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Craftsman El Prieto Sour Black Ale | Craftsman Brewing Co.

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very good
12 Reviews
no score
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Brewed by:
Craftsman Brewing Co.
California, United States

Style: American Wild Ale

Alcohol by volume (ABV): 8.40%

Availability: Rotating

Notes / Commercial Description:
No notes at this time.

Added by Floydster on 07-22-2008

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Reviews: 12 | Ratings: 29
Photo of rodbeermunch
3.56/5  rDev -6.8%
look: 3.5 | smell: 3.75 | taste: 3.5 | feel: 3.5 | overall: 3.5

Brownish liquid, almost black. Dark fruit, cherry, fig, plum raisin aromas.

Taste was good, sour respectable, roastiness present but not domineering. Fruits don't come through as much as in the nose. Mouthfeel does leave me wanting more sourness.

This isn't going to make anyone forget about Tart of Darkness anytime soon, but it is a decent 2nd tier sour stout option. Way better than Clutch.

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Photo of womencantsail
3.9/5  rDev +2.1%
look: 4 | smell: 4 | taste: 4 | feel: 4 | overall: 3.5

On-tap at Bruery Provisions

Very dark brown, cola sort of color with a khaki head. Very nice sourness with black cherry, raisin, and plum notes. A hint of lemon and mild balsamic vinegar, too. Only a touch of roasted malt. The tartness is fairly lactic and clean. Not quite as much fruit character as is present on the nose, but still some raisin and black cherry. Mild roast with a subtle sweetness in the background.

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Photo of kojevergas
3.53/5  rDev -7.6%
look: 4 | smell: 3.5 | taste: 3.5 | feel: 3.5 | overall: 3.5

Served on-draught into a stem-goblet at Father's Office in Santa Monica, California. Reviewed from notes. I was in the mood for a good sour and expectations were average as this was me first beer from this brewery. Cost was 8 USD; thanks to me friend Alan for the round.

A: Pours a 1.5 finger head of nice silky cream, good thickness, slight tan colour, and pretty decent retention. Colour is a solid nontransparent black. No yeast particles are visible on account of the opaqueness.

Sm: Bacteria, cream, tart fruit, and sourness. A subtle moderate strength aroma.

T: Nicely sour without going overboard. A clean malt foundation supports the bacteria and wild yeast. Few dark malts are present. Full bodied and enjoyable. Some layering. Complex enough, with some subtlety. Lovely. Balanced well and well built for a sour.

Mf: Smooth and wet. Adequate carbonation. Thick enough. The mouthfeel stays out of the way of the flavours, which is just fine seeing as the flavours are enjoyable.

Dr: Very drinkable for a sour; this won't be puckering any lips anytime soon. I'd easily have it again - ideally at a better price. Very enjoyable. Hides its ABV well.


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Photo of ehammond1
4/5  rDev +4.7%
look: 4 | smell: 4 | taste: 4 | feel: 4 | overall: 4

On Tap

Churchill's Pub & Grille
San Marcos, CA

Very dark brown pour with dark ruby edges and a thin brown head. This leaves spots of lace down the glass.

An acidic aroma that also provides elements of roast, coffee, and tart cherries.

The flavor follows the aroma, with acidic sourness and cherries leading the way, with the coffee and roast elements only in the background. There's also a touch of what might be smoke, but it's faint.

Medium bodied with moderate carbonation.

I enjoyed this one a lot.

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Photo of DoubleJ
3.97/5  rDev +3.9%
look: 3.5 | smell: 4 | taste: 4 | feel: 4 | overall: 4

On-tap at Beachwood BBQ over a month ago, on to the beer:

It looks obsidian in the glass, and leaves a few strings of lace around the glass. The nose is interesting, combining characteristics of a sour and dark ale. There is some tart berry, and also a dose of cocoa. But in the taste, the dark ale aspect is less of a factor, as this is more dominant of the sour part. The taste of blackberry, also suggestions of other tart fruits. In summary, it's tart and tasty fun.

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Photo of UCLABrewN84
3.54/5  rDev -7.3%
look: 3 | smell: 4 | taste: 3.5 | feel: 3 | overall: 3.5

On tap for Churchill's Renaissance at Churchill's Pub & Grille in San Marcos, CA.

Pours a clear dark brown with a tan head that settles to an oily film. No lacing on this one. Smell is of sour cherries and other dark fruits with some tart and funky aromas. Taste is pretty much the same but there is an almost ashy flavor that comes out as the beer warms. This beer has a low level of carbonation with a slightly flat mouthfeel. Overall, this is a pretty good sour beer but nothing really all that special.

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Photo of mactrail
3.13/5  rDev -18.1%
look: 3.5 | smell: 3 | taste: 3 | feel: 4 | overall: 3

Very dark. Quite acidic. Also rather bitter with hoppy flavors. Seems to be a soured black IPA, which you might think twice about doing. Some fruit, like fermented bitterish cider apples. Not totally acidic, but close. Malt and hops seem to be missing from the flavor profile. OK, it's a sour, but seems pretty one-dimensional to me.

Nice carbonation on the tongue is perhaps the best feature. Vinegar nose. Fruit vinegar aftertaste with some bitterness. On tap at Local Habit in San Diego 02/15.

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Photo of hopdog
4.2/5  rDev +9.9%
look: 4 | smell: 4 | taste: 4.5 | feel: 4 | overall: 4

On tap.

Poured a dark brown color with a reddish tint and a very small sized off white head. Aromas of lots of roastiness, dark fruits, cherries, and black berries. Tastes of grapes, dark fruits, somewhat vinous, and cherries. Light to medium sour finish.

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Photo of route66pubs
4.01/5  rDev +5%
look: 4 | smell: 3 | taste: 4.5 | feel: 3.5 | overall: 4.5

Poured at The Verdugo last night (Thanks Ryan!)

A: Rich, dark color - seemed almost black but with hind of red - with very little head.

S: I'm not usually a fan of sours, so I quickly noticed the sour aroma that oozed from the glass. But the aroma was very tempered and did not get in the way of tasting. Fans of sours would probably love this.

T: Again, not being a fan of sours, this was what I primarily noticed at the beginning. However, a couple of drinks into the pour a slight hint of chocolate came to the forefront with the sour tailing down the mouth into the throat.

M: Felt very light and unassuming, almost non-noticeable despite its sourness.

D: My first drink was a bit rough, again being attributed to my lack of previous interest in sours. But further into the pour the sourness warmed away making this a quite enjoyable brew, even for myself. Definitely something that I would recommend to others.

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Photo of charlzm
4.05/5  rDev +6%
look: 4 | smell: 4 | taste: 4 | feel: 3.5 | overall: 4.5

Consumed at Blue Palms, Hollywood, CA on 09/04/08.

A very dark brown with good clarity. A one finger tan head.

Aroma is tart; reminds me of apple cider.

The flavor is similar to the nose; tart and just sour enough to make me wince on the first sip. A mild sweet maltiness follows, smoothing out proceedings and making the brew very drinkable. Some green apple on the finish.

The best Craftsman I have had. I will order this one on draft wherever I see it.

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Photo of rxdrewthejew
4.2/5  rDev +9.9%
look: 4 | smell: 4 | taste: 4.5 | feel: 4 | overall: 4

My first pour at Blue Palms this Saturday. Also my first Craftsman.

A: Served in a lager glass...brown with some reddish highlights. Not much head but plenty of bubbles.

S: Roasted malt is most notable, along with a bit of sourness.

T: Very nice flavor which really combines a toasty malt with moderate sourness and a touch of sweetness as well. The malt was most prominent to me, particularly at the beginning, but the sour aspect came out in the middle and lingered on. Sourness is somewhat lemon and perhaps sour cherries. Extremely nice flavor.

MF: Thin bodied but good carbonation and of course the sourness gave this a good feel. Not much warming, but the alcohol seemed to catch up to me pretty quickly, which I was not expecting.

D: Mixing sourness with the toasted malt was a bit different, but worked quite well. Reminds me a bit of Jolly Pumpkin's Bam Noir, but with a much more developed and tasty sourness. Not really a sessionable beer...as I mentioned the alcohol really snuck up on me. I would not hesitate to drink this again, and would seek it out if I knew there was a place serving it.

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Photo of Floydster
3.6/5  rDev -5.8%
look: 4 | smell: 4 | taste: 3.5 | feel: 4 | overall: 3

Last taster of the day at the Stone's 2nd Annual Sour Fest yesterday afternoon, reviewed from notes, did not know much about this brew but heard some good things about it throughout the day

A-Very dark brown with a maroon look, 1/2 inch creamy tan head, did not last long, not much lacing or retention
S-Sourness, smokiness, big malty aroma, roasted accents, the smell caught me off guard and was pretty chaotic
T-This beer had two sides, a rich malty beginning, then a sour and piercing ending, liked the start more so, a little less tart would have done this justice, did not really fine that mold, still not a bad sour
M-Sweet and sour mouthfeel, medium bodied, lots of carbonation for a darker beer of this kind
D-Could have drank much of this, especially at that point in the day for me, sourness can be overwhleming at times in this one, ABV was medium from my guess

Craftsman's best of the festival in my opinion, did not hold up great to a few of the other dark beers there but still tasty, wonder if this is made without the sour addition because it would be interesting to see how big of a difference it makes, worth trying if you ever see it around

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Craftsman El Prieto Sour Black Ale from Craftsman Brewing Co.
3.82 out of 5 based on 29 ratings.
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