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RATINGS: 1255   WEIGHTED AVG: 3.78   EST. CALORIES: 216   ABV: 7.2%
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La Roja, an artisan amber ale brewed in the Flanders tradition. Deep amber with earthy caramel, spice and sour fruit notes developed through natural barrel aging. Unfiltered, unpasteurized and blended from barrels ranging in age between two and ten months. Truly an ale of distinction.

   AROMA 9/10   APPEARANCE 4/5   TASTE 8/10   PALATE 4/5   OVERALL 18/20
kane (111) - USA - MAR 5, 2005
This is a MI beer? In a blind tasting I never would of guessed this was brewed in the US until someone showed me the bottle and even then I would be sceptical. Pours a medium dark ruby color with a large slowly diminishing off-white head. Aroma is very old world: barnyard, spices, chocolate. Taste is complementary of the aroma matching the spices and chocolate very well. The yeast is omnipresent, taking you to a Belgian farmhouse. This brewery is a great discovery for me. I will have to try there other offerings.

   AROMA 8/10   APPEARANCE 5/5   TASTE 8/10   PALATE 4/5   OVERALL 18/20
DocLock (7915) - Lower Pottsgrove, Pennsylvania, USA - MAR 1, 2005
Huge thanks to BBB63 for this. Mike is an awesome trader, and he knew I’d like this one. Pours turbid ruby/orange, with big, creamy off-white head. Definite 4-5 for appearance, which I gave a 5. Aroma of caramel malt, dark fruit, some chocolate, spices, Brett. Tastes malty, Bretty, dark fruity, with finishing chocolate and hops, also big oak, bourbon, cognac, and spice. Very complex taste and aroma, very smooth, with a well carbonated palate. Just delicious. Went well with a Fuente cigar. As with the JP Bianca, more complex as it warms. In a blind taste test, you’d never know the JP beers were brewed in Michigan rather than Belgium. Never in a million years. Bravo!!!! Here’s to wild yeasts, bottle conditioning, and good old American ingenuity! Rock on, Jolly Pumpkin!!

   AROMA 8/10   APPEARANCE 4/5   TASTE 9/10   PALATE 4/5   OVERALL 17/20
TheBeerGod (5287) - Newport News, Virginia, USA - FEB 28, 2005
Bottle. Thanks to wohlfs for this! Deep copper body with a moderate tanned head. Nose is spicy and sweet. Candy sugar, alcohol soaked fruit, deep wooden notes, light barnyardy funk, creamy malts, and rum. Taste is more alcohol, spices, light fruity notes, big woody flavors, candy sugar, light earthy notes and more creamy malts. Absolute bliss! Body has a nice carbonation feel to it along with some pleasant spiciness and a fullness that is very welcoming. Ends very dry with lingering spice. Finish is spicy and sweet, again, but the spices seem dominant. Light candied fruit and raw sugar with fresh cut wood notes and malts. Light earthiness and floral notes. Nice beer! Well done American style Belgian!

   AROMA 6/10   APPEARANCE 3/5   TASTE 8/10   PALATE 4/5   OVERALL 17/20
Mangino (1027) - Mississippi, USA - FEB 27, 2005
Pours a dark red/amber color, big slightly off white bubbly head. Aroma is funky, with barnyard, and malt. Flavor is malty, lots of complex flavors going on here, not going to attempt to describe them. Sweet flavor with a dry but smooth finish. Very nice! Thanks to BBB63 for this one!

   AROMA 7/10   APPEARANCE 3/5   TASTE 9/10   PALATE 3/5   OVERALL 18/20
Sammy (8726) - Toronto, Ontario, CANADA - FEB 5, 2005
Very satisfying, thanks Wohlfs. Refreshing spices, like most Unibroues strive to be, but without their negative yeast. Reminds of a saison.Rum whiff. Well carbonated. All taste. Lots of different malts. I must try all from this brewery. Licorice, corriander, rum, bourbon, fennel, fruit. Would have again, good choice for my 700th review, ranks 75th.

   AROMA 7/10   APPEARANCE 4/5   TASTE 8/10   PALATE 4/5   OVERALL 17/20
jollyraider (252) - Los Angeles, California, USA - FEB 1, 2005
UPDATED: FEB 10, 2005 First biere de garde. Tastes red. Great burnished red/brown color. Great Belgian barnyard taste without a huge yeast presence. It’s exciting that Michigan has another talented brewery.

   AROMA 7/10   APPEARANCE 4/5   TASTE 9/10   PALATE 5/5   OVERALL 17/20
muzzlehatch (4424) - Burlington, Vermont, USA - JAN 24, 2005
750 ml bottle consumed with gusto by MartinT, tiggmtl, Rastacouere and myself. Deep, thick reddish-brown with a lasting medium head...sour, vinous, heavily barnyardy malty-thick nose...body a bit thicker than other JPs, again with an absolutely stunning soft but full mouthfeel, vinous, darkly earthy and woody. Sublime.

   AROMA 8/10   APPEARANCE 4/5   TASTE 8/10   PALATE 4/5   OVERALL 15/20
MartinT (7956) - Montreal, Quebec, CANADA - JAN 24, 2005
UPDATED: FEB 5, 2009 The Lure:
A plethora of candied fruit aging proficiently in their wise wooden barrel. Lofty, sticky foam decorates the dark amber storm. A Jolly Pumpkin aroma is always seductive it seems.

The Festivities:
Prickly caramel sweetness and oak barrel notes coalesce brilliantly, finishing off into a dry bitterness. A super clean mouthfeel allows a cranberry, red apple and white grape fruitiness and roasted malt to roam intelligently. Tart leanings emerge from the spiciness. The frothy carbonation delivers an authentic mouthfeel, as delicate oakiness develops with every sip. Quiet and understated at first approach, this is one of the rare beers which gets better and better as you slowly down the glass.

A paragon of Flemish brewing tradition seems to have popped up in Michigan, of all places!

   AROMA 8/10   APPEARANCE 4/5   TASTE 9/10   PALATE 4/5   OVERALL 17/20
tiggmtl (4548) - Vancouver, British Columbia, CANADA - JAN 24, 2005
Barnyard character is most pronounced in this one as compared to the other offerings from this brewery. Barrel aging is also noticeable with oak and vanilla tones to the nutty, earthy and musty aroma. Clear, brown/amber with decent, off-white, fine-bubbled head that recedes to lasting cover with some lacing. Strong maltiness in the very fresh fruity flavour with plenty of wood and vanilla leading up to strong bitterness in the finish. Fine-bubbled carbonation and soft texture to the medium body with some light alcohol warming. Bottle enjoyed with MartinT, muzzlehatch and Rastacouere.

   AROMA 8/10   APPEARANCE 4/5   TASTE 7/10   PALATE 4/5   OVERALL 16/20
Rastacouere (6134) - Montreal, Quebec, CANADA - JAN 24, 2005
Ruby reflects on a brown background. Nicely cloudy. Off-white cover. Earthy, musty cellar flavors comprises a generous fruitiness underneath (grapes, apples, pears). Mellow tart aspects, cloves and earthy dryness in abundance. Mellow barrel notes, possibly the most obvious of the 4 JP and definitely the driest. Cork flavors, bitter finish. Soft and elegant gentle bubbles accompany the lenghty finish. Very cohesive. I’m with Mat. That brewery has seized the meaning of crafting like no other and in the car state of all places!

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