Red Poppy Ale | The Lost Abbey

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Red Poppy AleRed Poppy Ale
BEER INFO

Brewed by:
The Lost Abbey
California, United States
lostabbey.com

Style: Flanders Red Ale

Alcohol by volume (ABV): 5.50%

Availability: Rotating

Notes / Commercial Description:
Perhaps no country embraces the use of fruit in beers more so than Belgium. Numerous traditional as well as regional specialty ales are infused with every sort of fruit imaginable. In this way, the flavor of the fruit becomes especially prominent.

Red Poppy Ale is a veritable celebration of Sour Cherries in an explosion of aromas and tastes. Brewed from a brown ale base and aged in our oak barrels for over 6 months, this beer is not for the faint of heart.

The Golden Poppy is the state flower of California and the Red Poppy is found in Flanders Fields where our inspiration for this beer comes from.

Added by BeerBeing on 09-07-2007

BEER STATS
Reviews:
575
Ratings:
1,944
Avg:
4.24
pDev:
9.43%
 
 
Wants:
569
Gots:
594
For Trade:
40
User Reviews
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Reviews: 575 | Ratings: 1,944
Photo of MadScientist
4.55/5  rDev +7.3%
look: 4.25 | smell: 4.75 | taste: 4.5 | feel: 4.5 | overall: 4.5

A: A dark copper with a garnet hue. The head is tan, somewhat rocky and not long for this world which I blame on the high acidity.

S: Red currents, tart cherries and some leather. A light touch of barnyard funk.

T: Supper tart and fruit with a strong acidic tartness and fruit flavors of red current and tart cherries. The oak barrel comes through next mostly with vanilla but a touch of cinnamon. There is some malt rounding out the mild but the balance here is very tart with a dry finish. Lingering fruit flavors and tartness.

M: medium bodied with a strong carbonation.

O: A sour beer of arrival, one should love tart sours before approaching this one. Tart, fruity, vanilla, tart and oak with a touch of vinegar acidity.

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Photo of Marius
4.55/5  rDev +7.3%
look: 4.5 | smell: 4.5 | taste: 4.5 | feel: 4.5 | overall: 4.75

Bottle at home. Hazy dark ruby with a thin beige head. Complex notes of cherries, wild funk, mould, caramel, vanilla, oak barrel, minerals and subtle sulphur. Medium tartness, slight saltiness and a low amount of sweetness. With high carbonation and a smooth, oily texture, it makes for a refreshing drink.

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Photo of patre_tim
4.55/5  rDev +7.3%
look: 4.25 | smell: 4.25 | taste: 4.75 | feel: 4.75 | overall: 4.5

Deep brown with a ruby hue, no visible carbonation, and one finger of beige head.

Smells of vinegar, cherries, floral notes (perhaps the poppy seeds?) liquorice, dark and oaky, woody notes, funk and cellar.

Sour, lemon juice, balsamic vinegar, deep, dark, oaken woody notes, hints of floral and cherry, but predominately a sour, lemon juice, acidic quality.

So dry with no sweetness, wonderfully smooth, foamy and rich carbonation.

Got this on in in Santa Rosa in Sept, 2016. Drinking today, March 29th, 2017 in Chiang Mai, Thailand. Heard about this years ago on new brew thursday, and added it to my beer bucket list. Was glad to have found it. Really good, more acidic and comparatively complex to its Belgian inspirations, its solid, with a great label and historical connection.

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Photo of emerge077
4.54/5  rDev +7.1%
look: 4 | smell: 5 | taste: 4.5 | feel: 4 | overall: 4.5

2009 bottle: Thanks to Jason for this one...
Explosive cherry tartness, fruity, leathery, earthy. Plenty of oak on the back end that lends it balance and traditional flavors. Black cherry through and through. A mild balsamic vinegar note blends into the funky barrel aroma, a mixture of wet stone an sea foam fade in curious directions...spicy oak reminds me of Enigma. Mild tartness, nothing off the charts. Awesome stuff!

2008 bottle, 01-04-2009

Served at 50º into a Duchesse de Bourgogne glass.

Deep scarlet body in the light, thin layer of dirty foam that leaves a substantial ring at the edge. A skim returns with a swirl of the glass. Tiny trails of bubbles feed into the foam ring. Aroma is nice and funky, farmhouse cheese, lactic with some vanilla traces. Damp forest floor with wood, earth, wet leaves and wild mushrooms. Flavors of bitter and tangy cherry pits, leather, soil, with a dominant horseblanket brett taste as it warms. Dry and oaky finish. Medium body that is right on, and the brett character makes you slow down and sip.

Huge thanks to TheBlackMallard for this one!

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Photo of jbdpsu82
4.54/5  rDev +7.1%
look: 4 | smell: 4.25 | taste: 4.75 | feel: 4.75 | overall: 4.5

Pours a bubbly deep ruby-brown color with a finger width head. A fruity cherry aroma with a good amount of funk. taste is a beautiful biting tart flavor with a trace of the barrel aging mixed in. A carbonated mouthfeel and this beer rises above many others. Love it.

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Photo of VelvetExtract
4.53/5  rDev +6.8%
look: 5 | smell: 4.5 | taste: 4.5 | feel: 4.5 | overall: 4.5

A-Uncorking the bottle unleashes a loud pop. A foamy, murky-red head explodes with lively bubbles then quickly begins to pop away. A thinnish head floats atop the liquid leaving long drags of lace. The brew is exceptionally murky and red/brown in color.

S-Beautifully sour and funky aroma flows from both the bottle and my glass. The instant this was opened, the smell encompassed the area around me. Cherries, and oakiness. Great funky smell. A bit similar to wine too.

T-Quite sour! The funkiness in the nose is perfectly matched on the palate. Delicious fresh cherry taste is powerful and tasty. The cherry flavor is juicy and rich. Oaky and malty as well. Quite unique, quite complex, quite delicious.

M-Light relatively modest carbonation. The brew is smooth as is washes around the mouth. I enjoy how light the beer is.

O/D- Why oh why is this bottle so small and super expensive!? I wish I had much more of this. One tiny bottle kills the wallet but boy am I happy to have tried this one. The flavors in this beer are great. The lightness of the body keeps your tongue screaming for more. Try it if you have some extra cash hanging around.

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Photo of weatherdog
4.52/5  rDev +6.6%
look: 4.5 | smell: 5 | taste: 4.5 | feel: 4.5 | overall: 4

A big thanks to Tony for opening this up during a March tasting.

It pours a cloudy copper with deep red highlights at the edges. A bone colored head recedes quickly into a nice ring of bubbles around the perimeter

The nose of this beer is exactly what I dream of when I open up an example of my favorite style. It has a nice balance of acetic, cherry, oak, and sweet notes. The addition of actual cherries in this beer leave more cherry aroma than I've had in others but it is a welcome addition. The smell was so inviting I just kept smelling it for several minutes before I dived into the actual liquid.

The cherry is definitely present in the taste but it isn't overpowering. The tart and sour notes have are really well integrated with a fair amount of vinegar taste but not too much to label it over the top. My only gripe with the flavor is that the cherry flavors and the sourness mask a lot of the base beer and I wold like to have more of the brown ale show through.

The mouthfeel is on the lighter side and the present carbonation compliments the beer nicely. it is pretty dry which I really like and allows a mouth puckering beer to be drank without much palette fatigue.

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Photo of jeonseh
4.52/5  rDev +6.6%
look: 4 | smell: 4.5 | taste: 4.5 | feel: 5 | overall: 4.5

Poured into a GI Reserve goblet. Thanks to MiScusi for giving me the chance to try this one.

A - Could see a ton of carbonation trailing up in this one. Reminded me a lot of champagne as you could just see the carbonation floating up the whole time. Because of this, there was a constant stream of bubbles trailing up in it. Color of cherry wood with hues of gold and orange. It is a bit cloudy in the appearance as well. Didn't get much of a head on this in the goblet glass but there was a ton of carbonation on the side as well. Actually a very nice looking beer. As a note, I poured the rest of this into a flute and really still has no head or lacing at all.

S - Smell is of tart cherry that just wafts up. Also get a hint of sugary sweetness as well that cuts through the tart flavors. Also get a bit of an earthy and musty note that reminds me a bit of that distinctive Orval bretty smell.

T - Upfront the flavor is pure, tart cherry that just comes up. If this was the only flavor in the beer, it would not be that great but of course those masterminds at LA, had to just keep this packed with complexity. Later, I can just taste the funk that brings out the earthy, barny and, I always think, blue cheese like flavor. It is one of those things that is almost so nasty that it is good. At the end, get a slight hint of oak as well that just sneaks up. Really, I would not be surprised if someone told me this was just Orval's new beer brewed with cherries. The aftertaste just keep lingering around and leaves the Brett flavors hanging around. Also finishes a bit dry.

MF -like a fine champagne, it manages to have a ton of carbonation, yet it feels so velvety on the tongue. It has a great body for this type of beer which I feel should be a bit on the thinner side.

D - Overall, this is a great beer that I could see drinking with some cheese and crackers as an apetif. It is a really easy drinking beer and one that just calls you back. It has such a unique flavor that I want a chance to experience more and more of it. Each sip is different and I can't wait to open up that other bottle I received from my trade. Wished I lived somewhere close that kept this stocked as I would easily drink this a lot more esp in situations where I have champagne but the celebration does not necessarily call for champagne.

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Photo of jibbyvonjibb
4.52/5  rDev +6.6%
look: 4 | smell: 4.5 | taste: 4.5 | feel: 5 | overall: 4.5

bottle, 375mL
bought @ City Beer, San Francisco

A: cherry red color. small bubbles

S: Cherry. Vinegar. Toasted malts. Very caramelly. Biting acidity. Smells similar to consecration.

T: Lots of vanilla. Chocolate cherry tiramisu. Caramel. Biscuits. Clean finish. Tastes less acidic than smell implies.

M: Creamy, silky and smooth. Moose-like. An extremely comforting texture. Medium-high carbonation.

O: I enjoyed this one quite a bit. Great balance between caramel and fruit. And the texture is magical. If it wasn't so expensive, it would be one of my regulars.

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Photo of Justin_Neff
4.52/5  rDev +6.6%
look: 4.25 | smell: 4.75 | taste: 4.5 | feel: 4.25 | overall: 4.5

2012 Bottle poured into a CCB Snifter.

A: Pours a deep reddish body that almost appears brown. Light tan fizzy head with a faint red hue builds up and leaves little lacing, but settles and lasts throughout the duration of the drink. Bright red pieces of sediment float in the ring of head.

S: The smell is dominated by sour, tart cherries. Some funk and hints of oak and citrus. Very nice aroma.

T: Lots of tart cherries to follow the nose. Some citrus and even some white wine grapes. A good amount of oak to balance the sweetness and the funk.

M: Light-Medium body, High carbonation, dry, but a bit more creamy than I would've imagined from the appearance and the style.

O: Very nice balance of sweet, funk, and oak. I really enjoyed this one. I'm curious what a bit of age would do for it - I'll have to try and find a way to wrestle up another bottle.

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Photo of superspak
4.52/5  rDev +6.6%
look: 4 | smell: 4.5 | taste: 4.5 | feel: 5 | overall: 4.5

3300th review! 375 ml bottle into tulip glass, 2015 vintage bottling. Pours slightly hazy deep ruby red color with a 2 finger fairly dense light khaki head with good retention, that reduces to a nice cap that lingers. Nice spotty foamy lacing clings around the glass, with a moderate amount of streaming carbonation retaining the cap. Aromas of big sour black cherry, cranberry, green apple, lemon, red grape, cider vinegar, caramel, toasted oak, hay, straw, peppercorn, musty funk, herbal, and yeast earthiness. Incredible aromas with awesome complexity and balance of sour cherry, fruity/funky/spicy yeast, dark malt, and oak barrel notes; with great strength. Taste of big sour black cherry, cranberry, green apple, lemon, red grape, cider vinegar, caramel, toasted oak, hay, straw, peppercorn, musty funk, herbal, and yeast earthiness. Good amount of fruity/acidic tartness and yeast spiciness on the finish; with lingering notes of black cherry, cranberry, green apple, lemon, red grape, cider vinegar, caramel, toasted oak, hay, straw, peppercorn, musty funk, herbal, and yeast earthiness on the finish for a good bit. Incredible complexity and balance of sour cherry, fruity/funky/spicy yeast, dark malt, and oak barrel flavors; with an pretty much perfect malt/acidity balance and zero cloying flavors after the finish. High carbonation and medium bodied; with a very smooth, crisp, and moderately acidic mouthfeel that is incredible. Alcohol is very well hidden with zero warming present after the finish as expected of 5%. Overall this is a world class Flanders red ale style. All around fantastic complexity and balance of sour cherry, fruity/funky/spicy yeast, dark malt, and oak barrel flavors; and very smooth and crisp to drink with the balanced acidity. An insanely amazing offering.

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Photo of Bsquirrelbrewer
4.52/5  rDev +6.6%
look: 5 | smell: 4.25 | taste: 4.5 | feel: 5 | overall: 4.5

On draft at monks cafe.

Dark reddish brown color with a thin cream head that quickly dissipates to a ring.

Smell is bright and earthy with notes of cherries.

Taste is a balanced tart sweetness. Not at all cloying. Cherries are present and fresh, not overpowering. Taste fades to mild acidity, not a lengthy aftertaste.

Mouthfeel is clean and refreshing.

Overall one of my favorites from Lost Abbey!

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Photo of MakeMineADoubleJack
4.52/5  rDev +6.6%
look: 4.25 | smell: 4.75 | taste: 4.5 | feel: 4.25 | overall: 4.5

Poured from the bottle into a Teku glass.

A - Dark red body, like crimson black cherry flesh. Fizzy off-white head bubbles then dissipates. No lacing.

N - The finest attribute of this beer: cherry sweetness and cherry tartness, coupled with an oak body calling to mind a good red wine.

T - Cherry sweetness at the front, falling to a nice tart kick on the back end.

M - The carbonation fills the mouth like countless pillows of air.

O - Solid beer. Complex, tart. I think I've smelled it more than I've sipped it. The price point is high. I won't say I'm WOWed, but I am pretty darn impressed.

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Photo of Overlord
4.52/5  rDev +6.6%
look: 4 | smell: 4.5 | taste: 4.5 | feel: 5 | overall: 4.5

Had a chance to try a taster of this at the brewery, then chilled/cracked a bottle when I returned home.

Pours a hazy ruddy brown color. Maybe half an inch head. Decent looking beer.

Smells like sour cherries, some sort of plum/fig/raisin background, and some oakiness. Taste is quite tart, with a delicious hint of sour cherry pulp (it's not a strong cherry flavor, which was surprising given the smell and color) layered over some serious wood/oak tones.

There's some malt sweetness in here, and maybe a hint of lighter fruits ... maybe some plums or figs. The overriding flavor, though is a semi-acidic soury base over oak. Delicious, very drinkable. The mouthfeel is a fascinating dry, champagne-esque finish that really makes the flavors in this pop. Perfect carbonation. One of the most enjoyable "mouthfeelable" beers I can recall. I love the dryness.

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Photo of SinjaminBentek
4.52/5  rDev +6.6%
look: 4.75 | smell: 4.5 | taste: 4.5 | feel: 4.5 | overall: 4.5

12oz bottle.

Appearance - Dark brown hue.

Smell - Light tart, light funk.

Taste - Very tart with slight sweetness from the cherries. Tasty!

Mouthfeel - Light. High level of carbonation. High attenuation.

Overall - Nice sour

Grade (A-)

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Photo of Crosling
4.52/5  rDev +6.6%
look: 4 | smell: 4.5 | taste: 4.5 | feel: 5 | overall: 4.5

Light bronze in color with a full, silky head of foam. Nose is nearly perfect, with hints of sour cherries, Pinot Noir, oak & funk. Flavor is outstanding, perfectly balanced and complex. Hints of lightly toasted oak, vanilla, sour cherries and Pinot Noir. Really stunningly good.

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Photo of Rochefort10nh
4.52/5  rDev +6.6%
look: 4 | smell: 4.5 | taste: 4.5 | feel: 4 | overall: 5

A great thank you goes out to jtrockchalk who included this want as an extra in a recent trade!

This one is russet-brown with very little head after a vigorous pour. It smells of a high quality balsalmic vinegar; wood; sour, tart monticello cherries with a background note of warm caramel. This is very nice!

The taste mirrors the smell with a very slight lactic tang and citrus zest presence. I am digging this! Not quite as sour as say Rodenbach Grand Cru or cirrca 2005 Panil Barriquée, but not nearly as sweet as Rodenbach Alexander or the Duchesse.

Mouthfeel is right for the style - vinous and lightly carbonated.

Drinkability is excellent as I was through the bottle way to quickly for my liking.

If it weren't so difficult to obtain, I could see myself making this a staple.

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Photo of pmlondrigan
4.52/5  rDev +6.6%
look: 4 | smell: 4.5 | taste: 4.5 | feel: 5 | overall: 4.5

2009 bottle popped and poured into my Allagash chalice. White half finger head on top an auburn beer. Splotches of lacing hang around and slide down my chalice. Intense sour cherry aroma. Acidic balsamic vinegar nose floating above brown sugar notes. Barrel and oak make there presence known by way of musty basement funk but play second fiddle to the higher sour notes. Sour black cherries are big on the palate and marry well with oak barrel. Red Poppy boarders on lip puckering (nice) and oh so dry. This beer is quenching in it's initial splash of flavor and than drying of the palate. It sits pretty, not thin just right.
The more I drink Flanders Oud Bruns the more I love them and this is a hell of an example, my second favorite lost abbey beer to date.

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Photo of tut2528
4.51/5  rDev +6.4%
look: 4.25 | smell: 4.5 | taste: 4.5 | feel: 4.75 | overall: 4.5

big thanks to matttYCE for this one!

2012 Vintage

A: pours a deep cola brown, that created highly carbonated "fizzy" head that quickly dissipated.

S: big sourness, tart cherries and oak right up front and its balance is awesome. some subtle vinegar presence is also noticeable. i also pick up on a caramel and sugary sweetness

T: a massive blast of tart cherries crushes the palate (awesome), big wine like characters from the oak barrel, high acidity, slight barnyard funk, caramel and a dry finish.

M: on the lighter side of medium bodied, the taste buds freak out with each sip causing intense salivation. it leaves a very vinous feel on the palate. high carbonation and dry.

O: Nice flavor profile, great balance, its one hell of a brew, and this will be one that I will most likely seek out int he future. Only wish is that it was in a larger format, because I'm left wanting a second glass

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Photo of Phyl21ca
4.5/5  rDev +6.1%
look: 4.5 | smell: 4.5 | taste: 4.5 | feel: 4.5 | overall: 4.5

Bottle courtesy of Kegbear: Poured a deep clear reddish color ale with a small foamy head with minimal retention and no lacing. Aroma of oak and sour cherries are heavily dominating. Taste is also a very nice mix between some deep oak notes with some cherry flavor also discernable. Very complex taste and some what similar to Rodenbach Grand Cru. I thought cherries would have been more prominent but they were somewhat loss in the mix.

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Photo of scottoale
4.5/5  rDev +6.1%
look: 4.5 | smell: 4.5 | taste: 4.5 | feel: 4.5 | overall: 4.5

375ml. cork-finished brown bottle with a single wrap around label.

This was the first brew released for the Patron Sinners club, and a tasty one at that.

Poured into a tulip, a medium-dark hazelnut brown with a small beige head with some lavender tint to it. The head remains small...the visible carbonation is near perfect.

Sweet malt and cherries upfront with a tart, yeasty brett following right behind. Smells really yummy.

Initially goes in sweet with notes of cherries and syrupy malt, then quickly becomes tart and pleasantly sour to the finish. A nice earthy malt pulls through in the linqering aftertaste.

Mild ABV, medium body and just the right carbonation for this ale are really making me wish I had another, on this hot, sunny San Diego day.

This ale paired nicely with some spicy, cheesy pan fried potatoes that my girlfriend made.

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Photo of largadeer
4.5/5  rDev +6.1%
look: 4.5 | smell: 4.5 | taste: 4.5 | feel: 4.5 | overall: 4.5

2008 bottle.

Appearance - Ruddy brown, quite hazy and distinctly unfiltered. The head retained remarkably well in an oversized wine glass. This beer should be decanted carefully; the bottle has a ton of sediment at the bottom.

Smell - Wonderfully musty and oaky. Pronounced vanilla with mild barnyard funk and sourness. Cherries are present but not as dominating as they are on the tongue.

Taste - Sour, tangy cherries make up the backbone, while oak provides depth and balance. Acidity is fairly low despite the tart flavor. Vanilla appears more and more as the beer warms, blending harmoniously with the sour cherries. The finish is dry and long, revealing more of the young oaky flavor.

Mouthfeel - Fairly light-bodied and crisp on the tongue; slighty drying to the palate. Certainly not quaffable despite the light body; small sips provide a ton of flavor.

Overall - The 08 and 09 batches are outstanding. A Flemish style sour without all the acetic acid, and a great balance between oak and fruit. Later batches are solid but not as exceptional.

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Photo of Celtics17
4.5/5  rDev +6.1%
look: 4.25 | smell: 4.25 | taste: 4.75 | feel: 4.25 | overall: 4.5

Very tart! Cherries the big player in this sour. A very slight caramel taste. A real fruit flavored sour, and beer. One of the best sours. Full in body. I would say this is right there with New Belgium's La Folie. Both a brown ale sour. Very comparable.

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Photo of GClarkage
4.5/5  rDev +6.1%
look: 4.5 | smell: 4.5 | taste: 4.5 | feel: 4.5 | overall: 4.5

11/20/08- Generously shared by BA member Talisker.

Presentation- 375ml bottle with no freshness info located on the bottle. Poured into my Duvel tulip.

Appearance- Deep mahagoney in color. Soft 1/4 inch bubbly white head. Leaves light spotted lace.

Smell- Pretty straight forward here. Fairly sour notes with lots of tart cherries and a good amount of oak.

Taste- Seems a bit thicker than a 5% beer would be. Tons of semi-tart cherry goodness with a light vinegar note (good vinegar). Very oaky with a nice woody barrel flavor.

Mouthfeel- Quite dry, quenching with a medium carbonation level. Crisp and sharp.

Drinkability- Right up there with the best Oud Bruins I have had. Not too tart and loads of cherry flavor. Wish I had some cheese to go with it.

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Photo of Viggo
4.5/5  rDev +6.1%
look: 4.5 | smell: 4.5 | taste: 4.5 | feel: 4.5 | overall: 4.5

Big thanks to oakbluff for hooking me up with this rare brew!

Pours a cloudy chunky orange/red, kind of like grapefruit juice, thick white head, some solid lace spots, settles to a nice layer and thick ring. Smell is sour and tart, very acidic, cherries, bread, lots of fruit, quite intense, oak, nice. Taste is similar, very oaky, some caramel, vanilla, cherries, tart fruit, acidic, lemons, vanilla, acidic fruit in the finish, very nice. Mouthfeel is light bodied with low carbonation, very smooth and easy to drink. Fantastic sour beer, no rough edges, very nice. Thanks Scott!

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Red Poppy Ale from The Lost Abbey
4.24 out of 5 based on 1,944 ratings.
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