Calm Before The Storm | Ballast Point Brewing Company

Calm Before The StormCalm Before The Storm
1,176 Ratings
Calm Before The StormCalm Before The Storm

Brewed by:
Ballast Point Brewing Company
California, United States

Style: Cream Ale

Alcohol by volume (ABV): 5.50%

Availability: Rotating

Notes / Commercial Description:
Calm Before the Storm came from a quest for a warm weather alternative to our Victory at Sea Imperial Porter. Like its more robust cousin, we infuse a punch of flavor using cold brewed Caffé Calabria coffee and a hint of vanilla. But this time, we added it to a lighter-bodied golden cream ale. The end result is a surprisingly bright, coffee-forward beer that’s perfectly refreshing.

15 IBUs

Added by billab914 on 04-24-2015

Bros Score:
User Ratings & Reviews
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Ratings: 1,176 |  Reviews: 272
Photo of braskey
4.3/5  rDev +11.1%
look: 4 | smell: 4.5 | taste: 4.25 | feel: 4.25 | overall: 4.25

Photo of Eammon1920
3.75/5  rDev -3.1%
look: 3.75 | smell: 3.75 | taste: 3.75 | feel: 3.75 | overall: 3.75

Photo of Kegatron
3.75/5  rDev -3.1%
look: 3.75 | smell: 3.75 | taste: 3.75 | feel: 3.75 | overall: 3.75

Photo of BucBasil
3.18/5  rDev -17.8%
look: 4 | smell: 3.5 | taste: 3 | feel: 3.5 | overall: 2.75

A: Poured from the 330ml bottle into a pint glass. Bought at an expat grocery store in Shanghai China. The beer is a solid orange color with a late foamy off-white head.

S: Malty and sweet with a little of the advertised vanilla but not really any coffee. Smells more bready than anticipated with a hint of brown sugar.

T: Bright and refreshing but the cream ale overpowers the coffee flavor, which isn't very noticeable. The beer does have a vanilla sweetness in the back along with a sweet malty character that is perhaps its most dominant note. Reminds me more of a cream soda with a little something extra added. This was surprising as many of the reviews said the coffee flavor was really strong, but I didn't get it. Kind of a letdown for me.

F: The beer is smooth with just a little kick of carbonation. Cream character is nice.

O: This seems to be a good summer beer, but the unique coffee aspect just didn't happen. There was some vanilla and a touch of sweetness which made it a little different, but not enough for me to go for it again.

 1,052 characters

Photo of briandschorr
4.02/5  rDev +3.9%
look: 4.25 | smell: 4 | taste: 4 | feel: 4 | overall: 4

My wife is watching Ellen so I'm trying some BP today. What can I say? Another great beer from BP. The look: great. There is a reddish-orange color and the nose is vanilla and coffee. A decent one-finger head. The taste follows the nose. The bitterness is slight, which I like, and the feel is smooth, medium bodied and full of carbonation. not the best that BP has ever put out but this is still a beer worth a try.

 416 characters

Photo of armock
4/5  rDev +3.4%
look: 4 | smell: 4 | taste: 4 | feel: 4 | overall: 4

Photo of Fantasy_Growlers
4.22/5  rDev +9%
look: 4.75 | smell: 4 | taste: 4.5 | feel: 3.75 | overall: 4

Photo of Boto
3.52/5  rDev -9%
look: 3.75 | smell: 3.5 | taste: 3.5 | feel: 3.5 | overall: 3.5

12oz bottle: This one pours a clear, amber color. There was about a finger of an off white head that didn’t linger or leave any lacing. Lighter nose. Definitely a whiff of coffee. Not too much else getting by the coffee. Decent enough tasting. Medium bodied caramel malts with a bit of coffee flavor. Maybe a hint of vanilla. OK, but nothing to make it memorable.

 365 characters

Photo of Lone_Freighter
3.91/5  rDev +1%
look: 3.75 | smell: 4 | taste: 4 | feel: 3.75 | overall: 3.75

This was poured into a pint glass. The appearance was a nice looking transparent hazy burnt orange to ruddy yellow color. A one finger white foamy head started and glided gently into the beer. Lacing was semi-sticky and mostly messy in its arrangement around the glass. The smell had a nice sweet vanilla rolling into a light bitter to sweet cocoa and a sly bitter coffee bean to balance. The taste was sticky sweet with the vanilla taking hold to gloss over the sweet contour of the cocoa. Light bitter coffee beans come back nicely. A smooth sweet vanilla/coffee aftertaste rolls into the finish. On the palate, this one sat about a light to medium on the body with a really nice sessionability about it. Carbonation runs nice and smooth underneath. Not as creamy on my tongue, but nice. Overall, for a cream ale, this one is a bit different, mostly hits the marks of the style.

 880 characters

Photo of Antg8989
4.3/5  rDev +11.1%
look: 4 | smell: 4.5 | taste: 4.25 | feel: 4.25 | overall: 4.25

By far the best cream ale I've ever had. Coffee and vanilla on the nose as well as on the palette. Pours surprisingly orange with no head, although this has been sitting in the fridge for a while. Would pick up again if I'm trying to change things up.

 251 characters

Photo of -chii-
3.24/5  rDev -16.3%
look: 3 | smell: 4 | taste: 3 | feel: 3 | overall: 3

Photo of Aceofbass
5/5  rDev +29.2%
look: 5 | smell: 5 | taste: 5 | feel: 5 | overall: 5

Photo of Fishwhisperer
3.89/5  rDev +0.5%
look: 3.75 | smell: 4 | taste: 3.75 | feel: 4 | overall: 4

Photo of DMc8ride
3.85/5  rDev -0.5%
look: 3.75 | smell: 3.75 | taste: 4 | feel: 3.75 | overall: 3.75

Photo of WoodBrew
3.75/5  rDev -3.1%
look: 3.75 | smell: 3.75 | taste: 3.75 | feel: 3.75 | overall: 3.75

I bought this beer off the single shelf at Binnys. The beer poured a clear golden with white head that is not leaving any lace. The scent carried coffee and vanilla and the mix almost gave a peppery note. The taste was coffee leaning with vanilla latte finish. The mouthfeel was lighter in body with good carbonation. Overall it's interesting.

 346 characters

Photo of BobbyOlson
4.3/5  rDev +11.1%
look: 3.75 | smell: 3.75 | taste: 4.5 | feel: 4.25 | overall: 4.75

Photo of Timtac
3.97/5  rDev +2.6%
look: 3.25 | smell: 3.75 | taste: 4.25 | feel: 3.75 | overall: 4

Photo of cmsfish
3.58/5  rDev -7.5%
look: 4 | smell: 4 | taste: 3.25 | feel: 3.75 | overall: 3.5

Photo of atlbravsrno1
3.75/5  rDev -3.1%
look: 3.75 | smell: 3.75 | taste: 3.75 | feel: 3.75 | overall: 3.75

Photo of cliff1066
3.81/5  rDev -1.6%
look: 3.75 | smell: 4 | taste: 3.75 | feel: 3.75 | overall: 3.75

Photo of AmeriCanadian
3.91/5  rDev +1%
look: 3.75 | smell: 4 | taste: 4 | feel: 3.75 | overall: 3.75

Nice cream ale, vanilla-heavy (which I like), providing a definitive cream soda experience. Not a lot of breadth or depth of aroma or taste, but an easy sipper to be sure.

 171 characters

Photo of brpendergast85
3/5  rDev -22.5%
look: 3 | smell: 3 | taste: 3 | feel: 3 | overall: 3

Photo of Chuckdiesel24
4.02/5  rDev +3.9%
look: 3.75 | smell: 4.25 | taste: 4 | feel: 3.75 | overall: 4

Photo of Nugganooch
3.94/5  rDev +1.8%
look: 4 | smell: 4.25 | taste: 3.75 | feel: 3.75 | overall: 4

12oz bottle – Imperial Nonic glass
First noted 10/04/15

Golden blonde body with a nice refined brightness. Dense cloud of taupe colored cream hangs true for some time before finally residing back into the glass. Large globs of stick hang on to the glass walls in a random pattern. Smells like a vanilla latte. Like stepping foot into Caffé Calabria for the first time. A rush of fresh earthy roasted beans with a vanilla cream sweetness and some mildly toasted and nutty malted grains. The flavor follows suit with a showcase of gourmet Calabria roast. Super fresh, earthy, and slightly nutty with a sweet vanilla essence to balance. Low actual perceived bitterness and a very smooth texture on the palate. Moderate to light in body with a dry lasting finish.
A solid attempt at this new found style. Might as well join them right. Probably not a regular for my personal line up but cool to grab every now and then.

 931 characters

Photo of Oopssorryy
4.09/5  rDev +5.7%
look: 4.25 | smell: 4 | taste: 4 | feel: 4.25 | overall: 4.25

Pours a beautiful amber gold, with an ample off white head. The head didn't last, disappearing eniterly in about five minutes, with nonexistent lacing. The body of the beer is perfectly clear, show casing a large amount of vigorous carbonation. The nose is dominated by black coffee. There is a nutty sweetness, and a very genital vanilla tone serves as backdrop to the coffee forward scent.

The flavor profile is actually lighter on the coffee than I was expecting. While it's definitely there at all stages of the tasting experience, it is often times supplanted by a lovely nut profile. The flavor is also much more bitter than the nose initially lets on. There is sweetness to be found here though, right as you swallow a small burst of a creamy sweetness pulls through. This quickly becomes a background flavor, being overtaken by a coffee bitterness, but it is this sweetness, combined with the nutty flavors that coats the tongue.

Mouthfeel is smooth, medium bodied and full of carbonation. The carbonation is tightly controlled however, making for a uniform drinking experience. Overall a great beer, and one I'd revisit in the future.

 1,145 characters

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Calm Before The Storm from Ballast Point Brewing Company
Beer rating: 3.87 out of 5 with 1,176 ratings
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