1. The wait is over! Download the BeerAdvocate app on iTunes or Google Play now.
  2. Get 12 issues / year of BeerAdvocate magazine for only $9.99!

Nelson - Alpine Beer Company

Not Rated.
NelsonNelson

Displayed for educational use only; do not reuse.
BA SCORE
99
world-class

2,040 Ratings
THE BROS
-
no score

(send 'em beer!)
Ratings: 2,040
Reviews: 561
rAvg: 4.47
pDev: 8.72%
Wants: 1,185
Gots: 172 | FT: 13
Brewed by:
Alpine Beer Company visit their website
California, United States

Style | ABV
American IPA |  7.10% ABV

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

(Beer added by: rayjay on 08-14-2006)
View: Beers (46) |  Events
Beer: Ratings & Reviews
Sort by:  Latest | High | Low | Top Raters
Ratings: 2,040 | Reviews: 561 | Display Reviews Only:
Photo of akorsak
akorsak

Pennsylvania

4.53/5  rDev +1.3%
look: 4 | smell: 5 | taste: 4.5 | feel: 4 | overall: 4.5

Thanks to Deuane for sharing a growler.

A: The IPA is a golden yellow color, radiant while retaining a hazy complexion. I don't have any notes on the head, so it wasn't that memorable. One of the palest rye beers I've seen.

S: Heaven in a glass. The Nelson Sauvin hops are lemony, sharp and and sweet. Surprisingly, they aren't overwhelming, allowing rye bread to share the stage. I can't spend enough time on the aroma, full and intoxicating. The hops are damn-near perfect.

T: The rye is most flavorful at the tail end of each sip, expressing a spicy bread flavor that is restrained. It's there but not in your face. Prior to the rye, the Nelson Sauvin hops run wild, all lemony citrus and herbal. Surprisingly, the hops aren't overdone in the ale. Rather than dominate, they create a moderate flavor burst that showcases then steps aside. That allows the nuance to be more fully enjoyed. Bitterness following the rye accentuates more herbal lemon. A great sipping ale.

M: Balance is the key to this IPA. The hops, while plenty flavorful, don't scorch the palate. The rye is a nice accompaniment.

D: A top notch IPA. The Nelson Sauvin hop should be used in more beers (wishful thinking). A stunning nose and solid body. More, many more, please.

Serving type: growler

04-04-2010 19:47:33 | More by akorsak
Photo of orangesol
orangesol

Pennsylvania

4.25/5  rDev -4.9%

02-20-2014 05:33:34 | More by orangesol
Photo of stakem
stakem

Pennsylvania

4.13/5  rDev -7.6%
look: 4.5 | smell: 4.5 | taste: 4 | feel: 4 | overall: 4

Thanks to BdubleEdubleRUN for the trade on this one. I had a sample of this brew for the first time on Saturday care of Deuane and figured I better pop my bottle open soon to take this in and throw down a proper review.

Poured from a bomber into a shaped pint glass, this brew appears a clear light copper color with slightly more than a finger of white froth for a head. Bubbles rise through suspension supporting the uneven pillow-like cap. Very solid retention on this brews cap and a wall of lace sticks to the glass.

The aroma of this brew is a unique mixture of tangerine meets canned clementines... (I can't take credit for the canned clementine comment thats my wifes and she has to be right because she is pregnant and supposedly preggers have a higher awareness of the senses. Rrrrright...) But ok, she is on to something, this brew smells pretty much like a tangerine went on a weekend long bender with a bunch of wine giving it quite a vinous aspect. Little bit of grass, little bit of herbs, whole lot of goodness going on in this brew's nose.

The taste includes a flavor of oranges meets mango with a seemingly persistent residual sweetness that fades into lasting herbal bitterness. The balanace of sweetness verse bitterness is spot on for my taste, I really like this brew. A flavor of herbs, somewhat catty lasts inside the mouth after each sip and brings forth the first indication of the 7% abv.

The body on this ipa is pushing full, it is a little on the heavier side of medium bodied and is met with a modest amount of carbonation that keeps the bubbles lively inside the mouth and prickly on the tongue. The abv is present with a light fruited aspect but really brings in a solid amount of warmth down the back of the throat for 7%. All in all a very solid, enjoyable brew. Certainly worth checking out. Thanks again Brett for the trade!

Serving type: bottle

04-05-2011 01:46:24 | More by stakem
Photo of InspectorBob
InspectorBob

New Jersey

4.5/5  rDev +0.7%

05-20-2013 20:06:27 | More by InspectorBob
Photo of dbrauneis
dbrauneis

North Carolina

4.55/5  rDev +1.8%
look: 4.5 | smell: 5 | taste: 4.5 | feel: 4 | overall: 4.5

Bottle share in Hoboken, NJ.

A: Pours a slightly hazy golden orange in color with some very light visible carbonation. This beer has a finger tall light beige head that reduces to a condensed thick cap over the entire surface of the beer. Significant lacing is observed.

S: What a great hop aroma - lots of citrus/grapefruit and tropical/pineapple. This is a heck of a wonderful smelling beer.

T: This has a really nice flavor, there is a bit of hop bitterness bite but it is not overpowering. I love the flavors from the hops, the tropical/pineapple and the citrus/grapefruit. There is a very light rye spice as well.

M: Medium to full bodied with moderate amounts of carbonation. Slightly creamy.

O: This is a really great beer and one that I thoroughly enjoyed. I would like to have more than one of these at a sitting though I am not sure this is really sessionable. Definitely one I would like to have another time.

Serving type: bottle

04-16-2012 00:11:53 | More by dbrauneis
Photo of Georgiabeer
Georgiabeer

Georgia

4.63/5  rDev +3.6%
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.

Serving type: on-tap

09-20-2009 22:09:04 | More by Georgiabeer
Photo of DoubleJ
DoubleJ

California

4.7/5  rDev +5.1%
look: 3 | smell: 4.5 | taste: 5 | feel: 4 | overall: 5

Alpine Beer on draft, now I know I'm not in Orange County anymore. On-tap at Hamilton's Tavern, on to the beer.

Poured with almost no head on top, color is a lighter shade of orange. But this beer is not about the look, it's about the taste. But first, the aroma. It's like a juicy passionfruit hit you in the nose, along with assorted melons. And it tastes even better. It's not an "in your face" type of IPA. In fact, it's rather relaxed as it grabs the senses of your palate. Genereous amounts of passionfruit, mangoes, and melons play together to create a beer doesn't go bitter, weigh you down, or smack your face with boooze. A little spice from the rye keeps things rolling.

Alpine has done a 180 on me. I didn't have fun with Duet IPA, but Nelson could be my new favorite "single" IPA. In fact, I liked it so much, I did two pints of it, something I rarely do with the same beer at a place with so many great options. Even my friend who doesn't like hoppy beer wanted a pint of his own. Get this without hesitation.

Serving type: on-tap

05-06-2010 02:23:45 | More by DoubleJ
Photo of Wasatch
Wasatch

Utah

4/5  rDev -10.5%
look: 4 | smell: 4 | taste: 4 | feel: 4 | overall: 4

Thanks goes out to pokesbeerdude for this brew.

22oz. Bomber

Pours a nice slighlty hazy golden yellow color, nice carbonation, HUGE thick creamy/foamy white head, with lots of thick creamy/foamy sticky lacing left behind. The nose is hoppy, with a nice touch of malts, citrusy, with some slight pine notes. The taste is sweet, hoppy, malty, with some citrus/pine notes. Medium body. Drinkable, a pretty tasty IPA. Glad to have had a chance to try it.

Serving type: bottle

12-26-2010 20:15:58 | More by Wasatch
Photo of mothman
mothman

United Kingdom (Wales)

4.33/5  rDev -3.1%
look: 4 | smell: 4 | taste: 4.5 | feel: 4 | overall: 4.5

Huge thanks to czoch75

Poured into rare vos glass.

Poured about 2 fingers of slightly off white head. Nice retention with some very nice lace walls. Color is a pale yellow with an light orange hue to it. I really am not a big fan of the color here.

Aroma: Mainly a bunch of citrus and floral notes up front. Has a lot of lemon and pine notes with a very subtle background of rye. I get some orange notes in the mix as well. A very fresh beer.

Taste: A very interesting IPA. A lot of unique flavors here. The rye sticks out a lot more here and gives it a bready feel, but complements the citrus flavors in a nice way. I get some lemon, orange, grapefruit, and mango for the citrus flavors. A nice big floral and pine hop profile is present as well.

Mouthfeel: Very bitter, a little crisp, but overall quite refreshing. Medium bodied with a tad high of carbonation, but I don't mind it. Ends with a rye/citrus flavored sticky aftertaste.

Overall, another great IPA from Alpine. I love the rye in this beer, as it is subtle, but still present. I will have no problem with this bomber. A well done beer.

Serving type: bottle

11-25-2009 17:18:56 | More by mothman
Photo of duceswild
duceswild

Maryland

4.5/5  rDev +0.7%

08-28-2012 01:55:44 | More by duceswild
Photo of BARFLYB
BARFLYB

Pennsylvania

4.25/5  rDev -4.9%

03-24-2013 03:09:06 | More by BARFLYB
Photo of superspak
superspak

Michigan

4.43/5  rDev -0.9%
look: 4 | smell: 4.5 | taste: 4.5 | feel: 4 | overall: 4.5

Got in a trade with TopsecretWaffle. 22 ounce bottle into tulip glass; no bottle dating, but was traded fresh. Pours moderately hazy bright golden amber color with a 2 finger dense white head with good retention, that reduces to a nice cap that lingers. Spotty soapy lacing clings around the glass. Aromas of big mango, passion-fruit, pineapple, peach, lemon zest, tangerine, floral, grass, light pine, bread, light rye, and floral earthiness. Fantastic aromas with great balance and complexity of tropical/citrus hop notes with a fair amount of malt balance; and great strength. Taste of big mango, passion-fruit, peach, pineapple, tangerine, lemon zest, floral, grass, light pine, light honey, bread, light rye, and floral earthiness. Fair amount of floral bitterness on the finish; with lingering notes of mango, passion-fruit, peach, pineapple, lemon zest, tangerine, floral, grass, light honey, bread, light rye, and floral earthiness on the finish for a good bit. Incredible balance and complexity of bright tropical/citrus hop notes with light-moderate malt balance; and zero cloying flavors after the finish. Medium carbonation and body; with a smooth and moderately crisp mouthfeel that is nice. Alcohol is very well hidden with only a slight warming noticed after the finish. Overall this is an incredible IPA! Fantastic balance and complexity of tropical and bright citrus hop flavors with a moderate malt balance; and extremely smooth to drink. A highly enjoyable offering.

Serving type: bottle

07-25-2013 04:15:47 | More by superspak
Photo of BillRoth
BillRoth

Maryland

4.5/5  rDev +0.7%

07-11-2013 02:40:59 | More by BillRoth
Photo of drewone
drewone

California

4.25/5  rDev -4.9%

05-27-2012 16:02:27 | More by drewone
Photo of Huhzubendah
Huhzubendah

District of Columbia

4.97/5  rDev +11.2%
look: 4.5 | smell: 5 | taste: 5 | feel: 5 | overall: 5

Bottle shared by Dreadnaught33. Thanks Jonathan!

The beer appears hazy and straw yellow with a nice white head and good lace. The aroma is a wonderful bouquet of hops, grapefruit, and citrus. This beer tastes fabulous. It is very smooth and creamy with minimal bitterness. In the finish lurks a subtle hint of warming alcohol. Highly drinkable and enjoyable. World class.

* * * * * * * * * * * * * * * * * * * * * * * * * * * * *
Fresh bottle received in a recent trade. A truly special beer. Alpine makes several of the best IPAs on the planet.

Serving type: bottle

11-12-2010 22:39:08 | More by Huhzubendah
Photo of John_M
John_M

Oregon

4/5  rDev -10.5%
look: 4 | smell: 4 | taste: 4 | feel: 4 | overall: 4

On tap at O'brien's the other night.

The beer pours a light peach color with OK head retention, but very good sticky lacing. On the nose the beer is very citrusy and spicey. In fact, there's almost a speeramint aspect to the aroma that is intriguing. The flavors on the palate generaly replicate the nose, though there's not as much spice. In fact, the beer has a fairly light mouthfeel and is almost a bit watery. On the other hand, this beer is very drinkable, and it's really difficult for me to believe the abv. is over 7%.

I thought this a nice beer, but really nothing all that special. If I lived in the San Diego area, I doubt I would ever order this again, as there are just too many other delectable options to choose from around here.

Serving type: on-tap

12-20-2008 15:58:31 | More by John_M
Photo of brandoman63
brandoman63

Illinois

4/5  rDev -10.5%

11-20-2011 04:01:24 | More by brandoman63
Photo of Mebuzzard
Mebuzzard

Colorado

4/5  rDev -10.5%
look: 4 | smell: 4 | taste: 4 | feel: 4 | overall: 4

This is a solid IPA, using the Nelson hop (only?) and some rye.
Nice pour, golden perhaps a bit of haze, but it was darn cold

Aroma is tropical and fruity, some stickiness is in there. Hoppy. A hint of pine, but mostly tropical and citrus with touch of apricot or persimmon

A bit of an odd taste, but that's not a slam. It's smooth in feel, but the flavors pop. Again, tropical fruit and citrus zest. Tangy. Somewhat sweet, a bit of spicy bread. It has a bit of pungency which gives the beer that 'oddness'

A nice beer. Good to see the Nelson and rye together; interesting

Serving type: on-tap

10-05-2011 20:46:12 | More by Mebuzzard
Photo of smakawhat
smakawhat

Maryland

4.1/5  rDev -8.3%
look: 4 | smell: 4 | taste: 4 | feel: 5 | overall: 4

Poured from the bottle into a nonic pint glass. No noticeable bottling date.

A real interesting body color, a very dark brass and polished brown, but slightly hazy. Head forms very nicely with some good lacing and retention, lots of clumpy circular rings, a very nice white color. These nice white bubbles come from the bottom to make the head.

Nose is interesting, mild grapefruit, extremely deep. Dank, mushy and floral with some strong grass. I'll admit this is quite unique but I am not exactly a fan of this nose, it's a little confusing if I could say much going on.

Taste brings some decent pleasure. A real wonderful great vinous texture, more like white wine, certainly as it says, very JUICY feel. The nose gets much larger, bolder, bigger as the tasting commences. Obvious hop angle, but scents and tastes seem to go all over. Almost kind of earthy and dirty after awhile, malts don't seem to become noticeable either.

Overall it's impressive but I don't think I am a big fan of this one. It's very good but I would probably choose something else, this seems a little excessive and all over.

Serving type: bottle

11-30-2011 00:10:38 | More by smakawhat
Photo of Viggo
Viggo

Ontario (Canada)

4.28/5  rDev -4.3%
look: 4 | smell: 4.5 | taste: 4.5 | feel: 3.5 | overall: 4

22 oz bottle, big thanks to ritzkiss for sharing this one!

Pours a cloudy orange, some amber highlights, huge and fluffy white head forms, settles to a thick ring around the glass, nice layer, looks good.

Smell is neat, white wine/riesling grapes, some floral, pine, grapefruit, bread and wheat in the middle, a bit of caramel sweetness, rye spice, orange zest, really cool hop profile.

Taste is similar, grapefruit up front, riesling again, pine, light citrus, orange peel, some biscuity malt and honey, a touch of rye with a spicy bitter finish, well balanced.

Mouthfeel is medium bodied with high carbonation. Carbonation detracts from it a bit but still a pretty swell beer. I need to get me some of those Nelson Sauvins. Thanks Eric!

Serving type: bottle

01-04-2010 16:36:54 | More by Viggo
Photo of mdaschaf
mdaschaf

Washington

4.47/5  rDev 0%
look: 4 | smell: 4.5 | taste: 4.5 | feel: 4.5 | overall: 4.5

Review from notes 3/11/11. Thanks to BeerThursdays for sending me this bottle.

A: Golden in color with a slight haziness. Fluffy 1.5 finger head with great retention, lasting the duration. Sticky lacing.

S: Very nice aroma, extremely inviting. Lots of citrus, grapefruit, orange. Very floral and grassy.

T: Tons of grapefruit as well as some orange, lemon, grass, and a little bit of pine. Has a little bit of spice. Very smooth, slightly bitter on the finish.

M/D: Medium bodied, very smooth and creamy. Spot on for an IPA, pretty much what I am looking for. Alpine continues to impress.

Serving type: bottle

03-15-2011 00:07:50 | More by mdaschaf
Photo of Bighuge
Bighuge

Minnesota

4.5/5  rDev +0.7%
look: 3.5 | smell: 5 | taste: 4.5 | feel: 4 | overall: 4.5

Pale, hazy golden body. Thin and bubbly cap of ivory white froth. Lacing comes in sporadic thin rings. Aroma brings bright layers of pink grapefruit, lemon zest, MJ, apricot, tangerine, etc... This is one great smelling beer. This IPA has nice balance between bitter and flavor in regards to the hops. Neither overpowers the other. Bitterness is fairly clean and refreshing. Flavor brings a lot of citrus and a little pine too. Not quite as bright and juicy as the aroma led me to believe, but rather, a little rough around the edges, which isn't all bad in an IPA. All of the original suspects are still around to varying degrees....grapefruit, orange, lemon, etc.... This is an interesting IPA and an interesting hop for sure.

Serving type: bottle

10-28-2009 04:56:08 | More by Bighuge
Photo of Beerandraiderfan
Beerandraiderfan

Nevada

4.84/5  rDev +8.3%
look: 4.75 | smell: 5 | taste: 5 | feel: 4.5 | overall: 4.5

Picked up some more of these at the Provisions shop a few weeks ago. Glad I did, still had the amazing orange appearance and 1" head. Aroma was the funkiest Nelson aroma experience I've ever come across. A unique hop to say the least.

Taste, ever so drinkable, big funky hop almost tropical citrus thing going for it. Alcohol on the lips in nonexistant. Rye doesn't come out, must be a low % of the malt bill, which they keep low, allowing the hops to shine. Tons of Nelsons here, imparting an almost white wine like fee to the beer, very light, but heavy handed with the Nelson hop. You'll be tasting this one for awhile, and should be happy about it. Almost perfectly unbalanced.

EDIT: Scored more of this, damn, this beer is so funky fresh. Excellent, maybe my favorite IPA.

Serving type: bottle

03-30-2011 17:40:39 | More by Beerandraiderfan
Photo of DrJay
DrJay

Massachusetts

4.1/5  rDev -8.3%
look: 4 | smell: 4 | taste: 4 | feel: 4 | overall: 4.5

Light gold in colour with a slight haze. It had a fine, bright white cap that stuck around until my pint was gone and there was lots of lace stuck to my glass. The aroma was intense with grapefruit and resin, nice for a West Coast IPA. It had a soft, citrus bitterness and grapefruit flavour throughout. There was some malt backbone that showed through towards the finish and a bit of rye spiciness as well. Quite refreshing. Just under medium bodied with smooth, fine carbonation. Light dryness, good texture. I liked the balance on this beer - solid IPA with a bit of rye that added depth to the hoppiness.

Serving type: on-tap

01-02-2010 23:49:27 | More by DrJay
Photo of tdm168
tdm168

North Carolina

4.5/5  rDev +0.7%

04-18-2014 18:17:40 | More by tdm168
Nelson from Alpine Beer Company
99 out of 100 based on 2,040 ratings.