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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: 1,109
Gots: 143 | 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
Photo of chippo33
4.5/5  rDev +1.6%

Photo of johnnnniee
4.5/5  rDev +1.6%
look: 4 | smell: 4 | taste: 5 | feel: 4 | overall: 4.5

Batch E! 018
Brought this back from the brewery on a recent NY trip.
Pours a slightly hazy golden straw color with a huge fluffy white head that sticks around forever. Aroma is fruity and funky and phenolic mmm mmm mmm. Light citrus, strawberry, and raspberry aromas being bullied about by some barnyard funk. The taste is lemony sour at first then you get some of the passion fruit, sour cherries, and tart acidic raspberries. Lemons and sour green apples kick in before the dryness moves in and leaves a lingering sour patch kids taste on your palette. Carbonation is crisp, medium body, puckering mouthfeel. Wow this is good! Makes me wish I hadn't traded two of these away.

Photo of liamt07
4.08/5  rDev -7.9%
look: 4.5 | smell: 4 | taste: 4 | feel: 4.5 | overall: 4

750ml bottle shared by Sammy, 2011 vintage - batch E!037. Into a tulip.

Hazy gold with a brilliant bubbly white head. Good retention and light lacing. Nose of tart apple, champagne yeast, a bit of sourness, lemon, a bit of funk and general fruitiness. Tastes quite tart, some lemon, a bit funky and yeast notes again. Effervescent mouthfeel, champagne yeast stands out. Tart, medium body, and no alcohol. A very drinkable brut, but not the best I've had in the style. Still very well done.

Photo of beertunes
4.5/5  rDev +1.6%

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

On tap at NotF, had me a few glasses of this gem. Need to get some bottles.

Pours a cloudy yellow, almost a honey colour, thin white head forms, settles down to a solid ring, no real lacing.

Smell is amazing, very sour and funky, lots of lemon, charred wood, vanilla, oak, apricots and light fruit, good malty middle, lots of acidity.

Taste is great too, a bit of a weird and hard to place fruity sourness, lemons, wood, big and malty funky middle, light on the acidity but very sour in the finish.

Mouthfeel is light to medium bodied with medium carbonation. One of the more drinkable sours, tons of character and funk but quite drinkable.

Photo of Beerandraiderfan
4.53/5  rDev +2.3%
look: 5 | smell: 4.5 | taste: 4.5 | feel: 4.5 | overall: 4.5

Pours out a nice darker chardonnayish champagney looking beer. Really pretty. Aroma revealed more of the same aroma aspects from a white wine, but also some virgin oak I would guess with the clean brett existence (not so much funkitude up in this one).

Taste, beautiful, clean, sour. Very similar to The Vine from Cascade, this one is a little more sessionable and less sour, relying on brett more than the aforementioned, which I believe divies up its sourness between a variety of bugs. Acidity kept in check, I don't really care about that one, acidic or not, a beer is not good based upon that factor in my book. Fruit existence is low, might be something like green apple, maybe some light citrus like lemon, but that's about it, definitely no dark fruit. Carbonation was perfect.

I brought this one to the sour share in Reno last month.

Photo of HuskyinPDX
4.55/5  rDev +2.7%
look: 4 | smell: 4 | taste: 5 | feel: 4.5 | overall: 4.5

Batch # E!037

750ml bottle poured into a Deschutes Tulip glass.

A - Pours a golden, straw color with a huge off-white head. Great retention.

S - Belgian yeast, spice, green apples.

T - Champagne like, apples, slight funk.

D - Belgian tartness, tons of carbonation with a light body.

O - Delicious, light and airy.

Photo of Duff27
4.24/5  rDev -4.3%
look: 3.75 | smell: 4 | taste: 4.25 | feel: 4.5 | overall: 4.5

2008 vintage.

Inch tall off white head, fizzy bubbly head. Body is a dull peach. Cap and collar. Recede after about 4 minutes.

Grapes. Tart peaches, champagne yeast influenced.

More with the sour grapes with a funk presence this time. Beneath all of this there is a balancing sweetness about it.

Very lively bubble mouthfeel and carbonation level. Unique and perhaps my favorite aspect of Brute.

A solid, well built sour. Balanced with a great lively mouthfeel and carbonation. Thanks kawilliams81 for the long time want share! Thanks Kent.

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

2010 vintage. This bottle was courtesy of thagr81us in a massive trade a few months back. Thanks for hitting this HUGE want of mine Calton!

This beer pours a very cloudy and medium bodied tangerine orange in color with a two finger and beady head. This beer appears to have a lot of activity. It has a really nice nose. You get citrusy tartness, funk, brett, chapagne yeast, chardonnay barrel, and a white grape like fruitness. The flavors feature a nice tart white grape aspect, funk, brett, citrus peels, brett, and it finishes really smooth. This beer has insane drinkability for the style. It has the perfect level of tartness and is mouthwatering. I expected a lot from this beer and it delivered and then some. This beer is somewhat comparable to Temptation for me and I loved it. I'll have to track down a few more bottles.

Photo of kscaldef
4.03/5  rDev -9%
look: 4.5 | smell: 4 | taste: 4 | feel: 4 | overall: 4

2010 Vintage

A: Huge frothy head.

S: Lemon and funky barnyard aromas

T: Good pure sour with moderate tartness and slight sweetness.

M: High carbonation and a long linger

O: Not the most complex sour, but clean, tasty, and refreshing. Somewhat gueuze-like.

Photo of Gobzilla
4.21/5  rDev -5%
look: 4 | smell: 4.25 | taste: 4.25 | feel: 4 | overall: 4.25

A: poured a bubbly golden yellow in color with pale yellow highlights and a thin bubbly head that left slight wisps of lacing sticking to the glass.

S: plenty of funky brett was noticeable upfront on the nose with great citrusy notes, oaky wood character, mild vinegar coming through and slight vinous fruit.

5. The funky brett character was more apparent on the palate alongside some citrusy twang, very nice oaky barrel accents, champagney bubbly dry flavor accompanied by vinous fruit notes and a touch of vanilla.

M: the brew was medium in body with a good amount of bubbly carbonation which had a sweet, bretty funky, oaky, citrusy, mild vinous tart and dry finish.

O: thought it was a solid brew all around and the yeast definitely brought out champange characteristics.

Photo of drummermattie02
4.5/5  rDev +1.6%

Photo of Bitterbill
4.83/5  rDev +9%
look: 5 | smell: 4.5 | taste: 5 | feel: 4.5 | overall: 5

I received 2 bottles in trade thanks to NutBrown and joe1510. Thanks Alan and Joe!

Served near room temp, maybe I should have chilled it down a bit as I lost an ounce or 2 when I popped the cork.

A hazy straw colour with a huge head of foam, it does settle down fairly quickly leaving some nice lacing.

One whiff and the influence of the Brett is right there with plenty of notes of wheat and some lemon citrus sourness to back it up. A very nice and inviting nose.

The taste starts off wonderfully sour and that has my complete attention. Smack. Yum. On to the light wheat and light lemon zest bitterness to go with the sour and a light dash of an oaky flavour. If you really want to taste how sour this is, try swishing the beer in your mouth. Oh my!

Medium mouthfeel, this is one highly carbonated brew but it works perfectly for me. And....head retention is superb.

Drinkability? I'll have to say....I could drink this all day long! Incredible drinkability because it tastes so damn good and the alcohol is just a number(label says it is 7%abv) and doesn't come into play at all.

Bottom line: I loves me a good American Wild Ale or Sour Ale. Brute is *crazy* good and anyone who appreciates the style must seek this one out. 'nuff said.

Thanks again, Alan and Joe for the opportunity!

Photo of AlexFields
4.25/5  rDev -4.1%

Photo of TurdFurgison
4.18/5  rDev -5.6%
look: 5 | smell: 4.5 | taste: 4 | feel: 4 | overall: 4

Batch # E!010, from Buckeyesox and enjoyed in his memory (you're missed Dev). From the label: "Brewed with vintage local hops, American barley, wheat, and corn, Brute is fermented on oak for many months with Brettanomyces, then finished with a blend of three champagne yeasts".

The beer is hazy, pale yellow color, with about 3+ fingers of white foam that retains for about forever. The aroma is tart and fruity, kind of like white wine but a little sweeter. The taste both meets my expectations and surprises me a little all at once. I expected a sour bite but was unprepared for the bracing tartness with which this beer presents itself. None of the sweetness from the aroma comes through, really this is so sour and puckering that it shocked me. I love this style of beer but this tasted less funky than what you might expect, none of the horseblanket or grass or musty whatnot, just all the sour turned to 11. A strong white wine might be the best descriptor after all, a bit dry and more bitter than sweet. Or maybe not bitter at all, just acidic.

Despite those descriptions this is really very good, a nice achievement in brewing. We're at a lucky time in American brewing, many craft breweries are now experimenting with Brett, it wasn't that long ago that you only had some Belgian breweries and maybe Russian River to go to for these flavors. Here's to hoping that even more breweries go for it in the future.

Photo of THECPJ
4.45/5  rDev +0.5%
look: 4.5 | smell: 4.5 | taste: 4.5 | feel: 4 | overall: 4.5

Reviewed from notes 2/25/11

Appearance: Hazy golden yellow, with a finger fluffy white head

Smell: funk, sour

Taste: sour fruits, sweet grapes,

Mouthfeel: mild carbonation, smooth, crisp, well balanced.

Drinkability: Very nice sour. Wish it wasn't so hard to come by.

Cheers,

The CPJ

Photo of eawolff99
5/5  rDev +12.9%

Photo of Haybeerman
4.38/5  rDev -1.1%
look: 4.5 | smell: 4 | taste: 4.5 | feel: 4.5 | overall: 4.5

A: Lightly clouded deep gold color. Poured a coarse white 2 finger head that dissipated quickly to a skim thickened at the edges. Thin, inconsistent lacing. Decanted continually.

S: Sweet, floral and fruity; reminded me of some white wines. There is a deep bread and honey sweetness that dies with a pungent yeast funk.

T: Bread and honey sweetness. Green apple and grape sourness puntuate the middle. Other light-colored fruit flavors come through (like peach, pear) with a subtle sourness as well. Finishes with champagne and a lingering wild yeast funk.

M: Light body. Ample carbonation. Smooth and dry.

D: My personal bias, I like the style in small doses so I would not normally rate it as highly drinkable. That said, its really classic in smell, taste and mouthfeel and a very good beer for the style so I'm rating the 4.5 based on that along with the way IBC did a nice job on the balance.

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 claspada
3.92/5  rDev -11.5%
look: 3.5 | smell: 4 | taste: 4 | feel: 3.5 | overall: 4

Bottle courtesy of fastpass17.

Pours a light golden yellow with crazy amounts of foam and carbonation here. Would have thought is was champagne if I didn't know any better.

Aromas are quite vinous as well. White grapes, tart green apples. In the background there is a little mustiness and light citrus fruits.

Tastes begin with a lot of tart green apples and apple skin. Slightly earthy and musty from the Brett and also maybe the wheat malt. I also get some more white wine vinous notes and lemon rind in the sweet yet dry finish.

The mouthfeel is light and dry and crisp on the palate, just like a champagne. Plenty of carbonation in this brew, makes it kind of hard to drink which is my only major issue with this beer.

Overall I enjoyed this beer. While it is not my favorite style it was still quite enjoyable. It's one of those beers that drinks so dry/tart that it makes you sip more and the process is repeated, which I find dangerous because the glass is empty before you know it, such is life.

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

250TH REVIEW

750mL bottle poured into wine glass - batch E!027

Pours a slightly hazed apricot yellow with some darker orange tones. A frothy white head bubbles up quickly, then slowly retreats into some well retained film creating a collar around the glass.

Plenty of tart sourness in the nose with lemon, citrus zest, green apple peel and a touch of grain.

A blast of fruit tartness up front with pears and green apples. Citric qualities add to the overall sour profile, which is actually less puckering than the nose suggests. The beer avoids becoming lactic or acidic with some soft sweetness driven by apricot and pear. Dry sourness rides through towards the finish with bubbly warmth.

Medium body, full bubbly carbonation. Very dry around the edges and lingers on the palate similar. I've had sours before that reminded me of champagne, but Brute really put the yeast to work with some amazing results. The alcohol is smoothed out, and the slightly milder sourness makes this incredibly easy to drink.

Photo of smithj4
4.5/5  rDev +1.6%

Photo of BeerFMAndy
4.97/5  rDev +12.2%
look: 4.5 | smell: 5 | taste: 5 | feel: 5 | overall: 5

750 ml bottle split and poured into a Sierra Nevada tulip. 7% ABV, Batch # E!010, tulip pictured on the glass, <40°, keep cool and serve chilled, contents under pressure, open with caution, point away from people.

Big thanks to Beerwolf77 sharing this amazing brew. It's fairly low on the top 100 but we all loved it!

A - Crystal clear golden yellow in color with a massive white head. Low retention from the lactic acid in this brew, but some awesome little fingers of lace creep up the glass.

S - Orgasmic aroma of lactic wild brett notes. Gorgeous horse blanket and barnyard funk just escapes out of this beer with power. Crystal malts add just a tiny touch of sweetness to the amazing aroma. I can't get enough of this smell! White grapes and a hint of champagne make their way in as well.

T - Light pale and crystal malts provide a backbone to the super funky barnyard, horse blanket-laden brew. Light sourness, it has more of a lactic finish. Lemony citrus on the finish blends with notes of champagne white grapes. Complex yet simple at the same time. MMM.

M - So carbonated, I'm surprised it didn't gush actually, it's crisp and light-bodied with a sour finish accompanied by a sharp tickle. Very nice going down. Dry and champagne-like but fantastic.

D - After the gasps and outcries from the aroma, I told the guys it's good I brought a change of diapers for us all cause I figured something like this might happen tonight. But seriously, Todd was right to say, "I should have been greedy with this and not shared it with you guys." I agree. I could polish off a bottle of this alone. I need to find me some asap.

Photo of BGsWo22
4.5/5  rDev +1.6%

Photo of enelson
4.5/5  rDev +1.6%

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