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La Vache Folle Double IPA - Columbus - Microbrasserie Charlevoix

Not Rated.
La Vache Folle Double IPA - ColumbusLa Vache Folle Double IPA - Columbus

Educational use only; do not reuse.
BA SCORE
85
very good

42 Ratings
THE BROS
-
no score

(send 'em beer!)
Ratings: 42
Reviews: 31
rAvg: 3.79
pDev: 11.08%
Wants: 1
Gots: 3 | FT: 0
Brewed by:
Microbrasserie Charlevoix visit their website
Quebec, Canada

Style | ABV
American Double / Imperial IPA |  9.00% ABV

Availability: Rotating

Notes & Commercial Description:
Beer added by: flipper2gv on 08-30-2010

No notes at this time.
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Ratings: 42 | Reviews: 31 | Display Reviews Only:
Photo of mmurphy525
2.75/5  rDev -27.4%

Photo of ygtbsm94
3/5  rDev -20.8%

Photo of kelvarnsen
3/5  rDev -20.8%

Photo of kwjd
3.26/5  rDev -14%
look: 4 | smell: 3 | taste: 3 | feel: 4 | overall: 3.5

Sammy's bottle. Pours a copper-orange colour with thin white head. Some lacing on the glass. Mild herbal and pine hops with some type of funky aroma going on. This funk doesn't totally distract from the beer, though I wish it wasn't there. Still has a nice bitterness to it. Nice carbonation level.

Photo of SFLpunk
3.31/5  rDev -12.7%
look: 4 | smell: 3 | taste: 3.5 | feel: 3.5 | overall: 3

Thanks to freud for this one!

.5L brown glass pry-top bottle.

Pours a crystal-clear amber orange with thin sticky white head that leaves lots of spotting. Nose is rather muted with some faint earthy notes and a little lemon zest. Not very fragrant.

Palate is fat and sweet with some caramel and then the hops slide in all casual-like. Earthy and gritty. Not super bitter, but somewhat in a dried herbs fashion. Something like anise or fennel and a little cooling sensation. Moderate length finish. Last sip reminds me of real-brewed sweet tea.

A decent IIPA and really well balanced for having only one type of hop.

Photo of Sammy
3.43/5  rDev -9.5%
look: 3.5 | smell: 3 | taste: 3.5 | feel: 4 | overall: 3.5

Bottle from gift four-pack, the only unique one. Lacey big soapy head on some yellow body. No aroma to speak of. Sourish initially, and then the hops build up. High IBU, its orangey and bitter, I disregard the funkiness to experience the bitterness, which is there with the other elements.

Photo of hopsolutely
3.46/5  rDev -8.7%
look: 4 | smell: 3 | taste: 3.5 | feel: 4 | overall: 3.5

Although the bottle was only purchased (without seeing it) last week, it was bottled 11/24/11 and hasn't aged well. That surprised me, given its 9% ABV.

Pours a dusty but bright orange with impressive residual lacing. Mouthfeel is also unexpectedly light, without the heavy oiliness I'd anticipated at this high ABV. Disappointing aroma of sweet, faded hops with a tone of mustiness. Aged hops also in the initial malt sweetness, with little of the tropical fruit elements I expected from a Columbus brew. Pleasantly bitter finish that lingers for an impressive length of time and minimal alcohol burn.

Would certainly be happy to try any future batches, but would keep a close eye on the freshness of the bottle.

Photo of IronDjinn
3.48/5  rDev -8.2%
look: 4 | smell: 3.5 | taste: 3.5 | feel: 4 | overall: 3

From a 500 ml brown bottle. Pours out a hazed rustic copper/deep amber hue, frothy merrengue-like off-white head with great retention. Thick rings of lacing.

Sweet sugary melanoidin malt prominant in the aroma, lemon and grapefruit citrus from the hops. Comes across as overtly sweet and sugary.

That sugary melanoidin sweetness carries over into the flavour providing an odd balance farther towards the malt side of things. Once again, lemon and grapefruit from the hops rise on the finish and try their best to cut through the malty sweetness.

Nice medium-full mouthfeel, slick and smooth mouthfeel, with moderate carbonation but good body.

Not up to the same par as the former offerings, this one is a runaway train full of sugary caramalt sweetness, this almost seems a bit underfermented and worty, or more akin to an Old Ale, but all in all seems underhopped for the style. If a follow-up bottle proves me wrong I'll adjust my review accordingly.

Photo of Viggo
3.48/5  rDev -8.2%
look: 4.5 | smell: 4 | taste: 3 | feel: 3.5 | overall: 3.5

500 ml bottle, thanks to grub for sharing.

Pours a clear amber/orange, very bright and fiery, thick white head forms and slowly settles down to a pretty thick ring and layer around the glass, huge lace ring sticks, big sheets on the glass, looks good.

Smell is neat, big pineapple notes, a bit of grapefruit, very tropical, some alcohol, lightly spicy, a touch of caramel sweetness, a bit sugary, lightly solventy, but some nice tropical fruit notes.

Taste is similar, very fruity, a bit of grapefruit and some pineapple juice, a touch of pininess, quite sweet, almost a sherry like sweetness, but still pretty boozy and not a whole lot going on in the flavour, solid bitterness, pretty balanced.

Mouthfeel is medium bodied with low to medium carbonation. Not bad, but was expecting more out of this one I think. Thanks Russ!

Photo of Phyl21ca
3.5/5  rDev -7.7%
look: 3.5 | smell: 3.5 | taste: 3.5 | feel: 3.5 | overall: 3.5

Bottle: Poured a medium amber color ale with a large foamy head with good retention and some lacing. Aroma consists of fruity ester with a bitter edge. Taste is also a mix of weird fruity hops with a bitter finish. Some floral notes are apparent though not as dominant as expected. Body is about average with OK carbonation. Interesting experiment though this hops is better as a complement then standing by itself.

Photo of bostonryan
3.5/5  rDev -7.7%

Photo of fostachild
3.5/5  rDev -7.7%

Photo of Derek
3.56/5  rDev -6.1%
look: 4.5 | smell: 3.5 | taste: 3.5 | feel: 3.5 | overall: 3.5

Bottled Nov 24, 2011 so there's over 6 months age on this one.

a: Copper-bronze with a white head, good retention & lace.

S: Spearmint, dried pine needles and grass with hints of sponge toffee and tropical fruit.

T: Surprising sweetness pushing this towards the blonde barleywine category. Herbal and minty, lots of toffee, candied pineapple and mango, restrained bitterness, alcohol is well-hidden.

M: Moderate to full body has some residual sweetness and hop acidity.

O: Not as hop-forward or bitter as I had anticipated, but a pleasant sipper.

Photo of tbeckett
3.56/5  rDev -6.1%
look: 4.5 | smell: 3.5 | taste: 3.5 | feel: 3.5 | overall: 3.5

Bottle from Broue HAHA. Bottled November 24, consumed December 28. From notes.

A - Cpoured copper with great carbonation. Three fingers of eggshell head appeared quite thick and left good rings of lace with one finger of retention.

S - Grapefruit, gentle malt, lot's of tropical fruit.

T - Tropical fruit, a little dull compared to the aroma, caramel, booze. Maybe mango and grapefruit too.

M - Good carbonation, medium to full body and good bitterness.

O/D - An alright DIPA. One of the better of the series but still not all that impressive. Drinkable and worth a try if you like the style, but not worth a second.

Photo of eat
3.57/5  rDev -5.8%
look: 3.5 | smell: 4 | taste: 3.5 | feel: 3 | overall: 3.5

Bottled August 4 and consumed September 23; could be fresher but not too bad. A thick initial head fades fairly quickly to a bubbly, cream-white cover which presents some lacing. The body is fairly clear and a beautiful, glowing copper in colour. I expect better head from Charlevoix. The pour itself also looks a little thin and apple juice-like.

Buttery caramel hits the nose first, followed by flowers, sweet pineapple, tangerine and light pine. The nose isn't jumping out as I like to find with a good double IPA but the smell is very nice.

I had seen complaints about some of the others from this series for being too sweet but this one is genuinely so. Borderline-cloying candy malt dominates with an odd hop variety peeking out beneath. Columbus seems a touch soapy, with bitter lime and grapefruit rind. The 80 IBUs attempt to tone down the sweetness but end up bashed over the head by the aggressive sugary malt.

From what I remember of the others, Columbus presents the worst mouthfeel so far of Charlevoix's single-hop double IPA series. Simultaneously too thin and over-carbonated (with lots of fizzy feeling on the tongue), it really feels like a product of a lesser brewery. Fizzy bubbles rest on the back of the tongue for a while after swallowing along with a slight drying.

Maybe I would have rated this beer higher if I didn't know what Charlevoix is capable of. I'm almost thinking something went a little wrong with this one; I can't say it lives up to their reputation. I would like to say, if nothing else, this beer is a good vehicle to highlight Columbus hops but they end up mostly-buried under all the sweet maltiness. Hopefully they rethink the malt bill for the next round. If you're looking to feature a hop variety, the best way to accomplish this is not to present it through a wall of sugary malt. Buy one if you're trying to keep up with this series. Otherwise, don't worry about it.

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

500ml bottle poured into a pint glass

Appearance - The beer pours a crystal clear amber colour with a nice size frothy and fizzy beige head. There is a below average amount of carbonation showing. There is also some decent lacing and the head lasted for a short while.

Smell - I can smell hops, a grassiness, floral notes, and a honey sweetness.

Taste & Mouth - the beer has a decent mouth feel, not a whole lot of carbonation - but it feels creamy and velvety. First thing I can taste is hops, but then the beer gets very sweet. It's almost too sweet. It has a big time honey and sugar flavour. The hops bitterness is still there, it's just mixed in with all the sweetness. I can't taste the alcohol which is good considering it's 9% - but I can't get past the sweetness. I imagine the beer must clock in with an insane amount of calories to taste like it does. Also present is a caramel taste and some malts.

Drink - If only it was toned down a little in the sugar department - this might be a pretty good beer. Maybe it will appeal to some, but it isn't for me.

Photo of Seanstoppable
3.61/5  rDev -4.7%
look: 4.5 | smell: 3.5 | taste: 3.5 | feel: 4 | overall: 3.5

One of the brewers from Charlevoix visited Halifax for our summer beer festival. I was thanking him for La Vache Folle Amarillo, and he told me that if I had enjoyed that one, I should realy try to get a bottle or two of the new Columbus. Finally, after a few months I have a bottle in my hands and get to find out if it lives up to my now inflated expectations.

Bottle on date of August 4th, 2010.

Pours a nice clear copper-amber color with several fingers of thick white head. Lots of sticky lacing left on the glass.

Sweet caramel flavor is dominant in the nose. Some floral scents and a light citrus are also present.

Malt flavor is definitely present in the taste, but there is a nice hop bitterness. Not quite grapefruit in character, and just shy of an intense hop profile. A slight earthiness to the overall flavor.

Overall a good beer. Not great, like the Amarillo was, and certainly not living up to my expectations, but still a good beer nonetheless.

Photo of biboergosum
3.65/5  rDev -3.7%
look: 4 | smell: 4 | taste: 3.5 | feel: 3.5 | overall: 3.5

Another hop-specific offering from an increasingly favorite brewer of mine from la Belle Province...

This beer pours a clear medium golden copper hue, with two beefy fingers of dense foamy pale beige head, which leaves a nice consistent curtain of lace around the glass as it recedes. It smells of ethereal floral hops, tropical fruit, and a reserved butterscotch/caramel sweetness. The taste is a twin assault to the senses of sweet candied pineapple, sugar cane, and caramel malt, closely followed by the bitter, but still fruity, pine and citrus hops. A latent dose of booziness just adds to the intensity of this doozy of a DIPA. The carbonation is pretty muffled, the body medium weight, unctuous, moderately smooth, a bit astringent, and warm. It finishes sweet and sugary, the fruity hops and mild alcohol incapable of stemming the saccharine tide.

Well, this DIPA sure leans toward the malt side of things, the Columbus hops even playing a small role in that. Still well made, but the overall skew, and consequent unleashing of alcohol renders this iteration as more of a curio than the solid balanced drinkers of its recent brethren.

Photo of Caudalie
3.65/5  rDev -3.7%
look: 4 | smell: 4 | taste: 3.5 | feel: 3.5 | overall: 3.5

From a 500ml bottle

Red amber color with a huge foam head. Nice appearance, quite appealing.

Nose with floral, and fruity aromas, evoking citrus, and exotic fruits. Pretty nice.

Good mouthfeel, but a bit sweet. Nice hoppiness and a good, lenghty bitter finish. Pretty good.

Photo of northof60hops
3.66/5  rDev -3.4%
look: 3.75 | smell: 3.25 | taste: 3.75 | feel: 4 | overall: 3.75

Photo of joemcgrath27
3.68/5  rDev -2.9%
look: 4.5 | smell: 4 | taste: 3.5 | feel: 3.5 | overall: 3.5

A - clear copper, tall head, great retention with sticky lacing up the glass
S - strong perfume and pine, sweet fruity note, light woody hint with some alcohol present
T - perfumy and pine hops, greater focus on malts than expected with sweet caramel and roasty/woody flavours, along with some definite fruity syrup and alcohol sweetness
M - full mouth tang with a definite alcohol bite
D - not the hop bomb I was expecting and wanting in a DIPA, the heavier malt and fruity flavours were interesting, the alcohol was a little intrusive, an interesting beer that is worth testing for yourself

Photo of JonnyBeers
3.75/5  rDev -1.1%

Photo of oldp0rt
3.75/5  rDev -1.1%

Photo of grub
3.81/5  rDev +0.5%
look: 4.5 | smell: 3.5 | taste: 4 | feel: 4 | overall: 3.5

got this one in a recent trade with freud. thanks fred!

500ml bottle. sampled nov 13/2010.

pours crystal clear reddish orange with a big fluffy cream coloured head. the head drops slowly and leaves plenty of lace as it falls.

aroma is nice. light alcohol. caramel and a bit of toffee. strong herbal and slightly spicy character. bit of minty character. white bread and cracker.

taste is good. big caramel and toffee character. whole wheat bread and cracker. hint of biscuit. right around medium bitterness level, but far less harsh than i usually expect from columbus. minty and herbal/spicy character. lightly warming alcohol.

mouthfeel is good. just over medium body. medium carbonation level.

drinkability is nice. alcohol is a touch warm. i expected more harshness from the columbus, at least in the bittering character and that was missed. it leans a little toward malty character, but that could be because it's been a couple of months since release. otherwise it was a tasty dipa.

Photo of CliffBrake
3.81/5  rDev +0.5%
look: 4.5 | smell: 3.5 | taste: 4 | feel: 4 | overall: 3.5

bottled on 22 Nov 2011 at 10:35. Cudos for clearly labeling the bottle date (including the time!). Unfortunately I did not notice this when I was shopping. Purchased on 26 Feb 2012 and consumed on 1 March.

Crystal bright medium amber color with a good rocky head. Great head retention and tons of sticky lacing on the glass. Really a remarkable head for the style/abv.

A bit of citrus over a caramel and toast aroma. Aroma is somewhat subdued. The flavor follows suit. Big toasted bread flavor with a cap of citrus and floral hops. I can't help but think the hops may have faded on this one. Alcohol shows toward the mildly bitter finish.

Round juicy mouthcoating feel reminds me that this is a big 9% abv.

I will try this beer again, if I come across a fresher bottle. With a little more hop presence, I think this could stand among the better DIPA's at this strength.

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La Vache Folle Double IPA - Columbus from Microbrasserie Charlevoix
85 out of 100 based on 42 ratings.