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Nelson - Alpine Beer Company

Not Rated.
NelsonNelson

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

781 Reviews
THE BROS
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no score

(Send Samples)
Reviews: 781
Hads: 3,773
Avg: 4.38
pDev: 19.41%
Wants: 1,373
Gots: 572 | FT: 23
Brewed by:
Alpine Beer Company
California, United States | website

Style | ABV
American IPA | 7.00% 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 (48) | Events
Beer: Reviews & Ratings
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Reviews: 781 | Hads: 3,773
Photo of Brez07
4.07/5  rDev -7.1%
look: 4 | smell: 4.5 | taste: 4 | feel: 3.5 | overall: 4

22oz bottle split with Drazzamatazz and Heater

A: Slightly cloudy brownish orange. 1 finger fluffy white head upon initial pour. Decent lined lacing

S: Grapefruit. Pure, unadulterated grapefruit. A little bit of bready rye comes out as well. After allowing it to open, the grapefruit begins to fade and you get more rye

T: Grapefruit, but not as prevalent as the nose. Other citrus flavors, including orange and mango. Weird, but it almost tastes a little watered down. Just a little bit of hop bitterness

M: Medium bodied. Lighter carbonation, so overall a smooth beer. Light pine bitter aftertaste

D: When first cracked open, it smelled amazing. While it didn't live up to my lofty initial expectations, it was definitely a solid IPA. I would drink this beer often if it was available in my area

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Photo of seeswo
4.72/5  rDev +7.8%
look: 4.5 | smell: 5 | taste: 4.5 | feel: 4.5 | overall: 5

Pours a yellowish-golden color with a nice whitish head. The nose is intoxicating. A light pine is lifted by a delightful citrus array of grapefruit and orange. Wow. Delicious (I rarely give 5's for any category). The taste is really good as well. A light spicy bitterness, grassy with just a touch of pine and citrus. It brings the wood like the nose. Yum. The mouthfeel is medium with a medium light carbonation. I always have felt that I like Duet better, but this fresh batch of Nelson is fantastic. [EDIT: Had this beer like a million times since and this is one of my favorite all time beers]

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Photo of azdback
4.56/5  rDev +4.1%
look: 4.25 | smell: 4.5 | taste: 4.75 | feel: 4.25 | overall: 4.5

Poured into a Stone Imperial glass. A golden orange color. A bit cloudy and full of tiny carbonation bubbles. Head isn't that big (not a very aggressive pour, my fault) under one finger and bright white in color. Lace is pretty sticky and leaves a beautiful spotted pattern.

Smell is of amazing sweet and citrus hops. Pink grapefruit and pineapple. Some orange flavors also and a bit of pine resin.

Taste is a bit different then the nose. The hop bitterness is still there and has the flavors of sweet citrus, but there are earthy notes that taste of fresh cut grass. Quite nice.

Mouth is bright and refreshing. Not a bit thin but on the medium side. Not out of place for an IPA though.

Overall I must say how much I enjoyed this. Another Alpine brew that is hit out of the ball park. Thanks to Jeff for picking this one up for me on his last trip to San Diego.

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Photo of UnknownKoger
4.5/5  rDev +2.7%
look: 4.5 | smell: 4.5 | taste: 4.5 | feel: 4.5 | overall: 4.5

Very excited to try this. Poured from bottle into my Sierra Nevada pint glass. Smell is amazing. Strong, piney, grapefruity hop notes. In the background there is a lot of malt sweetness. Color is pale straw. Head quickly dissipates to a thin head. The taste is really interesting and unique. There's the sweetness but also a bit of grassiness in the hop notes. The rye really contributes to the unique flavor. Mouthfeel is medium bodied.

Overall it's very delightful. I would definitely buy it again.

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Photo of Kshock
4.3/5  rDev -1.8%
look: 4 | smell: 4 | taste: 4.5 | feel: 4 | overall: 4.5

Another San Diego gem....

A- Cloudy golden yellow color with a little head retention. Good sticky lacing on the glass.

S- Lots of citrus hop aroma with a spicy backbone from the rye. Smells like fresh tennis balls..in a good way. i had to put that because a friend mentioned it and now i cant get that out of my head.

T-- Great citrus hop flavors, spicy rye in the background. Really nice flavors, balanced nicely. Slightly dry on the back end.

M light -med body, drys out mildly on the backend.

O- Amazing beer, one of the best IPA's out there.

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Photo of Nashvillain
4.89/5  rDev +11.6%
look: 4 | smell: 5 | taste: 5 | feel: 4.5 | overall: 5

Had this once before (thanks to Gregshead) and got to try one that I had time to review again (thanks to Thegordianknot).

Yes. Just yes. Everything about this. Reading my review is pointless if it doesn't in some way aid you in getting this beer. Your new life mission is to get as much of this stuff as possible and drink it immediately. Job, kids, life? They pale in comparison to this brew. That being said, actual review below.

Pours a dark straw into the glass. Big, pillowy head sits atop, making escaping without a beerstache an impossible feat. This thing has a ton of floaties. I'm sure they're good for you.

Oh yeah, there's extensive lacing too. As for the smell, it's cranberries, potpurri (not the crappy WalMart version, imagine a collaboration between Martha Stewart and Yankee Candle Co), and pungent awesomeness characteristic of Nelson Sauvin

Taste is dank. Just filthy, but in the best way possible. Like a messy dog kiss, nasty but bright and friendly at the same time. Almost resin-like, but not over the top. Finish is a light alcohol warmth that wraps everything up. Mouthfeel is smooth as it ought to be.

Has great potential for a desert island beer.

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Photo of kayalla
4.42/5  rDev +0.9%
look: 4 | smell: 4.5 | taste: 4.5 | feel: 4 | overall: 4.5

Poured from a 22 oz bottle into a snifter. Hazy orange with a good white head. Aroma is floral hops with a lot of citrus fruits especially orange and grape fruit. The flavor is an explosion of hops but in great balance, not as sweet as the aroma seemed. Orange and grape fruit, maybe apple, peach. So nicely balanced, this is a stellar IPA and I always seek this out when they put out a new batch.

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Photo of FUNKPhD
4.7/5  rDev +7.3%
look: 4.5 | smell: 4.5 | taste: 5 | feel: 4.5 | overall: 4.5

I've been lucky enough to have this beer a few occasions, so I felt that it was time to review.

Pours out with a nice honey color, with the aroma of hops and citrus being noticed immediately. Gives a nice two finger head that sticks around for while before an appearance of descending. Hops are at the forefront, quickly followed by citrus, giving it a very satisfying grapefruit taste. Nelson leaves a nice extended stay tingle in the mouth, a very welcome guest.

Overall, this is a most excellent example of a double IPA done right. Unfortunately for me, its not readily available in my area, so feel blessed if it sits on your beer station's shelves.

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Photo of kungpao
4.75/5  rDev +8.4%
look: 4.5 | smell: 4.5 | taste: 5 | feel: 5 | overall: 4.5

This is a world class American made beer.

A- A nice dirty dark blonde and very clear beer, very unusual considering the style. This thing is alive, obviously bottle conditioned, yeast floaties aplenty. Poured semi aggressively into a pint glass. Pours an impressive eggshell color 3 finger pillowy head with tons of retention. The head is reminiscent of Duvel... I'm impressed.

S- Citrusy, fruity, piny dank hops. This beer smells great. Definitely up there with some of the best IPAs available in terms of fragrance. Earthy rye and clean yeast are hidden somewhere amongst the dank hops.

T- Awesome. Slight bittering hops up front, followed by a TON of piney/ fruity hop flavor. I'm surprised that the rye didn't get lost amongst the hops but it shines threw at the end to help add to complexity and balance the lack of malts.

M- Amongst the best I've ever had. Chewy, thick, simply luxurious. A little bit more carbonation than I was expecting but it works well. This is probably the most memorable and unique quality of the beer, which is saying alot.

O- Excellent beer.

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Photo of charliedvrs
4.62/5  rDev +5.5%
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.

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Photo of jale
4.5/5  rDev +2.7%
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.

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Photo of CuttDeez
4.42/5  rDev +0.9%
look: 4 | smell: 4.5 | taste: 4.5 | feel: 4 | overall: 4.5

Bomber into a pint glass

A - A golden burnt orange body that is clear and slightly bubbly with a medium sized white head.

S - Tons of awesome citrus and tropic notes that are big and bold but an unmistakable spice and rye and grassy earthen aroma as well. This not only brings in a nice complexity but gives the beer a natural rustic feel.

T & M & D - Just what you would expect from Alpine in terms of IPA and Rye. The beer opens with a citrus juicy hop bomb and then the spice and chew of the rye comes in on the back end without completely overwhelming the front end. Fantastic. The beer is medium bodied and is bold on the palate with the good intensity of the hops and rye spices.

O - Another great offering from Alpine. Rye makes an interesting addition to the IPA as it fully embrasses a spicy flavor profile and does not try to ease up on the palate at all.

-Cheers

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Photo of arukasa
4.32/5  rDev -1.4%
look: 4.5 | smell: 5 | taste: 4 | feel: 4.5 | overall: 4

A light amber, golden color with a thick, persistent head that leaves significant lace. Quite floral nose with light hops. Grapefruit nose becomes more prominent as the beer warms up.

There is a rye bite and bitterness that is amplified by the grapefruit nose. Light hop bitterness. This combination gives an almost salty "zing" that clears the palate. Good carbonation, smooth mouthfeel with a bitter salt/rye kick.

Overall, this is a great second or third beer that will cleanse your palate for what's next.

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Photo of sendsilk
4.74/5  rDev +8.2%
look: 4 | smell: 5 | taste: 5 | feel: 4 | overall: 4.5

This is the third time I have been fortunate enough to have this beer. Thanks EHammond and Airfoil for this OUTSTANDING and one of my top 3 favorite IPA's.

A- Light straw, kind of cloudy, effervescent clarity on... the....

Oh the hell with this. This beer is amazing. Such a wonderful citrus hop aroma and flavor, so clean, so non-piney, so refreshing. Seriously, it's taking me about 6 minutes to almost nail this whole bomber on a 95 degree day. I have to force myself to slow down to appreciate it because it tastes SOOOO good but is so amazingly easy to drink.

Find it, trade for it, try it, you won't be sorry. Excellence in a bottle. Thanks Alpine!

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Photo of Janderson91
4.42/5  rDev +0.9%
look: 4 | smell: 4.5 | taste: 4.5 | feel: 4 | overall: 4.5

Another one from dmsohyea, thanks Ian! This one was picked up at the time of the Expo release and enjoyed on 08/11/11.

A - Lighter color than expected. Pale straw yellow color. Clear with a one finger white head that leaves great looking lacing.

S - That signature fruity hop aroma that seems to come from all Alpine beers which I love. Big grapefruit and mango aromas with some sugary sweet malt behind it.

T - Similar to the nose, great stuff. Grapefruit up front and then comes some sweet malts and some rye spiciness. Finishes with a great fruity hop presence that lingers for a while.

M - Mouthfeel is good. Pretty light bodied with lively carbonation.

O - Overall, this is another great one from Alpine. Consistently making some of the best IPAs around.

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Photo of jm1229
4.49/5  rDev +2.5%
look: 4 | smell: 5 | taste: 4.5 | feel: 3.5 | overall: 4.5

Bomber served on 8/6/11 into my Alpine pint glass. Picked this up from the brewery about a week ago.

A- Clear, golden orange with pale white head. Slowly dissipates into sticky lacing on the sides of the glass. Looks really refreshing.

S- It's not even necessary to bring the glass up to my nose; I can smell this beer from a mile away and it smells absolutely amazing. So much fruit in this, it's like a Hawaiian buffet. Pineapple. Mango. Pine. Perhaps my favorite smelling single IPA of all time.

T- Follows the nose. Pineapple, mango, and pine. It's so juicy and delicious. Great bitter aftertaste. If it was socially acceptable (and perhaps a little cheaper), I would drink this with every breakfast. It's like juice! Crazy...

M- Maybe the one downfall of the beer is how drinkable it is. Since it's just a little thin, you want to constantly pour this down without one hesitation. Then again, carbonation is great, but if this was just a little stronger (tastes like there's NO alcohol in this), it could be perfection.

O- Alpine is one of my favorite breweries and Nelson is probably my favorite offering from them. This is a superb IPA and if you can find it, buy it. You will not be disappointed.

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Photo of draheim
4.47/5  rDev +2.1%
look: 4 | smell: 4.5 | taste: 4.5 | feel: 4.5 | overall: 4.5

22oz bottle (thanks sleepyhead!) poured into a tulip. Hazy straw color with a 1-finger white head, nice sticky lacing.

Aroma is a burst of bright grapefruit and juicy, mouth-watering orange. I could smell this all day long.

Taste follows nose: grapefruit, pineapple. This is a citrus bomb if I've ever had one. Simply delicious. And deliciously simple. Great, succulent mouthfeel too with a nice crisp finish.

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Photo of Alieniloquium
4.38/5  rDev 0%
look: 4.5 | smell: 4 | taste: 4.5 | feel: 4.5 | overall: 4.5

22 oz. bottle poured into a tulip.

Appearance - Pale orange body that is crystal clear. All Alpine IPAs seem to be ridiculously clear. Great white head with beautiful pillowy lace. All Alpine beers look sexy, too.

Smell - Grapefruit hops, but they're not all that dominant. The rye makes it smell piney and a little grassy. I like it, even though I'm neither a fan of pine hops nor rye.

Taste - It has a great hop flavor up front with a nice rye taste as a backbone. It's super clean. Distinct crisp flavors. Again, rye isn't my favorite, but this is done so well I have to give credit. Nice bitterness in the end that I don't really get from other Alpine IPAs.

Mouthfeel - Perfect drinking IPA. Goes down so well. Light bodied, but enough to keep the flavors around.

Overall - It's just such a perfectly executed beer without the flavors I'm looking for. It's tough to rate, because it manages to make me enjoy flavors I don't normally enjoy. Well done, Alpine.

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Photo of BeerThursdays
4.42/5  rDev +0.9%
look: 4 | smell: 4.5 | taste: 4.5 | feel: 4 | overall: 4.5

A - Poured from the bottle into a Smuttynose snifter, this is burnt orange with a two finger white head. Very nice, clean looking beer.

S - Piney hops, some sweetness. Lemon and grapefruit.

T - Out of this world. One of the best. Sweet and juicy hops, decent malty backbone, but not over powering. Bitterness on the tongue.

M - Good feel, just what you would expect. Not over carbed, no alcohol. Excellent.

O - Great beer. Pretty easy to get in a trade, so it ranks very highly. Love the taste, look and smell of this beer.

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Photo of comfortablynumb1
4.49/5  rDev +2.5%
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...

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Photo of amphion1065
3.72/5  rDev -15.1%
look: 3.5 | smell: 4 | taste: 4 | feel: 2.5 | overall: 3.5

Thanks for the shot at this one Brian - I've been making quick work of that box! 22 oz. bottle into a tulip.

Pour is pale, straw yellow. It reminds me of hay, with some orange highlights. The head is a touch small even with a vigorous pour, but there's some nice lacing around the glass.

I can detect tangerines immediately in the nose. There's a very classic citrus-forward hop profile in the aroma. I swear I can swell hay as well, though that may just be psychomatic. I'm picking up on a little bit of grass as well. This just smells fresh.

Taste follows closely on the aroma. I get lemons and mangoes up front, with a slight citric burn in the back end. Actually, it really reminds me of lemon or orange juice. There's a bitter, astringent finish, with a touch of fruity sweetness for balance.

It's a tad overcarbonated, which only serves to amplify that bubbly, citric burn in the taste. Quite drinkable, but if the carbonation were toned down the mouthfeel would really benefit.

More than fine, just not exceptional. Ultimately, I'd call it a little dull.

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Photo of inlimbo77
4.5/5  rDev +2.7%
look: 4.5 | smell: 4.5 | taste: 4.5 | feel: 4.5 | overall: 4.5

22oz bomber bottle poured into DFH signature glass. No bottle date present, do any Alpine?

A: Pours a deep rusty orange color. Cloudy. Barely any head on this, 1/4 finger if that. Some lacing. Aggressive spin gives BRIGHT white head with tiny bubbles.

S: Nose is amazing. Tons of grapefruit! But also smells like champagne or dry white wine. Almost like sparkling cider or something non-alcoholic I've had in the past.

T: It's so clean. Really sparkling wine-ish. Crisp. The Nelson hops are amazing. Nice crisp finish. Tip of tongue hop bite, mild malt middle tongue, and clean bite to close. Really really like this one!

M: Light to medium bodied. Some chew, but not tons.

O: Another amazing brew from Alpine. Thinks this beats the Duet out as my personal favorite currently. Can't wait for the Expo.

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Photo of andrewinski1
3.53/5  rDev -19.4%
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!

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Photo of Bendurgin
3.53/5  rDev -19.4%
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.

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Photo of beerguru14
4.32/5  rDev -1.4%
look: 4 | smell: 4.5 | taste: 4.5 | feel: 4 | overall: 4

Pour, Color, & Aroma:
I have the plea­sure of vis­it­ing the hills of San Diego many times a year due to hav­ing sev­eral of my wife’s fam­ily mem­bers liv­ing there. It just so hap­pens there is a gem of a brew­ery down the street called Alpine Beer Com­pany. They quickly became a place I made sure to visit any­time I was near. There­fore, Alpine being my favorite brew­ing com­pany, I wanted to review one of my go to sea­sonal brews.

This beer pours a nice cop­per gold with a slight hazi­ness. The head was a beau­ti­ful white color. Head retained itself for sev­eral min­utes leav­ing a nice lac­ing along the glass. The rye is promi­nent dur­ing the ini­tial sniff, fol­lowed by cit­rus, mostly a nice orange and grape­fruit aroma. There were also hints of caramel, bis­cuits, a bit of mango, a slight pear and another aroma that was hard to put my fin­ger on that could have been some­thing sim­i­lar to a cream/vanilla ice cream.



Taste:
This beer has a great fla­vor. There is a great hop pres­ence with a nice rye back­bone. The hops added a hand­some zesty grape­fruit to the already fla­vor­ful grain bill. Can’t imag­ine a rye beer that is more bal­anced than this. A hint of grape, orange and an earthy fla­vor slowly make its way up the palate. The malts are a lit­tle more dif­fi­cult to iden­tify only due to the other fla­vor pro­files that are right up front, but there was a faint caramel and bready flavor.



Fin­ish & Body:
The beer was light as well as very dry. The alco­hol gave me a slight warmth going down, and even at 7%, this beer was smooth! The beer could eas­ily be con­sumed due to its light body and very smooth finish.



Final Thoughts:
This is a great exam­ple of what a bal­anced rye beer should be. The brew­ers cer­tainly choose the best hops to com­pli­ment the rye used in the grain bill. The com­plex­ity of the beer would make this a dif­fi­cult beer for a new comer to the beer scene. If you are ever in the San Diego area, do your­self a favor and look these guys up! Prost!

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Nelson from Alpine Beer Company
97 out of 100 based on 781 ratings.