Alpha Klaus Christmas (Xmas) Porter - 3 Floyds Brewing Co.

Not Rated.
Alpha Klaus Christmas (Xmas) PorterAlpha Klaus Christmas (Xmas) Porter

Educational use only; do not reuse.
BA SCORE
93
outstanding

719 Reviews
THE BROS
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no score

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Reviews: 719
Hads: 2,018
rAvg: 4.18
pDev: 5.5%
Wants: 266
Gots: 318 | FT: 17
Brewed by:
3 Floyds Brewing Co. visit their website
Indiana, United States

Style | ABV
American Porter |  6.00% ABV

Availability: Winter

Notes & Commercial Description:
Beer added by: zerk on 12-06-2002

Alpha King’s festive cousin. A big American Christmas Porter brewed with English chocolate malt, Mexican sugar and of course, tons of strange American hops. Cheers!

38 IBU
Beer: Reviews & Ratings
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Reviews: 719 | Hads: 2,018
Photo of Morris729
4.69/5  rDev +12.2%
look: 4 | smell: 5 | taste: 4.5 | feel: 4.5 | overall: 5

Pours very dark brown in color with some ruby highlights and a short creamy tan head that coats the sides of the glass with webs of lace as you drink. Nose is rich chocolaty malts blended nicely with floral piney hops. Underneath the dominate aromas, there are additional notes of cinnamon and a hint of candied ginger. Quite sniffable! Taste has some milk chocolate sweetness, a roasted coffee bitterness, and a good amount of spicy hops all balanced together fabulously. A wonderful American Christmas porter. (511 characters)

Photo of objectivemonkey
4.68/5  rDev +12%
look: 4.5 | smell: 4 | taste: 5 | feel: 4.5 | overall: 5

Into an imperial pint glass, pours a near solid black, even when held right up to a lamp, with a creamy tan head, sticks around for a bit before receding to a film thin in the middle and thick at the edge. Some nice lacing forms with some sticking.

The aroma is full of chocolates (and cocoa as it warms), with traces of pine hop, coffee, and toasted malt. The body (and taste, for that matter) are much fuller than the nose, a big body with fine carbonation and a smooth texture, with little awareness of the alcohol besides a slight warming. The taste is the best, very well conceived and balanced, the chocolates, coffee and thick roasted malt just melt into the mouth as the pine and hop oils spritz across the tongue, and comes to a close with a dry, dark chocolate.

Let this one warm up to let it all out, its a delicious beer that only gets better as you drink it... how can it get any better than that!? (913 characters)

Photo of egajdzis
4.68/5  rDev +12%
look: 5 | smell: 4.5 | taste: 4.5 | feel: 5 | overall: 5

Poured black with some reddish hues, tan head and nice lacing on the glass. Piney hop and slightly roasted aroma. Taste started resiny hoppy, then turned roasted with some coffee as well. Full creamy mouthfeel. This is a one of a kind, super hoppy porter... but by no means any sort of Herbed / Spiced Beer. (307 characters)

Photo of PorterPirate
4.68/5  rDev +12%
look: 5 | smell: 4.5 | taste: 4.5 | feel: 5 | overall: 5

Picked this mutha up at Le Cork in a 22 oz. bomber. Me Grandpap bought it for me when he was visiting.

A: Poured into a commemorative Nitty birthday mug. No real head to speak of, deep and black in my glass, obsidian tint. Hugs the mug slightly.

S: Deep, full malty nose to it. Slightly chocolate and floral scents waft out of the bottle.

T: Slightly sweet, also find hints of chocolate here. Malts are also very noticeable, as are the hops. A bit citrusy. Aftertaste is slightly bitter and sour but still quite enjoyable.

M: Not very heavy, a bit lighter than I was expecting. Slightly crisp, not much carbonation but more than many porters. Doesn't seem to stick around very long in my mouth.

D: Very high. I would definitely drink a bomber of this again, and it's medium abv (compared to what I usually drink) guarantees I won't be too buzzed to function. I feel like this was left over from last Christmas, so I will have to try the new batch this year and see how it compares.

All in all, quite pleased, as usual from Three Floyds. (1,042 characters)

Photo of Lnedrive14
4.67/5  rDev +11.7%
look: 4 | smell: 4.5 | taste: 5 | feel: 4.5 | overall: 4.5

Largest head I have ever seen on a beer - i think i filled about 1/8th the glass and it overflowed with head (and i poured slowly!). Head stayed forever - very fluffy so I just scooped some out. Beer looks thick, but is anything but - very light on the palate. Taste is amazing - dark dark belgian chocolate (like 75% cocoa or something) with a big hop sense as well. I really enjoy three floyds for the way they inject hops into different styles of beer while retaining the characteristics of the style. This is my favorite Three Floyds beer thus far.

N.B. Drink this one cold. Alcohol becomes overwhelming as it warms and overpowers some of the flavors. (658 characters)

Photo of cubedbee
4.67/5  rDev +11.7%
look: 4 | smell: 4.5 | taste: 5 | feel: 4.5 | overall: 4.5

22 oz bomber, no date, but I know it's 2005. Poured into an imperial pint, dark opaque black with a slight reddish hue, 3 fingers of light brown head, good retention, nice lacing. Smell is very very hoppy for a porter, somewhat piney, some nice dark chocolate and roasted coffee lingering. Taste is more of the same, a wonderful rich chocolate, roasted malt, espresso, all overlaid with a strong hop taste. Mouthfeel is full and rich and creamy. Very very nice porter, I love the hops, great seasonal. (501 characters)

Photo of crossovert
4.67/5  rDev +11.7%
look: 4 | smell: 4.5 | taste: 5 | feel: 4.5 | overall: 4.5

22 oz bomber. 2009 Vintage.

Pours a dark, dark blackish brown with hints of light ruby brown on the edge. The head is decently sized, tan, and recedes with some nice lacing.

First off in the smell it has a nice hop profile with piney, earthy hops. The malts have both chocolate and roasted coffee characters.

The hops aren't as evident in the taste but this is a straight up KICK ass porter, it just overtook Black Butte for me. It has light roasty flavors, plenty of sweetness, chocolate, some fruitiness, and a nice large backing of super piney hops. This is a winter beer for all winter beers.

The mouthfeel is near perfect, with decent carbonation but a big, full mouthfeel. Drinkability is excellent.

This is a freakin amazing brew, luckily there is a huge stash at the store near me, I might have to go stock up for the summer. (838 characters)

Photo of TheodorHerzl
4.67/5  rDev +11.7%
look: 4 | smell: 4.5 | taste: 5 | feel: 4.5 | overall: 4.5

Took down a bottle on Christmas night.

A: deep black with a tight white head on it
s: loads of chocolate and grassy hops
t: the chocolate is the main focus with the hops upfront and in your face as well. Just a wonderful flavor profile
M: Full and robust
D: I loved this beer. I would gladly have this on any cool winters night. (333 characters)

Photo of frazbri
4.67/5  rDev +11.7%
look: 4.5 | smell: 5 | taste: 4.5 | feel: 5 | overall: 4.5

Pours deep black with noticable ruby accents. Thick creamy tan head with a few larger bubbles. Spruce hop aroma with a hint of citrus and spice. Chocolate, a little pepper and lemon zest. Moderately sweet with a clean bitter finish. Very round, full body with modest carbonation.

This is one smooth beer. The aroma is fantastic! The flavors almost seem muted, but only in comparison to the nose. This is winter seasonal I will return to. I'm just a little sad that I don't have another;( (491 characters)

Photo of ABV
4.67/5  rDev +11.7%
look: 4.5 | smell: 5 | taste: 4.5 | feel: 4 | overall: 5

First of all, the label on the 22 oz. bomber is very impressive. It reveals the Alpha King donning Yuetide cap and dry hopping what is presumably the Christmas porter. (I'm glad they called it "Christmas" porter and not "holiday" porter.) Anyway, as the label implies, what we have here is a very hoppy porter. Grapefruity, piney hops swirling around a dark, roasted malty, chocolate/espresso brew. An extremely unique sensation, to say the least. Smell is phenomenal, mouthfeel a little thin. At 7.5% abv this is not a huge beer. I'd like to see the Floyds kick this one up a notch to, say, 10%. As it stands, one can knock off a bomber of this without too much loss of motor skills. Final verdict --
Alpha Klaus can come to town any time he damn well wants. Great stuff! (773 characters)

Photo of asabreed
4.65/5  rDev +11.2%
look: 5 | smell: 5 | taste: 4.5 | feel: 4.5 | overall: 4.5

So here it is. I've been looking for this for over a year now, and finally I saw a bomber and snagged one. I was going to grab both left on the shelf on general principle of Three Floyds kicking ass and the beer's reviews, but alas, at $8.99, I opted just for one.

Why pour this into a pint glass when it certainly would go much better, as far as presentation and aroma go -- along with the deep sipping -- in an oversized wine glass? So in the glass it goes.

Appearance: Head stays beautifully frothy despite its at-first possibility of dying quickly. Rather than a Belgian, it bubbles up slowly, then hangs out and refuses to go anywhere, like the top of a malted milkshake. Lacing's thick, clumpy, with layers folding atop one another down the glass. Body is thick and oh-so-close to near opaque black, though the faintest hint of dark amber can be discerned.

Smell: Oh the beauty of the citrus and piney hops. I don't know exactly what's used, but that's the backbone, and beneath it lies the subtle flavors of burnt-to-all-hell toasted malt, dark and deep unsweetened chocolate, molasses, and slight maple and raisins. Also somehow some dark and tropical fruit flavors inch their way in as it warms. Just awesome, especially when the hops lessen slightly and the malt (and slight fruit) character gets more dominant and complex when it warms. Tons of stuff going on, and it's all extremely well balanced.

Taste: Total malted milkshake at first, walking the line between burnt and frothy and creamy, it brings the party to the mouth. Dark and burned chocolate malt come next, sliding into the maple, vanilla, and raisin combination for some subtleness. Then it finishes beautifully dry, with the hops lingering on the tongue along with the malted milkshake divine thickness and taste.

Mouthfeel: Thick, creamy, a bit velvety but somehow a bit astringent, and somehow it works really well. I like the slight astringency, yet it's not quite up to the standard of a five, though close.

Drinkability: The biggest thing decreasing its drinkability is the price. In addition, it's so thick, complex, and tasty that to me it's more of a sharing porter, or else a nightcap to be enjoyed but maybe purchased months down the road for another treat. Still one of the best porters out there though, and one of the best that uses a fantastic combination of hop and malt to near perfection, in a porter to boot. It ain't easy, and Three Floyds have it down. At least snag one of these to see what you think. (2,521 characters)

Photo of franksnbeans
4.65/5  rDev +11.2%
look: 4.5 | smell: 4.5 | taste: 4.5 | feel: 5 | overall: 5

Pours black with ruby highlights when held to the light, the most rediculous amount of head Ive seen and slow to die before it laces, dammit it spilled over a little. Wheres the warning label Wowza! Awesome smells of some floral...hops perhaps? roasted malt, molasses, chocolate coffee? This is a treat to the senses. Tastes every bit as good as it smells with a little spice and a carousel of flavors. Medium in the mouth with some nice carbonation. Drinkability? I could make quite a night out of these. Went in with good expectations, came out a believer. Cant wait to try a fresh one. (588 characters)

Photo of aasher
4.65/5  rDev +11.2%
look: 5 | smell: 5 | taste: 4.5 | feel: 4.5 | overall: 4.5

Poured into a New Belgium snifter. It poured smoothly and had a quickly dissipating khaki head, lacing the glass. It looked as if it were the prototype for a porter. The smell was excellent. It was rich, malty, roasted, and had a sweet fruit aroma as well, perhaps cranberry. It had great flavor. The flavor mimicked the aromas. It was spot on. It had a great consistency and was incredibly smooth. It's one of the most drinkable beers I've had, and my list is extensive. The only knock on this beer is that it only comes in 22oz bombers. This one is a masterpiece. (565 characters)

Photo of fretlessman71
4.65/5  rDev +11.2%
look: 5 | smell: 5 | taste: 4.5 | feel: 4.5 | overall: 4.5

Pertinent Preliminary Comments: Many thanks to Chazwicke for sending this along.

A hallowed brew that I’ve had once before. Three Floyds is one of those breweries that, somehow, someway, can’t manage to make a bad or even mediocre beer. Nothing like a Christmas porter at the end of April, but what the heck…

APPEARANCE: Jet-frickin’ black. If I squint, I can see ruby mahogany highlights when held to the light. Serious tan head, fantastic lacing.

AROMA: WHOA. Malt, coffee, chocolate, molasses, dark fruit, hops, this baby has it all.

FLAVOR: Wow… reading the tasting notes from the BJCP, I could almost copy it straight over. Hoppy, sure, but a good sweet-but-roasted black malt vibe. Good dry finish. Smooth all the same. Espresso and chocolate are strong here. Never knowingly had a beer that used Mexican sugar, but I think I can taste it as well in the complex sweetness. Maybe not. It’s a great blend either way. There’s still head at the bottom of the pint! Now THAT’S staying power.

MOUTHFEEL: Very smooth. Good proper weight; somewhat high carbonation.

DRINKABILITY: At 7.5% ABV, it’s not quite a session beer, but it’s not supposed to be. This is a Winter Warmer of a porter, and on a chilly night in Indiana, this gets my first choice.

OVERALL COMMENTS: This beer is stellar in every way – it’s got it all. Not a weak link anywhere to be had. Nothing like Three Floyds, man – even on a warm Sunday afternoon, this beer hits the spot. Now we just have to get them to distribute to Colorado. (1,536 characters)

Photo of sjccmd
4.65/5  rDev +11.2%
look: 4.5 | smell: 4.5 | taste: 5 | feel: 4 | overall: 4.5

Pours a pretty solid black. A vigorous pour yields a 2 finger tan head leaving a sticky lacing down the glass.

Chocolate malts dominate the smell. Dark roasted coffee, bitter and sweet chocolate, finishes with fresh piney hops.

The hops come out much more in the taste. The hop character is crazily unique. Minty and piney. It leaves an interesting cooling sensation that I've never experienced before in a beer. It's quite refreshing. This is rounded out by a significant chocolate/coffee backbone that is both bitter and sweet. The combination reminds me of chocolate mint candy.

Mouthfeel is initially crisp and sparkling but finishes silky smooth. As the carbonation dies down, I feel like I'd like more body, but the finish is cool and refreshing even as it warms.

The minty/piney character is so fascinating and refreshing that it's a pretty hard beer to put down. It's very rich and flavorful.

Overall, one of the most unique beers I've ever had and probably THE most unique porter I've had. This is a pretty remarkable brewery. I think I made the right choice in picking a grad school that's just a short trip away from Indiana. (1,141 characters)

Photo of wisrarebeer
4.64/5  rDev +11%
look: 4 | smell: 5 | taste: 4.5 | feel: 5 | overall: 4.5

$8.49 for a bomber from Discount Liquor in Milwaukee, WI.

A: deep, dark color, opaque, poured with light brown full head that dissipated to thin veil
S: full, rich, deep roasted malt, chocolate, cocoa, made my mouth water!
T: just like the nose and lived up to everything I was anticipating from the first smell
M: well-rounded, deep, velvety, highly, highly drinkable (369 characters)

Photo of merlin48
4.63/5  rDev +10.8%
look: 4.5 | smell: 4 | taste: 5 | feel: 5 | overall: 4.5

What a winter treat this one is. 22 oz bomber pours a deep dark brown body that is opaque until held to the light, illuminating a ruby tinted clarity. Healthy tan head has garnet fringes and rises a few centimeters, falling into a steady cap with immense patch lacing.
Aroma is hops. Pine, spruce, and grass are obvious, and there are dark roasted malts in the background. Quite interesting to pick up such profound hop aromas from such a dark ale.
The moutfeel is exceptional. I rate a 5 for mouthfeel only when I find myself swirling a sip around in my mouth for several seconds, out of pure enjoyment, pleasure, and wonderment. This has such a mouthfeel. Medium to full bodied, with ample carbonation which bounces the hop bite off the roasted maltiness. Yummy!
Taste is more hops than roasted malt, but both are here in excellent proportion. Pine and grassy hops, with a hint of tangerine, atop a smooth chocolate malt backbone. Roasted coffee bitterness balances, but is mild in taste. Toasty barley malt flavors are constantly peaking through, but the hops really run the show here. This is really a treat to sip and savor.
Unique, fascinating, and exceptional. The best winter seasonal I've ever sampled, and I'm really fond of Mad Elf and Cold Mountain. Judicious use of hops here transforms a very good winter porter into an excellent winter seasonal. Three Floyds has really raised the bar with this superior brew. A big thank you to orbitalr0x is in order. (1,473 characters)

Photo of tapman
4.63/5  rDev +10.8%
look: 5 | smell: 4.5 | taste: 4.5 | feel: 4.5 | overall: 5

Poured from a oz. bottle into my favorite Unibroue snifter.

Black body with dark brown head. Looks just like a giant espresso, really. Carbonation retention is beautiful; the thick, light syrup body resists against the bubbles pull towards the surface creating a slow motion cascade. That’s what did it for me in this category. Lacing is decent and creamy, but eventually fades to a thin ring that remains throughout the sampling.

Bitter chocolate, roasted malts and lots of coffee make up the nose of this brew. Alcohol is barely noticeable and does nothing more than warm up the nostrils. There is a pleasant bitterness to the nose, which I attribute to the hops. Coffee is very sweet and pungent.

Taste is full of sweet, creamy espresso roast coffee. It is warm and delicious and inviting. Mix in bitter dark chocolate and medium roasted malts and you got yourself a winner. I detect a hop presence playing the role of bitter fruit to balance out the dark flavors. Bit of an Alpha King grassiness to it in the aftertaste. Not sure if that does to much for the balance, but being in the finish it doesn’t get in the way of the other flavors yet adds a degree of complexity to this brew. For such a light porter, however, I would like to taste some flavor from the lighter malt categories to peek through, even slightly.

Thick yet lighter than one would expect. Not heavy syrup but definitely a thick texture. Carbonation is trapped well and help to break up the thickness of the brew. A little thin for the style traditionally, but it adds to drinkability in my opinion so I’m torn on this issue.

Overall one of the best porters I’ve had in a while. The only rival I’ve tried recently would have to be Arcadias shipwreck porter which works with bourbon barrel ageing so hats off o them. But this is a reat coffee porter and a must try for this holiday season. Prosit! (1,882 characters)

Photo of peabody
4.62/5  rDev +10.5%
look: 4.5 | smell: 5 | taste: 4.5 | feel: 4.5 | overall: 4.5

Pours out really black with just a slight band of small brown bubbles. There is a little lacing here.
Smell is wonderful. Mellow chocolate and coffee with burnt malts and caramel sugars. Almost a fruityness in front of the coffee but the coffee is so strong it is hard to discern.
Taste is coffee and toasted malts and very little sugar. This is a very balanced porter and not too sweet. I like that fact.
Mouthfeel is just a tad oily and the bitterness lingers on the back of the tounge for quite a while.
Drinkability is high here if only I could procure lots of this stuff locally. (584 characters)

Photo of whartontallboy
4.62/5  rDev +10.5%
look: 4 | smell: 4.5 | taste: 5 | feel: 4 | overall: 4.5

Pours out a rich cola-brown with a finger and a half of dense tan foam that fades slowly and leaves a decent amount of lace.

Smell is rather intense, and it's hard to unpack at first. The initial wave in your nose is pure West Coast hoppiness, almost like you're sniffing a pale ale. A seriously bitter pine/spruce hop nose kicks in, but underneath there's a solid roasted maltiness with some coffee and chocolate.

Flavor is more of the unusual same: a big, IPA-ish wave of evergreen hop flavors that then mellows out into a slightly bitter, balanced chocolate and coffee flavor. The lingering aftertaste is an interesting blend of bitterness, both from the coffee and hop flavors and sweet chocolate/roasty tastes. Quite unique. Some little spices slip in as well, notably cinnamon, but I also get a little tiny licorice flavor. Mouthfeel is creamy and pleasant.

Overall: I didn't buy this one last year because I thought it was too much for a single bottle. Wow. I was wrong. A completely unique porter that really uses aggressive hopping without being over-the-top and losing all of its porter characteristics. Outstanding. (1,138 characters)

Photo of jakester
4.6/5  rDev +10%
look: 4.5 | smell: 4.5 | taste: 4.5 | feel: 4.5 | overall: 5

I got this bomber at Union Jack's on the Manatawny. I drank it in a goblet.

Pours an almost opaque ruby/garnet with brown tints and a two finger head of tan foam. Head eventually falls to islands and a ring, with fantastic lacing throughout the drink.

Aroma is a very complex combination of cocoa, coffee, vanilla, really spicy pine sap, dark fruits like prunes or dates, and big dark bread notes.

Flavor is this huge chocolatey pine needles, on the sweet side, with a fairly big hop bitterness to back it up. Fruits like gin soaked raisins and dates come through. Aftertaste is sweet chocolate, pine sap, and a slightly drying roastiness. Delicious beer!

Mouthfeel is really smooth and creamy, with soft carbonation.There is a nice bite on the tongue from bitterness, and the lips stick together from lingering sweetness. Finish is sweet, very slightly astringent from roasted malts, and slightly warm from alcohol.

This is an absolutely delicious beer, and as a holiday beer, it's perfect. Deep dark chocolate, spicy pine hops, luxurious mouthfeel, and a nice alcohol kick to boot. I need more! (1,111 characters)

Photo of wilwfu
4.6/5  rDev +10%
look: 5 | smell: 5 | taste: 4.5 | feel: 4 | overall: 4.5

Very dark, Poured straight into a tulip glass with a 2 inch head that smells absolutely wonderful, filled with roasted marshmellows and earthy hops. It takes about 5 minutes for the head to subside, leaving lacing all the way down. This is an awesome beer, very hoppy, complementing the roastiness. It is very dry, smooth and extremely easy to drink. I could make an evening of smelling the earthy hops and then tasting the roasted malts... this is an awesome holiday / winter beer. (482 characters)

Photo of zeff80
4.6/5  rDev +10%
look: 4 | smell: 4 | taste: 5 | feel: 4 | overall: 5

A - Poured out an opaque, thick dark, dark brown color with a small, foamy, bubbly tan head that left some sticky lace.

S - It smelled of dark chocolate, roasted malt, some coffee beans and a floral hop aroma. Very interesting for a porter.

T - This is probably the best tasting porter that I've ever had. Great dark chocolate flavor with a smooth roasty malt quality. It had a sharp hop bite from the hops that also added a subtle citrus taste.

M - It was soft and smooth with a crisp finish from the hops. A medium-bodied beer.

D - This is quite possibly the best porter that I've ever had! Just and amazing blend of flavors. (631 characters)

Photo of shippos
4.6/5  rDev +10%
look: 4 | smell: 4 | taste: 5 | feel: 5 | overall: 4.5

courtesy of clvand0

poured witha tan fluffy head that faded to an average thickness and clumpy underneath an almost black body. fresh hoppy aroma with a bitter black malt character. moderately thick mouthfeel witha an excellent blend of toasted and chocolate malts. bit on the chewy side without becoming heavy but has some sugary notes. aroma is completely opposite of the taste. grassy and hoppy and finishes with a rich malt finish. very excellent. (454 characters)

Photo of dwarbi
4.6/5  rDev +10%
look: 4.5 | smell: 4.5 | taste: 4.5 | feel: 4.5 | overall: 5

This was one of my two favorite three floyds. Fantastic beer. It's a solid black beer. Can't see it at all. Lovely tan head. Smells of cinnamon and homemade bread. It tastes malty and a little bit like chocolate. Perfect thickness -- feels very good on the palate and incredibly drinkable.
(Tasted this beer at the Blind Tiger's Three Floyds event) (349 characters)

Alpha Klaus Christmas (Xmas) Porter from 3 Floyds Brewing Co.
93 out of 100 based on 719 ratings.