Luciérnaga, The Firefly - Jolly Pumpkin Artisan Ales

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Luciérnaga, The FireflyLuciérnaga, The Firefly

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BA SCORE
91
outstanding

382 Reviews
THE BROS
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Reviews: 382
Hads: 906
rAvg: 4.06
pDev: 9.36%
Wants: 64
Gots: 104 | FT: 10
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:
Beer added by: putnam on 10-28-2004

June
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Reviews: 382 | Hads: 906
Photo of vette2006c5r
1.94/5  rDev -52.2%
look: 4.25 | smell: 4 | taste: 1 | feel: 1.25 | overall: 1

The Firefly pours a hazy amber color with a huge lacing and fluffy head. There is a strong spicy aroma with strong hints of Belgian Candies. Taste is the same strong, lots of spices, and lots of Belgian candy flavors but a mess with the sweetness, way way way too sweet. Nice carbonation, good body, but so sweet. Overall I found it one of the worst beers I have ever consumed (or tried to consumed for that matter). I am rather convinced I must have picked up a bad bottle. (474 characters)

Photo of shbobdb
2.31/5  rDev -43.1%
look: 3.5 | smell: 2.5 | taste: 2 | feel: 3 | overall: 2

Eeeewww.


Not a very good beer, not a very good beer at all. I'm OK with using funky microorganisms, but I draw the line at awkward uses of spice and this beer has a lot of it.

The Belgians learned long ago that, aside from fruit, it was very difficult to find anything that would compliment bugs. Sure, there are breweries like De Proef that are breaking that mold . . .

But I know De Proef. De Proef is a friend of mine, and you Jolly Pumpkin, are no De Proef.

The beer starts with a blast of corriander, which is gross. And is followed by muted golden ale tastes (a little bit of grain, a little bit of yeast esters, but nothing too out-of-the-ordinary), followed by the unholy union of 'spicy pepper' and 'vinegar'.

I'm all for micororganisms, but that much acetobacter can only mean a poorly managed brewhouse. Come on JP, I know you want to be traditional, but letting acetobacter get out of control *isn't* traditional, it is a product of American X-TREME beer lovers . . . that's what this beer is. It is X-TREME BUGS!!!

I'll take a well crafted lambic, or anything from De Proef, thank-you-very-much. (1,128 characters)

Photo of Bighuge
2.5/5  rDev -38.4%
look: 3 | smell: 3 | taste: 2.5 | feel: 2 | overall: 2

Appearance: Dirty looking auburn. Murky and cloudy. Thick crop of, you guessed it, dirty white head.

Aroma: Musky, earthy, dank, wet and murky. Like a cellar that never sees the light of day. Some spices noted in the background.

Taste: Grundgy, earthy, and you guessed it....dirty. This is very thick and lives on the dark side. Not a lot of brightness here. This is like beer from beyond...It's got some funkiness and mustiness. Again, like a cellar.

Mouthfeel: Overcarbonated. Airy and fizzy in the mouth. Gaseous. Induces way too many burps.

Drinkability: This is not my thing. I do not care for this beer. This is the first time that I've revisited Jolly Pumpkin in quite some time and it will be the last time I do for quite some time. (748 characters)

Photo of Reagan1984
2.8/5  rDev -31%
look: 3 | smell: 3 | taste: 2.5 | feel: 3 | overall: 3

**after writing my review I read a few others. I was wondering if my bottle had gone bad, but based on the other comments and some others having the same questions. I think this is the way it's supposed to be. Not my thing and not like other Belgian Pale's I've enjoyed.

Upon popping open the bottle I was treated to a virtual volcano of foam. It just kept erupting out of the bottle. Way too aggressive foaming. I poured two separate glasses just to save the beer and it while it settled in the glass the bottle kept producing more foam.
In the glass there was a full glass of creamy, whipped cream. Once it settled the beer was a nice deep amber color with better clarity than I had expected at this point. As you might imagine there was non stop lacing

The aroma was very sour with a strong tart cherry aroma. Was not expecting a sour beer here. Uh Oh.

Sure enough the flavor did deliver on the sour hints advertised in the aroma. The flavor was Smokey, slightly sour and fairly medicinal. (phenol?) There was a slight fruity flavor along with a great deal of spices. Also a lot of flavors I believe are from the yeast.

The body was fairly light, the beer exploded with effervescence in your mouth from the carbonation. Puckering...

Not very drinkable in my book since it took about 4-5 minutes just to get a glass of beer out of the bottle.

I'd say this was a bit over the top in terms of tart and funk for a Belgian Pale. Not my cup of tea. (1,451 characters)

Photo of GRG1313
2.89/5  rDev -28.8%
look: 3.5 | smell: 4.5 | taste: 2 | feel: 3 | overall: 2.5

Pours a dark hazy deep orange with a thin white head that a quick swirl makes thick and firm.

Nose that is a big and pure and assertive gewertzraminer wine grape with that sweet apple and spicy character. The nose is the real winner and strength of this brew.

Mouthfeel is thin to medium with a bit of a sour character and flavor. Nice acid in the sour character that makes this a nice food beer.

Flavors may be a bit lacking for me and also are a bit salty. Love the nose; flavors are wanting. Some sour; some yeast; some savory spice - not a lot appealing, however.

A very short lackluster finish, perhaps a bit of citrus lime in the finish.

I somehow don't "get" Jolly Pumpkin. I'm still looking for a beer that I really like from Jolly Pumpkin. I'll keep tasting them but perhaps I just don't "get" them. Love the labels; not so much the beers, so far. (Maybe I had a bad bottle?) (893 characters)

Photo of SportsandJorts
3.01/5  rDev -25.9%
look: 3.75 | smell: 3.25 | taste: 2.75 | feel: 3 | overall: 3

Appearance: a hazy yellow. a big foamy off-white head.

Smell: kinda bland. some weak oaky character, funky yeast.

Taste: starts off with oak not strong or too distinct. follows with some funky yeast and a slight sourness without much character

Mouthfeel: kinda light and dull

Overall: this beer just doesn't justify the cost or the effort. pretty bland and weak flavors. way too expensive and not nearly where a jolly pumpkin should be (440 characters)

Photo of DelMontiac
3.07/5  rDev -24.4%
look: 4.5 | smell: 3 | taste: 2.5 | feel: 3.75 | overall: 3.5

Corked/caged bottled July, 2012. Shared and poured into Rose and Thorn nonic glasses. We were totally stoked to see JP in OK!

Poured a very pretty almost perfectly clear effervescent golden orange with 2 fingers of snow white cap that popped and fizzed to a thin layer in a couple of minutes.

Hmmm...what is this??? Steely and barely fruity. Maybe pears and bananas? Weak.

Well this is a bummer...is this a light beer? A very light synthetic fruitiness of pear and apple backed by a shakey backbone of ghostly bready malt. Most notable is sour apple - more sour than apple. Very lackluster compared to what I've read about it here. I'm really at a loss for words here...bland and uneventful.

I don't think feel is an issue now. Carbonation is good, but body is quite thin and lost.

Overall I have to say this is quite average. Hype is hype and it is what it is. I traded my Bam Bier after this. A very overrated brew quite honestly. (937 characters)

Photo of barleywinebrewer
3.08/5  rDev -24.1%
look: 3.5 | smell: 3 | taste: 3 | feel: 3.5 | overall: 3

last of the 3 bottles acquired via trade! I saved this for last since the description on the bottle called a lot of attention to the coriander and grains of paradise. In short, the beer seemed unbalanced and the influence of the coriander and grains of paradise made this an average beer IMO.

Glad to have tried it but not a repeat brew for me. (348 characters)

Photo of ccrida
3.08/5  rDev -24.1%
look: 3.5 | smell: 3 | taste: 3 | feel: 3.5 | overall: 3

Batch 788/791 (bottled 5-18-2011) poured into a goblet,
Luciérnaga is a dull burnt gold with an off-white head leaving scattered, foamy lace.

Smell is dirty sour, really reminding me of vegetable compost.

Taste is also rather vegetable, without much funk or tartness, mostly just a dirty blonde. The hops have a little bit of flavor that is a nice addition, but overall this is really not to good. The spices are more prominent then any texture from the yeast and bugs, but perhaps this would round out in time.

Mouthfeel is slick, oily, light bodied.

Drinkability isn't to high, probably my least favorite JP. More acid, less spice, yes. As it stands, it's serviceable, but the price makes it one I won't be revisiting anytime soon. (743 characters)

Photo of walleye
3.13/5  rDev -22.9%
look: 3.5 | smell: 3 | taste: 3 | feel: 3 | overall: 3.5

from the bottle. popped the cap on this big bottle and it foamed all over the place. poured a cloudy copper, with a big white head, that left some great lacing. aroma, sour fruits, hops, toast, honey, spicey. flavor like dry wine, sour grapes, with a touch of sugar some alcohol, fruity. a differant beer but not to bad (319 characters)

Photo of Jesse13713
3.21/5  rDev -20.9%
look: 4 | smell: 3 | taste: 3 | feel: 2.5 | overall: 4

Blend 5 - Bottled 5-14-10

Appearance - I accidentally hit this bottle against a chair a few minutes before opening, which could have been cause for the six fingers of head that this poured. Yep, I had to add my other hand to measure it. I got about an inch of actual alcohol before my snifter was almost overflowing. The foam is very concentrated and soap-like with a huge mound on top. It pours a caramel orange with slight transparency.

Smell - This beer smells of light wheat and lemon. Quite sour and tart with citrus notes. Light barley and malts linger in the background as well. Very light notes of champagne and yeast.

Taste - A surprisingly lacking and disappointing taste. I was really let down by the intensity of this taste. It isn't sour or tart; it's just watery and light bodied. Perhaps aged a little too long. The description of spices on the bottle led me ot believe this would be a spicy and sour beer. I am trying to review this beer for what it ended up being, but it's overall taste just isn't all that interesting. It is bland and boring.

Mouthfeel / Drinkability - Slightly tart and bitter; but is extremely light bodied as I stated. No real tastes stand out and nothing makes this beer anything spectacular or special. Fairly average and my least favorite Jolly Pumpkin brew. (1,304 characters)

Photo of jenbys2001
3.21/5  rDev -20.9%
look: 4.5 | smell: 3.5 | taste: 3 | feel: 3 | overall: 3

To me Luciérnaga has a flavor and mouthfeel very similar to champagne. The taste is tart, dry and spicy, and the carbonation is very high. It pours with a very foamy head that does not dissipate quickly. Not a bad beer, but a little too sour and bubbly for my tastes. I've had a few experiences now with Jolly Pumpkin Ales and they don't suit me. (347 characters)

Photo of techfed87
3.25/5  rDev -20%
look: 3.5 | smell: 3.5 | taste: 3 | feel: 3 | overall: 3.5

Pours an absolutely MAD amount of head. Color is cloudy amber red. Smells of the same characteristic Jolly Pumpkin sour that differentiates beers made from sour yeast strands from those that are consistently cultured and refined.

First sip is tasty. Sour, a little pungent, you can still get some of the Belgian-esque characteristics coming through with the beer, which give it a bit of a hoppy presence, but not too overbearing.

As Belgian Pale Ales go, it's not too bad. And as a Jolly Pumpkin goes, it's pretty alright too. (528 characters)

Photo of goodbyeohio
3.25/5  rDev -20%
look: 4 | smell: 4 | taste: 3 | feel: 2.5 | overall: 3

picked this up at julio's in mass..

pours a nice orange with a slight gravity haze.. lots of carbonation and a dark spot on top where the foam casts a shadow of doom into the body. smell is very perfumey with floral eurohops and a cracked wheat hint as well.. very odd, very pointed, almost like a brett note. you never know whats creeping into these barrels..

first thing i notice is the body which is very fizzy.. so much so that it interferes with the examination of flavor... which is ok, but wanders off in several different directions. primarily, this beer possesses a white wine-like orvally hop-funk braced blindly by a malty, buttery pale ale off flavor that seems to have been generated by the barrel. there is a slightly metallic bitterness in the end which reminds me of apple seeds. kind of a mess, and leaves you with an unpleasant aftertaste.

haven't really cared excessively for any of these jp brews (except the oro), and this one is no different. if you think this has potential, seek out goose island's matilda to see this idea carried out successfully. (1,081 characters)

Photo of champ103
3.28/5  rDev -19.2%
look: 4 | smell: 3.5 | taste: 3 | feel: 4 | overall: 3

A: Pours an attractive hazy amber/orange color. A large beige head rises to over two fingers with excellent retention. As the rocky foam gently recedes, lots of patchy lace is left in rings around the glass.
S: Big pepper notes up front and center. Really spicy as well. This has a kick to it for sure. Some light fruity aromas come out, along with the typical funky yeast.
T: Again, just a huge pepper and spice flavor that makes me cough a little every time I take a sip. Some yeasty funk and a light fruity apple flavor as well. Interesting, but is not all that well incorporated.
M/D: A medium body that is well carbonated. Crisp, creamy, and smooth at the same time. The odd combination of flavors makes for a slow sipper.

Very interesting. Though just to much peppery spice character. Add the typical Polly Pumpkin funk to the mix, and this beer just does not mesh right for me. Worth a try, but not one of their better offerings. (937 characters)

Photo of JDV
3.3/5  rDev -18.7%
look: 4 | smell: 4 | taste: 3 | feel: 3 | overall: 3

Pours bright and cloudy orange. Tart sour orange smell with light vinegar. Taste is super mild, lightly funky and not really tart at all. Faintly fruity, but rather dull and boring, in fact. Fizzy mouthfeel and some mild bittering hops. Not impressed... (253 characters)

Photo of corby112
3.39/5  rDev -16.5%
look: 4.5 | smell: 3 | taste: 3.5 | feel: 4 | overall: 3

From notes:

Pours a hazy dark golden orange/amber color with a large, two finger frothy, off-white head with very good retention, only slowly fading into a lasting ring. Large chunks of lacing left behind.

Spicy aroma with sweet citrus and light fruit notes as well as some subtle hops ans sweet alcohol. Hints of pepper and coriander along with some orange peel, apple and pear in the nose.

Medium bodied, slightly tart and puckering with a bit of earthy oak, zesty spice, sweet fruit and mild alcohol. Tight carbonation with subtle earthy oak which is countered by spicy pepper and coriander as well as sweet citrus peel, apple and pear. Dry finish. (654 characters)

Photo of SpiersBrewingCo
3.42/5  rDev -15.8%
look: 3.5 | smell: 3.25 | taste: 3.5 | feel: 3.25 | overall: 3.5

Just received a shipment of Jolly Pumpkin beers from Colorado as I am becoming more and more a fan of Artisan style barrel-aged ales and wild yeast. The first bottle I've tried is Luciernaga.

A: Pours honey-gold with a thick, bubbly and foamy head.

S: Funky woody with a hint of oak.

T: Light then follows with a tart finish with pear and green apples.

M: Extremely carbonated.

O: I am very spoiled living next to Jester King Brewery with their excellent sour and tart flavor profiles. My expectations may be too high although I am looking forward to trying and reviewing the remaining Jolly Pumpkin. That's why I bought several as I am sure there are one or two that will be even better. I'd say this is more of a Session Style Beer similar to the Le Petite France at Jester King. (786 characters)

Photo of vacax
3.46/5  rDev -14.8%
look: 4 | smell: 3 | taste: 3.5 | feel: 4 | overall: 3.5

The Firefly is a cloudy orange amber with a towering thick light tan head. Retention is good with nice lacing evident. The aroma is prototypical of all Jolly Pumpkin beers if we all want to be honest with each other. Lemony, somewhat funky, a little bit catty. Taste begins with a light malt sweetness then there is a tangy tartness with a a bit of earthy hops to it. Sour, farmhouselike funk dominates the midpalate, again in typical JP fashion. Finishes funky with some cookie on the end. This is pretty much a saison. Medium bodied with pricky yet smooth full carbonation.

This is okay... this is the first time I have had this beer yet it tastes exactly like several other Jolly Pumpkin beers I have had. (710 characters)

Photo of Jayli
3.46/5  rDev -14.8%
look: 4 | smell: 3 | taste: 3.5 | feel: 4 | overall: 3.5

Had on tap at The Publick House 7/25
Served in a snifter

A: This beer pours murky, hazy orange/light amber color with a one finger of khaki colored head. Head recedes quickly leaving sheets of lacing on the glass.

S: Nose is somewhat muted, light apple notes, orange citrus, and funk.

T: Taste starts with a corriander spicing that I did not pick up in the nose. Orange rind flavoring then comes in mingled with a bit of funk to fill out the middle. Finish is tart sour apple that lingers for a bit.

M: Lighter side of medium body, lower carbonation, crisp clean finish.

D: Goes down somewhat easily, mild kick, ok representation of the style. I enjoy Jolly Pumpkin beers and this was an ok offering, but I'd opt for other of the style if given the chance. (762 characters)

Photo of Monkeyknife
3.47/5  rDev -14.5%
look: 4 | smell: 4.5 | taste: 3 | feel: 3.5 | overall: 3

Poured from a bottle a hazy peach color with a gentle two-finger white head.

Aroma of yeast, bananas, oranges, some light earthiness and coriander.

Sadly, the taste doesn't follow the aroma. The taste is tart and salty and heavy on black pepper while the fruits and spices are pushed far to the back and hardly noticed.

Light mouthfeel, drying, and moderately carbonated.

The expected fruitiness of this bottle has left the building. Maybe a bad bottle? (457 characters)

Photo of biga7346
3.48/5  rDev -14.3%
look: 4 | smell: 3.5 | taste: 3.5 | feel: 3 | overall: 3.5

Slight fruit, apricot, leathery notes in the nose followed by pear, honeycrisp apple, red wine sourness (JP's common theme from their 100% oak aged beers), champagne-like spritziness, low carbonation, a little dry tannins.

This beer is very drinkable, perfect for very hot humid weather, a refreshing apertif. Having had the Bambic in January and then having had this I can see some similarities. Mouthfeel was velvety, slick. Again, a very refreshing but nothing really lingered in the finish. (495 characters)

Photo of oriolesfan4
3.48/5  rDev -14.3%
look: 4 | smell: 3.5 | taste: 3.5 | feel: 3 | overall: 3.5

An interesting beer for sure, really tastes like a hoppy cider. Apple flavor really comes through, medium body, somewhat clean finish. Plenty of taste but is definitely a bit tart, which hurts the drinkability a bit. One of the more unique beers you'll try, but with the expensive price tag and overly done tartness, you'd be hard pressed to finish this bottle too quickly. (373 characters)

Photo of MagicLantern
3.5/5  rDev -13.8%
look: 3.5 | smell: 3.5 | taste: 3.5 | feel: 3.5 | overall: 3.5

Poured into my Duvel glass.

Up front I want to point three things out. First, the bottle looks great. The artwork is cool and it has a by-gone era look about it. I enjoyed this and it's why I bought it. Second, I drank this maybe two months ago and I'm making this review from notes. Third, I'll follow my notes, but the fact is I just remember hating this beer. My notes say otherwise, but my memory says never again. So I guess I'm surprised to read my notes and see that I sort of enjoyed it.

A: Little to no head. Simply a halo around the edge of glass. Heavy carbonation rests at bottom of glass and rises lightly and evenly through center of glass.

Deep translucent amber with hint of red in it.

S: Pleasant. Nutty, strong but welcoming. Slightly fruity. Smell is hops to follow.

T: Sweet followed by bitter. This has a clear distinct taste that can be broken down as follows: It starts with a crisp sweetness followed by a tart flavor which is quicky covered by a swift bitter bite that lingers just abit. This is the hops one can smell in the beer. No overt alchohol taste.

M: Watery with a bitter bite that strikes back.

D: The bitterness is sharp in a manner that increases as one drinks more of this beer. This is definetely going to cap the amount one can drink. (1,295 characters)

Photo of Karibourgeois
3.5/5  rDev -13.8%

Cloudy orange pour with a nice foamy white one-finger head. Aroma is of mild sour fruit. Taste is mildly sour upfront backed by yeast, wood and musty spice flavors. As the beer warms a really nice tart citrus flavor emerges that carries through to the finish. (259 characters)

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Luciérnaga, The Firefly from Jolly Pumpkin Artisan Ales
91 out of 100 based on 382 ratings.