La Roja - Grand Reserve - Jolly Pumpkin Artisan Ales

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La Roja - Grand ReserveLa Roja - Grand Reserve

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87 Reviews
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Reviews: 87
Hads: 216
Avg: 4.11
pDev: 18%
Wants: 295
Gots: 75 | 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.
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Reviews: 87 | Hads: 216
Photo of timtheenchanta
4.42/5  rDev +7.5%
look: 4.5 | smell: 5 | taste: 4 | feel: 4.5 | overall: 4.5

Very dark red with thin creamy head and webby lacing.

Very sour nose reminiscent of some grapes and some very prominent woody character that's not unlike vanilla and bourbon. Tart and fantastic smell.

The taste is less in your face than the smell. It's tart and woody like grape juice out of a wooden chalice. Hints of vanilla and bourbon and funky yeast (brett?) It finishes extremely dry and is a little bit thinner on the tongue than expected.

Fantastic beer that I would love to come across again. I haven't actually tried the La Roja yet although I can get it in Georgia and North Carolina. I was going to save this one to have them side by side but just couldn't wait. Many thanks to trbeer for this one.

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Photo of joshuaseresse
4.04/5  rDev -1.7%
look: 4 | smell: 5 | taste: 3.5 | feel: 4 | overall: 4

Shared this bottle at our recent La Crosse sour tasting. Thanks to GrandCruDrew for this bottle, thanks Drew! Not too sure which vintage it is but based on the characteristics of the bottle and label, the people at the brewery (I called them direct) said it was at least 3 years old, if not older (and they were thinking it was the 32 month aged vintage) Split with some upright BAs:

A - Caramel brown with light amber, yellow hints. No real head. Tiny bit of lacing and signs of carbonation.

S - Great smell! Caramel apple, grapes, bits of funk and slight hints of whiskey. Oaky and a bit of cherries.

T - Just a slight let down... :( The flavor is a bit watery. Hints of whiskey, funk, cherries and oak.

M - Smooth and a bit thick. No real carbonation.

O - Well, I'm really glad that I got to try this and am really curious as to the other vintages but I'm OK with not seeking this vintage again. Don't get me wrong, the smell was AWESOME but the flavor was a bit of a let down and made me a little sad. Oh well...but thanks again for the hookup Drew!

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Photo of StaEva
3.37/5  rDev -18%
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.

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Photo of BigDaddyWil
3.03/5  rDev -26.3%
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.

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Photo of biga7346
4.62/5  rDev +12.4%
look: 4.5 | smell: 5 | taste: 4.5 | feel: 4.5 | overall: 4.5

Poured into a JP snifter

A - Very still, little to no head, a deep crimson rusty color, rubyish and turbid.

N - Pie cherries, old wood but very spritzy like a white wine, a rich suggestion of white pepper, charred oak; it's a very inviting smell and the JP brett aroma is nearly overpowering accented with some nutty, tart cheese aromas. There is some fruit-like qualities like lemon zest, very sour cherries.

T - Very smooth and carbonated, rolls off the palate like champagne; tart cherries and lemon zest up front, definitely not cloying in the sourness, the regular La Roja I think is almost a little more tart than this. There is some fruit juice like qualities and blackberries, a perfectly placed amount of carbonation; the oakiness and tannins is muted for just a really enjoyable, refreshing yet slightly drying sour beer.

D - Damn good stuff

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Photo of goethean
4.31/5  rDev +4.9%
look: 5 | smell: 4 | taste: 4.5 | feel: 4.5 | overall: 4

Purchased from the brewery in July '07; consumed in December '07. Served in Duvel tulip glass, maybe in the mid 50s. Paired with homemade namak para (Indian snack food).

Color is dark copper. Mildly effervescent. Aroma is refreshing and there is an extremely tart note present, like the smell of rhubarb, or a freshly peeled bitter orange. An ethanol aroma is present.

Flavor is quite tart without being blatantly acetic/vinegary. Refreshing and yet substantial, with a sour cherry maltiness. Dark cocoa note in the finish. No hops bitterness, flavor or aroma detectable.

A solid, quality beer and a good value even at its price ($22/6 pk). I'm going to cellar my remaining bottles for several more months to see if it improves.

28 Apr 08 update: tried another few bottles and it is getting more vinegary.

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Photo of davedahl
4.12/5  rDev +0.2%
look: 4 | smell: 4.5 | taste: 4 | feel: 4 | overall: 4

This was a 12oz beer from "Batch 48".

Apperance: Zero head. A slightly hard pour gives a thin head that dissapears with a snap crackle pop. Beer is a nice ruby-hue'ed amber.

Smell: Definite funk in the nose straight off the bat. Berries in the middle ... rasberries? cherries? can't put my finger on it...earthy but an all around refreshing aroma.

Taste: Immideatly hit with the JP sourfunk. Niiice. More cherries in the middle (similar to aroma) and slight spice/cinnamon on finish.

Mouthfeel: Tart but balanced with slight sweetness and slight acid bite. Clean finish.

Great stuff.

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Photo of bigman147
4.35/5  rDev +5.8%
look: 4.5 | smell: 4.5 | taste: 4.5 | feel: 4 | overall: 4

Appearance: Pours amber almost pinkish with very solid sticky head that slowing faded to an odd lacing.

Aroma: Smells of grape wine and bourbon. Slight funky tart cherry or ripe fruit with a sherry alcohol note.

Taste: Drying and astringent. Tart apple or lemon. Surprisingly refreshing with a yeasty wheaty character. Alcohol aroma doesn't lend itself to a huge alcohol note on the palate.

Mouthfeel: Tart (astringent) with drying end. Excellent representation of style.

For drinkability, this is not something that you would sit around and session with. It was a nice tart after dinner beer. Warming alcohol and bourbon/sherry notes really make this beer.

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Photo of dbONE
4.42/5  rDev +7.5%
look: 4 | smell: 4.5 | taste: 4.5 | feel: 4 | overall: 4.5

Poured form a capped belgian style bottle into a large belgian glass.
The head is a beautiful off white with good retention and nice lacing as the glass empites. The color emerging from the pour is a deep amber with a shade of red hiding throughout. The picks up first on the sourness followed shortly by slight cinnimon and cardamon hints. Caramel also comes through.
The palette gets a wallup of sourness. Imagine eating a grannysmith caramel covered apple at the fair. With a showing of vanilla and oak the spice is in force in the back as it dries up init sour wood.
My parents live in Dexter and I havn't forgiven them for not telling about Jolly Pumpkin when I visited a few years ago.

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Photo of dzni
4.3/5  rDev +4.6%
look: 4.5 | smell: 4.5 | taste: 4.5 | feel: 3.5 | overall: 4

A - Beautiful amber with good head that dissipates rather quickly
S - Sour, lemon, banana, bready/wheat, strawberry
T - cherry/strawberry, lemony sourness, spice, hoppiness
M - Medium bodied, tiny hoppiness
D - Goes down pretty easy, but alcohol sneaks up on you. This is a pretty sour beer, which I love! Some people may not like sour beers like this, but I find them really refreshing; and this one is particularly interesting.

Poured into a tulip glass.

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Photo of jbtice0315
4.47/5  rDev +8.8%
look: 4 | smell: 4.5 | taste: 5 | feel: 4.5 | overall: 3.5

Got to taste this 08 beer at a hombrewers Christmas party.

One of the most delicious and sour beers I've ever had. The sour will definitely knock your socks off, but it was amazing at the same time.

Had a wonderful nose.

After a few sips I could feel the lactic acid dissolving my entire mouth.

Loved it and glad that I had the chance to try it.

Would definitely have purchase some if I could get my hands on it.

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Photo of BigShel
4.65/5  rDev +13.1%
look: 4.5 | smell: 4.5 | taste: 5 | feel: 4 | overall: 4.5

Well I have had this brew on my personal wish list for quite some time. I am happy to say it was well worth the wait.

Taste- Sour but not sweet like some fruit lambics can be. Lightly fruity with some apple and cherry. A good amount of vinegar but not so much to be off putting. Toasty with caramel and vanilla on the finish. The flavor really develops as the beer warms.

Appearance- Rusty reddish brown with a decent lacy head. It most resembles a raw cider. Plenty or carbonation, enough to rattle my 4 oz stopper placed on top to preserve the taste. The head was off white and persistent more than I expected for this type of brew.

Nose- Bourbon, Honey, Vanilla, Vinegar, fruit, Light spice.

Overall I give this beauty 4.5 out of 5.0

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La Roja - Grand Reserve from Jolly Pumpkin Artisan Ales
91 out of 100 based on 87 ratings.