Sammys (428) - Portland, Maine, USA - APR 4, 2004
4.1 AROMA 8/10 APPEARANCE 4/5 TASTE 8/10 PALATE 5/5 OVERALL 16/20
I think my experience of this may be tainted, as I drank it AFTER having had half a fifth of Hennessey VSOP. FWIW: Very floral aroma with a nice coppery color and appealing head, flavor was pale and crystal malt with floral and citrus notes that lingered. Hoppy? Yes, but not ruinuous. Would like to try again.
DocLock (8244) - Lower Pottsgrove, Pennsylvania, USA - MAR 31, 2004
4.3 AROMA 9/10 APPEARANCE 4/5 TASTE 9/10 PALATE 4/5 OVERALL 17/20
750 ml bottle. Gorgeous, embossed bottle with a gargoyle on the front. Pours deep straw yellow, with medium head. Aroma is very strong hops and citrus. First taste is SUPER hoppy. Finish is smooth and somewhat tart, with hops and lemon all the way down. Great beer. The bottle states "By the time you develop a taste for this beer, you may find that you are permanently ruined from being able to enjoy lesser brews". I agree. Stone makes innovative, strong beers. If I may use Stone-type language, "This beer will tie your hands behind your back, and forcible pound tons of hops down your palate, and then it will defile your girlfriend!". A wonderful beer. Hopheads rejoice, all others need not apply.
YourDarkLord (1800) - Urbana, Illinois, USA - MAR 31, 2004
4.2 AROMA 9/10 APPEARANCE 3/5 TASTE 9/10 PALATE 3/5 OVERALL 18/20
Had this as part of an intense tasting with family. Tasted Stone Arrogant Bastard, Ruination IPA, Smoked Porter, and Imperial Stout, and finished off with 3Floyds Dark Lord. Pours amber with white head and gets better after that. Potent aroma of grapefruit, flowers, earthiness. Out of this world flavor highlighted by rich hops. Got to be my favorite IPA.
jables (101) - Champaign, Illinois, USA - MAR 30, 2004
3.4 AROMA 6/10 APPEARANCE 3/5 TASTE 6/10 PALATE 3/5 OVERALL 16/20
Pours an orange opaque light colored nectar with no head.
aroma is HOPS!!!!!, light fresh pomes, and dried pomes (apples, pears, apricots, peaches, etc.). alcohol too, like solvent alcohol, harsh.
Flavor is HOPS!!!!!, Syrupy, canned peaches and pears and apricots. oh yeah and Alcohol, like solvent alcohol, harsh.
MF is pretty good, maybe slightly heavy but it's suitable.
Overall, I'm enjoying this because it's big on hops and alcohol, but it's not as complex as other I2PA's. It's heavy on hops and alcohol and therefore far and away better than the vast majority of brew and actually I don't feel this is Stone's best job of masking high alcohol levels at all. Not a favorite, but it's good.
Yankovitch333 (612) - Baltimore, Maryland, USA - MAR 27, 2004
4.5 AROMA 8/10 APPEARANCE 5/5 TASTE 9/10 PALATE 5/5 OVERALL 18/20
I acquired this beer in December and I finally decided to open it. Wow. Poured a beautiful gold with a thick white head. Lots of grapefruit and hops in the aroma, along with lemon zest. Lots of hops and citrus fruits on the tongue. The hops were a bit mellow, but it was perfect. This beer just begged me to drink it, and I didn't have a problem with that. It had a wonderful bitter hop finish. Please, please drink me! That's all the beer kept saying. So I drank and I drank. Wow. I love this beer.
zen (41) - Long Beach, California, USA - MAR 23, 2004
4.7 AROMA 10/10 APPEARANCE 4/5 TASTE 10/10 PALATE 4/5 OVERALL 19/20
First let me praise Stone Brewery. Although I love their other products(Bastard and such), no two of their beers tastes the same. In that I mean, when I drink a Sam Adams of any rendition, I know I'm drinking Sam Adams. So with the adventurous Stone, there are no limits and every single brew is its' own entity. After having the Stone IPA, which I feel is a premier IPA, Ruination started showing up at my local. Thank God.....pours nice with beautiful golden color, lace throughout the glass, long lasting. The smell, takes over a room...bold hops, hint of malt. The taste is all hops, with a tremendous mouthfeel that's oily on the hops but finishes dryer than a Sahara Caravan, but within the center of all this, is a tinge of fruit (citrus) that not only rolls out the red carpet to the best hop finish I have every had. Some describe the malt at the finish, I sense it in the center with the citrus....pitching a tent for the ever lingering hops. This beer finishes clean, crisp...at 7.7ABV% don't underestimate this demon of an IPA
JFGrind (1881) - Glenside, Pennsylvania, USA - MAR 22, 2004
3.9 AROMA 8/10 APPEARANCE 4/5 TASTE 7/10 PALATE 4/5 OVERALL 16/20
Bottle, Capital Ale House, Richmond, VA. An enjoyable afternoon in a beer bar is made complete when you find an unexpected beer on the menu. Stone Ruination was not a beer I expect to find in Richmond. 22 ounce bomber was $9.95 at the bar. This is a solid 2X IPA that wall of hops mellows with each sip. After a few ounces of consumption the hefty citrus bouquet eases your palate into an unhurried consumption of this hop laden IPA. Very agreeable IPA and I enjoyed sharing it with my old college buddy.
craven5000 (102) - Westville, Indiana, USA - MAR 22, 2004
3.2 AROMA 7/10 APPEARANCE 5/5 TASTE 4/10 PALATE 4/5 OVERALL 12/20
White slightly creamy head. Cloudy, yellow-orange body. Citrus, grapefruit aromas. The flavors were citrus and grapefruit from concentrate. The flavors were both lasting in the mouth and on the mind. I appreciate what it is but it just wasn’t my mug of beer.
IPAndy (120) - minneapolis, Minnesota, USA - MAR 20, 2004
3.7 AROMA 7/10 APPEARANCE 4/5 TASTE 6/10 PALATE 4/5 OVERALL 16/20
UPDATED: JUN 16, 2006 Rerate 6/16/06: Now on tap at the Heorot. Excellent cloudy orange. Hoppy aroma. Taste has some malt character, but I find it unbalanced now, as the finish is just bracingly bitter. Really, not much hop character beyond bitterness. My palate has changed a lot in three years. Just got a bottle for my 21st. Immediately one of the best beers I’ve ever tried. Color is beautiful orange/golden (I poured some in a wine glass and it looked even better.) Grapefruit and hops hops hops, but I was expecting more like hops X 5... great stuff.
rajendra82 (970) - Alpharetta, Georgia, USA - MAR 20, 2004
5 AROMA 10/10 APPEARANCE 5/5 TASTE 10/10 PALATE 5/5 OVERALL 20/20
This beer is the stuff of dreams for any dedicated hop head, such as myself. What a glorious experience indeed. The body is liquid gold, with an inch and a half thick head that crowns atop it. The carbonation in the underlying liquid is picture perfect, and the thick body slows the ascent of the tiny bubbles down noticeably. The head recedes down to a quarter inch in height, but never completely fades. Lacing is excellent as the beer goes into me.
The aroma is like being airdropped into a pine forest. The cascade hops assault the palette with their pine resin like quality from the first sip. The flavors of grapefruit, butterscotch, peach, pear, and sour apple are also evident as let the beer lap my tounge.
On most other IPAs the hop burps are the last thing to enjoy after the beer, but here, they come after just a few sips. The malt backbone is quite solid indeed, but is only there to hold up the hops. The alcohol is in there somewhere, but under the blanket of hops you never taste it, until your head starts spinning. The mouthfeal is creamy, and the drinkability is so good, it is scary.
For me this is the pinnacle of the art of brewing. A beer this good does not come around often. Every beer lover should try this at least once. If you are not a hop head before, this beer may well convert you into one. Thank God, Liquid Solutions ships to Georgia. This beer will be on my shopping list during the next beer run to Chattanooga. And when that dreaded ABV cap is lifted, it will be hard to pick up anything else when I see Ruination on the shelves.