Jimthechap (1570) - Christchurch, NEW ZEALAND - JAN 19, 2011
3.7 AROMA 8/10 APPEARANCE 3/5 TASTE 8/10 PALATE 3/5 OVERALL 15/20
UPDATED: DEC 1, 2013 My beloved purchased this beer for me (bless her) and I kept it in the dark for about a year. There’s only one ’if only’ about this, and that is I wish I had tried it a wee bit younger so that I could make an accurate comparison. The matured article is sublime.
The plumminess is there in a lovely fruity, spiciness that, while dominating most of the other flavours, lets the malt shine through. The malt is lovely and soft, caramelly and sweet. The beer itself was a picture to look at. A soft, rocky head. Golden and a full, creamy mouthfeel. I’ll remember this beer. (4.6/5)
Ah, time you fickle mistress. The Wild Plum Ale I had tonight was charming enough but not really up to the standard of its predecessor. Was it the year in the bottle I gave the original? Who knows. This one is still lovely though, just not the rock star of old.
grapengrain (125) - Havelock North, NEW ZEALAND - MAY 25, 2010
3 AROMA 5/10 APPEARANCE 2/5 TASTE 6/10 PALATE 4/5 OVERALL 13/20
I have drunk this beer religiously over its past three releases and I have to say that this is the most exciting so far (2010) – there is more residual sugar (or at least the illusion of it) which brings out the ripe plum notes. All in all an exciting, crisp, mildly hoppy golden ale.
highlandlad (1413) - Blue Mountains, AUSTRALIA - AUG 21, 2009
3.8 AROMA 8/10 APPEARANCE 3/5 TASTE 8/10 PALATE 4/5 OVERALL 15/20
A lovely curiosity from New Zealand. This fruit beer using wild plums from the brewer’s family farm is almost lambic in character. It’s a hazy peachy-orange colour with a thin scattering of suds. Really nice musky, tart aroma - almost Asian in feel - apple blossom perhaps. Lots of crisp, green-apple acids, honey, caramel chews and a whiff of car vinyl. Almost cider-like in its aroma. Quenching palate, very dry in the finish, which suits the style perfectly. In the mouth, maraschino cherries, plums, faint toffee malts and a hint of sherry-like alcohol. Sour, mouth-watering finish. This is good, adventurous brewing. I could drink a lot of this. Well done. (330ml bottle courtesy of Yalnikim - thanks for the opportunity to try this unusual NZ treat)
DuffMan (6554) - the land of bitumen, beef & beer, Alberta, CANADA - JUN 15, 2009
3.4 AROMA 7/10 APPEARANCE 2/5 TASTE 7/10 PALATE 3/5 OVERALL 15/20
Small bottle with handsome paper wrapping and waxed cap. Pours a hazy red-orange with a white head that quickly expires. Genuine fruit aroma that calls to mind crabapples and feijoa, with some underlying reedy malts. Nice genuine fruit flavours as well, with plum being more evident here than in the aroma. There is mild underlying spiciness and a slightly tart dryness in the finish. The carbonation nicely lifts the palate that may otherwise be a litle syrupy with all that real fruit in there. The ABV stays completely under the radar. Very nice indeed.
sdk (33) - Island Bay, NEW ZEALAND - MAY 7, 2009
3.8 AROMA 7/10 APPEARANCE 3/5 TASTE 8/10 PALATE 3/5 OVERALL 17/20
330ml bottle. Three Boys glass. Pours a nice golden brown, no head as expected. Fruity nose with the plum right up front. Plum tartness with a little sour after taste. Very refreshing, very morish.
SorenE (168) - , NEW ZEALAND - APR 22, 2009
3.5 AROMA 7/10 APPEARANCE 2/5 TASTE 7/10 PALATE 3/5 OVERALL 16/20
murky orange with virtually no head. smells of earthy plums, sort of a saison with plums. tastes like my mothers home made plum juice with a bit of malt and slight bitterness. Alcohol is well hidden although quite warming. quite sweet and quite tasty!
kiwibt (55) - , NEW ZEALAND - FEB 12, 2009
2.9 AROMA 5/10 APPEARANCE 4/5 TASTE 6/10 PALATE 3/5 OVERALL 11/20
Pours red brown with small reducing head.
Aroma of sherry fortified plum with a slight crystal malt background.
Flavour of sherry plum overpowering a malt background and a alcohol finish.
An interesting beer, I almost tastes like a blend of fermented plums and crystal based beer aged for a few months.
TheGrandMaster (2334) - Auckland, NEW ZEALAND - FEB 4, 2009
3.4 AROMA 7/10 APPEARANCE 3/5 TASTE 7/10 PALATE 3/5 OVERALL 14/20
Bottle. Pours a pinkish orange. Aroma of sweet plums, some biscuity malt, and slightly medicinal (not surprisingly at 7.7%). Fruit on the palate, and quite spicy. The malt comes through quite well, and I also get hints of almond. The alcohol has a big presence, making this a sipper rather than a quaffer. But one I wouldn’t mind sipping some more.
Demise (57) - Wellington, NEW ZEALAND - JAN 19, 2009
3.5 AROMA 8/10 APPEARANCE 4/5 TASTE 8/10 PALATE 3/5 OVERALL 12/20
Pours a cloudy brown/orange with a deep pink tinge and a fluffy white head. Pure plum on the nose, with subtle sugary-sweet notes and a hint of malt and yeast. The plum flavour dominates in an almost cleansing fashion. Fresh berry and natural fruit sugar are also present, making the flavour almost syrupy due to the lack of carbonation. This seems to works in favour of the ale however, creating strong and intense flavours. A beautiful malt body with yeast present on the finish. The texture left in my mouth at the ale’s conclusion even reminded me of when eating plums from home. Incredibly unusual beer.
greig (253) - Hamilton, NEW ZEALAND - JAN 16, 2009
3.5 AROMA 7/10 APPEARANCE 1/5 TASTE 8/10 PALATE 4/5 OVERALL 15/20
donfardz absolutely nailed this beer. I won’t attempt to dispute a word he said, but my ratings are different expressing my view on enjoyability of each factor. I’d also add that the packaging really is amazing. Who else has seen a wax sealed beer in NZ? It would be nice if there was a little more complexity to back this up. A good beer. I’d drink it on tap like a session beer (and pay for it too, no doubt). Dancing on the table aside, a solid effort. I hope Ralph makes this again next year - it will be interesting to see how it evolves.