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Noel De Calabaza - Jolly Pumpkin Artisan Ales

Not Rated.
Noel De CalabazaNoel De Calabaza

Displayed for educational use only; do not reuse.

868 Ratings
no score

(send 'em beer!)
Ratings: 868
Reviews: 395
rAvg: 4.03
pDev: 11.91%
Wants: 61
Gots: 141 | FT: 10
Brewed by:
Jolly Pumpkin Artisan Ales visit their website
Michigan, United States

Style | ABV
Belgian Strong Dark Ale |  9.00% ABV

Availability: Winter

Notes/Commercial Description:
"Belgian Christmas Ale aged in oak barrels."

(Beer added by: BeerBeing on 10-21-2007)
Beer: Ratings & Reviews
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Ratings: 868 | Reviews: 395 | Display Reviews Only:
Photo of tectactoe
4/5  rDev -0.7%

tectactoe, Apr 24, 2014
Photo of marleyr
4.75/5  rDev +17.9%

marleyr, Apr 24, 2014
Photo of afsdan
4.5/5  rDev +11.7%

afsdan, Apr 23, 2014
Photo of Burt
3.75/5  rDev -6.9%

Burt, Apr 23, 2014
Photo of dangriff
4.75/5  rDev +17.9%

dangriff, Apr 20, 2014
Photo of nmann08
3.75/5  rDev -6.9%

nmann08, Apr 13, 2014
Photo of StoutHunter
4.24/5  rDev +5.2%
look: 4 | smell: 4.25 | taste: 4.25 | feel: 4.25 | overall: 4.25

I picked up a bottle of Jolly Pumpkin's Noel De Calabaza a few months ago for $13.99 at The Lager Mill. I had this beer awhile ago and I don't remember much about and I thought I should revisit it and it give it a proper review, so lets see how it goes. Bottled on 10/12/13. Poured from a brown 750ml bottle into a Jolly Pumpkin Snifter.

A- The label looks nice, it's got a nice seasonal look to it and I think it's fairly eye catching. It poured a murky dark brown color that had a red tint to it and it took on more of a dark red color when held to the light with two and half fingers worth of creamy off white head that died down down to a thin ring that stayed till the end and it left some spotty and patchy lacing behind. This was a pretty good looking beer, I have no complaints.

S- The aroma starts off with a higher amount of medium sweetness followed by a nice fruity aroma being the first to show up, there's some berry and other fruity aromas showing up but it seems like it's the tart cherry that show up the most. Up next comes the signature Jolly Pumpkin yeast that add just enough funky and light barnyard like aromas to this beer and it mixes with a nice noticeable oak and woody aromas with a light amount of spices showing up towards the end. This beer had a very nice aroma, I really liked how well the fruity aromas worked with the funky yeast and barrel aspects.

T- The taste seems to be fairly similar to the aroma and it starts off with a higher amount of medium sweetness followed by that same fruity aspect that I got in the aroma with the berry and tart cherry like aromas sticking out the most followed by a higher amount of medium tartness. Up next comes that funky Jolly Pumpkin yeast which shows up just enough and it's followed by the right amount of noticeable oak and woody barrel flavors. Towards the end I get a nice malt flavor with some toasted malts coming through along with a slight spicy flavor and there was some slightly lingering tartness, funky yeast and fruity flavors in the aftertaste. This was a very nice tasting beer, I thought the balance was really nice, no single aspect was too overpowering.

M- Smooth, not too acidic, a little refreshing, crisp, a little prickly, medium bodied with a higher amount of medium carbonation bordering one being highly carbonated. This bee had a very nice mouthfeel, I have no complaints at all.

Overall I thought this was a very nice beer and I thought it was a pretty good example of a sour, BA has it listed as a Belgian Dark Strong Ale, but other then the light toasted malt aspect I don't find this beer to match up with the style, but I think it fits pretty well as a Sour or American Wild Ale. This beer had good drinkability, it was smooth, pretty crisp, a little prickly, a little refreshing, not too acidic, not too filing and the taste did a nice job at holding my attention, Drinking a whole bottle might be a little too much for me, but I think splitting it with someone is perfect. The flavor doesn't really come off as too winter seasonal like and I think this beer would be nice to have in the summer. What I like the most about this beer was the balance, nothing was too overpowering and the flavors seemed to work pretty well together. There wasn't anything that I disliked about this beer, I thought it was great just the way it is and I can't think of anything to improve it. I would buy this beer again and I wouldn't mind keeping a couple bottles around in the cellar. I would recommend this to anybody who like sours or American Wild Ales. All in all I was a little impressed with this beer and I'm glad I decided to revisit it, I don't know why I don't remember much about it from the first time I had it, I find it to be a pretty memorable beer now. This isn't my favorite Jolly Pumpkin beer, but it's up there as one of the better ones I've had from them and i would say it's above average as far as Wild Ales go. Great job guys, this was a really nice beer, keep up the great work.

StoutHunter, Apr 09, 2014
Photo of CWhite
4.75/5  rDev +17.9%

CWhite, Mar 30, 2014
Photo of Filabee
4.25/5  rDev +5.5%

Filabee, Mar 29, 2014
Photo of JohnnieNepal
4/5  rDev -0.7%

JohnnieNepal, Mar 28, 2014
Photo of yourefragile
3.75/5  rDev -6.9%

yourefragile, Mar 26, 2014
Photo of oso
3.25/5  rDev -19.4%

oso, Mar 18, 2014
Photo of BeerBuzzGuy
4.25/5  rDev +5.5%

BeerBuzzGuy, Mar 15, 2014
Photo of stevec32
3.75/5  rDev -6.9%

stevec32, Mar 14, 2014
Photo of magictacosinus
4.16/5  rDev +3.2%
look: 4 | smell: 4 | taste: 4.25 | feel: 4 | overall: 4.25

This was one of the many beers poured at the December Albany Taproom bottle share. Not sure who brought this, but thanks! Poured out of a 22oz bottle into a tulip glass. My first Jolly Pumpkin beer ever, too!

I believe we had the Alpha Klaus a little bit before this one, and as far as I'm concerned, both of them were nearly exactly the same in appearance. The only difference, of course, is the viscosity and yeasty appearance of this beer. Otherwise, it's equally opaque, with dark amber tones, as well as an off-white creamy head that temporarily coats the top of the glass before dissipating into a modest ring. Leaves behind no lacing, sadly, but still looks pretty appetizing.

Smells a lot like your typical spiced quad, but there's the commonplace (allegedly, anyways) funk that this brewery is known for right away, as well as some tart elements. Dark fruit are at the front, but of the under-ripe, tart variety: green plums, currants, raisins, figs, and at the finish sweet molasses. Afterwards, there's a leathery, barnyard aroma that appears in an unexpected manner, melding with notes of black pepper, ginger peel, nutmeg, and allspice. Roasted nuts are at the front as well, although it does seem that the highlight of this beer lies in the sour fruit notes overall, as well as in the spice profile used. Pretty unique stuff - definitely quite restrained for what it aims to be.

The flavor is a little bit more varied, however - often to its benefit, but sometimes to its detriment, especially when it gets progressively funkier and leathery. At first, there's notes of dark cherries, sour plums, blackcurrant, and figs. Roasted chestnuts are at the front, with some light pine, molasses, and tobacco. Leather, especially of the slightly charred kind, starts to come in over time, as does these unexpected lactic funky notes that make the beer taste creamier and sweeter, yet at the same time a little funky and bizarre. The finish is filled with more of the spices, mainly of cinnamon and nutmeg, with some light chocolate notes. This is pretty yeasty, but it's surprisingly crisp and filling, with a sweet flavor from the malts that melds well with the spices and funky fruity flavors. Carbonation could be a bit better, but it definitely lives out to be the decadent, albeit, strange beer it's supposed to be.

This was definitely one of the better ones of the night, and a lot of it owes to the tremendous balance given between the malts and spices as they fight over the rapidly shifting funky yeasty notes. This is definitely what the old school Xmas beers must have tasted like in the era of farmhouse ales. The results are very intriguing, and done quite well. I'm looking forward to trying more from Jolly Pumpkin.

magictacosinus, Mar 10, 2014
Photo of Buck_Jones
4/5  rDev -0.7%

Buck_Jones, Mar 09, 2014
Photo of ToddHolder
4/5  rDev -0.7%

ToddHolder, Mar 04, 2014
Photo of Danny1217
4/5  rDev -0.7%

Danny1217, Mar 02, 2014
Photo of mwilbur
3.7/5  rDev -8.2%
look: 4 | smell: 4 | taste: 3.5 | feel: 3.75 | overall: 3.75

Poured from 750 mL bottle into snifter.
A: Pours a very dark cola brown with 3 inch light tan head. Excellent retention and lacing.
S: Dark dried fruit (raisin, fig), sweet caramel malt, mild chocolate, warm spice (cinnamon) and clove.
T: Berries (esp. strawberry), cinnamon, tart Brett, clove, soft caramel malt, and dark dried fruit (raisin). Interesting amalgam, but a bit jumbled.
M: Medium body. Sweet with a dry finish. Moderately tart throughout.
D: A decent brew with some interesting components. Not top notch for style however.

mwilbur, Mar 01, 2014
Photo of leprechaunandfatman
3.75/5  rDev -6.9%

leprechaunandfatman, Mar 01, 2014
Photo of angeepangie
2.25/5  rDev -44.2%

angeepangie, Feb 28, 2014
Photo of mikejonze
3.25/5  rDev -19.4%

mikejonze, Feb 27, 2014
Photo of ryanpj
4/5  rDev -0.7%

ryanpj, Feb 26, 2014
Photo of beergeekteacher
4.75/5  rDev +17.9%

beergeekteacher, Feb 20, 2014
Noel De Calabaza from Jolly Pumpkin Artisan Ales
90 out of 100 based on 868 ratings.