Dismiss Notice
Sneak peek! BeerAdvocate magazine #104 (September 2015) featuring Leah & Oscar from Highland Brewing in Asheville, North Carolina. Learn more ...

La Roja - Grand Reserve - Jolly Pumpkin Artisan Ales

Not Rated.
La Roja - Grand ReserveLa Roja - Grand Reserve

Educational use only; do not reuse.
BA SCORE
91
outstanding

87 Reviews
THE BROS
-
no score

(Send Samples)
Reviews: 87
Hads: 213
rAvg: 4.09
pDev: 6.6%
Wants: 296
Gots: 73 | FT: 11
Brewed by:
Jolly Pumpkin Artisan Ales visit their website
Michigan, United States

Style | ABV
American Wild Ale |  8.00% ABV

Availability: Rotating

Notes & Commercial Description:
Beer added by: Gueuzedude on 02-16-2006

No notes at this time.
View: Beers (42) | Events
Beer: Reviews & Ratings
Sort by:  Recent | High | Low | Top Raters
first ← prev | 1-25 | 26-50 | 51-75  | nextlast
Reviews: 87 | Hads: 213
Photo of 4DAloveofSTOUT
2.81/5  rDev -31.3%
look: 3.75 | smell: 2.75 | taste: 2.75 | feel: 2.75 | overall: 2.75

12.7 fl oz bottle sealed with JP pressure cap.

white letters on the bottom of the bottle state: blend 1; bottled on 11/03/2014

poured into SP wine stem.

Appearance: deep maroon red body with ruby colored hues when held up to light. Moderate opacity. Dirty off white colored head that starts 2 full fingers tall. Head drops down to uneven cap leaving random and spotty lacing.

Smell: This smell quite acetic almost getting to levels of spicy acetone character. This does not bode well for how this beer might taste... I hope it does not taste like nail polish remover, but it smells like the possiblity is definately there. It also smells very rich; spicy, sweet, oaky, and fruity. Elements of cherry pie and light musty funk are noticable as well.

Taste: This brings a mellow sour bite with a lot of spiciness. It has a boozey burn up front with the sour and spice and you do taste some acetone. Cherry pie, wet oak, musty funk, and dirt.

Mouthfeel: medium bodied beer with low carbonation. Stinging and spicy boozyness. Not very drinkable. Gives a sensation of immediate acid reflux in the back of your throat after each sip.

Overall: Well, this is not a very good sour. You can tell it had the potential to be good, but acetone flavors have ruined this for me. I will probably just stick with La Roja because it is a much better beer. Not sure that I want to try other Jolly Pumpkin Grand reserve beers because this was pretty disappointing for my first taste of Jolly Pumpkin grand reserve series beers. I think Jolly pumpkin can do much better than this... Makes me wonder if this is just a bad bottle or all bottles are like this from this release. (1,669 characters)

Photo of drbenderdo
2.98/5  rDev -27.1%
look: 3 | smell: 3 | taste: 3 | feel: 2.75 | overall: 3

Blend 1: bottled 11-3-14
Poured a murky brown with basically no head. Smell is funky and tart. First few sips were nice and sour, but as it warmed, all I could taste was sherry vinegar. Very unusual mouthfeel. Overall, disappointed. LOVE the original La Roja....one of my all time favorites. This, not so much. (311 characters)

Photo of Alieniloquium
2.99/5  rDev -26.9%
look: 2 | smell: 3 | taste: 3 | feel: 3.5 | overall: 3

330 mL bottle poured into a snifter. Batch 438/439. Bottled 7/25/2011.

Appearance - Almost flat, deep reddish amber. A few stray bubbles.

Smell - Oaky and slightly acetic. Lots of malt. Kind of uninspired.

Taste - Much more acidic here, at least. Not too acetic, but that's the sourness that lingers. Grassy vegetal flavor. Malty and oaky as well.

Mouthfeel - Not too intense of a sour. Very low carbonation.

Overall - I prefer regular La Roja. This is no improvement as the oak doesn't seem to add anything and the sourness is less complex. (546 characters)

Photo of BigDaddyWil
3.03/5  rDev -25.9%
look: 3.5 | smell: 3 | taste: 3 | feel: 3 | overall: 3

Purchased at the brewery, back in the Spring.
La Roja oaked aged for 18 months.
Poured into a New Belgium chalice.

Pours a caramel brown color with some ruby highlights. No carbonation and very still. A sliver of an off white head, with no retention. Strong boozy and oak dominate the smell. This is the strongest sour tasting beer I've had from Jolly Pumpkin so far. Its not overpowering but still very noticable. Vert tart with hints of oak and alcohol. No carbonation knocks down the mouthfeel a little bit, but still enjoyable. I still like the regular La Roja better, a little too boozy for me. (604 characters)

Photo of cfrances33
3.13/5  rDev -23.5%
look: 2 | smell: 4 | taste: 3 | feel: 2.5 | overall: 3

2011 bottle, poured into a teku glass.

Pour: A copper, rusty body. Absolutely no carbonation, and is dead flat. A couple bubbles on the rim. This is an ugly beer.

Smell: Some nice sour cherries up front, along with a burnt caramel and a light oak. Some vanilla comes through as well.

Taste: Starts off with a big tartness up front, characterized by tart cherries and vinegar. I'm honestly getting a little bit of oxidation, and the flavors are quite dull, despite the strong sourness. A caramel sweetness comes on the back, and the most redeeming quality is a nice oak and vanilla on the finish. I would describe the overall taste as stale.

Mouthfeel: Horribly flat, which sometimes is okay, but is NOT here. Muddles the flavors, and makes each sip difficult. Finishes dry, which is nice.

Overall: If someone poured me this beer, and I didn't see it go right from the bottle into the glass, I would be convinced is got left out overnight, put in the fridge to cool, and then served to me. Very disappointed. (1,012 characters)

Photo of UCLABrewN84
3.28/5  rDev -19.8%
look: 3.25 | smell: 3.25 | taste: 3.25 | feel: 3.5 | overall: 3.25

Thanks to mrbubbler for sharing this one at his tasting.

Blend 1. Bottled 11/3/14.

Pours a murky dark orange-brown with a foamy beige head that settles to wisps of film on top of the beer. Tiny dots of lace form around the glass on the drink down. Smell is sour with malt, fruit, fruit juice, and acetone aromas. Taste is much the same with sour malt, fruit, fruit juice, and acidic flavors on the finish. There is a medium amount of acidity on the palate with each sip. This beer has a lower level of carbonation with a slightly crisp mouthfeel. Overall, this is an above average beer that is drinkable, but the acetone aromas aren't too pleasant.

Serving type: bottle. (673 characters)

Photo of Bubba83
3.33/5  rDev -18.6%
look: 4.5 | smell: 4 | taste: 3.5 | feel: 2 | overall: 2.5

Had this on tap at the Beachwood BBQ Sourfest, so I'm reviewing from notes. As Gabe said during the fest, this was supposedly the only keg of this beer in existance.

I like the appearance a lot. It's a dark orange/amber mix with some yellowish highlights. A bright white decent sized head that looks fluffy and creamy at the same time.

Smells a bit vinegary, with a bunch of tart fruits behind that. I'm getting raspberries, not yet ripe blackberries, cranberries, and some yeasty funk and spice. Hard to get to it but there's some breadiness underneath all that.

Lots and lots of tart fruit flavor, every berry underneath the sun, but as if you were tasting them a little too early and hence they are tart. Some vinous character and vanilla give way to an unfortunately harsh tasting alcoholic finish.

Feels really dry and grainy, very prickly in my mouth and sand papery, not impressed.

Overall this beer was kind of a little bit all over the map. There's some interesting flavor components playing which eachother, but ultimately the mouthfeel and the harsh finish really let it down, shame that won't be reflected so well in the overall score with the way the weighting system works. (1,192 characters)

Photo of StaEva
3.37/5  rDev -17.6%
look: 4 | smell: 3.25 | taste: 3.25 | feel: 3.5 | overall: 3.5

lots of acetone, vinegar, ugly raisin sweetness. not the best showing by JP. lots of oxidation in the bottle, possibly not purged before filling? I'd rather drink BamBier all day everyday.

don't go out of your way to get a hold of this, as it was not yet ready to be consumed. (277 characters)

Photo of barefootbrewer
3.47/5  rDev -15.2%
look: 3 | smell: 3.5 | taste: 3.5 | feel: 3.5 | overall: 3.5

This beer poured an orange color with a quickly falling cream colored head. The aroma is sour and yeasty and quite strong initially, but it mellows quickly. The taste is sour and sweet with a hint of spice. The mouthfeel is thin and quite carbonated. Overall the drinkability is fair, but it goes down a little easier as the brew warms. (336 characters)

Photo of Thorpe429
3.5/5  rDev -14.4%
look: 3.5 | smell: 3.5 | taste: 3.5 | feel: 3.5 | overall: 3.5

32-month edition. Batch 48. Thanks to ygtbsm94 for sharing. Served in a Bruery tulip.

Pours a rusty amber color without any head. THe nose brings some light cherry in the foreground plus a bit of oak in the background. Overall, the nose is mildly acetic and has a bit of old burnt rubber. Some mild funk as well. The taste is overwhelming sour, and it almost hurts my mouth. Granted, I had a cut on the inside of my lip, but still. Very puckering and has quite a bit of oak. Almost too sour to be enjoyable. More of the problem, I think, we that there was nothing other than a bit of oak to back up the sourness. Too bad, as I was really excited to try this one. Thanks again, Brad. (683 characters)

Photo of mpyle
3.53/5  rDev -13.7%
look: 4 | smell: 3.5 | taste: 3.5 | feel: 3.5 | overall: 3.5

Amber color and clear. Moderate sized white head with good retention.

Peppery, fruity, red wine. slightly earthy, barn yard aroma.

Fruity sweet, bitter, and eventually sour. Like the sweet and sour, but the bitterness felt out of place. Medicinal. Too bitter at the start.

Medium body and light-medium carbonation. A bit astringent from the sourness, minimal alcohol warming.

More bitter than expected, and not the fruity/sour combo that is sometimes seen in the style. (473 characters)

Photo of womencantsail
3.55/5  rDev -13.2%
look: 3.5 | smell: 3.5 | taste: 3.5 | feel: 4 | overall: 3.5

Batch 48. The beer is a murky dark amber color with minimal head formation. As expected, quite a bit of vinegar. Sort of a blend of balsamic and red wine vinegars. A bit of toffee sweetness and perhaps a hint of acetone. A nice oakiness and mild vanilla. Not much fruit on the nose. The intensity of the vinegar is equal to the aroma. A decent amount of cherry and red grape flavor with a nice wine note. A hint of vanilla along with some tannic oak. Nice flavors, but the acetic quality makes it a bit tough to drink. (518 characters)

Photo of mentor
3.55/5  rDev -13.2%
look: 3.5 | smell: 3.5 | taste: 3.5 | feel: 4 | overall: 3.5

Bottle purchased at the brewery about 6 months ago. Pours a murky dark copper with almost no head. Smells soured and brettanomyces. Fresh lettuce from the crisper, sour brett w/o much horseblanket, and cherry.

Tastes sour. Acetic more than lactic, which is a change for the beers I've had from Jolly Pumpkin. Peaches and nice oaky character. Some alcohol heat adds a counterpoint zing. Md-light mouthfeel, yet light and creamy. Decent drinkability. Not profoundly complex. An interesting take on brettanomyces. (511 characters)

Photo of mrmanning
3.68/5  rDev -10%
look: 4 | smell: 3.5 | taste: 3.5 | feel: 4 | overall: 4

Bottle courtesy of Styles, thanks buddy! Deep brown pour with a thin dusting of beige fizz. Very fruity aroma with lots of funk (no surprises), yeast and spices. Very strong wood flavours with minimal booze flavours as well. Nuts and floral nuances as well. Funky finish with tart fruit lingering. Thanks Chris for another gem! (327 characters)

Photo of ppoitras
3.73/5  rDev -8.8%
look: 4 | smell: 3.5 | taste: 4 | feel: 3.5 | overall: 3.5

12oz bottle obtained via trade with CRJMellor. Thanks for the opportunity...

Poured into a Rapscallion glass, formed a light small-bubbled and short-lived uneven film over the translucent but not clear burgundy brew. Lacing is minimal to nearly non-existant. However, all this stuff is to be somewhat expected from brew aged in oak for months as this one apparently was. Aroma is, yow, strong stuff. Dominant barrel and alcohol notes, leaving little room for anything else. Taste is much more balanced than the nose. Starts with tart fruitiness, vanilla and oak sashay on in, and then the alcohol takes over. Cannot believe this only 8%abv. There is just no way. Mouthfeel and drinkability are not bad for what it is, but wish it was just a bit more user-friendly all around. The burning alcohol I find in the aroma sort of infringes on everything else. (857 characters)

Photo of plaztikjezuz
3.73/5  rDev -8.8%
look: 4 | smell: 3.5 | taste: 4 | feel: 3.5 | overall: 3.5

this beer was tasted at the michigan brewers guild winter beer fest.
from my notes i was served a deep copper sample with a good head.
the aroma was full of brett.
the flavor was a little sour , fruity, minerally, unidentified spice.
the mouthfeel was little watery.
they were pushing this as a 18 month oak aged la roja. (326 characters)

Photo of BMMillsy
3.77/5  rDev -7.8%
look: 3 | smell: 4 | taste: 3.75 | feel: 3.75 | overall: 3.75

Bottle from trade. Batch 438/439. 7-25-2011 bottle date. Poured 2-20-13. Pours cloudy red with no head at all. Smells like the regular La Roja with a bit more vinegar. Bit of dry oak present for sure. Sour cherries. Bit of paint thinner. Mellow mouthfeel explodes into strong but smooth sour notes. Cherry vinegar that finishes very dry. A nice beer, very low carbonation. Not sure if the oak did all that much here. (416 characters)

Photo of scottfrie
3.79/5  rDev -7.3%
look: 3.75 | smell: 3.5 | taste: 4 | feel: 3.75 | overall: 3.75

375ml bottle bottled 3/2012. Thanks jbck109!

A: Pours a murky dark cranberry juice color with a minimal off-white head that faded into a bubbly collar that left a few spots of soapy lace down the glass.
S: Musty barrel notes meet red fruits. I get hints of apple vinegar, cherry skins, woody oak tannins, cranberry juice and acetone.
T: Tart and slightly acidic notes of red wine vinegar, apple vinegar, sour cherry juice, cranberry juice, gritty dry oak, leather and damp musty basement. The finish has a hint of sweetness and the aftertaste is full of sour lemon peel and dry cherry skin tannins.
M: Rather thick body, greasy, slick, tart, and dry mouthfeel, with very low splashy carbonation and an acidic/acetone bite. Dry but not crazy.
O: I thought the flavors were good and smoothed out by the oak. An enjoyable sour from JP but not my favorite from their lineup. Thanks again Jay. (889 characters)

Photo of Gueuzedude
3.84/5  rDev -6.1%
look: 3 | smell: 4 | taste: 4 | feel: 3 | overall: 4

Labled as La Roja Select (Brandy Barrel Aged Flemish-Style Amber Ale)

Sampled on tap at the First Annual Stone Sour Fest, July 2007

The beer is quite hazy and is a dirty, amber color that looks almost completely flat with a few wayward bubbles lazing around. The aroma is a mix of sour / funk notes as well as some big wood / barrel character; a mix of spicy wood, buttery oak, tart plum, hints of cheddar, and some Bourbon-like notes that come through with out being overwhelming. The oak aromatics are more noticeable than any Brandy notes.

The beer fells flat as it hits the mouth, there is no carbonation, which accents a light sweetness, which in turn accentuates some fruit notes of Macintosh and plum. The finish is tannic; like a green tee that coats the teeth. There is a spicy note in the finish that is contributed by some hot alcohol notes, spicy oak flavors and a light, yet drying astringency. This beer would be really helped by some carbonation, especially since the flavors in this beer are so well balanced. This is a nice mix of light tart flavors, mellow, yet persistent oak notes and a hint of liquor-like notes. Actually, carbonation would make this a fantastic beer. This has much better, more integrated flavors than the Oro de Calabaza Reserve. (1,278 characters)

Photo of cosmicevan
3.87/5  rDev -5.4%
look: 4 | smell: 3.75 | taste: 4 | feel: 3.75 | overall: 3.75

big thanks to genuinedisciple for sending this one my way. enjoyed from a jolly pumpkin snifter side-by-side with a bottle of regular La Roja, for science ofcourse.

la roja grand reserve batch 454 & 469 bottled 03-13-2012
la roja blend 5 bottled 02-15-2013

a - brew opened and the cap and collar of the bottle were coated with some funky residue (sediment?)...a bit gross, but the brew poured the same semi-transparent amber maroon as the regular la roja, but the regular boasted a bigger fluffier head and better lacing.

s - nose is fairly funky. lots of lacto and acetone. the regular is soft sour with some fruity notes in the flanders vein...whereas the grand reserve is way puckery...almost to the point of nail polish remover. my poor teeth enamel!

t - picks up right where the nose left off. SUPER sour. acetone, funky sour bugs and bacteria...almost too sour, whereas the regular la roja has some of the same sour elements, but seems to fall a bit flat to the grand reserve...like the cherries have barely started to sour, but not the grand reserve...almost too sour. as it warmed and my palate adjusted to the sourness, i found myself really getting into it.

m - soft feel, but comes with an extreme pucker. one of the more in your face sour beers i've tried.

o - overall, grand reserve is an improvement on the base...it isn't necessarily a home run. the sourness is a bit over the top for me and makes me feel like my tooth enamel is getting stripped from the beer. extremely glad to have the tick, but not something i'd seek out again. as it warmed and my palate adjusted to the sourness, i found myself really getting into it. (1,645 characters)

Photo of HopHead84
3.87/5  rDev -5.4%
look: 3.5 | smell: 4 | taste: 4 | feel: 4 | overall: 3.5

A vigorous pour from the 12oz bottle yields a small, beige head with little retention and very little lacing. The color is deep ruby amber. The aroma is of tart cherries, barnyard funk, oak, and alcohol. Taste is funky, tart cherries with some oak and lactic acid. Finish is very tart and alcohol with some bourbn. Mouthfeel is very thin and syrupy with low carbonation...slightly puckering as well. Interesting beer. (417 characters)

Photo of Crosling
3.9/5  rDev -4.6%
look: 4 | smell: 4 | taste: 4 | feel: 4 | overall: 3.5

Orange color with a small, white head that leaves a light ring. Aroma shows a lot of the barrel with coconut, wild yeast and mountain fruit notes. Flavor has a lot of wildness, red fruit character, funk and a lot of barrel contributions. It's a funked out sour ale with a lot of complexity. It's a nice ale. (307 characters)

Photo of mikesgroove
4/5  rDev -2.2%
look: 4 | smell: 4 | taste: 4 | feel: 4 | overall: 4

I had acquired this one in a trade a while back and had been waiting to give it a whirl. So when I went for something intresting with lunch today, I thought this would be just the ticket. Served cold and poured into a snifter, this one was consumed on 04/11/2009.

Appearance - Deep reddish amber, burnt sienna in color/ cloudy with a small whispy offwhite head that left a light coating on the sides and bottom of the glass.

Aroma - The aroma was nice, oak with a light funk are pressing here. Some light spice and as it warms up lots of cherries coming at me now.

Taste - Cherries from the start, very nice. light oak and woody notes press in mid palate and as it warms a nice touch of spice starts to come through, almost peppery at times. Some light apple vinegar like flavor in the finish as a dry finish fades off.

Mouthfeel - A smooth, medium bodied ale, nice carbonation here prickled at the tongue at times. Coating and just right.

Drink - Very smooth, with almost no hint of alchol hanging on this one at all. Very easy drinking here.

Overall, I really enjoyed this one. Not too heavy, and was just about right for a lunch time brew. I would do this one again with no issue. (1,190 characters)

Photo of largadeer
4/5  rDev -2.2%
look: 4 | smell: 4 | taste: 4 | feel: 4 | overall: 4

12 oz bottle shared by dyan - thanks, dogg.

Appearance: Tawny in color with no head whatsoever - completely still. Moderately hazy.

Smell: Funky red wine is the first thing that comes to mind. Takes on more of a red wine vinegar edge as it warms. Light to moderate acetic acid, and a bit of mineral water funk.

Taste & mouthfeel: Sour and drying, big oaky tannins. Nice balance of fruity sourness, acetic acid and drying tannins. Slightly mineral/metallic mid palate, with a touch of vanilla following. Carbonation is low, this is almost still, though it does little to hamper my enjoyment of the beer. Good stuff, but not quite as enjoyable as the regular La Roja. (668 characters)

Photo of AgentZero
4/5  rDev -2.2%
look: 4 | smell: 4 | taste: 4 | feel: 4 | overall: 4

Thanks to SpdKilz for sharing this one at my birthday tasting.

A - Rusty amber colored beer that didn't have much head on it.

S - There's a decent bit of tart cherry on the front and some oak. Little bit of funkiness to it as well.

T - Taste is pretty good. There's some cherry flavor that has held up decently as well as a bit of funk. Good sourness.

M - Medium bodied, carbonation is pretty active.

O - I thought this beer had some good taste and was fairly enjoyable to drink. Would drink again. (505 characters)

first ← prev | 1-25 | 26-50 | 51-75  | nextlast
La Roja - Grand Reserve from Jolly Pumpkin Artisan Ales
91 out of 100 based on 87 ratings.