Point is becoming one of my favorite and most-respected breweries since
they’re willing to try anything and they’re really good at what they
do. Fathom is their newest brew (at least around here): yet another IPL,
but it’s one of the most well-rounded and thorough IPLs I’ve had.
I poured a 12oz can into a mug. It was canned on 5/22/15 and cost $3.80 ($0.32 per ounce).
Appearance: Deep golden color with a mostly clear body; carbonation
visible. Pours to a two-finger, beige, soapy head which mostly
dissipates but leaves some lacing.
Smell: Intense piney/resin scent. Earthy with a touch of spice as well as a minor citrus note.
Taste: If I were drinking this blind I’d probably assume it’s an East
Coast-style IPA since it has all the makings of a traditional entry of
the style. The hops are prominent here (obviously), but in the way
Atlantic breweries traditionally made them with an
earthy/sticky/resiny/dank pine flavor. There’s a strong bitterness here,
but it’s balanced out well by a surprisingly sweet malt presence. Notes
of caramel and a bit of butterscotch or lollipop are noticeable. A bit
of a dry spicy sensation at the apex with a quick bite hoppy bite as it
finishes. Perhaps there’s features to this reminiscent of a strong
doppelbock, though I appreciate the San Diego devotion to hops.
Drinkability: Ballast Point Fathom tastes and drinks like an ale despite
being a lager. The mouthfeel is quite full-bodied with a fairly calm,
slightly viscous texture. The hops linger on the tongue and leave a
resiny aftertaste. At 7% ABV there’s actually a noticeable alcohol
presence in the form of flavor and warmth, though it’s easily tolerable.