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Alpha King - 3 Floyds Brewing Co.

Not Rated.
Alpha KingAlpha King

Educational use only; do not reuse.

1,742 Reviews

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Reviews: 1,742
Hads: 5,937
Avg: 4.26
pDev: 16.67%
Wants: 931
Gots: 997 | 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: Reviews & Ratings
Sort by:  Recent | High | Low | Top Raters | Read the Alström Bros Beer Reviews and Beer Ratings of Alpha King Alström Bros
Reviews: 1,742 | Hads: 5,937
Photo of jtothamo
4.3/5  rDev +0.9%
look: 4 | smell: 4 | taste: 4.5 | feel: 4 | overall: 4.5

Normally, when I sit down at my favorite pub, the bartendar knows that I will order one of two beers. But, this past week, I was feeling a bit bold and decided to embark on an adventure and have only consumed beers that I have not had before (or in quite some time). While on this adventure, I found myself into a beautifully poured pint of Alpha King.

A- A cloudy, light copper color. A nice, airy small head that quickly fell.

S- Hops were quite noticable- then took in a fruity and floral aroma and something that reminded me of being in the woods.

T- I think the fruity smell influenced my ability to taste this beer. So, a decent amount of fruit and hops on the front end...a bit pine-y on the back.

M- Low carbonation- easy but somewhat dull.

D- Delicious!

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

Received this puppy from Beereality in a trade. Thanks amigo!

Appearance: Rusty copper orange with little head or lacing.

Smell: Refreshing and delicious! More hop presence than I was expecting from a Pale Ale. Some grapefruit and a slight pine/floral hop smell.

Taste: Amazingly crisp and refreshing with a wonderful hop presence. Not overpowering, but the hops do grab your attention.

Mouthfeel: low carbonation but still an easy drinker.

Drinkability: doesn't get any easier to drink than this. This would go in my permanent rotation if it was readily available on the east coast.

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Photo of thekevlarkid
4.36/5  rDev +2.3%
look: 5 | smell: 4 | taste: 4.5 | feel: 4 | overall: 4.5

Sampled this six pack while lost in Southern Indiana. Out of the bottle it poured a copper color with some mandarin highlights around the edges. The off white head was fluffy, laced well and retained well too. Great looking brew. The aroma was bright and hoppy, lots of citrus, some floral notes and slightly resinous. The taste was equally spot-on for the style, first a bitter hop bite followed by grapefruit and lemon zest. Behind that was the deeper malt balance, biscuity and solid along with some pine. As I continued to sample it the hops developed more nuances, orange zest, kumquat and hemp or it's smokable cousin. Quite complex and yet approachable like that cute, late 20's, school-teacher you want to chat up at the end of the bar. The mouthfeel was smooth, medium bodied and it finishes crisp. Like the school teacher, glad I took this one home.

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

Hazy copper body topped by small beige head. Aroma is medium sweet, grapefruit. Taste is grapefruit, medium sweet, fairly intense bitterness. Still, the sweetness lends decent balance to the hops. Medium body. Nice hoppy ale. A little fruity, nice finish. Another great beer from Three Floyds.

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Photo of waltonc
4.18/5  rDev -1.9%
look: 4 | smell: 3.5 | taste: 4.5 | feel: 4 | overall: 4.5

This is a really tasty pale ale. Often I am bored by pales and feel little motivation to drink them. Alpha King is certainly an exception. Serious malt foundation and serious hops. Though the hops are well balanced against the malt flavors and don't drown the flavor. If you told me this was an east coast IPA, I wouldn't question it. Regardless of labels, this is a great one.

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

A: Nice pale amber color, almost clear but with a minimal haze. Head is a decent foamy off white color that dissipates at an average speed leaving a nice blanket on the surface. Lacing is also fairly good, leaving some sticky curtains around the sides.

S: Smells like a winner to me, citrus abound, slightly resinous, malt sweetness mixed with a nice hop bitterness. Not as aromatic and mouth watering as Gumballhead, but nonetheless still a great aroma all around.

T: Taste starts off with a bitter hop bite, but nothing outrageous...just a quick blast of resinous hops to set the stage, followed by a melody of citrus flavors and then a sweeter caramel like malt finish to round it out.

M: Carbonation, like almost all FFF beers, is always just right. Crisp, refreshing drink. This is my first meal of the day :) Goes down real easy. Smooth taste and creamy feel near the end.

D: As far as Pale Ale's go this is right up there. Maybe I'm partial to the brewery after trying most of their stuff and being thoroughly impressed, but what can I say, I like the way FFF makes beer. Highly drinkable.

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Photo of BigJim5021
4.35/5  rDev +2.1%
look: 4 | smell: 4 | taste: 4.5 | feel: 4.5 | overall: 4.5

It pours copper colored with an off-white head and good lacing. We're off to a good start.

The smell isn't terribly strong, but some nice floral hops greet you when you take a whiff. And is that a hint of sweet maltiness I detect?

The flavor? Holy shit. This is the hoppiest APA (or any non-IPA pale ale) I've ever tasted. The best part is, it even has a touch of maltiness in the finish. The upfront, however, is all hops. Floral and citrusy, and they accompany the minor malt in the finish with some great hop bitterness. If I was blindfolded, there's no way that I would think that this was anything else but an IPA.

The mouthfeel is a touch beyond medium-bodied. It's not chewy, but it's thicker than your average pale ale. I dig it.

I'm definitely going to have to add this to the regular beer rotation from here on out. Three Floyd's continues to make a fan out of me. This surpasses Robert the Bruce as my favorite amongst their kickass brands.

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Photo of Yesac
4.42/5  rDev +3.8%
look: 4 | smell: 4.5 | taste: 4.5 | feel: 4 | overall: 4.5

Got this on trade from jwinship83 - thanks!

A - Pours a hazy copper/orange. Small off-white head that stays throughout the glass.

S - Floral aroma with strong citrus hops. Very crisp smelling.

T - Where the malts at? Hop dominance up front, but without the typical bitterness, they are sweet and crisp. Subtle malt finish.

M - Medium body, slightly sticky sweet hop aftertaste.

D - So crisp and fresh tasting, easy drinker here. Excellent APA.

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

poured from a growler. floral hop scents up front. slightly malty with bitter hop finish, more towards the citrus. very floral and slightly sweet. smooth in the mouth with light carbonation, probably because i poured it straight into the glass. very drinkable!

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Photo of maximum12
4.43/5  rDev +4%
look: 4.5 | smell: 4 | taste: 4.5 | feel: 4 | overall: 5

I have to admit that I'm not an American Pale Ale fan. Never found one I cared for much, but need a few bottles for a trade & figured I'd try one of the leftovers.

Poured a beautiful, almost glowing bronze with a cool swirling head, with a pungent head of wheat & hops. Mildly promising.

This beer rocks. Tastes great. There's a nice acidic bite to it with a bit of saccharine sweetness at the end that balances out very nicely.

Great, light, not filling, easy-drinking, mother of a beer. I will have this again. I'm rueing that I am going to have to send a couple of bottles of this puppy away!

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Photo of jraycee
4.42/5  rDev +3.8%
look: 4 | smell: 4.5 | taste: 4.5 | feel: 4 | overall: 4.5

Pours a beautiful clear amber with a small head.
Smell is over he top fruity hops, like tangelos from my christmas stocking.
Taste is great light malt base followed quickly by citrus, honeysuckle, pine bark and lingering bitterness hiding some sweet flowers.
Good mouthfeel. If it was a little less watery and slick it would be perfection. I'm stretching here cause, its close.
This beer is definitely sessionable. I think my fiance will drink all of mine though, so someone send me more! Daddy like!

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Photo of littlekidlover
4.57/5  rDev +7.3%
look: 4.5 | smell: 5 | taste: 4.5 | feel: 4 | overall: 4.5

The color is a medium amber, a little bit darker than your average APA. Had a 1 finger head that disappeared quickly, lacing was minimal. There is a walloping hop nose of grapefruit, pine, and flowery esters. My friend calls this "Kind bud beer". The taste is mostly hops, spicy, citrus, yet balanced Medium to light body with a little carbonation. Very drinkable, possibly sessionable, but I usually like to switch up my beer anyway.

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Photo of ckeegan04
4.06/5  rDev -4.7%
look: 5 | smell: 4 | taste: 4 | feel: 4 | overall: 4

Received from mikereaser. Thanks!

A - Cloudy orange/brown color with huge khaki head. Excellent retention and lacing.

S - Burnt caramel and citrusy/tropical hop juice. The malts are much stronger in the nose than I expected from all the hop-head hype I have heard.

T - Biscuity and caramel sweetness up front. A citrusy hop taste comes through but is not as strong as I anticipated. Finishes with a somewhat grainy taste.

M/D - Medium to full bodied and very smooth. A passable beer but certainly not living up to the hype.

Not sure if something happened to this bottle, but my first FFF experience was certainly a let down. I will definitely give this one another try down the road though.

Update: Just had what I know to be relatively fresh and it was much better. Still not living up to the hype, but the citrusy nose is very clear and strong and then taste is much hoppier. A very solid bre.

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Photo of toolbrew
4.57/5  rDev +7.3%
look: 4 | smell: 4.5 | taste: 4.5 | feel: 4.5 | overall: 5

Poured from a 12oz bottle with the most difficult cap to take off that I've ever had to do - I was using a lighter though. Poured a slightly hazy deep copper color with a nice off-white head. Decent head retention and some lacing on the glass.

Hoppy aroma - I can detect maybe some citrus (lemon) and some grassy notes.

Sweet and crisp taste with a nice hop finish.

Goes down very well. Get a sharp attack on the roof of the mouth that dissipates quickly, but then comes back slightly as an aftertaste.

A very drinkable beer. I have enjoyed this one many times and only wish they distributed to Michigan.

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Photo of PatronWizard
4.05/5  rDev -4.9%
look: 4 | smell: 4 | taste: 4 | feel: 3.5 | overall: 4.5

Thanks to Stan the Man at Lone Hill Liqour. Was fairly excited to try a pale ale that made the BA Top 100.

Light copper bronze. Big bubbled frothy white head sits atop a sea of tiny replenishing bubbles. This one is lively.

Not too strong in the nose, but hops are there alright.

Great pale ale. I may have been drinking too many DIPAs lately to fully appreciate this little guy, but definitely good.

Could drink a ton of these.

Overall: great pale ale

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Photo of OlieIPA
3.45/5  rDev -19%
look: 3.5 | smell: 3.5 | taste: 3 | feel: 4 | overall: 4

A: Orange and hazy with good head. Not much lacing.

S: Sweet and hoppy; very typical

T: Syrup like taste with a light bitter finish. Couldn't pin-point out any distinct flavors...but perhaps a honey like sweetness.

M: Light body and carbonation; just about perfect for this type of beer.

D: Could drink all night if needed.

Overall: A good beer...not great. One of the better pale ales I have tasted.

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Photo of Nesued
4.25/5  rDev -0.2%
look: 4 | smell: 4 | taste: 4.5 | feel: 4.5 | overall: 4

After having reviewed Avery's Maharaja, I thought my taste buds were primed to pay my respects to the Alpha King. I picked up a six-pack on a trip to Indy, and have been holding them for...heck, I don't know...

Appearance - Light amber in coloring, no haze. The carbonation is very fine, supporting a slight ring. Lacing is minimal.

Smell - After reading several reviews, I was expecting the typical "grapefruit/hop bomb" nose. Not the case with this one. Minor citrus nose. Slight grassy and "fresh feel nose" is about the best I can describe.

Taste - Starting from the end, nice dry finish. Well done. This could have hindered the acceptance of this brew, but thankfully the need for balance was well considered. Good malt sweetness middle adds to the profile with little hop "stickyness" hindering the taste. The initial presentation was again well balanced. I hang on this word (i.e. "balanced") for the simple reason that it is far easier to err on the side of a hop-bomb than to present a well-balanced offering.

Mouthfeel - Smooth and mellow, considering the potential. Very nicely balanced with the typical hop bite absent. Kudos to those who understand the role malt plays in the overall profile.

Drinkability - What shall I do with my remaining 5 bottles? Drink them seems in order. Very nice offering and approachable for someone who isn't a hop-head. Nicely balanced and well presented.

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Photo of OWSLEY069
4.22/5  rDev -0.9%
look: 4 | smell: 4.5 | taste: 4 | feel: 4 | overall: 4.5

Pours a clean copper color with a white head. In the the aroma, big citrus/ grapefruity hops. In the taste, sweet, grapefruity hops and a nice balanceing maltiness. A small bite and medium mouthfeel, with a citrus/ grapefruity hops in the aftertaste. Big hops and mellow for a pale, easy to drink.

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Photo of Reagan1984
4.3/5  rDev +0.9%
look: 4 | smell: 4 | taste: 4.5 | feel: 4 | overall: 4.5

Enjoyed this beer on tap at Hopleaf in Chicago.

Really enjoyed it. My first impression was that it reminded me of a "hopped UP" Pete's Wicked Ale from the old days. (It's been a while since I've had Pete's and this is meant as a compliment)

Came with a thin but fairly creamy head that did show some resilience. Mostly clear with an Orange Amber color. Very nice lacing.

Aroma was of Citrus and some other fruits. Pineapple maybe??

Taste was excellent and very well balanced. Deep flavor and one that was nicely complex. A lot going on here with the different fruit flavors. The finish was surprising dry but did work with the flavor profile. Nice hop assertiveness but not overly done for an APA.

Light to light/medium body and very drinkable. I was in Chicago on business and wanted to sample a few local brews. If not for that, I would have enjoyed several of these throughout the night.

I'll be back for more of this one

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Photo of tayner
3.5/5  rDev -17.8%
look: 3.5 | smell: 3.5 | taste: 3.5 | feel: 3.5 | overall: 3.5

12 oz bottle courtesy of buckeyenation, thanks!

Medium nut brown color with a very sticky white head and lots of lacing

Smell is sweet malt and hops of a citrus grapefruit pith in nature.

taste is green. Lots of hot hop oils, bitter, grassy, and pretty unbalanced. Not enough malt backbone to stand up to the hop making it, IMO, a pale ale hop bomb.

mouthfeel is oily but very well carbonated. even with the great carbonation this one was still pretty mouth coating.

It was easy to drink, would have been more enjoyable if it had a bit more maltiness to balance it some.

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Photo of jwc215
4.54/5  rDev +6.6%
look: 4 | smell: 5 | taste: 4.5 | feel: 4 | overall: 4.5

Thanks to jcwattsrugger for this one!

Pours dark amber with a thin white head. Some lacing sticks.

The smell is of mega alpha hops - citric/piney/earthy/leafy. This is an APA?? Smells like an IPA - vey hoppy - and nicely done, to boot (to say the least).

The taste is citric/piney with balancing sweet malt (hoppy APA/more balanced IPA border). Some acidity. Rounded bitterness comes through in the finish.

The body is slightly thinner than expected - still, it's pretty chewy and medium bodied. Smooth.

A hop-head's version of a pale ale, for sure! And nicely done, Firm malt backbone keeps the hops tied in nicely. A goodie!

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Photo of thethrone
3.88/5  rDev -8.9%
look: 4 | smell: 3.5 | taste: 4 | feel: 4 | overall: 4

A - Pours a deep copper with small white head which quickly disappeared into a thin ring.

S - Smells of pine, and caramel malt. Also a hint of fruity sourness creeps in at the end.

T - Subdued hop flavor, with a malty backbone.

M - Medium body, very smooth, not a lot of carbonation.

D - I get the impression that the bottle I had didn't hold up as well as most, since it is missing the same hoppy profile most others are talking about. Still a great brew, but I would be curious to try it again fresh for comparison.

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

12 oz bottle thanks to Goliath. Poured into a shaped pint glass.

A:Poured a nice caramel/copper color that had a beautiful inch and a half of head. The head had great retention, lasting almost the entire beer. Big time, sticky lacing.

S: Smell is of citrus/earthy hops, sweet, bready malt, and a touch of medicinal alcohol.

T: Taste is an amazing balance of citrus hops and sweet bread malt. This beer has nice tones of grapefruit and orange, but the malt adds a nice sweetness that balances this sweet heart out. There is also a touch of medicinal, herbal, metallic flavor, but is welcome and not at all unpleasant. So nice.

M: Medium in body. Carbonation is a bit low but that is the only gripe I have. Smooth and easy drinking. After taste of grapefruit and a just a touch of alcohol heat on the back of the throat.

D: This beer is truly great. I am now a fan. Great balance to this beer and that is what I like in my APAs. Damn near perfect.

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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.

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Photo of bosco7
4.57/5  rDev +7.3%
look: 4 | smell: 4.5 | taste: 4.5 | feel: 4.5 | overall: 5

Pours a copper color with a creamy off white head.

Smells of grapefruit, pine, orange, strawberry, and some caramel. Very pungent.

Starts with sweet caramel and a slight nutty malt flavor. Fresh hops soon take over the palate. Lots of orange, grapefruit rind, pine resin and hop leaf flavors. Finish is bitter but far from being extreme.

So damn drinkable, unlike a lot of American IPAs there is no harsh lingering aftertastes, yet has more hop flavor than those same IPAs. This is a beautiful beer (especially if you get to try it out of the serving tanks at the brewpub). If I could get this beer where I live, it would be in the fridge at all times. Highly recommended.

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Alpha King from 3 Floyds Brewing Co.
95 out of 100 based on 1,742 ratings.