Vinosynth Red
Upland Brewing Company

Vinosynth RedVinosynth Red
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American Wild Ale
Ranked #308
Ranked #2,616
4.19 | pDev: 7.64%
Upland Brewing Company
Indiana, United States
Vinosynth RedVinosynth Red
Notes: An Oliver Winery Collaboration. These collaboration bottles are a unique combination of Upland Sours aged on Indiana grown grapes. Vinosynth Red is aged on Catawba grapes from the Oliver Creekside Vineyards.

50% Sour Reserve and 50% Malefactor Flanders-style red ale aged on Catawba grapes. Native north american variety, known for making jams and jellies, and distinct juicy, fruity, exotic wines. Malefactor was blended with Sour Reserve to develop more body, mild bourbon barrel character, and layered acidity to complement the Catawba's innate sweet, fruity notes.
Reviews: 21 | Ratings: 181 | Log in to view all ratings and sort
Photo of rudzud
4.01/5  rDev -4.3%
look: 4 | smell: 4.25 | taste: 4 | feel: 4 | overall: 3.75

Shared with JLindros.

A - Poured into a Kate the Great tulip a slightly hazy strawberry hue with a thin head that fades to leave light wisps.

S - Aromas of vinegar, red berries, big tart notes, light oak, faint lactic acid.

T - Taste is similar to the nose, big vinegar notes bright red berries, big acidity here!

M - Mouthfeel is lightly carbonated, crisp, not overly flemmy.

O - Overall this was a very solid beer with good acid undertones. Really solid.

Serving Type: bottle

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Photo of jlindros
4.06/5  rDev -3.1%
look: 4 | smell: 4.25 | taste: 4 | feel: 4 | overall: 4

Thanks to rudzud
Decent fizzy head fades quickly, to nothing, strawberry murky reddish color

Nose loads of sour funk and strawberry, tart sour berry, a bit of nice strawberry, bright

Taste brings loads of strawberry and tart generic berry, very acidic with a little funk, a bit of wine barrel, and tart acidity, sour malt

Mouth is med bod, big acidity with a little tartness sour

Overall eh, OK but not great

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Photo of JohnnyHopps
4.27/5  rDev +1.9%
look: 4.5 | smell: 4.25 | taste: 4.25 | feel: 4.25 | overall: 4.25

Appearance - The beer poured a rusty red color with an off white head.

Smell - Notes of Flanders melted with a Catawba grape nose.

Taste - At the front was a dry oaky Flanders ale with grape skin notes. The sweetness of the Catawba grapes come in the back. What an appropriate wrinkle in the style! The dry oakiness lingered nicely.

Mouthfeel - The carbonation was wuite noticeable, brushing away mich of the sweetness quickly.

Overall - By way of comparison, this is much better than Vinosynth White.

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Photo of mothman
4/5  rDev -4.5%
look: 4 | smell: 4 | taste: 4 | feel: 4 | overall: 4

Burnt orange color.

Lots of red grapes. Some acidity. Light tartness. Funk. Lemon. Oaky. Lots of wine flavors.

Medium bodied. Easy to drink compared to some of the other uplands.

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Photo of buschbeer
4.04/5  rDev -3.6%
look: 4.25 | smell: 4 | taste: 4 | feel: 4.25 | overall: 4

750 ML bottle
Served in a sour glass
Bottled 12-11-14

This beer pours a brilliant amber color with burnt orange highlights. It really doesn't give me any head. It bubbles as I pour but nothing sticks around.

It has a tart aroma. I can pick up on some grapes and a vinous smell.

The taste starts out sour. I can distinctly pick out wine as well as grape flavors. As it warms I pick up on some mild oak and bourbon flavors.

It has a light mouthfeel with a dry finish and prickly carbonation.

This is a nice sour that deepens in complexity as it warms.

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Photo of Sabtos
4/5  rDev -4.5%
look: 4 | smell: 4 | taste: 4 | feel: 4 | overall: 4

Almost acetic, but enjoyable enough while largely avoiding vinegar. It's tart and grapey, lightly funky, tanniny and vinous, with touches of oak. Mature, if a little too sour.

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Photo of cpetrone84
2.83/5  rDev -32.5%
look: 3 | smell: 2.5 | taste: 3 | feel: 3 | overall: 2.75

Pour is clear copper with a smaller amount of tight lightly tan head. Nose is a bit muddled, light fruity notes with some dusty brett and grain notes behind. Taste is a bit more integrated, fruits get berry like. Finish is lightly tart, brett is overshadowed, barrel has a presence mid to late palate. Body is bit thicker than light, strong carb, fruits linger.

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Photo of Gear54
4.39/5  rDev +4.8%
look: 4 | smell: 4.25 | taste: 4.5 | feel: 4.25 | overall: 4.5

This was a bottle I got as per of the Upland Sour Lottery. From a 22oz Bomber into a tulip glass. Poured cold and allowed to warm over the course of an hour.

Pour is really really carbonated. I took of the twist cap over the cork and the cork its self started squeezing its way out of the bottle opening. First time I've ever see this! Once the cork was out I had a "beercano". Beer in the glass is a nice light pink color. Plenty of bubbles rising in the glass. No head retention.

Taste is exactly what I wanted out of an Upland Sour. Nice fruity taste. Raspberry jam and sweet red wine character. Still too much fizz. Nearly campaign like in carbonation and mouthfeel.

As beer warmed up the campaign fizziness faded and the wild cherry type sourness. This beer gets more funky with every sip as beer gets to serving temp and beyond. By the time this one finished it was a lovely blend of sweet fruity character of watermelon and cherry with medium bodied red wine charicter.

This beer gets dryer on the finish as temp increases. Also gets more drinkable as temp increases as well. I really enjoyed the experience of tasting this beer over the course of a few hours and watching the development of the flavors. If you get the chance to try Upland's sour beers make sure you take it.

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Photo of VelvetExtract
4.02/5  rDev -4.1%
look: 4.25 | smell: 4 | taste: 4 | feel: 4 | overall: 4

EBF sample. Ruddy color. Aroma was both sweet, vinous, barreled and tart. The flavor was also a mix of said descriptors. Acidic and lightly balsamic. I found the mixture of the grape & barrel to comes off as quite vinous. It was also earthy with balancing sweetness on the finish. Tart on the lips in the final moments.

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Photo of bennyman12
4.1/5  rDev -2.1%
look: 3.5 | smell: 4 | taste: 4.25 | feel: 4.25 | overall: 4

Appearance unimpressive. Copper colored whereas some ruby hue would have helped indicate red grape presence. Fizzy.
Smell generic pesto-based sour
Tastes not as sour as expected. Or desired. Fairly sweet but with some wine notes gracing the palate ever so slightly at the finish.
Good mouthfeel. Not thin.
Of the wine-beer hybrid sours I've had, this doesn't hold a candle to vin lee or the archer, but is better than lazy ballerina

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Photo of kojevergas
3.38/5  rDev -19.3%
look: 3.25 | smell: 3.25 | taste: 3.5 | feel: 3.5 | overall: 3.25

BOTTLE: Bottled 12-11-14. Batch v14. 750ml format. Brown glass. Black hood-and-wire cap over a cork.

Served cold into a tulip and allowed to warm over the course of consumption. Expectations are high given the brewery and its reputation for great sours. Reviewed live as a sour ale though the label notes that it's half Flanders Red.

HEAD: Audibly fizzy, reducing quickly (inside ~40 seconds), leaving no lacing. The champagne-like effervescence suggests a lively albeit possibly overcarbonated sparkling brew. A second pour reveals it's off-white in colour (with a khaki bend) and is rather thin.

BODY: Ample overactivate carbonation bubbles abound. The body is golden in colour, and translucent & semitransparent, with no visible yeast.

It's a nice look for a wild ale, but I expected more of a Flanders red ale appearance given its use in the blend. Far from unique or special, but I rather like the fizziness and activity of the beer.

AROMA: The fruit character is indeed jammy, but I don't pick up on any obvious grape character. It's more of a depleted currant or berry fruit, but it's vague and indistinct in the aroma - hard to peg down, but certainly not grape. Tartness and acidity is obvious, and I do pick up on some white wine-soaked oak character, but none of the bourbon character mentioned on the label. I don't get any whiskey-like spice, vanilla, coconut, etc. I'm curious how long the Sour Reserve portion was aged in bourbon barrels...I suspect not very long.

No overt hop notes are detectable, nor are any off-notes or is any booziness.

The jammy fruit is exciting, but I'm missing the characteristics I'd expect in a great Flanders Red (acetic acid/vinegar notes, rich white oak or foeder barrel character, subtle oxidation, cherry pie), as well as the grape and bourbon barrel notes advertised by the label. Still, I'm pleased by the absence of bourbon - which rarely works well in a fruited sour - and I much prefer the oak barrel presence I do pick up. I'm eager to try this, but the fruit could be more vivid and expressive, and the aroma doesn't suggest stellar depth of flavour.

Aromatic intensity is moderate.

TASTE & TEXTURE: The slight stickiness of the mouthfeel plays beautifully to the jammy fruit (bright berries/currants), and the zappy tartness is fantastic in harmony with the high acidity of the brew. That same acidity coaxes out nuanced hints of fleeting vinegar and concomitant acetic acid, which in turn set off the subtle wine character. All of the above is tied together nicely by a consistent but subtle oak wood barrel presence throughout. I'd love more tartness, and this isn't as overtly sour a beer as I would like - clocking in at a disappointing 4, maybe 5 out of 10 in terms of intensity. But what is present is neatly balanced, even if it does leave much to be desired in terms of depth of flavour and intricacy.

The Flanders Red ale portion of the beer doesn't come through much, and I find myself craving the cherry pie notes found in the best examples of the style (e.g. Rodenbach). I don't pick up on any overt grape character, nor is there any of the "mild bourbon" mentioned on the label. While the jammy fruit present here is nice, I would prefer a more vivid fruit expression - and ideally more of a tart fruitiness.

It's nicely built for what it is, but those hoping for a truly pucker-inducing sour ale will be let down.

Turning back to the mouthfeel, it's smooth, wet, and light to medium-bodied, but I'd stop short of calling it refreshing. Approachable albeit a bit thin (as the head suggested), with an admittedly high level of carbonation that nevertheless works, lending this sparkling beer an effervescence that calls to mind champagne when coupled with the white wine presence in the flavour profile. There isn't a perfect harmony of texture and taste here, and a bit more heft on the palate would give it a better overall presence, but there are a lot of interesting choices texture-wise that help give this beer its own distinct identity in spite of its flaws.

OVERALL: Many discerning sour ale drinkers will crave still more sourness, fruit, and tartness, but there are characteristics here that are worth appreciating on their own terms. It's absolutely drinkable, and for an American attempt at a fruited sour, it's interesting - but it can't hold a candle to the best sours, and fails to be more successful than a more widely available American sour like, say, New Belgium's La Folie. Worth trying but not worth seeking out, Vinosynth Red is a beer that does some interesting things, but ultimately is held back by its reticence and shallowness.

B- (3.38) / WORTHY

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Photo of JDByryderCARSALES
4.52/5  rDev +7.9%
look: 4.25 | smell: 4.75 | taste: 4.5 | feel: 4.25 | overall: 4.5

My favorite of the two Vinosynth series. Tart musty cherries and oak dominate the nose. Great and strong sour red fruits in the flavor. An excellent blend!

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Photo of Tsar_Riga
4.04/5  rDev -3.6%
look: 4 | smell: 3.75 | taste: 4.25 | feel: 4 | overall: 4

A - Red, with a slight orange cast, pours clean and clear, with very brisk carbonation. Head dissipates quickly. No real lacing.

S - Strong acid hit, with hints of grapes and oak.

T - Acidity is front, with wood and grape skin and flesh coming forward in the middle, and a quick acidic close.

M - Very strong carbonation, definite puckering.

O - An interesting blend, with features of each coming forward in turn. When cold, the wine element is stronger, while the barrel becomes central as it warms. Lovely.

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Photo of Tommo
4.39/5  rDev +4.8%
look: 4.25 | smell: 4.5 | taste: 4.25 | feel: 4.5 | overall: 4.5

Drank in Oct 2015. Bottle from 2014. This has aged amazingly. Never had it fresh, but it is awesome now. Smells greatly of wine, taste is not overly tart, nor bitter. Very nice mellow. Could drink alot of this

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Photo of SpeedwayJim
4.07/5  rDev -2.9%
look: 3.25 | smell: 3.75 | taste: 4.25 | feel: 4.25 | overall: 4.25

2014 vintage. 750ml corked and caged bottle into Night Shift stemware. Shared with schen9303.

Pours a coarse, bubbly 1.5 finger white head with poor retention. Beer is a clear mahogany that reveals ample carbonation. Lacing is stringy and sparse with decent stick. Just above average for the color.

Nose is tart and vinous. Hints of vinegar, sweet grape skin and a light foamy funk. Pretty mellow.

Opens grape skin sweetness. Some red vinegar, cane sugar and a spicy, sweet fruit tartness in the middle. A bit of plastic and foam with hints of wood, cobwebs and cotton towards the end. Finishes accented purple grapes with a sweet, sugary aftertaste. Pretty good.

Light bodied with ample carbonation. Prickly and lively in the mouth and goes down puckering, filmy and bubbly. Finishes dry and puckering with a filmy, lingering aftertaste. Solid.

Better than its White counterpart but not by much. The grape presence here is more noticeable which is good..... but is also quite a bit sweeter, which is bad.

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Photo of IMFletcher
4.02/5  rDev -4.1%
look: 3.75 | smell: 4.25 | taste: 4 | feel: 3.75 | overall: 4

Poured from 750ml. Cloudy with a head that vanished quickly after pouring. Nose was super sour, but the taste is muted in comparison. Mouthfeel was somewhat flat.

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Photo of Stinkypuss
4.47/5  rDev +6.7%
look: 3.75 | smell: 4.75 | taste: 4.5 | feel: 4 | overall: 4.5

Pours a light clear golden color with a fizzy head. Complex aroma of fruit, barrel and funk. White wine, lambic yeast, grain, cracked wheat, sour lemon and slight meaty funk all work well as they are integrated deep into the beer. Tart upfront finishing sour with a winey oak flavor holding out. Delicious sour ale here really good stuff from Upland.

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Photo of Alieniloquium
3.48/5  rDev -16.9%
look: 3.5 | smell: 3.5 | taste: 3.5 | feel: 3.25 | overall: 3.5

750 mL bottle poured into a snifter.

Appearance - Deep orange. Frothy white head. Thin collar.

Smell - Cherry, some vinegar, oak. Red wine. Red wine becomes more prominent as it warms.

Taste - Red wine is most prominent. Caramel malt. Light vinegar sourness. Oaky finish.

Mouthfeel - Medium light body. Low carbonation.

Overall - Decent. Light was a little better.

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Photo of Davepoolesque
4/5  rDev -4.5%
look: 4 | smell: 4 | taste: 4 | feel: 4 | overall: 4

Not as sour as a typical Upland lambic. Huge red wine character. Very effervescent, lots of carb. Almost kriek like...........................................

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Photo of BMMillsy
4.26/5  rDev +1.7%

Bottle from trade. Bottles 1-28-14, Batch K14. Poured on 10-28-14. Pours hazy orangish pink with a big off white or khaki head that dissipates quickly. Aroma of mild funk, sour vinegar, tart grapes, dry oak, very light vinous notes, some other fruits. The aroma is slightly lacking in that while all these expected aromas are there, they are all extremely faint. The flavor is jammy grapes up front, some raspberry and cherry notes, lots of oak, followed by a big sour punch, some funk and vinegar, fading into smooth red wine notes, and lingering vanilla oakiness. There isn't a lot of bourbon character here but that's ok with me. Medium light bodied, plenty there for the style, with effervescent carbonation. Overall an excellent sour brew. While I was hoping for a bit more jammy grape goodness, the oak and sour and fruit all balance very nicely to make a yummy finished product. This is my first Upland, and so far so good.

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Photo of rlee1390
4/5  rDev -4.5%
look: 4 | smell: 4 | taste: 4 | feel: 4 | overall: 4

A-Cloudy amber orange, nice carbonation, one finger head that does not last long.

S-Good deal of funk, grass, nice oak, the grapes are there but possibly too sweet.

T-Starts with funk, oak and bourbon from the malefactor. The grapes give a rather sweet flavor.

M-Lighter to medium bodied, some carbonation.

O-A good sour but the grapes make the beer too sweet for my liking.

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Vinosynth Red from Upland Brewing Company
Beer rating: 93 out of 100 with 181 ratings