Across the country, the craft beer industry is alive and doing VERY well. More and more, craft-brewed beer (less than 15,000 barrels/yr in production per facility) have made big inroads into “macro” beer sales with names such as Miller-Coors and Budweiser. With less than 20% sales of the entire craft industry selling against the macro brewers in country, this is a big deal. So let’s look at Ballast Point.
On the other side of the country in sunny San Diego, California, the Ballast Point Brewing Company has made its home since 1996. It was Jack White’s dream since his first try at homebrewing in 1992 to own a brewery. Completing his studies at University of California, Davis, to become a master brewer, White quickly increased his knowledge of crafting fine brews. In meager beginnings in the back of a homebrew supply store, Ballast Point was always aiming to grow. Moving to Scripps Ranch, the brewery quickly expanded. They soon needed an even larger space so they added a second location in the San Diego brewery and restaurant in 2013. Today, Ballast Point can be found across the country in 12 oz cans and bottles along with 22 oz ‘bombers.’ Their more than 20 different beers is a testament to their massive success.
This award winning Manta Ray Double IPA isn’t a tremendously hoppy beer, but Ballast Point achieved bittering and flavor against malt profile. Hops are normally added only into the boil to achieve their balance against grain sweetness. Appearance is a brilliant yellow tone with a long-lasting foamy white head. Aromas of grapefruit, pine, mango, and are in the slightly sweet side of balance. With a medium to fuller mouthfeel, this double IPA sure pleases your palate with this 8.5% ABV and 70 IBU (bittering) drink. And the taste is slightly on the sweeter side with caramel malt, floral notes, citrusy tangerine, melon, pine, grapefruit and oranges rounding out the flavor profile. Late bittering is evident that saves this DIPA from becoming something it didn’t intend to be.
Manta is sold to us in 12 oz six packs. All of Ballast Point’s beers are named for varieties of fish found in the nearby Pacific Ocean. Jack was an avid fisherman as well as brewer so it only stands to reason that BP uses ‘catchy’ labels to show off their creations.
BeerAdvocate.com has officially rated Manta Ray as ‘Outstanding’ and awards it a 91 out of 100. Other followers are rating it as high as 5.0 out of 5.0.
You can find Manta Ray DIPA at Case-n-Keg in Meredith as well as other fine beer providers. There’s nothing fishy about Manta Ray, it’s just a great tasting beer that will bring a smile to your face!
Jim MacMillan is the owner of WonByOne Design of Meredith, NH, and is an avid imbiber of craft brews and a home brewer as well. Send him your recommendations and brew news to firstname.lastname@example.org