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Alpine Ale - Alpine Beer Company

Not Rated.
Alpine AleAlpine Ale

Educational use only; do not reuse.

136 Reviews
no score

(Send Samples)
Reviews: 136
Hads: 469
Avg: 3.67
pDev: 21.25%
Wants: 24
Gots: 43 | FT: 1
Brewed by:
Alpine Beer Company visit their website
California, United States

Style | ABV
American Pale Ale (APA) |  5.50% ABV

Availability: Year-round

Notes & Commercial Description:
Beer added by: BeerAdvocate on 06-21-2003

An Extra Pale Ale with a balanced malt and hop flavor. Moderate additions of Pacific Northwest Cascade and Centennial hops for a tangy, citrus flavor to complement the mild Carmel malt taste
Draft & 22 oz bottles.
View: Beers (45) | Events
Beer: Reviews & Ratings
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Reviews: 136 | Hads: 469
Photo of vacax
4.23/5  rDev +15.3%
look: 4 | smell: 3.5 | taste: 4.5 | feel: 4.5 | overall: 4.5

Pours a rich golden with one-inch white head. Retention is quite high, nice thick foam that leaves generous lace. Those nose is subdued compared to Alpine's other pale ales, but that does not mean this one is any slouch. There are a couple sharp hop notes, but not exceptionally aromatic ones. There is some pine, a bit of flora, and then just a bit of caramel malts to back it up.

The taste has a nice bitter floral hoppiness that comes immediately with a light sweetness. Pine and earthy hops appear in the finish. This is definitely a dialed back pale ale compared to Alpine's other offerings, but it is very balanced and tasty. There is just enough hops bite to it to satisfy, but still easy enough to session. It is bright and not loaded up with caramel, so for me this is a spot on pale ale. Medium bodied with a fine but medium-high level of carbonation. Just right. Recommended, but this is more of a style I would enjoy on draft or growler than in a six dollar bomber. Good pale ale!

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Photo of TexIndy
3.93/5  rDev +7.1%
look: 4.5 | smell: 4 | taste: 4 | feel: 4 | overall: 3.5

Bought at the brewery during my SD trip and shipped back. Poured from a 22oz bottle into a pint glass. Was a clear golden yellow color with good carb streams. It had an average sized white head that settled into a good collar and thin film. Good amounts of sticky lace.

The aroma was pale malts, bready with some citric hops in the back. More malt than hops. The taste was good and again was malty and bready with moderate dose of hops to counter the malt. Good tasting but more on the malty than hoppy side for me. Mouthfeel was medium body and crisp with moderate carbonation.

Overall, a good APA that would be even better with a few more aromatic hops in it. Definitely worth trying if you can easily get some. Really liking this brewery right now and would put this in the middle of the pack of their beers. Rotation: not avail here - shipped back. Wouldn't ship anymore back but would have on tap or at the brewery during my next trip to SD. [O;BO]

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Photo of Halcyondays
3.52/5  rDev -4.1%
look: 4 | smell: 2 | taste: 4 | feel: 4 | overall: 4

22 oz. bomber, suprised to see this show up in Orange County at Hi-Times,

A: Pours goldenrod/very light amber, with a solid white head and some nice lacing into an Imperial Pint glass.

S: To be honest, I'm not getting much, some faint hop notes, but challenged in this aspect.

T: The flavour comes back to redeem the beer. Nice complex malt notes, with a moderate West Coast hopping. Sweet pine, and some orange and lemon. Very similar to SNPA for my palate, good flavours.

M: Medium-bodied, soft carbonation, very smooth.

D: A pretty standard pale ale here, but a good one. Any fan of the classic APA will enjoy this beer IMO.

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Photo of Intelligentsia
3.57/5  rDev -2.7%
look: 3 | smell: 3.5 | taste: 3.5 | feel: 3.5 | overall: 4

Poured from a bomber. Pale bronze with a tiny head that disspaated quickly, leaving slight lacing. Nose was mostly bread, mild hops, citrus. Nothing earth shattering, but pleasant -- immediately identifiable as a pale ale. Taste progressed nicely from the nose, with a solid malt backbone and some nice bitterness that wasn't overpowering for the style. Tightly carbonated with a pleasant mouthfeel. Very quaffable at 5.5%. Probably won't buy it again, but it was a nice introduction to Alpine's beers.

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Photo of ArrogantB
3.56/5  rDev -3%
look: 4 | smell: 3 | taste: 3.5 | feel: 4 | overall: 4

22oz bottle purchased from SouthBay Drugs. Light golden color, clear, average head, looks like a pale ale. The smell was kind of like minerals and stale beer at first but as it warmed it got a little better but nothing special. The flavor was pretty balanced between the slightest citrus and hop bitterness and malt. This beer was quite easy to drink and I put it away fairly quick but it didn't really impress me as far as pale ales go, I'd prefer a fresh Alesmith X over this.

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Photo of glid02
3.8/5  rDev +3.5%
look: 3.5 | smell: 3.5 | taste: 4 | feel: 3.5 | overall: 4

Had on-tap at Blue Palms in Hollywood, CA.

Pours a clear bronze color with a one-finger white head. The head recedes into a wispy layer on top leaving light lacing.

Smells of pale malts with a slight bready quality and light citrus hops.

Tastes similar to how it smells. Bready pale malt flavors up front are joined midway through the sip by light grapefruit flavors. The ending has a solid bitterness.

Mouthfeel is good. It's a bit on the thin side with moderate carbonation.

Drinkability is good. I didn't have a problem finishing my glass and could have another.

Overall this is a good APA but nothing to write home about.

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Photo of gford217
3.9/5  rDev +6.3%
look: 3.5 | smell: 3.5 | taste: 4 | feel: 3.5 | overall: 4.5

Bottle shared by Georgiabeer at the Brick Store.

Pours a light, clear golden with a decent white head.

The aroma is light with citrus and floral hop hints and a solid bready malt smell in the background. There are also some toasted grains in there as well.

The taste has the same lemony hop taste as the aroma suggested as well as the bready malts and toasted grains. Interestingly, the overall taste seemed almost buttery which was not what I was expecting.

The mouthfeel is crisp and clean and it's a very refreshing brew overall.

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Photo of HalfFull
3.7/5  rDev +0.8%
look: 3.5 | smell: 3.5 | taste: 3.5 | feel: 3.5 | overall: 4.5

Pours a mostly clear golden orange into a pint glass with a half inch of short lived head, yet offering some surface carbonation and lacing throughout.

Very clean on the nose typical of an Extra Pale. Some light bready malts and a decent floral/citrus hop nose. Decent carbonation on the tongue with notes of orange/lemon and a lingering yet light finish of sweet orange oil. Offers a decent light to medium bodied feel, though a bit bubbly as for my preferences. Light and refreshing overall with many subtleties and nothing overpowering, an easy drinking ale.

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Photo of magictrokini
3/5  rDev -18.3%
look: 3 | smell: 3 | taste: 3 | feel: 3 | overall: 3

Pours clear gold with a bubbly white head. Grassy, hoppy aroma with lemon and some earth. Lighter tasting than expected, until I saw its an XPA. Crisp and metallic malt with a bit of hops; not too much, but enough to know they are there. Good enough.

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Photo of hopdog
3.7/5  rDev +0.8%
look: 3.5 | smell: 3.5 | taste: 4 | feel: 3.5 | overall: 3.5

22 oz bottle acquired in trade with DarkElf (thanks!).

Poured a medium golden color with an averaged sized white head. Aromas and tastes of pine, citrus, and light caramel. Light oranges in the tastes as well. Lightly bitter. Some lacing left on the glass.

Notes from 9/10/05

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Photo of rxdrewthejew
4.1/5  rDev +11.7%
look: 4 | smell: 4 | taste: 4 | feel: 4 | overall: 4.5

I don't see a lot of Alpine up here in LA, so I nabbed this when I saw it at Vendome. Poured into my Red Hook pint glass.

A: Yellow-orange and fairly clear aside from a few floties. Decent head to start, about one finger and orange-white, but not much retention. Lacing looks pretty good.

S: Nice crisp malt up front with a decent amount of sweetness. Behind this is a nice bit of citrus hops.

T: Good clean malt and sweetness quickly fades to a big citrusy flavor, mostly orange, but not particularly bitter. Good smooth flavor, but not boring.

MF: Thin bodied, but they don't try to overcompensate with too much carbonation, making this easy to drink but not boring in the mouth.

D: One of the best pale ale's I've had....nice sweetness and decent amount of hops, but not just hoppy without reason like so many APA's are. This isn't my favorite style...but this beer is as good as any in the style that I've had. Low ABV makes it super drinkable. Nice work.

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Photo of DefenCorps
4.6/5  rDev +25.3%
look: 4.5 | smell: 4.5 | taste: 4.5 | feel: 4.5 | overall: 5

Horrid, horrid day at work. Needed something to drink, enjoy and not knock me out (just yet). 22oz bottle, some of which is headed into my RRBC pint glass. Picked it up with my last SBDL order - thanks Joey! I'm told this has spent about 1 month in the bottle.

A: Crystal clear golden pour with a dense, 2 finger thick off-white head with good retention. Leaves some lacing. Pretty

S: Gentle citrus (orange) hop aroma that I'm guessing is Cascade? In any case, this smells really appealing right now - delicate, flavorful and with a hint of sweetness that includes honey and bready notes. This is really good stuff.

T: Starts off mildly hoppy with a citrus bitterness that's beautifully balanced by a great hop flavor with orange and mild floral notes. While there's a malt character with a very light honey-like sweetness, it's in excellent balance with the hop character. Finishes dry and mildly bitter.

M: Light in body, great carbonation, great finish - can't ask for more

D: What a beer! I'm absolutely loving this! It goes down ridiculously easy.

Notes: At the price (including shipping) I might not buy this often but if I'm in SoCal and i need an excellent beer to go with a business lunch (or just one that's sessionable), this would be it. Well done, Alpine, every single beer I've tried from you guys is a winner.

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Photo of cjgator3
3.88/5  rDev +5.7%
look: 4 | smell: 3.5 | taste: 4 | feel: 4 | overall: 4

A- Pours a light amber color with an off-white head that possesses good retention and lacing qualities.

S- The aroma is citrusy hops with some bready malt, pretty balanced.

T- The taste like the aroma is very smooth and balanced with some biscuity malt and citrusy hops.

M- Light bodied with a good mouthfeel.

D- Very drinkable, I wouldn't mind drinking a few more of these.

Overall, this is a very good West-coast APA that is highly recommended.

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Photo of Georgiabeer
3.88/5  rDev +5.7%
look: 4 | smell: 3.5 | taste: 4 | feel: 4 | overall: 4

Pours amber with a very nice head that sticks around aas aa cap and leaves some spotty lacing. Smells grainy, and perhaps even a bit soapy, but relatively clean otherwise with light citrusy hops and a bit of light breadiness. Definitely on the maltier side, but quite dry and a bit grainy as far as the taste goes. The hops taste earthier than they smelled and there is a small amount of lingering bitterness that cuts through the biscuity malt a bit. Fairly tasty, and quite dry while maintaining a bit of juiciness. Smooth and dry in the mouth with the slightest hint of graininess coming through. Very tasty and quite a nice session beer.

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Photo of largadeer
4.18/5  rDev +13.9%
look: 4.5 | smell: 4 | taste: 4 | feel: 4.5 | overall: 4.5

Appearance: Clear golden-amber with a dense layer of foam upon it. The torrent of rising carbonation is keeping the head going for longer than it's going to take me to finish this glass. A great looking beer for sure.

Smell: An even mix of zesty citrus hops and dry bready malts. Undertones of butterscotch or toffee. Clean and nicely balanced without being too one-dimensional.

Taste & mouthfeel: Semi-dry biscuit-like malts appear first, followed by a slight buttery slickness and finally fruity, oily hops (orange and lemon). Medium-bodied with a full flavor that doesn't linger on the palate too long. The finish is almost dry, but for a hint of caramel beneath the mild hop bitterness. This strikes me as an APA with an English influence.

Notes: Great stuff, this one exceeded my expectations.

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Photo of errantnight
3.31/5  rDev -9.8%
look: 4 | smell: 3 | taste: 3 | feel: 3.5 | overall: 4

Well a long time ago Grover in Boston brought some Pure Hoppiness to a Stone tasting at the Wine Cellar in Brookline... and ever since then I've had a great and enduring love for that beer. My grandfather lives not far from Alpine, and although I've still never been to the brewery (I seem to always be down to visit him on Sundays), whenever I'm in the area I pick up a couple bombers to satiate me.

So when I started to see Alpine pop up in LA county... I was super excited, even if it wasn't the Pure Hoppiness for which I pined.

This is my first tasting, and it was a bit of a disappointment.

Poured a pale clear golden, bubbly, thin-headed, into my Levitation tulip. Decent head that stayed, looks a lot like a pale ale, maybe a bit more orange.

Aroma and taste are solid, but muted. Far too subtle even for a pale (IMO). You've got some west-coast styled hops (citrus, floral predominate) and it's balanced by a grainy malt backbone, but both are barely there. Mouthfeel is a bit on the thin side, too.

I could session this until the cows come home... but at what, 5 bucks a bottle, why? It's not a bad beer, but we're inundated with IPAs and pale ales out here, and while if this was the house pale ale on tap at some local brewpub I'd be happy to lap it up every day, it's really not worth your attention except to try it. I'll revisit someday, but it won't be a pressing concern.

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Photo of kirok1999
3.76/5  rDev +2.5%
look: 4.5 | smell: 3.5 | taste: 3.5 | feel: 3.5 | overall: 4.5

Pours a clear light copper with a moderate, wispy light head.
A very mild smell, just a little pine hops and some sweetness from the malts.
Smooth and mellow taste, slight malt sweetness with a nice bitter and dry finish. The malts and hops balance well.
Very smooth with a tight carbonation.
Easy to drink, very mellow and mild, definitely not an extreme beer but very drinkable.

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Photo of mithrascruor
3.76/5  rDev +2.5%
look: 4 | smell: 3 | taste: 4 | feel: 4 | overall: 4

On tap at Pizza Port, Solana Beach.

Pours a nice amber-copper color with rather visible carbonation. Very little detectable in the aroma. Light-bodied and tingly from the carbonation. Nicely balanced with hops and malts in the flavor. Will have again; found it quite refreshing and drinkable.

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Photo of MiScusi
3.07/5  rDev -16.3%
look: 4.5 | smell: 2.5 | taste: 3 | feel: 4 | overall: 3

This was on tap at Liars' Club, served in a pint glass. Looked very nice with a golden light orange color. The smell and the taste were just way too lacking for me. I couldn't detect an oz. of hops in the aroma and neither in the taste. It was very grainy and definitely very light. There was nothing about this beer that would want to make me order it again, although it does deliver as a light, low taste alternative to something like a standard light lager or something.

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Photo of rallison
3.85/5  rDev +4.9%
look: 4 | smell: 4 | taste: 3.5 | feel: 3.5 | overall: 4.5

A: Clear golden amber with a 1 finger white head that recedes to lacing.

S: Lemony hops seem to be the main component here.

T: Lemony hops on top of a light, relatively clean malt body. Touch of sweetness is back there. Slightly sharp in flavor, with a touch of grassiness. Finishes with a slight bitterness. To me, the flavor is decent, but doesn't quite come together like I'd like.

M: A touch light to my taste, with good carbonation.

D: Very good.

Overall a pretty good, sessionable APA.

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Photo of Stoneman78
4.2/5  rDev +14.4%
look: 4 | smell: 4 | taste: 4 | feel: 4 | overall: 5

On draft at O'Brien's
A- Clear light orange hue, minimal white ring of bubbles, moderate lacing
S- Clean, crisp scent, light bread malts, light floral/citrus/earthy hops
T- Very refreshing taste characterized by bread/biscuit malts, subtle hops come in slowly and finishes dry
M- Light-bodied, watery texture, moderate carbonation
D- Solid and well-balanced pale ale, very refreshing, no noticeable alcohol presence, strong session beer that I could drink all night long

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Photo of NJpadreFan
3.7/5  rDev +0.8%
look: 3.5 | smell: 3.5 | taste: 4 | feel: 3.5 | overall: 3.5

Alpine Ale

Thanks to Rallison for this 1.

A- Light clear orange with a foamy head. Good retention and lacing.
S- Earthy/ grassy hops with a light citrus twang.
T- Yeasty hay/ straw with an earthy hop flavor. Touch of grass, lemon, and honey in the end.
M- Very crisp with a mild dry bitter body and finish.

Overall- A little lighter than I was expecting but enjoyable and easily drinkable. I, casually, downed a 22oz'er in under 10 minutes.

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Photo of nohead02
4.74/5  rDev +29.2%
look: 4 | smell: 5 | taste: 5 | feel: 4 | overall: 4.5

I love this brew. I hear that Alpine Brewing is going to expand its production so maybe this will be easier to find in the future. It has a slightly cloudy copper appearance. The head is relatively small and subsides quickly and hugs the glass. But sakes alive the aroma it puts out grabs you. Nice combo of hoppy floral, citrus and maybe a bit of pine. Complex array of flavors with perfect bitterness mixed with right amount of maltiness. I live a half hour or so from the brewery and really need to make a trip there.

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Photo of Bighuge
4.27/5  rDev +16.3%
look: 4 | smell: 4.5 | taste: 4 | feel: 4.5 | overall: 4.5

Crystal clear copper. Thin, bubbly dirty white head. Not much for retention, but lace is left behind in moderate amounts. Really nice bright citric tones on the nose. Like grapefruit and lemon. And a little caramel underneath it as well. This is a nice tasting APA. Nicely balanced and highly drinkable. The caramel malts provide a nice little base for the hops to work. Hops are fairly bright in their presence. Citrus and grapefruit come to mind. Lemon rind and cracked black pepper. A nice subdued bitterness lingers. Mouthfeel is crisp and lively. Medium body. This one reminds me of the SNPA, which is not a bad thing. I believe this would pair nicely with grilled salmon steaks with olive oil and coarsely cracked pepper. Or crab cakes. Or chicken quesadillas. Or...

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Photo of BuckeyeNation
4.25/5  rDev +15.8%
look: 4.5 | smell: 4.5 | taste: 4 | feel: 4 | overall: 4.5

Shimmering harvest gold with a dash of juicy orange. A few steady streams of bubbles make their way though a sparse cloud of fine particulates to join the wonderful looking alabaster head... that is one of the thickest, creamiest and stickiest that I've seen on an APA in quite some time. An impressive array of lace makes the score an easy call.

There are few things in this world as deliciously aromatic as Cascade and Centennial hops when utilized by talented brewers. Kudos to Alpine for giving this ale a tremendously bright, tremendously hoppy nose that is full to bursting with sweet, snappy citrus zest.

The flavor is excellent as well, even if it commits two (minor, borderline nitpicky) sins. First of all, there's a tad too much caramel malt flavor for me. I like APAs that use nothing but pale malt so that the glory of the hops can be displayed to maximum effect. Second, there isn't quite enough resiny hoppiness. Yes, I'm well aware that this beer isn't meant to be to be an IPA.

As far as the brewery's claim of balance, I'd say that they're correct in that assertion. It might favor hops a bit, but that's all to the better. Sweet grapefruit and orange are the dominant hop-derived flavors with a trace amount of resiny pine noted on the finish. This is a hophead's session beer if I've tasted one.

The body/mouthfeel is medium to slightly more full for the style thanks to the rounded edges smoothness of the malt. While it doesn't quite reach IPA territory, it is bigger than the average pale ale. An understated amount of carbonation keeps things moving along without making a nuisance of itself.

I can't believe it took me this long to drink another Alpine beer after tasting the magnificence that is Pure Hoppiness. Alpine Ale is disappearing shockingly quickly and is one of the more compulsively drinkable APAs in recent memory. Even though the taste scores are identical, I do believe I prefer this beer to Stone Pale Ale and to AleSmith X (among the San Diego County contingent). High praise indeed.

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Alpine Ale from Alpine Beer Company
83 out of 100 based on 136 ratings.