Duet - Alpine Beer Company

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DuetDuet

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BA SCORE
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world-class

559 Reviews
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Reviews: 559
Hads: 2,901
rAvg: 4.33
pDev: 7.62%
Wants: 883
Gots: 363 | FT: 15
Brewed by:
Alpine Beer Company visit their website
California, United States

Style | ABV
American IPA |  7.00% ABV

Availability: Rotating

Notes & Commercial Description:
Beer added by: SteveO1231 on 12-31-2005

A West Coast IPA that features Amarillo and Simcoe hops "in harmony," giving a light, floral aroma. Duet is nicely bitter with the perfect amount of malt concealed behind the hoppy goodness. Immensely drinkable, amazingly light on its feet.
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Reviews: 559 | Hads: 2,901
Photo of AgentZero
4.33/5  rDev 0%
look: 4.5 | smell: 4 | taste: 4.5 | feel: 4 | overall: 4.5

A - Golden yellow color, very clear, can see through it nicely. Big puffy head that left some nice lacing on the sides for a very good looking beer.

S - Pine and floral hope profile with a bit of citrus.

T - Nice grapefruit hits you up front but quickly fades with a moral floral and grassy flavor. Malty backbone shines through nicely, adding some sweetness.

M - Light and carbonated, smooth to drink.

D - Highly drinkable, could do this all day and enjoy it. (464 characters)

Photo of Gyle41386
4.64/5  rDev +7.2%
look: 4 | smell: 5 | taste: 4.5 | feel: 4 | overall: 5

Poured from a bomber into a mug. Thanks, mikesgroove!

Golden/orange color. Gentle pour yields a smallish white head. Nice rings of lacing on the glass.

This could possibly be my absolute favorite aroma. Bright citrus in the nose...grapefruit, orange, pineapple, tangerine...this beer even smells drinkable, if that's possible.

Flavor follows. Delicious, juicy citric hop flavor. Tons of great hop flavor without any kind of harsh bitterness. Just a really pleasant drinker, all the way through. There's a great touch of pine/resin in the finish. As soon as I put the glass down, I'm reaching for it again.

Lighter body than I expected. Appropriately carbonated. Slick, oily texture. Very refreshing IPA. One of the best I've had. Good call, Mike. (751 characters)

Photo of taylorhamrick
4.24/5  rDev -2.1%
look: 4 | smell: 5 | taste: 4 | feel: 4 | overall: 4

Obtained thanks to FreightTrain

IT pours a deep copper, almost amber, slightly dark ,but nice clarity, beautiful 1 inch head that's dense and sticky. Moderate lacing, decent retention. The smell is grapefruit, pine, and mango upfront. I think the simcoes dominate the smell. Notes of floral resins, and grassy, piney hops are nice, and the juicy fruit comes through as well. Also, as it warms, a nice distinct, raw graininess comes up as well. The taste is interesting. It starts out bitter, then the pine and grass come in, with a nice sweet finish, with the melon and orange notes coming in. As it warms, I think the Amarillo start to dominate the taste - with heavy orange and grass notes - flavors that I think are very prominent in the Amarillo hops. You start to taste the alcohol too, but mostly it just lends a nice pleasant burn to the drink. The malts also start to peek their head out as it warms, and you end up with this very bready, sweet, bitter orange peel kind of taste for the last leg of the drink. A good tasting IPA. I think that the taste of the alcohol is all to prominent in this though - perhaps if it were subdued, this could go to the next level. The body is nice and medium, fairly full with malt, with a good sticky resinous feeling. The carbonation is mild, and lends a slight sting. I would say overall, at about 45-50F, this beer is absolutely amazing, as the grassiness starts to subside, the grain starts to come forward a bit, and the fruity hop flavor dominates. A very nice beer that I really enjoyed drinking. (1,548 characters)

Photo of yourefragile
4.39/5  rDev +1.4%
look: 4 | smell: 5 | taste: 4.5 | feel: 3.5 | overall: 4

22 oz bottle poured into a tulip. Thanks womencantsail.

The beer is a clear bright golden glow with a thick slightly off white head supported by a steady stream of tiny bubbles of carbonation. Lots of thin streaks of lacing as well. The aroma is the highlight of this, exploding with sweet tropical and citrus fruits, particularly pineapple was my first thought. Flavor follows the nose with an initially sweet citric and tropic hop flavor but though out the body and into the finish the malt backbone and a slight graininess start to balance out the sweet. Mouthfeel is medium thick, with soft carbonation, resulting in a not particularly clean or crisp taste and finish. The finish almost tastes watery at times. Overall reminds me of Sculpin and has the aroma and flavor of an exceptional IPA, but the body leaves something to be desired for me. (850 characters)

Photo of yemenmocha
4.55/5  rDev +5.1%
look: 4.5 | smell: 5 | taste: 4.5 | feel: 4.25 | overall: 4.25

Amazing nose on this beer! Ripe tropical fruits with honey. Yum. Pours a honey golden to light amber, with generous white head. On the palate the hop focus is center stage, with no real need to mention malt presence. Nice piney and grapefruity hop flavors with a dry, chalky bitterness that goes nicely into the finish. Fine example of an IPA. (343 characters)

Photo of Joeynocturnum
4.72/5  rDev +9%
look: 4.5 | smell: 5 | taste: 4.5 | feel: 4.5 | overall: 5

LongBeach thanks for the hook up. First Alpine brew well worth the wait and lived up to the hype.

A- Poured one finger head, plus some amazing lacing that remained on the tulip start to finish.

S- Pine and Floral aroma filled my nose as soon as I popped the top, very strong and inviting.

T- Do not know how anyone could not like hops after drinking this beer.

M- Too Smooth, great carbonation.

D- I am debating cracking the Exponential Hopiness I have in the fridge. Good Stuff and I hope they make their way to Philly at some point. (542 characters)

Photo of PeprSprYoFace
4.75/5  rDev +9.7%
look: 4.5 | smell: 4.5 | taste: 5 | feel: 4 | overall: 5

So glad I live near San Diego where I can get Alpine brews.

Pours a perfect golden clear color with red hues. Very nice frothy head providing sticky lace all the way down.

Aroma is awesome. Not as aromatic as others but still awesome. Lots of citrus and pine.

Taste is awesome. One of the best IPA's out there. I taste some more Nelson hops like their Nelson IPA. But also some cascades and such. Very tasty

Mouthfeel is a little thicker than I think it should be but not much of a problem.

Overall an awesome beer that everyone should try. Trade for it if you have to. (574 characters)

Photo of ffejherb
4.42/5  rDev +2.1%
look: 4 | smell: 4.5 | taste: 4.5 | feel: 4 | overall: 4.5

Thanks to my SD Connection for procuring a bomber of this for me. Shared with FooFaa and brewslut on 3/29/10.

A - Gritty but well-carbonated golden amber-toned body with billowy two-finger rocky head that retained well, leaving thick swatches of foam around the glass. A pile of yeast chunks gathered at the bottom of the glass.

S - Intense grapefruit character with slight butterscotch notes up front, followed by a more dry, herbal flair in the middle through the backend. Finishes with a fairly spicy hop bite amid a toasted grainy malt character and sweet caramel notes.

T - Opens with a huge smack of grapefruit hops balanced by sweet caramel malt and lightly toasted grains. Finishes with a bold citrus hop bite and a slight hint of pine.

M - Medium bodied with an oily texture and moderate carbonation. Finish is pretty dry with an assertive hop bitterness on the palate.

D - Man, Alpine sure hits the nail on the head with IPA... Pure Hoppiness, Exponential Hoppiness, Nelson... and now this. Duet is a tasty West Coast hop bomb that maintains a nice balance of aggressive citrusy hops and sweet malts. (1,119 characters)

Photo of hckyfn9999
4.52/5  rDev +4.4%
look: 4 | smell: 4.5 | taste: 4.5 | feel: 4 | overall: 5

Pours a slightly hazy copper color with a foamy white head. Aroma is of grapefruit and grass mostly.

Flavor is full of citrus. There is tangerine and grapefruit. The hops are also floral. There is a light, bready sweetness hidden in the background. There is a nice bitterness here. This is a pretty light IPA in body but not flavor. Its incredibly easy drinking, especially at 7%, which is completely unnoticed. (412 characters)

Photo of hooliganlife
4.45/5  rDev +2.8%
look: 4.5 | smell: 4.5 | taste: 4.5 | feel: 4 | overall: 4.5

thanks to smokepot23

pours light copper and yellow, nice inch high fluffy white head. quite clear. great lacing.

huge amarillo here, tons of sweet citrus, pineapple, grapefruit, orange. no malts here son, this is hops, son.

again, tons of amarillo, huge grapefruit. lots of tangerine and pineapple kick in. a nice light grassy earthy flavor lingers in and out. light bitterness, very light malt presence. this is perfect.

nice and light, mild carbonation. goes down far too easy.

this is one of the best west coast IPA's i have had. nothing is overpowering, tons of complexity, but in such an easy way. alpine has always left me kind of, bleh, but this is just perfect, (674 characters)

Photo of PittBeerGirl
4.25/5  rDev -1.8%
look: 4.5 | smell: 4.5 | taste: 4 | feel: 4 | overall: 4.5

Huge thanks to scribe594 for hooking me up with this-had a small sample of 4 month old expo(at the gratitude release) that was awesome now I am super excited to try their IPA line-up. 22 oz bottle poured into a snifter.

A- Nearly transparent medium, shiny amber colored body. Pours an approximately 2 finger foamy white head-eventually fades to 1/2 finger and has perfect retention from there. Traces of lacing left all the way down the glass and bubbles steadily rising to the top. Beautiful.

S-Nose is dominated by big, juicy citrus hops-with a big oily bittersweet impression-like a pink grapefruit with sugar sprinkled on it. A hint of herbal malts and caramel malt can be detected as well.

T-Good but not as fantastic as the nose lets on. Up front is a blast of hoppy flavor consisting of citrus with herbal hop overtones and a moderate sweet malt backbone. Some herbal hop bitterness and a touch of pine come through for the finish-which is good but not as big as I expected. What lingers is a long lasting light to moderate citrus rind, pine, and herbal hop bitterness. The bitterness really isn't intense or cloying.

M- Light body with moderate carbonation. Not thin or watery but definitely is light on hop oils in the body.

D- The body is light and nearly quaffable without being thin, the smell is tremendous, and the taste is very good. My vote is that this is a very drinkable IPA. Its not a one-sided hoppy mess-but it showcases the hops very well with a minimal malt backbone. Not as aggressive as some other west coast IPAs I have had-but a very good IPA overall. Looking forward to trying other alpine brews. (1,631 characters)

Photo of jcnd9803
4.54/5  rDev +4.8%
look: 4 | smell: 5 | taste: 4.5 | feel: 4 | overall: 4.5

22oz from a trade. Thanks to mroberts1204 for recommending and supplying!

A- Perfect dark golden color with an awesome ivory colored head that just won't cease.

S- IMO, a perfect hop smell. Floral and grapefruit. Mild pale malt is there to add a touch of balance. The smell on this is awesome!

T- Amazingly, even though I smelled faint malt, it's absent from the taste. However, the hop profile comes across as balanced. Bitter, but not too bitter. Orange peel is what I'm getting.

M- Wow, I wasn't expecting this level of creaminess. This is a beautiful IPA.

D- Bottom line, I need to get more of this. I could drink this everyday! (641 characters)

Photo of maximum12
4.4/5  rDev +1.6%
look: 4 | smell: 4 | taste: 4.5 | feel: 4 | overall: 5

Thanks to Skuter for sending me both long-sought Alpine brews, Nelson & Duet, in a recent swap of fine beers. Split with the wife while the hops are still kicking vigorously.

Pours Gaskin Lake clear, golden, it's practically a sun unto itself, no sediment whatsoever. Carbonation is moderate to the eye. Smell is lovely hops, again in moderation, with a warm south wind from the Tropics.

The first sip of Duet brings out the extreme oiliness of the hops vs. a distinct taste impression, 99 out of 100 for slick, slippery, & sticky. Then comes the actual taste of the hops, again tropical, almost fruity edge on top, then comes the citrus, pine, & a bitterness at the end that's a pleasant cleaning up.

This is a creative gem. An IPA that starts out mellow with it's sandals off, then creeps up, & the bitterness at the end is a welcome cap to the flavors that come before it. This is what brewers can do with hops that doesn't involve 400 lbs. per barrel. The balance is beautiful. I can't even detect whateve malt is in here, but the hops aren't running wild. I could drink this all night & well into the morning. I'm gulping vs. sipping, which is what I do when I'm reviewing a beer that's both tasty & easy to down.

Excellent! If this one were readily available, I'd seek this out as a Furious alternative on days I wasn't feeling quite so aggressive. Lovely & a masterful creation. Great example of the style. (1,420 characters)

Photo of popery
4.74/5  rDev +9.5%
look: 4 | smell: 5 | taste: 5 | feel: 4 | overall: 4.5

Bottle, home. Holy crap, this is good. This beer pours a light golden amber with a nice white head that leaves good lacing. The aroma hit me the instant I uncapped the bottle. This is not a shy beer. It smells like a truckload of tangerine rinds and pine needles were mixed with fairy dust and dumped in a meadow of flowers. A big whiff of this beer is like aromatherapy for a hophead. As Ninkasi doubtlessly intended, this IPA is all about showcasing the hops. The flavor is light and dry with lots of hop bitterness, but there's just enough malt sweetness to keep it from paint thinner territory. The mouthfeel is oily with hop residue but just a bit thin. However, I think that I'm only noticing that because the hops are so big that my palate is assuming it's in DIPA territory. For a dry 7% abv beer, Alpine probably couldn't do any better in this regard. This is a phenomenal beer. I can't wait to try the rest of the Alpine bottles that I bought. (953 characters)

Photo of abrand
4.42/5  rDev +2.1%
look: 4 | smell: 4.5 | taste: 4.5 | feel: 4 | overall: 4.5

Credit to JesseTheHutt for this wonderful Cali IPA.

22 ounce bomber poured into a SN tumbler. The Duet pours a bright golden orange color with a bubbly white head and lots of bubbles rising from the base of the glass. Very good clarity through the pour and solid lacing. Aromas are dominated with floral and hoppy scents. Also hints of grapefruit and pines. Quaff is fairly sweet with plenty of citrus fruits. A nice malty caramel taste comes forth with the warming of the brew. And of course, hops finish off the flavor profile. Mouthfeel is crisp and bitter with a full body. Drinkability is great. Another great example of west coast hops. Thanks again Jesse. (664 characters)

Photo of pmccallum86
4.67/5  rDev +7.9%
look: 4 | smell: 4.5 | taste: 5 | feel: 4.5 | overall: 4.5

Pours a dark golden color with an amber hue. Head is very thick and bubbly leaving significant lacing as it dissipates down the glass.

Smell is amazing, great hoppy aromas, some pine, grapefruit and grassiness.

Taste is primarily of hops with a smooth creamy malt backbone. Big Hops. Grapefruit, pine, pear and banana come through. Very interesting flavor, somewhat similar to Alpine's Nelson but a little more hoppy. The malt is very present in the finish, very sweet almost caramel like.

Mouthfeel is smooth and crisp. Medium body with medium carbonation. Very nice.

Drinkability is superb, very drinkable IPA. (619 characters)

Photo of olympuszymurgus
3.67/5  rDev -15.2%
look: 4 | smell: 4.5 | taste: 3.5 | feel: 3.5 | overall: 3

on the visit to san diego, we drove out to alpine to sample the wares. except my partner in crime passed himself out in the back of the van. left alone to trudge on, i put forth my best effort. a light orangey hue, spewing forth grapefruit and mango goodness with a slight bit of malt. a nice bitter, touch of sweetness and plenty of citrus fruit. pretty tasty, nothing to go too wild over, but enjoyable nonetheless. perhaps the sours from earlier in the day were still vengeful, but i would think my excitement from the 45 minute drive would overcompensate for any of that. at any rate, i shall try a bottle in the future or perhaps find it at sd beer week if everything goes right. (684 characters)

Photo of orbitalr0x
4.23/5  rDev -2.3%
look: 4.5 | smell: 4 | taste: 4 | feel: 4 | overall: 5

Fresh bomber pours into my glass a wonderful peach color with amazing clarity and a half inch of creamy white head that leaves some spotty lacing. Enticing. Aroma is all hops! Tropical fruit, grapefruit, green hop resins, floral accents and a bit of spiciness. Really shows off the Simcoe and Amarillo. Mellow caramel sweetness in the background.

First sip brings all hops upfront. Citric, tropical, herbaceous with green leafy resins. A bit floral with a mellow underlying sweetness from crisp light malts. Flows down with a bitter kick and lingering hops on the finish.

Mouthfeel is smooth with fast moving carbonation making this brew immensely drinkable. This is just a damn good IPA that I would be buying many bombers of if it was available locally. If you have access to this consider yourself lucky! (810 characters)

Photo of WYVYRN527
4.18/5  rDev -3.5%
look: 4.5 | smell: 4 | taste: 4 | feel: 4.5 | overall: 4.5

Thanks to javib458 for sending this in a trade. Poured into my RR tulip glass from a 22 oz. bottle.

A: Pours a deep golden-amber hue with a two-finger thick off-white head that takes eons to settle. The head is frothy, and has the consistency of that of a Trippel. Head retention is awesome, and lacing is at it's peak.

S: The aroma screams West Coast. Citrusy, with hints of mango and pineapple, along with grassy, floral notes. Bready malt and a hint of caramel are present in the backround.

T: A bit more balanced than the smell. All of the fruity and floral hop aromas are there. Citrus, a bit of pine, and other tropical flavors are balanced out with a good amount of caramel, dough, and some honey-like flavors. Finish is dry and very clean.

M: For a standard American IPA, this beer has the viscosity and texture of a Double. It's silky, yet vigorous mouthfeel lend this beer something I have not had in many beers of the same style.

D: Smooth, yet chewy at the same time, This beer is a beast of it's own kind. I find it to be very balanced, big in flavor, yet at a point where it can be easily enjoyed in numbers. I have got to find more of this. (1,161 characters)

Photo of joepais
4.34/5  rDev +0.2%
look: 4 | smell: 5 | taste: 4 | feel: 4 | overall: 4.5

Big thanks to errantnight for hooking me up with this. Bottle spit among friends produced a big fluffy white head that laces out great. The body of the brew was a cloudy golden yellow in color.

The aroma was great I liked how you could smell the Amarillo hops over the Simcoe which to me was a great accomplishment. This brew had a really great hop nose to it. The flavors were nice, not to one dimensional as one would expect from a west coast IPA, but somewhat more balanced than I was expecting. It was light and crisp in the mouth and drank extremely well.

Hint ..I would gladly drink this one again (606 characters)

Photo of MikeBuff
4.15/5  rDev -4.2%
look: 4.5 | smell: 4.5 | taste: 4 | feel: 3 | overall: 4.5

22oz bottle served into a pint glass.

A- really no head to speak of probably because it was poured a little too cold. Some good lacing on the top, beer has a nice golden color.

S- Fairly mild on the nose, again probably because of the tempature. The hop aromma shines through in the best sort of way. Not over powering but just enough to invite you for more.

T- Its a very citrus but calms down quicky. It imparts a little spice right before the hit of malt comes through. At 45 ibu's this is really enjoyable my tounge is not torched and I could have a few of these.

M- I would like just a tad more on the mouth feel but it works well with the hoppiness of this beer.

Overall, ive become a huge fan of alpine, any time someone goes anywhere where they can grab some for my I toss them some money and say grab whatever they have. (838 characters)

Photo of cbros
4.47/5  rDev +3.2%
look: 4 | smell: 4.5 | taste: 4.5 | feel: 4.5 | overall: 4.5

A 22 ounce bomber poured into a mug.

A- Pours a medium to light yellow color. There is a nice head retention with a pretty white three finger head. There is also a lot of carbonation activity after the pour. Overall a decent looking beer.

S- The smell coming from this beer is your run of the mill hoppy West Coast IPA. I am picking up a strong citrusy presence and little else. This a good smelling beer.

T- As with the other Alpine beer I have had the taste is where the beer really sets itself apart. This beer starts off relatively mild then finishes with a nice hoppy character. It isn't overpowering in anyway, rather it is a nice well balanced IPA that isn't too bitter but still has a nice hoppy flavor. A very good tasting beer that I would love to drink in numerous quantities.

I recieved this beer as part of my Secret Santa haul and I am very happy to finally mark this Want off my list. Like I stated above this is a very good tasting beer and I would love having this again. Thanks Matt! (1,007 characters)

Photo of corby112
3.74/5  rDev -13.6%
look: 3.5 | smell: 4.5 | taste: 3.5 | feel: 3.5 | overall: 3.5

22oz. bottle received in a recent trade, courtesy of WeeObese.

Pours a clear pale golden yellow color with lots of visible carbonation bubbling up and a frothy 1.5 finger white head that as decent retention, slowly fading into a thin lasting cap.

Sweet citrus hop aroma that is slightly earthy with a faint grahamcrakery malt presence. Hints of grapefruit, orange peel, mango and pineapple accompany the dank oily resinous hop presence. Slightly piny giving it a touch of earthiness and a subtle malt backbone with hints of biscuit and graham cracker. There's also a sweet alcohol presence in the nose.

Slightly chewy, resinous medium body with a lot of dry earthy hop bitterness up front along with some tropical and citrus fruit flavor all slightly balanced by a subtle malt backbone.
Very earthy up front with a lot of dry pine bitterness which lingers throughout into a very dry finish. The citrus character from the aroma is there but very less prominent than I expected or hoped for. Hints of lemon peel and grapefruit along with some pineapple notes. Subtle malt backbone with hints of graham cracker and biscuit. There's also some strong sweet alcohol evident mid palate and the high ABv is not very well masked. Overall this beer is a bit to dry and bitter for my liking with too strong of an alcohol presence and not enough balance. The balance that I speak of is not a lack of malt, just a lack of the flavors blending with each other. Not nearly enough citrus, sweet flavor for my taste. Decent but a bit overhyped. (1,530 characters)

Photo of CrellMoset
4.23/5  rDev -2.3%
look: 4.5 | smell: 4 | taste: 4.5 | feel: 4 | overall: 4

22 oz. bottle from Beverages 4 Less, poured in to a cervoise.

Appearance: I'm reviewing this one on the heels of the delicious Nelson, and though I could pretty much just copy/paste my description of its appearance here, I won't. To recap: the color is a little lighter than I anticipated, a crystalline auriferous tangerine, replete with large, mercurial bubbles, racing towards one finger of pearly ivory head with great retention and crisp, chunky lacing. To be fair, there are differences: the shade of this one is a little darker than Nelson (a plus), the carbonation a little less excited and, subsequently, the head a little less massive (+), though the lacing is also a little less rocky, perhaps a result of the protein content of the constituent hops (-). Nonetheless, quite an auspicious beginning, particularly as the drink begins and those gorgeous aging rings of hop protein residue begin to form. Glorious.

Aroma: Duet's nose is a little tamer than Nelson's, which is saying something given the latter's understated and subtle complexity. Citrus is fairly large and predominant, very tart and juicy, and more at the top end of the spectrum - that is, lemon and orange. There's some dry, almost festively aromatic pine - like a big ol' dried Frasier fir -

Taste: Duet's dare I say risky choice of pairing Amarillo with Simcoe produces most of its interesting results here. These two are rarely featured on their own or even predominantly in IPAs - indeed, I remember the novelty of Weyerbacher's Double Simcoe and its self-touted experimental nature when it first came out - so this is quite a treat. I've also likened the notes one can achieve from Amarillo as the closest thing you can get to dry hopping without actually dry hopping, and this beer is no different: the Amarillo addition provides a nice earthy, grassy, leafy kick, slightly piney, amplifying these elements of the Simcoe (in which they're also present but feature less prominently). The Simcoe hop has always come across as sort of a C-hop conglomeration on steroids to me, hitting about every note you could want or need out of hops, though always a little inauthentically, in my mind - pine, citrus, herbal notes, floral overtones, and leafy and grassy bits and pieces all wrapped up in a minty, bubblegum package. Its upon consideration of the Simcoe addition that the apropos nature of the name of this beer becomes evident. The Simcoe both augments the Amarillo's woody, herbal, and grassy nature and also backs it up where it lacks, providing pure, zesty lemon notes, thick ruby red grapefruit, spicy, cleansing mint, thyme, basil, juniper berries, and a moderately amped up level of bitterness. All this over a biscuity, slightly caramelized, moderately sweet backbone. Duet is tasty.

Mouthfeel: A body approximately on par with Nelson - that is, of a moderate thickness - but with more residual sugars than Nelson by far, to make for a slightly stickier mouth. The carbonation is still large, rampant, crisp, but the sugars tame the impact, making this one creamy, smooth, and even rather than sharp or crisp, a contribution that probably works well with the hop profile here (with a heavier emphasis on citrus and a downplaying of spicy herbal notes).

Drinkability: A different beast entirely than Nelson, though truly another beautiful showcase for some beautiful hops. On the minus side, I've never really been a huge fan of the Simcoe hop, even though I think it's better done here than it usually is - I've always found it a little inauthentic, I might even use the word "gimmicky," as if it's been specially engineered or bred to provide everything one might want in a hop but just comes across as trying too hard. The notes are also a little less familiar than the Nelson Sauvin notes, and thus there's a little less of a "wow" effect as I drink. On the plus side, however, the manner in which this pairing is accomplished is marvelous - the way in which they play off one another, playing off each others' strengths, helping make up for each others' weaknesses (or, more appropriately, gaps) - and very well done.

Alpine knows their hops, and they let this knowledge shine through - none of their IPAs are too bitter, they're more often dry than not, and they don't need to be too alcoholic to accomplish their goal. This is a sign of confidence, and that confidence is well earned. (4,391 characters)

Photo of afausser
4.3/5  rDev -0.7%
look: 4 | smell: 4 | taste: 4.5 | feel: 5 | overall: 4

Appearance: Pours a hazy and golden peach and orange blend with about a finger of crisp snow white semi-persistent head. The carbonation bubbles are medium sized but bountiful and quickly flow up in many streams to the top of the glass. A sheet of fine lacing, made up of medium size bubbles, is persistently sticking to the side of the glass and shows no sign of movement. Consistent, pretty, and nice.

Smell: The smell is of floral hops, with fruity sweetness as well as a bit of slight spice and honey mixed in. there are some fruit notes in the background as well--banana and juicy oranges in particular stand out to me, which actually blends very nicely with the clove spice. Pine notes are big in the nose of this one, too. As it warms, tropical fruits become increasingly present in the nose. The banana is still there, but I also get a very strong passion fruit out of it.

Taste: The taste on this one is hugely complex. Citrus (lemon and orange peels) and pine hops are probably the most dominant notes, but there are so many others that run just underneath the surface. Juicy oranges are present again (I know I mentioned citrus already but I feel that this merits a second mention just for the amount of JUICE that is in the taste of this, as opposed to the drier, more rind-like taste that comes across more dominantly in the hop notes) as are the bananas and passion fruit carrying over from the nose. I say that there's heavy citrus in this one, and while that's true, I should make it clear that it's the lighter side of the spectrum of citrus--there's not really any hint of a grapefruit bitterness, which is interesting considering the amount of piney hops present (I've found that the two usually go hand in hand somewhat). There's even a slight malty note mixed into the taste on this one. Also present are herbs--particularly thyme and a bit of peppermint.

Mouthfeel: Crisp, delicious, light bodied, and near perfect. The carbonation bubbles are tiny, and move in such a way to convey a slight spiciness, moving the complexities of the taste to the palate, getting their job done, and disappearing. The aftertaste comes across, at times, as if its barely there, and at other times tastes of heavy pine--this is wonderfully done.

Drinkability: Quite drinkable indeed--it's not as light as the nelson (which I just finished reviewing prior to this one) but it's wonderfully complex, which makes it a very interesting brew to drink. Combined with the wonderful mouthfeel, I find myself looking forward to each sip--though they are sips rather than gulps. Pairs quite nicely with some extra sharp cheddar. (2,626 characters)

Duet from Alpine Beer Company
96 out of 100 based on 559 ratings.