Aggressively hoppy, this beer is profound for its well hopped bitterness and yet there is more to it than just its overwhelming hops.
Stone advertises this beer as follows.
So called because of the “ruinous” effect on your palate! This massive hop monster has a wonderfully delicious and intensely bitter flavor on a refreshing malt base. One taste and you can easily see why we call this brew “a liquid poem to the glory of the hop!” Those who seek, crave and rejoice in beers with big, bold, bitter character will find true nirvana in Stone Ruination IPA!
This is certainly not an everyday beer. The hop experience is extreme (with a 100+ IBU), but anyone who loves hop bitterness (as I do) should enjoy this beverage.
Chill and pour gently to avoid stirring in the yeast sediment that results from being bottled unfiltered. Pouring with such care yields a glass full of clear medium amber coloured ale and a modest off-white foamy head, very pleasant on the eye.
The nose is greeted with strong hops full of the perfume of citrusy bitterness, almost floral, but also some nicely balanced malty sweetness. That malty sweetness is still detected at the front of the palate, but is overwhelmed by a blast of hops mid-palate resolving to a dry pleasantly bitter finish. Enjoying this medium bodied ale slowly allows for the beverage to reveal more of the malt at the front of the palate over time. From beginning to end, however, there is a dry hoppy finish that lingers long.
This IPA weighs in at 7.7% ABV and an estimated 240 calories for 12 ounces — a good strong ale, but not over the top. Given the hype, I seriously expected it to be less enjoyable than it was. There’s no question that this is designed for the hop-headed IPA lover, but Stone did a fine job of keeping it near the edges of the realm of reasonability. Recommended.