Ruination IPA | Stone Brewing

Your Rating: None
Want it   Got it 
Ruination IPARuination IPA
10,870 Ratings
Ruination IPARuination IPA

Brewed by:
Stone Brewing
California, United States

Style: American Imperial IPA

Alcohol by volume (ABV): 8.20%

Availability: Year-round

Notes / Commercial Description:
Different from Ruination 2.0

Added by kbub6f on 06-12-2002

This beer is retired; no longer brewed.

User Ratings & Reviews
Sort by:  Recent | High | Low | Top Raters
Ratings: 10,870 |  Reviews: 3,084
Photo of brakspear
4.19/5  rDev -2.6%
look: 3.5 | smell: 4.5 | taste: 4.5 | feel: 4 | overall: 3.5

One should know what they are getting into if they try this beer. If you are not a hophead, you probably will not be awestruck like some of the reviewers. "A liquid poem to the glory of the hop" just about says it all.

The beer pours a nice amber with a soft white head that disappeared rather quickly, probably because of all the hop oils present in this beer.

The aroma and taste both highlight the same thing: the pounds of hops that lace this most pungent IPA. Stone Brewing must keep the local hopyards in business just by brewing Ruination.

The citrus blast on the nose is quite impressive, along with the alcohol that is hidden just below the surface.

The taste, even with the 100 IBUs, is still balanced "well" (a relative term) by a sweet chewy malt body. Still your taste buds will certainly be scoured by the bitterness from the hops. Not a subtle beer, but subtlety was not what Stone has in mind.

This is not a session beer, but on an infrequent basis would add a jolt to your beer drinking sessions.

Thanks to EnTil for the sample!

 1,063 characters

Photo of kunzbrew
4.6/5  rDev +7%
look: 4.5 | smell: 4.5 | taste: 4.5 | feel: 4.5 | overall: 5

This is one I have been looking forward to. The big 22 oz. bomber bottle has my name written all over it. Pours a stunning semi-hazy light copper to straw color with a very thick 3 fingered head. The nicest sexiext lace I have ever seen on an IPA is left behind on the sides of the glass. I can smell the hops from about 2 feet away from the glass, this is an amazing smelling glass of beer. A strong smell of hops is pouring out of the glass at such a rapid rate, I can not wait to taste this momma. The hop flavor is outstanding and this is the best IPA I have every had. The hops are so strong the after taste is so nice WOW. This has to be one of my favorite brews from Stone they are simply amazing.


 714 characters

Photo of kbub6f
4.35/5  rDev +1.2%
look: 4 | smell: 4 | taste: 4.5 | feel: 4.5 | overall: 4.5

Bought online, ground shipping (unrefrigerated), 2-3 weeks in my fridge, served 45F, reviewed 45F-65F.

Big, creamy white, dense, foamy head reluctantly dissipates, clinging thickly to the glass. The color is deep gold with not even a hint of opacity.

The nose is hops (surprised?), slightly metallic (alcohol maybe?). It smells a little yeasty. Somewhat less aromatic than I was expecting.

Holy Mother of Hops! The front lets about a half a second of malt through before the hops absolutely kick your ass! Baby! The middle is sweet... the malt reasserts itself (especially as the beer warms up). And there's the alcohol. The finish is hugely bitter, as expected, and lasts forever. My tongue is curling up at the sides near the back.

Overall, this is one delicious beer. I expected the hops to overpower everything else. But at slightly warmer temperatures the malt is strong enough to poke through and the alcohol warms and makes the beer big enough to accommodate all those IBUs. This is an aggressive, deep, "arrogant" monstrosity of a California IPA.

 1,066 characters

Photo of OldFrothingSlosh
4.7/5  rDev +9.3%
look: 4.5 | smell: 4.5 | taste: 5 | feel: 4.5 | overall: 4.5

"A liquid poem to the glory of the hop!"

9 words that truly describe the elixir of life contained within this gargoyle-guarded amber bottle.

Appearance: 22oz. amber bottle with the beer brewer equivalent to the surgeon general's warning on cigarettes plainly telling you of the impending doom about to be unleashed upon your taste buds should ye be foolish enough to open it. But...deep in the darkest corners of your soul you wonder..."100+ IBU"...what does that taste like? And thus, with the ease of flicking a bottle cap, you have become addicted. Addicted to the insanity that is Stone's Ruination IPA.

Smell: You can almost see the vapor escape. It weaves a tantalizing dance of citrus, pine cone, and delicate sweetness that leaves you mesmerized.

Taste: Understandably, one might think that with an IBU of 100+ that this beer would allow you to collect the life insurance policy on your taste buds. Such is not the case. Indeed, following the first sip freshly poured from the cold bottle, I was concerned over the future functioning of my palate, given the stranglehold placed upon it by this wicked concoction. But, upon warming a bit, we see that this is one devilishly smooth gargoyle. The hops, while present in quanities to rival our national budget, are tempered by the malt character. Lke a knight battling a fierce dragon, the malt stands firm, refusing to yield to the evil serpentine abomination that is the hop. And this...this is such a wonderful thing to behold. The hops are so flavorful, not bitter as expected and that made this experience so much more enjoyable.

Mouthfeel: A prostitute for the palate. An incredible creamy smoothness that fondles your taste buds for what seems like an eternity.

Drinkability: Thank the makers that this is a 22oz. bottle. The alcohol is superbly woven into the fibers of this beer. I could drink this forever. Truly an incredible experience. "God bless the yeast, the malt, and the HOPS!"

 1,968 characters

Photo of bewareOFpenguin
3.9/5  rDev -9.3%
look: 4 | smell: 4 | taste: 4 | feel: 4 | overall: 3.5

I am beginning to understand Stone, "let's pack all our beers with a ton of hops." No exception here. Poure a hazy color, not too light. It tasted, well, quite hoppy. Not overpowering like Stone's other offerings, but still quite hoppy. It was a good sipping, end of night beer, but I could not pop one after another of these.

 326 characters

Photo of Todd
4.41/5  rDev +2.6%
look: 3 | smell: 4.5 | taste: 4.5 | feel: 4.5 | overall: 4.5

1 pint and 6 oz bomber bottle, brown with no bottled on info. 100+ IBU's ... insane.

Pours a magnificent looking beer, at first ... quite pale, touch of cloudiness (expected as this is unfiltered), and topped with a patchy, frothy, white foam head; retention could be better.

Aroma is even more magnificent, full of so much perfumey hop character that your mind drifts, dizzy, into another zone.

The taste ... this is one smooth bastard of a beer. Malt flavour is defining-ly bready / toasty up-front with a thick-ish, creamy mouthfeel. A hoppy beer indeed, but not "bitter," as one might think. It's all about the malt and alcohol with this beer, the hops try to punch through but get smoothed into the overall flavour. That said, the hop character is extremely flavourful with woody / herbal / flowery notes and a citric edge that melds quite nicely with the prickly alcohol. Speaking of alcohol, it's persistent and very warming. Todd like.

Loads of fruity flavours, but mostly pineapple and other tropical fruits. Finish gets a bit dry, touch of yeast feel and flavour and woody hop residuals. Plenty of bready leftovers, too.

Although a bit same-y in comparison to some of the other hopped up Stone beers, there's no denying that this is one helluva kick-ass beer! Flavours are off the scale, drinkability frightening and the effort/passion put into this beer is a beautiful thing, and very apparent.

 1,420 characters

Photo of aaronh
4.21/5  rDev -2.1%
look: 5 | smell: 4 | taste: 4 | feel: 4.5 | overall: 4.5

Pours a hazy, deep orange/amber with a dense, creamy tan head that never seems to subside. The aroma is strong on hop florals and a bit of pine. The flavor is all hops up front, but then a nice surprising malt sweetness slides in behind all the hops and supports them nicely. Hop bitterness shows again on the finish to clean things up. Very solid mouthfeel is definitely a strong point of this beer. A very good IPA that has excellent hopping levels. Glad it comes in a 22 ounce bottle, because 12 ounces would not be enough of this great beer.

 545 characters

Photo of johnrobe
4.37/5  rDev +1.6%
look: 4 | smell: 4.5 | taste: 4.5 | feel: 4.5 | overall: 4

This brew made me murmur the Homer Simpson mantra..."" Simply Delicious (yes, with a capital "D"). This brew pours a hazy light orange amber with an off-white head that left rings of lace down the sides of the glass. Loads of piney and citric hops in the aroma. You don't even have to sniff, the hops invade the air and assert their presence. Grapefruit, pineapple and citrus all hit your palate in the first wave attack. Surprisingly, there's a healthy helping of bready and caramel malts that show up around mid-palate providing nice balance, but ultimately beaten into submission by a veritable horde of PNW hops. A huge IPA, malt lover's approach with extreme caution.

Don't drink straight from the fridge, let it warm up a bit or the hops will be overwhelming.

 783 characters

Photo of 49degrees
4.28/5  rDev -0.5%
look: 4.5 | smell: 4 | taste: 4.5 | feel: 4.5 | overall: 4

OK, so we've all seen the stupid ad on television about "bitter beers" and what that Brand X says, "bitter is bad." Well, if bitter is bad, that Brand X better check out Stone Brewery of San Diego County with their red hot lineup of wicked (that's good) bitter beers. We've all heard of Arrogant Bastard and its cousin the Double Bastard, but don't let the Ruination IPA slip you by,

Damn - this one is bitter - but here, bitter is BETTER. Sold in a traditional the 22oz bottle (650ml for us Canadian folk) this whopper of an IPA is set at an unheard of 100+ IBUs -- as George Carlin would say, "that'd knock a buzzard off a S****-wagon!!" This really is a truly remarkable beer. Not only do they hit what may be the highest hop factor in an ale, they do so with such elegant ease, ensuring that the aroma, texture, and taste of this beer hits its mark each and every time.

Pours a rich golden hue with suitably large head -- something that never really sits less than 1/6" high. Lacing is superb along the entire glass, so much so, that the lacing once there, won't budge until you have finished your beer and are ready to clean the glass.

An extremely bitter aroma, almost overwheling, but not quite. Incredible mossy tones with heavy accents of pine throughout, plus some accents of a fruity complexture. As for the taste, it closely mirrors what is found in the aroma -- heavy but well balanced hops with an incredibly long aftertaste -- something that has yet to be paralleled from any brewer on either side of the Atlantic.

I first poured this one, and started drinking it straight from the fridge. It was almost overwheling at that point, but as the beer heated up closer to room temperature, its incredibly robust characteristics really started to shine. With such striking characteristics, one is forewarned to keep Ruination IPA as your final drink of the night because it lives up to its billing -- "by the time you develop a taste for this beer, you may find that you are permanently ruined from being able to enjoy lesser brews!"

 2,055 characters

Photo of goz
4.54/5  rDev +5.6%
look: 4 | smell: 5 | taste: 4.5 | feel: 4 | overall: 4.5

Copper in color, small whiteish head, good lacing. After the pour, the aroma filled the room with hoppy goodness. Pine & citrus greet the nose, and entice you to tip the glass and take a swig. Once in the mouth, the hops dominate the palate, coating the tongue with a thick, resiny, oily goodness. Citrus, pine, and maybe some cedar planking in there. Hops overpower the malt, leaving it a little unbalanced, but that is what I have had a taste for lately, it seems. A very large IPA, to say the least.

 502 characters

Photo of putnam
4.75/5  rDev +10.5%
look: 4.5 | smell: 4.5 | taste: 5 | feel: 5 | overall: 4.5

Thanks again to John Neil for delivering the goods from downtown Ohio.

Anxiously anticipated. Would it be too extracted? Actually, the hops in this beer may be more finely integrated than in the regular Stone IPA. No brushed metal drop-off on the finish. Deep, dark majestic bronze color suggests the reason. There is plenty of malt in this baby. Not as ruinously bitter as Rogue's I2PA IMO, and better for it. Lots of cedar, cigarbox-like aromas and flavors. Weighty and long. This is more of a marinade for the skull than a beer...

 536 characters

Photo of WVbeergeek
4.7/5  rDev +9.3%
look: 5 | smell: 5 | taste: 4.5 | feel: 5 | overall: 4.5

Wow!!! I have finally gotten ahold of the Ruination IPA, and I feel that there is so much anticipation behind the rating of this beer. First of all, I love this style and equally important it is brewed by Stone. IMO Stone brewing is revolutionary from the Bastard to the Smoked Porter. So, here it goes, the beer is poured into an official Stone Brewing Co. Pint glass leaving about two fingers of head. A deep copper goldish tint is the hue that this beer represents. As the gargoyle on the bottle stares at me, I attempt my first sip of this creation. WIth my first gulp, I took a deep breath to absorb all of the hop aroma that engulfed my senses. The hop aroma is a floral, citrusy, and earthy mixture of wonderful hops, with a sharp sweetness to the nose it bitters as it splashes down on my tongue with the welcoming bitterness (100 + IBU's) a trace of sweet maltiness tags along to balance out the beer to become a masterpiece. On the back of this bottle there is a warning of the what this beer can do to the palate. I agree that it is hilarious, and that I would not start out with this beer at tasting event. However, it is not to overwhelming for my tastes.... I love hops. If this beer and the Dogfish Head 90 min IPA were tried side by side a lot would be confused about which be was delivering which flavor. I think they are both sickeningly yet amazingly hoppy, yet I think I prefer the 90 min IPA. Definitely amazing a must try for all beer advocates.

 1,467 characters

Photo of RonfromJersey
4.85/5  rDev +12.8%
look: 5 | smell: 5 | taste: 5 | feel: 4.5 | overall: 4.5

Incredible looking bottle. A bright orange-yellow body, with just a hint of chill haze perhaps, topped by a frothy "just-off-white" head. The aroma is stunning. I popped the bottle and poured half. The citrus and pine coming from an arms length away is mind boggling. Inhale deeply and the cold you didn't know you had clears away. Taste: I'm sure there is malt in there somewhere, I just haven't stopped to look for it yet. Wait there it is. The sweet malt rolls in first, to set up a wall of sandbags before the hop explosion follows. Grapefruit, pine, even some lemon. This is not a "chugger", it is more of a hearty mouthfull, and then pause and reflect.

Many thanks to Gusler, my secret Santa, for the bottle.
Many thanks to Greg, the Arrogrant Bastard, for making the stuff.

 784 characters

Photo of Gusler
4.42/5  rDev +2.8%
look: 4 | smell: 4.5 | taste: 4.5 | feel: 4 | overall: 4.5

The beer pours from the bottle a luminous deep copper color with a massive off white head and huge thick sticky sheets of lace to cover the glass. "Oh that smell" To quote Lynard, "Tis hops" that greets your nose, chased by a bit of malt and a lemon-lime crispness, quite a “Hoot”. A tad sweet at the start and the top middling in mouth feel with the finish survigrously hopped with a hard-hitting acidity and a devastatingly dry hop bitter aftertaste. Haven't tasted this much hops since I took a sip of "Hop Oil", which is also a “Hoot” if you have not seen or tried it.

 576 characters

Photo of Longstaff
4.97/5  rDev +15.6%
look: 4.5 | smell: 5 | taste: 5 | feel: 5 | overall: 5

WOW. I don't think I can do this one justice or add to what has already been said, but this is one big, bad, malty, insanely hoppy, kick-ass beer that has everything I love in beer. When you pour this mother out, you can tell it is thick and malty and will have the mouthfeel of syrup. The grapefruity, floral, earthy, and herbal hop aromas can be smelled from across the room. After I poured my first pint, my roomate asked if I had been brewing earlier, and said he could smell the hops as soon as he walked in the room. The flavor of this beer is the closest I have come to heaven. The hop flavors are demanding of your attention by hitting you in the face as well as exhibiting some complex subleties. I detect some grapefruit flavors, pineapple, and pine needles in the hop profile. The bitterness is there but not as bad as you would think because the ultra sweet malt sure subdues it. The malt background is sweet like molasses with some buttery and butterscotch flavors that seem to melt in your mouth. All in all a greatly complex beer that is so drinkable for all of its bigness. All other beers taste like water in comparison.

 1,137 characters

Photo of LarryV
4.75/5  rDev +10.5%
look: 4.5 | smell: 4.5 | taste: 5 | feel: 5 | overall: 4.5

Pours a dense, cloudy reddish amber color with nice frothy head. The aroma is hoppy, floral - rather subtle considering the blast of hops one gets when tasting it. This is a big beer, wonderfully balanced. Despite the high hoppiness, the hops never seem overbearing and seem nicely balanced with the slightly fruity background. Dense, creamy mouthfeel is superb. I think it's very drinkable, but be wary of the alchohol content. Creeps up on you after a few.

 458 characters

Photo of HossMcGraw
4.6/5  rDev +7%
look: 5 | smell: 5 | taste: 4.5 | feel: 5 | overall: 4

Ridiculously over the top beers are kind of a pet peeve of mine, as they're usually not very good, but this one works. The head, carbonation, and mouthfeel of this beer are just exceptional. The taste is indescribeable. It's endlessly complex and delicious. I recall reading a reviewer comparing the taste of this to and english meadow. That's really what this reminds me of, although it's been a while since I've grazed at an English meadow. Go out and try this!

 463 characters

Photo of mickstepp
4.85/5  rDev +12.8%
look: 4.5 | smell: 4.5 | taste: 5 | feel: 5 | overall: 5

Okay here's a test for a beer. Bit of a headcold. Olfactory nerves barely functional. Taste buds not doing much better. I should have waited for a more opportune time to crack open the Ruination but I simply could not resist. First of all, is there a brewery with better packaging and narrative on the bottle? I don't think so. The beer pours golden and slightly cloudy with a big thick head with major staying power. The head thickly laces the pint glass all the way down. Despite my headcold that lovely pungent hop aroma makes it through. And from the first taste I know I'm drinking something special. A little tart, a little sharp. The taste evolves and transitions as it works its way over the tonque and down the throat. Ripe melon to grapefruit. Beautiful citrus and herbal notes. Nicely dry and very, very hoppy but in my view not over-hopped. A true hophead, I have never tasted an overhopped beer. It's an abstract concept to me. As I finish my Ruination I can feel my sinuses clear a bit. My sense of taste and smell renewed. What a lovely curative is Ruination!

 1,074 characters

Photo of ZAP
4.62/5  rDev +7.4%
look: 4 | smell: 4.5 | taste: 4.5 | feel: 5 | overall: 5

Ahhhh...this just in....this Stone Brewery Rocks!!!...What an awesome drinkable hopped up IPA....After reading the label I damn near thought my mouth was going to be in flames moments after pouring this nectar down my throat....but surprisingly this is a highly drinkable 100+ IBU IPA loaded with flavor, aroma, and character....

Let's start with the nose...a strong citrus aroma is present with some subtle pine needle notes as well....the aroma is like an invitation to what sounds like a kick-ass party....and the flavor (the party itself) is everything the aroma (invitation) promised..

I get a real solid citrus flavor...exactly the type of hop flavor I'm looking for in an IPA..Juicy...and almost sweetish...only on the very long finish do I get a whiff of bitterness from the hops...I'm not sure on the hops but there has to be some Cascade and maybe Amarillio as well....just an awesome hop flavor but quitely balanced by what must be a good malt load because this is not unbalanced on my is just simply scrumptious....I can hardly put the glass down as I drink...this is what hops are all hat is tipped once again to Stone for a tremendous beer....I wish I had 3 or 4 more of these tonight but then it wouldn't be just my hat that would be tipped...If you like hops you will love this beer...very drinkable and very, very tasty...

 1,362 characters

Photo of maxpower
4.5/5  rDev +4.7%
look: 4.5 | smell: 4.5 | taste: 4.5 | feel: 4.5 | overall: 4.5

22 oz bottle, pours a bright copper color, nice foamy head, clings to my glass, intense citrusy aroma, the smell makes my nose tingle, all hops. Nice thick with a full mouthfeel, hoppy as hell, still has alot of malt balance, very good, I want more.

 249 characters

Photo of Bighuge
4.52/5  rDev +5.1%
look: 4.5 | smell: 5 | taste: 4.5 | feel: 4.5 | overall: 4

The hue falls somewhere between amber and copper, but has a distinctive glowing orange presence about it as well. A thin sticky off-white head leaves some very nice lace patterns down the walls of my glass. The nose is a virtual hop garden. Floral, spicy, slightly piney, but mostly oily, pungent and resiny. Very nice. The first thing I notice up front on the buds is the bitterness. What a bite. I love it. After that, I notice other hop attributed characteristics: pungency, oilyness, citrus, pine, and to a slighter extent, orange rind. Malt profile really takes a background in this beer. Moreso than any of the other IPAs I've had from Stone. Seems to be around only for balance as I have a hard time picking up any distinctive malt tastes on my palate. This beer is truly all about the hops. Nice firm body of about medium-full. For a beer of this IBU caliber, the drinkability is good.

Let's face it. Stone is one of the best "Big Beer" producers around. And this beer does that reputation justice.

 1,010 characters

Photo of proc
4.67/5  rDev +8.6%
look: 4 | smell: 4.5 | taste: 5 | feel: 4.5 | overall: 4.5

I really like IPA's and this one only emphasizes that fact. Once you start to really like the bitterness of hops, you just can't get enough and Ruination doesn't disappoint. An extremely balanced IPA despite the fact that it rings in at 100 IBU's in the bitterness department. Full, rich and yes, you can taste malt here. No, the malt isn't a big player, but it rings the hops down to the point that they aren't as overwhelming as you are expecting. Began the bomber inside and finished while grilling steaks outside in 35 degree temperatures. Delicious. Thanks Murph for the sample.

 583 characters

Photo of CharlesRiver
4.3/5  rDev 0%
look: 4.5 | smell: 4.5 | taste: 4 | feel: 4.5 | overall: 4.5

Poured a clear copper with a small head. Floural aroma hops are the first thing you notice. There is something else in the smell that is a bit odd, but doesn't turn you off. Not as powerful of a taste as I expected, but still very well balanced. At over 100 IBU's you can imagine that the aftertaste stays for awhile!

 320 characters

Photo of zerk
4.06/5  rDev -5.6%
look: 5 | smell: 4 | taste: 4 | feel: 4 | overall: 4

Pours a beautiful clear copper with a touch of chill haze. Impressive white foam, which settled to 1/4 inch and remained for the duration. Nose is full of floral hops and a touch of bubblegum-like sweetness. Some carmel malt in the flavor, some sweetness, and a ton of in-your-face bitterness. Very carbonated, slightly rough mouthfeel with a meduim body. The bitterness is nicely balanced with sweetness, making this a very drinkable brew. A very solid IPA.

 464 characters

Photo of Jordan
4.97/5  rDev +15.6%
look: 4.5 | smell: 5 | taste: 5 | feel: 5 | overall: 5

Noble hop profile, rich and full bodied bliss. Delightful vanilla/honey and complex floral aromas. Inviting and well centered A-IPA. The label acts as a intimidator, but dont be fooled. Many like-characteristics with Ruination and Anderson Valley Hop Ottin' IPA. Ruination being slightly superior. My advice to anyone who enjoys the IPA, sample this. First class.

 370 characters

Ruination IPA from Stone Brewing
Beer rating: 4.3 out of 5 with 10,870 ratings