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Big Sky IPA - Big Sky Brewing Company

Big Sky IPABig Sky IPA

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

854 Ratings
very good

(view ratings)
Ratings: 854
Reviews: 437
rAvg: 3.83
pDev: 12.01%

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:
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 added by: beernut7 on 08-18-2002)
Beer: Ratings & Reviews
Ratings: 854 | Reviews: 437 | Show All Ratings:
Photo of Mattamue


3.48/5  rDev -9.1%
look: 2.5 | smell: 3 | taste: 4 | feel: 2.5 | overall: 3.5

Bottle into a pint. No bottle/expire date.

a Creamy-tan head. Lacing clings to the glass like the surf retreating from the beach. Very subdued carbonation, could count the lines of bubbles and there is less than a dozen. Burnt amber, translucent.

s Citric notes on par with hops resin. Apple and cheddar. Sweet malt in the background.

t Pear and apple up front. Hops bitter herb middle of the taste and the aftertaste.

m Watery light body. Easily tasted and re-tasted. Very dry.

o Not impressed with the appearance. Surprised by the taste. Held back again by the thin body. Would recommend, would choose another IPA for myself for regular drinking.

Serving type: bottle

04-07-2012 00:35:50 | More by Mattamue
Photo of depechemode1983


3.05/5  rDev -20.4%
look: 4 | smell: 3 | taste: 3 | feel: 3 | overall: 3

A - Pours out a hazy copper/bronze color. The head is 2 1/2 fingers and off-white. Its dense through the middle but has a foamy looking crown. Retention is excellent and lacing is superb.

S - Has a strong bitter piney smell up front but balances out nicely through the middle with sweet malts and tropical fruits. Mainly pineapple and ruby red grapefruit.

T - A little light on flavor. Mostly you get bitter pine and grapefruit rind. A little mono toned on the taste. Not too bad though.

M - Almost medium bodied. Carbonation is nice. Kinda bubbly. No complaints.

O - Just slightly about average. Very simple and straight forward.

Serving type: bottle

04-03-2012 21:52:59 | More by depechemode1983
Photo of hoplover82


4.03/5  rDev +5.2%
look: 4.5 | smell: 4 | taste: 4 | feel: 4 | overall: 4

A-Pours a crystal clear amber color with a full/medium creamy persistant off white head that leaves extremely strong lacing in it's trails down the glass.

S-The aroma is beautiful of citrus fruit and a noticable amount of earthy pine from the hops. And the malts are mild and caramel like along with some soft bready notes in the back.

T-The flavor is much like the aroma with notes of pine and citrus fruit up front and a strong bitter presents in the finish I get a soft hint of caramel and fresh baked sweet bread. There are some fruity esther notes from the yeast as the beer warms. The hops are up front as they should be. Very nice interpretation of the style.

M-It has a full, chewy yet creamy body. And a slightly dry/bitter finish that lasts for a long time.

O-Overall I was suprized by this beer. I wasn't expecting it to be this good, but it is. And I highly recommend this beer to any hop lover like myself. Cheers everyone!

Serving type: bottle

03-22-2012 04:51:03 | More by hoplover82
Photo of arizcards


4/5  rDev +4.4%
look: 4 | smell: 4 | taste: 4 | feel: 4 | overall: 4

Received a bottle as a gift for helping out a friend recently. Best by 4-12-12.

Beer poured a clear orange with a solid white head that is leaving lacing behind.

Nose is floral, citrus, and mango.

Taste is some mango with a grapefruit rind finish.

Feel is quite smooth for the style, malt backbone lends to a smooth finish. Carbonation is fairly light.

Overall i like this ipa. It is solid in all aspects and almost at a sessionable abv. I have had it at a few tailgates-very enjoyable!

Serving type: bottle

03-09-2012 01:52:48 | More by arizcards
Photo of irrgalaxy


3.35/5  rDev -12.5%
look: 3.5 | smell: 3 | taste: 3.5 | feel: 3 | overall: 3.5

Poured into pint glass.

A: Dark amber color, with significant amounts of red for an IPA. Significant head with fairly large bubbles.

S: Crisp, hoppy aroma.

T: Smooth taste, not overly hoppy as the aroma would have you believe. Nice finish on the middle of the tongue.

M: Regular.

Serving type: bottle

03-08-2012 02:52:02 | More by irrgalaxy
Photo of superspak


4.1/5  rDev +7%
look: 4 | smell: 4 | taste: 4 | feel: 4 | overall: 4.5

12 ounce bottle into pint glass, best by 5/3/2012. Pours crystal clear orange amber color with a nice 2 finger dense light khaki head with fantastic retention that reduces to a thick cap that lingers. Some decent lacing on the glass. Aromas of big grapefruit, orange, pine, floral, caramel, biscuit, and herbal spiciness. Nice and well balanced aromas with good strength. Taste of big grapefruit, pine, orange, caramel, honey, biscuit, and herbal spices. Good amount of bitterness on the finish; with lingering notes of citrus, pine, caramel, and biscuit on the finish for a bit. Great malt and hop balance, showcasing a great citrus flavor throughout. Medium carbonation and body; with a fairly creamy and slightly sticky mouthfeel. Very smooth drinking; with basically no alcohol warming presence. Overall, some seriously excellent stuff here. Great balanced flavor profile, and very smooth drinking. Recommended.

Serving type: bottle

02-20-2012 03:00:17 | More by superspak
Photo of Jamesthebrit


3.6/5  rDev -6%
look: 4 | smell: 3 | taste: 4 | feel: 3 | overall: 3.5

A: A really nice looking IPA. Copper color.

S: Slight hops, subtle floral.

T: Quite smooth. Hops are not overwhemling. Sweet at first and finishes a little bitter.

Mouthfeel: Too much carbonation. Otherwise sits comfortably.

Overall: An above average IPA. It has a lot of subtle flavors with nothing too offputting. Very drinkable.

Serving type: bottle

02-03-2012 20:01:18 | More by Jamesthebrit
Photo of comfortablynumb1


4/5  rDev +4.4%
look: 4 | smell: 4 | taste: 4 | feel: 4 | overall: 4

12oz bottle into a H24 Barrel Roll Series snifter...

A - Pours copper with a one finger off white head that dissipates at a fairly hasty pace. A decent amount of lace coats the glass...

S - Caramel malts and good dose of citrus fruits. A little subdued, but what does come through smells like there is a good balance between hops and malt...

T - Like the scent suggested this one is very well balanced. Caramel malts, orange, mango, grapefruit, and a little lemon zest. Finishes clean with some lingering grapefruit...

M - Super smooth. Medium bodied with a good amount of carbonation...

O - Solid IPA. Not only would this be a great session beer, but it would be a good introduction for someone looking to get into the style. Definitely something I will buying again in the near future...


Serving type: bottle

01-30-2012 00:07:51 | More by comfortablynumb1
Photo of hopfacebrew


3.73/5  rDev -2.6%
look: 4 | smell: 4 | taste: 3.5 | feel: 3.5 | overall: 4

Re-post from my hacked "jmkratt" account :(...

look: 4 | smell: 4 | taste: 3.5 | feel: 3.5 | overall: 4

Poured from brown 12oz bottle to pint glass.

A - The beer pours a translucent dark copper color with a 1 finger white head. Decent retention and lacing throughout.

S - A citrus hops aroma: orange and grapefruit. A tad bit of earthy/nutty character as well.

T/M - The beer starts with a grainy/bread character. The bitter hop character soon invades the palette with a citrus and herbal character. Medium bitterness. There are caramel toasted grains prevalent in the middle. The beer finishes dry with a mild hop flavor on the tongue and a bit of bread. Lighter side of medium bodied with decent carbonation. Pretty average for an American IPA.

D - Pretty good.

Overall, this is a good brew. I don't think it's outstanding in any of its attributes but easy to put a few back. I'd drink more.

Serving type: bottle

Reviewed on: 02-16-2011 16:38:44

Serving type: bottle

01-19-2012 14:14:09 | More by hopfacebrew
Photo of Huffaroma


4.9/5  rDev +27.9%
look: 4 | smell: 5 | taste: 5 | feel: 4.5 | overall: 5

Poured this into my beer stein so the most description that I would explain would be the aroma and the taste. As I am a hop head and very biased towards my home town beers, anyway the pour was great a nice golden copper pour. The head was a great build nice and fluffy. Like I was saying before though the aroma is what really caught me from the this beer much like the taste. It was such a great grapefruit/piney smell and the hops just bring back so much flavor while drinking it from a stein.

Taste-It is truly a wonderfully hopped beer that it stayed through the beginning and finished very clean. This could be partly because the water in Montana is some of the best tasting clean water and Big Sky brews their beer with great integrity.

Serving type: bottle

01-16-2012 04:40:38 | More by Huffaroma
Photo of CuriousMonk


3.9/5  rDev +1.8%
look: 4 | smell: 3.5 | taste: 4 | feel: 4 | overall: 4

Poured from 12oz bottle into pint glass. This big, rich IPA features Simcoe hops which give it both a fruity, piney hop nose and a clean, ringing bitterness. IN-between, the malt flavor is slightly caramel for a touch of malt sweetness. This IPA is well-balanced and very expressive with hops.

Serving type: bottle

12-29-2011 15:57:57 | More by CuriousMonk
Photo of kojevergas


2.88/5  rDev -24.8%
look: 2.5 | smell: 3 | taste: 3 | feel: 3 | overall: 2.5

12 fl oz brown glass bottle with standard pressure cap served into an imperial pint glass in high altitude Castle Rock, Colorado. Reviewed live. Expectations are low given beers from this style are usually brewed without balance in mind in my experience. No best before date on the bottle, but I consumed it the day I bought the variety pack it was part of to minimize the potential of hop decay.

A: Pours a three finger head of no cream, bad thickness, and good retention. Colour is a clear light copper.

Sm: As expected, the only detectable note is hops. I'd guess cascade. A moderately strong aroma.

T: A hoppy flavour profile with too much bitterness plaguing the third act. Some light malts try to aid the balance but fail. An imbalanced IPA that is nevertheless somewhat pleasant to drink. It's built with an emphasis on hops without regard for balance; this may please fans of the style but I don't find it appealing.

Mf: Smooth and wet, suiting the floral notes of the body.

Dr: Drinkable but lacking balance. The cost is okay. It hides its ABV well, but the quality just isn't there to justify another purchase.

I suspect it would pair really well with a spicy food. Maybe chicken wings?

Serving type: bottle

12-19-2011 03:57:38 | More by kojevergas
Photo of KTCamm

New Jersey

4.08/5  rDev +6.5%
look: 3.5 | smell: 4.5 | taste: 4 | feel: 4 | overall: 4

Poured from 12 oz bottle into a pint glass - part of my Montana mixer driven back to CT from Chicago.

Medium colorful amber with thick creamy foam. Long lasting. Grapefruit/pine smell. Aromatic. Light malty, heavy hop taste. Lasting bitter. Grapefruit in the taste as well.

Pretty darn tasty, but powerful bitter. Good IPA.

Serving type: bottle

12-03-2011 11:45:49 | More by KTCamm
Photo of rcfunk


4/5  rDev +4.4%
look: 4 | smell: 4 | taste: 4 | feel: 4 | overall: 4

This beer was well carbonated with a solid head that lingered with healthy lacing for quite a while. Amber in color. Piney hop aroma and taste. Good body. Pleasantly lingering bitterness. Overall, I'd say this is a great American IPA

I really liked this beer.

Serving type: bottle

11-22-2011 00:35:34 | More by rcfunk
Photo of D11


4.03/5  rDev +5.2%
look: 4.5 | smell: 4 | taste: 4 | feel: 4 | overall: 4

from bottle into tulip

A- i really enjoyed the appearance. pours a dark amber orange. with a two finger head that lasts somewhat.

S- mostly nice roasted malt. with some hops and a little caramel.

T- the roasted malt dominates the hops pretty much but not in a bad way. also maybe a little caramel.

M- had a great mouthfeel. carbonated just right. not too thin and not dry.

O- i really enjoyed this beer. i thought the dark amber orange was sexy for an ipa. i usually prefer a lot of hops in my beer, but the malt in this was delicious and made up for it not being too hoppy. all around, a very well balanced beer and definately worth trying.

Serving type: bottle

11-16-2011 22:01:56 | More by D11
Photo of JoeAmerican77


3.53/5  rDev -7.8%
look: 4 | smell: 3 | taste: 3.5 | feel: 4.5 | overall: 3.5

S- Light floral, citrusy hop aromas up front, caramel sweetness in the back.

A- Deep translucent and clear amber pour. Small, sticky white head with good retention and lacing

Flavor- A citrus punch in the front, lemons, grapefruit, a resinous character resembling a mild barleywine. Balance is firmly bitter. Finish is clean. Aftertaste lingers with hop resin bitterness.

Feel- Light bodied with spiky carbonation. Hint of warmth.

I like it, drink it a little warmer for those who enjoy caramel and vinous characteristics in there IPA's. Solid rep of the style

Serving type: bottle

11-09-2011 00:20:59 | More by JoeAmerican77
Photo of mulder1010


3.1/5  rDev -19.1%
look: 3 | smell: 3 | taste: 3 | feel: 3 | overall: 3.5

12 oz bottle poured in to a tulip

A-- darker clear shade of orange amber color on pouring. One finger quick fading dirty white head. Much better looking on swirling. Though fades pretty fast. Good ring of lacing on the side of the glass once head faded.

S-- Carmel biscuit nose first, followed by orange, grapefruit, and some lemon peel. Much more about the malts than the hops in this. Gives a good, balanced smell.

T-- Lots of carmel biscuit. Pungent orange taste with backing of lemon and lime. Not a lot of up front bitterness. Pretty balanced really.

M-- Medium body and medium light carbonation. Carmel, orange and lemon really dominate the mid and back palate. Not overly bitter or hoppy. Just balanced. One negative, slightly sweet and syrupy.

O-- Good, easy to drink IPA. A little more obvious Malt backbone than other IPA's but a very solid IPA. Not all that bitter but that is ok. has enough to carry the beer. The sweetness is the biggest issue to the beer but not a bad IPA.

Serving type: bottle

10-28-2011 14:18:07 | More by mulder1010
Photo of angrybabboon

Rhode Island

4/5  rDev +4.4%
look: 4 | smell: 4 | taste: 4 | feel: 4 | overall: 4

Consumed 10/15/11

Appearance: A nice orange-amber color, little white head that is retained pretty well, some nice lacing, mostly clear

Smell: Very malt-forward, biscuity, with some pine and citrus - some floral notes, smells nicely balanced

Taste: Interesting - malts are mostly pale, but also slightly caramel and amber - an unexpected level of malt sweetness and breadiness - very biscuity - nicely balanced by hops, which are remarkably piney - some citrus, too, of course, mostly pith - impressively balanced, not too extreme

Mouthfeel: Medium body, medium carbonation, nicely dry and somewhat smooth

Overall: A solid IPA

So far this is the best thing I've tasted from Big Sky Brewing. It's a nicely balanced IPA thanks to some interesting malts and interesting hops. I would probably drink a lot of this if I was in the distribution area. If I had to compare it to something, I'd say it reminds me of Dark Horse Crooked Tree. Except it's not as good as Crooked Tree. And Crooked Tree isn't as good as Bell's Two Hearted. So it goes.

Serving type: bottle

10-15-2011 06:10:35 | More by angrybabboon
Photo of minterro


3.55/5  rDev -7.3%
look: 4.5 | smell: 3.5 | taste: 3.5 | feel: 3.5 | overall: 3.5

Montana mixer

A & S: earthy hops, citrus, and ‘maltyness’. Large fizzy-foam off-white head. Leaves specks of lacing. The beer is a light mostly transparent copper color

T & M: floral hops and bready malts sums up the taste pretty well, its not super complex. On the low side of medium for body, and medium carbonation.

O: good but nothing special

Serving type: bottle

10-01-2011 03:07:43 | More by minterro
Photo of dansmcd


3.95/5  rDev +3.1%
look: 4 | smell: 4 | taste: 4 | feel: 3.5 | overall: 4

A - Golden amber, crystal clear and fizzy, a fat finger of dirty white head perched on top.

S - Typical IPA aromas of tropical fruit and pine. Simcoe hops are prominant. Moderate malt profile.

T - Clean flavours of grass, pine and citrus. Some caramel sweetness.

M - Medium in body, oily. Well carbonated. Dry finish.

O - Another excellent American IPA. Well balanced between expressive hops and malt flavour.

Serving type: bottle

09-29-2011 03:07:29 | More by dansmcd
Photo of mikesgroove

South Carolina

3.95/5  rDev +3.1%
look: 4 | smell: 4 | taste: 4 | feel: 3.5 | overall: 4

amber color with a touch of gold highlights was well carbonated. Nice head of white pops up quickly and leaves a good bit of side glass lacing as it works its way down. Light pine and orange peel are mixed in with a very bready, biscuit like aroma, though it could have been a bit stronger. Smooth, bit heavier body here, but well carbonated took a bit away from the crispness of it and the bready flavor really seemed to take control of it mid way through. Light dry finish

Serving type: bottle

09-18-2011 03:10:53 | More by mikesgroove
Photo of pBRale


4.22/5  rDev +10.2%
look: 4.5 | smell: 4.5 | taste: 4 | feel: 4 | overall: 4.5

From tasting notes on 9-11-11

Appearance: Beautiful amber color, big frothy off white head that settles fairly quickly and leaves a moderately heavy lace.

Smell: A bouquet of hoppy aromas: grapefruit, other citrus, and flowery hop scents, and a sweet hint of malts.

Taste: Taste is of grapefruit, decent malts to balance, bitter crisp hoppy finish--grassy hops with an earthy and piney twinge.

Mouthfeel: Medium body, medium carbonation, crisp, refreshing. Super drinkable.

Overall: Great smelling and tasting beer. Very tasty indeed.

Serving type: bottle

09-17-2011 03:03:47 | More by pBRale
Photo of RunForYourBeer


3.9/5  rDev +1.8%
look: 4 | smell: 3.5 | taste: 4 | feel: 4 | overall: 4

A: Dark orange with a medium off white head.

S: Lemony citrus with some piney hops and light, bready malt.

T: Lots of citrus and pine hop with some grapefruit. Light bread malt in the finish.

M: Light with some carbonation.

O: Good IPA. Wish it was easier to get.

Serving type: bottle

09-14-2011 00:03:56 | More by RunForYourBeer
Photo of ADZA


3.95/5  rDev +3.1%
look: 4 | smell: 4 | taste: 4 | feel: 3.5 | overall: 4

Pours a translucent deep copper hue which leaves creamy two finger head and heaps of lacing,the smell is a mix of sweet toffee malts and piney hops but mainly sweet with also a mix of citrus,the mouthfeel is just over light bodied and very sessionable with tastes of sweet toffee,piney hops,pineapple,paw-paw and finished with a bittersweet citrus hit and overall im glad ive tried and like most AIPA's we get these days from the USA its definately above average and would buy again cheers.

Serving type: bottle

09-13-2011 10:14:18 | More by ADZA
Photo of setexascustoms


4.28/5  rDev +11.7%
look: 4 | smell: 4.5 | taste: 4.5 | feel: 3.5 | overall: 4

Bottle into a pint glass

A- A deep clear copper, one finger of off white foamy head and nice lacing.

S- Aromatic with citric and pineapple. Herbal hops and a slight malty sweetnes.

T- Citrus rind and zest, some pine and a nice balanced malt sweetness. A little dry and slight bitterness stays till the next sip.

M- On the lighter side with an astringent dryness. Pleasant but different.

O- A lovely IPA, among my favorites. Very balanced and refreshing, I could definitely enjoy more than one and would recommend it without hesitation.

Serving type: bottle

09-12-2011 23:09:30 | More by setexascustoms
Big Sky IPA from Big Sky Brewing Company
86 out of 100 based on 854 ratings.