Style: Flanders Red Ale
I’m so happy to have found a bottle of this beer. As a note, it cost me over $20, which I am chalking up to the fact that I live on the east coast. We don’t really see many beers by the Bruery here, but I am super excited to try this one. I’ve only sampled a few sours so far and this is my first Flemish red so I have high hopes.
The bottle has a classy cellar-worthy bottle with a nice psychedelic twist. The color scheme is strangely renaissance/medieval. In fact, the overall feel of the bottle reminds me of Alice in Wonderland. The text is a little heavy on the bottle label, but it melds into the label nicely and makes it less confusing, unless you focus on it and then it does have some problems. The blue text to describe the beer style is lost in the psychedelic background pattern, which is too bad. The fancy fonts are all great, and I love the brewery name font, but the overload of text could be toned down. Overall though, this bottle is worthy of your shelf. It is a rising classic of the sour ales, and it has an awesome Alice and Wonderland feel to it.
The beer pours a dark brown red with a creamy white ring of head on the edges. It’s too dark to really see through it and is hazy to boot, but there do seem to be bubbles traveling up the sides to suggest carbonation. The lacing stays on as a clinging ring of sticky dry bubbles. The beer smells like leathery dark cherry with a slight alcoholic bite in the back of the nose; it’s as if a dried cherry strip were created and then liquefied. Malt backbone is faint, but seems to be sweet and caramely. The tart cherry smell is the entirety of the bitters in this beer. There is also a faint note of creamy chocolate in the nose’s base which may also be the malt.
The beer tastes puckeringly tart and cherry fruity with a faint chocolaty feel in the middle and a slight aftertaste. The tart cherry is the main taste in this beer though, and it shines through. Alcohol is completely hidden in the taste, blending in with the tartness to completely mask itself. There is also a great funk that hits the back of the tongue and suggests some fantastic spiciness. Vanilla notes are also present in the middle and aftertaste that provide a sweet and creamy taste. Mouthfeel is puckering and tart with the sour (obviously). The carbonation, however, is completely velvety and smooth, with a slight chewiness. Overall this is a fantastic beer. I already love the complexity of the beer’s flavor. This is admittedly my first Flemish red, and I am very happy with what it has proven to be. This beer is obviously worth a taste for anyone that’s a beer lover, especially sour beer lovers, and is also worth a try for anyone that loves sour tastes, especially Warheads! (If you have a love for sours you should read this! It’s from the Bruery and it mentions Warheads!) Try this beer.