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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

4,236 Ratings
THE BROS
93
outstanding

(view ratings)
Ratings: 4236
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
Ratings: 4,236 | Reviews: 1,646 | Show All Ratings:
Photo of abcsofbeer
abcsofbeer

Virginia

4.1/5  rDev -4%
look: 3 | smell: 4.5 | taste: 4 | feel: 4.5 | overall: 4

Pours a pale orange color, clear, with ample carbonation. The head is very nice, off white and bubbly. There is lots of sticky lace all over the glass. Aroma is abundantly citrus with
a great deal of hops throughout. The taste is grapefruit and nicely bitter in the aftertaste. A fine APA, I must say. Very refreshing and good for quenching the thirst.

Serving type: bottle

11-27-2004 01:02:49 | More by abcsofbeer
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
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kmpitz2

Tennessee

4.75/5  rDev +11.2%
look: 4 | smell: 4.5 | taste: 5 | feel: 4 | overall: 5

This beer pours a golden amber color with head that just coats the beer. The nose is awesome. There is lots of grapefruit hops overlaying some mellow caramel tones and some orange peel tones. Nice nice and nice. The flavor is so nice. There is a great grapefruit hop, deliscious sweet orange caramel malt and a peppery and mellow hop finish. I really like this beer a lot. I like the Pride and Joy, but this is more my style. Sweet beer. The feel is moderate to thick...maybe a touch thin. Drinability is awesome on this one. I dig this beer a lot.

Serving type: bottle

11-24-2004 02:49:24 | More by kmpitz2
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LarryKemp

Texas

4.1/5  rDev -4%
look: 5 | smell: 4 | taste: 4 | feel: 4.5 | overall: 4

A dark clear reddish copper with a thick long lasting head that leaves a nice head. This is what an Americn IPA is supposed to look like.

The citrusy hop aroma is quite prevalent with little malt in the nose.

The taste started with a hint of malt sweetness that lingered throughout and tempered the hops in the finish. I could not detect any caramel or roasted malt. The hops bitterness did indeed linger into the finish and approached harshness.

The mouthfeel was surprisingly medium-bodied. Because of the malt sweetness, it was not as dry finishing as I had expected. I did not detect much carbonation.

Overall I find this is a very good American IPA and is at the upper limits for style in IBU's and ABV but does not go over the top in any aspect.

Serving type: bottle

11-17-2004 03:47:22 | More by LarryKemp
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99bottles

Pennsylvania

2.98/5  rDev -30.2%
look: 3.5 | smell: 2.5 | taste: 3 | feel: 2.5 | overall: 3.5

Appearance: Light amber-copper color. Clear body, filtered, average carbonation. Inch head of white retains better than average.

Smell: Some piney hops, some floral qualities, but not in the skillfully dry-hopped sense of delicacy. This doesn't have a real strong nose. Some sweet carmelized sugar scents from the malts. Oranges.

Taste: Some light citrus notes, orange and piney hop flavors. Not a real substantial malt base, some dry biscuit and carmel flavors. Not very different than the masses of pale ales out there. This tries to breach the PA - IPA boundary, but doesn't really commit to either. Only the slightest bitterness in the finish. I can't reccommend this beer because it doesn't have any direction.

Mouthfeel: Medium to low carbonation. The body is light and easy to quaff, but doesn't really offer any substance.

Drinkability: Not difficult to drink, but not interesting enough to make me want another. Just because this brewery makes some real gems, doesn't mean that everything it makes is good, or even competent.

Serving type: bottle

11-13-2004 21:55:44 | More by 99bottles
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ejquin

Illinois

3.98/5  rDev -6.8%
look: 3.5 | smell: 4 | taste: 4 | feel: 4 | overall: 4

Appearance: Dark brown, but mildly transparent with white head that dissapates quickly, but leaves lacing during the entire glass.

Smell: Grapefruit citrus type smell definitive of a pale ale. You can tell the beer is very hoppy but not blow you away strong.

Taste: Very good pale ale type flavor. Well balanced, and not too strong on the hops. Still very present though Dry aftertaste. Can taste a bit of the alcohol but hides it pretty well.

Mouthfeel: Good. A little more corbonated than I'd like.

Drinkibility: Does a decent job of hiding the alcohol.

Serving type: bottle

11-11-2004 22:22:08 | More by ejquin
Photo of KroMagnon
KroMagnon

Tennessee

4.3/5  rDev +0.7%
look: 4 | smell: 5 | taste: 4 | feel: 4 | overall: 4.5

Clear, with a nice amber-gold color with orange highlights. The head is bubbly, large bubbles, but spawns a lot of Belgian lace and is very rocky (and off-white in color). The aroma is totally hops - wonderful - piney, floral, and a dash of citrus. The flavor is also dominated by hops, with a spicy bitterness reminescent of cinnamon, but a malty backbone exists to keep the beer from being terribly overbearing. However, it would be nice if there were more "depth" from the maltiness. (I can't think of a better way to describe it.) Overall nice mouthfeel and drinkability. This is great.

Serving type: bottle

11-09-2004 03:09:38 | More by KroMagnon
Photo of ramrod666
ramrod666

Pennsylvania

4.25/5  rDev -0.5%
look: 3.5 | smell: 3.5 | taste: 4.5 | feel: 4.5 | overall: 4.5

appearence of this pale ale is a medium amber with a small head that retained rather well. visable sediment floating throughout. ahh, unfiltered.

smell is not very telling of the taste. huge caramel nose with a slight hop wiff in the finish.

taste is a beautiful floral hoppiness that overwhelms the palate with aslight alcohol note in the finish. delicious.

mouthfeel is nice and even. not too syrupy or light....just right

drinkability is great. i could drink many of these before realizing the 7.35abv. extre
mly enjoyable.

Serving type: bottle

11-08-2004 00:41:45 | More by ramrod666
Photo of alexgash
alexgash

Connecticut

4.6/5  rDev +7.7%
look: 4.5 | smell: 5 | taste: 4.5 | feel: 4.5 | overall: 4.5

Isn’t “alpha king” redundant? Whatever.
Pours a tantalizing orange-copper with a sticky, off-white head. Good lacing.
Aromas of toffee and fruit malt mix with juicy, citrus, resiny hop fumes. Very nice! I can tell I’m going to like this.
Big, chewy malts up front; toffee, fruit, light brandy. Nicely balanced by equally big (if not bigger) hops. They enter midway through and swell into the finish with intense citrus (grapefruit) and pine sap flavors. Bitter and oily, with an almost cannabis resiny character. Big-bodied, chewy malts, and an appetizing, oily finish. A great pale ale, that’s big enough to be most breweries’ IPA. Very drinkable as well.

Serving type: bottle

11-06-2004 23:50:21 | More by alexgash
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keilerdunkel

Illinois

4.63/5  rDev +8.4%
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.

Serving type: bottle

11-04-2004 19:02:45 | More by keilerdunkel
Photo of bashiba
bashiba

Iowa

4.5/5  rDev +5.4%
look: 4.5 | smell: 4.5 | taste: 4.5 | feel: 4.5 | overall: 4.5

This beer is a nice amber hue with a creamy tan head which clings to the side of the glass still even an hour later.

The scent is very powerful with scents of citrusy hops and fresh pine cones.

Taste is very good, malty caramel sweetness with some toastiness, quickly consumed by very strong hop flavors combined with a grapefruity cirtus taste.

Moutfeel and Drinkability are both great, and overall great Pale Ale.

Serving type: bottle

10-23-2004 00:10:19 | More by bashiba
Photo of marcobrau
marcobrau

Illinois

4.55/5  rDev +6.6%
look: 4 | smell: 4.5 | taste: 5 | feel: 4 | overall: 4

Wow. It's been too long since I've had this fantastic American Pale Ale. As I poured this beer into a straight-sided pint glass, the huge, piney hop aroma and wonderfully sustaining, lacy foam was the first thing I noticed about this beer. The first sip was full of juicy, sugary and caramel malt flavors laced with heaps of spicy, citrusy hops. The body is fairly thick, but doesn't keep me from taking larger sips. The alcohol does slow me down. I don't recall this beer being so strong. The lasting bitterness stay with you for a long time. The finish is not only quite bitter, but much drier than I remember. (I really like a dry finish.) All the complexities of this beer, the sugary, almost tropical fruit flavors that seem to meld with the citrusy hops and caramel malt are truly wonderful. When this beer is fresh the hops really shine through and almost steal the show. The remarkable complex hoppiness and maltiness of this beer make it really stand out on its own.

Serving type: bottle

10-05-2004 01:31:58 | More by marcobrau
Photo of Boilermaker88
Boilermaker88

California

4.18/5  rDev -2.1%
look: 4.5 | smell: 4.5 | taste: 4 | feel: 3.5 | overall: 4.5

Presented in a 12oz bottle and poured into one of my trusty tulip glasses I reserve for first-time beers. Alpha King had a clear rusty color with some random bubbles lazily drifting to the bottom of a large and durable vanilla colored head. Lots of sticky lace coated the walls as the brew egressed the glass.
Whew, this Americanized pale ale packs some hops! The citrusy hops aroma virtually erupted from the head, easily overpowering a toasty malt aroma. The scents of grapefruit rinds and orange peels were quite enticing but seemed more in keeping with a lot of American IPA's I've sampled. A modest dose of alcohol fumes also was detected.
The first thing I noticed was the abundance of grapefruit-inspired flavor that immediately got to work on my palate. Next came a slathering of sprucy, resinous flavor that lingered long after each taste was swallowed. All the while I kept searching for some indications that malts were present. A mild toasted malt flavor and touch of oak briefly played across the tongue as if running for their lives from a horde of rampaging hops. A faint hint of alcohol bit the throat with each swallow. The feel was lighter and thinner than anticipated and quite dry.
Okay, I'm gonna throw this out: Alpha King may be mis-styled. This brew strikes closer to being an American IPA than a pale ale. The hops character is of such a higher order than the malt aspect as to smell and taste more like a U.S.-bred IPA than a pale ale, American or other. Not that I'm complaining; I love this brew. I've just had a number of IPA's that were similar to Alpha King and not very many pale ales. That said, if you can get the King, do so. If not, work your connections for a trade. Big thanks to qarre for the hook-up!

Serving type: bottle

09-29-2004 18:56:45 | More by Boilermaker88
Photo of profzoom
profzoom

Idaho

4.4/5  rDev +3%
look: 4.5 | smell: 4.5 | taste: 4.5 | feel: 4.5 | overall: 4

Wow, I'd forgotten how much I liked this beer. It reminds me so much of my senior year in college, where my favorite local bar often had Alpha King on tap. Ah, those were the days...

Anywho, on to the review. This brew pours a lovely golden oaky color with a medium-sized head. The smell is absolutely to die for, a sweet and complex aroma of hops, hops, hops! The taste is similarly divine, a sharp, spicy bite with the sweetness of a flower garden. It's a relatively intense experience, and probably not everyone enjoys this fine ale as much as I, but this is one brew I'll be coming back to over and over again.

Serving type: bottle

09-28-2004 03:47:13 | More by profzoom
Photo of BarrelBrother
BarrelBrother

Illinois

3.25/5  rDev -23.9%
look: 2.5 | smell: 3.5 | taste: 3.5 | feel: 2.5 | overall: 3

I'll qualify this by saying Pale Ales aren't my favorite type of brew, but I tried this one after alot of encouraging from my IPA friends and was pleasantly surprised! The taste was very interesting and hoppiness didn't overwhelm the fruit overtones. The aroma caught my interest immeadiately. The bitter finish was quite strong which I know is typical, but not to my liking. If I had to choose a Pale Ale of those I've tasted, I found Alpha King to be quite unusual and worth a try.

Serving type: bottle

09-22-2004 02:43:21 | More by BarrelBrother
Photo of orbitalr0x
orbitalr0x

Illinois

4.58/5  rDev +7.3%
look: 4 | smell: 5 | taste: 4.5 | feel: 4.5 | overall: 4.5

APA + Three Floyd's = one damn fine luscious brew I assume!

This pours from the bottle a lovely deep amber with about a half inch of sticky head. The are even subtle hues of red in the mix. The first smell is freakin amazing. It's like I'm running naked through a beautiful sunny field of ripe hops. Yummy grapefruit and citrus tones tickle my nose along with a wonderful floral bouqet. If my nose could have an orgasm...it'd probably be reachin for a smoke right about now. I could sit here and smell this all night!

The first sip reminds me of why APA is my fave stlye...it tastes like a citrusy hop bomb went off in the bottle. Grapefruit, lemon and orange tones ride on a frothy wave of malt. Alpha King is like an ocean wave where everything is drawn together in perfect harmony only to come crashing down on my tounge and journey into my stomach. Bitterness is in harmonious balance as well...this is a brew that begs to be consumed.

Mouthfeel is wonderful...goes down smooth, not too much carbonation, very easy to drink. The same goes for drinkability...this is going to become one of my new session brews alongside SNPA. I could down these heavenly brews all night. 3 Floyd's deserves much praise for this fine example of the style!

Serving type: bottle

09-14-2004 03:15:04 | More by orbitalr0x
Photo of lampkins
lampkins

Wisconsin

4.1/5  rDev -4%
look: 4 | smell: 4 | taste: 4 | feel: 4 | overall: 4.5

Three Floyds Alpha King a perfect example of a pale ale that is not dominated by a overwhelming presence of alcohol in a beer. The beer pours a copper color that reminds me of a amber ale with a nice head. Beer smells like grape fruit and whole wheat bread. Tast of this beer is something spectacular, the taste of the hops do not dominate this beer and blends smoothly with the malty finish of this beer. It is easy to drink a lot of these beers, but they do catch up with you given the modest ABV. Give this beer a try, you will not be dissapointed.

Serving type: bottle

09-13-2004 01:43:17 | More by lampkins
Photo of lackenhauser
lackenhauser

Maryland

4.1/5  rDev -4%
look: 4 | smell: 4.5 | taste: 4 | feel: 4 | overall: 4

Thanks to BUCKEYENATION for the trade sample. I had tried this ages ago and was not impressed. Poured a nice coppery red color with a damn nice head that remained the whole way down the glass. Wonderful aroma-citrusy,almost spuce like. Big hoppy flavor up front-almost thirst quenchingly bitter if thats possible. Good body-well balanced to the hoppiness. A killer pale ale-more towards an American India Pale to me but a great beer all around. Funny what a second chance will do.

Serving type: bottle

09-12-2004 19:38:59 | More by lackenhauser
Photo of flaminghomer
flaminghomer

Indiana

4.1/5  rDev -4%
look: 4 | smell: 4 | taste: 4 | feel: 4 | overall: 4.5

this is a nice clean crisp pale ale that will knock you on your ass if you do not watch yourself. abv is a little over seven percent but doesn't taste over 5. very little alcohol taste. taste is clean crisp and hoppy. from the things that i read i expected some sort of hop freak show but instead had good hop character which is what i like. wait a minute... it is pretty freakin hoppy. i'm looking forward to trying other three floyds brews.

Serving type: bottle

09-12-2004 05:25:51 | More by flaminghomer
Photo of ppoitras
ppoitras

Massachusetts

4.4/5  rDev +3%
look: 4.5 | smell: 4 | taste: 4.5 | feel: 4.5 | overall: 4.5

12oz bottle purchased as a single somewhere in VA, one of many things gathered at either Vienna Whole Foods, Norm's, or Westpark Wine & Beer.

Poured into an imperial pint glass, formed a 1" frothy beige head over the orangey amber brew. Head hangs around, and lacing is good. Aroma is of piney citrusy hops. Taste is all about the hops, but they aren't dissolving your taste buds, rather massaging them vigorously. Mouthfeel and drinkability are both great. Another reason I wish Three Floyds would branch out their distribution a bit...

Serving type: bottle

09-10-2004 21:56:08 | More by ppoitras
Photo of mntlover
mntlover

Tennessee

4.22/5  rDev -1.2%
look: 4.5 | smell: 4.5 | taste: 4 | feel: 4 | overall: 4.5

Beautiful amber with big fluffy head that leaves thick spider web of lace, whats that floating in my beer hop flowers? Guess its yeast because of the bottle conditioning but judging by the smell hops sound good. Wonderful hop aromas fill the air mostly citrus along with sweet floral hints could be the malt I guess but not a very malt heavy brew. Taste is you guessed it hops more hops along with a good dose of bitterness more IPA like the APA. Alpha King is a very good name because alpha acid is king with this pale ale first pale ale I have had thats bitter enough for a IPA usually other way around IPA that tastes more like a pale ale. Only problem with this beer is lacks malt enough to balance the hops hell I have had more malt in double IPA's that scorch the taste buds with hops then in this beer. Very fine beer for hop lovers wich I am but reduced taste and mouthfeel score by .5 for lack of malt backbone. Otherwise very fine beer very drinkable if you like hops try it you will like it says Sam. I would drink it in a box I would drink it with a fox.

Serving type: bottle

09-08-2004 14:11:11 | More by mntlover
Photo of mobyfann
mobyfann

Ohio

4.45/5  rDev +4.2%
look: 4.5 | smell: 4.5 | taste: 4.5 | feel: 4 | overall: 4.5

Paid $8.99 for a 6-pack from the Jungle...

The appearence is one to be noted: dark amber base with a medium off-white head, solid retention and real nic elacing effects make this a worthy appearence beer. With beauty comes smell, I would personally dip a car freshner in this beer and hang it in my car, the aroma is packed with a nice garden of hops touched with a sprinkle of some malty sweets...

With the great smell comes a great taste. Full flavored, I will compare this a nose ahead of the Magic Hat Hi.P.A. I first had a month ago because it resembles it so much. The taste explodes you mouth with that before mentioned garden of hops and on this journey you will also notice the fruits to you r left consisting of lemons and oranges... The mouthfeel is the low point of the beer, however it is still solid. When I take my gulp there is a little harshness, however it's still a nice ride. OK Drinkability, this is a 7.35% right??? One would not detect any alcohol from this whatsoever. However not a session beer, minus half-point.

Fianl Thought: Well now, Three Floyds is making a case against Great Lakes for best Midwest brewery... what's that... is that a tear... running down my face??? I love beer!

Serving type: bottle

09-07-2004 02:30:12 | More by mobyfann
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FormatKid

Tennessee

4.6/5  rDev +7.7%
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.

Serving type: bottle

09-05-2004 02:02:19 | More by FormatKid
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garthwaite

Virginia

4.5/5  rDev +5.4%
look: 4 | smell: 4 | taste: 5 | feel: 3.5 | overall: 4.5

Sampled from a 12 oz bottle. Pours a hazy amber with a big, enticing aroma of grapefruit & mild background sweetness. In the mouth, this is very bitter & damn tasty. Big grapefruit throughout & some light pine. Caramel malt lays a foundation, but is thoroughly dominated by the brew's hoppiness. Medium bodied with active carbonation. Lightly sweet & moderately acidic, this brew finishes with more strong bitterness. A damn good pale ale.

Serving type: bottle

09-03-2004 19:44:52 | More by garthwaite
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frazbri

Ohio

4.22/5  rDev -1.2%
look: 4.5 | smell: 4.5 | taste: 4 | feel: 4 | overall: 4.5

Poured a clear mahogony topped with a frothy cream head. Head never completely dissappears from the glass. Aroma starts with a wiff of pine and a floral accent. Carbonation is low to moderate. The taste blankets the tongue with hops, but there is some malty sweetness underneath.

If you are a hophead, this is a must have, but don't rule this out if you aren't. For a beer with this kind of hop bitterness, it is very drinkable.

Serving type: bottle

09-02-2004 02:30:56 | More by frazbri
Alpha King Pale Ale from Three Floyds Brewing Co. & Brewpub
95 out of 100 based on 4,236 ratings.