Tart Lychee | New Belgium Brewing

BA SCORE
88
very good
815 Ratings
THE BROS
-
no score
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Tart LycheeTart Lychee
BEER INFO

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

Style: American Wild Ale

Alcohol by volume (ABV): 7.50%

Availability: Rotating

Notes / Commercial Description:
Three year old Wild Beer blended with lychee and a touch of Ceylon cinnamon.

Added by Overlord on 07-20-2009

BEER STATS
Ratings:
815
Reviews:
221
Avg:
3.93
pDev:
10.18%
 
 
Wants:
57
Gots:
84
For Trade:
0
User Ratings & Reviews
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Ratings: 815 |  Reviews: 221
Photo of suspect
3.3/5  rDev -16%
look: 3.5 | smell: 3.5 | taste: 3 | feel: 3.5 | overall: 3.5

Poured from a 22oz bottle into a Central Waters snifter.

A: Hazy golden yellow color. Aggressive pour leads to a sticky, foamy 2 finger pure white head. Lacing is consistently spotty.

S: Nose is decent if not overwhelming. Hay, grass, lemon, orange zest, a small bit of funk lead to a pretty nice nose but I really had to go searching for it.

T: Not as "tart" as the name lead me on to be. Brings a nice balanced approach to the flavor but it's pretty underwhleming altogether as a sour.

M: Okay feel...does't make me pucker like I want my sours to do.

O: Pretty average sour. Certainly not anything to write home about.

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Photo of socon67
3.33/5  rDev -15.3%
look: 3.5 | smell: 3 | taste: 3.5 | feel: 3 | overall: 3.5

On tap at Hop Leaf in Chicago

A - Pours yellow\orange with visible carboantion and a thin foam.

S - Smells of Brett and tart cherries. Is this what lychee smells like? Has a bit of a musty, funky smell.

T - Tartness is clearly there, and intense. This is a beer that puckers your mouth. Flavors of tart fruit is right there. Lemons, limes, kiwi, and sour cherry. A fruit boel in a glass.

M - Sorry, didn't find this all that drinkable. While the novelty is cool, this is a one trick pony and not as good as other wild ales I've found smoother to drink. Carbonation feels a bit heavy, like champagne.

O - Fun to try, but I wouldn't bother again.

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Photo of RickS95
3.34/5  rDev -15%
look: 2.25 | smell: 3.75 | taste: 3.5 | feel: 2.5 | overall: 3.25

Apricot colored pour, fairly clearish, and almost no head. Mostly non-descript because the head is so meager. There's no retention and what's there is quickly relegated to the perimeter. Little lace. Disappointing.

There's redemption in the nose as its bursting with smells. "Sour" and cinnamon are dominant. I'm not sure what a lychee even is, but there's something strange in there. Overall, the scent is very American Wild Ale-like.

Without knowing what lychee tastes like, I can't comment on it but there's something very unusual and sour in the taste. My whole mouth puckers and I can't really pick up anything individually. The taste isn't bad, it's just hard to define and the sour is fairly overpowering.

Very kriek-ish. Sour and tart ruined my palate. My pucker taste buds worked overtime to down the bottle. Very crisp and exceptionally dry. The pucker factor is high. Despite the crisp, dry finish, my mouth won't stop watering.

Certainly an acquired taste. I can't express the complexity of this. There's so much flavor, but it's hard to differentiate one ingredient from another because of the sourness. It's not smooth and it doesn't go down easy. However, your palate is certainly cleansed after each sip.

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Photo of SpeedwayJim
3.39/5  rDev -13.7%
look: 2 | smell: 3 | taste: 3.5 | feel: 4.5 | overall: 3.5

22oz bomber into a Cantillon flute. Shared with schen9303.

.5 finger foamy white head with moderate retention. Beer is a slightly cloudy pale pear color. Lacing is patchy and thick with no cling. A bit poor on all fronts for the style.

Nose is slightly sweet with some yeast and cane sugar notes. Some very mellow tartness (which I can't attribute to anything distinct) lingers in the back. Very very mellow.

Opens sweet with a spiciness upfront. A flavor that I'm guessing is lychee sweetness in the middle. Brett in the back that's overpowered by the sweetness. Some cinnamon notes in the end coupled with a brief tartness. Brett with a sweet sour aftertaste. Decent but a touch one-dimensional. The fruit is barely noticeable.

Light bodied with moderate to high carbonation. Prickly and effervescent in the mouth and slick and messy in the finish. Lingering aftertaste. Really refreshing and easy drinking.

Lychee fruit is one of my favorites so naturally, I was very excited when this beer first got made. Sadly, the fruit flavors are a bit lost in this beer and all that's left is a big, sweet brew with a slight hint of tartness at the beginning and end. Decent but I'm a bit disappointed since my expectations were rather high.

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Photo of ThisWangsChung
3.4/5  rDev -13.5%
look: 3 | smell: 3 | taste: 3.5 | feel: 4 | overall: 3.5

About 3 oz. out of 22 oz. poured into a tasting snifter.

A: Pours a cloudy golden color. Not much head, which isn't surprising given the serving size, but the retention of what head there is isn't very impressive.

S: Quite a bit of cinnamon in general, to the point where it wins out over the tropical fruit notes and mild tartness. Decent enough.

T: The flavor is more balanced. The cinnamon takes a back seat behind a more pleasant wall of light sourness and tropical fruits. Kind of sweet, but very enjoyable.

M: Drier than its initial sweet nature would indicate. The finish gradually builds a touch of tartness in conjunction with the dryness to help balance the sweetness. It's very well carbonated, as well.

O: I want more tartness, but it's still pretty damn good. A nice beer to drink in warm weather.

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Photo of falloutsnow
3.41/5  rDev -13.2%
look: 4 | smell: 3 | taste: 3.5 | feel: 3.5 | overall: 3.5

Bottle from Whole Foods in Omaha, NE
No bottled on date
Poured into a Cantillon gueuze glass

Tart lychee is a good, drinkable beer, but it is neither very tart or laden with lychee flavor, despite the name. The sourness could be amplified substantially, as could the lychee, and this would only improve the beer. As it stands, the recipe is unfortunately fairly average in both these respects, and while this could serve as a good "gateway" sour, I'm not sure that the introductory crowd would be pleased with it, either.

Pours a thin, just off-white head of small bubbles, which rapidly dissipates to a very fine cap atop the beer's body, holes appearing in the cap here and there as time passes. Lacing is fairly minimal, a few streaks that stick to the side of the glass, renewed with every swirl and sip. Body is a cloudy orange-brown (perhaps a dirty copper) color when away from light, a pale yellow exterior with orange interior when held to light. Visible carbonation streams, fairly vigorous, small in bubble size.

Aroma primarily of soured malt (put some grains in water, leave them for a few days, and you'll have this smell), with some sweet lychee in the background. Not a very complex or deep aroma, disappointing.

Front of palate picks up sweet, raspberry-like lychee fruit flavor with only a hint of tartness. Tartness increases by mid-palate, encompassing the soured malt that was present in the aroma alongside less-powerful lychee flavor and a slight breadiness. Back of palate detects some tartness along with raspberry/strawberry-type lychee influence. The Ceylon cinnamon is detectable in the close and aftertaste, and is quite enjoyable, giving this an earthy, slightly spicy close. Ceylon is more delicate than the typical Cassia cinnamon, and that delicate nature is definitely obvious in the timidness of the cinnamon here: it's noticeable, but not abundantly noticeable. Aftertaste is of bready malt, subtle Cassia cinnamon, and light residual tartness. While I enjoyed the flavors, none of them were particularly bold or astounding; this could have used more sour character and more lychee, while the cinnamon came across as more of an afterthought.

Beer is medium-bodied, with fairly high carbonation at first, which then subsides and leaves the beer feeling fairly smooth on the palate. Finish is semi-dry, with a fair amount of stickiness around the edges of the mouth.

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Photo of WQuirk
3.42/5  rDev -13%
look: 4 | smell: 4.5 | taste: 3 | feel: 2 | overall: 3.5

I was initially attracted to the bottle of this beer, that's why i picked it up. I also am a fan of NB brewery. overall this is an interesting beer, reminds me of a cider. Don't like the after taste. Love the colour, reminds me of a summer beer. I think I've decided that oak aged beers aren't quite my favourite. Very clean and crisp in taste and in colour.

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Photo of SPThirtyThree
3.43/5  rDev -12.7%
look: 2 | smell: 4 | taste: 4 | feel: 2.5 | overall: 2.5

I was fortunate enough to be at the debut of this beer outside of the brewery and GABF...

A: The cloudiest professional-made beer I have ever encountered. Russet-colored, with virtually no head. Frankly, this beer looks like muddy, red Oklahoma lake water; although, as Eric and Lauren Salazar explained, the Lychee extract was milky and opaque, so I suppose it is justifiable.

S: Strongly sour, with sharp Bret pang, followed by pear-like scents, and some faint spiciness.

T: More sour than expected. Strong hints of pear, pomegranate, and cinnamon. The Schisandra shines through with salty and bitter flavors. Also some cinnamon hints at the finish.

M: Puckeringly sour.

D: Medium-high. The pear flavors are tasty, but the sourness limits the drinkability.

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Photo of Auracom
3.44/5  rDev -12.5%
look: 2.5 | smell: 3.5 | taste: 3.5 | feel: 3.5 | overall: 3.5

On-tap at MSCM. 12 oz. served in a snifter on September 9th, 2012.

A - Look almost exactly like The Bruery's Mother Funker. Super hazy peach coloring with absolutely no head, retention, or lacing.

S - Lychee fruit, which is softly sweet. Underneath is light spice, mango, banana, and honey baked bread.

T - Mild tartness, tangy lychee citrus, light vinegar acidity, sweet almost papaya like fruit flavor.

M - Light body, light to moderate carbonation, semi-dry finish.

D - The tanginess of this is unique and would make me revisit. Overall quite refreshing.

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Photo of ChainGangGuy
3.46/5  rDev -12%
look: 4 | smell: 3 | taste: 3.5 | feel: 4 | overall: 3.5

22 ounce bottle - $8.48 at Sherlock's in Kennesaw, Georgia.

Appearance: Pours a well-clouded, dark yet dim golden-orange body with a short-lived, whitish head.

Smell: Soiled, soured, lightly funky wooden planks given a liberal dusting of finely-ground cinnamon powder. Fine fruity, sweet-scented notes of ingratiating lychee close out the aroma but, for me, are marred by the unnecessary presence of the cinnamon.

Taste: Sourish, woodsy notes countered with spoonfuls of white grape jelly overneath notes of pale malts and caramel-edge wheat. Well-rounded acidity. Then, there's the blasted cinnamon, which just isn't complimentary to the overall flavor. I signed up for Tart Lychee, not Tart Cinnamon Lychee. Perhaps they simply had a few sacks left over from brewing Cocoa Mole and were taking the "waste not, want not" approach to beer production. Sweet, acidic, fruity finish with some underlying sourness, and, erg, more of the cinnamon.

Mouthfeel: Medium-bodied. Medium-plus carbonation.

Overall: Hrm. I would've enjoyed this quite a bit more minus the cinnamon.

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Photo of JohnGalt1
3.47/5  rDev -11.7%
look: 3 | smell: 3.5 | taste: 3.5 | feel: 3.5 | overall: 3.5

22 out of the Lips of Faith line.. Picked up sometime late last week for I think $9ish... Seems pricey.. Poured into my slim tulip ... short lasting white head.. not much in the way of lacing.. the brew is a muddy golden..

Nose is big and fruity.. plenty of sour.. light funkiness... green apple (sort of) and underripe plum... honestly I have no idea what a Lychee smells or tastes like. Not getting any oak or cinnamon.

Flavor mirrors the aromas with an underlying tropical note that I am unfamiliar with.. cinnamon is slightly more prevalent but it is just an odd addition as the brew warms up... a bit lemony..

A little thicker than I would expect... carbonation is there, but never attempts to rearm the lacing or head.

Honestly, pretty good... I would hope for something that I associate with "funk" a whole bunch more.. not much in the way of Brett.. pedio... lactobacillus... etc.. Still is nicely sour.

3/3.5/3.5/3.5/3.5

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Photo of jmarsh123
3.47/5  rDev -11.7%
look: 3.5 | smell: 4 | taste: 3 | feel: 4 | overall: 3.5

Pours hazy light orange with a small white head dissipating nearly immediately. Little lacing.

Tart apple and lemon along with a generic berry aroma that from my limited experience with the fruit is probably lychee. A little bit of an earthy funk as well.

Lychee, apple and lemon in the flavor as well. Funkiness is a bit subdued and some oak makes it's presence. Definitely tart although perhaps a bit too much brett as it distracts from the fruit flavors a bit. Finishes dry.

Medium body and carbonation. Dry tart finish.

I enjoyed it, but as far as sours go, it's nothing special. Not sure why Bloomington never got any of this since we usually get all the other lof series, but glad I got to try it.

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Photo of ajm5108
3.47/5  rDev -11.7%
look: 4.25 | smell: 4 | taste: 3 | feel: 4 | overall: 3.25

Light golden yellow color, gentle but persistent carbonation, little head. Aroma is a nice combo of wild yeast funk and sweet fruit - not very familiar with lychee so not sure how accurate the smell is, but I get raspberry and apricot. No sign of cinnamon. Taste is ok, not super flavor and veers towards being a little flat, the tartness is dialed back which is fine but it is also missing some of that nice wild yeast flavor. There is a sweetness that is more like a dried apricot or orange, maybe pineapple, but it isn't complimented by much and isn't very expressive. Mouthfeel is fine, finishes with a musty yeast taste. It is a totally ok beer and nothing is off but nothing pops either.

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Photo of callmescraps
3.47/5  rDev -11.7%
look: 3 | smell: 3.5 | taste: 3.5 | feel: 3.5 | overall: 3.5

Enjoyed at the Goat recently. Reviewed from notes.

Appearance- I don't really have anything nice to say here. I am trying to keep the style in mind, but it still didn't look terribly appealing. It was a light, almost apple cider color. Cloudy. Not even a hint of head, and absolutely no lacing. If this was a different style this score would be much lower.

Smell- Plenty of sour apple. Some good funk. Definitely fruits. Is this what lychee smells like? Hmmm, I don't have a fresh one handy to compare. Smells like old apples left rotting in the box of a barn. A tad muted.

Taste- Tart, for sure. A nice sour apple, followed by some other fruits (probably the lychee again). The tartness is balanced by real sweetness. As it warms it gets sticky-sweet. A lot of pear as well. Almost cloying at the end. Want some more funkiness.

Mouthfeel- Very light carbonation. Gets a little syrupy after awhile.

Drinkability- Refreshing for a hot day if consumed nice and cold, much less so if consumed on a temperate day or indoors.

Pretty disappointed. I tried this again and came to the same conclusion. I just want the sour/funk to balance better with the sweetness and the fruits. I think it gets too syrupy and sweet, honestly.

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Photo of stereosforgeeks
3.5/5  rDev -10.9%
look: 3.5 | smell: 3.5 | taste: 3.5 | feel: 3.5 | overall: 3.5

Photo of acurtis
3.5/5  rDev -10.9%

Photo of cjgator3
3.5/5  rDev -10.9%
look: 3.5 | smell: 3.5 | taste: 3.5 | feel: 3.5 | overall: 3.5

Photo of xxcxme
3.5/5  rDev -10.9%

Photo of Phyl21ca
3.5/5  rDev -10.9%
look: 3.5 | smell: 3.5 | taste: 3.5 | feel: 3.5 | overall: 3.5

Bottle: Poured a hazy golden color ale with a medium size foamy head with light retention and minimal lacing. Aroma of sour and tart notes with light lychee notes. Taste is mostly dominated by tart and lightly sour notes with some fruity ester and light lychee taste. The cinnamon is quite subtle but kind of cut through the sour notes. Body is about average with good carbonation and no apparent alcohol. Interesting beer though not something I would like to have on a regular basis.

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Photo of XicanoBeerRun
3.5/5  rDev -10.9%
look: 3.5 | smell: 3.5 | taste: 3.5 | feel: 3.5 | overall: 3.5

Disclaimer – I have never eaten a lychee, which means I do not know what to expect from this, and I have no point of reference regarding whether or not the beer tastes like lychee.

This was a cloudy yellow. When I first poured it into a glass, it smelled like champagne. This faded and it was slightly sweet and sour. I could taste the booze and almost a faint pine taste. It tasted fruity, but because I have never had a lychee I am not certain if it tasted like lychee. However, there was a distinct taste in there that I have never tasted in other beers, which I presume may have been lychee. I definitely picked up on the cinnamon. It is tart, but not to the extent of a good sour beer.

Other details: There was lots of sediment in the bottle. It was nicely carbonated. It is different than anything I have had, and because of that, I recommend others try it. Although this may not be my favorite beer, it challenged me. I like that. I respect this strange brew.

I’ll have another.

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Photo of Geuzedad
3.5/5  rDev -10.9%

Photo of KevSal
3.5/5  rDev -10.9%

Photo of Wmbolling
3.5/5  rDev -10.9%

Photo of Allurex
3.5/5  rDev -10.9%

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3.5/5  rDev -10.9%

Tart Lychee from New Belgium Brewing
3.93 out of 5 based on 815 ratings.
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