Lips Of Faith - Clutch Collabeeration | New Belgium Brewing

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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

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Reviews: 247 | Ratings: 603
Photo of Onibubba
3.65/5  rDev -1.1%
look: 3.5 | smell: 3.5 | taste: 3.5 | feel: 4 | overall: 4

Black pour, dissappointly short lived dark (but not dark enough) mocha head. Not much for lacing or for revitalizing the head with a swirl. Aroma is slight roastiness and chocolate. Taste is a sweet stout. No hops or bitterness, no coffee notes, and sadly, no sourness (This is listed on the bottle as being a "dark sour" by the way). I was hoping this was going to be along the lines of the JP Madrugada Obscura, but it is not.

If this is a blend that includes a touch of La Folie, it really does not assert itself. Mouthfeel was a bit thin, but still quite smooth. No carbonation evident making for easy drinking. Alcohol is well hidden too. All in all, this is a nice stout for those who are looking for something sweeter, but not as chocolatey as a Young's or a Rogue. But if you are expecting any hint of sour at all, you will not find it here.

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Photo of bens0n
4.19/5  rDev +13.6%
look: 5 | smell: 3.5 | taste: 4.5 | feel: 4.5 | overall: 4

This beer pours a true opaque black with a nice amount of creamy tan head that leaves tons of lacing on the glass. No light shines through this at all.

On the nose there is not much going on, doesn't really have a chocolately or sweet smell, just some mild, subdued malts.

Flavor wise I think the 'dark sour ale' was spot on. Its alot like a stout but instead of finishing on the bitter side its slightly sour. There is a slight unsweetened chocolate note that comes out as the beer warms up.

This beer is on the thick side and I would call it slick and slightly creamy. Its not sticky or viscous it has a certain thickness to it, but it still feels slick going down. I didn't know what to expect before trying this beer out but I was pleasantly surprised with what was in the bottle. Its a really solid stout with a twist.

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Photo of dpnelson1978
3.82/5  rDev +3.5%
look: 3.5 | smell: 4 | taste: 4 | feel: 3.5 | overall: 3.5

22 oz. bottle into glass tulip.

A: Opaque deep brown body topped with a small cream tan head that quickly dissipates leaving a thin bubbly cover and light lacing.

S: Very light sour aroma that comes off as cherries. Sour aromas take a back seat to sweet chocolate and coffee notes.

T: Again very lightly sour up front giving way to a more pronounced chocolate and coffee character throughout and finishing tart. Interesting experience.

M: Light to medium body with heavy carbonation. Slick, but finishes with a carbonic bite and light astringency.

O: Interesting beer, and a good price point. This seems like a great candidate for being enhanced by food. Goes down easy, but the flavors clash a bit too much on their own.

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Photo of jnn4v
3.8/5  rDev +3%
look: 4 | smell: 4 | taste: 4 | feel: 3 | overall: 3.5

A: Very dark brown, bordering on black. When held to light, the edges were a medium brown, but it's otherwise opaque. Small amount of light tan head.

S: Chocolate, coffee, coffee grinds. sour apple. Not much else there. Hints of molassess and some possibly chocolate milk sweetness, but the drier, roastier scents dominate.

T: The first sip was just plain normal coffee imperial stout (roastiness, coffee, cocoa powder, molasses, etc.) However, my second sip was very sour - somewhere between sour apple and sour milk. Definitely leaning more toward champagne, gueze, sparkling cider and sour apple, though.

M: A bit thin for any form of stout, but definitely much too thin for an imperial stout. Carbonation seems slightly higher than average for the style, but not overcarbonated.

O: Not bad. The taste started as below average, but it's grown on me as I adjusted to it and as it warmed. Mouthfeel is the only thing really holding this back.

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Photo of UTCengOwl
3.09/5  rDev -16.3%
look: 2 | smell: 3 | taste: 3 | feel: 4.5 | overall: 3

I fear I may have popped this open a bit too cold. I love NB sour beers, so when I saw this, I had to pick it up. I think this misses the mark... and I'm not 100% sure what they were going for here. The beer isn't very stout and the beer isn't very sour. There's noting interesting in the blend either. You'd think that a beer like this would never err on the side of too boring, but this manages to do it. Strange. Served from a 22 oz. bomber into a Maudite snifter.

The beer is a blackened brown with almost no head. The lack of carbonation and head really detracts from the looks of the beer. This just doesn't have what I want.

The beer doesn't have a potent nose. There's a dirty and chalky element that comes from the stout. Not much along the claimed chocolate lines. There's a nondescript sweetness back there, but it's just not coming forth. Maybe I popped this too cols.

The taste is somewhat better. The stout portion is just too smooth. I want more bite. I want more black. I want more bitter. I get none of this. There's a hint of the beautiful NB Love in the background. I want more. This beer is a solid idea, but it keeps me wanting more. Thankfully, since it's well made, the beer is smooth and drinkable. There's not a strong booze presence. It's going down pretty quickly. However, the interest just isn't there. Maybe it reminds me of 1554 in that manner.

This beer let me down, but I'm not dreading finishing it. With the NB Love base, they surely could have done a lot more. Oh, well.

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Photo of GrumpyGas
3.69/5  rDev 0%
look: 3.75 | smell: 3.5 | taste: 3.75 | feel: 3.75 | overall: 3.75

12oz draft pour into a snifter is very deep dark brown, mostly black and opaque with virtually no head, but a slight tan edge ring.
Aroma is sour and chocolate.
Flavor is the same with a solid dark fruit backbone including grapes. There is absolutely no booze heat nor flavor. The 9.5% abv is well hidden.
Mouthfeel is a little thin and it finishes oil-y.

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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

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Photo of pdoran10
3.46/5  rDev -6.2%
look: 4.5 | smell: 3.5 | taste: 3 | feel: 4.5 | overall: 3.5

Lips of Faith Clutch pours a jet black color into a snifter with a finger of tan head that has some staying power and leaves nice lacing.

The smell is earthy chocolate and singed bread with a slight acetone character.

I get a smooth Hershey bar chocolate flavor up front that gives way to some tart cherry flavor. The finish is dry and roasty with sweet bread and the slightly tart cherries lingering. Not really as sour I was expecting based on New Belgium's description.

The mouthfeel on this beer is pretty incredible. Creamy yet dry with moderate to high carbonation.

Overall the flavors in this beer are just a bit of a miss for me. The sour aspect seems like a bit of an afterthought and doesn't add to the beer for me. Still an interesting well made beer.

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Photo of AlCzerik
3.45/5  rDev -6.5%
look: 4 | smell: 4 | taste: 3 | feel: 3.5 | overall: 3.5

Came highly recommended... But I wasnt that impressed. Poured extremely dark almost black. The finish leaves much to be desired, in my opinion. But I did enjoy this beer. I just feel that it would have been better if it had just remained a stout instead of adding the sour ale. But it is definitely worth a try.

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Photo of TheWhiskerReview
2.49/5  rDev -32.5%
look: 3 | smell: 4 | taste: 2 | feel: 1.5 | overall: 2

Pours black with a 2-finger tan head. Reduces very quickly to nothing. Lacing is minimal too.

Such a teaser the nose- complex and swirling with sweet notes of cocoa powder, toffee, freshly ground coffee, raisin, prune, brown sugar, peach and apricot. It really keeps you unprepared for the trainwreck that is the palate. Hops are minimal, almost nonexistent. Even the sourness is hidden on the nose.

Now the palate. I guess with most of the last few LOF brews being such winners, it was only a matter of time before they unleashed a bottle of vomit. The brew is medium bodied (seems way to light to be called a stout, sour black ale maybe?) with a low carbonation, a mild and poorly integrated sourness, and a bigtime cloying sweetness upfront- the unfortunate result of the beer's sweet chocolate flavors clashing head on with the brown sugary fruitiness. The drier finish could have been a saving grace had it not been paired with a really gross sour character (think acid reflux) and a weird peach pit-like bitterness. Makes my stomach lurch just typing out my notes here.

Anyways. Like I said, the nose is nice, but it really ends there. This beer is just all sorts of confused- seems too light to be called a stout, the sourness doesn't fit at all plus it tastes like puke. I like LOF because they're weird yet solid and very approachable. I think this one became way too sweet in its approachability. Just give me another bottle of the Kick please.

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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.

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Photo of quirkzoo
4.17/5  rDev +13%
look: 3.5 | smell: 4 | taste: 4.5 | feel: 4 | overall: 4

On tap, pours a nice deep dark body with an off-white head. Nose is a balance of roasted malts and tart fruits, sour cherry aroma dominates. On the palate it is a very nice balance of dark roasted malts, tart cherries and just a touch of funk. The mouthfeel was smooth, but not excessively so, and I definitely did not think it was 9.5%. Overall this is a nice gateway beer for those that want to get into sours and funk. It has some of those elements but they are not overpowering, just in balance with the rest of the brew.

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Photo of jcartamdg
3.18/5  rDev -13.8%
look: 4 | smell: 3.5 | taste: 3 | feel: 3 | overall: 3

Pours a pitch black color with a two finger head with crazy lacing into my bruery tulip. Aroma of smoky malts and coffee with a hint of infection. Taste follows the nose, slightly tart and very sugary. Smoked malts are there but the sweetness overpowers. This is not an easy beer to drink, it's under attenuated and not a great beer, I'm glad I tried this but I will never seek out this beer again.

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Photo of jslot38
3.31/5  rDev -10.3%
look: 4.5 | smell: 3.5 | taste: 3 | feel: 3 | overall: 3.5

Wasn't expecting a sour stout with 20 something reviews to make it to DC when New Belgium hit the market out here. Being a collaboration with Clutch it makes more sense though.

Poured from a 22oz bomber to a Rodenbach glass.

Appearance: Looks alone, this is nice - dark but not as think and luminous as an imperial stout. Has a light beige head - just under a finger think that is going no where. Very good lacing.

Aroma: Roasted aroma, some chocolate, classic stout aroma with a touch of dark fruit - raisins, plums etc...

Taste: A bit of tart sour flavor, relatively clean (no funk) mixes with the roasted coffee and chocolate, but not well. I feel like one flavor needs to stand out more, and be complemented by the other to work. Instead the flavors seem to compete.

Mouthfeel: Light carbonation, like a stout, which feels odd as sour beers usually have a more lively carbonation. Doesn't take too much away from the beer though.

Overall: One heck of a good looking beer, that unfortunately misses the mark. Stouts and sours are tough to mix, this is a good attempt and has some nice qualities. Still pretty drinkable considering the unique flavor combo and high ABV.

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Photo of Ungertaker
3.47/5  rDev -6%
look: 3 | smell: 3.5 | taste: 3.5 | feel: 3.5 | overall: 3.5

Poured from a bomber into a New Belgium snifter.

A- Black with absolutely no light penetration. 1/8" almost white head that quickly fades into a thin coating on top of the liquid. Slight lacing is left on the glass.
S- Tart cherries, chocolate, earth
T- Raisins and plums on the lips, chocolate and faint malt on the tongue, dark chocolate and sour cherries at the finish.
M- Thin to medium consistency, carbonation is more present than I had expected with the lack of head.
O- I thought this was a decent beer, especially for the price. Not quite as thick as I like from a stout, though it did gain a little as it warmed up. Not overly sour. I liked the way that most of the tartness hit at the end, allowing for the other flavors to develop beforehand. I am going to buy another bottle or two so I can taste what a few months or a year will do to this brew. I think it could turn out to be an extremely good beer with age.

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Photo of gdrydenc
4.03/5  rDev +9.2%
look: 4.5 | smell: 4 | taste: 4 | feel: 4 | overall: 4

A - dark with hints of red and brown

S - sour with a bit of medium brown malts

T - sour is most prominent here. The malts are a bit in the finish, but for the most part the sourness kicks. Great combo

M - good carbonation, small bubbles that make the sourness pop.

Overall, this is a cool beer. I like the sourness of the beer combined with the slight brown malts. Cool beer.

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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.

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Photo of Meerkey
3.95/5  rDev +7%
look: 4 | smell: 4 | taste: 4 | feel: 3.5 | overall: 4

A: Lots of pitted, mocha head. Impenetrable black.

S: Sour yeast, a little fruit, and chocolate.

T: Still pretty sour, but not as sour as I remember. Sour and chocolately and coffee.

M: Smooth and heavy. Nice.

O: A good beer. Significantly less sour than the last bottle. Maybe it needs to warm up? Worth a try.

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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.

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Photo of Chieftog
3.42/5  rDev -7.3%
look: 4.75 | smell: 4 | taste: 2.75 | feel: 3.75 | overall: 3.5

Was really looking forward to New Belgium's response to Tart of Darkness. I'm not a fan of most stouts but do enjoy a sour Stout.

This one starts out as a really beautiful poor with a super creamy head.

The smell has a lot of chocolate and coffee to it but there's a little bit of acidity.

The taste is, well, it's a little bit stout and a little bit sour, but more stout and sour. It is not on the tart scale that one would expect.

Overall, I enjoyed it but I like beer ... mmm, beer! That being said, I enjoyed it but probably won't return to it.

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Photo of Bierlerner
3.16/5  rDev -14.4%
look: 4.5 | smell: 3.5 | taste: 3 | feel: 3.5 | overall: 2.5

A- Looks great. Dark brown. Several shades from black. 1 finger head that stays around a minute. Not much on lacing as it goes down. Looks thick and you can see bits of sediment.

S- Smells pretty much like a stout or foreign stout. Some mild roasted malt notes, with some mild chocolate and molasses notes. No detection of anything sour. Rather light on the nose.

T- Again, follows through with the smell. All characteristics being mild. Along with some bready notes and a tinge of lemon zest. Starts off stout and finishes with just a hint of a sour note that can be missed if you're not paying attention.

M- Med-light body with low carb. Not too thin. A little creamy. Has a nice dry finish.

O- A dark sour ale without the sour. Very disappointed with this brew. Maybe more time will make it more sour, but I don't think I'll revisit this one.

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Photo of MrTopher
3.65/5  rDev -1.1%
look: 3.5 | smell: 3.5 | taste: 4 | feel: 3 | overall: 3.5

Served from a 22oz bottle into a tulip.

A – Pours a dark brown almost black, but still close. A nice brown head comes off as well, about 1-2 inches in height. Beer leaves a nice lacing as it’s consumed.

S – Dark malt is the first thing I can pick up, a little roast also. There is some chocolate and maybe dark fruit, but it’s faint. There is some funk to the nose also.

T – Starts out as a pretty thin stout, with some coffee notes and a little chocolate, some sweet malt also. There is a mild tartness, but it’s very subtle but still present, but there is some funk!

M – Medium but closer on the side of thin, carbonation is decent. Good creaminess.

O – This has something that could be great, and I think 6 months to a year of aging would give it that missing link. I was left wanting a little more, but it was still something I would like to buy again and age.

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Photo of rmcnealy
3.67/5  rDev -0.5%
look: 3 | smell: 3.5 | taste: 4 | feel: 3.5 | overall: 3.5

Served chilled in a traditional pint glass.

Poured a non-translucent dark brown with a very small mocha colored head that fleeted quickly leaving just a small lace around the edge of the glass. The initial aromas are of mocha and coffee beans, caramel and roast. The taste is not overly robust, similarly to the aroma, but is rather refreshing. Not too complex but what is done simply here is done correct. A very good beer with just the right amount of finish which leaves with no ill taste. Like others, I fail to see the 'sour' in this 'dark sour ale' but nonetheless it was a good choice. Better than some of the other Lips of Faith collabs.

Found at Cardinal Liq's, Niles IL - Enjoy!

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Photo of abecall98
3.91/5  rDev +6%
look: 5 | smell: 4 | taste: 3.5 | feel: 4.5 | overall: 4

Grabbed this bottle over at Davis Beer Shoppe yesterday. 8$ for the bomber.

A - not much to say about it. It's stellar. It's how you expect a base Imperial Stout too look. Pitch black hue, tan head, about an inch of head, that laces nicely.

S - It's unique. It has hints of soured cherry, some nice roasted malt, but a lot of oak.

T - Starts off with some creamy stout flavors, mixed with slight vanilla, sour cherries, and coffee. However, there is a very large oak flavor that dominates the finish. It leaves a slight over oaked soapy flavor.

M - It's creamy. Not overly carbonated, and smooth.

O - It's a solid beer. I could do without the huge oak flavor, and could use a little more sour notes, but for what it is, and what I paid, I am very pleased with the beer.

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Photo of antlerwrestler19
3.4/5  rDev -7.9%
look: 4 | smell: 4 | taste: 3 | feel: 3 | overall: 3.5

Pours black with little to no light shining through - a caramel head of foam rises to a two finger width and fades relatively fast leaving just a creamy top and small spotty lacing hanging around. The smell is very interesting - I'm getting a lot of sweet and tart cherries mixed in with dark chocolate and a bit of caramel. The flavor is not as appealing as the aroma - it's as if the acidic sour woody flavor is doing battle with the chocole maltyness of the stout base and I can't quite get myself to enjoy the tartness left at the back of my mouth enough to rate it higher. The mouthfeel isn't as creamy and smooth as I would like and the carbonation is a bit prickly on the tongue - nothing special here. The pour and the aroma were both very satisfying but I must say I'm a little disappointed with the flavor - I was expecting some awesome liquid to completely surprise my palate in a good way but instead it was just kinda, for lack of a better word, bleh. Have another bottle so we'll see how it is a ways down the road.


Edit: I will state that I thoroughly enjoy sours and stouts but this just didn't work for me in a combo.

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Lips Of Faith - Clutch Collabeeration from New Belgium Brewing
3.69 out of 5 based on 603 ratings.
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