Dismiss Notice
Subscribe to BeerAdvocate magazine?

Learn more about beer and save over 53% with a 3-year subscription.

Subscribe now →

Sour Reserve - Upland Brewing Company

Not Rated.
Sour ReserveSour Reserve

Educational use only; do not reuse.

48 Reviews

(Read More)
Reviews: 48
Hads: 340
Avg: 4.21
pDev: 27.79%
Wants: 561
Gots: 84 | FT: 10
Brewed by:
Upland Brewing Company visit their website
Indiana, United States

Style | ABV
Gueuze |  ABV ?

Availability: Rotating

Notes & Commercial Description:
Beer added by: aasher on 10-22-2011

BLEND 1: Batch Years Blended 2006 (our original batch of lambics), 2008, 2010
BLEND 2: Batch Years Blended All 2008
Beer: Reviews & Ratings
Sort by:  Recent | High | Low | Top Raters | Read the Alström Bros Beer Reviews and Beer Ratings of Sour Reserve Alström Bros
first ← prev | 1-25 | 26-50  | nextlast
Reviews: 48 | Hads: 340
Photo of Keananmichael5
4.24/5  rDev +0.7%
look: 4 | smell: 4.25 | taste: 4.25 | feel: 4.25 | overall: 4.25

Very solid sour! One of the more tart beers that I had at gabf and it was really tasty. Any type of sour is good in my book and this one did not disappoint.

 156 characters

Photo of BeerAdvocate
4/5  rDev -5%
look: 4 | smell: 4 | taste: 4 | feel: 4 | overall: 4

From BeerAdvocate Magazine #83 (Dec 2013):

Here we have Blend No. 4, a blend of new and old sour beers (“old” meaning several years of age). The broadness of flavors and the complexities behind each one are all beautiful. We had hoped for a bit of carbonation here, but regardless, this is a real treat.

STYLE: American Wild Ale
ABV: 0.0%

LOOK: Hazed peach hue, no head or lacing

SMELL: Funk, peppercorn, musty cellar, horse blanket, mint, tart, earthy, vinous, wood tannin

TASTE: Still, slick, moderate-sized body, deep tartness throughout, pungent, prevalent wood, wine-like, barnyard, musty, pineapple skin, mild broth, faint spice, lemon oil, finishes dry, lingering tartness

 711 characters

Photo of brandoneast
4.37/5  rDev +3.8%
look: 4.75 | smell: 4.5 | taste: 4.25 | feel: 4.5 | overall: 4.25

Batch #3 quite sour with hints of unripe pear, Granny Smith apple and tangy goat cheese. Hmm now that I think of it, all those things would have been nice in an omelette and could have been a tasty pairing with this batch 3.

 224 characters

Photo of ironchefmiyagi13
4.66/5  rDev +10.7%
look: 4.5 | smell: 4.75 | taste: 4.75 | feel: 4.5 | overall: 4.5

Batch #5

Pours a delicious orange color with a head that rises and falls quickly.

Smell up front was great, but the more it sat and opened up the better it got. Plenty of that Upland acid and funk, but as it warmed so much fruit and minerals came through. Lots of stone fruit, plenty of crushed stone, rich earth and tannic barrel compliment the amount of funk.

Same goes for the flavor.

Mouthfeel is medium-medium plus with nice crisp carbonation and a faint sweetness on the finish.

I absolutely loved this beer, and while I haven't been a fan of the other Uplands I have had, this one vaulted to the top of the sours I have had so far. On par with Duck-Duck-Gooze.

 672 characters

Photo of Rifugium
4/5  rDev -5%
look: 4 | smell: 4 | taste: 4 | feel: 4 | overall: 4

Thanks to Todd for the share!
Batch #3.

Yellow-straw color with a slight haze, lots of bubbles rising from the bottom of the glass, feeding a wispy white head at the top; minimal lacing. In the nose, lacto-lemon, apple skin, hints of sulfur and crackery malts. Pretty darn sour on the palate, lacto, lemon and apple acidity, moderate notes of sulfur, yogurt, cobwebs, some acetic puckeriness, oak, dried leaves, and distant crackery malts in the background. Medium body, dry and acidic mouthfeel, lively carbonation. Interesting to call this a gueuze, but I guess the brewing/blending process makes it that. Regardless, a solid and enjoyable sour overall. I'd like to try it with a few years on it.

 699 characters

Photo of Stevedore
4.41/5  rDev +4.8%
look: 4 | smell: 4.25 | taste: 4.5 | feel: 4.5 | overall: 4.5

750ml of Blend #3, opened up by Doug right after K13. Poured into a snifter today, 1/24/2014.

App- hazy dark yellow-gold body, 1 finger white head, ok retention, no lacing. I was the second person to pour and the first person's pour had a much clearer pour. Clearly there's a good bit of sediment floating around in here.

Smell- straight up acidity and sourness, oak, non-descript fruit aromas, a little bit of Upland funk

Flavour- 8/10 sour quotient, quite acidic. Malts, stonefruit, dry oak tannins. But most of all, vinegary sour.

Mouthfeel- Nice full bodied, well carbonated, on the verge of creaminess, goes down very well.

Overall- Very enjoyable beer that is extremely sour, but adds just enough more on top of the acidity that it's not just a sour bomb, but is fairly complex. Enjoyed the stonefruit flavours and the dry oak finish on this beer. Upland is the real deal.

 884 characters

Photo of UCLABrewN84
4.42/5  rDev +5%
look: 3 | smell: 4.75 | taste: 4.5 | feel: 4 | overall: 4.5

Bottle pour at the DTLA bottle share held at Beer Belly in Los Angeles, CA.

Thanks to Alex for sharing this one.

Blend 3.

Pours a murky honey orange-brown with a foamy beige head that settles to wisps of film on top of the beer. Small dots of lace slowly drip into the remaining beer on the drink down. Smell is super sour with malt, fruit, vinegar, and acidic aromas. Taste is much the same with sour fruit and vinegar flavors on the finish. There is a medium amount of acidity on the palate with each sip. This beer has a good level of carbonation with a crisp mouthfeel. Overall, this is a fantastic beer with an awesome set of aromas and flavors coming from this blend of barrels.

 687 characters

Photo of Alieniloquium
3.34/5  rDev -20.7%
look: 3.25 | smell: 3.5 | taste: 3.25 | feel: 3 | overall: 3.5

750 mL bottle poured into a snifter. Batch 3.

Appearance - Hazy orange body. Small white head. Thin collar.

Smell - Really acidic. Nostril flaring acids. Acetic.

Taste - Really strong sourness. Acetic. Some pale malts. Dominated by sourness.

Mouthfeel - Medium low carbonation. Extremely sour.

Overall - I can't taste much beyond the sourness.

 349 characters

Photo of jeremiahoden
5/5  rDev +18.8%
look: 5 | smell: 5 | taste: 5 | feel: 5 | overall: 5

Amen to southhouse brew! The best gueuze I've ever had! When Caleb gets a sour right its right. I love all of the Uplands that I've had. Ive had them side by side with the russian rivers,cascades, cantillons,and drie fonteinens. Upland is world class! This is for batch # 2 and #3

 280 characters

Photo of TMoney2591
4.15/5  rDev -1.4%
look: 4 | smell: 4 | taste: 4.25 | feel: 4 | overall: 4.25

Served in a wedding snifter.

Batch 3. This seems like a nice enough capstone for the evening, eh? It pours a cloudy sunset straw-amber topped by a half-finger or so of lightly off-white foam. The nose comprises tart lemon zest, light vinegar, light funk, and orange juice. The taste brings in more of the same, with some hefty sourness and a few veins of slightly-sweeter red wine vinegar every now and again. The body is a light medium, with a light moderate carbonation and a dry, sticky finish. Overall, a damn fine sour, one that brings the tartness with a vengeance. Not a bad beer to finish the day off with.

 615 characters

Photo of Florida9
4.13/5  rDev -1.9%
look: 3.5 | smell: 4.25 | taste: 4.25 | feel: 4 | overall: 4

Batch 3

Cloudy yellow. Smallish head. Very little retention. No lacing. Aroma is quite sour. Green apples, lactic acid, sour tarts, slight vinegar note. Taste is similar. Quite sour. Actually very sour. There is a green apple sweetness in the mix that reminds me of one of those extreme sour candies. Mild pale malts. Lighter body. Minimal bitterness, if any at all. Decent carbonation.
A very sour beer. If you're into such beers, you'll enjoy it. If not, this is an intensely sour beer.

 490 characters

Photo of mjohnson17
4.92/5  rDev +16.9%
look: 5 | smell: 4.75 | taste: 5 | feel: 4.75 | overall: 5

Batch 3 poured from bottle into teku

A: Nice carbonation, head dissipates to leave a nice dense head-ring of about 1/4 inch. Beautiful orange color. Had yeast protein floaties but I don't mind.

S: Amazing. Lots of sour acidic notes; lemon, tangerine, grapefruit, and well as vinegar.

T: This was the standout from a stellar tasting lineup. The flavors are so well balanced; there's tons of acidity but the malt is there to counter, it's dry but not overdone, There's a full creaminess to it, probably lacto, that's a very welcome too. There wine wine barrel characteristics come through nicely too; some sour grape musk, slight tannins, and smooth oakiness.

M: Light and crisp yet full and creamy like a really well done gueuze should be.

O: Best american sour I've had, and certainly the best example of an American gueuze out there. Batch 3 is better than batch two and is a damn near perfect beer.

 905 characters

Photo of southhousebrew
5/5  rDev +18.8%
look: 5 | smell: 5 | taste: 5 | feel: 5 | overall: 5

Blend #2 & #3 (several tastings, bottle)

This is, by far, the best Gueuze I've ever had. Foreign or domestic.

The acidity level and associated flavors, the wide and unique range of yeast/bacteria driven flavors and aromas, the level of fine carbonation. Its. All. Perfect.

Its a privilege to live so close to a brewery producing such a great product.

 353 characters

Photo of belgianb
4.4/5  rDev +4.5%
look: 4.25 | smell: 4.75 | taste: 4.25 | feel: 4 | overall: 4.5

Appearance - fresh squeezed grapefruit juice, but more like pressed apple juice - think Bellini - cloudy with a small but pretty head at first - some lacing, but lost quickly

Smell - overwhelming vinegar and rotting citrus, mostly grapefruit, some vanilla around the edges, but all gone musty - like a teenager's hamper or an old wet band-aid -

Taste - vinegar and citrus with some pleasant red wine notes from the oak barrels - tart throughout - sharp and then a swoosh - like dipping your glass into a summer's compost bin - creamier than last year's reserve, which is slightly disappointing -

Mouthfeel - smooth up front with a nice burn in the back - sits like weak acid on the tongue, but the pain fades too quickly - the burn is not harsh in the back end - more like a scrape - it doesn't overwhelm the taste -

Overall - one of the most complete and rewarding sours out there - more refined, more soulful than anything else on the market - not quite as life-changing as last year's reserve, however - you want to drink this cold and fresh, because it doesn't sit will in the hand -changeable, mercurial, which is not always a bad thing - we're still saying it's really good, even as we feel a little let-down -

 1,224 characters

Photo of cpetrone84
3/5  rDev -28.7%
look: 3 | smell: 3 | taste: 3 | feel: 3 | overall: 3

Batch 2. Pour is glowing orange, light haze, and tight white head. Nose is orange citrus and tangerine, juicy wine and barrel, light musk and cheese and seemingly acetic. Taste is juicy, oily, orange citrus and tangerine, wine barrel and oak, light cheese moving to acetic acid. Burn in finish, not horrible but increasing, semi dry, assertive carbonation and a bit heavy on the body.

 384 characters

Photo of SpeedwayJim
4.09/5  rDev -2.9%
look: 2.5 | smell: 4 | taste: 4.25 | feel: 4.25 | overall: 4.25

Thanks to GuisseppeFranco for this one. Batch 1 750ml corked and caged bottle into a Cantillon flute. Had at a tasting 5/19/2013. Reviewed from notes.

Beer is a cloudy peach. No lace, thin legs, and no head. Not much to look at.

Nose is sweet, pulpy with some light tartness, a touch of mango and a bit of acidity. Aromatic and pretty appetizing.

Opens tart lemon, hay, and wood. Sour mango and apricot notes at the middle. Gueuz-y. Finishes some vinegar and lemon with a well balanced malt presence. Aftertaste of tart tropical fruit. Pretty simple overall but well balanced and the flavors work well together.

Light to medium bodied with moderate to high carbonation. Spritzy and bubbly in the mouth and silky and filmy going down. Messy finish with a lingering aftertaste. Appropriate.

A very solid beer all the way around and pretty in-line with the rest of Upland's wild offerings. Certainly worth trying.

 918 characters

Photo of jeonseh
4.24/5  rDev +0.7%
look: 4 | smell: 4.25 | taste: 4.25 | feel: 4.25 | overall: 4.25

Batch 2; Bottle shared with NWI tasting group

A - Light golden with orange hue. Small white head full of carbonation. Small amount of carbonation trailing upwards

S - Lots of white vinegar tartness. Slight oak and lemon as well. Overall, you can tell that this is going to be a tart and sour beer

T - Really tart and sour beer. Get sweet-tarts, lactic acid, and lemon initially. There is a light blue cheese funk to it but this one is definitely more on the tart side. Light oak comes through in the finish as well

M - Lots of carbonation but the beer manages to have a nice pillowy softness to it that makes this light in the mouth

T - This is a Gueuze that leans more to the tart side than the funky side. This is definitely one of the tarter beers that I've ever had. It's a mouth puckerer.

 798 characters

Photo of Etan
3.9/5  rDev -7.4%
look: 4.5 | smell: 4.5 | taste: 3.5 | feel: 3.5 | overall: 4

750ml bottle, blend 2, into a Cantillon tulip. Some gushing but not too bad. Review #400.

A: Pours a murky yet bright clementine body with a decent white head.

S: Very oaky. Pineapple brett, lactic, slight mushroom, quite earthy, a bit of acetic character.

T: Taste is quite fruity, with some bright lemon twang. Lactic, drying oak, wet hay, lots of vinegary acetic acid.

M: Light-bodied, very light carbonation.

O: This definitely surpasses most American wilds in terms of complexity, but unfortunately the vinegary acetic character is getting a bit too strong (at least in this bottle). I will definitely seek out future blends if this is any indication of the program's potential, but right now there are some glitches to work out.

 739 characters

Photo of russwbeck
4.47/5  rDev +6.2%
look: 3.5 | smell: 4 | taste: 4.5 | feel: 5 | overall: 5

Big thanks to my Indiana University friend who picked this up for me!

A: The beer pours a semi-clear yellow pour that hints towards brown at the very center. Only a film of bubbly, white head builds up and recedes quickly. The level of bubbles in the beer initially is high, but slows down pretty quickly. Relatively tame appearance. 3.5

S: The aroma is wheaty, with a nice musty funk to it. Tart raspberries, lemon, and grass provide a really nice balance here that really invites you to take a drink. 4

T: First words out of my mouth after the first taste were, "wow this is outstanding," and my thoughts never wavered from there. The beer is aggressively sour with a really nice backbone of fruit (seems like raspberries to me). It's sour up front, but some sweetness and fruit takes the middle over. The finish is very tart, so much that my mouth salivates for more the second I finish the last drops. Hints of oak and red wine come out as the beer finishes. Oak, grapes, and hints of booze. 4.5

MF: Pretty light body with the perfect amount of carbonation. The balance of this beer really lend to its drinkability. It's bright, crisp, and finishes perfectly. 5

O: Considering I enjoyed this on Zwanze Day and I'm considering it the best sour beer I've had today, that's really saying a lot. I cannot say enough how delicious this beer was. I almost wish I didn't share it with everybody...almost. 5

 1,408 characters

Photo of rlee1390
4.22/5  rDev +0.2%
look: 4 | smell: 4.5 | taste: 4 | feel: 4 | overall: 4.5

A-Bright orange, some carbonation, not much, but some lacing is left.

S-Fruit, oak, funk, more funk.

T-Funk, sour, oranges, other fruits, oak, grapes/wine, well balanced as well.

M-Medium bodied, some carbonation, easy drinking.

O-A wonderful sour. Great sour notes, balance is perfect. Not a shock this won a gold medal at GABF.

 333 characters

Photo of brystmar
4.21/5  rDev 0%
look: 3 | smell: 4.5 | taste: 4 | feel: 4.5 | overall: 4.5

Batch 2. Happy birthday Sarah!

Not a gusher, hooray! Bold, cloudy orange body sprouts bubbles up top briefly before fading down into the liquid. Strong funk and soured fruit aromas billow forth, catching my senses by surprise. Earthy with bitter yeast balanced against a grainy (mildly wheaty?), fruity base. Intensely sour, just how I like it. Puckering at the start; bitter yeast catches up at the end to finish dry and mildly bitter.

Been about 6 months since I tried b1, which I remember being even better than this. Regardless, this batch of Sour Reserve is a fantastic American sour worthy of any/all hype it receives. Recommended.

 639 characters

Photo of BentLegBrewer
4.7/5  rDev +11.6%
look: 4.5 | smell: 4.5 | taste: 5 | feel: 4.5 | overall: 4.5

Had the pleasure of tasting this gem of limited production at a buddy's tasting. it had a difficult task of standing out against some other phenomenal beers that evening including hunah, 20yr elijah, choclate rain, duck duck gooze and others. it did so with force. it is very taste forward with lots of tart aroma to boot. only downfall to this amazing beer is that its finish is short relative to other sours and the great taste quickly dissipates. I would recommend that if you can find one buy one hell buy ten it wont disappoint

 532 characters

Photo of woosterbill
4.31/5  rDev +2.4%
look: 3 | smell: 4.5 | taste: 4.5 | feel: 3.5 | overall: 4.5

750ml bottle, blend #1, into a Duvel tulip. Huge thanks to Knifestyles for sharing this rare gem.

A: Slightly hazy amber body under a fine off-white head that settles into a ring. Ok, but unremarkable.

S: Quite bright and fruity, with lemon, white wine grape, and cantaloupe. A hint of grassiness but not really funk. Really nice.

T: Tart lacto up front, with grape skin and lemon dominating the mid-palate. Tropical fruit and melon on the clean finish. Some lingering, puckering sourness. Deliciousness.

M: Light-bodied and spritzy. Nice carbonation, but a little thin.

O: Excellent American sour. It didn't quite have the funky depths of a top-tier Belgian Geuze, but it was absolutely delicious in its own delightfully fruity way. RIght up there with an Allagash Coolship or RR wild.


 801 characters

Photo of FosterJM
3.92/5  rDev -6.9%
look: 3.5 | smell: 4 | taste: 4 | feel: 3.5 | overall: 4

1484th Review on BA
Bottle to FW 6oz Snifer
750ml C/C

Batch 2
Shared with JealousChalice,KevanB & Schmoopsbeer

App- A more clear yellow with a slight haze behind it. No bubbles behind it. More of a peachy hazy color. Was a bit saddened by lack of carb on this one.

Smell- With very few aromatics making this beer come together I thought the notes I did get were pleasant and on par with the rest of the Wild Ales ive had. More vinegar, oak, lactic acid and fruits.

Taste- It's good, but I felt I opened it too young. But alas the problem with only having one bottle. Its very strong on the oak front and lacks a certain balance. Has a lot of vinegar behind it and packs a strong lactic punch.

Mouth- A lighter body with a low carbonation. Really lacks a bit of bubbles to make it something better. A bit of oak and lactic on the residual flavors.

Drink- It was good, but needed to be a few steps up for what I believe this bottle is considered. I would like another bottle to sit on for a couple years.

 1,008 characters

Photo of boilermakerbrew
4.52/5  rDev +7.4%
look: 4 | smell: 4.5 | taste: 4.5 | feel: 5 | overall: 4.5

Batch 2, bottled on 3-16-12.

A- Pours a very hazy orange-gold color. Small head that retains well and laces ok. Really a brilliant color.

S- Tart and fruity on the nose. Some acid heavy grapefruit and almost peach fruit flavors.

T- Tart and acidic on the tongue. Very fruity, and fairly sweet to balance the sour. Good blend of fruits and acidic. Acidic flavors linger on the tongue at the end.

M- Relatively low levels of carbonation. Somewhat light weight is refreshing, yet still fairly creamy on the palate.

Overall, a very good sour. I can't put my finger on the exact flavor profiles, but they balance very nicely. A very good sour, with another in the cellar to age.

 679 characters

first ← prev | 1-25 | 26-50  | nextlast
Sour Reserve from Upland Brewing Company
92 out of 100 based on 48 ratings.