La Folie
New Belgium Brewing Company

La FolieLa Folie
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Flanders Oud Bruin
Ranked #2
Ranked #895
4.28 | pDev: 10.05%
New Belgium Brewing Company
Colorado, United States
La FolieLa Folie
Notes: Flemish Sour Brown Ale fermented in stainless then transferred to barrels for 1-4 years of aging then blended to taste.
Reviews: 1,087 | Ratings: 4,049 | Log in to view all ratings and sort
Photo of ovaltine
4.42/5  rDev +3.3%
look: 4.5 | smell: 4.25 | taste: 4.5 | feel: 4.25 | overall: 4.5

Pours a mahogany brown color with a substantial tan head that sticks around for a bit, which is usually not the case with sours in my experience. I like it. There are also reddish tints on the edges as you hold this up to light. What a gorgeous beer.

The first thing I notice on the nose is caramel notes, which bodes well for me (I LOVE caramel). There’s loads of funky, fruity sour aromas, of course, and I was searching for oak notes but alas, I didn’t find them.

The taste is as described on the bomber, with tart apples and sour cherries flavors in abundance and the caramel and a hint of vanilla from the oak at the end of the taste.

The mouthfeel is on the verge of puckerville, but backs away at the end. This is a truly magnificent sour, IMHO, because it’s not just sour - there’s depth to this world-class beer.

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Photo of GarrettB
4.26/5  rDev -0.5%
look: 4 | smell: 4.25 | taste: 4.5 | feel: 3.5 | overall: 4.25

October 25th, 2015 - This ancient brew is coming out of storage for a special occasion. 2007 marks the year of my college graduation and isn't far from my first bottle of La Folie, but we also acknowledge that like my body, the beer has probably aged terribly in eight years, and we are prepared for its flaws. On the nose I smell Bragg's apple cider vinegar, white grape juice and a little cinnamon. The lighter vinegar smell reminds me of sushi rice, as does the ginger note. After that comes some pear juice to round out the aroma, all of which is rich and beautiful. And to my surprise the flavor has matured beautifully too. I taste white balsamic vinegar, dancing in recision with white grape and a berry medley, and supported with a carbonation that hasn't managed to escape from the bottle in the intervening years. My drinking buddy could use more bubbles and a palate, but I find it acceptable, and spent the rest of my time ignoring my notes and enjoying the beer in a quiet bliss.

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Photo of Parmesan
4.47/5  rDev +4.4%
look: 4 | smell: 4.5 | taste: 4.5 | feel: 4.5 | overall: 4.5

L:. Pours a dark purple brown with no head or lacing.

S:. Dark cherry, plum, vinegar, sour, a hint of chocolate and caramel, very complex and interesting.

T:. Sweet plum and cherry, vinegar, chocolate a touch of smoke, char, sour, some caramel.

F:. Slick body, medium feel.

O:. La Folie is always a treat regardless of where you have it.

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Photo of MonDak_Joe1953
4.31/5  rDev +0.7%
look: 4 | smell: 4.25 | taste: 4.5 | feel: 4 | overall: 4.25

22oz bottle. 2015 vintage. "Seriously sour, this Flanders-style reddish brown ale was aged 1-3 years in French oak barrels for mouthpuckering perfection."
Reddish brown colored body, really displays the red tint when back lit. Minimal light tan head. There are just a few scattered spots of lacing left behind.
Aroma of vinegar, red grape, cherry, plum, raisin, oak, and caramel.
Taste is sour and it ends dry. Flavors of vinegar, red grape, raisin, green apple, and something akin to chocolate. Also has the oak barrel influence. Aftertaste is the sour red grape and green apple.
Medium mouth feel. The dryness pulls the beer through the mouth. Good carbonation.
This is a beer that brings on puckering but also has very good flavors and smells that entice another sip.

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Photo of Bshaw22
4.18/5  rDev -2.3%
look: 4 | smell: 4 | taste: 4.25 | feel: 4.25 | overall: 4.25

Had on tap at Café Hollander Wauwatosa, WI.
I don't love sours but heard this was good. Pours dark brown with creamy white head. A lot of vinegar and funk on the nose.
Taste is pretty balanced. You pucker at first but the funk and some dark sour fruits balance out. It's pretty good.
one would be enough.

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Photo of Thankin_Hank
4.22/5  rDev -1.4%
look: 4.75 | smell: 4 | taste: 4.25 | feel: 4.25 | overall: 4.25

A dark beer with a nice head. You can smell the sour. It’s strong. The taste is strong sour up front but smooths out the more you indulge. The mouthfeel is different in that it’s a sour and your tongue adapts to that as you go along. Overall it’s another reason to try sours as this one is very good. On draft at Ron’s Corner Tavern.

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Photo of GuyFawkes
4.25/5  rDev -0.7%
look: 4.25 | smell: 4.25 | taste: 4.25 | feel: 4.25 | overall: 4.25

Ruby color.

Minimal khaki head; no lace.

Raspberry nose; slight chocolate.

Thin mouthfeel.

Strong tart cherry flavor up front; slight chocolate covered raspberry undercurrent. Plus notes of oak.


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Photo of mikeg67
4/5  rDev -6.5%
look: 4 | smell: 4 | taste: 4 | feel: 4 | overall: 4

22 oz bottle 2016. Pours reddish-brown with tall, long-lasting, foamy off-white head. Nose is of funky yeast, caramel malt and red fruit. Body is full and tangy. Taste is very sour, funky yeast, caramel and red fruit. Finish is long and sour. Nice sour brew.

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Photo of Beejay
4/5  rDev -6.5%
look: 4 | smell: 4 | taste: 4 | feel: 4 | overall: 4


A: dark brown with a light tan head

S: very tart with oak and dark fruit.

T: oak, tartness, berry, with a touch of bourbon,and some earthiness.

M: light in body, moderate carbonation, and a dry finish.

O: tasty, sour, and classic.

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Photo of Gajo74
4.33/5  rDev +1.2%
look: 4.25 | smell: 4.25 | taste: 4.25 | feel: 4.5 | overall: 4.5

Pours an attractive looking brown and ruby color with a decent sized foam head. The head displays good retention.
The aromas immediately hint at its tartness, with a hint of white wine vinegar, green apples and dry spider. Complimentary aromas of dark add a nice touch.
The taste matches the aroma with its flavors of dark fruit, plum, raisins and sour cherries. The tartness is moderate, with vinous flavors of red grape, cider and green apples. Solid amber malt base still shines through. The finish is just right, with a slight mouth puckering acidity and refreshing dryness.
Medium bodied, fruity and dry with a smooth carbonation. Multidimensional and balanced with just the right amount of tartness.
This might be my favorite New Belgium brew so far. Well done for the style, dynamic and not too acidic, thoroughly enjoyable.

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Photo of BeerBrotherJaymo
3.35/5  rDev -21.7%
look: 3.5 | smell: 3.5 | taste: 3.25 | feel: 3.5 | overall: 3.25

Very very tart. Can be an absolutely delicious beverage when paired with a meal that cuts it appropriately however this beverage is unslammable. A little after halfway it can be too tart to finish without some help. Something to relax with for sure.

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Photo of drdiesel9483
4.15/5  rDev -3%
look: 4.25 | smell: 4.25 | taste: 4 | feel: 4.25 | overall: 4.25

Look - brown color with slight foam
Smell - sweet dark fruit and maybe some maple syrup
Taste - real sweet dark red cherry and very tart
Feel - medium light body with a crisp carbonation
Overall - tart and yummy

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Photo of mynie
4.86/5  rDev +13.6%
look: 4.5 | smell: 4.75 | taste: 5 | feel: 5 | overall: 4.75

Bottle begotten from the brewery. Uncorked about 2 months later.

A very dark pour for an Oud Bruin. Across the table, it's almost stouty looking. It's got a respectable, tight brown head astop a very dark and nearly opaque body.

Aroma is very bright, as is par for the style, but it lacks any of the overly acidic or vingery nodes that are also common in Oud Bruins. Here, that absence is quite welcome, as it leaves room for plums, red wine, and a nice rounded woodiness.

Tastes like it smells, only smoother and with a bone dry finish. Tart cherry brett up front, moving into a plumy and vinous middle with just a hint of vinegar, ending wonderfully rounded and dry as the barrel aging and bacterial sourness move into near-perfect interplay with one another.

Even today, with sours flooding market and every month-old brewery cranking out a horribly named Sour Something or Other, this beer stands out. In 2002, it must have been a goddamn revelation. I'm glad I've finally gotten to try it.

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Photo of Tsar_Riga
4.43/5  rDev +3.5%
look: 4.25 | smell: 4.25 | taste: 4.5 | feel: 4.5 | overall: 4.5

A - Dark copper, brown body, transparent. Light tan head, with an orange tinge.

S - Brisk and bright nose, sour fruit suggesting plum, and a definite woody note.

T - Delicious tart apple notes, hints of plum flesh, a middle more wine-like with bright grape and mild oak, and a finish that is soft with a touch of bitterness reminiscent of over-steeped black tea and a lingering sour line that lasts well after all other flavors fade.

M - Solid carbonation, a middle of the road feel, moderate weight and subtle acidity. The close trails, with just a hint on the tongue that takes time to fade.

O - From a 2015 bottle, this was a hugely rewarding beer, with great flavors and feel, a surprisingly welcoming nose. A subtle experience that rewards attention, but is also pleasant enough to please without careful examination. One of the best Oud Bruins I've had.

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Photo of matcris
4.54/5  rDev +6.1%
look: 4 | smell: 4.25 | taste: 4.75 | feel: 4.75 | overall: 4.5

LOOKS: Solid brown/mahogany, with a two finger tan head that lasts.
AROMA: Sweet, tart, big Maraschino cherries, sweet tart candies, red and white grapes, you can go on and on...
TASTE: Very tart, but, also a sweet undertone. Huge green apple, grapes, again, sweet tarts, and a touch of cocoa.
FEEL: Very tight carbonation, perfect, and huge. Very dry throughout, medium full body.
OVERALL: Brilliant.

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Photo of kitch
4.08/5  rDev -4.7%
look: 4.25 | smell: 4.25 | taste: 4 | feel: 4 | overall: 4

A 22 fl. oz. bomber, 2016 vintage, bottled on 19th December 2015. Poured into a 3 Fonteinen stemmed glass.

Appearance: A dark reddish brown colour with a two fingered creamy tanned head that had decent retention and left some nice lacing.

Aroma: Tart cherry, vinous, wine with hints of plum, raisin, oak and vinegar.

Taste: Tart, sour, cherry, plum, vinous and oak with hints of green apple. A good lasting sour finish.

Mouthfeel: Medium bodied with moderate carbonation.

Overall: A nice and great tasting Oud Bruin.

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Photo of Davedrinkinbeer
4.36/5  rDev +1.9%
look: 4.5 | smell: 4 | taste: 4.5 | feel: 4.25 | overall: 4.5

Poured into a snifter. Look is a dark brown/ruby color with quickly dissipating head. Smell is sour apples, yeast, malt. Taste is more sour apple, with cherries, brett, and candy sugar. Mouthful is evenly balanced, lightly carbonated, moderate sourness, and finishes dry with a pleasant sour fruit aftertaste.

This is probably the best sour beer New Belgium makes. I wish it was easier to find and that they also sold it in 12oz bottles, but this is very enjoyable. A good sour beer, not too sour but just right IMO.

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Photo of omahawk
4.29/5  rDev +0.2%
look: 3.75 | smell: 4 | taste: 4.5 | feel: 4.5 | overall: 4.25

Pours a dark ruby brown with 1 cm lacing that lingers. Smell is sour fruit. Taste is a great balance of carbonation, sour, fruit, and malt. Just a wonderfully drinkable sour barrel aged beer. Hints of cherry and green apple. Mouthfeel is light, fizzy balanced with slight sour bite. Great Belgian style beer.

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Photo of Harrison8
4.2/5  rDev -1.9%
look: 4.25 | smell: 4.25 | taste: 4.25 | feel: 3.75 | overall: 4.25

Vintage '15.

Pours a dark brown-red with a finger of khaki head. Fair head retention and a few laces. Aroma is cherries, dark fruit with biscuit and bread malts. Light sour twinge to it. Flavor profile is cherries, dark fruit, and plum. Light biscuit and bread malts as well. It carries a light lactic sourness to it. Mouth feel is smooth, and somewhat watery, giving it a thin feel. Overall, very tasty and smooth. It has a pleasant level of sour, without being a sucker punch to the jaw.

Served in a 12oz snifter from a 22oz bottle.

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Photo of GreesyFizeek
4.33/5  rDev +1.2%
look: 4.5 | smell: 4.5 | taste: 4.25 | feel: 4.25 | overall: 4.25

This one pours a dark-ish brown, with a small head, and not much lacing.

This smells like sweet breadiness, red wine vinegar, cherries, dark fruit (prunes), and woodiness.

This is definitely a classic beer, and very enjoyable. It's quite malty, which is nice, with caramel and breadiness, along with sour cherries, red wine, light chocolate, and toasted oak. This is really complex, but it remains super drinkable.

This is medium bodied, a bit creamy, with a good level of carbonation.

This is a classic for a reason- a lot of care went into this one.

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Photo of BEERMILER12
4.36/5  rDev +1.9%
look: 4.25 | smell: 4.5 | taste: 4.25 | feel: 4.25 | overall: 4.5

A: Pours a deep mahogany color with 2 fingers of head that fades down to a thin cap

S: Some acetic/vinegar notes up front along with plenty of funk. Dark fruits and caramel maltiness in there as well, along with the oak and woody undertones

T: Follows the nose. Starts off with a bit of the tartness and funky notes, light acetic, dark fruits, oak, and dark chocolate. Green apple definitely stands out quite a bit amongst the funk and tartness. Caramel maltiness brings some sweetness to cut the tartness a bit. Finishes with lingering dark fruits and oak

M: Medium bodied with moderate carbonation

O: A great oud bruin that is plenty funky and foeder-y enough, especially for an American version of the style. Nice to sip on and enjoy the complexities of. Definitely worth checking out, it's interesting to compare to the European classics

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Photo of gshak
3.63/5  rDev -15.2%
look: 4 | smell: 3.5 | taste: 3.5 | feel: 4 | overall: 3.75

Well...very underwhelmed given the 94/100 rating on BA. Perhaps I was seeking something along the lines of a Rodenbach, instead what I got was a Fat tire that had been soured in barrels. I think the Fat tire and friends series had some very comparable, even better, beers at the very excellent price point of $1/bottle (costco pricing). Onto the beer itself.
A - Brown, and flat with minimal lacing or head. Ample carbonation in the beer itself, it just wasn't making its presence felt, which is ok, given it is a sour beer. I've come to expect that not all sour beers generate a head.
S - A brown ale with sour notes - i.e., toasted malt with some faint bread notes, some fruit notes, slight wine vinegar.
T - Just like drinking a fat tire brown ale that has been soured a bit. While the fat tire itself isn't a very memorable beer, drinking a 22oz-er that has been soured a bit, was a tad too much for me.
M - Medium.
O - Oh well...glad I ticked it off my list, but won't be buying any more, especially given its price. I'd be happy chasing a Rodenbach or two for that price.

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Photo of Viaduck
4.22/5  rDev -1.4%
look: 4 | smell: 3.75 | taste: 4.5 | feel: 4.25 | overall: 4.25

Pours a dark reddish bown with a modest light tan head that didn't last long. Aroma is understated, some vinegar, ripe fruit & not much more. Taste is slightly sweet, slightly sour, sour apple & chery, grain & caramel & a sweet finish. Nice amount of carbonation & smooth feel. An excellent thirst quencher & very refreshing

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Photo of MikeWard
4.19/5  rDev -2.1%
look: 4.25 | smell: 4 | taste: 4.25 | feel: 4.25 | overall: 4.25

22oz bottle into a tall glass. 2017 vintage

Really nice color on this, a deep burgundy wine hue. Small off white body which persists all the way through leaving scattered lacing.

Aroma is primarily of apples.

Good but not overpowering sour tartness. Mostly apple, but there is a little cherry as well. The oak is only faintly present.

Getting close to full on the mouth, tart and sour on the finish.

Overall, a really nice drink. Think this is only my second Flanders Oud Bruin. Time to look for more.

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Photo of Lone_Freighter
4.09/5  rDev -4.4%
look: 3.75 | smell: 4 | taste: 4.25 | feel: 4 | overall: 4

I poured this into a tulip. The appearance was a nice dark brown color with some ever so slight ruby to red edges. The head was less than a half a finger with a solid clingy white lacing sticking mighty finely to the sides of the glass. The smell was a decent sour to tart fruity aroma indicating amounts of apples and peaches with a decent woody edge to it. There is a nice earthiness coming out as well. The taste is sour leading with the peaches and apples taking over a nice tart background. The aftertaste is soured peaches and apples to end up leading into a dry sour and tart finish. On the palate, it sits about a medium on the body. Carbonation felt fine, a bit under than expected but not letting the beer become cloying. ABV felt appropriate yet non-distracting. Overall, pretty nicely done Flanders Oud Bruin, fans of the style will most likely be seeking this one out.

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La Folie from New Belgium Brewing Company
Beer rating: 95 out of 100 with 4049 ratings