Thumbprint Apple Ale
New Glarus Brewing Company

Thumbprint Apple AleThumbprint Apple Ale
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Fruit and Field Beer
Ranked #7
Ranked #2,602
4.15 | pDev: 10.12%
New Glarus Brewing Company
Wisconsin, United States
Thumbprint Apple AleThumbprint Apple Ale
Notes: Apple Ale sings with the fresh crisp taste of Wisconsin apples. Our Brewmaster begins with a brown ale base employing Wisconsin farmed barley and a blend of apple varieties grown in Door County. Our apple growing friends squeeze them especially for this brew. Expect this ale to pour a beautiful copper color. The fresh bouquet of apple will rise to meet you even before the glass touches your lips. So be sure to sip slowly and enjoy the fruits of a Wisconsin harvest.
Reviews: 465 | Ratings: 1,668 | Log in to view all ratings and sort
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MonDak_Joe1953 from Minnesota

4.24/5  rDev +2.2%
look: 4 | smell: 3.75 | taste: 4.5 | feel: 4.5 | overall: 4.25

12oz bottle. Etched identification marking on bottle is '020231134773B'.
Clear, amber colored body. Massive surge of rising bubbles keep feeding the off white small bubble head. Leaves behind scattered strands of lacing on drinking side.
Aroma is subdued, with malt and apples.
Taste is very expressive with the apple flavor, sweet and crisp. Has a malt backbone.
Thicker than medium mouth feel, almost like creamy apple butter. Excellent carbonation.
It is difficult not to drink this down in one swig. Unknown ABV% but there is no alcohol detected. Just the essential fall essence of crisp apple sitting on top of the brown ale base.

Dec 28, 2020
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SHODriver from North Carolina

4.25/5  rDev +2.4%
look: 4.25 | smell: 4.25 | taste: 4.25 | feel: 4.25 | overall: 4.25

A: Poured into a tulip glass to a deep gold that is almost brown topped by a dense finger of cream colored head which fades slowly to a collar around the edge of the glass
S: Smells like straight apple juice in the best possible way along with a hint of caramel
T: Taste is crisp and sweet apples with a little caramel. Slight bitter apple skin as well. Swallow is more sweet apple notes with some lingering caramel.
M: This beer is fairly light in body but it is not watery. Carbonation is fairly effervescent but it stays just below prickly while the beer has a semidry finish
O: Overall this is a delicious beer that is probably flirting with cider territory from the flavor department. Definitely good and worth a try. Not the most complexity in the world but definitely an enjoyable drink.

Jul 18, 2018
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Sabtos from Ohio

4.03/5  rDev -2.9%
look: 3.75 | smell: 3.75 | taste: 4.25 | feel: 4 | overall: 4

Barely sparkling copper exhibiting complete clarity with a mild white foam head settling to a soft fuzzy collar leaving an arm of lace or two.

Smell is a mild mix of corn, toasted wheat and grass with a popping, bright, juicy and crisp apple that even has a bit of a honey note to it.

Taste is tangy, almost tart but mostly sweet juicy red apple with a bready, wheaty finish and some Corn Flakes.

Apple Ale has a crisp but soft froth, medium body and semi-wet finish.

Sep 24, 2017
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Blackop555 from Michigan

4.11/5  rDev -1%
look: 3.75 | smell: 4 | taste: 4.25 | feel: 4.25 | overall: 4

Pours Amber. Bubbly, short, Whitehead that Fades fast.

Smells apple juice, light tart apple and lemon hints.

Taste caramel malt, sweet and tart apple, cider, light earthiness. Finish is semi-sweet with an apple linger. Medium body and lightly fizzy medium carbonation

Aug 31, 2017
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bubbly03 from Missouri

4.14/5  rDev -0.2%
look: 4.75 | smell: 3.75 | taste: 4.25 | feel: 4.5 | overall: 4

Let's start off by clarifying that the Thumbprint Apple Ale from New Glarus is no Angry Orchard. No. From the bottle the smell is fresh apple juice. A swig… Surprise, delight, a slight bend of the knee. How apropos, because other apple ales bow to this one. Beautiful foamy head that dissipates after a few moments. What makes this apple ale stand apart is the flavor from the brown ale base. This is no cloyingly sweet sparkling apple cider; oh no. This is fall in a glass, and as you sip, you will feel the sensation of fall leaves swirling around you. You will tighten an imaginary scarf around your neck. Your eyes will glow the same shade as this beer: liquid amber, like the purest honey. ABV is undetectable – it goes down sweet and smooth alright. You will marvel at how you are drinking gently bubbling liquid honey. Don't be afraid – take a bite of the apple. New Glarus Thumbprint Apple Ale is here for you.

Jun 19, 2017
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Bdubz94 from Wisconsin

4.38/5  rDev +5.5%
look: 4.25 | smell: 4.25 | taste: 4.5 | feel: 4.5 | overall: 4.25

Poured from a 12oz bottle into a snifter.

A clear dark amber color with a finger head that quickly recedes leaving decent lacing.

Aroma is straight up apple juice.

Tastes like apple cider. Very sweet, very refreshing, very juicy.

Mouthfeel is light and well carbonated.

Overall, a delicious beverage. Very refreshing. A great fruity beer. My only complaint is the lack of complexity in aroma and taste. Yeah you taste apples but not much else. Would have enjoyed some other flavors blended in as well. However, I prefer this beer to any of the hard apples ciders I have tried.

May 08, 2017
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beerguy04 from Illinois

4.56/5  rDev +9.9%
look: 4.5 | smell: 4.75 | taste: 4.5 | feel: 4.5 | overall: 4.5

Pours an amber color with a white head that goes away quickly. Smell and taste reminds me of apple cobbler. Mild tart aftertaste. Mouthfeel is medium and refreshing. Overall a really good beer for people new to craft, or fruit beers.

Apr 27, 2017
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gregy55902 from Minnesota

3.75/5  rDev -9.6%
look: 3.75 | smell: 3.75 | taste: 3.75 | feel: 3.75 | overall: 3.75

It was decent, but it is too close to the formula of BMC "ciders" so it is suspect in some aspects. Follows a simple, safe mild apple flavor + sweetness formula that everyone else is already doing with their mass-produced ciders (I know this is "apple beer" but yeah). Nothing too exciting here other than some very faint spices with a nice buttery/cracker-y malt backbone, but I am glad to have tried it. Would have been more exciting with some tartness, but there was none to be found. Still good overall. I'm a bit more excited for the Raspberry Tart bottle, which will be opened when the time is right.

Feb 20, 2017
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spacecake9 from Illinois

4/5  rDev -3.6%
look: 4 | smell: 4 | taste: 4 | feel: 4 | overall: 4

A - Pours a clear golden amber color with a 1/4" head.
S - The aroma is definitely apples.
T - Very nice apple flavored beer. A little tart but not overly so.
M - Fairly light mouth feel, average carbonation.
O - This is a very simple brew without complex flavors, just straightforward apple. I would not drink it all the time, but it is very enjoyable. And different.

Feb 16, 2017
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PDGreenB from Kentucky

4.17/5  rDev +0.5%
look: 4.25 | smell: 4 | taste: 4.25 | feel: 4 | overall: 4.25

What an excellent fruit ale. I'll admit I'm a sucker for New Glarus, but this drink is impeccable. Poured from glass into a pint glass at Sugar River Pizza in New Glarus, WI. Comes out amber and copper in color, reminiscent of an apple cider. The taste is crisp and sweet, but not overwhelming. The head is small, but healthy for a typical fruit-flavored ale. This drink is great for colder weather, and decidedly a favorite in my book.

Jan 02, 2017
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Rimbimhoot from Illinois

3.94/5  rDev -5.1%
look: 4 | smell: 3.75 | taste: 4 | feel: 4 | overall: 4

A: Clear, light amber
S: Sweet and tart red apple, some malt sweetness, apple juice
T: Sweet fresh red apple, tart green apple, balanced, light honey
M: Medium light
O: Great for the style. Not something I'd drink a ton of but I can't imagine a non sour style apple ale being any better

Oct 12, 2016
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ONUMello from Ohio

3.85/5  rDev -7.2%
look: 3.75 | smell: 3.75 | taste: 4 | feel: 3.75 | overall: 3.75

12oz bottle poured into a tulip
A: Slightly hazy pale brown with a one-finger head
S: Apple cider, a hint of caramel
T: Again apple cider and caramel. Tasty but more reminiscent of fruit juice than beer
M: Light-bodied, a touch sweet
O: Tasty? Absolutely. But if I had this blind I wouldn't think it was beer. I prefer NG's sours

Sep 11, 2016
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oldn00b from Virginia

4.08/5  rDev -1.7%
look: 3.5 | smell: 4.25 | taste: 4 | feel: 4.5 | overall: 4

Very nice overall. Pours hazy, fizy head fades fast. Nose and flavor is straight up fizzy apple juice. Mouthfeel is pretty great - well rounded and smooth.

Jun 24, 2016
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majorbase2 from Wisconsin

4.12/5  rDev -0.7%
look: 4.5 | smell: 3.75 | taste: 4.25 | feel: 4 | overall: 4.25

Pours a murky, dark orange color with a small head that recedes quickly. Surprisingly intimidating appearance for what turns out to be such a soft beer.

Aroma is sweet, sugary and dominated by apple. Nothing too notable here.

Taste is tart and very sweet. Strong presence of red and green apples, with some sweet honey and light cinnamon notes. A bit of a bite from the sugar. Absolutely no presence of alcohol.

Fairly easy drinker, although it is a bit acidic and sticky when it goes down. I could easily down a four pack of one of these on a hot summer day. Would like to have seen more alcohol in this one. I think a little bite would've been a nice touch to the beer, although I could see it distracting from the masterfully captured apple flavors.

Overall, another homerun fruit beer by NG. Surprised to see it in 12 oz format.

May 04, 2016
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Mateo2699 from Texas

4.12/5  rDev -0.7%
look: 3.75 | smell: 3.5 | taste: 4.5 | feel: 4 | overall: 4.25

First time reviewing a fruit beer. Poured into a snifter.

Pour is a darker reddish copper, nice opacity. Nice fizzy head reminiscent of a sour or champagne, but not as noisy.

Very subtle Apple smell, definitely not over powering. More cooked apples than fresh. Getting some honey and caramel as well.

Taste is pretty impressive. Definitely getting apples in any form you can imagine. Apple pie, apple cobbler, fresh toast, slight cinnamon and brown sugar. Slight tartness in the back end with a burnt toast after taste.

Overall pretty impressive. Flavors are spot on as the name implies.

Apr 15, 2016
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bwood06 from Wisconsin

4.24/5  rDev +2.2%
look: 4.5 | smell: 4.25 | taste: 4.25 | feel: 4 | overall: 4.25

12 oz. bottle into an IPA glass

A - Beer pours a 2 finger high off white colored head that has a bit of a reddish orange tint to it and is creamy in appearance. Head dissipates rather slowly to a thin wispy layer. Beer itself is on the hazy side of cloudy with massive carbonation rising quickly towards the surface of the glass. 4.5/5

S - The aroma is a combination of sweet and tart apples (granny smith, golden delicious, and honeycrisp). There is a bit of a lemon undertone as well as a light maltiness to it. Very juicy and smelling of fresh cut apples. 4.25/5

T - The taste follows the aroma perfectly. Combination of sweet and tart apples (granny smith, golden delicious, and honeycrisp). Also present are hints of cinnamon and honey with a bit of lemon as well. Very light malty undertone to the flavor provides a base for the apples to build off of. There is a bit of caramel that interplays with the apples right off the bat that provides an interesting sweetness in addition to the apples and honey. Lingering sweetness on the swallow. 4.25/5

M - Light and crisp during the first part of the sip leads into a slightly more medium bodied middle that brings out a slight creaminess and stickiness. Carbonation comes across as more of a tickle than a burn. Slightly drying on the back end that lingers for quite some time. 4/5

O - This beer is like drinking a combination of apple juice and apple cider as well as eating applesauce all at the same time. Excellent apple flavors throughout with a balance of sweet and tart apples. This is every bit as good as any apple cider on the market, and it's not even a cider. 4.25/5

Feb 04, 2016
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superspak from Ohio

4.32/5  rDev +4.1%
look: 4 | smell: 4.5 | taste: 4.5 | feel: 4 | overall: 4

12 ounce bottle into pint glass, bottled on 7/21/2015. Pours slightly hazy deep orange/copper color with a 1-2 finger dense off white head with good retention, that reduces to a small cap that lingers. Light spotty soapy lacing clings down the glass, with a fair amount of streaming carbonation. Aromas of big balanced sweet/tart apples, caramel, brown sugar, toasted bread, light cinnamon/spice, and herbal/toasted earthiness. Fantastic aromas with great balance and complexity of dark/bready malt, apples, and light earthy hop/spice notes; with great strength. Taste of big balanced sweet/tart apples, caramel, brown sugar, toasted bread, light cinnamon/spice, and herbal/toasted earthiness. Light-moderate fruit tartness and light herbal/spice bitterness on the finish; with lingering notes of sweet/tart apple, caramel, brown sugar, toasted bread, light cinnamon/spice, and herbal/toasted earthiness on the finish for a while. Fantastic complexity, robustness, and balance of dark/bready malt, apples, and light earthy hop/spice notes; with a great malt/tart/spiciness balance and zero cloying sweetness after the finish. Light-moderate dryness from the apple acidity as well. Light-medium carbonation and medium bodied; with a very smooth, fairly creamy/acidic, and slightly sticky balanced mouthfeel that is nice. Alcohol is very well hidden with zero warming present after the finish as expected of 4%. Overall this is a fantastic fruit beer. All around awesome complexity, robustness, and balance of dark/bready malt, apples, and light earthy hop/spice flavors; and very smooth and refreshing to drink. A highly enjoyable offering.

Jan 23, 2016
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GarthDanielson from Virginia

4/5  rDev -3.6%
look: 4 | smell: 4 | taste: 4 | feel: 4 | overall: 4

Poured from a bottle into a shaker pint, the beer is a hazy, caramel color with no real head to speak of. Aromas of apple, caramel, both rich and sweet. Very cider-like. Flavors are smooth apple forward, tart and sweet, with highlights of vanilla and cinnamon. Smooth and rich in mouth, the beer has an apple-pie like aftertaste. Lingering rich apple notes through the smooth and light finish.

Jan 03, 2016
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NolaHopHead from Louisiana

4.01/5  rDev -3.4%
look: 3.75 | smell: 4 | taste: 4 | feel: 4.25 | overall: 4

12 oz bottle. Amber gold, hazy, fizzy head disappears instantly. Apple cider aroma and taste. Not too sweet and not too bitter, almost no hint of alcohol. Soft mouthfeel with a crisp finish. Could drink this with breakfast and think I'm getting my vitamins.

Dec 29, 2015
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rodbeermunch from Nevada

3.98/5  rDev -4.1%
look: 4 | smell: 4 | taste: 4 | feel: 3.75 | overall: 4

Pours out looking like MIller High Life. Lots of champagne bubbles. Amazing clarity. Aroma was just so much apple and nothing else really.

Taste stays out of cider territory, just a great delivery vessel for apple. Green apple probably. Sweet, but like an apple, not overly sweet or sugary. Fractional tartness. Wouldn't have more than one in a day, but its a real good morning warm weather choice.

Dec 21, 2015
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Treyliff from West Virginia

4.34/5  rDev +4.6%
look: 4 | smell: 4.25 | taste: 4.5 | feel: 4.25 | overall: 4.25

12oz bottle poured into a tulip glass

A- pours a clear deep amber color with a small foamy white head that reduces to a ring around the edge and a film floating on top

S- the aroma is pure apple; like fresh apple juice. Hints of underlying sweet malt gives notes of brown sugar, but overall an apple showcase

T- sweet and malty up front and quickly gives way to fresh apple juice and red apple skin. Some earthy brown malts at the mid-palate, sweet finish with more apple on the linger

M- medium body with medium spritz carbonation leads to a foamy mouthfeel that continues into a creamy sticky finish

O- a very good apple ale that explodes with authentic apple flavor and aroma

Nov 07, 2015
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confer from Pennsylvania

4.12/5  rDev -0.7%
look: 4 | smell: 4.5 | taste: 4 | feel: 4 | overall: 4

As far as fruit beers go this is very good. The smell of apple is amazing as it is poured. The taste is like a German Apfelwein, not too sweet or tart.

Oct 24, 2015
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hoptheology from South Dakota

4.32/5  rDev +4.1%
look: 4.5 | smell: 4.25 | taste: 4.25 | feel: 4.25 | overall: 4.5

I'm giving this a proper re-master since I've explored a lot of wonderful beers in the past 3 years since I initially scored this one. To be honest I think it'll still hold up.

Served in a Nonic Pint.
Appearance : A bright amber with hues of orange and gold. The head is giant to start at 3 fingers and recedes to a 1/2 finger and leaves hilly lace behind. (Rating stays the same at 4.5)

Aromas of fresh picked apples, succulent fruits, some apple pie. Apple juice. Potpourri. A very welcoming, non-offensive brown ale base hides underneath. Could be a bit louder. (Rating goes from 5 to 4.25)

Taste : Very rich, full and tart baked apple flavor with the mushy brown ale notes tucked within. Sweet but not too sweet, tart but not too tart. Some light suggestions of cinnamon stick. Breaths of apple pie and potpourri on the finish. (Rating goes from 5 to 4.25)

Feel : Creamy, lush, with a nice crispness. (Rating goes from 4.75 to 4.25)

Overall : A very enjoyable beer which at the time beat out my top contender (Hoegaarden, also adjusted) for top spot. No doubt a great beer, but I have since found other beers that are even better (and maybe I'll look back in 3 years and find the same thing with my current top beers!). A mind-blower on first try, a simply groovy and enjoyable fruit beer after having a couple dozen of these in my lifetime. (Rating goes from 4.75 to 4.5).

Original review :
Served in a nonic pint.

Appearance : Mmmm. A lovely cider color, 70% opaque. The head is 2 fingers to start, creamy and frothy. It leaves hilly lace on the sides, eventually receding to a stout-like creaminess.

Smell : Apples. Oh my, apples. Freshly picked, baked in a pie with cinnamon and flaky crust. It finishes with a tartness rivaling apple cider. No discernible hops or malt, but the apple aroma is absolutely spot on.

Taste : Absolutely beyond amazing. Just. Speechless. OMG. This is the best fruit-infused ale I've ever had. Ever. No lie, wiping tears from my eyes. Tart punch, fresh strawberry, baked apples, dried apples, cider, cinnamon stick, spices. The perfect balance of not being overly sweet and appropriately fusing fruit and a brown ale style together! It ends candied, tart, sweet, sour, puckered, punched. Desert island/death row beer.

Feel : Creamy and frothy, medium to full bodied. Delectable. Properly carbonated. Ends tart, puckered, and crisp. Semi-dry.

Overall : New Glarus needs to bring beers further west. This beer was beyond fantastic. My NEW FAVORITE beer. And that has taken ages to accomplish over Hoegaarden, a beer I thought I simply could not retire to second place. Was not expecting this. Floored.

Oct 09, 2015
SPLITGRIN from Kentucky

4.35/5  rDev +4.8%
look: 4.25 | smell: 4.25 | taste: 4.5 | feel: 4.25 | overall: 4.25

The bottle looks considerably different then the one pictured here on BA, looks to be just an updated label though.

A strong pour gets me a fluffy inch of oatmeal colored head. Retention was solid but fades in about two minutes. Body looks just like freshly produced apple cider. Nose smells just like apple pie in a glass. Sweet and malty with a bit of moist bready notes. With first sip you quickly see why they didn't make this one a one off. The fermentation of the apples really comes through in a nice way in the flavor. Sweet and astringent with more bite then cider. Just the right amount of dryness to the body as well. This is way to easy to drink. I really wish I had regular access to this one. Just wonderful and I don't think there is anything out there like it.

Oct 06, 2015
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tjwarren from Ohio

4.28/5  rDev +3.1%
look: 3.75 | smell: 3.75 | taste: 4.5 | feel: 5 | overall: 4.25

Not a lover of fruit beers but a great lover of New Glarus so I decided to try. Wow. I am glad I did. Luscious sumptuous beer. Tastes like drinking apple pie. Would not want more than one at a time but it is extremely enjoyable by itself. I got a four pack. Saving the other three for a camping trip to drink by the river each afternoon. Wonder how some cheese might pair. Only in New Glarus coils this beer be made.

Sep 29, 2015
Thumbprint Apple Ale from New Glarus Brewing Company
Beer rating: 92 out of 100 with 1668 ratings