Melange A Trois - Reserve Series Aged In French Oak Chardonnay Barrels | Nebraska Brewing Company

104 Reviews
Melange A Trois - Reserve Series Aged In French Oak Chardonnay BarrelsMelange A Trois - Reserve Series Aged In French Oak Chardonnay Barrels

Brewed by:
Nebraska Brewing Company
Nebraska, United States

Style: Belgian Strong Pale Ale

Alcohol by volume (ABV): 11.30%

Availability: Rotating

Notes / Commercial Description:
Our first beer in the Reserve Series, Melange A Trois begins with a wonderfully big Strong Belgian-Style Blonde Ale and moves into the extraordinary category through an additional 6 month French Oak Chardonnay Wine Barrel maturation. The essense of Chardonnay permeates while a subtle sweetness remains from the Ale itself. Oak tannins combine to create a fascinating mesh of dry, sweet, and wine-like character. One of our favorites!

Added by RedHaze on 11-16-2008

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Reviews: 104 | Ratings: 386
Photo of ChrisCage
4.71/5  rDev +12.4%
look: 4.25 | smell: 5 | taste: 4.75 | feel: 4.5 | overall: 4.5

Finally opened up my 2010 vintage!

A- This has an amazingly nice looking head that is off white in color and starts out about 3 fingers thick....nice uniform bubbles retains very well, settling into a one finger thick head and becomes pillowy dense! The color of the brew is yeast hazed bronze with soft carbonation rising to the top and the lacing is alright...nothing special in the grand scheme of things. Overall, this is a well above average looking Ale!

S- There is plenty of Chardonnay barrel sweetness that borders on the fence between wine grapes and tropical/orchard fruit (banana, apricot, pears).....smooth dry spice (pepper), hints of wild funk, and a peachy apple finish. This is rich and very much like a fine wine overall!

T- Initial flavors of oaked Earthiness, Chardonnay wine robustness, creamy biscuit/yeast upfront, slightly boozy in the body, and the yeasty tartness that makes this style what it is, and the finish becomes fruity, with apricot kernel, citrus rind, and throughout, there is a hint of butterscotch and vanilla. Perhaps a soft hopped bitterness ensues on the finish

M/O- This is a highly drinkable Ale that is medium/full bodied, and has awesomely tight carbonation that reminds me of a sparkling Chardonnay spritzer! The alcohol, while noticeable, doesn't overpower but it sure hits you after a glass! This really should be reserved for royalty....I think I fit the bill!! It is so smooth on the palate I cannot believe it....this ages very well for those that may have an older bottle. Will definitely seek this out again if the opportunity arises!!

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Photo of SargeMcCluck
3.95/5  rDev -5.7%
look: 4.5 | smell: 4.5 | taste: 3.5 | feel: 4 | overall: 4

Pours wheat-gold with a thick three fingers of head. Lots of retention and lacing make this a very pretty thing indeed.

The chardonnay is immediately apparent on the nose, layering with Belgian yeast, malt, orange, sour pear and oak to make for a very unique aroma. It reminds me of a crepe suzette or boozy French pastries.

The chardonnay remains upfront on the tongue, matching a strangely sour, vinous character to richer notes of buttery malts, oak and vanilla. I personally found this combination quite divisive, but appreciate the complex craftsmanship all the same.

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Photo of crob3888
4.5/5  rDev +7.4%
look: 4.5 | smell: 4.5 | taste: 4.5 | feel: 4.5 | overall: 4.5

Poured a light golden color with a fluffy white head. Tons of Chardonnay barrel character; vinous, wine, grapes, and earthy oak qualities. Extremely dry finish. Very good beer.

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Photo of Pencible
4.26/5  rDev +1.7%
look: 3.5 | smell: 4.25 | taste: 4.25 | feel: 4.75 | overall: 4.25

A: This poured a nearly opaque gold with some white head.
S: It smelled like dry and tart white grapes, with some musty oak and unripe apricots, and a little vinegar.
T: It tasted like grassy hops and tart white grapes and musty oak, with some unripe apricot and vinegar. It had a clean tart aftertaste.
M: It was oily with smooth natural carbonation. Great body.
D: This was a delicious and complex brew, with hints of saison accenting the sour light Belgian character. The body was solid and the finish was relatively smooth. So it wasn't difficult to drink, although this beer should be sipped. Age may help. Perfect for a warm spring day. Recommended.

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Photo of tbryan5
3.97/5  rDev -5.3%
look: 4.25 | smell: 3.5 | taste: 4 | feel: 4.25 | overall: 4.25

A- Hazy Peach and gold color with a white head. GREAT lacing!
S- Citrusy and peppery with the oak and tart funk of Chardonnay.
T- Peachy with orange citrus. White pepper, and nice oak.
M- Medium with light -medium carbonation.
D- A gracefully aged Belgian that lets the barrel shine while being really drinkable. Great beer.

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Photo of mwilbur
4.77/5  rDev +13.8%
look: 5 | smell: 4.75 | taste: 4.75 | feel: 4.75 | overall: 4.75

Poured from 750 mL bottle into snifter.
A: Pours a clear yellow (with a hint of orange hue) with high carbonation producing a beautiful 2+ inch frothy white head. Excellent retention. Nice thick lacing too. I rarely hand out 5's, but this is perfection.
S: Musty, barnyard funk, and minerals hit the nose from a couple feet away immediately after the pour. Definitely draws you in. Sweet citrus (orange and grapefruit), chardonnay, white pepper, honey malt, dry cracker, and a hint of vanilla and oak. Wow! Has a ton to offer here.
T: Soft sweet orange, must and funk, and white pepper yeast hits first. Then dry cracker, honeyed malt, and chardonnay enter the fray. Followed by oak and vanilla...and lemon curd. And a spritz of grapefruit at the end to round it all out. With warming, almond and clove emerge. Follow through on the promise of the aroma...and then some. Multilayered.
M: Musty, funky, subtly sweet, and with a buttery (vinous) feel. A touch of tartness from the chardonnay. ABV is absurdly well hidden. Medium-heavy body. Nice lingering and maturing on the palate.
D: This was quite the treat. A well thought out and crafted brew. Loads of complexity with extremely well hidden ABV...and yet still amazingly drinkable. Serve at about 50 and take your time enjoying this one. Fresh bread and fruit in a bottle. One of the best beers I've had in the last few years. Well done, Nebraska BC! Seek it out!

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Photo of IvoryFoxhole
4.19/5  rDev 0%
look: 4.25 | smell: 4 | taste: 4.25 | feel: 4.25 | overall: 4.25

25 ounce bottle. Poured into Lawson's tulip glass.

L: Definitely more of an amber than a straw blonde look. 3F head with good retention and lots of lacing and a cap.

S: Yeast, lemon, orange, vanilla, oak barrel, chardonnay, and light malts all make an appearance. Kind of a super Saison.

T: Light citrus up front along with vanilla. Chardonnay and the oaky barrel come in for the finish. Almost no alcohol evident.

F: Medium-bodied, light to medium-carbonation. Well-balanced. Very little heat for 11% ABV. Most impressive. Oh yes, be careful on this, as you will want to drink it faster than you should.

O: Very nice aged Belgian. Solidly constructed with good flavors and balance. Who knew Nebraska could produce this?

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Photo of rickrem
4.27/5  rDev +1.9%
look: 4.25 | smell: 4 | taste: 4.5 | feel: 4 | overall: 4.25

Definitely something different.

Not really a bit Belgian fan but this one was quite varied in style.

Light golden in color with a fairly white head. ( on Draft ) Decent lacing all the way down.

Aroma and taste was quite different from what I expected. Didn't have the 'root beery' taste that I equate to a lot of Belgian styles. This was more in the line of a Bier de Garde for me. Almost a great after dinner beer with a touch of sweetness. Really picked up the oak / chardonnay aspect.

Overall, something different and surprisingly tasty.

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Photo of HattedClassic
4.16/5  rDev -0.7%
look: 4 | smell: 4.25 | taste: 4.25 | feel: 4 | overall: 4

The beer pours a nice creamy and white head that takes a while to dissipate. The beer itself is a nice clear medium yellow that is nice to look at but nothing to look at.

The smell and taste are incredibly fantastic. The beer has some really nice vanilla notes that come out really strongly in the smell and taste; making it the dominant note but it's not so strong as to bury the other notes. The beer has a light orange bitterness that mixes well with the banana like notes from the Belgian yeast,. The wine notes are fairly strong, such as the vanilla, and the white acidic grapes give off a light tart apple note. Overall, it's a very good mix of different notes coming together to make a pretty good beer.

The taste is wonderful and hovers between wine and beer. It's a medium bodied beer but it's on the lighter side of medium. The beer also has a very nice fluffy feel from the carbonation. The feel is more creamy like a chardonnay.

Overall, a very good beer and worth picking up at least once. The mix between the two creates a unique beer that manages to capture the best parts of wine and mix it with the best of Belgian ales. Go for it.

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Photo of tempest
4.25/5  rDev +1.4%
look: 4.25 | smell: 4.25 | taste: 4.25 | feel: 4.25 | overall: 4.25

My bottle was aged roughly 15 months. There's a hint of oxidation, but at this point it adds to the spicy character. This beer is dry and smooth with a big oak aroma. The flavor is doughy, a little buttery (not like diacetyl), with dried citrus peel and mild oak. This doesn't have the typical acidic bite of a Chardonnary barrel beer. It's far too easy drinking for the strength, not that I'm complaining.

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

Poured from bottle into tulip. Surprisingly not much head. Orange/brown color. Fairly carbonated. Nectar like quality of taste, smooth, and saison-y.

Very good.

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Photo of SD-Alefan
4.32/5  rDev +3.1%
look: 3.75 | smell: 4.25 | taste: 4.5 | feel: 4.25 | overall: 4.25

Enjoyed on tap. Pours a slightly hazy/cloudy golden straw color with a plentiful creamy head that leaves lots of lacing behind.
The aroma is a bit like a wine-infused Saison with grape and barrel notes alongside a bit of farmyard funk. Also hints of spice and ripe tropical fruit.
Tasty brew with some slight tart grape, some yeasty funk, a bit of very ripe mango sweetness and a hint of mild pepper.
Mouthfeel is light, crisp, dry and refreshing.

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Photo of Slatetank
4.4/5  rDev +5%
look: 4 | smell: 4.5 | taste: 4.5 | feel: 4.25 | overall: 4.25

I shared this bottle on New Year's Eve, enjoyed chilled in a flute-type goblet

The color is a hazy looking golden with voluminous white head with lace that sticks to the glass. The smell has a lovely citrus and vinous character with aroma that has a hint of floral/honey-like ester perhaps from the chardonnay with slight tropical yeasty ester. The feel is very good, wonderful with light funk and smooth woody tannin and juicy sour tanginess with slight malt with combination of yeast spice and fruit quality.

The taste has a tangy tropical flavor with juicy pineapple-like semi-dry yet fruity with some barrel flavor with chardonnay adding a light sweet vinous element and gentle woody accent in the middle with slight spice from the yeast and low malt sweetness as it finishes mostly dry. Overall I think this is a great blend of mildly sour and wine-like flavor with tropical fruit from the yeast adding nice complexity.

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Photo of enrique_m
3.9/5  rDev -6.9%
look: 4 | smell: 4 | taste: 3.75 | feel: 4 | overall: 4

Poured this brew into a wine glass and it poured a light golden color with about 3 inches of head. You get the chardonnay smell right off the bottle and the taste is the justpp like the smell with a nice bitter finish. Overall this beer taste and feels like a champagne champagne so it's a good substitute.

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Photo of AtrumAnimus
3.59/5  rDev -14.3%
look: 4.5 | smell: 4.75 | taste: 2.75 | feel: 4.25 | overall: 3.25

THe pour is the color of 24 carat gold with a think, lively and long lived head that is tinged gold as well. The head is taking forever to settle. The head eventually thins down to a nice, shaving cream rich level of foam. The lacing is more of a blanketing, too thick to stick.

The nose is crisp Chardonnay with oak notes that have a hint of what i suspect is Challenger Hops. There are also notes of grass, pine, wet earth and Floral notes hinting at a lot of fructose.

The taste is dominated by the chardonnay flavor of the cask aging with some bitter hops in the finish. I would rate the taste as Interesting, The combination of the Belgian style ale, strong hops and Chardonnay results is flavor that reminds me of a sour. SInce i do not like sours, I am not digging the flavor.

The moutfeel is very rich and one of the better parts of the beer that belies the belgian style it is based on.

Overall it is a fascinating experiment, but not a very rin kable beer. KEep trying Nebraska Brewing. I think you are on to something. However, I believe you can do better.

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Photo of blindtiger24
4.09/5  rDev -2.4%
look: 4 | smell: 4.25 | taste: 4 | feel: 4.25 | overall: 4

Wine, apple juice, belgian yeast, esters on the nose. Foamy pure white head. Golden, hazy, some carbonation. Wheat, strong belgian yeast and spice flavors, and white wine. On the juicy side initially, but some dryness from the yeast and spice. Creamy. Warm on the throat.

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

Belgian yeast. Tastes a lot like wine. Oak and tannins. Grapes. White wine. Champagne yeast. Green apples.

Very much like a wine or champagne. Solid offering.

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Photo of pat61
4.5/5  rDev +7.4%
look: 4.5 | smell: 4.5 | taste: 4.5 | feel: 4.5 | overall: 4.5

L: Hazy copper gold with a 2” sticky foam collar. S: Fruity, musty, wine notes. T: Light malt, slightly sweet, light funk, light apricot to peach, Belgian yeast. F: Medium body with very fine, soft carbonation. O: the carbonation and body make this beer stand out.

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

Out of 750ml bottle.

Appearance - Golden yellow hue.

Smell - Oak, Wine and Belgian yeast.

Taste - Wine, grapes, Belgian yeast, light fruits, champagne... WOW!

Mouthfeel - Medium attenuation. Medium carbonation.

Overall - One of the best Belgians out there. Definitely the best Belgian Strong from Nebraska!!

Grade (B+)

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

Poured from a 750 ml brown bottle into a clear glass tulip. 2014 vintage. Purchased at Wine Warehouse (Charlottesville, VA).

A: Clear lemon-yellow with 1/2 finger of white head, tightly bubbled with average retention and a delicate stripe of lacing.

S: Exteremly vinous nose with a lot of green grape along with apple, pear and light vanilla notes with herbal hopping

T: Flavor is beery but with a lot of Chardonnay character, light fruits like apple, pear, apricot; hop flavor is low and mainly floral and herbal, with low-medium bitterness. Vanilla and barrel-oak character is strongest at first and seems to wane with warming. Reminds me of a Bruery White Oak light with heavy grapes.

M: Smooth and very drinkable with low carbonation and medium body. ABV of 11.3% is barely noticeable.

O: Melange A Trois is a really unique beer that I am glad I had a chance to try. It is very flavorful and aromatic. It's not really up my alley so to speak, but those who like an interesting barrel character will like this beer a lot. Spendy but worth it for a chance to check it out.

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Photo of clayrock81
4.09/5  rDev -2.4%

Poured a semi-clear golden body with one finger head and has a spicy, oaky, tart (wine-like with a white grape feel) aroma.
There is a light yeast presence that gives off a touch of orange citric one finds in a Belgian ale, but this beer has more of a sour taste/feel to it.
Touches of tropical fruit sweetness add balance but are in background to a not overpowering tart/sour beer that has a good amount of wood in it.
Finishes slightly sour but there is not enough sour/tart/acidic taste to this beer to where it becomes too hard to drink, instead always just leaving you wanting more and this comes partly from the fact that the sweet aspects are just enough to prevent a puckering beer.
Sharpness in the beer thanks to lively carbonation perk up the backend and I must say the ABV is hidden.

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Photo of Sludgeman
4.38/5  rDev +4.5%
look: 4.5 | smell: 4 | taste: 4.5 | feel: 4.5 | overall: 4.5

Purchased in Wichita. Poured into a very small white wine glass.

A – Pours a cloudy orange yellowish with a white frothy, mousey two-finger head. Heavy lacing. 4.5

S – Big chardonnay aroma, citrus, pear, oak. So all wine-line qualities but then moderated with some malty funk. (fruity, but not too spicy). 4

T – Lemon, malty, with some citrus hoppiness, a bit of spicy heat. Maybe a bit too much white wine, but still a fairly balanced beer. 4.5

MF – medium body, dry finish, a bit creamy, at 10% ABV a bit of lasting alcohol heat in the finish. 4.5

O – This really works. A complex beer that crosses many stylistic lines. An Orval/chardonnay cocktail with a squeeze of lemon. Some champagne-like and saison-like qualities. Bottle conditioned ++ 4.5

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Photo of patre_tim
4.42/5  rDev +5.5%
look: 4.25 | smell: 4 | taste: 4.75 | feel: 4 | overall: 4.5

A: Soft gold with a light haze and a moderate amount of fine bubbles. Huge 5 finger off white head looks like melting vanilla ice cream.

S: Belgian yeasts, particularly like those found in many saisons. Light grassiness, lemony, heavy oaken barrel quality. A light sweetness and a light funkiness all at the same time. The funkiness is like farmyard, frankly, like a manure pile.

T: Wow. Soft and balanced with the light lemon juice, Belgian yeast qualities, the oak barrel blending softly together. A little funky farmyard and grassiness for sure, then a slight metallic note on the first sip but never again. Black pepper near the end. Light sweetness as well. Really hides the alcohol but it burns for sure in the throat.

M: Medium body with a solid substance to it, medium low carbonation. Dry finish, much like a white wine.

O: Excellent brew. This one is up there in my top 20 beers of all time. Very delicate and balanced, well thought up, well put together brew. Got this in Kansas City Aug 9th, 2014 and drank here the same day.

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Photo of laituegonflable
3.6/5  rDev -14.1%
look: 3.5 | smell: 3.5 | taste: 3.75 | feel: 3 | overall: 3.75

Pours an orange-tweaked gold, trickle of bead. Head is whispy, not much left but comes back decently with a swill. Quite nice.

Smells quite Belgian. Touch of honey, with organic lawn notes, some rubber and slight acidity. Bit bitter/phenolic, but refreshing enough.

Taste is far more on the bitter side, with a big champagney tartness upfront, then a big spice hit midway - notes of pepper and clove, then phenolic rubber and aged riesling on the back. Really quite vinous, and enjoyably complex.

Quite fizzy, a little stripping back. Too lively, like a hooker on crack.

Decent notes, nice complexity. A good wine-beer bridger.

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Photo of StaveHooks
3.85/5  rDev -8.1%
look: 4 | smell: 4 | taste: 3.75 | feel: 4 | overall: 3.75

Thanks to Yoshi Optimator for this one!
22oz bottle served in a Prairie Teku

A - pours a cloudy golden body with a small white cap that retains very well.

S - Chardonnay right out of the gate, white grapes, pears, greens, white oak, citrus, acidic.

T - Bitter Chardonnay, mustard greens, peppery alcohol, tangy pale malts, Belgian yeast, under ripened bananas, white grapes, pears, lactic buttery flavor, under ripened peaches and pears. Light buttery oak on the finish.

M - medium body, very creamy carbonation, very nice.

This has taken on a lot of Chardonnay characteristics. Well rounded unripened fruit character with a oaky and buttery lactic acid character. Enjoyed this one.

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Melange A Trois - Reserve Series Aged In French Oak Chardonnay Barrels from Nebraska Brewing Company
4.19 out of 5 based on 386 ratings.
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