Lips Of Faith - Transatlantique Kriek - New Belgium Brewing

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Lips Of Faith - Transatlantique KriekLips Of Faith - Transatlantique Kriek

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218 Reviews
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Reviews: 218
Hads: 742
rAvg: 3.44
pDev: 16.28%
Wants: 45
Gots: 87 | FT: 5
Brewed by:
New Belgium Brewing visit their website
Colorado, United States

Style | ABV
Lambic - Fruit |  8.00% ABV

Availability: Rotating

Notes & Commercial Description:
Beer added by: Oxymoron on 07-09-2009

In a never-ending quest to create new beers and defy category, New Belgium Brewing and Brewerij Boon of Belgium have partnered together again to create Transatlantique Kriek - a spontaneously fermented lambic ale made with Polish cherries.

This authentic kriek beer began life in the oaken vessels at Frank Boon's brewery in the Lembeek region of Belgium. After more than two years aging, Boon's offering shipped across the Atlantic and found its way to the intuitive palate of New Belgium's Brewmaster Peter Bouckaert. After much sampling and internal consultation, Peter and his brew staff created a full-bodied golden lager to round out the light-bodied kriek.

The cherry nose gives way to a pleasingly sour flash across the palate that rolls gently into a slightly sweet finish. Crisp, effervescent carbonation keeps the mouthfeel bright and delightfully tingly.
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Reviews: 218 | Hads: 742
Photo of callmescraps
3.28/5  rDev -4.7%
look: 4 | smell: 3.5 | taste: 3 | feel: 3 | overall: 3.5

Had at the Goat. I find NB hit or miss, but I do like krieks.

Appearance- A lovely deep ruby color. Quite red. Nice pink head. Very pretty.

Smell- Lots of fruit. Sweet cherries and a touch of tart cranberry.

Taste- Ugh. Just a watered down kriek. There is some nice fruit, and a good hint of funkiness. I like the tartness, and cranberry comes through. But it's just too watery. It's like a Cap Cod where all the ice has melted. Just a shame.

Mouthfeel- Too creamy. The lager is not doing it favors. I want a lighter, more carbonated feel.

Drinkability- Goes down very easy. But that's sort of the problem.

This should be a good beer. It's got a really nice kriek in there somewhere but the mix isn't doing it any favors. They ruined a perfectly good beer by getting too creative. Disappointing. (803 characters)

Photo of billab914
3.33/5  rDev -3.2%
look: 3.5 | smell: 3 | taste: 3.5 | feel: 3 | overall: 3.5

Poured from a 22oz bottle into my Southern Tier tulip glass. Pours a bright ruby red color, almost like cranberry juice. It started off with a thin pink head that left some moderate lacing on the glass.

The aroma is mostly tart cherry juice. It has a little sweetness to the nose as well but not much else. The taste has a moderate cherry tartness but isn't very sour. The cherry juice flavor really dominates more then anything else.

Mouthfeel is on the lighter side and carbonation is above average, but perhaps lower then it should be for the style. Drinkability is average for the style. It had some nice cherry flavors but tasted more like a cherry juice then a lambic beer. (681 characters)

Photo of twiggamortis420
3.84/5  rDev +11.6%
look: 3.5 | smell: 4.5 | taste: 3.5 | feel: 3.5 | overall: 4

22 oz bomber with no freshness date pours a reddish amber hue with a fluffy cap of pink foam. Yes, thats right...bright pink. Head falls pretty quick and leaves some spotty lacing here and there.

Nose has a nice, tart cherry aroma. Some sweet, light grains are detectable but the cherries really carry the majority of the load. Smells delicious, but not an abundance of sour notes here.

Why mix what seems to be a perfectly good kriek with a regular 'ol lager? Totally dilutes the tart and sour aspects of a lambic, you can tell what was in place before the lager addition as some mild acidic and sour notes are there. That said, it is still plenty enjoyable and is by far the most chuggable lambic ever created. The cherry flavors taste really good and natural. Slight medicinal sting at the end, but does not detract from the beer in any way for me. Grainy malts are expectedly prevalent and lend some sweetness to the beer. Mouthfeel is great and glides down the throat with ease and the 8% ABV is nowhere in sight. I enjoyed drinking this beer and will not have any problem finishing this whole bomber by myself, but going into this thinking authentic Belgian Kriek - one is bound to be disappointed. (1,206 characters)

Photo of portia99
2.85/5  rDev -17.2%
look: 3.5 | smell: 3.5 | taste: 2.5 | feel: 3 | overall: 2.5

22oz bottle received in trade with knucks999. Thanks. Poured into a Duvel tulip.

A - Pours a bright red, almost cranberry juice like in appearance with a quickly fading and fizzy half finger of soda-like pink foam on top. Good clarity, no lacing left on the glass.

S - Fruity, sour cherries, a tiny bit of funkiness in it, smells a bit like some kind of artificial sweetener, a small indication of some sourness overall. Smells a bit cranberryish too.

T - Taste closely follows the aroma. Funny fruitiness in there...not really getting cherries, I'm still thinking cranberries, but with the same weird artificial sweetener character. Not like a traditional kriek and not like the sweetened Lindemans kriek either. Somewhere in the middle...seems like it can't decide what it is, and doesn't do it very well either.

M - Light to medium body with medium carbonation too. Strangely sweet and just a bit strange overall...drying, sorta lick your lips to get the flavor off sensation. Just a little odd, like everything else about this beer.

D - Hmm, not really enjoying this beer very much...and I really wanted to also. Should've listened to knucks999 - warned me it was a bit off, but I had to try anyway. Just strange...tastes more like homemade red wine that was made with a bad kit and not totally fermented out before bottling. I'm usually a fan of the New Belgium Lips of Faith series beer, but this one totally misses the mark for me. (1,443 characters)

Photo of SShelly
3.46/5  rDev +0.6%
look: 4 | smell: 3 | taste: 3.5 | feel: 4 | overall: 3.5

Pours reddish amber, crystal clear, slight offwhite head.

Aroma is tart cherries and slight sweetness. Touch of more potent sour as it warms.

Light tart upfront with sweet cherry tang, kind of a weak finish, just a light tart, leaves the mouth a little dry.

Drinkable, not spectacular... (290 characters)

Photo of Mora2000
3.65/5  rDev +6.1%
look: 4 | smell: 4 | taste: 3.5 | feel: 3.5 | overall: 3.5

Pours a medium dark red color with a white head. It is very clear. The aroma is tart cherries with some light funk. The flavor is tart cherries with some vanilla and oak. There is something at the end of the flavor that is a little off but it doesn't take away too much. This tastes a lot like a dry red wine. Low carbonation and thin-medium mouthfeel. (352 characters)

Photo of WYVYRN527
3.55/5  rDev +3.2%
look: 4 | smell: 4 | taste: 3.5 | feel: 3.5 | overall: 3

Poured into the RR glass that I use for all beers of this style.

A: Pours a deep red with a thin pink head that settles rather quckly. Carbonation is goos, as well as lacing, but head retention is rather weak.

S: Lots of cherry on the nose, with some must and earth. Brett gives the aroma some funk, but less than I would have expected.

T: Sour cherry, lemon, and barnyard are most prominent, with some sweet malt notes. Hops are nearly undetectable, except for the slightly bitter finish the beer gives.

M: Medium bodied. This beer has almost too much cherry flavor, along with the alc, making it a bit cloying.

D: This is a good beer, but it is not exactly a good example of the style. There is still something that tastes artificial about it to me. However, it is a stepping stone to other beers. (805 characters)

Photo of Chambic
2.71/5  rDev -21.2%
look: 4 | smell: 3 | taste: 2.5 | feel: 2.5 | overall: 2.5

02.07.10 at Toronado

A: so promising, with its pretty, clear ruby color

S: fruit-forward, mostly cherries, of course, and can sense a touch of sour

T: whoa, am I drinking carbonated grenadine?

M: fully syrup-like, but with a drier-than-expected finish

D: I could, but I probably won't

What am I going to do with the 750mL I have at home? I was expecting so much more from this, especially since I'm not in love with their Kriek, either. How long can I age something with that much fruit in it? Would that even help? (521 characters)

Photo of Gueuzedude
3.46/5  rDev +0.6%
look: 4.5 | smell: 3.5 | taste: 3.5 | feel: 3.5 | overall: 3

Sampled September 2009
A solid pour into my 25cl tulip glass produces a three finger thick, pink tinged, off-white colored head that leaves quite a bit of lacing on the sides of my glass as it slowly subsides. The beer is dark red color that shows a brilliantly clear, light cranberry hue when held up to the light. Quite a bit of grassy grain aromatics greet me as I first smell this beer, underneath this is a washed out vinegar note and perhaps a touch of cherry character. The nose is not at all what I was expecting, or even what I was not expecting; it is neither super cherry like, nor is it particularly funky or sour, instead it is fairly muted overall. A hint of acetone is noticeable as well as a hint of hot alcohol; this last is more noticeable as the beer warms up.

The beer is quite a bit drier than I thought it would be. There is a light tartness to this beer as well as a touch of a cherry backbone. A touch of spicy, lightly warming alcohol and a touch of acetone add a touch of sharpness to the finish. There is a definite buttery note here, it isn't too big, but definitely comes off as a flaw of diacetyl; this note is actually pretty subtle and I am somewhat sensitive to it. Perhaps a bit more light bodied than I might like, though it is certainly quaffable (if you can get past the flavor) and not quite watery. There is a hint of grassy grain here (though not as much as was in the nose), as well as a bit of caramelized malt complexity.

My memory may be a bit weak, but I think this is actually weaker than the original, lower alcohol release. I was at least expecting a bright cherry note here, but that isn't here and neither is a pronounced funkiness or sourness. Somehow this beer has been a disappointment from what I was even expecting; it is just too bland overall. Still this is not a horrible beer, just not exactly what I was hoping for. (1,877 characters)

Photo of mactrail
3.85/5  rDev +11.9%
look: 4 | smell: 4 | taste: 3.5 | feel: 4.5 | overall: 4

If the Transatlantique Kriek of a couple years ago wasn't so outstanding, this one might be better received. Gaudy color like a Mexican soft drink does make it hard to take so seriously.

Very sprightly, fizzy, without much head. Tart but not sour. I don't taste much malt, or Belgian oddities. Flavor recedes as you sip. It has its charms but I am not so eager for another bottle. Claims 8% abv but it really does not seem that strong to me. I always look for New Belgium offerings but I hope they go back to the more strongly-flavored version of the kriek. (558 characters)

Photo of sleepydave
3.26/5  rDev -5.2%
look: 4 | smell: 3 | taste: 3 | feel: 3 | overall: 4

Thanks to Abuliarose and Sisuspeed for sharing this one with me!

Poured into a White Birch Tulip reveals an oddly cherry 7up like beverage. A beautiful garnet color, crystal clear save for the mass of bubbles floating up. The head dissipates instantly into a tiny ring of white suds. Not a whole lot to comment on here, looks like a kriek blended with seven up. Pinkish and highly carbed albeit without much head.

Oh wow, this would be a great starter kriek for someone. Almost hard to tell this is beer, it smells like cherry 7up too! A slight cranberry zing makes up the tartness though. That's nearly it. Almost no alcohol on the nose.

The base pale ale that the kriek was mixed with is barely perceivable in the taste and nonexistent in the nose. I'd say the kriek overpowered the pale, but it strikes me as more soda like than kriek. Definitely would recommend this as a starter for someone who isn't into a full five card pucker face. (Wow, I hate myself for that phrasing but I am going to keep it haha)

As drinkable as what I am convinced it has in it, cherry 7up. Great date beer I could see though. Mouthfeel and carbonation are again just like cherry 7up to me. It looks great, but it lacks complexity of any nature and for the style I see that as a rather glaring omission. But it is well done in it's simplicity. I get barely a hint of 8% alcohol, the carbonation seems to just carry it down the hatch. Very well masked.

Glad I got to try it but unless I get tired of watching my friends wince at the sourness of most of what I serve, I won't be looking to pick it up. Possibly for someone who doesn't like beery beers or sour sours though. (1,659 characters)

Photo of sisuspeed
3.23/5  rDev -6.1%
look: 4 | smell: 3.5 | taste: 3 | feel: 3.5 | overall: 3

Poured into a tulip glass, the body is a clear, red, slightly grape juice like color with a frothy pink head. Is this beer? Looks like juice or wine with a nice head.

The smell is sweet and sour with vinegar notes. Fruits, mostly cherries and grapes, with just a touch of alcohol.

Tipping back the glass reveals a rush of sweet, tart cherries and cranberries. Some vinegar taste and again, a touch of alcohol. The tartness is nice, but not overwhelming. Unfortunately, the flavor seems like cherry cough syrup at times. Some grapefruit notes come through as well. Overall, the flavor is fairly one-dimensional, but not too bad.

The mouthfeel is smooth and creamy with delicate carbonation. Tartness from the cherries may make your mouth pucker a little.

Drinkability is about average. A little on the sweet side and at times the flavor is too reminiscent of cherry cough syrup. However, sometimes when I take a sip, the beer comes across as juicy and refreshing. I guess I have mixed feelings on this one.

Overall, this is my first New Belgium brew and consequently my first from the Lips of Faith series. I feel like this beer has potential, but isn't one that I would visit again unless they revamp the recipe or lower the $15 sticker price. (1,248 characters)

Photo of kbutler1
3.35/5  rDev -2.6%
look: 3.5 | smell: 3.5 | taste: 3 | feel: 4 | overall: 3.5

Pours a cranberry red with a tight pink head. This beer really defies a style. Lambic mixed with a lager. The lager really cuts the tartness of the cherries. Instead of finishing tart, like you would expect, it finishes smooth. Taste of cherry is at the forefront. It doesn't finish as tart as I would like but it's pretty good. very dirnkable if you are in the mood for something different.
All in all a decent beer. (418 characters)

Photo of MisterClean
3.65/5  rDev +6.1%
look: 4 | smell: 4 | taste: 3.5 | feel: 3.5 | overall: 3.5

Thanks to Matt at poker night.

A - Cherry red, 2 fingers of white head, dissipates slow. Very nice lacing.

S - Brett and sour cherries.

T - Sour cherries, brett, bittering hops and some yeast funk.

M - Moderate bodied, malt dominated, and bitter in the mouthfeel as well.

D - Good, but slightly less bitter would be more drinkable. (336 characters)

Photo of SpeedwayJim
2.96/5  rDev -14%
look: 4.5 | smell: 3.5 | taste: 3 | feel: 2.5 | overall: 2

Picked this up in NC after the Sexual Chocolate release. Poured from a 22oz. bottle into an Ithaca tulip.

A: Standard pour yields a 1.5 finger head coarse pink head with moderate retention. Beer is a gorgeous crystal clear dark red satin. Lacing is spotty but hangs out for longer than expected.

S: Moderatly boozy nose which is unexpected. Ripe black cherry tartness along with an unmistakable oakiness. Sugar at points also.

T: Opens watery, slightly tart with a cherry sweetness. No flavor really shines here as everything is very muddled. Finishes strongly boozy and this assaults my throat as I fight to get it down. Very acidic with a weird hop character in the middle that appears very out of place.

M: Medium bodied, coarse and extremely watered down. Perhaps this was in the barrels too long... perhaps not long enough, perhaps it was the ocean air. Whatever it is, it didn't work. Finish is slightly dry, which is weird since the rest of it is so watery.

D: Not one of New Belgiums winner, I feel like this beer has a serious identity crisis. It thinks it's a lambic but everything screams fruit beer or cheap wine. Body is too watery and it takes away a lot from the already light flavor. A stunning beer to look at though... (1,245 characters)

Photo of jujubeast6000
3.36/5  rDev -2.3%
look: 4 | smell: 3 | taste: 3.5 | feel: 3 | overall: 3.5

Reviewed 1/5/2010 (Lips of Faith bottle):

Pours a light ruby red color body with a smallish pink foamy head, diminishing. Clear. Sour aroma, strong. Some fruitiness, cherries. But almost a fake cherry smell, like extract. Strong sours, earthy, farmy. Reminiscent of a red wine. Mouth watering smell. Dry fizzy taste, somewhat dry aftertaste. Light cherries, fruit. Almost non-existent. Nutty aftertaste. Very good taste, extremely drinkable. Somewhat puckering. Clean tasting. Almost like a sour fizzy candy, less fizzy, but still that sharpness. (547 characters)

Photo of olympuszymurgus
2.54/5  rDev -26.2%
look: 3 | smell: 4 | taste: 2 | feel: 2 | overall: 2

I was excited to see a new sour on the whiteboard at The Eastside(Oly beer mecca) last evening. After first getting a pour off the secret tap I saddled up to the bar and asked for a pour of this red goddess. It's looks like a fake Irish woman's head, red and red with no hint of realism. It rakes your nostrils with a little tart, a little cherry, a little funk, a little happiness. The smell excited me more than that fake redhead two tables down.

And then, the taste. The sour is minimal, the cherries more pronounced, the flavor flat. 2 dimensions, pedestrian, a dry Lindemans. The sparks on my tongue comes more from carbonation that sour, it's a fizzy soda with a hint of disappointment. A Kriek version of Fat Tire, the safe way to brew. (745 characters)

Photo of scruffwhor
3.37/5  rDev -2%
look: 3 | smell: 3.5 | taste: 3.5 | feel: 3.5 | overall: 3

Pours a Kool-Aid like cherry skin, yet clear red woth some visible carbonation and a super quick, flash-in-the-pan head. The aroma is candy cream cherries with maybe a touch of barnyard mingling around. Interesting, but a little too candy-sweet for a lambic in my view. The taste has a tart strawberries and cherries and crem taste right upfont. The middle takes a more general tart fruit flavor with some earthy lambic yeasty goodness. The finish is ripe fruit and must. The palate feels more carbonated than it looks. Fruity and tart, but lacking complexity and sophistiction. Not worth the $15 a 22oz bottle I spent. (619 characters)

Photo of wedgie9
3.9/5  rDev +13.4%
look: 5 | smell: 2.5 | taste: 4.5 | feel: 4 | overall: 4

Tasted from a Lips of Faith labeled 1 pint 6 fl oz bottle purchased in late 2009.

Aroma - Straightforward and easy, this smells like the cherry aroma I get from cherry-based brandies, and there is also a sour aroma.

Appearance - Very light amber, almost pink color with "sparkling" liquid, very similar to Champagne bubbles rising. The head is creamy yet minimal with a pink tint.

Taste - The sour flavor is prevalent from beginning to end, but still very balanced. On the back of the palate, the real cherry flavor comes through very nicely.

Palate - The carbonation is very fizzy, the beer is medium in body with an oily texture. The sour flavor sticks to the side of my tongue forever.

This is a really fun beer that I can gladly recommend to anyone. (758 characters)

Photo of LibraryTom
4.15/5  rDev +20.6%
look: 4 | smell: 4 | taste: 4.5 | feel: 3.5 | overall: 4

This ruby red lambic is a blend of two. The nose is all cherry, with a good dose of the sourness being revealed. Cherry follows in to the taste, and dominates the palette. It is delightfully sour with a complex herbal bitterness that helps round out the beer. Although it is 8%, this one is refreshing with a lasting, slightly bitter finish. (341 characters)

Photo of hoegaardenhero
4/5  rDev +16.3%
look: 4 | smell: 4 | taste: 4 | feel: 4 | overall: 4

a: minor ring of white head on a beautiful clear rose/pomegranate body; lots of movement in the glass;

s: cherry is first; warmer malty ale notes on the finish; tart wild yeasts; strawberry rhubarb; even light blue cheese; oak and vanilla a little bit as well

t: very mild; cherry again prevalent; with a backbone of the malty ale notes; followed by the sour apple tartness of the yeasts; the beer really warms with each sip as the tongue becomes used to the taste of the sourness, the more subtle sweeter cherry and malt flavors come through; hint of brown sugar

m: light to medium body; aggressive mouthfeel; light cloy

d: i think that this is a great take on the style; has the tartness of a traditional kriek but it is rounded out by some of the sweet mellowness of the malts; i would have it again and i thoroughly enjoyed it; and my girlfriend liked it and she rarely likes beer (889 characters)

Photo of nickfl
4.3/5  rDev +25%
look: 4 | smell: 4 | taste: 4.5 | feel: 4 | overall: 4.5

A - Pours with a small, not quite one finger, head of white foam with a tinge of pink. The body is a deep, reddish brown with good clarity. The foam settles quickly and leaves only minor lace.

S - A nice aroma of dry, earthy cherries with some pilsner malt sweetness. A little bit of spicy, sour funk in the background with notes of pepper and lactic tartness.

T - Light tartness up front with sour pie cherries and a bit of bready malt. The cherries resolve further around a light herbal hop note in the middle, and while this creates a bit of cough syrup character it isn't as offensive as it sounds and it makes the cherries taste more rich and pie-like. Finishes a bit more tart with moderate malt thickness, light funk, and lots of cherry character.

M - Somewhat thick, syrupy body, moderately high carbonation, and a slightly dry finish.

D - This is a nice drinkable beer with definite lambic/ real fruit character that could serve as a great introduction to the style for a novice. The lambic character isn't as intense as a traditional Kriek, but the fruit is very nice, despite a minor note of cough syrup in the middle. I am not sure why this hasn't been reviewed better than it has been, but I certainly enjoyed it. It was a bit on the expensive side for a beer that was only 55% lambic, but I picked it up at a store that marks its beer up too much IMO, so it may be more reasonable elsewhere. Overall, it is a very drinkable beer that retains a lot of the depth of its base; it is almost a sessionable lambic. (1,526 characters)

Photo of womencantsail
2.84/5  rDev -17.4%
look: 4 | smell: 2.5 | taste: 2.5 | feel: 4 | overall: 3

A: The pour is a clear, pale red color with a pink head which dissipates rather quickly.

S: The aroma is sweet cherries, almost maraschino like, or perhaps grenadine.

T: The taste is much the same as the nose. The flavor is somewhat reminiscent of the New Glarus Wisconsin Belgian Red (in terms of the sweetness). The problem is, this is supposed to be a kriek. Again, that fake, sweet cherry flavor is the primary component.

M: The mouthfeel is one of the better features of the beer (the other bering appearance). Medium in body with a fairly high level of carbonation.

D: Probably the worst of the Lips of Faith beers. In theory, this should be great, but it just comes out as a sugar bomb with hardly any features of the actual lambic. (743 characters)

Photo of JohnGalt1
3.28/5  rDev -4.7%
look: 3.5 | smell: 3 | taste: 3.5 | feel: 3.5 | overall: 3

new LoF 22 picked up at the COOP tried this side by side with an original '03 12 oz of the first batch!! Reviewed from notes.

pale pink head... strawberry soda color... the brew is a pinkish amber.

Nose is lightly funky.. mildly lactic with only a little cherry.

More cherry than the aroma with very very dry finish that has a sorta artificial cherry note to it.

Lite body and fairly abundant carbonation.



'03 batch.. best by May 19th, 2004

Color is more amber... pale tan head.

Nose is like a cherry cough drop... like Kasteel Rouge...

Flavor has a ton of cherry in it.. sweet cherries.... dusty balsa wood... whaffs of funk... finish is lingering cherry... good carbonation and body... simply amazed this held up this well.

3.5/4/4/3.5/3.5 (772 characters)

Photo of abstractpablo
3.29/5  rDev -4.4%
look: 4.5 | smell: 3 | taste: 3.5 | feel: 4 | overall: 2.5

The beer has a light pink effervescent head that quickly dissipates after pouring. The color of the beer itself is a pinkish amber.

Surprisingly, the cherries combined with the ale hint of merlot. The Kriek hits smooth and finishes with a sour cherry at the tip of the tongue. There's a pleasant smoothness that accentuates the beer's mouthfeel.

Overall, it's not a beer that I'd return to frequently. It's not explicitly a lambic, and this sort of in-between state makes it unappealing. Nevertheless, it's still an interesting beer that's fun for something different. (571 characters)

Lips Of Faith - Transatlantique Kriek from New Belgium Brewing
79 out of 100 based on 218 ratings.