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Thumbprint Apple Ale - New Glarus Brewing Company

Not Rated.
Thumbprint Apple AleThumbprint Apple Ale

Displayed for educational use only; do not reuse.

1,067 Ratings
very good

(view ratings)
Ratings: 1,067
Reviews: 412
rAvg: 4.14
pDev: 11.35%
Wants: 310
Gots: 141 | 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
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Ratings: 1,067 | Reviews: 412 | Display Reviews Only:
Photo of garymuchow


4.3/5  rDev +3.9%
look: 3.5 | smell: 4 | taste: 4.5 | feel: 4 | overall: 4.5

Man this brewery does fruit beer well.
Lovely aroma which is strong on apple, but also holds a characteristic from Enigma, so I'm guessing it's the yeast. It's a fruity quality and it's pleasant too.
Not much of a head. Looks a lot like apple juice with less evidence of bubbles.
The complexity of the apples really shows in the flavor. You can get the sense of the different apples used with tart and sweet flavors and just general apple goodness. Nothing is out of balance or excessive. Really nice.
Moderately light feel and low carbonation. Drinks really easily. This beer is dangerously easy to drink, so it's good it has such a low abv. As my buddy said, this goes good in any season and does well warm or cold.
With all this it is distinctive from a cider. Subtler, less strong and more complex (in general).
Thanks Bry.

Serving type: bottle

03-20-2011 22:21:37 | More by garymuchow
Photo of adman08


4.3/5  rDev +3.9%
look: 3.5 | smell: 4 | taste: 4.5 | feel: 4 | overall: 4.5

A-Pours a clear amber color with a hint of copper and a moderate amount of fluffy white head.
S-Aroma of vinegar with a bit of vanilla and sweet apples.
T-Lots of apple flavor with a bit of vanilla. The apple flavor is a combination of both sweet and tart apples.
M-Somewhat creamy feeling. Very sweet, not tart/dry. Decent carbonation.
Overall, outstanding. It's really impressive that they could get this kind of flavor from apple juice since apples don't have a very strong flavor compared to most fruits. The vanilla flavor I noticed reminds me of some barrel aged beers I've had. Another New Glarus fruit beer that you could just sit and sip all day.

Serving type: bottle

05-31-2011 01:28:03 | More by adman08
Photo of homebrew311


4.3/5  rDev +3.9%
look: 4 | smell: 4.5 | taste: 4 | feel: 4 | overall: 5

Yet another NG fruit beer for me. Poured in to NG flute glass.

A: beer pours a very pale amber with little to no head, minimal lacing, crystal clear

S: the initial aroma is very sweet with a nice fresh crisp apple nose, some delicate cinnamon and spice character is in there as well. This smells like a very light and qauffable beer.

T: the taste starts sweet and then comes a bit of tartness similar to green apple, the finish is sweet with some notes of spices. Nice refreshing finish. Unlike other NG fruit beers, this one has no wood character and no lasting tartness. This one is very light and very refreshing.

MF: thin body, high carbonation, crisp and refreshing

D: New Glarus really knows how to preserve the delicate flavors of fruit and translate them to beer. This one nearly taste like a sparkling cider, I almost forgot this was beer.

Serving type: bottle

11-16-2010 06:25:25 | More by homebrew311
Photo of illidurit


4.3/5  rDev +3.9%
look: 3.5 | smell: 4 | taste: 4.5 | feel: 4 | overall: 4.5

RBSG09 bottle at the grand tasting. Pours golden orange with a frothy white head. Big bruised apple aroma with sweet dough. Smells like fresh apple pie. Huge ice cider apple barrage, really robust fresh pressed apples. Almost tastes more like apples than apples do. Pretty delicious.

Serving type: bottle

07-13-2009 07:47:13 | More by illidurit
Photo of CaptainIPA


4.3/5  rDev +3.9%
look: 3.5 | smell: 4 | taste: 4.5 | feel: 4 | overall: 4.5

P: Presented in a brown, 12 oz. bottle with a red-foiled cap and neck. Part of the New Glarus Unplugged series, and purchased @ Sendik's in Mequon.

A: Pours a crystal clear, light amber color with a thin, short-lived head and audible carbonation.

S: Freshly pressed green apples with a waft of cider-like acidity.

T: Tangy and tart apples balanced with a sweet touch of caramel. Unbelievably fresh, handcrafted goodness. Finishes semi-dry.

M: Light bodied and crisp, with a cider-like effervescence throughout.

D: Uncommonly drinkable. If you liked apple juice as a kid, this ale's for you. Grab a 4-Pack while they last.

Serving type: bottle

03-08-2009 21:28:14 | More by CaptainIPA
Photo of kevanb


4.3/5  rDev +3.9%
look: 3.5 | smell: 4.5 | taste: 4.5 | feel: 4 | overall: 4

It pours a really nice sparkling, clear, copper color, lots of bubbles rising showing off a nice amount of carbonation. It has a a slight fizzy white head that dissipates extremely fast leaving a ring of film along the edges of the glass, very appealing and inviting for a lighter fruit beer. The nose is out of control, massive amounts of granny smith apples, faint spices, and a hint of grains, apple pie in a glass. Flavors are spot on, lots of tart green apples and pie spices with a nice smooth biscuit malt finish to remind you this is beer and not cider but stays away from being a gimmicky all out apple pie beer. Nice bubbly texture keeps this easy and refreshing, not overly light but just a lovely session beer.

Verdict: This blows ciders away, massive apple flavors but nice touches with the biscuit and spicing that is so easy to drink, refreshing and flavorful. Such a great take on beer.

Serving type: bottle

12-09-2011 05:01:32 | More by kevanb
Photo of BedetheVenerable


4.3/5  rDev +3.9%
look: 3.5 | smell: 4.5 | taste: 4.5 | feel: 4 | overall: 4

Presentation: Gorgeous, original foiled 12oz brown pop top with a nice ditty about the beer...massive thanks go out to the awesome girl at the brewery who pulled one of these out of the back for us to take home, so we could try it

Appearance: Crystal-clear dark golden beer, bordering on amber, with a thin white cap of large bubbles which soon fades to a thick ring

Smell: Brilliantly and vivaciously fruity...there's six varieties of apples in here and it seems like it; this is like fresh apple cider but kicked up a notch in intensity...fresh and crisp, with not much of any malt aroma in the background...this is almost like an English-style dry cider, but more natural

Taste: INTENSE apple flavors...it's complex, earthy, sweet and tart, delicious...like fresh cider from the apple orchard back home, mixed with the apple juice we all drank as kids, but with the slightest undercurrent of brown sugar/sweet caramel malt. Weird? Yes. Delicious? Yes!

Mouthfeel: Medium bodied and smooth

Drinkability: High; perfect for fall

Conclusion: This is one fantastic fruit beer...in no way is this fake, sugary, or artificial...it's got emphasis on the fruit over the malt for sure, but it's more complex than a cider...feel lucky to have gotten to try this one...paired wonderfully with baked brie with raspberry honey and almonds

Serving type: bottle

08-23-2009 02:19:40 | More by BedetheVenerable
Photo of xnicknj


4.3/5  rDev +3.9%
look: 3.5 | smell: 4 | taste: 4.5 | feel: 4 | overall: 4.5

12oz bottle poured into pint glass - thanks to GraniteSkunk

Pours a clear copper orange with a small, fading head. Disappears into spotty film and a ring around the glass.

A nice strong whiff of apple cider, green apple peel, a hint of spice, and light sweetness.

Plenty of apples and spice right up front. Light caramel sweetness alongside cinnamon and lovely warm flavor. This really reminds me of apple cider and candied apples. Brown sugar and apple peel are also apparent with a hint of breadiness. Finishes crisp and refreshing with some lingering flavor.

Light bodied, bubbly and refreshing. Drinks so well, and the alcohol is nonexistent. For a straight up fruit beer, this pretty much nails the apple flavor, although if you don't like cider, I can see this missing.

Serving type: bottle

12-23-2010 00:58:39 | More by xnicknj
Photo of ClockworkOrange


4.3/5  rDev +3.9%
look: 3.5 | smell: 4 | taste: 4.5 | feel: 4 | overall: 4.5

I believe I got a few bottles of this from hogwildliquor, so thanks! Poured from a 12 ounce bottle into my shaker glass. Appears a crystal clear golden yellow color with barely a finger of eggshell colored foam. The foam dissipates within minutes of the pour settling into a thin layer. Smells of tart apple cider initially and then upon giving the glass a swirl, notes of golden delicious apples come out. The flavor is obviously dominated by apples. Fresh pressed apple cider, apple skins, sweet and tart apples, candied apples, and I swear I smell a touch of cinnamon. Is my brain tricking me into smelling cinnamon? Who knows. This skates a fine line between beer and cider. Very well done. Medium bodied with a light, crisp carbonation, again very cider-like. Check this one out if you have the chance.

Serving type: bottle

03-21-2009 02:18:40 | More by ClockworkOrange
Photo of AltBock


4.3/5  rDev +3.9%
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.

Serving type: bottle

07-29-2013 00:06:16 | More by AltBock
Photo of bnuttz


4.3/5  rDev +3.9%
look: 4 | smell: 5 | taste: 4 | feel: 5 | overall: 4

Well, the third New Glarus fruit beer I have sampled. I went into this with high expectations and here are the results.

appearance: a dark copper color, with little head

smell: sweet, apples, smells so good, like a sweet apple cider. Some tartness can be detected also

taste: Apples all over. Wow, this is great. Very sweet and tart at the same time. Tastes like an apple cider sweetened up. The sweetness does not hide the tartness at all.

Well, New Glarus has done it again, these guys just cannot miss on the fruit beers. True, I probably couldnt drink more than one due to the inherant sweetness. But I must reccomend this beer to everyone that can get their hands on it. It is pricier like all the NG fruit beers, but that is understandable because you can tell they dont skimp on the fruit. Get it while you can!

Serving type: bottle

10-09-2004 00:53:06 | More by bnuttz
Photo of AdmiralDiaz


4.3/5  rDev +3.9%
look: 3 | smell: 4 | taste: 5 | feel: 4 | overall: 3.5

Poured from a 12oz bottle to pint glass.

A: Pours the color of apple cider, with a one-finger head that dissipates quickly leaving almost no remaining head and no lacing.

S: Smells very strongly like apple cider that's very overpowering.

T: I feel like I'm getting repetitive but it tastes like very flavorful apple cider with a small trace of hops, this is by no means a bad thing.

Overall: It's very well carbonated and the taste fits the style very well, although I'm not sure I could have guess that I were drinking a beer if I were blindfolded. As I said it tastes great but isn't something I'd drink a lot of, it would either get overpowering or old.

Serving type: bottle

01-28-2009 06:37:22 | More by AdmiralDiaz
Photo of MaxSpang


4.28/5  rDev +3.4%
look: 4.5 | smell: 5 | taste: 4 | feel: 4.5 | overall: 4

Served in a snifter. Thanks to Duff27 for sending me this fantastic brew!


The beer is a crystal clear yellow-orange color. It reminds me of apple juice if you can believe it. The head was about a finger and almost pure white. It disappeared quickly, and absolutely none of it remained in the glass. There was some nice carbonation bubbles floating up, making this beer look quite inviting.


Tons of - you guessed it - apples. This is intensely strong in a good way. It doesn't smell like cider, but rather a candy-like tart apple. I could swear I was smelling a caramel apple. It's honestly hard to get much else, save some slight spice character. This is similar to Wisconsin Belgian Red or Raspberry Tart in that I find myself going "There's no way this is beer" to myself!


The taste is nowhere near as intense as the smell. That being said, there's a lot of apple flavor in this fella. It's a sweet apple variety rather than a tart Granny-Smith or something. There's a good amount of sweetness, and it reminds me of brown sugar. The caramel flavor comes out but is subtle, and there's a nice little bit of malt right at the end. There's some candy-like sweetness that reminds me of rock candy (not the Belgian kind) or cotton candy. Really incredible flavors coming from this brew.


The carbonation is very close to perfect, and it creates a nice, crisp, dry finish to an otherwise sweet beer. The body is fairly light. It's big enough to be satisfying while being light enough to be refreshing.


I'm going to come out and say it - New Glarus makes the best fruit beers ever. Like Raspberry Tart is to raspberries and Wisconsin Belgian Red is to cherries, this is the truest apple flavor I have tasted and smelled from any beer. This beer would be amazing in the fall... or any other time of the year! If you love apples, you'll love this beer. Period.


Serving type: bottle

02-07-2012 23:33:38 | More by MaxSpang
Photo of jmarsh123


4.28/5  rDev +3.4%
look: 4 | smell: 4 | taste: 4.5 | feel: 3.5 | overall: 4.5

Pours a very clear light brown with a reddish huge. Barely any foam whatsoever.

Smells like a red apple.

Taste kind of like beer mixed with apple juice. I'm assuming this is spot on what they intended since I've never had anything remotely like this before. A little tartness throughout with a very smooth flavor.

Mouthfeel is kind of light, but with a 4.0% ABV that is expected. Not quite as dry as most ciders. Definitely has the apple flavor but is firmly in beer territory.

I love everything from New Glarus. I'm fortunate to have loving relatives in Wisconsin, but would love to have more regular access to their offerings. Very solid lighter beer and very unique.

Serving type: bottle

10-04-2011 00:29:32 | More by jmarsh123
Photo of JCaweinstein


4.28/5  rDev +3.4%
look: 4 | smell: 4 | taste: 4.5 | feel: 4.5 | overall: 4

The first thing that I notice is that it's beautiful copper color and that it's absolutely clear. It's got a cottony white head which is very appealing but it doesn't hang out for too long.
This ale is bursting with apple aromas, both with a hint of sweetness and tartness. Not smelling much in the way of hops and malts but it still smells good.
Apples! There is a slight hint of earthiness which I assume is coming from the hops.
This is a light bodied beer, it's sweet but leaves a nice effervecence touch from the carbonation that follows the apple sweetness beautifully. It's like drinking and apple flavored champaigne.
I really like this beer. I have never tasted a beer quite like this before. As mentioned before it's like drinking a sparkling wine or champaigne. I also like that this is a beer that I could sit down and drink with my wife, as she really enjoys it as well. New Glarus Apple Ale is hard to come by in my neighorhood but I will again go through the effort to find it again.

Serving type: bottle

12-28-2011 04:11:37 | More by JCaweinstein
Photo of woosterbill


4.28/5  rDev +3.4%
look: 4.5 | smell: 4.5 | taste: 4 | feel: 4.5 | overall: 4.5

12oz bottle from the fall of 2010, poured into a Duvel tulip. Thanks to whoever traded me this in person at DLD '11.

A: Brilliant, translucent rust body under an inch of frothy white head. Pretty good retention and light, sticky lace. Very attractive.

S: Interesting. Apple, unsurprisingly, dominates - but it's a decidedly raw apple aroma, not really cider-like at all. It's much more like apple pie filling: a little spicy, a little caramelized, and very enticing. Really good.

T: Opens with sweet apple flesh, followed by cinnamon, caramel, and a clean, tart finish. Apple skin and light bitterness are also present toward the end. Light spiciness on the aftertaste. A bit more tartness would have been welcome, but it's delicious in its own way.

M: Lively, creamy carbonation in a fairly light body. Refreshing.

O: Excellent fruit beer - extremely apple-forward without losing its beer-ness. Terrific.


Serving type: bottle

09-09-2012 21:51:39 | More by woosterbill
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Thumbprint Apple Ale from New Glarus Brewing Company
92 out of 100 based on 1,067 ratings.