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Red Poppy Ale | The Lost Abbey

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BA SCORE
94
outstanding
568 Reviews
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BEER STATS
Reviews:
568
Ratings:
1,907
Avg:
4.23
pDev:
17.26%
 
 
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569
Gots:
592
For Trade:
42
Red Poppy AleRed Poppy Ale
BEER INFO

Brewed by:
The Lost Abbey
California, United States | website

Style: Flanders Red Ale

Alcohol by volume (ABV): 5.50%

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.

Added by BeerBeing on 09-07-2007

User Reviews
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Reviews: 568 | Ratings: 1,907
Photo of joe1510
4/5  rDev -5.4%
look: 4 | smell: 4 | taste: 4 | feel: 4 | overall: 4

375ml

2009 Vintage

This bottle comes courtesy of the ever generous BitterBill, thanks again Bill! I was a little worried with the barely noticeable pop of the cork but a vigorous pour down the center of the glass produces a fingers worth of creamy beige head that slowly falls to a solid cap. Underneath lies a murky brown body that glows crimson when backlit. Some thin lacing gets left behind that eases back into the body over time.

The cherries have a much more candy-like aroma than I would have expected. They bring along a little tartness but the sweeter qualities are certainly there. A handful of earthy qualities make their presence known. Leather and reduced balsamic vinegar jump to mind immediately along with a rather rich, brown bread sort of maltiness.

The cherries are tarter on the tongue than in the nose but they still show off a candy-like sweetness to balance things out. The leathery quality is rich and goes well with the hefty balsamic vinegar notes. There's a solid backing of brown bread maltiness that evens this Flanders styled brew out well. The cherry tartness runs along the sides of my tongue but never reaches sour.

Although it took some doin' to get any noticeable carbonation it manages to come along nicely on the back of the tongue. The body has a light feel and the carbonation actually has a touch of prickliness on the back while pushing the beer through quickly.

The sweet and sour combo of this beer makes it an ideal thirst quencher in the summer months. The lighter body keeps Red Poppy flowing as well. This is a beer I could happily put away all day.

Lost Abbey is hit or miss with me and lately they've been a huge miss. Red Poppy managed to raise my opinion of them again. They can make a good beer when they show some effort and Red Poppy is one of the examples. Thanks for the bottle Bill, I really enjoyed this one!

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Photo of jcartamdg
4/5  rDev -5.4%
look: 4 | smell: 4 | taste: 4 | feel: 4 | overall: 4

Pours a reddish brown with a finger length head disapates quickly. Aroma of vinegar and funk, cherries not present in the nose. Taste follows nose but brings in sour cherries in finish. I like this beer a lot, it's smooth and delicious and right up there with the best Belgian representations of the style

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Photo of abeeronthebeach
4/5  rDev -5.4%
look: 4 | smell: 4 | taste: 4 | feel: 4 | overall: 4

A - Muddy brown.

S - Tart nose.

T - Less fruity and less sweet than Rodenbach Grand Cru. More aggresively sour. Very refreshing.

M - Fizzier than RGC.

O - Hugely overpriced, to the point where it makes me slightly angry. It's about twice the price of La Folie per oz, which is in turn almost twice the price of Rodenbach Grand Cru. You get nothing for that mark up. It is a good beer though. It's fizzy and sour which leaves it feeling pretty harsh.

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Photo of inlimbo77
4/5  rDev -5.4%
look: 4 | smell: 4 | taste: 4 | feel: 4 | overall: 4

Red Poppy '12
375ml
Lost Abbey tulip

A: Murky reddish brown color on the pour. Better carbonation that I expected and had read about. Nice little pop on the cork. And I did get a nice little head out of it.

S: Balsamic vinegar. Crap apples. Funk. Cherries. Typical

T: A good amount of tartness on the front of the palate. Then you get that apple cider vinegar flavor, but after having the Rodenbach Vintage '09 it wasn't as much. It's a nice dry finish.

M: Light to medium bodied beer. Very drinkable.

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Photo of LilBeerDoctor
4/5  rDev -5.4%
look: 4 | smell: 4 | taste: 4 | feel: 4 | overall: 4

Bottle courtesy of mreusch. Pours a dirty light brown with a small tan head. Aroma of yeasty funk, some cherry undertones. Flavor is sour and tart, with some acidity at first with light cherry fruits and cinnamon in the finish. This reminds me a bit of 3 Fonteinen Schaerbeekse. Very nice.
Aroma: 8/10
Appearance: 4/5
Flavor: 8/10
Palate: 4/5
Overall: 16/20
4.0/5

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Photo of oglmcdgl
4/5  rDev -5.4%
look: 4 | smell: 4 | taste: 4 | feel: 4 | overall: 4

On tap at monks during the lost abbey event.

A- almost three fingers of tanish head a top a ruddy deep red brown brew. Head leaves no lace or stick.

A- good amount of earth red wine vinegar and some sweet and sour cherries but to a lesser extent. The cherries don't give a big bright sour they come off more subdued. Rich malt backbone giving a darker bread touch.

T- opens up with a light sweet and sour cherry and funky oak hit with a touch of red wine vin. Malts come off sweet with some dark brown sugar and bread. Light acidity not the punch I was hoping for, more of a earthy thing going on.

M- a bit above medium in body and lightly carbed. Solid pucker but nothing outstanding.

O- its a good red but the cherries seem to be a bit over the hill and lacking the fresh sour hit. I would like to try the base beer without the cherries and see what that's like. Up against rodenbach gc its got some work to do.

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Photo of starshockey9
4/5  rDev -5.4%
look: 4 | smell: 4 | taste: 4 | feel: 4 | overall: 4

Not going to do the average rating, all I'm going to say is this is a fresh 2014 bottle. I had a '13 semi fresh bottle maybe 2-3 months after it was released last year and it was great. This years needs a little age on it but it can easily be a high 4 with some age.

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Photo of n2185
3.99/5  rDev -5.7%
look: 3 | smell: 4 | taste: 4 | feel: 4.5 | overall: 4

A: pours a brownish-red with a finger of off-white head that fades into a thin ring with no lacing.

S: lots of tart and sour fruit up front followed by funky farmhouse aromas. There are sweet candy sugar notes as well.

T: lots of sour and tart flavors here with fruity and funky notes dominating. The finish is tart and slightly sweet.

M: light body with mid-high carbonation, this beer is light and dry.

O: a good beer overall. Not extremely complex, but enjoyable and thankfully carbonated.

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Photo of BeerFMAndy
3.99/5  rDev -5.7%
look: 3.5 | smell: 4.5 | taste: 4 | feel: 4 | overall: 3.5

12.7 oz cork and caged bottle split and poured into a Duvel tulip.
5% ABV, 2011

Thanks to Sweemzander for sharing this one for another one of our Tickerazzi events!

A - Hazy dark brown with a quickly fading light tan head. Patchy lace clings to the glass.

S - Awesome bruin aroma of mild vinegar and brown malt. Wood, oak barrel is hinted at with a pinch of sweetness. A swirl brings out some faint wild yeast funk.

T - Spiciness and cherry overshadows the rest of the beer a but too much but nice vinegar sourness comes through the finish with a wild yeast complexity on the back end.

M - Highly carbonated and medium-bodied, Red Poppy is mildly tart with a faint vinegar sour finish.

O - For $16? Are they nuts? While it's a good beer, it's certainly not worth that in the least. Decent and drinkable but hardly worth getting again, for me anyway.

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Photo of EgadBananas
3.99/5  rDev -5.7%
look: 4 | smell: 4.25 | taste: 3.75 | feel: 4.25 | overall: 4

Pours a mahogany red, light haze, yellow colored head, dissipates quickly. Funky aroma with a mild sour nose, slight fruit notes, caramel and bread with some acidity. Carries a much similar taste, lightly sweet with fruit notes, a tart, lightly sour taste, with some bready funk notes. Lighter body, carbonation was good(especially for Lost Abbey).

Enjoyable, but Love Child 3 toaster in the night was better.

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Photo of kevanb
3.99/5  rDev -5.7%
look: 4 | smell: 4.25 | taste: 3.75 | feel: 4.25 | overall: 4

375ml bottle, Vintage 2012 printed on the bottle, poured into a Lost Abbey Teku.

The beer pours a dark burgundy color, very opaque, touches of ruby when struck by the light, a few bubbles can be seen rising to the top of the glass. Atop the beer is a finger high, bone colored head, light and fizzy that recedes quickly leaving behind a touch of film and no lacing. The aroma is of pungent sour cherry, barnyard funk, woody oak, light vanilla with touches of brown grain lingering behind. Sour cherry hits the tongue straight away, acidic and vinegary, funk, vanilla, dark, sweet grain with some mild funk coming out. There is a nice amount of barrel character on the tongue leaving behind some pleasant oak flavors that also bring out a touch of char. There is potential for a nice pie filling-esque flavor here, but the acidity and vinegar flavors really hurt this beer. The body is very lively, medium to high carbonation that really dances on the tongue, the finish is rather smooth and moderately dry.

Verdict: A good rendition of a Flanders Red from The Lost Abbey. Certainly not their finest work, but this is sure to satisfy anyone who enjoys a sour beer or who loves cherries.

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Photo of philbe311
3.98/5  rDev -5.9%
look: 4.5 | smell: 4 | taste: 4 | feel: 3.5 | overall: 4

I've been eager to try this one for a while...

A - Three fingers worth of active audibly fizzy airy light tan colored head with a bit of a rocky top... Decent retention ultimately gives way to a full lacing and moderately thick collar... The color is almost aubergine with lots of ruby red highlights when back lit... Some very rapid streaks of small bubbled carbonation can be seen towards the top of the glass... Lots of lacing clings to the glass...

S - Rich and complex from get go... Cherries... Lots of oak notes... A light but biting tartness... Perhaps some red grapes as well... Light vinegar notes... A hint of vanilla... Black berries... A moderate funkiness throughout... Epic label and presentation...

T - Lots of oak and wood and the forefront... Some lite vanilla notes... The cherries take a distant back seat... Perhaps some raspberries and currants... A bit unbalanced...

M - Medium bodied... Lively... Loaded with unrelenting carbonation... The finish is exceedingly dry yet saliva inducing... Wakes up the senses with each sip...

D - A solid Flanders Red Ale that is an assault on senses... Potent would be an understatement... There is nothing subtle about it... Not my favorite for a style, but a rather extreme American interruption on the style...

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Photo of yeahnatenelson
3.98/5  rDev -5.9%
look: 4.5 | smell: 4 | taste: 4 | feel: 3.5 | overall: 4

Imbibed at SmallBar on Port/LA Night during Chicago Craft Beer Week.

Appearance -- Pours rusty brown with witha finger fo creamy parchment head. Incredible amount of lacing for the style. Very photogenic.

Smell -- Tart cherry, cider vinegar, wet oak, lightly roasted malt, and a pinch of cocoa malt sweetness. Nice.

Taste -- Lots of bright acetic tartness up front: lemon, granny smith, cider vinegar. Inhaling through the nose made for a singeing sensation. Tart cherry and unripened berry fruitiness lent an additional layer of sour flavor. Rich dark malt evoking wet earth and cocoa.

Mouthfeel -- Medium-light in body with gentle prickly carbonation, bordering creamy. However, this could be the fault of the establishment.

Overall -- Very nice, but it wasn't the revelation that I had been hoping for. While being quite sour, the tartness was a detriment to the beer as a whole, somewhat diminishing the cherry addition and the malty/sour interplay that is the hallmark of the style. Still, the cherries were nice, and the definite highlight of this beer.

While I didn't consider cost as a factor for my review, the question must be asked: is a 350mL bottle of this worth as much as a 650mL bottle of La Folie? Methinks not.

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Photo of GbVDave
3.97/5  rDev -6.1%
look: 3.5 | smell: 4 | taste: 4 | feel: 4 | overall: 4

Poured from a corked and caged 12.7oz bottle into a white wine glass. Special thanks to Tom for the hook-up!

A: Tiny pop when I pulled the cork. Barely any pressure behind it. Pours a murky dark carmel brown with a thin layer of off-white foam on top. The head quickly disappears and leaves a pretty lifeless looking beer.

S: Vinegar, sodden oak, and tart cherries. Quite fragrant.

T: See above with a slight (and welcome) sweet caramel flavor. Tart green apple and more oak than in the nose.

M: Tart, tangy, and quite acidic. Pretty darn astringent.

D: Dry, acidic, and actually quite refreshing. Gonna need a drink of water after this one.

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Photo of jimixr
3.97/5  rDev -6.1%
look: 3.5 | smell: 4 | taste: 4 | feel: 4 | overall: 4

375ml corked and caged bottle from the 2011 release. Drank from a Bells tulip.

A- Pours out a hazy looking reddish brown colored body with a full two fingers of fluffy light tan head.The head falls very quickly and leaves virtually nothing in the way of lacing.

S- Cherries are the dominant feature here. There is a fair amount of funk in the nose and a hint of barrel. A very nice aroma.

T- The cherries are again a dominant factor, but they seem to stay more subtle than the nose would indicate. Some acidic sourness. Funk and oak barrel are also there,

M- light bodied and medium carbonated. dry finish.

O- This is a very flavorful beer. Its a little to pricey for me, but I really enjoyed this one. I still have one more, but I will be holding it back for a while.

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Photo of Trilogy31
3.97/5  rDev -6.1%
look: 3.5 | smell: 4 | taste: 4 | feel: 4 | overall: 4

Pours a opaque light cola brown with an old gold coloration at the rim. Lightly carbonated though the bottle was a bit of a gusher. Nose has a heavy scent of red wine vinegar, tart cherry, a touch of vanilla as well as a healthy dose of barnyard funk. The taste is very clean if a bit one dimensional. The funk is gone and replaced by bright tart acidity, vinegar and a small whiff of cherry. Very drinkable and refreshing, could see it pairing well with a nice cheese plate.

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Photo of Wasatch
3.97/5  rDev -6.1%
look: 3.5 | smell: 4 | taste: 4 | feel: 4 | overall: 4

Thanks goes out to Bitterbill for this brew.

12.7 oz.
2009 Edition
Caged/Corked

Poured into a tulip a brownish color, not much carbonation at all, tiny fizzy off-white head, if any, basically not much sticky lacing. The nose is malty, soury, cherries, slight spice. The taste is malty, pretty soury, cherries, and some spice. Medium body. Drinkable, even though not much carbonation, it still is tasty, thanks Bill.

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Photo of UCLABrewN84
3.97/5  rDev -6.1%
look: 3.5 | smell: 4 | taste: 4 | feel: 4 | overall: 4

Bottle pour sampled at mrbubbler's tasting.

2011 vintage.

Pours a clear brown-orange with a 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 of sour cherry, vinegar, and funk. Taste is the same with a mineral flavor on the finish. This beer has a good level of carbonation with a crisp mouthfeel. Overall, this is a good beer with some nice aromas and flavors.

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Photo of Ineedabeerhere
3.97/5  rDev -6.1%
look: 3.5 | smell: 4 | taste: 4 | feel: 4 | overall: 4

Included in the epic tasting on 6.13 but I have had this before a couple times. Review includes multiple vintages.

Hazy, Ruby color with a faded cherry colored head. It's incredible how much this beer fades with time. First time I had this beer it was the night before EBF 09 (it was about a year old, 08 batch) and it didn't seem to be the beer that it should. Although it was still solid, the aroma was a shadow of its former self. I didn't realize until I traded for an 09 bottle and had it fresh out the gate. Worlds apart- flavor between a fresh bottle and a year aged one were much more similar than the aromas were (if that makes sense).

When this beer is fresh, it has a wonderful cherry flavor, nice level of acidity and sourness that compliments the fruit notes. Carbonation is appropriate (spritzer-like at times), and with a low ABV, red poppy is pleasantly drinkable. I look forward to trying future batches.

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Photo of steve8robin
3.97/5  rDev -6.1%
look: 3.5 | smell: 4 | taste: 4 | feel: 4 | overall: 4

Not a huge sour fan, but excited to try this one. Found at a local beer store. 12.7oz bottle...

A: A deep dark autumn brown with a slight ruby color blended in. A 1 inch tan head that fades very quickly to tiny bubbles atop the brew. Decent.

S: Smells of huge tart cherry upfront with some mild bready scents in the middle and more funk on the backend. Good.

T: I get an acidic cherry upfront that quickly faints into a hint of wheat and barley and some more tartness lingers on the backend. A lot more drinkable for a sour. Still puckering, but the pucker fades quickly. Good.

M: Medium body with a nice carbonation. A tart puckering finish. Good.

O: All in all, this is a good sour. For not being a sour guy, I enjoy this. Definitely try if you like the style. If you're not a sour fan, but open to it, try this if you have access.

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Photo of busternuggz
3.97/5  rDev -6.1%
look: 3.5 | smell: 4 | taste: 4 | feel: 4 | overall: 4

Poured from a 12.7 oz bottle into a Belgian glass. 2010 vintage.
Has a nice ruby-brown color, leaves a thin pinkish-white head that dissipates quickly. Leaves some spotty lacing and coats the glass thinly with a swirl.
Showed some smells of cherries, had sort of a tart cherry pie quality, along with a mixture of red wine and balsamic vinegar, some oakiness, and a little bit of strawberry preserves.
The taste comes on with a tart, somewhat earthy punch, red wine/balsamic vinegar, tart cherries, and a little rhubarb. Ends tart and crisp.
Pretty carbonated but not too much. Has a fairly thin texture but leaves a nice coating on the tongue that lasts a little while after swallowing.
The tartness makes you pause a bit but it's pretty smooth.
This one definitely has classic oud bruin characters but lacks some richness. I liked Kuhnenn Old Brune as a cherry oud bruin better. I would like to try an older vintage some time.

Unnecessary side note: a milk stout tastes weird after two oud bruins.

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Photo of drumrboy22
3.97/5  rDev -6.1%
look: 3.5 | smell: 4 | taste: 4 | feel: 4 | overall: 4

Received from Sinners Club '09. Poured from 375mL bottle into Lost Abbey chalice. Beer was a ruby red color, with a very, very small head. Light, slow carbonation and no lacing.

Aroma was tart cherries, vinegar and oak.

Taste was very tart cherries, vinegar, wood and light caramel. Very good beer.

Good drinkability and a very well crafted beer. Only complaint was lack of carbonation. While there was a very small amount of carbonation present, a little more would have really added to this beer.

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Photo of dbc5
3.97/5  rDev -6.1%
look: 4.5 | smell: 3.75 | taste: 4 | feel: 4 | overall: 4

12.7 ounce corked and cage bottle poured into Southern Tier Pumking Tulip.

A: Pours a brown with ruby highlights. Moderate pour yields about a 1 finger cream colored head. Even after receding, a nice froth sticks around on the top of this beer and laces its way down the glass.

S: Definite cherries, but also picking up a surprising amount of the barrel, a burnt character, and even some caramel. The burnt character is a bit strange and throws me off just a bit. Doesn't smell as sour as I was expecting, might even smell more funky than sour. The nose suggests this might not be as dry as some other sours.

T: Cherries are very present and the sourness is far more apparent on the palate than it is on the nose. Do taste some of the vanilla and even a bit of the caramel that was apparent on the nose at the end of this one. As suspected, not as dry as some other sours. Cherries are the standout in this one.

M: Medium to high carbonation, medium body.

O: A really enjoyable beer, and one of the more cherry forward sours I have had. It really showcases the featured ingredient. I could stand for this one being a slight bit drier on the finish, but that is just my personal preference with sours.

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Photo of jsanford
3.96/5  rDev -6.4%
look: 3.5 | smell: 5 | taste: 3.5 | feel: 3.5 | overall: 4

375ml bottle poured into a Tulip Glass. 2011 vintage. Big Flanders Oud Bruin fan, been looking forward to this for some time.

A - Pours a muddy mahogany with a 2-inch head of off-white foam that recedes quickly (and loudly, lotsa fizzing) to a slight haze and thin ring.
S - Man, I can smell this from across the room! The sour cherries dominate, with a healthy dose of red wine vinegar for the acidity. Definitely the most cherry-forward Oud Bruin I've had, but leather, tobacco, and a good amount of oak make themselves known as well. Smells wonderful!
T - Flavor is a bit subdued, really disappointing after such an amazing nose. More tart cherry, with flavors of brown sugar, vinegar, tobacco, and high quantities of oak. Taste is a bit muddy, not as clean and sharp as I'd like, and I feel the oak presence is a bit much. Damn, I wanted to love this!
M - Light-bodied with very sharp, high carbonation. Finding this to be a bit over-carbonated, too sharp for my liking, it kinda kills the flavor a bit.
O - I enjoyed this, but was hoping for much more. Initially I thought it would be a challenge to Oude Tart, but doesn't come anywhere close. Still, it scratched my Oud Bruin itch nicely!

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Photo of shrek806
3.95/5  rDev -6.6%
look: 4 | smell: 4 | taste: 4 | feel: 3.5 | overall: 4

Thanks to Stupac2 for this one.

Poured from a 375ml cork and caged bottle into a pair of mini Duvel snifters.

The pour is a medium brown with minimal red/brown head and no visible lacing. Not alot going on here.

The smell is "Funkeeee". I smell a hint of cheese with maybe some berries, maybe raspberry.

The taste is super-tart and a little sugary. I can not place the sweetness. I am thinking maybe raisins that I am tasting. Although the smell was funky, the taste is much more complicated.

The mouthfeel is quite flat. There is some bubble action going on, but not alot. It starts out quite tart and pucker-esque, but finishes with the taste of yellow raisins, with a hint of unripe blueberries.

The overall drinkability for me is about a 3.5. It is a little to tart and I am not a huge fan of the raisin taste.

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Red Poppy Ale from The Lost Abbey
94 out of 100 based on 568 ratings.