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Alpha Klaus Christmas (Xmas) Porter - Three Floyds Brewing Co. & Brewpub

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

Displayed for educational use only; do not reuse.
BA SCORE
93
outstanding

1,758 Ratings
THE BROS
-
no score

(send 'em beer!)
Ratings: 1,758
Reviews: 698
rAvg: 4.14
pDev: 10.39%
Wants: 243
Gots: 222 | FT: 11
Brewed by:
Three Floyds Brewing Co. & Brewpub visit their website
Indiana, United States

Style | ABV
American Porter |  6.00% ABV

Availability: Winter

Notes/Commercial Description:
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 added by: zerk on 12-06-2002)
Beer: Ratings & Reviews
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Ratings: 1,758 | Reviews: 698 | Display Reviews Only:
Photo of beergeek279
4.7/5  rDev +13.5%
look: 4.5 | smell: 5 | taste: 4.5 | feel: 4.5 | overall: 5

Served in the 22 oz. bomber into a dimple pint. The color is virtually black (I even used my cell phone to check ;) ) with a very good bubbly beige head. The beer smells like actual hop pellets which on another sniff has a strong porterish roastiness to it and just a touch of sweetness. The taste is about as hoppy as I'd expect from 3F, with a very strong high-alpha, citrusy hopping, and then once the initial hop wears off the actual porter flavor comes through, with a nice roastiness in the beer and a chocolate sweetness; the flavors meld together very well in some odd way. Mouthfeel is nice and creamy and chewy. As for drinkability, this would be one I'd love to have tons of come next winter!!

It's sure not normal...but it IS indeed tasty!! This has definitely catapulted up to amongst my favorite Christmas beers, and while it was slightly more hoppy when we had it in January, now it's mellowed out to a nice balance. As nice and piney a beer as I've had and one I will look for this holiday season.

beergeek279, Jul 04, 2005
Photo of kmpitz2
4.83/5  rDev +16.7%
look: 4.5 | smell: 4.5 | taste: 5 | feel: 4.5 | overall: 5

I am a huge fan of this brew. I want to see how I compare to before. It pours an incredibly dark brown to black color with a small head that falls to a moderate broken head over top. The nose is divine. Brilliant hop aroma, along with a big chocolate and moderate coffee, but not bitter. Very well blended flavors on this beer as well. The hop is mostly aroma and flavor. Not a lot of bittering. I get a blast of chocolate and a nice hop flavor, but not bitter. Very very good. The feel is a light thick to heavy moderate with a light to moderate carbonation. This beer is awesome. Everything works so well together. I'll alwyas grab this beer when it comes out. So good.

kmpitz2, Jun 26, 2005
Photo of Phyl21ca
3.23/5  rDev -22%
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.

Phyl21ca, Jun 16, 2005
Photo of RoyalT
4/5  rDev -3.4%
look: 4 | smell: 4 | taste: 4 | feel: 4 | overall: 4

Appearance – This porter came out very, very dark in color with a beautiful white head.

Smell – The malts here are dark and roasty. There are some light coffee ground notes here along with some rather aggressive, leafy hops.

Taste – The hops really come out at the taste. They are big for a porter, even an American-style one. The coffee flavor is mild but well represented. There’s a milky sweetness to this flavor profile as well that makes it a complex, very interesting beer.

Mouthfeel – This AP is medium-bodied with some good, gritty bitterness that works well with the creamy milky sweetness.

Drinkability – This is a very balanced, good-drinking porter that went down way too well.

Comments – Big thanks to my BA bro BuckeyeNation for hooking me up with this classic Three Floyds offering.

RoyalT, May 16, 2005
Photo of granger10
4.53/5  rDev +9.4%
look: 5 | smell: 4.5 | taste: 4.5 | feel: 4.5 | overall: 4.5

Dark, smooth full bodied pour with reddish purple tinges around the edges. A huge tan head comes in and holds until I'm done. Ridiculous amounts of sticky lacing. I love it! Smells like I walked into a coffee shop and then put a hop plant up my nose. It works well! Very nice mixture of the two along with some sweet chocolate on top. Taste has a concentrated espresso shot, not really roasted at all, but still intense. Dark, lucious chocolates dominate the malts. A little charcoal in there underneath. Full green hop plants come in the finish. There's a creaminess in there as well but I really get it at the end. This beer went down way, way too smooth. Too good. It's a shame we can't get it here in Michigan and the price also makes it a shame but its still worth it for a treat every once in awhile.

granger10, Apr 10, 2005
Photo of AlexJ
4.58/5  rDev +10.6%
look: 4 | smell: 4.5 | taste: 4.5 | feel: 4.5 | overall: 5

A high pour yields a ruddy black brew topped by an impressive peak of chunky,beige head. As the tight head unwinds, it leaves lacing as thick as your Grandmother's doilies!

Intoxicating aromas of pine-drenched Cocoa Pebbles (mmm) and good coffee roastiness are a prelude to what lies ahead. Smooth porter aromas and massive pine sap gooeyness somehow balance eachother out.

A sip reveals a magnificently tastey porter with a uniquely 3 Floyds twist. Rich chocolate, vanilla, and roasty coffee flavors upfront, an assault of evergreen sappiness throughout, and a smooth finish that is neither sweet, nor bitter, but smoothly perfect.

Body is medium-big, silky-smooth, and very rich on the tongue.

Overall, one of my new favorites from 3F. Absolutely dangerous in drinkability. Each sip brings a smile to my face. Not a trace of the alcohol within. Smooth, smooth, smooth.

AlexJ, Mar 20, 2005
Photo of RonfromJersey
4.45/5  rDev +7.5%
look: 4.5 | smell: 4.5 | taste: 4.5 | feel: 4 | overall: 4.5

Extremely dark brown body, black if you don't hold it to the light. Topped by a couple of thick, tight and extremely level fingers of light tan foam. Good lacing.

Aroma features tons of chocolate, a bit of coffee, and a can of mixed nuts.

Taste is a rich blend of chocolate, nuts, and a beat later, a big tingle of earthy hoppiness goodness throughout the mouth.

Mouthfeel is medium-to-full. HIgh drinkability.

A very enjoyable porter for the holiday season, with food or as a late night beer.

RonfromJersey, Mar 20, 2005
Photo of blitheringidiot
4.45/5  rDev +7.5%
look: 4.5 | smell: 4.5 | taste: 4.5 | feel: 5 | overall: 4

Dark opaque onyx hues with scants of light creeping through the bottom of the glass, topped off with a dark tan craggy thick solid gigantic head cap leaving behind some impressive lattice lace.

Huge aroma of hops destruction and a cocoa malty foundation that only FFF seems to know how to do.

First swigs: An enormous amount of tacky possible Simcoe(?) hops that holds up to a cocoa Porteresque foundation. Sweet sugary hot chocolate like powdery detection. Gently roasted malt profile holds up.A bit one dimensional, but so flavorful that it is not to a detriment.

Medium to full bodied and sticky in the finish feel due to such a deluge of ingredients.

Last swigs: Tastes a whole lot like fresh Victory Storm King with so much hop and malt duking it out. Quite excitied to try a new FFF. Acquired via a trade with Orbitalr0x.


Beer is good. Happy beering.

blitheringidiot, Mar 16, 2005
Photo of santoslhalper
4.5/5  rDev +8.7%
look: 4.5 | smell: 4.5 | taste: 4.5 | feel: 4.5 | overall: 4.5

Appearence: Pours a wonderful dark brown with tinges of red shinig through. The head is chocolate and creamy.

Smell: The nose is an incredibly powerful but wonderful cocoa smell. The coffee notes are also wonderful.

Taste and Mouthfeel: This is a very solid, very good tasting porter. None of the flavors are over the top or uncalled for. The all blend to creat something wonderfully balanced and wonderfully tasty. The mouthfeel is creamy and thick.

Drinkability and Overall: I've been spoiling myself with these good porters lately. This is another classic. Three Floyds have again outdone themselves with this rich, thoughtful and wonderfully refreshing piece of brewing art. Thanks to PatYoda for the bottle.

santoslhalper, Mar 08, 2005
Photo of rhoadsrage
4.85/5  rDev +17.1%
look: 5 | smell: 5 | taste: 5 | feel: 4.5 | overall: 4.5

Served in an Imperial pint glass

A- Dark in black color with a dark tan head that last pretty long. To dense to see bubbles rising

S- Even during the pour the smell of hops wafts through the air. The roasted malt, bright green hops and a hint of yeastiness is strong in the presentation

T- A rich chocolate malt is the initial taste with a strong bitterness of hops at the end. Just a bit of grassiness in the HUGE hop flavor that hangs on in the end. No alcohol taste in the finish which is surprising.

M- Full body mouth feel with good hardy astringency and a little alcohol warmth in the mouthfeel

D- This is a big beer with a bigger hoppiness. The aroma and bitterness of the hops are well balanced so it feels like there are fresh hops right in the glass. It would be nice to see a bit more maltyness in this beer but I can see hops are the driving force in this brew.

rhoadsrage, Feb 22, 2005
Photo of brewdlyhooked13
5/5  rDev +20.8%
look: 5 | smell: 5 | taste: 5 | feel: 5 | overall: 5

Purchased from my local Shop Qwik, I've downed 6 or 7 of these already, I better write up a review on one of these before it's all gone.

Appearance - a vigorous pour gets a moderate head, mocha in color. Thick with good retention and lace. The beer is very dark and lets just a little light through its deep garnet body.

Aroma - strong and piny, mixed with a dark chocolate and roasted malts. A perfect aroma for the holidays.

Taste - everything seems to hit my palate at once. Malts, chocolate, coffee, and of course, a fabulous hop presence that is piny but not overly bitter. The hops stay the course while the other flavors subside. This beer I can best describe as my interpretation of liquid Christmas Tree, bringing joy to all who partake. From the first sniff to the final swallow, it is delicious. Regardless of how much I drink, the empty glass is still like December 26th, always a bit of a letdown but ever mindful that New Year's Eve is but a handful of days hence... :-)

Mouthfeel - the plentiful malts and generous hops give this a heavy, sturdy feel. The rich flavors are kept festive with some moderate carbonation.

Drinkability - are you kidding? I think I spent $100 on Alpha Klaus this year, it's dreadfully delicious. If my refund gets here in time, I may deplete Jungle Jim's of their remaining stock!

brewdlyhooked13, Feb 15, 2005
Photo of Dantes
3.53/5  rDev -14.7%
look: 4 | smell: 3.5 | taste: 3.5 | feel: 3.5 | overall: 3.5

Package: 22oz. crowned brown bottle. Typically ornate 3F label depicting a green elf-like creature maniacally dropping hops into a full pint of beer. Blurb describes beer as an American version of a London Ale made with English malts, Mexican sugar, and unique hops; and having chocolate and floral flavors and aromas. Additional Christmas-y pictures. No ABV or date information listed, but believed to be this year’s.

Cost: Acquired via trade

Presentation: I figured an Anglo-American ale needed an Imperial pint. ~50º

Appearance: Fairly typical for a porter. Not quite black, with a nice, medium-gauge, light-brown head at first. Unfortunately, the head didn’t last very long, resolving to a thin but intact ½" layer. Bubbles percolating through the beer seemed somewhat large.

Smell: Nice, but somewhat underwhelming. The piney hops were definitely there, along with some coffee notes; but little in the way of the thick maltiness I expect in a porter, much less one modeled on an English ale. Not much in the way of floral notes either. Primarily pellet hops and pine.

Taste: Hops make the first impression, with a sharp, citrus-pine tingle. The next impression is of a very nice bittersweet coffee flavor, which turns out to be the highlight on the palate. There were some faint cocoa notes, but they may have been part of the deep, multilayered coffee flavors. There was no hint of alcohol (too little, really) and not much follow through. The finish was fairly short and dry, leaving mostly a preponderance of hops and some of that delicious coffee.

Mouthfeel: Surprisingly thin and austere. The malts were underplayed, and the very low alcohol sensation robbed this of some of its impact. The flavors were all too fleeting in the mouth, with little finish. I also thought that this was a touch overcarbonated, more like an IPA in texture than a traditional porter.

Drinkability: While not unpleasant, nothing really stands out about this beer for me. Because I can think of several well-hopped and traditional porters I prefer, this ranks fairly low on the drinkability scale. Furthermore, the high cost and limited availability make searching this out a somewhat dubious proposition.

Backwash: To be fair, this was based on only two bottles from the same source, but I feel they were somewhat representative. I hope that the draught version is much better and I get to try it. Still, this is the first Three Floyds beer that I’ve found to be disappointing, especially after being so eager to try it. Aside from some nice coffee flavors, this wasn’t very flavorful in a multi-dimensional way and not much akin to any English ales or porters I can think of. Sure, the hops are there; but the malts were weak and the body and mouthfeel were thin. Especially after drinking some other porters recently, I found this a bit wanting. Not anything like a Fuller’s London Porter and a classy Imperial Stout. I’d take either of those (esp. the Fullers) over this in a heartbeat.

Dantes, Feb 14, 2005
Photo of tavernjef
4.83/5  rDev +16.7%
look: 4.5 | smell: 4.5 | taste: 5 | feel: 4.5 | overall: 5

Deep and very dark brown, nearly black with slivers of glowing amber at the bottom. Finger high foam of light tan sits atop for a good stay. Lacing coats in a thin sheeting eventually breaking into webbings all around the glass top.

Mild chocolate and roasted sweet malt mix with a nice and clean floralesk piney hop start the nose off with a decorous medley. Other mentionables beyond the milk chocolate make for some charred brown sugar and a lovely bourbon laced molasses under current. Impressionable and close to cloning an Imperial stout-like nose. Sometimes wiffs were lighter then others; seemingly changing and without much stability but well worth it when the strength assumes control.

Great flavors here, super fine balance between a sweet and soft chocolate cake backing that continues to lift itself through the softer yeilding piney hops that perk with a incredibly nice and easy bitterness. Very nice to behold. The chocolate borders a coffee roastyness while maintaining its full-on chocolate cake-like fluffyness and richness. The subtle but eager piney edged hops blend across and within the chocolate without much effort and fit together with a swimmingful smoothness. Great finisher too. Bits of anise and licorice spice pop to the surface blending with leftover roasted barley and oatmeal along with mirco bursts of heavy roasted coffee. Wow and yum!

Strikingly fine and smooth body, lightly creamy, lightly bittered with swell chocolate tones and piney hops; just past a medium fullness thats very well rounded and clean. Nothing harsh or out of place here. Finish is strikingly subtle, yet complexing with a delicate drying character and all that wonderful leftover stuff.

An excellent porter! A big chocolatey balancing act with hops and bittering bite that holds true, bold,smooth, and rich the hold ride through. This is a top notcher in my book! Goes down quickly without much labor and is just a f*ckin' great beer. Kudos 3F!

And an even bigger kudos to rhoadsrage for the chance to try this wonder!! Yummalishious!

tavernjef, Feb 11, 2005
Photo of mntlover
4.1/5  rDev -1%
look: 4 | smell: 4.5 | taste: 4 | feel: 4 | overall: 4

Pours dark almost black have to hold to the light to see thru it and notice its redish a nice tan head falls to a ring that leaves some sheet lace.
Aroma is basically chocolate covered pine cone, roasted malt some coffeee hints mixed with the nice chocolate aroma but dominated by pine nice and inviting.
Taste is roasted malt chocolate mixed with some light coffee flavors. The hops start fruity sweet teasing almost then move to bitter grapefruit rind mixed with those pine cones that leave a lingering pine finish on your tounge.
Mouthfeel is good a nice medium little light maybe but still very good.
Drinkability is good a nice porter that is heavily hopped as the name states. Want to think merlin48 for this fine brew.

mntlover, Feb 09, 2005
Photo of walleye
4.25/5  rDev +2.7%
look: 4.5 | smell: 4 | taste: 4.5 | feel: 4 | overall: 4

from the bottle. poured dark brown, wih granet edges, and a tan head. aroma pine, bitter sweet chocolate, honey, roasted malts, coffee, alcohol, floral. flavor, semisweet chocolate, malts, caramel, fruity, raisins. the hops were not as strong in the flavor as they were in the aroma. nice dry mouth feel

walleye, Feb 01, 2005
Photo of cncbofh
4.47/5  rDev +8%
look: 5 | smell: 5 | taste: 4.5 | feel: 4 | overall: 4

Poured black with some reddish hints peeking through. Noticed this brew was not very thick and syrupy but a tad watery. Huge billowing white head that hung out for the duration of session. Bubbles were very small and made for an almost whip cream texture head.

The smell was piney and roasty. There were some hints of cinnamon and spice but mostly a sweet malty scent.

The taste was incredible. Very earthy and chocolaty with hints of hops and sweet sugars and lactose. Exactly what I'm looking for in a high caliber porter.

I was a bit let down when it came to the mouthfeel. Not a lot of body or complexity. Very watery and a little too oily. Despite this setback, this beer was a Huge Winner with me. Will pick up more next time I make a trip to the east coast.

cncbofh, Jan 25, 2005
Photo of sulldaddy
4.38/5  rDev +5.8%
look: 4 | smell: 3.5 | taste: 4.5 | feel: 4.5 | overall: 5

ahh...another brew from secret santa..what a great idea!
I am sampling at room temp in a snifter.
The beer pours a rich dark brown with a tan fluffy marshmallowy head foaming up easily to 3-4 cm.
The head slowly fades to a robust surface layer and by the end of the snifter is only an edge layer.
Aroma is some roasted malt and sweet chocolate, but dominated by piney and grassy hops. I find this typical of the 3F brews I have sampled.
First sip reveals an average body with fine tingly carbonation. Flavor is mild overall with some brown sugar and chocolate mixing for a nice sweet flavor rolling to a slight coffee bitterness. I need to restate, flavor is mild overall, but very tasty.
The body seems to finish a little lite, but I believe this is true to the porter style.
I get the piney hops flavor on the burps, was wondering where the hops from the nose went. Overall this is a mellow smooth easy drinking brew. DOnt let the nose fool you, not a hop monster for sure.
Very nice!

sulldaddy, Jan 25, 2005
Photo of MuddyFeet
4.03/5  rDev -2.7%
look: 4.5 | smell: 3.5 | taste: 4 | feel: 4 | overall: 4.5

There's a lot going on in this beer for a porter. It pours extremely dark, with a two-finger deep head on it. The head settled down and would create a nice steady lace throughout the glass. The aroma is a very mild spruce, with burnt malts in the background. The tongue comes across as a cornocopia of dark choocolate, Christmas tree, malts, sweet hops, and smokey goodness. The carbonation is perfect for a porter, enough to know it is there and bring out the flavors, but not too much so that it keeps the flavors from reaching the tongue with fizz. But good God, I think I actually found a Christmas/Holiday/Celebration beer I found myself wanting to drink.

MuddyFeet, Jan 24, 2005
Photo of longpondbeerman
4.08/5  rDev -1.4%
look: 4.5 | smell: 4 | taste: 4 | feel: 4.5 | overall: 4

Managed to get a couple of bombers of the Alpha Klaus from my friends at Half Time Beverages, and I was not disappointed. This seasonal porter--they call it a chocolate porter--poured a deep ebony with just enough translucence to reveal the clear, blood red undertone. The head was tall (2 and 1/2 fingers) and toffee/chocolate brown. Not thick frothiness, but sticky. The aroma was a balance of roasted sweet malts and distinct piney hoppiness. This is a hard combination to keep under control, and I was nervous about the taste, but they managed to pull it off. The mouthfeel is medium-thin, and the roasted nuttiness was not cloying. In fact, the sweetness diminshes in the taste--a plus as far as I'm concerned because it enabled the hops to assert themselves appropriately. A slightly bitter finish and, to me, not much chocolate!

longpondbeerman, Jan 22, 2005
Photo of bigbubba
4.22/5  rDev +1.9%
look: 4 | smell: 4 | taste: 4.5 | feel: 4 | overall: 4

Very dark with a thick tan head. The head shrinks down a bit but then sticks around for quite a while. The smell is good, with a mix of roasted malt and chocolate and flowery hops. The taste is very good but also unusual. There is a good balance between malt and hops. The hop flavor is more floral than bitter. The mouthfeel is good. I would prefer a little more body.

bigbubba, Jan 20, 2005
Photo of shippos
4.65/5  rDev +12.3%
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.

shippos, Jan 17, 2005
Photo of faernt
4.33/5  rDev +4.6%
look: 4 | smell: 4.5 | taste: 4.5 | feel: 4 | overall: 4

Chocolate Hops! Hops in coffee! I get the pineyness of Anchor's Our Christmas Ale but then it's a big porter blast. This is an unapologetically ambiguous beer.

It starts as an opaque pour wiht a fine-bubbled, smallish head. The aroma is hoppy so I expect hop. The taste is burnt' It's coffee but the hop seems to bring out sweet. It belches hop and tastes espresso.

Ambiguity in American culture is seldom pondered. This beer is doing a noteworthy nonverbal job. It doesn't speak but it demands I do. I will seek this out next Christmas. Onece again, Three Floyds makes it big with me. It's a pleasure dto live close by.

faernt, Jan 15, 2005
Photo of FormatKid
4.55/5  rDev +9.9%
look: 4.5 | smell: 5 | taste: 4.5 | feel: 4 | overall: 4.5

I picked this up while on the East Coast for the holidays. I've been looking forward to this one for quite a bit but I wanted to figure out a good pairing for it, which I think I did. This beer pours out a deep shade of brown, so dark in fact that it might as well be black to the naked eye. Comparison to light reveals those burgandy/brown highlights. Sticky cappacino foam head here that retains very nicely, leaving fat clumps of lace on the glass as I work my way down. The nose on this beer is robust and lovely, chocked full of chocolate, nice mild coffee tones as well. It doesn't step over into imperial stout territory by getting to charred or roasty. I'd call it down right perfect as far as the smell is concerned. Tastes like no other porter I've had, the front is chocolate covered strawberries and coffee beans, nice and chewy with malts through the middle where the "Alpha" part of the name becomes apparent. The chewy milk chocolate stays present the whole time while melding with piney and grapefruity hop flavors. Bitterness levels are middling, but the flavor of the hops really shines through while playing nice with the rich and layered flavors of the malts the whole time. Wow, grab this one if you have the chance. I know I'll be snagging it up whenever I see more of it. I paired this with New York Strip steak and frites and doused just about everything in shallot/butter/bleu cheese sauce, and it rocked my world.

FormatKid, Jan 15, 2005
Photo of PatandDavid
4.5/5  rDev +8.7%
look: 4.5 | smell: 4.5 | taste: 4.5 | feel: 4.5 | overall: 4.5

Fellow BA Quarre gave us this about a year ago (!) and we are just digging into it now. Lucky for us, it has held up very well :-) Color is dark dark root beer, it had a head to match but it's gone now, just a ring in my glass. Aroma promises all sorts of things, including dark chocolate, make it 60%. Tastewise, one is rewarded with more chocolate notes in the taste, a wider range than found in the aroma. I found the malt to be very prominent, but then the hops hit. The finish is hoppy, but not over the top. I think that's due to the malt being just so present. Solid medium mouthfeel, small fine carbonation. Drinkability is high due to the ease of which this goes down. Bring on this beer!

PatandDavid, Jan 13, 2005
Photo of BuckeyeNation
4.83/5  rDev +16.7%
look: 4.5 | smell: 4.5 | taste: 5 | feel: 4.5 | overall: 5

Dark chestnut with rubiginous highlights beneath a large, sturdy cap of light brown foam that displays admirable persistence; the gently rounded surface looks to be at the same level that it was several minutes ago. Random streaks and swirls of chunky lace stick steadfastly to the glass.

The nose is of chocolate covered hop cones and pine boughs. This is about what I expected, but it's still a treat. The sharply citric evergreen aroma is amazingly powerful, yet doesn't quite smother the roasted maltiness that identifies this as a porter. Other than restrained bittersweet chocolate, no other non-hop aromas are evident. Three Floyds and their hop obsession... gotta love 'em.

The flavor, like the nose, wields a hop cudgel and isn't afraid to swing it with force. It tastes like the brewers threw a couple of Christmas trees into the vats and let them sit for a few months. These hops are much more piney than they are citrusy; I'd be curious to know which varieties were used. Although the first several mouthfuls were almost overwhelmingly evergreen-like, I'm now able to discern the malty goodness underneath.

The first half of each mouthful is wall-to-wall hops, while the second half allows cinnamon-dusted, ground coffee bean-flecked, chocolate liqueur to strut its stuff. The malt backbone is rock solid, as it has to be to stand up to the greatest humulus lupulus assault on a porter that I've ever experienced. The mouthfeel is firmly medium with a creaminess that one usually finds only on bigger beers. If your hop tolerance is high, then this beer is as dangerously drinkable as they come.

I had a good idea what Alpha Klaus had in store before I cracked the crown, but that hasn't kept me from being impressed as hell (drinking is believing). While hops are far and away my first love, I also appreciate massively malty beer. Nothing wrong with combining the two into a two-headed beast of epic proportions. Kudos to Three Floyds for sheer audaciousness, originality and further evidence of genius. 'Christmas in a glass', 'the best of both worlds'... whatever you call it, call it great beer.

BuckeyeNation, Jan 11, 2005
Alpha Klaus Christmas (Xmas) Porter from Three Floyds Brewing Co. & Brewpub
93 out of 100 based on 1,758 ratings.