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.

722 Reviews
no score

(Send Samples)
Reviews: 722
Hads: 2,023
Avg: 4.16
pDev: 10.34%
Wants: 269
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
Sort by:  Recent | High | Low | Top Raters
Reviews: 722 | Hads: 2,023
Photo of nvsblman
4.32/5  rDev +3.8%
look: 4 | smell: 4.5 | taste: 4.5 | feel: 4 | overall: 4

Opaque black with a thick, coffee colored head. Great roasty aroma with coffee, chocolate, earthy hops, and a little bit of something herbal in the background. Maybe mint? Really complex flavor with a mix of brown sugar, coffee, and chocolate primarily. There's a nice, strong hoppiness without being a citrusy hop bomb. Also noticing a bit of the herbal note in the flavor. Well carbonated and medium bodied. This is a really flavorful and enjoyable beer!

 456 characters

Photo of oracle
3.58/5  rDev -13.9%
look: 4 | smell: 3.5 | taste: 3.5 | feel: 4 | overall: 3.5

After hearing months of talk, all anxiously awaiting this particular brew, I waited breathlessly for Roger to bring me my 20 oz imperial pint (serverd in a traditional english pint glass). Maybe I need to drink more porters to compare, because this was just not quite as good as I was led to believe it was, although it is quite good. It's just not one of the all time greats.

This was a deep dark black hole of a beer, from which no light could escape. It had a 1/2 inch head of dense creamy tan foam that left slightly less lacing than I expected it to, based on the way it looked.

Smell was pleasant. Lots of sweet malt, with mild toffee and carmel notes.

Tasting this beer was a very very slight let down. I guess that based on all the comments I had been hearing, in my mind I had built this up to be the be-all and end-all of all porters. Now don't get me wrong. This is one darn fine porter. I'm just not sure it's worth getting as worked up over as some people I have seen do.

It's rich, smooth and delicious. Lots of mild sweet malt, small coffee flavor in the finish.

Overall, it's a very good beer.

 1,124 characters

Photo of 312HopBomb
4.53/5  rDev +8.9%
look: 5 | smell: 4.5 | taste: 4.5 | feel: 4.5 | overall: 4.5

22 oz bomber/ 3 Floyds Imperial Pint glass

Dark chocolate color with ruby highlights. Huge rocky head falls slowly to a foamy cap.

Smells like a cirus bowl. Lemon, orange and grapefruit hops are fresh as can be with some floral and corriander. Chocolate malt and sugar cookie. Some slight espresso roast.

Taste starts with bold citrus hops much like the nose. Hops fade into a great roast with sweet chocolate and slight coffee and a roasty toasty malt finish but the hops hold their own and blend nicely.

Mouthfeel is moderate to full. Slightly chewy. Medium carbonation.

This is better than I remember from last year and I loved it. 3 Floyds has some kind of secret weapon that utilizes hops to perfection.

 713 characters

Photo of DavidEddie
4.43/5  rDev +6.5%
look: 4.5 | smell: 4 | taste: 4.5 | feel: 4 | overall: 5

2007 vintage
Poured a dark cola brown but black in appearance. Khaki head that reduces to some sticky lacing. The first initial aroma is chocolate and piney hops. As it warmed, a black liquorish (Jagermeister) scent appeared. After my sip I tasted chocolate, coffee, roasty malt and burnt carmel. Finishes with some crisp citrus piney hops. Perfectly balanced. Mouth feel is creamy then oily and coating. Good carbonation. Overall drinkability is excellent. Full flavored without being over powering. AVB is well hidden. Highly recommend!

 538 characters

Photo of 0110x011
4.43/5  rDev +6.5%
look: 4.5 | smell: 4 | taste: 4.5 | feel: 4 | overall: 5

pours a murky black into a British pint. Enormous frothy head lasts and lasts, leaving a nice cap and thick, chunky lacing. Aroma is a beautiful bouquet of coffee, chocolate, caramel, and floral and piney hops. Chocolate and coffee on the tongue, with pine and earth from the hops, and some vanilla and roastyness. Bubbly carbonation takes away from the creamyness, but its still very drinkable for the ABV.

This was a wonderful surprise! A porter unlike any I've had so far. Chocolaty, yet hoppy; thick, but not syrupy. An overall fantastic brew. One that I'll be looking for again. Huge thanks to younger35 for the opportunity!

 630 characters

Photo of numenor1
4.58/5  rDev +10.1%
look: 5 | smell: 4.5 | taste: 4.5 | feel: 4 | overall: 5

Pours very thick black, forming an enormous dark tan head. A bit unexpected, this is almost impyish in appearance. Beautiful lacing. Nose is full of coffee molasses, burnt cherries, even a bit of vanilla. Very deep. Taste is pretty damned impressive. Upfront there's a stab of sweetness, but it's quickly overridden by an onslaught of burnt molasses, deep caramel, coffee and burnt dark fruits. There's more than a little bit of woodyness, from hops perhaps? and at the same time a note of green hops as well, and a vague yet profound citrus hop undertone. Midpalate there's a sensation of bittersweet chocolate (70%), which is incredibly impressive and not a compliment i concede lightly. It makes the beer. Substantial supporting bitterness. It all ends in a lingering dry roasty note and a very storng ebbing hoppiness. Body is medium with good supporting medium low carbonation. Somewhere between chewy and creamy. Very drinkable. I like it.

 945 characters

Photo of JCaweinstein
4.38/5  rDev +5.3%
look: 4.5 | smell: 4 | taste: 4.5 | feel: 4.5 | overall: 4.5

black with two finger tan head, head is ver dense and creamy, nice lacing left down the glass.

I smelled chocolate and hops and was also able to smell the alcohol which kind of caught me by surprise.

I tasted chocolate first then a nice touch of hop bitterness. There is a bit of sweetness but it's not over bearing. I found this brew to be very tasty indeed.

Full bodied beer that coats the mouth, is very smooth and finishes with a mixture of chocolate and hops while leaving a bitter aftertaste.

This Christmass Porter is delicious. The chocolate and hops are working well together, it's nice to look at and it feels good going down. One of my favorite holiday beers.

 674 characters

Photo of warrenout330
4.55/5  rDev +9.4%
look: 4.5 | smell: 4.5 | taste: 4.5 | feel: 5 | overall: 4.5

Thanks to my boy Pat at cavalier for a case... your clutch man

A- pours a deep dark brown, actually nearly black in some angles... big thick tan colored
Head... stays around for a bit... very sticky blotting to the glass

S- Christmas tree pine... huge flavor of chocolate malt, roasted coffee... sweet dark fruit essence

T- first sip reveals a fairy balanced pine sappyness... which leads the way for the English chocolate malt.. following up behind is a roasty coffee fling.. ending with a overall hop balance with a reminiscent mint mouth... this beer really reminds me of Christmas... strange

M- medium bodied... stellar carbonation... slight chewy/creamy mouth feel.. as it warms to room temp... it almost becomes oily in some aspects... delightful

O- I really can't get enough from this brewery.... that's all I have to say...good day

 845 characters

Photo of jahred
3.95/5  rDev -5%
look: 4 | smell: 4 | taste: 4 | feel: 3.5 | overall: 4

I finally found a bottle of this stuff! Of course, post-XMas, but it's still cold plenty cold outside in Chicago... Let's see what all the hype is about.

Pours a very dark black with a medium head. Not much retention, but lots of nice lace on the glass. The scent - wow. Like a liquid pine forest, for lack of a better description. But I didn't detect any spiced flavors/anything resembling the holiday season.

The taste is bitter, with creamy, subtle hints of malt, espresso and chocolate. But then there's that overpowering, hoppy taste. I like it quite a bit, but it's a bit much - it doesn't allow me to really taste all the complex, underlying flavors that I know are there. It's more of a slightly spiced IPA than anything else. Also disappointing was the mouthfeel - despite what I'd read/expected from such a complex beer, my bottle was kind of thin.

Maybe I didn't have the best bottle? Maybe some of the extra flavors disappeared on the shelves over a few months? Alpha Klaus was quite interesting, but not as good as I'd hoped.

 1,047 characters

Photo of shanblur
3.92/5  rDev -5.8%
look: 3.5 | smell: 4 | taste: 4 | feel: 3.5 | overall: 4

On tap at the Beer Trappe in Lexington, KY. Served in a snifter.

A - Dark color with a tan head which leaves moderate lacing.

S - Roasted and chocolate malts dominate over a piney hops.

T - Nice balance of the roasted malts and piney hops, with a bit more hops.

M - Smooth with a light carbonation.

A nice mix of roasted malt and hops.

 340 characters

Photo of bigbubba
4.2/5  rDev +1%
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.

 369 characters

Photo of Boppar
4.24/5  rDev +1.9%
look: 5 | smell: 3.5 | taste: 4.5 | feel: 4 | overall: 4.5

"And what would you like for Christmas this year?"
"Well Santa, just once I'd like to be impressed by a porter."

I don't mind porters by any stretch. But they tend to make me feel that they're missing something. Maybe I just want them to be stouts. Who knows. But this beer has changed my perspective on that, because I finally found a porter that wowed me.

From a bomber, it pours a very deep black color with an amazingly large head of foam. Good lacing, and nice head retention before it settles into elegant lace after a couple minutes.

Coffee and toffee on the nose. Maybe a small amount of non-descript dark fruit.

The taste is a rich maltiess, the way a porter should be, with nice coffee tones, and a very well-balanced hoppy bitterness. What I enjoyed most about this beer was that the hops were perfectly in balance with the malt. They were just assertive enough to be like, "Yo, I'm here," but they really didn't interfere with anything else going on palate-wise.

This beer was a good thickness and had some nice weight to it. Perfectly in keeping with the porter style, yet somehow more satisfying than normal.

And as far as drinkability, I could session these. If there had been more of them, and I hadn't had to drive a friend home, I would have.

 1,280 characters

Photo of manahansf
4.84/5  rDev +16.3%
look: 4 | smell: 5 | taste: 5 | feel: 5 | overall: 4.5

Pours a deep and dark brown color with a thin and creamy brown head. The aroma is complex and intriguing with a masterful mix of roasted malt, citrus hops, and sprucey freshness. The flavor is just as interesting with a surprising burst of citrus hops followed by a smooth transition into a background flavor of roasted malt. The finish sees the introduction of the piney flavor mixed in with a slightly sweet and tart malt flavor. The finish ends cleanly and fresh with a farewell kiss of alcohol.

 498 characters

Photo of hopsleeroy
4.27/5  rDev +2.6%
look: 3.5 | smell: 4 | taste: 4.5 | feel: 4 | overall: 4.5

Thanks to JDV and pintsized for sharing.

A-Almost looks like a cola to me. Black with carbonation bubbles running up the side. Head didn't stick around.
S-Chocolate, molasses, slightly floral hoppiness, and a little bit minty
T-Nice roasted malt, chocolate, some licorice, floral hop increases as it warms. Very tasty.
M-Crisp in the mouth, medium to full body, maybe a little over carbonated
D-I would have hogged the whole bomber if they had let me. This review should also be considered an ISO for Alpha Klaus Porter.

 521 characters

Photo of youngblood
4.25/5  rDev +2.2%
look: 4.5 | smell: 4.5 | taste: 4 | feel: 4 | overall: 4.5

A - Pours a dark brown, almost like wet brownie mix. Chunky tan head hovers over the top.
S - Oddly enough, this smells a lot like a rich chocolate brownie. There's also a bit of fresh pine in there, not really misplaced, but it does make the nose of this interesting. Some toasted coffee notes also.
T - Initial flavors were coffee, toffee, chocolate and as it left my palate I'm left with a piney chocolate flavor. Very interesting. I like it. Alot.
M - Nice and chewy, less chewy than a stout, but only slightly.
D - Could have several of these. No flavor is overpowering or hurts the palate.

 595 characters

Photo of faernt
4.32/5  rDev +3.8%
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.

 626 characters

Photo of maundythirsty
3.31/5  rDev -20.4%
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

Photo of cadizkyguy
4.33/5  rDev +4.1%
look: 4.5 | smell: 4 | taste: 4.5 | feel: 4 | overall: 4.5

Another Yummy brew from Three Floyds. Gumballhead and Dreadnaught are among my fav's. Too bad I only have one bottle of this seasonal brew, but Christmas is only eight months away, so I will definitely be asking Santa for more. So onto the review... poured into a pint glass, leaving a good portion still in the bottle. Appearance is pitch black with a one inch frothy head. It smells wonderful, like a Christmas porter should smell with chocolate being the dominant feature. Taste, well, is good, but I'm gonna let it warm up a bit before really diving in. The taste develops as it warms; I don't think this beer is meant to be consumed refrigerator cold, in the same way Three Floyds' Moloko Plus improved as it warmed and the carbonation of that brew became more tolerable. As this Three Floyds brew warms up, the frothy head disappears, leaving only lacing on the Samuel Smith pint glass. Three Floyds does a very nice job of blending in the hops, as the hops do add a very nice kick to this Christmas Porter. A very enjoyable brew. Thanks Three Floyds.

 1,057 characters

Photo of Mudpuppet
3.23/5  rDev -22.4%
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 hayesez
4.43/5  rDev +6.5%
look: 5 | smell: 4.5 | taste: 4.5 | feel: 3.5 | overall: 4.5

Been drinking the Alpha Klaus for several years now, but after quite some time on the site, I've finally started keeping some here goes.

Drank this one at Sonka Irish Pub, here in Terre Haute. Poured a deep dark brown into a standard pint glass. A two finger cream head sticks around for the majority of this session. On the lower end of the carbonation scale the Alpha Klaus left a thick, sticky, spider web lace along the top 2/3 of my pint. What a great looking beer!

This beer has changed over the years. The substantial piney hops have given way to a bit more citrus. As you know, Three Floyd's loves to pound the hops, and this beer is no exception. The pine is still there, don't get me wrong, but the prominent smell has moved toward the citrus. Getting your nose in there gets you that maltiness you'd expect from a porter, but you have to work at it. This is one of the things I love about Three Floyd's - they take a beer, hop the hell out of it, and pull it off time after time.

Still a fantastic tasting brew. This is one of those beers that really throws a curveball at you. If you were to base your taste "guess" solely on the appearance, you'd probably be way off. I've had dozens of these over the years and every time I have to do a double take after my first swig. Once you get past the hops, a malty sweetness turns to a slight coffee before making a clean and quick exit. This really is a crisp beer that punches you in the mouth before slipping out the back of the bar, leaving you to wonder what the hell just happened.

I could sit back and drink several of these fine beers. It is medium bodied and pours right down. I know a lot of people compare this to a heavier stout, but I actually lean in the other direction a bit. While the appearance and the middle taste might emulate a stout, the hoppiness, citrus smell/taste, and clean finish impersonate an IPA. All in all, this is one captivating brew.

I highly recommend giving this one a shot off the tap, if possible. I find it to be a lot more crisp and clean than the bottled version, although just as tasty.

Consumed - 12/12/09

 2,124 characters

Photo of leftmindedrighty
3.11/5  rDev -25.2%
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 CruisaC
4.2/5  rDev +1%
look: 4 | smell: 4 | taste: 4.5 | feel: 4 | overall: 4

Poured from a bomber into my New Belgium tulip

Pours a dark brown, almost black with almost an inch of tan foam. Leaves nice lacing on the glass

Smells of hops, moreso than I would expect based off the appearance

Taste is dominated by hops upfront but before you realize it transforms into mild coffee and chocolate, not overly sweet

I could drink this beer without much problem. I'm not always in the mood for that flavor profile but when I am it will be a nice option. I have another bottle chilling in the basement so we'll see what it's like in a bit.

Another solid offering from FFF

 592 characters

Photo of seedsofchaos
4.44/5  rDev +6.7%
look: 4 | smell: 5 | taste: 4 | feel: 5 | overall: 4.5

3 Floyds Alpha Klaus was one of the few beers that really surprised me in 2011. I had it for the first time during our NYE celebration and split it amongst a few friends. I decided that with my last bomber I would be selfish and write up a proper review.

It's really a great looking Porter. Dark like a fine cup of Joe, Alpha Klaus is topped with a thick cappuccino-colored head. The head dies off eventually to just a skimming but spiderwebs fantastically.

With a bouquet filled with hops, 3 Floyds stays true to their uncompromising modi operandi. Roasted barley takes place center stage along with a nose full of piney/earthy, floral and juicily citric hops. I don't know how to say this without sounding weird, but this is a juicy smelling porter. Lots of great caramel and coffee notes come through as well and help make this solidly an "A" beer.

First thing to hit the palate are definitely the notes of roasted coffee. Mouthful after mouthful, roasted barley and chocolate malt are the key players well-rounded with earthy hops. Though there seems to be a lot of hop aroma in the nose, hops don't overwhelm the mouth. They don't underwhelm either. A little bit of citrus, a good amount of pine and just the right bittering.. I don't use the word 'awesome' to describe a beer too often but... Awesome.

Smooth, a bit creamy and highly drinkable makes 3 Floyds Alpha Klaus Christmas Porter a clear winner in my humble opinion. Though I'm always willing to share, I was glad to have this bomber all for myself.

 1,519 characters

Photo of tar
4.42/5  rDev +6.3%
look: 4 | smell: 4.5 | taste: 4.5 | feel: 4 | overall: 4.5

During the holiday season I enjoyed this both on-tap and from a bottle (I really got behind at transferring my notes to the site). This review is based on a 22 oz. bottle. The familiar "Alpha King" exchanges his crown for a Santa hat on another of Three Floyd's great looking labels. Pours a dark, dark brown with a thick frothy tan/off-white head. Hoppy floral aroma and citrus scents make themselves known right away--a bit reminiscent of Dreadnaught in smell. Tastes very nicely of chocolatey roasted malt with a great hop finish. This is a smooth, highly drinkable, and very enjoyable beer. Overall this was definitely one of my favorites of the Christmas season and I am definitely looking forward to having it again next year.

 732 characters

Photo of Birdiebeagle
4.3/5  rDev +3.4%
look: 4.5 | smell: 4.5 | taste: 4 | feel: 4.5 | overall: 4.5

Bottle Pours a clear dark brown with a fizzy light brown head. Head is pretty diminishing with good lacing. Has a great malty aroma of good chocolate. Has a little grain too and just enough hops to keep in blended very nicely. Has a thin texture and a mediun body. A decent amount of carbination. Has good flavors. Definately not a beer that would make you afraid of the dark. Has a nice light bitter finish. This is very good, well done 3F’s.

 444 characters

Alpha Klaus Christmas (Xmas) Porter from 3 Floyds Brewing Co.
93 out of 100 based on 722 ratings.