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Alpha King - Three Floyds Brewing Co. & Brewpub

Not Rated.
Alpha KingAlpha King

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

5,365 Ratings
THE BROS
93
outstanding

(view ratings)
Ratings: 5,365
Reviews: 1,691
rAvg: 4.26
pDev: 9.15%
Wants: 879
Gots: 649 | FT: 24
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:
A bold yet balanced American Pale Ale with slight caramel sweetness and aggressive citrus hoppiness. This is our flagship beer.

68 IBU

(Beer added by: BeerAdvocate on 07-23-2000)
Beer: Ratings & Reviews
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Ratings: 5,365 | Reviews: 1,691 | Display Reviews Only:
Photo of kaimcm
4.22/5  rDev -0.9%
look: 4 | smell: 4 | taste: 4.5 | feel: 4 | overall: 4

12oz bottle poured into a pint glass

A: nice hazy orange honeyed body with a bubble dusting on top. soapy white ring around the edge.

S: buried, but dank herbal hop profile, dry grass, plenty of orange/grapefruit and citrus. a dense nose of hops that smells wet and fresh.

T/M: dry and grassy up front, followed by a medium body and a touch of sugar. grapefruit, citrus, soft and stinky cheese. more husky grain and bread. finishes with a lingering dryness and grainy mouthfeel. coating but coarse. carbonation is crisp and lively.

D: very enjoyable. very very enjoyable. 6% is a bit high for such a drinkable and flavorful brew. wish i could get all the time, would be happy to purchase repeatedly. cheers.

thanks jamie.

Photo of nullforge
4.53/5  rDev +6.3%
look: 4 | smell: 4.5 | taste: 4.5 | feel: 4 | overall: 5

Hazy orange-tinted deep amber color. Pours with a one finger orange-tinted head that shortly collapses to a collar. Leaves a fairly sticky lace on the glass. The nose contains piney and citrusy hops, delicately sweetened by malt. A hint of mango can also be found. The taste offers caramel and pale malt sweetness that balances the bitterness while it lasts. The piney and citrusy hops detected in the nose dominate the taste with a strong hop bite. A hint of peach in the background. Bitterness builds into the finish with the hops becoming crisp and herbal. Body is medium. Beer feels slick on the tongue. Malt could be a bit more chewy though. Overall, it's a delicious beer that left me wanting more.

Photo of baos
4.83/5  rDev +13.4%
look: 4.5 | smell: 5 | taste: 5 | feel: 4.5 | overall: 4.5

A: Two fingers in my favorite Trappist glass, poured it from a bottle. A very nice dark caramel color.

S: Hops hit you hard. An awesome floral aroma that perks up your ears and make you smile. Citrusy, juniper bush, catnip.

T: Awesome hoppy bang. Key lime peels, Spicewood leaves, and lemon balm leaves. I love this beer. I remember tasting it at a beer tasting in Bloomington, Indiana, and I ended up walking around with their pitcher drinking from it and throwing a handful of change in the the tuba of the German brass band that was playing there.

M: Very nice to roll around your mouth leaves the mouth a bit oily.

D: A bit potent, but i could drink this beer all night. Gets better setting in your glass and getting warmer, but is really good super chilled as well.

Photo of MCDuhamel
4.35/5  rDev +2.1%
look: 2.5 | smell: 4.5 | taste: 4.5 | feel: 4 | overall: 4.5

Poured from a 12 ounce bottle at fridge temperature into a Sam Adams branded special pub glass.

A: Poured moderately aggressively, it formed a brief head that dissipated to a mere ring very quickly, leaving very light lacing on the glass. Dark copper, almost light brown in appearance, vaguely murky, Moderate carbonation visible.

S: Strong note of American hops, probably Cascade, with some malt underlying the nose as well. Hoppy, but not out of balance

T: Hop flavors predominate at first, with a definite grapefruit note. This yields into a toffee-like sweetness then a lingering dry and citrusy finish. Throughout, noticeable but not heavy-handed carbonation provides excellent balance.

M: Medium mouthfeel. The beer has some weight on the tongue, but the carbonation prevents it from being too much.

D: Very drinkable; I could easily drink several without growing tired of it.

Overall: This is an excellent American pale ale, marred only by poor head retention.

Photo of Monkeyknife
4.65/5  rDev +9.2%
look: 4 | smell: 4.5 | taste: 5 | feel: 4 | overall: 4.5

Poured from the bottle a slightly hazy deep copper with a creamy beige head and nice lacing.

A sweet maltiness and a burst of spicy hops and pine await those put it to their nose.

A perfect combination that plays off the aroma. The tastes includes the balance of the malts and the bitterness of the hops with their spice and pine.

Medium bodied and carbonated.

This is an incredible APA and quickly became one of my favorites. Enjoy.

Photo of Atron67
4.55/5  rDev +6.8%
look: 4.5 | smell: 5 | taste: 4.5 | feel: 4 | overall: 4.5

A- Poured a copper clear color with an inch of off-white head. It lasted a reasonable length, and left big lacing
S- Big Floral hops bursting from my snifter glass, smells delicious
T- Burst of sharp bitter hops all over the place, a solid malt background provides a nice base, although they are deep below the hops, leaves a slowly lingering hop bitterness as it leaves your throat
M- medium body with a sharp carbonation
D- very high, delicious

Photo of sessycuban
4.33/5  rDev +1.6%
look: 4 | smell: 4.5 | taste: 4.5 | feel: 4 | overall: 4

A - The beer pours a light amber color with a very small off-white head.
The head does not retain well and you find very little lacing.

S - I smell a strong hop presence, although not overwhelming. I'm also getting some caramel malts as well.

T - The citrus flavor takes over this beer but it's balanced out nicely by the malts that are more apparent as the beer warms.

M - The beer has a medium body. It coats quite well for the style.

D - Supremely drinkable. I could have one of these every day. The only problem is, of course, that Three Floyds does not distribute to SoCal.

Photo of marksto
4.28/5  rDev +0.5%
look: 3 | smell: 4 | taste: 4.5 | feel: 4 | overall: 4.5

Pours medium amber and very clear, with a thin head that falls rather quickly. Nose has lots of spicy hops, citrus and pine, and a noticible malt sweetness. Flavor is very nice, as it has an excellent complexity that sets aside the better APA's. The complexity seems to comes predominately from the hop character - bitterness and flavor interplay really nicely, and are multi-dimensional, with a nice carmel and biscuit maltiness lingering in the backgound.

An excellent APA, worth seeking out.

Photo of dfried
4.43/5  rDev +4%
look: 4 | smell: 4.5 | taste: 4.5 | feel: 4 | overall: 4.5

Deep amber and caramelly in color, thin off white cap for a head. The hop aroma jumped out of the bottle upon popping the cap. After the pour I noticed a lot of herbal and cirtusy hops, orange rind and grapefruit, as well as some floral notes. Significant biscuity and caramelly malt backbone too.

The taste had quite the bitter bite, but far from unpleasant, for a pale ale upon the first sip, definitely the alpha-acid King. Then a rush of citrusy hop flavors comes at you, oranges, grapefruits, and lemons. Some other fruity notes show up like pears and peaches, but its definitely more citrusy than anything. Great citrusy aftertaste lingers forever. Decent malty backbone of caramel and brown sugar, more than most American PAs, but then again there needs to be since there is more hops than in most APAs.

Overall: top shelf APA. This beer walks the line of IPA and PA as far as hoppiness goes. A bit heavier on flavors than most APAs (like thats a problem) but is still pretty much as drinkable as them. Outsanding.

Photo of RixBeer
4.5/5  rDev +5.6%
look: 4.5 | smell: 4 | taste: 4.5 | feel: 4.5 | overall: 5

Appearance - Hazy light amber color with a foamy off-white head.
No real retention and lacing.

Smell - Nice Citrus hop presence.

Taste - Sweet and Hoppy with a nice hop after taste.

Mouthfeel - Mouth filling without over doing it. If you like hops this beer will fill your mouth with the flavor and not let go till after it's down your gullet

Drinkability - I'm very glad I have many more of these!!!!

Photo of stereosforgeeks
4.43/5  rDev +4%
look: 4 | smell: 4.5 | taste: 4.5 | feel: 4 | overall: 4.5

Appearance - Hazy light amber color with a foamy off-white head.
Decent retention and lacing.

Smell - Nice hop presence. Some sweet caramel malts as well.

Taste - Starts sweet from the caramel malts then the citrus hops take hold and dont let go. The caramel comes back into the mix later. It's a nice combination.

Mouthfeel - Medium/Thick body. Slides nicely accross the palate.

Drinkability - I wish this was more plentiful in my area.

Photo of wilwfu
4.88/5  rDev +14.6%
look: 4.5 | smell: 5 | taste: 5 | feel: 4 | overall: 5

Dark Copper in color, smells like a good southern biscut, but earthier... coming from the hops. The taste and mouthfeel go hand in hand. It's a two stage beer, hops vs malts, with each trying to steal the stage from the other, yet the juxtaposition of the two holds it all together. It has a natural sweetness like maple syrup.

This beer is uber drinkable and is a fantastic, complex beer that will not, no matter how hard you try, taste the same everytime. That is not because it's inconsistent between brewings, but rather because the taste will conjur up different memories and imagery everytime... it's that good.

Photo of Halcyondays
4.72/5  rDev +10.8%
look: 4.5 | smell: 4 | taste: 5 | feel: 4.5 | overall: 5

12 oz. bottle,

A: Deep cloudy amber, with a thick white head which lasts the glass long.

S: Piney hops mostly, some citrus, but also toffee malts make an appearance, very balanced.

T: The taste is exceptional. This is by far my favorite American Pale Ale, as Tony Kornheiser would say - "That's it, that's the list!" I love Sierra Nevada Pale Ale, but this is its superior. Delicious pink grapefruit coats the tongue, with a perfect malt backbone to hold it together. Fabulous.

M: Chewy bitterness, citrus hops abound, that extra kick of hops at the end adds to its smoothness and helps keep its body together through the finish.

D: The greatest APA that i've tried so far, it's just a shame I can't get it very often, an American craft brewing classic.

Photo of BattleRoadBrewer
3.83/5  rDev -10.1%
look: 3 | smell: 4.5 | taste: 3.5 | feel: 4 | overall: 4

Poured into a standard pint from 12 oz amber bottle at about 35F.

Attractive pour, a little bit hazy, orangish amber, slight floaters. Leaves good lacing.

Aroma is a hit of potent hops, a bit piney, bit floral, a lot citrus.

Citrus hop flavor dominates the malts, but the beer is still bold on both counts.

Mouthfeel is slick, a bit effervescent, appropriately bitter.

This is definitely an IPA in Pale Ale clothing. A great beer.

Photo of number1bum
4.68/5  rDev +9.9%
look: 4 | smell: 5 | taste: 4.5 | feel: 4.5 | overall: 5

Thanks to BeerTruth for this one.

Pours a slightly hazy amber with one finger of light beige head. Head diminishes slowly leaving just a thin film of lace. Some blotchy stick hugs the glass as it goes down.

You don't have to get too close to catch a whiff of this one. Awesome hop aromas of citrus, pineapple, pine and some floral notes. Smells like hop nectar and I can't wait to taste it. What else should the smell do other than make you want to drink it? Divine.

Taste is a wonderful journey of complex hop deliciousness. Starts out super fruity with some sweet malt there, as well. Then comes the pine, some more grapefruit and in creeps some hop bitterness. Finishes slightly bitter with the malt backbone coming back into the picture to provide some balance. Taste is definitely dominated by hops, but it's oh so good.

Mouthfeel is medium-bodied and a little bit chewy. Carobnation is very subdued, and overall it's very smooth and almost too easy to drink. Awesome.

Photo of jaxon53
4.43/5  rDev +4%
look: 4 | smell: 4.5 | taste: 4.5 | feel: 4 | overall: 4.5

Recieved from brandoman63 from the brews-n-tunes summer '07 tour. Served slightly chilled in a pint glass from a twelve ounce bottle. Poured a deep copper orange , almost brown color. A thick, tight, two finger off-white head formed with a rather easy pour. Awesome nose on this one, very bitter hop aroma, grapefruit, pine, pineapple, with a nice balancing malt aroma to it. Taste was more of the same. Piney hops, mild citrus fruit notes, and somewhat grainy. Very well balanced in my opinion, mild carbonation, and some well hidden alcohol. Mouthfeel was full bodied, thick, and pleasant. Drinkability was great. An easy beer to sit down and enjoy.

Photo of TexIndy
4.18/5  rDev -1.9%
look: 4.5 | smell: 4.5 | taste: 4 | feel: 4.5 | overall: 4

Got in a care package from my now favorite brother-in-law along with Dreadnaught and Expedition Stout. Poured from a 12oz bottle with no dating system. Was a hazy copper color with a few bits of yeast floating in there. Had a decent head that settled to a thin film with good lacing. The smell was very hoppy and citric (either grapefruit or tangering). Really had more of a IPA smell than an APA as mentioned in other reviews. Definitely set the table for what to expect. The taste was also really good and more along an IPA than APA line. Good hops, good citric but had a slightly too bitter finish for me. Overall, an excellent beer and recommend trying. (4, RB, T, Y)

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

thanks to malcontent for the opportunity.

A: pours a dark copper orange color with a 1.5 finger beige head. Good lacing. 4

S: citrus notes, and a good hop profile. the malt is quite evident too. 4

T: A very refreshing pale ale. there's a lot of malt to make up for the hoppiness. 4

M: the hops sting quite a bit. medium body. good carbonation. 4

D: I could drink a lot of these. But I wouldn't because they're so hard for me to get that I only drink one at a time.

Personally, I think dreadnaught kicks this one's ass in taste. This is still a very nice and refreshing pale ale though.

Photo of mdm46410
4.33/5  rDev +1.6%
look: 4 | smell: 4 | taste: 4.5 | feel: 4 | overall: 4.5

Poured from a 12oz bottle into a pint glass. This beer poured a hazy, dark amber/copper color with a minimal tan head that faded slowly, leaving a bit of light lace. The aroma is something to behold. It consisted of grapefruit, peach, and roasted malt. Just a beautiful, big citrus/floral hop experience. The flavor is more of the same. Nice hop bitterness, balanced out by the roasted malts and some citrus sweetness. The beer has minimal carbonation with a medium to full-body. It doesn’t get much better than this. A must try from Three Floyds!

Photo of BeerTruth
4.18/5  rDev -1.9%
look: 4.5 | smell: 4 | taste: 4 | feel: 4.5 | overall: 4.5

Thanks to nchrist13 and tpd975 for this one!

12 oz. bottle poured into a pint glass.

Pours a somewhat murky burnt copper with a very generous two fingered off white head that takes a good while to die down to a nice lacing. Stickiness is very good, stays all over. Smell has alot of grapefuit, pine, and floral aromas in the nose. Extremely crisp odor. Flavor is so balanced. Starts off with the grapefruit then the pale malt comes through and blances it out so well. Mouthfeel is medium bodied with a fair amount of carbonation. So clean in the mouth. Drinkability is amazing, this is a pale ale? I'm thinking more like an IPA but who cares about labels, this beer is amazing.

Photo of zeff80
4.5/5  rDev +5.6%
look: 3.5 | smell: 4.5 | taste: 4.5 | feel: 4 | overall: 5

A - Poured out a burgandy/amber color with a small, short-lived, white head. It left very nice lace.

S - It smelled strongly of citrus. Also, notes of grass, malt and sweetness.

T - It tasted very hoppy (Cascade). Also, a good dose of bitterness. The roasted malt flavor was outstanding, too.

M - It was crisp and sharp. A medium-bodied beer.

D - This truly is an outstanding tasting APA. I was surprised at the lackluster appearance, but maybe that was a fluke.

Photo of MiScusi
4.1/5  rDev -3.8%
look: 4 | smell: 4 | taste: 4 | feel: 4 | overall: 4.5

The cap actually took a bit of effort to pry off, it was on there pretty well, and released quite a large hiss when it did come off. It poured a deep orange, almost clear, but ever so slightly hazy. The head picked up quite some steam in the last 1/3 of the pour, forming a couple finger, semi-rocky head, though it did dwindle down into a cap fairly fast. Good lacing was left on the glass as well.

The aroma was of fruity citrus, plain and simple. The hops exert themselves very nicely. The taste is a punch of juicy berry and citrus at the beginning that transitions ever so nicely into pine at the end. No lingering bitterness present here.

The mouthfeel was ok. This bottle was well carbonated but the carbonation only exerts itself on the very tip of the tongue at the start of each sip. Towards the back end it feels a bit too smooth, if that's possible, but still good overall. Just a fantastically flavorful pale ale without being too over-the-top for the style. I was leery about the hype, not having tried anything from Three Floyd's before, but this was superb.
4.5 / 4.5 / 5 / 4 / 4.5
___

5-17-08
Just had another bottle last night. I'm not as big on this beer now as I was when I originally had it. It's good. It's pretty tasty, but it's more like an interestingly hopped amber ale. Easy to drink though.
Ratings adjusted to:
4 / 4 / 4 / 4 / 4.5

Photo of tpd975
4.55/5  rDev +6.8%
look: 4.5 | smell: 4.5 | taste: 4.5 | feel: 4 | overall: 5

Yet another thanks to my brother for smuggling this baby across state lines and into Florida.

A: A lovely rusty amber color with a nice 2 finger head that disappers to nearly nothing. Left lacing all the way down the glass; Beautiful.

S: Hops are yelling at me from the bottom of this glass. Grass, Pine, and citrus come wafting from this pint.

T: This brew is dominated by hops and pine. It has a slight citrus finish that makes it very refreshing.

M: This baby is pretty hoppy for a regular IPA. The mouthfeel is medium but the finish is oh so refreshing.

D: Yep! This baby goes down like a champ. I get as much as I can via the brother pipeline on his trips to Florida, but not enough to make it regularly sessionable. If it were this would be my session beer.

Overall: Come on its 3 Floyds you know it has to be great. What I like about this beer is it pushes the edge for IPA's. It has enough hops to push it on the verge of a DIPA without going too far. The taste is wonderful and they go down sooo smootly. I proclaim this beer sessionable and great!

Photo of jasonpeckins32
4.1/5  rDev -3.8%
look: 4 | smell: 4 | taste: 4 | feel: 5 | overall: 4

Bold, bronze in color with a small, cream-colored head. A slight haze caused by bottle conditioning (atleast thats what the bottle told me).

A boldly citrusy aroma. Hops, hops, and hops.

Similar to the smell, the flavor is huge on citrus hops. A bit piney. Really an outstanding flavor. Good stuff, real good stuff.

Excellent, ok heck, perfect mouthfeel for this beer. Just a touch over medium-bodied with superb carbonation. Hoppy, clean, and refreshing.

Great drinkability here, but like most pale ales in my diet these days, a couple in a row may be the max.

Photo of tapman
3.58/5  rDev -16%
look: 3 | smell: 4 | taste: 3.5 | feel: 3.5 | overall: 3.5

I get that the 3Fs make decent brews, but why the hefty price tag for the big bottles? Oh well, as for their more affordable Alpha King...

Pours rusty-red and orange hues towards the lighter bottom of the glass. Not much head at 1 finger, but the lacing sticks with it pretty well.

The aromas are citrus and grass with hints of pomegranate for that not-too-sweet fruitiness.

I believe the hops I'm getting are cascade, the most abundant American hop unless I am mistaken then please tell me. Earthy/grassy tartness with a bit of an alcohol sting. There is a sea-saltiness that compliments the bread-like malt back.

The carbonation is crispy. Overall the beer is creamy and smooth with a stingy finish.

Quite decent. I could enjoy 2-3 of these before the taste buds need a break from being worked so hard. I look forward to trying the $17 bottles one day, but for now this will do just fine.

Alpha King from Three Floyds Brewing Co. & Brewpub
95 out of 100 based on 5,365 ratings.