Big Hop | East End Brewing Company

very good
102 Reviews
no score
Send samples
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 PittsburghÂ’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

For Trade:
User Reviews
Sort by:  Recent | High | Low | Top Raters
Reviews: 102 | Ratings: 260
Photo of theotherone87
3.98/5  rDev +2.3%
look: 4 | smell: 3.5 | taste: 4 | feel: 4 | overall: 4.5

had this one the other day for the first time.

appearence- a nice hazy yellowish brown with a small white head

smell- smells of nice fresh hops

taste- for a ipa it was spot on. It was not two bitter but still had the hoppy good taste. I could imagine anyone drinking this regardless of they like the style or not.

m- right amount of carbonation

o- this beer was real delightful find. I wish i could get six packs or cases somewhere. I know they sell growlers of it. East end brewery is an up and coming brewery in pittsburgh and big hop ipa is a great brew. Cheers

 569 characters

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

 256 characters

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.

 271 characters

Photo of Rifugium
3.85/5  rDev -1%
look: 3.5 | smell: 3.5 | taste: 4 | feel: 4 | overall: 4

First had: on tap at Pinocchio's, Media, PA

Poured into a stem glass, a cloudy amber color with a nice finger of dense white head, that retained and laced well. Aroma of biscuity malts, pine and mildly citrus hops. Lots of good hoppiness in the taste, with a solid malt base. Very tasty IPA. Light-medium mouthfeel, moderate carbonation, and quite drinkable.

 359 characters

Photo of Boto
3.88/5  rDev -0.3%
look: 4 | smell: 3.5 | taste: 4 | feel: 4 | overall: 4

Draught @ Headkeeper: This one pours a slightly orangish color. There was a small off-white head that left almost no lacing. Milder aroma for an IPA. Some pine and earthy hops, as well as some bicuity notes. It has a nice taste. Somewhat bitter, but not overly so. Milder pine and faint citrus hops. Biscuit and slightly toasty flavors also. Decent caramel malt body. A nice brew.

 380 characters

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.

 645 characters

Photo of bigdeuce
4.13/5  rDev +6.2%
look: 4.5 | smell: 4 | taste: 4 | feel: 4 | overall: 4.5

Got this one outside PNC park before a Pirate's game. Generously hopped ale with a spicy, malty, backbone. Great pour, big creamy head..quite impressive. Very quaff-able, went down smoothly, with a spicy, hop nose. Very sticky and chewy beer. I need to come down to the brewery to get my growler filled back up with this one!

 325 characters

Photo of nukem5
4.1/5  rDev +5.4%
look: 4 | smell: 4 | taste: 4 | feel: 4 | overall: 4.5

A: Nice carmel coloration with a nice rocky foam cap.

S: Hops,hops,hops... some malt with citrus and floral galore.

T: Nice hoppy floral bursts of flavor in your mouth.

M: Medium bodied with good carbonation level.

D: Very drinkable and refreshing.

 252 characters

Photo of corby112
3.48/5  rDev -10.5%
look: 4 | smell: 3.5 | taste: 3.5 | feel: 3 | overall: 3.5

From notes:

Draft at several different locations in the burgh. Pours a slightly hazy, dark golden orange color with burnt orange hues when held to a light and a 1.5 finger frothy off-white head. Decent retention, slowly fading into a thin lasting ring. Sporadic spots of lacing left behind.

Slightly earthy hop aroma with lots of sweet citrus character as well as some pale malt and subtle booze. Hints of grapefruit and orange peel as well as some earthynpine from the hops. Thisnis countered by a decet malt backbone with hints of biscuit and alcohol sweetness.

Medium bodied with a sticky, bitter dry hop presence up front which is countered by some sweet fruit flavor, pale malt and alcohol sweetness. Pretty dry up front with a resinous pine characte but is decently balanced by hi ts of grapefruit, pineapple and orange peel. The mal backbone is a bit too strong for my preference with hints of toffee, biscuit and Graham cracker. Nicely balanced and decently drinkable but a bit too malty and boozy.

 1,009 characters

Photo of alleykatking
3.9/5  rDev +0.3%
look: 4 | smell: 4 | taste: 3.5 | feel: 4 | overall: 4.5

Poured from growler. Thanks to jdefont for this beauty. Justin you are amazing for this one!

A- Pours a semi-hazy light amberish color. One finger light beige head shows medium retention. Light web style lacing on the sides of the glass as I drink this one down.

S- Bright citrus hops in the front of this beer. These tend to die out a little toward the middle of the beer itself leaving a sweet bready caramel underbody shine for a second. Hops come back in the ending giving a little more fruit forward push.

T- Nice clean citrus zest on the palate with first sip. The crisp hop bite comes back for a second before retreating behind a sweet caramel malt background. The fruit flavors come in for a split second before a light bitter piney bite takes over. This isn't very overpowering though like it could have been.

M- Medium mouthfeel. Carbonation is great for the style. Citrus hops and light caramel malts left on the palate. Aftertaste is bitter hops that fade as a malt base and alcohol stick. Light drying on the palate from the alcohol. Flavors were balanced with hops and malt not really going past one another and no off flavors at all.

D- This IPA I thought was very drinkable...I mean very drinkable. There was no palate crushing hops in it which turned out to be a good thing and made this a smooth drinker the entire growler. The ABV is low enough to actually enjoy a whole growler by yourself if you choose.

 1,432 characters

Photo of thain709
3.85/5  rDev -1%
look: 4 | smell: 4 | taste: 4 | feel: 3.5 | overall: 3.5

A - A darker shade of amber with a bit of orange highlighting...the head is off white and stands about two fingers and falls into a thin cap...decent lacing

S - A big hop presence with citrus and pine leading the way...there is also a malt backbone that can be found

T - The beer is pretty balanced out in the beginning with the citrus hops starting things off...there is an underlying sweetness of caramel malt but it only sticks its head out for a moment...then the bitter pine hops rush in and tingle your palate for a while

M - Medium bodied...thick and smooth, could have a bit more carbonation...a slight metallic taste

D - This is a pretty decent IPA...bold hop presence with a touch of caramel first offering from East End

 756 characters

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.

 264 characters

Photo of StormKing47
4.02/5  rDev +3.3%
look: 3.5 | smell: 4 | taste: 4 | feel: 3.5 | overall: 4.5

Enjoyed on tap at Al's of Hampden, my sanctuary now let us bow our heads...

A- A fantastic pour reveals a rather dirt and ruddy dark hazy amber color with some brownish hue. Has a steady carb that leads to off-white head. This one looks filthy and unfiltered not your average ipa and a little scary looking, almost like iced tea.

S- A great blast of citrus hops are available with every whiff. Loving the simple citrus smells not too complex, but just as advertised a big hop smell and a light malty sweet undertone in the back. There's barely any malt, just a burst of big hops.

T- The light carb allows you to really dig into the big sticky hops of this one. A great blend of citrus, grapefruit with a touch of pine. The less malt the better I say, barely a malt sweetness, just simple and succulent citrus hops. Awesome balance of hops. Great!

M- Rather smooth with a thin coating. Really light carb with no tingle. Some nice stick and very refreshing. A little on the fluffy side which is enjoyable, but somewhat thin and could use a little more to put it up with the big boys.

D- Hell yes. It's more refreshing than iced tea. The continued toying of the hop profile makes this one a treat every time. A nice crispness that leaves you wanting more and more. Great job!

Scott is a one man operation that needs support. He is never satisfied and continues to ramp the hop profiles to make the experience different each time. Keep it up!

 1,444 characters

Photo of wampahoofus
3.62/5  rDev -6.9%
look: 3.5 | smell: 4 | taste: 3.5 | feel: 3.5 | overall: 3.5

A: Murky light amber color. A bit of light yellow head. Average carbonation.

S: Lots of citrus suggesting a nice supply of hops are on the way. A bit of sweetness as well.

T: Ah. Lots of wonderful hops! The carbonation is a bit flat. Maybe my growler did not keep it crisp for the two hours between filling and drinking. This reduced the enjoyment a bit but all in all it was an intense but still balanced hop head fantasy.

M: Taste is smooth. Hops linger in the background. Still missing some of the carbonation.

D: Nice hoppy beer. Hop head friends will love to share with you. Pick it up with a growler of Fat Gary and you will have a good balance for a party!

 667 characters

Photo of jagoffyinzer
4.12/5  rDev +5.9%
look: 4 | smell: 4.5 | taste: 4 | feel: 4 | overall: 4

A: poured with a nice thick head that remains as you drink. great lacing with a clear dark copper color, she is pretty clear.

S: oh boy this is great. this is a sweet citrus slighty piney and earthy with a little malt behind it.

T: this is a piney and sweet. citric and bitter. not a very big flavor but ive had this before, it is typically great and in your face.

M: kind of heavy but rich and smooth.

D: i drink it all day.

 433 characters

Photo of kwjd
4.03/5  rDev +3.6%
look: 4.5 | smell: 4 | taste: 4 | feel: 4 | overall: 4

Pours a copper colour with thick white head. Consistent lacing all the way down. Smells of floral hops. Very nice mid-level bitterness for an IPA with tasty floral hops. Nice malt base too adds a bit of sweetness. Very smooth. I could drink several of these in a row and not be tired of it. Quite a nice IPA.

 308 characters

Photo of glid02
4/5  rDev +2.8%
look: 4 | smell: 4 | taste: 4 | feel: 4 | overall: 4


Pours a hazy copper color with a one-finger slightly off-white head. The head recedes into a patchy layer on top leaving decent lacing.

Smells of leafy, citrus and pine hops, in that order, with good amounts of grainy caramel malt aromas serving as the backbone.

Tastes very similar to how it smells. Caramel malt flavors that are fairly dry kick things off and are joined quickly by good amounts of hop flavors that are equal parts earthy, citrus and pine. The hops carry through to a solidly bitter ending. As the beer warms the citrus hop influence tends to recede a bit, making more room for pine flavors.

Mouthfeel is good. It's got a nice thickness with moderate carbonation.

Drinkability is also good. I finished my glass without a problem and could have another.

Overall I thought this was a solid beer but nothing stood out as exceptional. Worth a shot but I wouldn't seek it out.

 903 characters

Photo of RustyDiamond
3.6/5  rDev -7.5%
look: 3.5 | smell: 3.5 | taste: 3.5 | feel: 3.5 | overall: 4

On tap @ BSP during the April Fools Day festival. Opaque burnt orange in appearance with a near white frothy head. Aroma of orange creamsickle. Sourdough rye malt up front...quite noticeable. From there, a subtle grapefruit/navel orange hop flavor arises. Chalky citrus and clean mouthfeel with a nice hoppy finish.
Nice to have a 5% sessionable IPA for once.

 359 characters

Photo of number1bum
3.77/5  rDev -3.1%
look: 3.5 | smell: 4 | taste: 3.5 | feel: 4 | overall: 4

Many thanks to mymrnngjckt for sharing a fresh growler of this.

Poured a hazy amber color with a finger or so of light beige head. Kept only a thin lace.

Smelled of citrus hops primarily, with a nice fruitiness to the nose. Some malt sweetness is there too.

Taste was a bit more muted than the smell. Hops were citrusy and were balanced well by some sweet malt. Malt backbone was maybe a tad too big imo; the hops didn't really stand out that much, and were not terribly bitter either.

Mouthfeel was creamy and smooth, a nice medium body. Carbonation was pretty modest.

This is a pretty drinkable IPA and I think it'd go over especially well with people who like a more balanced, less intensely hoppy IPA. That's actually not really my preference in an IPA, which is why for me this is just a so-so brew. It's pretty good, but not one of my favorites.

 858 characters

Photo of Stigs
3.98/5  rDev +2.3%
look: 4 | smell: 3.5 | taste: 4 | feel: 4 | overall: 4.5

review from several notes taken at various places, served in std. pint glass

A - bright amber with a slight haze. about a finger of foamy off-white head, stayed at that level through most of the drink. thin layer of lace on the way down.

S - mostlly a bit dulled citrus hops, sweetness from an abudant caramel malty backbone. a bit tame for an IPA.

T - lots of citrus and sweet hops at first then the heavy caramel malts kick in.

M - carbonation varies from location, usually pretty spot on. slightly thinnish body but nice and oily at the same time. goes down well.

D - one of my goto session beers at a few places around here. doesnt wear on your palate and won't get you blackout drunk. happy to have it locally!

 721 characters

Photo of NittanyBeerFan
3.78/5  rDev -2.8%
look: 4 | smell: 3.5 | taste: 3.5 | feel: 4 | overall: 4.5

Poured into a big German beer mug at Fathead's in Pittsburgh.

A: Hazy copper with a thick, deep head composed of coarse bubbles. It hangs around for a little while, I wish it could be there for a little longer.

S: Interesting hop character here. Citrusy, bready character with a little funk. I am compelled, but it isn't really the smell that I am looking for in my IPA.

T: Light wispy citrus hops with an undertone of sourdough bread yeast that keeps the malts from taking over this beer. The wild yeast flavor at the end is surprising, to say the least.

M/D: Smooth with a little hop bit. I enjoyed this beer, but in my mind, it isn't a glowing example of the style. Definitely a sessionable beer, despite that yeasty funk that could turn some people off. The flavor is good, but not my idea of a good, solid IPA.

 819 characters

Photo of callmemickey
4/5  rDev +2.8%
look: 4 | smell: 4 | taste: 4 | feel: 4 | overall: 4

A: Orange-amber body with a moderate fluffy off-white cap... decent retention but mediocre lacing

S: Bold, assertive pine and grapefruit bitter notes, slight sweet malt backbone

T: Less profound than the nose, but decent none the less... unfortunately doesn't live up to the "big hop" name... decently balanced malt-hop ratio, and subtle pine and grapefruit notes... not particularly bitter

M: Smooth, medium-light body, somewhat rounded finish

D: Decent all around ipa... not as complex as the big boys, but a good drinker nonetheless

 539 characters

Photo of BARFLYB
3.8/5  rDev -2.3%
look: 3.5 | smell: 3.5 | taste: 4 | feel: 3.5 | overall: 4


Big hop has a bright golden orange look with a tan 1/2 inch head with decent retention but not much lace. The nose has some hops with some citrus and fruit but the malt is just as noticable, a even split. The taste had light pine, grapefruit, and dough, bread from the malts with caramel. The feel was medium with good carb, crisp but not bitter. I was good with just one pint of it, it did not grab me.

 411 characters

Photo of plaid75
4/5  rDev +2.8%
look: 4 | smell: 4 | taste: 4 | feel: 4 | overall: 4

On tap at Six Penn in Pittsburgh.

Poured a medium amber hue with a one finger foamy white head. There was decent retention and lacing.

The smell featured a peppery and citric hop and a moderate sweetness.

The taste was upfront peppery resinous hop and a chewy caramel malt. Touch of sweetness at the finish.

The mouthfeel was typical of the style.

Overall a tasty hop forward IPA.

 390 characters

Photo of asabreed
4.1/5  rDev +5.4%
look: 4 | smell: 4 | taste: 4 | feel: 4 | overall: 4.5

Served in a pint glass.

Appearance: A nice hazy copper color with a nice rocky and quickly fading head, which charges up again with a swirl.

Smell: A nice clean but pungent hop profile of peach, citrus, grapefruit, and lemon zest.

Taste: A more malty profile initially, with some fruit and big citrus, sliding into some back of the throat tartness and sourness with some grapefruit and lemon zest.

Mouthfeel: Moderate carbonation and medium-bodied.

Drinkability: Highly drinkable. Fresh and flavorful. I went through two pints quite easily.

 548 characters

Big Hop from East End Brewing Company
3.89 out of 5 based on 260 ratings.
  • About Us

    Your go-to website for beer (since 1996), publishers of BeerAdvocate magazine (since 2006) and hosts of world-class beer events (since 2003). Respect Beer.
  • BeerAdvocate Microbrew Invitational

    Join us June 2-3, 2017 in Boston, Mass. for beer, cider, mead, kombucha and sake from over 70 small producers.

    Learn More
  • Subscribe to BeerAdvocate Magazine

    Support uncompromising beer advocacy and award-winning, independent journalism with a print subscription to BeerAdvocate magazine.