1. American Craft Beer Fest returns to Boston on May 29 & 30, featuring 640+ beers from 140+ brewers. Tickets are on sale now.

La Tache - The Ale Apothecary

Not Rated.
La TacheLa Tache

Educational use only; do not reuse.
BA SCORE
94
outstanding

194 Ratings
THE BROS
-
no score

(send 'em beer!)
Ratings: 194
Reviews: 29
rAvg: 4.23
pDev: 8.27%
Wants: 124
Gots: 32 | FT: 6
Brewed by:
The Ale Apothecary visit their website
Oregon, United States

Style | ABV
American Wild Ale |  8.50% ABV

Availability: Rotating

Notes & Commercial Description:
Beer added by: JohnGalt1 on 07-30-2012

No notes at this time.
View: Beers (7) | Events
Beer: Ratings & Reviews
to view more.
Ratings: 194 | Reviews: 29
Reviews by TheBungyo:
Photo of TheBungyo
4.5/5  rDev +6.4%
look: 4.5 | smell: 4.5 | taste: 4.5 | feel: 4.5 | overall: 4.5

The first thing I noticed when pouring this beer was the blast of funk that kicked my face like Jet Li. Well ... Jet Li if he were homeless and had just stepped in a colossal cow pie. That may sound bad but if you fiend for the funk like I do then you know it aint a bad thing.

This pours the color of a winter beam of sun. Pale yellow anemic sunshine. Carbonation is very active and I have to pour very gently to avoid a head volcano. It settles into a rocky surface, full of peaks and valleys. Lovely.

The nose is full of barnyard funk and once it opens up a bit more and I get a bit of lemon rind, touch of oak, candy and the faintest hint of soap. In a sense, it's sort of simple with the funk being so upfront but there's definite beauty in the simplicity.

Initially the carbonation was furiously paced but after about thirty minutes settled down greatly. It does stay nice and dry throughout though, which I love. I taste citrusy fruits, like lemons, a dash of oak mingled with funkiness that gives the impression of a tart onslaught that never quite arrives. This beer is interesting enough to pair with just about anything I would imagine. It seems bold enough to stand by the side of nearly any dish but not so bold that it would steal the show. Would love to try this with some La Serena cheese (raw sheeps milk cheese).

Great beer. A big thank you to Paul for welcoming my girlfriend and myself into his brewery and taking the time to talk shop with us. We love what you're doing!

More User Reviews:
Photo of dirtylou
4.34/5  rDev +2.6%
look: 4.5 | smell: 4.25 | taste: 4.25 | feel: 4.5 | overall: 4.5

750ml bottle split

12/21/12

Golden-yellow body, heavy carbonation. Another really lovely beer from the Ale Apothecary - self described as a 'table sour', dry hopped during its stay in oak barrels. Light, funk, lots of bright lemon citrus, hop juice, a bit acidic, sharp carbonation. It's a shame this stuff is so expensive (approaching Cascade levels), because these guys make wonderful beer with fantastic branding.

Photo of Alieniloquium
3.99/5  rDev -5.7%
look: 4.25 | smell: 4 | taste: 4 | feel: 3.75 | overall: 4

750 mL bottle poured into a snifter.

Appearance - Golden yellow body. Nice white head. Great surface foam and retention.

Smell - Wine barrel is strong. Bready malts. Slightly hoppy. More hoppy than I expected.

Taste - Wine barrel is strong here too, but sweet pale malts and a bready malt character that dominates. Hoppy flavor blends well. Interesting merger of styles.

Mouthfeel - A touch too sweet. Well carbonated.

Overall - Another interesting offering from Ale Apothecary. Similar to Sahalie, maybe less crazy.

Photo of beerloverofbham
4.25/5  rDev +0.5%
look: 4 | smell: 4 | taste: 4.25 | feel: 5 | overall: 4.25

A: Pours the color of--dare I say it--a tasteless American macro-lager, but with a frothy, continuous pure white head. The carbonation is very visible.
S: Pretty subtle aromas. Some grapefruit, and melon, but with a little bit of musty . Smells similar to a Berliner Weisse, but with less lacto and wheat scents up front.
T: Immediately, I pick up lemon verbena and sticky honeydew melon, with some white wine, and finishes with oak. Rolling it around my mouth on another sip, I notice some almost indistinguishable notes of Cascade hops, some wheat and more of the lactic acidity.
M: Excellent mouthfeel. Lingering effervescence.
O: An exceptional wild ale from a brewery that seriously knows what they're doing with both spontaneous fermentation and oak barrels. This bottle was opened exactly six months after the bottling date. I'd be curious to know what younger and older versions of this would taste like. Very subtle, but highly recommended. I look forward to tasting later vintages of all their beers.

Photo of KYGunner
3.98/5  rDev -5.9%
look: 4.5 | smell: 4 | taste: 4 | feel: 3.5 | overall: 4

This pours with a gorgeous color and sprite lively thick foam head. The nose is sour and tart with an earthlike mineral and cherry fruit tone.

The flavor is sour, tart and acidic with huge doses of pear and light touches of Apple. The feel is prickly and a touch high in carbonated bubbling.

Photo of Rutager
4.44/5  rDev +5%
look: 4.25 | smell: 4.5 | taste: 4.5 | feel: 4 | overall: 4.5

Big thank you to Steasy66 for this!!

Appearance. Pours a hazy straw-gold with a finger of white head.

Smell. Floral and funky, sweet hay, light fresh wood, light apples and pears. Very nice.

Taste. Light fruits, apples and peaches, medium-light in the sour dept., some fresh wood, lightly floral, light funk. Again, very nice and no alcohol to be found.

Mouthfeel. Below medium body (a little light), medium-strong carbonation (a little strong).

Overall. Fantastic stuff. Like a sour saison. This brewer really knows his shit. Thanks again Ryan!!!

Photo of JohnGalt1
4.27/5  rDev +0.9%
look: 3.5 | smell: 4 | taste: 4.5 | feel: 4 | overall: 4.5

Sooo.... I am a little bit hesitant adding a new brew/brewery with this pedigree.

reinheitsgematt and I somehow managed to make our way to Ale Apothecary within about a day or two of our same vacation footprint... And Matt opened a La Tache tonight.

No label. Not a cork and cage, instead a champagne knot in red string. Classy for sure, but a huge PITA for folks tying them... I am impressed with the presentation.

The brew pours clear golden.. short lasting white head... decent
lacing with low profile head... nice.

Nose is not "funky" the way most geeks will expect.. instead, a
wonderful lemony/lactic aroma abounds... I get a lite "citrus"
hoppiness, but I could be imagining things... Cascade?

The flavor pretty much mirrors the nose with a nice oaky presence .... Barrel notes maybe? Viognier? Lactic acidity without ever verging on "acidic" ... lemony and very approachable for folks touching base with "wild" ales. Tart and soooo very drinkable. Digging this one very much.

A great summer session sour... just tart enough to guarantee sips, but makes me want another right away.

I loved my little tour around the "Mountain Brewery" .... Besides the winter snow ;-) I cannot imagine a more perfect place to make a dream come true. Badass... Thanks, Paul!!

3.5/4/4.5/4/4.5

Photo of jakewatt135
4.4/5  rDev +4%
look: 4.25 | smell: 4.25 | taste: 4.5 | feel: 4.25 | overall: 4.5

Just a great table sour that would go well with most meals. Champagne like carbonation and complex delicious aroma and flavor.

Photo of Thorpe429
4.62/5  rDev +9.2%
look: 4.25 | smell: 4.75 | taste: 4.5 | feel: 4.75 | overall: 4.75

Thanks to Dave for sharing this. Bottled December 21, 2012.

Just like the Sahalie, body is light yellow and a bit hazy. Good white head and nice retention. The nose has a bit of faint sulfur and cheese underneath very nice wheat. Behind that there's some lemon and faint spice. Flavor is similar with a bit less acidity than the Sahalie, but same wonderful complexity. Body is very light with mild acidity. Super easy drinking.

Again, just wow. I am really impressed.

Photo of HuskyinPDX
4.14/5  rDev -2.1%
look: 4.25 | smell: 4 | taste: 4.25 | feel: 4.25 | overall: 4

Bottle opened on 4.17.13
Batch: Dec 21 2012

A - Pours a hazy light orange with a very active fizzy white head that fades fast.

S - Citrus - lemon, funk, slightly nutty.

T - Tart oakiness, very subtle citrus, buttery wood.

D - Tons of carbonation and very light body.

O - Smells great, but flavors are not quite there. I would let this one age a bit more.

Photo of dar482
3.71/5  rDev -12.3%

The beer is really foamy and out of the bottle is mostly head.

On the palate, it is the same, very overcarbonated. Past that, the beer drinks extremely thin for 8.5%. The fruit qualities are of fresh pear, a bit of apple, grassiness, hints of saison yeast spice. A little floral and funk. Dry, but lacking in flavor on the back end.

Surprisingly disappointing for the hype on this brew.

Photo of draheim
4.5/5  rDev +6.4%
look: 4.5 | smell: 4.5 | taste: 4.5 | feel: 4.5 | overall: 4.5

750mL (bottled 4/10/2014, 7.75% ABV) into a tulip. Pours a slightly hazy pale straw color w/ a big monstrous white head of tiny champagne bubbles typical of a wild ale, with lively, vigorous carbonation.

Aroma is light and tart, with just a touch of grassy, citrusy funk. Very nice and clean.

Taste is citrusy, vinous, bready, tart and bright. Lemons, spices, pear, all finishing with a clean acidity. The perfect level of sweetness to balance the subtle sour character.

Mouthfeel is light and enjoyable, finishes nice and dry.

Overall, this is a truly outstanding beer, one of the best American wild ales I think I've ever had. I could drink this every day if I could afford it. Glad my friends were willing to pick this up for me when they were down in Bend last weekend.

Photo of Pinknuggets
4.28/5  rDev +1.2%
look: 4.25 | smell: 4.25 | taste: 4.25 | feel: 4.5 | overall: 4.25

I was quite surprised when this showed up in VT and a $28 price tag was daunting but I figured if it really is that hard to get why not give it a shot. It does have quite an elegant bottle especially with no caging on the cork just a string but that made it hard to get out.

Bottle to Ommgang oversized wine glass

A:Golden to bright yellow in color with a thick heavy white head. It is semi translucent and somewhat cloudy with lots of bubbles

S: light somewhat funky smell but not too much as there is more of a lemony to grassy smell. There might be a little bit of hops in there too but the first smell is pretty much all that is pungent though not that funky still is pleasant.

T: The sourness is there but it is not puckering in fact totally the opposite, it is lightly tart but not a strong flavor. What it does have is a lot of lemon flavor, but it is much mild then any lemon I have as the flavor is there without the harshness of the sour/tart flavor of a normal lemon (though I usually like that). The finish is a bit yeasty but still quite enjoyable.

M: Light and very easy to drink there is a nice carbonation that really compliments the flavor and reminds me of champagne like feel. It is rather crisp in the beginning and has a feel that like white wine with a lot more bubbles.

O: I liked this beer but not as much as I wanted it too. It has a lot of good flavors and I like the lemon flavors with the wine/champagne flavors but I feel like this should either be a lot more sour and tart or it should be a lot more funky as there isn't much funk here. Its rare so I appreciate that I got to try it especially all the way out here in VT but idk for the price maybe worth making the decision yourself.

Photo of harrymel
4.52/5  rDev +6.9%
look: 4 | smell: 4.5 | taste: 4.75 | feel: 4 | overall: 4.5

Batch 21DEC12
ABV 8.14%

A nice clean lemon yellow with a solid sheet of bone white, super fine foam. Love to watch the solid column of bubbles rising from the center of the glass. Nose carries lemons, tartness, a touch of hay and manure, some hibiscus and some fresh cut grass, as it warms there is a leather and funk. Fucking A. Taste is initially nice and tart - not overly so at all - the tart character is well integrated with a nice earthen bitterness, plenty of lemon flavors, some soil, a bit of mushroom and water cracker. The beer feels light and easy on the palate, maybe a touch undercarbonated or something - although I like the way it feels, I can't help but think it could be better. Another outrageously complex beer from a brewery that reinvigorates my sense of boundaries for what beer is, and can be. Brilliant, artistic, intriguing and layered.

Photo of stakem
3.83/5  rDev -9.5%
look: 4 | smell: 3.5 | taste: 4 | feel: 4 | overall: 3.75

750ml bottle with a date of 12/21/12 poured into a snifter. The brew appears a pale golden yellow color with a big white cap that fades back leaving patchy lace on the glass. A swirl effortlessly revives.

The aroma opens up a little awkward and not that desireable with notes of burnt plastic and strange phenolics. As it breaths, the plastic dissolves a bit and in its place is mostly a lemony lactic character.

The taste is tart and fruity like pear/apple and wheat with a kick of alcohol that feels mildly like perfume. The aroma showcased some real plastic off-character and thankfully that is mostly muted in the taste.

This is a light bodied brew with a modest amount of carbonation. A unique wild that starts off harsh and grows on you as it breaths and opens up.

Photo of UCLABrewN84
3.94/5  rDev -6.9%
look: 3 | smell: 4 | taste: 4 | feel: 4 | overall: 4

Thanks to Tieman for sharing this one at his tasting.

Batch 8/19/12.

Pours a slightly murky yellow with a fizzy off-white head that settles to nothing. Small dots of lace slowly drip into the remaining beer on the drink down. Smell is slightly sour and tart with some malt, grain, and fruity aromas. Taste is much the same with a fruity and slight wood finish. This beer has a good level of carbonation with a crisp mouthfeel. Overall, this is a good beer that is tasty and easy to drink.

Photo of wordemupg
4.5/5  rDev +6.4%
look: 4.25 | smell: 4.75 | taste: 4.5 | feel: 4 | overall: 4.5

750ml bottle corked with string holding back the cork, no cage, I can't recall seeing that before in nearly 2000 reviews, poured into tulip 13/11/13, Dec, 14, 2012 bottle, cheers Liam for sending the bottle

A clear golden yellow with a hint of green, you might have a hard time jamming more bubbles in a glass, a tornado of bubbles barfs off the bottom with streams popping up from everywhere, three fingers of bone white foam has good retention but nothing sticks to the glass

S lots of fruit, green apple, mango, pear, peach and pineapple, a little funk works well with some oak, vinous notes I can't place, Sauv Blanc barrels maybe? intense nose, everything comes in strong, floral notes and more fruit, I could smell this all day, near perfection going on here

T a little grassy with less tropical notes then the nose, mild funk and vinous notes are still doing great things but the nose was a hard act to follow, wood and some foreign spice I can't place for the life of me

M fairly light and airy, almost explodes when it his your tongue, fruity finish with just a little grit

O quite impressive, I can't believe how quickly I devoured this bottle, loads of tropical fruit and white vinous notes mix up with the mellow funk, I need more brews form these guys

I've uncovered a hidden gem and I'm considering a move to Bend with the hope that there's other obscure breweries I've never heard of pumping out this sort of quality. This one hits all the spots, look for these guys and if you find them please set one aside for me.

Photo of anteater
4.11/5  rDev -2.8%
look: 3.75 | smell: 4 | taste: 4.25 | feel: 4.25 | overall: 4

This may be the beer that most closely resembles champagne that I've had. Very pleasant aroma and taste. Kind of like a very like, perfectly balanced saison with less dominant yeast character. Impossibly light mouthfeel. Very unique and tasty.

Photo of msubulldog25
4.28/5  rDev +1.2%
look: 4.25 | smell: 4.25 | taste: 4.25 | feel: 4.5 | overall: 4.25

750 ml bottle, corked and bound with a tied string. Picked this up on a visit to Bend last August, purchased from Paul at AA's tiny brewery after a nearly hour-long "tour" and casual discussion about beer. Opened with a corkscrew and a soft pop on a Saturday night (split with my wife) to a pair of snifters and matched with a lemony cod, broccoli and wild rice dish at home.

Hand stamped date and ABV: "JUL 05 2013" and "8.68"% Alc/Vol

A: Golden pour, a little hazy, a little fizzy, with a sturdy whitish head - about 1/2 finger. Good lacing and an ever-present creamy swirl of film. Steady carbonation, too.

S: Grassy, wet hay and lightly floral notes with a nose-twitching sourness. Doesn't blow you away, neither does it turn you away. Good strength, intriguing.

T: Excellent lemon/lemongrass flavors, a little cake/shortbread. Mild apple/pear tartness, nothing to overpower the malts and prevalent yeastiness.

M: A little spritzy at first, plenty or carbonation and a lingering effervescence. Mellows in the mouth, becoming thicker and grainier by the second. Medium body, a little pasty in the finish.

O: Lovely beer that's all too easy to quaff, given its stealthy ABV. Waiting about 6 months to open this seems about the perfect amount of time, though I'm glad to try plenty more at shorter and longer intervals. Strong recommendation.

Photo of alpineclimber
4.69/5  rDev +10.9%
look: 4.5 | smell: 4.75 | taste: 4.75 | feel: 4.75 | overall: 4.5

Thanks to OakedCanuck for the awesome in person trade this past summer.

A 750ml corked bottle that is bound with string. The cork loudly pops and I anticipate a gusher but the beer stays put. A straw pale yellow brew pours into my glass with a huge frothy white head, crazy carbonation bubbles up from the depths of my glass.

Nose is of pear, sweet grass and tropical fruit

The taste opens up with pear, grassy notes and a slight funk. The taste of Belgian yeast is in the finish.

Overall really good stuff. The taste is fairly delicate with the funk being light. Nice balanced flavours. I want to try the other offerings from this brewery.

Photo of Axnjxn
4.21/5  rDev -0.5%
look: 4 | smell: 4.25 | taste: 4.25 | feel: 4 | overall: 4.25

750ml 7/5/2013 bottling date . into a snifter.

pours a light golden color, big foamy head. tart smell .. yeasty..wow! taste is super sour and just terrific. white grapes and ends super dry. medium bodied with high carbonation.

overall superb!! recommended.

Photo of MasterSki
4.34/5  rDev +2.6%
look: 4.25 | smell: 4.5 | taste: 4.25 | feel: 4.5 | overall: 4.25

Bottle shared by Todd. Thanks! Served in a plastic cup.

A - White foam settles to a solid cap and splotchy lacework. Hazy orange body.

S - Big brett aroma, with loads of tropical funk to it. Notes of lemon, perfume, stone fruits, vinous oak; very saison-esque.

T - The taste is quite similar, but with even more brett character. Dusty, with a slightly medicinal note, but otherwise there are hefty doses of tropical and stone fruits, and a vinous oak character in the finish.

M - Medium-full body, pleasant carbonation, soft texture, and a dry finish. Alcohol is immaculately concealed.

D - Great stuff! Would love to drink this again. Really impressed with Ale Apothecary so far. Could imagine working through a 750ml bottle over the course of an evening.

Photo of Huhzubendah
4.24/5  rDev +0.2%
look: 4 | smell: 4.25 | taste: 4.25 | feel: 4.25 | overall: 4.25

Batch Nov 09 2012
10.78 alc vol

The beer is light golden with a small, fizzy white head. The aroma offers lemons, wild yeast, grass, funk. Herbal and earthy tones with a delicate sweetness balanced by a light funk. Highly drinkable and really smooth on the palate. This one is a sleeper. Light spice quality. Beautiful balance and so easy to drink. Where is the alcohol presence? Masterfully hidden. A truly fabulous beer.

Photo of TotallyHosed
3.94/5  rDev -6.9%
look: 4 | smell: 3.75 | taste: 4 | feel: 4 | overall: 4

Batch 12/14/2012. Thanks to Trystero.

Pours with a huge bright white and very active head. The head dissipates rather quickly, leaving some lacing. The color is a bright, semi-opaque, golden yellow.

The nose has some wild funk, hay and some lemongrass. There is also a sort of candied orange or candied lemon in the nose.

The flavor has some tartness, some funk and a little white wine barrel character. The finish includes some grain notes and very subtle barrel notes.

The feel is light to medium. The brew does coat the mouth very lightly. While the head is active, the feel is very prickly with carbonation.

Overall, this is a very approachable and well crafted wild ale. The tart and funky flavors are relatively light. This combined with a moderate ABV makes this wild ale very drinkable.

Photo of SierraFlight
3.91/5  rDev -7.6%
look: 4 | smell: 3.5 | taste: 4 | feel: 4.25 | overall: 4

750ml bottle shared during #bottlecherwednesday at Beachwood BBQ in Seal Beach. Poured into a tulip. Golden-yellow slightly hazy appearance with a thin white head that quickly fizzes down to nothing. Aroma is lactic funkiness, citrus, tropical fruit, bready malt, and oak. Taste is tart/sour tropical and citrus fruit, grassy hop bitterness, oak, buttery, and vinous on the finish. Medium-light body, smooth, thin texture, fizzy carbonation, dry finish.

to view more.
La Tache from The Ale Apothecary
94 out of 100 based on 194 ratings.