overall
98
91
style
RATINGS: 1328   WEIGHTED AVG: 3.78/5   EST. CALORIES: 216   ABV: 7.2%
COMMERCIAL DESCRIPTION
La Roja, an artisan amber ale brewed in the Flanders tradition. Deep amber with earthy caramel, spice and sour fruit notes developed through natural barrel aging. Unfiltered, unpasteurized and blended from barrels ranging in age between two and ten months. Truly an ale of distinction.

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4.3
vyvvy (6460) - Florissant, Missouri, USA - MAY 10, 2006
UPDATED: MAY 14, 2008 Pours a nice dark amber with an off white head that hangs around. Smells like the barrel it was aged in - oaky and malty with a bit of vanilla. Taste starts off sour and is very crisp, the finish changes things up though with oak and vanilla. Mouthfeel is a bit lighter than expected and has some spritzy carbonation. As the beer warms some other flavors come out - the sourness turns into sharp fruitiness (maybe passionfruit). Spicy / peppery aspects sneak in as well. The fruit flavors that appear are very dry, there is not much sweetness to the beer - some dry pineapple and mango hints. Towards the end there is a hint of whiskey, but it is not prevalent or overbearing like many beers out there today. Overall an enjoyable that I will have again. (8/4/8/3/17 - 4.0)
Rerate notes: No problems with the original notes at all. Now that this is easily obtainable I feel the numbers need to be bumped up to reflect the excellence this beer oozes. A mix of sour, barrel aging, crazy funk, bourbon and all of the other interesting things. Nothing dominates to hiding anything, but all are bold and noticeable. It’s almost like subtleties in a bold way ~ just accentuates the the complexity and excellence in the beer.

4
tennisjoel (1457) - Rochester, Minnesota, USA - MAY 9, 2006
The appearance of this beer scores kudos based on a super head with an attractive brown murky body. Aroma is very intriguing, tart cherry with cookie, caramel, and bubble gum undertones. Taste is tart up front, similar to the La Folie, which I recently rated and was my first Sour Flemish Ale. However, unlike the overbearing sour which I am unaccustomed to, this one was better balanced and grew on me as I drank more of it. As this beer warms, the tartness become more mellowed and nice yeasty barnyard belgian flavors come to the forefront. The beer has an average mouthfeel and is well balanced. Sour but not overbearingly so. Negatives are that it is slightly gritty and maybe a little overcarbonated, but I truly enjoyed this and look forward to trying some of Jolly Pumpkin’s other beers in the future.

3.8
DrGonzo (625) - Somerville, Massachusetts, USA - MAY 6, 2006
A murky brown color with a large off-white head. Slightly sour aroma, woody, hints of vinegar soaked cherries. On the dark and acidic end of the biere de garde spectrum, approaching Flemish sour ale status. I like the woody touch, though the dominant flavor here is something close to lemon. Seems like it’s stuck in between two styles: Flemish sour, and dubbel. It’s still pretty good, and has a place if for nothing else than for some interesting food pairings.

3.5
bfeldmann (1050) - Wilmington, Delaware, USA - APR 28, 2006
"Poured amber color an okay head that laced okay was well. Aroma was of light fruits alcohol. Flavor was citrus malts and alcohol. Mouthfeel was medium."

3.6
CMUBEERMAN (440) - - APR 19, 2006
Pours a hazy red brown. Aroma is oak, yeast funk, alcohol, spice, tart fruit, and a bit of sweet malt. This beer was pretty good, but not really much better than the grand reserve...in my opinion this one tastes more like oak and is less sour. In addition, it gets a lot more malt happening when it warms up. Flavor is dominated by spice, wood, and alcohol. Seriously, this is one of the strongest and distinct tasting 7% beers I’ve had. Mouthfeel is great...as with all JPs.

3.6
canary dog (774) - Rutland, Vermont, USA - APR 19, 2006
The first impression was one of surprise. Then I realized, "Wow, this stuff reminds me of my favorite all time beer that I can’t get anymore." That, of course, would be Rodenbach Grand Cru. Not as complex and sincere, of course, but an admirable attempt nonetheless, including the fine nose.

3.6
DavidP (1748) - Milwaukee, Wisconsin, USA - APR 17, 2006
From a bottle shared by Jason (purchased in November). Hazy brown body, thin tan foamy head. Cider, mango, coffee cake, some maple in the aroma all ensconced by sublte woody spiciness. The flavor is falling out of favor with me; it’s primary component is dry medium toast wood. Otherwise there’s a fruity apple/ester character with a caramel sweetness in the background. The flavors are well blended and good just not horribly compelling for me.

4.3
JCapriotti (1379) - Milwaukee, Wisconsin, USA - APR 17, 2006
UPDATED: FEB 24, 2007 Murkey, dark coppery amber. Nice creamy light tan head. Aroma has a rich sourness... some lime component, bourbon, flowers. Very nice aroma. Some of the richness leaves in the flavor. Some grassy sour caramel malt. Earthy wood overlap the sour perfectly. Great flavor... just wish there was more of it. Really good drink; could see myself drinking this frequently and spending time with it.

3.7
LePoopie (151) - Menomonee Falls, Wisconsin, USA - APR 17, 2006
Thanks to Jason for the sample! Has a pleasant malty, carmel aroma. Decent cloudy brown body with a tan head. Nice flavor, its a mix of malts and fruits. Has a good body, although the carbonation is a little overpowering. Overall, however, this is pretty pleasing.

4.1
erway (1004) - Albuquerque, New Mexico, USA - APR 13, 2006
You gotta love JPs style designations! Pours a clear deep amber with a bountiful and lasting off-white head. Aromas are cookie malt, lightly acidic with a barn-yard funkiness and a beutiful floral note. The body is med-light with a ton of CO2 but it is certainly not distracting. The flavors have lots of toffee, caramel, dried fruits and a wonderfully balancing acidity. The finish lasts with a beautiful spiciness. There is nothing Biere de Garde about this. Biere de Gardes are lagers, this is anything but a lager.


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