Big Barrel Double IPA - Karl Strauss Brewing Company
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Ratings: 200 | Reviews: 91 | Display Reviews Only:
3.58/5 rDev -12%
22oz bomber purchased somewhere in Northern California. Brought back to Sydney and shared with @LaitueGonflable.
Pours a deep golden colour with a full weight to the body. Mildly hazed, but mostly pretty clear. Head is pocked, filmy and white, leaving some fairly fine specks of lace. Pretty full. Carbonation is also pretty fine. Looks very good all up.
Nose is pleasant enough. Resiny characters come through above a bright but light barley sugar character. Some soapy lemon comes through, leaving a slight rusty twang in the nostrils. Peppery spice is also noticeable, while the barley sugar character turns a bit doughy as it warms up.
Light and sweet on the front palate, more of that sugar note, before a little greenery comes through the mid-palate, along with a touch of herbs and a faint citrus bite. Clean finish, which is actually something of a shame, because it could really use more bite. Just a slight soda tingle on the back. ABV is well hidden at least.
Overall, this isn't bad. There's certainly things to like in it. It could use a bit more complexity: specifically, some more integrated complexity. Still, this is a solid brew, clearly well-made. I'd love to try it super-fresh as well.
12-27-2013 08:20:22 | More by lacqueredmouse
4.16/5 rDev +2.2%
Clear orange colored ale with a puffy off-white colored head.
Smell is strongly of citrus. Abundant grapefruit with strong tea and malt sugar. Smells woody and slightly smoky.
Starts out sweet with a woody citrus flavor. Abundant citrus flavor like the smell. Little bit of butter and burnt sugar with a slight onion flavor. Tasty yet very smooth with not the slightest hint of how strong it is.
Mouthfeel is good.
Overall a tasty and easy to drink double IPA. Not the best but it is nice for the price.
04-16-2013 01:34:03 | More by Zorro
4.03/5 rDev -1%
Can you have too many big IPA's from San Diego? Karl Strauss now has one. 22 ounce bottle, on to the beer:
Shines to a light, the beer features a glowing orange color to it, a darker orange hue really. The head is thick and creamy, shows little sign of going down, and is leaving lots of creamy, spotty lacing in the glass. Yep, those hops seem faded. Don't worry, there's still some good stuff. Faded tropical notes with some resin and pine. It can still taste good.
I agree with Halcyondays that by now, Big Barrel DIPA is more barleywine-like at this stage. That's not a bad thing though. The Nelson Sauvin hops are still noticable in the tasting notes, with moderate intensity. Easy resin and tropical notes. The beer isn't really bitter at all, creating a smmoth and easy drinking beer.
Being aged, this DIPA is worth a try. Being fresh, this beer must make a hophead scream with joy. I'd love to try this fresh.
04-18-2010 05:57:55 | More by DoubleJ
4.35/5 rDev +6.9%
Thanks goes out to Bitterbill for this brew.
Pours a very nice clean/clear golden orange color, nice carbonation, very nice thick/creamy one-finger plus off-white head, with some very nice sticky lacing left behind. The nose is hoppy, with some malt notes, very nice citrus/pine notes. The taste is also very nice, hoppy, slight malt note, nice kick of citrus/pine. Medium body. Very drinkable, this one really surprised me, very tasty. Thanks Bill!
12-15-2009 23:32:12 | More by Wasatch
4.21/5 rDev +3.4%
Good light orange and light brown appearance. Amazing musty Nelson aroma, lots of dry pine to it, followed by a heartier, thicker grapefruit contingent.
Taste, hoppy, ample bitterness, doesn't weigh heavy in the mouthfeel. A little upbeat with ever so slight mint feel to it. The most complex and best Karl Strauss I've ever had I'm thinking at this point. . . by far. Melds dryness with stickiness and a great reperesentation of the Nelson hop. Kinda strange, I've had this and the Nelson for the first time within the last month, and the results are completely surprising, as I like the KS more than the Alpine (for once).
A great amount of drinkability for a beer this strong, very easy going down. I would recommend you drink this earlier in your night (order wise with other beers) as the Nelson hop is delicate, but here, it is strong, but I just think the Nelson hop needs to really shine a little warmer and earlier in the evening.
$6 a bomber and well worth it. Easily the best thing ever from Karl Strauss.
11-20-2010 01:58:49 | More by Beerandraiderfan
4.2/5 rDev +3.2%
Bottle shared by Joe - thanks!
Pours a slightly hazy copper color with a one-finger off-white head. The head recedes into a patchy layer on top leaving decent lacing.
Smells of a combination of pale and moderately dry caramel malts with large amounts of citrus and tropical fruit hops.
Tastes similar to how it smells, although the hops aren't quite as robust as in the nose. Equal amounts of pale and caramel malt flavors kick things off and are joined quickly by large amounts of citrus, tropical fruit, and lightly herbal hop flavors. The flavor profile sweetens a bit midway through the sip before ending with a solid amount of bitterness.
Mouthfeel is good. It's got a nice thickness with moderate carbonation.
Drinkability is very good. I had no problems finishing my glass and could easily have a few more.
Overall I was pleasantly surprised by this beer after not really enjoying any of the previous beers I'd had from Karl Strauss. This one's well worth a shot.
08-01-2010 00:32:17 | More by glid02
4.05/5 rDev -0.5%
On tap at Churchill's during game 1 of the NBA Finals. The beer is dark golden with a big white head and scattered lacing.
The nose is mostly Nelson hops, with notes of grape, grapefruit rind and flesh, and a little pine. There's a solid caramel malt foundation beneath the hops. Nice aroma.
The flavor is also strongly off Nelson hops, with a moderate bitterness, a little alcohol, and a near balancing caramel malt base. The hop flavor is of grapefruit, grape, orange, and a touch of pine. The finish is dry with lingering bitterness, grape, and grapefruit. A nice Nelson hop Double IPA and a noble effort from a normally lackluster brewery.
06-04-2010 02:40:15 | More by HopHead84
3.99/5 rDev -2%
Appearence is hazy gold with a big white head leaving chunky, foamy lace.
Smell is strong, sweet hops, citrus, almonds?
Taste is also big and hoppy with an unusual candied vibe up front, some malt sugars mid-palate before a resious, bitter finish.
Mouthfeel is sticky and dry.
Drinkability is good, a dank, unusual, complex IPA.
08-10-2013 06:14:46 | More by ccrida
4.4/5 rDev +8.1%
This pours a clear light amber gold with a 1 finger head of foam. I see a lot of lacing when I tilt my glass from side to side.
This boasts 90 IBUs and when I take a few whiffs, I can't see myself disagreeing! It has a tropical fruit hop smell...plenty of grapefruit and mangoes, some light pine, and behind them, a good caramel malt sweetness. When I say good, it's not in your face but it is there and that suggest some balance in the taste...me hopes.
Yep, it's in the taste as well. A nice caramel malt sweetness guides you to the very flavourful hoppy goodness of the grapefruit and mangoe and some assertive piney notes. Man, the hopheads should give this one a firm thumbs up when they get a hold of this and those seeking an example of the style that has a good malty backbone should also be pleased. Delicious.
Medium bodied with the carbonation on the lighter side of medium. Oh and, head retention is awesome!
Drinkability? 9%abv and I'm getting minimal warming. Touche. Very tasty and very smooth, this is an excellent Double IPA and a most excellent brew from Karl Strauss(I haven't had one of their brews in many years but it seems that they have kicked up their game a notch or 3 with this brew) that I could enjoy another bottle of at one sitting!. Well done and thanks to Joey for describing this beer so well in his news letter!
11-24-2009 00:41:53 | More by Bitterbill
4.2/5 rDev +3.2%
Pours a translucent deep honey orange color with a nice white foamy, soapy head that leaves some nice sticky lacing.
Aromas begin with a boat ton of pineapple, not pine, but fruity pineapple juice almost. The you get some orange, light grapefruit and a tiny bit of floral hops are present as well. As it warms I can detect the nice caramel and bready malt sweetness. The almost acidic vinous/earthy white wine-like Nelson hops are stealing the show here and dominating my olfactory senses.
The tastes begin with the light caramel and sweet bready malts, then you get a ton of pineapple and orange hop flavors. The bready sweet malts are present throughout helping to balance the bitter hop flavors. Nice tropical mango flavors join the party and complement the pineapple and the other candied/sweet hop flavors. There is a nice light spiciness mixed in there as well that I can't quite identify.
The mouthfeel is medium to full bodied with medium carbonation; exactly what I would want in this style of beer. The finish borderlines being crisp and clean but the ample hops make it lean ever so slightly to the typical DIPA "sticky" feeling. Not a drop of alcohol is present which is a great complement/accomplishment for any beer of this style/magnitude.
Overall this is a great extremely dangerously drinkable DIPA. The sweet caramel and bready malts are perfectly balanced with the hop bitterness and hop flavors. I can't stress enough how balanced this is with all the flavors which is why this beer is such a winner. It's not mind-blowing in any category, just really really well made beer that highlights a great new hop variety (Nelson Sauvin); not as awesome as Alpine Nelson does, but still a great, highly recommended beer that is worth seeking out.
09-22-2011 22:44:59 | More by claspada
4.1/5 rDev +0.7%
Appearance - This is a rich, heavy orange in color yet clear with a nice, retentive head that came up on a vigorous pour.
Smell - The pine is stiff but balanced. There's some orange in here as well along with a much larger floral hop aroma. The malts are very sweet and full of butter.
Taste - The malty butterness is wonderful here and the hop combination from the nose pairs nicely with it. The floral notes are a bit more prominent but otherwise this is rightly balanced.
Mouthfeel - This is a bit lighter than I would have liked but just does qualify as medium-bodied. The carbonation is appropriate for the style. This ale is very smooth and creamy in the mouth and the light bitter bite at the end is just stiff enough to get noticed.
Drinkability - This is a very smooth DIPA with no hint whatsoever of the 9% ABV. It is big but not overpowering and would be an excellent choice to introduce the novice drinker to the style.
02-24-2011 02:48:51 | More by RoyalT
4.05/5 rDev -0.5%
Appearance - Hazy orange/amber colour with a large size frothy beige coloured head. There appears to be a fairly high amount of carbonation and there is some fair lacing. The head lasted for around 5 minutes before it was gone.
Smell - Malts, caramel, hops, oranges, pineapples
Taste & Mouth - There is a slightly below average amount of carbonation and I can taste malts, caramel and a decent amount of hops. As well, there is a quite a bit of tropical fruit/pineapple flavour and some orange zest and juice. It finishes with a malty sweet aftertaste with a medium amount of lingering hop bitterness.
Overall - I couldn't find a date on my bottle, so I'm not really sure how fresh it was. It had a decent amount of hop taste but It's not a hop bomb by any means. I enjoyed the beer more as it warmed up in my glass. If you're a fan of tropical fruit flavours in your DIPA's, give this one a try.
06-15-2011 16:33:21 | More by spinrsx
4.3/5 rDev +5.7%
Big thanks to turboedtwo for this bottle.
It's a gorgeous pour with a deep clear amber body with a steady stream of bubbles feeding a rocky off-white head that shows excellent retention and lacing.
The aroma is a combination of citrus fruits, pine and white grapes. There is some sweet malty aromas and a hint of earthy spices as well.
The taste has an even spicier character up front with some pine resin and the distinctive Nelson Sauvin chardonnay-type thing going on. The finish is sticky with pine resin hops.
The mouthfeel is medium bodied and sticky with moderate carbonation.
I don't have much experience with this brewery but I really enjoy this one. It's a great DIPA with a distinctive spicy character that makes it fairly unique.
05-19-2010 01:51:13 | More by gford217
4.2/5 rDev +3.2%
A: poured a amberish copper into my tulip with a good finger head that had pretty good lacing sticking to the glass.
S: lovely hop aromas right away on the first whiff but not over bareing that also allow the some sweet malts to come thru.
T: nice hoppy bang with good bitterness and again not too sweet which had a pretty good balance between the hops.
M: meduim to full body with some good carbonation.
D: will definitely be drinking this one again and glad that I can go to the local liquor and pick some up.
05-13-2010 16:57:30 | More by Gobzilla
3.5/5 rDev -14%
Pours a vibrant orange colour. Bit of cloud. Head is off-white, sparse bubbling but nice uneven lace. Pleasant.
Smells extremely nutty. Caramel toffee, sweet, earthy, peanut brittle, hazelnut toffee, some citrus zest, salted caramel and marzipan. Sweet more than zesty. Is that a problem? Maybe a slight one.
Taste is a bit cardboardy. Possibly oxidised? Tastes caramel toffee, malty upfront, then gets metallic midway, some slightly old herbs, rocket, some citrus tang. Bitter, bit of freshness but has an empty stale woody flavour as well.
Bit tingly, bit of body to it. OK.
Tastes a bit old, some nice notes but a bit meek. Will attempt to re-try, if possible.
09-20-2013 01:48:26 | More by laituegonflable
3.78/5 rDev -7.1%
412th review on BA
bottle to tulip
App- A very dark sunset orange with amber and yellow highlights. One finger head that was nicely fluffy and white. Very sticky lacing.
Smell- Smells a bit of grapefruit and malts with some fresh mint.
Taste- A bit of a creamier DIPA with some malts being forward and fruits accentuating the big alcohol feel but not boozy.
Mouth- Medium bodied and medium carbed as was expecting but like the taste was a bit maltier and a bit creamier than most.
Drink- Pretty good DIPA, holds its own with some of the big boys but just falls a bit short. Was good but but probably wont come back to this one.
04-18-2011 03:00:37 | More by FosterJM
4.3/5 rDev +5.7%
Churchill's Pub & Grille
San Marcos, CA
Glowing orange with a thick off-white head and lots of stick left all over the glass. Gorgeous.
Incredibly pungent and tropical aroma. The distinct Nelson hops really shine here. The aromas are of strong, smashed pineapples and grapefruits, along with a strong floral note, and some dank, sticky marijuana. Love it! One of the best aromas I've ever experienced from any DIPA.
Medium to high bitterness, but loads of grapefruit and pineapple flavors balance things out. Again, the Nelson hops shine through tremendously.
Medium to thick body with a dry finish.
An absolutely wonderful DIPA. I need to have this one again (and again and again and again). Honestly, I never expected a DIPA this good to come from Karl Strauss--count me in as very pleasantly surprised.
09-28-2011 15:04:34 | More by ehammond1
4.03/5 rDev -1%
A - Pours a slightly hazy almost amber color with a dense tan head that leaves a lot of sticky lacing behind.
S - Primarily tropical fruit hops, mostly pineapple. Some sweet caramel malt comes through as well.
T - Massive hops up front, again mostly tasting of pineapple, with some other tropical fruits mixed in. Nice amount of malt balances this out nicely.
M - Nice, bright medium mouthfeel with a nice level of carbonation.
O - Easily the best beer I've had from Karl Strauss, though still a notch or two below the best DIPAs I've had. Still, a very drinkable DIPA with hardly any noticeable alcohol.
07-25-2011 16:44:33 | More by warnerry
Big Barrel Double IPA from Karl Strauss Brewing Company
91 out of 100 based on 200 ratings.