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Sour Reserve - Upland Brewing Company

Not Rated.
Sour ReserveSour Reserve

Educational use only; do not reuse.

49 Reviews

(Read More)
Reviews: 49
Hads: 349
Avg: 4.21
pDev: 10.45%
Wants: 558
Gots: 85 | FT: 11
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
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Reviews: 49 | Hads: 349
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.

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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

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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.

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Photo of TrueRates
4.82/5  rDev +14.5%
look: 4.5 | smell: 5 | taste: 5 | feel: 4.5 | overall: 4.5

Pours a semi deep golden color. Aromas are very complex with a cheesy, barnyard, acidic quality to it. Really incredible. Taste is bretty fruit with some kiwi, soured apples, persimmon and highly acidic. Very, very sour but not over the top. Finish is long lasting and complex.

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Photo of jmarsh123
4.8/5  rDev +14%
look: 4.5 | smell: 4.5 | taste: 5 | feel: 4.5 | overall: 5

Pours a murky dark yellow with a moderate white head fading away quickly.

Aroma has a bit of a blue cheese funk with lactic acid and some wet hay.

Flavor is a lot more sour than the aroma would let on. A distinct lactic sharpness with sour apple, pear and peaches. A little bit of the hay from the aroma carries over and it finishes very sour and dry with a lot of oakiness.

Light and refreshing with medium carbonation.

Caleb nailed this one. I wish I had more than 1 bottle. Very pleasant sourness without being over the top and hands down the winner of our sour tasting.

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Photo of camil1mj
4.75/5  rDev +12.8%
look: 4.5 | smell: 4.5 | taste: 5 | feel: 5 | overall: 4.5

Shared with my tasting group. Opened slowly and carefully, as I was prepared for a gusher like some of the other Uplands. To my surprise, it was just fine. No gushing or foaming. Served slightly chilled in my Darkness snifter.

A: Cloudy, bright yellow. White fizzy head that quickly dissipates.

S: Lots of citrus and sour funkiness.

T: Lots of great sours flavors coming together: lemon, apple, vinegar. Very tart and refreshing.

M: Lighter body with a good amount of carbonation.

O: Great beer. Too bad it was one of only 300 bottles. I will make sure to get this again if the release another batch in the future. I am optimistic, as the label states it is batch 1.

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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

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Photo of Dreadnaught33
4.67/5  rDev +10.9%
look: 4 | smell: 4.5 | taste: 5 | feel: 4.5 | overall: 4.5

This beer is AMAZING. I want some more, somebody trade me! Thanks to Chris for sharing this at Matt's (starrdogg) tasting.

A: Nice hazy orange color with no head at all, almost looks like flat crush soda after the initial head dies. Pretty, golden color on the edges.

S: Wow, super fresh and funky aroma, tons of yeasty straw and bretty notes. Some lighter fruit and champagne as well. Really nice level overall of tartness and dry fruit.

T: Super tart and very nice grapey/berry notes. I feel like there are flavors that remind me of their other lambics like the blueberry, it's acidic and i love it. Oak carries the flavors to a new level, and other straw and cherry flavors come into it. Huge after taste.

M: I love the thickness and body of this beer. Nice amount of tart and thickness.

Overall a excellent brew, really well done.

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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.

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Photo of weatherdog
4.62/5  rDev +9.7%
look: 4.5 | smell: 5 | taste: 4.5 | feel: 4.5 | overall: 4.5

750mL bottle poured into a tulip glass. Thanks to Jay for cracking this open for a pre-tasting tasting.

It pours as one would expect, fairly cloudy pale yellow, tiny white head and minimal lacing.

The aroma is as perfect as I could imagine. It has this pretty huge acidic lemon bite, earthy, dirty and some serious brett funk.

The taste was very similar, huge acidity, that then gets earthy and barnyard. There is also an odd sweetness in the taste that I've never had in other gueuze or gueuze style beers. I can only conjecture that this is some of the unconsumed sugars. If that's true then I can see this beer aging spectacularly. The taste had less lemon than the aroma and it was replaced with some more apple and flavors the reminded me of their newest persimmon lambic. The funk was very present but not overpowering or bordering on cheesy as I've tasted in other similar beers.

Mouthfeel was just fine to me, I did not find it overly slick and the carbonation level was on the lower side but acceptable.

Overall this beer just impressed me greatly. It falls just behind Beatification in terms of American made Gueuze style beers. If the most recent fruit lambic release, and now the sour reserve release is any indication on how the sour program is progressing at Upland I'm very excited to see what is next.

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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.

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Photo of AleWatcher
4.5/5  rDev +6.9%
look: 4.5 | smell: 4.5 | taste: 4.5 | feel: 4.5 | overall: 4.5

shared at darkness day by aasher and/or backfat
reviewed from notes

like a light hazy orangey color. Wispy cloud of bubbles skim across the surface in a glorious Rorschach design that makes me see the eye of a hurricane. Some spots of lacing. Decent legs, like a nice white wine on the legs-- but this is very well carbed.

nose is sour green apple, little hay, some oak... I get some persimmon and kiwi flavors here as well. This is absolutely intense in its sourness. Just lots and lots and lots of sour. Me likey.

Well carbonated, but still offers a touch a syrupy oiliness.

Overall-- this might supplant the persimmon as my top Upland sour beer. Very nicely done.

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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

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Photo of mdfb79
4.47/5  rDev +6.2%
look: 4 | smell: 4.5 | taste: 4.5 | feel: 4.5 | overall: 4.5

From 10/28/11 notes. Huge thank to BigSexy410 for sharing this one.

a - Pours a murky orange brown color with two inches of fluffy white head and moderate carbonation evident. Spotty lacing left on the glass.

s - Smells of sour fruits, especially cherries, raspberries, and some kiwi, brett, lactic notes, and some light funk. Very sour and bretty, really enjoyable.

t - Tastes of sour cherries, berries and dark fruits, kiwi, brett, light wood. Again, super tart and fruity, and really great. Little bit of a step up from the nose.

m - Medium body and moderate carbonation. Dry and pretty easy to drink.

o - Overall I thought this was a fantastic beer. I've had all of Upland's lambics and their Dantalion wild ale and this is by far the best sour they've done. Tons of brett and sour fruits in the nose and taste, and I felt like I could have taken down the whole 750ml bottle myself (and would want to). Very glad I have a bottle of this and will surely be looking forward to their next Reserve release.

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Photo of backfat
4.44/5  rDev +5.5%
look: 3.5 | smell: 4.5 | taste: 4.5 | feel: 4.5 | overall: 4.5

Big ups to ma boy backfat (me) for busting open this gem :) I was really looking forward to opening to rarity. The pour is a clouded yellowish golden cider. Smell is sharp and cheesy. Bright fruits, bretty funk, and lovely apple characteristics all dominant the nose. Taste follows the nose with lots of acidic granny smith apples and delicious musty funk. Dry and great beer as suspected. This tastes old, spritzy, and fantastic. Hopefully the bottle variation isn't as nuts as their other releases. This is my favorite upland release so far and right up there with certain batches of kiwi, persimmon, blackberry, and raspberry.

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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.

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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.

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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 -

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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.

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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.


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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.

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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.

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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.

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Photo of aasher
4.21/5  rDev 0%
look: 4 | smell: 4.25 | taste: 4.25 | feel: 4 | overall: 4.25

Thanks to Dave (backfat) for opening this one so I didn't have to open mine haha. This beer pours an interesting and cloudy gold in color with a white lacing around my glass. It smells of a concoction of Uplands lambics and is heavy on Persimmon and Kiwi especially, which is fine, their two best in my opinion. It is very fruit forward before going into a nice and clean lactic sour. The flavor is fruit forward too and again heavy on Persimmon and Kiwi with some slight butter, ala California Chardonnay. It drinks light and effervescent (sp?) and is pretty clean with a light and subtly dry finish. Overall I'd say its Upland's finest, behind their Persimmon lambic.

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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.

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Sour Reserve from Upland Brewing Company
92 out of 100 based on 49 ratings.