1. Don't miss our 7th annual American Craft Beer Fest featuring 640+ beers from 140+ brewers this May 30 & 31 in Boston, MA! Buy your tickets now!
  2. BeerAdvocate on your phone?! True story. Try the beta now.

Alpha King Pale Ale - Three Floyds Brewing Co. & Brewpub

Alpha King Pale AleAlpha King Pale Ale

Displayed for educational use only; do not reuse.
BA SCORE
95
world-class

4,243 Ratings
THE BROS
93
outstanding

(view ratings)
Ratings: 4243
Reviews: 1646
rAvg: 4.27
pDev: 9.13%


Brewed by:
Three Floyds Brewing Co. & Brewpub visit their website
Indiana, United States

Style | ABV
American Pale Ale (APA) |  6.66% ABV

Availability: Year-round

Notes/Commercial Description:
3 Floyd’s flagship beer, Alpha King is a big American pale ale that pours a deep amber with a creamy head. This ale is brewed with Centennial, Cascade, and Warrior hops giving it an intense citrus aroma and a crisp hoppy finish.

68 IBU

(Beer added by: BeerAdvocate on 07-23-2000)
Beer: Ratings & Reviews
Sort by:  Latest | High | Low | Top Reviewers | Read the Alström Bros Beer Reviews and Beer Ratings of Alpha King Pale Ale Alström Bros
Ratings: 4,243 | Reviews: 1,646 | Show All Ratings:
Photo of sacrelicio
sacrelicio

Minnesota

4.95/5  rDev +15.9%
look: 4 | smell: 5 | taste: 5 | feel: 5 | overall: 5

Juicy, grainy, biscuity malts. Citrusy, sweet fruity hops. Nice color, not much head, but not bad at all. Amazing overall. A great session beer. One of my absolute favorites of any style. Can't believe how much flavor this has for an APA. Almost an IPA, but not quite.

Serving type: bottle

11-30-2010 21:03:30 | More by sacrelicio
Photo of coryking
coryking

Missouri

4.95/5  rDev +15.9%
look: 5 | smell: 5 | taste: 5 | feel: 4.5 | overall: 5

Honestly, one of the best beers I have ever had. I cant believe that i havent reviewed this yet!

Dont know what to say. Beautiful orange/red color in the glass with a big sticky head that lasts forever. Smells like you just zested a grapefruit onto a hint of pine onto a little pumpernickel bread dough. Just fantastic! Taste gives you an upfront malty sweetness from the caramel malts with a hint of maybe some roasted barley and then a slam of fresh American hops. Bitterness perfectly balances everything out to make it perfectly drinkable. Mouthfeel is right under medium and fits perfectly into the balancing act. I love this beer.

One of my top 3 beers since I first tried it 3 years ago...

Serving type: cask

12-10-2010 07:49:09 | More by coryking
Photo of Aircow86
Aircow86

Indiana

4.95/5  rDev +15.9%
look: 4 | smell: 5 | taste: 5 | feel: 5 | overall: 5

Served chilled, poured into a pint glass.

Appearance: Pours a burnt orange color with a finger of head. Head is a little less than I expected, also less lacing than expected.

Smell: Centennial hops, baby. As Centennial is my favorite hop, I deem this a very good thing. Further whiffs reveal strong citrusy, hoppy aromas reminiscent of an IPA.

Taste: Again, up front hop punch. Citrus hop flavors dominate, but give way to a solid backbone of sweet malt. What flavor for an APA.

Mouthfeel: Very creamy, lots of carbonation. A surprisingly full and satisfying mouthfeel for a pale ale.

Overall: This is absolutely one of my all-time favorite beers. Three Floyds works such wonderously hoppy magic that really raises the bar for the style. I could drink this beer every day.

Serving type: bottle

03-30-2011 01:14:40 | More by Aircow86
Photo of Microbrewtaster
Microbrewtaster

Indiana

4.95/5  rDev +15.9%
look: 5 | smell: 5 | taste: 5 | feel: 4.5 | overall: 5

Appearance: Poured a slightly hazy amber color with a small 1 finger head that is a beige color and dissipates at an average rate. The lacing is mild and remains nicely. The color of the stagnant beer is a translucent amber.
Grade: 5/5

Smell: The most distinguished smell is that of Roses. There is also a citrus maybe grapefruit smell. some sweetness honey maybe or some type of sugar. a small amount of hops is detectable in the tail end of the aroma.
Grade: 5/5

Taste: Grapefruit upfront and in your face but not overwhelming magnificently made. a minute amount of bitterness is evident from the hops. Sweet but not abusive, with a hint of maybe Raspberries, Blueberries and maybe blackberries as well. orange a lemon zest may have been added in minute amounts.
Grade: 5/5

Mouthfeel: This is a medium bodied brew with maybe a little more carbonation that i would care for and it is crisp and dry to the finish.
Grade: 4.5/5

Overall: I Think I may have found another beer that can be a relatively inexpensive go to beer for the foreseeable future. I would Recommend this Beer to everyone Alpha king is a must for every Fridge and Stock.
Grade: 5/5

Serving type: Bottle

Serving type: bottle

11-29-2011 04:34:34 | More by Microbrewtaster
Photo of mschofield
mschofield

Massachusetts

4.93/5  rDev +15.5%
look: 4.5 | smell: 5 | taste: 5 | feel: 4.5 | overall: 5

Pours a medium caramel-amber topped with a two finger creamy ivory head, leaves puffy rings of lacing with webs connecting them.
Nice strong citrus hop aroma, pine and floral, clean and crisp, good malt presence in the background.
Citrus, pine, toffee and floral flavor notes, grapefruit and orange. Hoppy but 'mellow'.
Medium-full bodied, crisp and dry, a very good hoppy session APA. Thanks to Qarre for the sample.

Serving type: bottle

03-22-2005 23:34:00 | More by mschofield
Photo of karst
karst

Missouri

4.93/5  rDev +15.5%
look: 4.5 | smell: 5 | taste: 5 | feel: 4.5 | overall: 5

My favorite to drink from the Tap at the Three Floyds brewery. Served a little cool for my taste but with some warming ( I transfered it from the cup to my glass) became bursting with hop aroma and hop flavor that I swear were just picked from the binds. Even with the competing aromas of the brewery in the background, I found Alpha King could dominate them and put them in their place

. The hops were just another level above what I found in the bottled Alpha King. Rich malt flavors that I love are not accidental. Only the best barleys are used at this brewery.

I drank several other 3F's offerings outside in front of the new brewpub that will soon open - finding their delicate flavors and taste easier to appreciate.

Worth a trip to the brewery to taste these beers as Nick Floyd and his associates intended them.

Serving type: on-tap

06-19-2005 06:11:53 | More by karst
Photo of wcudwight
wcudwight

North Carolina

4.93/5  rDev +15.5%
look: 3.5 | smell: 5 | taste: 5 | feel: 5 | overall: 5

Ok, Father's Day is over and the boys are in bed. Now it's time to treat my self. I want something special, flavorful, but not over the top as I want to go to bed soon.
As I look into my fridge I see an Alpha King...perfect!
Appearance looks much more like an IPA than an APA. Maybe it's a double APA. Just Kidding. Oh man, I could just sit here and sniff this for hours. A cornacopia(sp) of aromas. Orange, bannana, grapefruit, mango, and pineapple come to mind. Flavor is the perfect hoppy beer. Tons of hop flavor with out the hop bite. Sure I've had hoppier beers, beers that make your mouth pucker. And I've loved them, but I've never had anything quite like this. Maybe it's super balanced, maybe the amount or type of malt they used. I don't know enough about brewing to distinguish the differences, but I do know this is a damn fine beer, and my taste buds are going crazy and jumping for joy. Feels great in the mouth. Chewy for a light to medium bodied beer. Drinkability? Well I'm going to have to switch it from my gots list to my wants as that was the only one I had. But when I get another one it will go fast.
The perfect beer to cap off a fine father's day.

Serving type: bottle

06-19-2006 04:22:31 | More by wcudwight
Photo of rabsten
rabsten

West Virginia

4.93/5  rDev +15.5%
look: 4.5 | smell: 5 | taste: 5 | feel: 4.5 | overall: 5

Poured from a 12oz bottle into a Schlafly pint glass. Dark amber, orange-tan head, slightly cloudy/hazy. Decent but not spectacular lacing. Pretty much everything I look for in a Pale.

S: Drool-inducing hop headiness. Evergreen and grapefruit-smelling hops and lots of them. The only brew I can think of that's better smelling - off the top of my head - is Troegs Nugget Nectar. And this is real, real close.

Taste. oh, dear me. Everything I want in a Pale. Everything. Hard hit of hops up fromt, mellowing into a spicy middle, finidhing with a bread-like maltiness. Very hoppy for a straight Pale. Hoppier than most IPA's, really. Delicious.

Mouthfeel takes a little ding b/c of the pure up-front strength of the hops. Once that's over and it hits the middle it opens up nicely. Smooth drinking after that.

Drinkability. I could drink this all day, every day.

This just entered by personal HoF. It is going to be a standby for as long as I can get it. I'm going back to Leo's Carry Out next weekend to get more, just to have around.

Bottom line: wow. Believe the hype. It's that good.

Serving type: bottle

06-19-2006 16:45:46 | More by rabsten
Photo of blsfreak
blsfreak

Indiana

4.93/5  rDev +15.5%
look: 4.5 | smell: 5 | taste: 5 | feel: 4.5 | overall: 5

Being a hophead, I love this one. I would not recommend this to the average Bud or Corona drinker, they would not be happy. I do recommend this awesome beer to my friends, I love this one. I have yet to find anything Three Floyd's brews I don't like. They and I seem to share the love of hops and this is by far a great hoppy beer. Highly recommended for the hophead

Serving type: on-tap

09-17-2006 03:54:23 | More by blsfreak
Photo of JamesS
JamesS

Indiana

4.93/5  rDev +15.5%
look: 4.5 | smell: 5 | taste: 5 | feel: 4.5 | overall: 5

This is excellent! Three Floyds has done a great job with their flagship beer. Comes out a nice copper color and has very good head and nice lacing. It has a wonderful scent, very hoppy without being overly bitter. The same for the taste, along with a great caramel taste as well that serves to sweeten it a bit. Went down very easy. It was so good I got a growler of it to take home.

Serving type: on-tap

10-21-2007 02:57:21 | More by JamesS
Photo of 908carson
908carson

Indiana

4.93/5  rDev +15.5%
look: 4.5 | smell: 5 | taste: 5 | feel: 4.5 | overall: 5

Had this beer first at a great pub in indiana... pitchers were on sale that night and i was a happy camper. Finally found it again at a gourmet grocery store in Indianapolis and paid a pretty penny for it. absolutely worth every shiny copper coin. first bottle i opened had almost no carbonation i was quite disappointed... and in a cunning play by the beer gods, i never got to drink that first bottle.

let me pause for a second to tell a quick story... i've now purchased 2 different highly rated pale ales for 10 bucks a six pack. beeradvocate users gave Bell's Two Hearted Ale and Alpha King great reviews... and apparently cursed them in the process. when i purchased Two Hearted Ale a couple months ago, i spilled 2 of the bottles in a matter of an hour. a tragedy! now fast forward to the present when i just spilled a pint glass of semi-uncarbonated Alpha King on my brand new printer.

I told you the Beer Gods didn't want me to drink that sub-par brew. Thank God the next beer i cracked open produced a beautiful head with great lacing... every sip has been a pleasure and i'm gripping the glass with 2 hands this time.

Serving type: bottle

11-04-2007 04:26:52 | More by 908carson
Photo of avaulteriam
avaulteriam

Illinois

4.93/5  rDev +15.5%
look: 4.5 | smell: 5 | taste: 5 | feel: 4.5 | overall: 5

Huge hop presence in the nose, with much to offer in the malt department. Taste is quite sweet with huge hops to make it nice and bitter. I actually used to prefer this from the bottle slightly more, as it is less sweet, but now tap is where it's at. At any rate, an amazing session ale.

Serving type: on-tap

05-29-2008 22:16:32 | More by avaulteriam
Photo of singlebarrel
singlebarrel

South Carolina

4.93/5  rDev +15.5%
look: 4.5 | smell: 5 | taste: 5 | feel: 4.5 | overall: 5

Yep, I will make the drive, whenever possible to Indiana to aquire this pleasure. An assault of pure unadulterated delight on the senses.
Pours a luscious, redish amber, slightly hazy. An inviting white head that disapates to a minimum after a few moments, but that could of been my glass. nice lacing...I can't wait to smell it.
Strangely, smells upfront to me of complex malt and sweetness if that makes any sense. Of course the hops are there as well. I think my lupulin threshold is still on the mend from my recent bout with Bear Republic Mach X... I can't wait to taste it!
What a fantastic balance. the slightly bready malt interingles with the somewhat citrus, and earthy hops on your pallet in a seductive dance of the gods! In my opinion one of, if not the best "Pale Ale" I have had.
A near perfect mouthfeel, enough viscosity to be interesting but not too thick.
I could chuck these back my gullet for a fortnight.

Serving type: bottle

11-19-2009 22:42:54 | More by singlebarrel
Photo of olympuszymurgus
olympuszymurgus

California

4.93/5  rDev +15.5%
look: 4.5 | smell: 5 | taste: 5 | feel: 4.5 | overall: 5

oh, how i've long waited to taste your juices! like the flowing locks of an auburned redhead, she drops into the glass, forming into a lovely finger of head. popping the cap off releases all that is holy, from 2 feet away, I know what is to become of my mouth. the grapefruit, the flowers, the pine, mostly the grapefruit. indeed there is a sweetness as well to this lass, and as she comfortably nuzzles my tongue, the flavors design to leave me in love with a pale ale? silly floyds. anyways, $4 a 12 oz? why not? in fact, i did it again.

Serving type: bottle

12-23-2009 03:27:53 | More by olympuszymurgus
Photo of kaips1
kaips1

Kentucky

4.93/5  rDev +15.5%
look: 4.5 | smell: 5 | taste: 5 | feel: 4.5 | overall: 5

Alpha king on tap into a pint glass

A-nice amber color, white 1 finger head, lots of life non stop bubbles but not crazy 
S-heavenly, lots of citrus and hops
T-same as the taste, if not better
M- lively.wet finish 
O-amazing, get this if you can, no way this is just a pale ale cause it kicks all other pale ale asses

Serving type: on-tap

03-29-2011 22:00:34 | More by kaips1
Photo of richkrull
richkrull

Wisconsin

4.93/5  rDev +15.5%
look: 4.5 | smell: 5 | taste: 5 | feel: 4.5 | overall: 5

Poured a copper color with quite a bit of beige head on it. Lots of citrus and floral hops in the aroma, great smelling beer. Taste is about the same as the smell, good hop flavor with some citrus notes as well. Pretty well balanced beer. Easy to drink, light mouthfeel, this beer went down really smooth. I really really liked this beer a lot. I'll definitely be looking for it in the future.

Serving type: bottle

04-15-2011 17:38:48 | More by richkrull
Photo of SteelersX
SteelersX

New York

4.93/5  rDev +15.5%
look: 4.5 | smell: 5 | taste: 5 | feel: 4.5 | overall: 5

What Amazes me about this beer is the aroma – Being a home brewer I get to know the smell of brewing very well. The mash and the boil and the addition of hops. Smells great! This beer captures all of that and retains it in the beer. This beer is unlike any beer in the world!! A nice grainy flavor and aroma. Nice hoppy flavor This is the best 6% session beer in the world Also considering Three Floyds Crazy High prices on some of the other beers, It’s also a tremendous value. Great on tap also.

This is my deserted island beer!

Serving type: bottle

05-16-2011 16:21:44 | More by SteelersX
Photo of MarkBlackout
MarkBlackout

Indiana

4.93/5  rDev +15.5%
look: 4.5 | smell: 5 | taste: 5 | feel: 4.5 | overall: 5

I love Alpha King. It was one of the first craft beers I really got into when living in the Pilsen neighborhood of Chicago, around 2003. There was a liquor store down the street that had 3-4 craft beers and this was one of them. (Another was a spoiled sixer of Abita Turbodog I bought once. It was AWFUL. Pure soy sauce!). I loved Alpha King from the start, and still do. I drank it when I was at the brewery way back then, before the brewpub existed and it was just a well-lit factory atmosphere. Some old-timers were drinking their Light Lager offering and eating some potato chips they had brought. It ruled. Citrus, caramel malt, a bit sticky, excellent. I had it on tap at MacNiven's during lunch (a liquid lunch in my case).. to celebrate the end of my first semester at grad school. I also had Bell's Sparkling Ale, which I was less impressed by but still enjoyed. Indianapolis is a good beer city. We have lots of good options.

Serving type: on-tap

12-09-2011 01:10:53 | More by MarkBlackout
Photo of DVoors
DVoors

Indiana

4.93/5  rDev +15.5%
look: 5 | smell: 5 | taste: 5 | feel: 4.75 | overall: 4.75

A- thick fluffy head (3 fingers in speigel IPA glass). Great lacing. Copper, almost ruby-red and clear, no haze.

S - classic 3 Floyd's clean, amazingly floral and citric, resinous hop aromas, with slight Carmel malt presence

F- Forward, rich Carmel and sweet bread are balanced out by big hop flavor (Centennial perhaps?).

M - perfect mouth feel for an APA. Smooth and drinkable, not too thick or syrupy

O - Overall, this is a great beer. One of my favorites. big Flavors on both sides of the spectrum, but they manage to find a perfect balance.

Serving type: bottle

01-24-2014 05:24:12 | More by DVoors
Photo of Yetiman420
Yetiman420

Ohio

4.9/5  rDev +14.8%
look: 4 | smell: 5 | taste: 5 | feel: 4.5 | overall: 5

Picked this up tonight in the cold section at a bottle shop in Highland IN and an consuming in my Munster hotel room Dark Lord Day eve.

Poured in a clear 10 oz plastic cup. Not much head. A dark copper color - darker than what one would expect from a pale ale.

Exceptional pale ale aroma - citrus hop aroma and a touch of bread from the malt.

Flavor is clean and fruity with high hop bitterness.

Halfway through, I'm swirling to generate a head. Interesting that the head is a very light tan. A reflection on the darkness of this pale ale. Not to the point of detracting, but certainly worth noting for a pale ale.

One of the best.

Serving type: bottle

04-24-2009 23:06:24 | More by Yetiman420
Photo of tjfontaine
tjfontaine

Minnesota

4.9/5  rDev +14.8%
look: 5 | smell: 4.5 | taste: 5 | feel: 5 | overall: 5

I had this beer on tap several weeks ago at the Comet cafe in Milwaukee. I loved it ... I found it at an offsale in Hudson Wisconsin (chicones) and bought a six .... what a great beer a nice balance between hops and just enough malts. This might become my new go--to beer when I don't feel like an IPA or Imperiall IPA. Others have described the beer well and the nuances - I can highly recommend this beer if you like a great not too hoppy Pale Ale.

Serving type: bottle

04-19-2010 22:14:10 | More by tjfontaine
Photo of Brewganja
Brewganja

Illinois

4.89/5  rDev +14.5%
look: 4.75 | smell: 4.75 | taste: 5 | feel: 5 | overall: 4.75

Hands down one of my favorite beers. It has a strong citrus smell followed by a fresh hoppy scent. It rolls down the palette, intoxicating and bursting with flavor. I have had the opportunity to have a glass from a cask at Three Floyd's brew pub and the flavors are more present than on the tap or in the bottle. Dont expect to like any "lite" beer after this gem.

Serving type: bottle

03-20-2013 04:19:20 | More by Brewganja
Photo of granger10
granger10

Wisconsin

4.88/5  rDev +14.3%
look: 4.5 | smell: 4.5 | taste: 5 | feel: 5 | overall: 5

I have been to the tops of the pale ale mountain after drinking this beer! Looks nice and dark auburn with a creamy head. Good carbonation. Smell is hoppy and earthy with an acidic burn in the nose. Taste brings me those juicy citrus centennial hops. There must be cascade hops in here as well. But there's a sharp acidic bitterness in the finish which makes this beer nearly perfect. Alcohol is wonderful in its bite. Malt is not the strength here but definitely goes well with the hops. There a floral element in the flavor and maybe, just maybe a bit of nuttyness in the bottom. Great, great beer, I need to go get more!

Serving type: bottle

11-27-2004 00:28:01 | More by granger10
Photo of swamiswamu
swamiswamu

Indiana

4.88/5  rDev +14.3%
look: 4.5 | smell: 5 | taste: 5 | feel: 5 | overall: 4.5

I remember the first time I has this beer. Instead of a case of Rhinelander, I started buying a bunch of craft and import singles. One booze fueled night, fate led me to 3F Alpha King. The only thing I remember from the actual taste is thinking they'd infused it with grapefruit. Thus was the beginning of my addiction to hops. At this point hopmarred beers are a dime a dozen, it is the rare one that actually balances it that rates high. This is not an extreme beer. It is just a really great IPA. Seek it out.

Serving type: bottle

02-16-2005 22:14:25 | More by swamiswamu
Photo of ITK4ever
ITK4ever

Maryland

4.88/5  rDev +14.3%
look: 4.5 | smell: 4.5 | taste: 5 | feel: 5 | overall: 5

Pale Ale? Try hoppy IPA. The hops put other PA's to shame. This is one of my fav's, but I don't want to stock it all the time because the artwork on the bottle is a little frightening. If you can get past that, it's one fine PA....probably the best. Typical PA color and head on the pour, but right away you can detect the hops in the nose. Taste is complex and incredible. Good balance of malt and hops at first, then the hops kick in in the finish and you get that citrusy sensation that comes with the stronger IPA's....in fact, close to a Double IPA. Buy this one if you see it!!!

Serving type: bottle

06-07-2005 18:46:27 | More by ITK4ever
Alpha King Pale Ale from Three Floyds Brewing Co. & Brewpub
95 out of 100 based on 4,243 ratings.