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R&D Sour Fruit (Very Sour Blackberry) - New Glarus Brewing Company

Not Rated.
R&D Sour Fruit (Very Sour Blackberry)R&D Sour Fruit (Very Sour Blackberry)

Educational use only; do not reuse.
BA SCORE
100
world-class

51 Reviews
THE BROS
-
no score

(Send Samples)
Reviews: 51
Hads: 351
rAvg: 4.71
pDev: 6.16%
Wants: 833
Gots: 47 | FT: 6
Brewed by:
New Glarus Brewing Company visit their website
Wisconsin, United States

Style | ABV
American Wild Ale |  5.00% ABV

Availability: Limited (brewed once)

Notes & Commercial Description:
Beer added by: thebigredone on 08-19-2013

This beer is retired; no longer brewed.

Fourth in our series of spontaneous sour ales. Fermented and aged in oak barrels - on yeast lees - with Oregon blackberries. Refermented in this bottle. Open with care - This is a funky wild sour beer!
Beer: Reviews & Ratings
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Reviews: 51 | Hads: 351
Reviews by Stevedore:
Photo of Stevedore
4.71/5  rDev 0%
look: 4.25 | smell: 5 | taste: 4.75 | feel: 4.5 | overall: 4.5

500ml bottle, courtesy of BA THANAT0PSIS who bought it to a killer bottleshare last night, 10/5/2013. Poured into a Zwanze 2013 glass.

Looks pretty much like blackberry puree.. looks thick, purple-black and very jammy-looking. Pours reasonably viscously, no sediment. No lacing, but a fairly decent light purple head. Looks somewhat overly carbonated actually.

Smell is absolute heaven. So much blackberry flavour in here. It smells like Dan filled up a barrel with nothing but blackberries and used a massive immersion blender and just let it ferment. It was ridiculous and I can't think of a ton of beers that smell better than this. This is straight up, acetic, vinegar sourness mixed in with a good bit of sweet fruit aromas. Hell of a nose.

I really enjoyed tasting this beer. It actually starts out as rather mild, accentuating the fruity sweetness of the beer. The blackberries come out very well here- a little acidic at first with some blackberry fruit sweetness. But as the beer warms up, it gets more intense. That blackberry jammy fruitiness gets even more crazy good, but the big change is that it becomes helluva sour on the back-end. Mouthpuckeringly sour. It's more of an acidic sourness than anything else. Very tasty.

The feel on this beer is honestly its achilles' heel if I can call it that. I definitely enjoyed this beer, but this was a medium-full bodied beer that actually felt creamy and thick. Like I said in the appearance, it looks and feels jammy. It does not feel clean, in the sense that all its aspects were crisp and 100% present.. that's what I really enjoy in Brett beers. This one is the complete opposite. Still ridiculously enjoyable, but I think the mouthfeel took quite a bit away from me on this.. I won't hold it against Dan since this is what was advertised!

So, this is an awesome American Wild Ale. So much blackberry fruitiness and acetic sourness. The smell on this beer is ridiculous.. top 3 noses of all time. Mouthfeel is very good but just not what I would prefer on a sour like this. Still, its a fruit sour and you gotta expect some fruit aspects! Don't get me wrong, this is an absolute delight that is worth trying at least once.

Re-review: Brian generously opened a bottle of VSB up on 1/24/2014. Poured into an O'so snifter. Basically, the beer is so much more complex, acidic and dry while retaining the full complement of the blackberry fruit. The mouthfeel is very dry but well-rounded and less jammy and custardy. The sour quotient is somewhere between 7-8 of 10, which is pretty dang sour but this time, meshes really well with the blackberry fruit qualities to create an incredible drinking experience. And the appearance of this beer is still awesome, but the smell still makes it one of the best smelling beers I've ever had. So yeah, I'm bumping this from a 4.4 to whatever it is now, my guess is that it'll be a 4.7 once I submit this review. And I think that's the perfect place for it. A world-class sour that just needed some time to mature (In Dan Carey we trust), and made in Wisconsin to boot. There is no question that this is the best craft beer of any style to ever be produced in Wisconsin. (3,173 characters)

More User Reviews:
Photo of kojevergas
4.3/5  rDev -8.7%
look: 4.25 | smell: 4.25 | taste: 4.25 | feel: 4.25 | overall: 4.5

500ml brown glass bottle with great seemingly hand-written label art and iconic green/gold pry-off pressure cap acquired in a trade with the very gracious Duff27 and served into a Biere de Saint Louis teku. Reviewed live for my birthday. Expectations are sky high given its current 100 rating and the brewery - which I adore. "Brewed November 2013. Bottled August 2013. 12 IBUs. 5% ABV. Batch 5.3 bbl." Reviewed as a sour fruit ale because the label identifies it as such.

Served cold - straight from me fridge - and allowed to warm over the course of consumption. Side-poured with standard vigor as no carbonation issues are expected.

A: No bubble show forms as it's poured.

Pours a two finger pink colour head of okay creaminess and decent thickness. Head is uniquely fizzy, continuing to fizz about the edges a good two minutes after the pour. It's a special effect and is quite remarkable. Consistency is light and airy. Complexion is fairly soft. Head retention is excellent - easily 15+ minutes; I can't wait long enough to find out. No lacing clings to the sides of the glass as the head recedes.

Body colour is a very dark pink/red. Opaque. No yeast particles are visible.

Overall, it's a unique look for a beer and it's incredibly appealing. Really inviting.

Sm: Sugar-covered blackberries, tart sour yeast, fruit tart, controlled wild yeasts/bacteria, berry/currant jam, subtle oak, and juice. There are berry/currant notes here other than blackberry - mainly raspberry. Lactobacillus doesn't dominate; other wild yeasts are present as well. It brings plenty of sourness to the table, but seems to let the tartness take precedence. I'm loving what I'm smelling, and I hope the flavour profile delivers. Sweetness/sourness balance seems perfect.

Any malt backbone is invisible; seamless integration. No hop character or alcohol is detectable. Really craving the first sip of this one. A great, evocative aroma of mild to moderate strength.

T: Oh boy. Almost puckering sourness builds and builds until it crescendos on the climax. Heavy tartness throughout, delivering on the blackberry sour premise. There's plenty of blackberry here with lots of depth of flavour - blackberry jam, blackberry fruit tart, blackberry puree, blackberry flesh, sugar-covered blackberries, etc. There're also other complementary fruit notes: blackcurrant, redcurrant, raspberry, and accompanying esters. The berry sweetness beautifully complements the sourness; there's a special marriage of flavour here that results in a wonderfully well-balanced gestalt flavour profile.

Malts are so seamlessly integrated that they aren't noticeable. I'd guess crystal malts based on the fizziness. Tart fruit rightfully has the spotlight here. No hop profile is noticeable. No alcohol is detectable.

Guiding oak character never feels too woody, and complements the nuanced sourness very well.

The wild yeasts/bacterial notes are great, with plenty of varied sourness. It doesn't have the clean, clinical feel of a lactobacillus-only sour, though lactobacillus does provide a pleasant sourness alongside the other yeasty notes. Great complexity and subtlety across the board. Depth of flavour is exquisite. Really delivers the intensity of flavour as well; it's an aggressive balls-to-the-wall sour. Flavour duration is above average.

Unquestionably delicious.

Mf: Perfect carbonation; fizzy and effervescent. Lip-smackingly luscious, complementing the tart flavours beautifully. Smooth and wet, with a bit of a bite. Coarsens and dries towards the finish, teasing out the next sip. Almost refreshing. Aggressively acidic. Clean. Exquisite presence on the palate. Ideal body and thickness. Marvelous execution, yielding a marriage of texture to taste. This mouthfeel was custom-tailored specifically to this beer's flavour profile and it shows.

Not oily, harsh, astringent, gushed, hot, boozy, or offensive.

Constructively (i.e. nitpickingly), it could be softer.

Dr: A real achievement of a sour, and easily one of the finest American sours I've ever had the pleasure of tasting. Not a sour for newcomers to the style. I'm glad I'm greedily enjoying it alone. It's incredibly drinkable for those drinkers who can handle its assertive commanding presence. Not only would I get this again, I'd clear the shelves of it if possible. I'd recommend anyone reading this get their hands on a bottle immediately.

A unique experience of a beer from New Glarus. Artfully brewed, obscenely well-executed. I'm glad I saved this for my birthday - it really delivered. Huge thanks to Duff27 for the bottle.

Don't pair with anything. It demands to be enjoyed alone.

Drank wonderfully from a teku; I can't imagine a better glass.

I could see this getting better with age, but God, is it drinking damn good now.

Low A (4,815 characters)

Photo of dar482
4.85/5  rDev +3%
look: 4.75 | smell: 4.75 | taste: 5 | feel: 4.75 | overall: 4.75

The aroma punches of huge tart blackberry jam.

The flavor follows with a big tart up front, lemony tart, along with berry seeds. Those characteristics of bitterness, earthiness, and tart. It then moves onto a beautiful jammy deliciousness.

A delicious jammy treat. One of the best wild ales. (293 characters)

Photo of facesnorth
3.99/5  rDev -15.3%
look: 4.5 | smell: 4.75 | taste: 3.5 | feel: 3.75 | overall: 4

Good beer. But not deserving of the hype it gets. I drank it at a small share with 2 other friends along with Atrial Rubicite and some other beers. It was on par with Atrial. Which means it's a very good beer. But it's not worthy of the praise that it commands. Worlds better than Nocturn Chrysalis though, which I found quite lacking. Don't give up the cellar for this expecting it to blow your mind. I don't get much funkiness nor jammyness from it, which is how it's often described. Pleasant, quite tart, nice fruity aroma. Great beer to enjoy in the summer. Certainly won't attempt trading for another, though, unlike some other beers which are truly world class. FWIW, we drank Veruca in the same tasting and that handily stole the show. (743 characters)

Photo of Abbbp
5/5  rDev +6.2%
look: 5 | smell: 5 | taste: 5 | feel: 5 | overall: 5

Hands down the best ever I have ever drank. There are probably people that don't like Sours and prefer this vs. that, but years later it's been an absolute joy to revisit this beauty. An absolute work of art in a bottle.

Edit: I just had this again yesterday. I need more. Absolutely beautiful beer, seek w confidence (318 characters)

Photo of tectactoe
4.87/5  rDev +3.4%
look: 5 | smell: 4.75 | taste: 5 | feel: 4.75 | overall: 4.75

Crimson tinted, indigo colored pour that’s mostly opaque with a pink-ish, white head that wastes no time moving to a thin collar.

Aroma is all blackberry, all day. Sour blackberry fruity & blackberry skins, sharp lemon acidity, & an intense tartness that flows throughout.

Taste is crazy tart; puckering amounts of blackberry, & lemon-like acidity that rips at your cheeks & gum line. Lovely sour finish, lacto notes & blackberry with a touch of lemon...

This is a great American fruited sour, probably one of the best I’ve had. Get your jammies on & get ready for mouth ripping sourness. (598 characters)

Photo of Schlais
4.75/5  rDev +0.8%

Photo of Jared14
5/5  rDev +6.2%

Photo of Callmecoon
4.75/5  rDev +0.8%

Photo of jaminjohnson
5/5  rDev +6.2%

Photo of standardcherry
4.5/5  rDev -4.5%

Photo of bpfrush
4.5/5  rDev -4.5%

Photo of obiwan_k3n00bi
5/5  rDev +6.2%

I've had this beer too many times for one person. It's excellent, but after 1.25 or so years, it isn't what it once was. I will keep it at my original rating, but that almost feels like a lie.

It's great, but it used to be phenomenal. (235 characters)

Photo of sourdog
4.91/5  rDev +4.2%
look: 4.75 | smell: 5 | taste: 5 | feel: 4.75 | overall: 4.75

Photo of Cynic-ale
4.25/5  rDev -9.8%

Photo of rudylaw
5/5  rDev +6.2%

Photo of stereosforgeeks
4.75/5  rDev +0.8%

Photo of BobbysLiquors
5/5  rDev +6.2%

Photo of JasonFromLA
4.75/5  rDev +0.8%

Photo of DerekQXQX
4.25/5  rDev -9.8%

Photo of roostor07
4.25/5  rDev -9.8%

Photo of weonfire
4.75/5  rDev +0.8%

Photo of brians52
5/5  rDev +6.2%
look: 5 | smell: 5 | taste: 5 | feel: 5 | overall: 5

Photo of UWBadgerFan4Life
5/5  rDev +6.2%
look: 5 | smell: 5 | taste: 5 | feel: 5 | overall: 5

This beer gets better every time I drink it. Such a pretty purple color. Smell is where this beer really shines. So much blackberry. Taste is getting even better. Used to be a little too jammy but now the beer is really drying out and getting more sour. Mouth is great. Dry and prickly carb. Overall this beer is better every time i drink it. (348 characters)

Photo of mhenson42
4/5  rDev -15.1%

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R&D Sour Fruit (Very Sour Blackberry) from New Glarus Brewing Company
100 out of 100 based on 51 ratings.