Even Keel Session IPA | Ballast Point Brewing Company

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Even Keel Session IPAEven Keel Session IPA

Brewed by:
Ballast Point Brewing Company
California, United States | website

Style: American Pale Ale (APA)

Alcohol by volume (ABV): 3.80%

Availability: Rotating

Notes / Commercial Description:
A session beer for Hop-heads, this ale gets double dry-hopped.

Added by xlperro on 06-06-2006

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Reviews: 164 | Ratings: 869
Photo of madelfonatree
4.29/5  rDev +11.1%
look: 4.25 | smell: 4.5 | taste: 4.25 | feel: 4 | overall: 4.25

15285 can label enjoyed January 21, 2016 in a stemless wine glass.
Look – Dark orange almost copper. Finger of white medium bubbled head. Nice lacing. See through.
Smell – Musty. Dank. Malt. Hop.
Taste – Pine. Must. There is alcohol. Malt.
Feel – Dry finish. Alcohol and hop burn. Creamy.
Overall – This reminds me a lot of Alpha King. I like a musty IPA.

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Photo of BEERchitect
4.02/5  rDev +4.1%
look: 3.75 | smell: 4.25 | taste: 4 | feel: 3.75 | overall: 4

With the somber alcohol content of pale ale but the hoppy thrust of IPA, the balance of Ballast Point's "session IPA" is anything but even keel. However that's their namesake and that's how things go down in the San Diego brewing region.

Even Keel's color is a mildly hazed light gold with a creamy and fluid crown. Its aromatic display is rife with citrus, tropical and orchard fruit for a bright bouquet that's floral, fruity and tantalizing. With the supple sweet honey and caramel flavors seemingly fructose in nature, the malt character is little more than a creamy fruit juice character.

As the floral and fruity presence remains high, the sweetness and light creaminess fades swiftly to allow the hops to take precedence. That's when the racy vibrancy of pink grapefruit, tangerine, nectarine, mango, pineapple and honeydew take hold and enliven the middle palate with its luring fruit taste without the associated sweetness of those fruits.

And as the taste leaves the palate, the beer is dry, refreshing and very crisp with a medium-length extension of citrus rind, tea and pine. As an ultra thirst quencher, its an ideal beer for easing into a night, pairing with sushi or a way to extend the evening without compromising sanity.

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Photo of russpowell
4.27/5  rDev +10.6%
look: 4.5 | smell: 4.25 | taste: 4.25 | feel: 4.25 | overall: 4.25

Pours an effervescent bronze with 3+ fingers of pearl colored head. Very nice head retention & lacing

S: Mango & grapefruit rind, plus breadyness

T: Follows the nose, light breadyness, a little grassiness & lime up front. A little lemon grass, plus dryness & a little Kafir lime as this warms. Finishes dry, slightly astringent with grapefruit & mango

MF: Light/medium body fairly firm carbonation, nice balance. Carbonation softens up as this warms

This drank very easy & had a lot of flavor for the ABV, there are better out there, but this is well worth a try

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Photo of cfalls
4.16/5  rDev +7.8%
look: 3.5 | smell: 4.25 | taste: 4.25 | feel: 4.25 | overall: 4

L - golden color, not much haze, head fades quickly

S - smarties, fruit cup, especially pineapple, some floral notes

T - fruit forward, somewhat sweet, pear, white grape, slightly bitter grassy finish

F - thin, medium carbonation, clean finish

O - can't think of a better beer at this abv

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Photo of puboflyons
3.81/5  rDev -1.3%
look: 4.5 | smell: 4 | taste: 3.75 | feel: 3.25 | overall: 3.75

From the can. Sampled on December 19, 2015.

The pour is an attractive looking medium amber-copper with a tremendous off-white head that has great retention.

The aroma is cut grass, pine, and blossoms with a touch of caramel, grain and toasted bread underneath.

Light to medium body.

The taste flirts with toasted bread and cereal and then the grassy and pine dry hop bitterness emerges at the finish.

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Photo of andrewjraab
3.73/5  rDev -3.4%
look: 4 | smell: 3.5 | taste: 3.75 | feel: 4 | overall: 3.75

A - Burnt orange with a frothy white head that weaves a web of lace all the way.

S - Citrus, orange rind, grapefruit, bread dough, piney.

T - Citrus hops, piney, balanced by a caramel flavored malt, grains, bread dough, yeast, light and crisp mouth feel.

O - Solid Session IPA and since the ABV is so low you can really crush these and not get smashed.

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Photo of rodbeermunch
4.54/5  rDev +17.6%
look: 3.75 | smell: 4.75 | taste: 4.75 | feel: 4.25 | overall: 4.25

Wow, this is super straw levels of yellow light with lots of clarity. Nobody would think this is a good beer just by looking at it. Now the aroma, yowza, so much hops. Not bitter, just tropical and piney.

Legit 1st tier session ipa, the mouthfeel is good and watery, very good for a hot day. Clean and bright. Definite summertime golf and pool beer.

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Photo of flyingpig
3.89/5  rDev +0.8%
look: 4 | smell: 3.75 | taste: 3.75 | feel: 4 | overall: 4.25

355ml Can from BottleDog (Glasgow, £2.80):
Fresh & hoppy with lots of flavour despite the low abv. Good bitterness with nice citrus & pine hops. Definitely one of the better session IPA's & very easy to drink, maybe not quite as good as Stone's Go To IPA or Founder's All Day IPA but it runs them very close & is a nice beer that I wouldn't mind getting again.

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Photo of Zraly
4.11/5  rDev +6.5%
look: 5 | smell: 4 | taste: 4 | feel: 4 | overall: 4.25

Bright copper with a two-finger head. Beautiful pour from the can into IPA glass.

Malty enough to balance out the zesty, herbal hops. Clean and very light. Crisp and refreshing, and at 3.6%, it doesn't get any better for a session ale. Perfect if you are getting your drink on earlier in the day and plan on making it into the night.

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Photo of WoodBrew
3.93/5  rDev +1.8%
look: 3.5 | smell: 4.25 | taste: 4 | feel: 3.5 | overall: 3.75

The Even Keel is a very good session ipa.....The beer poured a clear copper with thin white head that is not lacing. The scent is pine resin with hints of bitter citrus. The taste is bitter with pine leaning hops....finishes clean and slightly lemony. The mouthfeel is lighter in body with good carbonation. Overall....YUMMY!

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Photo of TheBrewo
3.88/5  rDev +0.5%
look: 4 | smell: 4 | taste: 3.75 | feel: 3.75 | overall: 4

We pour Even Keel into our KCCO imperial pint glasses. It shows a deeper, shimmering copper coloring, and puts forth a finger and a half tall head of chunky, iced bubbles the color of a singed marshmallow. This retains quite well, leaving the thickest mesh of lacing etched symmetrically and uniformly around our glasses. This is highly reproducible with a swirl of your glass. Carbonation appears to be active, while no haze or sediment is appreciated. The aroma is springy and fresh, composed of citric and green grassy hops, toasted pale and light caramel grain, rice krispie cereal graininess, white sugar, vanilla buttercream icing, beet juice, lemon pound cake, bittered cantaloupe rind, crushed vitamin C tablets, soft toffee sugars, Styrofoam, dried straw, boxed orange juice, toasted and salted sunflower seeds, and oily, perfumed moisturizer. The flavor is much more malt forward than one would expect, but it’s clean, given its blend of icy mineral water, coppery yeastiness, bitter pale, pilsner, and soured barley, biting citric, grassy, and earthy hops, cucumber water, vegetal and metallic green bell pepper skins, freshly cut flower stems, and green, under ripe bananas. The aftertaste gives nice lingering bitterness of citric and soapy hoppiness and Elmer’s glue. The body is light and the carbonation is lightly medium. Each sip gives nice slurp and smack, with surprisingly hearty creaminess and frothiness despite its otherwise airy presentation. The mouth is initially coated in this creamy, frothiness, but this eventually devolves into a patchy, chalky slowness. The abv is incredibly easy, and the beer drinks back like a session beer should.

Overall, this is a nice session ale, and probably one of the easier, more “mindless” ones out there. By “mindless”, what we’re really trying to say is that you just don’t need to think about it. There is nothing that is outright offensive, but at the same time, there is nothing curious, or densely complex about it that makes you want to dig any deeper. The hops are there, and nicely bitter through the aftertaste. They brush up reasonably well enough against a surprisingly full grain profile for such a light beer. In a perfect world, these flavoring hops would be a bit more present, but by no means were they missing. As far as session ales go, this one holds the abv to the far opposite end of the spectrum, at a lowly 3.8%. This is great though, because for people like us who like to keep their glasses full, it facilitates this all day and night without killing us.

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Photo of flagmantho
3.86/5  rDev 0%
look: 3.75 | smell: 4 | taste: 3.75 | feel: 3.75 | overall: 4

I had this beer on-tap in a big mug at Special Brews in Lynnwood, WA.

Appearance: pale orange hue with a dash of haze and a moderate effervescence. Head is a finger of frothy white foam. Not a bad looking session IPA.

Smell: rich, fruity, juicy hops that really do the trick. Tropical and enticing!

Taste: light malt base with a nice toastiness and a good fresh hop flavor. The nice tropical juiciness does not translate from the aroma into the flavor, sadly, but still it tastes pretty good.

Mouthfeel: medium body with a good carbonation and a decent creaminess. Not bad.

Overall: very drinkable and the aroma is wonderful. It makes up for the beer's other shortcomings in many ways.

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Photo of Urk1127
3.46/5  rDev -10.4%
look: 4 | smell: 3 | taste: 3.5 | feel: 4 | overall: 3.5

-Finger and half of head, golden orange color
-Light malts, buscuity, bitter vegetal hops
-Get a zip of bitterness from hops, light biscuit malt, vegetal like aftertaste
-Crisp, high carbonation

-good but not best session for me id say. Would buy again though.

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Photo of LiquidAmber
3.83/5  rDev -0.8%
look: 4 | smell: 4 | taste: 3.75 | feel: 3.75 | overall: 3.75

Poured into a Seattle Beer Week pint glass. Pours a clear, medium coppery amber with a half finger whtie head that dissipates to a thick cap with good lacing. Aroma of bready malt, grassy hops with light citrus, a hint of tropical fruit. Flavor follows, with mild bready malt, grassy hops with grapefruit and lemon citrus, light fruit. Finishes with a good grapefruit rind hop bitterness. Light bodied with active carbonation. A lot of hoppiness in this light pale ale, but surprisingly well supported by the mild malt. The malt is bit attenuated and left me wishing for more flavor and body; but considering the very low ABV, this is quite an achievement. Like all "session IPAs", left me wanting a full bodied IPA, but if I wanted this style, this would be at the top of the list. In the gray area between light IPAs and pale ale; I'd call it the latter, although it is robustly hopped.

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Photo of fank2788
3.64/5  rDev -5.7%
look: 3.75 | smell: 4 | taste: 3.5 | feel: 3.5 | overall: 3.5

12oz can served in a pint glass
Clear copper in color with a finger or so of white head that settles but laces during the session. The smell is quite nice as a mix of both floral or grassy hops with some lemony citrus in there as well. Not much of malt in the aroma and that carries over into the taste where the hops definitely take the lead. More of the floral hop flavor comes through than the citrus but there is some lemon pepper bite in there as well. Again the malts are quite light with just pales and no residual sugar or sweetness. Very light in body, almost too much in my opinion given some of the other session IPAs I've had in the past as comparisons but it is quite refreshing and easy to drink without lacking flavor. Overall this is good but as I mentioned there may be better more readily available session IPAs or APAs available.

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Photo of HopAlongG
4.5/5  rDev +16.6%
look: 4.5 | smell: 4.5 | taste: 4.5 | feel: 4.5 | overall: 4.5

Having tried most of the sessions out there this one stands out. Not sure how they pack this much delicious hoppiness into a 3.8% IPA but I don't really care. Perfect for summertime swilling when you're having a lot more than one. Usually squeeze a grapefruit sculpin in with them too.....which is even better.

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Photo of Ciocanelu
3.75/5  rDev -2.8%
look: 3.75 | smell: 3.75 | taste: 3.75 | feel: 3.75 | overall: 3.75

Clear orange color with white head. Aroma is really nice and hoppy fruity and herbal notes. Taste starts also hoppy with fruits, herbs and some resinous notes too. Finishes a bit abrupt, leaving only a slight lingering bitterness. Body is light and refreshing. For 3.8% ABV, this beer is pretty tasty.

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Photo of BeerDawgs
4.29/5  rDev +11.1%
look: 4.75 | smell: 4.5 | taste: 4.25 | feel: 3.75 | overall: 4.25

L - Bronze with a little bit of clarity. Huge 2 fingers of head. Sticky lace left all over the glass

S - Huge hop nose. Dry hopped for sure. Smells delicious. So far it looks and smells like a DIPA

T - Awesomely hoppy. One of the better session IPA's I have had. Definitely recommend

F - Light bodied and medium carbonation

O - Like any session, there is no maltiness to balance the brew out. If you swallow quickly, you can enjoy the tasty hoppy kick. Bonus is you don't get buzzed drinking this one. If thats what your looking for

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Photo of raiderandbeerfan
4.52/5  rDev +17.1%
look: 3.75 | smell: 4.75 | taste: 4.75 | feel: 4 | overall: 4.25

Mild yellow pour, heavy water content to it, mild thin white head 1/9" on the top. Smell is awesome. Massive double dose of dry hopping here. Extremely citrus and tropical fruity. Wowza.

Taste is excellent, elite 1st tier session ipa stuff. Right up there with alpha session and whatever Berryessa brewing calls their session ipa. Mouthfeel is good, but it is essentially hop water at this point. No malt aspect detectable really. This is what you want in the summertime on the golf course, at the beach, around the pool. It is a staple.

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Photo of Kurmaraja
4.21/5  rDev +9.1%
look: 4.5 | smell: 4 | taste: 4.25 | feel: 4.25 | overall: 4.25

A great looking beer with an orange / amber hue and abundant head. Nice lacing. Nose is grassy, leaves, freshly mowed lawn with grapefruit and orange pith. A slight graininess which is nice for a beer at such low abv. Taste bursts with pine, grassy, grapefruit. Clean and bright, nuanced bitterness throughout. Way crushable and delicious.

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Photo of JackieKu
3.81/5  rDev -1.3%
look: 3.5 | smell: 3.75 | taste: 3.75 | feel: 4 | overall: 4

12oz can.

A: Clear amber. The foam escaped from the can once opened, fortunately it stopped soon. There still a lot of foam after poured into glass.
S: Grassy and floral.
T: Grassy, some tangerine. Medium- bitterness. Quite dry.
M: Light bodied. Quite refreshing.
O: Well fitted the session IPA style, drinkable yet hoppy, best replacement of the bud.

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Photo of Tonyjenlasc
3.52/5  rDev -8.8%
look: 3.75 | smell: 3.5 | taste: 3.5 | feel: 3.5 | overall: 3.5

Grassy, herbaceous, citrusy, faint hints of tropicalness. Slightly bitter on the back end. Drinks well for only 3.8%. A decent session IPA but not my favorite.

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Photo of jngrizzaffi
4.38/5  rDev +13.5%
look: 5 | smell: 4.5 | taste: 4.25 | feel: 4.5 | overall: 4.25

Pours a clear amber color with a 2 finger width foamy head. Head retention and lacing are both excellent. Nice fresh, citrus, piney resin aroma. Strong resin. Maltiness is low but good with nice transition to a strong piney hop, ending in a grapefruit taste. There is a hint of lemon as well. Moderately astringent. Light bodied with moderate to heavy carbonation. This is one of my favorite session IPAs.

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Photo of dar482
3.69/5  rDev -4.4%
look: 3.75 | smell: 3.5 | taste: 3.75 | feel: 3.75 | overall: 3.75

The beer comes in a reddish amber.

The aroma offers grass, spicy hops, a light bready malt, honey, overly ripe tropical, lemon.

The flavor follows with some overripe tropical, almost like spoiled. A honey sweet bready malt in the middle, then onto a medium plus bitterness of lingering grassiness and herbaceous.

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Photo of biboergosum
4.04/5  rDev +4.7%
look: 4 | smell: 4.25 | taste: 4 | feel: 3.75 | overall: 4

12oz bottle, a very cool new brewery arrival in Alberta. 'San Diego Session Ale' probably means what I think it means.

This beer pours a clear, bright medium copper amber colour, with two fingers of puffy, loosely foamy, and well bubbly ecru head, which leaves a hanging band of dripping paint swath lace around the glass as it evenly subsides.

It smells of pungent red grapefruit, orange, and sweet lemon citrus, bready, grainy pale malt, a touch of caramel, some hard water flinty notes, a twinge of musty, dank pine resin, and further leafy, weedy, and floral hops. The taste is more mixed domestic citrus bowl fruitiness, a growing tropical sideshow, gritty pale and crackery caramel malt, muddled pine and its forest floor friends, a waning chalky character, and some airy floral bitterness.

The carbonation is fairly innocuous in its lightly-rendered frothiness, the body a so-so middleweight (which is way ahead of the curve for this off-shoot 'style'), with maybe a smidge of hop bitterness picking away at the otherwise standard smoothness. It finishes off-dry, a lingering graininess gamely parrying the still heady citrusy, piney, and floral hop contingent.

Well, disparage a new style, and soon enough, the pretenders fall away, and the big (craft) boys get it right - despite this one's low ABV, the malt and hops bring their A-game, and prove that it is indeed possible to go big, while at least paying lip service to balancing the hops, for a truly sessionable IPA offering.

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Even Keel Session IPA from Ballast Point Brewing Company
87 out of 100 based on 164 ratings.
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