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Lambic | Rivertown Brewing Co.

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very good
74 Reviews

Brewed by:
Rivertown Brewing Co.
Ohio, United States

Style: Lambic - Unblended

Alcohol by volume (ABV): 6.00%

Availability: Rotating

Notes / Commercial Description:
Fermented by exposing the beer to untamed yeasts and bacteria native to Rivertown Brewery, known as House Funk. This blend fermented for over a year in wine barrels.

Added by mcallister on 04-26-2011

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Reviews: 74 | Ratings: 296
Photo of womencantsail
3.68/5  rDev -7.3%
look: 4 | smell: 3.5 | taste: 3.5 | feel: 4 | overall: 4

Pours a clear golden color with a white head. A light vinegar note, but still a decent lactic character. Lots of lemon peel, straw, and a decent funkiness, though mostly just must. A touch of oak and green apple. The palate is a little dull, but not awful. Good tartness with oak, green apple, lemon, and a touch of white vinegar. Not terribly complex or funky, but still nice.

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Photo of 4DAloveofSTOUT
4.15/5  rDev +4.5%
look: 4 | smell: 4 | taste: 4 | feel: 4.5 | overall: 4.5

Thanks to duff27 for this bottle share! Thanks Chris!

reviewed from notes 5/10/12.

poured into tulip glass.

Appearance: pale yellow with 1 finger of white head. Yeast settles down into the bottom of my tulip rather quickly.

Smell: prodominently funky lemons, but it smells good.

Taste: Easily a moderately sour beer. Funky lemons just as the nose implies. Mild hay and wheat notes. Pleasant.

Mouthfeel: Low bodied beer with medium carbonation. Really eppervescent carbonation. Really fresh tasting sour beer.

Overall: This has gotta be an under the radar sour. Its made in Ohio of all places and thats where an under the radar sour would probably come from! Get yourself a bottle if you like a sour brew.

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Photo of Duff27
4.05/5  rDev +2%
look: 4 | smell: 4 | taste: 4 | feel: 4.5 | overall: 4

Cork to piece, made due with what we had.

Short white head on a orange/yellow beer. Leaves a clad and some lacing.

Woo, tart aroma. Lemony.

Sweet initially then turns to very, very tart. Leaves the mouth watering.

Very carbonated, adds an element. Medium medium thin mouthfeel.

Good "local surprise" here. Would have again would recommend to sour fans. Thanks MaxSpang...go to snobbybeer.com!

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Photo of spinrsx
3.82/5  rDev -3.8%
look: 3.5 | smell: 4 | taste: 4 | feel: 3.5 | overall: 3.5

22oz Bottle

Appearance – Hazy yellow/amber colour with a small size fizzy white coloured head. There is an average amount of carbonation showing and there is some faint lacing. The head lasted for around 5 minutes before it was gone.

Smell - Grains/wheat, citric/lemons, vinegar

Taste & Mouth - The beer has an average amount of carbonation. Most of the taste is made up of tart citrus and some vinegar. There is also some wheat/barnyard flavour and a bit of a rustiness. It ends with a tart aftertaste.

Overall – Pretty good stuff. I wasn't expecting much but the flavours are very good and the beer isn't that far off from some of the more renowned lambics I have tried.

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Photo of DCon
4.4/5  rDev +10.8%
look: 4 | smell: 4 | taste: 4.5 | feel: 5 | overall: 4.5

Enjoyed 2- 8oz pours from a tapper @ the East Nashville Beer Festival in Nashville, TN. Tapped from a White Tap Handle that has Lambic and Rivertown on it into my 8oz East Nashville Beer Festival Tasting Glass. Had to go back for a second of this!! Favorite of the entire festival.

Aroma- A big amount of funk from the beginning and then finishes with light citrus. Very sweet to the nose as well.

Appearance- Received with a less than .5 finger head that dies immediately. Has a clear, dark golden (almost light orange) colored body. Leaves no lacing behind.

Flavor- Huge citric and funk from the beginning to end of the taste. Sour barnyard and complexed sweetness. Enjoying every last drop of this!

Mouthfeel- Light Bodied, HUGE Carbonation, Tons of puckering with dry flavors, and then has a high tart finish. Perfect for this style!

Overall Impression- While sour beers are some of my favorites out of any style, this one rocked the festival into conversation all day about it! If you get a chance, pick up more than one bottle and I'll take one off your hands in a trade! Perfect unblended lambic attributes. The appearance and smell were above average but the rest of the beer has high marks!

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Photo of Bierguy5
4/5  rDev +0.8%
look: 4 | smell: 4 | taste: 4 | feel: 4 | overall: 4

2010 vintage, 22 oz bottle. Hazy straw color, with some tiny, fine bubbles emerging. Thin white head fades quickly, but stays at a nice ring.

Earthy, oaky nose. Some lemon zest and fruity notes. Funky, and a bit musty.

Only a bit tart up front. Lemon zest, with some drying oak. A bit earthy, but not overwhelming.

Light body, with some refreshing carbonation. Alcohol is a non-factor. Not overly complex, but some nice flavors. Well done from a younger American brewery, and in my home state!

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Photo of AleWatcher
4.51/5  rDev +13.6%
look: 4 | smell: 4.25 | taste: 4.5 | feel: 4.5 | overall: 5

Giant chunks of yeast came tumbling out as the hazy golden body filled my glass. The beer gushed a little, but now after a few sips, there is almost no carbonation.

Smells pretty nice-- I'm pretty impressed with the level of oaky funk going here. There is a nice level of bright fruity notes, and a good citrusy lemon note.
The flavor adds a good tart bite, but it lacks that solid sourness that I look for.

Feels is pretty damn good-- medium-light with plenty of carbonation.

Overall-- very impressed by this one. I wasn't expecting much, but I hunted around Columbus to find this beer and I'm certainly not disappointed!

I really enjoyed this one. I brought a bottle to darklord day last year and everyone else like it a lot too.
When compared to authentic Belgian Lambic, this beer is ok. But as an American brewed Lambic, especially one coming out of Ohio, this is superb. This is about 96% as good as Duck Duck Gooze or Cable Car... Without the hassle to land it.
In terms of a "bang for your buck" beer, this is a strong winner.

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Photo of Spider889
3.14/5  rDev -20.9%
look: 3 | smell: 4 | taste: 3 | feel: 3 | overall: 2.5

Graciously shared by Ryan011235. I believe that this was the "palate cleanser" so to speak at our BA BORIS tasting before we dove into Royale.

A - Depending on whose pour we looked at (there were 4-6 of us) there was mild to absolutely zero clarity. Tons of sediment wound up in the last several pours. Small white head that quickly dissipates. Also of note, the cork broke while we were trying to open it, and the beer was near gusher territory as well.

S - Nice traditional lambic aroma - some funky lemon, light brett, and mild oak and must. Nothing groundbreaking or top tier, but solid for an emerging US brewer.

T - Not very sour at all, which we were all disappointed in. Mild tartness and a little brett, but even that was subdued. And here I thought that brett was unstoppable once introduced...

M/O - Low carbonation. Maybe that was the result of the early gush of foam, or the odd cork issues. Overall I'd classify that as a valiant effort, but there's definitely room for improvement. But hell, I think it's cool just to see a US brewer attempt a true lambic. Party on.

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Photo of Ryan011235
3.26/5  rDev -17.9%
look: 2 | smell: 3.5 | taste: 3 | feel: 4 | overall: 3.5

Poured into a Darkness tulip on 8/20/11; shared with some of the local crew.

The cork was wet and wimpy, breaking in half with the bottom still in the neck. Careful.

Vintage 2010

Pale, golden yellow; a touch sun-faded. Lots of bubbles cling to the side of the glass. one finger of large-bubbled foam lasts for but a flash. A few stray bubbles remain. No much for lace. There's an odd ring of sediment around the top.

Smells pretty good, if a bit on the soft side. Deep-seated funk. Not tart or sour, just a lot of straight funk. Buggy says stinky cheese - I'll give him that. Damp oak, vinous tones and some light fruits - tangy apple, white grapes and pear.

The flavor has a brief, watery fruity/tangy twinge that gives way to a mild funk and undertones of wood. Moderately vinous, especially in the mid-section. Very, very dry finish. Soft grass tones, too. It doesn't taste bad, just simple and not all that exciting.

Light body; fairly crisp. Carbonation isn't so high as to make it sharp or harsh. Actually, carbonation is pretty low. One long, dry, funk-laden finish.

Rivertown Lambic isn't a bad beer, but it's lacking in the wow-factor department. Not a bad early effort. hopefully Rivertown keeps it up.

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Photo of Jwale73
4.22/5  rDev +6.3%
look: 4 | smell: 4.5 | taste: 4 | feel: 4 | overall: 4.5

Thanks to jdiddy for breaking this beer out. A great label with a bottle shape that is very reminiscent of a single malt. 2010 vintage served in a tulip. Pours a pale gold hue with a hazy clarity and a loose, quarter inch bright white head that dissipates into a thin, tight white band around the edges. Nose is somewhat Cantillon-esque - salty, funky, citrusy, cork. Reminds me a bit of a funky version of Ithaca Brute. Taste follows nose - no surprises; however, the funk is less prominent than suggested by the aromas present in the nose. Mouthfeel is light-medium (but closer to light) and slightly astringent, but not overly so. Carbonation is pleasant, not overly assertive and even from start to finish. Overall, I really enjoyed this beer and would love to track down a couple more bottles to cellar. The surprise of the night for me.

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Photo of thagr81us
4/5  rDev +0.8%
look: 4 | smell: 4 | taste: 4 | feel: 4 | overall: 4

Big thanks goes out to my boy aasher for giving me this one during our MASSIVE in-person trade when he came down to visit! Thanks buddy! Served from bottle into a Mikkeller taster flute. Poured a hazy golden yellow with a one finger pure white head that subsided to a minimal amount slowly. Maintained nice lacing throughout the glass. The aroma was comprised of sweet malt, citrus, lemon zest, funk, and slight tart fruit. The flavor was of sweet malt, funk, lemon rine, lemon zest, citrus, and wood. It had a light feel on the palate with medium-high carbonation. Overall this was a decent brew. I was really surprised at how citrus/lemon forward this one was. The funk aspect was quite nice on this one and played well with citrus however. My only gripe was that this one wasn't as complex as I would have liked, but still managed to come across as a nice brew to all who tried it. Worth trying if you can find it, and worth seeking out for fans of the style or lemony brew fans.

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Photo of youradhere
4.5/5  rDev +13.4%
look: 4.5 | smell: 4.5 | taste: 4.5 | feel: 4.5 | overall: 4.5

Cork pulled apart in three pieces- cheap agglomerated cork, not a good sign initially. Pours a hazy straw gold, ample white head, and a thick cap of lacing after the head had fallen. Smells like lemon zest, saltwater (in a good way), light grain, straw, very appealing. Salty citrus, lemon, slight sweet malt, mild citric acid, slight black pepper. Mouthfeel is light-medium and carbonation is high, body lingers just enough, very well balanced, extremely smooth drinking. Damn I need more! Oh and brewer- upgrade the cork, presentation is everything, and I'd hate to have a bottle ruined by a disintigrated cork!

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Photo of Dreadnaught33
4.17/5  rDev +5%
look: 4 | smell: 4.5 | taste: 4 | feel: 4.5 | overall: 4

A solid Lambic brought to a tasting by Dave, thanks man. Think this beer seems overrated on here maybe.

A: Hazy light yellow color, quite opaque but lighter in color. No lacing or head really.

S: Great barnyard wild yeast funk thats not overly tart, very round. I'm thinking cantillon funk like champagne grape, lighter vinous white wine, and some berry. Very nice.

T: Nice tast too, a nice amount of tartness and oak weaved into the flavors. Tart at the back and a solid front the to taste with some sweetness. Just lacks a big fruit presence to compliment the tart and oak. Something missing from the middle of the taste, but it';s definitely still a good tasting beer.

M: Great feel and carbonation.

Overall good. Would like a little more fruit though. Solid stuff

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Photo of Huhzubendah
4.07/5  rDev +2.5%
look: 4 | smell: 4.5 | taste: 4 | feel: 3.5 | overall: 4

Bottle shared by djmiller92. Thanks Dave.

The beer is really hazy and yellow hued, with a thin, white head. The aroma is really nice, with an authentic Belgian lambic vibe. Funky citrus, yeast, hay, straw. The flavor is quite enjoyable, though it lacks the complexity that was potential in the aroma. The finish is not as full or exciting as the first half of the flavor profile. A decent example of an American gueuze.

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Photo of schwaeh
3.62/5  rDev -8.8%
look: 3.5 | smell: 4 | taste: 3.5 | feel: 3.5 | overall: 3.5

Bottle shared by Ryan011235

A: Pours a light golden-yellow. The pour yields a 1 finger fluffy white head that fades quickly. This has high carbonation.

S: Smells of lemons, oak, white wine, and the usual bretty aromas. Smells acidic and fairly tart. It has a nice dank musty basement funk with some sweat sock mixed in.

T: This tastes very lemony with plenty of oak subtleties- vanilla and woody flavors. The wild yeast adds some funky cheese and light tartness, while making for a dry finish. Its nice and acidic with a bit of funk and very light tartness, not any sourness.

M: Thin effervescent mouthfeel. Again, highly carbonated.

O: Glad I got to try this before it was totally gone. Not a bad first lambic from a Cinci brewery. I didn't expect anything great so this pretty much met my expectations. They could really nail this with the next batch. Worth checking out.

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Photo of ColdPoncho
4/5  rDev +0.8%
look: 4 | smell: 4 | taste: 4 | feel: 4 | overall: 4

From notes

A - cloudy yellow body, small white foam

S - pretty tart, some lemon notes, a bit of a wine-like smell.

T - tart and just a bit syrupy. Tasting a bit of wine here again, some funk. nice

M - light, pretty smooth, pretty nice

O - Pretty good beer! probably the best one I've had from Rivertown, and one of the few that doesn't have any glaring deficiencies.

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Photo of Urbancaver
4/5  rDev +0.8%
look: 4 | smell: 4 | taste: 4 | feel: 4 | overall: 4

Thanks Carl!
Pours a light hazy yellow. A good amount of white head. Smells tart and light. Funky but not that earthy. Tastes tart and funky. The sourness is not that strong. Overall tasty but nothing special. Enjoyable and one of the better offerings that Rivertown has. A great first attempt and I'd love to see more of this!

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Photo of brew3crew
4.15/5  rDev +4.5%
look: 4 | smell: 4 | taste: 4 | feel: 4.5 | overall: 4.5

Thanks carol

A hazy yellow with a white head that quickly disapates

S- very funky and tart smelling

T- wow. Very tart. Goes done really smooth. A nice fruity taste that blends to sour

M-lihht body and smooth

O-good first attempt on this. Would like to see it with age

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Photo of HopHead84
4/5  rDev +0.8%
look: 4 | smell: 4 | taste: 4 | feel: 4 | overall: 4


Bottle shared by Riko, thanks!

A: Yellow and very hazy with a fast fading white bubbly head. 

S: The aroma is surprisingly wild, with horsey barnyard and leather notes. Brackish and lactic lemon notes are evident. I get a little vinegar.

T: Tart and acidic up front with lemon and oak. Dry and lightly salty with leather and earth. Moderately lactic. The finish is tart, oaky, and acidic.

M: Medium body with moderate carbonation. The mouthfeel is dry and sticky.

Overall: Surprisingly good.

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Photo of MbpBugeye
3.37/5  rDev -15.1%
look: 3.5 | smell: 4 | taste: 3 | feel: 3 | overall: 3.5

Bottle shared by Ryan011235.

Lemon yellow, this beer is very bright and pale. Its fairly hazy and has spotty lace from a short lived head.

Very lactic. The sourness is low, making way for a lot of cheese and sweat sock lactic stink. Some malt vinegar as well.

Again, sourness is low. Its very cheesy and lactic. More vinegar notes here as well. Some lemon tartness and bready dough on the finish.

The finish isn't as dry as I had hoped. Its actually pretty slick. Carbonation is low but sharp enough to poke through the fuller body.

A good stab at a very hard to replicate style.

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Photo of phiberoptik
4/5  rDev +0.8%
look: 4 | smell: 4 | taste: 4 | feel: 4 | overall: 4

Nice looking bottle, I was thrown off by the cap and cork. My one and only negative is that the cork was very wet, broke, and when I finally got it out, I lost a couple ounces of it as the bottle volcanoed on my counter.

Pours a cloudy but bright golden orange with a champagne head that quickly dissipates.

Smells musty, sweet, fruity, and ready to go. It smells more like a champagne than a beer. Very enjoyable.

Sour up front, like a soft lemon juice. Sweet and sour really. Reminiscent of candy. A bit of fresh cut apple, like the peel specifically. Under ripe fruits too.

Light, bright, and bubbly.

I am very happy with this and proud that its from Cincinnati. This gets me excited about what Rivertown is going to come up with next. I need to give their Hop Baron another try because if they can make this, I have to believe their Hop Bomber is better than the one I tried.

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Photo of emerge077
4/5  rDev +0.8%
look: 4 | smell: 4 | taste: 4 | feel: 4 | overall: 4

Big thanks to Dave for sharing this, only recently on the radar.
Review from written notes.

Hazy pastel orange, some flecks of spotty foam here and there around the edges. Thin veil of skim across the surface as the foam dwindles away.

Tart and faintly sweet aroma, fruit forward, orange and minerally white wine, champagne, mimosa-like.

Brightly tart and sweet fruit flavors, nectarine citrus, tangy lemon. Mellow vinous feel, a bit cidery, though not getting any vinegar or acetone at all, more of a clean tart lacto. Some slightly bretty funk that reminds me of warm white wine. Mildly acidic with some bite to it. Could be a little drier, and show more oak character. Overall though, a great example of an American Wild Ale inspired by traditional Belgian Lambic.

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Photo of Kelly88
4.3/5  rDev +8.3%
look: 4 | smell: 4 | taste: 4.5 | feel: 5 | overall: 4

Had on tap at the dilly deli. Served in a snifter.

A- hazy and murky pale lemon yellow. Starts with a bright white fizzy 1 1/2 finger head that leaves lace groping the snifter.

S- sweet and sour fruit that makes for a where's Waldo like experience. Lemon juice and vinious aromas waft out of the glass with a faint hint of lacto funk.

T- sour fruit mixes with a suggestion of wood you get from an old whiskey. Lemon and lime are prominent on the finish and really deliver a nice sour kick.

M- light and smooth on the palate with pleasing and teasing carbonation (light but adequate). Sourness creates a slight pucker that is perfect for the taste. I'm going to say perfect for the style.

Overall a great sour. This is my first but I think it is really great. Sour but not so that you will clinch up like a Mormon. Feel just fits the taste and the taste is very pleasant. Time to try more sours

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Photo of bluejacket74
3.83/5  rDev -3.5%
look: 4 | smell: 3.5 | taste: 4 | feel: 3.5 | overall: 4

750 ml capped and corked bottle, 2010 vintage. Served in a flute, the beer pours a hazy straw gold color with about a half inch white head. Head retention is decent, and there's a small amount of lacing. Aroma is lemon peel, oak, and some funk. It's a nice but light aroma. The brew tastes like tart apples, pears, lemon peel, vinegar, and some funk. Nice lingering tart finish. Mouthfeel/body is light/medium and it's well carbonated. I think this is a good brew, I'd buy this again in the future. Definitely worth a try.

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Photo of BeerAndBourbon
3.88/5  rDev -2.3%
look: 4 | smell: 3.5 | taste: 4 | feel: 4 | overall: 4

A. Pours cloudy very pale yellow with just a wisp of a white foam head.

S. A nice lemon tartness with a touch of oak.

T. Lemon tartness, oak, some barnyard mustiness, a touch of peach, and a bit of white wine.

M. Fairly thin with a high carbonation level.

D. Highly drinkable. Great on a warm summer night.

M. A good beer; certainly one of the best from Cincinnati. I wish it was a bit more full in terms of both mouthfeel and flavor. It's a decent tartness, but it should be sitting on top of a more complex background. I certainly hope they continue to refine this.

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Lambic from Rivertown Brewing Co.
3.97 out of 5 based on 296 ratings.
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