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Cuvee De Tomme - The Lost Abbey

Not Rated.
Cuvee De TommeCuvee De Tomme

Educational use only; do not reuse.

1,068 Ratings

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Ratings: 1,068
Reviews: 404
rAvg: 4.21
pDev: 11.16%
Wants: 649
Gots: 263 | FT: 13
Brewed by:
The Lost Abbey visit their website
California, United States

Style | ABV
American Wild Ale |  11.00% ABV

Availability: Rotating

Notes & Commercial Description:
Beer added by: jcalabre on 06-14-2003

Once upon a time it was the most award winning Pizza Port beer of all time. Now it has found a new home at The Lost Abbey.

A massive brown ale base that is made from four fermentable sugars including Malted Barley, Raisins, Candi Sugar and Sour Cherries, this beer is fully fermented before being placed in Bourbon barrels where the beer ages for one year with the Sour Cherries and the wild Brettanomyces yeast that we inoculate the barrels with.
Beer: Ratings & Reviews
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Ratings: 1,068 | Reviews: 404
Photo of Sammy
4.75/5  rDev +12.8%
look: 4.5 | smell: 4.5 | taste: 5 | feel: 4 | overall: 5

Incredible. Complex. The bottle talks about an experiment that led to lightning. A Cantillon plus. The yeast, the sourness,the berry, the cherry. Pizza Port, here I come. Radekfest 05 sample 33, thank you Eyedrinkable. Best 1% of beers I have ever had.

Photo of t0rin0
4.25/5  rDev +1%

Photo of spycow
4/5  rDev -5%

Photo of UCLABrewN84
3.66/5  rDev -13.1%
look: 2.5 | smell: 4 | taste: 4 | feel: 2.5 | overall: 3.5

Pours a murky dark brown color with no head. An oily film develops on the top of the beer and there is some floating sediment that sinks to the bottom of the glass. There is no lacing whatsoever. Smells of vinegar, sour cherries, and funk/must. Taste is of sour cherries, malt vinegar, wood, and funk/must. There is an alcohol presence in the throat after each sip. There is no carbonation on this beer. Extremely flat and somewhat drying in the mouth. Overall, this is a nice smelling and tasting beer but the appearance and mouthfeel kill it for me. This would be awesome if the carbonation issue were fixed. Disappointing for the $15.99 I paid for the small bottle.

Photo of djrn2
4.25/5  rDev +1%

Photo of zestar
4.25/5  rDev +1%

Photo of acurtis
4/5  rDev -5%

Photo of Texasfan549
4/5  rDev -5%

Photo of GRG1313
3.47/5  rDev -17.6%
look: 3 | smell: 3.5 | taste: 3.5 | feel: 3.5 | overall: 3.5

"Vintage 2011" on the bottle neck.

I have had multiple vintages of this beer and actually thought I'd reviewed it long ago. I was going to go in and add some notes and the "2011 Vintage" on my review when it appears that I've actually not posted a review of any of the past vintages consumed.

I write this review of the 2011 vintage which is noteworthy since it is, so far, nothing like any of the CdT I've had in the past. Past bottles, in my experience, has been light to medium color and full of a bright and sour/tart character. This vintage seems to be quite the anomoly and I'm wondering if this is a unique batch or a change in receipe. Either way, the 2011 vintage is not typical of years past.

Pours a dark reddish brown with no head. Looks more like red wine than beer, especially since there is no head.

Nose is cooked cherries and undertones of fig. There is almost a hint of cocoa. Pleasant and assertive.

Mouthfeel is unique in that there is no carbonation yet insufficiently sour/tart to resemble a lambick. There is a hint of fizz when the bottle is first opened (or was it my imagination??)

Flavors are just huge and, again, not at all typical of past bottles in my experience. Big dark semi sour cherries, cola, fig and a sour chocolate character. It tastes a bit like a basic generic red wine with sour cherry juice poured in. (Tastes better than that sounds).

Finish is a mild lightly sour cherry/fig.

I cannot grade on past bottles which I've enjoyed so much that I'd had it marked a "5" on my "Hads," now to review it and significantly down-grade it based on just this bottle, the 2011. I'll keep a bottle and see what happens. (I have a stash of 2009 and 2010 that I'm going to open this week and add notes to this review. Whether it will change the score or not, we'll find out).

Photo of nmann08
4.5/5  rDev +6.9%

Photo of kjkinsey
3.25/5  rDev -22.8%

Photo of Thorpe429
4.39/5  rDev +4.3%
look: 4 | smell: 5 | taste: 4 | feel: 4.5 | overall: 4.5

375mL bottle purchased at the Pizza Port Carlsbad bottle shop in August 2009.

A: Pours a nice dark brown with a clingy white head and plenty of lacing.

S: Sweet tartness from the cherries, with the quadrupel aspect of the brew coming through underneath with a bit of a nose from the barrel.

T: Tart cherries, a bit sour, but not too puckering. Not as complex as the nose led on, but a very tasty beer. The balance between the tartness and sourness of the cherries compared with the quadrupel base could be a bit better, but no major complaints.

M: A tad bit puckering for some dryness. Medium-bodied.

D: Very tasty all around and one that sat well for quite some time. Glad I picked this one up.

Photo of metter98
4.35/5  rDev +3.3%
look: 4 | smell: 4 | taste: 4.5 | feel: 4.5 | overall: 4.5

A: The beer is very dark brownish amber in color and poured with a thin ring of bubbles around the edge of the glass.
S: There are light to moderately strong aromas of tart cherries in the nose.
T: Similar to the smell, the taste is filled with flavors of oak, cherries and vanilla. The tartness from the cherry flavors seems to have been muted from the oak aging.
M: It feels medium-bodied and very smooth on the palate and has a light amount of carbonation.
O: The beer is very good after aging because it becomes a lot smoother and much of the tartness in the cherry flavors is eliminated.

Note: 2005 Vintage

Photo of olradetbalder
3.5/5  rDev -16.9%

Photo of brentk56
4.56/5  rDev +8.3%
look: 3.5 | smell: 5 | taste: 4.5 | feel: 4.5 | overall: 4.5

2008 Vintage

Appearance: Pours a burnt caramel color that refuses to raise much of a head, despite an aggressive pour; no lacing

Smell: An extraordinary range of aromas - cherry pits, bourbon/vanilla, raisins, caramel and Brett

Taste: Opens with a caramel and bourbon sweetness that grows increasingly sour as we move into the mid-palate (it becomes almost impossible to let it rest on the tongue) ; after the swallow, the sour flavors fold back to display the fruit, with the cherries and raisins dominant; the sweetness doesn't last, however, and the sour flavors linger on the finish for an extended period

Mouthfeel: Medium to full body with moderate to low carbonationl; almost juicy

Drinkability: Just an extraodinary beer, but not something you can drink on a regular basis; definitely meant for sharing

Photo of ygtbsm94
4/5  rDev -5%

Photo of BEERchitect
4.47/5  rDev +6.2%
look: 4 | smell: 4.5 | taste: 4.5 | feel: 4.5 | overall: 4.5

Vintage 2009, enjoyed on August 31, 2009: This year's is much more tart and bitter than I remember from the '08 a few months ago. I expected the younger version to be big on bitterness but not that vineous, tart cherry character. Though not as rounded with the rise of the raison and softer, sweeter tones abounding; this is still one world class sour. My scores reflect this latest vintage.
Thanks JMBSH!

Vintage 2008, enjoyed on June 12, 2009: Again, an insanely good beer. All of the comments from three years ago still apply (see below) but I notice a great showing of raisons, cherries, bourbon-soaked woods, caramels, and even chocolates. Extremely delicate for such power. Vineous and rich throughout. I've never been more sad to see the bottom of a glass. Thanks Clvand0!

Another jewel available at Chicago's FoBAB last weekend. Colored the belgian mohogany-rust color with little 'floaties' swimming around in there. Lightly fizzy head retention reduced to a film. Aromas are solid, spicy of the Belgian Trippel base but with some serious tartness and fruitiness. Musky, but not yet horse blanket like. Low level sweetness gives way to tart cherries, grapefruit, peaches, and pears. A mild nutty, cocoa, dates sweetness rounds off the lactic sourness to a pleasant tartness. A thin, yet creamy, texture thins into the throat. Mildly puckering, but not astringent or grainy. Warming in the back of the throat accompanies some bittering. Finishes clean and tart. Not as drying as expected. My first Pizza Port offering did not disapoint!

Photo of SocalKicks
4.25/5  rDev +1%

Photo of Phyl21ca
4/5  rDev -5%
look: 4 | smell: 4 | taste: 4 | feel: 4 | overall: 4

Bottle: Poured a deep cloudy reddish color ale with a small bubbly head with minimal retention and not much lacing. Aroma of sour and tart notes with some cherries and light oak notes are all noticeable. Taste is close to a Flander red style beer with loads of oak and cherry notes and a well balanced tart finish. Balanced acidity is well appreciated while Brett is very hard to notice. Body is quite full with limited filtration and low carbonation. Well made though not s complex as some of the staple of the style such as Rodenbach.

Photo of Knapp85
4.33/5  rDev +2.9%
look: 3 | smell: 4.25 | taste: 4.75 | feel: 3.75 | overall: 4.25

This poured out kind of flat looking which is always a disappointment to me. Had some minimal bubbles around the edge of the glass but with time they vanished. The beer is murky brown looking with plenty of sediment floating around. The smell of the beer is funky with a boozy sweetness mixed with the cherry aromas. The taste are a sour tart cherry flavor upfront with a very subtle vanilla oak flavor in the finish. The mouthfeel I the beer is smooth, kind of flat which is a shame. Overall this beer has great taste and aroma but falls short in most other aspects.

Photo of BuckeyeNation
4.33/5  rDev +2.9%
look: 4.5 | smell: 4 | taste: 4.5 | feel: 4 | overall: 4.5

2008 vintage. Black cherry with beautiful scarlet highlights when the snifter is held up to my sunlit front window. A lovely crown of light brown sugar colored foam is waaay ahead of the game in terms of texture, given the ABV and the barrel aging. A bloody good look.

Considering everything that's going on here, the nose is a something of a disappointment (relative to expectations). The BSDA/quadrupel contributes, as do the sour cherries. The bourbon barrels and the wild yeast... not so much. Then again, there's probably a limit to how many distinct aromas can be present in any one beer. Note: raisins soaked in tawny port appear with warming.

The flavor profile is just about as complex as they come. While I might not have been able to identify each of the beer's major contributors, each is easily appreciated once you know they're there. Thankfully, they hit the taste buds at successive points throughout the mouthful.

First is a big blast of tart cherry juice that lessens from start to finish, but never completely disappears. Next comes the Brettanomyces funk and the ripe dark fruitiness of Judgment Day, which is this beer's base beer. Finally, on the impossibly long finish, we have subtle notes of oak and vanilla.

It's strictly personal preference, but I would have eased off the cherries just a bit and would have added more bourbon barrel character. That isn't a complaint, though, because this is fantastic beer that is a joy to sip and savor. The 12.0% ABV drinks more like 8.0%, which is a mighty impressive feat.

The mouthfeel is almost worthy of the next highest score, but I'd need either more fullness or more creaminess to get there. The bubbles are slightly harsh initially, then settle down a few ounces in. It's heartening to see that these guys haven't always had issues with carbonation.

It takes balls (and a big ego) to name a beer Cuvee De Tomme, but if you can back it up... This style-busting, dizzyingly complex ale is yet one more reason why The Lost Abbey is on my list of top-10 favorite American craft breweries. If they keep pushing the envelope and pay attention to quality control, they should be there for a long time to come.

Photo of mikesgroove
4.9/5  rDev +16.4%
look: 5 | smell: 5 | taste: 5 | feel: 4 | overall: 5

Big thanks to Joey for sending this one my way. I have been literally dying to try this one, and threw it in the fridge to cool down the second it arrived. Your typical very nice looking Lost Abbey bottle, corked and caged 375ml. 2008 Vintage. Served in an oversized wine glass, and consumed on 08/03/2008.

The pour was very nice. Rich dark brown, very hazy and cloudy with a rich tan colored head. Excellent retention left behind thick coating side glass lace. Some light carbonation at first, but this quickly diminished. This one looking like a monster though, not really sure what else to say, accept this looked awesome!

The aromas, wow I do not even know where to start with this one. So intricate and complex, it almost was beyond description. The first notes to come across were funky and sour, which were to be expected, however, letting this one warm up brought about all sorts of goodness. This one had to warm though to really let you appreciate all of the subtleties that were going on here. Rich notes of caramel and tart cherries, light notes of oak and woodsy like malts. Extremely complex here. The flavor was much more of the same, just absolutely decadent and delicious. This was honestly one of the best flavors I have ever experienced in a beer, and I really mean that. It was tremendously good. Started out a nice rush of Brett funkiness in all of its glory, rich notes of fruit, cherries layered in on top of that with an almost toffee like flavor as the base. This was very reminiscent of a funky KRE in its complexity. A rich cascade of semi sweet flavor then rolled through and tool over as it always does. I have to admit it needed a little bit more punch in the carbonation though it was still very well done. I have to comment though that this was ridiculously session able for a 12% ale. I was sipping this like a 6% Kriek, until I realized that it was starting to catch up to me. It's really hard though to place a style on this one. It had a lit of the almost chewy character of the Angels share, but with some much tartness, ala a Red Poppy, when it was fresh, but the level this reached was much better though, and they are both fantastic in their own right.

Overall I was blow away with this one. It was just ridiculously good. I have had very few beers that can live up to this kind of expectation, but this one I am proud to say was one of them. I would love to try this again any day, it was just fantastic. Go out and try to find this one if you can, it is well worth it.

Photo of StonedTrippin
4.34/5  rDev +3.1%
look: 4 | smell: 4.25 | taste: 4.5 | feel: 4.25 | overall: 4.25

so stoked to finally try this, a beautiful specimen from the lost abbey. a rich mahogany color to it, lots of bubbles for what it is, and a nose to die for. really tart cherries and citric acid present themselves right up front. stick rich grainy beer follows, belgian loosely, but more raisin and molasses heavy than grain specifically. light spice, tons of cherries on the flavor. some residual sugar too, but they are balanced well with one another. it coats my palate well despite vbeing rather well carbonated for the style. cherries ll the way through start on the sour end and finish a little sweeter and fresher. dynamic and complex as anything, the sourness on the quad base make it like no other beer ive had. great use of fruit here, and very well hidden alcohol strength. one of the best beers from the lost abbey, and thats saying something.

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

On-tap at Beachwood BBQ

A: The pour is dark brown with reddish tints. A bit of off-white foam sits on top.

S: Tart cherries, raisins, a bit of alcohol, and bit of funk. Leather, oak, and plenty of earthy notes to go along with it.

T: The predominant flavor is the tart cherry. There is also some sour apple and raisins. The finish is quite earthy and dry. Not a huge funk to the beer, but great oak/barrel contributions.

M: Medium bodied, good carbonation, and quite tart.

D: A great all around experience. Great flavor and sourness.

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Cuvee De Tomme from The Lost Abbey
94 out of 100 based on 1,068 ratings.