overall
97
97
style
RATINGS: 835   WEIGHTED AVG: 3.74/5   EST. CALORIES: 270   ABV: 9%
COMMERCIAL DESCRIPTION
Belgian Christmas ale aged in oak barrels.

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3.5
kp (10881) - Woodstock, Georgia, USA - NOV 25, 2007
UPDATED: FEB 4, 2008 Date: 01/23/2008
Mode: bottle
Vintage: batch 1
Score: 3.4 to 3.5
Words: Green’s

dark brown, easily roused beige head, sudsy lace, heavy spiced oak aroma, rich dark malt flavor, touch of chocolate, spicyness and oak character complements each other really well,

Aroma: 7/10; Appearance: 8/10; Flavor: 7/10; Palate: 6/10; Overall: 14/20
Rating: 3.5/5.0
Drinkability: 8/10
Score: **4
-------- /> Date: 11/16/2007
Mode: Bottle
Source: Tasting, Bobo
Vintage: 2007

muddy dark brown, frothy beige head, specks of lace, sweet and tart aroma with lots of fruity tartness with heavy oak, rich malt flavor, lots of oak character, touch of fruity tartness, lots of spicyness,

3.8
Nephilium (1821) - Cleveland, Ohio, USA - NOV 24, 2007
Strong tart aroma, mainly sour apples. Pours a dark reddish-brown with a thick fluffy just slightly off-white head. Very tart aroma, with hints of spices and a touch of bitterness in the finish. Alcohol very well hidden. With the standard tartness amongst all of their beers, I’m beginning to think that Jolly Pumpkin may have become a typical hate them or love them type of brewery.

3.9
LinusStick (3553) - Moon Twp, suburb of Pittsburgh, Pennsylvania, USA - NOV 24, 2007
Wow! Jolly Pumpkin hit the nail on the head with this one. I would describe this as a sour ale aged in oak barrels. Aroma perfect. Sour cherries, funk and oak. Pour was a nice murky dark brown with a 2 finger tan head. Taste was a little less intense than the aroma. Sour fruit with a lot of funk and yeast. Very acidic and nice bitter aftertaste. Alcohol is hidden extremely well. One of the best beers I’ve had from them yet.

3.7
boboski (1095) - Alabama, USA - NOV 24, 2007
Pours hazy deep mahogany/ruby with woodsy tones and a thin beige head with perfect retention. So Belgian is the nose; Jolly Pumpkin’s house character is ever-growing, getting funked-out and phenomenal. Heavy vinous notes, black cherry and other berry esters penetrate. Brett is showing already, this is well bottle conditioned. Oak induced funk, minor winter spice such as cardamom is swirling about. Yeastiness is full and pleasant. Alcohol is only a minor backnote, mostly well concealed. Cinnamon, not evident in the nose, bursts through with the first sip, followed by syrupy sugars. Oak and mild tartness rule in the flavor, sweetness is only a moderate partner in the composition unfolding. Acidity is sharp. Nutmeg and lactic acid grow and combine with each sip, the resulting overall flavor is unique and moderately refreshing; it’s also another fine example of JP’s uncompromising approach to crafting Belgian influenced ales with Autumnal overtones. The body is medium and airy despite thick, ridged edges. Medium-intensity carbonation is silky. The finish is loaded with caramel, spice and oak and smooth while still retaining hints of prickly confusion. Very good - will likely dry out, fizz up and be even more enjoyable with time and the inevitable progression of tartness and funk. Definitely not going to win too many new fans with this wild, experimental tangential exercise.

3
jrob21 (4001) - Atlanta, Georgia, USA - NOV 22, 2007
Pre t-day dinner beer. Poured a nice dark brown color and was expecting a bit more body and flavor. I may have drunk this a little too cold. Got some big yeast flavors. The oak mellows out the yeast a little and makes this a smoother drink. I did not get a lot of depth or character out of this one. Getting the same old experience out of these guys, big yeast and not a lot of complexity.

4
BDR (2535) - Roseville, Minnesota, USA - NOV 22, 2007
A murky brown pour with off white head. The aroma is an appealing combination of sour barnyard funk, oak, and light spiciness. I think I might detect some dark pitted fruits and cinnamon in there as well. Oak and sour dominate the body which maintains some faint Christmas spice. Smooth finish. Belgian yeast makes an appearance as the bottle approaches room temperature. Best served slightly chilled, but not cold.

2.7
SSSteve (4007) - - NOV 21, 2007
dark brown with a large beige head. typical oak, bret, green olive aroma. every beer is beginning to taste the same from this brewery. i don’t notice anything different from one to the next. they all taste like olives. overpowered with oak. no more man. anyway, for what it’s worth, this was another decent (11th)example of their flagship beer style. .....with a little cinnamon.

2.5
Schroppfy (2362) - Łódż, Warsaw, Poland; Michigan, Ohio, USA - NOV 20, 2007
UPDATED: DEC 2, 2007 Blend 2. Wow. Painful as it is to say this after so long loving this brewery, but the lactic flavors have totally overtaken all the darker beers. Some soft spices are here, for sure, but the brewery trademark moderate carbonation on top of intense lactic sourness is about all. There’s no body depth to speak of, there’s barely discernable malt sweetness or hop flavor - just sour milkiness, thin roastiness and coffee, nutmeg and clove. Watery. Finally gets a bit more tolerable in the yeast pour. Between this and the latest incarnation of Fuego del Otono, I am unfortunately extremely disappointed in the one dimensionality. Lactic bombs. Heinous bummer.

4
hopscotch (11551) - Vero Beach, Florida, USA - NOV 20, 2007
Bottle… This beer rocks!… Hazy, ruby-colored ale with orange highlights and a mid-sized, fluffy, white head. Good retention. Acidic aroma with tons of wood and farm funk wrapped around moderate caramel and mild chocolate notes. Terrific sourness balanced by sweet malt with mild hop and alcohol bitterness. Still, it leans just a hair toward the sweet side. A touch grainy. Medium to full-bodied with a buttery mouthfeel and tingly carbonation. Finishes lightly coarse, tangy and gently sweet. Dickinsonbeer came through with this sample!

3.7
AllAboutStout (605) - Cincinnati, Ohio, USA - NOV 19, 2007
UPDATED: DEC 8, 2007 Re-rate:Dec 7, 2007 Had a different batch, this time I had blend #2. This is much better than the original bottle . Doesn’t have the funky smell/taste with it. Much more of the typical JP funk and sourness. Glad to see it was a bad bottle and not the beer itself.

Blend #1. Pours a murky brown in color. Smell is off. Smells a bit skunky, not funky. The typical JP sourness/funk is there, but a bit subdued. The typcial Christmas spices are present. Mouthfeel is nice and no sign of the ABV in the taste. Still can’t get over this "dirty sock" kind of skunky smell. Will let the other bottles sit for awhile and see where this one goes.


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