Though Alpine beers are fairly new to our market, I fell in love with their beer a long time ago. There are certain beers that I will always remember my first taste of, and Super IPA, a New Belgium/Alpine collaboration is one of them. It was such an amazing, clean, and fresh IPA that I knew I had to buy more while I could. Windows Up from Alpine is very reminiscent of Super IPA, and I have absolutely zero complaints about it.
You don’t have to bury your nose in this one to get the aroma. It leaps from the glass. Grapefruit and pine are distinct even from a distance. A closer investigation reveals pineapple and floral sweetness as well as a bit of lemon.
Dive in, Hopheads, because this is outstanding! But if you’re expecting me to write about a malt contribution, read no farther. As it warms, there is a slight malt sweetness, but the malt here is definitely a supporting actor or actress whose main role is to let the star shine. The hops are so bright, so clean, and so amazingly complex, that adding a malt character would be a disservice. From a slightly floral and Sour Patch sweet/bitter combination on the front of the tongue, the medium bodied beer goes even more hop-heavy as pineapple and citrus notes alight on the sides. The aftertaste envelops the tongue in residual flavors of pine, grass, and a lemon twang.
Hop fiends, find this beer. It is a prime example of how focusing on a single ingredient can make the overall product immensely complex. Sometimes brewers try too hard, and their beers are just too complicated. Smoked blackberry stouts with elderberry aged in bourbon barrels with Brett added…. C’mon, make me a malty brown, a roasty stout, or a hoppy IPA, and I’ll be happy. That said, I owe a big thanks to Alpine for doing the latter with Windows Up.
*Am I revealing my age in what I assume is a well-known reference? If so…
Outdoor Friendliness (I don’t rate glass for the outdoors)… N/A
Aroma (flowers were popular this week, but this is my kind of bouquet)…10/10
Taste (clean and unabashedly hop-centric)…10/10
Style-appropriateness (the pinnacle of IPAs)…10/10