Cascade The Vine | Cascade Brewing / Raccoon Lodge & Brewpub

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Cascade The VineCascade The Vine

Brewed by:
Cascade Brewing / Raccoon Lodge & Brewpub
Oregon, United States

Style: American Wild Ale

Alcohol by volume (ABV): 9.73%

Availability: Rotating

Notes / Commercial Description:
"This Northwest Style Sour Ale is a blend of soured Triple, Blonde Quad and Golden ales that have been refermented with the fresh pressed juice of white wine grapes. The beer spent more than six months of lactic fermentation and aging in small oak barrels. 9.2% ABV" - Raccoon Lodge website

ABV seems to vary, between 8.33-9.73%

Added by msubulldog25 on 02-07-2009

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Reviews: 206 | Ratings: 879
Photo of Beginner2
3.87/5  rDev -6.5%
look: 4.25 | smell: 4 | taste: 3.75 | feel: 3.5 | overall: 4

Beware the wild yeast !
Looks give lots of foam and very quickly ... then all settles down into a sipping experience.
Smells are mostly the wine grapes, plus all that sour.
Tastes are both slightly sweet and then really sour. And while they come and go, sour wins.
Feel has very active carbonation, champagne-like; with an interesting tug between sweet and dry.
Overall, I brought it to a party of wine drinkers and got lots of turn-down faces, a few raised eye-brows and no converts. (But then, I am hardly a sour evangelist... being shy about those styles.)

Listed on the "1001 Beers To Have Before You Die", I think it probably should be there for making the difficult bridge between wine and beer. Glad I Had this one, but probably not again.

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Photo of Budinetz
4.58/5  rDev +10.6%
look: 4.25 | smell: 4.25 | taste: 5 | feel: 4.5 | overall: 4.25

Poured from the 750 ml bottle. 2015 Project.

Initially foams out of the bottle rather quickly so have this over a glass immediately as it has wild yeast. Pours a golden straw color with a thin, white head the dissipates instantly. Carbonation is that of champagne and a very fine ring of head clings to the sides of the glass. Lacing is present as I sip, however it does not still to the sides of he glass, it falls back into the beer level.

Smells of lactobacillous, funky white wine, white balsamic.

Tastes initially sweet like moscato but quickly changes direction into tart deliciousness. Very acidic, but quite flavorful.

Feels very prickly from the high carbonation level, and the acidity stings the tongue a bit. Does not drink like a 10.1% beer.

Overall a very well done American Wild Ale from Cascade. One of the best sour blondes I've had in a long time. I really enjoy what they do up there in Oregon and will continue to try their offerings whenever I can.


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Photo of superspak
4.25/5  rDev +2.7%
look: 4 | smell: 4 | taste: 4.5 | feel: 4.5 | overall: 4

750 ml bottle into tulip glass; 2015 vintage bottling, 10.1%. Violent gusher upon opening, lost a couple ounces. Pours lightly hazy pale golden yellow color with a 2 finger dense white head with good retention, that reduces to a small cap that lingers. Spotty soapy lacing clings on the glass, with a moderate amount of streaming carbonation retaining the cap. Aromas of big tart/sour lemon, lime, peach, pear, green apple, white grape, white wine, oak, hay, straw, funk, light pepper, wheat, cracker, light honey, light leather/vinegar, and yeast/oak earthiness. Damn nice aromas with great balance and complexity of fruity/funky/acidic yeast, grapes, wine barrel, and moderate pale malt notes; with great strength. Taste of big tart/sour lemon, lime, peach, pear, green apple, white grape, white wine, oak, hay, straw, funk, light pepper, wheat, cracker, light honey, light leather/vinegar, and yeast/oak earthiness. Moderate fruity/lactic tartness and light yeast/tannic oak spiciness on the finish; with lingering notes of lemon, lime, peach, pear, green apple, white grape, white wine, oak, hay, straw, funk, light pepper, wheat, cracker, and yeast/oak earthiness on the finish for a while. Fantastic complexity, robustness, and balance of fruity/funky/acidic yeast, grapes, wine barrel, and moderate pale malt flavors; with an awesome malt/tartness balance; and zero puckering/astringent flavors after the finish. Light-moderate dryness from tartness and carbonation, increasing through the glass. Medium-high carbonation and medium body; with a very smooth, moderately crisp/grainy/acidic, and lightly tannic balanced mouthfeel that is awesome. Minimal warming alcohol for 10.1%. Overall this is an outstanding fruited sour ale! All around awesome complexity, robustness, and balance of fruity/funky/acidic yeast, grapes, wine barrel, and moderate pale malt flavors; very smooth, crisp, and pretty refreshing to drink for the big abv, thanks to the modest acidity. Great brett complexity with balanced fruit, wine barrel, and malt flavors; with minimal lingering sweetness. Not overly funky or lactic, but solid amounts of both. A highly enjoyable offering all around.

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Photo of bump8628
4.4/5  rDev +6.3%
look: 4.25 | smell: 4.25 | taste: 4.5 | feel: 4.25 | overall: 4.5

Lovely beer, the grape character somehow manages to hold its own among the fermentation character - no hint of the almost 10% ABV and the oak stays out of the way to really let the complexities shine. Wheaty malt base, relatively mild funk and acid, bright white wine notes, juicy and almost tropical on the nose. Clean and bright for a barrel aged sour.

Glad I splurged on the $20 bottle. However, quite disappointed I lost almost half of it to a gusher.

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Photo of jaxon53
4.03/5  rDev -2.7%
look: 4 | smell: 4 | taste: 4 | feel: 4.25 | overall: 4

2015 project. Wow delicious beer, beautiful hazy strawish color. Nice tart flavor filled with tons of grape skin and funk.A touch of barrel buried deep in the back. A little short in the nose but still good. Nice light mouthfeel. Very drinkable. Only issue: huge gusher! Like Mentos in cola, hose down the kitchen gusher! Was able to salvage about 6 ounces.

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Photo of dabeerbuddha
4.35/5  rDev +5.1%
look: 4.25 | smell: 4.25 | taste: 4.5 | feel: 4.25 | overall: 4.25

Draft. Served chilled.
2015 The Vine
Transparent light straw colour. Very little head that hung like lace on the sides of the glass. White wine aroma. Fairly tart with very present wine tastes. Great mouth feel. Very wine like overall. Quite impressed.

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Photo of snaotheus
4.35/5  rDev +5.1%
look: 4 | smell: 4 | taste: 4.5 | feel: 4.5 | overall: 4.5

2015 project. Served in a wineglass, probably close to room temperature. It's been sitting in the glass for about an hour.

Pours a crystal clear yellow with a surprisingly good head retention. Nice solid white head still holding strong. Smell is tart, grapey, lemony. smells good.

Taste is fluffy lemony/grapey tartness. This is super good. Something about this makes me think of grape must.

Mouthfeel is very rich, velvety, smooth, the word fluffy again comes to mind. This is an excellent beer.

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Photo of dar482
4.53/5  rDev +9.4%
look: 4.25 | smell: 4.25 | taste: 4.75 | feel: 4.5 | overall: 4.5

2014 vintage.
Beer comes in a light to medium amber.
The flavor hits of sweet grape, with gentle tart and acidity of the fruit skin. This is complimented by a sweeter white wine, some oak. And dry white wine finish.

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Photo of HattedClassic
4.04/5  rDev -2.4%
look: 4.25 | smell: 4 | taste: 4 | feel: 4.25 | overall: 4

The beer pours a nice white and foamy head that dissipates rather quickly. The beer itself is a very nice looking clear medium gold that looks absolutely stunning. The overall appearance strongly resembles a chardonnay or a nice tripel.

The smell is good. There is a strong white grape mustiness and a slight sweet honey smell to it. The oak note comes out but it gets lost a little bit in the funkiness. However, they work very well together when it becomes noticeable.

The taste is good. It has a strong grape note and funkiness with a very light hop bitterness to it. The taste is a nice mixture of white grape mustiness and a nice green apple tartness to it. There is also a light honey sweetness that is barely there but comes out nicely. The oak also comes out a little bit

The feel is very good. It has a body that hovers between medium and light due to the moderate carbonation. The beer has a nice smooth feel to it that strongly resembles something you might find in a wine.

Overall, this is a very good beer from Cascade. The overall notes make this beer more of a carbonated viognier with the grape notes and funk. It isn't a difficult beer to drink but it's a bit basic for people looking for something more interesting and too funky for those who aren't into sours. Otherwise, go for it but be careful, this thing likes to explode if you're not careful.

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Photo of vfgccp
3.76/5  rDev -9.2%
look: 3.5 | smell: 3.75 | taste: 3.75 | feel: 3.5 | overall: 4

2013 bottle, drank Feb 7, 2016.

A - Pours with 2 fingers of frothy white head but with virtually no retention and lace. Sediment laden bright gold body (even after months of vertical storage)

S - Bright, sour nose with tart peach, grape skins, cilantro, and fresh olives.

T - A firm, classic American Wild level of sourness opens the profile with grape skins, muscat grape, oak, and honey blondies.

M - Smooth, medium body.

O - A nice take on the style.

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Photo of rodbeermunch
4.34/5  rDev +4.8%
look: 4 | smell: 4.25 | taste: 4.5 | feel: 4.25 | overall: 4.25

Dark golden color, looks excited. White grape jumps out around lactic woodness.

White grape continues to dominate, the quad aspect of this beer thankfully doesn't come through, the lighter parts of it allow the white grape to keep it going.. Plenty of white wine like notes. Dry finish. Deceptively powerful and acidic.

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Photo of Phil-Fresh
4.18/5  rDev +1%
look: 4.25 | smell: 4.25 | taste: 4.25 | feel: 4 | overall: 4

2013 Edition -- Draft, Oct 2015

A: Strong white wine grape aroma accompanied by a light funkiness.

A: Straw colored, clear with massive head that dissipates quickly with no retention.

T: Grape flavor, a bit reminiscent of a white wine. Some esters present. Funky, but not overly sour.

M: Light bodied with light carbonation.

O: Enjoyable, but not mind-blowing. The white wine grapes are quite evident, but aren’t quite as showcased as I would have liked. The triple and quad styles are pretty powerful and provide a great backbone for the beer, but almost overshadow the grapes. For whatever reason, the funk flavors feel ever so slightly off.

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Photo of Dustoff21
3.96/5  rDev -4.3%
look: 4.25 | smell: 3.75 | taste: 4 | feel: 4 | overall: 4

2012 Project. Pours with great color, but zero head. Almost wondered if this project started to skunk.

Appearance- Great, deep orange colors. Almost goldenrod in nature.

Smell- Slight hints of grape. Verging on the border of old wine

Taste- Crisp, clean, still wants to be vibrant but obviously losing its character.

Feel- Lack of carbonation, bottle may not have been stored properly

Overall- A solid sour, far from the amazement of say Jester King or Destihl, but none the less a good drinker. Nice sour to start off a new sour drinker.

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Photo of BostonBrewRu
4.68/5  rDev +13%
look: 4.5 | smell: 4.5 | taste: 4.75 | feel: 4.75 | overall: 4.75

So I let this one age a year. I was planning on longer but a funky mold was growing around the cork. Beer was great, still fresh, no off flavors just slightly more mellow. This is still one of my favorite beers from them, now if only they distributed this instead of those stupid fruity sours! I would pay the $50 for this.

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Photo of brentk56
3.77/5  rDev -8.9%
look: 3.5 | smell: 4 | taste: 3.75 | feel: 3.5 | overall: 3.75

2011 Project

Appearance: Pours golden verging on amber, fairly clear; initially, the head looks impressive but it fritters away rather quickly; no lacing, but a steady stream of bubbles rises from the center

Smell: Sweet white wine grape, apricot, tart apple and oak

Taste: Sweet white wine grape flavors, verging on fortified wine, with apricot and vanilla sugar developing; in the middle, the tart side appears, as does the oak; not much funk here and the sweeter flavors tend to overpower the sour ones

Mouthfeel: Medium to full body with low carbonation

Overall: I wasn't expecting this profile from a Cascade sour, frankly; it was somewhat like a French white wine drinker encountering German whites for the first time; it is interesting but not really what I am looking for in a sour

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Photo of Mantooth
4.23/5  rDev +2.2%
look: 4.25 | smell: 4.25 | taste: 4.25 | feel: 4 | overall: 4.25

Poured on draft at Cascade:

Pours a rich golden hue with a fluffy white head and light lacing. The nose is rich with lemon zest and tart fruit, apples and grapes. There's a definite oak presence as well and the taste follows suit. Quite funky and delicious with a hint of pineapple as well. They nailed the carbonation here and the brew is very well balanced. Wonderful beer I look forward to trying again.

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Photo of Stevedore
3.64/5  rDev -12.1%
look: 4 | smell: 3.75 | taste: 3.5 | feel: 4 | overall: 3.5

On tap at Cascade Brewing Barrelhouse in Portland, Oregon.

Pours a clear yellow body, half finger white head, minimal retention and lacing. Smells of grapefruit, sweet citrus, raisins, grain, oak, moderate lactic acidity. Flavour is actually quite sweet, with a combination of mild dark fruit, graininess, vinous grape flavours making it quite sweet, with a bit of citrus, oak, a bit of leather, and a lot of acetic acidity. Fairly intense, but not to my liking. Mouthfeel is medium bodied, substantial, sweet and sour at the same time, favoring the sweetness. Overall, too sweet for me, though it does deliver a nice puckering sourness.

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Photo of Alieniloquium
3.53/5  rDev -14.7%
look: 4 | smell: 3.5 | taste: 3.5 | feel: 3.5 | overall: 3.5

750 mL bottle poured into a snifter.

Appearance - Clear orange body. Nice white head.

Smell - Lots of grapefruit juice. Light acidity. A bit citrusy.

Taste - Sweet grape. Immediately sour. Oak. Starts to get a little acetic in the finish.

Mouthfeel - Medium body. Sweet and sour. Well carbonated.

Overall - Tasty. I've had this a number of times and I'm not sure why I never rated it.

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Photo of ONovoMexicano
4.44/5  rDev +7.2%
look: 4.5 | smell: 4.25 | taste: 4.5 | feel: 4.5 | overall: 4.5

From the 750mL bottle into a Belgian tulip.

The pour produces a fizzy loud head that rushes upwards but quickly dissipates. The body is dark golden with excellent clarity and a strady, robust carbonation. Quite elegant. 4.5

It's a tad funky and earthy, tart and faintly acidic. There's some orchard fruit aroma that joins a potent white grape juice smell. 4.25

Very close in taste to what the nose hinted at: white grape juice, white wine, plum, apple and cherry. Orchard meets winery. The taste lingers like a crisp apple and a sip of white wine. 4.5

There's excellent consistency from smell to taste to feel; it's funky, earthy, tart and vinous. The carbonation is mellow and the brew drinks crisply before finishing dry. 4.5

Outstanding. I'd serve this to any sour fan and still get many a wine-drinker to enjoy it.

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Photo of AgentMunky
4.07/5  rDev -1.7%
look: 3.25 | smell: 3.75 | taste: 4.25 | feel: 4.75 | overall: 4

Poured from a 750mL bottle into a Teku glass. 2012 project.

A: Golden and hazy, with a surprising (and, given New Year's Eve, disappointing) lack of effervescence.

S: Fruity and tart. Candy-like. Slightly muted.

T/M: Scintillating and brilliant! More beery than anticipated, with a sharp lactic acid bite through the very obvious (and *almost* too-sweet grapes). It's a great wild ale, with zest and zing to ring in a new year.

O: Enjoyable, but not surprising. A solid sour entry, and perhaps even a good starting point for newbies. Recommended.

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Photo of kojevergas
3.58/5  rDev -13.5%

2013 project. 9.30% ABV. 750ml brown glass bottle with hood-and-wire (unbranded, gold) cap over a cork purchased directly from Cascade and served into a Lost Abbey teku in high altitude Castle Rock, CO. Reviewed live. Expectations are high given the brewery.

Served cold and allowed to warm over the course of consumption.

No bubble show forms as it's poured.

This is a mess to pour - the cork was impossible to remove by hand, so I tried pliers - which broke the cork in half. A churchkey removed the cork, but beer quickly surged out, spilling over my bar. Definitely seems overcarbonted especially when you consider it's been aging over a year at cellar temp.

HEAD: Pours a two finger wide off-white colour head - fizzy and violent as hell - which reduces inside 1 minute, though for about half of that it's only fizzing on one side....odd.

After completely disappearing, the head rekindles itself, fizzing back into life for 2 minutes more (still on only one side of the glass) before dying again - completely of its own volition. I've never seen anything like this.

No lacing sticks to the sides of the teku.

BODY: Body is a vibrant lively brilliant gold with blond and copper hues. The carbonation bubbles are magnificent in this colour of body. You could photograph this beer for a magazine cover; it looks incredible. I can't wait to try it.

That said, it does seem direly overcarbonated. But it's a unique appearance - both in terms of head and (admittedly less so) the body. It's definitely alive, but no yeast particulate is visible.

AROMA: Lovely. Gorgeous blond malts, impeccable white oak tones, white grapes with an ideal sweetness/dryness balance, golden malts, Belgian pale malts, clean crisp full evocative barley, a kiss of juicy fruity hop notes, and marvelous wild yeasts as well as bacterial notes - lactobacillus sure (albeit seemingly not as much as in Cascade Kriek), and ample sourness - about a 6-7/10. There are also some barrel sugars and grape skin notes. I also find a note redolent of pinesol, which works surprisingly well here.

This amazing aroma reminds me of the best Belgian blond sours I've encountered. Really incredible stuff; I'm dying for the first sip. It's mild in strength, but boy is it evocative. The dryness/sweetness balance seems ideal.

TASTE: Blond malts, golden malts, and Belgian pale malts comprise the easily influenced neutral foundation. White grapeskin enters in the early second act, bolstered by the building presence of lacto-induced sourness as the second act progresses. Wild yeasts and bacterial notes complement the lactobacillus well, evoking a truly alive, wild brew.

The moderate tartness of the grape coupled with the intrinsic grape flavours doesn't really fit into this flavour profile as well as I anticipated given the aromatics, but it doesn't feel out of place per se - perhaps just a bit too intense. In a beer so subtle, those notes are noticeably dominant, and while they don't break the cohesion of the beer, they do distract from the gestalt build as a whole.

Disappointingly, the sourness is a relatively mild 5-6/10 in terms of intensity. Cascade's other more sour beers (e.g. Cascade Kriek) offer more depth of flavour, but this beer has good flavour amplitude and duration.

The guiding oak tone throughout the beer is lovely, and bolsters its already impressive cohesion. The neutral barrel sugars found in the aroma are largely absent here, though I do think the beer's balance errs a bit too far on the sweet side. Dryer grapes might fix this minor issue.

What shocks is the absence of alcohol presence, which is damn impressive at 9.30%; how does Cascade produce these high-alcohol sours without seriously compromising balance?

Overall, it's a very likeable flavour profile with some excellent elements, but doesn't quite come together the way a world-class beer would.

TEXTURE: Crisp, overcarbonated, and smooth, with a perfect balance of dryness/wetness. Medium-bodied. Towards the back end, it's fairly smacky on the palate, but I'd love more of that along with more sourness. Thickness is apt for the flavour profile. Fairly acidic.

Good overall presence on the palate. This texture supports the flavour profile well and feels naturally complementary, but it's not a perfect marriage of texture to taste; it could be improved.

OVERALL: As it warms, I do pick up some neutral barrel sugars and some lambic-esque cereals/grains right on the finish, which aren't particularly welcome. This is a very drinkable enjoyable sour from Cascade, and the discerning drinker will be impressed by how well it hides its ABV. That said, Cascade brews world-class beers, but this isn't one of them. A good-but-not-great sour that isn't worth its high pricetag outside of its state of origin, The Vine is a beer I doubt I'll return to but that might be incredible with serious age on it. More solid work from one of the USA's best sour producers.


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Photo of twiggamortis420
4.11/5  rDev -0.7%
look: 4 | smell: 4.25 | taste: 4 | feel: 4 | overall: 4.25

750 mL pours a hazed gold color with a bright white head that snap-crackle-pops its way down to a small collar.

Nose is very much white wine - like a pinot gris. Maybe some grape kool-aid powder too. Crazy good.

Tastes like wine flavored SweeTarts...very nice. Not overly sour, but walks the line between dry tartness and sweet grains. Bubbly carbonation almost gives it a champagne feel. It is very good. Not my favorite Cascade, but another winner for sure.

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Photo of MDDMD
4.17/5  rDev +0.7%
look: 4.25 | smell: 4 | taste: 4.25 | feel: 4 | overall: 4.25

A-golden color with a nice white head and a little lacing

S-lemon, sour grapes, funk, tart apples, oak

T-grains, tart apples, sour grapes, little lemon, oak, little pineapple, funk, slight vinous character

F-medium body with lively carbonation, crisp and tart, alcohol well-integrated

O-really enjoyed this sour ale, good flavors and barrel notes

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Photo of brianmandell
3.69/5  rDev -10.9%
look: 3.75 | smell: 3.5 | taste: 3.75 | feel: 3.75 | overall: 3.75

2012 Project; Hazy golden pour. Medicinal welch's grape, tart and earthy aroma. Nice oaky flavor and lactic acidity on the front end. The grape is present and overly sweet up front with a strong white wine like alcohol backbone. The flavor dies out with a mild earthiness. Carbonated with large bubbles which didn't help the mouthfeel. I ended up drinking a glass and switching to the white wine my wife had opened. Not a bad beer by any means just disappointing given the price and my expectations. I wasn't expecting Vigneronne but this beer really needs some funk to balance out the sweetness and add some complexity.

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Photo of Axnjxn
3.97/5  rDev -4.1%
look: 3.75 | smell: 4.25 | taste: 4 | feel: 3.75 | overall: 3.75

750ml bottle into a FW tulip. 2012 project

Pours a dark golden color with not much of a head. didnt "pop" when i opened it either. Smell is very much like white grapes, much like welches white grape juice! Taste is very similar as well. It has only a tiny bit of tartness to it, definitely the least sour tasting cascade ive had. The white grape flavor is very prominent and pronounced and it lasts through the finish and lingers. Its definitely what it promises. No tartness almost at all is quite a shock..not sure as intended? body is medium and carbonation is quite low. I will have to try another bottle to see if the tartness is just off in this one. Overall though the flavor is on point... maybe better fresh

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Cascade The Vine from Cascade Brewing / Raccoon Lodge & Brewpub
4.14 out of 5 based on 879 ratings.
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