Hoppy Birthday - Alpine Beer Company

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Hoppy Birthday
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BA SCORE
98
world-class

184 Reviews
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Reviews: 184
Hads: 1,442
rAvg: 4.46
pDev: 2.91%
Wants: 735
Gots: 148 | 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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Reviews: 184 | Hads: 1,442
Photo of GreesyFizeek
4.35/5  rDev -2.5%
look: 4 | smell: 4.5 | taste: 4.25 | feel: 4.75 | overall: 4.25

On tap at The Tap and Mallet in Rochester, NY.

Pours a golden straw yellow/orange, with a half inch head, and a little bit of lacing.

Smells really dry, grassy, and bitter, with some dry, bitter grapefruit, perfume, grass, and a little bit of lemon.

This honestly reminds me of a slightly stronger Carton Boat, in how dry and bitter this is. Lots of grass, perfume, a slight amount of grapefruit, and a really long bitter lingering finish.

This is medium bodied, with a strong amount of carbonation, and a really crisp, dry mouthfeel.

I can see why this one is so popular, so tasty and so drinkable. (604 characters)

Photo of VelvetExtract
4.79/5  rDev +7.4%
look: 4.5 | smell: 4.75 | taste: 4.75 | feel: 4.75 | overall: 5

On draft. Yes. Have wanted this brew for ages. Poured fairly clear. Thin, white head. Mild lacing. Aroma sinks into my schnozzola and delivers bright, lively hoppiness. potent West coast pine and citrus along with some more East coast tropical fruit and juicy notes. Just a little bit of neutral maltiness but this one is clearly hop perfume. The flavor is simply so bright and lively it's such an enjoyable experience. Very complex hoppiness. No one hop descriptor dominates. Citrus, grass, pine, pineapple, some passion fruit and some mango. This one has plenty to latch on to. Finishes with a nurturing bready malt and a long lasting hoppy grass/fruit combo. Medium bitterness. Light bodied. Long aftertaste. Carbonation adds drinkability. This lived up to the hype for me. West Coast meets East Coast hop profile. One hell of a Pale Ale. (841 characters)

Photo of Damian
4.32/5  rDev -3.1%
look: 4 | smell: 4.5 | taste: 4.25 | feel: 4.5 | overall: 4.25

Drank on tap at Lord Hobo, Cambridge, MA
Served in a pint glass

Hazy, golden amber appearance. The beer was topped by a small, creamy, off-white crown that slowly dropped to a resilient cap of froth. A patchy ring of drippy lacing coated the top inch of the glass.

The aroma was really fruity and bright. Tropical fruits came through strong. Loads of mango, guava and passionfruit. Fairly sweet. There was a dank, marijuana-like quality as well. Somewhat citrusy. Orange zest was apparent. As the beer sat, the tropical notes subsided and the citrus intensified.

The flavor profile was solid, but not quite as smooth or as exotic as the aroma. Tropical fruits were noticeable on the front end. Pineapple and passionfruit dominated. Citrus notes appeared in the center. Orange rind was detectible. Lemony on the back end. The finish was pithy, dry and bitter with strong notes of white grapefruit and pine sap.

Impressive mouthfeel. The liquid was fuller bodied for the style and contained an ultra fine, moderate effervescence. Super soft and fluffy on the palate.

Hoppy Birthday is an immensely flavorful and complex American pale ale that truly pushes the limits of the style. Now that Alpine beers are available in the greater Boston-area, I am looking forward to trying more of their offerings. (1,303 characters)

Photo of almostjay
4.45/5  rDev -0.2%
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 mactrail
3.96/5  rDev -11.2%
look: 3.75 | smell: 4 | taste: 4 | feel: 3.75 | overall: 4

Amber fizzy brew with a decent foam in the pint shaker. On tap at Toma Sol in MIssion Hills. Richly hopped with a spritzy mouthfeel and friendly malty taste.

Hot and tangy on the tongue. Warm and toasty. Wonderful hoppy aromatics with a clean fruity taste and a bitter finish.

I know some are unhappy about the recent agreement to brew at the Green Flash facility, but in the last five years I have never seen Alpine on tap or in stores. Now I am suddenly seeing Alpine a lot of places, and the three I have tried are remarkably good. I don't see a loser here, unless people buy less Green Flash because there are better alternatives! (636 characters)

Photo of Treyliff
4.69/5  rDev +5.2%
look: 4 | smell: 5 | taste: 4.75 | feel: 4 | overall: 4.75

Growler

A- pours a slightly hazy bright golden color with a small foamy white head that reduces to a small film on top

S- huge danky hop aroma with aroma of fresh leafy hops, pine needles, citrus peel, hemp, the freshest hop aroma I've experienced from a pale ale

T- fresh and clean hoppy showcase, notes of fresh leaves and fresh cut grass, some floral notes, the finish is dry and slightly spicy

M- medium-light body with low carbonation leads to a foamy mouthfeel and crisp finish

O- so fresh, hoppy and clean, the best pale ale I've ever had (554 characters)

Photo of breadwinner
4.55/5  rDev +2%
look: 4.75 | smell: 4.75 | taste: 4.5 | feel: 4.25 | overall: 4.5

When this is on, it's the picture of a pale ale maxed out on hops. I honestly can't think of many hoppier pale ales. Don't know that the GF-version is quite on point, though. (174 characters)

Photo of MisSigsFan
4.68/5  rDev +4.9%
look: 4.5 | smell: 4.5 | taste: 4.75 | feel: 4.75 | overall: 4.75

On tap at Barrel Republic. Hazy orange in color with a white head. Smells earthy with some pine. Kinda garlicy. Taste follows the nose. Super easy to drink. Loads of dank hops, some tropical fruit. Mouthfeel is great. Really smooth and drinkable. Overall, incredible pale ale, dare I say best pale ale I've ever had. (316 characters)

Photo of Stevedore
4.49/5  rDev +0.7%
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 KATCanada
4.87/5  rDev +9.2%
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)

Photo of Rocknrao
5/5  rDev +12.1%

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 BucannonXC5
4.48/5  rDev +0.4%

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 DNICE555
4.74/5  rDev +6.3%
look: 4.5 | smell: 4.75 | taste: 4.75 | feel: 4.75 | overall: 4.75

Growler thanks to Tommy619!

A: Liquid gold

S: Grapefruit, Cuitrus, Honey... can wait to dive in

T: Incredible pale ale - Grapefruit, citrus, with honey in the finish balancing out the bitterness perfectly.

M: Smooth hoppy pale ale

O: Alpine is by far the best brewery for hoppy beers on the west coast in my opinion. (321 characters)

Photo of mrn1ceguy
4.5/5  rDev +0.9%
look: 4.5 | smell: 4.5 | taste: 4.5 | feel: 4.5 | overall: 4.5

A very amazing IPA, I'm glad it's starting to be made more. This has a lot of flavor up front, but thanks to the low ABV, is easily drinkable. Not quite as potent as its bigger badder brother (Bad Boy), but great in its own right. (232 characters)

Photo of HobbNobber
4.25/5  rDev -4.7%

Picked up,a bomber of this brew at the brewery in Alpine while passing through from San Diego to Yuma. Nice IPA. Great hop aroma. Nice lacing. Solid beer. (158 characters)

Photo of JohnG190
4.91/5  rDev +10.1%
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 santomark
5/5  rDev +12.1%

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 UncleEmu
4.12/5  rDev -7.6%
look: 4.25 | smell: 4 | taste: 4.25 | feel: 4 | overall: 4

Alpine Brewing Co. Hoppy Birthday APA
serving type: standard pint glass, on tap at St. Johns, Sunnyvale CA (July 2014)

A: Really wonderful amber littered with bright orange

S: Lots of hop dank, grapefruit

M: Semi-dry finish, medium bodied

T: Hop forward, but well balanced. The malts provide a deep and dank dish soap that isn't bitter. The pine and grass notes are gentle instead of sharp, making this quite pleasant

O: Wonderfully balanced, full of complimentary and rich flavors, really enjoyable. However, it becomes extremely bitter as it warms. Also, maybe I'm behind on hops, but there is no way in hell I would call this an APA. (642 characters)

Photo of mabermud
4.3/5  rDev -3.6%
look: 3.75 | smell: 4.25 | taste: 4.5 | feel: 4 | overall: 4.25

I used to drink this beer back in the day when it was first released. Back then, this was cutting edge stuff. The smell is wonderful and the feel is great. With the release of so many new APAs, this definitely needs an overhaul...however, it is still in the top tier for APAs.

I like a little more umph in my beer...I have a higher tolerance :(

Marked up for originality and for being a prototypical APA. (411 characters)

Photo of easong
4.79/5  rDev +7.4%
look: 4.75 | smell: 5 | taste: 4.75 | feel: 4.5 | overall: 4.75

Another super-dry hop bomb from Alpine. This one low enough gravity to have 3 at a sitting. On draught at the Rose & Crown, Palo Alto. Cloudy pale orange pour with a finger of foam which persisted until first taste. Apricot nose and orange rind, no appreciable sweetness. A perfect IPA for a hot summer day. (307 characters)

Photo of Tele
4.38/5  rDev -1.8%
look: 4.25 | smell: 4.25 | taste: 4.5 | feel: 4.5 | overall: 4.25

A: 4.25 Cloudy orange gold with a one inch off white head.

S: 4.25 Bready and hoppy with tropical fruits and some dank.

T: 4.5 Similar to the nose with some more breadlines and a bitter/dry finish.

M: 4.5 Nice body with good carbonation. The dryness makes this beer quite refreshing.

O: 4.25 Lots if flavor, especially for a pale ale. Almost up there with Alpine’s IPAs. (380 characters)

Photo of MrMoose916
4.53/5  rDev +1.6%
look: 4 | smell: 4 | taste: 4.75 | feel: 4.75 | overall: 4.75

Served on tap at Final Gravity Taproom.

A: Super hazy golden standard APA, IPA color. The white head dissipated pretty quickly.

S: Tons of fresh hops, grapefruit skin, pine, with a really nice malt backbone.

T: Wow this screams IPA rather than APA, nice hop bitterness up front, followed by more hop flavors and citrus and then balances out with a smooth malt sweetness. Very well balanced.

M: I felt it was very light with a perfect amount of carbonation.

O: Delicious, very well balanced, even though is says APA, this is an IPA to me. Love the hop blast up front and how it finished with that smooth malt sweetness. Wish I could get this in bottles. (660 characters)

Photo of putonyourwalkingshoes
4.74/5  rDev +6.3%
look: 4.5 | smell: 4.75 | taste: 4.75 | feel: 4.75 | overall: 4.75

On tap at a pizza port. Pint.

A: Liquid gold opaque. A thing of beauty. Full and opaque. Thin head but looks lovely in the light.

S: Comes in very subtle. Grapefruit citrus with a honey sweetness.

T: Perfection. I've had this on cask before and didn't enjoy it as much. On tap amazing. Heavy grapefruit pez candy-esque with honey coming in. Hoppy but well rounded and not abrasive.

M: Holds the sweetness and citrus character beautifully start to finish this has the best mouthfeel an apa can have.

O: Impressive but then again its alpine. This is a real treat. I should rate this higher because for its style its world class pale ales just aren't one of my favorite styles and they made an outstanding one. (712 characters)

Photo of More_betterness
4.55/5  rDev +2%
look: 4.25 | smell: 4.75 | taste: 4.5 | feel: 4.5 | overall: 4.5

On tap at Amazing Grapes in Rancho Santa Margarita. So excited to see this on tap outside of actually going to Alpine.

A: Hazy golden amber with a wispy head that recedes quickly. Moderate lacing.

A: Holy crap.. Zesty orange, sweet tangerine, and pine. A backbone of malt emerges as it warms. HUGE hop aroma for an APA.

T: Bitter orange rind and sweet tropical fruits. Crackery malt takes up the rear. So much flavor in respect to the ABV.

M: Soft and thin mouthfeel leads to ridiculous drinkability, and a dry finish accentuates the potent hop character. Masterful.

O: Damn near perfect for the style. Insanely crushable yet abundantly flavorful, seems like this was the 'session ipa' before the style was coined. Beautiful beer, and I can't wait to have it again. (771 characters)

Photo of spark3148857
4.56/5  rDev +2.2%
look: 4.25 | smell: 4.5 | taste: 4.75 | feel: 4.25 | overall: 4.5

I walked, well almost ran, to City Beer Store when I saw they had tapped this. Pours somewhat hazy golden, slightly darker than straw with a fluffy one finger white head. Aroma is well balanced though amazingly hoppy for a 5.5% pale ale. What really sets it apart here is that super fresh hop aroma that is reminiscent of very fresh Pliny. Big piney dank hops overwhelm the senses. On the palate there is big grapefruit up front that turns into lots of piney dankness. Wow, this is dank as hell for a pale and also more bitter than I expected. Similar hop profile to Duet imho, just accentuated in different ways. A delight and lives up to the high expectations. World class west coast APA. (690 characters)

Hoppy Birthday from Alpine Beer Company
98 out of 100 based on 184 ratings.