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Carnevale - The Lost Abbey

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very good

699 Ratings
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Ratings: 699
Reviews: 305
rAvg: 3.96
pDev: 9.09%
Wants: 44
Gots: 71 | FT: 3
Brewed by:
The Lost Abbey visit their website
California, United States

Style | ABV
Saison / Farmhouse Ale |  6.50% ABV

Availability: Winter

Notes & Commercial Description:
Beer added by: seaoflament on 02-12-2008

Brewed in celebration of Lent and Easter season, Carnevale is light bodied Saison, using Brettanomyces along with Amarillo and Simcoe hops to generate flavor and depth. Carnevale’s complexity grows with time. The citrus notes tend to wane and the wild yeast rears its wonderfully tasting head.

2008 (first release) did not have brettanomyces.
Beer: Ratings & Reviews
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Ratings: 699 | Reviews: 305
Photo of zeff80
4/5  rDev +1%
look: 4 | smell: 4 | taste: 4 | feel: 4 | overall: 4

A - Poured out a cloudy, straw yellow color with a large, white, bubbly head of foam. It left some sticky rings of lace.

S - It smelled of barnyard funk and sour fruits. A touch of caramel aroma, too.

T - It tasted like a good farmhouse ale - funky, phenolic and spiced. Just enough sweet caramel malt to combat the barnyard taste.

M - It was crisp, sharp and extremely dry. A medium bodied ale that drinks fairly easy despite all the nuances in flavor.

D - Lost Abbey does it again. Another really, really good brew.

Photo of spoons
3.58/5  rDev -9.6%
look: 4 | smell: 3.5 | taste: 3.5 | feel: 4 | overall: 3.5

On tap at Fathers Office.

Pours a Pale mild orange color. Seems to have a pretty weak head here. A fair ammount of lacing following.

Smells acidic in a wheaty way. Some spices coming from the yeast as well. Not a bad armoma just not a great one.

Tastes a little sour/acidic. Not that great. Gets a little sweeter and spicer after the first couple sips.

This is a decent beer but its definitely not my favorite and probably wont order it again

Photo of pastradul
3.5/5  rDev -11.6%
look: 3.5 | smell: 3.5 | taste: 3.5 | feel: 3.5 | overall: 3.5

Pours a deep gold, with a thick bright white head. Lives some lacing but not a lot.

I a mild bready yeast smell to it, but nothing over powering with a balancing dark fruit aroma.

The mouth feel is tingly from the high carb...but his is very pleasant. helps break up the sweetness of the fruit a bit.

finishes on the dryer smooth side.

A great beer to start to session of with. All the flavors are so subtle, gets the palat primed for something a bit heavier!

Photo of BretSikkink
4.05/5  rDev +2.3%
look: 4 | smell: 4 | taste: 4 | feel: 3.5 | overall: 4.5

Golden color, white head is served tall but recedes and leaves naught but some bubbles. Nose is shy to me, but includes some fruitiness and subtle spices.

To me, it falls on the fence between a saison and a biere de garde: solid carbonation, but the mouthfeel isn't quite "there" - meaning, I guess, in Flanders. Lots of fruit, with pears and pepper coexisting in a strange field with lemongrass and hay. Right on the money, but in a crowded field it doesn't stand out.

Bottom line: get it on tap if you see it.

Photo of ShadesOfGray
4.07/5  rDev +2.8%
look: 4 | smell: 4.5 | taste: 4 | feel: 3.5 | overall: 4

Poured from a 750ml bottle into my Delirium Tremens snifter/tulip glass. Pours a pale golden color...fills the glass shiny as the sun gold/hazy...with a nice size creamy white head. Head has decent retention...finally settles in a thin creamy ring around the outside. Lacing is fizzy and quick sliding.

Aroma resembles a great typical saison. Crisp, citrus, funky...a little spicy. Mouth watering!

Flavor is solid for its style. Has the typical light fruit, grass-earth tones, a little funk, a small amount of spices. Booze isn't even detectable. Crisp and light mouthfeel, light body, high carbonation...which is nice to see from Lost Abbey! With that said, their still one of my favorite breweries. Carnevale is an easy drinker...I am easily going to finish this whole 750ml myself.

Photo of nickd717
4.22/5  rDev +6.6%
look: 3.5 | smell: 4 | taste: 4.5 | feel: 3.5 | overall: 4.5

This is a review of the 2009 version, which was "spiked with brett." I had previously enjoyed the 2008 quite a bit. 750ml bottle from K&L Redwood City. I had heard some questionable things about this beer, but I thought it was great!

Pours a slightly hazy golden color with a one-finger white head.

Aroma is rather funky and bretty. Some sweet malt and floral hop notes come through as well.

Flavor is mainly slightly sweet pale malt and bretty funk. You get some of the normal Belgian yeast in there as well, which lends a nice green apple quality. Some pepperiness, but not as much so as in the 2008.

Somewhat dry and crisp on the palate with medium body and fairly lively carbonation.

A very nice beer overall. I had no problem taking down the whole 750 and enjoyed every sip.

Photo of tigg924
4/5  rDev +1%
look: 4 | smell: 4 | taste: 4 | feel: 4 | overall: 4

Appearance: cloudy, orange-yellow in color, 1/3 inch head, high carbonation

Smell: pepper, orange, hay, and lemon

Taste: pepper, orange, hay, coriander, and lemon

Mouthfeel: medium carbonation, light bodied, dry, sweet start with a more bitter sour finish

Drinkability:A nice and dry, flavorful saison that is good not great for the style. I do like the flavor combinations. I would get this again, but there are other Lost Abbey beers I would get sooner.

Photo of wethorseblanket
3.95/5  rDev -0.3%
look: 4 | smell: 4 | taste: 4 | feel: 3.5 | overall: 4

Pours a mirky, cloudy orangish-yellow haze with a decent fluffy white head. Yeasty nose with spicy notes like clove and allspice. Some citrus oil scents also seem very inviting. Biscuit bite is up front with a dry and slightly tart finish. A bit of fruitiness and some Brett funk in there too. Refreshing and pleasant. Lacing clings well. Wishing there was more funk. Overall a good one.

Photo of TommyW
3.85/5  rDev -2.8%
look: 4 | smell: 4 | taste: 4 | feel: 3.5 | overall: 3.5

A- Dark, gold body with a very thin, white head.

S- Lots going on. Fruits like apple and pear, straw and some funky elements as well.

T- Just of touch of malty sweetness with some deeper fruit elements of apple, grape and pear. There's a slight sourness that is quite pleasant. Some funky notes and a touch of floral hops; fairly dry and crisp overall.

M- Clean and crisp with a pretty easy carbonation.

D- An easy drinking saison for sure, but also a very unique one, different from most i've had.

Photo of emmasdad
3.97/5  rDev +0.3%
look: 3.5 | smell: 4 | taste: 4 | feel: 4 | overall: 4

2009 vintage. Pours a dark, hazy yellow color, with a fairly good sized white head. This one has a good funky nose, with lemon, hay and other dried grasses. On the palate I get a well carbonated beer, with barnyard funk, citrus, dark spices and sweet malt. Another solid effort from the Lost Abbey.

After trying this one the other night, the brett is really doing wonderful things. This one, already good, is getting better.

Photo of timtim
4.5/5  rDev +13.6%
look: 4.5 | smell: 4.5 | taste: 4.5 | feel: 4.5 | overall: 4.5

vintage 2009. yum. this beer turns my gears for sure. burnt gold with a slight haze and a nice, white head that shrinks but never disappears and leaves splotchy lace as the beer is drained. not really sure how it could look much better, but i'm not in to 5's. a lot going on in the nose although it seems to all be harmonizing nicely. the first things that come to mind are lemon, grape, apple and pastry. almost like a really good, proper apple pie that is laced with lemon. some pear and horse blanket as well as musty cellar and grass. just like the nose suggests, the taste is very well balanced. all the tastes are defined yet blended very well and the acid levels are just right to produce a lingering finish that is extremely pleasant. really good job balancing bitter and sour. hops come out in the middle and then gently dance with the sour funk in the end. earthy stuff comes out more as it warms up. soft. medium body on the light side of medium. impressive. tomme arthur deserves every bit of hype he gets. i need more!!

Photo of SDHoffers
4.05/5  rDev +2.3%
look: 4 | smell: 4 | taste: 4 | feel: 3.5 | overall: 4.5

Bright yet murky with an intense earthiness in the nose. You get a little of that pungent hay barn smell that some saisons present. Taste is pleasant and not overwhelming. I like that this beer laces nicely and a little more than other saisons. I think the drinkability of this particular beer is where it wins in my book. Very nice. No real bite in the back of the throat and great on a warm day.

Photo of billab914
4/5  rDev +1%
look: 4 | smell: 4 | taste: 4 | feel: 4 | overall: 4

Poured from a 750ml bottle into my lost Abbey stemware. poured a hazy pale straw color with a thin white lacing scattered across the top of the beer.

The aroma has floral and fruity notes with some citrus, bready sweetness, sour apple, yeast and a little bit of funk to it. The aroma has a nice smooth, refreshing and complex smell to it.

The taste has a good amount of fruity citrus to it with a smooth dry sweetness in the finish. The sweetness is nicely balanced out by the tartness and moderate bitterness. It has a light sour funk to it, just enough to make it noticeable.

Mouthfeel is on the lighter side with above average carbonation. Drinkability is good, it's a very good tasting, easy drinking and refreshing beer. Very good all around beer.

Photo of WOTO97
3.63/5  rDev -8.3%
look: 4 | smell: 3.5 | taste: 4 | feel: 3.5 | overall: 3

A: cloudy lemonade with slight pale orange, initial pour gave thin soapy head with thin and nominal web-like lacing

S: nice floral yeast character, faint rose petals, soft citrus-lemon crispness, as it warms some interesting funk (slight vinegar) becomes present

T: light lemon zest, soft white pepper on finish, faint doughy malt in background, grass and wildflowers, some straw, interesting mild hop bite, barnyard character becomes much more prevalent as it comes closer to room temp

M: light chalkiness with creamy finish, bright carbonation feel on front that leads to sticky throat feel, still finishes relatively dry

D: the Brett doesn't really hit the palate until the finish and leaves a prominant lingering flavor that balances against some nice hop bitterness; pretty interesting slightly against-style effort that works pretty well; likely a one-and-done

Photo of jsapunor
4.18/5  rDev +5.6%
look: 4 | smell: 3.5 | taste: 4.5 | feel: 4 | overall: 4.5

Pours a nice orange/yellow color into a tulip glass. The head is dense and white which dissipates slowly leaving a good amount of lacing.

Fruits dominate the aroma but there is a definite hop presence that I was expecting only because the label told me to look for it. A nice spicy aroma.

Tangerine, orange, liveley spices and a hop presence in the flavor. This is a dry, lively package. A "well mannered" saison if you will. It doesn't blast you with the horseblanket barnyard sensation but delights with an extremely smooth blend of flavors. The crisp clean dryness is very refreshing.

A medium alcohol level, good carbonation and a body on the lighter side with just enough tartness to make it interesting.

This is an extremely easy to drink saison that was much better and more interesting than I anticipated.

Photo of sweemzander
4.08/5  rDev +3%
look: 4.5 | smell: 4 | taste: 4 | feel: 4.5 | overall: 4

750mL bottle poured into a tulip. No bottled date, just has 2009 on the label.

(A)- Pours a hazy golden straw yellow color that produced a good foamy white head that simmered down to a light layer after a minute or so. It coated the sides of the glass as it dissipated.

(S)- Lemon grass & wheat-like hay with a good bit of yeast & clay. A barnyard horseblanket/dew-wet grass thing going on. Almost biscuit-like.

(T)- Very dry, yet surprisingly fruity with plenty of lemon & a tiny hint at bananas. Bitter & almost piney from an obvious generous hop addition. Slightly grassy behind the hops. Finishes dry too with bits of wheat & pine.

(M)- A great carbonation level for the style; bubbly but not quite at a fizzy level. The fruits balance well with the dry bittering hops, particularly that hint of creamy banana really meshes well with the rest of the beer.

(D)- A solid saison made even more dynamic with a more pronounced hop addition than what is usually found in the style. Not as 'funky' as what you would typically consider in this style, but why follow what others do? I am enjoying this one thoroughly.

Photo of nectar14
4.33/5  rDev +9.3%
look: 4.5 | smell: 4 | taste: 4.5 | feel: 4 | overall: 4.5

From a 2009 750 mL:

A- Clear at the top of the bottle, cloudy near the bottom. Rocky white head and good lacing down the glass.

S- Banana and grains. Later, with more yeast, some cloves.

T- Slight citrus, flowers, grain, and tropical fruits. Not aggressive, quite nice. In the same ballpark as a good hefeweizen, but more rustic.

M- Medium in body but not sticky or sweet. Gentle carbonation.

D- Really drinkable. I put back a 750 mL fairly quick... to my surprise. Disappears fast.

Really enjoyed this. I guess I don't have enough experience to say this was a classic Saison, but it meets the criteria of being fairly dry, refreshing, and somewhat rustic. Nice all around.

Photo of Duhast500
4.82/5  rDev +21.7%
look: 4.5 | smell: 5 | taste: 5 | feel: 4.5 | overall: 4.5

Poured froma 220z. bottle into a over sized wine glass.

The color is a clear gold with about two fingers of foamy white head and some nice lacing.

The smell is pretty funky. Some green bean or vegtable flavor in the nose. It has a yeast flavor that mixes with some slight fruit flavor as it sits and breaths.

The taste is sweet at first with a smooth with some nice dry fruit flavor. I have a white grape flavor that is followed by a slight green apple flavor. There is a slight rasin flavor as well at the end.

The feel is a pretty easy drinking feel to this beer and is slightly acidy but very pleasing. The first Lost Abbey beer I have had and I am very happy with this experience.

Photo of champ103
4.44/5  rDev +12.1%
look: 3.5 | smell: 4.5 | taste: 4.5 | feel: 4.5 | overall: 4.5

A: Pours a hazy golden/orange color. A one finger bubble white head forms, and recedes in a few minutes. Some sticky lace is left behind.
S: Up front is a good dose of funky barnyard and yeast. Sweet malt and some light fruity esters of apples, pears, and lemon. Grassy and floral hops. There are lots of complexities in the nose. Really inviting.
T: Does not disappoint. Funky barnyard and yeast again. Lots of fruity ester sweetness. Ripe apples are dominate. Lighter lemon flavors are present. There is a very light bitterness that makes for a great balance. Grassy and floral hops. Really well balanced.
M/D: A medium body and carbonation. Very creamy and smooth though. Dry and crisp. So smooth and easy to drink. I am having no problem finishing the bomber.

This is a great Saison. Lots of subtle complexities. There are a ton of hops, but they are never overpowered by the funky yeast and sweet fruity esters. Highly recommended.

Photo of maximum12
3.9/5  rDev -1.5%
look: 4 | smell: 4 | taste: 4 | feel: 4 | overall: 3.5

Well, this proves it. I need to drink more or collect less beer from the four corners of the Earth. I'm not certain, but I believe I bought this in April of 2008 in Seattle & shipped it home to myself. Did this 6.5% beer hold up to almost two years of unintentional aging?

Pours well, crystal-clear yellow with evident carbonation in my Otter Creek pint glass. Smells like yeast & green apples, just a touch of gritty west-coast earth thrown in for good measure.

Carnevale is tame & quiet for a saison. Due to the "aging" or not, there is barely any hint of funk in the taste. First impression is of sweet, sweet fruit salad with a little Belgian candied sugar sprinkled on top to ruin the health factor. Significant amount of spicy kick as the beer runs its course into my abs of steel, & only the faint aftertaste of saison yeast & rot.

I'm not always feeling compelled to talk about mouthfeel - it's generally wet, and good - but this brew is smooth, slick, welcoming, light, & airy. For all that I'm not sure I could put away a whole bomber; a half will do me just fine, thank you very much.

Very good beer. One of the better saisons I've had, & certainly the best I've had for the first time in quite a while.

Photo of ClockworkOrange
4/5  rDev +1%
look: 4 | smell: 4 | taste: 4 | feel: 4 | overall: 4

This one has been hiding in the back of psycohops fridge for more than six months. Thanks for sharing this one with me Bob! A corked 750ml bottle purchased at Abe's in Bethlehem for $9 - 2009 vintage on the label. Uncorked and poured into a pair of shaker glasses. The ale appears a hazed apricot color with a good two fingers of creamy light rust colored foam. Nose and flavors consist of musty, funky brett-like notes, albeit somewhat mild, (good in this case), lemon, apples, pear, spicy yeast, citrus-y. At least a notch better than medium bodied for the style with ample carbonation as well. Very nice! Thanks again Bob!

Photo of TheNapkin
4.32/5  rDev +9.1%
look: 4 | smell: 4.5 | taste: 4.5 | feel: 4 | overall: 4

A stellar beer, especially considering I bought a 22 oz bottle for under $6 in San Diego, CA, not far from the Lost Abbey brewery in San Marcos.

The beer labels itself as a hoppy saison, though the hops do not overpower the naturally delicious flavors of the saison. No drowning out of flavor with too much citrus or mustiness. The Belgian flavors are first and foremost on the palate. The funk of the beer is pronounced and enjoyable, a sweet and acidic brew. Less dry than Saison Dupont and without the skunk some SD's suffer from. The beer is almost a clone of Fantome's original Saison in terms of flavor and funk. I will be buying more of these very soon. The only downside was that the beer was slightly undercarbonated, but this didn't affect its drinkability.

Photo of drpimento
4/5  rDev +1%
look: 4 | smell: 4 | taste: 4 | feel: 4 | overall: 4

pretty damn good saison but it was a tad sweet. Poured with a nice white head and good lace. Color is a clear amber gold. Aroma is spicey, grassy, light malt, yeast, bread, and bit of sour fruit. Flavor's the same and big on the saison flavors but a little over sweet. Body is decent and so is the carbonation. Little strong alcohol in the finsih. Maybe a session.

Photo of prototypic
4/5  rDev +1%
look: 4 | smell: 4 | taste: 4 | feel: 4 | overall: 4

Carnevale pours a gold color. There's a slight haze clouding it, but it's not heavy. Plenty of light cuts through brightening its appearance. A light cream colored cap tops it off. It reaches around two fingers deep and is very slow to recede. Lacing was moderate. All in all, it's a nice looking beer.

The nose is good, but seems just a bit underpowered. It's very fruity. Apple, pear, and lemon announce their presence early. It's somewhat musky and earthy, but that aspect is rather subdued. It has a rather prominent herbal smell, though I can't identify the specific herbs or spices. Yeast is noted. It has enough Belgian resemblance to get by, but it's not as strong as I'd like. Alcohol is blended very well and isn't noticeable. Not too surprising for a 6.5% beer. It's good. A little more muscle and Belgian yeast would improve it quite a bit.

The flavor profile is on-par with the nose. It's a little fruity and sweet initially. Apple, lemon, and pear are the most prominent fruit flavors. It's herbal and spicy, but I can't do much better with identifying them here. There's a little pepper and clove. Suffice it to say it's a good blend that works well with the fruit flavors. Yeast is noted, but it doesn't have the strong Belgian yeast flavor it needs. What is here isn't bad, it's just not quite what it needs to really shine. There's a little alcohol, but not much. For a beer of its stature, it's spot-on. It finishes with an herbal taste that's somewhat dry.

Carnevale has a light body that inches toward medium with a little warming. It's nice and smooth. Carbonation is active, but the bubbles seem light. Drinkability is good. The flavor here is quite good. Not far away from special. It goes down easy and the abv is not scary at all. I'm enjoying the 750 quite a bit.

Carnevale is a very solid release from Lost Abbey. It's not in the upper echelon of their release, but it is quite good. Personally, I'd like a more pronounced Belgian yeast flavor. That would easily ratchet up the score for me. But, that really is nitpicking. Carnevale's a really good Saison that's well worth checking out.

Photo of TheJollyHop
4.62/5  rDev +16.7%
look: 4 | smell: 4.5 | taste: 4.5 | feel: 5 | overall: 5

This is definitely a beer to get the good times rolling! Refreshing and crisp. A nice one finger head on top of a pale to medium amber body. Steady stream of bubbles but the head dissipates fairly quickly.

Strong scents of yeast, spiciness from pepper, and some floral hops.

A lot of complexities going on with the taste. Very sweet upfront with some tang. Only the faintest bitterness explosion at the end. Orange citrus and biscuits noticeable early on, while yeast and pepper dominate the after taste. Nicely balanced with a dry finish.

Mouthfeel is medium carbonated and silky smooth; excites the palate. Overall a refreshingly crisp brew.

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Carnevale from The Lost Abbey
89 out of 100 based on 699 ratings.