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Sour Wench Blackberry Ale - Ballast Point Brewing Company

Sour Wench Blackberry Ale
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58 Ratings
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(send 'em beer!)
Ratings: 58
Reviews: 31
rAvg: 3.45
pDev: 13.91%

Brewed by:
Ballast Point Brewing Company visit their website
California, United States

Style | ABV
Fruit / Vegetable Beer |  5.40% ABV

Availability: Rotating

Notes/Commercial Description:
No notes at this time.

(Beer added by: Gueuzedude on 08-05-2007)
Beer: Ratings & Reviews
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Ratings: 58 | Reviews: 31 | Show All Ratings:
Photo of cbutova


3.98/5  rDev +15.4%
look: 3.75 | smell: 3.5 | taste: 4.25 | feel: 3.75 | overall: 4

Sampled and reviewed from notes taken during SDBW last week.

A- Semi murky pink body with a small creamy off white head. Decent head retention and the foam falls to a nice ring. Moderate spotty lace leaves the glass speckled with patches.

S- Something funky almost like hay and barnyard but not quite the same. Juicy berries fill out the rest of the nose with a fresh character.

T- Changes quite a bit here, somehow tastes like a black raspberry milkshake with great juicy berry hints and a nice tartness. Some lactic lemony tarts and fruity/berries all the way.

MF- Foamy and creamy texture to a light dried out body. Tartness at a low to medium level but does enough to add a huge compliment to the flavor.

Juicy and tart berry blast, somehow like a milkshake to me.

Serving type: on-tap

11-15-2013 22:50:12 | More by cbutova
Photo of xnicknj


3.13/5  rDev -9.3%
look: 3.25 | smell: 3 | taste: 3.25 | feel: 3 | overall: 3

on tap at bainbridge barrel house - served in taster

Pours a clouded purpley pink color with some darker hues. Thin head dissipates almost immediately leaving little lacing or retention.

Fruity tart nose with hints of blackberry and soft acidity. Touches of funky yeast and oak with red wine. A little understated.

Mild sourness with blackberries and dark fruit. Oak, red wine, red grapes and light funky brett. A bit watery and thin throughout, with occasional tart blackberry notes. Finishes a bit sour and dry.

Lighter medium body, decent carbonation, thin and short-lived on the tongue. Blackberry wild ale sounds promising, right? Unfortunately, this one is average at best.

Serving type: on-tap

01-22-2013 13:48:12 | More by xnicknj
Photo of FosterJM


3.03/5  rDev -12.2%
look: 3.5 | smell: 3 | taste: 3 | feel: 3 | overall: 3

1447th Review on BA
Draft to Taster

@Bruery Provisions for Experimental Sour Flight

App- A mismash of colors in the glass with purples dominating with a bit of pink and red highlights. A nice one finger head that left a little trace of bubbles on the top.

Smell- It was very similar to a artifical Lindemans, with a pungent blackberry note. I told callmecoon it reminded me of Boons farms from when I was younger. Just didnt feel like beer.

Taste- It was sweet, but not tart nor sour. A bit thick on blackberry but expected and didnt really give off a good craft well made flavor but more of a sugary drink taste. It was okay.

Mouth- A thicker body kinda syrupy with a thicker carbonation and a residual blackberry. About average for what the flavors brought to the the table.

Drink- Just okay, I was expecting a lot more out of this. Good thing it was a small pour.

Serving type: on-tap

08-15-2012 17:26:18 | More by FosterJM
Photo of UCLABrewN84


3.65/5  rDev +5.8%
look: 3.5 | smell: 4 | taste: 3.5 | feel: 4 | overall: 3.5

On tap at the ColLAboration beer fest at the Belasco Theater in Los Angeles, CA.

Pours a clear red cranberry juice color with a foamy reddish-white head that settles to a film on top of the beer. Thin streaks of lace form on the glass on the drink down. Smell is all about some tart and sour berry aromas. Taste is of sour berry flavors up front with some malt/grain flavors on the finish. There is a slight butter flavor that comes out as the beer warms. This beer has a good level of carbonation with a crisp and clean mouthfeel. Overall, this is a pretty good beer but nothing too exciting.

Serving type: on-tap

02-27-2012 04:46:21 | More by UCLABrewN84
Photo of phichifiji00


4.03/5  rDev +16.8%
look: 4.5 | smell: 4 | taste: 4 | feel: 4 | overall: 4

2011 vintage poured into sniffer glass.

Appearance: bright red, pours 2 fingers of thick pink head that quickly fades. Lots of lacing.

Smell: blackberries, subtle funk, red wine vinegar, sour cherries.

Taste: moderately sour, blackberries, red fruit, tart, barnyard funk, red wine vinegar, grape juice.

Mouthfeel: medium bodied, light carbonation, dry finish, tart.

Overall: not as sour as past years, but good taste. Very drinkable. Somewhat unbalanced. The extra dry finish seems out of place and brings this otherwise great beer down.

Serving type: on-tap

10-26-2011 20:53:09 | More by phichifiji00
Photo of CenCalMario


3.65/5  rDev +5.8%
look: 4.5 | smell: 4 | taste: 3.5 | feel: 3.5 | overall: 3.5

On top at Blue Palms.

Appearance is quite nice, nice carb, nice head retention- more than expected. Smell is light acidic, sour blend with Blueberries. Taste nice, low to med sourness, tart. Mouthfeel is good, not heavy or overly light. Refreshing. Overall a nice beer, would have another. Easy sour beer for transitional sour drinkers.

Serving type: on-tap

10-26-2011 00:43:12 | More by CenCalMario
Photo of Beerandraiderfan


2.15/5  rDev -37.7%
look: 3 | smell: 2 | taste: 2 | feel: 2 | overall: 2.5

Conflux of pink and purple, muddled, not really pretty, thin to no head. Aroma was funky, like feet, not good, even if some like funk, this was just sweaty gym sock.

Lacked either sour or blackberry characteristic, the wheat stood out, which was unfortunate. Very minorly tart. Fruit difficult to appreciate, as the bitterness blurs some things for me. Mouthfeel makes me think it was aged in cardboard. Thin at times.

Just not my thing, can't really get a good blackberry sour for some reason. Tasted at Stone's Sour Fest.

Serving type: on-tap

10-11-2011 23:55:31 | More by Beerandraiderfan
Photo of ShogoKawada

Rhode Island

3.38/5  rDev -2%
look: 3.5 | smell: 4 | taste: 3 | feel: 3.5 | overall: 3.5

on-tap into tasting glass. reviewed from notes.

A- Pinky purply spritzy liquid, head settles out in a blink of the eye. Good color on this one, though.

S- Aroma is to die for, I loove berries in beer, and I love the smell coming off of this one. Blackberry preserves. A bit sweet and maybe artificial, but I still dig it. C'est la vie.

T- A bit of a let-down. Not saying the blackberry isn't here, but it takes a big step back. A mild berry sweetness and moderately cutting tartness. The whole thing lacks a punch, though.

M- Watery, a bit light, would have liked to see this carry a bit more heft in body and flavor.

O- I liked it... I think with some tweaks it could be a lot better though. Needs more everything.

Serving type: on-tap

10-07-2011 13:36:23 | More by ShogoKawada
Photo of augustgarage


3.88/5  rDev +12.5%
look: 3.5 | smell: 4 | taste: 4 | feel: 3 | overall: 4

On-tap at Blue Palms Brewhouse - served in a snifter.

Opaque deep carmine liquid with an active pink head that recedes to nothing. No lacing.

Dark berry aromatics with suggestions of wine barrel, blackberry syrup, and perhaps mild hops.

Tart, sweet, wild, fruity; while the nose seemed faintly artificial, the full flavor of the plant, extending down to the roots is represented. Vague toast probably from malt. Medium finish is not quite dry.

Slick with low carbonation; not quite medium-bodied.

A unique flavorful fruit beer with an incidental sourness (that is by no means its defining aspect).

Serving type: on-tap

08-25-2011 02:57:21 | More by augustgarage
Photo of DeanMoriarty


4.47/5  rDev +29.6%
look: 4 | smell: 4.5 | taste: 4.5 | feel: 4.5 | overall: 4.5

Walked in the door of Ballast Point this afternoon with my wife and jokingly said, "hey look baby, it's your beer!" seeing the name "Sour Wench". She got a kick out of it and we ordered a couple tasters (much to our liking) and decided on a 1/2 gallon of it to bring back to the pad.

From the tap to growler. Here's what was printed on their chalkboard - Sour Wench Blackberry Ale: ABV 6.0%, SG/IG = 1060/1015, IBU = 20

Poured from a growler into a Geuze Boon Lembeek glass for myself and a Lindeman's Framboise glass for the wifey.

A: Pours a real pretty cherry/candy apple red hue with a good head that dissipates quickly leaving very little lacing in its tracks.

S: I grow blackberries in my garden here in OB and am very familiar with the smell and characteristics of blackberries, and the smell is on point with what I pull out of the yard on a regular basis - pungent and fruity earthiness that is recognizably tart and acidic, balanced by aromas of fresh baked sour dough bread.

T: Right on point with the nose, but the berries are even more prevalent - really like chewing on actual blackberries; as sweet as they are they tend to be overpowered by their tartness. The finish is bready like fresh baked biscuits. Extremely well balanced and perfect coastal summertime drinker - love this one (as does the old lady).

M/D: Light bodied and right where it seems as though it may thin out, the carbonation comes through to give this one some depth and just enough body to give it some character as well.

The drinkability is ridiculously friendly, and the wife and my only gripe is that we only filled one growler with this stuff. Wish'd we had grabbed two - next time for sure!

Serving type: growler

08-20-2011 03:31:28 | More by DeanMoriarty
Photo of ehammond1

2.83/5  rDev -18%
look: 4 | smell: 4 | taste: 2.5 | feel: 2 | overall: 2.5

On Tap

Blue Palms 3rd Anniversary Party
Blue Palms BrewHouse
Los Angeles, CA

Clear red, pomegranate, and slightly purple--a very strange, unique color. Interesting to say the least.

Powerful aroma of blackberries and some tartness, along with a musty, funky, (somewhat) off-putting, wet wood funk. Again, interesting.

Sweet blackberries and cardboard without a huge amount of tart sourness, though there's definitely some musty funk. The flavors don't come together cohesively at all.

Thin to medium mouthfeel without enough carbonation.

An interesting and unique beer, but not something I have any desire to try again.

Serving type: on-tap

08-16-2011 22:12:59 | More by ehammond1
Photo of ChanChan


3.73/5  rDev +8.1%
look: 5 | smell: 3.5 | taste: 3.5 | feel: 4 | overall: 4

Had this at the library ale house in Santa Monica Califas

Apperanace: ruby red in color with a one finger white head.

Aroma: Blue berry, raspberry as well as a sour note. The smell is faint in this beer.

Mouthfeel: Medium bodied with tons of carbonation very refreshing!

Taste: Tart, lemony, this is what I imagine would be the taste of pink lemonade with beer mixed into it.

Overall: This is a fun beer to drink the color makes you forget you are drinking a beer. It would go great on a hot summer day. I Would definitely buy some more if it was available in bottles.

Serving type: on-tap

08-16-2011 18:01:58 | More by ChanChan
Photo of HopHead84


4.18/5  rDev +21.2%
look: 4.5 | smell: 4 | taste: 4 | feel: 4.5 | overall: 4.5


On tap at Home Brew Mart. A traditional German Berliner Weiss made with Marion Berries.

A: An enticing mixture of red and purple, with a frothy pink head. Good clarity and a very nice color.

S: Marion Berry and vanilla with a little wheat and grain, as well as a decided tartness. Lactic notes are pervasive and the berry influence is pronounced. The beer smells lightly sweet, but it's much drier than previous batches.

T: Lightly tart up front with a burst of Marion Berry. Faintly sweet, though not sugary like the previous batches, with some light grain and bread. Upper low to lower moderate clean lactic sourness throughout. Finishes tart and fruity, with lingering Marion Berry.

M: Lower medium body with upper moderate carbonation. Mouthfeel is dry, sticky, and crisp.

Overall: A damn enjoyable fruit Berliner Weiss style beer. The increased sourness on this batch makes for a much more enjoyable and complex beer than the previous batches, which were more akin to a watered down sugary fruit beer. Refreshing stuff. After I drained my taster I was left longing for a pint. Try this new batch if you get a chance.

Serving type: on-tap

07-21-2011 04:16:07 | More by HopHead84
Photo of callmescraps


3.43/5  rDev -0.6%
look: 4 | smell: 3.5 | taste: 3.5 | feel: 3.5 | overall: 3

Saw this on tap at the Goat. Giving it a bid. I do love blackberries.

Appearance- Deep ruby, with an almost purple tint. A pinkish/purple 1/4 inch of head. It's nice looking.

Smell- Raspberry bubble gum. Very sweet and artificial smelling. Kind of good, kind of gross.

Taste- Raspberry bubble gum again. But followed by a somewhat unpleasant nuttiness. A weird tingle on the tongue. The finish is lousy. Nutty and weird. Hard to describe. (Obviously, sorry, I'm booting this one). It needs some more tartness. It's like a sweetened brown ale.

Mouthfeel- Would love some nice tingling carbonation.

Drinkability- Would be fine if I never had to deal with the aftertaste.

Pass. I had high hopes. This failed.

Serving type: on-tap

07-24-2010 17:30:35 | More by callmescraps
Photo of womencantsail


3.23/5  rDev -6.4%
look: 4.5 | smell: 3.5 | taste: 3 | feel: 3.5 | overall: 3

On-tap at Stone Sour Fest

A: The pour is a dark crimson looking color with a huge pink tinted head that just won't go away.

S: The nose offers up some blackberry, tannic fruit skins, some mild notes of grass, and a bit of oak.

T: The flavor is somewhat blunt. Certainly astringent and somewhat bitter, almost, with lots of fruit skin and seed flavor. A bit of blackberry and lemon juice tartness.

M: The body is light to medium with a somewhat soft, but plentiful, carbonation.

D: Of the sour Ballast Point beers, this is my least favorite. The fruit flavor is not really there and overall, it's somewhat abrasive and harsh.

Serving type: on-tap

07-22-2010 06:04:53 | More by womencantsail
Photo of oglmcdgl


3.53/5  rDev +2.3%
look: 4 | smell: 3 | taste: 3.5 | feel: 3.5 | overall: 4

On tap at hulmeville inn. Great spot to be sure.

A- come to me with a cm or so of pinkish head atop a deep pink purple brew.

S- kinda of subdued tart berries and sweetness.

T- tart out of the gates with the blackberries. Rolls into the very mild and unimpressive wheat or malt profile. Tart and semi sweet that's where I'm at. Lemon juice and grape juice.

M- mid to lite in body with a higher carb.

D- refreshing to say the least and not that bad a brew. One of the better fruit beer offerings I've had. Not the best by any means. Super easy to enjoy and drink.

Serving type: on-tap

07-03-2010 01:56:43 | More by oglmcdgl
Photo of pastradul


4.33/5  rDev +25.5%
look: 4.5 | smell: 4.5 | taste: 4 | feel: 4 | overall: 5

poured into allagash chalice.

nice hazy pink/purple with a great head on it.

The smell is tart dry fruit (blackberry). with a good tart hit on the nose.

The mouthfeel is nice and creamy. not as creamy as say a framboise but very smooth.

The taste is sweet upfront with a nice tart hit in the middle than a good dry sweet finish in the back.

Very drinkable. I would like the tart/sour turned up a notch on this brew and it would be mind blowing!

Serving type: on-tap

06-24-2010 04:52:14 | More by pastradul
Photo of Kegatron


3.08/5  rDev -10.7%
look: 3.5 | smell: 3 | taste: 3 | feel: 3.5 | overall: 3

On tap @ O'Briens (San Diego, CA) on 3/18/10. Served in a Chimay glass.

Pours a hazy dark ruby, with a thin covering of pinkish-white foamy head. This stays pretty rich looking around the edges of the glass, leaving some sticky swathes of lace back. The aroma smells of berries, sugary malts, and a pronounced sharp grassy dankness. Sadly, nothing really sour to report here.

The taste is berry juice and sweet sugars. Some earthy and gritty hop character fills out the back of the profile. Just a touch of sourness (probably more like tartness) but much like the aroma, it isn't enough of a trait to name a beer after. Leftover earth and tang hang over into the finish. The mouthfeel is medium bodied overall, with a crispness to it that lightly prickles the mouth. Some slippery slickness underneath gives this easiness across the palate, at least giving the feel a little something to write home about.

Wow, this was a disappointment from Ballast Point for me, and just not because of the totally unearned name. The flavors just aren't that rich, or exciting for that matter, as my thoughts quickly moved back over to the draft board after being barely done with a 1/2 of the glass.

Serving type: on-tap

03-26-2010 16:57:05 | More by Kegatron
Photo of bulletrain76


2.48/5  rDev -28.1%
look: 3 | smell: 2.5 | taste: 2.5 | feel: 3 | overall: 2

Draught at the brewery. Red color with a light pink head. Rotting fruit and berry aroma. Sour berries and sour grain with a dry, very grassy finish. Light bodied with high carbonation. Grass was really the dominant note here, with some sour old fruit. Not that great.

Serving type: on-tap

12-23-2009 06:55:09 | More by bulletrain76
Photo of nickd717


3.35/5  rDev -2.9%
look: 3.5 | smell: 3.5 | taste: 3.5 | feel: 3 | overall: 3

Tried this on tap. Next to Victory at Sea and Sculpin, this was really not all that impressive.

A - Bright red in color with a small pinkish head.

S - Aroma is blackberries and raspberries, a little like a fruit candy, sweet and only mildly sour,

T - Flavor is not too exciting, a little funky with blackberries and other berries, red grapes, sugar, and a little tartness.

M - Body is medium-light and palate is not bad, but rather boring for what is supposed to be a sour beer.

D - Average. It is fairly light, but the flavor gets a bit unpleasant after awhile.

Serving type: on-tap

10-06-2009 22:25:01 | More by nickd717
Photo of ArrogantB


3.38/5  rDev -2%
look: 4 | smell: 3 | taste: 3.5 | feel: 4 | overall: 3

On tap at Hamilton's and served in some sort of half chalice type glass. The smell was interesting and combined with the flavor you could detect a bit of black berry but there was also a bit of tartness and graininess. Very easy to drink but I don;t think I would order another one in the future.

Serving type: on-tap

09-22-2009 01:35:28 | More by ArrogantB
Photo of Halcyondays


3.13/5  rDev -9.3%
look: 3.5 | smell: 3.5 | taste: 3 | feel: 2 | overall: 3.5

On-tap at Beachwood BBQ,

A: Pours red-purple with a soft off-white head with notes of pink. Good lace, bit of a soapy fizzy look.

S: Blackberries, sourdough bread.

T: Really just a straight up fruit beer. Okay blackberry flavour, somewhat artificial, very light acidity, if tasted blind I would have thought it to be a Sam Adams probably.

M: Extremely light acidity, for a beer called Sour Wench I expect something sour. Soapy, thin mouthfeel. A let down.

D: This is doable as a stand alone fruit beer, but I don't plan on ordering it again. Not a chore to drink at least.

Serving type: on-tap

08-31-2009 20:38:35 | More by Halcyondays
Photo of LilBeerDoctor

New York

2.8/5  rDev -18.8%
look: 3 | smell: 2 | taste: 3 | feel: 3 | overall: 3

On draft. Wow, this was a frightening beer. Pours a clear red/brown with a small white head. Aroma of old cheese, rancid yogurt, and sweaty socks. Nasty. Flavor of sweet blackberry initially with the yogurt/cheese/sweat finish. Basically it tasted like blackberry yogurt, which I wasn't really a fan of. A little better flavor than aroma, but still...Yuck.

Serving type: on-tap

07-11-2009 18:23:03 | More by LilBeerDoctor
Photo of magictrokini


3.43/5  rDev -0.6%
look: 3 | smell: 3.5 | taste: 3.5 | feel: 3 | overall: 3.5

Looks like bubbly cranberry juice with a big, rock pink head. Sweet rasberry nose. Refreshingly sour taste. Lots of rasberry more than blackberry flavors with a sweet malt back. Approaches the taste of a rasberry cobbler, but without the sugar. At least it made it fun to try something differrent.

Serving type: on-tap

12-04-2008 23:59:25 | More by magictrokini
Photo of Overlord


3.25/5  rDev -5.8%
look: 3.5 | smell: 3 | taste: 3.5 | feel: 3 | overall: 3

I thought this had some sort of berry in it, but I couldn't pinpoint the flavor.

Pours a deep redish brown. Thin white foam. Berry/cherry tartness, with strangely muted flavors, and some sour apple backing. Almost no aroma.

Thin and somewhat flat.

Serving type: on-tap

07-22-2008 00:20:17 | More by Overlord
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Sour Wench Blackberry Ale from Ballast Point Brewing Company
79 out of 100 based on 58 ratings.