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R&D Very Sour Blackberry - New Glarus Brewing Company

Not Rated.
R&D Very Sour BlackberryR&D Very Sour Blackberry

Displayed for educational use only; do not reuse.
BA SCORE
100
world-class

278 Ratings
THE BROS
-
no score

(send 'em beer!)
Ratings: 278
Reviews: 37
rAvg: 4.74
pDev: 7.38%
Wants: 769
Gots: 43 | FT: 4
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:
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 added by: thebigredone on 08-19-2013)
Beer: Ratings & Reviews
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Ratings: 278 | Reviews: 37 | Display Reviews Only:
Photo of Thorpe429
Thorpe429

Illinois

4.5/5  rDev -5.1%

02-28-2014 14:33:12 | More by Thorpe429
Photo of spycow
spycow

Illinois

4.5/5  rDev -5.1%

11-11-2013 00:25:46 | More by spycow
Photo of westcoastbeerlvr
westcoastbeerlvr

California

4.75/5  rDev +0.2%

05-17-2014 21:00:01 | More by westcoastbeerlvr
Photo of emerge077
emerge077

Illinois

4.53/5  rDev -4.4%
look: 4.5 | smell: 4.5 | taste: 4.5 | feel: 4.75 | overall: 4.5

Served in a small snifter glass, thanks to Dave for the assist (5/14).

Murky saturated reddish purple, with pinkish purple foam that sticks around for a few minutes, audibly fizzling at first.

Aroma is pure blackberries, with an undercurrent of wild bacteria. Acidic berries and barrel funk.

Taste is sharply acidic and sour, jammy at first, bright and fruity. Seedy blackberries are still very present and expressive 9 months from bottling. FInishes bone dry with a lasting pucker. Scrubbing carbonation, the body has a pleasant, slightly vinous quality about it. Some minor funkiness lingers behind the fruit, which lends a nice layer of complexity. Overall this is an extremely well made wild ale, and a sign of wonderful things to come from New Glarus.

Serving type: bottle

10-08-2013 02:33:09 | More by emerge077
Photo of largadeer
largadeer

California

4.5/5  rDev -5.1%

05-17-2014 20:56:19 | More by largadeer
Photo of SocalKicks
SocalKicks

California

4.75/5  rDev +0.2%

04-16-2014 05:57:58 | More by SocalKicks
Photo of zestar
zestar

California

4.25/5  rDev -10.3%

07-12-2014 08:13:50 | More by zestar
Photo of oline73
oline73

Maryland

4.7/5  rDev -0.8%
look: 4.25 | smell: 5 | taste: 4.75 | feel: 4 | overall: 4.75

Poured from the bottle into a goblet.

The beer pours a murky dark purple color with a layer of off white/pink head. The smell is full of fruit with a nice balance between tart and sweet. The tartness really pops in the taste with just enough sweetness to balance it out a bit. This is a fantastic fruit sour and I'd love to have more in the future.

Serving type: bottle

11-12-2013 02:22:31 | More by oline73
Photo of XmnwildX12
XmnwildX12

Minnesota

5/5  rDev +5.5%

12-15-2013 00:03:14 | More by XmnwildX12
Photo of mendvicdog
mendvicdog

Maryland

4.75/5  rDev +0.2%

11-15-2013 19:10:17 | More by mendvicdog
Photo of beernads
beernads

Florida

4.75/5  rDev +0.2%

10-18-2013 10:57:31 | More by beernads
Photo of kojevergas
kojevergas

Texas

4.3/5  rDev -9.3%
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

Serving type: bottle

11-05-2013 04:20:13 | More by kojevergas
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imperialking

Illinois

4.75/5  rDev +0.2%

09-05-2013 16:28:12 | More by imperialking
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MarkyMOD

Colorado

4.5/5  rDev -5.1%

10-17-2013 00:09:23 | More by MarkyMOD
Photo of yourefragile
yourefragile

District of Columbia

4.5/5  rDev -5.1%

11-12-2013 00:50:59 | More by yourefragile
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duceswild

Maryland

4.5/5  rDev -5.1%

11-12-2013 05:28:31 | More by duceswild
Photo of Gonzoillini
Gonzoillini

Illinois

4.75/5  rDev +0.2%

11-10-2013 00:04:26 | More by Gonzoillini
Photo of Zaphog
Zaphog

Michigan

4.5/5  rDev -5.1%

04-27-2014 15:17:31 | More by Zaphog
Photo of dirtylou
dirtylou

Washington

4.73/5  rDev -0.2%
look: 4.25 | smell: 4.75 | taste: 4.75 | feel: 4.75 | overall: 4.75

500ml bottle, split

I hit this bottle release after the GTMW 2013 - this serving was generously shared with me on a recent trip to Madison. Served in Cantillon stemware - dark raspberry body. At first whiff, it's clear this is going to be pretty epic.

Very sour, but in an extraordinarily refined way that can only be derived from avoiding all potential shortcuts. Layers of jammy blackberry, wild yeast profiles that bring immediate comparisons to favorites from the Seine River Valley. Fizzy carbonation, puckering tartness and fantastically delicious.

Serving type: bottle

12-01-2013 19:26:54 | More by dirtylou
Photo of drummermattie02
drummermattie02

Texas

4/5  rDev -15.6%

01-19-2014 22:47:39 | More by drummermattie02
Photo of BeerFMAndy
BeerFMAndy

Wisconsin

4.65/5  rDev -1.9%
look: 5 | smell: 4.75 | taste: 4.5 | feel: 4.75 | overall: 4.75

500 ml bottle poured into a Bruery tulip.
5% ABV, 12 IBUs, Brewed Nov. 2010, Bottled Aug. 2013, Batch 5.3 bbls, 12°P

Thanks to Chris (Duff27) for reaching out to me on this IP trade at Central Waters!

A - Gunsmoke wafts from the bottle following a loud hiss. Very Sour Blackberry, or VSB as the geeks shorten it to, pours dark Merlot red with a billowing bright pink crown of foam that, when it's acidity is taken into consideration, lingers for quite a while.

S - Straight acidic tartness with hints of funk cuts through the large fruity aroma, ripe with freshly crushed blackberries, which leaves the beer with a somewhat linear nose but a phenomenal one at that.

T - Extremely tart acidity slaps the tongue around immediately before a bit of fresh blackberry syrup sweetness cuts through with a subdued balance; like the aroma, Very Sour Blackberry is very good but really linear.

M - The hiss from the crack of the bottle was a good indicator that this beer would be quite carbonated and sure enough, it is! In fact, it's effervescent carbonation is just a little high for my liking but it's sparkling feel nicely compliments the beer's extremely tart, highly acidic nature.

O - Another great sour from Wisconsin, it's fantastic to see breweries like New Glarus getting on board with these booming styles, though New Glarus has been doing limited releases of this caliber for some time. Very Sour Blackberry pours like a red wine with carbonation, it's aroma and flavor, fairly one dimensional on acidic tartness cut with fresh blackberries but, it's a damn good beer. I'm cautious to call this beer sour, however. To me, the acidity in this beer is far more tart, extremely tart, than it is sour but everything comes together very nicely for a delicious, wild fruit beer!

Serving type: bottle

01-26-2014 20:15:06 | More by BeerFMAndy
Photo of jrallen34
jrallen34

Illinois

4.5/5  rDev -5.1%

09-15-2013 18:47:56 | More by jrallen34
Photo of Alieniloquium
Alieniloquium

Florida

4.36/5  rDev -8%
look: 5 | smell: 4.5 | taste: 4.25 | feel: 4 | overall: 4.5

500 mL bottle poured into a snifter.

Appearance - Dark hazy reddish purple. Nice pink head. Pretty.

Smell - Tons of blackberry. Acidic. A little bit of funky yeast to it. Some oak.

Taste - Bright and grainy right up front. Sweet blackberry. Immediately sour. Tart and funky. Oak. Some lemony flavors.

Mouthfeel - Strong sourness. Grainy. Medium body.

Overall - Excellent. The fruit flavor that New Glarus is famous for but it has the complexity of a great sour beer.

Serving type: bottle

01-28-2014 03:43:05 | More by Alieniloquium
Photo of iL0VEbeer
iL0VEbeer

New Jersey

4.75/5  rDev +0.2%

10-09-2013 15:48:20 | More by iL0VEbeer
Photo of chippo33
chippo33

Vermont

4.75/5  rDev +0.2%

10-02-2013 04:58:58 | More by chippo33
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R&D Very Sour Blackberry from New Glarus Brewing Company
100 out of 100 based on 278 ratings.