10 Best IPA Beer For People Who Don’t Typically Like Beer Today Top Reviews

10 Best IPA Beer For People Who Don’t Typically Like Beer

India Pale Ale, or IPA beer, is one of the most popular styles of craft beer in America today. Surprisingly, it's also one of the most divisive. The bitterness of the hops in IPA beer is one of the most appealing aspects of the brew for many, but a huge turnoff for others. That might leave you thinking IPA beer is one of the worse ways to introduce beer newcomers to your favorite beverage, but there are IPAs out there that can make a great introduction to beer as a beverage with infinite variations. Read on to learn about ten great IPA beers that even non-beer drinkers might love.

 

IPA Beer FAQ


1. What Is IPA Beer?

India pale ale is best known for the bitter, floral flavors imparted to it by its abundance of hops. Rather than India, IPA beer hails from England. The name's origins? When India was under British rule, Brits in the country were disappointed to learn that the weather was too hot for brewing beer. Even worse, perishable beers couldn't survive the journey to India. Hence, IPA was born. Its higher alcohol content and the large dose of hops both act as preservatives, and the IPA flavor profile eventually came to be prized as well.

 

2. Is It Always Bitter?

IPA beers have a wide range of flavor profiles. Some are very bitter while others lean more heavily into the floral notes, becoming almost dank in the process. Some are infused with citrus, adding a touch of sweetness to counteract the hops. Others use malt to undercut the hops' bitterness and create a refreshingly balanced beverage.


3. How Much Alcohol Does an IPA Have?

If you're used to drinking lagers, an IPA beer might surprise you with its alcohol content. Most of these beers have an alcohol by volume (ABV) around at least 5%, while some run much higher. Some specialty IPA beers, particularly those labeled double IPAs, can top 9 or 10% ABV.

 

How We Reviewed India Pale Ales

We selected these beers based not on which were the best representatives of IPA beer as a style, but on which ones had great taste and were approachable enough for even novice beer drinkers to enjoy. These aren't the most bitter and dank of IPAs, and purists might even turn their noses up at some of them. If, however, you're trying to introduce a friend to the wide world of IPA beer, these beers are fantastic starting points.

 

Overall Price Range of IPA Beers

Craft beers vary widely in price for a number of reasons. Where they're brewed, where they're sold, how far they travel, and which retailer you buy from can all play a big role in the cost. Some breweries sell 16-ounce cans for $10 to $13 for a 4-pack, while others only sell larger 500mL bottles. Local and larger-batch IPAs may sell for $12 to $15 per 6-pack.

 

What We Reviewed

  • Allagash Brewing Company's White
  • Founders All Day IPA
  • General Braddock’s IPA
  • Insufficient Clearance
  • Breakside Brewery's Passionfruit Sour
  • Diamond Dust
  • 21st Amendment Down To Earth
  • Alchemist Heady Topper
  • Gold Digger
  • Lawson’s Sip of Sunshine

Allagash Brewing Company's White

Allagash Brewing Company's White

Features

Allagash Brewing Company's White is not technically an IPA, but it contains some elements that might help newcomers warm up to IPA. Its citrus notes are fragrant and pleasing, and the coriander adds a nice bit of spice. This is actually a Belgian witbier, or wheat beer, that serves as a gateway to some of the sweeter IPA beers on this list. It has an ABV of 5.2%.

Pros 

  • Pleasing mix of citrus and spice
  • Citrus elements provide a good gateway to true IPA flavors

 Cons

  • Fairly expensive
  • May not provide all the flavors of a more intricate dish

Price

Allagash Brewing Company's White beer is available from select retailers for around $10 or $11 for a 4-pack. That's two fewer beverages than you can get for a comparable price if you choose some of the other beers on this list, making this an expensive option.

Founders All Day IPA

Founders All Day IPA

Features

While we definitely do not recommend indulging in it all day, Founders All Day IPA is smooth and mild enough to make that a tempting prospect. At 4.7% ABV, this IPA beer balances its hops with the mildness of malt, taking off the bitter edge to create an extremely drinkable and refreshing beer. If you want to try a true IPA but are still nervous about all the hops and bitterness, this is a great starting point. It even comes in large 15-can packs at a great price point.

Pros 

  • Refreshing and drinkable
  • Not too bitter for IPA newcomers
  • Great price for a 15-pack

 Cons

  • Not for those who prefer high-ABV, stiffer-tasting IPA beers

Price

Founders All Day IPA is available from some retailers for around $16 for a 15-pack of cans..

General Braddock's IPA

General Braddock's IPA

Features

General Braddock's IPA comes from The Brew Gentlemen in Pennsylvania, a brewing team famous for their hop-forward New England-style ales. This IPA will show you why. With notes of pineapple, orange, and even a touch of garlic, it's one seriously aromatic beer with a smooth, sweet finish. This beer clocks in at 6.8% ABV, which is in the center of the perfect range for a high-quality craft IPA.

Pros 

  • Sweet finish won't put off those who don't love hops
  • Unique and aromatic

 Cons

  • Difficult to find in many areas of the country

Price

The Brew Gentlemen operate a small outfit, and General Braddock's IPA can be difficult to track down for purchase online. It is available in bars and pubs in many major cities though, so scan those menus for this one! If you happen by the Brew Gentlemen brewery in Pennsylvania, you can pick up a 2-liter bottle of this beer for just $10.

Insufficient Clearance

Insufficient Clearance

Features

Insufficient Clearance is an IPA beer from Sketchbook Brewing Co. in Evanston, Illinois, which lies just north of Chicago. It's infused with tropical flavors like mango, guava, and pineapple, while a wheatgrass base keeps the fruit flavors from becoming too overpowering. There is a bit of bitterness in the finish, but it's well-balanced by the fruit flavors and should make for a great IPA for first-timers. This beer has an ABV of 5%, making it a great starting point for those who don't drink much beer. Unfortunately, this beer is only available in select markets. If you live in Chicago, you should be able to track it down easily.

Pros 

  • Great balance of tropical flavors and bitterness
  • 5% ABV makes it a good choice for novice beer drinkers

 Cons

  • Expensive
  • Limited market availability

Price

If you can track it down, Insufficient Clearance can be purchased for around $13 per 4-pack. It is not yet available nationwide, though.

Breakside Brewery's Passionfruit Sour

Breakside Brewery's Passionfruit Sour

Features

Breakside Brewery's Passionfruit Sour ale is another entry on this list that isn't technically an IPA, but it has some of the same intense flavors without the full impact of bitterness. This makes it a great entry into the extended, friendly world of IPA beers. Sours aren't for everyone, but those who like to pucker up will love this Berliner weisse style beer for its tart yet tropical flavor. This beer also sits at 5% ABV, which makes it a good sipping beer for those who aren't big beer drinkers.

Pros 

  • Great mix of tropical and sour flavors
  • 5% ABV makes it perfect for sipping

 Cons

  • Not widely available
  • Mostly available in large bottles

Price

While Breakside Brewery's Passionfruit Sour isn't available in all markets, it sells for around $6 or $7 for a 22-ounce bottle if you can track it down.

Diamond Dust

Diamond Dust

Features

Diamond Dust comes from San Diego's Pure Project Brewing, a unique outfit that gives startup craft brewers a turnkey brewery to use to bring their visions to life. Diamond Dust shows what it's possible to produce with this model. This brew packs blood orange and papaya flavors along with a hint of fresh-cut grass for a juicy flavor that has some hoppy bitterness running underneath. It's bold, but the fruit flavors make Diamond Dust an approachable IPA beer for newcomers. At 6.7% ABV, this has the alcohol content of a great craft IPA, and it packs that punch.

Pros 

  • Unique blend of fruity and bitter flavors

 Cons

  • Bold flavor might scare off newcomers to beer
  • Hard to find

Price

Pure Project is a unique, small craft brewing operation, and this beer can be tough to track down outside of San Diego. Pure Project also often rotates the beers they brew, so check out their website to find out when this one will be available.

21st Amendment Down To Earth

21st Amendment Down To Earth

Features

21st Amendment's Down to Earth IPA hails from San Francisco. Coming in at 4.4% ABV, his highly drinkable IPA beer brings the expected hops and citrus flavors without the bitterness. In that way, it's a close cousin to Founder's All Day IPA, getting most of its flavor from malts and dry hopping. It's light, with a clean finish, making this IPA a great summer afternoon beer.

Pros 

  • Light and refreshing
  • Not too heavy on hops

 Cons

  • Low 4.4% ABV

Price

21st Amendment is another brewery whose offerings can be difficult to track down in some markets, but this IPA can be enjoyed for around $10 or $11 per six-pack of cans if available near you.

Alchemist Heady Topper

Alchemist Heady Topper

Features

Alchemist Heady Topper is an East Coast hazy IPA that's unfiltered, unpasteurized, and packed with notes of citrus and grass that compliment its hops. Its 8% ABV means you'll want to take it easy as you drink it. This bittersweet beer is only available in select areas of the country, in part due to its unpasteurized nature.

Pros 

  • One of the original hazy IPAs
  • Classic IPA flavor without too much bitterness

 Cons

  • Still hop-forward, which means it may not appeal to those who don't like IPA beers overall
  • Hard to hunt down in many areas of the country

Price

If you live in one of the markets where Heady Topper is available, you'll be able to find it for about $10 for a four-pack of 16-ounce cans.

Gold Digger

Gold Digger beer

Features

Gold Digger comes from Auburn Alehouse in California, and its mix of passion fruit, sweet onion, and pine make for a fantastic collection of flavors followed by a dry finish. This is another IPA that leans toward tropical fruit flavors, although this one's piney undertones allow more traditional IPA flavors to sneak in around the edges. This is a great transitional beer; that is, after trying milder IPA beers like All Day IPA, this one will move you closer to the ultra-hoppy varieties. At 6.4% ABV, you can safely sip down a couple of Gold Diggers if you love the flavor.

Pros 

  • Tropical flavors with piney IPA undertones
  • Good way to ease non-IPA drinkers into the world of IPA beers

 Cons

  • Fans of milder flavors may be overwhelmed
  • Not widely available

Price

If you can track it down, Gold Digger is available in 500ml bottles for around $5 each.

Lawson’s Sip of Sunshine

Lawson’s Sip of Sunshine

Features

Lawson's Sip of Sunshine is a great craft IPA: it's juicy, hoppy, and packed with tropical citrus flavors. At 8% ABV, it's likely to leave you feeling energized, too. Hailing from Vermont, this beer is (most unfortunately) only widely available on the East Coast.

Pros 

  • Robust, vibrant IPA flavor

 Cons

  • Won't convert those who don't care for IPA beer
  • Only available on the East Coast

Price

Available mostly on the East Coast, Sip of Sunshine can be had for about $13 for a 4-pack of 16-ounce cans.

The Verdict


IPAs aren't for everyone, but if you or a friend is trying to get into the craft beer scene, there are plenty of ways to learn to appreciate the many virtues of a good IPA. We recommend starting with a mild, hop-light beer like Founder's All Day IPA before moving on to the stronger, hoppier IPA beers. If you need to ease someone gradually into the whole concept of an IPA, Allagash's White and Breakside Brewery's Passionfruit Sour both offer big flavor with notes that fit cozily alongside many of the IPAs on this list.

 

From those great choices, you can work your way up through the hoppier beers and, once you're feeling ready, try out Lawson's Sip of Sunshine or Alchemist Heady Topper for a hop-forward IPA experience.

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