KickInChalice (860) - Chicago, Illinois, USA - FEB 5, 2013
4.5 AROMA 9/10 APPEARANCE 4/5 TASTE 9/10 PALATE 4/5 OVERALL 19/20
Poured from a 750 mL bottle into a snifter. From notes.
I have a ton of anticipation going into this bottle. It is the beer that I have been wanting to try ever since I seriously got into craft beer, and now I am hoping it was worth the wait.
Isabelle pours a gorgeous, full tangerine color. Each successive pour is a little bit cloudier, due to all of the residue in the bottle at this point. There is a small, off-white head that pretty much disappears right away. A few stray bubbles linger.
The aroma gives my nose a full blast of barnyard funk, with some hay and grass. Just a little bit of white grape skin adds a fruit of fruit character to the smell. A acetic sourness gives a slight burn as it enters my nostrils.
Given how much time it has had to develop, I am impressed with how balanced the flavor is. It is definitely sour, but in quite a good way I am not overwhelmed with how sour the flavor is. A bit of sweet apricot, lemon, and grass are all present up front. As it turns sour, a lemony tartness turns to a slight acetic vinegar flavor.
There is a nice smoothness to the body that comes at least partially from the time it spent aging in the bottle, but the body did not suffer. American sours have a tendency to fall off and lose their body if they have been aged too long, and Isabelle shows no signs of doing that. The carbonation is light, but sufficient. The balanced acidity through most of the sip is accentuated by the acetic finish, which is great.
Overall this beer did everything it could to live up to my expectations. Too often the beers we spend the most time chasing cannot possibly live up to impossible standards we set for them, but Isabelle was worth the effort. Aside from the feeling of joy of tracking down a beer I wanted to try so badly, I was simply impressed by the beer and how well it is holding up.
jcartamdg (1593) - Spring Hill, Florida, USA - JAN 10, 2013
4.7 AROMA 10/10 APPEARANCE 4/5 TASTE 10/10 PALATE 4/5 OVERALL 19/20
Pours a milky gold with no head. Aroma of oak, lacto, tobacco and citrus. Taste is a tobacco sour, lemon and vinegar. Very sour and very good.
---Rated via Beer Buddy for iPhone
blklab2007 (1860) - Connecticut, USA - DEC 24, 2012
4.5 AROMA 8/10 APPEARANCE 4/5 TASTE 9/10 PALATE 4/5 OVERALL 20/20
Bottle corked and caged that has been sitting awaiting this day for some time even in my possession. Huge thanks to iowaherkeye for sending this my way back in the day! Pour has a golden orange color and some initial white foam that fell right away. The first glass right away had a nice light carbonation though later pours fell off quickly. Aroma is American Geuze all the way. Mellow funk, dry citrus, lower acidity, faint white grape skins, fruit touches, bretty yeast, and an alluring sweet poke on the end. She is still great and mighty though I can imagine her juiciness when young and ripe. Mouth feel is light and on the initial glass there was light carbonation but it really struggled to retain it for very long. Flavor does bring more acidity than expected, dry citrus rind, countering fruit, peach hits, white grape skin, oak, and yeast. Really spectacular for the age on this now with a very drinkable level of acidity. I sit enjoying this great beer on Christmas eve with a light snow falling outside for rating #1500 and am reminded why I continue to enjoy rating and the great memories this hobby has given me. Cheers!
UDBeernut (1411) - Near Buffalo, New York, USA - DEC 2, 2012
4.2 AROMA 8/10 APPEARANCE 4/5 TASTE 9/10 PALATE 4/5 OVERALL 17/20
First Bottle at the BA Buffalo bottle share. Pours hazy golden with a white head with light lacing. Nose is all Brett. Puckering tartness slams the palate, apple and pears on the finish. Body is light and quick to consume. One of the many highlights of the night.
crosamich (431) - Twin Falls, Idaho, USA - NOV 29, 2012
4.4 AROMA 8/10 APPEARANCE 4/5 TASTE 9/10 PALATE 5/5 OVERALL 18/20
a bit horsey, more funk than I remember from 2 yrs ago. Citrus, apple, apricot, lemon. holding up pretty well. I remember writing hay in my notes years ago but that seems to have faded now.
crossovert (6119) - Illinois, USA - OCT 28, 2012
4.3 AROMA 9/10 APPEARANCE 4/5 TASTE 8/10 PALATE 4/5 OVERALL 18/20
Complex sourness. Dry tartness. Waves of sour and slight funk notes tickle the tongue.
McGrupp612 (139) - Pennsylvania, USA - OCT 8, 2012
4.3 AROMA 9/10 APPEARANCE 5/5 TASTE 9/10 PALATE 4/5 OVERALL 16/20
Deep gold, small white head. Funky aroma, grape, lemon slight vinegar. Flavor is better, very funky and lemony. Mild tartness, with a little vinegar. Light carbonation. This is great, the most funk from an American wild that Iíve had.
xscottypx (104) - Missouri, USA - SEP 9, 2012
4.5 AROMA 9/10 APPEARANCE 4/5 TASTE 9/10 PALATE 4/5 OVERALL 19/20
thar she blows! tried this like 3-4 years ago but never reviewed it, i do not think i was even reviewing back then. so, finally.... i get to tag this one. poured a light golden yellow with light white head. nose was fruity, complex, light sour lemon with blends of citrus. pretty tart up front, complex fruits with ample sourness. light oak through out. very gueuze like although a bit sweeter. some cheese deep in the back. fruity finish. light carbonation, sticky and sweet. semi dry finish. overall, blown away. exceeded all my expectations.
Dunt (259) - Illinois, USA - AUG 26, 2012
4.1 AROMA 9/10 APPEARANCE 4/5 TASTE 8/10 PALATE 3/5 OVERALL 17/20
Bottle provided by Blake for our mini-whale tasting on sunday. Isabelle is a cloudy tangerine color and with no head formation on the pour. The beer is still. Nose opens up with white grapes, mineral, some light vinegar notes, oak, and a decent amount of funk. The taste follows the nose. A lot of white grape character, especially white grape skin. There is some lemon rind in the vein of a traditional lambic and some light vinegar again. Light mouthfeel, no carbonation, some moderate to heavier acidity, and a moderate finish. Top notch American wild and is still holding up very well. I can definitely see this dropping off sometime in the near future, but Iíve had it twice this year and it was excellent both times.
readbaron (78) - Chicago, Illinois, USA - AUG 26, 2012
4.2 AROMA 9/10 APPEARANCE 4/5 TASTE 8/10 PALATE 4/5 OVERALL 17/20
Pours out a hazy, yellow orange. Nose is tart and funky. Smells like a lost abbey sour - slight acetone, lemon. Taste is tart, crisp, refreshing. Itís balanced and lovely. Lives up to its billing of one of the best American sours.