BitchesBrew (715) - Fort Collins, Colorado, USA - SEP 20, 2005
4.4 AROMA 8/10 APPEARANCE 4/5 TASTE 9/10 PALATE 5/5 OVERALL 18/20
UPDATED: FEB 28, 2006 [bomber, re-rate 2/28/06] Pours a nice, clear amber with a good head and lacing. Full citrus flavors that seem to get more complex as the beer warms. I think this has the perfect balance of bitterness, crazy hops, malts and fruits, yet still remains highly drinkable. This is probably the most well-balanced, easy drinking hop monster I have tried.
hayduke (4930) - Eureka, California, USA - SEP 19, 2005
4.7 AROMA 9/10 APPEARANCE 5/5 TASTE 9/10 PALATE 5/5 OVERALL 19/20
UPDATED: APR 8, 2007 22 oz bottle. However I would have been happy if this had come in a 55 gal. drum, it was that good. Poured a deep, very clear amber color with nice white head. Hops, hops, hops. I love IPA and this was the best ever. There are a few other flavors hiding under the hops (orange and grapefruit maybe?), but that just adds to the enjoyment. I simply love this. I would rate it 5.0 except I need to leave room for something I have not yet tasted. But this was close to perfect for an IPA fan. Update: This is finally available in the local storres. It is my very favorite fully available beer.
chriso (7513) - London, Greater London, ENGLAND - SEP 18, 2005
4 AROMA 8/10 APPEARANCE 3/5 TASTE 8/10 PALATE 4/5 OVERALL 17/20
Bottle at GBBF, August 2005. It is very hoppy, with the usual pine, resin, grapefruit etc that you get from these big US hop monsters. But I actually found it smoother than I anticipated and, although it is fairly bitter, its not overdone or overaggressive. More refined than the brawny bruiser I was expecting. I guess Iím just getting more used to this style of beer. Same happened with lambic. First time I had a proper one it a case of "wow, whatís going on here, not sure I can handle this". Now its more likely that Iíll find them too restrained. Iím not complaining about the Ruination mind you. Its just that its a pleasure to drink rather than the extreme, and hugely challenging, experience that it might once have been.
Brad (364) - Berkley, Michigan, USA - SEP 9, 2005
3.7 AROMA 8/10 APPEARANCE 4/5 TASTE 7/10 PALATE 3/5 OVERALL 15/20
22 o z bottle: Pours a completely tranparent amber/orange body with a large foamy white head that is fully lasting to the last sip. Aromas are dominated by the hops, slightly fruity and slightly spicy. Flavor is surprising at first (like the first sip of a devil dancer) with just massive hop bitterness, bitingly at that, I wish I couldíve seen my face! Flavor mellows, though only slightly, as your palate warms up to the beer, and the sweeter notes, oranges, pinapple present themselves. Definately underbalanced, it is afterall a showcase of hop glory.
punkeedo (498) - Covington, Louisiana, USA - SEP 8, 2005
4.2 AROMA 9/10 APPEARANCE 3/5 TASTE 8/10 PALATE 5/5 OVERALL 17/20
This is a quality brew. The aroma is of orange peels and hops. The hops completely blow you away at first with strong bitterness, but as the other ratings will confer, the taste sweetens as you adapt to the hops (or as your taste buds are "ruinated") and as the beer warms. Not much head and a light amber color make this one fairly attractive to look at as well. A very good IPA.
NachlamSie (3279) - Denver, Colorado, USA - SEP 7, 2005
4.3 AROMA 9/10 APPEARANCE 4/5 TASTE 8/10 PALATE 4/5 OVERALL 18/20
UPDATED: OCT 1, 2008 bottle. I love this IIPA. It is very assertive with a commendable depth of clean pine and citrus notes. Malts are adequate and juicy to provide balance. This is exactly the kind of beer I hope to drink when I get a West Coast IIPA.
[Feb 5, 2008]
Thank God this beer is locally available because we have a serious deficiency of overly hoppy beers and this does it for me every time. Furthermore, I commend the use of a date stamp. This is an excellently "balanced" IIPA with serious hop qualities that highlight sappy pine and a reasonable citrus presence while maintaining enough malt profile to add some sweet complexity. Very solid.
[June 9, 2008]
Bomber best before July 8, 2008. I have been craving good old Ruination for a couple of months now but all the stores in my area have old, dusty bottles of it. A trip to Chattanooga brought me a fresh bottle which had been residing in a cooler, nonetheless. I eagerly popped the cap to be instantly greeted with a ridiculous hop aroma wafting through the narrow opening of the bomber. A pour into a glass reveals clean, deep, and powerful scents of grapefruit, orange, peach. The mouthfeel is appropriately sticky and dry which complements the vast citrus qualities. Deep sips provide stings and dryness over my whole palate. Ruinationís balance in spite of monstrous character is admirable. and date stamps on IIPAís? What a novel idea.
[September 30, 2008]
On tap at Trappeze. Holy mother of shit. A fresh keg of Ruination is a gift from the glorious heavens above to remind us mere humans that there is a reason to endure life. smell = hops. Honeydew, grapefruit, pine, lemon, peppers, wood, it’s never ending. The aroma has virtually no malt qualities detected beneath the bitter onslaught. When I take a sip, I finally get some sweet, fruity character which provides some pathetic attempt at countering the behemoth hop explosion. What a gigantic and clean IIPA. The bitterness is mouthwatering with suggestions of everything from citrus to wood to herbs. Yes.
Gorbalev (3000) - Ontario, CANADA - SEP 6, 2005
4.1 AROMA 9/10 APPEARANCE 3/5 TASTE 8/10 PALATE 4/5 OVERALL 17/20
A big thanks to blankboy for saving this one to share with me - much appreciated. Lovely strong hop aroma - incredible. Orange appearance, nice sized white head. Very strong hop taste. Medium mouthfeel - almost full bodied - a substantial beer. Some alcohol present but complimentary. The hops are incredibly dominant, but strangely, I found it pretty well balanced - as much as it could be anyway. Once the mouth adjusts, I also got some citrus and malt flavours. A hop headís dream ad certainly one of my favourites in this style - without looking at my numbers, Iíd say I remembered enjoying the Rogue Brutal Bitter a bit more, but thatís about it.
DrunkenWeasel (224) - Portland, Oregon, USA - SEP 6, 2005
4.1 AROMA 8/10 APPEARANCE 4/5 TASTE 8/10 PALATE 4/5 OVERALL 17/20
Pours rich somewhat dark amber color. Medium white head that is short lived. Smell very strongly of hops and not much else, but some malt undertones exsist. WOW is this beer bitter, wonderfully mouth harmingly bitter. Very nice but very hard to dirnk a 22 of it alone. Tastes of pine hops and bitterness just like it smells.
KAggie97 (3529) - Ugly, Hot, and Humid Spring, Texas, USA - SEP 3, 2005
3.9 AROMA 9/10 APPEARANCE 5/5 TASTE 7/10 PALATE 3/5 OVERALL 15/20
Pours about as beautiful an amber color as you can possibly hope for in a beer. Aroma is a punch in the stomach of grapefruit and orange. Flavor is transferred directly from the nose, but comes nowhere near the claims of enormous hops bite. Still, an awesome brew.
blankboy (7227) - Toronto, Ontario, CANADA - SEP 3, 2005
4.1 AROMA 8/10 APPEARANCE 4/5 TASTE 8/10 PALATE 4/5 OVERALL 17/20
Bottle shared with tupalev. Pours a clear sparkling orange with an average frothy off-white head. Good lacing. The aroma of fresh hops and citrus is milder than I thought it would be but it smells great. The flavour, whoa, they arenít kidding about 100+ IBUs! Hopheads rejoice, as they put it: "Liquid poem to the glory of the hop!" -- yes Itís frigginí hoppy but incredibly well balanced with some sweetness and citrus. This is, plain and simple, a fantastic beer. Stone never dissapoints.