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

Collaboration Not Litigation Ale - Avery Brewing Company

Not Rated.
Collaboration Not Litigation AleCollaboration Not Litigation Ale

Educational use only; do not reuse.
very good

1,477 Ratings
no score

(send 'em beer!)
Ratings: 1,477
Reviews: 718
rAvg: 3.91
pDev: 10.49%
Wants: 42
Gots: 191 | FT: 9
Brewed by:
Avery Brewing Company visit their website
Colorado, United States

Style | ABV
Belgian Strong Dark Ale |  8.72% ABV

Availability: Rotating

Notes & Commercial Description:
Beer added by: FtownThrowDown on 01-23-2007

No notes at this time.
Beer: Ratings & Reviews
to view all ratings, reviews and sorting options.
Ratings: 1,477 | Reviews: 718
Photo of PintOHops
4.05/5  rDev +3.6%
look: 4 | smell: 4 | taste: 4 | feel: 4.5 | overall: 4

Glass - Snifter

A - Clouded orange/brownish color with a 1-finger head that dissipated quickly to a sticky looking ring. I got a few spots left on my glass but no lacing.

S - I get a combination of leafy hop notes and bubble gum like yeast characteristics. I also pick up bread and a bit of nuts. It smells good to me.

T - Very bready throughout with musty qualities here and there. I pick up toasted bread, nuts, hints of toffee and a bit of alcohol as well. Towards the finish I get mustiness, a bit of bubble gum, brown sugar and it finishes with mild bitterness that balanced out the alcoholic flavor and the sweetness of the beer.

M - Smooth and creamy with soft crispness and a medium-full body.

O - I picked up pretty much what I expected by looking at the style. It's a nice beer but for the price I'd probably go with something else next time. Overall It's pretty drinkable for the ABV, and I enjoyed it's bready and malty flavors with it's smooth, creamy feel. I say pick it up for sure, especially if your a Belgian brew fan. Cheers!

Photo of JosiahS
4/5  rDev +2.3%
look: 4 | smell: 4 | taste: 4 | feel: 4 | overall: 4

Glass: Snifter

a: Cloudy and honey-colored. Looks pretty similar to a fresh jar of honey with the honeycomb still suspended inside. This ring for the head.

s: Banana, bubblegum and pepper from the yeast. Sweet toffy and breadyness. Maybe a prick of pine, very subtle. Overall a light and airy aroma but still suggests a very flavorful beer.

t: In-line with the aroma. Lots of banana, clove with a medium boquet of malts: toast bread, biscuit, caramel, a hint of cocoa. Finishes relatively clean.

m: Medium-full bodied. A little oily but light enough to keep coming back for sip after sip. A light bit of heat in the throat.

o: Not bad at all. Alcohol is well hidden. Not too heavy. Priced a little high for what you get but overall, great beer.

Photo of emmasdad
4/5  rDev +2.3%
look: 4 | smell: 4 | taste: 4 | feel: 4 | overall: 4

We had this one on tap yesterday at Avery. Poured a nice deep, dark brown color, with a smallish light brown head. Aromas of dark caramel, candi sugar, malt and light hops. On the palate, this one was medium bodied, with dark fruit, milk chocolate and a bit of spice. Nice to see a collaboration of this sort.

Photo of zaphodchak
3.53/5  rDev -9.7%
look: 4 | smell: 3.5 | taste: 3.5 | feel: 3.5 | overall: 3.5

Batch 5

Medium pour yields a finger of fluffy offwhite head atop a hazy amber body. Laces nicely.

The smell is interesting, though faint; tart Belgian yeast over something subtler, kind of nutty, perhaps.

Taste doesn't quite stick out blatantly as two things mixed together, but is a bit strange. Malt, but also tartness at the front and something faintly vegetal on the finish-- leafy, but not hoppy. A bit of soy sauce.

Mouthfeel is nice if slightly thin.

Overall this is all right, but not the sort of thing I'd get again. I tend to be a bit suspicious of mixing two different styles to begin with.

Photo of Chaney
3.13/5  rDev -19.9%
look: 4 | smell: 3.5 | taste: 3 | feel: 2.5 | overall: 3

Bottled in January 2011; Batch 5

A: Sort of a brick, dirty brown color, no transparency due to cloudiness, and a small slightly off-white head that went almost flat fairly fast.

S: Belgian funk for sure, but this was muted substantially by pillowy yeast, and dark fruit (dates and raisons primarily).

T: Same as the nose, and a bit boring actually. It sort of reminded me of a slightly flat, sweeter version of RR Damnation. Fruity, smooth finish with ever the slightest bit of dryness.

M: A bit thin actually and VERY low in carbonation. Was this intentional? The lack of creaminess that might have given this brew a more interesting character followed suit. Absolutely no lacing whatsoever. Bummer...

O: Ho-hum...: I never thought I would use that to describe a RR (or even an Avery) beer. I had this one once last year before I started reviewing and didn't think much of it then either. It certainly looks like my taste for this one hasn't changed...

Photo of Groucho75
4.17/5  rDev +6.6%
look: 3.5 | smell: 4 | taste: 4.5 | feel: 4 | overall: 4

Batch # 5, bottled Jan 2011 with 11048 stamped on the neck. Stored in a fridge and left out for about 15 minutes to warm up a little. Nifty little back story on the side while waiting. Guess this is about as close as I'll get to something from RRBC until I go out west. I've enjoyed quite a few Avery products, but it's nice to get some new perspective.

Poured a deep honey gold into a tulip. Slight head that wilted to a bubbling thatch with plenty of lacing while I nursed this.

Apple, toffee, candy sugar, plum, hints of spice and malt on the nose.

Savoring the sips on this one; lots of character as spice, clove, and cherry (?) on the palate. The flavor is balanced and I don't think it's overly complex in spite of how much is going on here. Very smooth.

For nearly 9%, it's not knocking you over with it's ABV. Yes, the alcohol is there, but perhaps with a few months age in the bottle it's mellowed enough that you can savor this, but I wouldn't crack more than one bottle a night.

Overall, lovely stuff. $8 a bottle, so it's not something I'd get every time I step out for some beer. A really nice aperitif beer before a heavy meal with something like rabbit or duck as the fruit/yeast/sugar will warm you up, or have with (as) dessert.

Looking forward to Batch #6...

Photo of Bfarr
4.14/5  rDev +5.9%
look: 3.5 | smell: 4.5 | taste: 4 | feel: 4.5 | overall: 4

Cloudy mahogany with thin tan head and poor retention. Fantastic sweet tamarind and yeasty dark fruit aromas. Big yeast up front, peppery, sweet cherry/plum, and a salty finish/linger. Light alcohol and semi-dry finish. Robust, bready, deep tongue fuzz and a little acidic.

Strong flavored beer up front muddies up a bit the longer it stays on the palate and as the bottle wears on but lingers nicely and sticks to the ribs. Despite the flavor being overshadowed, the other qualities make up for it and make an interesting and overall pleasant beer.

Photo of gnemesis
4/5  rDev +2.3%
look: 4 | smell: 4 | taste: 4 | feel: 4 | overall: 4

Poured half of a 22oz bottle into a snifter on 04/11/11. This is from batch #2
Pours a reddish brown with a thick, creamy off-white topper. Good retention and pretty good lacing all the way down. This brew smells of Belgian yeast, dark fruit, brown sugar, sweet biscuit, spice, with some fruity esters and some faint booze. The taste follows the nose but adds some earthy notes to the mix. I find that the flavors play nicely together. Medium body and medium carbonation round out this beer. Good and tasty for sure! Unique idea (not suing) and I hope they do it again soon.

Photo of kraken6100
3.1/5  rDev -20.7%
look: 3 | smell: 3 | taste: 3 | feel: 4 | overall: 3

Batch #3 from 2009, 22oz bottle poured into a 16oz Chimay goblet.

A- Walnut receding to a mahogany around the edges. small bits of yeast still escaped into the glass. Thumb sized head.

S- whoppers malted milk ball candy (sweet malt and chocolate?), with some banana esters and a sweet, bready aroma. There is a fruit somewhere along the line of prune or raisin. No figs or overly dark fruits. Caramel as well.

T- Vanilla without a barrel-aged heat. Certainly the sweet malts and caramel taste are prevalent. Some dry spiciness at the end, but goes pretty well. As it warms, I'm just getting more of the same, maybe more of a specific brown sugar taste. This might be that Turbinado sugar they allude to on the label. It's good, not great. Certainly not bad.

M- Nice and carbonated still. Surprisingly light, despite the big sweet flavors and spicier finish. Not syrupy or cloying at the end at all.

O- Not bad, not spectacular. It's already a bit on the sweet side, so I don't regret having busted it open. Not sure how much more this would've changed. I got it pretty cheap, and it was definitely a nice change from all the pales and sours I've been drinking lately.

Would be good with some Asiago cheese for sure.

Photo of SassyBootblack
4/5  rDev +2.3%
look: 4 | smell: 4 | taste: 4 | feel: 4 | overall: 4

Poured into a New Belgium tulip glass. I noticed it was batch #5.

Appearance: A deep brown color, good clarity. Thin head which leaves a bit of lacing.

Smell: The usual Belgian phenols and esters.

Taste: A good amount of Belgian fruitiness and some rich, dark maltiness that wasn't roasty or too sweet. A small tang to the flavor.

Mouthfeel: Light bodied.

A delicious Belgian-style strong dark ale.

Photo of SubpoenaDeuces
3.68/5  rDev -5.9%
look: 4 | smell: 3.5 | taste: 4 | feel: 2 | overall: 4

A: Its appearance is a medium amber to light brown with nice lacing and a moder ate 1/2 finger head, this batch had a lot of sediment which dances with the medium carbonation levels

S: there's a boozy sweetness to it that imparts a dark cherry or a raisin smell, that brightens up into a grape sort of finish

T: There are several layers to this, but suffice it to say, it is very good. It tastes similar to a belgian double or an alcoholic biere de garde, you get the heat from the alcohol but it remains light and sweet with moderate hops to balance out the fruit sweetness. It almost has a dull belgian quad feels to it, with regards to the dark fruits and caramel notes, but it's not as pronounced, which works to its advantage.

M: The mouthfeel is fantastic for a beer of this strange caliber. I wasn't a huge fan of the Russian River salvation, but the cut with the other belgian elements really dulls the dark ale into a very pleasant mouthfeel. There isnt an exceptional amount of coating, but the chewiness has a great quality to it, just enough to impart the strong middle notes and then wash clean away, making the next sip welcome, not residual. Although it should be noted there is a mild smoky dryness to the middle body of this beer that some may find offputting if they dislike black ales or rauchbieres.

D: All things considered, this is very drinkable, even beyond the 220z serving, which is a good indicator for a beer of this almost 9% abv. I would usually lean away from beers of this strength and knock them down on drinkability due to sweetness or maltiness issues leading one to feel overly stuffed, but this doesn't impart that feeling.

Photo of tbrown4
4.27/5  rDev +9.2%
look: 4 | smell: 4.5 | taste: 4.5 | feel: 3.5 | overall: 4

My friend Josh brought this over to share with my wife and I. I had this one back when it was fresh. Very interested in trying it again 3 years later.

Batch 2 (2008)

A - Hazy, ruby brown, off-white head, sticky lacing, head does not stay through the tasting

S - Yeasty, fruity, bready sweet, light roasty notes, chocolate.

T - Gingerbread and roasted coffee up front, fruity tart middle, long sweet and sour finish.

M - Feels this for the flavor profile

O - Very enjoyable beer. Somewhat heavy on the palate. Alcohol is very well hidden, but there's a lot going on here.

Photo of mavbrew
4/5  rDev +2.3%
look: 4 | smell: 4 | taste: 4 | feel: 4 | overall: 4

Bottled Jan. 2011, Batch #5, poured into DFH Signature glass (I don't have an Avery or RR glass, oh well).

A: The color is a molasses with reddish highlights, with a finger thick, off white head that slowly dissipates and leaves a bit of lacing on the glass.

S: Right off the bat I'm getting cherries, but after smelling some more the yeast comes through with some spicy undertones and other subtle fruity notes. Very complex smell, lots of different aromas hitting the nose, take your time on this one.

T: Although I got aggressive cherry notes in the nose, it's not present in the flavor. Up front is the Belgian yeast with a nice spicy kick to it. Also coming through in the palette is a hint of caramel malt and fruity undertones (banana like). The finish is dry with the yeast and spice maintaining presence throughout.

M: Medium bodied with light carbonation. The feel is yeasty and spicy.

D: This is a very good collaboration from two great breweries. It's complex but a very easy drink. It has a higher ABV but it's hardly noticeable. Not quite top tier BSDA, but a nice intro beer to the style.

Photo of jmdrpi
4.12/5  rDev +5.4%
look: 4 | smell: 4.5 | taste: 4 | feel: 4 | overall: 4

22oz bottle - Batch #4 - Feb 2010.

cloudy opaque rust colored beer with amber highlights. off-white head that eventually fades into just a thin covering. decent lacing.

big aroma of sweet fruit and booze. very pleasant. taste starts carmely, heavy on raisins, finishes a bit dryer. medium body, smooth mouthfeel, good amount of carbonation.

overall - I've never had either beers separately, but it's a blend well done.

Photo of wcintula
4.32/5  rDev +10.5%
look: 3.5 | smell: 4 | taste: 4.5 | feel: 4.5 | overall: 4.5

Nice blending of two beers.

Looks simple as any brown ale could: brown with orange highlights. The smell is a wonderfully layered blend of big malts, floral notes, and spices from the Belgian yeast, all subtle, yet noticeable. The taste brings in more earthy notes and dried fruit sweetness with a velvety feel and an excellently masked %ABV. Top notch.

Photo of CuttDeez
4.01/5  rDev +2.6%
look: 3 | smell: 4.5 | taste: 4 | feel: 3.5 | overall: 4

A - A cloudy brown body laced with deep red and orange hues. Very thin white head with little lace.
S - Awesome aroma on this beer. Deep and complex. I took multiple deep draws before even thinking of putting it to my lips. Sweet currants of cherry and some hints of orange zest. The front is very sweet and carmalized. This is mixed with clove and other fine spices. Then some slightly musty oaky booze come in on the back end to round it out. Very nice
T & M - Gppd medium full bodied and coating with a somewhat clean finish and carbination that fades a little. The start is full of carmalized sweetness and dark fruits. The middle gets rather oaky and deep as some notes of vanilla and booze (almost bourbon like). Then the spices come in which open the palate back up to lighter more citrus fruits on the back end to clean the mouth. Beautiful depth and complexity.
O - A good job at a collaboration! A great smelling and tasty concoction from Avery and RR!


Photo of Wisconsinality
3.22/5  rDev -17.6%
look: 3.5 | smell: 4 | taste: 3 | feel: 2.5 | overall: 3

Batch 5 poured into Delerium tulip.

A- Pours a dark reddish brown with a small one finger head that recedes quickly but leaves decent lacing on the side of the glass.

S- The Belgian yeast is apparent right away. There is also some candi sugar to go along with some dark fruits and a little bit of caramel. A little bit of wheat and cracker in there as well.

T- The Belgian yeast is a little more subdued than in the nose. The malt is sweet and smooth and there are hints of chocolate and dark fruits.

M- The body is light to medium bodied. I would have preferred it to be a touch heavier. The carbonation tickles the tongue but is relatively smooth on the way down.

O- I don't know how old this is or how long it sat on the shelf but it seems to be a slight bit oxidized. That or there is something a little off about it.

Photo of DoktorZee
3.95/5  rDev +1%
look: 4 | smell: 4 | taste: 4 | feel: 3.5 | overall: 4

Poured from a 22oz bottle into a hefeweizen glass. Some mystery numbers on the bottle but not recognizable as a best-before date. (Big DUH from me as the Jan 2011 is actually printed on the label! What a crazy place to look!)

A - light brown, slightly cloudy with a tan head that resolves after a couple minutes with just a hint of lacing.

S - initially smelled a little like a dunkel weiss with some banana and spices over yeasty notes, but after a few minutes there was a significant caramel malt that joined the picture.

T - obviously not a dunkel weiss from the taste: very sweet caramel malt dominates over a subtle hops profile that outlasts the sweetness. A bit of dried fruit in the middle and no hint of the banana the nose seemed to suggest. Slight alcohol warming.

M - very light carbonation with a medium body; coats the tongue and mouth slightly, but not so much that it's cloying.

D - quite drinkable; a little sweet to drink more than a glass or two, and nicely warming with a bit of booziness.

Fairly delicious beer that I'm happy to have tried!

Photo of b3shine
3.91/5  rDev 0%
look: 4.5 | smell: 3.5 | taste: 4 | feel: 4 | overall: 4

Draft to pint glass. It's good, but not quite as good as I expected. Of course, I had inflated expectations because the name on the board read "Avery Collaboration BSA," so I thought it was an inter-brewery collaboration beer, which set my expectations pretty high. Good color, forgettable boquet, good flavor. I could take it or leave it in the future; depends on if I'm buying or not ;)

Photo of BARFLYB
4.15/5  rDev +6.1%
look: 4 | smell: 4 | taste: 4 | feel: 4.5 | overall: 4.5

Found this at Joe Canal's in Delran, which is my spot, but that's for me to know.

Collab comes with a hiss once it's pryed, Hissss. In the Rodenbach Grand Gru tulip this beer looks a shade red with some minimal maroon poking around. a strealth pour yielded a faint cap of white stuff, no stick.

Smelling this, Im real impressed with the Belgian characteristics litigation displays. It's Avery and Russian River Barry, Duh! Turbinado sugar goes a long way but not cloy. a steeple of dark fruits with plum and berries. No disernable alcohol. The bottle is a year old FYI.

Im greeted by a tame beast. This is a smoothed out BSDA, no alcohol, and a lot of flavor. On the border but not going over the cloy factor. Turbinado, fruit, berries, a smidgen of sweet malt, that compliments the sugar rather than progressing into a malty mess. Caramel with extreme warming. This beer relaxes me.

Feel is up to snuff style wise, not thin or watery at all, quite smooth and lucious. The body is at about medium and the carb is not sharp but it's there keeping things in check. Berries is the main aftertaste here.

I have always loved this beer, and I dranks it up. Off tap, in bottle, from the faucet, I would drink this beer. A bottle is plenty late at night and 22oz is the perfect size. One year is a great time to pop one if ya gotz it. I think these have some cellaring capabilities, maybe i'll put one down for a while.

Photo of FosterJM
4.18/5  rDev +6.9%
look: 4.5 | smell: 4 | taste: 4.5 | feel: 3.5 | overall: 4

332nd review on BA
bottle to OS wine glass
22oz Batch 5, Jan 11

App- A mixture of brown with a great 1 1/2 in head. Great retention and lacing.

Smell- Again some beers just have the undeniable Belgain tinge to it and this has it along with big sugars and darker malts.

Taste- I think this style is moving into my #1 spot. Just so tasty, complex and flavorful. The sugars are not overdone and the malts accent some nice nuances to the beer.

Mouth- Medium bodied with a medium carbonation level. Sugary residule flavors but this was just a bit too thin for me.

Drink- Great collaboration. Nice to see some people working together. A well done rep of the style with nice flavors and not overbearing. Id like to have an aged bottle to see if it becomes a bit thicker on the feel.

Photo of claytong
4.06/5  rDev +3.8%
look: 4.5 | smell: 3.5 | taste: 4 | feel: 4.5 | overall: 4.5

I might be over ranking it a bit but that's because next to the fumator and one other guy it seemed a lot better. I do like a strong belgian ale that knows what it's doing, so that can be one reason.
One of my favorites from Avery which has a dickhole bartender from Scotland.

Photo of Vierenner
3.64/5  rDev -6.9%
look: 3 | smell: 4 | taste: 3.5 | feel: 4 | overall: 3.5

A: Much lighter color than expected. Carbonation level is just right. Somewhat cloudy.
S: A sweet smell dominates, but there is also an earthy/yeasty aroma.
T: Definitely sweet. I also taste raisins and nuts. There is a bitter hop finish.
M: Fairly light beer,
Overall: Different than the rest, which I like, but only a good beer, at best.

Photo of goldbot
3.88/5  rDev -0.8%
look: 4.5 | smell: 4 | taste: 3.5 | feel: 4.5 | overall: 4

Batch #5, bottled January 2011. Pours hazy and reddish brown. Stiff and foamy off-white head that lasts and leaves good lacing. Bready malt aromas, some hints of chocolate and dark fruit. A bit of spiced yeast notes as well. Rich malty flavor as well bready with a touch of caramel sweetness. A little bit of spicy esters but overall the Belgian character is a bit weak.. The taste is a bit underwhelming but the beer has a rich, creamy, full mouthfeel.

Photo of mdaschaf
3.7/5  rDev -5.4%
look: 4 | smell: 4 | taste: 3.5 | feel: 4 | overall: 3.5

Review from notes 2/11/11. Thanks to THECPJ for sharing.

A: Pours a dark copper with some floaties in it. A nice chunky two finger head forms. Almost looks like a root beer float.

S: Some banana, cloves, yeast. There is also a nice dark fruit aroma and some caramel.

T: Very spicy, the bananas come back. Apples come through in the midpalate. Also get a nutty flavor.

M/D: Medium bodied with nice carbonation. Overall a pretty good beer, wouldn't expect anything else from these two breweries.

to view all ratings, reviews and sorting options.
Collaboration Not Litigation Ale from Avery Brewing Company
88 out of 100 based on 1,477 ratings.