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Red Poppy Ale - The Lost Abbey

Not Rated.
Red Poppy AleRed Poppy Ale

Displayed for educational use only; do not reuse.
BA SCORE
96
world-class

1,660 Ratings
THE BROS
95
world-class

(view ratings)
Ratings: 1,660
Reviews: 532
rAvg: 4.28
pDev: 9.58%
Wants: 526
Gots: 499 | FT: 34
Brewed by:
The Lost Abbey visit their website
California, United States

Style | ABV
Flanders Red Ale |  5.50% ABV

Availability: Rotating

Notes/Commercial Description:
Perhaps no country embraces the use of fruit in beers more so than Belgium. Numerous traditional as well as regional specialty ales are infused with every sort of fruit imaginable. In this way, the flavor of the fruit becomes especially prominent.

Red Poppy Ale is a veritable celebration of Sour Cherries in an explosion of aromas and tastes. Brewed from a brown ale base and aged in our oak barrels for over 6 months, this beer is not for the faint of heart.

The Golden Poppy is the state flower of California and the Red Poppy is found in Flanders Fields where our inspiration for this beer comes from.

(Beer added by: BeerBeing on 09-07-2007)
Beer: Ratings & Reviews
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Ratings: 1,660 | Reviews: 532 | Display Reviews Only:
Reviews by madvermin:
Photo of madvermin
4.4/5  rDev +2.8%
look: 4.5 | smell: 4 | taste: 4.5 | feel: 4.5 | overall: 4.5

Pours a reddish-tinged brown with a very coarsely bubbled but frothy head that is rocky and quite active. Bubbles are popping while more rise from the bottom of the glass. Lace is extensive, and the head dissipates to a one finger cap that stays for the life of the glass. Very pretty.

Cherries are the dominant aroma, as expected. Semi-sweet with a tart kick, the cherries are accompanied by a bit of funk and yeast. A touch of caramel from the brown ale base comes through. It's mostly cherries though, and they are well done.

The first taste is an incredible mouth-puckering tartness that is nothing short of spectacular. After the mouth adjusts to it a bit, very sour cherries with a bit of funk are the main tastes to be had. Some wood also comes out. The fruit quality in this beer is some of the best I've experienced.

Mouthfeel is acidic but not harsh. It's very sour, but in a good way, and your mouth never feels like it's being attacked. I like that after the tartness fades, your mouth is almost as good as new; some sours will leave your cheeks devoid of moisture and tissue, but not this one. Drinkability is aided by this, along with the refreshing nature of the cherries in each sip. A tiny droplet is enough to bring about the sour beginning to the beer, and that's good since the beer is so expensive. Well worth it in my opinion though.

madvermin, Apr 28, 2011
More User Reviews:
Photo of tectactoe
4.25/5  rDev -0.7%

tectactoe, Jan 09, 2014
Photo of ricke
3.9/5  rDev -8.9%
look: 4 | smell: 4 | taste: 4 | feel: 3 | overall: 4

A: A strangely looking murky reddish brown color with a minimal tanned head that quickly fades away to a small ring of lacings.

S: Tart cherry notes and an interesting mix of bretty funk and oak barrels. The barrel notes are more prominent than expected. Hints of other fruity notes and caramel reminiscent of an Oud bruin. An interesting and to large extent good taste, but it's not excellent.

T: The taste is actually quite acidic with sour cherry notes from start to finish. Some complementary caramel-like sweetness. Notes of wood and oak barrels. Mild funky notes and notes of berries. The finish is tart with notes of brett and cherries and a hint of minerals. After a while, the acidity mellows out a bit, letting more sweetness come through.

M: The body is quite light, too light I think. The carbonation is slightly too mellow, I would have liked it to be a little livelier and sparkling.

D: Good, but not fantastic. I've come across many comments about this one comparing it to a lambic, but too me, it is more of a sour, fruit-infused Oud bruin than a fruit lambic (which is what it's categorized as on this site). It's not as complex as some of the better comparable Belgians, but still a very impressive beer. Nice bland of tartness, barrel character and fruit flavors.

ricke, Sep 22, 2009
Photo of t2grogan
4.5/5  rDev +5.1%

t2grogan, Oct 08, 2014
Photo of MadScientist
4.54/5  rDev +6.1%
look: 4.25 | smell: 4.75 | taste: 4.5 | feel: 4.5 | overall: 4.5

A: A dark copper with a garnet hue. The head is tan, somewhat rocky and not long for this world which I blame on the high acidity.

S: Red currents, tart cherries and some leather. A light touch of barnyard funk.

T: Supper tart and fruit with a strong acidic tartness and fruit flavors of red current and tart cherries. The oak barrel comes through next mostly with vanilla but a touch of cinnamon. There is some malt rounding out the mild but the balance here is very tart with a dry finish. Lingering fruit flavors and tartness.

M: medium bodied with a strong carbonation.

O: A sour beer of arrival, one should love tart sours before approaching this one. Tart, fruity, vanilla, tart and oak with a touch of vinegar acidity.

MadScientist, Jun 18, 2013
Photo of CavemanRamblin
4.5/5  rDev +5.1%

CavemanRamblin, Nov 16, 2014
Photo of Schlais
4.25/5  rDev -0.7%

Schlais, Apr 26, 2012
Photo of weatherdog
4.5/5  rDev +5.1%
look: 4.5 | smell: 5 | taste: 4.5 | feel: 4.5 | overall: 4

A big thanks to Tony for opening this up during a March tasting.

It pours a cloudy copper with deep red highlights at the edges. A bone colored head recedes quickly into a nice ring of bubbles around the perimeter

The nose of this beer is exactly what I dream of when I open up an example of my favorite style. It has a nice balance of acetic, cherry, oak, and sweet notes. The addition of actual cherries in this beer leave more cherry aroma than I've had in others but it is a welcome addition. The smell was so inviting I just kept smelling it for several minutes before I dived into the actual liquid.

The cherry is definitely present in the taste but it isn't overpowering. The tart and sour notes have are really well integrated with a fair amount of vinegar taste but not too much to label it over the top. My only gripe with the flavor is that the cherry flavors and the sourness mask a lot of the base beer and I wold like to have more of the brown ale show through.

The mouthfeel is on the lighter side and the present carbonation compliments the beer nicely. it is pretty dry which I really like and allows a mouth puckering beer to be drank without much palette fatigue.

weatherdog, Apr 07, 2010
Photo of Dabeel
4/5  rDev -6.5%

Dabeel, Jul 11, 2013
Photo of SkiBum22
4.25/5  rDev -0.7%

SkiBum22, Apr 04, 2013
Photo of Ben7773
4.25/5  rDev -0.7%

Ben7773, Jul 20, 2014
Photo of orbitalr0x
4.22/5  rDev -1.4%
look: 4 | smell: 4 | taste: 4.5 | feel: 4 | overall: 4

2010 vintage - new style 375ml bottle: 4.5/4/4/4.5/4

Pours a deep brown color with red highlights and two fingers of bubbly khaki head on top. Aromas of dense oak and wood meet a bright sour cherry. Tart, earthy accents run throughout along with a touch of spice. Nice!

First sip brings crispness and dry oak flavors upfront. Tannic with a solid kick of tart cherry. Spice and earthy funk but the wood has really seeped in this year. Flows down dry and puckering with lingering cherry accents.

Crisp with solid carbonation. A good sipper and a tasty treat to savor. Oak seems more forward this year but overall it's still a tasty treat.

2008 vintage:

Pours into my glass a deep burgundy red with a creamy half inch of light tan head sitting atop the brew. Plenty of active carbonation too. Aromas jump out with bold tart cherries upfront. Nice tannic woody, oak aromas meld in alongside some funky, cheesy brett characteristics. A subtle malty, caramel sweetness lurks underneath. Really enticing.

First sip brings a nice crisp malt with a hint of caramel upfront that is immediately met by a rush of vibrant tart cherry flavors. It almost has a syrupy quality to it as it moves into woody, oak barrel flavors. I get a sweetness upfront that melds into a sourness on the way down. Funky, sort of cheesy brett flavors mix in as the brew finishes with lingering cherry afterthoughts. Yum.

Mouthfeel is on the lighter side with a smooth effervescence of tight bubbly carbonation as it flows down. It's quite refreshing with a nice interplay between the sweet and sour. A bottle of this to myself is truly a treat and I only wish I had more. A tasty treat of a beer from Lost Abbey.

orbitalr0x, May 30, 2008
Photo of Kjanisch7
4.34/5  rDev +1.4%
look: 4.5 | smell: 3 | taste: 4.75 | feel: 4.75 | overall: 4.5

A: A murky red-brown with a tan head.

S: Sour cherry with some funk. Had a far different, somewhat unappealing smell which was unlike most sours I've had. Made me unsure about the beer.

T: Super acidic with tart fruits. Some barrel taste coming through. Awesome sour.

M: Strong carbonation, but a nice medium body.

O: This beer was solid. Loved drinking it. The only thing that threw me off was the smell. Not sure if it was good that it didn't smell like a sour or not, but it wasn't for me. I typically enjoy the strong standard sour smell.

Kjanisch7, Jul 15, 2013
Photo of heddar33
5/5  rDev +16.8%

heddar33, Sep 09, 2012
Photo of warnerry
4.23/5  rDev -1.2%
look: 4 | smell: 4 | taste: 4.5 | feel: 4 | overall: 4

2012 bottling

A - Nice pop as the cork comes out. Pours very deep red/brown with almost four fingers of tan head with a slight pink hue. Head has very good retention and leaves some nice lacing. I am surprised how dark this is.

S - Tart cherries, a nice amount of oak, and a good funky base. Small amount of balsamic vinegar.

T - Definitely tart, but not bracingly sour. Also quite a bit of bitterness in the taste, especially on the finish. Earthy and funky with tart cherries. Lots of oak on the finish. Very tasty. Thought it would have more fruit since it is this year's vintage, but I enjoyed it as is.

M - Medium mouthfeel, maybe a bit on the heavy side for the style, but I that isn't a negative.

O - Nice one from Lost Abbey, but not quite up to Rodenbach Grand Cru or Cuvee de Jacobins for the style. Looking forward to seeing what some age does this to this.

warnerry, Jun 09, 2012
Photo of Todd
4.25/5  rDev -0.7%

Todd, Sep 14, 2013
Photo of Callmecoon
4/5  rDev -6.5%

Callmecoon, May 23, 2013
Photo of JakerLou
4.5/5  rDev +5.1%

JakerLou, Apr 05, 2014
Photo of Edvice04
5/5  rDev +16.8%

Edvice04, Apr 13, 2014
Photo of badbeer
3.78/5  rDev -11.7%
look: 4 | smell: 4 | taste: 3.5 | feel: 4 | overall: 4

Reddish brown color with a nice off-white head that retained pretty good. I got some cherries and cherry pits in the aroma, also a fair amount of sourness and maybe a touch of cinnamon. Taste was sour, some cherries, but didn't really do much to impress me. The complexity of the aroma didn't translate as well into the flavor for me. It was enjoyable, but again, it didn't really stand out to me. Fairly light body with medium carbonation. It was good, but I don't think I'll be worrying about getting this again, especially not at the price. Thanks to doubleo for the chance to try it.

badbeer, Dec 28, 2008
Photo of Mora2000
4.33/5  rDev +1.2%
look: 4 | smell: 4.5 | taste: 4.5 | feel: 4 | overall: 4

Thanks to bmwgirl9606 for sending me this bottle.

2010 vintage. The beer pours a slightly hazy brown color with an off-white head. The aroma is tart with some oak, vanilla, brown sugar and cherry. The flavor is heavy on the tart cherries with some oak and lemons mixed in as well. There is also a nice sweetness that resembles brown sugar. Medium mouthfeel and medium carbonation. An excellent beer. So happy I got to try this one.

Mora2000, Jun 01, 2010
Photo of olradetbalder
3.5/5  rDev -18.2%

olradetbalder, Nov 13, 2014
Photo of fenlop54
3.25/5  rDev -24.1%

fenlop54, Oct 29, 2014
Photo of fo1ksguitar
4.25/5  rDev -0.7%

fo1ksguitar, Oct 18, 2012
Photo of Altenor
3.75/5  rDev -12.4%

Altenor, Jun 28, 2013
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Red Poppy Ale from The Lost Abbey
96 out of 100 based on 1,660 ratings.