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Nelson - Alpine Beer Company

NelsonNelson

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BA SCORE
99
world-class

1,685 Ratings
THE BROS
-
no score

(send 'em beer!)
Ratings: 1685
Reviews: 536
rAvg: 4.45
pDev: 8.99%


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)
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Ratings: 1,685 | Reviews: 536 | Show All Ratings:
Photo of FlyingBull
FlyingBull

California

4.06/5  rDev -8.8%
look: 4.25 | smell: 4.25 | taste: 4 | feel: 4 | overall: 4

Had this beer on tap at Alpine. I really enjoy going there. Not fancy - just down to earth with good people, food, and beer.

The pour was totally filled the glass leaving only a skim of white foam on top. No problem though - I appreciate the full pour. The beer was a clear gold/yellow color showing lively carbonation. The aroma was very citrus to me - grapefruit and orange, backed up by some fruitiness. I could also pick up nice pale malt. The taste was a nice balanced Nelson hop flavor with pale malt. The mouth feel was medium body with nice lively carbonation.

This beer is a very good example of a beer with Nelson S. hops. I generally am not a big fan of that hop but I fully enjoyed this brew.

Serving type: on-tap

10-25-2013 23:52:03 | More by FlyingBull
Photo of phingdong
phingdong

New Hampshire

4.05/5  rDev -9%
look: 4 | smell: 4 | taste: 4 | feel: 4.5 | overall: 4

Thanks to Sebowski for the bottle.

Pours a clear golden hue with a nice sticky white 2 finger head. Leaves nice sticky lacing as it recedes.

Familiar tropical hop aroma with some pine and some funk in there as well. Smell of rye also comes through.

Nice thick and creamy mouthfeel that coats the entire palate. Taste mirrors the smell. Nice tropical hoppy fruit with a dank funk coming through nicely in the background. Very tasty beer. Maybe just a touch muted in aroma/taste compared to the best in this class.

My first beer from Alpine. I look forward to trying the rest of their lineup.

Serving type: bottle

05-04-2011 23:35:15 | More by phingdong
Photo of tewaris
tewaris

Minnesota

4.05/5  rDev -9%
look: 5 | smell: 4 | taste: 4 | feel: 4 | overall: 4

45 IBUs
OG 1.065
22 oz. with no dates into a Bell's tulip. Thanks BulbMan!

Lighter and brighter looking than I expected, Nelson poured without any "redness" I typically, and erroneously, associate with rye beers. A clear hay golden hue, with a beautiful cream white head; excellent retention and lacing. Tropical fruit (esp. pineapple) is jumping out as I pour and I know that this is going to be a hoppy delight even before a sip. However, strong notes of sourdough bread make it clear that it's more than your regular IPA. Off to taste!

Fruity, spicy, mellow and bitter --- almost a contradiction, but very successful. And firmly bitter, no joke! Like other Alpine IPA's (have had Pure & Exponential till now), but with a twist. Creamier but still plenty crisp, Nelson smells and tastes of awesomeness. Eventually, rye seems to dominate this beer and not in an unpleasant manner. The mouthfeel is creamier, but still a little thin. Overall though, Nelson delivers exactly what it promises and is a major success!

Scores: Appearance 5/5; Aroma 4/5; Taste 4/5; Mouthfeel 4/5; Overall 4/5

Serving type: bottle

06-13-2011 08:19:43 | More by tewaris
Photo of ptykozoon
ptykozoon

California

4.05/5  rDev -9%
look: 4 | smell: 4.5 | taste: 4 | feel: 4.5 | overall: 3.5

Great foamage/lacing. Light yellow.

Outstanding smell, peaches, bitter light hops.

PEACHES, orange, bread, hops are mellow and smooth.

Mouthfeel is incredibly smooth. Never had an IPA like this. Light carbonation. Bitter/dry.

Great little IPA, taste is very fruit forward. My first beer from Alpine, I can see why they're so highly regarded.

Serving type: bottle

07-22-2011 03:48:45 | More by ptykozoon
Photo of Brez07
Brez07

Maine

4.05/5  rDev -9%
look: 4 | smell: 4.5 | taste: 4 | feel: 3.5 | overall: 4

22oz bottle split with Drazzamatazz and Heater

A: Slightly cloudy brownish orange. 1 finger fluffy white head upon initial pour. Decent lined lacing

S: Grapefruit. Pure, unadulterated grapefruit. A little bit of bready rye comes out as well. After allowing it to open, the grapefruit begins to fade and you get more rye

T: Grapefruit, but not as prevalent as the nose. Other citrus flavors, including orange and mango. Weird, but it almost tastes a little watered down. Just a little bit of hop bitterness

M: Medium bodied. Lighter carbonation, so overall a smooth beer. Light pine bitter aftertaste

D: When first cracked open, it smelled amazing. While it didn't live up to my lofty initial expectations, it was definitely a solid IPA. I would drink this beer often if it was available in my area

Serving type: bottle

09-18-2011 22:20:26 | More by Brez07
Photo of ghostwalker
ghostwalker

Massachusetts

4.05/5  rDev -9%
look: 4 | smell: 4.5 | taste: 4 | feel: 3.5 | overall: 4

Hazy golden body with a huge froth monster of a head. Almost looks like a hefe.

Nose is spicy-sharp citrus. There's an almost vegetal spiciness contribution from the rye. Love it!

Flavor is a study in contrasts. Smooth up front, sharp on the finish. Light on the palate, but with solid rye and hops all over. Not quite as hoppy as I expected, but really a tasty brew.

Mouthfeel is light and highly carbonated. For impact on the palate, this drinks more like a blonde than an IPA.

Hard to believe this is 7.1% It's almost quaffable. Really a good brew.

My first from Alpine. Duet is in the fridge and Exponential Hoppiness is on the way! Thanks to nogidrew63 for the trade on this one.

Serving type: bottle

02-09-2012 01:41:44 | More by ghostwalker
Photo of mcintire78
mcintire78

Massachusetts

4.05/5  rDev -9%
look: 4.5 | smell: 4.5 | taste: 3.5 | feel: 4.5 | overall: 4.5

a: Pale gold to straw in color with a large, two finger head, but only a small bit of carbonation. Head dissipates very slowly leaving significant lacing.

s: Strong smell of citrus up front, followed by an almost flowery hop smell. Was expecting more rye, but the citrus is overpowering.

t: A very gentle start up, that ends strong with rye. All in all, a very mellow beer.

m: Gentle is the only word for it. Very light carbonation and a lack of bittering hops makes for very easy drinking.

d: High drinkability, much higher than I would have thought from a West Coast IPA. You could down these one after another.

Serving type: bottle

09-03-2012 00:09:00 | More by mcintire78
Photo of IKR
IKR

California

4.05/5  rDev -9%
look: 4 | smell: 4 | taste: 4 | feel: 4.5 | overall: 4

Appearance: Light Amber color with a modest-sized white head that faded fairly quickly.

Smell: Primarily Piney hop aromas with some citrus fruits thrown in..

Taste:The pine aromas carry over to the taste, but I also get some grape-like and citrus notes. The rye adds a bit of spicy notes. I can't really pick up the malts in the taste. The finish ends with the grape notes, a bit of rye spiciness and mild citrus notes.

Mouth-feel: Medium body with a medium level of carbonation.

Overall: IPAs aren't really my thing but this is a good beer.

Serving type: bottle

09-16-2012 23:44:27 | More by IKR
Photo of elgiacomo
elgiacomo

Georgia

4.05/5  rDev -9%
look: 4 | smell: 4.5 | taste: 4 | feel: 3.5 | overall: 4

22oz bottle, unknown date. Served at around 45F.

Pours clear gold with a one finger white head that leaves some nice spotty lacing and holds a small cap with large bubbles.

Aroma is fruity hops, white grapes, melon (cantaloupe), some resin, onion and weed, a little pine and citrus, some caramel malt. Very good strength.

Flavor follows with resinous hops, white grapes, cantaloupe, fruity hops, decent caramel malt backbone with the rye lending a hint of spice on the finish. Some sweetness, moderate bitterness. Some alcohol on the finish as well.

Mouthfeel is medium-plus bodied, sticky and oily with good carbonation.

A very unique IPA. Those Nelson Sauvin hops are something else. Very good, but to be honest not as mind-blowing as I was expecting coming in. The aroma is definitely the strong suit, excellent.

Serving type: bottle

11-08-2012 00:43:11 | More by elgiacomo
Photo of pmccallum86
pmccallum86

Minnesota

4.03/5  rDev -9.4%
look: 4.5 | smell: 4.5 | taste: 4 | feel: 4 | overall: 3.5

Pours a golden hazy straw color with a thick bubbly head that dissipates quickly leaving a medium amount of lacing along the glass, pretty solid in appearance.

Smell is very strange, but in a great way. Some kind of weird fruit aroma, almost like an orange dreamsickle, I cannot wait to try this. Very fruity floral aroma, like no other IPA I have ever smelled.

Wow, this beer is different. It tastes a little like an orange dreamsickle. Very citrus, almost like a clementine with some cream as well. Light malt backbone comes through as well, maybe a little to sweet. Very unique IPA, you can taste the rye in the finish, I like it.

Mouthfeel is smooth and creamy, medium body with light carbonation.

Very interesting beer, drinkability does suffer from the sweetness though.

Serving type: bottle

03-06-2010 03:05:08 | More by pmccallum86
Photo of smarcoly
smarcoly

California

4.03/5  rDev -9.4%
look: 3.5 | smell: 4.5 | taste: 4 | feel: 3.5 | overall: 4

Poured into a DFH tulip glass with a smallish head. Nice yellowish-orange color which reminds me of a hefe.

I was extremely pleased with the aroma. I love the aroma of a hoppy IPA, but this one was different. More fruity (pineapple, grapefruit, citrus) than piney or floral. Does not have a signature IPA aroma.

Taste is a lot different than I expected from an IPA, but in a good way. Very mild on the hops which makes it easily drinkable for those who dont prefer hoppy bitter beer. If you are doing an IPA tasting with some buddies this is a great one to mix in as it adds a different tasting experience to a flight.

Mouthfeel was decent with mild to medium carbonation.

Serving type: bottle

01-07-2011 15:07:53 | More by smarcoly
Photo of jsanford
jsanford

Georgia

4.03/5  rDev -9.4%
look: 4.5 | smell: 4 | taste: 4 | feel: 4 | overall: 4

On-tap at Downtown Johnny Browns in San Diego. Poured into a Pint Glass.

A - Poured a clear orange with a fluffy white head that recedes to a nice haze and thick ring.
S - Incredibly pungent hop aromas that basically smells like the dankest weed you've ever had (sorry, it's all that comes to mind, and I don't even smoke). Quite vegetal, green, and slightly "catty". Very unique aromas, but I'm loving it!
T - Close to the nose, tons of vegetal, dank hop flavors. Very musky and green, but again, quite delicious. This was a challenging beer for me to review since coming up with descriptors was so difficult.
M - Medium-bodied, with a slightly sticky mouth-feel and moderate carbonation.
O - Again, a very unique beer, the Nelson hops bring so much to the party. I'd love to try this again, and will actively seek it out.

Serving type: on-tap

04-25-2011 14:24:43 | More by jsanford
Photo of silentjay
silentjay

Massachusetts

4.03/5  rDev -9.4%
look: 4.5 | smell: 4 | taste: 4 | feel: 4 | overall: 4

hazy golden color with a nicely sized pure white head that sticks around a while and leaves tonnns of lacing.

grapefruit, tangy tropical fruit, mango, a bit of spice, light rye bread, crackers.

juicy hops. not terribly bitter, but tangy and a bit sour like unripe mango with some peppery spice and grapefruit. light rye bread is definitely noticeable balancing the nelson hops.

lighter side of medium bodied with a nice supple carbonation that finishes pretty crisp but with a slightly tangy and sweet aftertaste. pretty refreshing actually.

another good hoppy offering from Alpine. good, but it doesn't redefine the style for me.

Serving type: bottle

03-01-2012 03:04:52 | More by silentjay
Photo of BEERchitect
BEERchitect

Kentucky

4.03/5  rDev -9.4%
look: 4.5 | smell: 4 | taste: 4 | feel: 4 | overall: 4

Deliciously rounded and profoundly unique with malt flavors of caramel and butterscotch balanced with citrus and winy notes- Nelson delivers the familiar wash of IPA flavors, but with a unique twist here and there to create intrigue and identity.

Pouring a firm orange camel color, the beer carries the standard hoppy hazy that allows only a mild glow to penetrate. Very well headed with a creamy egg shell white foam cap, the beer's froth retains remarkably and laces the glass with left over traces of foam. It's a sturdy looking beer.

Rich and zesty aromas seem to alternate from malty caramel in one whiff, but orange marmalade the next. Notes of herbs, grapes, citrus, and tropical fruits continue to emphasize the fruity-hop dominance of the ale.

Flavors are full of caramel, butterscotch, honey, and crisp grain as the barley makes a moderate impact on flavor. But what makes it's mark is the hops. Starting citrusy with the taste of grapefruit, freshly zested oranges, and a light mango flavor; the beer also weaves in the slightly woody flavors of white wine, juniper-gin, and sassafras for a truly unique counterpart to the ordinary citrusy-resiny hops. But the resin quality comes into play in finish with a decidedly bitter finish of drying hops, alcohol warmth, and light mint.

Medium bodied, the beer's early creaminess is quickly sheds, in favor of fleeting caramel malts, high hop bitterness, mild grassy astringency, and sappy closure. Only a linger of grapefruit bitterness reminds me of how dry the beer is and encourages a quick visit to the glass, much sooner than it should.

Although the beer has a lot of classic and intelligent characteristics that set it apart, the mild buttery taste gives the hoppy ale a rounded and rich taste while the winy hops give extra acidity with a somewhat twiggy taste. Likely considered flaws to some, the moderate tones of these properties give the beer more intrigue and seduction than they do deterrents.

Serving type: bottle

05-31-2012 06:24:15 | More by BEERchitect
Photo of dtmets84
dtmets84

New York

4.03/5  rDev -9.4%
look: 4.5 | smell: 4 | taste: 4 | feel: 4 | overall: 4

Thanks to saru96!

Poured into my HF snifter.

Pours a dark amber with a light foam leaving a tiny bit of lacing.

Nose is rather tame. Citrus and very faint hops.

Taste is hops. Get that orange taste w some caramel malt notes

Decent body and the taste seems to linger.

Second time having this guy and I felt the first one did this guy better justice then this bottle.

After have expo hoppy yesterday this guy is a more subdued second.

Serving type: bottle

09-15-2012 22:50:47 | More by dtmets84
Photo of writerLJBerg
writerLJBerg

Oregon

4.03/5  rDev -9.4%
look: 3.5 | smell: 4 | taste: 4 | feel: 4.5 | overall: 4

22oz bottle from Hamilton23. Thanks!

A: Brackish topaz with a whisp of head. Looks very still and serene.

N: Lime, ruby grapefruit, fresh cut grass clippings. Hints of conifer. Hops overshadow any malt in a good way. There is some biscuit/cracker, and I can follow the nose to some significant mango flavors.

T: Tropical to start, as with Pure Hoppiness, but this has a two tier effect that begins with the mango, grapefruit, pineapple and transitions into the cracker/bread and piney base. There's a significant amount of bitterness to this which is made all the more prominent by the zest and spice of the rye.

M: Dry, medium mouthfeel. Really cuts through the palate.

O: A very good IPA with an incredible bitterness that's well integrated into the whole. Drink and enjoy; Alpine is doing great work

Serving type: bottle

03-24-2013 23:05:00 | More by writerLJBerg
Photo of johnmichaelsen
johnmichaelsen

Oregon

4/5  rDev -10.1%
look: 4 | smell: 4 | taste: 4 | feel: 4 | overall: 4

On tap at O'brien's the other night.

The beer pours a light peach color with OK head retention, but very good sticky lacing. On the nose the beer is very citrusy and spicey. In fact, there's almost a speeramint aspect to the aroma that is intriguing. The flavors on the palate generaly replicate the nose, though there's not as much spice. In fact, the beer has a fairly light mouthfeel and is almost a bit watery. On the other hand, this beer is very drinkable, and it's really difficult for me to believe the abv. is over 7%.

I thought this a nice beer, but really nothing all that special. If I lived in the San Diego area, I doubt I would ever order this again, as there are just too many other delectable options to choose from around here.

Serving type: on-tap

12-20-2008 15:58:31 | More by johnmichaelsen
Photo of Overlord
Overlord

California

4/5  rDev -10.1%
look: 4 | smell: 4 | taste: 4 | feel: 4 | overall: 4

Thanks Jesse!

Pours a grainy orange/gold with a big white foam head, despite being a growler pour. Smells like some citrus, but mostly an interesting bready yeastiness I can't put a name to. I see other reviewers calling it "rye," fair enough. Maybe that's it.

Not the most explosive flavor I've seen out of Alpine brewing, but pretty smooth and drinkable. Some notes of grass, pineapple, and a little bit of what I consider the predominant west coast IPA hop flavors: pine and grapefruit. A bit muted, and definitely more of a pale ale than an IPA.

Drinkable, nice juicy mouthfeel.

Serving type: bottle

05-02-2009 07:01:43 | More by Overlord
Photo of francisweizen
francisweizen

Arizona

4/5  rDev -10.1%
look: 4 | smell: 4 | taste: 4 | feel: 4 | overall: 4

sunny day
grass and hay

liars club
beer and grub

aroma clean also hoppy
little bit of rye, but it's kinda sloppy

Taste is hoppy, rye is small
is this a Rye IPA at all?

Finish is pretty much the same

Taste like duet, with a bit more burn
Alpines folks have got to learn

Serving type: on-tap

09-21-2009 20:00:22 | More by francisweizen
Photo of mcallister
mcallister

Ohio

4/5  rDev -10.1%
look: 4 | smell: 4.5 | taste: 4 | feel: 3 | overall: 4

A nice copper orange color with a large slightly off white erupting head. Good lace and great retention.

Great nose on this beauty. Flowery esters lead into a big citrus kick. Some tangerine on the backend with a bit of white pepper and some piney aromas.

I'm a little let down to be honest. It's a good beer but lacking in mouthfeel and a bit watery. Lots of tangerine and citrus flavor with a long bitter finish. Malt is thin and hidden behind the hops. Nice grapefruit but the mouthfeel is a bit off. A bit spicey with a some floral and grassy tastes as well.

Serving type: bottle

01-07-2010 23:29:45 | More by mcallister
Photo of punkrkr27
punkrkr27

Michigan

4/5  rDev -10.1%
look: 4 | smell: 4 | taste: 4 | feel: 4 | overall: 4

Slightly hazy straw colored pour with a big, loose white head that fades to lots of lacing. Resiny hop aroma with lots of grapefruit, some floral pine and a vinous white grape note. The malt component is dry, earthy and grainy with a moderate sweetness. The flavor is white grapes, citrus, and toffee with some minty pine on the finish and a hint of butterscotch. The body is creamy and full with lots of soft carbonation.

Serving type: bottle

04-13-2010 19:24:50 | More by punkrkr27
Photo of Sammy
Sammy

Ontario (Canada)

4/5  rDev -10.1%
look: 4 | smell: 4 | taste: 4 | feel: 4 | overall: 4

I appreciate the understated bitterness of this IPA and it was reminicent of the Mikkeller, anlthough yes I did not do a vertical at this time. Pleasant appearance and aroma, like a white wine and fruity. I believe I enjoyed this attribute more so in the Mikkeller. I liked the rye edge. Very drinkable.Bomber courtesy of AugustGarage.
Had it a second time and just as amazing.

Serving type: bottle

05-09-2010 03:32:56 | More by Sammy
Photo of ChadQuest
ChadQuest

Illinois

4/5  rDev -10.1%
look: 4 | smell: 4.5 | taste: 4 | feel: 3 | overall: 4

Bone white head over a slightly hazy sunburst color body.
This beer smells great, very tropical and fruity, with the typical citrus present but not talking a front seat. Tropical is a major aspect of IPAs i search out, and these Nelson Sauvin hops have delievered. Taste is not as bitter as i was expecting which is a welcome change from a cali brewery and i am digging this, in fact dare i say with the rye aspect of this being involved there is a certain balance? However i would appreciate more dryness on the finish and more specifically and importantly more carbination, i think it is lacking a bit there, and would allow the great hop profile to pop out a bit more. Solid IPA i really am enjoying.

Serving type: bottle

05-12-2010 04:12:26 | More by ChadQuest
Photo of urwithdave
urwithdave

Florida

4/5  rDev -10.1%
look: 4 | smell: 4 | taste: 4 | feel: 4 | overall: 4

A big thanks to beersinner for trading me this fresh growler! Poured into a solo cup on a fishing trip! I know it's not ideal, but it worked!!!

A- Dark copper in color. two fingers worth of a off white head. Obviously I cant advise on lacing in my solo cup, but everything else about this brew was spot on.

A- Piney hops up front with loads of citrus.

T- Bitter hops start the show. There is a lot of tangerine flavor. Some grapefruit but it's not as vibrant as the tangerine. The spice from the rye is distinct in flavor. There is a tad bit of sweetness that emerges towards the end, however the bitterness and the spice from the rye are in control.

M- Medium bodied with a perfect amount of carbonation. Im guessing the growler was counter pressure filled because this thing didn't seem to lose a bit of fizz while in transit. It finishes dry with a lingering bitterness and spice from the rye.

D- A really crisp refreshing beer. Like I mentioned above, I drank this while on a fishing trip in 95 degree weather. The heat index was 110. It really hit the spot! I was a little disappointed that the 2 other peeps I was splitting it with enjoyed it as much as I did LOL!!!

Serving type: growler

06-17-2010 17:56:45 | More by urwithdave
Photo of RoyalT
RoyalT

Ohio

4/5  rDev -10.1%
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.

Serving type: bottle

10-04-2010 01:41:54 | More by RoyalT
Nelson from Alpine Beer Company
99 out of 100 based on 1,685 ratings.