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Bad Elf - Ridgeway Brewing

Bad ElfBad Elf

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

355 Ratings
THE BROS
-
no score

(send 'em beer!)
Ratings: 355
Reviews: 236
rAvg: 3.56
pDev: 15.17%


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)
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Ratings: 355 | Reviews: 236 | Show All Ratings:
Photo of mdfb79
mdfb79

New York

2.95/5  rDev -17.1%
look: 3 | smell: 3 | taste: 3 | feel: 2.5 | overall: 3

Poured from a 16.9 oz. bottle into a pint glass.

a - A orangish-copper color that is somewhat transparent. Almost no head but an insane amount of carbonation; the most I've ever seen in a beer.

s - Smells sweet, as well as piney hops, some citrus fruits.

t - Taste is alittle lacking, but hints of piney hops and some citrus fruits/orange. Not overly impressive.

m - Light body with way too much carbonation. Carbonation keeps it from being too enjoyable.

d - Overall this isn't bad, but it isn't great either. Way too much carbonation and the taste was lacking, but I could see a less carbonated bottle being easier to drink. Probably would not try and buy again.

Serving type: bottle

02-11-2010 00:57:37 | More by mdfb79
Photo of kojevergas
kojevergas

Texas

2.63/5  rDev -26.1%
look: 3 | smell: 3.5 | taste: 2.5 | feel: 2.5 | overall: 2

50cl bottle served into a transparent hard plastic cup at me friend's gaff in Palo Alto, California. Acquired at a local BevMo. Reviewed from notes.

A: Pours a 1.5 finger head of slight cream, fair thickness, and decent retention. Colour is a nontransparent orange-copper.

Sm: Butterscotch (diacetyl?), cream, pleasant buttery malts, and clean barley. A moderate strength aroma.

T: A bit buttery in terms of malt, but clean and enjoyable, if simple. Not real well balanced, but built fairly well (albeit far off style). Not as hoppy as the label would like us to believe. A bit bland and disappointing. Light honey is a nice touch.

Mf: Sharp but smooth and wet. A touch too heavy on the palate. Fairly complementary of the flavours.

Dr: Decently drinkable. I wouldn't have it again; it's too simple and bland - especially for the style.

Serving type: bottle

02-19-2012 03:21:51 | More by kojevergas
Photo of Billolick
Billolick

New York

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.

Serving type: on-tap

07-22-2005 11:01:27 | More by Billolick
Photo of rhoadsrage
rhoadsrage

Illinois

3.68/5  rDev +3.4%
look: 4 | smell: 4 | taste: 3.5 | feel: 3 | overall: 4

(Served in an imperial pint glass)

A- This beer pours a nice copper color with a creamy light tan head of rocky bubbles on top. The body is crystal clear with some gentle bubbles floating to the surface.

S- The smell of green floral hops with a hint of pine is strong but in the background there is a note of slightly toasted fresh grain.

T- This beer has a soft smooth pale malt flavor with some slight caramel malt hints. The finish is a nice smooth piney and noble hop finish. The malt flavor is missing those subtle nuances that English IPAs have but the hops has a good complexity.

M- The mouthfeel is a medium-light feel but the texture is pretty watery. No alcohol warmth or astringency.

D- This is a nice smooth English style IPA. It would be nice with a bit more body and if the malt had a bit more depth to enhance the hops. Very quaftable non the less.

Serving type: bottle

12-19-2005 04:32:17 | More by rhoadsrage
Photo of jdhilt
jdhilt

New Hampshire

2.38/5  rDev -33.1%
look: 3.5 | smell: 2.5 | taste: 2 | feel: 3 | overall: 2.5

Pours with a two-finger white head that stays and leaves a nice lace. Nearly clear, golden amber color and nose is seriously hoppy. Medium bodied. Starts hoppy, finishes bitter. Unusual for a winter ale (no spices) but the label points out that they are heavy handed with the hops. $3.99 for 500ml.

Serving type: bottle

03-06-2004 00:02:21 | More by jdhilt
Photo of Wasatch
Wasatch

Utah

3.88/5  rDev +9%
look: 3.5 | smell: 3.5 | taste: 4 | feel: 4 | overall: 4

Pours a nice clean/clear golden color, nice carbonation, nice little white creamy head, which leaves some nice sticky lacing around the edges. The nose is malty, slight hop, and lots of caramel. The taste is mostly malty, with some hops thrown in, and caramel. This is a very nice English IPA. Slightly sweet too. Medium body. Drinkable, recommended.

Serving type: bottle

11-27-2007 00:47:39 | More by Wasatch
Photo of wl0307
wl0307

United Kingdom (England)

4.1/5  rDev +15.2%
look: 4 | smell: 4.5 | taste: 4 | feel: 4 | overall: 4

BBE 07/03/07.
A: pours a clear, amber hue with strong dark orangey hint, the white beer head is fluffy and dissipates rather fast, leaving sparse lacing on the sides of the glass; fairly lively body with constant streams of mini-bubbles ascending.
S: fruit-esters prevail from the first second onwards…exotic fruity (incl. orange), spicy (coriander seed-like) and yeasty with a touch of candy-sugar almost like a lesser version of an aromatic Belgian pale ale(!), while a deeply malty overtone assumes at the back with lots of honeyish aroma buttressing it. Overall the aroma is not explosive, but at a closer sniff all the complex elements of aroma quietly but surely assert themselves. Excellent!
T: semi-thick texture of juicy pale malts come hand in hand with an initially spicy, piney, and dried tea-leaf like bitterness upfront, immediately followed by a flow of magnifying, slightly oily, orange-fruity hoppyness flooding all over the palate, causing a slightly pungent bite and dryish mouthfeel felt strongly esp. on the wings of the deep end of the tongue. The lingering, hard (by standards of English ales), and only faintly fruity hoppyness, combined with the underlying bitterness, makes an everlasting semi-tannic and slightly tangy aftertaste almost like chewing a mouthful of a kind of Chinese fruit snack--dried, lightly-sweetened citrus zest, plus a pinch of bitter herbs.
M&D: the initially smooth mouthfeel is balanced with the subsequent overwhelming bitterness and hops. Very satisfyingly hoppy strong ale, though I’d expect its body to be a bit more rounded and better-balanced with more assertive malts, suppose in one more year of ageing it could just be like that?! Shall buy another bottle and age it. Solid brew!

Serving type: bottle

12-03-2005 02:48:42 | More by wl0307
Photo of plaid75
plaid75

New York

3.25/5  rDev -8.7%
look: 4 | smell: 4 | taste: 3 | feel: 3 | overall: 3

Poured a light copper hue with a one finger foamy white head. There was good retention and sticky lacing.

The smell featured an upfront spicy hop with traces of clove.

The taste consisted of some light biscuity malts, some herbal hops but and some decent winter spice, but was way too harsh in its bitterness. The typical English green apple flavor made its appearance. It must be me, because I cannot stand this flavor and this is the reason I avoid English ales altogether. I am hoping it is me, or at least it is a phenomenon limited to bottled ales.

The mouthfeel was of average fullnes but adversely affected by the aforemnetioned rind-like bitterness.

Overall an attractive and aromatice ale. The flavor and drinkablilty suffer from the acridness.

Serving type: bottle

12-31-2007 00:57:12 | More by plaid75
Photo of Bighuge
Bighuge

Minnesota

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.

Serving type: bottle

12-30-2003 06:17:32 | More by Bighuge
Photo of beerthulhu
beerthulhu

New Jersey

3.5/5  rDev -1.7%
look: 3.5 | smell: 3.5 | taste: 3.5 | feel: 3.5 | overall: 3.5

A: Poured a clear, bright, and crisp golden peach color with orange hues. A one finger cream-beige colored head sits atop that was bubbly and lasted for several minutes. Visible carbonation was faint while a nice spiderweb lacing was left behind.

S: fruity with fresh oranges and apples with a perfumy hopping.

T: a light lemon breadiness and orange flavor opens things up. There was a spiciness of apples and a pretty good floral hopping. Some alcohol detection with a slight orange sourness was also detected. The flavor was moderatly good, though maybe not so much per style. A nice malting though not a lot of spices. Some citrusy grapefruit, pale grains, with a touch of cinnamon linger about but not enough to make a difference overall.

M: light, very smooth with a extremely soft carbonation. An slightly above average xmas drink.

D: Easy to put down especially at 6.0% which drinks quite well though was only moderatly exciting.

Serving type: bottle

12-07-2008 13:36:59 | More by beerthulhu
Photo of Gusler
Gusler

Arizona

4.03/5  rDev +13.2%
look: 3.5 | smell: 4 | taste: 4 | feel: 3.5 | overall: 4.5

Upon the pour from the 500ml brown bottle, the beer appears a slightly hazy golden amber with a modest off white head that settles quickly, leaving a thin coating of lace upon the glass. Nose has a nice sweet malt aroma, with a pleasant hop flowery tone, citrus like crispness, also a wee bit of bread dough. Front has a delightful malt presence, the hops as spicy as any American IPA, top is medium in feel. Finish has a brisk acidity, the hops pound your taste buds, and the dry aftertaste coats your palate, a “Damn Good” IPA.

Serving type: bottle

10-22-2007 18:43:36 | More by Gusler
Photo of Georgiabeer
Georgiabeer

Georgia

3.78/5  rDev +6.2%
look: 3.5 | smell: 3.5 | taste: 4 | feel: 4 | overall: 3.5

Eh. This beer is more of a gimmick than anything else, but its not bad. Its just that there are so many other Christmas beers that are better. Pours amber with a head that quickly settles to a thin ring. Smells of sweet malt and alcohol. Fruity with apple and apricot as well in the nose. Taste has flavors similar to the aromas with the addition of a fairly substantial breadiness. Plum, apple, and apricot flavors with a slightly bitter finish round it out. Mouthfeel is crisp with a creamy finish. Tastes a little hot and not very well integrated to make this highly drinkable.

Serving type: bottle

12-22-2007 00:36:35 | More by Georgiabeer
Photo of beertunes
beertunes

Washington

3.68/5  rDev +3.4%
look: 3.5 | smell: 3.5 | taste: 4 | feel: 3 | overall: 3.5

Poured into 10oz glass. Poured a slightly cloudy golden yellow with just a thin cap of white head that had no retention but left moderate lacing.

The aroma is very subdued, but still has a pleasing hop presence. The flavors are similar, not much malt foundation and a smooth, balanced hop profile.

The body was typical for the style and drinkability was a little better than average. Overall, a very solid, enjoyable brew. Worth trying if you see it.

Serving type: bottle

12-06-2009 03:33:37 | More by beertunes
Photo of Tone
Tone

Missouri

3.7/5  rDev +3.9%
look: 4 | smell: 3.5 | taste: 3 | feel: 4.5 | overall: 5

Pours a clear golden color. 1/4 inch head with decent retention and decent lacing. A thin film remains throughout the entire beer. Smells of sweet malt, some slight spice, a hint of fruit, and some yeast cleanliness. Fits the style of an English IPA, if not a weak example. Mouth feel is smooth and crisp with a high level of carbonation. Tastes of sweet malt upfront, yeast flavors throughout, slight roasted malt in the background, sand some slight hops. Overall, a little weak in the hops than I'd expect and a little watered down. Still a pretty decent beer that's really easy to drink.

Serving type: bottle

02-10-2009 02:15:12 | More by Tone
Photo of OWSLEY069
OWSLEY069

Pennsylvania

2.15/5  rDev -39.6%
look: 3 | smell: 2.5 | taste: 2 | feel: 2 | overall: 2

Pours a clean golden orange-ish color with a white head. In the aroma, a sweet maltiness. In the taste, sweet maltiness again and kind of skunky even. A smooth, watery malt mouthfeel and a small dry malty aftertaste. Name sell this one, just an English ale, but not that great of an English ale.

Serving type: bottle

12-22-2007 01:38:57 | More by OWSLEY069
Photo of Cyberkedi
Cyberkedi

Georgia

3.75/5  rDev +5.3%
look: 3 | smell: 3.5 | taste: 4 | feel: 4 | overall: 3.5

This brew pours a nice orangy amber with a thick white head. Although it is an IPA, the aroma is surprisingly malty, with just a touch of sweetness. Flavor is richly hoppy, with a strong malt component, a hint of fruity sweetness, and only a whisper of hop bitterness. It goes down smoothly but with a good alcohol edge and a hoppy, mildly bitter aftertaste.

Serving type: bottle

02-17-2008 19:49:04 | More by Cyberkedi
Photo of largadeer
largadeer

California

3.18/5  rDev -10.7%
look: 3.5 | smell: 3.5 | taste: 3 | feel: 3.5 | overall: 3

Copper colored with a slight haze. A gentle pour creates a thin half-inch head that shows decent retention. Fruity English ale yeast aroma; fresh stonefruit, bread, a bit of buttery diacetyl and earthy hops. Palate is decent, fruity and buttery flavors are prominent with an earthy hop note beneath. Bitterness is moderate, a little astringent and at odds with the diacetyl. Not a bad beer, but I wouldn't want to drink a full pint.

Serving type: bottle

08-31-2010 23:08:25 | More by largadeer
Photo of twiggamortis420
twiggamortis420

Texas

4.08/5  rDev +14.6%
look: 4.5 | smell: 4 | taste: 4 | feel: 3.5 | overall: 4.5

Poured into a Spaten tulip glass an uber-clear deep golden color with a fluffy white 2-finger head. Nice retention and lacing.

I smell minerals, raisins, plums, red grapes and sweet light malts. Smells good, but different and lighter than most winter warmers (as the label indicates). Hops get lost in the shuffle and the maltiness is light and tangy rather than dark and roasty.

Flavors are heavy on the light fruits...pears and grapes especially. I get some honey in there as well. Has the typical low carbonation of an English ale. Finishes clean and dry, but the taste is not really that bitter, more of a balancing hop presence. Damn close to having a soured beer flavor with all the fruits and acidity (thats a good thing for me). Thin bodied, but is a very relaxing and yummy beer. Appears to be a bit of Belgian influence here. A solid beer, but I dont like the 'winter warmer' claim on the label.

Serving type: bottle

01-24-2009 19:57:09 | More by twiggamortis420
Photo of stcules
stcules

Italy

3.9/5  rDev +9.6%
look: 3 | smell: 3.5 | taste: 4 | feel: 3.5 | overall: 4.5

Light copper color, half finger of foam.
English smell, with tea and orange marmelade, very fresh. Delicate hop.
Orange marmelade in the taste, too, with spiciness, and a good and fresh hop.
There is a good maltiness, well balanced from the hop.
Strong hop aftertaste.
Good. I want another one.

Serving type: bottle

11-10-2007 13:14:35 | More by stcules
Photo of GarthDanielson
GarthDanielson

North Carolina

3.7/5  rDev +3.9%
look: 4 | smell: 3.5 | taste: 4 | feel: 3 | overall: 3.5

Poured from a bottle into a tumbler pint, the beer is a bright, vibrant, honey-gold coloring with no head. Aromas of dry, light hops, with an effervescent feel. Lemony citrus highlights on the nose, with a rich malt character, as well. The beer's flavors are light at first, with a dry, peppery hopping on the tongue, followed by a more full, robust, roasted taste that leads to a slight, sweet, malt flavor. Light bodied, with no cling to the glassware. The palate ends up being very well blended, with a spicy and slightly citrusy aftertaste. The finish is very crisp and clean, with a slight drying bitterness and spice that clears the palate for the next drink. Tasty.

Serving type: bottle

12-25-2011 03:18:06 | More by GarthDanielson
Photo of bark
bark

Sweden

4.13/5  rDev +16%
look: 4.5 | smell: 4 | taste: 4 | feel: 4 | overall: 4.5

The colour is pale copper with a hint of amber; the liquid is clear. The two finger head is white, compact and firm, it builds a fine crater. Some lacing occurs.

The smell is dominated by a clean bitterness with some dry metallic flavours. I noticed some dried fruits and hints of yeast and caramel too.

The taste is complex with clean bitter notes and a touch of minerals that blends with sweet malty flavours of apples, kiwis and raisins. The aftertaste adds some mild yeast, fresh lettuce (!) and a touch of fizzy painkiller tablets (!!) and a declining bitterness that makes room for sweet malt and caramel flavours.

The carbonation is mild to medium; lots of small bubbles. The liquid is light and smooth.

Although one can argue if this is a “Christmas beer” or not, it is a very drinkable and well crafted IPA.

Serving type: bottle

11-29-2007 20:40:20 | More by bark
Photo of TheLongBeachBum
TheLongBeachBum

California

3.6/5  rDev +1.1%
look: 3.5 | smell: 3.5 | taste: 3.5 | feel: 3.5 | overall: 4

Presentation: Distinctive Half-Litre brown glass bottle that has a wide body and a tall long thin neck sealed with a standard looking brass crown cap. My label resembles the one shown here on BA.

“Bad Elf” is described on the label as “6.0% Alc.Vol. Winter’s Ale”

Appearance: Soft orange amber torso with a light golden body. Nice rising dirty white head on the pour. The creamy head soon relaxes the froth and settles down a thin covering. Gentle lacing rings as you work your way down the Pint. Streamers fill the body. Fine tuned carbonation is at a level that is cask like.

Nose: Malts and a floral hop character. Middling strength with a nice projection of the hops in the aromas nonetheless. Some grapefruit and lemon rind in there too.

Taste: Malt in the beginning is earthy with a little spice. Soon the hops have a more dominant role and pull through a citric sharpness. Finish has a clean ending with a decent grapefruit hop tang. Fruity at times and nicely put together.

Mouthfeel: No sign of the alcohol, it drinks below its fighting weight and this does allow the flavors more leeway. Above average feel but the base is a little thin at times. The conditioning lends a smooth creamy texture though which takes it up a notch.

Drinkability: A decent quaffer with an attractive profile. The malt adds a depth to the base whilst the hops add fruits and some spices. Clean sharp grapefruits and a hint of lemon make this a very refreshing brew to tackle.

Overall: Originally a little hoppier I recall, this years seems a tad more malty to the palate, but this is still a solid brew, despite the fact that I don’t really consider this to be a traditional Winter Ale by any definition. That said, this is by far the best of the “Elf range” of beers from Ridgeway, for my money the Very Bad, Seriously Bad and Criminally Bad just get worse with strength. Bad Elf is the original and harks back to its roots and doing what Ridgeway do best. More of a premium hoppy English Bitter than anything to do with Christmas or Winter – a little expensive but a pleasant brew overall.

Serving type: bottle

12-25-2006 01:27:59 | More by TheLongBeachBum
Photo of cokes
cokes

Wisconsin

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.

Serving type: bottle

12-06-2003 05:08:16 | More by cokes
Photo of champ103
champ103

Texas

4.05/5  rDev +13.8%
look: 3 | smell: 4 | taste: 4 | feel: 4 | overall: 4.5

A: Pours a clear golden straw color. A white head forms and leaves some light sticky lace.
S: Fruity hops up front, but it is not overly bitter. Oranges, apples, pears, and other citrus aromas. Some sweet doughy malt.
T: Again a nice hoppy bite up front. Oranges, apples, pears with a hint of grapefruit. Just the right amount of bitterness for an English IPA. Sweet caramel and doughy malt.
M/D: A medium body that is creamy and well carbonated. Very smooth and easy to drink.

I like this beer. Not overly complex, but very tasty. Something I could drink more of.

Serving type: bottle

12-07-2008 19:01:10 | More by champ103
Photo of FosterJM
FosterJM

California

3.13/5  rDev -12.1%
look: 3.5 | smell: 3.5 | taste: 3 | feel: 3 | overall: 3

163rd review on BA
bottle to mug

Stocking stuffer from the wife

App- A little darker than drawn butter in a bowl. One finger head that went away quickly. Not at all how I thought this would pour.

Smell- A faint citrus with some hops, spice and a touch earthy.

Taste- A very off taste. Has a malty bite to it but it's a bit flat. Had a spice/herb note that just didn't sit well to me.

Mouth- A bit chewy with a lighter medium body and a medium carbonation.

Drink- A little off to me but wasn't too bad. A gift from the wife. At least she tried.

Serving type: bottle

01-07-2011 04:08:12 | More by FosterJM
Bad Elf from Ridgeway Brewing
81 out of 100 based on 355 ratings.