Bard's Gold - Bard's Tale Beer Company

Not Rated.
Bard's GoldBard's Gold

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BA SCORE
65
poor

63 Reviews
THE BROS
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Reviews: 63
Hads: 110
rAvg: 2.61
pDev: 23.75%
Wants: 1
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:
Beer added by: BEERchitect on 01-28-2009

No notes at this time.
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Reviews: 63 | Hads: 110
Photo of biboergosum
2.55/5  rDev -2.3%
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. (1,537 characters)

Photo of Huhzubendah
2.56/5  rDev -1.9%
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. (383 characters)

Photo of WestValleyIPA
2.58/5  rDev -1.1%
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. (787 characters)

Photo of Brad007
2.66/5  rDev +1.9%
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. (553 characters)

Photo of BeerFMAndy
2.7/5  rDev +3.4%
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. (1,161 characters)

Photo of farrago
2.72/5  rDev +4.2%
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) (732 characters)

Photo of darklordlager
2.74/5  rDev +5%
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. (482 characters)

Photo of woodychandler
2.76/5  rDev +5.7%
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 ... (1,856 characters)

Photo of oriolesfan4
2.78/5  rDev +6.5%
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?) (579 characters)

Photo of dbrauneis
2.79/5  rDev +6.9%
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. (898 characters)

Photo of StonedTrippin
2.79/5  rDev +6.9%
look: 3 | smell: 2.75 | taste: 2.75 | feel: 3 | overall: 2.75

i know a lot of the gluten free beer out there right now isnt gluten free at all, and thats not good for those who are seriously sick, not just those following the trend, so its nice to have this on the market as an alternative that actually is gluten free. the problem is, it just doesnt taste much like beer, and i dont think sorghum drinks really ever can. it looks really pale and fizzy, like carbonated apple juice, and has a sort of similar aroma, sweet and fruity, but this is not a good stand in for malted barley, and the difference is immediately evident. there doesnt appear to be much hops in here either, as it finishes long and sweet as well. its not bad, i mean, but it isnt beer. i am (obviously) not in the group that cant drink beer yet (fingers crossed i never am), so its hard to say how this stacks up to others like a red bridge or a glutenator from epic made with sweet potatoes, but i know that its not close enough to beer to be passable. its not a bad drink, not by any means, and i think it belongs in the market, but its also not really a beer... i dont know (1,086 characters)

Photo of BeanBone
2.84/5  rDev +8.8%
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. (797 characters)

Photo of metter98
2.84/5  rDev +8.8%
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 (770 characters)

Photo of mikebiewer
2.9/5  rDev +11.1%
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! (1,295 characters)

Photo of zeff80
2.93/5  rDev +12.3%
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. (622 characters)

Photo of EnojysAnyBeer
2.93/5  rDev +12.3%
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 (363 characters)

Photo of jdhilt
2.98/5  rDev +14.2%
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. (273 characters)

Photo of BeerWithMike
3.02/5  rDev +15.7%
look: 3.25 | smell: 3 | taste: 3 | feel: 3 | overall: 3

Sampled last night on 7/16/15. From the Bard's Tale Beer Company in Utica, New York. Wasn't this brewed in Minnesota at one time? Comes in a 12 ounce bottle and is "Gluten-Free". Bottle chilled down to 36 degrees F in my beer cooler and poured in to a glass-handled stein.

Brew pours a golden-honey in color with a thin white head. Actually some 'ring-like' lacing was seen when sipped that surprised me since the head was so small. Aroma is of some grains with a light hint of sorghum. Pretty much is said for the taste. Slightly dry and sweet finish. Has a different taste but wasn't that bad. Lighter-bodied with good carbonation. (634 characters)

Photo of Monsteruss
3.08/5  rDev +18%
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. (320 characters)

Photo of tdm168
3.1/5  rDev +18.8%
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. (440 characters)

Photo of SamKetchum
3.12/5  rDev +19.5%
look: 3.75 | smell: 3 | taste: 3.25 | feel: 2.75 | overall: 3

Fantastic Marketing, fun topics on bottle lids, such as “Do telemarketers have an evil laugh they do when they dial?” Only thing missing is the beer. It's smooth, it's golden. The body of the beer is extremely weak and it has a very submissive taste- leaving little to no aftertaste. (287 characters)

Photo of smcolw
3.15/5  rDev +20.7%
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. (421 characters)

Photo of williamherbert
3.15/5  rDev +20.7%
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. (670 characters)

Photo of BEERchitect
3.15/5  rDev +20.7%
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. (1,729 characters)

Photo of AgentMunky
3.15/5  rDev +20.7%
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. (1,048 characters)

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Bard's Gold from Bard's Tale Beer Company
65 out of 100 based on 63 ratings.