Emerson - Alpine Beer Company

Not Rated.
EmersonEmerson

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BA SCORE
87
very good

47 Ratings
THE BROS
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no score

(send 'em beer!)
Ratings: 47
Reviews: 39
rAvg: 3.9
pDev: 9.49%
Wants: 3
Gots: 3 | FT: 0
Brewed by:
Alpine Beer Company visit their website
California, United States

Style | ABV
German Pilsener |  6.00% ABV

Availability: Rotating

Notes/Commercial Description:
This beer is retired; no longer brewed.

Inspired by owner/brewer Pat McIllhenneys travels to New Zealand, this beer uses imported New Zealand organic hops.

(Beer added by: xlperro on 06-17-2005)
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Ratings: 47 | Reviews: 39 | Display Reviews Only:
Photo of beagle75
3.88/5  rDev -0.5%
look: 2.5 | smell: 3.5 | taste: 4 | feel: 4.5 | overall: 4

Poured from a bomber into a tulip glass.

A: Slightly hazy, pale golden color with less than one finger of diminishing white foam head. Heavy lacing remains on the glass. A few bubbles are observed to rise in the column while tiny floaties are plentiful, hanging motionless.

S: Very herbaceous and lemony, dank--bordering on skunky--at first but then turning minty. Malt presence is debatable, but does seem to serve a supporting role by contributing some light backbone.

T: Begins dry, with very honest grapefruit citrus flesh that begins to yield some of its initial intensity after a few minutes. Grass remains as soft pilsner malt appears, staying understated until late. Acidity is very pleasant, being both mild and uplifting. There is a slight vinous thread that seems to bleed from the middle into the beginning more as other hop aromatics fade. Bitterness is fairly mild, with some aromatic mint and citrus detectable to buoy interest.

M: Thin to medium viscosity, soft and refreshing on the palate, with moderate carbonation.

D/O: Intriguing but not intense or extreme, this beer generates appeal from its unorthodox combining of pilsner grain with intensely aromatic hops. While the sensory profile is not unique among American-brewed experimental lagers, this beer has a drinkability edge on its contemporaries thanks to the mere 6% abv. Surprisingly, it benefits from the gradual warming that occurs in the glass; it seems simplistic when at its coldest, but nuances emerge as the beer warms and aggressive grapefruit fades.

Photo of Blakaeris
4/5  rDev +2.6%
look: 4 | smell: 4 | taste: 4 | feel: 4 | overall: 4

Pours ]light golden yellow with a dense creamy head that leaves slight lacing.

Aroma is surprisingly intense. Light fruit and fresh cracked pepper, with a good bit of yeasty funk.

Taste is pale biscuit malt along with nice caramel notes. Then the strong hop notes take over. Initially resinous grapefruit, then the grassy, spicy saaz hop funk takes over. Finishes crisp with a lingering spice warmth.

Mouthfeel is light-medium bodied. Nice resinous hop oil coating.

Overall very crisp and flavorful. Plenty of light fruit and peppery funk to keep things interesting.

Photo of Dreadnaught33
3.63/5  rDev -6.9%
look: 4 | smell: 4 | taste: 3.5 | feel: 3.5 | overall: 3.5

Had this bottle a while back, just found notes.

A: Small bubbly head dies to nothing but a ring. A golden hued and semi clear beer.

S: Smells nice with a great dry hop presence typical of Alpine. Some sunflower seeds and grainy malts basically make up the malt profile, pretty solid aroma.

T: Has a lager like grainy bready malt base with some crisp dry grass hops. Some savory meat like tastes run over the palate and are tempered/disguised by lemon grass and more clean malts. Interesting.

M: Crisp and medium, a little spicy, nothing special.

O: Wasn't crazy about this but it is a good beer.

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

22oz bomber to my Alpine pint glass

A: Emerson pours a classic crystal clear goldenrod straw color with tons of bubbily action. Fizzy 2 finger white soap-like foam head forms and has some decent retention with cascading lace.

S: Grapefruit and tangerine. Just a bunch of crazy exotic tropical fruits that really spike at the nose. Kiwi. Passionfruit? Sure and a touch of grainy Pilsner malts. Faint as it is.

T: Super hoppy with lots of citric zing. Tangerines. White wine grapes. Tropical. Light and Fruity like an IPA but just a touch of that German Pils malt character reminding you it's not. Lil bit of sugar tartness in the cheeks. Dry crisp finish. The epitomy of a sessiony Lawnmower beer. Very refreshing on a hot day.

M: Super dry and light mouthfeel with an increased bitterness level.

D: A super hoppy Pilsner. Well I can get on board with that. Drinkability is tops with this super light and refreshingly hoppy Pils.

Alpine has me convinced I love NZ hops! Very exotic in flavor and almost has the feel of a sparkling white wine. But this is a Pilsner dammit and it's pretty tasty.

Photo of imyourhero21
4/5  rDev +2.6%

Photo of John11486
4/5  rDev +2.6%

Photo of BdubleEdubleRUN
3.9/5  rDev 0%
look: 4 | smell: 4 | taste: 4 | feel: 4 | overall: 3.5

Had a few bottles and on tap, review is from bottle.

A- Pours a bubbly yellowish orange with a frothy white head.
S- Citrus, grass, pine, grapefruit.
T- Apricot, bitter sweetness, pleasently sweet and bitter balance, pine.
M- Medium-soft body, lubricating, residual hop bite.
O- Keeping in mind the style this is probably the best I have had, granted well done pilsner seems fairly hard to find for some reason.
Just noticed its listed under German Pilsener, curious why its not under Imperial Pilsner.

Photo of NittanyBeerFan
3.58/5  rDev -8.2%
look: 4 | smell: 3.5 | taste: 3.5 | feel: 4 | overall: 3.5

Thanks to dyan for sharing this growler courtesy of ArthurPendragon. The growler came complete with his old avatar pasted to the lid.

The color is copper-hued amber, slightly hazed from the shipping/travel (it arrived just before dyan drove up with it), and the body is topped off by a huge 3-finger sticky and fluffy head that leaves huge thick clumps of foam smattered all over the sides of the tulip from which I drink.

Spicy, earthy, and funky hops from New Zealand remind me of a Czech pils. There are some bready and earthy notes from the yeast and breadyness from the malts round it out. The taste is pretty much an extension of the aroma, with some welcome additions. Grassy hops augment the spicier ones from the aroma, and the mid palate is extremely herbal, bringing on even minty hints. Bready malts again play a large role.

There is a bit too much unpolished yeast character, in my opinion, as the earthy and bready character detracts from the clean feel and aroma that I feel should accompany a great pils. Really glad I got to enjoy this with some great company.

Photo of rand
3.63/5  rDev -6.9%
look: 4 | smell: 4 | taste: 3.5 | feel: 3.5 | overall: 3.5

From bottle to Pilsner glass

A: Golden-yellow in color, forms a frothy 2-inch head in the pils glass, leaving patchy lacing everywhere. A surprising amount of suspended yeast swirls about.

S: Floral and effervescent - do I detect of hint of champagne? Yep, it's there...something with the combination of New Zealand hops and biscuity bottom-fermenting yeast is reminding me of the bubbly stuff, although I can't detect anything distinctly grape-like. A touch of sweet malts, unprocessed grains linger.

T: The hops distinguish this Pils and jump out in front, which are more floral than citrusy. Almost tastes wet-hopped. This is quickly met with a cracker-y middle, carrying a sweet multi-grain undertone. The floral hop snap highlights the sweet notes of the brew, in what is otherwise a traditionally dry style, but that sweetness lingers a bit at the finish.

M: Light to medium bodied, but seemingly more viscous than many Pilsners. Carbonation is more foamy than crisp and cleansing.

Damn tasty, and if you feel like a pils with some hop-forward layering, you could do a lot worse. But it's not the most harmoniously rounded flavor profile and needs to be a little more crisp. I'm all for coloring outside-the-lines when it comes to beer styles, but a Pilsner loses a few points if it isn't relatively dry and refreshing.

Photo of ChadQuest
3.78/5  rDev -3.1%
look: 3.5 | smell: 3 | taste: 4 | feel: 4 | overall: 4

I am trying to decide of this will be biased, i haven't had a beer in many days, and i worked 11hrs at work and a pilsner is going to be perfect with dinner.

Color is a slightly hazy orange with white head/collar, looks like i need to drink it.
The aroma is clean with cereal grains and earthy hops.
The flavors are muted a bit as this one is chilled from the fridge, but is tasty and drinks way to fast i had to slow down to give it a chance to warm, dear lord i hate how that sounds, but it was enjoyable to drink chilled with my food, which was curried rice that was insanely packed with flavor...anyway. After i let it warm the flavors popped a bit more of those noble hops that exhibit a touch of citrus to brighten things up a bit, and clean bready malts. a clean and simple Pils good for doing what Pilsners are good at, being refreshing with a hop kick.

Photo of soze47
4.05/5  rDev +3.8%
look: 4 | smell: 4 | taste: 4 | feel: 4.5 | overall: 4

Reviewed from notes. Bomber was purchased at the brewery bar very late May, 2011. Drank it that night.

Nice golden yellow, not really orange at all. Lots of fluffy head that leaves great lacing. It really smells hoppy on the nose. Grassy and hints of citrus and white wine tang (I think thats the NZ hop variety Alpine uses in their brews). Enough malt to help sweeten the brew a bit, but it still finishes very dry. Light enough in body to drink a whole bomber rather quickly! Nicely carbonated to allow the flavors to stay light.

Great brew, but not at all a traditional pilsener. My father thought it was one of the better beers he has tried since I got into craft beer.

Photo of Romulux
4/5  rDev +2.6%

Photo of ibbjamin
3.68/5  rDev -5.6%
look: 4 | smell: 3.5 | taste: 3.5 | feel: 4 | overall: 4

Picked up a bomber from Perry's in Livermore and pour into my Beck's stange to review.

White and very yellow beery looking head of about an inch in height. Transparent and yellow in color.

Grassy hops and pale malts scream hoppy pils to me in good fashion. Some lemony citrus comes into play.

Taste is of hop forward pils, bordering on pale ale to me.

Smooth, easy drinking, light to medium body, good carbonation.

My second offering from Alpine and yet again, the hype has not lived up to the taste for me. But I have not thrown in the towel yet, they have several others I want to try first.

Photo of jlb502
4/5  rDev +2.6%

Photo of TheRealDBCooper
4.5/5  rDev +15.4%

Photo of Trilogy31
4.68/5  rDev +20%
look: 5 | smell: 4.5 | taste: 4.5 | feel: 5 | overall: 5

Pours a bright light golden slightly darker than a typical bmc pilsner with a frothy finger of white foam. Nose has a very impressive array of bready and biscuity malts with a hint of yeast along with the slightest whiff of orange blossoms. The taste is what run bmc and other supposed imperial pilsners wish they could be. It is summed up as a really easy drinkable sessionable beer that is truly expertly made - it is simplistic perfection, bready malts, backed by a light bitterness and a slight hint that emerson and nelson are related with citrus and distant tropical fruits playing in the background. Oddly this beer had some floaties, but as udual i wish i had easy access to Alpine - this beer was perfection for a 6% pilsner.

Photo of regspeir
4.2/5  rDev +7.7%
look: 3.5 | smell: 4 | taste: 4.5 | feel: 4 | overall: 4

Aggressive pour into a pilsener glass revealed orange-lemon-colored brew with a a two-finger, white head which dissipated into a coating as it warmed. Nose was heavy with citrus, pine and earthy hops. Taste was a nice, light combination of citrus, toasted malts and mild spice with a refreshingly dry finish. I don't usually care much for pilseners, but this was VERY nice. I just wish Alpine distributed here because they just never seem to disappoint. Almost perfectly balanced, this is a winner.

Photo of KevinBrewer
4.35/5  rDev +11.5%
look: 4.5 | smell: 4 | taste: 4.5 | feel: 4 | overall: 4.5

A- Clear golden color with a tall white head that sticks around and clings to the sides of the glass.

N- Pretty bitter aroma at first with grapefruit rind and pine resin. Also some spice in there, and a hint of purple grapes. There is somewhat of a saison character to it. No malt in the nose.

T- There's an unexpected purple grape flavor that I assume is from the hops. Very vinous. The malt is very light and crisp, letting the hops command your attention. Bitter pine resin and grapefruit rind compliment the grape fruitiness while juicy citrus quenches the thirst. Fairly long fruity finish with bitter resins acting as hoppy time release capsules. Again, there is something saison-like about the finish. Light grain comes out a little in the aftertaste.

M- Light-bodied, moderate carbonation, with a crisp, semidry finish.

D- Overall, this is a sessionable dose of hops to the dome. The use of hops from New Zealand introduces some fresh flavors that any hophead will appreciate. To me, this is a cross between a light lager, an IPA, and a saison.

Photo of UMNbeerhunter
4.25/5  rDev +9%
look: 4.5 | smell: 3.5 | taste: 4.5 | feel: 4 | overall: 4.5

Poured into a Town Hall Brewery stemware glass.

Pours a clear golden straw color with tons of fluffy white head that dissipates leaving moderate lacing on the glass. I would have like to see a little more lacing on the glass but this beers appearance is right on for the style.

Smell is subdued but I am smelling some earthy and grass hops, maybe some citrus in the back. I would liked to have seen a stronger aroma profile but good none the less.

Taste is slightly malt heavy with a hop balance that just falls short. What can I say its a pils, perfectly balanced with a nice bitterness that goes all through the pallet. I would love to have more of this on hand to help my BMC buds to move toward craft.

Mouthfeel is medium in weight with some nice resin that sits with its pilsner bitterness on the pallet.

Overall this is one of the best pilsner’s I have ever had. Like most BA’s I am not a fan of the style because it doesn’t really have a characteristic that totally dominates the pallet (ie DIPA’S and RIS’s). What it is, is an awesome example of the style. Great summer beer and I wish I had more for the humid Minnesota months.

Photo of HipHop5
4.72/5  rDev +21%
look: 4.5 | smell: 4.5 | taste: 5 | feel: 4.5 | overall: 4.5

This is a revelation for me. I sure heard of well crafted pilsner and lager of all types. But this one is a slap in my hophead face.

Amazing color after a heavy poor into a pint glass. Golden tones with some light coppery shadows.
One finger head with no retention. Some great lacing and citrusy ,piney aromas right up front.
I suspect Nelson hops and some specialty wheat grain were used.
I can't be sure, and I love that! Really surprising brew.
Light to medium body. Hop bite join the aromas up front. Slightly sour and tangy in the middle. extra dry finish.
Thirst quencher for the big dudes:)
I wish I could find this easily in LA.

A MUST TRY!!!

Photo of Beernerdz
4/5  rDev +2.6%

Photo of dechaffinated
4.33/5  rDev +11%
look: 4 | smell: 4.5 | taste: 4.5 | feel: 4 | overall: 4

A - Golden hue with big pillowy white head that dissipated quickly. Very clear with tiny bubbles continuing throughout, as you would expect from a pilsner.

S - Light toast, pine, floral hops, grassy

T - When cold it was crisp, bitter, a bit grassy. As it warmed it opened up into mild grapefruit (mild compared to IPA), pine, toasted maltiness, mild spice in the mid palate, sweet & dry finish

M - Clean and crisp but definitely fuller and rounder than other pilsners I've had

O - I'm not a huge fan of pilsners in general, but it's important to note that Alpine calls this an Imperial Pilsner and I tried it because I like Alpine's other beers. I really enjoyed this beer and thought it was nicely balanced and fairly easy drinkability. I tend to drink a lot of hoppy beers, but this is a very nice & refreshing alternative to my usual as well as a great "summer beer".

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Emerson from Alpine Beer Company
87 out of 100 based on 47 ratings.