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Allagash Interlude - Allagash Brewing Company

Not Rated.
Allagash InterludeAllagash Interlude

Displayed for educational use only; do not reuse.

1,032 Ratings

(view ratings)
Ratings: 1,032
Reviews: 413
rAvg: 4.22
pDev: 10.43%
Wants: 257
Gots: 175 | FT: 12
Brewed by:
Allagash Brewing Company visit their website
Maine, United States

Style | ABV
Saison / Farmhouse Ale |  9.50% ABV

Availability: Rotating

Notes/Commercial Description:
Two yeast strains were used to create this unique 9.5% ABV Belgian style ale. The first, a Belgian farmhouse yeast, establishes the flavor foundations of a classic Belgian-style ale. The second, a house strain of Brettanomyces yeast, brings it to the next level contributing an intriguing myriad of flavors including pear, apricot, graham cracker, and bread crust. Finally, a portion of the Interlude is aged in French Merlot and Sirah oak barrels, which impart a distinctive vinous plum character and a drying, almost tannic finish.

(Beer added by: brewandbbq on 01-15-2006)
Beer: Ratings & Reviews
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Ratings: 1,032 | Reviews: 413 | Display Reviews Only:
Photo of joshsbeerblog
3.5/5  rDev -17.1%
look: 4 | smell: 4 | taste: 3 | feel: 3.5 | overall: 4

copper-orange in color with a lot of carbonation. aroma is very interesting: grapes, candy sugar, vinegar, dog (yes, i said, dog), and more than anything else, red wine. yeast, tart apples, some hops and alcohol registered on my taste buds.

i actually found the taste to be pretty disappointing after such a good start. like i said, this is a lively beer, to the point that it has champagne like qualities. still enjoyed this beer.

joshsbeerblog, Feb 10, 2009
Photo of roopy40
3.93/5  rDev -6.9%
look: 4.5 | smell: 4 | taste: 4 | feel: 3 | overall: 4

Appearance - Poured a golden red color with a small white head that dissipated quickly.

Smell - Smelled like fruit and yeast. Pears definitely, perhaps apricot.

Taste - Fruit again as expected from the smell. I taste a slight hint of raisin, maybe a dark colored grape.

Mouthfeel - Not as heavy as I expected when I knew it was oak aged, but definitely sharp and darting finish, not very carbonated, which I think would take this to the proper level.

Overall - I liked the beer very much, but I don't know what to expect since I haven't had many Belgian Strong Pale Ales. I would try this again and suggest it for someone who's into Belgian beers in a big way.

roopy40, Jan 23, 2009
Photo of CrellMoset
4.2/5  rDev -0.5%
look: 3.5 | smell: 4 | taste: 4.5 | feel: 4 | overall: 4

Allagash Interlude, on tap at Rustico, Alexandria, VA. Served in a fitted glass of some sort, strangely shaped - we'll call it a conic 10 oz.

Appearance: Arrives a dirty-looking, slightly hazy yellow amber-bodied brew with practically no head. There's only the faintest dusting sitting atop this one, and almost no collar or lacing as I drink. For a near-double digit, lightly hopped wild ale, I suppose that's not to be unexpected, no?

Aroma: Fruit, funk, and wood about rounds it up, but that doesn't do it justice. The fruits are fairly varied, though cherries, both tart and sweet, are strong upfront, though plenty of other light, semi-sweet/semi-sour fruity esters dance among the strong cherry notes and the earthy, green wood notes. The funk intensifies as it warms, though never becomes dominating or distracting. A nice balance of solid aromas.

Taste: Mild, tart funk mingles well with slightly sour fruity notes, apple skins and sweet and sour cherry. There's plenty of grassy, hay-like notes and a definite hint of wood that are having a delicious earthy orgy in this one, and - though it's not sweet - it's not quite dry either. Very enjoyable and balanced.

Mouthfeel: Medium bodied, even and full, and not crisp but not dull or lifeless either. Perfectly pleasant and average.

Drinkability: This one improved greatly as it warmed, but also as I "got into it," and after about half the glass, I was really enjoying it. This is a well-crafted and unique beer, exactly what I'd expect from Allagash, balanced and tasty. Alcohol is nowhere to be found, at least to the senses, and if you don't like the "sour bombs," this is the wild ale for you.

CrellMoset, Jan 19, 2009
Photo of IBUnit63
4.15/5  rDev -1.7%
look: 4 | smell: 4.5 | taste: 4 | feel: 4.5 | overall: 4

August 2008 corked and caged 750. Quiet little pop of the cork and into a Duvel tulip.

Very nice honey color with only a slight haze topped by almost bluish Champagne 1/2-finger head that reduces to yeasty wisps quickly. Moderate carbonation rises steadily. Next couple of pours - slightly bigger head but not significantly.

The wine barrel aging shows - nice oak with dry tannic grape feel. Brett is solid but austere at first - there's a Champagne yeast electricity to this. Mild hop pine with a little soap and leather - maybe not "horse blanket" but this time "horse saddle." Good, dry woody scent. Let this warm a bit 'cause the sour notes really take a while to emerge.

The funk is definitely there from the Brett but at first it's not as sour as expected - almost a bit of a light dessert wine feel - not an Aussie muscat sticky or anything but more the tone of a Moscato d'Asti. Very woody - carbonation brings out very light oak and accompanying vanilla. At first pour a little colder than ideal the vanilla sweetness elbows out the sourness of the Brett, so be sure this warms quite a bit to get the fullness of the sour and the Saison yeast as well.

The feel is a little strange at first - a little Saison, a little sour and a little Belgian Strong Pale Ale. First blush - a bit of all three but not enough of either one. Again, let this warm to let the true funk and sour tang emerge and round it all out.

At first I didn't find myself rushing to finish this one, but letting it warm for about 20-30 minutes I was all over it. To me, this deal can't be too warm, but if it's colder you're really missing out. Well-constructed.

IBUnit63, Jan 15, 2009
Photo of corey0212
4.45/5  rDev +5.5%
look: 4.5 | smell: 5 | taste: 4.5 | feel: 4 | overall: 4

Pours a glowing honey/golden color, rapidly diminishing off-white head leaves just a handful of spots on the glass. The smells coming out of the glass are almost more than I can even process...sourness, earthy, funky, some sugary vanilla aromas...wow! And amazingly enough, all the aromas are showing up in the flavors, with some more fruitiness throwing down. Straddling the line between full-bodied and the heavy end of medium-bodied, some spicy alcohol on the lips, and belly-warming alcohol as well. I need more of this.

corey0212, Jan 12, 2009
Photo of SuperWhite92
4.58/5  rDev +8.5%
look: 3.5 | smell: 4.5 | taste: 5 | feel: 4.5 | overall: 4

Pours just shy of an amber color with a brilliant white head on top. Smells strongly of brett funk with a hint of oak barrel as well. Tastes slightly sour and tart, full of tannins. Somewhat fruity, and with a crisp belgian pale backbone holding it all together. Really an amazing beer. Mouthfeel matches the smell and drinkability is phenomenal. My favorite allagash brew so far. I wish this were more available to me.

SuperWhite92, Jan 08, 2009
Photo of dino213aa
4.88/5  rDev +15.6%
look: 4.5 | smell: 5 | taste: 5 | feel: 5 | overall: 4.5

This review is of the January 2007 edition.

A: Hazy with a ruddy amber complexion. Minimal head which dissipates quickly. Minimal even lacing. The hue is basically perfect for a farmhouse ale.

S: An incredibly fruity and funky bouquet that can be smelled immediately after uncorking. I stored this beer chilled and still it proved beautifully aromatic. There is a wonderfully subtle floral note under some stronger fruit notes.

T&M: Sometimes nuanced flavors are great, but this brew delivers exactly what you paid for. The sourness of the brett and farmhouse yeasts, the fruit of the merlot and the tannin of syrah. This brew is not timid. As for the mouthfeel, it's everything a farmhouse brew should be. Crisp yet full-bodied. Body and alcohol perfectly balanced in a way most breweries cannot achieve. Even the aftertaste is perfectly fruity and tart and pleasant.

D: This beer is incredibly drinkable and gratifying. My only slight complaints are in the lack of head and the price point. At $23 a bottle, I don't see myself buying this one as much as I'd like.

dino213aa, Jan 06, 2009
Photo of evantwomey
3.93/5  rDev -6.9%
look: 3.5 | smell: 5 | taste: 4 | feel: 3.5 | overall: 3

Split a 750 ml bottle w/ my brother. Pours with a fairly small, white head that dissipates after a few minutes into a thin layer. Leaves a bit of lacing on the glass. Color is a gold/amber, pretty clear, effervescent. Smell is out of this world. Some definite wild-yeast aromas going on - reminds me of a gueuze in a lot of ways. Aroma is some lemon, mixed with a bit of jolly rancher green apple and some watermelon. Taste falls a bit flat. The funky sourness promised by the nose isn't really reflected in the taste. Taste is some caramel and some spicy hops, but the finish is a touch of sourness and substantial alcohol burn. The booziness is fairly prominent and hurts the drinkability. But the aroma is fantastic. Definitely worth trying, especially since they used a Brettanomyces strain from Maine. If they could tame the alcohol a bit and get just a touch more sourness, this would be world-class.

evantwomey, Jan 02, 2009
Photo of astrasday
4.15/5  rDev -1.7%
look: 4 | smell: 4 | taste: 4 | feel: 4.5 | overall: 4.5

Poured this one from a 750 ml. bottle into an oversized wine glass. Hazy golden/orange hue with white head that quickly dissipates. No lacing.

Smell is quite complex. Fruits: over-ripe pineapple, apples and white grapes. Wood, yeast and (oddly enough) bubble gum. A tinge of alcohol. In one word--sweet.

Taste has my head spinning. What is going on in there? Sweet yeast gives way to a sour, white wine flavor where the oak can easily be discerned. Tannins are present as well with just a light tinge of bitterness. The finish, ultimately warms up to a sweet and sour flavor that is quite enjoyable.

Mouthfeel is nearly perfect. Crisp but full at the same time. Carbonation is just what you want from a BSPA: tight and unobtrusive.

A highly drinkable offering. While you can't necessarily taste the 9.5% ABV, there is a boozy quality that makes me want to pace myself. A solid beer--especially when considering the delicate nature of a belgian strong aged in oak.

astrasday, Dec 28, 2008
Photo of jwjon1
3.38/5  rDev -19.9%
look: 4.5 | smell: 4 | taste: 3 | feel: 4 | overall: 3

2008 Batch. CCRIDA's review nailed it. Wine barrel aged, brett-ridden beers can be heavenly. For my palate, this falls short. I was hoping for a vinous delight, but there was no trace of wine-like qualities to be found save for wood tannin. An acidic backbone would help, and would make this a much more enjoyable quaff.

jwjon1, Dec 14, 2008
Photo of Beerbuddha
4.75/5  rDev +12.6%
look: 5 | smell: 4.5 | taste: 5 | feel: 4.5 | overall: 4.5

Appearance: This beer poured a nice golden-ruby reddish color with a huge fluffy off white cloud of head.

Smell: The smell was dominated by a musty funkiness(in a good way) with nice hints of fruit and yeast.

Taste: Despite the strong funkiness of the beer I was still able to detect a vinous quality which I assume was from the Merlot and Sirah barrels. The wine added hints of white grapes while the yeast used added a nice sourness to it. Nice hints of cloves and pepper were also detected.

Mouthfeel: Nice crisp and tart finish with a medium body.

Overall: This beer is incredible. I only wish we could get this in New Orleans.

Beerbuddha, Dec 09, 2008
Photo of corby112
4.5/5  rDev +6.6%
look: 3.5 | smell: 4.5 | taste: 4.5 | feel: 4 | overall: 5

Pours a cloudy light golden amber color with a thin white head that quickly fades and some visible bubbly carbonation. Aroma is funky with lots of sour oak, with some dark cherry, strawberry, vanilla and hop notes. Very funkt and tart oaky flavor with plenty of hops and crisp apple and strawberry fruit flavor. Nice balanced and very quaffable. Excellent.

corby112, Dec 06, 2008
Photo of froghop
3.8/5  rDev -10%
look: 3 | smell: 3.5 | taste: 4 | feel: 3.5 | overall: 4

pours a cloudy dark orange-brown with a thin off-white head that dissipates quickly.

smell is of sour malt, some citrus, floral, spice, and pepper.

taste is tart, sour malt, fruit, some spice, pepper, aftertaste is very spicy.

overall a good brew that is heavey on the spice

froghop, Nov 29, 2008
Photo of tmoneyba
3.9/5  rDev -7.6%
look: 4 | smell: 4 | taste: 4 | feel: 3 | overall: 4

Bomber corked bottle.

Poured a deep amber color with a small rocky off-white head that diminished slowly and produced good lacing. Heavy tart fruity and cask aroma. Medium body with an oily texture. Good complex tart fruity with a small bitter finish of long duration.

Good start, soft finish.

tmoneyba, Nov 23, 2008
Photo of dnichols
4.33/5  rDev +2.6%
look: 4 | smell: 4.5 | taste: 4.5 | feel: 4 | overall: 4

A: It poured a dark amber body with a one finger off white head. The head had decent retention and supported spotty and leggy lacing.

S: It began with a nice rich sweet toasted malt with a funky yeasts aroma and lots of floral and citrus hop aromas.

T: The flavors are all influenced by the wine barrels. The toasted malts had a funkiness that blended well with the flavor of tart ripe cherries and plums. There was a earthiness to the backside that fit well with the zesty spices.

M: It was medium bodied with lots of carbonation, zesty spices and dry finish. It was clean and warm in the end with only a slight sweet-tart after flavor.

D: This is a nice complex beer best served a at cellar temperature and sipped to allow its complex flavors to come to the front. Not a session beer but one for an evening reading a good novel by a fireplace.

dnichols, Oct 27, 2008
Photo of Beerzebub
4.8/5  rDev +13.7%
look: 4 | smell: 5 | taste: 5 | feel: 4.5 | overall: 4.5

Oct 2, 2008:

December 2007 bottle, poured in a big wine glass at 57 F/ 14 C.

Deep golden-orange, small off-white head, nice classic looking lace.

Smells strongly fruity, fresh and bright, deep and complex. Toasty cedarlike wood and creamy vanilla are perfectly integrated with custardy tropical fruit, apple, honey, flowers, leather... Outstanding, one of the best aromas I have experienced.

Tastes like fresh and dried tropical fruits, honey, wood, vanilla. A touch of tartness. A modicum of minty grassy hop flavor. Brown apple slowly develops. Perfect balance. Rich and wonderful. Long complex fruity finish.

Full soft fine carbonation. Some minerality, and a bit of astringency in the finish. A pleasure to drink.

Ridiculously good beer.

Dec 9, 2012:

December 2007 bottle, bought at the same time as the bottle reviewed above, and cellared. The profile is quite similar, surprisingly it hasn't changed much, but it is a bit subdued, not quite as exuberant as it was fresh. Was probably better fresh, but still a very tasty and complex beer.

Beerzebub, Oct 02, 2008
Photo of Hojaminbag
4/5  rDev -5.2%
look: 4 | smell: 4 | taste: 4 | feel: 4 | overall: 4

This is a beer I've tried many times and never gor around to reviewing. This sample is from a cask at Sunset grill and tap in Allston, MA. I tried 3 just to get it right...

An amber to ruby colored body with a big head.

Smell has some fruit in it, sour brett, pale malts.

Sourness is noticeable throughout, with some cherrry and other fruit characteristics in the background. Finish reveals the malt, which tastes more like just oats or barleys than malted barley. In the very end I can detect just a touch of alcohol, but it's weak.

Mouthfeel is hard to grade on casks for me, but this is somewhat viscous and a little dry from the sourness.

Extremely drinkable, a great beer.

Hojaminbag, Sep 26, 2008
Photo of ccrida
3.43/5  rDev -18.7%
look: 4 | smell: 3.5 | taste: 3.5 | feel: 3.5 | overall: 3

Dec 2007 bottle, a whopping $25, at By the Bottle in Vancouver. Poured into my new Lost Abbey goblet, Interlude is a clear rusty amber, with a tight bubbled off-white head kept alive by a steady stream of lazy bubbles, leaving nice lace. This is my 700th review, and I haven't had anything special for the last few arbitrary whole number milestones, but I figured now is as good a time as any to bust this expensive bugger out. Of course, expectations are sky high, based on both the price and the potential for the style - I love funky, barrel aged Belgians, and Saison is my favorite style. As it turns out, this one falls way short on both accounts....

Smell is pretty soft, even after letting it warm from about 45-65F. Vinous and a bit acidic, a little sweet, like a Flander's Red, with hints of cherry and booze.

Taste is not like a Flander's Red - the brett merely provides a sharp, horsey bite on the finish that leaves a lingering aftertaste. There is some nutty, caramel malt sweetness, and a touch of plastic phenols and slight chalkiness on the finish, which is tannic. A little fusely, especially at 9 months old. No overt fruit, must have been the malt and/or esters on the nose, it's actually pretty bland over all, like generic wine with a musty bite. Only it's priced like a good wine, which is really outrageous, and leaves me feeling like I wasted my money. I'd be interested to see if this develops more depth with a couple years under it's belt, but at $25 a pop, I can't justify the experiment - especially when it's nothing special to begin with, and can just as likely getter worse.

Mouthfeel is thicker, a little syrupy, a wine like viscosity like sugary blush.

Drinkability isn't that hot, cramped by the outrageous price it was even harder to enjoy then had I only paid $10 for it, which is certainly a fair price compared to many of the other brett beers being put out by US craft brewers. But to charge what they do, they need to be offering a masterpiece, not a test batch.

ccrida, Sep 20, 2008
Photo of dirtylou
4.28/5  rDev +1.4%
look: 4.5 | smell: 4.5 | taste: 4 | feel: 4.5 | overall: 4.5

2007 vintage, corked and caged, obtained via some sort of trade/bif but who can remember

upon popping the cork, this one started gushing out of the bottle so i naturally cut the losses by taking the foam to the dome...all things considered, maybe only a couple ounces escaped

appearance: poured into a snifter - this is an absolutely radiant beer with a glowing orange body and a full wave of beige suds and lovely lacing - sexy

smell: strong vinous aromas, strong notes of funky brett yeast and oak blasts...deep and complex as would be expected from the allagash brand

taste: The effects of oak wine barrels leave this ale vinous to the point of a fine wine. The funky Brett tones play out really nicely in this beer and the oak is rather subtle. The sour tones are minimal and complimentary. It's just an all around solid beer

mouthfeel: active and alive, medium body

drinkability: good

dirtylou, Sep 01, 2008
Photo of MrHurmateeowish
4.83/5  rDev +14.5%
look: 4.5 | smell: 5 | taste: 5 | feel: 4.5 | overall: 4.5

750ml bottle from The Lighthouse in Manchester. 2007 vintage Pours a virtually translucent amber-red with a thin film of off-white head. Smells sweet, fruity, and sour/acidic. Tastes fruity, bready, and sour/funky, but not overwhelmingly so. Flavors are extremely subtle and balanced. Medium-bodied with surprisingly low carbonation. Wow. This beer is the most unique beer I have ever encountered, unlike any other beer I've had. Delightfully sour/funky, but not a sour bomb. Nothing wrong with this beer, very well-crafted doubt. Even at the cost, (about 17$ per bottle), I would not hesitate to buy up more. Can't wait to see how it ages (have a bottle of 2007 and 2005 aging now)!

MrHurmateeowish, Aug 23, 2008
Photo of deg
4.13/5  rDev -2.1%
look: 4 | smell: 3 | taste: 4.5 | feel: 5 | overall: 4

I poured the beer into a wide mouth goblet. A nice honey color with a thick head. I couldn't smell a thing, which disappointed me. However, this isn't the first beer this has happened to, so I am not sure what to make of that (maybe I'm losing my sense of smell?). I took a taste. Vanilla, cream, and a fruitiness. I couldn't quite identify the fruit. The beer felt nice and creamy and soft on my tongue, really easy to drink. One concern I have about the drinkability of this beer is that you can't tell it is 9.5%ABV, and it goes down quite smoothly. That's not necessarily a bad thing, it's got not to be whacked in the face with an alcohol taste.

deg, Aug 12, 2008
Photo of tai4ji2x
3.58/5  rDev -15.2%
look: 4 | smell: 3.5 | taste: 3.5 | feel: 4 | overall: 3.5

750ml bottle. labeled as dec 2007. poured into tulip.

clear copper color. decent head fades to wisps and a ring. some lacing, tho sparse at times.

oaky aroma upfront, whiskey tones. some possible brett funk. notes of white wine. (yep, white, not red)

phenols start the palate, then oak comes in w moderate bitterness. hint of caramel malt, but not much. more whisky and wine notes. trace of acidity. dry, oaky finish.

not thin, some smoothness w tannins for texture. carbonation is fluffy when rolled on tongue, but otherwise prickly.

just a little too much oak, while other flavors are too dulled and thus overpowered. what happened? i enjoyed this a lot at the EBF. but now, meh...

tai4ji2x, Jul 22, 2008
Photo of number1bum
4.38/5  rDev +3.8%
look: 4 | smell: 4.5 | taste: 4.5 | feel: 4.5 | overall: 4

December 2007 vintage. Pours a burnt orange color with good clarity and about two fingers of off-white head. Head recedes to a thin but full lace.

Smell is quite bold and has some red wine characteristics, oak, peppery spice, some fruit. Lots of yeast going aromas, both "typical" Belgian yeast as well as funky brett. Some alcohol is noticeable. Oak and red wine characteristics dominate as it warms.

Taste is very complex, starting off dry with red wine characteristics and then moving to a funky, tart and yeasty flavor. Then comes some fruit, pear maybe (this is probably the peak in terms of sweetness with just a splash of sweet pear) followed by some vanilla, peppery spice, earthy and oaky flavor and finishing dry with all of these last aforementioned flavors lingering on the palate. Alcohol is very well hidden but comes out a bit more as it warms.

Mouthfeel is quite crisp and dry, both of which give it a light feel in the mouth. I guess I'd call it a medium body.

This is quite an interesting, complex and very well crafted brew. The flavor profile is not my favorite of the Allagash line, but it is still a stellar beer. Definitely worth picking up.

number1bum, Jul 20, 2008
Photo of beerman55
4.63/5  rDev +9.7%
look: 5 | smell: 5 | taste: 4.5 | feel: 4.5 | overall: 4.5

Full body with exceptional mounth feel. Aroma was full of fruit with a hoppy balance that swirled throughout the tasting.

Giving the high ABV this beer was a delight to sit and savor. During the course of the night, I quickly began to enjoy the full body texture this beer had to offer as it warmed slight in the glass.

beerman55, Jul 19, 2008
Photo of alexgash
4.58/5  rDev +8.5%
look: 4 | smell: 5 | taste: 4.5 | feel: 4.5 | overall: 4.5

Corked and caged 750 ml bottle. 2007 bottling.

Mildly hazy glowing copper orange body. Fizzy, crackly, finger of dirty beige head. Good lacing. Very effervescent with lots of little bubbles coming up from the bottom. Wonderfully aromatic nose of powdered sugar, pears, tart grapes, cherry skins, cobwebs, fresh hay, hints of oak, cotton candy, and some tangy brett-like notes. Exceptional.

Tangy fruit and tart cherry-citrus notes up front. Herbal, grassy hoppiness as well. Powdered sugar fruits (pears, grapes) bring in a little sweetness mid-palate. Slightly funky hay and cherry skin tartness come out before an oaky, almost banana aftertaste/aspirin bitter finish. Lingering vinous tannin quality. Dry. Medium-full body with an almost sticky feel. Sparkling carbonation in the finish. One of the best American Belgian-style beers around.

alexgash, Jul 09, 2008
Allagash Interlude from Allagash Brewing Company
94 out of 100 based on 1,032 ratings.