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Nelson - Alpine Beer Company

Not Rated.
NelsonNelson

Displayed for educational use only; do not reuse.
BA SCORE
99
world-class

2,271 Ratings
THE BROS
-
no score

(send 'em beer!)
Ratings: 2,271
Reviews: 570
rAvg: 4.47
pDev: 8.95%
Wants: 1,237
Gots: 226 | FT: 16
Brewed by:
Alpine Beer Company visit their website
California, United States

Style | ABV
American IPA |  7.10% ABV

Availability: Rotating

Notes/Commercial Description:
A Golden Rye IPA - An outstanding hop from New Zealand, Nelson Sauvin, is generously used throughout the brewing and dry-hopping of this unique beer. European rye is added for a smooth, malty addition to flavor. 1.065 OG 7% AB

(Beer added by: rayjay on 08-14-2006)
Beer: Ratings & Reviews
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Ratings: 2,271 | Reviews: 570 | Display Reviews Only:
Reviews by sweetbrew82:
Photo of sweetbrew82
4.18/5  rDev -6.5%
look: 4.5 | smell: 5 | taste: 4 | feel: 3.5 | overall: 4

22 oz. into a snifter

P: Brilliant gold with a pearly white head of thick, tightly-packed foam that showed excellent retention. Once it finally evaporated, it formed a thin film of foam on top and left some spotty lacing behind.

A: Wow! Hops just rip open the nasal passages with a fresh and vibrant citrusy goodness that smells like there's a freshly-cut piece of grapefruit in my glass. As it warms, more of a tropical fruit presence comes out that turns up the dial even more on the pleasure factor. Next in line is a bit of floral and pine to deepen the complexity. While the sweetness of the malt is hardly even noticeable, the spiciness of the rye is, even if it is decidedly more subtle than I'd like. This is in the elite class of IPA's as far as I'm concerned!

T: Citric blasts of primarily grapefruit, along with tangerines and pineapples are the initial sensations my palate is greeted with, as the biscuity malt underneath is used as a springboard for the hops. Some spruce-like, oily pine gets in the mix after the initial wave, while some more tropical fruit deepens the profile and broadens the complexity. The rye doesn't add the brilliant amount of spiciness that Hop Rod Rye does, but at least it's flavor isn't as subtle as it was in the nose and does tingle the tongue a bit on the back end. Oily, slightly grassy, and impressively bitter on the moderately dry finish. In my opinion, the flavor doesn't come close to matching the magnificence of the aroma, but it's pretty good nonetheless.

M: Alpine's Nelson Rye is a medium-light bodied beer that offers some stickiness to coat the mouth with. But, it feels a bit thin and watery in spots and doesn't offer any creaminess due to the relatively low amount of C02.

Notes: I have a feeling that this bottle isn't doing the beer justice when compared to the draught version. It seems like the flavor might be able to match the nose, and the amount of carbonation would be improved to give it that slightly creamy feel that I love in my IPA's. Seeing as how Alpine just starting bottling these beers, I wonder if they are still fine-tuning the bottling line because the carbonation seemed a bit off. This doesn't replace Hop Rod Rye as my favorite rye beer, but it will become a staple in my beer diet, for sure. Quite nice!

sweetbrew82, Oct 17, 2009
More User Reviews:
Photo of RoyalT
4/5  rDev -10.5%
look: 4 | smell: 4 | taste: 4 | feel: 4 | overall: 4

Appearance - This is actually brown in color which suggests a monster malt base to this AIPA. The head is huge and yeasty with great retention and left some wonderful lacing.

Smell - The heavy hop aroma is huge here. I can't recall ever having the namesake Nelson Sauvin hops but they remind me of big PacNW hops. The malt here though is also big and provides a strong balance. It is not overly sweet but full of caramel.

Taste - The big hops and malt come out exactly the same at the taste. This beer is perfectly balanced with monster, PacNW style pine and herbal hops and big unsweetened caramel malts.

Mouthfeel - This is a solid medium-bodied with a good bitter bite throughout.

Drinkability - This is a big beer that begs to be sipped. It goes down well enough but will be too big for the casual drinker. It feels like a DIPA in every way except in ABV.

RoyalT, Oct 04, 2010
Photo of tectactoe
4.7/5  rDev +5.1%
look: 4 | smell: 4.75 | taste: 5 | feel: 4 | overall: 4.5

Huge thanks to Mike for splitting this with me - one that I've been dying to try. Nelson pours a murky golden and somewhat orange-ish color. Super hazy and amazingly unfiltered, it looks something like lighter-toned apple cider. Surprisingly little head for an IPA, and it looks a bit thick during the pour, but the yeasty haze is strangely compelling.

Alpine Nelson smells like the West Coast; wall-to-wall tropical fruits that immediately pummel your nostrils as the beer nears your face. Pineapple, mango, and a very large helping of oranges and/or tangerines. It almost has a "juice" vibe too it, and even begins to draw some similarities to Pliny the Elder.

The Nelson hops have a very nice, bursting wet and weedy aroma to them. Fresh, vibrant, and bright, exploding with savory leafiness and a mild twinge of bitterness alongside their wonderful tropical fruit inclusions. Not much malt (or rye, for that matter) in the aroma. This one is clearly all about the hops.

The flavor is just as "West Coast" as the aroma; again, just bursting through with a wonderful fruit profile. More pineapples and a gushing display of tangerines. The leafy side of the hops are more amplified on the palate, coming to life with a nice pungency; weedy, wet, grassy, with a beautiful sustaining bitterness.

Some slight onion-y flavors get tossed about; typically not a flavor I'm fond of in my beer, but it's light enough here to provide another layer of complexity rather than get in the way or distract. I finally get some rye in the finish, adding a nice dryness and the lightest touch of spice in the finale. Not as heavy on the palate as it appeared; slick, oily, and lightly carbonated.

Wow, this stuff went down like nothing. It was like drinking juice with some hops mixed in. Beautiful display of the Nelson hop and what it's capable of. Huge tropical fruit aromas and flavors make this sucker incredibly easy to drink. This is something you could crush just drinking outside on a hot day. Another staple in the already larger-than-life portfolio of West Coast IPAs.

tectactoe, Jun 27, 2013
Photo of LindaLaneIPA
5/5  rDev +11.9%

LindaLaneIPA, Jun 16, 2014
Photo of Schlais
4.5/5  rDev +0.7%

Schlais, Jan 24, 2012
Photo of Dabeel
4.5/5  rDev +0.7%

Dabeel, Jun 05, 2013
Photo of SanFranJake
4.5/5  rDev +0.7%

SanFranJake, Jul 31, 2014
Photo of surfwahine
5/5  rDev +11.9%

surfwahine, Aug 07, 2014
Photo of SkiBum22
4.4/5  rDev -1.6%
look: 4.5 | smell: 4.5 | taste: 4.5 | feel: 4.5 | overall: 4

A - Pours almost a golden orange. Slight haze to it. Thin white head.

S - Juicy, citrus hop bitterness, hints of pineapple and grapefruit rind. There is some spice from the rye as well.

T - Tropical fruits upfront with a hint of spice, rye and bready malts follow. Very unique flavors here, unlike any other IPA I've tasted to date.

M - Not quite a medium body. Lower carbonation.

O - This is the most unique IPA I've ever had. Really like the white wine characteristics from the Nelson Sauvin hops. Another solid IPA from ABC.

SkiBum22, Feb 05, 2012
Photo of Anstuart5
4.25/5  rDev -4.9%

Anstuart5, Aug 09, 2014
Photo of BubalooBrewMaster
4.5/5  rDev +0.7%

BubalooBrewMaster, Jun 29, 2014
Photo of jose_alehouseSD
5/5  rDev +11.9%

jose_alehouseSD, Aug 29, 2014
Photo of Ben7773
4.5/5  rDev +0.7%

Ben7773, Jul 11, 2014
Photo of newk340
4.63/5  rDev +3.6%
look: 4.5 | smell: 4 | taste: 5 | feel: 4.5 | overall: 4.5

split bomber with hu5om (who received it in a trade) in new belgium goblets.

A: bronze amber in color with a light fluffy head that quickly dissipates and leaves phenomenal lacing.

S: very front heavy with white grapes, smelling similar to a white zinfidel wine, but with additional citrusy (grapefruit?) hops.

T: a BLAST of flavor, white wine extremely evident with continuous overshadowing of rye. leaves a very yeasty aftertaste.

MF/D: very smooth, carbonation evident but not overwhelming. flavors coat the mouth and throat leaving a champagne/beer feeling following each sip.

newk340, Jul 21, 2010
Photo of orbitalr0x
4.58/5  rDev +2.5%
look: 4 | smell: 4.5 | taste: 4.5 | feel: 4.5 | overall: 5

Bomber pours into my glass a deep orange/yellow with a two finger creamy, bubbling white head and superb clarity. Aromas start with a distinct tropical, pungent, fruity hop explosion. Grapefruit melds in with a nice spicy rye character. There is somewhat of a vinous, white wine character lurking within as well. Quite the lovely aroma.

First sip brings a plethora of fruity, resinous, pungent hops upfront with bold mango and grapefruit flavors. Spicy rye mixes in beautifully. Flows down with a good kick of bitterness that's well placed. Lingering fruity hops on the palate. Delicious!

Mouthfeel is crisp and smooth with perfect carbonation. This one is exceedingly easy to drink and just amazingly enjoyable. A top notch IPA and I love the addition of rye and the Nelson Sauvin hops. Seek it out if you have the ability!

orbitalr0x, Mar 05, 2010
Photo of briang01
4.25/5  rDev -4.9%

briang01, Aug 09, 2014
Photo of Alodnar
4.75/5  rDev +6.3%

Alodnar, Oct 03, 2014
Photo of supa0525
4.75/5  rDev +6.3%

supa0525, Jul 14, 2013
Photo of Mr_mjr
5/5  rDev +11.9%

Mr_mjr, Aug 09, 2014
Photo of joel66
4/5  rDev -10.5%

joel66, Mar 17, 2013
Photo of gregmoscetti
5/5  rDev +11.9%

gregmoscetti, Apr 17, 2012
Photo of NWer
4.25/5  rDev -4.9%

NWer, Jan 19, 2014
Photo of Sam_Gladieux
4.25/5  rDev -4.9%

Sam_Gladieux, May 23, 2014
Photo of Hamburgers
4.4/5  rDev -1.6%
look: 4 | smell: 4.5 | taste: 4.5 | feel: 4.25 | overall: 4.25

Fresh bottle, only 5 days old. At least that's what Alpine said when I bought it. Pours a cloudy pale gold with one finger white head. Aroma is super grassy, slightly piney with notes of citrus fruit. Flavors of citrus with just a hint of spicy rye. Medium body with ample carbonation. Crisp, clean finish. A smooth IPA, not too bitter.

Hamburgers, Feb 10, 2013
Photo of warnerry
4.43/5  rDev -0.9%
look: 4 | smell: 4.5 | taste: 4.5 | feel: 4 | overall: 4.5

On tap at Alpine. Had right after Keane Idea.

A - Hazy orange with half a finger if head. Pretty nice lacing left behind.

S - Like Keane Idea, lots of citrus with some mango and dank hops.

T - A bit less sweet than KI, with hops really front and center. Lots of citrus and mango. Very tasty. Nice bitter finish. Very tasty.

M - Medium mouthfeel with a nice bitterness. Alcohol not apparent.

O - Not sure how to compare this with Keane Idea. I think Nelson has less noticeable alcohol, though the abv isn't all that different between the two. Can't really go wrong with either, and Nelson is a beer I would love to have available year-round.

warnerry, Dec 16, 2012
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Nelson from Alpine Beer Company
99 out of 100 based on 2,271 ratings.