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Bad Elf - Ridgeway Brewing

Not Rated.
Bad ElfBad Elf

Displayed for educational use only; do not reuse.
BA SCORE
81
good

375 Ratings
THE BROS
-
no score

(send 'em beer!)
Ratings: 375
Reviews: 236
rAvg: 3.56
pDev: 14.89%
Wants: 3
Gots: 7 | FT: 1
Brewed by:
Ridgeway Brewing visit their website
United Kingdom (England)

Style | ABV
English India Pale Ale (IPA) |  6.00% ABV

Availability: Winter

Notes/Commercial Description:
No notes at this time.

(Beer added by: Loki on 11-26-2003)
Beer: Ratings & Reviews
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Ratings: 375 | Reviews: 236 | Display Reviews Only:
Photo of tgbljb
4.47/5  rDev +25.6%
look: 4 | smell: 4.5 | taste: 4.5 | feel: 4.5 | overall: 4.5

Poured a perfectly crystal clear medium amber color. Head is a slightly creamy off-white and has slowly fallen to a thick ring with light surface coating. Nice creamy lacing on the side of the glass. Smell is hoppy with many citrus and piney notes to be found. Some summer fruitiness also present to form a nice combination with thhops. Initial taste is a medium bitterness that almost immediately fades to allow some fruity maltiness to show through. Very smooth and creamy mouthfeel. Finish is a moderate dry bitterness that definitely beckons for another taste, whicj I will gladly satisfy. Some alcohol also begins to show itself at the ending with a nice warm feeling in the mouth. Very drinkable and superbly enjoyable. This is really an excellent beer. (And the label is nice too)

tgbljb, Mar 06, 2006
Photo of NeroFiddled
4.45/5  rDev +25%
look: 3.5 | smell: 4.5 | taste: 4.5 | feel: 4.5 | overall: 4.5

A rough pour brings up an inch thick head of frothy white foam that receeds to a shorter but denser, creamy layer in a few moments. The trade-off, however, is that it disturbs the yeast sediment and leaves it's golden-amber body somewhat hazy. Still, tiny bubbles are clearly visible climbing slowly towards the surface. What remains of the head leaves some nice lace about the glass, and overall, it's a very nice appearance. Hops are clear in the nose with a brightly citrus and piney character. It's bold, fresh, and inviting - the way a real ale should be! The body is medium; and it's very fine and natural (bottle conditioned), restrained carbonation is just lightly tingly on the tongue before fading away smooth. The flavor delivers the lemony-citrus and resiny spruce/pine-like hop flavors promised by the nose over a biscuity malt. A bold bitterness balances, and its fades away dry with a quick flash of juicy fruitiness followed by a residual note of bitterness in the aftertaste. Quite impressive!

NeroFiddled, Dec 21, 2003
Photo of Bighuge
4.43/5  rDev +24.4%
look: 4 | smell: 4.5 | taste: 4.5 | feel: 4 | overall: 4.5

Slightly hazed light amber tone. Small and disjointed bone white head. After a minute, a thin rimming is all that's left. The aroma is strong and upfront. And quite nice. Citrusy, resiny, pungent, mint and bigtime Bubblegum. The taste is stylin. This has got to be the most hopped up UK beer I've ever had. You'd guess it was from the West Coast USA if you didn't know better. The hop flavors are pungent and somewhat raw....bitter and piney...smoky and cannabis like...resiny and ctitc. Damn, this is pretty good. The malt backing proves to be more than capable and is toffee based. Body is a little better than medium and this beer flows over the tongue with ease. The one negative is the price tag...5.39 for 16.9 oz. It's good, but I can find IPAs from this country just as good for lesser $$$$. Glad I tried it once though.

Bighuge, Dec 30, 2003
Photo of tugdriver7
4.4/5  rDev +23.6%
look: 4.5 | smell: 4 | taste: 4.5 | feel: 4.5 | overall: 4.5

Another "Beer of the Month" sample. Had I not known this was from England, I would have assumed it to be a domestic craft beer. The beer surprised me. Medium "orange" in color with tiny bubbles streaming up the side of the glass, it poured with a smooth textured head that fell quickly and lace the glass. A definite hop presence in the nose, and the taste was at first malt then a definitive hop flavor that stopped just short of overpowering. A very fresh tasting, smooth, drinkable IPA. When I saw "Winter Ale" I expected something a bit darker and maltier. This was a refreshing surprise. And an import no less. Definitely one to watch for.

tugdriver7, Jan 28, 2007
Photo of willmc
4.38/5  rDev +23%
look: 4 | smell: 4 | taste: 4.5 | feel: 4.5 | overall: 4.5

on sight a nice pale amber, almost golden color. a good inch white head that lingers for a short while, small traces of lacing. aromas of fruity sweet malt. tastes a touch sweet at first, hops on the finish, with hints of carmel somewhere in the middle. overall i was suprised by this beer. i mainly bought it for the label and name, so Bad Elf is actually pretty good. cheers!

willmc, Dec 01, 2009
Photo of Loki
4.33/5  rDev +21.6%
look: 4 | smell: 4 | taste: 4.5 | feel: 4 | overall: 4.5

The first gift, for the States anyway, from Peter Scholey and his new brewery Ridgeway Brewing. Shelton Brothers delivered this gift to the States wrapped in an Imperial Pint bottle. The card on the present (Shelton Bros. website) said this gift was a IPA/Hoppy Beer, Winter/Holiday Beer so I didn't know what category to put this present in. However, the noticible absense of any strong spices lead me to put it in the IPA category. This beer is bottle conditioned and has some yeast sediment.

Appearance: After unwrapping this gift from it's large brown bottle it poured a crystal clear dark, golden honey color with a wispy, thin, white head that disappates to a spotty cover quickly. However, the lack of head did not affect the lacing in any way. Sheets and webs of lacing all around the glass, clining definantly to the sides. I would have rated the appearance much higher except for the nearly complete lack of head. The wrapping recommended leaving some in the bottle for the Elves, which I did and still ended up with some yeast sediment in the glass, not that I'm complaining. I was amazed that the sediment was not noticible in the glass and did not affect the clarity of the beer.

Smell: This present also came with a wonderful bouquet of floral hops, malt, and minerals with a grassy tinge. Almost a wildflower fragrance to the floral tones. I did notice an absence of cinnamon and clove that I expected, but I did detect some nutmeg. The minerals come off with dry earthy smell. Very reminicent of a traditional English cask ale.

Taste: English malt is the first gift of flavor to the tongue. Followed by a shower of minerals and floral, grassy hops. Dry mineral present came in the middle and one the end, very similiar to a true English cask ale. The last present is a slightly bitter, dry taste and clean finish. This present transports me to an English Pub during the holiday. A great escape and a great beer.

Loki, Nov 26, 2003
Photo of gentlebubbles
4.33/5  rDev +21.6%
look: 4.5 | smell: 4 | taste: 4 | feel: 5 | overall: 5

on cask at Spuytin Duyvil

Lovely toast color under light, coarse froth. High head that doesn't leave any mark on the glass. Citrus aroma. Lemony resin in the finish. Perfectly tender mouthfeel. Lemon and grapefruit over slight toasty malt. Simple, clean flavors. Overall, so light and lovely, that despite all the other fantastic beers in this place, I must have another .

gentlebubbles, Dec 22, 2004
Photo of beerking1
4.33/5  rDev +21.6%
look: 4 | smell: 4 | taste: 4.5 | feel: 4 | overall: 4.5

Pours a dark gold, very clear, with a small but persistent white head. Aroma is crystal malt, with subtle butterscotch and hints of earthy yeastiness, all mingling with rustic British hops. Flavor is strong caramel upfront, balanced with a pleasant hoppy bite, and with some distinct but pleasant butterscotch in the background. Finish is very clean, with a hoppy aftertaste leaving you wanting more. Alcohol is strong, but blends well and is not at all unpleasant. Overall, a very well balanced beer.

beerking1, Dec 15, 2007
Photo of joshstevens87
4.3/5  rDev +20.8%
look: 3.5 | smell: 4 | taste: 4.5 | feel: 4 | overall: 4.5

A- ours a light orange with a nice 1/2 inch white head which leaves lacing as you drink it
S-citrusy hops dominating with the malt contributing a sweet fruityness and a small hint of alcohol in the background
T-citrusy hops with malt contributing a sweet fruityness and slew of flavor (orange to vanilla) with a bit more alcohol presence then one is used to at 6% overall a wonderful complex beer
M-medium body with a light carbonation giving a very smooth almost liquid bread feel to the mouth
D-between its complex taste easy drinking body this beer is very drinkable i wouldn't mind drinking it all night

joshstevens87, Jan 15, 2010
Photo of whynot44
4.28/5  rDev +20.2%
look: 4 | smell: 4.5 | taste: 4.5 | feel: 3.5 | overall: 4

Very nice cloudy apricot color with a decent white head that disipates slowly and leaves some nice lace.

The aroma is pine needles and biscuits with a hint of citrus.

The taste starts with a hit of piney hops. A decent biscuity malt base registers in the middle, although still dominated by the hops. The finish is more pine hops with a touch of grapefuit that lingers on. An English IPA for the hop heads!

Very similar to some west coast brews but still fairly smooth and very easy to drink. Medium bodied and decently filling but not heavy. You may want several..

whynot44, Nov 14, 2005
Photo of nickthetick
4.25/5  rDev +19.4%
look: 3.5 | smell: 4.5 | taste: 4.5 | feel: 3.5 | overall: 4

A: pours a light gold into my duvel tulip with a white head that slowly dissipates.

S: a lot of malt and hops mixed. There's a lot of biscuity malt mixed with a fair amount hop citrus hop.

T: the taste is a little more toned down. The malt is a lot more up front and the hops is just there. Its good just not what I expected from the nose.

MF: light body and refreshing.

D: a nice seasonal but there are that are better. I'll pick this up, but not in great qualities.

nickthetick, Feb 12, 2011
Photo of ABOWMan
4.25/5  rDev +19.4%
look: 4.5 | smell: 4 | taste: 4.5 | feel: 4 | overall: 4

Appearance: Light amber in color. Very nice three inch head of frothy white head.

Smell: Earthy smell of an old basement (in a good way). Sweet notes of spice.

Mouthfeel: Very full mouthfeel due to the ample head which leaves nice lacing on the glass.

Drinkability: What's not to like about this English Ale. Open and drink another.

ABOWMan, Jan 23, 2009
Photo of Billolick
4.22/5  rDev +18.5%
look: 4 | smell: 3.5 | taste: 4.5 | feel: 4 | overall: 4.5

On tap at the Blind Tiger in NYC. Bartender Kate told me this one was "a little flat" I saw it as simply on the low carbonation side and that was just fine. Poured light honey golden amber, Mildly hoppy nose, minor head, natch, and no lacing. Agressivly hopped for a British IPA, thats a good thing!, Grainy hops evident and fresh tasting. Overlaid on a nice biscuity malt base. Long malty finish. Tasty and very pleasant, Brit brew with pleanty of character, I havent tried it in bottles, but the tap version is deserving of a try or two If you find it on at your local.

Billolick, Jul 22, 2005
Photo of cokes
4.22/5  rDev +18.5%
look: 4 | smell: 3.5 | taste: 4.5 | feel: 4 | overall: 4.5

Ah, they've turned the tables on us.
Plenty of USA-brewed "english" IPAs. Now comes the Union Jack posing as Uncle Sam.

Well, not quite. But close.

Hazy goldenrod with a miniature cream-colored topping.
Nose of shaven lemons and wet iron.
Initially, this screams Cali. Loads of citrus. Orange peels, lemon peels, lime peels and grapfruit peels. Sticky-fingered Mary Jane.
Oh yeah, there's a toasty caramel, bready malt backing.

But Dude/Chap, screw the malts on this one. For real. They're there. They work. Whatever. Good enough.

Back to the hops. Citric hues shift more and more towards lemon as this warms. Buttery hues arrise, but are staved off acidicly. Suddenly this returns to its heritage. A large slap of mineral-laden water. Hopping surges towards bitter, savory herbs and cold steel. It sticks here, and rides itself out, with minor relapses of Americana.

For you main-lining hopheads that thought the UK couldn't brew something to cure your hop-induced tremors. Find this.

cokes, Dec 06, 2003
Photo of nortmand
4.22/5  rDev +18.5%
look: 4.5 | smell: 4.5 | taste: 4 | feel: 4 | overall: 4.5

Pours light amber with a long lasting fluffy head.

Solid citrus hoppiness in the nose, supported by some biscuity caramel sweetness.

Sweet biscuit in the tip of the tongue turns into a nice full flavored hoppy graininess. Hops are all citrus, very borderline American flavor.

Overall, a solid, medium bodied beer, very drinkable, but somewhat expensive.

nortmand, Nov 28, 2006
Photo of battlekow
4.22/5  rDev +18.5%
look: 3.5 | smell: 4.5 | taste: 4 | feel: 4.5 | overall: 4.5

Bad Elf initially smells like it's trying desperately to express some malts, tyrannically oppressed by the evil floral hops. The nose mellows and balances as the beer warms a bit, allowing a scent of spiced apples to escape. Tastes quite crisp, lots of hop flavor with, as they say, a strong malt backbone. A slightly unpleasant "off" flavor in the finish.

I've never had any aged SN Celebration, but Bad Elf seems like what I figure a few years would do to that beer, mellowing it out. I like it. Quite drinkable.

battlekow, Nov 05, 2005
Photo of russpowell
4.2/5  rDev +18%
look: 3.5 | smell: 3.5 | taste: 4.5 | feel: 4 | overall: 4.5

Pours gloden/bronze with a 3 fingers of fluffy offwhite head. Some lacing & fair head retention

S: Grapefruitty hops

T: Citrussy & piney hops up front, then fruittness fill in around the hops. As this warms I get breadyness. Hops profile melows as this continues to warm. Finishes with honey malt, citric hops & fruittyness

MF: Low carbonation, good balance & medium bodied

Drank very easy, a bit pricey at $6 a pint. One of the better UK imports I've hade in a long while

russpowell, Jan 25, 2007
Photo of scaliasux
4.2/5  rDev +18%
look: 4 | smell: 3.5 | taste: 4 | feel: 5 | overall: 5

Appearance - Clear amber. Tall slightly off-white head with some staying power. Pretty good.

Smell - Moderately strong floral hop aroma dominates.

Taste - Moderately sweet malt that melts into a nice sour hop finish.

Mouthfeel - Medium to full body, smooth. Very nice.

Drinkability - Good beer. Finds a nice balance, not too sweet, not overly hoppy. Plus it has plenty of alchol for a long winter's night. Mildly amusing Chrismas theme is a plus.

scaliasux, Feb 25, 2007
Photo of allengarvin
4.2/5  rDev +18%
look: 3.5 | smell: 4 | taste: 4.5 | feel: 4 | overall: 4

Clear copper color, low head and very slight lacing. Quite estery aroma, with a touch of spicy hops as well. Sweet malt and a large hop bouquet meet on the first taste; hops taste nutty, pine-like, slightly citrus. Moderately-high bitterness and a well-rounded fruitiness are also present. The finish is noticibly dry. Carbonation is a bit low, giving a thin mouthfeel, but this is typical for many English beers.

A high quality beer. I'd love to try a cask-conditioned version of this.

allengarvin, Jan 02, 2006
Photo of ngandhi
4.2/5  rDev +18%
look: 4 | smell: 4.5 | taste: 4 | feel: 4 | overall: 4.5

Sweet citric melon nose and palette reminiscent of some very select Australian (and occassionally New Zealand) Sauvignon Blancs. There's a latent Amarillo/Cascade meets Styrian Goldings finish and bittering with a pleasant hint of grain. This brew is notorious for its high hopping rate, but I can tell you for certain that it's mostly late-boil. The result is a medium-light bodied, fruity British-style ale that balances the grain heartiness of a late fall harvest with the delicate scents of spring.

Relax, relax.
ng

ngandhi, Dec 01, 2003
Photo of peabody
4.18/5  rDev +17.4%
look: 4 | smell: 4 | taste: 4.5 | feel: 3.5 | overall: 4

I might be rating this a little high cause I have had some pretty bad beers lately.
Pours out a cloudy amber with 2 fingers of off-white suds and nice lacing.
Smell of fresh lime and orange peel abound here.The Hops are a hoppin' and the ginger snap aroma is here. Mabey just a tad of alcohol is present.
Overall a great beer and a very nice presentation.
I like it a lot.

peabody, Jan 01, 2007
Photo of acrawf6
4.18/5  rDev +17.4%
look: 4 | smell: 4 | taste: 4.5 | feel: 4.5 | overall: 3.5

Poured out a rich goldish-orange with a creamy half inch head that is slight yellowish.

Smells lightly hoppy with lemon citrus notes. I cant smell too much from it, but my allergies are kicking up, so im sure that has a lot to do with it.

Taste is quite refreshing. its a light american ipa. Citrusy hops jump right out. I cant help but think of a hefe-weisse while i drink this. I can even taste a touch of cloves in this. Such a delicate, crisp flavor that i certainly could have cravings for when i dont want hops in my face.

Mouthfeel is interesting and nice. A light carbonation to this that i think helps with the crisp flavor. I can let it sit on my tongue all day.

Overall, I did can really dig this beer. But at almost $5 a bottle, i might pass in the future. Also, saying a winter's ale on the bottle made me think it was a winter warmer, which it is not. I think i would enjoy this more on a hot day.

acrawf6, Jan 10, 2006
Photo of ellisdee97
4.18/5  rDev +17.4%
look: 4.5 | smell: 3.5 | taste: 4 | feel: 4.5 | overall: 5

A: Pours a light perfectly clear brown with tinges of yellow and orange. A nice column of bubbles rise within and a nice light white head quickly dissipates leaving a nice bubbly ring. Very sticky lacing lingers through to the end.

S: Nice floral hop aroma up front. Orange peel and lemon zest. Some toasted malt and slight fruit.

T: Taste is reminiscent of a nicely hopped lager. Sweet toasted malt, and a taste of orange sherbert. Spicy hops with hints of orange and lemon zest.

M: Full bodied almost syrupy, with a sweet dry finish.

D:Excellent cold weather brew.

ellisdee97, Jan 16, 2007
Photo of brewdlyhooked13
4.15/5  rDev +16.6%
look: 4 | smell: 4 | taste: 4 | feel: 4.5 | overall: 4.5

Appearance - a hazy orange topaz color. Maybe 4 fingers of head of suds up top. Took several minutes to squeeze the rest of the bottle into the glass. Finally, there's about a finger's worth of stiff foam resting above the glass like a crown. My bottle rested a while so the yeast was fairly caked on the bottom, allowing minimal sediment into my glass.

Aroma - orange and pine with a spicy, peppery bite.

Taste - robust hop flavor, full of citrus and pine without much bitterness. After the swallow, the taste turns grapefruit and lemon rind, showing some typical dry bitterness on the finish.

Mouthfeel - smooth and crisp, not very oily or resinous.

Drinkability - a great beer that would be tasty any time of year.

brewdlyhooked13, Dec 16, 2004
Photo of cleverbeername
4.15/5  rDev +16.6%
look: 3.5 | smell: 4 | taste: 4.5 | feel: 3.5 | overall: 4

dimpled beer goblet

55-60*

A lagerish look, not sort of true gold color with mini swirls of oj color (reminds me of *sp blanche de brussels). avg. head, very white

S wit, dry, citrus notes of tangerine and orange zest. nice hop character.

T hoppy, dry, sweet and sour. Sour dough bread notes. its sort of perplexing, and takes awhile to pinpoint whats going on, but in a good way.

M sits pretty nice in the palate, but not super impressive for style

D Im going to want one of these yearly around dec. Im looking forward to trying the rest. its a nice package.

cleverbeername, Jan 10, 2010
Bad Elf from Ridgeway Brewing
81 out of 100 based on 375 ratings.