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Phoenix Kriek - Selin's Grove Brewing Company

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Phoenix KriekPhoenix Kriek

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BA SCORE
95
world-class

65 Reviews
THE BROS
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Reviews: 65
Hads: 127
rAvg: 4.34
pDev: 6.22%
Wants: 112
Gots: 3 | FT: 0
Brewed by:
Selin's Grove Brewing Company visit their website
Pennsylvania, United States

Style | ABV
Fruit / Vegetable Beer |  6.50% ABV

Availability: Rotating

Notes & Commercial Description:
Beer added by: Sammy on 05-06-2007

No notes at this time.
Beer: Reviews & Ratings
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Reviews: 65 | Hads: 127
Photo of russwbeck
3.48/5  rDev -19.8%
look: 4 | smell: 3.5 | taste: 4 | feel: 2 | overall: 3

Appearance 4
It is a bit difficult to discern the appearance of Phoenix Kriek in this dark pub. It seems to be red with a finger of sticky pink head. The head does coat the side of my glass wonderfully.

Aroma 3.5
The aroma is very sweet and wheaty, wine-like. I get the cherries in the sweetness, but neither the fruit not the tartness take the aroma over. As the beer warmed, the cherries came out in a big way, suggesting it was a bit too cold right off the tap.

Taste 4
This is an assault of tart cherries. It definitely hasn't soured, instead it takes its main taste straight from the cherries themselves. It's like a cherry wheat beer on absolute steroids. Don't confuse this with the cherry sodas that sometimes invade this style, however it also isn't tart like the best Belgian krieks. Likening it to cherry pie isn't too far off, actually.

Mouthfeel/Drinkability 2
The Phoenix has a medium body with a lower than average carbonation. The sweetness lingers and keeps your palate, leaving it interested enough to continuously take sips. The syrup-like tendencies of the body, combined with the sweetness, really started to wear on me.

Value 3
This set me back $6.50 for a pint, but was only $27 for a 64oz growler fill. Not a bad price point at all, and the growler should fit the bill at an upcoming barbecue nicely.

Overall 3
I wanted this to blow me away, and it didn't. It's good, probably the best Kriek made in PA, but it can't hold a candle to some if the better krieks on the market. Either way, I'm glad I finally got the chance to try this elusive beer! (1,575 characters)

Photo of craytonic
3.73/5  rDev -14.1%
look: 4 | smell: 3.5 | taste: 4 | feel: 3.5 | overall: 3.5

Not sure why the word kriek is in the name of this beerl:

Pour is an opaque royal purple-amber. Enormous head that conquers the glass.

Smell: Sweet, sweet cherries and apple butter. Not funky or sour. Also some sort of off aroma.

Taste: Again, the sweet cherries dominate. A bit syrupy. Like cherry pie made with canned cherries.

Mouthfeel: O bit over carbonated, similar to drinking soda pop. (397 characters)

Photo of Phyl21ca
3.75/5  rDev -13.6%
look: 4 | smell: 4 | taste: 3.5 | feel: 3.5 | overall: 4

Bottle courtesy of Miver (handbottle): Poured a deep clear reddish color ale with some limited carbonation (due to the handbottling). Aroma of sour cheery with some light cough syrup notes. Taste is a nice mix between some sour cherry with some notes of oak and tart and some limited sweetness. I was slightly disappointed by the cough syrup notes that I could pick-up through the tasting. Nice body with no apparent alcohol. Well done but I could do without the cough syrup. Makes me want to take a road trip and taste the beer on site. (537 characters)

Photo of 4DAloveofSTOUT
3.83/5  rDev -11.8%
look: 4 | smell: 4 | taste: 3.75 | feel: 3.75 | overall: 3.75

This beer is an extremely sweet version of a kriek. No tartness or sourness. Loaded with sweet cherry flavor that does not taste fake, it tastes very authentic. Not much else complexity or other flavors, just a huge cherry fruit beer, but it does that pretty well. A medium bodied beer with low carbonation levels. It is a sipper, because it is pretty sweet. Still enjoyable and glad that I finally got to try this beer. It has been on my wants list for at least 3 years or longer. This is my first beer from Selin's Grove and look forward to visiting them this summer! (569 characters)

Photo of Gueuzedude
3.9/5  rDev -10.1%
look: 4 | smell: 4 | taste: 4 | feel: 4 | overall: 3.5

Named Phoenix Kriek

Growler sampled approximately 1 week after being filled, May 2007
Pours with an opaque, quite hazy, dark purple, yet still cherry red color. The pour from the growler easily summons forth a three-finger thick, pinkish, light tan colored head. The aroma is quite cherry driven; chewy-cherry skin notes lend a fullness to the dominant sweet cherry candy-like nose. The aroma really reminds me of the cherry character in a well made batch of cherry ice-cream. My guess is that these are not sour cherries, but they still smell fairly enticing in this beer.

The beer is lightly sweet up front, but thankfully not sticky or syrup-like in texture or sweetness. There is a nice level of tartness here, though not to the level of a Lambic. The chewy cherry skin character from the aroma is in the flavor, though not quite as prominent as in the nose. There seems to be a hint of plastic phenolics character that is lying just underneath the surface here; it is just barely noticeable though. This beer is very cherry focused, somewhat similar (perhaps even inspired by) to New Glarus Belgian Red, though I don’t think it is quite as sweet, nor as tannic & chewy as that beer. The beer is fairly well carbonated, which adds a touch of zesty prickly character. This helps to lighten the thick chewy character a bit. I do like that this beer is fairly thick & rich; it makes it sort of like a dessert, but not necessarily a sweet one.

This is quite a nice beer, I would love to see this fermented more towards the Lambic side of the spectrum, but that would ruin the hearty desert quality of this beer. (1,622 characters)

Photo of emerge077
4.02/5  rDev -7.4%
look: 3.5 | smell: 4 | taste: 4 | feel: 3.5 | overall: 4.5

Thanks Alex for busting out this growler over the weekend.
Review transcribed from notes.

Deep reddish brown, hazed with suspended granular yeast sediment. The head fizzled off fast, leaving a seemingly still, glassy surface. Looked and smelled like cherry juice. The empty glass had a little funk to it, but the beer itself was straight up cherry juice.

Flavor is all cherry too, not especially complex and a bit one dimensional. A mild tartness, maybe 2.5/10 on the sour scale. Dry in the end, preceded by some natural sweetness from the fruit. Slight hint of alcohol at room temperature, but no evidence when cold. Feel was a bit thin and juice-like, needed more carbonation. Pretty easy to drink, and overall refreshing. More of a cherry beer than Kriek. (762 characters)

Photo of ktrillionaire
4.02/5  rDev -7.4%
look: 4 | smell: 4.5 | taste: 3.5 | feel: 4 | overall: 4.5

Big thanks to Thorpe429 for the hook-up.

The comparison to New Glarus' Belgian Red is inevitable, so here it goes: they look, smell, taste, feel and drink very similar; they are not, however, exactly the same, nor are they clones of one another, they are brethren.

A - It pours a deep crimson with an off-white head that recedes into a wispy cap.

S - Super-delicious desert aromatics arise; I am getting vivid impressions of sugar-glazed cherry-filled jelly donuts. I can think of nothing else.

T - The taste is again of cherry-filled jelly donuts, but it is not quite as compelling or vivid as the aroma. There is a very high sweetness, and perhaps not enough balancing tartness in the dynamic.

M - Comparing this brew to NGBR, I prefer this in mouthfeel; it is less sticky and yet a bit more viscous.

D - Good stuff, though I couldn't drink 64oz of it in one sitting, so I started blending it with a growler of Boy King as well as various CCB beers (Zhukov!). It is awesome blending beer. (998 characters)

Photo of TCgoalie
4.03/5  rDev -7.1%
look: 4 | smell: 3.5 | taste: 4 | feel: 4.5 | overall: 4.5

Nice ruby red appearance with an off white head...excellent lacing. Sour cherry taste with a light spice. Mild drying in the mouth with a medium feel. This is very drinkable for the style. Very tasty but I must say that I prefer WI Belgian Red if I had to choose based on the style. (282 characters)

Photo of ffejherb
4.03/5  rDev -7.1%
look: 4 | smell: 3.5 | taste: 4.5 | feel: 3.5 | overall: 4

On tap at SGB on 4/6/08.

A - Violet/plum-colored body with thin pink ring around the rim of the glass. Minimal carbonation.

S - Tart black cherry pie filling and berry fruit with a hint of vanilla and honey. Pomegranate? Touch of alcohol as the liquid warmed.

T - Black cherry sweetness and tartness with some vanilla notes and honey sweetness. Finish is quite bitter and akin to pomegranate fruit. Flavor is sweet, tart and bitter all in one.

M - Medium body with a fairly prickly, bubbly personality. Sticky mouthfeel with a tartness that makes the mouth pucker up. Pretty long-lasting bitterness with some sweetness on the tongue.

D - Finally got to try this much talked-about brew from SGB. More complex than I had anticipated. While I prefer the Razzmerry, this is also quite nice. (794 characters)

Photo of JohannBock
4.05/5  rDev -6.7%
look: 4 | smell: 4 | taste: 4 | feel: 3.5 | overall: 4.5

Had this to start off a wonderful night at the Selin's Grove Brewery. Served in a 14 oz goblet.

A: Deep cherry red. No head at all when it got to me maybe just a little bit around the edges of the glass.

S: Smells strongly of fresh cherries, almost as if they had just been crushed in front of me.

T: If you didn't guess that it tasted strongly of cherries then you haven't been reading the first part of this. Cherries, cherries, cherries. It almost doesn't taste like a beer until the very end when you get just a little bit of bite on the back of your tongue. You could have told me that it was cherry juice though and I wouldn't have been surprised. Different than anything I've had before but very tasty for sure.

M: A bit syrupy. Big in your mouth though but I wasn't a huge fan of the syrup feel it had.

O: This was my first attempt at a Kriek and I was very happy. Not something that I would drink all of the time but I would definitely go back to it if I were in the mood. Highly recommended. (1,006 characters)

Photo of Gtreid
4.05/5  rDev -6.7%
look: 4.5 | smell: 4.5 | taste: 4 | feel: 4 | overall: 3.5

Thanks to my buddy Dave for sharing this growler. Poured into my ccb tulip.

A: Pours a very dark almost blood red color. A nice finger of fluffy slightly pink head appears then fades to a thin rim. Leaves some sticky lace.

A: Sweet and tart cherries all the way with hints of raspberries, graham crackers, and strawberries. Really just like a can of cherry pie filling.

T: Cherry explosion in my mouth! Sweet syrupy cherry juice, with notes of citrus hops, raspberries, and sweet malts. The brew finishes tart and dry.

M: Medium body, good amount of carbonation.

D and overall impression: drinkability is a touch lower due to the overpowering sweetness, but I could have a couple of glasses. Overall this is a soild brew, and one I wouldn't mind having as a dessert beer. Skal. (784 characters)

Photo of BearsOnAcid
4.08/5  rDev -6%
look: 4.5 | smell: 4 | taste: 4 | feel: 4.5 | overall: 4

Growler shared by Ray.

Beer poured out with a fair amount of carbonation. It looked a bit like an actual kriek, minus the darker head on it. The smell reminds me of a cherry cinnamon apple pie with maybe even nutmeg. Taste seemed to follow through with the aroma with a brilliant tart black cherry flavor coming though.

I enjoyed this one a lot. It was never cloyingly sweet, even after a few glasses. It's actually refreshing and has a thin mouthfeel. I find this to be head and shoulders above Belgian Red and just a bit better than Raspberry Tart. (553 characters)

Photo of MDDMD
4.09/5  rDev -5.8%
look: 3.75 | smell: 4 | taste: 4.25 | feel: 4 | overall: 4

A-light to medium red color with a smallish off-white head and little lacing

S-light grain, light brown sugar, huge cherry nose with no significant tartness

T-big cherry flavor with mostly sweet and hint of sour cherry flavor, light grain and brown sugar in the background, like a fresh homemade cherry pie

F-medium body with light to moderate, carbonation, smooth

O-interesting beer, great cherry flavor, they call this a wild ale, but fruit beer seems to fit this better (476 characters)

Photo of JDV
4.1/5  rDev -5.5%
look: 4 | smell: 4 | taste: 4 | feel: 4 | overall: 4.5

handbottle shared courtesy of Briank. Thanks man!
Pours rich dark red but clearish. Smell is straight tart dark red cherry juice all the way. Taste is much the same with vibrant, juicy sour cherry flavor. No funk or anything getting in the way of the delicious fresh cherry taste. Good stuff, and sweet an sour balancing to keep from being cloying. Thanks again! (363 characters)

Photo of Sammy
4.13/5  rDev -4.8%
look: 4 | smell: 3.5 | taste: 4.5 | feel: 3.5 | overall: 4.5

The couple really nailed this one. Reddish with lace and a whisp of head. Perfect sour cherry taste, amazing, as good or better than a Belgian kriek. Real cherry with krieks. Medium plus mouhfeel, and a bit of above average carbonation which doesn't detract. Would like another glass in a month. Very organic tasting like real fruit was squeezed in just last night. (365 characters)

Photo of drabmuh
4.13/5  rDev -4.8%
look: 4.5 | smell: 4 | taste: 4 | feel: 4 | overall: 4.5

Poured from a growler into a pint glass. I was very excited to get this one. Carbonation is always a concern of mine when dealing with a growler, but not this time, carbonation of this beer is high high high. Beer is red in color and completely clear. The head is what and leaves a lot of lacing on the glass. Looks great.

Aroma is a little weak. The provider of the growler warned us that this one was weaker than the other one he had opened a month ago even though they were kept cold. I can detect some cherries in there though. Even diminished the aroma is good.

Beer has a medium to low body. Overall light tasting. Good cherry flavor, nice sourness overall to the beer. Some good citric qualities throughout. Drinkability is high (I could have taken down this entire growler myself) and mouthfeel is great. The carbonation helps to carry the sour notes throughout the palate. I would love to try this on draft sometime. (927 characters)

Photo of DefenCorps
4.18/5  rDev -3.7%
look: 4.5 | smell: 4 | taste: 4 | feel: 4.5 | overall: 4.5

orangesol sent me a growler of this. Thank you, Nate.

Pouring a dark reddish mahogany with nice reddish highlights. There's a dense, tan head with great retention and nice lacing. The nose has an outstanding fruit character. Rich, ripe tart cherries with a definite baking spice character (allspice or nutmeg?) . This is a wonderful expression of pure fruit.
The palate opens with a blend of sweetness and tartness, with a ton of fruit flavor. Ripe, tart cherries with a full berry palate. There's a definite cherry skin like chewy tannin character. Along with the tannins, there's a touch of allspice on the finish. Not as sweet as the New Glarus Belgian Red, this has a moderate sweetness without the intense puree character that the BR has. A touch sweet on the finish, this has some tartness as well. Medium-light in body with soft carbonation, I really like the mouthfeel. Excellent stuff, I can see drinking a ton of this. Thank you again, Nate! (952 characters)

Photo of AgentZero
4.2/5  rDev -3.2%
look: 4 | smell: 4 | taste: 4.5 | feel: 4 | overall: 4

Thanks to jrallen34 for hooking me up with this.

A - Pours a deep ruby red/maroon with a small head that left some spots on it. Head receded into a nice ring. Nice looking beer.

S - Deep cherry smell on this and a little bit of wood. Smells very sweet, almost like a dessert.

T - This is a very impressive tasting beer. Huge deep cherry flavor, I almost get notes of chocolate, as in chocolate covered cherries. It's quite a bit like New Glarus WBR. Not tart at all, very candy sweet.

M - Lighter side of medium bodied, very sticky. Goes down smoothly.

D - Pretty good, for something so sweet I was able to do a couple glasses out of the growler. Good stuff, great dessert beer, and a nice drinker regularly as well. (721 characters)

Photo of LilBeerDoctor
4.2/5  rDev -3.2%
look: 4 | smell: 4 | taste: 4.5 | feel: 4 | overall: 4

On tap at the brewpub. Pours a deep red/brown with a thick light pink head. Aroma is bready/yeasty with tart cherry. Flavor of tart cherry initially with cinnamon and pie crust followed by a sweet cherry finish. Nice and tart. Quite a good fruit beer (although personally I prefer the Selin's Grove Saison de Peche). (316 characters)

Photo of Jmoore50
4.22/5  rDev -2.8%
look: 4 | smell: 4.5 | taste: 4 | feel: 4 | overall: 4.5

I think when Selins Grove uses the word Kriek they meant the Dutch definition for a specific cherry, not necessarily the sour cherry lambic. This is not a sour Kriek, but is accurately described as a fruit beer. To really dumb it down, its like a sweet fermented cherry juice.

The appearance is a beautiful ruby red with a dark pink fluffy head. Not much clarity, but a beautiful color non the less.

The smell is of the sweetest cherries with a small hint of vinegar tartness. It has lots of sweetness in it that starts the salivating. Just a great tart cherry smell that reminds me of a cherry jam or jelly.

Thankfully the taste is not as overbearingly sweet as I imagined it to be. It has a great cherry jam flavor, no artificial flavors here at all. Not very complex, but for a fruit beer it is crafted beautifully. Towards the end of the growler I was getting some syrup and sugary notes, but nothing overbearing.

The beer has a great gravity and great carbonation with it. Overall a treat. A great dessert beer if there ever was one.

(1,050 characters)

Photo of SpeedwayJim
4.29/5  rDev -1.2%
look: 3 | smell: 4 | taste: 4.5 | feel: 4.5 | overall: 4.5

Thanks to Frank (Avalon68) for this one. Poured from a 64oz. growler into a Surly snifter. Shared with capra12 and schen9303. Reviewed from notes.

Phoenix kriek looks like your average fruit beer. Small, pastel colored pink head with little retention and a stunning red color. No lace. Nose is almost identical to New Glarus Belgian Red but with more fruit and less Luden's cough drops. Subtle but very enticing. Taste is exactly what I'd want from a fruit beer. Pure with some spicy notes. Cherry is super strong with some cinnamon in the middle and at the end. Nothing else. Spot on for the style. Feel is low to medium bodied and again, just like Belgian Red. Not as big a body but still smooth, oily, and filmy.

Definitely one of the top fruit beers I've had. I'd actually put this above the "fruit sister" offerings from New Glarus, which are really the benchmark of the style. A fantastic beer all around. (915 characters)

Photo of Phatz
4.3/5  rDev -0.9%
look: 4 | smell: 4 | taste: 4.5 | feel: 4 | overall: 4.5

Hand bottled and shared by weeare138.

In the line up of sours we had this Kriek was not very sour. It is fruity and a bit candy like. I like it though. It reminded me more of New Galaurs fruit beers that Hanssens Oude Kriek though it certainly falls in the middle.

Appearance: pour an attractive dark read color with pink edges that show through in the hue of the head as well.

Smell: Cherry candy fruity with a wood attribute and a touch of caramel.

Taste: I was getting more Jolly Rancher candy and apples, than harsh lactic sour notes. To me it is a bit on the sweet side but if I were Selin's Grove I would find that a safer route to go as well. There are other red fruits and berries and a and certainly a tart element though this is one my wife would drink next to her Lindemans.

Mouthfeel: Sugary. A bit too much so for my personal preference but it is certainly not bad. Smooth and full.

Drinkability: I believe for thew person who like there Lambic sweet, like my wife, this would be a drinkable beer. Personally I prefer them a bit more sour.

Hope this is helpful.
Cheers! (1,089 characters)

Photo of womencantsail
4.3/5  rDev -0.9%
look: 4 | smell: 4 | taste: 4.5 | feel: 4 | overall: 4.5

Thanks to a very generous BA in Pennsylvania for sending me growler.

A: The pour is a dark red color with some light haziness. The head is fluffy and off-white.

S: Tons of sweet and mildly tart pie cherries in the nose. A hint of chocolate, surprisingly, and a nice spiced character.

T: The flavor is so nearly like New Glarus Wisconsin Belgian Red, but not as cloying. Again, tons of dark cherries that have a nice sweet flavor with hints of tartness. A nice nutmeg and all-spice flavor that is different, but enjoyable.

M: The body is medium with perhaps a slight tendency toward syrup due to the low carbonation.

D: Overall, I really enjoyed this. Like I said, similar to the Wisconsin Belgian Red but easier to drink. (726 characters)

Photo of ClockworkOrange
4.3/5  rDev -0.9%
look: 4 | smell: 4 | taste: 4.5 | feel: 4 | overall: 4.5

Served on tap at the brewpub. Arrived in a tulip glass a beautiful deep purple/red color with about two fingers of pinkish tan, fluffy foam. Aromas of dark, sour cherries, baking spices, as well as some pleasant sweet and sour notes. Tastes of tart, sour cherries and a slight hint of pepper and cinnamon. The tartness gives way to a pleasant cherry sweetness that rushes over the tongue. Somewhat full in body as well as a little crisp and dry with a mild alcohol burn. A notch or two above medium in carbonation. This is a chewy beer, and rightfully so since SGBC does not filter any of their beers. A really excellent offering. (630 characters)

Photo of akorsak
4.32/5  rDev -0.5%
look: 4 | smell: 4.5 | taste: 4.5 | feel: 4 | overall: 4

A growler filled last Sunday, 19-Jun. Happy father's day indeed, seeing this on tap at the brewpub.

A: The ale looks like a glass of black cherry juice, dark with a distinct reddish hue. The darkness leaves the ale opaque. A half finger of white head rustled up on pour but quickly disappeared.

S: Cherries, cherries and more cherries. Sweet with a subtle natural variation, the ale sings. Very sweet but not cloying. An amazing nose, sweet and firm but all cherry and sugars.

T: Each sip is cherry pie, the sweet cherries and crusty bread. The cherries are the centerpiece, spicy with a few stray sour flavors. Biscuit provides the crusty side, paling against the cherries though. Spices, some cinnamon and brown sugar and vanilla, add to the festivities. Drying at times, the finish leaves juicy cherry remnants to marinate in my mouth.

M: The spicy base and cherries are nice. My only complaint is that the sweetness is very filling, making this growler a challenge. Don't get me wrong, I'm up for it. A treat and well worth the higher price tag. (1,053 characters)

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Phoenix Kriek from Selin's Grove Brewing Company
95 out of 100 based on 65 ratings.