Otter Creek Middleberry Ale
Otter Creek Brewing

Otter Creek Middleberry AleOtter Creek Middleberry Ale
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Fruit and Field Beer
not listed
3.13 | pDev: 18.21%
Otter Creek Brewing
Vermont, United States
Retired (no longer brewed)
Otter Creek Middleberry AleOtter Creek Middleberry Ale
Reviews: 51 | Ratings: 53 | Log in to view all ratings and sort
Reviews by TheLongBeachBum:
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TheLongBeachBum from California

2.53/5  rDev -19.2%
look: 3 | smell: 2.5 | taste: 2.5 | feel: 2.5 | overall: 2.5

Presentation: 12 ounce bottle. The yellow neck label describes this as a Special Release. The Main label has a fruity picture of Elderberries and Blueberries. No strength listed, but the reverse label has "Bottled on 3/31/04 Batch #1518" on it.

Appearance: Pale golden body, exceptionally clear with many streamers. The head is off-white and lasts for quite a time. 2” thick at first, it slowly settles down to finally reveal a clumpy broken head and some light lacing on the walls of the Glass. Below average conditioning.

Nose: Wow. Yes this most certainly has elderberries and blueberries. However the nose has a forced feel to it, like when you use too much food coloring whilst baking. The essence is OK from a distance, and it actually smelled pretty good when I first cracked the cap off. As soon as I stuck my nose over the Glass – its overdose, it smells a little artificial.

Taste: More elderberries than blueberries, bitter with a hint of sourness set amidst a pale lager malt background. The fruit tastes are not sickly or over the top, but they are just a tad too powerful for me. Has a light lemony aspect that may come from the sourness. Finishes with a dark berry aftertaste, which lingers on the tongue and in your belches.

Mouthfeel: Has the body of a low strength pale lager, thin and a little watery.

Drinkability: I struggled with this one, but I did finish the bottle, it just took me a while though.

Overall: I’m not that big on fruit beers (unless it’s a traditional Lambic) to be honest, and this one is most certainly a dessert beer for those of a similar palette. Not a bad beer, just one that is not really in my sphere of favorite styles.

Not quite my usual “Cup of Tea”, nevertheless, a Big fruity Thanks to McCall for sending it over. Cheers!

Jul 06, 2004
More User Reviews:
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jdhilt from New Hampshire

3.65/5  rDev +16.6%
look: 4 | smell: 4 | taste: 3.5 | feel: 3.5 | overall: 3.5

Pours with a white, pillowy, two-finger head, fades quickly and leaves a good lace. Medium carbonation and light bodied. Light amber clear color. Nose is very fruity. Starts on the sweet side with blueberry flavor and finishes with a prickly tartness. Good summer ale. $1.55 for a 12oz bottle from Colonial Spirits, Acton, MA

Aug 05, 2004
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oberon from North Carolina

3.49/5  rDev +11.5%
look: 3.5 | smell: 4.5 | taste: 3 | feel: 3 | overall: 3.5

Pours a clear yellow with a wispy white head with a good amount of carbonation.Great aroma of fresh ripe blueberries by far the best aroma of any fruit beer I have ever had,Taste hits hard at first a big grainy malt feel to start with a tart finsih just as big.I think my fruit beers should be a little softer but this has some unique qualities to it.It is pretty refreshing with its tart finish after awhile.

Aug 10, 2004
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Suds from Missouri

2.19/5  rDev -30%
look: 3.5 | smell: 2 | taste: 2 | feel: 2 | overall: 2.5

This beer is a watery yellow liquid, topped with a sticky and impressive white foam. The aroma is composed of grain (chaff-like) and berries. The berry aroma is pleasant, but seems artificial and reminds me of extract-added to homebrew. It’s crisp, carbonic, watery, and astringent. The graininess in the aroma is present in the taste, but the berry character is diminished. It’s an extraordinarily watery beer. Light, weak, and uninspiring.

Jun 06, 2004
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chilidog from Ohio

3.42/5  rDev +9.3%
look: 4 | smell: 4.5 | taste: 3 | feel: 3 | overall: 3

I was glad to find this limited release otter, for some of the limited are harder to find for me. The beer pours a clear pils-like gold that slightly up on carbonination though a fair amount of lace was born of the one inch white head. The aroma, Oh the aroma of clean fresh blueberries was awesome!! The taste was abit sweet-tart like with a raspberry tartness to the mouthfeel. Overall the body was abit weak or watery. This makes for a fair hot summer day beer. Also makes a good beer with a fruit pie. : a cooking note, It makes a great smelling pancake addition to your mix. A down-right handy summer brew to have around.

May 31, 2004
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Dogbrick from Ohio

3.15/5  rDev +0.6%
look: 3 | smell: 3 | taste: 3 | feel: 3.5 | overall: 3.5

Clear dark gold with a miniscule white head. Next to no lacing. Smells like those packets of mixed fruit jelly you can find at Bob Evans. Light-bodied and bubbly with a fruity flavor. Faint hops as well, but that is about all. The finish is berry-y and short. Not really a noteworthy beer.

Dec 21, 2004
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ElGuapo from New Jersey

3/5  rDev -4.2%
look: 3 | smell: 3 | taste: 3 | feel: 3 | overall: 3

Golden body topped off with a decent amount of white head. The retention needs some work, but it initially looks pretty good. The aroma is loaded with dark berries.

The balance in this one is a bit off, with a bit too much fruit. The malts are nice with a little bit of toasty flavor. Dark berries blast you again and again, and they get a little annoying. It is nice to drink, but I think it needs to go with some food as the fruit flavor really got to me. It is worth a shot, but I don't think I will be getting this one again.

May 02, 2004
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edchicma from Massachusetts

3.5/5  rDev +11.8%
look: 3.5 | smell: 3.5 | taste: 3.5 | feel: 3.5 | overall: 3.5

Ok for what it is...a fruity beer. Strong berry smell and taste throughout. Decent mid yellow color, but witha rapidly dissipating head. Mouthfeel was a bit overly dry and drinkability likewise suffered. A liitle too tart on the finish, with a lasting tartness that was not overly pleasant.

May 06, 2004
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stirgy from Pennsylvania

4.45/5  rDev +42.2%
look: 4.5 | smell: 4.5 | taste: 4.5 | feel: 4 | overall: 4.5

This beer poured absolutely clear and was a bright brassy color. Topped with a thin but frothy head of bright white foam. The aroma is wonderfully soft and fruity. There’s definitive berry notes. Sweet blue and black berries, and of course elderberry. (although I’m not completely sure what they smell like – Is it an IHOP syrup?)

The taste is very light, fruity and very perfumey. Flavorful, tart and bittersweet. Almost like a raspberry tart. A bitter grapefruit finish surfaces from underneath the tart berry notes. There’s a soft alcohol bite. A most refreshing ale and a first class fruit beer.

Aug 04, 2004
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RBorsato from Virginia

2.91/5  rDev -7%
look: 4 | smell: 3 | taste: 2.5 | feel: 3.5 | overall: 3

Pale yellow-ish straw color with a full pillowy white head, decent carbonation, and fairly good lace. Interesting Smarties-like candy aroma; seems as if the elderberries are more promineant than blueberries. Tastes of fruit extract big time... not really melding well. Light-medium (leans medium) bodied and smooth/creamy for a fruit beer but finishes harshly on the throat.

Interesting but a pass.

Label states: "Hints of elderberries and blueberries"

Bottled: 04/13/04 (Batch #1520)
Tasted: 06/09/04

($6.29 / 6-pack)

Jun 10, 2004
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mschofield from Massachusetts

2.06/5  rDev -34.2%
look: 4 | smell: 3 | taste: 1.5 | feel: 3 | overall: 1

Pours a clear gold with a hint of red/purple. Topped with a three finger white head. Leaves thick wide rings of lacing.
Raspberry and strawberry aroma, some light grain underneath.
Unpleasant taste, too floral and a chemical-like berry note. Like spraying perfume in your mouth.
Light bodied, I couldn't stand it enough to get through one. Even my girlfriend who likes fruit beers didn't like this one.

May 25, 2004
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Truh from New Hampshire

3.3/5  rDev +5.4%
look: 3.5 | smell: 3.5 | taste: 3 | feel: 3.5 | overall: 3.5

Took a walk around the Marbleworks with this one on 10/16/2004. 12-oz. bottle poured in a shaker glass.

Light, nebulous sheen of head with soft lacing. Very light golden to almost a washed out yellow hue. Tons of constant carbonation releasing fruity esters from easily a foot away; up close the fruit imparts sour notes, lime. Acrid, soapy, sour taste profile with the berry skin pulp echo creating a slight chew, but more of a residue. Not overly impressed by this, but better than some other fruit ales.

Mar 05, 2005
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Stubbie1 from Connecticut

3.98/5  rDev +27.2%
look: 4.5 | smell: 4 | taste: 4 | feel: 3.5 | overall: 4

A: Crystal clear with a nice tight white head. The head faded slowly and a thick lace appeared. The never ending combination race up the glass and kept the lace until the end of the beer.

Aroma: Mild hints of berries, touch of malt and a splash of hops. The berry was not overpowering but gave it a nice touch

Taste: A bit sweet up front with the berry flavor, mild malt tones in the middle and a bitter hop pucker mixed with a fruit finish.

M: Mouthfeel is dry, crisp and bubbly, not bad.

D: For a fruit beer I was expecting the worse, something that was like drinking syrup. This is not that way. I could enjoy many of these, more so on a hot summer day as it has a refreshing feel to it.

Overall: Not into fruit beers? Give this one a try. It is not overpowering. Enjoy!

Oct 22, 2005
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JISurfer from South Carolina

3.05/5  rDev -2.6%
look: 3.5 | smell: 3.5 | taste: 3 | feel: 3 | overall: 2.5

I usually really like Otter Creek brews, but this one wasn't up to par, with what I am used to from them. Sure, it had a nice foamy head and a nice subtle blueberry smell, but something just wasn't matching up for me. Then, I figured it out. The hops. This one could have been a bit less hoppy IMO. I liked what they were going for, but the hops ruined it for me. Don't get me wrong, it's not some super hopped up brew by any means. I just think it would have been a bit better with some more "malt action" and less "hop action".

Jan 10, 2006
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oelergud from Virginia

3.27/5  rDev +4.5%
look: 3 | smell: 3.5 | taste: 3.5 | feel: 2.5 | overall: 3

Wheat golden, slightly cloudy body. White head is shortlived and doesn't leave much lace. Good carbonation.
Strong sweet and tart berry scent, mostly blueberry and something more tart, maybe elderberry as the label suggests. Some subtle wheat, grass and floral notes.
Very acidic and tart flavor with some mild berry sweetness struggling to come through. Faint sweet licorice. Aftertaste is mostly tart with little hop presence.
Mouthfeel is decent for the style though I wish it had a little more body, very faint coating.
Always interesting to try a different beer and good to see the courage of brewers even if it doesn't turn out that great.


Jun 01, 2005
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matyp99 from New Jersey

3.22/5  rDev +2.9%
look: 3.5 | smell: 4 | taste: 3 | feel: 2.5 | overall: 3

12 oz. bottle
Bottled on 4/13/04 Batch #1520

Pours clear golden color with slight white lacing. Smell is very berry like, with the blueberry dominating. Taste is somewhat chemical/artifical for the berry taste, but yet still refreshing like stated in other reviews. I think the combo of elderberry and blueberry is not the best combo to go after choose one or the other not both. Overall an easy drinking beer that with the artifical flavor taste would not make much of a difference if drank out of the bottle or poured into a glass.

Apr 28, 2004
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scottum from Vermont

3.87/5  rDev +23.6%
look: 4 | smell: 4.5 | taste: 3.5 | feel: 3.5 | overall: 4

Pours a clear clear amber with a thin big white head. Big fruit nose to it with some smoothness and solid crispy balance. A very easy drinking beer. I think I like this one better than #9. We'll see how it does for Otter Creek, this could be the next #9. Who knows?

Apr 23, 2004
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waughbrew from Massachusetts

2.01/5  rDev -35.8%
look: 3 | smell: 4.5 | taste: 1 | feel: 1.5 | overall: 1

Crystal clear extremely pale yellow, big bubbled carbonation forms a white head. Decent retention, good lacing. Pretty attractive despite the light color. Smells great - the fruits are in the forefront, but have nice zesty hoppage and great yeastwork behind it. Taste is honestly very close to those fruit-flavored seltzer waters (with some spicy hops added). Pretty horrid. Very thin and dry with harsh carbonation and astringent grainy bitter finish. The aftertaste challenges you to take another sip. No thanks, I gave this a fair shot. Too bad, it started with so much potential. Is this low-carb? Maybe that was the plan. I am trying to grasp why a good brewery would make this.

May 11, 2004
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SheepNutz from Kentucky

3.56/5  rDev +13.7%
look: 4 | smell: 3 | taste: 3.5 | feel: 4 | overall: 4

12oz. bottle poured into a tulip-style glass. It pours a medium gold color with two fingers of head that die off to a small collar fairly quick. There is just a little lacing. The smell is very berrylike. You get more of the elderberry than the blueberry. It smells more like fruit syrups than the actual fruit. The taste starts malty, with a slight tartness. The berry syrup flavors come out again in the finish and linger through the aftertaste. The mouthfeel is decently thick. The drinkability isn't bad either. A decent berry beer.

Sep 11, 2004
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clvand0 from Kentucky

3.72/5  rDev +18.8%
look: 3.5 | smell: 4 | taste: 4 | feel: 3.5 | overall: 3

I really expected this to have a darker, more berry-like color. Turns out it's very clear and a very very light amber color. Like yellow with a slight amber tint. Very small head and leaves no lacing on the glass. The aroma is a little sour and a little sweet, but very fruity. I don't know exactly what a middleberry is supposed to be (but it's from Middlebury, VT), so it might smell like a middleberry. The flavor is pretty smooth. A little spicy. The sweet, fruitiness is there, but not overwhelming. Has a clean finish that leaves some sweetness on the palate. Very interesting brew. I might have it again, but it's on the bubble.

Sep 10, 2004
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lampkins from Wisconsin

1.59/5  rDev -49.2%
look: 2 | smell: 3 | taste: 1 | feel: 1.5 | overall: 1

Given the facts that I enjoyed their other beers from Otter Creek this beer was an utter disaster. Beer poured a hazy yellow with little or no head. Smelled of berries. Taste was very bitter with little or no berry taste. While I hate to waste a six pack this might be the first to meet the dumpster.

Jun 18, 2004
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whynot44 from Missouri

2.89/5  rDev -7.7%
look: 2.5 | smell: 3.5 | taste: 2.5 | feel: 3 | overall: 3

Light bodied, pale straw color with a quick disappearing white head.

The aroma is BLUEBERRY with an herbal grassy background.

The taste is heavier on Elderberry which, combined with the herbal hops tends to be slightly bitter and astringent, with a dry finish and continuing astringent aftertaste. This could take some getting used to unless you are a real elderberry fancier.

If so, this may be what you've been waiting for. It might go well with a tart berry pie.

Apr 24, 2005
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WesWes from New York

3.56/5  rDev +13.7%
look: 3 | smell: 4.5 | taste: 3 | feel: 4 | overall: 3.5

The beer pours a very pale gold color with a thin white lace head. The aroma is great! It has a very pleasant blueberry and elderberry scent. There is little malt character here, but that's not what this beer is about. The taste is average. It has a very light, fruity taste to it. It goes down easy and refreshes. This beer has a weak fruit flavor. I wish the blueberries were more pronounced. The mouthfeel is good. It is a low bodied beer with good carbonation. This is a decent fruit beer. It has tremendous aroma and average flavor. This is a good call for those hot summer days.

Apr 21, 2004
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ybnorml from Rhode Island

2.17/5  rDev -30.7%
look: 3.5 | smell: 4 | taste: 1 | feel: 2 | overall: 2

As soon as I opened this bottle up I could smell berries. Even my wife who was standing next to me said "Yum berries! Smells good!" This beer has a bright clean yellow/golden body with not much head. The taste mixes berry fruityness with hop spiceyness all at once. Which may account for the Chemical taste that others are reporting. Not good.
Note: 5/1/04 I have been informed that Elderberries have a dry astringent after taste which may account for that chemical taste that I percive. I'm going to try to taste some to see if I need to adjust my review.

Apr 28, 2004
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Hefe from Oregon

3.07/5  rDev -1.9%
look: 3.5 | smell: 4 | taste: 2.5 | feel: 3 | overall: 3

Tasted on 8/28/04

Appearance: Pale yellow with a minimal off white head.

Smell: NIce beady yeasty aromas, with a stong background of the blueberry/elderberry.

Taste: The berries are right there, but unfortunately with a strong astringent bite, ouch. otherwise ruins what could be a tasty summer brew. Everything else lines up nicely, malt, yeast, slightly sweet finish.

Mouthfeel: Maybe a touch thin, but nicely light and spritzy. Astringet, Almost strikes me like tannin from the berries.

Drinkability: Damned astringency brings this down too.

Aug 29, 2004
Otter Creek Middleberry Ale from Otter Creek Brewing
Beer rating: 75 out of 100 with 53 ratings