Big Eye IPA | Ballast Point Brewing Company

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1,096 Reviews
Big Eye IPABig Eye IPA

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

Style: American IPA

Alcohol by volume (ABV): 7.00%

Availability: Year-round

Notes / Commercial Description:
No notes at this time.

Added by BeerAdvocate on 12-22-2000

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Reviews: 1,096 | Ratings: 4,210
Photo of BrewMaven
4.08/5  rDev +0.5%
look: 4 | smell: 4 | taste: 4.25 | feel: 3.75 | overall: 4

Wife came home with this in a mixer-sixer.

Nice rich looking amber in the glass with a receding, lace leaving head.

Nose full of hops on the sniff..just smelling this beer makes me want to wallow in it!

Very hop-forward American IPA..Lots of citrus...grapefuit and tangy orange. Malts are sub rosa and finish is more hops and somewhat dry.

Medium body..a bit sticky with moderate carbonation.

I really enjoyed this and will place it on my return to list!

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Photo of TheodorHerzl
4.42/5  rDev +8.9%
look: 4 | smell: 4.5 | taste: 4.5 | feel: 4 | overall: 4.5

Received from AndySR15. Thanks Andy.

Big Eye pours a nice rustic amber color with a good sized and slightly off-white head on it. It left spotty lacing on my pint glass. The smell is packed full citrus fruits with notes of oranges, tangerines, and lemon peel. There is some slight caramel notes coming out of the malt as well, but not well pronounced. I don't think I am giving the nose justice there, but this is complex and wonderful nose on this IPA. The scents leads right into the flavor profile with the bitter hops upfront flooding with flavors of grapefruit, pine needles, lemon zest, and finally the caramel soaked bready malt comes out in the finish. The flavors meld very well together and create a unique and balanced IPA for a hop-lover. I would think a non IPA drinker would find this offering quite harsh though, but not me. The mouthfeel has plenty of carbonation for this medium bodied beer that leaves no detectable alcohol in the finish. The drinkability for a hop lover is excellent and would also be quite session able at only six percent.

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Photo of kirkpjr
3.93/5  rDev -3.2%
look: 4.5 | smell: 4 | taste: 4 | feel: 4 | overall: 3.5

Poured into a nonic pint glass.

A: Pours a clear golden color with copper highlights. 3 full fingers of head gives way to chunky, thick sheets of lace.

S: Lots of citrus. Orange and lemon zest with some grapefruit. Fairly large sweet caramel malt mutes some of the hop character.

T: I wish these had dates on the bottle. Toffee and caramel make up the fairly strong malt overtones. Orange zest and some pine push through the malts to give a nice bitter bite.

M: Moderate, prickly carbonation and medium body. Resinous hop flavor.

D: Good, easy drinking IPA. A little malt-forward for my preferences.

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Photo of psuKinger
4.33/5  rDev +6.7%
look: 4.5 | smell: 4 | taste: 4.5 | feel: 4 | overall: 4.5

12 ounce bottle poured into my standard curved shaker pint glass. No freshness date that I can find on the bottle, so I'm forced to work under the assumption that this guy is *fresh*. Let's hope for the best. I've never had this beer before, so I have no frame of reference or former experience with this brew.

A: Pours a hazy-golden/light orange color with a thick, lively white head on top. Very nice.

As I worked through the bottle, this beer left great lacing on my glass.

S: Moderate smell of grapefruit hops, I can already tell this beer has some potential for me.

T: Very nice hop presence, with plenty of bitterness and grapefruit. This beer allows the malts to step out a briefly say "hello" at the start, before they are quickly pushed aside by a moderately strong hop bitterness/grapefruit finish, which swoop in quickly and dominate all the way to the finish.

This beer has a little more grapefruit and a little less *bitterness* than Stone IPA, but going from memory in many ways I find them to be fairly similar.

M: This beer is gently carbonated, with a nice hop-oiliness on the finish. It's consistency is a little lighter than normal.

D: High.

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Photo of Aenema
4/5  rDev -1.5%
look: 4 | smell: 4 | taste: 4 | feel: 4 | overall: 4

Appearance - Golden body with a beige foam head - splotchy lacing coats the sides.
Smell - Lots of floral and citrus notes.
Taste - Floral hop bite. Rich hop flavor.
Mouthfeel - Moderate carbonation, somewhat crisp. Medium-bodied.
Drinkability - Quite enjoyable and easy drinking for a beer with this flavor profile.

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Photo of mattsdenney
4.17/5  rDev +2.7%
look: 3.25 | smell: 3.75 | taste: 4.5 | feel: 4.25 | overall: 4.25

On draft at Rita's Folly Beach.

Light amber in color, clear, bubbly with little head. Strong hop presence, grassy, earthy, piney. Great hop flavor. Medium bodied, slightly dry, refreshing. Overall a solid ipa, very flavorful and drinkable. A solid ipa that is what you'd expect from the style.

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Photo of MiguelMandingo
4.13/5  rDev +1.7%
look: 4.5 | smell: 4 | taste: 4 | feel: 4 | overall: 4.5

Picked up a bottle from South Bay Drugs. Thanks Joey!

Poured 22oz bomber into a shaped pint glass

Appearance - Transparent golden copper orange. Constant strings of carbonation rise from the bottom of the glass. It produced a 1 1/2 finger, white foamy head that slowly dissipates to a thin crown. Nice bit of lacing is left behind. Good looking beer.

Smell - Great hop aroma from this one. Very floral, tropical and citrusy - lemon and grapefruit rind, all with a hint of pine. Very resinous. There is a nice malty undertone, caramel-like and sweet. A really great scent on this one.

Taste - Crackery and caramel-like malts show up in the initial flavor, intermingled with a honey-esque sweetness that gives way to a great hop flavor. Citrusy orange, lemon, and grapefruit rind hop flavor take over, and leads into grapefruit and pine-like hop bitterness.

Mouthfeel - This beer feels pretty good going down - slick and oily as it runs over the tongue. The carbonation level is just where I like it to be, a nice moderate level. It provides just enough of a prickly sensation on the tongue to keeps things interesting.

Drinkability - This is a pretty damn good beer. Ballast Point has never disappointed me. It is easy to drink, smells great, and tastes pretty good. Its too bad that they don't distribute out here in Texas.

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Photo of SamuelJackson45
4.12/5  rDev +1.5%
look: 4 | smell: 4.5 | taste: 4 | feel: 4 | overall: 4

A- Bright orange look

S- smell citrus and hops.

T- A strong bite of hops and citrus tones very balance.

M- Semi-dry hop bite and citrus notes through out the sip.

D- Very good ipa not like it's big brother Sculpin but still a good IPA.


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Photo of Vendetta
3.44/5  rDev -15.3%
look: 3 | smell: 4 | taste: 4 | feel: 3 | overall: 2

Original Rating Date:
September 27, 2008

Pours cloudy orange with a very thin, soapy head. Strong, grassy hops pours from the bottle on opening and the glass on the pour. Super big hop bitterness punch. The Ratebeer profile says 55 IBUs but it tastes waaayyyy stronger which leads me to doubt that measurement. Strong, unbalanced hop flavor, fabulous for hop heads. A must try for IPA fans.

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Photo of Mississipping
3.88/5  rDev -4.4%
look: 4.5 | smell: 4 | taste: 3.5 | feel: 4.5 | overall: 4

12oz poured into a tulip:

A: Pours a slightly hazy golden amber color with a large off-white, sticky head that dissipates slowly and settles to a sticky foam, leaving behind decent lacing.

S: The initial smell is flora and fruity ... citrusy and somewhat sweet ... and also quite malty. Just a bit of hops and booze behind the sweeter start.

T: Sweet orange and tangerine, with a bready/biscuity malt profile dominate. Starts less sweet than the smell would have you believe. Taste transitions quickly to bitter grapefruit, grass, and pine, along with the hoppieness. Just a hint of booze. Bitter, hoppy, pine finish that lingers. While it's all there, it seems a little muted; less aggressive.

M: Slightly thicker mouthfeel than some other IPAs. A bit resiny, yet still bubbly and lively on the tongue. Medium level of carbonation which complements the stickiness quite well. Slightly drying effect at the finish, but not overwhelming.

D: Drinkability is high ... alcohol is hidden fairly well, mouthfeel is great, and the flavors are a little mild. Less to appreciate here so it goes down very quickly. Still recommended.

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Photo of ahq514
3.91/5  rDev -3.7%
look: 4.5 | smell: 3.5 | taste: 4 | feel: 4 | overall: 4

Poured from 12 oz bottle into tulip.

Pours a dark golden color that is slightly clear. A little over a finger white head. Seems to have moderate carbonation. Gobs of lacing.

Hop aromas are loaded wirh floral, piney notes, with a light citrus touch. Lingering behind the hops is a nice caramel malt backbone.

Spicy, piney hops dominate the palate right up front, followed by a quick appearance of grapefruit hops. Next comes a little bit of sweet malt. The finish is mostly bitter hops.

Medium body and moderate carbonation. Average drinkability.

A good ipa, but not well balanced enough in my opinion. Needs more malt to balance out the bitterness of the hops. Other than that, its a very solid beer. Prefer sculpin.

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Photo of HopHeadRyan
3.93/5  rDev -3.2%
look: 4.5 | smell: 4 | taste: 4 | feel: 4 | overall: 3.5

A - Crystal clear orange-amber, decent head and lacing

S - Definite citrus, pine, and an apparent tuti-fruity bubblegum aroma (in a good way); a very subtle malt-grain aroma in the background

T - Grapefruit bitterness nearly countered by a sweet caramel malt character; the hops win though as the bitterness lingers in the best possible way

M - Smooth carbonation, tiny bubbles, doesn't interrupt the flavors and enhances the aromas

Overall - One of my favorite go to IPAs...makes me wish I lived near the brewery so I could have it fresh from the tap any day of the week. Definitely one of my top 10 regularly available American IPAs. Give Big EYE a try!


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Photo of Cannibalgasm
4.05/5  rDev -0.2%
look: 3.75 | smell: 3.75 | taste: 4.25 | feel: 4.25 | overall: 4

Poured from a 12oz. bottle.

A: Pours a deep amber with one finger of white head. Head fades rather quickly to a thin layer that rests atop the brew, also leaves behind some nice lacing.

S: Citrus, tropical fruit, bready malts, caramel, pine, and earthy hop grass like aromas.

T: Caramel, bready malts, pine, of resiny hops up front, then some lemony citrus, earthy hops, and a slight buttery tone with a great bitterness on the finish.

M: Medium bodied, moderately carbonated, smooth and slightly creamy. The resiny bitterness lingers around for awhile.

O: This is a great beer through and through. It gets lost in the shuffle of great IPA's considering the juggernaut of an IPA also brewed by Ballast Point. While it may not be as mind blowing as Sculpin it is still a great beer and deserves some love.

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Photo of ryrust5301
4.35/5  rDev +7.1%
look: 4.5 | smell: 4.5 | taste: 4 | feel: 4 | overall: 5

Appearance - A pretty beer. Dark gold with a hazy orange fading in from the back. Head was a thin off white ring on the top.

Smell - You can't get much better than the nose that this beer offers. Bursting with hops and a sweet honey, it blends well with the citrus fruit and melon that can be picked up in the background.

Taste & Mouthfeel - Falls a little short from what the nose offered up. Hops are not as big as I originally thought, but if you like more citrus fruit in you beer, then this is the one for you. Tons of orange, grapefruit, and melon attack the tastebuds. Wonderful honey sweetness levels things out, but it doesn't help calm what seems like an overly bitter taste. Feel can be a little harsh at times, but does soften up when it needs to.

Drinkability - I was pleasantly surprised at that depth of this ipa. Even though it was bursting with flavor it seemed just a touch off in some places. Still a great ipa for sure.

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Photo of Trueant1
4.12/5  rDev +1.5%
look: 4 | smell: 4.5 | taste: 4 | feel: 4 | overall: 4

Pours a nice orange color with a thick rocky two inch head that stays around. No carbonation seen and a clear beer.
Smells of pine hops with warm alcohol. Also smelled pineapple and citrus and nice sweet carmel.
Pine resin, and oil taste. Some citrus and sweets come through.
Bitter hops remain for a while on the aftertaste.
Oily, resins, and a bitter mouthfeel.
I like the design on this bottle..a big collector one for me.
The beer seemed a little two one sided for me. Just my personal taste. The pine/oil hops were just a little to much for me..but i still know this is a good beer.

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Photo of colforbin73
4.25/5  rDev +4.7%
look: 4 | smell: 4 | taste: 4.5 | feel: 4.5 | overall: 4

outstanding west coast IPA. silky smooth -- oily... barrel-aged taste.

pours a nice medium amber... with a head that reduces fast to a thin white glaze... but this is a rich beer, and takes its time in the glass, sticky and thick. solid aromas of fresh hops are followed by a sweet, resinous first drink -- the texture is excellent -- smooth drinking, oily, packed with flavor. citrusy and wet -- this is not a DRY ipa -- the finish is leathery, oakey.... spicey hops and sweet malt linger on the palate.

excellent IPA.

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Photo of Emersonio
3.9/5  rDev -3.9%
look: 4 | smell: 4 | taste: 3.75 | feel: 4 | overall: 4

Pour: 12oz bottle into a nonic pint. Appearance: Deep amber with a thick white head. Aroma: Grassy and hoppy notes. Taste: Big and bold hop flavors upfront. Aftertaste: Slightly peppery with a hoppy bite. Overall: Solid and consistent offering. Very good: 4 out of 5.

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Photo of ramseye4
4.08/5  rDev +0.5%
look: 4.5 | smell: 4 | taste: 4 | feel: 4.5 | overall: 4

So Ballast Point magically appeared in the area I live in recently, and I for one could not be happier! If only I could dig up some sculpin around here...anyway, onto the review.
A= Great looking bottle, which a giant tuna fish on it. Ballast point has some of my favorite labels out there. Pours a copper golden color with a one finger head that doesn't linger. Good lacing, though.
S=Citrussy hops and lemon zest
T=Citrus hops and a well balanced malt backbone, the taste feels almost "prickly" across the tongue, to borrow the term from the Alstrom brothers. Great bitterness in the aftertaste
M=Highly carbonated and full bodied.
O=Outstanding. Ballast point is quickly becoming a favorite of mine.

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

A: copper color off white head sticky lace and good head retention

S: hoppy hoppy grapefruit and orange peel

T: citrus orange peel grapefruit I love centennial hops!

M: med mouth med carbonation

D: very drinkable here!

overall: very tasty solid IPA I have enjoyed this for many years it was my 2nd IPA I ever tasted and still a good one!

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Photo of Smak_Hermann
3.82/5  rDev -5.9%
look: 4.5 | smell: 3.75 | taste: 3.75 | feel: 4 | overall: 3.75

Nice looking head, lacing and carbonation. Smell and taste complex, early and lingering bitterness that doesn't suit my taste buds. Great feel but overall not one of my favorite IPAs.

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Photo of bcm119
3.42/5  rDev -15.8%
look: 3 | smell: 3.5 | taste: 3.5 | feel: 4 | overall: 3

Tasted blind along with 5 other California IPAs: Lagunitas, Drakes, Anderson Valley, Stone, and Racer 5.

Thinnest head of the bunch. Aroma is candied tropical fruit. Nose is sweet, dark fruity malt followed by a surge of juicy citrus hops mid palate. Coarse, damp grain malt bill. Medium body- heavy for the style- with oily, coating hops towards the finish that leave a juicy orange aftertaste. Juicy fruit is almost bubblegummy and not very refreshing.

Overall this IPA is a bit of a blundering mess-- too sweet and slightly cloying. It is neither clean nor crisp, and there seems to be an overabundance of finishing hops and not enough bittering hops. Least favorite in the blind tasting.

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Photo of titty_mcbitty
3.97/5  rDev -2.2%
look: 4 | smell: 3.75 | taste: 4 | feel: 4.25 | overall: 4

A: Golden yellow and pretty clear. White head.

S: Floral hops, pine, orange.

T: Forewarning: I do like IPAs, but I am not a huge fan particularly. I will try to be as unbiased as possible. I get orange peel, pine, lemon grass, some malt, floral hops, and a nice spice on the back.

M: Medium-light. Very nice actually.

O: For an IPA, this is very good. Like I said: I am not a huge fan of IPAs. This was a refreshing beer and it was very well put together.

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Photo of LtCracker20
3.8/5  rDev -6.4%
look: 4 | smell: 4 | taste: 3.5 | feel: 4 | overall: 4

A- Pours a clear amber with a 2-finger white head with OK retention, when it falls, it falls to a thin cap. Very sticky lace all around.

S- Citrus and piney hops. Slight medicinal aroma. Pineapple comes through most with a little sweetness.

T- Overly sweet at first followed by bitter hops. Small citrus punch but mostly bitter pine in the finish. I love hops, but this was a little too bitter, and I never thought that would be possible, in my opinion.

MF- Just a little thick but with good carbonation levels.

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Photo of GarrettMD
3.91/5  rDev -3.7%
look: 4.5 | smell: 3.5 | taste: 4 | feel: 4 | overall: 4

A - So much better than Sculpin as far as appearance. Light amber hue with half a finger eggshell white head that stays around.

S - Malt aroma melds with the earthy hops. Not too much hop aroma, maybe some hints of citrus, but not what you would expect from a west coast IPA

T - Malts still dominate, but hops are more present. Citrus hops are the main flavor, mainly grapefruit. Some slight earthy pine hops as well, but not too noticeable. Very sweet tasting, almost too sweet, but still slightly balanced.

M - Medium, slick body. Sticks slightly to your mouth. Good carbonation. Finish is sweet, sticky, and a very late bitterness. Bitter pine hops show up well after the sweetness fades away.

D - Very drinkable. Sweet, but not too sweet. I definitely want to keep going back for more. I almost feel that if you combine this beer with sculpin, you would have one of the best IPAs. All of the strengths in this beer are the faults in Sculpin.

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Photo of BTodd
3.71/5  rDev -8.6%
look: 3.5 | smell: 3.75 | taste: 3.75 | feel: 3.5 | overall: 3.75

12 oz. bottle poured into a pint glass.

A-Pours a clear, gold/amber with less than a finger of fine bubbles.

S-pine, citrus with some floral notes as well.

T-reflective of smell with some spiciness. Nice bitterness with some of the hop characteristics shining through. Maybe some biscuit as well.

M-Fairly light. Nice carbonation. Fades pretty quickly. Easy drinker.

O-A nice IPA that is not quite as complex or powerful as those I like a little more. However, it's a nice drinker and I will buy it from time to time.

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Big Eye IPA from Ballast Point Brewing Company
91 out of 100 based on 1,096 ratings.
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