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Brute - Ithaca Beer Company

Not Rated.
BruteBrute

Educational use only; do not reuse.
BA SCORE
98
world-class

823 Ratings
THE BROS
-
no score

(send 'em beer!)
Ratings: 823
Reviews: 390
rAvg: 4.43
pDev: 9.03%
Wants: 1,114
Gots: 144 | FT: 6
Brewed by:
Ithaca Beer Company visit their website
New York, United States

Style | ABV
American Wild Ale |  6.50% ABV

Availability: Rotating

Notes & Commercial Description:
Beer added by: albern on 06-22-2008

This beer is retired; no longer brewed.

Brewed with vintage (aged) local hops, barley, wheat, corn, aged in oak with Brett and finished with three types of champagne yeast.
Beer: Ratings & Reviews
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Ratings: 823 | Reviews: 390 | Display Reviews Only:
Photo of urwithdave
4.33/5  rDev -2.3%
look: 4.5 | smell: 4 | taste: 4.5 | feel: 4 | overall: 4.5

Reviewing from notes taken on 03/12/10. Shared by gtreid at the Hunahpu release.

A- Pours golden yellow in color. Big fluffy white head. Good retention and moderate lacing.

S- Sour apples and lemons. The funk is present, however, not overwhelming. Has a earthy smell to it also.

T- Lemons and other citrus notes up front. Maybe some pears thrown in the mix. Nice and sour! Almost get a lemon warhead flavor.

M- Nice and bubbly! Is there really alcohol in this. Wow....could be dangerous!

Photo of alpinebryant
4.43/5  rDev 0%
look: 4.5 | smell: 4 | taste: 4.5 | feel: 4 | overall: 5

Batch E!018
Pours a healthy blonde head with a white lacing that does not go away.

Smell of sour tart pale malt with some funk.

Taste of pale malt mixed with acidic sourness of citrus, Czech hops, some barnyard and funk. There is a dry champagne finish to state the obvious as stated on the label that it is finished with a blend of three champagne yeasts. Could be slightly more complexity to the malt profile, but this is done well as is.

High carbonation, not gushing from the bottle, but very tasty and very drinkable. This went above my expectations and I am looking forward to many more sour ales from Ithaca Beer Company.

Photo of ChrisPro
4.24/5  rDev -4.3%
look: 5 | smell: 3.5 | taste: 4.5 | feel: 4 | overall: 4.5

750 mL Batch 010 from 2008 tasted on 1/1/10 (Happy New Year!)

Pours beautiful gold with gigantic frothy white head that lingers. Champagne like effervescence lasts for many many mniutes. One of the most gorgeous beers I've ever seen. Lemon and grapefruit aroma. Barely some honey sweetness then an incredible tart lemon finish. Great carb but champagne bubbles make this one smooth sour. Definitely one of the best sours I've ever tried.

Photo of masterhomebrewer
4.33/5  rDev -2.3%
look: 4.5 | smell: 4 | taste: 4.5 | feel: 4 | overall: 4.5

A = Pours a light golden color with a big-ass (three inches +), white head of tight, small bubbles that fades quickly, leaving a short cover of about a half centimeter.

S = Green apples, bretty funk, vomit sour, white grapes.

T = Lactic sour, white grapes, lemons, and dusty-leather brett quickly give way to a streaming dryness.

M = Prickly carbonation and light body combine with dryness to make for a crisp and refreshing mouthfeel.

D = Wow. Really drinkable. Moderate alcohol, high carbonation, moderate sourness and ultra-dry finish all work in tandem to create a supremely drinkable sour.

Photo of orbitalr0x
4.7/5  rDev +6.1%
look: 4.5 | smell: 4.5 | taste: 5 | feel: 4.5 | overall: 4.5

2008 vintage. Batch# E!010

Pours into my glass a wonderfully clear golden yellow with super active carbonation that forms a cragly mountain of white foam on top of the brew. Aromas of crisp malts bathed in a wall of bright Brett and earthy barnyard accents. Grape and citrus fruit accents run throughout. Lemon zest as well.

First sip is a mix of bright fruit flavors and Brett with a crisp dryness throughout. Grape, citrus, lemon zest moving into a puckering tartness. A touch acidic with a nice barnyard funk kick. Flavors run all over the palate with a lingering tartness. Awesome brew.

Mouthfeel is crisp and refreshing with fast moving carbonation. Goes down easily and is a pleasure to drink. Quite an exemplary wild ale here, not too funky and not too sour. Just packed full of flavor. Well worth seeking out.

Photo of rpstevens
4.48/5  rDev +1.1%
look: 4.5 | smell: 4 | taste: 4.5 | feel: 4.5 | overall: 5

Pours a hazy cloudy light yellow with a tight cap of bone white bubbles. There is minimal lacing on the sides of the glass.

The smell is tart, but subtly funky. There are tones of musty oak, hay and lots of sour fruits including green apple, lemon, orange and tart grapes. The smell is very subtle and not overdone, but a little faint.

The tastes are more subtle sour notes, lemon zest, grape skins. There is some hay, oak and mustiness. Much like the smell this beer is just smooth, subtle, crisp and clean.

The beer is well carbonated, light bodied and very crisp. This has a lot of clean flavors that finish nice and dry. The alcohol is never overpowering at all, this is one of the most drinkable sours I have ever had.

Photo of ktrillionaire
4.94/5  rDev +11.5%
look: 4 | smell: 5 | taste: 5 | feel: 5 | overall: 5

A – It pours a peachy-orange-gold with a good bit of foam and some spotty lace. It is clear for the first glass you pour. Cloudy thereafter. The more cloudy, the better it tastes, in my opinion.

S – By smell alone, this beer is certainly all its cracked up to be. The aroma presents a perfectly executed tartness, with tons of Champagne character, a gang of funk, fruity impressions including pear, apricot, peach, apple, lemon and cherry, as well as a distinct white oak character.

T – The flavor of this brew is outstanding and the balance is sublime; it is so perfectly potent and funky. Sour pear and white peach impressions are immediately apparent, but the fruitiness is myriad. The acidic-vinegar element is perfectly balanced and punctuated by the Champagne yeast. Everything about these flavors is big, bold, tart, and exceptionally potent, and then suddenly there is an amazing totally clean finish.

M – The mouthfeel is the best ever, it is so fully flavorful and brilliantly effervescent and then it just finishes totally and completely, leaving nothing but a clean mouth-watering sensation. Like magic.

D – Far beyond superlatives…

Photo of gford217
4.47/5  rDev +0.9%
look: 4 | smell: 4.5 | taste: 4.5 | feel: 4.5 | overall: 4.5

Batch 1 bottle shared at the Brick Store by a generous soul.

Pours a milky golden yellow with a fluffy white head that recedes to a small soapy cap that leaves decent lacing.

The aroma is light and vibrant with tart lemons and some citrus hops. The brett character is present but not dominant as the aroma is seemingly all about the light tart fruit.

The taste starts with a puckering tart sourness. Lots of lemons with a hints of vinegar and funk. There is an underlying fruit sweetness as well with peaches and green apples. It's a very bright tartness overall with a bit of funk and spicy oak in the finish.

The mouthfeel is effervescent with the champagne yeast very evident. It's light to medium bodied and extremely crisp and dry in the finish.

This is a wonderful beer and just so tart in a bright, lemony tart king of way. So refreshing and drinkable.

Photo of brownbeer
4.57/5  rDev +3.2%
look: 4 | smell: 4.5 | taste: 4.5 | feel: 4.5 | overall: 5

Pale golden with a big white head and lots of bubbles. Looks a little like Champagne.

Funky nose, as expected, white peach, sweat, and leather to boot. The aroma of a great American Wild.

Flavors of under-ripe peach and white grapes, great fruit to sour balance. CO2 effervescence and a super dry finish make it a very Champange-like experience. More? Yes, please.

Photo of Mistofminn
4.28/5  rDev -3.4%
look: 4 | smell: 3.5 | taste: 4.5 | feel: 4 | overall: 5

In honor of our current trade, I decided to crack open a bottle from our previous trade. This one goes out to kmurray8621.

Batch E!018

Pours a clear golden color initially, and subsequent pours get more hazy and more orange. A very lively carbonation going on inside the glass. The head fizzes up and fizzes out without leaving and lacing, kind of disappointing but for a wild ale not uncommon. Probably the champagne yeast used.

The nose is incredibly sweet. I was kind of shocked, to say the least, after hearing how sour this was and how enjoyable. Sweet is somewhat of a turn off in wilds for me, and this one just isn't doing it for me. I get light (very light) tart smells but it's mostly sweet. Distinct sweet pear smell.

Thank god...this isn't sweet at all. In fact, it's incredibly tart and sour. Boy was I getting a little worried, but the first sip put all my worries to rest. A sour pear like flavor comes through the most, with light Brett characters right in the finish. A dry, acidic finish.

Mouthfeel is light to medium, with a crisp carbonation bite to go along with the stinging sourness and acidity. Drinkability is really good, maybe one of the most drinkable sours I've had.

Overall, while the nose wasn't quite what I wanted it to be, this one steps it up and finishes a winner. Glad I got to try this and even gladder I got a second bottle to sit on for a little while longer (while the only thing I hope it improves upon is losing the sweet nose).

Photo of ricke
4.2/5  rDev -5.2%
look: 4 | smell: 4 | taste: 4.5 | feel: 4 | overall: 4

Thanks to brewdan for this one.

Batch 1.

Hazy pale yellow with a big rocky white head. Good head retention.

The aroma is quite mild and light with a wheaty tart character. Notes of brett, barrel and sweet lemon peel, and hints of unripe bananas. Balanced smell.

The taste is more interesting, though, and more eventful. Nice sweet fruity character up front with some malts shining through. Then, a quite prominent tartness develops with notes of barrel and brett. The finish is dry and effervescent with tart fruity notes. All in all, lovely development of the flavors and aromas in the mouth.

The body is light and the carbonation is very lively. Dry mouthfeel but with some residual smooth sweetness.

Interesting and well done. Nice sparkling character, but gets repetitive after a while.

Photo of drabmuh
4.5/5  rDev +1.6%
look: 4.5 | smell: 4.5 | taste: 4.5 | feel: 4.5 | overall: 4.5

Long time want, great great beer. Did not disappoint. I will be seeking this beer out in greater quantities.

Beer is straw yellow and hazy. Forms a thin white head with a lot of lacing on the glass.

The aroma is strong citric sour....beautiful.

Beer is medium to low bodied. Great sweetness followed by huge tartness. Woodsey, funky. There is a lot of carbonation in the mouth to carry that sour throughout. I love this beer.

Photo of jrallen34
4.64/5  rDev +4.7%
look: 4 | smell: 5 | taste: 4.5 | feel: 4 | overall: 5

I drank this from a bottle into a tasting glass at EBF.

The beer pours a light murky gold with good retention and lacing on a white head...Aroma is light but its really nice. Funky start to finish, but its so nice and eniticing turns, me on to try...The taste again is nothing spectacular but its awesome funk start to finish...The feel is nice and this is a really drinkable sour...This was one of my highlights at EBF. I couldn't wait to try it and when I did, I had to go back for seconds. A really really really good wild ale.

Photo of projectflam86
4.35/5  rDev -1.8%
look: 4.5 | smell: 4.5 | taste: 4.5 | feel: 4 | overall: 4

Batch E!018

A- Pours a light golden color with a touch of orange. A large frothy foam head appears and leaves nice lacing.

S- I'm getting tons of light citrus and fruit aromas. Mostly orange, lemon, apple, and peach. A bit of funk and leather as well.

T- Huge tart splash of fruit with a mouth puckering sour finish. Loads of lemon zest, orange peel, and green apple throughout. The Brett character is quite present. A bit of earth, musty hops, and funk in the finish.

M- A touch thin with plenty of carbonation.

D- Overall a very nice sour but a bit taxing if you want to drink the whole bottle alone.

Photo of donkeyrunner
3.19/5  rDev -28%
look: 4.5 | smell: 3 | taste: 3 | feel: 4 | overall: 3

Foil + cap + cork ensures no one will open this beer accidentally. Runaway, bulbous white head. Hazy golden straw color. Great retention.

Smells slap your grandma sour: Lemon Heads candy, sweaty penny, and tortilla chip aroma. Doesn't taste as sour as it smells. Lemon meringue (suggestive?) and corn notes.

A lot of times when I sample beers on the top 100 it's evident why it's there even if I don't like said beer. I'm at a loss with this one.

Photo of rfgetz
4.22/5  rDev -4.7%
look: 3.5 | smell: 4 | taste: 4.5 | feel: 4.5 | overall: 4

Pours a hazy, pale straw color with full, large bubbled white head. Decent retention and no lacing. Smell is a light blend of straw, white grape, sour apple and a tart sourness. Taste mimics smell but is a little more agressive and brings hints of oak. Body is medium but very spritzy due to the champage yeasts. Fantastic brew, while the flavors are not the most complex, this is one of the best overall blends of simple ingredients in a wild ale.

Photo of PerzentRizen
3.78/5  rDev -14.7%
look: 4 | smell: 3.5 | taste: 4 | feel: 5 | overall: 3

I finally got a chance to try Brute. Now I'm not a sour nut, but this one is very good. Light and spritzy on the tongue. Tangy flavors but not overpowering. The color is golden with a stark white head. This one has high carbonation, low alcohol and is fairly dry.

Photo of ThaBobfather
4.35/5  rDev -1.8%
look: 4.5 | smell: 4.5 | taste: 4.5 | feel: 4 | overall: 4

Tasting notes from Formal in Fratlinburg, TN

Pours a nearly neon golden-yellow color with a decent topping of bleached white foamy head.
Smell is highly acrid with some citrus hints-like opening a pickle jar.
Taste lives up to the name-this is a brute- flavor profile is offensively acidic with a sour patch kids taste.
Finish is not clean with a solid citrus-sour after-bite.
Drinks well-flavor will hang up lesser men especially at this ABV.

*Fiance hated it*

Photo of womencantsail
4.42/5  rDev -0.2%
look: 4 | smell: 4.5 | taste: 4.5 | feel: 4 | overall: 4.5

Bottle from Batch 1 courtesy of imperialking and opened to share at the PtY release on 2/5/10.

A: The pour is a cloudy light golden straw color with a fluffy white head.

S: The nose is not terribly complex nor funky, but has a very nice amount of lactic tartness. This provides a refreshing citrus and white grape aroma which I find very pleasing in wild ales. There is a slight touch of oak and Brett, to keep things in check.

T: This is not a terribly "funky" beer, but that does not bother me. The lemon, green apple, and grape notes go quite well with the dry and tannic feel of the beer from the wood and the Brett.

M: The body is a bit on the light side with a very high level of carbonation and a dry finish. The champagne yeast definitely provides a little something different here.

D: I've heard mixed reviews of this beer, but I found Batch 1 to be quite delicious at this point. I have a bottle of Batch 2 which I will be saving for some time as it appears this one gets better with age.

Photo of scootny
4.47/5  rDev +0.9%
look: 4 | smell: 4.5 | taste: 4.5 | feel: 4.5 | overall: 4.5

Capped and corked with some kind of foamy plastic. A sizable head with good retention and bits of lace here and there. Quite a bit of carbonation in the glass. Smell is like a deep dry white wine. Sour apples and grapes abound. Light malted grains and funky Brett. Taste is vinous with a healthy malt core A light fruitiness with a firm woody oak. Tart and juicy with a strong dry puckering sourness in the finish. A lingering taste of malted grains. Wonderfully subtle and complex. Feel is crisp and light with a velvety texture as it develops in the mouth. Quite drinkable and a great one to have around wine snobs. This has all the strong points of a great white with the added flavors of a superb fermented grain beverage.

Photo of Katahdin
3.85/5  rDev -13.1%
look: 4.5 | smell: 4.5 | taste: 3.5 | feel: 4 | overall: 3.5

An interesting beer that belies its small ABV. Definitely seesm much bigger. Has a heavy citrus aroma on the pour and a tangy taste to it. The oak aging is tough to discern in the taste or the feel but one can definitely taste the champagne yeast. Very chewy at times, probably from the corn and malt. Compares to Otter Creek's Quercus but not as good of a beer as that.

Photo of tpd975
4.28/5  rDev -3.4%
look: 4.5 | smell: 4 | taste: 4.5 | feel: 4.5 | overall: 4

A: Pours a cloudy pale shade of yellow. The head is nice, tall, and puffy. Shows good retention and lace.

S: Nice lemon grass type aromas. Very citric, with light oak, and brett.

T: Lemony up front, nice acid tartness. The Brett is there along with light oak and green apple.

M: Very light, very bubbly.

D: Very good, I really dig the Ithaca sours.

Photo of thekevlarkid
4.14/5  rDev -6.5%
look: 4 | smell: 5 | taste: 4 | feel: 4 | overall: 3.5

Out of a lovely, gold-labeled bottle, (batch E!018) this beer was a murky, golden hue with a thin white head. The collar was quite thin and the lacing in spots. The aroma was what I will describe as "fun", candy-like sweetness, fruity yeast, lemon and green apples similar to a jolly rancher candy. The flavors were tart and appropriate for the style with out being puckering. Though dominated by citrus notes, grapefruit and orange zest, there were hints of crystal malt in the background along with some wood. Tart, tart, tart but refreshing. The acidity was very high which made sense given the flavors but definitely took away from its drinkability. The mouthfeel was ok but slick no doubt due to the varieties of citrus-inducing hops, the body medium and the carbonation the same.

Photo of Popkas
4.7/5  rDev +6.1%
look: 4.5 | smell: 4.5 | taste: 5 | feel: 4.5 | overall: 4.5

Batch: E!018

A: Pours a shiny light golden hue with a foamy top with tons of lacing. Very nice.

S: A heavy barnyard must melded with nice citrusy notes.

T: Nice complex taste that runs from a biting citrus front then the middle and back is almost perfectly sour. Just on the cusp of puckering making this extremely drinkable.

M: Light and everevescent.

D: See "T".

Photo of Jmoore50
4.37/5  rDev -1.4%
look: 3.5 | smell: 4 | taste: 4.5 | feel: 4 | overall: 5

Batch E!018

The appearance is yellow with a one finger crisp white head. The carbonation is strong enough to kill the head and produce a coca cola like fizz. No lacing.

The smell is good, lemon tart and grass. Does not smell sour, just really sweet and a bit tart.

I was really blown away with how tasty this thing was. It is not very complex, it is a very drinkable Wild. There is a huge lemony tart aspect that is the main flavor. There is a bit of oak, some peach skins, orange or citrus rind, and a bit of gym sock sourness. This is really tasty.

The mouthfeel is good, but not sour and acidic. I like them offensive and brutal, but this one is fun. I finished the bottle fairly fast. I am very glad this one turned out to be a winner.

J

Brute from Ithaca Beer Company
98 out of 100 based on 823 ratings.