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Bad Elf - Ridgeway Brewing

Not Rated.
Bad ElfBad Elf

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BA SCORE
81
good

405 Ratings
THE BROS
-
no score

(send 'em beer!)
Ratings: 405
Reviews: 243
rAvg: 3.55
pDev: 14.37%
Wants: 4
Gots: 16 | FT: 2
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:
Beer added by: Loki on 11-26-2003

No notes at this time.
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Beer: Ratings & Reviews
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Ratings: 405 | Reviews: 243 | Display Reviews Only:
Photo of tgbljb
4.47/5  rDev +25.9%
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)

Photo of GCBrewingCo
3.7/5  rDev +4.2%
look: 3.5 | smell: 3.5 | taste: 4 | feel: 3.5 | overall: 3.5

The beer poured into the glass clear light amber golden with a white and low head which fizzed lightly then retreated to the edges of the surface to try and lace the glass.

The aroma was caramel malt with some slight earthy hop presence.

The flavor was mostly caramel with hop bittering being very slightly resinous, but present and containing a metallic twang. The flavor seemed almost, yet not quite citrusy, but certainly pine and there was almost a spice flavor present.

The finish was dry with lasting pine flavor and low caramel into the aftertaste. The body was medium and the carbonation was very low leaving the mouthfeel a bit on the thin side. My second experience with this Elf...it had more Elf'in magic to my palate the first time than this time.

16.9 ounce bottle.

Photo of jlh8643
2.63/5  rDev -25.9%
look: 3 | smell: 2.5 | taste: 2.5 | feel: 2.5 | overall: 3

Poured into an imperial pint glass. A decent white head sits on top of a hazy amber body a steady flow of bubbles rising to the top. Nice lacing follows the head down. Some floral, earthy hops with some bready malt in the nose. The body was disappointing. Fairly thin lacking the malt backbone I would expect. Weak hop expression with some citrus hops bringing up the rear. Not one that I will spend my money on in the future.

Photo of Dukeofearl
3.8/5  rDev +7%
look: 4 | smell: 4 | taste: 3.5 | feel: 4 | overall: 4

Bottle purchased in December 2005 (or was it early January, 2006?) for $5.99 at LaBodega in Riverside, CA. For that price I hope it's good! Let warm from my too-cold fridge for a spell before opening.

Pours a bright copper color, almost orange. Minimal head from a slow pour (as recommended) but lots of carbonation streaming up from my Imperial pint glass. Within a few minutes, there's no head. The label discusses bottle conditioning and pouring gently to keep the yeast from getting into the glass- I watched carefully and never saw one speck of yeast.

Aroma is a nice solid hops profile, very English (versus west coast US), floral and slightly oily, slight citrus, gentle, not overpowering.

Flavor profile is a nice balance of malts and hops, with a sweet orange-gentle lemon swirls in a mellow bread. Flavors are more delicate and subtle than smack over the head strong.

Mouthfeel is a little thin and watery, more like a session English pale ale than a higher ABV English IPA. Alcohol is well hidden. This actually makes it more easily drinkable, so these two factors cancel each other out with this beer.

A good beer, enjoyable, but at its price, I'll have to pass this by for other good options.

Photo of Pegasus
3.53/5  rDev -0.6%
look: 4 | smell: 3.5 | taste: 3.5 | feel: 3.5 | overall: 3.5

Appearance: Pale amber in color, with a touch of haze, a small white head, with good retention, thin lacing, little carbonation.

Aroma: Strong herbal hops and grassy notes dominate, with sweet malt notes beneath, struggling to assert.

Taste: Opens with a slight toasted malt note, with more than ample citrus and pine hops and grassy notes as well. Towards the middle a bit of the malt character comes through with some caramel notes. Finishes dry with a tea-like hop note.

Mouth feel: Smooth, and pleasant, but seemed a touch thin.

Drinkability/notes: Overall, pleasant, but seems an odd choice of style for a winter beer, with which I associate a higher alcoholic content and greater malt character.

Presentation: Packaged in a custom sixteen ounce glass bottle with a pop-off crown, served in a standard pint tap glass.

Photo of Winter
2.83/5  rDev -20.3%
look: 3.5 | smell: 3 | taste: 3 | feel: 3 | overall: 2

Pours a clear medium amber in color with a thin off-white sudsy head. Fruity and hoppy aroma with light hints of biscuit and alcohol. The mouthfeel is medium in body. Things starts off with a sweet malty front, but that soon comes to an end as the hops take over with a crisp bitterness. Abrasive on the palate midway. A citrusy grapefruit flavor follows. The finish has a salty bitterness to it.

Between this, Very Bad Elf and Seriously Bad Elf, this one appealed the to me the least out of the three. Can't quite pinpoint why that is, but for an IPA, this was nothing special and even less so as a winter release.

Photo of SteveO1231
3.95/5  rDev +11.3%
look: 3.5 | smell: 3.5 | taste: 4 | feel: 4 | overall: 4.5

Pours a light honey amber color. Little to no head and very little lacing.

Sweet malt aroma with hints of honey, floral hops and yeast.

Light and crisp on the palate. This brew has a mild biscuity malt sweetness and a flavor that is almost lager like to me. A sour yeasty bite connects with a mild hop bitter finish.

Nice brew, hoppier that most English IPA's that I've tried.

Cheers!

Photo of NClifestyle
3.3/5  rDev -7%
look: 3.5 | smell: 3.5 | taste: 3 | feel: 3.5 | overall: 3.5

Pours up a hazy golden amber color, a huge head of white foam with large bubbles drops quickly. Lots of carbonation lines can be seen rising up from the beer to the surface. Large bands of lace coat the glass.
Smells of wheat and bread are in the front, with hints of orange and pine hops as well.
Very spicy taste, some orange/lemon zest. Is dry and sharp to start, but mellows a bit, although the malt never really shows up, this is definitely an English IPA.
Medium mouthfeel with a decent amount of carbonation. Not a bad beer, but not my favorite.

cheers...

Photo of acrawf6
4.15/5  rDev +16.9%
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.

Photo of allengarvin
4.17/5  rDev +17.5%
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.

Photo of Suds
3.27/5  rDev -7.9%
look: 3 | smell: 3.5 | taste: 3 | feel: 3.5 | overall: 3.5

This brew is an orange color with a moderately sized white head. The liquid is very clear. The aroma is citric (decidedly, and almost sourly, grapefruit) and give the impression of freshness. There’s a little grain and malt underneath, but they’re hidden far behind the hops. The taste is similar to the aroma…serious citric hoppiness with a faint undertone of malt. It’s a little grainy, fairly dry, and decently carbonated. It’s refreshing and cleansing, to be sure, but I thought that this one could have been helped by a little more sweetness and balance. It’s drinkable and worth a glass. I wouldn’t call it an English-style IPA though…it sure seems to take its inspiration from the West Coast.

Photo of rhoadsrage
3.7/5  rDev +4.2%
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.

Photo of Quaffer
3.6/5  rDev +1.4%
look: 3.5 | smell: 3.5 | taste: 3.5 | feel: 3.5 | overall: 4

16.9 oz. bottle.

Appearance: This was a straightforward amber brew that was almost clear. There was just the slighest hint of haze to the liquid. During the pour, I roughened things up a bit and was rewarded with a white head that was almost two fingers tall. It disappeared relatively quickly. A few freckled patches of laces were all that was left behind.

Smell: Right after the pour, the aroma was a combination of rich, biscuit-like malt and pungent, raw hops. They weren't overpowering; they just had a rawness about them. After the beer had set for a little bit, the malt slipped away into the background and the hops rose up to conquer the aroma. They lost some of their edge and became more citrusy. There was a lot of lemon on the nose at this time, too.

Mouthfeel: Light-bodied and dry, with a lot of carbonation. Not rough, though.

Taste: This beer was dry from the second it hit my mouth. No initial sweetness at all. A muddled, piney bitterness kicked in quickly. The hops had a bit of that raw edge that they had in the aroma right after the beer was poured. Some lemon rose up and joined the hops, creating an oddly enjoyable lemon Pinesol flavor. This lingered into the aftertaste where just a hint of sweetness emerged. Toward the end of the beer, the hops became a little more distinct and defined and a little less muddled.

This one grew on me the more I drank it. Not bad.

Photo of Fugazme
3.8/5  rDev +7%
look: 3 | smell: 3 | taste: 4.5 | feel: 4 | overall: 3.5

Pours a clean, clear straw color. Much lighter than I had expected. Head is gone quickly, but a nice bit of lacing remains.

First whiff is hoppy with grapefruit and pine... second whiff (10 minutes later) is all grain. A touch of spice on the third whiff adds some complexity. I liked the first whiff better than the following two.

Extremely smooth on the drink. Creamy mouthfeel. Nicely done. Taste is slightly bitter and slightly floral. A touch of lavendar and clove. Some subtle hops. Better than I thought it would be. Flavors are small but complex. Well balanced. I like it.

Photo of Gueuzedude
3.78/5  rDev +6.5%
look: 4 | smell: 3.5 | taste: 4 | feel: 4 | overall: 3.5

Pours an almost brilliantly clear, full copper color that is topped by a frothy, three-finger thick, pale off-white colored head. The aroma has a light hoppiness to it that reminds me of herbal scents, a lightly sweet citrus-like lemon note, and even a hint of soft spiciness. The hop notes definitely dominate the aroma, but they are certainly not clubbing me over the head like and American hopped beer would.

The taste is fairly dry with a nice sharp, almost biting bitterness that carries through to the end. The hop flavor is a mix of herbal, perhaps even grassy, and lemon like citrus notes. There is a touch of malt sweetness that sneaks in to the middle of this beer; it accentuates the citrus character a bit and provides some balance to the hop notes. This has a nice heft to it, that is not too light and yet not so heavy that this is not quaffable. This beer tastes quite similar to what I would describe as an American brewed English style IPA. Restrained crystal malt character with lots of hop character. As the beer warms up the simple grain sweetness picks up a bit and this in turn accentuates the citrus notes a bit; even picks up some notes of orange. This is definitely quite enjoyable.

Photo of wl0307
4.12/5  rDev +16.1%
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!

Photo of jmz62565
3.1/5  rDev -12.7%
look: 3.5 | smell: 3.5 | taste: 3 | feel: 2.5 | overall: 3

This pours a dark bronze with a 2 finger head that disappears quickly.The mixture of malt and hops make this a nice smelling beer.However,this mixture is a little tough on the taste buds.This is very malty and very hoppy.Together,this makes a beer that is not very balanced at all.I think if they cut back alittle this would be better tasting.The m/f is medium and very unbalanced.This is not a bad beer,but the hype doesn't live up to the taste.

Photo of SwillinBrew
3.76/5  rDev +5.9%
look: 4 | smell: 3 | taste: 4 | feel: 4 | overall: 4

bought a bottle at the Bevmo in Orange.

A - Clear bronze brass with a small head of white. There were many bubbles clinging to my glass.
S - not much of an aroma. There was a faint hop aroma on the floral side. Maybe i need to let this warm up some???
T - Mmmm, a very well balance of hops and malt. Doesnt lean to either side and is pretty darn tasty. Not what i expected after smelling the bouquet. The bitter hops are present but not overwhelming and go well with the clean malt profile. Finishes with a slight mineral taste. Very tasty.
M&Dr - Good carbonation and medium body. I prefer more hops in my IPA's but i know this is an english style so it's okay and it works. Nonetheless, this is a tasty brew.

Photo of ADR
3.8/5  rDev +7%
look: 4 | smell: 4 | taste: 3.5 | feel: 4 | overall: 4

Lighter amber color, fairly transparent. Two fingers of pale head and average lasting-power. Laces fairly nicely, tendrils and incomplete rings. Hoppy aroma, leans on citrus with some impression of fresh gum turpentine. Light/medium mouthfeel, decently lively carbonation. Straightforward flavor, skewed toward the hops, fairly fresh and bracing with enough fruitiness to keep it from being overly dry. Decent but unremarkable malt balance, caramel and powdered sugar. Pleasant enough beer, drinkable, somewhat North American in many flavor aspects.

Photo of whynot44
4.27/5  rDev +20.3%
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..

Photo of battlekow
4.24/5  rDev +19.4%
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.

Photo of countrocula
3.97/5  rDev +11.8%
look: 3.5 | smell: 4 | taste: 4 | feel: 4 | overall: 4

Picked a bottle of this up as it was being liquidated from Gary's in Madison.(Still a few there as of 10/3/05)

Color was a mouthwatering clouded honey. The pour resulted in an attractive, pillowy head that left dense, yet quickly retreating lacing on the side of my mug. Tiny bubbles came forth from random spots in the vessel, not stopping for the duration of my sampling. . Small amount of sediment in bottle.

The aroma bore likeness to a mid-summer's grass mowing with a tinge of grapefruit and alchohol included. A beautifully fragrant, "earthy" smell.

From peering into the glass, I'd never expect the carbonation to hit my mouth the way it did. Rather lively on the the tongue. Malty with spice at first. Nice secondary hoppiness and not overly sweet (thankfully). A lasting, mildly bitter finish.

Very enjoyable brew. Although I wouldn't knock more than two of these back in rapid succession, I am keeping a few on hand for when the the typical American counterpart isn't what I am looking for.

Photo of Billolick
4.18/5  rDev +17.7%
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.

Photo of Tballz420
4.01/5  rDev +13%
look: 4.5 | smell: 3.5 | taste: 4 | feel: 4 | overall: 4.5

This is a slightly hazy golden color, lots of bubbles rising up to a big white head on the top.Nice lace trails. Fairly light nose, piney hops. Light pale malts in front, fairly dry, nice levels of bitter and pine hops rounding out the backbone. Some spice involved. Bits of fruit as well. Exceptionally hopped for the style, at least compared to what i have had. Not quite as intense as the west coasters here, but a nice hoppy treat. Med bodied. Nice english style IPA.

Photo of brentk56
3.36/5  rDev -5.4%
look: 4 | smell: 3 | taste: 3.5 | feel: 4 | overall: 3

Appearance: Pours a cloudy, slightly golden color with a nice head; a bit of lacing, but not too much

Smell: Kind of funky, with alcohol and a bit of malt

Taste: The malt flavor is quickly overtaken by the phenolic alcohol flavor; somewhat sour at the very end

Mouthfeel: Just about right for this style; medium bodied and moderately carbonated

Drinkability: Just OK; marred by the alcohol penols that get in the way of the malt and hop flavors

Bad Elf from Ridgeway Brewing
81 out of 100 based on 405 ratings.