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Red Poppy Ale - The Lost Abbey

Red Poppy AleRed Poppy Ale

Displayed for educational use only; do not reuse.
BA SCORE
95
world-class

1,422 Ratings
THE BROS
95
world-class

(view ratings)
Ratings: 1422
Reviews: 517
rAvg: 4.27
pDev: 9.84%


Brewed by:
The Lost Abbey visit their website
California, United States

Style | ABV
Flanders Red Ale |  6.50% ABV

Availability: Winter

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.

(Beer added by: BeerBeing on 09-07-2007)
Beer: Ratings & Reviews
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Ratings: 1,422 | Reviews: 517 | Show All Ratings:
Photo of LambicPentameter
LambicPentameter

Kansas

3.93/5  rDev -8%
look: 3.75 | smell: 4.25 | taste: 3.75 | feel: 4 | overall: 4

Enjoyed out of a 12.7 oz brown bottle with cork and cage that has the contours of a miniature 750 mL wine bottle. No bottle dating anywhere to be found, but the label looks crisp and new, so I'm guessing my bottle of this winter seasonal is from the most recent winter (2013-14).

Appearance - Pours a murky burgundy-maroon body that lets very little light through. It seems like there is a fair amount of particulate suspended in the liquid as well--perhaps due to a careless pour on my part. Atop the body sits a tan colored head about a finger and a half thick with a mix of large and smaller bubbles making for a pocked surface. Eventually it settles to about a half finger of perma-foam that leaves almost no lacing on the side of the glass as I drink it down.

Smell - Definite vinous qualities abound, with notes of sour cherry and more generic fruit acidity, red wine vinegar and musty wood aromas. Some underlying funkiness adds depth to the smell, preventing it from becoming a sour bomb.

Taste - Unfortunately, the flavor is not quite as rich and complex as the nose suggested it would be. The dominant characteristics are the sour cherry fruitiness with some sweet n' sour notes alongside a brisk vinegar astringency on the palate. The oaky elements and musty funk are not quite as forward as I would have hoped. All the same, this is an incredibly tasty beer and I love the drying finish that leaves me seeking the next swig sooner than later.

Mouthfeel - Medium-bodied and high carbonation, with a prickly, actively carbonated feel to the tongue. As previously noted, the finish is quite dry, defiant to the sweet fruit that is used to make this beer tick.

Overall, a more than competent offering on the Flanders Red Ale style, and one that I would gladly buy again were there not a similar option that I prefer slightly that is more readily available and comes in a 750 mL bottle instead of a 375 mL and for only a couple dollars more. Still, one that any fan of the vast tradition of sour-tasting beers from Belgium should try at least once.

Serving type: bottle

04-16-2014 15:42:58 | More by LambicPentameter
Photo of pfhanlon
pfhanlon

Massachusetts

4.58/5  rDev +7.3%
look: 4.5 | smell: 5 | taste: 4.5 | feel: 4.25 | overall: 4.5

A - Pours as a dark amber and mahogany with athick head of tan foam. Decent retention but eventually subsides to a fairly thick ring around the rim. Leaves some spotty lacing.

S - A complex mix of smells including malt and a strong cherry aroma from the bottle. Less fruity in the glass.

T - More malty character on the backend which slides into a slightly sour finish.

M - Lighter side of medium bodied. Slick watery mouthfeel with wonderful carbonation.

O - A well balanced and executed ale.

Serving type: bottle

04-13-2014 18:10:55 | More by pfhanlon
Photo of dar482
dar482

New York

4.44/5  rDev +4%
look: 4.25 | smell: 4.25 | taste: 4.5 | feel: 4.5 | overall: 4.5

The beer comes in a dark reddish brown.

The aroma has tart cherries, a Flanders red fruitiness and tart vinegar.

The flavor follows with tons of tartness in the front along with red tart cherries. There is a tinge of sweetness along with some vinegar tart qualities.

A very tart and fruit forward version of the Flanders red style. Delicious stuff.

Serving type: bottle

04-08-2014 02:58:34 | More by dar482
Photo of ALSAIL
ALSAIL

Washington

4.24/5  rDev -0.7%
look: 4 | smell: 4.25 | taste: 4.25 | feel: 4.25 | overall: 4.25

Fresh from tap, served in a tulip glass. Poured a light coppery brown with a fine head that lingered. Smelled tart fruit, cherries and plums? Moderate to high carbonation, on the thin side. Tart sour cherries with oak in the back, dry tart finish. I'm not overly familiar with these, but I really enjoyed this one.

Serving type: on-tap

04-03-2014 02:32:01 | More by ALSAIL
Photo of FitnessForBeer
FitnessForBeer

California

4.88/5  rDev +14.3%
look: 4.5 | smell: 5 | taste: 5 | feel: 4.5 | overall: 4.75

Served in a snifter, I need to get some lost Abby teku...

A: pours a very dark reddish brown, cloudy, finger worth of head
S: smells like a Flanders red, light cherry like baking cherries. Vanilla oak is also coming through
T: amazing, you can taste the very tart cherry mixed with the sweetness of the beer. It's like baking cherries though that are very tart not really sweet. You can also taste some oak flavors popping though. As it warms I get more of the oak flavor mixed with cherries, tartness calms down along with the sweetness. I would serve this cold at first and sip and enjoy more as it warms.
M: the high carbonation suits this style very and gives that tartness an extra kick and prickly feeling
O: absolutely phenomenal take on this style by lost abbey. I wish it was a little less expensive but well worth it to taste this beer. I have to say I like this better than the classic of this beer style, Duchesse.

Serving type: bottle

04-02-2014 03:55:13 | More by FitnessForBeer
Photo of starshockey9
starshockey9

New Jersey

4/5  rDev -6.3%
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.

Serving type: bottle

03-31-2014 02:30:04 | More by starshockey9
Photo of MEsoJD
MEsoJD

California

4.15/5  rDev -2.8%
look: 4 | smell: 4.5 | taste: 4 | feel: 4.5 | overall: 4

[Tulip Glass]

I: I'm familiar with Lost Abbey Beers, but I believe I haven't logged a review on any of their brews. My most enjoyed ales from them has to be their sours like, "cuvee de tomm". Anyway I picked up some of this Red Poppy Ale hearing of it's reputation. So lets dig in!

B: [5 % ABV 12.7 OZ Bottle date. none to be found] I really like this bottles subtle presentation. It's straight to the point(ingredients, abv, nice art, size, location, etc ), but does leave some info to be desired... No back story or bottle date.

A: A deep murky brown body with a foamy head, slow dissipation, and good lacing.

S: Smells of sour/tart cherries and plums. Pretty pungent.

T: Upfront your hit with sour/tart/acidic cherries throughout with subtle presence of oak in the background/finish. Bread malt and caramel can also be detected.

M: Medium body, high carbonation, crisp/slight slick finish, and low apparent alcohol.

O: Good beer that will satisfy your sour craving. The balance of cherry and oak is very nice. The attention to detail in this beer is very apparent. It would be amazing if it had a bigger since of caramel, but other than that, I'm satisfied. I would recommend and buy again.

Serving type: bottle

03-28-2014 06:29:59 | More by MEsoJD
Photo of JohnG190
JohnG190

New York

4.25/5  rDev -0.5%
look: 4.25 | smell: 4.25 | taste: 4.25 | feel: 4.25 | overall: 4.25

Pours a deep mahogany with a quickly dissipating cherry-tinged head. Aromas of sour cherry, melon and funk with hints of oak and vanilla. Gobs of sour on the tongue, followed by dark stone fruit. Very dry on the finish. Light bodied with lots of carbonation. Overall, a very complex and refreshing Flanders Red Ale!

Serving type: bottle

03-26-2014 23:55:43 | More by JohnG190
Photo of neurobot01
neurobot01

California

3.69/5  rDev -13.6%
look: 3.75 | smell: 4.25 | taste: 3.5 | feel: 3.75 | overall: 3.5

Poured out of an undated bottle (purchased ~1 month prior) into a 16oz snifter.

Appearance: Murky brown, with a yellowish head that holds steady throughout at about 1cm.

Smell: Some cherry, generic tart, a little vanilla. Smells like a tangy Dr. Pepper. Fresh-sawn lumber starts to emerge as it warms.

Taste: Sour. Not getting any specific fruit, just tons of sour. Develops into a bit of metallic bite. Aftertaste is pretty strongly of metallic cherries, a bit like a Luden's Lozenge. Like the aroma, as it warms, the barrel moves a bit more to the fore, along with more vanilla. I really can't get past the metallic taste though. Kind of a bummer, because this is less one-dimensional than a lot of sours.

Mouthfeel: Nothing really spectacular, the typical moderate-to-heavy carbonation common to the style. A bit on the thin side, but not offensively so.

Overall: So close to being really good, but just too much metal taste. I might try getting another bottle and letting it age to see if that flavor mellows out, but as it stands, there are lots of better sours out there.

Serving type: bottle

03-25-2014 01:52:47 | More by neurobot01
Photo of smcolw
smcolw

Massachusetts

4.14/5  rDev -3%
look: 3.5 | smell: 4 | taste: 4.25 | feel: 4 | overall: 4.25

Literally looks like watered down mud in a glass. Brown, yet no light could possibly pass. Small, quickly dying head. Leaves only a couple of spots for lace.

Strong, sweet red cherry (maraschino?) aroma. If I were blindfolded, I would think this was a Kriek because of the sour nose and slight presence of Belgian yeast.

Tastes like a Kriek, too...almost. But it isn't sweet and there are more "brown" elements like crystal and chocolate malts. Very interesting as it is unusual. Good body with a mildly elevated carbonation.

Certainly not an everyday beer, but a real treat for something delicious and unusual.

Serving type: on-tap

03-22-2014 18:42:19 | More by smcolw
Photo of Lothore
Lothore

California

4.26/5  rDev -0.2%
look: 3.75 | smell: 3.75 | taste: 4.5 | feel: 4.5 | overall: 4.25

A- pours a deep ruddy brown hue with little to no head.

s - cherry, plum, candied fruit

t- starts of with a deep sour cherry flavor that ebbs into a strong wheatiness. Dry.

m- thick and effervescent

d- really great beer. Deep sourness rounded out by wheat.

Serving type: on-tap

03-08-2014 23:03:42 | More by Lothore
Photo of HuskyinPDX
HuskyinPDX

Washington

4.2/5  rDev -1.6%
look: 4.25 | smell: 4 | taste: 4.25 | feel: 4.25 | overall: 4.25

Bottle opened on 12.4.13
2012 Vintage

A - Pours a dark ruby red-brown with a fizzy tan head that lingers a bit.

S - Tart and acidic, cherry in the end.

T - Tart and oaky, very little cherry in the finish.

D - Good carbonation with a medium body.

O - Tart and oaky with not much of the cherry showing.

Serving type: bottle

12-30-2013 03:39:38 | More by HuskyinPDX
Photo of CrazyLarry
CrazyLarry

Oklahoma

3.4/5  rDev -20.4%
look: 4 | smell: 4 | taste: 3 | feel: 3.5 | overall: 3.5

Not my style of beer. I think it is a solid Flanders Red. Appearance: dark murky brown ale; Light head; Heavy on the carbonation. Smell: sour cherries and good bacteria. Taste: sharp light and fast, acidic, carbonation, sour cherries was fulfilled, bacteria, no real finish very clean. Mouth feel: light and acidic.

Serving type: bottle

11-26-2013 18:58:22 | More by CrazyLarry
Photo of PHBoiler
PHBoiler

Illinois

3.84/5  rDev -10.1%
look: 4 | smell: 4 | taste: 3.75 | feel: 4 | overall: 3.75

Reddish brown body with some light white lacing. Smells of tartness on the nose. Not really getting the cherry in the nose or in the body. The acidity drowns out most of the flavors I was hoping for. Given the pricepoint, I'd expect more balance, more cherry flavor. Very acidic for the style in my opinion.

Serving type: bottle

11-04-2013 16:11:47 | More by PHBoiler
Photo of bpasquini
bpasquini

California

4.8/5  rDev +12.4%
look: 4.5 | smell: 5 | taste: 5 | feel: 4.25 | overall: 4.5

A: Pours a very murky dark red/brownish color, leaves a nice thick tannish brown head and slowly goes away leaving thick lacing around the glass

S: Loads of sour/ tart cherry! and there is a very nice floral aroma mixed with it, assuming some of it is the red poppies. Can get hints of sweetness in it, I'm getting a very light caramel, vanilla aroma, presumably from the barrel aging, smells outstanding!

T: Sour/tart cherries! Can get a slight hint of sweet cherry in there as well. There's a very nice funk taste to it as well, I wanna say it is brett but not too sure. Then the slight bread, caramel, vanilla sweet malt comes in on the finish. The sourness level is perfect, it makes your face pucker only a little, and this makes it enjoyable to keep drinking to see if it will continue to make you pucker, fantastic in flavor!

M: Lots of carbonation, medium bodied, slightly oily but leaves a nice dry finish

O: Very well rounded beer, the smell hit me immediately and I knew it was going to be a fantastic beer, if you ever have the opportunity to get this beer, you need to get this beer!

Serving type: bottle

09-25-2013 04:51:23 | More by bpasquini
Photo of MNishCT77
MNishCT77

District of Columbia

4.61/5  rDev +8%
look: 4.5 | smell: 4.5 | taste: 4.75 | feel: 4.5 | overall: 4.5

12.7 oz. bottle picked up in the greater San Diego area, unknown bottling date (2013 vintage), poured into my FFF Teku glass, drank 9/20/13 over an hour.

A: 3/3 - dark brown coloration, minimal clarity (cannot see through), carbonation was a fizzy brown head on first pour but very quickly dissipates into subtle glass lacing , minor alcohol legs

S: 10/12 - lots of pungent sour (especially vinegar) notes admixed with those brown ale roastiness

T: 18/20 - on the anterior tongue, the sour is not overwhelming - tastes a bit like stale bread; in the middle of the mouth, some of the cherry and vinous qualities start to rear their head from the oak aging; the 5.5% ABV is present but certainly not overwhelming in the taste; really a nice balance of malt and sourness!

M: 4/5 - moderate-to-high bodied and appropriately carbonated for an American wild ale

O: 9/10 - another solid offering from The Lost Abbey; I think that they picked it up spot on with the combination of brown ale and sour cherry flavors; I picked up a bottle on a recent trip to San Diego and wish that I had about three more...definitely recommended!

Serving type: bottle

09-22-2013 03:54:52 | More by MNishCT77
Photo of portia99
portia99

Massachusetts

4.26/5  rDev -0.2%
look: 4 | smell: 4.5 | taste: 4.25 | feel: 4 | overall: 4.25

375ml bottle poured into a Lost Abbey stemmed glass.

A - After a physical workout to remove the cork, this pours a slightly muddy dark brown caramelly color. Two fingers of fizzy and foamy head sits on top with a pale khacki color and showing good staying power. Mild lacing left on the glass.

S - Big aroma...filled with tart/sour cherries up front. Quite tart overall, extending beyond the fruit. Good amount of earthy funk too - brett is doing its job quite well here. Smells more alcoholic than the 5% on the label. Mild malt with hints of caramel in the background.

T - Tart but not as much as the aroma would indicate. Lots of sour cherry flavor. Background malt, a bit of caramel. Noticeable funk that adds some earthy character to the malt base. Oaky, woody barrel additions. Mild candy sugar-like sweetness. Despite aroma, no trace of alcohol is detected in the flavor.

M - Body is on the thin side. Carbonation is high, a bit foamy and gives a nice prickly feel too. Tart and funky and filled with cherry. Each sip gives a bit of a puckering effect. Perhaps a bit on the intense side of tartness for the style, but this is a positive attribute for me.

O - Overall a very tasty Flanders red. Tons of cherry, plenty of tart, nice woody notes and earthy funk. Balance of these aspects is very good. Don't buy this often enough. Have to make a note to pick up a few more bottles next time this one comes around.

Serving type: bottle

08-24-2013 23:44:07 | More by portia99
Photo of RaulMondesi
RaulMondesi

California

4.46/5  rDev +4.4%
look: 4.25 | smell: 4.5 | taste: 4.5 | feel: 4.25 | overall: 4.5

On tap at Blue Palms' 5th anniversary in Hollywood, CA.

Raul is trying, Raul is trying to say something, but he can't. Like watching Renoir's "The Rules of the Game", Raul is ineffable - pure beauty! Before, with Flanders Red Ales, Raulsky got that vinegar feel - but not with this bad sucker. Pure goodness. Like Christy Brinkley during the 90's - yes please!

Serving type: on-tap

08-12-2013 22:56:55 | More by RaulMondesi
Photo of beerloverofbham
beerloverofbham

Washington

4.45/5  rDev +4.2%
look: 4.25 | smell: 4.5 | taste: 4.25 | feel: 4.75 | overall: 4.75

Poured into a tulip.
This beer has a foamy, cloudy head that sinks quickly in the liquid. The color is that of slightly-muddled iced tea; some cloudiness, but not much. Funk is the primary aroma here, like well-ripened Roquefort, but a second after it smells slightly like caramel. Excellent carbonation, resonating on the tongue, but dryly. It's not as tart as I expected, considering the style, but it's very sophisticated; some flavors almost go undetected. I get tastes of lemon verbena, Merlot, blood orange, and balsamic reduction. I'm drinking this a little too quickly, but can barely contain myself.

Serving type: bottle

08-08-2013 09:37:48 | More by beerloverofbham
Photo of Teleweizen2
Teleweizen2

New Jersey

3.93/5  rDev -8%
look: 4 | smell: 4.25 | taste: 4 | feel: 3.25 | overall: 3.75

A - pours a murky mix of burgundy and mahogany. A thick wall of tan foam rises. Decent retention but eventually subsides to a fairly thick ring around the rim. Leaves some spotty lacing.

S - a complex yet nuanced nose. Notes of leather jump out first followed by malt vinegar and cherries and possibly oranges. Strong presence of wood along with hints of funky brett.

T - flavors of brow bread and hints of sweet toffee hit the tongue first but are quickly washed away by assertive flavors of tart fruit and malt vinegar. More malty character on the backend which slides into a slightly sour finish.

M - lighter side of medium bodied. Slick slightly watery mouthfeel. Surprisingly medium carbonation.

O - a well balanced and executed wild ale. While i wasnt crazy about the mouthfeel the aroma and flavors are very nice.

Serving type: bottle

08-02-2013 03:22:22 | More by Teleweizen2
Photo of TheSevenDuffs
TheSevenDuffs

Ontario (Canada)

4.4/5  rDev +3%
look: 4.5 | smell: 4.25 | taste: 4.5 | feel: 4.5 | overall: 4.25

A - Opaque murky brown colour with a thin layer of light, bubbly dirty white head.

S - Acidic, funky, sour cherries.

T - Acidic and tart. Sour cherries, barnyard funk, sour cherries. Some oaky/tanic notes.

M - Medium body. Dry and tart. Light to moderate carbonation.

Serving type: bottle

08-01-2013 03:44:42 | More by TheSevenDuffs
Photo of jbdpsu82
jbdpsu82

Pennsylvania

4.56/5  rDev +6.8%
look: 4 | smell: 4.25 | taste: 4.75 | feel: 4.75 | overall: 4.5

Pours a bubbly deep ruby-brown color with a finger width head. A fruity cherry aroma with a good amount of funk. taste is a beautiful biting tart flavor with a trace of the barrel aging mixed in. A carbonated mouthfeel and this beer rises above many others. Love it.

Serving type: bottle

08-01-2013 02:26:00 | More by jbdpsu82
Photo of Kjanisch7
Kjanisch7

New Jersey

4.34/5  rDev +1.6%
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.

Serving type: bottle

07-15-2013 17:16:27 | More by Kjanisch7
Photo of SteveTheDog
SteveTheDog

California

2.7/5  rDev -36.8%
look: 3 | smell: 3.5 | taste: 2.5 | feel: 2.25 | overall: 2.5

I tried this out of a champagne flute, as per the recs on this site.

It was an effervescent amber color with an aroma that of course reminded me of cherries but also of something like a cherry lime rickey with some sweet tones but also a little bit of a smokey oaky scent. It's rare that I say this about a beer but the mouthfeel really came on strong before the taste with the carbonation. It almost felt like my tongue was being cleaned off between sips. After the cleansing of my palate, the tart cherries took over and left my mouth with a feeling of cherry liqueur feel.

Overall, I didn't totally enjoy the sensation, though I can see how some would.

Serving type: bottle

07-05-2013 03:20:06 | More by SteveTheDog
Photo of CarolinaKev
CarolinaKev

South Carolina

4.48/5  rDev +4.9%
look: 4 | smell: 4.5 | taste: 4.5 | feel: 4.5 | overall: 4.5

Received from a good beer friend. Poured from a smaller 12.7 oz bottle to a tulip glass. Poured a deep brown-red hue with a 1/4 inch small head. Nose of sour cherries with some hints of fig and oak with sour funkiness. Taste was verytart and sour up front with a surprising nice hop bite. Good lingering sweetness and hoppiness. Good mouthfeel, easy drinking and refreshing despite its complex flavors. Overall, this was an awesome beer that I would love to have more of. Definitely a beer to seek our if you enjoy flanders reds.

Serving type: bottle

07-03-2013 22:13:46 | More by CarolinaKev
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Red Poppy Ale from The Lost Abbey
95 out of 100 based on 1,422 ratings.