Bard's Gold - Bard's Tale Beer Company

Not Rated.
Bard's GoldBard's Gold

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BA SCORE
59
awful

104 Ratings
THE BROS
-
no score

(send 'em beer!)
Ratings: 104
Reviews: 62
rAvg: 2.37
pDev: 35.02%
Wants: 2
Gots: 2 | FT: 0
Brewed by:
Bard's Tale Beer Company visit their website
Minnesota, United States

Style | ABV
American Adjunct Lager |  4.60% ABV

Availability: Year-round

Notes/Commercial Description:
No notes at this time.

(Beer added by: BEERchitect on 01-28-2009)
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Ratings: 104 | Reviews: 62 | Display Reviews Only:
Photo of Thorpe429
1.53/5  rDev -35.4%
look: 3.5 | smell: 2 | taste: 1 | feel: 2 | overall: 1.5

Thanks to Huhzubendah for gifting this one. Served in a Bruery tulip.

Pours a clear light copper color with a very short head that dissipates quickly, leaving just a bit of a collar with some big bubbles. The nose is pretty off-putting and smells mostly of rice with a bit of staleness. Flavor is full of adjunct character. Yuck. Light body and crisp carbonation. Dry, off-putting finish. Why do I use "off-putting" so much? That sums up this "beer." Why would you create a gluten-free beer and emphasize the gluten-free part? Maybe some hop or yeast character. Yuck. Sick. Boo.

Photo of metter98
2.83/5  rDev +19.4%
look: 2.75 | smell: 3 | taste: 2.75 | feel: 2.5 | overall: 3

A: The beer is crystal clear dark golden yellow in color and has a moderate amount of visible carbonation. It poured with a quarter finger high bright white head consisting of large bubbles that died down rather quickly, leaving a collar around the edge of the glass, and eventually completely fading away.
S: Moderate aromas of sorghum are present in the nose.
T: Just like the smell, the taste has flavors of sorghum. No bitterness is perceptible.
M: It feels light-bodied on the palate and has a moderate amount of carbonation.
O: This beer doesn't have any exciting aromas or flavors but is relatively easy to drink for a gluten-free beer because it doesn't have any rancid flavors. Once you get accustomed to the sorghum, it's not that bad.

Serving type: bottle

Photo of BEERchitect
3.15/5  rDev +32.9%
look: 3 | smell: 3 | taste: 3 | feel: 3.5 | overall: 3.5

This Gluten-Free beer, like many is made from Sorghum. Here's a bit more information from the brewery:

"Ingredients: Sorghum, yeast, hops and water--contains no wheat, barley, rye or oats and is naturally gluten-free

Sorghum is a genus of numerous species of grasses, some of which are raised for grain that can be used in the production of beer. Sorghum has been used in making beer for centuries in other parts of the world and is naturally gluten-free.

Taste: Rich and refreshing. Body: Medium. Bitterness: Low (20.5 IBUs). Aroma: Floral Color: Amber (SRM 11). Calories: 155 calories per 12-oz serving Carbohydrates: 14.2 carbohydrates per 12-oz serving. Hops: Imported Hallertauer Hersbrucker, Imported Tettenang. Malt: Proprietary malted sorghum. Yeast: German Lager Yeast (Strain #3470). Serving Temperature: 39º- 45ºF"

The webiste also descibes this beer as an American Lager, which I find somewhat problematic because of its unorthodox base ingredient.

Otherwise the beer fares about as well as most other sorghum beers with a heavy emphasis on a caramelly, buttery flavor. Lighter in body than the 'medium' character suggests. I got no real hop aroma or flavor, but only a bitterness that struggles to the 20 IBU's described. The beer remains quite carbonated despite failing to form much of a head or to retain it-- par for the course because of the relatively low protein and starch content. A minerally quality comes though in the water profile that make th flavors a bit abrasive. This beer does seem to be attenuated better than most and leaves a crip, dry finish rather than the tacky residue as with most. Most typical beer drinkers won't follow this one very far but it was quite drinkable for the style.

Photo of largadeer
1.5/5  rDev -36.7%

Photo of biboergosum
2.55/5  rDev +7.6%
look: 2.5 | smell: 2.5 | taste: 2.5 | feel: 3 | overall: 2.5

12oz bottle, time to try this most venerable of gluten-free beers available in Alberta.

This beer pours a clear, medium tinted golden amber colour, with a half finger of loud bubbly, and mostly fizzy dirty white head, which disappears in a near instant, leaving neither lace nor impression on this reporter.

It smells of semi-sweet, vegetal malt, with an alien earthiness that must be the sorghum, there, English, white grape juice, stale applesauce, and a wet cardboard essence right where one might be expecting something, oh, I dunno, hoppy? The taste is more or less just an extension in the same odd graininess - quite sweet, still, and 'malty', and well, like brown sugar, overripe mixed grapes, free-radical butter, mild plastic band-aid covers, and bitter tea leaves, is the best I can come up with.

The carbonation is average, and a tad prickly, even, at times, the body a somewhat agreeable medium weight, and as smooth as the tugging cloyingness will allow. It finishes with a lingering thin molasses/reduced brown sugar sweetness, buffered somewhat by that unfamiliar earthy, strangely astringent character from the earlier acts.

While displaying more beer-adjacent characteristics than practically all the other barley and wheat-free beers I've thus far subjected my gluten-loving and -tolerant self to, I can't get over the weird edge that the sole use of sorghum (I assume) imparts here, in its starring role. A good try, and probably acceptable with a strong dose of cognitive dissonance, but not for me, not for me.

Photo of emerge077
3.55/5  rDev +49.8%
look: 3.5 | smell: 3.5 | taste: 3.5 | feel: 3 | overall: 4

Haven't noticed this sorghum beer around Illinois yet, found it on a recent trip through Wisconsin at Le Cork in Mt. Horeb.

Into a stange glass right from the fridge, it has some puffy foam at first that billows above the rim. It's texture is firm but breaks apart in chunks after the first sip. It's a goldenrod yellow with steady trails of CO2. The smell has a touch of apple and minerals, reminding me of a Berliner Weisse somehow. Flavor is a little buttery with a note of apple that fades quickly into a dry finish. The sorghum has a bit of dustiness to it. There was a low level of bitterness, the label does list hops as an ingredient. Crisp with an initial bite, then it rapidly fades away.

More flavor than a macro for sure, maybe more of an acquired taste though. Certainly a godsend for those with Celiac's.

Photo of zeff80
2.95/5  rDev +24.5%
look: 3 | smell: 2.5 | taste: 3 | feel: 3.5 | overall: 3

Grabbed one in a build a sixer section.

A -Poured a bubbly, translucent, orange/bronze color with a small, khaki-colored head. It left no lacing at all.

S - It smelled oddly of corn and fruitiness. It's really hard to describe but it smells unlike most beers.

T - Very sweet upon first sip with a pear/apple flavors. As it warmed the sweetness mellowed and a corn and grain taste emerged.

M - It was crisp and sharp with a smooth finish. A light bodied ale.

D - The first couple sips had me thinking drain pour but it improved significantly. This is my 4th or 5th Gluten-Free beer and it has to be the best I've had.

Photo of NeroFiddled
3.43/5  rDev +44.7%
look: 4 | smell: 3 | taste: 3.5 | feel: 3.5 | overall: 3.5

Hmmm. Interesting. I'm not sure why this is listed here as a Fruit / Vegetable beer because it's not. It's simply beer made with sorghum instead of barley. And that's nothing new, Guinness used to be made in Africa with sorghum. Anyway, that's the thing here, it "CONTAINS NO WHEAT, BARLEY, RYE OR OATS" so it works for people with celiac's disease and other allergies. That said, I have to question how there can be "NO" barley involved as it's contract brewed. Perhaps the sorghum is all bagged. Or, maybe F.X. Matt made some other special arrangements to avoid any mixing of malt residue. Or perhaps in a several hundred barrel batch it's too minimal to matter.

Anyway, as far as gluten-free or "Celiac" beers go, it's not bad. I've had worse. It's got a good balance with backing bitterness and some floral and spicy hops; and a slightly elevated carbonation level that helps as well. And that's important because sorghum tends to kind of stick in the mouth. It's sweetish with a kind of candyish edge, and it lingers - you can even smell that in the nose as well. The spicy hops and zesty carbonation then help to cut through that and cleanse the palate.

However, what we're talking about here is, in fact, a sorghum beer, so none of that can be faulted. It is what it is. And in this particular case, it's got a caramelish edge to it, which is nice. I don't know if something was done to the grain before hand, or if that was just picked up in the kettle, but it gives it a little bit more character; and I think it works well with the grain.

If I was unable to drink regular beer, I'd certainly enjoy this one more often!

Photo of WVbeergeek
1.98/5  rDev -16.5%
look: 3 | smell: 3.5 | taste: 1.5 | feel: 1.5 | overall: 1.5

Pours a honey golden amber hue with a fine bright white head billowing nicely with the initial pour, however head retention isn't this beer's strong suit. Aroma smells like a booze ridden brandy or something higher in alcohol, which doesn't make sense at all but that's what I'm getting out of this beer. A slightly sour tobacco note with some fruity highlights to it maybe ripened apple and cherry. Flavor is extraordinarily horrid, tastes like cough syrup drizzled with sweet maple sugar. Not the worst liquid I've ever drank but as far as beer goes this fuckin' sucks, stick to the British specialty beers or good old Redbridge from AB if you wanna cure your Celiac's disease. I could finish it but there's just nothing keeping me going toward the finish line. It would be self abuse otherwise the way this one hits the palate with faded carbonation makes the bad things just remain stagnant on my palate. Overall I think I expressed how I feel about this beer, just don't go there unless it's a health issue with no other options for something remotely beery.

Photo of TheManiacalOne
3.28/5  rDev +38.4%
look: 3 | smell: 3 | taste: 3.5 | feel: 3.5 | overall: 3

Poured from a 12oz bottle into a US tumbler pint glass.

A: The beer is a deep gold color with a short white head that fades very quickly and leaves a thin lace on the glass.

S: The aroma is of light caramelized malts, spice, grain and a touch of hops.

T: The taste is sweet and bready up front with flavors of caramel, spices and a little fruit. The malt character is hearty but not too heavy. The hops presence is mild but brings a little bit of balance. The after-taste is slightly sweet.

M: Smooth and crisp, light-to-medium body, medium carbonation, finish is clean.

D: A little tasty, goes down ok, not too filling, mild kick, I wasn't expecting too much from this beer and although it wasn't too bad, there also wasn't anything about this beer that made it good enough for me to want to drink consistently.

Photo of XmnwildX12
2.25/5  rDev -5.1%

Photo of mendvicdog
1.5/5  rDev -36.7%

Photo of drabmuh
1.9/5  rDev -19.8%
look: 2.5 | smell: 2.5 | taste: 1.5 | feel: 2 | overall: 2

Thanks to Huhzubendah for sharing this with me, I think.

Beer is headless, almost no carbonation, yellow, clear, no lacing, doesn't even really look like beer.

Aroma is vegetal and sweet with this kind of harsh boiled chlorophyll sort of aroma...not inviting.

I don't just want to say the beer was bad, because it was, I have specific objections to it. Things like, the finish was really solventy, almost acetone, the forward was oddly cloyingly sweet, the beer is a train wreck. You can't make a decent beer without good grains, if you can't drink beer, try Saki.

Photo of smcolw
3.18/5  rDev +34.2%
look: 3 | smell: 3 | taste: 3.5 | feel: 3.5 | overall: 2.5

Light off-white head. Lasts at a single bubble level. Light lace; it tends to slide down the glass. Clear, light amber.

Strong sweet grainy smell. Reminds me very much of the British milds available in bottle in America.

Almost like a scotch ale...it also has elements of Scotch itself--notable alcohol and a dry-ish finish. There's a hop bite at the end. Not as bad as I expected--it's certainly not a lawn mower beer.

Photo of oriolesfan4
2.75/5  rDev +16%
look: 3.5 | smell: 3 | taste: 2.5 | feel: 3 | overall: 2.75

Apparently the first "gluten free" beer in America... I could care less about that but I do enjoy trying new beers. Pours a light golden color, little wisp of head. Aroma is pear/apple like. Taste is unique, thats for sure. Taste is medium bodied, quite an odd taste to it I can't put my finger on.. sort of a mixed pear and subdued hop taste. Finish is very unique and a bit dry. If you're a health nut and don't like gluten I guess it'd be a good beer but for the average beer drinker I'd pass on this one.. much better tasting beers out there (I guess good beer needs gluten?)

Photo of wrightst
2.5/5  rDev +5.5%

Photo of dbrauneis
2.79/5  rDev +17.7%
look: 3 | smell: 2.75 | taste: 2.75 | feel: 3 | overall: 2.75

A: Pours a clear medium yellow in color with light amounts of active visible carbonation rising slowly from the bottom of the glass and some faint straw yellow highlights. The beer has a half finger tall foamy white head that reduces to a couple of small patches of very thin film and a thin ring at the edges of the glass. Light amounts of lacing are observed.

S: Moderate aromas of sorghum grainy/grassiness.

T: Upfront there is a moderate flavor of sorghum and a hint of graininess - there are also hints of caramel and buttery notes. Very light hints of grassy hops which imparts just the slightest hint of bitterness which fades almost immediately.

M: Light bodied with a moderate amount of carbonation.

O: The flavor of sorghum is not hidden but that is okay if you don't mind it or enjoy it - pretty decent for a gluten-free beer but not the most exciting or interesting beer out there.

Photo of woodychandler
2.78/5  rDev +17.3%
look: 3.5 | smell: 2.5 | taste: 3 | feel: 2 | overall: 2.75

I had purchased this a while back, thinking that perhaps an article on gluten-free beers might be in the offing. When I could not find a taker, the beers got shunted to the side. I had a colleague who has issues with gluten and she was always curious about beers that were gluten-free. I usually eschew them since I am not gluten-intolerant and prefer to leave them for people who are. In the interim, I am purging my massive backlog of bottles this summer and lo and behold! this one popped up. They will now be part of The Great Bottle Purge of the Summer of 2014.

From the bottle: "The Original Sorghum Malt Beer"; "Discuss it over a Bard's"; "Contains No Wheat, Barley, Rye or Oats"; "Gluten-Free"; "Beer Made From Sorghum".

From the underside of the cap: "Can the inventor of the ukelele be charged with crimes against humanity? Discuss it over a Bard's".

I popped the cap and the neck suddenly filled with a cap of foam. Calming time! Even with the calming and a gentle pour, I got a pseudo-cascade and a lot of foaming action. It settled into three dense fingers of French Vanilla-colored -white head that slowly dropped, leaving nice lacing in its wake. Color was, indeed, gold (SRM = 5), so points for truth in advertising, plus it had NE-quality clarity. Nose was back to the now-familiar apple vinegar sharpness. It is really making me glad that I do not have Celiac and so this can be an experiment, rather than a way of life. Mouthfeel was thin, watery and spritzy like seltzer. Taste was of apple vinegar, but it was not as pronounced or as sharp as in some of the others in this adventure. Finish was kind of bland and dull and now I cannot decide which is worse - sharp and memorable or bland and dull. I would choose this over some of the others simply because its pungency was somehow lessened. Talk about damning with faint praise ...

Photo of LXIXME
3.25/5  rDev +37.1%

Photo of Huhzubendah
2.55/5  rDev +7.6%
look: 3.5 | smell: 2.5 | taste: 2.5 | feel: 2.5 | overall: 2.5

The beer is slightly hazy and appears a light orange color. The aroma offers some sweet, malty fruit, with a hint of candied oranges. Light toffee in the flavor, with some biscuit malt in the taste as well. Sweet fruit is present throughout. Light to medium in body, with moderately low carbonation. A decent choice for those who must have gluten free beer, though not my cup of tea.

Photo of Zorro
2.42/5  rDev +2.1%
look: 3 | smell: 2.5 | taste: 2.5 | feel: 2.5 | overall: 2

Clear amber colored beer with a small white colored head.

Smells sweet and grainy with a strange scent that must be the sorghum. Smell of mixed tobacco and tea. Smells strange.

Starts out sweet and grainy with a grain husk flavor and a fair amount of bitterness. Slight caramel flavor and some astringency. This tastes a little weird.

Mouthfeel is OK.

Drinkability isn't so great. For sorghum beer it isn't bad. For beer though this doesn't raise to the level of Budweiser.

Photo of jdhilt
2.98/5  rDev +25.7%
look: 3.5 | smell: 3 | taste: 3 | feel: 2.5 | overall: 3

Pours a two finger white head that fades instantly leaving no lace. Crystal clear amber color. Fizzy carbonation and light-medium bodied. Corn/grainy nose. Flavor is sweet corn and some caramel. Squeaky clean finish. $2.05 for a 12oz bottle from Colonial Spirits Acton, MA.

Photo of tdm168
3.1/5  rDev +30.8%
look: 3 | smell: 3 | taste: 3 | feel: 4 | overall: 3

Pours a dark gold with loose, bubbly, dish soap-like head that quickly disappears. The nose is sweet, sugary, and grainy. The taste is sweet, fruity with hints of apple, and has notes of caramel. The mouthfeel is light to medium bodied, lightly carbonated, and smooth.

For a beer made from sorghum it's not bad, a little sweet at times, but not bad. This isn't something that I would go out of my way to get, but it wasn't bad to try once.

Photo of sendbeer
1/5  rDev -57.8%

Photo of Latarnik
2.75/5  rDev +16%

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Bard's Gold from Bard's Tale Beer Company
59 out of 100 based on 104 ratings.