kramer (4355) - Sunbury, Pennsylvania, USA - APR 19, 2008
3.5 AROMA 7/10 APPEARANCE 3/5 TASTE 7/10 PALATE 3/5 OVERALL 15/20
25 oz bottle, shared by CharlesDarwin. Pours a cloudy dark amber body with a small fizzy off-white head that faded fairly quickly. The nose is both tart and sweet at the same time, just a little acidity with a bigger backdrop of fruity caramel malt. The flavor is moderately sour and funky with a slightly biting acidity over heavy fruity malt. some light oak tannins throughout. Leaves a lingering sticky sweet caramel flavor that isnít quite balanced with the sourness. Mouthfeel is fairly thick with a good bit of stickiness. Nice soft carbonation. Tasty, but indeed an odd beer.
auerbrau (3079) - Peace Dale, Rhode Island, USA - APR 6, 2008
3.6 AROMA 7/10 APPEARANCE 4/5 TASTE 7/10 PALATE 3/5 OVERALL 15/20
750mL Bottle. A distinct caramel nose, backed with a light and confusing run of sour acidity, sweetness and faint oxidation. Pours a reddish caramel, with paler corners and a whitish rim. Flavor is interesting. Tangy and yet with toffee and darker malts. Thereís a density of heavier sugar magnitude and coffees. This conflicts with the characteristic flemish sour type acid. No acetic. But, this is like two beers mixed together. The heavy residual sugars donít blend well with the acid. Chewy. Not unclean, or off, just a weird combination of malt bill and sourness. The individual flavors are nice, but donít blend well. For a Sour Ale, itís a pretty good Barleywine. Thanks Sean for supplying this rare sour!
kmweaver (3200) - Petaluma, California, USA - APR 5, 2008
2.8 AROMA 6/10 APPEARANCE 3/5 TASTE 5/10 PALATE 3/5 OVERALL 11/20
750mL bottle, courtesy of CharlesDarwin. Thanks, Tom! Pours a murky, auburn-brown color; thin, light tan head with patchy lacing. Lots of caramel, oxidation, sticky red fruits and minimal tartness in the aroma. Kind of an odd beast. Sharp, odd citrus at the front of the mouth; medium mouthfeel: lots of red fruits, caramel, and average carbonation overall; the citrus and overripe fruit is pretty off-putting overall; odd, acrid stuff, pretty much. Medium finish, showing caramel, overripe red fruits, and sugar.
wickedpete (634) - Lexington Park, Maryland, USA - APR 5, 2008
3.4 AROMA 7/10 APPEARANCE 4/5 TASTE 6/10 PALATE 4/5 OVERALL 13/20
Thanks to Tom for this one. Cloudy brown body. Caramel sweet aroma. Sour lactic flavor with a caramel backbone. Sour finish.
johnadam2002 (529) - Hainesport, New Jersey, USA - JAN 6, 2008
3.1 AROMA 6/10 APPEARANCE 3/5 TASTE 6/10 PALATE 3/5 OVERALL 13/20
Poured murky brown with a little off white head. Aroma of sour fruit and sweet malt. Started off with some sour fruit flavors but that quickly subsided into a harsher sweet malt. Very weird but still drinkable. I was hoping for a sour and got sweet instead.
Rastacouere (6103) - Montreal, Quebec, CANADA - DEC 3, 2007
3.5 AROMA 7/10 APPEARANCE 3/5 TASTE 7/10 PALATE 3/5 OVERALL 15/20
Caramel coloured and topped by an off-white cover that resumes to a ring. Funny smell really, it combines a certain toasty, Vienna maltiness that hints at residual sugars with cobwebby, old book shelves reminding musty yeast flavours. In retronasal, we feel.. mushrooms! And rather intensely. A certain sourness manages to sneak in, but funkiness is mostly where itís happening. Nevertheless, some woody character sneaks in, in the shape of leafy and branches, herbal astringency. Not bad at all.
FlacoAlto (3676) - Tucson, Arizona, USA - DEC 3, 2007
3.1 AROMA 6/10 APPEARANCE 4/5 TASTE 6/10 PALATE 4/5 OVERALL 11/20
Bottle 173/424; Sampled December 2007
Pours with a frothy, initially three-finger thick, amber tinged, tan colored head that sits on top of a dark, concentrated amber colored beer that shows a somewhat hazy, dark cranberry red color when held up to the light. As I pour a lightly moldy, almost blue cheese mold, aroma lightly touches my nose. Upon closer inspection the beer smells quite sweet and fruity; it has a mix of cherry, raisin, tamarind and oxidized malt aromas to it. Lightly tart smelling, with on oak-like aroma reminiscent of vanillin, a touch of butterscotch and some spicy oak character that combines with a touch of alcohol to give this a bit of warming. There is definitely quite a bit of oak character here (it is inescapable once I place it) and it even adds a sort of nutty, almond essence like character and a touch of coconut to the aroma. An interesting aroma, though it is a bit too oak dominated for my nose.
Fairly dry tasting, but it has quite a bit more fullness to it than the dryness would suggest. Oak tannins seem to contributed to the soft creamy mouthfeel that this beer has. The oak definitely plays the leading role in the flavor as well with notes of vanillin, and butter-like oak flavors as well as the velvety textured tannins / wood extracts mentioned earlier. This is definitely tart, though not overly so; a light sourness picks up towards the end of each sip. It is hard to really get at the sour / funky flavors of this brew, the oak flavors are just a bit too dominating. Still even with that, it seems that this beer does not have nearly as much character / funk / sourness as one would expect in a good example of this style. At times the oak character seems to contribute bourbon like notes (that characteristic mix of vanillin, spice and butterscotch). At the front of each sip, before the oak really kicks in, notes of tamarind, leathery cherry and an unsweetened raisin flavor.
This is really an interesting beer, I would have love to have had the one without the oak character. I would have liked to have experienced the actual funk that was in the brew, without the overwhelming oak. As is, this seems like a surprisingly bland, dark, sour ale (at the least I would expect a lot more funkiness and an ample malt depth / complexity). Truthfully the oak here is not at outlandish levels, it is a bit too much for this particular brew, but as an example of oak extract this one is fairly drinkable.
Ungstrup (27643) - Citizen of the universe, DENMARK - NOV 23, 2007
3.1 AROMA 6/10 APPEARANCE 4/5 TASTE 6/10 PALATE 3/5 OVERALL 12/20
Bottled. An amber beer with a thin brown head. The aroma is sweet malty combined with notes of caramel and berries, with a slight acidic note lying in the back ground. The flavor is acidic malty with notes of over ripe fruits, dusty hops, and oxidation, leading to a dry and slightly alcoholic finish.
CaptainCougar (7129) - Columbia, Maryland, USA - NOV 18, 2007
3.9 AROMA 8/10 APPEARANCE 4/5 TASTE 8/10 PALATE 4/5 OVERALL 15/20
Bottle at the RBSG grand tasting on 6/23/07: Pours a transparent dark copper bronze with a frothy, spotty-lacing white head. Aroma of toasty sweet caramel malt with a hint of faint cherry tartness and bourbon oak. Body starts fairly full and caramely malty sweet with a big tart cherry balance before a slightly thinner, bittersweet tart lightly oaky finish. A nice, complex beer.
mkobes (2138) - paramus, New Jersey, USA - NOV 14, 2007
3.7 AROMA 7/10 APPEARANCE 4/5 TASTE 7/10 PALATE 4/5 OVERALL 15/20
Bottle. Deep orange in color with no head. Fruity cherry aroma. Hoppy notes. Malty fruity flavor. Cherry, woody yeasty notes. Sour. Medium bodied. Finish is bitter. Decent beer.