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Brabant - Avery Brewing Company

Not Rated.

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

372 Ratings
no score

(send 'em beer!)
Ratings: 372
Reviews: 294
rAvg: 3.84
pDev: 13.28%
Wants: 34
Gots: 39 | FT: 0
Brewed by:
Avery Brewing Company visit their website
Colorado, United States

Style | ABV
American Wild Ale |  8.65% ABV

Availability: Limited (brewed once)

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

No notes at this time.

(Beer added by: ClockworkOrange on 01-09-2009)
Beer: Ratings & Reviews
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Ratings: 372 | Reviews: 294 | Display Reviews Only:
Photo of bowersdm
4.03/5  rDev +4.9%

12oz bottle poured into an oversized wine glass (I really need to get a flute). Bottled on Feb. 10, 2009. This is my first American Wild Ale.

A - black with a little bit of ruby near the bottom of the glass. a 1cm tan head formed, but quickly dissipated into nothing. I wasn't expecting it to be so dark. I had to double check the bottle to make sure Brabant wasn't just a contaminated barrel aged version of "The Czar."

S - I have never had a Zinfandel before, so I apologize in advance for not knowing what that smells like (or tastes like). The smell is predominantly lactic acid with the usual brett mustiness. Sour berries are also present (raspberries, cherries, or grapes?). Definitely sour, tart, acidic, and musty.

T - Tart and musty throughout with lactic acid and brett rearing their ugly (yet desirable) head. Sour fruit likes cherries, grapes, and even some raisins or prunes. roasted malt, a touch of cocoa along with some caramel or caramel malt. oak is present as a slight smokiness. The flavor seems to me to be a Belgian style imperial stout that's been aged in barrels used for lambics, though not quite as strong as an imperial stout. there may be some hops in the finish (they come across as grassy and piney), but i'm usually puckering when i swallow and I am not quite sure what I'm tasting. The beer leaves a lingering taste of musty attic in my mouth. After about 10 minutes of sipping on this, I'm getting a slight cassium/cinnamon taste.

M - body was on the highside of medium with the carbonation of champage (or seltzer water).

D - I don't know what to make of this. It's a very good beer, but I don't think I could drink it all that often. When i have a beer with Brett, I prefer the beer to be predominantly fruity as opposed to the dark roasted character of this one. It's still pretty good, though.

Notes: Again, first wild ale, but I've had quite a few Flanders Reds, Lambics, and Guezes.

bowersdm, Mar 20, 2009
Photo of IBUnit63
4.15/5  rDev +8.1%

Bottle date 2/10/2009, poured into Reidel Vinum Cabernet glass. Let sit for about 10 minutes before opening and then another 3-5 minutes after opening.

Wow - if I didn't know better I'd say it poured almost as dark and viscous as a stout or an old ale. Nice ginger 1/2 finger head, with an extremely dark pretty well translucent body. There's a little hint of a deep red (like a Zinfandel). Decent amount of carbonation here.

Brett is extremely prominent at first blush. A slight hint of oak and slight tannins from the Zin barrels gives this a nice backbone, as does mildly powerful dark malts, which add more caramel tones with warmth. Hope pine is on deep background. This gets complex quickly.

Yes, let this warm a little - it's barrel tight at first from the oak tannins, hop pine and some austere, electric Brett. But after a few minutes, the carbonation disperses the funk a little more thoroughly and the dark malts come along with the Zin tannins and fruit, providing a slight boozy yet fruity sweetness. Carbonation helps keep this from being overpowering.

As mentioned, sure it's a little tight at first but the fruitness and the tannins of the Zin barrels (after a while there's even some jamminess) emerge and blend nicely with the Brett to soften it a bit. Drinks rather smoothly on the back end leaving a slight pucker but overall nice, long, winelike finish with a decent amount of mellow alcohol but not too much residual sweetness.

This drinks pretty smoothly when all is said and done. I'm guessing that a bit of time will make this deal even more interesting. Complex as it is, maybe a bit of cellaring will smooth it out a bit.

IBUnit63, Mar 20, 2009
Photo of AdmiralDiaz
4.33/5  rDev +12.8%

Poured from a 12oz bottle to pint glass.

A: Pours a very dark brown with a two-finger light brown head with poor retention but sticks around on the edges.

S: Very tart raspberry scent with roasted malts along with a white grape/zinfandel scent. Very complex scent that is bold and interestingly unique.

T: Hits with a light tart flavor from sour dark fruit, turning into sweet barley still with dark fruit that slowly turns into the semi oaked finish with strong hints of zinfandel with a bitter dryness accompanied by the tartness that has made itself present throughout the entire drink. Impressive that not much alcohol comes through, I'm not too surprised however the beer is quite complex.

M: Strong carbonation and a light body, bubbles dance across your tongue.

D: Pretty drinkable, taste is a little overpowering and a bottle or two would be about enough for me. Very interesting beer, I wish the oak came out some more, this would be amazing mellowed out and aged.

AdmiralDiaz, Mar 19, 2009
Photo of Crosling
2.5/5  rDev -34.9%

Dark brown color. Smooth, light tan foam. Nose shows a lot of brett, along with light notes of raspberry, cherry and oak from the Red Zin barrels. Flavor tastes like brett, alcohol, along with a lightly vinous character. Overall, it's quite dull and simplistic in body. Doesn't seem to have a lot of concentration or depth. Don't like the nose to well or flavor, also would prefer natural carbonation. Tasted again: The combo of brett & the vinous character really clash for me.

Crosling, Mar 16, 2009
Photo of jamie2dope
4.13/5  rDev +7.6%

Review number 355, here we go. Apparently the title has something to do with Belgium and horses. I will have to look into it further. Poured this one in to a Duvel oversized tulip glass. Appearance is pretty dark, just about black from what I can tell. Heading is about a finger and a half of tan froth. Smell starts off with some sour cherry, followed by some Brett funk. Smell remains lactic throughout, with wine notes here and there (perhaps from the Zinfandel barrels). Pepper and spice come in first with the taste, then some more lactic notes, then some dark berry, and finally ending on a very interesting prickly almost bitter taste. I am left thinking of figs with the aftertaste. Body is about medium, and drinkable considering the heightened abv. Still, more than one of these might be too much. Interesting is the main word that comes to mind when I ponder this beer. Tons and tons of complexity coming through as it warms. I would be interested to see how this ages. Maybe a once in a while beer considering the hefty price tag. Cheers to the guys at Avery for pulling out such an interesting brew.

jamie2dope, Mar 13, 2009
Photo of sevopie
4.05/5  rDev +5.5%

Appearance - Black, with hints of brown at the edge. Pours a frothy light brown head. Not at all what I was expecting from a wild ale... intriguing.

Smell - A few sour fruit notes, as well as a noticeable wine smell. I'm a big fan of Zinfandels, so I'm definitely ready to take a sip.

Taste - Smoky earthy notes start out, and you get a mild bit of the zinfandel on the tongue. The malt shines through more than I thought it would, and the sour is relatively subdued.

Mouthfeel - Medium to light on the weight, with a lot of carbonation.

Drinkability - Surprisingly high for this kind of beer. Usually one of the sour ones and I'm done for the night, but this is surprisingly mild and refreshing.

sevopie, Mar 13, 2009
Photo of riored4v
4.33/5  rDev +12.8%

Reviewed on 3/4/09

Poured into a Sam Adams glass. Dark brown body, 1.5 finger, tan head that is fluffy. Fades to no head.

Smell was sour, earthy, cherries and hints of the zinfandel barrels.

Taste consisted of zin barrels up front with a nice roastiness and sweetness. Semi tart, hints of cherry finish. Tartness is not overpowering. The brett adds a nice funk as well. Slight hint of chocolate and tannins as well.

Mouthfeel was a medium body. Lots of carbonation give a light finish. Slightly dry as well.

Drinkability was good. Well rounded flavors, not overly sour. 8.65% was nonexsistant.

Overall it was a really good wild ale, without being to "wild". Very drinkable and mildly tart. Could drink a few of these easily. Great complexity of flavors.

riored4v, Mar 09, 2009
Photo of br3wmeister
4.55/5  rDev +18.5%

A- Very dark red purple in color with a small light brown head that quickly fades to a thin cap leaving almost no lacing.

S- Very earthy sour brett aroma coming from this beer. Some caramel sweetness and tart berries are pretty dominate. Also hints of nuts and a light floral aroma. Much of the wine aromas have been tamed since I tried it at the brewery a couple of months ago.

T- Some tart berry flavors, raspberries and unripened strawberries. Some sweet caramel notes accompanied by dry bitter roasted barley flavors. Some oak comes through but does not make a big presence. Hint of wine fruitiness. Drys out at the end and leaves your palate with a nice tart bit.

M- This is a medium bodied beer with some great tartness and good carbonation. I very much enjoy the mouth feel.

Overall this is one of the better wilds I have had, though it is not as crazy and bold as some it has great subtle and complex flavors. This beer has a great mouth feel and drinkability that is hard to beet at 8.65% ABV. I am glad I have a few of these hanging around.

br3wmeister, Mar 08, 2009
Photo of rye726
4.38/5  rDev +14.1%

One of the better brews I've had from Avery. Their wild ales are getting closer and closer to Vinnie's quality. Pours a dark rosewood color with a lacy tan head. The nose has tart fruits, zinfandel grapes, oak and earthy barnyard funk. The taste is quite winey, well balanced by the sour fruit and musty brett presence. Clean crisp body has a dry finish. Taste could use some time to develop, but good stuff.

rye726, Mar 04, 2009
Photo of HopHead84
3.78/5  rDev -1.6%

The beer is dark, nearly black, with a one finger, beige head. The retention and lacing are both good.

The aroma is very nice. It smells strongly of tart and sour berries. The Zinfandel barrel aging is quite apparent and the Brett adds a lot of complexity. Does the fantastic aroma translate to the taste? I would have to say no. The tart and sour complexity I experienced in the aroma has lead to a disappointing flavor. The flavor in and of itself is not disappointing, but compared to the promise shown in the aroma, it is. There is a strong, sweet malt backbone with a very small amount of tartness. There is really no sourness to the flavor though there is a hint of barrel character. The complexity found in the aroma is just not found in the flavor.

Medium-full bodied with good carbonation.

HopHead84, Mar 02, 2009
Photo of dqderrick
4.28/5  rDev +11.5%

12oz bottle flown home from Colorado by mbunje. Thank you! Poured into a Chimay Goblet

Appearance - 4
Looks like a porter or dark belgian quad. Dark, dark blackish brown. 1/8" head, chocolate milk in color.

Smell - 5
Wow! I smell the barrel alright. Vinegar, smells a little like a barrel aged sour. I am loving the smell.

Taste - 4.5
Way more subtle than I was expecting. I don't taste the barrel quite as much as I smelled. Noticeably dry aftertaste, woody. Just a tinge of sweet. If I search hard, I can pick up the zinfandel flavor coming from the barrel. Not bad at all. Wild... I don't have much experience with wild ales. No experience with barrel aged wild ales.

Mouthfeel - 3.5
There's some action going on. It has a little more carbonation than I expected. The overall taste/mouthfeel makes a 12oz bottle almost more than enough.

Drinkability - 4
Hey, I enjoyed the experience. The overall balance of wild and barrel flavors surprised me. Would I buy it again? Only to share the experience with others. One 12oz bottle in a night is enough. Congratulations on a great beer and beer experience Avery. I look forward to your future Barrel-Aged Series brews... if I can get my hands on them.

dqderrick, Feb 28, 2009
Photo of mbunje
4.22/5  rDev +9.9%

12oz bottle purchased from Colorado liquor store (Superior Market) packed in bubble wrap with others and put on a plane to beautiful San Diego...then poured into a tulip glass.

A - Dark brown with a light tan head of about 1/2" that recedes rather quickly. Looks like a porter

S - Roasted Malt with a bit of funk from the Brett...a hint of the wine from the barrel age. Not overpowering

T - Super complex, with layers. Tart cider-like fruit up front, followed by a sweet roasted malt, and ends with a dry red wine finish.

MF - Medium bodied. Coats mouth with a tanin-like residue. Mild carbonation.

D - Surprisingly drinkable taste (in other words not over the top sour) and medium body sets this up to be a very drinkable wild ale. But at $9 per 12oz....prohibitively expensive.

Overall, I am not a big sour/wild ale fan, but I think this is a pretty good effort. Not too sour/vinegary (which I thought with the wine barrel aging we could get a vinegar). Really complex taste which is the whole point of this type of beer. So, well done Avery. Let's see what comes out in batch #2
of the Barrel Aged Series

mbunje, Feb 28, 2009
Photo of jamesm7485
4.97/5  rDev +29.4%

Havent reviewed a beer in quite awhile so figured this one merited a review.

The pour is almost like a thin porter in its appearance, very dark brown with some red hues when held up to the light.

I could smell the beer as soon as i opened it, felt like i was walking through the old fruit fields back on cape cod, raspberries, fig, grapes, lots of smoke and, some musty oak smell

The taste is amazing and is smell^10, rather sour but with an amazing malt and smoke back bone to back it up, edit( as its warmed up i get some some very dry zinfandel tones to it) GOD DAMN THIS IS GOOD

Very smooth and covers the tongue very nicely!

Very drinkable i could session these with ease but given the cost and the rarity, ill be happy with this one now and sticking one or hopefully more in the closet for future enjoyment, im REALLY looking forward to future installments in the series and am sad i didn't get to go to the release party.

jamesm7485, Feb 27, 2009
Photo of humanawho
4.58/5  rDev +19.3%

A - it has a nice deep brown black color with a good burnt color head with nice lacing

S - sweet and tangy aroma with woody aroma dominating there is some chocolate and roasty aromas as well, the tangy aroma with the chocolate is very interesting and i like it although it is a very tight nose

T - lots of subtle flavors, the tangyness isn't as pronounced but is still there, the chocolate dominates the flavor with some interesting woody and earthy elements with a burnt finish

M - very light and creamy

D - all of the subtle flavors make you want to keep drinking more to but it comes off as a very light beer

humanawho, Feb 26, 2009
Photo of jkendrick
3.9/5  rDev +1.6%

Appearance: Reddish-brown color with just a touch of light. Nice head that sticks around for a while and good lacing.

Aroma: Very yeasty. The sour yeasty smell definitely overshadows everything else, but there is some black pepper and dark fruits in there as well. I don't note too much alcohol though and no oak.

Mouthfeel: Medium bodied but almost slippery in the mouth. There is some prickly carbonation.

Taste: The first taste is that yeasty sourness. You can definitely taste the zinfandel in the finish, but it is almost sherry-like as well. Once the initial sourness fades a bit, you can taste black pepper spiciness and some dark fruits, most predominantly raspberries. I really didn't taste much alcohol at all which surprised me for the abv.

Overall impression: I don't have a of experience with bretts or sours in general. The strong yeastiness takes a bit of getting used to. But overall, I'd say the zinfandel barrels do a good job of balancing out the sourness, though not providing the oakiness I was expecting. I have no idea how this one will age, but this is obviously a very young bottle. I have another bottle and will update this review after it has had some time to age.

jkendrick, Feb 25, 2009
Photo of onecrazybreeze
4.47/5  rDev +16.4%

12oz bottle. Poured a very dark brown, with reddish tints. Smelled slightly sour, sort of like an oud bruin, with a very distinct Zinfandel (I'm assuming the Norman Zin it's aged in is amazing) smell. Taste was slightly sour, very balanced, not overpowering by any means, slightly fruity and spicy. It was apparent through flavor that it was aged in Zinfandel barrels. Overall I really enjoyed this beer, I couldn't see myself sitting down and drinking more than one or two in a sitting. I found it balanced yet exciting and am looking forward to Avery continuing in this direction.

onecrazybreeze, Feb 24, 2009
Photo of Rayek
4/5  rDev +4.2%

I picked this beer up at the brewery during its release party. It was definitely worth the special trip.

A: Deep chestnut brown with very active carbonation from small bubbles. Rocky whipped chocolate colored head has very good retention and leaves a generous lace.

S: Wow. Are they sure this is only 9.3% ABV? A heavy dose of brandy like alcohol starts things out. Dark fruits follow with raisins and currents. A big pepper bite comes on to round things out, while a hint of oak sits in the background.

T: Quite powerful and very wine like. The dark fruits hit fast with raisin, raspberry and black grape flavors. The alcohol theme continues with a warmth that saturates the system. Balance is provided by a combination of clove bitterness and sour lemon tartness. Oak from the nose continues in the background. Finishes very dry with a lingering puckering lemon flavor.

M: Medium body feels quite slick and syrupy. Carbonation is a bit too much at first, but settles down as the beer sits.

D: Definitely a sipping beer. Very different and perhaps a bit harsh at this young age. With that in mind, I kept an extra bottle in the cellar to age for a year.

Rayek, Feb 20, 2009
Photo of ArrogantB
3.68/5  rDev -4.2%

A friend shared a bottle of this and it was actually pretty interesting. Dark, almost black. Smells like some brett funk and tastes like grapes that are almost sour but not quite. This is not something I will seek out again but it was interesting to drink just because the flavor was pretty unique. It should be interesting to see the beers that Avery starts putting out in this series.

ArrogantB, Feb 20, 2009
Photo of Mebuzzard
3.38/5  rDev -12%

At the release party in Boulder. Bought a sixer, cracked one open.
Dark, yet thin looking, pour. Deep brown with illusions of black, but light passes through rather easily. Good head, nothing spectacular, but it had nice retention and lacing.
Smell was of weak whisky and wet pine. Not a bad smell, but nothing to write home about.
Taste up front was whisky and light peak, unsmoked. It was rather smooth and had a nice transition to a brown ale of sorts. A tad sweet, a tad bitter. Nice balance. almond came through in the end. Seems a bit young, and i think 3 years aged would be pretty good.

Mebuzzard, Feb 19, 2009
Photo of rowew
4.33/5  rDev +12.8%

Presentation: 12 oz bottle, gold foil over the neck. Label has a barrel with a horse, No 1 in our Barrel-Aged series. Bottled Feb 10. Very nice design.

Appearance: Poured into a large wine type glass, average tan colored head fades to just a bit of lacing. Color is a dark reddish brown, not much light gets through.

Smell: Instant yeasty whiff when I crack the bottle. Subtle in the glass, definitely a bit of that sour note I associate with brett. A bit of dark candied fruit.

Taste: The sour is subtle, but definitely there. The barrel aging hasn't added oak here, which is an interesting change - it seems to be more of a dark fruit flavor.

Overall impression: Lots of interesting flavors that I can't completely identify, but there is a very high depth of flavor. This is a very interesting beer - glad to have a few stashed away to see what some age does to them.

rowew, Feb 19, 2009
4.7/5  rDev +22.4%

Thanks a friend at Avery. Twelve ounce bottle poured into Sam Smith small glass. Shared with my wife.

A: Nice dark ruby brown body coated with toasted marshmallow colored head. Outstanding lacing after a good sturdy two fingers of pillowy head. Lacing hangs to glass leaving strong rings as you drink.

S: The smell is a little tight just after pouring. A good swirl and little warming bring tons of sweet floral, grassy notes. The oak is in there with some welcomed funk. I want cologne of this nature. I think wife might dig it. Complex and stellar.

T: Mellow and fruity without an overpowering aspect. Deep rich fruit on the front with a wonderful drying on the finish. You can pick up a lot of the Zinfandel character in the finish. I can't pick out just one flavor. The complex blends and mellow undertones rule the liquid.

M: Mouthfeel is wonderful. Not overly carbonated but some cellaring and mellowing would not hurt. Heavy on the tongue, rich and wet.

D: This beer will make me go broke. I shared this with the wife as instructed by the giver and now she's hooked. Drinkability is only hindered by the rarity.

Photo of Teke0611
4.25/5  rDev +10.7%

Poured from a bottle into a globe, two days after bottle date. Extreme thanks to my friends at Avery.

A- Much darker than mentally expected. In respect to translucence alone, quite similar to another favorite from Avery - the Czar. Perhaps just a wee-bit lighter? Of course, a very deep reddish-brown tone. It's so dark that it is tough to see if this is a filtered beer or not. I would assume it is filtered, coming from Avery. Retains head for quite some time, as poured into the standard-issue globe.

S- Floral. Maybe lavender, or even a slight perfume? Cherries. Very fruit-forward to start with, followed by a dry finish. Reminiscent of their 14th on the nose. No real barley on the nose. There seems to be a spice present on the nose that's used in Christmas cookies but that could be crazy.

T- It's not in your face like others are. Crisp and slightly dry. The smell is more dry than it actually is. Earthy. Mildly sour, but not tart. Good farmhouse funk - like a Dupont or de Dolle or older Fantome. Close to being greatly balanced - possibly a max of a few months to drop a tiny bit of the alcohol? I would like to try this again in a few months to see if this fades a little bit.

M- Refreshing. Not heavily carbonated - mild. Light acidic tones, not too sharp. Lingers for quite some time afterwards. Maybe the area it could improve, as the body is a little thin?

D- Give me another ten of these, and I could tell you for sure. But kidding aside, excellent for the style, and I would be happy to try another bottle or ten and let ya know for sure.

A tough beer to describe for sure. It is great to see the zin barrel add fruit rather than oak for the sake of oak. It would have been hugely interesting to see this beer done at a level approaching 12-13%. Definitely released at the right time. Tis a bit of shame that there was less than 700 cases produced, but a great start to a new series of beers from my favs from Boulder. Their next one, sorta called 'cherry mess' right now, has got me intrigued for sure.

Teke0611, Feb 13, 2009
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Brabant from Avery Brewing Company
86 out of 100 based on 372 ratings.