Serve in Shaker, Snifter


on tap

Broad Distribution

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RATINGS: 218   WEIGHTED AVG: 3.71/5   SEASONAL: Special   EST. CALORIES: 270   ABV: 9%
ďTo kick off this series of intense hoppy beers, we wanted to go big. Imported New Zealand Nelson Sauvin hops provide a vibrant tropical aroma that raises eyebrows and expectations. Aggressive amounts of Warrior and Ahtanum hops produce an assertive bitterness that stands out against a firm malt backbone. Balanced even at 90 IBUs, Big Barrel leaves a considerable first impression that serves as a prelude of things to come.Ē According to a brewery rep, the beer will be distributed throughout Southern California and theyíre planning on doing 1,000 cases of 22ís. Specs: Color 15.4 SRM ALC 9.0% IBU 90 PLATO 20

   AROMA 7/10   APPEARANCE 3/5   TASTE 8/10   PALATE 3/5   OVERALL 15/20
haddon90 (1575) - Costa Mesa, California, USA - JAN 6, 2013
Bottle. Pours a clear copper color with a nice frothy head. Nice hoppy aroma with some grapefruit and lemon zest in the background. Tart, tangy flavor with a strong sense of hops and a hit of the alcohol. Not bad for a double IPA but I was hoping for more hops.

   AROMA 7/10   APPEARANCE 4/5   TASTE 6/10   PALATE 3/5   OVERALL 15/20
Dixonian (1562) - Plano, Texas, USA - MAR 2, 2011
Bottle. Light orange pour capped off with some white head. Hop bitterness approaching the unbalanced side but still nice. Grapefruit and other citrus hop aromas and flavors. The nelson sauvin hop is very interesting and smooth - I seem to enjoy every brew that employs it.

   AROMA 9/10   APPEARANCE 3/5   TASTE 7/10   PALATE 3/5   OVERALL 16/20
GMCC2181 (1561) - Newark, Delaware, USA - MAY 10, 2011
Bottle from HH22... Great nose on this beer. Lots of tropical grapefruits, orange, and pines notes. Reminded me of 3F Dread. Decent pour....orange in color, average head. Taste is decent.... bet its great on tap. Pine notes, orange, tropical juices.. little on the sweeter side but not sugary. Malty notes as well. Medium body, average carbonation. Overall: wish I could have this on tap.... but still a nice dipa. thanks Tim

   AROMA 7/10   APPEARANCE 4/5   TASTE 7/10   PALATE 3/5   OVERALL 16/20
Rusty (1545) - Mesa, Arizona, USA - JUL 11, 2010
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.

   AROMA 8/10   APPEARANCE 4/5   TASTE 8/10   PALATE 4/5   OVERALL 17/20
neepsntatties (1520) - Portland, Oregon, USA - JAN 30, 2010
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

   AROMA 7/10   APPEARANCE 4/5   TASTE 7/10   PALATE 4/5   OVERALL 17/20
danielcurtis81 (1519) - San Diego, California, USA - APR 19, 2009
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.

   AROMA 7/10   APPEARANCE 4/5   TASTE 7/10   PALATE 4/5   OVERALL 14/20
Chad9976 (1505) - Albany, New York, USA - AUG 31, 2013
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.

   AROMA 7/10   APPEARANCE 4/5   TASTE 7/10   PALATE 4/5   OVERALL 16/20
tokyogoat (1503) - San Diego, California, USA - OCT 28, 2009
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.

   AROMA 8/10   APPEARANCE 4/5   TASTE 7/10   PALATE 3/5   OVERALL 14/20
trevor211 (1479) - Seattle, Washington, USA - JUN 27, 2010
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.

   AROMA 7/10   APPEARANCE 3/5   TASTE 6/10   PALATE 3/5   OVERALL 13/20
doubleo (1432) - San Diego, California, USA - MAY 18, 2008
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

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