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Cuir - The Bruery

Not Rated.
CuirCuir

Displayed for educational use only; do not reuse.
BA SCORE
92
outstanding

532 Ratings
THE BROS
-
no score

(send 'em beer!)
Ratings: 532
Reviews: 188
rAvg: 4.15
pDev: 12.05%
Wants: 75
Gots: 428 | FT: 26
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.

Cuir is our third anniversary ale. It is the same recipe as Papier, but again created using the Solera method. Each year we will continue to blend old barrels of anniversary ale with a new batch of the same beer, adding an additional layer of complexity that will grow over time as we continue to age and blend with each anniversary, creating an older average age to the ale.

(Beer added by: Halcyondays on 05-07-2011)
Beer: Ratings & Reviews
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Ratings: 532 | Reviews: 188 | Display Reviews Only:
Photo of afsdan
4.5/5  rDev +8.4%

afsdan, Apr 04, 2014
Photo of greenspointexas
4/5  rDev -3.6%

greenspointexas, Mar 23, 2014
Photo of MJsGhost
4.25/5  rDev +2.4%

MJsGhost, Mar 14, 2014
Photo of KVNBGRY
4.75/5  rDev +14.5%

KVNBGRY, Mar 10, 2014
Photo of Koogles21
2/5  rDev -51.8%

Koogles21, Mar 10, 2014
Photo of themind
4.5/5  rDev +8.4%

themind, Mar 10, 2014
Photo of facesnorth
3.75/5  rDev -9.6%

facesnorth, Mar 10, 2014
Photo of biegaman
4.18/5  rDev +0.7%
look: 4.5 | smell: 4.25 | taste: 4 | feel: 4.5 | overall: 4.25

"Cuir" is the French word for leather and, indeed, this Old Ale looks slightly worn but still tough; despite a very murky complexion a beautiful, glistening amber colour persists. Even its head is firm and durable - an incredibly impressive feat given its makeup (blended and barrel-aged), age (2 years), and strength (a whopping 14.5%).

The Bruery's anniversary ales (such as this one) are made using the Solera method, which is a process of retaining some liquid from every batch or vintage and blending it into the next one. Over the years, the average age of the product - and, by association, its complexity and uniqueness - is gradually increased.

For those keeping count, Cuir is the third release made in this fashion and, as result, certainly gives us lots to ponder over. The aroma alone is a dizzying (somewhat literally given the alcohol) array of candied fruits, cherries, dark toffee, nut brittle, and vinous esters of a very sherry-like nature.

The taste doesn't quite live up to the excitement stirred up by the bouquet but does introduce a slight tartness in the form of a prominent choke cherry flavour. The burnt sugar and dark fruit profile continues but truthfully isn't as tasty as it sounds. Still, if there were scores for uniqueness and intensity, this would certainly earn the highest marks in those categories.

There are some techniques in the brewing process (i.e., decoction mash) that can be quite demanding. Tossing your beer in a bourbon barrel, however, is incredibly easy relative to how much complexity it affords; the effort-to-pay out ratio is huge. It makes for a beer that's strong but sublime. This one shows off oaky, slightly oxidated nuances of vanilla and sherry.

Cuir is a beer of technical virtuosity and inspired brilliance. I not only think the 'solera anniversary' offerings is a neat project, I know from trying a few that it makes for notably interesting and special ales as well. These beers come with a hefty price tag but they're worth it (and also worthy of a spot in the cellar next to your prized Bordeaux or vintage Champagne).

biegaman, Feb 22, 2014
Photo of JMBSH
4.25/5  rDev +2.4%

JMBSH, Feb 22, 2014
Photo of FrankHammer
4.5/5  rDev +8.4%

FrankHammer, Feb 21, 2014
Photo of Chuggernaut00
5/5  rDev +20.5%

Chuggernaut00, Feb 08, 2014
Photo of yourefragile
4/5  rDev -3.6%

yourefragile, Feb 04, 2014
Photo of Phobicsquirrel
4.25/5  rDev +2.4%

Phobicsquirrel, Feb 02, 2014
Photo of ricecracker420
4.5/5  rDev +8.4%

ricecracker420, Jan 31, 2014
Photo of POTABLE83
3.75/5  rDev -9.6%

POTABLE83, Jan 29, 2014
Photo of nootch23
4.25/5  rDev +2.4%

nootch23, Jan 27, 2014
Photo of thebigredone
4/5  rDev -3.6%

thebigredone, Jan 26, 2014
Photo of artoolemomo
4.28/5  rDev +3.1%
look: 4 | smell: 4 | taste: 4.5 | feel: 4 | overall: 4.25

Appearance- Received with very little head which obviously can't have much retention. The head is a light beige while the body is a mix of burgundy and chestnut brown that appears as a dark amber/maroon when held up to the light.

Nose- Very mild. Some light peach, mango perhaps, a hint of mustiness. Even leather. Swirling doesn't reveal much except a certain creaminess. Peach is almost apricot or pear. I'm sure this reveals nothing about the actual profile but it's interesting in its subtlety nonetheless.

Taste- The nose is somewhat of an indication of what this beer is going to be like- starts off with subtle fruit esters that pretty much pinpoint the fruit flavors I enjoy- peach, apricot, and pear. But pear seems to be at the forefront which is almost a godsend for me. Even the pear ciders and pear brandies I've had seem to pale in regard to the actual but this expresses the delightful sublimity of that fruit. What's more is that I wasn't expecting this flavor profile. Even more surprising is that this beer expresses absolutely no booze. Some light cherry, a continued bit of peach, but this seems pear dominated. Slight notes of woodiness but this doesn't match the given description at all and I don't care. This beer isn't all that complex but the delicacy is amazing. Such great balance and integration with a flavor note that I find irresistible. Some hints of spice on the finish. Pepper, cinnamon, coriander. The woodiness is almost pine, suggestions of cedar. It's just enough of a contrasting note to prevent this beer from devolving into pure decadence. Easily a great beer. Too bad that this is probably the only time I will ever drink it, but what can you do? As it opens, slight notions of the real heat start to appear but not as much as it should.

Mouthfeel- Medium bodied with very heavy notes of syrup. It drinks light juice and has some creaminess. Light carbonation. A tad bit of zing. Great overall structure.

Drinkability- It's a good thing this beer costs so much- it's that good. At points, it's not even recognizable as a beer. Slight tangy notes and tiny indications of heat separate it from a blend of pear/apricot/peach juice but not by much. 9 bucks is the highest price I've ever paid for so small a pour but I understand. Not only are these beers 30 bucks a 750mL but this beer also has some age on it. To simplify: it's worth it.

Overall- Great beer- I'm glad that I saved the best for last. I wasn't sure when I saw the rather slight rating of about 4.2 for a Bruery Anniversary beer but now I know it's partially because of the flavor profile. My favored tastes are not others but finally, a beer hits my really specific favorites. Plus it'll get you really drunk. How can you lose? A must try- as in, it's a must if you come across it. When will you get another chance?

artoolemomo, Jan 25, 2014
Photo of simoen
4.25/5  rDev +2.4%

simoen, Jan 21, 2014
Photo of tom10101
4/5  rDev -3.6%

tom10101, Jan 20, 2014
Photo of brother_kenneth
4/5  rDev -3.6%

brother_kenneth, Jan 19, 2014
Photo of Beeranator
4.5/5  rDev +8.4%

Beeranator, Jan 18, 2014
Photo of bauermj
4/5  rDev -3.6%

bauermj, Jan 17, 2014
Photo of mattmarka1
4/5  rDev -3.6%

mattmarka1, Jan 13, 2014
Photo of draheim
4.29/5  rDev +3.4%
look: 4.5 | smell: 4.5 | taste: 4.25 | feel: 4 | overall: 4.25

750mL (bottle 02505) into a snifter. Pours a crystal-clear ruby mahogany w/ a surprisingly big khaki head that settles to a velvety film. Moderate carbonation.

Aroma is fruity and sweet. Brown sugar, black cherries, molasses, rum-soaked pipe tobacco, caramel, vanilla.

Taste follows nose. Rich and complex, sweet and syrupy; maybe just a touch too sweet. Lots of sugars evident. Brown sugar, molasses, candied yams, raisins, caramel, toffee, bing cherries, pipe tobacco, and just a touch of alcohol heat... the list goes on, almost infinitely.

Mouthfeel is, not surprisingly, sticky and chewy, coating. Lingering aftertaste. The opposite of crisp and refreshing. A true sipper of a beer, dessert in a glass. This one will last the rest of the evening.

Overall about what I expected. I prefer Fruet, but this one is clearly in the same family. If it wasn't *so* sweet I'd probably give it higher marks, but it's still an interesting beer to carefully contemplate.

draheim, Jan 05, 2014
Cuir from The Bruery
92 out of 100 based on 532 ratings.