Nelson
Alpine Beer Company

NelsonNelson
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Style:
IPA - American
Ranked #2
ABV:
7%
Score:
98
Ranked #254
Avg:
4.45 | pDev: 8.31%
Reviews:
884
Ratings:
4,331
From:
Alpine Beer Company
 
California, United States
Avail:
Rotating/Seasonal
Wants
  1,391
Gots
  685
SCORE
98
World-Class
NelsonNelson
Notes: A Golden Rye IPA - An outstanding hop from New Zealand, Nelson Sauvin, is generously used throughout the brewing and dry-hopping of this unique beer. European rye is added for a smooth, malty addition to flavor. 1.065 OG 7% AB
Reviews: 884 | Ratings: 4,331 | Log in to view all ratings and sort
Photo of BubbleBobble
BubbleBobble from New York

4.45/5  rDev 0%
look: 4.25 | smell: 4.25 | taste: 4.5 | feel: 4.75 | overall: 4.5

Pours a hazy orange into a paper hotel coffee cup with a big 3" head, excellent retention and lacing despite the vessel. Nose is tropical juice at first before turning into floral honey and pine as it warms; a hint of malt, grain, and maybe some diesel (though might be the cup). Taste is nicely balanced between sweet, juicer hop elements and a lingering bitterness on the finish. Super smooth on the palate with no hint of alcohol. Glad to finally give it a try.

Nov 10, 2021
Photo of BillAfromSoCal
BillAfromSoCal from California

3.82/5  rDev -14.2%
look: 3.25 | smell: 3.75 | taste: 4 | feel: 3.75 | overall: 3.75

Canned 3/10/21. Consumed from a tulip glass 8/6/21. I would have liked to have tried a fresher version, but smell and taste were both examples of the Nelson hop. Disappointing Look: very small head that was very short lived and there were solids in the beer. It was hazier than I expected. Quite hoppy. My ratings here are somewhat generous and take into account the possible effect of canning date vs. consumption date. With all the great IPAs out there I did not feel that this was a stellar example worth repeating. I was very surprised to see a 98 pt rating.

Aug 07, 2021
Photo of blazerkor
blazerkor from Nevada

4.85/5  rDev +9%
look: 4.75 | smell: 4.75 | taste: 5 | feel: 4.75 | overall: 4.75

It smells like fresh pine and a little dank. Then the more I smell it i get some breadwater sweetness but the piny hops are the predominant scent.

Oh yeah, now I get the hype. The taste is so clean. First it's barely sweet with a hint of pine and then it's a really bright piny hoppiness.

It's not quite as thin as most IPAs with a medium body.  The finish is bitter and then dank. It lasts for a long time.

Overall it is one of the better IPAs I've had.  It's smooth, balanced and incredibly refreshing. I give this one a really great 5.7 out of 6.

May 09, 2021
Photo of Dan2213
Dan2213 from Pennsylvania

4.24/5  rDev -4.7%
look: 4 | smell: 4.25 | taste: 4.25 | feel: 4.25 | overall: 4.25

Look is opaque orange and more hazy than you would think. Nice one finger of white head with decent retention. Smell is white white and cedar with notes of tropical fruits. Taste is white whine with grape notes. I always seem to get a wood/Cedar flavor from the Nelson Sauvignon hops. Not hating it at all. Feels soft and approachable, easy to drink. This beer is outstanding and worth its reputation

Apr 25, 2021
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DavetotheB from Pennsylvania

4.17/5  rDev -6.3%
look: 4.5 | smell: 4.25 | taste: 4 | feel: 4.25 | overall: 4.25

From a 12oz can dated 3/9/21 into a weizen glass.

Pours an opaque orangish yellow with about two and a half fingers of white head. Excellent retention and lacing.

Smells of oranges, faint grapes, pineapple and pine.

Taste...Getting a white wine vibe along with slight citrus acidity (not off-putting). Oranges and grapefruit in the background.

Soft, smooth mouthfeel. Low carbonation. Slight bitter aftertaste.

Overall, a really decent beer with an interesting taste.

Apr 23, 2021
Photo of BigMac59
BigMac59 from Texas

4.19/5  rDev -5.8%
look: 4.25 | smell: 4 | taste: 4.25 | feel: 4.25 | overall: 4.25

It pours a golden straw color with a nice sized head.
There are aromas of rye and tropical fruit.
I’m not usually a fan of Rye IPAs. But this one is very nice The hops work very well with the rye to give it a unique rye and tropical flavor.
It has a nice body and mouthfeel.
Leaves a nice aftertaste. The rye works well with the bitterness.


Overall, this is an excellent ipa highlighted by the rye and tropical flavors with just enough bitterness for a good punch.

Mar 04, 2021
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FrauBrewcher from California

4.57/5  rDev +2.7%
look: 4 | smell: 4.5 | taste: 4.5 | feel: 5 | overall: 4.75

Pours well out of a can, head looks good, foam clings to glass, etc. Very hazy with some larger particulates floating around.

White wine-like characteristics of the hop prominent in smell, along with some mango/tropical fruit.

The most prominent flavor is ripe mango both in flavor profile and sweetness. Not getting much else but mango is awesome so that's a plus.

Robust feel but still dangerously smooth and easy to put down, even at 7%.

Would buy on sight, wife--approved and she hates IPAs.

Feb 24, 2021
Photo of feloniousmonk
feloniousmonk from Minnesota

4.09/5  rDev -8.1%
look: 4 | smell: 4.25 | taste: 4 | feel: 4.25 | overall: 4

11/27/15:
Lightly hazy, bright golden appearance, with a large, voluminous, gorgeous cloud-white head, leaving lace and looking beautiful.

Incredibly fresh and vibrant aromatics, but not with the usual pine and citrus notes we expect in an IPA. Rye malt comes across, subtly, and some white grape notes, some white wine character, and just a whiff of the ol' cat pee, the common traits of the Nelson Sauvin. Tropical fruit essence rolls up. Intriguing stuff.

In the mouth, it's all the hoppy goodness. Rye spiciness creeps up just a little, but the hops are tops here. Bold bitterness, with fruity notes abounding. Amazing beer. So full of flavor, big on the hops, and a delight to drink. Just about perfect. Mmmm.

Great beer, go drink it.

Feb 04, 2021
Photo of defunksta
defunksta from North Dakota

4.48/5  rDev +0.7%
look: 4.5 | smell: 4.5 | taste: 4.5 | feel: 4.25 | overall: 4.5

Appearance: Pours a completely hazy (100%), pale yellow color with a large, white head. SRM of 6. One of the haziest and most opaque beers I have seen. (4.50)

Aroma: Absolutely giant aromas of green banana, pineapple, citrus, and more tropical fruit. Totally green. Even some cinnamon spice. A bit of herbal qualities underneath. Extremely juicy and green. Huge green citrus and tropical banana.

Flavor: A giant bomb of biting green citrus, banana, pineapple, green mango, and tropical fruit altogether. Extremely green and juicy citrus with pine underneath. Finishes sweet and juicy. The green fruit is showcased here mostly in a citra format, however some gooseberry and grape underneath, but less than I expected.

Feel: Medium-bodied. Sweet and biting. Leaves a green juiciness on the palate that is palate-wrecking.

Compared to Lagunitas Stereohopsis Volume 1, 1/3/21: Pours a lighter and much hazier color. Stronger and juicier aromas. Much more fruity and hazier. The Nelson evolves into more of a green citrus rather than green orchard fruit. More citrus, less orchard-fruit. Overall, quite a similar flavor from the Nelson which is interesting. Finishes much juicier, sweeter, but possibly a lighter body.

Overall: What a giant and juicy IPA. Fantastic green citrus and gooseberry flavors. Even some slight cinnamon spice. You could brush your teeth with this beer. Palate cleansing and green. The Nelson doesn't provide the green grape/gooseberry/orchardfruit I was expecting and leans more citrus. Almost like the citra hop. Actually tastes quite similar to Toppling Goliath's PseudoSue. Would be worth a comparison to PseudoSue, Axe Man, or KIng Sue if I manage to pick this one up again. So dense, so juicy, and so good. (Final Rating: 4.48)

Jan 03, 2021
Photo of JamFuel
JamFuel from Sweden

4.28/5  rDev -3.8%
look: 4.25 | smell: 4.25 | taste: 4.25 | feel: 4.5 | overall: 4.25

Pours a hazy light orange with soft, fine head.

Smell is juicy with notes of grapes, white wine, goosep´berries and a hint of white pepper.

Taste is fruity and a bit juicy. Notes of grapes, white wine, gooseberries, citrus and floral and peppery hints. A little bit of malty sweetness and a solid bitterness round it out.

Mouthfeel is medium, sticky and well carbonated.

Overall, exactly the Nelson showcase I was expecting.

Dec 01, 2020
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CDBeerDisappear from Ohio

3.75/5  rDev -15.7%
look: 3.75 | smell: 3.75 | taste: 3.75 | feel: 3.75 | overall: 3.75

Hazy orange yellow with one finger head that dissipates to a foam puddle. plenty of lacing. I find the aroma and the flavor to be rather unexciting. Along with the resiny tobacco flavor it tastes like old hay. I suppose these hops, Nelson Sauvin, need some getting used to or maybe it's the rye malt. I am not familiar with either.

I see that my experience with this beer is way out of line with other people's experience so I may revisit this sometime in the future.
Revisit #1 - It is DEFINITELY better when you smoke some weed.
Revisit #2 - Third can from the sixer, getting better, edited the review.

Oct 18, 2020
Photo of Ozzylizard
Ozzylizard from Pennsylvania

3.85/5  rDev -13.5%
look: 3.75 | smell: 4.25 | taste: 4 | feel: 3 | overall: 3.5

$ 6.99 (Including discount and shipping)/12 oz can ($0.583/oz). From Craftshack, San Diego, CA. Received 8/31/20. Reviewed 9/7/20.
UNDATED. Stored at home at 42 degrees and served at 45 degrees in a hand washed and dried Jester King snifter.
Appearance – 3.75.
First pour – Pale straw (SRM 2), hazy.
Body – Straw (SRM 3), opaque. When held to direct light, the same.
Head – Large (Maximum five cm, aggressive center pour), off-white, high density with rocks, average retention, diminishing to a three to five mm crown, a thin complete layer, and several islands of foam remaining on the side of the glass as the head retracts.
Lacing – Really no bands, just random pieces hanging on the glass.
Aroma - 4.25 – Heavy on the pine and grapefruit, no malt, no yeast – smells very refreshing. Weakens to a fruity smell.
Flavor – 4 – Surprisingly weak with none of the pine and only hints of grapefruit, otherwise a bit fruity. Some rye spiciness. No yeast, no malt. No alcohol (7 % ABV, as marked on container) taste or aroma. No diacetyl or dimethylsulfide.
Palate – 3 – Thin, watery, soft carbonation.
Final impression and summation: 3.5 (Minus 0.25 points for undated container) Perhaps I was expecting too much.

Sep 07, 2020
Photo of highdesertdrinker
highdesertdrinker from Arizona

4.31/5  rDev -3.1%
look: 4 | smell: 4.25 | taste: 4.5 | feel: 4 | overall: 4.25

Pours a turbid, light gold with a little head. Smells a little spicy from the rye, I imagine with grapefruit and tropical fruits. Tastes similar; a nice backbone of spicy rye that complements rather than overpowers, tropical fruits, grapefruit and it’s somewhat bitter. Well balanced and easy to drink like alcohol juice. Canned on 7-20 and consumed on 8-23.
This is the closest of the old Alpine recipes and it’s a good beer and close facsimile of what once was but the old Nelson fresh from the tap was a “5” and the big bombers when fresh were close to it. Still a damn tasty beer and I’ll buy when reasonably fresh, cheers!

Aug 24, 2020
Photo of tone77
tone77 from Pennsylvania

4.31/5  rDev -3.1%
look: 4 | smell: 4.25 | taste: 4.5 | feel: 4 | overall: 4.25

Poured from a 12 oz. can. Has a hazy golden color with a 1 inch head. Smell is full of citrus, pine. Taste is excellent There is.grapefruit, pine, some malts, moderate to heavy bitterness. Feels full bodied in the mouth and overall give this beer a try!

Aug 09, 2020
Photo of cren1
cren1 from California

4.85/5  rDev +9%
look: 4.75 | smell: 4.75 | taste: 5 | feel: 4.75 | overall: 4.75

One of my personal favorites. Hazy, unfiltered look that pours a brilliant orange color. The beer is absolutely delicious - hop forward with strong tropical notes that brighten your day.

Jul 21, 2020
Photo of Ahypercube
Ahypercube from California

4.53/5  rDev +1.8%
look: 4.25 | smell: 4.25 | taste: 4.75 | feel: 4.5 | overall: 4.5

I've had this fresher before, as this can is just over 180 days old, just about at the end of its life. Looks like this poor beauty sat on the refrigerated shelf waiting for her prince charming to come along for a tad too long. I decided to take care of the old belle partly out of charity, and partly as tribute.

She pours with a thick golden orange body, opaque but translucent, like fresh pressed apple juice with a splash of mango puree. Thick white froth crowns her head with impressive retention, leaving thick bands of white lacing everywhere like array of mountains.

Aromas of yellow grapefruit and peach jump up at the nose followed by notes of passion fruit, pineapple and mango, an onslaught of tropical fruit permeated only by herbal needle of pine and a cloud of chamomile.

Any good hazy IPA gives impressions of a bubbly herbal fruit smoothie and this is no exception. Peach and mango notes do their best to hold up against sharply bitter and astringent pine with grapefruit and lemon rind to back it up, but they just can't quite hold up. I remember this having near-perfect balance when I had it fresh, and I will rate it as such.

The feel still has a nice creamy richness and a dry, albeit somewhat clingy finish.

Awesome beer. Way better when less than a month old. Cheers!

Jul 14, 2020
Photo of mntlover
mntlover from Tennessee

4.4/5  rDev -1.1%
look: 4.25 | smell: 4.25 | taste: 4.5 | feel: 4.25 | overall: 4.5

Pours a hazy pineapple color with a thumb sized head that laces well.

Aroma is nice citrus, orange, grapefruit, apricot hints of pine all backed by the light spiciness of the rye. The malt adds some light sweetness that blends well with the fruitiness and hops.

Taste is damn the nose turned up a touch, love rye goes great with hops, that touch of spicy zest just adds to the hops. Nice citrus bitterness, with light pine and rye just makes my tongue tingle with excitement. Nice IPA makes me love the style again after too many fruity ones.

Mouthfeel is medium carbonation is fairly mellow but peaks just as the hops resins are coating your tongue.

Overall I like it , love a good rye IPA would have this in my beer fridge regularly if it was available in my area.

Jul 09, 2020
Photo of Thomas_Wikman
Thomas_Wikman from Texas

4.74/5  rDev +6.5%
look: 4.25 | smell: 4.5 | taste: 5 | feel: 4.5 | overall: 4.75

It is unique and delicious, one of the best IPAs I've had.

Look: hazy golden with a thick white head.

Aroma: rye malts, citrus, orange, grapefruit

Taste: The flavor is sweet rye, citrus, lots of citrus, orange, tangerine and grapefruit, lingering grapefruit bitterness at the end. The rye goes very well with the citrus.

Body/Overall: medium to full body, it is juicy and soft with a thick consistency for an IPA.

Jun 04, 2020
Photo of captaincoffee
captaincoffee from Virginia

4.23/5  rDev -4.9%
look: 4.5 | smell: 4.5 | taste: 4 | feel: 4.25 | overall: 4.25

Pours a fairly brilliant sunshine light orange-y color that's somewhat hazy. Nose is very classic with orange rind and pine with just a little dankness. Not punching me in the face, but a really nice mix. Taste is similar, but maybe not as delicately balanced as the nose. Slightly floral as well, and unfortunately just a touch of dish soap in there. Great balanced mouthfeel and carbonation. Overall, a great beer that was probably better back in the day when it made its name. Still, for the price, I'd get this all the time if it was ever available fresh.

May 12, 2020
Photo of just1cho
just1cho from California

4.52/5  rDev +1.6%
look: 4.5 | smell: 4.25 | taste: 4.75 | feel: 4.25 | overall: 4.5

*Poured from a 12oz bottle into a Teku glass at 45F*

For me, balance is the key word for this beer.

Poured a hazy pale orange with a white colored half a finger thick head and solid retention. There were some yeast particles in the bottom of the bottle, which predictably contributed to its hazy appearance.

Upfront on the nose, I got a nice balance of earthy and citrus/tropical notes from the hops. There was a pleasantly syrupy-sweet hit of canned dole mandarin oranges, peaches, and apricots. This was balanced harmoniously with some dankness, earthy-grass clipping notes and pine from the hops.

The taste follows the nose, giving a nice balance once again between the herbal earthy tones and citrus/fruitiness of the hops. However, this is where more of the sweet malt characters shine through, developing a nice malty and caramel-like character in the middle. Towards the end, there was a bit of a lingering grapefruit bitterness--it's noticeable, but it wasn't overwhelming. Again, a nice balance!

The feel was also very satisfying--offering light carbonation contributing to a very smooth and mellow feel, making this super drinkable for me. For an IPA, this was also surprisingly medium to full bodied, almost sticky-like.

This is honestly the best IPA that I've ever had. Almost every IPA was either massively hopped to the point I couldn't taste the malt, or had very little hop character, making it unsatisfying, bland, and unimpressive. Nelson had a nice balance between the hops and the malt, making this a well rounded and delicious beer.

May 02, 2020
Photo of SHDoyle
SHDoyle from Ohio

4.03/5  rDev -9.4%
look: 4 | smell: 4 | taste: 4 | feel: 4.25 | overall: 4

Description: Hazy appearance with a light orange juice color. Noticeable white head and legs that linger in the glass. Smell is overall kind of light, but there are notes of tropical fruit, melon and floral aromas. The taste is similarly mild with light floral, melon and tropical notes. Most prominent in the flavor is the bitter, grapefruit aftertaste that kind of overwhelms the palate. Feel is smooth and medium to heavy bodied with a low amount of carbonation.

Overall: 4 (This beer is good and I may or may not drink it again) A good, solid beer with on-point craftsmanship, but overall not a standout for me. The flavors were delicate and the aftertaste kind of drowned out and hid that unfortunately.

Apr 30, 2020
Photo of paltemose2303
paltemose2303

4.52/5  rDev +1.6%
look: 4.75 | smell: 4 | taste: 4.75 | feel: 4.75 | overall: 4.5

I've only had a few Rye IPAs, but this was easily the most approachable of them all. Great hazy golden color with a modest off-white head. Really picked up the rye in the smell, but it wasn't very strong. Rye really came through early with the nelson hops bringing some fruity bitterness on the finish. Tasted clean and balanced. I loved this beer and look forward to drinking the rest!

Apr 09, 2020
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H-TownMcBuck from Texas

4.21/5  rDev -5.4%
look: 4.25 | smell: 3.75 | taste: 4.5 | feel: 4 | overall: 4.25

Wonderful, hazy, light orange to gold color. Nose was a bit on the light side, slightly floral. Incredible flavor! Hoppy towards sweet clementines. Definitely recommend and will have another.

Mar 25, 2020
Photo of Hooded
Hooded from Texas

4.7/5  rDev +5.6%
look: 4.5 | smell: 4.5 | taste: 4.75 | feel: 5 | overall: 4.75

Notes from 3/6/2020.
Poured from a 12oz can into a Spiegelau IPA glass.
The body is a hazy yellow with 4 fingers of pillowy white foam. 2 fingers of head remain after slowly receding. There's a large amount of moderately thick lacing. 4.5
The aroma is medium in strength and of ripe mango, sweet pineapple, a little peach, and orange juice. 4.5
The taste is medium-high in strength and of ripe mango, pineapple, peach, and has a moderately bitter hoppy finish. 4.75
The mouth feel is above medium, juicy, extremely creamy, silky, and has low carbonation. 5.00
Overall, this IPA is such a high quality beer and so remarkably well balanced that it's crazy. The quality is consistent each time I have had it on tap or in cans. There's no hype with this one folks. 4.75

Mar 13, 2020
Photo of timon
timon from California

4.4/5  rDev -1.1%
look: 4.25 | smell: 4.25 | taste: 4.5 | feel: 4.75 | overall: 4.25

I bought this today on my day off and thought: PLEASE LET IT TASTE LIKE THE ORANGE CAN LOOKS. It does. Tastes like orange/tangerine/grapefruit with a hint of dark bready malt. Super refreshing on a hot day. Smells like OJ and flowers, light but pretty. Looks like straight juice in a glass. So good. If you told anybody it was vodka and OJ/grapefruit juice mixed at 7% alcohol, they really might believe you! (assuming they don't understand lacing because it does have nice lacing).

Mar 04, 2020
Nelson from Alpine Beer Company
Beer rating: 98 out of 100 with 4331 ratings