Avery Anniversary Ale - Fifteen - Avery Brewing Company

Not Rated.
Avery Anniversary Ale - FifteenAvery Anniversary Ale - Fifteen

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BA SCORE
81
good

438 Ratings
THE BROS
74
okay

(view ratings)
Ratings: 438
Reviews: 372
rAvg: 3.59
pDev: 18.11%
Wants: 6
Gots: 9 | FT: 2
Brewed by:
Avery Brewing Company visit their website
Colorado, United States

Style | ABV
American Wild Ale |  7.68% ABV

Availability: Limited (brewed once)

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

No notes at this time.

(Beer added by: ArrogantB on 04-27-2008)
Beer: Ratings & Reviews
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Ratings: 438 | Reviews: 372 | Display Reviews Only:
Reviews by electricfields:
Photo of electricfields
4.45/5  rDev +24%
look: 4.5 | smell: 4.5 | taste: 4.5 | feel: 4 | overall: 4.5

This is one of my favorites in a long time.

A: First thing I noticed was that this stuff looks really intense when you pour it. It pours a cloudy golden yellow with lots of bubbles rising off the bottom with a fluffy white head that sticks around. Leaves a thick frothy lacing on the glass.

S: Really, really sweet. Almost like apple juice, but way more tart. A hint of some kind of flower, some wheat.

T: Surprising emphasis on the sour, but with a nice fruity sweetness balancing it. I taste some green apple for sure. There's also a nice spiciness to it. Maybe a little coriander.

M: Sort of foamy. Lots and lots of carbonation.

D: Be careful with this one. 7.68% alcohol, and it's pretty much concealed beyond recognition. It's also so tasty you wouldn't mind putting a couple of them away.

More User Reviews:
Photo of RoyalT
3.95/5  rDev +10%
look: 4 | smell: 4 | taste: 4 | feel: 4.5 | overall: 3.5

Appearance - This poured a nice, glowing orange in color that was muddled yet shiny and brilliant. The pure white head was gorgeous.

Smell - This nose is a mix of farmy wild yeast notes and American hops. It's almost like a non-sour sour ale but with an American Pale Ale hop profile. It's very intriguing to say the least.

Taste - The flavors aren't sour at all. It's like a Belgian farmhouse ale but like I said with some dominant hoppy notes. The malt base is pretty much lost but you can find it if you look hard enough.

Mouthfeel - This ale is a solid medium-bodied, actually a tad bigger, with some tight, wonderful carbonation and a mild but significant bitter finish. Nicely done.

Drinkability - I wouldn't call this a drinker or a session ale, but it's interesting and quite unique among American breweries.

Photo of tectactoe
3.75/5  rDev +4.5%
look: 4.25 | smell: 3.5 | taste: 3.75 | feel: 4 | overall: 3.75

Bottled in April 2008, enjoyed July 2013; that means over five years of aging for this anniversary, 100% Brett beer. Who knows what those critters might have done in that long of a time frame! Cloudy and gold with a lighter, hay-straw colored bottom. The broken and chunky, off-white head is large and volatile with a gentle pour - impressive for five years of shelf-sitting.

Holy smackers - funk city. But what else do you expect when you give wild yeast a chance to work its magic for 60 months? Wet hay, bubblegum, lightly tart pineapple, heavy bandaid (one of the first times I can say I smell bandaid). Plenty of dank, musty and cheesy-ass cellar basement floor like aromas abound. My god, da funk is here.

The aroma is about 90% funk, with the other 10% consisting of some phenol alcohol, herbal hops, and a grassy twinge that I'm going to call hibiscus because the bottle says "hibiscus" on it. There may be some other spices sifting through the static, but at five years and counting, the brettanomyces just continues to swallow everything in its path.

Fifteen may have been shitty during its release (as early ratings would indicate), but it seems that time has treated it well. Either that, or you know, "there's nowhere else to go but up". The taste is just like the aroma; fully loaded with musty forest floors, sweaty horseblanket, clumpy yeast and damp wood, rotten pineapple... just unabashed, funky shit all over the place.

The extremely mild Brett-induced pineapple tartness quickly melds into a finishing sweetness with a touch of Belgian-like spices, peppery and floral, with more of those grassy and hibiscus-esque notes in the finish. The mouth feel is pretty good and light, carbonation is lively and even borderline effervescent. It's safe to say that this sucker has held up pretty well.

Well there's no doubt that if funky-ass beers are your thing or you enjoy eating spoonfuls of brettanomyces yeast, then you'll love Avery's Fifteen with five solid years on it. It's like a poor man's Sanctification, only without the insane tartness (which I was kind of hoping to find here and didn't get it). I love funk, too, but it was almost just a bit much in this capacity. Still not a bad pick up for the price, especially since 100% brett'd beers aren't the most common in Michigan.

Photo of brownbeer
3.7/5  rDev +3.1%
look: 3.5 | smell: 4 | taste: 3.5 | feel: 3.5 | overall: 4

Dull gold in color without much lasting head.

Aroma is funky and fruity with darker dried fruit notes.

A bit of lemony tartness up front, funk and a orange/peach kind of fruitiness. The finish is spicy and dry.

A little to clean and lacks anything too great going on. I've had this about five times now, and I think i'm done giving this chances.

Photo of explosivebeer
2.93/5  rDev -18.4%
look: 3 | smell: 4 | taste: 2.5 | feel: 2.5 | overall: 3

This beer has a light hazy orange color and a thin head. The aroma has sour cherry, spice, and fig notes present. It has a light body with a relatively clean finish and subtle malt and figs. I'm not sure why they'd release this beer as their 15th Anniversary option.

Photo of BeerAdvocate
3.23/5  rDev -10%
look: 3 | smell: 3 | taste: 3.5 | feel: 3 | overall: 3

From BeerAdvocate Magazine Volume II, Issue VI:

Brettanomyces create a beer that's an acquired taste. Some say it's the pate of beer. Not only is Fifteen an American Wild Ale, but it runs the short path to extreme beer land with the use of black mission figs, hibiscus flowers and white pepper. Oh yeah, and it's fermented with 100-percent Brett!!!

Good head retention, lacing as well. Bright clarity with a light rose water-hued yellow color. Aroma is funky. Super funky, so funky it's love it or hate it, but we can take the funk just not sure about anyone else. Ripe fruit and barnyard combo in the nose. Smooth medium body. At first sip it's knee-slapping funk. Very ripe fruit, Band-Aid and barnyard funk are clearly dominant. Medicinal flavors throughout. Hibiscus tartness matches the tartness from the Brett and the white pepper is more warming than flavorful, though the alcohol plays a part in the warmth as well. Mission figs never really peak, though there is a cooked fig flavor deep within. Finishes dry and somewhat clean.

Funk, lots of it. Again, love it or hate it. For us, it's great to try but on its own but really should be paired with some sort of soft cheese or hearty game meat.

Photo of AdvocateFan
2.65/5  rDev -26.2%
look: 3.5 | smell: 3 | taste: 2.5 | feel: 3.5 | overall: 2

I've tried this beer on tap and from the bottle. I really didn't much care for what was on tap back in May 2008 when I first tried this, but figured I'd give a bottle a shot.

This review is from the bottle.

The funk is there, but pretty restrained really. Their Brett strain seems a bit tame, at least in this beer. Ample spiciness comes through, but strikes me more as a yeasty spiciness, not white pepper. Notes of past prime cantaloupe, horse hair, basement mustiness, aspirin dust, alcohol burn, 'turned' (as in spoiled) grapefruit juice, and old lemons. All in all though, for the funk that's there, it's quite "bright" and still has somewhat of a delicate fruitiness. Not the 'funkbomb' I was expecting. I mean, it's funky, but not explosive, "F-BOMB" funky.

On the palate, it has a funk profile, but the fruity figgy notes seem to subdue it to the point where the funk breaks late and low, almost sneaking past the fruity/figgy notes. There's a definite sour character, but it's quite tame, and overall acidity is lower than expected. The finishing sourness is very much reminiscent of Sweetarts Candy--but with a moderately funky aftertaste ('Funktarts'). At "only" 7.7%ABV the alcohol REALLY comes ripping right through all the rest of it. Perhaps the white pepper, which doesn't really stand out on its own, is helping to pull out the alcohol's sharpness.

Overall, this one really doesn't work for me. Neither did their Thirteenth Anniversary beer, which was a major disappointment. It's rare that I find Avery beers that I don't like. Seems to be restricted to their anniversary releases. I love that they're experimenting, however, and hell, if I brewed either this beer or their Thirteen, I'd be beyond thrilled. Not bad beers, but still did not live up to my expectations. Let there be no doubt, I finished the bomber, but not with the vigor I'm capable of...

Final note: The main difference between the bottle and what I had on tap (when fresh) was that the tap version had more prominent notes of "off produce" instead of the "Funktarts" character that dominated the bottled sample.

Photo of orbitalr0x
3.85/5  rDev +7.2%
look: 4 | smell: 4 | taste: 4 | feel: 3.5 | overall: 3.5

Pours from the bottle an extremely hazy sunshine yellow with an inch of white head on top of the brew and good retention. Aromas start out with crisp malts and deep floral nuances. Earthy Brett funkiness melds with fruit and fig scents. Spicy yeast in the background with some sour twang as well. Complex and enjoyable.

First sip brings slightly sweet malt upfront with floral flavors and a good meld of fruit and fig. Brett kicks in alongside spicy, earthy yeast tones. Flows down on the dry side with lingering funk, herb and spice aftertastes and a mild tartness.

Mouthfeel is a bit on the lighter side with fast moving carbonation that creates a creamy feel. An interesting brew with a good kick of funkiness. A bomber is enough for me but I look forward to aging the others I have for a bit longer.

Photo of bulldogg915
3/5  rDev -16.4%

Photo of Beaver13
2.83/5  rDev -21.2%
look: 3.5 | smell: 2 | taste: 3 | feel: 3 | overall: 3

22 oz bottle. Pours a hazy golden orange with a small white head that quickly diminishes to a thin collar.

The aroma is rather unpleasant funky (and slightly burnt) yeast and bandaids with some spices and some tart fruits. Some buttery malts (popcorn) come out as it warms.

The flavor is a little tart fruitiness (lemons) and buttery malts that is quickly smothered by a kind of peppery and floral bitterness. The mouthfeel is medium bodied with lots of sharp carbonation at first that mellows.

Overall, an interesting concept, but not nearly as good as it sounded. The combination of flavors and smells didn't mesh well with me. It'd be interesting to see if more sourness comes out as it ages.

Photo of merlin48
4.33/5  rDev +20.6%
look: 4 | smell: 4 | taste: 4.5 | feel: 4 | overall: 4.5

Bomber pours a hazy golden amber body with a small bonewhite head that leaves some thin sheet lacing.

Aroma has figs and funk, with an earthy yeastiness.

Mouthfeel has a spritzy carbonation and a light medium body.

Taste is complex. The Bretts are going to work here. Wet gravel and barnyard notes abound. Dry and funky all the way through. Year old dried figs blend into some horse blanket. Dirty and earthy, like chewing on twigs.

Pleasantly funky and highly drinkable. I think Avery does a better job with their anniversary ales than anybody out there. This one reminds me of some of the better Deproef wild ales.

Photo of Billolick
3.43/5  rDev -4.5%
look: 3 | smell: 4 | taste: 3.5 | feel: 3 | overall: 3

Bomber bottle, "bottled in April, 2008", label pays homage to famous Belgian painters. Gold foil over the cap. Pours clear initially, the yeast cake on the bottom of the bottle creates cloudy later pours. Minor lacing left from the short lived eggshell head. Carbonation on the low side. Allowed to warm, the nose is of Brett laced horseyness. Sourness is quite moderate, I get licorice notes, some coriander, some farmy and sour funk and not much else. I will do my best to get a few bottles more of this one and let em sit around for a year or so to see if the Brett kicks in more fully. This fresh bottle seems to have a ways to go to reach its complexity and interest apogee.

Photo of Mora2000
4/5  rDev +11.4%
look: 4 | smell: 4 | taste: 4 | feel: 4 | overall: 4

I was surprised to see this on tap in July 2010 at the Fort Worth Gingerman.

The beer pours a hazy gold color with a white head. The aroma is a lot of citrus fruit with some brett character. The flavor is a nice mix of brett, leather, oranges and yeast. Medium mouthfeel and medium character. Not bad.

Photo of olradetbalder
4/5  rDev +11.4%

Photo of magictrokini
1.83/5  rDev -49%
look: 3.5 | smell: 3.5 | taste: 1 | feel: 3 | overall: 1

Pours murky yellow with a thin, fizzy white head. Aroma is very pleasant, possibly the only good thing about this beer. Figs, apples, and the advertised funky yeast reminiscent of a Flemish. The taste is brutal. Up front is nice: fig, hops, and hibiscus flavors. Then the wretched wild yeast takes over. Sour is not the word for it. It tastes like the tangiest pink taco you could imagine with a bile back. I gave this one a chance, making it thorugh 2/3 of a bomber until I cried "no mas." The only reason this rating didn't go lower is because I like Avery and applaud their willingness to take a chance. However, you could not force me to drink this again. You can ban me for life for this rating, I will stand by it until I die.

And yes, I like sours, I like Bretty beers, I just could not take this. Sorry.

Photo of NilocRellim
3/5  rDev -16.4%

Photo of beerkittycat
3.88/5  rDev +8.1%
look: 3.5 | smell: 3.5 | taste: 4 | feel: 4 | overall: 4

Appearance is gold to slightly amber. Slight haze but decent for a conditioned bottle. Rough off-white head lingers for a moment and disappears. Interesting aromas. Brett definately present but the malt actually dominates with the hibiscus, fig and hops delicately balanced altogether. Taste is much the same as aroma but Brett starts to compete with strong malts as the brew warms up. The hibiscus, fig and hop are a nice balance to the Brett. Medium to medium-full body with a nice touch of carbonic bite at the tip of the tongue. Hop bitterness is just enough to remind you of their presence and complements the sourness from the Brett. A very full-flavored beer but nothing really dominates in this beer because it is so nicely balanced between malt, hops, and Brett. I suppose this beer is too mild in Brett flavor and aroma for the style so I will "ding" it for that, but I really enjoyed this beer. I would expect this beer would get more "horsey" as it ages so shelve it for a bit if that's what you like. Or, get two and drink one now and save one for later for comparison.

Photo of Soonami
2.15/5  rDev -40.1%
look: 3.5 | smell: 3 | taste: 1.5 | feel: 3 | overall: 2

I've had my share of wild ales, but this beer was definitely not what I was looking for. It is definitely spontaneously fermented with lots of horse-stable straw flavor, but it had almost no acidity to balance out the funk. It was like drinking a beer version of Rocqueforte cheese that wasn't salty or tart. Combined with a mineral quality it had a distinctly meaty taste. It looked alright, pale and couldy, with almost no head and smell was fine.

Most disappointing was that I had this at City Tap House in West Philadelphia, at an event termed, "Best of the best," when in fact this was one of the worst wild Ales I've ever tasted

Photo of OStrungT
4.13/5  rDev +15%
look: 4.5 | smell: 4.5 | taste: 4 | feel: 4 | overall: 4

This beer pours a hazy golden yellow color, witha thin white head. The head fades fast, leaving too few laces.

This beer has an earthy yeast aroma. It smells subtly spicy. I can detect some sweet fruit as well. Apples and cantelope. It has a slightly sour aroma.

This beer tastes much like it smells. More fruity in the flavor. Definately aple and cantelope. Some earthy yeast flavor. A slight coriander flavor is also present. This beer dosent have the sour flavor that the aroma lead me to believe.

This beer leaves a sweat fruity aftertaste. It is highly carbonated, suiting the style well.

This beer would probably make a good session beer. The flavor isnt too aggressive, and the alcohol isnt all that high.

Overall: Thanks go to Russpowell for this generous hook up. This beer is great. I was hoping it would be sour, and it wasnt, so I was a little let down, but it was still a great beer.

Photo of brow1901
3.95/5  rDev +10%
look: 5 | smell: 4 | taste: 4 | feel: 3 | overall: 4

Bottled April 2008, poured into a snifter.

A- Amazingly fluffy Duvel style white and rocky head atop a perfectly pale yellow beer. Leaves great thick lacing and has superb retention.

S- Smells quite tart and rather barnyardish. I never tried this beer when it was released but I can't pick up any of the fig character in the smell or taste.

T- Exceedingly dry almost like a champagne. Not nearly as tart or sour as it smell (to my disappointment). I no expert on figs but the label said it imparts a Jam like flavor. There is really no sweetness left in this brew so I imagine that flavor has been fermented out by the brett. I the very end I begin to possibly pick up on the pepper which is not necessarily an unfamiliar flavor (it just seems to emphasis a saison like taste) and adds a very slight burn to the back of the throat only noticeable after drinking most of the bottle.

M- Not a bad mouthfeel I just felt it to be average. Light on the tongue, a little too dry and yet somewhat of a lingering aftertaste.

D- Decent drinkability really nice on a warm summer night or day with enough kick to make a 22oz worth the buck.

Photo of glid02
4.1/5  rDev +14.2%
look: 4 | smell: 4.5 | taste: 4 | feel: 4 | overall: 4

Had this on-tap at Trappeze in Athens.

Pours a murky yellow-orange color with a one-finger white head. The head dissipates fairly quickly into a wispy layer on top leaving some lacing.

Smells good - mild funkiness with an equal amount of fruit aromas - tart apples, pears, and citrus.

Tastes similar to how it smells. The funkiness isn't as pronounced, instead letting the fruit flavors do most of the work. Tart apples, pears, and citrus are all still there, slightly more on the sweet side but still with a solid tartness.

Mouthfeel is good. Good thickness with active carbonation make this go down smoothly.

Drinkability is good. The flavors, most notable the tartness, aren't overpowering. I could have more than one of these.

Overall this seems like it would be a good gateway wild ale - not too overdone on the funk or tartness. This is certainly not in the upper tier of sours by any stretch, but it's done well and is definitely worth a shot.

Photo of rhoadsrage
4.43/5  rDev +23.4%
look: 4 | smell: 4.5 | taste: 4.5 | feel: 4 | overall: 4.5

(Served in a tulip glass)

A- This beer pours a clear yellow body with a slight orange hue to it and a snow white head that is thin and sticky creeping up the glass with each sip.

S- Even during the pour there is a musty sweet funk of Brett. The notes of perfume flowers and grapefruit pith increase as the beer warms with a hint of wet straw coming through in the last glass.

T- This beer has some nice smooth tartness with grapefruit notes and a faint brie rind flavor. There is a light fruity tang to it aswell. The finish has a faint black pepper heat to it with some sweet jam flavor that appear after the finish and linger a bit. The finish has a nice white cheese flavor to it aswell.

M- This beer has a medium-light mouthfeel with a fizzy note at the finish that helps balance the sweet jam flavors. There is no alcohol heat noted.

D- This is my first 100%brett beer and it was interesting. The yeast flavors were wild and dominating and all the other flavors were really muted like figs, hibiscus,, white pepper and other spices but I was fine with that.

Photo of IntriqKen
4.25/5  rDev +18.4%
look: 4.5 | smell: 4 | taste: 4.5 | feel: 4 | overall: 4

Poured a cloudy light orange...tangerine colored liquid with a nice full head of two fingers that melted quickly to a faint ring with no lacing.

Aroma is hard to identify...tobacco...funky bret...sour....sweet citrus peels.

Taste is equally hard to pin down. Very complex.
The sour is balanced very well with the sweet. For this old palette, it is too hard to identify. Much of the aroma is present in the taste including the tobaco and lots of drying hops at the end without the bitter bite usually associated with hops.

Nice dry mouth after the swallow. Overall a very enjoyable brew...difficult to describe...best described as ....'I like it...enjoyable...drying...satisfying.'

Photo of dadonabike
4.33/5  rDev +20.6%
look: 4 | smell: 4 | taste: 4.5 | feel: 4 | overall: 4.5

A: For some reason I was surprised by the light color of this beer. I was expecting it to be dark and cloudy but it poured a pleasant golden color with a half inch of froth that faded quickly leaving light lacing.

S: With Brett. being one of the stars of this show the bread/sourdough smell was expected. I also got hints of oranges, gas, & brine. My wife & her friend picked up more on fruit & cider.

T: The standouts were malt, sourness, and spice which seemed to blend together very well. The fig & hibiscus flavors are there but they are very subdued. The fig flavor came through as a sort of aftertaste- as in after you have eaten dried figs that were more dried than they should be- not a lot of sweetness. The hibiscus was very mellow- the hibiscus is the one of the reasons I thought this beer would be redder. I had just brewed a batch of hibiscus/Irish red homebrew where the hibiscus was a bit overpowering and sour. This was just a touch of floral and sour that worked very well.
I also noted an astringent flavor that made my tongue tingle slightly, I associate this flavor with a flower I have eaten but I can't recall the name, it looked similar to chamomile I think but edible marigolds and calendula have some similarities. The after taste of this beer was malt with a very pleasing blend of all those flavors listed above- Fantastic. My wife did not enjoy it; said it tasted of "scrumpy" (?) a cheap cider that welsh teenagers get drunk on. Her friend (female) enjoyed it noting more fruitiness than I did and told me I was crazy for the tingly tongue thing.

I felt this beer is very drinkable if you like sour. It has good body, nice carbonation, & seems to be a well thought out/crafted beer. I really did not taste the alcohol as I thought I would given the ABV & I'd like to pick some up for winter as it struck me as a nice Autumn/Winter beer. I had my second glass with my spaghetti marinara and it blended perfectly.

Photo of jmz62565
4/5  rDev +11.4%
look: 4 | smell: 4 | taste: 4 | feel: 4 | overall: 4

Pours a clear light amber with a ton of carbonation and a medium white foamy head. The heads not big,but it does leave good lacing. The smell is pungent with spices,alcohol,and bread yeast. The taste has a hop crispness followed with a sour bread yeast flavor,spices,alcohol, and some dark fruit aftertastes. The m/f is light with the flavors mixing well. A pretty good beer,not great, but better than some of the reviews.

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Avery Anniversary Ale - Fifteen from Avery Brewing Company
81 out of 100 based on 438 ratings.