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R&D Golden Ale - New Glarus Brewing Company

Not Rated.
R&D Golden AleR&D Golden Ale

Displayed for educational use only; do not reuse.

317 Ratings
no score

(send 'em beer!)
Ratings: 317
Reviews: 179
rAvg: 4.06
pDev: 13.3%
Wants: 75
Gots: 43 | FT: 2
Brewed by:
New Glarus Brewing Company visit their website
Wisconsin, United States

Style | ABV
Belgian Pale Ale |  7.00% ABV

Availability: Limited (brewed once)

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

Brewed 3-23-09, Bottled 6-18-09

(Beer added by: deliriumfest on 07-15-2009)
Beer: Ratings & Reviews
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Ratings: 317 | Reviews: 179 | Display Reviews Only:
Photo of homebrew311
3.03/5  rDev -25.4%
look: 4 | smell: 1.5 | taste: 3.5 | feel: 3.5 | overall: 3

A: pours a clear golden, thin white head, decent retention, some lacing

S: nose is funk-ay... big time yeasty notes up front, a bit of bubblegum, hay, grass, wood, and spice. This aroma and me aren't getting along too well...

T: taste is much different than the smell... and that is in a good way. Notes of biscuit, lemon, and yeast. A touch of black pepper is in the mix, decent balance. Still can't get over the smell though.

MF: high carbonation, light body

O: interesting brew, not my favorite, the smell is very funky...not in the way that I can appreciate.

homebrew311, Oct 23, 2011
Photo of devilben02
3.85/5  rDev -5.2%
look: 5 | smell: 3.5 | taste: 4 | feel: 4 | overall: 3.5

Pours a slightly hazy apple-juice-yellow-orange color, with a thick, billowy, eggshell-white head. The aroma is earthy yet fresh, like morning in a barnyard, with a bit of unripe apple adding some extra tartness. The earthy characteristics continue into the flavor, with a musty yet light yeastiness, a bit of a grassy character, and a small contribution from some biscuity malts. The light, effervescent carbonation complements the flavor profile.

Overall, the lightness of the supporting flavors allows the Brett to be showcased, but there wasn't a lot of wow for me beyond that.

devilben02, Oct 20, 2011
Photo of NStLincoln
4.08/5  rDev +0.5%
look: 4.5 | smell: 4 | taste: 4 | feel: 4.5 | overall: 4

Pours a really pretty hazy gold with a nice finger high white head.

Somewhat startling on the nose. At first I get a Lemon Pledge aroma but it's a lot deeper than that. What I ultimately come up with is mango/pineapple with some fancy pepper on it.

Complex and really fun to drink. Yeasty goodness with tropical fruit and pepper. Some lemon too.

NStLincoln, Oct 19, 2011
Photo of BearsOnAcid
4.03/5  rDev -0.7%
look: 4.5 | smell: 4 | taste: 4 | feel: 4 | overall: 4

Hazy golden pour, fluffy white head.

Big bretty nose on this. It's a clean musty pineapple aroma.

Pineapples and cream taste with a bitter musty funk. Seriously bone dry. This beer isn't crazy in complexity but it's a really great brett beer since it's not offensive at all and tastes very good. Very similar to Saison Brett.

BearsOnAcid, Oct 13, 2011
Photo of flyfisherfinn
2.65/5  rDev -34.7%
look: 3 | smell: 1.5 | taste: 3 | feel: 4.5 | overall: 2

I was expecting a great brew with this, as I've heard many great things about the R & D line. This beer had a decent appearance, and was a very smooth beer. The taste was average, but I just couldn't get past the odor on this one. It's possible the beer I had was bad, and I would try this again, but overall I was not impressed with this.

flyfisherfinn, Sep 08, 2011
Photo of aasher
4/5  rDev -1.5%
look: 4 | smell: 4 | taste: 4 | feel: 4 | overall: 4

This one pours a nice, bright honey gold in color with moderate turbidity and a white lacing around the glass. It smells of pale malts, slight tart fruits, and a mix of wild yeasts. There is a slight butter component. It's pretty interesting for the style. The flavors are floral and you get a mouthful of brett. Wow is that a lot of brett. I haven't been hit in the face this hard since Ommegeddon. Damn it's funky. It drinks pretty light in body and leaves the funk behind. It's like a 70's funk band pulling an all night show in your mouth. It's solid but funky, funky, funky. That's all you get after awhile. Brett is alright but this is almost overkill. Solid beer, like diving in head first into a Brett infused shallow end.

aasher, Sep 04, 2011
Photo of pmlondrigan
4.13/5  rDev +1.7%
look: 4.5 | smell: 4.5 | taste: 4 | feel: 4 | overall: 4

Yum, thanks to Chris for sharing this at a tasting. Soft golden color, a little hazy under a billowy white head. Truly pleasant aroma; all shades of Brett. Pineapple atop must, cob webs and spicy notes. Just a tad of smokey leather. Funky flavor with a little spice and pineapple again. Very much like orval. Barny and smoke again at the end. Very very dry and crisp. Very enjoyable from all sides.

pmlondrigan, Sep 03, 2011
Photo of SpdKilz
4.13/5  rDev +1.7%
look: 4.5 | smell: 4 | taste: 4 | feel: 4 | overall: 4.5

Bottled 06-18-2009. Consumed over two years later.

Appearance – Pours into my tulip with a cloudy yet radiant peach color. About a finger of slightly off white head is achieved with a careful pour that dissipates quickly leaving nice lacing.

Smell – Lots of lemon, floral hops, grass, clove, and some slight barnyard funk.

Taste – An interesting flavor. Listed as a Belgian Pale Ale, this is not what I was expecting. There is a sharp almost medicinal flavor up front that mixes with spices and clove. Wow, there is just so much earthiness and floral flavors. Lavender can easily be picked out which mixes with a slight citrus lemon zest. There is a slight barnyard funk to the overall beer, though not as much as I was hoping for.

Mouthfeel – Medium bodied, crisp carbonation, dry finish.

Overall – What a unique beer. While it doesn’t particularly float my boat, I really do wish I picked up another one of these. The various flavors that can be picked out is in my opinion quite amazing – you really can tell just what is in here. Recommended for a try.

SpdKilz, Aug 31, 2011
Photo of glid02
4.05/5  rDev -0.2%
look: 4 | smell: 4 | taste: 4 | feel: 4.5 | overall: 4

Bottle shared by a generous soul – much obliged!

Pours a slightly hazy bright golden color with a white head that leaves solid lacing.

Smells of light malts with large amounts of bright spices – white pepper and clove. Also present are slight amounts of citrus hops.

Tastes similar to how it smells. Crisp light malts up front are joined quickly by large amounts of spices – clove and white pepper as in the aroma. Midway through the spices fade a bit, allowing the citrus and slightly grassy hops to shine, carrying through to a crisp and mildly bitter ending. Mouthfeel is very good, with grainy carbonation.

Overall this beer was different from what I was expecting, but the large hit of spices translated well. Worth a shot.

glid02, Aug 11, 2011
Photo of SudSavant
5/5  rDev +23.2%
look: 5 | smell: 5 | taste: 5 | feel: 5 | overall: 5

In my blog, this is the ONLY beer to date that has earned a perfect score. That said, I'm simply going to reprint the review word for word to recapture my enthusiasm.

Appearance - This beer seems illuminated from the inside. The colors of raw honey and ripe peach make it a golden delight. The orange-tinted head is very generous, with large, soapy bubbles, but does not last as long as I would like. In fact, you can watch the head dissipate before your eyes, before settling as a single finger's worth.

Aroma - Sweet honey and flowers. Flowers, flowers, and more flowers. Literally like sticking your face in a bouquet full of Stargazer Lillies. Nay, a greenhouse full of Stargazer Lillies. The biscuit and straw malt flavors are present, but hard to find behind such an overwhelming force. A slight warmth is felt, but not detected in the aroma. This is amazing.

Flavor - First sips give you a tiny citrus bite on the tongue before turning their attentions elsewhere. The "elsewhere" is flowers that fade in and out, barely a hint of barnyard must, suggestions of a Belgian yeast (spicy and barely banana sweet), and a light bitter that hides in the background waiting to be paid attention. A wine-drinker's slurp renews the honey sweetness. The finish is quite spicy given the otherwise sweet character of this beer. Lots of pepper, clove, and hop bitter really bring all the sweet floral esters back down to earth. The aftertaste is a similar blend of bitter and flowers, though eventually only the bitter remains (und die Blume abgefallen...) and leaves the mouth fairly dry. What an ale!

Mouthfeel - The light, crisp, tiny effervescence in this beer is the perfect blend of being bubbly enough to keep this beer refreshing and compliment its light flavors, but small enough to help enhance its creamy body. It is abundant to the end, of this medium-bodied brew. Despite its light malts, 7% ABV, and medium body, any alcohol warmth was undetectable.

Overall - This beer is perfect. It's true to style, laden with flavor, excellently crafted, highly drinkable, has perfectly camouflaged alcohol, and immensely refreshing. I cannot make one honest suggestion for improvement to this beer.

SudSavant, Aug 10, 2011
Photo of birchstick
3.73/5  rDev -8.1%
look: 4 | smell: 4.5 | taste: 3.5 | feel: 4.5 | overall: 3

A - pours a straw golden yellow with a small head that rims the glass

S - smells is a nice mixture of light fruits (apples and pears) with a funkiness from the Brett overshadowing everything

T - the taste is like the nose. Starts with some dry, sweet fruits, typical of a BSPA (pears, apples). These fade to a musty funkiness from the Brett. Last up is an unpleasant metallic bitterness that takes away from the rest of the flavors. There is also some grass hops and bitter orange-rind.

M - a medium body with a really nice smoothness

D - interesting BSPA...I haven't had one with Brett in it and I still can't decide if I like the addition to this beer or not. The only negative I took from this beer was the weird bitter metallic taste on the backend. Worth a shot if you are into beers with Brett.

birchstick, Jul 23, 2011
Photo of thagr81us
4.13/5  rDev +1.7%
look: 4.5 | smell: 4.5 | taste: 4 | feel: 4 | overall: 4

Big thanks goes out to funkydelic for sharing this one with me so I could complete the 'set' of the R&Ds. Served from bottle into a Mikkeller flute. Poured a hazy yellow-orange with a two and a half finger off-white head that subsided to one finger very slowly. Maintained nice lacing throughout the glass. The aroma was comprised of sweet malt, pineapple, earty, and HUGE funk. The flavor was of sweet malt, pineapple, earthy, massive funk, and horse blanket. It had a light feel on the palate with high carbonation. Overall this was a pretty tasty brew. The best way I can describe this brew is: liquid Brett. Seriously, this thing screamed Brett at the top of its lungs. This is also the first beer where I have actually tasted horse blanket in it... This one was quite enjoyable (if you like Brett). If not, I would avoid at all costs. Really glad I got to try this one.

thagr81us, Jul 22, 2011
Photo of rye726
3.95/5  rDev -2.7%
look: 4.5 | smell: 4.5 | taste: 3.5 | feel: 4.5 | overall: 4

Pours a hazy golden straw with a silky beige head. Nose has barnyard funk, tart and sour fruits and a clean malt bill. Taste is mellow, but well balanced. Much more funky than tart or sour. Clean, crisp body is nicely carbonated. Drinks great. I just wish it were a bit more sour.

rye726, Jul 12, 2011
Photo of Urbancaver
4/5  rDev -1.5%
look: 4 | smell: 4 | taste: 4 | feel: 4 | overall: 4

Thanks ben for bringing this.

Pours a slightly hazy light brown. A nice amount of white head. Well carbonated. Smells sweet and sugary. A touch of funk on the nose as well but it comes out far stronger on the tongue. The beer tastes so sweet. Very light and funky. Overall interesting but nothing special.

Urbancaver, Jul 08, 2011
Photo of TexIndy
4.85/5  rDev +19.5%
look: 5 | smell: 4.5 | taste: 5 | feel: 4.5 | overall: 5

Poured from a 500ml bottle into a pint glass. Batch 160 brewed on 3/23/09 and bottled 6/18/09. Was a mostly clear golden color with massive carb streams. It had a huge 3+ finger head that settled into a constant thick cap. Great lacing with lots sticking.

The aroma was outstanding with lots of brett barnyard funk along with banana, clove and lemon. A solid malt base underneath. Great aroma. The taste was also amazing and easily the best BPA that I've had to date. Great brett flavors complimented with the fruit and clove. Nice dry finish as well. Went down way too easy for 7%. Sessionable. Mouthfeel was medium with lots of carbonation and dry spicy finish.

Overall, an outstanding beer that I was extremely lucky to get to try, thanks Ummagum!!! Highly recommend if you can find it or trade for it. Only avail in WI and listed as one time release. If available again and I could get it then several bottles would suite me fine! [R;Y]

TexIndy, Jun 29, 2011
Photo of AdamBear
3.53/5  rDev -13.1%
look: 4.5 | smell: 5 | taste: 3 | feel: 3.5 | overall: 3

A-nice cloudy gold with a thick cream colored head

S-this smells great. it smells of banana and some funk. some belgian spice but mostly funky banana. good strength

T-comes in with a malty and faint taste of banana and some funk. its a faint taste followed by a plastic bitterness. the after-taste is some pale belgian malts with a hint of funk. not a terrible taste, but not impressive for any style.

M-light creamy carbonation with a watery finish

O-the appearance and smell got me so excited but I was let down by the taste. its very subtle, something i find uncommon in good belgian styles. its definitely good and unique in its own way though. its also more easy drinking that most belgian ales of its ABV.

AdamBear, Jun 07, 2011
Photo of JamnesCameron
3.68/5  rDev -9.4%
look: 4 | smell: 4.5 | taste: 3.5 | feel: 3 | overall: 3.5

Poured into a New Belgium globe. Pours a deep gold with a huge, three fingers of rocky, off white head. Head slowly drops, leaving some nice lacing.

Aromas of lemon, lemon zest, spicy, peppery yeast.

Flavors of pithy lemon zest, a hint of bitterness, some minerally quality as well. Finish is short, lemony, and a little medicinal, almost minty.

Mouthfeel is medium, good level of carbonation.

Overall a good BPA. But the minty and medicinal qualities clash, reducing the overall enjoyment.

JamnesCameron, Jun 04, 2011
Photo of drumminbrewer
4.53/5  rDev +11.6%
look: 4 | smell: 5 | taste: 4.5 | feel: 4 | overall: 4.5

(reviewed 5/15/11) Proud to say this is the first beer I put into my "cellar" about 2 years ago, got it right off the shelf and into the cool/darkness of my cabin's basement. Let's see how it's turned out...

Bottled 6-18-09

Absolutely alive with carbonation. Enormous head surfaces through a gold/straw colored body. Dissipates rather quickly, leaving just a bit of lacing behind.

Enormous nose. Smells like someone poured a tub of pre-mixed mojito's on freshly cut grass and let it bake in the light for a few hours! Massive Brett presence with a bit of earth too.

Extremely intense taste of Brett. I had this beast fresh and it was much lighter, age has suited this beer well. Candy apples (green apples, Granny Smith), dirt, kiwi, parsley and maybe even a hint of sage. Long finish.

Brewmaster Dan has done it again. I'm just left wondering how much longer this beer could go in my cellar. Outstanding, perfect summer beer.

drumminbrewer, May 16, 2011
Photo of orangesol
4.13/5  rDev +1.7%
look: 3.5 | smell: 4.5 | taste: 4 | feel: 3.5 | overall: 4.5

Big thanks to Deuane for sharing this one with Hojaminbag and myself. Bottle poured into a taster glass.

A - Pours golden yellow with a small half finger tall white head, dissipating down to almost nothing, leaving light lacing down the glass.

S - Smells of crisp brett funk, light grassy hops, and lemon rind. This one is pretty dry from all that brett with the rest of the aroma's helping to balancing it out a bit. Very nice.

T - The brett funk dominates this one. As it begins to die down a bit you pick up some of the lemon, clove, and grassy hops. The finish is a mix of chewy brett and light acidity, lingering for a short time. I enjoyed this one, it was light and easy to drink.

M - Medium body and flavor with moderate carbonation. Light, funky, feel with a small amount of it lingering throughout the finish.

O - I really liked this one. The brett works very well with the rest of the flavors. I would say it is VERY similar to Orval, as it is supposed to be I presume. Very nice stuff.

orangesol, May 10, 2011
Photo of Hojaminbag
4.1/5  rDev +1%
look: 4 | smell: 4 | taste: 4 | feel: 4 | overall: 4.5

This was pulled out of Deuane's fridge at my request and he SierraGS generously shared it with me. Thanks Deuane, Thanks Carolyn!

The body is the color of honey, and the off-white head is a good size and shows off good retention and lacing.

The aroma reveals a grassy, understated aroma that has noticeable funk and sour parts to it. Hints of leather.

The taste is subtle, but quite good. A little bit of barnyard-type funk mixes with a very grassy flavor and hints of lemon rind. Small doses of Brett seems to hang out around the edges, accounting for the presence of dry funk at almost all times. The lemon flavor is lightly tart, but not very assertive. The grassy flavors mix really well with both the funk and the tartness, pulling the two together quite nicely. The malt profile makes an effort at adding some sweetness, but the combination of a light grainy flavor and the yeast overtake it before it really adds anything that I would call sweet. Light, generic fruit and some phenols come from the Belgian yeast. The phenols in the finish dry the beer out a little bit, even as the funk hangs around.

The body has pretty active carbonation but still has a nice creamy feel to it.

I love New Glarus, but this is the first R&D beer that I have had the chance to try. It is very nice. Complex, dry, funky and a bit sour. I think of it as Splinter Gold's little brother.

Hojaminbag, May 04, 2011
Photo of cokes
4.22/5  rDev +3.9%
look: 4.5 | smell: 4.5 | taste: 4 | feel: 4 | overall: 4.5

Lightly misty golden-yellow with a mountain of white suds that stick around and stain the insides of the glass.
After nearly two years in the bottle, the Brett is showing its kaleidoscopic effect on the aroma. It begins with a basic Brett note of rotten citrus and dirty suede earthiness. It rotates outward from there in sequential tangents of lemon oil, apple cores, milkweed, lavender, heather, rosewater, bosc pears, aged cheddar, spearmint, acetic acid, gauze pads, wet hay, and rock candy.
Crisp, pils-esque malts grabs the tongue initially. The crackery dryness is bolstered by the brett, adding earthy peppery spice notes, cracked leather, rotten apples, and lemon rinds. Pepper notes grow and conjoin with the still crispy herbal, weedy hop traits. Cobwebs and a minty, lemon-eucalyptus note appear on the swallow.
The rapid (sometimes gushing) CO2 fades over time, allowing it to transition from blisteringly dry, to something a bit more nuanced...though never quite as much as the nose suggests.
There is a great balance between its funkier elements and general drinkability, with neither actually compromising anything. It's not an enamel-stripping sour Brett bomb, but the rusticness is here.

cokes, May 04, 2011
Photo of meatyard
3.93/5  rDev -3.2%
look: 4.5 | smell: 3.5 | taste: 4 | feel: 4 | overall: 4

Started out being a light gusher. Head was a good 2-finger+ in height that had only moderate retention but left some splotchy lace. Color is a hazy, pale orange.

The smell is pretty mild; about the only thing that I'm getting is some lemon zest & funk.

The taste has more happening with a nice, light, citric tartness up front, some fruitiness which is followed by some barnyard funk.

Mouthfeel is medium, pretty well-carbonated & dry.

Overall: If NG has pretentions towards Orval with this beer then they are missing the mark by a bit. Wish I knew how it compared at bottling to now and curious as to where it's going, if anywhere. I would, definitely, try another bottle if it came my way. So far, I've never had a bad NG beer.

meatyard, May 01, 2011
Photo of Retsinis
3.23/5  rDev -20.4%
look: 3.5 | smell: 3.5 | taste: 3 | feel: 3 | overall: 3.5

Had this at a recent tasting (thanks Skuter)

Per the bottle, 6-18-09 Batch 16.

Poured into a Bruery tulip glass.

A:The beer poured a cloudy golden orange color, with a modest half inch white head, good retention, mild lacing.

S: A mixture of light funk, brett, lemon zest, citrus notes.

T: Similiar mild funkiness, flavors of mild apple cider, clove, finish is simialr to nose, some lemon, and citurs.

M: Dry finish, medium body, slight crisp bitterness, and acidity.

O: Unique beer, the brett certainly adds something to a Belgian pale ale. Glad I was able to try it, would not seek out again, but might not pass up a taste again either.

Retsinis, Apr 21, 2011
Photo of Wadsey
3.28/5  rDev -19.2%
look: 5 | smell: 4 | taste: 2.5 | feel: 4 | overall: 3.5

R & D Golden Ale 

Brewed 3-23-09 and bottled on 6-18-09. Poured in a New Belgium tulip. 

A: Shiny gold beer with a white, towering head. It does settle down, a bit, but a foamy pillow floats on the surface down to the last gulp. Wonderful Brussels lacing. Effervescent and sparkling. 

A: Musty and funk force themselves on nose, so strong that artisanal cheese and barnyard comes to mind. Beneath the brettanomyces, lemon zest, grass and white pepper are hiding. 

T: Follows smell, but brettanomyces are even more evident and the full spectrum of its character is evident: barnyard, horse blanket, gym socks, musty basement, moldy cheese rind and so forth. The other Belgian pale ale qualities are more or less smothered.  Long, super-freak finish. 

M: Medium body and bright carbonation. Surprisingly soft mouthfeel.

D: R & D Golden Ale has been taken over by brettanomyces, which I do enjoy, and drinkability suffers as a result.  Nonetheless, I find it interesting and look forward to sharing my remaining bottle with friends this summer. 

Thanks ezrem for the assist!

Wadsey, Apr 21, 2011
Photo of alpinebryant
3.65/5  rDev -10.1%
look: 4.5 | smell: 4 | taste: 3.5 | feel: 3.5 | overall: 3.5

Pours a very clear goldenrod yellow with a massive head / heavy lacing.

Aroma of brett, straw / fresh hay, lemon and noble hops.

Taste is sweet and dry. Lots of brett flavors / barnyard flavor and some noble hops. While my bottle did not overflow when I opened it, I did have it in my fridge for about a month. Not sure or not if that made a difference. Some granny smith apple tartness is also around among an earthy grassy finish.

Overall not bad, highly carbonated and a medium body. I have not had a belgian pale ale quite like this before.

alpinebryant, Apr 11, 2011
R&D Golden Ale from New Glarus Brewing Company
91 out of 100 based on 317 ratings.