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Big Sky IPA - Big Sky Brewing Company

Not Rated.
Big Sky IPABig Sky IPA

Educational use only; do not reuse.
very good

462 Reviews
very good

(Read More)
Reviews: 462
Hads: 1,115
Avg: 3.86
pDev: 18.91%
Wants: 32
Gots: 118 | FT: 0
Brewed by:
Big Sky Brewing Company visit their website
Montana, United States

Style | ABV
American IPA |  6.20% ABV

Availability: Year-round

Notes & Commercial Description:
Beer added by: beernut7 on 08-18-2002

In Montana, many classic memories are made right after someone says, “Hold my beer and watch this.” These bold, assertive moments deserve a bold, assertive beer – Big Sky IPA. A distinct hop presence and malty backbone will leave you refreshed and ready for your moment of glory. Hang on tight and enjoy the ride.

65 IBU
Beer: Reviews & Ratings
Sort by:  Recent | High | Low | Top Raters | Read the Alström Bros Beer Reviews and Beer Ratings of Big Sky IPA Alström Bros
Reviews: 462 | Hads: 1,115
Photo of vette2006c5r
4/5  rDev +3.6%
look: 4 | smell: 4 | taste: 4 | feel: 4 | overall: 4

Big Sky ours a darker copper color, with a nice large lacing white head. There is a nice hoppy and floral aroma. The taste has a noticeable but subtle malty backbone with some nice floral notes. Not overpowering, good hop bite, nice blend with the sweet malty backbone. Overall its a well balanced, and very enjoyable IPA. Very nice.

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Photo of MartzMimic
3.86/5  rDev 0%
look: 3.5 | smell: 3.75 | taste: 4 | feel: 3.5 | overall: 4

Pours a nice copper with a bit of haze. Foamy head that reduces fairly fast. Some pine, malt and floral notes on the nose. Lemon, oranges, pine with a bit of bread. Decent bitterness. Medium mouth, but oily enough that it leaves a lingering aftertaste. Nice complexity without trying too hard. Not the best IPA out there, but if wouldn't mind having one now and again.

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Photo of Karibourgeois
3/5  rDev -22.3%

Slightly cloudy copper pour with a minimal head. Flowery aroma with a little bit of malt. Taste very much follows the nose with a floral hop flavor upfront backed by a strong malt presence. Has tastes of straw, pine, bread and caramel. Finishes dry with a mild bitterness.

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Photo of whatthehull
4/5  rDev +3.6%
look: 4 | smell: 4 | taste: 4 | feel: 4 | overall: 4

Poured into a wine/snifter/tulip

A - Swampy golden orange with a hint of earthy brown, one finger tan head and very sticky lacing

S - super rad hop funk right off the nose, bright over ripened pineapple, tons of sugar, fresh malts, grainy, very dense loaf of bread, common flowers, very yeasty and a nice pine sap like note

T - Huge sweet malt with a crazy citrus/pine/pineapple/floral hop. Kind of punches you in the face with all of that at once. nice booze note, dense, a slight mary jane, biscuity and very frsh tasting

M - Full bodied, well balanced, not much complexity but just the right amount, medium plus acidity (but very refreshing) and a very nice long sweet, to hop to sweet malt finish.

D/O - This is a beast of a malt backbone IPA. All the hops and malts you want. Drinks like a snack. Haha. Not quite a meal, but a snack for sure. Very refreshing, great taste and easy to drink. This should suit any ale lovers guidelines of taste

Final thoughts - Very reasonable $8 sixer and a nice 6.2% abv, I could drink this all day!

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Photo of lochef81
3.48/5  rDev -9.8%
look: 3.75 | smell: 3.25 | taste: 3.5 | feel: 3.75 | overall: 3.5

This ale pours a very nice hazy deep amber color with a slight white head. The aroma is malty and sweet with some hop notes but nothing remarkable. The flavor follows suit. Mostly malt with a bit of a pine hop bite. This is a good beer but nothing worth seeking out.

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Photo of a0lbudman
3.82/5  rDev -1%
look: 4 | smell: 3.25 | taste: 4 | feel: 4 | overall: 4

A-light amber color with a nice head that leaves a lace
S-I smell hops, but you get a malty aroma also. There is a nobel hops like aroma in it also
T-malt is balanced with a hop kick in the aftertaste that last until the finish
M- medium body and medium carbonation
O- this beer has a bold taste that is differant from other american IPA's

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Photo of BierJager89
4.45/5  rDev +15.3%
look: 4 | smell: 4.5 | taste: 4.5 | feel: 4.25 | overall: 4.5

A: Glowy translucent amber orange with a white head.

S: Lots of fresh orange, some mango, tangerine, garlic in the nose. Simcoe?

T: Malt, orange, garlic, tangerine. Very tasty. Mmmm simcoe? I think it's simcoe.

M: Medium bodied, average carbonation for an IPA

O: A great IPA, I've loved every beer I've had from this brewery, and this is my favorite thus far. Their pale ale is great, too.

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Photo of BastardKing24
4/5  rDev +3.6%
look: 4 | smell: 4 | taste: 4 | feel: 4 | overall: 4

Pours a dark orange with a 1 finger white head that holds lacing ok.

Smells great with orange peel, pine, lemon, bread, and rye.

Taste is subdued for an IPA but its full of nice malt flavors followed by orange, pine, and honey.

Feel is great, light and refreshing, and plenty of carbonation.

Overall a very well done IPA

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Photo of Bosoxfan20
3.1/5  rDev -19.7%
look: 4 | smell: 2.75 | taste: 3 | feel: 3.5 | overall: 3.25

A- Clear copper with a foamy, tan head of about 2 fingers. Great soapy lacing. A hearty looking IPA here.

S- Nothing that really blows me away on the nose. Delicate aroma of pine cones and biscuits. I expect more bold aroma of the style.

T- Big earthy pine hops combine with a caramelized sugar malt base. Some metallic notes that seem a little off, but not too distracting. High acidity leads to a bitter finish.

M- Chewy and creamy. Mid body. Fair drinkability.

O- A traditional IPA that makes no bones about its straight forward style. A comforting brew that won't blow you away, but also won't leave you overly disappointed with your selection.

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Photo of drpimento
3.8/5  rDev -1.6%
look: 4.5 | smell: 3.75 | taste: 3.75 | feel: 3.75 | overall: 3.75

Nice beer. Poured at a good temperature with a large, foamy, lite tan, billowy head that settled after a while and some lace. Color is a clear medium amber with some bubble trails. Aroma is hop up front, some malt to balance. Flavor's like nose, all qualities are bolder and and add tang, slightest hint of sweet, ditto caramel. Body/carbonation good. Finish is like flavor, not too complex, yet goes vey well with spicy food.

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Photo of brewbattles
4.2/5  rDev +8.8%
look: 4.5 | smell: 4.5 | taste: 4 | feel: 4.5 | overall: 4

We did a blind taste test between this beer and 4 others to determine which was a better IPA. The beers that were competing were: Stone IPA, Big Sky IPA, Bear Republic Racer 5, Lagunitas IPA, and Full Sail IPA. Here is the video:


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Photo of arc3636
3.53/5  rDev -8.5%
look: 4.25 | smell: 3 | taste: 3.5 | feel: 4 | overall: 3.75

Bottle into Sam Adams glass

A - a bit darker and reddish than expected from an ipa. Full 2 fingers of head

S - floral and orange hops

T - solid bitterness from the hops, but not too heavy. Floral, orange, and grapefruit hops

M - above average, hops flavor seems to continue to grow after I had swallowed

O - solid, balanced ipa

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Photo of ckollias
4.5/5  rDev +16.6%
look: 4.5 | smell: 4.5 | taste: 4.5 | feel: 4.5 | overall: 4.5

Enjoyed this bottle of a large snifter glass.

A: Pours cloudy orange-amber hue with a fluffy white head that leaves a good trail and wispy lace.

S: Hoppy aroma with a slight biscuit and caramel background.

T: Bitter beginning with some tart hops followed by a slightly sweet caramel middle and
finishes dry and bitter.

M: Medium body and medium carbonation.

O: Excellent brew – I’ll have another.

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Photo of jngrizzaffi
4.22/5  rDev +9.3%
look: 4.25 | smell: 4 | taste: 4.25 | feel: 4.5 | overall: 4.25

Pours a hazy amber color with a finger width foamy head. Head retention is minimal. Lacing is decent. Mainly a piney, resinous aroma with a slight malty backbone and citrus. Not a lot there but still pleasant. Bready, malty taste up front. Nice piney hop with a slight citrus taste. Decent astringency at the end. Decent very drinkable beer but nothing special about it.

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Photo of RonKoch
4.06/5  rDev +5.2%
look: 4 | smell: 4.25 | taste: 4 | feel: 4 | overall: 4

It's 5:00 on a hot day in which I worked reasonably hard, so I brought home this from the HyVee Wines and Spirits. It is very refreshing and drinkable for a moment like this. Evergreen and apple in the aroma. Vine fresh hops in the taste. Bitterness is real and strong, but not so oppressive like in some newcomer IPAs which make me think the brewer is only out to make me pucker. The very prominent hops do not completely hide the sweet malt backbone. Good head retention and pretty lacing on my standard pint glass.

Overall, I'll be happy to go back to this IPA in the near future.

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Photo of yeastlovehoppiness_greg
3.59/5  rDev -7%
look: 3.25 | smell: 3.5 | taste: 3.5 | feel: 4 | overall: 3.75

This was a pretty darn good beer. It had a nice dark amber color for an IPA. It is also not as hoppy for an IPA. The tastre is pretty bitter. Not in a bad way but its a nice change from your average hop overload. The beer has a pretty sharp feel on the tongue. id recomend to anyone to try it.

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Photo of Chickenhawk9932
3.69/5  rDev -4.4%
look: 3.75 | smell: 3.5 | taste: 3.75 | feel: 3.75 | overall: 3.75

Pours a deep cooper with a tall thick head of off white foam, good retention and lacing.

Nice citrus aroma - orange, lemon - followed by pungent earthy hop notes with some slight pine. All this backed by a nice floral bouquet.

Sweet orange and bitter lemon dance around a malt breadiness. The flavor is kept hopping by bitter earthy, pine notes. The flavor explodes across the palate like the sun stretching across the wide western sky. A solid IPA.

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Photo of Averwo
4.21/5  rDev +9.1%
look: 4 | smell: 3.5 | taste: 4.5 | feel: 4.25 | overall: 4.5

Pours a beautiful unfiltered dark orange.
Smell is nice and citrusy. Nothing really stands out like grapefruit or anything like that. Just general IPA goodness.
Taste is wonderful. Rich citrus hops. Full of bitterness. Tons of pine and grapefruit. Aftertaste is nice and hoppy.
Medium bodied mouth feel.
Definitely a first class IPA.

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Photo of TheMarkE
3.74/5  rDev -3.1%
look: 3.5 | smell: 3.75 | taste: 3.75 | feel: 3.75 | overall: 3.75

Appearance: Nice copper shade, good foam and lacing.

Smell: Citrus and malt, just like an IPA should smell.

Taste: Citrus and floral hops, caramel and grassy malts.

Mouthfeel: Medium bodied, crisp, typical bitter aftertaste.

The Verdict: Good brew. A solid IPA with plenty of malt character balancing out the hops. So far, I'm impressed with this Montana brewer.

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Photo of chinchill
3.23/5  rDev -16.3%
look: 4 | smell: 2.75 | taste: 3.25 | feel: 3.75 | overall: 3.25

Undated 12 oz bottle purchased last week near brewery.
Pour is orange-amber with a thick, creamy, tan head. Earthy and piney hops dominate the aroma and the flavor. A bit of citrus in th taste too. Medium body with medium+ carbonation. Fairly smooth.
O: too earthy and piney for my taste.

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Photo of carolinared
4.15/5  rDev +7.5%
look: 3.75 | smell: 4.25 | taste: 4.25 | feel: 4 | overall: 4

Poured from bottle into pint glass, nice head and color. Enjoyed the great piney aroma and complex taste with pine and citrus touches. This is my preferred IPA style vs others that just focus on the hoppy bitterness. Still looking for a few "go to" IPA's to drink on regular basis, have generally been disappointed by some of the well known brands since to me they are pretty much the same (bitter). This one has a nice balance of aroma, hoppy flavors and bitterness.

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Photo of Sark
3.78/5  rDev -2.1%
look: 3.75 | smell: 3.75 | taste: 3.75 | feel: 4 | overall: 3.75

Appearance- a finger and a half of eggshell velvet head, golden copper colored with low carbonation

Smell- citrus hops with light pale malt sweetness

Taste- pale malts up front, mid tongue grapefruit and hop bitters on the finish

Mouthfeel- medium bodied, moderately slow fade

Overall- a solid IPA out of Big Sky, easy drinking and not overly filling.

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Photo of CFHMagnet
3.85/5  rDev -0.3%
look: 4.5 | smell: 3.75 | taste: 3.75 | feel: 3.75 | overall: 4

Poured this one rather roughly into my pint glass. Came up with a little over a finger of sandy colored head over a rosy copper body. Lacing clings rather well to the sides.

This one smells rather sugary. Heavy malts, a bit of juicy tropical fruit.

This beer is very malt forward. Sweet malt, very sugary is the first punch, the number two punch comes right as you are swallowing. Big tropical and pine hop flavor smacks you bitterly in the tongue. The aftertaste is all piney and bitter.

Mouthfeel is medium bodied. Lightly syrupy.

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Photo of AndyP612
4.39/5  rDev +13.7%
look: 4.5 | smell: 4.25 | taste: 4.5 | feel: 4.5 | overall: 4.25

Bottle aggressively poured into Uptown Bar Pint glass.

A- Amber to dark brown. Very inviting fairly clear.

S- Hops forward with a lean towards citrus. More Hops... Cirtus.

T- Tons of fruit right off that bat to dissipate into a hoppy overtones Fruit, Grapefruit. To balance out the hop tip with malty sweetness finish.

M- Still has carbonation toward the second half of the pint. Delicious. Very carbonated leaping off the tongue. Dry finish. Still inviting.

O- The carbonation bites the cheeks yet it continues to invite you to drink more. The grapefruit presence sustains its attendance. Very dry finish is noteworthy. Feels like a west cost IPA in that I continue want more but only in a six pack increment. A very interesting feeling I feel but the feeling I get is sheer enjoyment. Cheers.

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Photo of smbslt
3.56/5  rDev -7.8%
look: 3.5 | smell: 3.75 | taste: 3.5 | feel: 3.5 | overall: 3.5

Good burnt orange color with a creamy goldish head. Too much sediment though to be appealing.

Citrusy (orange) but with an oddly placed mocha influence.

Interesting floral sensation but the malts were to forward and the aftertaste was not pleasant.

Mouthfeel fine except the finish - did not really matter at this point.

Subtle or just confused - the beer I mean. Did not seem like it should be in the IPA category. May score it higher as a pale ale.

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Big Sky IPA from Big Sky Brewing Company
87 out of 100 based on 462 ratings.