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Nelson Sauvin Single Hop IPA - Mikkeller ApS

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Nelson Sauvin Single Hop IPANelson Sauvin Single Hop IPA

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245 Ratings
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(send 'em beer!)
Ratings: 245
Reviews: 177
rAvg: 4.02
pDev: 9.95%
Wants: 12
Gots: 8 | FT: 0
Brewed by:
Mikkeller ApS visit their website

Style | ABV
American IPA |  6.90% ABV

Availability: Limited (brewed once)

Notes & Commercial Description:
Beer added by: ClockworkOrange on 03-14-2009

This beer is retired; no longer brewed.

Brewed at De Proef Brouwerij, Lochristi-Hijfte, Belgium.

Ingredients: Water, malts (pilsner, cara-crystal and munich), hops (nelson sauvin) and yeast.
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Beer: Ratings & Reviews
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Ratings: 245 | Reviews: 177
Photo of ShogoKawada
4.3/5  rDev +7%
look: 4.5 | smell: 4.5 | taste: 4.5 | feel: 4.5 | overall: 3.5

MY first nelson beer that I know of, cool that it's a single hop. $5 or so @ Nikki's. Cap reads 10/3/11, must be a best by date.

A- Incredible head, caramel body. A five finger head in my tulip, although it was a pretty aggressive pour. Off-shite (like white sand) head takes its time.

S- Fresh linen. Hmm. Very hoppy, floral and citrusy. Sweet citrus, though... like a clementine and maybe some white grapes as well.

T- Interesting. Like hops kissed with sugar. Sweet, floral, resiny (but not octane-like or overbearing) and pretty damn good. A bit of a peppery note that's incredibly fleeting, a bit of a chalky, bitter closing that goes very quickly. Hard to capture this taste in words... it's a complex beer for a single-hop brew, that's for sure.

M- Crisp, tasty, a joy to drink. Textbook IPA mouthfeel, creamy head, crisp, bitter, and powerful hops.

D- High, except knocked a bit for price. I could drink this all night long, if I had a pocket of $100 bills. Great beer, though. I'll have to get more of the single hop varieties, very cool.

Photo of FutureCowboy
3.9/5  rDev -3%
look: 4 | smell: 4 | taste: 4.5 | feel: 3 | overall: 3

11.2oz bottle poured into a chilled Goliath tulip. My first foray into this particular hop variety (that I know of at least).

A: Pours a smooth amber/orange, reminiscent of a nice america IPA. Thick, sticky off-white 2-finger head too, not falling very fast at all. Slight haze, nothing major.

S: Very fruity hop aromas. Fellow reviewers are referring to passion fruit, that must be it, almost like a mandarin orange or tangerine to me but I'm not Mr. Fruit Palate.

T: Oh the fruit in this thing! The citrus totally outweighs any pine or grass notes. Comes to a very bitter back end too, little malt in the middle but that fades fast. All hop, as you would expect. Teeny tiny alcohol burn.

M: Interesting, maybe a little resiny but not much. Little chewy, but again only slightly. Not much of a bite, not a super crisp finish, just kind of lingers.

D: Meh. Great use of one hop, well brewed beer, but I wouldn't want more than two in a session.

Not Mr. Fruit Palate, signing off.


Photo of Deuane
4.1/5  rDev +2%
look: 4 | smell: 4 | taste: 4 | feel: 4 | overall: 4.5

Thanks to FooFaa for sharing a bottle of this one.

A-Slightly hazed golden copper with a medium, yellowish tinted, off-white head that reduces to a thin cap and leaves nice lace.

S-Strong floral and perfume hop presence with lighter notes of tropical fruits underlying and a touch of malt sweetness.

T-Floral tropical fruit zing with a backing spicy zip. Supporting caramel malt sweetness is secondary. This one really lets the N.S. hops sing!

M-Medium-light bodied, sharp and crisp. Rather light feeling with pleasant lingering spicy/floral notes and a drying finish.

D-One of my most favorite of hops and this one does not disappoint! Floral fresh with plenty of flavour. Too bad this hop is so limited and rather expensive. It would be nice if more American craft brewers would use it.

Photo of avalon07
4.2/5  rDev +4.5%
look: 4.5 | smell: 4.5 | taste: 4 | feel: 4.5 | overall: 4

A: Poured from a bottle to a pint glass. Had an amber color and a cloudy texture. There was a huge amount of creamy, long-lasting head and some decent lacing.

S: A big aroma of hops (as you'd expect), malt, citrus and other fruits.

T: Like the smell, this one has a big flavor. Hops, a nice understated maltiness, passion fruit and citrus. There's also an underlying earthiness to it that's kind of jarring at first, but grows on you. A complex, tasty beer.

M: A highly carbonated beer with a dry, smooth finish. Light- to medium-bodied.

D: A drinkable, well-made IPA.

Photo of CrazyDavros
3.82/5  rDev -5%
look: 3.5 | smell: 4 | taste: 4 | feel: 3.5 | overall: 3.5

Pours rich orange/amber with a huge head.
Classic nelson sauvin passion-fruit and peach on the nose with some pineapple thrown in as well. Also present is some lovely caramel malt and light peppery phenols.
Taste is dominated by a strong green hoppy bitterness - a little overwhelming at first. Soon enough the malt starts shining through along with lots of sweet passion fruit and peach. The alcohol also shines through, but is somewhat solventy.
Body is lacking, almost watery.
The key factor that let this down was the solventy finish, otherwise this was great.

Photo of Nickls
4.12/5  rDev +2.5%
look: 4 | smell: 4.5 | taste: 4 | feel: 4 | overall: 4

Courtesy of a fine and kind gentleman at Beer Temple in Amsterdam.

Nice finger of slightly off-white head that only dissipates down to a thinner white cap with some noticeable bubbles on top; hazy, dirty coppery orange hue.

Fresh berries and grapefruit aromas; nice hop punch and is very enticing. Some lightly sweet passion fruits, nice touch of malt but it's staying where it should for an hop-forward take on the style. Good bitterness level, and that's what I was hoping for.

Yes, there we go. Nice hoppiness; very berry like (I understand this to be a characteristic of the Nelson hop variety); some light grapefruit as well, but subtle. The sweeter passion fruits only come in for a second, and the light malt backing holds the brew together well, but certainly doesn't shine.

Nice body, with a lighter quality with lively carbonation that livens up things and matches well with the flavor and the style. Wonderfully drinkable, and satiates the hophead in me. Interesting variety of hop, and would love to see this more in other takes on the style. Delicious, and a good deal of complexity for one hop utilized. I'm a big fan of Mikkeller's single hop series, and this one stands up there.

Photo of BuckeyeNation
4.17/5  rDev +3.7%
look: 4 | smell: 4.5 | taste: 4 | feel: 3.5 | overall: 4.5

Autumn leaves orange with a great deal of uprushing carbonation that produced a huge crown of beige colored foam after a gentle pour. The head becomes hugely rocky with meltage and is leaving assorted scraps of suds on the sides of the glass.

The aroma is wonderful for anyone who likes the little green cones. Nelson Sauvin hops are so named because they're supposed to smell and taste like 'crushed gooseberries', which is a characteristic of Sauvignon blanc grapes. Actually, the beer does smell white grape-like, and also has juicy pineapple notes that are tremendous.

This IPA is yet another winner from the brewmasters at Mikkeller. They've hit on a winning combination of malt, water and yeast that goes very well with large amounts of various hops. Anyone wondering if this relatively new variety from New Zealand can carry the flavor load need wonder no longer. It ain't Simcoe good, but it's still might tasty.

The toasted-nutty-earthy malts don't intrude too much on the flavor front, which is as it should be. Specifics include a modest amount of caramel-toffee, orange peel, pineapple, white grapes and pine. It's a similar profile to many American hops... with a slightly different twist to keep things interesting.

Too bad the mouthfeel is a minor letdown. The beer is slightly too buzzy early, then feels flattish once the bubbles fade. Any sort of volume or creaminess would have earned the next highest score.

Carbonation issues might have impacted the taste score in a downward direction. Having said that, Nelson Sauvin Single Hop IPA is good stuff from a brewery that impresses much more often than not. Even though they're too expensive, I plan to pick up a single bottle of as many of these brews as Mikkeller decides to release.

Photo of dfillius
3.7/5  rDev -8%
look: 4 | smell: 4 | taste: 3.5 | feel: 4 | overall: 3.5

Poured into a pint glass
A: Aggressive pour yields 4 fingers of light tan head with stellar retention, too much retention actually. Cloudy dark amber.light brown liquid.
S: So, I read that the hop has grapey/wine qualities? Yeah, I can see that, almost like a riesling or sauvignon blanc. Some bleu cheese. Some alcohol. Pleasant, definitely hoppy.
T: Fruity, very bitter. A little sherry or wet cardboard? :-( Tasty, but maybe just a tad turned.
M: Puckeringly bitter.
D: Okay but not great. Expensive, not my favorite hop aroma or character. No problem finishing one, but I won't have it again.

Photo of brdc
3.61/5  rDev -10.2%
look: 4.5 | smell: 3.5 | taste: 3.5 | feel: 4 | overall: 3.5

Interesting idea, with the same base beer and a single, different hop which allows you to "study" the differences between each hop variety. I just wish they had added some information about the "base beer".

We are trying four on the same night, now moving to Nelson Sauvin and Nuggett.
I cannot say I understand why chosing Nelson Sauvin, which I had to make some research to find out it is a particular variety from New Zealand I had never heard of before.
Both pour a nice, dark golden, Nelson Sauvin hazier.
Very nice, fluffy and long lasting off white head, with very good and long lasting chunky lacing. Very nice presentation.
Toasted, caramel malts form the base for an aroma that is grossly and overpoweringly dominated by grapefruits, along with an unusual bale field smell. It is at times unidimensional.
The aroma on the Nuggett is much more delicate, complex and actually more pleasant, but I do not like grapefruits.
The flavor follows suit; light caramel cookie base, still with a predominantly hoppy taste,
heavily bitter and grapefruity here.
Both are medium bodied.

A very interesting experiment, in a very good beer. I would say I prefer Nuggett very close to Warrior, then Cascade and Sauvin. As far as hops goes in my particular palate, Cascade and Sauvin go a bit too bitter and citrusy, with way too mucvh grapefruit on the Sauvin. Still a fun experiment that I recommend to all beer lovers.

Photo of Vengeance526
4.35/5  rDev +8.2%
look: 4.5 | smell: 4.5 | taste: 4.5 | feel: 4 | overall: 4

Pours a hazy dark orange amber color with a very large off-white head that has nice retention and leaves a little lacing.

Strong aroma of tropical fruit. Lots of pineapple and a little mango upfront. Also present are grapes and peaches in the back.

Taste again starts with the pineapple but is also a bit more malty upfront with a definite caramel touch. Towards the finish, grapefruit comes in along with light peach notes.

Medium body, lightly carbonated with a pretty smooth mouthfeel. Lots of fruit flavors all around, this one turned out extremely enjoyable and they really did a great job of building a quality IPA out of this hop variety. A definite winner in the single hop series.

Photo of dgilks
4.32/5  rDev +7.5%
look: 4.5 | smell: 5 | taste: 4 | feel: 4.5 | overall: 4

Slightly hazy, amber colour. Fluffy, ivory head with very good head retention.

Amazing aroma from these Nelson Sauvin hops. A wonderous vinous grape character teams with kiwi fruit and a hint of slightly tart gooseberry. Wow.

Sweet, crystal malt attack flows into a vinous hoppy mid-palate. Lots of bitterness flowing into the back-palate. The grapes come through again from the aroma but the flavour depth isn't as good as the nose. Medium-dry finish.

Light to medium body with moderately high carbonation. Clean and crisp on the palate.

A decent IPA with lots of great aroma but lacking a bit of flavour. A really nice showcase of the Nelson Sauvin hop and a great idea from Mikkeller.

Photo of BarrelO
4.22/5  rDev +5%
look: 4 | smell: 4.5 | taste: 4 | feel: 4 | overall: 4.5

11.2oz bottle served in a tulip.

Typical IPA color with a very big head. Smell is incredibly fruity-typical hoppy citrus, but also grapes and cranberries. Taste is pleasingly bitter with notes of grass and grapefruit. Also a nice bsackbone of vinous tartness. In, all, this is a very nice showcase for the Nelson Sauvin hop. Based on this, I'd like to see it used more often.

Photo of DoubleJ
3.91/5  rDev -2.7%
look: 4.5 | smell: 3.5 | taste: 4 | feel: 4 | overall: 4

Another version of the Mikkeller single hop IPA series, on to the beer:

Pour a little, get a lot of foam in the glass. The color is a tint darker than orange, more so in the middle of the glass. Some thin whispy lace sticks to the glass, and the head is frosty and retaining well on top, and is very sticky. The aroma is pleasant. I'm thinking mangoes, melons, and canteloupe. Fruit skins adds a...um, interesting note to it all.

Off the bat, I find this single hop IPA to be an intersting concoction. The hoppiness brings to mind a lot of different fruit flavors. I can find grapes, melons, canteloupe. Not bitter at all....okay, maybe a little, but not really. no alcohol is felt until the beer hits the stomach...ahh, relaxing.

Here's a beer I would happily have another of. I'm just not sure I'd pay another $5.99 for another 330 ml bottle immediately. Regardless of price, it's another good beer to the Mikkeller profile.

Photo of ClockworkOrange
3.98/5  rDev -1%
look: 4.5 | smell: 4 | taste: 4 | feel: 3.5 | overall: 4

An 11.2 ounce bottle purchased at Abe's in Bethlehem for around $5. Poured into my nonic Imperial pint glass. Appears a cloudy honey amber color with at least an inch of fluffy, yet dense, off white foam. The ale leaves a pretty impressive lace in it's wake. Nose and flavors consist of grapefruit, dry grape juice, pungent notes, pine, melon, tangerines, some skunk weed, pineapple, some caramel. Quite dry with a body that's a tad thin. Carbonation levels could be a bit tamer as well. Overall, pretty decent stuff. I wouldn't buy another though due to the cost.

Photo of Slatetank
4.3/5  rDev +7%
look: 4 | smell: 4 | taste: 4.5 | feel: 4 | overall: 4.5

Thanks to tenderbranson69 for sharing this bottle, poured chilled into a willybecker.

A - A very hazy dark amber w/ 2.5 fingers of rocky light tan head, thick lace collects on the glass like webbing

S - A strong sweet fruit like candied citrus and honeyed pineapple w/ a hint of mango and papaya w/ a subtle green tea tinge like herbs w/ a gentle grape/lemony acidic nose

M - The feel is delightful and not at all what you would expect considering the fruit filled aroma - not overly sweet. The texture is aided by tingling carbonation and mild juicy fruity notes w/ light sweet and nutty/woody earthy tinges and mild acidity w/ a semi-sweet finish. The astringent aspect is mild w/ alcohol only noted in very slight ways

T - A lot of tropical fruit and white grapeskin flavor like gooseberry w/ a mild pineapple and sweet pine w/ herbs, tea and lychee w/ a hint of mango. The flavor is accented by sweet but not syrupy malt that accompanies a mild pear and pine taste w/ very very light minty clean elements. the taste of citrus is there but enveloped by papaya and passionfruit w/ an alcohol flavor and resinous slightly bitter finish. The finish is semi-dry w/ a refreshing flavor -more than any other single hop ale I have had.

D - I found the taste of this to be like fruit in peculiar fresh hoppy aspects w/ great drinkability and bitter/sweet blend which is intensely packed with Nelson Sauvin hop goodness - juicy and delicious.

Photo of beertooth
3.97/5  rDev -1.2%
look: 3.5 | smell: 4 | taste: 4 | feel: 4 | overall: 4

11.2oz bottle poured into a goblet.

A hazy, juicy apricot orange and amber colored liquid with a huge head that fall into a thin bubbly layer.

The nose is a little weak until it warms. There's some carmel, sparkling grape juice. I'm also picking up on some grassy grapefruit. It's quite interesting and lovely.

The first gulp starts a little bitter with some hop spice, caramel, the sparkling grape juice, grapfruit, grass, so it pretty much follows the nose. It is unique and delicious. The finish is sweeter and a little dry.

The mouthfeel is medium bodied with strong carbonation at first that bordered on spritzy, but dropped slowly.

I was very curious to try this beer due to the Nelson Sauvin hops and I wasn't let down much. I wish I grabbed this a few months ago because I'm sure it would've been much better, but the price tag is a little much which hurts the drinkability factor a bit. A must try if you can find it. I might have to grab some more.

Photo of nickfl
4.12/5  rDev +2.5%
look: 4 | smell: 4.5 | taste: 4 | feel: 4 | overall: 4

A - Pours with a one and a half finger head of brownish-white foam on top of a copper-brown body. Decent retention and moderate lace.

S - Fruity, citrus hops balanced by brown, toasty malt with some caramel and brown sugar. Distinct grapefruit notes, somewhat musty.

T - Spicy grapefruit with moderate bitterness, less harsh than the cascade version. Good malt backbone with caramel and dry toasty malt that combines with the hops in the finish to produce some light tobacco notes.

M - Smooth, moderately thick body, moderate carbonation, and a dry finish.

D - Smooth bitterness and fruity hops. Lots of malt but not enough to balance the sharp hop character. The hops are more complex than the cascade version with a strong grapefruit character that compliments the malt well.

Photo of Halcyondays
4.08/5  rDev +1.5%
look: 4 | smell: 3.5 | taste: 4.5 | feel: 3 | overall: 4.5

11.2 oz. bottle, I haven't really heard a lot about this hop varietal except is was from New Zealand and its flavours were comparable to New Zealand style Sauvignon Blanc which I love, plus I liked the name of the hop so I picked it up,

A: Pours a slightly hazy dark amber with a solid 2 finger frothy off-white head. Very good retention, solid lace.

S: Citrus, more tangerine than grapefruit with a significant amount of amber malt. Medium intensity.

T: Heavy bitter melon initially, but the hops become more complex through the mid-palate - pink grapefruit, mango, cantaloupe rind. I can see the comparison with New Zealand Sauvignon Blanc though it's not as direct as I thought it would be. Nice grassy, earthy finish with an undertone of caramel malt throughout. Almost a wet hop floral sweetness in the flavour.

M: Overcarbonated initally, but once I coaxed it out it was really quite fine. On the lighter bodied side for an IPA, fluffy feel to the carbonation. Long aftertaste, 40 minutes later I can still feel remnants of the hop flavour.

D: I liked this effort a lot from Mikkeller, even at $5.99 a bottle I think it's worth a buy to learn about a new hop and simply to drink a fantastic IPA.

Photo of ZAP
3.59/5  rDev -10.7%
look: 3 | smell: 4 | taste: 3.5 | feel: 3.5 | overall: 3.5

A-Big snowcone like frothy off white head...excessive for my liking.

S-I get a lot of pine along with a strong tobacco/weed element. Very pungent

T-Hops exude a similar impression on the taste....a lot of cannibus and tobacco along with the piney notes...malt seems sweeter with a slight caramel flavor.

M-Pretty hop forward....body is a solid medium..I don't like the charged up texture.

D-This is interesting to try but it doesn't really do a whole lot for me. I'd reach for a lot of IPA's before this one but it is unique.
Thanks to BigHuge for acquiring this hard to find IPA for me.

Photo of ppoitras
3.8/5  rDev -5.5%
look: 4.5 | smell: 4.5 | taste: 3.5 | feel: 3.5 | overall: 3.5

11.2oz bottle purchased as a single at Julio's, Westboro, MA. Cap date is 11/03/11, best by date?

Poured into an imperial pint glass, formed a 2 3/4" beige head over the slightly cloudy copper brew. Pillowy head fades ever-so slowly, with tons of chunky lacing. Aroma is pungeant earthy floral pine. Taste is sweet upfront, with the potent pine and florals coming on in the middle, and driving through the close. Mouthfeel is okay, a little prickly, and drinkability is the same. This hops also doesn't seem to work for me flying solo.

Photo of magictrokini
4.32/5  rDev +7.5%
look: 4 | smell: 4.5 | taste: 4.5 | feel: 4 | overall: 4

Poured more-clear-than-hazy copper with a thick white head. Solid lacing. Pungent pine and citrus aroma. Kind of a hemp/dank smell, more than any other beer I've come across. Slick mouthfeel with a really long finish. Punch in the face strong hop bite. Lots of sour citrus up front, with a longer pine oil/resin back. Hearty. Hard to say what the malt did in the flavor in terms of balance as the hops were that strong. Very, very, very good beer.

Photo of Kraken
3.96/5  rDev -1.5%
look: 5 | smell: 4 | taste: 4 | feel: 4 | overall: 3.5

Reviewed from notes. Consumed 7/17/09

Poured from a 11.2oz bottle into an over sized wine goblet. Fairly firm pour pushes up an inch of off white rocky head. Head exhibits very impressive staying power, and impressive lace. Color is a beautiful dark and cloudy orange, yellowing around the edges.

Nose- Deep pungent citrus. Pine resin runs throughout the nose, with elements of tangerine and pineapple. Impressive.

Palate- Orange, lemon citrus. Tremendous bitterness, lots of pine. Pineapple, almost no sweetness. Very long finish, coats the tongue.

Mouthfeel- Very active, dry.

Drinkability- Showcases an interesting hop profile. As an aspiring home brewer this will help with creating my own recipes. Good although a bit pricey.

Photo of Bighuge
4.3/5  rDev +7%
look: 4.5 | smell: 4.5 | taste: 4.5 | feel: 3.5 | overall: 4

Been looking forward to trying a single hop Nelson Sauvin IPA since I heard it was used in Hopslam (not sure if this is true or not though). Nelson Sauvin is a New Zealand hop that has intrigued me for a year or so now. I knew Sly Fox made a Nelson Sauvin IPA and so does this Denmark brewery, Mikeller. Now where could I find these beers? Not around here. Oh wait. Of course. Discount liquor in Milwaukee.

Looks the part. Quite clear and deep copper in tone. Nice big frothy white head. Lacing is quite full. I really like this aroma. It's not particularly "bright", but this is more along the lines of oily, resiny, pungent and thick with shades of Mary Jane. Flavor is grimy hops up front but they turn a little tropical as well. I get lingering ghostly nuances of pineapple and tangerine. Bitterness is very clean and enjoyable. Hops impart a nice resiny feel to the beer but also some interesting hop flavors, including orange. It's really hard to compare this hop to another, but I'd say the closest thing is probably Columbus with its pungency. Carbonation is just a titch too high. Otherwise, this is very enjoyable.

I'd love to see what Mike Hoops could do with this hop.

Photo of mvasilis
4.11/5  rDev +2.2%
look: 3.5 | smell: 5 | taste: 3.5 | feel: 4 | overall: 4.5

Bought in ölbutikken in Copehagen.

A: Poors with a thick foam head. The beer is quite unckear with a copper-brow color.

S: Beautiful smell, fresh, smells of appels and pears, a hint of citrus.

T: Fruity flavor with a touch og citrus, bitternes kicks in quite hard in the end. Quite sweet.

M: A lot of carbondioxide, the beer grows in the mouth, a pleasent feeling.

Will defenitly drink again, a good IPA.

Photo of ChainGangGuy
4.25/5  rDev +5.7%
look: 4 | smell: 4 | taste: 4.5 | feel: 4.5 | overall: 4

Let's pit the Nelson Sauvin Single Hop versus the Cascade, Nugget, Warrior, and Simcoe versions.

Appearance: Pours out cloudy, burnt orange body with a full inch of lasting, off-white foam.

Smell: Delicately toasted malts with notes of cookies and grains with a distinct waft of white grapes as well as some lightly earthy, herbal hints. I've always appreciated Nelson Sauvin hops for being so different and unique. It's shame I don't see it used too often.

Taste: Lightly toasted base maltiness with a touch of dry caramel and crumbled cookies, though with only a light, restrained amount of sweetness. The Nelson Sauvin hops serve up a faintly tart, fruity white wine flavor with some milder earthy, fresh herb undertones. Moderate bitterness. Finishes dry, crisp, and with some continued bitterness into the aftertaste.

Mouthfeel: Medium-bodied. Medium-plus carbonation.

Drinkability: I certainly enjoy the concept of a single hop series to really enjoy all the various vibrant nuances and characteristics of the particular hop varieties utilized. While this was previously done by Bison, I had no love for the base beer used, so I quickly abandoned the idea of following that series. I'm diggin' this though!

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Nelson Sauvin Single Hop IPA from Mikkeller ApS
90 out of 100 based on 245 ratings.