Eric's Ale | New Belgium Brewing

Eric's AleEric's Ale
698 Ratings
Eric's AleEric's Ale

Brewed by:
New Belgium Brewing
Colorado, United States

Style: American Wild Ale

Alcohol by volume (ABV): 7.00%

Availability: Rotating

Notes / Commercial Description:
50/50 blend of fresh strong golden lager and three year wild beer. Peaches added then re-pitched with lager yeast using the fructose for the final fermentation.

Lips Of Faith #3

Added by Floydster on 05-04-2008

Bros Score:
User Ratings & Reviews
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Ratings: 698 |  Reviews: 270
Photo of eptolemy
1.08/5  rDev -73.5%

Photo of bagpiper2005
1.41/5  rDev -65.4%
look: 3 | smell: 2 | taste: 1 | feel: 1.5 | overall: 1

Had a taste of this at the Mountain Brewer's Beer Festival in Idaho Falls.

Pour: Light amber color with very little head. Kind of boring looking, not much to it.

Smell: Faint malt smell, no hops, and somewhat acidic.

Taste: Akin to concentrated lemon juice. No real beer flavor to speak of, only sourness and bitterness. Awful.

Mouthfeel: Thin and watery with high carbonation.

Drinkability: Undrinkable.

Final Notes: Of all the beers I tried, this was only beer I actually gagged on and spit out. Not recommended at all.

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Photo of TPSReports
1.97/5  rDev -51.7%
look: 2 | smell: 2.5 | taste: 1.5 | feel: 2.5 | overall: 2

I had a taste of this on tap at the brewery in CO. It is served in limited quantities with the brewmaster, Eric is making it.

It has a bit of a flourescent color, kinda like urine after drinking a gatorade. The smell was peachy, literally.

The taste? Wow is was sour. Second sip? More sour than the first. I couldn't notice much else in this brew -- it was basically a sour peach candy flavor. To be fair, I met a few people at the brewery that were having growlers filled with this beer to take on the road with them. I didn't understand it, but they loved it.

I won't be searching for this beer.

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Photo of beertunes
2.48/5  rDev -39.2%
look: 3.5 | smell: 3 | taste: 2 | feel: 2.5 | overall: 2.5

Served in Imperial pint glass. Poured a clean, clear, honey-gold color with over an inch of creamy white head that had good retention and OK lacing.

The aroma was an oddly sweet-sour scent, that was very muted. Not much personality showed in the nose. The taste was unpleasantly sour, not the bold interesting sour typical of the style. I didn't really pick up any other flavors, but there had to be some there. Right?

The body was thin, but still OK. Drinkability was just meh. You could drink this, but why? Overall, not a very interesting brew, you won't be missing anything if you skip over it.

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Photo of birchstick
2.92/5  rDev -28.4%
look: 3 | smell: 3.5 | taste: 2.5 | feel: 3 | overall: 3

Pours a dark, caramel brownish amber without much of a head. Smells of peaches And some grain malts. Taste follows the nose. A bit of a peach flavor, but rather subtle. next are some VERY muted sour citric tones. Not much else on the palate. I was extremely underwhelmed by this guy. I don't know where all of the flavors went on this, maybe it was a bad keg?

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Photo of NickMunford
3/5  rDev -26.5%

Photo of phishbone23
3/5  rDev -26.5%

Photo of getkrunkhoe
3/5  rDev -26.5%

Photo of 6DaysBottomOcean
3.13/5  rDev -23.3%
look: 3 | smell: 2.5 | taste: 3 | feel: 3.5 | overall: 4

Bomber poured into a Hill Farmstead wine glass..

With little to no head whatsoever this looks like apple juice in the glass. Aroma of sweet apples, pears, grains (pilsner malt?) with a minor phenolic tartness. I'm not quite getting the peaches on the taste, apricots maybe. Sourness is is restrained and only noticeable via prickle of carbonation, in fact sour is too strong a word. Medium to heavy mouthfeel for the style, perhaps a lighter body would allow the flavors to be more pronounced. Still, this beer is enjoyable and i wouldn't mind having it again.

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Photo of PuckLSHS
3.14/5  rDev -23%
look: 3 | smell: 4 | taste: 3 | feel: 3 | overall: 2.5

I had this one on tap today at Hollingshead in Orange, CA.

Appearance- Light in color, a very very light amber color. It was very bubbly and clear.

Smell- Peach, tropical fruit and a very fruity finish...VERY fruity smell. Definitely masked the sourness in the taste portion of the night.

Taste- Sweet and very sour fruit beer that, for me, is just a tad overwhelming for the actual brew. I would prefer a slightly less sour flavor so that I could get a bit more of the peach flavor that I got in the smell.

Mouthfeel- Very crisp and dry. Close to a brut champagne.

Drinkability- I would get this again at the end of a night, but I would not pick it as a great everyday beer. It has a more sour taste than most of the flemish sours than I am used to. Not counting this one out, but not entirely thrilled with it.

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Photo of unclekeith
3.21/5  rDev -21.3%
look: 4.5 | smell: 3.5 | taste: 2.5 | feel: 4 | overall: 3.5

Photo of beerbrains
3.25/5  rDev -20.3%

Photo of DeadeyeOTDO
3.25/5  rDev -20.3%
look: 3.25 | smell: 3.25 | taste: 3.25 | feel: 3.25 | overall: 3.25

Photo of AlexFields
3.25/5  rDev -20.3%

Photo of Suds_With_Buds
3.25/5  rDev -20.3%
look: 3.25 | smell: 4.5 | taste: 2.5 | feel: 3.25 | overall: 3.25

This was surprising, I had heard great thing about Erics Ale from a good amount of people who don't really enjoy sours or fruited beer.

I really didn't enjoy this.

The nose is solid, getting nice peach notes. The appearance is a slightly murky golden hue with good carb.

The taste is where this brew fell apart in my opinion, after taking a big whiff and preparing to be blown away, I am met with very very subtle peache flavors and wood characteristics that are almost immediately replaced with a funky bland almost bandaid like taste.

Pretty dissapointed with how this stacked up to the word of mouth.

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Photo of Brew33
3.25/5  rDev -20.3%

Photo of retry4z
3.25/5  rDev -20.3%
look: 3.25 | smell: 3.25 | taste: 3.25 | feel: 3.25 | overall: 3.25

Photo of AndyCowles75
3.25/5  rDev -20.3%

Photo of kojevergas
3.28/5  rDev -19.6%
look: 3.75 | smell: 3.25 | taste: 3.25 | feel: 3.25 | overall: 3.25

BOTTLE: Brown glass. 1 pint 6 fl oz. Branded red pry-off crown cap. Fancy screen-print label art. 2015 vintage. Best before April 2, 2017.

Served chilled into a tulip. Expectations are quite high given the deliciousness of New Belgium's Le Terroir and La Folie.

HEAD: ~2 inches wide. Fluffy and white. Good adequately thick consistency, good complexion. Retention is above average - ~4 minutes. Leaves no lacing as it recedes.

BODY: Vibrant gold. Clean; no yeast is visible within. Appears well-carbonated.

It's a nice looking sour ale. I'm eager to try it.

AROMA: It does smell a bit off, actually - hinting at vomit. Hm. Peach, pear, acid, pilsner malt, lime, sour apple, and lactobacillus bacteria. I don't pick up on any lambicus yeast(s), and the bacterial sourness seems somewhat one-dimensional. Sourness seems disappointingly tame...maybe 3/10 in terms of intensity?

Suggests an imbalanced but enjoyable sour ale that lacks the complexity of, say, La Folie.

Not boozy.

TASTE: The sourness is indeed disappointingly reticent and downplayed, coming in at a 3-4/10 in terms of intensity of flavour. The peach is nice, ringing distinct and vivid, but the depth of flavour just isn't there; this doesn't burst with fresh orchard peach fruit like it ought to. Additionally, it almost hints at marmalade or peach jam - playing it sweet when it should play it sour. Hints of other fruits come into play throughout: sour green apple, lime, cider, maybe even pear. The malt backbone is clean and light, comprised of pilsner/golden malts. Lactobacillus seems to provide the entirety of the sourness; neither pedio nor lambicus yeast make appearances.

It does slightly remind me a bit of vomit; I'm not sure if that's just the acidity combined with some kind of off-note. The beer is not as off-putting as that descriptor makes it sound, and it really is quite faint - but it's there.

Not particularly well-balanced. This lacks the intricacy and depth of flavour of superior sour ales (like New Belgium's own La Folie), but it's pleasant enough for what it is. I hoped for a more tart peach presence.

As a blend, it tastes quite young. Using older constituent sours would obviously help curb this, but maybe the heavy reliance on pilsner malts is also doing the beer a disservice.

Ale esters are strangely absent. Oddly, there's zero wood/barrel presence whatsoever. No acetic notes, no unifying oak, no wine. I'd like to see New Belgium ditch the foeders in favour of barrels, and give this more time in wood.

TEXTURE: Acidic. Somewhat refreshing. Smooth, wet, light. Not as smacky as most bacterial sours are. It doesn't induce puckering.

Decently executed, but not quite there. Not boozy, astringent, gushed, or hot or anything, but lackluster.

OVERALL: This entry into the Lips of Faith series is better than most of its brethren, but never quite rises to the high quality seen in La Folie or Le Terroir. Pricey by Lips of Faith standards, to boot. It's enjoyable and I'm glad I tried it once, but I wouldn't purchase a second bottle. More sourness, more wood presence (i.e. any wood presence), and deeper peach notes would really improve this. Basically, if you're going to brew a fruited sour, I recommend going big on the fruit and huge on the sourness. This, unfortunately, does neither.

If anything, this has me curious to try the older constituent sour used in the blend. As-is, the blend hardly seems harmonious; indeed, it even seems diluted. Discerning drinkers familiar with New Belgium's other sours will find this ultimately to be quite a let-down, but generally speaking it's well above average.

Low B- (3.28)

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Photo of DavoleBomb
3.3/5  rDev -19.1%
look: 3.5 | smell: 3.5 | taste: 3 | feel: 3.5 | overall: 3.5

Poured into a tulip.

3.5 A: Lightly hazed golden color. Two fingers of frothy white head with just below average retention and not really any lacing.

3.5 S: Definitely more funky and fruity than sour. The peach comes through well initially, but fades upon further sniffs, and there's some wild apple in there too. A touch of muskiness and general barnyard. A smaller touch of acetic acid. Good, but would be great if it was more intense.

3.0 T: The taste suffers from the same problem as the nose. It's tasty, but the flavors seem muted. Not nearly as sour or funky as I had predicted. The peach flavor is there and it probably is the major component of the taste. Other than that, there is a light barnyard flavor and a light acetic acid flavor. Some apple and pear as well. Mild sweetness to balance. A small amount of oak and a tiny amount of astringency.

3.5 M: Lightish body. Good moderate carbonation. Could be creamier. Average.

3.5 D: Goes down really easy, but this isn't the greatest. Aroma and taste need to be amplified about 5X for this to be a good brew. It is tasty though. In any case, I needed a good sour fix and this didn't do it.

 1,154 characters

Photo of barleywinefiend
3.3/5  rDev -19.1%
look: 4 | smell: 4 | taste: 3 | feel: 3 | overall: 3

A:Poured a golden color with good carbonation leaving a small white head

S: Light peach, sourness and funk

T: Where is the peach? Plenty of sourness and funk though

M:Dry, well carbonated, booze

D: While it was not bad I was looking for flavor other than straight sourness

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Photo of caskstrength
3.31/5  rDev -18.9%
look: 4.5 | smell: 3.5 | taste: 3 | feel: 4 | overall: 3

Peach not evident. If it didn't say it on the label, doubt I would identify it. More lactic than acetic sourness, but not intensely sour. Fruit there too. Mouthfeel as expected, not too thin or thick. Didn't find much wood or oak or other barrel aged things.

Verdict: nothing stands out here. Most of the sours I've had so far are better. Can't see me drinking this much down the road. Kind of got bored half way through the bottle.

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Photo of wisrarebeer
3.32/5  rDev -18.6%
look: 3 | smell: 3.5 | taste: 3.5 | feel: 3 | overall: 3

$8.99 for a 22oz bottle

A: mid-brown, slight haze, poured with a nice head that dissipated in about 5 minutes
S: mid sour nose but doesn't parallel Belgium sours, seems a bit unrefined and lack depth and finish
T: pronounced sourness, peach is not overly noticeable, not in the league of Belgium sours but decent attempt, lacked complexity and refinement
M: not overly carbonated, lacks depth and character, more like a lambic than a gueuze

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Photo of HalfFull
3.33/5  rDev -18.4%
look: 4 | smell: 3.5 | taste: 3 | feel: 3.5 | overall: 3.5

Served up in a wine glass from a 22 oz. bomber. Eric's Ale pours a golden straw with a light cap of foam. Offers a nice clarity and maintains a light cap, dispersing some spotty lacing.

Nose is sweet and tart and a bit sour with some earthy hops through the foam. Quite welcoming though surely not overwhelming. Touch of light fruit and alcohol esters and with a subtle hint of sourness after a long draw.

Taste is light and follows the nose. Bit of sweet fruit and only slightly tart. Carbonation is present though subtle and nicely balanced. Green apple and pear seem more dominant than any peach flavors until the finish. Not too wild about this wild ale. Typical feel and finish yet underwhelming.

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Photo of bonsreeb85
3.36/5  rDev -17.6%
look: 4 | smell: 3 | taste: 3 | feel: 4 | overall: 4

Crystal clear copper, thin quickly fading head that turns to a nice looking film over the top of the brew.

The smell is of oak, tart stone fruits and very sweet/sour.

Flavor is tart yet not overly so as it rounds out to a sweetness. THe peaches are definately detectable. The wood facet is understated but present. Honestly I could go for a little less peach, and more complexity. This isn't quite carbonated peach juice, for it definately has some sourness, but it is like the bottle says "a sour for those who dislike sours"

The body is pretty light and there is an abundant amount of carbonation.

Drinkability is okay, nothing to great. I would not seek this one out again. I do not regret giving it a go though. If nothing else it is definately refreshing.

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Eric's Ale from New Belgium Brewing
Beer rating: 4.08 out of 5 with 698 ratings
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