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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:
1,908
Avg:
4.24
pDev:
17.22%
 
 
Wants:
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: 1,908
Photo of GuinnessAtRogerWilco
4.47/5  rDev +5.4%
look: 4 | smell: 4.5 | taste: 4.5 | feel: 4.5 | overall: 4.5

375ml corked bottle poured into a small Chimay chalice.

AP: Rusty brown colour with a 1/2" cream/tan head that dissipates to 1/4" with bubbles still escalating to the top. Nice lacing on the glass when tilted.
AR: Has that classic Flanders Red Ale aroma that I associate with German sourdough pretzels (the hard kind). Apple cider and other fruits like white grape and tart cherries are discerned as well with Belgian yeast funk.
T: Very very nice. A lot of what I got in the nose with grape and cherry skins prominent on the finish and tart apple flavour weaving in and out from start to finish. The sour note is just about right, not too strong but vivid enough for instant recognition and enjoyment. It starts strong at the beginning then softly fades but lingers throughout. Well done.
M: Assertive carbonation, acidic, dry and tart on the finish but does coat your tongue and teeth nicely with what bit of sweetness there is.
OV: A very well done Flanders style Red Ale that would match any from the region itself and I've had my share of them being a fan of sours. The flavours on this are very tasty and the sour note is just right with acidic tartness and not too much of a vinegar aspect. A definite sessionable sipper that offers good flavours and cleanses your palate at the same time.

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Photo of CrazyLarry
3.45/5  rDev -18.6%
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.

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Photo of sherm1016
4.25/5  rDev +0.2%
look: 4 | smell: 4 | taste: 4.5 | feel: 4.5 | overall: 4

2011 Vintage, received in trade with mikedashg. Thanks! Pours a ruby brown color with a big white head that recedes. Carbonation continues to bubble up from the bottom of the glass. Aroma is sour, fruity, cherry, funk, and wine. The body is a little thin on the palate with medium to heavy carbonation. No Flat Abbey here. Flavor is sour, cherry, a little alcohol. The finish is very tart. Not as easy drinking as some others I've had, but an excellent sour ale nonetheless.

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Photo of Jammies
3.3/5  rDev -22.2%
look: 3.5 | smell: 3.5 | taste: 3.5 | feel: 2.5 | overall: 3

A-pours a deep brown with about an inch of foam. great retention

S-sweet with cherries

T-bitter and sweet. (yes, slightly bittersweet) a bit overbearing with the cherries, but overall not too shabby

M-thin and a little tingly on the palate

O-a bit too sour for my liking

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Photo of jwolfie70
4.2/5  rDev -0.9%
look: 4 | smell: 4 | taste: 4.5 | feel: 4 | overall: 4

Had last night during Valentine's dinner with the wife. Poured from the bottle into an oversized wine glass. It pours a deep ruby red, with a thin white head that didn't last long. The smell is of citrus tartness, yeasty funk, and spicy malt. The taste is pretty tart up front, with the funky yeast flavor and malt sweetness coming through toward the end. The beer had a certain spice to it that was nice. Overall a little to tart to drink too much of, and it is a little more refined (i.e. less funky) then some similar beers I have had of the style, still a fantastic beer.

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Photo of Cakanator
4.8/5  rDev +13.2%
look: 4.5 | smell: 4.5 | taste: 5 | feel: 4.5 | overall: 5

Amazing at turkey day dinner. Pours a murky brown red with minimal head. Lacing is ecxellent smells like fresh cherries. So ripe and delicious the sour level is huge and bLanced. One of my all time favorites from la. The levels of sourness is amazing I think lost abbey hAs a winner with this one.

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Photo of JoeySchlitz
4.09/5  rDev -3.5%
look: 3.5 | smell: 4.5 | taste: 4 | feel: 3 | overall: 4.5

'09 from abfraser

A: Looks like murky brown juice when first poured with zero signs of life (i.e.. carbonation). As it sits, a light ring of carbonation forms on the edge along with a faint bit of lacing.

S: Rich sour cherries, with some vinegar lactic notes. Reminds me a little of Duchesse de Bourgogne, with a bit more toned down fruit up front. Also some red wine.

T: More sour cherries, fairly crisp and malt vinegar. The sourness bites at the back of your throat and leaves a puckering aftertaste.

M: Very light carbonation but there is just a bit to give the beer some levity. Could use a tad bit more and would be very good.

O: This is a tasty beer - kind of a mix between Supplication and Duchesse de Bourgogne. Not sure how much more pronounced the cherries would have been fresh but they are still evident. Another solid sour from the crew at L.A.

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Photo of kellyej
5/5  rDev +17.9%

This is my all-time favorite beer. I had it at the Publick House in Boston earlier this year. I would highly recommend Red Poppy to anyone who likes a good Flanders Red.
A: The color was dark brown with red highlights. The head was nice and foamy.
S: Strong smell of cherries with notes of plum and apricot. There was also something spicy or peppery in the nose as well as a bit of bubblegum.
M: Well carbonated, with a medium-light body. Nice dry finish.
T: Sour note well balanced with sweet, smoky flavor. I got lots of cherry and a little bit of bourbon and pepper.

Would love to trade for this beer!

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Photo of Mages64
4.48/5  rDev +5.7%
look: 4.5 | smell: 4 | taste: 5 | feel: 4.5 | overall: 4

Thanks to craytonic for this bottle poured into a tulip.

A: Dark red and brown with only a little head. No sure if pics are allowed but here it is seconds after pouring: http://twitpic.com/379up8

S: dates, prunes, grapes, cherries, cranberries, raspberries(one of those) and oak. Also sweet tarts. I feel like you can tell it is about to be a little sour.

T: Dr. Pepper with sourness and Oak and vanilla in the background. Sour but not too much. Finish is sweeter and woodier. cherries.

M: Delightfully carbonated(must have been fresh;) and sticky. Hits the back of your throat hard but leaves quickly and the only remains are on your tongue and lips.

D: It's an amazing beer but I'm not the right person to ask if I would drink it all night. Special occassion beer perhaps? MUST go well w/ chocolate!

Beer it Forward.

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Photo of BitterPachyderm
3.72/5  rDev -12.3%
look: 3.5 | smell: 4 | taste: 3.5 | feel: 3.5 | overall: 4

I got this via tayner (not to step on toes, but probably my favorite BA). It was the 2009 vintage in the 12.7 oz. bottle.

Going into this tasting, I didn't know that it was a Flanders Oud Bruin, and after drinking it, I still might argue that fact.

Poured into an oversized wine glass at a temperature slightly above 45 degrees. It poured with not much head, mainly just large bubbles slowly disipating. The lack of head puzzled me, because there were a large amount of bubbles racing towards the top of the glass. the body was a reddish orange, almost brown. Lots of floaters in this glass.

The smell was super tart. Lots of cherries presented themselves at first, but let in some leather, green apples, and vanilla in as it warmed. There wasn't a prominent vinegar smell that one would associate with the style here. Some floral and spicy notes came into the picture as well.

A mouthpuckering sourness once it hits your lips. Cherries and apples up front, with a slight dose of balsamic vinegar near the finish. The oak only began to shoe itself as it warmed. Missing the complexities that I like in these kind of brews.

Despite what seemed like a lack of carbonation, the mouthfeel was actually pretty good. I think the sourness was able hold up what little carbonation was in the glass.

Once this brew warmed up a bit, it became super drinkable. Probably one of the smoothest of the sour styles I have had to date.

I think this brew could probably age extremely well. It needs some time to let the funkiness set in and give it more of a complex taste. It's only downfall in my mind was the taste, but like I said, time might cure that.

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Photo of mrkrispy
4.3/5  rDev +1.4%
look: 4 | smell: 4 | taste: 4.5 | feel: 4 | overall: 4.5

Got this at the Release, had a few in line (thanks Port for the great service!) and got a few bottles. I traded away too many and wished I kept a few for myself haha.

Poured a pale hazy and cloudy brown with hint of red. No head at all. Looks like a nice amount of goop in the bottom.

Very pungent but pleasant aroma of cherries, a vinegar and sour bite.

Complex taste, an odd complex of sweet and sour. The sweetness is not sugary or syrupy, more refined. Definitely sour, almost astringent but not puckering. Nice cherry flavor that is in the back, not overwhelming or artificial tasting.

This is one heckuva beer, I think it can be great after another 6 months to a year. I hope Tomme and the Port make this an annual release.

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Photo of Bajasith
3.73/5  rDev -12%
look: 4.5 | smell: 4 | taste: 3.5 | feel: 4 | overall: 3.5

Picked up some of this brew at the Port Brewery Feb 13,2010 so we know it's as fresh as can be.

Popped it open Feb 17, 2010 and by the sound of the cork, not much cabonation in this brew. Poured into a snifter.

A: Poured murky brown with very small head, almost like root beer.
S: Wow, I can definitly get the whiff of the sourness that comes from those cherries and slight oak/earthy smell. Very interesting.
T: Actually quite acidic with sour cherry notes from start to finish. Get a slight viniger tinge at the end.
M: All I need to say is tart to almost lemmony with a small ammount of cabonation for full flavor to explode in your mouth.
D: Good beer but did not knock my socks off. The sour tart flavor is definitly not to my palate. If you are into trying somwthing very new, Red Poppy ale is the one.

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Photo of SQNfan
3.74/5  rDev -11.8%
look: 3.5 | smell: 4.5 | taste: 3.5 | feel: 3.5 | overall: 3.5

The poured murky burnt red to brown in color with a very thin head that dissipated pretty quickly. The nose showed some funk along with red fruit and spice (cinnamon, pepper). In the mouth it was tart and dirty showing more funk than the nose would suggest along with less fruit. There was a distinct bitterness that began in the midpalate and lingers on. The acidity in the midpalate was very well integrated and overall the midpalate was well balanced but gave way to the bitterness in the finish.

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Photo of J-Rye
4.81/5  rDev +13.4%
look: 4 | smell: 4.75 | taste: 5 | feel: 4.75 | overall: 4.75

Look: Bigger bubbles than expected, not too much lacing, a very hazy but very nice mahongany.

Smell: Beauftiful malty, salty sour scent, funky oak. Can't wait to taste.

Taste: Pow! Rush of tart. Overlayed by nice malt. Fruit peaks through. Then there's something interesting I've never quite tasted before. Another review wrote balsamic vinegar, but it's less sweet, more subtle umami in the background. Shadowy, mysterious. Holy smokes this is a fantastic beer.

Feel: Sharply carbonated. Dry finish, nice linger.

Overall: Whoa, better than anticipated, even for Lost Abbey!

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Photo of kleffman
4.35/5  rDev +2.6%
look: 4 | smell: 4 | taste: 5 | feel: 3.5 | overall: 4

Finally got a whole glass of this during the O'Briens Lost Abbey night during their anniversary month. This was described as a special double cherry blend of red poppy, special for the night. Poured into a Chimay glass with zero head and a cloudy reddish color.

Smells of sour cherry, lactic acid and oak/woody aromas.

Tastes like a sweet and sour cherry with hints of vinegar, no real alcohol presence and some sugary flavors to balance it. Tart, sour cherry and some vanilla to round it out.

Decent mouthfeel for a flanders style sour beer, but nothing incredible and the drinkability is extremely high. I think this would be a good gateway sour beer, and the only reason I didn't get a refill was to spread it around a little more. There wasn't a ton available. Overall very excellent beer, and will always seek out.

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Photo of mj001jk
4.38/5  rDev +3.3%
look: 4.5 | smell: 4 | taste: 4.5 | feel: 4.5 | overall: 4.5

A pleasant nose with tart, black cherries and dried figs, with mineral and vanilla oak overtones.

Flavors are rich and coat the palate with tart, yet ripe cherries and green apples providing lots of acidity. After the initial mouth-puckering, it gives way to a long and seductive sweetness, fruits and finishes with dry tannins.

It is hearty yet refreshing, delicious from beginning to end.

I already yearn for next time...

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Photo of RyBrew54
4.04/5  rDev -4.7%
look: 4 | smell: 3.75 | taste: 4.25 | feel: 4 | overall: 4

Pours a cloudy red amber with puffy beige head. Nose is slightly sweet and funky, yet very light overal. Notes of light cider vinegar, cherry, and candy. Taste is tart cherry up front, not overly sour, with sweeter malt backing. Body is is lighter and brew is loaded with sediment. Overall a very solid and a well rounded wild ale.

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Photo of antilogic
4.47/5  rDev +5.4%
look: 4 | smell: 4.5 | taste: 4.5 | feel: 4.5 | overall: 4.5

Taster @ LA Barrel Tasting Night II. Tomme said the version we had was not as sour as the 2009 release will be. Too bad, I thought it was fantastic as is.

Hazy red/brown color with a minimal white head. Smell was of cherry, oak, fruits and a slight sour funk. Slightly sour, but well balanced and very drinkable. I quite enjoyed it and will do my best to get my share next release..

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Photo of EveningCordial
4.33/5  rDev +2.1%
look: 4.5 | smell: 4.5 | taste: 4.25 | feel: 4.25 | overall: 4.25

Poured into snifter from bottle.

A- Iced tea color, off-white head. Little lacing and tons of effervescence. Lots of yeast swimming in the bubbles.

S- Sour and tart nose. Cherries and fruit up front with undertones of noir grapes, wine, and raisons. Very dank and old smelling. Hint of oak.

T- Lots of depth here. Sourness up front gives way to a complex taste of earthy florals, slight cherries, tart fruits, wine, vinegar, and alcohol present. Little to no aftertaste.

M- Light to medium bodied, lots of carbonation helps move the tartness around in the mouth.

O- Pleasure to drink and quite enjoyable. If you like a sour ale, this is it. Im not a huge fan of cherries so I was happy when the smell of them was there, but not so much in the taste. Taste brought me back in time for some reason, very old tasting and earthy with a smooth finish once you get past the initial tart. Also tastes a little wine-like. My biggest complaint was the price of this bottle. I dont think I'll shell out the money again so unfortunately this might be my one and only red poppy. Glad I tried it though.

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Photo of EGledhill
2.86/5  rDev -32.5%
look: 4 | smell: 3 | taste: 3 | feel: 3 | overall: 2

Bottle obtained in a trade with numbeercruncher. Damn fine trader.

Poured into chalice glass

A. Cloudy brownish body, no head. Looks semi appealing.

S. Smells like sour cherries and feet. I'm not really feeling this is my type of shit.

T. Yep... Definitely not my shit. Taste like old sour cherries, I dunno, plastic maybe, vinegar, oak. It's on point for the style but damned if I like it

M. thin

D. Fuck that. It pretty much taste like eating a cherry dipped in vinegar.

So this will probably be my last attempt at any "sour" beer. I'm sure some people get down with this style but not this guy. I think I'll stick to stouts and IPA's from now on.

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Photo of ALSAIL
4.24/5  rDev 0%
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.

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Photo of thickerfreakness
4.57/5  rDev +7.8%
look: 4 | smell: 4.5 | taste: 4.5 | feel: 4.5 | overall: 5

This pours a nice, ruby red with a cherry tinted beige head that lasts for a while and fades to a film.

Smells first of sour cherries, then vanilla and oak, followed by some musty character. More musty smelling as it warms.

Well it smelled a lot more sour than it tastes and there was more mustiness in the taste as well. Not disappointing just different. A very enjoyable sweet and sour cherry taste up front that melds in with the vanillin and woodiness. Then a long lingering mustiness/bitterness stays on my tongue that is actually quite pleasant. A little more sweet vanilla and mustiness as it warms.

Nice and dry. Easy as hell to drink. I just want to keep taking sips but as its my only bottle I have to conserve it.

This is a really great Oud Bruin. I have only had one better and that was Aardmonnik but I will never get to try that one again haha. This one was just a really enjoyable beer.

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Photo of steadydose
4.38/5  rDev +3.3%
look: 4.5 | smell: 4 | taste: 4.5 | feel: 3.5 | overall: 5

375 ml cork finished bottle opened with a pop. A little carbonation mist came out of the opening. Poured into a tulip glass.

A vigorous poor created a quarter inch thick head. A few bubbles clinging to the sides of the glass. Color is a cola brown-red, and light sediment is in the body of the beer. Looks nice in a tulip glass.

The smell was apparent from the get go, first sniff and tart sour cherry is the dominant smell. Fruity Esters are there in the background and as the beer opens up the sweet malt becomes detectable.

First taste and Red Poppy initially made my mouth pucker, and salivate. Tart cherries are dominant upfront w/ hints of vanilla bean at the finish. Overall tart and fruity, but in a good way.

The beer has a light body, and is undercarbonated, body seems to thin out even more with time.

I enjoyed this beer's complexity and suppleness. For me the combination of sour/tart/cherry and barrel aged flavor makes this a memorable beer.

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Photo of nectar14
4.12/5  rDev -2.8%
look: 4 | smell: 4.5 | taste: 4 | feel: 4 | overall: 4

A: Cloudy brown color. Off white head that stirs up with swirling, fades with sittin' still.

S: Nice nutty oak backing up sour bretty funk; very enticing.

T: Decent depth to the cherry, brett, and oaky flavors. Finishes a bit short in flavor, but the acidity lingers.

M: Medium to full in body. Pleasantly carbonated. Like the texture.

D: Sip after sip, this is one that goes down pretty easy and makes you want another.

Glad I got a chance to try this. Not many made in USA like it.

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Photo of Bsquirrelbrewer
4.52/5  rDev +6.6%
look: 5 | smell: 4.25 | taste: 4.5 | feel: 5 | overall: 4.5

On draft at monks cafe.

Dark reddish brown color with a thin cream head that quickly dissipates to a ring.

Smell is bright and earthy with notes of cherries.

Taste is a balanced tart sweetness. Not at all cloying. Cherries are present and fresh, not overpowering. Taste fades to mild acidity, not a lengthy aftertaste.

Mouthfeel is clean and refreshing.

Overall one of my favorites from Lost Abbey!

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