Lips Of Faith - La Folie - New Belgium Brewing

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Lips Of Faith - La FolieLips Of Faith - La Folie

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1,011 Reviews
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Reviews: 1,011
Hads: 3,628
rAvg: 4.21
pDev: 9.74%
Wants: 546
Gots: 843 | FT: 44
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:
Beer added by: BeerAdvocate on 09-22-2002

Flemish Sour Brown Ale fermented in stainless then transferred to barrels for 1-4 years of aging then blended to taste.
Beer: Reviews & Ratings
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Reviews: 1,011 | Hads: 3,628
Photo of DarkerTheBetter
4.37/5  rDev +3.8%
look: 4 | smell: 4.5 | taste: 4.5 | feel: 3.5 | overall: 4.5

This beer pours a dark cola color with a hint of orange. It's also a bit murky. The head was little more than a sparse film.

Smells of tart apples, pears and cherries with a sweet-tart candy sting atop a dry crisp caramel base. The pungent funk is not to wild or strange.

Tastes of a very slick and smooth cherry that explodes with carbonation delivering a dry sting and funky tartness. There are bits of bark and straw in the muskiness too with a sharp snap of young rhubarb. Mmmm.

A bit too frothy for my liking, but solid.

Wow. A tasty treat for sure and an excellent take on the style. (593 characters)

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

Ah, the fabled La Folie. For a regularly available beer, people want a lot in trade, it doesn't reach the various necks of the woods I hang out in... blah blah blah, whine whine whine.... there it is, on tap at Stone, when I'm not looking for it.

A full pint in the standard Stone tulip arrives at my table, a deep rich mahogany with virtually no head (and no real lacing to materialize), but a beautiful, radiant color.

Aroma is a bit thin, is it too cold? Hints of toast and malt sweetness, a bit of a saccharine nature to it, cherry and stone fruits. Tobacco, whiskey. As the pint progresses these all come out.

Starts out watery and thin. An empty faint sourness around an insubstantial bready malt middle, with hints of New Belgium biscuit malt and bourbon whiskey. Vanilla and oak. As it warms the body fills out a little, a nice medium body, and the flavors develop. Sweet tart sourness, the malt developing into a rich, fine, balance. It needs a touch more funk, but the last third of the glass is as fine a beer as I've ever experienced. A bottle served at cellar temperature moving towards room might do more justice.

Glad I had the time to sit and savor, as this was two totally different drinking experiences from start to finish. (1,247 characters)

Photo of HumuloneRed
4.49/5  rDev +6.7%
look: 4 | smell: 5 | taste: 4.5 | feel: 4.5 | overall: 4

2002 botte # 0219.
It pours a clear light red a very thin head and some lacing.

Strong sweet flower/sour cherry aroma with some woodsy notes in the nose.

Very acidic flavors with some woody slight ly chaulky notes in the flavor.

Of the La Folie bottlings I have tasted my favorite so far is the 2002. This should get even better with age. Thanks to my friend Doug for this one.! (382 characters)

Photo of DrDogbeer
3.73/5  rDev -11.4%
look: 4 | smell: 3.5 | taste: 4 | feel: 3.5 | overall: 3.5

Poured from the corked bottle into a chimay goblet. Impressive looking sour ale. Good brownish color with a thin white head. dissapates quickly. Smell is of sour candy (sour patch kids?) and sour apple cider. does not put me off, though, rather intriges me. Taste is more of the same. really sour apple cider taste. Some different burnt oakey flavors to finish, but not overwhelming. Very intersting beer. I am glad I shared it, not sure I could drink a whole bottle by myself. (477 characters)

Photo of JDV
4.52/5  rDev +7.4%
look: 4 | smell: 4.5 | taste: 4.5 | feel: 5 | overall: 4.5

This 2007 bottle from session1979. Thanks! Pours a cranberry to blood red color with a light beige medium lived head. Smell is nice and tart, with a semi sweet and woodsy cherry aroma and a smooth rounded character. Surprisingly devoid of a harsh vinegary aroma, which was very welcomed. Taste was intensely tart, and extremely drying oakiness, and dry unsweetened sour cherries. Nice and tart and unbalanced in a fantastic way. Sucks the moisture out of your mouth like a really dry tanniny wine. No harsh vinegary qualities to it in the flavor either, making for an awesomely drinkable sour. My new favorite of the style! (623 characters)

Photo of Avryle
4.37/5  rDev +3.8%
look: 4 | smell: 4.5 | taste: 4.5 | feel: 4.5 | overall: 4

"Night in the Woods" tasting 3.29.08
Thanks to bwyker for bringing this...

A- pours a hazy red brown with a minimal white head

S- Sour & oak. Oye! Some funk

T- Wow! this sucka's one sour ale! Sour cherries in the taste as well as vinagrette. Nice presence of the oak in there as well

M- Medium bodied with nice carbonation. Pucker up

D- how do you rank drinkability on sour beers? By the fact that you were able to consume it? Actually, I very much enjoyed this & think it would be great during the warmer months. It'd also make a phenomenal salad dressing. (562 characters)

Photo of aerozeppl
4.2/5  rDev -0.2%
look: 4.5 | smell: 4.5 | taste: 4 | feel: 4.5 | overall: 4

Thanks go out to bwyker for bringing this.

A: Cloudy red in color. Minimal white head.

S: Sour cherries. This beer smelled so insanely sour. The cherries were right there with it in strength though. Some funk and a earthy smell.

T:The most sour beer I have ever had. Once you have a few sips and your taste buds give up it becomes much more enjoyable. You pick up on the oak a little bit more as it warms as well. The cherries are there as well but the sour just keeps hammering away the entire time.

M: Med body but the carbonation was really good and helped the drinkability quite a bit.

D: I have come to realize that I am not a fan of sour beers. This beer was so sour it hurt my soul. That being said it is amazing they were able to pack so much flavor into a beer that is only 6%. Definitely glad I got to try it just don't expect me to seek it out again. Blends well with Firestone 10. (897 characters)

Photo of largadeer
4.35/5  rDev +3.3%
look: 4.5 | smell: 4.5 | taste: 4.5 | feel: 4 | overall: 4

Corked and caged bottle from 2007.

Appearance: Dark red, clear for the first glass and then murky for the rest of the bottle. The head is initially huge, but eventually settles into a thin cover.

Smell: The nose is evenly balanced between sweet and sour; quite a contrast to the taste. Caramel, cherries and vanilla are prevalent with undertones of more acidic fruit and a hint of musty wood.

Taste & mouthfeel: Raspberries, cherries, green apple, caramel and vanilla. Oak is present but mildly so. Moderate sourness and acidity that has a balsamic vinegar character. Very subtle sweetness gives this the perfect balance for my palate. Light-to-medium in body with a sticky, coating mouthfeel. This beer packs a ton of flavor into 6% ABV. Very good. (752 characters)

Photo of WeisGuy
4.35/5  rDev +3.3%
look: 4.5 | smell: 4.5 | taste: 4.5 | feel: 4 | overall: 4

Thanks to Jw347 for this bottle. Bottled 11/07.

a - pours a deep burgundy color, huge light tan bubbly head with good retention and lacing, pretty cloudy

s - big sour and tart cherry aroma with an ample amount of oak, a bit of funkiness

t - sweet and tart cherry flavors up front, midpalate is strong sourness with some vinegar and shots of oak and leather thrown in, sourness, light cherry flavors with a bunch of oak lingering on the finish

m - lots of carbonation, very active in the mouth, medium-bodied, fairly dry on the finish

d - the tartness and sourness definitely makes this a sipper, but I'm having no problem getting through this 750ml bottle

Great, interesting beer overall. Definitely one of the finest American-made sour ales. (748 characters)

Photo of t0rin0
4.49/5  rDev +6.7%
look: 3.5 | smell: 4.5 | taste: 4.5 | feel: 4 | overall: 5

Tried this tonight and was very impressed. I've heard about this beer and every time I see "New Belgium Brewing" next to the name I just keep right on browsing, figuring that it can't be any good. I was sorely mistaken.

This beer pours a deep red color that was sorta clear. Slightly hazy. There was some head in my glass but that was pretty much a vertical pour in an effort to aggravate the beer and produce some aromas. Not much retention.

The smell was wonderfully geuze-like. Moderately sour and definitely some oak in there. Also some sour cherries coming out. The smell is not as intensely complex as some of the reviews would make it out to be but it is very well balanced.

The taste is moderately sour and oak inspired. There is some fruit in the background and some sweet malt. Not much to comment on other than its a great flavor and that I could drink bottles of this on a daily basis.

Over the past 6 months or so I have really been introduced to sour belgian beers and this is a prime example. Medium body, enough CO2, very drinkable. (1,052 characters)

Photo of Floydster
4.72/5  rDev +12.1%
look: 4.5 | smell: 5 | taste: 5 | feel: 4.5 | overall: 4

750 ml bottle acquired in a trade with drseamus, thanks for giving me the opportunity to try this amazing beer, originally cost approximately eighteen dollars from the brewery

Split with my girlfriend tonight while watching Into the Wild, hand bottled number is 07-2978, has been in my cellar since November, poured into my New Belgium snifter

A-Medium to dark brown body with red highlights, 3/4 inch off white bubbly head, tons of carbonation in this one, bottle exploded all over the place when open, no retention, some lacing

S-Tartness, granny smith apples, citric acid, eathy aromas, funky accents, cherries, raspberries, strawberries, vinegar, lemon juice, wood, wine, extremely sour overall

T-Sourness does not waste any time, big tart right off the bat, does not fade much into its somewhat dry and chardonnay-like finish, very acidic and did not see malt until later on in the middle once it warmed a little, lots of fruit and balsamic vinegar notes later on, tons of lemons and cherries that provide somewhat of a burning sensation on your tongue, super sour all the way through, even my last few sips an hour or so later, could taste some oak at the end, flavor rivaled some of Russian River's wild ales, superb taste overall

M-Sweet and tarty mouthfeel, thin to medium body, huge amounts of carbonation which can be overwhelming at times, aftertaste stuck around for a couple minutes

D-Could have drank the bottle individually, low ABV, lacks great smoothness, also the high level of sourness causes it to be pretty heavy, alcohol is hidden well though

Hard to believe this amazing beer comes from the same people that make Fat Tire, even better than the Red Poppy I just drank, need to try this next time it is on tap at O'Briens or Liars Club, I let the last few ounces in my glass warm for well over an hour and the result was great, cannot wait to drink this again, highly recommended (1,908 characters)

Photo of hawksfan82
3.78/5  rDev -10.2%
look: 4.5 | smell: 4 | taste: 4 | feel: 3.5 | overall: 3

750 ml bottle corked and caged. Poured into a stubby chalice. I was told "wide mouth" was the way to serve this guy.

Pours much darker than I thought it would. Very deep brown with amber and ruby highlights. I was expecting some floating yeast and whatnot but there wasn't much. I did let it settle quite a bit before serving though. Fizzes to a good 2 finger head right away, but dissipates quickly into almost nothing.

The smells is extremely sour. A lot of apple evident in the nose, almost sour candy like. Very unique.

Wow. The sour hits you hard and fast. Takes a few sips to get past the mega sour taste that you get upfront with your first few drinks. It's the same sour apple taste you get in the smell, but it doesn't linger long and you get a very tart bite right afterwards. If you let it sit on your tongue for awhile, you can pick up a hint of a traditional farmhouse/saison character in the finish. There's a nice little pepper/grassy bite that finishes it off....with some warming alcohol here and there, which was unexpected at only 6% abv.

While this is a fun brew, it's really not the most drinkable. The tart/sour isn't bad, it's just a lot to deal with if you aren't used to it. It was a struggle to get through the whole bottle, but I really wanted to see if this guy would mellow out when it warmed up.

All in all a pretty good brew, but I could only have it as the occassional treat. (1,412 characters)

Photo of FtownThrowDown
3.74/5  rDev -11.2%
look: 3 | smell: 4 | taste: 4 | feel: 4 | overall: 3

Pours a ruby brown with no head. Smell is tart with some of the oak coming through. Taste is all sour. This is liquid Sweet Tarts. Not a whole lot more there. Just a smooth, not overly carbonated sour beer. Decent, rather one dimensional. I couldn't drink too much. The 750 was too much. There was too much acidity in the beer for my liking. (341 characters)

Photo of ChainGangGuy
4.33/5  rDev +2.9%
look: 4.5 | smell: 4 | taste: 4.5 | feel: 4 | overall: 4.5

(Bottle 07-6791).

Appearance: Pours a hazed brown body with a small, fizzy, off-white head.

Smell: Tart-smelling sour cherry aroma with notes of seasoned wood, earthy funk, and a neutral graininess.

Taste: Immediately sour and tart with a blackberry and cherry-like fruitiness. Slightly tannic oakiness and a bit of funk encountered. Fleeting flash of malts. Two drops of Worcestershire sauce. Bracing acidity. Finishes dry with a long-lived tart, fruit aftertaste.

Mouthfeel: Medium-thin body. Fine carbonation.

Drinkability: There hasn't been anything this tart yet still wonderfully balanced and easily drinkable in my mouth in a long, long, LONG time. A lovely beer. (675 characters)

Photo of Viggo
4.5/5  rDev +6.9%
look: 4.5 | smell: 4.5 | taste: 4.5 | feel: 4.5 | overall: 4.5

New Years tasting extravaganza with grub and biegaman, La Folie bottle #06-3445, opened by grub.

Pours a pretty clear red/brown, huge off white head forms, leaves behind some absolutely massive lacing, great retention, looks nice. Smell is nice, cherries, caramel, very acidic, vinegar, oak, vanilla, super intense fruity sourness. Taste is great, cherries and brown sugar, oak, very acidic, lemons, more fruits, very sour finish, puckering and its great. Mouthfeel is light to medium bodied with medium carbonation, very dry finish, very acidic. Lives up to the reputation for me, great sour beer. Thanks Russ! (613 characters)

Photo of Rezzin
4.38/5  rDev +4%
look: 4.5 | smell: 4 | taste: 4.5 | feel: 4.5 | overall: 4.5

Thanks to Oskaar for thinking of us during his trip to New Belgium Brewing.

Poured into a clean tulip. Colors range from brown, to reddish orange and it's crystal clear. Due to the non aggressive pour to keep the yeasties at bay (served 3 people), the head is somewhat thin but long lasting.

The aroma is wonderful. melons, acid tartness, vanilla, cherries, a little barnyard funk but not as much as I was anticipating. There is a little malt sweetness in the aroma.

Up front you get a blast of sour fruits, oak tannins, vanilla, with a little malt sweetness. Very little though. Balsamic vinegar notes with a wonderful grape skin smacking finish. Very geuze like. A little more sour than I expected but with all of the complex flavors, New Belgium seems to have done this right.

Highly effervescent with a wonderful acetic zest. Light to medium bodied. (id say more light than medium).

This is a highly drinkable flanders and I even went as far as to finish off the yeast dregs afterwards. I couldn't get enough of this stuff. This is an anytime beer in my book. Refreshing enough to quench your thirst in the summer and enough character keep up with all of winter warmers.

I'm very impressed with this beer. (1,218 characters)

Photo of Overlord
4.55/5  rDev +8.1%
look: 4 | smell: 4 | taste: 5 | feel: 4.5 | overall: 4.5

Thanks to artusory for the trade.

Pours an enticingly hazy amber-orange. Pretty muddied, though. Nice full two or three inch head, pretty long lasting.

The smell is either heavenly, or horrific, depending on your tastes. I do enjoy sour beers, so this was fantastic. The aroma is vinegar, citrus/lemon tartness, and a whiff of sour fruit.

The taste is pretty unapologetically broad. Razor sharp lemon citrus, definitely sour cherries and maybe tart raspberries, and a big heavy wood/oak taste.

Lively dry champagne-esque mouthfeel really sets it all off. I can't believe this was made by the same brewery that has Fat Tire as its flagship line. (650 characters)

Photo of russpowell
3.49/5  rDev -17.1%
look: 4 | smell: 5 | taste: 3 | feel: 3.5 | overall: 2.5

2007 vintage, bottle 3414 pours effervescent caramel/orange with 4+ fingers of fluffed up tan colored head. Head quickly drops off to 1/4" inch. Very good lacing & above average head retention

S: Much sourness & vinegar, appleskins & raspberry, plus a bit of leather

T: Much dryness, appleskins, tartness &sour cherry up front. Oaky notes, a bit of raspberry tartness, & granny smith apples as this warms. Finishes dry, acidic, with more sour cherry, apple skins & some acidic burn (too much)

MF: So much dryness, minimal carbonation, acidity is pretty prominent too.

Drinks so slow, this is just too much. The only reason I don't rate lower is this mostly sticking to style. Other versions of Flanders red aren't so extreme. I did find it a bit more user-friendly on tap, but I had a load of beer down my gut prior to tasting that sample. Sour beer freaks may love this, but I sure as hell couldn't session on this. Too harsh for the style IMO. Would go great with cheese, I wonder how aging would affect this? At $18 bottle, I may never know (1,049 characters)

Photo of pfknapp
4.22/5  rDev +0.2%
look: 4 | smell: 4.5 | taste: 4.5 | feel: 4 | overall: 3.5

Received this beer in a trade with jhammerly

The beer pours orange/red amber. It really is a beautiful color, but a bit hazy. Has a huge head initially which fades very quickly.

Aroma is beautiful. Sour, but not too sour. A bit of acetic acid in the aroma, but mostly a general sourness, not weighed too heavily towards lactic or acetic. It has nice hints of read fruit, particularly raspberries and cherries. Some malt sweetness and possibly some tropical esters.

The taste is really nice. Not as fruity as the aroma, but still quite prominent. Assertive sourness, but it does not detract. It is well balanced between sweet and sour. I almost detect some hop flavor, but that could be my palate fooling me. This is really good.

It has a lively carbonation. I imagine without the carbonation this beer would be rather creamy. The carbonation livens it up nicely.

The drinkability suffers somewhat due to the sourness. It is just a shade too sour for me to drink much of this. But I am prone to heartburn, so don;t let that scare you. This is a beautiful, well balanced beer. (1,080 characters)

Photo of emerge077
4.68/5  rDev +11.2%
look: 5 | smell: 4.5 | taste: 4.5 | feel: 5 | overall: 5

This is my 3rd time sampling La Folie, and this particular bottle was from the 2006 release, numbered 06-3463. Served at cellar temp: 55º-60º.

Perfect crimson red, with racing carbonation. A small blanketing of foam develops after the pour, and settles to a patchy skim. Evaporating carbonation is audible, like Rice Krispies. A white ring of foam is ever present, and some irregular lacing decorates the glass.

Aromas of musty leather, dark underripe berries, black cherry, residual pasture funk, at a lower level than a Gueuze or Lambic. Complex without being overbearing, truly a signature aroma of a traditional Flanders Red.

Tart flavor, with a nice residual cherry and oak bouquet. Dry finish, oak tannins, with plenty of fruit lingering. Residual saltiness that is pretty unique for this style, yet compliments the sweet/sour well. Not ham-fistedly sour, as some Gueuzes can be at first sip. Delicate and complex, the most perfect Flanders style ale i've come across. Quenching in it's tartness, this is the epitome of my attraction to sour ales.

2008 tap sample: Very tart, it may put off novices to the style. There was a distinct grape jelly aftertaste that I never noticed before, and a hint of multigrain breadiness. The body seemed less substantial than from from the bottle, as if it lost steam after 15 minutes. (1,334 characters)

Photo of freethehopspc
5/5  rDev +18.8%
look: 5 | smell: 5 | taste: 5 | feel: 5 | overall: 5

I first tried this beer during the 2007 GABF week at the brewery. I thought it was great then, it's even better away from the brewery.

It poured/smelt/and tasted amazing. I have been on a sour kick recenty and have tried every one I could get my hands on, and nothing touches this one.

If sour ales are you kind of beer, this is a must. (340 characters)

Photo of stimy
4.02/5  rDev -4.5%
look: 4 | smell: 4.5 | taste: 4.5 | feel: 4 | overall: 2.5

I drank this at a "The Belgian Beer Diaspora" beer tasting hosted by the late Michael Jackson at the National Geographic. The tasting involved pairing a number of Belgian beer styles with a Belgian and American interpretation of the style.

These are my tasting notes:

This was my 2nd sour beer and it was in the same night as my first. I was struck by the totally different and unbelievably sour taste of this beer and had a hard time drinking it. It had an incredibly sour smell and taste, but a hint of sweetness came in as you drank and get used to the sourness in a beer.

This is something I'd like to try again now that my palate has expanded. (651 characters)

Photo of Mudpuppet
4.24/5  rDev +0.7%
look: 3 | smell: 4 | taste: 4.5 | feel: 4 | overall: 4.5

A- Poured from a 750ml bottle into a Riedel snifter. Pours reddish brown with no head.

S- Cherries and oak in the front. Not an overly strong nose.

T- This is a pretty good example of a Flanders Red. Definite oak from the aging with the sour cherries. Good level of sour flavor for this beer.

M- Med to low carbonation. Could be a bit higher to cut through the sourness.

D- I love this style of beer. Good sour character and fruit in this beer. (448 characters)

Photo of SPLITGRIN
3.19/5  rDev -24.2%
look: 4 | smell: 5 | taste: 2.5 | feel: 2.5 | overall: 2.5

Original review done on July 3rd to celebrate the 4th a day early.

A two finger rich tan head quickly crackles to the top of the glass. Big rocky bubbles pop with nice sound effects. Body is a deep brown with hints of orange amber on the sides of the glass. Nose is very invigorating with lowd spiceyness, and hints of sweet fizz candy, and old fashioned cream soda. This nose is so unique and amazing. As I take first sip I wasnt ready for the electric sour rush that attacks the tongue. I mean the sour is so shrill that it makes me squint with each drink. Like if the coating on an atomic sour ball came in liquid form. This is just to much for me. The total sour feel ruins my buds to taste much else, and hurts the drinkability. (735 characters)

Photo of tpd975
4.5/5  rDev +6.9%
look: 4.5 | smell: 4.5 | taste: 4.5 | feel: 4.5 | overall: 4.5

This one comes from franksnbeans

A: Beautiful amber hue with a thin head that clings on for dear life. It's very bubbly but the head dies down and there is no lacing noted.

S: Lots of cherry with hints of oak. Fresh wet black cherries. The sourness seems to burst from the glass.

T: A great balance of oak and cherry. Sourness dominantes the palate, But sweet yet tart cherries and oak make themselves known in such a wonderful way. There is a touch of white pepper that adds just enough spice to balance out the tartness of the cherries.

M and D: Wonderfully balanced. The marriage of sour and sweet fruit and married to oak creates one wonderful beer. It's easy to drink and oh so enjoyable.

Overall: My favorite Red Ale to date. It's just a bonus that it happens to be brewed in the US. Tons of fruit and tart, funk and sweetness. Perfectly crafted, perfectly brewed. It's the standard that other breweres should use as a bench mark.

I love it! (955 characters)

Lips Of Faith - La Folie from New Belgium Brewing
94 out of 100 based on 1,011 ratings.