Alt | New Glarus Brewing Company

Liked This Beer
4.05 w/ 158 Ratings

Brewed by:
New Glarus Brewing Company
Wisconsin, United States

Style: Altbier

Alcohol by volume (ABV): 9.50%

Availability: Limited (brewed once)

Notes / Commercial Description:
No notes at this time.

Added by Bitterbill on 11-09-2008

This beer is retired; no longer brewed.

User Ratings & Reviews
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Ratings: 158 |  Reviews: 124
Photo of ZombPumpkin
5/5  rDev +23.5%
look: 5 | smell: 5 | taste: 5 | feel: 5 | overall: 5

Photo of xmasboy
5/5  rDev +23.5%

Photo of smogfood
5/5  rDev +23.5%

Photo of hu5om
5/5  rDev +23.5%

Photo of redgreen
5/5  rDev +23.5%

Photo of TATURBO
5/5  rDev +23.5%

Photo of brokenoly
4.88/5  rDev +20.5%
look: 5 | smell: 4.5 | taste: 5 | feel: 5 | overall: 5

Simple. The Best One and out Beer I have ever tasted. So complex and different I am writing my very first review. The color and clarity are the total opposite of what you would expect from this a brew this fullfilling.From the unexpected cream head, the complex flavor, depth of feel and lingering tastes that keep you guessing, I can only imagine a man trying to best himself at his craft. Do not let the ABV trick you into thinking that catagorically ALT is a brew with punch. When you taste this, you know the talented meister in WI had nothing less then using the bottle to knock wine tasters off their pedastal as inspiration. Stock up, save up, and enjoythis brew. ALT comes with a sence of pride from it's makers, and a renewed admiration of taste over all else,not soon forgotten.

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Photo of nullz0r
4.85/5  rDev +19.8%
look: 4.5 | smell: 4.5 | taste: 5 | feel: 5 | overall: 5

More so an "imperial" alt, Carey's take on the style pushes it to its limits (but with great success).

A: Brilliant Bronze body; two finger head

S: Malty, rich, complex; hints of spice

T: Incredible flavor; malty with little hoppy flavor, hints of spice, perfectly balanced alcoholic bite.

M: Excellent carbonation, noticeable substance to this beer, but not chewy like a stout.

D: Deceptively smooth flavor that doesn't get old. My favorite New Glarus offering.

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Photo of MNJR
4.82/5  rDev +19%
look: 4 | smell: 4.5 | taste: 5 | feel: 5 | overall: 5

There may be some of the flavor profile of New Glarus' Spotted Cow in this brew. The only other flavor profile that comes to mind is Scottish Ales or barley wines: sweet and strong. The best features are the mouth feel and carbonation which are superb: grainy (in a good way), refreshing and effervescent going down. As far as flavor, the toffee/butter (diacetyl?) is apparent, but all I can say is that the flavor is far more complex than just this, and none of the flavors seem to overpower the others. I get inoffensive fruit, and an expansive range of extremely subtle flavors: cherry, vanilla, oak, malt, trace of hops, blackberry jam (just a faint hint?). Obviously, the abundant sweetness and fruitiness may be a negative, but it's not "sickly sweet" like some Scottish Ales.

This is unlike the other Alt beers I've had, which have all been German and on tap (at Heuttenbar in Chicago), and had far less fruit flavor and sweetness. This is a unique, full flavored beer that can really be savored and enjoyed. The high ABV is not even noticeable within the complexity of this beer. If you can find this, get some.

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Photo of hopsbreath
4.8/5  rDev +18.5%
look: 5 | smell: 5 | taste: 4.5 | feel: 5 | overall: 5

Not for the first time and not for the last time, a big thanks goes out to zimmerbloke for sending me another delight. I knew nothing about this 12 ounce bottle until I opened it tonight and took one sniff. Oh my. I had to find out more. The label says that this has a three hour boil of caramel malts and turbinado, is open fermented, and aged on oak. A little research tells me that this is over two years old and contains an ABV over 9%. This is no ordinary Alt beer here. A review is definitely in order. Split with my wife into our matching pair of Portsmouth snifters. On to my thoughts.

A: The turbinado reference is appropriate here... Melted to be exact with a nice clarity. A finger of dusty white head dissipates to a spotty cap. We've actually got some nice unexpected legs here. Off to a nice start. I can't find any reason to dock any points. 5/5

S: As nice as this looks, the smell is where I really start to take note. Sugary dates initially come to mind. The brown alcohol is totally unrestrained and plays lead guitar to the sweet dried fruits rhythm pacing. Staying on the 4 piece band theme, the drums keeping time in the background would have to be the acidic twang that seems to be the New Glarus signature. The bass player would be the faint vanilla hue that is interesting in this beer, and similarly hidden in the background of a band. I still see no need to dock any points. 5/5

T: The copious amount of fermentables gives off a pure caramel sweetness that is highlighted by some cinnamon-like spiciness from the biting wood and kissed by the same vanilla found in the nose. An interesting extra flavor I had a hell of a hard time putting a finger on, just revealed itself to me as grape seed... Very interesting. I'm having a hard time picking out any other flavor characteristics but the ones it does have are well integrated and in wonderful balance. It should be noted that the alcohol from the aroma is minimal on the taste buds. 4.5/5

M: Smooth, crisp, and full-bodied? That's a rare feat for a beer to accomplish, but this one does just that. 5/5

D: This bad boy is immensely drinkable. Bring it back as an "Unplugged" beer at the very least Mr. Carey. You've got a real winner here and given a little hype, this would have beer geeks falling all over themselves to get a hold of. I do believe this beer seals the deal for me. New Glarus is my favorite brewery in America... Its not even a contest anymore. 5/5

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Photo of Sconnie
4.8/5  rDev +18.5%
look: 4.5 | smell: 4.5 | taste: 5 | feel: 4.5 | overall: 5

I list this as an Altbier, although it would be more accurately termed an Imperial Alt or something of that nature (12 degrees Plato), it's really Dan Carey's own spin on the style.
Copper colored, smells of caramel malt and vanilla. Tastes like a big bold altbier, caramel, a noticeable but not overwhelming taste of oak. On the drier side, probably because of the turbinado sugar. Very flavorful but very drinkable for something so big and bold. Really a fantastic beer from New Glarus, and a bargain at their normal 6-pack price (rather than their "unplugged" specialty series). Go drink this beer!

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Photo of ronhocker
4.77/5  rDev +17.8%
look: 4 | smell: 4.5 | taste: 5 | feel: 4.5 | overall: 5

New Glarus describes this as a departure from the alt style with more dark flavors and hops, but it is somewhat close. They claim it would be more accurately called a "triple alt" since it comes in at 20deg Plato. Some quick math tells me that means this thing is around 9% ABV.

I don't know why, but this is selling for the same price as spotted cow and all other NG 6 packs, despite having twice as much malt and being aged in oak barrels per the label. This thing is more like an unplugged beer with out the unplugged price!!!

It pours a copper orange color, head retention is not the best. Although it is bottle re-fermented according to the label, no indications of yeast in the bottle.

The smell is very sweet, has indications of apples and toffee. Although I am also tasting the "apple ale" tonight as well, so my palette could be off.

The taste is perfect. Everything is balanced well. Just enough hops and bitterness. Sweetness is great. Some toffee and dark flavors. I think The New Glarus website's description is very accurate.

I used to love new glarus Native Ale, which is no longer made, but was an Alt. This one is better hands down. Except that considering I have only had 1/2 of a one tonight, and I can already feel it, backs up the mathematics of the 9%+ ABV.

This beer may now be in my top 5.

 1,319 characters

Photo of KI9A
4.62/5  rDev +14.1%
look: 4.5 | smell: 5 | taste: 4.5 | feel: 4.5 | overall: 4.5

I'm not really sure where to begin with this beer. Impressive isn't a strong enough word.

A: Bottle, into tulip glass. Foggy amber, puffy off white head, lasts forever. Picture perfect lace.

S: Whiskey laced with sugar. About the most amazing smell I have ever had in a beer.

T: Again, where to begin. First thing, You notice a big time bourbon taste, followed by a really sweet, dark fruit, figgy hit. Reminds me of a Belgian strong sweetness, but, I think that just might be the 9% ABV talking to me. I detect a small shot of hops at the end, with a big warmth of alcohol. Funny, but, don't detect the huge malt amount-even though I am a malt0head!

M: See above. Leaves a long lasting sweetness in your mouth, almost like the lacing on the glass.

D: 9% ABV, surely not a session beer. But, a perfect, I mean perfect beer for a cold evening.

I have totally fallen in love with this brewery. I like the whole outlook of Dan & company, and obviously the beers. Makes it worth the 5 hour drive to cheeseland, for a beer run. $7 a sixpack? Awesome. Just freaking awesome.

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Photo of TheKingofWichita
4.58/5  rDev +13.1%
look: 5 | smell: 4.5 | taste: 4.5 | feel: 5 | overall: 4.5

Pours a beautiful copper bronze color with a thick rocky off white head and great lacing. The head eventually settles down to a rim above the glorious liquid. Smells of rum soaked fruits, biscuit, yeast bread and a little alcohol. Tastes of sweet malts mellowed with a little hops and notes of fig, plum, rum, maple, and vanilla. Mouthfeel is wonderful with thickness and rich carbonation. Drinkability is superb.

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Photo of geographie
4.57/5  rDev +12.8%
look: 4 | smell: 4.5 | taste: 4.5 | feel: 4.5 | overall: 5

appearance is dark copper with off white head, quick to dissipate. aroma is as if the fruit wants to escape but is holding back, true to form. notes of buckwheat and corriander come through. flavor is mildly grainy with some very nice warming alcohol coming through, accented by some gently cloying spice. bitterness is reserved, no hop aroma or flavor detected. delectable and medium full body. faint carbonation but large bubbles. yum!

 437 characters

Photo of Gonzoillini
4.5/5  rDev +11.1%

Photo of mikesgroove
4.5/5  rDev +11.1%
look: 4.5 | smell: 4.5 | taste: 4.5 | feel: 4.5 | overall: 4.5

Another fine offering from New Glarus that sealed off my evening quite nicely. I had been waiting to come across this one and I have to say, I was not dissapointed. Served cold and poured into a pint glass and allowed to warm up, this one was consumed on 01/02/2009.

The pour was very nice, almost perfect for the style with a clean looking dark amber coming forward right away. Nice carbonation bubbling up toward the surface here as well, with a rich white, creamy head of lace on top for all the world to see.

The aroma was lovely. Rich bready malts, hints of toffee, light pears, and a touch of spice and grapes. Really just spot on. As it warms and you begin to get further down into the pint you can really start to pick up on some of the nice light fruit notes, pears, cloves as well as a bit more of a bitter twang to your last few sips. Smooth, mellow and rediculously drinkable, this is exactly what I wanted an alt to taste like. The final sips were punctuated by a wonderful mix of grape like sourness and a fine touch of grass like hops.

Overall another winner from New Glarus. They are fast approaching the level of my favorite brewer. Just really very consistent, and every beer better then the one before.

 1,225 characters

Photo of Loogs
4.5/5  rDev +11.1%

Photo of Strix
4.5/5  rDev +11.1%
look: 4 | smell: 4 | taste: 5 | feel: 4 | overall: 4.5

Bronze, decent head and some lacing.

Smells of malt, spices, and wood. I also get fresh apples for some reason.

Caramel malt, cherry, alcohol, sugar, cola, cocoa, wood and clove. Complex? Yes.

Mouthfeel smooth, carbonation bubbly.

This was inventive and drinkable. Never really had an Altbier that made an impression either way, but this is a winner. Has some Belgian qualities to it, reminiscent of something Unibroue would make. Seek it out.

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Photo of GIJoe33
4.5/5  rDev +11.1%

Photo of groovy24
4.5/5  rDev +11.1%

Photo of Pauly2X
4.48/5  rDev +10.6%
look: 5 | smell: 4.5 | taste: 4.5 | feel: 5 | overall: 4

A- Copper color, massive two finger head.

S- Carmelized malts with a slight roasted presence and a light whiff of noble hops.

T- Complex caramel sweetness greets you at first. The middle features a dry complexity that accentuates the almost peppery hop character. A slight warming note adds to the smooth finish.

M- Solidly smooth and rich, just enough tang to break things up.

D- Dan, you better keep making this!

Simply a fantastic beer. This just might be the best from New Glarus yet!

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Photo of brewcrew76
4.47/5  rDev +10.4%
look: 4 | smell: 4.5 | taste: 4.5 | feel: 4.5 | overall: 4.5

A - Bright orange copper with 2 fingers off white head that slowly fades to a thin layer of foam. A lot of bubbles rushing to the top.

S - Oak with caramel and toffee, fruity with a touch of sweetness and a hint of grassy, spicy hops.

T - Sweet toffee and caramel followed by hints of oak, a sugar cookie like sweetness, fruity in the middle and a touch of spicy hops and alcohol. There is a unique lingering aftertaste I can't quite place.

M - Medium body that feels soft on the tongue, maybe even a touch creamy.

D - Unique and interesting. Not your standard alt and full of subtle complexities. I swear they use the same oak vats for all oak aged beers and they have a similar aroma/taste you can pick up in all of them.

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Photo of KBomb
4.47/5  rDev +10.4%
look: 4 | smell: 4.5 | taste: 4.5 | feel: 4.5 | overall: 4.5

It's taken me a while to get around to reviewing this beer in part because each bottle of my sixer has had a little different nuance. I'll review the best of the bunch, but make a note of a few anomalies I observe bottle to bottle.

Alt pours a bright copper/amber, with a fluffy eggshell head that sticks around. Smell has some crisp flavors; a spicy spy apple jumps out into the nose, surrounded by rich caramel malt and the most subtle hint of floral hops. Taste is a great balance of caramel malt, fruity pear, a little hops, and just a bit of oak chardonnay. Rich without being overly sweet, chased with a pleasant alcohol warmth that does not distract from the flavors up front. Very smooth. Medium body, crisp mouthfeel. ABV is a little high for sessions, but its not hard to have more than one.

The best bottle of the sixer was absolutely delicious-- usurping my former favorite Alt. Still I should note that a couple of bottles had a bit of "musty" flavors and the alcohol was more astringent. I don't know if they came from separate batches, but those bottles would be "C" grade while the better ones are a solid "A".

 1,128 characters

Photo of emerge077
4.45/5  rDev +9.9%
look: 4.5 | smell: 4.5 | taste: 4.5 | feel: 5 | overall: 4

Poured at cellar temperature into a tumbler glass.
Puffy head of foam that laces all over the sides of the glass.

Sweet fruit and smudgy oak flourishes in the aroma, with a malty blanket underneath.

Full bodied, candied fruits and oak notes in the taste. For me the oak adds a lot, similar to his use of oak in the Bohemian Lager. Just subtle enough to not be obtrusive, yet it adds a layer of depth for sure. Dries out nicely in the finish. Very smooth and malty, it just wraps around you like a warm blanket. Long and lingering oak in the aftertaste that seems to last forever. So rich and tasty, i've never had a German Alt this good...

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Alt from New Glarus Brewing Company
Beer rating: 81% out of 100 with 158 ratings
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