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Birra Etrusca - Dogfish Head Brewery

Not Rated.
Birra EtruscaBirra Etrusca

Educational use only; do not reuse.
very good

136 Reviews
no score

(Send Samples)
Reviews: 136
Hads: 735
Avg: 3.75
pDev: 31.73%
Wants: 36
Gots: 110 | FT: 2
Brewed by:
Dogfish Head Brewery visit their website
Delaware, United States

Style | ABV
Herbed / Spiced Beer |  8.50% ABV

Availability: Rotating

Notes & Commercial Description:
Beer added by: billab914 on 12-09-2012

This beer is based on a beverage that may have been enjoyed by the Etruscans of Ancient Italy around 800 BC. A strong ale containing an Italian heirloom grain called Cappelli Senatore, along with pomegranate juice, raisins, and hazelnut flour, together with 3 types of honey: chestnut, wildflower, and clover. Spiced with several hop flowers, Gentian root and tree resin (think Myrrh) in the kettle.
Beer: Reviews & Ratings
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Reviews: 136 | Hads: 735
Photo of d1ckvanswype
4.7/5  rDev +25.3%
look: 4.75 | smell: 4 | taste: 5 | feel: 5 | overall: 4.75

22oz bomber into a wine glass.

A: Wow, what a stunning looking beer. Pours out as a copper-gold but sits in the glass as a resolute red-brown. When held to the light it turns back into amber-copper-gold. Really nice head, which disappeared before I could stop admiring the beer, the only visual flaw.

S: Honey and wheat, mixed with a strongly pomegranate scented must (pre-fermented wine), with a twinge of floral notes.

T: The first thing that hits me as the beer is held in my mouth is a warming cinnamon note, oddly, which turns to raisins, red grape skins, pomegranate tartness and the Gentian root, which comes out near the very, very end and turns into a warming, slightly numbing, slightly medicinal bitterness, which tastes EXACTLY like Moxie soda (available on the internet and in the Northeast US). The myrrh is also tasted in a very slight minty flavor mixed in with the Gentian root, but the myrrh comes out much more prominently in the next category.

M: This beer is SO exciting to drink! Sharp carbonation mixes with that cinnamon warming/numbing which feels dry on your tongue, but leaves your cheeks nice and moist. It turns refreshing and as the bitterness from the Gentian comes along and re-warms your palate with the alcohol the myrrh does something very cool, it brings a menthol-like coolness to the mouth when you breathe in. Just stunning.

O: It's the best of both wine and beer in one bottle, hands down. This is a great beer to taste on your own and I bet this would spark a lively debate during a tasting. Dogfish nailed it with this beer, I could easily drink this all the time, I hope this becomes a regular DFH brew.

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Photo of BlackDog
4.68/5  rDev +24.8%
look: 5 | smell: 4.5 | taste: 4.75 | feel: 4.5 | overall: 4.75

Birra Etrusca pours a deep but clear bronze with a healthy head and lively carbonation bubbles. Lacing and retention are both as good as it gets.

The complexity of this beer comes out early in the nose. There are aromas of dark fruit, alcohol, and a variety of spices and herbs.

The taste is equally as complex and gratifying. Malt, dark fruit and apple come through early. It's very herbal, with a spicy yeast flavor, followed by a slight honey sweetness with a nice floral finish.

Birra Estrusca is a medium-bodied beer with a lively carbonation. There's a lot of flavors going on, but they work together nicely to make this a fairly drinkable beer.

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Photo of uld2541
4.6/5  rDev +22.7%
look: 4 | smell: 4.5 | taste: 4.75 | feel: 4.75 | overall: 4.5

Unique is a definite understatement with this beer, and it's undoubtedly one of those love-it-or-hate-it type of things. If you like wine, you'll probably enjoy this beer. If you don't, you may still like it, but may be less likely.

Appearance is a light amber color with moderate head that doesn't stick around too long. The smell is very aromatic and, much like the taste, is kind of dry, if that makes any sense at all. There's a lot going on on the palette when you take a drink; some carbonation, overall pleasant. The taste is where this gets interesting. I've read some reviews that it's just a mish-mash of many different things; and while that is kind of the case, it works well for me. The two things in particular that stick out for me are; dry and pomegranate. The dry finish is what reminds me of a nice red wine, so maybe that falls more under mouth-feel, but nonetheless...overall, I wish they brewed more of it; one of my favorite all-time DFH brews.

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Photo of Jemonster
4.54/5  rDev +21.1%
look: 4 | smell: 5 | taste: 4.75 | feel: 4 | overall: 4

A: Amber/red/bronze/gold color with thin white head. Looks heavily carbonatated.

S: Smells like root beer. Wintergreen mint and anise are strongest, and there is a cinnamon scent. At the end there is some honey. A little bit like toasted marshmallows.

T: Sweet and spicy. Forward honey flavor and anise. It has a very faint hop flavor in the aftertaste.

M: Pretty heavily carbonated and with the gravity of something closer to a belgian tripel. The sweetness makes it seem more round and filling.

O: Pretty good and different. I would probably pick this up again if I came across it.

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Photo of jtierney89
4.5/5  rDev +20%
look: 4.5 | smell: 4.5 | taste: 4.5 | feel: 4.5 | overall: 4.5

Burnt copper with a big active head. Smells really nice. Very rustic like a farm in fall. Some spice box and fruitiness. Dark bread with Apple jam. Some Belgian funk.

Flavor is much like the nose but with a lot of tart Apple flavor. Big creamy body Belgian candi flavors, just enough carbonation. Funky with a tart and herbal finish. Really good, I like it.

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Photo of AdamBear
4.48/5  rDev +19.5%
look: 4.5 | smell: 4 | taste: 4.5 | feel: 4.5 | overall: 5

A-copper with a nice light tan head. pretty looking.

S-amber belgian sugars and dark honey. certain foreign spices i can't quite put my finger on. strong scent, really hits the nose. fairly unique.

T-comes in with a really unique taste of creamy tart cherries and various berries. Has an odd flavor reminiscent of pachouli. It's a strong and bright flavor, that really leaves the nose aside from the odd (but appreciated) foreign aspect. Ends with a pretty good dark belgian taste along with some maple and smokiness and some tartness. I like this a lot.

M-creamy with a medium carbonation.

O-This is one of those weird Dogfish experiments that gets it right. i think every time i take a sip, i get a new flavor, and they're all flavors i enjoy and find to be a nice surprise in beer. It's just a super enjoyable and fun beer to drink. Please go out and try this and share this!

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Photo of Blakaeris
4.36/5  rDev +16.3%
look: 4 | smell: 4.25 | taste: 4.5 | feel: 4 | overall: 4.5

Pours brilliantly clear bronze with a very slight head that completely disappears in about a second.

Aroma is initially dark fruit and alcohol heat. Then a wheaty complex spice quality becomes quite apparent. Musty and herbal with an underlying sweetness.

Taste is what the nose lead me to expect. Dense malt, with excellent fruit qualities – raisin, date, cherries, and apple. Very herbal with a mild honey sweetness before the surprisingly peppery yeasty spice takes over. Alcohol warmth lingers throughout. Finishes with a woody cedar dryness.

Mouthfeel is medium bodied. Slick and resinous.

Overall a complex, layered, and interesting brew. Definitely something off the beaten path and well worth a try.

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Photo of TheBrouMaster
4.34/5  rDev +15.7%
look: 4 | smell: 4.25 | taste: 4.5 | feel: 4.25 | overall: 4.25

A- pours a crystal clear deep copper, with a 1 finger head that quickly dissipates, the carbonation slashes into that glass and makes a cola like fizz

S- pomegranate right up front on the nose followed by rich brown sugar, dark fruits with a yeasty medicinal like finish

T- a fizzy carbonation pop followed by a tart cherry crush, sweet dark fruits, subtle orange and honey follow, finishes with a mix of alcohol honey and pomegranate

M- light to medium in body, easy to drink, fizzy tingling carbonation, sweet with a slightly dry finish

O- very interesting ancient ale, tons of flavor, very complex, slightly medicinal and funky. Not bad, would def go for another pint.

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Photo of ngeunit1
4.32/5  rDev +15.2%
look: 4 | smell: 4.5 | taste: 4.5 | feel: 4 | overall: 4

A - Amber-orange with a finger of frothy slightly off-white head. Fades medium.

S - Caramel malts, honey, nuttiness, dark fruits, raisins, pomegranates, Belgian yeast esters, spices, and floral notes.

T - Caramel, honey, dark fruits, raisins, pomegranates, floral notes, Belgian yeast, spices, some resiny flavors, nuttiness, some lemon zest.

M - Medium-plus bodied, moderate carbonation. Smooth and a bit syrupy with a sweet, lightly spicy, and lightly floral finish.

D - Very bold and complex but well balanced. Lots of different and interesting flavors.

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Photo of mooseo
4.3/5  rDev +14.7%
look: 4 | smell: 4.5 | taste: 4.25 | feel: 4.25 | overall: 4.25

1 pt 9.4oz bottle into tulip.

A - Clear rich copper-amber with a huge dense white head.

S - Sweet apple, pear, and banana. Bready with hints of honey and herbal spice.

T - A tasty mix of fresh fruit (apple, pomegranate), wheat, bready malt, and peppery spice. Finishes slightly tart with dark fruit, honey and smoked woody malt.

M - Medium bodied, smooth and slick. Crisp and refreshing, high carbonation.

O - An extremely drinkable, flavorful rendition of an Italian ancient ale. Complex and balanced. The alcohol is masked very well.

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Photo of Boto
4.25/5  rDev +13.3%
look: 4 | smell: 4 | taste: 4.5 | feel: 4 | overall: 4.25

Draught @ Birreria: This one was served in an interesting stem glass. It poured a clear, amber color. There was a small dense off-white head that left no lacing. It has an interesting nose: a nice spice that must be the myrrh. I also get a whiff of the pomegranate. It has a very nice taste. Spice, a hint of the pomegranate, and some wheat in the body. Somewhat dry, with a faint fruit sweetness in the finish. Really interesting!

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Photo of DovaliHops
4.25/5  rDev +13.3%
look: 4.25 | smell: 4.25 | taste: 4.25 | feel: 4.25 | overall: 4.25

Pours a clear, reddish amber color with a medium white head that disappears quickly. Scent is different than any other beer my nose has stubbled upon. Immediately, I get the sense that this beer has wheat in it. Wheat-like aroma with dark fruits...raisins and prunes. I also get red grapes and the green apple comes through very nicely in the end of the aroma. Sweet honey with some ginger and cinnamon. I don't really pick up any pomegranate in the nose. Belgian yeast...with wine-like aromas. Taste is just as it smells, but a bit more vinous. This beer has some lovely wine characteristics with the grape flavors. Belgian yeast with tart red grapes and tart green apple flavors. There are tart flavors, but the beer is not tart overall. The raisiny dark fruit flavors mellow out the tartness. Honey flavors with a pomegranate juice-like finish. Such a complex beer. Mouthfeel is nicely carbonated and juicy at the same time. Just a little sticky. Drinkability is high, ABV is definitely there, but doesn't affect drinkability. Overall, this is a very complex, unique, tasty brew from DFH. I love BDB, so I'm sure they had a lot of influence on this one.

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Photo of IckyT2012
4.22/5  rDev +12.5%
look: 4 | smell: 4.5 | taste: 4.25 | feel: 4 | overall: 4

Found this bottle aged 3 years. I don't know what it tasted like fresh, but the honey is strong with this one. Drinks more like a fruit juice than a beer.

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Photo of KickbacksSteve
4.21/5  rDev +12.3%
look: 4 | smell: 4.75 | taste: 4 | feel: 3.75 | overall: 4.25

On tap at Kickbacks in Jax. Poured into a snifter. White head, moderate retention on a clear copper body. Mostly clear lacing. Very perfumy aroma includes caramel malts, candi sugar, a Belgian-y type of yeast like aroma, some sweet fruits (undistinguishable) and maybe some alcohol...quite interesting. Taste includes again some sweet malts, some interesting spicing and again some sweet fruity like taste. The flavors are really hard to pinpoint and they certainly mix together to form a flavor that I'm quite sure has never been tasted before. Quite nice, I enjoy the aroma more than the taste but very ambitious and typical Dogfish Head awesomeness.

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Photo of NeroFiddled
4.19/5  rDev +11.7%
look: 3.75 | smell: 4 | taste: 4.5 | feel: 4 | overall: 4

Birra Etrusca by Dogfish Head in collaboration with Birra del Borgo and Baladin
25.4 oz. bottle, no apparent freshness date

The first thing this beer reminded me of was how much I miss the TV show "Brew Masters" on the Discovery Channel. Damn you, A-B!!!

Imagine this episode: Sam and Dr. Pat meet in Milton (scenes of fermentation vessels), and the Museum of Archeology at Penn (pan across an Egyptian sarcophagus) to discuss their next beer adventure. Dr. Pat grabs his Indiana Jones hat and whip, and they hop a plane to Italy (plane takes off / lands). After a few scenes of their silhouettes as they climb the hills of Tuscany, they start to dig in front of some ruins and find some broken clay pots. They meet up with the boys from Baladin and Borgo, have a few laughs and talk about beer, and then settle down to a huge Italian dinner made by a 104 year old mother who doesn't speak any English (cue pictures of Sam dancing with her at the end of the night, and some of the guests looking a little loopy from too much beer). Return to the U.S., talk about the historic significance of myrrh, brew the beer, show more tanks and bottling - and it's a wrap!

On to the beer... it's bronze in color with a reddish cast beneath a full head of fluffy white. The aroma expresses sweetish, dark caramel accented malt with an undercurrent of spice and a waft of earthiness. It's not bold, but neither is it bland, and the flavor goes the same way - you might expect it to be over-done, but it's actually a very accessible beer. The list of ingredients is as follows: honey, hazelnut flour, heirloom wheat, myrrh, gentian root, raisins, pomegranate juice, and pomegranates (why pomegranates are listed twice I don't know but I'm guessing it has to do with labeling guidelines). The honey is certainly clear, it almost comes through more than the malt. And the raisins are easy to find as well. Right there you've got a pretty good beer as it is, but then you also get a note of the pomegranate in the finish which lends it a light touch of complexity. What about the other ingredients? Well they're there, I just don't recognize them, and I'm guessing neither will you. It's not like we're adding gentian root to our salads, or dusting our morning omelets with myrrh. Both are bitter substances, and given the lack of hop aromas or flavors, I'm guessing that these were what was used to balance the beer in ancient times.

So how to rate this beer? It can only be done hedonistically as it doesn't follow any known style guidelines? Forgetting price, or any other side-factor or variable, and focusing simply on the beer itself, would you drink it again? And how much would you want to drink it again?

Interestingly enough, in the world of beer, wine, and liquor there's not much that reminds me of this as much as Dogfish Head's "Midas Touch" (which is, of course, the first beer that they did with Dr. Pat). There may be some beers that come close, and perhaps there's a bit of a dry red wine to it, but nothing springs to mind. And I liked the "Midas Touch", but I think I like "Birra Etrusca" better. It's lighter in body, less sweet, and softer in character. The alcohol is not as apparent, and overall, it's a much more rounded and polished beer. I thought it looked good, it smelled good, it tasted good, and it was nice in the mouth with the body of a rich wine. I'd very much like to enjoy it again. And I also think it would be a very interesting beer to pair against food.

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Photo of albertjr21
4.19/5  rDev +11.7%
look: 4.5 | smell: 4.75 | taste: 4 | feel: 3.75 | overall: 4

Served in a DFH goblet, brew pours a beautiful clear burning copper under a creamy thin layer of foam. Aroma isn't shy at all and seems abundant with various hints of earthy, herbal, pungent and citrusy ingredients to the concoction...Flavors on the palate are equally as complex with notes that I can best decipher as a dominating sweet and tart blend of fruit. Fun beer for a tasting party and something different from the usual for the craft brew lover and wine snob alike...

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Photo of smakawhat
4.18/5  rDev +11.5%
look: 4.5 | smell: 4 | taste: 4 | feel: 4.5 | overall: 4.5

Poured from the bottle into an official Dogfish Head Ale glass.

A gorgeouse red and crystal clear amber, hints of orange (is that BRONZE?!) colors with a giant cauldron of fire carbonation rising in the middle. Head makes an easy three fingers, settles slowly to a simple collar, and a nice puck early on. One great looking beer, the body color is particularly beautiful.

Nose has a good simple sense of honey. Light malts and airy sensations, even some beeswax, hints of fruit apple. Solid, inviting.

Palate hits with a very obvious wine like body. Malt backbone carries some depth, but there is a large apple component to this, but much different from cider, more of an earthy rustic quality. After-finish carries mead like qualities and honey lip smacking coating. Visible carbonation hints at lots of fizzy character but it's not there, this is certainly not seltzery at all, but a light wine like simple depth. There is a good amount of tannic nut and bitterness on the tip of the tongue after the finish. Nice controlled honey sweet profile, and a faint hint of sourness.

Overall this is just a good fun romp, and quite a neat one not unlike Noble Rot. The missing link perhaps between beer and wine? Maybe maybe not, but certainly a lot of fun to be had. Tough to food pair this one though, Sam suggests pasta, but I am just not convinced on that one.

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Photo of utfiero
4.18/5  rDev +11.5%
look: 4 | smell: 4 | taste: 4.25 | feel: 4.25 | overall: 4.25

Color- brassy red. Slight head.

Aroma- Fermented fruit and raisin.

Taste- Interesting and unique. Starts mildly fruity with light sweetness yet in the late middle turns slightly sour finishing with an earthy lingering mild floral note. The 8.5% ABV is well masked. Another quality brew from DFH.

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Photo of Oakenator
4.18/5  rDev +11.5%
look: 4.5 | smell: 4 | taste: 4 | feel: 4.5 | overall: 4.5

Pours a deep amber brown with a hint of ruby color. Good 1-2 finger head at pour that after relaxing remains a thin layer on top of the beer. This beer looks alive as it continues to bubble from the bottom of the glass (and retain the layer of head on top). Smell is sweet yet sour. Taste also leads down a slight sour path - unexpected - but then again the presense of the pomegranate juice and fruit help this along. Sweetness from honey present. Sweet and sour mix together from front to back.

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Photo of EMV
4.17/5  rDev +11.2%
look: 4.25 | smell: 4 | taste: 4.25 | feel: 4 | overall: 4.25

Poured from a bomber into a tulip glass.

L: Pours a deep clear mahogany color with 1 finger of off-white head that falls rapidly.

S: Smells of dark fruits and cherries. Honey sweetness and alcohol.

T/F: Tart at the start... cherries and plums that is well balanced by honey and spices. Delicious flavor, nice alcoholic warmth, and a smooth finish. Carbonation is mild to moderate.

O: Great little beer and off the beaten path. I like this more than others in the style.... and more fruit/honey and less spice I think is a good thing. I'd enjoy having this again and another fine effort from Dogfish Head.

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Photo of NCMatt
4.15/5  rDev +10.7%
look: 3.5 | smell: 4 | taste: 4.5 | feel: 3.75 | overall: 4

It's a bit spicy and a bit tart but nothing extreme in either direction. Paired very well with ham. Good to try once but not something I could see getting with any consistency. The bottle was dated about 8 months old at time of purchase. I don't believe the age was a problem or changed the flavors much, if any.

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Photo of rfgetz
4.14/5  rDev +10.4%
look: 3.75 | smell: 4 | taste: 4.25 | feel: 4 | overall: 4.25

Pours a golden amber, moderate froth, quickly gone. Scent brings big floral notes, flowery honey, light herbal quality, some bready yeastyness and spice, sugar and fruit. Taste has a lot going on as well... strong floral, honey, grape notes, moderate sugar, herbal, spice notes, rounded out with a grainy and bready profile. Medium bodied, some prickly carbonation. Overall, impressed with the uniqueness and drinkability of this one, only thing to question is value.

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Photo of TheCraftBrewReview
4.14/5  rDev +10.4%
look: 4.25 | smell: 4.5 | taste: 4 | feel: 4 | overall: 4

Having long been a fan of Dogfish Head’s various eclectic offerings, I spotted this one on the shelf of my local package store a few weeks back. I was aware that the brewery had created a series of “Ancient Ales”, which focus on recipes several hundred years old. Perhaps the most widely recognizable variation so far created has been “Midas Touch”, which is somewhere between a wine and mead. This particular beer was created after the team traveled to Rome with molecular archaeologist Dr. Pat McGovern. Through analyzing drinking vessels found in 2,800-year-old Etruscan tombs, the variance was created, with the two main ingredients being two-row malted barley and heirloom Italian wheat. Curious to see if my inner Italian was satisfied with this brew? Read on!

Appearance – 87: I poured nearly half of the 750 mL bottle vigorously into a tulip glass, and was immediately struck by how fast the bubbles dissipated. There was no foam, or head to speak of in the slightest, almost as if one was pouring a wine instead. The coloring of the beer is a dark caramel.

Aroma – 93: After a sniff or two, the main notes that I was left with were the raisins and pomegranates. The beer (if you can even call it that) has a distinctly sweet smell that bordered on floral it was so pungent. Quite delightful to be honest with you, given that most of the recent reviews I’ve done have been with porters or stouts, where the malts and chocolate/coffee tones become rather “you’ve smelled one, you’ve smelled them all” after a while.

Body & Texture – 86: The beer sits in your mouth similar to a barleywine of sorts – very light and crisp. A layering sensation immediately hits your palate upon first sip, with sweet honey complimenting the heirloom wheat, followed by raisins then pomegranate juice. The aftertaste it leaves is pleasant – very sweet, but not overpowering. Very little “body” to the beverage and it drinks much closer to juice.

Taste – 85: When grading this beer I almost needed to separate my preconceived notions of what a beer tasted like versus what I was actually sampling. In terms of pure taste, it can almost be summed up as pomegranate juice with honey and alcohol – a slight sourness remains afterwards but it isn’t terribly noticeable. Dark fruits dominate the taste, and it leaves a distinctly Belgian taste to it – almost equivalent of a dubel. I’ve never had a “beer” like this before in my life, and doubt that I will do so again. Sweeter than I anticipated. Perhaps there is a reason that the Etruscans were wiped out!

Overall – 87.3 (Great): The label grabbed my attention from the start – ancient script writing in the style of my ancestors. Dogfish Head infuses their beer with almost anything that they can get their hands onto, and this particular offering is no different. The upside to the beverage is that it tastes almost akin to a juice or wine – very smooth and fruity with a distinct smell. However, the taste is lacking considering what I expected, and given the variations of ingredients that they added to the beer, perhaps eliminating one or two to have a more concise impression would be appreciated. Interesting to try and would certainly recommend sipping on it if available locally, but not something that I would ever come back to.

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Photo of jondeelee
4.12/5  rDev +9.9%
look: 3.5 | smell: 4 | taste: 4.5 | feel: 3.5 | overall: 4

Birra Etrusca opens to a funky, slightly sour fruit-and-bread nose that is immediately intriguing. White and light concord grape notes are present, as well as light pineapple and cherry fruit esters, wildflower honey, and touches of raisin. Put these fruits together and you wind up with something like a cross between a Dr. Pepper, a cola, and fresh-squeezed grape juice. Joining these is a bready underbelly, with tones resembling those found in yeasty, floury artisinal breads with crusts so hard you have to break them with a hammer. Dusty wheat and light hay add further earthiness. But the sugars easily dominate the nose, which is, as a whole, very interesting, and certainly unlike almost anything else on the market. It ends up smelling more like alcoholic grape-and-mixed-fruit juice than beer, with just enough of a bready, rooty counterbalance to make it interesting.

On the tongue, the beer opens with a sweet rush of fruits and sugars, with wildflower honey, lemon-lime, raisin, grape, pomegranate and pineapple joined by hints of a Belgian-like banana and clove mixture, as well as prune juice. The fruits tend largely toward the sweet side, though the pomegranate and raisin add funky, slightly sour runnels. The beer is more spicy here than hinted at in the nose, white pepper and clove dominating and lightly searing the tongue and soft palate with paprika-like intensity (though without the paprika flavor), with additional touches of cinnamon and cardamom, adding a lovely spice mixture to the fruit that is somewhat reminiscent of mulled cider. A good bread backing—again, like hard-crust bread—adds earthiness, and the hazelnut flour seems to add a touch of nut, but just a hint. There is perhaps just the slightest mineral overtone from the bronze aging. The aftertaste is a continuation the main mouthful, lingering on the tongue in sweet-sour-funky-spicy goodness for a long time. Mouthfeel is medium-light to medium, and carbonation is medium to medium-high, almost champagne-like in strength.

Overall, this is surprisingly palatable beer, and perhaps my favorite of Dogfish Head’s Ancient Ale series. This one is very much like a Belgian in many aspects, with Flemish and Saison flavors coming through as well. I did wish for a heavier mouthfeel and much less carbonation, but the fruit-spice notes were excellent, and delicious. If this tastes anything like what the ancient Etruscans actually drank, then I certainly know where I’ll be heading once I get my time travel machine up and running.

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Photo of BEERchitect
4.11/5  rDev +9.6%
look: 3.75 | smell: 4.5 | taste: 4 | feel: 4 | overall: 4

Dogfish Heads' curriosity has gotten the best of them again. With all the can't-help-themselves attitude, they find creative juices in Italy. Resurrecting ancient ale flavor with the help of Del Borgo an Baladin breweries, a very wine-freindly taste emerges from the ashes.

Bright gold in color, the beer shares tawny copper highlights with peps of amber in its body. A slim stark-white foam tops the beer and reluctantly endures half the session before sucumbing to the honey and herbs underneath.

Highly floral aromas seem vibrant with a bouquet that spans rose pedals, honeysuckle, perfume, fruity, and herbal. Backed with a supple sweet note of honey and grape, the beer takes on mead-like proportions- at least to the nose.

Honey sweetness falls on the mouth with a thin fruity/floral interplay. As the sweetness fades, the fruit and potpourri note remain, reigning in periphreal notes of pepper spice, oak, wine must, and grapes. Rye-like flavors add a peppery earthen zip that evokes impressions of oak-aged chardonnay and sweet riesling. The beer's overall appealing taste is as much of wine as it is of beer.

Medium-light on the palate, the beer is big on flavor but is rather well attenuated, allowing its early creaminess and honey weight to exit early, favoring a florl, spicy finish. Wood-like tannins give the beer as much balance as hops or alcohol.

Etrusca reminds me of Midas' Touch, but with more complex dryness, herbal, mead-like touches. Its heavy wine tilt creates a lot of allure, but also becomes challenging to the taste buds.

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Birra Etrusca from Dogfish Head Brewery
85 out of 100 based on 136 ratings.