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Thumbprint Apple Ale - New Glarus Brewing Company

Not Rated.
Thumbprint Apple AleThumbprint Apple Ale

Educational use only; do not reuse.

447 Reviews
very good

(Read More)
Reviews: 447
Hads: 1,553
Avg: 4.12
pDev: 19.66%
Wants: 348
Gots: 208 | FT: 13
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
Sort by:  Recent | High | Low | Top Raters | Read the Alström Bros Beer Reviews and Beer Ratings of Thumbprint Apple Ale Alström Bros
Reviews: 447 | Hads: 1,553
Photo of falloutsnow
3.9/5  rDev -5.3%
look: 3 | smell: 4.25 | taste: 4 | feel: 3.5 | overall: 3.75

From: Gift from KR, thanks
Date: None on bottle
Glass: Founders snifter

New Glarus' Apple Ale is an enjoyable fruit beer, which comes across as an alcoholic version of the sparkling apple juices available in the US. Easily drinkable and enjoyable, particularly if you enjoy sweeter, fruitier beers. Similar to New Glarus' other fruit beers, but in more convenient 12oz bottles, I'd get this again, though don't know if I'd go far out of my way to do so.

Pours a 1cm tall head of white foam made up of small-sized bubbles, creating a frothy-appearance. Retention is poor, the foam lasting less than a minute in decline to a thin ring around the perimeter of the glass. Body is a moderately dark golden orange color, with light bringing out bright golden orange hues. Carbonation visible through the slightly hazy (20-30% opacity) body, low in number and activity.

Aroma of tart green apples atop a lightly caramel-sweet malt base, and hints of yogurt-like scents in the background.

Overall flavor is of sweet, light caramel and pale malts mixed with apple cider and a bit of fresh, tart apples. Front of palate tastes of cider-like and light caramel-like sweetness with tart apples. Mid-palate of slightly tart apples mixed with a light caramel-like malt base, at times cider-like and hints of lactobacillus-like tartness. Back of palate is of tart apples, apple cider, light caramel-like sweetness. Aftertaste of lightly tart apple-like sweetness with a bit of grainy malt character.

Beer is light in body, with carbonation of medium-low intensit, resulting in a lightly foamy (1/5) and otherwise smooth (4/5) mouthfeel that's a bit watery overall. Closes dry, with substantial sweetness clinging to the palate.

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Photo of Stevedore
4.02/5  rDev -2.4%
look: 3.75 | smell: 4.25 | taste: 4 | feel: 3.75 | overall: 4

12oz bottle from the recent late 2013 release, poured into an unlabeled snifter today, 2/2/2014.

App- Dark golden-red body, nice one finger white head with solid retention and some lacing.

Smell- Smells a lot like apple cider with a bit of yeast. Tart apples galore. A small bit of sweet caramel malts that help balance the tartness.

Flavour- tastes remarkably like apple cider. Tart apples, sweet caramel malt, small earthy bitterness on the backend.

Mouthfeel- Thinner bodied though not watery, has the same consistency as hard apple cider. Easy to drink, the tartness is dry and refreshing.

Overall- Basically apple cider that happens to be beer. Solid, good for the fruit beer style but not something I'd go out of my way to secure again in the future.

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Photo of rjp217
4.27/5  rDev +3.6%
look: 3.75 | smell: 4.75 | taste: 4.25 | feel: 4 | overall: 4

Poured from the bottle into a pint glass. No date could be found...

A - Hazy orange color with a one finger head that dissipates pretty quickly. No lace left on the glass

S - Apple explosion! Red delicious, Granny Smith, golden yellow all wrapped into one. Candyish. Overpowering apple and fresh

T - Another Apple explosion! A little tart and ciderish. The low ABV is hardly noticeable at all. I could drink this with a smile on my face all day

M - Semi bitter and carbonated. Rolls into the palate smoothly

O - New Glarus just nails fruit beers every time. While not my preferred style, I can totally respect what they do with these because they're delicious and super easy to drink. Apple Ale is a fun, sweet and refreshing take that I really enjoy, well done!

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Photo of deadonhisfeet
4.1/5  rDev -0.5%
look: 4 | smell: 4 | taste: 4.25 | feel: 4 | overall: 4

Poured from a bottle into a D'Achouffe tulip. The pour is a coppery orange with about a finger of white head that quickly dissipates. The nose is very cidery, with notes of apple juice, grapes, and white wine.

The beer has a light-medium body, a nice firm feel, and a sharp, fruity flavor. The flavor follows the nose well and the beer is very cider-like in its profile (minus some tannins). Lots of sweet, refreshing flavors of fresh red apples greet your palate up and down. Not as acidic as I thought it would be, but there is definitely a faint tartness that keeps the sweetness from overpowering the profile. Towards the back of the palate, there is an appetizing, wine-like dryness that readies your mouth for a quick next sip. Very refreshing.

Another outstanding entry in New Glarus' ``Thumbprint'' series. This is the third one I've had and have thoroughly enjoyed each one of them. My hats off to this amazing little brewery that's been around longer than many people realize (and thanks to Ri0 for hooking me up). I really envy our Wisconsin BAs for being able to get these outstanding beers so easily.

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Photo of mjpolzin
3.96/5  rDev -3.9%
look: 3.75 | smell: 4 | taste: 4 | feel: 3.75 | overall: 4

A low abv fruit beer is not my style so I haven't tried any brews out of this category from local brewer, New Glarus. A friend gave me this one to try. It was very, very good and although I still don't think a fruit beer is what I would normally pick, I might have to carve out a place for some New Glarus fruit beers, especially maybe on a hot summer day.

This beer smells and tastes like apples, almost to the point where it is hard to remember you are drinking a beer. The apple flavor was very smooth though and it was enjoyable to drink.

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Photo of gueuzedreg
4.11/5  rDev -0.2%
look: 4.25 | smell: 4.5 | taste: 4 | feel: 3.75 | overall: 4

12oz bottle into a CS snifter

A- Looks like a apple cider. Clear with the thinnest ring of lacing around the glass.

S- Obviously apples explode out of the glass. Slight vinegar smell.

T- The apple is muted perfectly to not make this ale overbearing with sweetness. It is a well rounded apple ale.

M- Pretty thin here as expected. Small amount of carbonation follows down the throat.

O- A very well done apple ale by New Glarus. They have this corner of the market nailed down.

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Photo of Cubatobaco
4.34/5  rDev +5.3%
look: 4.25 | smell: 4 | taste: 4.5 | feel: 4.25 | overall: 4.5

This is going to be a short review. Its pretty much what you'd expect from an Apple ale, but its still is very tasty and refreshing. I could see waking up in the morning and having this with breakfast, if I was on vacation of course.

Golden color, with splotchy lacing, and little to no head. The nose is a brown sugar and of course, sweet apples. Slightly viscous with light carbonation and a lingering finish, but I wish the finish was a little bit longer. I'm going to keep the other three that I haven't tried them when the weather warms up. I will certainly look for more in the future.

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Photo of KFBR392
3.7/5  rDev -10.2%
look: 4 | smell: 4 | taste: 3.5 | feel: 3.5 | overall: 3.75

Appearance: Murky lighter brown color. Finger of head on the pour which was present while drinking. Average to above average active carbonation in glass while drinking.

Smell: Sweet apples jump out. Some doughy, pie crust tones as well. Light airy malt tones. Dominated by the apples though.

Taste: Sweet red apples with some mild tartness make your mouth water. The front is simply wonderful, unfortunately it falls off after that. The apples continue to be the biggest player and just gradually fade away. Some light malt tones come through in the body. The finish is some faint sour apples.

Mouthfeel: Bright on the front then leaves a slight funk on the palate.

Overall: The beginning of this brew is so wonderful but just does not have the gusto that New Glarus other fruit beers have. More of a gimmicky feel then a truly great fruit beer. Would be a good choice for a cider fan.

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Photo of NODAK
4.61/5  rDev +11.9%
look: 4.25 | smell: 4.5 | taste: 4.75 | feel: 4.25 | overall: 4.75

Aroma is of red apple juice....mostly sweet, somewhat tart...but definitely something that would be hard to differentiate from apple juice.

Taste is initially of tasty, sweet apple juice as you'd expect from the store....there is a slight bready quality in the middle that gives the impression this is more of an adult juice, but not much. On the end, there's a hint of tart that wraps it up cleanly and delicious.

Honestly, this couldn't be any more delicious if they tried. It's adult apple juice basically. It's better than any cider I can recall having.

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Photo of Axnjxn
4.45/5  rDev +8%
look: 3.75 | smell: 4.25 | taste: 4.5 | feel: 5 | overall: 4.5

12oz bottle from Copps in Antigo, $9.99 / 4 pack. into a New Glarus flute glass.

pours a light copper color with a half inch bubbly head. the smell is of very ripe apples and fresh apple cider. the taste is almost identical, fresh apple cider with a great tart finish though not sour at all. like tart granny smiths. alcohol is absolutely undetectable. medium to light bodied with perfect carbonation.

overall another absolutely amazing fruit beer from New glarus!

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Photo of joe1510
3.84/5  rDev -6.8%
look: 3.5 | smell: 3.75 | taste: 4 | feel: 3.75 | overall: 3.75

12oz Bottle
$10.69 - 4-Pack
Coffee Grounds - Eau Claire, WI

2012 Bottling

New Glarus's Thumbprint Apple Ale pours with the color of unfiltered cider, hazy, tarnished copper. A surprisingly white head snaps to a thick cap on the pour before quickly fizzing back to a thin skim and ring. Patchy lacing gets left behind that eventually falls back into the body. While it's not the best looking beer it is a good looking cider...

The nose is first and foremost apples. Overripe apples, cider, and even slightly sour apples are all apparent. Don't get me wrong, this is no one sided apple beverage. Clean grain and bready maltiness make for the beer base to the apple accompaniment. The apple is robust and a borders on sharp at times.

Apple is more subdued and even handed than the nose led me to believe. The brown beer base is more pronounced. Soft but noticeable brown bread and a touch of sugary sweetness lay a firm base. Slightly overripe apples and a sparkling juice aspect come along mid-palate. The long finish is all unfiltered cider.

A light and active body make for an amazingly easy drinker. The carbonation and big apple flavors are reminiscent of sparkling apple juice at times. The finish is sweet but nowhere near cloying, again along the lines of cider, very natural sweetness.

Apple Ale is another good beer from New Glarus but, in my opinion, should be done away with in the Thumbprint series. The fruited 750s are much more enjoyable and the limited number of Thumbprint releases would be better served leaving this out of the yearly lineup.

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Photo of PsilohsaiBiN
4.63/5  rDev +12.4%
look: 4 | smell: 4.75 | taste: 4.75 | feel: 4.5 | overall: 4.5

Appearance: Looks like apple juice with some carbonation and a bit of head.

Smell: Smells like fresh apple cider, just amazing.

Taste: To simplify, this tastes just like a perfect apple cider/beer hybrid.

Mouthfeel: Modest carbonation with a light-medium body. Very drinkable.

Overall: I can get used to this New Glarus fruit beer thing, haven't been let down yet.

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Photo of jbaker67
4.24/5  rDev +2.9%
look: 4 | smell: 4.25 | taste: 4.25 | feel: 4.25 | overall: 4.25

Pours an ever so hazy golden amber with some flimsy white edging. Aroma is clearly apples, a nice blend of tart and sweet. A bit of wheat and spice on the end. Taste is similar, very tasty and fresh apple juice with a grainy/wheat finish and a lingering sweetness. Crazy delicious. Crisp and medium bodied.

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Photo of Etan
3.87/5  rDev -6.1%
look: 4 | smell: 3.75 | taste: 4 | feel: 3.75 | overall: 3.75

12oz from the recent release into a snifter.

A: Pours at a golden-amber with a small white head.

S: Smells of sweet apples, juicy, mild spiced esters.

T: Taste brings cidery apple, with some bready notes and sweet wheat in the finish.

M: Light-bodied with moderate carbonation.

O: Very much like Dan's other fruit beers, sweet and clean. This one is somewhat cider-like but with palpable notes of malted wheat.

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Photo of magictacosinus
4.2/5  rDev +1.9%
look: 4 | smell: 4 | taste: 4.25 | feel: 4.5 | overall: 4.25

Thanks, amerak! Poured out of a 12oz bottle into a flute glass.

Pours a tanned orange amber, complete with a ton of carbonation as well as a decent half finger of frothy white foam at the top. Lots of bubbles glue themselves to the bottom of the glass at first while the lager-like burst of carbonation follows. Leaves behind some decent stickiness against the glass. Looks a lot like good quality cider.

Oh, yes, this is definitely an apple forward beer at the aroma, but that definitely comes as no surprise, what with given the borderline cider/beer hybrid that this aims to be. Vivid notes of fresh pressed apples, alongside cinnamon, brown sugar, and caramel. Smells just like an apple pie, in certain respects. There's some stone fruit in there, but it's indistinguishable underneath the spiced apple-y flavor. This is very lovely stuff, even if it's rather one dimensional.

Gosh, talk about a beer that sort of splits my brain in half in the midst of its hybrid format. I'm a huge cider lover, particularly of the drier, mustier kinds that you get in places such as Normandy or parts of England. This is happily far less on the sweet, candied side, and reaches more towards this cider flavor that pleases me the most. Notes of yellow and red apples explode in the mouth, followed by a touch of caramel from the malts. At the finish, however, some diverse spices come in ranging from cinnamon to tamarind. Some other fruit notes open up, including nectarines and tangerines. Really flavorful stuff. Finishes slightly dry and musty, with a brief hint of tartness. The carbonation is generous here, and melded with the thickened, creamy feel of the beer, it really brings forth the rich tasty fruit and malt notes. Ridiculously refreshing as any good cider, and crisp and unique as a good session ale should be.

Another win for New Glarus, and it's no surprise it's yet another fruit infused beer. I could hoard this stuff in my house. It's flavorful and simple, but there are some undeniable complexities that come straight from the yeast and brewing process used. Beers already taste good when there's actual fresh fruit added, and they taste even better when there's a spicy, funky yeast to back it up. Wonderful, tasty stuff overall.

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Photo of NCalement
4.24/5  rDev +2.9%
look: 4 | smell: 5 | taste: 4 | feel: 4 | overall: 4

12oz bottle poured into a snifter glass.

A- Pours a translucent amber with active white head that dissipate quickly, leaving a nice ring of lacing.

S- Apples, lots and lots of apples. Reminds me of apple bubble yum. I could smell this for awhile and enjoy every sniff.

T- Smells like green apples, taste like red apples. Kinda sweet on the back end but very refreshing flavors. Adult apple juice.

M- Dances across the palate. Very active and crisp.

O- Dont have much to compare this one to but its spot on with what it clams to be. Lots of apples, crisp and juicy. A apple ale.

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Photo of zookerman182
4.39/5  rDev +6.6%
look: 4.25 | smell: 4.5 | taste: 4.5 | feel: 4 | overall: 4.25

Appearance is a golden red color....like apple juice.
Aroma is farm fresh apples, reminds me of a farm. So fresh smelling.
Flavor is apple cider but light enough to be perfect. There's a crisp fresh apple taste with mild spice. Perfect balance here.
Mouthfeel is nicely carbonated and perfectly dry.
Flavor hits then goes away.
I really enjoy this and want to try more new glarus.

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Photo of Fcolle2
4.45/5  rDev +8%
look: 4.25 | smell: 4.25 | taste: 4.5 | feel: 4.75 | overall: 4.5

Pours very slightly hazy and golden with light copper hues. Head is about half a finger, off white and has decent retention. Lots of bubbles floating up from the etchings in my glass.

Smell has bright fresh apple aromas. Very similar, nearly identical to apple cider. Very slight must at the end.

Taste on this is great. Fresh apple cider like flavors forward that are light and refreshing. Light to moderate sweetness that is not overpowering by any means. Slight acidity in the finish helps balance the crisp sweet flavors a little.

Mouthfeel is great. Light crisp highly refreshing feel. Tons of carbonation helps the sweet flavors remain incredibly crisp with tons if bubble assaulting your tongue.

Overall awesome apple ale. Better then any apple cider I have had.

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Photo of Karl_M
5/5  rDev +21.4%

This is not my mug of beer but I have to admit it was very pleasing to drink the 2013 Apple Ale from New Glarus.

The first nose was nothing but bright, crisp apples and a strong musty undertone.

The first taste was nothing but sweet, slightly tart, fresh apples. The finish was still crisp and sweet apples that rounded off at the very end to give a good ale finish.

The color was blood-tinged apple juice and very clear. The head was paper thin.

The cost of this brew at around $9 a four pack is OUTRAGEOUS especially coming in at around 4 or 5 % ABV but its worth a try.

This is what I have always expected from any hard cider but have never found... Good body, sweet fruit, totally pleasing.

The ladies AND guys will be surprised at how good it tastes.

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Photo of Jho3325
4.42/5  rDev +7.3%
look: 4.5 | smell: 4.25 | taste: 4.5 | feel: 4.25 | overall: 4.5

Pours a light apple cider hue with a surprisingly lasting head. The smell is all apple and is crisp and fresh. While this ale has a fresh apple taste, it is well balanced with some tartness. There is a lingering beer taste underneath the heavy apple flavor. It is well carbonated as expected. Overall, this is a great apple ale - fresh, sweet but balanced - but without letting you forget that you are drinking a beer. Another fine brew from New Glarus.

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Photo of jmp3
3.4/5  rDev -17.5%
look: 3.5 | smell: 3.5 | taste: 3.5 | feel: 3 | overall: 3.25

A fun drinking beer lots of sweetness. Sour apple aroma with slight sour taste more sweet tasting to me. Little to no hop aroma and taste. Slight cloudness in glass. Might be fun to mix this with a sour lambic to see what you got. Over a refreshing beer that I would try again.

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Photo of andrewinski1
3.45/5  rDev -16.3%
look: 3.25 | smell: 3.75 | taste: 3.25 | feel: 3.5 | overall: 3.5

Poured into a pint glass. The color is medium orange with nice melon hues. There is a small off-white head. Not super clear but no haze.

The aroma is straight up apple juice. I don't pick up much of anything else at first, but after drinking for a bit I get some bready yeast in the aroma as well.

The taste is somewhat cidery, but I think it tastes more like regular apple juice. There is some breadiness in the start; the finish is all juice.

This is pretty unique and fun to try. It's not entirely my cup of tea, but I can see this being a popular choice for many people.

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Photo of harrymel
3.9/5  rDev -5.3%
look: 3.25 | smell: 3.75 | taste: 4 | feel: 4 | overall: 4

This year 2013, I think

Pours a hazy gold with a broken white sheet atop. Smells like apples! And maybe a bit of cherry juice as well. Flavor is sweet apples with just a hint of tartness on 'em, some caramelized sugars, some bits of grain. Medium on thin with prickly low-mod carb and a semi dry finish. I like this beer, I bet it's cheaper than the Lindeman's also. I wish there were more of these apple ales, I quite like them when done well.

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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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Photo of angrybabboon
4.21/5  rDev +2.2%
look: 4 | smell: 4.25 | taste: 4.25 | feel: 4 | overall: 4.25

Cheers to Goblinmunkey7 for giving me a bottle of this gem. I haven't even tasted it, but considering this is a fruit beer by New Glarus, I assume it's awesome.

Consumed 7/18/13

Appearance: Pours a hazy blend of copper and medium amber - some nice clarity around the edges - medium sized, creamy, off-white head - leaves some nice streaks of lacing

Smell: Baked and cooked apples, like a homemade apple pie splattered with apple sauce - cinnamon, nutmeg, and other spices - fresh-pressed apple cider (definitely not hard cider) - esters common in New Glarus fruit beers - very sweet fruit - some sweet, pale malts, like apple cider

Taste: Not far off from throwing apple pie in a blender, or at least apple pie filling - sweet, cooked apple flesh and some apple skin - apple juice, apple cider, and apple sauce - a light touch of spice, particularly cinnamon, but not as much as I thought from the aroma - sweet, light, pale malts, like pie crust sprinkled with sugar - a bit too sweet overall, but very interesting

Mouthfeel: Medium-ish body, lots of residual sugars, nicely carbonated, smooth

Overall: I want some apple drink. It's green!

Another great fruit beer from New Glarus, no surprise there. This is really sweet, and could probably benefit from some tartness. Regardless, the amount of apple flavor here is amazing. I hope to drink this again. Repeatedly. Perhaps out of a juice box.

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Thumbprint Apple Ale from New Glarus Brewing Company
92 out of 100 based on 447 ratings.