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: 385
Photo of draheim
4.53/5  rDev +8.1%
look: 5 | smell: 4.5 | taste: 4.5 | feel: 4.5 | overall: 4.5

750mL bottle (2010) into a tulip.

Pours a clear lemony golden color with a thick, sudsy white head that leaves behind beautiful, sparkling lacing. Bright, effervescent carbonation rises from the bottom of the glass. This is a damn gorgeous beer, spot-on for the style.

Aroma is spicy Belgian yeast, fresh lemon zest, and banana peel. As it warms the wine starts coming through.

Taste brings forth the vinous, slightly tart/sour Chardonnay barrel aging. Wow. Green apples and white wine blend wonderfully with the pale malt and Belgian yeast. Carbonation brings a sharp dry bite and a clean finish.

Overall just a delicious, special beer I'm glad I had a chance to try.

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Photo of Khazadum
4.2/5  rDev +0.2%
look: 4.5 | smell: 4.5 | taste: 4 | feel: 4.5 | overall: 4

Awesome white grape and skins open up deliciously. Malty, grains of grape.nuts, sweet pineapple, candied Sugar, toffee. It smells. Like the best mix for a tripel.

Now its more tripel than chardonnay. Opens dry oxidized grain, candied sugar, sweet apples. Quick transition to grape skins, tannin wood, and just a hint of vinous white wine.

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Photo of JustinMatthew
4.97/5  rDev +18.6%
look: 4.5 | smell: 5 | taste: 5 | feel: 5 | overall: 5

Poured from the 750ml bottle to an Ommegang tulip glass. Hazy yellow in color with about two fingers worth of white head. Smells of Belgian yeast, white grapes, light oak and an obvious tart presence. Taste is perfect. You get a little of everything from sip to sip.. Belgian yeast spice, Floral notes, orange peel, some vanilla and oak subtleties. Slightly acidic and tart. Well carbonated, dosent detract from the complexities at all. This is pretty much everything I want from a beer. Price tag is steep so it's not something I'll be drinking as much as I'd like.

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Photo of OWSLEY069
4.47/5  rDev +6.7%
look: 4 | smell: 4.5 | taste: 4.5 | feel: 4.5 | overall: 4.5

Pours a hazy yellow to orange-ish color with an off white head. In the aroma, nice Belgian candy sugar, but over ridden by chardonnay. In the taste, a small dry fruitiness, which is muted by chardonnay flavors and a subtle alcohol presence. A smooth and medium to bigger bodied mouthfeel, with a small dry chardonnay and small alcohol presence in the aftertaste. Like drinking a chardonnay, but a but boozier and more body.

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Photo of ShanePB
4.08/5  rDev -2.6%
look: 4.5 | smell: 4 | taste: 4 | feel: 4.5 | overall: 4

750 ml bottle
Served into a cervoise glass

A: Semi-hazy golden orange colored body with a huge rocky, foamy and fluffy white head. The dissipation was moderate in pace and left great lacing behind. Nice retention cap too.

S: Dry chardonnay, sweet malt, candi sugar, lemon and a bit of musk. Not much of the barrel quality coming through other than the chardonnay influence. Overall just a really a nice smelling beer.

T: Chardonnay hits first along with it's oak barrel counterpart. The sweet Belgian-style pale ale is underneath with plenty of candi sugar, lemongrass and a slightly earthy bitterness towards the back end. Remarkably done and highly drinkable.

M: Well carbonated but still retains a medium body. Nice and smooth on the palate, cleansing and dry in the finish.

This was a great surprise and to my knowledge, my first beer from Nebraska. I hear a lot of good things about their Reserve Series and so far I'm very impressed. I really love the wine influence on the beer, a perfect match.

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Photo of rudzud
4.15/5  rDev -1%
look: 4.5 | smell: 4.5 | taste: 4 | feel: 4 | overall: 4

Enjoyed at a beer tasting at Julio's. Poured into a small glass. Reviewed from notes.

A - Pour is a nice golden straw hue with a big fluffy head that fades to leave lots of nice sticky side lacing.

S - Smell is big on the chardonnay barrels. Lots of grapey vinous notes with some light belgian yeast as well. Nose is incredibly inviting.

T - Taste is really nice. More of those french oak chardonnary barrels big time. Good grape with light musk notes. Some subtle pepperyness and belgian yeasts like your average saison but that chardonnay really comes through.

M - Nice carbonation with a a very good dry finish.

O - Overall this was quite the enjoyable beer. Going to have to try and trade for some!

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Photo of Mantooth
4.22/5  rDev +0.7%
look: 4.5 | smell: 5 | taste: 4 | feel: 3.5 | overall: 4

Poured from a bomber into my free Stella tulip glass (check 'em out online, you may still be able to score a freebie).

A: Beautifully packaged, wine-like label with a nice description of the beer, ample head, hazy orange color with very nice lacing and retention.

S: CHARDONNAY - from the moment the cap leaves its perch, French oak, orange peel, banana (it's a Belgian).

T: Orange peel, banana, oak, plum, raisin. Surprisingly - not incredibly boozy for a 10% brew.

O: A very nice beer that has taken on a lot of the characteristics of the barrels it was aged in. I recommend trying this at least once.

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Photo of ChainGangGuy
4.75/5  rDev +13.4%
look: 4.5 | smell: 4.5 | taste: 5 | feel: 5 | overall: 4.5

Appearance: Pours out a crystal clear, yellow-hued body with a foaming, tall, white head.

Smell: The chardonnay wine barrel treatment is simply bulging in the aroma, ahead of the lightly sweet-scented golden barley and hint of finely fragrant herbs and flowers giving a quality of hand-crafted artisan soaps, the kind people keep in an ornate bowl in the bathroom, are in small shapes, and you're not allowed to use.

Taste: A wonderful blend of sweet, soft as cream barley and a great chardonnay with a gentle oakiness. Floral accents, a hint of citric lemon vanilla creme, and some perfumy touches. A little, bright 'pop' of acidity. Light spiciness and some more oak showing on the wine spritzed finish.

Mouthfeel: Medium-bodied. Highly carbonated, very easy and breezy along the tongue.

Overall: The chardonnay character is pairing perfectly with the strong golden ale with just the right amount of carbonation. Hardly any showing of the supposed 10% alcohol. It's outstanding all around. I know it's early still, but can I go ahead and declare my favorite new beer of the year?

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Photo of ChrisPro
3.54/5  rDev -15.5%
look: 5 | smell: 3.5 | taste: 3.5 | feel: 3 | overall: 3.5

Tasted blind as part of Blind BIF #6
Blind beer #3 from sholland119

750 mL capped bottle into my Narke tulip shared with my wife

A - Murky dark straw with a gorgeous three fingered cream colored head. Pretty sure the cap would sit on this pillow-top. Lacing just covers the glass as I drink. Beautiful beer. Wish it was slightly more clear...Okay, so that was just chill haze. Looks perfect after warming. 5.0

S - Hello brett! We've got some hay, a bit of lemon, tons of fresh-baked bread yeasty notes. Saison/farmhouse is where we're at from the nose. 3.5

T - Interesting...Kind of like lemon pudding to start, then an incredibly funky taste on the back of the tongue as I swallow. It's almost like saurkraut for a second. Then lemony-vanilla finish, with kind of an oaky taste. maybe even some bourbon? Possibly this vanilla just from virgin oak barrels. Still thinking an oak-aged farmhouse ale of some sort. This is incredibly complex to say the least. (sadly, one sip and my wife informs me I'm all on my own on this 750)...Later after warming, there's a ton of grape going on here. Really tastes like a sparkling wine with brett. Chardonnay anyone?. 3.5

M - If this beer were a superhero, its name would be Superfizz! This thing is like accupuncture on my tongue, but actually works. Sadly, there is quite a bit of heat that work against it. 3.0

O - Tons going on with this beer and it seems like a great example of the style. Sadly, I'm just not a huge fan of the style, but this beer makes me wish I liked them more. Definitely more drinkable as it warms and I like it more and more. The weird funky yeast reminds me of that distinct fantome, so that'd be the only guess I have, but the brown 750 rules that out. Pretty awesome beer to drink blind. 3.5

If I had to guess something, maybe the evolution migration fall 2011 aged in chardonnay barrels.

The reveal: 2010 Nebraska Melange a Trois

Well, got the chardonnay barrel right but never would've guessed this. With 10% ABV, this beer beer actually drinks much better than the heat indicates. Pretty solid beer.

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Photo of randylangford
4.65/5  rDev +11%
look: 5 | smell: 5 | taste: 4.5 | feel: 4.5 | overall: 4.5

This a grat beer to kick off my New Years celebration.

A: Beautiful golden straw colour with a full slowly desecending froth.
S: The smell is heavy with chardonnay.
T: The chardonnay comes through in the exact amount that I wanted so that it compliments without overpowering.
M: Light and fizzy on the tongue reminding me of wine.
O: I'm really glad that I tried this beer because it reminds me just how versatile beer is to great creativity combined with quality craftmanship.

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Photo of KMcG
4.28/5  rDev +2.1%
look: 5 | smell: 4.5 | taste: 4 | feel: 4 | overall: 4.5

A: Opaque straw, wonderfully beady head two fingers thick, after it dissipates there is a fine luxurious lace. It's inviting so much so that several people asked what I was drinking.

S: Fruity and sweet.  Grapes, dank Belgium yeast, and clear Chardonnay character.

T: White wine, peppery like some Saisons, oaky, honey and raisins.  There is a toastiness and a hint of clove.  Quite complex, but strong wine-like character.

M: Fine carbonation, crisp, dry and medium body. 

Overall, fantastic!

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

This is compliments of Paulo from the Archives, gracias. Poured with a nice, off white, fine, foamy, thick, frothy, off white head that lasts and plenty of lace. Color is a slightly hazy, burnished yellow amber. Aroma is a fragrant mix of yeast, fruit, hop, malt, bread dough. Flavor is much like nose with carbonic tang; yeast and carbonic tang standing out. Body is just as it should be, ditto carbonation.

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

750ml bottle poured into a darkness snifter shared with fellow BA's at our last tasting.

pours out a hazy pale golden color with a nice white head. good retention with some lace left behind.

very vinious and wine like, lots of that chardonnay barrel coming through. some phenoly belgian yeast and a bit of sweet candied malt.

lots of white wine, grapey flavors, fruity, phenoly belgian yeast, very similar to the aroma. slightly tart. a bit of sweet candied malt.

medium bodied, a bit dry and tart finish.

a very nice belgian, so much of that chardonnay barrel coming through. very much like the other nebraska beers ive tried.

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Photo of patm1986
4.45/5  rDev +6.2%
look: 5 | smell: 5 | taste: 4 | feel: 4.5 | overall: 4.5

Oh, here we go.

This baby is bright. deep, deep golden orange. thick, inch and half head, which settles very nicely into a rolling, swirling form of residue that sticks to the glass for what will seem like the entirety of the glass. this is a glorious looking golden ale.

i mean, i'd call this elegant, but i'd definitely call this complex. wow, man. coriander, a little nutmeg, candied sugar, white grapes, grass, lemon, orange, maple/oak barrel/bourbon sweetness, FUNK. whoooaaa.

oak sweetness, maple syrup, acidic-acidy-acid, lemon, candied lemon, white grape--huge chardonnay character--that belgian funk creeps into the fold at the tail end. big burn.

big time. this is the biggest pale ale, golden ale, or belgian strong i've had. huge mouth. huge burn. so complex. with warmth, this baby does mellow, but she thickens up to a creamy, rich state so quickly, it's really incredible.

really excellent. i didn't know what to expect besides the token comparison to temptation. this is not temptation. this is big, bold, and complex in terms of the varied characteristics.
this is goood.

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Photo of Urbancaver
4.02/5  rDev -4.1%
look: 4 | smell: 4.5 | taste: 4 | feel: 4 | overall: 3.5

Bottle courtesy of of Chris. Glad to tick Nebraska. Pours a murky yellow. Fairly pale. Smells tart.. Slightly funky. A nice oakiness on the nose. Tastes sweet and floral. Tart but not super sour. Lots going on with this one. Decent mouthfeel. Overall very enjoyable but not something i would seek out.

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Photo of HopHead84
4.17/5  rDev -0.5%
look: 4 | smell: 4.5 | taste: 4 | feel: 4.5 | overall: 4


Thanks to Charles for sharing.

A: Cloudy yellow with a big fizzy white head. Lots of lacing.

S: Peach and apricot with sugar notes. Oak accompanies Chardonnay. Light floral notes and a little grass. The fruit smells fantastic, a bit like a peach pixie stick.

T: Even more peach and apricot in the flavor with a firm sugary sweetness. Lots of oak and a nice Chardonnay presence. Malt imparts bread and alcohol is not shy.

M: Medium body with upper moderate carbonation.

Overall: I want to dislike this because of the absurd price tag, but it's quite good.

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Photo of kevanb
4.27/5  rDev +1.9%
look: 4 | smell: 4.5 | taste: 4.5 | feel: 3.5 | overall: 4

Poured this celebratory ale after brewing my first batch of beer at home. It pours a really nice darker golden straw color, like a very light honey color. Massive head on this guy, that leaves incredible lacing. It smells really fantastic, white grapes from the Chardonnay barrels but spiced well like a golden Belgian double or tripel would be, nice bits of yeast and grain come through as well, very pleasant. Flavors are really interesting and fairly unique to most things I’ve tried. Starts with spice and yeast that gets sweeter as it hits the back of your tongue. White grapes and some oak appear at the end and add a sweet yet tart finish. This beer isn’t sour although many have described it as such, but its quite tart and fairly acidic yet it doesn’t resonate in the same way a beer like Russian River Temptation does.

Verdict: This is really a fantastic beer. It has a great body and some really interesting flavors going on and the slight oak flavors really compliment it well. It’s definitely expensive but for a fun occasion it was worth it.

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Photo of srandycarter
4.03/5  rDev -3.8%
look: 4.5 | smell: 4 | taste: 4 | feel: 4 | overall: 4

A - Cloudy straw, huge pillow of white head, some cling lace.

S - Small tartness, malty, nice mellow smell.

T - Strawlike , malty, small twang at end.

M - Nice balance, no overpowering flavors. Good clean finish. Good carb. Medium to light body.

D -Very easy and masks abv quite well. Tasty!

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Photo of MasterSki
4.2/5  rDev +0.2%
look: 4.5 | smell: 4.5 | taste: 4 | feel: 4.5 | overall: 4

Bottle from mikeyv35. Served in a Bell's tulip. 2010 Vintage

A - Almost perfect for the style. Big orange-tinged foam settles to a chunky meringue-like cap, glass-coating lace, and a murky peach juice body. Could use a tiny bit more clarity if anything.

S - Aroma has a ton of white grape - more juice-like than vinous. There's also a hint of phenolic and spicy yeast, citrus, oaky vanilla, and a bit of stone fruit malt character. Alcohol is pretty well hidden although it comes out as the bee reaches room temperature, and I appreciate that the Chardonnay influence isn't buttery like many other beers I've tried.

T - Taste is a little less interesting. Oak, stone fruits, some peppery, phenolic yeast, light vinous character. It's a little spicier than I prefer and loses some of the sweetness that I enjoyed in the aroma.

M - Moderate carbonation, full-bodied, with light tannic dryness and warming alcohol present. Otherwise quite smooth and creamy.

D - Drank about half the bottle myself, and used the rest to whip up some awesome quinoa. Not super drinkable at 10%, but quite enjoyable and something I'd definitely have again. Best offering I've had from Nebraska Brewing and worth checking out if you're into this sort of beer.

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Photo of Brewmeist
4.55/5  rDev +8.6%
look: 4.5 | smell: 4.5 | taste: 4.5 | feel: 5 | overall: 4.5

Quite an interesting little treasure i stumbled upon. 25oz into snifter, what else is new?

Melange is Golden/yellow, slightly cloudy, micro bubbly. Had a good head and lacing...impressive for an aged beer. Smells of sweet, and sour. The barrel aging is evident immediately. A boozy champagne/belgian strong. This is a sipper, had a tart sourness about it backed up by a light sweet and dry champagne finish...really beautiful. Overall this is a must purchase. It's really a unique styling of beer, that i can say is the first of this genre (other than the matured sake cask beer, this is waay better). For 30 bucks, if you have the means, i suggest giving it a try. Preferably with a pretty gal you've had your eyes on for a while.

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Photo of Patrickbrusil
4.72/5  rDev +12.6%
look: 4 | smell: 4.5 | taste: 5 | feel: 4 | overall: 5

This is a world class beer. The barrel aging is top notch. Truly wonderful vanilla, honey, oaky smells and flavors shin in the nose and the taste. Beautiful mouthfeel, beautiful appearance. Incredible taste.

It is always amazing to be stopped in your shoes by a beer that makes one sit back and realize the beauty of great craft beer.

Get this at all costs.

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Photo of brentk56
3.73/5  rDev -11%
look: 4.5 | smell: 4 | taste: 3.5 | feel: 4 | overall: 3.5

Appearance: Pours a hazy honey color with a massive head; both the retention and the lacing were impressive, as curtains of foam covered the side of the tulip

Smell: The most vinous beer I have ever smelled, with white grapes on the nose, fusel alcohol and hints of oak

Taste: Opens like a wine starting to go to vinegar, with white grape, starfruit and pear, up front; by mid-palate, the acidity takes over, bringing a layer of surprisingly tart vinosity that builds after the swallow, along with touches of oaky vanilla

Mouthfeel: Light to medium body with moderate to high carbonation; warmth in the gullet

Overall: Really wanted to like this beer more than I did but the combination of the tart fruit and the fusel alcohol did not work for me; impressed by the quality and inventiveness of the brewer and look forward to trying other beers from this brewery

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Photo of JoEBoBpr
4.23/5  rDev +1%
look: 4.5 | smell: 4 | taste: 4.5 | feel: 4 | overall: 4

Poured into a tulip glass from a 750ml bottle.

A - Pours a nice cloudy and hazy slightly lemony yellow color with some mild golden straw hints. There is a nice dense and active white head that is about 1.5 inches tall.

S - The aroma is malty and grainy with some nice bready notes. Then there is your typical Belgian spice notes. There is some clove and some pepper. There is also some slight coriander notes as well. Pear and apple juice notes are present. There is a heavy wood aroma as well as a slightly vinous character.

T & M - Taste follows the nose very carefully. Notes of grain and bread with a slight sugary sweetness. Fruit juice is present and a definite boozy warmth is perceived. Some very nice Chardonnay notes are present in the middle and all through the back end. buttery notes with some slight tartness from the white wine. The typical spices of a BSPA are also felt along with some nice oaky notes. The beer is quite funky as well with some nice yeasty notes and a corn husk flavor all throughout. MF is typical of BSPA nice crispness and a tingly bite to it. good full carbonation. Almost like Champagne.

O - Very good brew. Im glad to have tried this BSPA. Good mix with he wood and the wine.

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

opened this one last night while watching harry potter with dylan. a bit much to finish on my own, but it was worth it as by the time it hit room temp it was divine.

deep hazy golden yellow color that was very evident right of the bat. Nice carbonation was easily apparent as champagne like bubbles reached skyward, constantly refreshing a large pillow of white on top. Very slow receded here left behind tons of thick and sticky side glass lace that really just coated the entire inside of the glass.

The aroma was light, airy and nice and hoppy with a great presence to it. Nice light pepper like notes that really punched through as it warmed, allowing that nice, light hoppy bite to really take hold. Some light bread like notes lying underneath o that. The flavor was very well done. Light, with most all of the alcohol very well hidden. It started with a nice lemon zest like hop bite that quickly melded into a spicy and peppery mix of yeast and spices. Some nice touches of light fruit and a really nice and mellow finish, left a clean, dry flavor in it.

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Photo of thagr81us
4.18/5  rDev -0.2%
look: 4.5 | smell: 4 | taste: 4.5 | feel: 3.5 | overall: 4

Big thanks goes out to beeruser for sharing this one with myself and funkydelic during one of our weekly tastings! Served from bottle into a Mikkeller flute. Poured a hazy golden yellow with a one and a half finger off-white head that subsided to half a finger slowly. Maintained phenomenal lacing throughout the glass. The aroma was comprised of sweet malt, citrus, lemon, banana, and spices. The flavor was of sweet malt, citrus, citrus hop, banana, and bread. It had a light feel on the palate with medium carbonation. Overall this was a pretty good brew. The flavor on this one is what surprised me the most with the bready and banana aspect going on. Really put this brew in another league with the other Belgian Strong Pales I have had in the past. The citrus aspect in the flavor and aroma was also quite pleasant and inviting to the beer. Really 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 385 ratings.
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