Lolita - Goose Island Beer Co.

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1,785 Ratings
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Ratings: 1,785
Reviews: 307
rAvg: 4.13
pDev: 9.93%
Wants: 244
Gots: 595 | FT: 58
Brewed by:
Goose Island Beer Co. visit their website
Illinois, United States

Style | ABV
American Wild Ale |  9.00% ABV

Availability: Rotating

Notes & Commercial Description:
Beer added by: robbyc1 on 10-29-2009

Belgian-style ale aged in French oak Cabernet Sauvignon barrels. Each barrel receives 50+ pounds of fresh raspberries. Spontaneous secondary fermentation in the barrels. Aged 8 months or more.
Beer: Ratings & Reviews
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Ratings: 1,785 | Reviews: 307
Reviews by mattsdenney:
More User Reviews:
Photo of BEERchitect
4/5  rDev -3.1%
look: 4 | smell: 4 | taste: 4 | feel: 4 | overall: 4

Belgian influence of the most artful kind plays out in the wooden vats of Good Island. A raspberry ale introduced to a slew of wild yeast and micro flora produces extreme complexity and dynamic flavor.

Mildly hazed with hues of plumb red and peach sculpt the impressions of fruit even with its appearance. Fizzy head character rises quickly, fueled by high carbonation, but then quickly falls as well. With no real lacing action, I would have preferred better foam character, but the sharp acidity to come would have nothing to do with that.

Tart aromas of fresh and lightly under ripened raspberries fill the nose with slight dominance above complementary notes of wine must, lime-like acidity, vinous white Zinfandel, green apple cider, white grapes, mild sulfur, white wine vinegar, musty sea air, and weathered sawdust. Low in sweetness, there persists a nutty, pithy, and vanilla like scent that reminds me of almond paste.

Stronger raspberry character comes to life in the flavor profile, but not without further complementary flavors of dried cherries, tart (shy of sour) vinous white zin wines, mineral salts and briny yeast that come together like sea water and sea shells. Again, the light sweetness of vanilla and almond seem like a rhythmic dance throughout the must and tartness that power ahead. Low in bitterness, only a mild taste of wood and cheddar create sharpness to complement the low spicy phenols, wood tannin and cinnamon nuances. Old sun dried wood, mild sherry and balsamic notes provide a succulent taste that keeps me coming back with rather rapid succession.

Light bodied due to it's spritzy carbonation, strong acidic, and highly attenuated malt character, but not without a calm velvety powder texture from wood tanning and soft dextrin and seemingly light nutty oils. Sharp in finish, the dryness of wood and alcohol play out in a very refreshing but highly acidic aftertaste.

With so much tart fruitiness and dry sweetness, this beer is ideally suited to win over lovers of all sorts of wines and I find notes of minerally Greek whites, robust Chilean merlots, and simplified white zinfindales sprinkled all over this beer.

Photo of joe1510
4.25/5  rDev +2.9%
look: 4.25 | smell: 4.25 | taste: 4.25 | feel: 4.25 | overall: 4.25

22oz Bomber

Bottled: 11/12/11

Lolita is a flat out beautiful ruby hued beer with near perfect clarity. The ruby body is of gem quality and glows to no end. The raspberries have really made this beer beautiful. Tiny carbonation bubbles rush up the glass from everywhere and keep the thin crown alive. Lace is patchy here and there.

This beer is just over three years old and I could still smell the raspberries from two feet away when the top was popped. Raspberries burst from the glass, seeds and stems as well, freshly picked. Lactic qualities compliment the fruit, adding faint yogurt notes, while acetic acid brightens it up with some well integrated white vinegar. Good depth and complexity with a nice sweet and sour play.

The flavor profile follows the nose in stride. Raspberries are still big, bright, and bold. They're so fresh and real they have that sweet/sour play which when combined with the bright acidity really pops. The flavor does bring a good dose of woodiness from the barrels and a rich wine note that's a little tannic, astringent. Bueno!

The body is light and effervescent with carbonation that's still bright after these few years. The acidity bites at the inside of the cheeks and leaves some minor heartburn in it's wake if you're not careful, or old. The finish is nice and dry. Well built and highly drinkable.

Lolita is a gem of a beer. This batch is holding up like a champ. The raspberry is still vibrant, the acidity is bright, and the sheer enjoyment is sky high. I have always been a fan of this beer, this is the oldest I've drank and it holds up well.

Photo of tectactoe
4.16/5  rDev +0.7%
look: 4 | smell: 4.25 | taste: 4.25 | feel: 4 | overall: 4

2011 vintage. Big thanks to Mike for the share. Upon pouring, I'd say that Lolita is a dense shade of copper and nothing more, but holding it up to the sunlight reveals a nice ruby red color that beams through the entire beer. The fizzy white head doesn't last for long, but seems pretty volatile and active while it's here. No lacing left behind, but that's almost to be expected for this style.

The aroma is packed with tart raspberries, cherries, and heavy grape skins - a cloud of vinous notes crawls over everything, packed with some wet wood and heavy tannin. Yeast and musty funk are very prominent here, as well - there's no hiding the Brett in this one. White wine vinegar notes start to peek through as it warms up, getting stronger all the way through. Very fruity, but definitely leaning more towards tart than sweet, which is usually a good thing.

Following the aroma closely, the taste leads off with lots of ripe, tart raspberries right out of the gate. And when I say tart, I mean puckeringly so. The fruit profile is quite nice; raspberry, cherry, strawberry, grape... They all have their own impact, yet blend together so well. Barrel notes are heavy and do a great job of backing up the fruit; barrel, oak, light faint vanilla, and some dry wine notes.

The funk is no stranger, either. Clumpy yeast elevates big-time in the aftertaste with some cheesy, musty, wet-barnyard funk. It goes without saying that the finish also contains a decent amount of fading raspberry tartness and a touch of barrel. The light mouth feel and the crisp snap of the heavy carbonation makes this beer delicately drinkable.

I was salivating from start to finish from the pungently tart aroma and the flavor definitely helped to quench my senses. A very nice sour brew from Goose Island with plenty of fruitiness that never really comes off as sweet; rather, it remains mostly tart and juicy for the entire duration of the beer. Barrel was heavy yet subtle enough to let the fruit work its magic. Great beer all around.

Photo of lordofthewiens
4.11/5  rDev -0.5%
look: 3.75 | smell: 4 | taste: 4.25 | feel: 4.25 | overall: 4

This beer was a garnet color with a medium-sized white head. The head dissipated quickly.

Aroma of sweet fruit, oak, and red wine.

Taste of raspberries and red wine. A lot of oak tannins.

Sweet/tart mouthfeel. A good beer to drink. The only drawback, for me, was the price. $17 for the bottle seemed a little steep.

Photo of warnerry
3.97/5  rDev -3.9%
look: 3.5 | smell: 4 | taste: 4 | feel: 4 | overall: 4

Bottle dated 12/4/10 poured into a tulip

A - Pours a clear red-tinged with maybe one finger of off-white head. Head fades, but maintains a nice collar. No lacing.

S - Tart raspberries and quite bit of earthy funk. The red wine and oak characters from the barrels come through pretty nicely as well.

T - Taste is quite tart up front, with a big raspberry presence. No sweetness t speak of. The funk become prominent early on and continues throughout the taste. Like in the smell, the red wine notes come through midway. Finishes with a nice combination of earthy funk and red wine. I am pleasantly surprised with the amount of funk.

M - Relatively light bodied, with good carbonation and a very pleasant dry finish. There is definitely a red wine presence, but not much in the way of tannins. Finishes earthy, tart and dry, but not overwhelmed by any of those characteristics.

O - A good wild ale. I think I enjoyed Madame Rose slightly more, and haven't had Juliet yet. Would like more tartness, but the amount of funk here is pretty nice.

Photo of mverity
3.71/5  rDev -10.2%
look: 4.25 | smell: 3.75 | taste: 3.5 | feel: 4 | overall: 3.75

Poured into wide champagne flute. Slightly hazy peachy amber color with tons of bubbly whitish pink head that faded immediately. Some bubbles cling to the side of the glass within the beer. Aroma is of sweet raspberry and dry woody wine. Taste is exactly the same as the aroma. Quite sweet. Decent, but nothing outstanding about this beer. High carbonation makes this fun to drink. I enjoy the bubbly feeling. Body is light, borderline thin.

Photo of Billolick
4.12/5  rDev -0.2%
look: 3.5 | smell: 4 | taste: 4.5 | feel: 3.5 | overall: 4

$16.99 (!) for the bomber @ DeCicco's in Ardsley, NY. "Bottled 12/4/10" on the label.
So this is young and fresh and the label is telling me it "Develops in the bottle for up to 5 years" Wish I could wait, but that aint gonna happen...

Pours red/ruby hued, clear, the head is exceedingly quick to vanish, no lacing left on the glass.

Fruity nose, berries come to mind.

Moderatly tart, plenty of raspberry, minimal funk, perhaps that will develop with age, I'll likely never know. Some subtle woody flourishes.

Brightly flavorful, fresh and fruity. Refreshing and cleansing of the palate. I like beer like this. This one is a bit sedate, a bit underwhelming, especially for the price. But still interesting and enjoyable, went great with some creamy cheese and toasted nuts.

A nice splurge, especially for those who enjoy the style.

Photo of randomgnarkill
4.48/5  rDev +8.5%
look: 4.5 | smell: 4.5 | taste: 4.5 | feel: 4.25 | overall: 4.5

Great smell. The Raspberry flavor is key to the sour/wild taste. Color is a nice red with little carbonation. Oak taste is there very little.

Photo of bsp77
4.35/5  rDev +5.3%
look: 4 | smell: 4 | taste: 4.5 | feel: 4.5 | overall: 4.5

Serving glass: Poured from bottle into Tulip.

Appearance: Orangish-pink with thin light tan head.

Smell: Tart raspberries, apple cider, vinegar, oak and pepper.

Taste: The taste mirrors the smell, but the Cabernet Sauvignon oak barrels come through more strongly, giving this a definite wine-like character. Raspberries are also pretty dominant, but not as tart as expected. Some lemon as well. Overall, more peppery and dry than tart.

Feel: Moderate carbonation, fairly light body, extremely dry finish.

Overall: Certainly not one of the most mouth puckering Wild Ales out there, but I am not sure why so many think that is a bad thing. This is actually well balanced from all the components and I love the wine-like character it has. Plus this is much more refreshing than any red wine.

Photo of Franziskaner
4.19/5  rDev +1.5%
look: 3.75 | smell: 4 | taste: 4.5 | feel: 4 | overall: 4

Amber in color and very cloudy in complexion. Significant carbonation activity is noticeable. Strong aroma of tart raspberries and Brett is present. The taste is initially tart raspberries and the sourness definitely becomes more prominent at the back of the palate when the Brett kicks in full force. The mouth is highly carbonated and sticky.

Photo of dogfishandi
4.04/5  rDev -2.2%
look: 3.75 | smell: 4 | taste: 4.25 | feel: 4 | overall: 3.75

2013 vintage.

Pours a nice amber reddish color, head fizzled out almost immediately.

Aroma is full of fresh jamy raspberries. Hints of wine barrel. Very nice raspberry aroma, but a bit one dimensional in that aspect.

Initially i got quite A bit of bandaid and barnyard like Brett funk. Surprisingly not very sour. A nice fresh raspberry comes in. Defiantly some wine flavors come in towards the finish with just a slight hint of a wine like alcohol.

Very highly carbonated.

I was really hoping for quite a bit more sourness. Has a decent tartness, but really lacking that palate coating acidity I love in my sours. Raspberry and wine barrel flavors are done nicely though.

Photo of MattyG85
4.45/5  rDev +7.7%
look: 4 | smell: 4.5 | taste: 4.5 | feel: 4.25 | overall: 4.5

Poured from a 765 ml bottle into a Goose Island Tulip glass. 2013 Vintage bottled on June 28th, 2013.

Appearance: Pours a slightly hazy pinkish reddish amber with a lot of bubbles. Slight one finger of off white head that quickly fades away. Lacing is pretty light.

Smell: A sour, funky, yeasty, and fruity aroma with big hints of raspberries, cherry, and Brett. Belgian yeast with big hints of funky wild yeast and Brett. Strong red wine barrel presence with hints of tart cherries, wood, oak, and vinegar. Also some strong fruit hints of raspberries, grape, cranberry, and green apples. Sweet hints of sugar. Malt presence with some hints of caramel. Hop presence is very light. A very good tart wild aroma.

Taste: Like the nose hints at, a sour, tart, funky, and yeasty taste with big fruity red wine notes. Belgian yeast with a big upfront taste of wild yeast and funky Brett. Big red wine barrel presence with notes of tart and sour cherries, oak, wood, vinegar, and acid. Other fruit notes include raspberries, green apples, grape, and cranberry. Sweet taste of sugar and some caramel malt. Subtle hop presence. Has some of that "band aid" like characteristic. Overall a really good sour and funky taste.

Mouthfeel: Medium bodied with a medium to high level of carbonation. Tart, spritzy, and fairly acidic. Slightly syrupy but finishes dry. Alcohol is masked fairly well.

Overall: A really good sour/wild ale. Big taste of funky yeast and red wine fruits.

Photo of TKEbeerman
3.87/5  rDev -6.3%
look: 3.5 | smell: 4 | taste: 4 | feel: 4 | overall: 3.5

Bottled the same day as every other bottle and poured into my Duvel tulip.

A: Poured into my tulip, this brew pours a rusty Autumn orange with a head that vanishes in thin air. Nothing impressive from this bottle.

S: The aroma is heavy in the raspberries and candy sugar. The nose is not funky at all, and the tartness compliments it's sweet aromas.

T: The tartness comes out strong (compared to the nose) in the flavor. The raspberries add a fresh backbone. The finish reveals it's wine barrel aging and finishes like a weak Merlot, but it's evident that this brew should be a little more dynamic than what it is.

MF: Mouthfeel is fine for what this brew is.

Overall, Goose Island might be the king of bourbon barrels, but they're definitely far away from being the kings of wine barrels. I don't see Lolita improving with age, because I do not see any flavor notes that are hidden that will improve over time, but only time will tell.

Photo of Beerandraiderfan
4.13/5  rDev 0%
look: 4 | smell: 4 | taste: 4.25 | feel: 4.25 | overall: 4

Mix of orange and red color, obvious cherry influence on the color of the beer. Thin head, off white.

Aroma is plenty tart, tart sour cherries, raspberries, oak barrel, wine influence and slight bretty funk.

Taste, somewhere crossing the line between flanders red and american wild, this one has more sourness, more acidic, more oomph going for it flavor wise. Very similar to Oude Tart. Like a flanders, but with more sour kick and body substance. Pretty dry with the red wine tannins hitting on all cylinders.

Coolest thing about this beer, it isn't overly complex, but the beer has the right proportion of funk, oak, fruit and sourness to where no one thing dominates. Never noticed the alcohol was so high (9%) on this one, wow, this really covers that up quite well. Good carbonation probably makes it seem a little lighter and easier to drink without getting bogged down in the alcohol.

Drinks well with the song "Lolita" from the band Red Meat.

Photo of chinchill
3.74/5  rDev -9.4%
look: 3.75 | smell: 3.5 | taste: 4 | feel: 3.25 | overall: 3.75

lg shared bottle.
Slight hazy; slighty rosy tint to the medium amber body; decent head.

Very fruity aroma

Flavor moderately tart; light funk, raspberry.

Moderate carbonation.

O: a mix of wild yeast, fruit and tartness that works notably better than average.

Photo of rhoadsrage
4.42/5  rDev +7%
look: 4 | smell: 4.5 | taste: 4.5 | feel: 4 | overall: 4.5

(Served in a chalice)
bottled 12/04/2010 bottle number 727
A- This beer pours a very slight hazy to the cranberry body with a gentle carbonation of tiny bubbles gliding to the surface. There is a think head of snow white that last a good bit. The last pour of the bottle turns the glass into a snow globe.

S- The tartness blends with some dark raspberry flavors and a soft bretty wood note in the finish. The aroma is simple but full.

T- The raspberry tartness is light and gives way to a wet wood and some brett notes in the background. There is a light white wine tannin in there aswell. The raspberry note lingers a bit in the dry finish.

M- This beer has a medium-light mouthfeel with a tight fizz that scrubs a bit too much of the finish away. No real alcohol noticed.

O- The well blended soft tartness supports the full dark fruit flavor with a nice bit of acidity. It would be nice to taste a little more of the funk and wood but it is delicious non the less.

Photo of joeseppy
4.33/5  rDev +4.8%
look: 4 | smell: 4.75 | taste: 4.25 | feel: 4 | overall: 4.25

Pour produces half inch white head that recedes quickly and looks appears quaff is flat. Color of fresh squeezed cranberries, rhubarb, strawberries and such.

Aroma is exquisite. Tart/sour as you like and fresh summer fruits. Without too many words, this needs to be experienced.

Any surprise here-tart as a fresh picked strawberry that exacerbates the taste buds to quiver. I know there are raspberries in here but I get more of a strawberry/rhubarb concoction.

Mouthfeel is quenching and carbonation is spritzy.

Packaging gets a five here and enhances the experience. A nice bottle to share or enjoy alone on a Sunday afternoon like I just have. Lolita is delicious!

Photo of tastybeer
4.25/5  rDev +2.9%
look: 3.5 | smell: 4 | taste: 4.5 | feel: 4.25 | overall: 4.25

Lovely glowing pinkish-red orangy color with a quickly fading white head. No lace, no more head, but a very nice color. Clear enough to see a stream of carbonation bubbles rising at the center of the glass. Aroma is clean with a dusting of wackiness. Juicy tart raspberries, wild yeast, white doughy crackers, warm summer floral, and some soft musky wood. Taste is similar but includes increased tart funkiness. Really nice actually. Very fun to drink. Flavors are sweet and sour berries, tangy and tart, woody and earthy, floral, herbal, fermented fruit, white wine, and grape skins. Smooth, soft, fluid texture, with puckering/smacky tart dryness.

Photo of Sammy
3.9/5  rDev -5.6%
look: 4 | smell: 4 | taste: 4 | feel: 4 | overall: 3.5

Lots of raspberry in this one, thanks Americo. Pink coloured body, fruity aroma. Fuller mouthfeel, also with assertive carbonation. A good tartness, a nice bottle to share because of the acidity. Some other berries there, lending balance, strawberry and some wild blueberry. Could even be some cherry.

Photo of GoldenVIKE
2.33/5  rDev -43.6%
look: 3 | smell: 2.5 | taste: 2 | feel: 2.5 | overall: 2.5

A - Murky copper/cherry red pour with almost no head, lace, or even carbonation visible.

S - faint smell like raspberry fruit candy

T - very sour and dry tasting. tart but not sweet enough to balance the sour.

M - medium bodied, light carbonation

O - Too sour and dry for my liking. Could use more sweetness and carbonation.

Photo of PBRmeasap1980
4.5/5  rDev +9%
look: 4.25 | smell: 4.25 | taste: 4.75 | feel: 4.25 | overall: 4.5

22 oz bottle dated 11/21/11

A - Pours redish brown with very little head that dissapears almost instantly
S - Red wine vinigar, raspberrys. Makes your saliva start to flow immediately!
T- Sweet then tart, then sweet again. Great amount of sour that is still drinkable. Raspberries add a great layer of fruit flavor
M- Smooth with a tiny bubbles helping to drive the taste all over.
O- I really enjoyed this sour. What I want from sour... tart, smooth, drinkable. This will not be my last bottle of Lolita.

Photo of zaphodchak
3.92/5  rDev -5.1%
look: 3.5 | smell: 4 | taste: 4 | feel: 3.5 | overall: 4

No head on my pour. reddish body.

Funk in the nose and some raspberry, but quite leaft.

Some tang, more funk. Raspberry is subtle, not too sweet. Well balanced. Some oak seems evident as well. Quite nice.

Understated carbonation-- not bad.

Nice, tangy, dryish and balanced.

Photo of Roguer
4/5  rDev -3.1%
look: 3.5 | smell: 4 | taste: 4 | feel: 4.25 | overall: 4

Small, quickly-fading clear head. Brew is a pretty clear coppery red. No lacing.

Tart and slightly funky. Slightly sweet; almost smells more like strawberries than raspberries. Brett and berries are both evident.

Flavor follows the nose: slightly tart and acidic, definite notes of berries, and a tiny bit of funk. The Brett might be more significant if you allow this beer to age; right now, it contributes and is present, but everything is fairly well balanced and blended.

Very refreshing and light; lively. Has a lasting residual coating slightly surprising for the lighter feel. The tartness and light funk will have you sipping it more slowly than the feel implies.

This is a good beer, very much worth a try. Somewhere between a fruit lambic and a Brett saison. At about $20 for 750, it's worth a try.

2013 vintage.

Photo of SpeedwayJim
3.34/5  rDev -19.1%
look: 3 | smell: 4 | taste: 3 | feel: 4 | overall: 3

Thanks to schen9303 for this one. Poured from a 22oz bottle into a Duchess oversize wine glass.

A: Gentle pour yields a single layer of big white bubbles that dissipates quickly. Beer is a clear, dark, midnight red. Lacing is non-existent.

S: Nose is pungent sour raspberries, cherries, oak, and Brett. Sweet and simple overall but aromatic and very enticing.

T: Opens slightly spicy and sweet. Brett in the background that is overshadowed by slight yeasty bitterness and sweet cherry. Middle is more red fruit with a mellow, creeping Farnese that never quite gets there. Finish is cobweb and yeast. Aftertaste is sweet red fruit puree.

M: Medium bodied and moderately carbonated. Lively in the mouth and abrasive going down. Finishes dirty with a slightly lingering aftertaste.

D: The appearance and smell of this beer leads me to believe that this one's gonna be amazing... But the taste never quite gets there. Not really tight, funky, or oaky. I would definitely like to revisit this one somewhere down the line, but as is, I'll pass for now.

Photo of dirtylou
4.12/5  rDev -0.2%
look: 4.25 | smell: 4 | taste: 4 | feel: 4.5 | overall: 4.25

765ml bottle split, hill farmstead stemware

All of the 4 Sisters beers are pretty solid - lolita is lively and tart from the aggressive addition of raspberries. Some wood and vinous notes come through from the cab sauv barrels, but those traits are not overly assertive. Bubbly carbonation - good stuff, just wish it was more around the $15 price point

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Lolita from Goose Island Beer Co.
92 out of 100 based on 1,785 ratings.