Calabaza Boreal - Jolly Pumpkin Artisan Ales

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Calabaza BorealCalabaza Boreal

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355 Ratings
no score

(send 'em beer!)
Ratings: 355
Reviews: 53
rAvg: 4.03
pDev: 10.67%
Wants: 14
Gots: 60 | FT: 4
Brewed by:
Jolly Pumpkin Artisan Ales visit their website
Michigan, United States

Style | ABV
Saison / Farmhouse Ale |  7.00% ABV

Availability: Limited (brewed once)

Notes & Commercial Description:
Beer added by: babaracas on 05-27-2014

This beer is retired; no longer brewed.

Collaboration with Anchorage Brewing Company. Ale brewed with grapefruit peel, juice, and peppercorns. Oak barrel aged and bottled conditioned.
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Ratings: 355 | Reviews: 53
Reviews by StoutHunter:
Photo of StoutHunter
4.15/5  rDev +3%

I picked up a bottle of Jolly Pumpkin's Calabaza Boreal a couple weeks ago for $12.99 at The Lager Mill. I'm a big fan of Jolly Pumpkin and even though I've only had one beer from Anchorage brewing company I'm a fan of them also and it was pretty much a no brainer that I needed to try this beer, so lets see how it goes. Bottled on April 23rd 2014. Poured from a brown 750ml bottle into a Jolly Pumpkin snifter.

A- The label looks really nice, it's got a great look to it that kinda incorporates both breweries and I think it's pretty eye catching. It poured a nice bright golden yellow color that took on more of a golden amber color with two fingers worth of bubbly white head that died down to a thin ring that stayed till the end and it left some nice spotty and patchy rings of lacing behind. This was a good looking beer, I have no complaints.

S- The aroma starts off with a slightly higher amount of medium sweetness with that signature jolly pumpkin yeast showing up and it imparts that nice funky, barnyard and wet straw like aromas with a little bit of tartness and it's followed by a light amount of spices and earthy hop aromas. Up next comes the grapefruit which shows up just enough and imparts a nice natural grapefruit aroma along with a nice citrus fruit like aroma. This beer had a good aroma, the grapefruit worked well with the yeast.

T= The taste seems to be pretty similar to the aroma and it starts off with a slightly higher amount of medium sweetness with the grapefruit being the first to show up this time and it imparts that same nice natural grapefruit and citrus fruit like aspects that it did in the aroma and it's followed by a light amount of tartness. Up next comes the yeast which impart the same signature jolly pumpkin yeast aspects, but they seem slightly lighter than they were in the aroma. On the finish there's a very low amount of medium bitterness that has a bitter grapefruit like flavor to it that goes right into the aftertaste along with some citrus fruit and funky yeast flavors. I thought this was a good tasting beer, it was really balanced, neither the yeast or the grapefruit seemed to show up the most.

M- Smooth, a little refreshing, fairly crisp, a little dry on the finish, not acidic at all, medium bodied with a medium amount of carbonation. The mouthfeel was good and it worked nicely with this beer, I liked that it was a little refreshing.

Overall I thought this was a good beer and good example of the style, it had most of what I would expect from a Jolly Pumpkin beer and with the addition of the grapefruit made for something like a Jolly Pumpkin version of a Radler, but without being thin and unbalanced. This beer had good drinkability, it was smooth, a little refreshing, fairly crisp, a little dry on the finish, not acidic at all, not filling and the taste good a job of holding my attention, half the bottle is a good amount for me, but I don't think I would have a problem drinking the whole bottle especially on a warm summer day. What I like the most about this beer was the balance, no aspect was too overpowering and they all blended together nicely. What I liked the lest about this beer was nothing, but I do wish it had just a little more tartness in the flavor, but other than that there isn't anything that I would change. I would buy this beer again, I'm not sure how well it would age, but I wouldn't mind drinking a couple more of these before summer is over. I would recommend this beer to any Jolly Pumpkin fan or anybody who likes a nice farmhouse ale. I think this made for a great summer time beer and I hope they bring this beer back next summer. All in all I was happy with this beer and a little impressed by the balance, it turned out to be a good beer and another good collaboration brew. This isn't my favorite of the style or my favorite Jolly Pumpkin beer, but it's still a good beer nonetheless, just not a favorite. Good job guys, this was one tasty beer and it really hit the spot on this warm summer day, keep up the great and innovative work.

More User Reviews:
Photo of BEERchitect
4.1/5  rDev +1.7%
look: 4.25 | smell: 4.25 | taste: 4 | feel: 4.25 | overall: 4

The tangy fruitiness of Anchorage meets the dry pepper taste of Jolly Pumpkin manifests in a Dr. Jekyll/Mr. Hyde kind of wild ale. Two distinct personalities intertwine in one seamless taste for a Belgian-esque farhmouse saison like none else.

The hazy straw ale bursts to life with a funky-fresh upstart. Citrus and tropical aromas and flavors bloom with tangy white grapefruit, under-ripened orange, lemon, dried lime, pineapple and apricot. The fruit flavor is woven together with the mustiness of weathered oak and cork-like pungency.

Over the course of the middle palate, its creamy sherbet-type of tangy sweetness turns zesty, racy and dry as its more spicy side shows. Peppercorn, brine, mild peat damp hay and sod offer an even-keel balance to the early fruit while giving a champagne type of bounce to enhance dryness and drinkability.

Intensifying flavors of peppercorn and moderate acidity chase the flavor into a fully dry finish, laced with echoes of sweat, wood rot, white wine and game. Its a rustic and untamed finish to an introduction that began subtle and refined.

Underneath its rocky, yeast sprinkled column of foam, the ale underneath starts out with the flavors common to Anchorage Brewing but finish with Jolly Pumpkin's undeniable spiciness. Its personality morphs dramatically in its procession across the palate.

Photo of Beaver13
3.69/5  rDev -8.4%
look: 5 | smell: 3.5 | taste: 3.5 | feel: 4.5 | overall: 3.5

750 ml bottle. Pours hazy orange yellow with a medium creamy white head that retains well and laces the glass.

The aroma is brett, sweet tropical fruit and musty, stinky yeast with some pepper.

The flavor is grapefruit and sweet tropical fruit with earthy brett and a peppery bitterness in the finish. The mouthfeel is medium to full bodied with soft carbonation.

Overall, it's interesting with lots of brett and spice. I don't think it all comes together really well. Some of the musty bitterness is a bit much.

Photo of Cheebacheebs
4.33/5  rDev +7.4%
look: 4 | smell: 4.75 | taste: 4.25 | feel: 4 | overall: 4.25

A bit tart, in a good way. A little vanilla from the oak I imagine, and very bitter grapefruit flavor. All in all a very good farmhouse ale.

Photo of tastybeer
4.3/5  rDev +6.7%
look: 4 | smell: 4.5 | taste: 4.25 | feel: 4.25 | overall: 4.25

Pale gold beer, large white head that is very bubbly. Aroma is juicy, sour, tart, floral, hay, wildflowers.... Very nice smelling as a whole. Taste is dryly tart initially then sweet and fruity. White wine, tropical everything, flowers, citrus skins. A very interesting beer and very enjoyable. Grapefruit is definitely there, and it works very well with everything else.

Photo of Hopdaemon39
4/5  rDev -0.7%

Had on tap at Good Beer- pours a clear golden color, finger of head, decent retention and lacing.

Smells funky and mildly sweet.

Tastes great- well balanced between yeasty funk, grapefruit bitterness and malt sweetness.

Medium light bodied and well carbonated. This is a good one- buy it if you can afford it.

Photo of Alieniloquium
3.63/5  rDev -9.9%
look: 4.5 | smell: 4 | taste: 3.5 | feel: 3 | overall: 3.5

750 mL bottle poured into a snifter.

Appearance - Hazy orange body. Nice big white head. Retains very well. Nice chunky collar and a very wispy surface.

Smell - Lots of bright citrus. Intense grapefruit. Some pale malt. Light acidity. Kinda bretty. All over the place, as per Jolly Pumpkin's standard procedure.

Taste - Again, very citrusy up front. Grapefruit and orange. Pale malt. Bretty in the back end, but it's quickly dominated by bitterness.

Mouthfeel - Medium light body. Excessively bitter. Well carbonated.

Overall - The citrus is nice, but man is it bitter.

Photo of crankdatank
4.23/5  rDev +5%
look: 4.5 | smell: 4 | taste: 4.25 | feel: 4.5 | overall: 4.25

On tap at Chucks central district in seattle. Slightly hazy gold thin white head with fine bubbles.
A: sweet orange peel with spice and slight tart.
T: Complex. Citrus fruit, vanilla and spice. Nice dry finish. Earthy with lingering grapefruit.
M: very effervescent, light.
O: very interesting, pretty tart for a saison but tasty and drinkable.

Photo of goochpunch
3.98/5  rDev -1.2%
look: 4 | smell: 4 | taste: 4 | feel: 3.75 | overall: 4

Pours out a hazy gold with a thin head. Smells of brett funk and crackery malt. Taste: dryness, dull bitterness, citrus, tart. Body: medium light body with mild carbonation. Solid and tasty beer. Nothing out of this world.

Photo of emerge077
4.25/5  rDev +5.5%

Third time having this, first time reviewing.
Hazy orange, thin cobwebby lace across the surface. In the light it shows good clarity.

Aroma is funky and citrusy with plenty of wild yeast complexity.

Fruity and juicy at first, becoming dry with a lasting peppercorn bitterness in the aftertaste that lingers for quite awhile. Grapefruit is at the forefront, with a lingering herbal bitterness in the background. Nicely tart and fruity. Overall this was a great collaboration between two breweries that seem to be a natural pair.

Photo of bluejacket74
4.2/5  rDev +4.2%

750 ml bottle, Blend 2, Bottled 04/15/14. Served in a Unibroue tulip, the beer pours a cloudy gold color with about an inch and a half frothy white head that stayed around a very long time. There's also a lot of lacing. The brew smells like straw, peppery spice, grapefruit, citrus peel, white grapes, oak, and earthiness. Taste is similar to the aroma, but there's also some lemon, funk, wheat/grainy malt, white wine and a bit of tropical fruit noticeable. There's a nice tartness that gets stronger as the beer warms. Mouthfeel/body is medium, it's smooth, creamy and easy to drink. There's also a good amount of carbonation. I think it's pretty good, definitely worth a try if you come across a bottle.

Photo of smakawhat
4.42/5  rDev +9.7%
look: 4.5 | smell: 4.25 | taste: 4.5 | feel: 4.25 | overall: 4.5

Poured from the bottle into a tulip glass.

A perfect tangerine solid orange body color, opaque and solid. Head is slightly off white with a yellow cream tinge. Rocky and fluffy with thick clumping of retention and valleys for the head. Chunks just hanging off the glass. Great looking brew.

Real nice nose. A good moderate brett funk action on this, lots of fruit orange and lemon citrus qualities. Some matching floral notes and slightly dry. Pretty solid classic saison. Not getting a distinct grapefruit, but some minimal pepper.

Palate hits with lots of fruit qualities. Grapefruit is more noticeable cause of a huge zesty and oily rind taste. Big oils, with some matching brett, with big oily coating on the finish. Some sweet malts slightly and good juiced up coating on the palate. Not particularly hot or peppery it seems, quite tolerable on that note and easy.

Overall just a great fruity saison, comes out almost like an amped up fruit saison hybrid.

Photo of wedge
4.29/5  rDev +6.5%
look: 4.25 | smell: 4.5 | taste: 4.25 | feel: 4 | overall: 4.25

Slightly hazy gold topped with some amazing looking dense eggshell foam. Smell is funky barrel, floral, and citrus. Brett, straw, pungent flowers, dry wood, peppercorns, and grapefruit (though not nearly as much as I expected). The flavor is where the grapefruit peel breaks free, but it meshes well with the earthy, floral Brett. Peppery citrus rind, apricot, lemon tartness, white wine, and oak. This has that Jolly Pumpkin character all over it. More dusty, rustic funk than grapefruit, which I appreciate. Very dry, lightly acidic, and bordering on too bitter, but otherwise clean and easy drinking. Good stuff...

Photo of Immortale25
4.59/5  rDev +13.9%
look: 4.25 | smell: 4.5 | taste: 4.75 | feel: 4.5 | overall: 4.5

Poured into a Funky Buddha Brewery snifter. Back label says Batch #1 May/2014.

A- Pours a hazy light amber color with a 1/2 inch off-white head that retains well before becoming a thick ring around the edge of the glass and a mostly full sheet of surface foam. Semi-resilient lacing leaves a broken ring behind.

S- Vibrant Brett character with a nice shot of citrus. Slightly sweet and has an earthy quality to it. Super zesty.

T- The citrus notes this beer brings are unparalleled. Melon, peach, pineapple, grapefruit and orange are all there with a mild acidity that brings everything together and makes for an outstanding drink. That little bit of tartness just makes all that bright fruit flavor pop in a way I've never seen before.

M- Moderate tartness with medium carbonation and a lightish body.

O- If you see this beer on a shelf, do not pass it up. An excellent funky saison that will bring a smile to your face.

Photo of dipso123
3.87/5  rDev -4%
look: 4.25 | smell: 4 | taste: 3.75 | feel: 4 | overall: 3.75

I am a fan of Jolly Pumpkin's Oro de Calabaza - which I believe is the base beer for this collaboration - but didn't find the combination of Brett and grapefruit zest appealing in the finish. It struck me a bit like really hoppy brett or sour beers - not a great combination. Saison character very hard to find in this beer. Well made but to my taste not a great idea/recipe.

Photo of papat444
4.12/5  rDev +2.2%
look: 4.25 | smell: 4 | taste: 4.25 | feel: 4 | overall: 4

Thanks to my best bud for picking this up in Chi-town.

Poured from a bomber, bottled 04/23/14.

Pours a nice hazy, bright yellow body. Very low carbonation, bit of white wine but grapefruit really shines, like drinking juice but better :) Really enjoyed this one.

Photo of TheManiacalOne
3.69/5  rDev -8.4%
look: 3.75 | smell: 3.5 | taste: 3.75 | feel: 3.75 | overall: 3.75

On-tap 9/17/2014 at Track 84 in Warwick, RI, served in a goblet glass.

A: The beer is a light gold color, with a short off-white head that fades slowly and leaves a thick lace on the glass.

S: The aroma contains wild Belgian yeast, esters, citrus and pepper.

T: The taste starts out with a sour bite from esters, wild Belgian yeast and grapefruit. Then some complementary spiciness and sweetness come in but they are mild. The malt character is thin and the hops presence is very mild creating a decent balance. The after-taste is sour.

M: Crisp and smooth, medium body, medium carbonation, finish is clean and dry.

O: Tasty, goes down easily, not too filling, decent kick, good sour representation of style, this is a decent beer to drink for a while if you’re in the mood for a sour Saison.

Photo of rand
4.14/5  rDev +2.7%
look: 4.25 | smell: 4 | taste: 4.25 | feel: 4.25 | overall: 4

From 750 mL bottle to Duvel tulip glass

A: Light golden-tan in color, clear with a chilled . A fluffy white head forms immediately but quickly recedes, leaving a healthy layer of lacing.

S: A signature grassy, yeasty funk anchors the bouquet, but it works as a backdrop. The added fruit are showcased well against the farmhouse aromas, adding just a layer of zesty sweetness to round the scents. The nose is bold and easily parsed.

T: The added grapefruit peel is distinct, bouncing right off the funk and yeasty esters. Plenty of lemon-honey sweetness, but oak aging and bittering hops keep things dry and drinkable. Citrus zest and peppery spice are noted throughout the sip, as the brew finishes relatively short and dry.

M: Light and effervescent. Eminently drinkable for a saison.

Had this on tap New Years (a rare treat here in San Diego, Jolly Pumpkin is easily found in bottles but not so much on tap), was really looking forward to a proper review from a bottle. It's hard for me to say anything negative at JP...I like some more than others, but they're always interesting and tasty. No exception here.

Photo of founddrama
3.67/5  rDev -8.9%
look: 3.25 | smell: 4.25 | taste: 3.5 | feel: 3.5 | overall: 3.5

The citrus comes from the grapefruit for sure. The peppercorns come out nicely. Interesting, but I should have just gotten a short pour. Fortunately, it reads like the saison it says on the tin.

Photo of Theseanlewis
4.01/5  rDev -0.5%
look: 4 | smell: 4.25 | taste: 4 | feel: 3.5 | overall: 4

A-gold copper hue. Bright white rad with thin lacing.
A-tropical fruit barnyard funk green apples. Earth
T-citrusy sweet hop followed by a barnyard sour flavor.
M- a little sweeter and rounder than expected but lends itself to the tropical fruit. Could have been a little dryer but did not detract from taste
O-delicious beer that delivers right on the nose what it promises a tropical citrus beer with an earthy funk

Photo of PPOmaha
3.97/5  rDev -1.5%
look: 3.5 | smell: 4 | taste: 4 | feel: 4 | overall: 4

Aroma: Funk is up front: dirt and earth. Medium hop aroma is citrus and sweet tangerine and pineapple. Hints of rubber and plastic. No DMS, No diacetyl.

Appearance: Orange with golden highlights, poured clear for the first half of the bottle but pretty cloudy in the second half of the bottle.

Flavor: Just a hint of biscuity malt not much. Bitterness is medium-high. Hop flavor again is citrus, mostly grapefruit. Not as much funk as the aroma but earth and rubber are there. No DMS, No diacetyl.

Mouthfeel: Medium-light body, with high carbonation. Finish is dry.

Overall: Nice to see what Jolly Pumpkin yeast tastes like with a highly bitter citrus hop bill. Not super amazing, but definitely worth trying for $13. Solid collaboration.

Photo of TreyIsWilson
3.97/5  rDev -1.5%
look: 4 | smell: 3.75 | taste: 4 | feel: 4.25 | overall: 4

A - Pours a hazy gold with a large three-finger foamy white head. Moderate amount of soapy lacing.

S - Aromas of Brett, grapefruit, lemon, pepper, and some faint oak.

T - The taste follows the aroma pretty closely. The taste starts with a light sweetness of orange, grapefruit, and biscuity malts. The sweetness fades into the Brett and Jolly Pumpkin yeast. The finish has some piney hops, pepper, and grapefruit peel producing a nice bitterness.

M - Medium bodied with medium carbonation. Mouthfeel is creamy with a crisp bite. Dry finish.

O - This was an interesting collaboration that straddles the line of and Wild Ale. Good and Definetly worth trying.

Photo of sjccmd
4.28/5  rDev +6.2%
look: 4.5 | smell: 4.5 | taste: 4.25 | feel: 3.75 | overall: 4.25

Pours light orange, slightly murky with a small fluffy white head. The head slides away leaving a very sticky lacing.

Grapefruit mingles with earthy brett funk in the aroma. Bright citrus and berries. Spicy and juicy. A fine crisp basemalt character hiding beneath everything. The aroma is persistent and quite strong throughout the duration of drinking. Distinct aroma of kumquats. It is difficult to tell which aspects of the aroma are coming from the hops versus the grapefruit juice and peel.

Juicy grapefruit upfront. Tons of citrus flavor. A firm hop (or perhaps grapefruit peel) bitterness follows. Spices and warming alcohol. The fruit clears way with a super dry finish. Mild tartness and grapefruit peel linger in the finish.

Slightly low carbonation for what I would expect. Not offensive, but it could be nicer with a touch more. Sticky hop resin and grapefruit peel coat the mouth and linger.

Very complex but drinkable beer. The hops and grapefruit intermingle quite nicely together.

Photo of Tone
4.22/5  rDev +4.7%
look: 3.75 | smell: 4.25 | taste: 4.5 | feel: 3.75 | overall: 4

Pours a clear, gold color. 2/3 inch head of a white color. Great retention and great lacing. Smells of tartness, hint of hop, yeast, slight sour, hint of pale malt, and alcohol. Fits the style of a Belgian Pale Ale. Mouth feel is sharp and crisp, with a high carbonation level. There is also a strong tartness. Tastes of citrus hops, strong yeast, tartness, slight sourness, hint of pale malt, and alcohol. Overall, sweet and tart, but not too dry for a Belgian Pale Ale. Great body, good blend, complex. Another strong beer from Jolly Pumpkin.

Photo of nmann08
4.5/5  rDev +11.7%

On draft, pours a light hazy orange, active carbonation in the glass but not alot of head to go along with this pretty nice looking draft.

The nose is very floral, barnyard funk, some citrus and grapefruit, some hay and straw and a little bit of cheese too. The flavor is honestly delicious. Tart, but not mouth puckering, starts off a little sweet, then transitions to lemongrass, wheat, orange peel, peppercorn and spice. Clean refreshing finish. This is downright delicious.

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Calabaza Boreal from Jolly Pumpkin Artisan Ales
90 out of 100 based on 355 ratings.