Chico King: Pale Ale (Beer Camp Across America) - Sierra Nevada Brewing Co.

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Chico King: Pale Ale (Beer Camp Across America)Chico King: Pale Ale (Beer Camp Across America)

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1,393 Ratings
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Ratings: 1,393
Reviews: 195
rAvg: 3.62
pDev: 10.5%
Wants: 16
Gots: 129 | FT: 2
Brewed by:
Sierra Nevada Brewing Co. visit their website
California, United States

Style | ABV
American Pale Ale (APA) |  6.50% ABV

Availability: Limited (brewed once)

Notes & Commercial Description:
Beer added by: raynmoon on 07-03-2014

This beer is retired; no longer brewed.

3 Floyds has a reputation as the Midwestern kings of alpha (hops), and it seems that one of our beers helped to lure them down the lupulin-paved path. Chico King is a mash-up of our mutual passion for hoppy pale ales and combines a uniquely robust malt body with intense citrusy and fruity new school hop varietals.

3 Floyds marches to the beat of their own (double kick) drum when it comes to collaboration, often partnering with comic book artists, tattoo parlors or heavy metal bands when inspiration strikes. These eclectic beers are coveted throughout the Midwest and some beers, like the legendary Dark Lord Imperial Stout, have spawned something akin to a beer-themed holiday in the brewery’s hometown of Muenster, IN.
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Ratings: 1,393 | Reviews: 195
Reviews by JTomczak:
More User Reviews:
Photo of RaulMondesi
3.06/5  rDev -15.5%
look: 3.5 | smell: 3 | taste: 3 | feel: 3.25 | overall: 3

Umm, uh, yeah... Kind of like a first date where she spends half of it texting: there is not a lot going on here. Chico King (like said hoochie) is just plain, dull, ok in appearance, but just flat overall. The thang is not repulsive, but it doesn't make the main man want to dip his claws into a second date,


Photo of DrDemento456
3.69/5  rDev +1.9%
look: 3.75 | smell: 3.5 | taste: 3.75 | feel: 3.75 | overall: 3.75

Well no longer pale in color with a 1/2 inch of tan colored head. Looks more like a DIPA to me.
Smells fairly malty with light bittering hops and some cracker malt. Smells not as bright and citrus like I expected.
Tastes more balanced than I expected pretty much a higher octane Sierra pale ale with balanced citrus hops, some crystal like malts and some cracker bread finish.
Mouth is good light to medium bodied as I expected. Smooth.

Overall not bad but I will accept the more readily available Sierra pale ale.

Photo of TempeBeerMan
3.27/5  rDev -9.7%

Poured from a bottle into a nonic pint.

A - Pours a mostly clear orange/copper with a smooth, one-finger, off white head with good retention. Really nice sheet of lacing.

S - Moderate strength aroma of caramel malts, spruce, and earthy hops.

T - Taste matches the nose, with piney hops taking center stage. Some hop fruitiness (lemon, lime) in the mid-palate. Slight mineral/metallic taste in the finish. Not very well balanced, as the malts fall way short of standing up to the hop bill.

M - Light bodied, with downright stinging carbonation. Could have used more body and less spritz in my opinion.

O - Not a big fan here. An unbalanced APA with some glaring flaws. One of the weakest of the Beer Camp 12 pack.

Photo of Jadjunk
3.77/5  rDev +4.1%
look: 4 | smell: 3.75 | taste: 3.75 | feel: 3.75 | overall: 3.75

"3 Floyds has a reputation as the Midwestern kings of alpha (hops), and it seems our flagship beer helped lure them down the lupulin-paved path. Chico King is a mash-up of our mutual passion for hoppy pale ales and we suspect you'll find it fit for royalty." Brewed in the style of an American Pale Ale, available in single 12 oz. bottles as part of the Beer Camp Across America 2015 Variety pack and on limited draft.

Poured from a 12 oz. bottle to a Sierra Nevada tulip glass. Served above 54 degrees Fahrenheit.

(Appearance) Pours a foamy frothed head of a cinnamon white color over a mildly cloudy copper body with sparse, thin sediment and no visible carbonation bubbles. Retention is very good and lacing is light and spotty. 4

(Smell) The hop profile kicks in first with piney, spicy, peppery and fruity notes dominating the nose with a moderate bitterness. Underneath the hop front lies a more subtle but equally appealing malt body of light bready and biscuity caramel malts with a modest sweetness and high cleanliness. The earthy, nutty and fruity base of this beer suggests an English yeast-strain, which works well with this beer. Potency is medium. 3.75

(Taste) The malt and hop profiles are seemingly magnified in the flavor, with biscuity, chewy pale and caramel malts generating a filling malt profile and the hop profile covering with an equally profound bitterness, flavors of pine resins, fruit and pepper. Finishes with a lingering fruity and spicy hop profile and a moderate bitterness. 3.75

(Mouthfeel) The texture is slick, lightly chewy and medium dry. Carbonation is modest with a medium frothiness and a softly crisp finish. Body is medium+ for the style, medium overall. Balance is equally sweet to bitter. Alcohol presence is low and there are no off characters to mention. 3.75

(Overall) Chico King is a pale ale that does quite right by its style. A good balance of hop and malts with a solid flavor profile for both. It doesn't need to rely on the gimmicks of west coast and brighter hops, making the Alpha a more uncommon but equally appreciated hop choice. Overall Chico King is a very enjoyable pale ale and one of the better beers of the variety pack. 3.75

Sierra Nevada Brewing Co.'s
Chico King Pale Ale (With 3 Floyds Brewing Co.)

Photo of oberon
3.46/5  rDev -4.4%
look: 4 | smell: 3.5 | taste: 3.25 | feel: 3.75 | overall: 3.5

Pours into a standard pint glass a clear burnt orange with a half finger white head that left a few splashes of lace as it settled.Aromas of mild fruity hops and caramel malts,there is light resin to them.Flavors are fruity but with not much pine resin or bitterness,a caramel/biscuit malt backbone more than stands up to the hops it might be the main flavor component.I expected a little more here,it's not terrible by any means maybe just a little lackluster.

Photo of lordofthewiens
4/5  rDev +10.5%
look: 4 | smell: 4 | taste: 4 | feel: 4 | overall: 4

In my pint glass this beer was copper colored with a good sized off-white head. There was a good amount of lace.

Nice citrus aroma, as well as a fresh, floral scent. Some sweetness to the aroma as well.

Taste of grapefruit and orange. Still floral. A bready background.

Hoppy mouthfeel, but subtle.

I was expecting more hops, but this turned out well.

Photo of Beaver13
2.32/5  rDev -35.9%
look: 4 | smell: 2 | taste: 2 | feel: 4 | overall: 2

12 oz bottle. Pours clear light copper amber with a hug rocky off white head that retains well and laces the glass.

The aroma is biscuity nutty malts and grassy hops and a little fruit.

The flavor is sweet biscuity crystal malt with a little fruit and grassy floral hops. There's a bit of a bad homebrew twang to it. The mouthfeel is medium to full bodied with slightly prickly carbonation.

Overall, my least favorite beer camp so far. Hoppy unexciting amber.

Photo of barhoc11
3.36/5  rDev -7.2%
look: 3.75 | smell: 2.75 | taste: 3.5 | feel: 3.75 | overall: 3.5

A: Dark for a pale ale, has a faint red tint

S: Nothing here, at all

T: Sweet and full, not bad but almost not what I would consider a pale ale. This is high on the abv for a pale ale as well so there are much better options at this point

M: Nice and full, makes the beer better than it actually is

O: This is not a bad beer at all, its just not a great beer coming from Three Floyds. Pale ales are pretty standard and this one is something I could drink more often

Photo of Beerswag
3.67/5  rDev +1.4%
look: 4.25 | smell: 3.5 | taste: 3.75 | feel: 3.25 | overall: 3.75

bottle pour into mini pilsner glass. smell fruity, orange peel, grapefruit, carmel. taste is slightly sweet, fruits such as mango, strawberry, citrus, and carmel notes. Some spice essence coming through the nose, with it's complexity, and richness. mouthfeel is medium bodied. I could see this one paring nice with mild spice dishes, such as kabob, and mild smokey meats, and cheeses.

Photo of bsp77
3.84/5  rDev +6.1%
look: 4 | smell: 3.75 | taste: 4 | feel: 3.5 | overall: 3.75

Serving glass: Poured from bottle into Pint glass.

Appearance: Robust amber-orange with good sized off-white head and some light lacing.

Smell: Caramel and citrus mostly. Simple but effective.

Taste: Big caramel malt body on this one. The hops are varied and seemingly fantastic, with notes of grapefruit, orange, pine, spice and tropical notes. However, the hops and bitterness are kept in check by the malt body.

Feel: Full bodied with moderate carbonation and a nice dry finish. It is basically a great mouthfeel, but not for this beer. Too full bodied.

Overall: This was almost a first rate Pale Ale. I am not sure why this is so full bodied with such strong malts. What I can taste of the hops is outstanding, and while I am okay with a balanced Pale Ale, I think this is a little out of whack on the malty side. Still, quite delicious.

Photo of pat61
4.25/5  rDev +17.4%

Nose: citrus and biscuit
Pours: Brilliant orange tinted amber under a 2" rocky off-white head, very fine bead, lacy.
Palate: initially citrusy and lemony with a touch of sweetness with a dry bitter finish. The bitterness is citrusy, rounded and not harsh. A rich malt backbone allows the hops to shine while balancing the rough edges.
Medium body and carbonation.

Photo of PSU_Mike
3.36/5  rDev -7.2%
look: 3.75 | smell: 3.25 | taste: 3.25 | feel: 4 | overall: 3.25

Bottle poured into an IPA glass

A - Pours a light amber color with a big three finger head. Nice lacing, no legs, white head with tiny bubbles. A little too dark for a pale ale imo.

S - Grassy english hops. A little earthy and sweet at the end. Caramel malt maybe?

T - Grass, earthy on the start. Mid-palate turns to a little pine. Sweet malt on the finish. Kind of like an English IPA.

M - Clean with a very low bitterness on the finish. Not bad at all.

O - If they billed this as an English IPA, I would score it higher. But as a pale ale, it falls short. The hop bill is a little dates and I'm not a big fan of sweeter crystal or caramel malt in pales.

Photo of MattyG85
4.21/5  rDev +16.3%

On tap at the Muddy Pig in St. Paul, MN. 10 oz. pour served in a chalice.

Appearance: Color is a deep amber orange. Moderate amount of bubbles and about two fingers of off white head which slowly settle into a thin patchy layer. Leaves some good lacing.

Smell: An earthy and juicy balance of hops and sweet malt with hints of citrus and caramel. Citrus hops with hints of orange, lemon, grapefruit, mango, tangerine, and melon. Earthy hop hints of grass and some pine resin. Lots of sweet malt with a scent of caramel, grains, biscuit, cracker, and yeast. Leans a bit to the hoppier side. A pretty solid aroma.

Taste: Like it smells, a nicely juicy, earthy, and sweet balancd APA taste with good notes of citrus and caramel. Upfront citrus hop presence with notes of grapefruit, orange, lemon, tangerine, mango, and melon. Floral and earthy hops with notes of grass and some pine resin. Solid backing of sweet malt with notes of caramel, biscuit, grains, yeast, and cracker. A pretty good taste.

Mouthfeel: Medium bodied with a moderate amount of carbonation. Crisp, juicy, and very smooth with a drying finish.

Overall: A very solid take on an American Pale Ale. Good balance of citrus and earthy hops with a solid caramel malt presence.

Photo of WVbeergeek
4/5  rDev +10.5%
look: 4 | smell: 4 | taste: 4 | feel: 4 | overall: 4

As I inspect the bottle the first thing I notice is the date on the back of the bottled packaged on 5/15/14, I guess it took some time for Pittsburgh market to get this one. Looks great glowing copper orange body with a big khaki tan head, great billowing foam looks like bread rising. It presents with even lacing and great retention, no complaints at the look of the brew.

Aroma has some crushed aspirin, citric rind, dull earthy pine notes evident green hops flare out here with a subtle biscuit/bread malt presence. Honestly it’s probably the age factor the hop nose just seems dulled a bit, not as explosive as I would expect from the Chico King a collab with 3F’s. I will keep in mind there’s 45 IBUs.

Flavor herbal mint hops, citric rind bitter pith in the back end, more of that crushed aspirin sensation on the back of the palate. Striking herbal pine bitterness minimal malt presence just enough breadiness to make it doable, lasting bitter citrus rind lingers and lingers. Lacks the kind of hop profile I know both breweries are capable of, a bit of a let down.

Mouthfeel is rounded out with enough malt to not completely dry it out, but a beautiful lingering hop bitterness is left between each sip. Great bready malt layers give nice body and hop oils/resins are definitely slick and sticky lubricating things quite nicely. Carbonation is mellow and carries this medium bodied hoppy pale ale quite well.

Overall, I like it a lot, I just like my big hoppy beers within weeks of the package date not months. Despite early signs of aging effecting the beer it’s still super well made, but nothing like any of the hoppy offerings from 3F’s including their trademark Alpha King Pale Ale.

Photo of chinchill
3.72/5  rDev +2.8%
look: 3.75 | smell: 3.5 | taste: 3.75 | feel: 4 | overall: 3.75

12 oz bottle dated 15 May 2014 served in a snifter.

Pours dark amber with a good head and decent lacing. This is both dark and reddish for style. The aroma follows, with a substantial malt base to accompany the hops. Alcohol esters are also clearly present.

Flavor: The generous malt load nicely complements, and partly tames, the substantial hop load.

Feel: spot on medium body and carbonation.

O: a fine APA worth seeking out, if not quite as stellar (or hoppy) as FFF Alpha King.

Photo of timontheroad
3.43/5  rDev -5.2%
look: 3.75 | smell: 3.25 | taste: 3.5 | feel: 3.25 | overall: 3.5

Pours a nice fairly clear light amber color. One inch fluffy tan head, good retention. Aroma is really yeasty, like the smell of rising bread dough. I get just a bit of piney notes as well. Flavor is pretty subdued, with just a bit of malty sweetness, some faint citrus flavors and a bit of piney bitterness on the back end. Mouthfeel was kinda thin, not much going on there. Overall, this beer was a little underwhelming, considering its pedigree.

Photo of Auraan
3.58/5  rDev -1.1%
look: 4 | smell: 3.5 | taste: 3.5 | feel: 4 | overall: 3.5

Poured a very nice deep, cloudy amber with three fingers of fluffy white head that slowly receded to a cap of white leaving copious amounts of lacing down the glass. A very nice looking pale ale. Scents of yeasty white bread at first, giving way to tropical fruit, mostly light pineapple-like aromas, orange flesh, orange peel, a bit of overripe fruit, and some pale malt in the background. The overall impression of the aroma is light, but layered with fruity and malty aromas dominating. Nice, though not as good as expected. Flavor begins with a nice balanced hop bitterness with notes of pine resin, toasty and sweet pale malt flavors, and citrus peel. The middle opens with more citrus peel flavors, some floral and earthy hop notes, hints of pine resin and a bit of toasted malt. Finish is medium-dry with notes of bitter grapefruit and citrus peel, hints of pine resin, some floral and earthy hop flavors and a hint of toasted malt with a very light alcohol presence. A nice hoppy pale ale flavor profile with an abundance of fruity and resinous flavors, leaning more towards citrus peel and pine resin, but balanced with some faint floral and earthy flavors and a bit of malt. Quite nice, though a bit one note overall. Mouthfeel is medium-light bodied with low carbonation, and a smooth, slightly slick feel. Quite easy to drink and very pleasant. Overall this is a decent pale ale that reminds me a great deal of Sierra Nevada's classic. The 3 Floyds influence is hard to discern however and overall it does just feel like a slightly different take on SNPA.

Photo of azorie
4.25/5  rDev +17.4%
look: 4 | smell: 4 | taste: 4.5 | feel: 4 | overall: 4.25

a: nice huge creamy head over 1.5 inches on hard pour into mug. slightly off white in color. slightly cloudy body, deep cooper tan in color. nothing pale here, but that is just a name. hehe.

s: very mild hop nose. strangely mild. straw and caramel malt nose. very biscuit like yeast nose.
very balanced for a pale ale. hops are there, but in the background, kind of hard to describe really.
though I am trying to. rose like flower hop as it really get warm. about all I can get out of it.
I admit its after the first beer camp beer. but limited amount of beer, got to make the best of it.

T: very nice balanced pale ale. really outstanding malt to hop blend. you got the peanut like nut flavor, very complex bread, straw, hay mix. yeast is undetectable to me. I know its there, but I think it got to neutral so well its hard to express. the hops are wonderful not too strong, just right.
Loving this one.

m: medium carbonation. medium body, very slight biter finish.

o: OUTSTANDING beer. I think I could drink more PA if they are all this good.
borders on one of the best ever, but would have to drink more to be fair.

So review is subject to review.

Photo of TheSixthRing
3.83/5  rDev +5.8%
look: 4.5 | smell: 3.25 | taste: 4 | feel: 4.25 | overall: 3.75

Appearance - Pours relatively clear and pure copper in color, with an eggshell head that sits near 2 fingers in width. Good retention results in a thick, almost chunky layer of surface suds with great build-up around the edges. Thick ring of lace clings to the glass like nobody's business.

Smell - Mild aroma. Touches of caramel, floral hop and a faint citrus.

Taste - A bit more flavor than the smell leads on. Shows nice complexity and balance. Caramel, red apple, touches of earth, floral qualities and a mellow citrus that peaks through in the finish, giving a very mild grapefruit pith aftertaste.

Mouthfeel - Medium in body with a nice, soft level of carbonation. Velvety and slick. Goes down stupid smooth.

Overall - Pretty good ale, though drinks closer to a mildly hoppy red than a traditional pale. Of course, there's nothing traditional about 3 Floyds, is there?

Photo of secondtooth
3.95/5  rDev +9.1%
look: 4.25 | smell: 4.25 | taste: 3.75 | feel: 3.75 | overall: 4

Bottled 5/15/14, so 90 days old before reaching my refrigerator.

Pours a deep amber, with a huge, frothy head. Beautiful and thick spiderweb lace.

Nose is pine hops, with a touch of tropical notes. Very nice!

Taste is bitter and hoppy, but with an unexpected caramel malt foundation, as well. I get a hint, somehow, too, of a rye-like spice underneath it all. Overall, not a bad pale ale, but one I'd bet would be vastly different if tasted a bit fresher.

Photo of Roguer
3.72/5  rDev +2.8%
look: 3.75 | smell: 3.5 | taste: 3.75 | feel: 4 | overall: 3.75

Pours a strong, off-white head with very good retention. Brew is a bright, orange-tinged copper, pretty clear with little action. Leaves behind thin lines of lacing sliding down the glass.

Pine-forward aroma with a bit of flowery sweetness. Significant amount of caramel malt, likely stronger due to age.

Surprisingly light and delicate flavor; the hops may be faded due to time, but the beer does not taste old. Wild flower honey, very light biscuit, some pine resin, a bit of juicy fruit (tough to pin down; almost like a watery nectarine), and a smooth toffee/caramel finish. This is surprisingly quite good.

Light and refreshing feel, with a medium and sticky finish. Not super lively, but impressively drinkable. Slight sting; no alcohol.

This is actually a very tasty APA. It doesn't live up to the promise heralded by two of the premier APA brewers on the planet (SN Pale Ale; FFF Zombie Dust), but it's a very, very drinkable and crushable summer drink. People looking for an absolute hop bomb should look somewhere else.

Photo of Fatehunter
3.6/5  rDev -0.6%

Pours a finger of head on a clear dark straw colored body.
The aroma has a pine smell with lots of caramel malt. Great depth.
The taste has great pine and lemon bitterness beginning to end with some malt sweetness in the middle to break it up nicely.
The texture is crisp.
Nice and enjoyable.

Photo of Alieniloquium
3/5  rDev -17.1%

On tap at Bx Beer Depot. Served in a taster.

Appearance - Deep orange body. Medium white head. Some lacing.

Smell - Floral hops. Fruity and caramel malt.

Taste - Caramel malt. Fruity flavors. Toasty malt. And then mote fruity flavors. Mild bitterness finish.

Mouthfeel - Medium body. Mild bitterness. Medium low carbonation

Overall - Quite dull. Unexciting and almost nonexistent hop flavor. Just malty.

Photo of sjones5045
3.93/5  rDev +8.6%
look: 3.75 | smell: 3.75 | taste: 4 | feel: 4 | overall: 4

Appearance, is copper in color and a nice white head but thin lace. Smell, is a bit of fruit upfront, but a little boozy hints come through kind of taking out any other smell. The taste is pretty good. It has a citrus hop taste upfront but fades fast into a sweet ending. As I kept drinking it seemed like the booze came to the forefront.

Overall, pretty good. I'd buy this if it was a permanent offering. Worth a try. Not sure why the low scores to be honest.

Photo of HalfFull
3.88/5  rDev +7.2%

Beer camp release poured into a globe glass from a 12 oz. bottle. Pours a light copper with a rich cap of lingering foam.

Aroma of cascade hops makes this smell like a super version of SNPA on the surface, along with a touch of onion/shallot with warming. Taste follows but is a bit drier than expected and with a spicy hop finish. Offers a full yet dry finish. Firmly carbonated, smooth and creamy in texture. ABV is well hidden even with the dryness giving the beer a slightly chalky feel. Old school with some new hops.

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Chico King: Pale Ale (Beer Camp Across America) from Sierra Nevada Brewing Co.
82 out of 100 based on 1,393 ratings.