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Melange A Trois - Reserve Series Aged In French Oak Chardonnay Barrels - Nebraska Brewing Company

Not Rated.
Melange A Trois - Reserve Series Aged In French Oak Chardonnay BarrelsMelange A Trois - Reserve Series Aged In French Oak Chardonnay Barrels

Educational use only; do not reuse.

90 Reviews

(Read More)
Reviews: 90
Hads: 321
Avg: 4.19
pDev: 18.14%
Wants: 97
Gots: 63 | FT: 5
Brewed by:
Nebraska Brewing Company visit their website
Nebraska, United States

Style | ABV
Belgian Strong Pale Ale |  10.00% ABV

Availability: Rotating

Notes & Commercial Description:
Beer added by: RedHaze on 11-16-2008

Our first beer in the Reserve Series, Melange A Trois begins with a wonderfully big Strong Belgian-Style Blonde Ale and moves into the extraordinary category through an additional 6 month French Oak Chardonnay Wine Barrel maturation. The essense of Chardonnay permeates while a subtle sweetness remains from the Ale itself. Oak tannins combine to create a fascinating mesh of dry, sweet, and wine-like character. One of our favorites!
Beer: Reviews & Ratings
Sort by:  Recent | High | Low | Top Raters | Read the Alström Bros Beer Reviews and Beer Ratings of Melange A Trois - Reserve Series Aged In French Oak Chardonnay Barrels Alström Bros
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Reviews: 90 | Hads: 321
Photo of AtrumAnimus
3.59/5  rDev -14.3%
look: 4.5 | smell: 4.75 | taste: 2.75 | feel: 4.25 | overall: 3.25

THe pour is the color of 24 carat gold with a think, lively and long lived head that is tinged gold as well. The head is taking forever to settle. The head eventually thins down to a nice, shaving cream rich level of foam. The lacing is more of a blanketing, too thick to stick.

The nose is crisp Chardonnay with oak notes that have a hint of what i suspect is Challenger Hops. There are also notes of grass, pine, wet earth and Floral notes hinting at a lot of fructose.

The taste is dominated by the chardonnay flavor of the cask aging with some bitter hops in the finish. I would rate the taste as Interesting, The combination of the Belgian style ale, strong hops and Chardonnay results is flavor that reminds me of a sour. SInce i do not like sours, I am not digging the flavor.

The moutfeel is very rich and one of the better parts of the beer that belies the belgian style it is based on.

Overall it is a fascinating experiment, but not a very rin kable beer. KEep trying Nebraska Brewing. I think you are on to something. However, I believe you can do better.

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Photo of blindtiger24
4.09/5  rDev -2.4%
look: 4 | smell: 4.25 | taste: 4 | feel: 4.25 | overall: 4

Wine, apple juice, belgian yeast, esters on the nose. Foamy pure white head. Golden, hazy, some carbonation. Wheat, strong belgian yeast and spice flavors, and white wine. On the juicy side initially, but some dryness from the yeast and spice. Creamy. Warm on the throat.

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

Belgian yeast. Tastes a lot like wine. Oak and tannins. Grapes. White wine. Champagne yeast. Green apples.

Very much like a wine or champagne. Solid offering.

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Photo of pat61
4.5/5  rDev +7.4%
look: 4.5 | smell: 4.5 | taste: 4.5 | feel: 4.5 | overall: 4.5

L: Hazy copper gold with a 2” sticky foam collar. S: Fruity, musty, wine notes. T: Light malt, slightly sweet, light funk, light apricot to peach, Belgian yeast. F: Medium body with very fine, soft carbonation. O: the carbonation and body make this beer stand out.

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Photo of Sintech
5/5  rDev +19.3%
look: 5 | smell: 5 | taste: 5 | feel: 5 | overall: 5

Out of 750ml bottle.

Appearance - Golden yellow hue.

Smell - Oak, Wine and Belgian yeast.

Taste - Wine, grapes, Belgian yeast, light fruits, champagne... WOW!

Mouthfeel - Medium attenuation. Medium carbonation.

Overall - One of the best Belgians out there. Definitely the best Belgian Strong from Nebraska!!

Grade (A+)

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Photo of argock
4.1/5  rDev -2.1%
look: 4 | smell: 4 | taste: 4.25 | feel: 4 | overall: 4

Poured from a 750 ml brown bottle into a clear glass tulip. 2014 vintage. Purchased at Wine Warehouse (Charlottesville, VA).

A: Clear lemon-yellow with 1/2 finger of white head, tightly bubbled with average retention and a delicate stripe of lacing.

S: Exteremly vinous nose with a lot of green grape along with apple, pear and light vanilla notes with herbal hopping

T: Flavor is beery but with a lot of Chardonnay character, light fruits like apple, pear, apricot; hop flavor is low and mainly floral and herbal, with low-medium bitterness. Vanilla and barrel-oak character is strongest at first and seems to wane with warming. Reminds me of a Bruery White Oak light with heavy grapes.

M: Smooth and very drinkable with low carbonation and medium body. ABV of 11.3% is barely noticeable.

O: Melange A Trois is a really unique beer that I am glad I had a chance to try. It is very flavorful and aromatic. It's not really up my alley so to speak, but those who like an interesting barrel character will like this beer a lot. Spendy but worth it for a chance to check it out.

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Photo of clayrock81
4.09/5  rDev -2.4%

Poured a semi-clear golden body with one finger head and has a spicy, oaky, tart (wine-like with a white grape feel) aroma.
There is a light yeast presence that gives off a touch of orange citric one finds in a Belgian ale, but this beer has more of a sour taste/feel to it.
Touches of tropical fruit sweetness add balance but are in background to a not overpowering tart/sour beer that has a good amount of wood in it.
Finishes slightly sour but there is not enough sour/tart/acidic taste to this beer to where it becomes too hard to drink, instead always just leaving you wanting more and this comes partly from the fact that the sweet aspects are just enough to prevent a puckering beer.
Sharpness in the beer thanks to lively carbonation perk up the backend and I must say the ABV is hidden.

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Photo of Sludgeman
4.38/5  rDev +4.5%
look: 4.5 | smell: 4 | taste: 4.5 | feel: 4.5 | overall: 4.5

Purchased in Wichita. Poured into a very small white wine glass.

A – Pours a cloudy orange yellowish with a white frothy, mousey two-finger head. Heavy lacing. 4.5

S – Big chardonnay aroma, citrus, pear, oak. So all wine-line qualities but then moderated with some malty funk. (fruity, but not too spicy). 4

T – Lemon, malty, with some citrus hoppiness, a bit of spicy heat. Maybe a bit too much white wine, but still a fairly balanced beer. 4.5

MF – medium body, dry finish, a bit creamy, at 10% ABV a bit of lasting alcohol heat in the finish. 4.5

O – This really works. A complex beer that crosses many stylistic lines. An Orval/chardonnay cocktail with a squeeze of lemon. Some champagne-like and saison-like qualities. Bottle conditioned ++ 4.5

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Photo of patre_tim
4.42/5  rDev +5.5%
look: 4.25 | smell: 4 | taste: 4.75 | feel: 4 | overall: 4.5

A: Soft gold with a light haze and a moderate amount of fine bubbles. Huge 5 finger off white head looks like melting vanilla ice cream.

S: Belgian yeasts, particularly like those found in many saisons. Light grassiness, lemony, heavy oaken barrel quality. A light sweetness and a light funkiness all at the same time. The funkiness is like farmyard, frankly, like a manure pile.

T: Wow. Soft and balanced with the light lemon juice, Belgian yeast qualities, the oak barrel blending softly together. A little funky farmyard and grassiness for sure, then a slight metallic note on the first sip but never again. Black pepper near the end. Light sweetness as well. Really hides the alcohol but it burns for sure in the throat.

M: Medium body with a solid substance to it, medium low carbonation. Dry finish, much like a white wine.

O: Excellent brew. This one is up there in my top 20 beers of all time. Very delicate and balanced, well thought up, well put together brew. Got this in Kansas City Aug 9th, 2014 and drank here the same day.

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Photo of laituegonflable
3.6/5  rDev -14.1%
look: 3.5 | smell: 3.5 | taste: 3.75 | feel: 3 | overall: 3.75

Pours an orange-tweaked gold, trickle of bead. Head is whispy, not much left but comes back decently with a swill. Quite nice.

Smells quite Belgian. Touch of honey, with organic lawn notes, some rubber and slight acidity. Bit bitter/phenolic, but refreshing enough.

Taste is far more on the bitter side, with a big champagney tartness upfront, then a big spice hit midway - notes of pepper and clove, then phenolic rubber and aged riesling on the back. Really quite vinous, and enjoyably complex.

Quite fizzy, a little stripping back. Too lively, like a hooker on crack.

Decent notes, nice complexity. A good wine-beer bridger.

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Photo of StaveHooks
3.85/5  rDev -8.1%
look: 4 | smell: 4 | taste: 3.75 | feel: 4 | overall: 3.75

Thanks to Yoshi Optimator for this one!
22oz bottle served in a Prairie Teku

A - pours a cloudy golden body with a small white cap that retains very well.

S - Chardonnay right out of the gate, white grapes, pears, greens, white oak, citrus, acidic.

T - Bitter Chardonnay, mustard greens, peppery alcohol, tangy pale malts, Belgian yeast, under ripened bananas, white grapes, pears, lactic buttery flavor, under ripened peaches and pears. Light buttery oak on the finish.

M - medium body, very creamy carbonation, very nice.

This has taken on a lot of Chardonnay characteristics. Well rounded unripened fruit character with a oaky and buttery lactic acid character. Enjoyed this one.

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Photo of stephens101
4.54/5  rDev +8.4%
look: 4.5 | smell: 4.25 | taste: 4.75 | feel: 4.5 | overall: 4.5

This bright, yellow-gold brew is topped with a bountiful white head.

Piquant light, fruity notes float between a background of spice, grain, yeast and faint alcohol.

The taste is complex and redolent of ripened light fruits (pear, green apple, orange, lemon), a dose of spice, faint oak, and grain.

Well carbonated, medium-bodied and finishes dry with a noticeable chardonnay heat that quickly resigns itself to more lingering notes of fruit and a hint of diacetyl.

One of the most flavorful beers I've had in a while. And one that makes me want to go to Nebraska, a thought that has never really crossed my mind until now.

Road trip!

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

this is a huge beer, certainly all of the 10 percent abv its listed at, and can feel like a whole lot more in high doses. off blonde, more peach colored beer, with a ton of visible carbonation and just a bit of yeast floating about. tall white head slowly recedes. it smells like belgian yeast all the way, mildy spicy, extremely grassy, and with the acidity of the wine from the barrels its aged in. complex for sure, with notes of peppercorns and yellow corn on the front end, tough to nail down grain bill because of these unique flavors. then the yeast adds an orchard fruit element, maybe green pear, and a lot of carbonation keeps it light for how enormous it really is. a lot of beer in this bottle, with a fair bit of body too. this reminds me of something from ommegang or unibroue, a very authentic but also very creative take on belgian beer. some residual sugar, very fruity, in the finish, and one supremely interesting beer. everything ive had from nebraska brewing has been top notch, i had no idea such cool beer was coming out of there before these ones. close to 20 bucks a bottle in cost for this reserve series stuff, but its darn close to being worth it. these are one of a kind ales here.

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Photo of LiquidAmber
4.46/5  rDev +6.4%
look: 4.5 | smell: 4 | taste: 4.75 | feel: 4.25 | overall: 4.5

Poured into a Gouyasse tulip glass. Pours a hazy, medium golden amber with a beautiful three finger fine white head with great retention and lacing. Pleasant aroma of white wine, Belgian yeast and faint oak. Flavor is Belgian yeast, light grape, apple and pear juice; oak influence of vanilla and butter, slight tartness, Belgian and earthy spicing, absolutely delicious. Medium bodied with great creaminess. This is one of the best barrel aged Belgian ales I've had and possibly the only wine barrel aged ale that I totally loved. I'm a big fan of whiskey barrel aged ales, but wine barrel ales are often too tart and vinous for my taste. The Belgian ale base of Melange A Trois completely supported the flavors of the vinous oak, and incorporated them excellently. A totally enjoyable ale. This is the first time I've seriously contemplated moving to Nebraska. A fine production.

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Photo of lacqueredmouse
4.28/5  rDev +2.1%
look: 4.25 | smell: 4.25 | taste: 4.25 | feel: 4.5 | overall: 4.25

750ml brown bottle purchased from Belmont Station in Portland, OR. Brought back to Sydney and shared with Sam and Rich. At the time of drinking it was about 18 months on from when I bought it.

Pours a slightly hazed, but brilliantly golden colour, with a firm, solid head of pure white that stays slick and pleasant across the top of the glass. Carbonation is a little loose, detaching itself in erratic waves when the glass is tilted. Lacing forms languid strokes down the side of the glass. Overall, it looks very good.

Nose is great: bright, tight tartness with supple undertones of chardonnay and oak. Slight carbonic funk comes through, and there's a cleanness to the malt character: again suggesting deep white wine.

Taste is very clean and smooth. Moderated tartness permeates from front to the back, and there's never a spike of it meaning it meanders and hides amongst the other notes that come and go. There's a peach/stonefruit character on the front that is bright and pleasant, while on the back the oak is in fine fettle, giving a broad smooth finish. Some Belgian phenolics punctuate the very end, leaving a slight medicinal note. It's very good.

Feel is pretty smooth, but given a bit of life by the phenolics on the back and the slight acidity. Alcohol heat is nowhere to be found.

Overall, this is really cracking stuff. It's very complex, but blended into a delicate smoothness that belies its 10% ABV. This is a really exceptional beer.

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Photo of TheSevenDuffs
4.4/5  rDev +5%
look: 4.75 | smell: 4 | taste: 4.5 | feel: 4.5 | overall: 4.5

Bottle to tulip.

A - Opaque cloudy bright orange colour with two fingers of bright white head.

S - Tartness up front with a big oak character present. Some lemon, Belgian yeast, spice and fruit esters are present as well.

T - Belgian yeast, toasted oak and a nice spice profile are dominant. A bready sweetness throughout with lighter apple and grape notes.

M - Medium body. Dry. Light carbonation.

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Photo of UCLABrewN84
4.18/5  rDev -0.2%
look: 3.5 | smell: 4.25 | taste: 4.25 | feel: 4 | overall: 4.25

Bottle pour at the bottle share held at Chloe's inside Golden Road Brewing in Los Angeles, CA.

Pours a hazy yellow with a foamy khaki head that settles to a partial film on top of the beer. Small streaks of lace form around the glass on the drink down. Smell is slightly sour and tart with malt, grain, earth, wine, wood, and alcohol aromas. Taste is much the same with wine and earthy wood flavors on the finish. There is a mild amount of woody bitterness on the palate with each sip. This beer has a good level of carbonation with a crisp and prickly mouthfeel. Overall, this is a very good beer with a nice wine barrel aged presence all around.

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Photo of flagmantho
4.08/5  rDev -2.6%
look: 4 | smell: 4 | taste: 4 | feel: 4.25 | overall: 4.25

Poured from 750mL bottle into a tulip. Bottle is dated 2010.

Appearance: medium golden hue with a very light haze and a strong effervescence. Head is two fingers of fizzy ivory foam. Attractive!

Smell: sweet, malty, grassy aroma with just a tiny hint of farmhouse funk. There's a hint of pear in there as well, along with a hint of chalkiness which I like. Great complexity, but with so much going on it lacks a little balance. Still quite nice.

Taste: very sweet right up front with a light hint of tartness and more of that funk. Grassiness is present and the alcohol, while not hot in character, is definitely felt in the throat as I swallow this brew. Mostly I like it, although again, it could have better balance between strength and character.

Mouthfeel: medium-light body with a great big carbonation and a massive, if somewhat ephemeral, mouthfeel. I like it a lot, although with a little more body this thing could be Brobdingnagian.

Overall: despite its imperfections, this beer just rubs me the right way. Good stuff!

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Photo of katan
4.39/5  rDev +4.8%
look: 4.5 | smell: 4.25 | taste: 4.5 | feel: 4 | overall: 4.5

750 ml into a goblet

A - Pours bright golden, effervescent. Lots of head, pearly white. Frothy, well retained.

S - Spicy at first, and then some citrus and fruity notes come in the background. Perhaps some apple must sneaking its way in.

T - Starts off smooth and sweet, light belgian malts. Mid-stream brings in the fruitiness, somewhat apple like. The grape from chardonay starts to appear, adding some more sweetness. Finishes lightly sweet, more of those fruity notes. THe aftertaste is more complex, some hints of those belgian yeast phenols and spices.

M - Full bodied, lighter on the carbonation end. Alcohol warmth is very present. Sticky in the finish.

O/D - A very well done beer. The chardonnay comes through just enough to add complexity. Its a big beer, very full flavored and full of alcohol.

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Photo of facundoCNB
3.83/5  rDev -8.6%
look: 4.5 | smell: 4 | taste: 3.5 | feel: 4 | overall: 4

A beautiful looking blonde ale. Clean golden/yellow, visible flow of high arbonation down the center of the glass, fluffy white head topping off at an even two fingers.
Smells of sweet malt, fruity: apples, pears, citrus bitterness of lemongrass, nice farmhouse smell.
The taste is harsh up front.. Like you're dipping your tongue into a glass of gasoline.. Yikes! As the beer warms up it develops a nice character. Definitely getting a white wine feel to this, though I don't drink enough wine to know the difference in styles. A sour/tart/bitter overall feel. A sweet malt backbone is present in the aftertaste. It's hard for me to like wine barrel aged beers since, like I already said, I don't drink/like wine. This is definitely a really good beer though. Pretty darn complex for a blonde ale, and well the abv doesn't do it any harm! A medium body, highly carbonated beer.. Very booze heavy and you definitely feel your chest warming up throughout the glass.

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Photo of Tone
4.03/5  rDev -3.8%
look: 4.5 | smell: 4 | taste: 4 | feel: 4 | overall: 4

Pours a clear, gold color. 3/4 inch head of a white color. There is some suspended sediment. Great retention and great lacing. Smells of alcohol, wine, slight dry hop, hint of floral, and slight floral malt. Fits the style of a Belgian Strong Pale Ale. Mouth feel is sharp and crisp, with an average carbonation level. The dryness level is not too strong, especially for a 'wine' beer. Tastes of sweet malt, slight floral, slight wine, hint of pale malt, alcohol, and a hint of citrus. Overall, great appearance, good aroma, body, and blend.

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Photo of John_M
4.47/5  rDev +6.7%
look: 4 | smell: 4.5 | taste: 4.5 | feel: 4.5 | overall: 4.5

On tap at TJ's, the day before their anniversary event.

The beer pours a bright, fairly dark gold color with good head retention and lacing. The nose is quite complex in this beer, as I pick up considerable citrus, light clove, honey, peach and of course, lots of vanilla and chardonnay. There's a light hint of sour as well, which I associate with the wine barrel aging. The flavor profile replicates the nose in this impressive beer, though it's nice that there's sufficient bitterness on the finish to buoy the tropical fruit and modest sweetness. The light sour wine flavor blends well with the bitterness, and completely dries this beer out on the finish. Mouthfeel is medium bodied to full, with a long, lightly bitter, spicy finish. Alcohol is well integrated into the flavor profile... there's really no sense of the 10% abv. on the palate.

An impressive beer, no doubt... I just wish it wasn't so expensive (as all Nebraska brewing beers seem to be... a tulip glass of this was $12 at TJ's!). In any event, I'm glad I had a chance to try this. (though I was more than a bit annoyed when I saw bombers of this beer at my local MofC, priced at a much more reasonable $13.99 a pop.)

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Photo of ehammond1
4.08/5  rDev -2.6%
look: 4.5 | smell: 4 | taste: 4 | feel: 4.5 | overall: 4

Bottle (2011)

Churchill's Pub & Grille
San Marcos, CA

Thanks for sharing this one with me, VaTechHopHead!

Clear golden with a large, creamy, persistent bone-white head that lasts and lasts, eventually leaving thick ribbons and lots of stick down the glass.

Chardonnay grapes and oak dominate the aroma, along with a touch of citrus, and bready sweetness.

The grape and oak barrel character is dominant in flavor as well, along with a hint of an acidic tartness, mild yeast, and sweet bread.

Medium bodied with high carbonation.

Very enjoyable and quite interesting.

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

Going into this one with high hops. For a fairly new (to bottling at least) brewery to charge $25-30 a bottle...we shall see. They better be Bruery-status in oder to pull this off! Pours a hazy, golden color with a large white head that goes down rather quickly. Scent is spicy at first...spicy Belgian yeast with some pronounced green apples and pear aromas. A little bit of french oak and chardonnay. A bit of lemon as well. Nice nose to this beer. Taste is just as nice, although...I was hoping this beer would be a little sour. Taste is mildly tart green apples and white grapes. A ton of crisp, Belgian yeast flavor...spicy as well. More spicy than I was anticipating, with a good amount of pepper and lemon zest. Some definite french oak and chardonnay flavors, but I would have liked to see more Chardonnay...something along the lines of a less sour Temptation. Finishes with some mild hop flavors and dry Belgian yeast. Mouthfeel is somewhat dry and medium bodied. There is a slight alcohol burn with the 10%ABV, but less than I was expecting. Overall, this is a very solid beer and I look forward to trying more that this brewery has to offer. Unfortunately, I may not take the risk if the price tags are this high. It took me 3 trips to Los Angeles and seeing this beer on shelves before I actually pulled the trigger.

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Photo of Darkmagus82
4.12/5  rDev -1.7%
look: 4 | smell: 4.5 | taste: 4 | feel: 4 | overall: 4

Served on tap in a 10 oz chalice glass

Appearance – Served a hazy golden orange colored brew with a one finger white head. The head has a good level of retention giving way to a nice level of lacing.

Smell – The smell was big of lighter fruits and yeast ; with the fruit being of a sweeter orange, grape and pear nature. Mixed with these aromas were some lighter bready notes and an oaky and spicy aroma. Overall the aroma was quite pleasant.

Taste – The taste starts out with a good biscuit base with a good presence of a grapey wine like flavor. As the taste advances yeasty flavors come to the tongue with flavors of citrus and pear coming to the tongue, with the grape all the while grow stronger in nature. This sweeter fruit flavors reach a maximum more toward the middle of the taste, with it at the end declining a bit. The main reason for its decline was that other flavors of a spicy and oaky flavor start to come to the tongue. In the end a light boozy taste enter the profile and with the fruit, biscuit, oak and yeast flavors create a very pleasing taste to linger on the tongue.

Mouthfeel – The body of the beer was on the crisper side with it being moderately creamy, but yet with a prickly carbonation level. Very appropriate for a style and nice for the fruit flavors of the brew; overall giving a dry and crisp mouthfeel.

Overall – A very nice Belgian style ale. It has fantastic transitions in the taste, with all being very smooth and pleasing. While it is quite tasty, for the price it is a bit over-rated. If you can get it at an affordable price (under 25 dollars for a bottle) then I say go for it, but if not then your much better off going for something more time true and affordable in a Belgian.

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Melange A Trois - Reserve Series Aged In French Oak Chardonnay Barrels from Nebraska Brewing Company
92 out of 100 based on 90 ratings.