Malefactor (Gilgamesh) - Upland Brewing Company

Not Rated.
Malefactor (Gilgamesh)Malefactor (Gilgamesh)

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BA SCORE
93
outstanding

63 Reviews
THE BROS
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no score

(Send Samples)
Reviews: 63
Hads: 335
rAvg: 4.24
pDev: 6.13%
Wants: 301
Gots: 132 | FT: 19
Brewed by:
Upland Brewing Company visit their website
Indiana, United States

Style | ABV
Flanders Red Ale |  10.50% ABV

Availability: Winter

Notes & Commercial Description:
Beer added by: claaark13 on 02-05-2012

A stronger version of a Flanders Red Ale aged in previously beer-stored bourbon barrels for some light oak/bourbon character.
Beer: Reviews & Ratings
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Reviews: 63 | Hads: 335
Photo of UCLABrewN84
4.09/5  rDev -3.5%
look: 3.5 | smell: 4.5 | taste: 4 | feel: 4 | overall: 4

Thanks to Whatsarezaf for sharing this one at NoSignsOfPain's birthday bottleshare hosted by mrbubbler.

Pours a murky honey orange with a foamy orange-tan head that settles to a film on top of the beer. Small streaks of lace form around the glass on the drink down. Smell is sour, tart, and funky with some woody and slight vinegar aromas. Taste is much the same with a woody and acidic finish. This beer has a good level of carbonation with a crisp mouthfeel. Overall, this is a good beer but I am not getting any hints of bourbon in the aroma or taste. (556 characters)

Photo of Thorpe429
4.35/5  rDev +2.6%
look: 4 | smell: 4 | taste: 4.5 | feel: 4.5 | overall: 4.5

Big thanks to craytonic for sharing this bottle at last night's tasting. Served in a SAVOR wine glass. Why doesn't Upland make a specialty glass? For shame.

Pours a nice brown-amber color with good red highlights. A nice off-white head and some good lacing on the way down. The nose carries a really nice bit of dark and stone fruits plus some berries. Really a good dosing of fruit in a nice melody. Light bid of malt there as well. There's a fair amount of acidity there as well.

The flavor comes through and really pops. A standard flanders red with a good bit of the bourbon barrel and a heavy fruit component. I was a bit skeptical upon hearing what this one was, but I really enjoyed it. The fruit really stood out to me.

Medium body with a slight bit of booze, but not nearly that 10.5% that is listed. Good acidity coming through after a medium body that created a nice malt base. Perhaps my favorite Upland sour to date. (932 characters)

Photo of brentk56
4.88/5  rDev +15.1%
look: 4.75 | smell: 4.75 | taste: 5 | feel: 5 | overall: 4.75

Appearance: Pours a cloudy auburn color with a very impressive head that leaves a pattern of lace remindful of the Matisse cutouts

Smell: Oaked tart cherries with layers of caramel

Taste: The caramel layer arrives first and buttresses the tart fruit flavors; an explosion of tart cherry, green apple and honeydew in the middle; after the swallow, the oak barrel adds subtle complexity with a hint of Bourbon and vanilla

Mouthfeel: Full bodied and creamy, with moderate carbonation

Overall: Pretty darn close to perfection; right up there with the best beers I have ever tasted

Thanks, duels, for the opportunity (616 characters)

Photo of emerge077
4.18/5  rDev -1.4%
look: 4 | smell: 4 | taste: 4.25 | feel: 4.25 | overall: 4.25

Thanks to Chris for this one!
Dark murky brown with a frothy skim.
Aroma is funky and fruity, seeded berries and a lactic funk.
Taste is savory and lactic, light balsamic, tannic dry oak in the aftertaste.
Medium bodied and creamy, tannic cherry skins. Overall it's complex and interesting, worth a try and to me a little better than Dantalion. (344 characters)

Photo of womencantsail
3.58/5  rDev -15.6%
look: 4 | smell: 3.5 | taste: 3.5 | feel: 4 | overall: 3.5

Thanks, Mark!

Pours a rather dark red/amber color without much in the way of head formation (or carbonation). A bit more bourbon and vanilla than expected. Some definite acetic qualities with some red wine vinegar and dark fruits. A little caramel sweetness, too. Like the nose, sweet toffee/caramel and barrel notes (bourbon and vanilla). The sourness picks up as it warms and the vinegar is able to come through. (415 characters)

Photo of oline73
4.3/5  rDev +1.4%
look: 4 | smell: 4 | taste: 4.5 | feel: 4 | overall: 4.5

Poured from the bottle into a tasting snifter.

Appearance: Pours a reddish amber color with a nice layer of off white head that leaves a ring around the pour.

Smell: I'm getting some dark sour funk with a sweet malt component. Other notes remind me of red berries, brown sugar, and vinegar.

Taste: There is a vinegar sourness with a strong sweet component to balance it out. There are some mild tart berry notes along with some brown sugar. The finish is tart.

Mouthfeel: The body is a bit syrupy with lots of carbonation and a dry finish.

Overall: This was a treat to try. It was sweeter than I usually like my sours, but it seemed to work well here. (656 characters)

Photo of MasterSki
4.08/5  rDev -3.8%
look: 4.5 | smell: 4 | taste: 4 | feel: 4.5 | overall: 4

Bottle shared by Sean on Christmas Eve. Served in a Russian River tulip.

A - Off-white foam settles to a thin cap and splotchy lacework. Transparent dark ruby-brown body.

S - A mixture of brown malts, sharp wet oak, lactic acidity, mild bourbon, and some light cherry vinegar mixed in for good measure.

T - Taste is quite similar, with a hefty dose of lactic acidity and oak, cherry skins, red fruits, a touch of brown malts, and a bit of vinegar. The combination of the latter is mildly evocative of BBQ sauce.

M - Zesty carbonation, medium body, fairly smooth texture, with a dry and oaky finish. There's a hint of residual stickiness, and perhaps a touch of alcohol warming. Still, it's not one where you'd guess 10.5%.

D - This is much better than the bottle I tried at FoBAB a year back. I also liked this a bit better than the Green Flash effort, which was also a Flanders-type beer aged in bourbon barrels. Really sneaky with the booze, which is dangerous as this goes down quite easily. (999 characters)

Photo of mdfb79
4.42/5  rDev +4.2%
look: 4 | smell: 4.5 | taste: 4.5 | feel: 4 | overall: 4.5

From 04/08/12 notes. Split this one on Easter with my brother, poured from a 750ml bottle into a tulip.

a - Pours a murky medium nut brown color with two fingers of light tan head and moderate carbonation evident.

s - Smells of soured fruits, dark fruits, bourbon, roasted malts, acedic, tannis, light wine, oak, and light vinegar. Very nice nose, an awesome mix of sour fruits and bourbon.

t - Tastes of sour dark fruits, fruity malts, funk, vinegar, acedic, oak, bourbon, and light wine. Taste is sourer then the nose, and less bourbon. Again, very great; better then the nose.

m - Medium body and moderate carbonation, acidic body. Pretty nice.

o - Overall I liked this one a lot. The nose has a very nice mix of bourbon and sour dark fruits, whilt eh taste is funkier and sourer, which I love. One of the better Upland sours so far and pretty interesting, glad I have another bottle of it. (898 characters)

Photo of drabmuh
4.12/5  rDev -2.8%
look: 4 | smell: 4.5 | taste: 4 | feel: 4 | overall: 4

Thanks Craytonic, served from a bottle into a snifter. Beer is brown and hazy with a thin tan head of small bubbles, moderate carbonation, some lacing on the glass.

Aroma is a little acetic but not overly so, mild oak and bourbon, power of suggestion on the bourbon possibly.

Beer is medium to light in body, mildly sweet and liquor on the front portion of the palate nad the finish is lactic, succinic, and acetic with a little brightness there. Nice beer overall, hard for me to put this in the "Flanders Red" box with the forward palate but a good beer none-the-less. (572 characters)

Photo of mothman
3.5/5  rDev -17.5%
look: 3.5 | smell: 3.5 | taste: 3.5 | feel: 3.5 | overall: 3.5

Pours a khaki head. Color is a caramel amber.

Aroma: Sour cherries, caramel, and candied sugar. brown sugar. Funky and fruity.

Taste: Sour cherries again. Medicinal with a bit of band-aid flavor. Caramel and bready malts. Candied sugar. Light vinegar.

Mouthfeel Tart and bland. Light bodied with a high amount of carbonation. Ends clean.

Overall, a decent flanders, but nothing too crazy. Enjoyable, however. (412 characters)

Photo of Mora2000
4/5  rDev -5.7%
look: 4 | smell: 4 | taste: 4 | feel: 4 | overall: 4

Bottle shared at bu11zeye's 10,000th rating tasting.

The beer pours a light brown color with a white head. The aroma has a lot of toffee and caramel malt, as well as some tart cherries and oak notes. The flavor is similar, with some lightly tart cherries, oak, leather and vanilla. Medium mouthfeel and medium carbonation. (324 characters)

Photo of Huhzubendah
4.42/5  rDev +4.2%
look: 4 | smell: 4.5 | taste: 4.5 | feel: 4 | overall: 4.5

Bottle shared by craytonic. Thanks Matt.

The beer is brown to ruby hued with an off white head that leaves sparse lacing in its wake. The aroma offers fruit, particularly cherries, oak, and a healthy dose of booze. Powerful flavor, with a strong showing from both the booze and fruit. Plenty of tartness and a bold acetic finish. Impressive. This exceeded my expectations. Would be very happy to try this one again. Recommended. (429 characters)

Photo of Alieniloquium
3.61/5  rDev -14.9%
look: 4 | smell: 3.5 | taste: 3.75 | feel: 3.25 | overall: 3.5

750 mL bottle poured into a taster. Malefactor bottle.

Appearance - Reddish orange and hazy. Thin collar.

Smell - Vinegary acidity. Some bourbon. Deep caramel.

Taste - Great malt flavor behind a strong vinegar sourness. Bourbon and oak. Cherry fruitiness.

Mouthfeel - Medium heavy. Low carbonation. Quite sour.

Overall - This is a palate wrecker of a sour. It's good but it's strong. (388 characters)

Photo of aasher
4.13/5  rDev -2.6%
look: 4.5 | smell: 4 | taste: 4 | feel: 4 | overall: 4.5

Appearance: This beer pours a medium bodied dirty brown with auburn highlights and a slight off white lacing around the glass. 4.5/5
 
Aroma:  Its nose is light and tart with some oak, tart cherries, acetic acid, and sweet malt.  The bourbon isn't really present even as it warms.  It definitely has a pronounced fruit character to go with the almost creamy type of sour or tart indicative of the style. 4/5
 
Taste:  The flavors are initially light and slightly fruity.  I get dark berry alongwith tart cherry.  There is some oak as well as a dark malty sweetness.  It begins slightly sweet and then goes into a tart and then ends with a light sour and an odd bitterness.  The odd bitterness eventually feels like a bourbon esque burn, but this beer isn't really hot by any means. 4/5
 
Mouthfeel: It drinks medium in body and leaves that odd burn at the back of your palate leading into your throat.  This isn't a bad thing but you notice it nonetheless. 4/5
 
Overall:  This is a fine representation of the style but a little expensive.  The bourbon isn't very noticeable so perhaps the base beer was stronger than I anticipated.  This is a nice beer to try but for $25 it's a little expensive for what it is.  If you're a big fan of the style, this is a must try.  4.5/5 (1,293 characters)

Photo of Duff27
4.05/5  rDev -4.5%
look: 4 | smell: 4 | taste: 4 | feel: 4.5 | overall: 4

One inch tan head on a deep red body. Very nice head retention with some lacing.  

Sour nose with a hint of sweet cherries.

Medium sourness comparitavely speking With just enough cherries to keep it fruity. Would guess at 7%abv

Nice mouthfeel, medium. Very carbonated.

Very tasty flemish red, although I'm not picking up a lot if barrel notes. Worth a try. Thanks 4DAloveofSTOUT! (385 characters)

Photo of Gobzilla
4.42/5  rDev +4.2%
look: 4 | smell: 4.5 | taste: 4.5 | feel: 4 | overall: 4.5

A: poured a dark burgundy with brownish highlights and really no head which left virtually no lacing sticking to the glass.

S: lots of fruit aroma was coming out on the nose such as plum, apples, slight citrus but with a little bourbon vanilla character and acidic vinegar notes as well.

T: the bourbon barrel character was not as pronounced on the palate but had lots of fruit flavors like nose consisting of dark fruit, slight apple, a touch of citrus, acidic vinegar notes and vanilla accents.

M: the brew was medium in body with a low amount of carbonation which had a sweet, fruity, mild boozey and tart finish.

O: really good flanders brew and was glad to have been able to try a bourbon barreled flanders. (716 characters)

Photo of wordemupg
4.42/5  rDev +4.2%
look: 4 | smell: 4.5 | taste: 4.5 | feel: 4 | overall: 4.5

750ml corked and caged poured into tulip with Mattsander and alpineclimber, bottle sent out by Masterski and Sean9689 cheers fellows

A glows a ruby red when held to the light, some sediment and just a few slow bubbles feeding a short lived tan finger of foam that leaves lace where it existed

S vanilla hits me first, a little booze, faint cigar smoke and toffee, the barrels strong and it works very well, some overripe fruits as it warms, complex and very enjoyable nose

T much like the smell but it has a strange spice I can’t quite place but I like it, the bourbon notes are nice with a touch of sweetness and a little sour at the same time. Lots going on with everything I smell but there’s a little less vanilla in the mouth

M slightly sour with the burnt brown sugar lingering on the finish, medium-full with very faint heat, it could use a few more bubbles but its far from flat

O very interesting stuff that I could drink myself stupid with, the barrel works well for it and it has mellowed out nicely at this point

I can’t think of anything to compare this one to but I’m loving it, very interesting brew that’s worth seeking out (1,159 characters)

Photo of bluejacket74
4.35/5  rDev +2.6%
look: 4 | smell: 4 | taste: 4.5 | feel: 4.5 | overall: 4.5

750 ml caged and corked bottle, batch date of 9-11 stamped on the back label. Served in a Unibroue tulip, the beer pours a murky reddish/amber color with an inch light tan head. Head retention and lacing are both good. Aroma is nice, it smells like vinegar, tart and sweet cherries, wood, green sour apples, funk and a bit of vanilla. Taste is similar to the aroma. It tastes like tart and sweet cherries, vinegar, lemon peel, funk, wood, vanilla and bourbon. The bourbon flavor isn't strong in this brew at all, but I think the subtle bourbon taste works well with the tartness. Mouthfeel/body is medium, it's a bit syrupy and slick with moderate carbonation. It's also smooth and easy to drink. I think it's a pretty nice overall brew. Yeah, it was $24.99 a bottle, but after drinking it I don't feel like I paid too much for it. Good thing I bought 2 bottles! (862 characters)

Photo of claspada
4/5  rDev -5.7%
look: 4 | smell: 4 | taste: 4 | feel: 4 | overall: 4

Bottle courtesy of mrand01

Pours a slightly hazy with a bright copper/reddish-orange glow. The head is slightly off white and creamy in appearance coupled with nice lacing as it recedes.

Aromas begin with a malty breadiness followed by an earthy dankness, light sour cherries and a very light scent of oak barrel. Some bourbon and vanilla/toffee emerge more as it warms.

The tastes begin pleasant upfront with clean lactic acidity and some light Brett yeast flavors. Midway though more tannic vinous notes emerge coupled with more oakiness than I experienced in the nose. Just like the nose bourbon and vanilla emerge more as it warms. The finish rounds out with sour cherry, light sweet caramel and a stone fruit flavor and funkiness.

The mouthfeel is medium bodied with light carbonation. I would have liked a little more maybe to help the flavors pop. Finish is slightly chewy and dry.

Overall this was a very well rounded beer and a nice take on the style but didn't wow me like others of the style. I don't feel the bourbon added enough flavor here to be called a Bourbon Barrel aged Flanders red. Maybe not enough contact time or the base beer was too big or the bugs are still slowly eating away at the sweet bourbony flavors, who knows. Good but not exactly what I was hoping for. (1,295 characters)

Photo of rudzud
4.29/5  rDev +1.2%
look: 4.25 | smell: 4 | taste: 4.5 | feel: 4.25 | overall: 4.25

Shared with JLindros at his cellar cleaning. Batch 1.

A - Poured into a Kate the Great tulip clear chestnut hue with a fat mocha head that fades to leave thin wisps.

S - Aromas of sweet bourbon, vanilla, caramel, light malt, no alcohol.

T - Taste is loads of bourbon, vanilla, caramel, malts, tartness, light apple skin, really mellow and smooth.

M - Mouthfeel is lightly carbonated, no discernible alcohol.

O - Overall this beer was delicious, loads of light sourness, certainly not as sour as I've come to expect with Upland. This was a real treat.

Serving Type: Bottle (582 characters)

Photo of xnicknj
4.1/5  rDev -3.3%
look: 4 | smell: 4 | taste: 4 | feel: 4 | overall: 4.5

750mL bottle poured into tulip - thanks to brystmar

Pours a hazy auburn/amber color with a reddish glow. Crop of beige head retains nicely, dissipating into webbed lacing on the glass.

Funky and sour in the nose, plenty of cherry and fruit tones. Acidic hints with a glow of bourbon and toasted oak. Red wine with yeasty funk.

Snap of lactic sourness up front with splashes of juicy cherries coupled with dark fruit. Hints of red wine and grape skin, oaky tannins with a slightly earthy warmth. Hints of bourbon and vanilla, raisin and grapes. Finishes sour and dry with lingering acidic bite.

Medium body, upper level carbonation, somehow juicy and dry on the tongue with a lasting finish. I'm a fan of aging sour ales in bourbon barrels, and Upland really nailed this one. I'd definitely be interested in finding another bottle. (837 characters)

Photo of thagr81us
4.2/5  rDev -0.9%
look: 4 | smell: 4 | taste: 4.5 | feel: 4 | overall: 4

This one was a part of cmrillo’s 40 Beers* @ 40 Birthday Bash! Shared by myself! A massive thanks goes out to my boy aasher for sending me this one as a part of a get well back after I first returned to work and was fighting my literally through physical therapy! Served from bottle into a Mikkeller taster flute. Poured a ruby red orange with a half finger white head that subsided to a minimal amount quickly. Maintained decent lacing throughout the glass. The aroma was comprised of sweet malt, cherry, tart, and subtle funk. The flavor was of sweet malt, cherry, tart, sour, wood, cherry, and funk. It had a light feel on the palate with high carbonation. Overall this was a pretty good brew. I really enjoyed this one as a nice followup to the 50/50 Eclipses we had previously. It did a nice job of cleansing the palate and still shining through with all its glory. The flavor was my favorite part as it was quite complex and very well balance. A definite must try regardless if you have done so or not. (1,010 characters)

Photo of 4DAloveofSTOUT
4.18/5  rDev -1.4%
look: 4.5 | smell: 4 | taste: 4.25 | feel: 4.5 | overall: 4

reviewed from notes on 5/20/12.

750ml cork and cage poured into tulip glass.

Appearance: mohoganey red bodied beer with 2 fingers of white head that drops down to a thin cap. Nice lacing on the glass.

Smell: sweet and tart cherries, oak, and funk.

Taste: starts off with sour cherries. The beer has a mild funk to it and a hint of vanilla, oak and earthiness. Mild bourbon.

Mouthfeel: medium body with moderate carbonation. This has some prickly and aggressive carbonation, but it drinks well with this beer. Little bit acidic and dry.

Overall: Another really good sour by Upland. Only had a few flanders red, but I do enjoy the beer style. (646 characters)

Photo of cosmicevan
4/5  rDev -5.7%
look: 4 | smell: 4 | taste: 4 | feel: 4 | overall: 4

Notes taken from a bottleshare at the Phoenix Sun in NYC. Thanks kindly to whomever brought this one for sharing.

a - identical to the wanderer that was poured just before this. deep murky amber brown.
s - sweet tart and sour cherry.
t - pretty sour. sour cherries to be precise.
m - puckeringly sour.
o - overall very tart sour cherries. nice flanders, but very much on the sour end of the spectrum. (401 characters)

Photo of mltobin
4.12/5  rDev -2.8%
look: 3.5 | smell: 4 | taste: 4 | feel: 4.5 | overall: 4.5

Bottle split amongst a few friends. Excited to try a sour style beer from Upland. It pours a red-orange color with haziness. The nose of it contains red wine, vinegar, cherry and sugar. A very interesting beer so far. It tastes nice, a mix of sour, bourbon, cherry, good mix of flavors. Mouthfeel is medium, acidic to be sure, leaves you with a bit of sour face. A very good beer that is worth your time. (404 characters)

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Malefactor (Gilgamesh) from Upland Brewing Company
93 out of 100 based on 63 ratings.