Dismiss Notice
Hello, is it beer you're looking for?

Learn more about beer. Get 12 issues / year of BeerAdvocate magazine for as low as 68% off the single issue price.

Subscribe now →

Serendipity - New Glarus Brewing Company

Not Rated.

Educational use only; do not reuse.

242 Reviews
no score

(Send Samples)
Reviews: 242
Hads: 2,450
Avg: 4.35
pDev: 31.26%
Wants: 503
Gots: 645 | FT: 89
Brewed by:
New Glarus Brewing Company visit their website
Wisconsin, United States

Style | ABV
Fruit / Vegetable Beer |  4.00% ABV

Availability: Rotating

Notes & Commercial Description:
Beer added by: Lemke10 on 10-15-2012

Severe Drought, we shared the farmer’s horror as Wisconsin’s cherry crop failed! Dan bought what cherries he could. The Apple crop fared better. Then joy! A grand Wisconsin cranberry harvest. What will Dan brew with Apples, Cranberries and Cherries? Oh my! You hold the happy accident of Wisconsin’s favorite fruit aged in oak with an almost magical wild fermentation. Serendipity is a wondrous celebration that sparkles your senses and dances across your palate. A kaleidoscope of flavor discovered by accident in a sour ale!

Cheers to the unexpected.
Beer: Reviews & Ratings
Sort by:  Recent | High | Low | Top Raters
Reviews: 242 | Hads: 2,450
Photo of KTCamm
4.24/5  rDev -2.5%
look: 4 | smell: 5 | taste: 4 | feel: 4 | overall: 4

Poured from a 25 ounce bottle into a wine glass.

Light orange red, active bubbles. No foam. Fruity smell, mixture of apples, cherries, cranberries. Malty backbone. Tart flavor throughout, fades out. Tart close. Light and flavorful. Super fruity. Really good.

 259 characters

Photo of 1000lbgrizzly
4.24/5  rDev -2.5%
look: 4.5 | smell: 4.25 | taste: 4.25 | feel: 4 | overall: 4.25

Great label, wonderful red/pink body with great clarity, plenty of effervescence (but really, upgrade or discontinue your bottle-waxing methods; they're nastily thin, crumbly things, no offense intended.) Smells and tastes fruity; strawberry, apple, cherry, cranberry, raspberry, even blackberry and blueberry could be imposed. I could be more specific if I wanted to scrutinize it, but this beer begs to be simply enjoyed and to welcome the refreshingly sweet, tart, fruity flavor and smell. Moderately-handed saccharine quality, but appreciable, especially with the carbonation and easy-to-enjoy flavors.

We all drink beer to get some degree of buzz, so I'd bet those who can't handle a sweeter beer would like a higher ABV to reach their destination before their sweetness gag reflex interposes, but for one with a serious sweet tooth such as myself, I appreciated the entire bomber, the final mental buzz, but not the longing for a repeat. Summarily, this is mildly alcoholic carbonated fruit juice.

 1,004 characters

Photo of DeanMoriarty
4.24/5  rDev -2.5%
look: 4 | smell: 4.25 | taste: 4.25 | feel: 4.25 | overall: 4.25

Was fortunate enough to get this bottle in a trade with anticipation23. Poured into an Odell's branded tulip glass.

Pours a hazed rusty hue with copper high-lights when held up to a light source, tan head with nice lacing. A lot of fresh apples and tart cherries on the nose, the cranberry is noticeable but toned down compared to the others, very slight hint of barrel funk. Just like the nose, the apples and cherries make up a big part of the overall flavor, the finish is slightly tart from the cherries and cranberries with a touch of that barrel funk that was in the nose as well. The mouthfeel is lightly effervescent with small bubbles, silky smooth with a dry finish.

 677 characters

Photo of Gobearswalter34
4.24/5  rDev -2.5%
look: 4 | smell: 4.25 | taste: 4.25 | feel: 4.25 | overall: 4.25

Another wonderful fruit beer from the caves of New Glarus! Awesome Apple. Can mix with stouts as well. The smell is amazing. Sweet but not overly sugary.

 157 characters

Photo of papat444
4.25/5  rDev -2.3%

Thanks to Tricerahops for this one.

Aroma of apples predominantly but some cherries present. Initial flavor is a healthy mix of apples and cherries. Cranberries are in the finish and resemble the dried fruit variety, texture and all. Surprisingly not tart but more on the sweet side. Very good stuff.

 301 characters

Photo of dar482
4.25/5  rDev -2.3%
look: 4.25 | smell: 4.25 | taste: 4.25 | feel: 4.25 | overall: 4.25

The beer pours in a clear ruby red color.

The aroma hits exactly as expected. It punches with sweet and tart apple and then a punch of juicy cranberry, with a bit of funk.

The flavor has a tart apple in the front and then a sweet cranberry and slight cherry flavor on the end. It hits all notes. It drinks very well with the balance of tartness and sweetness.

There's a champagne like carbonation that rolls around.

It's a well done beer, but it is a bit too reminiscent of Martinelli's Apple Cider.

 503 characters

Photo of ONUMello
4.25/5  rDev -2.3%
look: 4.25 | smell: 4.25 | taste: 4.25 | feel: 4.25 | overall: 4.25

750ml bottle poured into a tulip
A: Held up to light it reveals a brownish-red color. A 1+ finger head lingers forever
S: Apple is primary, then cherry then cranberry. Smells more fruit juice than beer, but the aromas are pure
T: Like the nose, mostly fruit. The apple is still primary but the cranberry comes through second, least cherry. A hint of wheat to round it out
M: Light-bodied, sweet but not overly so, super smooth
O: I was hoping for a bit of funk/sour with the wild fermentation mentioned but it's still a darn tasty beer with pure fruit flavors

 559 characters

Photo of BWED
4.25/5  rDev -2.3%
look: 4.25 | smell: 4.25 | taste: 4.25 | feel: 4.25 | overall: 4.25

25 oz. bottle poured into a tulip.

A- Amber, red highlighting. Delicate faint tan head. Retention is okay. Tiny speckles of lacing and there is a slight haze in the body.

S- Cherry and cranberry. I can smell the tartness.

T- Cherry and apple come through in flavor. Cranberry finish. Very faint malt background.

M- Bubbly juicy and a little tart. Light and fruity. Refreshing.

O- Really tasty. Shys away from the malt and hops, but delivers a nice lambic quality.

 469 characters

Photo of darthvohn
4.25/5  rDev -2.3%

Glass Used: Nonic

Appearance: This poured a very murky reddish brown color. A thick bone white head formed and dissipated in a quick manner.

Smell: A swirl of scents are intertwined here. You get the green apple and cranberry first then cherry on the back end. That's if you're really trying to pick those fruits a part. On a second sniff, I got candied apple all up in my nose.

Taste: The cranberry-apple flavors pop first, then a quick transition to a cherry finish. As this baby warms, it gets more tart.

Mouthfeel: Medium-high carbonation. A bit prickly at each sip. A medium thickness on the tongue.

Overall: The best fruit beer I've had hands down. I love the sweet-tart balance along with how each fruit profile plays together so well on the palate. If I'm ever in New Glarus' neighborhood, I'm making time to visit and trying their other fruit offerings.

 868 characters

Photo of LambicPentameter
4.26/5  rDev -2.1%
look: 4.25 | smell: 4.5 | taste: 4.25 | feel: 3.75 | overall: 4.25

Thanks to BA Stevedore for sending this in trade.

Enjoyed out of a 25 oz green bottle with black wax around the neck and cap. No dating information that I can find. Poured into a Boulevard Smokestack tulip glass.

Appearance - Standard pour yields a two-finger head of pinkish tan, thick and frothy, with a few larger bubbles up around the top that start to burst slowly. Begins to dissipate gently, taking a good 4-5 minutes before the foam is completely gone, leaving zero lacing on the sides of the glass or along the edges of the beer. Body is a deep, garnet red that reminds me of cranberry juice. Not really hazy, but certainly not completely translucent.

Smell - Cherries, cranberry, honeycrisp apple sweetness, some fainter elements of spice--like nutmeg perhaps?--that lend a tiny hint of baked pastry to the smell. There is a light acidity to the aroma, but it's mostly fruity sweetness. As it warms, that acidity becomes even harder to detect.

Taste - Delicious! Notes of cranberry juice, cherry sourness, some crisper apple notes and an underlying tartness that comes right up to the edge, but doesn't quite pass into full-on sour territory. Tart fruit and I love how the cranberry aftertaste contributes some faintly bitter dryness to the otherwise almost cloyingly sweet flavors.

Mouthfeel - Medium-bodied and close to syrupy, with light carbonation and a mostly sweet finish that has drier elements.

Overall, this might be the king of full-on fruit beers. As with any fruit beer, there is considerable sweetness, but this one uses the combination of fruits to balance the sweetness with some cleaner, drier flavors. I would gladly drink this one again, were it to fall into my lap.

 1,701 characters

Photo of portia99
4.27/5  rDev -1.8%
look: 4 | smell: 4.5 | taste: 4.25 | feel: 4 | overall: 4.25

750ml bottle poured into an Idle Hands tulip.

A - Pours a medium red color almost a rose wine color. A small cap of fizzy off-whitish tan head lingers briefly and leaves a small collar around the edges. Sparse lacing left on the glass.

S - Extremely fruity aromatics with multiple layers...tons of sweet cherry aroma in the forefront, not quite Luden's cherry cough drops, but close. Cranberries come on after that with their slightly tart and fruity aromas. Apples give a mild acidity and slightly cidery/winey aspect to it. Hints of vanilla and I think I'm imagining some white chocolate notes as well.

T - Flavor is dominated by the cherry and cranberry...fruitiness is very high here with the two combining nicely. Cherries are leader but blend so well with the cranberry. Fruity tartness is very nice - apples and cranberries combine well to create a crispness. Rather sweet beer overall - sugary, fruity and juicy.

M - Light, fizzy carbonation over a lightish body. Crisp, tart, sweet, juicy and refreshing. I think carbonation could be a bit higher - could use a bit more life/tingle to it. Sweetness and fruitiness really make this feel like a juice more than a beer.

O - Overall - very good fruit beer. So much fruity and juicy character, almost seems like an Ocean Spray juice blend more than a beer. Carbonation is light contributing to the juice character. Alcohol is not existent and doesn't even show its minimal 4% at all. Another outstanding fruit beer from New Glarus.

 1,490 characters

Photo of DefenCorps
4.27/5  rDev -1.8%
look: 4.5 | smell: 4.25 | taste: 4.25 | feel: 4.25 | overall: 4.25

Thrilled to finally get to try this. IMO, no one does fruit beers like Dan does. Thank you, Jeremy.

A mildly hazy mahogany with reddish highlights and a dense, light brown head with excellent retention and lacing. The nose is the purest, most exuberant expression of fruit I've experienced in a beer in quite some time. The apples burst out of the glass, bright, ripe, fresh and with cider notes. The cranberries lend an acidity, along with a nice aroma, while the cherries add a wonderful fleshy sweetness. The oak barrel fermentation is really nicely done, with a blend of vanilla and a touch of oak to go with the brown malt and caramel base. To my nose, New Glarus's fruit beers have always had a singularly unique profile, a deeply complex blend of mellow yeast and what I can only describe as terroir, and this beer is no different. Marvelous.

The palate opens with the bite of cranberries, tart and refreshing , before segueing into the cherry and apple flavors. The apple character is a blend of sweet and mildly tart apples, a blend of Gala and Pink Lady apples, I am tempted to imagine. The cherry character is a blend of dark red and near black cherries, a deep, fleshy flavor. Behind all of this is a mild malt sweetness, a blend of caramel and a little brown sugar. A touch of vanilla is also perceived. Medium in body and With a soft, creamy carbonation, this feels nice on the palate. Just a touch watery on the finish, the dominant lingering flavor is apple. Beautiful stuff, this is more cider than beer IMO. Very highly recommended.

 1,555 characters

Photo of BEERchitect
4.27/5  rDev -1.8%
look: 4 | smell: 4.5 | taste: 4.25 | feel: 4 | overall: 4.25

Self-proclaimed as a "kaleidoscope of flavor", necessity yields art as the common cherry crops petered out and forced improvisation to take place. So, when life gives you lemons, then you make beer!

Peach-gold in color and with a kiss of mauve, the ale pours with pectin haze that's unadulterated from any filtration. Spritzy carbonation thrusts through the medium-dense body for form a champagne-type foam before settling into a creamy and scattered foam stance. Retention tries to trickle, but a quick swirl regenerates with ease. Ivory-white in its foam, the ale laces spottily yet consistently.

Tart fruitiness and sweet pulp play out from nose to finish. Its upstart is bright and vibrant with a plethora of orchard and tropical fruit aromas and tastes. Reminding the early palate of fusion fruit juices, its the culmination of cranberry, cherry and apple that cry out its fruit additions. Yet is fermented character provides the dry ale-like underpinnings that keep the individual fruit flavors from becoming obviously so. Balanced by natural acidity, its a sharper lime-like crispness and a tinge of musty dried fruit that offset the sweetness of the fruit to perfection.

Its mid-dry body allows for effortless drinkability and a high level of refreshment. Tart effervescence gives the fruit a lift and allows a peppery bite and slight astringency to balance its after texture. The tartness masks alcohol and allows for light fruit flavors to linger in aftertaste.

The ale is quite serendipitous indeed. Where drier Belgian sour ales often loose their fruit identity and the sweeter ones are sickly- this improvised ale lands right between for full fruit appreciation and without distracting cloying. Its a beautiful beer for most occasions- from complements to summer salads to the most esteemed celebration cheers.

 1,829 characters

Photo of brstls4drmrs
4.27/5  rDev -1.8%
look: 4.5 | smell: 5 | taste: 4 | feel: 4 | overall: 4

A - pours a foamy translucent red liquid with a heavy white foam. Very good lacing.

S - this is where it takes the cake for me. Lots of fruit in there with some heavy cherry and light apple. Some light spice along with blackberry and hints of raspberry and cranberry. Smells like a powdery berry sweetart.

T - a nice cherry, cranberry bomb with some sourness as well. The sour isn't overpowering which was nice for me. A good balance between sweet and sour.

M - medium to high carbonation with a nice tart finish.

O - not bad at all. I really liked this one.

 566 characters

Photo of Dope
4.29/5  rDev -1.4%
look: 4 | smell: 4.25 | taste: 4.25 | feel: 4.25 | overall: 4.5

A: Pours a dark red with some brown in it. Good sized fluffy offwhite head. Good head retention. Only moderate little streaks of lacing.

S: Nice aroma. Sweet, ripe apples and cherries.

T: Sweet apples and cherries up front again. Really nice. Sweetness runs out and there's a sudden twang of tart fruits instead with the apples and cherries. Cranberries kick in for an extra tartness in the finish. Lingering cranberry juice in the aftertaste.

M: Surprisingly medium bodied for only 4%. Nice and smooth and clean too.

O: Awesome fruit beer. Not quite as good as the Raspberry and Cherry versions but it's a very close 3rd. Pretty amazing that one brewery can make the top 3 fruit beers. Magic touch I guess. Wonderful strong flavors from only 4% ABV too. Great fruit beer.

 778 characters

Photo of JD_Bogerdy
4.29/5  rDev -1.4%
look: 3.5 | smell: 4.5 | taste: 4.25 | feel: 4.5 | overall: 4.25

A: brownish with a slight red hue. Mocha head that dissipates quickly. Not what I was expecting at all.

S: ripe tart cranberries dominate, followed by apple. This smells incredible!

T: Follows the nose. Cranberries come on strong up front followed by a slight apple acidity. The cherries come on much more as it warms. Mild tartness which balances the sweetness well. A little more tartness would probably suit it well, but I'm not complaining. Delicious!

M: perfect amount of carbonation for the style. No complaints on mouthfeel.

O: this beer is fantastic. A little more tartness or a little less sweet and it would be near perfect. One of the best fruit beers I've had. Recommended.

 690 characters

Photo of RoamingGnome
4.29/5  rDev -1.4%
look: 4 | smell: 4.25 | taste: 4.25 | feel: 4.25 | overall: 4.5

New Glarus Serendipity.

750 ml bottle split with my wife. She'll drink fruit beers, and that's it. Luckily New Glarus makes some good ones, and they're readily available. Served chilled in accompanying New Glarus glassware.

A) Cranberry red with two fingers of pinkish head. The head slowly dissipated, until none remained. No lacing...

S) I picked up a good amount of cranberry, blended with ripe apple juices. There is a faint cherry aroma. There is a sweet tart thing going on here for sure.

T) The flavor definitely follows the nose. The cherry is more prevalent in the taste, especially on the backend. Starts out sweet, with an aftertaste that is just slightly tart.

M) Medium bodied with moderate carbonation. It's pretty refreshing. Finishes a bit dry.

O) New Glarus knows how to make fantastic fruit beers. This is no exception.

 844 characters

Photo of ONovoMexicano
4.3/5  rDev -1.1%
look: 4.5 | smell: 4.5 | taste: 4.25 | feel: 4 | overall: 4.25

Poured from the bomber into a Belgian tulip.

A- Two-finger thick head, cream- colored and frothy, it reminds me of how a cider would look as I pour it. The color is reddish brown but opaque and there is steady carbonation present.

S- This has an intense aroma that hits me from the moment the bottle is cracked. Cherry and apple blast my nose, as does a cider aroma. There's something candy-like to the aroma too, plus fermented fruit and sour mash. Then I realize there's a similarity to Starburst with this brew.

T- Taste is like the nose suggested. It's tart, cidery, candy-like with a good blend of apple, cherry and some dry cranberry flavors that I didn't immediately pick up on. There's some cherry peel in there, and I'm talking like real fruit stand and not some artificial flavor.

M- As I mentioned above, this brew is slightly dry, cider-like, semi-tart, but still somewhat like drinking juice. I found it to be a bit sweeter than I like, not completely cloying but still a bit much.

In the end, a good treat and very memorable, although it doesn't quite qualify as a must-have beer for me.

 1,108 characters

Photo of jmarsh123
4.3/5  rDev -1.1%
look: 4 | smell: 4 | taste: 4.5 | feel: 4 | overall: 4.5

Thanks to jegross2 for the bottle hook up.

Pours red/purple with a light pink frothy head. Little retention or lacing.

Lots of tart cranberry and cherry. Light malts. Mostly fruit aromas.

Tart berries and tons of fruitiness throughout although it never gets too sweet and syrupy like the other NG fruit beers. Not a lot of malt profile, but what's there is clean.

Smooth and somewhat creamy with spot on carbonation levels.

Very drinkable beer and the extra tartness helps keep the beer from getting too sweet which is my main complaint about the Belgian Red and Raspberry Tart. Miles better than either of those and I hope this becomes a staple.

 651 characters

Photo of deadonhisfeet
4.3/5  rDev -1.1%
look: 4 | smell: 4 | taste: 4.5 | feel: 4 | overall: 4.5

Poured from a bottle into a La Fin Du Monde snifter. The pour is crystal-clear and cranberry-red with some nice bubbles streaming from the bottom. There is 2 fingers of nice, fluffy head that dissipates rather quickly. The nose has lots of tart cranberry aromas. I also get the apples and, to a lesser extent, cherries.

The beer has a light body and a nice, bubbly mouthfeel. I get lots of fruit flavors, primarily sweet and sour cranberry and apple (cherries definitely take a back seat). The beer is quite sweet, but it feels like a natural sweetness and it is well-balanced by tartness from the cranberries. The finish is also quite fruity, puckery, and has a wine-like tannic feel, drying out the mouth and leaving flavors of cranberries lingering behind.
It is extremely drinkable and should be tart enough to please fans of spontaneously-fermented beers.

I just loved this beer. It was the first of 3 New Glarus beers I traded for that I get to enjoy and already it was the most intensely-flavored fruit beer I have ever had. It had such intense flavors, it was almost like drinking fruit juice. I suppose that might not appeal to some beer drinkers, but I really enjoyed it. I wish New Glarus beers like this one were available where I live (I had to trade for this one - thanks ABisonEgo). I wouldn't drink them all the time, but I would definitely crack one open every so often. One word of warning, though. Do NOT buy this beer if you don't like cranberries. Be warned!

 1,481 characters

Photo of jwc215
4.3/5  rDev -1.1%
look: 3.5 | smell: 4 | taste: 4.5 | feel: 4.25 | overall: 4.5

Pours hazed mahogany with a thin wispy head. Dotted lacing sticks.

The smell is of fresh tart apples dipped in caramel with pie crust. Fresh tart fruitiness of apples mixed with cranberries and cherries.

The taste of fresh tart apples, cranberries and cherries is support by sweet caramel. The sour fruitiness dries the mouth in a refreshing way.

It is creamy and smooth.

This is a very well-made fruit beer with a sourness that is pleasant. The fruits taste very real and fresh. A solid malt backing gives balance and support. Very enjoyable! Far above the typical American fruit beer.

 591 characters

Photo of feloniousmonk
4.3/5  rDev -1.1%
look: 3.5 | smell: 4 | taste: 4.5 | feel: 4.25 | overall: 4.5

Serendipity Accidental Fruit Ale, New Glarus Brewing Company, New Glarus, WI.

Clear, dark ruby red coloring, no head to speak of.

Aroma: sharp, tart, and fruity. Cherries and cranberries, with apple way behind, if perceptible at all.

Taste: Bracing, puckering tartness slaps the palate, with juicy fruit behind. Sour, lactic acid returns with each new sip. Body is medium/light. Maybe an itty-bit lighter than I like, but not moreso than the best Belgian lambics out there. Sour fruit flavor is eternal.

Nice one, this. Let's take a moment to read the label description: "Sever Drought, we shared the farmer's horror as Wisconsin's cherry crop failed! Dan bought what cherries he could. The apple crop fared better. Then joy! A grand Wisconsin cranberry harvest. What will Dan brew with Apples, Cranberries, and Cherries? Oh, My! You hold the happy accident of Wisconsin' favorite fruit aged in oak with an almost magical wild fermentation. Serendipity is a wondrous celebration that sparkles your senses and dances across your palate. A kaleidoscope of flavor discovered by accident in a sour ale!"

Oh, yeah, sparkles and dances, that's what I meant to say…Yeah, lots of sparkling and dancing. I don't go in for the poetry when it comes to New Glarus brews, because I know they've probably already beat me to it.

Apples are coming through in the flavor, but are still smothered by the louder, and sourer berries inside. Deliciousness, indeed.

 1,451 characters

Photo of Roguer
4.31/5  rDev -0.9%
look: 4 | smell: 4.25 | taste: 4.5 | feel: 4 | overall: 4.25

Pours a surprisingly strong, ~1 finger beige head atop a dark, cloudy, reddish-brown body. Head fades relatively quickly to a light foamy residue. Virtually no lacing - to be expected.

Smells like a fruit lambic. Slightly vinous and tart; big notes of cherries and cranberries; light wild yeast funkiness; soft sweetness. Any malt (wheat, perhaps) is overwhelmed.

Flavor is exactly what you'd expect from the nose, along with a huge apple complement. Actually, flavor-wise, in terms of strength it goes apple-cranberry-cherry. Extremely sweet ale.

Soft, lively body, sticky with sugary goodness and with a long, wet, slightly astringent finish. A bit of a chewy malt body.

This is absolutely delicious. It's a lightly carbonated fruit punch spiked with wild yeast.

 768 characters

Photo of RAlmeida77
4.31/5  rDev -0.9%
look: 4.25 | smell: 4.5 | taste: 4.25 | feel: 4.25 | overall: 4.25

750 ml shared

L - Two finger head was poured that reduced. Dark copper mahogany color with nice clarity when held up to the light. Small bubbles coming up through the glass. Spotty lacing down the glass as the beer was enjoyed.

A - Lots of fruit....apple, cherry, raspberry....smells sweet.

T - Fruity deliciousness. Sweetness and tartness. Love this.

M - Med/high carb...nice lingering flavor....light bodied

O - Really enjoyed this...my first true adventure into fruit beers was a success. This beer made me want to have alot more like this.

 554 characters

Photo of weonfire
4.32/5  rDev -0.7%
look: 4 | smell: 4.5 | taste: 4.25 | feel: 4.5 | overall: 4.25

A - Light opaque burgundy, creme colored-pencil thin head. small bit of lacing.

S - Delightful! Wow it smells nice. Aged cherries, sour apple and cranberry- the bottle certainly does not lie. In combination: scents of peach and aged pear. Almost like opening a bottle of maraschino cherries.

T - initially: sour hits immediately. first cranberry followed by a mellow aged cherry and lastly sour apple. beautiful tart flavor bites the tongue. tart level 6/10

M - froth is excellent. immediately after- carbonation pops and tingles the tongue.

O - Wonderful sour. Nothing overwhelming in any flavor. blended excellently in the oak - perfect for an after dinner desert beer. My only downfall is I'd most likely only drink one of these.

 736 characters

Serendipity from New Glarus Brewing Company
96 out of 100 based on 242 ratings.