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Alpha King | 3 Floyds Brewing Co.

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BA SCORE
95
world-class
1,811 Reviews
Alpha KingAlpha King
BEER INFO

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

Style: American Pale Ale (APA)

Alcohol by volume (ABV): 6.66%

Availability: Year-round

Notes / Commercial Description:
A bold yet balanced American Pale Ale with slight caramel sweetness and aggressive citrus hoppiness. This is our flagship beer.

68 IBU

Added by BeerAdvocate on 07-23-2000

BEER STATS
Reviews:
1,811
Ratings:
6,348
Avg:
4.26
pDev:
16.67%
 
 
Wants:
969
Gots:
1,293
For Trade:
29
User Reviews
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Reviews: 1,811 | Ratings: 6,348
Photo of AltBock
4.32/5  rDev +1.4%
look: 3.5 | smell: 4 | taste: 4.5 | feel: 4.5 | overall: 4.5

12oz. bottle with a very interesing picture on the front and information about beer on the side. It said that this is their flagship beer and it was bottle conditioned.

Appearance: Poured a clear light copper color with a very small head of white foam that dissipated fast after the beer settled. But it did leave some lace around the mug though.

Smell: It had a strong aroma of citrus fruits, like grapefruit, plenty of bitter hops and some pine in the background.

Taste: It had a pleasant strong taste of spicy citrus bitter hops. That's it, nothing else but the spicy citrus fruits and the hops. Very Good!

Mouthfeel: Although that strong citrus bitter hops lingers around in the back of your mouth for a while, it still goes down nice and smooth. I still don't believe that this beer clocks in a 7.35% ABV, I sure as hell didn't feel it.

Drinkability: Let's just say I can understand why this beer is considered their flagship beer. Keep up the good work 3 Floyds!

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Photo of UncleJimbo
4.32/5  rDev +1.4%
look: 4 | smell: 4.5 | taste: 4.5 | feel: 4 | overall: 4

12 oz, longneck, brown bottle.

This pale ale poured a clear, coppery color with creamy, light tan foam. The smell was dominated by hops! But there was a touch of caramel malt in the nose as well. The taste was bitter hops and some citrusy hops balanced by a good maltiness. The finish was dominated by the hops (both bitter and citrus). The mouthfeel wad dry and hoppy with medium body and modest carbonation feel. The dry malt flavor and the hoppiness lingered in the finish. This was a very nice, American pale ale, and the high ABV is hidden well.

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Photo of jhammerly
4.75/5  rDev +11.5%
look: 5 | smell: 5 | taste: 4.5 | feel: 4.5 | overall: 5

I finally acquiried this brew during a roadtrip to John's Grocery in Iowa City. I must say it was worth the wait. To be honest though, I think I was attracted to the beer due to its artwork on the label more than the beer itself. Labeling once again pays off for the brewery. This was a delightful treat.

Poured into an imperial pint glass from the bottle, I received a near perfect pour. An orangish amber body with an off-white two-fingered head. A wonderful aroma of citrusy hops with a hint of pine (can someone please market this aroma as an air freshener?). The hop flavor just coats the tongue and lingers there for awhile. It is strong, but not overpowering. If not for the high ABV, this could be a nice session beer because it isn't heavy and it is very drinkable.

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Photo of orsulacp
4.02/5  rDev -5.6%
look: 4 | smell: 4.5 | taste: 4 | feel: 3 | overall: 4

This beer poured a clear amber with a decent size slight off white head. The smell is dominated bye the hops but there is a decent amount of malt coming through. The hops were citrus and the malt was bready. I thought I smelt chocolate but my wife said I was insane. Slight bitter taste at first then the malt washes this away, then a slight bitter taste is left on the tongue. This beer is refreshing, the low carbonation and medium mouthfeel usually don't support this but it did here. Very good beer.

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Photo of SacoDeToro
4.22/5  rDev -0.9%
look: 4 | smell: 4.5 | taste: 4 | feel: 4 | overall: 4.5

Ahh, the elusive Three Floyds beer are always a treat (I'm stuck on the West Coast) and this was no exception.

The beer poured a rich orange hue and had a nice tan head. The aroma was a pungent burst of citrus and pine. The maltiness was a light caramel sweetness with some dextrins adding to a hearty mouthfeel for a pale ale. The hops were bold, but well balanced by the malt. Carbonation was right on.

This is an excellent beer that I would never pass up if I saw some in front of me. It's on par with the Bell's Two Hearted ale, which in my opinion really puts it in the category of IPA, albeit on the milder side of American IPAs.

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Photo of arguemaniac
4.3/5  rDev +0.9%
look: 4 | smell: 4 | taste: 4.5 | feel: 4 | overall: 4.5

Pours a nice chestnut amber with a foamy head that leaves a sticky, sprawling lace. An outstanding aroma featuring floral and citrus hops with some maltiness in the very background. The flavor is dominated by an incredibly tasty citrus hop spice with some sweet, fruity malt notes that balance very nicely. In fact, a toasted, caramel malt flavor comes through very noticeably as well. The mouthfeel is quite smooth with a subtle carbonation tang.

This is easily the best pale ale I’ve tasted since having tried the American pale ale examples produced by Legend and Sierra Nevada. As many other BA’s have observed, it certainly is a lot hoppier than your typical American pale ale, but, as most of those BA’s have also pointed out, who cares, it’s fantastic!! Highly recommended

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Photo of beermanbrian
4.59/5  rDev +7.7%
look: 4 | smell: 5 | taste: 4.5 | feel: 4.5 | overall: 4.5

Copper color with an off white sticky head but who cares how it looks with that awesome smell. All citrus hops. Probably out of the range of a APA and more like an IPA but so what, it's a great beer. Taste shows more of the hops bitterness but there is plenty of malt to balance it out. Dry finish for this full bodied beer. Very drinkable beer, my wife and I flew through a case of this. Would recommend for any hop head out there but my guess is that you've already had it.

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Photo of Lnedrive14
4.57/5  rDev +7.3%
look: 4 | smell: 4.5 | taste: 4.5 | feel: 4.5 | overall: 5

Thanks to the one and only Beerpanther - purveyor of beer extraordinare. And a helluva good guy.

I will start of by saying that I've had this beer before, and from what I remembered I kept thinking it was misclassified, and that it was really more of an IPA. Well, it isnt. This here, folks, is just one damn fine pale ale.

A: Pours a reddish amber with a small white head, which dissipates quickly leaving a ring of lacing around my pint glass. It's a very earthy looking beer - i feel it is what a good homebrew should look like.

S: Whoa hops gallore! Maybe the smell is why I thought it was an IPA. Some definite spiciness and alcohol presence in there. Some kind of fruit, maybe pomegranite in there as well.

T: Oh, so good. So good. Hops hit immediately, but they receede quickly and the sweet apple flavors dominate. Also some pear and nectarine in there. It's quite a fruity beer, but it is definitely the sweetness of the fruit that overshadows any other flavors.

M: Silky smooth. I can't really image a Pale Ale feeling better than this.

D: So easy. The sweetness really makes this an easy to drink pale ale. It is just perfect. The hope are prevelent, but not overwhelming to the point where I only want one or two.

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Photo of nlmartin
4.4/5  rDev +3.3%
look: 4 | smell: 4 | taste: 5 | feel: 4 | overall: 4

Poured from the bottle into a pub glass.

Appearance: This beer is a very nice dark amber. The head was a towering whiteness very fluffy it had major staying power.

Smell: This beer is massively juicy with citrus and hop maddness.

Taste: This is a great tasting beer. There is a fantastic citrus base. This base explodes into hoppy madness. Just fantastically spicy. The beer does have a small malty assist.

Mouthfeel/ Drinkability: This beer is full bodied. Nice carbonation helps the brew slide down. This is one of my favorites.

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Photo of semihobo
3.9/5  rDev -8.5%
look: 4.5 | smell: 4.5 | taste: 4 | feel: 3.5 | overall: 3

After hearing so much about Three Floyds, I picked some up on a road trip to Chicago and brought it home with me.

Odd looking label, I guess "alpha" probably refers to alpha acids. Good name. Pours with a slightly off white, large, dense head. Color is a beautiful ruby / amber. The color is entrancing, and bubbles rising slowly to the top round out the appearance.

Smell is hoppy for an APA, as citrusy as they say on the label. Fruity and lemony, very inviting. The fruit scent is enhanced by some sweet malt notes that take a backseat to the hops.

The taste is certainly not that of a "classic" APA. It's all hops, potent and citrusy with a pleasant bitter finish. There is a subtle malt background, but this is quite the hophead take on an APA. Interesting, and the hops are tasty, but the imbalance is a bit extreme. Points for creativity, though. Alcohol is well masked in the taste, although there's no denying its effect.

Mouthfeel is a little thin, although the carbonation is pleasant. About average. Very dry finish, in a good way.

This brew suffers on the drinkability. Not so much the high alcohol, but the one-dimensional taste. An interesting take on an American Pale Ale, not the classic advertised on the bottle but quite tasty. Still, more like an IPA or DIPA, and after one I'm ready for something else.

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Photo of Xadoor
4.3/5  rDev +0.9%
look: 4 | smell: 4 | taste: 4.5 | feel: 4 | overall: 4.5

Poured a copper orange colour with a big foamy head. Lots of lacing in the glass. Citrus and floral hop aroma. Flavour is full and bold, almost approaching an IPA. Slightly bitter and dry finish. Higher alcohol is only slightly noticeable. Very drinkable beer, particulary with a meal.

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Photo of JerzDevl2000
4.97/5  rDev +16.7%
look: 4.5 | smell: 5 | taste: 5 | feel: 5 | overall: 5

I had never heard of Three Floyds before I was up at the New England Beer Festival and told a few people there that I might be heading to the midwest (the trip's off now, but that's another story) sometime around Christmas. Everyone's telling me "You have to pick up some Three Floyds" or "Do what you can to get your hands on the Alpha King". I didn't know what the big deal was, but two weeks ago, the liquor store in my town got this and a few of their other brews in from Indiana. Needless to say, I was pretty excited, but cautious if the beer could live up to the hype...

...today, I write this review with no caution in my voice, and undoubtedly one the best beers I've ever had in my hand. Yes, it's that freaking good! Poured out a nice orange-amber color with a slight haze/transluscence, and had a bouquet whose only rival is another Pale Ale which I adore (in Sierra Nevada). The head could have been a bit higher, but the full citrus and pine scents kick in nicely and intermingle wonderfully with the dry hops that make this pale ale different from any I've had before. One sip after that won me over - there was so much going on and it almost seemed like an orgainzed mess, but somehow, all of it fit together beautifully. Flavors are wonderful up front and they linger on top of the hops as I swished around the beer and swallowed it ever so slowly. Not having any time, or lots of time between sips didn't matter as the aftertaste was wonderful in itself. Neither heavy nor watery, there was very little malt aftertaste and the beer just danced around on my tongue. It's not often that I forgot that I'm drinking this early in the game!

The lacing could be a bit better, but everything else about this brew makes up for it. It's a lot to take in, even down to it's strong finish, and unlike any Pale Ale I've ever had. Floral notes can also be detected in it's taste, and it's not as buttery as the runner up from northern California is. That being said, this beer is unique, bold, and was worth all of the hype and advance word of mouth. Three Floyds could change the name of this brew to just "King" - I am certain that few, if any, would beg to differ...

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Photo of Fugazme
4.35/5  rDev +2.1%
look: 4 | smell: 4 | taste: 4.5 | feel: 4.5 | overall: 4.5

Excellent looking copper/orange beer with a minimal head. Murky and nice...

Aroma is good. Filled with hops, floral, citrus... but never overpoweringly so.

Taste is wonderful. Wonderful punch of hops and a touch of pine. Mellows out to a nice touch of malt. Great beer.

Mouthfeel is very good, as well.

Nicely done.

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Photo of ChiSox05
4.47/5  rDev +4.9%
look: 4.5 | smell: 5 | taste: 4 | feel: 4 | overall: 5

smell: hops across the board, floral with fruits all paired with citrus. put it in a tulip or wide wine glass and got strawberry-banana-kiwi smells, all the while sugary ruby red grapefruit as the base. great, strong hop scent, but not aggravating in the least, floral.

noticeably clear, amber/orange beer, in a pint glass poured a stout, off-white head that held up well. unique bottle art, looks great

the aftertaste is when the malt finally shows itself with a warm buttery biscuit flavor over most of the tongue. before that, the malt seemed to lead one hop taste to the next. hops are citrusy and oily. Mouth smacking fresh bitterness stays on the sides of the tongue with faint spiciness.

oily, smooth, balanced bitterness on sides of tongue, spiciness in aftertaste with some dryness, clean, crisp, fine carbonation

so drinkable that 3Floyd's can't make enough of it. 7.35% alchohol isn't believable if not for warmth and adding to your good mood after finding this. dry APA with a hop backbone that shows in every characteristic of this stuff, can't get enough of it lately. session king.

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Photo of Franchise
4.42/5  rDev +3.8%
look: 4 | smell: 4.5 | taste: 4.5 | feel: 4 | overall: 4.5

This beer pours a nice dark amber, with a nice white lace that sticks to the side of the glass. The smell is citrus, hops, and lemons and flavored with a sweetness of honey and the faintest hint of vanilla. The taste is great, it has a nice bitter kick from the hops as well as some great lemon flavor that is brought out by the honey. The mouthfeel on the palate is very clean. Great beer overall glad I was able to get my hands on this beer, I will def go back to it again.

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Photo of roan22
4.4/5  rDev +3.3%
look: 4.5 | smell: 4.5 | taste: 4 | feel: 4.5 | overall: 5

I've heard wonderful and amazing things about this beer and I was so excited to try it. When I poured it out, the appearance of the famed Three Floyd's Alpha King was not so pale, it was sort of a hazy, reddish-brown. But it was frothy and lacey on the glass. The carbonation appeared appropriate.

Not sure exactly how fresh this bottle was because the label fell off at some point between the cold case and my kitchen, and I couldn't find it (picked it up at the foodery). The smell is rich, intense, wonderful cascade hops, just right.

The taste was truly exceptional, and got even better as the beer warmed a tad. It tasted lovely; pine and citrus hops yet balanced perfectly by malts. It tasted surprisingly pale, the darker color is truly deceiving. The freshness and drinkability was ultimately the crown jewel of this beer. Its so rich, balanced and flavorful; truly is as good as everyone says it is on BA.

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Photo of cheers2beers
4.55/5  rDev +6.8%
look: 5 | smell: 5 | taste: 4.5 | feel: 4.5 | overall: 4

Poured into a snifter from the bottle. Can't tell if the guy on the bottle is a merman or a goblin of some sort.

Appearance: Pours a wonderfull bronze and honey hue. Nice head that did not grow too large and settled into a small layer of lace on top of this gorgeous liquid.

Smell: Hop and floral aromas mix right off the bat. As I keep smelling I detect very sweet apples almost like a crumb cake or struedel, very delicious. Great balanced aroma.

Taste: Very strange in that the hops are definitely there yet they are not. Balanced and yet etheral hop blend. Some slight citris rind, toast, apple mead, and an alcohol content that is superbly hidden.

Mouthfeel: Light to medium with average carbonation. Lightly syurpy and very pleasant.

Drinkability: WARNING! This beer has the potential to put you down for the night if you are not careful. I could easily drink 3-4 and not even realize it. It was a true pleasure to put this offering from FFF between my cheek and gums.

-cheers2beers-

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Photo of sacfly
4.62/5  rDev +8.5%
look: 4 | smell: 4.5 | taste: 4.5 | feel: 5 | overall: 5

Pours a slightly hazy golden orange color. Off white head with medium bubbles. Smell is a wonderful sweet citrus, orange and grapefruit.

First taste: hop flavors balanced very well with the malt. Just the right amount of crystal malt without being too sweet. Just the right amount of citrus and pine without being too over the top. Pine comes out more in the bitter aftertaste.

A quite tasty APA. I have waited for a long time for this and it did not disappoint. Just saw this is 7.35%ABV??? Wow. Never would have guessed.

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Photo of NJpadreFan
4.11/5  rDev -3.5%
look: 4 | smell: 3 | taste: 4.5 | feel: 4.5 | overall: 4.5

Alpha King Pale Ale

On tap at Isaac Newton's- Newtown, PA

Appearance- dark ruddy brown with a stcky foamy head.
Smell- not too strong. Pine and floral hops.
Taste- Very strong pine hops with a big smack of orange rind.
Mouthfeel- smooth with a kick in the mouth bitterness in the end.

Overall- an excellent beer on tap. Much better than its bottle conterpart. A definite for Pale Ale fans!!

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Photo of Oxymoron
4.5/5  rDev +5.6%
look: 4 | smell: 4 | taste: 5 | feel: 4 | overall: 4.5

No one can say quite like Don King. Likewise, no one can do it quite like Three Floyds and Alpha King Pale Ale.

Alpha King Pale Ale is a fantastic example of a hoppy Pale Ale and as Don King might say it's made "Only in America." Alpha King pours a rich clear amber color with good head retention and good lacing. Although dissipates, the white froth remains till the end. Picked up a 6 pack in Cincinnati at Jungle Jim's which I would say is as wild as Don Kings hair style. But still glad they had it.

First smell is wow, cascade hopes. Almost over powerful with floral and pine, but has a sweet smell that boxes you in the nose. Pale Ales can vary, but wow. Then your mouth take a dip for your froth-tastical tasteable delight and is overcome with hop-happiness. Per the smell one would think this would knock you out faster than a young Mike Tyson. But really it has a sweet kick at first and quickly blends with a superb malt and floral arrangement which then follows with a grapefruit finish. A very impressive taste.

This is a wonderful example of an excellent "mouthful" for a beer. There are a ton of ton of different things going on from the sweetness, to the combo malt and bitter kick and of course the grapefruit lasting flavor.

I feel lucky to have 6 of these beers and not surprised that it is ranked so high in BA. Three Floyds should be a who's who in breweries and be just as well known as Don King himself.

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Photo of unclederby
4.4/5  rDev +3.3%
look: 4.5 | smell: 4.5 | taste: 4.5 | feel: 4.5 | overall: 4

i've had this both in the bottle and on tap. currently i am drinking from the 12 oz.bottle... poured into my Bell's pint glass.

makes for a nice pour. copper color with a foamy, soapy one inch head with some active carbonation. after a few sips and a little swirling the head disappears but sticky lacing is left behind.
appetizing.

smell is sweet, citrusy with plenty of pine. the nose is big and full of hops.

alot of citrus fruit and hops too in the flavor. piney hop extract... this must be close to the taste of pine sap with orange peel added. 6% isn't too high, and the alcohol is well disguised.

this brew has body. thick and a bit resiny. good carbonation and viscocity, but still creamy.

ummmm... if you like IPA's then this beer is for you. no shortage of hops. an extreme APA that deliver's.

delicious, but moderation is advised.

this is the mother *** of all pale ales.

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Photo of Rastacouere
4.07/5  rDev -4.5%
look: 4 | smell: 4.5 | taste: 4 | feel: 3.5 | overall: 4

It pours a hazy amber body and despite being poured straight, it doesn't make such a big head. What is there is there to stay though and never leaves until the last sip. The smell is deep hops, especially citrus cascade, a great sniff for sure. In mouth, you receive the same treatment, tasty malt balanced with loads of hops bring you to a piney bitter aftertaste, but not before passing through a flower field where grapefruits fall from the sky. In my opinion, this would have won a lot from a thicker body, it was thin to medium and a little lacking to support such intensity (or I had too full-bodied beers recently). On the other hand, while it was one of the most tasty, it was also one of the most drinkable APAs I've had. Thanks Egajdzis!

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

Picked this one up at the foodery, again.

A murky dark amber color with thin head and lacing. A little darker than most of the IPAs Ive had and it really defines this rather different IPA.

The smell was sweet right a way. It definitely had the usual citrus but also a toasted or caramelnotes.

The taste was a pleasant surprise. I tasted the darkness and toastiness I had predicted and it was sweet to start and mildly bitter at the end.

I could surely drink this one again and it is defintely up there in my top IPAs. If you like IPAs try this one.

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Photo of Phyl21ca
3.5/5  rDev -17.8%
look: 3.5 | smell: 3.5 | taste: 3.5 | feel: 3.5 | overall: 3.5

Bottle: Poured a deep amber color ale with a small white foamy head with minimal retention. Aroma of strong bitter hops with some floral malt. Taste is mostly overpowered by hops with some caramel malt. I’m not sure I get what is suppose to be so great about this beer, seems to me that it lack balance. Will give this another try though.

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Photo of phnphilly
4.58/5  rDev +7.5%
look: 4.5 | smell: 4 | taste: 5 | feel: 4.5 | overall: 4.5

The beer poured a light Amber color and was almost clear. Bottle said bottle conditioned but similar to Dogfish IPA's I see no sediment at the bottom of the bottle. Beer poured with a good head and had a long lasting lace on the side of the glass.

Smell has a ton of hop arroma...very fruity

This beer tastes better than it smells and it smells really good. Hop flavor throughout but not overwhelming. Each sip and I wanted to drink more. One of the few times I don't mind living in PA because I had to purchase an entire case of this and I'm thrilled I did.

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Alpha King from 3 Floyds Brewing Co.
4.26 out of 5 based on 6,348 ratings.
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