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Alpha King - 3 Floyds Brewing Co.

Not Rated.
Alpha KingAlpha King

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BA SCORE
95
world-class

5,450 Ratings
THE BROS
93
outstanding

(view ratings)
Ratings: 5,450
Reviews: 1,707
rAvg: 4.26
pDev: 9.15%
Wants: 889
Gots: 707 | FT: 24
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: Ratings & Reviews
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Ratings: 5,450 | Reviews: 1,707 | Display Reviews Only:
Photo of kdmorse
4.47/5  rDev +4.9%
look: 4 | smell: 4.5 | taste: 4.5 | feel: 4.5 | overall: 4.5

Amazing beer. After moving to California, I started to miss the classic beers of the Midwest. The West Coast is known for hops, but Three Floyds does this Pale Ale just right.

Fruity, beautiful and complex all-around. One of the best Pale Ales I've had. Hits the spot and is easy to drink.

Photo of williamherbert
4.66/5  rDev +9.4%
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.

Photo of bgramer
4.47/5  rDev +4.9%
look: 4 | smell: 4.5 | taste: 4.5 | feel: 4.5 | overall: 4.5

Poured into a glass with a copper head that has orange highlights. The white head was about a finger thick - nice lacing on the glass. There's a strong orange grapefruit aroma with a roast malt and caramels. There's definitely a hops presence, but this is very balanced and clean with a crisp finish.

This is a great session beer. I'd like to always have a 6-pack handy in my fridge.

Photo of Slynger
4.4/5  rDev +3.3%
look: 4 | smell: 4 | taste: 4.5 | feel: 4 | overall: 5

Strangely enough, I've had this great beer many times and never officially reviewed it. It is time.

Clear orange-gold under a slim off-white lid that settles quickly.
So sweet fresh orangey-apricot smell with a nicely toasted and caramel malt backbone, then some piney hops.
Sweet caramel and orangey-pineapplicot flavor with toasted grains and a good amount citrus rind and piney hop bitterness on the back end. Medium bodied with an oily smoothness and a fuzzily sharp carbonation.

This one is simply damn good. IPA? APA? Who cares? A mainstay in my fridge that everyone should get to enjoy regularly.

Photo of macster
4.17/5  rDev -2.1%
look: 4 | smell: 4.5 | taste: 4 | feel: 3.5 | overall: 4.5

Bottle. Clear copper/orange pour beneath a thin, but persistant bone white head.

Aromas of freshly sliced grapefruit and orange dominate with a hint of pine and caramel malts in the background.

Mouthfeel is fairly light and smooth.

Although somewhat tauted as a hop-bomb, I found the balance of this APA to be its strength. The citrusy/pine hop flavors are incredibly balanced with the caramel malt sweetness to make this a classic, benchmark APA. Finishes clean and crisp with a fairly aggressive bitterness. Great stuff!

Photo of marcpal
4.84/5  rDev +13.6%
look: 4 | smell: 5 | taste: 5 | feel: 4 | overall: 5

On tap at Hopleaf, poured into American pint glass.

This should be labeled a high quality, highest of quality IPA. Maybe Magic hat could learn something because it seems their IPAs are more Pales to me. This was a great beer.

A: Light amber with great clarity and pillowy head.

S: Wasnt expecting the grassiness and citrus hops that pounded my nose. wow.

T: No, no no... this my friends, is a well balanced IPA in every sense. The malt was there and gave a hello but the hops are tremendously strong and delectable. Grapefruit as well as some lemongrass were terrific.

M: As clean as can be. Spiciness is substantial but leaves you the hop burps.

D: I love the ABV given the taste that represents the balanced hops of a stronger IPA. I compare this one closely to 60 minute, I can absolutely not wait to get a load more of this one.

This was a true treat and 2nd FFF experience after being let down by Baru. This was remarkable and I need to trade for some more and Im happy to say I packed plenty in my luggage to bring home with me along with some GBhead.

Updated review (June - 2008)
Wanted to revisit with a bottle that was sent via trade. The hops are just as present and pleasant. Truly a damn fine beer, even more IPA like than I had remembered. delicious.

Photo of beereality
4.97/5  rDev +16.7%
look: 4.5 | smell: 5 | taste: 5 | feel: 5 | overall: 5

Thanks to 3 Floyds for producing this incredible brew.
I poured this vigorously into an imperial pint. Dark, orange, hazy, thick looking with about one fat finger of very clingy foam. Left lacing that looks like a church window.
Super floral hoppy, citrusy fresh aroma, kinda piney.
Well rounded super hoppy, malty flavor, that improves as it warms. Bursting with flavor! This should be drank slowly, but goes down so easly. for me this is as about as good as it gets.

Photo of MusicaleMike
4.52/5  rDev +6.1%
look: 4 | smell: 4.5 | taste: 4.5 | feel: 4 | overall: 5

Review #2 - 4/12/09: My roommate was kind enough to pick up a six-pack of this when he went out to Indiana last week. So, it's probably fresh? Poured the 12oz. bottle into a pint glass.

A: Cloudy blood orange body is topped by a big, cream-colored foam head. After a few minutes the head collapses to a centimeter thick and stays for a while. The foam leaves a decent amount of irregular lacework.

S: Huge citrus hop aroma! Notes of grapefruit, melon, tangerine and honey. There is a very faint doughy malt aroma that sits behind the citrus. Out of the bottle, the smell it potent, but with some time to breathe, the aromas mellow out.

T: Nicely balanced, though it is definitely hop forward. The juicy, citric hop flavor is balanced gently with a very mild biscuity malt flavor. The citric hop bitterness is up front and leaves a bite on the tongue as you swallow the beer. Grassy hops in the aftertaste, slightly nutty characteristics as well. The sweetness resides more towards the finish, and so the facade of this beer remains a hop trellis.

M: The mouthfeel is a medium bodied, juicy and thirst-quenching consistency, with a soft bite of hop bitterness left on the tongue and a faint, mouth-coating of alpha acids. The carbonation is spot-on.

D: Delicious. I still don't like it as much as I like Pride and Joy, but I would definitely have this as a regular in my beer fridge if it was distributed in my area. Very quaffable!
___
I picked up this beer on my visit to their brewery last week. There is no indication of freshness, except for the fact that I got it from the brewery last week sooo, yeah. It's fresh. I had a taste then of this flagship beer, and it wasn't until today that I got to sit down and review this bad boy.

A: It poured a clear, amber-ruby color with a thick foamy head. It looked very enticing. Also, it laces well.

S: The smell is potent...there is a strong, citrusy hop aroma and a lesser malt smell that is mild but sweet, evoking a fruit. (apple?)

T: At first sip, there is a strong hop presence, which quickly seems to be balanced by a nutty malt character. It remains delicious and very well-balanced throughout. Towards the end of the glass, the beer becomes more bitter.

M: This ale slides over the tongue smoothly. Its light on carbonation and feels light in the mouth.

D: This beer is delicious and I could easily see myself buying a case. This is one drinkable beer!

Score: 4.5/4/4.5/3.5/4.5

Photo of thebarnesbomb
4.65/5  rDev +9.2%
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.

Photo of adamette
4.22/5  rDev -0.9%
look: 4 | smell: 4.5 | taste: 4 | feel: 4 | overall: 4.5

On tap, expertly poured at Chef Paul's Bavarian House in Lisle, Illinois, my favorite place to drink beer in the world.

A Golden Brown 4.0

S 75 per cent hoppy 3.0

T Mild Hoppy 4.0

M Fine, not remarkable 3.5

D Good 4.0

This was a "safe" micro brew to my taste. It was suitably complex, interesting but it was not remarkable like others that I tried that night. It was good, just not remarkably good.

That was my first review. The values that I assigned are listed above as well. Here is my updated review:

Review from notes taken while I enjoyed this beer on tap at The Bavarian Lodge in Lisle, IL with (among others) my two brothers-in-law Steven and Mat August 21st, 2010. Mat lives within minutes of this place and we enjoy visiting there when I am in town. Poured into standard pint glass.

A Nice lacing left on the inside of the glass from a white head over a maroon, translucent body. The maroon may be more of a nutty brown, maroon body. Good look. 4.0

S Organic hops but they are reasonably balanced with a nice, nutty sweetness. Very inviting, interesting. 4.5

T Really great session Pale Ale which is hedging toward an IPA in my opinion. Taste of the moderate hops and slightly less than moderate sweet malt with a woodsy, nutty goodness as well. A real classic American Pale Ale. 4.0

M Moderate feel with bitter hops filling it up but a solid malt background filling it out as well. 4.0

D Again, really very good with a manageable ABV of 6.0% and all of that hops goodness! 4.5

Notes: I can see now why so many people like this, a true classic American Pale Ale!

Photo of DefenCorps
4.32/5  rDev +1.4%
look: 4 | smell: 4.5 | taste: 4.5 | feel: 4 | overall: 4

12oz bottle received from czoch75 via trade

A: Crystal clear amber with an off-white head that recedes leaving sticky lace

S: Hoppy and sweet. Pine, citrus with tons of caramel in there. Hints of mango

T: A blast of pine hops with just enough malt to back it all up. The finish is dry and hoppy. Very good.

M: Maybe a little undercarbonated for the style but it allows the hops to coat the palate pretty well.

D: I'd drink another. Definitely the hopppiest APA i've tried

Photo of srroos
4.22/5  rDev -0.9%
look: 4 | smell: 4.5 | taste: 4 | feel: 4 | overall: 4.5

Pours slightly hazy and amber from a 12oz bottle into a pint glass. One finger of well retained tan head. Smells surprisingly hoppy for an APA, more like an IPA. Tastes bitter and somewhat spicy, with a good background of malt. Mouthfeel is good with a long lasting bitter finish. Drinkability is excellent as well, as would be expected with a moderate alcohol pale ale.

Not a beer to knock your socks off, but if I could get this in bulk I'd keep a stock on hand all the time!

Photo of churchillps
3.78/5  rDev -11.3%
look: 4 | smell: 3.5 | taste: 4 | feel: 4 | overall: 3.5

Presentation: 12oz bottle

A: A nice clear amber color. Small head, good stickiness on the sides of glass.

S: Overall, not very great. Except for something spicy - perhaps cinnamon.

T/M/D: I would elaborate, but this is standard. Nice and hoppy, but just a mundane pale ale.

Photo of bassmantin
4.52/5  rDev +6.1%
look: 4 | smell: 4.5 | taste: 5 | feel: 4 | overall: 4

Pours a semi-transparent vivid orange with a nice white/tan head that clings to my Sam Adams glass.

Smell is full of those great hops. This is the beer that turned me on to hops, and it continues to stand up to the best IPAs out there. There is a great citrus flavor, FFF's flagship hoppiness that is present throughout the taste. Decent maltiness in the finish, too.

I think this beer stands with the hop giants. It's not an IIPA or even and IPA (technically), but it is one of the best examples of hops out there.

Photo of ColForbinBC
4.4/5  rDev +3.3%
look: 4 | smell: 4.5 | taste: 4.5 | feel: 4.25 | overall: 4.25

Had this on-tap at The Map Room in Chicago
(from notes)

Appeared a reddish amber, rather clear with a white head. Had nice staying power and left some good lacing.

Nose is of citrus and floral hops. Hints of tangerines and flowers. A nice burst right off the bat makes this one a winner already.

The hops really come through in the flavor. A giant punch of floral hops hits the tongue and then a perfectly sized toasted malt backbone takes over. A really bitter hop presence.

Smooth and velvety with a medium body.

The drinkability on this guy is right about where it should be for the style.

This is a great go-to...pale ale? Really? Could have fooled me. Anywho, consider yourself lucky if you can grab these on a regular basis.

Photo of MarkSCCOT
4.2/5  rDev -1.4%
look: 4 | smell: 4 | taste: 4 | feel: 4 | overall: 5

Received as an extra from BA stopbarking yet another local trade. I had a chance to sample this once at Rnorgart's house once and my interest was piqued.

Poured from a 12 ounce bottle into a pint glass.

A. Amber brew with a fluffy head and decent lacing.

S. Nice citrusy and floral hops. Mild malt and orange smell.

T. Very well balanced. The hops are intense and pleasing without overwhelming the malt.

M. Slightly chewy and crisp mouthfeel. Very clean finish.

D. A great sessionable American Pale Ale. Definitely wish I had more than one!

Photo of gkatsoris
4.07/5  rDev -4.5%
look: 4.5 | smell: 5 | taste: 3.5 | feel: 4 | overall: 4

A: Coppery brownish in color. Nice big, pure white, THICK, foamy head. Lots of lacing, and took about 3 minutes to settle.

S: Sweet. sweet hops. Lots of flowers, sugary malts, and hints of citrus. Bread and raisins as well.

T: I received this one in a trade so maybe it's past its prime. Didn't live up to the smell, but decent none the less. Very clean, little hops.

M: Not too much carbonation, and pretty chewy.

D: Not as good as I thought it was going to be, but pretty respectable. I guess it's hard to live up to perfection every time.

Photo of bloberglawp
4.76/5  rDev +11.7%
look: 3.5 | smell: 5 | taste: 5 | feel: 4.5 | overall: 4.5

Big thanks to tpd975 for this one on a recent trade!

Pour medium dark cooper with a thick white head that lingers around (pale ale?).

Holy crap, what a bouquet! Intense hops, then more hops, a faint buttersweet maltiness and more hops. Flavor is even better, its like drinking hop juice, there's also a hint of fresh mellon, a very intense floral note, generous citrus, slight spice.

And to top it off, its not overpowering like some hoppy ales tend to be, its incredibly well balanced and drinkable.

Man candy.

Photo of jbphoto88
4.2/5  rDev -1.4%
look: 4 | smell: 4 | taste: 4.5 | feel: 4 | overall: 4

Pours from the bottle a deep amber color with a thin head that has little to no retention. There is some lacing but it is also very thin.

Smell is of malts and some citrus, mixed with a little piney notes. There are also some soft floral notes that combine with the maltiness to produce an interesting nose. It makes me want to take a sip.

The taste does not disappoint. It is the epitome of an American Pale Ale. It has a lovely subtle malt taste that transitions to a nice clean hoppy bitterness. No buttery mouthfeel to hint towards the English style.

A tasty beverage! Easy to drink and quite enjoyable. This one can be consumed all night.

Photo of DrDogbeer
4.07/5  rDev -4.5%
look: 4 | smell: 4.5 | taste: 4 | feel: 3.5 | overall: 4

Thanks to Sephiroth for this one, also. Poured from bottle into a snifter- pours a deep amber color with good sized creamy white head. Tons of lacing. Tons of piney hop aromas, without even taking a good whiff of this one! It comes right out. Great bite right off the bat. Grainy, piney bitterness. A hophead's delight. medium body with a lingering bitter flavor keeps this beer on the palate for a while. More bite and flavor that any PA I have had in a while. Kind of like a Sierra on steroids. I Like it a-l-o-t...

Photo of abankovich
3.83/5  rDev -10.1%
look: 4 | smell: 3.5 | taste: 4 | feel: 3.5 | overall: 4

Thanks to TheodorHerzl for helping me get my hands on this.

Poured into a snifter a very nice, deep amber color. A thin head was present upon pouring but dissipated very quickly. Nice lacing is present though that is definitely clinging to the sides of my glass.

Smell, I love the smell of Pale Ales and this one doesn't disappoint Definitely bitter with some floral notes and a little citrus. Also noticed a little caramel after it warmed up for a few minutes. Some toasted notes are also present.

The first taste that hit my tongue was definitely very bitter, but refreshing. The bitterness seems to stay throughout each sip actually, with hints of that caramel and some citrus. Some taste of alcohol is also present.

Mouthfeel is good, medium bodied. Leaves my mouth feeling a little dry afterwards.

Drinkability is fantastic, especially after this one warms up a bit. At first it was a little overpowering compared to what I was expecting. 5 minutes after the first sip though, things mellowed out and are very smooth going down.

Photo of paulthebeerguru
3.92/5  rDev -8%
look: 3.5 | smell: 4 | taste: 4 | feel: 3.5 | overall: 4

Three Floyds Alpha King
12oz. brown bottle

Poured into a snifter. Alpha King pours a reddish amber color, with an off-white head that drops quickly. Really nice lacing. Great hop aroma..very floral, citrusy and piney. Taste starts with an iced tea, malty background, with a very nice hoppy twang that reminds me of centennial and cascade. Mouthfeel is smooth and a little dry. Light mouthfeel as well. I could drink a ton of these if only Three Floyds was in Florida. Very nice American Pale Ale.

Photo of timtim
4.47/5  rDev +4.9%
look: 4 | smell: 4.5 | taste: 4.5 | feel: 4.5 | overall: 4.5

seems like enough has been said, but i have to shout out to this nice, hoppy, citrusy and slightly piney pale ale. great pale ale for the hop head, and nice malt backbone as well. seems this brewery has developed somewhat of a cult following, and they deserve it. never had anything below par by them. please keep 'em coming three floyds. cheers.

Photo of barleywinebrewer
4/5  rDev -6.1%
look: 4 | smell: 4 | taste: 4 | feel: 4 | overall: 4

701 reviews as of this writing. I'll leave the usual review behind and note some of my impressions. Wow, that's one piney / grassy hoppy beer. Smells stronger regarding the piney note than the taste, taste lends more of a grassy note. Nice that they decided to stay a lower ABV APA than a DIPA.

I can see why hopheads would love this beer! Not my cup of alpha.

Photo of lightindarkness
4.2/5  rDev -1.4%
look: 4 | smell: 4 | taste: 4.5 | feel: 4 | overall: 4

12oz bottle of the classic Three Floyds hoppy brew.

Pours a slightly hazy dark amber color with a creamy bubbly head and nice lace.

Hoppy nose of pine, peach, and grapefruit with a little soft bread, straw, and light malt.

Taste has just enough malt to hold the middle, with a piny resin on top. A little juicy citrus turns to full bitterness at the finish with hints of hay and grains.

Mouthfeel is medium/full for a PA, a little oily and somewhat dry at the finish. Good carbonation.

Very sturdy for a Pale Ale, with strong flavor and big bitterness. Very drinkable.

Alpha King from 3 Floyds Brewing Co.
95 out of 100 based on 5,450 ratings.