Around two years ago, Ballast Point started distributing their beers in the Buffalo area. They did the usual introductory tap takeover at a local bar, which my step-dad and I gleefully attended. We pulled our usual hijinks, getting into the tasting area early like a couple of groupies. Ballast Point came to the event with an arsenal of beers, but one in particular knocked our socks off – Habanero Sculpin.
If you are a fan of West Coast IPA’s, Ballast Point Sculpin is one of the more superb IPA’s you can get your hands on regularly. It’s expensive, about $14.99 a six pack, but is insanely fresh, citrusy, and hoppy. It’s very good. Ballast Point took this IPA, and infused it with habanero peppers. This was also very good.
Up until that point, I hadn’t had a hot pepper infused beer before. This beer was fantastic. It had the hoppy, citrusy, deliciousness that the Sculpin IPA has, but with a kick of heat after you swallow. No other hot pepper beer I’ve had measures up to it. It’s not just the heat, its the overall balance of flavors that coincide with the heat. Other pepper infused beers fail at achieving this delicate balance.
Just recently, this has now become available in the bottle. I’m not sure how available, but we managed to get our hands on a few six packs. Would the bottled version measure up to what I tasted 2 years go? You bet your ass! If you can find yourself some, I highly recommend this beer.
Ballast Point Habanero Sculpin
7% ABV 70 IBUs