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Cuvee De Castleton | Captain Lawrence Brewing Co.

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226 Reviews
Cuvee De CastletonCuvee De Castleton

Brewed by:
Captain Lawrence Brewing Co.
New York, United States

Style: American Wild Ale

Alcohol by volume (ABV): 9.00%

Availability: Rotating

Notes / Commercial Description:
This is a beer that will make you rethink your definition of beer. It doesn’t taste like any beer you’ve ever had, yet it doesn’t taste like anything else either. Pushing the limits of brewing is what makes this job so much fun. Malted barley, wild yeast, hand picked Muscat Grapes, and French oak wine barrels are just a few of the things that wen into crafting this beer. Breathe deep, take a long sip, and enjoy the creation in your hand.

Added by Billolick on 05-12-2007

For Trade:
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Reviews: 226 | Ratings: 540
Photo of jrallen34
3.79/5  rDev -12.5%
look: 3.5 | smell: 4.5 | taste: 3.5 | feel: 3 | overall: 4

375ml bottle into my De Struise glass. Batch 4...A light honey gold pour, decent carbonation at first but falls quickly with very light lacing...The aroma is pretty nice, Brute lite; acidic but lightly bready, small oak notes, white wine (sauvigon blanc) characteristics (light grass)...The taste is a bit of let down, displays too many of the white wine qualities in taste and feel. The more you drink the more vinous it gets, more oak and light feeling wine pour through. Weird alcohol finish, but pretty flat.

Huge start, sorry finish, not worth trading much to get.

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Photo of claspada
4.12/5  rDev -4.8%
look: 3.5 | smell: 4 | taste: 4.5 | feel: 3.5 | overall: 4

Batch 5, courtesy of of mrand01.

Pours a translucent golden dark yellow with zero head. Zero; no bubbles. Some mild lacing if I swirl the beer a little.

The aromas remind me of champagne straight off the bat. Vinous white grapes, tart granny smith apple and oak. Funky Brett emerges more as it warms with some mild barnyard and earth, like a wet piece of wood.

The flavors directly follow the nose, but are definitely more complex and enjoyable. Sweet pale maltiness alongside a mild of lemon sherbet with a pop of bright acidity. Vinous muscat grapes with lingering honeydew melon juiciness and subtle funky flourishes of Brett. As it warms you get emerging notes of spicy oak.

Mouthfeel is medium bodied with a lower than expected amount of carbonation. I expected more for the style. The finish is dry and acidic with a final bump of tart fruitiness.

Overall this is a great American Wild Ale. It's not the best I have ever had but it is definitely not a slouch by any means. I feel I would like it better if the ABV was a little lower and the carbonation was bumped up a little. A little unbalanced but extremely drinkable and one of my new favorite wild ales that skews towards the white vinous flavor spectrum.

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Photo of Jwale73
4/5  rDev -7.6%
look: 4 | smell: 4 | taste: 4 | feel: 4 | overall: 4

Batch #2 courtesy of blisscent. Poured a hazy gold with a vigorous, frothy, white head that dissipates and reveals a band of bubbles around the edges of the bowl. Nose is tart and citrusy. Taste follows nose - sourness is not overwhelming by any means; however, a vinegary quality comes out as well. Mouthfeel is light and lively, and slightly stimulates the salivary glands. Finish was fairly dry. I'm fairly new to Wilds, but I found this beer really quite drinkable. I thoroughly enjoyed this brew.

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Photo of cbutova
4.51/5  rDev +4.2%
look: 4 | smell: 4.75 | taste: 4.5 | feel: 4.25 | overall: 4.5

Huge thanks out to Emma for sharing this a little while back. Forgot to enter my notes from the notebook.

Batch 4, shared with good friends.

A- Small snifter pour from the 500ml bottle. Hazy golden bodied with just a small ring of white foam that leaves some nice legs. No true lace as it looks like wine after some time.

S- Super pungent funky lactic bouquet. Lemons and white sour grapes are massive, some cheesy Brett funk and barnyard is strong.

T- Mellows out a bit in a way with some balanced yeasty apple and pear flavors, lactic acid flavor is dominant with lemons and green apple, intense tart fruits. Funky vinous oak seems to round it out but candy sour goodness and some coriander spice.

MF- Dry as all hell with a lighter end Gueuze consistency and body. Silky foamy carbonation at a high end level accentuates the sour tartness that lingers on the palate.

Wow, one of the sourest beers I can think of with some good good funk and nice barnyard. Apple skin, sour grape fruity feel goes a long way with the bugs present.

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Photo of TurdFurgison
4.29/5  rDev -0.9%
look: 3.5 | smell: 4.5 | taste: 4.5 | feel: 4 | overall: 4

375mL bottle received from Cuzco, excited to finally try this CL beer. The label states it is a "combination of Belgian style Pale Ale which has been refermented with hand picked Muscat grapes & aged in wine barrels. As the beer ages in the oak it undergoes a secondary fermentation using the wild yeast known as Brettanomyces".

The bottle isn't corked like I expected it to be, just a standard cap. Poured into my new Cantillon "wine glass", it starts with a clear golden color and has nearly no head, just a ring of bubbles. Subsequent pours add some haziness from sediment.

It smells really good, brettanomyces funk and grapes, the sum effect is excellent. I don't get any spice in the nose, although the bottom of the label says there are some added, mostly a strong musty wild ale character with some white wine.

The grapes really come through in the flavor, not quite just accenting the funk but actually providing a good percentage of the overall taste. Tart and sour, lemons and white wine, barnyard character throughout, I really like this beer.

Dry, light bodied exceptional all around. Easy drinking, I could definitely go for a 750ml bottle, no problem.

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Photo of dirtylou
4.44/5  rDev +2.5%
look: 3.5 | smell: 4.5 | taste: 4.5 | feel: 4.5 | overall: 4.5

750ml bottle, split with blackness, obtained via trade from goodbyeohio, batch #2

appearance: served in a de koninck chalice, pale straw golden body with very little head...glowing yellow tone

smell: tart lemon, white grape, heavy whiffs of oak, cider vinegar, light grain, brett yeast

taste: "that's wild alright" - funky barnyard brett, earthy, sparkling white grape juice, dry tart lemon, nicely spiced, nice sour

mouthfeel: tart and light

drinkability: good

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Photo of BeerFMAndy
4.09/5  rDev -5.5%
look: 3.5 | smell: 4.5 | taste: 4 | feel: 4 | overall: 4

12.7 oz bottle split and poured into a Duvel tulip. Batch #4.

Yet again, another great beer provided by alcstradamus. Thank you sir!

A - Lightly hazy golden yellow color with absolutely no head. No ring or anything. Fair looking for a wild ale I suppose.

S - White grapes are almost elevating this beer to a white wine level of aroma. Light notes of a light type of wood comes through. Soft and delicate with a mild wild aroma. Smooth horse blanket.

T - Yep, a lot of white grape flavor and soft wood from barrel-aging come through. This is very white-wine like until the delicate wild flavor kicks in. Decent level of barnyard that blends nicely with the wine-like flavor profile.

M - Soft and light sourness with a tart finish and medium-bodied. Smooth texture with a good carbonation finish.

D - Good beer with good flavor and profile. I like the wine components to this wild beer. Nice drinkabiliy as well.

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Photo of ArrogantB
3.5/5  rDev -19.2%
look: 3.5 | smell: 3.5 | taste: 3.5 | feel: 3.5 | overall: 3.5

750ml bottle batch 2 courtesy of Tayner. This immediately gushed but I didn't lose hardly any because I had my glass ready. Cloudy, dull yellow with a white head that disappeared instantaneously. The smell is faint and sour, spice, urine? Biting sour flavor with a slight hint of a lemon at the end and brett. Overall this was pretty sour but it didn't really hit the right note for me, maybe it needs more time in the bottle. The one thing I did really like about this beer is that it had the faintest taste of Cap'n Crunch's Crunch Berries, which was cool.

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Photo of xnicknj
4.52/5  rDev +4.4%
look: 4 | smell: 4.5 | taste: 4.5 | feel: 4 | overall: 5

330mL bottle poured into tulip - thanks to cjo for opening this

Pours a clouded straw yellow with a tuft of white head on top. Retains for a moment before dissolving into some light film, leaving a few patches of lacing on the glass.

Tart and funky in the nose with hints of white wine and grapes. Sour with oak and faint fruity sweetness and barely any notion of alcohol, despite the ABV.

Pretty sour right up front, supported by the muscat grapes with some grape skin hints. Tart and biting with underlying oak tannins. Some straw and funky tones, followed by a dash of sweetness from the fruit. Finishes sour and lingering on the tongue.

Medium body, slightly higher carbonation, dry and bubbly on the tongue. This might be my favorite CL wild ale so far, even though I don't like muscat grapes. Definitely worth it.

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Photo of cpetrone84
4.22/5  rDev -2.5%
look: 4 | smell: 4.5 | taste: 4 | feel: 4 | overall: 4.5

Thanks to Kevin for sharing this one!

A-pours a pale golden yellow that is quite hazy. the head is thin and bubbly, pure white in color with little retention.

S-the nose is quite strong bringing notes of white grapes and hints of apples and cinnomon, spicy in the back with a light sour/tartness to it.

T-the taste is not as big as the nose but still substantial. slightly sour grapes with a light berry taste and tartness to it. Lemon and floral hops in the back with a spicy finish that lingers.

M-medium body with lots of carbonation and a strong prickly feeling on the mouth. the finish is dry and crisp

D-this is very tasty and the tartness level is quite low making it quite enjoyable. very good beer and a wild that isn't too wild!

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Photo of cosmicevan
4.42/5  rDev +2.1%
look: 4 | smell: 4.5 | taste: 4.5 | feel: 4 | overall: 4.5

consumed on 7/6, while I was "on Hiatus." picked up at the brewery a while back. enjoyed from my captain lawrence tulip.
Batch 5

a - brew poured a mostly opaque orange with lively carbonation. at first there was a big fizzy head, but it fizzled away in moments, yet i could still see a geyser of champagne like bubbling at the center of the surface of the beer.

s - smell is dynamite. sour tarts, white wine, green grapes. some brett sweetness.

t - taste is spot on. super sour green grapes. lemons and fruit drenched in white wine. good sourness without being off putting. the oak is a bit present in the finish. the brett shows in some sweetness, the funk can be found as the sourness rolls off your tongue.

m - tart, prickly carbonation. some spiciness in the finish.

o - overall, super refreshing. really well made sour. captain lawrence is no joke when it comes to sour beers and castleton is a fine example.


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Photo of twiggamortis420
4.49/5  rDev +3.7%
look: 3.5 | smell: 4.5 | taste: 4.5 | feel: 4 | overall: 5

375 mL courtesy of mikereaser, thanks for this gem Mike! Pours a clear gold color with a bubbly white head. Fades fast to a collar, very little lace.

Nose is wonderful...vinous, lavender and buttery chardonnay poke through a sourness and brettanomyces-laced aroma.

Very wine-like on the flavor with equal parts lactic acid and funky brett. Not a whole lot going on in the malt department, maybe a touch of grain. I cant tell which has a bigger influence: the muscat grapes or wine barrels (chardonnay or pinot grigio?). Very delicate beer, so light but yet packs a nice sour and funky punch. This one seems like it would develop over the next few years nicely.

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Photo of thagr81us
4.2/5  rDev -3%
look: 4 | smell: 4 | taste: 4.5 | feel: 4 | overall: 4

A long time Want!!! Big thanks goes out to sincereNC for sharing this one at the Down South Beer Tasting while aasher was in town to visit! Batch #4! Served from bottle into a Mikkeller taster flute. Poured a hazy pale yellow with a half finger pure white head that subsided to a minimal amount quickly. Maintained nice lacing throughout the glass. The aroma was comprised of sweet malt, wood, honey, tart cherry, tart, sour, funk, and buttery. The flavor was of sweet malt, honey, tart, sour, tart cherry, and fruit. It had a light feel on the palate with high carbonation. Overall this was a really good brew. As stated, I had been waiting to try this one for quite some time and was shocked to see it come out. Thanks again for this Ian! I was hoping this one wouldn't disappoint me, and alas, it did not. All of the flavors and aromas on this one blended very well together and complimented each other perfectly. Really hope to get a chance to have more of this in the future. I suggest you do the same if you are reading this...

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Photo of scottfrie
4.15/5  rDev -4.2%
look: 4 | smell: 4 | taste: 4.5 | feel: 3.5 | overall: 4

375ml bottle into snifter. Batch 4. Shared with armock.

A: Pours a light yellow golden with a thin, short lived bright white head that faded into a thin collar that left no lacing.
S: Light notes of funk and sweet fruit including pears, green apples and a bit of brett.
T: Big woody oak notes, pie dough, brett, light fruits, vinous grapes, and chardonnay. The finish is dry and gritty with tannins.
M: Medium body, tingly carbonation with a decent amount of sourness to the mouthfeel and a comfortable amount of tannins.
O: Tart and refreshing with a complex flavor. Definitely not a palate killer.

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Photo of AgentZero
4/5  rDev -7.6%
look: 4 | smell: 4 | taste: 4 | feel: 4 | overall: 4

A - Yellow that's slightly cloudy. Small head that left the sides clean.

S - Tart with some wine influence. Get green apples and some grape. A little bit sweet with some oaky barrel influence.

T - Oak, apple, grapes and a decent amount of tartnes. I enjoy barrel aged wilds, an this one is very solid. Some funk and farmhouse grass in there. Pretty light and non-offensive flavors.

M - Light with medium carbonation. Not bad.

D - Fairly drinkable, although not quite as effervesent as I like my wilds to be.

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Photo of illidurit
4.29/5  rDev -0.9%
look: 3.5 | smell: 4.5 | taste: 4.5 | feel: 4 | overall: 4

Bottle courtesy bret27. Poured into a 400 mL Bruery tulip. Hazy opaque light-goldenrod color with a filmy white head. Aroma is lemony with light meringue sweetness, some brett, apple, phenols, and a vinous note. Flavor of wine grapes, lemon, sour apple, chlorine, pepper, a hint of woody tannin. Great complexity all around. Not a ton of acidity but firmly sour with a nice drinkability.

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Photo of francisweizen
4.15/5  rDev -4.2%
look: 4 | smell: 4 | taste: 4 | feel: 4.5 | overall: 4.5

Bottle graciously shared with me by thequeue. Thanks dude. From iPhone notes :-)

BRIGHT Lemoncello Yellow with a BIG head of pure white snow foam. Aromas humurously enough, feature lemon, citrusy funk, with a slight vinegar twinge, some white wine [sauvignon blanc] notes and a bit of oak and vanilla. Aromas is solid. Taste is similar to the aroma. Sour, puckering, with some citrusy oak, and a bit of honeyed vanilla. Not too much going on really. Kinda one dimensional. Mouthfeel was the best part of the beer as it was nicely carbonated and creamy smooth. Drinkability is very good as well. This is a pretty straight forward, kinda one-dimensional wild ale. Still quite good, but not the mind blower we expected it to be

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Photo of BeerAdvocate
4.5/5  rDev +3.9%
look: 4.5 | smell: 4.5 | taste: 4.5 | feel: 4.5 | overall: 4.5

Review from BeerAdvocate magazine Vol. II Issue X:

Five years ago, if you told someone that you were drinking a Belgian-style Golden Ale fermented with grapes and aged in oak barrels with a secondary fermentation with Brettanomyces they would think you were from Mars. Today it is the cutting edge and all the rage. That is where Captain Lawrence is too, batch #2.

Champagne-like frothing, and more or less dissipates the same way. The clarity has dropped bright to show off the pale yellow color. The aroma ranges from barnyard to overripe fruit, mild wood tannin to a sour twang. A big aroma to say the least. Pungent sip to sip, but the taste buds do dull a bit as they become accustomed to the sour twang and chaotic medicinal/barnyard flavor from the Brett. Maltiness dials in strong enough to plant a solid tone of barley flavor. Hops? They are more or less staying out of this chaos, though they do pop out with the mild breath of alcohol real quick. The sourness drops out and leaves the mild oak and residual dry malt flavor to keep it going. Bone-dry finish.

Sure, Brett is a "love it or hate it" trait, though if you do love it this beer is without a doubt for you, and worth seeking out ... good luck, as only a small amount of cases are released each year.

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Photo of birchstick
4.04/5  rDev -6.7%
look: 3 | smell: 4 | taste: 4 | feel: 4 | overall: 4.5

Pours a straw yellow color without much of a head. Nose is grapes with a lot of lemon and sours and a lot of Brett funk. Taste starts off with sour lemon flavors that fade to a funky Brett musk. Some soft muscot grapes in next but are pushed aside by more lemon sourness. Mouth is pretty good. Overall this is a decent American wild. I don't know if it is worth the ammo, but pretty delicious.

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Photo of woosterbill
4.38/5  rDev +1.2%
look: 2.5 | smell: 4.5 | taste: 4.5 | feel: 4.5 | overall: 4.5

Batch 3 bottle into a snifter. Huge thanks to Jason for sharing this long-time want.

A: Hazy, nay, positively milky golden body with a head that disappears quickly and completely. It looks more like orange juice than beer, to be honest. Less than great.

S: Intensely acidic, with lemon, grapefruit, white wine grapes, sour apple, and general sour goodness. Awesome.

T: Tropical fruit sweetness heads things up, followed by vanilla, lemon, green apple, and biting tartness. Clean, dry finish. Lovely.

M: Creamy medium body with low carbonation; the sourness prickles all the way up to my sinuses, and that's all right by me.

O: Superb sour. I'm a huge fan of its balancing act between intense acidity and complex fruit sweetness, as neither side ever gets out of hand. Yeah, I'd probably rather get my face melted by Flaming Fury if I could only have a sip of one CL sour, but I could easily see myself reveling in an entire bottle of CdC. Hugely enjoyable, hugely drinkable, and just great beer.


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Photo of blackie
4.39/5  rDev +1.4%
look: 3.5 | smell: 4.5 | taste: 4.5 | feel: 4 | overall: 4.5

a: into my new St. Bernardus chalice, the hazy orange-yellow beer glows in indirect light, negligible head dectracts a bit from the score

s: tangy-sour bacterical complexity supported by a pale malt body that's almost completely dry, aromas of dried grape skins and citrus, delicate spice, white flowers, white tea with sourwood honey

m: delicate, fleeting carbonation on a light body

t: dry pale malts carry waves of sour bacterial funk, dried lemon peels, dry yeast bread, mild spice dust, mild aged hops, very dry finish

d: exceptionally drinkable given the moderately high abv

capped 750 split in msn with the dirtman, batch 2

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Photo of FosterJM
4.44/5  rDev +2.5%
look: 3.5 | smell: 4.5 | taste: 4.5 | feel: 4.5 | overall: 4.5

1299th Review on BA
Bottle to Wine Glass

Batch 5

30th Birthday Party
Shared by Callmecoon

App- Glowing golden yellow with zero head or cling. A few bubbles around the edges.

Smell- A great wild ale. The booze levels are incredibly hidden with a lot of sour on the nose with some oaky lemon fruits. The tart level really balanced the lactic out. Smooth and tasty with a small white wine tannin note.

Mouth- A bit of a light medium with a fairly medium carbonation level. A bit of grape and lemon residual flavors.

Drink- A damn fine wild ale. Great layers and very smooth. Thank you Steve for sharing.

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Photo of tpd975
4/5  rDev -7.6%
look: 4 | smell: 4 | taste: 4 | feel: 4 | overall: 4

Have had this one several times. This bottle was from batch 3.

A: Pours a light cloudy shade of yellow. The head is very small and white in color.

S: Aromas of sour sweet fruit, light tart citrus, and yeast.

T: Citric for sure, nice light tartness with hints of tart and sweet grapes. Light barrel notes with a hint of earthy minerals.

M: On the lighter side of medium nice carbonation.

D: Not bad, not my favorite sour, but I do like it.

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Photo of LilBeerDoctor
4.2/5  rDev -3%
look: 4 | smell: 4 | taste: 4.5 | feel: 4 | overall: 4

Reviewed on 7/27/08. Bottle, batch 2 sampled the day of the release. Pours a cloudy light orange with a fizzy white head (careful when opening!). Aroma of tart sour fruits (apple, pear), oak/barrel, and some grapey wine notes, especially as the beer warms. Flavor of sweet tart oak, same fruits as in the aroma. I have to admit that I haven't been impressed with some of Captain Lawrence's special release beers, but thankfully this beer lived up to its reputation and more! An awesome sour, super drinkable, very complex and interesting. Excellent and well crafted.
8/4/9/4/18 (4.3/5)

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Photo of hopdog
4.73/5  rDev +9.2%
look: 3 | smell: 5 | taste: 5 | feel: 4.5 | overall: 4.5

750ml bottle acquired in trade with puzzl (thanks!). Batch 1.

Gusher alert. This one erupted all over my bar.

Poured a medium and hazy yellow color with a small sized head (after gushing, I expected this to pour all head). Aromas of wood, grapes, coconut sunscreen, pineapples, lemon pledge, earthy, and funky. Tastes of grapes, wood, pineapples, citrus, and funky. Nice medium pucker/tartness.

Notes from 8/15/07

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Cuvee De Castleton from Captain Lawrence Brewing Co.
4.33 out of 5 based on 540 ratings.
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