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Vas Deferens Ale - Caldera Brewing Company

Not Rated.
Vas Deferens AleVas Deferens Ale

Educational use only; do not reuse.
BA SCORE
82
good

120 Ratings
THE BROS
80
good

(view ratings)
Ratings: 120
Reviews: 58
rAvg: 3.62
pDev: 11.6%
Wants: 18
Gots: 13 | FT: 2
Brewed by:
Caldera Brewing Company visit their website
Oregon, United States

Style | ABV
Belgian Strong Dark Ale |  8.10% ABV

Availability: Rotating

Notes & Commercial Description:
Beer added by: Halcyondays on 06-05-2010

No notes at this time.
Beer: Ratings & Reviews
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Ratings: 120 | Reviews: 58
Photo of MtOrion
4.54/5  rDev +25.4%
look: 4.5 | smell: 4.25 | taste: 4.75 | feel: 4.5 | overall: 4.5

Caldera-"Vas Deferens":
The pour: a deep roasted Amber hugh in which light struggled to escape from the essence of the brew.
The Head: a frothy off white that did not stand in the way between my lips and the luscious liquid but still allow for a full beer presence that gave a well malted and orange essence to the old sniffer with a beautiful accompaniment of orange.
The Mouth Feel: A great full Strong ale that did not fail out after the initial contact with the mouth, very smooth, tingly, and full on the tongue and allows the flavours to be savoured for the whole sip.
The Flavor: Sweet roasted malts and orange citrus rise to the top together in this extremely well balanced, truely magnificant Belgian Strong Dark Ale. There is not a single flavour that blasts out and concurs the rest for your lasting attention. Upon The first moment it hits your tongue, the aromas have already set your mouth watering, the sweet and roastiness of the malts gives your a great caramel candied orange flavor. The Sweetness does not snuff out the citrus of the orange and hops, that hold strong, side by side, as the flavor intensifies, just as the on coming bellow of a storm. Unlike the storm, it never bangs and fizzes, just as all good brews, the flavor remains strong and true as the remanents of the flavours are dissolved slowly by your tongue. The slight tartness of the orange seemed to open up your taste buds for the malt to accompany on the same level that the hops and peel were delivering.
This Belgian Strong Dark Ale is one for the books. If you do not have a chance to get this outstanding strong ale in your chalice, then you are truely missing out on a very special beer lovers experience.

Photo of Fatehunter
3.6/5  rDev -0.6%

Pours a thin head on a clear dark straw, almost red colored body.
The aroma is big dry grain, caramel and salt.
The taste has lots of caramel and grain sweetness with lemon bitterness to balance it out.
The texture is fizzy with moderate carbonation.
Enjoyable.

Photo of kemoarps
3.72/5  rDev +2.8%
look: 4 | smell: 3.75 | taste: 3.75 | feel: 3.25 | overall: 3.75

Musty/ruddy brown pour with a soft tan head. Good retention, less lacing than I expected based on retention and size of the head.

Nose is mainly boozy raisins and figs, though the booziness is less straight alcohol burn, and more the rich caramel layers of a bottle of something dark.

There's a couple of different things going on here. There's some interesting directions and themes, but it doesn't seem to come together completely smoothly. It starts with an almost watery chocolate vibe, before the bittering agent comes in from the corners to steal the show, though it's still a little thin through the middle. Like a song with ok bass, solid treble, and mainly lacking on the midrange.
My biggest beef with this beer is the aforementioned lack of a middle class. It's got some interesting things going on (even getting past the bizarre name/label...), and I like some of the flavours it's attempting to bring together, but it is ultimately missing enough components to be a story of unfulfilled promise.

Photo of bump8628
3.7/5  rDev +2.2%
look: 3.5 | smell: 3.5 | taste: 3.75 | feel: 4 | overall: 3.75

Nice to see some Caldera beers outside of their three core canned offerings coming into the state.

Pours a deep chocolate brown. Mild carbonation requires a heavy pour to produce a decent head of khaki foam. Aroma is rather muted but things open up on the palate. Cocoa comes first followed by sweet orange, cinnamon, molasses, and clove. A strong phenolic twang is the only thing that denotes Belgian inspiration. Alcohol is fairly smooth.

Doesn't really come off as a Belgian-type beer due to a lack of expressive yeast character. Still, it's a smooth and mild big beer with some nice flavors. Worth a shot for sure, but not sure what the name has to do with the beer in the bottle.

Photo of stephens101
3.28/5  rDev -9.4%
look: 3.5 | smell: 3.5 | taste: 3 | feel: 3.75 | overall: 3.25

Possibly the most bizarre cover art ever. Very promising!

Ruddy brown with a thin, bubbly froth. Subtle dark fruit to the nose followed by a definite phenolic character, a hint of chocolate and sugar. Tastes of black licorice and dark roasted grains with a dark fruit undercurrent and a side of burnt sugar and alcohol. A little syrup on the lips but not too thick. Viscous and medium-bodied with a dry finish.

Not as over-the-top as the cover art, but enjoyable nonetheless.

Photo of woodychandler
4.02/5  rDev +11%
look: 4 | smell: 4.5 | taste: 4 | feel: 3 | overall: 4

I am now committed to reducing, if not eradicating, my backlog of bottles and I have taken to enlisting aid in doing so. The real logjam comes in the form of bombers. Do not misunderstand me, I am capable of drinking the contents of a bomber by myself, but I am hesitant to do so. Bomb(er)s away!

From the bottle: "Malt beverage brewed with orange bitters and blood orange zest added"; "Caldera Kettle Series ~ Limited Small Batch Seasonal Release"; "Caldera's Vas Deferens Ale is a Belgian-style ale with a unique twist incorporating a litte snip of this and a little snip of that. This is an extremely rare release, as this ale is not meant to reproduce. If ever in Ashland, Oregon, come by and check out the Caldera Tap house, located at 31 Water Street."

What a disconcerting label! I had Justin Chlan with me on my porch and we popped the cap and got started. It was an older bottle, so I used a gentle pour aand got only some deep-tan wisps for head. Color was a deep, coppery-amber (SRM = > 22, < 27) with NE-quality clarity. Nose was really rich - bready, molasses, brown sugar, anise. I began to think of B&B Brown Bread in a CAN. Mouthfeel was thin-to-medium. The taste was very bready with notes of burnt caramel, orange zest, biscuit malt and light chocolate. As it wrmed, I began to get a more pronounced chocolate flavor. Finish ws dry, mostly due to a slight fusel alcohol burn. Phew!

Photo of metter98
3.71/5  rDev +2.5%
look: 3.5 | smell: 3.75 | taste: 3.75 | feel: 3.5 | overall: 3.75

A: The beer is hazy brownish amber in color. It poured with a half finger high off white head that died down rather quickly, leaving lacing on the surface and a collar around the edge
S: Light aromas of dark caramel and brown sugar are present in the nose.
T: The taste is similar to the smell and is quite sweet with lots of flavors of brown sugar. Notes of caramel malts are also present, along with slight hints of oranges towards the finish.
M: It feels medium-bodied on the palate and has a moderate amount of carbonation.
O: This beer didn't taste much like a Belgian Strong Dark Ale and didn't have much in the way of Belgian yeast or dark fruits. It seemed more like an Imperial English Brown Ale, if there was such a style.

Photo of jmdrpi
3.84/5  rDev +6.1%
look: 5 | smell: 3.5 | taste: 4 | feel: 3.5 | overall: 3.75

22 oz bottle, no date. that's quite the label.

appears a medium brown, with thin off-white colored head. good head retention though. mild aroma - bready malt, just a touch of herbal and citrus. nice flavor of the taste, good dark malt flavor, but not overly complex compared to some of this style. medium body & carbonation, okay mouthfeel.

overall - a good beer, but the blood orange flavor doesn't come through much.

Photo of Hopswagger
3.17/5  rDev -12.4%
look: 3.5 | smell: 3.25 | taste: 3 | feel: 3.25 | overall: 3.25

P: Pours a dark mahogany body with khaki froth that settles to a solid mini cap. Spotted lacing.

S: Sweet and roasty dark malt aroma with cocoa, candy sugar, coffee, vanilla, clove, oak, figs, prunes. Overall smell is stale sweetness.

T/M: Starts of with syrupy sweetness of chocolate, dark fruits and then the bitter orange arrives that I missed in the nose followed by the roar of a spicy citrus liqueur. Caramel, belgian yeast and dark bread. Medium body with a small amount of carbonation. Finishes chalky with lingering coffee and orange bitters.

O: This really reminds me more of a watered down milk stout with bitter citrus added. Personally I don't like the orange addition. Not a huge fan if this but it was decent.

Photo of CloudStrife
3.88/5  rDev +7.2%
look: 3.75 | smell: 3.75 | taste: 4 | feel: 4 | overall: 3.75

22oz bottle poured into a snifter.

A: Pours an opaque reddish brown with a moderate slightly tanned head. Too cloudy to make out any visible carbonation. Not much lacing on the sides of the glass.

S: Dark fruits, orange and belgian yeast all attack the nose upon first whiff. Raisin, plum or fig all come to mind. Touch of roasted malts and chocolate in there. Belgian qualities are nice.

T: As with the aroma there is a pleasant belgian tone to the flavor of this beer. The chocolate seems more pronounced, dark fruits are not too strong but flavorful. Alcohol is well hidden.

M: Medium to full body with low-medium carbonation. The yeast gives it a good creaminess on the tongue. Finish is smooth.

Overall this beer has subtle qualities that all add up to a great finished product. May not blow you away with flavor, but this one is something that could be enjoyed all night. Love the artwork.

Photo of avalon07
3.63/5  rDev +0.3%
look: 3.75 | smell: 3.75 | taste: 3.5 | feel: 4 | overall: 3.5

A: Poured from a bottle to a goblet. Had a dark brown color with ruby tints and a clear texture. There was a small amount of tan-colored, foamy head that quickly dissipated. OK lacing.

S: A fair aroma of malt, yeast, and caramel. Not quite as powerful as you would expect.

T: Tasted of caramel, Belgian yeast, grassy hops, and malt. The advertised orange isn't particularly present. The grassy hops kind of throw the flavor out of balance, but mainly it's an uneven taste.

M: A good amount of carbonation with a smooth finish. Medium-bodied.

O: Not a terrible beer, but somewhat underwhelming. Drinkable, but could have been better.

Photo of Immortale25
3.81/5  rDev +5.2%
look: 3.75 | smell: 4 | taste: 3.75 | feel: 3.75 | overall: 3.75

Poured into a Funky Buddha Brewery snifter. No freshness date.

A- Pours a rubyish medium brown color with a 1/2 inch dark tan head that has a reddish tint to it and doesn't retain long before becoming a thick ring around the edge of the glass plus a large bubbly patch of surface foam. Semi-resilient lacing leaves a jagged ring behind on the glass.

S- Distinct Belgian yeast aroma with lots of candi sugar coming through and some mild roasted malt.

T- Sugary sweet malt flavor with decent spice but not as much yeast as in the nose. A bit of dark fruit but there's not much orange going on from the bitters and blood orange supposedly used in the brewing. Alcohol's pretty well concealed and the drink overall is quite smooth and pleasant.

M- A bit zesty from the spice and maybe the bitters. Medium carbonation and a body leaning toward the full side but not by much.

O- Decent but there are certainly better representations of the style. Also a bit disappointed in the lack of presence from the special ingredients. I admit that the only reason I went out of my way to obtain this bottle was for the label to add to my collection.

Photo of Roman5150
4.4/5  rDev +21.5%
look: 5 | smell: 4.25 | taste: 4.25 | feel: 4.75 | overall: 4.5

bottle into tulip

apearance: dark cloudy brown, 1 finger white head. The label is possibly the greatest/most offensive I have ever seen, good job Caldera.

smell: belgian yeast, caramel, coriander, plums, dark fruits, brown sugar

taste: Dark fruits, burnt caramel/sugary notes, lots of plum, the aftertaste is sweet and dry. Lots of grape notes that take an overall dominance, more like a grape soda than a wine taste though. Very well balanced and refreshing, no taste of alcohol.

mouthfeel: heavy carbonation, medium bodied

overall: Honestly this reminds me of a grape soda. Very good beer, and possibly an underrated one as well. I thought this was superbly balanced and for the style has a higher drinkability than some similar even authentic belgians. Will buy this again, even though I bought originally for the offensive logo, this turned out to be a very pleasant beer.

Photo of cvm4
3.75/5  rDev +3.6%
look: 3.75 | smell: 3.75 | taste: 3.75 | feel: 3.75 | overall: 3.75

A - Has a deep brown body with red hues. There's a one finger off-white head.

S - Brown sugar, dark fruits, malty and powdered cocoa.

T - Caramel malt and lightly burnt brown sugar to start off. Develops into a dark fruit show with some chocolate in the middle with the orange zest showing up at the end.

M - Medium bodied with just below medium carbonation. Very smooth and easy drinking, finishes wet.

O - For the price this was hard to pass up, even if it seemed a bit gimmicky. But, it's actually a decent brew, besides the messed up label art.

Photo of wordemupg
3.98/5  rDev +9.9%
look: 3.5 | smell: 4.25 | taste: 4 | feel: 3.5 | overall: 4

650ml bottle poured into tulip 9/5/13 cheers Rutager for the bottle

A if I was judging a book by its cover this ones a "5"for sure, the Devil pumping out a vasectomy by chewing through the Vas Deferens? fucked up to say the least. The beer has a reddish brown color with plenty of streams feeding a short lived finger of foam that leaves some random lace

S hazelnut and brown sugar with a little yeast and coco, I get the the orange after it warms, and it has some earthy notes, smells simple but I like it

T cola comes out and the brown sugars a little burnt, molasses I didn't smell and some anise and plum to go with it, smells good but I thought the nose was kicking ass

M medium bodied and very slick after the fact, bubbles give a little life but it could use a little more, no heat but slimy after the fact, orange peels nutty and lingers faintly

O I thought this one was a good example of the style and even though this was a want based purely on the label the beer itself was pretty good

I myself was sterilized by the devil when I hit puberty, I was told it was for the good of my species. I'm not bitter about it or anything like that I'm just disappointed with the artists interpretation of the event.

Photo of Rutager
4.15/5  rDev +14.6%
look: 4 | smell: 4.5 | taste: 4 | feel: 4.25 | overall: 4

Seriously fucked up label, yo! Love it.

Appearance. Pours a dark red-brown with a finger of thick off-white head.

Smell. Brown sugar, oranges, some dark fruits. Smells really nice actually!

Taste. Brown sugar and caramel malts, some sweet darker malt, oranges, chocolate and raisins.

Mouthfeel. Medium+ body, below medium very smooth carbonation.

Overall. Really surprised how enjoyable this one was. I figured it was just a novelty but it's a decent beer to say the least.

Photo of drpimento
4.61/5  rDev +27.3%
look: 4.25 | smell: 4.5 | taste: 4.75 | feel: 4.75 | overall: 4.5

Decent malty brew. Served with a nice sized, light tan head that slowly settled and a bit o' lace. Color is a clear, dark cherry brown. Aroma is roast, malt, fruit. Flavor's like nose, plus nutmeats. Body is superb and ditto carbonation. Finish is like flavor, not that long, but exceedingly drinkable. Killer brew!

Photo of DrDemento456
3.87/5  rDev +6.9%
look: 3.5 | smell: 4 | taste: 4 | feel: 4 | overall: 3.5

A - Pours a deep amber hue deep and dark with only a finger of head that quickly reduces to nothing.

S - Smells like a Belgium Brown ale with chestnuts and fruity yeasts. Maybe a mild twang of citrus bitterness.

T - Quite good the orange like zest is kind of bittering and mixes well with the typical fruity flavors of a Belgium ale. A slight touch of chocolate and brown nutty malts as well.

M - Medium and chewy yet easy to drink.

Overall totally worth the 6 dollars to try. A tasty Belgium brewed with blood orange.

Photo of tdm168
4/5  rDev +10.5%
look: 4 | smell: 4 | taste: 4 | feel: 4 | overall: 4

A - brown with a reddish hue; short-lived, soft, white head

S - bready, caramel, some alcohol

T - caramel, nutty, faint roasted, light bitter finish, some spiciness, warming alcohol

M - medium to full bodied, smooth, well carbonated

Not a bad beer. It's nutty and caramelly like a brown ale. The oranges don't come through for me. The alcohol is noticeable but doesn't detract from the flavor. I liked this but I don't like the Belgian label. They may have used Belgian yeast but it comes across more as a brown than a BSDA. Worth a try nonetheless.

Photo of brentk56
3.7/5  rDev +2.2%
look: 4 | smell: 4 | taste: 3.5 | feel: 4 | overall: 3.5

Appearance: Pours a clear russet color with a rocky head that leaves a fair amount of lacing

Smell: Brown bread, chocolate powder and orange

Taste: Tastes as it smells, with the bread and chocolate forward and the orange developing by mid-palate; adds some caramel sweetness, after the swallow though the finish has an odd, phenolic character

Mouthfeel: Medium body and moderate carbonation

Overall: Let's be honest, here - as a BSDA it is a pretty weak effort but I still rather enjoyed the beer; call it an English Brown with a twist and I would be inclined to rate it higher

Photo of Sammy
3.92/5  rDev +8.3%
look: 3.5 | smell: 4 | taste: 4 | feel: 3.5 | overall: 4

A different Belgian. Aging this several months, in Tim's ideal garage helped mellow the yeasty part, leading way to the blood orange taste. Cross-style. Earthy. Very good drinkability.Not too sweet, more like a "juice not from concentrate".

Photo of bbb099
3.98/5  rDev +9.9%
look: 4.5 | smell: 4 | taste: 4 | feel: 3.5 | overall: 4

A - Impressive, clear reddish amber color with a foamy white head.

S - Licorice, dark fruits, and cocoa. Almost imperial stout-like.

T - Smoky roasted malt and dark fruits with an orange-finish.

M - Low carbonation, full-bodied.

O - Decent aroma and taste. The orange didn't come through as strong as I thought, which is not necessarily a bad thing.

Photo of BilbosNuts
3.38/5  rDev -6.6%
look: 4 | smell: 3.5 | taste: 3.5 | feel: 2 | overall: 3.5

Poured from a 22oz bottle into a pint glass.

A: Pours a clear garnet color with some hints of cherry red coming through. It has a creamy one finger khaki white head that reduces to a thin film across the top. The beer appears pretty still, no carbonation is seen.

S: Sweet dark fruits are the backbone which include plums and dates. Phenolic smells come through along with belgian yeast.

T: The taste is pretty much the same as the aroma with lots of dark fruits, phenolic aspects, and the belgian yeast.

M: The feel is a little disappointing as it is on the thin side and has a somewhat watery feel. It is very still with no carbonation detected.

O: This beer was just slightly above average for me. The aroma and taste weren't bad, but could use some more depth. The feel was a letdown and could use some work. I picked this one up because of the artwork, but probably won't revisit it very often.

Photo of n2185
2.98/5  rDev -17.7%
look: 2 | smell: 4 | taste: 2.5 | feel: 3 | overall: 3

A: pours a dark mahogany with a finger of khaki head that recedes into a thin ring with no lacing.

S: some slight roasted malt aromas at first followed by bubblegum and candy sugar notes. Sweet, dark fruit aromas like plums follow. Slight spices mix with faint notes of chocolate and nuts for the finish. Smells pretty nice.

T: unfortunately the flavor doesn't live up to the aroma. Spices with some roasted malt and nutty flavors up front followed by a light Belgian candy sweetness. The finish has a light smoky bitterness and alcohol burn.

M: medium-light body with medium carbonation, this beers burn and bitterness keep it from being crisp.

O: not a bad beer, though I have to say that I bought it mostly because of its name. It smells good, but that's the most it has going for it.

Photo of russpowell
3.45/5  rDev -4.7%
look: 3.5 | smell: 3.5 | taste: 3.5 | feel: 3 | overall: 3.5

Got this ine from the Nashvillian (cheers John)

Pours chestnut/mahogany with a pinky of of tan head. Average head retention & good lacing

S: Rich dark fruit, chocolate. All fade as this warms

T: Follows the nose, dryness, apricot, pears & cherries with a touch of oakyness up front. I start picking some candi orange notes as this warms, a touch of juicy fruit gum on the edges, along with apple skins. Finishes dry with some orange rind bitterness showing up, some cocoa powder as well

MF: Medium bodied, fairly firm carbonation, a bit too dry for my liking

A decent shot at the style, just didn't pull a the way together for me, still very drinkable

Was hoping for some like an acholic version of Terry's Orange Chocolate (if you know what I'm talking about)

Having read other reviews, yeah what is up with that label? Not sure what that demon is is grabbing...

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Vas Deferens Ale from Caldera Brewing Company
82 out of 100 based on 120 ratings.