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Luciérnaga, The Firefly - Jolly Pumpkin Artisan Ales

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Luciérnaga, The FireflyLuciérnaga, The Firefly

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864 Ratings
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(send 'em beer!)
Ratings: 864
Reviews: 377
rAvg: 4.04
pDev: 10.4%
Wants: 62
Gots: 92 | 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:
Beer added by: putnam on 10-28-2004

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Beer: Ratings & Reviews
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Ratings: 864 | Reviews: 377 | Display Reviews Only:
Photo of ThatWineGuy
3.93/5  rDev -2.7%
look: 4.5 | smell: 4 | taste: 4 | feel: 4 | overall: 3.5

Hazy burnt orange colour with a generous three to four finger off-white head that never quits, foamy with good retention. Lots of sediment that was avoided in my glass. Fine bubble carbonation impressed with great retention and sticky sheet lace.

Smell is funky alright with spicy coriander and orange peel; a generally sour aroma predominates. Taste is funky again with a sweet but mostly sour tartness, over ripe fruit, sour peach, not too acicdic despite the mature fruit tones, balance is just about right. Aftertaste also in the tart and sour category, long after taste lingers with just a touch of vinegar that detracts from drinkability. Jolly Pumpkin ales always seem to me to be in a league of their own and this is no exception; overall a very complex and interesting belgian pale ale that I heartily enjoyed after dinner tonight, recommended.

Photo of LilBeerDoctor
3.65/5  rDev -9.7%
look: 4 | smell: 4 | taste: 4 | feel: 2.5 | overall: 3

Bottle. Pours a cloudy deep orange with a huge, thick frothy off-white head. Aroma of sweet fruits, lemon, citrus, bitter hops, and sweet tart candies. Flavor is sour/yogurty at first with a dry, malty, slightly bitter finish. Palate is thin, sort of watery. This is alright, certainly easy to drink but underwhelming.

Photo of ChainGangGuy
3.81/5  rDev -5.7%
look: 4.5 | smell: 3.5 | taste: 4 | feel: 4 | overall: 3.5

750ml bottle - $8.49 at Beverage SuperStore in Suwanee, Georgia. No listed batch number.

Appearance: Pours out a clearish, dark orange body with a huge, dense, foamy, white head.

Smell: Malts enveloped with acrid notes of musty wild yeasts, butyric acid, juiced apples, mangled pineapples, damp oak wood, earthy spices.

Taste: Toasted, honeyish malts instantly disappear behind the strongly phenolic Brett character. Pristine pineapple juice blended with spoiled apple juice. The doses of Grains of Paradise and coriander are quite spicy and particularly pungent, giving the tongue a bit of enduring ginger-like heat. Touch of oak. Surprisingly bitter as well. Particularly dry finish with a lingering taste of the added spices.

Mouthfeel: Medium-bodied. Medium-high carbonation.

Drinkability: As always, it's another weird, wild ride from Jolly Pumpkin. The spices can be a bit overly brash at times. While not the most captivating of the Jolly Pumpkin lineup, it's certainly solid and worth a try.

Photo of ClockworkOrange
3.88/5  rDev -4%
look: 4 | smell: 3.5 | taste: 4 | feel: 4 | overall: 4

A 750ml capped bottle shared with psycohops and brothercannon. Poured into a trio of plain snifters, the ale appears a cloudy medium apricot color with about two fingers of fluffy off white foam. Aromas and flavors are of coriander, sour green apples, enough sourness to make you briefly pucker, mildly spicy yeast, sweet, funky, and a sour. Quite the complex ale here. Light to medium bodied and amply carbonated. No doubt, I'd seek this one out again.

Photo of rtepiak
4.25/5  rDev +5.2%
look: 4.5 | smell: 4.5 | taste: 4 | feel: 4 | overall: 4.5

pour is murky golden in color. with a nice balanced head of tight bubbles. smell is a tart musk familar to jolly pumpkin. sour quality. not as powerful as some others of the brewery though. night pineapple, lemon, sort of orval like. takes is all there. smooth hop of citrus. pineapple, lemon, pepper, yeast, a very mild tart quality similar to a flemish wild. a musk sweetness simliar to that style too. fantastic beer. will definately have again. a must for BPA fans. great for late spring.

Photo of ffejherb
3.53/5  rDev -12.6%
look: 4 | smell: 3.5 | taste: 3.5 | feel: 3.5 | overall: 3.5

750ml bottle into half pint on 4/1/09, courtesy of Deuane.

A - Slightly cloudy amber body with vigorous carbonation and one-finger off-white head that settled into a quarter inch of retention and deposited a modest amount of lace on the glass.

S - Spicy and mildly astringent nose with some funky yeast. Hints of clove, coriander and citrus rind round out the aroma.

T - Spicy flavor with hints of clove and coriander, as well as a funky sour green apple character. Earthy hops provide some mild bitter notes in the finish.

M - Light to medium bodied with a syrupy texture and lively carbonation, resulting in a prickly mouthfeel. Finish is spicy and slightly bitter on the palate.

D - Quite a complex Belgian-style ale, yet not something of which I could drink a full bottle on my own. I definitely admire the character of this brew, and I will certainly try other Jolly Pumpkin offerings in the future.

Photo of Beerzebub
4.28/5  rDev +5.9%
look: 5 | smell: 4.5 | taste: 4 | feel: 4 | overall: 4.5

Thanks to sarcastro for trading me this.

Poured in a big wine glass at 55 F/ 13 C.

Striking hazy orange color, massive cream colored head that slowly melts into valleys between stiff plateaus, huge chunky lace. Impressive.

Exotic fruity spicy custardy aroma, complex and alluring. Golden apple, stone fruits, orange zest, custard, exotic spices.

Tastes tart, fruity, spicy, and floral. Sharper than the aroma, less sweet and creamy, but their is some mild sweetness. Bitter lime peel, orange, peach, spices, and floral perfume especially towards the finish. Long bitter finish, lime, flowers, and some stone.

Tart juicy texture, quite refreshing and thirst quenching.

Exotic and tasty, I enjoyed this.

Photo of robbyc1
4.6/5  rDev +13.9%
look: 4 | smell: 4 | taste: 5 | feel: 4 | overall: 5

Won a bronze in the 2008 GABF as a French and Belgian style Saison. A funky and cloudy look of off orange, with a bright sour nose with spices and a light malt backbone. The sourness combines with the spices and malt to give you a funky Saison that goes down easy. It wafts a great aroma that is outdone by the taste, one to savor on it's own or with spicy food. Keep this baby around especially in spring and summer months.

Photo of Reagan1984
2.8/5  rDev -30.7%
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.

Photo of jujubeast6000
3.56/5  rDev -11.9%
look: 5 | smell: 4 | taste: 3 | feel: 4 | overall: 3.5

Reviewed 11/1/2007 (bottle):

Pours a huge foamy head, off-white, good lacing. Extremely cloudy amber color. Fizzy with dark coloring. Aroma of spices, maybe pumpkin, nutmeg. Some flowers, Some sour. Enticing, but not too strong. Fizzy, sour taste. Might be a bad bottle. Some of the spices, but not very flavorful. Reminds me of a flemish sour or a geuze. Soft mouthfeel. More flavor as it warms. More hoppy.

Photo of Yetiman420
3.9/5  rDev -3.5%
look: 4 | smell: 4 | taste: 4 | feel: 4 | overall: 3.5

Crazy fluffy three finger head. Took a while to split this between two standard pint glasses. I took the portion with major yeast dregs.

Golden copper color with tons of tiny bubbles.

Funkiness and spice aroma. Anticipating sourness based on aroma. First couple of sips come across musty. Pale ale bitterness and hop aroma comes through at the halfway point.

A very nice beer although I was hoping for a bit more sour and funky out of this one form JP.

Photo of yourefragile
4.13/5  rDev +2.2%
look: 4.5 | smell: 4 | taste: 4 | feel: 4 | overall: 4.5

750 mL bottle poured into a Duvel tulip.

A: Chilled hazy copper, golden amber color with steady carbonation. A massive, rocky foamy white head with great retention and large sticky webs of lacing. Later pours are a little cloudier as I have trouble keeping the sediment out of the glass in the pour.
S: Fairly sharp, slightly sour, very earthy aroma. Slightly spicy (coriander and pepper) and some ripe fruit, but not sweet. Not overly complex, the musty earthiness is the strongest smell.
T: Medium body with strong, bubbly carbonation. Light and zesty in the finish. Body is slightly sour and very earthy like the nose. Grass, grains, orange, pepper, coriander and other fruit rind like flavors are prominent. Body and finish is fairly dry, yet full. Personally, I would like a little more sweetness or tartness to put this beer over the top for me, but still an excellent American take on this style (reminds me a lot of an Orval).

Photo of lamarr04
4.65/5  rDev +15.1%
look: 4.5 | smell: 4.5 | taste: 4.5 | feel: 5 | overall: 5

pt. bottle poured into tulip glass

A: deep orange with persistent 3 inch white foamy head
S: Yeast, apples (smells like hard cider)
T: Bready yeast, sour apple, spice at the end with a clean finish. Very smooth and refined.
M: Crisp carbonation, medium to light body
D: I will have to finish this whole bottle by myself, and that is a task I will gladly undertake

Notes: I've been on a belgian kick as of late and have only had a few of jolly pumpkins offerings. I look forward to working my way through their lineup.

Photo of lhaqq
4.35/5  rDev +7.7%
look: 4.5 | smell: 4.5 | taste: 4.5 | feel: 4 | overall: 4

A: Cloudy light brow/golden body with a huge off-white, sticky billowy head.
S: Main smells are yeast and green apples. A sour apple twinge at the end.
T: Not as much of a sour pang as I was expecting, but still good. Kinda oaky with a little bit of the sour apple, but it ends quickly, and there is only a dull sour/bitter aftertaste.
M: Pretty lively and the lack of almost any aftertaste is great.
D: Definitely pretty drinkable for the style.

Photo of rye726
4.38/5  rDev +8.4%
look: 5 | smell: 4.5 | taste: 4 | feel: 5 | overall: 4.5

Like all the other JP beers, this has a perfect Belgianesque appearance. Pours a woody brown with a thick, lacy head. A somewhat light nose of sweet malts, soft herbs, orange, honey, tart fruit, oak and spicy yeasts. Taste is slightly more rubust. The sour fruit and funky oak flavors come out a bit more. Crisp, refreshing body. Another unique brew from Jolly Pumpkin.

Photo of dreadnatty08
4.67/5  rDev +15.6%
look: 4 | smell: 4.5 | taste: 5 | feel: 4.5 | overall: 4.5

Bursting forth from the bottle, this beer pours a hazy medium amber color with plentiful and large bubbled white head. Aromas are full of tart cherries, deep oak, white balsamic vineagar, and a touch of floralness. On the palate, things really develop beautifully with such complexity. Take a regular BPA, age it in oak, add some bugs and spices, and you get such a rounded and enjoyable beer like this. With each bottle I buy from this brewery, the more I understand how well Americans can make beer, world class beer. Ron Jeffereys and the rest of Jolly Pumpkin deserve the recognition they all to often do not receive.

Photo of Floydster
3.52/5  rDev -12.9%
look: 4 | smell: 4.5 | taste: 3 | feel: 3 | overall: 3.5

750 ml bottle given to me as an extra from OHLRangers, thanks for the opportunity Ed, fresh batch, poured into my Duvel tulip glass

A-Light orange with some golden highlights, two and a half inch creamy white head that stays around for a long time, nice retention, some lacing at first
S-Aroma was the best part of this beer by far, wild yeast is what hits you first, then funkiness, lemons, Belgian sugar, orange peel, oak, champagne, minimal sour notes, hoppiness, spices, and grassy accents
T-Starts off slightly tart and then fades into some toasted malt in the middle that is a little sweet, finish is super dry because of the yeast, more fruit comes to the surface as it warms, nice mix of sweet and dry until it warms and it becomes only dry for the most part, expected this one to be more sour but it lacked in that complexity, never really tasted the spices I could smell either, great nose but the flavor lacked what was going for it there, still enjoyable at times
M-Sparkling and bubbly feel until it warms, dry and slightly sweet mouthfeel, taste lingers for some time, medium bodied, lots of carbonation
D-Goes down pretty easy but the overly dry aftertaste could cause some problems later on, ABV is pretty low and it is light on the stomach though, crisp but not as smooth as it could be

One of my least favorite Jolly Pumpkins yet, smelled great but the flavor was just lacking in my opinion, hopefully the grand reserve sitting in my closet will be better than this one, probably would not drink again if I had others from this brewery to choose from, still worth trying

Photo of Haybeerman
4.42/5  rDev +9.4%
look: 4 | smell: 4.5 | taste: 4.5 | feel: 4 | overall: 4.5

A: Lightly clouded orange-apricot color with a bit of spent yeast gliding to the botto. Poured a five finger billowy head that settled to an ample dollop in the middle. Generous even lacing all the way down. Decanted steadily.

S: Yeast, light fruits, fruity esters; orange rinds become prominent. Spices and alcohol more to the forefront as it warms.

T: Oak and a wonderfuly coplex sweet and sour flavors. Dry, clean finish.

M: Bright and a bit thin. Light, crisp and clean finish nicely bordered by ample carbonation.

D: Way drinkable and wonderfully complex. This is a beer when you want something special that you'll like a lot.

Photo of Kempleton
4.32/5  rDev +6.9%
look: 4 | smell: 4.5 | taste: 4.5 | feel: 4 | overall: 4

Poured from the 750ml brown glass bottle into a Beir du Boucanier tulip glass.
Deep golden almost brown, dark orange color with an immense pillowy off white/tan head that left great lacing.
Smells like oak tartness, funk, hay, fresh cut grass, and a hint of vanilla.
Tastes of funk and sour, tart very oaky, some fruit, sour apricots, good ripe peaches.
Mouthfeel is a bit foamy at first then becomes bubbly and refreshing.
I would definitly drink this again and again. Very good highly recomended.

Photo of WVbeergeek
4.37/5  rDev +8.2%
look: 4.5 | smell: 5 | taste: 4 | feel: 4 | overall: 4.5

Batch # 296/297 with the Unibroue style bottles, versus the shaped bottles they used early one.

As all great Jolly Pumpkin beers this one lays on a massive thick billowing head with chunky mountainous textures as it rises above the rim of my Maudite chalice. Body is a clouded glowing amber copper hue with the head ringing in off white beige. Lacing is fine and intricate the most authentic Beligan style brewer in the country right up there with Ommegang and Unibroue but with more machismo.

Aromatics are wonderful spicy black pepper with crushed mint leaves and citrus peels, funky brett notes bringing horse blanket and barnyard funk, this stuff is excellent very lively and unique even compared to other Jolly Pumpkin brews. Tart apples and other fruit notes are detected among the barrage of hops, spices, and malts.

Flavor has an incredible hoppy zesty freshness within the barrel aging and spice additions. Very much like a fresh baked artisan bread with each sip with citrus, ripe fruits including tart apples and tropical notes. As each the last of the bottle is poured into glass spices and yeast notes take over before that however the brett and horsek blanket barnyard funk ride with you the whole bottle and I enjoyed it thoroughly.

Mouthfeel is medium bodied with lively carbonation very natural organic experience especially in the manner that they brew with open fermentation. Bitter spices and hop oils do sit on the palate after each sip with the tart lactic and brettanomyces adding a slight puckering sensation on the palate.

Drinkability is excellent enjoy with a meal or on it's own as a meal. Great stuff I can't get enough of the vibrance that La Luciernaga has to offer wonderful stuff. Grand cru belgian style pale ale flows so well, makes me want to go and grab a Biere De Mars to see how it's coming along.

Photo of goethean
4.27/5  rDev +5.7%
look: 4 | smell: 4.5 | taste: 4 | feel: 4.5 | overall: 4.5

Refreshingly tart and hoppy aroma. Intensely sweet light maltiness, overlaid and balanced with some herbal Continental hops flavor. Not much brett sourness or funkiness. Citrusy...grapefruit?

Nice dry, very subtly hoppy aftertaste. Interesting, complex, fresh, lively flavor profile.

Surprisingly conventional for a Jolly Pumpkin. Maybe some age would do it good. Highly drinkable.

Photo of shadow1961
4.12/5  rDev +2%
look: 4 | smell: 4.5 | taste: 4 | feel: 4 | overall: 4

I've liked Jolly Pumpkin's Nightmare Before Christmas sensibilities ever
since I've come to be aware of them, and I was really glad to finally score
some here in Minnesota.

Their Luciérnaga, The Firefly, Belgian Pale Ale pours a big fluffy head over
a cloudy pech colored brew. Carbonation is hard to gauge, but the nose
has that nice tart fruity funkiness you can only get by aging beer on wood.
The flavor is interesting- light malts, that vinous tartness from the nose, peppery
notes and a bit of herbal hop all mixing it up. Mouthfeel is light, crisp, and dry-
due to that bit of sourness from the barrel aging and the herbal hop bitterness
double teaming your taste buds. A very nice, complex beer- it manages to be
delicate yet assertive. This is another good brew to drag out for your wine-loving
chums to try. Nice. Get some if you can.

Photo of halfP1NT
3.9/5  rDev -3.5%
look: 4 | smell: 4 | taste: 4 | feel: 4 | overall: 3.5

Got to try this one down in Florida.

I popped this beer and it foamed up all over the place. It was chilling in the fridge for a good long while beforehand. I had to put it in the sink so it wouldn't go all over the floor. I think I read one other review that this happened. But anyway...

This brew (eventually) pours a cloudy, deep brown with a huge, dense, rocky, off-white head and tons of lacing.

Smell is spice, bread and yeast. It smells just like a spice cake. Nice. There's a little alcohol coming through.

Taste is yeasty and bready, lemon zest and spice, finishes a little dry and lingers. This beer is very full bodied with a moderate amount of carbonation. It coats my mouth. It becomes a little tart as it warms.

There's something about this beer that hurts the drinkability a little, perhaps just the heaviness, but it really is very enjoyable overall. I wish I could get more Jolly Pumpkin in NJ.

Photo of allengarvin
4.38/5  rDev +8.4%
look: 4.5 | smell: 4 | taste: 4.5 | feel: 4.5 | overall: 4.5

Into a Val-Dieu chalice, this beer is a cloudy (to the point of opaqueness) amber brown with a dense, thick and tall head. Nice, perfumy nose, with sweet fruitiness and moderate coriander spiciness. Hugely spicy flavor, with lots of coriander, making for a very peppery taste, almost pungent. Yeastiness is rather phenolic, and some malt finally comes through toward the finish. A lot of carbonation with a zesty mouthfeel.

Complex and interesting. This would be a great dinnertime beer.

Photo of largadeer
4.2/5  rDev +4%
look: 4 | smell: 4 | taste: 4.5 | feel: 4 | overall: 4

Appearance: Awesome artwork on this one, the JP labels are consistently impressive. The beer pours a hazy amber color, almost opaque. The head on this is enormous; three fingers in height and slow to recede, leaving chunks of lace on the glass.

Smell: Lemony, faintly musty and spicy. Esters and oak.

Taste & mouthfeel: A nice blend of oaky tannins and orange peel are the first things to hit my palate. Spices underneath, subtle enough that I can't pick out anything specific, along with some dry graininess. Fairly light-bodied stuff. Carbonation is high, almost champagne-like. The finish is bone dry, leaving a bit of tannic oak flavor and a mild bitterness on the tongue.

Notes: Not my favorite JP, but good nonetheless. I was hoping for a bit more of the usual JP funk and sourness.

Luciérnaga, The Firefly from Jolly Pumpkin Artisan Ales
90 out of 100 based on 864 ratings.