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Sour In The Rye - The Bruery

Not Rated.
Sour In The RyeSour In The Rye

Educational use only; do not reuse.

286 Reviews
no score

(Send Samples)
Reviews: 286
Hads: 2,363
Avg: 4.24
pDev: 26.42%
Wants: 340
Gots: 667 | FT: 72
Brewed by:
The Bruery visit their website
California, United States

Style | ABV
American Wild Ale |  7.80% ABV

Availability: Rotating

Notes & Commercial Description:
Beer added by: womencantsail on 08-09-2009

We brewed this ale with around 40% rye as a base malt and let our sour yeast and bacteria eat away at it in oak barrels for over a year creating a sour ale with a complex character of rye spice, oak and a subtle funk.
Beer: Reviews & Ratings
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Reviews: 286 | Hads: 2,363
Photo of joeseppy
4.25/5  rDev +0.2%
look: 4 | smell: 4 | taste: 4.5 | feel: 4 | overall: 4.25

Pours a pinkish hue, cloudy and white foamy head that dissipates quickly.

Funk aroma rises with some wood. Rye and vanilla also can be picked out.

Onrush of sweetness ensued by sour. Liquid candy.

Lower end carbonation and a nice dryness to it and some puckering.

Pulverize Sweetart candy add a light bodied brew and bingo. You pick the flavours, cherry, lime, lemon, grape--it's all there. Nicely layered and complete. A wild ale not to be passed on.

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Photo of RonaldTheriot
4.73/5  rDev +11.6%
look: 4.75 | smell: 4.75 | taste: 4.75 | feel: 4.5 | overall: 4.75

The Bruery Sour in the Rye 2013 Edition has a medium, soapy, off-white head, a milky, quite bubbly, orange appearance, and some lacing left on the glass, but not a whole lot of it. The aroma is of sourness, sour fruit, white bread, old wooden furniture, and dust on old furniture. Taste is of Sweet-Tarts candy, duck sauce, white bread, citrus, old wood, stomach acid, vanilla, and a background bitterness. Mouthfeel is medium to heavy and slick, and Sour in the Rye (2013) finishes semi-dry, easy drinking, sour, and interesting. Exquisite!


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Photo of bmwats
4.25/5  rDev +0.2%
look: 3.5 | smell: 4 | taste: 4.5 | feel: 4.25 | overall: 4.25

Poured from a 750 ml bottle, into a snifter.

A: Orange/amber hue. Pours a 1 finger, bubbly, white head. Dissipates quickly. Effervescence continues to rise throughout. Very slight lacing quickly retreats.

S: Rye, strong raspberry, and a hint of wood.

T: Fermented raspberry is prominent. A nice dose of wood from the barrel age balances it out.

M: Sour with a little sweet. The balance of the wood and fruit gives it rustic character. Sour throughout, but not a heavy finish.

D: Sip and savor.

Atmosphere is pretty nice. Light head, plenty of effervescence, very little lacing. Nose is pungent rye, and sweet fermented fruit, with a nice kick of wood. Fermented raspberry, balanced with a rustic woody character. Overall, this is a great quaff.

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Photo of artoolemomo
4.24/5  rDev 0%
look: 4 | smell: 4.25 | taste: 4.25 | feel: 4.25 | overall: 4.25

Appearance- Was received with very little head. If I had to guess, the head was a pure cotton white. The body is a hazy, medium amber that has an odd tint of purple to it. Minimal amounts of lacing are left behind.

Nose- A little more subtle than the Apricot au Poivre and this is unexpected. Sour cherry dominates the nose with lemon following behind. A good amount of earth and muskiness make this a little more interesting than the Apricot. Somehow the cherry in this seems deeper and fleshier. It recalls a kriek to some degree.

Taste- Lemon and sour cherry hit you immediately on the front. This is a tart beer but it is more than manageable. Strawberry shows up as well. The rye character (which mutes the tartness) starts to show itself with some cereal (very present) and slight spice. The rye really lingers on the finish and gives the beer a slightly dry finish. The aspect makes this beer profoundly more interesting.

Mouthfeel- Medium bodied with some syrup and somewhat of a vinous texture. Very light carbonation but still has enough zip to match up with the spice and tartness of the flavor profile.

Drinkability- Reasonably tart with a beneficial dry finish. I think this goes for about 10-15 dollars. 10 seems reasonable but 15 might be pushing it.

Overall- This is pretty much a basic expression of what the Bruery does. If you don't like it, you probably won't like many of their beers (or at least their beers you can just buy on the shelf of your local bottleshop). Really good beer that flirts at the edge of greatness.

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Photo of Gambelli
4.31/5  rDev +1.7%
look: 4.25 | smell: 4.5 | taste: 4.25 | feel: 4.25 | overall: 4.25

25 oz. champagne styled bottle. Received from Craftshack. Only way we can get new beers in my neck of the woods. Poured into a Russian River "Tion" goblet.

A- Orange/apricot in color, slightly cloudy. Pour yields a 1/2" head which completely vanishes in just a minute or two.

S- Acidic/tart/sourness right away, with a hint of oak woodiness behind that. Yeast, earthy funk and a slight wine like aroma in it as well. A tiny bit of spicy rye there too.

T- Puckering sourness, green apple skins, sour grape, lime and brett funk all swirling around the hyped up taste buds. A bit of oak on the palate as well. I get no malt body at all what with the intense sour fruits crushing everything in their path.

M- Tangy, with light-medium carbonation. Not a lot of body, but once again, the sourness dominates most aspects of this brew. After sampling about a half-dozen wild ales, this seems to be a characteristic of the style.

O-This is good for a change, though I couldn't make a steady diet of it. Like my malted grains too much. For the sours I've had this is an above average offering from the Bruery. Would try again during warm weather, and see if it drinks different then.

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Photo of RaulMondesi
4.32/5  rDev +1.9%
look: 4 | smell: 4.5 | taste: 4.25 | feel: 4.5 | overall: 4.25

There was once this lil minx in Jr. high that would make Raul shrivel up in adolescent angst as he walked by her everyday. (She was a freak and Raul was well justified in doing so.) Well, Sour in the Rye reminds me of that; Raul's lil heart would just twist up in sour, tart angst as he saw her. And you know what? I still like it.

Tart, sour, delicate... Yep!

Give Raul another!

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Photo of dgilks
4.34/5  rDev +2.4%
look: 4 | smell: 4.25 | taste: 4.5 | feel: 4.25 | overall: 4.25

Hazy orange colour with a slightly foamy light tab head. Fair head retention.

Complex aroma. Sour, tart aroma. Big lemony character. Goat.

Massive tart flavour. Lactic sourness pairs up with big berry flavour. Spicy rye. Acetic.

Medium body with moderately high carbonation. Refreshing.

Excellent beer. Complex flavour rounded out by oak. Nice.

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Photo of Goblinmunkey7
4.22/5  rDev -0.5%
look: 3.75 | smell: 4.25 | taste: 4.25 | feel: 4.25 | overall: 4.25

Appearance: Slightly ruddy copper with some dark burnt orange. Tiny white head drops to a miniscule bubbly collar. No lacing. Moderate carbonation.

Smell: Slight rye spiciness. Nicely tart with a lactic push. Some straight lemon Some fruity elements, serving akin to tart cherry. Malts are mild offering women slight sweetness. Lightly floral. Oak adds a nice woody earthy element to the whole thing. Warming gives the rye a bit more of an edge, keeping a nice soft spiciness.

Taste: Tart and more tart. Slightly acetic, but pushes heavy on the lactic acid. Some lemon and generic tart fruit. Oak barrel influence adds some woody elements that work to balance the tart edge. Slightly floral with a fruity element as well. A mild powdery element. Rye adds a backing soft spiciness. Delightful. Some mildly sweet pale malts.

Mouthfeel: Slickish medium to light body. Astringent yet juicy. Moderate carbonation.

Overall: Salinger's greatest work.

Another Bruery sour worth drinking.

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Photo of angrybabboon
4.36/5  rDev +2.8%
look: 4 | smell: 4.25 | taste: 4.5 | feel: 4 | overall: 4.5

Cheers to Goblinmunkey7 for sharing this beer

Consumed 1/14/13

Note: 2011 bottle

Appearance: Medium amber, with some copper and orange tones when held to the light - lightly hazy - pours with a medium, beige head, leaves some nice streaks of lacing

Smell: Nicely, nicely sour - some rye, but the most interesting aroma here is really the funk - tart, acidic sour, with some lemons - a touch of lactic sourness, but mostly it's straight-up acid - some other sour fruits as well (I realize there are no cherries in here, but it kind of smells like there are) - some wood and some pale malts

Taste: Sour, sour, sour, and some rye - really nice sourness, very acidic, with some serious tartness - some lactic sourness - lemons and some sour cherry-like sourness (again, no cherries) - some nice rye flavor - some general spiciness - tartness, and then more tartness - some nice oak as well

Mouthfeel: Medium body, nice carbonation, smooth, finishes tart

Overall: Sour in the Tart

This is an exceptional sour from The Bruery. It's unexpectedly sour, extremely tart, with some genuinely interesting fruit flavors. Arguably, unlike some other Bruery offerings, this is legitimately worth the price of admission.

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Photo of SeatsTaken
4.84/5  rDev +14.2%
look: 4.5 | smell: 4.75 | taste: 5 | feel: 4.75 | overall: 4.75

Pour: Poured into a tulip glass. Appearance is deep glowing amber in color with half an inch of head.

Aroma: Extremely oaky with notes of tart berry, spice rack and sour citrus. This beer smells wild, sour, and also has crispness on the nose.

Taste: Upfront sour taste. There is green apple, sour grapes and the tartness of lemon-lime. I taste a flavor reminiscent of an extremely fruit-forward Pinot Noir. The middle is dominated with a sharp rye and oak flavor. The finish is deliciously tangy and sour without being overstated. It is a beautiful melding of flavors.

Mouthfeel: Heavy carbonation and extremely crisp.

Overall: One of the most delicious sour beers I have ever tasted. The smell is delightfully crisp and the sourness is intense, but not over powering. The aroma is the perfect spoiler-free trailer for this blockbuster of a beer. I recommend this beer to anyone who enjoys sours and will definitely be buying several more.

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Photo of tmzl
4.5/5  rDev +6.1%
look: 4 | smell: 4.5 | taste: 4.75 | feel: 3.75 | overall: 4.5

2013 bottle

Look: Pours with 1 thumb off-white foam, big bubbles, very fast retention. There is some carbonation. Color is deep amber, red, slightly cloudy. Looks good, promising.

Smell: Sour hits you first. then goes into fruity, wine, sweetness. Then comes the brilliant balance with funk, leathery, cellar, musty notes. Also some spice and woody character. You just have to taste it, some interesting shit.

Taste: The sour part explodes in your mouth, but isn't overwhelming. Sour apples, lemon, lime, some forest fruits, berries. Also spicy at start. There is a hint of sweet, malty character in the middle but the musty, funky, earthy part kicks in very soon after. Some very subtle oak there too. In the aftertaste the sour and funk linger with a hint of sweetness. But they don't get annoying or overblown with progressive drinking, stays fresh and interesting.

Mouthfeel: Dry. Carbonation surprisingly alive, makes it a quite refreshing and fun beer to drink. There is no alcohol warming. The body is medium and leaves a creamy feeling.

Overall: Surprised by the refreshing yet very complex nature of this beer. The balance of funk and sour is superb and very fun to observe. Superb job. Fck ye.

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Photo of mtomlins
4.35/5  rDev +2.6%
look: 4.5 | smell: 4.5 | taste: 4.25 | feel: 4 | overall: 4.5

Poured from a 750ml bottle (2013 vintage) into a stemmed tulip glass and shared with a coupe friends.

A golden body with a beautiful reddish hue, massive lacing. A massive nose that is dry, spicy with lots of acidic citrus and a massive tart/sour aroma, slightly sweet. The palate is sour and acidic; a bit salty. The rye keeps the malt dry and spicy, the sweetness in the nose is absent on the palate. Not much oak. It finishes long and tart. Medium body and carbonation. Wow, a really nice brew; super tight.

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Photo of KVNBGRY
4.71/5  rDev +11.1%
look: 4.25 | smell: 5 | taste: 4.75 | feel: 4.5 | overall: 4.5

2013 bottle

Appearance - Slight haze on an otherwise brilliant golden body. Quickly receding white head, leaves continuous spotty lacing.

Aroma - Vanilla, brett, pear, cider, artificial sweetener

Taste - Sour acidity, oaky vanilla, slight rye spice, hint of leather

Mouthfeel - Puckering, drying, mouthcoating. Perfect carbonation. Enamel, and stomach lining ripping sourness. Light -> medium bodied.

Overall - Sour, barrel aged perfection. Vicious, sour, in your face awesomeness! Not for the faint of heart.

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Photo of dirtylou
4.68/5  rDev +10.4%
look: 4.5 | smell: 4.5 | taste: 4.75 | feel: 4.75 | overall: 4.75

750ml bottle, split

Really nice looking beer - apricot body, nice light carbonation. Extremely sour - prickly tartness, lemon zest, layers of citrus, funky yeast, nice barrel notes, peach, lime. A very impressive american wild ale - worth the high price tag unlike some of the other bruery disasters (tart of darkness - BLEH)

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Photo of AgentMunky
4.39/5  rDev +3.5%
look: 4 | smell: 4.25 | taste: 4.5 | feel: 4.25 | overall: 4.5

Served in a tasting glass at Buzz in LA. From notes. Reviewed 23 February 2013.

A: Hazy clear.

S: Wonderfully tart. Brett and wild yeast. Raspberries and lemon peel. Acidic.

T: Delicious. Like Rodenbach Grand Cru with more fresh cherry and raspberry.

M: Dry and puckery. Great yeast. Sour and lightly spicy.

O: I love it. Highly recommended. Will have again. Very competent and enjoyable example of the style.

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Photo of biegaman
4.13/5  rDev -2.6%
look: 3.75 | smell: 3.75 | taste: 4.25 | feel: 4.5 | overall: 4.25

Sour in the Rye might just as well be called 'Cloudy in the Rye'; oak aging alters a beer's appearance as well as its flavour, stripping the complexion of much its luster and leaving it muddied, flat, and, in the case of this honey-coloured ale, rather drab.

A year in the barrel is bound to make any ale smell a little musty, but the oak surprisingly doesn't contribute any glaringly obvious qualities. The aroma has somewhat of woody, vanillin tinge but it's awfully difficult to appreciate amidst such a sour, dank, fruity lactic funk.

The flavour is a tangy, prickly, pleasantly puckering blend of citrus fruits, cherries in balsamic vinegar, and apricot or pear compote. There's the presence of heartier whole grains but little malty flavour can be appreciated due to the abundance of vinegar-like lactic tang.

The mouthfeel has the both the acidity and sourness of lemonade (without the sweetness of course) as well as an agreeable sour gummy-like characteristic - it's liquid candy for adults. And despite the 7.8% alcohol it drinks as easily as (soured, festering) fruit juice.

If you think about it, actual fruits are typically somewhat tart as well as sweet; this is true, to varying degrees, of apples, blackberries, blueberries, cherries, plums, currants, etc. American Wild Ales like Sour in the Rye simulate the fruits of Mother Nature's labours (pun intended) and, using another wonder of nature (wild yeast), simply amp up the tart part. What a treat!

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Photo of BEERchitect
4.24/5  rDev 0%
look: 4 | smell: 4.25 | taste: 4.25 | feel: 4.25 | overall: 4.25

Very few beers strike the palate with the perfect complement of sour, earth, fruit and spice. But its good news that one such beer is made in California and I'm fortunate enough to taste a sip from now and then.

Its turbulent pour leads to a quick separation of hazt golden-orange beer to anchor and a frothy and airy eggshell-white foam.Its retention is strong as is its intricate lacing patterns.

Piercing sharpness reaches the nose with lime, white wine vinegar, sour grapes and crab apples. As its mere scent locks up the jowls, other musty wood, cork, sweaty, cellar and sea air scents waft about to deliver savory and earhty impressions heading into taste.

Its raw earthiness is spicy and rustic as the rye grains complement a dry, lighlty toasted crouton taste, but with all that acidity building above. Just into the taste, the lime, apple skin and sour grape flavor takes hold and easily topples its early malt complement. Quickly developing into dries lemons, limes, apple and spiced pear, its the sourness of apple cider vinegar and light must that stems from the clean lactic sourness that finishes its taste.

Only a whisper of attic wood and lime extend, even though the ale starts out light and obviously acidic. As the malt support fades, the ale prances on with wine-like balances and textures, until a quick finish is mineral-rich and with earthen spice.

The taste of rye and sour is a challenging attempt as both types are highly polarizing and not widespread just yet. But its added complexity is undeniable taste that's salty, briney and deeply earthen.

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Photo of dogfishandi
4.17/5  rDev -1.7%
look: 4.25 | smell: 4 | taste: 4.25 | feel: 4.5 | overall: 4

750ml bottle at fridge temp poured into a snifter.

Pours out a really nice deep orange bordering on almost red, fairly clear body. Big 3-4 fingers of fizzy off white head off of the pour quickly receeds to a thick ring and eventually nothing.

Nice musty funk aroma, but a bit one dimensional in that aspect. Also shows some lemon citrus and sour cherry as it warms.

Musty basement, big lemon citrus sourness, sour pie cherry. Some wine like flavors, maybe a result of the barrel it was aged in or just the higher ABV that I'm tasting. Just a tinge of sweet malty, almost meaty character like you would find in a Flanders red, but I'd say this has way more in common with a gueze or lambic. Little to no rye found here.

A very sour beer, mouth puckering sour, really lingers on the palate. Medium to light in body with a somewhat aggressive carbonation.

Somewhat of a one dimensional sour, has everything you would expect in a good sour, but lacks any extra complexity. Still top notch and worthy of a bottle for the cellar, still another well made beer from the bruery.

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Photo of rand
4.55/5  rDev +7.3%
look: 4 | smell: 4.5 | taste: 4.75 | feel: 4.25 | overall: 4.5

From tap to Duvel tulip glass

Copied from my Sour in the Rye with Cumquats, with relative edits

A: Orange-mahogany in color, its effervescent head quickly dissipates.

S: Tart, vinegary aspects anchor the bouquet. Notes of unripe cherry linger. The brew is sour enough to tighten your glands before it hits your palate.

T: Puckering sour at the front, refreshing with lemony vinegar notes. Oak and unripe berries pop up mid sip, with a touch of lingering sweetness toward a short, clean finish. Alcohol is almost completely masked.

M: Light bodied and effervescent, especially considering the ABV.

Almost identical to the Sour with Cumquats, without the citrusy twist. No discernible difference between tap and bottle.

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Photo of Jmamay22
4.05/5  rDev -4.5%
look: 4 | smell: 4.5 | taste: 3.75 | feel: 3.75 | overall: 4.25

Purchased this as a birthday treat for myself. Finally getting around to it. Beer pours a dark gold amber with a lively white head that fades to a full collar. Strong notes of vanilla in the nose. Plenty of sour acid as well. A touch of sour apples too.

Tastes very fruity with plenty of apples and pear. The sourness is very apparent and strong with acetic acid. Very little if any rye impact. A touch of sweetness on the end with maybe some sour cherry. Mouthfeel is on the lighter sid of medium with lively carbonation that seems to increase the impact of the sourness. A truly wild sour ale with the acid overtaking some of the subtleties.

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Photo of superspak
4.42/5  rDev +4.2%
look: 4 | smell: 4.5 | taste: 4.5 | feel: 4 | overall: 4.5

750 ml bottle into tulip glass, bottled in 2013. Pours lightly hazy orange amber color with a 1-2 finger dense off white head with good retention, that reduces to a thin cap that lingers. Spotty soapy lacing clings on the glass. Aromas of big sour cherry, green apple, pear, clove, pepper, oak, vinegar, hay, straw, funk, red wine, leather, bread, and yeast earthiness. Incredible aromas with great complexity and balance of tart fruity/spicy/funky lacto with wine barrel notes; and great strength. Taste of big sour cherry, green apple, pear, clove, pepper, oak, hay, straw, vinegar, red wine, leather, bread, and yeast earthiness. Good amount of fruity sourness on the finish; with lingering notes of sour cherry, green apple, pear, clove, pepper, oak, vinegar, hay, straw, red wine, leather, bread, and yeast earthiness on the finish for a while. Fantastic complexity and balance of sour fruity/funky lacto, wine barrel, and malt flavors; with a great malt/acidity balance and zero cloying flavors after the finish. Medium carbonation and body; with a crisp, smooth, and moderately acidic mouthfeel that is great. Alcohol is very well hidden with only a light warming present after the finish. Overall this is an insane wild ale! All around fantastic complexity and balance of sour fruity/funky lacto with balanced malt and wine barrel flavors; and very smooth to sip on with the balanced acidity. An amazing offering.

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Photo of deschutes_fan
4.25/5  rDev +0.2%
look: 4 | smell: 4.5 | taste: 4.25 | feel: 3.75 | overall: 4.25

2012 Bottle

- Pours a hazy harvest orange/brown.

- Smell is really strong sour tart with some dry wheat/grain aromas.

- Taste is monster lemon sour warhead in your face followed by even more sour with the vinegar acidity. Decent complexity with the subtle oak and spicy rye notes on the finish that leave a dry palate.

- Overall an insane beer. Way over the top sour, I would say most sour beer I've had and I've had many (still waiting to try Tart of Darkness). But also a fun beer to drink, not muddled or confused, straight to the point. I could see aging potential here, maybe several years to allow the sourness to integrate into the rye and oak.

Definitely a beer to share with a friend or 2, trying to guzzle down 25.7oz of this may seriously lower your body's pH level ;-)

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Photo of dwren89
4.63/5  rDev +9.2%
look: 4.75 | smell: 4.75 | taste: 4.5 | feel: 4.5 | overall: 4.75

Appearance: orangey amber with thin off white head and cloudy

Aroma: sour, lactic notes and spicy rye character evident, cherry, vanilla

Taste: vanilla and oaky at first but then cherry flavor comes thru and finishes pleasantly bitter finish

Mouthfeel: thick and full but the sourness cuts the mouth feel to make it a little more drinkable

Overall: great beer! Just like how they do it in Belgium. Great cherry and sour notes that are made more complex by the oaky/vanilla notes. Spicy rye malt kicks up the flavor more than wheat does in many Belgian sours.

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Photo of DaftCaskBC
4.62/5  rDev +9%
look: 4 | smell: 4.5 | taste: 4.75 | feel: 4.5 | overall: 4.75

A: Slight white head over deep amber liquid, almost brown.

S: Lacto, pears, citrus and grass.

T: Apples, lacto, pears, lemon, spice, and oak.

M: Medium viscosity and a medium level of carbonation. Very tart.

O: Beautiful. A great sour that I would drink again in a heartbeat.

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Photo of tectactoe
4.3/5  rDev +1.4%
look: 4.5 | smell: 4.5 | taste: 4.25 | feel: 4 | overall: 4.25

Thanks to Jeff for splitting his bottle. Now that this is available in Michigan, I can decide whether or not it's worth dropping 17-18$ on a few bottles for myself. Super clear and clean amber body with a fuzzy and fizzling, off-white cap. The head sparks up like foam from a soda and is gone in just a few moments. I've gotta say... I wasn't expecting this kind of clarity from a wild ale, but it looks really nice.

Whew... crazy tart aroma. The kind of aroma that stings your nostrils and gets jettisoned into your brain cells, sending your saliva glands into sprinkler mode. Lots and lots of vinegar, lactic acid and wet oak, accompanied by lighter fruit reminders like lemon flesh, peels, and wet cherry skins. Tannins abound with some woody dryness at the end. This is going to be tart... I just know it.

First sip causes immediate puckering of the lips, cheeks touching, glands sweating, etc... Super tart up-front, no holds barred type of shit here. Wincing white wine vinegar, soaked oak, acidic and lactic acid, prompt stone fruit skins, a touch of lemon juice, and the most faint appearance of dry rye in the finish. Perhaps my senses are tricking me with the rye dryness... it could be a quality of the oak-aging as well.

Sour in the Rye is a sourheads dream, but be warned - while there is plentiful vinous presence here, white grapes, oak, and the like, the vinegar aspect outweighs it by quite a bit. I know many sour fans who aren't too keen on the heavy "vinegar" flavors, but luckily - I am, and so Sour in the Rye floats almost every boat that I have. Thin, wet, crispy and sharp mouth feel with a gum line receding dryness in the finish.

Very awesome stuff, if you're into puckeringly sour and vinegar-laden wild ales. This brew isn't for everyone, but it's certainly for me. Although it's sometimes hard to justify spending nearly 20$ for a bottle of beer, I think I can easily make a case in my mind to keep a few bottles of Sour in the Rye stocked at all times, when I'm in the mood for something white wine-y and sour.

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Sour In The Rye from The Bruery
94 out of 100 based on 286 ratings.