Cassissona - Birrificio Italiano
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Ratings: 54 | Reviews: 41 | Display Reviews Only:
4.53/5 rDev +24.5%
Rarely does a beer look "exceptional" to me, but if one gives points for drama, this must set a new standard. Giant arcing concave dunes of perma-foam pile on top of papery hazel liquid. Thick aromas of mashed pale malt energize steamy, pulpy impressions of exotic floral, fruit and spice fragrance. Yeasty moist vanilla pods. Mashed raw nuts. The texture is precisely articulated with chunky herb tannins and figgy acidity. The flavors are fruity more than woody or nutty. Heaping, super ripe paste of nectarine, plum, star fruit and baked pear. A brilliant duel of sweet lemon acidity and ropy tannin on the finish buttons down the promiscuous fruit and cream flavor.
08-23-2005 19:57:09 | More by putnam
4.35/5 rDev +19.5%
The beer poured into the chalice clear orange golden with a HUGE off-white frothy head which filled the glass with more foam and head than beer and took forever to fall back but coated the glass as it fell.
The aroma was strongy fruity with cassis and a nice earthy component and a light spicy pepper character. The aroma almost had a grape presence as in fresh grape juice. There was also a nice candy aroma.
The flavor was fruity with a nice peppery spice flavor and a slight grape and stronger black currant flavor. The flavor was slightly metallic and definitely earthy with almost a farmhouse character that would remind one of a fruited saison.
The finish was dry with a lasitng fruit, pepper and earthy character into the aftertaste. The body was medium but seemed lighter due to off the chart carbonation levels. As the beer sat after being 1/2 consumed it still foamed out the top of the bottle. A nice fruit beer melded within a saison framework.
750 ml bottle. Purchased at Sam's in Durham. Bottled on February 14, 2005 so this beer was almost a year old.
02-05-2006 23:04:47 | More by GCBrewingCo
4.33/5 rDev +19%
What a lovely beer this was, and what a pleasure to find it on tap at Grand Cru in Baltimore. I've only ever seen this beer in bottle, the last time at the Portland International Beer festival. All the more reason why I was so pleased/surprised to see it here on tap.
The beer pours a warm, hazzy brown, amber color, with very good head retention and decent lacing. On the nose you really get the cassis aroma, but it's not overdone or overly sweet. There is also some sweet malt, but it's dominated by the cassis. On the palate this beer is delightful. There is sweet cherry, melon and apple flavors, and the beer reminds me of a somewhat sweeter version of Samuel Adams Lager, but with the added cassis flavor. The beer is on the sweet side, but is not overdone and is not the least bit cloying. The beer is not the least bit heavy and is absolutely perfect for summer quaffing. This beer is quite drinkable and finishes very nicely, even a bit crisply.
What a fine beer. Kudos to Grand Cru for carrying this excellent beer.
06-28-2007 14:26:49 | More by John_M
4.25/5 rDev +16.8%
Presentation: 750ml greenish-brown glass champagne-style semi-custom bottle, pink on purple stripe label
Appearance: clouded light copper with ENORMOUS and VERY long living off-white head (I think, the biggest head I ever saw), a lot of lacing
Smell: very strong fruitness, some spiciness, minor black currant (cassis)
Taste: medium body, crisp and light mouth feel, very complex taste, malt, grapes, black cherry, spices, vanilla, again minor black currant
Notes: personally I wish more black currant taste in it, but still very crisp and refreshing
09-26-2005 02:25:32 | More by BeerBeing
4.2/5 rDev +15.4%
From notes. Bottle opened with an incredible pop, but no gush as I expected to follow. It poured very heady. Almost no liquid under a billowing fluffy head. It took a damn long time to pour the whole bottle. When the head finally subsided, the color was golden peach. The head eventually fell to just coat the brew. The nose was very crisp and tart, as expected with black currants. I got some slight musty funkyness and a hint of spice, but the currant was most prevalent. Flavor was less crisp than the aroma. The currant flavor was moderate. No real sweetness was there. I got a slight mustyness as well. Enjoyable brew. The feel was moderate with a very healthy bubble. Overall, an interesting brew. I would have liked a bit more currant flavor to match the aroma. Very charasmatic beer.
09-18-2005 03:35:18 | More by kmpitz2
4.15/5 rDev +14%
Appearance: Pours a hazy peach color with a massive head that is very hard to handle but leaves lacing all over the champagne flute
Smell: Dominant aroma of currants, but complemented by toffee, vanilla and cashew
Taste: Starts with a toffee/peach flavor that is joined, mid-palate, by a blast of currants; after the swallow, the complex currant flavors dominate and provide a tart-sweet element that is long-lasting; there is an unusual yeasty flavor on the finish that adds complexity
Mouthfeel: Light body with overwhelming carbonation; tingly on the tongue from start to finish
Drinkability: An experience that I really enjoyed, once I was able to deal with the carbonation; this is a complex beer that really pushes the boundaries
05-21-2007 23:39:51 | More by brentk56
4.15/5 rDev +14%
Bottled December 31, 2004, Sampled October 2005
Explosively carbonated, I barely get an inch and a half of beer into my Duvel Tulip, the rest of the glass is foam. The beer is a lightly hazy copper color, with a light tan creamy Meringue like head. The aroma is dry and fruity with notes of Riesling, and spicy notes like Sauvignon Blanc. I also get notes of raisins, hints of vanilla, a light acidic note. The aroma is really nice and fruity, I really have not done it justice to just how good it is, it really is like a fruity dry white wine.
The taste is pretty dry, yet it still has a fruity sweetness especially towards the middle and end. The fruit character is again reminiscent of a fruity white wine. The beer though is quite light on the palate, and of course entirely spritzy as it rolls across the tongue. There is a light acidity here, separate from the biting carbonic acid note in the finish, that helps to accent the fruit notes as well. I get notes of grape, peach, pear, a bit of ginger, and some definite honey notes. There are some beery notes here as well, it is not all fruit; the grain is definitely noticeable, especially in the finish with a light clean malt note.
I really like this beer, it is so light and refreshing yet still quite flavorful, really a good mix between sparkling wine and beer.
10-02-2005 05:42:03 | More by Gueuzedude
4.13/5 rDev +13.5%
We always talk about offering quality brews for our BMC buddies to transition with. Well, this is the ideal beer for our wine drinking buddies to transition with. Smells of heavy fruits, tartness, red wine, and champaign qualities. Looks straw to golden with a slight haze (probably from light wheat additions). White fizzy carbonation sparkles like soda water. Tastes malty and grape-like sweet. Follows with mild and appreciated tartness. No souring or astringency. Grapes and berry flavors with mild and sweet hops and spices. Complex and varying on the toung. Medium body with effvorescent carbonation adds playfulness on the palate. Finishes mildly sweet and dry. Mild heat from alcohol. Aftertaste is mildly sweet and tart. Good for a fruit beer--especially for you lambic fans.
09-25-2005 17:46:31 | More by BEERchitect
4.13/5 rDev +13.5%
This one pours a golden color with an extremely tall head that doesn't fall fast and leaves lots of lacing on the glass. The aroma is a little sharp with lots of fruity currant character. Smells good. The flavor is much the same - very fruity (currant), sweet, and has a bit of a tart bite on the end. The body was moderate and the drinkability was good.
09-19-2005 11:53:57 | More by clvand0
4.1/5 rDev +12.6%
sampled on tap at coles may 10/08. thanks to biegaman for splitting his goblet with me after he got the last one!
pours hazy reddish orange with a small dense white head. the head drops fairly fast and leaves no lace.
aroma is good. light cider vinegar. lemon. light fresh cassis. touch of sweetness. horse blanket and leather. crackers. just a hint of alcohol.
taste is good. light cassis sweetness. a touch of vinegar and sourness again, but much more restrained than in the aroma. light horse blanket and leather. white bread. crackers. bit of alcohol. very light citrus, maybe orange peel, but it doesn't really jump out at you.
mouthfeel is good. medium carbonation level. light body with a fairly dry finish.
drinkability is good. the light sweet currants balance and offset the funk and sourness quite well. i really enjoyed the interplay between the two. very nice and enjoyable.
05-11-2008 18:53:47 | More by grub
4/5 rDev +9.9%
Had this on tap at the Brick Store Pub. Italian beers certainly are getting interesting. Given that there is not a huge beer tradition there, I think they have not been hindered by style and have felt free to experiment with all kinds of ingredients. This cassis beer is one of the better ones that I have. Lighter and more refreshing than many others. Poured a hazy orange with a white fluffy head and great lacing. The smell is almost all black currant with its winey sweet/sour aromas. The taste is fruity, but the cassis is more restrained here. There is a note of it, but more as an accent. Instead you get berries, some lemon, and a touch of apricot in the main body. Smooth and spritzy and quite refreshing, and thankfully for the style, not overly sweet. Quite refreshing and a nice summer aperitif.
08-03-2007 05:19:46 | More by Georgiabeer
3.98/5 rDev +9.3%
Pours a hazy peach-orange body beneath a massive head of pillowy foam. The head eventually dies down and exhibits good retention and lacing. The nose is bright with ripe, juicy, and lightly tart currants, as well as some berries, spice, and mustiness. In the mouth it's medium-light bodied and airy with a very fine-bubbled, natural carbonation. It's gently effervescent and tingly-smooth. The flavor is more fruit pulp-like than fruit juicy, but the currant is clearly expresses and some of the mustiness found in the aroma is also present and helps to give it depth. Delicate. Very little bitterness, as expected. It finishes fairly short and dry considering it's a fruit beer, with just a touch of residual fruit left in the mouth. Quite nice.
11-25-2006 12:51:25 | More by NeroFiddled
3.95/5 rDev +8.5%
Blackcurrant beer...this one is in a big 75 cl bottle. The bottle opens with a loud 'pop', and copious foam builds on the initial pour. The beer is at once subtle in fruitiness, and also pronounced in character. There's a little tartness in the aroma, but a little more yeast, herbal hops, vanilla, and a little earthy 'farminess'. It's a nice combination, actually, and makes this cloudy, peach-colored beer very intriguing. The beer isn't overpowering, so it should be matched with appropriately light food. It's also got a delicate, champagne like texture, which is quite refreshing. The flavor is best described as semi-sweet, with a notable malt presence but also distinct hop balance. This one is surely a keeper.
11-30-2008 13:08:42 | More by Suds
3.88/5 rDev +6.6%
Appearance: Pours golden orange into a goblet, which was somewhat startling after the very dark bottle. Two-finger off-white head, probably due to an overly enthusiastic pour. (Actually, my second pour was much more careful and I still got a lot of head; it's just a live one.) Head lingers for a moderate amount of time. No lacing.
Smell: The fruit notes are obvious and, yes, you can smell the currants. Sour notes come through and suggest this is going to be a little different from your average fruit beer.
Taste: It's definitely sweet and fruity, but not overpowering. Some tartness keeps it from being too sweet, and I think that's the key to this beer's enjoyability. After I read the label I expected for this to be lambic-like, but it's actually much more balanced in an unexpected way. This is a total surprise to me, and is quite nice.
Mouthfeel: Enjoyable -- moderate carbonation, and finishes very clean. Another surprise.
Drinkability: Surprisingly drinkable. I approached this one with some reluctance, given the style and the fact that it's not from one of the great beer nations of the world, but this is really a nice beer. I like Billolick's idea of drinking this one in the sun with some fruity deserts, cheese and bread; being in Italy wouldn't be bad either.
05-20-2008 23:34:43 | More by rdickey
3.85/5 rDev +5.8%
A fellow BA brought this to a BA gathering the other day, from a large bottle.
A - light amber/golden. Head is white and puffy, lacing and retention minimal until you stir it up at which point it bubbles up furiously.
S - strong aroma of dark fruits, currants, red grapes, apricot. Little bit of alcohol in there, too. Light toasted, honey malt aroma. No hops.
T - taste mirrors the nose. Assertive dark fruit flavor dominated by red grapes, dried berries. Light malt flavor mixed in, wheat, honey, wheat toast. Little bit of bitterness, but this beer is on the sweet side.
M - very thin body, carbonation high, a little too high in my opinion. Like a champagne.
D - tasty fruit flavor, but carbonation is off the charts for me.
11-21-2006 03:34:36 | More by gbarron
3.75/5 rDev +3%
Unusually shaped bottle, thin label lets the imbiber know that this one was Matured over six months and Bottled on January 18, 2006 Opened with a powerful pop, that had me fearing a nasty spill over. It never materialized thankfully. Pours with a lot of carbonation, threatening a pour over on every refill. Frothy, loose and long lasting mildly apricot head, slowly morphing to loose, splotchy lacing. Nose is of light grape jelly and a faint mustiness. Pours cloudy murky peanut butter light brown. Notes of the expected fruitiness, grapes, berries, yeasty gunk at the bottom of the bottle. Fresh, refreshing and went pretty well with some cheese and crackers. Not something I would drink that often but I would like to try some on a sunny summer afternoon, lying by the pool on a hill side in Italy with some fruity desserts, more cheese, salad and crusty bread
03-25-2007 02:44:19 | More by Billolick
3.75/5 rDev +3%
(Served in a tulip glass)
A- This beer pours a huge head that takes up all but a small bit of the bottom. The head is a creamy white that has strong lacing as the head dies down (it never fades). The body is a hazy orange with lots and lots of tiny bubbles.
S- The soft smell of wheat and a faint black currants. A slight tart note is in the background.
T- Soft sweet and tart currant note at the beginning followed by some pale malt and wheat and a faint peppery finish. As it warms there is some stronger dark cherry flavors but not overpowering.
M- light mouthfeel with a fizz from the carbonation. Not much of a bit from the carbonic acid.
D- This beer is pretty soft and subtle with a nice flavor. It was a bit frustrating to have to pour a few sips and let it sit for 10 minutes until the head died back enough to add more. It has potential and I would drink it over champagne but I would have to chill it ice cold to get a good pour.
09-24-2005 01:33:02 | More by rhoadsrage
3.75/5 rDev +3%
750ml bottled Jan 27,2005
Pours out dark orange with a ridiculously large head that seemed to stand tall forever. When it finally dropped it left a decent wave of lace around the glass. Light fruity currant with some funky yeast notes in the aroma. A bit of spice was in there as well. Slightly sweet start to the flavor with underlying berry notes and more of the funky yeastiness. A bit spicy and earthy as well. Finishes on a funky fruit sweetness that lingered for awhile. A bit much on the carbonation hurts the mouthfeel and drinkability. If that was toned down a notch it would greatly help this brew out.
11-16-2005 20:57:31 | More by meathookjones
3.75/5 rDev +3%
Beer with cassis.
Amber reddish color. A lot of foam, white, beautiful, creamy, compact. Some turbidity and floating yeast.
The smell is fruity, and floreal, blue. Very flavoured. Cassis, berry fruits.
The taste is fruity too, sweet, complex, floral. Berry fruits again, a light citric. Blackberry, strawberry. Light tartness, that increases the drinkability of this complex beer. Sweetness and some tartness, white grapes.
Medium body, good strucuture.
The aftertaste is fruity, on the same notes, and floral again.
A lot of things in this beer, complex and peculiar. Maybe the fruity can be a little boring after some while, with the high spumante-like carbonation.
Very very interesting.
06-19-2005 17:46:28 | More by stcules
Cassissona from Birrificio Italiano
83 out of 100 based on 54 ratings.