Big Sky IPA | Big Sky Brewing Company

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BA SCORE
87
very good
473 Reviews
Big Sky IPABig Sky IPA
BEER INFO

Brewed by:
Big Sky Brewing Company
Montana, United States | website

Style: American IPA

Alcohol by volume (ABV): 6.20%

Availability: Year-round

Notes / Commercial Description:
In Montana, many classic memories are made right after someone says, “Hold my beer and watch this.” These bold, assertive moments deserve a bold, assertive beer – Big Sky IPA. A distinct hop presence and malty backbone will leave you refreshed and ready for your moment of glory. Hang on tight and enjoy the ride.

65 IBU

Added by beernut7 on 08-18-2002

BEER STATS
Reviews:
473
Ratings:
1,154
Avg:
3.86
pDev:
18.65%
 
 
Wants:
36
Gots:
138
For Trade:
0
User Reviews
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Reviews: 473 | Ratings: 1,154
Photo of scruffwhor
4.03/5  rDev +4.4%
look: 4.5 | smell: 4 | taste: 4 | feel: 4 | overall: 4

Thanks again Nick for the mixed sixer of Montana brews. Pours a great amber with light orange highlights. Light head after the pour, bt a strong film and ring of foam "stick around throughout the duration of these twelve ounces. Good bubbling too. The arom is a stinky hop resin that elludes to some old oranges and pine needles. T taste is a resiny hop wth lots of earthy hop pines, flowers, and orange peels. The palate has some thick liquid feel to it. Make think of a light ginger hop syrup. Pretty good session IPA. But you have to be in the right mood.

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Photo of Bighuge
4.24/5  rDev +9.8%
look: 4 | smell: 5 | taste: 4 | feel: 4 | overall: 4

Clear copper. Dirty white bubbly head. Lace is quite full. Great aroma of resin, pine, pink grapefruit pulp and pot. Really great aroma. The palate is hit with some greasy hop resin right off the bat. The pink grapefruit pulp is evident on the buds too. Bitter that way, though the overall bitterness is not too obtrusive. Malts only seem to add balance and add little to the flavor profile. Body is about medium at best. Appropriately carbonated. Slight sting of EtOH. Overall, this is a good IPA. Just not uper echelon.

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Photo of Beerandraiderfan
3.75/5  rDev -2.8%
look: 3.5 | smell: 3.5 | taste: 4 | feel: 4 | overall: 3.5

A darker ipa than expected, brown to amber. Average carbonation, head, lacing, aroma, a bit pinier.

The pine doesn't come out so much on the tongue, a decent amount of bitterness, but the hop flavor and zing comes out moreso than just plain pucker. Big malt background. Roast. Has that frequent wood to grittiness/graininess downbottle. Loses hop feel to something more bland. But hey, balanced.

Decent price, nothing special.

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Photo of drpimento
3.8/5  rDev -1.6%
look: 4.5 | smell: 3.75 | taste: 3.75 | feel: 3.75 | overall: 3.75

Nice beer. Poured at a good temperature with a large, foamy, lite tan, billowy head that settled after a while and some lace. Color is a clear medium amber with some bubble trails. Aroma is hop up front, some malt to balance. Flavor's like nose, all qualities are bolder and and add tang, slightest hint of sweet, ditto caramel. Body/carbonation good. Finish is like flavor, not too complex, yet goes vey well with spicy food.

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Photo of jrallen34
3.9/5  rDev +1%
look: 3.5 | smell: 3.5 | taste: 4 | feel: 3.5 | overall: 4.5

12oz bottle into an Orval glass...Pours a light clear copper with a light off white head that only rises about a finger, gone quickly...Light aroma shows off a touch of malt and light hops, good in general, would be great if a touch stronger...The taste is pretty good, mostly light hops from start to finish, a pretty easy to drink slightly above average ipa. Light pine in there too but take a couple points off because there is a slight medicinal bitter finish...Feel is fine, easy to drink.

A decent drink after work, nothing special, but not bad.

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Photo of rodbeermunch
3.59/5  rDev -7%
look: 3.25 | smell: 3.5 | taste: 3.75 | feel: 3.5 | overall: 3.5

I've seen some big time color variation in this, from amber/auburn to golden/yellow. Rose colored glasses or some shit. Hits the average marks for its 1/2" white head, retention and lacing.

Aroma gave off some mild pine notes. Not a huge amount. Taste was good, more pine, bitterness, good vegetal quality to the hopping. Plenty malty in the form of heavy toast, roast and caramel.

Its a worthy beer when fresh. Not gonna knock socks off, but no frills when under $2 a bottle.

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Photo of barnzy78
3.98/5  rDev +3.1%
look: 4.5 | smell: 4 | taste: 4 | feel: 3.5 | overall: 4

Originally reviewed this in 2009, deserved a re-review...I enjoyed this one much more than previously.

12oz bottle, pours amber/copper with a tall foamy beige head. Nice clarity, excellent head retention and lacing. Aromas are malty caramel with grapefruit citrus, and faint pine. Tastes are malty up-front with a nice caramel backbone followed by bold piny hops that have some grapefruit notes. Well balanced with a strong malt presence that holds up to the resinous hop profile. Mouth is medium bodied, smooth, and creamy with ample carbonation. Overall, I've had this one a few times now, and each time I seem to like it more and more. Even though it's not the best IPA out there, it has a good price-point for a 6er; I might actually buy this one again.

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Photo of Darkmagus82
4.03/5  rDev +4.4%
look: 3.75 | smell: 3.75 | taste: 4.25 | feel: 4 | overall: 4

Poured from bottle into a pint glass

Appearance – The beer pours a golden amber color a two finger of white colored foam. The head has a good level of retention, slowly fading to leave a light level of foamy lace on the sides of the glass.

Smell – The aroma of the beer has a big smell of a bready and citrus nature with the citrus being mainly of a grapefruit hop smell, but containing some aromas a sweet orange. Along with the grapefruit hop comes aromas of pine and a bit of an earthy smell as well.

Taste – The taste begins with a bready and very citrusy flavor with the presence of a bit of orange sweetness mixed with a grapefruit hop. Other fruity flavors of a tropical fruit nature (tangerine, mango, pineapple) are present from the start as well with these fading as the flavor advances on more toward the end of the taste. The bready flavors take on some more biscuit like notes as the taste advances with the hop really ramping it up toward the middle to the end. While initially only a grapefruit hop being present, hop flavors of pine and a floral nature, as well as an increase in the grapefruit come to fruition more at the end of the taste. With all these changes and a bit of the tropical flavors really coming back strong at the end, one is left with a decently hopped and smooth flavor to linger on the tongue.

Mouthfeel – The body of the beer is on the medium side in terms of thickness and creaminess with a carbonation level that is on the rather high side. Both actually fit the beers flavor profile quite well with the higher carbonation really enhancing the crispness of the brew all while the medium body did the same, but upheld the nice blend of hop flavors.

Overall – This was a rather easy drinking and quite enjoyable IPA overall. Rather tasty.

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Photo of maximum12
3.26/5  rDev -15.5%
look: 4 | smell: 3 | taste: 3 | feel: 3 | overall: 4

Purchased as part of a Big Sky 12 pack mixer. Grabbed this for two reasons: one, I've never had anything from Big Sky & two, having non-beer lovers over & I couldn't have them raiding my stash of Surly & Bell's now, could I? My preciooooussseeesss.

Pours a translucent golden color, nice looking, smell is straight-up hops.

Nice taste to it. There's not a lot of perceptible depth, but a nice malt backing & the hops are a little quieter than expected from the nose on it.

Surprised at the 6.2% ABV, this looks & feels like a very competent session beer. Easy down, I envision sitting out on the deck drinking this on a warm evening. If it would just quit f*cking snowing, maybe that could even happen.

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Photo of Gusler
3.92/5  rDev +1.6%
look: 3.5 | smell: 4 | taste: 4 | feel: 3.5 | overall: 4

The beer pours a nice clear copper color from the 12 ounce bottle with a modest white creamy head that fades away leaving the lace to coat the glass in a thin sheet. Nose has a citrus like crispness, chock full of spicy hop aroma, sweet malt, and a bit of fruit, start has a pleasant malt profile, sweet at the front and a bit of hop bitterness at the back, top is medium in feel. Finish continues the hop spiciness; somewhat sweet dry aftertaste ends the beer, a nice drinking IPA.

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Photo of champ103
3.58/5  rDev -7.3%
look: 4 | smell: 3.5 | taste: 3.5 | feel: 4 | overall: 3.5

A: Pours a nearly clear orange/reddish color. A two finger off white head forms with good retention. Some sticky lace is left down the glass.
S: Pine, grapefruit, and bitterness in the nose. Some floral and grassy hops as well. Not a lot of sweetness for balance.
T: Follows the nose. Pine, grapefruit, and bitterness. No sweetness really. A typical IPA, but not bad.
M/D: A medium body and carbonation. A nice crisp snap on the tongue. Not hard to drink, but the bitterness makes this a one and done for me.

Fairly typical for the style, but not bad. Worth a try, and any hop head will enjoy this.

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Photo of BeerFMAndy
4.31/5  rDev +11.7%
look: 5 | smell: 4 | taste: 4.5 | feel: 4.5 | overall: 4

12 oz bottle poured into a Sierra Nevada imperial pint. 6.2% ABV, No date.

A - I would not change a thing about how this beer looks. Beautifully clear golden orange amber color with a huge pillowy light beige crown of head. Fantastic retention finally ends up in a pile minutes later but leaves adherent lace all over the glass in clumpy rings.

S - Citrusy hops burst from the glass with style in this beer. A great aroma of American hops showcases pine needle, grapefruit citrus that smells freshly squeezed, and a well-blended floral aromatic quality. Solid malty sweetness backs up the hops well.

T - While being well-balanced between the submissive sweet caramel malts and pungent hops, the hops just seem to stand out so well. Not overpowering, rather, distinctive, the hops feature dry and herbal floral flavors that have pine and citrus undertones to them. Grapefruit is present but not over-the-top like a lot of AIPAs these days. Very nicely balanced.

M - Spectacular blend of very dry floral hops with sweet caramel malts. A good medium body but crisp and refreshing, lively carbonated finish that has an average bitter finish. Not tongue-shredding.

D - This IPA is just a solid AIPA I could have a few of no problem. Not something I'd session all night, but in a world of highly hop-saturated IPAs and DIPAs, this is a fantastic AIPA I'd welcome into my glass at any time.

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Photo of ZAP
4.12/5  rDev +6.7%
look: 4 | smell: 4.5 | taste: 4 | feel: 4 | overall: 4

*I reviewed this on tap from a bar but those can be skewed sometimes due to the surrondings so I thought I would also add a review from a bottle. (To be fair I am not reading my first review)

Nice deep copper color....great aroma of fresh citrus...oranges...sweet grapefruit...tangerines...also a little leafy cannibus..

The taste is good too but not quite as strong as the aroma...again big on the citrus..guesiing simcoe hops are used which are favorites of mine...more of a fresh hoppiness than a flat out bitter IPA. although this does close with a nice hit of pine, bong resin and tobacco...,malt is not noticable but this doesn't feel unbalanced at all...a little thin bodied...call it the light side of medium...

Pretty impressive brew from Big Sky...a very enjoyable every day IPA....perhaps just a rung below the big dogs in this style but not that far away really

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Photo of StJamesGate
4.03/5  rDev +4.4%
look: 4.5 | smell: 4 | taste: 4 | feel: 4 | overall: 4

Pours ruby amber with a slow-fading dense tawny head that sticks and sheets. Caramel apple tart and orange Bubblicious nose. Starting out to be a big beer. Big strawberry rhubarb malts, an arresting cotton candy hit in the middle, and tropical fruit punch and orange rind hops with some lemony high notes. Black pepper burn in the resiny finish. Lingering IBUs. Chewy, medium, oily and round.

DIPA in an IPAs clothing. Nice fruity Simcoe backed with plenty of caramel backbone.

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Photo of Durge
3.85/5  rDev -0.3%
look: 3.5 | smell: 3.5 | taste: 4 | feel: 4 | overall: 4

A clear copper color with just a thin cover of white and decent lacing streaking throughout. The aroma is a decided flowery grapefruit hops with some lemon highlights, almost a resemblance to sweet turnips at times. The flavor is a nice blend of grapefruit and carmel with the accent on the hops, but not overdone at all. It has fine carbonation, fairly tangy but there is also a malty creaminess to it. A nice feel and a decent tasting IPA that is easy drinking. Recommended.

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Photo of CrazyDavros
3.69/5  rDev -4.4%
look: 3 | smell: 4 | taste: 3.5 | feel: 4 | overall: 3.75

Pours amber with a fading head.
Nose shows sweet syrupy malt and some soft piny hops.
Malty flavours, quite clean. Some piny hops. Not particularly complex. An assertive bitterness in the finish.

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Photo of KarlHungus
4/5  rDev +3.6%
look: 4 | smell: 4 | taste: 4 | feel: 4 | overall: 4

This brew pours a hazy amber-orange color. The head is one inch in height, and recedes slowly into nice lacing. The aroma is of grapefruit, with hints of citrus and pine. The taste is of like the aroma, but a little more intense. The aftertaste is nice and bitter, but not overly so. The mouthfeel is medium bodied with nice carbonation. Overall, this is a good IPA, and I would certainly drink this one again.

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Photo of jera1350
3.87/5  rDev +0.3%
look: 3.5 | smell: 4 | taste: 3.5 | feel: 4 | overall: 4.5

Pours a deep copper color. Very small head that is quickly gone. Fair amount of lacing.

Smell is of hops with a small bit of malt.

Taste is hoppy with malt. This is a very well balanced beer. Not overpowering in any aspect. Just a flavorful beer.

Medium bodied with average carbonation.

Highly drinkable. Not filling nor overpowering in any way. This is a very sessionable beer. For the price, this is a solid go to beer.

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Photo of andrenaline
4/5  rDev +3.6%
look: 4 | smell: 4 | taste: 4 | feel: 4 | overall: 4

A - Pours a nice dark copper colour, finger of beige head, some retention and nice sticky lacing.

S - Sweet pine and citrus hops with delicious caramel and toffe undertones.

T - Reminiscent of a DIPA on the hop presence, nice and sweet with bitterness that is well balanced. Caramel and toffee lingers alongside the bitter citrus notes. Hop presence is slightly herbal.

M - Medium bodied ale that goes down smooth and finishes nice and wet.

D - A solid go-to option for a hop lover. Nice hop presence with a tasty caramel/toffee malt balance. Quite enjoyed this one and definitely worth a try.

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Photo of popery
3.18/5  rDev -17.6%
look: 4 | smell: 3.5 | taste: 3 | feel: 3 | overall: 3

Pours fairly dark for the style. It's a shade of reddish gold with a good white head. Aroma is fairly hoppy but not altogether pleasing. Citrus, pine, grass and an herbaceous woodiness are all present from the hops. The woody note is my main source of complaint. It's even stronger in the taste than the aroma, lending the flavor of fresh bark or a thick stem - uninteresting and blandly bitter. Otherwise, the flavor is fairly dry with some yeastiness. Malt flavors are mild, just a boring background bread flavor. Feel is a bit effervescent but finishes thin.

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Photo of OWSLEY069
3.48/5  rDev -9.8%
look: 4 | smell: 3.5 | taste: 3.5 | feel: 3 | overall: 3.5

Pours a clean orange-ish color with a light tan head. In the aroma, mellow orange citrus and hints of pine hops. In the taste, a gingerbread like maltiness and pine hops stand out. A small hop bite and a medium to light bodied mouthfeel, with a semi dry pine hop in the aftertaste. Quite malty, yet light bodied, mellow and decent.

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Photo of tavernjef
4.17/5  rDev +8%
look: 4 | smell: 4.5 | taste: 4 | feel: 4.5 | overall: 4

On-tap at the Happy Gnome: Gorgeous dark copper color. Clear body and glimmering. Thin and quick cap of dusty white foam slips away soon after the pour. Lacing is in a few globby strings and bigger spots.

Aroma is clean, crisp, and rounded in a wonderful fruity sweetness thats deep and rich mixing well with a hoppy grapefruit pith thats been bruned or scorched into a dry pine bittering sour tone. Quite nice. A bit resinous and greasy too.

Flavors are solid with good depth and roundedness, crisp, clean, and bold. Short and sweet in the front, kinda dark and apple-y, sweet, toasty, and firm. Middle, well, there isn't really a middle as it skips right to the finish with bright and crisp hoppyness of pine and juicy citrus tones. Clean, milding, and smooth bitterness ensues into the finish with a bit of grapefruityness sliding around in a dark and resinous center. It's quite good actually, and possibly deserving of a better number then what I'm giving it, but there was something about it that seemed unperplexing and medium about its flavors. I do, however, like its darker, thicker, tone.Hmmm....tough to call, could be better but how, I'm unsure. Complexity? Caramel?

Feel is somewhat thicker then most other IPA's; given its clean and crisp nature. Somehow, and whatever the reason why, it tends to carry a bit more darker heavyness for its underbelly then others that don't use the caramel brigade of malts. This was pale but rounded, semi toasted, clean and bitter, but sweet and dark. A nice aspect to the beer and its flavors. Mellows out some as it warms and the bitterness tends to seep in and out from time to time. It's darker nature and simple yet supple and giving bitterness does slow down the drinking of the brew. It's got a uniquely heavy crispness and, almost, greasy fashion. More of a "winter" IPA then for warmer months, but damn good none the less.

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Photo of morimech
4.03/5  rDev +4.4%
look: 4.5 | smell: 4 | taste: 4 | feel: 4 | overall: 4

This pours a clear copper with a nice 1/2 inch head that sticks around for awhile. Tiny bubbles continously being released. Leaves some nice sticky lacing.

The smell is of floral hops and grass with a hint of pine. A very pleasant IPA aroma.

The taste is dominated by hops which you would expect. Piney and dry is the way I would describe the taste. It is medium bodied and perfectly carbonated. Very satisfying and a very good IPA and I would very much like another.

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Photo of Daniellobo
4/5  rDev +3.6%
look: 4 | smell: 4 | taste: 4 | feel: 4 | overall: 4

Nice and very drinkable draft IPA

Presentation: 16 oz draft offering. Menu offers a fair one liner description and brewery location. Served in pilsner-like glass.

A - Amber body with a 1/4" head, good retention and lacing.

S - Resin/pine character with citrus/grapefruit notes.

T - Flavor follow with a hoppy profile that is not shy at all but does not assert itself too much either. Grapefruit, and pine.

M - Medium body and carbonation with a nice crisp bitter finish.

D - Nicely drinkable, almost balanced leaning on its hoppy side, which works rather well.

Notes: I'll be happy to revisit on tap, and sure enough when I come across a bottle. Nice IPA.

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Photo of Dope
3.83/5  rDev -0.8%
look: 4 | smell: 3.5 | taste: 4 | feel: 3.5 | overall: 4

A: Pours out a nice clear brown with quite a foamy off-white head. Decent lacing.

S: Nothing overpowering but not nearly as subtle as some other IPAs I've smelled. Mid-range. Some nice pine, earth and a bit of malt.

T: Good pine hop, really shows up on the back end versus up front. Long lasting bitterness in the aftertaste.

M: Medium body, carbonation is good, pretty standard.

O: Nothing world shattering but overall a very nice IPA. Not a super hop bomb and not an upfront west-coast style IPA. Just plain good, not too hoppy, not too malty, not too bitter IPA.

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Big Sky IPA from Big Sky Brewing Company
3.86 out of 5 based on 1,154 ratings.
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