Ursa Minor | Rising Tide Brewing Company

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Ursa MinorUrsa Minor

Brewed by:
Rising Tide Brewing Company
Maine, United States

Style: American Stout

Alcohol by volume (ABV): 6.70%

Availability: Winter

Notes / Commercial Description:
Dark as squid ink and moody as the sea, Ursa Minor is our take on a winter wheat beer. Starting with a German wheat-beer yeast and a base of malted wheat, we added a blend of dark crystal and roasted malts to create a wheat stout. Redolent of dark fruit, weizen yeast esters, and roasted barley, Ursa Minor is perfect for an icy winter’s eve.

Added by dciBA on 12-18-2010

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Reviews: 56 | Ratings: 161
Photo of womencantsail
1.85/5  rDev -52.4%
look: 4 | smell: 1.5 | taste: 1.5 | feel: 3.5 | overall: 1.5

Thanks for sharing, Dan.

The pour is dark brown, almost black, with a khaki head. The nose on this is just awful. Burnt plastic, chemical solvents, rubber, and maybe even some smoke. Blech. The flavor is no better. Still lots of burnt plastic notes, rubber, acidity, and some roast and smoke. Terrible.

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Photo of rfgetz
3.15/5  rDev -19%
look: 3.5 | smell: 3.5 | taste: 3 | feel: 3 | overall: 3

Pours a dark dark brown with fizzy cola like head, gone quickly with little retention. Scent is a blend of dark roasted and charred grain along with tangy wheat, notes of chocolate and coffee with a light metallic twang. Taste follows suit, the tangy wheat and charred grain combine with a thin medium body and present more "meh" than "yay". Only the second wheat based stout i've had (haandbryggeriet dark force being the other), but neither has really stuck out as bringing the best each style can offer.

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Photo of kalosjakar
3.37/5  rDev -13.4%
look: 3.5 | smell: 3.25 | taste: 3.5 | feel: 3.25 | overall: 3.25

First off, this is the second bottle Ive opened and both times I was surprised by how much carbonation there was when popping it open. When you pour it, it foams up like no other beer and not in a good way.

Pours dark black with a coca cola looking head and unfortunately this beer is more foamy than coca cola. Ive tried pouring three times now and my glass is still less than half full. Finally have decent pour and the head which has since faded down quite a bit, looks good. A bit of creaminess to it.

Aroma is roasted malt and a slight chocolate note. Perhaps a bit of bready character but not much else.

Taste: medium mouthfeel, also yet again it reminds me of coca cola because of the high carbonation. Rising Tide should really address this if they intend to brew this again.

Roasted, slightly sweet chocolate notes.

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Photo of seeswo
3.41/5  rDev -12.3%
look: 4 | smell: 3 | taste: 3.5 | feel: 3.5 | overall: 3.5

Bottle shared by Cam. Thanks man.

Pours a very dark brown with a slight, way off-white head. The nose is roasted malts and not a whole lot else. Pretty low key. The taste is just slightly off of what a lot of imperial stouts bring to the table. That dry roastiness is replaced with a dry wheatiness, which is both slightly odd and yet., it works. That said, those represent the entirety of the dimensions of this beer. The mouthfeel is fine, maybe slightly high carbonation with a good body. Overall, it is a bit forgettable in spite of being a beer defined by something I've never heard before (Weizen stout).

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Photo of tigg924
3.44/5  rDev -11.6%
look: 3.75 | smell: 3.5 | taste: 3.5 | feel: 3.25 | overall: 3.25

Appearance: black in color, opaque, 1/4 creamy head, medium-highcarbonation

Smell: cocoa, dark chocolate, and light wheat

Taste: cocoa, dark chocolate, roasted malt, and light wheat

Mouthfeel: medium body for the style, medium carbonation, sweet with rich bitterness

Overall:Solid, but not spectacular stout. I was searching for a wheaty taste in this one and found it to be minimal. Not a bad beer, but not one i would rush to get again.

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Photo of TheManiacalOne
3.48/5  rDev -10.5%
look: 3.5 | smell: 3.5 | taste: 3.5 | feel: 3.25 | overall: 3.5

Poured from a 12oz bottle into a US tumbler pint glass.

A: The beer is a deep dark brown color with a thin fizzy brown head that fades very quickly and leaves very little lace on the glass.

S: The aroma contains roasted malts, dark fruit, licorice, wheat, some chocolate and coffee and a touch of hops.

T: The taste starts out with flavors of dark fruit, licorice, chocolate and coffee. Then a strong breadiness comes in from wheat and a hearty roasted malt character. The hops presence is very mild as you would expect nut there isn’t much balance. The after-taste is slightly sweet.

M: A little crisp and a little smooth, medium body, light-to-medium carbonation, finish is dry and slightly sticky.

O: A little tasty, goes down ok, not too filling, decent kick, not the best representation of style, there are definitely several better choices within the style.

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Photo of dasenebler
3.52/5  rDev -9.5%
look: 3 | smell: 3.5 | taste: 4 | feel: 2 | overall: 3.5

Bomber, no date to be found.

Pours a moderately thick and inky black. Head is fizzy and short-lived, with only a thin ring retaining.

Nose definitely has some Weissbier ester characteristics, along with dark malts and alcohol.

Flavor is very roasty and malty, firmly putting this beer in the category of Stout. Fruitiness of yeast complements the tangy component of the roast. Very chocolatey as it warms. Well balanced bitterness aids drinkability, though the alcohol is pretty apparent. Given how this poured I thought it would be thicker on the palate, but it's actually medium-bodied. Carbonation is messed-up. Starts out fizzy but dissipates really fast. Rising Tide is SO inconsistent in this department.

Fermenting a wheat stout with a top-fermenting German Weizen yeast is a very interesting, if dangerous, concept for a hybrid beer. But Rising Tide does an admirable job with it. Drinkable, innovative beer here.

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Photo of oline73
3.53/5  rDev -9.3%
look: 4 | smell: 3.5 | taste: 3.5 | feel: 3.5 | overall: 3.5

Poured from the bottle into a goblet.

Appearance: The beer pours black as night with over a finger of foamy tan head. The head sticks around pretty nicely.

Smell: Rather sweet but light. I'm getting some dark fruit and a hint of molasses. There is also a slightly fruity note in the mix.

Taste: Like a sweet stout, but a bit lighter. There is a cocoa like roasty note, but there is a bready sweet malt note that shows up as well. I'm getting a lot of dark fruit and come molasses. The finish is sweet and slightly roasty.

Mouthfeel: The body is medium with a ton of carbonation. The finish is slightly dry.

Overall: This is a very interesting beer. Reminded me a bit of a roasty oktoberfest. I'd have it again.

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Photo of Brad007
3.55/5  rDev -8.7%
look: 3.25 | smell: 3.75 | taste: 3.5 | feel: 3.5 | overall: 3.5

Pours a dark black with a thin brown head into my glass. The title is perplexing. What exactly is a weizen stout? Come to think of it, this isn't a stout at all.

Cocoa and sweet, sweet clove greet the nose. It's like a demented milk stout in my opinion. Complex.

Cocoa, roasted coffee, clove and wheat sum up the flavors. Very reminiscent of a brown ale as well but with weizen yeast. It's not viscous like an ordinary stout though.

Lingering cocoa and clove flavors punctuate the mouthfeel. Very mellow. Easy to enjoy.

It's certainly not a kristalweizen or a weizenbock for sure. Similar to the beer I reviewed before this in the way that it's an experimental take on combining two styles.

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Photo of andrewinski1
3.56/5  rDev -8.5%
look: 4.5 | smell: 3.5 | taste: 3.5 | feel: 3.5 | overall: 3.5

Poured into a tulip. Gigantic massive head that looks nice and creamy with a good tan color. The body is perfectly black.

Nice dry and roasted smell. There is a hint of maple and chocolate in the nose.

The taste starts out nice and malty. The roasted coffee-like flavors are most dominant. The malt sweetness is very subtle and does well to round out the bitterness just a touch, but overall I would call this on the drier side.

Nice medium body with a crisp carbonation.

Very delicious and highly drinkable stout. Perfect for a cool evening.

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Photo of jrallen34
3.65/5  rDev -6.2%
look: 4 | smell: 4 | taste: 3.5 | feel: 2.5 | overall: 4

Thanks to Mike for this buzzed tick... Pours a dark brown, almost black. The head is medium brown, pretty good retention and lacing... The aroma is truly a weizen stout, the front has banana and dark fruits with some bitter coffee on the back... The taste isn't as successful as its confusing and mouthfeel is too carbonated. Chocolate, coffee, and banana should work, but doesn't entirely.

This is certainly decent and something new, but I wouldn't push for this trend quite yet.

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Photo of davey101
3.77/5  rDev -3.1%
look: 4.25 | smell: 4 | taste: 3.75 | feel: 3 | overall: 3.75

Born 09/24/12. 22 oz bomber into an over sized wine glass. Thanks to BobZ for sending me home with this one!

Pours an inky black body with two fingers worth of the mocha stuff. Really sticks around for a long time with decent lacing and retention. The aroma is less "German Yeast" than I thought it would be. Loads of bakers chocolate and dry cocoa powder. Has a subtle oaty/wheaty maltiness going on. Sweet vanilla and a touch of dark fruits and roast, but for me this is just a chocolate bomb. Taste follows the nose with huge chocolate notes with faded yet pleasant roast and dark fruits. Light coffee, vanilla and anise. I know this is a lower abv stout, but the mouth feel is lacking a bit. Its just a bit too prickly and a bit too thin. Overall this was a really nice stout that could use a bit more body, but otherwise I enjoyed it. It has an especially awesome nose.

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Photo of gdrydenc
3.79/5  rDev -2.6%
look: 4.5 | smell: 3 | taste: 4 | feel: 4 | overall: 4

Reviewed from notes from 4/14.

A - Pours a dark brown, nearly black like a stout. 2 fingers of dark brown head that lasts quite a while.

S - ...not a lot in the nose while cold. As it warms, though, the coffee and a bit of chocolate.

T - Slightly lacking in the front, but the finish is solid. Tastes like a stout in the finish, but the front (where I assume the weizen would have been) has diminished. May have been my mistake holding onto it for so long. The wheat is more present as it warms, but still a bit missing.

M - Very carbonated for the style. Slightly watery on the tongue for a stout, but about right for a weizen.

Overall, cool beer, odd style.

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Photo of jmdrpi
3.81/5  rDev -2.1%
look: 4.5 | smell: 4 | taste: 3.75 | feel: 3.25 | overall: 3.75

22 oz bottle - lable is stamped 111 BORN110512 . so I guess this is almost a year old bottle.

appears opaque black, with ruby highlights in the corners of the glass. thick tan colored head that leaves great lacing. big roasty and earthy aroma, a little fruitiness too, must be the yeast. taste is a nice balance between acidic roastiness and slightly sweet malt. dry aftertaste. thicker body, but higher carbonation than expected.

overall a nice unique beer. I definitely see the German Wheat Ale influence.

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Photo of Omnium
3.81/5  rDev -2.1%
look: 4.25 | smell: 3.75 | taste: 3.75 | feel: 4 | overall: 3.75

Had on Nitro at the brewery.

A - Poured a nice black brown 2 fingers of fine dense tan head, thick lacing
S - Rich toasted caramel and chocolate malt, some nice smokiness, then some wheat and a little spice underneath
T - Creamy roasty flavor, good toasted malt some chocolates, some dark wheat, a touch of coffee and smokiness.
M - Creamy texture very smooth
O - More on the chocolate side of things not a whole lot of wheat, but a decent mix of styles.

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Photo of Kinsman
3.83/5  rDev -1.5%
look: 4 | smell: 3.5 | taste: 4 | feel: 3.5 | overall: 4

Bold and dark looking pour which is pitch black in the body and crowned with a thick and dense mocha colored head.

Aroma is loaded with cocoa and slightly fruity notes. Some roasted barley/robust coffee notes as well. Fruity esters are hard to pick out from the robust aromas of the stout but definitely are noticeable.

First taste greets you with dark chocolate and espresso notes before the fruity notes of the German Weizen yeast come into play. The wheat aspect seems to lighten the robustness a bit but add a pleasant maltiness to the body.

Mouthfeel is rather light for a stout but still pleasant. Nice creamy texture in the finish. Overall, I like the weizen yeast twist added to this beer as it adds a bit of a fruity touch that is quite pleasant with the bold flavors of roasted barley and dark crystal malts.

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Photo of srandycarter
3.85/5  rDev -1%
look: 3.5 | smell: 3.5 | taste: 4 | feel: 4 | overall: 4

A - Major dark brown, lots of tan head, slow to leave. Not much lace.

S - Roasted malt. Very light.

T - Chalk, roast malt, astringent.

M - Not very sweet, but not hugely bitter either, so the balance is pretty good.

D - Not my favorite. A little too chalky for me and tiring.

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Photo of GarthDanielson
3.88/5  rDev -0.3%
look: 4 | smell: 3.5 | taste: 4 | feel: 4 | overall: 4

Poured from a bomber into a tumbler pint, the beer is a dark, opaque, brown-to-black coloring with no head whatsoever. Aromas are roasted and coffee bitter, with a subtle fruit sweetness hidden throughout. Flavors are dark and bitter initially, and starts out like a standard stout, but it quickly lightens up, both in flavor and in body. A roasty grain backbone supports some dark fruit sweetness of cherry and grape. Smooth bodied but remaining light, the beer has a roasty, slightly smoked aftertaste leading to a clean, smooth, and slightly bitter finish. Decent brew.

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Photo of Jwale73
3.88/5  rDev -0.3%
look: 4 | smell: 3.5 | taste: 4 | feel: 4 | overall: 4

Thanks to Thirstybird (c/o EnronCFO) for sharing this one. 22oz. bomber served in a tumbler. Label describes this brew as a weizen-stout. Pours an inky black with a half inch, dense, mocha-colored head embedded with pinpricks and ringlets. Head eventually dissipates to half its original volume and retains its consistency. Some strands of lacing are revealed and remain during the tasting. Nose expresses mocha, a slightly metallic quality, black licorice, more coffee notes as it warms and a roasted character. The immediate impression I get off the initial quaff is smokey and rauch-like. Roasted, dark malts with some dark fruits (plums and prunes) are interwoven in the flavor profile and gives the brew a wine-like character. Mouthfeel is medium-light (lighter than anticipated, based on the flavor and color) with a light carbonation and a mild, oily texture. Flavorful and complex and easy drinking for the style. It almost reminds me of a Baltic Porter/American Stout hybrid.

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Photo of billab914
3.88/5  rDev -0.3%
look: 4 | smell: 3.5 | taste: 4 | feel: 4 | overall: 4

22oz bottle into a pint glass. It poured black in color with a thin tan head barely covering the top of the beer.

The aroma shows a good amount of chocolaty and roasty malt flavors to it. The wheat malts really come out in it as well and give it a bit of a sweeter, bready like presence.

The taste shows more of a chocolaty, cocoa flavor to it up front. Towards the finish more of the wheat malts start to come out and linger into the finish.

The mouthfeel is medium bodied and has a bit of a creamy, silky feel to it. Overall it was a pretty tasty and interesting beer. It had some very nice stout flavors to it and had a bit of a twist to it with the wheat malts. Very enjoyable beer overall.

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Photo of ppoitras
3.9/5  rDev +0.3%
look: 4 | smell: 4 | taste: 3.75 | feel: 4 | overall: 4

22oz bottle purchased as a single from somewhere localish.

Poured into an imperial pint glass, formed a 1/4" dark tan head over the opaque dark brown/black brew. Head is down to a skim promptly, with leggy lacing. Aroma is anise and dark malts.

Taste begins with a quick shot of dark sweetness, which quickly gives way to balancing bitterness, and then a touch of alcohol smoothing through the close. Mouthfeel is somewhat thin for the style, but goes down easy, and drinkability is good. Pretty sessionable for a hearty stout.

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Photo of Boriqua445
3.92/5  rDev +0.8%
look: 4 | smell: 3.75 | taste: 4 | feel: 3.75 | overall: 4

Wow. Great beer for a winter day. I went to grad school down the street from this brewery and watch them open up shop with just a small house wine bar and convert into the larger scale brewery they are today. Wish I could get my hands on this beer in Texas.

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Photo of gueuzeonhigh
3.92/5  rDev +0.8%
look: 3.5 | smell: 4 | taste: 4 | feel: 3.5 | overall: 4

I saw it as Weizen Stout and was a bit concerned I was about to drink what I call a "boutique beer". But it produced a very pleasant surprise. This one was a very active beer-- bottle fermented is right-- upon opening the bottle it became a geyser erupting with a tan brown foam. Poured a nice midnight new- moon black with a frothy head. Alas no lacing and a short lived head.

I was greeted by a nice nose-- almost bucolic, with hints of wheat and yeast.

The flavor was less "stout" and more weizen-- but nevertheless hops bitterness, yeast, malt-- it's sort of a heffe weizen wanna be Stout beer.

Mouthfeel is quite cordial, with effervescence that keeps the interest alive. The finish is kind of hasty ending in a sudden dissapearance of the flavor.

Drinkability is superior-- a relastively low ABV coupled by a cordial mouthfeel makes in my opinion for a very drinkable beer. I just with I had more than one bottle in stock.

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Photo of Urbancaver
3.93/5  rDev +1%
look: 4 | smell: 3.5 | taste: 4 | feel: 4.5 | overall: 4

Pours a very dark brown. Almost black. A nice amount of tan head. Looks great. Smells a bit muddled but a nice rich chocolatiness. Tastes smooth and roasty. A bit of bitterness on the tongue from the dark malts. Dry, thick. Enjoyable. Good mouthfeel. Overall quite enjoyable

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Photo of pjkelley82
3.95/5  rDev +1.5%
look: 3.25 | smell: 3.25 | taste: 4.25 | feel: 4.75 | overall: 4

Picked up a bottle from the brewery after sampling.

Poured dark with a thin head and nice lacing. Bubbles released a nice aroma of dark fruit, slight sweetness and very very light coffe. Overall smell was clean and smooth which will follow later. Slight lacing if any.

Smell was chocolaty with roast on the forward end of it...

Taste and moutfeel.... OK.... you start to drink it thinking it will be heavy and full feeling.. no... almost too smooth...nice flavor on the front end and little bitterness in the middle but when that baby goes down it's almost like it wasn't there... then you say I want more.... and to me thats what separates the good/bad beers. I like the slight almost unnoticeable wheat feel to it. It's definitely different especially when you look at it and judge it on it's color.. I was pleasantly surprised of how good it was...

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Ursa Minor from Rising Tide Brewing Company
3.89 out of 5 based on 161 ratings.
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