Carnevale | The Lost Abbey

very good
320 Reviews
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Brewed by:
The Lost Abbey
California, United States

Style: Saison / Farmhouse Ale

Alcohol by volume (ABV): 6.50%

Availability: Winter

Notes / Commercial Description:
Brewed in celebration of Lent and Easter season, Carnevale is light bodied Saison, using Brettanomyces along with Amarillo and Simcoe hops to generate flavor and depth. Carnevale’s complexity grows with time. The citrus notes tend to wane and the wild yeast rears its wonderfully tasting head.

2008 (first release) did not have brettanomyces.

Added by seaoflament on 02-12-2008

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Reviews: 320 | Ratings: 804
Photo of MiScusi
4.85/5  rDev +22.2%
look: 4.5 | smell: 4.5 | taste: 5 | feel: 5 | overall: 5

Pours a sparkling clear golden. Lots of bubbles seen rising in this but surprising the mouthfeel isn't overcarbonated, in fact it's VERY smooth. The smell initially makes you go "Woh!" It's very sweaty, musty. However the taste isn't anything like that. Just slightly earthy, very light, and a bit fruity, finishing dry. So easy to drink. Just what was needed on a hot night in southern California like tonight. I even preferred this to the Saison Dupont I had right after.

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Photo of Duhast500
4.82/5  rDev +21.4%
look: 4.5 | smell: 5 | taste: 5 | feel: 4.5 | overall: 4.5

Poured froma 220z. bottle into a over sized wine glass.

The color is a clear gold with about two fingers of foamy white head and some nice lacing.

The smell is pretty funky. Some green bean or vegtable flavor in the nose. It has a yeast flavor that mixes with some slight fruit flavor as it sits and breaths.

The taste is sweet at first with a smooth with some nice dry fruit flavor. I have a white grape flavor that is followed by a slight green apple flavor. There is a slight rasin flavor as well at the end.

The feel is a pretty easy drinking feel to this beer and is slightly acidy but very pleasing. The first Lost Abbey beer I have had and I am very happy with this experience.

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Photo of FitnessForBeer
4.65/5  rDev +17.1%
look: 4.5 | smell: 4.5 | taste: 5 | feel: 4 | overall: 4.5

Bomber served in a snifter glass

A: perfect straw colored beer, cloudy. large head, lots of carbonation coming from the bottom
S: barnyard funk, light hop. lighter malty bready smell. i think pilsner malts, not positive. Lots going on in it.
T: I think this tastes exactly how a saison should taste. Sweet, funky, fruity, spicey. Theres just sooo much going on and it blends so well.
M: Good, very refreshing, high carbonation like all bottled conditioned saisons
O: Love this saison, one of my favorites for the reason it is strictly just a simply brewed saison nothing extra. Everything that comes through in the flavor and smell is from the yeast doing its marvelous job.

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Photo of francisweizen
4.65/5  rDev +17.1%
look: 4.5 | smell: 4.5 | taste: 4.5 | feel: 5 | overall: 5

What a phenomenal, somewhat dry, funked up saison. Dark golden on the pour very yeasty and hazy, beautiful looking big cap of white foam that billows and boils on the chalice. Aromas of spicy yeast and hop notes, very herbal and fresh with nice green hop notes and a very zesty blend of spice and light fruit. Maybe a tad bit of funk if you reach in the back, but maybe not?

Taste is earthy and spirited with a great hop blend mixed with fresh baked bread and a wonderful spiciness. Hops come again in the dry spritzy finish, damn this shit is refreshing! A mild barnyard funk in the background, no brett in this one, but somehow there is a slight funk, not sure of Tommes secret on this but it is the most controlled funk I Have come across in a saison before. Mouthfeel is yeasty, dry, spritzy, perfect summer quaffer. Drinkability is perfection, a phenomenal warm weather beer. Probably the best Saison I have had in years. It's like a lighter more refreshing Avec! Fantastic job

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Photo of ahalloin
4.62/5  rDev +16.4%
look: 4 | smell: 4.5 | taste: 5 | feel: 4 | overall: 4.5

I received this bottle in Feb. 2008 as part of the Patron Saints Club, so this is the older version of Carnevale, prior to them adding Brettanomyces to the recipe.

Poured into my Unibroue tulip glass a golden straw colored hazy fluid with bubbles filtering to the top constantly. A generous rocky white head formed of two fingers width, but then receded to lacing at the edges and a thing ring atop the beer.

The smell is sweet fruity but with an earthy background, with a strong spice presence, probably coriander and some orange peel...classic additions to any Saison! The smell is fairly powerful.

A drink reveals a very refreshing and complex beer. I will attempt to record the experience of my taste buds, but i am sure it will be inadequate...The initial nose has a nice subdued malty sweetness with a tinge of orange peel, but is immediately overtaken by a powerful spicy presence and bitterness which lingers through two more changes of taste. After the powerful abdomen of spice recedes a bit, there is another hint of malty sweetness, but with a darker flavor than the initial taste. The finish is long and dry, and mouth-stiningly spicy. I don't usually spend this much verbiage on taste, but as my rating suggests, this is an exceptional taste. I don't take that rating lightly!

The mouthfeel is very nice with a high carbonation that keeps the beer coating your mouth long after the swallow.

Drinkability for me is very good, but this is a complex beer that deserves a critical pallet. If you love Saisons, seek this party out!

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Photo of TheJollyHop
4.62/5  rDev +16.4%
look: 4 | smell: 4.5 | taste: 4.5 | feel: 5 | overall: 5

This is definitely a beer to get the good times rolling! Refreshing and crisp. A nice one finger head on top of a pale to medium amber body. Steady stream of bubbles but the head dissipates fairly quickly.

Strong scents of yeast, spiciness from pepper, and some floral hops.

A lot of complexities going on with the taste. Very sweet upfront with some tang. Only the faintest bitterness explosion at the end. Orange citrus and biscuits noticeable early on, while yeast and pepper dominate the after taste. Nicely balanced with a dry finish.

Mouthfeel is medium carbonated and silky smooth; excites the palate. Overall a refreshingly crisp brew.

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Photo of SaucyA
4.6/5  rDev +15.9%
look: 4 | smell: 4 | taste: 5 | feel: 4 | overall: 5

A - Poured into a tulip, it kinda looks like someone took a leak into my glass. It's got a farily light golden clear color, with a foamy white head. Lots of bubbles shooting from the bottom confirm that it's not urine.

S - Belgian yeasty esters, slight hops riding the majorly fruity bulk. Smell is really nice. Random spices as well.

T - Oh yeah! This stuff is awesome! Perfectly balanaced between bitter, dry, sour, and sweet. I love the wave that sweeps over my tongue with each sip. Lots of fruit flavors, white wine affects, hop bitterness... just really well put-together.

M - Sparkly, light, airy.

D - Ultimate drinkability. It could help that it's a hot ass summer day, but this is goin down like water, and could continue to do so for a long, long time.

Notes: My saison kick has been supremely satiated with this brew. Love everything that's going on in it, and really love the fact that I have one more bottle. If you're a fan of the style, pick it up... you won't be sorry. Spanks Red Barn with a paddle.

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Photo of Fikash
4.54/5  rDev +14.4%
look: 4 | smell: 5 | taste: 4.5 | feel: 4 | overall: 4.5

A: Very frothy head, nice golden color. Nice lace to the froth as well, sticking well to the side of my Duvel glass.

S: What an amazing smell. This is why I love Saisons. Tropical fruit, banana, Belgian yeast, they all come through. I can smell this beer from the table!

T: I don't think you even need to be a beer guy to know that this is an exceptional beer. I love the fruitiness of this style, I almost feel like I've bitten into some kind of tropical fruit rather than just finished sipping a beer. The yeast flavors are actually rather understated, which is definitely a big plus for me, as these Belgian styles are typically dominated by that flavor in my experience. There is a complexity in the flavor that I could only identify if my palette was more refined.

M: The carbonation is on the heavier side, but not unpleasant. Medium mouthfeel. Very drinkable.

Overall: This is an exception example of the Saison style, which seems to be becoming easier to find as more breweries are taking a crack at it. It's delicious, highly drinkable, and not overwhelming at a modest 6.5% I highly recommend it if you dig this style.

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Photo of JohnGalt1
4.52/5  rDev +13.9%
look: 4 | smell: 4.5 | taste: 4.5 | feel: 4 | overall: 5

Received from Weibull as an EXTRA!! I've been sitting on this one since March because I wanted to do a "Saison" tasting that never materialized.. Thank Jason. Poured tonight as my ongoing cellar clearing project into my New Belgium Snifter..

2 finger eggshell head.. looks exactly liked whipped egg whites.. dies almost as slowly with a ton of beautiful lace.. the brew is a slightly hazy golden honey..

The nose is still surprisingly hoppy mixed with a great Belgian yeast component.. funky and citric.. pear juice and lemon zest.. grassy and floral hops are still very present.. but for the most part we're talking yeasty spiciness and citrus zest.

The depth in the palate is surprising.... yet very very balanced.. everything seems sooo in tune... nice bitterness and sorta a cookie dough pale maltiness with an enveloping spiciness and lite citric element throughout.. a little clove and white pepper.. floral and citric hops are wonderfull.. this is very very good.. the body is spot on and so is the carbonation..

I was feeling pretty damn guilty about cellaring a brew like this for sooo long.. but I honestly think it did some cool stuff.. much more complex than any American take on the Saison style I've ever tried.. and a damn site better than many of the Continental counterparts..

Edit: the drinkablity for the Carnevale is off the charts.. I want this beer as my goto beer.. I want this beer as the bottle that I take to parties... I want this beer to show the immense complexity and immense drinkability of great beer.. I love it.

Jason is a proper trader.. we should do it again, yet I doubt I have the ammo.

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Photo of hman43
4.52/5  rDev +13.9%
look: 4.25 | smell: 4.75 | taste: 4.5 | feel: 4.25 | overall: 4.5

Look: It pours pale gold with a full white, long lasting head. It has a slight haze to it with Belgian lace as the head recedes.

Smell: It has high citrus aromas with moderate earthly elements. It is moderately spicy with pepper.

Taste: It has flavors highlight by high fruit flavors with citrus and orange. There is also a moderate blend of earthen flavors, spice, and pepper. There is a low sour element as well. The complex flavors work well together.

Feel: It has high carbonation and a moderate feel. There is a low sour and bitter finish that is dry.

Overall, this is a very complex blend of aromas and flavors in an ale highlight by citrus and yeast.

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Photo of pat61
4.5/5  rDev +13.4%
look: 4.5 | smell: 4.5 | taste: 4.5 | feel: 4.5 | overall: 4.5

L: Pours hazy straw gold under a pillowy persistent clingy white foam collar.
S: The cork releases with a ferocious pop wafting up Belgian ale yeast and declaring just a faint touch of funk and over ripe fruit. As it fills the glass herbal, floral, earthy hop aromas rise.
T: Light lemony biscuit with light fruit and traces of caramel and citrus.
F: Very rich creamy texture with medium to medium full body, medium high carbonation. Carbonation is very soft.
O: A complex yet well balanced beer that is a delight to drink.

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

750ml bottle purchased at Julio's, Westboro, MA. Corked & caged.

Poured into a Rapscallion glass, formed a 1 1/2" bright white head above the clear golden brew. Pillowy head recedes slowly, with heavy frothy lacing. Aroma is lightly sweet and dominantly spicy yeast. Taste follows the nose, but the spicing is more blended and it all comes together nicely, with a crisp close. Mouthfeel is soft over the tongue, with easy drinkability. I expected quite a bit out of a $12 beer, but this one was all that and more.

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

Carnevale has some head on it! Seriously, it's the kind of thing you'd need a ladder to build. And the lacing it leaves, like the universe, seems to have no vestige of a beginning and no prospect of an end. It'd be perfect except its complexion is so bleak; a tired orange tone looks as faded as last year's straw and provides no highlights or clarity what so ever.

I don't know that this actually is what the Belgian countryside smells like in summer, but that's the image that popped into my mind after first sniffing this thing. The scent of hay and tall grass spew out the glass, followed by barnyard must and floral and fruity accents. Usually "stinky" is a bad word, but with regards to saisons it's greatly embraced.

Each sip, in a nutshell, is why I think saisons are so fantastic. Carnevale has an almost alarming spiciness - rammed into the palate with brute force, courtesy of a heavy-duty carbonation - that doesn't flame out so much as gradually wilt into an herbal, savory aftertaste. Tart and acidic notes dwell in orchard fruit (apple, pear) and barnyard flavours.

The beer isn't shy about its strength and wears its weight proudly. Bubbles just shy of champagne-level help scrub much of the warmth away but leave behind a soapy, herbal hop character that is very dry and earthy. It is gritty and pungent yet possesses a certain rustic charm that makes it curiously satisfying, as if you're afforded a taste of how ales once were.

I don't want to say that all American brewers are crafting Belgian ales that meet, or often exceed, the quality and complexity of their creators, but I think it's fair to say that Tomme Arthur puts out enough of them for the whole country. Carnevale is another one in a long line of Lost Abbey beers that remarkably captures the charm and character of a Belgian classic.

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

vintage 2009. yum. this beer turns my gears for sure. burnt gold with a slight haze and a nice, white head that shrinks but never disappears and leaves splotchy lace as the beer is drained. not really sure how it could look much better, but i'm not in to 5's. a lot going on in the nose although it seems to all be harmonizing nicely. the first things that come to mind are lemon, grape, apple and pastry. almost like a really good, proper apple pie that is laced with lemon. some pear and horse blanket as well as musty cellar and grass. just like the nose suggests, the taste is very well balanced. all the tastes are defined yet blended very well and the acid levels are just right to produce a lingering finish that is extremely pleasant. really good job balancing bitter and sour. hops come out in the middle and then gently dance with the sour funk in the end. earthy stuff comes out more as it warms up. soft. medium body on the light side of medium. impressive. tomme arthur deserves every bit of hype he gets. i need more!!

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Photo of pkalix
4.48/5  rDev +12.8%
look: 4.5 | smell: 4.5 | taste: 4.5 | feel: 4.25 | overall: 4.5

very nice opaque yellow with a good, creamy topping on top.
smell is fruity, belgian, yeasty.
taste is sweet and malty, belgian-y. nice little bit of bitterness at the end.
feels a little thin on the tongue, so i downgraded it a bit there, but that's just opinion.
overall, a very decent brew. emulates the belgian sister very well. rich, fruity. huge head.

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Photo of weeare138
4.47/5  rDev +12.6%
look: 4 | smell: 4.5 | taste: 4.5 | feel: 4.5 | overall: 4.5

Thanks to sydpanz for this...
Appears a hazy, orange toned gold with a 2 finger, off-white head that slowly fades down. Thick clumps of sticky, spotty lacing are left around the glass.
Smell is of wet hay, earthy hops, spices, and a delicate pepper aroma.
Taste is of the mentioned aroma with some mellow apple notes, along with standout citrus, and the earthy, wet hay flavors that has notes of mild funk.
Mouthfeel is medium bodied, spritzy of CO2, with dry, peppery notes in the finish.

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Photo of mikesgroove
4.45/5  rDev +12.1%
look: 4 | smell: 4 | taste: 4.5 | feel: 4.5 | overall: 5

Big thanks to Joey for hooking me up with this one. I am always thrilled when a new Lost Abbey comes out and this was no exception. Could not wait to get it home and pop open this beautifully designed 750 ml bottle. Fantastic artwork on this one as well, really very cool. Served right out of the fridge and poured into a Triple Carmeliet Goblet I could not wait to try it. If this is anything like any of the other brews I have had, I am really in for a treat here, not sure what to make of a dry hopped Saison, but I am sure as hell going to find out!

Appearance - This one poured a rich and extremely hazy golden amber. Lots of hints of orange throughout darkening it up quite a bit and really giving it a really nice overall color. A very large white billowing head of foam then formed on the top and really took off. It reached a height of almost three inches before finally started to calm down and come down to just a thin layer of white foam across the top. Huge amounts of side glass lace then came over it, really thickening up the overall look. Lots of carbonation visible throughout the session via streams of thick bubbles coming up from the bottom to reinforce everything above. Very rich and cloudy in appearance, very typical for the style.

Smell - The aroma was very light at first, which confounded me as usually everything from Lost Abbey overwhelms the senses all at once, however this was just getting warmed up as I would come to realize. A rich deep yeast presence was soon to overwhelm me. Lots of hints of light fruit coming through now, rich banana and peach smells, some light lemon and grapefruit now starting to show off the hops that no doubt lie inside. Some light grains really beginning to flex their muscles now as well. This was getting a little more interesting, just needed to warm up a tad I guess. Hints of some funk now showing up, is it Brett? Maybe, but too light to really tell for sure though... Very interesting aroma for a Saison and stretching the boundaries for sure.

Taste - The flavor followed suit perfectly, really being such a light and vibrant ale, I really did not know what to think of it at first. A wonderful mix her of a light Saison and fruity flavors that is almost impossible to describe, but let me give it a try. Started out with a nice light grain base that opened the door to everything that followed. Big grapefruit plunge came shooting up the alley at you; oh, this was dry hopped alright. Very nice bitter fresh hop flavor coming through now really starting to put through the press on this one. Its starts to wane only to let some of the light yeast fruit flavors move forward. Some hints at Banana now here, peaches, apples, a light smattering of fig, everything blending perfectly, seamlessly into each other. Now here comes the spice, nice tones or coriander and nutmeg, some peppery notes now just swirling about, never anything dominating anything else, but rather all working together to just create a wonderful light palate that was pleasing in every conceivable way. Starting to finish now the flavor is dragging along, really pulling the moisture from you until wait, is it our fried Brett, maybe, perhaps. Nevertheless, definitely some funky little notes here just were dropping in everywhere. Nice hints of sour now really starting to work there way around and give it a full on explosion of flavor, wow, incredibly light yet complex, another work of art here.

Mouthfeel - Much lighter here then I thought it would be. It was extremely well carbonated and had a very light texture and body to it. Strong clean finish and infinitely complex, classic for the style, if this actually fits into a style.

Drinkability - Cannot get better then this as far as a sessionable Saison. I mean c'mon, it is downright gorgeous. An obscenely low ABV of around 6% couple with huge bright flavors and stunning carbonation make for a beer that really could be drank anywhere at anytime, it was just that good. I was in love with this.

Overall, this was another knockout from Tomme and crew. I have said it before; there are two breweries that are just consistently outstanding for me, Lost Abbey and Pisgah. Lost Abbey though is a whole new level and this just reinforces it. If you can get this, you must it is insanely good and well deserving of any hype.

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Photo of RidiculedDisplay
4.45/5  rDev +12.1%
look: 4.5 | smell: 4.5 | taste: 4 | feel: 5 | overall: 5

On-tap at Beachwood BBQ.

Appearance: Pours a cloudy/opaque pear gold orange body, with a huge frothy head, and spot-patterned, consistent lacing. A very nice looking beer in a tulip glass.

Smell: Perfume-like aroma, very lightly on the front end. Hay. This is perhaps the "cleanest" smelling beer I've ever sniffed. White pepper. Brett on the back end, ever-so-faint. Wow, this is going to be something else.

Taste: Brett, orange rind, a very slight metallic taste, alcohol more prevalent here, and spiciness. This just tastes so clean and light, it's like the ultimate session beer for my tastes. However, the alcohol perceptibility and very slight metallicness detract, admittedly.

Mouthfeel: This is one of the best mouthfeels on a beer I've ever experienced. Just, as I've said, clean, clean, clean. Fizzy. Light. Slick. Wonderful beer to drink, it just *feels* good, and not from the ABV.

Drinkability: The most drinkable beer I've ever experienced. I guess this probably has to do with me not being a huge session beer guy, but it just was a great drinking experience - it's infinitely quaffable, you could have ten of them and it would just fly by.

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Photo of beerviews2013
4.45/5  rDev +12.1%
look: 4.5 | smell: 4.5 | taste: 4.5 | feel: 4 | overall: 4.5

pour: got a murky golden color liquid with a soapy thick foam head. This reminds me of a belgium style brew just by the pour you can tell.

smell: you get a sweet smell that is quite lovely.

taste: a nice blend of sour sweet and spice. More sweet then anything this is a nice brew by lost abbey. There is a nice fruitiness that is on this beer that makes it easy to drink and being a 6.5 abv its always good to make it easy to drink.

Overall: The spice is really nice on this not too harsh where it kills the taste just a nice smooth brew all the way through.

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Photo of JosiahS
4.45/5  rDev +12.1%
look: 4.5 | smell: 4.5 | taste: 4.5 | feel: 4 | overall: 4.5

glass: Tulip

Cloudy and effervescent pale orange-colored body. Generous 3-finger frothy white head. Leaves lots of splashy lacing around the rim.

Bright, delicate aromas of peach, lemon, clove, ripe banana, coriander and fresh cut grass. Body is medium with a bubbly feel in the mouth. Flavors of apricot, banana and lemon blend seamlessly into a delicate yet full-flavored brew. Heat on the back-end with a sharp bitter lemon zest finish.

Refreshing but a bit heavy for a hot summer day. Excellent beer overall.

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Photo of rye726
4.45/5  rDev +12.1%
look: 4.5 | smell: 4.5 | taste: 4 | feel: 5 | overall: 5

Pours a hazy straw color with a silky beige head. Nice lacing and retention. Nose has a collection of tropical and citrus fruits, bready malts, zesty spices, herbal hops and musky barnyard funk. Taste not quite as impressive, but well balanced. Fruity malts, earthy hops, peppery spices and a subtle wild yeast presence. Crisp body is well carbonated. Tasty stuff indeed.

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Photo of champ103
4.44/5  rDev +11.8%
look: 3.5 | smell: 4.5 | taste: 4.5 | feel: 4.5 | overall: 4.5

A: Pours a hazy golden/orange color. A one finger bubble white head forms, and recedes in a few minutes. Some sticky lace is left behind.
S: Up front is a good dose of funky barnyard and yeast. Sweet malt and some light fruity esters of apples, pears, and lemon. Grassy and floral hops. There are lots of complexities in the nose. Really inviting.
T: Does not disappoint. Funky barnyard and yeast again. Lots of fruity ester sweetness. Ripe apples are dominate. Lighter lemon flavors are present. There is a very light bitterness that makes for a great balance. Grassy and floral hops. Really well balanced.
M/D: A medium body and carbonation. Very creamy and smooth though. Dry and crisp. So smooth and easy to drink. I am having no problem finishing the bomber.

This is a great Saison. Lots of subtle complexities. There are a ton of hops, but they are never overpowered by the funky yeast and sweet fruity esters. Highly recommended.

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Photo of TurdFurgison
4.42/5  rDev +11.3%
look: 4 | smell: 4.5 | taste: 4.5 | feel: 4 | overall: 4.5

750ml corked bottle purchased from the Beverage Warehouse in LA for $8.99. This was my second Lost Abbey beer, and it matched the style very well. The smell was funky with aromas of grass, spice, maybe some apple, and generally good things. The taste was just like the smell, very funky and addictive. I think this competes well with any saison I've had to date, including the best from DuPont. Highly recommended.

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Photo of Gehrig
4.42/5  rDev +11.3%
look: 4 | smell: 4.5 | taste: 4.5 | feel: 4 | overall: 4.5

On vacation in Galena, IL, I grabbed this at the excellent Galena River Wine and Cheese Shop--literally the first place I've seen something from the well-regarded Lost Abbey here in Illinois. Terrific find, and well worth the price.

Hazy blond body with two fluffy fingers of white foam, nice lacing and duration. Funky but very fruity smell--lots of citrus mitigates the farmhouse funk to offer a distinct and rich aroma base. Plenty of lemon, orange rind, pear and even a bit of melon confront the nose and, thankfully, the palate. The smell is not unlike a tripel.

The fruit flavor is nicely offset by a dry flavor, but much more than many a Saison, this is much more sweet than sour. I don't mind that, and find it still a fine representative of the style. I'm admittedly a bit torn on judging the mouthfeel. I like it quite a bit, but am leering away from a 4.5 primarily because it could be a bit more effervescent. That said, the smooth malty flavor and texture are more than welcome on my palate.

Excellent Saison, one I'll be happy to procure again and one that ensures I will seek out more from the storied Lost Abbey. Very well done. I'm certainly impressed.

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Photo of drtth
4.4/5  rDev +10.8%
look: 4 | smell: 4 | taste: 4.5 | feel: 4 | overall: 5

Served in a snifter glass. Glass of cold water on the side to sip from periodically.

Appearance: As served the beer is a lightly hazed golden apricot color with a ¾" off-white head that recedes visibly to leave patches and streaks of lacing on the side of the glass. Sipping creates some nice patterns of lacing. Before long the head has become a small ring of foam around the glass with a thin irregular patch on the surface of the liquid.

Smell: The aroma is fresh and filled with the scents of Belgian yeast. It is pleasantly spicy and fruity with some pears and citrus zest. Lurking in the background there seems to be a trace of mustiness and a bit of clove and possibly white pepper.

Taste: The flavors are complex in that they begin with some lightly sweet bready character that gives way to some herbal dry bitterness. The sweetness is a bit like honey with some floral, citrus character. The dry herbal bitterness replaces the sweetness but remains subdued throughout and so doesn't overbalance the beer.

Mouthfeel: The mouth feel is medium to light bodied and nicely smooth with adequate but lightly prickly carbonation. The finish is the great strength and surprise of this beer. Except for any advance information there is, at first, little to warn that this beer is made with American rather than noble hops.

Drinkability and Overall Impression: This is a wonderfully drinkable beer with each sip leading easily to the next. I'll be happy to see this beer again and I'm already trying to figure out where to get a case. My overall impression is of a well-made saison-like beer that is an imaginative combination of a Belgian style made with some uniquely American ingredients (the hops) that just works.

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Carnevale from The Lost Abbey
3.97 out of 5 based on 804 ratings.
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