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Lips Of Faith - La Folie - New Belgium Brewing

Not Rated.
Lips Of Faith - La FolieLips Of Faith - La Folie

Displayed for educational use only; do not reuse.
BA SCORE
95
world-class

3,069 Ratings
THE BROS
95
world-class

(view ratings)
Ratings: 3,069
Reviews: 961
rAvg: 4.26
pDev: 10.56%
Wants: 473
Gots: 617 | FT: 35
Brewed by:
New Belgium Brewing visit their website
Colorado, United States

Style | ABV
Flanders Oud Bruin |  7.00% ABV

Availability: Year-round

Notes/Commercial Description:
Flemish Sour Brown Ale fermented in stainless then transferred to barrels for 1-4 years of aging then blended to taste.

(Beer added by: BeerAdvocate on 09-22-2002)
Beer: Ratings & Reviews
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Ratings: 3,069 | Reviews: 961 | Display Reviews Only:
Photo of ggaughan
4.83/5  rDev +13.4%
look: 4.5 | smell: 5 | taste: 5 | feel: 4.5 | overall: 4.5

Served on tap at Monk's Cafe for their New Belgium dinner the other night. The beer poured a hazy redish amber color with a nice pink ring around the glass, solid lacing. The nose was a solid amount of cherries and a bit of barny funk. The taste is a wonderful tart cherry flavor that is so pleasing to the taste buds in my mouth. There is also a nice peppery sensation and overall this is one damn fine, smooth beer.

ggaughan, Apr 14, 2007
Photo of custardcb
4.05/5  rDev -4.9%
look: 4 | smell: 4.5 | taste: 4 | feel: 3.5 | overall: 4

Brought back to me from the brewery over the holidays. Been hanging onto the bottle for a few months and finally decided to crack it open. It was hand bottle number 06-2338

Appearance: Poured into a goblet it has a murky amber color that is pretty hazy. A think lacy head settled onto the top leaving a nice trail down the sides of the glass.

Smell: I popped open this and the aroma came flooding out at me. Nice sour smell kind of like cider. Other hints I'm getting are citrus, musky wood, and sweet cherry. A very floral aroma overall

Taste: It has a light sweetness to it before the sour hits you, however once it does it is like a train. Sour skittles don't have a thing on this. Dark cherries are prevalent again along with cranberry and lemon.

Mouthfeel: It makes you pucker up that is for sure. It has a real long finish that refuses to go away. The hops are kicking in big time.

Drinkability: You really have to be craving something fruiting and sour if you are going to open a bottle of this up. A long sipper that I'm going to be working on for awhile before this bottle is empty. Overall it was a real treat and I'm glad I got it.

custardcb, Apr 12, 2007
Photo of barleywinebrewer
4.7/5  rDev +10.3%
look: 4 | smell: 4.5 | taste: 5 | feel: 4.5 | overall: 4.5

thanks to oxymoron for this via trade!

Every now and then a beer comes along makes you take notice. This is one such beer! Complex, sour, dry, oaky, damn its hard to describe. I've had a few "wild" ales - gueze, flanders red, lambic and american wild. I think I have a new #1 or #2 favorite within this spectrum.

worth the price of entry!

barleywinebrewer, Mar 23, 2007
Photo of Vancer
4.63/5  rDev +8.7%
look: 4.5 | smell: 4.5 | taste: 5 | feel: 4.5 | overall: 4

Bottle 1 of 2 graciously provided by andrewtraughber and babydoc for Xmas and my BA annv.

A Champaign pop of the cork, and the musty sour aroma is immediately detected. The snifter is not having any problem releasing sour ale aromas; my nose is already scrunching up. Also, I’m enjoying the reddish hue mixed with the brown in this pour. Great ivory head tops it off nicely.

Holy moly, this is the sourest brew I’ve ever had. My throat almost closes off trying to keep it from going down. But it goes, finishing so sharp, tart, and tangy. Plumish type fruits and cherry mingle around in there, hiding a bit but making their presence known.

Drop a sample of this off to some “all beers taste the same” person.

What a classic.

Vancer, Mar 03, 2007
Photo of sinstaineddemon
3.7/5  rDev -13.1%
look: 4.5 | smell: 4 | taste: 3.5 | feel: 4 | overall: 3.5

thanks to babydoc for this bottle

A - this ale pours a hazy dark brown, that is significantly darker on top than beneath, almost like a black and tan, a half finger of tan head that patches quickly, too hazy to note carbonation

S - sour tart cherries dominate the aroma, there is definitely a hoppy backbone to it, the aroma, as nice as it is, is not terribly complex

T - whoa is this sour, im talking like tearjerker sour (remember tearjerkers, anyway), tart cherries of course dominate the taste as well, but there is a sour apple flavor as well, man this is sour, i hurts the teeth sour, whew

M&D - you really have to enjoy sour beers to enjoy this beer, i liked it, but im not into sour beers, though i will not hold that against the brewer, dry and medium bodied, oh and its sour, but nonetheless a well crafted brew, and pretty tasty too

sinstaineddemon, Feb 23, 2007
Photo of Phatz
4.93/5  rDev +15.7%
look: 4.5 | smell: 5 | taste: 5 | feel: 4.5 | overall: 5

I owe the greatest debt of gratitude to phnphilly for the opportunity to try this SPECTACULAR beer. Thank you for sharing this with me. You are a true friend. Thanks prAna for trading with him. Keep sending sour beer ;-) I hope he keeps sharing with me!!!

Appearance: Pours a gorgeous amber color with a creamy ivory head and notable lacing.

Smell: the massively intense aroma smacks you upside the face and demands you full attention. After a huge sour apple, tart berry and ripe fruit whiff comes more subtle and complex layers - acidic lactic - and also aromas of smooth scents of old wood, burnt caramel (light sweetness) and lemon juice.

Taste: I am flabbergasted!!! I never run out of words but I must just say, I LOVE THIS BEER! It is intensely sour!! Sour apples and vinous sour tart berry acidity and a very bold pucker inducing (hard swallow) finish that magnificently forces a wince and nearly draws tears to my eyes, meanwhile loving every moment of the treasure. This beer has the best aftertaste. It actually gets better and better long after the swallow. The flavors continue to grow and reveal more depth in the aftertaste. As the sour fades more sweetness come seeping out of the cheeks. Take my breath away! This is EXCEPTIONAL!

Mouthfeel: For an aggressively sour beer this one is quite creamy and smooth. It maybe light/medium but it works perfectly with the poking and prodding on the palate from the sour and the dry astringency.

Drinkability: It is a sipping beer but I could drink (sip) it day and night 24-7-365 (if I could acquire it). God, I love sour beer. And this is crème de la crème of my favorite style!!! WOW!

Hope this is helpful.
Cheers!

Phatz, Feb 20, 2007
Photo of timtheenchanta
4.9/5  rDev +15%
look: 4 | smell: 5 | taste: 5 | feel: 4.5 | overall: 5

Thanks to beerhandy for the chance to try this one.

Dark reddish brown brew topped by a light beige head with some thin spotty lacing.

Beautiful nose! It's slightly sweet like muscadine grapes straight from the vine (scuppernongs to us southerners) with a hint of oak and a friendly dose of sour apples. Eighteen months ago, trying this beer would have been a complete waste of my precious funds.

HUGE flavor on this one. This one hits the tongue in such sweet fashion compared to any other flanders red I've tried. Big sweet muscadine grapes flush the tongue with ecstacy after every sip. Hold that sip in your mouth for a second or two and the brett rushes your mouth with a sourness you could have missed if you weren't swishing it around in your mouth. Whoa that's some bite! There's a hint of apple and a sweetness from another fruit although I can't seem to wrap my tongue around it. This one also gets "hotter" as it warms up to room temperature but the spiciness doesn't seem to take away from the experience.

I always feel skeptical going into highly toted beers like this one but I feel this one lived up to the hype. It's so great but also so radically different from all the other flanders reds I've had. A great beer indeed! Thanks again go out to beerhandy for the chance to try this and mschae1017 for sharing the bottle with me. Oh to be able to live with this one at least once a month... alas, I'm glad I had the opportunity to try it.

timtheenchanta, Feb 19, 2007
Photo of MSchae1017
4.8/5  rDev +12.7%
look: 4 | smell: 4.5 | taste: 5 | feel: 4.5 | overall: 5

First of all, thanks to timtheenchanta for sharing this gem with me.

The New Belgium's La Folie Wood Aged Beer is presented in its corked 750mL bottle marked as "HAND BOTTLED # 06-3420" in hand writing indicating that this is the 2006 version. The beer escapes from bottle and into my snifter with a dark copper body nestled underneath the frothy off white head that hangs on with a ring around the edge of the glass and wisps of foam across the top leaving a slight bit of lace. The aroma hits you the sour and tartness from the bacterial fermentation, yet there is a lingering sweetness that promises an interesting flavor to come. The beer hits my tongue, causing my mouth to pucker from the wonderful sourness, yet the sweet undertones balance out the beer so nicely, that you cannot refuse another sip. The beer finished with a hint of wine and the wood aged flavor while letting the sour bacteria prevail. The body of the beer is right on with a medium feel and just enough dryness to no be overpowering. It has some nice bottle conditioning to round out the mouthfeel. Overall, this is the definitive Flemish style sour ale in my opinion. I have enjoyed the style before, but as my beer is almost finished, I am ready for the next glass. However, it must be said that this beer is not for those new to the sour ale style, but for the rest of us, drink up!

MSchae1017, Feb 19, 2007
Photo of TexIndy
4.68/5  rDev +9.9%
look: 4.5 | smell: 5 | taste: 5 | feel: 4 | overall: 4

2004 vintage (#04-2011). Got in a trade with TxHops. Poured from a 750ml caged and corked bottled. Did a gentle pour into my New Belgium snifter so not much head a ton of initial carb that slowly faded. It had a reddish copper color with a bit of alcohol haze in it. Looks like it has held up well over the years. The aroma was obviously heavy on the sour cherries with a bit of wine/champagne throw in there. The taste is really, really good. This is my first La Folie and since it's 2.5 yrs old I can't say how it compares to a fresh one but at this point it's a nice smooth drink. The cherries are just approaching being too dominant so not sure if that has increased or decreased over time. The mouthfeel is pretty good but considering the initial carb I thought there would be more of carb bite. Overall, the aroma and taste are amazing and highly recommend. I only give 4 on the drinkability because I'm still growing into the style and one glass is enough for me for now. Can't wait to try a fresh one and see how it compares. And of course get another new one to age for awhile. (4, RB, T, Y)

TexIndy, Feb 15, 2007
Photo of BlindPig
4.83/5  rDev +13.4%
look: 4.5 | smell: 4.5 | taste: 5 | feel: 4.5 | overall: 5

Bottle # 06-564

A- About a 1/4" light tan head in my flute. Kind of cloudy amber body with quite a lot of hues of copper. Lacing covers pretty much all of the top.
S- Big sour aroma. Tart and sour apples fill the nose. A good helping of hops can be found under all of it. Some smokey wood is under all of it. Alcohol also makes it way through.
T- This is good! Nice big sourness to it. Big tart apples. Big wood flavor. Big lingering bitterness mixed in with the sourness also. Nice complex flavors. Light alcohol warming in the back (very light but is there). Very well balanced and has a great complexion it.
M- Medium body with low carbonation.
D- I love this. I can't see a Flanders red ale getting any better than this. It has a great balance to it. Very sour and tart flavors. Wood comes through great too. Just love it.

BlindPig, Jan 31, 2007
Photo of beerbrains
4.4/5  rDev +3.3%
look: 4.5 | smell: 4.5 | taste: 4.5 | feel: 4.5 | overall: 4

Wow!! One of the most unique brews to ever pass my lips. Dark red color with a frothy head. First reaction is what the hell. Tart and sour. Shock-tarts sour. Citric acid not citrus flavors dominate. Half way through the glass the citric acid mellows and the sour fruit emerges along with nutmeg and vanilla. Finishes very dry. Actually a great beer even though I don't think I could drink more than one at a sitting.

My gfs reaction after taking a sip "I never want that in my mouth again"

beerbrains, Jan 17, 2007
Photo of oberon
4.53/5  rDev +6.3%
look: 4 | smell: 5 | taste: 4.5 | feel: 4 | overall: 4.5

Thanks to orfeu for picking this up for me while in Nebraska,first off normally I am not a big fan of the style but this, this is awesome.Poured a hazed brugundy spiked with tawny brown a well defined slight off white head atop leaving one ring around my oversized wine glass.Complex to the hilt in the nose so much stuff going on I almost dont know where to begin,tart sour cherry and vanilla I would say are most prominant then the subtle stuff shows thru sherry,phenolic clove,nutmeg,pepper its all there.Quite tart at first it takes a minute to take it in then I start to pick vanilla and a real peppery presence a touch phenolic spiciness finishing with a saltiness that sticks and really hits the back of the tongue whoo!Wow what can I say it seems like each sip gives off something new,as I stated before not a style I go for much but damn how can you not at the very least respect this bad boy,a real gem.

2006 bottle#2006-1139

oberon, Jan 10, 2007
Photo of Westsidethreat
4.75/5  rDev +11.5%
look: 4 | smell: 4.5 | taste: 5 | feel: 4 | overall: 5

Review #500. I figured this beer would be apt.

2006 Vintage #1156

A: Pours a hazy unfiltered paprika color with very fizzy carbonation. Head is almost all together gone, light beige and disapating rapidly. A healthy ring around the glass does remain though.

S: Pungent oak, cherry, raspberry, tomato vine, ascorbic acid and some cooked strawberry.

T: It begins tart, no surprise...but balanced. Its much like it smells. Cherry can be identified as well as strawberry and lemon juice. Very woody indeed. As it warms, berries and vanilla really begin to shine. Some minor spicyness of nutmeg and black pepper can be found far under the surface. Very juicy, explosive with flavor. Finishes sour, dry and fruity with just a hint of vanilla.

M: Medium body with a hard mouthfeel but fuzzy consistency.

D: This is close to the most sour beer I've had. Every sip I take makes me pucker. At first I really didn't think this was anything special, then it started to grow on me. Every sip is an experience. I have a feeling though gastronomically this one is gonna hurt me.

Westsidethreat, Dec 27, 2006
Photo of hckyfn9999
2.95/5  rDev -30.8%
look: 4.5 | smell: 4 | taste: 2.5 | feel: 3 | overall: 2.5

From the 2006 edition. Pours a deep mahogany color with a thick cream colored head with some nice lacing.

The aroma is intense of bitter cherries, along with some oak, pepper, must, and a little vanilla as well.

Taste is extremly tart. Taste is of very sour cherries, green apples, a little must, and oak. This brutally bitter. Not really my thing.

Mouthfeel is ok a little dry in the finish and pretty heavily carbonated.

Not drinkable at all due to the sourness in my opinion. I can handle sourness and bitterness, but in my opinion this is over the top. I won't buy this again anytime soon.

hckyfn9999, Dec 23, 2006
Photo of jazappi
4.5/5  rDev +5.6%
look: 4.5 | smell: 4.5 | taste: 4.5 | feel: 4.5 | overall: 4.5

Presentation: Bottle, poured into a tulip.

Appearance: A very amber/red color, head went away quickly and left behind very little lacing.

Aroma: Very sweet, almost like a champaign smell.

Taste: Very sweet. Tart. And almost sour aftertaste.

Mouthfeel: Smooth and crisp.

Overall: A very unique beer, I liked it a lot. Would be a good beer to have with a steak.

jazappi, Dec 19, 2006
Photo of Beaver13
4.2/5  rDev -1.4%
look: 3.5 | smell: 4 | taste: 4.5 | feel: 4 | overall: 4

750 ml bottle, caged and corked. Bottle # 05-4260, purchased 7/3/06. Pours a clear reddish amber with a thin off-white head that quickly diminishes to a wispy collar that has some legs.

The aroma is peppery wood, fruits, a tart acidic sourness and some sweet-tarts.

The flavor is a little sweet fruitiness quickly followed by a huge mouth-puckering sourness - kind of like the sour sweet-tarts. The mouthfeel is medium to full and low on carbonation, but what little there is is pretty sharp and zings the back of the throat.

Overall, a very nice sour ale! It's different and not for everyone, but is quickly addicting. It has much more in your face sourness than the Panil.

Beaver13, Dec 15, 2006
Photo of tjthresh
3.58/5  rDev -16%
look: 4 | smell: 4 | taste: 3.5 | feel: 3 | overall: 3.5

On tap at the Falling Rock as part of the GABF 06 festivities. Really cool looking reddish brown. Served with not head, or even indication of head. A lot going on in the nose. Tart cherry, brett funk, wood, nail polish remover. It about put me down when I took the first drink. Huge rush of tart sourness. Certainly not for the timid. Those that take the challenge with will be nicely surprised.

tjthresh, Dec 02, 2006
Photo of allengarvin
4.75/5  rDev +11.5%
look: 4.5 | smell: 5 | taste: 4.5 | feel: 5 | overall: 5

Thanks to Mark Wedge for this bottle. 2006 vintage, poured into a clean Duvel glass. Comes out with a deep ruby-brown color with a good initial head, though it fades. Aroma is truly beautiful, tart but not too sour-smelling, fruity, reminiscent of cherries, lightly woody and earthy. Very acidic at first, but after the sourness declines a bit there's a coppery-metallic fruity character that makes it very refreshing. Finish remains very tart, but by no means undrinkably acidic; a lingering oaky-vanilla taste becomes apparent after a moment. Well-carbonated with a light and effervescent texture.

What a fantastic effort! I think I prefer this to Rodenbach Grand Cru.

allengarvin, Nov 30, 2006
Photo of IntriqKen
4.33/5  rDev +1.6%
look: 4 | smell: 4 | taste: 4.5 | feel: 5 | overall: 4

Thanks to rsyberg01 for this trade.
A very pretty cloudy light amber in the glass is topped with a small white head that melts away to nothing.
Aroma is tart green apples, tart cherries, and light oak aging present.
Taste is very tart....again, tart cherries and green apple with oak barrel touches.
Needless to say this leaves the mouth very dry very quickly.
You have to have another sip or your tongue will turn to powder.
This is definitely the definitive Flanders.

IntriqKen, Nov 12, 2006
Photo of rsyberg01
4.55/5  rDev +6.8%
look: 4.5 | smell: 4.5 | taste: 4.5 | feel: 5 | overall: 4.5

S - Bottle # 05-2591. 2005 vint.

A - Pours a reddish orange with a head that fizzles out but sticks in the corners. Very soft and pretty.

S - Woody, oaky, soft undertone malt hints, nice fruit character that is soft. Apples and cherries, very ncie. earthy and musky as well.

T - Tart, apple and cherry, woody with some funk from the earthiness, slightly sweet in the back. Complex and delicious.

M - Smooth and crisp. Perfect.

D - The tartness may take a toll but overall its really quite nice.

rsyberg01, Nov 08, 2006
Photo of nortmand
4.83/5  rDev +13.4%
look: 4.5 | smell: 5 | taste: 5 | feel: 4.5 | overall: 4.5

Pours somewhat cloudy and red with a frothy pinkish head.

Old pickles dominate the smell. In your face sour smells, with an edge of vinegar. Horse barn, blanket, stall all that stuff is ever present. Amazing that this is made in Colorado.

Flavor is unapologetically sour all the way through. There is so much going on, sour lemon flavors, earthy tones, musky mushroomy things also. Some bitterness sneaks through at the end as well.

Light to medium body, so complex, so sour, so damned good.

nortmand, Nov 07, 2006
Photo of SacoDeToro
4.33/5  rDev +1.6%
look: 4 | smell: 4.5 | taste: 4.5 | feel: 4 | overall: 4

On tap at the New Belgium Brewery.

The beer had a light garnet hue and an off-white head that became a nice lace around the glass.

The aroma of the beer was of sour cherries, fusel alcohols, oak, and solvents. Very interesting indeed.

The flavor of the beer was rich with complexity. It tasted of sour fruit (mainly cherris), alcohol, some solvent, vanilla, and oak. Uniquely complex.

The carbonation was good and tight. The mouthfeel was medium-light and seemed appropriately attenuated for the style.

Probably the best Flanders red ale I've had. New Belgium certainly did there homework on this beer. It transcends any of their mainstay beers, most notably, the medeocre Fat Tire amber ale.

SacoDeToro, Oct 10, 2006
Photo of weeare138
4.7/5  rDev +10.3%
look: 4.5 | smell: 5 | taste: 4.5 | feel: 4.5 | overall: 5

'05 version...
Appears a hazy red toned amber with a small white head that fades out into a small cap.
Smell is oaky, earthy, with tart cherries, spree candy, perhaps a touch of papaya somwhere in there...heavenly.
Taste is of the same aromas with a spicy, wild bite that is outstanding. The oak is subdued enough that it brings out all of the tart, meaty characteristics that make this beer a winner. This is very much to the liking of Rodenbach Grand Cru, only better. There must be some magic on those Rodenbach barrels b/c everything that goes inside of them, comes out enticing my palate and making me want more and more.
Mouthfeel is spritzy, sugary, tart, balanced, and medium bodied.
Really nice. I'm sure this will be in my personal top 10 for a while.

weeare138, Oct 09, 2006
Photo of SkeeterHawk
4.43/5  rDev +4%
look: 4 | smell: 4.5 | taste: 4.5 | feel: 4 | overall: 4.5

We had this beer with a bunch of friends at a sour beer tasting. This one was definitely one that stood out among many.

The beer was a mostly clear reddish brown color with a 1/4" head of off white bubbles on top. The head stuck around for a minute or so, but didn't really leave any lace on the glass.

The aroma and flavor tells that it was truly sour with some noticeable wood that comes across as aged and somewhat dry. There is a sweet cherry and other fruit noticeable in the aroma to go with the sourness. The flavor is dry with a clean fruit flavor in the finish. Dryness is the whole theme with this beer. There is some caramel apparent deep within this beer, and as it warms up, there is a noticeable red wine or sherry becoming noticeable. It doesn't come across as being oxidized, but really complex.

I will try this beer again all by itself to get to know it better. I really enjoy the bold flavors and aromas that this beer has, and in my opinion it is probably one of the best beers to come from the US. I would certainly drink this one again.

SkeeterHawk, Oct 09, 2006
Photo of Oxymoron
4.65/5  rDev +9.2%
look: 4 | smell: 4.5 | taste: 5 | feel: 5 | overall: 4

How have I not rated this beer before? Pour is a cloudy amber red color with very little foam that quickly disappears. The aroma gives off sour almost vinegar qualities and leaves no doubt of the Flemish Red style. Some lighter notes of fruity cherry are noted really blend well with some feint oak smells.

The taste is a beer to savor. When served it was chilled and had a tart cherry, almost a hint of apple finish. Some lighter notes of oak and vanilla flavors come out. As the beer warms, more sour and vinegar-like taste become noticeable. The vanilla and oak flavors are enhanced and the vinegar tastes become for prominent. More of a our cherry then tart. There also is a sweetness with come candy-like flavors and a light bready tang.

The body is light but acceptable. This isn’t a easy beer to drink but one to savor. If you have a chance, enjoy every taste you get.

Oxymoron, Oct 05, 2006
Lips Of Faith - La Folie from New Belgium Brewing
95 out of 100 based on 3,069 ratings.