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Nelson - Alpine Beer Company

NelsonNelson

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BA SCORE
99
world-class

1,687 Ratings
THE BROS
-
no score

(send 'em beer!)
Ratings: 1687
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: 1,687 | Reviews: 536 | Show All Ratings:
Photo of dmsohyea
dmsohyea

California

2.35/5  rDev -47.2%
look: 3 | smell: 2 | taste: 2 | feel: 4 | overall: 2.5

On-tap at the brewpub in Alpine. Taster glass.

A - standard IPA coloring, maybe a bit lighter yellow. Some lacing and good retention.

S - Smells floral and a bit uninviting. Not sure how I feel about it, but I couldn't know the horrors to come.

T - Tastes just off. The rye flavor and yeast selection just makes for a blah taste. I didn't enjoy it one bit and couldn't finish the 4 oz taster. Not super bitter, but it did taste a little like i was eating a flower.

M - Mouthfeel was above average. Not that I could really notice through the flavor that I hated.

O - Didn't like it. Sorry guys, I feel like this one is WAY over rated.

Serving type: on-tap

05-01-2011 06:34:46 | More by dmsohyea
Photo of airohead2001
airohead2001

Illinois

2.4/5  rDev -46.1%
look: 4 | smell: 2 | taste: 2 | feel: 3 | overall: 3

Part of a blind tasting that included Nelson, Duet, and Pure Hoppiness. Nelson was my least favorite and Pure Hoppiness was my favorite.

A - Nelson is a nice looking IPA - hazy brown, one finger head with excellent retention, and some nice lacing.

S - Not a whole lot of smell here. Just some mellow pine. No citrus or malts. Not as painfully piney as Duet, but also a whole lot less exciting.

T - Similar to the smell. In my opinion, this one is pretty weak and bland. The hop profile is very mild. Some malts show up in the finish, but without a piney or citrus hop kick, this one is clearly lacking.

M - Similar to Duet, the mouthfeel is so-so. Pretty thin.

D - I guess this beer is drinkable because it is so thin. But really, it just lacks so much flavor that I can't see myself wanting much more.

After having such high expectations for Alpine, I have to admit that I was pretty disappointed by this beer and Duet. Luckily, Pure Hoppiness was outstanding.

Serving type: bottle

07-02-2010 04:18:39 | More by airohead2001
Photo of alkchrios
alkchrios

New Hampshire

2.98/5  rDev -33%
look: 3.5 | smell: 3 | taste: 3 | feel: 2.5 | overall: 3

Purchased at the "best damn beer shop" in san diego california on vacation with my girlfriend. she spend a semester in new zealand and since something about this bomber had to do with NZ I was pressured into getting it.. it wasnt that bad but I was not all that impressed. Its a golden ipa rendering it a bit less hoppy with a lower IBU than I would prefer.. still not a bad beer by any means. Poured a copper color with a minimal head..very basic almost bland appearance. Upon the first sip I got a lot of grapefruit and burnt sugar...a bit of coriander comes to the nose which is a pleasant suprise. This beer is very crisp and slightly complex..it seems as though a ton of flavor is rather non-existent but still has some of those citrus tones I previously mentioned...the flavor just kind of dissipates the more you drink it.

Serving type: bottle

09-02-2010 21:56:20 | More by alkchrios
Photo of rmalinowski4
rmalinowski4

Illinois

3.08/5  rDev -30.8%
look: 4.5 | smell: 3 | taste: 3 | feel: 3 | overall: 3

Poured into a Mikasa tulip from a 22oz bomber.

Pours a clear straw color with two fingers of fluffy white head that sticks around for awhile and leaves tons of lacing. Very aggressive pour. You can see lots of tiny bubbles dancing up the glass to the nice crown that seems to be sticking around.

Smell is citrus, tangerine and pineapple, with some earthy pine in the background. The smell is somewhat faint and you really have to work to pick up the different components. Smells nice but should be stronger.

The smell is the opposite of the taste, lots of earthy pine upfront with some faint citrus grapefruit and pineapple in the background. The finish is of more bitter pine and earthiness. Was hoping for more citrus, but still not bad. I just expected a different flavor from the nose.

The mouthfeel is thin but not watery, and the carbonation is lively. It is easy to drink and pretty refreshing.

Overall this is not a bad beer, but it not great either. Expected more citrus than what was delivered. I would drink it again and reccommend that others try it as well. Slightly above average.

Serving type: bottle

06-03-2011 23:59:42 | More by rmalinowski4
Photo of MichaelinFishers
MichaelinFishers

Indiana

3.1/5  rDev -30.3%
look: 3.5 | smell: 5 | taste: 2.5 | feel: 3 | overall: 2.5

Poured from a bomber into two pint glasses for my wife and I to split. Thanks to Esther for the trade.

A: Pours with a very pale head, very light retention and just a little lacing. The color is a little odd. There's an unusual hue to it that I would describe as almost pink, but I'm slightly colorblind, so take that with a grain of salt.

S: Wow! The aroma is incredible! I'd heard that Nelson Sauvin smells almost wine-like, but this is amazing! (Looking on the label, it actually says that. How about that!) Delicate, fruity, floral, this is a beautiful aroma hop.

T: OK, this is where is starts to let down. Now that I've looked at the label, I'm reminded that this is a rye beer. And the rye just isn't working for me with such light malt accompanying it. I've had, and loved, other rye beers (Red's Rye, Cane & Ebel), but those pair the rye with bolder, fuller malts.

M: Nice, but nothing special. Pretty typical for a west coast IPA.

D: Having a hard time getting past the taste. I wouldn't go as far as to say that I dislike it -- I finished my pint with no problem -- but I don't think I'll be seeking this one out again.

Serving type: bottle

04-02-2010 21:35:22 | More by MichaelinFishers
Photo of beerwolf77
beerwolf77

Wisconsin

3.18/5  rDev -28.5%
look: 4 | smell: 2 | taste: 3.5 | feel: 4 | overall: 3

Huge thanks to BeerFMAndy for another Alpine beer procured on his trip out west.

Bottle split and poured into my tulip the beer is golden yellow with a slight orange tint. Two fingers of off white head settle leaving spotty lace.

The aroma is mostly citrus hops. However there are a few components that perplex me. I pick out an off putting burnt rubber smell and a bit of onion. It also seems a touch skunky.

The flavor is much better than the nose. Citrus like hops are the main thing I pick up. A slight grassiness and a bit of the burnt rubber is there again.

Medium bodied with moderate carbonation.

Overall a bit of a dissapointment. Expo and duet were quite good. Their brother nelson not so much. Maybe another bottle someday will change my mind.

Serving type: bottle

07-11-2010 19:29:11 | More by beerwolf77
Photo of CuriousMonk
CuriousMonk

Virginia

3.18/5  rDev -28.5%
look: 3.5 | smell: 3.5 | taste: 3 | feel: 3.5 | overall: 3

Thanks to Grapehops for the extra! Poured from bomber (no date stamp) into a pint glass. Pours hazy gold, medium to thin off-white head, pretty lacing. Nose is soft, fleshy stonefruit and papaya, lush and fruity, with both fresh and dried pineapple here as well. Flavors are soft and fruity, but deceptively bitter. Pineapple and guava in the mouth, as well as a pervasive nutty earthiness from the rye. Mostly upfront palate, but some "white wine" acidity on the finish with caraway again on the long finish. Quite a complex beer but was not my style among my favorite IPAs. Overhyped IMO, so I am going against the tide on this one.

Serving type: bottle

03-15-2011 00:13:59 | More by CuriousMonk
Photo of ZAP
ZAP

Minnesota

3.2/5  rDev -28.1%
look: 4 | smell: 3.5 | taste: 3 | feel: 3.5 | overall: 3

Very unique IPA...the much talked about Nelson Sauvin hops exude an aroma and flavor unlike any IPA I have had before.

If I had to describe in one word I would say Herbal...almost like tea but this has big chive/garlic notes in the aroma and taste....much more so than Summit hops which can give off some of that as well.

To be honest I am not a huge fan of the characteristics I am smelling and tasting but it is so unique it is enjoyable to taste something different..

Body is medium...easy drinking...there is just a hint of the spicy rye which complements the hops nicely.

I am glad I tried this but one is enough for me.

Serving type: bottle

10-31-2009 05:30:02 | More by ZAP
Photo of BeerFMAndy
BeerFMAndy

Wisconsin

3.25/5  rDev -27%
look: 4.5 | smell: 2 | taste: 3.5 | feel: 3.5 | overall: 3.5

22 oz bottle split and poured into a Sierra Nevada tulip. 7% ABV, no date.

A - Clear golden yellow beer pours from the bottle. The tall pour creates a nice bone-colored head that rises to two fingers and lowers without haste leaving thick, patchy lace all over the glass.

S - It's got a surprisingly low nose for an IPA. Nelson finally starts to open up but it may have well stayed low. The first thing I smell is an off-putting burnt rubber aroma that continues to decline the more I smell it. A tiny hint of skunkiness appears in the back but it's definitely not an aroma I'm font of in the least. Beer smell is pretty absent here.

T - Burnt rubber still pulls through into the flavor but is mostly hidden (thank God) by citrusy, floral hops. A light and unintrusive caramel malt backing provides a sweet balance to the pine, grapefruit, and floral "green" hops. It still doesn't amount to much in my book though.

M - Nelson is medium-bodied and smooth with a mellow bitterness to the finish. There is a twang of astringency from the burnt rubber on the finish that continues to be a little off.

D - Meh. A very weak IPA this one is. Rubber all over the place is a big turn-off. It's still drinkable but I won't be looking to get it ever again.

Serving type: bottle

07-05-2010 18:38:04 | More by BeerFMAndy
Photo of DearthVader
DearthVader

California

3.4/5  rDev -23.6%
look: 5 | smell: 3.5 | taste: 3 | feel: 4 | overall: 3.5

22oz bomber poured to my La Fin Du Monde tulip (thanks for the glass Alex!)

What a beautiful beer. Pours a clear golden yellow that shoots bubbles of carbonation ferociously to the top where it meats the billowing pure white 3" of foam. The head dissipates to a creamy crown and a thin layer of film over the top. Gobs of lacing clinging to my glass. Picture perfect.

Smell is maltier than expected. The sweet malts overpower the crisp citrus and rye I was expecting my nose to explode with. I still get hues of slight grapefruit and orange peel. Definite notes of earthy bark tones, and the nice hop finish.

Taste has a powerful punch of grapefruit, but yet again the malt takes over. Slight orange and lemon zest, followed by the nice slightly hopped finish.

Extremely drinkable beer and perfectly carbonated. A dangerous beer with a ABV, but I could imagine drinking these all summer long if more available.

I was definitely expecting more. I'm starting to wonder if this is an old bottle, which I would be very upset with the store I bought this from yesterday. I will most definitely revisit this beer and hopefully be able to come back in and change the scores a little bit. I have an insane amount of respect for Alpine and the things they do.

Serving type: bottle

07-22-2011 22:03:58 | More by DearthVader
Photo of gregshead
gregshead

California

3.43/5  rDev -22.9%
look: 3 | smell: 4 | taste: 3.5 | feel: 3 | overall: 3

A - Light, light yellow color. Did a double take and almost asked the bartender if they handed me the correct beer.

S - Citrus and pine hops domintate the smell

T - Pine and Citrus/Orange hops dominate the taste. If their is malt/rye taste, it didn't show up for me.

M - Very light and carbonated mouthfeel. If I didn't have taste buds, I'd swear this beer was a wheat or hefeweizen by feel and appearance.

D - Overall, an ok IPA. I wasn't awed but I wasn't upset either. I would drink again but I would take other IPAs before it.

Serving type: on-tap

09-07-2010 06:26:48 | More by gregshead
Photo of juhl31
juhl31

California

3.45/5  rDev -22.5%
look: 3.5 | smell: 3 | taste: 3.5 | feel: 4 | overall: 3.5

-a very foggy yellow color with a white head. lacks much head retention

-good amounts of grapefruit. big time meaty english hop smell, but not a good meat smell if that makes sense at all

-probably the most actual rye tasting ryePA i have had. that meat is back up in there. the hop profile tastes english for sure, but not as much in the malt side

-very thick and smooth for an IPA

-not a great one for me. my least favorite of the alpine IPA's. i warmed up to it a bit as i got towards the bottom of the glass, but i still wouldnt want to order more. i am usually a big fan of ryePA's too

Serving type: on-tap

11-14-2010 09:14:07 | More by juhl31
Photo of joepais
joepais

Maine

3.5/5  rDev -21.3%
look: 3 | smell: 3 | taste: 4 | feel: 2.5 | overall: 3.5

Big thanks to errantnight for hooking me up with this. Bottle spit among friends produced a smaller white head than expected that went off to nothing. it has a somewhat cloudy yellow in color body to it.

I will say I wasn't to much impressed with the new hop variety. I didn't get the grapefruit aroma the touted on the bottle but more of grassy earthy hops to it. It was nice but having tried this right after their Duet It was a little underwhelming.
The flavor was kind of a nice for Rye. PA and I will say one of the better of that hybrid that I have tasted. It had a good balance of pepper and hop to it and it finished rather dry in the mouth. The feel was light with somewhat a lack of carbonation for me. I think this brew needed more.

I finished the glass easily. it's a ok beer but I have had better in this Hybrid of a style.

Edit.. after looking at others reviews I would be up to try this one again to see if it wasn't a fluke or a bad bottle

Serving type: bottle

02-27-2010 17:28:47 | More by joepais
Photo of Stoneman78
Stoneman78

California

3.53/5  rDev -20.7%
look: 4 | smell: 4 | taste: 3.5 | feel: 3.5 | overall: 3

On draft at O'Brien's
A- Clear golden orange hue, minimal head that congregates to a cluster of foam in the center, sticky lacing
S- HUGE rye malts and bread malts, subtle citrus and grass hops
T- Taste is dominated by rye malts to an overwhelming extent (almost like eating a jewish deli sandwich), opens up to some grass and pine hops, finishes with a rye bread aftertaste
M- Medium-bodied, oily texture, highly carbonated
D- This is the most rye-heavy beer I've ever tasted, definitely an acquired taste that loses points for me personally (not a big fan of rye bread), the dominating rye appears off-balance and limits overall drinkability

Serving type: on-tap

12-11-2007 08:23:17 | More by Stoneman78
Photo of Bendurgin
Bendurgin

Maine

3.53/5  rDev -20.7%
look: 4 | smell: 3.5 | taste: 3.5 | feel: 3.5 | overall: 3.5

A truely exciting bottle from Randy in the Loko4locals Bif! Thanks homey! Poured into a tulip. Pours a hazy golden color with a little bit of an orange hue. A nice cap of white head sits on top.

A little bit of sweet carmael in the aroma. Just a little bit of citrus hops in the background. A big orange aroma though. Big orange juice aroma. A little bit of a rye flavor. A big bitter hop flavor is a lot more noticable on the pallet than the aroma. Lots of juicy orange on the aroma.

Nice light body with good carbonation. A little bit sticky somehow. Overall pretty tasty here. Pretty malty for an IPA but ths is darn good.

Serving type: bottle

07-26-2011 04:14:04 | More by Bendurgin
Photo of andrewinski1
andrewinski1

New Hampshire

3.53/5  rDev -20.7%
look: 4 | smell: 3.5 | taste: 3.5 | feel: 3.5 | overall: 3.5

Thanks to Ben for sharing! Poured into a tulip. Nice hazy orange color with a half inch head that leaves a lot of sticky lacing.

The aroma is orange candy and mango, slightly sweet.

The taste starts out a little sweet and follows with orange candy and a hefty dose of bitterness to balance out the sweet malt.

The body is medium, and this is pretty refreshingly drinkable with the smooth carbonation.

Well I am happy to finally have some Alpine, I really want some more!

Serving type: bottle

07-26-2011 04:14:34 | More by andrewinski1
Photo of Rayman
Rayman


3.55/5  rDev -20.2%
look: 3 | smell: 4.5 | taste: 3 | feel: 3.5 | overall: 4

A - Poured into a chilled 16 oz glass, the bottle itself was just pulled from my refrigerator at the said temperature. Yellow golden hue that is transparent with a very light head.

S - Smell was very pleasing and a strong citrus aroma which can only be described as piney and grapefruit. The smell of this American IPA alone makes my mouth water

T - Having the privilege to try a lot of IPAs this ranks up there really well. Its not your average IPA, that being said the initial taste goes in well, but after it is sharp. The taste of rye really comes in that instance. It feels as if your mouth puckers a bit and just wants to keep drinking.

M - Mouth feels a bit puckered, perhaps because this is where the grapefruit characteristic comes out. If i were describe this after taste. I think it is what gives the characteristic of the grapefruit used and that gives it a personality. Which is strong flavorful and tad bitter like a grapefruit

O - This is definitely a must try because this beer will not disappoint the IPA enthusiasts. It will definitely be a plus if you do like grapefruits.

Serving type: bottle

05-13-2012 03:15:03 | More by Rayman
Photo of olympuszymurgus
olympuszymurgus

California

3.58/5  rDev -19.6%
look: 4 | smell: 4.5 | taste: 3.5 | feel: 4 | overall: 2.5

this beverage came with a bit of reputation in the sd area, as many of the breweries visited informed us we'd be mistaken were we not to head over to alpine. when i arrived, they struggled to determine what order i should taste in, but were convinced i should finish with this unique beverage. the nelsons have an arrayed aroma and flavor, it was like having a bite of something colorful off of someone else's plate when they weren't watching and you didn't pay attention to what they ordered. playfully citrus with an angry spice contributed both by the hop and the rye. i'm not sure what to make of this beer, but i'd like more to try. it's kind've like a rhinocorn. i don't know if it's even real. a fun and spicy rye.p.a.

Serving type: on-tap

03-05-2010 08:07:34 | More by olympuszymurgus
Photo of BrewerB
BrewerB

Florida

3.58/5  rDev -19.6%
look: 4 | smell: 3.5 | taste: 3.5 | feel: 4 | overall: 3.5

Alpine Beer Company has a favorable reputation amongst BA members and even sports a few beers in the top 100, including Nelson. Since they don't make their way up to the SF Bay Area, I used a recent trip to San Diego as a great excuse to visit them in person.

Pours a somewhat hazy, medium orange color with a thin off-white head.

Prevalent grapefruit hoppy nose backed up by floral notes. Touches of pineapple, too.

Herbal hops mingling with a light malt spiciness. Minor presence of tropical fruity hops. Moderate level of bitterness. Lingering, chardonnay-like long dry finish.

Medium-light bodied with moderate-low level of carbonation.

Overall this one isn't quite living up to its top 100 status, in my opinion. I'd take a Union Jack, Torpedo, or Stone IPA over this, no-brainer. Hop flavor/bitterness lacks variety and pungency. Not a bad beer by any stretch, just not as good as it could be.

Serving type: bottle

09-20-2011 03:57:19 | More by BrewerB
Photo of GRG1313
GRG1313

California

3.63/5  rDev -18.4%
look: 4 | smell: 4 | taste: 3.5 | feel: 3.5 | overall: 3.5

An IPA with the addition of rye.

Pours a clear yellow tinted amber with a huge puffy pure white head.

Nose is fresh pineapple and a hint of lactobacillus that fades with some air. Nose gets nicely perfumy and floral.

Mouthfeel is medium bodied and nicely balanced.

Flavor profile is bitter burnt rye toast and bitter coffee with an undertone of lacto. Flavors are actually quite complex although not for everyone.

Finish has a tart bitter character to it, along with bitter black coffee and burnt toast and is long lasting. Nice rye character through and through.

Serving type: bottle

12-25-2010 00:34:24 | More by GRG1313
Photo of kirok1999
kirok1999

Ohio

3.68/5  rDev -17.3%
look: 4 | smell: 3.5 | taste: 3.5 | feel: 4 | overall: 4

Nice clear amber with a rising white head that fades pretty quickly and leaves a nice ring of lace with each sip.
Smells of some nice citrusy, grassy hops. There's a nice, sweet malt backbone to support the hops. Nothing is overpowering or overwhelming, just a nice sipping IPA.
Feels rich and creamy and leaves a lingering sweet residue. Well done for an American IPA.

Serving type: bottle

06-21-2010 18:37:54 | More by kirok1999
Photo of glazeman
glazeman

Pennsylvania

3.68/5  rDev -17.3%
look: 4 | smell: 3.5 | taste: 3.5 | feel: 4 | overall: 4

Part of a blind tasting involving Pure Hoppiness, Nelson, and Duet. Reviewed from notes. Poured from a 22 ounce bomber into a snifter.

A: I like the color of this better than Duet, as it is a little bit more golden in color. It poured a

S: A pleasant smell, but not very intense. Mostly pine, with a bit of oranges. More malty than the other two Alpine IPAs at this tasting.

T: I liked that this was a fairly balanced taste, with definite hops up front, but some noticeable malt character as well. The rye comes through at the end, which is nice, but overall everything tasted just a bit watered down.

M: Pretty good, but a tad thin for my liking as I look for a bit more stickiness and aftertaste such as I found with Pure Hoppiness. Nice level of carbonation.

D: Better than Duet in my opinon, but not nearly as good as Pure Hoppiness. If this was available at a bar nearby, I'd give it a try again, but would not actively seek out another bottle. Too many better options that are easier to get in the Midwest.

Serving type: bottle

07-05-2010 19:36:19 | More by glazeman
Photo of kbutler1
kbutler1

Minnesota

3.68/5  rDev -17.3%
look: 4 | smell: 3.5 | taste: 3.5 | feel: 4 | overall: 4

Bottle. Pours a clear light copper color with a coastered white head. Nice fruit aroma mostly dominated by grapefruit. Medium mouhfeel. Nice malty backbone with a hoppy forward grapefruit rind notes. Bittenrss lingers. Nicely drinking. No alcohol notes found.

Serving type: bottle

06-14-2011 13:01:11 | More by kbutler1
Photo of Bierguy5
Bierguy5

Ohio

3.73/5  rDev -16.2%
look: 4 | smell: 4 | taste: 3.5 | feel: 3.5 | overall: 4

22 oz bottle, 7% abv. Pours a hazy golden color, with a great lookin white rocky head. Great head retention and lace. A real looker.

Grapefruit, citrus, floral and piney hop aroma. A bit of spicy aroma in the back end. A note of sweet caramel malt.

Some sweet pale and caramel malt up front. A nice spicy edge from the rye. Bitterness is restrained at first, however it does intensify and linger on the palate. Citrusy and floral notes.

Medium body, lower carbonation. Alcohol is well hidden. Seems a bit thin. Pretty nice.

Serving type: bottle

01-07-2010 23:32:48 | More by Bierguy5
Photo of iadler
iadler

Illinois

3.73/5  rDev -16.2%
look: 4 | smell: 4.5 | taste: 3.5 | feel: 3.5 | overall: 3.5

22 oz. bottle poured into a pint glass. Big thanks to DearthVader for sending this one.

A- Pours a clear gold with a nice two finger head that slowly dissipates into a nice white cap. Little bits of sediment floating around. Some nice spots of lacing are left behind

S- Fresh ruby red grapefruit juice, peach, pineapple, white grape, mandarine, peppery spice, funk, grass, pine and sweet malt. Very complex and intoxicating smell. My girlfriend could not stop smelling the beer.

T- Grapefruit, pineapple, peach. mandarine, white grape, rye, pine and some sweet biscuit malt. Has some floral and herbal hops including basil. There also seems to be this garlic/onion flavor that hurts the taste for me.

M- Medium carbonation and body and is pretty smooth. Finishes sweet with a good amount of herbs and a bit of orange.

O- A very interesting IPA. Not to familiar with Nelson Sauvin hops, but added some nice white wine qualities as well as the rye adding some peppery spice. I much prefer Duet and Pure Hoppiness over Nelson, that onion/garlic taste really got to me.

Serving type: bottle

07-14-2011 03:53:39 | More by iadler
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Nelson from Alpine Beer Company
99 out of 100 based on 1,687 ratings.