FlacoAlto (3676) - Tucson, Arizona, USA - JUN 17, 2008
4.7 AROMA 10/10 APPEARANCE 5/5 TASTE 9/10 PALATE 4/5 OVERALL 19/20
UPDATED: JUN 18, 2008 2008 Cork Date; Sampled June 2008
A fairly soft pour produces a five finger thick, pale tan colored head that includes a full two-finger or more that is above the rim of my glass. The head is just about perfect, forming a structural mesa as it subsides as well as leaving lots of frothy lace on the sides of my glass. The beer is a lightly hazed, honey-gold color that shows an orange tinted, lighter gold color when held up to the light. The aroma is quite expressive, noticeable as I pour it and visually inspect it, I get a vibrant hop character (lemon zest and herbs) as well as a soft fruity backdrop. Very aromatic, insanely so for a beer of this strength; vibrant malt aromatics of crushed saltine crackers, wild-flower honey, fresh crushed wheat, grassy grain and hay are all initially noticeable. Other notes of orange zest (which really comes into its own as the beer warms), soft ginger, white pepper, green apples, clove, lots of herbal notes and wild-flower aromas are noticeable. The aroma on this is just so vibrant, so fresh and so incredible, regardless of this beers strength; the fact that this is so low in alcohol just makes it all that much more remarkable.
Very light feeling as it hits my tongue, the carbonation has subsided some as I spent so much time with the aroma, but it still provides a substantial tickle and texture to this beer. Lightly sweet tasting, this accentuates notes of orange zest and melon, but this is nicely balanced by notes of fresh dried hay, soft yet expressive herbal notes and a light lingering bitterness in the finish. This has a light peppery note to it, some soft spicy phenols, and lots of underlying fruity esters that provides lots of soft, subtle notes of spice and fruit. There is a nice pale malt / grain character here, that plays a secondary role, but is quite noticeable; in addition to the aforementioned honey-malt sweetness there is a dry, cracker like grain character, a touch of grassiness and just a wonderful, chewy malt character that is especially noticeable in the finish.
Down right quaffable, I could drink liters of this at a time, it is so easy to take large sips of this beer. The 750ml bottle of this disappears a lot faster than usual. My second pour is much like the first. It picks up a little bit more fullness on the palate, but is still eminently quaffable. A touch of yeast adds a boost to the grain character by accentuating a sort of dough-like character. One of the biggest components of the flavor here are the orange zest notes; these are either from the hops chosen or from actual orange zest, though I don’t know which.
Both the head and the aroma are huge for a beer of this strength. The staying power & lofty structure of the head, despite the reduced amount of malt in this is quite impressive and I can’t say enough about how vibrant the aroma is. It is almost jarring to take a sip for the first time and find out how light this beer is; visually and aromatically it makes you think that this is a big beer. The flavor though is no slouch either, once it starts to open up it shows a deep complexity and savoriness that just can’t be beat. I highly recommend this beer, I know it is not strong in alcohol, and I am a sucker for characterful lower alcohol beers, but I really like this. I am fantastically excited about this beer, I almost wish I had gotten more than two bottles, but I totally need to brew something like this (perhaps a split batch with some Brettanomyces fermentation).
Stine (1441) - Minneapolis, Minnesota, USA - JUN 20, 2008
4.6 AROMA 9/10 APPEARANCE 5/5 TASTE 9/10 PALATE 5/5 OVERALL 18/20
Bright golden sunshine with a frothy whitecap. Quieted but pungent clove aroma with a sweet, garlicky undertone. Orange zest, lemon zest, pastry dough provide sweetness and punch. Spice rack: Cumin, bitter rosemary, cinnamon, celery salt. Whiffs of honey and candied almonds fill in the body a bit. Soft, simple, and light as a feather, but brilliantly textured and colored.
Biscuity wheat malt flavor. Consistently minerally bitterness framed in the crisp calm of spicy and floral leafiness. Tastefully delicate hop presence seems confidently displayed; a firm, rustic fruit flavor of apricot and pear gently wresting away the barren qualities of spicy bitterness that at first glance seemed dominant. This fruity character may be just a touch estery, but it recalls hops more than yeast for the most part, in that zesty vein of dry bittersweetness. White cracker-crisp and doughy, honey glazed maltiness provides depth.
A certain rotten banana sugary stink wafts from a yeast dipped pour. Minerally yeasts thick and rocky. Flavor reminiscent even more of hawaiian sweetbread and pastry dough; retains a spicy touch of bitterness while melon and citrus like esters brighten it substantially. A soft glow. Still crisp and brisk, but thickened with an unimposing, basic and satiating countryside sweetness.
Medium body seems so brisk as to be barren, but a soft creamy texture consistently fills out the body. Finishes calmly with a distant sensation of pear skins, grassy bitterness, and the dustiest, most cobweb-covered hoppiness imaginable. Intricate, experiential simplicity well defined and possibly perfected here; I could literally drink this all day long and still find myself fascinated. A lovely bouquet of surprises in this fantastically visceral experience.
hellbilly (3249) - scottsdale über alles, Arizona, USA - FEB 21, 2010
4.6 AROMA 9/10 APPEARANCE 4/5 TASTE 9/10 PALATE 5/5 OVERALL 19/20
2008 avril bottle consumed 11/9/2009.
hazy pour... pale golden yellow with a wispy/soapy white head which leaves behind clingy poofs of foam and one giant ring at the lip of the glass.
initial aroma of skunky onions fades to honey, straw, flowers, peppery spice, lemony citrus, lemon leaves and that dupont stink.
the palate is full of pale malt though it is not sweet... actually, it is dry, spicy, crisp and refreshing. tons of flavor packed into this.... cinnamon, mineral water/minerals, peppery, earthy, lemon, herbs, must, honey, jasmine, lavender, vanilla and some yeasty richness. it picks up a mild bitterness as it warms while finishing dry and spicy.
it is medium bodied (considering the abv%), lively carbonated and quenching.
biere de table... perfect with food or alone... brilliant! 9/4/9/5/19/4.6
Schroppfy (2357) - Łódż, Warsaw, Poland; Michigan, Ohio, USA - JUL 9, 2008
4.5 AROMA 10/10 APPEARANCE 5/5 TASTE 8/10 PALATE 3/5 OVERALL 19/20
I love this beer. An extra from Ken, I had been looking for this one for a little while.
The aroma is so funky; slight bits of funky cheese on top of incredible grassiness, fresh and yeasty, with bright hop floweriness in spades. The aroma is just perfect - subtle and powerful at the same time. Looks gorgeous, tastes wonderfully fresh and bitter, very thirst quenching, just a light wateriness in the middle of the body but not what you might suspect. Like refreshing liquid sourdough soda with hop floweriness and bitterness all rolled in. An absolutely delightful beer. Bottled in 2008.
Glouglouburp (5867) - Montreal, Quebec, CANADA - NOV 18, 2008
4.5 AROMA 9/10 APPEARANCE 5/5 TASTE 9/10 PALATE 4/5 OVERALL 18/20
In short: A highly (very highly) drinkable tart and farmhouse Saison.
How: Bottle 750ml, brought up to Montreal by my buddy puzzl, thanks a ton Andy. Consumed fresh, a week after Andy purchased it
The look: Cloudy yellow-blonde body topped by a medium white head
In long: Nose is unmistakably Dupont, typical Dupont farmhouse character. The aroma is similar to Dupont Forest but even more intensively farmhouse. Taste brings a surprising tartness to the game with an almost Berliner-Weisse sensation. Crisp, hay, pineapples, light creamy honey, wild farmhouse yeast, . This beer combines the delicious farmhouse character of the Moinette Biologine (Forest) and the high drinkability qualities of the Dupont Vieille Provision. Probably my second favourite Dupont after Vieille Provision. Fully satisfying body, at 3.5%!!!! I can’t believe the most low scores on this one. Please people, stop sharing a 3.5% masterpiece in tasting sessions, drink the bottle that’s the only way to appreciate a beer like this. This is a fully satisfying beer, I would have never guessed 3.5%. I hereby declare Dupont Biolégère (aka Dupont Avril) the most underrated beer on ratebeer. Finally something to say at customs when I’m asked if I have anything to declare.
Crosling (1863) - Loveland, Colorado, USA - JUN 21, 2009
4.5 AROMA 9/10 APPEARANCE 5/5 TASTE 9/10 PALATE 4/5 OVERALL 18/20
Pros: Blown Away. Only Dupont could pack this much flavor and aromas in a 3.5% beer. Gorgeous rocky head. Very pure, natural and Belgian. I really need more of this. This is like a workout beer.
Cons: Not a single flaw
SamGamgee (2452) - down the whirlpool, California, USA - JUL 18, 2010
4.5 AROMA 9/10 APPEARANCE 5/5 TASTE 9/10 PALATE 4/5 OVERALL 18/20
75cl bottle from 2008. Noticing the bottle date on the cork after I bought this, I was a little apprehensive about opening this, but it was in the back of the cooler at ledgers, so I’m willing to bet that decent handling has a lot to do with how awesome this beer is, even at around two years of age. Not even a hint of skunk, thankfully. Pours a lightly hazy light gold color with a gig white head that recedes into a frothy layer and copious lace. The aroma immediately strikes me as Dupont. Their yeast is unmistakable, especially if you have brewed with it: flower petals, dried herbs, mango, papaya, red wine. Just a hint of cracked bread. Almost seductive, but subtle. The flavor is much like a lighter Vielle Provision. Dry and refreshing with a hint of herbal hops. Just a touch of light grain maltiness, and a light suggestion of residual sugar before a quenching and crisp finish. Light bodied and spritzy. This is just a phenomenal low gravity beer.
OldMrCrow (1621) - Seattle, Washington, USA - JUN 18, 2008
4.4 AROMA 8/10 APPEARANCE 4/5 TASTE 9/10 PALATE 5/5 OVERALL 18/20
UPDATED: SEP 16, 2012 Tap at Brouwers.
I hate following Flaco Alto in the ratings. :)
Makes me want to just give up and not even try to describe the damn thing. But man, this beer was something else. Certainly the best <4% ABV beer I’ve ever had, plausibly the best <5% ABV. Just the glorious funky house essence, summer fields and ah, Dupont, Dupont, Dupont flavor. Light like sparkling water but complex like Avec Les Bon Vieux, I think I’d drink nothing else (beer or any other liquid) all hot summer if this was readily available.
I had this one side by side with a draft Avec Les Bon Vieux, which on tap is one of my favorite beers of all time. I thought this would be a disaster compared to the stronger cousin. Almost the opposite; the winter beer was hot, sticky, almost heavy-handed after this refreshing zestful delight. A triumph!
750 ml bottle. Oh man, this is great stuff, confirming everything I thought after trying it on tap. Definitely the ultimate sparkling water, plenty of sulfur (the good kind, like smoke from firecrackers or friction on dried rubber, not like rotten eggs or dog farts), lovely bitter close. Splendid splendid beer.
simonbilyk (82) - Maine, USA - MAY 23, 2010
4.4 AROMA 8/10 APPEARANCE 4/5 TASTE 9/10 PALATE 4/5 OVERALL 19/20
Tastes Belgian. It has the character of a belgian blond but is more quenching. I love the fact that this is a small beer. The aroma is crisp and grainy, some definite yeast spice. Flavor is the same. Hops make their impression as a slight earthiness. Finish is thin but perfect. I have to make this! Yay beer!
awaisanen (1304) - Fond du Lac, Wisconsin, USA - JUN 20, 2008
4.3 AROMA 10/10 APPEARANCE 4/5 TASTE 8/10 PALATE 4/5 OVERALL 17/20
From a 750mL Bottle. Purchased at Hi Times Wine Cellar. Mostly transparent, pale brassy gold color with a thick layer of light, tiny
bubbled, fizzy white head. Incredibly light and clean, the saison yeast character shines through boldly - hints
of black pepper, graham cracker, and nutmeg come to mind right away. This has the perfect nose; the signature
Dupont yeast has such beautiful aromatic qualities, and this beer showcases those aspects wonderfully without any
additional spice or alcohol presence to muddle it up. While the Saison and Avec les Bons Veux are wonderful
beers, the simplicity of this really illustrates exactly how the bigger beers get to be so complex. Cinnamon and
clove, earthy, bready, and doughy. Hints of floral hops add a gentle, herbal freshness to the bouquet.
Extremely light bodied, fully carbonated mouthfeel with a dry, carbonic finish. Highly quaffable and refreshing, perfect for today’s extreme heat. Pale malt flavors mingle with notes of cardamom spice. The herbal hops come through mid-palate, leaving behind a garden fresh herbalness lingering on the palate. Finishes bone dry. Fabulous beer overall; the aroma, in particular, is mind numbing. My only complaint is in the "minerally"-ness of the flavors/palate (I’m inferring this is brewed with either really hard water of water high in carbonate). I realize that this is considered by some to be a trademark of the style, but I think the low ABV accentuates the harshness of the bitterness in the finish. While this helps enhance the dryness, I find it to overpower the yeast flavors a bit too much, bringing the flavor focus to bone dry, hoppy finish. The hints of doughy yeast spice left on my tongue are my favorite part; as it warms, this aspect begins to become more noticeable.