Let’s face it. You can’t help but get caught up in all the great autumn beers that are out right now. There’s a sh’load of them out there, but sadly, most of these Oktoberfest beers, pumpkin ales and spiced bombs have been floating around our stores and bars since late August. It’s time for a minor reset on the palate to let our tongues readjust and remember the more refreshing side of beers before we get into the holiday madness—with all of those crazy, malty, boozy and cheer-driven winter solstice offerings. These beers will remind you of what it’s like to be a normal, beer-drinking human.
Brewery/Brand: Ballast Point
Serving Style: 12-oz. bottle, 12-oz. can, draft
Description: This IPA pours a nice, nearly clear, golden-orange color with two healthy fingers of off-white head that lingers nearly to the last drop. The nose is fruit-forward with a big dose of grapefruit and some vague tropical fruits. Though the aroma is certainly juicy and hoppy, there are some noticeable caramel and toffee malts lurking underneath. The taste is also quite juicy. It starts with a ton of citrusy hops that come through with a moderate bitterness and a lower amount of dankness and earthiness. Next come the malts—they are mild and a bit toasty with pleasant caramel balancing things out. The finish is long, bitter and fruity, suggesting notes of pine and spruce as it tried to dry out.
Overview: This version of Sculpin IPA has grapefruit added; the grapefruit flavor enhances the citrus profile of the hops. It showcases bright flavors and aromas of apricot, peach, mango and lemon. It is refreshing and radler-like in its fruitiness. It’s bloody brilliant!