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Nelson - Alpine Beer Company

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643 Reviews
no score

(Send Samples)
Reviews: 643
Hads: 3,127
rAvg: 4.37
pDev: 3.89%
Wants: 1,418
Gots: 393 | 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:
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
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Reviews: 643 | Hads: 3,127
Photo of dannyhipps
4.59/5  rDev +5%
look: 4 | smell: 5 | taste: 4.5 | feel: 4.5 | overall: 4.5

Poured from a 22 oz bomber into an Imperial Pint glass-

A- Pours a hazy golden yellow that's more reminiscent of a fresh German lager than an IPA.
A wonderful tight head forms that lingers forever and leaves tight lacing behind...

S- Piquant, resinous and dank hops and hints of citrus peels are evident after the first whiff. The smell coming off this beer is SHARP, kind of like fresh-cut onions, if you will. Faint phenolic hints of Scotch-tape adhesive and freshly rained on asphalt linger in the background... Also I promised myself I wouldn't, but do I smell rye toast floating in the background?

T- Follows the nose. A wonderful bitter, right up front, with a flash of dank-hop grapefruit. As the citrus-hops goodness continues, the spicy rye and heavy hop-oil middle gives off minor notes of salty onions and/or garlic, yet just in time this disappears, to fade into a relatively clean bitter off of the finish...

M- In a word, great. Slightly slick, but never gets cloying in the middle, although a little juicy, thanks to the dank hop-oil goodness going on... Nice tight carb and slightly spicy and astringent hops and/or rye malt ends up giving the beer a nice slightly dry finish...

D- Superb. A wonderful if not slighlty over the top twist, enjoyable for any hop-head... (1,288 characters)

Photo of BoardwalkBock
4.6/5  rDev +5.3%
look: 4.5 | smell: 4.5 | taste: 4.75 | feel: 4.5 | overall: 4.5

This is my second Alpine beer, Pure Hopiness being the first. PH was very good. Let's see if Nelson lives up to the hype. Thanks to Sebowski for the trade.

A: Surprisingly very light looking. Yellow, slightly hazy. Lacing covers the glass. Good head retention. Almost looks like Hop Ranch.

S: Big grapefruit, citrus and guava. Very nice caramel malt base. Quite amazing.

T: Taste follows the aroma. Very big hop profile but it does not overpower the beer. Very balanced beer. This satisfied my hop thirst on every single level.

M: Light to medium bodied. Perfect carbonation and bitterness.

O: After having the pleasure of trying so many delicious, wonderful IPA's in the past few weeks (Gandhi-Bot, PtE, PH, Jai Alai, Schlafly Tasmanian IPA, Sea Hag, Hopslam, etc, etc, etc.), Nelson definitely got my attention. Wonderful beer by Alpine. Glad to have acquired this since I failed at making it to the brewery when I was out in SD. Thanks again to Sebowski. (962 characters)

Photo of Auracom
4.6/5  rDev +5.3%
look: 2.5 | smell: 5 | taste: 4.5 | feel: 4.5 | overall: 5

Big thanks to John (pmarlowe) for sending this one a couple of thousand miles to me.

A - This is a homely old brew. Bizarre, dirty, murky golden coloring. Great looking head though - very much the same as Exponential Hoppiness. White and fluffy with solid retention and lacing.

S - Such a unique nose. Herbs, grass, rye, peppercorn, and other spices combine with a lightly fruity, juicy white wine hop profile.

T - Intriguing balance across light hop notes, more rye, soft bread, butter, white grapeskins, melon, more herbs, and honey-coated malts.

M - Medium-high carbonation. Somewhat creamy. Light-medium body. Dry finish.

D - Wonderfully creative. The balance the rye imparts with the distinct New Zealand hops makes this an easy standout for me. Reflecting on this brew a bit further, I realize that this is a pinnacle of differentiation in a style chock-full of generalized aromas and flavors. I've been drinking a ton of APA/IPA/DIPA's lately, and nothing has stood out as much as this one. (1,007 characters)

Photo of Zach136
4.6/5  rDev +5.3%
look: 4.5 | smell: 4.5 | taste: 4.75 | feel: 4.5 | overall: 4.5

Appearance: Hazy yellow, good lacing.

Aroma/Flavor: White wine, tropical and stone fruit with floral notes. Touch of rye spice on the finish.

Mouthfeel: Easy to drink, very little aparent bitterness, bone dry rye finish. (224 characters)

Photo of m1ked
4.6/5  rDev +5.3%
look: 4.5 | smell: 4.5 | taste: 4.5 | feel: 4.5 | overall: 5

A growler full of this love was given to me for Valentine's Day along with a growler of BP Victory at Sea....man am I lucky or what!?!

A- pours a clear golden yellow with a half inch foamy white head. Plenty of bubbles and streamers.

S- Like a hop soaked piece of rye bread.

T- Wow! Rye forward closely followed by a rye-hoppy punch. More of the floral than citrus hops. Think of hops sandwiched between some rye bread.

M- Smooth, crisp, great carbonation.

D- I f you like rye, and I do, this is an awesome beer. Think brewery meets jewish deli. (550 characters)

Photo of Georgiabeer
4.6/5  rDev +5.3%
look: 4.5 | smell: 4.5 | taste: 5 | feel: 4.5 | overall: 4

Had this on-tap at the Toronado San Francisco anniversary fest. I really, really liked this beer. I've been an Alpine fan for a while, and I think they do a great job with their hoppy beers. I love the zingy, bitter hop onslaught on this one coupled with the spicy rye, it just really works for me. Poured golden with a wispy head, but very nice continuous lacing. Very fresh tasting herbal hops in the nose, quite a bit of dill aroma that I get from the Nelson Sauvin hops sometime, and a bit spicy in the finish as well. I just love the taste of this beer. Lots of herbal hops followed by lots of pine, pretty much my favorite hop situation. Long, tangy, spicy, piney, and herbal. Beautiful interplay between the spicy, slightly sour rye and the hops. Very bitter and long in the mouth with quite an austere malt profile. This is a delicious beer, but its a mouthful. (869 characters)

Photo of auroracrisis
4.6/5  rDev +5.3%
look: 4.5 | smell: 4.5 | taste: 4.5 | feel: 4.5 | overall: 5

22oz into a Sierra Nevada pint glass.

Straw colored with some haze to the body. Decadent lacing and a head that sticks around for the duration of the session.

Biting grapefruit and orange zest on the nose, with some hop resin beefyness to it. Pale malt and a touch of rye brings in some of the malt, but there isn't much. Some mango, pineapple, and guava in there too.

Big grapefruit and other citrus zest open up the beer and linger with hints of pale malt and some of that rye spiciness again. Those nice tropical fruit flavors poke their head in again and offer some balance from the bitter zest and spicy rye. Fantastic stuff.

Soft on the tongue with a crisp thin-medium body.

Oustanding zesty citrus flavor with pale malt, some bold rye, and tropical fruit flavors. This is probably my favorite IPA of all time. If it were available here, I'd drink it nonstop. (872 characters)

Photo of Reagan1984
4.6/5  rDev +5.3%
look: 4.5 | smell: 4.5 | taste: 4.5 | feel: 4.5 | overall: 5

Again, a huge thanks to Patrick (Jctribe25) for providing this beer.

Pours with a very aggressive white head. Very creamy and enough structure to rise above the top of the glass by a good margin. Begins to collapse on itself almost immediately. The beer is a bright clear brass color with a scant amount of carbonation rising. Rings of lacing remain.

Aroma is bright, fresh, fruity, slightly spicy, slightly green (vegetal) like walking in the woods. At first some big grapefruit, but this mellows and is more balance as you drink it. Very fresh.

Another fantastic beer. There is some spiciness hear that I enjoy. Probably partially from the Rye and also from the hops. Balance is actually quite nice and this does not appear to be as bitter as the Duet in my book. Slight sweetness and light bready background flavor. The finish is fruity then spicy.

Medium/light body with just the slightest carbonation. Almost but not quite oily. More juicy from the fruit flavors.

A wonderful beer. The Nelson Sauvin hops are interesting and I am not sure I've ever had them before. This is a well balanced beer front to back. Each element builds on the previous and the final combination is fantastic.

I'll be back! (1,210 characters)

Photo of reebtaerG
4.6/5  rDev +5.3%
look: 4.5 | smell: 4.5 | taste: 4.75 | feel: 4.5 | overall: 4.5

Had on draft at Alpine on 4/2/14

A-Pours a light tangerine hue with a nice, 1.5 finger frothy white head that leaves decent lacing on the way down.

S-Grassy, Citrus, tons of grapefruit, mixed with light sweet fruits.

T-Bready and a tad spicy that leads into lots of citrus, blood orange, tangerine, grapefruit and has a nice bitter finish.

M-Medium bodied with medium carbonation.

O-This was wonderfully complex and balanced and one of the best IPAs i’ve ever tasted, bar none. (488 characters)

Photo of craytonic
4.6/5  rDev +5.3%
look: 4.5 | smell: 4.5 | taste: 4.5 | feel: 4.5 | overall: 5

I was blown away by this one, big surprise.

Appearance: Translucent, honey drenched straw hay yellow. Great head and lacing. I perk up a bit and look forward to the bouquet.

Smell: Big juicy grapefruit, pine, orange, and pineapple.

Taste: Just enough malt for an IPA, along with pineapple, grapefruit, pine, pine resin, orange zest, apricot, tangerine, and white grapes. This stuff is delicious. Please put it in six packs.

Mouthfeel: Perfect light body and carbonation, tickles the tongue without any annoyance.

Drinkability: Disappeared way too fast, I wish this was a growler, not a bomber. Every time I reach for an IPA I will wish it was a Nelson. (657 characters)

Photo of mabermud
4.61/5  rDev +5.5%
look: 4.25 | smell: 4.5 | taste: 4.75 | feel: 4.25 | overall: 4.75

After drinking this beer for more than a decade, I have finally come around to rating this fine brew.

A - Orange/yellow body with a short white head. Appears creamy like a creamsicle.
S - Juicy, sweet, piney, and hoppy.
T - Amazingly delicious. This beer is brimming with flavor. Pine, hops, and tropical flavors.
M - Medium and dry.
O - This beer has always been something very, very unique to me. It is sunny, rich, and delicious. (433 characters)

Photo of pmarlowe
4.61/5  rDev +5.5%
look: 3.5 | smell: 5 | taste: 4.5 | feel: 4 | overall: 5

On tap at O'Briens. Pint glass.

Pours a light straw gold, not much head or lacing to speak of. Smell has a nice citrus (grapefruit mostly) and pine balance, spice, a lot of honey and malt, kind of grainy. Really interesting and unique smelling. Tastes similar, with grapefruit and spice/grain up front, pine, and again kind of a honey and malt sweetness. Not as much of a hop bomb as I was expecting. Medium-full body and medium level of carbonation, kind of grainy mouthfeel. Overall, a super interesting and well crafted IPA. (528 characters)

Photo of cbutova
4.62/5  rDev +5.7%
look: 4.5 | smell: 5 | taste: 4.5 | feel: 4.5 | overall: 4.5

Freshly brought back from the brewery on 10/27/11, consumed 11/10/11 with Chico1985. Reviewed from notes.

A- Pours a golden yellow into a pint glass with a big, frothy white head. Good size and head retention. Thick webs of lace coat the glass where each sip stops.

S- Juicy tropical fruit hops right off the bat with a sweet peach feel as well as orange juice, canteloupe, grapefruit. Not much else but this is hops used to perfection.

T- Impressively follows the nose, the hop profile does not change drastically as with other IPAs. Grapefruit, peach juice, citrus and orange notes all the way.

MF- Creamy light body with smooth carbonation. Slightly bitter aftertaste which allows the hop flavor to really shine nicely.

Great use of late hop additions to get a West Coast profile to be reckoned with. Not over the top, smooth tropical citrus IPA. (854 characters)

Photo of sukwonee
4.62/5  rDev +5.7%
look: 4.5 | smell: 5 | taste: 4.5 | feel: 4.5 | overall: 4.5

A: Orange with 1 finger head with LOTS of lacing on the side of the glass. Cloudy body

S: I LOVE IPAs that smell like this. Reminds me of Zombie Dust. Grapefruit, not much pine in the nose, orange, peach, very fruity.

T: Grapefruit and peach. Not much piney bitterness until the very end and it's not too overpowering. I would says this is only slightly bitter but definitely more hop forward and dominent. The bottle says that it has some rye in this - I can't really tell. Not too bitter, not too sweet. Refreshing and fruity.

M: Crispy, light to medium body, near perfect!

O: I love this beer. My favorite Alpine IPA to date. I really like the hops used in this beer. Highly recommended. Perfect for summer! (717 characters)

Photo of jeff1973
4.62/5  rDev +5.7%
look: 4 | smell: 4.5 | taste: 4.75 | feel: 4.5 | overall: 4.75

Poured from a 22oz bottle into a Marin Brewing pint glass. Bought at the brewery last week, so no more than 2 weeks old.

A - Hazy light gold. Eggshell head w/ really good lacing.

S - White wine, catpiss, cantaloupe.

T - Same hops as the smell comes thru, but w/ great intensity. Also get some peach, pineapple, loquat, really fruity and intense. Ends with a nice, but subtle grapefruit bitterness and drys out nicely. Not a lot of malt here, mostly tropical fruits.

M - Medium w/ medium carbonation. Gives a silky, creamy body.

O - This is my favorite beer right now. Just an intense tropical fruit explosion in beer form. (627 characters)

Photo of evanforbeer
4.62/5  rDev +5.7%
look: 4 | smell: 4.5 | taste: 4.75 | feel: 4.5 | overall: 4.75

pours a pretty somewhat murky gold with silky/silvery white head

nose- what a nose. fresh grapefruit, earthy rye spice/ white pepper, buttery bread

taste- starts with floral and sweet grapefruit and tangerine and a dash of tropical fruit, turns crisp and deliciously dry as with rye- like white-peppery buttered rye toast, with a dash of lemon lingering throughout it. finish is fruity and a bit biscuity

feel- crisp, clean, hoppy, light-medium bodied, buttery, spicy

i love this beer! A fantastic IPA, and probably the best rye beer I've had. Darn near perfect (565 characters)

Photo of PerHops
4.62/5  rDev +5.7%
look: 4.5 | smell: 5 | taste: 4.5 | feel: 4.5 | overall: 4.5

A- Gorgeous light golden orange with a nice bright white head. A little bit soapy, but full bodied enough to stick all over the glass.

S- Now that's an IPA! Super fruity, a faint hint of pine, some herbacious goodness.

T- Pineapple, mango, orange, with a sweetness that asserts itself without overwhelming. Super hoppy, super fruity, clean semi dry finish. Outstanding.

M- No complaints here in the least. Just enough carbonation to hold up to the intensely fruity flavors.

O- Great IPA in every way imaginable. Really happy I got to try one of these a day removed from the brewery. (588 characters)

Photo of scottfrie
4.62/5  rDev +5.7%
look: 4.5 | smell: 5 | taste: 4.5 | feel: 4.5 | overall: 4.5

22oz bottle into Gulden Draak tulip. Big thanks to sleepyhead for this one!

A: Pours a hazy dark iced-tea amber with a large, frothy, off-white head that slowly faded into a thick foamy film that left incredibly thick sheets of lacing down the glass.
S: Huge juicy grapefruit smell. Very citrusy and juicy smelling with tropical fruit notes and a hint of lemon zest as well. Amazing.
T: Super fruity-sweet sherbet flavors. This tastes like tangerine sherbet. It has an amazing and complex hop flavor. At first the beer is very citrusy with a big grapefruit punch, but then it becomes creamy and tropical with a buttery pineapple flavor. The rye is present in the very finish with a touch of spiciness. Aftertaste is creamy yet bitter and juicy all around.
M: Silky smooth mouthfeel and soft carbonation over the medium body. Not viscous, syrupy or overly sticky, with a pleasant bitterness in the finish.
D: I had a very hard time describing the flavors in this beer. I don't think I've had an IPA or DIPA quite like this one. I could drink this forever. Thanks again Jeff for this amazing beer! (1,098 characters)

Photo of MCorrea
4.62/5  rDev +5.7%
look: 4.5 | smell: 5 | taste: 4.5 | feel: 4.5 | overall: 4.5

A- Pours a very light orange with a fluffy white head that lingers for quite a while. Slight haze.

S- Heavy on the grapefruit. Very pleasing citrus aroma.

T- Similar to smell. Big grapefruity flavors. Finish is not dry or too bitter. Great balance. The rye adds a great dimension to the overall flavor.

M- Not too thin or too thick. Just right. Carbonation is perfect.

O- Another winner from Alpine. This brewery has a masterful handle on any hoppy style of beer. (467 characters)

Photo of Jayli
4.62/5  rDev +5.7%
look: 4 | smell: 4.5 | taste: 5 | feel: 4 | overall: 4.5

Acquired from mthomas84 via SS '11 so a big THANK YOU goes out to him
poured in to a pint glass

A: This beer pours a rich hazy copper color with a 1/4 inch of bone white sudsy head. Head recedes immediately and leaves sudsy sheets of lacing on the glass.

S: Nose is big fruity notes - mango and pineapple, as the beer warms more pine and grapefruit notes come in. There's a hearty caramel backbone too.

T: Taste starts with a heaping dose of pine and earthy bitterness. Caramel underlays the entire beer but begins to blend extremely well with the juicy mango and pineapple flavoring. Perhaps even a touch of apple. Light tangerine citrus bite in the finish.

M: Medium body, medium carbonation, crisp at first and the beer almost thickens and becomes oily and slick.

O: Goes down easily, extremely tasty, not too filling, ridiculously well hidden kick, excellent representation of style. This is by and far one of the best IPA's that I've had! (948 characters)

Photo of charliedvrs
4.62/5  rDev +5.7%
look: 4 | smell: 4.5 | taste: 5 | feel: 4 | overall: 4.5

Pours a light golden amber with two fingers of fluffy white head, sticky lacing all the way down the glass. The aroma and taste are both full to the brim of white grapes, giving it a flavor similar to white wine. Sharp hop blasts of grapefruit, musky wet grass and herbal notes, backed by a slight spiciness I assume is from the rye, which complements the hop profile perfectly. Also getting a bit of that catty, onion flavor I'd normally associate with simcoe, though in a much more subtle way. Mouthfeel is medium bodied with a low to medium carbonation and slightly dry, finish. Fresh, slightly acidic citrus notes linger on your tongue for longer than you can wait to take another sip.

Really a beautiful beer. Sometimes I feel I've reached a point where even the best Double IPAs taste repetitious. This one was refreshing - in more ways than one. (853 characters)

Photo of regspeir
4.62/5  rDev +5.7%
look: 4 | smell: 4.5 | taste: 5 | feel: 4 | overall: 4.5

Poured a HUGE head that settled to a thinner but long lasting one. Lacing is apparent, although certainly not heavy. Good carbonation. Color is a cloudy orange/copper. Wow, this smells perfect for the warm day it is. Nose is lemon and orange and some spice. Taste is first lemon, orange/mango but with a great spicey bready malt and that rye backbone. Bitterness is very mild in the finish. So refreshing...it does NOT deteriorate as it warms. This is a pretty perfect balance for me. Sessionable? You bet. This is an amazing beer - great nose, so flavorful, and leaves you wanting more (and I DO)! How can you left-coasters sleep at night keeping this to yourselves!? (668 characters)

Photo of billshmeinke
4.62/5  rDev +5.7%
look: 4.5 | smell: 5 | taste: 4.5 | feel: 4.5 | overall: 4.5

Bomber poured into my trusty pint glass.

A: Pale gold with hints of amber in color. One finger pillowy white head that doesn't quit. Big chunks of lacing left behind.

S: In your face grapefruit, light malt sweetness, a bit of pine as well.

T: Tangy grapefruit, light sweet caramel, dank, pine and resin hops.

M: Very smooth. Light to medium bodied. Clean crisp finish.

D: Great for 7% abv. Very happy I tried this beer, definitely gonna purchase again. (457 characters)

Photo of slentz
4.62/5  rDev +5.7%
look: 4.5 | smell: 5 | taste: 4.5 | feel: 4.5 | overall: 4.5

Thanks to Brett for this bottle in our recent trade. Served at 50 degrees. Split into two tulips.

A: Easy pour leads to about a fingers worth of nice white head. Really nice lacing here with a couple floaties but seems like that is just the yeast. Nice golden straw color...looks really nice. 4.5

S: Smell is awesome. Really nice hops and fresh fruit, little bit of grass but lots and lots of grapefruit and citrus. This beer smells super delicious. 5.0

T: Really enjoying this beer, tastes awesome. Lots of super fresh hops with really nice bitterness. Just the perfect amount of sweetness. 4.5

M: Mouthfeel is very nice carbonation is spot on and this beer leaves a really nice hop resin throughout. 4.5

O: Overall I really really like this beer. Tons of super fresh hops and great smell. Alpine hit a home run with this beer. Really glad I got to try this one and will be looking for more at any chance. 4.5 (915 characters)

Photo of bjacobsen
4.62/5  rDev +5.7%
look: 4.5 | smell: 5 | taste: 4.5 | feel: 4.5 | overall: 4.5

Pours pale golden and clear with a tight two finger head.

the aroma is delightful. The label says the grapefruit scent will get you every time you put the glass to your lips and they weren't lying. The spice from the rye is definitely there and sets this apart from other well crafted ipas. Pine noted in there as well.

Taste is remarkably balanced. Citrus and piney up front with rye spice but a strong malt backbone. Dry finish with lingering spice.

Well carbonated with Medium mouthfeel.

Extremely drinkable. Tasty. Balanced. Unique. I really like this offering. Alpine just might have the best overall hop lineup around. (631 characters)

Nelson from Alpine Beer Company
97 out of 100 based on 643 ratings.