American Pale Ale Ballast Point Brewing Company


Grunion, an American Pale Ale by Ballast Point Brewing Company

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Grunion is an American Pale Ale brewed by Ballast Point Brewing Company, and for the purposes of this craft beer review, was served in a tulip pint glass from a can.


The pale pours a crystal clear burnt orange with a towering cap of frothy off-white foam that shows good retention. An aggressive pour yields the best head. During reduction, the head collapses to a small, soapy dome and a lovely smattering of lace of clings to the glass.


The aroma is quite pleasant with bright scent of orange citrus and pine needles. A hint of toasted bread appears as the beer warms.


Hop forward palate begins with a mild floral hop taste and transitions to biting citrus notes of grapefruit and lemon. Caramel sweetly mellows the bitterness before finishing dryly with a lingering herbal taste of hop resin. A malty base of toasty bread sweetened with a hint of caramel ties the palate together.


The feel is spot on for the style and has a medium body and moderate carbonation.


Grunion has been the recipient of numerous awards, and after experiencing it personally, it’s easy to understand why. The brew showcases a lovely blend of west-coast hoppiness and toasty, bready malt.


The Grunion pale ale originated as a Ballast Point employee-only homebrewing contest.

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About the American Pale Ale

The American Pale Ale is a hop-forward brew that has less alcohol strength, is less bitter and is more approachable than the American IPA. Its clean and balanced palate makes use of New World or American hop varietals. Prior to the explosion of the American IPA, the American Pale Ale was the most popular craft beer style in the United States.