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Cuvee De Tomme - The Lost Abbey

Not Rated.
Cuvee De TommeCuvee De Tomme

Educational use only; do not reuse.

1,040 Ratings

(view ratings)
Ratings: 1,040
Reviews: 400
rAvg: 4.21
pDev: 11.4%
Wants: 645
Gots: 259 | 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: xlperro on 12-14-2006

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: 1,040 | Reviews: 400 | Display Reviews Only:
Photo of HopHead84
4.92/5  rDev +16.9%
look: 4.5 | smell: 5 | taste: 5 | feel: 4.5 | overall: 5

I was ecstatic to find this on tap at the PP Belgian Beer Fest. I've had bottles of this several times since its last release, but it's been far too long since I last had it on tap.

Cuvee de Tomme is dark amber brown with a one inch, off white head. I'm greeted by the most fantastic tart and sour cherry aroma I've ever experienced. Oak, caramel, chocolate, vanilla, plum, and fig are all present in the nose, with some alcohol. The taste has a high level of sourness and a medium level of tartness. The cherries combined with the subtle chocolate are stunning. Oak is noticeable, with some vanilla, plums, figs, and caramel. The alcohol is very well hidden for its high level.

Cuvee de Tomme is medium-full bodied with a medium level of carbonation and a vinous mouthfeel. This is, without a doubt, my favorite sour cherry beer, and one of my favorite beers period. I can't wait for the next release.

Photo of steadydose
3.58/5  rDev -15%
look: 4 | smell: 3.5 | taste: 3.5 | feel: 4 | overall: 3.5

2008 11.0% Purchased from brewery 5/08/08.

Cork tough to pull out, little pop, CO2 present.

A: Poured into lost abbey tulip.Dark brown beeer w/ red hues when held up to the light. Khaki head around the outer rim of glass. Beer leaves no lacing.

S: Sour Cherries, a little vinegar, lots of oak, as beer warms malt sweetness comes through.

T: Sour cherries, tart, long finish w/ lots of oak flavor. Astringint. A little dark chocolate with the finish.

M: Has decent carbonation, soft mouthfeel. Good.

D:Good beer, complex. Cuvee hides its 11% very well. Just too much oak in this beer for my taste. Looking forward to trying 09 version.

Update: 09 version
More similarities than differences when compared to the 08 version, but the 09 version for me is much better. Not as tannic, oaky and just more balance in the beer. The sour cherries are delicious fresh. Scores are still for the 08 version.

Photo of DarkerTheBetter
4.37/5  rDev +3.8%
look: 4.5 | smell: 5 | taste: 4 | feel: 4 | overall: 4.5

Thanks to gregc for this one.

This beer opened with a dull thud and pours a lovely dirty raisin, much like lake water, with touches of red wine when held to the light. It's also a bit cloudy with only a thin collar of manila for a head.

Smells great! At first I'm greeted with a dense wall of funk, but this dissipates and slowly some depth is revealed. First comes a brown sugar and pastry dough that gets a little dry, splitting things up into a dryer dinner roll and a confectioners sugar while a sweet, natural cherry creeps out. Nice!

The taste: I didn't see that one coming. Starts with a blast of sourness but then sheers off into a wall of oaky dryness that ruffles up the sides of my tongue. The oak obliterates my mouth, drying out just about everything. Little hints of caramelized sugar, coffee and cherries creep in with the funk and the oak to add a rather nice flavor, but overall, the dryness dominates. In the finish, as the oak fades, I'm left with a nice touch of peanut brittle. I'd like to say that I am displeased with this abrupt dryness, but I keep eagerly going back for another taste.

Feels quite slick and it gets rather hard to detect when the dryness hits. Not much carbonation here, but the dryness seems to make me aware of a film in my mouth.

A tasty brew for sure and a nice change of pace for sour beers for me.

Photo of BARFLYB
4.49/5  rDev +6.7%
look: 3.5 | smell: 4.5 | taste: 5 | feel: 4 | overall: 4

2008 bottle poured into a Chimay glass. Got this one through Brotherliam some time ago.

A- Cuvee De Tomme released a loud pop when the cork was released. With a nice gentle pour nothing in terms of head and I don't think one would come up with with a lot of force. Just a few faint bubbles on top while the liquid looks a dark brown, slight mahogany. Some red spots up towards light.

S- CDT has a nice up front smell of sour cherry and some green apple plus a hint of lemon. Also some wood from it's time in the barrel. Smelling some raisins from the original base beer Judgement Day. Almost somewhat of an acidic smell with a tart backdrop. Opens up more as this breaths.

T- Not as tart as imagined but it will do. The sour cherries added during the brewing process are really defined and stand out. This blends's nicely with the wood/oak from the barrel which leads to a bit of vanilla. A bit of lemon in the back adds to the souresque taste. Getting some cinnamon,plum and ripe apple with warming. Where is the alcohol?

M- A nice puckering crispness from the tartness in this each sip but nothing over the top. What's amazing is how the alcohol is hidden. This has some vinious qualities. For 12% I can hardly notice it. This is pretty much on the medium bodied level with not over the top carb.

D- Drink is off the charts but alas I probably won't see this for some time so I'm savoring my ounces. My 1st "sour" from lost abbey is a winner. This kind of reminds me of a flanders red beer. This was a pleasure to drink and everyone should get to try this at some point, worth seeking out.

Photo of PatronWizard
3.58/5  rDev -15%
look: 4 | smell: 3.5 | taste: 3.5 | feel: 4 | overall: 3.5

Got raped on ebay but I got'er anyway. Was really attracted to the 11%!

Satisfying pop of the cork. Pours a deep brown with almost no highlights. Very dark I says. Semi-aggressive pour yields a small dirty white head that fades pretty quick.

Smell is sour but in a mouth watering way. Cherries are evident. I swear I've smelled this before. Wife says it smells like "pottied underwear that have dried." Well... damn. We have many young'uns. Sometimes they potty. Sometimes it smells.

Taste is ... unusual. Not over the top sour, but sour. Decent. Grapes. Chalky. I wouldn't claim it's world class. Sticky; the flavor is glued to my tongue.

I'll tell you what makes this better than a lot of sours: 11% bitches!! I understand experimenting with the yeast, but when you do it with a 5% beer, it just seems like a waste of time to me. Then again, I'm a man.

Overall: s'okay

Photo of chefnash51
4.82/5  rDev +14.5%
look: 4 | smell: 4.5 | taste: 5 | feel: 5 | overall: 5

tasted After the NotB fest. So.. yeah, maybe I wasn't in the best state of mind to review this, but who knows if I will ever actually get a bottle of this. And it was Spectacular.

This beer cut through all the nights drunkenness and hot messes and hit my tongue just right.

Carbonation was on the low side

A nice dark walnut color gave way to a decent head.

Sweet cherries and oak on the nose

Taste was where it all came together. This beer is just so wonderfully put together. Every aspect made sense together. Dark Cherries, caramelized sugar, oak, the wonderful tartness..it was a complex treat.

Photo of akorsak
4.6/5  rDev +9.3%
look: 4.5 | smell: 4.5 | taste: 5 | feel: 4.5 | overall: 4

Thanks to chefscott79 for this 375 mL bottle. This beer was my most sought-after want for as long as I can remember.

A: The cork was removed with little fanfare. Poured into my glass, carbonation seems to be missing. A few bubbles here and there and that's it. The ale is a dark walnut wood color.

S: The nose is sour cherries, sourer cherries and sourest cherries. No gettin' around that one. A mild tartness, funk from something other than the cherry, and oak also leave a mark.

T: As in the pour, carbonation is at a premium. No bubbles anywhere! Luckily the ale is such a whopper, taste-wise, that there's no missing 'em. Cherries are first, sweet but sour. They quickly transition into tartness. The tartness is mild, sharp enough to let you know it's there but not mind-numbingly tart. The oak barrel is the final element to come through, waiting patiently behind the others. The oak has given the ale a full, boozy element that brings the cherries and tartness together. When all three aspects fire together, watch out.

M: The tartness, not overbearing, is enough to make you take notice. But when paired with the cherries and oak, wowie wow.

D: Wanting is more pleasing a thing than having. Thanks to Mr. Spock for that insight. In this case, my longing was well rewarded. This is a fantastic beer, so complex and nuanced. The only drawback is the strength; it hits you like a hammer. Well done.

Photo of tjthresh
3.94/5  rDev -6.4%
look: 3 | smell: 4 | taste: 4 | feel: 4 | overall: 4

The beer pours dark red/brown/black, depending on how it is held to the light. The only signs of head is the slight ring around the edge. Aromas of black cherry (comes of Jolly Rancher-ish), soy sauce, slight musty basement, and a touch of alcohol. The flavor is nice and fruity. Loads of tart cherry and plums. Warm alcoholic finish. Silk and oil over the palate. Moderate carbonation. This is less like a beer and more of a wine or high end liquor. Thanks a million Mike.

Photo of WeeObese
4.67/5  rDev +10.9%
look: 4 | smell: 4.5 | taste: 5 | feel: 4.5 | overall: 4.5

2008 Bottle. The beer pours a deep mahogany with a tiny tan head, that disipates quickly. The smell is of sour cherries, dark caramel malts (raisins?), and mellow oak/bourbon. Wonderful. The taste is well balanced between the sour/tartness from the cherries, the wild yeasts/bacteria and the deep caramel malts and vanilla like flavors from the barrel. The beer finishes with a tartness and slight tannic finish. The after taste is vanilla and sour cherries. I love this beer and this style. The mouthfeel is full yet not too big. This beer has many wine like properties in smell, taste and mouthfeel. This beer is extremely drinkable, but at 11% abv be careful. I could drink 10 of these no problem. I have to say that this is my favorite of the Lost Abbey yearly releases. Some of the special one off sours are excellent, but I am really glad that this one is released every year. Can't wait for the 09 due out soon.

Photo of pwoods
4.69/5  rDev +11.4%
look: 4 | smell: 5 | taste: 4.5 | feel: 4.5 | overall: 5

Thanks a bunch to Shane(beachbum1975) for sharing this great bottle.

375ml corked and caged brown bottle poured into a snifter.

A: Pours a reddish brown with pretty decent visibility. A moderate head forms and holds for a bit. Decent lacing.

S: A good sour and funky brett combo. Sour cherries blend with the aroma flawlessly. The barrel has done wonders, oaky, sweet, leathery. The funk further festers following Fahrenheit fluxuation.

T/M: Very nice, smooth, rich dark malty base. Yet again, then pleasantly sour and tart cherries match perfectly with the overall beer... never getting remotely in the way, yet making themselves known and adding loads of complexity. There's a bit of a burn sugar quality, maybe as if the cherries were scorched, or maybe it could be from the char of the barrels. Definitely a rich leathery flavor and even feel. Tartness builds as the beer warms. A slight alcohol twang in the swallow but I'd never guess 12% and it's completely hidden other than a bit in the swallow. The body is a smooth medium with good carbonation.

D: Very drinkable. 12% would definitely sneak up on ya.

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

This was a 2008 12.7oz bottle obtained in a trade with organicbrewer. The label states it was brewed and bottled in San Marcos. The beer is dark murky brown color with a thin tan foam. The smell is way complex, sour, cherry, whiffs of alcohol, raisins, strong and rich. The taste is wickedly good too although I'd swear it's a Flanders Red by flavors. Very sour without being too puckering, nice cherry and raisin, almost a little chocolate. The body is full, this is filling and delicious and burns just a little going down.

Photo of srroos
4.2/5  rDev -0.2%
look: 4 | smell: 4 | taste: 4.5 | feel: 4 | overall: 4

2008 release, enjoyed from a 375mL bottle.

A: Dark brown and hazy. Small tan head. Cherry bits in final pours.

S: Oaky, tart, and cherries of course.

T: Very tart and oaky! Yeasty. Like drinking cherries. Very hot alcohol finish.

MF: Medium bodied. Somewhat thin for such a high ABV.

D: Quite easy to drink, but most enjoyable when warm.

Not a big fan of the cherry bits in the beer, but other than that an excellent beer.

Photo of badbeer
4.1/5  rDev -2.6%
look: 4 | smell: 4 | taste: 4.5 | feel: 3 | overall: 4

2008 Version, 375mL bottle:
Color is very dark red with a beige colored head that recedes to a ring around the glass. Smell of acetic acid, cherries, caramel, oak, dark fruits, and brown sugar. Taste is sour with cherry pits, maple, bourbon, dark fruit, and caramel sweetness. Medium carbonation with medium body. Good stuff, I look forward to trying it with a bit more age on it.

Photo of LilBeerDoctor
3.53/5  rDev -16.2%
look: 4 | smell: 3.5 | taste: 3.5 | feel: 3.5 | overall: 3.5

Bottle sampled on 09/26/08 at Night of the Funk. Pours a cloudy brown with a small tan head. Aroma of bourbon and salty butter. Flavor is initially sour with a slight bourbony finish. In general I am not a fan of bourbon-aged beers, but this is definitely one of the better ones (moderation is key!). Pretty decent beer.
7/4/7/4/14 (3.6/5)

Photo of srandycarter
3.81/5  rDev -9.5%
look: 3 | smell: 4.5 | taste: 4 | feel: 3.5 | overall: 3

A - Pours brown/red. Not much head, nor lacing.

S - Cherry Cola. Reminds me of Black Cherry Soda.

T - Big sours cherries is about all I can really discern.

M - Coating, medium body, not much carb.

D - Sours aren't my thing, and I tried to keep wanting to be a sour fan. Oh well, fun to try something different, anyway.

2009 - Even less carb. The last 3 caged corked epic beers I have gotten from LA have been virtually flat. Guess they 'meant to do that' but it's not a big turn on for me.

Photo of brdc
2.28/5  rDev -45.8%
look: 1 | smell: 3 | taste: 3 | feel: 1 | overall: 1

2008 release, courtesy of nflmvp.
Small corke bottle poured into a goblet, it produces a nice dark red, hazy beer with a nice head, colored somewhere between tan and pink. retention is good, not great, same can be said for lacing.
The aroma is the best part, fresh and fruity as you pour. Bourbon, oak, vanilla, layers of fruits and even some vinegar in the background.
Medium, nearly full bodied, softly carbonated with predominantly fruity notes, but it does not end there. The grapes, cherries and plums are accompanied by a sourness that is not as pronounced as advertised, oakiness, bourbon heat, tannins, with a finish somewhat dry and tart. The sweetness aspect of it at times gets a bit too much.
An impressive brew, the best Lost Abbey i had so far, but it falls short of spectacular. It is an amazing improvement over its Judgement Day, which I personally consider average at best, but I am still waiting for Lost Abbey to blow me away. I have been disappointed so far, but in this brew it was likely given the very high expectations.

The 2009 release, which reflects the score since it is the one out there, is a disgrace. Flat, uncarbonated, a very expensive drainpour. It unfortunately reflects their total lack of quality control, since it is the 6th different flat beer I have from them.

Photo of FtownThrowDown
4.82/5  rDev +14.5%
look: 4 | smell: 4.5 | taste: 5 | feel: 5 | overall: 5

Beachbum1975 saw this as one of my top Wants and cracked it open. Thanks man!
Pours reddish brown in color. No head to be found on the pour. Smell is lots of sour cherry and some woody oak. Incredibly lip puckering and tart. Lots of good sour notes coming through in the flavor. The cherry flavor is perfectly done. Very complimentary to the rest of the beer. Just a hint of alcohol burn in the finish. Fairly thick and coating in the mouth. The cherries, sour and oak work amazingly well together and are incredible. This is a world class beer. One of the few, rare and hyped beers that has lived up to the expectations. Incredible beer.

Photo of beachbum1975
4.12/5  rDev -2.1%
look: 4 | smell: 4.5 | taste: 4 | feel: 4 | overall: 4

Got this one on a recent trade with numbeercruncher - thanks, man!!! Shared with DrewOSA, pwoods and Ftownthrowdown.

2008 vintage - 375ml

A: Gorgeous bottle and label with cork and black cage. Lost Abbey package is the best - I feel like I am drinking a rare, medieval elixir! Pours a clear, brown with dark red/ruby highlights. Head didn't stick around long enough for me to describe it.

S: Hmmm, sour cherries all over the place! Nose is rich and poignant cherries and sourness. I think some malts are hanging around in the background, but it's hard to tell. It's a sour cherry bomb on the nose.

T: Ok, you might have sit down for the term described for the predominant taste... Ready? SOUR CHERRIES! Ok, now that the shock has passed, let me see if I can pull any other fancy, descriptive words to describe this beers' flavor.... High levels of sour cherries mixed with some sherry and whiskey attributes. This is not a fresh, juicy, or artificial cherry taste, but rather a fermented, alcohol-ized cherry almost hinging on vinegar, but not in a bad way. The flavor of this beer is not complex - as there's not a whole bouquet of things to try and describe, but rather complex in it's hard to describe the primary flavor itself. If that made any sense at all to you, let's move on. If not, read someone else's review!

M: Highly dry with low carbonation, but enjoyable nonetheless - unique. I can definitely feel the presence of wine in this, because of the high degree of driness... VERY unique and enjoyable to me.

Now... would I stalk the ISO threads on BA, monitor ebay auctions, craigslist posts and lost abbey's new sections waiting for the next release? Nahh... I'll save that for the other BA folks ;)

Glad I had the opportunity to try this incredibly unique and rare beer. Thanks again, Matt - you've opened my door to the world of unique, American-made sours (I was going to say "pop by cherry", but it something about that just didn't seem right)!

Photo of RblWthACoz
4.32/5  rDev +2.6%
look: 4 | smell: 4.5 | taste: 4.5 | feel: 4 | overall: 4


Pours a very dark brown you can still see through with an almost non-existent tannish head. Nose is tart cherries with a minor funk. Flavor is funky. Very Flanders-like. Tart cherries on wood. Quite dry. I like the aftertaste of the lactic tones. Definitely get the barrel aged thing going on. Almost a vanilla tone in there. Feel is a bit thicker on liquid and carbonation is lower. This is a pretty hearty beer. I like it, but I think it'd be even better if it mellowed a bit. If you like Flanders style beers, you'll like this one.

Thanks to srroos for this one.

Photo of magictrokini
4.32/5  rDev +2.6%
look: 4 | smell: 4.5 | taste: 4.5 | feel: 4 | overall: 4

Pours cloudy brown with a nearly tan head. Cherrybomb aroma, with nice oak and bourbon. Taste is heavily cherries, but nice brown sugar, nuts, sour yeast, and alcohol round it out so it is not overwhelming. Good bourbon and cognac flavors come through as it warms. I know it says this is a Strong Ale, but it drinks like a liquer.

Photo of jjayjaye
3.74/5  rDev -11.2%
look: 3.5 | smell: 4.5 | taste: 3.5 | feel: 3.5 | overall: 3.5

Pours a cloudy cola brown with reddish hues with negligible fizzy light tan head and little lacing. The smell is an intense tart cherry vinegar. Another broad interpretation of style; i prefer the dark fruit variety. Adequately carbonated, the mouth feel is light and boldly tart. Full flavored, the tart cherry character is monolithic. The sourness is right on the edge of my personal envelop of tolerance. This one hasn't earned a place in my heart...but if you favor tart..knock yourself out. Disappointingly far from 'center style'...amen to Lew Bryson's words on the matter.

Currently on the Top 100....it's not going to last long on "the list" if you ask me.

Photo of drseamus
4.62/5  rDev +9.7%
look: 4 | smell: 4.5 | taste: 4.5 | feel: 5 | overall: 5

2008 Edition, served in my DFH snifter.

A: Deep rich brown with a good red tinge when held to the light. It had a white head initially but disappeared quickly leaving only a rim of foam.

S: The smell is bold and intense. Cherries float out of the glass and a touch of vinegar assaults my nostrils. Behind that a sweet malt lurks in the background.

T: Cherries and tartness right up front followed by a short but intense dryness with a ton of dustiness. I'd guess some Brett is to blame for that. Finish is dry but not nearly as much so as that quick burst. As it warms, the cherries diminish slightly and the tartness and vinegar increase.

M: When held in my mouth, I don't notice much carbonation. When I swallow or swish though, the carbonation causes a light tingling. Very smooth with ZERO evidence of any alcohol. If I had to complain about anything, I would like a touch more carbonation.

D: This isn't good, it's great. The tartness is good but not over the top. Nice balance between fruitiness and tartness.

Photo of egajdzis
4.7/5  rDev +11.6%
look: 5 | smell: 5 | taste: 4.5 | feel: 5 | overall: 4.5

Multiple samples, tasted fresh, and up to 5 yrs old!

Poured a deep dark brown color with a small tan head and nice lacing on the glass. Funky, sweet caramel, brett, tart apples some roast, cocoa, and pineapples. Roasty and tart taste, more apples, vinous, some strawberries and sweet finish. Fuckin awesome!

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 DrJay
4.37/5  rDev +3.8%
look: 4 | smell: 4.5 | taste: 4.5 | feel: 4.5 | overall: 4

2008. Got this one in a trade from todd1. Thanks!
Brown, coppery colour with a thin cap of beige bubbles that formed a thick collar and left a thin skim on top of the beer. Some lacing, not overly sticky. Earthy aroma, tobacco and wood, cherry pits and light bourbon, just a bit of sour cherry. Same in the flavour, but with a mild tartness up front and a hint of acetic acid character in the finish. Very earthy cherry flavour throughout with mild bourbon and vanilla towards the end. Mild caramel and brown sugar, but with a lot of fruity character in the forefront. Fairly acidic, but not overpowering, since there's some sweetness to provide balance. Quite complex, with a lot of wood and funk going on. Medium bodied with soft, creamy carbonation. Some dryness from tannins, mild alcohol warmth. Great stuff and very drinkable. Very nice balance too.

Cuvee De Tomme from The Lost Abbey
94 out of 100 based on 1,040 ratings.