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Nelson - Alpine Beer Company

Not Rated.

Educational use only; do not reuse.

651 Reviews
no score

(Send Samples)
Reviews: 651
Hads: 3,195
Avg: 4.39
pDev: 20.05%
Wants: 1,414
Gots: 405 | 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: 651 | Hads: 3,195
Photo of larryarms847
4.7/5  rDev +7.1%
look: 4.25 | smell: 4.75 | taste: 4.75 | feel: 4.5 | overall: 4.75

Appearance is a bright, but cloudy sun golden yellow that pours a lemon shaving colored head.

Smell is wonderful, immediate bombardment with grapefruit and tropical aromas.

Tastes just as wonderful as this smells, fresh grapefruit, slight malt on the backend, love me some Nelson Sauvin hops.

Mouthfeel is well carbonated and tropical.

Overall an outstanding IPA, definitely in my top favs.

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Photo of Tele
4.45/5  rDev +1.4%
look: 4.25 | smell: 4.25 | taste: 4.5 | feel: 4.75 | overall: 4.5

A 4.25: Hazy, but a pretty orange golden color. Pours a largish off-white head.

S 4.25: Kind of mild, but it could be obscured by other aromas at the bar I'm drinking it at. Picking up lots of hops with dank and citrus. Also getting some spice (probably from the rye).

T: 4.5 : Lots of hops up front with a similar, unique spice as on the nose. Follows with some grapefruit and tropical fruit. I little bit of bitterness on the end. Orange lingers on the aftertaste.

M: 4.75: Really creamy and a bit dry at the end. Goes down so easy.

O: 4.5: Great IPA and really interesting characteristics from the rye. Definitely up there with some of the greats in terms of flavor but different enough to stand out on its own. As far as single IPAs, I think I slightly prefer Duet.

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Photo of Tony49er
5/5  rDev +13.9%
look: 5 | smell: 5 | taste: 5 | feel: 5 | overall: 5

Serving Type- On tap poured into a 13oz tulip glass

Appearance- Hazy peach and straw color, finger and a half of fluffy white head, lacing soft but strong

Smell- WOW....Tons of tropical fruits on the nose, papaya, mango, peach, mandarins, great white wine dryness and hop presence as well..just awesome

Taste- Yep another WOW....Tons of tropical fruits again, papaya, mango, peach and mandarins, awesome Nelson Sauvin hop dryness almost like a great white wine...just fantastic, tons of sweet tropical notes, but also great hop bitterness to counter the sweetness

Mouthfeel- Medium light body and soft carbonation

Overall- One of the BEST Beers I have ever had and easy one of the BEST IPA's I have ever had just a world class beer all around...if you have never had this beer and you are able to track it down on tap or in the bottle do yourself a favor and get some...CHEERS

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Photo of StJamesGate
4.24/5  rDev -3.4%
look: 3.5 | smell: 4.5 | taste: 4.25 | feel: 4 | overall: 4.25

On draft at Toronado, San Francisco.
Rose tan, no head.
Mad gooseberry and papaya nose.
Almond croissant and rosewater then big grapefruit, spiced white grape, kiwi and kumquat hops.
Grapefruit juice end and powdery bitter linger.
Medium, chewy, some oil.

Hops redux. Tart, yet perfumed and delicate. So grapefruity it’s almost a sour. Maybe loses some of the more delicate NS notes, but also probably the fullest expression of the hop.

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Photo of ThickNStout
4.52/5  rDev +3%
look: 4.25 | smell: 4.75 | taste: 4.5 | feel: 4.25 | overall: 4.5

22oz bottle from zrab11 (sweet freakin extra!). No dicernable bottling info. Served in a Cigar City teku.

Pours hazy straw yellow with a vague peach hue and a finger and a half of fluffy white head. Maintains a very thin layer of wispy froth that laces quite well.

Smells of tropical fruits. Mango, peach, mandarins and a little bready sweetness. Mouth wateringly good and both my wife and I can't get enough.

Taste is a fruity explosion. Mandarins, peaches, grapefruit zest, mild mango, floral honey, a hint of berries, some faint cracker and a slight tinge of rose wine. Virtually no alcohol presence. Very nice.

Slighy slick, medium light body with bubbly soft carbonation. Bittersweet, lingering floral and citrus finish.

A delicious and easy drinking showcase for the Nelson Sauvin hop. Fruity and hop forward with just enough malt to add a touch of sweetness and a little body. An excellent single hop IPA.

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Photo of surfcaster
5/5  rDev +13.9%
look: 5 | smell: 5 | taste: 5 | feel: 5 | overall: 5

My first 5 beer-cannot imagine anything better

A: beautiful golden cloudy beer with a creamy thick head that put a dense lace down the pint glass.

S: I could smell this one from across the bar. Just pungent pine and a floral aroma that is so unique that it is hard to describe it. Bright.

T: Just magic. Explodes on the tip of the tongue. Juicy and robust. Very hop forward but such a different flavor than any IPA I have had.

M. Perfect carbonation.

O. My favorite IPA to date. Beats HT all day long.

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Photo of Rifugium
4.14/5  rDev -5.7%
look: 4 | smell: 4.25 | taste: 4 | feel: 4.25 | overall: 4.25

Had this side-by-side with Mother Earth's Boo Koo, and I think I actually liked that one a little better.

Lacking an Alpine glass, I poured this one into a Deschutes teku. A slightly hazy liquid, orange-copper in color, topped with a finger of foamy white head; nice retention and lacing. In the nose, floral notes, some dank citrus, slightly composted rind, wet grass, some hints of toasted rye malt. The flavor was similar, oily citrus, with a zesty bitterness, grassy and floral, somewhat herbal, sweaty, some toasted rye bread, with a residual malt sweetness. Medium body, maybe even medium-full, but still retained a nice IPA crispness, which made it an easy drinker. Almost came off more like a DIPA than a regular IPA. Nice brew overall.

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Photo of DuckyD
4.49/5  rDev +2.3%
look: 4.5 | smell: 4.25 | taste: 4.75 | feel: 4 | overall: 4.5

Boldly spicy and hopped, just as it should be. It's a simple recipe w/ a fresh and small batch mentality, just as it should be. The rye is more of a perfect compliment but the Nelson is the star of the show, just as it should be. Stop by the small but mighty brewery when in SoCal, Scott is your man. I recommend tasting ALL the IPA's and and grabbing your favorite...OR ALL OF THEM! Great BBQ and music too.

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Photo of vitALEity
5/5  rDev +13.9%
look: 5 | smell: 5 | taste: 5 | feel: 5 | overall: 5

A - Hazy, light pale/straw with 2" of white head. Great retention (like a half inch of fluffy white snow) and great lacing.

S - Incredible. A fruit punch of gooseberry, lemon, sweet orange, pineapple, mango, guava, white grapes.

T - Tropical fruits, lemon, sauvignon blanc, wildflower honey.

M - Medium body, medium carbonation, layers of flavor hit you all over your tongue. Dry but never bitter in the finish.

O - So different then the typical "west coast IPA" and so welcomed. I could drink this all day.

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Photo of FitnessForBeer
4.55/5  rDev +3.6%
look: 4.5 | smell: 4.5 | taste: 4.5 | feel: 5 | overall: 4.5

A: pours a orange yellow color, cloudy, finger worth of head
S: lots of grapefruit, hoppy, sweet smelling
T: grapefuit, sweet malty backbone but balanced, can tell this is super hoppy
M: great
O: pretty awesome, goes down very easy and very balanced

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Photo of RachelZ
4.68/5  rDev +6.6%
look: 4.5 | smell: 4.5 | taste: 4.75 | feel: 4.75 | overall: 4.75

Overall this beer was awesome small hints of alcohol but not overpowering! It pours a cloudy golden orange with a white head. Lots of hops and pines in the aroma. The taste is fruity with hints of pineapple, peaches and citrus. The aftertaste is strong and dry.

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Photo of Zach136
4.6/5  rDev +4.8%
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.

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Photo of caskstrength
4.89/5  rDev +11.4%
look: 5 | smell: 4.75 | taste: 5 | feel: 5 | overall: 4.75

pours cloudy yellow with hazy flavor particles.

smells like earthy gapefriuit rinds

tastes like dirt mixed with citrus rinds, mandarins, and pine needles. If that doesnt sound delicious, look elsewhere for opinions on hoppy beer.

an awesome nelson sauvin beer, best i've had actually. Just so well constructed.

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Photo of beergrrrl2
3.41/5  rDev -22.3%
look: 2.75 | smell: 3 | taste: 3.75 | feel: 2.75 | overall: 3.75

I had this new Alpine Nelson that was contract brewed at Greenflash on tap. Nelson was probably my favorite beer and I've written beergasm reviews of it but this new collaboration needs to be tweaked. The beer was exceptionally cloudy with a chewy mouthfeel. It lost it 'brightness' and extraordinary deliciousness. While the Nelson hops were there, if I had this beer for the first time, I wouldn't order it again :( I hope they fix it.

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Photo of reebtaerG
4.6/5  rDev +4.8%
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.

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Photo of PSU_Mike
3.85/5  rDev -12.3%
look: 4 | smell: 4 | taste: 3.75 | feel: 4 | overall: 3.75

Bottle poured into an IPA glass

A - Pours a yellow, hazy, hefeweizen-like color with a white 2 finger head. It looks like pilsner malt to me.

S - Faint dankness and some grapefruit. No malt presence that I can detect. Maybe some tropical fruit notes as well.

T - Mildly piney. I was not expecting that from the nose. Again, some subtle citrus and tropical fruit notes. No dankness like I was expecting from the nose. White wine?

M - Very prickly and dry on the finish. A little bitterness lingers on the tongue.

O - Pretty mundane. Not offensive but not outstanding in any way.

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Photo of Ri0
4.49/5  rDev +2.3%
look: 4.25 | smell: 4.5 | taste: 4.5 | feel: 4.5 | overall: 4.5

poured 22oz bottle into snifter.

A - Hazy burnt orange with a 1.5 finger of white head. Good retention that leaves a thick collar and large spotty lacing.

S - Musty hops that are tropical and citrus. Malt comes through as sweet honey and there is a large rye aroma at the end.

T - Plenty of musty tropical hops with some bitter grapefruit and pine. Malt is clean and light with some honey sweetness. The finish is notes of rye and biter pine hops.

M - Medium bodied and dry. Good carbonation.

O - A terrific take on the IPA and one that I recommend.

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Photo of CapnTrav
4.38/5  rDev -0.2%
look: 5 | smell: 4.5 | taste: 4.25 | feel: 4 | overall: 4.5

poured from 22 oz bottle purchased a week ago from alpine brewery to a ballast point tulip

A: pours a great light gold, very clear and with very minimal head. dissipated almost fully within 5 minutes of pouring

S: SUPER PINE. heavy dank. very fresh and almost a cheddar cheese cracker after-smell.

T: very fresh hop taste directly up front. fades into an almost baked parmasean cheese flavor. i dont know if its just me since i know this is a high rated beer yet i havent even read any other official descriptive reviews for it. almost like liquid goldfish crackers. which in my book is A-OK!

M: minimal. its very smooth and potent but not very viscous or thick. goes down very easy and doesnt linger too too much.

O: great beer. really enjoyed it after hearing how good it was!

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Photo of koutkid41
4.51/5  rDev +2.7%
look: 4 | smell: 4.25 | taste: 4.75 | feel: 5 | overall: 4.25

L: Light pale and straw in color. Strong and this pillow like foamy head, lingers quite a bit as well. Slight haze.

S: Citrus and tropical upfront then the rye hits you with some faint black licorice and rubber notes. When it's warmer pine comes out and appears

T: Again citrus upfront with rye blending in nicely fading into a real nice pine.

M: Light and easy to drink. Really nice mouth-feel to his one.

O: Really nice beer, would love to have this all the time. One thing I notice about Alpine is its kinda like my homebrew, at the bottom has some hop bits in it lol.

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Photo of Keananmichael5
4.87/5  rDev +10.9%
look: 5 | smell: 4.75 | taste: 5 | feel: 4.75 | overall: 4.75

Amazing and unique rye ipa. cloudy orange /yellow look and a crisp and clean taste. This is my favorite easy to get ipa and I woul d make any drive to get it

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Photo of BoardwalkBock
4.6/5  rDev +4.8%
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.

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Photo of JohnParadee
4.53/5  rDev +3.2%
look: 4 | smell: 4.75 | taste: 4.5 | feel: 4.5 | overall: 4.5

Poured from bottle into chilled pint glass. Surprisingly light yellow/orange color (thought it might be more cloudy & orange, based on smell). Relatively thin fluffy white head, which dissipated somewhat quickly. Lots of tiny bubbles, and good/sticky/even lacing throughout the quaff. On the nose, strong pine dominates over grapefruit/orange citrus notes. There is a distinct dankiness to the nose, which becomes all the more prominent upon first sip. As the beer settles and warms, the beer becomes more hoppy/piney/dank and less floral/citrusy on the palette, which is fine by me (that's how I like them, although a little more balance would be preferred here). Mouthfeel is full and coating. Alcohol burn is subdued until final points of the finish. All in all, I liked this very much. A very good example of West Coast style (reminds me a little of Sucks in that regard). Duet is better, but Nelson is a close second. Nice work, Alpine!

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Photo of UAhobbes
5/5  rDev +13.9%
look: 5 | smell: 5 | taste: 5 | feel: 5 | overall: 5

Nelson, to me, is easily one of the best IPA's I've ever had. I'm a big hop head who loves hop-forward beers. Not only is this beer incredibly well balanced, its fruity characteristics give it that respectable nudge into the elites.

If something terribly wrong occurred where one could only choose one brewery to drink from... Alpine would be the one.

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Photo of jjdc
4.82/5  rDev +9.8%
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.

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Photo of pjkelley82
5/5  rDev +13.9%
look: 5 | smell: 5 | taste: 5 | feel: 5 | overall: 5

Review #400... and man a good one to review...

A- Beautiful . Hazy golden color. Nice head... great soapy lacing..

S- Simply put- the best hoppy beer I ever smelt... maybee it just tickled "my" fancy more than others..candied orange and mango, pineapple and guava. .. I can't even describe how damn good this beer smelled... there was something else in the smell that's hard to describe but simply when you smell it you smile... outstanding...

T-now my expectations are high and it did not disappoint....everything described In the smell is in the taste with a beautiful balancing showcase and nothing is too overwhelming but meshed together perfectly... bitterness and hops were present but again, nothing singled out another..

M-smooth and medium to light bodied with a great juicy aftertaste that begged you to keep sipping...

O- Best IPA out!...I swear by lunch (which is still world class imo):but damn you grze for getting me hooked on this beer...I drank it in a matter of 10 min. And that's pretty rare for me by myself.. but all I wanted was more... there is nothing left to say... you have to try this beer....

Edit: I have had this beer another two times since my review and all it did was prove how damn good this brew was and that my review is spot on. I've shared this beer with a few buddies and they agree that its a world class brew and in the top hoppy beers they have ever had. The general consensus was that it was too smooth and easy drinking (in a good way) and one could polish off 2 bottles before they knew it was done.

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Nelson from Alpine Beer Company
97 out of 100 based on 651 ratings.