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Nor' Easter - Captain Lawrence Brewing Co.

Nor' EasterNor' Easter

Displayed for educational use only; do not reuse.
BA SCORE
91
outstanding

295 Ratings
THE BROS
-
no score

(send 'em beer!)
Ratings: 295
Reviews: 211
rAvg: 4.1
pDev: 12.2%


Brewed by:
Captain Lawrence Brewing Co. visit their website
New York, United States

Style | ABV
Belgian Strong Dark Ale |  12.00% ABV

Availability: Winter

Notes/Commercial Description:
No notes at this time.

(Beer added by: Billolick on 02-12-2007)
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Photo of Kkottonmouthkngz
Kkottonmouthkngz

Massachusetts

4.38/5  rDev +6.8%
look: 4 | smell: 4.5 | taste: 4.5 | feel: 4.5 | overall: 4

sat for a few months before pouring, but christmas day in new england seemed like a good day to crack this one.
pours black as night with very little head retention.. but what little lacing there is, sticks to the sides of the glass like glue.
the scent emenating from the glass is nearly divine. i love the tart, blackish elderberry smell that seems slapped in the face with bing cherry and blueberry. i could really sit and smell this brew all day long... every time seems to yield a new aspect.... sometimes fig and rasin, sometimes blueberry pie. it really takes me a few minutes of smelling to finally get anywhere further than that.
taste brings forward more of the same, like taking a bite of blueberry pie, with some nice tart not completely fresh blueberries.
the bourbon comes through in a different way than i thought it would, but makes sense in the application after having tasted the beer. it particularly plays background amd just boosts the tart berry flavors in quite an enticing way.
if this beer wasnt 12%, drinkability would be way higher, but for what it is ill take it, i wouldnt change much. definitely worth checking out.

Serving type: bottle

12-25-2010 23:59:28 | More by Kkottonmouthkngz
Photo of CrellMoset
CrellMoset

Virginia

4/5  rDev -2.4%
look: 4.5 | smell: 4.5 | taste: 3.5 | feel: 5 | overall: 4

Batch #4, courtesy of a generous New England BA - thanks! Poured in to a snifter one year later, as we approach the perfect time of year for a beer like this.

Appearance: Pours a surprisingly dark, almost stout-esque hue, opaque even to direct light, though the initial stream that came out of the neck of the bottle was slightly transparent around the edges. The head is equally dark, or at least darker than expected, a nice, light mocha color, uniform in tone and largely uniform in consistency, though it's a little frothy and aerated in places. The retention is above average for a barrel aged, 12% abv brew. Its quite nice, actually, taking its time to fade in to a creamy, dense collar and faint patches of surface lace, and leaves behind some spectacular side lacing (again, for a 12% abv barrel aged beer). Eruptions arc upwards from sheet-like patches lower along the sides of the snifter, demarcating the head-fade from the sip-remnants, and they look like small, barren, leafless, deciduous trees rising up from a crisp, dirty, snowy ground.

Aroma: More subdued and varied than the mouth, particularly as it warms. The elderberries come through mature, well-integrated, and rather enjoyable here, sort of adding a layer of light fruit complexity on top of the base beer and the barrel aging. Tart apples and pears meld with the berry notes, wrapped in sweet lawyers of warm, festive sugars, toasted and caramelly, suggested brown sugar and molasses, with slight cocoa and toast. The bourbon barrel notes here are even more masterfully integrated - warm vanilla sugar and coconut are on equal footing with the sweet, spicy bourbon kiss.

Taste: Wow. Initially, it's incredibly tart, with those berries front and center. After about a tenth of the snifter (this is a 22 oz. snifter, for those who care about such things), it becomes a little more manageable as the tongue grows acclimated to the earthy sourness. I guess the berry notes are a good enough place to start. They're bright, bold, and decidedly tart, like cherries almost, or kiwi. I'm not sure what they compliment here well - the sharpness of any bourbon that would be here is definitely buried, and I suppose it does mingle well with a few of the darker fruit notes evidenced in the base beer, but it just seems a little too intense, pungent, extreme, and "in your face." It fades a little as this one warms - or rather, the other components here step up to the plate, as the sweetness is kicked up a notch and begins to counter the tartness - but still. Oy.

Moving on, you have a robust though not mindblowing base beer. Brown sugar and crystalline caramel notes are present, as are wholesome, bready notes, though all are relatively well-attenuated, and suggestive of cidery sweet notes at certain points (which is something I get in homebrew when I use too much raw sugar, though I imagine here it's just the berry addition). A nice fruity addition is here, separate from the elderberries - raisins, tart black cherries, and a few pear notes add a good deal of complexity to the profile here. The bourbon is another issue entirely. It's definitely there - sweet, slightly spicy, and mostly characterized by how well it brings along an unusually strong vanilla notes, along with a few kisses of oak - but even it takes a back seat to the piercing tartness of the elderberries.

Mouthfeel: Very soft, delicate almost. The body itself is moderate, perhaps even a little on the thinner side, largely by virtue of the relative dryness of the body, but also perhaps by virtue of the barrel aging. The carbonation level is near perfect, giving it a great amount of lift, but not nearly enough that it becomes erratic of uneven, and instead just enough that it sublimates lightly off the tongue, like silken velvet.

Drinkability: This one grew on me as time went on. Nonetheless, the elderberries were just a little much, a little strong, a little intense. That being said, if you toned down the tartness on this one, I would trade for this shit every single year, because the process aspects (appearance, mouthfeel) are perfect, the base beer and barrel aging components are very nice. Though it looks like my score is all over the map, it's really just the berry notes (in the taste) that bring this one down to where it is, composite-wise. If those were a little more balanced, we'd be looking at a solid base beer with a beautifully balanced barrel aging component and fantastic peripherals. At 12.0% abv, I can't give it much more than a 4.5, and the taste score takes it down to a 4.0 at the top end, but I think it deserves that top end drinkability ... there really aren't any other major flaws here.

Serving type: bottle

12-24-2010 07:24:52 | More by CrellMoset
Photo of caddybuyer
caddybuyer

New Jersey

3.35/5  rDev -18.3%
look: 4 | smell: 4.5 | taste: 3 | feel: 3 | overall: 3

Poured at cellar temperature from a 750 into a tulip glass.

Batch #4. I picked this up in the spring and thought I'd crack it open.

A-Blackness with garnet highlights that can be seen in the pour but only at the edges when held to light. Thick, creamy tan head that settles fairly rapidly.

S-Pungent and robust. Berry, vanilla, bourbon, molasses, chocolate. The nose is truly decadent. I am expecting greatness.

T-Sour astringent elderberry hits the palate first. The initial impression is the taste doesn't live up to the promise of the nose. It hides the abv well and is a bit creamy, but less so than I had expected, Belgian yeast and darker fruits establish themselves mid pour followed by more sourness and a burned astringent finish of oak and spent ashtray. This batch could really benefit from some sweetness and body. Glad I opened this as nothing in the aging process is going to cure these ills. Bummer.

M-Decent balanced carbonation is the best thing I can say here. Slighly creamy but very light bodied for this type of ale.

D-This one was a letdown. Saved it for the holidays and I'm glad I only bought one (this set me back $25) I love barrel aged ales, I love strong Belgians, I love strong fruit ales but this one does not hit the highs that I expected. Looking over the reviews I feel I am drinking a different brew. I'm not a fan of sours, although I can appreciate them, and if thats your thing, give it a whirl. Hopefully, you won't be as letdown as I was.

Serving type: bottle

12-24-2010 01:04:08 | More by caddybuyer
Photo of DaveHS
DaveHS

California

4.33/5  rDev +5.6%
look: 4 | smell: 4.5 | taste: 4.5 | feel: 4 | overall: 4

Batch #4, poured into a Duvel tulip.

A-Pours dark brown, nearly black, with an inch of chocolate milk colored head. Leaves patchy rings of lace.

S-Bourbon oak, fruit tartness, vanilla, condensed milk, milk chocolate.

T/M-Very interesting. Reminds me of chocolate covered cherries. The body is reminiscent of chocolate milk. Full bodied and silky with a tart finish.

D-Great! Reminds me of the Bell's Cherry Stout, but with some barrel character. Highly recommended.

Serving type: bottle

12-23-2010 23:10:15 | More by DaveHS
Photo of cosmicevan
cosmicevan

New York

3.58/5  rDev -12.7%
look: 4 | smell: 3.5 | taste: 3.5 | feel: 4 | overall: 3.5

A-popped open a batch 4 and poured into an oversized snifter. poured a shiny deep purple with a thin head that was quickly eaten up by the alcohol.

S-smells like spiked grape juice. berries and malt. sweetness and cooling in the background. very wine-like.

T-in a word "Merlot"

M/D-Finally, I've found the cross-over craft brew for the wine lover. This beer is mean. It's strong. Smells, feels, and tastes like a nicely balanced merlot with none of the dryness. Aged in Bourbon Barrels? Maybe that was a typo on the label, but the elderberries take over and this beer doesn't resemble any other bourbon barrel aged beer I've ever had.

Serving type: bottle

12-09-2010 02:55:52 | More by cosmicevan
Photo of Beerenauslese
Beerenauslese

California

4.33/5  rDev +5.6%
look: 4 | smell: 4.5 | taste: 4.5 | feel: 4 | overall: 4

Pours very dark brown with a tan head that quickly dissipates. Leaves a fine ring of foam with some lacing.

Complex aromas of roasted malt, vanilla, grapes, dark fruits.

Charred malty backbone supports the acidic, vinous elderberries, with loads of bourbon and vanilla from the barrels.

Body is medium and carbonation is light, giving this a more winey mouthfeel with just a touch of spritz.

A nice sipping beer. The elderberries give it a different dimension altogether. Definitely a sharing beer at 12%, however, the alcohol is not very noticeable.

Serving type: bottle

12-06-2010 08:57:23 | More by Beerenauslese
Photo of mothman
mothman

United Kingdom (Wales)

3.6/5  rDev -12.2%
look: 3.5 | smell: 4 | taste: 3.5 | feel: 3.5 | overall: 3.5

Batch 4

Poured into Founders snifter

Pours a light layer of tan head. Some thin splattered lace. Color is a copper brown, but settles near black.

Aroma: Notes of cocoa powder and dark chocolate with waves of bourbon up front. It also has notes of the elderberries, vanilla, and some roasted malts. It is fairly sweet.

Taste: The elderberries stick out a lot and it tastes a bit sour, almost like sour cherries. I get a lot of roasted malts, light bourbon and some chocolate. The sourness takes away a lot from this beer. It is creamy and has some vanilla sweetness. It does show some bourbon notes.

Mouthfeel: Tart, creamy, smooth. Medium to full bodied with a medium amount of carbonation. Ends roasted, but clean.

Overall, it is an alright beer, but I was expecting more chocolate flavors and less elderberries. The elderberries really took this beer over it seems. Somewhat drinkable.

Serving type: bottle

11-12-2010 00:26:09 | More by mothman
Photo of kbutler1
kbutler1

Minnesota

3.6/5  rDev -12.2%
look: 4.5 | smell: 3.5 | taste: 3.5 | feel: 4 | overall: 3.5

Bottle. Pours a very dark brown color with a 1 finger head that settles down to form a nice collared medium bubbled light tan head. Swirling causes the head to form a nice tan coaster. The aroma is somewhat odd with chocolate notes mixed with a sweet/tart berry note. Hmm, the taste is rather different with an almost sweet tart taste to it, must be the elderberries. So far I don't get too much bourbon barrel in either the nose or the taste. Medium mouthfeel. Nice left on the glass as I drink this down. A very interesting beer even as it warms. Tartness somewhat bites at the tongue followed by some grape like sweetness and some dark chocolate notes. Finishes with a slight alocohol warming sensation. Different, I wish it had more chocolate flavors and less elderberry tartness.

Serving type: bottle

11-12-2010 00:24:30 | More by kbutler1
Photo of Thorpe429
Thorpe429

Illinois

4.05/5  rDev -1.2%
look: 4 | smell: 4 | taste: 4 | feel: 4.5 | overall: 4

Reviewed from notes.

Poured into a tulip. Appearance is dark brown with a tan head and some light lacing. Nose is tart cherries, berries, oak, light vanilla, and some roast. Fairly complex but I think what I had was too young and hadn't quite integrated yet. The taste is similar with roast and tart fruits. Really nice feel with a bit of tart character and a good body. Drinks well now and this should age supremely.

Serving type: bottle

11-04-2010 15:11:47 | More by Thorpe429
Photo of route66pubs
route66pubs

California

4.08/5  rDev -0.5%
look: 4.5 | smell: 4 | taste: 4 | feel: 4.5 | overall: 4

Thanks to torps for the trade. Tasting batch no 4.

Pours a deep black with the slightest purple tint to it, with a nice brown head that subsides after the pour. Some head retention with tiny bubbles sticking to the sides of the glass, but mostly it dissolves well.

Some grape-like, very fruity aromas in the immediate forefront of the nose upon the first smell. If I did not know what elderberries smelled like, I would never know after smelling this beer, but that fruity grape (not to be confused with grapefruit) is certainly it. Sweet chocolate aromas soon follow. This beer claims to have finished aging in bourbon barrels, but there is no hint of this in the aroma at all. Very, very delicious smell.

This is just an amazingly, intensely, flavorful beer from the get-go. Elderberry is certainly there at the front, with a thick, rich, sweet flavor pushing past all of its counterparts. (Aging should pull this back nicely which makes me want to get another bottle!) Some sweet chocolate from the aroma follows, along with maybe a tannic tobacco, almost like a good Pinot Noir might give off. Hints of bourbon are there, most in the mouthfeel than the actual taste, but definitely there.

As mentioned, the bourbon comes through in the mouthfeel, primarily with an alcohol burn that is unforgettable and unmistakable. It's a bit of a distraction, though, but again, aging this would certainly ease that back quite a bit, thus my score will give an extra half point more than I would have for that cellar-able quality. Otherwise, this a smooth, lightly carbonated wonderful experience in the mouth, leaving just a hint of dryness (tannic tobacco again?) which clamors for more exposure.

Small marks off for drinkability only for that alcohol burn. As much as I love bourbon flavor and bourbon aroma, the burn that many bourbon barrel aged beers have as a result just leaves me wondering why I like them fresh. This again follows suit, but again leaves me wanting to get some age on here. Elderberries are not something I enjoy a lot of either, but they work extremely well with this beer in my opinion, and provide for a raised drinkability quotient and an overall enjoyable experience.

Definitely something worth coming back to for me. A very enjoyable beer that I would love to experience with the right food (a vibrant goat cheese comes to mind!) and right people!

Serving type: bottle

11-02-2010 03:48:51 | More by route66pubs
Photo of AgentZero
AgentZero

Illinois

4.22/5  rDev +2.9%
look: 4 | smell: 4 | taste: 4.5 | feel: 4 | overall: 4

Thanks to spycow aka Chris (I think) for opening this up.

A - Very brown color, tan head, about two fingers. When not held up to the light looks almost black.

S - Lot of molasses, charred roast, burnt caramel, interesting berry flavors come to the nose. Very unique.

T - A great, unique taste. All of the smells on the nose are in the taste, and all nicely melded. This is unlike anything I have had before, the berry flavor really adds a lot to it.

M - Full bodied, moderate carbonation.

D - Pretty good for 12%, would like to sample this in greater quantities some time when I have had less to drink.

Serving type: bottle

11-01-2010 01:57:30 | More by AgentZero
Photo of ktrillionaire
ktrillionaire

Florida

4.4/5  rDev +7.3%
look: 3.5 | smell: 4 | taste: 4.5 | feel: 4 | overall: 5

A - It appears deeper than a quad, more porter-ish, with a short-lived head.

S - The aroma is nicely malty, raisin-y and slightly mulled-spicy. I am not familiar with elderberries, excepting for the Monty Python reference, so I cannot discern their impact. It certainly smells promising.

T - The promise of the aroma is answered, and then some... Notes of maltiness are expressed in the range of cocoa and plum with a long toffee finish. Also, there is some caramel latte flavor that is familiar and pleasant. The bourbon barrel makes a delicate but vital contribution in the form of a rounding buttery vanilla nuance. Additionally, I think a year of aging has served this brew well.

M - Very nice, and appropriate for the style.

D - Awesome stuff. Worth cellaring for a year.

Serving type: bottle

10-15-2010 18:34:40 | More by ktrillionaire
Photo of hophead247
hophead247

California

4.2/5  rDev +2.4%
look: 4 | smell: 5 | taste: 4 | feel: 4 | overall: 4

Pours a very dark bronze brown color with a medium tan head. Decent head retention and lacing. The aroma is strong bourbon, oak, vanilla and elderberry, along with some notes of maple, cherries, citrus and something very faintly vegetal. Taste is tart elderberry notes, along with chocolate, bourbon, vanilla, oak, citrus. Slight alcohol warmth. Full bodied. Different than anything I ever had before with the berry/bourbon flavors, but I dig it...

Serving type: bottle

10-13-2010 02:15:36 | More by hophead247
Photo of DavoleBomb
DavoleBomb

Ohio

3.38/5  rDev -17.6%
look: 4.5 | smell: 4.5 | taste: 3 | feel: 3 | overall: 3

Poured into a snifter. Batch #4.

4.5 A: Pretty damn close to black in color. Two fingers of super creamy tan head. Pretty good retention considering the ABV and lots of lacing. Very nice here.

4.5 S: Great balance among the components. Bourbon is right in my ideal strength level and complements the beer rather than dominating it. Bourbon lends a boozy, leather, vanilla, and oak component. The strange fruity smell must be the elderberries. Sweet caramel, toffee, plum, and dark cherry.

3.0 T: The taste is a big step down from the appearance and smell. It's really lacking depth at the malt level and the body is too light. Elderberry tartness is strong as is the bourbon components. The caramel and toffee are just about removed. This tastes like a watered down bourbon with elderberries added. Alcohol is extremely well hidden especially given the light body. Disappointing here.

3.0 M: Lightish body. Too damn light and really brought down the taste. Good moderate carbonation and somewhat creamy.

3.0 D: Great aroma, but the taste and mouthfeel simply aren't up to par.

Serving type: bottle

10-11-2010 22:47:47 | More by DavoleBomb
Photo of TMoney2591
TMoney2591

Illinois

4.33/5  rDev +5.6%
look: 4 | smell: 4.5 | taste: 4.5 | feel: 4 | overall: 4

Served in a Dogfish Head snifter.

Big thanks to cuzco for this bottle!

I hope I like this Nor'Easter more than the one that resulted in my car getting buried in snow this past winter. It pours an opaque black-brown (it may just be the label influencing my thoughts, but it almost seems like a really deep royal purple...) topped by nearly a finger of tan foam. The nose comprises black cherries, bourbon, oak, raspberries (elderberries? I have no idea what they smell like...or look like...frankly, if it weren't for Monty Python and the Holy Grail I would never have even heard o' those damn things...), maple syrup, vanilla, butterscotch, plums, blueberries, molasses, and brown sugar. Whew. What a nose, baby! I'm glad I listened to Arbi (below) and let this guy warm up before I approached it. The taste is also heavy on the dark fruits and berries, with some figs and raisins added for good measure; the spices are also back, with some added cinnamon, nutmeg, and cloves; and a hint of tartness (it fluctuates between cherry, raspberry, and vinegar) makes a short cameo as well. It's all good, baby! The body is a rich medium, with a light carbonation and a thick, smooth feel. Overall, a rather tasty brew, one I wish i had access to more often. Get some!

Serving type: bottle

08-24-2010 04:20:17 | More by TMoney2591
Photo of Arbitrator
Arbitrator

California

4.75/5  rDev +15.9%
look: 4 | smell: 4.5 | taste: 5 | feel: 5 | overall: 4.5

Chilled bottle into a glass. Sampled over 2 hours or so. Thanks to Fletcher (boatshoes) for this!

A: Pours a pitch black body with reddish tint. No real light penetration. The beige cap vanishes in a minute or so, but it leaves a thick collar with broken film on top of the beer.

S: When cold, the beer is very bourbon-dominated, and has a tart/sour cherry aroma (I'm guessing this is the elderberries that the label mentions -- but I have no idea what elderberries smell and taste like, so I'm going with cherries). As it warms, the two aromas balance each other out, and the beer expresses notes of coconut, vanilla, oak, and brown sugar.

T: When cold, it's just bourbon- and tart cherry-dominated, just like the nose. As it warms, it really starts to get going. A subtle orange pith flavor comes out, as do brown sugar, coconut, vanilla. The interplay between the flavors is excellent; the cherries (really elderberries) develop into a vinous flavor that complements the vanilla well. The finish carries tannic cherry skins and oak, as well as an orange peel bitterness. Also a hint of spice and some roasty chocolate in the aftertaste. Surprisingly well-integrated.

M: Big, bold flavors in a delicate balance. I'm impressed. In fruit-aged beers I tend to be sensitive to the tartness and tannins of the skins. By the end of the beer I'm just sick of both. Here, both qualities are restrained in such a way that each sip is refreshing instead of compounding the residue of the previous one. The carbonation is low-medium, so I can't really call it scrubbing. The beer simply does it right. And I should mention: it has no heat. It's not syrupy. It has some heft without being heavy. Just right.

D: Drank the entire 750mL by myself. This is a top-notch beer. Sample it just below room temperature and let it work its magic on you. This is a beer that opens up in a very impressive way.

Serving type: bottle

08-19-2010 07:04:49 | More by Arbitrator
Photo of Georgiabeer
Georgiabeer

Georgia

4.68/5  rDev +14.1%
look: 3.5 | smell: 4.5 | taste: 5 | feel: 4.5 | overall: 4.5

Pours a slightly murky very dark brown with little head. The smell, however, is something different- rich Bourbon notes along with some fruity elderberry as the beer warms. There are definite barrel notes as well, but as an undercurrent, not in-your-face wood. Very nice marriage between the coconut, brown sugar and sultana notes of the Bourbon, the fruitier berries, and a vanilla and lightly roasty finish. If anything, the taste is even better with the flavors even more vibrant than then the aromas. The Bourbon is fairly heavy handed- but I love that. The elderberries add a complex vinous note, and the oak lends a spicy finish, while the malt and roastiness provides an even keel for the other flavors to layer themselves on. Magnificent! Rich and Bourbony in the mouth, but oh, so smooth! What a lovely beer!

Serving type: bottle

08-15-2010 22:39:28 | More by Georgiabeer
Photo of PittBeerGirl
PittBeerGirl

Pennsylvania

3.6/5  rDev -12.2%
look: 4.5 | smell: 4 | taste: 3.5 | feel: 4 | overall: 3

Batch 001= received in a trade awhile ago.

A-Body is an opaque dark brown hue. Pours with a 1/2 finger creamy off-white head-has good rentention the whole way through but little lacing left behind in the glass.

S-Elderberry, raisin, over-ripe plum, cinnamon sugar, nose is very dark- a hint of bourbon as well.

T- Cinnamon sugar is the most dominant upfront-a slight dried (dark) fruitiness comes through as well. Flavor is sweet and overripened-very similar to an RIS that focuses on dark fruit. Hints of anise and licorice are also noticable in the flavor. A slight alcohol heat lingers on the palate.

M- Medium-tingly carbonation with a quite thick heavy weight body.

D- This is much like an IRS that overemphasizes the dark fruity flavors. Overripened fruit everywhere- its thick, heavy, and wintery as well. What I do enjoy about it is the extra flavor of cinnamon sugar. Decent overall-but probably my least favorite of the captain lawrence lineup so far.

Serving type: bottle

06-28-2010 03:33:50 | More by PittBeerGirl
Photo of macktbone
macktbone

California

4.43/5  rDev +8%
look: 4 | smell: 4.5 | taste: 4.5 | feel: 4 | overall: 4.5

Served in celebration of my graduating nursing school, June 13 2010. I got this from a cool trade over a year ago and decided the time was right to check it out.

A- dark and stouty, relatively thick head on a vigorous pour that sinks into almost nothing. Looks carbonated for the amount of alcohol.

S- heavy and thick with bourbon, not the sweet stuff either, we're talking the barrel soaked, grandpa bottle.

T- take your breath away, vanilla and bourbon. Tons of fruits and tarts.

M- very nice for the bourbon match-up.

D- tough bottle to get through because of the complexities presented. Very nice sample that all stout drinkers will appreciate for the complexity and skill it represents.

Serving type: bottle

06-14-2010 04:03:02 | More by macktbone
Photo of Dubber55
Dubber55

New York

3.63/5  rDev -11.5%
look: 4 | smell: 4 | taste: 3.5 | feel: 3.5 | overall: 3.5

Batch #4

Pours a murky brown with ruby highlights. One finger of tan/mocha head. Soapy bubbles. Some spotty lacing.

The aromas consist mostly of tart green apples, cherries, and elderberries. A bit of Belgian yeast as well.

Up front I am getting a lot of tart fruits. Cherry, elderberry, blackberry. Some green apple as well and belgian yeast. Has a vinous quality to it. This beer is also quite tannic, most likely from the barrel influence. The finish is dry- I taste bourbon, oak, and vanilla. For some reason, all of these flavors just don't seem to meld together.

The mouthfeel is light to medium. Seems a bit watery and thin at times. Low carbonation.

I really don't detect much alcohol. There is a bit of heat from the bourbon but that does not really hinder the drinkability. The dry and tannic character of this beer does begin to wear on me a bit.

Serving type: bottle

06-02-2010 01:29:33 | More by Dubber55
Photo of cpetrone84
cpetrone84

Pennsylvania

3.68/5  rDev -10.2%
look: 5 | smell: 3.5 | taste: 3.5 | feel: 4.5 | overall: 3.5

Big thanks to Sarah for sharing this at our tasting. Batch 1.

A-pours a dark brown, almost black liquid with a ton of tight creamy tan head.

S-a good bit of roasted malts, chocolate, touch of roasted coffee. there is a hint of oak and bourbon underneath. The back has a touch of sweetness with what I am assuming are the elderberries followed by some light booziness in the back.

T-lots of roasted malts, chocolate, caramel, brown sugar, touch of slightly burnt coffee. boozy in the back with a light sweetness of berries and plums.

M-very smooth and creamy on the palate, lighter full body with a good carbonation and crisp finish that is quite dry.

D-this is a pretty drinkable beer, very much like a stout with a good sweetness to it that isn't like the big malty sweetness of most imperial stouts.

Serving type: bottle

05-31-2010 23:58:27 | More by cpetrone84
Photo of muttyd
muttyd

Massachusetts

4.13/5  rDev +0.7%
look: 4 | smell: 4 | taste: 4.5 | feel: 3 | overall: 4

A - Deep brown with ruby highlights. Thin tan head.

S - Roasted malt, tart fruit, molasses. Slight funk/oak/vanilla peaking through.

T - Sweet sugar/fruits upfront. Estery, yeasty, and funky. Very well balanced Belgian dark ale. Sour/astringent finish that is reminiscent of sour cherries.

M - Medium body, very sticky. Warming alcohol.

D - Another outstanding brew from CL. Love the style, so I am a bit biased.

Serving type: bottle

05-29-2010 02:28:40 | More by muttyd
Photo of mikeyv35
mikeyv35

New York

4.55/5  rDev +11%
look: 4.5 | smell: 4.5 | taste: 4.5 | feel: 4 | overall: 5

Date: 05/23/2010
Type: 750ml. Bottle
Vintage: Batch 4
Glassware: Portsmouth Tulip

Poured a dark mahoghany in color w/ subtle ruby highlights, a 1/2 finger light brown head, w/ nice lacing. Appearance was superb! Nose was of berries, funk, oak, vanilla, and a touch of bourbon and coffee. Taste was pretty much on point w/ the nose, berries, sour funkiness up front, and finishes w/ slight coffee and bourbon notes. Extremely complex and interesting brew!
Medium bodied and leaves pretty clean. I could drink this all night, but I would not be standing. Polished off a 750ml. myself w/ ease. The sour aspect of this brew makes it extremely drinkable. Great brew that I will be drinking again very soon.

Serving type: bottle

05-24-2010 17:01:28 | More by mikeyv35
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meatyard

Pennsylvania

4.33/5  rDev +5.6%
look: 4 | smell: 4 | taste: 4.5 | feel: 4 | overall: 4.5

Batch 4, Thanks to AltBock for picking this one up for me.

Pours a murky, nearly opaque brown. There is a 1/2-finger tan head as it is poured but it vanishes almost immediately leaving spotty lacing.
The smell is not very strong below 50 degrees but as it warms a red wine like aroma starts to show up as well as chocolate.
The taste is very nice with tart elderberries, some sourness in the finish that lingers. There does seem to be complexities in this beer that come out over time as you drink it, from fruit, dried fruit, vanilla, oak and chocolate.
Mouthfeel is medium to light but it feels right. The ABV just is not noticeable.
This has excellent drinkability despite the 11%. It is a beer that should be drunk slowly to enjoy the changes. Drinking slowly helps prevent being overwhelmed by the elderberry & sourness too.

Serving type: bottle

05-16-2010 01:17:13 | More by meatyard
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ShadesOfGray

Pennsylvania

3.78/5  rDev -7.8%
look: 4.5 | smell: 3.5 | taste: 4 | feel: 3.5 | overall: 3.5

Poured from a capped 750ml bottle into my Chimay chalice. Pours a dark brown color, pretty flat looking until the last couple seconds of the pour when the small medium tan head, creamy...and dissapates pretty quickly. Lacing is spotty, fizzy, and quick sliding.

Aroma is very light...but mostly average for a Belgian style beer. A lot of Belgian yeast present, very faint fruit notes, and not boozy in the nose...surprisingly for 11%.

Flavor: Hmmm, some semi sour cherries are present which is dragging down the normal Belgian sweetness. Belgian yeast, candi sugar, and somewhat of a roasted maltiness. Very high carbonation, light body, drinkability is somewhat lacking for some reason. Booze aspect isn't strong, again...which surprises me for 11%. A decent Belgian style beer!

Serving type: bottle

05-11-2010 01:40:44 | More by ShadesOfGray
Nor' Easter from Captain Lawrence Brewing Co.
91 out of 100 based on 295 ratings.