Friday, February 6, 2015

Ballast Point Grapefruit Sculpin

The Stats
Style: American IPA
ABV: 7.00%
Current Ratings...
- Beer Advocate: 4.33/5
- RateBeer: 3.94/5

Sculpin is one of my all-time favorite IPA's. I first got word that they were distributing their variations a few months back and was getting to the point where I was going to have to make a trade for some. Luckily, my local store got a (very) small supply, so I got my two bottle allotment and couldn't wait to crack one open.

Pours a clear, glowing orange and it generated three fingers of a white, foamy head.

Bitter, earthy hops on the nose, but I did not expect THIS much grapefruit. Did they just hand-squeeze whole grapefruits into each batch? I kid, but seriously, you might confuse this for grapefruit juice in a blind test.

The taste is everything I love about Sculpin and more. Bitter hops on the initial sip give way to some mango and orange with grassy hop bitterness. After all that, the acidic grapefruit hits the middle of your tongue with a thud and stays through to the finish. Interestingly, while the fruit flavor is there on the end, this is actually more bitter on the finish than from what I remember from the standard Sculpin. Bitter hops kind of sandwich your tongue on the start and finish leaving the middle for grapefruit. Now that's a sandwich I'd take to lunch everyday.

This has a medium body with a small amount of carbonation bubbles. With it's bitter start and finish, it isn't unpleasant and has no lingering hop flavor, but the acidic grapefruit clings to your tongue (in a good way). It's just a smooth IPA and you could easily kill a six-pack of this thing in no time.

Grapefruit Sculpin takes all the delicious qualities of regular Sculpin and adds a blast of bitter, acidic fruit juice. There have been other attempts in recent memory for grapefruit IPA's, but Ballast Point's Sculpin variation did it right with it's herbal, grassy hops and tart citrus that is bitter and refreshing at the same time. If it was available as much as standard Sculpin, then it would be in my fridge year-round.


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