Thumbprint Apple Ale - New Glarus Brewing Company

Not Rated.
Thumbprint Apple AleThumbprint Apple Ale

Educational use only; do not reuse.
BA SCORE
92
outstanding

1,472 Ratings
THE BROS
86
very good

(view ratings)
Ratings: 1,472
Reviews: 447
rAvg: 4.13
pDev: 10.41%
Wants: 340
Gots: 201 | FT: 17
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: Ratings & Reviews
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Ratings: 1,472 | Reviews: 447
Reviews by lurpy1:
Photo of lurpy1
4.08/5  rDev -1.2%
look: 2 | smell: 4 | taste: 4.5 | feel: 4 | overall: 4

Growler brought to a recent tasting - filled at Casanova's - I gotta hit this place some day. Nobody in THE WORLD does fruit brew better than NG - don't agree with me? the rankings do - so expectations are high.

The pour is awful. Mountain dew mixed with miller lite mixed with sprite.Seltzery little head on top. Oh well, I want to drink it, not paint it.

Smell brings the sour apple. I suppose there are some beer elements in there.

Taste is just like a jolly rancher sour apple. Delicious! There's a little bit of yeast and malt in the background to remind you you're drinking beer. Even better, this veers far away from the Mike's Hard Nameyourfruit type of flavor.

A little zingy and perhaps overcarbonated, but this is not a beer that could have worked with a thick smooth feel.

Well, Apple Ale looks lousy, tastes great. Insert your own misogynystic joke here, I suppose. I liked this slightly better than Raspberry Tart even, but like RT, due to the sugar/sour experience, I couldn't ever throw down a huge amount at one sitting. But I will be buying it.

More User Reviews:
Photo of CraigP83
4.75/5  rDev +15%
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

Photo of marissarenee
5/5  rDev +21.1%
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.

Photo of DaPeculierDane
4.52/5  rDev +9.4%
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.

Photo of tectactoe
4.23/5  rDev +2.4%
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.

Photo of MadScientist
4.25/5  rDev +2.9%
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.

Photo of BeerAdvocate
4/5  rDev -3.1%
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.

Photo of orbitalr0x
3.99/5  rDev -3.4%
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.

Photo of mverity
4.2/5  rDev +1.7%
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!

Photo of Jason
3.67/5  rDev -11.1%
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.

Photo of merlin48
4.39/5  rDev +6.3%
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.

Photo of badbeer
4.5/5  rDev +9%
look: 4.5 | smell: 4.5 | taste: 4.5 | feel: 4.5 | overall: 4.5

Bottle courtesy of ThomasHardy.

Poured a dark golden amber color with a nice white head that retained quite well. Smell is like smelling a crisp apple. Nice and tart, perhaps like smelling apple juice with slightly overripe apples; almost like stepping into an apple orchard. Taste is like biting into a mixture of different apples and moves into the taste of the apple skins, without the astringent tastes of actually biting apple skins. Light-medium carbonation, lighter side of medium bodied with a crisp, dry finish. Excellent drinkability, I'd be drinking plenty of this if it were still produced. This bottle was three years old and still held up remarkabley well, I can only imagine it was more powerful when it was fresh.

Photo of Mora2000
4.42/5  rDev +7%
look: 4 | smell: 4.5 | taste: 4.5 | feel: 4 | overall: 4.5

Thanks to my brother for sharing this bottle. A fruit beer from New Glarus? Yes please.

The beer pours an amber color with a white head. The aroma is heavy on the apple pie. I get all of the notes I expect, with some cinnamon, apple and bready notes. The flavor also doesn’t disappoint. I get cinnamon, apple and crust notes. This beer tastes like an apple pie. Awesome. Thin to medium mouthfeel and medium carbonation. There are lots of breweries out there, but I don’t think anyone does fruit beers better than our friends from Wisconsin.

Photo of kingcrowing
3.67/5  rDev -11.1%
look: 3.5 | smell: 4 | taste: 3.5 | feel: 4 | overall: 3.5

12oz bottle poured into a Sam Adams perfect pint.

Pours the color of apple juice, very clear with a light amber color but no head. Nose is sweet and appley, like fermented apple juice.

Taste is all apple, very sweet, a little too sweet. The apple is way over the top. Again, it's not bad but it's like fermented apple juice.

Photo of ehammond1
4.21/5  rDev +1.9%
look: 3 | smell: 4.5 | taste: 4.5 | feel: 3.5 | overall: 4

Bottle (2011)

Acquired via trade
Thanks, stig!

Clear goldenrod, slight amber, with a small white head and not a ton of visible carbonation. It actually really closely resembles apple juice, with just a touch of active bubbly.

Incredible aroma of candied caramel apples. This is authentic, juicy, sweet, and fresh smelling. The aroma of rich apple orchards come leaping out of the glass, along with a touch of burnt sugar caramel and toffee aroma. I really like this!

The flavor follows similarly to the aroma, as the authentic, juicy apple flavor is dominant, with just a touch of bitterness, and some sweet candy toffee elements as well.

Thin to medium bodied with low to moderate carbonation.

A really nice apple beer. I wish it was just a touch more bitter and a bit less sweet, but I'd only be nitpicking. I love this stuff!

Photo of MattyG85
4.3/5  rDev +4.1%
look: 4 | smell: 4 | taste: 4.5 | feel: 4 | overall: 4.5

Poured from a 12 oz. bottle into a tall New Glarus Signature Pilsner Glass.

Appearance: Pours copper golden orange with a lot of rising bubbles. About two fingers of off white head that fade into a thin patchy layer. Leaves a good amount of lacing around the glass.

Smell: A very fruity aroma dominated by apples. Apple juices with some light spices including cinnamon, nutmeg, and even a touch of clove. Sweet malts with some hints of caramel and biscuit. Also a light hint of honey. Literally smells like apple cider with real apples. Interesting and good.

Taste: A sweet and fairly tart juicy taste of apples. Big apple presence that tastes like fresh squeezed apple juice. Some spicing blends in with notes of cinnamon, clove, and nutmeg. Soft bready malts with some caramel, toffee, and biscuit. Towards the finish there is a slight tart cherry like taste. Sweetness is balanced. A pretty good taste.

Mouthfeel: Light to medium bodied with a medium to high level of carbonation. Crisp, juicy, and very smooth.

Overall: An interesting and pretty tasty take on a fruit beer. Its like fresh apple juice but has just enough malt presence to make it a beer.

Photo of Beerandraiderfan
3.95/5  rDev -4.4%
look: 4 | smell: 4 | taste: 4 | feel: 3.5 | overall: 4

Poured out looking like a little more champagne-y type of beer, golden with great clarity and tons of bubbles. Aroma was exactly like an apple. Lots of 'em.

Obvious apple taste, but stays away from being cidery, isn't super dry, and cider usually imparts more alcohol because there aren't any hops, less if any malt etc. . .; Nice and relatively complex, you would think straight apple, usually green, but no, this smells like all kinds of different apples. Sure it has a decent amount of sugaryness to it, but so do apples, and this isn't like we're talking Lindeman's level of sugar, its just like an apple, slightly tart and sweet at the same time.

I couldn't see knocking back an entire 4 pack to myself, but I think a few ounces of this stuff during a drinking session really hits the spot. They add enough other stuff to it to make it right up the alley of apple pie (crust, cinnamon).

Photo of rudylaw
4.49/5  rDev +8.7%
look: 3.5 | smell: 4.5 | taste: 4.5 | feel: 4 | overall: 5

Pours a see through amber with orange hue. A nice, ample white head is present.

Smells ike apple juice, some pear... all around orchardy goodness.

Tastes just like Simply Apple apple juice. Nice and refreshingly tart! God, is this amazing.

I could drink a dozen of these. The alcohol is nowhere to be found... apple concentrate beer equals an incredible, unique drinking experience.

Photo of mocktm
3.97/5  rDev -3.9%
look: 3.5 | smell: 4 | taste: 4 | feel: 4 | overall: 4

Thanks to Birchstick for this brew as part of the Phishy BIF, pumped to try out my first New Glarus beer, an unorthodox one at that.

Copper in color with a modest white head. Nothing impressive, like fermented apple juice.

The nose isn't as lively as I envisioned, definite apple with some background spice and a bit of breadiness. Apple pie is probably the best way to put it, although it doesn't overwhelm your senses with its sweetness.

First sip kicks this beer into gear, prominent red delicious apples, caramel and copious amounts of cinnamon. The apple pie hinted at in the nose is in full swing here, almost to the point where I don't even know if I can consider this a beer, it really is more like a cider. As it warms up, the malts become more prevalent, but still, more cider than beer if you ask me.

Medium bodied, very sweet and slightly syrupy. Drinks rather easy, but probably best enjoyed slowly.

Really interesting brew, a bit of a novelty, but definitely something unique and neat to try.

Photo of guntherhophead
3.93/5  rDev -4.8%
look: 4 | smell: 3.5 | taste: 4 | feel: 4.5 | overall: 4

I am actually drinking the New Glarus 'Unplugged' Apple Ale not sure if it's the same.
This has a nice bourbon(Maker's Mark) look to it, a nice amber gold and in my vast experiance, it's a good sign. This pours smooth with a brief, lacey head. Little carbonation a.k.a. not much bubble action but to taste it the carbonation is fine. The smell is sour apple, light citris and a hint of molassas. The taste is really nice with, of course, apple but not overwhelming. Some spice with notes of grain (rice)

Photo of beatenbyjacks
3.43/5  rDev -16.9%
look: 4 | smell: 4 | taste: 3 | feel: 3.25 | overall: 3.5

perhaps I just wasn't in the mood as I LOVE all NG fruit beers, but this one was just a hopped up apple juice to me.

Photo of rhoadsrage
4.1/5  rDev -0.7%
look: 4 | smell: 4 | taste: 4 | feel: 4 | overall: 4.5

(Served in a dimple mug)

A- This beer pours a crystal clear body the color of strong iced tea with a slight red hue to it. There is a spongy white head that is gone after the first sip. The gentle carbonation of big bubbles glides through to the surface.

S- This beer has a fruity pectin aroma with an apple quality and a unsweetened candy jolly rancher note but it is pretty natural apple over all.

T- The fruity taste of pears and tart apples is crisp and has a soft malt flavor to support it. There is a light toasted note to the malt followed by a fruity finish that is a bit more jolly rancher than cider but is a pleasant combination of the two.

M- This beer has a medium mouthfeel with a dry texture and a very slight apple astringency in the finish.

D- This beer has a big apple flavor without being sugary candy or chemical tasting. The apple flavors have some nice bright fresh fruit flavors and a soft bit of support from the malt. This beer is easy to drink and the best example of apple beer I have tried.

Photo of richkrull
4.62/5  rDev +11.9%
look: 4 | smell: 4.5 | taste: 5 | feel: 4 | overall: 4.5

Poured a transparent copper/amber color with a little bit of white head on it. Smell is nice and fruity. The apples really come through. Taste is the same, heavy on the apples with a little bit of malt. Light mouthfeel, this is a smooth, easy drinking beer. Overall another great fruit beer from NG. This is a really good beer.

Photo of Brenden
4.09/5  rDev -1%
look: 3.5 | smell: 4.5 | taste: 4 | feel: 4 | overall: 4

More thanks to BYOFB for a solid brew.

The color is an amber-hues dark gold with perfect clarity but thick enough that it's opaque rather than translucent. A white head begins at about one finger high and recedes to a foam that remains. A bit of lacing is spattered here and there.
The smell is fresh apples with what seem to be mulling spices added, almost like a cider but with a bready malt character that accentuates the impression of apple pie.
The taste follows suit, with fresh apple juice joined by a light spicing tone. The bready malts kick in enough to prove it's a beer rather than a cider without doubt, and a nice caramel flavor pulls through as well.
The feel is nice and crisp without relying on heavy carbonation and without clamping on the tongue and biting down. The body is actually medium, which is nice since so many fruit beers are made as weaker beers. It retains a nice, smooth flow into the finish.
Another very nice beer in the Unplugged series.

Photo of duffcalifornia
4.42/5  rDev +7%
look: 4 | smell: 4.5 | taste: 4.5 | feel: 4 | overall: 4.5

Picked this up as a single bottle.

A: A golden cider color. Much more amber than an actual cider such as Woodchuck with a head about one finger tall that disappeared very quickly.

S: Very strong smell of apples, with hints of vanilla. Very appealing. Also had the same faint aroma found in other fruit ales from NG (specifically the Raspberry Tart).

T: Tastes almost exactly as it smells. Tastes like a sparkling cider, with just the faintest taste of alcohol in the finish, when you taste the ale qualities and that hint of vanilla.

M: fairly thin, with medium carbonation.

D: Extremely easy drinking. Like previously mentioned, it's very difficult to taste any alcohol in this at all, so it goes down easy and smooth.

Am going to have to pick a four-pack of this up before it disappears.

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Thumbprint Apple Ale from New Glarus Brewing Company
92 out of 100 based on 1,472 ratings.