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Carnevale - The Lost Abbey

Not Rated.

Educational use only; do not reuse.
very good

677 Ratings
no score

(send 'em beer!)
Ratings: 677
Reviews: 305
rAvg: 3.96
pDev: 9.09%
Wants: 44
Gots: 63 | FT: 2
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: 677 | Reviews: 305 | Display Reviews Only:
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.

Photo of JBogan
3.69/5  rDev -6.8%
look: 3 | smell: 4 | taste: 3.5 | feel: 4.5 | overall: 3.5

Pours a hazy golden color with a very small white head which soon disappears and leaves minimal lacing. Nice color but otherwise unexciting to look at.

A large floral presence greets the nose, tempered by a good amount of earthiness. Some sweet honey in there as well.

Taste is much as the smell, but somewhat subdued. The sweetness plays a larger part as it warms. A bit of pear comes out as well. Somewhat of a chalky finish which kept the score from being higher.

Mouthfeel was very good. Medium bodied with lively carbonation, and a good smooth presence.

This is a style of beer I usually enjoy, and this one is average to slightly above average when compared against it's peers. Nothing outstanding but it's worth a try.

Photo of jwinship83
4.12/5  rDev +4%
look: 4 | smell: 4.5 | taste: 4 | feel: 4 | overall: 4

750ml corked and caged bottle poured into my duvel tulip. 2009 vintage picked up for around 9$.

A- this one pours out a cloudy glowing orange colored body with a small tightly knit white head. the head lasts a long time and leaves behind small marks of lacing.

S- the smell is very sweet. lots of fruits in here. apples, oranges, grapes, and lemons. very summer like. theres a noticeable amount of funky wild yeast also.

T- not nearly as sweet as the smell indicated. alot more earthy and musty "funk" as well. the fruits i could smell are still in here, just not as potent as i was expecting. lemon and orange peel, grapes, apples, and pear. not bad at all.

M- light bodied and crisp. well carbonated. nice dry finish from the wild yeast.

D- easy to finish and sessionable. this beer very much reminds me of summer and is certainly something i will be checking out next year. another lost abbey product with no QC issues. check this one out.

Photo of bulletrain76
3.7/5  rDev -6.6%
look: 4 | smell: 4 | taste: 3.5 | feel: 3 | overall: 4

75cl bottle. Gold with a medium white head and light lace. The nose is a nice fruity mix of hops and funky yeast, with s dusty, almost sour tinge. The flavor is hoppy with some lemony bitterness, a hint of acidity, and yeast fruitiness. A little sweeter than I expected but still finishing pretty dry. Light on the tongue with medium carbonation that seemed like it needed to be a little higher to give an optimum feel. There was a promise of a funkier, more acidic beer, but it turned out a little more straight forward and simple. Very drinkable stuff. The hops provide a nice balance and bitterness to the malt that is just a little sweet.

Photo of AgentZero
3.03/5  rDev -23.5%
look: 4.5 | smell: 4 | taste: 2.5 | feel: 2 | overall: 3

A - Amber with a hint of red that looks orange from the right angle. Beautiful two finger head on this that receded slowly with some very fine lacing down the side. Very nice looking beer.

S - Apples and maybe even grapes start off a fruity nose and the citrusy smell of orange peel and some nice floral and belgian yeast. Smells very good.

T - Does not taste as good as it smells. Not sweet enough, not yeasty enough, not dry enough, just not enough going on here. It's tart, with the taste of apples coming through, but it's a little hollow, finishes sour.

M - Pretty light bodied. Surprising lack of carbonation given the beautiful head on this. Just too flat, not good.

D - It's not hard to drink, I just don't like it and won't drink more.

Photo of Deuane
4.27/5  rDev +7.8%
look: 3.5 | smell: 4 | taste: 4.5 | feel: 4 | overall: 4.5

A-Copper tinted golden yellow with a medium bright white head that reduces slowly to a thin cap and leaves spotty lace..

S-Spicy zip from the yeast bit of lemon zing overlying a nice biscuit sweet malt base.

T-Earthy biscuit malt with a sharp blast from the spicy yeast/hop combo. Touch of tart lemon zest and a bit of herbal dryness in the finish.

M-Light bodied, sharp and crisp with nice lingering spicy flavours,

D-A rock solid saison with plenty of spicy zip and a nice touch of lemony zing. Easy to drink and flavourful. A well done take on one of my most favorite styles.

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

750ml corked and capped bottle bought online from Beermerchants.com...

Poured a nice light golden orange colour with a slight haze. White head poured pretty big, thick and fluffy with a pock marked topping then faded slowly to patchy covering... quite a lot of carbonation rushes to the surface... some good patchy lacing...

Aroma - Nice light toasted biscuit malts, spicy tart fruits (apples, pears, light lemon zest), some brett hints, grassy, hay notes, light nuttiness, metallic notes, quite floral, some talcum powder, quite yeasty, light caramel sweetness, faint rubbery hints...

Taste - Quite a lot of spicy yeastiness, tart (also overripe?) fruits (apples, pears, light grapefruits), again some brett, slight vegetal notes, metallic, some chalkiness, salty notes, light toasted biscuit malts, bready, light floral honey sweetness, faint caramel, grassy hops...

Feel - Pretty sharp and dry... Light body... Very quaffable...

Overall - A pretty good saison. Nothing groundbreaking but well worth a try...

Photo of pwoods
4.3/5  rDev +8.6%
look: 4.5 | smell: 4.5 | taste: 4 | feel: 4.5 | overall: 4.5

750ml corked and caged brown bottle poured into a flute/tulip. Notes.

A: Pours a glowing orangishs straw color. 1 1/2 fingers of pearly white head that dies slowly to a fat fluff. Nice lacing.

S: Spicy yeast with loads of other spices and some flowery aroma. Light crisp hops and sweet Belgian malts.

T/M: Great bread, earthy, harvest taste. Crisp spicy hops with loads of spices and spicy yeast. The yeast is fantastic. Light body and nice and crisp. Carbonation is great.

D: Very manageable ABV and drinks easy enough. Very tasty and unique.

Photo of PartyBear
3.73/5  rDev -5.8%
look: 4 | smell: 3.5 | taste: 4 | feel: 3.5 | overall: 3.5

Appearance: Hazy blonde honey colour with a soft pillowy white head. Very light carbonation.

Aroma: Quite sharp on the nose, with pungent lemon, and a multitude of spices. Also, faint hints of wheat.

Taste: Follows the nose in the sharpness, and zestiness, with a strong taste of lemon juice. Lots of grapefruit, and a subtle touch of hoppy bitterness.

Mouthfeel: Fresh and clean on the palete, with a deceptively light body.

Drinkability: Not my style but I can appreciate the quality of this beer, and it does seem to be surprisingly easy to drink.

Photo of BDLbrewster
3.41/5  rDev -13.9%
look: 2 | smell: 3.5 | taste: 4 | feel: 2.5 | overall: 3

Pours a mildly hazed orange hued peanut butter color. A small effervescent head off of a less than careful pour, tiny bits of visible carbonation.

The smell is rip with sour smelling funk on the front. Tons of spice and fruity yeast bringing up hints of ripe green apple and straw. Very little sweetness in the nose, mainly spice and mild barnyard.

The taste is full of barnyard and straw. Mild funk lends a slight apple like tartness that is greatly overshadowed by layers of earthy goodness. The hops impart a notable spiciness that is crushed by the dryness and lactic character of the finish.

The mouthfeel is in the medium bodied range, and the lack of carbonation is definitely noticed.

This is a true to style brew, albeit not overly notable. Good flavor with glaring weaknesses elsewhere, the 750 will satisfy my thirst for this one and I will not go out of my way to get another.

Photo of jrallen34
3.06/5  rDev -22.7%
look: 3.5 | smell: 2.5 | taste: 3 | feel: 2.5 | overall: 4

I drank this from the bottle into a chalice.

It pours a cloudy light orange with about a half finger head that goes quickly. There is some decent lacing.

The aroma is very strong with a sour citrus note, hops, and there is smell of yeast.

The taste is interesting, and but plain. The mostly tastes hoppy, light notes of citrus. Its very drinkable, smooth taste through out but nothing overly special.

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

2008 edition. This one's carbonation edged off, still a nice summer saison. Light cloudy colour, pleasant spicy odor. Easy mouthfeel, with some caramel, zesty cardamom, orange citrus, pepper, nutmeg, cloves. grassy hops build in finish. Another decent and different Lost Abbey.
2012 edition much better owing to fresh lemony taste and hops n finish.This rating is the 2012.

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

on tap at the brewery in San Marcos. pours a crystal clear pale golden color with no head and no lacings.

aroma is of light belgian yeast with a distinct funk and light sourness. a touch of pale malt is present as well. a wonderful saison in the nose.

taste is more of the same with a subtle pale malt character and a light funk and sour character close behind. nicely composed and perfectly subtle. the sour note from the aroma is less pronounced here, which is a bit of a let down.

mouthfeel is light bodied and refreshing with just enough funk to give it a 'saison' like character. finishes on a crisp note of residual funk. very fresh on the palate.

drinkability is good. very refreshing and light on the palate. just what a good saison should be. excellent. cheers!

Photo of rfgetz
4.3/5  rDev +8.6%
look: 4 | smell: 4 | taste: 4.5 | feel: 4 | overall: 4.5

A: Cloudy. Golden straw in color. Thin, whispy white head. Good retention.

S: Light, delicate balance of citrus, yeast, pepper, bread.

T: Once again, delicate balance of citrus, yeast, complexity added with white pepper. Amazingly refreshing.

M: Medium bodied, plesent, refreshing mouthfeel. perfect carbonation level.

D: Was sitting outside at the Belgian Cafe on a humid summer night and this beer, served cold was perfectly refreshing and light, without sacrificing flavor and complexity.

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

I received this bottle in Feb. 2008 as part of the Patron Saints Club, so this is the older version of Carnevale, prior to them adding Brettanomyces to the recipe.

Poured into my Unibroue tulip glass a golden straw colored hazy fluid with bubbles filtering to the top constantly. A generous rocky white head formed of two fingers width, but then receded to lacing at the edges and a thing ring atop the beer.

The smell is sweet fruity but with an earthy background, with a strong spice presence, probably coriander and some orange peel...classic additions to any Saison! The smell is fairly powerful.

A drink reveals a very refreshing and complex beer. I will attempt to record the experience of my taste buds, but i am sure it will be inadequate...The initial nose has a nice subdued malty sweetness with a tinge of orange peel, but is immediately overtaken by a powerful spicy presence and bitterness which lingers through two more changes of taste. After the powerful abdomen of spice recedes a bit, there is another hint of malty sweetness, but with a darker flavor than the initial taste. The finish is long and dry, and mouth-stiningly spicy. I don't usually spend this much verbiage on taste, but as my rating suggests, this is an exceptional taste. I don't take that rating lightly!

The mouthfeel is very nice with a high carbonation that keeps the beer coating your mouth long after the swallow.

Drinkability for me is very good, but this is a complex beer that deserves a critical pallet. If you love Saisons, seek this party out!

Photo of rye726
4.45/5  rDev +12.4%
look: 4.5 | smell: 4.5 | taste: 4 | feel: 5 | overall: 5

Pours a hazy straw color with a silky beige head. Nice lacing and retention. Nose has a collection of tropical and citrus fruits, bready malts, zesty spices, herbal hops and musky barnyard funk. Taste not quite as impressive, but well balanced. Fruity malts, earthy hops, peppery spices and a subtle wild yeast presence. Crisp body is well carbonated. Tasty stuff indeed.

Photo of dirtylou
3.68/5  rDev -7.1%
look: 4 | smell: 3.5 | taste: 3.5 | feel: 4 | overall: 4

750ml bottle, scooped at west lakeview liquors in chicago - i'm a sucker for the port/lost abbey line for some reason so i picked up a bunch of bottles

split with the lady, paired with a prepared thai-curry dish

cell phone notes

appearance: served in a delirium chalice, hazy apricot body, fluffy beige cap with light retention

smell: musty yeast, grassy hops, melon - a little light on the funk

taste: a good brew but a little underwhelming for the saison style - white pepper, grassy hops, melon, white corn, minimal yeast

mouthfeel: moderate-light, active yeast

drinkability: good

Photo of TexIndy
3.37/5  rDev -14.9%
look: 4 | smell: 4.5 | taste: 3 | feel: 2.5 | overall: 3

Got from ummagum - many thanks! Poured from a 750ml bottle into a Duvel tulip. 2009 edition. It was a hazy golden honey color with a good carb stream in the center. It opened with a low pop and the carb stream in the center is markedly less than other beers I've had in this glass lately so seems to have somewhat of the LA carb issue. Slight sliding lace. It had an average sized fizzy white head that dissipated into a collar and some center foam.

The aroma was really good. Classic saison with some brett funk thrown in. A good sniffer but could have used a little more spice and dry to it. The taste was good but not as good as the aroma. The low spice level really showed here. Starts out with a little flavor and then does a slow build but never crests then fades to a watery finish. With that good an aroma it's hard to believe the lack of flavor. Mouthfeel is hurt by the watery taste and too low of a carb level.

Overall, a bit of a disappointment especially after getting the first whafts of aroma. Smells great but lacks in flavor with watery finish. Lost Abbey continues to be wild hits or misses for me and this one is a miss. At this price point, I don't recommend. One and done for me.


Photo of Murchmac
3.82/5  rDev -3.5%
look: 3.5 | smell: 4 | taste: 4 | feel: 3.5 | overall: 3.5

2009 bottle, no carbonation issues...

Off the wall straw color with lots of tiny bubbles. If this beer were the man in the mirror, that man would have a cloudy body with a white foamy head that gives way to ring around the collar.

King of Pop the top off and you get a whiff of the funk. Not the funk of forty thousand years, but that funk that makes you just wanna ....ooow (grabs crotch and moonwalks)... Some citrus hops and candied malts too.

This beer has to be starting something, so it starts off with that wild funk. Metallic to me, but biting sour that I dont like. It Rocks with you all night until the hops and sweetness kick and rides the boogie....By the end, the evil is the thriller.

Say Say Say what you want, but Sir Paul McCartney himself would argue its human nature to like this beer. Carnevale is not my lover, its just a beer, but its a pretty good one. RIP MJ.

Photo of scruffwhor
3.57/5  rDev -9.8%
look: 3 | smell: 3.5 | taste: 3.5 | feel: 4.5 | overall: 3.5

Pours a semi-hazey, dull golden hay color. Maybe some faint amber hues mixed in there as well. The aroma is sweet toasted malts, light apple juice, and some unindetifiable herbs. Starts off sweet from the malts and fruity from the yeast. The middle is more grainy and herbal with the effervescant bubbles throughout the entire palate. I love the carbonation, but the mix of favors don't segue well from one o the other. Not bad though.

Photo of BWH3
4.13/5  rDev +4.3%
look: 4.5 | smell: 4 | taste: 4 | feel: 4 | overall: 4.5

A: Amazing slightly hazy gold with puffy 2 finger white head. Extremely still.

S: Melon and musty yeast aroma. The hops add a refined mineral and hay scent.

T: A lovely sweet cereal grain combined with a light honey and melon. The bitterness is earthy.

M: More thick than expected. A bit like syrup. Sticky thick head. The thickness is unusual for Belgian beers.

D: Quite delicious. Delicate and relatively complex. More like a Belgian Golden Ale than a Saison or Farmhouse because it lacks the musty and funky yeast flavors. Instead flavor relies on the balanced and smooth malt flavors.

Photo of Gehrig
4.42/5  rDev +11.6%
look: 4 | smell: 4.5 | taste: 4.5 | feel: 4 | overall: 4.5

On vacation in Galena, IL, I grabbed this at the excellent Galena River Wine and Cheese Shop--literally the first place I've seen something from the well-regarded Lost Abbey here in Illinois. Terrific find, and well worth the price.

Hazy blond body with two fluffy fingers of white foam, nice lacing and duration. Funky but very fruity smell--lots of citrus mitigates the farmhouse funk to offer a distinct and rich aroma base. Plenty of lemon, orange rind, pear and even a bit of melon confront the nose and, thankfully, the palate. The smell is not unlike a tripel.

The fruit flavor is nicely offset by a dry flavor, but much more than many a Saison, this is much more sweet than sour. I don't mind that, and find it still a fine representative of the style. I'm admittedly a bit torn on judging the mouthfeel. I like it quite a bit, but am leering away from a 4.5 primarily because it could be a bit more effervescent. That said, the smooth malty flavor and texture are more than welcome on my palate.

Excellent Saison, one I'll be happy to procure again and one that ensures I will seek out more from the storied Lost Abbey. Very well done. I'm certainly impressed.

Photo of tdawgydog
4.03/5  rDev +1.8%
look: 4.5 | smell: 4 | taste: 4 | feel: 4 | overall: 4

This was the last bottle that I had remaining from my trip to San Diego. Saison meets West Coast Hops. Living on the East Coast you almost forget what hops taste like;-)

A - Pours a nice golden cloudy mixture. I did my best to get the unfiltered goodness off the bottom of the bottle but couldn't get it all.
S - Slight scent of alcohol and maybe a little bit of lavander.
T - Very tasty... Take your favorite Saison and add a whole bunch of hops. Gotta love the West Coast
D - Enjoyable, goes down smooth. Very enjoyable, pretty hoppy.
M - Nice body to this beer.

Before my trip to the West Coast I would say that I wasn't a huge fan of the uber hops, but I am a changed man. I can't wait to go back!

Carnevale from The Lost Abbey
89 out of 100 based on 677 ratings.