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Red Barn Ale - The Lost Abbey

Not Rated.
Red Barn AleRed Barn Ale

Educational use only; do not reuse.
very good

874 Ratings
no score

(send 'em beer!)
Ratings: 874
Reviews: 374
rAvg: 3.94
pDev: 10.91%
Wants: 65
Gots: 87 | FT: 2
Brewed by:
The Lost Abbey visit their website
California, United States

Style | ABV
Saison / Farmhouse Ale |  6.70% ABV

Availability: Year-round

Notes & Commercial Description:
Beer added by: scottoale on 08-23-2006

This Farmhouse Ale traces its roots to the small rustic breweries of Southern Belgium. The word Saison comes to us from the French language and it means Season. Lightly spiced with Organic Ginger, Orange Peels, Black Pepper and Grains of Paradise, this brew promises to quench your thirst on the hottest Southern California days or wherever your travels may take you.
Beer: Ratings & Reviews
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Ratings: 874 | Reviews: 374 | Display Reviews Only:
Photo of sinstaineddemon
4.17/5  rDev +5.8%
look: 3.5 | smell: 4 | taste: 4.5 | feel: 4 | overall: 4

A - this saison is a dark, golden yellow with a finger of tan head and small amounts of carbonation

S - typical saison style aromas, starting with crisp estiness, a sharp fresh citrus, and distinct spciness, clove, coriander, and nutmeg

T - yeasty and funky, with some earthy/peat elements as well, contrasted against some ginger and the aforementions spices as well as some tart white grapes

M&D - a wonderful saison, one of the better saisons i have had, medium bodied with well blended and balanced flavors and aromas, a taste that begs you to try another to see if you got all the flavors

Photo of ThreeWiseMen
3.61/5  rDev -8.4%
look: 4.5 | smell: 3.5 | taste: 3.5 | feel: 4 | overall: 3.5

Poured into a Duvel tulip.

Appearance: Pours out pale and clear with a rapidly expanding head. Once settled, I can see bustling carbonation through the crystal clear, golden body. A big, soapy, white head sits on top and slowly decays to a clumpy cap, leaving tons of bubble bath-like lacing on the walls of the glass. Looks awesome!

Smell: Lemon zest, hay, and big-time coriander. Pretty tart on the whole, with good spiciness and light funk.

Taste: Very sweet and citrusy with a tart and funky zing in the finish. Lots of coriander! Some buttery aspects. Not nearly as much barnyard funk as I was hoping for. I was digging this beer at first, but now all I'm getting is coriander and orange zest. It tastes a lot like the first beer a I ever brewed, which was an over-spiced witbier.

Mouthfeel: Very soft and fluffy on the palate. Carbonation is very active, but far from harsh. Medium bodied with hints of alcohol in the finish.

Drinkability: Not as good as I had hoped. Some more depth and funkiness would have been really nice. A good beer, but I ended up giving away the last half of it in favor of something else.

Photo of corby112
3.55/5  rDev -9.9%
look: 4 | smell: 4 | taste: 3.5 | feel: 3.5 | overall: 3

Pours a cloudy dark golden orange color with ripe golden banana hues when held to a light source and a 1.5 finger foamy white head that quickly fades into a thin lasting ring. No lacing

Spicy earthy aroma with some peppery zest and lots of crisp light fruit notes. Hints of cherry, strawberry and cream and other estery light fruit notes. Some corriander, citrus grapefruit, bready yeast and slight alcohol.

Crisp medium body with a spicy peppery zest up front as well as some full bready yeast character. Crisp light fruit notes and a very prominent citrus presence, mostly orange and grapefruit. Also, there is some subtle lemon peel as well as some strawberry, peaches and cream. Slightly earthy with a bit of tart bretty funk. Their is a large emphasis on the grapefruit tartness and earthy funk. The more I drink the more it tastes like a beer version of grapefruit juice, which is very unpleasant. Slight alcohol warmth in the finish but overall the alcohol is decently masked. Dry tart grapefruit finish.

Photo of mhatters
4.3/5  rDev +9.1%
look: 4 | smell: 4 | taste: 4.5 | feel: 4 | overall: 4.5

On-tap at the South Philly Tap Room (man I LOVE this place)

Pours a golden color with a white billowy head.

Lots of spice in the nose, clove, coriander - then yeastyready, then citrus and light fruit. Impressive.

Citrus and spice, clean and beautiful. Bready and yeasty. Man - a great beer

Crisp, easy drinking with a dry finish. Carbonation is what I expected - apparent but not overbearing.

I drank a couple of these, loved them, drink this all day.

Photo of ColForbinBC
4.05/5  rDev +2.8%
look: 4 | smell: 4 | taste: 4 | feel: 4.5 | overall: 4

On-tap at the South Philly Tap Room, served in a pint glass

A hazy golden body with streams of bubbles pushing north to a foamy white cap that had receded to a thin layer by the time it reached my table.

Clove hit me at first hard. It took me a while to push through. Bready yeast, tangerine, hay, and pepper. Almost has a medicinal aroma.

Refreshing and light. Tangerines shine through a little more, with the clove quickly in tow. Grass, hay and a strong bready yeast round out the flavors.

Light bodied with carbonation right on for the style. Refreshing and crisp, with a dry, lightly bitter finish.

I found this to be one of the easier drinking saisons I have had. The alcohol was barely noticeable. I could easily polish off multiple 750's of this guy.

Photo of jrallen34
3.45/5  rDev -12.4%
look: 4 | smell: 4 | taste: 3 | feel: 3.5 | overall: 3.5

I drank this from the bottle into a chalice.

It pours a medium pale cloudy gold with a decent white head thats last about 30 seconds and pretty good lacing.

The aroma is very sweet, malts hit you right on the nose. The dominating smell is apricots with notes of orange, spice, and very very light hops.

The tatse is kind of a let down, but I'm not a big farmhouse fan in general. The sweet malts are too sweet, in a bad way. It is kind of bitter at the end, nothing special across the board.

It has a decent mouthfeel, very drinkable if I could get over the taste.

Photo of gpogo
4.03/5  rDev +2.3%
look: 4.5 | smell: 4 | taste: 4 | feel: 4 | overall: 4

A- Hazy golden. Beautiful fluffy white head that doesn't like to go away.

A- Belgian yeasty aroma.

T- Coriander, not a taste of alcohol. Sweet wheaty malt, yet it finishes semi-dry.

M- Moderate carbonation medium-light body. Very smooth.

D- Delicious. Not very horsey, but quite enjoyable.

Photo of Kadonny
4.23/5  rDev +7.4%
look: 4 | smell: 3.5 | taste: 4.5 | feel: 4.5 | overall: 4.5

Poured from a tap into a small tulip tasting glass at TJs in Paoli.

A: A hazy deep golden color with a two finger white head. Nice ring lacing.

S: Farmhouse funk? Yes. I got smells of a barn! Wet hay, grassy, spice and some sweet fruit.

T: Funk and spice start off with hints of pepper, grass and spice. The sweeter fruit of pear, apple and melon are quickly taken over by the grassy floral hops. Very funky and very dry. Finish is hops bitter and dry. A nice hoppy farmhouse. Very enjoyable.

M: Medium but enjoyable. Fuller than your average saison/farmhouse. Dry and clean on the finish. A slight hint of alcohol.

D: High, this was one great beer. Very drinkable and balanced with the hops that keep it in check and make it very balanced. Give me another!

Overall a very, very enjoyable but different farmhouse/saison with the nice hop bite. I really loved this beer and could drink it anytime. Easily one of my favorite in the style. Nice work Tomme, this one is a win!

Photo of koopa
3.95/5  rDev +0.3%
look: 4 | smell: 4 | taste: 4 | feel: 3.5 | overall: 4

Bottle purchased and consumed at the Toronado Bar in San Francisco.

Appearance: Pale gold hazy body with tan 2 finger head that shows some retention and lacing.

Smell: Floral qualities (lavendar especially) combine with lemon zest, ginger, clove, and musty notes.

Taste: A bit disjointed but fairly enjoyable combination of peach, ginger, and white peppercorn.

Mouthfeel: Lots of carbonation despite the medium/thick body.

Drinkability: Not bad despite the mouthfeel.

Photo of FLBeerGuy
4/5  rDev +1.5%
look: 4 | smell: 4 | taste: 4 | feel: 4 | overall: 4

Pours a hazy peach color with a thick white foamy head which leaves nice lacing.

Smell is fruity, spicy & yeasty.

Taste is sweet malty, some spices & a nice hop kick at the end.

Mouthfeel is light to medium with some dryness on the way down.

This is one of the dryer and hoppier saisons I've had. A very drinkable saison from the lost abby, worth trying if you get a chance.

Photo of TheFightfan1
4.03/5  rDev +2.3%
look: 4 | smell: 3.5 | taste: 4 | feel: 4.5 | overall: 4.5

My wife bought this one for me at the Newportville Inn. Poured into a tulip that left a thick tightly bubbled white white heading.Poured a clear honey the first time around but the second glass all of the sediment poured out into a cloudy mess.

Smell is spicey. The spice really compliments the fruits in this beer. Slight earthiness and a bit of a yeasty after nose.

Taste is corrianderwith a nice lemon taste and grapefruit hoppiness that really matches well to this beer.Yeast hits you in the mouth towards the end but a fruitiness is left lingering.

Mouth is smooth lightly bodied full of carbonation.Nice spice on the tongue but not overwhelming.

Drink is very good.Easy to have a few of these a light bodied and very tasty.

Photo of digr
4.03/5  rDev +2.3%
look: 4.5 | smell: 4 | taste: 4 | feel: 4 | overall: 4

A - Cork /Caged bottle poured into a Rapscallion chalice produced a beautiful slightly haze deep golden liquid with a thick white 3 cm head with a mix of tiny and medium bubbles. Head dissipates after about about 4 minutes.

S - Great Belgian-esqe malty yeasty smell. Similar to a strong Belgian golden ale. Good floral notes that are both hoppy and fruity. Mouthwatering in anticipation.

T - Interesting central flavor of rounded malt with a very mild spice note and heavy backing of hops / bitterness. Definite floral / fruity notes. The bitterness seems a bit out of balance but not bad. Subsequent tastes reveal a slight medicinal flavor.

M - Light to medium mouthfeel - finishes dry. I prefer a bit more body in a Saison - but as a summer beer it is correct for the style.

D - Since the body is fairly light and finishes dry, this is an easy to drink beer. No noticeable Alcohol bite. The bitterness seems a bit unbalanced but not enough to hinder consumption.

Photo of tai4ji2x
3.93/5  rDev -0.3%
look: 4.5 | smell: 4 | taste: 4 | feel: 4 | overall: 3.5

750ml brown bottle w cork and cage. no date. tasted in mid/late may 2009. poured into tulip.

golden straw honey color. clear on first pour. hazy on subsequent pours. big 3-finger, fluffy, off-white head, becomes rocky, then a cranular meringue, eventually receding to a thin wispy layer. puffy, consistent lacing.

aroma: spicy and fruity, with notes of ripe apple, pear and white grape, plus dried orange peel, anise, and possibly coriander. moves along to yeasty, malty bread and toasty light caramel. quite sweet though. farmhouse notes of hay and grass, euro hopping with herbal and floral tones, matching somewhat with the overall sweetness. gentle phenols in back.

taste: malty and fruity, with sweet spicing. caramel and ripe apple, touch of anise. balanced by euro hop grassiness with a cleansing and crisp, moderate bitterness. acidity underneath and peaking towards finish. slight watery tones here and there however. gentle phenols w spice again. bitterness lingers subtly.

medium body and smooth, with moments of wateriness. astringency and acidic flashes in the finish. moderate carbonation is tingly, occasionally fluffy.

complex, but sweeter and fruitier than i expected. also those moments of wateriness didn't help. still ok, but at this price, there are cheaper options of comparable or better quality.

taste should be 3.8 and drinkability a 4.0

Photo of CoolJosh
3.32/5  rDev -15.7%
look: 3.5 | smell: 4 | taste: 3 | feel: 3.5 | overall: 3

Big thanks to the awesome trader who sent this one out to me.

Poured from a 750 mL, pours a very thick and hazy yellow with an orange center. White creamy head that disolves rather quickly. Over does it on the haziness that really kills the look for similar, looks like a momossa.

Now the smell I like, some skunkiness but its surprisingly pleasant, with nice sweet peach scents and soft lemon. White grapes and french oak add for a very pleasant aroma. Somewhat subdued, which is the only drawback.

Very thick feel to it, starts with very soft lemon, progresses to a tart orange and sour peach flavors. Not too impressed here. Some sort of weird malt taste that just doesn't do it for me.

Photo of DoubleJ
4.36/5  rDev +10.7%
look: 5 | smell: 4 | taste: 4.5 | feel: 4 | overall: 4.5

Time to revisit the Lost Abbey tonight. 750 ml corked and caged bottle, on to the beer:

Loud POP as I take out the cork....that's a good sign. The soapy head on top is billowy with low density, the body being brilliant and gold in color. Beautiful! There is good stuff in the aroma. Barnyard funk is easy to point out, also picking up some pepermint and leather aromas.

At the very least, this is a delicious spiced ale. At first, you get that "saison" farmhouse funk, plus a squirt of pears. The spices then begin to do their magic. Very minty spices, like peppermint and spearmint. It's a well blended, all-around flavor in this beer. A bit of prickly carbonation in the mouth keeps things going. Echoes of spice and blanket in the aftertaste.

Well, that was a pleasant brew, but where's the love for the Red Barn? One of the more "affordable" Lost Abbey brew on the market, and a very good one too.

Photo of vrazionale
4.37/5  rDev +10.9%
look: 4 | smell: 4.5 | taste: 4.5 | feel: 3.5 | overall: 4.5

Corked-and-caged 750 mL bottle at refrigerator temperature poured into a snifter.

A - Hazy orange-straw colored body with a cloudlike head that gets to a finger and a half before slowly receding to the edges of the brew.

S - Mushroomy, farmy, musty funk against a backdrop of spices (ginger, coriander, white pepper), citrus, and bright floral hops. I pick up on a touch of wildflower honey character. Lots of "yeast electricity" here.

T - The hop character is bright, but with very little bitterness. The wild yeast character adds a musty funkiness that is a striking counterpoint to the floral, citrus, and spice notes. The finish is long, with the funk lingering on the palate, tempting you to quaff and sip again. Very well-done.

M - Light and effervescent, perhaps a little too light-bodied for the complex flavor profile. Not as crisp as I like my saisons to be.

D - I really, really like this brew. More funk than a lot of saisons, and it works exceptionally well with the fruity, spicy flavor profile. I'd love to drink this with fried fish tacos, a Chicago-style hotdog, or a bright cow's milk cheese like Piermont from Robie Farm in Piermont, NH. Fans of saisons, seek out this brew!

Photo of augustgarage
4.38/5  rDev +11.2%
look: 5 | smell: 4.5 | taste: 4.5 | feel: 4 | overall: 4

Poured from a 750mL bottle into my Troubadour tulip glass.

Murky gamboge body crowned by a rocky old-lace foam butte. Firm merengue like retention, and excellent lacing.

Soft, luscious, evocative, and inviting aromas of challah, banana, clove, cinnamon, freshly mown hay, and other subtle herbs/spices. Unique, complex, though sweeter than most Saisons I've tried.

Sweet malty entrance on the palate, proceeded by a brief hop bitterness accompanied by a yeasty funk with a hint of citrus, quickly fading to brown bread crust, and a long somewhat spicy, very dry finish.

Nearly medium-bodied, fluffy, with heavy carbonation.

Difficult to put down - glad I picked this up after being disappointed in Serpent's Stout.

Photo of Docer
4.05/5  rDev +2.8%
look: 4 | smell: 4 | taste: 4.5 | feel: 3.5 | overall: 3.5

Finally founda bottle up at By The Bottle in Vanc., WA... they had a few.. picked up this, Magi, and a few others... no recent shipments though...

- Clear golden copper color... huge white fluffy head, very bubbly.. thin lines of lacing after all the carb boiled down... cake of lace maker...

- Nice zest of banana, lemon peel, herb, and biscuit... and lively yeast... much like any wheat saison... white ale, or Belgian Wheat etc....

- Creamy strong Belgian Yeast... thick banana, bread, biscuit.. some spice and lemon zest... overall a very nicely done malty caramel... yet zesty and bright... thick... American something... can't put my finger on it.. but it's smooth and delish!

- Slight chewy feeling.. some sweetness at fault I guess... bubbly on the lips....

- Overall very smooth and creamy... just a touch over carbonated. The head won't go away, and it keeps me from wanting todrink this balanced farmhouse as quickly as I want to..

Photo of ILikeGoodCider
3.85/5  rDev -2.3%
look: 4 | smell: 4 | taste: 4 | feel: 3.5 | overall: 3.5

Enjoyed on my birthday (today - 07.27.09) - was hoping to get a hold of a Westy 12, but I fell short. A 750ml brown bottle poured into a imperial pint glass.

A: Poured a large off-white creamy head that dissipated slowly w/terrific lacing. The brew is a hazy yellow-gold.

S: "Last year's beer" is apparent (read: sour) w/some fruit like peaches & berries, & some spicy character.

T: The sour is there & some hop bitterness, spicy pepper, honey, florals, and correct if if I'm wrong, but there might be some pumpkin there...

M: Medium body, smooth, low carbs.

D: A bit better than avg drinkability, not overwhelming but intense at times. Not Ommegang, but well-done. One of my top beers from the Abbey.

Photo of nomomentwasted
4.12/5  rDev +4.6%
look: 4 | smell: 4.5 | taste: 4 | feel: 4 | overall: 4

Had this on tap at the Lost Abbey Xmas party. Wanted to try this for a while, and for $4/pint, definitely a good deal that would save me buying the bottle if I didn't dig it.

Appearance: Gingery-orangish-yellow that had a fluffier head with thick lacing. Pretty nice looking brew.

Smell: Clove, clove, and clove. That was all I smelled at first, but as it opened up, I smelled some more yeasty, bready notes with a bit of hay and pepper to it. Overall, aromatic and strong.

Taste: Almost the same as the smell, but the clove-spice is the strongest that grabs hold at the start and really wrestles you around for a while. Funky hay and grassy taste develops later, but never too bitter. Bready and filling.

Mouthfeel: A bit thicker that I expected, and definitely coated on the way down. Drier, but not hugely so, and with a really peppery finish.

Drinkability: Heavy in some ways, but definitely a saison style with the clove and bread style. If that's your thing, it's really drinkable, but for me it bogged down after a while from the sheer weightiness. Overall, a solid beer that displays the Saison style pretty proficiently.

Photo of ffejherb
4.02/5  rDev +2%
look: 3.5 | smell: 4 | taste: 4 | feel: 3.5 | overall: 4.5

On tap at Lost Abbey tasting room on 7/10/09.

A - Hazy golden body with minimal carbonation and half a finger of white foamy head that transformed into a thin ring and spotty lace.

S - Spicy nose with coriander, clove, white pepper and licorice, and perhaps a hint of ginger. There is also a bit of barnyard funk in the back suggesting hay, grass and mild herbs.

T - Opens with plenty of dry spices including coriander, pepper and clove notes. A subtle licorice character also emerges. Finishes with plenty of earthy yeast, funky hay and moderately bitter herbal hop notes.

M - Light bodied with a thin, syrupy texture and medium carbonation. Finishes with an earthy, herbal hop bite and a hint of funky sourness on the palate.

D - Nice spiced up saison with a good amount of funk to mix things up and keep it interesting. This is definitely not too sweet at all for the style, which in turn really enhances its overall drinkability.

Photo of LevitatedEep
4.25/5  rDev +7.9%
look: 4.5 | smell: 4.5 | taste: 4 | feel: 4 | overall: 4.5

Somewhat clear, golden with white frothy head that wont go down.

Has a very good smell, very intense spices, corriander, peppery and cloves.

In your face bitter...in a good way, alcoholic prescence along side yeast flavors.

Dry, medium carbonation, pretty similar to it's style.

I really like this beer and this style is growing on me. I want to have this brew with a nice ham dinner.

Photo of MisterClean
4.18/5  rDev +6.1%
look: 4.5 | smell: 4 | taste: 4 | feel: 4.5 | overall: 4.5

Shared with some friends.

A - Poured a hazy copper orange with a 2 fingered white head. Dissipated slow and left nice lacing.

S - Barnyardy with notes of light brett and mint. Interesting to say the least, but probably expected for a saison.

T - Barny with toffee, grass, mint, and little bit of brett.

M - Full-bodied, well-balanced, but malt dominated.

D - Overall great. This represents what a saison should be with even though some brettanomyeces may have been introduced to this batch. I don't know why I always skip this bottle when I shop, but will purchase as it is a favorite saison now.

Photo of TheManiacalOne
3.53/5  rDev -10.4%
look: 4 | smell: 3.5 | taste: 3.5 | feel: 3.5 | overall: 3.5

Poured from a 750ml bottle into a tulip glass.

A: The beer is a bright gold color with a large white head that fades slowly and leaves a thick lace on the glass.

S: The aroma is of Belgian yeast, tart fruits, spices, light caramelized malts and a touch of hops.

T: The taste starts with tart and sweet flavors of apples, citrus, spices and some caramel. Then there's a good Belgian yeast breadiness that comes in along with a hearty malt character. The hops presence is mild but complementary and brings a decent balance. The after-taste is slightly bready and slightly sweet.

M: Crisp and smooth, medium body, medium carbonation, finish is slightly sticky.

D: Tasty, goes down easily, not too filling, decent kick, good representation of style, this is a nice sour-style Saison that is worth drinking a while.

Photo of Boilermaker88
4.47/5  rDev +13.5%
look: 4 | smell: 4.5 | taste: 4.5 | feel: 4.5 | overall: 4.5

One of the Lost Abbey brews offered at my local BevMo; poured into a tulip glass. Has a straw yellow color, lots of carbonation, and a thick, chunky white head that left clumps of itself behind in successive rings.

Smell is tart, fruity and spicy with aromas of pepper, summer fruits (think apples and peaches), and a hint of funk (think barnyard).

The taste was a pleasant melding of smooth fruity maltiness as the apple/peach/pineapple flavors rolled around with the peppery coriander-laced hops pop. Lingering in the mix were the tastes of yeast and a leathery, hide-based funkiness. Pretty much just what I like about saisons.

The feel was light, crisp and very lively on the tongue thanks to all that carbonation constantly stoking the head.

All in all, a pretty solid example of the style and one that won't break the bank. It's a nice brew to have with grilled chicken and veggies. Worth seeking out.

Red Barn Ale from The Lost Abbey
88 out of 100 based on 874 ratings.