Wild Heaven Beer

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Smoke Beer
3.86 | pDev: 17.1%
Wild Heaven Beer
Georgia, United States
Retired (no longer brewed)
Very Good
Notes: Smoked sour
Reviews: 9 | Ratings: 26
Photo of Jadjunk
3.73/5  rDev -3.4%
look: 3 | smell: 3.75 | taste: 3.75 | feel: 4 | overall: 3.75

"A truly new beer style is a rare thing. But Funkenrauch is born of brewmaster Eric's obsession with understanding beer on a molecular level. A 100% smoked malt beer shouldn't taste so bright and light - but the addition of brettanomyces eats up much of the smoky phenols that could have overwhelmed the palate, leaving behind a sour smoked beer that's unlike any we've ever tried." Brewed in the style of an American Wild Ale brewed with smoked malt, aged in Bordeaux Barrels. Available in 750ml. bottles and on seasonal draft.

Poured from a 750ml. bottle to a snifter glass.

(Appearance) Moderate gusher alert; pours a pearl white head of a crisp, foamy consistency over a moderately hazy bright amber body with moderate sediment in tow and lively carbonation. Retention is below average and lacing is light and spotty. 3

(Smell) Rich, complex meaty peat smoke nose with undertones of toasted oak tannin for an assertively smoky aroma. Moderate souring acidity has a slight impact in the aroma, generating sweet fruit undertones, lightly spicy phenols and a mild acidity. Despite this, the primary focus remains the smoked malt, which is a dominating feature in this beer. Potency is strong. 3.75

(Taste) The smokiness of the beer manages to share the stage with the fruitiness, acidity and funk of the Brettanomyces addition in the flavor, while still carrying the bulk of the beer's flavor. This is no doubt a beer for smoked malt lovers, rich peat smoke, intensely roasted grains and meaty richness manages a curious compliment of tangy fruit compounds, almost generating an Applewood smoked quality, but less subdued, and certainly noticeable in this beer. Very unique, and enjoyable for smoked beer lovers. 3.75

(Mouthfeel) Texture is slick, silky, smooth, mildly dry. Carbonation is medium, generating a medium frothiness and a moderately crisp finish. Body is medium/heavy for the style, medium/heavy overall. Balance is nearly even sweet to smoky and tangy acidic. Alcohol presence is light and there are no off characters. 4

(Overall) No doubt one of the more unique beers in Wild Heaven's experimental lineup, and a particularly enjoyable one for me. Smoked beers are not for everybody, and this one dials up the smokiness very aggressively, but the Brettanomyces character does lend some additional complexity that cuts through that peat smoke for a nicely rounded beer, even through the intense smoky flavor. A nice fall-season option, I think this beer is unique enough for Wild Heaven to justify keeping around, although 750ml. may be a bit of a heroic dose of smoke for some. Consider splitting a bottle to be on the safe side. 3.75

Wild Heaven Craft Beers'
Funkenrauch: Smoked Wild Ale

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Photo of acmurphy696
2.48/5  rDev -35.8%
look: 5 | smell: 4.5 | taste: 1 | feel: 3 | overall: 2

While admire the audacity of a smoked malt beverage, I cannot endorse the final product.
This beer worked for me in every area except the taste.
As adventurous as I believe myself to be about beers, the taste of pureed smoked ham is just not my bag.
But at least it's an attempt at something, which is more than you can say about a lot of other beers.

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Photo of cjgator3
4/5  rDev +3.6%
look: 4 | smell: 4 | taste: 4 | feel: 4 | overall: 4

The smell completely reminds me of honey baked smoked ham, I'm not a huge fan or sours but the smokiness was spot on and I really dug the mix of flavors in this one.

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Photo of shivtim
4.31/5  rDev +11.7%
look: 4 | smell: 4.25 | taste: 4.5 | feel: 4 | overall: 4.25

I like wild ales, and I like rauchbier, and was both intrigued and skeptical of this brew. I ended up being very pleasantly surprised. It pours out hazy gold color, and is very carbonated. Had some foam-over when I opened the bottle. The smell is mostly smoked malt, a little bit of barnyard funkiness. Taste is great. It's not overpowering, it's just a really good balance between a rich smoky flavor and a complex, tart, wild fruit flavor. Very drinkable. I'll be having this one again.

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Photo of ChainGangGuy
3.52/5  rDev -8.8%
look: 4 | smell: 3.75 | taste: 3.25 | feel: 3.75 | overall: 3.5

22 ounce bottle - $12.99 at Bullock's Wine & Spirits in Marietta, Georgia.

Appearance: Lightly hazed, bubbly gold body with a third-of-an-inch of tight white foam.

Smell: Nosewise, it's predominately smoky.

Taste: Tastewise, it's also predominately smoky, though you do get a sense of the funky lil' beer beneath the coating, meaty smoke qualities such as hints of hay-hewn malts, a light sourness and some faux-apple fruitiness.

Mouthfeel: Medium-bodied. Medium-high carbonation.

Overall: An interesting combination, but the smoke, for me, was the clear winner, running the funkiness off the road.

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Photo of StraightNoChaser
4.4/5  rDev +14%
look: 4 | smell: 4.5 | taste: 4.5 | feel: 4.25 | overall: 4.25

look: Light Golden, clear with loads of rising bubbles. Thick white head.
smell: Wow, they ain't kiddin. Smoke and funk, with some light fruit. Most interesting nose I've sniffed in quite some time.
taste: much like the nose. The smoke is prominent but the funk holds it's on. The finish is earthy, spicy and fruity.

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Photo of Daniellobo
4.23/5  rDev +9.6%
look: 4.25 | smell: 4.25 | taste: 4.25 | feel: 4 | overall: 4.25

One of the most fun beers I've had in a while. Apologies for the lack of time for a proper review but such a brew deserves a small note.

Provocative blend of smoke and funk, sure enough, more smoke than funk. Heavy on the smoke only those already into rauchbiers may care... But the idea of an only-smoke-malt ale with brett smoothing plenty of the phenols is intriguing and it does work. Funk struggles a bit but holds up an interested freshness under the smoke. Palate works pretty well for an initial serving but might get tiresome on a second serving. Picked this up on a recent trip to Atlanta, so I'd like to pick another one to compare.

It notes Bordeaux barrel-aging and while that may have contributed to the solid character of the beer those nuances are a bit lost.

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Photo of Ga_liquor
1.54/5  rDev -60.1%
look: 5 | smell: 1 | taste: 1 | feel: 2 | overall: 2

Longtime lurker of beer advocate. This beer here made me finally made me make an account.

This beer is absolutely vial. You'd have to pay ME to drink this again.

I work in a liquor store here in Georgia. I am familiar with all of our Georgia beers. They're great. Just visited Creature Comforts in Athens the other week. I've drank more beers than the average person, etc.

This beer is 95% smoke. 5% sour/wild. It COULD be an amazing beer but I feel they messed up. Totally.

I've had their height of civilization - amazing. Dionysus - amazing. emergency drinking beer - okay/great, and their older ones. All good around. But this beer is a monster.

You're basically drinking liquid Canadian bacon/ham/bacon.

I appreciate complex beers but this beer is so horrid. It could be amazing if it was 95% sour and 5% smoked. I think that's an awesome idea, but this was executed very poorly. Very, very, poorly. I still plan to visit the brewery since it's not far from me, but geez. This beer was bad.

L: golden body, light head
S: BACON, artificial ham/bacon dog treats, Canadian bacon. Sickening smells.
T: tastes like it smells. Seriously. Just 10 times more pungent on your tongue.
F: smooth, it goes down nice. I'll give it that.
O: if you like the smell of meat dog treats, this is the beer for you. Don't get me wrong I LOVEEEE bacon, ham, meats, etc. Just don't put it in my beer. I want this beer to be successful. It needs a lot more sour and a lot less "smoke". Roommate and I couldn't even finish the bomber. I was so hyped to try this beer since everything they make is amazing. But this...this was an abomination.

Drink at your own risk. Just trying to save you the 12-16$ depending on your store. Will not buy again and I'll also be telling my boss not to order a case or three.

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Photo of ThickNStout
3.96/5  rDev +2.6%
look: 4 | smell: 4.25 | taste: 3.75 | feel: 3.5 | overall: 4.25

750mL bottle from Sprayberry Bottle Shop (Marietta, GA). 13.99. 2015 edition, just hit shelves this past week (8/15). Served in a Wild Heaven snifter.

Pours a near opaque, deep copper tinged gold with almost two fingers of white head. A razor thin halo persists, leaving only a few scattered bits of lace.

Crazy blend of aromas. Peated malt, funky, earthy farmhouse, spoiled grains and some vaguely fruity sweetness. It's a really interesting mix that I keep coming back for repeated whiffs in my vain efforts to understand.

Whoa. There is such a crazy mix of flavors here unlike anything I've encountered. Peat, earthen funk, faint red wine, hints of apple-like fruit skins, vague licorice, mildly soured grain, wet hay and a slight herbal, grassy quality. Ultimately no matter what I can describe this has no comparison. The calming effect that the smoked malt and Brettanomyces have on each other creates an original and easy drinking quaff.

Medium light body with mild carbonation. Aftertaste continues that strange amalgamation of vaguely sweet fruited smoked funk.

Wild Heaven's Funkenrauch may confuse my palate a bit but is thoroughly enjoyable for the trip it took me on. It is not often that something so style-defying comes along so this is a brew that deserves some credit. I definitely plan on procuring more to share this experience with others.

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Funkenrauch from Wild Heaven Beer
Beer rating: 86 out of 100 with 26 ratings