1. Get 12 issues / year of BeerAdvocate magazine for only $9.99!
  2. The wait is over! Download the BeerAdvocate app on iTunes or Google Play now.

Thumbprint Apple Ale - New Glarus Brewing Company

Not Rated.
Thumbprint Apple AleThumbprint Apple Ale

Displayed for educational use only; do not reuse.
BA SCORE
92
outstanding

1,344 Ratings
THE BROS
86
very good

(view ratings)
Ratings: 1,344
Reviews: 424
rAvg: 4.13
pDev: 10.9%
Wants: 329
Gots: 174 | FT: 12
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:
No notes at this time.

(Beer added by: Skidz on 09-25-2004)
Beer: Ratings & Reviews
Sort by:  Recent | Likes | High | Low | Top Raters | Read the Alström Bros Beer Reviews and Beer Ratings of Thumbprint Apple Ale Alström Bros
Ratings: 1,344 | Reviews: 424 | Display Reviews Only:
Photo of TheManiacalOne
3.65/5  rDev -11.6%
look: 3.5 | smell: 4 | taste: 3.5 | feel: 4 | overall: 3.5

Acquired via trade from MilwaukeeCrusher so a big “Thank You” goes out to him. Poured from a 12oz bottle into a US tumbler pint glass.

A: The beer is a light gold color, with a thin white head that fades quickly and leaves a thin lace on the glass.

S: The aroma contains a lot of sweet apples, some light caramelized malts and a touch of hops.

T: The taste likewise starts out with a very strong sweet apple flavor that dominates. I had expected it to be more sour than sweet but I’m not disappointed either. The malt character is hearty but not too heavy and there’s a very mild hops presence that brings a decent balance. The after-taste is sweet.

M: Smooth and crisp, medium body, medium carbonation, finish is clean.

O: Tasty, goes down easily, not too filling, very mild kick, good representation of style, this is a decent beer to drink for a while if you’re in the mood for the sweet apple flavor.

Photo of Kegatron
3.98/5  rDev -3.6%
look: 3.5 | smell: 3.5 | taste: 4 | feel: 4 | overall: 4.5

12 oz bottle into a flute. Big thanks to Deuane for hooking me up with a bottle of this.

Pours a clear, effervescent gold, with 1 1/2 fingers of rigid brite-white head. Retains with a nice creamy look around the edges, staying strong, and leaving some quality patchy lace back. The aroma is straight up apple juice in the nose. This is a bit cider-like as well, with the tartness of the apples playing nicely with the sugary sweetness of the wheat. Bit of floral hops and spice make themselves known in a more subtle fashion. I'm not sure what the ABV is, but I swear that I'm getting just a touch of warmth in here as well.

The taste is crisp apple flavors, with a delicious malt base of sugar and bread. Spicy Noble hop character pulls up the back, tasting a bit like the cinnamon topping on this piece of apple pie. The mouthfeel is light-medium bodied, with a crisp and bubbly pop to it, and man, does this go down easy or what? I literally think that I could have used 2 bottles of this for the review.

I love how they used the hops and spice to counteract and compliment both the tartness and sweeter components of these fruit beers, and this is just another great example of that. They really need to make this a fall seasonal during apple season. Very nice!

Photo of jlindros
4.2/5  rDev +1.7%
look: 4 | smell: 4.5 | taste: 4 | feel: 4 | overall: 4.5

Thanks to rudzud for sharing.

Pours a very light fizzy head, semi hazy golden orange carrot color.

Nose is like sparkling apple juice, fresh apple cider, quite effervescent, hint cinnamon like spices, spiced cider, touch apple pie sweetness too.

Taste fizzy, big apple flavor, apple cider and again sparkling apple juice, sharp acid bite, apple pie and cider mulling spices, tart apple flesh. Finish is tart and dry, tart apple lingering, bit of acidity, more apple cider and spices, and dry mouth smacking tart crab apple like finish.

Mouth is lighter bodied, lots of carbonation, effervescent.

Overall pretty good, one of the better straight up fruit beers I've had. Great apple flavor, effervescent sparkling apple, light mulling spices and sweetness, overall quite nice. I could drink tons of these.

Photo of XmnwildX12
4/5  rDev -3.1%

Photo of oline73
4.03/5  rDev -2.4%
look: 4.5 | smell: 4 | taste: 4 | feel: 4 | overall: 4

Poured from a bottle into a Chimay glass.

Appearance: Pours a slightly cloudy amber color with a finger of fluffy, off white head that fades to a small layer on top of the beer.

Smell: This beer is what we thought it was. Smells of sweet natural apples. There is a mild tartness as well.

Taste: Again, the star of this show is the apples. Kind of reminds me of a hybrid between apple cider and apple juice. The natural flavor is very natural. There is some sweetness along with a tartness. The finish is sweet.

Mouthfeel: Medium body with tingly carbonation and a finish that feels like it will be dry, but it really isn't.

Overall: I don't know how New Glarus does it, but their fruit beers are great. This is another success from this brewery. I would have another.

Photo of MasterSki
4.4/5  rDev +6.5%
look: 4.5 | smell: 4 | taste: 4.5 | feel: 4.5 | overall: 4.5

Shared a bottle with the in-laws while eating apple crisp - how appropriate!

A - Not sure how to evaluate this, as I don't have much frame of reference. It looks like carbonated apple juice, but with a two-fingered head and spotty lacing. The rising bubbles settle down pretty quickly after pouring.

S - It smells like fermented juice. I suppose that's the point, isn't it? There are some faint spices in there, kind of like an apple pie.

T - Tart and sweet at the same time. Really pleasant - it tastes like cider but with the slightest hint of malt.

M - The carbonation gives it a nice zing. Smooth and creamy, just like good cider.

D - If you love cider this is great for sessions, if you don't it still might be nice for the occasional try.

Another great New Glarus fruit brew! Wish I'd grabbed more of this when I was in Milwaukee.

Photo of drabmuh
3.4/5  rDev -17.7%
look: 4 | smell: 4 | taste: 3 | feel: 3.5 | overall: 3.5

Yuck...what happens when you try to make a cider into a beer? this happens.

Beer is amber and clear with no head, no lacing and low carbonation, this is OK i guess.

Beer smells like apples and spice, this is more upsetting if this isn't what i expected.

Beer is thin to medium bodied and apply. Its sweet and cidery with mild spice and some grain acidity at the end. It's not super enjoyable as I hoped. I doubt I would drink more than the 12 ounces I had.

Photo of feloniousmonk
3.65/5  rDev -11.6%
look: 3 | smell: 3.5 | taste: 4 | feel: 3 | overall: 3.5

Cooked apple aroma escapes on uncapping the bottle...let's pour first before further comment...amber hue, apple cider-y, slightly hazy, mostly clear, without a head to speak of...nose is pungent, snappy, appley all the way, tart, and hot...Taste? Sour twang at first, then sweetness ensues...bracing mouthfeel, then mellow...juicy, high carbonation, tasty, tingly...though it fades a bit toward the end...not bad. No, actually, it's okay.
Not what I like, but it's sure to suit plenty of tastes out there...here's to them!

Photo of MarkyMOD
4.25/5  rDev +2.9%

Photo of beernads
4/5  rDev -3.1%

Photo of mdfb79
4.23/5  rDev +2.4%
look: 4 | smell: 4 | taste: 4.5 | feel: 4 | overall: 4

From 02/19/12 notes. Received from JYounger30 in the Birthday BIF; thanks Jay! Love the fruit beers I've had from NG so far so have been wanting to try this one. 12 oz. bottle poured into my Duvel tulip. 2010 vintage.

a - Pours a clear golden color with one inch of white head and moderate to high carbonation evident.

s - Smells of apple juice, cider, green apples, and light bread and grains. A ton of apples, very nice.

t - Tastes of green apples, cider, apple juice, slightly tart or sour green apples, light spice, and grains. Again, a really great tasting beer.

m - Light body and high carbonation. Crisp and dry.

o - Overall I thought this was another good fruit beer from NG; I've yet to have a bad one from them. This was exactly what I was expecting/hoping for, as it tastes a lot like hard cider/apple juice. While I enjoyed the NG Cran-bic more, if I could buy any of these fruit beers off the shelf I'd always have some in my fridge.

Photo of jwc215
3.75/5  rDev -9.2%

Pours apple juice/apple cider colored with a thin wispy head. Not much lacing.

The smell is of apple cider with a hint of cinnamon.

The taste of apple is sweet with some sour. A touch of caramel, bread and a hint of cinnamon mix in.

While it is sweet, there is a touch of sour and a hint of spicing. Reminds me of baked apples.

A beer with strong cider character.

Photo of Mora2000
4.43/5  rDev +7.3%
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 Rochefort10nh
4/5  rDev -3.1%

Photo of kojevergas
4.2/5  rDev +1.7%
look: 3.5 | smell: 4.5 | taste: 4 | feel: 4.25 | overall: 4.5

12 fl oz brown glass bottle with appealing label and red foil-ed over iconic green/gold pry-off pressure cap acquired from the extremely generous Duff27 in a trade and served into Cantillon stemware in low altitude Austin, Texas. Reviewed live. Expectations are sky-high given the brewery, which is undoubtedly amongst my favourites in the U.S.A. Thumbprint series. No ABV is listed on the bottle.

Served cold - straight from a quick stint in my freezer - and allowed to warm over the course of consumption. Side-poured with standard vigor as no carbonation issues are anticipated.

A: No bubble show forms as it's poured.

Pours a half finger wide head of dull off-white colour. Creaminess is decent. Lacks frothiness. Disappointingly thin. Head retention is bad - about 45 seconds. No lacing clings to the sides of the glass as the head recedes.

Body colour is a clear translucent pale copper of good vibrance. Clean. No floating yeast particles are visible. Appears well-carbonated.

While the head is disappointing, overall the appearance is good for an apple ale. Sure, it's not unique or special, but it looks as it should. I'm optimistic.

Sm: Fuck. This has the best damn apple aroma I've ever encountered - has a fresh crisp orchard apple character that's to die for. Redolent of the finest fresh squeezed apple juice and artisanal French cidre. Sweetness is perfect, and it's just juicy enough. It never feels too cidery, though - it always comes off like a beer.

I also pick up on clean barley, a kiss of graham cracker, and some apple pie spice.

The apple aromatics are just perfect. I'm not sure an apple beer could have much of a better aroma. This tops even Ephemere. So damned juicy.

Clean; no yeast character or alcohol is detectable. It has no noticeable hop profile.

An extremely inviting aroma of moderate strength.

T: Has a fantastic apple profile with surprising depth of flavour. Crisp orchard apples, fresh apple juice, refined apple cidre, subtle hints of apple pie spice (kisses of cinnamon and nutmeg are the only ones I can identify). It's got some crystal malt character to fill out the malty build. Clean barley. A biteen of graham cracker. This is just plain delicious.

Sure, it's not the most complex or intricate flavour profile. But it's an impeccably balanced one and it's loaded with nuance. I'd safely call this flavour profile gestalt; I can't imagine removing or adding any notes without negatively affecting the quality. It's meant to be a simple straightforward apple beer, but boy does it boast impressive depth of flavour. Good duration and intensity of flavour.

The subtle tartness is divine, and works beautifully in this flavour profile. Subtle hints of brown sugar. This is one of the freshest tasting beers I've ever tried.

No yeast character, hops, or alcohol come(s) through.

Mf: Has near perfect crispness, if slight overcarbonation. Smooth and wet. Smacky and refreshing. Fresh, clean, and refreshing as hell. Has a near perfect medium body and extremely apt thickness. Fantastic presence on the palate. This texture feels custom-tailored specifically to this beer's taste. I'm extremely impressed.

Not oily, gushed, hot, astringent, harsh, or rough.

Dr: I forget how great New Glarus is, and then I'm reminded almost every time I try a beer of their's I haven't had before. This is flat-out fantastic stuff for the style, and beats even Ephemere in this category. I think it's safe to say this is the best apple ale I've ever had, and New Glarus continues to defend their well-earned reputation as the best brewer of fruit beers in the world. This is obscenely drinkable, and if you offered me a keg of it I'd fork over the deposit right now on the spot. One of the most refreshing and enjoyable ales out there. Artfully executed and of commendable quality. I'd recommend friends try this ASAP - even if they have to go out of their way to seek it out. Bravo, New Glarus.

Huge thanks to Duff27 for the opportunity to try this gem!

High A-

Photo of Halcyondays
4.88/5  rDev +18.2%
look: 3.5 | smell: 5 | taste: 5 | feel: 4.5 | overall: 5

12 oz. bottle,

A: Pours amber with a mild white head, limited lacing, solid head retention.

S: Winter spice, green and yellow apples, mulled cider; decadent, like the best apple pie you've ever smelled.

T: Pretty much with the nose. More cider like than beer. Beautiful winter spice/cinnamon with the true apple flavour, absolutely delicious.

M: Light-bodied, crisp, soft carbonation with a very mild acidity.

D: As with the other New Glarus fruit beers I've had this is incredible. The top 4 fruit beers of my life, they're all New Glarus, can't say more than that.

Photo of imperialking
4/5  rDev -3.1%

Photo of orangesol
4.21/5  rDev +1.9%
look: 4 | smell: 4.25 | taste: 4.25 | feel: 4 | overall: 4.25

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

12 oz bottle.

Pours a clear, light amber golden color, well carbonated with a wispy white head. Nose is heavy on green apple, slightly tart, bready, mild honey, and leafy earth. Flavor is surprisingly well balanced between a golden ale, bready malt and dough, with a slightly less artificial than Jolly Rancher green apple sweet/tart flavor. Medium full body, strong carbonation and a sticky, doughy finish. Wasn't pleasantly surprised to enjoy the entire bottle alone, despite some initial hesitation that this would turn too cloying.

Photo of duceswild
4.25/5  rDev +2.9%

Photo of stakem
4/5  rDev -3.1%
look: 4 | smell: 4 | taste: 4 | feel: 4 | overall: 4

I appreciated the opportunity to try this one and thank Bmoyer0301 busting this brew out on 12/3/10.

Poured into a snifter, this brew appears a crystal clear orange color with a thin film of white bubbles that hangs around the inside perimeter of the glass. Swirls and sips produce some spotty lace work on the glass.

The smell of this brew is primarily fresh apple juice with some faint spices akin to cinnamon and some depth of apple skin, not just flesh.

The taste of this brew is all apples, apple juice via sweet concentrated form. Drinking this brew is easy going if you approach it like you are enjoying a hard cider, it is slightly acidic with does a decent job at balancing out the sweetness of this offering. A long lingering aftertaste of apple is left inside the mouth.

Medium to light in body with a modest level of carbonation. Quite easy drinking, if you enjoy apples or hard cider this is certainly a brew to give a try. First impressions of this brew are pretty hard to swallow. This brew was quite tasty in a back-sweetened cider sort of way.

Photo of woodychandler
3.9/5  rDev -5.6%
look: 4 | smell: 4 | taste: 4 | feel: 3 | overall: 4

My crazy, sexy, cool cellar continues to yield forgotten treasures. Once I have reduced the backlog, I will not allow that kind of thing to happen again. In the meantime, here goes ...

From the label: "Apple Ale sings with the fresh crisp taste of Wisconsin Apples. Our Brewmaster begins with a brown ale base employing Wisconsin famed wheat and a blend of Cortland, Macintosh and Jonathan apples. Our apple growing friends squeeze them especially for this brew."; "Expect this Ale to pour a beautiful copper color. The fresh bouquet will rise to meet you even before the glass touches your lips. So be sure to sip slowly and enjoy the fruits of a Wisconsin Harvest."; "Vielen Dank!"; "[undersigned] Daniel & Deborah Carey".

I employed a very gentle pour, resulting in mere wisps in terms of head. Color was a slightly hazy light-brown with amber highlights. It did, indeed, resemble freshly squeezed apple juice. Nose was very much driven by the apple juice employed in its production. Mouthfeel was on the thin side and the taste was of lightly spiced apple juice. If I had the proper equipment, I might consider heating this in a double boiler as a sort of mulled cider-type of drink. Finish was a pleasant admixture of apple and spice, the latter most likely cinnamon. Very tasty cold and would be welcomed as a hot drink also.

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

Poured into chalice

Pours a light fizzy head that fades down to nothing instantly. Some active carbonation in the glass. Color is an absolutely clear pink hued peach. Despite the no head, it is a gorgeous looking beer.

Aroma: Dry, crisp golden delicious apples. It smells like an apple harvest or something. Apple sauce flavors. Apple cider. Pretty much all apples.

Taste: This beer tastes like some of NG sours' base brown ale. However, it has none of the sour components, but rather apple flavors and some dry spice. It is pretty much straight up apples. It is pretty good.

Mouthfeel: Smooth, crisp, and refreshing. Light bodied with a low to medium amount of carbonation. Ends fairly dry, but clean.

Overall, it is another solid brew from NG. It is pretty easy drinking and I will have no problem with this bottle and probably want another. Awesome stuff.

Edit: As I get further into the bottle it becomes harder to drink due to the sweetness.

Photo of Gonzoillini
4.25/5  rDev +2.9%

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

A: Pours a clear amber color with a small white head that reduces to a ring of foam around the top. Bits of foamy lace on the sides.

S: Apple pie, nice sweet apples and cinnamon. A bit of cider as well.

T: Nice apple flavor with some light caramel and some nice spice. A bit of cinnamon and some light malt. Not overly complex, but tasty.

M: Light to medium bodied with light carbonation.

O: Very easy drinking. Thought the aroma was better than the flavor profile, and wish it tasted like it smelled. But it was still good and a beer I would gladly drink again.

Thumbprint Apple Ale from New Glarus Brewing Company
92 out of 100 based on 1,344 ratings.