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Nelson - Alpine Beer Company

Not Rated.
NelsonNelson

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

643 Reviews
THE BROS
-
no score

(Send Samples)
Reviews: 643
Hads: 3,131
rAvg: 4.37
pDev: 8.7%
Wants: 1,419
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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Beer: Reviews & Ratings
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Reviews: 643 | Hads: 3,131
Photo of hopsputin
4.21/5  rDev -3.7%
look: 4 | smell: 3.5 | taste: 4.5 | feel: 4.75 | overall: 4.25

A: hazy yellow. Poured on tap. Not much head

S: oniony garlic, pineapple, dank mango

T: sharp pineapple, mango, oniony garlic hops. Super juicy. Some strawberries. Very nice bitterness. Juicy again

M: medium. Perfect carbonation

O: worthy of the praise. Extremely well balanced ipa. (287 characters)

Photo of MarkIntihar
4.59/5  rDev +5%
look: 4 | smell: 5 | taste: 4.5 | feel: 4.5 | overall: 4.5

Poured from the bottle into my Chicago Bears pint glass. Once again, huge thanks to Brett!

A - Pours a golden yellow, with just the slightest hint of orange, and also with two fingers worth of pale white head. Retention is very nice once again, with half a finger's worth of head lasting throughout the experience.

S - Smells of fresh grapefruit, mixed with citrusy hops. There is an almost cider like quality in the nose that reminds me of Half Acre's Galactic Double Daisy Cutter, which makes sense as the main hop used in both beers is from the same part of the world. Really a perfectly balanced nose.

T - Follows well from the nose, but with more funk emanating from the hop profile than the nose would suggest. Definitely an interesting beer, as the hop funk dominates the mouth, with the citrus proving to be more of a background element than the balancing force it seemed to be in the nose. The cider-like quality to this beer is in full effect in the mouth, a perfect companion for this cold fall evening. As I swish it around in my mouth, the grapefruit and citrus comes through more, providing the balance present in the nose. When I do this, the taste is simply astounding! It's strange that it requires me sloshing this around a bit for the flavors to come together, and for that I'm docking it half a point.

M - The beer is very pleasant on the tongue, with a perfect amount of carbonation and absolutely zero alcohol burn, despite the slightly higher alcohol content for the style.

O - Overall a very well done beer. One I would definitely drink regularly if I had access to it! (1,599 characters)

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

Big thanks to Jesse for this great beer.

A: Pours a cloudy light apricot with a huge white head. Lacing lasts quite a while.

S: Wonderful citrus aroma with just a hint of malt.

T: Great smooth citrus hops upfront moving into mild malt. Finish is a fantastic grapefruit hoppy bitterness.

M: Lighter side of medium body with great carbonation.

O: What can I say. Some of my favorite IPAs come from Alpine. I could drink this all day. (436 characters)

Photo of jjdc
4.82/5  rDev +10.3%
look: 5 | smell: 4.75 | taste: 4.75 | feel: 4.75 | overall: 5

This beer looks stunning, like liquid sunshine in the glass. The nose is sumptuous with Sticky citrus notes of tangerine and grapefruit. The rye adds a dry backbone that is perfect complement to the juicy, tropical sweetness of the hops. This beer is perfectly integrated and balanced. As good as IPAs get. This is a treat. (323 characters)

Photo of CaptCleveland
4/5  rDev -8.5%
look: 4 | smell: 4 | taste: 4 | feel: 4 | overall: 4

Shared 22oz bomber obtained in trade from Vanlingleipa.

Cloudy, pale yellow liquid poured into DFH snifter. One-finger white head, thick lacing.

Aroma of sweet hops, lemon, orange and spice/pepper.

Smooth hoppy bitterness, mild spicy rye notes, grapefruit. All very subtle compared to Alpine's usual hop marvels. The pepper/spice rye lingers on the lips and tongue. Nice touch.

Medium body, well carbonated. Rye provides a bit more body.

This is a quality brew, for sure, but for the effort, I will take the more hop forward offerings from Alpine. (552 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 hoppytobehere
4.37/5  rDev 0%
look: 4.5 | smell: 4.25 | taste: 4.5 | feel: 4.25 | overall: 4.25

On-tap and apparently a keg from Alpine, not Green Flash.

Gorgeous straw colored ale with fluffy head. Nelson Sauvin hops are interesting and it's nice to have a showcase for the hop in a world-class beer like this. Rye malt provides good balance, bu t this one is all about the hops baby. I liked this one more than Duet, which I wasn't expecting at all. (360 characters)

Photo of iadler
3.77/5  rDev -13.7%
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. (1,071 characters)

Photo of Trilogy31
4.71/5  rDev +7.8%
look: 4.75 | smell: 5 | taste: 4.5 | feel: 4.75 | overall: 4.75

Wow what a great beer, pours two fingers of head and almost comes out with a mercury metallic hue when pouring, settles to a caramel orange in the glass. Nose is just full of citrus and tropical fruits and white wine with a touch of piney hops. Taste is a complex blend of candied citrus rind, bitter papaya, orange mango juice and some dark rye bread with a touch of sauv blanc notes at the end with the requisite ipa finish. Sculpin might have been dethroned in my book gorgeous beer. (486 characters)

Photo of lnashsig
4.69/5  rDev +7.3%
look: 4 | smell: 5 | taste: 4.5 | feel: 4.5 | overall: 5

Thanks to Augustgarage for this incredible California IPA. Poured into my Dfh tulip glass, pours a beautiful yellow sun color, about 1 finger of head quickly subsides with a little lacing. On the nose, I get sweet grapefruit and a buttery sweet flavor. I love it, this is a unique and wonderful ipa. Unlike any I have ever had. On the first taste, the hoppy goodness hits my palate, followed by grapefruit, and there is that buttery sweet flavor in the back. The nose is so filled with grapefruit that it smells like I am sticking my nose into a glass of ruby red. Mouthfeel- nice, silky, with just enough carbonation. Drinkability- I could drink this every day for the rest of my life and die happy.

I have seen other Ba's talk about this beer, and comment that it was way better than big hyped IPAs like PTE. I really have to agree. This may be one of the best regular IPAs I have had in my 10 yrs of craft beer drinking. (924 characters)

Photo of tr4nc3d
3.8/5  rDev -13%
look: 4 | smell: 4 | taste: 4 | feel: 3 | overall: 3.5

22oz bomber poured into my pint glass. Taken from notes

The appearance was that of a slight golden/light orange color with a slightly off-white two inch head. Average head retention that when subsides leaves small spots of lacing.

The aroma was a mix of citrus aromas with earthy herbal smells. I got pine and floral aromatics with grapefruit and tangerines.

The taste upfront was of citrus flavors with grapefruit and then following is some pine and herbal flavors. Slight spicy undertone of rye in the finish with biscuit and cracker like malts.

Mouthfeel was medium bodied with a little less than average carbonation.

Overall good beer, but nothing spectacular. I liked Duet better then this one and pure hoppiness. (723 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 comfortablynumb1
4.49/5  rDev +2.7%
look: 3.5 | smell: 4.5 | taste: 4.5 | feel: 4 | overall: 5

My last brew from a trip to Alpine a week or so ago. Wish I had more, but it's been a good ride!

A - Pours a golden yellow with a two finger off white head. Head retention is not the best, but there is some lacing that sticks to the glass...

S - Smells very inticing. Grapefruit, oranges, peach, and various other citrus fruits. Scent comes through like a bowl of sweet fruit...

T - Sweet malts, grapefruit, lemon, peach, oranges, and a little pine. Ends on a smooth hop bittereness with some lingering grapefruit. Rye makes a slight appearance in the finish, but it is very subdued. Nothing is over the top or out of place here. Delicious. Abv is very well hidden

M - Very smooth. On the lighter side of medium bodied with a below average amount of carbonation for the style. This is one of those beers that taste so good, and go down so easy; you can easily get yourself in trouble drinking. Ends crisp...

O - One of my favorites beers at the moment. Alpine strikes again with another exceptional brew. Now I just have to conjure up a way to talk the wife into heading back to Alpine...

Cheers... (1,104 characters)

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

Poured from a 22oz bottle into a tulip glass.

A: Color is a bright, light golden yellow. Pours with compact, bright white one-inch head. Substantial lacing as the head slowly disippates.

S: Hops smells are apparent even when pouring into the glass. Floral and tropical (mango) hops really dominate the smell. Smells clean and refreshing.

T: Like the smell, the hops really show up nicely. Tropical fruits (mango, pineapple, maybe apricot) with some floral and citrus notes. Mid taste, the rye flavors starts to show itself, although it's fairly mild. Just some slight spiciness and grain biscuity flavors. Finish is just a little bitter, but not in a bad way. The fruity hops help pull this beer through to the finish.

M: Medium body with good carbonation. Finish is dry.

D: Excellent. This is a very nice, easy drinking beer. The hops are big, but not aggressive or in your face. The rye is perfectly balanced and gives the beer a little body and spiciness without making it too big. Will definitely track this one down again. (1,032 characters)

Photo of snpub540
4.47/5  rDev +2.3%
look: 4 | smell: 4.5 | taste: 4.5 | feel: 4.5 | overall: 4.5

Poured into a pint glass from a bomber. Delicate lacing is left on the glass. Pale copper hue, slightly cloudy.

Aroma is grapefruit and citrus mostly with a nice hint of the rye in the back. Smells very clean.

Taste is a nice bitter, citrus symphony of hop deliciousness. Super smooth with a nice malt backbone and a crisp hop profile. No complaints whatsoever here on flavor.

Drinkability is great. No alcohol harshness or extreme tongue buckling bitterness. Smooth mouthfeel that is enhanced by the incredibly smooth taste. An almost perfect double IPA. (558 characters)

Photo of OlieIPA
4.69/5  rDev +7.3%
look: 4 | smell: 5 | taste: 4.5 | feel: 4.5 | overall: 5

Shared by Pehlman...thanks! Poured from a growler into an Alpine Pint glass.

A: Golden in color with a formidable head that dissipated slightly with each gulp. Tried reviving it a few times, but to avail. On the other hand, the lacing...as Tyler put so gently...was "bitchin!".

S: A lot of that musky and wheaty rye smell backed up with a very robust hop backing. Hard to describe, especially since this was my first RPA. I almost pick up some sort of citrus or apricot flavor, but I'm not sure. Basically...incredible!

T: An extremely complex flavor profile that includes a very distinct grain-like taste with leafy and piney hop character. These flavors jell together very well, making this dangerously drinkable beer with a mild bitter finish. Words can't describe the harmony this beer exhibits between being a session beer and an in your face flavor fest. Maybe not the flavor, but the complexity reminds me a lot of Sculpin.

M: Highly carbonated with a nice medium to full body feel.

D: One of the most drinkable beers I've had to date. Extremely flavorful and mild at the same time. Even my dad liked it...and he never likes beer.

Overall: A must try. Perhaps Alpine's finest beer and something that should be treasured by all beer lovers. Cheers! (1,262 characters)

Photo of Klym
4.59/5  rDev +5%
look: 4 | smell: 5 | taste: 4.5 | feel: 4.5 | overall: 4.5

I had had Nelson and Duet back when I was first getting into craft beer. I remembered liking both but thinking I liked duet a little more, and since that time that was about all I could remember about Nelson: that I liked duet slightly more. Having Nelson again has been a real treat, and I realize that you might not be able to compare the two as both are wonderful beers with quite distinct characters.

A: Such a crisp clear gold, only a little darker and hazier than your beer-commercial lager. A few bubbles spritzing up out of the body of the beer with a medium head sitting on top.

S: I sometimes forget to close my eyes when I smell a beer but this one really makes me close them. Something about the smell is enchanting in the way that say trees or fresh grass is. Like two vines of piney hoppiness and citrus juice and rhine are braided together. Smell is very uniform but brings to mind many things. Tons of forest and tons of orchard in this one.

T: The taste starts off a little dull when it hits the tongue, intensifies, peaks, then backs down into a simmering tingle. Basically the taste is the same character as the tongue with a touch of grain and bread, and with maybe more pine in the peaking bite and more juicy citrus as the taste backs down, breaking apart the alliance of the tastes more than one would suspect in the nose. The taste is so crisp and fresh while simultaneously being relaxed and smooth. Like a classic alpine IPA, this beer is refreshing and invigorating in such a natural and inspired way. Both Duet and Nelson make me actually *feel* good in a way that I haven't really encountered in other beers.

M: Almost all of the truly great IPAs I've had always confounded me when it came time to speak of their mouthfeel and taste separately, as they're always in so much harmony. The carbonation is lively and does its thing without reminding you that its there, and the body of this beer is a bizarrely light feeling upper medium. Runs in the mouth with an oily slickness and the bite hits all parts of the mouth but peaks and lingers on the roof of the mouth. Such a fascinating mouthfeel that one could spend many bottles dissecting.

O: There's just no excuse for not trying this beer if you like IPAs. I've been somewhat spoiled and had the chance to try quite a few at this point, and some of the hailed greats, but Nelson easily takes its position among the best of the best. Every time I try to criticize this beer I feel the heaviness of contriving faults. Get it, try it, and then get some more. (2,543 characters)

Photo of t420o
4.25/5  rDev -2.7%
look: 4 | smell: 4 | taste: 4.5 | feel: 4.5 | overall: 4

Big thanks to schmoopsbeer for this one

A- Pour produces a half finger head that is white/near off white in color. Though you can see the active bubbles in the beer, it did not produce much of a head with a semi-aggresive pour. The beer is light golden/ Burnt orange in color.

S- Well just like the description on the bottle says I smell a lot of grapefruit. That is accompanied by orange, and like I've seen on some other reviews a garlicky/musty type scent. Its not garlic but something similar to it I am smelling just cannot put my finger on it. Strangely enough this is not off putting at all and seems to fir right in.

T- Grapefruit, dry white wine taste, herbal flavor, and some tangerine. Some tropical fruit hints also. It is really hard toput a finger on just what I am tasting in this one but its somewhat similar to a white wine but with a richer, buttery-herbacious flavor that accompanies it. The Nelson Sauvin hops are very interesting and I enjoy them a lot. Slightly dry on the backend. Cannot feel a hint of alcohol. Excellent

M- Nice carbonation level. Nice density. Goes down super smooth.

O- An excellent and interesting beer that I highly recommend. Very drinkable (1,193 characters)

Photo of oggg
4.52/5  rDev +3.4%
look: 4 | smell: 4.5 | taste: 4.5 | feel: 4 | overall: 5

On tap at Liars Club

This brew is a terribly hazy deep yellow hue with a white wispy head. The aroma of peaches, lychee, flowers is unmistakable. On the tongue it is juicy, with loads of hop flavor -- the intensity of which almost rivals a spicy saison! The bitterness level is mild to moderate -- it won't twist your tongue like Wipeout IPA for example. The rye is barely spicy, very mild, but contributes a lot to the middle. Smooth and ridiculously thirst quenching. The abv tastes like 3%! Light to medium bodied.

Overall: oh gawd, I must learn to brew this... a brilliant (rye) APA, and another brilliant beer for Alpine (632 characters)

Photo of hu5om
4.75/5  rDev +8.7%
look: 4.5 | smell: 4.5 | taste: 5 | feel: 4 | overall: 5

thanks again to enelson for the nelson. perfect.
split with newk340
a- orange golden amber, white fluffy foam subsides to a white ring that leaves excellent lacing
s- orange citrus, bitter, white grapes, tropical fruit, nectarine?, very strong, with a rye spiciness
t- crazy, rye spicy, whie wine smoothness, very bready rye spice, light citrus. fairly piney also. mind=blown
m-amazingly smooth. i'm so overcome by the taste, that mouthfeel is a bit under the radar. very dry finish, champagne like.
d-i'm blown away. these hops need to be utilized more often. this was friggin great. up there with pte as a close second best ipa i've ever had. excellent. screw high life, this is the champagne of beers. (704 characters)

Photo of hawks10
4.54/5  rDev +3.9%
look: 4 | smell: 5 | taste: 4.5 | feel: 4 | overall: 4.5

22oz. bottle poured into my Southern Tier tulip...

Pours a golden straw yellow, lighter hue than expected, somewhat hazy. Two fingers of fluffy bright white head forms and leaves some nice chunks of lacing at the top of the glass...

Beautiful floral hop aroma, piny and resinous. Sweet and citric, tropical fruits, mango, pineapple with some sour green apple as well. Little to no malt presence, just a wonderfully sweet and earthy hop presence...

Earthy bitterness at first gives way to a load of sweet and fruity hops. Citrus peel and even some grape? A sweeter malty presence shows up adding some nice balance and depth...uniquely sweet IPA, very tasty and complex...

Medium bodied and somewhat chewy, sticky hop resin, oily and somewhat slick. Good carbonation gives a nice tingle with a bit of alcohol warmth...

Really enjoyed this beer, tasted it along with Pliny and Sculpin, and this one was my top of the three. Definitely would like to have this one again in the future... (987 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 jrnyc
4.92/5  rDev +12.6%
look: 4.5 | smell: 5 | taste: 5 | feel: 4.5 | overall: 5

I had this in a pint glass poured from a 22oz bomber.

A -Looks nice, nice orange color, medium head.

S: As soon as the bottle opens, the smell comes flying through, WOW!

T: This beer tastes great. A lot going on here, very hoppy, not bitter
, great taste also. A bit sweet.

M: good carbonation, feels very fresh and creamy.

O:This is a great beer. Has all the characteristics of a great IPA and incredible smell and taste. This one moves into my top 5/10. (462 characters)

Photo of MarcatGSB
4.47/5  rDev +2.3%
look: 4 | smell: 4.5 | taste: 4.5 | feel: 4.5 | overall: 4.5

Hair6a11 hooked it up. Huge score, really appreciate this one. Bomber poured into snifter.

Appearance: Copper/burnt orange. Frothy stubborn finger n a half head. Lacing is noteworthy. Very impressive.

Nose: Dry, citric, and sweet. Reminds me of an Jimmy Russell Old Fashion. Wet hop notes.

Taste: The rye is fantastic. It gives great support to the bitter hop.
Mouth: Chalk rye dryness. Really great. Carbonation was spot on and as the beer warmed up brought some great chew.

Drink and overall: Great beer. It really is. Can't argue there. Good hop character, complex body. Awesome. (590 characters)

Photo of gregshead
3.44/5  rDev -21.3%
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. (534 characters)

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