Rusty (1539) - Mesa, Arizona, USA - JUL 11, 2010
3.7 AROMA 7/10 APPEARANCE 4/5 TASTE 7/10 PALATE 3/5 OVERALL 16/20
Pours a hazy orange with a creamy off white head that leaves sticky lacing. Aroma is grapefruit, hops, a goo dose of malt and some spices. Flavor is grapefruit, grass, bitter pine resin, tropical fruits linger with the bitterness in the finish. Nice DIPA.
danielcurtis81 (1519) - San Diego, California, USA - APR 19, 2009
3.9 AROMA 7/10 APPEARANCE 4/5 TASTE 7/10 PALATE 4/5 OVERALL 17/20
Tap at the La Jolla Brew Pub. Pours a golden amber hue with an off white slightly lacing head. Nose is full of hop tones, mainly grapefruit. Flavors follow the hop profile. Really nice grapefruit entry with a bitter grapefruit peel aftertaste. Malt backing was pretty decent and mellowed the hops in a complementing fashion. A good drink on this warm day.
tokyogoat (1503) - San Diego, California, USA - OCT 28, 2009
3.8 AROMA 7/10 APPEARANCE 4/5 TASTE 7/10 PALATE 4/5 OVERALL 16/20
Poured a hazed amber with no head.
Nose is big on citrus and pine hops. Very pungent.
Taste is slightly harsh bitterness, moderate hop flavor, nice medium light body showcases the hops rather than worrying about balancing them. Without question the best Strauss beer iíve had.
doubleo (1432) - San Diego, California, USA - MAY 18, 2008
3.2 AROMA 7/10 APPEARANCE 3/5 TASTE 6/10 PALATE 3/5 OVERALL 13/20
UPDATED: OCT 2, 2008 On-tap at Churchillís. Ehhh. Pours cloudy orange with a thin off-white head, some lace. Smells hoppy sweet with a bit of big citrus, grapefruit or the like. Tastes big and sweet. Pretty hoppy but with lots of malts as well. The hops are too sweet for me. Sweet up front with malts and hops, bitter through the middle, and then sweet again on the finish. Thick, syrupy body, good carbonation.
Update: 10/1/08. On-tap at Karls C’Bad. Pours hazy amber with a good sized white head, spider web lace down the glass. Smells grassy and citrusy hoppy. Slightly sweet, slightly bitter. Tastes grassy and citrusy bitter, earthy and resiny. Full body, smooth carbonation. 748416=3.9
trevor211 (1399) - Seattle, Washington, USA - JUN 27, 2010
3.6 AROMA 8/10 APPEARANCE 4/5 TASTE 7/10 PALATE 3/5 OVERALL 14/20
Picked this puppy up from a bottle shop outside San Diego, and boy is it tasty. Pours a cloudy honey amber with a mid-size head, and packs a knockout punch of an aroma - intense citrus and piney hops, countered by an ice-cream sundaeís worth of caramel. Tons of ingredients in here. Flavor is equally punchy - sticky sweet, barely kept dry by all the hops and the high ABV. If youíre a lover of palate-bombs, this is up your alley. If you like íem mild, find something else. I thought it was dang tasty.
Chad9976 (1343) - Albany, New York, USA - AUG 31, 2013
3.6 AROMA 7/10 APPEARANCE 4/5 TASTE 7/10 PALATE 4/5 OVERALL 14/20
I poured a 22oz bottle into a goblet. It seemed to have a freshness date of June 24. I got this at #BBC13.
Appearance: Bright orange hue over a hazy body, though carbonation is visible. Forms a good sized, ivory, frothy head which laces and retains well.
Smell: Remarkably sweet for the style with a flowery, candy-like aroma plus fruit juice concentrate.
Taste: Sometimes I like balanced IPAs, other times I donít. Karl Strauss Big Barrel Double IPA makes me question which is better since it has both hop bitterness and malty sweetness to an extremely high degree. I donít think Iíve encountered a brew of the style that was so strong in both aspects simultaneously. This makes for an interesting beer to say the least. A great beer? Not so much.
This beer confuses my tongue. Initially, I taste a sweetness not unlike childrenís cereal or bubblegum or powdery candy like Sweet Tarts. But at the same time I also taste sharp, dry bitterness. Itís so intense, actually, that it almost seems to be salty. If this were an old bottle I could understand, but itís quite fresh. Thatís not to say the beer isnít enjoyable, quite the contrary. The sweetness, while strong, is not sickly or cloying - just flavorful enough to enjoy while itís in the mouth. The bitterness is perhaps even stronger, but it never flies out of control. The Nelson Sauvin hops also create for some subtle fruity characteristics, which are pleasant. Overall, this is a beer whose eccentricities are both attributes and flaws.
Drinkability: This is a beer that definitely lives up to its "Double IPA" name. Itís full-bodied with constant flavor, but itís delivered via a comfortable body. The mouthfeel is soft, calm and smooth with an aftertaste thatís relatively clean (just a subtle dryness). At 9% ABV, "Big Barrel" doesnít feel nearly as big as it is since thereís no alcohol warmth or distracting qualities. Highly recommend to pair with food to offset the palette.
BRW (1328) - Barcelona, SPAIN - APR 10, 2015
4 AROMA 8/10 APPEARANCE 4/5 TASTE 8/10 PALATE 4/5 OVERALL 16/20
Bottle. Copper colour with white head. Tropical frutis, pineapple, caramel aroma. Sweet, caramel, malt, tropical fruits, pineapple, resinous taste. Medium to full body.
deekyn (1325) - San Francisco, California, USA - FEB 2, 2013
3.4 AROMA 7/10 APPEARANCE 3/5 TASTE 7/10 PALATE 3/5 OVERALL 14/20
A - pours golden orange with high fluffy white head. Some lacing. S - very malty nose. Sticky sweet caramel and doughy malts. Over ripe pineapple juice, blood orange, soap and pine notes as well. Definitely a malt heavy beer. M - medium body, very round creamy mf. High carb. Smooth on the palate, bitter and drier on the end. T - soapy and piny hops up front. Fruity, citrus notes, pineapple, pear, with a strong caramel and bready malts on the palate. Bitter hops, vegetal notes, lemon zest and tea bitters. O - why are so many "big" dipas just malt madness. Pretty well balanced up front, but the palate is over malty. Pretty good dipa. 3.4
---Rated via Beer Buddy for iPhone
Lagunitasfan (1321) - San Diego, California, USA - DEC 17, 2009
3.9 AROMA 8/10 APPEARANCE 4/5 TASTE 7/10 PALATE 4/5 OVERALL 16/20
22 oz bottle from Bevmo. Orange amber with killer head. Just off white, thick, creamy, and lasts ítil the bottom of the glass. Nose is stinky high sweet bitter hops. Light and crisp. Taste is sharp and sweet and lightly sugary. Nice bitterness follows. Definite pine tree scents and tastes. More caramel as it warms. A little plain in the back half. Bitterness shows up after a pause. Nice one overall, especially at the $4.29 price point.
neepsntatties (1300) - Portland, Oregon, USA - JAN 30, 2010
4.1 AROMA 8/10 APPEARANCE 4/5 TASTE 8/10 PALATE 4/5 OVERALL 17/20
Got to try this thanks to, "hannont". I must say, I was wary of anything from Karl Strauss as my only experience with their beers was their hideous amber lager which I paid $8.00 for in Disneyís California Adventure because I was desperate for a beer! I later found out I could get some decent craft beers or imports at Uva Bar in Downtown Disney (Whew!). Colour... amber-orange with a thick white head. Nose... sweetly hoppy and quite resinous. Palate... lightly cloying, with pineapple, stone fruits, candied citrus, grapefruit zest and a medium length finish