FlacoAlto (4176) - Tucson, Arizona, USA - DEC 13, 2007monkeychugg55 (1086) - Joliet, Illinois, USA - APR 16, 2017
UPDATED: DEC 21, 2007 Batch 2, Sampled December 2007
It was definitely a slight mistake to serve this at near cellar temperatures (60ºF / 15.5ºC), as the beer foamed up and started gushing as soon as I popped the cork. I only lost a couple ounces though. The beer forms a frothy, scant fat-one-finger thick, pale, off white colored head that is actually quite persistent. The beer is a hazy, slightly chunky, orange tinted, dark straw color. The oak character seems much subdued from the first batch (which is a good thing as this was my main complaint with that beer). This is nice and funky, notes of urea, aromatic goat, farmhouse-stinky-cheese, a definite cattiness, mushroom spore and a host of sharp phenolics that at times approaches fresh curing plastic. Underneath the funk is a nice fruit character reminiscent of tart, un-ripened white grapes (sauvignon blanc & gewürztraminer come to mind), as well as touch of green apple and tart pear aromas. The aroma on this is really quite nice, it is definitely ringing my funky bone right now.
Tart, but not aggressively so (at least for this Gueuze addict), it is somehow soft and creamy feeling, despite the still present carbonation. This creaminess has definitely been picked up in the barrel as oak notes add some tongue coating softness to this brew and even some heft to the body; suggestive from the butter-like oak flavors this makes the beer actually feel buttery in texture. Soft oak contributions of vanillin, a definite sharp spiciness and perhaps a hint of buttery-oak notes are all found here, though the spicy notes are definitely the largest oak character here. The wine analogy continues as the process used is definitely a contributor; definitely reminiscent of an oaky chardonnay as this beer has flavors of green fruit, star-fruit, flint, a certain light metallic quality and that definite oak presence. The funky wee-beasts and the oak contribute spice notes of white pepper, piquant ginger, The flavor is not quite as funky as the aroma might have suggested, but I think this is ultimately a good thing as it allows the complexity of the fruit, oak and spiciness to come through. The sourness, while present and definitive, is so well integrated that it is not overly noticed on its own.
The oak character is much more in check with this the second batch. This is a far superior beer in my opinion (and it hasn’t taken anywhere near 5 years as I last predicted) as the oak, while present, now plays a supporting role. If successive batches keep getting better, then I am going to need to re-baseline my scoring. Just a fantastic brew. The texture is phenomenal & the flavor is just so well integrated and nuanced. The aroma, while absolutely engaging and complex, may actually be a bit too funky. Let me explain that though, because I absolutely love funk and the funk found in the aroma, while dominant, is so well integrated together, but it is a bit too dominant to let the nuanced oak, grape and malt notes through (despite being so inviting and characterful). I may even need to crack a batch 1 just to see what is happening to that .I still maintain that these 375ml bottles just aren’t quite enough, as I always want more of this brew after draining my glass. Though if it was a 750’s worth, my proliferous text might be pushing the extremes of my already superfluous ramblings.
Batch 1, Sampled July 2005
7/4/7/4/16 total 3.8
Pours a lightly hazy orange-copper color, it is pretty well carbonated and has a frothy pale, almost white head. The aroma is quite oaky with lots of buttery notes, an astringent woodiness, notes of grapes (perhaps sauvignon or chardonnay), notes of pears, and some subtle spice notes. Quite an interesting nose on this one.
The beer is quite light on the palate, and very dry. The dryness actually suppresses the oakiness a bit, but it is definitely still here. The finish is quite long with a subtle tannic woodiness to it. There is a light acidity (for a Lambic at least) here as well, more similar to the lactic character of a Lambic than the acetic character of a Flemish sour beer. I am really quite relieved that I don’t get any diacetyl in this beer (I am quite sensitive to it), there is a bit of buttery character (mostly in the aroma), but this is definitely oak derived. There is a certain spritzy character to this beer that is a combination of the carbonation and the acidity.
This beer is really quite interesting, Vinnie still has a ways to go, but this has more to do with the barrels than Vinnie at this point. I think that Vinnie has the touch, in perhaps 5 years (if the wee bugs are compliant and amenable) the new releases of this should be stellar.
Purchased: Russian River Brewing
Such a great beer. Super complex but everything is in perfect harmony. White whine character is mellow and peasant. The sourness is nice and not overly acidic. keithk (18) - brooklyn, New York, USA - MAR 31, 2017
This is my perfect beer - I can find no fault. Crisp, delicious, beautiful to look at. Sour, fruity, funky, plus a little Chardonnay wood. The best of the (amazing) Russian River lineup of wild/belgian/cask aged styles. Vestergaard (2089) - Aarhus C, DENMARK - MAR 18, 2017
From bottle thanks to Maxi. Pours a slight hazy yellow with a Big White head. Aroma has quite estery yeast, funk, oak, sweetish White Wine, very fruity. Taste is super oaky, sour, smooth and spicy. Fluffy, velvety texture and an average carbonation.
---Rated via Beer Buddy for iPhone Klimaet (2539) - Aarhus N, DENMARK - MAR 18, 2017
Bottle thanks to Maxi. Pours hazy bright orange with a small white head. Aromas of brett, pineapple, citrus, mango, estery. Taste is super oaky, grapey, bretty, crackers, peach, tart and light bitter finish. Very delicious. olsvammel (7220) - Örebro, SWEDEN - MAR 18, 2017
Bottle from a friend. Tart, fruity smell, funky with wood and some earthy aroma. Similar taste. Very nice! Love the funk and the tartness.
ansalon (3795) - Stockholm, SWEDEN, SWEDEN - FEB 12, 2017
Pours cloudy orange with a medium frothy white head. Aromas of citrus, funk, green grapes, green apples, dew grass, kiwi, oakgooseberry, elderberry, light stable. Taste is sour and very fruity with a strong oak character and some earthy tone. Mouthfeel is dry and tart with medium carbonation and body. kryon (3503) - Hässelby, SWEDEN - FEB 12, 2017
Pours milky hazy yellow with low white head
Aromas lovely tart of lemon, green grapes, lemon zest, oak, hints of barnyard
Taste has tart and funky notes of lemon zest, green grapes, hints of green apples, oak , citrusy fruits
Mouthfeel is tart, medium carbonated, no bitterness, dry. Very very nice sour Brentv (672) - Portland, Oregon, USA - FEB 9, 2017
On tap at ABV Pub in Hillsboro, OR. Clear golden straw. Aroma and taste of funk and fruits. Dry. Lingering funky finish. hopman23 (11) - - FEB 8, 2017
Great Sour Blonde Ale, Poured from a 12oz belgian corked bottle. Hazy blonde, perfect sourness AXL72 (96) - SWEDEN - JAN 6, 2017
Bottle at home. Almost clear bright golden with a quite big white head. Earthy and dry, funky and sour. Notes from barnyard, chardonnay and oak, in combination with a nice and fresh fruitiness.