JasonG (776) - Salt Lake City, Utah, USA - JAN 11, 2006
4.2 AROMA 9/10 APPEARANCE 4/5 TASTE 7/10 PALATE 4/5 OVERALL 18/20
Light brown/amber color with smallish light tan head. Aroma defintely has some funk, lots of bretty character, with wet leather, horse hair, sharp lactic acid tangyness, hints of vanilla, cherry, apricot, oak, light caramel. Flavor is tart, sharp, acidic, hint of vanilla, caramel, cherries, and a faint note of alcohol. Finish is slightly sour, smooth, with the slightest hint of bitterness, and very dry. I felt the flavor could have had a bit more depth, but that is truly being a nitpick. A fantastic brew overall. A true accomplishment.
DavidP (1747) - Milwaukee, Wisconsin, USA - JAN 9, 2006
4.2 AROMA 8/10 APPEARANCE 3/5 TASTE 9/10 PALATE 3/5 OVERALL 19/20
6/05 bottle. Hazy red-amber body, thin white bubbly head. Ripe sweet cherry aroma with cinnamon-laced apple pie and an acidic linger. When I first started sipping on this guy I thought it was a simplistic cherry kriek but with patience it gets better. The biggest flavor component to me is bready yeast followed by sweet cherry skins, vanilla? and a chocolately malt pushed waay into the background. As with the aroma thereís an acidic aura over the whole flavor. Finishes with tart cherry skin and citric acid. Bubbly but medium-strength mouthfeel that leaves a bit of satisfying sweet stickiness on the tongue. The beer with the cherries+barrels is pretty nice but the special yeasts do a fantastic job of offsetting the sweetness, and not with too much tartness/acidity! This certainly isnít some bombastic Cantillon, this stuff has restraint.
This is a special beer exhibiting the best American utilization of Belgian bugs that Iíve seen. Great job!
sprinkle (114) - Arcadia, Michigan, USA - JAN 8, 2006
4.2 AROMA 8/10 APPEARANCE 4/5 TASTE 8/10 PALATE 5/5 OVERALL 17/20
Deep orange/gold and hazy in color. Decent head and quickly fading lace. Great nose of wet horse blanket, but not as big as Cantillon, notes of fruit, slight vanilla and oak. Dances on your tongue, this beer has alot of finesse, sour upfront but very well balanced with malts, cherries, oak and you can feel the tannins glide over your tongue. I thought this was lacking in finish but the more I sip on it, the more complex this beer gets, and its more of a silky finish.
jfm (1724) - Holbśk, DENMARK - JAN 7, 2006
2.5 AROMA 4/10 APPEARANCE 2/5 TASTE 6/10 PALATE 3/5 OVERALL 10/20
Bottle. Hazy brown color with a beige head. Light cherry notes on a light sour body.
Saarlander (1686) - Saarlouis, GERMANY - JAN 7, 2006
4.6 AROMA 9/10 APPEARANCE 4/5 TASTE 9/10 PALATE 5/5 OVERALL 19/20
Ok, simply my favorite RR brew Iíve had. Iím a fan of red wine, and the character of this one fits to a tee. Woody, tannic, along with a nice good old beer flavor. A bit acidic, but it fits perfectly. Fruit is there too, just a great beer, the future looks good for Russian River! Thanks Vinnie!
matta (1140) - Tampa, Florida, USA - JAN 5, 2006
4.2 AROMA 8/10 APPEARANCE 4/5 TASTE 8/10 PALATE 4/5 OVERALL 18/20
Many thanks to Foolish_Mortal and herbjones for sending me bottles of this brilliant elixir!
Pours a brilliant cherry and rusty orange/brown body. A wispy cap of ivory foam sits atop. The aroma is raw yet tantric. Some sincere notes of oak, aged balsamic, sour cherries, leather, pressed red apples, and green grapes. The flavor reveals a wonderfully rounded sourness. The cherries stand out a bit more and the yeast presents itself with a wild doughy flavor, yet there is a biscuity malt backbone if you search for it. The palate is wonderful and the beer is set of with a sparkly champagne like effervescence. This is craftsmanship at itís finest! A very enjoyable beer that never hits too wild or sour!
Lubiere (10438) - Ottawa, Ontario, CANADA - JAN 4, 2006
3.8 AROMA 8/10 APPEARANCE 3/5 TASTE 8/10 PALATE 4/5 OVERALL 15/20
Tasted at Belgium Comes to Cooperstown, July 16, 2005. Lightly hazed red amber ale with a thin white head. Light grainy maqlt with sour cherry notes. Slightly sour cherries in malt, with wonderful freshly grinded cherries. An excellent rendition of a flemmish sour. Mmmm...
Schroppfy (2360) - Łůdż, Warsaw, Poland; Michigan, Ohio, USA - DEC 29, 2005
4.7 AROMA 10/10 APPEARANCE 5/5 TASTE 8/10 PALATE 5/5 OVERALL 19/20
UPDATED: JAN 20, 2008 Rerate: Batch 002. This is one of the most balanced, finest examples of an American wild ale there can be. Masterful in the bod, the balanced sourness and sweetness, the amount of brett is just right (makes you sweat a little bit on the brow). Unbelievable beer. Let it settle before drinking and get a clear pour first! Then mix in the dregs of the bottle later. Wow. A masterpiece. Rerate - Batch 001: Had a bottle all to myself, with a very clear initial pour. The fruitiness here, earthy and wet and fresh, is undeniable. The leathery tannin quality is superb, and balanced by just the right acidity. This beer is a masterpiece, as is Temptation. Total score rises from 4.3 to this, mostly on the strength of the aroma. Original - Batch 001: The sourness was subdued and wonderful soft wood (not harshly oak) flavors compete here for your attention. Very smooth, and it is absolutely true that there is no easily distinguishable sweet/sour border. Lush in the mouth. Peppery flavors too. Aroma more subtle than expected. Great, great beer. Thanks to JSturm for opening this up a b-day beer (my own are on the way!).
JCapriotti (1379) - Milwaukee, Wisconsin, USA - DEC 27, 2005
4.3 AROMA 8/10 APPEARANCE 4/5 TASTE 8/10 PALATE 5/5 OVERALL 18/20
Bottle thanks to Sick_boy. Hazy ruby brown color. Frothy off-white head. Funky cherry aroma, sweet grape skin tannins. The funky Brettanomyces definitely comes through with the barnyard. It smells similar to a gueuze, but boy the flavor isnít the same. Its very smooth and well melded. Its hard to tell where the sweet starts and the sour ends. Some lactic character and Grenadine in there. Also cork-soaked grapefruit hops. Finishes with a light malt sweet caramel character and seven grain crackers, combined with grape skins. It does seem like it is missing something though... its a great beer, but could be a bit bigger. Still, it is incredibly balanced and fullfilling. Yeah, I lied... though I still think it could be "bigger", its still something great and something I could enjoy a lot of.
Sickboy282 (1115) - San Diego, California, USA - DEC 20, 2005
4.1 AROMA 8/10 APPEARANCE 4/5 TASTE 8/10 PALATE 5/5 OVERALL 16/20
UPDATED: APR 2, 2009 TAP---ohhhhh man .....this is a beauty..... very similar to cuvee de tomme without the alcohol. Very similar flavors. I was drinking a few stronger ales before and thought this was a little light, but as it warmed up, it was very nice. The yeast wasnít as dominant as say a geueze, with a light funk funk lingering, and more of a brown Belgian than an experimental brew like cuvee. still......a treat.