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Cascade Blueberry Ale - Cascade Brewing / Raccoon Lodge & Brewpub

Not Rated.
Cascade Blueberry AleCascade Blueberry Ale

Educational use only; do not reuse.
BA SCORE
92
outstanding

729 Ratings
THE BROS
-
no score

(send 'em beer!)
Ratings: 729
Reviews: 124
rAvg: 4.13
pDev: 8.96%
Wants: 207
Gots: 195 | FT: 22
Brewed by:
Cascade Brewing / Raccoon Lodge & Brewpub visit their website
Oregon, United States

Style | ABV
American Wild Ale |  7.33% ABV

Availability: Winter

Notes & Commercial Description:
Beer added by: Smurf2055 on 01-30-2012

This NW style sour ale blends wheat and blond ales that were oak aged in barrels for six months, then additionally aged four months on fresh blueberries. Huge herbal notes of dense blueberries in the nose give way to hints of oak and a dusty floral note. Rich earthy notes of dark fruit on the palate lead to a tart finish that dries out to a base note of blueberry skins.
Beer: Ratings & Reviews
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Ratings: 729 | Reviews: 124
Photo of drpimento
3.51/5  rDev -15%
look: 4 | smell: 3 | taste: 3.5 | feel: 4.5 | overall: 3.5

This is good as an oak aged sour, but other than in the appearance, I could hardly tell that is was a blueberry beer.

Photo of metter98
4.2/5  rDev +1.7%
look: 3.75 | smell: 4.25 | taste: 4.25 | feel: 4 | overall: 4.25

A: The beer is clear purplish red in color and has a light amount of visible carbonation. It poured with a quarter finger high pink head that died down, leaving patches of bubbles covering the surface and a collar around the edge of the glass.
S: Moderate aromas of blueberries are present in the nose along with notes of oak and hints of sourness.
T: The taste is dominated by flavors of blueberries and has notes of oak barrels and hints of sourness. Despite all of the fruity flavors, no sweetness is perceptible.
M: It feels light- to medium-bodied and somewhat tart on the palate with a moderate amount of carbonation.
O: I really enjoyed the the dominant flavors of blueberries, which appear to be natural and not of the artificial variety.

Serving type: bottle

Photo of RBassSFHOPit2ME
4.25/5  rDev +2.9%
look: 4.25 | smell: 4.25 | taste: 4.25 | feel: 4.25 | overall: 4.25

This beer, along with every Cascade beer I've had is very good. None have impressed me nearly enough to warrant the price tag that goes with them.

Arrogant price not at all reflected on my score. Solid American Wild Ale.

Photo of travisdiener32
1.52/5  rDev -63.2%
look: 4 | smell: 2 | taste: 1 | feel: 2 | overall: 1

$30 going down the drain, a shame

Photo of gjoker321
3.4/5  rDev -17.7%
look: 4 | smell: 3.25 | taste: 3.25 | feel: 3.75 | overall: 3.5

Somewhat unpleasant phenolic band-aid aftertaste dominates the finish turning a very delightful and delicate beer the wrong direction.

Photo of smcolw
3.83/5  rDev -7.3%
look: 3.75 | smell: 3.75 | taste: 4 | feel: 3.5 | overall: 3.75

Looks like a merlot with a ring of rim bubbles. No lace.

Sour nose with a faint aroma of blueberry.

Very sour. Reminds me of a blueberry mead I made once. Very low carbonation but the body is neutral. Long sour aftertaste.

Photo of champ103
4.31/5  rDev +4.4%
look: 4.25 | smell: 4.5 | taste: 4.25 | feel: 4.25 | overall: 4.25

A: Pours a stunningly hazed vibrant purple/red color. A two finger white head forms, but recedes in a second with light lace.
S: Musty funk, and acidic berries up front. Jammy like fruits, vanilla, light wood. Simple and to the point, but also intense.
T: Like the nose simple, but intense. Sour, acidic, tart berries, and jammy fruits. The blueberries are there, but not as dominate. Vanilla and oak flavors. The lingering acidic punch leaves a dryness.
M/D: A medium body that has soft and fine carbonation. This is surprisingly delicate, at first. Until the acidity takes over, which leaves this incredibly dry, and maybe a bit tannin like. I could enjoy sipping on this all day. The sour and acidic punch becomes a little heavy handed, but not overpowering. I love it.

I have had slightly more intense sours than this. Though this is not mild at all. The simple acidic, jammy fruits, mixed with the barrel is great. All around really enjoyable.

Photo of kojevergas
3.88/5  rDev -6.1%
look: 3.75 | smell: 3.75 | taste: 3.75 | feel: 4.5 | overall: 4

BOTTLE: 750ml brown glass bottle with hood-and-wire cap over a cork purchase from Cascade earlier this year. Label design is appealing. "2013 project."

7.75% ABV. Reviewed live as a fruited sour ale per the label. Side-poured with standard vigor as no carbonation issues are anticipated. Served cold into a tulip in high altitude Castle Rock, CO and allowed to warm over the course of consumption.

No bubble show forms as it's poured.

HEAD: Fizzy and pink. Thin. Not real creamy or frothy. Vigorous and effervescent. The head rolls towards the sides of the glass, lending the beer a nice cascading effect (apt given the brewery). Retains well - for about 4-5 minutes, leaving no lacing.

BODY: Clear vibrant brilliant sanguine red. Clean, with no visible yeast particulate or hop sediment.

Appears well-carbonated. It's a great looking sour ale, but it could be better - a blue body colour for example would be more striking, and the head could certainly be thicker and fuller, and could have a softer consistency.

AROMA: Berries and currants dominate, with blueberry noticeable in there - but not as pungent as would be ideal. It's a powdery aroma, with the berry juice bleeding into the blonde malts. The blueberry is surprisingly fresh considering this beer's age. Oak is subtle and lends the aroma a nice wooden character, but don't expect any rich white oak or toasted characteristics; it's quite a neutral oak character. It's not as tart as I hoped for, and the lactobacillus-induced sourness is maybe a 4-5/10 in terms of intensity. Also, this aroma doesn't evoke a truly spontaneously fermented or particularly wild ale, instead coming off sterile and clinical. Lambicus wild yeast and more intricate bacteria would be beneficial.

Overall, it's an inviting aroma of above average strength. I wish it were more sour, more tart, and more arresting.

TASTE: Boasts a wonderful blueberry presence which is fresh, juicy, and refreshing. Sadly, the tartness and sourness I hoped for (characteristics experienced in abundance in Cascade's Kriek) just aren't quite there...it's only a bit tart and the sourness is - at best - a 4/10.

The oak really develops as the beer comes to temperature, emerging most prominently in the third act, where it becomes so wonderful it almost eclipses the tastiness of the blueberries. The oak lends the flavour profile a natural cohesion, and helps make the beer feel like more of a gestalt whole.

Blonde malts bend to the will of the juicy berry notes - which aren't limited to blueberry but which I lack the expertise to properly identify - easily allowing themselves to be imposed upon. Blonde malts were a great choice for this sour - neutral enough to let the sourness take center stage - but flavorful enough to add needed depth of flavour.

A hint of apple cidre vinegar. A kiss of vanilla as the beer warms. There's a faint jammy sweetness which is lovely, but might oppose the sourness of the beer...which brings me to the balance: it's a very well balanced brew, but more sourness and intensity of flavour would really help the overall flavour profile come off better. And with that jammy sweetness, it could easily tolerate more sourness and tartness. Blueberry is tough to execute, and Cascade has largely succeeded - but take a page out of Cantillon Blabaer's book and commit to the blueberries. It's nicely lactic, but they could go bigger there.

TEXTURE: What really works here is the soft, comforting, powdery mouthfeel, which refreshes the palate and make this hard to put down. Quenching, smooth, wet, and perfectly medium-bodied, with slight overcarbonation and apt thickness.

This texture is near perfect for the style, and compliments the taste beautifully. If only the flavour profile offered more intricacy for the mouthfeel to support.

OVERALL: 7.33% is high for a fruited sour, but you wouldn't notice it drinking this fine fruited ale. Drinkability is off the charts. Blueberry is a tricky note to implement, but Cascade has largely succeeded here. I just long for more tartness and sourness, and would like to see more complexity/intricacy, and subtlety. More than just a modest amount of lactobacillus is needed to create a great sour. If there are any notes for Cascade here, it's more bacteria, more wild yeast, more berries, more intensity. All in all, a tasty sour that - while superb - just isn't worth its unreasonable pricetag. Extremely drinkable. Definitely try this once.

The oak in the third act is a real treat, and makes this a truly special beer. Definitely a highlight. Wow.

B+

Photo of TWStandley
4.04/5  rDev -2.2%

Poured from the bottle into a taster glass. 2012 vintage.

Appeared a purply-red color with a one finger white head that dissapeared quickly.

Smelled funky - fresh blueberries, lemons, orange zest.

Taste was a bit less heavy on the blueberries than anticipated but very fresh tasting. Definitely sour.

Mouthfeel was light and bubbly.

Overall a solid blueberry sour.

Photo of 01001111
3/5  rDev -27.4%

I'm typically a big fan of Cascade's sours but this one had a very strong phenolic flavor (band-aids) which almost ruined it for me.

Photo of sprat1960
4.36/5  rDev +5.6%
look: 4.5 | smell: 4 | taste: 4.5 | feel: 4.25 | overall: 4.5

Deep purple in color, translucent with a slightly hazy appearance due to the carbonation. Large creamy white head that dies down quickly leaving a thin uneven layer of foam on the surface of the beer and lots of sticky lacing on the sides of the glass. Great sweet and sour aroma; you can smell the sweet fruit followed by a noticeable musty, sour finish. Taste starts with a fruity blueberry flavor followed by a sour and slightly dry finish. Very thirst-quenching. Light to medium body, slightly fizzy from the large amount of light carbonation. Overall a very unique beer. The best blueberry beer that I have ever had. I would definitely purchase again.

Photo of BMMillsy
2.19/5  rDev -47%
look: 4 | smell: 2.5 | taste: 1.75 | feel: 3 | overall: 1.75

Corked and caged bottle from Gator Beverage. Pours a deep ruby purple color with a small pinkish white head that dissipates quickly. Aroma of sour vinegar, sour cherry, a little vanilla oak, and some light berry notes. Flavor is oaky vanilla sour vinegar with just a light highlight of blueberry, and a hint of the vomity acidic acetone flavor I get from any beer with blueberries in it. Luckily it isn’t super of off-putting in this beer as it is hidden by the sour vinegar and oaky vanilla flavors. Light ot medium bodied with lots of spritzy carbonation. Interesting beer that leaves a good bit to be desired. This is my third Cascade brew and I continue to be underwhelmed. Hopefully the Kriek in the fridge changes my mind. At $30 a bottle I expect a good bit more, but I guess the souring and oak come through nicely here.

As I go on, this gets more and more like drinking rubbing alcohol. Not sure if this is a bad bottle or what, but not good.

This is getting worse and worse. Like drinking straight paint thinner. Just terrible. Nope.

Photo of abeeronthebeach
4.1/5  rDev -0.7%
look: 4.25 | smell: 4.25 | taste: 4 | feel: 4.25 | overall: 4

A - Hazy red as of raspberry.

S - It smells very sour yet I'm struggling to pick out particular strands.

T - A little more oak character than in most other Cascade beers. Musty blueberry although its faint due to being such a mild fruit on such a sour beer. A tiny bit of bitterness to the finish.

M - Medium-low carbonation with a bright and refeshing feel on the palate.

O - Blueberry is overpowered by sourness.

Photo of StonedTrippin
4.24/5  rDev +2.7%
look: 4 | smell: 4.25 | taste: 4.25 | feel: 4.25 | overall: 4.25

i havent had a ton of beer from cascade, but one takeaway from the ones i have had, is that these guys may well be the king of fruit. their apricot is just divine, and this blueberry is just as well done. deep dark purple in color, all from the fruit, i can see a probable blonde beer base underneath, but the stain from the berries is deep. a nose thats more sour than it is fruity, with lots of mellowing oak and then the fruit punch complex of the blueberries, which are as tart as they are sweet. the flavor follows a similar format, sourness first mostly on the front end, before the fruit ramps up. the berries do add some sugar that isnt all the way fermented out, which i like, because its a nice balance to the sourness. i think the true flavor of the blueberry here is as authentic and prominent as the apricot, although i think the apricot it a better beer, the use of fruit and brewing expertise on display is the same. jammy middle before the wood softens the finish. its earthy and summery and reminds me of a place i would like to be, out in a blueberry patch in august gorging myself until my face and hands are stained purple. a special beer, the best blueberry beer ive ever had by leaps and bounds.

Photo of Axnjxn
4.27/5  rDev +3.4%
look: 4.5 | smell: 4.25 | taste: 4.25 | feel: 4.25 | overall: 4.25

750ml bottle into a teku glass. 2012 project

pours a dark purple with a nice finger inch white fizzy head that dissipates quickly. smell is a tad sour with some fruit...blueberries for sure. taste starts out fairly tart but does dissipate quick. the fruit takes over and there is a good blueberry flavor to this one though it doesnt linger on the palate. slight sourness at the back end. pretty good! medium carbonation, medium bodied. pretty tasty...recommended.

Photo of Stevedore
3.69/5  rDev -10.7%
look: 4.25 | smell: 4.5 | taste: 3.25 | feel: 3.5 | overall: 3.5

750ml of the 2012 Blueberry project. Thanks to ChefBergo for extra'ing me this one. Poured into an unlabeled snifter today, 2/6/2014.

App- Pinkish-dark red body, one finger white head, good retention, good lacing. The pinkish-red hue on this beer is interesting; it's almost like a red wine.

Smell- Tons and tons of blueberry accompanied by oak and vinegar. Smells decently sour, 5/10 perhaps.

Flavour- Disappointing. Mostly a mustiness, funkiness accompanied by oak and vinegar. Don't get a ton of blueberries here like in the nose. Kind of watery.

Mouthfeel- Medium-thin bodied, good carbonation, but otherwise a bit watery and thin. Aftertaste is mostly this musty funkiness, not so much blueberry.

Overall- Certainly not the best that Cascade has made. I do not recommend this one.

Photo of LambicPentameter
4.19/5  rDev +1.5%
look: 4.25 | smell: 4 | taste: 4.25 | feel: 4.25 | overall: 4.25

Enjoyed out of a cork & caged brown 750 mL bottle with "2012 Project" marked on the label. Poured into a standard 16 oz tumbler glass.

Appearance - Pours a deep magenta purple with a fair amount of haze to the body. Enough particulate to make for an uneven distribution of color. Dark, bruise-like purple in some places, and lighter notes in others. Atop the body sits an fizzy head about a half-finger thick, the color of white with just a slightly violet hue to it. The head dissipates fairly quickly, leaving a rim of foam around the edge of the glass and a bit of bubbly film across the top.

Smell - Nice tart notes of blueberry, pinot noir must and red grapes, as well as some more pungent characteristics of oak barrel tannins and funk, providing a nice balance of acetic sharpness and more luscious fruit tones, like fresh-made preserves.

Taste - More of the same in the taste, with the jam presence becoming more aggressive and giving undertones of blackberry to compliment the tart presence of the blueberry. Musty barrel wood and a slight hint of vinegar work to provide some punch to the fruitiness. I'm rarely disappointed with sour-tasting beers that make use of blueberry's natural tartness and this one is no different.

Mouthfeel - Light bodied and high carbonation that provide for an effervescent, prickly feel to the beer. Enables the beer to avoid being taken over by the sweetness of the fruit used.

Overall, another fantastic one from Cascade. In my limited experience, they are really good at knocking out the "single fruit" sour beers like this one and the kriek (cherry) and apricot. Blueberry is especially great because of the unique look it imparts on the beer from the coloring as well as the natural tartness of blueberries. I'm only a tad curious to know how this one might've tasted closer to the bottling date, but based on how good it is a year old, I'd gladly take a bottle of any vintage that was offered.

Photo of brentk56
4.29/5  rDev +3.9%
look: 4.25 | smell: 4 | taste: 4.5 | feel: 4.25 | overall: 4.25

Appearance: Pours out the color of smashed blueberries, with a very nice head that leaves plenty of lacing

Smell: Tart and citric with undertones of blueberry

Taste: Citrusy and lactic, with blueberry tones developing in the middle and lingering in the finish

Mouthfeel: Light to medium body with moderate carbonation

Overall: Cascade has a way with sour fruit beers; always enjoyable to try them

Photo of jbaker67
4.08/5  rDev -1.2%
look: 4.25 | smell: 4.25 | taste: 4 | feel: 4 | overall: 4

Pours a slightly hazy reddish purple color with a small off white head. The aroma has a nice blueberry fruit character, mildly tart, woody, mild acidity, some earthy notes and light funk. The flavor is moderate blueberry fruit, wood, lightly acidic, mildly tart with some earthy qualities. This is not overly sour and doesn’t have the massive fruit punch of a Belgian Red, but this is still tasty and definitely worth trying.

Photo of scottfrie
4.29/5  rDev +3.9%
look: 4.25 | smell: 4 | taste: 4.5 | feel: 4.25 | overall: 4.25

2011 vintage poured into snifter.

A: Pours a clear cranberry juice color with a fizzy, very short lived, slightly pink head that faded to a fuzzy collar.
S: Fruity notes of blueberries, blackberries, and citrusy lemon juice. Slight earthy must in there as well.
T: Citric acid mixed with fresh blueberry flavor. Very delicious. Earthy damp basement in the finish, lingering lactic acid aftertaste with a touch of berry sweetness.
M: Drying, full mouthfeel, clean and tart with a light acid bite. Tons of light carbonation.
O: Probably the best blueberry I've had with the best example of blueberry flavor imparted in a beer. More flavor came through than expected, well done.

Photo of Alieniloquium
4/5  rDev -3.1%
look: 4 | smell: 4 | taste: 4 | feel: 4 | overall: 4

750 mL bottle poured into a snifter. 2011 project.

Appearance - Deep purplish red. Small off white head. Medium collar.

Smell - Blueberry isn't all that distinct, but I get it. Green and vegetal blueberry. Oak. Acidic.

Taste - Blueberry is more pronounced. Still green. Tons more oak. Malty with some stone fruit flavors. Sour.

Mouthfeel - Medium body. Medium low carbonation. Not too sour.

Overall - I've had this beer multiple times, but somehow never reviewed it. Quality sour as always.

Photo of dar482
4.13/5  rDev 0%
look: 4.75 | smell: 4.25 | taste: 4 | feel: 3.75 | overall: 4.25

The beer pours in a purple reddish color. Never quite seen a beer with this coolor.

The flavor has a blueberry juiciness along with musty notes and some oak. It smells a bit tart.

The flavor follows with lots of tartness of lemons and a strong citric note and it moves onto a berries, a bit of blueberry. There's a woody drying on the end along with a funky mustiness. Lots of blueberry peel in this.

A nice drinking sour.

Photo of Chriscrundwell12
3.91/5  rDev -5.3%
look: 4.25 | smell: 3.75 | taste: 4 | feel: 3.5 | overall: 4

(2012) 750 ml bottle poured into a 3 Fonteinen wine glass.

A- one finger bubbly white head, very thin, dissipates quickly, decent carbonation, pours a reddish purple color, very attractive looking beer.
S- The aroma, is funky but nothing too crazy, slight notes of blueberry, but i think i only pick that out because i know its made with blueberries. Hints of oak as well.
T- The taste is kind of disappointing. I feel like its missing something. The funkiness is mellow, get more oak in the taste, slight blueberry, but not very fruit forward, medicinal taste to it, some sour lemon. Interesting.
M- Medium mouthfeel, coats the palate, dry finish, decent amount of carbonation.
O- Im not too impressed with this beer. Its not bad, definitely can appreciate it, but i was hoping for something more. Hopefully the other variants i have are more enjoyable.

I had to come back and add this to the review. As it warms up, and the more i drink it the more the blueberry comes out. Still not as sour as i would of hoped for, but it still is young. I like it more the more i drink it.

Photo of MighHighBrewer
3.95/5  rDev -4.4%
look: 5 | smell: 3 | taste: 4.25 | feel: 3.75 | overall: 4.25

2012 vintage. Served via tulip glass on 8/24/2013

A: Pours a deep purple color with a slight ruby red hue. To my eye, it looks almost exactly like concord grape juice. Very dark - you cannot see through the glass at all. The beer pours with a 1/4-inch head that stays with you throughout your session - very nice. Lacing is excellent.

S: Underwhelming. Fruity notes dominate - mostly green apple and blueberry. In the background, oak and horse blanket funkiness are there. Honestly though, the nose is not very strong on this beer...which has been my experience with Cascades.

T & M: Sour citrus notes hit you right on the tongue - lemon and sour apple mostly - along with a hint of balsamic. The blueberry comes in mid-sip...kind of lingering in the background. The finish brings on the oak and a bit of mild funkiness. The finish is exceptional on this beer - very dry but with the appropriate amount of fruit that makes you want to go back for more. Carbonation on my bottle was a bit high for my taste. I'd reduce it about 5%.

O: This is a great sour, but not my favorite from Cascade (Apricot). The blueberries add an incredible visual flair to this beer, but not much else. I was underwhelmed with their presence in the aroma and taste of the beer. I wish I could taste the blueberries more, but the acid kinda blows them out. In a blind taste test, I'd have a hard time believing anybody would identify this as a blueberry beer. One other minor complaint I have is the carbonation level. It was a bit too high on this beer for my taste, which is odd considering I didn't find that with the Apricot. Overall, a highly recommended sour but not the best Cascade does.

Photo of superspak
4.32/5  rDev +4.6%
look: 4 | smell: 4.5 | taste: 4.5 | feel: 4 | overall: 4

750 ml bottle into tulip glass, 2012 vintage. Pours lightly hazy ruby red color with a 1-2 finger foamy light pink head with decent retention, that reduces to a small cap that lingers. Slight spotty lacing on the glass, with tons of streaming carbonation retaining the head. Aromas of big tart blueberry, green apple, cherry, pear, raspberry, pepper, hay, funk, oak, clove, leather, red wine, light vinegar, and yeast earthiness. Fantastic aromas with great balance and complexity of blueberry notes with fruity/spicy yeast and barrel presence; and big strength. Taste of tart blueberry, blueberry skin, green apple, pear, raspberry, pepper, hay, grass, oak, clove, funk, leather, red wine, light vinegar, and yeast earthiness. Good amount of fruity tartness on the finish; with lingering notes of blueberry, apple, pear, raspberry, pepper, oak, clove, hay, funk, red wine, light vinegar, and yeast earthiness on the finish for a good bit. Fantastic balance and complexity of blueberries with fruity/spicy yeast and barrel notes; with a fantastic balance of malt/acidity and zero cloying flavors after the finish. High carbonation and medium bodied; with a very crisp, prickly, and moderately acidic mouthfeel that is great. Alcohol is very well hidden with only a slight warming noticed after the finish. Overall this is a fantastic Blueberry sour ale! All around great complexity and balance of blueberry with fruity/funky yeast and oak character; and very smooth and crisp to drink with the moderate acidity. A highly enjoyable offering.

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Cascade Blueberry Ale from Cascade Brewing / Raccoon Lodge & Brewpub
92 out of 100 based on 729 ratings.