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Inside Passage Ale | Boundary Bay Brewery & Bistro

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very good
48 Reviews
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Brewed by:
Boundary Bay Brewery & Bistro
Washington, United States

Style: American IPA

Alcohol by volume (ABV): 6.40%

Availability: Year-round

Notes / Commercial Description:
No notes at this time.

Added by BeerAdvocate on 04-20-2003

For Trade:
User Reviews
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Reviews: 48 | Ratings: 61
Reviews by blackc5:
Photo of blackc5
4.35/5  rDev +10.1%
look: 4.5 | smell: 4.5 | taste: 4.5 | feel: 4 | overall: 4

A great northwest IPA - exactly what you would hope for. Great hop aromas - citrus, herbal, flowery and bitter notes right in the nose. Pours a perfect deep gold honey color with a nice head and truly great lacing.

Taste is what you would expect for a northwest IPA - even moreso. Lots and lots of hops - herbal, citrus (lemon and grapefruit zest in particular), and nicely bitter with just a 'touch' of malt to balance it all out. Very, very nice.

Mouthfeel is smooth and robust - thick. Drinkability - well, to me this almost feels and tastes like a DIPA. Not sure of the abv, but I am guessing it is on the high side for a IPA.

Overall, just a great, great brew and one I look forward to seeing on tap again.

 716 characters

More User Reviews:
Photo of oberon
4.03/5  rDev +2%
look: 4.5 | smell: 4 | taste: 4 | feel: 4 | overall: 4

Poured into an imperial nonic a burned orange infused copper color with a fluffy two finger white head that left multiple rings of lace behind as it settles oh so slowly into a frothy mass.Apricot and grapefruit hop dominate the aromas with caramel/biscuit underneath,pretty well balanced with generous citrus hop flavors melding with a big sweet caramel base.Another solid Washington IPA,highly drinkable with good hop complexity.

 431 characters

Photo of RoyalT
4.5/5  rDev +13.9%
look: 4.5 | smell: 4.5 | taste: 4.5 | feel: 4.5 | overall: 4.5

Appearance – This beer came out of the tap a thick, deep, rich orange in color with a terrific off-white head. The head showed a lot of retention even in my four ounce “tasting mug.”

Smell – This is classic PacNW. The citrus aroma is big, but it’s the straight pine resin that leads the way. There are some light caramel-laden malts in the nose but this one is all about the hops.

Taste – The big pine resin just tromps at the taste. The malts are light and try their best to give this beer a solid, balanced backbone, but it’s a lost cause.

Mouthfeel – This is somewhere between medium and full in the body. The IBUs have to be gi-normous, because this brew is super-bitter and bone dry.

Drinkability – This is a hard core American IPA with true PacNW roots.

Comments – I had this at the 2005 Hops on Equinox festival in Seattle. The festival itself was kind of a bust, but this IPA was kick ass!

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Photo of Beerandraiderfan
3.9/5  rDev -1.3%
look: 4 | smell: 4 | taste: 3.75 | feel: 4 | overall: 4

A pretty standard ipa on the good side, copper color, a little bit of haze, I should say dark copper, this had some brown running around in it. Aroma was nice, not over the top.

Grapefruit and lemon aroma. Taste, sturdy, well hopped, drank it over a month after purchase, so it gets an added bonus as not being the kind of ipa that will degrade quickly. Lots of caramel. Hops seem to be of the cascade and centennial sort. Straight forward hoppy beer.

$4 a bomber is a steal. Doubt it will become anyone's favorite beer, but it is a solid standby, kind of reminds me of a pitcher who might be #3 or 4 in a rotation . . . yeah, he's not your ace, but this guy is dependable and will eat up some innings and not kill your wallet.

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Photo of glid02
4.05/5  rDev +2.5%
look: 4 | smell: 4 | taste: 4 | feel: 4.5 | overall: 4

Growler via trade with barleywinefiend - thanks!

Pours an almost opaque copper color with a half-finger slightly off-white head. The head recedes into a wispy layer on top leaving decent lacing.

Smells of grainy caramel malts with good amounts of bitter pine hop aromas. It smells like a light barleywine until it warms up when the malt aromas sweeten and slight tropical fruit and heavier herbal hop aromas come into play.

Tastes very similar to how it smells. Fairly dry caramel malt flavors with hints of lightly sweetened toffee kick things off. Joining in shortly thereafter are large amounts of pine hop flavors. Midway through the sip the flavor profile turns decidedly bitter and intensifies through to a solidly bitter ending. As with the smell, the malt flavors sweeten as the beer warms and slight amounts of tropical fruit hops make brief appearances as well.

Mouthfeel is very good. It's got a smooth thickness with grainy carbonation.

Drinkability is good. I finished my glass without any problems and could have another.

Overall I wasn't the biggest fan of this beer at the outset but as it had a chance to warm it came into its own. Worth a shot.

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Photo of mdaschaf
3.89/5  rDev -1.5%
look: 4 | smell: 3.75 | taste: 4 | feel: 4 | overall: 3.75

Photo of Metalmonk
4.38/5  rDev +10.9%
look: 4.5 | smell: 4 | taste: 4.5 | feel: 4.5 | overall: 4.5

Came to the table an earthy, hazy deep blood-orange with a super-creamy head. Thick lace sheets are left behind as the liquid disappears, but the head itself never entirely diminishes.

The nose is given flowery hops with a little grapefruit. No surprises, but very much a clean, fragrant, pleasing aroma.

Flavor pretty much has it all--piney and resiny, rind-like and citrusy, though balanced and kept from veering too far one way or the other. Grapefruit flesh lingers in the finish. Malt is there, but does its job obediently, propping up and balancing in service to the hop gods.

Has a creeeaamy mouth, full, round and smooth. Excellent.

Everybody's got their own take on the IPA now, just as everyone and their brother had their own pale ale a few years back. Mediocrity is inevitable in such a case, but Inside Passage Ale rises far above the norm. Gotta be one of the best IPAs in the Pacific Northwest, and that's no mean feat. Seek it out.

 951 characters

Photo of dirtylou
4.27/5  rDev +8.1%
look: 4 | smell: 4.5 | taste: 4 | feel: 4.5 | overall: 4.5

on tap at the Virginia Inn in Seattle - glad to see some Boundary Bay available

appearance: served in a pint glass, copper amber body with some sticky beige foam and decent retention

smell: zesty hops - citrus and pine...northwest hops in abundance

taste: This IPA has a nice piney character with some zesty citrus and lemon hops...mild malt base

mouthfeel: medium-smooth body, nice

drinkability: great

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Photo of eallured
4.82/5  rDev +22%
look: 4.5 | smell: 5 | taste: 5 | feel: 4.5 | overall: 4.5

Having probably consumed kegs worth of this stuff in my time, I had to review when I saw there were less than 30 reviews of this. Regrettably this is from memory and it has been a few months since I have had the pleasure of having this bew fill my glass.
Pours deep golden, hazy and with rich, slightly off white head. Very hoppy aroma, grapefruit and pine dominate but other citrus and melon comes through. It grabs the nose and gives it a slice of what's coming.
Bitterness predominates but there is enough caramel and richness to come through quite noticeably. A full flavored ale to be sure, the piney slightly raspy hops lingering and contributing lots of volatile AAs and late & dry hop character in the heady style of the PNW.
At 7.2% this guy is far from fully attenuated but it is neccessay to provide this amount of flavor. A delightfully rich expeience throughout, medium carbonation break size and amount on swirling. Coats the tongue but doesn't cloy due to the hoppiness.
This was my go to beer when no specialty ipas were on tap and I was in a drinking mood. Having has a keg of it on tap, I would say it is very drinkable beer.

 1,144 characters

Photo of HouvilleSwamp
4/5  rDev +1.3%

Photo of Rutager
4.42/5  rDev +11.9%
look: 4 | smell: 4.5 | taste: 4.5 | feel: 4 | overall: 4.5

Appearance. Pours a nearly clear gold-amber with a finger of sticky, thick white head.

Smell. Sweet caramel, peaches, pineapple and grapefruit. A little pine sap in there.

Taste. Toasty grains, pine sap and yellow grapefruit rind. A little orange too. Lasting piney, citrus rind bitterness.

Mouthfeel. Lighter than medium in body with medium carbonation.

Overall. Great ipa. Balanced pretty nicely with great tasting malts and hops.

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Photo of boogyman
4.28/5  rDev +8.4%
look: 5 | smell: 4.5 | taste: 4 | feel: 4 | overall: 4.5

A- This is the first time I have had this from the bottle. Beautiful copper color with a finger of head poured into my tulip glass. Head is eggshell white and stays around and you can see that it is constantly fueled by bubbles coming from the bottom. Laing is super sticky. Leaving solid lace down the glass, in some parts there is not even any holes, just a solid wall of bubbles, quite awesome looking.

S- Smell is very much like a lot of good northwest/west coast IPAs and double IPAs. Very fruity in the nose. A lot of citrus like pineapple, grapefruit, lemon and orange peel. Very fresh. One of the best noses from any IPA I have had.

T- Amazing. Taste has the noses smells all over it. Loads of citric fruit but this definitely stands out as a true northwest IPA as apposed to a double IPA, which is not what I was expecting. I thought it was gonna weigh heavy on the hops ala a double IPA but instead I get a good dose of malt. Like maybe some caramel malt or something. Overall a very awesome taste.

M- Very tingly going over the tongue. Goes down with a decent bite that reminds you that you're drinking a good IPA. No alcohol bite to speak of, but not too surprising given the less then 7% ABV.

D- Very high drinkability. I could have this all night no problem. Go get some if your in the northwest, its damn good.

 1,329 characters

Photo of carln26
4.55/5  rDev +15.2%
look: 4.5 | smell: 4.5 | taste: 5 | feel: 4 | overall: 4

I had this beer straight from the source at the Boundary Bay Brewing Co. It poured a bright and clear copper color topped by a light cream colored head with not much lace. Wonderful citrus aroma. Grapefruit and pine. A little mowed hay. The flavor has loads of citrus, more pine. Nice malt sweetness with just a touch of caramel. Sharp bitter finish. Slick mouthfeel wonderful beer. One of my favorite IPAs.

 407 characters

Photo of Globetrotter
3.86/5  rDev -2.3%
look: 4.5 | smell: 3.5 | taste: 4 | feel: 3.5 | overall: 4

Sampled at the Elephant and Castle in Seattle in mid-June. Came out cloudy gold with a one finger white head that lingered well and left very nice lacing. There is a fair hoppy nose, hardly overpowering. The mouth is very prickly and quite light. There are lots of crisp - I think Cascades - hops with a slightly fruity tinge. A hard espresso-like bite follows, leaving a very long-lasting bitter aftertaste. Don't bother looking for malts here, but it's a pleasant enough drinking brew.

 487 characters

Photo of IBUnit63
3.73/5  rDev -5.6%
look: 4.5 | smell: 4 | taste: 3.5 | feel: 4 | overall: 3.5

Courtesy of trade #2 with googzoid10 - awesome extras! Poured into the Sam Adams "perfect pint" glass. This says "IPA" and "India Pale Ale;" from the comments of earlier reviews am taking a flyer that it's updated packaging of their India Passage Ale.

Slightly aggressive pour of this 22 oz. bomber yields a pretty gelatinous 1 ½-finger bready eggshell-colored head - maybe with some muffin tunnels even. Retention is extremely solid - lacing forms pretty nicely too. Carbonation is prevalent but struggles slowly up the viscous honey body. Looks like a big IPA should.

This is a pretty well-balanced IPA...balanced in moderate abundance. There is indeed some mellow caramel/butterscotch malt but it's balanced with a nice mild scent of grapefruit citrus. A bit of viscous, velvety booziness rounds out the flavor profile.

This is more quenching than anticipated due to the perceived thickness of body and malt (and booze). The hops take on a citrus rind tone rather than thick juicy pulp...mixed with a little pine. Not a bad thing. The malt counters the raw bitterness of the rind and balances the offering out at a slightly crisper level than expected. Solid-drinking IPA.

There's still actual weight on this skeleton and it counters a little differently with a light astringency on the palate - a little more biting of a boozy burn than anticipated. It slithers down the gullet with expected viscosity, leaving a finish with a little heft but an evaporating coolness.

As the pint progresses (actually the bomber) a dichotomy persists and widens with this offering - the heft of the caramel malt becomes more apparent, while the rind astringency of the hop profile and the booziness become much cooler, thereby pulling away the two dominant forces of this fine specimen from inner harmony and peace. Having said that it's a very good IPA that looks enticing as hell and generally plays the part well. Great extra and a nice IPA that I'm guessing would be even better on tap (but then again, aren't they all?). Very grateful for this one!

 2,046 characters

Photo of Mark
4/5  rDev +1.3%
look: 4 | smell: 4 | taste: 4 | feel: 4 | overall: 4

This IPA came in the form of a deep amber, good head retention and lacing. Inviting northwest hop aroma gives a preview of what's in store. Taste had a substantial piney hoppiness, IBU's must be up there. What was impressive was the smoothness at the same time. A very nice beer, refreshing and drinkable.

 305 characters

Photo of ygtbsm94
2.75/5  rDev -30.4%

Photo of Rifugium
3.38/5  rDev -14.4%
look: 3.5 | smell: 3 | taste: 3.5 | feel: 3.5 | overall: 3.5

First had: on tap at the Boundary Bay Brewery & Bistro
Served in a sampler glass...as part of my unsuccessful Seattle-to-Vancouver journey.

Another average brew from Boundary Bay. Good, but I've had better. Grainy, straw yellow pour; crisp, moderately hoppy aroma that follows through in the taste. Light mouthfeel and moderate drinkability.

 342 characters

Photo of AgentZero
3.92/5  rDev -0.8%
look: 3.5 | smell: 4 | taste: 4 | feel: 3.5 | overall: 4

A - Caramel colored beer with a minimal head and a little bit of spotting on the sides.

S - Sweet caramel malts with some resiny hops. Little bit of tropical fruit notes.

T - Taste follows the smell a lot. Sweet caramel and grainy malts. The hops profile is mostly bitter resin with a slight bit of pine. Pretty solid, although the bittering qualities can get overpowering if you are sensitive to that.

M - Medium bodied, lower carbonation.

O - Very good beer that highlights a resiny hops profile. Fairly easy to drink.

 524 characters

Photo of bumchilly25
4/5  rDev +1.3%

Photo of rodbeermunch
3.48/5  rDev -11.9%
look: 3.75 | smell: 3.25 | taste: 3.5 | feel: 3.75 | overall: 3.5

Comes out a color that is amber/copper, not the best clarity to it, unfiltered as they say. Darker than most ipas. Aroma was floral, not pungent, and some brown malt almost.

Mostly grapefruit and soapy hop bitterness. Plenty of crystal malt. That late 90s ipa feels. Bomber format sucks, but cheap price relative to it does not. Ultimately though, this is a beer that is reliable and has a longer shelf life than most ipas these days (this one seems a C hop).

Falls into that good and drinkable but nothing special.

 525 characters

Photo of smcolw
3.76/5  rDev -4.8%
look: 4 | smell: 3 | taste: 4 | feel: 4 | overall: 4

Light head but it leaves decent lace on the lace. The color is neutral amber and, from the keg, also cloudy.

The aroma is very mild--light hop is barely discernible.

The flavors match those you'd expect from an American IPA. Great hop bite, mild malt presense. Above average body with near perfect carbonation.

A nice offering for an IPA even if it is largely predictable.

 375 characters

Photo of Gavage
4.21/5  rDev +6.6%
look: 4.5 | smell: 3.5 | taste: 4.5 | feel: 4 | overall: 4.5

Appearance: hazy orange in color with a 2" head that lasts a long time. Some nice thick lacing develops duringthe session.

Smell: easily detectable citrus and pine.

Taste: nice malty base, orange and grapefruit citrus, pear, honey, and alcohol. Strong pine bitterness keeps it in balance.

Mouthfeel: crisp at the start, smooth and dry at the finish. Pretty long aftertaste with this one. Medium bodied.

Drinkability: bold flavors produce a nice quaffable beer here. Definitley worth seeking out.

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Photo of flexabull
4.1/5  rDev +3.8%
look: 4 | smell: 4 | taste: 4 | feel: 4 | overall: 4.5

Pours a light and clear gold color, with a decent white head.

Aromas are nice. Hard candies, orange citrus, and pine.

Taste is good, this is a nice hoppy IPA. Starts with some sharp pine resin, sweet oranges, and some grapefruit hops, while caramel malts sweetened up the finish just slightly.

Mouthfeel is smooth and full.

Drinkability is very good. This is simply just a tasty, easy to drink, hoppy Pacific Northwest IPA.

 427 characters

Photo of timwardjr
3.5/5  rDev -11.4%

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Inside Passage Ale from Boundary Bay Brewery & Bistro
3.95 out of 5 based on 61 ratings.
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