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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

721 Reviews
THE BROS
-
no score

(Send Samples)
Reviews: 721
Hads: 2,021
rAvg: 4.18
pDev: 5.5%
Wants: 268
Gots: 320 | FT: 18
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: 721 | Hads: 2,021
Photo of Benjiehorn
2.01/5  rDev -51.9%
look: 4 | smell: 3 | taste: 1.5 | feel: 1.5 | overall: 1.5

I was quite disappointed in this years batch (2008) of the Alpha Klaus. Three Floyds needs to expand out of it's hop profile, and try something new. This beer tasted similar to the Dreadnaught with a touch of coffee on the finish. Absolutely no mouth feel, thin and watery, the flavors were simply awful, and this beer made very little impression on me in a positive light. Hopefully next years will be a better outing. (419 characters)

Photo of Ummagum
2.68/5  rDev -35.9%
look: 3.5 | smell: 3 | taste: 2.5 | feel: 2.5 | overall: 2.5

Poured this beer form a 22 oz bomber. Poured black with a brownish head. Left a good collar throughout the glass. To me, this beer had hints of coffee and pine at the same time. The taste was not one of my favorites. I did not enjoy drinking this beer. I am big fan of some of their other beers, but I did not enjoy this beer. (326 characters)

Photo of MPLS
2.7/5  rDev -35.4%
look: 4 | smell: 4 | taste: 2 | feel: 3 | overall: 2

Thanks for this extra Chris.

I don't know how I feel about this Three Floyd's "guy" on my bottle...looks like a shady pot smokin' fella with poor design, but remember to never judge a beer by it's label?

A: Pours like a good dark-roasted coffee color with a nice cascading soapy head that can hold it's own for a bit. Lacing was agreeable, but not spectacular.

S: Chocolate malt, robust spice, and good amount of hops.

T: The hops are overbearing in this beer's taste, but didn't think they would be this unpleasant judging from the nose. I enjoyed the malt profile or what I could taste of it...sweet and chocolaty. The hop profile was not to my liking in this beer, pungently unpleasant and irritating to my buds for some reason. I certainly have enjoyed hopped up stouts before, but this wasn't registering well with me.

M: Where is the viscosity that I have come to expect from 3F? This beer has an average mouthfeel, tad thin 'n' slim.

D: Not a fan of this beer, perhaps my opinion would change with a more aged version of it as the hops exercise control over the beer. (1,081 characters)

Photo of kscaldef
2.85/5  rDev -31.8%
look: 2.5 | smell: 3 | taste: 2.75 | feel: 3.25 | overall: 2.75

A: A dark brown ale, raises a small head with poor retention. Splotchy lacing.

S: roasty chocolate malts, mild hints of spices.

T: Starts with watery chocolate milk, developing nutmeg and cinnamon on the mid-palate. Initially finishes with an unpleasant rubbing alcohol aftertaste, but as the beer warms that off-flavor seems to subside.

M: Moderate-low carbonation. Finishes with dry, slightly astringent spices.

O: A fairly run-of-the-mill porter. I don't find the spices adding much, but at least they aren't overdone. I was rather worried about the initial off-flavors, but that seems to be remedied by letting the beer warm for 15 minutes. (648 characters)

Photo of biglite351
3.01/5  rDev -28%
look: 4.5 | smell: 3.5 | taste: 3 | feel: 2 | overall: 2.5

A - a good bit of orange around the edges. Creamy off-white head.

S - roasted malts with minor dark chocolate in the mix. Hops are also present.

T - certain hop flavor throughout. Mild roasted malts, chocolate and nearly caramel.

M - mild coating, but thin. Tiny bit of tingle on sides of tongue.

D - maybe one, but most likely not. (336 characters)

Photo of LilBeerDoctor
3.03/5  rDev -27.5%
look: 3.5 | smell: 3 | taste: 3 | feel: 3 | overall: 3

Reviewed on 8/21/09. Bottle. Pours black with a thick light tan head. Aroma of sweet roasted malt, very sweet. Flavor of sweet malt, chocolate malt, some lactose notes. Pretty bland and boring really; I'm quite underwhelmed. Too sweet and not complex at all. Meh. (263 characters)

Photo of aggiearcher13
3.06/5  rDev -26.8%
look: 4 | smell: 3 | taste: 3 | feel: 4 | overall: 2.5

A: Pours pretty dark, almost black, light brown head that hung around for a couple of minutes before leaving a little lacing on the glass.

S: A little bit of malt and carmelized sugar, but mostly just overpowering citrus... grapefruit for sure. Amarillo hops?

T: Dark malts and coffee but mostly citrus. Too much for me, I really don't care for it because it overpowers the subtlety of the malts.

M: I do like the mouthfeel, it's nice and creamy and some good carbonation.

D: Pretty low on the drinkability. I had most of the bomber but just couldn't finish it. It would be interesting to have this beer with a slightly more normal hop schedule to it.

Overall, it's a little disappointing for me, I always stop by the brewery on my way to Michigan and I've had just about everything they offer. This is the first by them I didn't really dig. (847 characters)

Photo of tayner
3.06/5  rDev -26.8%
look: 3.5 | smell: 2.5 | taste: 3 | feel: 3.5 | overall: 3.5

poured from a 22 oz bottle

Poured a very dark brown, had minimal lacing and not alot of carbonation.

Smell was a very meaty, savory smell. Hard to explain but it was not at all sweet smelling.

Taste was more along the lines of a baltic porter. It had a savory meaty flavor, and almost a grape skin/grape koolaid flavor i tend to find in all baltic porters i try, and it is a flavor i cant seem to get past to say i like.

It was medium bodied and lacked adequate carbonation for me.

If you like baltic porters you will probably like this one, but i cannot drink them. (575 characters)

Photo of dancinwillie
3.11/5  rDev -25.6%
look: 4 | smell: 3 | taste: 3 | feel: 3.5 | overall: 3

Dark brown, almost black, creamy coffee-hued topper is gone within minutes.

Mainly chocolate. Light traces of caramel and coffee.

Sweet up front, and all the flavor that the aroma had promised me, are here. I like the strong hop flavor, and there's a little roasted bitterness here too. I'd like to know if there's any brown malt in here, just for the sake of knowing. Bit of a maple syrupy flavor as the beer warms up.

On the thin side body-wise. Medium carbonation. Smooth.

I like it. Pretty good beer, I would probably get a couple more, and cellar them, if I see them anywhere. I would drink one every now and again, but nothing too regular. Just to see how they cellar. Cheers! (686 characters)

Photo of leftmindedrighty
3.11/5  rDev -25.6%
look: 4 | smell: 3 | taste: 3 | feel: 3.5 | overall: 3

(From Notes)
22oz bomber, split among two people.

Smell, very sweet coffee, semi-tart smell also present.

Taste, this one has a very interesting flavor, even for 3F. That semi-tart flavor hits a big chord, followed by a very, very strong fruity flavor, I was puzzled deeply drinking this beer. The usual coffee and chocolate flavors that you would find in most examples of the style must have gotten lost on their way to the brew kettle.

Overall, a very interesting beer to say the least. If you gave this beer to someone without telling them what it was, its a 10-1 shot they would say its a porter. I dug this beer only for it being unique, I wouldn't buy it again anytime soon and could never finish a whole bomber on my own. (738 characters)

Photo of Franz4
3.14/5  rDev -24.9%
look: 4.5 | smell: 3 | taste: 3 | feel: 3.5 | overall: 3

Friend brought back a growler, we broke this open 2 days later.

A- poured with a huge head that settled nicely with lots of lacing. Very dark, just a touch of translucence.

S- Very much a pine scent to it, a bit antiseptic. Nose really downgraded my hopes for this beer.

T- Tastes like a christmas tree, add in a touch of toasted brown sugar and some dark chocolate, but nothing really works it's way through the pine.

M- medium bodied with a hoppy pine aftertaste.

D- I was somewhat disappointed, this wasn't a bad beer, but it seemed to be a bit one-dimensional and the pine overpowered everything else. (610 characters)

Photo of ZPB
3.15/5  rDev -24.6%
look: 3.5 | smell: 3.5 | taste: 3 | feel: 3 | overall: 3

A shared bottle with father-in-law and brother-in-law, thanks George for finding this one!

Poured into three tall glasses with a tan head that lingered quite a while. A beautiful black opaque color.

Smells of roasty malty goodness. Not the typical scents of a porter - very little chocolate or coffee.

When the liquid hit my tongue I immediately knew why the smell was different. It tasted like a black ipa. The roasted malts were hidden behind the hops.

Dry finish like an ipa, not a porter.

I know why they call this a 'cousin' the ipa, because that's what it is. Good, not great. A Black IPA not a porter. I would not need to drink again. (649 characters)

Photo of Phatz
3.18/5  rDev -23.9%
look: 4.5 | smell: 4 | taste: 3 | feel: 2.5 | overall: 2.5

This beer pours a dark red/Black; meaning it is opaque and looks black but does contain some red highlights. It has a nice 2-3 finger head and significant lacing.

Smell: From the moment I cracked open the bottle before I even got to start pouring it I got a FULL nose of a bold sweet, malty beer. Nice. After pouring it, I got subtle hints of hops and pine, chocolate and barely a bit of espresso hiding in the back of the aroma.

Taste: I lift the glass of this beautiful, nice smelling beer to my mouth for a sip and SMACK!!! ‘Holy green hoppy pine batman’, that was unexpected. ewe. Wow, what an intense overwhelming flavor of eating tree. I think there is some sweet caramel under there but I don't know if I can make it through the forest to find it on every sip; I just can’t get past the pine. If dragon breath was made of pine, the aftertaste would be a pine/fire breath across my tongue. If you like pine, go for it. This beer is for you. For me it is simply a flavor I don't care for. I was sitting beside my artificial Christmas tree and I thought it turned real and jumped into my glass. It was mostly the aftertaste that made me pucker so drastically.
I did pull out some Danish Havarti, cheese after a bit and things did begin to improve. As the beer reached room temperature and the bottle neared the end, I did find myself wincing less, and maybe even enjoying it. With a nibble of cheese after each sip, the aftertaste no longer bothered me so much. I thought about moving my rating up to 3.5 pushing 4; but that is the beer cheese combo not the beer alone. So I'll stand by my rating with the note that the cheese salvaged it and made it a good experience.

Mouthfeel: The mouthfeel is initially light and thin; crisp and a bit bitey. A little swishing brought out the malty creamy feel, but I had to look for it.

Drinkability: This beer started off being even hard to stomach because of the extreme flavors. As my palate warmed up to it, the pine mellowed into a less extreme taste of coffee and became increasingly drinkable. The 'Loudness' of this beer makes it one to work on; not one that goes down very easily.

My review does seem to be a different experience than many other people had; but that is just my opinion.

---
EDIT
I originally gave this beer a 2.5 for the taste. I am leaving my original review because it was my honest impression with that experience. This time round I found it to be a bit less cloying than I did last time so I increased the taste to a 3.0 rating for this experience. I stand by the opinion that if you like the pine flavor you’ll like this, if you don’t, beware.
---

Hope this is helpful.
Cheers! (2,687 characters)

Photo of Higravity
3.18/5  rDev -23.9%
look: 4 | smell: 3.5 | taste: 3 | feel: 3 | overall: 3

I got this from Cretemixer and I read some reviews before I tried it. First let me say I like the idea of a hopped-up sweet porter but the hop combo in this beer is a turn-off. My nose knows and while it poured a great dark color and creamy tan head that had staying power and left lace, this beer smelled off. I am sure I have a good bottle everything was intake and it doesn't tasted oxidized. It reminds me of a fasting beer that has a lot of extra sugar to help tide the monks over. There are plenty of roasty flavor in there but they are beaten to death by the sugar. It is definately drinkable and a rare enjoyment that I thank my fellow BA for this. I could see having one of these in the yuldetide mood, but not anytime soon. (733 characters)

Photo of Tinfoilrcr
3.19/5  rDev -23.7%
look: 3 | smell: 4 | taste: 3 | feel: 3.5 | overall: 2.5

Received as an extra from Hayesez - thanks. Poured from a bombed into a pint glass.

A- Dark blackish brown with hint of ruby on the outer edge of the brown/tan head. Head dissipates quickly leaving some nice lacing.

N- Chocolate and coffee, mixed with with bright bitterness along with citrus and floral hops.

T- Big coffee flavor up-front. Almost stout-esque. FInish of citrus and flavor hops. Some nice chocolate malt tones.

M- Heavy.

D- Could not drink very many of these, given its heaviness. Also seems a little flat. Could use some more carbonation to improve the drinkability. (590 characters)

Photo of Bung
3.19/5  rDev -23.7%
look: 4.5 | smell: 3 | taste: 3 | feel: 4 | overall: 3

22 oz. Nearly black pour, white head. Surprisingly piney aroma, some peat and roast malt. Flavor is also surprisingly crisp, very dry and hoppy. This over-rides the earthy malt, chocolate and coffee. Nearly creamy, but the bittyness hurts the mouthfeel a bit. Finishes with some linering coffee and hop bitterness. Really too much hops for the style. More alcohol warming as well than I would prefer, even though it is not that terribly high an abv. Drinkability is pretty meh. Unfortunately I had rather high expectations for this. Hopefully with some age this will mellow out a bit. (584 characters)

Photo of silenius
3.2/5  rDev -23.4%
look: 4.5 | smell: 2 | taste: 3.5 | feel: 4.5 | overall: 3

2004 vintage just picked up today. I think it was released for 2004 within the last day or so.

Pours a dark brown black with a nice 1 finger choco-like head. Lacing all up and down the glass.

Smell at first is almost solvent chemical in nature. Very pine-sol like. After a bit that blows off to just reveal some very resiny green hop aromas. No citrus or floral smells here, boys, just a buzz-saw hoppy green resin aroma. Strange for the style even if FFF is known for its hoppy beers (which I happen to like). Too hoppy and the malt to balance it is much too small. Only faint smoky chocolate aromas find their way through (or is it just my expectation that it would be there).

Taste is hoppy for sure and (thankfully) the smoky chocolate malt reports for duty. Green hop burps bring back memories of the Dark Lord sludge. *shudder* Hops definitely predominate this one, but the malt plays a bigger role in the taste than in the nose. A nice sweet-smoky chocolate that leaves a pleasing combo of smoky-roasted malt with hop bittering on the finish. I still think the hops are too overdone.

I think a much better example of a hoppy porter that is properly balanced comes from Goose Island in the form of their XXX Porter. Had it the other day and was floored!

Mouthfeel is round with some light prickling from the carbonation. I keep thinking of a nice charcoal grilled steak when drinking this beer.

I think with age this might balance out a bit, but for now it is too hoppy for a porter. At the very least it doesn't have the stuffing to stand up to all the hops foisted upon it. (1,599 characters)

Photo of FtownThrowDown
3.21/5  rDev -23.2%
look: 4 | smell: 3 | taste: 3 | feel: 3.5 | overall: 3.5

Pours a very dark brown in color. There was at least a two inch head sitting atop this beer. Smell is subdued hops and some chocolate malt. Taste is much more of the malt with a little bitterness as well. There is a grassy and pine flavor of course coming from the hops. Pretty decent medium full on the mouthfeel. (314 characters)

Photo of Mudpuppet
3.23/5  rDev -22.7%
look: 4 | smell: 3.5 | taste: 3 | feel: 3.5 | overall: 3

A- Poured from a bomber into a snifter. Pours a root beer color with no head.

S- Dark malts, coffee, chalk. Not overly strong.

T- Hops on the front receding to coffee, and dark chalky malt. You get a strong alpha hop profile throughout. Not quite as malty as I would expect.

M- A bit too carbonated. And a bit too thin for a porter.

D- Overall a well crafted beer but I have lost all the porter notes in this to an alpha taste that I cannot shake from my palate. I want more malt which isn't there. Better on the first few sips than the last of the beer. (559 characters)

Photo of bkilpatr
3.23/5  rDev -22.7%
look: 3.5 | smell: 3 | taste: 3.5 | feel: 3 | overall: 3

Poured from a 22oz bottle into a pint glass. 03/19/08.

Pours a dark brownish black, with almost two fingers of light tan head. Aroma is quite hoppy for what I expect from a porter, with some chocolate, and a little spice.

Taste is interesting. When I first started drinking this, I thought the hops were overpowering. As I got toward the end, and as it warmed, the hops seemed to fade a some, but still a bit on the hoppy side. Didn't get much malty flavor in this. Not very balanced. Some slight roasted chocolate tastes as well, and some spices.

It's full bodied, low carbonation. Sticky mouthfeel afterward. Drinkability is alright, considering the heaviness.

The hoppiness turned me off a bit, and there isn't much spiciness for something that is labeled a winter beer. (777 characters)

Photo of Phyl21ca
3.25/5  rDev -22.2%
look: 3.5 | smell: 3.5 | taste: 3 | feel: 3 | overall: 3.5

Bottle: Poured a black color porter with an above medium dark foamy head with good retention. Aroma of pine is really non-expected but enjoyable nonetheless when mix with roasted malt. I couldn’t really detect any chocolate or coffee, which I would have expected. Taste is dominated by the pines and IMHO doesn’t leave enough places for roasted malt and bitterness. I guess I’m kind of surprise this is rated so highly since it seems to be liking character and I must say that I’ve had much better beer from 3 Floyds. (521 characters)

Photo of TMoney2591
3.26/5  rDev -22%
look: 4 | smell: 3 | taste: 3 | feel: 4 | overall: 3.5

Served in a Sam Adams sensory pint glass.

Thanks to VDubb86 for a taste o' this!

Not sure why Dexter was on, but at least there's beer. And Alex is talkin' this one up, too. It pours a pitch black-brown topped by a finger or so of tan foam. The nose contains a strong contingent of green hops, with some chocolate and light roasted malts in the background. The taste holds a touch more roast, but it's still only a vain attempt at countering the hops, which have maintained their strength. The body is a light-ish medium with a light moderate carbonation. Honestly, I can see why people could like a rather hoppy porter like this one, but I am not one of these people. There's just not enough roast to provide any kind of appreciable balance. (744 characters)

Photo of maggotbrain
3.26/5  rDev -22%
look: 4 | smell: 3 | taste: 3 | feel: 4 | overall: 3.5

The beer is black with a thick tan head. The head dies down to a bubbly layer of film. There is quite a bit of lacing on the glass.

The beer smells strongly of pine. Not really expected with a porter, but this is a Three Floyds beer and mega-hopped beers are their thing.

There is a lot of pine in the taste as well. Somewhere in there meek hints of dark chocolate and coffee attempt to make themselves known, but are crushed behind a wall of pine. This would be great if Three Floyds called this a black IPA, but they don't, they call it a porter, and I'm having trouble figuring out what is supposed to make this beer very porter-like.

Mouthfeel is medium with a moderate level of carbonation.

The drinkability of this beer is pretty good, goes down easy.

Overall this is a pretty good beer, but it is certainly not worth $8.99 for a 22 oz bottle. (864 characters)

Photo of getkrunkhoe
3.27/5  rDev -21.8%
look: 3.5 | smell: 4 | taste: 3 | feel: 3 | overall: 3

consumed on 5-17-09 (from notes)

App-dark, opaque,no lace to thin lace head, disappears quickly.very inviting.

Ar-where do i begin? roast presence is there;but its not your typical roasty note, this is different.I get Horchata and maybe "mexican chocolate(?)". has a lot going on.

T- very similar to aroma,horchata (which is rice water with cinnamon and sugar), mexican hot chocolate comes to mind,coffee,finish has some bitterness/earthy note to it.

MF-carbonation isnt in your face,but it has some thickness to coat your mouth.

D-if you dont mind a complex beer with lots going on,then go ahead.not to easy of a drinker but it was great trying it.

as much as i wanted to "love" this beer I was a bit disappointed.smells better than the taste. (750 characters)

Photo of maundythirsty
3.31/5  rDev -20.8%
look: 4.5 | smell: 3.5 | taste: 3 | feel: 4 | overall: 3

Black with brownish edges and a big, persistant tan head. Heavy lacing. A very attractive beer. Smells like Three Floyd's hops -- a little floral, a little pine, a little grapefruit.

Can I find any of the advertised coffee bitterness in the taste? It would be a Christmas miracle. All hops, all the time. Substantial carbonation, but it comes off as creamy, medium mouthfeel.

Have to admit that I liked this stuff. I would drink more of it. However, I would consider labeling the bottles "IPA" before putting them in the fridge. I knocked the smell, taste and drinkability some points because I was turned off as a porter lover, though not as a beer drinker. It doesn't taste like much more than the usual Three Floyds hops profile. (738 characters)

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Alpha Klaus Christmas (Xmas) Porter from 3 Floyds Brewing Co.
93 out of 100 based on 721 ratings.