Nelson - Alpine Beer Company

Not Rated.
NelsonNelson

Educational use only; do not reuse.
BA SCORE
97
world-class

635 Reviews
THE BROS
-
no score

(Send Samples)
Reviews: 635
Hads: 3,070
rAvg: 4.37
pDev: 3.89%
Wants: 1,413
Gots: 379 | FT: 15
Brewed by:
Alpine Beer Company visit their website
California, United States

Style | ABV
American IPA |  7.10% ABV

Availability: Rotating

Notes & Commercial Description:
Beer added by: OStrungT on 08-11-2006

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
View: Beers (45) | Events
Beer: Reviews & Ratings
Sort by:  Recent | High | Low | Top Raters
Reviews: 635 | Hads: 3,070
Photo of IowaBiertrinker
4.16/5  rDev -4.8%
look: 4 | smell: 4.75 | taste: 4 | feel: 3.75 | overall: 4

My favorite TG IPA is Zeelander, and was really looking forward to this. Nose was awesome, but taste and finish were an abrupt Malty/Rye insult, and not as I had hoped. Still a decent beer. (191 characters)

Photo of GreesyFizeek
4.5/5  rDev +3%
look: 4.5 | smell: 4.5 | taste: 4.5 | feel: 4.5 | overall: 4.5

Bottle generously shared today Isaac, thanks dude.

Pours a golden light amber, with a small head, and a little bit of lacing. It's hard to discern lacing in a plastic cup, but whatever.

Smells real delicious, I get some grapefruit, grape, orange, rye, a bit of honey, and a moderate level of bitterness. As per the usual for Nelson hops, the hop flavor is slightly reminiscent of white wine. I wish I had more and more of this.

This is medium bodied, with a crisp, and slightly spicy mouthfeel, with a medium level of carbonation.

This beer deserves the hype it gets- it's really tasty. (590 characters)

Photo of breadwinner
4.64/5  rDev +6.2%
look: 4.5 | smell: 4.75 | taste: 4.5 | feel: 4.75 | overall: 4.75

Ah, Nelson, you fickle temptress, at times a very good beer, at times a stellar beer. When on, the tropical Nelson notes marry with the rye and a surprising lightness of body to create something truly special. (209 characters)

Photo of mschantz
4.66/5  rDev +6.6%
look: 4.5 | smell: 4.75 | taste: 4.75 | feel: 4.5 | overall: 4.5

Sampled on tap at Craft and Commerce in SD. Pours a bright, yet hazy, straw color with 1/2 inch of fine bubbled head that stood up well into the beer. Nose is dominated by slightly tart citrus notes and pine with biscuity malt backing. The taste is more malt than the nose would lead one to believe but the balance was beautiful as the tart citrus flavor was wonderful. Creamy mouth feel. Love this beer - the hype is well deserved. (436 characters)

Photo of TheFunkyBuddhaAdvocate
5/5  rDev +14.4%
look: 5 | smell: 5 | taste: 5 | feel: 5 | overall: 5

Epic west coast ipa that I had the pleasure of enjoying 8 days fresh out of a bomber.
Amazing Pine notes and amazingly drinkable although I prefer generally more bitter ipas this is Amazing (190 characters)

Photo of Drsven
4.99/5  rDev +14.2%
look: 4.75 | smell: 5 | taste: 5 | feel: 5 | overall: 5

This beer is amazing! Depending upon your location this is probably more difficult to get your hands on than Pliny or Heady. Drank fresh at Alpine on draft and brought back a couple of bottles. Don't be fooled by the cloudy pour or hoppy smell, this is one easy to drink beer! (278 characters)

Photo of StrongRepublican
4.16/5  rDev -4.8%
look: 4.25 | smell: 3.75 | taste: 4.25 | feel: 4.5 | overall: 4.25

A: Pours slightly cloudy, pale orange/yellow (tangerine) with a thin fizzy white head that dissipates quickly leaving bubbly white lacing.
S: Some citrus/grapefruit with bright tangy/floral hop notes and big elements of white grapes. Slightly musty, some resin, tang.
T: Lots of white grape, some must, florals and subtle citrus notes, vinous tannin and tree fruits - nectarine/tangelo. Definitively hopped without any lingering bitterness or vegetal notes. Caramel backbone with slight hints of spice/rye; medium body that finishes slightly dry but well rounded.
O: Great showcase of Nelson Sauvin hops, bright and full of flavor. (631 characters)

Photo of T100Mark
4.08/5  rDev -6.6%
look: 4.25 | smell: 4.25 | taste: 4 | feel: 4 | overall: 4

On tap at The Local Peasant, in Woodland Hills, CA. Poured into a smaller than usual Nonic glass.

Appearance - Bright yellowish orange color (odd for an IPA). Cloudy. Big, fine head that settles down but never entirely goes away. Good stickage. A very handsome ale.

Smell - Fresh cut grass. Citrus rind.

Taste - A hop forward beer to be sure. The initial flavor is that of fresh squeezed grapefruit juice (the beer almost tastes like a Greyhound). The ale also has a very herbal taste. The hops are prominent but only slightly bitter. A touch spicy. There is just enough malt to keeps things in check. Tasty.

Mouth - Slightly slick. A little oily. Good.

Overall - This beer reminded me, a little, of Deschutes Fresh Squeezed (similar citrus hop flavor). The Deschutes beer is superior, however, because it possesses more of a toasty malt flavor to balance out the hops. Also, I assumed that this beer would have a sweet malty English taste due to the name (Lord Nelson?). The beer has neither the color nor the malt foundation of an English bitter/pale ale. For these reasons, this is a good beer but not a great beer. (1,125 characters)

Photo of 2dogbrew
4/5  rDev -8.5%
look: 3 | smell: 4.25 | taste: 4 | feel: 4 | overall: 4

What an odd looking beer. Not sure if this is typical, but the beer appears to have a slight green hue. Fortunately it smells great, lots of citrus. Taste is a notch below the smell, but still a high quality IPA, wasn't wowed by it based on Alpine hype. Would happily drink this again, but don't plan to seek it out. (320 characters)

Photo of KATCanada
5/5  rDev +14.4%
look: 5 | smell: 5 | taste: 5 | feel: 5 | overall: 5

On tap in the brew pub and multiple bottle.
Pours a great hazy orange even my non drinking wife was blown away. Just a great looking beer. Like all Alpine beer I've ever had the nose is beautiful and fruity. Beautiful balance, long smooth finish. I love Nelson hops and this is my favorite example. A top 5 beer of all time for me for sure. (340 characters)

Photo of Rocknrao
4/5  rDev -8.5%

The color is a lurid orange, and it pours a bit on the cloudy side. The foamy pour settles down into a pretty light head quickly. The lacing it leaves behind its minimal.

The hop character is bursting out of this beer though it tastes a bit unbalanced to me.

I like this better than dogfishhead 90 minute ipa, although it's probably not a great direct comparison.

Don't like Nelson as much as Hoppy Birthday, but it's still good.

Maybe it's the rye, or maybe it's the higher abv, but there's a harshness to this that HB doesn't have, in my opinion.

Had it on draught at toronado in SF on an empty stomach. (610 characters)

Photo of MisSigsFan
4.71/5  rDev +7.8%
look: 5 | smell: 4.5 | taste: 4.75 | feel: 4.75 | overall: 4.75

From a 22oz bottle: Pours a hazy golden yellow color with a creamy white head. Tons of thick lacing coats the glass. I've had Nelson that looks as cloudy as orange juice and as clear as a macro lager. This one is quite hazy, but not quite as much as I've seen. Smell is truly unique. Grape, grass, weed, and some tropical fruit and citrus. Taste is just bursting with tropical fruit, grapefruit, earthiness, grass, weed, and grape. Very very little bitterness. Just a touch of spiciness from the rye. This beer is all about the hop aroma and flavor. Mouthfeel is awesome. Like no other IPA. The rye lends so much smoothness to the body. It's like silk. I've even described this beer as Nelson Sauvin milk before. It's that smooth and creamy. Overall, in a class of its own. There are very very few IPAs like this. Only something like Noble Nelson Showers compares (which I thought was even better). If you can get a bottle, go for it. If you've never had it and it's on tap (Green Flash brewed), try it out too, but it's much better out of the bottle. (1,054 characters)

Photo of amsguitarist
5/5  rDev +14.4%

This is the best IPA I've ever had. Smooth, complex and refreshing. Reminds me of drinking a refreshing frothy glass of orange juice with all the complexities of an IPA. Yes. It is that good. (191 characters)

Photo of SierraJosh
5/5  rDev +14.4%
look: 5 | smell: 5 | taste: 5 | feel: 5 | overall: 5

Thanks David. I may move to SD for the sole purpose of drinking bombers of this beer on the regular.

Hazing yellow, odd for an IPA. Tropical/grapefruit, white wine, herbal & floral on the nose. Beautiful aroma. Massive tropical fruit and white wine on the taste, the spice of the rye pulls the finish dry and leaves you wanting another sip. Soft carbonation and minimal lacing on the glass. Remarkable beer, unique and simply the best. Nelson transcends the IPA style. (472 characters)

Photo of BergBeer
5/5  rDev +14.4%

Look: Crystal clear straw gold with a thick white head. Good lacing and lots of legs.

Smell: Pungent citrus and rye spicy notes make this one amazing smelling beer. Getting white grapes, white pepper, orange, tangerine, grapefruit, a hint of farmhouse or straw funk, kiwi, all rounded out by a rye pepperyness. I wish they made air fresheners of this beer!

Taste: White grape and delicate white wine notes on the attack give way to tangerine, orange blossom, grapefruit hints, a hint of sweet malt, and rye comes out big on the finish to balance out the white wine notes. This beer really let's the nelson hops shine through and the rye plays a beautiful balancing game. The rye really brings the nelson hops to the for front without masking them as all. Nelson hops are too damn tasty!

Mouthfeel: Wet on the tongue while the rye adds a bit of bite and buzzes the tongue even furthering the nelson hops to the forefron.! Goes down wet and covers the mouth and throat. No hint of booze.

Overall: Outstanding brew. Too many times breweries don't let nelson hops roam on their own but alpine boldly goes where most are afraid and came back with one shining example how to make a nelson IPA ! Alpine is the pinnacle of IPAs in SD right now and this one delivers in spades! If your love nelson hops or want to try them out the right way get this beer (1,354 characters)

Photo of EveningCordial
4.75/5  rDev +8.7%

Bottle poured into snifter.

A- golden orange, small white half finger of head, a little little lacing, medium carbonation

S- Circus of citrus fruits. Orange, grapefruit, and a cider-like smell were up front. Definitely a little funk present that gives it a scent like a wine. Some grasses in the back.

T- Very juicy and dank. Fruity hop character from the Nelson and a touch of pine give way to sweet potato, rye, and an almost sour white wine character. Little spice in there too. Great depth of flavor for a single hop beer.

M- Medium bodied and wholesome, being a rye IPA. Decent amount of carbonation. Smooth drinker.

O- Outstanding beer. One of my favorite single hopped beers. Dig the dankness that mixes with a sweet and tangy smooth finish. Nelson should be a must on any beer advocates wish list. I just wish it was easier to obtain. (863 characters)

Photo of IpaBeerDrinkers
4.99/5  rDev +14.2%
look: 4.75 | smell: 5 | taste: 5 | feel: 5 | overall: 5

So often these over hyped beers end up being a let down...not this one. This may very well be the best single IPA I've ever had. Nelson is at the forefront of this brew. It is incredibly smooth and balanced. Very easy drinking with its light body. Smell is fantastic. Color is a nice golden hue. Fantastic beer. (311 characters)

Photo of MLDucky
4.5/5  rDev +3%

Love the rye in this. Pours a golden hue, hazy, dissipating head. Get a very grainy, malty, rye nose with the predominant hop profile of nelson. Flavor follows suit. Malty, rye with great hop flavor. Not lingering, not overly bitter. Quintessential drinking ipa. Wish I could get this every day. (303 characters)

Photo of RyanK252
4.65/5  rDev +6.4%

On draft at City Beer Store in San Francisco

A: Pours a hazy golden yellow with a creamy white head that laces beautifully

S: Big pine and citrus hops, some lime and orange, nice malt sweetness behind it as well

T: Citrus hop glory, orange grapefruit lime lemon all in there, some tropical fruity notes as well, all nicely countered with malt sweetness, a little grapefruit bitterness on the finish but not overwhelming. A little alcohol comes out as it warms

M: medium body, almost creamy smooth, perfect amount of carbonation

O: Couldn't believe my luck when I saw this available. Lives up to it's reputation as an excellent brew (637 characters)

Photo of rjp217
4.75/5  rDev +8.7%

Bottle pour.......

A - Perfect orange color, nice sticky lace retention

S - White wine, delicious green apples, grapes, hint of grass on the end

T - Much of the same as the nose except you get a strong orange grapefruit flavor to start with a nice bitter bite on the finish

M - Medium feel medium carb, bitter on the palate

O - Nelson Sauvin hops are amazing. Super complex, as you get a lot of citrus, grapes and some grassy pine on the finish. This is excellent! (469 characters)

Photo of JMUbrewz
4.75/5  rDev +8.7%

Possibly the best single IPA I've had. Delicious, tropical flavors with a tiny bit of spice from the rye. The pale malt really allows the hops to shine. So smooth and drinkable. (178 characters)

Photo of More_betterness
4.71/5  rDev +7.8%
look: 4.25 | smell: 5 | taste: 4.75 | feel: 4.5 | overall: 4.5

Reviewed from notes:
On tap at Amazing Grapes in Rancho Santa Margarita CA 7/17/14.

A: Cloudy light golden body. A small creamy pearl white head on the initial pour recedes to a small ring around the rim of the glass. Glows when held up to the light, and would score higher if head retention was a little better.

S: MASSIVE juicy tropical fruit, and grapefruit. Potent white wine notes round out the aroma. Hints of pine. One of the best aromas I've ever encountered in an IPA. Not very many singular aroma profiles overall, but absolutely stunning in its simplicity.

T: Sweet white wine, zesty orange, and dank grapefruit. Crackery malt makes itself known as it warms. Minimal bitterness when compared to its peers. Again, very simple, but still absolutely beautiful.

M: Light/Medium bodied and effervescent. Long, drying finish accentuates the hop character.

O: After having this a few times, this is more than likely my favorite "single" IPA in the world. A wonderful exercise in balance flavor-wise when compared to most of its "West Coast" counterparts. Massive hop flavor and aroma without the hyper aggressive bitterness that characterizes the style. This is my "Desert Island" beer. Cheers Alpine! (1,210 characters)

Photo of lordofstarside
4.55/5  rDev +4.1%
look: 4 | smell: 4.5 | taste: 4.75 | feel: 4.25 | overall: 4.5

Review from notes I texted myself, on tap earlier today at Mellow Fellow in King's Beach

Pours a hazy yellow gold- a lot more on the yellow than gold side, almost blonde looking. No visibility, a finger of foam that receded pretty quickly, not bad lacing or anything, very mild carbonation

Smell has a lot of tropical and citrus. Strong grapefruit and pine apple backed up with a very catty pine scent, finishes with a mild bready malt tying it all together with a touch of alcohol

Taste is with the nose- a ton of fruit, a nice mix of grapefruit and other mild citrus notes meeting pineapple and other tropical notes. Same pine and litterbox scent from the smell translates in the best way, finishing with a mild bready malt and alcohol. Taste follows the smell a lot better than most beers

Feel falls on the lighter side. Dry finish, high bitterness, alcohol concealed well. Dangerously sippable

Overall a hands down incredible IPA. Well worth the hype, definitely a top tier beer. I can't get enough of it. Perfect after a day at the lake (1,048 characters)

Photo of DannyBigs
4.97/5  rDev +13.7%
look: 4.5 | smell: 5 | taste: 5 | feel: 5 | overall: 5

Alpine has just started distributing their kegs and I have been lucky enough to be in LA and a frequent customer to the bars where they get Alpine's stuff. This Rye IPA has a very unique hazy and golden color, not typical of other Rye IPAs I've had (Hop Rod, Ruthless). The smell is on point, I can't think of a better nose to a beer that I've ever had (Pliny is up there though). This sets you up for an unbelievable palate pleaser. Very very drinkable (got me into some fun last night) and not something you can burn out on. If you can get your hands on this, it's an unforgettable beer. A top 5 IPA for sure. (611 characters)

Photo of HopLover1
4.58/5  rDev +4.8%
look: 4.75 | smell: 4.75 | taste: 4.5 | feel: 4.5 | overall: 4.5

A=deep orange, hazy, not a lot of light getting through

S=tropical, mango, papaya, slight citrus at colder temp

T=taste is right on pace with the aroma, all kinds of tropical flavors. real big.

M=the flavors and mouthfeel change drastically as beer warms, all kinds of flavors being released

O=outstanding brew, one of a kind flavor, great use of the nelson hops, did I mention outstanding? (394 characters)

Nelson from Alpine Beer Company
97 out of 100 based on 635 ratings.