Nelson Sauvin Single Hop IPA | Mikkeller ApS

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Nelson Sauvin Single Hop IPANelson Sauvin Single Hop IPA
256 Ratings
Nelson Sauvin Single Hop IPANelson Sauvin Single Hop IPA

Brewed by:
Mikkeller ApS

Style: American IPA

Alcohol by volume (ABV): 6.90%

Availability: Rotating

Notes / Commercial Description:
Brewed at De Proef Brouwerij, Lochristi-Hijfte, Belgium.

Ingredients: Water, malts (pilsner, cara-crystal and munich), hops (nelson sauvin) and yeast.

Added by ClockworkOrange on 03-14-2009

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Ratings: 256 |  Reviews: 181
Photo of ToasterChef
4/5  rDev -0.2%
look: 4 | smell: 4 | taste: 4 | feel: 4 | overall: 4

Reviewed from my notes. Served in a flight of three Mikkeller single hop IPAs. This beer, made with New Zealand hops, has a deep burnt orange color. It's capped by a thin head of tiny tan bubbles. The liquid appears hazy and opaque. The aroma is crisp and cool and full of citrus hops. The first thing I taste when I sip the beer is a toffee malt flavor. It quickly gets overcome by a sweet bitter pine taste. The finish is a subtle but sharp bitter aftertaste. It has a medium body and average carbonation. The coat is sticky but isn't overly sweet. It feels fuller that it actually is. This beer is more of a sipper than the Simcoe Single Hop IPA, due to its heavier body. I still find it to be quite drinkable. I wouldn't want to more than on 12oz pour in a row, though.

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Photo of Arenbeer
4.32/5  rDev +7.7%
look: 4 | smell: 4.5 | taste: 4.5 | feel: 4 | overall: 4

Thanks to Abrand for this one!!!!

12oz bottle into a snifter glass.

A- Pours a solid brown with a slight orange hue. On top is a thick and fluffy yellowish off-white head. Leaves pretty decent lacing.

S- Sweet caramel malts with a decent amount of citrus tropical smelling hops. Also very spicy smelling, definitely different than all the other single hop mikkellers.

T- Unlike the fruity smell the flavor is more piny and the caramel malts come out more. Still a decent amount of citrus in there though and definitely some spice.

M- Medium bodied with a strong bitter dryness in the finish. Pretty perfect amount for my palate.


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Photo of blackie
4.2/5  rDev +4.7%
look: 4.5 | smell: 4.5 | taste: 4 | feel: 4.5 | overall: 4

a: medium amber in color, topped with a creamy head with quality retention

s: moderate caramel body - nice level of malty sugars, but well balanced with a rich pine and tropical hop nose

m: smooth, creamy carbonation, medium body

t: sweet, moderately caramelized barley sugars, pine and tropical fruit hops

d: easy, a really nice ipa, my favorite between this and the Warrior

snifter, ChurchKey, DC

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Photo of gford217
4.57/5  rDev +14%
look: 4 | smell: 4.5 | taste: 4.5 | feel: 4.5 | overall: 5

On tap at the Brick Store as part of Mikkeller Mayhem.

No different than the rest of the appearance front - light hazy amber, small cream-colored head, little bit of lacing.

Unlike most of the others, the aroma is distinctive and complex. There is a light grape-like fruitiness with some other juicy citrus. There is also a solid earthy spiciness in the nose and some toasted malts as well.

The taste is more of the same. Quick shot of citrus hops up front but with a dry, herbal twist. The finish is the most wine-like of all the IPAs - dry, fruity with a bit of spice.

The mouthfeel is crisp, clean and well-carbonated. It's got a dry spiciness on the palate.

This was the winner of the day for me, the most complex of the IPAs, very drinkable and outstanding all around. It's the only one that I tried today that stands up to the top IPAs out there.

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Photo of drabmuh
4.12/5  rDev +2.7%
look: 4 | smell: 4.5 | taste: 4 | feel: 4 | overall: 4

I had 10 of these side by side on draft at Churchkey the other night -- nugget, amarillo, cascade, warrior, simcoe, chinook, eat kent, centennial, tomahawk, and Nelson Sauvin. It was a great experience to get all 10 of them side by side. Thank you Mikkeller for this great experiment in single hop IPAs. My reviews of these 10 beers may seem slightly redundant but they are different.

Beer was orangish and slightly burnt color. There is an overall slight haze to the beer. Carbonation is moderate and there forms a white head of medium to small bubbles that leaves a lot of lacing on the glass.

Never brewed with this hop either...WHOA! STRONG pineapple aroma, tons of fruit in here. Beer is really smooth too, overall bitterness is low, which is kind of a bummer and it has an odd aftertaste. I think this would be a great aroma hop for sure.

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Photo of OskarL
4.45/5  rDev +11%
look: 4.5 | smell: 4.5 | taste: 4.5 | feel: 4 | overall: 4.5

Appearance - Hazy amber/golden color with a thick head that leaves a lot of lacing.

Smell - Passionfruit, citrus, tropical fruits and sweet malt.

Taste - Passionfruit, sweet malt, pineapple and a bitter finish.

Mouthfeel - Medium body with quite fitting carbonation.

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Photo of oberon
4.32/5  rDev +7.7%
look: 4 | smell: 4.5 | taste: 4.5 | feel: 4 | overall: 4

I had never heard of the Nelson Sauvin hop until I tried this beer.Poured into a standard pint glass a slight hazed deep orange/amber with a large fluffy two finger head that left broken lace as it settled rather slowly.Love thid big grapefruit rind aromas along with a touch of evergreen,a lighter caramel malt base shows through as well.Again big grapefruit notes on the palate,some tropical-like fruitiness as well,the evergreen/pine is more subdued but noticeable,caramel malt lends some balance.A great single hop beer,I really liked this one.

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Photo of plaid75
4/5  rDev -0.2%
look: 4 | smell: 4 | taste: 4 | feel: 4 | overall: 4

On tap at the Blind Tiger, NYC.

Poured a murky medium copper hue with a one finger foamy white head. There was good retention and lacing.

The smell featured a sweet malt and a lightcitrus hop.

The taste consisted of a sweet malt and a spicy, yet sweet hop.

The mouthfeel was typical of the style.

Overall a very tasty single hop.

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Photo of mbudner
3.98/5  rDev -0.7%
look: 4.5 | smell: 4 | taste: 4 | feel: 3.5 | overall: 4

11.2 ounce bottle poured into a pint glass. Cap dated 10/03/11 (best by)

A- Pours a deep orange, especially deep for an IPA. The head is like nothing I have ever seen before: poured without much intensity, the glass is 90% head (insert "that's what she said" joke.) As it subsides, it leaves cavernous lacing with tunnels and riptide over hangs. Whole globs of foam remain around the rim, while some areas are free from lacing. Very unique.

S- Floral, apricots, slight sweetness (smells almost like honey), faint citrusy notes.

T- Similar to the smell, notes of white wine, a much more muted version of Alpine Nelson (the only other IPA I have sampled that utilizes the single hop Nelson Sauvin), biscuity malts.

MF- Definitely the low point of this otherwise solid IPA. Feels thin and just seems to disappear on the back of the palate. The smell and taste would have you believe a more substantial mouthfeel was in store.

D- Easy drinking. I enjoyed the taste a lot, but wish it had more in the MF department. It offers a more accessible introduction to the Nelson hop (which I think is one of the best and most unique varietals) than Alpine's, but is nowhere near as good.

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Photo of Sammy
4.1/5  rDev +2.2%
look: 4 | smell: 4 | taste: 4 | feel: 4 | overall: 4.5

Well appreciated IPA. The hop smelled pleasant. The body, though medium yellow was nicely topped by a huge and lasting volume of head in my anti-gravity glass. This beer took the place of a glass of white wine in my meal. Citrus well integrated. If you like hops at all, seek it out. If you like white wine ever at all, seek this out.Creamy mouthfeel.

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Photo of Mora2000
3.95/5  rDev -1.5%
look: 4 | smell: 4 | taste: 4 | feel: 3.5 | overall: 4

Thanks to my brother for picking this beer up for me while he was driving through Lafayette, LA.

Pours golden orange with a white head. The aroma is white peaches with some other citrus. The flavor is peaches, medium bitterness with some orange and other citrus characteristics. High carbonation, thin-medium mouthfeel.

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Photo of ShogoKawada
4.3/5  rDev +7.2%
look: 4.5 | smell: 4.5 | taste: 4.5 | feel: 4.5 | overall: 3.5

MY first nelson beer that I know of, cool that it's a single hop. $5 or so @ Nikki's. Cap reads 10/3/11, must be a best by date.

A- Incredible head, caramel body. A five finger head in my tulip, although it was a pretty aggressive pour. Off-shite (like white sand) head takes its time.

S- Fresh linen. Hmm. Very hoppy, floral and citrusy. Sweet citrus, though... like a clementine and maybe some white grapes as well.

T- Interesting. Like hops kissed with sugar. Sweet, floral, resiny (but not octane-like or overbearing) and pretty damn good. A bit of a peppery note that's incredibly fleeting, a bit of a chalky, bitter closing that goes very quickly. Hard to capture this taste in words... it's a complex beer for a single-hop brew, that's for sure.

M- Crisp, tasty, a joy to drink. Textbook IPA mouthfeel, creamy head, crisp, bitter, and powerful hops.

D- High, except knocked a bit for price. I could drink this all night long, if I had a pocket of $100 bills. Great beer, though. I'll have to get more of the single hop varieties, very cool.

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Photo of FutureCowboy
3.9/5  rDev -2.7%
look: 4 | smell: 4 | taste: 4.5 | feel: 3 | overall: 3

11.2oz bottle poured into a chilled Goliath tulip. My first foray into this particular hop variety (that I know of at least).

A: Pours a smooth amber/orange, reminiscent of a nice america IPA. Thick, sticky off-white 2-finger head too, not falling very fast at all. Slight haze, nothing major.

S: Very fruity hop aromas. Fellow reviewers are referring to passion fruit, that must be it, almost like a mandarin orange or tangerine to me but I'm not Mr. Fruit Palate.

T: Oh the fruit in this thing! The citrus totally outweighs any pine or grass notes. Comes to a very bitter back end too, little malt in the middle but that fades fast. All hop, as you would expect. Teeny tiny alcohol burn.

M: Interesting, maybe a little resiny but not much. Little chewy, but again only slightly. Not much of a bite, not a super crisp finish, just kind of lingers.

D: Meh. Great use of one hop, well brewed beer, but I wouldn't want more than two in a session.

Not Mr. Fruit Palate, signing off.


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Photo of Deuane
4.1/5  rDev +2.2%
look: 4 | smell: 4 | taste: 4 | feel: 4 | overall: 4.5

Thanks to FooFaa for sharing a bottle of this one.

A-Slightly hazed golden copper with a medium, yellowish tinted, off-white head that reduces to a thin cap and leaves nice lace.

S-Strong floral and perfume hop presence with lighter notes of tropical fruits underlying and a touch of malt sweetness.

T-Floral tropical fruit zing with a backing spicy zip. Supporting caramel malt sweetness is secondary. This one really lets the N.S. hops sing!

M-Medium-light bodied, sharp and crisp. Rather light feeling with pleasant lingering spicy/floral notes and a drying finish.

D-One of my most favorite of hops and this one does not disappoint! Floral fresh with plenty of flavour. Too bad this hop is so limited and rather expensive. It would be nice if more American craft brewers would use it.

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Photo of avalon07
4.2/5  rDev +4.7%
look: 4.5 | smell: 4.5 | taste: 4 | feel: 4.5 | overall: 4

A: Poured from a bottle to a pint glass. Had an amber color and a cloudy texture. There was a huge amount of creamy, long-lasting head and some decent lacing.

S: A big aroma of hops (as you'd expect), malt, citrus and other fruits.

T: Like the smell, this one has a big flavor. Hops, a nice understated maltiness, passion fruit and citrus. There's also an underlying earthiness to it that's kind of jarring at first, but grows on you. A complex, tasty beer.

M: A highly carbonated beer with a dry, smooth finish. Light- to medium-bodied.

D: A drinkable, well-made IPA.

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Photo of CrazyDavros
3.82/5  rDev -4.7%
look: 3.5 | smell: 4 | taste: 4 | feel: 3.5 | overall: 3.5

Pours rich orange/amber with a huge head.
Classic nelson sauvin passion-fruit and peach on the nose with some pineapple thrown in as well. Also present is some lovely caramel malt and light peppery phenols.
Taste is dominated by a strong green hoppy bitterness - a little overwhelming at first. Soon enough the malt starts shining through along with lots of sweet passion fruit and peach. The alcohol also shines through, but is somewhat solventy.
Body is lacking, almost watery.
The key factor that let this down was the solventy finish, otherwise this was great.

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Photo of Nickls
4.12/5  rDev +2.7%
look: 4 | smell: 4.5 | taste: 4 | feel: 4 | overall: 4

Courtesy of a fine and kind gentleman at Beer Temple in Amsterdam.

Nice finger of slightly off-white head that only dissipates down to a thinner white cap with some noticeable bubbles on top; hazy, dirty coppery orange hue.

Fresh berries and grapefruit aromas; nice hop punch and is very enticing. Some lightly sweet passion fruits, nice touch of malt but it's staying where it should for an hop-forward take on the style. Good bitterness level, and that's what I was hoping for.

Yes, there we go. Nice hoppiness; very berry like (I understand this to be a characteristic of the Nelson hop variety); some light grapefruit as well, but subtle. The sweeter passion fruits only come in for a second, and the light malt backing holds the brew together well, but certainly doesn't shine.

Nice body, with a lighter quality with lively carbonation that livens up things and matches well with the flavor and the style. Wonderfully drinkable, and satiates the hophead in me. Interesting variety of hop, and would love to see this more in other takes on the style. Delicious, and a good deal of complexity for one hop utilized. I'm a big fan of Mikkeller's single hop series, and this one stands up there.

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Photo of BuckeyeNation
4.17/5  rDev +4%
look: 4 | smell: 4.5 | taste: 4 | feel: 3.5 | overall: 4.5

Autumn leaves orange with a great deal of uprushing carbonation that produced a huge crown of beige colored foam after a gentle pour. The head becomes hugely rocky with meltage and is leaving assorted scraps of suds on the sides of the glass.

The aroma is wonderful for anyone who likes the little green cones. Nelson Sauvin hops are so named because they're supposed to smell and taste like 'crushed gooseberries', which is a characteristic of Sauvignon blanc grapes. Actually, the beer does smell white grape-like, and also has juicy pineapple notes that are tremendous.

This IPA is yet another winner from the brewmasters at Mikkeller. They've hit on a winning combination of malt, water and yeast that goes very well with large amounts of various hops. Anyone wondering if this relatively new variety from New Zealand can carry the flavor load need wonder no longer. It ain't Simcoe good, but it's still might tasty.

The toasted-nutty-earthy malts don't intrude too much on the flavor front, which is as it should be. Specifics include a modest amount of caramel-toffee, orange peel, pineapple, white grapes and pine. It's a similar profile to many American hops... with a slightly different twist to keep things interesting.

Too bad the mouthfeel is a minor letdown. The beer is slightly too buzzy early, then feels flattish once the bubbles fade. Any sort of volume or creaminess would have earned the next highest score.

Carbonation issues might have impacted the taste score in a downward direction. Having said that, Nelson Sauvin Single Hop IPA is good stuff from a brewery that impresses much more often than not. Even though they're too expensive, I plan to pick up a single bottle of as many of these brews as Mikkeller decides to release.

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Photo of dfillius
3.7/5  rDev -7.7%
look: 4 | smell: 4 | taste: 3.5 | feel: 4 | overall: 3.5

Poured into a pint glass
A: Aggressive pour yields 4 fingers of light tan head with stellar retention, too much retention actually. Cloudy dark amber.light brown liquid.
S: So, I read that the hop has grapey/wine qualities? Yeah, I can see that, almost like a riesling or sauvignon blanc. Some bleu cheese. Some alcohol. Pleasant, definitely hoppy.
T: Fruity, very bitter. A little sherry or wet cardboard? :-( Tasty, but maybe just a tad turned.
M: Puckeringly bitter.
D: Okay but not great. Expensive, not my favorite hop aroma or character. No problem finishing one, but I won't have it again.

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Photo of brdc
3.61/5  rDev -10%
look: 4.5 | smell: 3.5 | taste: 3.5 | feel: 4 | overall: 3.5

Interesting idea, with the same base beer and a single, different hop which allows you to "study" the differences between each hop variety. I just wish they had added some information about the "base beer".

We are trying four on the same night, now moving to Nelson Sauvin and Nuggett.
I cannot say I understand why chosing Nelson Sauvin, which I had to make some research to find out it is a particular variety from New Zealand I had never heard of before.
Both pour a nice, dark golden, Nelson Sauvin hazier.
Very nice, fluffy and long lasting off white head, with very good and long lasting chunky lacing. Very nice presentation.
Toasted, caramel malts form the base for an aroma that is grossly and overpoweringly dominated by grapefruits, along with an unusual bale field smell. It is at times unidimensional.
The aroma on the Nuggett is much more delicate, complex and actually more pleasant, but I do not like grapefruits.
The flavor follows suit; light caramel cookie base, still with a predominantly hoppy taste,
heavily bitter and grapefruity here.
Both are medium bodied.

A very interesting experiment, in a very good beer. I would say I prefer Nuggett very close to Warrior, then Cascade and Sauvin. As far as hops goes in my particular palate, Cascade and Sauvin go a bit too bitter and citrusy, with way too mucvh grapefruit on the Sauvin. Still a fun experiment that I recommend to all beer lovers.

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Photo of Vengeance526
4.35/5  rDev +8.5%
look: 4.5 | smell: 4.5 | taste: 4.5 | feel: 4 | overall: 4

Pours a hazy dark orange amber color with a very large off-white head that has nice retention and leaves a little lacing.

Strong aroma of tropical fruit. Lots of pineapple and a little mango upfront. Also present are grapes and peaches in the back.

Taste again starts with the pineapple but is also a bit more malty upfront with a definite caramel touch. Towards the finish, grapefruit comes in along with light peach notes.

Medium body, lightly carbonated with a pretty smooth mouthfeel. Lots of fruit flavors all around, this one turned out extremely enjoyable and they really did a great job of building a quality IPA out of this hop variety. A definite winner in the single hop series.

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Photo of dgilks
4.32/5  rDev +7.7%
look: 4.5 | smell: 5 | taste: 4 | feel: 4.5 | overall: 4

Slightly hazy, amber colour. Fluffy, ivory head with very good head retention.

Amazing aroma from these Nelson Sauvin hops. A wonderous vinous grape character teams with kiwi fruit and a hint of slightly tart gooseberry. Wow.

Sweet, crystal malt attack flows into a vinous hoppy mid-palate. Lots of bitterness flowing into the back-palate. The grapes come through again from the aroma but the flavour depth isn't as good as the nose. Medium-dry finish.

Light to medium body with moderately high carbonation. Clean and crisp on the palate.

A decent IPA with lots of great aroma but lacking a bit of flavour. A really nice showcase of the Nelson Sauvin hop and a great idea from Mikkeller.

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Photo of BarrelO
4.22/5  rDev +5.2%
look: 4 | smell: 4.5 | taste: 4 | feel: 4 | overall: 4.5

11.2oz bottle served in a tulip.

Typical IPA color with a very big head. Smell is incredibly fruity-typical hoppy citrus, but also grapes and cranberries. Taste is pleasingly bitter with notes of grass and grapefruit. Also a nice bsackbone of vinous tartness. In, all, this is a very nice showcase for the Nelson Sauvin hop. Based on this, I'd like to see it used more often.

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Photo of DoubleJ
3.91/5  rDev -2.5%
look: 4.5 | smell: 3.5 | taste: 4 | feel: 4 | overall: 4

Another version of the Mikkeller single hop IPA series, on to the beer:

Pour a little, get a lot of foam in the glass. The color is a tint darker than orange, more so in the middle of the glass. Some thin whispy lace sticks to the glass, and the head is frosty and retaining well on top, and is very sticky. The aroma is pleasant. I'm thinking mangoes, melons, and canteloupe. Fruit skins adds, interesting note to it all.

Off the bat, I find this single hop IPA to be an intersting concoction. The hoppiness brings to mind a lot of different fruit flavors. I can find grapes, melons, canteloupe. Not bitter at all....okay, maybe a little, but not really. no alcohol is felt until the beer hits the stomach...ahh, relaxing.

Here's a beer I would happily have another of. I'm just not sure I'd pay another $5.99 for another 330 ml bottle immediately. Regardless of price, it's another good beer to the Mikkeller profile.

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Photo of ClockworkOrange
3.98/5  rDev -0.7%
look: 4.5 | smell: 4 | taste: 4 | feel: 3.5 | overall: 4

An 11.2 ounce bottle purchased at Abe's in Bethlehem for around $5. Poured into my nonic Imperial pint glass. Appears a cloudy honey amber color with at least an inch of fluffy, yet dense, off white foam. The ale leaves a pretty impressive lace in it's wake. Nose and flavors consist of grapefruit, dry grape juice, pungent notes, pine, melon, tangerines, some skunk weed, pineapple, some caramel. Quite dry with a body that's a tad thin. Carbonation levels could be a bit tamer as well. Overall, pretty decent stuff. I wouldn't buy another though due to the cost.

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Nelson Sauvin Single Hop IPA from Mikkeller ApS
Beer rating: 4.01 out of 5 with 256 ratings
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