.25

It's a great floral and citrus IPA, but notes of peach and apricot also pop through as well.The body is on the dry side, but it's not too thin while remaining very drinkable. I guess I'd appreciate a bigger aroma, but I'd still enjoy several cans.

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Photo of dar482
4.46/5  rDev +8%
look: 4.25 | smell: 4.5 | taste: 4.5 | feel: 4.75 | overall: 4.25

The beer comes in a clear pale amber.

The aroma offers sweet honey, bready malts, a blend of floral and grass, light pine, dank resin on the back end.

The beer hits upfront with sweet green tea, grass, floral tea, hints of soapiness, pine, hints of grapefruit peel, a candy sweetness, a light bready malt, as the beer bitters out with a balance of sweetness and resinous pine. The mouthfeel is crisp and medium minus. It drinks in between a Session IPA and IPA, or West Coast pale. The balance is exceptional for the West Coast style.

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Photo of shaneerickson
3.77/5  rDev -8.7%
look: 4 | smell: 3.25 | taste: 3.75 | feel: 3.5 | overall: 4.5

From a can in a bottle.

L - has a very nice straw yellow color. minor lacing around the glass. a really white collar of foam and very little head retention

S - a very earthy and floral smell. reminds me of wet grass and fresh plants. slight traces of DMS.

T - not too bitter for a pale ale. i get more citrus in the taste then i do the aroma. again, very earthy and floral. just a bit of either grapefruit or orange pith. aftertaste is like chewing on a rind

F - not very thick at all. has a nice thin body i would expect from a pale ale. very minor carbonation. leaves some residue on the palate

O - a very enjoyable pale ale. ironically enough it really reminds me of Half Acre Daisy Cutter. the hops are very similar, the malt base seems very similar. delicious and refreshing.

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Photo of skeeterloveshops
4.12/5  rDev -0.2%
look: 4 | smell: 3.75 | taste: 4.25 | feel: 4.25 | overall: 4.25

I acquired a few fresh cans in a trade. I had never heard of top cutter before. As I opened the can and poured into an IPA glass, I didn't get a strong aroma. I then put my nose to it, and still I barely get an aroma, kinda strange. That was the only somewhat disappointing note however,as the poor was beautiful and the taste was excellent. A great IPA and something I hope to get more of in the future.

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Photo of bfields4
4/5  rDev -3.1%
look: 4 | smell: 4.5 | taste: 3.75 | feel: 3.75 | overall: 4

Pours a lightly hazy golden copper. Tight white head laces the glass very nicely.

This beer smells like they brewed it right as the hops hit the ground. Tons of floral fresh resiny type notes. Slightly astringent even in the aroma.

The flavors fall in line with the nose with the exception of some tropical fruits. Get some apricot and light citrus. Still that floral bite.

A little sharp for my liking. Very good beer maybe a little softening and pull a little more from citrus hops.

Very in your face. If you're looking for something going all out to display the hops this beer is for you, but be warned it will rack your palate.

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Photo of gandres
4.12/5  rDev -0.2%
look: 4.25 | smell: 4.75 | taste: 3.5 | feel: 4.25 | overall: 4.5

12 ounce can poured into wine glass
Appearance: Light orange with medium head some lacing
Aroma: Big smell of hops
Taste: Can be improve to match the arroma
Mouth feel:
Overrall: Very good aroma, but lacks the matching taste of good india pale ales

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Photo of ucsbmullet
4.53/5  rDev +9.7%
look: 4.25 | smell: 4.25 | taste: 4.75 | feel: 4.5 | overall: 4.5

Hop bomb. One of the better IPA's I've bought from a grocery store. 8 days old based on canned on date on bottom of can. Hoppy, light on the malt and hoppy. Great job Bale Breaker.

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Photo of Oh_Dark_Star
4.84/5  rDev +17.2%
look: 5 | smell: 4.75 | taste: 4.75 | feel: 5 | overall: 5

Oh topcutter! The epitome of Pacific Northwest style. My first can hopped my face off and opened my eyes to what an IPA can be. I will always come back to you and you will never let me down.

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Photo of Bitter_Better
4.14/5  rDev +0.2%
look: 4.25 | smell: 4 | taste: 4.25 | feel: 3.75 | overall: 4.25

Poured rich, brassy copper from a 12 oz. can into my Double Mtn. imperial pint glass.

Head is low, slightly creamy w/ nice lacing & good carbonation.

Smell is dank pine w/ some malt sweetness (@ 5wks+ may be a bit too long to enjoy).

Taste is rather tangy w/ a sweet middle & a lingering, puckering mouthfeel that brings saliva to the tongue.

Overall, it reminds of a more bitter, prettier Two-Hearted, w/ the firm belief that 3-4 is a maximum enjoyment window. I will definitely seek it out again!

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Photo of starclassic21
4.61/5  rDev +11.6%
look: 4 | smell: 4.75 | taste: 4.75 | feel: 4.25 | overall: 4.5

Pours a filtered, orangish-amber color with a one-finger head.

Smells very floral, fresh hop resin, slightly citrusy. Very pleasant smell.

Taste follows the nose. Light malt finish, heavy hop presence without too much bitterness. Very balanced and very delicious. I absolutely love the sweet, delicate floral notes on the back end. Makes this beer extra special. A hop head's dream. My new go-to hoppy beer in WA state!

Medium to medium-light mouthfeel. Crisp and refreshing, and not too thin. The lighter mouthfeel and pleasant taste gives this IPA a sessionable feel. I can drink two or three and not be gut-bombed.

Overall, this beer is excellent. It's just a matter of time before Bale Breaker gets more renowned. It's turning into my favorite hoppy brewery in WA state.


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Photo of FickleBeast
4.23/5  rDev +2.4%
look: 4.25 | smell: 4.25 | taste: 4.25 | feel: 4 | overall: 4.25

12 oz can poured into a pint glass. Pours hazy copper with a finger of sticky foam. Aroma is full of dank hoppiness - smells like weed.

Flavor is full of earthy hoppiness with a very strong bitter finish. Nice malt backbone. Nice resiny flavor. This is a very good IPA.

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Photo of braker649er
4.01/5  rDev -2.9%
look: 3.75 | smell: 4.5 | taste: 4 | feel: 3.5 | overall: 3.75

L - predominantly clear and golden, though maybe a few bits of sediment (?)--the brewer says it is unfiltered. Thin but appropriate head.

S - this is what stood out most for me--once the can was popped the hops were loose! good, solid, fresh scent

T - well-balanced, pretty powerfully hoppy and yet not overly anything (not too piney, citrusy, grassy, floral etc.) maybe a bit of each leading to an overall impression of being enjoyable and clean

F - smooth but not distinguished

O - this stands out really for its scent and seeming freshness of hops--this felt straightforward but well-executed and likely with some deceptive complexity in terms of what went into balancing some great hops--but let the brewers worry about those complexities and the tasters just relax with this one!

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Photo of maximum12
3.53/5  rDev -14.5%
look: 3.5 | smell: 3 | taste: 3.5 | feel: 4 | overall: 4

Thanks once again to the coolest avatars, Sanderson, for this extra. 12 oz. can of a brewery I’ve never heard of. ‘Swag’ as my twelve year old daughter would say.

The pour is an appropriate color with an appropriate head, & if you don’t know what that means, www.mittenknitting.com is just around the corner. I expected more nose, I have to dig deeply (& disturb things best left undisturbed) to get a bit of pine & spring flowers. Gentle.

Top Cutter is a fetid swamp of varied hops. My initial reaction is a nose-crinkle at the soapiness but, thankfully, that aspect vanishes quickly to be replaced by a bitterness that’s lingering but not sharp. Pine zest, grapefruit rind, herbs & leaves that lean into slightly dank, orange, & spare spattering of caramel. The dank & caramel are what stick around. Smooth. Very smooth. And this is no sipper, but something that I’m taking two ounces at a time.

A nice West Coast IPA that honestly would be lost in the crowd of hundreds. Good beer.

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Photo of zeledonia
4.19/5  rDev +1.5%
look: 3.5 | smell: 4.5 | taste: 4.25 | feel: 3.5 | overall: 4.25

Tasted 13 July 2015.

Pours a barely hazy orange. Very orange. Just a thin layer of white head, but plenty of lacing as the beer moves around.

Smell is intoxicating. Delicious fruit - mango, citrus. With a bite in the back-end that reminds me those aromas come with companions. Smooth up front, transitioning cleanly to sharp, and every step along the way is a combination I want to savor.

Taste is excellent. Clean and dry throughout, overlaid with big fruity flavors in the front half. Yum.

Feel is lacking something. It lingers too long, and it’s a little too heavy, and the carbonation a little too low.

I really like this beer. I could like it better, with a few tweaks. But it’s really good. Outstanding fruity hop presence. Good stuff.

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Photo of Shaler_Tate
4/5  rDev -3.1%
look: 4 | smell: 4 | taste: 4 | feel: 4 | overall: 4

Really great IPA. The nose and taste didn't blow me away with fruit hoppy flavors. but it was really well balanced at the same time. I almost felt it was more malty than hoppy.

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Photo of ssteakley
4.65/5  rDev +12.6%
look: 4.75 | smell: 4.75 | taste: 4.5 | feel: 4.75 | overall: 4.75

Finally found some. It is an outstanding IPA. Taste, color, body, finish all add up to a top Pacific Northwest Beer. This is not for those who dislike hoppy beets but it is well balanced an if you ever considered a IPA this one is a great exale of those at the top.

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Photo of Bearshawks85
4.6/5  rDev +11.4%
look: 4.5 | smell: 4.5 | taste: 4.75 | feel: 4.5 | overall: 4.5

Best brew I had while visiting Spokane. I tried many different local WA beers and this one hit the spot. Tried this based on a recommendation from a beer guy at a grocery store and hit it on the head.

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Photo of mudbug
4.11/5  rDev -0.5%
look: 4 | smell: 4.25 | taste: 4 | feel: 4 | overall: 4.25

From the freshness dated (25 days old) 12 oz CAN into a Samuel Smith's perfect pint glass results in a slightly hazed burnished orange body capped by a 1/2 thick white head that recedes into a thin cap of foam that leaves sticky lacing as the level drops.
Aroma is pungent grapefruit rind, pine tree and biscuit with a slight fresh cut grass in there too.
Taste is upfront grapefruit rind bitter then mellows a bit with a slight cracker sweetness. citrusy sour lingers on the tongue.Other people get a dry crisp finish, but I don't, aftertaste is quite long and juicy and quite enjoyable.
Carbonation is lively, making this fairly bold IPA refreshing.
Thanks to Zestd from Idaho for bringing this treat out to the coast!

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Photo of biboergosum
4.16/5  rDev +0.7%
look: 4 | smell: 4.25 | taste: 4 | feel: 4 | overall: 4.5

12oz can, courtesy of the Idaho Pour Authority in Sandpoint. I was encouraged to seek this one out before traveling to NoDo, and was pleasantly surprised to find it readily available in grocery stores as well as on-tap locally.

This beer pours a clear, bright medium copper amber colour, with three fingers of puffy, rocky, and densely foamy off-white head, which leaves some decent layered cloudy lace around the glass as it lazily recedes.

It smells of bready, crackery pale malt, acrid underripe orange and white grapefruit pith, a certain flinty chalkiness, faint uric acid astringencies, and further herbal, leafy, and grassy hops. The taste is grainy, lightly biscuity pale malt, sassy lime, red grapefruit, and lemon citrus rind, a still heady chalky stoniness, equal and balancing dank pine and tropical fruit measures, and a wee twinge of metallic warming alcohol.

The carbonation is quite genial in its lightly-rendered and yet playful frothiness, the body a pleasant enough middleweight, and more or less smooth, the hops turning cheek to show the fruity, rather than intrusively bitter side of themselves, right here, right now. It finishes on a strong drying spree, the flinty, piney, and citrusy notes predominating.

Woweeee, what a good IPA! The minor hype surrounding this one for me is more than justified, especially as it toes the line between the West coast and Northeast versions of the style, for reasons already elucidated here. Quite tasty, easy to drink for the near 7 points of booze, and very worthy of showing off to all your hop-crazy, brew nerd peers, indeed.

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Photo of Nugganooch
3.9/5  rDev -5.6%
look: 3.75 | smell: 4.25 | taste: 3.75 | feel: 4 | overall: 3.75

12oz can to a standard wine glass – hotel room style!
Notes taken on 02/10/2015

A: Dark caramel amber body with some considerable chill haze that gives off a somewhat murky look. A massive and dense layer of khaki foam develops above that takes a few minutes to finally settle back into the glass. Lots of lovely lace tethers around the glass edge after every sip.

S: Smells very grassy pressed with fresh pine, some catty herbals, and a few light floral accents. A little lesser note of citrus fruit wafting through as well. No real malt presence here. Just very crisp and aromatic with the hops.

T: The flavors follow suit with loads of fresh cut grass, pine, and floral hops at play. I get some understated grapefruit and dank herbals there as well. Has a good dose of bready malt backing to balance while never obstructing all the hop flavors. There is a moderate to high amount of actual bitterness to this one with a nice crisp dry finish. Very clean with no alcohol flavors to make note. Overall a nicely balanced and easy drinking brew.

M: Light to moderate filling body with a nice crisp feel and a spritzy carbonation to it. Moderate to high level of perceived bitterness leading into a very dry finish. Pretty clean overall without much residual linger going on.

D: A real nice quaff. Nothing mind blowingly awesome here but a well-crafted brew with some fresh greeny hop flavors. Somewhat simplified yet very crushable.

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Photo of garymuchow
3.86/5  rDev -6.5%
look: 4.25 | smell: 3.75 | taste: 3.75 | feel: 4.5 | overall: 3.75

Many thanks to beertunes for this.
Pretty much classic in presentation, aroma and taste. Nice mix of citrus, grass and some additional fruit in hop aroma and taste. Clear and strong bitterness middle through very long finish. Firm malt backing, some in aroma and more in taste.
White head and amber towards gold color and slightly cloudy. Very nice mouthfeel with fullness, softness and smoothness.
A touch of hop excess in the taste and aroma(hop oil, skunk) and I'm becoming intolerant of that, knowing that an increasing number of good breweries can make highly hopped beers without it. I like the other flavors and balance.

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Topcutter from Bale Breaker Brewing Company
91 out of 100 based on 69 ratings.