Cuvee De Castleton | Captain Lawrence Brewing Co.

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BA SCORE
96
world-class
225 Reviews
Cuvee De CastletonCuvee De Castleton
BEER INFO

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

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

BEER STATS
Reviews:
225
Ratings:
535
Avg:
4.33
pDev:
8.78%
 
 
Wants:
1,003
Gots:
105
For Trade:
9
User Reviews
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Reviews: 225 | Ratings: 535
Photo of jmarsh123
4.12/5  rDev -4.8%
look: 4 | smell: 4.5 | taste: 4 | feel: 4 | overall: 4

Review 500!

Pours clear gold with little head and lots of bubbles.

Lots of white wine notes in the aroma. Some lemon, pear and a bit of funk. Not overly sour on the nose.

Flavor is similar. Lots of sour apple and lemon up front. Finishes with a lot of white wine, heavy oak and nearly bone dry. A little bit of a funky flavor on the back end too.

Light mouthfeel with adequate carbonation.

Pretty good, but doesn't compare to some other highly rated sours I've had lately. The funky aftertaste isn't bad, but isn't my favorite either. Would drink again although I'll save my trading ammo for stuff I like better.

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

12.7oz bottle into a big style champagne flute. Batch numero three. Finally getting around to reviewing this after many bottles.

Castleton made noise when opened, a loud hiss, than alot of activity in the bottle. Light golden in color with a yellow look as well. After many bottles I still cant get a decent cap on this. There is plenty of carbonation, it's just that cuvee does not produce foam, a lot of rising bubbles though making some fizz.

Scents are pleasant but not anything heavy handed, it took a few sniffs to pick up the main musks. Muscat grapes up front giving this a vinious quality. Under those is the funk, although it's more of a mild brettness with hay and barnyard. The spices are so light that I cant make them out.

Castleton delivers all that is advertised with the spices at a minimal level, it's tart, somewhat sour and drinkable. Muscat grapes impart a somewhat winey taste underneath and somehow this comes off like a sour cider in some ways. The wild yeast is tasted and welcomed but it as well is somewhat muted. Brett bombs all over the place. It gives off tartness and a dirty barnyard with hay. I may be getting a touch of coriander at times.

CDC is well carbed, it was noted once the bottle was opened, a lot of activity seen in the liquid and on the mouth. It's very lively with a crispness that somehow builds more and then leaves. Cuvee is on the lighter side of medium in terms of build and finishes incredibly dry. I can feel it in my stomach so it's doing it's job. afterwards i tasted some grape on the back of my tounge, delicious. this drinks more like 5% than 8%.

I like this beer, I always have, but at times I feel it can be so much more in terms of sourness and funkiness. This is very str8 forward in terms of the main tastes and it works, castleton is well balanced, but I would like to see a amped up version to appear in the future. Either way if you like sours, you will like this, it's that simple.

I'll update in a year or so with some batch two CDC, I want to see how this develops. Im rooting for this beer but's it's not quite in A territory for me now. Perhaps the captain will consider changing the name of this beer as it's no longer the best(cuvee)that this brewery has to offer in their sour department.

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Photo of Jmoore50
4.12/5  rDev -4.8%
look: 4 | smell: 4.5 | taste: 4 | feel: 4 | overall: 4

I enjoyed Flaming Fury more.

The appearance is a very hazy gold with little to no head. Come on, give me some head! It has some bubbles that are produced with an aggressive pour, but other than that nothing. It has some great leg on it though, coats the entire glass with great ABV leg.

The smell is of grapes, sour funky yeast, crisp white wine, and grapes. Very vinous, delicious smell.

The taste is much like the smell but with more complexity. It has a strong white grape and orange rind taste. It is nicely tart and has some wet barnyard characters. It reminded me of this one wine tour I did in Mendoza, Argentina. Earthy, sweet wine, and must, really interesting characters that were intensified after a rain, just superb.

The mouthfeel is good, but could be carbonated a little more. The yeast on the bottom provided the most flavor, which is something I am starting to learn the more sours I drink. Tart and astringent, this was a treat.
J

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

Thanks a million to jdmek9 for this incredible beer. I cracked it open to celebrate the end of LSATs forever! 500mL batch #3-enjoyed in a flute.

A: A pour straight down the middle results in a quick fizzy white head. It dissipates quickly and there's no retention. The ale is a really cloudy golden color, varying in dark-light shades.
S: Stinky feet, horses, tart fruits with an emphasis on bitter lemon. Pretty clean and straightforward.
T: Similar to the aroma, but subtle. Very bitter fruits, with that lovely sour warhead flavor. The sour doesn't have the biggest kick, though, and I was really hoping for that! It's earthy, grassy, stinky, but still very clean for a sour. The residuals are surprisingly sweet, with the funky lemon turning into tart white grapes.
M: Medium carbonation and medium body, with tons of shifting residuals linger behind. They range from sour to sweet, and back again.
D: I really enjoyed this one. Thanks, Jason, for letter me crack this open on a very special day!

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Photo of Mora2000
4.1/5  rDev -5.3%
look: 4 | smell: 4 | taste: 4 | feel: 4 | overall: 4.5

Big thanks to Exiled for sharing this bottle, which was drank alongside Barrel Select, Rosso e Marrone and Flaming Fury. Batch No. 4.

The beer pours a clear yellow color with a white head. The aroma is very fruity. I get some oranges and lemons, as well as the expected grapes. I also get some oaked notes that really come through. The flavor is a great mix of grapes with some oak and lemons. The beer is very dry and is lower on the tartness scale than the other CL sours it was sampled alongside. Medium mouthfeel and medium carbonation. A very nice beer that I am glad I got to try.

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Photo of Erdinger2003
4.1/5  rDev -5.3%
look: 4 | smell: 4 | taste: 4 | feel: 4 | overall: 4.5

Batch 002

It pours almost no head with a carbonation like soda pop and a clear yellow color. The smell is slightly sour with some white wine characteristics and dry bouquet. Taste is a dry white wine with some subtle sour flavors in the background. Still a good mouthfeel with carbonation not overpowering, but giving a good soft acidity. Overall, it's pretty easy to drink as it's a good palate refresher and easily should pair with intense food flavors.

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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 hawks10
4.09/5  rDev -5.5%
look: 3.5 | smell: 4.5 | taste: 4 | feel: 4 | overall: 4

375ml green bottle - Batch 4 - Poured into a tulip...

Pours a bright golden orange color with one finger of very spritzy, fine white head, which recedes to nothingness very quickly. What is left is a still looking beer, similar to Indian Summer Apple Juice (my favorite). I don't like when beers look still...

Smell is initially tart and lemony. White grapes add some sweetness and makes this beer resemble sparking grape juice/champagne. Though no champagne I ever smelled has the subtle nuances this beer has. Lots of barnyard funk, the brett is very apparent here. Musty and dry with hints of oak. Very nice smelling beer, complex and balanced, bright and tart...

Tart and dry to start. Very dry, lemony with loads of white grapes, they add some sweetness and champagne/white wine-like characteristics. Dusty and musty, brett really shows through, as do some hints of oak. Tasty beer, tart and refreshing, funky and complex, but balanced and highly drinkable...

Medium bodied with low, but spritzy carbonation. Tart, not quite puckering, but a good level of astringent tartness. Finishes dry, making you want more...

Pretty good beer, gonna hang on to my other bottle for a while and see what this one is like with some age on it...

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Photo of jwc215
4.08/5  rDev -5.8%
look: 2 | smell: 4 | taste: 4.5 | feel: 4 | overall: 4

Thanks to jcwattsrugger for sharing!

Pours hazy lemon-drop yellow with a fizzy head that immediately pops down to nothing. Not pleasant to look at with the head just loudly popping to nothing, with small bubbles continuing but producing no head.

The smell is tart - lemony, sour, some funk and acidity.

The taste is of tart lemon and apple. Sour/tart with balancing sweet maltiness, it has some funkiness mixed in. A hint of oak/vanilla grows as it continues, putting a unique spin on it that works very well. It has a touch of acidity in the finish.

Medium-bodied with carbonation towards aggressive to start with that mellows to medium as it progresses.

Drinks very well! Interesting complexities going on here. I can see this one - because of the lemony and acidic notes - a great pairing with many fish dishes. Too bad that the head was so unimpressive and the carbonation fine, but not great (esp. at the start).

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Photo of barleywinebrewer
4.07/5  rDev -6%
look: 3.5 | smell: 4 | taste: 4.5 | feel: 4 | overall: 3.5

thanks to azurelimits for this via trade! Having tried one other captain lawrence brew I looked forward to this release and hoped to have a chance to try this beer.

A - the first beer I had from them was a gusher and this being recently released I was still cautious of a repeat gush. I was right. A loud pop, a second, a burst of beer gushed forth as I was quickly tilting the bottle towards my awaiting cup. The beer was a cloudy straw yellow with a burst of white foam overtaking the glass and ultimately settling down to a steady ring at the side of the glass.
S - sour acidic notes, citric notes, white grapes and a musty note.
T - similar to the nose but with additions of oak, lime, sweet tarts.
M - medium bodied, over carbonated fizzy notes with a tart finish
D - I liked this beer for almost the entire package. The overcarbonation detracted from the experience for me.

glad I tried this shortly after it's release. I'd be concerned about it becoming a big gusher at 6-12 months and worse if held longer than that. I like where this brewery is taking it's beers. I just wish they could get the carbonation under control. I'd recommend trying it while young. Any age on it and I'd prepare for a gusher!

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Photo of mothman
4.07/5  rDev -6%
look: 3.5 | smell: 4 | taste: 4 | feel: 4 | overall: 4.5

Poured into Southern Tier tulip. Batch 3

Pours hardly any head. Color is a yellow mango orange. Very hazy. No retention or lace.

Aroma: Grapes, oak, slight brett. Definitely has a Belgian base to it with some gloves.

Taste: Has a ton of brett and grapes to it. Some wine and oak notes as well. The brett really dominates the taste. Has some barnyard funk as well.

Mouthfeel: Sour and tart. Some funk as well. Lighter bodied with medium amount of carbonation. Ends slightly dry.

Overall, nothing amazing, but for the abv this is very drinkable. It was good, but seemed to lack complexity. I really wasn't expecting the level of brett this beer had.

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Photo of drgonzo3705
4.05/5  rDev -6.5%
look: 4 | smell: 4 | taste: 4 | feel: 4.5 | overall: 4

Batch 3

A: Pours a hazy deep straw color with little visible carbonation. A thin ring of carbonation is visible around the edge of the glass.

S: Big funk up front with a light lemon zest aroma hiding below and a bit of a floral aroma.

T: Matches the nose. Funk up front with some lemon tartness in back.

M: Medium body with adequate carbonation and a slight dryness to it.

D: Good but not quite great. Very pleasant sour overall.

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Photo of beachbum1975
4.05/5  rDev -6.5%
look: 4 | smell: 4 | taste: 4 | feel: 4.5 | overall: 4

Batch # 3 shared by DrewOSU - Thanks, man! Part of our little sour tasting...

Pours a cloudy grapefruit in color with a white creamy top.

Nose action: Nasty gym socks, blue cheese, barnyard and some general stench with some light citrus and almost wheat. Wow...

Oak, funk and sour continues on the mouth. Very interesting flavor I can't define that's very acidic and almost grapefruit like.

Nice...

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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 Overlord
4.04/5  rDev -6.7%
look: 3.5 | smell: 4.5 | taste: 4 | feel: 3.5 | overall: 4

Many thanks to hophead84, whose generosity belies his stature (I keed, I keed).

Pours a rather sinister looking hazy orange-ish gold. If you swirl it in the light, what looks like very definite lighter colored yellow streaks meander about. Interesting. Some bubbles on the pour, but zero head. Zero.

Smells strangely sweet. I can count on one hand the number of sweet wild/sour/reallambic/gueuzes I've had. Smells like lemons and juicy green grapes. Maybe a twinge of horse blanket-y funk.

Taste is also strangely sweet. Seriously tastes like sweetened lemon juice mixed with grape juice mixed with a bit of sour and funky vinous notes gone rotten. In a good way. This is seriously like fruit juice. Alcoholic, sourish fruit juice. No bubbles. I do want some bubbles. There's a bit of oak-y vinousness to it, but this is the ultra-rare sour where the funk, oak, and vinous/vinegar/acidic bite take a backseat to abundant fruit flavors, rather than vice versa.

Thanks again!

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Photo of BTPete
4.04/5  rDev -6.7%
look: 3.5 | smell: 4.5 | taste: 4 | feel: 3.5 | overall: 4

Bottle of BATCH 3 consumed on 5/19 by myself :) to tulip.

A: Clear golden yellow with no head. Some bubbles in the glass.

S: Funky white wine and light fruit. Some mustiness below the fruit. Funkier than the flaming fury I had before it seems.

T: Smoother than I had remembered from my other tastes. Not overly funky or sour in my mouth. Pretty vinous overall but nothing really taking center stage for me.

M: Medium bodied, low carb.

D: Smooth and drinkable. Not overly sour and for myself would have preferred a little more carbonation but highly drinkable regardless.

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Photo of sweemzander
4.03/5  rDev -6.9%
look: 4.5 | smell: 4 | taste: 4 | feel: 4 | overall: 4

Review #900!
750mL bottle poured into a stemmed glass. Batch #2 (06/2008) courtesy of kegatron; thank you!

(A)- Pours a hazy golden orange color. Produced a giant effervescent and bubbly pure white head that disappeared quickly to froth.

(S)- A nice dry and lightly earthy tartness. Not so much fruit anymore, but there are subtle white grape and lemon. This definitely gives way for the oak nuances to shine.

(T)- A huge acidic sour bite up front. Very earthy and oaky with very subtle fruit. Lots of Brett funk on the finish.

(M)- A huge effervescent carbonation level on this guy. Its actually a bit too high even for the style. A good and potent sourness with a very funky Brett oak profile.

(D)- Definitely a solid wild ale. Has stood the test of time well; sacrificing fruit and morphing into funky sour oak. My only complaint is how high the carbonation level was, though that significantly got better as it sat and breathed.

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Photo of drabmuh
4.03/5  rDev -6.9%
look: 4.5 | smell: 4 | taste: 4 | feel: 4 | overall: 4

Partial vertical made possible by three separate people. I am reviewing batch 2, 3, and 4.

Beers were poured into wine glasses side by side. None of them had a head or lacing. All were light yellow in color.

Batch 2 - very cloudy and hazy. I'm not convinced that it was yeast from being disturbed from the bottom of the bottle. The aroma was quite bretty, Brett b I think mostly, quite funky with a hint of acetic tinge. Beer is oddly thin with a good forward lactic acid, no sweetness, mild tartness.

Batch 3 - very clear and highly carbonated. It looked like champagne in the glass. Very bright. This beer's aroma was quite sweeter with cherries and oak. Beer was still quite sour, less brett and funky, dominant lactic with a trail of acetic.

Batch 4 - The newest batch just released a few weeks ago. This beer is cloudy again, moderately carbonated. Aroma is strongly sweet, much much sweeter than the other two. Mostly lactic, not much acetic in this one. The aroma is the strongest out of the three, nice. This beer has quite the brett bite to it, good funk, some oakiness I didn't detect in the others.

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Photo of berkey
4.02/5  rDev -7.2%
look: 4 | smell: 4.5 | taste: 4 | feel: 4 | overall: 3.5

Received as an awesome extra from a generous trader, thanks Joe. 12.7 oz bottle of batch four. Sampled from a tulip glass 10/10/10.

Clean blonde in color, forms a bright white head that dissapears completely almost immediately, can't call that a defect in the style of course. Carbonation is very fine but appears to be pretty active.

Very pleasant and rich bouquet of aromas on this beer. Brett earthiness is a little better developed than I expected for what I gather is a relatively young wild ale; even if I suspect some age would do this beer a lot of good. Fruity grape character is a bit stronger than many beers I've tried that are brewed with grapes. Spices also add a lot to the aroma on this one.

Because of the aroma I had some concern the spices might be overbearing but they're relatively well integrated. Although there's a pleasant tartness on the aftertaste this isn't quite as sour as I prefer and I have a feeling the grape sweetness may have something to do with that. This is a broad style though so there's room for beers like this and it is pretty enjoyable on it's own merits. The more I drink the more vinous it starts to taste, not certain to what degree the acidity or grapes are responsible.

Altogether another very well made beer from Captain Lawrence. I'm glad I had the opportunity to check this one out.

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Photo of alcstradamus
4.02/5  rDev -7.2%
look: 4 | smell: 4.5 | taste: 4 | feel: 4 | overall: 3.5

Batch 3

Pours a glowing golden color in my tulip with a quickly dying finger of head. Somewhat murky, effervescent carbonation

Nose is tart and funky tangerine, hints of sour peach, very clean and crisp.

Taste is not really sour, definitely more tart than anything. Honestly, not even as funky as I expected. Some very crisp fruits from apples to tangerines to grapes to banana. Band-aids at the very end of the finish. Slightly bitter in the aftertaste only. Very nice.

Mouthfeel is medium bodied, crisp stinging carbonation but luckily not too much of it. Finish isn't too dry, which is a positive for me. Drinkability is average to good...enough flavor to make me reach for more and tartness kept in check enough to not kill my palate. This is a very fine beer, no doubt about it. Only real negative was that it didn't improve after as it warmed. This one was best when it was first served. Started to get a bit of waxiness as it neared room temperature.

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Photo of Gtreid
4.02/5  rDev -7.2%
look: 4 | smell: 4.5 | taste: 4 | feel: 4 | overall: 3.5

Big thanks to McDiddyPop for crackin' this one open at the Hunahpu release. Poured into my Stone IRS tulip.

A: Cloudy wheat color. The pour drops a two finger slightly, off white head that leaves some great spotty lace.

A: Sour funk, lemons, white grapes, wine barrels, and earth. Smells like this one could be mouth puckering.

T: Yep, mouthpuckering. Sour, barnyard funk. Big sour citrus and earthy, grassy hops. It just makes your tastebuds stand on end. Finishes very dry and tart.

M: Light body, sharp and acidic. High carbonation.

D and overall impression: Could not have too many of these, the sourness would just destroy my tastebuds. Overall, this is a pretty solid example of the style. I like my sours with just a touch more sweetness to balance out the tartness, but nonetheless a good brew. Skal.

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

Received this in a monster box from 6daysbottomocean in the Whale BIF 3. This is a 375ml bottle from batch 3. Thanks again!

Appearance- Pours a hazy bright straw color out of the bottle with lots of beading carbonation in the body of the beer. About a quarter finger of fizzy white head caps the beer and dies back in short order to a thin ring around the edges. Carbonation remains in beading throughout however.

Smell- Lots of mildly tart white wine grapes and a little bit of Granny Smith apple up front on the nose, with just a touch of funk. Some barrel mildly evident as well. Finishes with just a whiff of lactic acidity.

Taste- Similar to the nose in that I get a lot of slightly tart white wine/green grapes and grapeskin on the palate. Again a little bit of funk and some mild oak flavors from the barrel as well but nothing overwhelming in those departments. Finishes with a very mild tartness.

Mouthfeel/Drinkability- Mouthfeel is adequate for the style and not over-carbonated, which was nice. Drinkability was quite decent as well as it went down easily and unoffensively.

Overall, a very solid and somewhat mild American wild ale. I enjoyed it and thought the flavor profile was somewhat similar to RR Temptation (however, I will say I think I prefer Temptation). Would be a good introduction to sours for somewhat who is beginning to enjoy the style but can't handle anything too acidic.

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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 JDV
4/5  rDev -7.6%
look: 4 | smell: 4 | taste: 4 | feel: 4 | overall: 4

Was lucky enough to try a bit of this at Flossmoor before DLD, and thanks to whoever it was that allowed me a sample, as I've forgotten... Poured a hazy yellowish color. Smell was tart, smooth, mild funkiness. Taste was smooth, slightly funky and deliciously tart and drinkable. Reminded me of beatification, but even slightly more smooth and drinkable. Nice sour grapefruit flavor. This was quite good.

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Cuvee De Castleton from Captain Lawrence Brewing Co.
96 out of 100 based on 225 ratings.
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