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on tap

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RATINGS: 1562   WEIGHTED AVG: 3.98/5   IBU: 18   EST. CALORIES: 210   ABV: 7%
La Folie, French for "the folly," is a beer steeped in New Belgium brewing tradition. This wood-aged, sour brown spends one to three years in big, oak barrels, known as foeders. And when the beer finally hits the glass, La Folie is sharp and sour, full of green apple, cherry, and plum-skin notes. Pouring a deep mahogany, the mouthfeel will get you puckering while the smooth finish will get you smiling. Not a beer for the timid, La Folie is a sour delight that will turn your tongue on its head. Find out why itís considered one of the best sour beers around.

   AROMA 8/10   APPEARANCE 4/5   TASTE 9/10   PALATE 4/5   OVERALL 18/20
frylock (1135) - Atlanta, Georgia, USA - MAY 2, 2006
Amber body with a medium white head. White grapes, pears, oak and light vinegar notes in the aroma. Very acidic, with more grapes, oak and vinegar in the flavor. Great stuff! Big thanks to rudolf for providing this bottle.

   AROMA 9/10   APPEARANCE 5/5   TASTE 10/10   PALATE 4/5   OVERALL 17/20
Bartzilla (590) - La Mesa, California, USA - MAY 1, 2006
On Tap @ Liarís Club. This stuff rocks me in many different ways, and Iím tough to rock, let me tell you. Itís like a giant glass of Sweet Tarts except itís a beer, not candy. This would be a great hangover beer. I kinda like these sour ales.

   AROMA 7/10   APPEARANCE 4/5   TASTE 7/10   PALATE 2/5   OVERALL 14/20
tennisjoel (1271) - Rochester, Minnesota, USA - APR 30, 2006
Strong vinager sour smell. Very sour taste. My first in this style. Not bad, but it takes a little getting used to. Being that this is the first sour, that is basically what I taste. I guess if sour is your thing youíll love this...for me, Iím not sure if Iíll acquire this as a favorite. Iíll let the lambic and sour fans revel over this while I indulge in other gems.

   AROMA 8/10   APPEARANCE 4/5   TASTE 7/10   PALATE 4/5   OVERALL 15/20
ElGaucho (2340) - Minnetonka, Minnesota, USA - APR 23, 2006
Bottle. Very sour and sweet aroma. Promising. Cloudy amber body with an off-white head ring. Beautiful color, nice head, no lace. Not a bad beer. I canít really tell a good flemish sour from a great one. This is nice in small quanitities. Four people shared this bottle and there was still half of it left over. An acquired taste that may not ever be acquired.

   AROMA 8/10   APPEARANCE 4/5   TASTE 7/10   PALATE 4/5   OVERALL 16/20
y0cola (361) - fremont, California, USA - APR 15, 2006
dark orange. appearance. small head aroma is of stale cherries, love and tart cherries. flavor is of tart cherries and leaves you w/ a dry mouth. spice & cinnamon in back of throat. good for a snack. palate is thick yet carbonated

   AROMA 9/10   APPEARANCE 3/5   TASTE 8/10   PALATE 4/5   OVERALL 17/20
SledgeJr (3577) - Omaha, Nebraska, USA - APR 9, 2006
UPDATED: OCT 25, 2007 On tap at the Toronado. Iím not sure that I will ever see this sold in my home state. It was delightful to find it at the Haight. Pours amber with a white head. Has the aroma of 1N Acetic Acid. This is a very very sour beer. Itís like sweet tarts sour without the sweet. No lacing as I suspect the ale actually solubilized parts of the glass that contained it. This is far closer to battery acid than anything Iíve had from NB before. Way too astringent for everyone at my table. Some even refused to taste it after smelling it. Obviously, I loved it. UPDATE 12/2006: The amazing Beertopia in Omaha now carries this in the big bottle. Iím still holding out for the kegs. UPDATE 1/2007: ON tap at the brewery hospitality house. The battery acid burn remains disturbingly strong. I can get a wisp of oak flavor out of the huge sourness. The aroma is no where as vinegar as it was at Toronado. The color is a dark auburn. Thereís still a residual chemical burn palate. If you work it, you just might get apricots in the nose. This beer could make an astringent beer cry. Iíd guess the pH is 3.7. UPDATE: New Belgium tasting at Max & Joeís Tavern on 10/18/7. Seems like it has a very fruity aroma now not unlike grapes. This is still followed by a slight nasal acid burn. Ruby dark amber in color. Nice medium-sized off white head. very wine-like today. The tartness does not seem to be as unbalanced and the beer does not come across as straight battery acid this time. Iím starting to really enjoy the intermittent oak flavors that sporatically blast through. I ease the score up one tenth of a point to 4.1 UPDATE: Falling Rock blend of La Folie at New Belgium tasting at Max & Joeís Tavern on 10/18/7. Huge carbonation and a big head. Darker than regular La Folie. Sweeter and maltier as well. The aroma is not as good as reg. and seems to be a bit toned down. The sweetness is like a spider inviting you into her web: it is super tart and very acidic. Burns the esophagus. The palate is not smooth at all. this is just like drinking vomit acid. Perhaps this needs a bit more aging?

   AROMA 7/10   APPEARANCE 4/5   TASTE 9/10   PALATE 4/5   OVERALL 17/20
leitrim65 (402) - Seattle, Washington, USA - MAR 26, 2006
Bottle number 5 of 2919. Brownish amber color with a long lasting medium tan head. Chocolate and cherries in the nose. Dry and crisp with flavors of chocolate and an ever building hit of sour cherries from start to finish. For me, different and just outstanding.

   AROMA 7/10   APPEARANCE 4/5   TASTE 7/10   PALATE 4/5   OVERALL 15/20
xproudfoot (750) - Paleolithic, Pennsylvania, USA - MAR 15, 2006
Bottle. Fizzy snap crackle pop pour - excited head. Lotsa sweet íwhiffleberryí ale aroma. Transluctent amber with eggshell head. Spritely golden honeysuckle flavor. Light, syprupy, íspecialí belgian spices. As it goes on, a note akin to grape robitussin - medicinal but grape sweet, comes out.

   AROMA 10/10   APPEARANCE 4/5   TASTE 9/10   PALATE 5/5   OVERALL 20/20
Shag (2738) - Chattanooga, Tennessee, USA - MAR 5, 2006
UPDATED: JUN 26, 2007 Pucker up! A dark amber appearance with a large head. The aroma consists of vinegar, cherries, and oak. The flavor is really really sour with some funk, vinegar, cherries, sour apples. The mouthfeel is quite carbonated. Damn this was good!

   AROMA 10/10   APPEARANCE 2/5   TASTE 8/10   PALATE 5/5   OVERALL 18/20
Goldorak (438) - Montreal, Quebec, CANADA - MAR 5, 2006
Sampled at the "letís piss off Clark" tasting, big thanks to MartinT for supplying this rarity

Brownish caramel, with just a thin head that tapered off quite quickly.
That great balsamic vinegar aroma was present, but with an extra spicy cinnamon in a Quelquechose kind of way, with a touch of musk and just enough alcohol to make me think I was smelling an old bottle of perfume I found in some dusty attic. Marvelous!
Good carbonation, the wood doesnít take center stage, it plays more of a backup role for the solid body and sour cherry flavors to glimmer in the spotlight. I donít know if itís the type of wood used for his barrels or just the aging process that wasnít as pronounced as most others (that would be my fist guess), but the brewer seems to have determined the perfect combination in order to get the smooth oaky flavors from the wood yet without sacrificing body and soul to get it, giving la Folie a more complex and satisfying taste as youíll ever find in Flanders Reds/Flemish sours.

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