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Cuvee De Castleton - Captain Lawrence Brewing Co.

Not Rated.
Cuvee De CastletonCuvee De Castleton

Displayed for educational use only; do not reuse.
BA SCORE
97
world-class

441 Ratings
THE BROS
100
world-class

(view ratings)
Ratings: 441
Reviews: 214
rAvg: 4.4
pDev: 8.64%
Wants: 989
Gots: 87 | FT: 6
Brewed by:
Captain Lawrence Brewing Co. visit their website
New York, United States

Style | ABV
American Wild Ale |  9.00% ABV

Availability: Rotating

Notes/Commercial Description:
No notes at this time.

(Beer added by: Billolick on 05-12-2007)
Beer: Ratings & Reviews
Sort by:  Usefulness | Recent | High | Low | Top Raters | Read the Alström Bros Beer Reviews and Beer Ratings of Cuvee De Castleton Alström Bros
Ratings: 441 | Reviews: 214 | Display Reviews Only:
Photo of Foxman
4.38/5  rDev -0.5%
look: 4 | smell: 4 | taste: 4.5 | feel: 4.5 | overall: 4.5

It pours a hazy and maniacally carbonated bright lemon yellow. Two fingers of white head snap, crackle, and pop away leaving a churning spring-fed surface. Boomerangs of lacing slide down the inside of the glass.

In the aroma, a light grain sweetness is frisked by big-league crisp esters, markedly dry and lightly spiced. Green apples and a sparkling vinous note duel with a distant tartness and even more distant alcohol.

Upon sipping, the grain is sweet and earthy with a berry impression that is dried by a flex of crisp esters. Along with apple and mild spice, a brut effervescent wine character is brightened by a slight acetic sourness. Alcohol is notable, but it's cool and lays rather low. The tartness intensifies a bit toward the end and a soft pad of biscuit joins a dogged residual sweetness. The finish is very dry and refreshingly clean. It's a lively, sassy, energetic profile with some interesting blends and twists.

Medium bodied, it amps the palate with carbonation and a seriously assertive crispness.

It seems to want to be several things, but it pulls together and ends up a high-torque, clean and fresh melding of personalities. It manages to be many things but never unduly schizophrenic. The flavors and sensations combine to make a drinkable, enjoyable impression, and the ABV is incorporated well enough that it doesn't take away at all from the positives. The release was anticipated, and the delivery was well worth waiting for. Thanks for the bottle Stacy, and Bravo to the brewers.

Foxman, Sep 23, 2008
Photo of younger35
4.4/5  rDev 0%
look: 3.5 | smell: 4.5 | taste: 4.5 | feel: 4 | overall: 4.5

Received this brew quite some time ago from LittleBreeze. Been sitting on for a bit to let it sour a bit more. Drank from my Stone India Pale ale flute.

Batch #2 bottled June 2008.

Appearance- Pours a crystal clear yellowish hay with a nice big one finger white head that recedes really quickly. No cap and a very thin collar are left.
Smell- Very fruity and slightly musty with an almost mushroom like dirtiness. The grapes are very abundant and if someone held this up to my nose while blindfolded, I'd definitely guess this was a wine. A slight apple cider like vinegar tartness that somewhat resembles green apples. Very light oak that seems soft and creamy.
Taste- Starts very tart with a big quenching green apple presence. The grapes are somewhat prominent as well and something sort of reminds me of white cranberries. A light bit of citrus adds a bite of acidity. The beer has a sort of light funk but nothing crazy. I don't know if it's because the Brett hasn't fully "kicked in" or the acidity/oak has kept everything in check. Speaking of which the oak is light and has sort of a hazelnut like linger. Some soft vanilla and cream lingers along with some slightly astringent grape skins.
Mouthfeel- Very sharp carbonation with a light to medium body that finishes fairly dry.
Drinkability- Although I think the acidity/tartness is how I like it, it just seems to need something else. It may be the grapes but there is just something off. I know that doesn't sound like a ringing endorsement but this beer is really good. Really really good. It just needs something of which I don't know... Thanks Ginny!!

younger35, Mar 27, 2009
Photo of doucmehu
4.5/5  rDev +2.3%

doucmehu, Mar 01, 2013
Photo of Dreadnaught33
4.25/5  rDev -3.4%
look: 4.5 | smell: 4 | taste: 4.5 | feel: 4 | overall: 4

Bottle thanks to bigsexy410, thanks Ben. Batch 5.

The look is on par for a wild, it has a nice straw yellow color with little head or lacing whatsoever. Hazy and pretty much opaque.

The smell has a heavy white grape aroma with a great tart wild yeast overtone to it that is very cohesive, especially for a sour. Some more welch's grape flavors as well.

The taste follows the smell, with some great dry white grape flavors with a very refined sour flavor, that isn't really in your face but is very elegant overall and certainly tart enough for a sour head. The flavor plays out with some sweetbread and tart flavors, like a nice pastry blend. Quite nice.

Mouth is very dry and decently carbonated, some body to it.

Overall the beer is nice, worth a buy if you're in NY.

Dreadnaught33, Jun 09, 2012
Photo of KickInTheChalice
3.95/5  rDev -10.2%
look: 4 | smell: 4 | taste: 4 | feel: 4 | overall: 3.75

From notes. Batch 2, 3, 4, and 5 tasted side by side. Batch 2 seemed much different than the other two and is worth scoring separately. The overall score is the score of the newer recipe.

Batch 2:
4/4.5/4.75/4/4.25
Batch 3, 4, 5:
4/4/4/4/3.75

Tangerine peach color, transparent with a bit of haze. Lighter, more transparent edges. A small cap fades to a ring fairly quickly.

The aroma is fairly tart, white grape, lemon zest, and peach. Acidic and some musty funk.

The flavor is quite sour, although not quite as extreme as the batch 2. Just a touch of sweetness from the malt, then the white grape comes through a bit. Peach, a bit of tangerine, and then some lemon zest in an escalating sour flavor.

KickInTheChalice, Jan 30, 2013
Photo of Kramerbarthomer
4.5/5  rDev +2.3%

Kramerbarthomer, May 24, 2014
Photo of craytonic
3.78/5  rDev -14.1%
look: 4 | smell: 3.5 | taste: 3.5 | feel: 4 | overall: 4.5

Appearance: Pour is a straw-yellow, medium white head with little/no lacing.

Smell: A bit subdued, with light and sweetish malts. Neither very tart or sour. Strong sauvignon blanc wine element and green apples. Not much funk or oak. Very yeasty.

Taste: Again, light and sweet malts up front, little sourness.

Mouthfeel: Well carbonated, but a bit light and thin.

Drinkability: Disappears, similar to the way a wit disappears on a warm day. I was expecting a bit more from this one.

craytonic, Jan 23, 2010
Photo of IndyDad
4.5/5  rDev +2.3%

IndyDad, Jun 08, 2014
Photo of pwoods
4.15/5  rDev -5.7%
look: 3.5 | smell: 4 | taste: 4.5 | feel: 3.5 | overall: 4

750ml capped brown bottle poured into a Leffe wine/chalice. Batch 2, Notes.

A: Pours a watered down orange juice color. Short, thin white head with little retention and lacing.

S: Tart apples and sour grapes. Not a lot of straight fruitiness. Some kind of burnt aroma? Light farmy, barny aromas and a touch of barrel.

T/M: Mildy sour with some added funk. Really juicy and sweet to balance the tartness. a bit of orange juice astringent citrus starts to come through as it warms. Some nice wine like tannins and leather taste and dry feel. Body is medium light with subdued carbonation.

D: A bit more carbonation would do wonders. Tasty and drinkable, though.

pwoods, Oct 30, 2009
Photo of BeerThursdays
4/5  rDev -9.1%

BeerThursdays, Nov 19, 2011
Photo of CityofBals
3.75/5  rDev -14.8%

CityofBals, Sep 12, 2013
Photo of AKBelgianBeast
4.3/5  rDev -2.3%
look: 3.5 | smell: 4 | taste: 4.5 | feel: 4 | overall: 4.5

Big thanks to an oversharing dmeadows for a great in person trade. Hope you guys enjoyed AK!

Pours a nice yellow gold with a slight tint of orange. Slighty hazy. A nice fizzy head forms, but dissipates faster than methadone in a rehab clinic. Vanished within seconds. No lacing. For any other style, I would knock the appearance down much further, but lambics/wilds arent exactly known for their head retention. And I'd much rather have it this way than have it all over my dining room table like last time *cough* smoke from the oak wine *cough*

Nose is quite good. Ripe crisp juicy granny smith apples. Some brett and barnyard funk, horseblanket etc are defenitely present. Slight peach and some vinous grape and oak.

Taste is very nice. The green apple does jump out in front, along with some vinous grape. Oak and wild yeasts dominate the middle of the palate. Not mouth rapingly sour, but defenitely a sour beer. White grape peaks its head out before the finish and rides to the end, but it is nicely subtle. The finish is beautifully dry, and oak, horseblanket, and slight sweet grape are mixed with more green apple like flavors on the finish and linger into the aftertaste. The barrel aging is well done here. Something about wine barrels just accents a lighter color lambic/wild so well.

Mouthfeel is pretty much spot on for the style. Despite being a notoriously fizzy style, this one is a tiny bit overcarbonated, but just tiny. Dryness on the finish is top notch, and the level of sourness is ideal for a beer of this kind.

Drinkability is quite solid. Easy drinking, especially for being on the high end of the abv spectrum stylewise. The sourness is not too enamel stripping, and the dryness is spot on. The overcarbonation is so slight, that it does not become abrasive but is close.

Overall, a fine wild ale from Captain Lawrence. I like the subtleness of the grape flavor, and the barrel aging is well done. Cant beat a nice blonde wild ale aged in wine casks. First temptation, now this...america has come a long way. It would make me more comfortable to see some better head retention on this one, but aside from that, really no major flaws. A great beer, defenitely one worth seeking out.

PS. Great "Last Call" article entitled "Too Many to Thank" by Scott Vaccaro in the latest BA mag. Volume III, issue II. Awesome.

AKBelgianBeast, Mar 16, 2009
Photo of sideshowe
4.5/5  rDev +2.3%

sideshowe, Dec 06, 2011
Photo of BeerTruth
4.35/5  rDev -1.1%
look: 3.5 | smell: 4.5 | taste: 4.5 | feel: 4.5 | overall: 4

Picked up at the brewery last weekend during the release.

750 ml. bottle poured into a tulip glass. Batch 2.

Pours a murky gold hue with a loud fizzy carbonation that immediately dies down to a thin ring along the outside. No webbing what so ever to speak of. Smell is one you won't forget. Sour white grapes, lemongrass, sweet flowers, brett, and some bready characteristics. The oak is there, but somewhat subtle in the aroma. Very complex beer for the nostrils to enjoy. Tastes begins with sour apples, white grapes, and pears. The woody oak flavors emerge midway with a dry zesty lemon as well. The brett-y goodness is big on the tongue in the aftertaste with a musty pepper flavor and more lemony tartness to finish it off. Light fluffy body with a soft fresh feel. Carbonation is strong and stings the mouth. So much going on with this beer. I feel pretty fortunate to have the opportunity to try this one. Definitely looking forward to seeing what some age will do to this beauty. A truly unique beer that deserves the recognition. Keep up the good work Scott!

BeerTruth, Aug 02, 2008
Photo of meatyard
4.3/5  rDev -2.3%
look: 3.5 | smell: 4 | taste: 4.5 | feel: 4 | overall: 4.5

Batch 4. 375ml bottle. big thanks to onix1ager

Nice to see that it pours out with a fast falling but 1 to 2-finger white head. The color is a hazy but pretty, yellow orange and shows nice carbonation streams. At first pour the body is nearly clear.

The smell is acidic funk, oak and grapes. It would be very wine-like in many respects if not for the funk.

The taste is very acidic and tart, some oak with wine grapes and light citrus. Again, it would be more wine-like if not for the funk which seems to be at a lower level than in the aroma.

Mouthfeel is medium with moderate but nice carbonation and is dry.

Overall: Yeah, this is a fine beer. I wish I had more both to drink & age. This has it all going on, nice tartness, nice funk, oak, vinous quality and complexity. Can't really knock the head much on this either.

meatyard, Apr 30, 2011
Photo of scotv
4.5/5  rDev +2.3%

scotv, Jun 08, 2014
Photo of KeefD
4.63/5  rDev +5.2%
look: 4 | smell: 5 | taste: 4.5 | feel: 5 | overall: 4.5

Huge thanks to Knifestyles for this one!

Batch 3.

Clear golden color with small white head that was gone quickly, no lacing. Aroma is funktastic from the start. The first noticeable quality of the nose is the dirty leather, followed by some lemon/lime sourness, and lightly sweet. Yep, flavor on this is more sweet than it is tart, but there is certainly a nice, although not perfect, balance. The sweetness from the muscot grapes is in the forefront, giving this a nice sweet, tart, citric quality, plenty of lemon and funk in the middle, and the bright dry finish leaves me wanting me more. This is ridiculously tasty. Not as sour or tart many other wilds I've had, but it does just enough for me. The second pour produced a huge yeast haze and an added depth of funk and sour. Background flavors of cheesy funk start come through as it warms, but it still takes a backseat to the sweet/sour citric goodness. Mmmmm... Love it! The oak is well integrated, and this almost has a lactic chardonnay like taste to me. I love the acidic residue it leaves on my lips after each sip. Good stuff! Carbonation is just perfect. Not too spritzy, yet noticeable, and gives a nice prickly feeling on the tongue without being so abrasive as to wash away all the goodness. 8%? Really? I can't taste any alcohol in this thing at all. All in all this a tasty, well-balanced beer, and wish I had more.

Thanks again, Chris!!

KeefD, Nov 17, 2009
Photo of Rado
4.75/5  rDev +8%

Rado, Feb 16, 2014
Photo of alpinebryant
4.43/5  rDev +0.7%
look: 4 | smell: 4.5 | taste: 4.5 | feel: 4 | overall: 4.5

Pours a bright straw yellow almost perfectly clear but for the strong bubbles trying to get to the top. Smell of strong horseblanket brett with some battery acidic smells, belgian malt and some spicey belgian golden ale aromas.

Taste of delicious golden ale spiked with a brett tonic of strong horseblanket twang and acid. All delicious to me , probably not to anybody who does not like wild ales. Tastes so refreshing out of the bottle at cold temperatures that it is tempting to just drink it all at once at whatever temperature it happened to be when you opened it. Fortunately, I was patient as this only comes around once a year and is hard to acquire at that. As it warms up, the grapes really become more prevalent, mixing with oak, and lightly caramelized sugars. The finish is dry and not unlike one that you would get from a good bottle of champagne, finishing with a nice little bitter twang on the end of your tongue.
If only this were released more often... Highly Recommended

alpinebryant, Oct 16, 2010
Photo of zrab11
4.5/5  rDev +2.3%

zrab11, Jan 20, 2014
Photo of barleywinebrewer
4.1/5  rDev -6.8%
look: 3.5 | smell: 4 | taste: 4.5 | feel: 4 | overall: 3.5

thanks to azurelimits for this via trade! Having tried one other captain lawrence brew I looked forward to this release and hoped to have a chance to try this beer.

A - the first beer I had from them was a gusher and this being recently released I was still cautious of a repeat gush. I was right. A loud pop, a second, a burst of beer gushed forth as I was quickly tilting the bottle towards my awaiting cup. The beer was a cloudy straw yellow with a burst of white foam overtaking the glass and ultimately settling down to a steady ring at the side of the glass.
S - sour acidic notes, citric notes, white grapes and a musty note.
T - similar to the nose but with additions of oak, lime, sweet tarts.
M - medium bodied, over carbonated fizzy notes with a tart finish
D - I liked this beer for almost the entire package. The overcarbonation detracted from the experience for me.

glad I tried this shortly after it's release. I'd be concerned about it becoming a big gusher at 6-12 months and worse if held longer than that. I like where this brewery is taking it's beers. I just wish they could get the carbonation under control. I'd recommend trying it while young. Any age on it and I'd prepare for a gusher!

barleywinebrewer, Aug 04, 2008
Photo of axeman9182
4.38/5  rDev -0.5%
look: 4 | smell: 4.5 | taste: 4.5 | feel: 3.5 | overall: 4.5

375 mL bottle from batch 5, poured into my Duvel tulip.

Cuvee de Castleton pours a golden yellow, with a good amount of clarity. Maybe a finger and a half of white foam caps the beer, before fading quickly and without leaving any lacing behind. The nose has lots of white wine-like acidity. There's also a distinct oakines present, and just a hint of brettanomyces funk. There's just a touch of fruitiness right on the front end of each sip. As with the nose, a vinous tartness fills the lion's share of the flavor profile. A tropical fruit like brett funk provides a nice bookend around the acidity, before a light oakiness fades in for the finish. The mouthfeel's a little slick. The combination of a slightly heavy body, and carbonation that's a little bit dull just misses the mark. Despite one or two technical flaws, Cuvee de Castleton still comes together stunningly well. Muscat grapes, oak barrel aging, and brettanomyces all come together to produce a great wild ale.

axeman9182, Jun 26, 2012
Photo of joepais
4.38/5  rDev -0.5%
look: 4 | smell: 4.5 | taste: 4.5 | feel: 4.5 | overall: 4

Thanks a bunch to little breeze for sending this treat along
I have been sitting on this batch two bottle for a while .I cracked it open last Thursday. Review from notes I just found. Bottle split three ways in tulip glasses. It produced a short lasting white head on a cloudy greenish yellow body.
The first thing that hit me was the wonderful Bret character in the aroma along with that comes some lemon and a slight note of sour apple. Nice feel in the mouth department comes off like champagne. The flavor is reminiscent of the nose. A nice tartness reminding me of lemons and sour apples were just some of the flavors I got.
This is an exceptional Wild ale reminded me of Gueuze in a lot of ways. The drinkability is right on for a sour. I will seek this one out again, by far my favorite Captain Lawrence

joepais, Sep 10, 2009
Photo of Stigs
5/5  rDev +13.6%

Stigs, Jan 09, 2013
Photo of jkane101
5/5  rDev +13.6%

jkane101, Dec 17, 2011
Cuvee De Castleton from Captain Lawrence Brewing Co.
97 out of 100 based on 441 ratings.