Bad Elf - Ridgeway Brewing

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Bad ElfBad Elf

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243 Reviews
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Reviews: 243
Hads: 408
Avg: 3.59
pDev: 14.21%
Wants: 5
Gots: 16 | 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.
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Beer: Reviews & Ratings
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Reviews: 243 | Hads: 408
Photo of SwillinBrew
3.76/5  rDev +4.7%
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.

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Photo of ADR
3.8/5  rDev +5.8%
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.

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Photo of whynot44
4.27/5  rDev +18.9%
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..

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Photo of battlekow
4.24/5  rDev +18.1%
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.

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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 Billolick
4.18/5  rDev +16.4%
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.

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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 brentk56
3.36/5  rDev -6.4%
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

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Photo of Luigi
3.68/5  rDev +2.5%
look: 4 | smell: 3.5 | taste: 3.5 | feel: 4 | overall: 4

A cloudy golden color, and if you put it up in light you can see tiny yeast particals. The head is very good. Not sticky but stays in place. I can smell a nice aroma of hops. The taste is very balanced. Malts hit the tounge first, but followed soon with a spicy hop flavor. The hops tend to stick around a bit. A very good English Pale ale, but I can't say it is a IPA.

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Photo of gentlebubbles
4.33/5  rDev +20.6%
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 .

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Photo of kmpitz2
4.57/5  rDev +27.3%
look: 4 | smell: 4.5 | taste: 4.5 | feel: 4.5 | overall: 5

I had a small sample of this beer from what was left in the firkin after the big opening of Saturnalia last night at Rich-O's. The beer poured a nice yellowed golden color with a nice figer or two of head with some retention. The nose was full of grapefruit hop and some very earthy undertones as well. The flavor was really nice, with a great hop profile with grapefruit and caramel from the malts. How nice. The beer was moderate to thick and creamy. Nice. Overall, this is a fantastic brew, and I think I enjoyed it more on cask better than from the bottle.

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Photo of brewdlyhooked13
4.15/5  rDev +15.6%
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.

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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 hero27
3.85/5  rDev +7.2%
look: 3.5 | smell: 3.5 | taste: 4 | feel: 4 | overall: 4

Appearance: I wanna start off by saying that I love the label...very appealing and festive. We got a kick out of the warning label on the back.. "WARNING: Drinking Bad Elf may impair your ability to drive a sleigh or operate toy-making machinery.." Classic. Anyways, pours a mostly pale golden-orange color. Relatively thin white head..lacing is spotty but leaves a nice thin cap on the brew all the way to the finish.

Smell: Definite herbal-hop aroma right off the bat. Crisp overall smell with some mild fruits picked up..maybe a tad of spices and very little on the malt side.

Taste: I gotta admit..i love the 6% ABV. I'd love to try the "Very Bad Elf" to compare the two. Best quality of this brew was the taste..while not complex, the IPA character comes out in full-force with the grassy, herbal hops. Alcohol is present but not over-the-top at all.

Mouthfeel: Decent carbonation and crisp, refreshing mouthfeel. Medium-bodied, smooth, and easy as pretty much anything to drink.

Drinkability: Good overall drinkability. Hops are not overwhelming but can be appreciated again & again.

Overall, I was really pleased with this brew. I was expecting the same old "Spicy Winter" taste and was pleasantly surprised to find a really nice Winter IPA. Would definitely recommend anyone trying, no matter what time of year.

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Photo of crookedhalo
4.05/5  rDev +12.8%
look: 4 | smell: 4 | taste: 4 | feel: 3.5 | overall: 4.5

50 cl bottle. Pours a straw gold color with some deeper golden highlights. Fluffy eggshell colored, rocky head. Fresh, flowery/oily hop aroma; notably Cascade. Hop bitterness that is herbal/vegetal and citrusy and lasts into the finish and lingers afterwards. Light maltiness, but only a glimpse that manifests itself as tea-like tannins that meld well with the hop bitterness. Minerally water portion. Lower carbonation allows the hops to shine through without becoming too acidic. Finely crafted and highly enjoyable for those that like hoppy ales.

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Photo of CRJMellor
3.58/5  rDev -0.3%
look: 4 | smell: 3.5 | taste: 3.5 | feel: 4 | overall: 3.5

Pours clear depp golden color with a big puffy white head that leaves some lace.
Aroma of pale and crystal malts with some underlying bread, grass and hay. Also noted were some resiny, herbal hop notes.
Flavor of biscuit, pale malt and hint of citrus and strong herbal tones.
Mouthfeel starts sweet with a bready/biscuity middle and finishes with a citrus and herbal hop presence.
Drinkability is solid. Traditional English Ale well done for the most part but underlying note of sulfur and mineral water is slightly off-putting.

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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 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 oberon
4.15/5  rDev +15.6%
look: 4.5 | smell: 4.5 | taste: 4 | feel: 4 | overall: 4

Poures a light golden with a orange hue to it with a huge fluffy that sticks like glue to the sides of my pint glass that was a little unexpected,big aroma of lemon rind and some leafy hoppness very fresh and vibrant definently bold.A really dry brew some spearament notes and some grean leafy elements a big crisp dry malt backbone holds up well with the big bitterness of this beer.A real English IPA highly hopped but not over the top by any means dry and crisp a real drinker I wish I had more.

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Photo of feloniousmonk
3.83/5  rDev +6.7%
look: 4 | smell: 3.5 | taste: 4 | feel: 3.5 | overall: 4

Clear, light golden color, pear peelings, apple slices, under a crystalline white, lacey head.
Aroma: bright, vibrant, sunny nose, a fruit salad blend, tropical fruits unfold, pineapple, slightly spicy, ...very English.
Taste: hmmm, spark of hops at the tip, fruity, but, all in all, a bit underwhelming. Rolls nicely in the mouth, tasty, with the 6% peeking through jsut a teeny bit. feels more appley further in, such an interesting take on a Wintery Ale...or is it bad to have this so far from the season? In summer, the Elf is more mellow, perhaps?
Nice enough, but the grinning, evil elf on the label led me to believe something more sinister.

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Photo of moulefrite
3.65/5  rDev +1.7%
look: 4 | smell: 4 | taste: 3.5 | feel: 3.5 | overall: 3.5

Pours a bad (elf ass) deep honey color and displays ample sticky head and lace. Aromas feature lemony hop and sweet biscuit. In the mouth the beer offers more lemony biscuit flavors and a big kiss of bitter hop. While I find this beer attractive it seems to lack individualality, hence making it just another decent IPA in my book. Albiet, I love it when a Winter seasonal is something other than a spiced up load of...

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Photo of Guinness4me
3.1/5  rDev -13.6%
look: 3.5 | smell: 3.5 | taste: 3 | feel: 2.5 | overall: 3

As IPA's are not my favorite, I was expecting to recoil at first taste. However, either my palate has calmed or this beer is better than some IPA's I've tasted in the past.

The color is that of a grilled cheese sandwich with teeny-tiny bubbles fighting their way to the respectable white head.

Like most reviewers wrote, it's got a fruity aroma that seems more spring-like than winter. I could see drinking this on the beach. I don't quite care for the metallic bitterness that seems to linger a bit too long, but not a bad beer.

Props for the 6.0 alcohol content.

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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 BeerBuilder
4.12/5  rDev +14.8%
look: 4 | smell: 4.5 | taste: 4 | feel: 4 | overall: 4

Pours to a deep golden color with a white head that leaves good lacing. The aroma is full of fresh, juicy hopsÂ…resiny and citric. The flavor is malty and spicy with a resiny hop flavor throughout. It is a drying brew that is medium in body. A very different English brew because it is so hoppy. A decent beer.

Sampled 12/31/03

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Photo of jdhilt
2.41/5  rDev -32.9%
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.

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