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Vitis Series: Pinotlambicus - The Bruery

Not Rated.
Vitis Series: PinotlambicusVitis Series: Pinotlambicus

Educational use only; do not reuse.
BA SCORE
91
outstanding

126 Ratings
THE BROS
-
no score

(send 'em beer!)
Ratings: 126
Reviews: 56
rAvg: 4.1
pDev: 10.98%
Wants: 110
Gots: 44 | FT: 1
Brewed by:
The Bruery visit their website
California, United States

Style | ABV
American Wild Ale |  8.40% ABV

Availability: Limited (brewed once)

Notes & Commercial Description:
Beer added by: Overlord on 11-08-2010

This beer is retired; no longer brewed.

A dry and vinous beer with hints of smokiness and a touch of oak. First running press of Pinot Noir grapes from Santa Barbara County were added to a year old blonde sour ale (called by many names around here, one you may be familiar with is Cuvee Jeune) and fermented together in stainless. The grape beer was then transferred to wine barrels and aged for 10 months. The beer is pleasantly tart, complex and refreshing; it can easily substitute a sparkling wine for any celebration.
Beer: Ratings & Reviews
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Ratings: 126 | Reviews: 56
Reviews by jmarsh123:
Photo of jmarsh123
4.27/5  rDev +4.1%
look: 3.5 | smell: 4 | taste: 4.5 | feel: 4 | overall: 4.5

Pours bright orange with a very small patchy head fading immediately. Lots of bubbles on the side of the glass. Looks a bit thin.

Very wine like aromas. Tart grape skin, lemon and oak with some subtle spice.

Again flavor is very vinous. Oak adds a certain dryness, but I would still relate this as more of a Pinot Grigio relative than something on the dryer side. Tart grape, lemon and apple. A little white pepper and a musty funk.

Despite the look has a decently thick body with high carbonation.

Very strong beer. I've had a few better, but this is a good wine/beer hybrid that still has some really good flavors. I'd be happy if this were made again.

More User Reviews:
Photo of SpeedwayJim
3.92/5  rDev -4.4%
look: 2 | smell: 2.5 | taste: 4.5 | feel: 5 | overall: 4.5

Thanks to ipa247 for this one. Shared with schen9303. Poured from a 750ml champagne bottle into a Cantillon Iris glass.

A: Standard pour yields a coarse 1 finger white head that dissipates quickly. Beer is a clear peach-apricot. No lacing. A rather shabby looking beer overall.

S: Nose is crushed spoiled peaches, white grape, and a citrus spice. No real funk or tartness and super subtle overall. Too little oomph for me.

T: Opens mellow peach, grape, and citrus tartness. Very soft. Yeasty and spicy sour towards the middle with notes of apricot, peach, and orange. Bready with a slight dryness at the end. Finish is lemon, white grapes, and some lychee. Rather mellow like the nose but exceptionally well balanced.

M: Light to medium bodied with little carbonation. Oily and slick in the mouth with some light bubbles going down. Moderately dry finish with a tingly and sticky aftertaste. Perfect in every sense here. One of the best mouthfeels I've encountered in a while. At over 8% ABV, this beer deserves a 6.

D: A big winner from the Bruery, Pintolambicus doesn't blow you away with its appearance or smell, but where it really counts in the taste and feel, this beer is second to none. Definitely worth a try.

Photo of PeprSprYoFace
3.97/5  rDev -3.2%
look: 3.5 | smell: 4 | taste: 4 | feel: 4 | overall: 4

Poured at Bruery Annaversary. 2.5 oz pour in a 5oz glass. Reviewed from notes.

Pours super cloudy with a white ring of lacing. Straw color. Little lace.

Aroma is super funky tart. Barnyard with lemon citrus tartness.

Taste is tart and funky. Like an unblended lambic or geuze. Little grassy with a slight sweetness in the finish.

Mouthfeel is very dry but kinda smooth.

Overall pretty tasty but nothing special. Would have it again if more readily available. Not worth the hassle trying to obtain though.

Photo of hooliganlife
4.07/5  rDev -0.7%
look: 4 | smell: 4.5 | taste: 4 | feel: 3.5 | overall: 4

this was released in 2010

pours a nice hazy dark golden orange. little to no head. bottle let out some gas but the beer looks rather still.

smells like gueuze, no really. lots of white grape and sour apple. a hint of vinegar. very subtle oak.

nice and tart through out. most of the flavor is from the grapes and seeing that pinot noir grapes were added to this, makes sense. very wine like. a bit of cheese and vinegar.

actually has a mild carbonation bite to it. a hint of dryness. puckering.

this was enjoyable and different. so much grape in this with a great sour base.

Photo of nickd717
3.91/5  rDev -4.6%
look: 3 | smell: 4.5 | taste: 4 | feel: 3.5 | overall: 3.5

750ml bottle obtained as a Reserve Society allocation.

The appearance of this beer is interesting. A minimal head fades quickly, and what remains is a flat-looking liquid that looks like I'd imagine 1 part red wine and 3 parts pilsner to look like. Slightly hazy golden-pinkish-reddish color.

The aroma is excellent. Huge vinous pinot noir notes, blackberries, lactic tartness and funk, and considerable oakiness from the -bals.

The flavor is a little weaker than I'd like, but that said, it's damn tasty. Nice pale malt base but not much sweetness from it, as a lactic tartness is dominant. Very big on the wine flavors, like a dry pinot, with oaky barrel notes. Some other dark fruit as well.

Nice and acidic on the mouthfeel with medium body and carbonation a little lower than I'd like, but it works fine as a beery wine substitute.

Photo of thagr81us
4.14/5  rDev +1%
look: 3 | smell: 4 | taste: 4.5 | feel: 4 | overall: 4

Had this one during the 'We Want The Funk!' tasting that was graciously hosted by beermeX2! Big thanks goes out to beermeX2 for sharing this one with the group! Served from bottle into a Mikkeller flute. Poured yellow-orange with a very minimal off-white head. There was no lacing evident throughout the glass. The aroma was comprised of sweet malt, fruit, sour, and wood. The flavor was of sweet malt, white grapes, sour, tart, and wood. It had a light feel on the palate with mild carbonation. Overall this was a pretty good brew. The aroma on this was a little bit of a letdown if I'm honest, but still pretty good. The flavor made up for this fact adding in the tart aspect to bump this one up another notch. Very glad I got the chance to try this one. I would suggest this one to others as well.

Photo of JohnGalt1
4.22/5  rDev +2.9%
look: 3.25 | smell: 4.25 | taste: 4.5 | feel: 4 | overall: 4

Probably my favorite brew from tonight's tasting...

Poured a fairly clear light orange brew... no real head or lacing....

The nose buggy/big brett and still pretty fruity.

The flavor is interesting for days.... tannic and fruity... brett/mild lactic notes... woody/definite winey presence... a heavier "Cuvee de Castleton" is my big descriptor..

The carbonation is light... body is fine for something this heavy...

3.25/4.25/4.5/4/4

Photo of jsanford
4.09/5  rDev -0.2%
look: 3 | smell: 4 | taste: 4.5 | feel: 3.5 | overall: 4

Pours a clear light amber with a very slight have that dissipates to a thin ring. Nice aromas of white wine grapes, lemon juice, hay, and a touch of white vinegar. Very signature of the Bruery's sours. Great tart wine flavors, but not as sour as I'd expected from the nose. Grape skin flavors impart a slight woody bitterness, along with more lemon juice and citric acid. Mouthfeel is light and slick, with a medium-thin body, low carbonation, and a dry, slightly astringent finish. Really solid sour from the Bruery, and a great melding of beer and wine.

Photo of mikesgroove
4.47/5  rDev +9%
look: 4 | smell: 4.5 | taste: 4.5 | feel: 4.5 | overall: 4.5

bright, golden, amber color right out of the gate. A very nice, and slightly hazy looking consistency to it, I did notice copious amounts of bubbles coming up through it, throughout the session.

The aroma was very nice and tart. Huge aromas of Brett coming off of this immediately, turning the whole experience over to the funk that was in the glass, very nice to see. lots of grapes and geapeskins with a nice sour and fruit like finish that was draped in dry oak like taste. deep, resonant sour taste, seems to be a little more tame that what I was expecting, nice tones of wood raveled in throughout as well. Really well blended, the aging is really coming into play here now. Very dry finish with the long lingering taste of sour Brett that as time fades,

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

Poured from the bottle at The Bruery's -bal tasting. Amberish blond in color, looks a bit like chardonnay. Pours from the top of the bottle had good clarity. Carbonation is moderate, creating a small white head that disappears completely after a while.

Musty vinous aroma. Plenty of funk and fruit backed by a mild lactic acidity, a bit sharp and cheesy. Nice interplay between the fruit and bacteria.

Very fruity on the tongue. Lactic sourness meets bright fruity white wine. Lot of musty, cheesy character from the brett and lacto. Light body, light to moderate carbonation; plenty bubbly for the style. The finish is clean with a mild lactic sourness that lingers.

Pretty nice stuff, though The Bruery is still a few steps behind the likes of Russian River and Lost Abbey with their sour beers.

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

Reviewed from notes.

A: Pours a clear tangerine/orange with a large bubbled thin white head which fades to the rim leaving trace lace behind. A quick swirl brings nothing back.

N: Grape skin and juice, oak, cotton candy, cheese, slightly musty funk.

T: Vinous, trace oak tannins, tart apples, peaches and pears and lemons.

M: Light body and carbonation. Tart with some tannins. Prickly pucker and sem-dry finish.

O: Not too wild in the funk department, just a nice tart vinous construct.

Photo of ChrisPro
4.01/5  rDev -2.2%
look: 3 | smell: 4.5 | taste: 4 | feel: 3.5 | overall: 4

Bottle thanks to route66pubs.

A - Pours a translucent straw yellow without a single bubble of head. Skins definitely not used.

S - A little funk and definitely some grapes on the nose. Kind of pungent but not overpowering. Nice musty barnyard to it that sort of accentuates the fruit.

T - A great tartness with some funk and a pretty sweet finish.

M - no carbonation, but also no heat. Pretty slick and medium body.

O - Quite a drinkable beer and something I'd be glad to have again, but wouldn't go out of my way. I really think this needs more than the 6 months.

Photo of GbVDave
4.19/5  rDev +2.2%
look: 3.5 | smell: 4.5 | taste: 4 | feel: 4 | overall: 4.5

Poured from a 750ml bottle into a White Birch flute. Extra special thanks to errantnight for hooking me up with this from our latest volley!

A: Decent "pfffft" sound when the cap was pried off. Pours a rather still and lifeless looking apricot/peach nectar color. Nice haze. A weak bubbly head quickly pops up and just as quickly dies off leaving no collar, no skim, and no lace. Second pour was darker and with some suspended sediment.

S: At first, I was greeted with a bit of vinegar before it turned decidedly fruity and oaky. Dry oaky tannins with sour grapes, tart green apple, and lemon. As it came up to temp, I picked up tart bing cherry, then sweet black cherry, and then a bit of slightly sweet malt. With my second pour, I swirled in all the sediment and was rewarded with aromas of fresh strawberry and blueberry.

T: Very much like the smell with even more emphasis on the oak and tart fruit flavors. Vinegar in the finish gradually leads to some toasted malt. After pouring in the sediment with my second glass I picked up the aforementioned strawberry and blueberry as well as some black currants.

M: Relatively smooth with some very nice oaky astringency. The acidity is there but never too in your face. Rather it's balanced by the fruit/berry/malt sweetness and dry oak.

D: This was a very drinkable AWA that covered the bases. Sour, dry, and sweet. Very nice.

Photo of Thorpe429
3.92/5  rDev -4.4%
look: 3 | smell: 3.5 | taste: 4 | feel: 4 | overall: 4.5

Bottle shared by bmanning. Served in a tulip.

A ridiculously-hard pour yields not even a quarter-inch of head. Only a few bubbles sitting on top and these quickly fade away. After there, there is a very, very thin collar. The nose is really quite vinous and reminds me a lot of fresh Cuvee de Castleton. There is a bit of grapes along with some moderate lactic sourness. A slight vinegar presence is there as well. Slight pucker factor leads into the taste, though it's not incredibly sour. It definitely needs some time to dry out and hopefully add a bit of funk to complicate things. At the same time, this definitely gets better as it warms up and I enjoyed the last sip of the glass much more so than the first.

Photo of AgentZero
4.12/5  rDev +0.5%
look: 3.5 | smell: 4 | taste: 4.5 | feel: 3.5 | overall: 4

A - Orange colored beer that pours fairly opaque. Small head on it, that barely stuck around to be noticed.

S - Nice and tart with a bit of oak and citrus. Slightly bretty, nice grape presence that does remind me of a pinot noir.

T - Surprisingly good, one of the better Bruery beers I've had to date. Appropriate tart notes with some brett, good grape taste that gets sour. Tastes a little juicy.

M - Juicy like mouthfeel that ends a little bit watery. Kind of reminds me of Yellow Bus in that sense. Slightly sugary, medium bodied.

D - Very good sour from the Bruery that I enjoyed having and would have again. Surpring amount of ABV is not detected upon consumption.

Photo of AleWatcher
4.4/5  rDev +7.3%
look: 4 | smell: 4 | taste: 4.5 | feel: 4 | overall: 5

So this was a huge of mine after sampling it at a tasting shortly after the beer was released... I really wanted to give it a review because I remember loving this beer the first time around...
Anyway, oreo or drewba brought this out at a tasting so I made sure to pull my phone out!

Reviewed from notes dictated into voice notes on my iphone.

My pour was towards the end of the bottle, so I got a little murky cloudiness in my glass. Looking at the other pours (and being offered whiffs and tastes as well) they are nice and clear and remind me of a golden ale. Some small bubbles create a thin white collar around the glass. Speaking of thin, the legs on this are atrophied-- virtually nonexistent.

The nose is bright fresh citrus fruit with acidic white grape like a German Reisling. I really like this beer. It tastes great-- there's enough going on to keep every sip interesting, but nothing stands out as being overly powerful. It is well-balanced and all the flavors blend together like a CSN+Y harmony.

The body itself is a lot like a white wine: low carbonation, very acidic, good sourness, and a tartness that makes me pull my cheeks in a bit. I like it a lot.

Overall-- very very very fucking tasting beer. I'm still looking to trade for a few of these!

Photo of sweemzander
4.12/5  rDev +0.5%
look: 3.5 | smell: 4 | taste: 4 | feel: 4.5 | overall: 4.5

750mL bottle poured into a stemmed glass. Got this awhile in a trade and I cannot remember from whom; Thank you whoever it was!

(A)- Pours an orange color. Produced some white bubbles and froth. Bits of lacing.

(S)- A nice bone dry acidic earthiness. Bits of white grape and plenty of oak; some funk in the wood.

(T)- Very similar to the smell. Dry, but with a zesty blush-like grape component. Pinot Noir? Tastes more like a white grape to me. Nice and sour/acidic. Crisp. Far less funk than the smell; rather clean on the finish actually.

(M)- A nice carbonation level. A nice balance too. Definitely a cleaner take, yet has a vibrant feel to it at the same time.

(D)- I like this one. Nicely sour and crisp. A great thirst quencher on this hot day. Nice job.

Photo of womencantsail
3.8/5  rDev -7.3%
look: 4 | smell: 4 | taste: 3.5 | feel: 4 | overall: 4

From the bottle at the Bruery -bal tasting

A: The pour is a slightly hazed golden amber color with a finger or so worth of white head.

S: A nice lactic tartness to this one, but not super powerful. Definitely a strong grape presence to the beer with a soft, subtle oak character. The grapes provide a bit of a sweetness that I wasn't quite expecting.

T: Like the nose, there was more sweetness than I expected, especially when cold. Sort of simple in terms of the flavor with a mild to moderate acidity and not too much overtly oaky flavor. A slight cheese flavor at times, too.

M: The body is medium with a smooth, soft carbonation to it.

D: Why can't these guys just leave Cuvee Jeune as it was? I had pretty high expectations for this and it didn't quite meet them.

Photo of portia99
3.97/5  rDev -3.2%
look: 3.5 | smell: 4 | taste: 4 | feel: 4 | overall: 4

750ml bottle courtesy of hoppymcgee - thanks Greg! Poured into a Bruery tulip.

A - Pours a marginally pale copper orange color with excellent clarity. Very fizzy with soda like carbonation on the pour. No head even pretends to make an attempt to form on top of the beer...no collar, no lacing.

S - Light aroma, fairly tart, quite white wine like, grapey, perhaps some green apples, mildly woody.

T - Again this is quite winey. Lots of grape flavors, apples, mid-level tartness, fruity, white wine, a bit of wood. This would be a very approachable beer for a wine drinker. A bit vinegary, extremely mild malty graininess.

M - Thin, apple juice like in feel. Carbonation is rather low, mildly fizzy on the tongue, but thats about it. Tart, vinegary and very much reminiscient of wine.

O - A rather good wild ale. A bit of a different take on things. Have wine drinking friends that don't like beer?...this would be a good one to introduce them. Extremely similar flavor profiles with the grapey fruit flavors, overall acidity, crisp and rather dry.

Photo of PlinyTheKid
3.77/5  rDev -8%
look: 3.5 | smell: 4 | taste: 3.5 | feel: 4 | overall: 4

A: Milky, cloudy, golden yellow. Little to no head.

S: Upon opening the bottle, a strong, grape smell trapped within the bottle bursted out. Overpowering essence of sour grapes and funk.

T: Strong tastes of tartness and funk upon the first sip. A little bit of sweetness from it, but pretty much mostly a tart flavour.
The tartness will slowly go away upon aging, and I feel as though the funk will mask most of the sweetness.

M: Contains very little carbonation, some sourness wrapping around the palate, but nothing too overwhelming.

D: Very drinkable at the moment from the bottle. It is very smooth, and has a really nice flavour. For a grape based beer, this is definitely a must-try.

Photo of HuskyinPDX
4.11/5  rDev +0.2%
look: 3.75 | smell: 4 | taste: 4.25 | feel: 3.75 | overall: 4.25

Bottle opened on 10.4.13

A - Pours a clear light orange with a fizzy off-white head that is gone instantly.

S - Lots of pinot and wine barrel.

T - Tart pinot, oaky barrel, dry finish.

D - Lower carbonation with a light body.

O - Heavy on the pinot and oak barrel. More Grape then malt.

Photo of DefenCorps
3.91/5  rDev -4.6%
look: 3 | smell: 4.5 | taste: 4 | feel: 3.5 | overall: 3.5

Bottle that I received in a trade with womencantsail. Thanks, Andy!

When I crack the bottle, I'm greeted with a faint hiss. Poured into my Duvel tulip, Pinotlambicus sits a clear, cuprous amber with a dense, choppy, off-white head that falls off to a ring rather quickly. The nose really caught me off guard. I was expecting something good, but this an unabashed joy to smell. Reminiscent of a fresh Cuvee de Castleton in some respects, there's a blend of honeydew melon, a leathery Brett character, a mildly spicy white pepper note and quite a prominent juicy grape character. A moderate funk is present, with wet hay and some cheese. Moderate tannin character is noticeable on the nose, and there is quite a bit of lactic sourness that provides a refreshing backbone to the nose. Now, I'm not sure I could pick these out as pinot noir grapes here, as the sour base beer really does hide some of the big, fruity, jammy character that I've come to find in a lot of CA pinot noirs. In any case, this is a fantastic smelling beer.

The palate opens pretty massively tart, almost surprisingly so, with a blend of mildly yogurty lactic acid and fruity sourness, moderately mineraly in nature. The mid-palate has flavors of melon, grapes and a little honey. As it warms up, the sourness grows increasingly aggressive, but there is no real acetone character, or even acetic acid, maybe it's remnants from the fruit addition? Definitely tannic, moderately tartaric in flavor and sourness, this beer does dry out on the finish, leaving a tannic bite. Again, as it warms up, the oak character does come through, with just a little vanilla and lingering flavors of oak. Medium-light in body with soft carbonation, this beer is quite excellent, though the sourness will make an entire bottle a bit difficult to finish, especially with the ABV. Not as refined as Temptation or Cuvee de Castleton, but still a very worthy effort. I'd be curious to see where the sourness goes from here, 'cos any more and it could start getting unpleasant.

Ultimately, the marriage of the robust pinot noir grape with a pale sour base works surprisingly well, mostly due to the strong sourness of the base beer. I'd love to try to see something on the lighter end of spectrum, maybe with a NZ Sauvignon Blanc? Maybe it's time I got back to brewing.

Photo of scottfrie
3.97/5  rDev -3.2%
look: 3.5 | smell: 4 | taste: 4 | feel: 4 | overall: 4

Thanks for opening up this one, Mike. Served into a snifter. Original bottling.

A: Pours a hazy apricot color with nothing but a short lived fizzy white collar. No head, no lace.
S: This beer definitely smells vinous and tart, and I get a touch of lemon.
T: Light tartness, good vinous flavor of red grapes, oak and gritty tannins. There is a bit of citrus and peach in the aftertaste.
M: Thicker body than most with a good chew to the mouthfeel. Carbonation is low and the finish is dry and full of gritty tannins.
O: Not being too tart made this a great beer to sip while sitting in the sun on the patio. Thanks again, Mike.

Photo of Sideswipe
4.42/5  rDev +7.8%
look: 4 | smell: 4.5 | taste: 4.5 | feel: 4 | overall: 4.5

At the Bruery barrel tasting

Clear golden color wih minimal head. No lacing. Sour grapes and a bit of oak in the nose. Tart grapes, mild funk and wood flavors dominate. Great wine characteristics. There's a nice lingering tartness in the finish. Medium body with very little carbonation. Very tasty. I really like the super tart, winey qualities. Wish they'd bottle this again. Recommended.

Photo of HopHead84
4/5  rDev -2.4%
look: 4 | smell: 4 | taste: 4 | feel: 4 | overall: 4

Review #800

11/20/10

Poured from a bottle at the third session of The Bruery's 2010 Reserve Society -Bal Tasting.

A: Golden with good clarity and a small bubbly cap.

S: Nice aroma. Reminds me of a cross between a lambic and a white wine. I detect notes of white grapes, redolent of Chardonnay. Musty barnyard, cheese, and oak.

T: Lightly tart and moderately sour in a lactic sort of way. Acidity is low. The flavor displays more oak than the aroma, and the taste is of musty white grapes with barnyard notes. The finish is tannic and drying.

M: Low carbonation with tannins and some acidity.

Overall: This was quite good, and a nice change of pace from the big Barrel Aged beers at the event. I liked this, but I think I preferred Cuvee Jeune

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Vitis Series: Pinotlambicus from The Bruery
91 out of 100 based on 126 ratings.