Sculpin IPA | Ballast Point Brewing Company

13,837 Ratings
no score
Send samples
Sculpin IPASculpin IPA

Brewed by:
Ballast Point Brewing Company
California, United States

Style: American IPA

Alcohol by volume (ABV): 7.00%

Availability: Year-round

Notes / Commercial Description:
Originally named Northstar IPA. Debuted in 2005.

Added by brentk56 on 04-02-2006

For Trade:
User Ratings & Reviews
Sort by:  Recent | High | Low | Top Raters
Ratings: 13,837 |  Reviews: 2,489
Photo of ChaseTheAce
4.5/5  rDev +3%
look: 4.5 | smell: 4.5 | taste: 4.5 | feel: 4.5 | overall: 4.5

Photo of AdmiralOzone
4.26/5  rDev -2.5%
look: 4.5 | smell: 4 | taste: 4.25 | feel: 4.75 | overall: 4.25

Photo of qcghost
4.75/5  rDev +8.7%

Photo of SlightlyGrey
4.25/5  rDev -2.7%

Photo of sansho
4/5  rDev -8.5%

Photo of Guzzle_McBrew
4/5  rDev -8.5%

Photo of dfillius
4.44/5  rDev +1.6%
look: 4.25 | smell: 4.5 | taste: 4.5 | feel: 4 | overall: 4.5

Stopped by the brewery while visiting parents in SD and picked this one up, let's see if it's worth the hype.

A: Aggressive pour yields 3/4 fingers of off-white head with good retention. Clear golden color. Pretty, noticeably lighter in color than most other IPAs. Slightly more head would be the only improvement I'd ask for.

S: Tropical fruit, lots of pine, musk, caramel malt. Full and nice.

T: Hop dominant in a piney and slightly sulfurous way. Some very minor estery alcohol and malt are in there too, but harsh hop is at the forefront. Overall, the malt character is clean and allow the hops to shine. A great IPA.

M: Pleasantly harsh and hoppy. Again, the malt character is light and clean, allowing the hops to shine.

D: I like it! I would have another and buy it again. Another winning IPA from San Diego.

 820 characters

Photo of monitorpop
4.25/5  rDev -2.7%

Photo of AirBob
4.56/5  rDev +4.3%

Photo of thain709
4.55/5  rDev +4.1%
look: 4.5 | smell: 4.5 | taste: 4.5 | feel: 4 | overall: 5

A - A vibrant, golden yellow body with carbonation bubbles running to the top...a tight, creamy, white head stands about three fingers and by the end of the glass only settles to about one finger...great lacing

S - An unbelievable fruity would not be able to tell that this is a could pass as a candle...citrus fruits really stand out (grapefruit, pineapple, orange, lemon) for the hop characteristics

T - The hops are very plentiful in the flavors...they put away the malty flavor (if there is any)...the only sweetness that was apparent to me was the sweetness from the fruits...I know it's the hops that are giving away to those flavors...but it really tastes like the citrus fruits it's representing...all the flavors from the nose are present (grapefruit, pineapple, orange, lemon)...a tropical dream

M - Medium bodied...very smooth...carbonation doesn't shine through as aggressive hop bite

D - Did someone say drinkability? Wow...I can't say anything more than what has already been said...I was super excited to finally try this beer and now I'm disappointed not having it all the time...Sculpin showed me why it is in the top 20 on this's easily the best IPA I've had to this day

 1,237 characters

Photo of jaidenjb
3/5  rDev -31.4%

Photo of Drucifer
4.5/5  rDev +3%

Photo of ronricorossi
4.25/5  rDev -2.7%

Photo of Josholson666
4.5/5  rDev +3%
look: 4.5 | smell: 4.5 | taste: 4.5 | feel: 4.5 | overall: 4.5

Photo of victory4me
4.25/5  rDev -2.7%

Photo of brendan13
4.47/5  rDev +2.3%
look: 4 | smell: 4.5 | taste: 4.5 | feel: 4.5 | overall: 4.5

Thanks to Smithflipper for this beauty!

A - Dark golden, slightly hazy with a 2cm slightly off white head.
S - Fruity tropical hops abound with some vague pale malt hints.
T - Not unlike the smell; fruity hoppiness with a bit of pale malt to balance it.
M - Lighter side of medium bodied. Quite dry and bitter but not too much so.
O - Very drinkable. A truly hop driven IPA.

 375 characters

Photo of callmemickey
4.82/5  rDev +10.3%
look: 4.5 | smell: 5 | taste: 5 | feel: 4.5 | overall: 4.5

Had three pints on tap at the Khyber in Philly... first bar in Philly to put this bad boy on tap... Had the privilege of trading for a bottle recently (see my other review) and lets just say on tap it was equally as divine... mouthfeel was a tad improved as was the nose... however i already gave it a 5.... can i give it a 5.1 here????

A: Bright orange/amber body... has a radioactive glow to it, which might scare some people but i'll take it as the mark of greatness... the head is a flawless 3/4 inch fluffy white cap... good retention while leaving moderate lacing on the glass (perhaps the only "flaw" in this beer)

S: Heaping citric hops bombard the nose, if i didn't know any better i'd think i was drinking an immaculate mixed drink on the shores of tahiti on a cloudless day... that being said it was dark, gloomy, rainy Philadelphia... ah, spring in Philly... back to the beer... The hops take on a dynamic character, layering bright blast of grapefuit, mango, peach, apricot, orange, passion fruit ... its like drinking a Jackson Pollock painting

T: If there was an ideal citrus IPA flavor profile, this is it. Like the nose, the fruit flavored bitterness is relentless. There is enough here to explore for days. Almost no alcohol presence, and a nice, subtle sweet malt backbone keeps this beer from becoming juice.

M: Smooth, crisp finish. Refreshing. Nice bitter bite. Ideal carbonation.

D: I'm mesmerized by this beer. While its not Pliny the Younger.... this beer is right there and NEEDS to be respected as such. If it wasn't for a law school final that I need to prepare for, I would have stayed all night. I'm serious... I would have been at the bar from 5pm til they carted me out drinking this gem.

 1,726 characters

Photo of BrazilianAussie
4.25/5  rDev -2.7%

Photo of DenverHopHead
4.46/5  rDev +2.1%
look: 3.75 | smell: 4.5 | taste: 4.5 | feel: 4.5 | overall: 4.5

On tap; poured into a pint glass.
Appearance - bubbly gold; modest white head that leaves solid lacing.
Smell - the citrus hops, mango and apricot grabs your attention and your senses; well done!
Taste - that's good; follows the nose brilliantly! More please!
Feel - an IPA like it should be; hop forward, but not overly aggressive, well balanced and easy drinking!
Overall - available in a 12 pack and in a can, bonus!

 419 characters

Photo of Tschnab
4/5  rDev -8.5%

Photo of NickyDee21
4.75/5  rDev +8.7%

Photo of craftaholic
4.5/5  rDev +3%

Photo of claytong
3.25/5  rDev -25.6%

Photo of Eman17
4.23/5  rDev -3.2%
look: 3.5 | smell: 4.25 | taste: 4.25 | feel: 4.5 | overall: 4.25

Photo of sinstaineddemon
3.67/5  rDev -16%
look: 4 | smell: 4.5 | taste: 3.5 | feel: 3.5 | overall: 3

A - transparent straw, pilsener color, with almost two fingers of white head that reduces to half of a finger quickly, moderate amounts of active visible carbonation

S - super citrine aroma, some serious grapefruit bitterness notes with a great piney side, the fruit aromas continue with some peach and apricot aromas, as the label suggests, though i dont pick up on the mango it refers to

T - wow, whered the fruit go. in the taste, the hops are completely piney, some background dark sweetness, like a bit of brown sugar, theres a sense of a cloying fruitiness, but it never arrives, just hop bitterness throughout the entire taste

M&D - you need to be a hophead to enjoy this, not because its huge on the hops, but that its only characteristic is a superb hop profile, maybe this one sat too long, (only a week in my cabinet) as a pervious reviewer mentions, the supreme quality of this brew is its linger-osity, you can feel/taste the hops for minutes after each sip

 974 characters

Sculpin IPA from Ballast Point Brewing Company
4.37 out of 5 based on 13,837 ratings.
  • About Us

    Founded in Boston in 1996, BeerAdvocate (BA) is your go-to resource for beer powered by an independent community of enthusiasts and professionals dedicated to supporting and promoting better beer.

    Learn More
  • Our Community

    Comprised of consumers and industry professionals, many of whom started as members of this site, our community is one of the oldest, largest, and most respected beer communities online.
  • Our Events

    Since 2003 we've hosted over 60 world-class beer festivals to bring awareness to independent brewers and educate attendees.
  • Our Magazine

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