Hoppy Birthday - Alpine Beer Company

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Hoppy Birthday
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BA SCORE
98
world-class

187 Reviews
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Reviews: 187
Hads: 1,464
rAvg: 4.45
pDev: 8.09%
Wants: 732
Gots: 150 | 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.
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Beer: Reviews & Ratings
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Reviews: 187 | Hads: 1,464
Photo of dmgeng
4.44/5  rDev -0.2%
look: 4.5 | smell: 4.25 | taste: 4.5 | feel: 4.5 | overall: 4.5

Saw this on tap and I had to try it! My first Alpine beer and it was a good one!

A - Very nice orange color with very good white head that remains. Slight haze from the dry hops. Very good lacing for an APA.

S - Great hoppy fragrance with a fresh citrus character that shines through. There is some dank and an overall fresh hop character that is very pleasant. Some malt is in there after the hops but very hop forward in the nose.

T - Has all the hops from the aroma that is citrus forward but more of the dank, resin comes through but still very fresh and almost light lemony character. The front also has a sweetness from malt. The complimenting malt flavor is there throughout the taste but still more hops as a good APA should be. Smooth finish but a good amount of bitterness for an APA almost like a weak IPA but enough malt to keep balance. The last flavors on the palate are some malt sweet and delicious hops.

M - Medium mouth-feel. Medium carbonation. Very balanced throughout.

Overall, one of the best APAs I've had. Not the best but the fresh hop flavor, the malt balance, and the medium feel make this an extremely good pale ale. I love the citrus hops and the nice sweetness the malt. Perfect if you like session IPAs. I would strongly recommend this if you want a hoppy beer but not too much of anything else.

Glass- Tapped into a Tulip (1,359 characters)

Photo of cbutova
4.45/5  rDev 0%
look: 4 | smell: 4.5 | taste: 4.5 | feel: 4.25 | overall: 4.5

McLaddens Northampton, MA. Been on draft for about two weeks. Notes taken during second time consuming it.

A- Apricot orange body from the taps to a pint glass. Fairly hazy with a fluffy white cap to a finger. Head retention decent as a small ring drops a large sheet and then some drizzled lace.

S- Definitely leans toward the dank and fruity side of things with hops producing most of the aroma. Tropical tones like mango, tangerine and melon along with general citrus and floral notes.

T- Juicy and fruity with perhaps the orange zesty notes taking more precedence but a finish of mango, peach, tangerine, floral, melon, mint and apricot. Clean besides a tiny hint of light grains.

MF- Somewhat creamy but still crisp with a high end carbonation level. Medium overall thickness finishing clean and lightly bitter.

I am so happy that Alpine brews are now available in MA. Never got to have this one out in CA but it sure is a great one. Finds a nice balance between fruity, bitter and floral and every sip is so satisfying and flavorful. (1,044 characters)

Photo of Nugganooch
4.45/5  rDev 0%
look: 4.5 | smell: 4.5 | taste: 4.5 | feel: 4 | overall: 4.5

On tap at Pizza Port Carlsbad
*Notes from 09/30/11

A: Hoppy Birthday pours a dull and pale golden honey like color with nice clarity and carbonation evident. Tiny off white fizzy head spittled about leaving waves of lace down my glass.

S: Aroma is just killer with spikes of grapefruit rinds and apricot flesh. Fresh grass and pines. Some bready malts. Smells oh so hoppy and nice.

T: Got hops? Fruity, tropical, and catty. Sweet bready pale malts come through quite a bit and more than expected but this one is overdosed with the hops. Tangerine, Passionfruit, and puckering melon. Almost too much bitters going on but such tasty goodness.

M: Very light body and creamy texture. Great carbonation lends to a dry crisp finish with a definite bitter cottonmouth effect.

D: Superb drinkability. Very light and hoppy with an overall honey sweetness. I could drink this brew all day long for sure.

A great Pale Ale and one of the hoppiest I have come across. In fact, I don't think you can pack any more hops on top of such a light malt body and reserve that balance. This one even tips the scales on the bitterness factor. (1,126 characters)

Photo of HuskyinPDX
4.45/5  rDev 0%
look: 4.5 | smell: 4.5 | taste: 4.5 | feel: 4 | overall: 4.5

Growler poured into a Pint Glass.

Thanks to Bdige for sending this up to me.

A - Pours a bright, lighter orange with a one finger cream-colored head. The head fades to a thin layer pretty quickly and a few spots of lacing were left on the glass.

S - Citrus, pineapple, orange, tropical fruit, pine.

T - Here the Tropical fruit is up front followed by more pine and grass.

D - Average carbonation and body, a touch bitter.

O - Great! You can't ask for much more than this. (477 characters)

Photo of almostjay
4.45/5  rDev 0%
look: 4 | smell: 4.5 | taste: 4.5 | feel: 4.25 | overall: 4.5

On tap at Fireworks Pizza during the Alpine launch party. I tried to go into this tasting with an open mind, as it included Nelson and Duet and I had never tried any of these beers. Hoppy Birthday was the clear winner for me, which was quite a surprise. I'm not sure I've ever had such a full bodied, hop forward satisfying APA. This would be the Alpine beer that's in my fridge at all times if I had the option. (412 characters)

Photo of srandycarter
4.45/5  rDev 0%
look: 4.5 | smell: 4.5 | taste: 4.5 | feel: 4 | overall: 4.5

C'mon, I can't believe I never reviewed this!

A - Light clear honey, huge white head, lots of lace.

S - Skanky, dirty, musky, bad ass hops.

T - Malts take a back seat to this wonderful musky skunky hop offering.

M - Medium to light, good balance and carb.

D - And only 5.25? Oh, session time! (297 characters)

Photo of Lunch
4.45/5  rDev 0%
look: 4.5 | smell: 4.5 | taste: 4.5 | feel: 4 | overall: 4.5

64oz. Growler shared by Dr. Abmuh, thanks!

Well goddamn this is a great APA and if I were categorizing it I'd suggest it being an American IPA, but who the fuck am I to nitpick? Let's drink some more.

Poured into a Jester King snifter and I can smell the motherfucker already. Pours golden with some haze along with a bright white head with a stream of bubbles coming up from the bottom of the glass. Smells of citrus hops a plenty and this translates beautifully into the taste. Lost of bright citrus with no malt. Mouthfeel is perhaps a touch thin, but if these other assholes were not drinking this with me, I would drink all 64oz. myself, just kidding, but not really. (674 characters)

Photo of jrallen34
4.45/5  rDev 0%
look: 4.5 | smell: 4.5 | taste: 4.5 | feel: 3 | overall: 5

A fresh growler provided by Alex, drank from a Cigar City snifter... The body is a bright dark clear gold with a beautiful off-white head. The head rises a few fingers and settles with a nice cap, decent lacing. Crystal colors and contrast, looks great... The aroma is very sharp, at the most basic level its a mixture of catty/dank and sweet amarillo like hops. Other notes of pine and lemon, very good. Its sweet but dank... The taste isn't as sweet as the nose, more of steady hops throughout, not super bitter though. Light grapefruit on the front. This is an apa that tastes like an ipa but drinks like an apa. Has to be one of the most flavorful drinkable 5% beers out there. The aroma is outstanding, well worth trying. The aroma is more of 4.75 and taste is more a 4.25. (778 characters)

Photo of billab914
4.45/5  rDev 0%
look: 4.5 | smell: 4.5 | taste: 4.5 | feel: 4 | overall: 4.5

Poured from a growler into a tasting glass. It poured a very bright, golden amber color with a thin but sticky white lacing covering the top of the beer. Great lacing as I drank it as well.

The aroma has some great topical, fruit punch like flavors to it. I get pineapple, each and mango all coming out. There is a little bit of a creamy orange presence to it as well. It's very hoppy and vibrant. Great aroma overall.

The taste also shows a lot of tropical fruit notes to it. Peach, pineapple and mango are again all there. In the finish I get a little more of a resiny, grapefruit bitterness coming out. It's very bright, juicy and easy drinking.

The mouthfeel is on the lighter side with carbonation being moderate. Overall I thought it was an awesome beer. It was very hoppy and bright but at the same time light, refreshing and drinkable. What is really outstanding about this beer though is all that flavor is in a beer with abv in the low 5% range. Great beer overall. (981 characters)

Photo of Beerswag
4.47/5  rDev +0.4%
look: 3.75 | smell: 4.25 | taste: 4.75 | feel: 4.75 | overall: 4.25

On tap Lowbrough sacramento, ca
Pours hazy gold with hints of bright orange. Smells fruity, apricot, dank, sour-deisel. Taste is pine citrus, resin, graipfruit rind, apricot, bitter. (Not the typical floral, balanced APA, more of a "hop-head" APA with hops in the forfront and very pertinant, compare to the medium malt profile expressed in traditional Apa's)Mouthfeel is light-medium, dry, crisp, creamy, bitey. Overall a pleasure of an APA. Packed with flavor most complex pale ale to date for me.would go nice with black pepper/ spiced rubbed meats, sausages, bbq, fowl recommended. (585 characters)

Photo of iadler
4.47/5  rDev +0.4%
look: 4 | smell: 4.5 | taste: 4.5 | feel: 4.5 | overall: 4.5

A big thanks to hamilton23 for sending this growler. Much appreciated, Steve! From notes on Sept. 10.

A- Pours a translucent gold with a two finger head that dissipates quickly and leaves no lacing behind.

S- Tons of citrus and tropical fruit with grapefruit rind, blood orange, lemon, , mango and peach as well as pine needles and a bit of biscuit malt at the finish.

T- Follows the aroma with grapefruit, blood orange, mango and pine needles with just the smallest amount of biscuit malt at the finish.

M- Medium carbonation and a light mouthfeel that finished a bit dry.

O- Just an amazing amount of flavor for being a 5.25% beer. Extremely drinkable and one I would happy sipping on all day. (703 characters)

Photo of justintcoons
4.47/5  rDev +0.4%
look: 4.5 | smell: 4.25 | taste: 4.5 | feel: 4.75 | overall: 4.5

32 oz Crowler purchased at The Iron Abbey in Horsham, PA.
Poured into a tulip pint.

Appearance
Light gold with 1 finger of creamy head. Good clarity with moderate carbonation.

Nose
Honey, white grape, vanilla, candy sugar, papaya, and pineapple.

Taste
White grape, pineapple, papaya, mango, and pine. Smooth malt backbone of honey, candy sugar, and a touch of vanilla.

Mouthfeel
Medium bodied, juicy, oily, and crisp with a medium-light bitterness.

Overall
Phenomenal Pale Ale! Juicy as all Hell! (501 characters)

Photo of hoppymeal
4.47/5  rDev +0.4%
look: 4 | smell: 4.5 | taste: 4.5 | feel: 4.5 | overall: 4.5

Thanks Andrew for the sample.

Pours clear, light to medium copper in color. A somewhat rocky white head slowly falls back to a ring, lacing my pint glass. Incredible hop aroma, a mix of citrus and sweet berries, ripe sugary sweet grapefruit like you'd find where its grown, not bought from a supermarket. Tangerines, oranges, grass, hay, and some light sugar sweetness in the aroma as well, one of those hoppy beers where you are continually sticking your nose into the glass to catch more of the aroma. Taste hits up front with some orange sweetness, cotton candy, grapefruit and grassy bitterness towards the finish. Light to medium body, bitterness is pleasing, not over the top, but just slightly puckering and dry to keep you thirsty, a perfect balance to the touch of malty body on the tongue. Crisp hoppiness with some zing left on the palate in the finish. This after 5 days across country in a growler, impressive pale ale, very sessionable, delicious. (962 characters)

Photo of Tbub18
4.48/5  rDev +0.7%
look: 4.5 | smell: 4.5 | taste: 4.5 | feel: 4.25 | overall: 4.5

On tap at 4th Ave Pub in Brooklyn for Alpine/Green Flash tap takeover. This has been one of my wants for a while--really happy I had the chance to try it. The nose on this beer is wonderful--hops galore, florally, tropical fruits and some grass. Taste follows the nose--fruity hop bomb that could easily be an IPA. This beer is very well done--right up there with Zombie Dust in terms of world class APAs for me! (416 characters)

Photo of stakem
4.48/5  rDev +0.7%
look: 5 | smell: 4.5 | taste: 4.5 | feel: 4 | overall: 4.5

Super big thanks to BdubleEdubleRUN for hooking me up with this surprise growler as an extra in our most recent box exchange. Really Brett, you are the man. Poured into a snifter, the brew appears a perfectly clear color of golden. A rich finger of white creamy head sits atop and slowly fades leaving an entire white wall of lace sticking to the glass. Rising bubbles of carbonation maintain a thin film across the top. A light swirl revives a finger of yellow stained head back to the surface.

The aroma of this brew is ridiculous. It is an assault of hoppiness inside the nostrils. Big dank hop aspect has an herbaceous feel that leans towards pulp, pine, lemony citrus, more fruit and floral quality. There is a bit of catty elements at times and a bit of cheese when the glass is swirled. Not saying the cheese is a bad thing, it is just a unique phenomenon that ive run across before with brews that have a big dank aroma. Despite all the herbal components going on in this aroma, some smells still bring out that fruity and floral aspect that makes you think for a second that this might be a sweet brew.

The taste is just as herbal as you might think based off of the aroma. It is weedy with some catty notes and a bit of pine. There are rindy and pulp elements of fruit that are more citrus and almost lemony. A fine toasty grain character is hiding under the hops but it provides no sweetness, instead its a toasty backing that the hops take hold of and bring out lots of herbal flavoring. The aftertaste is a bit grassy and hints towards a slight tingle and warmth of alcohol that mix with lemon and pine to create a soothing almost menthol-like finish.

This is a medium to lighter bodied brew with a modest amount of carbonation. It is a grossly exaggerated example of an over-hopped pale ale (in a good way!) The modest level of carbonation gives way to a light body that at times is watery in a way that does not distract from the experience but increases it's overall drink-ability. I am pretty sure if this was made available to me on a regular basis I would pound it. The depth of flavor encapsulated here is impressive, I thoroughly enjoyed how much hop flavor it had without being excessively bitter for an APA. Very well done yet again Alpine and thank you a ton for sharing this Brett! (2,309 characters)

Photo of BucannonXC5
4.48/5  rDev +0.7%

Type: Growler
Glass: Firestone pint glass
From: Alpine Beer Company Pub in Alpine, Calif.
Price: $12.82
Purchased: Oct. 24, 2014
Consumed: Oct. 24, 2014
Misc.: N/A

Poured a honey, orange, semi-hazy color with 1-to-2 fingers of khaki white head. Slow stream of bubbles coming up from the bottom. Below average spotty lacing on the sides of the glass. Below average spider web retention on the top all the way down. (Sight - 3.88)

Smelled a ton of pleasant hops, reminding me instantly of an IPA. Got Citra hops, floral hops, grapefruit, orange, orange creamscicle, nectarine, tangerine, caramel, tropical hops, orange pulp, mango, pineapple and slight earthy rye hops. Best initial Alpine comparison is a Nelson. (Smell - 4.63)

Tasted a lot like the nose, although I don’t think quite as good. Got Citra hops, floral hops, bitter grapefruit rind, orange pulp, caramel, orange creamscicle, nectarine, tangerine, tropical hops, mainly pineapple and mango, and New Zealand hops. (Taste - 4.50)

Medium body. Oily texture. Average carbonation. Long, bitter citrusy finish. (Feel - 4.38)

Just a fantastic pale ale and I feel like I kind of underrated it. Glad I still have ¾ of a growler left. (Overall - 4.50)

4.48 | 99 | A (1,227 characters)

Photo of CHickman
4.49/5  rDev +0.9%
look: 4.5 | smell: 4.25 | taste: 4.5 | feel: 4.5 | overall: 4.75

Solid looking draft beer (on tap at BBD's in Rocky Point, NY) with hazy dark gold color and a creamy 2 finger tan head that faded very slowly and left excellent foamy lacing and rings as it went down.

Smells and tastes of fresh juicy citrus hops, grapefruit, lemon, orange, piney hops, pineapple, graham cracker, lightly toasted grains, biscuit, caramel, floral hops, light spices and more hops. Wow, the hops are aggressive but perfectly sweet and this brew is perfectly balanced. Not much more to say except that it is excellent.

Mouthfeel was creamy, smooth and almost buttery with very mild carbonation and a slightly bitter aftertaste that trails off with a combo of malty sweetness and fresh juicy hops. Well crafted, this was extremely easy to drink and lived up to the hype and ratings. (797 characters)

Photo of scottfrie
4.49/5  rDev +0.9%
look: 4.5 | smell: 4.25 | taste: 4.5 | feel: 5 | overall: 4.5

16oz nonic pint at HG.

A: Served a dark golden/medium amber with a greasy and soft off-white head that slowly faded into a fuzzy and lasting collar. Sticky sheets of lace were left down the glass.
S: Citrus hops on the nose with scents of bitter grapefruit and sweet tangerine among other things. There's a couple leafy notes in there as well as a kiss of bready malt. Smells crisp and light.
T: Follows the nose with a solid bitter punch of citrus juice balanced by a touch of bready and toasted malt in the finish. I get hint of onion and something herbal as well. Overall very balanced and extremely smooth and easy to drink, but still packs a nice hoppy bitter punch.
M: On the lighter side of a medium body, soft and smooth carbonation that adds the right amount of chew without any bubbly tingliness. Crisp and thirst quenching mouthfeel.
O: Exceptionally balanced, creamy, and smooth. A perfect amount of light crisp mouthfeel mixed with a clean hop punch. I could drink this all day. (992 characters)

Photo of Stevedore
4.49/5  rDev +0.9%
look: 4.25 | smell: 4.5 | taste: 4.5 | feel: 4.5 | overall: 4.5

On tap at 38 Degrees Ale House in Alhambra, CA. Pint glass.

A- Clear, pale golden-copper body. One finger white head, above-average retention time; very nice lacing as well. Coats the glass in thick rings of lacing.

S- Grapefruit, orange, lemon, stonefruit. Wow. This is a blast of aromatic hops, typical as per Alpine. Caramel and honey sweetness rounds the aromas out. Delicious blast of hop aromas makes me smile.

F- Very fruity; grapefruit, lemon, pine are the predominant hop flavours here.Nicely balanced out by a mild caramel sweetness, possibly honey as well. It's incredibly hoppy for an APA, yet is not unbalanced. The pine comes out more towards the end. The malt backbone isn't the strongest at first which allows the hops to shine, but as it warms up, it becomes more nicely balanced.

M- Medium bodied, soft, not bone-dry like other west-coast IPAs. Quenches the thirst that I had in a big way. Smooth, soft, moderately resinous but not too sticky. Finish is a nice balance of caramel, honey sweetness with a pine/citrus bitterness; it becomes more balanced towards the end which helps in giving me a second wind to finish the pint. Very nice, very drinkable and very enjoyable.

O- One of Alpine's better offerings. I like this almost just as much as Nelson, which is saying a lot. Plenty of hops, crushable at a low ABV, soft and moderately dry mouthfeel. It's fairly hard to find anything off about this beer- it drinks with the hop punch of an IPA, but with the drinkability of an APA.

Final score: 4.49 (1,527 characters)

Photo of RaulMondesi
4.5/5  rDev +1.1%
look: 4.5 | smell: 4.5 | taste: 4.5 | feel: 4.5 | overall: 4.5

On tap at tha Joint - Alpine, itself.

Did it again. Alpine all up in it and they did it again. Close, but so far. Raul lives close, but yet so far!

Nothing but clean. All kinds of clean. Your sister after some pert plus kind of clean. This almost shouldn't happen; it's too good!

Now, Zombie this isn't, but lets be real; like your girlfriend in high school whom "stuffed" herself, Zombie is trying to deceive us also. (You're not a Pale Ale, Zombie!) Anyway...

Just sexy. So smooth, so smooth! And sexy. Ruff ruff! (520 characters)

Photo of FosterJM
4.5/5  rDev +1.1%
look: 4.5 | smell: 4.5 | taste: 4.5 | feel: 4.5 | overall: 4.5

683rd Review on BA
Growler to Flute

App- A vibrant little orange color with a small one finger head and lace all over the glass. For a APA such a rich color.

Smell- Like Emeril says, BAM! Aromatics all over the place with this beer. Hoppy, fruity, lush, crisp.

Taste- WOW! This was seriously good. I'm not normally an APA fan but this was so far above any other APA I was taken aback. Lush, fruity, hoppy but not bitter. Just so damn good.

Mouth- A medium body that borders on light, a carbonation level of medium that almost hit a high note for me.

Drink- Simply put DAMN! I want to drive down to Alpine and get another couple growlers after A generous BA had this at Clusterfork #6 (689 characters)

Photo of M_J_Z
4.5/5  rDev +1.1%
look: 4.5 | smell: 4.5 | taste: 4.5 | feel: 4.5 | overall: 4.5

Tried this on draft in July 2015 at The Brass Tap in Winter Park/Orlando, FL.

I'm very impressed with this beer. It possesses a lot of balance; a great color, an appropriate PA/IPA aroma and an excellent mouthfeel/aftertaste (slight bitterness in the AT without being malty). Really glad I got to try this one (Alpine seems to be making its way to FL now; perhaps because of the Green Flash connection?).

I somehow gave this only 4.25 stars, overall, on Untappd but am rating it higher here. I think it deserves the extra .25 boost. It's very good and I highly recommend trying this if you're able to. (603 characters)

Photo of callmemickey
4.5/5  rDev +1.1%
look: 4.5 | smell: 4.5 | taste: 4.5 | feel: 4.5 | overall: 4.5

A: Crystal clear golden orange body. Massive white head. Excellent retention and substantial lacing.

S: Tropical aromas dominate. Grapefruit, orange, mango, maybe some tangerine in there as well. Underlying notes of freshly cut grass.

T: Profound grapefruit, light bready malts, floral hops, orange, mango.

M: Light to medium bodied. Assertive carbonation, moderate bitterness, nice crisp bite in the finish. Epitome of "sessionable."

O: This is right there with Zombie Dust as far as pale ales go. I keep forgetting how low of an ABV this is and I'd think it was a massive IPA based upon the hops if I didn't know better. (626 characters)

Photo of Sean9689
4.5/5  rDev +1.1%
look: 4.5 | smell: 4.5 | taste: 4.5 | feel: 4.5 | overall: 4.5

Growler thanks to Alex by way of ArthurPendragon!

A - Pours golden yellow, white frothy head, large bubbles remain here and there, some spotty lacing, and a thin cap on top.

S - Lemon-esk piney hoppy goodness, citrus, pine, slight dank. So so good...the hops is just straight forward, slightly dry, lots of cirtus.

T - Lemon-peel, citrus, pine, hops, bitterness. Straight forward but just well-done and excellent. Really hard to put into a review how good this really is...seriously, get some.

M - Light, crisp, refreshing, perfect carbonation, really f'n good.

D - Wow...just....wow. An awesome APA and right up there with RR Parking Violation. Drinks like an IPA without the ABV. Must get more and if you haven't had it yet, please get you some. A must-try. (766 characters)

Photo of Kshock
4.5/5  rDev +1.1%
look: 4.5 | smell: 4.5 | taste: 4.5 | feel: 4.5 | overall: 4.5

A- Bright lighter brown color with good retention. Sticky lacing.

S- Citrus and piney hops are all over this beer. Tons of aroma hops, huge nose on this beer. The effervescence on this beer is tremendous.

T- very bitter up front with piney hops, some citrus flavors come through on the back. Residual bitterness is def there.

M- med to light body, drys very quickly, leaving some residual bitterness.

O- Double IPA with an ABV of a American Pale Ale. Awesome session beer for the IPA drinker. (497 characters)

Hoppy Birthday from Alpine Beer Company
98 out of 100 based on 187 ratings.