Big Hop | East End Brewing Company

very good
102 Reviews
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Big HopBig Hop

Brewed by:
East End Brewing Company
Pennsylvania, United States

Style: American IPA

Alcohol by volume (ABV): 5.80%

Availability: Year-round

Notes / Commercial Description:
The first of the brews from Pittsburgh’s newest and MICRO-est microbrewery to hit the streets. Truly, a hopped-up American IPA with loads of Centennial and Cascade hops, and just barely enough malt backbone to balance it out. Our flagship brew

Added by WVbeergeek on 12-07-2004

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Reviews: 102 | Ratings: 259
Photo of Stanhagen
4.7/5  rDev +20.8%
look: 4.5 | smell: 4.5 | taste: 5 | feel: 4.5 | overall: 4.5

I had it on tap a neighborhood bar in Pittsburgh. A really impressive IPA coming out of a small brewery. It's not a kick you in the teeth hoppy beer but its got a nice bitterness to it that ensures you that your drinking an IPA.

East End Brewing has a small capacity so whether different batches of their brews have different tastes I can't say for certain, but they have a solid reputation so their quality control must be pretty good for a small brewery. Unfortunately i do not think east end bottles so you're probably going to have to be in or very near pittsburgh to try anything but if your in the area big hop is definitely worth a try.

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Photo of trygelski1
4.5/5  rDev +15.7%
look: 4.5 | smell: 4.5 | taste: 4.5 | feel: 4.5 | overall: 4.5

Poured from the new 12oz can into a tulip glass

Look: Nice amber color with about 1 inch of head

Smell: Citrusy/Malty/Piney

Taste: A bit on the malty side but still getting nice hints of citrus and pine. A nice well balanced IPA for those who are not hop heads.

Feel: Medium bodied with great carbonation out of the new cans

Overall: This is a solid well balanced IPA that is easy drinking and goes great on a nice summer day. Nice blend of maltiness and hops. Great IPA for someone who isn't a hop head. Now available in 12oz cans which makes this nice and portable. Another solid offering from the crew at East End!

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Photo of mjw1200
4.48/5  rDev +15.2%
look: 4.5 | smell: 4 | taste: 5 | feel: 3.5 | overall: 4.5

Not as hoppy as the name would have you think, but it doesn't disappoint. There are hops there, but there is good layers of malt. Some pine and citrus but nothing really over powers this beer. Lots of good flavor throughout, but its not just one solid flavor taking over.

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Photo of beerphan
4.43/5  rDev +13.9%
look: 5 | smell: 4.5 | taste: 4.5 | feel: 3.5 | overall: 4.5

growler -> pint glass
keg was tapped about 15 minutes before the pour to the growler and it was about 15 minutes before it hit my pint.

Arrived a deep orange amber, with the FRESH hops added to the growler adding an amazing touch. Gotta love to hear the 'plop' of a fresh hop. Poured with a nice quality fluffy lasting head that balanced the hops on a sudsy pillow. Waves of lace lined the glass throughout. Carbonation appeared minimal.

Smell of overwhelming hops. The fresh hops in the glass really completely overpower the nose with a grassy earthy smell.

Taste: Hops are all over this brew. From the first taste to the lasting refreshing bitter end. The fresh hops add an extra special earthy grassy flavor, that explodes as you reach the bottom of the pint. A nice full malt blast presents itself but only for a peek. Excellent with or without the fresh hops added.

Mouthfeel on bighop has sometimes let me down, but this fresh draw has a full natural feel.

This beer can be drank and drank. Just watch out, cause i always think the abv is higher than 5.8.

Note: the fresh hops are a once a year perk around harvest time, i am looking forward to the BigHopHarvestAle next month!!

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Photo of ThrashLibrarian
4.42/5  rDev +13.6%
look: 4 | smell: 4.5 | taste: 4.5 | feel: 4 | overall: 4.5

Looks like I get to write the first review. I had this beer from this brand new Pittsburgh brewery last night. It was probably from one of the very first kegs out the door. The beer is only available on draft in local restaurants. I had 2 last night at D's Hot Dogs on Braddock Ave.

The beer was a pale amber in color and appropriate to the style. It appeared to be a little hazy, but that did not effect my enjoyment of the beer. There carbonation was evident but it was not overly fizzy.It poured with a rocky white head that held up through the pint.
The aroma was of American hops. Very dry and fresh smelling. A mix of grassy and citrusy. Cascades?
The initial taste was hops, which is what I was expecting give the name. The hop flavors are upfront and very American. Very dry hoppy flavor in the finish. Not painfully bitter, but definitely "over the top" in the hop department (which I like). Just enough malt flavor to remind you that you are drinking beer.
The mouthfeel was similar to what I've experienced from other beers of this style.
The Big Hop is probably my favorite style of beer, and I found this one to be quite drinkable. Not for those non-hopheads, but that should be obvious. I decided to have a second, which is rare for me in D's, given their huge selection. I will buy it again.

A nice interpretation of the American IPA. I'll be drinking more of these and looking forward to the next beers out of the brewery. It was good enough that I wished that they had the means to bottle it, so I could take a six pack home.

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Photo of kimbo33
4.42/5  rDev +13.6%
look: 4 | smell: 4.5 | taste: 4.5 | feel: 4 | overall: 4.5

I love this shirt! Had to buy one. The taste is exceptional for and IPA, not too hopped...just the right amount so it isnt overly bitter. It is nice and smooth so it is easy to drink. Surprisingly nice malty taste to it. This is a good IPA to introduce to someone.

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Photo of TequilaTom
4.41/5  rDev +13.4%
look: 4.25 | smell: 4.5 | taste: 4.5 | feel: 4.25 | overall: 4.25

On tap at Primanti Bros in Cranberry PA. Nice deep clear amber color with a quickly dissipating light cream head. Very pronounced caramel malty nose with a hint of dank piney hops. A little more malt forward than a typical IPA, but this is actually a nice thing. I enjoyed having this after a hard day paint balling. Would gladly have again.

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Photo of aaronh
4.4/5  rDev +13.1%
look: 4 | smell: 4 | taste: 4.5 | feel: 5 | overall: 4.5

I've had a few pints of this at the Bottleshop, and I have to say Big Hop is Big Time! While not a beer that immediately asserts its place with the world class beers, it gets more enjoyable each time I have it. Typical IPA orange-copper body topped by a cream head. Usually a bit of a haze as well. Aroma has some solid American hop aroma, Centennial/Cascade. The hop flavor is fairly aggressive up front, but after a few sips it mellows a bit and balances really nicely with the caramel and biscuity malt background. The mouthfeel is very smooth on the palate and the beer makes its presence known. I love the seductive, supple caresses it gives tot he tongue. Drinakbility is also very good, and I coud consider buying a keg of this wonderful beer. I could drink it often and in great quantity if it weren't for the DUI factor. I can’t wait to try a few other offerings from Mr. Scott Smith at East End. I must admit, I was expecting a less than stellar offering, but Big Hop lives up to it's name. Every bit as good as Two Hearted or SNCA, but it does have that "typical" flavor profile, so it doesn’t make that fantastic first impression.

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Photo of rabsten
4.32/5  rDev +11.1%
look: 4 | smell: 4.5 | taste: 4.5 | feel: 4 | overall: 4

Got a growler straight from the tank in the Brewery. Nice.

Poured into a pint glass, honey amber. My growler is a bit flat, but the gererous sample I got at the brewery has a tan head and laced nicely.

Floral hop aroma over moderate malt. What I look for in an IPA.

Tasty, floral hops lead over a crisp malt. Well balanced.

Nice, round feeling opening with a sublte crispness towards the end.

Good drinkability. Goes down easily on this monstrously hot day.

Well worth a try. My favorite of the 'Burhg brewed products.

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Photo of TheMultiYeast
4.32/5  rDev +11.1%
look: 4 | smell: 4.5 | taste: 4.5 | feel: 4 | overall: 4

Pours a dark amber/brown with some white head

Big cascades in the aroma with plenty of citrus and tropical fruits, some sweetness.

"Big Hops" in the taste but not overbearing. Well balanced between bitterness and burnt sugar.

Nice flagship from East End

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Photo of jhicks12
4.32/5  rDev +11.1%
look: 4 | smell: 4.5 | taste: 4.5 | feel: 4 | overall: 4

This Beer is a great IPA. Not too bitter. nice balance. Beer poured a little flat from the growler but if you get a change to get it straight from the brewery its perfect.

A: Nice brown color and tan foamy head

S: very nice flowery hop aroma and malt backing

T: very balance and for me leaves nice flowery hop taste.

M: Nice carbonation and mouthfeel

D: very drinkable IPA with great balance flavor

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Photo of JamesS
4.3/5  rDev +10.5%
look: 4 | smell: 4 | taste: 4.5 | feel: 4 | overall: 4.5

Got this on-tap at the Pipers Pub in Pittsburgh.

Poured a great amber/orange color with excellent head and nice lacing. It had a wonderful floral scent, very hoppy, with slight citrus undertones. Great bitter IPA taste, a refreshing bit of citrus, with a great hoppy bitter aftertaste. This is very smooth and refreshing, a great pale ale.

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Photo of Mounty4Life
4.3/5  rDev +10.5%
look: 4 | smell: 4 | taste: 4.5 | feel: 4 | overall: 4.5

Fresh keg tapped week ago

Light and hazy
Smells of cascades overcome all
Great carbonation and hop presence
yummy hops hops hops
Overall local favorite of mine in ipa category..very drinkable for all the hop heads out there...a must try if ever in Pittsburgh,PA

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Photo of jeremy13586
4.3/5  rDev +10.5%
look: 4 | smell: 4 | taste: 4.5 | feel: 4 | overall: 4.5

Just picked up a fresh growler yesterday during their Growler Hours. Pours a big bubbly head that hangs around for a while, but eventually dwindles in to nothingness. The body is a nice cloudy copper color. Very floral in the nose.
Starts off a tiny bit watery, but then the hops hit you in full force. There is just enough sweetness. Finishes clean and smooth. I could drink this stuff all day long as long as I had enough growlers on hand.

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Photo of SwiftyMcBeer
4.27/5  rDev +9.8%
look: 3.5 | smell: 4 | taste: 4.5 | feel: 4 | overall: 4.5

Drank this from a growler picked up at the brewery. It poured a decent looking cloudy yellow/orange with a small head and a hint of lacing. Your smells are the standard IPA smells, piney, grapefruit, etc, supplemented with a decent amount of malt. The malts are the first thing that hits your palates quickly followed by the hops that take you into the finish. I like that this shows it's malts, I'm a huge fan of the hoppiest of beers, but it's nice to have an IPA that gives you some malt flavor every now and then. This is a beer you could drink all night long and the growler went really fast with three of us attacking it. An extremely enjoyable effort, I would probably get off the turnpike again to seek this out.

Serving type: growler

Reviewed on: 05-26-2008 20:14:49

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Photo of oneeye
4.24/5  rDev +9%
look: 3 | smell: 4 | taste: 4.5 | feel: 4 | overall: 4.5

From a growler straight from the brewery.

A.Unfiltered,cloudy orange/yellow with sticky lacing with very little head.

S.You can pick up the malts along with the hops at first.Grapefruit,sweet,grassy.

T.Sweet taste of malts up front.Piney/grapefruity hops with mild bitterness follows and ends dry with a subtle taste of hops and malts.Very balanced flavors without one flavor dominating the other.

M.Slight bitterness about the tounge with chewey malts and a light watery feel.

D.Very veasy to drink and very enjoyable to drink.The first sip is as good as the last.I can drink this beer all night and onto the next day wanting more.Very tasty indeed.

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Photo of Jpilot64
4.21/5  rDev +8.2%
look: 4.5 | smell: 4 | taste: 4.5 | feel: 3.75 | overall: 4

Surprisingly wonderful after-taste. It's got the taste of the promised hoppiness, but it's perfectly balanced with just enough malt flavor. The light malt flavor knocks down the sharpness of the hopps so the hop taste remains without the battery acid mouth-feel of other very hoppy pale ales.

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Photo of jasonm
4.21/5  rDev +8.2%
look: 4.5 | smell: 3.5 | taste: 4.5 | feel: 4 | overall: 4.5

Picked up a growler during growler hours last Saturday. Have been sick the last few days so just now getting to it.

A - Even in the growler, Big Hop has a lovely deep-orangish-gold color. Almost like the color of a strong iced tea. Very nice. Poured into a pint glass with a nice 1 finger width head with good lacing.

S - Floraly, piney aroma of Cascade hops after the pour. Aroma becomes more subdued over time.

T - Assertive hop flavor, but not overly bitter. Hoppiness tends to be more on the earthy side and not as much citrus. Subsequent tastings reveal a slight malty sweetness.

M - Surpisingly creamy/oily on the tongue with a prickle of carbonation.

D - A very good IPA that I could easily session. In fact, I think I shall!

Its a shame I cant give some Beer Karma points (a la Slashdot) to Scott @ East End Brewing. Its a great feeling to have a small brewer making excellent brews but a mere mile from my house.

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Photo of jcdiflorio
4.2/5  rDev +8%
look: 4 | smell: 4 | taste: 4.5 | feel: 4 | overall: 4

Poured into 22oz.pilsner glass.A very thick,slightly off-white head. Has reddish-orangey a mirky look.Very, cloudy,haziey,unfiltered look,can just barely see light through it.Very piney,citrusy aroma.A very piney,grapefruity taste.More on the hoppy side,not a malty as you would assume from the smell. A tangy mouthfeel,very chewey. Very drinkable for a beer of this style.This is a hop lovers brew,I thought it was refreshing,tasty,amazing how much of this beer I could drink. I really enjoyed this beer

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Photo of addmorehops
4.2/5  rDev +8%
look: 4 | smell: 4 | taste: 4.5 | feel: 3 | overall: 4.5

I've been lucky to find this twice since moving to Pittsburgh. Having done so, I'm ready to join ranks with the brewer and anyone who wants to help get this into a bottle.

Big on hops and big on flavor, a true delight. Being a hop head, I would call this quasi-balanced, bold session beer. Last time I had one, I followed it with a Bells 2H. Big mistake. BH had my pallette so energized and stimulated with flavor that the B2H paled in comparison.

If you see this one and you like hopcraft, try it!

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Photo of TurdFurgison
4.2/5  rDev +8%
look: 4 | smell: 4 | taste: 4.5 | feel: 4 | overall: 4

I had this on tap at the Sharp Edge in Pittsburgh. A friend recommended East End Blackstrap Stout, but we couldn't find it anywhere in Pittsburgh. As a fallback, I tried this IPA from East End.

It was served in a mug, refrigerator cold. Nice poofy head over clear golden fluid. Smelled hoppy, what else would you expect.

Tasted like a classic IPA, nearly perfect. If anything could improve it, it would be a little more balance with some malt backbone (just my opinion and preference). But I still give it a 4.5 for taste.

If this finds its way to Columbus I'll be picking it up for summer weekends on my deck.

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Photo of OldSock
4.18/5  rDev +7.5%
look: 4.5 | smell: 4 | taste: 4 | feel: 4.5 | overall: 4.5

Appearance - Nice orange-amber color, small amount of haze and a nice bubbly white head sitting on top that sticks around for the whole beer. Nice lacing as well.

Smell - Really hoppy, mostly citrus. Almost no malt smell to speak of, just gentle wisps of grain that get overpowered by the hop punch.

Taste - Damn that’s hoppy, the first sip is a real attention getter. The malt is more prominent in the taste than it is in the smell, but it still gets overwhelmed by the hops. The hops provide a good deal of bitterness as the beer goes down, but it’s not too extreme like many IPA's that I have had.

Mouthfeel - Nice carbonation dances on the tongue, combined with a solid full body, very nice for the style.

Drinkability - Good drinkability, nothing too amazing here, but a very solid IPA that tastes good and is local and fresh.

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Photo of burnstar
4.18/5  rDev +7.5%
look: 4.5 | smell: 4 | taste: 4 | feel: 4.5 | overall: 4.5

Had this very nice IPA on my first pilgrimage to D's. Big Hop pours a magnificent hazy orange/amber with one finger of foamy white head. Smell is hoppy, citrusy and slightly spicy. Taste is once again dominated by delicious citrusy hops but there is definitely some sweet/smokey malt in here. More balanced than some other IPA's. Has a nice full body, feels very nice in the mouth, and is a pleasure to drink. I will definitely have to pick up a growler of this sometime. Wonderful IPA and even better since it's so local and micro.

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Photo of psinderson
4.17/5  rDev +7.2%
look: 3.5 | smell: 4 | taste: 4.5 | feel: 4 | overall: 4

Poured from a growler filled fresh at the brewery with FRESH whole hops added to the growler!

Appearance: Dark golden, thick white head with awesome staying power and lacing. Somewhat cloudy.

Smell: Luscious hop aroma. I'm sure the fresh hops added some to this, but I've had this beer before and it has always produced a great citrus aroma.

Taste: Hops, hops, hops. A hopheads' dream beer! There was a hint of malt in the background, but the keynote here is a good, satisfying hop bitterness.

Mouthfeel: Great medium to thick mouthfeel with a clean finish thanks to the hops.

Drinkability: Well, I had a few with no problems. However, this may be too much for some.

I am so glad to have an up-and-coming craft brewery right around the corner. This is their flagship brew and I can see why. I Found this to be a good representation of the style.

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Photo of irishevans
4.15/5  rDev +6.7%
look: 4 | smell: 4 | taste: 4 | feel: 4.5 | overall: 4.5

I'm not typicaly an IPA guy so this may seem a bit off to those who are. nice deep gold colour, very sharp hoppy nose which is deceiving of the taste which is perfectly mellow smooth start and crisp but not overwhelmingly hoppy finish. extremely drinkable IPA, give her a try

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Big Hop from East End Brewing Company
3.89 out of 5 based on 259 ratings.
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