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Carnevale - The Lost Abbey

Not Rated.

Displayed for educational use only; do not reuse.
very good

649 Ratings
no score

(send 'em beer!)
Ratings: 649
Reviews: 304
rAvg: 3.96
pDev: 9.09%
Wants: 43
Gots: 62 | FT: 1
Brewed by:
The Lost Abbey visit their website
California, United States

Style | ABV
Saison / Farmhouse Ale |  6.50% ABV

Availability: Winter

Notes/Commercial Description:
2008 (first release) does not have brettanomyces.

(Beer added by: seaoflament on 02-12-2008)
Beer: Ratings & Reviews
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Ratings: 649 | Reviews: 304 | Display Reviews Only:
Photo of Travisnin
5/5  rDev +26.3%

Travisnin, Nov 14, 2011
Photo of phichifiji00
4.03/5  rDev +1.8%
look: 4.5 | smell: 4 | taste: 4 | feel: 4 | overall: 4

2010 bottle poured into Lost Abbey tulip.

Appearance: Clear, light amber in color. Pours 2+ inches of thick white head that fades fairly slowly. Lots of lacing.

Smell: Spices, brett, barnyard funk, earthy, a bit of citrus, grapefruit.

Taste: Spicy, peppery, earthy, barnyard funk, grapefruit, lemon zest.

Mouthfeel: Light bodied, moderate carbonation, zesty/crisp.

Overall: Very drinkable. A very tasty saison. Good balance between spice and citrus.

phichifiji00, Nov 01, 2011
Photo of Thorpe429
3.93/5  rDev -0.8%
look: 4.5 | smell: 3.5 | taste: 4 | feel: 4 | overall: 4

Big thanks to daysinthewake for getting this bottle out to me. Served in a Lost Abbey long-stem tulip.

Pours a slightly-hazy peach color with a thick and foamy white head. Loads of lacing on the way down and a thick collar throughout. The nose carries some light fruit plus a bit of white pepper and spice. Light coriander character and a bit of citrus peel. Light wheat. Slight dryness to the finish. Medium-high carbonation. Good malt backbone with a nice bit of spice and yeast bite throughout. Quite nice.

Thorpe429, Oct 09, 2011
Photo of nppeders
3.8/5  rDev -4%
look: 4.5 | smell: 4 | taste: 3.5 | feel: 4 | overall: 4

Saison bottled with Brett B. or what was Brett Bruxelles 5 years ago but now is considered their house strain.

appearance - nice orange, beautiful, amazing, exactly as it should be.

smell - a little bit of funk, maybe some coriander, or some other spice.

taste - the taste comes together with some mandarine oranges, a bit of brett, and hits you on the back of the throat with some bitterness. There is definitely a nice malty, bready background going on. Maybe a little too much bitterness on the end. A tad bit of tartness on the end that works really well and makes the mouth water.

mouthfeel - dry, highly carbonated, very nice.

overall - This is a great Saison. The brett is very melow, and the bitterness is a little high. Over all, a finely crafted ale. I'd definitely buy this again!

nppeders, Oct 03, 2011
Photo of scoots511
3.13/5  rDev -21%
look: 3.5 | smell: 3.5 | taste: 3 | feel: 3 | overall: 3

Served in a 750mL corked and caged bottle. Cork was really difficult to remove. I usually think that means there may be a problem with carbonation but this bottle is right on. Pours a white foamy head.

S: Light citrus and possibly a slight farmhouse aroma

T: Pepper, citrus, some earthy flavors and some sweet but light residuals. The flavors stay for awhile after the first drink.

M: Huh, creamy, this is the first time I have described a beer as creamy

O: I'm giving this beer an average rating. I'm picking up a lot of lemony citrus flavors that aren't really to my taste and there is a taste, maybe from a combination of flavors that reminds me of a metallic taste, not sure how else to describe it.

scoots511, Sep 09, 2011
Photo of Bubba83
3.98/5  rDev +0.5%
look: 4.5 | smell: 4 | taste: 4 | feel: 3.5 | overall: 4

Poured from a 750ml into a tulip at 45 degrees. Leaves a big helping of frothy bright white head that retains incredibly and leaves behind some awesome lacing to boot. Just from the way the head is you can tell the beer is going to be super dry. A rather brilliant pilsner like yellow fills the rest of the glass, with lots of carbonation rising upwards from the base of the tulip.

Smells like freshly mown grass, and the hay you'd find in a barnyard. I pick up a little bit of an alcoholic aroma here too, along with quite a decent hop smack of the earthy/flowery variety. Peppery hints and maybe the slightest hints of fruit from the yeast.

The flavor is a bit different than the aroma. Up front there is a decent light bready/crackery bit before turning into some brief mellow apricot flavor, followed up by a big palate of earth, must, and spices. A nice hoppy bite finishes it off, with more peppery tones and flowers with a hint of citrus.

This is dry as hell. Usually I love that in a Saison but I actually think this may be taking it a little overboard. Additionally, it's probably a bit too carbonated. As far as the consistency and feel on the tongue goes, it works well.

Overall this is a very good example of a Saison that has been hopped up with some American flare. A bit simple perhaps, with not as much complexity in the fruity profile as many other Saisons, but very refreshing and tasty in its own regard.

Bubba83, Aug 27, 2011
Photo of ehammond1
4.1/5  rDev +3.5%
look: 3.5 | smell: 4 | taste: 4.5 | feel: 3 | overall: 4

On Tap

Churchill's Pub & Grille
San Marcos, CA

Somewhat hazy golden and yellow with a thin white cap. Limited lacing down the glass.

Sweet and musty aroma consisting of lemon, barnyard/hay, a little musty funk, and some spice notes: coriander? The aroma on this one, as I've found with a few other saisons served cold from the tap, need to warm up to really express their aroma. When cold, there's almost no aroma whatsoever.

A very well-balanced and highly drinkable saison. All the flavors come together magnificently well: sweet and tart lemon, musty barnyard hay, grass, mild yet biting spice and herb notes (black pepper and coriander).

Medium mouthfeel, though a touch metallic and sharp at times.

A delicious and classic version of a great style.

ehammond1, Aug 22, 2011
Photo of jnezda
3.75/5  rDev -5.3%
look: 3.5 | smell: 4 | taste: 3.5 | feel: 4 | overall: 4

Poured into a wine glass with great half inch head. Dark golden color and white head but it faded quickly and there is a slight chill haze to add color. Not overly carbonated and the smell is traditional saison. Good spice notes of coriander and orange with a slight back end herb flavor. Over all good beer but the finish left a bit of an oily mouthfeel. Another pretty good beer from Lost Abbey. Need to make it back to the brewery for some Ten Commandments.

jnezda, Aug 14, 2011
Photo of jondeelee
3.95/5  rDev -0.3%
look: 4 | smell: 4 | taste: 4 | feel: 3.5 | overall: 4

Carnevale Ale bears many of the scents native to its Saison-style roots, including Belgian-like orange and coriander, and hints of Saison spiciness. Accompanying these is a strong hint of apple cider, as well as white grape, pear, and lychee nut aromas.

On the tongue, the brew is fruity and spicy, the former coming in waves of orange, grape, pear, and grapefruit, and the latter in hints of coriander and pepper. A good amount of hops nicely balances out the sugars, but remains far enough in the background to avoid detracting from the brew's focus on fruit and spice. The aftertaste is dominated by orange, coriander, and pepper, and lingers on the tongue for quite a while. Mouthfeel is medium-light, and carbonation is medium.

Overall, this is a well-made beer, having been obviously brewed lovingly and with a good amount of ingredients. I'm not sure it necessarily brings anything new to the table, but it is quite delicious.

jondeelee, Aug 04, 2011
Photo of IronLover
4/5  rDev +1%
look: 4 | smell: 4 | taste: 4 | feel: 4 | overall: 4

Golden yellow in color with a light orange hue and excellent clarity. Poured with a dense belgian-like frosty head that reduced fairly quickly but left sheets of lacings on the glass. Wheat, biscuit, banana aromas. with a bit of funky, fruity belgian yeast that is difficult to describe. On the lighter side of medium bodied with a light oily feel that surpresses the carbonaton a bit. Wheat, biscuit malt, and banana flavors up front that taper as hoppy lemon bitterness is introduced. Hops and underlying banana flavor carry through and lead to a tangy, not quite spicy feel toward the finish. Finishes with a clean feel accompanied by a lingering hop bittterness. Lots of different aromas and flavors with this ale.

IronLover, Jul 22, 2011
Photo of thagr81us
4.05/5  rDev +2.3%
look: 4 | smell: 4 | taste: 4 | feel: 4.5 | overall: 4

Had this one during the 'We Want The Funk!' tasting that was graciously hosted by beermeX2! Big thanks goes out to BRoss242 for sharing this one with the group! Served from bottle into a Mikkeller flute. Poured a hazy golden yellow with a one finger pure white head that subsided to a minimal amount slowly. Maintained nice lacing throughout the glass. The aroma was comprised of sweet malt, banana, and fruit. The flavor was of sweet malt, banana, fruit, and wheat. It had a light feel on the palate with high carbonation. Overall this was a pretty good brew. I did not pick up on any of the spices usually associated with this style unfortunately, but it allowed the rest of the flavors to step forward and take the show. This was a pretty nice and easy drinking brew and was a nice palate cleanser during the night. Definitely worth trying if you get the chance!

thagr81us, Jul 11, 2011
Photo of biegaman
4.5/5  rDev +13.6%
look: 4.5 | smell: 4.5 | taste: 4.5 | feel: 4.5 | overall: 4.5

Carnevale has some head on it! Seriously, it's the kind of thing you'd need a ladder to build. And the lacing it leaves, like the universe, seems to have no vestige of a beginning and no prospect of an end. It'd be perfect except its complexion is so bleak; a tired orange tone looks as faded as last year's straw and provides no highlights or clarity what so ever.

I don't know that this actually is what the Belgian countryside smells like in summer, but that's the image that popped into my mind after first sniffing this thing. The scent of hay and tall grass spew out the glass, followed by barnyard must and floral and fruity accents. Usually "stinky" is a bad word, but with regards to saisons it's greatly embraced.

Each sip, in a nutshell, is why I think saisons are so fantastic. Carnevale has an almost alarming spiciness - rammed into the palate with brute force, courtesy of a heavy-duty carbonation - that doesn't flame out so much as gradually wilt into an herbal, savory aftertaste. Tart and acidic notes dwell in orchard fruit (apple, pear) and barnyard flavours.

The beer isn't shy about its strength and wears its weight proudly. Bubbles just shy of champagne-level help scrub much of the warmth away but leave behind a soapy, herbal hop character that is very dry and earthy. It is gritty and pungent yet possesses a certain rustic charm that makes it curiously satisfying, as if you're afforded a taste of how ales once were.

I don't want to say that all American brewers are crafting Belgian ales that meet, or often exceed, the quality and complexity of their creators, but I think it's fair to say that Tomme Arthur puts out enough of them for the whole country. Carnevale is another one in a long line of Lost Abbey beers that remarkably captures the charm and character of a Belgian classic.

biegaman, Jul 11, 2011
Photo of Fikash
4.53/5  rDev +14.4%
look: 4 | smell: 5 | taste: 4.5 | feel: 4 | overall: 4.5

A: Very frothy head, nice golden color. Nice lace to the froth as well, sticking well to the side of my Duvel glass.

S: What an amazing smell. This is why I love Saisons. Tropical fruit, banana, Belgian yeast, they all come through. I can smell this beer from the table!

T: I don't think you even need to be a beer guy to know that this is an exceptional beer. I love the fruitiness of this style, I almost feel like I've bitten into some kind of tropical fruit rather than just finished sipping a beer. The yeast flavors are actually rather understated, which is definitely a big plus for me, as these Belgian styles are typically dominated by that flavor in my experience. There is a complexity in the flavor that I could only identify if my palette was more refined.

M: The carbonation is on the heavier side, but not unpleasant. Medium mouthfeel. Very drinkable.

Overall: This is an exception example of the Saison style, which seems to be becoming easier to find as more breweries are taking a crack at it. It's delicious, highly drinkable, and not overwhelming at a modest 6.5% I highly recommend it if you dig this style.

Fikash, Jul 10, 2011
Photo of Dreadnaught33
4.33/5  rDev +9.3%
look: 4 | smell: 4.5 | taste: 4.5 | feel: 4 | overall: 4

A: Hazy golden color with some sticky lacing and a small ring of white head.

S: Nice spicy and fruity smell, citrus rind, some sugary hard candy, chamomile, bread, nice overall rustic saison smell.

T: Great taste that follows the smell with some extra coriander and spice added. Orange and lemon citrus notes, wheat, and some nice subtle hop bite and dryness. I enjoy this greatly especially when it's hot out.

M: Semi tart and crisp with great sweet to citrus, medium and refreshing.

Dreadnaught33, Jul 07, 2011
Photo of BeerDawgs
3.83/5  rDev -3.3%
look: 5 | smell: 4 | taste: 3.5 | feel: 4 | overall: 4

A - A clear golden color, pores a thick head and tons of sticky lace that just never quits

S - Piny and floral hops and spices, with the yeast providing the earthy aromas that give it that saison style

T - Light malts and spicy with dry hop notes towards the end. I am not getting very much fruit flavors as i was hoping for

M - Medium bodied, seems well carbonated

D - A very good saison. I would have guessed a higher abv than the 6.5% it is. A very good beer

BeerDawgs, Jul 01, 2011
Photo of OWSLEY069
4.2/5  rDev +6.1%
look: 4 | smell: 4 | taste: 4 | feel: 4 | overall: 5

Pours a hazy orangeish color with an off white head. In the aroma, earthy and a small hop presence. In the taste, small tartness, earthy, fresh hops, and a nice dry yeast presence in the end. A small hop bite and medium to lighter bodied mouthfeel, with a small dry fresh hop in the aftertaste. A nice hop presence in a fine saison.

OWSLEY069, Jun 30, 2011
Photo of ckcanady
4.38/5  rDev +10.6%
look: 4 | smell: 4 | taste: 4.5 | feel: 4.5 | overall: 4.5

A- A golden brew with a generous white head. Good head retention that sticks around.
S- Spicy nose with hints of pine and clove while maintaining an earthyness.
T- Starts off spicy and citrusy. There is a pepperness to it and finishes with honey and clove.
M- A medium to light nice summer beer with medium carbonation
O- A spicy/ citrus Saison yet down to earth... the way it should be. Perfect for a summer night like tonight!

ckcanady, Jun 22, 2011
Photo of professordoktor
4.08/5  rDev +3%
look: 4.5 | smell: 4 | taste: 4 | feel: 4.5 | overall: 4

Bottle purchased at Mac's in Atlanta. Poured into a goblet (no tulip on hand, alas).

Based on the description - "A Saison-style blonde ale with American hops" - I'm expecting something somewhat like a slightly funkier Belgian blonde or golden.

Pours with a generous, slightly rocky off-white head that settles into a full cap of delicate lacing. Color is clear golden and more amber than many saisons.

Mineral, grapefruit, pear and well-balanced floral hops on the nose. Just a hint of honey sweetness detectable. None of the barnyard funk that accompanies many saisons, but it did have at least 5 minutes to breathe.

Crisp hop and tangy red grapefruit bitterness are the dominate flavors, with whispers of pear, sour apple, toffee and honey. A bit of astringency, too. It feels more boozy than the ABV would indicate.

Mouthfeel is not too thin, just right, with generous, fine, fizzy carbonation. It's quite dry, with an abrupt, clean finish after which a small memory of hops bitterness lingers.

Overall, I think my expectations were mostly on target. Just as much a golden as a blonde or saison, just imagine more concentrated and heavily hopped. As with most of similar styles, this would make a fine, versatile table beer.

professordoktor, Jun 21, 2011
Photo of vfgccp
4.22/5  rDev +6.6%
look: 4.5 | smell: 4.5 | taste: 4 | feel: 4 | overall: 4.5

A – A stellar head dominates the glass atop a medium orange honey body. The topography of the foam isn’t quite as crazy as Red Barn, and the color isn’t quite as bright, but both are great nonetheless.

S – Orange citrus, honeysuckle, and green grass. The middle brings in a spike of pink peppercorn, and the citrus fades just enough to let a soft bready malt peak through. Trace of banana-like esters deep in the nose.

T – Tangerine and sage opening into a grass and blackpepper mid. Bright herbal and honey sweetness on the backend.

M – Lightly mineral / peppery finish with a soft, lingering herbal bitterness. Medium body with great carbonation.

O – A saison on the citrus end of the style. On whole, I’d say the quality is on par with Red Barn. Delicious.

vfgccp, Jun 11, 2011
Photo of Neffbeer
4/5  rDev +1%
look: 4 | smell: 4 | taste: 4 | feel: 4 | overall: 4

750ml bottle, no bottle date visible.
Poured into a Portsmouth tulip.

A: The pour yields a light yellow colored brew with a boisterous white head. It is obviously very carbonated. The head displays pretty good retention and leaves behind a bunch of sticky lacing.

S: The nose is full of tart funky fruits, and a some noble hops. The yeast is evident as well with subtle notes of cloves and spices. Overall it displays a pleasant earthiness that I always find really inviting for the style.

T: It starts out with a healthy dose of spicy doughy yeast and a wave of herbal earthy hops. It has a distinct tartness with a pinch of salt in tow that lends itself well to the bitterness. The fruit notes surface mid palate with apples and pears being the most notable. It finishes dry and salty with a faint bitterness.

M: Medium to light bodied with a lot of carbonation present.

O: Solid saison from the Lost Abbey. It is not particularly earth shattering, but delivers what one would expect for the style.

Neffbeer, Jun 10, 2011
Photo of OldIronLungs
3.9/5  rDev -1.5%
look: 4 | smell: 4 | taste: 4 | feel: 4 | overall: 3.5

Poured into a chalice with a feisty head that slowly settles into a heavy ring on top of a hazy gold.

Nose is pretty dead on for the style - lots of yeast, light breads, and very subtle spice.

A sip is pleasant yeasty bread, citric and clean. Nice drying hop presence toward the finish. Overall medium body with playful carbonation.

This is a solid example of the style, but in my opinion, nothing more.

OldIronLungs, Jun 08, 2011
Photo of jsanford
3.95/5  rDev -0.3%
look: 4 | smell: 3.5 | taste: 4 | feel: 4.5 | overall: 4

750ml C&C Bottle poured into a Lost Abbey San Marco Tumbler.

A - Pours a clear, dark gold with a fluffy white head that settles down to a thick cap and leaves tons of soapy lacing. Very pretty!
S - Huge, yeasty aromas of rising bread dough with a touch of citrus, piney hops, and a touch of coriander and pepper.
T - More bread dough and spicy coriander accented by the large amounts of citrus hops. Lots of orange peel, pine resin, and grapefruit make this one of the more hop-forward Saisons I've encountered.
M - Very crisp, with a medium-thin body and sharp carbonation. Very dry and clean finish.
O - Solid example of a Saison, especially for those hot late-Spring/early Summer days!

jsanford, Jun 07, 2011
Photo of Knapp85
3.63/5  rDev -8.3%
look: 4 | smell: 4 | taste: 3.5 | feel: 3.5 | overall: 3.5

Pours out as a typical looking Saison brew. The beer is yellow and kind of cloudy looking. The smell is a little earthy but not too much, had some nice fresh hops aromas in there as well. The taste didn't give off much of a farmhouse taste but it did have a good floral quality to it. The mouthfeel overall was pretty good. I enjoyed this beer the carbonation was pretty good despite some of the issues lost abbey was having. This brew is worthy of trying I think.

Knapp85, Jun 03, 2011
Photo of glid02
4/5  rDev +1%
look: 4 | smell: 4 | taste: 4 | feel: 4 | overall: 4

On-tap at the Brick Store.

Pours a hazy yellow-golden color with a one-finger white head. The head recedes into a wispy layer on top leaving decent lacing.

Smells of light malts with good amounts of earthy hops. Also present are solid amounts of pears and lighter green apples, backed by slight spices.

Tastes similar to how it smells. Light malt flavors kick things off and are joined quickly by moderate amounts of pear flavors. Midway through the sip earthy hops come into play and dry things out a bit. Near the end of the sip light spices come into play, carrying through to a mildly bitter ending.

Mouthfeel is good. It’s got a nice thickness with smooth carbonation.

Drinkability is also good. I had no problems finishing my glass and could have another.

Overall this was a solid beer but lacked anything to really set it apart. Worth a shot but not worth seeking.

glid02, May 31, 2011
Photo of Cyberkedi
4.13/5  rDev +4.3%
look: 4.5 | smell: 4.5 | taste: 4 | feel: 4 | overall: 4

Strong, inviting aroma is malty, fruity and yeasty with a grassy hint. It pours a clear amber with a thick, fluffy, rather persistent white head. Mouth filling flavor is crisp and malty and has fruity and floral undertones as well as an herbal hint. Texture is fizzy and sassy, and can unexpectedly bite the tongue, so watch out! Another winner from Lost Abbey.

Cyberkedi, May 25, 2011
Carnevale from The Lost Abbey
89 out of 100 based on 649 ratings.