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Prickly Pear Braggot (Brothers' Reserve Series) - Widmer Brothers Brewing Company

Not Rated.
Prickly Pear Braggot (Brothers' Reserve Series)Prickly Pear Braggot (Brothers' Reserve Series)

Displayed for educational use only; do not reuse.
BA SCORE
82
good

167 Ratings
THE BROS
89
very good

(view ratings)
Ratings: 167
Reviews: 134
rAvg: 3.6
pDev: 15.83%
Wants: 11
Gots: 11 | FT: 0
Brewed by:
Widmer Brothers Brewing Company visit their website
Oregon, United States

Style | ABV
Braggot |  10.00% ABV

Availability: Limited (brewed once)

Notes/Commercial Description:
This beer is retired; no longer brewed.

Malts - Pale
Hops - Alchemy
ABV: 10%
IBU: 20
OG: 23 P

Released April 2010

(Beer added by: jdense on 04-05-2010)
Beer: Ratings & Reviews
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Ratings: 167 | Reviews: 134 | Display Reviews Only:
Reviews by jboucher:
Photo of jboucher
3.7/5  rDev +2.8%

22 oz. bottle poured into a pint glass

Brewed on March 11, 2010

Appearance: Clear amber hue with a small half finger white head. Moderate retention and very light lacing. There is abundant initial carbonation, which shortly fizzles down.

Smell: Malty honey, with the slightest hint of milk chocolate blending in with the honey. The pear juice is made apparent. Slight biscuit-esque note. Solid malt backbone. Definitely on the sweet side.

Taste: Honeyed malt upon the arrival. Slightly sweet and oily. Lingering finish. Fairly complex. The alcohol is masked beautifully.

Mouthfeel: Medium bodied with moderate carbonation, which settles down after the initial pour. Drying effect on the finish.

Ending notes: Overall, this beer was very interesting. Makes a good sipping beer. Definitely not sessionable. Very enjoyable, but I would be seeking this again anytime soon. It was better than I expected.

jboucher, Apr 18, 2011
More User Reviews:
Photo of lordofthewiens
3.38/5  rDev -6.1%

This beer was a gold color with virtually no head. It had a sweet aroma. Taste improved slightly, with some honey and a tiny hint of hops. It had a kind of peppery mouthfeel. Alcohol was well-hidden, not that it would have made any difference to me, because I won't buy this again. My benchmark braggot is Killer Bee from the Portsmouth Brewery.

lordofthewiens, Apr 21, 2010
Photo of Beaver13
2.45/5  rDev -31.9%

22 oz bottle. Pours a clear yellow gold with a thin white head that quickly diminishes to a thin film that leaves a little lacing.

The aroma is subdued - wheaty malts, honey and some fruit.

The flavor is sweet honey and some alcoholic fruits with a medicinal aftertaste. The mouthfeel is medium bodied with light carbonation.

Overall, it's not bad, but it's a bit subdued and I don't really care for some of the harsher medicinal alcohol notes.

Beaver13, Aug 23, 2010
Photo of generallee
3.75/5  rDev +4.2%

generallee, Sep 02, 2012
Photo of Jason
3.95/5  rDev +9.7%

22oz brown bomber with a release date on the label.

Wispy white lace is good for the style, clarity dons a bright golden color. Clean aroma with hints of honey and tropical fruit, clean alcohol vapor as well. Smooth and slick with some body, nutty bready malt meets a growing alcohol honey warmth. Fruitiness and a hint of white chocolate are in the middle. Hops are minimal, perhaps some bitterness comes through but is probably not even needed as the alcohol draws enough balance. Semi-sweet finish.

More refined than most braggots I have had which is not many aside from homebrewed. Good sipping and something I could see ending the night with if not taking my time with over a big meal.

Jason, May 17, 2010
Photo of Mora2000
3.78/5  rDev +5%

The beer pours a clear slightly orange-yellow color with a tiny white head. The aroma is fruity. I guess that is the prickly pear but I am not sure. The flavor is honey and the same fruit from the aroma. The alcohol is present as well and I get something else that I believe is wheat. Medium mouthfeel and medium carbonation. I think this beer could have been better if they would have toned down the alcohol just a little bit.

Mora2000, May 22, 2010
Photo of mondegreen
4/5  rDev +11.1%

22oz into DFH Signature Glass.

Pours a clear dark gold color. Smells sweet, the honey really shines through. Taste is all malt sweetness, almost like a light barleywine. One dimensional, but enjoyable. Maybe a touh of the "prickly pear" juice in the aftertaste. Nicely carbonated and finishes relatively clean. Pretty good brew.

mondegreen, Sep 11, 2010
Photo of Metalmonk
4.03/5  rDev +11.9%

A hearty "hiya" and "hell yes" to msubulldog25 for sending this oddity my way.

Pours a head that's crackly and looks like small soap-bubbles; it disappears rather quickly, giving this a pretty tepid appearance. Color is a golden/orange/peach of nice clarity, pretty much the color you'd expect from a beer brewed with honey and prickly pear juice.

Aroma is orange taffy, honey, peach schnapps; strong vapor of alcohol comes off just a bit too aggressive, and it's the reason I wouldn't give this a higher rating, because I like the candy-like fruit thing going on otherwise.

Flavor-wise I think this totally does what it sets out to do. While the alcohol is a major presence, it's balanced by the sweetness, which is thankfully just kept in check. Some spicy and herbal flickers, but they stay in the background. The honey/pear characteristics are very much embedded in this candy-like, almost liqueur-like ale, and somehow it doesn't come off as too sweet, too alcoholic, or both. Not too far away from a wheat wine, actually.

Juicy, juicy, juicy, with appropriately prickly carbonation...yet it's the slick, round, juicy aspect that wins. Texturally quite wonderful.

So, yeah, I really dig this, I think it's got balance, even if it's precarious at times with all that alcohol and sweetness. And because of its strength and sweet-tooth-only appeal, I guess it's not the most drinkable beer on earth. But a unique one that I'll savor, as this is likely the only bottle I'll ever see in this lifetime. Thanks again, Brian!

Metalmonk, Jul 27, 2010
Photo of Sammy
3.08/5  rDev -14.4%

Drinkable only because of the honey sweetness. Honey and lager aroma. Slight yellw body, lacey. Baking soda in taste, light bodied, kiss of honey in every sip. Not great as a mead, and not as tasty as other braggots. A tad of off-note fruit juice.Thanks Trevor.

Sammy, May 13, 2011
Photo of ElGordo
3.55/5  rDev -1.4%

The second in the Brothers' Reserve series, which is turning out to be an interesting (if not perfectly executed) lineup of one-off brews. Presented in a 22oz bottle inside a nifty-looking brown cardboard box.
Poured from the bottle into a Maudite snifter. Body is bright and clear, somewhere between copper and golden. Very light carbonation gives a flourish like a hard cider on the pour, then settles down to almost completely still. Aroma is a fairly dry sweetness with a hint of mustiness. Notes of honey and golden raisins, along with a faint whiff of citrusy hops.
Palate is heavy with sweetness throughout. Honey and light fruit (I guess the prickly pear) come through up front, with golden raisins and pale malt popping up towards the swallow, along with some mild citrus from the hops. Some spicier notes on the finish remind me of a Belgian tripel.
The body is full and fairly thick, but not particularly sticky. It's not completely still, but not exactly lively, either. Finish is fairly smooth, with a warming that lasts for a good long while.
A unique beer, for sure. I've had a couple of other braggots, but none brewed with fruit. This is an interesting offering, and while it's not the best thing I've had to drink this week, it may be the best attempt at something new.

ElGordo, Apr 15, 2010
Photo of Clamwacker
4.25/5  rDev +18.1%

This was a new experience for me. I am not a big fan of Widmer; all their beers in the last several years have been too sweet for me. Snowplow was absolutely the thing which has kept me from investigating new Widmer brews... it's just awful in my opinion. A shame, considering it was concocted by a homebrewer.

This is an interesting brew. I rarely dig sweet beers, but the honey and malts present themselves nicely. I do not hate the prickly pear flavor and aroma, but it's not something I will go after again, either. Altogether, the appearance was clear, with less than a finger of head, but the "unique" color described on the box was nothing special.

The smell is enticing. With my glass sitting just within arm's reach I can smell only the honey and prickly pear aromas. It is what draws me in to this brew. When I hold the pilsner glass to my mouth I get a very strong malt aroma with little presence of hops, and a very faint alcohol note.

The flavor is quite sweet, and I was only able to consciously detect alcohol if I deliberately think about its 10% ABV. This is an excellent masking of alcohol using malty flavors.

There are supposedly Alchemy hops in this brew, but their presence appears to be intentionally masked by the malts and adjuncts, which I suppose in this case is quite appropriate.

Having never tasted this style before this example, I'm not familiar with what I should be looking for exactly.

The mouthfeel was not my favorite part. After 2 or 3 sips it seems sort of cloying in its sweetness, and after several sips the resulting burps have a lingering flavor that I don't personally enjoy. It remains cloying, and I still detect no hop balance. This is something I have come to expect from Widmer, though -- they are the exception to the rule of "west coast = hops", and while that has worked out well for a few of their brews, I think they should consider knocking over a hop silo soon.

Overall, drinkability is not what I would expect from a beer that cost me $10 for a 22oz bottle. I would absolutely introduce it to friends if it came down in price. I feel that the spiffy packaging (the bottle itself came in a box) was a little pretentious, and it seems like the Widmer brothers are trying to pretend that this is their own Veuve Cliquot.

While the aroma and initial flavor are fantastic, the gestalt is somewhat less amazing considering the purchase price.

I grabbed Deschutes' 2010 Jubelale but I can't review it until 2011, but next time I spend $10+ on a 22oz bottle I will probably go with a Belgian.

Clamwacker, Apr 15, 2010
Photo of cjgator3
3.53/5  rDev -1.9%

22oz bottle 

A- Pours a golden orangish color with a thin off-white head that quickly reduces into a thin ring of lace around the glass.

S- The aroma is sweet malt, honey and pears with some fruity esters.

T- The taste like the aroma is very fruity with pears, apples, honey and hints of spices with some warmth in the finish from the alcohol.

M- The mouthfeel is medium bodied with a moderate amount of carbonation.

D- Overall, not a bad offering from the Widmer Bros. Not something I would purchase again but it is worth a try.

cjgator3, Sep 13, 2010
Photo of cliff1066
3.75/5  rDev +4.2%

cliff1066, Dec 23, 2012
Photo of gimbi
4.25/5  rDev +18.1%

Pours out with a beautiful golden-orange color. Minimal head, but I wouldn't expect much of a head from a mead based brew.

Noticeably warm on the nose, and very sweet. You can definitely pull the honey out on the first sniff, but the pear adds a dynamic that I don't see in many beers. The rear of the aroma becomes almost flowery.

Very sweet on the tongue. Normally I'll hold this quality against a beer, but Widmer Brothers found a way to make it work. The honey is almost overbearing, but only almost. Malt shines through nicely. I occasionally catch a bit of spice like one would expect from a wheat beer, but this is fleeting and definitively not a primary characteristic.

If you enjoy smoked white wines, you are going to absolutely love the mouth-feel. Reminiscent of an Aussie chardonnay.

Everything about this beer screams, "age me!" It has plenty of gravity and sugar to work with and the foundations are strong enough to last for some time. If you're going to try this at all, buy two and put one away for 9-14 months.

Glad I tried it; would definitely recommend to a friend.

gimbi, May 24, 2010
Photo of ebby82
4.1/5  rDev +13.9%

Pours a honey colored hue into a pint glass. There is pretty much no head.

The aroma is honey, pear, a bit of white grape, and pretty much no hop presence.

The taste is again honey, a light presence of pear, and a bit of a wine like flavor. There is a slightly alcoholic aftertaste.

It's rather thick and alcoholic to be highly drinkable, but it's a very enjoyable beer if you like sweet, fruity drinks of any sort.

ebby82, Jan 07, 2011
Photo of silver0rlead
3.93/5  rDev +9.2%

Pours a deep golden color with a thin white head, the head/retention isn't great but that was never a strong suit of braggots. The aroma is really intriguing, with some honey sweetness upfront, an exotic fruitiness (i guess prickly pear, but also papaya or passionfruit), some toffee, biscuit, esters, and a trace of alcohol. The flavor also has a huge sweetness upfront that is reminiscent of honey and toffee, along with a little hops bite (mostly floral and mineraly), some fruitiness (hard to tell if this is esters or the pear juice) that recalls pears and starfruit, a little biscuit and bread, and a hint of alcohol. The mouthfeel is full and thick, bordering on syrupy, and drinkability is incredible given the strength. An intriguing braggot for sure, not too sweet and has a decent amount of complexity and almost no alcohol presence.

silver0rlead, May 18, 2010
Photo of Ralphs66
4/5  rDev +11.1%

Ralphs66, Nov 25, 2011
Photo of Glibber
4/5  rDev +11.1%

Glibber, Oct 06, 2012
Photo of HalfFull
3.83/5  rDev +6.4%

Pours a clear honey golden from a 22 oz. bomber and offers a light foam cap. Carbonation is appropriately light yet offers some artsy lacing on a wine glass.

Light citric malt nose along with a rather subdued honey character. Touch of spice and a hint of alcohol as well as some light noble hop notes and more so with agitation.

Taste is light and flavorful and somewhat vinous in nature. Orange spice with a subtle coarseness, a light sweetness emanates and covers the ABV astonishingly well. Prickly Pear? Well, I'm not too sure what that tastes like, but there is a nice balance here.

An unfamiliar style, this brew drinks quite easily for its potency.

HalfFull, May 18, 2010
Photo of thagr81us
2.28/5  rDev -36.7%

Served from bottle into McChouffe goblet. Pours golden with a minimal white head. Lacing was nice decent throughout. The aroma was comprised of pear, alcohol, and malt with a hint of honey. The flavor was of malt, fruit, and alcohol. It had a medium feel on the palate with high carbonation. Overall this was my first tasting of this style so I didn't really know what to expect at all. I just hope others in this style taste better than this one unfortunately. The flavors were very harsh and didn't seem to blend well together in my opinion. It could probably use a little more sweet malt to help balance out the fruit bitterness and make it more enjoyable.

thagr81us, Jul 09, 2010
Photo of WestValleyIPA
3.93/5  rDev +9.2%

Poured into my Zatec fluted glass. A glorious golden color, with very little head. Smells of honey and very floral. A light citrus hop scent. Tastes vaguely reminiscent of Dogfish Head Midas Touch. Honey, apples, and alcohol are prevalent. I don't necessarily taste the prickly pear. The 10% shows. Finishes lightly bitter. Very little carbonation. Split the 22 oz bottle with my girlfriend, and don't know if I could have finished the whole thing by myself.

WestValleyIPA, Apr 10, 2010
Photo of Docer
3.55/5  rDev -1.4%

Snagged 2 bottles.... 1 to sit on for a long time.

- Clear copper... clear as a bell. Quick fizzy almost sparkling wine-like head... with only a scattered dusting left on top of a rather still liquid. The thinnest ring on the edge.

- Kind of a boozy and rough honey... with a bright sweetness and fruity pear which is certainly present. Almost like a candy or apple jolly rancher. Very unique.

- Actually a smooth and super sweet thin honey nectar with a not so sour pear... that has a sour-like flavor... if that makes any sense. Almost a floral perfume...

- Little sweet and sticky... chewy.. and slightly drying... medium bodied.

- Overall this is very smooth, and the booziness shows at the end... I bet this could sit and really transform... But overall it is a bit too perfume-like and rough at this point. Little too candy like... although I don't know if it couldn't be with the style and ingredient selection...

Docer, Apr 14, 2010
Photo of BeerFMAndy
3.6/5  rDev 0%

22 oz bottle poured into a Sierra Nevada imperial pint. Limited Release #2 Spring 2010. 10% ABV, *Check box* Rob Widmer favorite (should it be both of theirs as it's a BROTHERS' reserve series? Bad marketing) MAR1110 printed on the neck.

Thanks go out to Sweemzander for the hookup on this brew!

A - A tall pour leaves the crystal clear golden braggot with just about a two-finger head. The cloud-white foam had a low retention as it descended but left foamy lave and a thin film on the beer. Inviting appearance overall.

S - Raw honey aroma just oozes from this beer with a fruity pear-like sweetness in tandem. I've never had the prickly pear fruit to my knowledge but I do get a little scent of that crisp pear sweetness in there. Not as mead-like in aroma as I had hoped/expected. The "beer" in it really shines through too much. Pale and Pilsner malts with a bit of grain on the back end. No hop presence at all.

T - Honey really stands out in the flavor as it imparts a rich sweetness and real raw honey taste. Prickly Pear comes across in the flavor, I imagine (since I can't recall ever having it), as a sweet but crisp fruity presence much like an apple or pear would impart. A small splash of thin solvent alcohol pokes it's head out slight on the finish just to let you know it really is there. All the honey and prickly pear notes blend well together but are hindered by the ingredients of the beer itself. It tastes like a grainy, pale malt backing with little thought before execution. The good side and poorer sides of this beer meet in the middle.

M - Smooth and medium in body, Prickly Pear goes down with a prickly carbonation bite. The sweetness goes unchecked but is balanced out in strength so that it's not cloying. An otherwise good mouthfeel is held back by a lingering metallic touch on the finish.

D - Hints of alcohol poke out but it's felt more in sensation while exhaling and towards the end of the last pint (2.5 hours later) but otherwise this beer has very good drinkability. By this sentence my first pint is almost gone. The actual beer side of this Braggot could use some work to bring up in quality though.

BeerFMAndy, May 16, 2010
Photo of vandemonian
3.45/5  rDev -4.2%

Widmer Brothers Prickly Pear Braggot is a sweet and alcoholic braggot with a grassy vegetable flavour.

A: Orange colour and a 1 cm head that fades quickly. 3.5

S: The smell is grassy with a hint of alcohol. 3.5

T: Honey flavour a hint of vegetable grassiness. The aftertaste has the same grassiness but with more alcohol. 3.5

M: Pretty flat. 3

O: Decent enough. 3.5

vandemonian, Jun 10, 2011
Photo of gregshead
3.23/5  rDev -10.3%

Reviewed on 1/30/11 from notes:

A: Golden color with little to no head.

S: Sugary tangerine (the prickly pear maybe?) dominates the smell. Some spices in the background.

T: Very sweet. Prickly pear taste stand out. Some spice again lingering in the background.

M: Good carbonation feel but the syrupyness is evident in the aftertaste.

D: While I enjoyed my pint of this, I'm glad my wife was there to drink the rest. A little too sryupy/boozy for my taste buds.

gregshead, Feb 14, 2011
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Prickly Pear Braggot (Brothers' Reserve Series) from Widmer Brothers Brewing Company
82 out of 100 based on 167 ratings.