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Half Acre / Struise / Pipeworks Small Animal Big Machine - Half Acre Beer Company

Not Rated.
Half Acre / Struise / Pipeworks Small Animal Big MachineHalf Acre / Struise / Pipeworks Small Animal Big Machine

Displayed for educational use only; do not reuse.
BA SCORE
82
good

96 Ratings
THE BROS
-
no score

(send 'em beer!)
Ratings: 96
Reviews: 53
rAvg: 3.61
pDev: 19.11%
Wants: 24
Gots: 30 | FT: 0
Brewed by:
Half Acre Beer Company visit their website
Illinois, United States

Style | ABV
Fruit / Vegetable Beer |  8.50% ABV

Availability: Limited (brewed once)

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

A collaboration beer with Pipeworks and De Struise.

Red Belgian ale fermented with red currants and cherries. Brewed using traditional sour mash methods.

(Beer added by: emerge077 on 06-08-2011)
Beer: Ratings & Reviews
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Ratings: 96 | Reviews: 53 | Display Reviews Only:
Photo of spycow
3/5  rDev -16.9%

Photo of UCLABrewN84
3.45/5  rDev -4.4%
look: 3.5 | smell: 3.5 | taste: 3.5 | feel: 3 | overall: 3.5

Bottle shared at FosterJM's birthday celebration.

Pours a murky brown with a dark khaki head that settles to a film on top of the beer. Small dots of lace form around the glass on the drink down. Smell is sour and tart with some fruity and spice aromas. Taste is the same with an emphasis on dark fruit flavors. This beer has a super high level of carbonation with an extremely prickly mouthfeel. Overall, this is a pretty good beer but the carbonation level is much too high.

Photo of zestar
3.5/5  rDev -3%

Photo of Thorpe429
3.08/5  rDev -14.7%
look: 4.5 | smell: 3 | taste: 3 | feel: 3 | overall: 3

Bottle courtesy of Geist. Served in a snifter.

Pours a moderately dark brown with a really nice off white head and loads of lacing on the way down. Good cap throughout. The nose has some cherry and dark fruits. A bit of oxidation in the nose. The flavor corresponds with all of this and adds a bit of dark malt. Medium body with plenty of fruit; semi dry finish. Okay.

Photo of nmann08
3/5  rDev -16.9%

Photo of GRG1313
3.5/5  rDev -3%

Photo of mikesgroove
4.25/5  rDev +17.7%
look: 4.5 | smell: 4 | taste: 4.5 | feel: 4 | overall: 4

Slightly darker then your normal ale. Lots of visible carbonation was evident from the start, chains of bubbles rippling up from the bottom of the glass. Lots of haze, literally made this opaque. Nice one inch thick white head receeded rather quicky leaving behind a thin film on top of the glass and a nice amount of lace drooping down the sides.

The smell was strong, and very fruity. Large hint of raspberry was readily apparent from the start. A very sugary aroma aroma was present as was a slight hint of grain in the back, slight hoppiness was present in the finsh, quite dry actually. Very smooth feel, great carbonation, led to that nice silky, bubbly light feeling. Overall the flavors were very very intense, and the fruit and hop flavors made the profile really jump out at you, and made it actually rather ejjoyable as the session wore on.

Photo of emerge077
4.18/5  rDev +15.8%
look: 4.5 | smell: 4 | taste: 4 | feel: 4.5 | overall: 4.5

Served cool at 50º, it makes a huge difference.

Color looks to be a very dark rusty brown, nearly black, but when held to the light it glows a perfect crimson. Initial fingers width of light tan foam that recedes to a skim after a few minutes. The surface of the foam has a fine, creamy texture.

Belgian yeast aroma, reminiscent of a dark trappist with banana, clove, and brown sugar.

Low level natural cherry tartness, well integrated, fruit dominates with some earthy yeast and light toasty malt behind it. Something vaguely roasty or possibly woody in the middle. Low level phenolic spice, clove and cherry are melded well together, leaving a residual dry peppery spice. Full bodied, supple feel, with a tasty dark cherry flavor that thankfully isn't sweet. I enjoyed it more and more as it came up to room temperature.

SABM is a unique hybrid style, drawing inspiration from Belgian ales like Kasteel Rouge and Cuvée Van De Keizer. Cheers to Half Acre, Pipeworks, and De Struise on the successful collaboration.

Photo of TMoney2591
3.2/5  rDev -11.4%
look: 4 | smell: 3.5 | taste: 3 | feel: 3.5 | overall: 3

Served in a Lancaster shaker pint glass.

Not sure how to even approach this one, so just jumping in. It pours a mostly clear amber-garnet (heavy on the latter) topped by a finger of lightly dirty tan foam. The nose comprises maple syrup, light black grapes, light red apple, toffee, light cocoa, and light lacto. The taste holds notes of brown sugar, black cherry, raspberry, cocoa, and tart red grapes. Unfortunately, none of these flavors, nor the combination, really pops: they just kinda meld into one another. The body is a straight medium, with a very light moderate carbonation and a kinda sticky finish. Overall, not too bad a beer, but one that just seems meek. No other word really works here. (For the sake of comparison, the closest I can come by is Enigma from New Glarus. Take that and water it down a bit, and you'll have something akin to SABM.)

Photo of JAHMUR
4/5  rDev +10.8%

Photo of MasterSki
3.15/5  rDev -12.7%
look: 4 | smell: 3 | taste: 3 | feel: 4 | overall: 3

THIS PRODUCT IS NOW A BOTTLE-BOMB. HANDLE WITH CARE!

Thanks to Chris (spycow) and Alison for picking this up while I was out of town. Served in a Russian River tulip.

A - A late-rising tan foam settles to a thin ring, with some hazy swathes and minimal lacework. Transparent dark orange-red-brown body.

S - Red licorice, cherries, spicy phenolic yeast, some fruity spirit alcohol character (brandy? grappa?). Alcohol presences grows as it warms up, along with the sour mash characteristics.

T - Taste is actually a bit understated. The sour mash contributes a malt character that is similar to the one I tasted in Sour Plead the 5th. Doughy malts, some buttery toffee, and light tart cherries. Finish is tart currants, but somewhat unexpected and not totally integrated all that well. Alcohol is less present than the aroma.

M - Pleasant carbonation tingle, smooth pleasant texture, medium body, and a little bit of alcohol warmth in the finish. Some gritty tannic character from the fruit.

D - I really wanted to like this beer. I think all the different collaborators are great people, and all of them have made some great beers too. Unfortunately I thought this was a boozy, jumbled mess. Seemed higher in alcohol than the listed 8.5%, which is unexpected considering most of Urbain's beers have masterfully hidden alcohol. It's certain complex and unique, but in this case too many cooks may have spoiled the broth. Perhaps it is better in the bottles. I struggled through my one glass, and had no interested in refilling it.

Photo of drabmuh
3.55/5  rDev -1.7%
look: 4.5 | smell: 3.5 | taste: 3.5 | feel: 3.5 | overall: 3.5

Bottle shared by the other Matt, beer served in a snifter, Beer is brown and hazy with a thin tan head, low retention, the bottle artwork is sort of amazing really. No lacing.

Aroma is sweet, dark fruit, nice malt presence, smells nice.

Beer is a bit of a letdown, thin body, sweet on the finish, beer is just OK, mild dark fruits, prunes perhaps, an interesting beer but nothing too special. I doubt I'll have it again.

Photo of mdfb79
3.48/5  rDev -3.6%
look: 4 | smell: 3.5 | taste: 3.5 | feel: 4 | overall: 3

From 11/27/11 notes. Big thanks to the Chicago Group for sending this in the Group BIF. Poured from a 22 oz. bottle into a tulip.

a - Pours a dark brown color with two inches of off white head and moderate carbonation evident. Lots of lacing on the glass.

s - Smells of sour cherries, currants, roasted malts, light spices. An interesting mix here, and the sour cherries dominate, which I kind of enjoy.

t - Tastes of sour cherries, currants, roasted malts. Less sour than the nose and more roasted malts, a slight step down for me.

m - Medium body and moderate carbonation.

o - Overall an interesting beer. I enjoyed the sour cherries in the nose, but would have liked more in the taste. Wouldn't seek it out again, and not Half Acre or De Struisse's best work.

Photo of imperialking
4/5  rDev +10.8%

Photo of corby112
3.3/5  rDev -8.6%
look: 4 | smell: 3.5 | taste: 3 | feel: 3.5 | overall: 3.5

Thanks to lurchingbeast for sending this in a recent trade.

Pours a hazy dark ruby color with mahogany edges and a 1.5 finger light beige head.  Good retention slow fading into a lasting ring.  Spotty lace left behind.

Interesting aroma with hints of roasted dark malt and vinous dark fruit.  Slightly somkey and chalky with hints of cocoa and caramel followed by a bunch of sweet fruit notes.  Hints of grape, cherry,  plum and dark berries.

Medium bodied with some tight carb up front and some dry roasted malt that lingers into a dry finish while being countered by the sweeter dark fruit notes.  Toasty with hints of cocoa, caramel and roasted coffee countered by hints of grape, dark cherry, plum and other dark berries.  Slightly chalky with a dry finish.  Lots of boozy sweetness.

Photo of mothman
2.8/5  rDev -22.4%
look: 3 | smell: 3 | taste: 3 | feel: 2 | overall: 2.5

Pours a beige head. Color is a caramel brown.

Aroma: Berries and cocoa. Some roasted malts. I have never had a carrot beer before, but knowing they are in here allows me to pick them out.

Taste: Cranberries, cherries, and carrots. Then a touch of chocolate malts. So many berries.

Mouthfeel: Fizzy. Light bodied with a high amount of carbonation. Ends roasted.

Overall, a unique beer with lots of berries. Too much carbonation as well. It's okay, but I don't want a lot of it.

Photo of Gonzoillini
3.25/5  rDev -10%

Photo of Huhzubendah
3.53/5  rDev -2.2%
look: 4 | smell: 3.5 | taste: 3.5 | feel: 3.5 | overall: 3.5

Bonus points for the imaginative and creative artwork on the label. The beer is hazy and chestnut brown in color with a ginormous tan head that leaves ample lacing on the glass. A bit over-carbonated.

Sweet fruit dominates the aroma. Currants followed by berries.

The flavor is lightly tannic, offering some oak character and a healthy serving of currants. Definitely more sweet than tart / sour. Alcohol presence is mild. A few ounces is plenty. This was fun to try, but not a big hit among the guys in the tasting group.

Photo of HuskyinPDX
2.55/5  rDev -29.4%
look: 3 | smell: 2.5 | taste: 2 | feel: 4 | overall: 3

22oz bottle poured into a pint glass.

A - Pours a medium brown with an explosive medium tan head that fades quickly. It leaves globs of lacing on the glass.

S - Barley and malty. Not much, but some spices.

T - Sweet barley, fruity, spices, and a metallic aftertaste.

D - High carbonation, light body.

O - Sweet, Light, refreshing, but after taste is not pleasant.

Photo of jrallen34
2.6/5  rDev -28%
look: 3.5 | smell: 2 | taste: 2.5 | feel: 3 | overall: 3

Thanks to Chris for this growler... pours a dark cola, decent head... aroma is terrible its all currants, pepper and generic chemical caramel... the taste isn’t as strong as the nose or it wouldn’t be drinkable, some cherries show, but the finish is terrible... tough to drink

Photo of Duff27
3/5  rDev -16.9%

Photo of AgentZero
2.85/5  rDev -21.1%
look: 3 | smell: 2.5 | taste: 3 | feel: 3.5 | overall: 2.5

Thanks to Chris aka spycow for sharing this with Alex and I at our BRUINS WIN! (and I don't care) get together.

A - Pours a brownish red color that ambers a little on the edges. Not much head on it and no stick on the sides.

S - Couldn't put my finger on it at first, but MasterSki is right, this smells like strawberry twizzlers. I'm not a big fan of twizzlers, particularly in my beer. Smells a bit harsh, with some cocoa and cherries and other weird fruit odors.

T - You can taste the currants, I think, it's some odd fruit. It's actually quite boozy, tastes like a hard mixed drink and has a spirit-alcohol taste. Some harsh phenolic yeast and a really bad finish. As it warmed up, it smelled worse, and started to taste a little better with the cocoa coming out, but the finish still killed it. Only reason I gave it a 3 instead of a 2 was that it's quite complex, although not real good.

M - Mouthfeel is actually fine, smooth, syrupy, somewhat active carbonation.

O - This beer is exceptionally hard to get down. I had one small glass and was done. I am horribly disappointed, and really had high hopes for this beer. It seems it's getting the Hellshire treatment from locals, or my tastebuds are just different from most other peoples'.

Photo of Jwale73
3.18/5  rDev -11.9%
look: 3.5 | smell: 4 | taste: 3 | feel: 2.5 | overall: 3

Thanks to jedwards for sharing this. Pours a murky mahogany with a thin, cream-colored skim. Nose expresses grape, bubblegum, yeast and a sour mash quality. Taste is tart, grapey and vinegary. Cherries come out as the brew warms, but the overall taste reminds me of cough medicine. Tough to get a read on other aspects of the mouthfeel due to the extremely gassy carbonation levels. There's also a slight acidity. This was a tough brew to drink even split amongst six. This collaboration was definitely not a winner in my book.

Photo of cpetrone84
1.9/5  rDev -47.4%
look: 2 | smell: 2 | taste: 2 | feel: 2 | overall: 1.5

pour is murky dark brown with tan head. Nose is overly sweet with a messy malt. Plums, cherries, tobacco, peppery spice, lightly smoky meat. Taste is less smoky, more sweet, with a strange twang in the finish. Plums, cherries, faint leather, faint peppery spice, fairly dry finish, moderate carbonation and oily palate.

Photo of FosterJM
3.88/5  rDev +7.5%
look: 3.5 | smell: 3.5 | taste: 4 | feel: 4 | overall: 4

631st Review on BA
Bottle to small snifter
22oz

Thanks to Teamizm for this one.

App- A light reddish/brown with a nice one finger head that dissapates quickly and leaves just a touch of cling in the glass.

Smell- When you stick your nose in this beer your likely to smell medicine. Some people like that some people don't. This was more of a grape/cherry robitusin smell for me.

Taste- Much better on the tastes than on the nose with a cherry note taking over and the beer smoothing out to where you get a balanced fruit/malt/ and small hop note. This was def. fruit forward but still tasty.

Mouth- Medium bodied and almost a high carb but retaining a medium like note to it.

Drink- I was anxious to try this one and had my doubts, but it was quite tasty and flavorful. I will say its not for everyone and it needs to be probably drinken slowly to allow more flavors to develop.

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Half Acre / Struise / Pipeworks Small Animal Big Machine from Half Acre Beer Company
82 out of 100 based on 96 ratings.