Mango Even Keel Session Ale and Ginger Big Eye IPA by Ballast Point Brewing Company, San Diego, California
Reinheitsgebot, the Bavarian purity law of 1516 outlined that the only ingredients used for the brewing of beer would be barley, hops and water. I assume that yeast or bacteria wasn’t part of the law because we didn’t truly understand the microorganisms until it was studied by Louis Pasteur in the nineteenth century. However, five-hundred years later, it seems anything goes in beer ingredients…from fruit, vegetables, chocolate, spices to shrunken heads (just wait).
Many breweries are releasing a “fruited” version of an established IPA or introducing new fruited IPA. To me, one of the better applications was Ballast Point’s Grapefruit Sculpin – 91 Points based on their classic base beer Sculpin – 95 Points. They even released a Pineapple version (I can’t find my review – but it wasn’t very good) and Habanero Sculpin – 84 Points versions of Sculpin as well.
Mango Even Keel
Tasting: May 5, 2016
Style: Session Ale (fruited)
Beer #: 929
This can was given to me by a friend. As he handed it to me, he said, “This is the worst beer I’ve ever had in my life!”…Uh-thanks, I think. In case you were still wondering, session ales are named as such because you can have more than one in a “session” (party, picnic or night out) and still remain standing.
I don’t know I’d go so far as to call this the worst thing I’ve ever had. The aroma is indisputable mango and really nothing else. Has an artificial mango flavor and a crushing bitterness that has little discernible characteristics other than being bitter.
It’s a session ale and it’s hard to expect any depth but they done an okay job making this interesting – 85 points.
Ginger Big Eye IPA
Tasting: May 5, 2016
Style: IPA (Spiced)
Beer #: 930
Another twist on an established base beer – Ballast Point Big Eye – 89 Points. Ginger is mellow and complimentary and to me it might be the highlight of this beer. Base beer still dominates and it has some girth – medium/full body but the hops are flat and somewhat stale. 86 points.
How about one more fruited beer?
Stone Enjoy by 5/30/16 Tangerine
Tasting: May 6, 2016
Style: IPA (Fruit)
Beer #: 931
Again, a twist on a reputable classic Stone Enjoy by …IPA – 94 points This time, it’s tangerine that’s added. It’s an awesome base beer and the tangerine addition really plays nicely. Tangerine flavor compliments a fresh tropical hop. Enough malt backbone to balance it off…well executed. Massive 9.4% but not a hint of alcohol. 93 points.