Back in may I reviewed the regular Stone IPA and found it to be a smart, drinkable IPA with enough character but without the wallop of bitterness that would steer a non-IPA lover away. I thought that I’d certainly keep a look out for more Stone brews, so when I saw the Ruination I had to grab it.
The bottle, like other Stone brews, is silk screened instead of printed on paper, which makes for a different and interesting bottle. The gold on the brown bottle with green text is a great color palate. The Ruination IPA also features the gargoyle that is so familiar for this brand, but puts its head on the neck of the bottle as well. This may make a great pack to bring to Halloween parties.
I opened and poured it and was deeply satisfied to find that it was that brilliant IPA copper color with a tiny bit of head. The smell of it was absolutely addictive. The hops just beautifully rising up behind the malts, a little tingle in the nose and a bit of inviting sweetness as well. I was certainly not disappointed when I tasted it.
The taste is that of a more refined IPA than the original Stone IPA. If the original IPA is solid, blue-collar workhorse, and this Ruination is the ribbon-winning show horse kept in the stable down the road. This is excellent, refined and not too bitter. I could put this in my top ten of the IPAs that I’ve sampled as the Beer Babe. It lacks that sweet and sometimes fruity taste that something like a 90 Minute or Hoptimus Prime has, but is nevertheless smooth and drinkable. The finish on this one is more carbonation than the rest of the sip (I’m not sure how else to describe that other than that it tingles more at the end than the beginning) but I quite like that about it.
This one will really ruin your tastebuds for whatever you were planning to cook (hence, the name ruination) but I’d say that sampling this beer or its own sake is well worth it.
If you’re an IPA fan and you haven’t sampled what Stone has to say about it, then do yourself a favor and grab one if you see it. I’m surprised at how widespread their distribution is which makes it not too difficult to track down (they’re in Escondido, CA).
All and all I’ll have to agree to the bottle tag line, this is truly“A liquid poem to the glory of the hop.”