Alpha King - 3 Floyds Brewing Co.

Not Rated.
Alpha KingAlpha King

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BA SCORE
95
world-class

5,722 Ratings
THE BROS
93
outstanding

(view ratings)
Ratings: 5,722
Reviews: 1,754
rAvg: 4.26
pDev: 9.15%
Wants: 917
Gots: 895 | 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: Ratings & Reviews
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Ratings: 5,722 | Reviews: 1,754
Photo of ethosx19
4.6/5  rDev +8%
look: 4.5 | smell: 4.5 | taste: 4.5 | feel: 4.5 | overall: 5

Dark red amber color, citrus hop smell, and a really cool label. The taste is a little grapefruit and a whole lot of hops. The hop flavor stays on long after the beer is gone. I like hoppy beer and the 7.3% alcohol is a nice bonus.

Photo of Viggo
4.6/5  rDev +8%
look: 4.5 | smell: 4.5 | taste: 4.5 | feel: 4.5 | overall: 5

Damned I love this beer. Many pints on tap at the Yardhouse in Glenview last week. Colour is dark red brown with a nice white tan head that leaves good lacing. The smell is amazing, bitter and lots of floral piney hoppy aroma. Taste is citrusy hops with a pronounced bitterness throughout but with a solid malt backbone to complement. Mouthfeel is smooth, perfect carbonation and perfect bitterness. I think this is a perfect pale ale, I could drink only this for the rest of my life and be happy.

Photo of GameFreac
4.6/5  rDev +8%
look: 4.5 | smell: 4.5 | taste: 4.75 | feel: 4.5 | overall: 4.5

On-tap at Wino's in Bowling Green, KY. Poured into a snifter.

Appearance: Pours a beautiful golden orange color with 2 fingers of a white head.

Smell: Smells of sweet hops, malt, pine, and grapefruit.

Taste - Taste mirrors the nose. Everything is so balanced.

Mouthfeel: Perfect for the style.

Overall: The best pale ale I've ever had. So good.

Photo of AlphaRanger
4.6/5  rDev +8%
look: 4.5 | smell: 4.5 | taste: 4.5 | feel: 4.5 | overall: 5

12oz bottle poured into a Lagunitas jelly jar style glass

A- Slight hazy copper/amber color with nice creamy 2 finger head. Excellent retention and lacing throughout.

S- Beautiful citrus and floral right up front with the perfect balance of malt to complement.

T- WOW! HUUGE hop flavor. Tasting everything I was smelling. Citrus notes lending a slight sweetness and the perfect amount of bitterness. Also a robust somewhat earthiness flavor as well. A nice malt finish to round it all out. Very slight at the end.

M- Med. carbonation. Hops nicely coat the tongue without feeling oily and heavy. Very smooth and refreshing.

O- I've waited YEARS to try this beer. It met AND exceeded my expectations. Hands down one of the finest beers I've had. I loved everything about it including the awesome artwork on the bottles and 6pk carrier! This would easily be my go to APA if I was in the region I purchased these in.

Photo of Cakanator
4.6/5  rDev +8%
look: 4.5 | smell: 4.5 | taste: 4.5 | feel: 4.5 | overall: 5

Bottle. One of the hoppiest pale ales i've ever had. Pours a darker amber/copper color with small white head. Aromas are more malt focused, with only minor amounts of hops. Great balance on the palate between hop and maltiness. The flavors are rich, but not overpowering. With the hop profile I wouldn't have guessed a pale ale, but thats FFF's style. I wish I lived closer to this stuff.

Photo of Jnashed
4.6/5  rDev +8%
look: 4.5 | smell: 4.5 | taste: 4.75 | feel: 4.5 | overall: 4.5

From a bottle purchased from the brewery mid Jan 2014. Poured in a Sam Smith pint glass.

Appearance: pretty orange color, good head and retention. Slightly cloudy. 4.5

Smell: sweat citrus. Not all grapefruit, slightly piney 4.5

Taste: Hop forward for sure, not overbearing? Very balanced, certain.y that same citrus smell is tasted also. 4.75

Mouthfeel: smooth, perfect carbonation. Enjoyable

Overall: excellent to be sure. Not ZD but really good APA. For the flagship beer and most attainable of a hard to get brewety, excellent
4.5

Photo of markgugs
4.6/5  rDev +8%
look: 4.5 | smell: 4.5 | taste: 4.5 | feel: 4.5 | overall: 5

poured from a 12 oz. bottle into a pint glass
- sent to me graciously by BA member "cardsmith"

Honestly, this beer disappeared so quickly I'm not sure I can even review it, but let's see what I remember.

A: poured beautifully, a delicious-looking copperish orange color, a nice 2-finger head and instant lacing. I can tell right away it's going to be stellar, especially when I stick my nose down to get the...

S: ...wonderful aroma emanating from this brew. It's all very subtle, yet enticing at once. Some floral aroma, a nice pink grapefruit and certainly some piney smells.

T: Wow. Just, wow. Seriously, this beer disappeared so quickly, the flavors are just complex enough, and just subtle enough that it's damned near chuggable. There is without a doubt a gorgeous piney overtone to the beer (from the Centennial hops?) as well as some wonderful malted undertones. Utterly delicious. I could drink this all night.

M: Again, just nothing at all wrong with this beer. It feels "right" in your mouth and bigger than usual gulps are real easy, too easy in fact.

D: As I just mentioned, this is an all day, all night beer. One of the most drinkable I've yet encountered. Even my burps taste good.

Highly recommended.

Photo of FormatKid
4.6/5  rDev +8%
look: 4.5 | smell: 4.5 | taste: 4.5 | feel: 4.5 | overall: 5

This bottle arrived as part of the BIF XII bounty. I’m eager to try this one as Three Floyd’s has really earned my respect with their other fine brews.

I poured this 12oz bottle out into a standard tumbler pint glass. The body is a deep ruby tinged amber. A thick sticky head rolls up nicely and recedes eventually to a frothy cap that leaves clumps of lacing clinging to the glass, the head retention is good. The body of the beer supports the head with steady streams of tiny bubbled carbonation. I can see the pieces of what appear to be "hop skin" floating in this brew like I saw it in the Dreadnaught, I guess it's a Three Floyd's thing.

The scent is absolutely divine and I can smell the hoppiness as soon as I start the pour before my nose gets anywhere near the brew. The malts are sweet and almost syrupy laying a nice foundation for the juicy, fruity hop aromas.

The taste is exactly what the smell would lead you to expect. This is probably the hoppiest APA I have had to date. It some how does not push it’s way into the IPA category though, more of a nicely thick malt balance to it. Sweet, thick and powdery malt flavors lead off, before the reins are quickly yanked away by the dominating hop flavors. Big juicy citrus and apricot flavors are all over the place. No hints at all of the monsterous 7.35% ABV for an APA.

I have to say this is the probably my favorite American Pale Ale I have tried so far. Let’s expand that distribution FFF!

Thanks quarre.

Photo of afinepilsner
4.6/5  rDev +8%
look: 4.5 | smell: 4.5 | taste: 4.5 | feel: 4.5 | overall: 5

12oz brown bottle

Alpha King Pale Ale was an orange-amber in color with a nice off-white head. The head had good retention and left quite a bit lacing behind. The aroma was all about the hops, fresh and fruity citrus hops just begging to be tasted. The taste was also very hoppy and delicious with a good malt base to keep some balance. The bitterness was not as intense as you would expect with all of the hops. The finish was dry and bitter. It was medium bodied with good carbonation. Drinkability was excellent. It's one of the best pale ales that I've tried and I highly recommend it.

Photo of laintringulis
4.6/5  rDev +8%
look: 4.5 | smell: 4.5 | taste: 4.5 | feel: 4.5 | overall: 5

Served in an imperial pint glass.

A: Pours a cloudy dark ruby-amber color with 2 finger little beige head that thins to a 1/2 finger head that last throughout drinking. Very little lacing on glass during drinking. Small, tight carbonation bubbles throughout drinking.

S: Hoppy, grapefruit, pine, and light earth smell

T: Very brief inital sweet maltiness on the front with a nice piney hoppiness during the middle. Nice overtone of grapefruit/citrus and general spiciness. Finishes dry with a pleasant hop and grapefruit bitterness.

M/D: Medium-thin bodied, easy to drink. Excellent sessionable beer. The pleasant dry/bitter finish leaves you wanting more.

I don't know if I would consider this an APA. I think it is more bordering on an IPA; however, I know I really like it, no matter what style they call it.

Photo of Citadel82
4.6/5  rDev +8%
look: 4.5 | smell: 4.5 | taste: 4.5 | feel: 4.5 | overall: 5

I was not sure I would like this brew. I had envisioned it as being undrinkable due to being excessively hoppy. I was pleasantly surprised how much I enjoyed it. It pours a beautiful clear copper with a long lasting rocky off-white-head that left lots of clumpy lace. Aroma is in your face citrus, iodine and notes of pine with some faint swet caramel out there fighting to be noticed. Taste is desert dry with strong grapefruit and juniper obliterating the palate in an agressive but not unpleasing manner. Mouthfeel was just right with a hefty grain bill to match the dryness of this agressively hopped brew. Definitely an exceptional APA and well worth seeking out.

Photo of dmgeng
4.6/5  rDev +8%
look: 4.5 | smell: 4.5 | taste: 4.75 | feel: 4.5 | overall: 4.5

Decided to try this because of the super high ratings. And I'm very happy about the decision

A - Beautiful deep orange color with superior khaki head that remains for the entire session. Sticky lacing all the way down. Very clear. Pours thick for an APA.

S - Great hoppy fragrance with a floral/citrus character that shines through. Some malt present.

T - Has all the hops from the aroma with more citrus and finishes floral. The front also has a sweetness from the nice blend of caramel malt. The complimenting malt flavor is there but still more hops as a good APA should be. Very smooth finish with minimal bitterness from the hops. The last flavors on the palate are some malt sweet and delicious hops.

M - Medium to full mouth-feel with the tones of sweetness. Has very light bitterness to be mostly covered up by the sweetness on the back of the tongue. Fine carbonation.

Overall, the hoppiest APA I've had and makes it one of the most refreshing beers I've ever had. Not the best example of the style but a great beer none the less. I love the citrus hops and the nice sweetness the malt. Perfect if you don't like overly bitter IPA's but would like a more citrus/hoppy pale ale. Being from Indiana I'm a little biased but seems like it should be the best APA in the country. I could drink these for ever.

Photo of DovaliHops
4.6/5  rDev +8%
look: 4.5 | smell: 4.5 | taste: 4.5 | feel: 4.5 | overall: 5

Been waiting to try this for a long time now. Had Daisy Cutter last night, so this beer has a lot to prove. I doubt it could be better than DC. Pours a very unique amber color with a nice medium sized head on it. Hops smells immediately when pouring. When smelling this, I get a LOT of sweet malts and caramel. Also get a lot of hops, but not nearly as much as DC. The citrus fruits are there, but not very "in your face." This smell is more well balanced than DC. Taste is very sugary sweet up front, then some citrus fruitiness (i also get hints of cherry), followed by the hop bitterness. This is just an amazing pale ale. The mouthfeel is chewier than most pale ales I've had, but keeps an AMAZING drinkability. I wish they sold this here in California. I'm so spoiled after these last two nights with DC last night and now AK tonight (got 1 of each as extras in a trade). I'm gonna go through "Flawless Pale Ale" withdrawals for the rest of the week.

Photo of RobbieS
4.6/5  rDev +8%
look: 4.5 | smell: 4.5 | taste: 4.75 | feel: 4.5 | overall: 4.5

Outstanding pale ale. Bursting with flavor in a somewhat aggressively-hopped fashion.

Photo of BuckeyeNation
4.6/5  rDev +8%
look: 4.5 | smell: 4.5 | taste: 4.5 | feel: 4.5 | overall: 5

Slightly hazy orange-gold, almost copper, with a pale toffee-colored cap that is somewhat stiff and resembles softly beaten egg whites. The crown has good staying power and deposits quite a bit of lace in thick rings and sheets.

The nose is citrusy hoppy. Not overpowering, not the 'olfactory bomb' that is Stone IPA. The flavor has a citrusy hop bite, but there's also plenty of malt to balance things out. Flavors include grapefruit and orange peel primarily. Delicious. The mouthfeel is plenty smooth, no complaints here. Drinkability is high... nice and smooth, very well-balanced.

Alpha King does seem more like an IPA than a true pale ale. I could definitely make this a regular in my rotation if it was more available. I plan to pick up a couple of fresh sixers (at the brewery) next week.

Photo of Maestro
4.6/5  rDev +8%
look: 4.5 | smell: 4.5 | taste: 4.5 | feel: 4.5 | overall: 5

I was extremely impressed with this pale ale. I like the idea of dropping the "India" moniker. The nose is great. Lots of citrus and pine, coupled with a sweet malt profile. The head is white and thin, but leaves a decent lacing. The color is orange with lots of red highlights. The taste is extremely balanced. The hops are quite present, but they seem to be just right. This isn't an Imperial IPA, just a well-hopped pale ale. There are some grapefruit notes alongside some hints of pine. These are balanced by a taste of toast or a biscuit flavor that balances the hops very well. The ABV is warming as you move through the beer. The finish is very clean and keeps you coming back for more. Wow! This is a great beer.

Photo of GPHarris
4.6/5  rDev +8%
look: 4.5 | smell: 4.5 | taste: 4.5 | feel: 4.5 | overall: 5

a - poured a one finger thick off-white head into a snifter. the body is a dark amber color with a light haze. the head leaves a bubbly lace throughout with light sheeting, it only takes a light swirl to really agitate the head again.
s - hops! grapefruit and pine with a little malt hint.
t - orange zest is the dominant flavor but it has a little grassy taste with some malt in the finish.
m - it's bubbly, smooth and creamy all at the same time. it is so clean it leaves zero aftertaste or lingering on the tongue immediately after the sip.
d - this is superb. i could drink this beer all night long. if there is a better APA out there i haven't had it and they've really done something if it's better than the alpha king. this alpha king is the alpha male of APAs.

Photo of pmcadamis
4.62/5  rDev +8.5%
look: 4 | smell: 4.5 | taste: 4.5 | feel: 5 | overall: 5

Tried this at Navy Pier in downtown Chicago.

A - Ruby amber and clear with a thin white head.

S - Pine and citrus hop aromas mainly. Zesty and zingy.

T - Big ole dose of ctrus and pine hop flavors. Orange rind, pine, and lemon. Much more powerful than the nose. Biscuity malts hold it together.

M - Acidic, medium bodied, and chewy. Excellent dryish finish.

D - Awesome! I could drink these regularly.

Photo of bluemoonswoon
4.62/5  rDev +8.5%
look: 4 | smell: 4.5 | taste: 4.5 | feel: 5 | overall: 5

Pulled from a cask at the Map Room and served in an imperial pint glass.

A: The beer is an impeccable looking dark copper brown with a thick and creamy one inch head that fades into a cap about halfway though the session and leaves behind a nice amount of lacing.

S: Smell is very subtle and very unlike Alpha King from the bottle, this beer seems like an almost entirely different animal. Mild pine and citrus with a good amount of sweet brown sugary malt greet the nose, you can already tell this beer is going to be something special.

T/MF: First sip is a bit unassuming but all that follow are pure hoppy and malty goodness. Super fresh pine and grassy lemony nuttiness, just about the freshest livest thing that has ever passed my lips. Mouthfeel is super smooth and creamy with just the right amount of hop bitterness and carbonation to hold everything together.

D: Insanely drinkable, one of the freshest cleanest tasting "Pale ales" I've had in recent memory. Alpha King is a must try from the cask.

Photo of oracle
4.62/5  rDev +8.5%
look: 4 | smell: 4.5 | taste: 5 | feel: 4 | overall: 4.5

20 oz imperial pint in a traditional english pint glass

This beer is medium to light amber with medium density white head that left little lacing.

Smell is STRONGLY of hops. with strong citrus aromas dominating.

Taste - absolutely outstanding. Strong hoppy at the front with a wonderful citrus middle. Finishes much more cleanly than a lot of other extremely hoppy beers it might be compared with. Well crafted and complex in character, this beer should be appreciated slowly.

This beer drinks clean and easy for such a hoppy ale. It seems to me to be closer to an IPA than a Pale Ale.

Overall, excellent and highly recommended.

Photo of jsh420
4.62/5  rDev +8.5%
look: 4 | smell: 4.5 | taste: 5 | feel: 4 | overall: 4.5

notes from 5/26 blind ipa tasting

pours dark copper orange with 1/2 finger head that left no lacing

smells citrus hops grapefruit little pine and carmel malts

taste was well balanced hops upfront grapefruit and pine with a good malt backbone

mouthfeel was a light/medium body with nice creamy finish

drinkability is very good it might look heavy but this is one easy drinking beer

over this beer finished tied for next to last in blind tasting - to iTs credit this is not an IPA just a very good if not great APA (reviewed as APA)
rankings on tasting 1-8 GFlash-2Hrtd-BigEye=Hop3-CorneDuDiable-60min=AlphaKing-Hdevil

Photo of ChiBeerKM
4.62/5  rDev +8.5%
look: 4.5 | smell: 5 | taste: 4.5 | feel: 4.5 | overall: 4.5

bottle poured into an imperial pint glass

this beer pours a deep amber/ruby color with an inch of fluffy white head that clings to the side of the glass as you drink. very nice looking brew.

the aroma is full of citrus hops plus a small pine aroma as well. ripe grapefruit and orange zest come to mind. there is a slight caramel smell from the malt, which comes out more as the beer warms and opens up.

taste is amazing with hops leading the way with just enough caramel malt to balance the citrusy bitterness. mouthfeel is medium and silky smooth w/ perfect dryness to leave you wanting another sip.

overall this APA is top notch. exactly what i like from the style and exactly what i expect from three floyds. pick some up if you can!

cheers

Photo of keilerdunkel
4.62/5  rDev +8.5%
look: 4 | smell: 4.5 | taste: 4.5 | feel: 5 | overall: 5

12 oz bottle poured into a shaker pint glass.

Appearance is slightly hazy with a orange/brown coppery color topped off with a 1" head which subsided to 1/4" after a couple of minutes. It left nice lacing to the end of the glass.

It has a slightly sweet smell, with a definite citrus overtones (grapefruit/tangerine cross for lack of a better comparison)

Taste: mmm, this is how I expect an APA to taste. Almost as bitter as an americal IPA but not quite. On the first sip, the bitterness hits you first, not overpowering but there, and then is followed by a malty middle and then finishes with the bitterness. Again that nice citrus American hop taste is upfront. Towards the end of the glass, the malt becomes more pronounced, but never loses the hop bite.

mouthfeel smooth with the perfect amount of carbonation.

I could drink these all night, I am surprised at the ABV, because it was not noticible at all. I now see the comparisons mentioned with Pride & Joy mild.

The Three Floyd's beers are fast converting me to being a hop head.

Photo of DrMalt
4.62/5  rDev +8.5%
look: 3.5 | smell: 4 | taste: 5 | feel: 4.5 | overall: 5

Acquired in a trade with Demcorhip.

Expectations were high, shouldn't have read about it before I tried it.

Shared a 12oz bottle (thankfully friend enjoyed as much as I ).

Poured a somewhat hazy amber with hints of orange & a medium sized frothy head.

Taste was definitively APA with loads of hop bitterness, but for me without some of the sometimes "off" bitterness that others can bring. I was surprised by the unique & impressive hop flavours that this beer brought to an APA.

Mouthfeel was good & I think because of the balance of the brew. Malt vs. hop.

Drinkability was simply outstanding. I have always enjoyed drinking APA's for their drinkability & thought it would be hard to top a Liberty or Red Seal Ale. But for my palatte this tops em' all.

My sense is the other BA's that tasted & reviewed this must know a thing or two. Just a great rendition of an APA!

Photo of twelvsies
4.62/5  rDev +8.5%
look: 4 | smell: 4.5 | taste: 5 | feel: 4 | overall: 4.5

Hands down my favorite beer out of the Three Floyds haul I just received (thanks Josh, aka alleykatking). Rich amber in color, great head and lacing on the glass. This beer is just perfectly balanced. Some might push this beer into the IPA category, but I believe it's right where it belongs as a pale ale. It's darker than most IPAs, and while yes it is very hoppy, it's not super bitter or dry. It really has an excellent "hop efficiency", yes I just made that up. Basically I mean that the hops used in this beer seem like they go a long way and the utmost flavor is achieved from the ingredient, therefore it's not overloaded with extra hops or clouded by other ingredients trying to balance out the hops. Fruity, ripe, delicious fresh hop taste. A nice malt backdrop. Wish I had more...

Alpha King from 3 Floyds Brewing Co.
95 out of 100 based on 5,722 ratings.