Hopvine Bling
Stillwater Artisanal Ales

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Sour - Berliner Weisse
4.11 | pDev: 7.79%
Stillwater Artisanal Ales
Maryland, United States
Retired (no longer brewed)
Notes: Collaboration with Hudson Valley Brewery

Dry-hopped American Berliner Weisse ale with Sauvignon Blanc grapes.
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Reviews: 16 | Ratings: 93 | Log in to view all ratings and sort
Reviews by sourlinus:
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sourlinus from Massachusetts

4.25/5  rDev +3.4%
look: 4.25 | smell: 4.25 | taste: 4.25 | feel: 4.25 | overall: 4.25

Jul 02, 2016
More User Reviews:
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woodychandler from Pennsylvania

4.04/5  rDev -1.7%
look: 3.75 | smell: 4 | taste: 4.25 | feel: 3.5 | overall: 4

Thusly CANtinuing another day on The CANQuest (tm)! I am bound & determined to get as many CANs drank, reviewed & rated as I CAN while I have the time available to me. I have a CANsiderable backlog here at Chez Woody & it inspires me to get it winnowed down.

From the CAN: "Stillwater Artisanal with Hudson Valley Brewery"; "Dry-Hopped Berliner Style Ale with Sauvignon Blanc Grapes".

During my tour of duty at NAS Alameda, CA from 1987 to 1989, my uncle was still living in S.F. & indulging his hobby as a home vintner. I helped out when I could & drank my fair share of wine, but I never caught that particular bug. I was, and remain, a beer CANficianado.

I led this one off with some in-CAN agitation since it was, at base, a wheat ale. The Crack! led to some foaming through the vent, but no worries! A collectibles dealer friend of mine recently sold me a gorgeous 0.3L Berliner Weisse goblet & so I beCAN a quick, nearly inverted, Glug. The fizzy, foamy, bone-white head rushed up & then disappeared into wisps without a trace. Color was a lightly-cloudy Straw-Yellow (SRM = > 2, < 4). Nose, while evincing the now-familiar tartness of the wheat, also had a pleasant vinousness. I would not have been able to identify the particular grape variety, but it was definitely infused with grapes of some stripe. Mouthfeel was kind of thin, but such is par for the course in this style. The taste was not as sharp as with traditional Berliner Weissbiers, but then again, I would be embarrassed to add syrup to this one, given its inclusion of grapes. Finish was dry & refreshing, as it is intended to be. Very nice.

Jun 30, 2018
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mynie from Maryland

4.35/5  rDev +5.8%
look: 4.25 | smell: 4.25 | taste: 4.5 | feel: 4.25 | overall: 4.25

On tap at the brewery. Pours like a pale yellow hazy Berliner, cloudy with a wispy head.

Smells peppery with a little white wine fruitiness that's accentuated well by the Berliner sourness.

Hops are more present in the flavor, but this is still stylistically well within the bounds of a Berliner. Grape must and tart yeast at front, peppery fruit middle, wine fruit finish.

Feb 07, 2017
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BEERchitect from Kentucky

4.06/5  rDev -1.2%
look: 4 | smell: 4.25 | taste: 4 | feel: 4 | overall: 4

Just as it seems that all potential for experimentation has been exhausted, the next reach for complexity comes in a somber, dry, and tart form; and not with overwhelming flavor. With German berlinerweiss at its core, the flavors lead with clean lactic sourness, but that's not all...

Deep within its champagne-like exuberence and its pale straw haze, the scent that's natural of berlinerweiss lends a cidery, citrusy scent, but with an overtone of sparkling white wine and cork-like must accompanies the fragrance. High on citrus, grass and tropical fruit, the dry-hop character precedes a light bready and confectioner's sweetness against the front of the tongue.

The ale quickly thwarts its sweetness and the fruit flavors pile on the middle palate. White grape, tangy orange peel, lemon, and lime trend sour and vinous. Grapes pull the tastebuds toward a dry white wine character as much as the bacteria fermentation does so toward the dry french sider side of balance. Bitter and sour to finish, its final flavors are clean and complex with citrus peel, grapeskin and wine.

Dry, clean and crisp with only a faint echo of wheat, the beer's lemon and lime sourness strips the thirst from the palate effortlessly and its grape character flows like the tannic balance of oak aged chardonnay. Its hop perfume swirls about the after-palate with light sea brine and dry burlap beckoning.

Nov 01, 2016
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intransitive from Massachusetts

2.69/5  rDev -34.5%
look: 2.5 | smell: 2.75 | taste: 2.75 | feel: 2.25 | overall: 2.75

look: nearly transparent. faint whitish-golden
smell: faint grapes
taste: not unpleasant, but also very very subtle. Is 'subtle' the right word?
feel: watery, thin
overall: i drank the entire bottle (poured into a Palm glass), but it didn't make a big impression. I typically like Stillwater's beers, so who knows... I might try this one again and give it another shot sometime, maybe.

Sep 11, 2016
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macrosmatic from Florida

4.09/5  rDev -0.5%
look: 4 | smell: 4.25 | taste: 4 | feel: 4.25 | overall: 4

Reviewed from notes. Poured from a 22 oz. bottle into an El Catador teku glass.

A: Light yellow and hazy with a finger's worth of white head that fades fairly quickly. Lots of visible carbonation bubbles.

S: Nice here – grapefruit and lemony citrus, moderate tartness, zesty and a bit sour. Light cracker malts, and Lacto tartness follows it up, with some earthy funk as well. Some tropical fruit and a touch of dank grassiness to the hops.

T: Grapefruit and tropical fruit hops and Lacto tartness. Citric acid and dry tartness. Does have a white wine dryness to the flavor I didn’t get on the nose. Light cracker malts with no pilsner quality to speak of - so I’m guessing mostly two-row malts here. It finishes with more tart fruitiness (especially lemons) and dryness with mild hop bitterness.

M: A light body, but the carbonation is a touch on the low side for a Berliner though still quite bubbly. Minimal alcohol presence, but again more noticeable than some (more traditional) Berliners.

O: Really not to style, or anything resembling the style particularly. But it was a really enjoyable beer, easy to drink and tasty. I do wish this came in cans - it would be a good beach or golf beer. This was difficult to score; I’m going to rate this as to personal preference rather than truly to style.

Jan 07, 2017
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stephens101 from Oklahoma

4.4/5  rDev +7.1%
look: 3.75 | smell: 4.25 | taste: 4.5 | feel: 4.5 | overall: 4.5

Bright orange with a spritzy white froth. Amazingly redolent with orange, lemon zest, and other slightly rotten fruit. Tastes tart and tangy with an array of light fruits, grapefruit and peel. Light and extra-dry all the way down.

This one will pucker you up more than most, so brace yourself and enjoy.

Aug 23, 2016
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mothman from Minnesota

3/5  rDev -27%
look: 3 | smell: 3 | taste: 3 | feel: 3 | overall: 3

Tons of brett. Maybe aged too long?

Nov 07, 2017
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fitzy84 from Massachusetts

4.1/5  rDev -0.2%
look: 3.75 | smell: 4.25 | taste: 4 | feel: 4.5 | overall: 4

Bought a bottle at the Beer Shop in East Longmeadow. The beer pours with a murky, straw yellow appearance and a very thin head. Aromas include a zest of lemon citrus with grassy hops. Taste followed the nose with more of that sour lemon flavoring with some grapefruit. The carbonation from the mouthfeel really compliments the taste well and makes this an extremely refreshing beer. Overall, a fantastic mouthfeel with a great aroma and taste.

Aug 15, 2016
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PhineasMcClintock from Massachusetts

3.64/5  rDev -11.4%
look: 3.75 | smell: 3.5 | taste: 3.75 | feel: 3.75 | overall: 3.5

Feb 02, 2018
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drtth from Pennsylvania

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

The lightly hazed bright golden yellow colored beer pours out into a Duvel glass with a 1 1/2” white head that begins to recede slowly, eventually leaving an irregular pattern of lots of lacing on the sides, a thin, irregular layer of foam on the surface, and a small ring around the edges of the liquid. Sipping creates scattered patches and legs of lacing, some of which cling to the sides of the glass.

The nicely balanced aromas include some white grapes, some floral tartness, a bit of bready malt, and a very light citric character.

The flavors are a bit more complex than expected from the nose. There’s some definite tartness along with the white grape/white wine character that is all backed up by a bit of citrus. There is a bit of light, bready malt sweetness and just a hint of herbal, grassy bitterness.

The mouthfeel is on the light side of medium bodied and quite smooth with the slightly tingly carbonation. The finish begins as the well balanced mixture of flavors begins to slowly fade to a long dry ending that leaves an astringent feeling in the back of the roof of the mouth and some tartness showing throughout the very long ending.

As with many Stillwater beers this is an interesting beer that has lots of complexities in the interplay of aromas and flavors. The fruity tartness is there throughout, but the rest all play a role for a bit and then change places with the others. I’m definitely enjoying this beer and would like to have this one as a summer thirst quencher. Well worth a try if you can find it.

Apr 01, 2018
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Smakawhat from Maryland

4.24/5  rDev +3.2%
look: 4 | smell: 4.25 | taste: 4.25 | feel: 4.25 | overall: 4.25

Poured from the bottle into a wheat ale glass.

Very pale and cloudy yellow lemon body, nearly white in places too. Slightly snapping head, suds and bleach white head with pin head bubbles. Settles to a half finger bubbled puck, and topped with lots of fine pinhead carbonation.

Hop forward and nice aromatics. Sweet smelling grass and sharp herbs with excellent green garden aromas. Good tartness to compliment with a nice smelling doughy and chewy malt character. Gets slightly tropical, somehow pineapple and guava is jumping out at me a bit as well.

Excellent refreshing palate. Tangy citrus and tropical exotic fruit flavors with a nice explosive pop of carbonation on first sip. Soft and chewy malt depth gets the flavors coating and rushing through real nicely. Tangy and mild tartness, with a real nice touch of hop bitterness on the finish. Slightly chalky and tongue drying, but extra sips quickly remove that feeling.

Great hop angled berliner with excellent fruit flavors and still maintaining a beer like brew.

Aug 10, 2016
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oriolesfan4 from Maryland

4.13/5  rDev +0.5%
look: 4 | smell: 4 | taste: 4.25 | feel: 4.25 | overall: 4

Jul 08, 2016
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liquorpig from Massachusetts

3.87/5  rDev -5.8%
look: 4.25 | smell: 3.5 | taste: 4 | feel: 3.75 | overall: 4

Jul 15, 2016
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GRG1313 from California

3.75/5  rDev -8.8%
look: 3.75 | smell: 3.75 | taste: 3.75 | feel: 3.75 | overall: 3.75

Jun 30, 2016
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cavedave from New York

4.51/5  rDev +9.7%
look: 4.25 | smell: 4.5 | taste: 4.5 | feel: 4.75 | overall: 4.5

Pours a light straw color with a fleeting finger of white foam. A thick ring and ample islands are surrounded by some nice lace legs.

Woww what a crazy and complex aroma. Nice rounded tart notes mingle with some sharper notes and play nicely with white wine, earth, lemon-limey-ness, and really intriguing undernotes of spicy funk and flowers. Exceptional.

Well, how great it is when a plan comes together. All the many flavors of the aroma are here, brightly presented, with earthy flavors growing to be more a major player, and the tart notes more subdued than the aroma predicted. Add a touch of grapefruit, and hints of oak. The balance of these combined with their clean presentation create beer excellence that is just amazing to taste.

Here is where the beer creates its magic. All the elements, carbonation, viscosity, body, the soft feel of the liquid, refreshing character, the clean linger, and excellent finish combine to frame the flavors and allow them to create beer majesty.

One of the finest Berliner I have tried. I can't recommend it highly enough. Brilliant and bright beauty.

Jul 03, 2016
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djrn2 from New Jersey

3.93/5  rDev -4.4%
look: 4.5 | smell: 4 | taste: 3.75 | feel: 4 | overall: 4

Jul 24, 2016
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Knapp85 from Pennsylvania

4.2/5  rDev +2.2%
look: 4 | smell: 4 | taste: 4.25 | feel: 4.5 | overall: 4.25

Jul 25, 2016
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whatname from Pennsylvania

4.29/5  rDev +4.4%
look: 4.25 | smell: 4.5 | taste: 4.25 | feel: 4 | overall: 4.25

Jul 12, 2016
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superspak from Ohio

4.2/5  rDev +2.2%
look: 4 | smell: 4 | taste: 4.5 | feel: 4 | overall: 4

22 ounce bottle into tulip glass; no bottle dating, but is a recent release. Pours lightly hazy pale golden straw color with a 2 finger fairly dense white head with good retention, that reduces t oa thin cap that lingers. Light spotty soapy lacing clings on the glass, with a moderate amount of streaming carbonation retaining the cap. Aromas with big tart lemon, lime, green apple, pear, peach, passion fruit, white wine, pepper, hay, straw, floral, grass, wheat, cracker, light musty funk, salt, slight vinegar, and yeast earthiness. Damn nice aromas with great balance and complexity of fruity/acidic yeast, white grape, and light pale malt notes; with great strength. Taste of big tart lemon, lime, green apple, pear, peach, passion fruit, white wine, pepper, hay, straw, floral, grass, wheat. cracker, light musty funk, salt, slight vinegar, and yeast earthiness. Moderate fruity/acidic tartness and yeast spiciness on the finish; with lingering notes of tart lemon, lime, green apple, pear, peach, passion fruit, white wine, pepper, hay, straw, floral, grass, and yeast earthiness on the finish for a good bit. Fantastic complexity, robustness, and balance of fruity/acidic yeast, white grape, and light pale malt flavors; with a great malt/tart/spiciness balance and zero cloying flavors after the finish. Medium carbonation and light body. with a very smooth, crisp, dry, moderately acidic, and lightly saline/grainy mouthfeel that is great. Zero warming alcohol as expected of 5%. Overall this is an outstanding Berliner weisse. All around awesome complexity, robustness, and balance of fruity/acidic yeast, white grape, and light pale malt flavors; very smooth, crisp, and refreshing to drink. This showcases a great seamless balance of both Berliner and white wine flavors. A highly enjoyable offering.

Aug 05, 2016
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socon67 from New York

4.05/5  rDev -1.5%
look: 4.25 | smell: 4.25 | taste: 4 | feel: 3.75 | overall: 4

Jul 30, 2018
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kjkinsey from Texas

4.25/5  rDev +3.4%
look: 4.25 | smell: 4.25 | taste: 4.25 | feel: 4.25 | overall: 4.25

Oct 29, 2016
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ajdemma from New York

4.4/5  rDev +7.1%
look: 4.25 | smell: 4.25 | taste: 4.5 | feel: 4.25 | overall: 4.5

Jul 13, 2016
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acurtis from New Jersey

4.2/5  rDev +2.2%
look: 4 | smell: 4.5 | taste: 4 | feel: 4.25 | overall: 4.25

Aug 12, 2016
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fmccormi from California

4.25/5  rDev +3.4%
look: 3.75 | smell: 4.25 | taste: 4.25 | feel: 4.5 | overall: 4.25

Straight pour from a 12oz can to a tall, narrow wineglass (like a Tired Hands stem, but less volume). It’s got some dating/batch information printed in black ink on the underside of the can (“Batch SWHB2-AG 12088”), but I’m not entirely sure what it means.

Appearance (3.75): This pours with a fairly aggressive, two and a half finger head of fizzy, bone white foam that sizzles away eagerly with a nice, rocky cap on top of a pale, straw yellow body with a nice, even haze. The head doesn’t leave much lacing as it dissipates, save a few, scraggly clumps around the original collar. It’s not the most beautiful sour in the world, but in terms of looks it’s above average for a Berliner.

Smell (4.25): The nose is fairly straightforward, given the components: doughy, dumpling-like malt aroma, a nice, floral tart note from the lacto fermentation, a light yogurty twang, and then some grassy, citrusy hop notes like lightly sweetened limeade with some jasmine green tea and lemon thyme blended into it. Finally, some nice, white grape juice.

Taste (4.25): Unexpectedly, the first flavors are light, white grape, honeydew, and sweet jasmine. It’s quickly followed by stridently tangy, nearly puckering sourness, buoyed by floury sourdough crust, pain de campagne and doughy dumplings. A nicely balanced mixture of lactic, citric, malic, and tannic acids cascades over the palate, evincing red grapefruit zest, macerated grape skins, pomegranate pith, and then a soft mixture of red apple and berry sweetness on the back end. As it opens, those sweeter, fruity tones (probably driven by the sauvignon blanc must mixed with a well-placed hop note) come out more, suggesting stronger berry flavors and a touch of gooseberry, along with lovely, sweeter than normal citrus zest (like caracara orange) flavors.

Mouthfeel (4.5): This is bang-on in the feels department. The body is smooth and fairly slick, seeming to be nearly medium-weight, with greater viscosity than would be expected in a light, starchy sour beer like this. Still, it finishes with a thorough dryness without being parching at any point. The carbonation washes over the palate evenly, with a half-velvety, half-tingly blanket that foams up nicely just as it washes out.

Overall (4.25): There’s a lot going on here in the sum of this beer’s many subtleties, but they come together nicely in a way that forges connections between the starchy, sour base beer and groups of flavors that suggest a more complicated recipe than is actually present. It’s only boosted and made richer by the exceptional feel and well-balanced aroma. The overall effect is to make a Berliner that doesn’t quite transcend style, but meets its full potential plus some. It’s pricey, but it’s exceptional. Highly recommended.

Dec 25, 2017
Hopvine Bling from Stillwater Artisanal Ales
Beer rating: 91 out of 100 with 93 ratings