Tartare - Bear Republic Brewing Co.

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Tartare
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BA SCORE
94
outstanding

94 Reviews
THE BROS
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Reviews: 94
Hads: 520
rAvg: 4.29
pDev: 3.96%
Wants: 176
Gots: 17 | FT: 0
Brewed by:
Bear Republic Brewing Co. visit their website
California, United States

Style | ABV
Berliner Weissbier |  4.00% ABV

Availability: Rotating

Notes & Commercial Description:
Beer added by: ChrisPro on 11-19-2011

One of the world's classic sour beer styles, Tartare is Bear Republic's interpretation of Berliner Weisse, the tart, low-alcohol beer style dubbed as "The Champagne of the North."

Bronze medal at the 2011 Festival of Wood and Barrel Aged Beer in the Wild Beer/Acidic Category
Winner at 2013 Good Food Awards, Adventurous, Barreled, Big, Bawdy, & Belgian Beer Category
Beer: Reviews & Ratings
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Reviews: 94 | Hads: 520
Photo of RblWthACoz
4.45/5  rDev +3.7%
look: 4.5 | smell: 4.5 | taste: 4.5 | feel: 4 | overall: 4.5

What fortune. A rainy day says that I can't jump out of a plane, yet I am still able to beer it up and I stumble upon this beer. It's been a long time since I've had a Berliner-Weiss.

This is on the level. Tart and mildly lactic (and thankfully not too much so). Has that sticky kind of thick feel to it that fits to what I've experienced of the style in the past. If you've never had this type of beer before, you may not be prepared for it. Though if you've had legitimate lambics and gueuzes, you'll probably be okay. Regardless. This is an intense beer that does not cut corners. A pleasure to be able to try this one. (623 characters)

Photo of nataku00
4.47/5  rDev +4.2%
look: 4 | smell: 4.5 | taste: 4.5 | feel: 4.5 | overall: 4.5

On tap poured into a snifter. Beer poured a light straw yellow color with a slight haze. Minimal head with minor lacing, but a few bubbles of carbonation here and there.

Nose is funky, earthy, with sour fruit, lemon and peach skins.

Taste showcases the fruity notes, sour lemon, lighter stone fruits, earthy, funky, and woody. Hint of mineral flavor at the back of the tongue. Drying and sour on the tongue.

Light body with some decent zesty carbonation makes this very refreshing. What a surprisingly excellent sour beer from Bear Republic. (547 characters)

Photo of yourefragile
4.5/5  rDev +4.9%
look: 4.5 | smell: 4.5 | taste: 4.5 | feel: 4.5 | overall: 4.5

On draft at City Beer Store, from notes.

Pours a bright hazy straw golden with a a few fingers of white, creamy head. Fades a to collar with spots of lacing. Grainy, bready nose blends with lacto sourness and mild citrus. Light earth and floral notes in the finish. Light, effervescent refreshing body with prickly carbonation. Flavor is dominated by a sour and tart lemon acidity with a strong sourdough bread presence mid palate. Lemon sourness builds through the finish with light floral notes occasionally emerging. Oak dries out the surprisingly clean finish. Damn Bear Republic, this was a surprise. (606 characters)

Photo of Heavenisbeer
4.82/5  rDev +12.4%
look: 4.5 | smell: 5 | taste: 5 | feel: 4.5 | overall: 4.5

On tap at Church Key in SF.

A: Has the look of a hazy lemonade. No head.

S: Plastic barnyard lemonade funk. I have never confronted a nose like this. Damn.

T: Sour as hell, and wonderful. Like a great gueuze. Citrus, funk, and vinegar. Yum.

M: Tart and extremely dry. Pucker up!

I can't believe I have never had this style before, and I love sours. Such a great beer and style; I hope more American breweries start pumping out berliner weissebiers. (453 characters)

Photo of corby112
4.1/5  rDev -4.4%
look: 3.5 | smell: 3.5 | taste: 4.5 | feel: 4.5 | overall: 4

Draft at Toronado San Diego.

Pours a cloudy, dark golden yellow color with a half fnger off white head that quickly fades into a lasting ring. Spotty lacing left behind.

Funky, slightly earthy aroma with some citrus acidity,  light fruit and bready yeast.  

Tart, puckering mouthfeel with a decent amount of sour acidity that lingers over the sweet citrus and bready yeast into a lingering acetic, vinegary finish.  Kind of like a sour kvass with lots of bread, citrus acidity and funk. (494 characters)

Photo of Kegatron
4.15/5  rDev -3.3%
look: 3.5 | smell: 3.5 | taste: 4.5 | feel: 4 | overall: 4.5

64 oz growler into several glasses. Big thanks go to Stakem for generously sharing this with the wife and me during a recent tasting.

Pours a hazed pale gold, topped with roughly a half finger of bright-white head. This mostly retains with a foamy ring around the edges of the glass, leaving back a frothy cascade of lace down the sides. The aroma smells of lemon, oak, acidity, and some light notes of vanilla and grainy sweetness along the back. Dry chardonnay character hangs on the edges of this, adding a bit of alcohol warmth to this.

The taste is lemon tartness with an acidic edge to it that then gets more lactic feeling across the back. The dryness of the barrel comes in off the edges and creeps into the finish of this. The wheat just sits in the background but nearly gets overrun by the tart/sourness here. The mouthfeel is lighter bodied and mellow feeling on the tongue but things do get a bit more sprightly feeling throughout the rest of the body.

Well this was certainly interesting. It’s hard to take this one as a straight up Berliner Weiss experience, as the barrel and funkiness definitely took this to an another place. Still, I’m glad to say that I’ve tried it. It’s a wood-aged Berliner Weiss for CRYING OUT LOUD! (1,253 characters)

Photo of Slatetank
3.35/5  rDev -21.9%
look: 3.5 | smell: 3.5 | taste: 3.5 | feel: 3 | overall: 3

Thanks to Stakem for sharing this growler, enjoyed from a tumbler chilled.

The color is dull golden with a light haze and quick collapsing white cap with ultra fine bead. Lots of tiny visible carbonation bubbles stream. The smell is a good deal of sour aroma with funky nose and smell like a fresh squeezed lemon with tart odor and slightly vinegary scent. Mouthfeel is super tart and acidic with bitter edge like bile going back down ...it is a sour as stomach acid but has a sweet juicy puckering dry back end.

The taste is like tart lemon juice with the rind ground up and thrown in for extra astringency w/out any sweet flavors to balance -kind of funky with subtle carbonation level and very dry bitter taste with tannic presence and not really any wheat I can gather. Simply sour and acidic with citrus bite and mildly acetic taste with earthy jolt of sour and light nutty finish of wood. Overall not the most drinkable of the style and just sour taste after sour flavor with the bile like bite which I found to be just a bit harsh on the palate. I could not see having more than one which is not what I like from a Berliner. (1,137 characters)

Photo of womencantsail
4.47/5  rDev +4.2%
look: 4 | smell: 4.5 | taste: 4.5 | feel: 4.5 | overall: 4.5

Growler shared by Richard. Thanks!

The pour is a pale straw hue with a short lived white head. An excellent tartness to the aroma. Very sharp lactic acidity to go along with plenty of wheat. A little bit of lemon peel and maybe some popcorn. The flavor is similarly enjoyable. Great lemon peel and lemon juice tartness with an undertone of sweetness from the wheat. Light bodied with medium carbonation. Very well done beer. (425 characters)

Photo of barleywinefiend
4.35/5  rDev +1.4%
look: 4 | smell: 4 | taste: 4.5 | feel: 4.5 | overall: 4.5

A: Poured a straw yellow color with good carbonation presenting a nice white cap, some lacing and bubbles

S: A funky ass lemon drop, some wheat and light booze

T: Immediate blast of lemons, a bit of brett funk, lacto forward, more lemon like lemon drop with some wheat, light booze

M: Light body but highly carbonated with a bit of Earthiness, tartness, light body, acidic

O: Pretty outstanding! (400 characters)

Photo of Rutager
4.43/5  rDev +3.3%
look: 4.5 | smell: 4 | taste: 4.5 | feel: 5 | overall: 4.5

On tap at Bottleworks today.

Appearance. Pours a very light and hazy straw with a thin bubbly white head that doesn't stick around.

Smell. Nice light brett funk, tart apples and lemons with a hint of light grains.

Taste. Nice and tart with a lemon-like sourness. A little bit of lemon and sour apples, with a light funkiness.

Mouthfeel. Light body with medium-strong carbonation. Just perfect.

Overall. Blown away by this one. Nice and sour, unlike some berliner weisse's I've had before. Even at $8 for 10oz, I had to have a second glass. Wishing I had bought a growler!! (577 characters)

Photo of largadeer
4.35/5  rDev +1.4%
look: 4 | smell: 4 | taste: 4.5 | feel: 4.5 | overall: 4.5

Wow, a nice sour from Bear Republic for a change. On tap at Toronado. Hazy straw hued body with a thin head that doesn't provide much stickage. Great lacto and grain aroma, a bit sourdough-like. Little funkiness, too. Bright, sharp, acidic palate, pretty citrusy with a pleasant lacto profile that's extremely refreshing. Touch of pineapple, grain, not much oak or barrel to speak of. Brief, thirst quenching finish. Drank a few of these and could have had more, low ABV with a ton of flavor. Drank this side by side with Cable Car 2010 and found this better. (559 characters)

Photo of musicman575
3.99/5  rDev -7%
look: 3 | smell: 4 | taste: 4 | feel: 4.5 | overall: 4

Now this is a sour beer, true to it's style.

Hazy lemon with no head.

Smells of brett, cherry, green apple, and a littlle banana.

Beneath the zing lies the brett flavor and some earthy funk. Very good for an american version of this style. Better than DFH's berliner weisse.

finishes bright and dry with lingering tart. (323 characters)

Photo of HopHead84
4.32/5  rDev +0.7%
look: 4 | smell: 4.5 | taste: 4.5 | feel: 3 | overall: 4.5

12/19/2011

On tap at Stone.

A: Hazed yellow with a fast fading bubbly white head.

S: Tart lemon with notes of melon and a pronounced lactic sourness. Flowery characteristics accompany passion fruit and a restrained cheesiness. Earth is evident and I get a touch of leather.

T: Tart and lactic up front with an upper moderate sourness. I detect light cheese notes, as well as earth and grain. Lemon is pronounced, accompanying a lower moderate citric acidity and a touch of vinegar.

M: Light in body with low carbonation. The carbonation is my only complaint with this beer as it's a little too low. The acidity makes up for it a bit, but I'd love high carbonation on this.

Overall: A very good Berliner Weiss. Don't pass this up if you enjoy the style. (758 characters)

Photo of scottfrie
4.47/5  rDev +4.2%
look: 4 | smell: 4.5 | taste: 4.5 | feel: 4.5 | overall: 4.5

EDIT: On-tap at the brewery, June 2013. No growlers!
Just as sour as I remember but still only 4%. Tons of acid, slight golden fruit, very dry, tight carbonation, super clean, super scrubbing carb, very refreshing, wheat pokes through, a bit of chalk, a bit of lemon. Definitely refreshing. Faint peach and other stone fruit. Fortunately or unfortunately I do have to say this is incredible. Super drinkable. Score adjusted.

December 2011. Thanks for sharing, Mike.

A: Pours a lightly cloudy pale lemon color with a short lived white head that faded into a faint collar.
S: Funky and tart notes of acidic citrus, lemon and sweat. Powerful.
T: Sweet fruits come through in the beginning. I even get a bit of cantaloupe. Then the sour comes with a blast of acidic and tart lemon zest and sour patch kids. The tartness is clean but this would be very hard to drink a lot of.
M: Fizzy frothy carbonation, medium body, very mouthwatering and acidic mouthfeel.
O: Very tart but great flavor. Super lemon flavor and clean. Thanks again for bringing the growler Mike! (1,067 characters)

Photo of wagenvolks
4.72/5  rDev +10%
look: 4 | smell: 4.5 | taste: 5 | feel: 5 | overall: 4.5

7 oz pour at City Beer Store in San Francisco, CA.

Attractive in the glass, Tartare sits with a bright goldenrod body that fades to a hazy pale yellow at the edges. Up top, a well-retained cap of off-white foam holds court. Aroma is incredibly balanced for the style, with a pungent burst of sour citrus backed by bread crust and a tinge of earthy hops.

I've gotta hand it to Bear Republic...they usually win me over with their hoppy beers (e.g., Racer X, Mach 10), but this beer takes the cake. Tartness hits the tongue and refuses to let go, but at the same time it doesn't overwhelm the palate with sour acidity. Lemon, sourdough, and vinous funk are equally in effect. Mouthfeel is ultimately crisp and well-carbonated. The 4% is perhaps the crowned jewel of this beer...so flavorful, yet entirely sessionable all the while. Highly recommended. (851 characters)

Photo of Halcyondays
4.32/5  rDev +0.7%
look: 3.5 | smell: 4 | taste: 4.5 | feel: 4.5 | overall: 4.5

On-tap at Beachwood I,

A: Pours a hazy yellow with a medium white head. Solid head retention for the style, but doesn't last all the way through the glass.

S: Lots of acid and funk, bit of acetic, smells a bit like a The Bruery sour intially. Fragrant and floral.

T: Lemons and acid. Full-flavoured with a strong citrus component. Very tasty.

M: Medium-high acidity, it's got it, but not to the degree of those around me that had it stated IMO. Light-bodied, refreshing for sure.

O: A really good and impressive Berliner Weisse. Maybe not completely to style, but this was one good beer. (592 characters)

Photo of DoubleJ
4.42/5  rDev +3%
look: 4 | smell: 4.5 | taste: 4.5 | feel: 4 | overall: 4.5

Kyle is one of the main guys behind the bar at Beachwood BBQ, and when I saw him giggling as he sampled a newly tapped keg of Tartare, I knew this had to be good. On to the beer:

Highlight yellow in color. It almost looks like it's glowing. The nose is simple, yet the intensity and balance of the acidity and tart fruits are excellent. You can say the same for the taste as well; simple and surprisingly delicious. Tart tart tart tart tart. You certainly feel your saliva glands kicking in as the acidity washes over the palate.

Bear Republic is a very good brewery, though it is not known for sour ales, so it was a great surprise to everybody that this came out of Headlesburg. This is a beer that should turn some heads. (727 characters)

Photo of PerHops
4.85/5  rDev +13.1%
look: 4.5 | smell: 4.5 | taste: 5 | feel: 5 | overall: 5

Awesome beer! I had this on draft today at the pub and it blew me away. Unfortunately so did a couple of their other beers and I opted for a different growler. I regretted not getting this one the minute I left. I can only hope I will be able to try it again. (259 characters)

Photo of ChrisPro
4.08/5  rDev -4.9%
look: 4 | smell: 3.5 | taste: 4.5 | feel: 4 | overall: 4

Draft at FoBaB 2011.

A - Cloudy golden with a foamy white head that dissipates quickly.

S - Nice funk. Some hay, a little earthy spice and some good lemon zest.

T - A bit grassy, then nice lemon tartness. Incredibly drinkable. A bit more tart than other berliners, but I really liked it.

M - a bit fuller than I expected, and felt like the ABV might be a bit high for the style, but it had mild carbonation that worked well.

O - Super drinkable and nice and complex. Lots going on with this beer and I went back for a couple servings. Well made berliner that I would drink often. (594 characters)

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Tartare from Bear Republic Brewing Co.
94 out of 100 based on 94 ratings.