Alpha King - 3 Floyds Brewing Co.

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Alpha KingAlpha King

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BA SCORE
95
world-class

1,717 Reviews
THE BROS
94
outstanding

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Reviews: 1,717
Hads: 5,797
rAvg: 4.27
pDev: 7.73%
Wants: 917
Gots: 924 | FT: 28
Brewed by:
3 Floyds Brewing Co. visit their website
Indiana, United States

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

Availability: Year-round

Notes & Commercial Description:
Beer added by: BeerAdvocate on 07-23-2000

A bold yet balanced American Pale Ale with slight caramel sweetness and aggressive citrus hoppiness. This is our flagship beer.

68 IBU
Beer: Reviews & Ratings
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Reviews: 1,717 | Hads: 5,797
Photo of wvsabbath
4.64/5  rDev +8.7%
look: 4.25 | smell: 4.5 | taste: 4.75 | feel: 4.5 | overall: 4.75

Serving Type - Bottle

Appearance - Golden tan/brown with a 1 inch white, foamy head. Nice sticky lacing.

Smell - Sweet citric hops, orange, pineapple, tangerine, honey, added sugars and a caramel malt backbone.

Taste - Starts out with nice citric, sweet fruits and a nice malt backbone. Some grassy and herbal notes, along with some added sugars. Mango, pineapple and orange is present in each sip. Has a nice lemon and cherry flavor near the finish. No alcohol nor any pale malts are noticeable.

Mouthfeel - Sweet cirtic hops coat the tongue with sweetness. Palate gets more hops, along with some caramel malts. Aftertaste is mild, citric sweet.

Overall - Awesome. Pushes the edge of a pale ale. Any more hop kick and this Is a ipa. Incredibly smooth, tasty and full of flavor, theres a reason this is 3 floyds flagship beer. A totally different monster then zombie dust, but equally impressive. (901 characters)

Photo of merlin48
4.65/5  rDev +8.9%
look: 4 | smell: 4 | taste: 5 | feel: 4.5 | overall: 5

This poured a murky auburn orange color, with an offwhite head that hung around quite a while. Ring lacing was there until the last dram. Mouthfeel is a bit surprising, as that's where I sense the first inkling of the nice malt going on here. The nose is all about grapefruit, tangerine, and spruce. Halfway through, it still looks like southern iced tea in an oldtimey pitcher. The taste is memorable. I've forgotten how long it's been since I've had such a perfect blend of subdued sweet caramel taste teased by such a wonderful sour grapefruit and bitter Mandarin orange hop balance. This one seems like a happy marriage of an excellent North American ESB with a westcoast Double IPA. Extraordinary! (702 characters)

Photo of thebarnesbomb
4.65/5  rDev +8.9%
look: 4.5 | smell: 4.5 | taste: 5 | feel: 4 | overall: 4.5

One of my all time favorites. One of the few benefits of living in Indiana is being close to Three Floyds brewery.

A- Pours a clear, dark ruby with a thick head that lasts almost all the way down

S- Scents of fruity hops, and a bit of sweet malts

T- Outstanding. A great balance between the copious hops and the malts that keep these hops from running rampant on the palate

M- Rich, inviting, but a bit oily from the hops in the aftertaste

D- Tempted to drink the whole 6, so tasty. (487 characters)

Photo of peabody
4.65/5  rDev +8.9%
look: 4.5 | smell: 4.5 | taste: 5 | feel: 4 | overall: 4.5

Pours out clear Ice tea color with just a little white suds and very little lacing.
Smell is very complex. Plum and cherry and cinammon and carmel. The hops and the alcohol are in the back but very detectable.
Taste is wonderful. Plum and grapefruit and coffee and caramel with spices. Then the Pine. Man, this is the most Piney brew I have had to date. MMMM these are great hops.
Mouthfeel is a little oily but after the alcohol leaves the piney feel stays with you for quite some time.
6% means you should limit yourself but the flavor says "gimme one more please". (571 characters)

Photo of Erdinger2003
4.65/5  rDev +8.9%
look: 4.5 | smell: 4.5 | taste: 4.5 | feel: 5 | overall: 5

The head has dissipated leaving behind lacing and a good strong lacing with a slight amount of head, but the lacing is thick...maybe 2mm thick at it's weakest point. Color is dark brown to ruby red.

Smell is overwhelmingly hoppy and slightly fruity. The hops are slightly grassy. It has some lemon and raspberry to it.

The taste is primarily hops, but it also has some fruityness that ranges from lemon to strawberry/ raspberry.

Mouthfeel is excellent, it is carbonated quite well which leaves a foamy smooth feel on the tongue.

This will be a regular drink for me, it's great. (582 characters)

Photo of AdamThomas
4.65/5  rDev +8.9%
look: 4.5 | smell: 4.5 | taste: 4.75 | feel: 4.5 | overall: 4.75

A: Deep dark amber with a wonderful white whip-cream head for accoutrement.

S: Tropical fruits on the 1st nose with a dominance of hops following.

T: Malt flavor with a slight carbonation. Full body beer with enough pine to balance the malt. Plenty of hops flavor to help mellow the two flavor profiles. This is a typical medium body everyday drinking beer. Perfect in every aspect.

M: Full flavor/body with slight carbonation.

O: Perfect APA. I'd be happy if more breweries cloned Alpha King. Has an exquisite combination of malts/pine/hops and citrus for a wonderful APA. Highly recommended! (597 characters)

Photo of Damian
4.65/5  rDev +8.9%
look: 4.5 | smell: 4.5 | taste: 4.5 | feel: 5 | overall: 5

Drank from a 12 fl oz/355 ml bottle
Served in a pint glass
Thanks to Jeager for including this as an extra in our trade

The beer poured a crystal clear, deep reddish-amber color with a two-finger, frothy, off-white head that slowly faded to a thick ring. Spotty blocks of lacing trickled down the glass.

The aroma was intensely hoppy yet balanced. A bold, citrusy, spicy orange quality was apparent along with rich, sweet, caramel malts.

The taste was hoppy and zesty yet incredibly smooth and well balanced. Malty and a touch sweet up front with some mild brown sugar notes. Citrus fruits (candied orange peel and grapefruit) were immediately noticeable as well. Spicy in the center. The snappy and clean finish was piny and dry initially and became more intense (and more bitter) as the beer warmed.

The mouthfeel was medium/fuller bodied for the style. Outrageously creamy with a fine, medium carbonation. Silky smooth and supple on the palate.

Drinkability was simply outstanding. This is an easy-drinking yet oh-so-flavorful pale ale. What more could one ask for from a session brew?

Simply put, this is an incredibly solid and well-crafted beer. For a pale ale, it was definitely the most intense version I have yet to try (it more closely resembled an IPA than a pale ale). Overall, another winner from the folks at Three Floyds. (1,342 characters)

Photo of pezoids
4.65/5  rDev +8.9%
look: 5 | smell: 5 | taste: 4.5 | feel: 4.5 | overall: 4.5

We stopped by their brewery in munster recently and was
poured an Alpha King by owner and brewer Nick Floyd. I was completely blown away. First by the intense hop and citrus aroma, then by the overall taste. I had this beer in a bottle a few years prior and it was pretty good then, but I urge everyone out there to go and see Nick and let him pour you
a fresh one. You might also be blown away. (398 characters)

Photo of 1fastz28
4.65/5  rDev +8.9%
look: 5 | smell: 5 | taste: 4.5 | feel: 4.5 | overall: 4.5

Another beer that i could have sworn that i have tried before, but i guess i was wrong. pours a great looking cloudy light amber color with a decent amount of sediment floating around. looks really really good, smell is great too, has a full nose of hops to it and is a real treat to the nose. taste is very good, the only thing keeping this one from a 5 is that it is a bit watery, just a tiny but, but enought to be noticeable. other than that, this beer is nearly flawless and a textbook pale ale. (500 characters)

Photo of Bitterbill
4.65/5  rDev +8.9%
look: 4 | smell: 4 | taste: 5 | feel: 4.5 | overall: 5

Poured from 12 oz bottle(room temp) a ruby red with a medium sized head of foam that dissipated slowly. Lots of lacing.

The smell is a bit on the light side but I note some citrus tones from the hops.

The first sip is so darn tasty! Hop bitterness is there and it's offset by an ample dose of malty sweetness making for a nicely balanced flavour that is a real delight. Subsequent sips caress my palate even more with the finish being as good as I've ever had in any beer. Man, the drinkability of this APA is oustanding!

Bottom line: Alpha King Pale Ale, in my book, is *the* APA that all others should be judged by. Simply fantastic!

My thanks to Bditty 187!!! (674 characters)

Photo of legalpete19340
4.65/5  rDev +8.9%
look: 4 | smell: 4 | taste: 5 | feel: 4.5 | overall: 5

A: Poured mahogany with less than a finger of head that disappeared almost immediately.

S: Pineapple, apple cider, pronounced grain and malt.

T: Wow. Lots of pineapple and tropical fruit, but the malt holds it back from being overly sweet. The middle comes and goes with a long bite of bitterness and aspirin. When you expect the end to bite, it doesnt. Its smooth and smacks of rye bread and oily hops.

M: Just the perfect type of medium with a little fizz.

O: Best pale ale of my life. So easy to drink and every sip was enjoyable. This is a legend. (555 characters)

Photo of Gehrig
4.65/5  rDev +8.9%
look: 5 | smell: 5 | taste: 4.5 | feel: 4.5 | overall: 4.5

I swung by the stellar Neil St. Piccadilly this morning for some wares, since I hadn't done any ardent sampling in weeks. Great timing on my part. In addition to nabbing what should be some nice winter beers and more, it was a treat to see that they had some Three Floyds selections. I hadn't tried a new pale ale in quite some time, and this was just what the beer doctor ordered.

Alpha King made a magnificent first impression on the eyes and nose. Two pillowy fingers of white froth lay atop a clear burnt orange body, coating the Ommegang glass with decorative lacing--beautiful. I'm not kidding when I say that, after opening Alpha King, I stood at the counter in my kitchen and sniffed the bottle for a full minute. When I judge a beer's aroma, I do so out of the glass, but it starts for me out of the bottle. Holy crap! It's flush with citrus hops, loaded with tangerine and orange, and doesn't fade as it warms. Wow.

It's listed as a pale ale, but is at least as much an IPA given the heavy hop taste, that bitter flavor, that I love. Yet it's also smooth and creamy as a good pale ale. Both styles are represented well, incorporating fruit and hop bitterness, all with some malt heft. Very nice, even with a slight flattening near the end.

This is not to be missed, a fabulous pale ale that I'd contend is more IPA than APA. Regardless, hop lovers shouldn't be disappointed after enjoying this, a genuine treat and the best in what few Three Floyds wares I've had the good fortune to sample. It won't be the last time. Outstanding. (1,544 characters)

Photo of JDK
4.65/5  rDev +8.9%
look: 4 | smell: 4 | taste: 5 | feel: 4.5 | overall: 5

Thanks to the Anderson's in Lima, OH for getting this back in stock for me!
Poured a cloudy amber color with a 1 finger head that slowly disappeared.
Nice lacing that clung to the sides for quite a while
Sweet hoppy smell with light citrus
Medium mouthfeel, not overly carbonated and has a nice lingering grapefruit aftertaste.
Very good ale overall, definately one of my favorites! (388 characters)

Photo of mophie
4.65/5  rDev +8.9%
look: 4.5 | smell: 4.5 | taste: 5 | feel: 4 | overall: 4.5

Ahhh, now this is what an APA is supposed to be. Golden orange color with a thick white head that lasts throughout. Floral aroma and knock-you-on-your-ass grapefruity hoppiness. Delightful. Now I am a huge Sierra Nevada fan, but this definitely tops their pale ale. Nicely done! (278 characters)

Photo of williamherbert
4.66/5  rDev +9.1%
look: 3.5 | smell: 5 | taste: 4.5 | feel: 4.5 | overall: 5

Cleary and glassy amber/orange color. Nice but brief foamy white head. Looks like triaminic.

Serious pine-oil hop aroma. Bitter but also flowery sweet. Really perfect. West Coast hops are sweet smelling and inviting. Perfect sweet-bitter balance.

Major blast of bitter, woody hops and a splash of alcohol. A little burn on the way down. Very strong. Hop flavor is sweet at first, then bitter. Slaps with the bitter, but mellows out at the end.

Remains on the tongue after the swallow. Thick and a tiny bit fizzy but goes down smooth. It's a superior beer. (558 characters)

Photo of kmo1030
4.67/5  rDev +9.4%
look: 4 | smell: 4.5 | taste: 5 | feel: 4.5 | overall: 4.5

cloudy dark copper color. a little hard to coax a good head out of this, but i got an adequate one. it quickly dissipates leaving some sticky lacing. ridiculously grapefruity piney hop aroma with a slightly spicy malt character. this taste is as excellent as i could have hoped for. it kicks you in the teeth witha boat load of fruity hops, that are then backed up by a light caramel slightly fruit malt flavor. really achieves a non "hop water" taste that many very hoppy beers have (not that i am not a fan of that sometimes too, but for a beer to achieve greatness it's needs some balance). fizzy medium sticky resinous body that really adds to the experience. a really excellent beer that i'm really glad i had a chance to pick up. (735 characters)

Photo of wailingwench
4.67/5  rDev +9.4%
look: 4 | smell: 4.5 | taste: 5 | feel: 4.5 | overall: 4.5

I initially have a problem with anything from Indiana. Syracuse vs. Indiana, 1987, Keith Smart, need I say more? This beer almost made up for those last 3.4 seconds. Randomly tried at The Raven, Oswego, NY.

Foam Factor: Cloudy yellow with some orange highlights. Thick yellow tinted head present throughout.Mesmerized by the dry hops that were floating in it. They captivated me and commanded me to drink more. Of course I complied. A beer that talks to me is a beer worth drinking.

Skunk Factor: Bold and complex. Hops initially overpower. As Alpha warms, floral, citrus, and a hint of something pine chime in.

Tongueland: Tongue was happy. Blunt and bold hop offering at first, but like the aroma, taste became more complex. Finished rich, dense, and well balanced at the end.

Bender: At 7%, whoo hoo. I had the intention of just trying one of these before going with Black Forest for the night. Well, I never made it to the Forest as I detoured staright into Hopland. In addition, I was on my way home to Buffalo. This beer convinced me to get a hotel room and stay over so we could become better friends. (1,121 characters)

Photo of dmarch
4.67/5  rDev +9.4%
look: 4.5 | smell: 5 | taste: 4.5 | feel: 5 | overall: 4.5

Pours with an amber color. Grapefruit comes through in the aroma and in the taste as well. It's labeled a pale ale, but I might go as far as to call it an IPA. It's a wonderful beer with a wonderful hop character. I hope I find more of it around here. (251 characters)

Photo of SykDoc
4.67/5  rDev +9.4%
look: 4 | smell: 4.5 | taste: 5 | feel: 4.5 | overall: 4.5

Had this on-tap at Charlie's while in Munster for DLD '09 and took notes.

Poured into a pint glass. It pours an nice amber color with no visible sediment. An off-white 1 inch head forms and slowly reduces to good lacing.

The aroma is, as expected, primarily grapefruit with nice doses of pine in the background. Definitely hoppy.

The taste was exceptional with significant components of pine, as well as citrusy flavors, primarily grapefruit. And the hops shall set you free.

This was a very smooth pale ale. There is the sensation of a slight spice, which seems to come from the carbonation. It is medium bodied and has a pleasant dryness at the finish.

Overall, this is a very good beer and is well balanced. The flavors complement each other nicely and are definitely highlighted by the carbonation and smoothness. (824 characters)

Photo of beernut7
4.67/5  rDev +9.4%
look: 4 | smell: 4.5 | taste: 5 | feel: 4.5 | overall: 4.5

First thing that came to mind: "Holy crap what a great beer!" Huge citrus aroma leading to a refreshing and extremely drinkable, well-bodied ale. The intense spicy citrus hop profile is awesome with an aggressive, but not oppressive, bitter bite. Up on/near the top of the line. (281 characters)

Photo of ColdPoncho
4.67/5  rDev +9.4%
look: 4.5 | smell: 5 | taste: 4.5 | feel: 4 | overall: 5

A - Lovely amber body, medium light tan head with exceptional retention.

S - Light grapefruit hops, and a moderately complex profile of bitterness which is hard to place, but it's subtle and really great.

T - Hop forward for sure, bitter grapefruit and the rest, but there is a nice biscuity malt profile along with it. Very good.

M - Very smooth, medium-full body, moderately drying. Great feel, perhaps a bit drier than I'd prefer

O (D) - Excellent beer. It lives up to its reputation. (491 characters)

Photo of dickroop
4.67/5  rDev +9.4%
look: 4.5 | smell: 5 | taste: 5 | feel: 4 | overall: 4

I found this long-sought, much-heralded beer at Bigby's Pour House in Addison, IL. What a find, and not just a bottle but on tap.

Served clear, coppery with puffy 1-finger head. It had outstanding lacing that draped down the sides of the glass, foreshadowing a rich experience.

A powerful nose, with grapefruit rind, some floral aspects, but most of all sawmill pine resin. It was resin so fresh that you could believe you were next to a pine tree in the woods or in the mill.

Hops overwhelm malt flavor - you know it's there, expressed as sweetness, but I was hard pressed to dissect the flavor. Sips produce a clean bitter finish, followed by a grainy, bitter aftertaste.

Carbonation produces a lively mouthfeel that leads the way to enjoyment of hops. Some stickiness.

Drinkability is good, a great flavor treat. (820 characters)

Photo of edmundfitzoil
4.67/5  rDev +9.4%
look: 4 | smell: 4.5 | taste: 5 | feel: 4.5 | overall: 4.5

Alpha King poured from a 12 oz. brown bottle into a standard pint glass on the eve of our move to Florida.

The beer poured a very deep, reddish amber with a finger of thick off white head that left fine lacing around the top of the intial pour. The beer's nose was quite nice: big and bigger piney and spicey hops.

How do I catergorize the flavor of this beer? Seems unbelievable that this is an American Pale Ale, but my first thought is how good this spicey, hoppy beer would be with pizza. Upfront spicey hoppiness with a warming, subdued aftertaste. The spiciness wasn't as prevalent with the second sip, which hinted at various citrus juices. Later, a light maltiness barely peeks through. No alcohol to be found anywhere in the beer, and even at 6.0% ABV. I'm thinking about sessioning this one. A creaminess appears further into the glass. Alpha King is a medium bodied, hop bomb that is super drinkable. Believe the hype about this one. (950 characters)

Photo of trevorwideman
4.67/5  rDev +9.4%
look: 4 | smell: 4.5 | taste: 5 | feel: 4.5 | overall: 4.5

12oz bottle poured into a pint glass, thanks to demcorhip for this as part of a really great trade.

Pours with a 1/4 inch of head, dissipates to a thin lace that hangs out for the duration of the glass. Deep blood orange colour, unfiltered with mild carbonation. As I put the glass to my nose I began to laugh because the nose was everything and more than I expected, this just smells insanely good. Tons of sweet and spicy oily hops, mild citrus, but more floral and fruity. There's a hefty malt backbone there as well. nothing hidden here, just pure flavour that is extremely inviting.

Taste is just wow. It's times like this that I'm most thankful for my sense of taste. Enormous hop presence, grapefruit, orange, licorice, herbs with a lovely light caramel/honey backbone and some toasted malts. Bitterness is pleasant and not overbearing, that said, it's still a hophead beer, the balance definitely leans towards the juicy hops. Sticky and a little oily in the mouth with a dry finish that goes on forever. This is absolutely the hoppiest APA I've ever had, and it's welcome. I'm feeling a very lucky man to be drinking this right now, it's like an elixir to cure all my ills. (1,188 characters)

Photo of brewdoc75
4.67/5  rDev +9.4%
look: 4.5 | smell: 5 | taste: 5 | feel: 4 | overall: 4

I tried to find this when I was in Chicago this week, but nobody had it in bottles. I was told there was something wrong with the bottling lines and it would be a few weeks. My last night there I stopped at the Hopleaf and sure enough they had it on tap.

A-Golden-yellow-orange in color. Nice white fluffy head.

S-Beautiful bouquet of hops. Floral is the best description I can give. Plenty of citrus aromas. I even get a slight grassiness, but in a good way. The malts are there too with a faint sweetness.

T-This beer slams you with the glory of the hop, but not in a bitter aspect. The beer is really not that bitter at all, but the hops do really come out. I got a lot of citrus flavors like orange, tangerine and grapefruit. Additionally there was a nice fruity, ester component. The malts added a slightly biscuty-sweet backbone to the hop flavors. Really flavorful for a APA.

M-Crisp and clean. Reasonable carbonation.

D-A really good APA. Really it seems like an IPA in the hoppy flavors, but not the bitterness. It reminds me a lot of Two Hearted Ale in its hop bouquet. Really drinkable, but the price may turn me off a bit (6 bucks a pint). Hopheads must try. (1,175 characters)

Alpha King from 3 Floyds Brewing Co.
95 out of 100 based on 1,717 ratings.