IPA (aka Castle Rock IPA) | Santa Barbara Brewing Company

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Very Good
16 Ratings

Brewed by:
Santa Barbara Brewing Company
California, United States

Style: American IPA

Alcohol by volume (ABV): 8.00%

Availability: Year-round

Notes / Commercial Description:
No notes at this time.

Added by xlperro on 07-20-2003

This beer is retired; no longer brewed.

Bros Score:
User Ratings & Reviews
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Ratings: 16 |  Reviews: 11
Reviews by JayTheFinn:
Photo of JayTheFinn
3.6/5  rDev -9.8%
look: 4 | smell: 4 | taste: 3.5 | feel: 4 | overall: 3

This is the top of the hops at SB Brewing Co.

A - Orangy color with a nice off-white head with some staying power.
S - Very pronounced grapefruit scent.
T - Very bitey hops flavor. The grapefruit taste is there in the background.
M - Relatively full.
D - Too much hops and alcohol to give this a high drinkability rating IMO. But this is a great one-off drink if you want your tastebuds to do a little dance.

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More User Reviews:
Photo of brvosburg
4/5  rDev +0.3%

Photo of ucsbmullet
4.25/5  rDev +6.5%

Photo of hopsaplenty
4.45/5  rDev +11.5%
look: 4.5 | smell: 4.5 | taste: 4.5 | feel: 4 | overall: 4.5

The deep amber, ruby highlighted beer arrived topped with a modest head of fine, tan bubbles that left decent lacing as the glass was emptied. The smell is nice and hoppy, citrusy, and slightly fruity. The taste is filled with citrus rind bite, but there is ample malt to balance this, and it finishes with crisp, distinct hops that linger for a bit, but not too long. Relatively low carbonation and the medium body has a smooth mouthfeel. Nice and balanced, this is a highly drinkable beer.

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Photo of womencantsail
3.48/5  rDev -12.8%
look: 4 | smell: 3.5 | taste: 3.5 | feel: 4 | overall: 3

On-tap at SBBC

Pours a clear golden in color with a white head. A decent hoppiness, some citrus of grapefruit, orange peel, and tangerine. Some sweet bread and malt aromas. Fairly middle of the road as far as IPA aromas. The flavor is quite sweet with a lot of tangerine and candied orange peel. Sweet bready malt, and light grapefruit. A mild bitterness. Not bad, but not all that good of an IPA.

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Photo of Nhoelzen
3.94/5  rDev -1.3%
look: 4 | smell: 3.75 | taste: 4 | feel: 4 | overall: 4

Photo of HappyHourHero
3.95/5  rDev -1%
look: 4 | smell: 4 | taste: 4 | feel: 3.5 | overall: 4

Foamy, light cream colored sits atop the the hazy amber colored beer. A light grapefruity hop aroma eminated from the glass. The flavor was hoppy with a light nutty malt base. The bitter aftertaste came on quick but not overpowering, which makes for a surprisingly clean beer. The description says it was made with 30 pounds of hempseed and the IBU is 75.

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Photo of kojevergas
3.32/5  rDev -16.8%
look: 2.5 | smell: 3 | taste: 3.5 | feel: 3.5 | overall: 3.5

Reviewed from notes taken in October 2011, during my first (and likely only) visit to the brewpub.

Presentation: Served on-draught into a pilsner glass at Santa Barbara Brewing. Was labelled "India Pale Ale" on the beer board, not "IPA".

A: No head at all - it may have disappeared from the pour to my table. Colour is a semitransparent hazy caramel-copper.

Sm: Very hoppy. A touch floral. A standard IPA aroma. Moderate in strength.

T: Hoppy but not overly bitter. Floral and pleasant, with nice malts and barley covering up any potential overdone bitterness. Simply built, but well done for the style. I dig it, particularly its reverence for balance, which I don't often see in IPAs.

Mf: Smooth and wet, suiting the flavours of the body, and avoiding the pitfall of overdone coarseness often present in bad examples of the style.

Dr: Drinkable and pleasant, though a touch too bitter in the aftertaste. If I were here again, I'd likely order this again.

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Photo of TheLiterati
4.25/5  rDev +6.5%
look: 4.5 | smell: 4.5 | taste: 4 | feel: 4 | overall: 4.5

Ended up in Santa Barbara to support members of my marathon team at the city’s annual half marathon, and just had to stop by the SBBC to enjoy a Castle Rock IPA with lunch.

SBBC's IPA is one of my favorites of this style. Served in a pint glass from the tap. Beautiful, rich golden color with hints of amber and a creamy head. Nose is of citrus, woods, and flowers. And, oh, those hops! Definitely worth the hour and a half drive from the LA area!

Beautifully, bitterly hopped, just as I remember from my last visit. An excellent, solid representation of the style.

No bottles to go – I’d hoped so, too – unless you by a growler, which I did, and which stayed fresh for the four or so days it too shelf space in my fridge!

Quaffable, drinkable and enjoyable!

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Photo of Rumrunner
4.32/5  rDev +8.3%
look: 4 | smell: 4.5 | taste: 4.5 | feel: 4 | overall: 4

Pint glass. Name is Castle Rock IPA. Listed at 8% ABV on the chalk board at the Santa Barbara Brewing Company. The ABV may vary. On the printed beer menu it is listed at 6%.

Pours a bright deep amber. A tight bubbly head. Lacing down the glass. The head dissipates very slowly. Could smell this one while the glass was sitting on the bar. Huge hops. Very bitter on the nose. Heavy pine and sap. The malt is peeking through. This one is huge with the hops. Even after the beer is consumed the residual hops waft their way to the nostrils.

The hops again are at the forefront of this IPA. Pine and a syrup sap flavor. Some bitter rind start in the background but push themselves to the front. Some citrus here but the bitterness is prevalent and there is only a tiny hint of sweetness for some hop balance. There is a mild malt back bone which really helps this IPA. It smooths the flavors and allows one to enjoy the full spectrum of flavors from this IPA. It does leave a bitter aftertaste but for a hop lover that is not a problem.

The mouthfeel is bold in its initial offering but the poppy burn down the throat mellows and it becomes easy to accept. A few minutes of warming puts this IPA in its proper perspective. It drinks well but it definately makes its presence known. This is not a shy IPA. It gives a person a good smack in the palatte. Highly recommended.

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Photo of Callenak
4.77/5  rDev +19.5%
look: 4 | smell: 4.5 | taste: 5 | feel: 4.5 | overall: 5

This is a gem and definitely one of my favorite IPA's out there (therefore one of my favorite beers period). Well deserving of it's Gold at the Great American Beer Festival in 2005. Every time I'm in SB, it's a must to stop and grab a pitcher of this fine American IPA.

Pours an strong amber color, but who cares about the color, you drink this beer for the HOPS. A symphony to hops. Strong citrus/rind aromas and flavors. Floral flavors of fresh hops. No doubt this beer was dry hopped once or twice. Most likely a FWH too, even though I didn't get the bitterness normally associated with that.

Long story short, if you ever have a chance, grab a pint. You won't regret it. To bad, I don't think SB Brewing bottles, but I may be wrong. Just never seen one before.

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Photo of oggg
4.01/5  rDev +0.5%
look: 4.5 | smell: 3.5 | taste: 4 | feel: 4 | overall: 4.5

Pitcher from the tap at Pizza Port Solana Beach

This beer pours a gorgeous auburn red, brilliantly clear. There is a thick cake like foamy head that tastes of glorious hops. The aroma is a bit mild. The taste is all IPA. Intense hop flavors of rind and citrus surge with a strong hop bitterness. The bitterness is attenuated by a warming toasty malt backbone. Excellent. Even after the first 2 pints, the hop flavors were strong and tasty. Very green too. It was $2 pint $6 pitcher night for this beer, so maybe it was a fresh keg. Alcohol was not noticeable in the taste, but after 2 pints on an empty stomach I was painfreee.

Excellent IPA. Huge hop flavor and bitterness. At 8%, it could qualify as a lighter double IPA.

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Photo of DrewBeechum
3.7/5  rDev -7.3%
look: 3.5 | smell: 3.5 | taste: 4 | feel: 3.5 | overall: 3.5

Sold as the "Castle Rock IPA"

Served in a straight pint with no head and filled straight to the brim.

Hazy orange with a dark... No head.
Aroma is biscuity brown sugary malt and resiny pine hop aroma

Flavor is bright and agressively hoppy with a long burn down the throat with an orangey sugar caramel to the finish.

Not a bad beer, unfortunately I think both their XPA and DIPA are better brews.

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Photo of t0rin0
3.75/5  rDev -6%

Photo of BucannonXC5
4.12/5  rDev +3.3%
look: 4 | smell: 4.5 | taste: 4 | feel: 4 | overall: 4

Poured from a draft into a pint glass at Santa Barbara Brewing Company in Santa Barbara, Calif. Going with the “retired” Castle Rock IPA since it was only labeled “India Pale Ale” on the board. Going with what the last rated did. Anyway, the color was light caramel. Maybe an inch of head. Frosty film on the sides. Lasting lacing on the top.

Smelled of citrus hops, particularly lemon and grapefruit. Floral notes in there as well.

Pretty similar tastes to the nose. Citrus hops, lemon and grapefruit.

Medium body. Oily texture. Average carbonation. Bitter finish.

I really liked this beer. The smell was the best part, but it was an above average IPA for me.

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Photo of tgatort
4/5  rDev +0.3%

IPA (aka Castle Rock IPA) from Santa Barbara Brewing Company
Beer rating: 3.99 out of 5 with 16 ratings