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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

4,273 Ratings
THE BROS
93
outstanding

(view ratings)
Ratings: 4273
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
Sort by:  Latest | High | Low | Top Reviewers | Read the Alström Bros Beer Reviews and Beer Ratings of Alpha King Pale Ale Alström Bros
Ratings: 4,273 | Reviews: 1,646 | Show All Ratings:
Photo of RoyalT
RoyalT

Ohio

3.58/5  rDev -16.2%
look: 4 | smell: 4 | taste: 3.5 | feel: 3 | overall: 3.5

Appearance – This one poured a nice, clear orangish-brown with a huge, puffy, retentive head.

Smell – The sharp, East Coast hop profile seems to have a bit of pine. This was a welcome surprise. I can pick up some light grain as well but clearly this is a hop-dominated APA.

Taste – The hops came out big at the taste but did not show a lot of depth, leaving this flavor profile a bit unbalanced. The malts were light and overmatched.

Mouthfeel – This one was somewhere between light and medium-bodied and didn’t hold up well to the big hops, but the bitterness was just wonderfully done.

Drinkability – This is a light, easy-drinking APA that I thought could have used a bit more depth.

Serving type: bottle

05-15-2005 22:41:15 | More by RoyalT
Photo of bluejacket74
bluejacket74

Ohio

4.03/5  rDev -5.6%
look: 4.5 | smell: 4 | taste: 4 | feel: 4 | overall: 4

Served in a pint glass, the Alpha King pours a hazy amber/orange color, with around a half inch or so off-white head. The main aroma I get from this is citrusy hops (grapefruit), with a little spicyness too. It tastes hoppy with citrus being the main flavor, and with a bit of caramel sweetness in there too. There's a bitter finish/aftertaste, but it wasn't as strong as I expected (not that I'm complaining). The mouthfeel is kinda slick, with medium body. It's a pretty drinkable beer. Overall it's pretty good, you can't go wrong with this!

Serving type: bottle

07-30-2006 00:15:07 | More by bluejacket74
Photo of ZAP
ZAP

Minnesota

4.47/5  rDev +4.7%
look: 4 | smell: 4.5 | taste: 4.5 | feel: 4.5 | overall: 4.5

Re-review....the old review noted shit floating around in it..this is fresher...and better...

One of the better Pale Ale's I've had...great citrus nose...grapefruit, oranges, mangos, pineapples...taste has that juicy fruit cocktail hoppiness but also a great sweet malt balance....caramel...full bodied for a pale ale and smooth..

Easy driinking top notch pale ale that lives up to its reputation....

Serving type: bottle

01-23-2005 04:14:12 | More by ZAP
Photo of DefenCorps
DefenCorps

Oregon

4.33/5  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

Serving type: bottle

03-25-2008 23:43:32 | More by DefenCorps
Photo of gford217
gford217

Georgia

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

12oz bottle courtesy of sativen poured into a pint glass.

A: Pours a clear deep copper with a small bubbly head that dissipates quickly leaving minimal lacing. A few bubbles sit out on the top for the duration of the session.

S: A big floral, citrus hoppy aroma dominated by grapefruit and pine. Nice sweet malty aroma in the background to balance this out.

T: Just as in the smell, the taste is dominated by the huge floral and citrus hops - orange, grapefruit, pine, etc. Despite the big hop profile, the balance in the taste is provide by the subtle sweet malts that take over after the initial hop blast.

M: Medium bodied, creamy with a perfect moderate carbonation that just tickled the tongue. Not too sticky but definitely syrupy sweet with the perfect hop bitterness contrast.

D: This would be a staple in my fridge if I had access to it. It is an extremely drinkable APA and I could drink a few of these in a sitting. Highly recommended!

Serving type: bottle

04-27-2008 03:33:25 | More by gford217
Photo of scruffwhor
scruffwhor

Illinois

4.33/5  rDev +1.4%
look: 4.5 | smell: 5 | taste: 4 | feel: 4 | overall: 4.5

Had this beer numerous times, both bottle and tap. I decided now is the time to let you all know how I feel about this beer.

Appearance- Good two finger head that drys to a thick foam in my impy pint glass. No bubbling, but some standard, English, lacing. Great, slightly hazy, deep amber, tan hue. A little sediment is noticeable too.

Smell- Smells like a hop Christmas tree. Citrusy, resiny hops burst into my nostrils with hints of pine and holly. Awesome.

Taste- Greeted with the normal citrusd peel, but more emphasis on grapfruit zest and some malts. Bread and hop water, yeah. Could only taste some very faint pine at the back of the throat.

Mouthfeel- A little dry but still very cleansing with its normal astringency.

A beer that will always have a place in my fridge. Abd you should make room in yours.

Bow down to the King of Kings.

Serving type: bottle

10-11-2006 02:57:47 | More by scruffwhor
Photo of TheLongBeachBum
TheLongBeachBum

California

4.38/5  rDev +2.6%
look: 4 | smell: 4.5 | taste: 4.5 | feel: 4.5 | overall: 4

During a recent Beer tasting held in my Apartment I was not too impressed with this offering. In the slightly less noisy and more laid back surroundings of my own company tonight, and another 355ml Bottle all to myself – I have changed my opinion somewhat.

The 12 fl.oz. bottle label is quite intriguing, a big fat green dude with green hop-vine hair and a gold crown with the letter ‘A’ on it, appears to sprinkling his own hoppy dandruff into a pint glass full of beer. Looks like a cross between Don King, a Buddha and the ‘Green Man’ of Southern English legend.

It pours with a reasonable head at first but it almost immediately subsided to a thin white halo head that was stretched over the top of the beer with only a handful of bubbles floating on the surface. The body of the beer is a gorgeous deep clear amber color that shines with a deep copper orange brilliance when back-lit.

Aromas are slightly acidic, citric, lemony and very hoppy. Fresh hops abound in the back of the nose, whilst the tantalizing pull of hummulus lupulus will certainly tease and entice hop-heads.

The tastes are quite superb, fresh green acerbic hoppy skid-marks are laid on the tongue, and it will take more than Billy Mays and his bloody annoying super-sized OxyClean, or miracle Orange spray, to get rid of these stains. The hop-bitterness is beautifully balanced amidst the multi-layered citric floral strata’s. Talking of Billy Mays, this beer did appear to have a slight fruity end, I got an orangey taste set amidst a feint malt finish, which I enjoyed. Bitterness still lingers in the long finish. My hoppy belches are quite tasty after this offering. How impolite, yet incredibly self-rewarding it is to burp aloud and taste ones own belches? – My Mother would slap me hard for these bad manners if she was here. LOL, Awesome.

If this is the Pale Ale from Alpha King – I would dearly love to try their I.P.A!!!!

Serving type: bottle

02-24-2003 22:41:33 | More by TheLongBeachBum
Photo of jrallen34
jrallen34

Illinois

4.38/5  rDev +2.6%
look: 4 | smell: 4 | taste: 4.5 | feel: 4.5 | overall: 4.5

I drank this from the bottle into a chalice.

The beer poured amber in color with a weak small white head and poor lacing.

It smells hoppy with citrus and spice, but the hops are a sweer smelling hops.

This is an IPA at its core but incedibly drinkable. Its sweet but hoppy and bitter.

Serving type: bottle

07-22-2009 18:40:31 | More by jrallen34
Photo of cokes
cokes

Wisconsin

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

One of the elite American Pale Ales (IPAs). Pours and amberish pale orange with a nice head. Hazy profile, which I enjoy greatly. The yeast adds immeasurable to the beer and smooths out the mix. Big time citrus hops profile, all full of grapefruit oil and resin. Caramelized, biscuity malt balances the brew out nicely, but not completely. This is absolutely a hop bomb. Alcohol content is there, but blended well with the massive hop flavors. Mouthfeel is full, but a bit greasy and oily.
A great refreshing brew, but one that I could drink whenever, wherever.
Certainly smokes more well-known APA examples like Sierra Nevada. Pick some up...you will not be disappointed.

Serving type: bottle

02-21-2002 01:37:04 | More by cokes
Photo of blackie
blackie

Virginia

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

appearance: The pour produces a low, white head that soon recedes. The beer is a clear, burnished copper color.

smell: Fresh, green, floral hops greet the nose...accompanied by a well balanced caramel malt sweetness. Some aromas of tropical fruits and light estery notes are also present. Great balance.

mouthfeel: The carbonation is towards the lower end of the medium range. The body is medium and slightly slick.

taste: Awesome taste...one of the more exciting and interesting APAs I've had the pleasure of sampling. Fresh tasting, green, resinous hops give the beer a great hop flavor, but are used liberally enough to stay true to the style. A moderate bitterness balances the sweet caramel-like malt flavors.

drinkability: very good, and easy to drink as a result, though the full body limits drinkability somewhat

Brought back a bottle from my trip to Madison, WI

Serving type: bottle

01-16-2006 02:48:16 | More by blackie
Photo of TurdFurgison
TurdFurgison

Ohio

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

Drank from a 12oz bottle. It's been a while since I tried this, I forgot how hoppy it is. Smells and tastes like citrucy hops. I don't know what an APA is supposed to be, but it must be close to an IPA. Whichever type this is, it's an easy-drinking session beer.

Serving type: bottle

05-13-2006 16:31:41 | More by TurdFurgison
Photo of Alieniloquium
Alieniloquium

Florida

3.95/5  rDev -7.5%
look: 4 | smell: 4 | taste: 4 | feel: 3.5 | overall: 4

12 oz. bottle poured into a pint glass.

Appearance - Deep golden amber body that looks darker than it really is. That sounds strange, but when it pours it looks amber, but held up to the light, it's closer to a golden body. Nice white head, nice lacing. I expected this to be paler.

Smell - Floral and pine hops. Some citrus. Biscuit malts and some sweetness back it up. Interesting hop profile, but not over the top.

Taste - Hop flavor of predominantly pine up front, but it fades quickly to a toasty and slightly sweet malt base. The finish goes back to the pine hops and a slight earthiness. Not too bitter in the finish.

Mouthfeel - Heavy for an APA. Medium carbonation and slick on the tongue. The flavors hang around, but it feels just a bit sluggish.

Overall - Nice flavors, none over the top. Complex hop profile, even if it isn't in-your-face. Not really what I expected from such a high rated APA. In some ways, it's good that a beer as balanced as this is so highly rated on BA. But I'm not looking for balanced. As an American craft beer drinker, I want extreme everything.

Serving type: bottle

09-30-2011 23:07:15 | More by Alieniloquium
Photo of johnnnniee
johnnnniee

New Hampshire

4.38/5  rDev +2.6%
look: 4 | smell: 4.5 | taste: 4.5 | feel: 3.5 | overall: 4.5

Received in trade from phisigben, thanks for the opportunity.
Pours a deep clear copper color with a big fluffy white head that slowly dissipates to a wisp of foam on top. Smells of citrus, lots and lots of grapefruit fresh from the produce isle. a bit of toffee, bread and a hint of caramel malt are buried deep underneath. Taste is citrus and resinous with bits of bread and malt barely breaking onto the scene. Long lingering hop bite in the finish is there but never harsh. Medium to light body with a moderate level of carbonation with a smooth resinous mouthfeel. This is a very nice beer, but to call this a pale ale is a bit of a stretch. I would drink these a lot more often if they were more available in my area.

Serving type: bottle

12-16-2011 00:48:34 | More by johnnnniee
Photo of woosterbill
woosterbill

Connecticut

4.05/5  rDev -5.2%
look: 4 | smell: 4.5 | taste: 4 | feel: 3.5 | overall: 4

On-tap at the brewery into an imperial pint.

A: Clear deep amber body under an inch of frothy ecru head. Good retention, plenty of lace. Very nice.

S: Caramel drizzled on grapefruit. Simple and terrific.

T: Grapefruit hops dominated, finally being balanced with a nice touch of caramel malt on the back end. Hugely bitter finish. Long, slightly astringent aftertaste. Way too big for the style, but it's still a great beer.

M: Lively, slightly prickly medium body. Pretty standard.

O: I love this beer, but can't for the life of me figure out why it's called an APA - it's way too strong, way too malty, and way too bitter. I'll take Zombie Dust and its crispness over the sheer hugeness of Alpha King any day.

Cheers!

Serving type: on-tap

07-29-2011 23:07:07 | More by woosterbill
Photo of chinchill
chinchill

South Carolina

4.28/5  rDev +0.2%
look: 4.25 | smell: 4.25 | taste: 4.25 | feel: 4.5 | overall: 4.25

12 oz bottle, undated but of very recent vintage according to the salesperson, served in a Belgian snifter.

A: Dark red-amber, definitely dark for style, with a modest size bone-colored head that has very good retention and lacing. Lightly hazy.

Smells unique, partly due to the unfamilair Warrior hops I suppose, with a very balanced and integrated aroma that reflects both malts and hops.

T: also, nicely balanced. Less fruity, more herbal and less bitter than CPA (see below), but as tasty overall, if a bit less intense, and perhaps even more easy drinking. More generally, has the intensity and hop level of a typical IPA.

O: Excellent. I had my first Alpha King immediately after an excellent Odd Side Ales CPA, and suspected it might pale (excuse me) by comparison. Well, it’s different, but similar in both sensory properties and quality. Glad I have 5 more!

Serving type: bottle

08-18-2013 22:25:50 | More by chinchill
Photo of francisweizen
francisweizen

Arizona

4.83/5  rDev +13.1%
look: 4.5 | smell: 5 | taste: 5 | feel: 4.5 | overall: 4.5

On-Tap @ McGradys! Yeah! Yeah! Yeah! Ahem....Dark red with a small white head that dies quickly (old keg?). Aromas are of piney hops, hops, hops, hops, a bit of bready malts, and some alcohol. The taste is hoppy up front with a lovely malt flavor in the middle and a dry, piney, after taste. The mouthfeel is thick for an IPA and the drinkability is awesome. At 7.35%ABV this one is a true killer! Wow, what an awesome brew from FFF!

Serving type: on-tap

11-01-2004 23:58:07 | More by francisweizen
Photo of FosterJM
FosterJM

California

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

101st review on BA
bottle to pint

Thanks Jazz @ El cerrito for this.

App- Very clear copper/amber/red color with a small 1 finger head that dissolved into some excellent swirl marks.

Smell- Hi, My name is Hops, have we met? Big hops and mild citrus on the nose. Very nice smelling beer.

Taste- I am so very sad I do not live closer to IN to get more of this beer. For an APA so very good. I have had SN and Stone and this is just a class in itself.

Mouth- Nicely balanced withouth being overpowering for a nice APA

Drink- I want more. I have to get more. Every beer drinker should have this APA.

Serving type: bottle

12-11-2010 06:29:09 | More by FosterJM
Photo of tpd975
tpd975

Florida

4.55/5  rDev +6.6%
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!

Serving type: bottle

06-18-2007 20:01:18 | More by tpd975
Photo of LilBeerDoctor
LilBeerDoctor

New York

4/5  rDev -6.3%
look: 4 | smell: 4 | taste: 4 | feel: 4 | overall: 4

Bottle thanks to FlssmrBrewAlum. I've been waiting to try this one for quite some time now. Pours a semi-cloudy orange-brown with a small white head. Aroma of caramel malt, brown sugar, citrus hops, and grapefruit. Flavor is initially rather tangy with hop oils and citrus and then mellows with a maltier finish. This is pretty tasty. I'd love to have this as a session beer, if only it was distributed in NY. Good stuff.

Serving type: bottle

08-28-2009 20:31:09 | More by LilBeerDoctor
Photo of Jwale73
Jwale73

Rhode Island

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

Another extra from bgramer; an unbelievably generous trader (thanks Brendan). Served in a standard pint glass. Poured a translucent copper red; excellent clarity. Tight, off-white head approached the rim of the pint before reducing its volume in half within about 30 seconds. Cap eventually settled into a thin semi-consistent skim with strands of watery lacing spattered around the walls of the glass. Aromas of floral, piney hops immediately hits the nose. Taste consistent with nose with a strong grapefruit character that leaves a lingering bitterness between quaffs. Mouthfeel is between light- and medium-bodied with a distinct tingle across the tongue. This is an excellent representation of the APA style and I can see why it is a Three Floyds flagship brew, as such, I tried to be true to the style in my rating; however, a little too hoppy for my preference. If you are a fan of the style, this is definitely a brew to measure all other APAs against.

Serving type: bottle

07-19-2008 16:08:19 | More by Jwale73
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
Photo of AgentZero
AgentZero

Illinois

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

A - Dark copper color with a small white head that had some mild lacing.

S - Lot of citrusy hops on this, but light, not heavy grapefruitish like some hop bombs will do. Light malt notes, and some resiny finish.

T - Really nice citrusy sweet profile, not sugary sweet, but sweet. Malt backbone with a nicely bitter finish.

M - Medium bodied with a nice amount of carbonation.

D - Really easy and refreshing to drink, could do a few of these.

Serving type: bottle

04-29-2010 05:10:19 | More by AgentZero
Photo of Brent
Brent

Kentucky

4.2/5  rDev -1.6%
look: 4 | smell: 5 | taste: 4 | feel: 4 | overall: 4

Hops had a great citrus aroma, but I was a little disappointed that the citrus did show up in the finish, which seemed a little on the harsh, quinine-like side.

Serving type: bottle

08-07-2001 09:21:52 | More by Brent
Photo of GClarkage
GClarkage

California

4.8/5  rDev +12.4%
look: 4 | smell: 4.5 | taste: 5 | feel: 4.5 | overall: 5

07/30/05- Received from a purchase at Archers Liquors.

Presentation- 12oz bottle with no dating. Poured into my Shipyard pint glass.

Appearance- Darker golden color. Nice 3/4 inch head and average lacing.

Smell- Huge and I mean huge grapefruit hops. That's about all I can detect because the hops overpower everything else.

Taste- Wow, this is one damn good Pale Ale. Starts off with a huge fruity blast of hops and finishes with a nice smooth semi dark malt flavor.

Mouthfeel- Moderate carbonation, heavier mouthfeel.

Drinkability- I actually felt some of the alcohol kick in at the end of the brew. Not sure if I could session more than a couple of these. But, an amazing hoppy pale ale that I would buy again in a second if I could get my hands on it out here. Hands down one of the top two or three Pale Ales I've had. Maybe the best.

Serving type: bottle

07-31-2005 18:28:05 | More by GClarkage
Photo of Mebuzzard
Mebuzzard

Colorado

4.13/5  rDev -3.3%
look: 4.5 | smell: 4.5 | taste: 4 | feel: 4 | overall: 4

Pours a copper, hazy, amberish body. Head is huge, good retention.
Smell erupts with pine and hints of citrus. Smells like an IPA. Some toffee and malt can be detected as well.
Taste is a very crisp pine/citrus PA. The IPA smell is counteracted by the presence of malt and some rich yeast flavors just under the surface. Very delicate.
Feels a bit thin for an IPA, which is why this is a PA. Good drinking. Wish I had another (cool label)

Serving type: bottle

04-01-2007 22:17:08 | More by Mebuzzard
Alpha King Pale Ale from Three Floyds Brewing Co. & Brewpub
95 out of 100 based on 4,273 ratings.