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Melange No. 3 - The Bruery

Not Rated.
Melange No. 3Melange No. 3

Educational use only; do not reuse.

250 Reviews
no score

(Send Samples)
Reviews: 250
Hads: 1,765
Avg: 4.35
pDev: 9.43%
Wants: 847
Gots: 743 | FT: 84
Brewed by:
The Bruery
California, United States | website

Style | ABV
American Strong Ale | 15.50% ABV

Availability: Rotating

Notes & Commercial Description:
Beer added by: Floydster on 02-14-2009

A blend of Black Tuesday, anniversary ale, and White Oak Sap.
Beer: Reviews & Ratings
Sort by:  Recent | High | Low | Top Raters
Reviews: 250 | Hads: 1,765
Photo of garbercury
3.9/5  rDev -10.3%
look: 4 | smell: 4 | taste: 4 | feel: 4 | overall: 3.5

Shared with Reed415...Pre-Super Bowl beer. Figured might be better than trying to deal with it during the game...

A--Reddish black with not much lacing. What was there faded pretty quickly...

S--Booze, oak, the bourbon is really coming out in this guy. Fruity esters come out, mainly from the White Oak I would guess.

T--Bourbon, chocolate, more bourbon, this sucker is boozy. There is a sweetness that might be a little bit much, but complex.

M--Nice feel.

D--One pour into a snifter and I am feeling this sucker after a few ounces, strong as hell, and I am a big beer drinker. I am glad I was able to get a hold of a bottle of this, but would not seek it out again. Guess for the meantime, as close as I will get to the elusive Black Tuesday...

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Photo of sweemzander
4.37/5  rDev +0.5%
look: 4 | smell: 4.5 | taste: 4.5 | feel: 4.5 | overall: 4

750mL waxed top bottle poured into a snifter. A major thanks to the ever generous Adam for sharing!

(A)- Pours a thick black color that produced a good frothy tan head that dissipated quickly; surprising considering the ABV on this one.

(S)- A nice rich profile of cocoa, oak, molasses, raisin, licorice, and hints at orange peel or something.

(T)- Similar to the smell. A really nice chocolatey/molasses/licorice/toffee/ oaky bourbon notes.

(M)- A good carbonation level and balance. Rather smooth for the ABV level. Rich for sure, but not over the top either.

(D)- Definitely a strong, sipping beer great on a winters night. The blending definitely made this a bit more complex and possibly smoother.

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Photo of beerwolf77
3.48/5  rDev -20%
look: 4 | smell: 3.5 | taste: 3.5 | feel: 4 | overall: 3

Thanks to adam for sharing this one.

A: Dark brown nearing black. No head no lace. Some legs form with swirls.

S: Bourbon dipped chocolate, booze soaked dark fruit, sweet and rich.

T: Pretty much a mirror of the nose. Loads of dark chocolate and roasty malt. Booze soaked dark fruits and wet wood.

M: Thick and syrupy body. Modest carbonation.

D: Just another big boozy beer to check off my list of big boozy beers I never have to drink again.

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Photo of alcstradamus
4.47/5  rDev +2.8%
look: 4 | smell: 4.5 | taste: 4.5 | feel: 4.5 | overall: 4.5

Pours black with a small head

Aroma is boozy chocolate and a nice oakiness.

The flavor is a wonderful bourbon chocolate and oak. Just blends so well and is smooth despite the high abv.

The body is medium full and carbonation is high. Overall this is phenomenal, well worth the acclaim.

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Photo of BearsOnAcid
3.51/5  rDev -19.3%
look: 4.5 | smell: 3.5 | taste: 4 | feel: 4 | overall: 2

Dark maroon color. Smelled mostly like Black Tuesday. Sweet, syrupy, bourbon and heat from the alcohol. Some toasted coconut and vanillin.

Taste had figs, dates, glazed raisins all rolled into one with a splash of high gravity sweet wort. Tangy wheat flavor and chocolate dipped oranges. Raisins in the finish. Very hot and very sweet. I suppose BT could not hide the heat in Papier. The mouthfeel was thinner than I expected.

Interesting but hard to drink that much of.

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Photo of hopsbreath
3.19/5  rDev -26.7%
look: 3 | smell: 4 | taste: 3.5 | feel: 2.5 | overall: 2

Thanks to moosington for hooking me up with a bottle of this in a great extra laden package. Shared at ramnuts house with our host, Black13, TulipSnifter, Bird, Mini, and Growler on 1-15-11. Review from notes.

A: Murky dark brown, no head, no lacing, no legs.

S: Lots of -bal, sweet vanilla, honey mead, Goldshlager.

T: Cinnamon, sweet heat, what's that caramel vanilla candy? This has that going on.

M: Moderately carbonated, moderate viscosity, sticky finish.

D: Eh... Compared to some of the other -bal aged beers we had that night, this one was lacking. I loved BA Coton straight up as well as Black Tuesday. The blend of those two with White Oak sap just doesn't do it for me though.

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Photo of brentk56
4.27/5  rDev -1.8%
look: 4 | smell: 4.5 | taste: 4.25 | feel: 4 | overall: 4.25

Appearance: Burnt caramel color with a thin foam that quickly fades to a ringlet; while there is not much lacing, there are legs (not unexpected for 15.5%)

Smell: Very boozy, with bourbon, vanilla, caramel, honey and cinnamon elements

Taste: At the outset, the bourbon, rum-soaked raisin, prune, honey, pear, caramel, vanilla and cinnamon elements lay down the gauntlet and build in alcoholic intensity by mid-palate; after the swallow, the flavors meld together, with a mouth-puckering, oaky intensity in the finish

Mouthfeel: Full-bodied with low carbonation and considerable warmth in the gullet

Drinkability: Considerable complexity and a fascinating range of flavor; while not particularly drinkable I am very impressed

Thanks, ptykozoon, for the opportunity and to sj3324, for the opportunity to revisit

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Photo of FosterJM
4.3/5  rDev -1.1%
look: 4 | smell: 4 | taste: 4.5 | feel: 4 | overall: 4.5

177th review on BA
on tap at RS party

App- It was slightly lighter than the Choc rain only because of the pairing of the two beers. A nice dark beer with little head with no laces

Smell- For a big beer it smelled great as it should. Red fruits with some chocolate and of course the booziness. Nice smell

Taste- This was a close second to Choc rain being the highlight of the day for me. It has the taste of being just great. The red fruits came through with some soft flavor profiles. (Vanilla and others mostly)

Mouth- A very heavy beer with a low carbonation but at the same time was very creamy

Drink- I think at 17% its a bit dangerous in my hands. That whole bottle would stand a chance and I wouldn't be standing anymore.

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Photo of kbutler1
4/5  rDev -8%
look: 4 | smell: 4 | taste: 4 | feel: 4 | overall: 4

On tap at the Bruery Reserve Initiation party 2011. Pours a reddish hued mahagony dark brown murky color with a tan head. Oaky notes in the nose along with some roast, vanilla, with an odd mix of fruit notes. Not sure on the nose or not and if I like it. The taste to me is heavy on the Black Tuesday, either that of those flavors just dominate the whole thing. The blending works though and I am enjoying this. What I would say is that on a day like this, trying so many great beers, this one sort of gets lost in the mix and doesn't stand out for me. I'll have to try it again on its own and re-rate I think. Medium mouthfeel.

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Photo of thagr81us
4.62/5  rDev +6.2%
look: 4 | smell: 4.5 | taste: 5 | feel: 4 | overall: 4.5

Served from tap into a Bruery sampler imperial pint glass at the Reserve Society Party. Poured a deep dark brown with a minimal tan head. Maintained decent lacing throughout the glass. The aroma was comprised of sweet malt, chocolate, vanilla, and maple syrup. The flavor was of sweet malt, chocolate, vanilla, and cream. It had a heavy feel on the palate with low carbonation. Overall impression... Effing wow! This brew was just plain excellent in all aspects. The flavor was more toward the sweet side without being overly sweet. The 17% ABV was NOWHERE to be found... This one is a must try without any doubt and I'm definitely glad I got to try it...

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Photo of Arbitrator
3.72/5  rDev -14.5%
look: 4 | smell: 4.5 | taste: 3.5 | feel: 4 | overall: 3

Received bottles from Alen and Nick3. Thanks guys.

Re-review off a bottle I opened to share with some non-BAs. I wanted some perspective that didn't come from hype or rarity, so I was curious to see what they would think.

My impression was very similar to the first time I had this beer. It was boozier than I remembered, slightly harsh with a nail-polish feel that others also remarked on.

The aroma was outstanding. I loved the vivid bouquet of chocolate, grapes, toffee, vanilla, and molasses. The taste was a little less impressive; the finer points were harder to pick out, and the beer bludgeoned me with chocolate, brandy, and molasses for the most part. Tannins were noticeable and balancing in the finish. I found this sweet and rich. One bottle among 4 people was way too much. I'm very glad I got to try this, but I probably won't go out of my way for it again.


Original comments:

Shared by dbuckingham. Thanks, David.

A: Pours a reddish brown (puce?) with just a light film of foam on top of the brew. Not much of a collar; no lace. It's more of a leggy beer with some obvious sugars here. I will give it points on the legs. For a 17% beer I don't expect much carbonation.

S: This smells like Brandy Old Stock. I don't think anything in here was aged in brandy barrels, but it has that toffee, caramel, dark fruit (grapes, figs) aroma that I remember. Vanilla, oak, molasses. A substantial, thick aroma that promises a great dessert experience.

T: And the taste absolutely nails the promise of the nose. Again, the Brandy Old Stock comparison is warranted. Rum-soaked raisins, toffee, caramel, figs, vanilla, oak, molasses. I guess this has some Black Tuesday mixed in, but I can't really pick up any strong bourbon. I get some molasses, though. Overall, an incredibly sweet taste that drives home the Bruery's signature style. I couldn't have this in large quantities, but I appreciate the glass.

M: Medium-bodied; I expected it to be heftier considering the sugars and ABV. Low carbonation. It is quite smooth, creamy, with a moderate heat to it. I don't normally enjoy boozy beers, but I appreciate it when the heat is well-integrated; it works fairly well here.

D: Idiotic decision to release this in 750mLs. I'm not shy about saying it. That being said, I'd be willing to try finishing a bottle of this on my own.

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Photo of teamizm
4.47/5  rDev +2.8%
look: 4 | smell: 4.5 | taste: 4.5 | feel: 4.5 | overall: 4.5

Poured into a RRBC tulip.

A - maple syrup colors - nice, dark amber with a little head with no laces

S - cherries, figs, chocolate, bourbon, vanilla, and a little amaretto.

T - taste like it smells - just delicious. It's like a cherry bourbon vanilla candy.

M - low carbonation, very creamy

D - 17% but I could easily put this down. I really love this beer, its so complex and a perfect cigar beer or a cold day in front of the fireplace type of beer.

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Photo of portia99
4.32/5  rDev -0.7%
look: 4 | smell: 4.5 | taste: 4.5 | feel: 4 | overall: 4

750ml bottle courtesy of a great trade with barrydotcom. Big thanks for this Barry! Poured into a Bruery tulip.

A - Pours a very dark brown color, mostly opaque but when held to a light shows its color nicely. No real head, just a thick collar around the glass. No lacing. For a 17% beer, I'm not expecting much head retention.

S - A bit on the boozy, bourbon is prominant. A good amount of caramel, sherry, prunes, a bit of vanilla, some oak, a bit buttery too.

T - This is nice...very complex. Bourbon, vanilla, caramel, raisins, dates (maybe), a bit of astringency, oak, sugar. This is really good...

M - On the thick and full side. Carbonation is low...gives a good and creamy feel. This is quite syrupy and rich...

D - Definitely a slow sipper, but this is highly enjoyable. Glad I am sharing the bottle with several BA's. Really enjoying, but too much of this will really hurt in the morning.

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Photo of ShogoKawada
4.4/5  rDev +1.1%
look: 4 | smell: 4 | taste: 4.5 | feel: 5 | overall: 4.5

A *huge* thanks to drazzamatazz to busting this bad boy out. I owe ya one for this. ~8oz into taster glass.

A- Dark! go figure. W/ black tuesday in the mix, it's not really surprising. Some bubbles, but no head.

S- Dark cocoa some almond/vanilla notes come through. Faint coffee. The booze is there, too.

T- Boozy! big and brash. The black tuesday takes the center stage, but the other 2 beers help cut it a bit to where it's a bit more drinkable than BT on its own. Undefined fruity malts, a lot more caramel and toffee.

M- Heavy, lethargic, and opulent. Yes, this is a beer for kings. To be sipped on.

D- Moderately high given the ABV. Once we got to try it solo we started blending it... the consensus was Melange 3 makes everything taste better. Gotta give points for that. I love this beer.

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Photo of paco1029384756
4.24/5  rDev -2.5%
look: 3 | smell: 4 | taste: 4.5 | feel: 5 | overall: 4

Bottle thanks to OlieIPA.

Pours a turbid, diarrhea brown color with minuscule head and nearly no lacing.

Scent of rich perfume like alcohol and sugar up front, sweet caramel, candy, maple syrup, vanilla, oak, molasses some chocolate. A great scent, but the alcohol is still a bit too strong.

Taste of maple syrup, sugar, chocolate, vanilla, oak, caramel, tobacco, tart dark fruit, a hint of earth, and some alcohol. Finishes with cloying sugar and drying alcohol.

Mouthfeel is smooth, lightly sticky and heavy with the lightest touch of carbonation, wonderful.

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Photo of sisuspeed
4.47/5  rDev +2.8%
look: 4 | smell: 4.5 | taste: 4.5 | feel: 4.5 | overall: 4.5

Thanks to a generous BA for this one!

Pours a dark brown with a ruby red hue. Thin off-white film across the top. Light lacing. This beer has some decent legs to it as well.

Toffee, caramel and dark fruits rise up from the glass. Touch of alcohol heat. Figs and caramelized apples. Quite sweet. Lots of vanilla and a little bit of oakiness. Great nose.

Sweet cherries, figs and grapes dance across the tongue. Caramel with bready malt. Almost has some Trappist-like qualities to it. Vanilla and a touch of spice, possibly cinnamon. Bittersweet dark chocolate and some alcohol round out the finish. Good mixture of dark fruit, vanilla and spice.

Mouthfeel is smooth and creamy with a touch of spice. Carbonation is spot on for the style. Nice warming alcohol. Somewhat chewy, but not too thick.

This is surprisingly drinkable for the ABV. Definitely a sipper, but a quick one. The flavor, aroma and mouthfeel are all great. This is a finely crafted brew and one of the best stong ales I have ever had. A perfect brew to sip on next to the fire on a cold winter's night. I'm really excited to see how the other bottle ages. Nice work Patrick!

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Photo of TheJollyHop
4.52/5  rDev +3.9%
look: 4 | smell: 4.5 | taste: 4.5 | feel: 5 | overall: 4.5

Ours a deep & clear toffee brown with red hues; no head and wine-like legs.

Toasted sugar, cherries, large amount of alcohol, molasses, oak, vanilla, raisins, and some sugar again.

Viscous, rich caramel, supple chocolate middle, all bathed in alcohol. Cherries and vanilla do come to the show as well. Just a phenomenal mix of flavors and indeed complex. Velvety smooth with milk chocolate and cocoa as well. Ends malt forward but surprisingly balanced from a good deal of spiciness.

The mouthfeel on this beer definitely propels it to a word class American Strong Ale; remarkably drinkable given the potent ABV.

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Photo of domtronzero
4.84/5  rDev +11.3%
look: 4 | smell: 5 | taste: 5 | feel: 5 | overall: 4.5

On tap at The Bruery. From notes.

A - slightly murky dark ruby brown color. Low tan head with high retention. Lots of lacing.

S - boozy bourbon. Dark malts with a little toffee. Raisins and alcohol.

F/M - caramel and toffee and dark fruity raisins. Big alcohol flavor with a touch of bourbon. Vanilla and prunes. Low bitterness. Full bodied with decent carbonation. Nice lingering aftertaste of dark fruits and bourbon.

D - exceptionally good for such a huge beer. The clean alcohol and well-balanced flavors make this an easy drinker for being such a big bold beer.

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Photo of koopa
4.25/5  rDev -2.3%
look: 4 | smell: 4 | taste: 4.5 | feel: 4.5 | overall: 4

Bottle shared by beerloco at our 6 Great Brews mini-tasting last weekend.

Appearance: Pours crimson to mahogany with minimal kahki crown that quickly recedes into a thin ring. Little to know lace going on here.

Smell: Lots of big flavors here. Slightly solvent like alcohol, big caramel notes, some deep roast malt, hints of smoke, rum soaked raisins, and vanilla.

Taste: Same flavors as what were going on in the nose but I'm really impressed by how well they work together. Layers that compliment each other. Very well crafted.

Mouthfeel: Thick with decent carbonation.

Drinkability: Not bad considering how massive the flavors and the abv are.

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Photo of callmescraps
4/5  rDev -8%
look: 4 | smell: 4 | taste: 4 | feel: 4 | overall: 4

Random tasting. The best kind.

Appearance- A nice ruby, amber color. 1/4 inch of tan cap dissipates into a nice ring.

Smell- Woody. As in, plenty of wood. Ripe fruit, cherries, and a hint of vanilla. Some raisin.

Taste- Hint of roast. Acidity, a more vinuous character than preferred. Almost sour? Not really, but hinting at it. Cherry. Too much wheatwine for my taste. Definitely improves as it warms.

Mouth- A tad on the light side. I'd like some more umph.

Drinkability- Better than expected. Nice.

The bourbon comes through as it warms further. There is a weird sour cherry juice thing. Anyways, it's a pretty good beer, but I'm underwhelmed.

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Photo of craytonic
3.76/5  rDev -13.6%
look: 4.5 | smell: 3.5 | taste: 4 | feel: 3.5 | overall: 3.5

Appearance: nice dark pour with a touch of mahogany, good head, no lacing.

Smell: Booze hits you in the face immediately like a brick wall, lots of bourbon but also heavy alcohol. Lots of vanilla, oak, toffee, and molasses as well. Alcohol overload.

Smell: Burning booze up front, the smell was more bourbon but the taste is all alcohol. Incredibly rich, full of bourbon, fudge brownies, brown sugar, toffee, molasses, vanilla, and caramel. Very rich, but just too much alcohol.

Mouthfeel: could use a touch more carbonation, but otherwise very rich.

Drinkability: Incredibly rich, but the enormous booze factor makes more than a glass a chore.

Most of the scores took a hit as it is really too much booze, a bit too sweet, and a bit too flat. I think it would be better on tap.

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Photo of mothman
4.77/5  rDev +9.7%
look: 4.5 | smell: 5 | taste: 4.5 | feel: 5 | overall: 5

Poured into Old Guardian Glass.

Pours an off white head. Color is a murky caramel brown.

Aroma: Rich and malty. Bourbon, oak, vanilla, cherries, plums, raisins, and other fruits. Very sweet and warm. Chocolate and caramel as well.

Taste: Cherries, bourbon, oak, chocolate, caramel. Reminds me a bit of an old ale (cherry adam). Then I get some raisins, plums, dried fruits, and vanilla. Very well done.

Mouthfeel: Smooth, creamy, and warm. Medium to full bodied with a medium amount of carbonation. Ends malty with bourbon, oak, and vanilla. Smooth.

Overall, this is simply an amazing beer. Reminded me of an old ale, but much bigger. Very good and extremely drinkable for being 17%. I was impressed.

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Photo of Vengeance526
3.89/5  rDev -10.6%
look: 4 | smell: 5 | taste: 3.5 | feel: 4.5 | overall: 3

Pours a dark brown color with a decent sized tan head that holds up well and leaves a good bit of sticky lacing behind.

Amazing aroma filled with hints of vanilla, caramel, brown sugar and bourbon. Definitely a very sweet aroma but pulled off fairly well so it doesn't create a problem despite how rich it comes off initially.

Now what worked out great in the nose may become problematic in the taste depending on how much you drink. As in the aroma, a mix of flavors come out in full force...chocolate, caramel, vanilla, oak, brown sugar, molasses and dark fruits with a very prominent taste of bourbon throughout. The alcohol is obviously there and isn't shy. Basically, the taste started off great but after a while, I think there's just too much going on and it starts too seem way too sweet. Still good though, I just wouldn't want quite as much at once if I had this again.

Full body with a smooth mouthfeel. Again, this was very interesting and sounded like a great concept on paper but probably impractical at the same time. BT was great, but this one started to seem like overkill after a while. Again way too sweet. Still, I can't deny how great that aroma was and the first taste was still amazing. I probably killed the experience by drinking too much but that's why I can't call this the most drinkable thing out there.

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Photo of kfsv034
4.4/5  rDev +1.1%
look: 4.5 | smell: 4.5 | taste: 4.5 | feel: 4.5 | overall: 4

A - Pours a black color with with a tannish head that leaves a thin ring around the edge and a nice lacing down the glass

S - carmel, vanilla, dark fruits, sugar, some bourbony alcohol

T - Starts out with dark fruits and transitions into carmel, vanilla and some alcohol

M - Medium to full bodied

D - Drinkability is minimal considering this is 17% but its damn good I mean I would like to drink more I would just get sloppy!

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Photo of xpimptastikx
2.95/5  rDev -32.2%
look: 3.5 | smell: 3.5 | taste: 3 | feel: 3 | overall: 2

alfrantzell graciously hooked me up with a bottle each of the new reserve releases. I'm pretty excited to finally try some of their bigger brews.

A - Pours a dark brown with tan head. Sits black in the glass with a spot or two of lace.

S - The is the best part of the beer. Bourbon, vanilla, caramel, alcohol, a little fig, and oh wait, another heaping of alcohol...

T - Considering this is a blend of three ridiculously big beers and then thrown in a barrel extra long, there's a little too much going on. Way too sweet, caramel, candi sugar, alcohol, molasses, candi sugar, alcohol, vanilla, candi sugar, oak, chocolate, and candi sugar.

M/D - This is a pure dessert beer. Low carbonation, a little thin, and only able to barely sip on.

The Bruery needs to invest in 25mL bottles for these ridiculous offerings they keep putting out. It's like an overpowering whiskey, it needs to be diluted so you can actually enjoy it. Last night 5 people were at a tasting and there was still 5oz left in the bottle that was poured down the drain. This was a disappointment considering the availability and price. I think I'm done with the ultra huge BA beers.

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Melange No. 3 from The Bruery
96 out of 100 based on 250 ratings.