Craftsman Honesty Ale
Craftsman Brewing Co.

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American Wild Ale
Ranked #1,042
Ranked #11,472
4.02 | pDev: 8.46%
Craftsman Brewing Co.
California, United States
Notes: Made with cherry juice.
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Reviews: 16 | Ratings: 42 | Log in to view all ratings and sort
Photo of rodbeermunch
3.57/5  rDev -11.2%
look: 3.5 | smell: 3.25 | taste: 3.75 | feel: 3.75 | overall: 3.5

Brownish dark red pour, small head. Cherry aroma, somewhat subdued.

Taste hits its stride, notes of cherry, blackberry, good amount of sourness. Acidic mouthfeel, citrus comes in too. Malt sweetness is on point, not too sugary, more like brown sugar in the right proportion.

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Photo of UCLABrewN84
4/5  rDev -0.5%
look: 4 | smell: 4 | taste: 4 | feel: 4 | overall: 4

On tap for the first anniversary party at Beachwood BBQ & Brewing in Long Beach, CA.

Pours a murky reddish-brown with a foamy bone colored head that settles to wisps of film on top of the beer. Thin rings of lace line the glass on the drink down. Smell is of sour cherries, funk, and some medicinal aromas. Taste is much the same with an acidic quality on the finish. There is a medium amount of roasty bitterness on the palate with each sip. This beer has a good level of carbonation with a crisp mouthfeel. Overall, this is a good beer that is not too sour and quite drinkable.

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

On-tap at Blue Palms Brewhouse - served in a tulip.

Lightly cloudy carmine body with ruby highlights and an ivory finger of even foam. Sticky lacing and good retention with a perpetual popped collar.

Toffee, caramel, and Luxardo in the nose along with other esters that meld with the fruit. Bubblegum, jolly ranchers, and rock candy lend a hand as well.

Cherry pie, cherry pits, caramel apples, and hints of rosemary and toasted malt on the palate. Very much like a fresh naturally sweetened bramble with hints of brown sugar in the finish. Uniquely balanced cherry sour free of medicinal qualities or off notes.

Medium-light bodied very fruity and refreshing with a sweetness that draws you (and several Drosophila) back again and again.

The best Craftsman offering I've tried so far, and a fantastic (albeit sweet) example of the style.

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Photo of ehammond1
3.95/5  rDev -1.7%
look: 4 | smell: 4 | taste: 4 | feel: 3.5 | overall: 4

On Tap

Blue Palms 3rd Anniversary Party
Blue Palms BrewHouse
Los Angeles, CA

Light yellow and orange with a thin white head. Lines of lacing down the glass. Lots of carbonation running up through the body of the beer.

Muted aroma, though I like what's here. There is a slight mustiness, some sour tartness, and a cherry/citrus sweetness.

A very mild sourness with cherry and lemon sweetness along with just a touch of musty barnyard funk.

Medium bodied though a touch heavy.

A tasty offering from Craftsman. Though I haven't sampled much, this is by far my favorite so far from Craftsman.

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Photo of FosterJM
4.3/5  rDev +7%
look: 4 | smell: 4 | taste: 4.5 | feel: 4 | overall: 4.5

439th review on BA

App- A couple shades down from Orange with a nice 1/2 finger of head and some good cling.

Smell- Its a sour beer for sure. This was immediately tart with a little bit o funk to it. I had my nose buried in the glass.

Taste- Taste follows the nose big time on this one. It was sour with some fresh lemon peel to it. A little bit of a pucker on it as well.

Mouth- Light bodied with a high carbonation level. Left a nice sour citrus after taste.

Drink- This was very tasty. I could see this becoming a favorite of a lot of people in the future. Was sour, balanced but not overpoweringly puckering.

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Photo of LittleDon
4.55/5  rDev +13.2%
look: 4 | smell: 4 | taste: 5 | feel: 4.5 | overall: 4.5

A half pint at Urge Gastropub in Rancho Bernardo, San Diego, CA

Red-brown and cloudy, filmy head, lots of lace. Tons of sour cherries in both aroma and taste. Oaky, vinous characteristics to go with the fruit. There are some alcohol notes in the middle and a mildly bitter back end. Carbonation is high, but not too high, and body is light. This is more sour than lambic. There is too much sour fruit, oak, and alcohol to consider it as such.

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Photo of alenonbeeradv
3.68/5  rDev -8.5%
look: 4 | smell: 3.5 | taste: 4 | feel: 3 | overall: 3.5

A - rusty and hazy light tainted red with a minimal but appropriate amount of head.

S - less sour than expected. Musky and malty af well as a fruit bowl that's been left out maybe a couple days
too long.

T - fruity, earthy, funky, sour, with a suprisingly malty aftertaste. A lil bitter.

M - a med amount of carbonation. The flavors quickly blend leaving it hard to focus on anything but the staky fruity sourness.

O - happy to have tried. Don't know if I would buy the bottle.

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Photo of snpub540
4/5  rDev -0.5%
look: 4 | smell: 4 | taste: 4 | feel: 4 | overall: 4

Appearance is an orangish copper hue with a half finger head of white foam.

Aroma is all cherry with a nice sour funk.

Taste is tart cherry and some lemon acid but definitly a crisp fresh taste.

Mouthfeel is medium bodied and it is very clean tasting. Definitly a nice and refreshing beer. Sour enough to make you crave more.

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Photo of HopHead84
4.1/5  rDev +2%
look: 4 | smell: 4 | taste: 4 | feel: 4 | overall: 4.5


On tap at Stone. I wasn't crazy about this the first time I had it, but I've heard good things about this new batch. Thanks to Patrick for the recommendation and sample.

A: Slightly hazed golden orange with a one inch white head. Lacing is scattered.

S: Moderately lactic, with notes of cherry, lemon, peach, and white grape. A nice lactic fruit cornucopia with some vanilla. It has a moderate funk presence; it's musty and mildly leathery with hay and earth notes. Oak is evident. Nice aroma.

T: Moderately lactic up front with a light citric acidity and a moderate acetic presence. Oak accompanies lightly sweet cherries, and the sweetness dries out quickly. Lightly tannic with a lower moderate sourness that increases towards the moderate acetic cherry oak finish. There's a subtle peach undertone as well.

M: Medium light in body with moderate carbonation. Mouthfeel is dry, sticky, and mildly tannic.

Overall: Much better than the first batch I had. Enjoyable stuff.

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Photo of beagle75
4.27/5  rDev +6.2%
look: 4 | smell: 4.5 | taste: 4.5 | feel: 3.5 | overall: 4

Draft service into a tulip glass at Beachwood BBQ.

A: Slightly hazy, medium reddish-amber color with one finger of white foam head. Moderate lacing remains on the glass.

S: Fairly balanced between cherries, oak, and lactic acidity. While the smell could not be described as intense, the intensity does match that of the taste.

T: Begins off-dry, with smooth lactic tartness. Assertive cherry fruit emerges toward the middle, when faint hints of oak also become detectable. The finish is clean and dry, with some lingering cherry flavor but only a trace of acidity.

M: Thin to medium viscosity, slightly coating on the palate with tannins that enhance the pucker-factor from the tartness. Carbonation is moderate.

D: An appealing balance between wood, fruit, and restrained sourness is struck here. While not as big a beer as most Flanders-style kriek beers, such as Cascade Kriek, the sensory qualities present themselves with clarity. Also, it is not overly complex like the challenging, wine-influenced Russian River Supplication. Craftsman really got this sour ale just right.

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Photo of brentk56
4.1/5  rDev +2%
look: 4 | smell: 4 | taste: 4 | feel: 4 | overall: 4.5

Appearance: Arrives at the bar with a tawny, garnet color and a two finger head that leaves a nice sheeting of lace

Smell: Distinctively aromatic, with cherry and oak elements

Taste: Cherry fruit flavor, up front, with an increasingly tart character developing by mid-palate; after the swallow, the oaky elements add complexity, though the tartness is clearly restrained for the style

Mouthfeel: Light to medium body with moderate to high carbonation

Drinkability: I would characterize this as an American Wild Ale for those who like tart ales, but want to have the tartness present in a balancing fashion rather than dominating the profile; the bartender at Surly Goat (a woman) said that most men don't like it, but I think that this is more than a "chick beer"

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Photo of mactrail
3.73/5  rDev -7.2%
look: 4 | smell: 3.5 | taste: 4 | feel: 3.5 | overall: 3.5

Fruity tart ale. According to the chalkboard, brewed with Montmorency cherries (pie cherries).

Color is a beautiful color that can only be called orange. Great fruit flavor with just enough acidity. Plenty of Belgian flavors. Clear, clean, slight head. Hint of odd candy flavor like liquorice. Clean, refreshing, watery mouthfeel. Neither malty nor hoppy. Some bitterness but not really a hop flavor.

A tasty oddity, at least for a small glass. Quarter litre in a small tulip for $5.50 is how they served it at Blind Lady Ale House in San Diego. The aftertaste is not so pleasant-- the bitterness of chewing on orange seeds.

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Photo of womencantsail
3.9/5  rDev -3%
look: 4 | smell: 4 | taste: 3.5 | feel: 4 | overall: 4.5

On-tap at Stone

A: The pour is a clear light amber color with a moderate white head and some spotty lacing.

S: The nose isn't overly intense, but some nice tart lactic and citrus notes. There isn't much in the way of funk, but there is some light toasty malt.

T: This isn't terribly complex in the flavor department, especially for a sour ale. The lactic acid provides a nice tartness along with a mild citrus bite. Again, the malt makes an appearance which isn't all that usual for a sour beer.

M: The beer is medium bodied with a nice full carbonation and a moderately dry finish.

D: This is certainly a very easy beer to drink and would be a good introduction to sour beers. Not my favorite, but nice to try.

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Photo of itsalljake
4.73/5  rDev +17.7%
look: 4.5 | smell: 4 | taste: 5 | feel: 5 | overall: 5

On tap at Barbara's at The Brewery

Not sure if Craftsman has changed things since those last two reviews because I find this beer exceptional.

A-Beautiful copper with excellent carbonation and head, truly a delightful beer to watch.

S-not too much going on there, only a hint of the sour berry explosion to come.

T-Fantastic. Great blend of sour cherries and berries.

M-because of the sour brewing process this beer made my mouth sing. Extremely refreshing and clean/

D-All too good. I had to have another, and another. And since it is my local watering hole, I went back and had another.

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Photo of surfer4life
3.78/5  rDev -6%
look: 4 | smell: 3.5 | taste: 4 | feel: 3 | overall: 4

Poured into a tulip at Toronados San Diego.

A - Pours a deep and transparent copper with red hues here and there. Small head that quickly recedes to just foam skimmed over the top. Good lacing throughout.

S - The nose is not the strongest, but what I do detect is wonderful. A good hint towards the fruit that is typical with this style, good sour notes as well. No hops to be detected. Would have to give this one over to the apple/pear smell more than anything.

T - Mostly sour here with a small tinge of sweetness. I can tell that some small amount of hops was used for balance and it was just the right amount as it is definitely well balanced. What fruit I did get was some raisins and apricots with a small berry hint in it. It was delicious because it was not overbearing.

M - Light body with medium carbonation. It was a bit syrupy though which kept made the finish only slightly drying, leaving the mouth not quite slicked and not quite cleaned. Not bad, just could be better.

D - I would say this has good drinkability, quite a light one especially good for food pairing.

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Photo of davexisxrabid
4.35/5  rDev +8.2%
look: 4.5 | smell: 4.5 | taste: 4.5 | feel: 4 | overall: 4

On tap at the York in Highland Park.

Poured a nice golden-brown color with a fluffy, two finger thick white head. Good lacing.

Aroma is very sharp and citrus/alcohol in a pleasant way.

Had an almost tea-like flavor; a bit sour and puckering with a hint of honey and lemon. Couldn't really detect a hop bitterness-more of a citrus bitterness that was very pleasant.

Medium-full bodied, excellent retention on the palate.

Good drinkability and something I look forward to drinking again yet the sweet honey flavor may become a bit cloying after a few beers; I don't know that for sure since I only had one. All in all, worth a try.

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Craftsman Honesty Ale from Craftsman Brewing Co.
Beer rating: 90 out of 100 with 42 ratings