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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
95
world-class

1,614 Ratings
THE BROS
95
world-class

(view ratings)
Ratings: 1,614
Reviews: 530
rAvg: 4.28
pDev: 9.58%
Wants: 521
Gots: 486 | FT: 34
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: 1,614 | Reviews: 530 | Display Reviews Only:
Photo of tom10101
4/5  rDev -6.5%

tom10101, Mar 20, 2013
Photo of Kelton
4/5  rDev -6.5%

Kelton, Nov 14, 2011
Photo of boatshoes
4.03/5  rDev -5.8%

Received this in a monster box from 6daysbottomocean in the Whale BIF 3. 375ml bottle. Thanks again!

Appearance- Pours a dark, very slightly crimson tinged, hazy brown into my snifter. A moderately aggressive pour yields about a finger of slightly tan head on top which to my surprise sticks around for quite awhile. Eventually dies back to a sheet across the top. Lots of beading carbonation in the body of the beer and a very small amount of lacing.

Smell- Very vinous with lots of oak present. Smells of dark tart cherries, some red wine grapes, and barrel. A little bit of vanilla even perhaps, not sure exactly where I'm getting that from, but maybe off of the barrel. Finishes with a strong whiff of lactic tartness.

Taste- Once again, very tart and very vinous. Lots of tart fruit flavors. Barrels really show through as well, adding a rich woodiness to the palate as well. Finishes on a very strong acidic note.

Mouthfeel/Drinkability- Mouthfeel was good for the style with enough, but not too much, carbonation. Drinkability was pretty good for me as well given the good flavor profile and nice tartness. However, I'm a sour head, and if you aren't this may be a touch tart for you.

Overall, a very solid shot at an oud bruin from Lost Abbey. I'm generally very impressed by the sours I've had of theirs and this one didn't disappoint.

boatshoes, May 31, 2010
Photo of 4DAloveofSTOUT
4.03/5  rDev -5.8%

For my 100th beer advocate review I thought I would drink something that was different from the normal styles I love. This is my first Red Flanders Style Ale.

Cage & cork 12oz bottle poured into tulip glass.

Appearance: It a body is a dark brown and deep red color tone. The head is a real gusher that has seems t remain at a bit smaller that I fingers head that is khaki in color. Lacing is sticking all over the side of the glass.

Smell: Intense cherries. Some funkiness and vinegar like smell.

Taste: Intense sour cherries and funk. I dont really taste the oak barrel at all in this beer. As the cherries fade, the funk takes over in the aftertaste. Its not off putting at all it actually quite interesting.

Mouthfeel: Light and refreshing body that is smooth. Carbonation is very lively and would consider it a touch more than moderately carbonated.

Overall: This was a very interesting and enjoyable beer. It makes me want to try more sour beers! The biggest down fall is the price! At over 15 dollars for 12oz bottle this beer will be reserved for special occassions only!

4DAloveofSTOUT, May 25, 2011
Photo of femALEist
4.03/5  rDev -5.8%

Had this on tap at Toronado during SF Beer week.
Red Poppy Ale by Lost Abbey is a Flanders Oud Bruin style beer and 5.5%. It is a brown ale brewed with sour cherries and aged in oak barrels for over 6 months. It poured a beautiful copper red with a pinky full of a white head. It smelled of citrus, sour cherries and a hint of barnyard funkiness- kind of a one note nose. It tasted like dried sour cherries, Brett, and vinegar. The sour cherriness was pretty well balanced.

femALEist, Mar 25, 2010
Photo of ChugginOil
4.03/5  rDev -5.8%

Poured on tap @ Hop Juice Fest 2011

Pours a dark reddish brown color with less than a finger of cream colored head. The nose is sweet and sour. Vinager and cherries come to mind. The taste is much the same but nicely amped. Lip smacking tartness upfront with some sweet cherry offerings. Delightful. The mouthfeel is medium bodied and prickly from the tartness. Super drinkable and damn tasty as well

ChugginOil, Jun 19, 2011
Photo of ShadesOfGray
4.03/5  rDev -5.8%

Poured from a 375ml bottle into my Troegs Mad Elf snifter/tulip glass. Pours a crisp reddish color, filling the glass a dark maroon...with a small creamy tan head. The head dissaptes pretty quickly and remains a very thin rim with little to no lacing. Appearance is thick and hazy looking.

Aroma is strong of vinegar and tartness. Even though this doesn't sound appealing to everyone...if this style of beer is right up your alley...it's completely inviting. A very sharp and fruity aroma is hidden in the back as well.

Flavor is tart, crisp, carbonated, fruity, tons of vinegar sharpness...and booze is a non-factor. Light and crisp mouthfeel...not complex. Not the best Flanders out there, sweetness is lacking...but completely delish at the same time! Oveall, a great beer from Lost Abbey!

ShadesOfGray, Apr 29, 2010
Photo of 51mmz0rz
4.03/5  rDev -5.8%

Poured from a 12.7oz bottle into a St. Bernardus chalice.

A: Dark opaque brown, head is off white, fades quickly.

S: Sourness, some sweet fruit smells as well. A very slight muskiness.

T: Powerfully sour up front and on the finish. Lacks some complexity, but has solid flavor.

M: Highly carbonated, maybe just a tad too much, otherwise, pleasant.

D: Highly drinkable and refreshing.

Overall a very nice, solid beer, but not for the price.

51mmz0rz, May 02, 2011
Photo of readbaron
4.03/5  rDev -5.8%

2010 vintage - poured into portsmouth tulip.

Pours out a somewhat murky reddish brown with a small ring of white bubbles - no foam or lacing.

Smell is good - sour, acetic, cherries, some oak, occasional hints of solvent, and quite a bit of funk when you swirl the glass.

Taste is more straitforward than the nose - no funk to speak of - just sour with cherries. A couple sips here and there had something odd going on - ashes/solvent finish - but that was the exception, not the rule.

Mouthfeel is decent. A little flat and heavy. Not as crisp and refreshing as some sours can be.

Overall, a tasty beer. I'm glad I have another, but I don't know that it's worth the $16 price tag. Probably won't seek this one out in the future.

readbaron, Jul 25, 2011
Photo of RuckusDu
4.03/5  rDev -5.8%

2012 Vintage, 12.7oz bottle into Bruery tulip.

A - A vigorous pour revealed a finger of large bubble cola colored head which quickly fell. Body is clear but a deep amber in color with tons of red, almost to a purple color. No lacing.

S - Super tart on lemon, grapefruit, and raspberry. There is a nice sweetness that comes through. Cherries and raspberries. Very nice.

T - Tons more funk on the tongue. Grapefruit rind. Cherries of course along with some lemon. Super sour with almost no sweetness to it.

M - A thick body and moderate carbonation. Ok.

O - Pretty good beer. Would like to see a bit more sweetness to it to compliment the tart and funk.

RuckusDu, Jul 22, 2012
Photo of flayedandskinned
4.04/5  rDev -5.6%

2014 Vintage
Poured into a standard tulip

Appearance: (4)
Pours a dark, murky mahogany with deep red undertones. A loosely bubbled, 1 finger tall tan head quickly rises and recedes almost immediately, leaving no lacing behind it's wake.

Aroma: (3.75)
Aromas of slightly tart cherries immediately shoot out of the glass upon pouring; Buried beneath the fruity acidity is a lightly acetic red wine vinegar character, but it is kept in balance by a rich, almost toffee like malt bread-y-ness. There is a very light barnyard funkiness imparted by some Brettanomyces. As the beer warms, some vanilla tones from the barrels become more apparent.

Taste: (4.25)
As soon as the beer touches your tongue, you're blasted by clean, juicy lactic acidity; tart cherry pie filling as well as both lemon and cherry juice. As the tartness fades on your palate, you are greeted by the flavors of the actual dark cherry flesh intermingling with notes of vanilla and almonds from the barrel. The beer finishes very dry with a flourish of slightly sweet, caramel-y malt. Long lingering notes of juicy cherry flesh, tart cherry flesh, bready malt and a deep vanilla character from the wood. light brettanomyces funk and tannins.

Mouthfeel: (3.75)
light bodied with high, peppery carbonation. Refreshing, but I feel that the very high carbonation overwhelms the some of the more subtle aspects of this beer.

Overall: (4)
With Red Poppy, Lost Abbey ages their sour brown with cherries in used wine barrels. What comes out is a great sour that really showcases the essence of the whole cherry; the skin, flesh, juice and even the pit. I really appreciated the strong vanilla character imparted by the oak barrels that is often missing in a lot of sour beer. Recommended.

flayedandskinned, May 21, 2014
Photo of Smurf2055
4.04/5  rDev -5.6%

Poured into tulip, finger of off white head. Sediment is at the bottom.

Smell is tart and balanced.

Taste is strong cherry. Sour, almost bitter. Candied, almost.

Very smooth and balanced. Sits on the tongue quite well.

Very well done, but I don’t think it’s worth the price tag.

Smurf2055, Jun 10, 2013
Photo of AKBelgianBeast
4.05/5  rDev -5.4%

Big thanks to SuzyGreenberg for this bottle.

Pours a very murky reddish brown color. Slightly undercarbonated despite a vigorous pour, but the small head that is there for a couple moments is stark white, but soon reduces to a ring around the glass.

Nose is chock full of flemish goodness. Lots of vinegary sourness and some slight cherry flavor.

Taste follows. A well made flemish for sure. Taste starts off with a nice little sweetness, but quickly profresses into that classic vinegary tartness of flemish brews. A decent amount of funk, and some cherry sweetness does peek its head out. Finish is the ideal amount of tartness for the style. Aftertaste is lingering tartness and slight cherry kick.

Mouthfeel is just about right where it should be. Aside from slight but definitely noticeable undercarbonation, not much to dock here.

Drinkability is quite solid for the style. abv is right where it should be and feels just fine. The carbonation does make it a tiny bit akward though.

Overall this is definitely one of the best examples of the style that is brewed inside US borders. Not alot of solid oud bruins being made on our soil, but this is one of them. If the carbonation could be modified slightly this beer would be that much better. This is no cuvee de tomme, but it is a great example of the style and a well crafted beer.

AKBelgianBeast, Jun 09, 2009
Photo of nickd717
4.05/5  rDev -5.4%

Sampled at GABF 2009...don't kill me, I'm not done yet...and then had it straight from the barrel at Lost Abbey Barrel Tasting 2009.

Here is the my review from GABF that I wrote down earlier but did not post because of the "don't review from beer fests" guideline:
Another great sour from the Flat - I mean Lost - Abbey. Just kidding Tomme, for all the heat you take, you shut us up with some great beers. This is one of them. Bottle pours hazy dark reddish-amber with a small, lasting off-white head. Aroma is tart berries with cherries standing out, oak, red wine vinegar, sweet malt, and funk. Flavor is tart, but not too much so, with some sweetness to balance lending caramel and toffee notes. Loads of cherries, raspberries, and red wine. Also some oaky barrel notes and vinegar/lemon tartness on the finish. Palate is medium-bodied and sharp with higher than average carbonation. This is a great beer overall.

So I was all set to give this a high review once I got a fair pour of it. Then I got a fair pour of it at this at the Barrel Tasting, and to be honest, dogg, I wasn't too impressed. Had sort of an odd funkiness to it that I didn't pick up the first time that threw it off a little bit. I love a good sour, but the balance has to be just right, and for some reason this time was a little off.

So I'm going to more or less average the ratings from the two times I've had this, maybe a little heavier on the good experience since that wasn't straight from the barrel and was more how this is meant to be served. Figure that's a fair assessment. Would like to try it out of the bottle sometime.

First time was an A, second was a B. Overall I'll give it a low A-.

nickd717, Nov 13, 2009
Photo of Alieniloquium
4.05/5  rDev -5.4%

375 mL bottle poured into a goblet. Huge pain in the ass to get this cork out. I ended up decapitating it on accident and resorted to a corkscrew.

Appearance - Murky reddish brown body with a nice, cream colored head. Retention is spectacular as it sustains a nice pillow atop the body. Surprisingly, I have yet to have an uncarbonated Lost Abbey beer.

Smell - Cherries. Lots of cherries. I get a substantial funk behind all of it, though, which is quite welcome in my book. Not so sour smelling, really, which is also a good sign. I find that if I can smell the sour, it's usually a bad sour.

Taste - VERY tart. Overpoweringly, really. It's intense enough to overshadow any other flavors that are there. I get lots of sour cherries with some oaky barrel flavors in the middle. The finish gets a little acetic with the tartness, but it's blended with a bit of funk. The sourness lingers for quite a while.

Mouthfeel - It's not THAT tart, but the tartness just lasts and lasts. So much so that I find it hard to taste other things. It's light, dry, well-carbonated, but astringent in its acidity.

Overall - Not a balanced Flanders Red, but definitely a tasty one. I'd like to get a bit more complexity out of it, but it's just cherries all the way.

Alieniloquium, Oct 20, 2011
Photo of kk73
4.05/5  rDev -5.4%

Poured from a 375ml bottle into my glass. Thanks heyta for this bottle. 2011 vintage.

A - Pours a dark and hazy reddish brown with a big three finger oatmeal color head. The head quickly dissipates into a layer of foam. Little to no lacing.

S - Smells of tart fruit, mainly cherries. Apple cider vinegar, clove, and wood.

T - Tart sour cherries upfront, followed by some wood. Probably the oak its aged in. Also tart apples and vinegar in the finish. Tart and lip puckering throughout.

M - Medium bodied, with plenty of bubbly carbonation.

D - Pretty good. Not much experience in this style but very similar imo to The Dissident. Easy drinking if you can get pass the sour, vinegar like taste. No problem finishing this bottle by myself. Would seek or buy again. Would like to see how this is with some age on it.

kk73, Apr 08, 2011
Photo of riored4v
4.05/5  rDev -5.4%

Reviewed on 3/30/11

Poured in to a tulip. 1.5 finger, fluffy, off-white head. Dark red body that showed some murkiness. Head held really well.

Smell was of tart cherry and acidity with a touch of vinegar. Slightly funky with some Brett. Notes of oak and light maltiness.

Taste was good. Nice tart cherry flavor. Mildly acidic. Notes of oak and dark fruit. Again, slightly funky with some farmhouse characteristics.

Mouthfeel was very good. Light body, medium/high carbonation. Nice and dry.

Good drinkability on this one. Nicely tart while maintaining drinkability.

riored4v, Jun 08, 2011
Photo of Maxwell
4.05/5  rDev -5.4%

The beer pours a deep candied brown like root beer. The head is large, tan and rocky, but it mellows down to a half fingers width with time, while lacing is droopy and thin. The beers body is clear of sediment with light carbonation bubbles traveling up the sides of the glass. The beer smells much mustier than I expected for the style. Sour hints of cherry and fruit leather are present along with a caramel malt background. Musty funk is definitely present though, and suggests a hint of church basements, and perhaps that of a lost abbey…

The beer tastes largely sour with definite notes of sour cherries, though they are weaker than I would hope for. Caramel malts are present in the background as a faint hint, but the sour cherry funk is the dominant thing. Yeast notes give a slight sour apple and slight barnyard and hay notes, as well as slight buttery notes in the middle of the taste, and the beer is nice to sip slowly. The mouthfeel has strong under-pricklings, but overall the beer is smooth and creamy. The tongue is left slick with saliva and a slight after taste of cherries and sour apples, the middle of the tongue is also dry but sticky. The real star of the mouthfeel, however, is how the beer mellows its own effervescence out into a smooth velvety embrace on your tongue. Overall this is another tasty Flanders red. I didn’t like this as much as Oude Tart, but I think I liked it more than Rodenbach’s Grand Cru. It’s worth a try for sour lovers, and I am very happy to sample a full bottle from The Lost Abbey, though their pricing on the East Coast is a far too much for my budget. Worth a try, but not worth continued sampling.

Maxwell, Oct 06, 2012
Photo of GrandCruDrew
4.05/5  rDev -5.4%

12.7oz bottle from 2011 poured in my New Belgium Globe. I'm in serious need of a Lost Abbey stem. Pretty naustalgic beer always. I had the very first bottling of this beer that was giving to Ron Jefferies from Tommy. Ron and I shared this as well as a few others.

A- Dark brown in color, a good 1inch head with little retention and lacing.

S- Yum! Farmhouse, brett, Sour cherries, caramel, toffee, bubble gum, a very good fruitiness and some spice. Equivalent in the wine world of a rustic Rhone!

T- Taste resembles the nose, with maybe falling a little short of the nose. Maybe when it warms. The cherries dominate the palate with a good acidity and oak flavor.

M- The palate runs a little short for me. I think it needs to develope in the bottle a bit longer. It has a very short finish with only the cherries lingering.

Overall- Great beer. It just falls a little short in the Sour Brown Cherry notes category. I could smell it all day however!

GrandCruDrew, May 08, 2011
Photo of Sean9689
4.05/5  rDev -5.4%

Pours light brown with a faint touch of red into a champagne flute. A very minute amount of head, almost none. Lots of dark cherry's, raspberry's, fig's, plum's on the nose with a bunch of tart mixed in...sweet yet tart, pretty interesting. Lots of tart and oak on the palate, really great. Mouthfeel is light in body, very little carbonation (I could use a bit more). I really like this one...a winner, in my opinion. Will drink again, 100%. Wish there was more carbonation, which hurt the mouthfeel & drink.

Sean9689, May 08, 2009
Photo of zoolzoo
4.05/5  rDev -5.4%

Thanks awalk1227

A: Big pop from the cork, pours an almost opaque shade of redish brown. This thing has a really frothy and bubbly looking cream head that just wont get lost. Sort of Guinness looking in texture.

S: Lactic presence, vinegar and under ripened cherry tartness. Perhaps some vanilla or brown sugar.

T: Follows the nose quite nicely. Similar to many Oud Bruins except with more assertive tartness. Funk and tart up front, rolling into unripe cherries and brown malt base. Slightly puckering, definitely mouthwatering in the finish.

M: Surprisingly creamy, medium carb.

O: Overall, a great example of the style. Though I must say Im sort of getting lost in Flanders type sours. I cant exactly say what would make this one stand out in the crowd. Given the price and availability of this beer, I cant see seeking it out again in the midst of other "off the shelf" Flanders options available to me. Still, a great beer in its own right.

zoolzoo, May 14, 2011
Photo of yourefragile
4.05/5  rDev -5.4%

2010 375 mL bottle.

Pours a murky dark ruby brown with a thin dense cream head that fades to a thick collar and minimal lace. Aroma of oak, light vinegar, apple sauce, tart cherry; pleasant blend of acid and sweet. Flavor is oaky and mildy cherry and vanilla sweet through the body before a strong acidic sourness builds long into the finish. Medium thick body with light carbonation. A little too harsh and acidic in the finish, but a nice oak and fruit presence otherwise.

yourefragile, May 10, 2012
Photo of pmccallum86
4.05/5  rDev -5.4%

Pours a small head that dissipates rather quickly. The body is dark maroon and slightly transparent.

Smell is weird, lots of vinegar and funky aromas. Not like any other beer I have smelled.

Taste is slightly tart with quite a bit of vinegar and dry finish. Another carbonated beer from Lost Abbey, whaddaknow. Leathery dry finish for a flanders oud bruin. Very good beer to try though, more funky and sour than other beer I have had from the style.

Mouthfeel is highly carbonated with a very dry finish.

Drinkability is pretty good, not something you want to drink quickly, it's a nice sipper. Another quality beer from the Lost Abbey.

pmccallum86, May 13, 2010
Photo of mutterfudder
4.08/5  rDev -4.7%

2009 vintage, opens with a dull pop, poured into an Allagash tulip.

A - pours murky brown with a reddish tint. No real head despite a vigorous pour. What little head there was disappeared within a second. Flat as a wall.

S - strong woody smell with some cherry flavors. mild alcohol-y sweetness, like a hint of vanilla.

T - pretty much the same the smell. Woody, oaky flavor with a tart cherry finish. There is the typical funky, earthy flavors of a sour/wild ale. All the flavors sit in a good balance, and isn't too sharp a lactic flavor.

M / D - Mouthfeel is slick with no carbonation. Would have liked to have some carbonation present here. Despite that, the beer is drinkable for the style thanks to the balanced tartness.

Red Poppy is an interesting enough beer, that could stand to be a little more effervescent.

mutterfudder, Feb 16, 2010
Photo of Thorpe429
4.08/5  rDev -4.7%

Thanks to bmanning for opening this at a recent tasting.

2009 Vintage. 375mL bottle.

A: Poured a slightly-browned red with a bit of a cream-colored head.

S: Aromas of cherry are definitely present atop some funk and vinegary acid.

T: The cherries are not as strong in the taste department as with the smell, and the slightly-puckering acidity takes over. Good balance between the sweet and tart nature of the cherries with the predominate sour qualities of this one.

M: Pretty low carbonation, fairly tart, and somewhat mouth-drying.

D: Quite drinkable. Fairly complex.

Thorpe429, Jan 10, 2010
Red Poppy Ale from The Lost Abbey
95 out of 100 based on 1,614 ratings.