Grapefruit Sculpin | Ballast Point Brewing Company

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795 Reviews
Grapefruit SculpinGrapefruit Sculpin

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:
Our Award-winning IPA, with a citrus twist.
Our Grapefruit Sculpin is the latest take on our signature IPA. Some may say there are few ways to improve Sculpin’s unique flavor, but the tart freshness of grapefruit perfectly complements our IPA’s citrusy hop character. Grapefruit’s a winter fruit, but this easy-drinking ale tastes like summer.

The Sculpin IPA is a testament to our humble beginnings as Home Brew Mart. It showcases bright flavors and aromas of apricot, peach, mango & lemon. The lighter body also brings out the crispness of the hops. The Sculpin fish has poisonous spikes on its fins that can give a strong sting. Ironically, the meat from a Sculpin fish is considered some of the tastiest. Something that has a sting but tastes great; sounds like a Ballast Point India Pale Ale. This version of our Sculpin IPA has grapefruit added; the grapefruit flavor really enhances the citrus aroma of the hops.

Added by arfenhouse on 01-19-2013

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Reviews: 795 | Ratings: 5,674
Photo of zshaft
3.89/5  rDev -9.3%
look: 4 | smell: 4.25 | taste: 3.75 | feel: 3.75 | overall: 3.75

I Like. this better than reg sculpin but overall this is grapefruit juice with a kick. good mouthfeel and overall a decent offering. better than the pineapple as well

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Photo of jasadewi
3.86/5  rDev -10%
look: 3 | smell: 3.75 | taste: 4.25 | feel: 3.25 | overall: 3.75

A: Clear golden color that had an orange tint in the light. Beautiful fluffy head and steady bubbling from below.
S: It smelled of hops, and clearly, of grapefruit. But, there were also notes of other citrus in there, such as tangerine.
T: Perfect balance of hops and citrus character. Slight crackerish malt, decent hop presence, and a strong and delicious amount of grapefruit flavor.
M: Light bodied and crisp.
O: Lovely beer, and I would highly recommend this beer as a champion among grapefruit IPAs.

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Photo of dsa7783
4.2/5  rDev -2.1%
look: 3.75 | smell: 4.25 | taste: 4.25 | feel: 4 | overall: 4.25

On tap at Verona Inn. An interesting rendition of the style given that the original Sculpin was such a hit. The grapefruit isn't as apparent as one might think, although the flavor is certainly enjoyable and thirst quenching. Citrus apparent throughout. Good stuff. Recommended.

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Photo of Blueowl
4.67/5  rDev +8.9%
look: 4.75 | smell: 4.5 | taste: 4.75 | feel: 4.5 | overall: 4.75

I had the opportunity to try this beer at a Seafood Restaurant: "Dead Eye Dick's" on Block Iland RI. it was an on tap version which frankly blew me away. What a tremendous beer! I subsequently bought a six pack, rather costly I might add and was somewhat dissapointed. All characteristics: color, appearance, foam, scent, etc. were essentially the same. However the taste was not. I preferred the on tap version as it revealed the balance of the grapefruit's acidity, sweetness, and bitterness all at once in a much more rapid manner. I thought perhaps it was because the tap version was slightly warmer when poured. So, I let the bottled version warm slightly but it still did not compare as well to that of the tap. I'm. Not disparaging this product at just stating a preference.

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Photo of brureview
4.5/5  rDev +4.9%
look: 4.5 | smell: 4.5 | taste: 4.5 | feel: 4.5 | overall: 4.5

In the past, the bottle dates in my area have been old for Sculpin. 8 months. A distributor problem,
I didn't think highly of the beer.

I bought a few cans of the Grapefruit Sculpin in Trader Joes. The BD is less than a month.

Okay- BIG difference.

I chose a Stone IPA glass which is similar to the glass Ballast Point uses in its pic.
It's interesting to note that if one searches images for a beer on Google, then click on a certain glass,
the review can help to decide which glass to choose. The DFH IPA glass got a so-so review. The Stone style IPA glass review was excellent.

Great pour. 3F head. Clear cider like color. Carbonation bubbles.

The aroma wasn't strong at first. Earthy, light citrus. Then, with warming, the flavors developed.
Rich citrus, grapefruit, sweet. It's unusual that an IPA aroma would develop so well with warming.

The taste is outstanding. The most balanced citrus taste in an IPA I can recall. Very complex.
Grapefruit, grapefruit rind. citrus, sweet, and tropical fruit.

Excellent finish- tingling, hoppy, and citrus.

I'm a convert. I didn't like the regular Sculpin in the past. BD's rule. Exceptional balance in flavor and palate,
I need to buy some more.

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Photo of TeamMathis
4.52/5  rDev +5.4%
look: 4.25 | smell: 4.75 | taste: 4.5 | feel: 4.25 | overall: 4.5

Might be the best smelling IPA I have ever tried. Chewy, sweet, massive grapefruit. Incredible. The same is true of the taste, with a bit of alcoholic burn at the end. Great brew.

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Photo of KTCamm
4.25/5  rDev -0.9%
look: 3.75 | smell: 4.25 | taste: 4.25 | feel: 4.5 | overall: 4.25

6/19...pours bright gold, very still. Fast, fizzy and settles out to almost nothing. Strong grapefruit nose, pulpy. Full juicy malt flavor, controlled by a grapefruit sharp bitterness. Chewy mouthfeel, residual bitter. Excellent.

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Photo of Boto
3.93/5  rDev -8.4%
look: 3.75 | smell: 3.75 | taste: 4 | feel: 4 | overall: 4

Draught @ Headkeeper: This one pours a cloudy golden color. There was a minimal white head and some lacing. The nose is mainly grapefruit. The taste isn’t overly bitter, but it has lots of grapefruit. A good malt body behind it.

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Photo of golf_sierra
4.35/5  rDev +1.4%
look: 4 | smell: 4.5 | taste: 4.5 | feel: 3.75 | overall: 4.25

Perfectly clear, medium light amber.
Aroma is strong with bright citrus.
Taste is of genuine grapefruit with hoppiness that adds complexity and finishes drier than many fruity style IPA's. No real malt character noted.
Mouthfeel is slick and carbonation is higher than expected.
Great IPA and I really enjoy the grapefruit flavor. Too expensive though.

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Photo of JimJencs
4.31/5  rDev +0.5%
look: 4.25 | smell: 4.5 | taste: 4.25 | feel: 4.25 | overall: 4.25

Poured out of a 12 ounce can. Evident from the start that this had a great color and aroma. Starts with a pleasant IPA flavor with an awesome grapefruit flavor. Excellent beer.

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Photo of jazzy_jay
4.18/5  rDev -2.6%
look: 4 | smell: 4 | taste: 4.25 | feel: 4.25 | overall: 4.25

Poured from a 12 oz can into a standard pint glass. Pours a golden amber color with lots of visible carbonation. Nose is grassy with lots of grapefruit. Taste is floral and fruity on the front, with a resiny but not overwhelming hop finish. Grapefruit is present but not excessively sweet. There is a lingering sweetness of melon/honey, most likely from the malts, though the beer could use a bolder malt profile IMO. Mouthfeel is crisp with vigorous though not strident carbonation. By the end, the hops have completely overpowered the fruit, and it tastes more like its resinous father, the original Sculpin.

I like this a lot as a fruit-centered east coast IPA. It is easy to drink and has a moderate alcohol content. The only thing that would prevent me from buying this again is the price ($18 for a 6-pack). Other beers in this style are much more accessible, cheaper, and brewed locally.

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Photo of MathChef
4.75/5  rDev +10.7%
look: 4.75 | smell: 4.75 | taste: 4.75 | feel: 4.75 | overall: 4.75

If money is no object, grab some of these. I think there's other beer that's just as good or better for less from little guy breweries that you won't find at every grocery store in the United States. Now that this is being produced by the same company that produces Corona, and the supply is virtually endless, the price should not be this high. How many years has that been said about Starbucks?... It is what it is.
Like many Starbucks beverages, this does not disappoint the mouth, only the wallet.
IPA's often suffer from a bitter, lingering, grapefruit pith bitterness. As the off flavors of a Chardonnay are transformed when drank along side a buttery dish, the grapefruit tames and enhances what was already a good IPA--Sculpin.

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Photo of TripleSun
4.48/5  rDev +4.4%
look: 4 | smell: 4.75 | taste: 4.5 | feel: 4 | overall: 4.5

L - Nice amber color with a moderate head
S - Very clean and aromatic of grapefruit and mango
T - Has a bitter grapefruit flavor that dominates but is very relaxing.
F - Nice carbonation and medium bodied. Not overly bitter but it does have a kick.

My first grapefruit IPA and don't think I've tasted any other IPA besides Stone Enjoy By Tangerine that labels as a specific fruit. Very tasty and refreshing on a summer day.

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Photo of Martin194
4.45/5  rDev +3.7%
look: 4.25 | smell: 4.75 | taste: 4.25 | feel: 4.5 | overall: 4.5

Look: Golden, honey-like; white head

Smell: Lots of grapefruit with hints of hops and pine

Taste: Grapefruit, lots of hops, leaves a bitter aftertaste

Feel: Sharp, seltzery. Leaves the mouth dry

Overall: A good fruit IPA, probably the best one I've tried

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Photo of heygeebee
4.6/5  rDev +7.2%
look: 4.5 | smell: 5 | taste: 4.5 | feel: 4.25 | overall: 4.5

Amazingly aromatic variation on an IPA base, delightfully full of grapefruit but also peach and mango notes. Nose is just sublime.
Nice to get fresh as well, makes a difference.

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Photo of laynethiele
3.77/5  rDev -12.1%
look: 4.5 | smell: 3.75 | taste: 3.5 | feel: 3.5 | overall: 4.25

For the price I paid for this IPA ($13), I would have been better off with the local Michigan IPA I was originally going to get (Short's Freedom of '78; collab beer). This beer I thought was very good, but 95?? 99?? No way! Too light and fruity for an American IPA. For the price, I will never buy this beer again. If I'm paying that kinda money for an IPA it better have more balls than this beer has! Good, but not great; especially for the money I paid here in Michigan. And if you're throwing fruit into a beer, you're probably not putting in enough hops to let them do the talking for themselves!

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Photo of Strike00
4.17/5  rDev -2.8%
look: 4.25 | smell: 4 | taste: 4.25 | feel: 4 | overall: 4.25

L: pours a nice medium golden amber, with a white head that lasts a while.
S: the smell is hops and citrus, definite Grapefruit
T: very good, hoppy citrus flavor with grapefruit that is not as strong as the smell
F: smooth with medium carbonation

O: Very good. Had it many time now just getting around to rating it. I don't think I rate it as highly as other people and typically look for other options because of the price point.

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Photo of Bruno74200
4.18/5  rDev -2.6%
look: 4.5 | smell: 4.5 | taste: 4 | feel: 4.25 | overall: 4

The smell makes you want more from the taste. It's much more complex. The taste Is all about grapefruit but the smell is about pine and caramel malt. Good bitterness and drinkability. It's clearly balanced even with the grapefruit addition but the original sculpin is definitely better

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Photo of hoppity
4.75/5  rDev +10.7%
look: 4.75 | smell: 4.75 | taste: 4.75 | feel: 4.75 | overall: 4.75

This is an exceptional beer especially on a warm day. I went into a local tavern about a year or so ago and they had it on tap and recommended it. The folks seemed like knowledgable persons, so I gave it a whirl. Note, I'm not usually one for beer with anything added (Rheinheitsgebot and all that). I hate it when Americans insist on applying a lemon to my Hefeweizen... Anyway, it was a hot afternoon and I went to the outside seating area to try it out. Wham! The perfect beer for me at that time and place and weather. Nice.

I like everything about this beer... nice nose (even if a bit intensely grapefruitish), excellent look and feel and a great balanced flavor.

Caveat - Not a brew I would drink a ton of, especially at 7% and at the price they are now charging. But, in the right place and the right context it's hard to beat for my palate at least.

Highly recommended.

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Photo of Gear54
3.83/5  rDev -10.7%
look: 4 | smell: 4 | taste: 3.75 | feel: 3.75 | overall: 3.75

In tap at the local Ale Emporium

Very light whispy white foam that faded quickly. Clear and golden in color with visible carbonation

Smell is hops and citrus with just a hint of grapefruit. Surprising that the grapefruit aroma doesn't dominate the profile the way pineapple does in the pineapple version of this beer.

Taste is heavy on citrus fruit. Not crazy heavy on the grapefruit. Plenty of hops to add bitterness.

Feel is light crisp and clean. Really easy drinking and super refreshing. High drinkability on this one.

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Photo of MaltyPythonsHopCircus
4.17/5  rDev -2.8%
look: 4 | smell: 4.5 | taste: 4 | feel: 4 | overall: 4.25

Didn't pour a very impressive head. Light and airy, dissipated quickly. Wonderful grapefruit nose and flavour but bitterness came in a bit cat pee like. Overall still a great beer

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Photo of Thawley
4.48/5  rDev +4.4%
look: 4.5 | smell: 4.5 | taste: 4.5 | feel: 4.25 | overall: 4.5

Tap WOB Arlington, Va. Ballast Point manages to walk the line between hops and fruit, the result is a remarkable beer. Light golden amber color and complex zesty lemon and grapefruit notes. This is a beer that you keep for yourself and share with no one.

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Photo of Ottoj55
3.48/5  rDev -18.9%
look: 3.5 | smell: 3 | taste: 3.75 | feel: 3.5 | overall: 3.5

Clear yellow, nice white head. Smells like grapefruit, up in your face grapefruit peels. Tastes like citrus hops, up in your mouth citrus hops. Feels light and crisp. What a mind screw, the aroma and taste are like two different beers to me.

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Photo of sjdevel
3.96/5  rDev -7.7%
look: 4.25 | smell: 3.75 | taste: 4 | feel: 4 | overall: 4

Look: 4.25
Light golden color. Decent carbonation / around 1-2 finger head. Crystal clear beer.

Smell: 3.75
Slight off aroma and quite funky. A bit malty and hop-citrusy.

Taste: 4.00
Not super bitter, but a bitterness is present. It kicks right into a pine and citrus blast. It starts to get pretty fruity and tastes like they dumped a few hundred boxes of Fruity Pebbles into the mash. There is quite a combination of flavors all mixed together. The bitterness/acidity backs off and the fruit flavors fade, and then you are left with some malt and bread.

Feel: 4
Feels a bit thin / light bodied. Was hoping for a bit more body. It flattens out quite a bit as you go.

Overall: 4
This is a decent brew. I bought as a single and not sure that I would have enjoyed a full 6 pack or not. It is an okay occasional beer, but not as a regular go to beer. It is unique though and interesting. More caramel and malt flavors would have been a bit better, and also would have liked more carbonation and body. But a good beer otherwise.

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Photo of Rock_Glenn
4.05/5  rDev -5.6%
look: 4.25 | smell: 4.25 | taste: 4 | feel: 3.75 | overall: 4

Supremely refreshing, this is a very cool take on an IPA. The citrus in the hops blends beautifully with the grapefruit added. It's a tad too fruity for my tastes, and generally I find it too light bodied, but on a hot summer day this one is hard to beat.

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Grapefruit Sculpin from Ballast Point Brewing Company
95 out of 100 based on 795 ratings.
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