Tree Hugger | Terrapin Beer Company

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Tree HuggerTree Hugger
Tree HuggerTree Hugger

Brewed by:
Terrapin Beer Company
Georgia, United States

Style: German Altbier

Alcohol by volume (ABV): 5.10%

Availability: Year-round

Notes / Commercial Description:
Originally a special draft-only release for the 2012 Decatur Green Fest, this beer was so adored that we decided to bring it on full-time in 2013.

With a mild herbal spice hop aroma and a malty flavor profile featuring notes of caramel, toffee, and nuts, this malt-forward, Altcentric beer is a welcome compliment to our hop-forward roster.

Brewed in association with Dogwood Alliance, an organization formed in 1996 and dedicated to protecting Southern forests and communities from destructive logging practices.

This beer is retired; no longer brewed.

User Reviews & Ratings
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Reviews: 56 | Ratings: 385
Photo of mothmanscott
3.45/5  rDev -1.1%
look: 4 | smell: 3.25 | taste: 3.5 | feel: 3.25 | overall: 3.5

From notes 5/28/13: Pours an opaque deep amber producing slightly more than a finger of beige, foamy, somewhat lasting head that leaves thin, pasty rings and motes of lace. Aroma is toasted malt, dark bread, a little caramel and a hint of dark fruit. Taste is dark bread and roast with a burnt toastiness, cola like caramel, floral hops and a hint of pine resin producing aa fine bitter bite that is mildly acetic. Finish and aftertaste are bitter with a caramel and lingering burnt toast tone that increases in the aftertaste. Mouthfeel is medium bodied, moderate carbonation with a peppery bite in the finish and a slight astringency in the aftertaste. Divinely balanced!

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Photo of PorterLambic
3.48/5  rDev -0.3%
look: 3.75 | smell: 2.5 | taste: 3.75 | feel: 4 | overall: 3.75

Pours a clear, honeyed copper color with a fluffy looking light tan head that leaves a lot, sheets really, of lacing behind as it drops to a chunky foam.
The nose is weak, hard to pick anything out with such a slight presence. Some malt, a bit of caramel, maybe some cardboard, some nuts.
Taste is malt, hops, caramel, nutty. I like the balance and the presence is much better than the nose.
Body is medium plus, effervescence is nicely restrained. Drinks very much like an ESB or an amber. Good stuff, especially if they can bring up some nose presence.

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Photo of ordybill
3.5/5  rDev +0.3%
look: 3.5 | smell: 3.5 | taste: 3.5 | feel: 3.5 | overall: 3.5

Poured from a 12 oz. bottle into a pint glass. Aroma- Grains, Malt and a small floral finish Appearance- A slightly murky copper color with an off white head. Taste- A good blend of malt and hops, has a nice smooth flavor Palate- Medium bodied with light carbonation Overall- A really good summer brew, really enjoyable. would drink again

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Photo of Jadjunk
3.54/5  rDev +1.4%
look: 3.75 | smell: 3.5 | taste: 3.5 | feel: 3.75 | overall: 3.5

"Brewed for the nature lover in all of us, our Tree Hugger Ale is blossoming with flavor. Behold the amber color of this "Altcentric" ale and celebrate the majestic balance of both hops and malt." Brewed in the style of an Altbier.

Poured from a 12 oz. bottle to a pint glass. Served above 53º Fahrenheit.

(Appearance) Pours a frothy, creamy head of a tan white color over a mildly hazy copper orange body with mild speckled sediment. Carbonation is light and relaxed. Retention is above average, lacing is light and spotty. 3.75

(Smell) Aromas of lightly toasted bread malt, biscuity caramel grain combine with a light floral effervescent hop profile to make an approachable aroma. Fruity notes of apricot, cherry and white raisin round out the aroma. Potency is medium. 3.5

(Taste) The malt profile consists of a nice blend of bready and biscuity malts to make a quaffable and clean malt profile. The finish reveals a touch of floral and estery fruit flavors with a mellow bitterness. 3.5

(Mouthfeel) Texture is clean, mildly chewy, light. Carbonation generates a light frothy aroma for a subtle mouthfeel. Body is light/medium for the style, shy of medium overall. Balance is sweet over bitter. Alcohol presence is light, and imperfections are far and few. 3.75

(Overall) A fairly simple but enjoyable style by Terrapin, not commonly enough brewed in America although this is a fairly light and easy drinking Altbier, it makes for a nice substitution to Amber ales or even lighter bodied brown ales. 3.5

Terrapin Beer Company's
Tree Hugger Ale

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Photo of donmonkey1
3.35/5  rDev -4%
look: 3 | smell: 3 | taste: 3.5 | feel: 3.5 | overall: 3.5

Appearance: Pours a copper/amber color with a nice white head. The head is dissipating too quickly, probably because of the lack of carbonation in the beer.

Smell: Sort of a fresh scent, a lot like fresh laundry. No real scents to report.

Taste: Heavily malted like molasses with a little roasted nut/toasted thing happenin'.

Mouthfeel: Medium body,

It's OK, but I want more, especially from Terrapin. Terrapin makes great beers, but this one is a little better than average.

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Photo of MakeMineADoubleJack
2.58/5  rDev -26.1%
look: 3.25 | smell: 2 | taste: 3 | feel: 2 | overall: 2.5

This beer really does nothing for me. I got this in a variety 12 pack so I wasn't expecting many "event" beers, but I can honestly say this is the wort Terrapin effort I've tried. And, until now, I've loved everything I've had of theirs. Oh well. As Primus tells us in their greatest hits album: "They Can't All Be Zingers".

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Photo of NickT2121
3.74/5  rDev +7.2%
look: 4 | smell: 3.75 | taste: 3.75 | feel: 3.5 | overall: 3.75

A - served on tap at Buffalo Grill in little Rock, this place is awesome friendly ppl awesome atmosphere. But onto the tree hugger. Came out in a mug. Nice dark honey color with little head.. But great lacing

S - lemony citrus Smell with explosions of malt... Toffee undertones and caramel sweetness lingering..

T - very very very refreshing get the crisp lemon sweetness... Malty goodness, complex yet simple a the same time. Get a maple nutty taste

M - very light with a sweet dry finish..

O - I'm enjoying this on the patio at Buffalo Grill with my family very refreshing and a great beer. Great refreshing beer for the spring summer days


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Photo of pixieskid
2.51/5  rDev -28.1%
look: 3 | smell: 2 | taste: 2.5 | feel: 3.5 | overall: 2.5

Had no idea what style this was supposed to be; I remember thinking and saying "well, it doesn't taste bad, but it is probably the most boring beer I have had in a long time." It's reminiscent of many mediocre brewpub "Copper Ale" offerings. Altbier? I've been to Dusseldorf, this isn't an altbier. Maybe a year old bottle of Uerige, at best...

Over the years, I have become less and less of a Terrapin fan, had a blast at their brewery a couple years back, but it's been a long time since I was really impressed by them. White Chocolate MooHoo was nice enough and put them up a notch, but even the new super limited stuff still isn't doing all that much for me. Tree Hugger brought them back down to where they were before I had the WC MooHoo. Wake-n-Bake is always I treat when I see it, but unfortunately that release has made it's way into the "hyped up beer club".

Maybe the fact that they are 40ish% owned by MillerCoors has something to do with it, but I'm glad that more breweries are popping up in GA and offering something different than the (dare I say it) "Older/Larger" GA breweries.

Appearance: Copper color, thin white head.
Nose: Not much there, some barely, stale European hops.
Taste: Same as the nose, barley, a touch of hops.
Mouthfeel: dry enough, and rounded. Probably the best attribute.
Overall: Year round offering...who's buying this? I suppose that this bottle could have been old and maybe it's more interesting fresh (I didn't notice a freshness date).

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Photo of hopsputin
3.9/5  rDev +11.7%
look: 3.75 | smell: 3.75 | taste: 4 | feel: 4.25 | overall: 3.75

a: dark, almost hazy, caramel with hints of ruby red and murky brown. 3 finger frothy head that leaves nice lacing down the side of the glass as it fades. looks real nice and malty

s: smells nutty and caramel-y. its all sweet malt, with a sweet berry aroma. a hint of toffee in here as well. its all sweet - crisp and sweet. smells nice

t: taste follows the nose - though it does taste a little watery. its loads of caramel malt, white bread, nutty. ends with crisp caramel malt. a little thin tasting

m: lighter side of medium, mild carbonation. as mentioned, tastes a bit thin

o: well, its nothing great but nothing offensive. its a malt-forward beer, but tastes a little thin. though, in its own way it is quite refreshing. its worth picking up a bottle if you come across

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Photo of tone77
3.63/5  rDev +4%
look: 4 | smell: 3.5 | taste: 3.75 | feel: 3.5 | overall: 3.5

Poured from a brown 12 oz. bottle. Has a pretty autumn brown color with a 1/2 inch head. Smell is malty, bready. Taste is good, malts, nutty, some caramel, a touch of hops, very easy drinking. Feels medium bodied in the mouth and overall is a solid beer.

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Photo of Thads324
3.5/5  rDev +0.3%
look: 4.5 | smell: 3.25 | taste: 3.5 | feel: 3.5 | overall: 3.5

Pours a beautiful copper color. Big off white head and lots of bubbles rushing up. The head doesn't leave and lacing is heavy.

Smells malty, a bit fruity and biscuity. Much like an English esb. A tiny bit of berry and really no bits of hops.

Starts watery, followed by mild crystal malts and an earthy medicinal hop towards the end. A hint of mild bitterness towards the end. A bread flavor towards the end brings it all together.

Mouthfeel is medium- light, very easy drinking. Regular carbonation.

A pretty good beer, very sessionable.

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Photo of oberon
3.54/5  rDev +1.4%
look: 4.25 | smell: 2.75 | taste: 3.75 | feel: 3.75 | overall: 3.75

After a nice good hard pour this beer comes out a full deep amber with a sticky one finger light tannish colored head,aone full ring of lace is left behind as it settles very very slowly.The aromas are very dissapointing with not much other than some iron/mettalic notes coming thru.The body is smooth just a tad light,but the smoothness for the style was nice.Dryer on the palate with some nuttiness and a firm crispness,some leafy hops and that metallic tinge in the finish.A beer I could drink all day,I may have liked a little more sweetness to it wich for me that is saying something.

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Photo of cjgator3
3.63/5  rDev +4%
look: 4.25 | smell: 3.75 | taste: 3.5 | feel: 3.75 | overall: 3.5

12oz bottle

A- Pours a dark brown color with a light tan head with good retention and lacing.

S- The aroma is sweet bready malts.

T- The taste like the aroma is heavy on the malt with just a touch of hops in the nutty finish.

M- The mouthfeel is between light and medium bodied with a good amount of carbonation.

O- Overall, not bad but probably not something I would purchase again. A solid malty brew that was enjoyable.

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Photo of DragonHead
3.66/5  rDev +4.9%
look: 4.5 | smell: 3.5 | taste: 3.75 | feel: 3.5 | overall: 3.5

Poured from a bottle to a pint pub glass. Minimal Altbier experience - so grain of salt here. An honest review nonetheless.

A - Pours a dark coppery color with rubyish edges. 2 finger barely off white head that dissipates normally. Leaves great lacing down the glass. Excellent clarity - all beers should be this clear.

S - A mild, bready, spicy aroma. Maybe a little nutty, maybe just a touch of caramel, but I did not get much of a fruity smell.

T - Tastes surprisingly light, almost thin but not quite watery. Not much of a real aftertaste. Just a little spiciness but it is balanced well and somewhere between the hoppiness and maltiness. I got a moderate amount of carbonation that seemed about right. Very easy drinking beer with a good balance.

M - Almost like a lager beer mouthfeel. Very crisp. Didnt seem to have much more heaviness than a lager; not that I could find. Has a pretty good carbonation. Does not leave a coating on the tongue or soft palate that I might have expected. Has a good semi-dry finish.

O - I dont have a tremendous amount of experience with Altbier, but the of few I've tried this one seems to be a good enough representation. Not really my cup-of-beer but pretty decent. Has a very nice hoppy/malty ratio. I might accidentally have this again for a change from my daily drinker but it would not replace it. I'm sure I will finish the other 5, but I'm not running to the store yet, it will be a while. If you like it crisp and well balanced but just a little leaning to the malty side, then this beer might be for you. Cheers!

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Photo of Act25
3.87/5  rDev +10.9%
look: 4 | smell: 3.75 | taste: 4 | feel: 3.75 | overall: 3.75

Outstanding Alt Bier. great with Robusto cheese. Poured into a .5l cylinder named Spaten.

A - Pours a clear nut brown with an inch of sticky head that leaves many lace rings.

S - Nice. Caramel, toasted malt with a little hops. Smells balanced. Sweet, old world.

T - This is a a great Altbier with mild toasted malt meeting sweet caramel malt. includes grassy, herbal and ice tea notes. Old wood. Really great flavor straight out of Dusseldorf.

M - Medium body with good weight and perfect finish.

Overall - Must try for style. Must try for great brewer.

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Photo of thagr81us
3.9/5  rDev +11.7%
look: 4 | smell: 4 | taste: 3.75 | feel: 4 | overall: 4

Served from tap into a shaker. Poured a slightly hazy reddish brown with a one finger off-white head that subsided to a half finger very slowly. Maintained excellent lacing throughout the glass. The aroma was comprised of sweet malt, citrus, dark fruit, fruit hop, smoke, and subtle dark chocolate. The flavor was of sweet malt, bread, milk chocolate, cream, dark fruit, earth, and earth hop. It had a light feel on the palate with high carbonation. Overall this was a fairly good brew. This really wasn’t a bad brew, but on the flavor the earthiness kind of threw it off for me in all honesty. If it would not have been for the earthy bite on this one it could have definitely been a top-tier brew for the style while being brewed here in the States. Just about everything else on this one was just about spot-on. Glad I got the chance to try this one, but Terrapin does have more solid offerings.

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Photo of dwren89
4.13/5  rDev +18.3%
look: 4 | smell: 4 | taste: 4.25 | feel: 4.25 | overall: 4

Appearance: light molasses brown with tan highlights, thin off white head, good clarity

Aroma: nutty with a slight sweet molasses hint, little bit of a yeasty fruitiness, slight toasty bread notes,

Taste: smooth, easy drinking with an embracing nuttiness with a slight sweetness and fruitiness to it. A great balance overall. Great malt character balanced by just enough bitterness

Mouthfeel: lager like mouthfeel, crisp and medium bodied but with a slight ale like thickness to it. Medium carbonation

Overall: Not quite as good as the german altbiers but definitely a very solid american interpretation. Expect nuttiness and slight sweetness on the tongue with a balanced finish.

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Photo of 57md
3.59/5  rDev +2.9%
look: 4.25 | smell: 3.25 | taste: 3.5 | feel: 4 | overall: 3.75

Appearance is a dark copper with ruby edges. The huge fluffy head stays around forever and leaves superb lacing behind when it finally dwindles. The nose is surprisingly mild - maybe some breadiness, but that is all. The flavor is malty, but light - not quite what I might call thin, but certainly NOT full-bodied. The finish is pleasantly semi-dry.

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Photo of microbrewlover
3.9/5  rDev +11.7%
look: 4.25 | smell: 4.25 | taste: 3.75 | feel: 3.75 | overall: 3.75

This brew pours a reddish brown color with a two finger tan head which lasts for several minuets. Some of the head remains on top until the end. Good carbonation. Moderate lacing.

The smell is thick and malty; bready and yeasty. Dank earth, grassy and fruit smells.

The taste follows the nose with thick bready roasted and sweet malts. A sugary then nutty taste follows with a small amount of piney hops on the backend.

The feel is thick and chewy; malty along with a dry grassy taste left on the tongue after swallowing.

Overall this is a good malty beer. It is fairly sweet with just enough malts to balance it out from becoming too sweet. My one complaint is that the nutty smell did not come through in the taste, at least not that I could detect. If you like malty, thick brews then give this one a try.

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Photo of rajendra82
3.46/5  rDev -0.9%
look: 4 | smell: 3 | taste: 3.5 | feel: 4 | overall: 3.5

Good looking pour, clear, with an attractive amber-copper color. The smell was dominated by cooked corn, with some grassy hops. This had a sweet, malty start to the sip. The finish however was nicely bitter and hoppy. Thin bodied and quenching, with a mildly spicy aftertaste. The label was correct, that this was a balanced beer between malt and hops. Unfortunately the balance sapped the excitement out of the experience too.

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Photo of macrosmatic
3.66/5  rDev +4.9%
look: 3.5 | smell: 3.75 | taste: 3.5 | feel: 4 | overall: 3.75

Reviewed from notes. Poured from 12 oz. bottle into a Weyerbacher pint glass.

A: Dark bronze in color, nearly clear, with a half-finger's worth of white head. Initially has a fair amount of visible carbonation, but the bubbles dissipate quickly.

S: Clean on the nose, with lager yeastiness, bready malts and toffee sweetness, brown malts, and a very light grassy hop aroma in the background.

T: Follows the nose, but the hops are even less noticeable than in the nose. Toasted toffee and brown malts predominate – overall impression is quite malty. Finishes fairly dry.

M: Medium body, good carbonation sensation, low alcohol presence.

O: This is one of those beers I find difficult to rate. I didn't find it to be a favorite for me, but I've only had a few altbiers and this one seems to be done quite well to-style. Still not something I'd be actively looking to have again.

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Photo of dbrauneis
3.23/5  rDev -7.4%
look: 3.25 | smell: 3.25 | taste: 3.25 | feel: 3 | overall: 3.25

Served on-tap at Iron Monkey in Jersey City, NJ

A: Pours a crystal clear medium amber in color with some light amounts of visible carbonation (mostly stuck as medium to large bubbles along the edges of the glass) and some faint brown highlights. The beer has a finger tall light beige head that reduces to a large patch of thin film and a medium thick ring at the edges of the glass. Moderate amounts of lacing are observed.

S: Light aromas of malts - toasted and fruity with a light to moderate amount of sweetness.

T: Upfront there is a light to moderate flavor of sweet toasted malts with some light notes of fruity yeasts (with some hints of apple) along with light amounts of herbal hops. Light hints of bitterness in the finish.

M: Medium bodied with light to moderate amounts of carbonation. Slightly thin/watery.

O: Easy to drink but does not really seem like a true Altbier to me, guess I was spoiled from spending a week in Düsseldorf. I don't think I would get another of these and I am someone that appreciates the style.

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Photo of Mojo
3.81/5  rDev +9.2%
look: 3.5 | smell: 3.75 | taste: 4 | feel: 3.5 | overall: 3.75

12 ounce bottle -> World Market tulip

A - pours up a deep copper with a thin head, no retention, and only small amounts of lacing left behind.

S - mostly a bready smell with some spicy notes

T - pretty malty up front. Finishes nice and bitter with a rye flavor.

M - sort of thin and under carbonated.

O - I enjoyed this one and would drink more of them had I bought more than one bottle.

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Photo of metter98
3.25/5  rDev -6.9%
look: 3.25 | smell: 3.25 | taste: 3.25 | feel: 3.25 | overall: 3.25

On-tap at Iron Monkey, Jersey City, NJ

A: The beer is dark amber in color and has no visible carbonation. It poured with a thin off white head that died down, leaving only a thin ring of bubbles around the edge of the glass.
S: Light aromas of fruity malts are present in the nose along with notes of sweet toasted malts.
T: Like the smell, the taste has flavors of fruity yeast and toasted malts along with hints of herbal hops.
M: It feels light-bodied on the palate and has a low amount of carbonation.
O: This beer is easy to drink, but having been to Düsseldorf this doesn't taste to me like a true altbier.

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Photo of Paincane
3.04/5  rDev -12.9%
look: 3.25 | smell: 3 | taste: 3 | feel: 3.25 | overall: 3

A: Amber colored body with tan head that is short-lived but leaves nice lacing behind.
S: Caramel roasted sweet malt with a hint of citrus earthy hoppiness.
T: Caramel malt at the outset with crisp hoppy notes on back end. Fairly well-balanced.
M: Smooth with crisp, dry bitter finish.
O: Good brew with earthiness and crispness to it.

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Tree Hugger from Terrapin Beer Company
Beer rating: 3.49 out of 5 with 385 ratings