Lips Of Faith - Clutch Collabeeration | New Belgium Brewing

246 Reviews
Read the review
Lips Of Faith - Clutch CollabeerationLips Of Faith - Clutch Collabeeration

Brewed by:
New Belgium Brewing
Colorado, United States

Style: American Wild Ale

Alcohol by volume (ABV): 9.50%

Availability: Rotating

Notes / Commercial Description:
This pleasing, two-part, potion was brewed with chocolate and black malts for a rich and roasty overtone, then fused with a dry, substratum of sour for a bold and audacious flavor. Black as night, this beer is blended at 80% stout, 20% dark sour wood beer for a collaboration that begins with a sour edge and finishes with a big, dark malt character, lingering, sweet on your palate.

Added by chumba526 on 08-06-2011

For Trade:
User Reviews
Sort by:  Recent | High | Low | Top Raters | Alström Bros
first ← prev | 1-25 | 26-50 | 51-75  | nextlast
Reviews: 246 | Ratings: 588
Photo of Never2Dark
5/5  rDev +35.5%
look: 5 | smell: 5 | taste: 5 | feel: 5 | overall: 5

An amazing beer.

It pours dark and majestic, releasing a true 'sour' aroma, tantalizing the observer. While crashing upon the palate, this beer comes on strong with a true belgian sour taste, but is then overcome by a true dark porter bitters. While this would be nice for most, the sour fights back, replacing the taste again with a finsih of sour combined artfully with the bitters of a nice sharp overly roasted malt.

Truly a delightful drinking experience. The price was right, it looked right, smelled nice, and played tricks on the palate, taking the taste from sour to bitter back to sour and finishing with a creamy 'awesome'. Well done, New Belgium. Well done.

 673 characters

Photo of drpimento
4.72/5  rDev +27.9%
look: 4 | smell: 4.5 | taste: 5 | feel: 5 | overall: 4.5

Wow, a really good curve ball beer! Poured with a fine, small to medium sized tan head that settles down to a light cover that lasts quite a while and some lace. Color is an opaque black brown. Aroma is malt, roast, cocoa, a little fruit and acid. Taste is like nose and has those qualities greatly amplified in a way that all works together very nicely. Body is excellent and carbonation perfect. Finish is like flavor and of medium length. Just a little alcohol at the very end. And in spite of the strength and big flavors this is pretty easy drinking. Session beer to get looped. Severe discipline is called for on this one.

 628 characters

Photo of Cyberkedi
4.65/5  rDev +26%
look: 5 | smell: 5 | taste: 4.5 | feel: 4.5 | overall: 4.5

Comes out of the tap a deep, warm sable with a thick, fine-bubbled tan head that leaves some good lacing. Smoky aroma has chocolate, coffee and sour apple tones. Flavor nicely mixes mocha with sour apple and has smoky, nutty, molasses and licorice notes. Full-bodied, lively texture leaves a fizzy finish with smoky and sour apple flavors.

 339 characters

Photo of LeeryLeprechaun
4.63/5  rDev +25.5%
look: 4.5 | smell: 4 | taste: 5 | feel: 5 | overall: 4.5

I have had the opportunity to have clutch on tap and bottled. This review will be of the bottled version that I had on 12/16/2011

Clutch pours a deep dark brown color that sucks your eye deep into its depths. An off white head sits nicely on the beer but quickly turns into a lave around the glass that will stick to the sides as you drink down this beer.

The aroma is a mix of roasted malts with just a hint of fresh coffee.

The taste starts off sweet and is filled with toaste, coffee, and chocolate. But not a bitter coffee or a dark chocolate, instead a very sweet and milky taste.

Overall i think that this beer is just awesome. It is a shame that it is a limited release. I was certainly expecting more of a sour flavor from the description. However, the beer is remarkably smooth and wonderful to partake.

 816 characters

Photo of ckornmannn
4.49/5  rDev +21.7%
look: 3.5 | smell: 4.5 | taste: 4.75 | feel: 4 | overall: 4.5

From a bottle into a tulip: black color. Thin lacy head. Smell is amazing and complex: cherry, toast, earthy. Taste blew me away: toasty, dark fruit and cherry, earthiness. Very complex. A bit sour but enough to strike a perfect balance in my opinion. I think if you are trying to hold this beer to a particular style you might be let down. But if you simply ask, is it good? I would say yes, one of the best so far for me. The odd amalgamation of styles works.

 472 characters

Photo of RockyTopHeel
4.47/5  rDev +21.1%
look: 4 | smell: 4.5 | taste: 4.5 | feel: 4.5 | overall: 4.5

Pours a dark cocoa-color with a short, brown head and heavy lacing on the glass.

Aroma of sour wine and roasted malts, a preview of the same flavors in the mouth. This tastes very much like a Flemish sour mixed with a lighter stout, combining vinous notes with the roasted, toasted flavors associated with darker ales. In some moments, it reminds me of a dark Belgian ale; in others, it's something nearly completely new.

Complex, well-balanced and supremely tasty. This is a keeper, New Belgium.

 499 characters

Photo of sweetwillyrolbar
4.37/5  rDev +18.4%
look: 4.5 | smell: 5 | taste: 4 | feel: 4 | overall: 4.5

This beer is aaamazing. I love Clutch, but I really don't think it's pivotal to my opinion. I'm not uber into sours, but this beer is the right amount of column A column B for me!!
Pours with a great head, that dissipates significantly, but leaves about a half inch of head. Pours just short of the opacity of your typical porter.
I get cherry, chocolate, touch of coffee and lactic acid in the nose.
Taste is sublime. Love this stuff! All NB sours I've tried are way sour... I admittedly am not a sour buff. This is, to me, the apex example of a mix between sour cherry and mocha, put super-simply. Seems oak aged, but not sure that it is, woody character. I don't know what it means for a 'sour stout' to be balanced but, till further debunked, this is the standard.
Mouthfeel is moderate, not thin but less than syrupy, carbonation is where I want it to be.
This beer was more than I wanted. Clutch, you hypnotize me again. New Belgium, there's hope for us yet.

 966 characters

Photo of ClaremontBrew
4.35/5  rDev +17.9%
look: 4 | smell: 4 | taste: 4.5 | feel: 4.5 | overall: 4.5

A - Opaque, dark brown with a fluffy tan head.

S - Mostly roasty. Not a lot of sourness coming through in the aroma.

T - Chocolately, with a subtle sourness. Very pleasant. Nice complexity.

M - Fairly silky, comparable to a typical stout.

O - A surprisingly good beer. Roasty and full-flavored like a stout, but with a subdued sourness. If you're not a big fan of sour beers, don't be afraid of this one. It's a nice complex stout with a manageable sourness.

Served into a New Belgium tulip glass at Eureka Burger, Claremont, California.

 542 characters

Photo of JimmyTango
4.35/5  rDev +17.9%
look: 4 | smell: 4 | taste: 4.5 | feel: 4.5 | overall: 4.5

Poured from a 22oz bottle into a wine glass on outside on the lawn on a beautiful Sunday afternoon with my wife.

I was super stoked on this going in to it, sounded like something I was really going to enjoy. Expected it to be less of a dark beer for some reason, and a bit more sour (sour brown instead of a stout/sour blend) but I wasn't disappointed.

A: Totally opaque, with a brown tinge. Looks like really muddy water. Head is tan, pretty big, not too spider-webbed, but leaves nice lacing. Def seeing bits of sediment suspended in the glass and fine vigorous bubbles rising from the deep.

S: Pumpernickel bread, lemon zest, faint dark chocolate, a bit of extra molasses, and faint brown roasty malts. Smells good, but I didn't really smell much in the way of "sour" besides the lemon.

T: Super good! Molasses, roasty and toasty but not forwardly so, faint background of breakfast coffee and nuts, and big lemon juice with nice balancing sourness. Mainly molasses and lemon up front with depth and balance that I really liked. The chocolate from the nose didn't come through, and no burnt flavors despite the toasted smells sand tastes. Ends a bit sweet, which I don't usually love, but it works here because of the way it plays off of the sourness.

M: My favorite part of this beer! Med bodied with very fine bubbles. Plenty of carbonation too, not crazy foamy but very there. Not dry at all, but light enough to fool into thinking that it is not 9.5%.

O: I loved it! Very unique. Not very sour all-and-all with nice depth. The sour is pleasant as hell and provides a really cool contrast to the rest of the beer. Check this one out if you get the chance, its super good. Coming at it as a stout or a sour will most likely disappoint, as I reckon it doesn't really hit either style all that well, but it is a great blend that is hard to peg down.

 1,860 characters

Photo of UCLABrewN84
4.33/5  rDev +17.3%
look: 4.5 | smell: 4 | taste: 4.5 | feel: 4 | overall: 4.5

Pours an opaque black with a 1 inch foamy dark khaki head that settles to a small cap. Nice rings of lace line the glass on the drink down. Smell is of dark roasted malt, chocolate, and a sour cherry funky aroma. Taste is of dark roasted malt, semi-sweet chocolate, slight coffee, sour fruits, and wood. A very mild roasty bitterness on the palate after each sip. A good level of carbonation with a crisp, medium bodied mouthfeel. Overall, this is a very good stout with some nice sour notes. A very well made beer. I will probably buy many more of these if I can find some.

 574 characters

Photo of 100floods
4.31/5  rDev +16.8%
look: 4.5 | smell: 3.5 | taste: 4.5 | feel: 4 | overall: 5

(Taken from my blog, for a new audience)

I've always thought it a bit odd for a brewery and a band to collaborate. Lagunitas named a series of beers after Frank Zappa albums, but that was done in celebration of the 40th anniversary of each album. And while I have heard of breweries naming beers after the spirit of certain genre's (and of course Decibel Magazine's inaugural edition of <i>Brewtal Truth</i>, in which styles of beer were compared to sub-genre's of metal), this seems new to me.

The maker's of the some of the most medicore beer in the USA has continued to surprise me with their Lips of Faith Series. How can the makers of Fat Tire simultaneous produce fine, well crafted Belgian styled beers is beyond me. Whatever it is, it's working.

While on a recent excursion to Portland, Oregon I picked up the gem at the famed Belmont Station. Lips of Faith has collaborated Maryland's Clutch on a new beer, a dark sour ale to be exact. They had me at the logo. You may be asking how does such a collaboration occur? It's not uncommon for a band to be fueled by beer, and maybe fans with a good ear for booze can detect the elixir's influence on the band. So perhaps the inverse can happen to the beer.

This beer pours a viscous black with some tan head scatters shortly after its arrival. Big notes of coffee, toffe, some caramel malts and dare I throw in chocolate, for the hell of it. There is also just a hint of wild yeast.

I haven't had many sour dark beers, not this dark, but the good ones are top notch. Allow me to add Clutch (the beer) to this exclusive group. This drinks like a stout and a sour. Dry start, nice smooth sour finish. Some subtle wood notes in the middle. Towards the end the sour notes begin to wash over what little stout flavors survive. I suppose I could describe the this beer as a battle between bass and treble, in which J.P. (the band's drummer) on the skins comes out the victor. There's some sweet notes that linger, but the wood and the sour seem to really dominate this palate. No complaints, though. The bitterness of the hops and chocolate notes seem to really help carry the sour flavors, which are dominant, but not overpowering. After letting this beer sit a bit the roasted malts make themselves known, but still cannot compete.

I don't know how they do it, but the guys at New Belgian Brewing know how to make a good sour. And not just a good sour, an accessible sour. Trying to match a beer to a band's personality is definitely challenging, if not interesting task, but most of all a fun one. I'd be interesting in seeing how the Minutemen get translated into beer.

 2,641 characters

Photo of MattyG85
4.3/5  rDev +16.5%
look: 4 | smell: 4 | taste: 4.5 | feel: 4 | overall: 4.5

Poured from 22 oz. bottle into a Surly Darkness Chalice glass while listening to Clutch.

Appearance: Pours dark and black with only a slight hint of brownish red on the edges. Decent two fingers of tan head that fade into a thin ring on the edges of the glass. Moderate amount of lacing.

Smell: Moderately tart and sour dark cherries with some wood, brett, and a light hint of vinegar. Big presence of dark roasted malts with good hints of dark chocolate and coffee beans. Quite an interesting combination.

Taste: A very interesting and tasty brew. It literally tastes like a imperial stout mixed with a wild ale. The sour cherries and woody/bretty characteristics are quite noticeable but are not as strong as a normal wild ale. The dark elements kind of overshadow it, but in a good way. Big flavor of dark roasted malts with hints of chocolate and coffee. Pretty good.

Mouthfeel: Medium to heavy body with a moderate level of carbonation. Creamy and very smooth. No noticeable alcohol heat. Finishes somewhat dry.

Overall: A pretty wild and interesting take on a wild ale. The dark flavors blend pretty well with the sourness. I love the creativity here.

 1,167 characters

Photo of chumba526
4.27/5  rDev +15.7%
look: 3.5 | smell: 4 | taste: 4.5 | feel: 4 | overall: 4.5

This beer is a sour stout that is composed of 80% New Belgium base beer and 20 % Sour beer. It has 15 IBUs.

The beer appears midnight black with a brown colored head.

It smells strongly of roasted smoky malts, dark chocolate and tart cherries.

It tastes initially of a smooth chocolate like stout. Soon however a tart cherry flavor takes over. There are hints of dark chocolate, coffee, and tart cherries to this beer. For how high it is in alcohol it is very smooth, light and refreshing. This could be a dangerous beer.

The beer has a thin mouthfeel with moderate low carbonation.

Overall a really good a unique sour stout. One of the best beers I have tried from NB. I am really impressed by how easy the beer is to drink.

 741 characters

Photo of ibbjamin
4.26/5  rDev +15.4%
look: 5 | smell: 4 | taste: 4 | feel: 5 | overall: 4.5

Paid $9.99 for a bomber from Bobby's Liquor in San Jose, CA. Pour into my Rodenbach tulip to review.

Yields a large, light brown, loosely packed head. Excellent quarter inch of retention. Beer is black in color. Thick lacing.

Aroma is quite vinous, with red grape and raisin balanced with a nice dose of malts in the background.

Taste is sour meets stout. Roasted malts, dark chocolate, sour cherry, red grape, raisin and apple. I would never have guessed this to be 9.5%; it seems in the 6% range to drink.

Mouthfeel is spot on with nice levels of carbonation and a dry finish. Medium body and very easy going down.

I think this beer is underrated and am quite impressed with it. One of New Belgium's best offerings in my opinion and can compete with Rodenbach. I have had a few bottles already and will certainly be buying again. I hope they continue producing it!

 871 characters

Photo of Gatch
4.26/5  rDev +15.4%
look: 4.5 | smell: 3.5 | taste: 4.5 | feel: 4.5 | overall: 4.5

On-tap at Papago Brewing in Scottsdale, AZ.

A: Dark, ruby red with a frothy, light brown head. Some good lace, little head retention, but solid legs. Nice looking beer. Looks like a stout after the pour.

S: Some funky fruit and lightly roasted malt. Subtle but inviting.

T: Incredible battle of flavors between dark and roasty to sweet and fruity. Freak dark chocolate, smoky flavors up front from the roasted malt but also wonderful sugary, creamy sweetness in the finish. I'm guessing that's from the hops or wild yeast? I'm happy to call this a wild stout. An lo and behold, according to the NB website this beer is a blend of 80% stout and 20% dark sour wood beer.

M: Great, crisp sizzle from the light carbonation. Tons of flavor fills the mouth. A roasty, lactose-like sweetness lingers on the palate. Very smooth once it warms up.

O: Huge fan of this beer. It really intrigues me. Maybe because it's a dark, delicious "wild ale." An awesome beer from New Belgium!

 975 characters

Photo of JCellars
4.25/5  rDev +15.2%
look: 4.5 | smell: 4.5 | taste: 4 | feel: 4 | overall: 4.5

Served from 22oz. btl at BiN2860 wine & beer shop. Pours thick and onyx dark, with a beautiful sandy, tan head. Good retention and lacing.

Hints of smoked meats and campfire (almost rauchbier-like) give way quickly to rich roast malt, cocoa powder, sour cherry and blackberry fruits. Nicely layered aroma.

The sour cherry promised on the nose comes through strongly, supported by gorgeous coffee and chocolate notes, with just a hint of teriyaki beef jerky(?). Surprisingly soft, smooth mouthfeel. I think I could've had just a minute more depth, but it still definitely works for me.

I was expecting a slightly richer style, but the beer is very nicely balanced with the malt and sour flavors playing nicely together.

 721 characters

Photo of DovaliHops
4.25/5  rDev +15.2%
look: 4 | smell: 4 | taste: 4.5 | feel: 4.5 | overall: 4

Pours a pitch black with a medium, light tan head that diminishes slowly. Scent is immediately tart with roasted malt aromas and hints of wood and vanilla. A bit of chocolate and coffee. Taste is not nearly as sour as I was expecting. In fact, not sour at all. Just mildly tart. First, I get sweet chocolate, followed by a mild tart flavor that compliments the milk chocolate and vanilla quite well. This stout balances roasted flavors, tart flavors, and sweet flavors extremely well. A very well balanced beer. Mouthfeel is full bodied and creamy. Drinkability is very high. Overall, I know a ton of people were wanting this to be more sour (I am one of those people)... but it turned out to be a well-balanced surprise of a beer. Love it!

 740 characters

Photo of UpToMeBeer
4.24/5  rDev +14.9%
look: 4 | smell: 5 | taste: 4 | feel: 4 | overall: 4

It's great to see New Belgium going all-out on a big, creative beer. This one was wonderful.
A- Disclaimer: I was in a dimly lit bar in downtown Fort Collins for this. Poured very dark with what seemed to be a one-finger tan head.

S-The most impressive aspect of this beer. Roasted malt scent. Something is giving it a sweet, almost fruity edge to the coffee... Maybe toffee in there? Whatever it is, it's complex and wonderful.

T-Nice balance of a stout (I know there's a trace of that in here) with subtle sour characteristics: Seems to be cherry. Very nice finish. No dryness or overpowering sour.

M- Rather medium to semi-full feel. I would like to age this and see if it gets even fuller. Also, it warms nicely.

O- As a lover of stouts and sours, this beer was pretty ideal for me. Reminiscent of O'Dell's Avant Peche Porter.

 837 characters

Photo of dfillius
4.23/5  rDev +14.6%
look: 4 | smell: 3.5 | taste: 4.5 | feel: 4.5 | overall: 4.5

Poured into a pint glass
A: Moderate pour yields 3/4 finger tan head with fair retention. Near opaque dark brown/black.
S: Subdued, slight cherry, milk stout, coffee, slight Belgian twang. Too subdued, more aroma would be nice.
T: Coffee, roasty malt, sour twinge, cherry. One of the best tasting sour/cherry stouts I've had. Similar to Short's Black cherry Porter. Full flavored and complimentary dark chocolate and tart lemon juice. I like this!
M: Dry, chewy, tart.
O: Glad to drink a bomber solo. Very tasty. I would buy this again. It doesn't blow me away, but if I didn't have Black Cherry Porter around, my cravings would be satisfied by this.

 650 characters

Photo of larryi86
4.23/5  rDev +14.6%
look: 4.5 | smell: 4 | taste: 4.5 | feel: 4 | overall: 4

22 oz bottle poured into a snifter

A- Black with a one fine tan head, nice lacing.

S- Coffee, roasted malts, chocolate, hint of sourness. Nice aroma, wish it was stronger.

T- Dark chocolate, roasted malts up front with a nice sour/tart cherry/fruit finish, hint of coffee through out. I find that this is not that sour, but the sourness it has balances and works well with the stout.

M- Smooth, medium body.

O- I personally find this to be great. I find the sourness to be just right for this beer. Alcohol is very well hidden. I find the it is worth the price and I can't wait to pick up more!

 600 characters

Photo of bigaltemple
4.23/5  rDev +14.6%
look: 4.5 | smell: 4 | taste: 4.5 | feel: 4 | overall: 4

Deep, dark brown, almost black brew fills my New Belgium globe. Thick caramel-colored head sits atop. This settles to a pancake batter cap providing some good lacing. Smells of roasted dark malts with hints of coffee. A gentle swirl brings out some chocolate and sour fruit/cherries.

Taste is at first roasted sweetness that immediately turns to bitter chocolate and dark coffee. Some of the fruit plays in the background giving the tongue plenty to think about. A sour creaminess coats the palate.

Quite enjoyed this brew, which is good considering how excited I was for it to hit shelves. The Lips of Faith Series comes through again. Kind of interested to see any development or changes in this one after giving it some time.

For the record, my favorite Clutch songs are Animal Farm and The Soapmakers

 807 characters

Photo of mactrail
4.22/5  rDev +14.4%
look: 3.5 | smell: 4 | taste: 4.5 | feel: 3.5 | overall: 4.5

Sweet cherries and malt with a sharp touch. I don't get the coffee and chocolate, nor much of a sour flavor either. Rather acidic but more like tart fruit than any bacterial sour flavor. Medium body with modest carbonation. Sweet on the lips. A great flavorful beer that seems to defy categorization. Light aroma of roast barley with some cocoa nose.

This seems to be a bewilderment of styles and expectations but I think it's great and my favorite of the Lips of Faith series. On tap at Pizza Port in Ocean Beach.

 515 characters

Photo of SamN
4.22/5  rDev +14.4%
look: 4 | smell: 4.5 | taste: 4 | feel: 4 | overall: 4.5

Very dark looker, almost stout like. Rich creamy head, pitch black body. Excellent head for a 9.5% beer. Nose had excellent coffe, milk chocolate aromas and roasted barley all tinged with a slighty tart note of underipe raspberries, cherries or other berry fruit. Vinegar, too. Unique smell, quite nice, mercirfully not overpoweringly sour or tart, nicely tinged with a faint sour note but balanced with rich dark malts. Taste is excellent; starts with heavy toasted black malts but almost immediately moves to a tart fruitiness blened with the dark malts. This beer has a unique double taste; on top is the tart sournes but just bubbling underneath are porter like tastes. A most unique brew, easy to drink and admire for it's complexity and contrasting flavors. Mouthfeel is smooth and creamy, medium bodied and silken textured.

Overall, a most unique brew, one best shred with friends and admired for NB ability to keep it's Lips of Faith series pushing the boundaires and defying style categorizations. Another great brew for their LOF lineup.

 1,049 characters

Photo of Metalmonk
4.21/5  rDev +14.1%
look: 4.5 | smell: 3.5 | taste: 4.5 | feel: 4 | overall: 4.5

Right off the bat, this one looks a bit different than a typical sour, being opaque black of liquid and tan of head. And the head is a super-creamy, long-lasting sort of thing. Love the appearance, definitely.

Roasty smelling, very porter-like. Mineral and smoke in there as well.

Taste-wise, this is most definitely a unique offering, one that seems to only partly intersect with a true sour. That kind of twisted fruitiness is present, but its dominant flavors are chocolate, raisin, fig, coffee and smoke. A hint of wood creeps around in the background. For a 9-percenter, didn't find any alcohol in its character. Still thinking "porter," but an adulterated one.

Tingly, tickling carbonation, a bit soft, a little thin, although it has some stick to it. Smooths out and becomes really creamy with warming, which helps provide a bit more overall depth.

This beer is not for people overly hung up on style definitions and boundaries. It breaks a mold and sets its own course, quite like the band it's named after. Definitely a super-enjoyable beer, my favorite so far from the Lips of Faith series, and one I look forward to having again.

 1,145 characters

Photo of jsprain1
4.21/5  rDev +14.1%
look: 3 | smell: 4.5 | taste: 4.5 | feel: 3.5 | overall: 4

A- Pours essentially black, head is tan but is not very long lasting. Disappears pretty quick actually.
S- Smell is rich. Initially it's quite smokey, with a coffee aroma, and a tart dark fruit aroma.
T- Initially it seems just like a normal (albeit high quality) stout. A rich smokey, coffee flavor. There is a bit of a tobacco flavor. Suddenly, right near the finish there is a burst of what could be described as tart blackberry/cherry. Really interesting how the sourness is subdued until it pops.
M- A little light for a stout and low in carbonation, but only a bit so on both issues.
O- Really, enjoyed it. Just a touch more body and better head retention are the only negatives. Fascinating how they can make the sourness pop like they did.

 747 characters

first ← prev | 1-25 | 26-50 | 51-75  | nextlast
Lips Of Faith - Clutch Collabeeration from New Belgium Brewing
3.69 out of 5 based on 588 ratings.
  • About Us

    Your go-to website for beer (since 1996), publishers of BeerAdvocate magazine (since 2006) and hosts of world-class beer events (since 2003). Respect Beer.
  • BeerAdvocate Microbrew Invitational

    Join us June 2-3, 2017 in Boston, Mass. for beer, cider, mead, kombucha and sake from over 70 small producers.

    Learn More
  • Subscribe to BeerAdvocate Magazine

    No fake news here. Get real beer content delivered to your doorstep every month.