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Papier - The Bruery

Not Rated.
PapierPapier

Displayed for educational use only; do not reuse.
BA SCORE
90
outstanding

195 Ratings
THE BROS
-
no score

(send 'em beer!)
Ratings: 195
Reviews: 100
rAvg: 4.02
pDev: 14.43%
Wants: 218
Gots: 68 | FT: 5
Brewed by:
The Bruery visit their website
California, United States

Style | ABV
Old Ale |  14.50% ABV

Availability: Limited (brewed once)

Notes/Commercial Description:
This beer is retired; no longer brewed.

Papier is our first anniversary ale, loosely brewed in the English-style Old Ale tradition using our house Belgian yeast strain. The traditional first anniversary gift is something made of paper. The Bruery is giving their loyal fans the gift of Papier, their first anniversary ale. Layered with complex flavors of dark fruit,vanilla, oak, and burnt sugar, Papier is a robust ale, surely the perfect beer to mark our first big milestone. Best for sharing, this beer is ideal for cellaring until you have a celebration of your own…if you can wait.

(Beer added by: Halcyondays on 05-16-2009)
Beer: Ratings & Reviews
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Ratings: 195 | Reviews: 100 | Display Reviews Only:
Photo of Sammy
3.63/5  rDev -9.7%
look: 4 | smell: 4 | taste: 3.5 | feel: 3.5 | overall: 3.5

Bottle at The Ginger Man. Black with little faint lace dots. Faint bourbon aroma. Like a chocolate burboun barleywine. Rich, but a sipper, and would need a whole meal. Not so drinkable right after work. A characteristic is that it is a bit syrupy, slick oily.

Sammy, Feb 21, 2010
Photo of t0rin0
4.25/5  rDev +5.7%

t0rin0, Mar 02, 2013
Photo of UCLABrewN84
4.23/5  rDev +5.2%
look: 3 | smell: 4 | taste: 4.5 | feel: 3.5 | overall: 4.5

Bottle pour at the Bruery Reserve Society initiation party at The Phoenix Club in Anaheim, CA.

Pours a murky dark brown with no head and no lace. Smell is of malt, fruits, wood, and bourbon. Taste is of malt, dark fruits, wood, and bourbon flavors. This beer has a lower level of carbonation with a medium bodied mouthfeel. Overall, this is a very good old ale and a nice first anniversary beer.

UCLABrewN84, Mar 18, 2012
Photo of djrn2
4/5  rDev -0.5%

djrn2, Nov 27, 2011
Photo of Thorpe429
4.53/5  rDev +12.7%
look: 4 | smell: 4.5 | taste: 4.5 | feel: 5 | overall: 4.5

Reviewed from notes. Beer was about a year old when consumed. Thanks to bmanning for pulling this out.

Pours a nice caramel tan color with a slight head that dissipates somewhat quickly. Fairly impressive that it was there for as long as it was. The nose brings forward a bit of booze, dark sugars, caramel, nice fruits, and some toffee. The taste really integrates everything quite well--the booze is there but there is some nice sweetness and great fruit notes in addition to some toffee. Medium feel with really nice warmth. A very nice beer that is aging quite well.

Thorpe429, Oct 23, 2010
Photo of zestar
4/5  rDev -0.5%

zestar, Sep 08, 2013
Photo of spycow
3.75/5  rDev -6.7%

spycow, Jan 13, 2013
Photo of brentk56
3.4/5  rDev -15.4%
look: 2 | smell: 4 | taste: 4 | feel: 2 | overall: 2.5

Bottle #2269

Appearance: Pours a carbonation free burnt caramel that leaves no lace

Smell: A boozy blend of brown sugar, oak, bourbon, vanilla and a range of dark fruit

Taste: Opens with a boozy blend of bourbon soaked dried fruit (raisins and prunes), cocoa powder, bruised apple, cherries and vanilla that gets hotter by mid-palate; after the swallow, the bourbon elements add increasing complexity and linger into the finish

Mouthfeel: Thick, viscous and chewy, but flat

Drinkability: Maybe this will improve in a few decades (per the label) but right now the flatness and booziness makes it hard to enjoy; I don't think the lack of carbonation from San Diego breweries is a trend that has any legs

brentk56, Jan 05, 2010
Photo of BEERchitect
4.3/5  rDev +7%
look: 3.5 | smell: 4.5 | taste: 4.5 | feel: 4 | overall: 4

It's pretty clear to me that this is what an Old Ale should be. A lot of complexity that derives from not-so-pretty starting elements but evolve to become rich in its maturity, varying in its age, and beautiful in its art.

The beer decants with a rusty mohogany, ruby haze, and garnet hues. Very, very low carbonation is a testiment to long term storage but does render the beer somewhat lifeless. Though carbonation, head formation, and retention are terse (to say the least), the beer shows classic brandy lacing on the glass, thus changing my mindset to expectations of port wines or liquors.

Extremely rich and bursting with flavors. The evidence of this is noticed in the heavy alcohol, fruit, and rubustness of the nose. Plumbs, figs, dates, raisons, bruised apples, grapes, cherries, prunes, and raspberries all come to life along with a rich rum-soaked fruitcake complexity, sweetness, and heartiness. Soy sauce and sherry notes give rise to the maturity of the beer and add even another layer to the unwaivering variety- virtually a new flavor with every sip. Throw in a hint of cocoa here, a dash of dustiness there, and a sprinkle of spicy cinnamon and nutmeg all about and we have a beery song that will rival the hokey pokey.

With all the flavor and smooth textures, it's easy to dismiss the low carbonation- the beer is just that good. Still, rich and lightly velvety with an unforgettable warmth and numbing to the mouth. Substantial bitterness seems part hops and part astringency from grain. Finishes with a long sweet linger of dehydrated fruits and sherry.

As wonderful and powerul as this beer is, the lack of carbonation leaves a pause mid way through that seems a bit void of vibrancy and life- maybe a bit of carbonation would help out here to help the beer making a transition from initial flavor to the long lasting aftertaste.

Thanks jlindros!

BEERchitect, Sep 14, 2009
Photo of mikesgroove
4.47/5  rDev +11.2%
look: 4 | smell: 4.5 | taste: 4.5 | feel: 4.5 | overall: 4.5

Thrilled to get to pop open this black wax capped 750 last night. I seriously needed this one after a mentally trying evening. Served at cellar temp into a snifter, this one was consumed on 10/06/2009.
 
The pour was what I had heard about so I expected the flatness and stillness of it. Dark garnet brown in color with only a small amount of bubbles on the side of the glass that quickly faded themselves leaving a motionless and still liquid in the glass. As I sipped though it did leave some nice touches of foam down the sides of the glass so that made me happy. Aroma is very sweet, lots of vanilla and butterscotch on the nose right away. Caramel and other sweet notes dropping in behind a touch of vanilla. Very well put together I have to admit. Warming brings out a subtleness that is just sublime I have to admit. I go in for the for the first sip and a wave of toffee and butterscotch coat the tongue, again just what I am looking for here and really very nicely done. Rich notes of vanilla and caramel, earthy with a fine touch of woody flavor as well. Seemingly endlessly complex a light booziness now starts to take over. Not flat at all, just very lightly carbonated and this actually really worked quite well for me here. ABV well hidden despite the high strength and this only served to further the delightful experience.
 
Overall this was just what I had wanted. A finally crafter old ale that really just hit the spot. I am continued to be impressed with everything I try from the Bruery. Top notch for sure.

mikesgroove, Oct 07, 2009
Photo of GRG1313
4.43/5  rDev +10.2%
look: 4 | smell: 4.5 | taste: 4.5 | feel: 4 | overall: 4.5

Pours a dark brown with a smooth tan head. Nose is complex and inviting. Sweet whiskey hits you first and yields to sweet fruit, molasses, vanilla and hints of sweet cherry.

Mouthfeel is big and full although some age will make it a bit "thicker." A bit thinner than one might expect but, again, age will improve this characteristic.

Flavors follow the nose with dark cooked fruit, plums and figs, brown sugar/malt and full of whiskey tones. Big, full bodied and expressive flavors with a full rich finish. This is going to be superb with some age. One can only imagine the rarer barrell aged versions which I will open as part of a tasting...a tasting soon since I'm one who likely won't be able to wait!

This is a brew worth trying now and very much worth following for as long as you can discipline yourself to hold some bottles. This is clearly one of the best quality beers from The Bruery.

GRG1313, Jun 29, 2009
Photo of womencantsail
3.8/5  rDev -5.5%
look: 3 | smell: 4 | taste: 4 | feel: 3.5 | overall: 3.5

I've had this beer many times, but finally giving it a review.

A: The beer pours a murky dark amber color with very minimal carbonation.

S: The booze has really settled down in this. You can actually get some of the caramel, toffee, brown sugar, and molasses. The vanilla and bourbon still come through. Quite a lot of oak is still present.

T: Lots of oak, vanilla, and bourbon are quick to hit your tongue. Still a bit boozy, but not annoyingly so. Caramel, toffee, and maple syrup give the beer its trademark sweetness.

M: Medium to full in body with a low level of carbonation.

O: Amazing how much better this beer has become in a couple years.

womencantsail, Jun 25, 2011
Photo of ygtbsm94
3.5/5  rDev -12.9%

ygtbsm94, Jan 12, 2012
Photo of ChainGangGuy
4.3/5  rDev +7%
look: 3.5 | smell: 4.5 | taste: 4.5 | feel: 4 | overall: 4

Appearance: Pours out a very dark brown body with a few large, migrating bubbles on top that quickly evaporate.

Smell: Rich, expressive aroma. A veritable deluge of sweet-scented notes, everything from caramel sauce to chocolate powder to those lil' charred crème brûlée tops. And such a wealth macerated fruitiness, too! Why, it's a real treat to be sniffing around this glass.

Taste: Sweet fusion of deep, dark caramel and vanilla beans with burnt, cauterized sugars and a good pinch of Dutch cocoa. The brew warms the palate nigh instantaneously and this easily makes way for the crashing waves of oaky, bourbonesque flavors to roll on in. And this one has quite a pronounced fruitiness (not that it was a surprise given the nature of the aroma) -- plenty of juicy figs, raisins, plums, and sweet cherries. Perhaps there's maybe even a small hint of smokiness in there as well. Certainly has an abundance of sweet fruitiness on the warming, heady, oak-laden finish.

Mouthfeel: Medium-bodied. Mild carbonation. Lightly sticky, almost chewy mouthfeel.

Drinkability: A slow, but oh-so satiating sipper. Plenty of oak character, but also heaps of bourbon barrel character as well even though it only represents 25% of the blend. Definitely give this one a try if you come across it!

ChainGangGuy, Nov 27, 2009
Photo of Knapp85
3.58/5  rDev -10.9%
look: 4 | smell: 3.5 | taste: 3.5 | feel: 4 | overall: 3.5

Had this on 1-12-10. Papier poured out as a light brownish color with a thin head on top. There wasn't a lot of lacing going on here. The smell was giving off a heavy amount of barrel aged aromas. I wasn't able to pick up on much bourbon though. The oak aromas overpowered most of the brew. The taste of the beer was flavorful but didn't really do much to impress me. To me this tasted a lot like a typical barley wine. The mouthfeel wasn't too bad. It had a good amount of body for a beer that's almost 15%. Overall I feel that I should have aged this brew or something. I have a feeling that it would have been much better after a year or more.

Knapp85, Jun 10, 2011
Photo of westcoastbeerlvr
4/5  rDev -0.5%

westcoastbeerlvr, Nov 14, 2011
Photo of largadeer
3.5/5  rDev -12.9%

largadeer, Feb 27, 2013
Photo of JAHMUR
4/5  rDev -0.5%

JAHMUR, Nov 14, 2011
Photo of RblWthACoz
4.05/5  rDev +0.7%
look: 4 | smell: 4 | taste: 4 | feel: 4.5 | overall: 4

Pours a real murky and clouded brown. This one is mildly hot on the flavor, but certainly not as much as you might expect. The vanilla tones are nice, and I feel like they're the most pronounced of all the character, though nothing is really screaming at me here. This is a nice sipper. I have to be honest and say that I expected more from this one. But overall, it was nice.

RblWthACoz, Aug 31, 2012
Photo of russpowell
4.28/5  rDev +6.5%
look: 3.5 | smell: 5 | taste: 4 | feel: 5 | overall: 4

Got this one from HopStoopid120, cheers Tony!

Bottle 3589 pours a semi-murky chestnut with a sliver of mocha colored head. Nice viscosity to this along with some shreds of head retention

S: Prunes, raisins, cherries & oaky booze, loads of port notes

T: Dark fruit, woodyness, cherries, a touch licorice schnapps & much dryness up front, some leafy hops & figs in the mix. Chocolate covered cherries, boozey figs & dryness dominate as this warms. Finishes with much oak, a little cherry, a bit more booze, & just a bit too much dryness to give 4.5, close

MF: Chewy as all get out, fairly still carbonation, pretty warming indeed

Drinks a touch slow, but spot-on for style & ABV. Maybe I should've waited, would love try this in about 4 months when the weather should be at least 35 degrees cooler; but curiosity & my sweet tooth was calling. Not bad, but I'd love to have a case or 2 of this & just see how it gets better. Not bad at all for its young age as it is...

russpowell, Sep 11, 2009
Photo of mendvicdog
4.5/5  rDev +11.9%

mendvicdog, Jan 06, 2013
Photo of Mora2000
4.33/5  rDev +7.7%
look: 4 | smell: 4.5 | taste: 4.5 | feel: 4 | overall: 4

Thanks to bman1113vr for sharing this bottle.

Bottle No. 1,377 of 4,777. The beer pours a dark brown color with a tan head. The aroma is dark fruit, oak, vanilla, chocolate and alcohol. The flavor is caramel, toffee, oak, vanilla and bourbon. The alcohol is very well hidden for a beer that has nearly 15 percent alcohol. This is one of the most drinkable high alcohol beers I have tried. Low carbonation and medium mouthfeel.

Mora2000, May 19, 2010
Photo of mdfb79
3.31/5  rDev -17.7%
look: 3.5 | smell: 3.75 | taste: 3.25 | feel: 3.25 | overall: 3

Have had this bottle since late 2009 or so. Heard it was a boozy mess fresh, so sat on it for a long time in a proper cellar. 750ml bottle poured into my Bruery tulip. Bottle #3628/4777..

a - Pours a murky reddish brown color with light carbonation evident and a few bubbles of dark brown head. Looks a little oxidized.

s - Smells of sweet dark fruits, alcohol, molasses, bready malts, toasted malts, light caramel malts, bourbon, roasted malts, sugar, and light cocoa. Smell is pretty good, albeit strong.

t - Tastes of sweet dark fruits, figs, plums, alcohol, molasses, burnt sugar, toasted malts, musty earthy notes, light caramel, and wood. Tastes has more alcohol present than the nose. Super boozy.

m - Thick full body and no carbonation at all. Pretty hot still.

o - Overall this is super hot, even for me who likes hot beers. The last few years have been fantastic but the first anniversary beer is a bit of a boozy mess...maybe the 100% BBAing has helped more than I thought. More fruit and less caramel, I wouldn't say this is worth seeking out, and I love their anniversary beers. Better off just buying a Cuir or Bois.

mdfb79, May 16, 2014
Photo of DrunkinYogi
4.5/5  rDev +11.9%

DrunkinYogi, Aug 08, 2014
Photo of beernads
4.5/5  rDev +11.9%

beernads, May 17, 2013
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Papier from The Bruery
90 out of 100 based on 195 ratings.