1. American Craft Beer Fest returns to Boston on May 29 & 30, featuring 640+ beers from 140+ brewers. Tickets are on sale now.

Bard's Gold - Bard's Tale Beer Company

Not Rated.
Bard's GoldBard's Gold

Educational use only; do not reuse.
BA SCORE
59
awful

108 Ratings
THE BROS
-
no score

(send 'em beer!)
Ratings: 108
Reviews: 63
rAvg: 2.38
pDev: 34.03%
Wants: 2
Gots: 3 | 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:
Beer added by: BEERchitect on 01-28-2009

No notes at this time.
View: Beers (1) | Events
Beer: Ratings & Reviews
Sort by:  Recent | Likes | High | Low | Top Raters
Ratings: 108 | Reviews: 63 | Display Reviews Only:
Photo of biboergosum
2.55/5  rDev +7.1%
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 WestValleyIPA
2.58/5  rDev +8.4%
look: 3 | smell: 2.5 | taste: 3 | feel: 3 | overall: 1.5

Poured from a 12 oz bottle into my Telegraph Brewing shaker glass. A minimal amount of head, less than 1/2 a finger which dies almost immediately. No lacing. A pretty decent generic amber color. Lot's of bubbles rising to the top, fizzy yellow beer anyone? Getting a crisp sort a sweet malt on the nose. For lack of a better description, smells like a mellow cheap blended Scotch. Some funky grain flavors going on. Very grainy, cereal, and once again, tastes like watery bad fizzy Scotch. Mouthfeel isn't bad. A nice crispness, kind of like sparkling wine. Finishes very dry. This review does NOT sound good, but for a gluten free beer, it sure beats the hell out of Redbridge and the like. Glad I'm not allergic to barley! Really hard to choke down a whole bottle. Took almost an hour.

Photo of Zorro
2.43/5  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 danpool
3.87/5  rDev +62.6%
look: 3 | smell: 3.5 | taste: 4 | feel: 4.5 | overall: 4

While this beer won't really stand up against some of the wheat/barley/rye containing beers, this is an excellent choice for celiacs and others who can't have gluten.

The pour on this beer is pretty...wait for it...poor. The head falls apart pretty quickly, but is more substantial than other GF beers I've tried.

The smell is a little sugary. Ok, it's a lot sugary. I would imagine this would be the smell you might encounter upon opening a fresh bag of brown sugar.

The predominant taste is also of molasses or brown sugar, which I don't completely disagree with, as one of my favorite brews before finding out I was a celiac was Ayinger's Celebrator Doppelbock; also a very sweet beer with heavy roasted sugar overtones.

Mouthfeel is very bubbly and light. Almost more like a Sprite than a beer.

Even though this beer may not be enjoyed by the typical beer snob (ah, memories of my pretentious pre-celiac self), I think the average gluten intolerant folks out there will find this to be a refreshing and very drinkable alternative to the other sorghum beers they've tried.

Photo of AgentMunky
3.15/5  rDev +32.4%
look: 4 | smell: 4 | taste: 2.5 | feel: 3.5 | overall: 3

Poured from a 12 ounce bottle into a pilsner glass.

A: Dull copper, slightly hazy, lots of bubbles, long-lasting head. Lots of lacing.

S: Smells like molasses and hops (or maybe another herb). Honestly, I like it a lot. There is a strange underscent of something slightly unpleasant, but the smell of molasses and beer overpowers it and distracts me.

T: Uh. Hmm...Sweet sorghum malt washes over the tongue carrying the molasses flavour, but then comes a watery grain taste, slightly bitter and not very nice. This is ameliorated the more I drink, but at best it tastes like beer. However, I consider this an accomplishment for a beer eschewing barley, wheat, rye, and oats. Aftertaste is slightly bitter before fading back into sweetness. It's not great, but it's not terrible. And apparently it's gluten-free?

M: It's pretty good. Thin and sweet; I enjoy the molasses quite a bit. No complaints here.

D: I enjoyed trying this one, but I probably wouldn't get it again. The sorghum is interesting and even fun, but is no replacement for grain.

Photo of omnigrits
3.2/5  rDev +34.5%
look: 3 | smell: 3 | taste: 3.5 | feel: 3 | overall: 3

I got this as a sample from a distributor.

Pours a clear amber-gold colour with plenty of carbonation but not much head. The aroma is, well, it's not unpleasant, it definitely smells like beer. Quite a lot of grain, not much hops. The taste follows on from that, but with an odd, sort of metallic undertone. It has a pleasantly bitter finish. A little bit over-carbonated for my liking and not a lot of weight in the body.

If, heaven forbid, I had to drink gluten-free beer I wouldn't turn my nose up at it, but I sure would miss everything else.

Photo of beerwolf77
2.4/5  rDev +0.8%
look: 3 | smell: 3 | taste: 2 | feel: 3 | overall: 2

Poured into my pint glass the beer is amber brown with about a finger of white head. No retention no lace.

The aroma is sweet and grassy. Like caramel coated grass clippings. I can't really pin point what I'm getting from this beer. Rather fruity though.

The flavor has a sharp gritty bitter bite. It's like sour malt with burnt caramel corn. Not something I really look for in my beers taste.

Medium to light body. Moderate carbonation.

Overall this is a unique beer for sure. I'm so glad I don't have food alergies that would require me to drink this.

Photo of BeerFMAndy
2.7/5  rDev +13.4%
look: 3.5 | smell: 3.5 | taste: 2.5 | feel: 2.5 | overall: 2

12 oz bottle poured into a Sierra Nevada imperial pint. Ingredients, nutrition facts, Packaged Date 11/30/2009 (Happy Birthday Beerwolf77 and I) listed on bottle.

A - Perfectly clear golden yellow with adequate carbonation rising from the nucleation point. It's also got a fair cream head with good retention and wisps of lace.

S - It's got a rather grainy aroma. The Sorghum is pretty distinguishable in this beer. Hints of resiny plastic and a foreign fruit-like scent. No real hop nose and it certainly doesn't smell like "beer" but it also doesn't smell bad.

T - Sorghum has been used much better than this to make Gluten-free beer. This one has a sharp, dry grain flavor that almost has a plastic taste. Again, no hops.

M - Dry, dry, dry! Did I mention Bard's Gold is dry? Oy. The finish lingers which doesn't work well when it tastes like plastic. Medium-bodied.

D - Drain-pour. Sorry Bard's, as someone who enjoys of all things incorporating Gluten, I wont be partaking in this beer ever again. If you have Celiac's I'm very sorry for you. Have a Lakefront New Grist instead. A fantastic example of Gluten-free beer. This, however, is not very good.

Photo of zeff80
2.93/5  rDev +23.1%
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 mikebiewer
2.9/5  rDev +21.8%
look: 3 | smell: 3 | taste: 3 | feel: 3 | overall: 2.5

I've got a video review if anyone wants to see what it looks like on my site at http://mikesbrewreview.com/review-of-bards-gold

Appearance:

Copper colored and freakishly clear and consistent in color. Fast carbonation with some really small and some larger bubbles. The head didn't really rise nor stick around.

Mouthfeel:

At first it seems thicker than it is but I'd give this a light feeling. The carbonation is nice on the tongue and throat.
Smell:

Very subtle caramel and hop floral aroma.

Taste:

Funny. Not in a bad way, just not the way you are expecting. The hops don't really come out so your left with this sweet weird bitter taste that I could only imagine a thick dust ball would taste like. Kind of musty.

Drinkability:

If I was on a gluten free diet I'd probably drink it, but I don't think I'd drink many of these.

Overall

I think its worth a try to give something else a shot, but I would definitely split the 6 pack with someone that is as curious as you are because it isn't what you are probably looking for in "beer". I do think this could make a good conversational piece for beer parties or tastings if you are into that sort of thing, but like I said, I'll probably never drink Bard's Gold Sorghum Beer again. Of course, unless something happens to me glutenins!

Photo of BeanBone
2.84/5  rDev +19.3%
look: 4 | smell: 2.5 | taste: 2.5 | feel: 4 | overall: 3

Appearance: An effervescent coppery-amber body capped by about a finger of whitish head that leaves excellent lacing.

Aroma: Sweet, biscuity, and caramel-like malt accompanied by some metallic tones.

Flavor: Biscuity, lightly grainy, and somewhat buttery malt accompanied by some bare hops and a metallic twang. As for balance, malt takes the spotlight. Grains and coppery metal in the finish.

Mouthfeel: Medium bodied and crisp with medium-high carbonation. Doesn't dry out in the finish.

Drinkability: Easily drinkable, but just a little too bland to really hold my interest.

Verdict: An interesting diversion, though something I'd have a hard time recommending to anyone not suffering from gluten intolerance. For those that do need to avoid gluten, this is certainly something to try out.

Photo of EnojysAnyBeer
2.93/5  rDev +23.1%
look: 3 | smell: 2.5 | taste: 3 | feel: 3.5 | overall: 3

A- Very clear body with an amber color and a small, filmy head

S- The smell is mostly musky and sweet. Caramel and apricot come to mind

T- The flavor is hardly detectable but is dominantly sweet with a mix of fruit flavors and hard candy

M- A bit fizzy and medium bodied

D- Fine enough to drink as beer but I certainly won't be buying another 6-pack for $9.36

Photo of oriolesfan4
2.78/5  rDev +16.8%
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 farrago
2.72/5  rDev +14.3%
look: 2.5 | smell: 3 | taste: 2 | feel: 3.5 | overall: 3.5

The head slightly off-white and crests at close to a finger, basic looking with little retention, no lacing. Metallic orange to pumpkin in color, crystal clear and completely transparent. The nose shows molasses, brown sugar and then apple, pear fruit, lemon juice and honey glazed bread, the hops versus malts dichotomy seems besides the point here. Medium-bodied, decent degree of carbonation, the first thing you think is that it tastes like a hard cider with a more grainy texture. Pear, green apple, white grape fruit, starts to turn bitter once it hits the back of your throat. Vaguest of grain, oats aspect, hard to casually understand why this would be grouped as a beer. That said, not disgusting or anything. (Gluten Free)

Photo of huricrane47
3.2/5  rDev +34.5%
look: 3 | smell: 3 | taste: 3 | feel: 3 | overall: 4

This beer was better than most light sorghum beers that i have had in the past. It almost reminded me of sparkling sake except that it had a very slight/mild hop flavor at the end. It was light, crisp, and easy to drink. I would recommend this to anyone that wanted a gluten free beer that was easy to drink. I also plan to compare it to a sparkling sake. Good sorghum beer.

Photo of darklordlager
2.74/5  rDev +15.1%
look: 2.5 | smell: 3.5 | taste: 2.5 | feel: 2.5 | overall: 2.5

Pours an apple cider colour, with a head to go with (bright active bubbles which quickly faded)

Smell is of light caramel sweetness and citric hops.

Taste is fruity up front (from the yeast?), some apple, a little bit of bitterness and then fades into a somewhat grainy aftertaste.

M-Medium-high carbonation, perhaps a bit too much. Keeps it from lingering too long on the tongue though, which I think I would find unpleasant.

D-Not something I would enjoy for flavour's sake.

Photo of Engineerrock
1.5/5  rDev -37%
look: 2 | smell: 2 | taste: 1 | feel: 3 | overall: 1

A) Lots of carbonation-very little foam, no lacing. Reminds me a little of champagne
S) not a lot of aroma-something a little sharp and crisp
T) Well, it would be great if you want to drink a bottle of blackstrap sorghum molasses. No lie there. When I drank this I was thinking it needed to go on cornpone.
M) Thin
D) Drank a third of it and could not finish.

Photo of GratefulBeerGuy
1.52/5  rDev -36.1%
look: 1 | smell: 1.5 | taste: 1.5 | feel: 2 | overall: 1.5

This is a pale amber color, fizzy...in that, you can actually hear it fizzing like soda.(the first red flag!) The head is thin to begin with and then it's just gone.

This has a strange sweet aroma much like pure malt before it goes in the wort, the rest is really hard to detect, but it's not beer related.

Well, i kept an open mind right up until the first sip, but my palate is not as nice. There is a malty flavor, but it's not a good one. It's hard to nail down any specific flavor's, which is a big problem. This folks, is simply not a beer to my palate.

DA....are you kidding?

Photo of Amalak
1.5/5  rDev -37%
look: 2 | smell: 2 | taste: 1.5 | feel: 1 | overall: 1

I had out of a bottle
A- Light gold in color. No real head and no lacing.
S- Had a sour fruit scent to it.
T- This beer tastes a lot like soap, no lie. And it consistently gets worse tasting with each sip. I actually got about a quarter of the way through and just gave up.

Photo of Monsteruss
3.08/5  rDev +29.4%
look: 3.5 | smell: 3 | taste: 3 | feel: 3.5 | overall: 3

The foam was light wheat/white in color and dissapated quickly. The color was a golden amber with mahogany and light honey highlights. Smell had a dominate aroma of fruity/sarghum, at least I believe thats what it was with hints of malt. Taste was the same as the smell. Mouthfeel - medium-bodied. Drinkability - Its ok.

Photo of Brad007
2.66/5  rDev +11.8%
look: 4 | smell: 3 | taste: 2.5 | feel: 2 | overall: 2.5

Pours a golden color with what appears to be ample carbonation. There's no head on this and it looks oddly like ginger ale.

Aroma is a bit spicy/sweet with sorghum as the main ingredient and it's well represented in the nose. Not much else.

Taste is sweet/sour with a ginger ale-like feel to it. Not very pleasant.

Mouthfeel is strange and unpleasant but just a tad bit tolerable. I'm not used to the style.

Not really something I'd drink ever again. I understand the reason for its' existence but I think Redbridge is more tolerable for this style.

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

Poured from 12 oz bottle into a pint glass.

Appearance: light gold to straw color. A finger of fizzy head which dissipated very quickly.

Smell: mild; sweet and grainy. There's an almost chalky aroma here; definitely not your traditional barley beer.

Taste: bizarrely enough, the taste I get is one of plastic. There are some hops and an interesting grain taste in there, but mostly I get a stale-water-stored-in-a-plastic-tub taste.

Mouthfeel: a light body with a medium-to-heavy level of carbonation.

Drinkability: between the flavor, smell and high carbonation, this is a hard one to force down.

I love the idea of this beer: a good beer in this vein could be great for someone with celiac disease or another barley or wheat allergy. This beer, however, is not it. If my dietary restrictions limited me to this or no beer, I'll have a glass of water or a diet coke.

Photo of emerge077
3.55/5  rDev +49.2%
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 smcolw
3.15/5  rDev +32.4%
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 williamherbert
3.15/5  rDev +32.4%
look: 3 | smell: 3 | taste: 3 | feel: 3.5 | overall: 3.5

Color is a clear yellow with a bubbly white head, like Pepsi. Looks almost exactly like ginger ale, including bubbles on the inside of the glass. Weird.

The smell is an ultra-sweet, sugary malt, moreso than even an English ale. It even smells like ginger ale and a white wine. Unusual, but not "bad."

The tate is a different sugary sweet taste, like a white wine, combined with sweet brown-sugary English malts. I actually don't hate it. Butterscotch and toffee in the aftertaste.

The feel is smooth and buttery. A nice, silky texture. It's like a malty, sugary white wine all the way around. For a sorghum beer it's actually really drinkable. I'd take it over a Bud.

Bard's Gold from Bard's Tale Beer Company
59 out of 100 based on 108 ratings.