beerbuzzmontreal (3488) - Montreal, Quebec, CANADA - JAN 21, 2008
3.3 AROMA 7/10 APPEARANCE 3/5 TASTE 6/10 PALATE 3/5 OVERALL 14/20
Bottle courtesy of Jimbowood. Pours a murky dark brown color with a thin white head. Aroma of leather, chocolate, roasted malt and bubble-gum. Flavor of oak, leather, chocolate, roasted malt and bubble-gum with a very dry finish. Interesting, but Iím used to experience more pleasure when drinking a Jolly Pumpkin.
csbosox (1229) - Prairie Village, Kansas, USA - JAN 20, 2008
3.7 AROMA 7/10 APPEARANCE 3/5 TASTE 7/10 PALATE 4/5 OVERALL 16/20
UPDATED: JUL 4, 2008 Batch 262,263 750ml bottle. Bought the first day it was available in Kansas. This was one on my want list one day and I can buy it locally the next day? Thanks Jolly Pumpkin! Bottles been sitting in the 47į cellar and Iím sitting in a basement only moderately warmer. All is good though, I have the small heater on, a live "Iron & Wine/Calexico" concert on the radio, and a small wide brimmed snifter in front of me awaiting the beer.
The aroma is all over the place, one sniff is all yeast and vanilla and the next it citrusy, tart and earthy. There is maybe a of roast far in the back, but maybe it is my eyes that are "smelling" it. The color is dark brown, with maroon edges and bordering on black in the middle. A smallish khaki head. Moderately active carbonation. Initial taste is spicy and peppery with a nice tartness and some light citrus followed by herbal/woody/earthy flavors as well as, seemingly, a chalky flavor present possibly relating to the light burnt/roast finish? There are also some brett and some souring bugs characteristics to the beer. Just like the regular Bam Biere, this one is complex but subdued. Nothing is overpowering, which is a good thing, but I do find the light roast notes seemingly add a hint of astringency that an already uber-atttenuated beer with a fair amount of hops and sourness canít really support. The roast taste doesnít seem to mesh with the other flavors in my opinion, but these are merely small qualms. The fact of the matter is this an incredibly rich and flavorful session beer! At 4.3% this beer is lean and packs a punch.
jrob21 (2928) - Atlanta, Georgia, USA - JAN 19, 2008
3.7 AROMA 8/10 APPEARANCE 4/5 TASTE 7/10 PALATE 3/5 OVERALL 15/20
Pours a cloudy reddish/brown color with an offwhite head that doesnít quit. The aroma has some funky cheese and yeast characteristics. Flavor is slightly sweet. The carbonation and sourness give this a unique texture. The finish is sour again and medium bodied. Pretty nice. Thanks to jtw.
Cornfield (5570) - Oak Forest, Illinois, USA - JAN 18, 2008
3.8 AROMA 8/10 APPEARANCE 3/5 TASTE 8/10 PALATE 3/5 OVERALL 16/20
750ml bottle with a "BATCH 250" label slapped on it: Iíve gotta say, after the bitter disappointment of JPís Bam Biere, this was a welcome taste. It pours a slightly hazed dark chestnut body with a sbustantial creamy beige head that laces nicely. It has an aroma of sour flowers, zest of lemon, crabapples, pepper, and dusty malt. Nice, tart, and funky flavor, combining all elements of the nose along with a floral & grassy bitterness and a touch of old wood. The finish is tart, bitter, dry, and refreshing. Nice.
<font size=-4><a href=http://www.ratebeer.com/Places/ShowPlace.asp? Wine & Spirits, Downers Grove, IL<font size=-1>
FlacoAlto (3849) - Tucson, Arizona, USA - JAN 15, 2008
3.3 AROMA 7/10 APPEARANCE 4/5 TASTE 6/10 PALATE 3/5 OVERALL 13/20
750ml bottle, Batch 250; Sampled January 2008
This is definitely a funky brew, even as I pour this it smells of pronounced funk. The beer pours with a four-finger thick, slightly brown tinged, light tan colored head that leaves a nice lacing patter on the sides of my glass as it slowly recedes. The beer is an opaque, murky mix of dark amber and concentrated brown hues, but shows an almost clear, bright ruby color when held up to the light. Aromas of tart cherries, lemon zest and perhaps some pear provide a counterpoint to more aggressive enteric notes, a piquant dusting of woody black pepper and an earthy, musty, slightly rotting woody note (a big part of the overall aroma). The enteric notes are more earthy and fungal in quality than like baby diapers (which I found heavily in my last bottle of this). A backdrop of malt provides a touch of toasted aromatics, some notes of cocoa in the finish and a solid soda cracker maltiness. An extremely complex and funky aroma; it is characterful enough to keep me quite interested and, while not nearly as acidic, with its added rich malt character would give many a Lambic a go in the complexity compartment.
Very light, almost water-like in its heft, it does have some palate presence though after each sip. Extremely dry and lightly tart, which when coupled with the lightness, makes for a very refreshing brew. Flavors of tart pears, dusty cocoa powder, lactic sourness, slightly astringent lightly burnt grain husks, toasted grain and definite woody mushroom like flavors. This is quite carbonated, which, in combination with some of the carbonation notes, provides a sharp peppery carbonic bite. The finish and palate presence mainly consists of a lactic note combined with a bit of dark malt astringency.
This is much better than the first time I tried this, but it still does not have the finesse or quality of the regular Bam. It is a touch simplistic in flavor some how and I find the mix of lactic tartness and astringent burnt grain huskiness a bit distracting at times, but this is still a nice beer.
750ml bottle from the MJ Rare Beer Club
The beer sits in my glass a hazy, milk-chocolate brown color and is topped by a minimal tan colored head. The aroma is immediately distinguished by its aroma of fresh, yet quite soiled, baby diapers. There is a slight sour note to the aroma as well, and this seems to clash with a roasted, dark malt character. But in the end it all comes back to the soiled diapers, it is quite striking and a huge turnoff at these levels (sometimes get this in Lambic typically from enterobacteria, but not at these levels).
The taste is quite funky, definitely leaning towards baby diapers again. Thankfully the diaper is much reduced in the flavor. The finish has a malt driven chocolate note, and a bit more of the diaper note intermingled in. The dirty diaper note does seem to die down a bit with time, but it never leaves entirely. The beer is very light bodied (just like the regular Bam), but for some reason it does not work nearly as well here; The funk and the darker malt notes really seem to need a touch more body and mouthfeel as a counterbalance.
The flavor of this beer is really quite complex (funk, sour, dark malt & fruit), but in the end I canít quite get past the fresh newborn-baby poo. This was bound to happen with Jolly Pumpkinís brewing methods, and is even somewhat expected. Hopefully not all of the bottles of this brew are this funky (perhaps open fermentation in the warmer months would be the culprit). Iíll definitely seek out some more bottles of this, and if those are not significantly improved, perhaps the next batch would be much better. This is a beer I really want to work, as a darker example at the quality level of the regular Bam would be truly incredible.
Pigfoot (2268) - Minneapolis, Minnesota, USA - JAN 15, 2008
3.5 AROMA 6/10 APPEARANCE 3/5 TASTE 7/10 PALATE 4/5 OVERALL 15/20
Dark brown color, cola-like, with a slim whitish head.
Sweet aroma, cola, again, maple, then a kick off spice...vanilla, anise, pepper, ...others?...candi sugar...brown sugar?
Taste: smooth entry on the palate, thereís the buzz and pop, the sweet and the spicy, mixed with the dark. A bit light on the tongue and in the body, but thatís what the saison is, of course. Very drinkable, if lacking in finish. Finishes quickly, but it urges you into another drink. Goes down well, and might make a fine match with dinner, particularly a meat dish, turkey or other poultry, games, etc. Might even work with pasta, heartier vegetarian fare.
Donít think this is a brew I would return to again, doesnít fit in with the ones that please me most, just for drinking, but I find it recommendable. Tastes good, drinks well...try one with friends and food!
sloth (2636) - Ceciltucky, Co., Maryland, USA - JAN 14, 2008
3.4 AROMA 7/10 APPEARANCE 4/5 TASTE 7/10 PALATE 3/5 OVERALL 13/20
Large offwhite head that lasts with a thin lacing. Deep amber hued ale. Nose is soft spices, fruity, apples, light funk and yeasts. Body is lightly medium, overly carbonated and fairly dry on the palate. Gentle brett notes, faint chocolate, some wet leather, lightly earthy tones, light fruitiness, co2 and a little musty. Dry, lightly tart finish. Carbonation settles out after a bit of breathing making it alot more drinkable. Thanks to eaglefan for sharing.
eaglefan538 (2939) - Wilmington, Delaware, USA - JAN 12, 2008
3.4 AROMA 7/10 APPEARANCE 4/5 TASTE 6/10 PALATE 3/5 OVERALL 14/20
750ml bottle courtesy of CaptainCougar. Pour displayed a rather enormous head, lots of spritzy carbonation, oodles of bubbles and a never-subsiding head (almost annoyingly so). The aroma was amber-saison like, some light caramel notes, but firm bret character and some yeast. Flavor followed suit, the dark malts sort of distinguishing this from other Saisons, almost a dry rye-like character, spicing somewhat light. Mouthfeel was incredibly light and dry, probably both magnified by the ridiculous carbonation level. This thing has more potential with a little more malt and some less carbonation. Thanks to Tom for this opportunity, a JP I canít get in my area, fun stuff.
jasonlends (15) - Louisville, Kentucky, USA - JAN 11, 2008
2.9 AROMA 5/10 APPEARANCE 5/5 TASTE 5/10 PALATE 3/5 OVERALL 11/20
Pours a deep brownish red. Huge foamy head with great retention a slight lacing. Aroma is is tart a little fruity and a little funk mixed in. Flavor is much the same. It is refreshing, but not very interesting. The body is pretty thin and the finish is clean. I like the bam biere much better for some reason.
Walkowiak (21) - Northville, Michigan, USA - JAN 11, 2008
3.9 AROMA 8/10 APPEARANCE 3/5 TASTE 8/10 PALATE 3/5 OVERALL 17/20
Bottle. Pours dark brown with a thick, pillowy head. Aroma is unique with a sweet funkiness. It has a very tasty sour flavor with a bit of bitterness. It tastes dry and has a medium-high carbonation. Medium mouthfeel. I really like this beer.