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Nelson | Alpine Beer Company

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NelsonNelson
BEER INFO

Brewed by:
Alpine Beer Company
California, United States
alpinebeerco.com

Style: American IPA

Alcohol by volume (ABV): 7.00%

Availability: Rotating

Notes / Commercial Description:
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

Added by OStrungT on 08-11-2006

BEER STATS
Reviews:
821
Ratings:
4,031
Avg:
4.38
pDev:
8.68%
 
 
Wants:
1,368
Gots:
648
For Trade:
19
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Reviews: 821 | Ratings: 4,031
Photo of PerHops
4.62/5  rDev +5.5%
look: 4.5 | smell: 5 | taste: 4.5 | feel: 4.5 | overall: 4.5

A- Gorgeous light golden orange with a nice bright white head. A little bit soapy, but full bodied enough to stick all over the glass.

S- Now that's an IPA! Super fruity, a faint hint of pine, some herbacious goodness.

T- Pineapple, mango, orange, with a sweetness that asserts itself without overwhelming. Super hoppy, super fruity, clean semi dry finish. Outstanding.

M- No complaints here in the least. Just enough carbonation to hold up to the intensely fruity flavors.

O- Great IPA in every way imaginable. Really happy I got to try one of these a day removed from the brewery.

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

I'll preface this by saying Single IPAs really aren't my thing.

Picked up a 2-day-old bottle at the brewpub, brought it home and shared with some friends last week (~5 days after bottling). Last bottle of Nelson shared with me was a few weeks old. For those of you wondering, lemme assure you there's a HUGE difference in IPAs when they are super fresh.

Incredible aroma of fresh, juicy oranges emanates from my glass. Hops not far behind, but this is orange central. The citrus fruits carry over strongly into the taste and really help balance out the hoppiness. By far the best Single IPA I've tasted to date, and arguably the first one I've ever enjoyed enough to want more.

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Photo of hansgruber
4.08/5  rDev -6.8%
look: 4.5 | smell: 4 | taste: 4 | feel: 4.5 | overall: 4

Pours a nice hazy orange color with a one finger off-white head. Leaves a consistent cap of foam and nice lacing. Real nice looking beer overall.
The nose is full of citrusy hops and a touch of the rye used. Also getting some floral notes and an odd synthetic off flavor too.
Taste is full of floral, citrusy, and grapefruit flavors. The rye blends in nicely for some subtle spice notes. As in the nose there's a bit of an off flavor in there but it's minor. There's also a nice bitterness that lingers on the palate. The carbonation level is great as with any of the other Alpine beers I've drank.
Overall it's a solid easy to drink beer.

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Photo of jtingue
4.26/5  rDev -2.7%
look: 5 | smell: 4 | taste: 4 | feel: 5 | overall: 4.5

Poured into a tulip.

Appearance. Very hazy golden orange in color. Pours with 3 fingers of tight white head, which descends beautifully forming meringue like peaks and tons of thick lacing.

Smell. A split between tropical fruit and hearty rye bread aromas.

Taste. Starts out with the bite of a bitter, bready rye malt flavor. Lots of citrus hops follow, with tangerine being predominant. A garlic like flavor develops, and is accompanied by the bitterness of the hops, but not the citrus flavor. The finish is slightly herbal and sees the return of those citrus hops. Herbal bitterness lingers.

Mouthfeel. Medium to heavy body and tight carbonation give this one a very creamy mouthfeel. Reminds me more of a double IPA than a single.

This one is very interesting, and different than what I expect out of california IPAs. The addition of rye seems to make this a completely different beast. Not sure how I feel about the metallic flavor in the beginning.

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Photo of gkatsoris
4.65/5  rDev +6.2%
look: 5 | smell: 5 | taste: 4.5 | feel: 4.5 | overall: 4.5

A: Super murky! Honey in color. Big thick, foamy head. The head lasted forever.

S: Yellow Ocean Spray Grapefruit Juice. Unripened green grapes. Honey. Pineapple. Tangerine. Ginger.

T: Pretty malty considering the smell. Damn this is balanced. Grapefruit rind. Grassy.

M: Thick, fluffy and chewy. Yum!!!

O: This went down like butta. Crazy delicious!!!

Crazy props to aekoops for the gift!!!

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Photo of spicelab
4.68/5  rDev +6.8%
look: 5 | smell: 4.5 | taste: 4.5 | feel: 5 | overall: 5

Bomber with big thanks to BdubleEdubleRUN.

Mildly hazed light apricot with a very resilient white head and a vigorous bead. Eventually leaves a curtain of lace around the glass. Looks brilliant.

Smashed passionfruit, pulped grass, compost, kiwi fruit, white grapes, lime sherbet and apricot. Smells almost alive.

Similar flavours joined by a gentle and divine bitterness that doesn't intrude on the hop profile one iota.

Velevety mouthfeel, thanks to amazingly smooth carbonation and bitterness which, although moderate, is so unassuming you almost forget it's there.

Stunningly brewed IPA that demonstrates how making an outstanding beer is not about more, nor about less, but about zeroing in on that elusive 'just-rightness'.

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Photo of silentjay
4.03/5  rDev -8%
look: 4.5 | smell: 4 | taste: 4 | feel: 4 | overall: 4

hazy golden color with a nicely sized pure white head that sticks around a while and leaves tonnns of lacing.

grapefruit, tangy tropical fruit, mango, a bit of spice, light rye bread, crackers.

juicy hops. not terribly bitter, but tangy and a bit sour like unripe mango with some peppery spice and grapefruit. light rye bread is definitely noticeable balancing the nelson hops.

lighter side of medium bodied with a nice supple carbonation that finishes pretty crisp but with a slightly tangy and sweet aftertaste. pretty refreshing actually.

another good hoppy offering from Alpine. good, but it doesn't redefine the style for me.

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Photo of CaptCleveland
4/5  rDev -8.7%
look: 4 | smell: 4 | taste: 4 | feel: 4 | overall: 4

Shared 22oz bomber obtained in trade from Vanlingleipa.

Cloudy, pale yellow liquid poured into DFH snifter. One-finger white head, thick lacing.

Aroma of sweet hops, lemon, orange and spice/pepper.

Smooth hoppy bitterness, mild spicy rye notes, grapefruit. All very subtle compared to Alpine's usual hop marvels. The pepper/spice rye lingers on the lips and tongue. Nice touch.

Medium body, well carbonated. Rye provides a bit more body.

This is a quality brew, for sure, but for the effort, I will take the more hop forward offerings from Alpine.

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Photo of kawilliams81
4/5  rDev -8.7%
look: 4 | smell: 4 | taste: 4 | feel: 4 | overall: 4

Served in a Stone Ruination IPA pint.

A- Pours a cloudy gold with a 2 finger bright white head. Excellent lacing remains on the glass.

S- Citrus, floral hops, and some spices as well.

T- Some citrus (orange mainly) and pine. Has some spicy notes with slight peppery taste.

M- Medium body with lighter carbonation. Very smooth and easy drinking.

O- Good IPA but not getting that vibrant citrus notes that I saw from a few other reviews. Never read reviews before I do my own, but was told that this beer could be off so wanted to see what I should expect.

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Photo of arizcards
4.59/5  rDev +4.8%
look: 4 | smell: 5 | taste: 4.5 | feel: 4.5 | overall: 4.5

Da Boss and I stopped at the Alpine Brewpub earlier today on the way to Torrey Pines area. A pint went for $5.50

Beer poured a clear golden with a decent head that is leaving lacing behind.

Nose is fragrant floral hops that are very fresh and is a big part of the beer.

Taste is very good, grapefruit is predominate with mango and tangerine. Pale malts take a back seat in the balancing act. Finish is very clean.

Mouthfeel is smooth and nicely carbonated.

Overall drinkability is very good. This is a very flavorful and clean finishing ipa. It has a wonderful array of flavors and the hop bitterness is definitely there but not overpowering. I would recommend you try this if you can get your hands on a bottle!

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Photo of SoCalStout
4.45/5  rDev +1.6%
look: 4.5 | smell: 4.5 | taste: 4.5 | feel: 4 | overall: 4.5

Growler poured into my delirium tulip glass. 2/14/2012

Appearance: Cloudy golden yellow/orange color with a fingers width of head retention. Good sticky lacing on the glass.

Smell: The aromas are ultra crisp, clean and delicious. As soon as I opened the growler you could smell this one.Tons of grapefruit, citrus, and slight hint of rye, but really the grapefruit aromas dominate this one.

Taste: Very juicy hop flavors, citrus (grapefruit) and pine dominate. Lots of fresh wet hop resinous flavors. Lots of fruit, tangerine, little orange and definitely grapefruit. A hint of sweet hop flavor. A touch of a spicy addition coming from the rye and hops. The funky/musty wet hop is different but fantastic. Very slight sweetness coming from the malts.

Mouthfeel: Nice light-medium feel that goes just over medium as it warms. Medium-high carbonation level that slowly fades as it sits a bit.

Overall: Another fantastic IPA coming from Alpine. Definitely in my category of go to beers. The rye adds a nice spicyness and the Nelson hops add a citrus/lemony bite. Very crisp and refreshing and recommended to all.

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Photo of Auracom
4.6/5  rDev +5%
look: 2.5 | smell: 5 | taste: 4.5 | feel: 4.5 | overall: 5

Big thanks to John (pmarlowe) for sending this one a couple of thousand miles to me.

A - This is a homely old brew. Bizarre, dirty, murky golden coloring. Great looking head though - very much the same as Exponential Hoppiness. White and fluffy with solid retention and lacing.

S - Such a unique nose. Herbs, grass, rye, peppercorn, and other spices combine with a lightly fruity, juicy white wine hop profile.

T - Intriguing balance across light hop notes, more rye, soft bread, butter, white grapeskins, melon, more herbs, and honey-coated malts.

M - Medium-high carbonation. Somewhat creamy. Light-medium body. Dry finish.

D - Wonderfully creative. The balance the rye imparts with the distinct New Zealand hops makes this an easy standout for me. Reflecting on this brew a bit further, I realize that this is a pinnacle of differentiation in a style chock-full of generalized aromas and flavors. I've been drinking a ton of APA/IPA/DIPA's lately, and nothing has stood out as much as this one.

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Photo of ghostwalker
4.07/5  rDev -7.1%
look: 4 | smell: 4.5 | taste: 4 | feel: 3.5 | overall: 4

Hazy golden body with a huge froth monster of a head. Almost looks like a hefe.

Nose is spicy-sharp citrus. There's an almost vegetal spiciness contribution from the rye. Love it!

Flavor is a study in contrasts. Smooth up front, sharp on the finish. Light on the palate, but with solid rye and hops all over. Not quite as hoppy as I expected, but really a tasty brew.

Mouthfeel is light and highly carbonated. For impact on the palate, this drinks more like a blonde than an IPA.

Hard to believe this is 7.1% It's almost quaffable. Really a good brew.

My first from Alpine. Duet is in the fridge and Exponential Hoppiness is on the way! Thanks to nogidrew63 for the trade on this one.

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Photo of dogfishandi
4.55/5  rDev +3.9%
look: 4.5 | smell: 4.5 | taste: 4.5 | feel: 5 | overall: 4.5

big thanks to LaChupacabra for sending me a box full of Alpine!

22oz bottle at fridge temp poured into a darkness snifter. no freshness info.

pours out a hazy, cloudy golden color, a little orange in there with a very nice looking pure white head with some big, solid bubbles that stick around. some good retention and lots of sticky lace clings to the glass. just a bit of sediment noticable. looks ideal.

holy aroma! packs a powerful dankness with lots of tropical fruits, oranges, and nectarines. vegetal, but in a good way, fresh pine as well.

am i nawing on a handful of fresh hop cones? lots of tropical fruits as well as fresh nectarines, peaches, and oranges. some spiciness most likely from the hops and rye. the dank vegetalness seems a lot more subdued in the taste when compared to the aroma. a bit of a white wine, berry like flavor, but its definatly not as noticable as some proclaim.

such a smooth feeling beer, the bitterness really isnt overpowering at all, almost has a creamy feel to it. minimal carbonation as well which i think actually compliments the beer.

this is really one hell of an IPA. very unique and an absolute must try for any hop head. insanely strong hop flavors with a very approachable bitterness. i hate to say this, but i think id even take this over pliny. i really cant wait to get into the rest of these alpine IPAs. the beer is gone, but my burps still taste like awesome nelson hops!

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Photo of SkiBum22
4.4/5  rDev +0.5%
look: 4.5 | smell: 4.5 | taste: 4.5 | feel: 4.5 | overall: 4

A - Pours almost a golden orange. Slight haze to it. Thin white head.

S - Juicy, citrus hop bitterness, hints of pineapple and grapefruit rind. There is some spice from the rye as well.

T - Tropical fruits upfront with a hint of spice, rye and bready malts follow. Very unique flavors here, unlike any other IPA I've tasted to date.

M - Not quite a medium body. Lower carbonation.

O - This is the most unique IPA I've ever had. Really like the white wine characteristics from the Nelson Sauvin hops. Another solid IPA from ABC.

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Photo of tobelerone
4.42/5  rDev +0.9%
look: 4 | smell: 4.5 | taste: 4.5 | feel: 4 | overall: 4.5

App: Dark orange-gold and hazy, with a smallish, quickly settling head and lots of sticky lace clinging to the glass.

Smell: Big, fresh aroma of grapefruit and grass with a subtle, spicy rye note underneath.

Taste: Follows the nose, vivid citrus hoppiness, fresh-cut grass and pine, the rye is buried in there, just peaking its head out in the finish. Booze is nowhere to be found. Subdued bitterness underneath it all carries into the aftertaste a bit. Modest sweetness with a very reserved underlying malt character.

Mf: Medium body with moderate carbonation, crisp and clean, yet smooth and just a wee bit creamy. Long finish is spicy and bitter.

Overall: A truly phenomenal beer. Preferred it slightly on tap, with its lower carbonation and fuller mouthfeel, but you can’t lose with this one. As good as anything made in this style without a doubt. Had a hard time not guzzling this one down like a racehorse.

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Photo of jegross2
4.14/5  rDev -5.5%
look: 3.5 | smell: 4.5 | taste: 4 | feel: 4.5 | overall: 4

Reviewing Nelson from the Alpine Beer Company.
Score: 93

Unknown vintage bottle received as part of a trade in early January 2012. Served in a Surly Darkness snifter and enjoyed on 01/31/12.

Appearance: Pours a hazy, translucent yellow-orange color with some cloudy and flaky sediment floating around. I was concerned that I was inadvertently using a dirty glass, but my roommate's freshly cleaned Duvel contained the same cloudy and flaky sediment. The sediment is really off-putting, but obviously it's the aroma, taste and mouthfeel that matter most in a beer. I think it's the floating "flakes" that is bothering me. This beer makes Heady Topper seem "clean" in appearance by comparison. Pours a full finger of slightly off-white sea foam head that slowly settles into a thin layer across the top of the glass. Excellent lacing with sticky sheets of head that cling to the side of the glass. 3.5/5

Smell: Loaded with vivid and fresh tropical citrus and floral aromas that leave me to believe this one uses Citra hops. Reminds me a lot of Zombie Dust. Bright grapefruit, orange juice, mango, pineapple juice and lemon rind. Some Mellow doses of pine and fresh grass clippings with a light maltiness in the background. 4.5/5

Taste: Sweet, slightly earthy citrus, bready malts and subtle amounts of rye/spice. The citrus is more pronounced upfront, while the finish is more malty than citrusy. Not very bitter. Very refreshing and drinkable. There is a light "white wine" grapiness throughout. 4/5

Mouthfeel: Medium bodied, medium, maybe medium-plus, carbonation. Carbonation level is perfect for the flavors. Creamy mouthfeel. Slightly dry, malty/acidic finish 4.5/5

Overall: This beer might be towards the end of its freshness life, as I received it roughly a month ago, but it is still extremely delicious. I would love to see how this one tastes right off the bottling line. This is an excellent single IPA that I wish I had easy/ready/consistent access too.

Recommendation: Fans of Zombie Dusty, Heady Topper, Lagunitas Sucks, Anti-Hero IPA and Surly Abrasive Ale should seek this beer out.

Pairings: Sherbet ice cream or hamburgers.

Cost: $7.99 for a 22 oz (bomber) bottle.

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Photo of Popp24
4.92/5  rDev +12.3%
look: 4.5 | smell: 5 | taste: 5 | feel: 4.5 | overall: 5

Tried this on tap at the brewery 2 days ago and now enjoying it from a 22 oz. bomber.

A - Dark golden to light amber with a fluffy white one finger head. Tiny bubbles throughout.

S - It smells great. Very fresh hop smells and some sweet citrus smells as well.

T - Hops are very nice and flavorful but not overpowering at all. Nice fresh grass taste with a grapefruit aftertaste.

M - Very nice and smooth and creamy and light.

O - Great IPA with alot of complexity to it. Very easy to drink and super tasty. This beer makes me wish I lived closer to Alpine.

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Photo of CliffBrake
4.75/5  rDev +8.4%
look: 4.5 | smell: 4.5 | taste: 5 | feel: 5 | overall: 4.5

Thanks to breaks808 for the bottle. Cheers!

Light orange color with light haze. Awesome rocky white head, long-lasting and leaving a dense curtain of lace.

Grapefruit aroma nicely balanced and supported by bready malts and a bit of a rustic, spicy character that must be due to the rye.

Citrus and tropical hops - papaya and orange, grapefruit - all blend beautifully and with the smooth mouthfeel contribute to a very juicy character. Bready malts add some body to the mix but the emphasis is on the fruity hop characters. Spicy, lightly bitter finish.

Big flavors but well balanced and light on its feet. Nelson proves that a big American IPA doesn't have to be clunky. A pretty beer through and through.

Highly recommended.

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Photo of onefalsemove711
4.74/5  rDev +8.2%
look: 4 | smell: 5 | taste: 5 | feel: 4 | overall: 4.5

Poured from a bomber into an imperial pint glass.

This beer is quite a specimen. Good 1/2 inch head with nice lacing. Right from the pour the smell of grapefruit and tropical fruit wafts through the air. I can already tell this one is going to be good. Tropical fruits, grapefruit, orange peel, spicy hops and caramel. Wow! Nicely carbonated, slightly viscous, but nevertheless smooth and really easy drinking.

A fantastic beer that I have a hard time passing up whenever I happen to see it on the shelves. Fortunately, that's quite a bit! Delicious and highly recommended!

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Photo of bashiba
4.51/5  rDev +3%
look: 3.5 | smell: 5 | taste: 4.5 | feel: 4 | overall: 4.5

Poured a dirty yellow/orange with lots of sedimant, a light thin head.

The smell is very Nelson, pungent and fruity at the same time, almost a touch sour.

The flavor is hops driven, the nelson qualities shine with the murkey and pungent old cheese flavors mixing in with the fresh tropical fruit notes. The light rye breadiness comes through nicely in the finish.

The mouthfeel is lightly resiny with a long dry finish.

Very nice, great use of a great hops.

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Photo of Blakaeris
3.7/5  rDev -15.5%
look: 3.5 | smell: 3.5 | taste: 4 | feel: 3.5 | overall: 3.5

Pours hazy pale golden with a thick soapy head.

Aroma is tropical citrus hop with a hint of pale malt.

Taste is toasted malt with more of the tropical hop quality - pineapple, orange, and melon. Finishes very smoothwith residual sweetness and only a slight bitterness.

Mouthfeel is light bodied.

Overall, a pleasant easy drinking IPA. Lighter and sweeter than expected. Very clean.

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Photo of OTB
5/5  rDev +14.2%
look: 5 | smell: 5 | taste: 5 | feel: 5 | overall: 5

Picked up a couple cases of various IPA 's at Alpine on Friday including a bunch of Nelson. This beer is a golden with a beautiful dense one inch cap that has amazing retention and leaves behind serious lacing as I sip down. The nose, like all Alpine brews is a work of art. Sweet tropical fruit, Nelson Sauvign hops and malty biscuit round out the package. The flavor profile follows the nose down the road, gorgeous rye, pine, sweet dank hoppiness all balanced by a minimal malt backbone. I cannot say enough about the uniqueness of this work of art, it is simply one of the best IPA's I have ever had, and Alpine may be the little giant that continues to craft ultra uber cult status beers according to their own rules.

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Photo of Philousa
4.24/5  rDev -3.2%
look: 3.5 | smell: 4.5 | taste: 4.5 | feel: 2.5 | overall: 4.5

Pours a pale yellow gold with a thin white head. Lacing left on the glass looks like layers of sediment or rock in a cross section. Thin yeast residue left at the bottom of the bottle. Piney, woodsy, earthy hops aroma, as well as citrus and floral aromas. A little twinge of tart light bread also, like it's baking in the oven (read: yeast). Taste starts out very piney, like some spruce tips were used in the making of this beer. Very mild malt, but rye is there and unmistakable, which makes it tart and acidic. Bitterness comes in like the tide taking over your taste buds without you noticing. Tangy yeast comes out with time. A bit acidic in feel, but easily drinkable. dry finish.

I've been waiting for months to try an Alpine Brewing IPA, and I am not disappointed. I was worried when I saw that the only one left on the shelf was a Rye IPA, but Alpine really balanced the rye flavors well. A bit tangy due to the rye and hop oil, it was surprisingly smooth. I drank the bomber by myself and only noticed the acidity halfway through. It was never a problem though, more of an enduring characteristic. I would love to try this on tap!

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Photo of Humulus85
4.87/5  rDev +11.2%
look: 4.5 | smell: 5 | taste: 5 | feel: 5 | overall: 4.5

Thanks to tjkinate for this one, I always love me a Rye IPA, and I always love me some Alpine. Served from a 22oz bomber into my Darkness snifter.

Pours a slightly hazy honey gold. One finger of dense white foam has great retention and left behind some super sticky lacing. Hoping it tastes as good as it looks!

Smell is just wonderful. Pine, grapefruits, and rye, in that order. Been drinking a lot of Citra bombs lately so this is a nice change up.

And I just died and went to IPA heaven. This hits all the right notes for me. Earthy, piney, hop notes blend with fruity, citrusy hop notes. This is all backed up that wonderfully distinct biscuity rye flavor. It reminds me of a less malty Surly Furious. Everything is so damn clean and balanced.

Again, I can't find anything bad to say. Super smooth, nice and crisp without being too dry. Leaves a minimal aftertaste. Light in body but not in flavor, and some perfect carbonation.

Overall this is easily one of the top 5 IPAs I've ever had (and I've had many), and now one of my personal favorite beers in general. If I had to choose only one beer to drink for the rest of my life, Alpine Nelson would be seriously considered. There is just simply not much negative to say about this beer (except I can't easily get it). I love the delicate, yet complex hop profile, that plays so beautifully with the Rye addition. Recommended to all, every BA should try this beer. Cheers!

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Nelson from Alpine Beer Company
4.38 out of 5 based on 4,031 ratings.
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