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Luciérnaga, The Firefly - Jolly Pumpkin Artisan Ales

Not Rated.
Luciérnaga, The FireflyLuciérnaga, The Firefly

Displayed for educational use only; do not reuse.
BA SCORE
91
outstanding

839 Ratings
THE BROS
-
no score

(send 'em beer!)
Ratings: 839
Reviews: 372
rAvg: 4.04
pDev: 10.64%
Wants: 61
Gots: 84 | FT: 7
Brewed by:
Jolly Pumpkin Artisan Ales visit their website
Michigan, United States

Style | ABV
Belgian Pale Ale |  6.50% ABV

Availability: Summer

Notes/Commercial Description:
June

(Beer added by: putnam on 10-28-2004)
Beer: Ratings & Reviews
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Ratings: 839 | Reviews: 372 | Display Reviews Only:
Photo of kojevergas
3.5/5  rDev -13.4%
look: 3.5 | smell: 3.5 | taste: 3.5 | feel: 3.5 | overall: 3.5

1 pint 9.4 fl oz brown glass bottle with great label art and an unbranded green pry-off pressure cap purchased at a local H-E-B grocery and served cold into a Cantillon geuze glass in me gaff in low altitude Austin, TX.

Reviewed live as a pale ale per the label. 6.5% ABV. Expectations are high given the brewery, which makes some beers I've really enjoyed in the past. Distributed by the Shelton Bastards.

Upon opening, foam makes a bid for the top, mushrooming out. Pour quickly.

No bubble show forms as it's poured.

HEAD: Two fingers wide. Off-white colour. Thin and somewhat weak. Not as full or soft as would be ideal. Has a wanting consistency and a mediocre complexion. Recedes fully within 4-5 minutes, leaving no lacing.

BODY: Translucent transparent pale copper with honey and orange hues. Above average vibrance. Glows when backlit. Clean; no yeast particulate or hop sediment is visible.

The constantly erupting foam indicates overcarbonation, but also bottle conditioning. I consider it a good thing.

This looks as a Belgian pale should, but the head could be improved and some healthy yeast particulate wouldn't be unwelcome.

AROMA: Has a definite barnyard character, including subtle biscuity Belgian yeast replete with some subtly handled spices - allspice, coriander, and clove, mainly. Green apple. White pepper. Yeasty funkiness. Grains of Paradise. Hay/straw. Belgian golden malts.

The hop profile is primarily floral, with some apt grassy notes in there too that suit the funky Belgian vibe quite well.

Neutral Belgian pale malts provide the simple malt backbone of the brew.

Boasts a white oak barrel character which seems to coax out further nuances from the base beer. The oak sugars are lovely.

No overt alcohol or other off-notes are detectable.

Overall, this is an enchanting aroma which suggests a very complex and subtle brew. I can't wait for the first sip. Mild in strength.

TASTE: The dampened woody notes suit the base beer nicely, bringing barrel sugars and hints of white oak to lend cohesion to the funky flavour profile. The second act is rich with intricacy, boasting varied notes of spices (allspice, white pepper, coriander, Grains of Paradise) over a golden and Belgian pale malt backdrop. Hints of crackery malts and bready malts here and there. The spicy biscuity yeast lends both funkiness and edge, giving the brew a prominent lively Belgian feel.

Green apple. Hints of vague fruits. Barnyard notes of hay and straw, with some farmhouse must.

The hop profile is ideal for the style, lending subtle notes of floral hops and grassiness without intruding on the star of the show - the yeast.

As it comes to temp, more subsidiary notes of lime and sea salt emerge.

Good depth and duration of flavour, with notable amplitude and above average flavour intensity.

It's quite well balanced, juggling its many constituent notes well while still maintaining a natural cohesion. As a result, it feels like a gestalt whole. There's plenty of intricacy and nuance here to please the discerning drinker. Really a lovely brew in its style.

The finish is lovely, smacking a bit of lactic character and leaving the drinker with the ripe green apple in the aftertaste.

TEXTURE: Light-bodied, refreshing, smooth, soft, and wet. It's a biteen too thick.

Not oily, gushed, hot, boozy, astringent, rough, or scratchy. Above average acidity.

Overall presence on the palate is good, but not great. This texture doesn't quite elevate the beer beyond the taste, but it's a fine companion to the flavour profile and complements it well.

OVERALL: A nice farmhouse Belgian pale from Jolly Pumpkin, Luciernaga is well worth trying once, but its high price point will deter even the discerning drinker from frequent repurchases. I'd recommend any fan of the style give it a pull at least once, but it's not on par with world-class offerings in the style. I'll enjoy finishing the bottle. More solid work from an oft-underrespected brewery.

High B-

This would develop nicely with some light (~1 year) aging.

kojevergas, Oct 23, 2014
Photo of thelagerheads
4.9/5  rDev +21.3%
look: 5 | smell: 5 | taste: 5 | feel: 5 | overall: 4.5

Omigod Ommegang! This reminds me of the Three Philosophers but with an elevated alcohol content and spice feelers I soon forget about that unfortunate wine-beer and direct myself towards the spiritual. Of ascending church steeples and descending bodies in genuflecting waves going up-down up-down. Some bedraggled saint has his face pressed against the stain glass crying knowing that the earth will never suffer as it has sewn. And so being a lit fool is said to be the worst way to review a beer but I disagree. As one should write as close to unconsciousness as is possible to write in a dream-state so should he think about spirits. Ghosts and yeasty succulence flitter away. So comes bliss.

thelagerheads, Aug 11, 2006
Photo of Sammy
4.05/5  rDev +0.2%
look: 4 | smell: 4 | taste: 4 | feel: 3.5 | overall: 4.5

An Americanized barnyard seasonal. Barnyard and maltiness and spices aroma. Lots of head all the time. Very drinkable. Grainy medium mouthfeel, with a bit of bitter astringent sourness in mid-sip. Got more malt than spices, some pepper, vanilla, lemon,coriander, apple . Thanks Dr. Jay

Sammy, Mar 05, 2006
Photo of BuckeyeNation
3.68/5  rDev -8.9%
look: 4 | smell: 4 | taste: 3.5 | feel: 4 | overall: 3.5

Luminous, yeastiful, pumpkin orange beneath a beautiful looking head of lightly orange-tinted alabaster. The cap is large thanks to the generous carbonation and is tacky enough to result in a rough-hewn, pitted surface and a good bit of clingy lace. A wonderful appearance.

Firefly's nose is orchard fruity with a dusting of herbs (coriander) and spices (grains of paradise). I certainly couldn't have been that specific had I not seen the brewery's website. The nose is appealing, but it does suffer somewhat in comparison to authentic Belgian pales. It's more simple and direct than it is deep and complex.

Like the nose, the flavor doesn't quite measure up to the best of its Continental counterparts. Now that that's out of the way, I can judge it for what it is rather than what it isn't. The beer is still peach and pear fruity, although it's fruit that has seemingly had the majority of its sugar removed. That gives it an austere, dessicated character rather than a warm, welcoming one.

Grains of paradise (a little too prominent) are much more noticeable than coriander (not quite prominent enough). More depth and complexity is sorely needed and at least a pinch of candi sugar would do wonders. In addition, alcohol plays too much of a role in the flavor profile; hard to believe at only 6.5%. The beer tastes somewhat medicinal as a result.

I was hoping that the ethanol would fade on the finish, allowing the fruit and spice to shine, but no such luck. The mouthfeel is light-medium with a supple silkiness that I'm enjoying. The beer doesn't feel quite as carbonated as it looks, but it's still on the lively side.

Luciernaga falls short of its intended style target. That isn't to say, however, that it isn't worth a purchase. I found enough to like in this bottle to make me rue its faults all the more and to wonder what could have been. Although Firefly doesn't light up the night, it does give off a pleasant little glow. Thanks to deejaydan for the bottle.

BuckeyeNation, Jun 18, 2005
Photo of archero
3.75/5  rDev -7.2%

archero, Thursday at 05:17 AM
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4/5  rDev -1%

JoeMans, Nov 11, 2014
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4/5  rDev -1%

DangerDawg, Nov 09, 2014
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4.55/5  rDev +12.6%

jscheuf, Nov 09, 2014
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4.5/5  rDev +11.4%

RavenForBeer, Nov 08, 2014
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4.25/5  rDev +5.2%

ArsMoriendiOU818, Nov 07, 2014
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2.75/5  rDev -31.9%

dannyfayy, Nov 07, 2014
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4.25/5  rDev +5.2%

jwat, Nov 07, 2014
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4.25/5  rDev +5.2%

dannymo24, Nov 07, 2014
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4.25/5  rDev +5.2%

mctizzz, Nov 05, 2014
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3.25/5  rDev -19.6%

ridgeline23, Nov 04, 2014
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4.12/5  rDev +2%

BrAdequate, Nov 02, 2014
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4/5  rDev -1%

dmorgan310, Oct 31, 2014
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4.4/5  rDev +8.9%

mariojuan, Oct 30, 2014
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4/5  rDev -1%

Kram3r, Oct 25, 2014
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4/5  rDev -1%

JackNip, Oct 25, 2014
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4/5  rDev -1%

BeerBeast, Oct 19, 2014
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4.25/5  rDev +5.2%

eball33, Oct 19, 2014
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3/5  rDev -25.7%

TubaDan, Oct 19, 2014
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Luciérnaga, The Firefly from Jolly Pumpkin Artisan Ales
91 out of 100 based on 839 ratings.