Nelson | Alpine Beer Company

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Brewed by:
Alpine Beer Company
California, United States | website

Style: American IPA

Alcohol by volume (ABV): 7.00%

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

Added by OStrungT on 08-11-2006

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Reviews: 812 | Ratings: 3,935
Photo of SaisonRichBiere
4.33/5  rDev -1.1%
look: 4 | smell: 4.75 | taste: 4.25 | feel: 4 | overall: 4.25

Poured from a Green Flash bottle.

Pours bright light orange with a fizzy head that rises, but subsides. Smell is peppery, grassy, dry grapefruit. Big Nelson Sauvin nose. Taste is spicy rye with zesty dry grapefruit. Finishes smooth. Fizzy texture, but dense enough to be pretty slick in the mouth. Great spicy IPA, great use of NS hops.

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Photo of ColdOneKev
4.39/5  rDev +0.2%
look: 4 | smell: 4.25 | taste: 4.5 | feel: 4.25 | overall: 4.5

A - Hazy gold body. Large white head. Moderate lacing.
S - Hop forward, citrus, light spice, maybe from the rye or hops.
T - Excellent hop juice. Balancing malt backbone.
M - Medium body, medium card.
O - An excellent beer. My first Alpine brew and I can only hope the rest are as good.

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Photo of ONUMello
4.3/5  rDev -1.8%
look: 4 | smell: 4.5 | taste: 4.25 | feel: 4.25 | overall: 4.25

Poured from a growler into an IPA glass
A: Hazy light orange with a two-finger head that slowly settles
S: Lots of grapefruit along with rye and coriander
T: Matches the nose- grapefruit, rye, earth and spice
M: Medium-bodied, crisp, bitter
O: A very solid IPA; the spicy notes the rye adds up the amount of complexity making it quite tasty

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Photo of silverblaze540
4.06/5  rDev -7.3%
look: 4.5 | smell: 4 | taste: 4 | feel: 4.25 | overall: 4

A-Orange, hazy, and not much visible carbonation. Head dissipates quickly.

S - Piney with an almost onion/garlic hint.

T - Aggressive woody, green pine bitterness with a mild alcohol taste.

M - Soft and still. Finish is short.

O - Definitely fits the profile of an IPA, and a good one at that.

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Photo of Weisenbeer
4.29/5  rDev -2.1%
look: 4.25 | smell: 4 | taste: 4.5 | feel: 4.25 | overall: 4.25

This an outstanding rye IPA. Nice and hoppy and yummy. This is a top tier selection and I will actively seek out this brewer again. Hard to find locally here in Ohio.

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Photo of smcolw
3.33/5  rDev -24%
look: 3.75 | smell: 3.75 | taste: 3 | feel: 3.5 | overall: 3.25

Hazy gold color. Moderate bar poured head, which leaves streaks and spots on the glass.

Strong, nearly harsh, prickly grapefruit to the nose.

Equally extreme on the tongue...think sucking a hop pellet. The bitterness completely overwhelms the palate creating a dry, biting swallow and long, peppery aftertaste. The body is neutral with a corresponding carbonation level.

Imagine a horror film that features 90 minutes of violence in a 92 minute film. This a bit like that. If you are into this sort of thing, you'll love it. Otherwise, try this to get a sense of a purely hoppy, extreme beer.

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Photo of ryan1788a5
4.46/5  rDev +1.8%
look: 4.25 | smell: 4.5 | taste: 4.5 | feel: 4.25 | overall: 4.5

22oz bottle poured into a globe.

A: Brassy golden color with a deep haze. Creamy white head retains well and leaves some webby lacing.

S: White grapefruit, mandarin orange, pineapple, star fruit, mild vinous white wine notes. Juicy as hell. Light whiffs of grass. Soft earthy rye and dry crackers malt.

T: Bite of grapefruit and grapefruit rind up front. Pineapple and star fruit. Tangerine juice. Mildly grassy. Sauvignon blanc. Stiff hop bitterness builds to impressive heights and is enhanced by the soft earthy and bitter rye flavors. Dry and crackery malt too. Bitter grapefruit and tropical fruit juice finish.

M: Medium-light body. Soft and creamy and a little airy/foamy. Good dose of hop astringency. Aggressively carbonated for a crisp bite.

O: The bone dry malt base adds some nice spicy rye flavor and really lets the hops shine. Excellent.

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Photo of wdberkley
3.63/5  rDev -17.1%
look: 4.5 | smell: 4 | taste: 3 | feel: 4 | overall: 4

I'm hoping I just got a bad bottle. It looked gorgeous in the glass, smelled like I was in for an awesome hop bomb, and then I tasted it and it was nothing but burnt malt. No citrus, no hops. I was totally let down. Will seek out again and revise my review if the second go around is better. (should be noted it was in a green flash bottle)

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Photo of tsmith1nu
4.22/5  rDev -3.7%
look: 4.5 | smell: 3.75 | taste: 4.25 | feel: 4.5 | overall: 4.5

I am, generally speaking, a good person. I don't liter, I treat my fellow man with respect and dignity, I call my parents regularly. But sometimes I say to myself "If I became a ruthless dictator I could make the folks at Alpine open a brewery in my backyard." I have been lucky enough to stage a few of their beers here in North Carolina and Nelson is the third of their beers that I have tried and each one has been extremely good.
Do not pass this beer up.

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Photo of morimech
3.83/5  rDev -12.6%
look: 4.25 | smell: 4.25 | taste: 3.5 | feel: 4 | overall: 3.75

Best by 04/20/16, Kudos for putting an easy to find date on the label.

Pale golden color with two fingers of head that had good retention before settling to a thick cap. Heavy lacing coats the glass. Dank aroma with notes of tropical fruit and grapes. No sign of the malt. Very much one dimensional in flavor. Dank and tropical with notes of stone fruit. Malt serves no purpose other than being a hop delivery device and no sign of rye and no attempt has been made to add any sweetness. Deceptively light body with somewhat lively carbonation gives the impression of a smaller beer.

A hophead's type of beer. It features the Nelson Sauvin hop in an excellent fashion. An old school type of West Coast IPA that perhaps has been surpassed by more complex style of IPA.

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Photo of Kendo
3.85/5  rDev -12.1%
look: 4.25 | smell: 3.5 | taste: 4 | feel: 4 | overall: 3.75

A: Poured from the (Green Flash) bomber into a Piraat tulip/snifter-type glass. Body is clear golden yellow with a half-finger white head on top. Good lacing.

S: Odd nose. I get cat pee and white wine, with a touch of rye. It doesn't really seem to all come together, however, and frankly, it's not all that pleasant.

T: Lots of tropical fruity hops, along with that cat pee and white wine sensation again. Spicy rye noted towards the back end. Lingering lemony bitterness competing with the white wine taste and a touch of pine finishes it off. Heat from the 7% ABV is felt in the belly but not noted on the palate.

M: Medium in heft, with a slight oiliness to the feel. Carbonation is muted.

O: Not really impressed with this one - I think the hop profile just isn't in my "wheelhouse" (I tend towards the C-hops and what I guess are now the "traditional" American Pale Ales' and IPAs' flavor profiles.) Disappointed given the reputation of this one - and my excitement over finally getting to try it now that Green Flash is distributing the Alpine beers. Ah well, so it goes.

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Photo of TheSixthRing
4.1/5  rDev -6.4%
look: 4 | smell: 4 | taste: 4.25 | feel: 4 | overall: 4

Best by date of April 16th, 2016

Appearance - Pours a slightly hazy, pale golden yellow with a white, finger width head. Good retention, then dissipates to to a thin, broken layer of surface suds. Not much lace, save a few spots around the glass.

Smell - Hoppy with almost no malt in the aroma to speak of. Tropical notes of pineapple and mango stick out over the citrus and pine. Distant spice.

Taste - Mango is the predominant flavor here, while pineapple, citrus and pine follow up to add complimentary character. Maybe a touch of green banana? Rye spice kicks in near the finish, adding black pepper bite that rides out with moderate citrus pith bitterness.

Mouthfeel - On the plus side of medium with lightly bitey carbonation. Almost velvety texture on the swallow with a dry finish.

Overall - Pretty delicious hop profile, but the lack of balance is making it hard to finish this bottle. A bit of malt would go a long way to help break up the sharp, acidic hop attack that this beast displays. That I gave it the score I did is a testament to the amazing hop profile, but buyer beware that it is a double-edged sword.

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Photo of thegodfather2701
4.38/5  rDev 0%
look: 4.25 | smell: 4.25 | taste: 4.5 | feel: 4.5 | overall: 4.25

A-pours a straw yellow with a dense bright white head that lasts forever and leaves some lacing

S-tropical fruits and a slight hint of pine when first poured-as it opens the nose becomes more dank

T-tropical with just maybe the slightest hint of pine in the end-very hoppy and bitter for a standard IPA. A little dank as it opens and a slight malt backbone. There is a slight white wine characteristic to it. It is not incredibly complex just a hoppy west coast style IPA. I didn't notice the rye as much as I had hoped.

M-Pretty thick, but has a good level of carbonation

D-This is a pretty big IPA given the bitterness and alcohol content for the style. I couldn't drink more than this one bomber in a sitting.

Overall, this i is a very good beer. I don't know if I would say it is great, but it is a classic representation of the west coast style. I am glad I was able to try it, but I do not see myself buying a bomber again because I can get IPAs I enjoy as much, if not more, for a better price. Truly a must try for lovers of the style.

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Photo of BltByKrmn
4.61/5  rDev +5.3%
look: 4.5 | smell: 4.75 | taste: 4.5 | feel: 4.5 | overall: 4.75

Green Flash bottle with a best by 4/20/16 into a snifter.

If GF messed Nelson up, I can't fathom what the Alpine version is like. This is pretty close to a perfect west coast IPA.

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Photo of WellRested518
4.19/5  rDev -4.3%
look: 4.25 | smell: 4.5 | taste: 4 | feel: 4 | overall: 4.25

L- Hazy, unfiltered golden-yellow with hints of orange. A nice crown of head lasts for awhile showing frothy carb & steady lace.

S- The crowning achievement here. Big lemon, Passionfruit, Papaya, grapefruit, guava, pine, & a touch of rye. Reminiscent of white wine... even getting "catty" as it warms bit. Beautiful showcase of Nelson.

T-M-Not as show stopping as the aroma, but still quite exquisite. Here I get more orange pith, tropical candies, mango, and hints of rye than in the nose. The grapefruit & pine bitterness stays full throughout with a dry finish. A medium to light carbonation produces a soft & juicy mouthfeel that really lets the hop shine.

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

Green Flash bottle best by 21 Mar 2016

A: poured into an IPA glass to a hazed light orange with a dense one finger tan head that retains well and leaves great lacing
S: smells extremely dank with notes of resinous hops with some citrusy notes and rye spice with some malt sweetness
T: taste is grapefruit and resinous pine with some light tropical fruit and grapefruit rind with some light caramel sweetness and spicy rye. Swallow is a nice blast of oily citrusy hops and grapefruit juice with some lingering spice
M: medium in body with soft and slightly prickly carbonation and a huge oily fiinish from the hops
O: Dank and resinous West Coast goodness in a bottle. Probably a benchmark for the style and easily one of the best I've ever had. If you see this and like IPAs you need to buy it.

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Photo of Simont
4.4/5  rDev +0.5%
look: 3.5 | smell: 4 | taste: 4.75 | feel: 4.25 | overall: 4.5

Pale straw color, slightly off white head dropped quickly. Aroma is predominantly melon and that funky wine-like/ gooseberry fruitiness that Nelson brings. Slight honey malt and pepper-like rye on nose. Flavor is that same melon/ white wine fruit, but amplified. Passion fruit and pithy grapefruit also come through. Hop bitterness is on high side but I dig it. Malt character is clean, dry and a peppery rye is very noticeable. It works well here and adds depth to the hop bomb. Very tasty.

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Photo of Tsar_Riga
4.31/5  rDev -1.6%
look: 4.25 | smell: 4.5 | taste: 4.25 | feel: 4.25 | overall: 4.25

A - Hazy golden body, not much light through, with a full white head and lots of lacing.

S - A nose full of fruit, heavy on grapefruit flesh and pith, mango and lemon, and a touch of spice.

T - Strongly bitter flavor, with pith first, and a spicy malt hit from the rye, with flavors cycling out to the close.

M - Moderate carbonation, bright feel, mild drying on the close.

O - Glad I had a chance to pick up a growler from Jungle Jim's. It is a solid IPA, flavorful and drinkable. Quite bitter, but not overly so.

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Photo of Trevor11
4.5/5  rDev +2.7%
look: 4.5 | smell: 4.5 | taste: 4.5 | feel: 4.5 | overall: 4.5

slightly over hopped, and overrated. Alpine is a nano-brewery and uses bottles from green flash to increase its distribution which is pretty cool. I was able to score some at Whole Foods in River Forest, which has developed an impressive beer selection.

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Photo of thebeers
4.17/5  rDev -4.8%
look: 4 | smell: 4.5 | taste: 4 | feel: 4 | overall: 4.25

Exceptionally clear orange-straw color with a finger-and-a-half of white head and heavy lacing. Subtle floral aroma, with orange, peach, grapefruit and lemon peel in the background, definitely reminiscent of white wine, as advertised. The fruit carries over to the taste, perhaps more than balanced out by a stronger-than-expected hop bitterness and clear rye character in the malt. Medium bodied, slightly creamy with good carbonation. Very glad to have tried this one.

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Photo of Cobrito
4.82/5  rDev +10%
look: 4.75 | smell: 4.5 | taste: 5 | feel: 5 | overall: 4.75

Again, of the four Alpine beers to recently hit Atlanta thanks to the Green Flash relationship, I like this and Hoppy Birthday the best.

This is a phenomenal brew with some of the most beautifully integrated contrasting flavors you will ever experience. As some others have said, it does have an almost wine/champagne quality to it in addition to just being a West Coast IPA hophead's delight. Love it!

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Photo of myrixis
3.78/5  rDev -13.7%
look: 3.75 | smell: 3.25 | taste: 3.75 | feel: 4.25 | overall: 4.25

Appearance is a deep golden with a nice head
Smells of champagne almost quite vinous some muskiness too
Taste has a nice flavor real piney with a bitterness that coats the tongue
Overall it may be a bit too bitter for some who don't like the strong bitterness but it really had a nice initial flavor aside from the lingering bitterness

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Photo of scotorum
4.29/5  rDev -2.1%
look: 4 | smell: 4.25 | taste: 4.25 | feel: 4.75 | overall: 4.25


Poured from the 22 oz. bottle into a Tree House stemmed tulip.

a: Clear gold with a finger thick white head which receded to even surface foam and dense lacing

s: Strong pine resin with petroleum notes

t: Follows the nose with considerable hop bite over a medium bready malt base. Bitterness lingers on the dry finish

m: Medium plus, very good body and smooth oily texture. Good carbonation tingle.

o: A powerfully flavorful IPA in the definite West Coast vein. Can see why it's rated higher than Hoppy Birthday or Duet on BA.

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Photo of tbeckett
4.54/5  rDev +3.7%
look: 4.25 | smell: 4.5 | taste: 4.5 | feel: 4.5 | overall: 4.75

Green Flash bottle. BB April 2016.

A - Bright. Golden or light golden. Two finger white head. Some particulate in the body. Minimal carbonation. Rings of lace and a film of retention.

S - Spice, fruit, rye note is there in a spicy malt note, lot's of nice zippy hop. Huge Nelson Sauvin note.

T - The rye and fruity note balance so nicely. Nelson character comes in so well and shines. Big hop and malt blows.

M - Nice carbonation, medium body and a spicy, fruity finish with a good but not overpowering bitterness.

O/D - Lovely stuff. So subtle but so complex as well. The spice and fruit work so well together. Excellent and drinkable for the ABV. I wasn't expecting a ton from this, but this was very impressive. Awesome.

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Photo of trevorpost
3.39/5  rDev -22.6%
look: 4.5 | smell: 3.5 | taste: 3.25 | feel: 3.25 | overall: 3.25

Tastes like the syrupy mess than many west coast ipas are in Massachusetts. Really disappointing. Looks like a great modern ipa, byt tastes like sweet oxidized ipa. And this is on draft. I'm sure it's great fresh but I have no faith that I order is fresh now. Ugh.

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Nelson from Alpine Beer Company
97 out of 100 based on 812 ratings.