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Hoppy Birthday - Alpine Beer Company

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Hoppy Birthday
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BA SCORE
98
world-class

201 Reviews
THE BROS
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no score

(Send Samples)
Reviews: 201
Hads: 1,559
rAvg: 4.43
pDev: 8.35%
Wants: 734
Gots: 165 | FT: 0
Brewed by:
Alpine Beer Company visit their website
California, United States

Style | ABV
American Pale Ale (APA) |  5.25% ABV

Availability: Rotating

Notes & Commercial Description:
Beer added by: HopHead84 on 05-24-2010

No notes at this time.
View: Beers (46) | Events
Beer: Reviews & Ratings
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Reviews: 201 | Hads: 1,559
Photo of Obsidian
5/5  rDev +12.9%
look: 5 | smell: 5 | taste: 5 | feel: 5 | overall: 5

Poured from an Alpine growler 05/24/14 (filled the same day). Absolutely the best American Pale Ale I have had, just a perfect balance of hoppy, sweet and bitter.

I am looking forward to the pending Green Flash treatment of this excellent ale, and to see how the ratings go once it sort of hits the masses. THIS is what the so called "session IPA's" should be, IMO. (366 characters)

Photo of Sm00thHoperator
5/5  rDev +12.9%
look: 5 | smell: 5 | taste: 5 | feel: 5 | overall: 5

God this pale ale has to be the best in the world. Forgot zombie dust go for this! So Cal residents only though so come on down and join the fun!

Sunset orange in color with tropical mango and pine aromas. Taste follows the nose with a velvet mouth feel. (255 characters)

Photo of santomark
5/5  rDev +12.9%

I had this at congregation ale house. I've heard great things about this and it did not disappoint. I even gave some to a non-beer-enthusiast and he loved it. Sweet, malty, crisp bitter, dry, smooth, citrus, refreshing. This beer is a solid brew, if you find it. GET IT! (270 characters)

Photo of brycevolk
5/5  rDev +12.9%
look: 5 | smell: 5 | taste: 5 | feel: 5 | overall: 5

A - Golden straw color with a long lasting head and great lacing.

S - Everything one wants from an epic APA - fresh hop bomb with a hint of malty sweetness.

T - Incredibly well balanced. I really can't say enough about this beer. The bready malts gently wash over your tongue, then give way to the fresh hop explosion that finishes cleanly as you swallow. The lupulin finish lasts as long as you can wait until the next sip.

M - Alpine beers have some of the creamiest, smoothest mouthfeels of any brews, and this one is no different. In my opinion, the mouthfeel is what truly differentiates this APA from the competition.

O - Certainly the number one APA I've had the pleasure of trying. This should be the gold-standard of the style.

Big thanks to imyourhero21 and loweball727! (786 characters)

Photo of pperrecone
5/5  rDev +12.9%
look: 5 | smell: 5 | taste: 5 | feel: 5 | overall: 5

Smell man so many layers of hops. nelson, cirta, simcoe, amarillo, pacific gem and one more I cant name. layers of smell.

tast is as the smell layers of hops and balance of bitterness for a session beer. A++++

Body is perfect nice and dry

Over all one of the best beers on the market. (287 characters)

Photo of TastefulNudity
5/5  rDev +12.9%
look: 5 | smell: 5 | taste: 5 | feel: 5 | overall: 5

Served in the Alpine Beer pub (the closest thing I'll ever get to heaven) in a taster glass.

A: Golden with a nice white head sitting up top.

S: This is an APA?! Huge fresh hop aroma, small caramel backbone, clean and simple.

T: This was one of those moments of beer clarity. Fresh assault of hoppy flavor without being overly bitter or heavy. Light and crisp backbone keeps it all in check and finishes up the end.

M: I've been getting sick of the heavy mouthfeel of DIPAs and this was the perfect cure. Caramel backbone sweetened just enough without being overdone.

O: I tasted this beer knowing it had a score of 100 on BA. It still blew my mind, and it made me reconsider the style of American Pale Ales. There is still much I do not know. I haven't had it, but I'm assuming that this is the west coast Zombie Dust. A+ (827 characters)

Photo of rudeboy916
5/5  rDev +12.9%
look: 5 | smell: 5 | taste: 5 | feel: 5 | overall: 5

A - Pours clear golden with a thick fluffy head

S - This is probably the best smelling hoppy beer to ever visit my nose! TONS of pine and citrusy fruits. Absolutely amazing!

T - This tastes even better then the aroma, which I don't know how that's possible. Just a hint of bitterness, but a bouquet of hop flavor! Citrus and pine, grapefruit, lemon. Simply delicious!

M - Appropriate carbonation, low bitterness, which is stellar! Smooth and balanced.

D - I could drink this everyday. One of the best beers I've had from Alpine! And that says a LOT! Perfectly made! (570 characters)

Photo of Rocknrao
5/5  rDev +12.9%

Tried this at on tap at City Beer Store in SF. Really sparkly hop flavor. It's like 5 different kinds of bitterness mixed together that turn into something totally different when combined.

If you like IPAs, then this is definitely a pleasing drink.

It's not overly malty or heavy, as some IPAs can be. There's very little head. The color is a pale amber.

The beer it reminds me of most is Russian River Brewing's Row 2 Hill 56. I like Alpine Hoppy Birthday better though.

I understand that Alpine is working with Green Flash now to increase their production and distribution range, so hopefully this will become available more easily now. (649 characters)

Photo of largadeer
4.97/5  rDev +12.2%
look: 4.5 | smell: 5 | taste: 5 | feel: 5 | overall: 5

Growler from ArthurPendragon. Thanks, old friend. The beer is a hazy, glowing yellow peach color. An inch of sudsy, frothy foam tops the body and retains nicely for the duration of the glass, which was admittedly brief. The first whiff displays huge tropical fruit and citrus hop aromas. Pineapple, papaya, a plethora of words that begin with P. Also mango maybe, which begins with M. Malt character is faint, possibly even imaginary. The taste is explosively hoppy yet quite dry and nuanced, with a light biscuit malt foundation barely perceptible beneath the hops. The hop flavors range from tropical fruit to fresh pine needles to juicy citrus. The body is light, but this has a ton of flavor. It finishes with a silky smoothness, only moderately bitter really, and with incredible balance. This is exceptional. Superlatives and Alpine seem to go hand in hand. (863 characters)

Photo of graymoment
4.95/5  rDev +11.7%
look: 5 | smell: 5 | taste: 5 | feel: 4.5 | overall: 5

Beautiful appearance with tons of fluffy, white head, which retained for quite some time in the glass.

Citrus and some pine all over the nose, with a very distinct "Alpine" aroma. No discernible malt could be detected whatsoever, either in the aroma or in mouth. Bone dry, all hop, no malt, with very little bitterness.

How they achieved the level of hop complexity without any malt and very little weight or ABV is quite intriguing. I believe it is a Citron dry hopped APA, but presents more like an IPA. (509 characters)

Photo of MrVonzipper
4.94/5  rDev +11.5%
look: 4 | smell: 5 | taste: 5 | feel: 5 | overall: 5

Thanks to DarthKostrizer!
Pale clear golden. Fizzy short white head. Low retention and lace. 

Huge bright fresh nose. Bright citrus. A touch floral. Very nice. 

Flavor is very nice for a pale ale. Big crisp flavor. Nice floral and citrus hops.

Mouthfeel is very nice and light bodied with pretty high crisp carbonation.

Overall this is an amazing bright, clean, well balanced fresh pale ale. I love Zombie Dust, but this is even better! (444 characters)

Photo of OTB
4.92/5  rDev +11.1%
look: 4.5 | smell: 5 | taste: 5 | feel: 4.5 | overall: 5

Finally got around to bringing a growler home after missing out on the last few releases. First time with this brew.
Poured into my tulip the brew is a beautiful pale orange with a thick one inch bright white head that leaves curtains of webbing as I drink down. The nose is amazing, pure Citra hop aromas with white flowers and peaches, simply one of the best noses on any beer I've had. The flavor profile follows the nose with concentrated citrus, stone fruits some bitter hop bites and a beautiful glance of light biscuit. The mouth is crisp, dry, and cleanses the palate with perfect carbonation. By far the best pale ale I have ever had, another world class effort from my favorite brewery on the planet. (710 characters)

Photo of notchucknorris
4.92/5  rDev +11.1%
look: 4.5 | smell: 5 | taste: 5 | feel: 4.5 | overall: 5

On tap at Toronados

A: Golden color with a 1/2 inch cream colored head.

S: I don't even think I can begin to put the smell into words. It's absolutely amazing and the best smelling pale ale I've ever come across. Huge candied grapefruit, mango and citrus hops with a little honey as well. Perfect.

T: Somehow, the taste is just as good as the smell. A hint of mango and then a big hit of citrus and slightly piney hops. Some caramel malts balance the hops before they can get too bitter and the finish has just a touch of pine hop resin. A picture perfect pale ale. Must get more. (585 characters)

Photo of Arbitrator
4.92/5  rDev +11.1%
look: 4.5 | smell: 5 | taste: 5 | feel: 4.5 | overall: 5

Chilled growler into a glass. Yeah, I killed it alone, shut up, Roger.

Thanks to Chris (largadeer) and Ted (chswimmer) for grabbing it for me.

A: Pours a clear, golden-tinged peach body that is capped by 2" of fluffy, off-white head. Retention is great, and the beer deposits tons of sticky, white lace down the sides of the glass. Great look for a pale ale.

S: Tropical citrus all the way. They took pains to refrigerate this growler for the 5 days before I got it, and the aromatics really show. Fresh-cut pineapple, passionfruit, jackfruit, mango, grapefruit, tangerine. I could go on and on listing tropical fruits that only my girlfriend actually eats. There's a small touch of pine as well.

T: It has a light biscuit malt presence, just enough to give it some body to offset the huge hop flavors. As noted in the nose, it's tropical citrus all the way. It's not very bitter at all; a nearly clean flavor, in fact. Some small pine flavors are noted, but they barely offset the residual biscuit malt, and absolutely pale (ha!) in comparison to the citrus varieties.

M: Light-bodied. It's not crisp, but it has enough cleansing carbonation that the next sip (and many dozens after) are as fresh as the first. The right balance of residual sugar to offset the hop flavors and prevent this from tasting like watery hop juice.

D: I killed a growler. 'Nuff said.

Is there a better pale ale out there? (1,411 characters)

Photo of stawn
4.92/5  rDev +11.1%
look: 4.5 | smell: 5 | taste: 5 | feel: 4.5 | overall: 5

Growler fill from the brewery on 6.12.10

A - Pours clear golden with a thick fluffy head

S - This is probably the best smelling hoppy beer to ever visit my nose! TONS of pine and citrusy fruits. Absolutely amazing!

T - This tastes even better then the aroma, which I don't know how that's possible. Just a hint of bitterness, but a bouquet of hop flavor! Citrus and pine, grapefruit, lemon. Simply delicious!

M - Appropriate carbonation, low bitterness, which is stellar! Smooth and balanced.

D - I could drink this everyday. One of the best beers I've had from Alpine! And that says a LOT! Perfectly made! (612 characters)

Photo of JRhode
4.92/5  rDev +11.1%
look: 4.5 | smell: 5 | taste: 5 | feel: 4.5 | overall: 5

From a pitcher at the new BBQ joint shared with Jessethehutt.

Nice light golden/orange glow with frothy head that leaves sticky lacing.

Has the Alpine smell with sweet orange/tropical fruit and some piney floral scents as well. Remember thinking, "hope this tastes as good as it smells."

Tasted at least as good as it smelled, with an amazing amount of flavor packed in to a low abv package. Great fruity/bitter hop character that dries out perfectly on the finish. No "balance" whatsoever, just hops. Let those east coast/midwest folk make "balanced" IPAs.

Lively carbonation and refreshing, light mouthfeel.

Drinkability is phenomenal.

I would call this an IPA for sure, and may be my new favorite Alpine IPA. They need to crank out batch after batch of this stuff; no longer on for tastes or growler fills in the tasting room. (836 characters)

Photo of Huhzubendah
4.92/5  rDev +11.1%
look: 4.5 | smell: 5 | taste: 5 | feel: 4.5 | overall: 5

Growler shared by yourefragile. Thanks Michael!

The beer appears straw yellow and slightly hazy. The head is thick and white, displays lasting retention, and leaves ample lacing on the tulip glass. The aroma...wow. One of the best aromas in a pale ale I have ever experienced. This would give any IPA more than a run for its money. Fresh hops and a blast of varied citrus. The flavor is absolutely phenomenal. This is perhaps the most drinkable and enjoyable <6% beer I have had the pleasure to sample. Perfect? Ya, pretty much. My highest recommendation. (559 characters)

Photo of JohnG190
4.91/5  rDev +10.8%
look: 4.75 | smell: 5 | taste: 5 | feel: 4.75 | overall: 4.75

Pours a pale gold with a small white head, good retention. Lots of citrus on the nose with mango, pineapple and apricot notes. Hop forward. Fruity on the front of the tongue followed by pine resin. Biscuity malt backbone but takes a back seat to the hops. Light bodied with light carbonation. Finishes dry. Overall possibly the best sessionable APA out there. (359 characters)

Photo of DarthKostrizer
4.9/5  rDev +10.6%
look: 5 | smell: 5 | taste: 5 | feel: 4 | overall: 5

On tap at Alpine

Look: Nice golden yellow in color with a nice 1/2 in white head and great retention and lacing

Smell: Is a perfect combonation of floral and citrus hops they are in such perfect balance it almost creates a perfume like note that I want my wife to wear

Taste: Is very similar to the nose with the exception that it also has a very nice frutiness to it. Hands down the best tasting pale ale I have tried

Mouthfeel: A little less than medium body so it could use just a bit more body and perfectly carbonated

Overall: About as perfect as a pale ale can be. Absolutely loved this beer and now I am kicking myself in the ass for not getting a growler of the stuff (680 characters)

Photo of Reema
4.9/5  rDev +10.6%
look: 5 | smell: 5 | taste: 4.75 | feel: 5 | overall: 5

On tap at Slaters 50/50 in Rancho Cucamonga.

Pours a clear amber color with a dank hoppy smell. Hard to believe this is an APA. Tastes crisp and hoppy. Very delicious. A small fruity flavor in the aftertaste,

This beer in really good. Definitely crushable but you want to savor each sip with this one, it's definitely a treat. (329 characters)

Photo of starrdogg
4.89/5  rDev +10.4%
look: 4 | smell: 5 | taste: 5 | feel: 4.5 | overall: 5

Huge thanks to MrHirschybar for this one.

A: Pours a clear golden color with a nice white head, pretty unassuming looking, but nice nonetheless; I had no idea what was coming

S: The aroma is incredible. It's got a huge dank hoppy, citrusy smell that makes my mouth water.

T: The flavor here is incredibly complex, there's so much different flavors here and they all seem to co-exist perfectly. It's both citrusy and piney at the same time. The flavor is huge, like a DIPA, but it's also ridiculously drinkable. Overall, incredibly delicious.

M: It's medium-bodied, a little bit of creaminess up front, but very dry on the back end.

O: This beer is unlike anything I've ever drank and is another huge success from Alpine. They packed so much flavor into a small APA package which combines for the most flavorful borderline-session beer I've ever had. (856 characters)

Photo of Dreadnaught33
4.89/5  rDev +10.4%
look: 4 | smell: 5 | taste: 5 | feel: 4.5 | overall: 5

Thanks again to starrdogg for sharing a growler of this amazing beer, thanks Matt. Alpine is quickly becoming in my book the go to brewery for hop heads like me.

A: Very clean almost lager like look with an orange/gold hue with a small ring of head and some good lacing. Some chunks of hops are floating in there, a good sign in my book.

S: What an amazing dry hop smell. So open and inviting, the smell has all the hop goodness of pine, grass, citrus rind, and weed in there. Some sweet candy malt compliments nicely to the hop barrage in the smell. Outstanding smell, just incredible.

T: The taste is so complex, I'm amazed the ABV is so low, not to say I detected any heat, but 5% beers are just not this tasty and all out hoppy. Lemon grass, fresh pine and grass, some citrus (dry), and just the right amount of crispy sugar malt rounds it out. What an awesome beer! The tastiest APA I've ever had, and this is from a die hard 3F fan (Alpha King, Zombie Dust both are amazing but this one may take the cake.)

M: Nice bitter back, and an overall very dry west coast hop beer thats great. Still semi sweet and smooth. Great medium feel, a little spicy.

O: Amazing, just an amazing beer. I absolutely love Alpine. (1,222 characters)

Photo of 321jeff
4.88/5  rDev +10.2%
look: 5 | smell: 4.5 | taste: 5 | feel: 5 | overall: 5

Growler shared by yourefragile, thanks!

Pours a cloudy golden yellow with a couple fingers of mostly white head that slowly fades to a thin layer, leaving tons of lace on the side of the glass.

Aroma is a solid mix of all the hop smells I can think of, piney resins, grapefruit, pretty much everything but the kitchen sink. Some hints of sweet malts in the background.

The taste is loaded with resiny hops and some sweet citrus flavors. There's plenty of bitterness from the massive amount of hops. It almost tastes more like a mild IPA than an APA, but either way, the flavors work together perfectly and just taste spectacular.

The mouthfeel is equally as good, full and meaty with lots of carbonation. Overall, this is one of the best surprise beers I've ever had. It completely blows any other APA out of the water, and there are some really good APA's out there. (871 characters)

Photo of WeisGuy
4.87/5  rDev +9.9%
look: 4.5 | smell: 5 | taste: 5 | feel: 4 | overall: 5

Growler from Ultraman9000 - thanks, Martin!

Pours a slightly hazy, bright amber color with a two-finger, frothy white head. Head retention is very good, as is lacing. Tropical fruit and citrus really shine in the nose, with pineapple, tangerine and mango notes coming through. There's a nice cracker and caramel malt aroma underneath the hops. The taste is much the same, with pineapple, mango and tangering fruit flavors melding nicely with a substantial cracker malt with a slight caramel sweetness. Alcohol is unnoticeable. Medium-bodied with moderate carbonation and a fairly dry finish. Drinkability is off-the-charts here - this really hits everything I look for in a sessionable beer. The flavors are refreshing and interesting with a very nice balance, though, obviously, this leans to the hoppy side. Overall, another incredible hoppy beer from Alpine. Every time I try something new from this brewery, I am more and more impressed. This might nudge Alpine slightly ahead of Russian River as my favorite brewer for hoppy beers. (1,037 characters)

Photo of KATCanada
4.87/5  rDev +9.9%
look: 4 | smell: 5 | taste: 5 | feel: 4.75 | overall: 4.75

I've been lucky enough to have a lot of great APA's - Edward, Sierra Nevada, Daisey Cutter, Alpha King, Zombie etc. This one is, in my mind, the best, especially for a good session. Incredible citrus nose, forward but not overagressive hops. I could easily drink this all day. (276 characters)

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Hoppy Birthday from Alpine Beer Company
98 out of 100 based on 201 ratings.