Alpha King | 3 Floyds Brewing Co.

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1,801 Reviews
Alpha KingAlpha King

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

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

For Trade:
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Reviews: 1,801 | Ratings: 6,305
Photo of BrewIndy
3.88/5  rDev -8.9%
look: 4.5 | smell: 4 | taste: 4 | feel: 3.5 | overall: 3.5

A: Poured with about a fingers worth of head that went away pretty quickly. Has an amazing dark orange color to it. It actually looks just like a cup of properly steeped Lipton tea. Except for the head of course.

S: It smells pretty good. It's very sweet and inviting and all that. I haven't tasted it yet but you can almost taste the bitterness to it just by smelling.

T: It's actually doesn't have as much bite as I thought it would. The bite definitely waits until the end to hit you though but up front you have nice smooth citrusy flavors. That goes into some malty balance leaving with a bit of bitterness. It's fairly sweet... almost too sweet, but nicely balanced.

M: It feels smooth in my mouth. A great feel. It leaves the back of my tongue feeling strange though, not sure if I like that. Kind of makes me want to take another drink to get rid of that sensation.

D: I could drink a couple of these and be content. Not sure if this is one I'd pick up a sixer of but I'd grab a pint when I'm out to dinner or out with friends anytime.

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Photo of DrewZ926
3.88/5  rDev -8.9%
look: 4 | smell: 3.5 | taste: 4 | feel: 4 | overall: 4

A- Rich amber and copper pour, an inch of off-white head and only a bit of lacing

S- far more sweet and spicy malt than I had expected, perhaps this bottle is a bit older? lots of toffee and caramel with ample supporting hop character. that being said, I would've liked more citrus as advertised.

T- very refreshing hop bitterness, nice complement to the sweet malt backbone, slightly floral and earthy, a touch of orange citrus

M- full bodied and well carbonated

O- a very solid APA with fantastic flavors and superb balance. citric and malty at the same time. would have liked a lighter, less malt forward profile, though would certainly seek this beer out again. drinks big for the style.

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Photo of yamar68
3.88/5  rDev -8.9%
look: 4.5 | smell: 4 | taste: 3.5 | feel: 4.5 | overall: 4

Pours a hazy but lively bronze body, with a milky finger of well-retaining and lacing head.

Mellow pineapple and mango, orange juice, bitter pine qualities, sweet bread, balanced but straight forward.

Sweet malts are the first thing I notice on the tongue... some citrus peel or lemon zest beneath that. Dries up pretty quickly on the finish. Not as pungent a hop profile as I was anticipating. Definitely makes for an easy drinking beer though.

Big thanks to brew33 for giving me the chance to try this out!

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Photo of FreshmanPour77
3.88/5  rDev -8.9%
look: 4 | smell: 3.5 | taste: 4 | feel: 4 | overall: 4

Reviewed on 8-5-10
Reviewed cold from a bottle to a glass

A - Pours with one finger of foam, cloudy amber color, nice lacing ring with a decent amount of carbonation present

S - Hops, orange peel and roasted malts

T /M - Smooth at first but finishes with a piney bitter taste along with noticeable citrus taste to it

D - Pretty drinkable APA, and easily have more than one in a sitting. I would for sure get this brew again and I would recommend it

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Photo of BierRunner
3.88/5  rDev -8.9%
look: 3.75 | smell: 3.75 | taste: 4 | feel: 4 | overall: 3.75

My bottle is from 7/21/16, so perhaps some of the hoppy complexity has faded. Interesting nose but not much citrus. Also, a bit darker than I would have expected. Taste has good balanced bitterness but Maltier than is usual for a pale ale. I will seek out a fresher candidate for comparison.

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Photo of PartyHatjo
3.88/5  rDev -8.9%
look: 4 | smell: 3.5 | taste: 4 | feel: 4 | overall: 4

Appearance: Hazy Orange/Copper hued beer with a sticky tan-white head.

Aroma: Orange/grapefruit hoppiness with some biscuit hints.

Taste: Citrus hops are the first thing you notice. But a good malt backbone is present. Light caramel and a breadiness define the malt. Doesn't seem to be an overly complex malt bill, but the simplicity is what makes it delicious.

Mouthfeel: Well-balanced brew. Bitterness hits early and late, but the medium bodied light sweetness balances it well.

Drinkability: Couldn't drink it all night, but wouldn't mind having a couple in a session.

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Photo of GreatPondBrewer
3.88/5  rDev -8.9%
look: 4 | smell: 3.5 | taste: 4 | feel: 4 | overall: 4

Just a decent all around pale ale. Deep copper color with an off-white head and a decent amount of lacing. Smell was judiciously garnished with piney hops as if the brewers merely dropped dripping hop cones into the boil. To me it was a somewhat raw unrefined smell that was not balanced exceptionally well by any malts. Taste was very true to style with more hops although a tad on the citrus side in the taste with a cracker like malt taste and a fair bit of alcohol punch. Much more alcoholic than expected for a pale ale so this is not what you would call a session beer, but a nice way to mix things up and kick your taste buds around a bit. The unrefined hops make it something to drink towards the end of the night when you are ready to not taste anything else.

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Photo of cbutova
3.88/5  rDev -8.9%
look: 4 | smell: 3.5 | taste: 4 | feel: 4 | overall: 4

Shared by Chico1985 at our last tasting, another good beer he traded for.

A- Clear red with an off-white head that has decent retention. Good cloud atop the ale that leaves a coat of fine lace.

S- Slight citrus and pine above a caramel malt, sweet backbone. Almost like a lighter version of a Barleywine. Grapefruit. Could use some strength.

T- Once again, the malt and hops remind me of a less aggressive version of a Barleywine. Citrus/zest/grapfruit hops for the most part over a malt profile that is a bit nutty, toasty and slightly sweet. Close to an IPA but more malty.

MF- Light creamy body with moderate carbonation. Slightly bitter on the palate.

DB- Unique flavor for a pale ale. Good hop presence lends nice citrus flavors. Really felt like a small Barleywine IPA hybrid.

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Photo of BrokenStones
3.88/5  rDev -8.9%
look: 4 | smell: 3.5 | taste: 4 | feel: 4 | overall: 4

A: Auburn/Orange....2" inch golden head, nice lacing, poured into a Goose Island snifter.

Smell: Hops, honey, mellow, not serious depth.

Taste: Hops up font, citrus and honey, nice finish with a bit bitter and fresh hops.

Mouth Feel: nice carbonation, good finish on the pallet.

Overall: A very solid pale ale. A pleasure to drink, if it was available I would have it regularly. Find it and drink it.

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Photo of DrunkenMaster
3.88/5  rDev -8.9%
look: 4 | smell: 3.5 | taste: 4 | feel: 4 | overall: 4

On tap at Coles. Great looking orange/amber colored beer. Smells a bit sweet with some tropical fruit and floral notes. Moderately bitter and fruity. I get berries in there somewhere. Alcohol comes through late but its subtle and adds to the flavor. An all around unique and tasty pale.

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Photo of Treebs
3.88/5  rDev -8.9%
look: 4 | smell: 3.5 | taste: 4 | feel: 4 | overall: 4

Had this on draft at the Yardhouse in Glenview. Served in a pint glass.

A: Pours a clear amber color with some lighter straw notes around the edges. A one finger bubbly white head forms on the pour and subsides to thin film. Leaves some sticky lace behind.

S: Slighty malty with nice high hop presence. The main note is grapefruit and with a subtle floral component mixed in.

T: The taste follows the nose, but with the hops more amplified. The oaty malt provides a nice backbone for the citrus hop flavors with a slight flowery sweetness.

M: Light to medium bodied with a sticky mouthfeel to it. Nice bubbly carbonation though and the finish is slightly bitter.

O:This is definitely more hopped up than I remember from years past. It drinks more like an IPA than a pale ale, but is still a delicious and hoppy brew.

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Photo of regspeir
3.88/5  rDev -8.9%
look: 4 | smell: 3.5 | taste: 4 | feel: 4 | overall: 4

12 oz bottle (courtesy of Brundo4) into a Duvel tulip.
Pours a small one-finger head that dissaptes quickly. Color is a dark, hazy amber. Nose has some pine but prevalent bready malts and caramel. This beer is unique - nothing else I can compare it to. The hops and bitterness are forward. There is citrus in there and sweet malts that kick in part way through. By that or whatever means, the bitterness goes and is only faint in the finish. Refreshing. It has a light mouthfeel and good carbonation. At 6% and a warm day, could delve into this more, if I had the chance. Nice.

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Photo of casemw
3.88/5  rDev -8.9%
look: 4 | smell: 3.5 | taste: 4 | feel: 4 | overall: 4

Thanks for the trade beereality!

Pours a deep amber color with quarter inch head and slight lacing which lasts till the end. This one doesn't appear to be filtered, at least not very tight.

As expected, strong hop aroma of citrus and pine. Much like your typical west-coast style pale.

A nicely balanced pale from Three Floyds. Not nearly as bitter as I expected from the aroma.

Mouthfeel is pretty light, and the carbonation is just right...natural for sure. I could drink a few of these and be just fine.

This being my first beer from 3F I am very impressed and am anxious to try their others. If you ever have a chance to try this beer I highly recommend it.

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Photo of tiger88
3.88/5  rDev -8.9%
look: 4 | smell: 3.5 | taste: 4 | feel: 4 | overall: 4

Had this one on draft the night before DLD and on DLD as well. Liked it and bought a 6 pack to bring home. I initially ordered this one to come down off my Alpha Kong high. It was a very pleasant APA. It was a clear, golden-orange with a nice, fluffy white head. It left a little lacing as the beer disappeared from my glass. A strong hop aroma did not translate into an overwhelming hoppy taste, which I was glad of since the Kong almost destroyed my tastebuds. It was a clean, crisp tasting pale ale. Light in the mouth with minimal aftertaste, this beer would be a great addition to my regular rotation....if I didn't live in Alabama.

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Photo of mjl21
3.88/5  rDev -8.9%
look: 4 | smell: 3.5 | taste: 4 | feel: 4 | overall: 4

Acquired in a trade with alleykatking...thanks Josh!

12 ounce bottle poured into a snifter. No bottling info is given and no abv info is given.

A-Pours a semi-hazy amber that veers toward the darker side of the amber spectrum. When poured a small white head disappears very fast to a small ring. The head dissolves into a cool spotted print in the middle of the glass. Nice spotted lacing is left as this goes down.

S-Not nearly as citrusy as I was expecting. Would say I get more sweet malt and grassy/floral/earthy hops in the nose.

T-Get some citrus hop flavor and grassy hop flavor along with a lot of sweet caramel malt.

M-Light to medium bodied with lighter carbonation. Is very smooth and the hops leave a pleasant level of lingering bitterness.

D-Goes down easily.

All in all I thought this was a pretty good beer. I think I was expecting more hops than were delivered. I would love to try this fresh on tap to use as a comparison. If this were available in CA I would definitely pick it up due to its relatively low abv and the fact it goes down easily and does not fill you up fast.

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Photo of punkrkr27
3.88/5  rDev -8.9%
look: 4 | smell: 3.5 | taste: 4 | feel: 4 | overall: 4

Deep copper pour, with a one-finger, white head. The aroma has loads of sweet caramelized barley with peppery, spicy, piny hops to balance. The flavor follows through from the nose and adds a few notes of mango and toast also. Creamy medium body with a slightly aqueous finish.

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Photo of IowaBiertrinker
3.88/5  rDev -8.9%
look: 4 | smell: 3.5 | taste: 4 | feel: 4 | overall: 4

A: Orangey-brown to Burnt-orange. Pours with a lasting 1 finger tan colored head.

S: Hops dominate with some subtle malt.

T: Hops dominate again but are not overpowering. Some mellow maltiness comes through with a medium, clean finish.

M: Medium Mouthfeel - catching some Carbonation yet.

O: Drank this chilled around 50 degrees. Nice drink for a warm day. Paired it with a cheesy brat and it was a good combination. Not real complex, but a nice, drinkable beer.

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Photo of capra12
3.88/5  rDev -8.9%
look: 4 | smell: 3.5 | taste: 4 | feel: 4 | overall: 4

Reviewed solo served out of a pint glass.

Appearance: Poured 2 finger head, tangerine orange with a shade of brown, spotty thin lacing.

Smell: piney hops with a hint of floral hops.

Taste: Upon first sip, it get a huge piney hop with a hop bitter middle leading to a mildly floral finish, but letting this brew warm up does really bring out the malt profile in this Pale ale. As this warmed there is a ckean piney and malty open as a hop bitter profile sinks in as the finish comes leaving a mild hop bitter, mildly malty aftertaste.

Mouthfeel: Light bodied, with minimal carbonation and slightly smooth.

Drinkability: I would have this again and I recommend this to someone who enjoys a solid Pale ale with a malt profile that really makes this enjoyable.

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Photo of thethrone
3.88/5  rDev -8.9%
look: 4 | smell: 3.5 | taste: 4 | feel: 4 | overall: 4

A - Pours a deep copper with small white head which quickly disappeared into a thin ring.

S - Smells of pine, and caramel malt. Also a hint of fruity sourness creeps in at the end.

T - Subdued hop flavor, with a malty backbone.

M - Medium body, very smooth, not a lot of carbonation.

D - I get the impression that the bottle I had didn't hold up as well as most, since it is missing the same hoppy profile most others are talking about. Still a great brew, but I would be curious to try it again fresh for comparison.

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Photo of Thur123
3.87/5  rDev -9.2%
look: 3.5 | smell: 4 | taste: 3.5 | feel: 4 | overall: 4.5

A somewhat heavy pour yields very little head on this one. The color is dark burnt orange with moderate carbonation. Looks more like an IPA than most APAs I've seen. The smell is crisp and hoppy, both bitter and citrus smells coming through. A sweet malty backbone shows up too making this bold, slightly subdued but balanced.

Glug glug glug

The flavor reflects the smell mostly. I've a feeling I should have gotten this fresher somehow but I'm glad to be able to try it either way. The flavor is balanced and the hops that do come though are citrus all the way. A nice bittersweet edge with lemon feeling most prominent. The malt is sweet and kind of dry, it reminds me of a brown ale at this point. Overall a good APA by my standards but sadly I feel I've an old bottle so....bummer.

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Photo of gdogalishus
3.87/5  rDev -9.2%
look: 3.5 | smell: 4 | taste: 4 | feel: 3 | overall: 4

Serving from a bottle into a tumbler.
Serving temperature 46 degrees F.
pH measured 4.51
Alcohol content measured was 7.8% by residual extract method

Significantly higher alcohol content measured than that quoted for this beer... double checked the measurements.
Alpha King poured nicely into the glass and resulted in a rather typical pale ale in appearance. Very clear with a 3/4 to 1 inch head of fluffy bubles with a ever so slight green hue in the head. The bottle claims that this beer is bottle conditioned and that is the reason for the slight haze in the beer. I didn't notice the haze at all and can read this review through the tumbler. The head dissipated quickly in the glass. Low carbonation almost vanished by mid glass. The color was a hint dark for a pale ale, but not out of the ordinary.
The aroma was distinctively hoppy. Flavor was an initial maltly sweetness for a brief moment, then a rush of hop bitterness that spread across the entire mouth and throat. The mouthfeel was a little more thick than I expected, but I didn't notice until after the third or fourth swallow.
I feel this beer is a perfectly acceptable example of an American Pale Ale and Three Floyds deserves the praise and recognition they recieve for this beer. I will drink this again.

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Photo of bmwats
3.87/5  rDev -9.2%
look: 3.75 | smell: 3.5 | taste: 4 | feel: 4 | overall: 4

Poured from a 12 oz bottle into a nonic.

A: Amber hue. Pours a 1 finger, foamy, white head. Settles slowly leaving a blanket of foam on the surface. Beer ring lacing.

S: Pine resin, caramel, and pecan.

T: Pine, fresh tea leaf, and oak.

M: Earthy and hearty. Bittersweet finish.

D: Sip and enjoy.

Atmosphere is really nice. Nice head, foamy blanket, and beer ring lacing. Nose is sweet pine resin, candied and wood notes. Pine, tea leaf, and some woody tones. Overall, this is a really good quaff.

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Photo of harrymel
3.87/5  rDev -9.2%
look: 4.5 | smell: 5 | taste: 3.5 | feel: 3 | overall: 3.5

Thanks (again!) to Jrod1969 for this extra!
Poured to NB globe.

A: Pours a cherry orange ale with supreme clarity. A 2.5 finger peanut head falls to 0.5 finger. No apparent carbonation. Jesus, lacing like a corset!

S: Mmmm. Beautiful malts help accentuate the herbal, piney, resinous hop profiles. Goddam, this keeps me leaning in. The nose reminds me of a really good red ale, not really so much a Pale, but I ain't a hater.

T: The malts die down a bit here. Allowance for the hops to shine, provide the bitterness and balance I anticipated in the nose. There's a woodiness and oaky profiling that nearly dominate the entire palate experience.

M: Medium body with medium-high carbonation. Slight slickness initially, then dies out within seconds. Average.

D: This beer is drinkable. However, the taste puts me off a bit. Wish there were less early bittering hops to prevent such severe dryness.

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Photo of BrewCrew2010
3.87/5  rDev -9.2%
look: 3.5 | smell: 4 | taste: 3.5 | feel: 4 | overall: 4.5

A: A hazy light brown hue capped with a 1 finger off white creamy head. After each sip it leaves behind a decent amount of sticky lacing.

S: Right off the bat I thought I was smelling an IPA. A strong floral hop aroma with a sweet malty backbone like caramelized sugar. Hints of clove and other spices are in the background, but I can't quite put my finger on it.

T: A very well balance flavor of a bitter hops up front and mildly sweet caramel malts. A bit earthy with strong hints of pine and spices and a juicy finish. Although it has a great flavor, almost too hoppy for an APA.

M: An oily texture with lively carbonation and a medium body.

D: I absolutely love this beer. What played against it is that if you handed me this beer and asked me what style it was, I would say it was an IPA. It would be a let down if I hated that style or was really in the mood for an APA. Put that aside, very easy to drink and great flavor. I would definitely get this again!

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Photo of Tone
3.86/5  rDev -9.4%

Pours a hazy, copper color. One inch head of an off-white color. Great retention and great lacing. Smells of resin, pine, strong hops, sweet malt, alcohol, and strong tea/hop essence. Mouth feel is sharp and crisp, with an average carbonation level. Tastes of resin, pine, hops, sweet malt, and alcohol. Overall, great appearance, strong pine/resin/hop aroma and body, and decent blend.

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Alpha King from 3 Floyds Brewing Co.
4.26 out of 5 based on 6,305 ratings.
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