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Saboteur - Odell Brewing Company

Not Rated.

Displayed for educational use only; do not reuse.
very good

280 Ratings

(view ratings)
Ratings: 280
Reviews: 142
rAvg: 3.88
pDev: 14.95%
Wants: 112
Gots: 63 | FT: 5
Brewed by:
Odell Brewing Company visit their website
Colorado, United States

Style | ABV
American Wild Ale |  10.00% ABV

Availability: Limited (brewed once)

Notes/Commercial Description:
This beer is retired; no longer brewed.

No notes at this time.

(Beer added by: Oxymoron on 04-23-2010)
Beer: Ratings & Reviews
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Ratings: 280 | Reviews: 142 | Display Reviews Only:
Photo of zeff80
4.45/5  rDev +14.7%
look: 4.5 | smell: 4.5 | taste: 4.5 | feel: 4 | overall: 4.5

A - Poured out a dark brown color with ruby highlights. It had a two-finger tan of thick foam that had large bubbles of carbonation in the head.

S - It smelled of some barnyard funk, vanilla, bourbon, oak and malt. It is complex with none of the aromas overpowering the others.

T - It tasted of sourness, bourbon, vanilla and sweet caramel, toffee and touches of chocolate.

M - It was crisp, sharp and smooth. A medium to full bodied ale with an alcohol warmth.

D - This is a really good wild brown ale. I couldn't believe it had a few low scores because I thought it was fantstic.

zeff80, Jul 08, 2010
Photo of Mebuzzard
2.78/5  rDev -28.4%
look: 3 | smell: 3.5 | taste: 2.5 | feel: 3 | overall: 2.5

Found this at the Rackhouse, and I've had a sample of it before from the bottle. First time seeing it on tap.
Pours a glossy dark brown with no head whatsoever. Swirl did nothing to it. Reddish highlights.
Sour cherries aroma. Not sure if this is a sour beer or not. The malt comes through, barely. Mostly this is sourness and a bit of dark fruit.
Taste doesn't have the sourness, save for the finish. All in all, it's a bit boring flavor-wise. Some flat malt here, dark fruit there. If it weren't for the sour finish and pucker, it would be dull.
Not a fan of this one. Glad I didn't pay for it.

Mebuzzard, Jul 08, 2010
Photo of bonsreeb85
4.03/5  rDev +3.9%
look: 4.5 | smell: 4.5 | taste: 4 | feel: 4 | overall: 3.5

Dark cola(nearly black) with a tall and lasting biege soapy dome.

The nose is brett/funky filled.
Barnyard a-plenty!

Taste is full of vanilla, bourbon(yum) oak and funk. Chocolate and roasted malt are big players. The alcohol is warming but never abrasive. Pineapple is picked up, but only after I read it on the bottle. I am not sure that I could of singled it out w/o reading it first.

The body size is about medium with a moderate amount of CO2 and a smooth texture.

While still young and a bit hot, this beer is quite tasty. Time can only more this already good beer closer to that 5.0 mark. By far this is the best in Odell's Single Serving Series (IMHO).

bonsreeb85, Jul 02, 2010
Photo of Mora2000
4.33/5  rDev +11.6%
look: 4 | smell: 4.5 | taste: 4.5 | feel: 4 | overall: 4

The beer pours a dark brown color with an off-white head. The aroma is brett with some oak and cherries. The flavor starts off as that of a nutty brown ale and then you get a lot of lot of complexity. I get some cherries, bourbon, brett, oak, vanilla and chocolate. Medium mouthfeel and medium carbonation. A unique beer and one that I think really works well.

Mora2000, Jun 26, 2010
Photo of Reagan1984
3.95/5  rDev +1.8%
look: 4 | smell: 3.5 | taste: 4 | feel: 4.5 | overall: 4

Enjoyed this while in Denver. Shared it with some co-workers and was surprised how much they enjoyed it.

Poured with a nice silky light tan head. Decent retention and lots of lacing. Right in the edge of brown and ruby colored. Light at the edges getting through, but a rather dark beer.

Aroma is of DIRT. The label said earthy and they weren't kidding. Behind the dirt you sense vanilla, oak and just the slightest sense of tartness... not quite cherry, but something going on.

I was expecting something a bit more sour. Not there. Deep vanilla, oak flavor. Deep malt flavors meld with the slight sourness from the brett. Pretty complex. Some warming from the alcohol, but certainly not hot. This very slight tart note is perfect with the vanilla. Long smooth taste that lingers nicely.

Velvety smooth mouth feel.

Very enjoyable. Wish I bought a second bottle to take home with me.

Reagan1984, Jun 23, 2010
Photo of mothman
3.38/5  rDev -12.9%
look: 3.5 | smell: 4 | taste: 3 | feel: 3.5 | overall: 3.5

Thanks to kbutler1 for cracking this one.

Poured into Duvel glass.

Pours 1/4 finger of light tan colored head. Color is a dark murky brown.

Aroma: Sour notes, cherries, oak, light brett, light vinegar notes. Needs a bit of time imo.

Taste: Has a smoked/roasted malt taste with the sourness right behind it. Cherries, but not very tart. Has oak and funk. More brett showing. Also some vanilla.

Mouthfeel: Funky, crisp, and dry. Medium bodied with a medium to high carbonation. Ends dry with some light funk to it.

Overall, this beer is odd. Smells pretty good. Taste is not as good. Not very tart, but I think it might get pretty sour with time. The malt doesn't go well with the beer. Maybe time will help it.

mothman, Jun 22, 2010
Photo of DefenCorps
3.7/5  rDev -4.6%
look: 4.5 | smell: 4 | taste: 3.5 | feel: 4 | overall: 3.5

Thank you, Nathan!

The pour is reddish brown, capped with a dense but thin light brown head with excellent retention and lacing. The nose is solid. Cocoa, leather, tobacco, oak, tannins and a mild funk are all present. A touch of red wine as well? The Brett is rather expressive, with a mellow, cheesy funk with some barnyard as well. I'm not sure how I feel about having just Brett without pedio and lacto, it's unique but not necessarily better.

The palate opens with the brown ale base quite noticeable with cocoa and leather with some nuttiness, as well as a little caramel. The oak comes through mid-palate with a woody character. Vanilla is low, there's a touch of wine as well. The Brett is more pronounced here, with a blend of cheese and some funk. Drying and tannic on the finish with some cocoa, this beer is medium-light in body and has moderate carbonation. The alcohol is pretty well hidden too. Solid stuff, a great first effort.

DefenCorps, Jun 17, 2010
Photo of hardy008
4.25/5  rDev +9.5%
look: 4.5 | smell: 4 | taste: 4.5 | feel: 4 | overall: 4

Dark brown with ruby highlights and two fingers of a creamy tan head with good retention and nice lacing. The aroma has Brett, oak, pineapple, and vanilla. It is tough to pick up anything else, given how strong the smell of Brett is.

The taste is Oak, roasted malt, chocolate, Brett, pineapple, alcohol, and vanilla. An interesting combination, and quite good. The flavor is both sweet and tart, which gives it a nice complex flavor.

A little past medium bodied, medium carbonation, with the alcohol being somewhat detectable, but not real hot. This is a nice beer, easy to drink.

hardy008, Jun 16, 2010
Photo of jjanega08
4.28/5  rDev +10.3%
look: 4 | smell: 4 | taste: 4.5 | feel: 4.5 | overall: 4

A= The pour is a nice dark amber color with a huge head on it. The head is about four fingers high. The retention is great on it and the lacing is also pretty nice.

S= A really nice mixture of sweet and sour. I swear it almost smells like sweet and sour sauce if ti weren't for the definate funky brett character. There is a cherry sweetness that sort of flows into a sour note. There is a good amount of oak in it as well with a little vanilla. There is no alcohol present.

T= Interesting! The beer hits your tongue a little sour at first. It then sort of turns into a sweet brown ale taste. There is actually a little roast that I get out of the later part of the beer. The finish is a little sour and a little sweet. There is also a funky aspect to it. Really unique one of the most unique beers I've ever tasted. There is a nice cherry aspect to it as well as some nice oak. Possibly a little vanilla in it.

M= A nice amount of carbonation. Not over carbonated at all with a nice dryness in the finish.

D= Wow. This beer is different thats for sure. This beer makes me happy odells came to MN. I'm happy I got a few of these to toss in the closet so I can see what happens with time. This beer is in it's own class.

jjanega08, Jun 16, 2010
Photo of BARFLYB
3.9/5  rDev +0.5%
look: 4 | smell: 3.5 | taste: 4 | feel: 4 | overall: 4

Bottle into a snifter at Capone's for a Philly Beer Week O'Dell's event. I love this city and da burbs.

Looks black in the middle with some dark shoe polish brown towards the edges. Big thich sheet of bright white head on top with tightness, small streaks down the glass. Smell is kinda wild, kinda fruity and very malty. The malt is up there, kinda sweet, very large. Getting some brett funk but not much, some other wild yeast maybe. Some barns including horses. Chocolate, caramel, faint nuttiness. Taste is muted with the sour/tartness under all that malt and accompioning ingredients. Some underwhelming funk with high malts and dark fruit including plum, apple. Alot of dark red grapes imparting a vinious nature. Some chocolate, werther's originals. Some baked bread and dfark fruits at the end. Feel is malty and winey with a slight hotness, small on the carb. A coating beer that is not all that sour, just small funk qualities. I like this beer but I dont love it. Good for a gander.

BARFLYB, Jun 15, 2010
Photo of regspeir
3.43/5  rDev -11.6%
look: 4 | smell: 3.5 | taste: 3.5 | feel: 3.5 | overall: 3

bottle into a snifter @ Capone's
Poured a dark reddish-brown with a tan two-finger head. Lacing was thinner than expected but with good retention. Nose was dark fruit, vanilla, brett, oak, some funk and boozy. Taste was dark fruit, cherries, some vanilla and defintely some mildly sour, fruity back. There is some hint of cocoa. Mouthfeel is on the thinner side, not much carbonation and warming on the finish. I love this brewer but this was not a personal favorite. The funkiness and alcohol overwhelmed for me, although I will definitely try this again to be sure.

regspeir, Jun 14, 2010
Photo of philbe311
3.85/5  rDev -0.8%
look: 4.5 | smell: 5 | taste: 3.5 | feel: 3.5 | overall: 3.5

From a bottle at Capone's during Philly Beer Week

A - A fingers worth of slightly off white head shows modest retention before leaving a thick ring of foam around the edges of the snifter and a thin veil of lace in the center... The darkest of brown colors... Some slight carbonation can be sign at the top of the glass especially when slightly agitated side to side... A slight bit of light leaks in through the top of the glass...

S - AN outstanding aroma... The brettanomyces tingle the senses... Touches of oak and vanilla... Light touches of dark fruit... A delectable mix of sour and slightly sweet...

T -A subdued sourness permeates... Touches of vanilla... Some malty undertones... A touch of oak...

M - An excellent beer until we get to this category... A little to fizzy for my liking... Also a bit on the thin side... Medium bodied... A tad on the chalky side...

D - The 10% ABV is hidden in no way what so ever... The mouthfeel and drinkable take a little away from this otherwise stellar offering and my introduction to Odell... A solid beer that I recommend trying and that I wouldn't shy away from in the future, but not a must have by any stretch of the imagination...

philbe311, Jun 11, 2010
Photo of oglmcdgl
4.38/5  rDev +12.9%
look: 5 | smell: 4 | taste: 4.5 | feel: 4 | overall: 4.5

Bottle poured out in snifters at capones.

A- huge billowy three fingers of creamy tan head with the lasting power to impress. Dark red brown in color.

S- spicy and funky with a nice roasty malt and an interesting fruitiness.

T- rich and malty up front then the wild kicks in. Dark malts with chocolate and dark bread nice roast. Toasted nuts and a hint of coffee. Then a total turn around with funky yeast and sour wood. Mild tartness with some sour grapes and under ripe berries.

M- rich and creamy with a medium to a bit more in body and a perfect carb.

D- wow for 10 abv on a wild its amazingly drinkable. I've never had a wild ale like this and that's why I love wild ales no two are alike.

oglmcdgl, Jun 11, 2010
Photo of Clarkbar
4.68/5  rDev +20.6%
look: 4.5 | smell: 4 | taste: 5 | feel: 4 | overall: 5

Great brew served in a tulip on tap. I would second the comments about being surprised by aroma, drinkability and desire to order another. I would disagree with the comments about the ABV being obvious, on the contrary seemed rather integrated. Compared to the aromas of a lambic (where I was preparing myself) and what was in the glass it was a great brew with dark oak, coco/chocolate, spices. I didn't rate the smell as high because the aroma and taste were on opposite ends of the spectrum. I'm intrigued by the ability to make that happen, but can't go 5 because I like the aromas to prep my tongue for what's next. Finish was great - definitely lasting and styled close to a porter or stout for my palate.

Clarkbar, Jun 11, 2010
Photo of bort11
3.75/5  rDev -3.4%
look: 4.5 | smell: 3.5 | taste: 3.5 | feel: 4.5 | overall: 4

750 ml corked bottle poured into a Karmeliet goblet. Large and chunky tan head takes forever to settle. That leaves a foamy whipped cream cap on the surface. Body color is a dense murky brown. With a tilt of the glass you can see a little bit of light around the edges and underneath the foam.

Smell starts off with a mild brett-y funk and then moves to a smoky malt. Mild vanilla and and pitted fruit aromas come in from the barrel aging. I get some chocolate malt sweetness.

Mouthfeel is a sticky full body with a mild fuzzy carbonation. A little slick in the finish. A lot of complicated flavors balance each other out to make an approachable flavor.

bort11, Jun 08, 2010
Photo of BretSikkink
3.93/5  rDev +1.3%
look: 4.5 | smell: 4 | taste: 4 | feel: 4 | overall: 3.5

I was surprised by the dark brown, almost black color. Tanned head is terrifically soft and foamy - dare I say Belgianesque. Not quite there in terms of the rockiness and pitting, but a really nice American take on the tall head. Lacing is magnificent.

Aromas of sour Brett, esters, and oak are quite up front. Some notes of darker malt are back there as well, like a note of sweet Bourbon, and a slight astringency of burnt grain. Booze is present but not as overpowering as others have said.

Seems like there are two beers in my glass. One is a sweet, Belgian-style dark ale with dark, ripe fruits and a hint of Brett yeasts. It would be a good beer (if betraying way more of the alcohol presence than the best Belgians), but there is also a classic American drive here to Take It Further. Hence, we've got a mahogany brown ale with hints of stout going on as well. Roasted coffee beans mingle with some toast notes, and they've been all mashed up into the Bourbon-vanilla-oak action going on.

Carbonation is right on the money - a little thick-like but what the hell. It's a big ass beer! Finish is full, but the bubbles keep it from wearing out its welcome in the form of hot hot heat and sticky, syrupy malts. The complexity is there, my interest is there. Very well done on a lot of fronts.

Call me crazy, but I say ramp up the wild yeasts a little bit. Not much, just a hair, to thin things out and keep the syrupy mouthfeel is check. Is that criticism? No. Just one person's idea of how to make a great beer even better. Job well done, Odell.

BretSikkink, Jun 02, 2010
Photo of melliott2811
4.35/5  rDev +12.1%
look: 4.5 | smell: 4 | taste: 4.5 | feel: 4 | overall: 4.5

Saboteur Brett Barrel Brown Ale

"Intense earthy undertones. And notes of vanilla and pineapple come together with a sour silhouette. Aged in American oak barrels."

My second (third?) tasting of this beer. First was on tap in sampling glass. This review is of 22oz bottle poured into SanTan brewing specialty glass.

A: Thick, dark pour with an inch of smooth creamy head that sits atop the beer through the duration of the tasting, accenting the rich mahogany color of the beer and goading you into taking another sip.

S: The sweet aroma of this beer wafts out as the cork is removed from the bottle, hitting you with fruity notes from the pineapple. Once in the glass, the fruitiness no longer overpowers you and the oak comes into play along with the caramel malts.

T: The vanilla was not prominent for me in aroma, but comes into play when tasting. I'm glad it sits more in the background; too many beers these days overwhelm with vanilla if they deign to use it. Sourness of the Brett blends with the pineapple and oak to give a different type of sourness and to mask the 10% alcohol (yeah, I think the booze barrels actually help hide the alcohol of this one). As you swallow the beer, the sourness slowly follows, trickling down your throat and leaving you with a mellow dark malt & vanilla flavor.

M: The intriguing flavor profile and medium body combine with just the right tingle of carbonation to provide a well-rounded mouth feel. Leaves me feeling a little boozy, but that is understandable as the beer has high ABV and lingers on the tongue for a moment after swallowing.

D: By far my favorite offering from Odell. Wonderful color and flavor arouse the senses and expand the palette. Not a typical beer. Good for long sessions as well as samplings and lunch/dinner pairings. I don't agree with pairing with cheese though.

melliott2811, Jun 01, 2010
Photo of womencantsail
4.22/5  rDev +8.8%
look: 4 | smell: 4 | taste: 4.5 | feel: 4 | overall: 4

Thanks to LtDan for sharing this one at the Bruery 2nd Anniversary.

A: The pour is a dark brown color with some reddish highlights and a tan head.

S: A pleasant and mild tartness with a somewhat substantial funk. A solid fruit and sweet malt presence as well, which is interesting.

T: The tartness is in the form of fruits, perhaps cherries, and provides a nice counterpoint to the sweetness of the base beer. There are some barrel and booze notes, which is odd for a wild beer, but not off-putting.

M: The body is medium with plentiful carbonation and a somewhat dry finish and a touch of warmth.

D: A really nice beer, and one that seemed kind of like it could go either way. I'd be interested to see how this one ages.

womencantsail, May 25, 2010
Photo of Bitterbill
4.25/5  rDev +9.5%
look: 4.5 | smell: 4 | taste: 4.5 | feel: 4 | overall: 4

750ml corked and caged bottle purchased in Ft Collins for $12.99

The cork came out easy but there's a huge pop after that so no worries.

It pours a very dark brown with reddish hues and a 1 finger head of offwhite foam. The foam retention is very good and the lacing is exceptional.

The smell is all Brettanomyces...lots of funk and a bit of sour, don't ya know. ;^) I'm trying to get some of the base brown ale out of it but I can't. Hopefully the taste is more complex, at least to *my* nose, which is far from perfect.

The taste is big and quite the abv bomb. Whoah. Gotta get past it and judge the beer itself.

The Brett influence is right in my face when I start off and then I can taste some Brown ale goodness with a bit of roast and chocolate, and the wild part comes in again with some slightly to moderately sour notes that I guess is pineapple like. It varies during each sip. Still can't get over the alcohol and the vanilla flavour seems to accentuate it. Sorry.

Medium bodied with the same for the carbonation. I'm not too fond of the overall mouthfeel. It's kind of sticky.

Drinkability? In my face alcohol is a real culprit here and in no way, as it is now, is this brew a 5 star drinker or even a 4 star. Cellaring could change the whole scenario. That being said, I don't mind spending an hour or more sipping on a brew that doesn't hold back on the tasty flavours that this brings to the table. No regrets on giving this one a go.

Edit: I found this in town and picked up a couple of bottles. I just finished one so I thought I'd comment on my second sampling.

First off, the alcohol, though there, wasn't nearly as in my face as I described originally. Some warming after the swallow, that's all. I also seemed to enjoy the complex flavours more and enjoyed the vanilla and less "explosiveness" of the Brett. I don't know what kind of mood or what I was in with the first bottle but my second go turned out to be a very pleasing session. I'm gonna have to change my scores accordingly. This is an excellent brew.

Bitterbill, May 20, 2010
Photo of riored4v
4.33/5  rDev +11.6%
look: 4 | smell: 4.5 | taste: 4.5 | feel: 4 | overall: 4

Reviewed on 5/8/10

Poured into a snifter. Dark brown body with hints of ruby. 3/4 finger tan head that faded to a thin layer.

Smell was slightly toasty/nutty with a good amount of cherry. Some chocolate and mild dark fruit tartness. Brett and dark malts blended great.

Taste is very similar to aroma. Nice chocolateness, toastiness backed with a good cherry tartness. Sublty hints of vanilla. Nice maltiness but balanced bitterness in finish.

Mouthfeel was a medium body, medium/low carbonation with a mildly sticky finish.

Drinkability was good. Slightly sticky but overall very drinkable and no signs of ABV.

riored4v, May 16, 2010
Photo of Haybeerman
4.35/5  rDev +12.1%
look: 4.5 | smell: 4.5 | taste: 4.5 | feel: 4 | overall: 4

A: Dark brown; almost black. Poured a 2 finger tan that dissipated to a half finger cap. Lots of sticky lace.

S: A lot going on here. Yeast esters, ooak, bourbon. Burnt toast and alcohol and yeaty funk.

T: Sweet then sour. Oak and alcohol. Very comples and a lot going on here too. Toasted malts like a brown ale, yeast notes like a wild alre and bitter in the finish for some stab at balance.

M: Medium body. Ample carbonation. Warming and dry.

D: Very interesting, very complex. Definitely a sipper, but I can see keeping a bottle aroiund for beer geeks.

Haybeerman, May 15, 2010
Photo of bigbelcher
3.58/5  rDev -7.7%
look: 4 | smell: 3.5 | taste: 3.5 | feel: 4 | overall: 3.5

Unusal beer. Supposed to be a brettanomyces beer but the flavors and aromas of brett were muted. Actually somewhat sour like from Lactobacillus. Head was thick and creamy. Kind of like a Belgian farmhouse ale but something just wasn't balanced with the beer. Was not my favorite of the night by far.

bigbelcher, May 15, 2010
Photo of oakbluff
2.9/5  rDev -25.3%
look: 3 | smell: 3 | taste: 3 | feel: 3 | overall: 2.5

Sampled on draft- muddled brown colour with minimal head and lacing. Nose- musty, nutty. Taste- brett flavour profile is strong, but doesn't mix well with the boozy hotness of the underlying beer. The alcohol heat was overpowering any malt subtleties. Some figs, nuts and caramel. A messy beer.

oakbluff, May 08, 2010
Photo of CrossFitAlex
4.8/5  rDev +23.7%
look: 5 | smell: 4.5 | taste: 5 | feel: 4 | overall: 5

I had this at The Muddy Pig in Saint Paul, MN.

The beer is a dark brown color with almost no light penetration. A beautiful beer.

Tasting notes - Nutty. Pineapple and fruity nose. Low carbonation; a decent sour bite. Filling with good mouthfeel. Alcohol is present. Nutty flavors and sour brettanomyces balance great! Farmhouse feel.

CrossFitAlex, May 08, 2010
Photo of Phelps
4.22/5  rDev +8.8%
look: 4.5 | smell: 4.5 | taste: 4 | feel: 4 | overall: 4.5

Saboteur at first appears an inky brown with no light penetration. A hold to the overhead lamp, however, reveals some beauty: hues of deep amber, scarlet and black coffee shift and shimmer. A pillowy khaki head crowns the beer, receding ever so slowly and leaving thick trails of lace reminiscent of an ant farm. Has more bubbly effervescence than I've ever seen in a beer. It's a party in there.

Sour brett rules the nose, but it's balanced by an enticing sweetness. Notes of honey, rye bread and sauerkraut all make appearances, paired with burnt sugar and some orange citrusy hops. Remarkable.

So many brewers of sours let the funk take over the beer, but the flavors here are dialed in to perfection. Funky yet roasty, sour yet sugary. Bready and caramel sweet, with a roasted malt character imparting notes of dark chocolate at first, followed by the tartness of cherries and dark fruits. Very nice.

Feel is the slightest notch beneath medium. Carbonation is understated and perfect. A slight alcohol burn flames through the nostrils and down the throat.

I first tried Saboteur at a recent Odell beer flight, and it was far and away my favorite offering. I immediately bought a bottle. A supremely satisfying sour, and one I'll seek out wherever I can.

Phelps, May 06, 2010
Saboteur from Odell Brewing Company
87 out of 100 based on 280 ratings.