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Unplugged Cranbic Ale - New Glarus Brewing Company

Not Rated.
Unplugged Cranbic AleUnplugged Cranbic Ale

Educational use only; do not reuse.

318 Reviews

(Read More)
Reviews: 318
Hads: 585
rAvg: 4.13
pDev: 7.02%
Wants: 231
Gots: 85 | FT: 3
Brewed by:
New Glarus Brewing Company visit their website
Wisconsin, United States

Style | ABV
American Wild Ale |  4.80% ABV

Availability: Rotating

Notes & Commercial Description:
Beer added by: alcstradamus on 10-16-2009

This beer is retired; no longer brewed.

No notes at this time.
Beer: Reviews & Ratings
Sort by:  Recent | High | Low | Top Raters | Read the Alström Bros Beer Reviews and Beer Ratings of Unplugged Cranbic Ale Alström Bros
Reviews: 318 | Hads: 585
Photo of rudzud
4.2/5  rDev +1.7%
look: 4 | smell: 4 | taste: 4.5 | feel: 4 | overall: 4

Received in a trade and poured into a Duvel Tulip.

A - Poured a crystal clear golden hue with a nice one finger white head that fades to leave spotty lacing and a nice creamy halo with spotty clouding.

S - Nice and tart and sweet. Not sure if I really get any cranberries per say but I do get some nice light tart. There are some fun barrel notes here, oak, vanilla. This is very, very perfumey too.

T - So, hmm. Its sweet, not too too sweet with light malt sweetness. Good cranberry tartness, a shocking amount of wood and vanilla from the wood and tons of perfume/potpourri flavours. Its kinda weird but I like it. Every now and then I get some nice distinct cranberry but mostly that potpourri.

M - Mouthfeel is solid for a wild ale. Nice and refreshing, enough carbonation to stop it from falling thin or flat.

O - Overall this is a good beer. The potpourri funk qualities is slightly distracting, as is the odd amount of vanilla I'm getting from the barrel. Still though, its worth seeking out if just to try. (1,019 characters)

Photo of brystmar
4.11/5  rDev -0.5%
look: 4.5 | smell: 3.5 | taste: 4.5 | feel: 4 | overall: 4

Taking a break from my Power Through Random Extras Night to actually drink something good.

Pours a pinkish color that's rarely seen in beer. Mild white head leaves some mesh atop the brew. Sticky lace too.

I don't recall this brew having an aroma this spicy, but it's definitely reminiscent of a pumpkin ale. Seriously has pumpkin in the nose. Cranberries and funky yeast share the spotlight with the spices, though I wish it were free of spice.

Tart fruit, a touch of funk, and some sweetness compose most of the flavor. Tart cranberries work well in this mixture. It *is* a bit sweet, but I happen to like that.

Cranbic ranks among my favorite off-the-shelf sours from American brewers. Word on the street is they have no plans to brew this again, and that would be a shame. I love me some Cranbic! (804 characters)

Photo of davey101
4.1/5  rDev -0.7%
look: 4.5 | smell: 4.5 | taste: 4 | feel: 3.5 | overall: 4

No idea what vintage this is, but it is from the thumbprint series rather than the unplugged label. Thanks to woosterbill fro this beer! 12 oz red foil wrapped bottle into a tulip glass.

A - Slightly hazy dark orange body. Has an almost peach hue to it out of the light. One finger off white head formed initially. Settles down to some soapy edging with a ton of lacing and retention.

S - Tart cherries and cranberries. Smooth mixture of oak, vanilla, and funky brett. This is the pleasant form of the dirty sock aroma.

T - Tart and sour cranberry juice initially. This is followed by barrel notes of vanilla and oak. The finish is yeasty with a bit of spice and cinnamon. Funky notes linger around with the mouth puckering tartness. Mouth feel is spritzy and medium bodied, almost syrupy.

O - New Glarus makes some of the best fruit beers in America in my opinion. This is an awesome cranberry wild ale. Really tart and refreshing. I wish I had access to this stuff. (974 characters)

Photo of thain709
4.27/5  rDev +3.4%
look: 4 | smell: 4.5 | taste: 4 | feel: 4.5 | overall: 4.5

I'm not sure about the vintage date on this one as it was pulled from Deuane's basement. Thanks man!

A - Pours with a clear golden body that showcases some darker ruby highlights...the head was thin and white in color and dissipated quickly to just a ring...a few patches of lacing

S - This one is sweet and full of tart cranberries...they give off a little juiciness, but the sweetness is foremost...nothing else stands out above it

T - The flavors are sweet, juicy, and tart...the cranberries were a good choice as they are the right amount of tart and adding some candied sugar cranks up the sweetness level...not getting too much spice or yeast coming through, which isn't problem...there is an underlying grape flavor that lends itself to being winey sometimes, but again, not a bad thing

M - Light bodied...tart, refreshing, bubbly,

O - I really enjoyed this one...I wish I would have been able to grab a few more bottles from the basement...some might say it's too sweet, but I think the cranberries were the right choice (1,034 characters)

Photo of jegross2
3.44/5  rDev -16.7%
look: 3 | smell: 4 | taste: 3 | feel: 4 | overall: 3.5

Reviewing the Cran-bic Ale from New Glarus Brewing Company. Full disclosure upfront: not a fan of sours generally.
Score: 84

2011 vintage bottle served in a New Glarus flute and enjoyed on 04/23/12.

Appearance: Pours a cider color with a thin layer of bubble head that quickly dissipates into a pencil thin ring around the glass. Minimal lacing, poor retention. 3/5

Smell: Tart cranberries, granny smith apples and a little white grape. Hawaiian punch and little sweet vinegar sour aroma too. Nice sweet-and-sour aroma. 3.75/5

Taste: Tart, sweet-and-sour cranberries and grape upfront, with a light yeasty twang, subsides into a funky/sweet cranberry flavor on the back half. I like how the beer starts, but I do not like how it finishes so funky. Decent puckering effect. Very straightforward and one dimensional. The funky finish gets a little less funky as the beer layers. Has a light sweet rice vinegar and cranberry linger -- less crisp than expected given its effervescence. 3.25/5

Mouthfeel: Light bodied, lively carbonation. Champagne-like mouthfeel. Very prickly on the tongue. Sweet, sugary and dry. 4/5

Overall: Certainly not a bad beer; this is one of the better fruit beers I have encountered. However, an off-puttingly funky finish really ruins what would have otherwise been a really solid beer.

Recommendation: Fans of Smirnoff Ice will probably love this. I'm sure sour fans will also like this one a lot too.

Pairings: Apple walnut salad with balsamic or raspberry vinaigrette dressing.

Cost: $2.99 for a 12 oz bottle or $10.99 for a four pack. (1,572 characters)

Photo of derkfromwi
4.28/5  rDev +3.6%
look: 4.5 | smell: 4 | taste: 4.5 | feel: 4.5 | overall: 4

A: Half-inch white head, extremely clear amber-golden color, very good carbonation, satisfactory lacing

S: Tart cranberry, bit of funkiness, earthy, some straw or wheat (can't pinpoint it)

T: Sweet cranberry up-front that quickly becomes tart and sour, some funk, oak

M: Smooth and creamy, decent carbonation, gets the whole tongue involved

O: Good stuff, maybe just a touch too sweet to give it a 4.5 for me, hope they bring this back soon (448 characters)

Photo of jmarsh123
4.3/5  rDev +4.1%
look: 4 | smell: 4 | taste: 4.5 | feel: 4 | overall: 4.5

Pours a clear orange/red with a small off-white head.

Aroma features a distinct tartness with a little bit of wheat malt.

Wonderful tart cranberry on the flavor. Light and effervescent with a subtle sourness.

Fairly light with good carbonation.

Another hit from New Glarus. They've got the fruited stuff dialed in. Just a bit tart with a nice light refreshing flavor. (371 characters)

Photo of kevanb
4.09/5  rDev -1%
look: 3.5 | smell: 4.5 | taste: 4 | feel: 4 | overall: 4

The beer has a nice clear honey color, hints of orange and in a weird way, neon pink, with lots of bubbles rising to the glass, very effervescent. A thin wispy white head sits atop the beer for mere moments before receding, leaving behind a thin trace of film. Tart cranberries leap out of the glass, very tart, possibly with some spicing, the funk is somewhat mild but still a nice addition, the aroma reminds me of a nice cranberry sauce during the holidays. The flavors a bit sweeter, much more sugary, but the cranberry flavor is in full force and the tartness cuts down on the sugary aspects. Some faint oak, a little yeast, but the is almost like cranberry soda. The body is nice, very light and bubbly, not uncommon for a beer of this style though it compliments the flavors very well, doesn't get too heavy.

Verdict: Really tasty fruit lambic, it's a bit one dimensional and almost like a fruit soda, but that doesn't make it any less enjoyable. If you can find this limited release, stock up!  (1,006 characters)

Photo of DovaliHops
4.23/5  rDev +2.4%
look: 4.5 | smell: 4 | taste: 4.5 | feel: 4 | overall: 4

Pours a slightly hazy orange-amber with a hint of pink. Small white head that disappears quickly. Scent is slightly tart cranberry aroma with hints of strawberry. Very juicy aroma with a hint of spice and some subtle oak aromas. Taste is initially a little bit tart, followed by sweet strawberry flavors. There are hints of cranberry, but not really getting that sharp, bitter cranberry flavor. Nice combo of sweet and tart. I hate when fruit beers are overly sweet, and this one has quite the balance to it. Nice oak flavors with the fruit. Mouthfeel is somewhat "spritzy"...soda like. Light bodied but full of flavor. Drinkability is very high. I could honestly sip on this all day on a warm summer day. Overall, I tend to like my wild ales on the more sour side, but somehow New Glarus came up with a way to add a good amount of fruity sweetness and get me to really enjoy it. Much better than Raspberry Tart. (912 characters)

Photo of chugalug06
4.18/5  rDev +1.2%
look: 4.5 | smell: 4 | taste: 4 | feel: 4.5 | overall: 4.5

Very flat looking pour. Not too much carbonation. Very nice clarity in an orange and pink brew. Near perfect for the style.

Lots of sugar and spice! The cranberries play second fiddle to the spiciness.

Very spiced and slightly tart. This could really stand to be more tart, it's slightly bitter, but not annoyingly. Very sweet and perfectly carbonated.

A great NG Fruit brew. This brew is definitely NOT a Am. Wild Ale... It's a Lambic, just read the label. I judged it as a Lambic, not Wild. Every NG brew i've had I would highly recommend, this one is no different. Thanks Nick for sharing the great brew! (612 characters)

Photo of birchstick
3.94/5  rDev -4.6%
look: 3 | smell: 4 | taste: 4 | feel: 4 | overall: 4

A - soft reddish orange without much of a head on it

S - cranberry and fruits with spicy belgian yeast

T - sweet citric lambic upfront washes down to cranberries and some tartness. The cranberries take the driver seat for a bit and has some oak in the mix with it. This beer reminds me of their belgian red made with cranberries, which is pretty solid.

M - a little spritzy and dry on the finish

D - good lambic / fruit beer from this side of the pond. I need to get some more of this. (489 characters)

Photo of Alieniloquium
3.48/5  rDev -15.7%
look: 3.5 | smell: 3 | taste: 3.5 | feel: 3.5 | overall: 4

12 oz. bottle poured into an Allagash chalice.

Appearance - As it pours, it looks a golden body with a reddish tinge. The more than goes into the glass, the darker it gets. By the end it's amber with a pinkish hue and almost no head.

Smell - Cranberry and some tartness. No funk or anything else reminiscent of a lambic.

Taste - Tart cranberry that builds a bit before giving way to a sweet fruity finish. I don't really know I would be able to distinguish it as cranberry from just a sour cherry. In fact, it reminds me a lot of Wisconsin Belgian Red.

Mouthfeel - As a lambic or any other wild, the mouthfeel is far too sweet. As a fruit beer, it's nice. Light and fruity. Nice on a hot day.

Overall - Not really a wild ale... and especially not a lambic, despite the name and the description from NG. Still a nice beer. (826 characters)

Photo of pmlondrigan
3.75/5  rDev -9.2%
look: 4.5 | smell: 4.5 | taste: 3 | feel: 4 | overall: 4

Huge thanks to Mark (rempo) for this extra.
Pours a bright orange with a pink hue. Nice tight white carbonation. Head remains but becomes thin, perfectly transparent, you can see co2 rising up to the top to escape. Smells tart! Cherry, cranberry and light lactic lemon sourness. Smells amazing. A bit of damp wood. First sip is like a sweet tart. Cranberry soda, lemon tartness, a little lactic hit, then more sugar. A bit of oak at the end, sweet finish. There is just so much fruit in this beer. Just a little too sweet for me, but it is tart and i do like that part. As you sip it is spritzy in the mouth. Co2 explosions, it's rather a good thing. Sorry but I need this to be drier and have a funk component to it, but otherwise the other parts of this beer are spot on! (773 characters)

Photo of mdfb79
4.33/5  rDev +4.8%
look: 4.5 | smell: 4 | taste: 4.5 | feel: 4 | overall: 4.5

From 02/19/12 notes. Received from JYounger30 in the Birthday BIF; thanks Jay! Love the fruit beers I've had from NG so far so have been wanting to try this one. 12 oz. bottle poured into my Duvel tulip. 2010 vintage.

a - Pours a murky reddish-orange color with one inch of fluffy white head and low carbonation evident.

s - Smells of sour cranberries, yeast, spice, oak, and lightly sour dark fruits. Nice and the cranberries are there, but not too sour.

t - Tastes of sour cranberries, tart dark fruits, funk, oak, spices, acedic, apples, and some yeast. Taste is a lot more sour and funky then the nose. Great, and a step up.

m - Medium body and moderate carbonation. Crisp, and easy to drink.

o - Overall I thought this was a great fruit -forward wild ale. The nose is a tiny bit sour, but the taste is nice and sour/funky. Easy to drink, would love to get more of this one. (883 characters)

Photo of spdyfire83
4.17/5  rDev +1%
look: 4 | smell: 4.5 | taste: 4 | feel: 4.5 | overall: 4

192nd Review
Bottle to snifter

From notes.

A: Medium cranberry. Single (bubbly white) fingernail head on medium pour.

S: Smells like Ocean Spray cranberry juice. Loads of sweetness and hints of raspberry and cherry. Touch of oak, but (again) mostly cranberry sweetness.

T: Sticks to the name...cranberry all throughout. Touch of sourness is welcoming and there is a slight oakie tint near the end. Refreshing.

M: Light bodied with moderate carbonation.

O: This beer is quite refreshing and so easy to drink. Great for a warm summer night and a fun twist for a beer. (572 characters)

Photo of Mebuzzard
4.39/5  rDev +6.3%
look: 3.5 | smell: 4.5 | taste: 4.5 | feel: 4 | overall: 4.5

This is a solid beer from NG. While I think the Raspberry and Cherry are a bit sugary, this one is well balanced. It has just enough cranberry to justify the name, but not enough to make that pucker-face. The tannin is just right, the juiciness is just right. I would say it's just a bit thin, and tastes more like a cider, hence the scores. Very refreshing. Better served cold (377 characters)

Photo of Mantooth
3.78/5  rDev -8.5%
look: 4.5 | smell: 4 | taste: 3.5 | feel: 3.5 | overall: 4

Poured from a well-appointed 12 oz bottle (extra in a brew-swap with Robtobfest, thanks man!) into a Unibroue tulip glass.

A: WOW - looks like a Kool-Aid color, rosey orange and clear as a bell. Pours with very little head, some laid back lacing throughout and some faint bubble trails of carbonation.

S: There's the cranberry but also some distinctively Belgian notes of banana, vanilla and maybe a little clove.

T: There's some definite sugar present but a nice gob of cranberry bitterness as well, especially coming down the home stretch.

M: Creamy and fairly thick with berries, culminating in a happy palate coated in a thin oily residue.

O: Is this a lambic? I don't think so. It is, however, a very interesting brew. It's a smidge too sweet for my taste, too bad it wasn't dialed back a bit to reveal more of the bitterness of the berry. That being said, cheers to New Glarus, this is an ambitious brew I look forward to trying again. (946 characters)

Photo of kawilliams81
4.32/5  rDev +4.6%
look: 4 | smell: 4.5 | taste: 4.5 | feel: 4 | overall: 4

Served in a D'Achouffe tulip.

A- Light pink with a 2 finger white head. Some blotches of lacing remain on the glass.

S- Sweet and tart raspberries and cranberries, with just a hint of vinegar.

T- Very sweet raspberries followed quickly by a big tartness and vinegar. Finishes rather sweet.

M- Light body with high carbonation. Tingly, fizzy mouth that lingers afterwards.

O- Love this beer. Not as complex our sour/wild as Enigma but just an amazing fruit wild ale. Hoping to find more of this! (499 characters)

Photo of Phelps
4.1/5  rDev -0.7%
look: 4 | smell: 4 | taste: 4 | feel: 4 | overall: 4.5

Sent by seeswo during the Blind Beers BIF, this was a blind 12-ounce poured into a flute. Per the rules, I reviewed the beer blind.

The brew’s a soft tangerine with gentle haze. A one-finger, cream-colored head fizzles away after a few seconds, leaving behind a thin ring.

Wicked taht nose, packed with balsamic vinegar and accented by a fair amount of barnyard funk, sweet cola, burnt sugar, a touch of green apple and buttery oak. Very nice.

The flavor reflects the nose perfectly, starting with the same impressive sour character that squeezes the tongue with force. Balsamic, green apple and cranberry play off oak and caramel. Very buttery, the richness carries long into the finish.

Mild yet prickly carbonation breaks the brew into just a bit of fizz. Nicely viscous medium body. The tartness builds after each sip and the alcohol warms the throat just a bit.

Very refreshing. As lambics go, it’s a lot sweeter than I’m used to, but I love the malty, fruity flavors in this one. The tartness is snappy, the malty body provides a nice, sweet base. As with most beers New Glarus makes, were I in Wisconsin, I’d buy oodles of this. (1,149 characters)

Photo of dcloeren
4.42/5  rDev +7%
look: 4 | smell: 4.5 | taste: 4.5 | feel: 4 | overall: 4.5

Thanks to joshuacavett for sharing.

Review from notes...

Poured a clear and crisp ruby red an ample amount of carbonation that really just fizzed for a moment and disappeard.

Very enticing notes of tart cranberries with great acidic characteristics along with subtle notes of cinnamon.

Tart cranberry, cinnamon, nutmeg, woody notes with some great lactic characteristics as well. I thought that this beer had a little funk on it as well. Very delicious.

Medium body, very crisp, medium carbonation with a slightly sticky finish.

Overall this was a treat of a beer for sure. Very easy drinking and complex at the same time. I would definitely love to get my hands on some more. (683 characters)

Photo of Nachojon
3.25/5  rDev -21.3%
look: 4 | smell: 4 | taste: 3 | feel: 2.5 | overall: 3

A- Very interesting looking beer. Looks like a Rose Champagne with less carbonation.

S- Smells like sweet cranberry juice.

T- Just too sweet for me. Not enough tart, well really it's just not tart. Regular cranberry juice has more bite. It's so sugary. It tastes like cranberry juice, soda water and simple.

M- Sugary tongue feel like Mountain Dew. This is not a good thing.

O- Very unimpressed. Reading the label makes me like it less. It's not a lambic, sorry. (470 characters)

Photo of Viciousknishs
4.17/5  rDev +1%
look: 3.5 | smell: 4 | taste: 4.5 | feel: 4 | overall: 4

A- pours a garnet red color with a minimal off white head. Poor head retention.

S- sweet caramel, juicy stewed cranberry and funky aromas.

T- sweet sugary stewed cranberries and funk. Caramel favors in the middle. Finishes tart and funky with a lingering fruit flavor.

D- superbly drinkable

Overalls delicious brew with amazing fruit flavor. (345 characters)

Photo of scottfrie
3.19/5  rDev -22.8%
look: 3 | smell: 4 | taste: 3 | feel: 2.5 | overall: 3

12oz bottle. Thanks goes to rudylaw for this one.

A: Pours a murky rudy brown color with a very short lived, thin off-white head that disappeared into a faint collar that left almost no lace.
S: Fruity, sweet and dry notes of red fruits, oak, light earthy funk and a bit of sweat.
T: Sweet fruits with a decent cranberry flavor followed by ambiguous citrus and red berries. There is a bit of gritty dry oak tannins and fruit skins as well. The finish is very sweet, almost syrup like, and the finish is lightly tart with flavors of cranberries.
M: Sweet, syrupy and slick mouthfeel, tingly carbonation and a medium-full body.
O: Much sweeter with less cranberry than expected. Pretty simple and syrupy. (707 characters)

Photo of FosterJM
3.75/5  rDev -9.2%
look: 3.5 | smell: 3.5 | taste: 4 | feel: 4 | overall: 3.5

1006th Review on BA
Bottle to Bruery Tulip
12 oz

Thanks to erikkoppin for this one.

App- The color of peach juice and water. Very shimmery in the light. No head really formed. Maybe a small small amount of bubbles. Very smooth liquid oily pour.

Smell- Very sweet on the nose. A bit much of a sugary sweet fruit. The cranberries are very forward with a tingly dry cherry note against it.

Taste- Certainly has a juicy lambic taste behind it and had a nice taste for a wild ale. A little damp, a little dank and some sour behind it. Very fruit with the cranberry/cherry combo from nose coming into the taste. Much like Founders Ceries w/o the wheat base behind it.

Mouth- A lighter medium body with a medium thick carbonation. Smooth fruit and a tad tart/sour residual flavors.

Drink- Tasty, fruity and a bit thick to me. Had a nice depth of flavor with some sour and some sweet fruits. I like what New Glarus does with their fruit beers. Glad this one was a 12oz. Don't think I could do more. (996 characters)

Photo of schmoopsbeer
4.32/5  rDev +4.6%
look: 3.5 | smell: 4 | taste: 4.5 | feel: 4.5 | overall: 4.5

Color: A pale pinkish red. A nice white one finger head forms at top of this brew after the pour. It slowly reduces to a dime sized ring around the edge of the glass. Little to lacing, some minor head retention is left behind.
big thanks to ultraman and millah for hooking me p with bottles of this

bottle poured into Bruery tulip

Nose: What else.... cranberries. Also evident as the beer warms up are a mild oakiness, barnyard funk, and some minor raspberry scent.

Palate: Sublime! This beer is very drinkable and the carbonation is spot on. This beer is light in body, but it packs plenty of texture and complexity. Full of ripe fruit. The cranberries coat the mouth with a pleasant sourness. The oak texture, funk, and wild yeast/bacteria add to the character of this beer on the tongue.

Finish: Delicious and please can I have another. It finishes a a tad on the dry side, but totally like the style. The cranberries linger a bit as does the sourness of the beer, but its welcomed. An achievement by New Glarus. well done.

Rating: 96 out of 100 (1,053 characters)

Unplugged Cranbic Ale from New Glarus Brewing Company
92 out of 100 based on 318 ratings.