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Cuvee Series Three (Oak Aged Series) - Southern Tier Brewing Company

Not Rated.
Cuvee Series Three (Oak Aged Series)Cuvee Series Three (Oak Aged Series)

Educational use only; do not reuse.

136 Ratings
no score

(send 'em beer!)
Ratings: 136
Reviews: 72
rAvg: 3.21
pDev: 25.55%
Wants: 11
Gots: 51 | FT: 2
Brewed by:
Southern Tier Brewing Company visit their website
New York, United States

Style | ABV
American Strong Ale |  11.00% ABV

Availability: Limited (brewed once)

Notes & Commercial Description:
Beer added by: mcallister on 07-15-2008

This beer is retired; no longer brewed.

No notes at this time.
Beer: Ratings & Reviews
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Ratings: 136 | Reviews: 72
Photo of bort11
3.11/5  rDev -3.1%
look: 4 | smell: 3 | taste: 3 | feel: 3.5 | overall: 3

Poured into a Grimbergen goblet, there is a 1/4" tan head. Good retention on the foam, but not much in the way of lacing. Body color is a dark, yet clear, ruby red hue.

Smell is a sharp oak wood resin with a sweet dried cherry. Small hints of vanilla. Through it all, the alcohol is very noticeable. The taste has more cherries in it than the smell. There is a candy sweetness that accentuates the vanilla notes from the oak. This is also a very warm beer from the alcohol. The wood flavoring wit the alcohol borders on overwhelming.

So over all, if you like oak-aged beers, I would give this a try. If you do like wood, I would go even further and age this for another year or two to mellow out the alcohol heat.

Photo of ThreeDimesDown
3.08/5  rDev -4%
look: 3.5 | smell: 3 | taste: 3 | feel: 3.5 | overall: 3

Pours a clear, bright amber with an off white head that dissipates very quickly to nothing. The color was impressive, the lack of head was not so.

Aromas of light butterscotch, light fruits, and a slight hint of pine hops. Minerally with a whiff of alchohol.

Taste is sweet, very sweet...candied sugar, dried berries, honey, oak, caramel and a touch of vanilla. The sweetness is almost over-bearing.

Medium mouthfeel was sticky, syrup-like with high carbonation. ABV% was pretty well hidden in the taste.

Overall this is not a beer I'd look for again, it's just too sweet. It seems like this would be best suited as an after-dinner dessert brew.

Photo of Chaney
2.61/5  rDev -18.7%
look: 3.5 | smell: 2.5 | taste: 2.5 | feel: 3 | overall: 2.5

I poured a few ounces into a Williamsburg Alewerks sample glass.

A: A slight head that was almost non-existent, and a see-through maroon colored brew that was just waiting to be consumed!

S: A bit of oak, candy sugar, and malt. Supposedly there was some coconut in here, but I honestly couldn't detect any.

T: An oaked-aged sugar bomb for sure. After a few sips, the syrupy, sugary elements started to grate on me.

M: The sugar coated the mouth rather intensely and in a very unpleasant way. The carbonation was extremely low, which only added to my frustration.

O: I'm glad I got to try this, but I'm also glad that it's going to be retired within the next year or so.

Photo of GbVDave
3.2/5  rDev -0.3%
look: 3 | smell: 3 | taste: 3.5 | feel: 3 | overall: 3

Served in a goblet at The Funky Buddha 3/4/11. Thanks to HeatherAnn, HollyAnn, and Keith for the assist!

A: Served a deep, dark russet color with not a trace of head on top. Instead, it came to the table with a thick ring and whispy skim. A few strands of lace were left behind.

S: Huge nose full of caramel drenched cherries. A bit of spicy oak tries to get through but the sweetness keeps it down.

T: Same as above. Caramel and cherry with a dusting of cocoa and spicy oak.

M: Slick, oily, sweetness that gets pretty tiring by the end of the glass. Thankfully I had some help with this one!

D: I wondered if the third in the Cuvee series would be better than the first two but alas, it isn't. Sorry, but no.

Photo of OWSLEY069
3.78/5  rDev +17.8%
look: 4 | smell: 3.5 | taste: 4 | feel: 4 | overall: 3.5

Pours a clean orange-ish to amber color with a light tan head. In the aroma, sweet and tart fruitiness, somewhat like white grapes. In the taste, Belgian candy sugar, fruity, and a small tartness. A small bite and medium bodied mouthfeel, with a small dry sugar and white grape in the aftertaste. A bit boozy, but a nice small tartness. Not bad at all.

Photo of caseyf
2.5/5  rDev -22.1%
look: 4 | smell: 4 | taste: 2 | feel: 2 | overall: 1.5

I really loved the ST Cuvee 1 and I splurged for the 3rd after reading the reviews on BA. I know that some people aren't into the over-the-top ST beers and I wrote off the negative reviews.

This is not a great beer. Flat, sweet, lopsided. Really tough to drink, and I'm a fan of sweet and malty. More hop bitterness, more carbonation, and more dryness would have helped me.

Very disappointing given how much I liked the first from the Oak Aged series. I hate to say it, but save your money.

Photo of prototypic
2.83/5  rDev -11.8%
look: 3.5 | smell: 3 | taste: 2.5 | feel: 4 | overall: 2.5

Cuvee Three pours a deep copper color. It's very clear, and has bright crimson highlights with backlighting. It's a nice color. A cream colored head caps it off and stands about a finger and a half tall. Retention was relatively short. Lacing was very, very light. Maybe the 11% abv was too much for it.

The nose is very average. It smells sweet and caramel heavy. No big shock there. There's some oak and vanilla lingering about. They make things a little interesting. Cherry is strong, and gives it a medicinal aroma. Not a good thing. Alcohol is strong in the mix. Definitely comes across as boozy. It doesn't smell overtly bad, but it's not far off. Average at best.

The flavor is actually below average. It does have a substantial caramel malt base that is rather sweet. The oak aging definitely added oak and vanilla flavors. They're present, but I'm not sure that they complement much. Cherry is definitely noted and makes it quite cough syrup-esque. There's also a hint of a nutty flavor, but it doesn't add anything. Alcohol is definitely strong and warm. Finishes boozy and medicinal. Eh. Not good.

Cuvee Three has a medium body that leans full with warming. For what it's worth at this point, the feel is good. Carbonation is light and works well. Drinkability is below average. Despite its nice feel, the flavor isn't good enough to encourage consumption. It's also big and very warm. A 22 ounce is way too big of a serving size.

I'm honestly not sure what I was thinking when I bought this bottle. Cuvee One and Two both were disappointing. Perhaps I was hoping that a blend of two negatives would equal a positive. Unfortunately, that isn't the case here. Cuvee Three is my least favorite of the bunch. Its worst qualities are that it's medicinal and too boozy. I'm a fan of Southern Tier, but not of this series. Just scrap it and do not revisit.

Photo of Brad007
4.08/5  rDev +27.1%
look: 4.5 | smell: 4 | taste: 4 | feel: 4.5 | overall: 4

I've had this beer for a while now. Time to dig in and give it a taste.

Pours a nice burgundy color into my glass. Bright and yet, so inviting. What else can I say?

A wisp of oak is followed by cherry in the nose. Not overpowering. Simple enough to start with.

Wow. Sweet with cherry,plum and apple notes. The oak is safely at the back of the palate. A bit of alcohol warmth to heat up the throat. Interesting mix of flavors.

Mouthfeel is full of lingering cherry and apple. Oak adds more to the texture with a "woody" feel. Alcohol warmth is surprisingly not as strong as originally thought.

Complex and yet, quite drinkable for 11%. It's certainly in league with other "strong ales" in challenging the palate. Kind of like OA Arrogant Bastard but without the excessive alcohol heat and hops.

Photo of Gambrinus1184
4.2/5  rDev +30.8%
look: 4 | smell: 4 | taste: 4.5 | feel: 4 | overall: 4

Served on-tap at Plan B in West Hartford, Conn.

A: Bold, deep amber color with slight ruby highlights showing great clarity and dense head of off-white foam. Looks pretty viscous and slightly mysterious with a chilled haze.

S: Complex bouquet of fruity malts and floral, bitter hops. There are apples, pears, citrus fruits and berry notes floating around this strong ale, with a whiff of alcohol to boot.

T: Rich, fruity malt complex up front showing signs of plum, raisin and lighter apple and citrus tones. The alcohol comes in around mid palate with a warming flavor before finishing with a fruity, herbal hop bitterness that lingers with some residual alcohol burn. The woody, tobacco and smooth oak flavors are at play the whole time.

M: Rich, full bodied and sweet brew. It's a little hot and boozy, but as a sipper, it's mighty fine.

D: The 11% ABV and rich, complex flavors of the Cuvee will make you want to sip on it and contemplate the play of flavors. Approach it in anything greater than tastes and the big, boozy flavor might turn you off. I'd pop a bomber sometime to share with those who appreciate it's fine, mellow, oaky qualities.

Photo of yourefragile
1.7/5  rDev -47%
look: 3 | smell: 3 | taste: 1 | feel: 2 | overall: 1

On tap at Lures.

Why me? Whyyy? Ugh, I think I finally found something more offensive to my palate than ST's cherry saison. This was devastatingly sweet, with vanilla and coconut along with some odd, misplaced bitterness. After a few sips this went straight down the drain. Whatever guys, this was rank.

Photo of AdamBear
1.67/5  rDev -48%
look: 4.5 | smell: 2.5 | taste: 1 | feel: 2 | overall: 1

Thanks to BigBlacke for getting ahold of this for me!

A-reddish chestnut with a thin cream colored head. looks beautiful!

S-smells like sweet syrup with some vanilla and oak. has a medium strength. it smells unique!

T-oh my...this beer i will never forget. it comes in with a taste of vanilla and oak and then it transforms and in to a large and odd bitterness. the after-taste has a bit of cinnamon spice but more than anything it reminds me of cough syrup...seriously...this whole beer reminds me exactly of cough syrup

M-i want to not the mouth-feel but i'm afraid to take another sip. well here i go...
it has a medium carbonation with a gross syrupy finish


Photo of mdfb79
3.16/5  rDev -1.6%
look: 4 | smell: 3 | taste: 3 | feel: 4 | overall: 3

Poured from a 22 oz. bottle into my Duvel tulip. Picked this up at Ricks last weekend. Wasn't the biggest fan of 1, but 2 was an improvement so figured I'd check out 3.

a - Pours a dark reddish amber color with two inches of off white head and moderate carbonation evident. No head retention and light lacing on the glass.

s - Smells of oak, coconuts, fruity malts, caramel malts, and light vanilla. The coconuts are very strong here. Smell is interesting; the coconuts and oak dominate it.

t - Tastes of coconuts, caramel malts, oak, vanilla, fruity malts, alcohol, toffee, and some dark fruits or cherries. Again, coconuts dominate the taste.

m - Medium body and low to moderate carbonation. Smooth and creamy body, pretty nice.

d - An interesting beer, but a bit odd. I wasn't expecting so much coconut in the smell and taste; it didn't seem to mix too well together. The mouthfeel was nice but I wouldn't buy it again. I thought this was worse than Cuvee Series 2, and about on par with Cuvee Series 1, though it had more coconut than 1.

Photo of Avagadro
1.83/5  rDev -43%
look: 3.5 | smell: 3 | taste: 1 | feel: 3 | overall: 1

A: Ruby in color, clear body, decent head given the ABV. Overall, a fine looking ale.

S: Bouquet is well presented, with honey, cantaloupe, and cinnamon clashing in an excessively sweet mess.

T: Sweet cannot begin to describe this beer. Even "cloying" seems to fall short. There are plenty of good flavors here (vanilla, creme brulee, melon) but this beer is just too damn sweet to enjoy them.

M: Heavy, sticky, flabby...

D: I've read a few other reviews of this beer that address this beer's sweetness, but few have given the score to back it up. I am fairly open minded to the flavors a beer can /should posses, but this is just a mess. Avoid at all cost.

Photo of jwinship83
3.4/5  rDev +5.9%
look: 3.5 | smell: 3.5 | taste: 3.5 | feel: 3.5 | overall: 3

on tap at the grumpy bulldog in naperville. 10oz snifter.

A- its brought to me in a big eddy snifter looking very dark brown colored body with a pretty much nonexistent head. what little there is looks like a crown of khaki colored bubbles. no lacing left behind.

S- sweet caramel malts and brown sugar are the first things to hit my nose. after that i get a bunch of vanilla and coconut from the oak. alcohol and toffee are also quite prevalent. slightly fruity.

T- very sweet right off the bat. plenty of toffee, caramel, and brown sugar. after that i pick out some cherries and pears. the oak comes through with plenty of force. lots of coconut and vanilla. alcohol and faded hops at the end.

M- medium bodied, maybe bordering on full. a low level of carbonation makes this quite syrupy. moderate to strong warming from the alcohol. decently smooth.

D- i dont think i could have ordered another one. it didnt thrill me, and then i found out that this little snifter cost $9. ouch. definitely wont buy another at that price.

Photo of garbercury
3.65/5  rDev +13.7%
look: 4 | smell: 4 | taste: 3.5 | feel: 3.5 | overall: 3.5

Drunk. Steeler pre-game-ish...night before, on a bender...Take it for what it is worth...

A---Amber-reddish, not much lacing or carbonation but good.

S--Fruity esters in this one, lots of fruits on the nose, nice.

T--Continues with the flavors of raisin, grape, malt. Not too much oak, in fact, very little...Cloying!

M--Smooth feel.

D--Heavy, needs some time, super sweet...Stupid to open this so young. This needs a year or two before you open...Go Steelers!

Photo of lordofthewiens
3.35/5  rDev +4.4%
look: 4 | smell: 4 | taste: 3.5 | feel: 2.5 | overall: 2.5

A 22oz bottle poured into a snifter.
Dark amber color, thin off-white head. A little bit of lace.
Oaky, vanilla aroma. Sweet caramel.
Caramel, fruity, some hop bitterness. Kind of understated.
This beer was way too sweet. So sweet that it became not very enjoyable.

Photo of Gehrig
4.17/5  rDev +29.9%
look: 4 | smell: 4.5 | taste: 4 | feel: 3.5 | overall: 4.5

Enjoyed on tap at the brilliant Blind Pig in downtown Champaign.

Two frothy fingers of off-white foam top a clear amber-ruby body; somewhat fleeting head duration, and moderate lacing on the splendid Boulevard tulip. The oak emerges prominently in the smell, really enhancing the various aromas. It is very fruity--lots of berry, maraschino cherry--with some dark chocolate, and ginger with the oak; wonderful nose, very floral.

Good taste, heavy on the fruit. The oak is nice and slightly more subdued than I would have expected from the smell; not a bad thing. Well-hopped, it is also somewhat less malty than many strong ales I've had. This leaves the mouthfeel a little thin; it is not a full, robust texture. The taste is quite good, no doubt and, for its potency (11% ABV), I didn't find this a sipper at all. It is very flavorful, but lacked that strong ale heft in texture I really enjoy.

Overall, Cuvee Series Three is really good beer, surprisingly sweet and, while not overly complex, certainly distinct and creative enough to satisfy most ST fans. Good, innovative beer from one of the very best breweries around.

Photo of Billolick
3.2/5  rDev -0.3%
look: 3.5 | smell: 3.5 | taste: 3 | feel: 3.5 | overall: 3

Bomber, comes dressed up in a box, $11.99 @ Cable Bev. in Bardonia (Rockland County), NY. No freshness/vintage info offered.

Pours clear, glowing medium amber with a distinct reddish, slightly warmingly golden hue. Minor head, off white in color, fine bubble in nature and leaving just the slightest of lace.

Fruity sweet nose, with some vanilla and rum.

The obvious problem with this one is...its too damn sweet....near cloyingly so...more fruit, some vanilla infused rum, but beneath it all, unfortunatly cough syrup comes to mind. Not my favorite, lots of better beer out there...

Photo of Vierenner
3/5  rDev -6.5%
look: 4 | smell: 4 | taste: 2.5 | feel: 3 | overall: 2.5

If not for the hops I might think I was drinking a carbonated after dinner liqueur, 22 ounces of it. I like a sweeter beer but this is over the top. I don't remember the Series Two batch being nearly so sweet ... perhaps my taste has just become more refined since then!

Photo of beersensei305
3.25/5  rDev +1.2%
look: 3.5 | smell: 3.5 | taste: 3.5 | feel: 3 | overall: 2.5

Live review:

A: Pours a clean amber, with a tan head tat foams big then reduces to an average size no real lacing around the glass

S: Sweet woody a little booze some caramel

T: Nutty coocnt flavor off the first sip- after reading the box it came in must be from the first series, I've never had a cocnut beer. nuttiness must be almond. burnt caramel, oakyness and then bitter either from hops or wood

M: Rather light but creamy sliky average carbonation- syrupy sticky when it dries

D: Different. I have never had a coconut beer before very different. worthy of trying. complex in the catergory as Dogfish's immort ale

Photo of oglmcdgl
2.23/5  rDev -30.5%
look: 3 | smell: 2.5 | taste: 2 | feel: 2.5 | overall: 2

On tap at terrace taproom.

A- small fizz of off white head on arrival that settles quickly leaving only a small wisp on top. Dark bronze orange brown in color with a nice glow to it.

S- sweet caramel and toffee and lots of them. Small vanilla oaky touch and light fruity flair.

T- super sweet with loads of caramel and toffee just too much really. The oak doesn't make to big of an impression. Bits of sweet candied fruits and vanilla. Slight hints of wheat bread at times.

M- on the fuller side of medium in body with a light carb. Not really any hint of the abv but its almost needs it how sweet it is.

D- way to sweet completely over powering. Not one ill try again.

Photo of Spider889
1.96/5  rDev -38.9%
look: 3 | smell: 2 | taste: 1.5 | feel: 4 | overall: 1.5

Had this on tap at Bodega. Review from notes.

Geeze, this was an overpriced beer that purported to be something of significance. What a disappointment.

Deep cherrywood color with a small cap of white dander foam. Left bits of webbed lace on the odd Bodega 10oz tulip.

Smell was really lacking. Mildly sweet. Some vanilla and oak. A bit ho-hum to be honest.

The flavor was sweet as hell. This beer would do well to continue aging on some fruit and brettonmyces or something. really young and brash imo. Toasted coconut and very strong hazelnut. Damn it, I HATE hazelnut. Ah, 'tis true. I just can't get over the sweetness though, ugh, it's really awful. There's a mild amount of vanilla and a dry oaky finish.

Drinkability? A rare/hard-to-find beer with high abv and super sweet aroma and flavor profiles makes for horribly poor drinkability in my book.

I was sorely disappointed here, and i love most ST offerings. I think I'll pass on Cuvee Series Four...

Photo of Mavajo
2.6/5  rDev -19%
look: 4 | smell: 4 | taste: 2 | feel: 4 | overall: 1

Amber color with a moderate cream/white head.

Nose has notes of herbal/floral, zesty tangerine characteristics. Oak notes back it all up. Decent nose - interesting.

Taste - wowzers. The wheels are falling off here. This is not enjoyable. Very sweet, with strong caramel malt and toffee characteristics and oak notes - backed up by a sort of herbal/floral undertone. There's an unpleasant bitter aftertaste here that just lingers and lingers on the palate. When it was cold, it was at least drinkable - as it warmed, though, this turned into a disaster. Not in the least bit enjoyable. I soldiered on through about half the bottle, but I'm gonna have to dump the rest - and this is after already drinking a bomber of Black Butte. If a bomber of ~10% can't make a beer drinkable, that beer has problems.

Mouthfeel is decent in the thickness and carbonation department. Very sticky though.

Overall, this beer is a failure in the taste department. I find nothing redeeming about this brew, and I would not drink it again even if it was offered for free. Extremely disappointed in Southern Tier.

Photo of rlee1390
3.76/5  rDev +17.1%
look: 4.5 | smell: 3.5 | taste: 4 | feel: 3.5 | overall: 3.5

A-Dark amber (not as dark/red as Number Two). Has about a one finger head that leaves some lacing

S-Very sweet smelling; orange, lemon, vanilla

T-The same sweet smells are present in the taste. The finish is not very bitter. Also lacking the oak tones that were prominent in the Number 2.

M-Medium bodied, slightly creamy

D-Sweetness limits the drinkability but better than the Number Two. If I can get my hands on Number One I'll try and update this compared to One, but the reviews for One are worse than this one.

Photo of alleykatking
3.03/5  rDev -5.6%
look: 3.5 | smell: 3 | taste: 3 | feel: 3 | overall: 3

Poured from 22oz bottle.

A- Pours a reddish brown color. One finger off white head shows light retention dying to whisps of foam on the top of the beer. Some long streaks of lace on the sides of the glass.

S- To be honest I get a shit ton of pineapple notes on this. Almost overpowering in the pineapple. There is a light sweetness as far as caramel malts go. Don't really get much else and nothing really stands out in the beer. Almost to sickly sweet and one sided.

T- Tons of caramel malts in the front of this kick off the sweet rush. Lots of pineapple like flavors with a hint of toffee malts in the middle of the beer. Light oak notes in the very ending with some alcohol..well some sweet alcohol in the ending.

M- Medium heavy mouthfeel. Carbonation is a little light overall I would say. Sweet malts and pineapple left on the palate. Aftertaste is a lot of pineapple and sweet alcohol. Medium heavy drying on the palate from the alcohol. Flavors were one dimensional and sickly sweet a lot of the time. No off flavors could be detected.

D- This beer is just average. It comes off very sweet at times but that just cuts back on drinkability. The ABV is hidden well but only because the sugary sweetness overtakes everything. Higher ABV limits this beer but the sweetness really kills this beer for me.

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Cuvee Series Three (Oak Aged Series) from Southern Tier Brewing Company
74 out of 100 based on 136 ratings.