Alpha Kong | 3 Floyds Brewing Co.

very good
136 Reviews
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Alpha KongAlpha Kong

Brewed by:
3 Floyds Brewing Co.
Indiana, United States

Style: Belgian Strong Pale Ale

Alcohol by volume (ABV): 10.50%

Availability: Rotating

Notes / Commercial Description:
A super fruity, dry hopped, Belgian sextuple, with notes of cardamon.

70 IBU

Added by orbitalr0x on 03-13-2005

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Reviews: 136 | Ratings: 359
Photo of rivertrance420
5/5  rDev +25.3%
look: 5 | smell: 5 | taste: 5 | feel: 5 | overall: 5

This is one of my top Three Floyds beers. I have enjoyed in on tap in the past, and finally had to make the trip to Chicago Binny's to buy the last up. Cracked open a 22 oz. and poured it into a snifter. Sweet smell of candy and banana on the nose. No head. Reminds me of a liquore in many ways. Very delicious. The initial taste is sweet and syrupy, and then it goes into yeasty,clove-like flavor followed by a sweet banana finish. Alcohol presence is not hidden at all. Very warming to drink. The banana flavor is out of this world. One of the greatest beers ever made, and definitely an after dinner drink. One bomber will get you buzzed.

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Photo of TriGuy20
4.87/5  rDev +22.1%
look: 4.5 | smell: 5 | taste: 5 | feel: 5 | overall: 4.5

Shared this bad boy with two other BA's. Poured from bomber into snifters.

A: Golden orange with no head. Slight lace clings to side of the glass. This beer has a beautiful Tawny Port appearance.

S: Apricot/ Carmel/ Toffee/ Burnt Sugar/ Boozy

Taste: The apricot and toffee really come out on the palate with a nice warming alcohol feel on the finish.

MF: Port like. Silky and full body, coats the mouth very nicely.

Drink: For 15% abv this goes down easily. Each sip of this brew begs for another.

A fabulous beer and a rare treat to savor with friends. As this beer warms the complexity grows. I could not keep my nose of the glass. For those lucky enough to have a bottle of this, it will continue to age beautifully. Cheers!

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Photo of mgwagman
4.76/5  rDev +19.3%
look: 5 | smell: 4.5 | taste: 5 | feel: 4.75 | overall: 4.5

22 Oz bomber. If I were choose a type of beer this is it. Pours a light orange to yellow. Excellent lacing. Smell is lemon, orange, banana, and cereal. Goes down easy. This is more of summer type beer. Pricey for the bomber $18-$22 her in Chicago, but well worth it.

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Photo of hero27
4.75/5  rDev +19%
look: 4.5 | smell: 4.5 | taste: 5 | feel: 5 | overall: 4.5

On-tap @ Three Floyds Brewpub...

Listed on the beer menu as a Sextuppel. Artwork on the tapper is very cool (as always from Three Floyds)

Shiny reddish/orange color. Aroma is mostly spices, yeast, sweet malts, and mild fruits. I really did not get my hopes up for this one, as I didn't think an American brewery focusing on hops and extreme American styles could pull this off with much success.. I couldn't be more glad I was wrong. The taste has the Belgian flair that you can easily pin down, but with a great fresh spice taste and a big-time sweetness that I swear has a life of it's own. Rumor has it this beer's huge sweetness comes from rare imported sugar from East least that's what they told us at the brewpub...but whatever it is, I've never tasted it in a belgian. The alcohol is very well hidden, but can be sensed by the nearly instant intoxication after a few sips. Mouthfeel is full and carbonation is quite low. This baby slides down as easy as a 4% pilsner..absolutely no agressive/harsh tastes..just sweet, spicy, perfection.

Truth be told, American brewers can (and have) beat many Belgians at their own game..this is one clear example. Don't get me wrong..i love a good true Belgian (from there) just as much as the next guy, but I simply cannot think of a beer at 15.5% that can top this killer.

I'll take Alpha Kong over King Kong any day..a couple big glasses of this, and Kong would be passed out in the corner.
Damn, I love when breweries have the balls to come out with insane beers like this, because when they pay off, they're simply incredible...and this one is.

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Photo of BigTone
4.7/5  rDev +17.8%
look: 5 | smell: 5 | taste: 4.5 | feel: 5 | overall: 4.5

A- Poured Dark copper with a good half inch of head that left a nice lacing on the glass.

S- Sweet and fruity. Some toffee in there too.

T- Wow, very complex, but not Complicated. Great bitterness at the end that stays with you. Plus the hop burps for the rest of the night tasted just as good.

M- One word - THICK. Good carbonation.

D- Every part of this beer compliments itself. I don't know how many you could have at one sitting... judging by the ABV maybe 2-3 at most. I will definately be hitting up the brew pub for another very soon.

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Photo of Lukafer
4.67/5  rDev +17%
look: 4.5 | smell: 5 | taste: 5 | feel: 4 | overall: 4

22 oz. Bomber, thanks alleykatking!

Looks like an unfiltered apple cider, a dark golden color and very hazy. Smells like bananas, a little yeasty but mostly bananas and some alcohol. Tastes sweet, alcohol, and bananas. Honestly, I taste Now-N-Later banana candies, very delicious! Mouthfeel is good, the carbonation is still holding up for being aged a year or two, feels good! If you can't tell, I really like this beer and it is unbelieveably drinkable for a beer of this ABV (15abv I think?). Great beer, please brew this again!

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Photo of gordavidson
4.64/5  rDev +16.3%
look: 3.5 | smell: 4.5 | taste: 5 | feel: 4.5 | overall: 4.5

A- Coppery and clear with a very small white head with barely any retention.

S- Lots of bubble gum, cotton candy, banana, and vanilla. The alcohol is barely noticeable. Smells amazing.

T- Same as the aroma. The alcohol is noticeable but is not hot and blends really well with everything.

M- The stickiness and creaminess of this is great. The alcohol does not thin this up or cause it to be harsh.

D- For the ABV, this is killer. I was expecting a boozy mess, but this is excellent. A little pricey though...

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Photo of HoboAGoGo
4.62/5  rDev +15.8%
look: 4.5 | smell: 5 | taste: 4.5 | feel: 4.5 | overall: 4.5

Poured into the snifter in the brewpub. A reddish clear color with some gold, a light tan head thinly graced the top. Nose was of alcohol, plums, cherries, bannana, biscuits. The beer can only be taken in small sips, but not so much that it is difficult to drink. The fruits again take over the palate with more of the earthy grains and biscuits, sweet biscuits, with a heavy tongue of alcohol. It was good, and it was also good that I wasn't driving. It was one I'd have again, but be cautious about it.

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Photo of jasonjlewis
4.6/5  rDev +15.3%
look: 4 | smell: 4 | taste: 5 | feel: 4 | overall: 5

Nice head and decent retention. Nice amber color. More color than the average belgian strong pale ale.

Smell is of cloves, coriander, and orange peel. Typical of the style.

Taste is awesome: I love la fin du monde. Well, I did at first, but I'm not in the mood for it much any more because it's clovey. I think it might be a seasonal thing. This beer is so balanced and awesome, it makes me crave more belgians. I wish I had more than the one sample from DAVID EDDIE! (thanks). The flavors are so balanced. The orange peel and coriander are balanced perfectly by cloves and caramel malts. I wonder if the yeast strain toned down the "over the topness" of some belgian strongs that have turned me off this season. I'm glad I finally cracked this bottle. I did not even notice the 15% abv. I thought it was about 8%/. This tells you that candy sugar wasn't simply added to boost the abvs as a shortcut.

Mouthfeel is crisp and clean.

The most drinkable belgian strong pale ale I have ever had, not to mention it's 15% abv! Holy shit. 5+++ on drinkability.

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4.59/5  rDev +15%
look: 4 | smell: 5 | taste: 4.5 | feel: 4.5 | overall: 4.5

I've waited a long time for this to come my way in bottled form since I first heard of this very intriging brew. Pours to a honey amber colored body hosting a fuzzy one inch perfect tan head that almost looks like browned at the edges. Fades to a skim in about a minute. Nose is wonderfully fragrent with strong notes of banana, mellon, vanilla and fruity taffy. Wow, at first sip you get love, in the form of thick silky richness. Phelonic fruitiness and zesty spicey notes. Carmalized pears are wraped in electric alchol fuzz on the tongue. This beer is huge and truely a sipper. It makes quads look weak. The 15% alchol is balanced quite well and represented by a robustbelly warming. Yet another run by the nose gets the distinct scent of circus peanuts. This beer is a blast to drink, enjoy one with a friend. Mouthfeel is thick as expected. Nicely drinkable but beware of the alchol. If you think you are drinking a "strong ale" you may want to reevalute after this one.

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Photo of spointon
4.54/5  rDev +13.8%
look: 4 | smell: 5 | taste: 4.5 | feel: 4 | overall: 4.5

Cripes this is a serious beer! Its billed at the Three Floyds pub as a "Belgian Sextuple - 16%abv".

A= This brew is a deep, unfiltered, cloudy, orange-amber color. There was a very small 1/4 inch white head which died quickly. No lacing present.

S= This beer has a huge nose to it. Practically an insane amount of fruity, yeasty aromas with scents of banana bread, nuts, candied fruit, and a hint of brown sugar. There is also the unmistakable alcohol smell which is unavoidable at this abv.

T= Flavors much the same as the scent indicates. Not quite cloyingly sweet, but close. Definitely a sipper...

MF= Very full bodied and rich. I found the carbonaton quite ample for a Belgian ale with barleywine characteristics.

D= As others have said, this is a big beer. Not for the weak palate, but definitely a treat for those who love fruity Belgian yeasts and the kick of uber-barleywine abv. I'll be having this one again!

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Photo of mikesgroove
4.52/5  rDev +13.3%
look: 4 | smell: 4.5 | taste: 4.5 | feel: 4 | overall: 5

I received this one a good wile back and had really been looking forward to giving it a try, but had not found the right time to really get into something this big. Well this past Saturday I decided it was as good a time as any and decided to dive right into , well as best I could. A 2007 bottle that I let warm up and served in a goblet over the course of a couple hours.

Appearance - This one poured out an odd orange and pink colored liquid. Weird color to be honest, with a nice one inch high head of off white colored foam across the top. It faded somewhat slowly, but left behind a nice little bit of a crown across the top and some decent side glass rings, but nothing really to write home about in that department. Good overall haze to it, and it had the look of something that was going to hurt in the end.

Smell - The aroma was huge, but not obnoxious, just really very big. A lot of sweet tones were rumbling all through here. Lots of candied apple, bubble gum, and the unmistakable smell of banana were all clearly evident here and really quite nice. Some light sugary alcohol in the back but I was surprised there was not more to it. It really smelled like candy to me, and in a very good way.

Taste - The flavor was just right along the same path. I was expecting something that was this big to really come off rather strong, but instead it was really quite mellow, relatively speaking. It was enormously sweet with candied sugars, almost unbearably so at times, but really just insanely good. Lots of bubble gum, cotton candy, and candy apple flavors here 9can you catch my drift) with a huge bounce of banana and maybe a touch of apricot. Light alcohol in there, it was remarkable how well it was covered up, though it did start to warm you from the inside out after a while. Finish was nice, smooth with a lingering banana and grain like flavor, super sweet.

Mouthfeel - One of the thickest and most syrup like liquids I have ever come in contact with. It reminded me of strawberry syrup in its consistency. There was some carbonation in it, though not a lot, but enough to make it sickingly sweet, still though it was a thick one to put down.

Drinkability - I am going to have to score this one a five here and I will tell you why. For something that is 15%ABV, I could not tell at all by drinking it. It was insanely smooth and drinkable. In fact I sipped and finished this bottle in about two hours and loved every minute of it. It was just perfect for sipping on and one of the best of the really big beers I have seen.

Overall this was outstanding, and easily one of my favorite three Floyds brews to date. A remarkable example of the style and really just totally solid all around. I would love to get another bottle of this one someday, it was just that good.

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Photo of sfoley333
4.52/5  rDev +13.3%
look: 4 | smell: 4.5 | taste: 5 | feel: 4 | overall: 4

Poured from 22oz bottle from Sam's wine & Spirits. Poured into glass at the Port's bottle shop. It poured a orange copper color with almost no head. The aroma of candi sugar, malt, belgium yeast, spiced alcohol. Taste of banana, wild honey, corriander, esters dried apricots. Mouth Feel is sticky sweet with a very low carbonation like a medium+ body. I dont think you could throw back much of this beer, but this make an excellent sipper and is truly a beer to ponder.

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Photo of brewcrew76
4.5/5  rDev +12.8%
look: 4.5 | smell: 4.5 | taste: 4.5 | feel: 4.5 | overall: 4.5

I wouldn't really consider this a belgian strong pale but then what 3F beers fits into a style.

A - Pours an orangish copper with very little head and no lacing. What more can you expect at 15% abv.

S - Extremely sweet candi sugar, dark fruits, spicy clove and a lot of bubblegum. Typically I would think something this sweet would not be appealing but the aromas blend together to form a very nice, complex treat.

T - Bubblegum, candi sugar, a little banana, caramel, dark fruits, maybe a touch of honey and a bit of alcohol as it warms. Very complex and drinks well for the sweetness.

M - Medium bodied somewhat sticky and sweet but not close to cloying. A bit of alcohol burn is present as it warms.

D - Amazing how easy this drinks for the abv and sweetness. I would buy this by the case if it wasn't $15 a bomber.

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Photo of ShadyRigglesbee
4.5/5  rDev +12.8%
look: 4.5 | smell: 4.5 | taste: 4.5 | feel: 4.5 | overall: 4.5

Amped up quad. Hoppy. Notes of bananas, dark fruits, cardamom, maybe some rum cake or just rum. Love this beer. Better than I remember from the last release. Enjoy!

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Photo of SammyDavisJrJrJr
4.49/5  rDev +12.5%
look: 3.5 | smell: 4.5 | taste: 4.5 | feel: 5 | overall: 4.5

I can't say I've ever tried a Belgium style offering from this brewery, and although I love pretty much everything they do, this could be very different and interesting... Into the Atomium goblet...

A - Amber body with a tab bit of head poking through . No retention.

S - Tart cherry seems to dominate the aroma, with lots of alcohol and a healthy malt back bone. Notes of coriander, vanilla, and strawberry also present. Good, powerful and complex without anything really feeling off or muddled.

T - Tart cherry and alcohol again noted at the entry. This smoothly melts into sweet malty strawberry flavored goodness. Prickly alcohol at the swallow, which lingers in the finish, along with some hop balance, spice, and strawberry notes. Definitely some interesting things going on here.

M - Ridiculously silky-smooth mouthfeel, and very thick body makes me a happy boy...

D - Damn, this is real good, wish I had another bottle to age... well, next year I'll know better. I definitely noticed the alcohol, but in a good way.

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Photo of GuyFawkes
4.47/5  rDev +12%
look: 4 | smell: 4.5 | taste: 4.5 | feel: 4.5 | overall: 4.5

Bottled 7/17/15; drank 8/7/15 @ the Yarchives.

Poured from the bottle into a glass.

Opaque dull orange/red appearance.

A rough pour yielded a HUGE khaki head; a frothy curtain of lace.

Sarsaparilla, orange citrus, caramel & cinnamon notes in the nose.

Medium thick mouthfeel.

Fresh soap & Sarsaparilla flavors up front; cinnamon dryness on the finish. Booze heat emerged as this warmed; peppermint sweetness settled on my lips over the course of the quaff. Quite drinkable despite its eccentric quirks; truly unique.

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Photo of alleykatking
4.42/5  rDev +10.8%
look: 4 | smell: 4.5 | taste: 4.5 | feel: 4 | overall: 4.5

This beer has to be one of my favorite offerings from FFF

A-Poured into a pint glass. Deep amber color pours out a little thick to my eye. The ABV on this I think keeps there from pouring a head no matter how hard I try. The lacing on this too is almost non existent.

S- While I was pouring this all I could smell was bananna. I let it sit for a couple of minutes to give it some time to calm down and when I came back although I still smelled the bananna I also picked up some hints of malt and cloves. Also, a little sugary smell (sweet) and of course an alcohol smell.

T- First off let me say that once this beer warms up you can taste more of the alcohol to it and less of everything else. On that had a sugary bananna bread taste to it. While it was still cooler the alcohol didn't really come through like it did once it warmed up. This is an amazing beer.

M- Big, thick, heavy mouthfeel I thought. It packs a little kick with it but is still not over the top as with some beers.

D- I know I hear most people they couldn't drink a full bomber but I have almost always drank this one by myself the many times I have had it. I have had two before in a row and wouldn't suggest that but hey when you like a beer you like a beer right??

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Photo of drabmuh
4.42/5  rDev +10.8%
look: 4 | smell: 4.5 | taste: 4.5 | feel: 4 | overall: 4.5

Bottle generously shared by Matt at a recent tasting. BTW, I am ISO this beer. If you have it and want to trade, send me a message. This beer was bottled in 2006 and advertised on the label as a Belgian sextuple, I think we get the point, its big.

Beer is brown and has no head, carbonation is low and there is no lacing. Beer is mostly clear. I swirl it around the snifter to see what's happening and the beer leaves mild legs on the walls of the glass.

The aroma is strong but its not super sweet or boozy, it actually smells a little like bananas. OK, strongly like bananas. I wonder if this is intended, there is a giant monkey on the label. I personally found this quite funny and proceeded to the drinking portion with high hopes.

Beer is sweet and really smooth. There is very little heat for such a big beer and its surprisingly drinkable. It was my general understanding that this beer was quite hot but this is kind of a dream, especially for a 15% beer. It leads off with this maltiness to it, and follows that with this complex, mildly alcoholic fruit center and finishes a little dry. Its interesting. Surprisingly drinkable for such a huge endeavor. I'd definitely have it again.

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Photo of bassmantin
4.4/5  rDev +10.3%
look: 4.5 | smell: 4.5 | taste: 4.5 | feel: 4.5 | overall: 4

Pours a medium brownish red color. Very little head and weak lacing.

Smell is very sweet with a lingering alcohol aroma. The taste is quite robust - a great mixture of complex flavors. Spiciness, bubble gum, alcohol, with a decent amount of carbonation. This is a very interesting beer.

Overall: Takes you on a magical journey but the fare is expensive ($15+)

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Photo of tmitch75
4.38/5  rDev +9.8%
look: 4.5 | smell: 4 | taste: 4.5 | feel: 4.5 | overall: 4.5

Beautiful reddish amber color with little head that disappears fast. It even LOOKS thick.

Smell is sweet & fruity. Lots of banana with some raisins. You can smell the alcohol - not a big surprise considering the high ABV.

Taste is malty & sweet. Bananas & raisins again with some bubble gum thrown in. Alcohol is prevalent, but not overpowering (again, considering the high ABV).

Mouthfeel is thick & chewy - almost like cough syrup - with very little carbonation. I love it.

This is a beautiful and delicious beer - great for a special occasion. I'd been looking for it for a while, so just getting my hands on it was a special occasion!

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Photo of Bitterbill
4.37/5  rDev +9.5%
look: 4 | smell: 4.5 | taste: 4.5 | feel: 4.5 | overall: 4

I got this in a trade with joe1510. Thanks Joe!

This pours a clear amber with a very small head of foam that leaves the scene rather quickly.

The smell...yeah...lots of dark fruit, caramel malt, bubble gum, clove, banana, and alcohol.

The taste on first sip and man, I'm getting a lot of candy sugar along with notes of banana, clove, apple, dark fruit, caramel, some yeast, and some alcohol. Very warming but no surprise there but this will do me for the night, me thinks. ;^)

The mouthfeel is medium though at times, it seems to border on syrupy, the carbonation is light, and it finishes with a slight tartness that lingers on through the aftertaste. Wow.
I love how the sweet part of this brew mixes so well with the tartness from the apple and dark fruit. To me, this one definitely taste like a Belgian and my hat's off to Three Floyd's. Very very nice brew!

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Photo of ohmybock
4.36/5  rDev +9.3%
look: 3.5 | smell: 5 | taste: 4.5 | feel: 3.5 | overall: 4

I just picked this one up in Chicago at $16.99 for a 22oz bomber...ouch! A little voice inside my head kept saying, "don't waste your money", but I went ahead and bought one anyway. (I love hoppy beers, but I haven't been too excited about the other hoppy, and/or high-gravity, and/or expensive 3F beers I've purchased.) Additionally, I had previously read some reviews about this one which made me think I might not like it.

Well...It turns out I like this one a lot!

The first thing I noticed was that there was very little "phhhitt" when I popped the cap. Carbonation is low with this bad boy. That’s too bad because more carbonation would certainly help cut the thickness of this brew and improve it. Next, I noticed the aroma which heavily consists of spices (think clove) and bananas. The aroma (and the taste) remind me somewhat of a potent German wheat beer. However, AK is much thicker and sweeter than any German wheat beer I’ve had. Could this be a quadruple weizenbock? If you like the flavors found in weizenbiers or weizenbocks, try this one. There’s a nice, clear, amber color to the beer, but there’s no head (which corresponds with the low carbonation). There’s a bit of hot alcohol character mixed in with the flavor along with an alcohol bite in the finish, but for a beer of this strength, it’s surprisingly least in small sips. The malt and spiciness dominate in this brew with hops taking an almost indistinguishable backseat. I read some other reviews that claimed this beer is sweet and syrupy. That’s somewhat true, but it’s not as over-the-top sweet as a fresh Samichlaus, Thomas Hardy, or JW Lees Harvest (none of which I like when they’re fresh), and it’s nothing like the sickly-sweet Beast Grand Cru and Samael from Avery which went down my drain. However, AK does remind me a bit of Avery’s Reverend, but with a more evident alcohol character and burn. Even though AK is on the "sweet side", I still find it totally drinkable as it stands today. Still, if there was more carbonation, this beer would be even better.

Well, it’s nice to see something quite different being produced by 3F and also something that I (surprisingly) enjoyed a lot. I still think the price doesn’t fit the contents of the bottle, but unlike most other high-priced 3F beers I’ve had, I might actually revisit this one in the future. Until then, I’ll be content drinking The Reverend at 1/3 the price of AK.

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Photo of darktronica
4.36/5  rDev +9.3%
look: 4.25 | smell: 4.5 | taste: 4.25 | feel: 4.75 | overall: 4.25

Served on draft in a snifter at 3 Floyds brewpub, this has a pleasant foam with plenty of retention and light fluffiness. Smells of pineapple, citrusy hop character, bread yeast, and clove. Tastes primarily of tropical fruits, with the hops falling off once the Kong hits your tongue. Great mouthfeel is the highlight, with a very slight chalkiness that slides easily around the mouth and is rare in a beer.

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Photo of thetomG
4.35/5  rDev +9%
look: 4 | smell: 4 | taste: 4.5 | feel: 4.5 | overall: 4.5

Mostly clear with a yellow/orange/brownish hue - nice sized layer of white foamy head on top.

Very sweet in the aroma and flavor wise (but not to the point of making it undrinkable by any means) - along with the ever-present sweetness, some banana & mild tropical fruit flavors lingering as well. A bit of burn from the high ABV make this one a sipper for sure. Well carbonated but with a slightly thick feel to it - very nice mouthfeel.

Very glad I was able to try this - still holding up well after all these years. Seek it out if you can... delicious brew.

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Alpha Kong from 3 Floyds Brewing Co.
3.99 out of 5 based on 359 ratings.
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