Eric's Ale | New Belgium Brewing

Eric's AleEric's Ale
BA SCORE
4.08/5
698 Ratings
Eric's AleEric's Ale
BEER INFO

Brewed by:
New Belgium Brewing
Colorado, United States
newbelgium.com

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

BEER STATS
Ranking:
#2,436
Reviews:
270
Ratings:
698
pDev:
9.56%
Bros Score:
0
 
 
Wants:
214
Gots:
111
Trade:
1
HISTOGRAM
 
User Ratings & Reviews
Sort by:  Recent | High | Low | Top Raters
Ratings: 698 |  Reviews: 270
Photo of DenverBigRed
3.77/5  rDev -7.6%
look: 4 | smell: 3.75 | taste: 3.75 | feel: 3.75 | overall: 3.75

Photo of Crubbsy
4.45/5  rDev +9.1%
look: 4.5 | smell: 4.5 | taste: 4.5 | feel: 4 | overall: 4.5

Poured from bomber bottle into a taller tulip glass.

Appearance: Nice semi-transparent golden color. Very little head on the pour, and almost none remaining in glass. Very cloudy with larger particulates sticking to glass (peach particulates or yeast?).

Smell: Amazing peach aroma. Can smell a hint of the sour notes coming in if I look for them, but peach smell dominates the nose.

Taste: Great balance between tart sour flavor and the fruitiness of the peach. Not to sweet and fruity, but not too sour either. Fairly acidic. The wood character is there, and adds an nice complexity to the beer.

Mouthfeel: Fairly astringent, but pretty much what I would expect from a sour fruit beer.

Overall: Delicious beer. Would be perfect for a warm summer day. Great balance between sweet and sour. Fruit constitutes so much of the character of the beer without making it seem like a wine cooler. Wood aged sours are one of my new favorite styles, and this beer rivals the best of the ones I've had.

A-

 1,014 characters

Photo of mwm5062
4.31/5  rDev +5.6%
look: 4.5 | smell: 4 | taste: 4.5 | feel: 4.25 | overall: 4.25

Photo of WickedBeer
3.95/5  rDev -3.2%
look: 3.75 | smell: 4.25 | taste: 4 | feel: 3.5 | overall: 3.75

Photo of notchucknorris
3.43/5  rDev -15.9%
look: 4 | smell: 3.5 | taste: 3.25 | feel: 3.5 | overall: 3.5

Photo of Sammy
3.96/5  rDev -2.9%
look: 3.75 | smell: 4 | taste: 4 | feel: 3.75 | overall: 4

Photo of rodbeermunch
4.03/5  rDev -1.2%
look: 4.25 | smell: 3.75 | taste: 4.25 | feel: 3.75 | overall: 4

Hits that peach color somewhere in between orange and yellow with a half inch of white head on it, this looks like a pretty beer, something New Belgium has never had a problem with in my experience.

Aroma hit with faint peach, nice, but mellow, not quite understated, but far from a peach bomb.

Relatively lower level of sourness, like around a 3.5/4 on a 10 scale, allows for more peach to come through. The taste is definitely good, but you can think of saying just give me more of what it is would make it even better. Wonder if this was blended with a percentage of non sour beer. Dry, at times I wondered if there was some brett to it. The price and availability are decent when it comes around, so I have made it a repeat purchase, but its not as good as le terroir.

 780 characters

Photo of ConradKenney
4/5  rDev -2%
look: 4 | smell: 4 | taste: 4 | feel: 4 | overall: 4

Photo of PBRmeasap1980
4.09/5  rDev +0.2%
look: 4 | smell: 3.75 | taste: 4.25 | feel: 4 | overall: 4.25

Photo of chrismattlin
3.97/5  rDev -2.7%
look: 4.25 | smell: 4 | taste: 3.75 | feel: 4.5 | overall: 4

Photo of andrenaline
4.07/5  rDev -0.2%
look: 4.25 | smell: 4 | taste: 4 | feel: 4 | overall: 4.25

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)

 3,639 characters

Photo of GreesyFizeek
4.43/5  rDev +8.6%
look: 4.5 | smell: 4.5 | taste: 4.25 | feel: 4.75 | overall: 4.5

Bottle purchased at Stateline Liquors in Elkton, MD.

This one pours a basically clear vivid orange, with a small amount of head, very little, and just a little bit of lacing.

Smells like peaches and cream- almost- there's a good amount of refined peach, some oak, and vanilla, with just a hint of sourness on the nose.

This is a very interesting. The bottle says something like this is a sour ale for people who don't like sours- I could see that, for sure. The sourness is very mild, and integrated very well into the rest of the flavor profile. There really is a great amount of oak and creamy vanilla here, it's really quite wonderful to get this level of those flavors in a sour. It's got a definite sweetness to it from the peaches, more so than a sourness from the peaches, which is interesting. It says it's made with a blend of beers, including a three year old wild beer- I'm guessing that's where the sourness comes from, though mild, and the strong golden lager adds sweetness and body.

It does have a good body, rich, and surprisingly creamy for an AWA, with a moderate level of carbonation.

A pretty fascinating and tasty beer here. I really enjoyed it.

 1,171 characters

Photo of Moose90
3.88/5  rDev -4.9%
look: 3.75 | smell: 3.75 | taste: 4 | feel: 4 | overall: 3.75

Served On-Tap

A — Pours a mostly clear and vivid orange hue into the glass, no real formation of a head, but there are some off-white foamy bubbles that form on-top and leave some light hints of lacing behind.

S — Smell is light for the most part, there are notes of toasted oak and peach fuzz in there though, just muted and hidden behind a semi-sweet malt profile.

T — Light again, notes of peach, white oak, and vanilla intermingle on top of a chewy malt base.

M — Light-Medium bodied, easy drinking, little bit of a sweet lingering finish.

O — Good overall, not the most developed, but the flavors are all subtly there.

 643 characters

Photo of cletusdog
4.09/5  rDev +0.2%
look: 4.5 | smell: 4.25 | taste: 4 | feel: 4 | overall: 4

Photo of Knobs303
4/5  rDev -2%
look: 4 | smell: 4 | taste: 4 | feel: 4 | overall: 4

Photo of phattman073
3.75/5  rDev -8.1%
look: 3.75 | smell: 3.75 | taste: 3.75 | feel: 3.75 | overall: 3.75

Photo of royalewithcheech
3.88/5  rDev -4.9%
look: 4 | smell: 4 | taste: 3.75 | feel: 3.75 | overall: 4

Photo of sharpski
4/5  rDev -2%
look: 4 | smell: 4 | taste: 4 | feel: 4 | overall: 4

Photo of RBuckley73
3.94/5  rDev -3.4%
look: 4 | smell: 3.75 | taste: 4 | feel: 4 | overall: 4

Photo of seangibbs60
4.22/5  rDev +3.4%
look: 4.5 | smell: 4.25 | taste: 4.25 | feel: 4.25 | overall: 4

Photo of mendvicdog
3.74/5  rDev -8.3%
look: 3.5 | smell: 3.75 | taste: 3.75 | feel: 3.75 | overall: 3.75

Photo of tclipse
3.75/5  rDev -8.1%
look: 3.75 | smell: 3.75 | taste: 3.75 | feel: 3.75 | overall: 3.75

Photo of theranko
4.3/5  rDev +5.4%
look: 4 | smell: 4 | taste: 4.5 | feel: 4 | overall: 4.5

Photo of swanfungus
4.09/5  rDev +0.2%
look: 3.75 | smell: 4 | taste: 4.25 | feel: 4 | overall: 4

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