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Bad Elf - Ridgeway Brewing

Not Rated.
Bad ElfBad Elf

Educational use only; do not reuse.

243 Reviews
no score

(Send Samples)
Reviews: 243
Hads: 411
Avg: 3.59
pDev: 18.66%
Wants: 5
Gots: 19 | 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:
Beer added by: Loki on 11-26-2003

No notes at this time.
View: Beers (29) | Events
Beer: Reviews & Ratings
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Reviews: 243 | Hads: 411
Photo of atsprings
4.02/5  rDev +12%
look: 3.5 | smell: 4 | taste: 4 | feel: 4.5 | overall: 4

Pours a slightly hazy orange with a thin head that quickly diminishes to a ring. The aroma was caramel malts and earthy citrus hops. The taste was citrus hops slightly overpowering sweet caramel malts. The beer is crisp and refreshing with decent warming alcohol. This one certainly makes for an interesting Winter brew.

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Photo of Tballz420
4.01/5  rDev +11.7%
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.

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Photo of WVbeergeek
4/5  rDev +11.4%
look: 4 | smell: 4 | taste: 4 | feel: 4 | overall: 4

Appearance: Light golden amber tone with a full frothy white head leaves large evenly strung patches of lace, nice. Aroma: Hop cones fill the air very citrus in nature almost easy to call it lemon or lime blended with flowery hops and an easing light malt backbone definitely some hops in an English IPA oh yeah. Taste: Layers of bittering hops as for the hop flavor it comes through in micro bursts of zest from a citrus fruit and slight pine needles not bad just a bit unbalanced not enough sweetness to balance out the hops here. Mouthfeel: Light to medium bodied ale not bad nice fine carbonation good stuff. Drinkability: Decent brew out of the UK thank heavens for American IPAs man am I thankful, this is good but it's not a Stone IPA or Sierra Nevada Celebration.

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Photo of RonaldTheriot
4/5  rDev +11.4%
look: 4 | smell: 4 | taste: 4 | feel: 4 | overall: 4

Bad Elf has a very thin, soap-bubble white head and a clear (a little hazy once the dregs are swished & poured), orange appearance, with lacing. The aroma is peppery, citrusy, and bready, and the taste is hop forward- citrus hops, sweet bread, bitterness, and cracker. The mouthfeel is light and watery, and Bad Elf finishes crisp, clean, refreshing, and mostly dry. The drinkability with this is ultra high. Overall, this is very good, and I recommend it.


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Photo of beerdrifter
4/5  rDev +11.4%
look: 4 | smell: 4 | taste: 4 | feel: 4 | overall: 4

Picked this up at the biggest beer store in the UK, Beers of Europe Ltd. Clear copper-yellow pour with big, fluffy two finger head with good retention and lacing. Hoppy, perfumy, floral nose with a malty backbone and hints of apples and caramel. Nice tangy, citrusy, bitter hop bite in the taste, well balanced by a sweet malty caramel base with a hint of apples and bubble gum. The mouthfeel is crisp and dry and slightly fizzy with a touch of chewiness. Slightly higher ABV then your typical English IPA, but you definitely can't tell. I'm thinking that some of the critical reviews were due to beer past its prime. This was extremely drinkable and enjoyable. It was closer to an American IPA then I had expected. Pleasantly surprised!

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Photo of mrfosters
4/5  rDev +11.4%
look: 4 | smell: 4 | taste: 4 | feel: 4 | overall: 4

Off white head , a hazy amber hued pour.Aroma is kinda citrusy and yeasty.Ditto for the taste,though there is a slightly sour and alcohol finish.I like the label ,and that warning about driving and machinery. We need humor wherever we can get it.I was happy with this ,though, for a winter ale,I prefer SNCA.Unfortunately I haven't gotten hold of this year's version yet.

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Photo of BEERchitect
4/5  rDev +11.4%
look: 4 | smell: 4 | taste: 4 | feel: 4 | overall: 4

Very Ale-like for a Christmas beer. In that, I mean a strong pale, estery, fruity, and hoppy brew without the amber or red malts that I expected. Instead, I found a pale malt brew with big fresh English hops that shows a lot of pine and earthy character. Mildly woody, but reliant on peach, appricot, apple and pear flavors to carry the brew. Spicy and mellowed with a nice maturation. Feels medium to the palate with a firm texture that rides into the finish. Finishes with a warm, hoppy flavor and feel. Good brew, but not what I expect from a Christmas brew.

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Photo of stoner420
4/5  rDev +11.4%
look: 4 | smell: 4 | taste: 4 | feel: 4 | overall: 4

Had this on tap

appearance: medium amber, light carbonation, no head at all, clear

smell: green apples, malt, hops in the background

taste: carmel, smooth, green apples, fruity, malt, hops

texture: full bodied, good structure, tastes blend nicely

overall: drinkablility is good, will try this again, refreshing, don't expect hops like an IPA, almost has a cider quality. Has that Ridgeway quality to it.

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Photo of clvand0
4/5  rDev +11.4%
look: 4 | smell: 4 | taste: 4 | feel: 4 | overall: 4

I sampled this at the local pub - actually stole a drink from kmpitz2, as it was he who ordered it. It pours a golden color with a small head that dies off quickly and doesn't leave much lacing on the glass. The aroma is very hoppy - citrus hops, mostly, with some caramel malt backbone. The flavor was much the same. Definately an IPA, British hops. Nice mouthfeel and easy to drink. Very good beer.

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Photo of budgood1
4/5  rDev +11.4%
look: 4 | smell: 4 | taste: 4 | feel: 4 | overall: 4

pours out of the half litre bottle a slightly hazy, dark golden colour. a frothy eggshell white head appears and sticks around to provide a nice lace. hoppy aroma...lemony, grassy, zesty, a bit piney and solvent, too. underlying sweet and syrupy maltiness backs it up. nice english india pale ale here. the flavour profile is a lemon zest hop dance all over the tongue, while a meek pale malt backbone balances the best it can. bitter hop finish... and i want another sip. pretty straightforward stuff. a nice body and creamy mouthfeel make it a nice drinker. gotta love the hops in this one. nice drinkability...this would be a great session ale or a nice one to wash down some grub with.

not sure the price justifies buying this every year, but at least i got to try it and keep the cute and cartoonsh x-mas themed bottle.

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Photo of mickeymac
4/5  rDev +11.4%
look: 4 | smell: 4 | taste: 4 | feel: 4 | overall: 4

On tap at Lucky Baldwin's it golden-orange with a thick white head the leaves lace all the way down the glass. The smell is decidedly hoppy with load of malt and some spice. The taste is on the bitter side, but certainly not over the top. Moutfeel is nice and it goes down well. I used it to wash down some chicken curry at Baldwin's. If I hadn't known, I would have pegged this as a Pacific Northwest IPA.

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Photo of BTPete
4/5  rDev +11.4%
look: 4 | smell: 4 | taste: 4 | feel: 4 | overall: 4

12oz pour from Cask to Mug at Mahar's in Albany, NY.

Notes from phone.

A: hazy gold color. A little amount of bubbles with a little amount of lacing.

S: nice citrus pine, sweet aroma

T: smooth balanced ipa with a nice citrus and floral presence.

M: nicely carbed but being cask pretty mellow.

D: very drinkable and enjoyable, glad I came out for this one. I could have a few of these as it was nicely hopped but balanced and pretty darn smooth. The bar was getting busy so my brain couldn't focus too much but I wanted to review it. Hopefully it will be there again on my next visit.

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Photo of Gehrig
4/5  rDev +11.4%
look: 4 | smell: 4 | taste: 4 | feel: 4 | overall: 4

Light orange body supports two ample fingers of white froth. The smell gives off only a little hint of the bitterness and complex taste that comes later, unfortunately, though citrus is certainly detectable. As the beer warms, however, the nose becomes better and more balanced with hop bitterness. I rather like the taste, which becomes more complicated as the beer warms slightly, and I ponder what I've purchased. Plenty of citrus--mainly grapefruit, lemon and some orange--ample hops to the taste, some modest spice, and a little vanilla that I enjoy in small servings. Nicely done.

This is a solid, well-rounded beer, not outstanding but good indeed. It's not a beer to quaff, but rather to patiently drink and enjoy. I would not characterize this as a Winter Ale per se, but rather a nice IPA, similar in hop allotment and style to, but different in flavor from Samuel Smith's IPA. It will come around.

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Photo of northaustin
4/5  rDev +11.4%
look: 3.5 | smell: 3.5 | taste: 4 | feel: 4.5 | overall: 4.5

smell is very sweet, with a nice fairly complex malt bill and some alchohol heat.

pours a semi hazy semi dark amber. with two fingers of white head that disappears rather quickly but leaves a nice even head all around the glass.

taste: nicely balanced. not very big on flavor. but still enjoyable. it tastes very similiar to an oktoberfest style.

mouthfeel: really pleasant. leaves a nice sweetness in the back of the throat and a slight syrupness all around the mouth.

drinkability: wish this one was available year round because it is definately worth the price and it is very sessionable.

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Photo of SassyBootblack
4/5  rDev +11.4%
look: 4 | smell: 4 | taste: 4 | feel: 4 | overall: 4

Appearance: Golden and clear, with a white head. Well that's certainly a surprise, you expect winter ales to be dark.

Smell: Soft English hops.

Taste: Wow! Really great bready malt flavor here. Also there's Goldings hops, I believe, but it's not over powering. Slightly bitter.

Mouthfeel: A little on the thick side.

Drinkability: For what appears to be a beer being sold for its amusing label, they certainly put a lot of good ingedients in it. Very tasty.

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Photo of bum732
3.97/5  rDev +10.6%
look: 3.5 | smell: 4 | taste: 4 | feel: 4 | overall: 4

Pours a golden yellow, not much head, great lacing. Smells of stone fruits, apples, rasberries, lots of floral earthy hops, . Tastes of fruity malt, semi-sweet, almost like a cider. Bitterness is pretty mellow, mostly floral. Finishes fairly sweet with just a touch of dry hoppiness and more apple and pear fruitiness. Decent mouthfeel, good carbonation.

An interesting beer, i wouldn't think its an English IPA, very fruity, not sure if its from the malt, yeast, hops or a combination. Not too bad though, if you like english fruity beers.

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Photo of BeerSox
3.97/5  rDev +10.6%
look: 3.5 | smell: 4 | taste: 4 | feel: 4 | overall: 4

500ml bottle into nonic

Honey colored, crystal clear, with a thin off-white head that slowly settles to a thin cap. Stringy lacing along the glass.

The aroma is mostly crisp malt, with a presence of bitter hop aroma, which excedes that of a Bitter.

The flavor exerts a sturdy malt backbone, with some lingering bitter hops. It's a little less malty and a little more hoppy than an ESB, giving the emphasis to the hops a little more. Medium bodied with a good amount of carbonation. Lingering bitterness slowly fade between each sip.

Pretty much your standard IPA (which is a good thing). Most of the hype around this beer is from the label in the series of beers. Everything in this beer is where it should be. Recommended.

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Photo of Traquairlover
3.97/5  rDev +10.6%
look: 4 | smell: 4.5 | taste: 4 | feel: 3.5 | overall: 3.5

50cl bottle poured into a pint glass.

A = Clear amber liquid with a very thin white head. Good but not extreme lacing.

S = Smell is good, definite hops, pepper, malt, dried fruits, very complex for an English IPA. It smells like an English IPA ought to but there are other smells in their I did not expect.

T = Bitterness of the hops is there, also good flavor of roasted malt, same hints of white pepper and dried fruits (mango, pineapple) are their mid-palate. Good but a little thinner than I had hoped for after the smell.

M = Body is medium, but I found the carbonation level a little offputting. It filled my mouth too quickly as I tried to swish and enjoy the flavors.

D = This is definitely a drinkable beer. I could imagine drinking it each year (and think I will from now on), but if I was planning on drinking several beers, I would probably pick something where the flavor and aroma had a little better balance.

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Photo of countrocula
3.97/5  rDev +10.6%
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.

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Photo of RblWthACoz
3.97/5  rDev +10.6%
look: 3.5 | smell: 4 | taste: 4 | feel: 4 | overall: 4

Pours an amber that is clear with quickly dissipating head. Slightly hopped nose with a sweet edge and caramel influence. Flavor is bitter and sweet at the same time. Feel is slightly touched with bubble. Drinkable, sure. But this bottle cost me $6. For that price I could be getting a Rochefort, a St Bernardus, or a wide array of other home runs. Nice to try, but at this price I would never go back to it.

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Photo of JoKo
3.96/5  rDev +10.3%
look: 4 | smell: 3 | taste: 4.5 | feel: 4 | overall: 4

Poured into my standard mug. Received this beer for Christmas again this year.

Appearance - This beer is bright yellow with an orange tinge, hazy, and has a full white head.

Smell - Lots of hops, citrus notes, orange, etc.

Taste - The taste is hoppy up front, some pine flavor, citrus is also very noticeable in this beer. There is a nice balance between malts and hops in this beer.

Mouth feel - For the style, definitely on the light side, also very smooth and highly carbonated.

Drink ability - For the style, this beer is very drinkable, if I wanted to, I could have a few of these in one sitting. This beer says it is a "Winter Ale" on the bottle, but it could easily pass for a Summer Ale.

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Photo of mntlover
3.95/5  rDev +10%
look: 4 | smell: 4 | taste: 4 | feel: 3.5 | overall: 4

Pours a slightly hazy golden color with a nice 2 finger white dense head but lacing is light. Aroma is hops floral earthy hops musty grass lots of hops hard to find the malt in the nose. Taste is hops mixture of bitter grapefruit and musty grass leave a lingering bitterness that asks for more please, not overly bitter by any means just lots good hop flavors. I get a touch of sweetness from the malt at the start that is soon overtaken by glorious hops this is one serious English Style IPA must say I enjoyed it. Mouthfeel is little light but then again hops don't have much body. Drinkability is good it has restored my faith in English style IPA's.

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Photo of SteveO1231
3.95/5  rDev +10%
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.


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Photo of dedrinker
3.95/5  rDev +10%
look: 4 | smell: 4 | taste: 4 | feel: 3.5 | overall: 4

Light amber-to-gold. smelled a bit of sulfur beneath the stone fruit and biscuit. Flavor is quite similar with a little dry edge from the hops. Kinda light-bodied for an English Pale Ale of 6% but it did make it more drinkable. At any rate they could easily achieve this body and flavor at a lower strength - say 4.5%, and that way I could make it my go to beer, and they would be filling kegs like mad to ship over here, and I wouldn't have to buy a retail pint bottle for the price a nice draft would cost in a bar.

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Photo of pacond
3.95/5  rDev +10%
look: 4 | smell: 4 | taste: 4 | feel: 3.5 | overall: 4

Poured a big head. It is living in a world of dry citrus and spciy aroma's. At first taste it was a english ale that had desires to become bigger. The mouthfeel of the beer is more rich than I expected, sort of creamy. It is definately an english ale. Further into the session it became increasingly hoppy to my palate and more complex. A good time!

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Bad Elf from Ridgeway Brewing
81 out of 100 based on 243 ratings.