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Ballast Point Sour Wench Blackberry Ale
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overall
74
93
style
Serve in Flute, Shaker

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RATINGS: 107   WEIGHTED AVG: 3.27   SEASONAL: Special   IBU: 20   EST. CALORIES: 162   ABV: 5.4%
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COMMERCIAL DESCRIPTION
Sour Wench was a Home Brew Mart recipe that we made every year for the Southern California Home brewers Fest in Temecula. This Blackberry Ale was originally developed by Ballast Pointís original Master Brewer Peter AíHearn and Colby Chandler. While interning in Germany, Peter fell in love with the Berliner Weiss style of beer. A beer made with a procedure in which the mash was soured. The tartness of the Oregon State Marion Blackberries, at one pound per gallon, was a perfect addition for this sour style. Sour Wench is not aged in oak barrels. In the end, itís a great bridge beer into the Sour Styleís.


3.6
   AROMA 7/10   APPEARANCE 4/5   TASTE 7/10   PALATE 3/5   OVERALL 15/20
dnstone (2137) - Las Vegas, Nevada, USA - NOV 19, 2010
Sour and berry fruity aroma. Amber-purple in color. Sour, but not overly so, with blackberry notes. Just "ehh".

2.8
   AROMA 7/10   APPEARANCE 4/5   TASTE 4/10   PALATE 2/5   OVERALL 11/20
JoeMcPhee (8411) - Toronto, ON, Ontario, CANADA - AUG 28, 2010
Tap at Neighborhood. Very odd fatty, fruity nose. A bit of light lactic character along with a bit of doughiness. Musty with notes of black currant and plum as well. A little bit of light spiciness on the finish but itís a pretty odd duck. I get the sense this will age into something quite different, but itís still a work in progress here. Tartness picks up as it begins to warm, but I still canít say Iím a fan.

3
   AROMA 7/10   APPEARANCE 3/5   TASTE 5/10   PALATE 3/5   OVERALL 12/20
elihapa (1525) - Honolulu, Hawaii, USA - AUG 16, 2010
8/14/10 notes: Pours cough syrup red-magenta, with brown hues and a pinkish head. Ominous. Aroma of ripe pomegranate, cranberry, blackberry, sugar, lactic acid. Palate is light. Flavor follows aroma, but starts with a sour hit and moves sweeter as it goes. Aftertaste is blackberry seeds and cranberry.

3.6
   AROMA 7/10   APPEARANCE 4/5   TASTE 7/10   PALATE 3/5   OVERALL 15/20
Lagunitasfan (1313) - San Diego, California, USA - AUG 6, 2010
On tap at Sourfest 2010. Ruby rose colored pour with a nice head. Nose is blackberries and yeasty hay. Clean fruity crisp taste. Good, but unremarkable.

3.7
   AROMA 7/10   APPEARANCE 4/5   TASTE 7/10   PALATE 4/5   OVERALL 15/20
daknole (9055) - Scottsdale, Arizona, USA - AUG 2, 2010
Tap at Stone!!! Reddish pour. Tart berries, red wine, light yeast. Flavor huts with a nice sour, prickly bite. Unripe blackberries, red wine, light oak. Nice.

3.1
   AROMA 6/10   APPEARANCE 5/5   TASTE 5/10   PALATE 3/5   OVERALL 12/20
brokensail (10804) - Orange County, California, USA - JUL 21, 2010
A: The pour is a dark crimson looking color with a huge pink tinted head that just wonít go away. S: The nose offers up some blackberry, tannic fruit skins, some mild notes of grass, and a bit of oak. T: The flavor is somewhat blunt. Certainly astringent and somewhat bitter, almost, with lots of fruit skin and seed flavor. A bit of blackberry and lemon juice tartness. M: The body is light to medium with a somewhat soft, but plentiful, carbonation. D: Of the sour Ballast Point beers, this is my least favorite. The fruit flavor is not really there and overall, itís somewhat abrasive and harsh.

2.9
   AROMA 6/10   APPEARANCE 3/5   TASTE 6/10   PALATE 2/5   OVERALL 12/20
KimJohansen (10349) - Frederiksberg C, DENMARK - JUL 19, 2010
Cloudy deep red with a medium to large pinkish creamy head. Aroma had blackberries, roasted malt, hay and wood. Flavour came out dry with berries, roasted malt, caramel, hay and wood. Finished semi sweet.

3.8
   AROMA 6/10   APPEARANCE 4/5   TASTE 7/10   PALATE 4/5   OVERALL 17/20
Rusty (1536) - Mesa, Arizona, USA - JUL 4, 2010
Pours a reddish pink with a small white head. Aroma is berries some wheat and sourness. Flavor is light sourness wheat and fruity berries.

4.4
   AROMA 8/10   APPEARANCE 5/5   TASTE 8/10   PALATE 5/5   OVERALL 18/20
bhightow (24) - San Diego, California, USA - JUL 2, 2010
red, sparkling, minimal head, medium sweetness, lightly sour, light body, thin feel, fizzy, floral,

3.2
   AROMA 6/10   APPEARANCE 4/5   TASTE 6/10   PALATE 3/5   OVERALL 13/20
MartinT (7797) - Montreal, Quebec, CANADA - JUN 13, 2010
My Bottom Line:
Pomegranate-like fruitiness grows into blackberries before awkward lactic emanations fall into a dry and mildly tart finish.

Further Personal Perceptions:
-Sumptuous foam crowns the pink-laced luminous red haze.
-The aroma had strange yogurt-like funk coming from the sour mash (I suppose). Not the most appealing incarnation of lactobacillus, letís say...
-Lots of small bubbles help drinkability.
-The fruit character mostly comes off as juicy and simple.
-With a name like Sour Wench, I admit I was expecting more tartness (which I got in their wonderful Hout Black Currant though).

On tap at their Linda Vista brewery.


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