FlacoAlto (4133) - Tucson, Arizona, USA - OCT 17, 2010
3.3 AROMA 6/10 APPEARANCE 3/5 TASTE 6/10 PALATE 3/5 OVERALL 15/20
A solid pour into my 25cl tulip glass produces an almost three-finger thick, pale tan colored head. The beer is a bright, dark gold color that shows a brilliant, perfectly clear (mechanically so even), gold hue with copper highlights when held up to the light. Interesting, in a wincing sort of way, I completely wasnít expecting that, but I actually donít know if I dislike it. The beer smells sort of funky, like a ripe, buttery cheese and a second look has me convinced that this is actually the aromas of the grapes used in this beer; it is a touch catty, somewhat like crushed, still green weeds (to messy to be just grass) and spicy like milk-weed backed by phenolic cloves, some woody pepper and a spiciness that seems characteristic of oak (is this aged in oak, I hadnít thought so). The nose on this is very, very interesting, I am still not quite sure what to think of it, but I am still intrigued.
Lightly sweet tasting at the first sip and it definitely tastes of grapes, funky Sauvignon like flavors some Gewurztraminer acidity along with notes of lime, perhaps a touch of tropical fruit, kiwi notes as well as some grassiness. This has more flavors from grapes than it does from the beer-derived ingredients. The yeast probably plays the biggest secondary role with notes of clove, some warming-spicy alcohol, a touch of ginger and an earthiness that tastes quite a bit like coriander and it also brings out much of the grape flavors noted before. Malt? I am not sure that this plays much of a role here, there is some pale malt character in the middle as well as a touch of cracker like grain, but both of these are subtle next to the expressive grape character. As the beer warms up more of the pale malt presence becomes noticeable. The body of this is not heavy considering the strength, it does have some viscosity to it and it has enough heft to be felt on the tongue; not light by any means, but also not thick or rich.
This will definitely be an interesting one to age. I am really not too sure what to think of this; it certainly is not bad, but the heavy grape focus seems a bit out of place. Despite not really liking the flavors and aromas here, they are so interesting that I am intrigued enough to keep on drinking this and figuring out what is going on; this is a fairly complex beer, it has a lot going on & it is making my head a bit fuzzy (so it canít be all that bad). In the end Iíll just have to simply call this beer an experience!
ApisAles (1575) - Greenbelt, Maryland, USA - OCT 17, 2010
3.6 AROMA 7/10 APPEARANCE 3/5 TASTE 7/10 PALATE 3/5 OVERALL 16/20
On tap at RFD in Washington DC. Orange pour with a thin jute head. Aroma is Belgian spice and grapes. Flavor is vonous some Belgian east kick. Good, not great.
patrickfannon (1241) - Philadelphia, Pennsylvania, USA - OCT 17, 2010
3 AROMA 6/10 APPEARANCE 3/5 TASTE 6/10 PALATE 3/5 OVERALL 12/20
Bottle. 24.5 oz. Pours a sandy peach orange with a thin, foamy white head. Aroma of honey, grapes, dry spices, slight pine hops, sweet tea, and some slight barley. Medium to full bodied with an overtly sweet, yet still loose and crisp mouthfeel. Very sweet in the finish, with a bit of alchol warmth and taste following through to the chest. I expected much better from Stone. Average.
fiver29 (1036) - Cleveland, Ohio, USA - OCT 17, 2010
3.1 AROMA 6/10 APPEARANCE 4/5 TASTE 5/10 PALATE 4/5 OVERALL 12/20
Bottle pours clear amber orange color with off white head. Aroma is belgian yeast, white pepper, and herbal spice. Lively carbonation on the mouthfeel. Flavor is more belgian tripel, spicy, peppery, and finishes dry. I donít get any wine notes here at all. Tastes more like a belgian tripel than anything. Just average.
TheBeerGod (5914) - Newport News, Virginia, USA - OCT 17, 2010
3.5 AROMA 7/10 APPEARANCE 4/5 TASTE 7/10 PALATE 3/5 OVERALL 14/20
Bottle. Golden amber pour with a short white head. Nose is slightly spicy, very yeasty, ripe fruit, citrus notes, candy, and light pineapple upside-down cake. Taste is very yeasty and spicy with ripe fruits, soft alcohol, candied fruit, grape skins, dried flowers, and sweet malt. Body is medium with a moderate carbonation but a strong dryness throughout. Ends with more strong yeast notes, grape skins, light white wine, dried fruit, dry flowers, sweet malt and candied notes.
dwyerpg (5422) - Las Vegas, Nevada, USA - OCT 17, 2010
4.4 AROMA 8/10 APPEARANCE 4/5 TASTE 10/10 PALATE 4/5 OVERALL 18/20
This is very good. The flavor is spicy, but with a good strong alcohol flavor. Can taste the grapes a little. Pretty tasty.
WisconsinBeer (716) - St. Paul, Minnesota, USA - OCT 16, 2010
4 AROMA 7/10 APPEARANCE 4/5 TASTE 8/10 PALATE 4/5 OVERALL 17/20
Bottle. Pours a bright golden yellow color with a few carbonation bubbles emanating from the bottom. Very little head. Very interesting. Flavor is initially light Belgian malts and slightly sugary, recedes to a very wine like grape sort of sweetness, hints of Booneís Farm, grape jolly ranchers, and just a hint of booze. Iím really digging this beer, itís definitely different than the typical same old.
Tripplebrew (778) - Saint Paul, Minnesota, USA - OCT 16, 2010
3.9 AROMA 8/10 APPEARANCE 3/5 TASTE 8/10 PALATE 4/5 OVERALL 16/20
Pours a clear honey yellow with thin white frothy head. Aroma is a mix of green grapes, tart cherry, raisin, hay. Flavor is crisp with notes of tart green grape, candi sugar, bready notes, and floral presence. Body is light and crisp with active carbonation.
tjthresh (1867) - Greenfield, Indiana, USA - OCT 16, 2010
2.9 AROMA 6/10 APPEARANCE 3/5 TASTE 5/10 PALATE 3/5 OVERALL 12/20
Pours clear amber with a bit of soap bubble white head. Thereís quite a bit of grape character here, and I donít care for it. Its giving me a bit of a headache. Some Belgian yeast in the nose. Medium, oily body. Just to much like wine for me.
Beerdrinker79 (1977) - Idaho, USA - OCT 16, 2010
4 AROMA 8/10 APPEARANCE 4/5 TASTE 7/10 PALATE 4/5 OVERALL 17/20
UPDATED: DEC 22, 2012 22 oz. bottle- Pours Belgian golden with a thin yet lively head and good lacework, aroma is coriander and oranges, very citrusy. The flavor is very sweet, orange rind, very Belgium in the taste. There is a definite wine tang to the beer, especially sauv blanc. This beer is not excellent, but you can tell it has the potential to become excellent as it ages, I am very excited to re-try this beer in the years to come. Rerate 12-22-12- appearance is decent, but is lowered by one point, goes from a 4 to a3, aroma is the same, taste is very nice, I actually think I am going to upgrade from a 7 to an 8, very nice. Palate stays, overall I think I am upgrading from a 16 to a 17, this is the first time I actuallly upgraded in the vertical series.