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Bam Noire | Jolly Pumpkin Artisan Ales

very good
343 Reviews
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Bam NoireBam Noire

Brewed by:
Jolly Pumpkin Artisan Ales
Michigan, United States | website

Style: Saison / Farmhouse Ale

Alcohol by volume (ABV): 4.30%

Availability: Rotating

Notes / Commercial Description:
No notes at this time.

Added by FightingEntropy on 09-01-2007

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Reviews: 343 | Ratings: 837
Photo of Neorebel
4.32/5  rDev +14.6%
look: 4 | smell: 4.5 | taste: 4.5 | feel: 4 | overall: 4

Appearance is similar to a 'bock' beer, in my opinion, a translucent auburn hue. The aroma was interesting, reminding me of pot pourri, and apple cinnamon pie. For the flavor, I found it to be pleasantly sour and tart, like apple cider vinegar, and with plenty of that farmhouse funky yeast taste. It was very fizzy, light-bodied, and crisp, almost enough to make me pucker in the end. The only slight criticism I had was that I noticed a slight vegetal/herbal hint intermingled deep within the other flavors that I was not so sure about. I definitely want to have another though, and would highly recommend this to those that like sours.

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Photo of Phelps
3.18/5  rDev -15.6%
look: 4 | smell: 3.5 | taste: 3 | feel: 3 | overall: 3

Enjoyed in a tulips at World of Beer tulip. This here's a dark saison made with the usual JP yeast.

Deep copper, mostly opaque. A two-finger head of light tan leaves thick spatters of lace.

In the nose, I get a touch of sweet balsamic mixed with dark fruit. A hint of toast, some lemon, some caramel, some raisin.

Very different flavor. Tart notes are a whisper, a memory. Just a touch, with a little pepper and cracker. Very dry throughout. Could use more oomph at the finish.

High carbonation. Pinching. Light, fizzy, soft. Whipped as it moves.

Needs more strength. Weak.

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Photo of Number45forever
3.21/5  rDev -14.9%
look: 4 | smell: 3 | taste: 3 | feel: 3.5 | overall: 3.5

Heard some intriguing things about this beer, was looking forward to it. Poured from bottle dated 1/23/12...so this bottle is about 10 months old.

Appearance: amber, very clear, light passes through without issue. Appears to be a filtered beer..surprising in a saison? But, a good looking beer. Almost like a hoppy amber IPA in appearance.

Smell: Tart, some slight funk and slight dark fruits. Not getting any kind of pepper or spices. Nice.

Taste: Much more funk than the smell. Some tartness, some cherry taste which I wasn't expecting in the style. Tons of funk, almost missing more sourness to balance it out. If you like the hay/horse blanket, taste - this is your beer!

Mouthfeel: Nice. Prickly carbonation, but I could have used a touch more carbonation.

Overall. Solid. Not bad at all. A good, funky saison. Will I get through the whole 22oz? Shouldn't be an issue. Not sure I'll be chasing this one down in the future though.

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Photo of metter98
3.78/5  rDev +0.3%
look: 4 | smell: 3.5 | taste: 4 | feel: 3 | overall: 4

A: The beer is hazy brownish red in color. It poured with a half finger high beige head that has excellent retention properties.
S: There are light to moderate aromas of oak and sourness in the nose along with hints of cherries. The cherries become stronger as the beer warms up.
T: the taste is a little sour nd tart and has light notes of cherries and dark fruits.
M: It feels light- to medium-bodied on the palate and has a low to moderate amount of carbonation.
O: this is a very interesting beer that is very easy to drink and quite flavorful for being lighter in body.

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Photo of OSUBeerStudent
2.52/5  rDev -33.2%
look: 4 | smell: 2 | taste: 2.5 | feel: 3 | overall: 2.5

Bottled 10/18/2011, into a Lost Abbey glass.

A - pretty nice if not spectacular. Fairly thick head on pour, sticks around reasonably well but only a thin layer. Nondescript dark brown body.

S - faint. Smell is some light lactic/acetic acid, very tiny bit of funk. Nothing at all from malts or hops. Slight bit of grass in the background. Mediocre at best.

T - acidity, again a bit of funk in the taste. Again basically no hop/malt presence at all. Overwhelming impression is dry and slightly acidic, with very little else. It's just not very pleasant.

M - extremely dry, highly carbonated. Bone-dry. The carbonation is too high for it to be easy to drink, though.

Overall, this is not a very good beer. It has little to no complexity, little/no malt presence to play with the acidity, light funk even after being a year old, pretty one-note acidity. Disappointing.

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Photo of Murrhey
3.47/5  rDev -8%
look: 3 | smell: 3.5 | taste: 3.5 | feel: 3.5 | overall: 3.5

Poured from a 1pt 9.4 fl oz bottle into a pint glass. Bottled 7/12/11.

A- One finger cream-colored head, middling retention. Auburn color with high clarity. Good looking carbonation and some sticky vestiges of lacing.

S- Brown sugar, raisins, dates, some caramel, gingerbread, molasses, cinnamon. Very complex smell that points out all sorts of sugary and dark treats.

T- Acidic and tart. Some of those dark fruits in the smell appear here as well. Soda pop taste with some dark but mild malts and a bit of a hop-oil tie-in. Some strange flavor (not unappealing) I can't put my finger on.

M- Bubbly and medium bodied. Wet finish.

O- Above average, but not a knockout. I am excited to try more Jolly Pumpkin Ales though.

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Photo of mrfrancis
3.68/5  rDev -2.4%
look: 4 | smell: 3.5 | taste: 3.5 | feel: 4 | overall: 4

A: Pours a ruddy brownish amber with a creamy white head.

S: Aromas of cider vinegar, roasted grain, must, oak, and pickle brine are fleeting on the nose.

T: Notes of cider vinegar, roasted grain, must, oak, pickle brine, unripened vine fruits, minerals, spices, and slightly burnt toast wash across the palate. The finish is clipped with notes of oak, must, roasted grain, and vinegar.

M: Light-to-medium in body, dry, and chalky. Carbonation is firm and crisp. Quite drinkable, but feels a bit heavier than it is.

O: I'm not a fan of Jolly Pumpkin's regular Bam Biere, but this version is far from bad. It's not one of my favorite Jolly Pumpkin offerings, but I am glad I tried this one. I could see myself serving this as a table beer at fall gatherings.

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Photo of facundoCNB
3.55/5  rDev -5.8%
look: 3.5 | smell: 3.5 | taste: 3.5 | feel: 4 | overall: 3.5

an interesting dark reddish/brown (almost black) pour with about 2 inches of frothy off white head leaving behind copious amounts of lacing. smells like a typical saison (pepper, funky, lemon peel, cilantro) with a very unique herbal smell in the finish that i can't figure out! a smoked flavor.. slightly sour, hints of chocolate, spicy black pepper, a bit tart/sour like lemon.. this is a very strange tasting beer.. i can imagine this pairing PERFECTLY with a piece of grilled fish or maybe chicken.
the carbonation is constant, body is very light.. the first few sips felt almost as if i were sipping on flavored air.. threw me off a little bit honestly, you see the dark ale, you taste a saison..you feel a frothy head which feels like it's disapperaing as soon as you touch it.. almost like cotton candy. i'm giving it a high score for its uniqueness.
overall, i think i scored this a bit higher than i should have, but i can justify it by saying this is my first ever dark saison. to me, it was very unique - even though i personally feel like it wasn't one of my favorite beers, i scored it a little higher for that reason. don't get me wrong - it's tasty, and looks/feels great, but i'm not TOO impressed considering the price tag on this one. it's also my first beer from this brewery, and if this is any sign about how the rest of their beers are, i can't really see myself spending close to $20 a 750ml bottle again.

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Photo of UCLABrewN84
3.67/5  rDev -2.7%
look: 3.5 | smell: 4 | taste: 3.5 | feel: 4 | overall: 3.5

Batch 927. Bottled 10/25/2011.

Pours a murky brown with a foamy khaki head that settles to a film on top of the beer. Small bubbly patches of lace form quickly fade off the sides of the glass. Smell is sour and tart with some fruit and spice aromas. Taste is pretty much the same with the spices lingering slightly on the finish. This beer has a very high level of carbonation with a very crisp and prickly mouthfeel. Overall, this is a pretty good beer but the flavor is a bit thin and I think it smells better than it tastes.

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Photo of jrenihan
3.8/5  rDev +0.8%
look: 4 | smell: 4 | taste: 3.5 | feel: 4 | overall: 4

Bottled Nov 21, 2011

Beer is very dark brown, hints of red. Large off-white head. Decent retention.

A bit sour in the nose, cherry, oak. Good.

Taste is a bit sour, roasted malt, brett, oak, a bit of fruit. Tastes good, though not super complex. Oak is particularly strong in the finish.

Light bodied, low to moderate carbonation. A bit thin but good. An easy drinker.

Overall, pretty good. A bit thin in terms of flavour, but enjoyable. The mix of roasted malt and sour is not common and is a nice change, but isn't a perfect combo.

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Photo of champ103
3.35/5  rDev -11.1%
look: 3.5 | smell: 3.5 | taste: 3 | feel: 3 | overall: 4

A: Pours a murky brown color. A massive beige head forms that sticks around forever. Rings of lace are left behind.
S: Funky, earthy slightly fruity, some wood aromas. Pretty much just that unmistakeable JP yeast. Which in and of itself is something I really enjoy.
T: Follows the nose. Funky, earthy, fruity. There is a bit more acidic sourness than in the nose. Besides the color, this could be packaged as generic JP beer X.
M/D: A medium and dry body. A bit under carbonated and thin though. Very easy to drink. The bomber will be gone in no time.

This seems like the basic, base Jolly Pumpkin. The completely unique JP yeast is very apparent. Just not among their elite IMO.

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Photo of VncentLIFE
3.92/5  rDev +4%
look: 4 | smell: 4.5 | taste: 3.5 | feel: 4 | overall: 4

found this little gem on sale today at Total Wine.

I see a more brown than black body with a thin white head. I like it.

I love the way every single Jolly Pumpkin beer smells. Strong oaky smell with a bit of Brett funk. Hint of Belgian candy sweetness.Very slight hint of roasted malts muddled in there somewhere Smells much more sweet than other funky saisons.

Now this is a unique JP beer. Very light and flaky. Sourness really isnt pronounced as is with their other offerings. a bit more shallow than the other JP offerings. I get more of the malt here. Light body reminds me of GI Matilda. I can feel the strong roast of the malt, yet it does nothing to the body at all. Its like watered down, oddly. The oak barrel is dry, yet refreshing.

I like it in terms of drinkability (which is awesome), but in terms of overall flavor its a bit underwhelming. I think Ill have the rest of the bottle.

3 words to sum it up - oaky, roasty, light.

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Photo of StonedTrippin
4.3/5  rDev +14.1%
look: 4 | smell: 4 | taste: 4.5 | feel: 4 | overall: 4.5

this is definitely not rated high enough on here. a perfect example of a dark saison, bordering on a sour. beautiful pour, light translucent brown with a lasting tan head. smells like brett, lots of funk, perfect nose for a saison. flavor really features the brett, the darker malts used, and some really interesting yeast. almost a wild ale. maybe it is a wild ale actually. seems like it. i like the dark malts in this beer, not a common style as far as i know. feel is good, a little thin on the body and on the alcohol content too, it could have been like a 7.2% beer pretty easily, and for the price maybe it should have been. still, its light and drinkable despite its complexity, the carbonation is good, and the aftertaste is delicious. overall this might not be as good as the la roja, but its a realy good beer. jolly pumpkin is moving up my list.

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Photo of daledeee
3.85/5  rDev +2.1%
look: 4 | smell: 4 | taste: 3.5 | feel: 4.5 | overall: 4

I thought I had tried this one, but no.

A 750 ml bottle poured very dark brown with very large off white head.

Nose is really appealing at first but becomes less intense. Very funky with hints of dark fruit and black licorice.

Taste is quite hoppy, in a Belgian way. Once again, there are dark notes such as prunes or raisin. Very carbonated and a dry finish. This is a distinctive beer. As usual, Jolly Pumpkin makes good beer.

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Photo of BMMillsy
3.64/5  rDev -3.4%
look: 3.75 | smell: 3.5 | taste: 3.5 | feel: 4.25 | overall: 3.75

Forgot to rate this when I had it. Bottle at the brewpub in A2. Pours a dark brown with white head. Aroma of breadth malts with lots of yeast, candy sugar, dark fruits. and ever so slight hints of chocolate. Flavor follows with dark fruits and lots of yeast. Plenty of carbonation and pretty easy drinking. Was expecting something a little more flavorful but overall a nice beer.

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Photo of Auracom
2.82/5  rDev -25.2%
look: 3 | smell: 3.5 | taste: 2.5 | feel: 3 | overall: 2.5

On-tap at Poor Phil's. 10 oz. poured into a tulip on April 29th, 2012.

A - Deep violet-mahogany coloring. Soapy, clingy, one-finger white head. Good retention and lacing.

S - Smells like a soft sour brown ale. Light sour cherries, granny apple skins, raspberry vinegar. Quite simple.

T - Unfortunately it's pretty laid back here too. Carbonation, vinous, herbal sourness, and a light bready malt note in the aftertaste.

M - Light body, high carbonation, semi-dry finish.

D - This is certainly sessionable, but it's just not got enough of a flavor profile. It's somewhat unique and more acidic than I'd expect for a Saison.

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Photo of yamar68
3.87/5  rDev +2.7%
look: 4 | smell: 4.5 | taste: 3.5 | feel: 3.5 | overall: 4

Poured from 750 to brandy snifter:

Murky mid brown body with a couple finger of off-white, nearly pinkish head - great lacing, nice looking beer.

The nose is quite floral. Raspberries, white wine, yeast, bits of spicy clove.

The taste is entirely unique - barnyard funk, some cereal, slightly sour afterburn. Much more reserved than the nose would suggest. Nice and dry.

Overall, this is a nice, fresh, easy drinking dinner beer. Can't say I'll buy again though.

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Photo of Suds
3.67/5  rDev -2.7%
look: 3 | smell: 3.5 | taste: 4 | feel: 3.5 | overall: 3.5

This beer is a rich brown-ruddy red colored liquid with a thin, film-like light-tan head. The aroma, a spritzy, citric scent, has a fleeting hop character and a slight yeasty funk. Lemon, backed with a slight sugar scent, and a wood barrel smell are also notable. The taste is refreshingly tart, with a subdued sweetness and malt underbelly. Wine-line in the finish, which is crisp and a bit effervescent...drier than expected, given the foretaste. Not bad at all.

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Photo of SickGnar
3.65/5  rDev -3.2%
look: 4 | smell: 4 | taste: 3.5 | feel: 3.5 | overall: 3.5

A: Holy foam over. Lost a few ounces. Dark chestnut brown. Haze with some floaties settled to the bottom. Very plentiful carbonation is “only” noticeable in the way plentiful foam. Huge, very light tan mountain of foam. Settles to a thick cap that retains very well & leaves a nice bit of lace – especially at the top of the glass.

S: Lots & lots of forward dark fruit – cherry, tart raspberries, plums, & even a hint of dates. Sour & tart note with some background minerally sweetness. Ghost hint of vanilla? Is there oak in this? Touch of yeasty esters. A very intriguing nose with just fair strength.

T: Fruit (& flavor overall) is mostly restricted to very tart cherries – almost choke cherries. Strong dose of sour to go along with the tartness. Anything else is just a hint. Some unripe raspberries and unripe plum. Faint minerally sweetness. Touch of roasty and toasty malts. Earthy yeast. Ghost bit of herbal. Very robust & intense in a narrow way.

M: Light body. Firm, active, and expansive carbonation. Very nearly fizzy. Very attenuated with big pucker. Lots of sour / tart drying. Astringent a bit in the finish. Understandable given the age, but this is very bone dry and drying. Might as well put some alum in your mouth. Exceedingly drying & bitingly cleansing.

D: I’m sure it had more going on when fresh, but now it is fairly one-dimensional. Sort of a light & thin & tart Flanders. Not that it is bad, it is very interesting with lots of flavor in a sharp profile. But it is a bit too much to enjoy drinking by itself. If you have a bottle of this that is this old then try it with some dinner. By itself the carbonation & dryness take even the low abv right to your head. (plus the intense tart/sour flavor). Jeez, maybe its best use is to share it with friends as an aperitif or digestif with a good meal. It would be good for that.

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Photo of MBACoach
3.37/5  rDev -10.6%
look: 3.5 | smell: 4 | taste: 3 | feel: 3 | overall: 3.5

Poured on draft. Mild head that dissipated quickly. Very light brown in color.

Very nice funky aroma with some hidden oak. Definitely pick up the wild yeast.

Great flavor for what it is - a session farmhouse.

Very light on the palate. For sure the lightest sour I've had.

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Photo of claspada
4.05/5  rDev +7.4%
look: 4 | smell: 4 | taste: 4 | feel: 4.5 | overall: 4

Pours a dark reddish-brown color with a small off-white head.

Aromas begin with some oak, mild sourness, a bit of roast and a light bit of funk.

The taste pulls back quite a bit and shows oak and funk more than anything else. The light roast that I got in the aromas are not apparent here.

The mouthfeel is medium bodied with medium carbonation. Drinks really solid for such a low ABV beer so high marks for that.

Overall a great treat to find on draft anywhere, regardless of the season. Quite sessionable for the ABV and quite falvorful as well. Nothing revolutionary here, just a really solid dark saison.

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Photo of elNopalero
4.05/5  rDev +7.4%
look: 4 | smell: 4 | taste: 4 | feel: 4.5 | overall: 4

This is from batch 927, bottled 10/25/2011.

This pours an amber-red color with tight lacing. Clear, with no sediment. Tart aroma with hints of sour cherries rounding it out. Nuanced flavor, nothing really stands out or overpowers the palate (more accurately). I get the sour cherries and an earthy, oaky tannic taste. Nice mouthfeel, with an effervescence that keeps it light. The sour/tartness isn’t strong but it makes its presence known, and it has enough character to keep it interesting. An enjoyable sipper on a warm spring day.

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Photo of korguy123
3.75/5  rDev -0.5%
look: 4 | smell: 4 | taste: 3.5 | feel: 3.5 | overall: 4

A- Deep, dark, murky brown with a purple/red hue. Finger width egg shell head with decent lacing.

S- Lemon and grass earthiness. Strong notes of cherries and grape juice. Hints of brown sugar.

T- Lemon, grass and cherries with a watery grape juice. Not as sweet as the nose.

M- Watery and tart. Light carbonation.

O- Very good, much more complex than Bam Biere. Wonderful treat.

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Photo of SHODriver
4/5  rDev +6.1%
look: 4 | smell: 4 | taste: 4 | feel: 4 | overall: 4

A: pours a deep brown with a finger of fluffy not quite white head
S: smells fruity with hints of lemon, some spice, a bit of dark malt as well, and sort of yeasty. Smells good to me
T: Starts off a bit bready with a small bit of funk, a twinge of sourness mingles with some fruity esters, a touch of roasted flavor from the malt towards the end finished with a slightly sour and delightfully roasty finish
M: prickly carb but kind of thin. For a farmhouse it's fine
O: very enjoyable. Fairly new bottle but I needed to clear out room in the fridge, sour flavors were nice but not heavy handed.

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Photo of willseph
2.87/5  rDev -23.9%
look: 3 | smell: 3.5 | taste: 2.5 | feel: 2.5 | overall: 3

Part of a mini-tasting with some friends, enjoyed about halfway through the night. Bottled in October 2010, drank January 2012.

A - Poured a dark, cloudy, medium brown color with a half-finger of head. Left a bit of lacing all the way through the beer.

S - Lots of wet wood and funk, but also sour cherries. Reminded me of most any Flanders beer.

T - This was pretty underwhelming to me. The predominant taste was of soda water, meaning there wasn't much of a taste. There was some sourness and lemon, but nothing really noteworthy.

M - Very, very fizzy. Almost too fizzy, which might have influenced how it tasted like soda water.

O - I normally really dig JP beers, but this is near the bottom of my list. I wouldn't say it was a bad beer, just not what I normally expect or enjoy.

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Bam Noire from Jolly Pumpkin Artisan Ales
85 out of 100 based on 343 ratings.