Papier | The Bruery

BA SCORE
89
very good
224 Ratings
THE BROS
-
no score
Send samples
PapierPapier
BEER INFO

Brewed by:
The Bruery
California, United States
thebruery.com

Style: Old Ale

Alcohol by volume (ABV): 14.50%

Availability: Limited (brewed once)

Notes / Commercial Description:
Papier is our first anniversary ale, loosely brewed in the English-style Old Ale tradition using our house Belgian yeast strain. The traditional first anniversary gift is something made of paper. The Bruery is giving their loyal fans the gift of Papier, their first anniversary ale. Layered with complex flavors of dark fruit,vanilla, oak, and burnt sugar, Papier is a robust ale, surely the perfect beer to mark our first big milestone. Best for sharing, this beer is ideal for cellaring until you have a celebration of your own…if you can wait.

Added by Halcyondays on 05-16-2009

This beer is retired; no longer brewed.

BEER STATS
Ratings:
224
Reviews:
108
Avg:
4.01
pDev:
13.97%
 
 
Wants:
208
Gots:
69
For Trade:
6
User Ratings & Reviews
Sort by:  Recent | High | Low | Top Raters
first ← prev | 1-25 | 26-50 | 51-75  | nextlast
Ratings: 224 |  Reviews: 108
Photo of Sammy
3.65/5  rDev -9%
look: 4 | smell: 4 | taste: 3.5 | feel: 3.5 | overall: 3.5

Bottle at The Ginger Man. Black with little faint lace dots. Faint bourbon aroma. Like a chocolate burboun barleywine. Rich, but a sipper, and would need a whole meal. Not so drinkable right after work. A characteristic is that it is a bit syrupy, slick oily.

 259 characters

Photo of jaydoc
3.9/5  rDev -2.7%

Photo of GRG1313
4.42/5  rDev +10.2%
look: 4 | smell: 4.5 | taste: 4.5 | feel: 4 | overall: 4.5

Pours a dark brown with a smooth tan head. Nose is complex and inviting. Sweet whiskey hits you first and yields to sweet fruit, molasses, vanilla and hints of sweet cherry.

Mouthfeel is big and full although some age will make it a bit "thicker." A bit thinner than one might expect but, again, age will improve this characteristic.

Flavors follow the nose with dark cooked fruit, plums and figs, brown sugar/malt and full of whiskey tones. Big, full bodied and expressive flavors with a full rich finish. This is going to be superb with some age. One can only imagine the rarer barrell aged versions which I will open as part of a tasting...a tasting soon since I'm one who likely won't be able to wait!

This is a brew worth trying now and very much worth following for as long as you can discipline yourself to hold some bottles. This is clearly one of the best quality beers from The Bruery.

 900 characters

Photo of UCLABrewN84
4.19/5  rDev +4.5%
look: 3 | smell: 4 | taste: 4.5 | feel: 3.5 | overall: 4.5

Bottle pour at the Bruery Reserve Society initiation party at The Phoenix Club in Anaheim, CA.

Pours a murky dark brown with no head and no lace. Smell is of malt, fruits, wood, and bourbon. Taste is of malt, dark fruits, wood, and bourbon flavors. This beer has a lower level of carbonation with a medium bodied mouthfeel. Overall, this is a very good old ale and a nice first anniversary beer.

 396 characters

Photo of spycow
3.75/5  rDev -6.5%

Photo of djrn2
4/5  rDev -0.2%

Photo of Knapp85
3.58/5  rDev -10.7%
look: 4 | smell: 3.5 | taste: 3.5 | feel: 4 | overall: 3.5

Had this on 1-12-10. Papier poured out as a light brownish color with a thin head on top. There wasn't a lot of lacing going on here. The smell was giving off a heavy amount of barrel aged aromas. I wasn't able to pick up on much bourbon though. The oak aromas overpowered most of the brew. The taste of the beer was flavorful but didn't really do much to impress me. To me this tasted a lot like a typical barley wine. The mouthfeel wasn't too bad. It had a good amount of body for a beer that's almost 15%. Overall I feel that I should have aged this brew or something. I have a feeling that it would have been much better after a year or more.

 646 characters

Photo of t0rin0
4.25/5  rDev +6%

Photo of oriolesfan4
3.75/5  rDev -6.5%

Photo of westcoastbeerlvr
4/5  rDev -0.2%

Photo of BEERchitect
4.29/5  rDev +7%
look: 3.5 | smell: 4.5 | taste: 4.5 | feel: 4 | overall: 4

It's pretty clear to me that this is what an Old Ale should be. A lot of complexity that derives from not-so-pretty starting elements but evolve to become rich in its maturity, varying in its age, and beautiful in its art.

The beer decants with a rusty mohogany, ruby haze, and garnet hues. Very, very low carbonation is a testiment to long term storage but does render the beer somewhat lifeless. Though carbonation, head formation, and retention are terse (to say the least), the beer shows classic brandy lacing on the glass, thus changing my mindset to expectations of port wines or liquors.

Extremely rich and bursting with flavors. The evidence of this is noticed in the heavy alcohol, fruit, and rubustness of the nose. Plumbs, figs, dates, raisons, bruised apples, grapes, cherries, prunes, and raspberries all come to life along with a rich rum-soaked fruitcake complexity, sweetness, and heartiness. Soy sauce and sherry notes give rise to the maturity of the beer and add even another layer to the unwaivering variety- virtually a new flavor with every sip. Throw in a hint of cocoa here, a dash of dustiness there, and a sprinkle of spicy cinnamon and nutmeg all about and we have a beery song that will rival the hokey pokey.

With all the flavor and smooth textures, it's easy to dismiss the low carbonation- the beer is just that good. Still, rich and lightly velvety with an unforgettable warmth and numbing to the mouth. Substantial bitterness seems part hops and part astringency from grain. Finishes with a long sweet linger of dehydrated fruits and sherry.

As wonderful and powerul as this beer is, the lack of carbonation leaves a pause mid way through that seems a bit void of vibrancy and life- maybe a bit of carbonation would help out here to help the beer making a transition from initial flavor to the long lasting aftertaste.

Thanks jlindros!

 1,874 characters

Photo of brentk56
3.38/5  rDev -15.7%
look: 2 | smell: 4 | taste: 4 | feel: 2 | overall: 2.5

Bottle #2269

Appearance: Pours a carbonation free burnt caramel that leaves no lace

Smell: A boozy blend of brown sugar, oak, bourbon, vanilla and a range of dark fruit

Taste: Opens with a boozy blend of bourbon soaked dried fruit (raisins and prunes), cocoa powder, bruised apple, cherries and vanilla that gets hotter by mid-palate; after the swallow, the bourbon elements add increasing complexity and linger into the finish

Mouthfeel: Thick, viscous and chewy, but flat

Drinkability: Maybe this will improve in a few decades (per the label) but right now the flatness and booziness makes it hard to enjoy; I don't think the lack of carbonation from San Diego breweries is a trend that has any legs

 706 characters

Photo of SocalKicks
4/5  rDev -0.2%

Photo of WillieThreebiers
4.5/5  rDev +12.2%

Photo of largadeer
3.5/5  rDev -12.7%

Photo of zestar
4/5  rDev -0.2%

Photo of mothman
4/5  rDev -0.2%
look: 4 | smell: 4 | taste: 4 | feel: 4 | overall: 4

Poured into snifter.

Pours very little head. Color is a slightly hazed caramel brown with a shade of ruby in it.

Aroma: Caramel and toffee stick out the most. It is very malt forward. It has oak and vanilla with bourbon, but nothing nearing the 100% bourbon version. Has a bit of dark fruits as well.

Taste: Very similar to the nose. It does have the bourbon, but it is so faint compared to the 100% version. The oak, however, stands out more. Caramel, toffee, vanilla, and a light amount of chocolate here. Very malty, again.

Mouthfeel: Smooth, warming, and creamy. Medium bodied with a medium amount of carbonation. Ends a tad dry.

Overall, a really nice old ale, but I still prefer the 100% -bal aged beers. It is good, no doubt about that. Great series.

 762 characters

Photo of Thorpe429
4.52/5  rDev +12.7%
look: 4 | smell: 4.5 | taste: 4.5 | feel: 5 | overall: 4.5

Reviewed from notes. Beer was about a year old when consumed. Thanks to bmanning for pulling this out.

Pours a nice caramel tan color with a slight head that dissipates somewhat quickly. Fairly impressive that it was there for as long as it was. The nose brings forward a bit of booze, dark sugars, caramel, nice fruits, and some toffee. The taste really integrates everything quite well--the booze is there but there is some nice sweetness and great fruit notes in addition to some toffee. Medium feel with really nice warmth. A very nice beer that is aging quite well.

 571 characters

Photo of jlindros
3.95/5  rDev -1.5%
look: 3.75 | smell: 3.75 | taste: 4 | feel: 3.75 | overall: 4.25

Been holding onto this for a looooong time, original batch from 2009, had all the other anniversaries so needed to crack this one. Shared with rudzud and kyle.

Original batch from 2009, bottle number 2006.

Pours no real head, super dark maroon brown color touch of mahogany light coming through.

Nose brings tons of sweet candy malt, toffee, nutty, candy syrup, lots of aged soft malts, little nougat, etc. Some oxidation is def there, not a ton but some, little candied raisin, mild oak, toasted oak no real bourbon or vanilla.

Taste hits with sweet candy, sharp sweet candy and caramel syrup, so sweet, syrupy mess and some warming booze, nutty toffee, etc. Little candied syrupy raisin syrup, little bitterness still. Mild oxidation, not much, and a little toasted oak also not a ton. Finish is sticky sweet, little more booze, more candied raisin and syrupy candy lingering.

Mouth is fuller bod, very syrupy and sweet, no real carb either, plenty of hot booze.

Overall better than expected, some oxidation but not a ton, bit boozy and very sweet.

 1,060 characters

Photo of ygtbsm94
3.5/5  rDev -12.7%

Photo of wethorseblanket
4.05/5  rDev +1%

Photo of billab914
4.06/5  rDev +1.2%
look: 3 | smell: 4.5 | taste: 4 | feel: 4 | overall: 4

Saved this one to open with my wife on our first anniversary Oct 1. It poured a murky brown color with noticeable sediment floating around. Almost no head and very still. Very thin tan ring around edges. Not bad for age and style, but not great either.

Rich dark fruits, oak and mild bourbon. Notes of plum and fig with a little cherry. It really comes together well and the flavors are very balanced with each other. Very nice for such bold flavors. Really great depth to it and surprisingly low on alcohol heat.

The sweet dark fruits are there throughout, but the cherry comes out even more in the taste. The oak comes out in the finish along with a hint of vanilla and bourbon. A little bit of bitterness is in the finish as well helping it from becoming cloyingly sweet. A little boozy in the finish, but very nice overall.

Mouthfeel is on the heavier side with very low carbonation. Carbonation is a little lower then ideal, but it is 4 years old.

Overall, a very good beer with a fantastic aroma. A little more barrel character in the taste could have pushed this one from really good to great though. I Wish I had one of the 100% versions to try. Very enjoyable beer to sip on for the occasion.

 1,209 characters

Photo of mendvicdog
4.5/5  rDev +12.2%

Photo of russpowell
4.31/5  rDev +7.5%
look: 3.5 | smell: 5 | taste: 4 | feel: 5 | overall: 4

Got this one from HopStoopid120, cheers Tony!

Bottle 3589 pours a semi-murky chestnut with a sliver of mocha colored head. Nice viscosity to this along with some shreds of head retention

S: Prunes, raisins, cherries & oaky booze, loads of port notes

T: Dark fruit, woodyness, cherries, a touch licorice schnapps & much dryness up front, some leafy hops & figs in the mix. Chocolate covered cherries, boozey figs & dryness dominate as this warms. Finishes with much oak, a little cherry, a bit more booze, & just a bit too much dryness to give 4.5, close

MF: Chewy as all get out, fairly still carbonation, pretty warming indeed

Drinks a touch slow, but spot-on for style & ABV. Maybe I should've waited, would love try this in about 4 months when the weather should be at least 35 degrees cooler; but curiosity & my sweet tooth was calling. Not bad, but I'd love to have a case or 2 of this & just see how it gets better. Not bad at all for its young age as it is...

 971 characters

Photo of ChainGangGuy
4.29/5  rDev +7%
look: 3.5 | smell: 4.5 | taste: 4.5 | feel: 4 | overall: 4

Appearance: Pours out a very dark brown body with a few large, migrating bubbles on top that quickly evaporate.

Smell: Rich, expressive aroma. A veritable deluge of sweet-scented notes, everything from caramel sauce to chocolate powder to those lil' charred crème brûlée tops. And such a wealth macerated fruitiness, too! Why, it's a real treat to be sniffing around this glass.

Taste: Sweet fusion of deep, dark caramel and vanilla beans with burnt, cauterized sugars and a good pinch of Dutch cocoa. The brew warms the palate nigh instantaneously and this easily makes way for the crashing waves of oaky, bourbonesque flavors to roll on in. And this one has quite a pronounced fruitiness (not that it was a surprise given the nature of the aroma) -- plenty of juicy figs, raisins, plums, and sweet cherries. Perhaps there's maybe even a small hint of smokiness in there as well. Certainly has an abundance of sweet fruitiness on the warming, heady, oak-laden finish.

Mouthfeel: Medium-bodied. Mild carbonation. Lightly sticky, almost chewy mouthfeel.

Drinkability: A slow, but oh-so satiating sipper. Plenty of oak character, but also heaps of bourbon barrel character as well even though it only represents 25% of the blend. Definitely give this one a try if you come across it!

 1,288 characters

first ← prev | 1-25 | 26-50 | 51-75  | nextlast
Papier from The Bruery
4.01 out of 5 based on 224 ratings.
  • About Us

    Founded in Boston in 1996, BeerAdvocate (BA) is your go-to resource for beer powered by an independent community of enthusiasts and professionals dedicated to supporting and promoting better beer.

    Learn More
  • Our Community

    Comprised of consumers and industry professionals, many of whom started as members of this site, our community is one of the oldest, largest, and most respected beer communities online.
  • Our Events

    Since 2003 we've hosted over 60 world-class beer festivals to bring awareness to independent brewers and educate attendees.
  • Our Magazine

    Support uncompromising beer advocacy and award-winning, independent journalism with a print subscription to BeerAdvocate magazine.