Big Swell IPA | Maui Brewing Co.

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Big Swell IPABig Swell IPA
Very Good
Big Swell IPABig Swell IPA

Brewed by:
Maui Brewing Co.
Hawaii, United States

Style: American IPA

Alcohol by volume (ABV): 6.80%

Availability: Year-round

Notes / Commercial Description:
Tropical citrus hops burst from this dry-hopped India Pale Ale.

82 IBU

User Reviews & Ratings
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Reviews: 440 | Ratings: 1,187
Photo of jwc215
3.84/5  rDev +1.6%
look: 4 | smell: 3.75 | taste: 3.75 | feel: 4 | overall: 4

12 oz. can - Canned on 12/17/18:

Pours yellow with no noticeable carbonation. Big foamy white head thin and lasts.

The smell is of tropical and citric hops.

The taste is of tropical and citric hops with cracker-like malt backing. Refreshing bitter touch in the finish.

It is medium-bodied and very smooth. Alcohol well-covered.

While it is nothing particularly unique it is a very good representation of a West Coast IPA. Very drinkable. Hops show well with enough malt balance to keep things together. Recommended!

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Photo of DrBeergood
3.62/5  rDev -4.2%
look: 3.5 | smell: 4 | taste: 3.25 | feel: 4 | overall: 3.75

"It kind of tastes like smoked... dirt..."

Big oof.

That's the first I heard about it. I had already bought 24 of them. I've got to at least review them before I call this guy out.

It's bright and golden. You notice hops on the nose, and you can tell it's dry-hopped. Definitely tropical citrus, which I usually favor towards.

The hops aren't bitey, but it is a heavy, flavor-forward brew. It leaves something on the finish, it hangs around.

I would recommend this brew to anyone with a curious palate: 'tropical citrus hops burst from this dry-hopped india pale ale' and there you go, it delivers.

Admittedly I don't know if I'd tear through a 6-pack in an evening, but with a friend? "Another Maui Big Swell? Alright then." I don't got anything much against it, I've had IPAs that made me say "uuugh" quite a bit more.

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Photo of sdmrtn
4.8/5  rDev +27%
look: 5 | smell: 5 | taste: 5 | feel: 4 | overall: 4.5

On tap on de big island Kona ...this is a very delicious tropical tasting ipa. No added fruit, but the local hops deliver a subtle yet distinct tropical/pineapple/mango/ginger flavor... Wonderful to say the least. This is de kine more bettah big island brew brah. Drink em up brahddas. Big swell... Hawaii very special kine beer. This My favorite brew in Hawaii along with Sierra Nevada Hazy Little Thing... equally magnificent..... Aloha

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Photo of vette2006c5r
4.09/5  rDev +8.2%
look: 4.5 | smell: 4.25 | taste: 4 | feel: 4 | overall: 4

Big Swell pours a copper color, a little haze, with a long lasting lacing head. Rich creamy hoppy aroma. Flavor is fresh, well put together, good hop flavor that blends very well. Good body and feel. Overall, a very good IPA, creamy feel, well constructed.

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Photo of Reidrover
4/5  rDev +5.8%
look: 4 | smell: 4 | taste: 4 | feel: 4 | overall: 4

12 oz can from a six pack from Tsunami Taproom in Salem OR
$10 six.
Pours the traditional deep orange coloured body with a huge thick and creamy off white head.
Aromas a bit subdued but of mango, papaya ,with a bit of peach skin..nice.
Taste similar and very well balanced,,but nice hop bite towards the end.
Mouth feel is very nice medium to medium heavy and with nice medium carbonation..semi dry finish.
A good traditional IPA

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Photo of VABA
3.8/5  rDev +0.5%
look: 3.75 | smell: 3.75 | taste: 3.75 | feel: 3.75 | overall: 4

A-Pours a hazy amber color with a generous head and lacing
A-Aroma has tropical citrus and hoppy hints
T-The taste follows the nose with tropical citrus and hoppy flavors
M-A medium bodied well carbonated beer
O-A nice IPA

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Photo of summitsix
4.04/5  rDev +6.9%
look: 4 | smell: 3.75 | taste: 4.25 | feel: 4 | overall: 4

Drank this one overlooking a beautiful Wailea beach, a perfect pairing

12 ounce can dated 01/16/19 (wow! only two weeks old) poured into pint glass

L: beautiful golden brew, definitely filtered
S: citrusy hop bouquet
T: classic west coast style IPA, hoppy goodness upfront balanced by malts and slightly bitter finish. very refreshing, smooth, and delicious
F: Creamy, palatable

You won’t find a better IPA in Hawaii

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Photo of jimmah120
3.85/5  rDev +1.9%
look: 3.75 | smell: 3.75 | taste: 3.75 | feel: 4.25 | overall: 4

12oz can with the old 70s shape and style aluminum

Full bodied and slightly syrupy with a sweet and tropical smell. The taste is plenty of sweet malt, dank hops, and some drying alcohol.

If you want an IPA with "tropical" hop flavor, this is the best I've found. They must be sourcing some local-grown hops, because this thing is fresh, fresh, fresh. Peach, dank, vegetal goodness

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Photo of sjrider
4.06/5  rDev +7.4%
look: 4.25 | smell: 3.75 | taste: 4.25 | feel: 4 | overall: 4

On tap at Maui Brewing in Kihei. Nice looking slightly hazy honey gold color with white head leaving a bit of lacing. Decent hop bite with reasonable bitterness, quite good.

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Photo of DaveMaciolek21
3.99/5  rDev +5.6%
look: 3.75 | smell: 4 | taste: 4 | feel: 4 | overall: 4

My first beer from Maui Brewing. I was expecting something light, a tropical attempt at a beer style I feel is best when robust. This was a pleasant surprise--bold, juicy, substantial. Can't wait to try other beers by this brewer. Impressive!

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Photo of ViggieMech
4.78/5  rDev +26.5%
look: 4.75 | smell: 4.75 | taste: 4.75 | feel: 5 | overall: 4.75

Purchased at Pearl Harbor Navy Exchange June 2017. Tasted this date. Look: Orange hazy color Smell:Mango and citrus. Pleasing! Taste: Full and satisfying. Goes down smooth! Feel: Slightly carbonated and tingly. Nice! I'm an DIPA guy and this DIPA definitely makes my top 10 list! Would definitely try again if I could find it on the Mainland!

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Photo of PlinyMeNow
3.54/5  rDev -6.3%
look: 4 | smell: 3.75 | taste: 3.5 | feel: 3 | overall: 3.5

Not extraordinary, but overall a solid IPA and one of the better beers I’ve had in Hawaii. Straw colored with a nice foamy white head, aroma of fresh grass, soil, orange juice, pine, some lemon, a bit wheaty, with a bit of cracker malt, some grapefruit. Also perhaps faint tropicals in the background such as pineapple, but I prefer these notes to be stronger. Taste follows accordingly, hop forward but not as much as I would like, balanced with bready malt but also some grainy hints in the background that I don’t care for. Finish is a dull grapefruit bitterness that lingers a surprising amount. I fond it pretty enjoyable and refreshing.

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Photo of Dnoullett
4.56/5  rDev +20.6%
look: 4.5 | smell: 4 | taste: 4.75 | feel: 4.75 | overall: 4.75

I was surprised by the BA score as I see this as a much better beer than the score would represent. A really nice taste that keeps you coming back for more. Good smell, and very consistently brewed. I rate it much higher than the current average.

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Photo of Bluecrow
3.67/5  rDev -2.9%
look: 4 | smell: 3.75 | taste: 3.5 | feel: 3.75 | overall: 3.75

-hazy golden can pour with 1 cm of foam. The light aroma is citrus and resin. The flavor includes a moderate malt base and orange and pine hop notes. The hop bitterness is moderate. The hop bite persists in the finish.

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Photo of gatornation
3.81/5  rDev +0.8%
look: 3.75 | smell: 4 | taste: 3.75 | feel: 3.75 | overall: 3.75

Pours a slight hazed light golden color with a white. Smell was nicely tropical with citrus mixed in Taste was more bitter than the smell but was good with a nice hop profile of pine and citrus. A nice mouth feel with a sweet malt finish. A nice serviceable IPA, would have on tap again.

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Photo of jameswaldo
4.41/5  rDev +16.7%
look: 4.25 | smell: 4.5 | taste: 4.5 | feel: 4.25 | overall: 4.25

A can of this fine IPA had been lurking deep in the back of my fridge's beyond; today I found it had rotated to the front in time for drinking. When I checked can's bottom, and read "CANNED ON 112216 0807," and figured this Big Swell was more than a year old, for sure I had to get analytical about it! I believe IPAs were built for gracious aging, and this beer qualifies hugely.
Poured high into my favorite Spiegelau IPA glass. Made a fine deep firm foam that settled in two minutes to make a good persistent ring of fine bubbles and excellent lacing as I drink.
Color's a very turbid SRM 6: a custardy orange. Smell's delightful: hops are fruity, acidic.
Taste makes my tongue sit up, and mouth-watering bitter lasts well into a good bitter aftertaste. The mouth feel is just a bit thin, watery, but the water tastes good, too.
It's a horrible shame this beer had to travel so far to upstate NY, but I'm glad it did!

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Photo of The-Adjunct-Hippie
3.85/5  rDev +1.9%
look: 4.25 | smell: 4.25 | taste: 3.5 | feel: 3.75 | overall: 4

Canned 9/27. Golden honey color, with a tall, creamy head of 3 fingers.

Fresh aromas of citra hops, pineapple, grapefruit, lemon zest.

Orange rind starts this off, with some crackery malt and some piney bitterness. Orange squirts and hints of onion come forward, leading to a rindy/piney bitterness at the end. The onion may be from the hops fading a bit.

Crisp, firm bitterness with a slight resinous character.

Overall, a great west-coast style/island-style IPA. Very bright and tropical, I'd love to try it fresher.

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Photo of zeff80
4/5  rDev +5.8%
look: 4 | smell: 4 | taste: 4 | feel: 4 | overall: 4

Poured a clear, golden-yellow color with a small, white head of bubbly foam. It smelled of pineapple, grapefruit and toasted caramel. Nice toasted caramel flavor with a citrusy kick.

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Photo of WoodBrew
3.8/5  rDev +0.5%
look: 3.5 | smell: 4 | taste: 3.75 | feel: 3.75 | overall: 3.75

I got a can of this from a beer store in concord, OH. It poured a hazy orangish with white head that is not leaving any lace. The scent had hints of bitter citrus peel. The taste was nicely balanced and easy to drink with grapefruit presence. The mouthfeel is lighter in body with good carbonation. Overall it's a solid beer.

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Photo of Czequershuus
4.37/5  rDev +15.6%
look: 4 | smell: 4.5 | taste: 4.5 | feel: 4 | overall: 4.25

This beer pours clear amber with an average head. The aroma features a big hit of bitter grapefruit pith, pine, pineapple, strawberry, and caramel. The flavor starts juicy with pineapple and mango, caramel, grapefruit pith and orange pith. The mouthfeel is fairly thick with moderate foamy carbonation. Overall this is a really nice west coast style IPA, with solid bitterness and caramel malts.

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Photo of ChrisMon02
4/5  rDev +5.8%
look: 4 | smell: 4 | taste: 4 | feel: 4 | overall: 4

12 oz can about 7 weeks old.

Slightly hazy-light orange pour with a big 2 finger head that lasts. Nice lacing sticks to the sides of the glass.

Smells of pineapple, a touch of pine and melon.

Taste follows the nose nicely. A bit sweet but finishes dry enough to balance. Some bitterness creeps on the back end.

Mouthfeel is pleasant. Medium carbonation and body allows for easy drinking.

I am surprised at the low ratings. This is tasty and fulfilling. I would gladly have again.

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Photo of RyanK252
3.86/5  rDev +2.1%
look: 4.25 | smell: 3.75 | taste: 3.75 | feel: 4 | overall: 4

Can poured into a BarrelHouse Brewing Co pint glass

A: Pours golden amber with a frothy off white head that settles to a light layer and leaves some nice lacing.

S: Citrus zest, light pine, tropical fruit, floral notes, biscuity malt, and honey sweetness.

T: Citrus, grapefruit and lemon, tropical fruit, pineapple, mango, and a little passion fruit and faint peach, floral and grassy notes, pine, biscuity malt, and a touch of honey sweetness.

M: Medium body, moderate carbonation.

O: Solid IPA.

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Photo of brewerburgundy
4.02/5  rDev +6.3%
look: 4.25 | smell: 4 | taste: 4 | feel: 4 | overall: 4

16oz pour, nonic pint glass at Maui Brewing Waikiki.

Fantastic looking IPA on the lighter side. Large frothy head with excellent lacing.

The nose is very fruity; peach, pineapple, and grapefruit.

Medium bodied and juicy sweet. Flavors of lychee, white grapes, stone fruit, and grapefruit.

The body is ample with carbonation to keep it in check. Drying finish with moderate to high bitterness.

When I first had Big Swell I was surprised at how good it was. I moved to Oahu when the state of Hawaiian beer was still questionable, behind the curve. In the last three years the state has gained several very good breweries and Big Swell IPA has remained a stalwart local beer. Try.

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Photo of superspak
4.03/5  rDev +6.6%
look: 4.5 | smell: 4 | taste: 4 | feel: 4 | overall: 4

12 ounce can into tulip glass, canned on 5/8/2017. Pours lightly hazy/cloudy medium golden/amber color with a 2 finger fairly dense and rocky white head with incredible retention, that reduces to a large cap that lasts the whole glass. Thick foamy lacing clings around the glass, with a fair amount of streaming carbonation. Fantastic appearance. Aromas of big grapefruit, tangerine, pineapple, peach, passion fruit, mango, lemon zest, orange peel, light pepper, pine, honey, cracker, bread, herbal, and floral/grassy earthiness. Damn nice aromas with great balance and complexity of citrus/fruity/tropical/earthy hops and moderate pale malt notes; with great strength. Taste of big grapefruit, tangerine, pineapple, peach, passion fruit, mango, lemon zest, orange peel, light pepper, pine, honey, cracker, bread, herbal, and floral/grassy earthiness. Light-moderate pine, grassy, citrus peel, spicy bitterness on the finish. Lingering notes of grapefruit, tangerine, pineapple, peach, passion fruit, mango, lemon/orange peel, pepper, pine, honey, cracker, bread, and herbal/floral/grassy earthiness on the finish for a while. Great complexity, robustness, and balance of citrus/fruity/tropical/earthy hops and moderate pale malt flavors; with an awesome malt/bitterness balance, and zero lingering hop astringency after the finish. Light-moderate dryness from lingering bitterness, increasing through the glass. Medium carbonation and body; with a very smooth, moderate crisp, bready/grainy/sticky, and slightly resinous balanced mouthfeel that is great. Zero warming alcohol for 6.8%. Overall this is an excellent IPA! All around great complexity, robustness, and balance of citrus/fruity/tropical/earthy hops and moderate pale malt flavors; very smooth, crisp, and pretty refreshing to drink; with the balanced bitter/drying finish. Very dank, vibrant, and juicy on hops; nice malt backbone, with no residual sweetness. A very enjoyable offering.

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Photo of barnzy78
3.7/5  rDev -2.1%
look: 3.75 | smell: 4.25 | taste: 3.5 | feel: 3.5 | overall: 3.5

12oz can, thanks to my friend, Derek, for giving me a can to try
A - opaque tangerine colored ale with a fluffy off-white head that leaves some spotty lacing
S - nice hoppy aroma with passion fruit, lemon-lime, and orange zest
T - big bold and very bitter hop presence; notes of passion fruit and lemon-lime dominate the palate; some orange zest, wheat, pineapple, and a bit of light caramel in the background
M - medium body, very resinous, finishing bitter and semi-dry
O - good but not great American IPA. Glad to try it, but I won't be buying it in the future.

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Big Swell IPA from Maui Brewing Co.
Beer rating: 3.78 out of 5 with 1,187 ratings