Introduced as a spring seasonal just two years ago, Samuel Adams Noble Pils has quickly become one of the most popular beers to come out of the Boston Beer Co. So what did Sam do this year? Replace Noble Pils with another beer.
OK, settle down. Noble Pils is not going away. Far from it. Because of the widespread love for the Czech pilsener, it is now a year-round brew. To fill its slot as a spring seasonal, Sam Adams has released Alpine Spring.
Alpine Spring is a Munich Helles lager, a golden German beer that is less hoppy and marginally maltier than Noble Pils. Hazy golden with a frothy head that looks like it belongs on a cappuccino, Alpine Spring is well carbonated with a crisp aroma containing lemon accents. It smells German.
Indeed, Alpine Spring is a refreshing light lager with a lemony zing and a creamy mouthfeel. There is no confusing this with a macrobrewed light lager, though; this one has way more body. It's not quite as interesting or unexpected as Noble Pils, but it's a solid (if safe) addition to the Sam stable. It may not stand out among a crowded tap lineup in a craft beer bar, but no one's going to order one and say, "Yuck, what the heck is this?"
One gripe, if I may: Brewers are releasing their seasonal ales way too early. This one was on the shelves in January. Really, Sam? A spring beer in the first half of winter? Alpine Spring would be a good beer to have in late spring, even summer. Alas, it'll be gone by then.
Alpine Spring, which is 5.5 percent alcohol by volume, is available in six-packs for about $8 to $9 and in the new Brewer's Choice 12-pack for around $14.
That variety pack also contains two other new beers that are not quite as successful: Mighty Oak (5.7 percent ABV) is an amber ale dominated by caramel and biscuity malts, but it's a few turns too sweet. Whitewater IPA (5.8 percent ABV), a hybrid of a white wheat ale and an India pale ale, is an unbalanced, astringently bitter beer that reeks of lemons, grapefruits, and flowers. I love bitter beers, but the two styles in this one don't reconcile; there's too much going on, and it all clashes.
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UPDATED: NOV 13, 2017 Pours a hazy golden amber color with a white head. Aromas of hops and citrus. Taste the same with a nice tart bitter finish. Light palate and light lacing in the glass.
Pours a nice amber color. Nice sweet malt nose with a hint of hops. Taste is caramel, with mild hops and a touch of fruit.
12oz Flasche. Goldgelbes Bier mut schönem weissen Schaum. Hopfen und Getreidearoma. Geschmack leicht süss und süffig.
Review from notes taken in 2013. The pour is cloudy with an outstanding head volume, lacing and retention. The nose is a bit weak, but has nice hints of lemon and light hops over a rather pronounced biscuit. Light medium body with a smooth texture. Normal carbonation level with a bit of effervescence in the middle and a nice somewhat prickly finish. The flavor profile is very good. Quite reasonable in terms of intensity, complexity and balance. Slightly tart and lemon notes begin then flow to a mild earthy and herbal bitterness. The middle brings a nice burst of biscuit to balance. The finish is a bit crisp and semi-dry.
based on notes from 2012. Looks yellow. Smells of pilsner pale with nice hops.
Rated based on notes taken 23 Jun 2012 -- A zesty and refreshing beer. Spring time is the perfect time for this beer.
UPDATED: NOV 27, 2014 330ml bottle served in a tulip glass. A: Pours a very cloudy color forming a big creamy, thin bubbled and solid white head. Good retention and lots of soapy and lingering lacings formed and left in the glass S: Smooth and pleasant in the nose. Slightly sweet upfront. Notes of sweet grains, pepper, spices and flowery hops. Notes of oranges, orange zest, pumpkins and bready low fermentation yeasts T: Slightly sweet upfront. Very malty and bready. Strong notes of orange and orange zest. In overall, a quite smooth and slightly sweet beer. Mild bitter hops bitterness M: Light and very smooth body. Medium carbonation. Bready spicy aftertaste O: Great drinkability. Smoothing ans refreshing. Another great Samuel Adams beer [ BA Review @ 10/31/2013 ]
"similar to, but different than the noble pils. tettnanger hops in here? the aroma and flavor are leaning towards being stright up fruity with a little less crispness and hop bite than the pils, but it is still quite good for a lager. "
Pours from 12 oz bottle a slightly cloudy golden/amber color with a big white head. Aroma is of malts, hops, citrus, moss, slight pine, and some floral notes. The flavours are definitely on the sweet side, with honey, lemon and light-flavored malts, with some dry and semi-spicy hops show through a little bit in the finish and in the aftertaste. Decent, go to lager I guess.
Bottle at Kaunis Kampela, Helsinki. Originally rated 26052012. Colour is clear golden with small white head. Aromas and flavours: Grain, sweetness and malts.