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Cucapá Obscura - Cucapá Brewing Company

Not Rated.
Cucapá ObscuraCucapá Obscura

Displayed for educational use only; do not reuse.
BA SCORE
79
okay

126 Ratings
THE BROS
-
no score

(send 'em beer!)
Ratings: 126
Reviews: 82
rAvg: 3.43
pDev: 13.99%
Wants: 0
Gots: 5 | FT: 0
Brewed by:
Cucapá Brewing Company visit their website
Mexico

Style | ABV
American Brown Ale |  4.50% ABV

Availability: Year-round

Notes/Commercial Description:
No notes at this time.

(Beer added by: fido on 04-08-2007)
Beer: Ratings & Reviews
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Ratings: 126 | Reviews: 82 | Display Reviews Only:
Reviews by charlzm:
Photo of charlzm
3.9/5  rDev +13.7%
look: 4 | smell: 4 | taste: 4 | feel: 4 | overall: 3.5

Consumed 02/14/09.

Pours a clear, deep brown with mahogany highlights. A one finger off-white head disappears almost immediately, leaving a very fine skin of foam. No bubbles to be seen in the glass.

Aroma is sweet with notes of honey and pitted fruits. Apricots, even?

Beer is quite sweet. A little nut flavor, but not much. Honey and sweet apricot. Some fig flavor as well. There is an unexpected and short-lived bitter finish which seems to be due mainly to burnt malt. It actually works. A bit of drying parch on the tongue and alcohol warming in the belly.

Unexpectedly flavorful, the only ding against the drinkability of this beer is its close to cloying sweetness.

charlzm, Feb 15, 2009
More User Reviews:
Photo of brownbeer
2.9/5  rDev -15.5%
look: 3.5 | smell: 3.5 | taste: 2.5 | feel: 3 | overall: 3

Brownish color with a thin head.

It has sort of a sourish vinegar aroma, which seems out of place. Not sure if that's intended.

The taste is pretty bland; faint maple syrup, and what is really the problem, tin. The more I drink this glass the more bland it somehow becomes. It just ends up being watery and tinny.

I don't think I have to say it, but pass.

brownbeer, May 04, 2010
Photo of jondeelee
3.74/5  rDev +9%
look: 4 | smell: 3.75 | taste: 3.75 | feel: 3.5 | overall: 3.75

Obscura opens to a nose that is fairly equally divided between citrusy hops and ash. The former bring bright pink grapefruit, lemon/lime, and grapefruit rind, with lighter touches of pine resin, and the latter add light, but definitely present hints of ash and black malt. The combination is strange, the hops definitely geared toward the more citrusy side, and the ash adding a layer of burnt grain that bounces off of the hops, not quite working with them, but still somehow complementing them. There are also good touches of brown sugar, as well as orange, white grape, and apricot fruit esters, and hints of burnt toast and Grape Nuts cereal. As a whole, this is one of the more unique aromas on the market, and almost has a kitchen sink effect, as if a whole bunch of leftover ingredients from several styles of beer were simply thrown into a pot, and then super-hopped. The result is clashing, but at the same time, intriguing.

On the tongue, the beer opens with the same mixed hop-and-ash note noted in the nose, but the hops are even more pronounced and citrusy here, with huge lemon/lime flavors mixing with pink grapefruit, and only slight touches of grapefruit rind and pine. These react strangely to the ashy, coffee ground-laden, black malt-like background, much the same way fresh-squeezed grapefruit juice and coffee would, not quite meshing, but just intriguing enough to make you want to go back for a second sip. In that second sip, the flavors continue unabated, battling with each other, the tongue unsure quite what to do. There are supporting notes in here, including brown breads, biscuits, and hints of apricot and orange fruit esters, but it’s mainly hops and ash that win out. Late in the mouthful the ash actually wins out in the battle, flooding the tastebuds with ash and black malt. The aftertaste features a continuation of these ashy notes, with hops making a comeback as the ash dies off, and the hop notes linger for a good while. Mouthfeel is medium-light to medium, and carbonation is medium to medium-high, fizzing on the tongue.

Overall, there is much about this beer that is interesting, and by themselves, the hoppy notes and ashy notes would be quite nice. The combination of the two, however, doesn’t quite work, with sourness, bitterness, and sugary citrus flavors clashing wildly with ash and black malt. The result is still drinkable, but strange.

jondeelee, Feb 07, 2013
Photo of Trashcat
3.25/5  rDev -5.2%

Trashcat, Nov 20, 2014
Photo of AdrianMendez
3.75/5  rDev +9.3%

AdrianMendez, Apr 24, 2013
Photo of Brenden
3.3/5  rDev -3.8%
look: 4 | smell: 3.5 | taste: 3 | feel: 3.5 | overall: 3.5

This beer is a clear reddish brown in color. A light brown head pours out huge, looking a bit fizzy initially. Somehow there's so much of it, though, that when it fades it still sits at a respectable finger and a half and is quite rocky. Oddly enough, my pint glass is still filled with liquid. The head then faces to a thick foam that remains and plenty of patchy lacing is left on the glass.
Roasted malts and barley make the core of the aroma, backed by a hint of nuts. I get only the slightest touch of caramel sweetness. Earthy hops are also strong. A slight metallic tint sits in the aroma as well.
The same nice roasted malts and barley are in the flavor balanced by a sturdy dose of hops with some nuts. It gets oddly tangy toward the middle of the sip with a mildly astringent note as well, marring the finish of what would be an otherwise good flavor if not for the fact that a funky sourness kicks in partway through. It's still better than any Mexican beer I've tried yet.
This one's on the very light side of medium in the body. A prickly carbonation makes this one lively and doesn't go too far, though it could be slightly lessened. It's fairly dry and has a mildly grainy texture.
Craft beer from Mexico? Surely not. This one is certainly a step above almost everything if not everything from Modelo, Pacifico, or any of the pretenders.

Brenden, Oct 11, 2010
Photo of biboergosum
3.74/5  rDev +9%
look: 4 | smell: 3.5 | taste: 3.75 | feel: 4 | overall: 3.75

355ml bottle, day 3 of the 2013 Craft Beer Advent Calendar. 4.8% ABV on this one, with a newer (than the one on here, at least) label, depicting, I think, some native Mexican art.

This beer pours a clear, fairly dark red-brick amber hue, with two fingers of puffy, cushioned, and bubbly tan head, which leaves some decent gnarled tree growth lace around the glass as things slowly drop away.

It smells of gritty, crackery caramel malt, oily bar-top nuts, weak bittersweet cocoa, a bit of cold coffee, dark sugar reduction, and a plain earthy, mineral-like dryness. The taste is bready caramel malt, Toffifay candies, a bit of sweetened black tea, and more very soft earthy, weedy hops.

The carbonation is quite understated, and barely noticeable for the most part, the body an adequate medium weight, and generally smooth, with a small stab at a nutty creaminess. It finishes on the sweet side, the caramel, toffee, chocolate, and nuttiness all carrying on.

One of the better beers that I've had from this Baja Californian brewer, if a little unbalanced towards the sweet side, but there's no lack of overall flavour here. More of a dessert accompaniment, I would imagine, perhaps a nutty brownie or the like (and not just 'cause I have some of that left over from lunch!)

biboergosum, Dec 04, 2013
Photo of Lazerlobe
3.88/5  rDev +13.1%
look: 4 | smell: 4 | taste: 3.5 | feel: 4 | overall: 4.5

Thanks to Greg for the gift.This is my first experience with Cucapa but I may seek out some more.

Pours a nice reddish brown with some khaki head.

I'm getting some sweet malt with a hint of toast and not too much else.

The toast is in there but a little lighter than I'd expect from a brown. The sweetness is accompanied by some vanilla and roast.

Overall, this is a sweet beer and on a warm day like today, it's way too easy to drink. Mexico's best brewery?

Lazerlobe, May 03, 2010
Photo of augustgarage
3.5/5  rDev +2%
look: 3.5 | smell: 3.5 | taste: 3.5 | feel: 3.5 | overall: 3.5

12oz bottle at Blue Palms Brewhouse. Served in a nonic. Have been curious about this brewery for a while as the head brewer I believe used to work for Port...

Slightly murky rose ebony liquid with a thin off-white collar. No real head development or retention. Small amoeba like lacing.

Caramel malt, wet hay, light hops, and a faintly sour grain note reminiscent of rye in the nose.

Flavors closely follow the smells with the addition of an almost corn-like sweetness and a bit of what almost tastes like white cheddar.

Light-bodied, and not terribly drinkable - even with food. Lacks the nut and dark malt flavors I usually expect from this style.

Really surprised but this didn't supplant Negra Modelo for me as my go-to Mexican beer.

augustgarage, Jan 29, 2010
Photo of Kegatron
4/5  rDev +16.6%
look: 4 | smell: 4 | taste: 4 | feel: 4 | overall: 4

12 oz can into a pint glass. The packaging seems to indicate that this is a "Limited Production". I'm assuming that since this I don't seeing any other reviews for this in cans, that it is in reference to the packaging and not the beer.

Pours a deep looking dark amber, with 3 big foamy fingers of light tan head (definitely darker than off-white). Retains with a thin creamy look that leaves a strong smattering of spotty lacing back. Good strong look here to this. The aroma is roasty, doughy, and fairly fruity in the nose. Lighter notes of caramel, cocoa, and a touch of earthy hops round this out.

The taste is toasted and doughy with sugars all at once, with a definite fruity presence to it that mixes with some lighter tones of chocolate, caramel, and brown sugar to imbue a much darker flavor to it. Hops are spicy and put a more moderate assertiveness to this, drying the backend of the profile out and lingering along with some residual sweetness. The mouthfeel is medium bodied, with a firm crispness to the carbonation but this is overall very easy in the mouth despite a touch of heft and warmth (which feels bigger than 4.5%) to this.

This was a most welcome surprise, as I had picked this up on a lark while out in So Cal the other month and this was my first ever Mexican Craft Beer. There was a surprising amount of flavor here, with the mouthfeel having a crisp yet smooth feel to it that reminded me a lot of a Lager. Color me impressed, and I will definitely keep an eye out for more from these guys next time I'm out in the area.

Kegatron, Jan 05, 2010
Photo of HalfFull
3.65/5  rDev +6.4%
look: 3.5 | smell: 3.5 | taste: 3.5 | feel: 4 | overall: 4

Poured into a pint glass, this brew yields a deep reddish brown pour with a half inch head.

Smell is initially of caramelized malts and a touch of hops. This opens up and yields a bit of dried fruit and coffee.

A relatively light body and mouthfeel for the appearance with a light to moderate carbonation, offering a nice tingly finish. Tastes of rich malt and chocolate, yet I don't really get a sense of this being too sweet. Light hops on the close. Feel and drinkability are good with a nice balance of carbonation, sweetness and ABV.

HalfFull, Aug 21, 2008
Photo of akorsak
2.1/5  rDev -38.8%
look: 4 | smell: 2 | taste: 2 | feel: 2 | overall: 2

Thanks to Woody for this can.

A: The brown ale is a full reddish brown color, dark enough to be opaque. On closer inspection, ruby red highlights emerge. A thin band of head hangs around the edges of the glass.

S: A little metallic and off-smelling. Not a good sign of things to come. No hint of the toffee and caramel mixture that I've noticed before.

T: More caramel in the taste, enough to mask any unpleasantness (like in the nose). No way around calling this one either infected or past its prime.

M and D: The ale looks very attractive in my glass. Things just move downhill from there. I didn't finish it.

akorsak, Nov 20, 2010
Photo of emerge077
3.9/5  rDev +13.7%
look: 4 | smell: 3.5 | taste: 4 | feel: 4 | overall: 4

Thanks Weibull for sending this as an extra!

Pours a deep shade of chestnut brown, and glows red in the light. Foam rises to the rim and settles to a thin skim, leaving sparse lacing.

Toasty malt and brown sugar in the first whiff. Solid malty base, a mild raisin sweetness with a little floral hop bitterness in the end. Some residual mild roast flavors hang around too. Pretty big flavors for such a light drinking ale.

This is definitely one to break the "bad Mexican beer" stereotype.

emerge077, May 24, 2008
Photo of bluejacket74
2.98/5  rDev -13.1%
look: 3.5 | smell: 3 | taste: 3 | feel: 2.5 | overall: 3

12 ounce can. Served in a nonic pint glass, the beer pours a brown color with a half inch off-white head. Head retention is low, lacing is decent. Aroma is toasted malt, chocolate, and a bit of a vinegary aroma. The taste is the same as the aroma, the toasted malt and chocolate is there, but so is a slight vinegar taste. I'm pretty sure this beer isn't supposed to be like this, I don't remember trying many brown ales in the past that have a vinegar taste to them. However, this actually doesn't taste bad at all. Mouthfeel/body is light, it's a bit slick but also a bit watery too. Drinkability is average, it's not bad to drink but it isn't exactly enjoyable either. I'm pretty sure I have an old can of this, I'll have to try this fresh (or fresher than what I have now) in the future.

bluejacket74, May 15, 2010
Photo of davidtarantino
4.25/5  rDev +23.9%

davidtarantino, Dec 23, 2011
Photo of jacobseyb
3.7/5  rDev +7.9%
look: 3.5 | smell: 4 | taste: 3.5 | feel: 3.5 | overall: 4

A=very dark amber color with some clarity and a one finger offwhite head

S=sweet chocolate notes with slight alcohol aroma

T=sweet tasting malts with little bitterness to balance

M=light carbonation and slight oiliness

D=drinkable and enjoyable though not super

jacobseyb, Aug 18, 2009
Photo of Beejay
2.75/5  rDev -19.8%
look: 3.5 | smell: 3.5 | taste: 2.5 | feel: 2.5 | overall: 2.5

A: Nice dark brown color, deep red with light coming through it. Decent off white head that dissipates to a thin layer.

S: Sweet malt, raisons, and maple syrup. Nice simple and clean.

T: Slightly tart with dark roasted malt flavor. There is a bit of yeast in there. Not digging the tartness in this.

M: Medium bodied, fairly high carbonation, and leaves a bit of a funk in the finish.

D: Didn't really enjoy this, so no. Not really per se.

Beejay, Sep 04, 2010
Photo of jaydoc
3.25/5  rDev -5.2%

jaydoc, Nov 13, 2013
Photo of Dijeriduster
3.63/5  rDev +5.8%
look: 3.5 | smell: 3 | taste: 4 | feel: 3.5 | overall: 3.5

A - Poured a dark brown to black with a nice head. Not creamy like a stout though - a little more airy
S - Darkish but no coffee or chocolate notes small amount of hop lingers, almost like a mexican lager
T - Pretty good, light almost lager like yeast bite and just a hint of hops. Like a Bavarian beer, not a porter or stout.
M - Surprisingly light for a beer so dark. Good carbonation and solid finish with no syrupy notes.
D - Good beer, might be nice at a BBQ where you don't want a piss beer but still want something light.

Dijeriduster, Dec 07, 2009
Photo of rallison
3.95/5  rDev +15.2%
look: 4 | smell: 3.5 | taste: 4 | feel: 3.5 | overall: 4.5

Fresh bottle picked up a week ago at South Bay. Poured at just under cellar temp into a Gulden Draak glass.

Dark brownish/black color with a nice 1 1/2 finger light tan head that recedes to a good bit of coverage with minimal lacing.

Smells of bready malts and caramel. Maybe a touch of dark fruit and roastiness.

Taste is surprisingly good, especially given the alcohol. Caramel. Nice touch of dark fruits. Some smoky roastiness. Delicate flavors, but nice. Make sure you serve this one warm enough, or I could see this all falling apart. I wouldn't mind having it a touch richer, but it's still nice.

Mouthfeel is a bit light, but acceptable. Drinkability is good on this one. The alcohol makes this a true session beer.

Recommended. A nice bock indeed.

rallison, Sep 26, 2007
Photo of metter98
3.35/5  rDev -2.3%
look: 3.5 | smell: 3.5 | taste: 3.5 | feel: 3 | overall: 3

A: The beer is very hazy amber brown in color and has a moderate amount of carbonation. It poured with a thin beige head that quickly died down, leaving a thin film of bubbles on the surface and a collar around the edge of the glass.
S: There are light aromas of dark and nutty malts in the nose along with some notes of raisins.
T: The taste is similar to the smell and has some additional hints of chocolate flavors towards the finish.
M: It feels light- to medium-bodied and somewhat thin on the palate with a moderate amount of carbonation.
O: This beer is very easy to drink. Nothing really stands out about the taste as being interesting, although it is a cut above many of the other beers I’ve had from Mexico.

metter98, Sep 20, 2012
Photo of javiernano
4/5  rDev +16.6%

javiernano, Mar 06, 2012
Photo of bradybeer
4.1/5  rDev +19.5%
look: 4 | smell: 4 | taste: 4 | feel: 4 | overall: 4.5

Pours a dark brown with a glint of deep ruby red. head is thin and is the color of coco.

Nice hop aroma which is overshadowed by a roasted malt aroma that reminds me of mexican hot chocolate.

In tasting this beer I detect notes of chocolate, raisin, and prunes? The malt sweetness finished with a hint of hop bitterness.

Carbonation is medium and mouthfeel matches this.

Drinkability is high-I could enjoy a number of these with some chicken mole enchiladas.

bradybeer, Jun 14, 2008
Photo of DamageCase76
3.25/5  rDev -5.2%

DamageCase76, Jan 23, 2014
Photo of Giggy
3.93/5  rDev +14.6%
look: 3.5 | smell: 4 | taste: 4 | feel: 3.5 | overall: 4

A: Poured from a can, so I was quite surprised to see this pour a beautiful dark orangish brown. A off-white head formed but it didn't last long.

S: Very powerful dark grains like barley and toasted goodness.

T: Pronounced roasted malty flavor, coffee, roasted nuts, pepper, and a sweet under note.

M: Medium body. Light mouthfeel in comparison to it's appearance .

O: Was pleasantly surprised by this one.

Giggy, Feb 11, 2012
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Cucapá Obscura from Cucapá Brewing Company
79 out of 100 based on 126 ratings.