Dismiss Notice
Save $5 when you subscribe to 12 issues / year of BeerAdvocate magazine by selecting auto-renew.

Subscribe now →
Dismiss Notice
Join Our Email List →

And we'll send you the latest updates and offers from BeerAdvocate, because knowing is half the battle.
Dismiss Notice

Pre-order your Respect Beer "Hipster" Hoodie today!

Plus: Free shipping (US only) on orders of $25 or more until 12/18/15. Just select "Free Shipping" at checkout.

Shop now →

Thumbprint Cherry Stout - New Glarus Brewing Company

Not Rated.
Thumbprint Cherry StoutThumbprint Cherry Stout

Educational use only; do not reuse.
very good

294 Reviews

(Read More)
Reviews: 294
Hads: 498
Avg: 3.76
pDev: 16.49%
Wants: 111
Gots: 42 | FT: 4
Brewed by:
New Glarus Brewing Company visit their website
Wisconsin, United States

Style | ABV
Fruit / Vegetable Beer |  6.50% ABV

Availability: Rotating

Notes & Commercial Description:
Beer added by: badbeer on 02-21-2006

This beer is retired; no longer brewed.

Formerly Unplugged Cherry Stout.
Beer: Reviews & Ratings
Sort by:  Recent | High | Low | Top Raters | Read the Alström Bros Beer Reviews and Beer Ratings of Thumbprint Cherry Stout Alström Bros
Reviews: 294 | Hads: 498
Photo of BedetheVenerable
3.7/5  rDev -1.6%
look: 4 | smell: 4 | taste: 3.5 | feel: 4 | overall: 3.5

This is for the old version, the 'Unplugged' Cherry Stout.

Presentation: 12oz brown pop top, nice foil, NG minimalist label. I'm thinking this is from 2010, but there's no date.

Appearance: Fairly clear, warm mahogany brew with a light tan cap and steady carbonation. Overall, not particularly 'stout-like', more like a porter or a brown ale, but nice-looking, nonetheless.

Smell: NG really knows how to do fruit beers. The nose is cherry lifesavers, fresh cherry pie, and a hint of earthy cherry juice all rolled into one. You really have to work at it, but there's some underlying brown malt character as well. Again, nothing particularly stout-like, but really pleasant.

Taste: NOT one of those fru-fru sweet, syrupy fruit beers. This is not as good as their Wisconsin Belgian Red, but it's similar to it in a lot of ways. Lots of acidity and lip-smacking tart cherries combine with sharp carbonation to make this spritzy and tangy. Though it's tart and lip-smacking, it's nowhere near sour. Though the label said that this was (at least partially) spontaneously fermented, this isn't a Lacto/Pedio bomb in any way. The fruit flavor is very good, if a bit one dimensional, with just a hint of sweet graham cracker malt behind it. The one downside is that (and it kills me to say this, as I am 99% sure there's NO artificial flavorings in here) there is a touch of an odd, mineral twang that you sometimes get in the better-quality cherry cough lozenges.

Mouthfeel: Sharp, spritzy, lip-smacking (pleasant)

Overall: Let's be clear; this beer is in NO way a stout. Cherry porter would have been closer, but there's no roasted charater whatsoever here. I remember this also being the case when it was much fresher. 'Wild Cherry Ale' or 'Wisconsin Cherry Ale' or something of the like would have been more appropriate. I love the way Dan does his beers, but the designation here is a bit off. This is a really nice, natural, not-too-sweet/not-too-sour fruit beer that would go well with some types of desserts and likely with a creamy Camembert and crusty baguette as well. I think this was around 9-10 dollars for a 4-pk. At that price, even considering the excellent cherry flavors, I haev to give this a low B (just above a B-). Wisconsin Belgian Red is $9-10 for a 750, is lower in alcohol, and I have NO problem paying that. That's how I know that that's still the better beer :)

 2,392 characters

Photo of ChainGangGuy
4.02/5  rDev +6.9%
look: 3.5 | smell: 4 | taste: 4 | feel: 4.5 | overall: 4

Appearance: Pours out a clear, dark brown body with plenty of amber-hued hints at the edges and topped with a slim, off-white head.

Smell: It really just smells more akin to a brown ale given a large, vibrant top note of Luden's Cherry throat drops.

Taste: A roundabout gulp of cherry-flavored cola with extra added toasty malt tastes. Fairly sweet throughout. Lightly tart. There's a bit of middling woodiness from the oak, but, for the most part, the cherries take center stage. Even farther down into the cherry bin you'll find some slight mustiness, but, at best, it's reserved. Closes out as sweet and fruity as it kicked off.

Mouthfeel: Medium-plus body. Medium carbonation. Lightly sticky in the mouth.

Overall: It's a very fine beer, don't get me wrong, but not a stout. Instead of "cherry stout" call it "stout cherry", because there's definitely plenty of cherriness within.

 888 characters

Photo of yamar68
3.27/5  rDev -13%
look: 3 | smell: 3.5 | taste: 3 | feel: 3.5 | overall: 3.5

So I just returned home from a quick Wisconsin beer run. First, I tried the WI Belgian Red which I enjoyed very much, but it was a bit heavy on the fruit for me. So I thought I'd take a break and switch it up with a New Glarus Cherry Stout... turns out, they are oddly similar.

Pours like a lighter barleywine. More clarity than you'd expect from any stout.

The nose is bossed around by the massive cherries. Faint vinegar, subtle roasted malts... a few suggestions of "stout" but honestly not much.

The production of this beer obviously doesn't differ much from the Belgian Red. The overpowering, tart cherry is supported by some light cocoa and toffee, barely.

As others have suggested, this beer isn't bad at all... just not at all what it's advertised as.

 765 characters

Photo of BeardedBoffin
3.62/5  rDev -3.7%
look: 3.5 | smell: 4 | taste: 3.5 | feel: 3.5 | overall: 3.5

The beer pours a dark amber color with a big cap of foam. Cherry exudes from the beer into the nose. More of this in the flavor. A little sweet in the start, but some tartness breaks through. The beer seems less like stout and more like a a mere substrate to convey the cherry goodness. The beer takes second fiddle to New Glarus' magic with cherries. I don't detect any hints of stout-like darkness in this beer. The cherries are pleasant, but I think it is a tab mis-labeled as a stout.

 488 characters

Photo of Mora2000
4/5  rDev +6.4%
look: 4 | smell: 4 | taste: 4 | feel: 4 | overall: 4

Bottle drank at bu11zeye's 10,000th rating tasting.

The beer pours a reddish-amber color with a white head. The aroma is full of very sweet cherries. The flavor is very similar. There is a ton of cherry syrup, as well a some lightly roasted malt. Overall, the beer is very sweet. Medium mouthfeel and medium carbonation.

 322 characters

Photo of feloniousmonk
3.62/5  rDev -3.7%
look: 3.5 | smell: 4 | taste: 3.5 | feel: 3.5 | overall: 3.5

New Glarus Cherry Stout. Brewed and bottled in New Glarus, WI. On the side of the label, some of the same blah-blah-blah, then, "This is Dan's Gold Medal winning "Cherry Stout." This ale is aged in oak barrels to promote the spontaneous fermentation. Eight Wisconsin malted barleys combined with Wisconsin Montmorency cherries make for a complex and subtle taste experience that you may never find again. Discover why Dan is repeatedly recognized as the Best Brewmaster in America."

Dark brown color, mostly opaque, some clarity in spots. Pink-ish brown head appears, then slims down with certainty.

Ripe, vibrant cherry aromatics, happy mix of sweet and sour, rounded out by the oak barrel action.

Taste: Once in the mouth, more sweet and sour, more flashes of fruity brilliance. Not too much happens underneath, however. I feel that if this hadn't been called a stout, I'd find some way around this disappointment. As it is, I find it lacking a a "stout." Tell you what, I'll forget it as a "stout" and think of it as a dark version of the Wisconsin Cherry Red. If I didn't, I'd find the malt too mild, lacking roast, lacking a lot of stout-y elements. Removing that aspect of my expectations, I'd be very fond of the flavor.

 1,230 characters

Photo of r0nburgundy69
3.58/5  rDev -4.8%
look: 4 | smell: 3.5 | taste: 3.5 | feel: 4 | overall: 3.5

12 oz bottle into a Jester King tulip.
A: dark brown, with a red hue, thick creamy head.
S: Cherry, lots of it, a little chocolate.
T: Tart cherry at first, then milk chocolate with a bit of spices, it would be similar to a chocolate covered cherry it were not for a medicinal quality.
M: Nice and creamy, yet light, low but adequate carbonation
O: I enjoyed it, but I do taste some cough syrup, which hurt the overall score.

 430 characters

Photo of Viciousknishs
4.42/5  rDev +17.6%
look: 4 | smell: 4.5 | taste: 4.5 | feel: 4 | overall: 4.5

A- pours a deep brown color with ruby red tints. Nice finger of light tab head. Good retention.

S- huge gigantic juicy fresh Wisconsin cherries with a touch of chocolate and oak.

T- tastes like a cherry cordial. Sweet milk chocolate malt flavor. Rich tart cherry and a hint of vanilla from the oak. Superb beverage.

MF- juicy mouthfeel with a light medium body and perfect carbonation.

D- superb drinkability

Overall another amazing fruit beer from the folks at new glarus.

 478 characters

Photo of NuclearDolphin
3.59/5  rDev -4.5%
look: 3 | smell: 4 | taste: 4 | feel: 1.5 | overall: 3.5

Poured into a Pint Glass

Appearance - Dark Red with a brown tinge, Slighty soapy off-white 2 finger head.

Smell - Sweet Cherries, molasses, yeasts, faint hops and roasted malts. Sweet Cherry scent is very strong, almost like opening a bottle of cherry syrup and taking a whiff. Very sweet smelling, perhaps the sweetest smelling stout I've come across.

Taste - Cherries, Chocolate, Yeasts, Burnt Malts and Barley. Flavor is more balanced than the smell. Tastes like cherries dipped in chocolate; Interesting!

Mouthfeel - Very light bodied and virtually no carbonation, but its got a very syrupy and watery feeling to it, which has a texture that comes off as quite unpleasant.

Overall - Its smells good, tastes good, but the mouthfeel is definitely it's biggest weakness and hurts the overall quality of the beer. With that said, It's still worth checking out if you're looking for something new; Just be prepared for a rather unsavory texture on your palate.

 964 characters

Photo of jjanega08
3.91/5  rDev +4%
look: 2.5 | smell: 4 | taste: 4 | feel: 4 | overall: 4

No freshness dating.

A= Doesn't pour like your typical stout... A much lighter color coming from the bottle and almost looks like it has a red tinge. In the glass it's a very deep amber color and could be a black in the right lighting. The head is a half finger high and falls fast to a thin layer on top of the glass. The lacing is minimal.

S= Smells like a cherry sucker. Candy like aroma. Not much else coming through besides the candy aroma.

T= The taste again is dominated by a cherry candy flavor. There is however a bit of roasted malt and maybe a little caramel malt. Not much as far as hops or yeast. Really a unique beer. I would have expected nothing less from a NG fruit beer.

M= Nice thicker mouth.

O= Stout? Not much of a stout but an amazing fruit beer. Somehow NG seems to be able to do amazing things with fruit. While they don't really keep it as raw fruit they somehow doctor it to bring a nostalgic candy character. This is no exception. Candy cherries all the way with a little bit of roast in the taste and none in the nose. Worth trying again and again.

 1,083 characters

Photo of ShanePB
4.17/5  rDev +10.9%
look: 3.5 | smell: 4 | taste: 4.5 | feel: 4 | overall: 4

12 oz bottle
Served into a tulip glass

A: Deep brown with some maroon hues throughout. Initially a big, rocky and foamy slightly off-white head forms with a decent rate of dissipation. Bits of lacing along the walls but the retention falls flat on its face, leaving not even a ring behind the more shallow the glass becomes.

S: Dark cherry, sour cherry candy, sweet caramel malts and even a hint of chocolate malt towards the back. It certainly smells nothing like a "stout," as the name suggests. Truly, this isn't but a nice fruity and malty smelling ale nonetheless.

T: A wash of somewhat tart and sour cherry coats the palate and mid. The flavor doesn't change until the back end and into the linger where the rich malt base comes through. Plenty of caramel and roasted malts. Hints of chocolate dance but never come center. Still, a very unique and interesting blending of flavors. Certainly sweet though.

M: Highly carbonated, bubbly and even fizzy on the palate. Coats very nicely as the malts in the linger give it a good feel.

I honestly really enjoyed this beer. It seems to me that New Glarus have mastered the "fruit" beers, and this is no exception. While a bit sweet, they contain massive amounts of fruits, which are by nature, sweet! This is one brewery I really wish I could find in my area.

 1,313 characters

Photo of doucmehu
3.62/5  rDev -3.7%
look: 3.5 | smell: 4 | taste: 3.5 | feel: 3.5 | overall: 3.5

2012 vintage from bottle to a stemmed tulip. For goodness' sake, read the label and not the name of the beer. This is NOT a stout. Also - this should be paired with food.

A: OK, not what I was expecting. This is thin and murky brown with a ruby tint to it. Head is a nice stack of manila envelopes that fade into a lasting ring. Minimal lacing.

S: Whoa, totally unexpected. Cherry Luden's cough drops all the way, with just a hint of cocoa powder. Smells like Belgian Red.

T: Cold, this is not pleasant. Just a funky, medicinal, bitter cherry mess. However, once it warms up (and you warm up to just what it is and not what you were expecting) it gets substantially better. The cherry flavor is dominant, both sweet and tart and tasting really fresh and authentic. Again, the only malt presence is faint, although it really adds a nice balance, keeping the cherries from being too acidic and cloying.

M: Crisp and tangy, with a fruit beer sharpness but a bit softer, smoother finish from the malt. Slighty bitter and astringent.

O: New Glarus amazes me with their brews, from super basic to quite odd. However, every single one seems to be very well crafted and has a special place. This is no exception, albeit to the end of the odd side of the spectrum. As long as this beer is approached and appreciated as it was intended (as a fruit beer), it is quite enjoyable.

 1,372 characters

Photo of TWStandley
2.13/5  rDev -43.4%
look: 3.5 | smell: 3 | taste: 1.5 | feel: 2 | overall: 2

Received as an extra and was very excited to try this.

Poured a dark brown/amber color with a light brown/red tinged head.

Smelled of imitation cherries, roasted malts, and a bit of chocolate.

Taste is just terrible. I never drain poor beers. This was drain poured. I tried to see how it would develop as it warmed a bit, but this is just a terrible tasting beer. Tastes like someone took a mediocre stout and dumped some robitussin in it, then added in a bit of tart cherries.

Mouthfeel - get it out of my mouth!

Overall glad I gave it a try, but will not ever drink this again, even if it is free. Still, major props to the trader who included this as an extra - love trying new beers.

 693 characters

Photo of kawilliams81
3.97/5  rDev +5.6%
look: 3.5 | smell: 4 | taste: 4 | feel: 4 | overall: 4

2012 bottle poured into a Stone pint.

A- pours a dark amber with a 2 finger tan head. Small blotches of lacing spots on glass.

S- cherry lifesavers

T- this tastes like Wisconsin belgian red with a hint of chocolate malt.

M- medium body and carbonation. Very drinkable and clean finish.

O- nice twist on a fruit beer. It's like getting more Belgian red for your buck!

 371 characters

Photo of bennetj17
3.77/5  rDev +0.3%
look: 3.5 | smell: 4 | taste: 3.5 | feel: 4 | overall: 4

Dark brownish-amber appearance. You can see through it in the light, so it doesn't look much like a Stout. Thin, soapy tan foam. The smell is predominantly cherries, and is immediately reminiscent of the Belgian Red. In fact, I don't get much of anything else so you might convince me it was the Belgian Red if I was blindfolded. As much as this doesn't smell like a Stout, I still enjoy the fresh cherry bouquet.

The taste is a bit muddled, the cherry flavor is still dominant, but less exciting with a cherry cola like sweetness and not much other depth. It's almost like they took Belgian Red and added a splash of some Stout, but not enough to give it that roasty character. The carbonation is nice and sharp, and the mouthfeel is light but not thin.

Overall this is a bit of a disappointment, mainly because this doesn't resemble a Stout at all. On the other hand, it's a unique beer, and no one else but New Glarus could make a cherry brew quite like it. Perhaps they should have called it Cherry Brown Ale or something like that. In the end I say worth a try.

 1,069 characters

Photo of nickapalooza86
4.27/5  rDev +13.6%
look: 4 | smell: 4.5 | taste: 4 | feel: 4.5 | overall: 4.5

Pours a clear brown which does not suprise me after reading the reviews.

Smells of almost all cherry maybe a little tartness in it to. Really nice.

I new this was not gonna taste at all like a stout by the smell... That being said I am ok with that if I want a cherry stout I will have CW cherry BBS. It is sour cherries all the way with a nice bitter bite at the end.

Mouthfeel is exactly what I look for in a fruit beer. Mediun with a good amount of carbonation.

This is one that makes you think, does writing Cherry Stout on the label make it lose points because it really is not a stout at all. But I went into it thinking NG fruit beer and was rewarded with one....

 674 characters

Photo of JayQue
3.17/5  rDev -15.7%
look: 3 | smell: 3.5 | taste: 3 | feel: 3.5 | overall: 3

Definitely not a stout!!! Pours a mahogany brown color with ruby highlights when held to a light. Small off white head, worse than average retention, a bit of lacing.

Smell is fairly good. Strong cherry aroma, not my favorite beer smell but it is prominent.

Taste is pretty average.Sweet cherry soda / maybe a little cherry cough syrup with kind of a sourness as well. Not really bad but not that great either.

Mouthfeel is rich enough, not watery or cloyingly sweet.

Not one I would have again but probably not bad for someone that likes fruit flavored beers.

 564 characters

Photo of pweis909
4.8/5  rDev +27.7%
look: 4.5 | smell: 4.5 | taste: 5 | feel: 4.5 | overall: 5

Garnet-brown w/ tawny foam, lacing
S= Cherry cough syrup, initially, and then more cherry life saver. Possibly a faint whiff of acetic.
T=Blast of sweet and sour, the cherries quite prominent, the stout character is reduced to a subtle chocolate that surfaces in the finish.
M=medium body, not thin. The acidity tickles the tip of my nose each time I sip it (not really a mouth thing, but a feel thing).

I like the balance in this beer. I find many sours too sour for me, but this one is lovely.

 496 characters

Photo of cradke
4.7/5  rDev +25%
look: 4.5 | smell: 4.5 | taste: 5 | feel: 4.5 | overall: 4.5

Appearance: Dark with cherry amber hues. Fine head.

Smell: Cherry, sweet, very little malt notes, Delicious. The dark color and sweet cherry flavors are kind of messing with me and I'm really enjoying it.

Taste: Wow. I really dig this. Lot's of cherry, almost to a lambic. There is a surprisingly little malt and stout to this. It's not as sweet as the Belgian Red but the cherry flavor is on par. It's like the cherry flavor notes with a more rounded profile. It's got a cleaner finish with some wheat notes coming through. As a desert beer, this is up there.

Mouthfeel: Great carbonation levels that match the sweet flavors perfectly. Thin and spreads well.

Overall: Wow, I really enjoy this. I think it's a pretty hit or miss brew based on some of the reviews but they can send me their bottles. I do agree that the 'stout' is a misnomer, it should be "Belgian Red-dark" or something along those lines because there is a near complete lack of malt notes. As a desert beer, this is up there.

 998 characters

Photo of dhannes
3.41/5  rDev -9.3%
look: 4.5 | smell: 3.5 | taste: 3 | feel: 4 | overall: 3.5

Poured from a bottle into a Perfect Pint.

A=Dark red (brownish red) with a creamy, yellowish head...very inviting.

S=A hint of sour cherries...no hop aroma to speak of.

T=A strong, cherry syrup flavor with little to no malt or hops noticable...okay flavor, but lacking compared to the actual fruit itself...more like a cherry syrup.

M=Rather drinkable, although a bit harsh...carbonation was a bit too noticeable.

O=I did not like this nearly as much as the Apple Ale...this is a desert beer okay for sipping. Probably wouldn't buy this one again and hoping guests will drink at least a pair of the remaining three bottles....

 631 characters

Photo of wisrarebeer
1.98/5  rDev -47.3%
look: 2.5 | smell: 2 | taste: 2 | feel: 1.5 | overall: 2

A: mahogany color, clear, lighter for a stout, light tan head, that was a thin veil
S: strong cherry cough syrup (ugh!), I didn't want this, I was hoping for something closer to Bell's
T: sweet, sticky, strong cherry, very little stout, aged in barrels (really?)
M: medicinal, light cherry cough syrup, not robust like a stout should be

 336 characters

Photo of oshbeer
2.12/5  rDev -43.6%
look: 3 | smell: 3.5 | taste: 1 | feel: 3 | overall: 2

This beer does not live up to its name as a stout - the only reason I bought it.

I knew I was in trouble when I poured it and it looked more like a dark ale then a stout. It did carry a nice head though.

The smell was of tart cherries, which was pleasant.

The taste was best summed up by my wife (who thought the exact thing as me) tastes like watered down cough syrup. I might have been easier on it had it actually been called a fruit ale. The tartness that should have been similar to tart cherries, was sour and left an aftertaste again similar to cough syrup.

Mouthfeel was smooth & carbonation was average.

I really had high expectations for this brew but unfortunately I will be punishing my friends with the rest of this.

 735 characters

Photo of WastingFreetime
3.46/5  rDev -8%
look: 4 | smell: 3 | taste: 3.5 | feel: 4 | overall: 3.5

Reviewed from notes.

A. Has the dark murky coloration of cherry juice, and three fingers worth of craggy beige head that falls down to a collar in about two minutes, leaving minor lacing on the inside of the glass.

S. Smells like cherry juice (skins included) medium amounts of malty aroma, and only very vaguely of any kind of roasted character at all. Here is where this beer stumbles: It does not have enough stout characteristics to support being called a stout. If only it had something other than the word ‘Stout’ on the label this beer would have gotten close to perfect scores from me. Because it smells and tastes almost like a perfect specimen of a Fruit Brown Ale.

T. Tart cherry skins at first resolve into a dark fruit medley mixed with a solid malt presence. The flavor turns vinous like red wine mid sip and than gains just the right amount of tannic astringency in the finish to provide an excellent punctuation mark at the end. Not too sweet, not too sour, just right. Semi-roasted tones of chocolate appear if allowed to warm up to room temp. But still, there should have been about 40% more roasted character IMO.

M. Smooth medium body and carbonation.

Don’t get me wrong, this is a truly delicious beer, really worth trying. If only it had more stout-ness, I would have been able to give it the ratings it truly deserves. It’s really frustrating to me (as an armchair beer critic) when a beer is perfectly fine but there is something written on the bottle label that it just doesn’t have, because I am forced to take away points from my review solely because somebody in label design decided to lie to me!

 1,640 characters

Photo of Lemke10
4.27/5  rDev +13.6%
look: 4 | smell: 4.5 | taste: 4 | feel: 4.5 | overall: 4.5

I bought a single 12oz bottle from Woodman's in Janesville, WI in early 2012 for $2.69.

Pours a dark brown with a reddish hue to it as well as an off white head. Scent is a blend of barley and sweet cherries. The first part of the taste I noticed is the sweet, tart cherry flavor followed by the bolder, malted stout after taste that had hints of cocoa and coffee. Smooth and sweet to drink. A very complex fruit beer that has much more to offer than just the fruity taste.

 474 characters

Photo of BarrytheBear
3.77/5  rDev +0.3%
look: 3 | smell: 3.5 | taste: 4 | feel: 3.5 | overall: 4

12 oz Thumbprint edition into my Central Waters snifter.

Pours dark brown with ruby red highlights when backlit. Half inch head is short lived leaving a calm surface. As far as a stout is concerned, I'm not sure this fits the bill.

Nose is predominantly cherry juice. The faint maltiness can't stand up to the fruit presence.

Big time cherry juice along the front of the tongue. Carbonation prickles. As the beer hits the back of the tongue, the flavor melds into tootsie roll and light cocoa powder. Milk chocolate finish one again reunites with the cherry to create a slightly sour fruit fade.

Mouthfeel is prickly and the carbonation pops for a light mouthfeel.

Overall, this is a difficult beer to review. As listed on this site, it's another solid fruit beer entry from a brewery that consistently hammers this style. As a stout, I have a hard time believing this even falls remotely into the style. A Cherry Brown, perhaps? I'll attempt to split my rating as this seems a beer blurring borders but nailing neither.

Edit: It's a nice beer that's easy to drink if you choose to throw designations out the window.

 1,124 characters

Thumbprint Cherry Stout from New Glarus Brewing Company
85 out of 100 based on 294 ratings.