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The Dissident - Deschutes Brewery

Not Rated.
The DissidentThe Dissident

Educational use only; do not reuse.

455 Reviews

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Reviews: 455
Hads: 1,168
Avg: 4.16
pDev: 17.31%
Wants: 969
Gots: 584 | FT: 55
Brewed by:
Deschutes Brewery visit their website
Oregon, United States

Style | ABV
Flanders Oud Bruin |  11.40% ABV

Availability: Rotating

Notes & Commercial Description:
Beer added by: MisterClean on 08-19-2008

Flanders style sour brown brewed with dark candi sugar and Oregon Montmorency cherries, aged in Pinot Noir barrels.

30 IBU

First release (9.0% ABV) - August 2008
Second release (10.5% ABV) - November 2010 (~118bbl)
Third release (11.4% ABV) - October 2012
Fourth release (10.7% ABV) - December 2014
View: Beers (158) | Events
Beer: Reviews & Ratings
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Reviews: 455 | Hads: 1,168
Photo of JasonLovesBeer
4.53/5  rDev +8.9%
look: 4 | smell: 4.75 | taste: 4.5 | feel: 4.5 | overall: 4.5

From a 650mL bomber. This is the 2012 run of Dissident, drank July 24, written from my notes.

Nose: As soon as the seal was broken the scent of sour cherries hit my nostrils. Very tart, sharp aroma. It's a familiar smell from other sour cherry ales, but Dissident is stronger, sharper than anything else I've had. Lots of cherry here, but not overly sweet - the funkiness is very much there. Some oak, vinegar as well.

Taste: Wow, reminds me of Driftwood's Belle Royale but on steroids. That great cherry sourness hits pretty solidly right away, moderately sweet. Very dry finish and it has a sharpness that I'd liken to extra old cheddar - this last trait is what's unique about Dissident for me. It actually wasn't until I had drank about 200mL that I noticed the ABV - I had assumed it was similar to other sour cherry ales I've had but it was significantly higher at 11.4%. This surely has a lot to do with that sharpness I found.

Overall: Really good if not a little overly acidic for me. I find it so powerful that it has to be a special occasion beer - it lacks the accessibility of some of the less potent sour cherry ales, but accessible is not something it's going for.

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Photo of Immortale25
4.51/5  rDev +8.4%
look: 4 | smell: 4.25 | taste: 4.75 | feel: 4.5 | overall: 4.5

Poured into a Saint Somewhere wine-style glass. Label says Best After 8/20/13

A- Pours a semi-murky reddish light brown color with a 1/8 inch light tan head that's short-lived and soon dissipates to a thin ring around the edge of the glass and minimal surface foam. Non-resilient lacing leaves a thin ring behind on the glass.

S- Aroma is bursting with lactic acid bringing notes of tart cherry, sour apple and wine-like alcohol fumes.

T- The oak comes through wonderfully in this beer as it meshes with the fruit and tartness to create a balanced and drinkable combination. Not incredibly sour and the alcohol is masterfully hidden. I almost wish there was just a tad more flavor but this pretty much hits the spot. Semi-astringent oak aftertaste.

M- Slight pucker but quite quenching. Low carbonation and a medium body.

O- This is one knockout of a sour but it's so subtle in its execution. A slow sipper but every one is a delight.

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Photo of tut2528
3.6/5  rDev -13.5%
look: 4.5 | smell: 4.5 | taste: 3 | feel: 3.5 | overall: 3.5

A: beautiful blood red in color, huge carbonation… creating a solid fingers worth of khaki colored head formation that dissipates quickly, but leaves a slight film.

S: huge cherry sourness right up front assaulting the nostrils. Picking up on a enormous raspberry character as well. Big vinous characters, huge French oak barrels are amazing as well… some slight touches of barnyard funk, hay and even a slight tinge of manure.

T: wow… not really what the smell had to offer. I was expecting more acidity and fruit forward beer due to the aromas, but this is not what getting. I pick up on huge French oakiness that dominates the palate. An enormous amount of sugary syrup. Cherries are definitely evident but they fall way behind the big oak. There is a big dryness here, with characters of hay and barnyard funk but the balance is off.

M: heavy side of a medium bodied brew (not quite full bodied for the style). The finish is an immense sugary sweet maple with an enormous dry oaky wine finish.

O: awesome appearance and awesome aroma. But it immensely lacks in balance, taste and mouthfeel. Very happy to split this bottle with one other person.

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Photo of brydeen
4.17/5  rDev +0.2%
look: 3.5 | smell: 4 | taste: 4.25 | feel: 4.5 | overall: 4.25

Reviewed as part of Blind BIF round 8

A: Pours a murky, cloudy copper color. Very thin off-white head, holding only onto the edge of the glass.

S: An interesting sweet aroma with the subtlest underlying tart bite. A little cherry perhaps. A touch of honey possibly too.

T: Lightly acidic, but more sweet than anything. Cherries definitely on my mind, but I could be way off. I don't even think I know what style this is. It looks like a Barleywine, but it doesn't taste like one.

M: Medium bodied, somewhat creamy, with just the perfect amount of carbonation. Absolutely no alcohol detectable, which is impressive at 11.4.

O: This is a pretty tasty brew, and getting better as it warms. Sweet, but not overdone. Much lighter tasting than the alcohol would lead you to believe. Since I'm completely dumfounded here, I'll guess its so sort of American Barleywine, but I don't feel confident about it.

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Photo of SanFranJake
4.38/5  rDev +5.3%
look: 4.5 | smell: 4.5 | taste: 4.25 | feel: 4.25 | overall: 4.5

In the interest of full disclosure, I was pretty bombed when I cracked this bomber...solo.
I'm not a huge sour-style fan but I grabbed two of these upon release and tossed them away...until last night.
Smelled like bottled Cherry Clan's...if you remember what those are.
Poured a nice golden hue into a tulip glass...minimal head.
Each sip got better and better...but it could also be my buzz that got better and better (its 11+%) and was super enjoyable.
As I said, I'm not big into this style but if this was the benchmark, I'd be into it all day.
A very enjoyable beer, even if its a month before its "best after" date.

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Photo of pmarlowe
3.72/5  rDev -10.6%
look: 3.75 | smell: 4.25 | taste: 3.5 | feel: 3.75 | overall: 3.5

2012 vintage. Tulip glass.

A: Pours a dark, clear copper-like color with a half finger of foamy, light tan head which fizzles out pretty quickly to a ring. So-so retention and no lacing.

S: Bright cherries meld nicely with lactic sourness, fruity Jolly Ranchers, a little acetic acid, and mild toasted oak.

T: Oak and chocolate, a little vanilla, and cherry Jolly Rancher way underneath, with a short/abrupt finish. Vague tartness and off dry and tannic on the finish. Kind of a mess: it's a shame that the fruit is hidden under all the barrel flavor.

M: Medium body, a little tannic/drying, with light effervescent carbonation. No alcohol is evident.

O: Not bad, but nothing to recommend this.

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Photo of ThePorterSorter
4.35/5  rDev +4.6%
look: 4.25 | smell: 4.25 | taste: 4.5 | feel: 4.25 | overall: 4.25

The beer pours a cloudy, syrupy looking auburn with no head or carbonation. The nose is a tad tart, sweet with notes of raisin and candi sugar, masked booze, and no bitterness. The taste is definitely modestly tart, sweet, a touch of cherry and raisin in the finish, no bitterness. The mouthfeel is sweet upfront, slightly tart, no bitterness, and only very slightly dry finish. This beer is excellent and almost like a rodenbach on steroids...

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Photo of dbossman
4.25/5  rDev +2.2%
look: 3.75 | smell: 4.25 | taste: 4.25 | feel: 4.5 | overall: 4.25

A: Brown bourbon looking hue; virtually no head or lacing but still beautiful and pretty on par for the style

S: Tart and sour; subtle vinous and cider vinegar notes: lots of tart fruits

T: Oh man, this is tart and balanced: malty and fruity and oaky and tart and man that's good

F: Medium body; kind of sticky and thick

O: This is a darn good boozy, oaky, and tart beer

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Photo of xnicknj
4.21/5  rDev +1.2%
look: 4 | smell: 4.25 | taste: 4.25 | feel: 4 | overall: 4.25

22oz bottle poured into tulip - 2010 bottle

Pours a hazed dark cherry color with some brownish tones. Crop of beige head bubbles up, fading into a collar of film with some spotty lacing.

Scents of lactic sourness with dark cherry, red wine and warming oak. Smooth alcohol warmth, funky yeast and currants.

Nice bite of sour right up front (you can feel it in your gums), featuring black cherry, overripe red grape and a touch of raisin. Dark malted tartness continues with oak, red wine, leather and soft dark fruit sweetness. Finishes warm and sour with lingering yeasty notes.

Medium body, decent carbonation, bubbly and dry on the tongue. A top tier Flanders Oud Bruin with a decent balance between the higher abv and fairly aggressive dark sourness.

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Photo of Knapp85
4.09/5  rDev -1.7%
look: 4 | smell: 4.25 | taste: 4 | feel: 4.25 | overall: 4

This poured out as a brownish red color with a white head on top. The soapy looking head fades and leaves a ring of foam around the edge. The smell of the beer is tart on the nose some really nice cherry aromas. The taste of the beer is tart and sour. There is some sweetness in tere as well that is a little on the syrupy side. The mouthfeel of the beer is nicely carbonated with a medium body to it. Overall this beer is pretty good. I feel it could be a little more sour. It's still a pretty good brew.

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Photo of smakawhat
3.72/5  rDev -10.6%
look: 3.75 | smell: 4.25 | taste: 3.5 | feel: 3.75 | overall: 3.5

Poured from the bottle at Smoke & Barrel for the DC bottle share. Bottle brought by ? From notes. Vintage 2012 I assume.

Good sample pour brings a falling tan soapy looking head, collapsing on to a faint orange bronze body, seems quite light for a bruin but otherwise fine.

Nose has a mild sense of acid with a nice good malt sweetness. Some nice citrus orange sensing fruit peeks out a bit mixing with a sense of sour orange. Very unique and different, quite pleasant actually.

Palate though just seems odd. A good moderate sense of tartness and bringing the fruit orange on the nose, but a very fizzy strange almost medicinal finish. Finish doesn't really compliment much of the light sweet malt and good balanced acid on the palate. Mouthfeel seems perfectly acceptable but a bit with higher than expected carbonation feel, but luckily doesn't detract from the palate.

There's some interesting things going on here, but first sip was a bit of a strange shock and quite odd. It does have some good qualities to it and a future visit might be in the cards, but by no means my favorite bruin at all. Strange aftertaste.

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Photo of TheSixthRing
4.27/5  rDev +2.6%
look: 4 | smell: 4.5 | taste: 4.25 | feel: 4 | overall: 4.25

Beer Review # 500! Best After date of 8/20/13

Appearance - Pours a hazy, somewhat dull copper with a white half finger head that displays a slight orangish hue. Fair retention, leaves behind a thick film of microbubbles on the surface, which clump ever so more around the edges. Lacing is spotty with little stick.

Smell - Sour cherries hit right off the bat. Green banana. Bubblegum. Yeast funkiness. Faint touches of oak.

Taste - Wow that's sour! Near overpowering cherry sourness upfront. Touches of funk and green banana come through once the sourness dissipates. Under-ripened plum. Sourness lessens as the beer warms, though it's still the driving force behind the brew. Lesser hints of bubblegum on the tongue than on the nose, but it definitely comes through near the end. Speaking of which, finishes sour for sure, but with a faint citrus zest bitterness.

Mouthfeel - Medium-bodied, with moderate carbonation. Smoothly drinkable, despite the sourness. Crisp. Bone dry finish.

Overall - Well, I hope you like cherries. I do. Love 'em. This beer is right up my alley... sort of. It's very, very sour, especially at first. Okay, so I opened it 5 months before the recommended date, but that's on me. I wanted this beer to be my 500th review, and I wasn't gonna wait that long to do another beer review, damn it! Or... maybe it's on the brewery? Hey guys, maybe don't release your beer until the 'Best After' date has passed, you bastards! No, I'm kidding! I still love you Deschutes, but seriously. Okay, I'm rambling.

Obviously I'm in a festive mood. Happy 500, me!

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Photo of Philousa
4.21/5  rDev +1.2%
look: 4.25 | smell: 4.5 | taste: 4.25 | feel: 3.25 | overall: 4.25

Pours a ruddy brown, clear, with a good amount of billowy white head that dissipates almost instantly. A good sign of the high ABV. I can swirl up a millimeter or so of head, but it settles to a small ring quickly. Definite cherry and some oak aroma, as advertised, with a strong sour vinegar, which I'm guessing is what's hiding the high ABV. Digging a little deeper, we get leather, strawberries, some raspberry, and a little milk chocolate. Oak dominates the palate with some dark chocolate and slight vanilla. Sourness comes through, but its pretty slight. I also get all the fruit mentioned earlier in the nose. There is also a bitterness that mixes with the sourness that suggests turned fruit. Kinda weird in the finish, but as it warms this strangeness fades away. The feel is somewhat thin and prickly with carbonation, despite the appearance, finish is dry.

This is definitely a nice treat, and at 11% it should be treated as such. It's not as sour as the aroma would suggest, which makes me want to age the second bottle for a couple years.

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Photo of rudzud
4.05/5  rDev -2.6%
look: 4 | smell: 4 | taste: 4 | feel: 4.5 | overall: 4

Enjoyed this at a little bottle share at Tree House Brewery. Reviewed from notes. This is a 2010 vintage.

A - Poured into a Tree House glass a clear light mahogany with a thin, thin head that fades to leave light wisps.

S - Very nice sour cherry notes along with a very, very light barnyard funk. Quite mellow with age.

T - Taste is solid, like the nose, with sour cherries and funk. That being said, its not nearly as sour as I was expecting it to be (which is a shame as it smelled like it was going to be puckering).

M - Mouthfeel is spot on, just spot on. The age has knocked down some of the carbonation resulting in a brighter, crisp, tart brew. Good.

O - Overall, this was a tasty beer from Deschutes. Wish it was more sour but it was still worth checking out.

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Photo of beerandcycling88
4.12/5  rDev -1%
look: 3.5 | smell: 4.5 | taste: 4 | feel: 3.75 | overall: 4.25

From notes.
Poured from a bomber into a snifter.

A Pours a redish copper topped off with a white head.

S Lots of sour cherry and some funky barnyard brett.

T Some sour cherry with more funk however the taste wasn't as sour as the nose would lead you to believe.

M Lots of carbonation with a full body.

Overall while I thought that this was a pretty good beer, to me it seemed like a lesser version of Supplication by RR. Still good just not great.

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Photo of kevanb
3.58/5  rDev -13.9%
look: 4 | smell: 3.5 | taste: 3.5 | feel: 4 | overall: 3.5

22oz bottle, 2012 Reserve poured into a Deschutes snifter.

The beer pours a great dark cherry color, touches of burgundy and garnet when struck by the light, a fizzy, bone colored head appears briefly but vanishes instantly with no lacing left behind. The aroma is heavy on sour cherry, light oak with some strong vinegar presence, a bit of strawberry is noticeable as well. The aroma is very intense, from the moment the bottle is cracked open, the immediate area is blasted by the sour cherry fragrance. The flavors are very similar, lots of cherry, leaning towards dried cherry rather than fresh cherry, smooth sweet oak with a touch of red grape. There is some strong vinegar and acidity on the tongue, at times a bit overdone and off-putting but as the beer warms and opens up these effects tone down and the beer becomes a bit more smooth and rounded. The body is very lively, zesty and prickly on the tongue, very fizzy with high carbonation with a fairly abrasive finish.

Verdict: A decent Flander’s Red from Deschutes, lacking in complexity and subtlety as the harsh sour and vinegar qualities really dominate this beer at times. I’m left wishing the cherry flavors came across as fresh fruit rather than dried as they never really pop. My one praise is that you would never know it’s 11.4% as the alcohol is artfully hidden.

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Photo of popery
4/5  rDev -3.8%
look: 3.75 | smell: 4.25 | taste: 3.75 | feel: 4 | overall: 4.25

From notes, 12/9/10. Pours a brownish red color with a somewhat fizzy head, beige. Head dissipates quickly. It might be starting to thin out a bit, but this beer is still quite good. Lots of fruit - sour cherries and berries. Some vinegar and acid. Medium sour. Soft feel. A very good beer, though not quite up to the best of this wonderful style. Edit: 2010 version. Draft. Very good, again. Much more funky oak flavor than I remember from the last batch. Very woody dry. Sort of a cheesy flavor. Sour cherries are delicious and don’t overwhelm. Refined and complex. Full mouthfeel. The mouthfeel of Dissident is noticeably best from a fresh keg, in my opinion. Not too sour yet. Edit 2012: My opinion on Dissident has gone done somewhat. It seems a bit too sweet and the flavor is muddier than I remember. I'll revisit this review again at some point, but I'm lowering my scores for now.

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Photo of Braz
3.81/5  rDev -8.4%
look: 4.5 | smell: 4 | taste: 3.5 | feel: 4.25 | overall: 3.75

Got a bottle at Tacoma Boys. Says 2012 on the label. Cool packaging with the Makers Mark style wax covering, but was kind of a pain in the ass to open. Aromas of vinegar. Very sharp and sour fragrance. Amber orange in color with a tan head that doesn't sustain very long, but leaves nice lace on top. Can tell it's highly carbonated as it look and sounds explosive. Wow. This is a bomb to the palate. Heavy alcohol notes. Very tart and light sourness. The alcohol has an immediate warming effect. Fruity, sour apple and cherry flavors. Alot of red wine in the mix as well. I don't care for the aftertaste. It's very metallic and just off somehow. Too bad. Maybe not as carbonated as it looks at first but I think it lost alot of it sitting in the glass. Very interesting beer and I love the primary flavor, just don't like the finish.

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Photo of macrosmatic
4.19/5  rDev +0.7%
look: 3.5 | smell: 4.5 | taste: 4 | feel: 4 | overall: 4.5

Up front, a note - in the spirit of experimentation and for comparison purposes, I drank this 2012 bottle about 8 months before the "Best After" date stamped on the bottle. Finding myself with a couple of these brews, I wanted to get a baseline. That, and I'm extra-excited to try one!

Thanks to dujayhawk for this one. Reviewed from notes. Poured from bomber into a Peg's snifter glass.

A: Opaque medium brown, thin white foam floats on the top, low amount of visible carbonation. This isn't a particularly pretty beer.

S: The sour hits you from two feet away. Tangy, fruity, some oak sweetness and tannins. There's a bit of vinegar, a bit vinous...but overall, mouth-watering.

T: Tart and sour, and a fruitiness here (it's the cherry, I'm sure, but I don't know that I would have been able to pick that flavor out), oak tannins, some sweet malt. Sweet and dry simultaneously here. There is a vinous aspect as well. Dry finish.

M: Medium body, decent carbonation sensation, moderate alcohol presence.

O: This was very enjoyable, but I can't wait to see what happens over the next year or so. At present it just doesn't have the depth of flavor I'm looking for and expecting, but I was so far before the "best after" date...I have high hopes.

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Photo of BrewSnob
3.72/5  rDev -10.6%
look: 4 | smell: 2 | taste: 4 | feel: 5 | overall: 4.5

A: A grainy, yet creamy red and purple pour. Has a slight "Tsu-Xiao Province" look, for anyone who's visited the far east. The pour was memorable for many reasons. I cannot get into this.

S: My dude Dave came by as I was pouring and said "that damn beer smell like my FEET, bro", and I agree. Feet smell.

T: Smoky yet overall a taste of vinegar and slight taste of wine. There was also a very slight aftertaste that was unlike anything before. The only thing I can compare it to is it was 80% raspberry and 15% baseball glove and 5% man.

M: The Mouthfeel on this is as big and groovy as I've ever swished. Swish and you'll be a believer. Dave said "this feel like mustard", but that one I did NOT agree with.

O: I've never had a beer like this and I don't know if I ever will again. I only had enough money for one bottle, and I may let that stand as the greatest beer where I've only had money for 1 bottle.

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Photo of mnphish
4.35/5  rDev +4.6%
look: 4.5 | smell: 4.5 | taste: 4.5 | feel: 4 | overall: 4

2012 reserve 22oz bottle served into a Snifter

A: Ruby Red with a small head

S: Sour cherries and barnyard funk

T: Lots of of tart-sour cherry, light taste of vinegar and hints of oak/vanilla

M: Smooth and a medium body, nicely carbonated

O: Another A grade beer from Deschutes. Fire.

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Photo of TheSevenDuffs
4.08/5  rDev -1.9%
look: 4.5 | smell: 4 | taste: 4 | feel: 4.5 | overall: 4

2012 Vintage poured in to snifter.

A - Murky brown with an orange glow around the edges. A thin layer of dirty white head formed an reduced to some scattered bubbles around the edges of the glass.

S - Sour/tartness and lots of funk up front with sour cherries and oak also present.

T - A big tartness is present up front without being overly puckering or sour. Sour cherries, oak and some dark fruit also come through. There is a vinegar-like flavour present throughout and a touch of barnyard funk.

M - Medium body; creamy. Light carbonation.

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Photo of yamar68
4.2/5  rDev +1%
look: 4.5 | smell: 4.5 | taste: 4 | feel: 4.5 | overall: 4

Classic looking Bruin - murky burnt caramel capped with a brief khaki fizz that settles down to form a neat collar that actually retains from start to finish. Pretty good amount of alcohol oil as well. The second pour shows something entirely different - thick head that, again, fades fast but forms a beautiful cap on the beer that laces as well as you could expect.

Extremely acidic... fresh vanilla oak qualities, tart cherries, plum, maybe a bit of mushy berries, the alcohol character plays an apparent role without offending any other part of the beer... orange flesh.

Mmm... tart cherry, ripe raisin, banana peel (?), fruity tannin like brightness, not quite as dominantly sour as I have heard from some, but it is sure smooth... a delicious beer indeed.

Lovely stuff.

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Photo of N3rdM3t4l
4.75/5  rDev +14.2%
look: 5 | smell: 5 | taste: 4.5 | feel: 4.5 | overall: 5

Wax sealed brown bomber with best by date on label. Too bad I ignored that and am drinking it 9 months early!

A: sidepour gets no head or cap or ring. That could be the 11% or so alcohol doing its work. Pours a cloudy red tinted brown. Exactly what I expected to see. And boy do it look tasty.

S: I don't even need to be near the glass to smell the sour cherry. Making me salivate. Nose to the glass gets more cherry and some alcohol. Bits of oaky vanilla and no hops.

T: tart cherry followed by more tart and some more tartness. A hint of sweetness followed by more tart delicious cherry. Wonderfully sour beer.

M: medium body, good and smooth.

O: this bottle is 9months shy of its best after date so it needs a little age. It is kinda harsh but where it is going is fantastic. Can mostly taste the sour not much maltyness.

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Photo of Rutager
4.12/5  rDev -1%
look: 4 | smell: 4.5 | taste: 4 | feel: 4 | overall: 4

'12 bottle from my father in law. Is it fair to review this before the "best after" date? Oh well...
Reviewed 12/25/12. Drank this one after the Christmas morning mayhem. Santa deserved it, even though it was only 10am.

Appearance. Pours a hazy amber-brown with a slight pink tint and a thin, off-white head.

Smell. Cherries and plenty of funky old dank wood. Just a little booze and a very faint whiff of sweet caramel malt.

Taste. Sour cherries, dry tannic wood and leather, some sweet caramel and dry earthy funk with just a hint of spicy Belgian yeast.

Mouthfeel. Medium+ body, medium carbonation, faint warmth in the back of the throat.

Overall. Nice (and big) Flanders style sour with a good amount of fruit flavour. Anxious to try the 3 bi-year vertical in the cellar now.

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The Dissident from Deschutes Brewery
93 out of 100 based on 455 ratings.