San Diego, Calif.
The Full Review
Once upon a time, beers were bitter. Very bitter. Particularly on the West Coast of the USA, craft brewers made IPAs as bitter as they could be. Beer geeks loved it. From these beers emerged a style, West Coast IPAs — dry, fruity, bitter concoctions that shook the palate and left a lasting impression. Ballast Point Sculpin IPA was a pioneer of this trend. But today, this type of bitter bomb is somewhat out of vogue. The beer pours orange-gold, fruity and fragrant, and has a strong malt backbone. Its flavors are heavy on the citrus — each sip is like taking a bite of a grapefruit, bitter and juicy. Flavor this big this can be a turnoff for many drinkers, and it takes a certain palate to enjoy, or even finish, a pint. Sculpin is a very good beer, but it should come with a warning: Bold, bitter, and boozy.