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Alpine Beer Company Ichabod Ale (2009)

 (RETIRED)
overall
99
96
style
Serve in Snifter, Tulip, Tumbler

bottling
unknown

on tap
unknown

distribution
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RATINGS: 113   WEIGHTED AVG: 3.86   SEASONAL: Autumn   EST. CALORIES: 150   ABV: 5%
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COMMERCIAL DESCRIPTION
Our seasonal holiday ale. This year’s base beer is a Belgian-style Sour Ale aged in a mix of red and white wine barrels. Generous additions of pumpkins, cinnamon and nutmeg were added in the barrels. Some funky brett nips at your taste buds. Share this hauntingly delicious brew with a friend because two heads are better than none.


FlacoAlto's rating

4.1
   AROMA 8/10   APPEARANCE 4/5   TASTE 8/10   PALATE 5/5   OVERALL 16/20
FlacoAlto (3810) - Tucson, Arizona, USA - DEC 23, 2010
A solid pour into my Lost Abbey Teku glass produces a two-finger thick, pale tan colored head. The beer is a dark amber color that shows an almost clear, gold tinged, light amber color. Up front the beer smells most prominently of lactic acid up front; tart and inviting with a supporting backbone of spicy and woody oak character. Somehow the lactic acidity reminds me a bit of creamy lemon or tart grapefruit. Really the oak and acidity are the most prominent in the nose, and I really don’t smell much in the way of Pumpkin and spices. Having just said that I think I am getting a sort of round, soft, nutmeg and / or cinnamon note that almost brings out a caramelized note just a bit towards the finish. Hmm, and now there is a distinct note of woody black pepper that melds in with a soft mustiness. As the beer warms the soft, round spices become a touch more prominent, but it is never more than subtle, which is exactly what I was hoping for. The oak character becomes quite a bit more prominent as the beer warms up during the second and third pours, but never providing more than a solid, spicy / woody backbone.

Very nicely tart tasting with a solid grapefruit like acidity; the lactic acid adds a lushness to the palate and it coats the mouth. There is a nice prickle to the texture from a persistent, but not overly aggressive carbonation; the prickle is actually boosted by the acidity and this is actually probably the main source of the prickly “texture” as the actual carbonation is quite slight. The finish has a soft, lingering, almost woody, nutmeg like note to it. There is a certain earthiness to this beer, it is quite subtle and somewhat accentuated by the hint of spices, the woody oak notes and the oak spiciness. At times the acidity here adds a flavor that is quite substantially of sour grapefruit, it is quite refreshing and tasty. Towards the end of my last glass I start to get a squash like flavor in the finish; it is wrapped up in the tartness, but also has a touch of vegetal squash flesh to it. At times the acidity seems to somehow accentuate a perceived sweetness in this beer, which in turn accentuates a lightly caramelized and even chewy grain character.

The actual pumpkin character here is quite slight, in fact I can’t really say that I can pick it out, the spices too are slight and I really like how soft and subtle they are here as I hate when these get over done. I really like the creaminess that the texture has, the malt body and lactic acidity combine to create quite the lush character without keeping this from being quaffable. The funk here is quite simplistic in some ways as it is definitely focused on the lactic character; this character is lush and well integrated and is just bracing enough to keep me quite interested. This does not really have a wild, funky, or Brett influenced, but I can’t say that I am missing the wildness that I so like in Lambics; this beer manages to work quite well without it. This is quite the nice beer, easily one of my favorite beers with pumpkin / pumpkin-spices in it, though this is clearly not the focus in this beer, but both do contribute subtly to the profile of this beer. A very well done beer that I have thoroughly enjoyed and which I am quite disappointed to find that my last glass so quickly disappears.


3.7
   AROMA 8/10   APPEARANCE 4/5   TASTE 7/10   PALATE 4/5   OVERALL 14/20
GT2 (8510) - San Diego County, California, USA - NOV 4, 2013
651mL at a bottle share. Treated like god nectar by participants. Clear amber pour, low acid cut foam. Nose is fresh and funky, mild squash, citrus, lime, not much pumpkin. Taste is almost all lime citric, extremely mouth puckering but no vinegar/acetic thankfully. Whatever pumpkin was in this beer is impossible to pick out over the heavy acid. All lemon/lime juice- one note.

3.8
   AROMA 8/10   APPEARANCE 4/5   TASTE 7/10   PALATE 4/5   OVERALL 15/20
arminjewell (6293) - Minneapolis, Minnesota, USA - NOV 2, 2013
Pour out of 22 oz bottle, dark reddish brow with thin white head, aroma brought notes of big tart fruits, hints of slight vegetal notes, hints of earth, slight yogurt, hints of toffee, slight spice, touch of grain. Taste is a mix of spice, grass, slight vanilla, hints of toffee, slight grain, finishing bitter, dry, slightly tart.

3.1
   AROMA 7/10   APPEARANCE 3/5   TASTE 7/10   PALATE 3/5   OVERALL 11/20
adnielsen (9285) - Fort Collins, Colorado, USA - NOV 2, 2013
Bottle @ Matt’s house, courtesy of Armin. Thanks! Pours a hazy reddish appearance with a thin tan head. Vinegar, black cherry, vanilla, blackberry aroma. Tangy, dark cherry, blackberry, red wine, vanilla, rich vinegar flavor. A bit oxidized. Not bad.

3.5
   AROMA 7/10   APPEARANCE 4/5   TASTE 6/10   PALATE 4/5   OVERALL 14/20
Steve_0 (2759) - Denver, Colorado, USA - NOV 2, 2013
Bottle at Matt’s with friends, courtesy of Armin. Thanks Man! Pour is clear amber with a small cream head that quickly dissipated. Big sour fruity, peach skin, pumpkin, lightly spicy, earthy, lemony, and green appley aroma. Taste is big green apples, pears, white wine vinegar, oaky, caramelly, toffee, and huge acetic finish. Slick mouthfeel with soft carbonation. Pretty nice sour, but this one has gotten way too acetic over the years.

3.2
   AROMA 7/10   APPEARANCE 3/5   TASTE 6/10   PALATE 3/5   OVERALL 13/20
mcberko (6709) - Vancouver, British Columbia, CANADA - JUL 6, 2013
22 oz. bottle, sent from St. Fun (thanks a lot, Josh), pours a fairly clear orange amber with a medium beige head. Aroma is very complex, full of white wine, brett, cinnamon and nutmeg - sounds bizarre, but it somehow works beautifully. Flavour brings out notes of white wine, highly tart light fruits, a moderate brett presence, with trace elements of cinnamon and nutmeg. You wouldn’t think such qualities would work well together, but somehow it all works. Medium tart mouthfeel, with a bit of vinegar, and a finish of pumpkin and nutmeg. Decent, but too acidic and vinegary for me.

4.1
   AROMA 8/10   APPEARANCE 3/5   TASTE 8/10   PALATE 4/5   OVERALL 18/20
burg326 (3768) - Florida, USA - JUN 14, 2013
22 ounce bottle poured a dark cloudy orange color with aromas that blow your mind away with sour pumpkins and wine. I felt the enamel from my teeth start to hurt when I took my whiff. Flavors were a mixture of tartness, light sourness, barnyard, hay, and some wine. At the very end you get subtle pumpkin pulp, damn fine beer, wish I had more bottles.

4.7
   AROMA 9/10   APPEARANCE 5/5   TASTE 10/10   PALATE 4/5   OVERALL 19/20
Beergirl123 (15) - - APR 22, 2013
Great sour ale. Probably one of my favorites. The red is a beautiful color for the beer and that fact that it’s barrel aged is great. Highly recommended.

3.9
   AROMA 9/10   APPEARANCE 3/5   TASTE 7/10   PALATE 3/5   OVERALL 17/20
thome50 (1049) - Boringville aka Irvine, California, USA - NOV 27, 2012
Bottle. Pours a light brown to amber with a thin head. Aroma is cinnamon, sour, dirty sock and some light pumpkin. Taste is more subdued with the pumpkin and fall spices but the sour comes out more. The first bit is sour with then some spice and pumpkin flesh. Overall, probably the best pumpkin sour I’ve had though that doesn’t say much since I’ve had around 4 total.

4
   AROMA 8/10   APPEARANCE 4/5   TASTE 8/10   PALATE 4/5   OVERALL 16/20
dalekliz (878) - San Diego, California, USA - NOV 8, 2012
Bottle. Pours a murky amber-brown with a fizzy off-white head and lots of bubble. Complex sour aroma, of wine, wood, spices, squash, malt, yeast. Sour taste, starts crisp and fruity, then picks up a lot of malty, yeasty bread notes, with light spices. Lingering bready sourness. Really different and tasty.

3.9
   AROMA 7/10   APPEARANCE 4/5   TASTE 8/10   PALATE 4/5   OVERALL 16/20
KickInChalice (860) - Chicago, Illinois, USA - OCT 30, 2012
Poured from a 22 oz. bottle into a tulip. Ichabod pours a dark faded cloudy cherry color with a swirl of an off white cap. A few spots of lace cling to the glass as the beer subsides. The wine barrels come through nicely up front and at the end. A bit of white and red wine, and oak come through, and then a lot of cinnamon, some nutmeg, and some mild pumpkin. White wine comes through first with a nice bite. Cinnamon, nutmeg, and pumpkin come in next, with a tartness that is fairly strong. The finish has a bit of a cabernet bite. Overall the flavor is tart, with strong cinnamon and mild pumpkin. The body is standard for the style, with a smooth, medium carbonation. It is pleasantly sour, with a nice tannic bite throughout. The tartness and wine barrel character create a nice salivation throughout the sip. Although not known for their sours (at least in my mind), this is a beer that is well put together and does not overdue it on the pumpkin.


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