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Thumbprint Apple Ale - New Glarus Brewing Company

Not Rated.
Thumbprint Apple AleThumbprint Apple Ale

Educational use only; do not reuse.

445 Reviews
very good

(Read More)
Reviews: 445
Hads: 1,536
Avg: 4.12
pDev: 10.44%
Wants: 347
Gots: 209 | FT: 14
Brewed by:
New Glarus Brewing Company visit their website
Wisconsin, United States

Style | ABV
Fruit / Vegetable Beer |  4.00% ABV

Availability: Rotating

Notes & Commercial Description:
Beer added by: Skidz on 09-25-2004

No notes at this time.
Beer: Reviews & Ratings
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Reviews: 445 | Hads: 1,536
Reviews by AltBock:
Photo of AltBock
4.31/5  rDev +4.6%
look: 3.75 | smell: 4.5 | taste: 4.25 | feel: 4 | overall: 4.5

12oz bottle with a plain and simple brown recycled brown paper label with some bright red tin foil over the cap. The label only has a drawing of the state of Wisconsin with a finger print design in it. To the right of the state is a description of the beer. No vintage or best before date anywhere on the label or bottle.

I poured this Midwestern apple beer into my Southern Cigar City pint glass. This Apple Ale certainly didn't look like an apple beer. This beer poured a slightly hazy golden orange that was diluted by a little amber. It almost looked like a weak apple cider brown color. On top if this fruit beer was a 1/4 of an inch bubbly head of foam. These bubbles popped away in a blink of an eye. It only managed to leave behind a super tiny amount of bubbles along the edge of the beer.

This beer smelled like a cross between freshly pressed apple cider and a bottle of sparkling apple cider. In other words, this beer smelled like apple cider and nothing like a beer. The aroma was a little sweet and tart with mostly red delicious apples with a drop of golden delicious apples. Malt? Hops? You won't find those in here. Nothing but apples.

If you want a fruit beer with a variety of flavors in it, you better stay clear of this beer. New Glarus said this was an Apple Ale and they stayed true to their word. It didn't taste like a hard cider to me. There was nothing hard in this beer. It tasted like a non alcoholic sparking apple cider. The taste was tangy, slightly sweet, and acidic with red delicious apples with a touch of tart green apples. There was no other hidden fruit in this beer. The taste was just straight up delicious apples.

This was a light bodied beer, with a small amount of carbonation, and a dry, sweet, and tart aftertaste. The aftertaste was no surprise. It was filled with more red delicious and tart green apples. This aftertaste had a slight bite to it.

Apple Ale? They weren't joking. This is one of those beers that didn't have a variety of flavors. It had one big delicious flavor and that's it. Extremely drinkable. I would drink another bottle. Big thanks to fellow BA mnbuffalo for hooking me up with this beer.

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More User Reviews:
Photo of CraigP83
4.75/5  rDev +15.3%
look: 4.5 | smell: 5 | taste: 4.75 | feel: 4.25 | overall: 4.75

Apple Cider assault on the senses. Wonderful rendition of a fruit beer. Best cider alternative I've had

103 characters

Photo of The-Adjunct-Hippie
4.95/5  rDev +20.1%
look: 4.5 | smell: 5 | taste: 5 | feel: 4.75 | overall: 5

Served in a nonic pint.

Appearance : Mmmm. A lovely cider color, 70% opaque. The head is 2 fingers to start, creamy and frothy. It leaves hilly lace on the sides, eventually receding to a stout-like creaminess.

Smell : Apples. Oh my, apples. Freshly picked, baked in a pie with cinnamon and flaky crust. It finishes with a tartness rivaling apple cider. No discernible hops or malt, but the apple aroma is absolutely spot on.

Taste : Absolutely beyond amazing. Just. Speechless. OMG. This is the best fruit-infused ale I've ever had. Ever. No lie, wiping tears from my eyes. Tart punch, fresh strawberry, baked apples, dried apples, cider, cinnamon stick, spices. It ends candied, tart, sweet, sour, puckered, punched.

Feel : Creamy and frothy, medium to full bodied. Delectable. Properly carbonated. Ends tart, puckered, and crisp. Semi-dry.

Overall : New Glarus needs to bring beers further west. This beer was beyond fantastic. My NEW FAVORITE beer. And that has taken ages to accomplish over Hoegaarden, a beer I thought I simply could not retire to second place. Was not expecting this. Floored.

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Photo of marissarenee
5/5  rDev +21.4%
look: 5 | smell: 5 | taste: 5 | feel: 5 | overall: 5

Delicious! This is how I always wanted hard cider to taste, but it never does. Tastes and smells like actual apples and is not too sweet.

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Photo of DaPeculierDane
4.52/5  rDev +9.7%
look: 4 | smell: 4.5 | taste: 4.5 | feel: 4 | overall: 5

I just ran out of this one and I'm not too happy knowing that I'll problably never taste it again.

Note: I'm reviewing this as a hardcider and not a beer because as a beer this one is sort of iffy (There's no nuanses, no malts, no hops, nothing but apples), but as a hard cider it's one of the best I've ever had. In fact if it was just a touch more sour, I would consider it the perfect hard cider.

Toasted golden color with a nonexistant head. Looks like cider.

Smells like apples.

Tastes like the neighborhood kid is chucking apples at your mouth, pelting you over and over again until you fall, face first and land in a pile of more apples. Then the bully comes over and stomps on your head and your nose and your mouth and eyeballs grind into the apples until your whole world is all apples, apples, and more apples.

Mouthfeel: see above...should be tarter. Too sweet.

Drinkability: Despite the sweetness, i love apples, and I love the taste. Like I said, I'm a bit tore up that I won;t be getting any more of this stuff.

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Photo of tectactoe
4.23/5  rDev +2.7%
look: 3.75 | smell: 4.5 | taste: 4.25 | feel: 3.75 | overall: 4.25

Included as an extra from Preismj, much appreciated... this will be my first New Glarus brew. I've been putting them off for longer than I've wanted to. Finally time to try something! This one's got a mild clarity to it - a mixture of bronze and gold. A decently sized light grey-tinted head rests on top, not much lacing left behind.

Jesus Christ, you'd have thought I threw an apple pie in a blender and tossed it in your glass from the aroma - huuuge apple presence. Sweet, sweet apples; pure, raw, savory, mildly tart. Very reminiscent of apple pie filling. Tons of cinnamon, but moderated enough as to not overpower. Some bread and buttery notes from the malt which really give that baked apple pie crust feel to it.

I start picking up some mild port-like and vinous aromas underneath it all - an interesting little guy. Not sure why these are there, but they certainly aren't off-putting. Overall, the aroma is fantastic; very sweet and delectable with a very light tartness and a nice amount of spices. Apple pie, apple cider, applesauce. All day.

I take a taste. Is it apple cider? Not quite. Is it apple juice? Not quite. It takes the good qualities from both and forms them into it's own mold. This is an apple BEER, dammit, and it actually tastes like one. No mistaking this for cider or juice or some bullshit like that. Crushed, juicy apple flavors abound - sweet, with a very light sour tinge on the back end; complete with light cinnamon spices and a solid breadiness, just like the aroma had indicated.

There's a mild astringent spike about halfway through, but it doesn't harm much of anything at all. No port/vinous notes in the flavor at all, which is probably a good thing - I don't want anything to distract from this apple pie orgy in my face right now. There is a very mild alcohol character, which was surprising for being only 4% ABV, but it's far from deal-breaking. Brown sugar, apple, and cinnamon in the finish. Crisp and almost dry with a thin body and medium-heavy carbonation.

Fantastic. Fruit beer done right. Sweet without being too sweet - one of the hardest things to accomplish. I didn't want this one to end - needless to say, I'll be getting my hands on some more New Glarus stuff, pronto. Those guys know what they're doing up there in ol' Wisconsin.

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Photo of MadScientist
4.25/5  rDev +3.2%
look: 4.5 | smell: 4.5 | taste: 4 | feel: 4 | overall: 4.5

This the last bottle of a pack I purchased when I was in Madison eight months ago.
A: This is a bright and clear pale golden beer with a white head that settles to a thin cap and leave some lacing on the glass.
S: You can smell the apple even before you pour it even if your quick about it. The sweet and tart apple aroma is a lot like the apple Jolly Rancher but not artificial. There is a little bit of fruity esters as well.
T: It's balance of juicy, sweet and tart where apples flavor dominate but there is some ale character in there with a slight maltiness. There is a bittersweet medium apple flavor with a very slight hops bitterness no hops flavor.
M: Medium bodied with a moderately light carbonation.
O: There are many ciders that lack the depth and intensity of apple aroma and flavor as found in this beer. The age may have slight softened the beer but it still an outstanding ale.

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Photo of cjn40277
4.25/5  rDev +3.2%

Photo of mykd
4.5/5  rDev +9.2%

Photo of ricksrealm
3.75/5  rDev -9%

Photo of Krafty34
4.25/5  rDev +3.2%

Photo of BeerAdvocate
4/5  rDev -2.9%
look: 4 | smell: 4 | taste: 4 | feel: 4 | overall: 4

Review from BeerAdvocate magazine Vol. III Issue I:

Smells of shortbread and apple taffy. Clear, pale copper color with a solid yet thin white lacing. Big smack of apple character starts off with a puckering juice flavor and then moves toward more of a sweet, mealy apple tone. Clean with a first big step toward sweet from the apple flavor, then some breadiness reminds the taste buds that this is indeed a beer. Hops are hidden with no real bitterness that's noticeable. After the apple flavor tones down more, a baked apple and mild caramel maltiness round the palate out. Finishes semisweet with a faint breath of apple and grain.

Such an amazing beer, a complete contrast to where the more hyped beers are going, yet still extreme in its own way. Easily a stepping stone beer and without a doubt a non-beer drinker's conversion key.

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Photo of Ben7773
4.5/5  rDev +9.2%

Photo of orbitalr0x
3.99/5  rDev -3.2%
look: 3.5 | smell: 4.5 | taste: 4 | feel: 4 | overall: 3.5

One of my few remaining bottles of this pours into my glass a copper orange color with superb clarity and a quarter inch of light fizzy bubbly head on top. Aromas start with big crisp fresh apples. Somewhat spicy and reminiscent of a fresh apple cider on a cool autumn evening. Mild malty background.

First sip brings sweet apple cider flavors rushing across the palate that are quite vibrant. Mellow maltiness as it flows down. A tasty cider beer that's sweet overall with big apple juice flavor.

Mouthfeel is light and smooth with good carbonation....again along the lines of a carbonated apple cider. Overall, a darn tasty apple ale that is straightforward and hits the spot when you need something different. I hope they brew this one again.

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Photo of DaftPatrick
4/5  rDev -2.9%

Photo of jamato3000
4/5  rDev -2.9%

Photo of warnerry
4/5  rDev -2.9%

Photo of Afroman
4/5  rDev -2.9%

Photo of Jared14
4/5  rDev -2.9%

Photo of alarmclock314
4.35/5  rDev +5.6%
look: 4.25 | smell: 4.25 | taste: 4.5 | feel: 4.25 | overall: 4.25

Photo of mverity
4.2/5  rDev +1.9%
look: 3.75 | smell: 4.25 | taste: 4.25 | feel: 4 | overall: 4.25

Pours a clear amber brown with bubbly tan head that settles pretty quickly into a medium tan collar. Aroma is of warm apple cider: brown sugar, cinnamon, some faint clove. Taste is wonderfully the same; apple, sweet caramel and some spice. Fairly carbonated and medium body. Another amazing beer from New Glarus!

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Photo of 77apm
4.25/5  rDev +3.2%

Photo of Hoppity1
4.32/5  rDev +4.9%
look: 3.75 | smell: 4.25 | taste: 4.5 | feel: 4.25 | overall: 4.25

Photo of Jason
3.67/5  rDev -10.9%
look: 3.5 | smell: 4 | taste: 3.5 | feel: 4 | overall: 3.5

12oz brown bottle with no freshness date.

Color: Crystal clear pale brass.

Smell: Apple pie filling, not much else other than that.

Taste & Mouthfeel: Sweet, semi-syrupy sugary mouthfeel. Sweet apple flavor, just like the aroma ... apple pie filling. Hint of cherries and cinnamon from the fermentation. Some cookie dough maltiness within reveals that this is actually a beer. Very sweet finish.

Overall: Awesome to see beers this far down the spectrum of sweetness and even being away from most qualities of beer. You'd think this was a cider though after a few sips some malt comes through.

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Photo of merlin48
4.39/5  rDev +6.6%
look: 3.5 | smell: 4.5 | taste: 4.5 | feel: 4 | overall: 4.5

Twelve ounce bottle designated part of the "Unplugged" series, compliments of dancinwillie. Thanks Sean! Pours a clear golden amber body with a small white head which quickly diminishes to a cap. Some wispy island chain lace graces the tulip glass.

Aroma is mostly apple, fresh McIntosh and Granny Smith, as tantalizing as walking around in an orchard's cellar in late October. A hint of juicy caramel underneath.

Light bodied, crisp and clean, with ample carbonation.

Taste is tart and sweet. McIntosh apples, again, in all their fruity, tasty glory. Early summer green apple notes are present but this is more red apple sweet than tart. Hints of caramel add some dimension. Nothing artificial or cloying. Label says this has a brown ale base, but nothing in taste or appearance bears this out, for what it's worth.

This is more like a cider than a beer, but it is very well done. I could definitely have more than one if these were available outside Wisconsin. Another solid offering from New Glarus.

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Thumbprint Apple Ale from New Glarus Brewing Company
92 out of 100 based on 445 ratings.