Obscura Arborea - Telegraph Brewing Company
Displayed for educational use only; do not reuse.
Ratings: 38 | Reviews: 26 | Display Reviews Only:
4/5 rDev +18.3%
I read elsewhere this was a gusher, so I opened this after it was chilled to about 45 degrees. Cork loosened with a resounding champagne pop, but no gushing. Hard to pour this one without the head expanding voluminously. About a 2 inch head was the best I could do, which was eggshell white, thick and foamy. Has pretty good head retention, and leaves lots of sticky lace on the glass.
Smells of lemon, dark cherries, brown sugar, barnyard funk, and old wood.
I like how this beer tastes, and it is not disappointing, but it doesn't exactly fit the brewer's style objective of a sour cherry Oude Bruin. it is not as sour as Oude Bruins typically are, such as Rodenbach. The lacto takes it in a lemony sour direction, yet it is also characterized by a dark caramel malt sweetness, accompanied by a metallic cola taste and spiciness, reminding me of an abbey ale with a lacto fermentation. It has a husky and spicy dark fruit character in the finish, probably dried dark cherries. The flavor cherry only comes through in the long dry finish. Oak is there to lend some smoothness but it isn't that prominent in the taste. This beer crosses style boundaries, but it ends up being a smooth and balanced beer.
The carbonation is pretty vigorous, much like champagne when the beer is first poured. Together with the sourness, the carbonation gives it a nicely refreshing mouthfeel.
Telegraph has been bending styles for awhile now. This is an interesting dark, slightly sour beer that comes off pretty smooth in the end. I'd definitely have this again.
07-09-2011 17:48:24 | More by Beerenauslese
4.05/5 rDev +19.8%
This is the most violently carbonated beer I've ever opened. Just loosening the cage starts the cork sliding out, and once it comes out (with a very loud pop), foam immediately starts gushing out of the bottle. I had a glass ready, as I had been warned, but once that was filled up with foam and the bottle showed no signs of stopping, I had to scramble for a second glass. There was foam coming out of the bottle for several full minutes, with me trying to pour out enough to get it to stop without losing too much, and still more ended up down the drain than I would have liked. Crazy.
A: If you can get it poured, it's a dark slightly translucent brown amber, with mountains of sticky off white head. Head retains for a while, and leaves solid walls of lacing.
S: Tart funkiness, with citrus backed by a solid malty sweetness.
T: Nicely balanced blend of sweet and tart, with a fair amount of funk on top. The alcohol is very well hidden.
M: Very very highly carbonated, medium to full body.
Overall this was pretty interesting; tasty, but unique. If I have it again I'll need a bigger glass around to catch the first 1/3 of a bottle or so that comes out in foam.
07-30-2011 02:05:09 | More by seand
4.13/5 rDev +22.2%
750 mL bottle poured into a Mikasa tulip glass
The beer is creamed-copper in appearance (if that's a legitimate color description) with a huge pillow-y head that never recedes. Tones of woodsy dank and unripe berries float about, but in the ether - the nose lingers and takes a few whiffs to pull it in.
The taste is much more pronounced with toffee-like malts playing against tart cherries. There are notes of drying oak that mix well with a subtle hop snap, keeping the sweet aspects in check. Alcohol is apparent but not aggressive. Finishes long, sweet and sour.
I don't get the low (or average) reviews here. My bottle's been aging for a little over a year (maybe longer) so that might be what 'smoothed' it out, but I don't think that's the entire reason. The brew produces a super-sudsy head, almost billowy, but it doesn't FEEL over-carbonated, something I can't stand. Over-carbing wouldn't get better with age. And I'm trying to pinpoint why the consensus feels this has a disjointed flavor profile - I'm getting a pretty smooth play of sweet and sour and bitter washing over the palate. Hmm...maybe I got a good batch? Or there's a bit of group-think here on BA? Well, no need to speculate...I've been drinking a lot of this style lately and this beer, at least my bottle, is a good example.
11-15-2012 06:00:41 | More by rand
3.55/5 rDev +5%
Pours a milk chocolate brown with a ridicously foamy head though the bottle wasnt the gusher others said it was. Nose has simple lemony citrus, rhubarb, sour cherry and an earthiness to it. The taste is a bit muddied by old wood that didnt seem to integrate its flavors well, bright tart citrus and rhubarb pie with almost a creaminess to it. Very nice carbonation to balance the sour acidity and the wood actually plays well in the mouthfeel as well as the abv being very hidden. A simple easy drinking 9% beer.
06-26-2011 06:12:13 | More by Trilogy31
3.65/5 rDev +8%
Appearance: Light brown color, tons of thick off-white head that fades slowly. The pressure in the bottle blew the cork out as soon as the cage was removed. Tons of lacing.
Smell: Tart, malty undertones, earthy, dark fruit, sour cherries.
Taste: Tart, sour cherries, dark fruit, earthy, oak, caramel, raisins, plums.
Mouthfeel: medium bodied, moderate carbonation, silky, creamy, somewhat tart.
Overall: Another tasty beer from Telegraph. Not as sour as I'd have liked, but very drinkable.
03-07-2012 06:03:01 | More by phichifiji00
4.22/5 rDev +24.9%
Poured out and all turned into foam, once in started to settle down. It was a very deep dark orange leaving spotty lacing around the glass.
smells of carmel and fruit. then just a hint of malt
The only way i can think to describe the taste is, like an apple juice with an ale bite to it. Can definitely taste the alc. in it.
mouth feel in med to full body. little bit dry afterwards.
overall the is a good beer. have to give it a little time for the foam to settle down but is worth the wait
10-22-2011 23:03:02 | More by rtaps
2.05/5 rDev -39.3%
Poured into a styro coffee cup in a hotel room--better than out of the bottle me thinks. Couldn't really tell you the color due to the cup plus 3" foamy head that refused to subside. Wasn't a gusher, but highly carbed and ready to foam at the slightest hint of a nucleation site. You've been warned.
Smells like highly diluted balsamic vinegar. And that's about it. Very one-noted. Just kinda blahhh.
Tastes was a little less blahhh. Maybe more of a blah. With the target being Flanders Oude Bruin, both the sweet and sour were way off the mark. More precise, though there is some sour there, there is really no sweet balance. In fact, this finishes unpleasantly bitter... oddly enough, a coffee bitter, with the coffee likely coming from the roasted malts and the bitter from the oak. It is not very refreshing as a result.
Not my cup o' brew.
10-05-2011 04:23:15 | More by jwjon1
2.93/5 rDev -13.3%
I went to the store excited to get a local sour beer on my travels here in southern California, and was excited to try this beer because I will be going to Santa Barbara soon. Unfortunately I was very dissapointed. I may be too harsh of a critic, but it seems too young/commercial - but not so professional. Granted the sour taste is there- it just seems like they are just getting started on this project. It is very cloudy/chill haze. It seems rushed, and is WAY over carbonated in the bottle i got- making for a 1 inch pour into a snifter full of foam. really dissapointed- should have stuck with Russian River, or lost Abbey.
I left it in the fridge over night after that review to see if the rest of the bottle would get better with a little fresh air- Still way over carbonated, but the beer did get better.. still hazy though
06-17-2011 03:13:20 | More by guausullivan8
Obscura Arborea from Telegraph Brewing Company
79 out of 100 based on 38 ratings.