Duet | Alpine Beer Company

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Brewed by:
Alpine Beer Company
California, United States

Style: American IPA

Alcohol by volume (ABV): 7.00%

Availability: Rotating

Notes / Commercial Description:
A West Coast IPA that features Amarillo and Simcoe hops "in harmony," giving a light, floral aroma. Duet is nicely bitter with the perfect amount of malt concealed behind the hoppy goodness. Immensely drinkable, amazingly light on its feet.

Added by SteveO1231 on 12-31-2005

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Reviews: 846 | Ratings: 4,196
Photo of drabmuh
4.3/5  rDev 0%
look: 4.5 | smell: 4.5 | taste: 4 | feel: 4.5 | overall: 4.5

Received this in a trade. Poured from a bottle into a standard pint glass. There is no bottling date on the bottle (22 ounce). Beer is heady and aggressive. Carbonation moderate to high and steady. After a careful pour I got about 6 ounces into my glass, the head took up the rest. White tiny bubbles giving way to larger bubbles at the top, looks like soap. Beer is light amber in color and mostly clear. There is a slight haze to it. There is aton of lacing as the head falls away from the glass.

This beer does not lack in the aroma department. The strong head and steady carbonation fill the immediate area surrounding the glass with the smell of pine. There is a hard to define sweetness about the smell as well. A very inviting IPA aroma.

I've been slowly adding more beer to the glass as the head disappears, its almost time to drink. Strong bitterness and a slight aftertaste of more pine based hop flavor. There is some funk in the midpalate of the beer so a slight deduction. Body of the beer is medium, its not as if you are chewing the hops down its less forced than that. Overall the drinkability is good and I think this is an excellent example of an American IPA.

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Photo of ShanePB
3.26/5  rDev -24.2%
look: 4 | smell: 3 | taste: 3.5 | feel: 3 | overall: 3

Bottle courtesy of DearthVader, straight from the West Coast, thanks for the chance to try this, Brian!

A: Crystal clear, golden sunny yellow body with a rather creamy white head. Nice retention cap throughout and some splotchy lacing is left behind.

S: Unfortunately this nose to me is terribly weak and lacking in both complexity and showcasing... of anything! Watery grains laid a sub-par base for this beer, backed only by very faint citrus hop notes. As it warmed, some pine and more earthy hops come forward but overall, a poor show of flavors.

T: Rice water, sweet corn-esque malt base, resiny and sticky hops coat the palate (the one saving grace of the taste). To me, this flavor profile seems to stray very very far from that "West Coast" IPA profile - this is more earthy and sappy. It's odd - something has to be off. This can't be how this beer should be, can it?

M: Extremely thin, almost watery though nice carbonation.

It was great to finally try something from Alpine, but I'm not sure what was going on here. Maybe I need to revisit another bottle at another time, but right now - this seemed to be very weak, (almost) flavorless and off.

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Photo of TheSevenDuffs
4.62/5  rDev +7.4%
look: 4.5 | smell: 5 | taste: 4.5 | feel: 4.5 | overall: 4.5

On tap at Toronado in San Diego on 7/5/11

A - Poured a medium yellow with some abmer throughout and and half finger of white head.

S - A sharp bitterness up front with pronounced grapefruit, tangerine and mango notes along with some pine. Malt sweetness is barely detectable. Definitely a west coast IPA. A very robust and inviting nose.

T - Strong flavours of grapefruit, orange rind, mango and pine. Not much sweetness at all. Very bitter overall but not overwhelmingly so. A fantastic IPA.

M - Medium body with a good chew. Lots of hop oils/resin detectable.

O - An outstanding IPA.

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Photo of Gobzilla
4.32/5  rDev +0.5%
look: 4 | smell: 4.5 | taste: 4.5 | feel: 4 | overall: 4

A: poured a golden orange with yellow highlights that had a thin bubbly head and left a little lacing sticking to the glass.

S: the first thing that popped out to me on the aroma is a very inviting bouquet of tropical fruits but with floral hops,slight pine, and a good sweet malt presence which also had underlying booze notes.

T: very nice tropical fruit flavor hit the palate like the nose presented with piney hops and grapefruit accents that did help on the punchy bitter bite. It also seemed to have slight candied sugar and a touch of booze. There was a good sweet malt backbone to help on the balance as well.

M: the was medium on body with a fair amount of carbonation which had a sweet, fruity, bitter, sticky, and slight crisp finish.

D: it drank very good with a decent hop profile and a very nice fruit flavor to accommodate the overall taste. Once again alpine comes through with a great west coast style IPA.

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Photo of Mebuzzard
4.01/5  rDev -6.7%
look: 5 | smell: 4 | taste: 4 | feel: 3.5 | overall: 4

Thanks to GRG1313 for this one.

Well, dammit. This beer looks fantastic. Orange side of golden, clear with a big white, fluffy head. It turned rocky in the middle; a floating island of foam. Niiice.

Aroma is hops forward. Orange, papaya, pineapple and grapefruit rind. Some off-biscuit in the background.

Taste is almost a perfect APA except I get some earthiness in the hops. The citrus and tropical flavors are backed-up by some butteriness and more of an EPA flavor. Too bad, because it takes the crisp bite out of the other hops. Not sure if this bottle was tainted, I drank it 1 day after receiving it via in-person trade. Still, though, it's quite good.

Drank it fairly quick, but as it warmed the butteriness became more evident.

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Photo of Gavage
4.18/5  rDev -2.8%
look: 4 | smell: 4 | taste: 4.25 | feel: 4.25 | overall: 4.25

Appearance: orange in color with a 1" head that slowly fades.

Smell: citrus and some pine are mellow on the nose.

Taste: caramel, orange, grapefruit, some pine, mango, and a nice bitterness rounds it out.

Mouthfeel: medium bodied beer. Crisp from start to finish with a bit of dryness arriving later.

Overall: a very drinkable and enjoyable IPA. Well balanced.

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Photo of Duff27
4.1/5  rDev -4.7%
look: 4 | smell: 4 | taste: 4 | feel: 4 | overall: 4.5

Little less than an inch fall white head. Body is a bright light orange, very clear. Lots of effervescence. Good lacing.

Bright piney citrus here in the whiffs.

Floral hops, very refreshing. Nice malt backbone, drink ability is high.

Medium mouthfeel. Carbonation blends well with this beer.

Pretty good Ipa here, very drinkable. Hats off to Alpine. Thanks kawilliam82.

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Photo of Mora2000
4.25/5  rDev -1.2%
look: 4.5 | smell: 4.5 | taste: 4.5 | feel: 3 | overall: 4

Thanks to Exiled for sharing this bottle.

Pours light orange with a huge white head. Very carbonated from the looks of things. The main aroma is piney hops. The flavor has a good amount of bitterness and pine flavor, but that is quickly washed off the tongue by the high, prickly carbonation. The huge amount of carbonation makes the beer taste slightly watery and takes away from the overall experience. That is my only complaint about the beer. With lower carbonation, I think I would have enjoyed it as much as good as Nelson or Pure Hoppiness.

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Photo of LiquidAmber
4.2/5  rDev -2.3%
look: 3.75 | smell: 4.25 | taste: 4.25 | feel: 4 | overall: 4.25

Poured into a Seattle Beer Week pint glass. Poured from a Green Flash embossed bottle. Pours a medium coppery amber with a thin white head that dissipates to patches leaving light lacing. Aroma of caramel malt, piney and citrus hops with a light dankness, grapefruit and a hint of light stone fruit.Flavor is citrus and piney hops, mildly dank, orange and grapefruit citrus, light tropical fruit, subdued but sturdy caramel malt. Finishes with lingering, lightly resinous grapefruit and piney hop bitterness. Medium bodied with good carbonation. A very nicely balanced, hoppy IPA with an emphasis on the herbal flavors of the hops as well as good assertive bitterness. Pleasant mixed fruit flavors from the hop combination. A quite nice IPA. I'm not a big fan of Green Flash's hop flavors usually, but they did a nice job on this one. I've never tried the Alpine brewed version, but this is great. Matches surprisingly well to its brewery description: balanced with malt concealed behind the hoppy goodness.

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Photo of dvmin98
4.5/5  rDev +4.7%

This is my 1000th beer. Had it on tap at Coin Op in San Diego. Nice and hoppy, but not overly. Good bitterness. Really balanced with the hops. Great hop nose. Glad this was my 1000th check in. Alpine is one of the best small breweries out there.

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Photo of Gueuzedude
3.95/5  rDev -8.1%
look: 4 | smell: 4 | taste: 4 | feel: 4.5 | overall: 3.5

A solid pour into my Lost Abbey Teku glass produces almost a two-finger thick, pale tan colored head that leaves quite a bit of lacing on the sides of my glass as I slowly work my way through this beer. The beer is a murky, copper tinged, amber color that shows a fairly hazed (though I can see the lettering on the other side of my glass if I hold it up just right) pale amber tinged, copper hue when held up to the light. The aroma smells nicely dank smelling; it is quite thick with hop aromatics that leans towards hemp oil, a slight garlic-chive note and cheesy pine needles that are all backed by a bright fruit notes of lychee and tangelo zest. The herbal character is definitely dominant, with the fruit playing a supporting role and nothing of the malt being noticeable at this point. If you really dig into the aroma the hops take on a woody and pepper like character; and the woody character really seems to be accentuated as the beer warms up. Really though this just reminds me of sticking my head into a bag of fresh "hemp" buds.

A touch of sweetness up front is accentuated more from the hop fruit character than sweet malt, but both play a part. The beer dries out as it rolls across my tongue and there is a herbaceous hop character that lingers with notes of pine, piquant hemp oil, very woody pepper and just a green hop quality. This is not aggressively bitter (especially considering how hoppy this beer is overall), though there is a fairly gripping bitterness to this beer that is accentuated a bit by a light carbonic bite from the low-medium level of carbonation here. Some touches of garlic chive and cheesy dank hops adds a definite edge to this IPA. The fruit character is perhaps a touch more subdued than it was in the nose, but does contribute flavors of lychee, tangelo, grapefruit zest and bright Curacao orange peel; the last three get accentuated in the finish as the beer lingers on the palate. Some soft, cracker like grain character comes out towards the finish of each sip as the beer warms up, but the malt definitely plays a secondary, supporting role here. This beer is pretty light and quaffable, especially for its strength and this is exactly what I like to see in an IPA

I wonder if this still only has Simcoe and Amarillo hops in it, this tastes awfully dank and herbal for those two hops alone, or perhaps the crop they used was fairly different from what I am used to. Definitely a hop lovers IPA, my personal preference wishes that more of the bright fruit character from the Amarillo hops came through, but this certainly serves up a needed hop fix right quickly.

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Photo of Stinkypuss
4.04/5  rDev -6%
look: 4.25 | smell: 4 | taste: 4 | feel: 4.25 | overall: 4

Pours a light golden color with white head and lace. Light aroma of west coast hops. Flavor very nice and mellow of citrus, pine and melon. Bitterness is mild, balancing and agreeable. A nice IPA that drinks more like a simple pale.

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Photo of biegaman
4.09/5  rDev -4.9%
look: 4 | smell: 4.25 | taste: 4 | feel: 4.25 | overall: 4

Duet harmoniously entwines golden and orange tones, their highlights spill out and diffuse across the table. Though of only modest foaminess the lacing expands like a marching army, conquering all corners of the glass. The patterns imprinted are intricate enough to pass for some kind of abstract modern art.

When reviewing Alpine beers I find it hard to sit still. Few breweries are capable of getting a hophead so excited. This one does not disappoint - its bouquet is enveloped in citrus pith and dripping with bitter resins. There's an air of tropical fruits but also a little bit of dankness, like a forest after a heavy rain.

That leafy flavour develops further on the palate, especially as the mandarin and grapefruit notes fade and that earthy, herbal aftertaste sets in. It's not particularly intense by IPA standards but will likely intimidate most mainstream drinkers. Welcome to the jungle, baby. This is what the style is all about.

To that end, one won't taste any alcohol but, considering this is 7% and drinks arguably much easier than it should at that strength, maybe watch for it later. Those that don't mind a few IBUs will probably want to session this - I thought there was a hole in my glass the liquid emptied out of it so fast.

Let's be honest: it's not like there's any shortage of IPAs in Southern California. Heck, one doesn't even have to leave San Diego to find many of the world's best. The regional standard is high. To earn and maintain a reputation like Alpine has really, really says something about them...

When it comes to hops, Alpine is the real deal. As with Exponential Hoppiness, Hoppy Birthday, Pure Hoppiness, Duet is as good as everyone says it is. Believe the ratings online and know that if you want to truly taste the pinnacle of California IPAs then that stuff from Alpine are must-try.

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Photo of yourefragile
4.39/5  rDev +2.1%
look: 4 | smell: 5 | taste: 4.5 | feel: 3.5 | overall: 4

22 oz bottle poured into a tulip. Thanks womencantsail.

The beer is a clear bright golden glow with a thick slightly off white head supported by a steady stream of tiny bubbles of carbonation. Lots of thin streaks of lacing as well. The aroma is the highlight of this, exploding with sweet tropical and citrus fruits, particularly pineapple was my first thought. Flavor follows the nose with an initially sweet citric and tropic hop flavor but though out the body and into the finish the malt backbone and a slight graininess start to balance out the sweet. Mouthfeel is medium thick, with soft carbonation, resulting in a not particularly clean or crisp taste and finish. The finish almost tastes watery at times. Overall reminds me of Sculpin and has the aroma and flavor of an exceptional IPA, but the body leaves something to be desired for me.

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Photo of Halcyondays
4.77/5  rDev +10.9%
look: 4 | smell: 4.5 | taste: 5 | feel: 4.5 | overall: 5

On-tap at Blue Palms,

A: Pours golden with a nice white head, some lace.

S: Fragant pine and cedar hops, tropical notes, robust.

T: Incredibly tasty and interesting, an amalgam of great hop character, from pine/wood to tropical fruit - pineapple and guava. More flavour than 90% of the DIPAs I've had, truly wonderous. I'm in Simcoe heaven rigt now.

M: Chewy and resiny with hops, but has a lightness and crispness about it on the palate which makes it very easy drinking.

D: One of the best IPAs I've ever had, a must try again if I ever see it on tap. This beer is beautiful, my new favourite IPA I think, just wish it was more available.

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Photo of Georgiabeer
4.92/5  rDev +14.4%
look: 4.5 | smell: 5 | taste: 5 | feel: 4.5 | overall: 5

Thanks got to Grant for obtaining this growler. Thanks! I really enjoyed this one! I generally really like Alpine's brews, and this one is no exception, in fact I thought this was fantastic. Pours a dark golden with a medium head that is pure white and leaves some great lacing. Not bad from a growler. The smell is a clean burst of pine- like walking into a pine forest after a spring rain. There is just enough clean, sweet, honeyed malt to balance the beautiful pine aromas. Perfect for me in the flavor department. Beautifully balanced with a blast of sweet pine and a hint of citrus. The mouthfeel is clean, sweet, and slightly spicy. Classic beer, really, really drinkable- I could drink these all night. Wonderful! I also really like the way that Alpine's IPAs and doubles each display a different hop note/mix- they don't at all taste the same. Great brewery!

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Photo of tobelerone
4.42/5  rDev +2.8%
look: 4.5 | smell: 4.25 | taste: 4.5 | feel: 4.25 | overall: 4.5

On tap at the brewery.

Dark gold, nearly clear beer with a fluffy white head and tons of sticky lacing.

Heavily aromatic; big citrus and dank, resinous pine. Orange fruitiness. Noticeable sweetness and a pungent bitter punch.

Citrus, pine, strong bitterness abounds. Lots of orange, pineapple and grapefruit. Just a touch of sweetness and a subtle underlying maltiness playing a supporting role to the wonderfully fresh hop flavors.

Medium-full bodied, medium carbonation, feels smooth, creamy, and rounded. Crisp finish as well. Top notch.

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Photo of John_M
4.24/5  rDev -1.4%
look: 4 | smell: 4.25 | taste: 4.25 | feel: 4.25 | overall: 4.25

An easy to enjoy and appreciate IPA from Alpine. Pretty dry and bitter on finish, and yes, a bit more tropical fruit in the mouth would be nice, but this is a very solid IPA from the folks at Alpine. Glad to see this on a fairly regular basis around town now (in Eugene and PDX).

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Photo of flagmantho
4.03/5  rDev -6.3%
look: 4 | smell: 4 | taste: 4 | feel: 3.75 | overall: 4.25

Poured from 22oz bomber into a dimpled mug.

Appearance: light orange hue with a moderate haze and effervescence. Head is a finger of frothy ivory foam which leaves a nice lace as it dissipates. I like it.

Smell: rich and piney hop aroma with a dose of grapefruit. This is a classic West Coast IPA aroma; I dig it.

Taste: big and rich piney, earthy, grapefruity hops. The underlying malt is also rather on the sweet side, which just adds to the "bigness" of this beer. Quite tasty.

Mouthfeel: medium body with a bit of a rocky carbonation and a decent creaminess. Not bad.

Overall: this is a really, really nice beer. It is a classic flavor profile, very well executed. I am glad we can get Alpine up here in Washington now.

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Photo of GreesyFizeek
4.4/5  rDev +2.3%
look: 3.75 | smell: 4.25 | taste: 4.5 | feel: 4.5 | overall: 4.5

On tap at The Tap and Mallet in Rochester, NY.

Pours a light clear amber, with a half inch head, and a little bit of lacing.

Smells like grapefruit, orange, lots of grass and pine, and a small smidgen of sweet malt.

I get grapefruit zest, orange zest, grapefruit rind, bitter pine resin, sweet grain and malt, and a good amount of perfume. This is moderately bitter, not exceedingly so, with a small amount lingering after each sip.

This is medium bodied, with a really crisp and sweet mouthfeel, and a higher level of carbonation.

Another great IPA from Alpine. Really well crafted, really easy drinking, and just really tasty.

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Photo of HopHead84
4.42/5  rDev +2.8%
look: 4 | smell: 4.5 | taste: 4.5 | feel: 4 | overall: 4.5

Bottle picked up by my buddy ArthurPendragon. Consumed on 10/11/2009 and poured into a snifter. The beer appears a transparent and vibrant golden with a one finger fizzy white head. Retention and lacing are both decent.

The nose is of orange, grapefruit, and a little pine. The floral hop presence is strong, and the malt is light and crackery.

The flavor opens up with pine and bitter grapefruit. It's quite resiny, and the malt provides a crackery foundation. It makes its presence known without imparting any real sweetness. Bitterness is at an upper medium level. The finish is dry, light, and crisp, with lingering pine/grapefruit bitterness.

Upper light bodied with a dry and sticky mouthfeel. As I noted with the bottle of Nelson that I tried earlier tonight, carbonation could be kicked up a notch. It's at a pretty low level for an IPA and not as carbonated as the draft incarnation. Great stuff. A light and flavorful IPA, though I definitely prefer the draft version to this bottled batch.

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Photo of dar482
4.93/5  rDev +14.7%
look: 4.75 | smell: 4.75 | taste: 5 | feel: 5 | overall: 5

The beer comes in a very familiar IPA color. Golden orange, a bit hazy, a small white head with a good amount of lacing.

The aroma reminds me a bit of Jai Alai. Tropical fruits, tons of orange, sweet orange peel, tangerine. Some pineapple, peach, and papaya. A very good smelling beer.

The flavor is where this beer explodes. There’s this stiff punch of pineapple and grapefruit essence. Tangerine and sweet citrus fruit are in there in the front and then onto the Simcoe. This beer is not sweet as it simply has the essence of the hops with a bready backbone to move the beer along. The finish again moves more into some grapefruit and some pine as it warms. Not a very bitter beer at all, but very clean and dry.

The beer is gorgeously clean and easy drinking. Quite a light body on this as it drinks down so easy, yet has tons of hop flavor. Easily one of the best IPAs out there. It’s not a mind blowing beer exactly, but it’s so well constructed and so refreshing. I would love to have this every day.

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Photo of corby112
3.74/5  rDev -13%
look: 3.5 | smell: 4.5 | taste: 3.5 | feel: 3.5 | overall: 3.5

22oz. bottle received in a recent trade, courtesy of WeeObese.

Pours a clear pale golden yellow color with lots of visible carbonation bubbling up and a frothy 1.5 finger white head that as decent retention, slowly fading into a thin lasting cap.

Sweet citrus hop aroma that is slightly earthy with a faint grahamcrakery malt presence. Hints of grapefruit, orange peel, mango and pineapple accompany the dank oily resinous hop presence. Slightly piny giving it a touch of earthiness and a subtle malt backbone with hints of biscuit and graham cracker. There's also a sweet alcohol presence in the nose.

Slightly chewy, resinous medium body with a lot of dry earthy hop bitterness up front along with some tropical and citrus fruit flavor all slightly balanced by a subtle malt backbone.
Very earthy up front with a lot of dry pine bitterness which lingers throughout into a very dry finish. The citrus character from the aroma is there but very less prominent than I expected or hoped for. Hints of lemon peel and grapefruit along with some pineapple notes. Subtle malt backbone with hints of graham cracker and biscuit. There's also some strong sweet alcohol evident mid palate and the high ABv is not very well masked. Overall this beer is a bit to dry and bitter for my liking with too strong of an alcohol presence and not enough balance. The balance that I speak of is not a lack of malt, just a lack of the flavors blending with each other. Not nearly enough citrus, sweet flavor for my taste. Decent but a bit overhyped.

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Photo of JohnParadee
4.61/5  rDev +7.2%
look: 4.5 | smell: 4.75 | taste: 4.5 | feel: 5 | overall: 4.5

Believe the hype! This mutha is fo RE-al.

Poured from 22 oz bomber acquired via trade into chilled pint glass. Beautiful light orange color, nice fluffy 1-inch white head, and lots of tiny bubbles with ample sticky lacing throughout. The nose is a gorgeous mango/grapefruit/papaya olfactory orgasm. And the flavors on the palate, while less fruity/floral than the nose, do not disappoint. To the contrary, piney resin and grapefruit notes lend a mellow balance to the solidly structured hop profile, with virtually zero alcohol burn evident. The mouthfeel is as full and chewy as an IPA can get, while the finish is long, smooth, lasting, and complex.

Really love this beotch. Will come back to her lair often!

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Photo of Rhettroactive
4.4/5  rDev +2.3%
look: 4.5 | smell: 4.5 | taste: 4.5 | feel: 3.5 | overall: 4.5

From 22oz bomber to nonic pint glass on 10/16/11
*From notes

-- An epic thanks goes out to SirRuss for the West Coast love --

A: Unfiltered 14k golden in color. A good pour = a sticky 1.5 finger head. Crazy retention, it sticks around from start to finish. Massive, thick gobs of lacing surround the interior of the glass.

S: Ahhh...this smells like the Left Coast. Juicy. Hoppy. Extraordinary.

T: Über juicy, yet it's not IN YOUR FACE extreme. It's laid back and easy going. The balance here is masterful. It's exceptionally drinkable. The beer's a bit bitter, yet there's a golden kiss of malt to level it off. Wonderful stuff.

M: I'd like a bit more body. It's a slight bit thin, and it lacks the kind of carbonation and texture to really make this portion of the beer a standout.

O: I love Alpine. Literally. Having just visited their brewery outside of San Diego, I can honestly say that it holds a special place in my beer-filled heart. And like all of their beers I've had the pleasure of quaffing, Duet is simply beautiful. This is a one of the best AIPA's around, and something I hope all of you BA's get a chance to encounter firsthand. It's amazing what a few good folks can do with water, grains, hops and yeast.

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Duet from Alpine Beer Company
4.3 out of 5 based on 4,196 ratings.
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