Tuatara
Alpine Beer Company

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Style:
Pale Ale - American
Ranked #193
ABV:
4.2%
Score:
90
Ranked #6,365
Avg:
4.11 | pDev: 9.25%
Reviews:
31
Ratings:
72
From:
Alpine Beer Company
 
California, United States
Avail:
Rotating/Seasonal
Wants
  2
Gots
  3
SCORE
90
Outstanding
Notes:
Reviews: 31 | Ratings: 72 | Log in to view all ratings and sort
Reviews by tbone1384:
Photo of tbone1384
tbone1384 from Wyoming

3.75/5  rDev -8.8%
look: 3.75 | smell: 3.75 | taste: 3.75 | feel: 3.75 | overall: 3.75

Apr 14, 2018
More User Reviews:
Photo of MiScusi
MiScusi from California

4.5/5  rDev +9.5%
look: 4.5 | smell: 4.5 | taste: 4.5 | feel: 4.5 | overall: 4.5

On tap at O'Brien's today. Crystal clear gold to light caramel color. Smell has a combination of earthy/spicy and fruity/tropical hops. The taste is zesty. Finishes with a bit that is quite reminiscent of many of sierra nevada's hoppy beers (a really distinct flavor I get solely from SN), but not with as much of the caramel aspect. Nice hoppy flavor to it. Mouthfeel is light yet pretty smooth. At 4.2% this beer is very nice for multiple rounds when you are in the mood for hops.

Aug 03, 2010
Photo of mithrascruor
mithrascruor from California

4.17/5  rDev +1.5%
look: 4 | smell: 4.5 | taste: 4 | feel: 4.5 | overall: 4

On tap at O'Brien's, San Diego.

Pours a light copper color with a bit of light white lacing. Light but pleasant aroma of hops, some grains, and a bit of apricot. Similar flavor, with some bitterness building up towards & into the finish. Light bodied and generally smooth, with mild carbonation. A pleasant session ale, though I thought it was a tad too bitter.

Aug 01, 2011
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magictrokini from California

3.43/5  rDev -16.5%
look: 3.5 | smell: 3 | taste: 3.5 | feel: 3 | overall: 4

Tap @ O'Briens. Poured clear gold with a bubbly white head. Bitter, metallic hop nose with a bit of funky malt. Strange. Expected mouthfeel for an APA. Grainy malt with an earthy overtone. Very hoppy for an APA, but more bitter and peppery spice than the citrus that Alpine usually cranks out. Very refreshing. I think it was more me and what I expected than the beer.

Nov 20, 2009
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bennetj17 from Arizona

4.5/5  rDev +9.5%

Aug 31, 2012
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ArrogantB from Colorado

4/5  rDev -2.7%
look: 4 | smell: 4 | taste: 4 | feel: 4 | overall: 4

On tap at Toronado. I passed this up at O'Brien's and Alpine so I made sure I ticked it before I left San Diego. Nice yellow-orange, white head, huge lace. Smells quite hoppy but all fruits. The flavor is also very fruity hops, not much bitterness if at all and a strange malt background that I could not lay a finger on. Went down very quickly and while it is very hoppy it does not measure up to Alpine's IPA's. Solid beer.

Sep 18, 2012
Photo of seaoflament
seaoflament from California

4.38/5  rDev +6.6%
look: 4.5 | smell: 4 | taste: 4.5 | feel: 4.5 | overall: 4.5

Had a pint of this at O'Brien's Pub on Nov. 10 while I waited for the Kopi Luwak Speedway to get tapped. This new hoppy Alpine beer was made with some New Zealand Moteuka hops (a cross breed with Saazer, giving it a noble hop characteristic and also known as "B Saaz") and Pacific Jade (a cross of New Zealand "First Choice" and "Old Line" Saazer Male hops).

Tuatara presented a great clarity with a light caramel color, a combination of light brown and light orange hues. A half inch of foam settled to a thin layer after a few moments, leaving some lacing behind.

Very tropical on the nose, must come from the Pacific Jade, with grapefruit, mango, orange, floral and lemony aromas that are reminiscent of Amarillo but with a slightly herbal and spicy twist. Hints of light toast and light caramel malts in the back.

Yum! These guys know how to make tasty and refreshing hoppy beers. Clean bitterness with creamy carbonation and a medium dryness in the finish. Balancing toast, biscuit and light caramel malts. Floral hops, citrus rind, bitter orange, and a bit of young nectarine.

Very smooth, creamy carbonation, and feels a tad light in the finish but suits well for the style and makes it very easy to drink. Could drink a growler of this.

Nov 26, 2009
Photo of srandycarter
srandycarter from California

4/5  rDev -2.7%
look: 4 | smell: 4 | taste: 4 | feel: 4 | overall: 4

A - Clear honey, nice near white head, slow to leave. Some cling remains.

S - Light malt, straw, NZ hops def in there.

T - Taste close to smell. Malt not overly sweet, and grassy. Clobbered by hops in finish. Clean overall.

M - Good carb and balance. Med to light body.

D - The very definition of session.

Oct 06, 2011
Photo of drewone
drewone from California

4/5  rDev -2.7%
look: 4 | smell: 4 | taste: 4 | feel: 4 | overall: 4

Sep 02, 2012
Photo of largadeer
largadeer from California

4.63/5  rDev +12.7%
look: 5 | smell: 4.5 | taste: 4.5 | feel: 4.5 | overall: 5

Growler from the ever-generous ArthurPendragon.

Poured from growler to nonic, two fingers of thick foam top a brilliantly clear golden body. Head retention is outstanding; a white cap lasts until the final gulp.

The nose is distinctly Alpine: loaded with herbal, floral, spicy dry hops. The hop aroma is unique, decidedly different from anything they've made with West Coast hops, more on the spicy, zesty side, but no less huge and aromatic.

The mouthfeel is surprisingly light and crisp, barely a trace of malt to be found. Zesty, herbal, slightly floral hops are supported by the lightest of crackery malt flavor. This one is dry from beginning to end, with very little bitterness coming through in the finish. It's incredibly delicate stuff, but so damn flavorful and refreshing. Drinkability is off the charts; I could session an entire growler of this over the course of a few hours. Another amazing beer from Alpine, I wish more breweries would make beers like this.

Oct 16, 2009
Photo of mikesgroove
mikesgroove from South Carolina

4.6/5  rDev +11.9%
look: 4.5 | smell: 4.5 | taste: 4.5 | feel: 4.5 | overall: 5

This was an exceptionally great beer I have to say. Big thanks to my man out west for keeping me up with all the Alpine releases. This one was killed by yours truly last night while listening to the phish fest on the TV.

The pour was killer, light golden pale amber with a huge head of white that came up and over the top. Rich notes of light citrus hops are dancing all over this one, really very complex and quite the nice beer I have to say. As I take the first sip the clean crisp nature of the flavor really sets it apart for me. Nice crisp lemon zest on the tongue, light notes of grain and a touch of fresh grassy and herbal like notes. Warming brings some sweet, buttery balance to it and leaves a nice dry finish with a long taste of light hops that stays with you throughout the session.

Overall this was soo damn drinkable that I killed the whole thing before I even knew what had hit me. I could have this one on tap at the house forever, it was just that damn good!

Oct 31, 2009
Photo of HopHead84
HopHead84 from California

4.05/5  rDev -1.5%
look: 4 | smell: 4 | taste: 4 | feel: 4.5 | overall: 4

8/1/2010

On tap at Stone. Appears vibrant yellowish orange with a pillow white head and good retention.

The aroma is reminiscent of grapefruit, orange, and pine, with accompanying floral, earthy, and minty notes. The malt profile is faint and grainy.

The flavor exhibits a lemony, orange pith, and herbal bitterness with some mint notes. Sweetness is ephemeral midpalate, quickly reverting to dry floral/herbal/lightly citric bitterness. Pine and a light astringency are apparent in the dry and bitter terminus.

The mouthfeel is dry and sticky and carbonation is high. A flavorful and quite sessionable hoppy pale ale for a warm summer day, though I much prefer Hoppy Birthday.

Aug 02, 2010
Photo of yourefragile
yourefragile from District of Columbia

4.12/5  rDev +0.2%
look: 4 | smell: 4.5 | taste: 4 | feel: 4 | overall: 4

Growler shared with a few friends. Thanks Rich for continuing to satisfy my unending need for all things Alpine.

Pours a nice golden apricot color with a massive, frothy white head and good lacing and retention. Fairly sweet, citrus NZ hop aroma with light tropical and sweet malt notes. Flavor starts initially sweet and juicy, with surprising amounts of citrus and tropical hops before finishing with stronger pine bitterness. Pleasant toasted malt body throughout, with a mild herbal and floral presence that becomes more potent in the finish. Light bodied, soft and creamy, with moderate carbonation. Very easy drinking and enjoyable, but lacking the excitement of Hoppy Birthday. Nothing wrong with that and would happily have this again.

Sep 06, 2011
Photo of MasterSki
MasterSki from Canada (ON)

4.13/5  rDev +0.5%
look: 4.5 | smell: 4 | taste: 4 | feel: 4 | overall: 4.5

Picked this up at Alpine - shared with friends.

A - Two fingers of soapy that dissipates slowly and leavings a solid cap with nice rings of lace. Transparent light golden body with a few stray bubbles.

S - Interesting hop aroma on this one - lots of peach and lemon, with touches of flowers and peppery spice. Not much malt character at all.

T - Taste is pretty similar to the smell, with more peach and less of the pepper flavor. Maybe a touch of cat pee. Again, negligible malt character, which is unsurprising for a 4.2% pale ale.

M - Thin, with light carbonation tingle, a touch of dryness and bitterness in the finish, but this is very clean.

D - A session pale ale that goes down easy. Nothing super special, but solid.

Oct 15, 2009
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t0rin0 from California

4.25/5  rDev +3.4%

Aug 18, 2012
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Bubba83 from California

4.43/5  rDev +7.8%
look: 4.5 | smell: 4 | taste: 4.5 | feel: 4 | overall: 5

Had this as a sample at the brewery during SD Beer Week.

Apperance was menacing. A light orange colored body with lots of super bright white head. Creamy looking head with insane lacing.

Smell is good, lots of lemony and grassy flavors, very fresh smelling, like being in a field. A bunch of bright but dry citrus is here too with an underlying biscuity smell and some spice and earth. Seems very New Zealand style.

They weren't kidding on their board. Lots of lemon/lime flavors come out in the taste, almost like drinking sprite, but not an odd kind of "is this beer?" feeling. It's definitely beer, but the hop flavor is very unique and refreshing. Lots of lemon and lime type flavors with some orange. Not too much grapefruit or anything bitter, just lots of brightness. There's a bunch of crackery/biscuity/grainy/cereal malt underneath but it's well hidden beneath the very spritzy/zesty hops.

The feel is very dry with a grainyness and good carbonation. Despite how abrasive you think it should be, there's a little bit of creaminess.

Drinkability is incredible. I could drink this all day every day for a year. Super dry and refreshing, almost like drinking a good ginger ale. Amazing flavors that make you contemplate what a hoppy beer is supposed to be and something so unique that you just can't get enough. Alpine, I know you're bottling a lot of your beers now, why not give this one a whirl and be completely surprised when it is your best seller?

Feb 21, 2010
Photo of GJ40
GJ40 from North Carolina

4.5/5  rDev +9.5%
look: 4.5 | smell: 4.5 | taste: 4.5 | feel: 4.5 | overall: 4.5

Sampled on tap at the Toronado in San Diego.

A light golden ale with great clarity and a creamy white head. The aroma is bursting with tropical fruit and citrusy hops. A touch of yeast comes through as well. The flavor follows with huge tropical fruit and citrus notes. The bitterness is low and there's a hint of toasted malt. The consistency is very creamy for a lower alcohol beer and it has a nice low carbonation.

This was quite a surprise. It's got all of the hop flavor of an IPA but is much more of a session beer. Alpine is quickly becoming one of my favorites.

Aug 18, 2010
Photo of MisterClean
MisterClean from California

4.03/5  rDev -1.9%
look: 4 | smell: 3.5 | taste: 4 | feel: 4.5 | overall: 4.5

On tap at Toronado SD.

A - Poured a strong yellow, with 2 fingers of white head. Dissipates slow and leaves little lacing.

S - Caramel and citrus.

T - Caramel, citrus, and bittering hops.

M - Moderate n body, hop dominated and smooth. Still slightly bitter from the hops, but good for the style.

D - A very good example of a pale ale. Definitely worth trying.

Oct 30, 2009
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popery from California

4.02/5  rDev -2.2%
look: 3.5 | smell: 4 | taste: 4 | feel: 4.5 | overall: 4

Thanks to largadeer. Growler. Very nice. It’s light and dry with lots of hops. I love these beers that are basically scaled down West Coast-style IPAs. Pours pale gold with a white head. Nose has plenty of hops and leans toward the citric and tropical flavors - grapefruit, tangerine, kiwi, pineapple, mango, mild pine and grass. Light on the palate with just a touch of pale malt flavor. Rather dry. Very pleasant mild bitter hop bite in the finish. A good beer for an afternoon of drinking.

Aug 14, 2011
Photo of HalfFull
HalfFull from California

3.93/5  rDev -4.4%
look: 4.5 | smell: 4 | taste: 3.5 | feel: 4 | overall: 4.5

Poured into a pint glass from a fresh growler. Pours a clear golden straw in color and sports a half inch of creamy off-white foam which offers strong retention, particularly for a growler pour. Moderate lacing follows all the way down the pint.

Pleasant hop nose of primarily citrus notes. Some lemon and tangerine with a touch of pine in the background, with a bit more orange and malt notes with warming, along with some resinous funk.

Flavor is light and smooth, matching its light ABV. Citric malts are light but pleasant and somewhat complex for the lightness of the brew. Offers a light body but is not too thin by any means, thanks in part to a nice hop and spice character on the finish which gives the beer more texture and fullness than one might expect from a low ABV brew. Carbonation also yields a creamy feel and an makes for an easy drinking brew.

Note: From notes written Aug. 2010

Mar 07, 2011
Photo of spycow
spycow from Illinois

3.75/5  rDev -8.8%

Jan 12, 2013
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OlieIPA from California

4.47/5  rDev +8.8%
look: 4 | smell: 4.5 | taste: 4.5 | feel: 4.5 | overall: 4.5

Poured from a growler into an Alpine pint glass at roughly 55 degrees Fahrenheit.

A: Pale gold body that supported a 1-finger head and mild lacing.

S: A sweet wheat character along with a very unique hop profile. The New Zealand hops, which I believe are used in the hop bill, create a very sharp pine-like aroma.

T: Mild sweetness with a decent amount of hop-kick. Unlike anything I've tried, but closely resembles either a hopped up Pale Ale or California Common.

M: Light and dry on the palate with robust amounts of carbonation.

D: Perfect for a warm afternoon, this beer was easy to drink and exhibited tons of flavor.

Overall: Alpine...how do you do it? A must try. Cheers!

Jul 31, 2010
Photo of nickd717
nickd717 from California

4.3/5  rDev +4.6%
look: 4 | smell: 4 | taste: 4.5 | feel: 4 | overall: 4.5

On tap at O'Brien's and again at Pizza Port Carlsbad during SD Beer Week. What an awesome pale ale.

Great clear golden color with a foamy white head and some lacing that fades to a ring.

Aroma was somewhat mild and a little odd the first time I had it, almost like the smell after a rain, along with some citrusy hops. Second time around this funkiness wasn't there and it was mostly just fresh hops. Smelled great that time.

Flavor is lots of fresh rough citrus hops, some grain, and a little pale malt. Tasty and very well-hopped.

Palate is medium light with hoppiness lingering. Pretty refreshing.

A nice session pale ale overall, great for the style. Drinkability high.

Nov 13, 2009
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brokensail from California

4.1/5  rDev -0.2%
look: 4 | smell: 4 | taste: 4 | feel: 4 | overall: 4.5

On-tap at Alpine

A: The beer pours a cloudy golden orange with a white head.

S: Starts off with nice grapefruit/citrus hops on the nose. Plenty of floral notes along with a mild bread note and a light wheat smell. There is plenty of pine hop character as well.

T: A moderate hop/pine bitterness to open up. Like with any hoppy Alpine beer, lots of citrus and pine hop flavors. There is just a light floral note and some light maltiness.

M: Medium in body and carbonation.

O: I've liked these lower alcohol, highly hopped beers from Alpine. A nicely done beer.

Jul 31, 2011
Photo of ehammond1
ehammond1

3.21/5  rDev -21.9%
look: 4.5 | smell: 3.5 | taste: 2.5 | feel: 4 | overall: 3.5

On Tap

Alpine Beer Company
Alpine, CA

Nearly clear golden orange with a small near-white head, eventually leaving spots and irregular lines of lace down the glass.

The aroma is better than the flavor, with good amounts of citrus and earthy hop character, with good amounts of bready, mildly sweet malts behind it.

The flavor isn't particularly appreciable, especially when you're aware of Alpine's pedigree of brewing world-class pale ales and IPAs. There's a distinct cardboard, almost woody, flavor that dominates the other stale bread notes. There's a touch of citrus but it's hidden.

Medium bodied with crisp, high carbonation.

An average beer from an extraordinary brewery.

Aug 27, 2012
Tuatara from Alpine Beer Company
Beer rating: 90 out of 100 with 72 ratings