Fathom India Pale Lager | Ballast Point Brewing Company

very good
145 Reviews
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Fathom India Pale LagerFathom India Pale Lager

Brewed by:
Ballast Point Brewing Company
California, United States

Style: American Double / Imperial Pilsner

Alcohol by volume (ABV): 7.00%

Availability: Rotating

Notes / Commercial Description:
No notes at this time.

Added by Floydster on 09-29-2007

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Reviews: 145 | Ratings: 854
Photo of ICMTM
4.73/5  rDev +21.6%
look: 5 | smell: 4.5 | taste: 4.75 | feel: 5 | overall: 4.75

A - Clear golden in a pint glass.

S - Hop aromas are present. The smell is not strong or overpowering. It's really like an IPA light.

T - Again the IPA light theme is what I'm going with. The flavor of the beer is hop forward with citrus and floral notes, but the finish is very clean and refreshing with little to no bitter.

M - Very light and refreshing. Drinks very easy and the alcohol presence is not there. Perfect for a hot day.

O - While I personally love hops I hate overly bitter beers. This gives me the best of both worlds. It's a hoppy beer for sure and I really enjoy it. The cost point is outstanding at $4.99 a bomber. It's not the easiest beer to find. I've had it both on tap and in the bottle and have never been disappointed.

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Photo of nanobrew
4.67/5  rDev +20.1%
look: 4.5 | smell: 5 | taste: 4.5 | feel: 5 | overall: 4.5

Pours a golden color, a little paler than an IPA, had a nice strong head. The nose is a lot of floral hops with no to little malt. The taste is great, it is a little lighter in maltiness than an IPA, very slight buttery. Has a great smoothness in the mouthfeel that I thought complimented the hops very well. I was glad I ordered this, I drank it while watching an evening football game, I can see doing this a lot, and ordering numerous of these in an evening.

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Photo of Boardshort_Brewer
4.51/5  rDev +15.9%
look: 4.75 | smell: 4.25 | taste: 4.5 | feel: 5 | overall: 4.5

Appearance - beautiful golden color, very clear with a nice white head and great lacing!
Smell - decent aroma of citrus and fruit hops. I do wish it was a bit stronger.
Taste - very clean and light to medium body, I love it. Great citrusy hop flavor with a balanced malt and bitterness that doesn't linger. All around just good!

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Photo of jtierney89
4.5/5  rDev +15.7%
look: 4.5 | smell: 4.5 | taste: 4.5 | feel: 4.5 | overall: 4.5

This thing smells fantastic. Clear deep golden color with about 3 fingers of super sticky white head. Perfect marriage of fruity citric and piney hop with clean herbal, earthy, and grainy scents on the nose.

Really really good. Bitterness isn't that of an IPA but hop flavors is. Beautiful ipa hop flavors with incredibly clean attributes, a crisp, solid and grainy malt bill. Sweet dry cereal grains up front followed by the faintest note of underlying fruitiness, big tropical fruit hop punch, citrus and grapefruit, touch of pineapple with a bit of pine. Finishes super clean with a resinous and drying bitterness. Medium bodied with brisk carbonation. This beer should be the epitome of this newly popular style. Delicious, clean, solid malt, bright hop, and balanced with lingering bitterness.

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Photo of Wasatch
4.49/5  rDev +15.4%
look: 4.25 | smell: 4.5 | taste: 4.5 | feel: 4.5 | overall: 4.5

22 oz. Bomber
FA 75 16158

Poured a pretty nice clean/clear dark golden orange/yellow color, pretty nice carbonation, with a pretty nice small creamy off-white head, which leaves some sticky lacing behind. The nose is malty, hoppy, with some citrus, sweet, slight pine note. The taste is hoppy, malty, with a nice touch of citrus and pine notes, nice sweetness. Medium body, ABV is hidden very well. Overall this is a very nice brew. I would not call it an AD/IP, it does not have that hotness/spicyness like most do. Job well done BP!

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Photo of HopHead84
4.47/5  rDev +14.9%
look: 4 | smell: 4.5 | taste: 4.5 | feel: 4.5 | overall: 4.5

Consumed on 08/19/2009 at Ballast Point Homebrew Mart. The beer appears golden and translucent with a frothy white head. Lacing is left clinging to the glass after the recession.

The nose is radical, with notes of resiny pine, succulent bitter grapefruit, orange pith, and tropical fruit. The hops also impart floral and grassy notes. The malt is very light, reminiscent of caramel and somewhat crackery. Hell of a nose. I would guess this is an IPA if I didn't know better.

The flavor is clean bitterness up front and throughout. My palate is overwhelmed with pine and grapefruit. Bitterness is at a medium level, with grassy notes. The light body and clean profile yeast serves as a sort of fantastic vehicle for the hop medley. I love it. The finish is dry with some tropical fruit.

The beer is light bodied with medium draft carbonation. The mouthfeel is dry and sticky. This is a hell of a beer, and I'd like to see more of this unique style.


Fresh batch tapped yesterday and enjoyed today at Old Grove. Outstanding beer and really nice batch. +.5 to mouthfeel.

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Photo of milwaukee512
4.45/5  rDev +14.4%
look: 4.5 | smell: 4.5 | taste: 4.5 | feel: 4 | overall: 4.5

Best IPL I've tried; that said, I just think there's something in the feel of IPLs that is inferior to their ale counterpart. As usual, Ballast Point brings flavor, balance, and quality that's tough to match. If you dig IPLs, this is probably as good as it gets.

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Photo of titty_mcbitty
4.45/5  rDev +14.4%
look: 4.5 | smell: 4.5 | taste: 4.5 | feel: 4.5 | overall: 4.25

A: Golden yellow with an awesome sizable white head. Lacing as well!

S: Aroma is pilsener malts, hops definitely, and some honey.

T: Same as the nose: pilsener malts, big strong hardy hops, honey bread, clove, and some orange peel. The after taste is amazingly refreshing!

M: Light to medium. It's got an almost perfect mouth feel. This is my second IPL as well as the best one I've ever had.

O: Was expecting something boring, but this is an excellent beer and I will be buying it again.

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Photo of Thorpe429
4.42/5  rDev +13.6%
look: 4 | smell: 4.5 | taste: 4.5 | feel: 4 | overall: 4.5

On tap at Ballast Point in August 2009.

Poured a nice golden color at the lighter end of the spectrum, but well within a lager's range. A nice white head on it. Smell is strong with hops--lots of pine and a bit of backing citrus and floral. Taste was nice and resiny with little malt backing. We had a few IPL's on the trip, and this one was right up there with Humulus from The Bruery. Nice mouthfeel and fantastic drinkability. This is an emerging style I'd like to see more of, and Ballast Point has absolutely nailed it.

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Photo of DeanMoriarty
4.42/5  rDev +13.6%
look: 4 | smell: 4.5 | taste: 4.5 | feel: 4 | overall: 4.5

Picked up a growler today from the Linda Vista Rd. location for $16 even and poured it into a Brouwerij 't Ij branded tulip glass.

side note: Ballast Point has this listed on their chalkboard as ABV: 7% - not 6.8% as listed above.

A: Pours a fairly clean straw-like hue with a decent sized white head that dissipates in a few sips leaving nice lacing in the glass from start to finish.

S: An amazing unison of lager malt and spicy hop up front in a major way - floral and grassy hop, fresh biscuit malt, herbal tea and a hint of booze.

T: Flavor is really on point with the nose but jacked up in every aspect - really dig the bold flavors representing a traditional pilsner - similar to Pilsner Urquell, Koutský, Budějovický Budvar, or the likes...at the same time though, representing fine IPA's - the likes of Sculpin, Pliny, Jetty, etc.

M: As with every other aspect of this beer the mouthfeel is big - full medium bodied, with good but not overwhelming carbonation, at moments sticky, but finishes dry with a lingering bitterness from the good amount of hop love in this one.

Overall one of my favorites from Ballast Point...and I truly wait for this one to pop up infrequently throughout the year - just went on tap yesterday at Ballast Point so I swooped this up today and it never disappoints - I love traditional Czech pilsners and Cali style IPA's and this has the both of best worlds in every aspect. Cheers!

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Photo of Brad007
4.38/5  rDev +12.6%
look: 4.5 | smell: 4 | taste: 4.5 | feel: 4.5 | overall: 4.5

Color is a cross of gold and blonde with a frothy head. I had read about this beer but this is my first time trying it.

Grapefruit and pine aromas spring forth followed by a clean malt base that compliments them. Smells much stronger than 7%.

The first sip brings forth those same grapefruit and pine hop flavors but after that, is nothing but a blank slate of clean, crisp malt. It differs from a few other offerings I've had and to be quite honest, I like this effort more.

The mouthfeel is clean and crisp as well. It's not muddled or full of alcohol heat like a few other offerings.

THE cleanest, tastiest example I've had of this stuff thus far.

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Photo of Floydster
4.38/5  rDev +12.6%
look: 4 | smell: 3.5 | taste: 5 | feel: 3 | overall: 5

100th beer on tap reviewed, had to be something special and this definitely was

Walked into the PB Tap Room and saw this, started talking to the bartneder about it and told me only a couple of kegs were made of this and they are the only bar in the area to get it, they do not even currently have growlers available of this at the Home Brew Mart supposedly

I had to try after hearing that

It is a 50/50 hybrid of an India Pale Ale and a light lager

Sounds weird, but tastes amazing

Pour a golden yellow color into a pint glass with a whopping white head on it, about an inch and a half

Small bubbles rushed to the top and the brew was very carbonated

Smell was like a Grolsch and was full of yeast, but then the taste was mainly an IPA with an even dryer finish

Could have drank these all day, but they had several other good taps yesterday

Beer was amazing, if you can down to Pacific Beach and try it, you will not be sorry

Congratulations Ballast Point on brewing this masterpeice

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Photo of thain709
4.37/5  rDev +12.3%
look: 4 | smell: 4.5 | taste: 4 | feel: 4.5 | overall: 5

A - The beer had a bright golden body with lots of carbonation racing to the top...the head was white and stood about two fingers...it slowly faded and left nice lacing

S - Lots of sweet and bitter hops...tropical fruits (pineapple, orange, mango, grapefruit), earthy, and piney

T - The first sip provides a rush of juicy tropical fruits...sweet, ripened fruits that just burts with flavor...that sweetness rolls right into a piney hop bitterness...but the two combine and leave a bittersweet finish...as the beer warms up the lager notes stand out...you can taste a little bit of yeast and bready malt

M - Medium bodied...juicy, nice carbonation, bittersweet finish that leaves you wanting more

D - Wow this one was very easy to drink...my first one went down rather quickly...I allowed the second one to warm up and that's when I found the lager characteristics coming out...I love the fresh, juicy, sweet tropical fruit flavors from the hops...I'd like to see more hoppy lagers or pilsners

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Photo of BearsOnAcid
4.35/5  rDev +11.8%
look: 4 | smell: 4 | taste: 4.5 | feel: 4.5 | overall: 4.5

Served to me with a 1.5 finger white head. Golden body with an average clarity.

Aroma is like sticking your nose in a fresh bag of columbus/cascade hop mixture. Really bright and citrusy with a little bit of grassiness.

Taste was a west coast hop bomb. Totally mangled my tasted buds. The beer opened up with pure hop flavor. Grassy, lemony, dank, and citrusy. Then came on a bitterness that could please any seasoned hop head. Crisp finish with some very slight toasty/bready malt. It's not really sweet at all, or at least I can't tell from the hop bite.

I can't believe the overall rating for this beer. I would take this any day over Sculpin. Maybe I just had a good batch. This beer is incredible. IPLs might be the next new craze.

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Photo of cxr1037
4.34/5  rDev +11.6%
look: 4.25 | smell: 4 | taste: 4.5 | feel: 4.25 | overall: 4.5

One of my favorites from Ballast Point. I've probably had Fathom more than any of their other brews.

From a 22 into a Bruery tulip.

APPEARANCE: Clear, glowing bronze. About a half inch of head.

AROMA: Right away, it smells like an IPA. Grapefruit and orange stand out, a little bit of pine, and faint cereal grain.

TASTE: I can really taste the Ahtanum hops, which are used in the dry-hopping of this beer. They're well-balanced with modest, sweet malts. Faintly grassy.

MOUTHFEEL: Low-medium body - lighter than anticipated given the ABV. Perfectly carbonated.

FINISH: Refreshing hints of bitter citrus and floral hops, and sweet malts.

OVERALL: This is my favorite IPL, and I think it's the best example of the style I've ever had (though I've only ever had one other IPL - The Bruery's Humulus Lager). Fathom is a great, refreshing beer that I highly recommend to anyone.


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Photo of LarryK
4.34/5  rDev +11.6%
look: 4.25 | smell: 4 | taste: 4.5 | feel: 4.25 | overall: 4.5

Appearance: Had on tap at Rattle N Hum in NYC. Pours a nice deep orange; looks nothing like a lager on first blush.

Smell: Aromatic of a floral/citrusy IPA, with a very small trace of lager coming through on the nose.

Taste: Tastes like an exceptionally hopped-up lager. Incredibly delicious and refreshing. Drinks quite crisply despite near-7% ABV. The only other beers I've had that tasted similar are Hoponius Union and Tired Hands' California Uber Helles.

Mouthfeel: Medium-bodied, medium-carbonation.

Overall: This is what lagers/imperial pilsners should taste like. Not sure I've ever had an imperial pilsner that balanced the enjoyable characteristics of a lager with an india pale ale this successfully. Just a delicious, refreshing beer.

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Photo of dfillius
4.31/5  rDev +10.8%
look: 5 | smell: 4 | taste: 4.5 | feel: 4.5 | overall: 4

Served in a pint glass. IPL...L? Enjoyed at Stone

A: 1 finger head subsides to 1/4 finger of generous white fluff. Crystal clear gold color. So clear! Definitely a lager.
S: Strong hops - cascade pine, fir needles, tiny malt character.
T: Bitter with clean malt backbone. Such clean taste, no fruity yeast easters as I would expect. Rather than fruit, breadiness comes out much more.
M: Crisp, a little fizzy, bitter.
D: Very high. This is higher in alcohol, but only feeling it rather than tasting it. Only lower points due to alcohol feeling. (Only 6.8% I see! It felt higher)

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Photo of smcolw
4.3/5  rDev +10.5%
look: 4.5 | smell: 4.5 | taste: 4.25 | feel: 4 | overall: 4.25

Very clear, light gold color. Solid and lasting head of two fingers. I pick up three rings of laces from the first three sips; some chunky spots in between.

I can smell the raw hop immediately upon opening the can. I'm shocked to get mostly caramel malt and cream on the initial smell from the glass. A third whiff brings a nice balance between the two, but it still leans to the malt.

Smooth round start of crystal and caramel (pils?) malts. The hop is mostly bitter and is light in the swallow but lingers well in the aftertaste. This is a very easy beer to drink with full flavors and nothing extreme. The body is rich, particularly for what I'd expect from a lager. This is exaggerated by the low carbonation level.

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Photo of woodychandler
4.29/5  rDev +10.3%
look: 4.5 | smell: 4.25 | taste: 4.5 | feel: 3.5 | overall: 4.25

Here is yet another beer that I got to try in beta, thanks to my cousin, Colby Chandler. This dates back to Philly Beer Week in 2012 or so when he was just branching out into lagers.

From the CAN: "Dedicated to the Craft"; "IPA-Style Lager"; "Lager Meets IPA in a Winning Combination"; "Our Fathom IPL combines time-honored lagering techniques with the hop profile of a San Diego IPA recipe. The cold-fermenting lager yeast provides a clean base that allows the citrus and pine aromas from the hops to really shine. The result is a gold medal beer with a refreshing, easy drinking character and just the right amount of depth."

I scored this CAN at Bistro on Bridge in Phoenixville this past week and I am anxious to take it for a taste drive! The Crack! was appropriately loud and I celebrated with an inverted Glug as a result. This netted three fingers of foamy, rocky, French Vanilla-colored head with great retention. Nose was filled with grapefruit citrus and my mouth was beginning to water. This is a lager?!? Color was a deep Yellow-Gold (SRM = 4 -5) with NE-quality clarity. My Gelt Gang pals of Midas, Mammon and Croesus showed up for their share, which was fine by me. My turn got me a light-bodied, but not watery, mouthfeel. The taste was hellbent on hops, citrus especially. Whoa! Again, revisiting the idea that this is a lager!?! I have to admit that I was not getting much in the way of pine, but this was as good as any AIPA. Finish was dry and I could really taste grapefruit well after the swallow. Quite a lager, but the hops ratio could use a slight tweak.

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Photo of magictrokini
4.27/5  rDev +9.8%
look: 3.5 | smell: 4 | taste: 4.5 | feel: 4 | overall: 4.5

Tap @ Hamilton's. This is not the first IPL I've had, but its definitely the best. Pours clear gold with a one-finger white head. Moderate lacing. Sweet, floral hop aroma. Lots of pine and lemongrass, less of the grapefruit/citrus. Sharp, crisp resin bite up front. Mellows a little into a grapefruit-lemon-orange peel sweetness. The lager back enhances the West Coast IPA feel, giving it a sweet finish. I could drink this all night its so smooth. Very well done.

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Photo of hopsputin
4.27/5  rDev +9.8%
look: 3.75 | smell: 3.5 | taste: 4.75 | feel: 4 | overall: 4.5

a: hazy golden yellow, with some darker amber hues in the middle of the glass. large 3 finger marshmallowy white head

s: bready right at the front of the nose. like toasted french bread, sweet orange and lemon, grapefruit rinds. the lager qualities add some nice sweet grassy aromas in here as well. finishes with a nice mix of sweet malt and that slight grapefruit bitter

t: toasted bread right at the front of the tongue. it then pops with some tropical fruit - mango, pineapple, and passion fruit. middle of the mouth you meet some sweet malt, earthy graininess, and lemongrass. finish is tropical fruit, cream soda, and fresh bread. the earthy/sweetness of the lager really balances out the bitterness nicely. every time it wants to tip to being real bitter, those nice lager qualities help to cut it and you're only hit with that fruity sweetness from the hops

m: medium mouthfeel (lighter than your used to something like this feeling) with nice fizzy carbonation helping to pop the flavors

o: this is my first IPL. after drinking, i can understand why this style is on the rise. the lager qualities harmonize with the hops to cut some bitterness and provide an extremely refreshing, clean, crisp, and juicy beer. definitely would recommend

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Photo of DarkSideOfTheMoon
4.27/5  rDev +9.8%
look: 4.5 | smell: 4.25 | taste: 4.25 | feel: 4.25 | overall: 4.25

Poured from a 22oz bottle into a keg glass (long story). Golden amber color with one or two finger foam head. Very inviting. Get the hops on the nose with a hint of the malt character underneath. Taste is strong hops at first but then gives way to bready malts at the end. Interesting and wouldn't turn this one down in the future.

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Photo of Eamonn-Cummings3
4.25/5  rDev +9.3%
look: 4.25 | smell: 4.25 | taste: 4.25 | feel: 4.25 | overall: 4.25

Look is incredibly clear with thick frothy head.

Smell is dank hops with a malt bite at the end.

Taste matches aroma. Malt backbone with wonderfully dank hops.

I'm gonna be honest I bought these cans for a party to only discover that they were pretty beat up. Cracked one open and am happy to say it tastes pretty good.

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Photo of elNopalero
4.25/5  rDev +9.3%
look: 4.25 | smell: 4.25 | taste: 4.25 | feel: 4.25 | overall: 4.25

A hoppy lager? Sign me up!

This pours a straw tan color.

The beer has a light almost-floral aroma. The hop profile has an orange-blossom character to it.

It’s pleasing, with a gentle crispness. Nice and easy going. I’d have another.

Another pleasing brew from Ballast Point.

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Photo of JG-90
4.22/5  rDev +8.5%
look: 4.25 | smell: 4 | taste: 4.25 | feel: 4.5 | overall: 4.25

Fathom IPL has a clear straw colored body with a dense moderate/large dirty tan head, has good retention and moderate/heavy lacing. Smells mostly of grass and floral hops, also has some straw/earthiness and citric hops, most noticably orange.

Taste starts with crisp bitter floral hops and grass, then bread orange and pine. Has a very floral earthy piney and minty finish with a bit of orange and straw. Has average body with a bit of chewiness, above average carbonation, very creamy and bready.

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Fathom India Pale Lager from Ballast Point Brewing Company
3.89 out of 5 based on 854 ratings.
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