Escoffier Bretta Ale - Brewery Vivant

Not Rated.
Escoffier Bretta AleEscoffier Bretta Ale

Educational use only; do not reuse.
BA SCORE
86
very good

46 Reviews
THE BROS
-
no score

(Send Samples)
Reviews: 46
Hads: 190
rAvg: 3.87
pDev: 5.94%
Wants: 19
Gots: 29 | FT: 4
Brewed by:
Brewery Vivant visit their website
Michigan, United States

Style | ABV
American Wild Ale |  9.25% ABV

Availability: Limited (brewed once)

Notes & Commercial Description:
Beer added by: GRPunk on 09-09-2012

This beer is retired; no longer brewed.

No notes at this time.
Beer: Reviews & Ratings
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Reviews: 46 | Hads: 190
Photo of brentk56
3.75/5  rDev -3.1%
look: 3.75 | smell: 3.75 | taste: 3.75 | feel: 3.75 | overall: 3.75

Appearance: A bit of a gusher, but once that was addressed the beer pours a brilliant copper color with a massive head; nice stickage and lacing that sheets

Smell: Caramel, yeast, banana and funk

Taste: Caramel tones, up front, with rotting fruit tartness developing - fortified white wine grape, apricot and banana; the funk builds, after the swallow and both tart and funk flavors linger on the palette through the finish

Mouthfeel: Medium to full body with moderate carbonation

Overall: An interesting beer that is likely beyond its prime; the combination of the sweetness from the malt and the tartness from the wild yeast strains makes me think that there is more at work here than just the Brett; the flavors aren't great and it reminds me a bit of an Oloroso sherry (781 characters)

Photo of ThickNStout
3.89/5  rDev +0.5%
look: 3.25 | smell: 3.5 | taste: 4.25 | feel: 4 | overall: 3.75

16oz can from IAmJacksHopTongue that I have kept for almost 2 years now. Served in a goblet.

Pours a brilliant copper with a finger and a half manilla froth. The head fades quickly to a thin ring and a little surface haze, leaving nothing in the way of lace.

The aroma is very assertive with yeasty barnyard funk. Some malty wet hay and vaguely sugary sweetness lingers in the background. Lighter notes of spice and mild fruit also make appearances.

The flavor is considerably better than the nose led me to expect. Over ripe fruit, white wine, wet hay, yeasty funk, old vegitables, mild clove, simple syrup, candi sugar and a little alcohol. This almost comes across like a funky mead. Lots of fruit and funk with a nice booze bite.

Medium full body with faint carbonation. Finish is dry with funk, meady sweetness and a little spice.

I'm not much of a wild ale aficionado but Escoffier is some good stuff. The heft of it's body and the sweetness give this an edge over most other wild ales I've tried. I can't speak to what this was like when fresh in late 2012 but this particular can was delicious. (1,112 characters)

Photo of ferrari29
3.82/5  rDev -1.3%
look: 3.25 | smell: 3.75 | taste: 4 | feel: 3.75 | overall: 3.75

Beer poured from can into a Tulip shaped glass

A - Beer pours with a half finger sized dark beige colored head; doesn't hold very well; body appears effervescent; color is dark copper, slightly reddish hue; moderate amount of lacing

S - Sweet, sugar and biscuit; extremely malty and packed with brown sugar; spices; caramel and banana; fruity

T - Deep malt flavor; touch of sour flavor on the sides of the mouth; fruit - like grapes and a touch of banana; moderate hop aftertaste; yeast; slight touch of mold at the beginning of the sip; alcohol - you can taste the ABVs

M - Effervescent; bitter aftertaste

D - Smooth malt flavor; great alcohol taste; very good beer, plenty of alcohol (690 characters)

Photo of facundoCNB
4.17/5  rDev +7.8%
look: 3.75 | smell: 4.25 | taste: 4.25 | feel: 3.75 | overall: 4.25

a very nice clean amber pour with a finger of head which quickly dissipated. aromas of oak, wine barrels, funky brett yeast/farmhouse/wet hay/jasmine, grapes, bananas. this is a very strong tasting wild ale.. lots of banana like in a tripel, caramel, with TONS of barrel flavor, jasmine/flower petals, grapes/wine.

medium to full body with modest amount of carbonation, a very dry finish and an overall sweet beer. this is a very nice (yet strong) wild ale, full of flavor (both beer-like AND wild yeast).. usually wild ales lean towards the yeast and making it as funky as possible.. not this one, this is a full flavored beer, very belgian tripel/dubbel in grain bill style, with a hint of brett and tons of wood and grape flavors. (734 characters)

Photo of emerge077
2.99/5  rDev -22.7%
look: 3.5 | smell: 3.75 | taste: 2.75 | feel: 2.25 | overall: 2.75

Cellared this for awhile in hopes it would improve, but it seemed the same.

Decanted into a tulip glass, it has a bright clarity and saturated orange copper color. Initial head of foam dwindles to nothing, no lace or surface skim at all which is odd. KInd of a dull winey appearance.

Brett aromas of wet hay, spice and dried fruit. Tangy and a little sweet.

More tanginess in the taste, just sort of oddly jarring and sweet, slick with low carbonation. Not much complexity, some minor dried fruit notes, mushy apple baby food, dull and overly sweet. Reminds me more of an Old Ale like Gales than a Bretty Belgian. Not dry at all really, just flabby and sweet with an odd tangy Brett finish. Not a fan, will probably dump out the last can... it's not worth drinking. (771 characters)

Photo of Fcolle2
4.34/5  rDev +12.1%
look: 4 | smell: 4.25 | taste: 4.5 | feel: 4.25 | overall: 4.25

Pours amber in color with a slight red hue. Frothy one finger off white head that has good retention. Lots of small carbonated bubbles all through the beer.

Nose has a distinct tart yeasty Belgian charicter to it. Slight clove notes with hints of dark cherry and strawberry fruits

taste is great some light fruity flavors show up first and disappear quickly into a mildly tart Belgian tang. Some more dark fruity plum like sweetness overlays a light grainy malt.

Mouthfeel is crisp and refreshing but still somewhat stick from the fruity sweetness. (552 characters)

Photo of tectactoe
4.03/5  rDev +4.1%
look: 3.5 | smell: 4.25 | taste: 4 | feel: 4 | overall: 4

Put "Brett" on the label and I'm immediately drawn in like a pike to the shiny metallic lure; being a local Michigan beer only makes it more alluring. Escoffier pours a translucent copper color - hazy, but not quite as hazy as I was expecting this bretta ale to be. The gray-tinted foam settles rapidly atop the brew as it loudly fizzles and crackles as it wisps away to nothing but a collar.

Funky ass Brett fills my nostrils with the first whiff; it's the kind of Brett that makes you wonder why the hell people enjoy beer that smells like a horse's ass... but dammit, I love it. Old, overripe, funky pineapple tartness, dirty barn floors, and damp, musty bales of hay. I'm unsure if this beer was made with 100% brettanomyces, but from the aroma, I would be shocked if it wasn't.

It's not completely one-track minded, however. There's a very nice fruitiness that combats the funk and keeps things from getting too out of kilter. Strawberry, cherry, and lighter hints of apple and lemon zest. There's a subtle tartness that comes along with the fruit, but not enough to make me think that this beer will be anything close to "puckering" upon taking the first sip.

And I'm right, for the most part. The fruit comes out first; apple, cherry, and pineapple with a sharp and nearly astringent tartness, but not enough to make you wince or grimace. The tartness quickly fades into the funky abyss. It's like licking a barnyard wall after a strong rain. So musty and old and funky, but in such a strangely compelling way.

Just as you start digesting the lovely horsey funk flavors and earthy must, the fruit makes a Aerosmith-like comeback at the end, finishing strong with some tart, bitter cherry skins, a mild citrus push, and a touch of acetone. If anything, Escoffier was quite a bit more complex than I ever thought it would be. Carbonated heavily, medium bodied; slick and fairly soft on the palate.

Very interesting beer, right here. Not quite a sour ale or a "wild ale" as it's listed here, and it's actually much closer to being a Belgian ale. Think something along the lines of Orval, perhaps with a bit more funk and tartness. I'm assuming some extended shelf time will only develop this beer and stir things up a bit more. Excited to see how it plays out over the years to come. (2,292 characters)

Photo of olympuszymurgus
4.72/5  rDev +22%
look: 4 | smell: 4.5 | taste: 5 | feel: 4.5 | overall: 4.75

I've had a number of cans since last years release, and I have a few more for the coming years. Pours a golden amber, well carbonated, spritely and energetic. Aromas of lemon, honey, toast points, caramel, must and earth. Flavor is of warm mushrooms and citrus, earthy backbone under and flowery perfume and citrus blanket. Fan-fuckin-tastic.

In the last year it's gotten earthier, meatier and deeper flavored. The citrus has ebbed, banana notes coming into the forefront and spice growing. It's dirtier yet more caramel notes stand out.

Vivant- keep fighting the good fight. (579 characters)

Photo of PincheNorteno
4.85/5  rDev +25.3%
look: 4.25 | smell: 4.75 | taste: 5 | feel: 5 | overall: 4.75

I drank this when it was very fresh, and didn't know what to expect. I'd first tasted only one wild ale prior to this and was intrigued.

Mine poured a simple brown from the can, with a slight hue of copper if held to the light, a tad cloudy. Immediately you know that this brew is special. Medium bodied with a complex earthy woodish aroma, there's a great dryness and subdued tartness that hit your nose. The flavor is totally unique, it just reminded me of something rustic like stables and hay, Brett is not overpowering but it's funk is beyond words.

I still have a single can of this that I intend to cellar at least another year. (638 characters)

Photo of xnicknj
3.9/5  rDev +0.8%
look: 3.75 | smell: 3.75 | taste: 4 | feel: 3.75 | overall: 4

16oz can poured into tulip - thanks erikkoppin

Hazed golden pour with some copper hues, topped by a fluffy, building white head which leaves streaked webs of lacing littered all around the glass.

Funky and slightly tart in the nose with fresh cut grass and wet hay. Bretty with hints of citrus fruit and spice, soft floral note and warmth.

Powerful brett presence up front, coupled with lemon peel and tartness. Funky yeast, spice, cut grass and floral notes punctuate the profile on top of a mild malt backbone. Dry, bretty finish with soft warmth.

Fuller medium body, higher carbonation, bubbly and full on the tongue. I was a little worried this would be over the top, but couldn't believe this was over 9% once I actually drank it. Perhaps a little strong with the brett, but still a decent wild ale. (811 characters)

Photo of Treebs
2.88/5  rDev -25.6%
look: 4 | smell: 3.5 | taste: 2.75 | feel: 3 | overall: 2

16 oz. can served in a Brewery Vivant snifter.

A: Pours a grapefruit like color with a white head forming on the pour. It recedes to a thin collar that leaves some sticky lace down the glass.

S: A good amount of Brett is present in the nose. A little funky with some slightly cheesy undertones. Orange sweetness and fruitiness as well. Pale malt sweetness.

T: Oaky and dried grass with a good deal of Bretty funk. Grape-like with a very drying texture. The booze is sweet and not that well hidden. A bit of newspaper as well. A rotten plum flavor sort of creeps up on the back end. Not terrible, but not that appealing.

M: Medium to light bodied with a very drying texture. Medium high carbonation.

O: Very imbalanced and the Brett overtakes everything. I've been disappointed from Vivant lately. Hopefully they pick it back up and make some more balanced beers. (868 characters)

Photo of ehammond1
4.15/5  rDev +7.2%
look: 4.25 | smell: 4.25 | taste: 4 | feel: 4.25 | overall: 4.25

Can (2012)

Acquired via trade
Thanks, Spartan213!

(Aged for 6+ months)

Clear dark orange and amber. Moderate near-white head. Decent retention. Standard, irregular lined lacing left down the glass. Pretty.

While the aroma is certainly yeast-forward, there's some definite candied, mandarin orange character as well. Some grass and farmhouse elements play nicely. I like this quite a bit.

The flavor is similar, with yeast and mandarin orange notes playing nicely, decent amount of barnyard and dry grass, and low bitterness. Incredibly drinkable. Alcohol is exceptionally well hidden. As it warms, this becomes a touch too sweet.

Medium bodied with fairly high carbonation.

Easily, the best saison I've ever had from a can! (731 characters)

Photo of Thaddeus
2.73/5  rDev -29.5%
look: 3 | smell: 2.5 | taste: 2.75 | feel: 3 | overall: 2.75

Appearance: Clear amber color with an average head, foamy and white.

Aroma & Taste: Had a weird smell and taste I couldn't place. Reminded me of a marsala wine I tried earlier in the year. Had some notes of soy sauce, but also had a sweetness and earthiness to it. (265 characters)

Photo of MichaelNickerson
4.41/5  rDev +14%
look: 4.25 | smell: 3.75 | taste: 4.75 | feel: 4.5 | overall: 4.5

Appearance - pours a light copper with semi cloudiness

Smell - not sure what I truly think about the smell, but I relate it very much like clean carpet. It's a very fresh smelling beer

Taste - fruity including apple and lemon with some sweetness to it. Finishes with a nice toasted bread

Mouthfeel - extremely thick beer with mild carbonation (346 characters)

Photo of finstadp
4.15/5  rDev +7.2%
look: 3.5 | smell: 4 | taste: 4.5 | feel: 3.75 | overall: 4

I recently had the pleasure of trying the Escoffier Bretta Ale from Brewery Vivant. This beer had a wonderful light bronze appearance. The aroma was very fruity and pleasant. The flavor was light bodied with delicious fruity notes. This is definitely a refreshing beer that would be great on a hot summer day. (309 characters)

Photo of minterro
3.81/5  rDev -1.6%
look: 3.75 | smell: 4.5 | taste: 3.5 | feel: 3.5 | overall: 3.75

Got this beer for free at work, its been sitting around for a while... no bottling date but my guess is that it is quite old. Although, I just noticed that it says ages up to 5 years on the can so maybe the delay might be good for it. It certainly wont get sun damaged.

A&S: Very lively fizzy head when poured non aggressively. Translucent light copper colored beer with a off white head that dies quickly. Very intriguing aroma: peaches, pears, grassy hops.

T&M: Very fruity and flowery upon first taste. At first the was finish is kinda offensive... I tried to check to see if there was any plastic lining to this can, it doesn't appear to be any and it tastes like there isn't. This later faded away to a sour green apple tart like taste. non-bitter with super well hidden alcohol. Moderate amount of carbonation, on the lowish side of mouthfeel.

Overall: Minus the unfortunate can finish in the beginning of this beer it was pretty solid. Overall enjoyable but would have been a bit disappointed paying around $5 for this one, like it was originally marked as. Rather have the wild something something (1,109 characters)

Photo of yourefragile
3.66/5  rDev -5.4%
look: 3.5 | smell: 3.75 | taste: 3.5 | feel: 3.5 | overall: 4

16 oz can shared by Thorpe, thanks!

Pours a clear, medium dark copper with a transient thin white head that fades to a thin ring of bubbles. Nose of brett, sugar, apple, lemons, grass, and cinnamon. Pleasantly sweet and tart flavor, with a yeasty and bready base, with some sugar and green apple sweetness before a slightly tart finish. Medium light body with soft carbonation, well hidden alcohol. Pleasant but not exceptional. (429 characters)

Photo of jeonseh
3.41/5  rDev -11.9%
look: 3.5 | smell: 3.75 | taste: 3.25 | feel: 3.5 | overall: 3.25

Can poured into a HF tulip

A - Light copper color with a reflective body. Had a one finger crisp white head that settled down to only slight foam on the slides. Lots of carbonation trailing upwards

S - Light tart lemon, slight vinegar, and Brett initially. There is also a soft green apple that reminds me a bit of Chardonnay

T - Light sweet apple, lemon, and slightly grassy. Lots of amber malt comes in the middle to give it a bready, slightly sweet that reminds me a bit of Fat Tire actually. The finish is slight green apple and bready malt.

MF - Medium, slightly thick beer with light carbonation. Dry finish

O - Overall, this reminds me of a slightly tart and bretted version of Fat Tire. There is a lot more bready, sweet malt than there is tartness or Brett. Slightly disappointed by this one. (807 characters)

Photo of spointon
3.3/5  rDev -14.7%
look: 4.25 | smell: 3 | taste: 3.25 | feel: 3.75 | overall: 3.25

I poured this one from a tall can into a Duvel stemmed tulip.

A= This ale poured a crystal clear orange amber color with a 3/8" white head. The head dropped to zero super fast. No lace to speak of.

S= Aroma was mostly one note...apple skin tannic...with a bright burst of the Vivant house yeast esters to give it what little depth it has.

T= Starts off lightly sweet, then moves into the ralm of tart apple and grape skins. Not a lot of malt character, or any hops, or any real esters or Brett character to note. It's really a sort of blah, one note beer. Finishes puckery with that apple skin tannin ruling the day.

MF= Light to medium body, with a moderate carbonation level. Not a lot of visible carbonation release despite the nuclear ion point in the glass.

D= Pretty drinkable, but the flavors are very one note and the brett is almost non-existant. If I didn't know this was a brett beer, I wouldn't know this was a brett beer. (939 characters)

Photo of Sammy
3.89/5  rDev +0.5%
look: 3.5 | smell: 3.75 | taste: 4 | feel: 3.75 | overall: 4

Wild mildly sharp aroma, enticing. Orange colour orange taste,in fact a long finish of orange, though mildly sour mid-sip.Some tart berry, lemon Good drinkability. Brian’s can, thanks for sharing. Sweetened by sugar, brett. Perhaps next batch will really hit the mark. (270 characters)

Photo of TMoney2591
4.27/5  rDev +10.3%
look: 4 | smell: 4.5 | taste: 4.25 | feel: 4 | overall: 4.25

Served in a Lagunitas mason jar.

Never thought I'd see a beer pimping the memory of a French culinary pioneers. Nothing wrong with it, just a tad unexpected, is all. Anyway, this stuff pours a clear amber topped by a finger of cream foam. The nose comprises nearly-tart mandarin orange, grapefruit zest, farmhouse-style funk, light apple cider, and a hint of sweet caramel in the background. The taste brings in more of the same, with the Brett accentuating the innate tartness of the orange and the grapefruit without muddying the waters or ignoring its own funk. The body is a light medium, with a light moderate carbonation and a sorta/kinda drying finish. Overall, a damn tasty brew, one that manages a lot of flavor without overdoing any aspect. Good times. (763 characters)

Photo of SportsandJorts
3.92/5  rDev +1.3%
look: 4 | smell: 4.5 | taste: 3.5 | feel: 4 | overall: 4

16 oz can poured into a tulip

appearance- clear, and deep orange, almost red in color. one and a half finger head that recedes slowly to a lacing along the sides

smell- wonderful smell of green apples and bretta.

taste- not quite up to the nose. the tart apples and bretta come in nicely but there is a slightly off taste that follows that is a little musky. the alcohol is well hidden and the taste mostly consists of sour and funk.

mouthfeel- lighter in body and pretty strong carbonation. a nice drinkable beer

overall- i really enjoy this beer except the slight muskiness that comes in the taste. i can't wait to try this with a little age under it. (658 characters)

Photo of EgadBananas
3.6/5  rDev -7%
look: 4 | smell: 4 | taste: 3.5 | feel: 3 | overall: 3.5

Pours a nice dark orange, somewhat rusty coloured, with a light tan finger and a half of bubbly head and lots of streaming bubbles. Leaves some foam behind.

The aroma is definitely funk, with some wet hay and musk, granny smith apple skins and a dash of acidity.

A somewhat odd taste... There's the Brett and a touch or tartness, and surprising fruity sweetness. It grows on you.

Mouthfeel is average. Somewhat low in carbonation, slick, somewhat soapy.

Unique and pretty enjoyable. Worth the try for sure. (513 characters)

Photo of ChugginOil
4.05/5  rDev +4.7%
look: 4 | smell: 4 | taste: 4 | feel: 4.5 | overall: 4

Pours a very murky orange/brown with a bit less than a fingers worth of white head. The lacing slides down without sticking.

The nose is very funky to say the least. Horse blanket and some slightly tart notes blend with sweet lemongrass and apricot.

The flavors are similar to the notes but much more intense. Some dry and semi-tart barnyard funk flavors come around first, followed by some juicy tropical fruits such as apricot and guava. The high ABV is pretty well hidden underneath all of the flavors.

The mouthfeel is medium bodied and is pretty sticky. Ample carbonation that works well with the slight tartness.

Overall, this is a pretty good example of what brett can do to a beer and how it basically intensifies the flavors. Pretty tasty stuff. (760 characters)

Photo of TubaManJack
3.06/5  rDev -20.9%
look: 4 | smell: 3 | taste: 3 | feel: 3 | overall: 3

Appearance: a light golden copper body and a rim of lasting lace pretty standard for what would expect with barely any carbonation.

Smell: a weak and light nose there is some must but there isn't a tartness or horseblanket bit which I come to expect.

Taste: slight bitterness with some fruit but I was expecting more yeast funk to be there. It's kinda like a wet farmhouse ale even after it warms up.

Mouthfeel is different- for a higher than average abv I would have expected a longer and thinner finish but when combined with the lack of carbonation- it seemed a little dense and sluggish.

Overall I feel like the carbonation was lacking and thats why I don't feel that this beer had a fair chance with me. If I did have a can of it I'd be glad to try again and chalk some of this up to the bar's undercarbonation. (824 characters)

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Escoffier Bretta Ale from Brewery Vivant
86 out of 100 based on 46 ratings.