Vitis Series: Pinotlambicus | The Bruery

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Vitis Series: PinotlambicusVitis Series: Pinotlambicus

Brewed by:
The Bruery
California, United States

Style: American Wild Ale

Alcohol by volume (ABV): 8.40%

Availability: Limited (brewed once)

Notes / Commercial Description:
A dry and vinous beer with hints of smokiness and a touch of oak. First running press of Pinot Noir grapes from Santa Barbara County were added to a year old blonde sour ale (called by many names around here, one you may be familiar with is Cuvee Jeune) and fermented together in stainless. The grape beer was then transferred to wine barrels and aged for 10 months. The beer is pleasantly tart, complex and refreshing; it can easily substitute a sparkling wine for any celebration.

Added by Overlord on 11-08-2010

This beer is retired; no longer brewed.

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Reviews: 57 | Ratings: 129
Photo of mikesgroove
4.47/5  rDev +10.9%
look: 4 | smell: 4.5 | taste: 4.5 | feel: 4.5 | overall: 4.5

bright, golden, amber color right out of the gate. A very nice, and slightly hazy looking consistency to it, I did notice copious amounts of bubbles coming up through it, throughout the session.

The aroma was very nice and tart. Huge aromas of Brett coming off of this immediately, turning the whole experience over to the funk that was in the glass, very nice to see. lots of grapes and geapeskins with a nice sour and fruit like finish that was draped in dry oak like taste. deep, resonant sour taste, seems to be a little more tame that what I was expecting, nice tones of wood raveled in throughout as well. Really well blended, the aging is really coming into play here now. Very dry finish with the long lingering taste of sour Brett that as time fades,

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Photo of slayer3604
4.47/5  rDev +10.9%
look: 4 | smell: 4.5 | taste: 4.5 | feel: 4.5 | overall: 4.5

^^^ AGAIN you review first. GRrrr....

A- Gold, haze and some very very sparse head. Actually found solid chunks of (I guess grapes????) floaties/sinkies in the bottle and some that came into the glass. I like that. I like that a lot.

S- Has a nice tart but very subtle nose, with bright fruit, sweet typical Bruery malt background and a little bit of airy funkiness here and there.

T- The equivilant of a nice cask ale in carbonation, but it leaves room for the nice grapey middleground that is promised in the name. This is where Bruery trumps 10/10/10 in their attempt to make a grape beer. Has a balanced sourness, that isn't ambient but rather blends into the rest of the beer. Lots of bright fresh and over ripe fruit and some sweetness in the finish.

M- Even though its not carbonated as much as a "regular" beer, it has a creamy, firm and lasting mouthfeel. Very nice.

D- For 8.4% its very smooth and a damn good beer to boot.

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Photo of Gobzilla
4.44/5  rDev +10.2%
look: 4 | smell: 5 | taste: 4.5 | feel: 4 | overall: 4

A: poured a pale orange in color with pale yellow highlights and had a very bubbly thin head leaving some good lacing sticking to the glass.

S: pineapple, pinot grapes, tangerine, and citrus fruit aromas stand out on the nose alongside tart character but had nice bretty funky oak barrel notes; very appealing nose.

T: the tart qualtites are nice upfront on the palate with citrus, oaky, bretty funky accents and had a touch of vanilla. After a few sips the tangerine, pinot grapes and pineapple flavors were coming through quite nice.

M: the brew was medium in body with a fair amount of carbonation which had a citrusy, fruity, vinous, oaky, funky, and tart finish.

D: the beer was more tasty than people said it would, goes to show you have to taste it for yourself. Everybody does have a different palate and taste buds. I thought it drank great.

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Photo of Sideswipe
4.42/5  rDev +9.7%
look: 4 | smell: 4.5 | taste: 4.5 | feel: 4 | overall: 4.5

At the Bruery barrel tasting

Clear golden color wih minimal head. No lacing. Sour grapes and a bit of oak in the nose. Tart grapes, mild funk and wood flavors dominate. Great wine characteristics. There's a nice lingering tartness in the finish. Medium body with very little carbonation. Very tasty. I really like the super tart, winey qualities. Wish they'd bottle this again. Recommended.

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Photo of AleWatcher
4.4/5  rDev +9.2%
look: 4 | smell: 4 | taste: 4.5 | feel: 4 | overall: 5

So this was a huge of mine after sampling it at a tasting shortly after the beer was released... I really wanted to give it a review because I remember loving this beer the first time around...
Anyway, oreo or drewba brought this out at a tasting so I made sure to pull my phone out!

Reviewed from notes dictated into voice notes on my iphone.

My pour was towards the end of the bottle, so I got a little murky cloudiness in my glass. Looking at the other pours (and being offered whiffs and tastes as well) they are nice and clear and remind me of a golden ale. Some small bubbles create a thin white collar around the glass. Speaking of thin, the legs on this are atrophied-- virtually nonexistent.

The nose is bright fresh citrus fruit with acidic white grape like a German Reisling. I really like this beer. It tastes great-- there's enough going on to keep every sip interesting, but nothing stands out as being overly powerful. It is well-balanced and all the flavors blend together like a CSN+Y harmony.

The body itself is a lot like a white wine: low carbonation, very acidic, good sourness, and a tartness that makes me pull my cheeks in a bit. I like it a lot.

Overall-- very very very fucking tasting beer. I'm still looking to trade for a few of these!

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Photo of jrallen34
4.37/5  rDev +8.4%
look: 3.5 | smell: 4 | taste: 4.5 | feel: 5 | overall: 4.5

Very interesting color of medium gold in the middle, much lighter on the sides, with a weird opalesque shimmer to it. Light carbonation...Successful complex aroma of apples, grapes, wine, and oak with little tartness...The taste is a nice surprise, complex still with an great feel for an all around great drinking experience. Dry white wine, oak, grape skins, sour. The feel is super tannic and sticks to your mouth. Easy to drink.

A great new Bruery beer, who knew they had it in them???

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Photo of Overlord
4.32/5  rDev +7.2%
look: 4 | smell: 4.5 | taste: 4.5 | feel: 4 | overall: 4

Pours a murky golden orange. Some light white bubbling, and a thin white crust of large volume-d bubbles, but no real head. I was hoping for some champagne streams, but alas, twas a fairly flat brew.

Smells faintly of vinous notes, with some .... cherry-ish grape ... currents as well. Lot of indiscriminate berry/oak in the nose.

Taste is, oddly enough, perhaps more muted than the aroma. Big pleasant vinegar/vinous/oak base (it's gentler than it sounds ... kind of interesting, actually) and some hints of cherry and grapeskins. Somewhat light for a sour, actually, despite the flat mouthfeel. The rarity does it a disservice, as it's actually a bit more accessible than some of the more bracing offerings out there.

If there's a downside, needs more carbonation.
**even a few extra weeks in the bottle really built up some carbonation.

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Photo of jmarsh123
4.27/5  rDev +6%
look: 3.5 | smell: 4 | taste: 4.5 | feel: 4 | overall: 4.5

Pours bright orange with a very small patchy head fading immediately. Lots of bubbles on the side of the glass. Looks a bit thin.

Very wine like aromas. Tart grape skin, lemon and oak with some subtle spice.

Again flavor is very vinous. Oak adds a certain dryness, but I would still relate this as more of a Pinot Grigio relative than something on the dryer side. Tart grape, lemon and apple. A little white pepper and a musty funk.

Despite the look has a decently thick body with high carbonation.

Very strong beer. I've had a few better, but this is a good wine/beer hybrid that still has some really good flavors. I'd be happy if this were made again.

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

Poured into a Bruery tulip. Beer is yellow with a mild haze and a nice thin white ehad with low retention, falling away to nothing quickly. No lacing, moderate to high carbonation.

Aroma is vinous and oaky with that distinct Bruery sour aroma. I like it.

Beer is light in body, tart and oaky in the backend and sweet with a nice finish. Lactic with a mildly brighter acid on the palate gives the dry finish a nice late tartness. The grapes are really nice in there. I'd have this again for sure.

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Photo of jlenik
4.24/5  rDev +5.2%
look: 5 | smell: 3.5 | taste: 4.5 | feel: 4 | overall: 4.5

a: pours a mostly golden color with no head retention.

s: smells like a sweet white wine. kinda of grainy and a little tart.

t: apricot notes come through along with a sweet grape taste. definitely tart but drinkable at the same time.

m: the sweetness makes this feel a little thick but the tartness and dryness mostly cuts through it.

o: nice beer. If I didn't know any better I would guess this was an Allagash beer.

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Photo of Huhzubendah
4.24/5  rDev +5.2%
look: 3.5 | smell: 4.5 | taste: 4.5 | feel: 3.5 | overall: 4

Bottle shared by Darrell. Thanks man!

The beer is a hazy light orange color. The head is minimal and dissipates immediately, leaving no trace of its prior existence.

The aroma is delectable, with gueuze funk, grapes. It smells exactly like what I hoped for and expected.

The beer is delicious. Not amazingly tart, but certainly more tart than sweet. Grapes shine through brilliantly. A subtle grape juice sweetness is present, making this brew quite quaffable.

The finish brings a hint of vinegar and an ever so slightly acetic bite.
Carbonation is light and the body is relatively thin.

Overall, a very tasty brew. I would definitely have this again.

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Photo of ThePorterSorter
4.24/5  rDev +5.2%
look: 4 | smell: 4.25 | taste: 4.25 | feel: 4.25 | overall: 4.25

Thanks merc
The beer pours a cloudy burnt orange with no head. The nose is similar to a cantillon, but less intensely sour. There is a punch of sweetness upfront with a bit of acetone. The taste is quite modest with a touch of grape, tart sourness with a semi-dry finish. Honestly, this beer is tasty, but I'd like to do a side-by-side with a bottle of cantillon to see which I like better.

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Photo of JohnGalt1
4.22/5  rDev +4.7%
look: 3.25 | smell: 4.25 | taste: 4.5 | feel: 4 | overall: 4

Probably my favorite brew from tonight's tasting...

Poured a fairly clear light orange brew... no real head or lacing....

The nose buggy/big brett and still pretty fruity.

The flavor is interesting for days.... tannic and fruity... brett/mild lactic notes... woody/definite winey presence... a heavier "Cuvee de Castleton" is my big descriptor..

The carbonation is light... body is fine for something this heavy...


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

Poured from a 750ml bottle into a White Birch flute. Extra special thanks to errantnight for hooking me up with this from our latest volley!

A: Decent "pfffft" sound when the cap was pried off. Pours a rather still and lifeless looking apricot/peach nectar color. Nice haze. A weak bubbly head quickly pops up and just as quickly dies off leaving no collar, no skim, and no lace. Second pour was darker and with some suspended sediment.

S: At first, I was greeted with a bit of vinegar before it turned decidedly fruity and oaky. Dry oaky tannins with sour grapes, tart green apple, and lemon. As it came up to temp, I picked up tart bing cherry, then sweet black cherry, and then a bit of slightly sweet malt. With my second pour, I swirled in all the sediment and was rewarded with aromas of fresh strawberry and blueberry.

T: Very much like the smell with even more emphasis on the oak and tart fruit flavors. Vinegar in the finish gradually leads to some toasted malt. After pouring in the sediment with my second glass I picked up the aforementioned strawberry and blueberry as well as some black currants.

M: Relatively smooth with some very nice oaky astringency. The acidity is there but never too in your face. Rather it's balanced by the fruit/berry/malt sweetness and dry oak.

D: This was a very drinkable AWA that covered the bases. Sour, dry, and sweet. Very nice.

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Photo of Gueuzedude
4.18/5  rDev +3.7%
look: 4.5 | smell: 4 | taste: 4 | feel: 4.5 | overall: 4.5

Sampled at Redlight Redlight; January 2011
A vigorous pour scares up a frothy, quickly disappearing, white head that sits on top of a hazed, orange-straw color body. The aroma has a nice funkiness to it, an earthy character as well as a fair amount of oak aromatics to it. There is a lactic tartness to this beer that accentuates an aroma of green apple (which gets bigger as the beer warms up) and a medicinal-phenolic note. This is quite a bit more fruity than I would have guessed; is it the pinot influence? I am not sure as the fruitiness seems a bit more generic, but it is certainly there.

The beer has a lactic slickness / texture and tartness to it up front; this continues through to the long finish, but there is also a berry fruit character and tannic oak structure that also lingers in the finish. The oak flavors are quite prominent, but still pretty well integrated with the other flavors found in this beer. The pinot influence is actually quite prominent too; this is quite fruity, but in a controlled, balanced way. A base grain character contributes notes of grassy malt, and pale malt character that add to the balanced, all-around effect of the entire beer. It is really quite interesting how fruity this beer is, at times it is quite huge, but always remains quite well integrated.

This is quite a nice beer, the individual components are incredible, but the integration and balance that the beer as a whole achieves is just very well done. This beer achieves a balance, integration and finesse that is just quite amazing. Despite this it almost doesn’t seem characterful enough (at least when you look at notes individually). I could definitely see it needing a little something to push it into greatness; more tartness, or funkiness would likely go a long way towards this).

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Photo of UCLABrewN84
4.15/5  rDev +3%
look: 3 | smell: 4.25 | taste: 4.25 | feel: 4 | overall: 4.25

Thanks to GRG1313 for sharing this one at his tasting.

Pours a murky orange with a foamy bone colored head that settles fades to nothing. No lacing on the drink down. Smell is sour and tart with some grape, wine, and acidic aromas. Taste is much the same with a wine-like flavor on the finish. There is a medium amount of acidity on the palate with each sip. This beer has a good level of carbonation with a crisp mouthfeel. Overall, this is a very good beer with some nice sour and fruity aromas and flavors.

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Photo of thagr81us
4.14/5  rDev +2.7%
look: 3 | smell: 4 | taste: 4.5 | feel: 4 | overall: 4

Had this one during the 'We Want The Funk!' tasting that was graciously hosted by beermeX2! Big thanks goes out to beermeX2 for sharing this one with the group! Served from bottle into a Mikkeller flute. Poured yellow-orange with a very minimal off-white head. There was no lacing evident throughout the glass. The aroma was comprised of sweet malt, fruit, sour, and wood. The flavor was of sweet malt, white grapes, sour, tart, and wood. It had a light feel on the palate with mild carbonation. Overall this was a pretty good brew. The aroma on this was a little bit of a letdown if I'm honest, but still pretty good. The flavor made up for this fact adding in the tart aspect to bump this one up another notch. Very glad I got the chance to try this one. I would suggest this one to others as well.

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Photo of AgentZero
4.12/5  rDev +2.2%
look: 3.5 | smell: 4 | taste: 4.5 | feel: 3.5 | overall: 4

A - Orange colored beer that pours fairly opaque. Small head on it, that barely stuck around to be noticed.

S - Nice and tart with a bit of oak and citrus. Slightly bretty, nice grape presence that does remind me of a pinot noir.

T - Surprisingly good, one of the better Bruery beers I've had to date. Appropriate tart notes with some brett, good grape taste that gets sour. Tastes a little juicy.

M - Juicy like mouthfeel that ends a little bit watery. Kind of reminds me of Yellow Bus in that sense. Slightly sugary, medium bodied.

D - Very good sour from the Bruery that I enjoyed having and would have again. Surpring amount of ABV is not detected upon consumption.

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Photo of sweemzander
4.12/5  rDev +2.2%
look: 3.5 | smell: 4 | taste: 4 | feel: 4.5 | overall: 4.5

750mL bottle poured into a stemmed glass. Got this awhile in a trade and I cannot remember from whom; Thank you whoever it was!

(A)- Pours an orange color. Produced some white bubbles and froth. Bits of lacing.

(S)- A nice bone dry acidic earthiness. Bits of white grape and plenty of oak; some funk in the wood.

(T)- Very similar to the smell. Dry, but with a zesty blush-like grape component. Pinot Noir? Tastes more like a white grape to me. Nice and sour/acidic. Crisp. Far less funk than the smell; rather clean on the finish actually.

(M)- A nice carbonation level. A nice balance too. Definitely a cleaner take, yet has a vibrant feel to it at the same time.

(D)- I like this one. Nicely sour and crisp. A great thirst quencher on this hot day. Nice job.

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Photo of MasterSki
4.12/5  rDev +2.2%
look: 3.5 | smell: 4 | taste: 4 | feel: 4.5 | overall: 4.5

Thanks to Jason for sharing this one. Served in a Sam Adams perfect pint glass.

A - Pours with a finger of white foam that sizzles to a thin ring, leaving behind a few spots on top and no lace. Murky peach juice body - slightly milky.

S - Brett tropical fruit notes, some sour grape notes, some under ripe stone fruits. It's quite nice, and as it warms some more horse and barnyard comes out.

T - The taste is significantly more acetic and sour, with notes of lactic sourness as well. Just lots of sour grapes - the name of the beer is quite appropriate. There might be some other sour fruits in there too.

M - Very dry, somewhat zesty carbonation, medium body. Lots of residual cottonmouth and sour candy sensations.

D - Quite nice, and very drinkable. It's very acetic, but I gladly refilled my glass. It's not on par with the rest of California sours, but it's a step in the right direction, and a hell of a lot better than the awful Barrel Fermented Autumn Maple.

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Photo of billshmeinke
4.12/5  rDev +2.2%
look: 3.5 | smell: 4 | taste: 4.5 | feel: 3.5 | overall: 4

Poured into a Bruery tulip.

No head really. Just a few bubbles then nothing. The color is very pretty though, a sort of burnt glowing orange.

Very nice nose. Plenty of horse blanket and barnyard nose. Lemon like acidity. This one is quite funky/barnyard like with plenty of tartness to boot.

Lemony acidity and tartness up front. Then horse blanket, straw, a touch of balsamic, and some oaky tannins. The finish balances the tartness, funk, and tannins with some delicately sweet and somewhat vinous grape notes. Lingering lactic tart notes.

Light body, and quite tart (not particularly over the top tartness though). Carbonation is quite low, but not to a point that I find it distracting.

The alcohol is well hidden and it is a very tasty and enjoyable brew. My only complaint is the carbonation level detracted from the look and mouthfeel.

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Photo of HuskyinPDX
4.11/5  rDev +2%
look: 3.75 | smell: 4 | taste: 4.25 | feel: 3.75 | overall: 4.25

Bottle opened on 10.4.13

A - Pours a clear light orange with a fizzy off-white head that is gone instantly.

S - Lots of pinot and wine barrel.

T - Tart pinot, oaky barrel, dry finish.

D - Lower carbonation with a light body.

O - Heavy on the pinot and oak barrel. More Grape then malt.

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Photo of jsanford
4.09/5  rDev +1.5%
look: 3 | smell: 4 | taste: 4.5 | feel: 3.5 | overall: 4

Pours a clear light amber with a very slight have that dissipates to a thin ring. Nice aromas of white wine grapes, lemon juice, hay, and a touch of white vinegar. Very signature of the Bruery's sours. Great tart wine flavors, but not as sour as I'd expected from the nose. Grape skin flavors impart a slight woody bitterness, along with more lemon juice and citric acid. Mouthfeel is light and slick, with a medium-thin body, low carbonation, and a dry, slightly astringent finish. Really solid sour from the Bruery, and a great melding of beer and wine.

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Photo of hooliganlife
4.07/5  rDev +1%
look: 4 | smell: 4.5 | taste: 4 | feel: 3.5 | overall: 4

this was released in 2010

pours a nice hazy dark golden orange. little to no head. bottle let out some gas but the beer looks rather still.

smells like gueuze, no really. lots of white grape and sour apple. a hint of vinegar. very subtle oak.

nice and tart through out. most of the flavor is from the grapes and seeing that pinot noir grapes were added to this, makes sense. very wine like. a bit of cheese and vinegar.

actually has a mild carbonation bite to it. a hint of dryness. puckering.

this was enjoyable and different. so much grape in this with a great sour base.

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Photo of cvm4
4.06/5  rDev +0.7%
look: 4 | smell: 4.25 | taste: 4 | feel: 4 | overall: 4

So this is a 5+ year old beer that hasn't been reviewed in 2.5 years.

L - Pours a semi-opaque golden copper body with a fizzy half finger head that never sets up, it dissipated pretty much as the pour ended.

S - Big pinot noir nose with sour/tart cutting through it along with oak and mild vinegar. Really a nice nose here.

T - Juicy pinot noir grapes front and center. It's not as sour as the smell was leading me on to believe. Medium tartness, some funk/earth and oak.

F - Light bodied, light carbonation and a semi-dry finish.

O - The grapes dominate here. To me, a properly stored bottle should be holding up, but I have no clue how this was fresh.

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Vitis Series: Pinotlambicus from The Bruery
4.03 out of 5 based on 129 ratings.
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