Cascade Brewing / Raccoon Lodge & Brewpub

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American Wild Ale
Ranked #963
Ranked #5,532
4.02 | pDev: 10.45%
Cascade Brewing / Raccoon Lodge & Brewpub
Oregon, United States
Notes: This NW sour ale is a blend of wheat and blond ales aged in oak barrels for up to 14 months with strawberries and vanilla beans.
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Reviews: 70 | Ratings: 513
Photo of MonDak_Joe1953
3.73/5  rDev -7.2%
look: 4 | smell: 3.5 | taste: 3.75 | feel: 4 | overall: 3.75

750ml bottle. Caged and corked bottle. 2015 Project vintage.
Murky amber/orange colored boy. Fizzy white bubbles upon pouring, what is left is a bubble fed ring. No lacing.
Aroma of strawberry, vanilla, and oak barrel.
Sour taste of strawberry fruit with vanilla. Oak barrel is there too. Dry at the end.
Medium mouth feel. Close to a tooth scraper. Good carbonation.
The strawberry attempts to inject some sweetness but the oak and vanilla tamp this down, which allows the sour aspect to dominate. Quite acidic. Behind it all there is some funk. Different overall, but well worth exploring.

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Photo of WickedBeer
3.84/5  rDev -4.5%
look: 3.75 | smell: 4 | taste: 3.75 | feel: 4 | overall: 3.75

2015 Project, draft pour. Loosa Brews, Tuscaloosa AL. Kegged 10.25.16.

Pours a deep, burnt amber yellow flecked with peachy pink. . Low carb, but a small soft ring of head settles around the taster glass.

The nose is bursting with tart, underripe strawberries and toasted oak. The barrels really impart a subtle but noticeable smokiness to the aroma. A tinge of horseblanket funk hits the nose on the back end.. subtly complex but so nice.

Again, those oak barrels are the main attraction in the flavors as well. A present smoke, coupled with a very tart but familiar strawberry flavor. Not getting much if any vanilla anymore, but it was an adjunct that I don’t feel was ever necessary in the first place. Mildly herbaceous in the finish.

Thin, tart , and dry, with a low seltzery carbonation and a smooth finish.

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Photo of Roguer
4.24/5  rDev +5.5%
look: 4 | smell: 4.25 | taste: 4.25 | feel: 4.25 | overall: 4.25

Tons of strawberry on the nose, nice funk and sour. More of a fruity melange on the palate.

Delicious, but probably a let down for people hoping for huge strawberry flavor.

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Photo of Sabtos
3.33/5  rDev -17.2%
look: 4 | smell: 3.5 | taste: 3.25 | feel: 3 | overall: 3.25

The body is super shiny like an amber gem with a creamy, persistent film and a thick collar with raised edges.

This smells exactly like a jar of organic strawberry jam I had in the fridge that went super funky and had this odd, airy and nutty aroma to it. It's really unusually intense.

Taste translates almost identically, but sweeter, with a green, herbal accent via a thin to medium body with light carbonation, a slightly stinging sour exhale and a dry finish.

I've had very similar experiences with a number of well-regarded strawberry sours now. I'm just not sure I really like what happens when strawberries are used in this style, but maybe the age funked this up even more!

2013 vintage

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Photo of TheSeeker
4.09/5  rDev +1.7%
look: 4.5 | smell: 4.25 | taste: 4 | feel: 4 | overall: 4

Pretty unusual beer. It blends strawberry fruit with a dirty cheese barnyard funk sour. Overall it's a noble acheivement, definitely different than you'd expect for a strawberry sour, well worth a try.

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Photo of Koral
4.4/5  rDev +9.5%
look: 4.5 | smell: 4.5 | taste: 4.5 | feel: 4 | overall: 4.25

2014 Vintage

Look: Golden with slight reddish/pinkish hues
Smell: Strong fruit aroma, strawberry, acidic bite
Taste: Strawberry, strong acidity, clean finish in the aftertaste
Feel: a little on the dry side, but still very refreshing

Worth the buy

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Photo of superspak
3.7/5  rDev -8%
look: 4 | smell: 4 | taste: 3.5 | feel: 4 | overall: 3.5

750 ml bottle into tulip glass, 2015 vintage bottling. Pours slightly hazy orange/copper color with a foamy light pink head with okay retention, that reduces to nothing pretty quickly. Minimal lacing on the glass. Aromas of big juicy strawberries, sour lemon, lime, green apple, raspberry, pepper, oak, vanilla, hay, straw, musty funk, leather, light white vinegar, wheat, bread, and yeast/oak earthiness. Very nice aromas with good balance and complexity of fruity/funky/acidic yeast, strawberry/vanilla, oak, and moderate malt notes; with great strength. Taste of big juicy strawberries, sour lemon, lime, green apple, raspberry, pepper, oak, vanilla, hay, straw, musty funk, leather, light white vinegar, wheat, bread, and yeast/oak earthiness; with some light plastic/band-aid off flavors after the finish. Moderate fruity/acidic sourness and light-moderate yeast/tannic oak spiciness on the finish; with lingering notes of strawberry, sour lemon, lime, green apple, raspberry, pepper, oak, vanilla, hay, straw, musty funk, leather, white vinegar, and yeast/oak earthiness on the finish for a while. Nice complexity, robustness, and balance of fruity/funky/acidic yeast, strawberry/vanilla, oak, and moderate malt flavors; with a nice sour/tannic/spiciness balance, and no astringent sourness after the finish. A bit unpleasant from the off flavors, but not horrible or overwhelming. High carbonation and medium body; with a very smooth, crisp, dry, acidic, lightly tannic, and slightly grainy mouthfeel that is nice. Minimal warming alcohol for 7.1%. Overall this is a nice fruited sour ale style. All around good complexity, robustness, and balance of fruity/funky/acidic yeast, strawberry/vanilla, oak, and moderate malt flavors; very smooth, crisp, and fairly refreshing to drink despite the high acidity. This would have been far more impressive without the finishing off flavors; but was still nicely enjoyable.

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

A: Poured into a Duvel tulip to a deep orange that's a little pink with a two finger head that retains well and leaves some lacing
S: Smells of fresh strawberries with a little funk and some sourness
T: Taste is tart up front with some strawberry and a nice bit of barnyard funk, hints of wood and band aids as well. Swallow is a slight sourness with some lingering strawberry and funk.
M: This beer is medium in body with adequate carbonation and a dry finish
O: Overall this one is pretty good. Strawberry beers are kind of hard to pull off but this one works fairly well. Decent flavors and some nice complexity keep things interesting. The beer has a really nice sourness to it as well that isn't overpowering.

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Photo of Ciocanelu
3.55/5  rDev -11.7%
look: 3.5 | smell: 4 | taste: 3.25 | feel: 3.25 | overall: 3.75

Murky dark orange color, almost no head. Aroma is fruity with lots of farmhouse notes like barnyard, hay, damp cellar. Taste is somehow phenolic with some nail polish. Tart, fruity, acidic and dry.

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Photo of Budinetz
3.06/5  rDev -23.9%
look: 4 | smell: 3 | taste: 3 | feel: 3 | overall: 3

2014 project. Stored at cellar temperature.

This one was a gusher! Be careful when opening.
Super Phenolic and very astringent. It's like drinking a bandaid that has been puréed and fermented with strawberries. Then I kept sipping...and sipping...and it changed!!! It became more drinkable and actually somewhat enjoyable. Still nothing like some of the other flavors I have had from Cascade but not the worst either. I don't know if this would age well or not but perhaps some additional months in the cellar would have done a bottle good.



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Photo of Fcolle2
4.15/5  rDev +3.2%
look: 4.25 | smell: 4.25 | taste: 4 | feel: 4.25 | overall: 4.25

Pours light red with a light brown backbone. Aromas of strawberry an interesting wild funky musty aroma over a grainy malt atoma. Flavors of strawberry, lactic well balanced sour, hints of oak and vanilla. Some wild yeast on the exhale. Nicely balanced

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

Pours a light reddish color with pink colored head. Vanilla, oak, light strawberry fruit, funk, and tartness on the nose; follows onto the palate. Light to medium bodied. Finishes tart and dry.

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Photo of biboergosum
3.86/5  rDev -4%
look: 3.75 | smell: 4 | taste: 3.75 | feel: 3.75 | overall: 4

750ml, caged and corked bottle, @7.56% ABV, from the 2014 Project. I don't believe that I've ever had a strawberry-based sour ale before.

This beer pours a hazy, medium orange-brick amber colour, with a teeming tower of puffy, rather loosely foamy, and fairly fizzy off-white head, which leaves some streaky island atoll lace around the glass as it quickly dissolves.

It smells of musty green strawberries, some vanilla-tinged red wine barrel woodiness, a middling sour funkiness, a twinge of spoiled milk, grainy pale malt, and further dusty, earthy, and estery bitter notes. The taste is tart red fruit - more cherry and underripe raspberry than the titular berry - gritty and funky yeast/bacteria, a sturdy enough bready pale malt graininess, some increasingly phenolic vanillan woody notes, free-range lactic acid, and a further earthy rhubarb and green leafy acerbity.

The bubbles are very persistent in their palpable fizzy and sternly frothy measures, the body just on the low side of a typical middleweight, and plainly smooth, if you're capable of applying more than a soupcon of cognitive dissonance to the various lurking astringencies. It finishes mostly dry, the strawberry there, of course, but in a reduced, deconstructed as shit manner.

Overall, not a bad sour fruit ale, the usual metrics about this sort of thing that piss me off conspicuous by their welcome absence. Not particularly balanced, as the sour, musty, and funky notes skew things in their direction, of course, but 'less than much' - and thus drinkability (such as it is, for 40 bucks a bottle) is achieved!

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Photo of 303beer
4.44/5  rDev +10.4%
look: 4 | smell: 4.25 | taste: 4.5 | feel: 4.75 | overall: 4.5

Just popped the cork on the 2014. Pours with vigorous carbonation. The color is somewhere between peach and strawberry with a bit of cloudiness. The nose is sour or tart but I'm leaning towards sour with hints of strawberry. The head is thin and white it formed a ring around the glass and is reluctant to leave. The taste is strawberry for a second then the pure sour kicks in. Oh my it's so clean and sour. Awesome. Just an awesome feeling on the tounge then the sour mellows back into the strawberry and you have a nice balance on your tounge. Great job.

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Photo of mactrail
2.51/5  rDev -37.6%
look: 3 | smell: 2 | taste: 2.75 | feel: 2.5 | overall: 2.5

On tap at the Cascade tasting room on Belmont. This is the 2013 project.

Smell is something chemical with extraterrestrial fermentation going on. Some kiind of Chinese medicine. I keep thinking of spar varnish. Color is tawny sherry with no foam.

Intense flavor from another universe. There is a totally bizarre light funk taste. The woody barrel taste seems to be the residual aftertaste of some kind of plastics industry. This is kind of fascinating in a horrifying way, but a few sips was the most I could manage.

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Photo of mynie
3.58/5  rDev -10.9%
look: 3.5 | smell: 4.25 | taste: 3.25 | feel: 4 | overall: 3.25

Pours like you left a Fruit Roll Up in a glass of fizzy water--which is to say, not bad. Pinkish.

Smells nearly very good. Tart brett, rich strawberries, and then a super cool funkiness. High hopes, here.

And those hopes are dashed in the flavor. It's not bad. It's kinda good, once I get used to it. But it's a goddamn mess from start to finish. I think maybe they added vanilla to blot out some of the bacterial weirdness? Maybe? I dunno.

I like what Cascade does. Experimentation is great and sometimes it works out wonderfully. But I wish they didn't charge so much for the chance to sample it.

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Photo of Stevedore
4.1/5  rDev +2%
look: 4 | smell: 4 | taste: 4.25 | feel: 4 | overall: 4

On tap at Cascade Brewing Barrelhouse.

Pours a medium pink-reddish body, half finger white head with good retention, minimal lacing. Smells of authentic strawberry, and quite a bit of it. A bit of oak, slight leather, but for the most part it is full of strawberry aromas. Flavour is similarly strawberry forward; it was very present and hard to miss; but easy to enjoy. Strawberry, oak, a bit of leather. Mouthfeel is medium bodied, crisp and dry, refreshing, full of strawberries. Overall, one of the most authentic strawberry flavoured beers I've ever had. I liked this one a fair amount.

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Photo of Phil-Fresh
4.08/5  rDev +1.5%
look: 4.25 | smell: 4.25 | taste: 4 | feel: 4 | overall: 4

2014 Bottle -- June 2015

A: Upfront strawberry aroma with faint malt sweetness and oak

A: Orange-ish, pink color some clarity, but is a touch hazy with low head retention

T: Initial Strawberry flavor, leads into some oak and lacto with a slightly medicinal finish. The medicinal finish isn’t overpowering, but it does take away from the beer a bit.

M: Med-light bodied with medium carbonation – no noticeable alcoholic warmth on the finish

O: Bringing out the fickle aroma and flavor of strawberries is ridiculously difficult to master. While tasty, I’d easily drink other Cascade offerings. Every once in a while Cascade’s beers suffer from acetone. While this one isn’t as dramatic as Figaro was for City Beer’s 5th anniversary party some years ago – you can detect it in this one

2014 Edition, Draft -- Oct 2015

A: Deep strawberry aroma with just a trace of oak.

A: Orange-ish color with a bit of a pink hue. Slightly opaque with a light ring of head. Lacing evident around the glass.

T: Bright strawberry flavor mixed with some oak and lacto.

M: Light bodied with moderate carbonation.

O: I’ve had multiple bottles of Strawberry, but this was a first on draft. The strawberry presence came through very well, which is quite difficult given the fleeting nature of the strawberry’s aroma and flavor.

Look Smell Taste Feel Overall
4.25 4.25 4.25 4.25 4.25

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Photo of BEERchitect
3.46/5  rDev -13.9%
look: 3.75 | smell: 2.75 | taste: 3.75 | feel: 3.75 | overall: 3.5

Such a fickle fruit, the strawberry embarks upon a sour and acidic ale that gets the finesse, floral and vibrant fruit out of its comfort zone. But Cascade's spontaneous inspired ale insists upon the fruit's use.

Carrying a rosy tint, the hazy golden ale floats a soft creme-laced head. Ahead of the strong perfume of strawberry, and drift of soured milk and earthen decay acts pungently upon the nose. But once the taste ensues, the slight sweetness and tartness interplay has a sweetheart candy demeanor.

With the sweetness dissolving quickly off of the tongue, the sourness, fruitiness and peppery flavors dance on the middle palate, carrying the taste of crabapple, lime, gooseberry, peach and pear- all of the extremely under-ripened variety. The strong acidity of rice wine vinegar has a saline roundness and an earthy balsa taste. The late spices of yeast are slight medicinal as the vanilla, pepper and peat carry a quick chloroseptic finish.

As the acidity has its way with the malt, only a short and wheaty finish remembers the malt and gives this light bodied ale a dry, palate-stripping quality. Yet its the vinegar-like sourness and tannin-rich astringency that allows the beer a powdery and acetic closure. Yet, the perisistant strawberry and sour milk character plague the aftertaste.

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Photo of coriswrasse
5/5  rDev +24.4%
look: 5 | smell: 5 | taste: 5 | feel: 5 | overall: 5

this beer was one of my favorites from Cascade. so I gave it all 5's. they really nailed it in with this one. great carbonation and wonderful strawberry goodness from nose, to taste to finish.

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Photo of ecarl97
3.5/5  rDev -12.9%

This could be an amazing beer but, the aroma of yeast is too overpowering. Once it hits your pallet, it delivers, but the smell is hard to get past.

Appearance: It is a beautiful light orange with a hue of pink.

Smell: Way too much yeast, its all I smell.

Taste: Carbonation, sweetness, tones of strawberry...delivers as an American Wild Ale.

Mouthfeel: Light and carbonated, my wife mentioned pop rocks.

Overall: Decent but the yeast aroma is too much. Its very chapstick, bandaid, medicine that I do not want to smell. This is typical of American Wild Ales, but this is over the top.

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Photo of Jonada
3.64/5  rDev -9.5%
look: 4 | smell: 3.75 | taste: 3.5 | feel: 4 | overall: 3.5

750 ml bottle poured into a wine glass. 2013 project. 8.0% ABV

Appearance: Pours a dark reddish orange with 1 finger of a fizzy off white/eggshell colored head that settles quickly to a very thick ring. Body is very hazy but still translucent, with quite a bit of visible carbonation.

Smell: Strawberries (surprise!), with lesser notes of oak, wheat and slight spices. Straightforward and clean for the most part, but with a hint of a bandaid/medicinal character that I get in a lot of strawberry sours.

Taste: Medium/high acidic sourness. Strawberry mostly with hints of vanilla, oak and lacto, but all of those are much less prominent. Like the aroma there's also distinctive, what I can best describe as, bandaid character that comes out more in the finish and aftertaste. It doesn't completely override everything else, but it does take a bit away from the overall enjoyment.

Mouthfeel: Fully end of medium bodied with a slightly creamy mouthfeel. Carbonation borders on high. Alcohol is hidden reasonably well, but does begin to produce a warming sensation in the chest the most it's consumed.

Overall: Good, but definitely one of Cascade's weaker offerings. I'm beginning to think strawberries are just not a fruit that's meant to be brewed with as I've yet to try a great beer that uses them. As for this specific one, go ahead and try it if you're a fan of Cascade, sours or strawberries in general, but I doubt I'll be getting this again.

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Photo of lordofstarside
3.69/5  rDev -8.2%
look: 4 | smell: 3.75 | taste: 3.5 | feel: 4 | overall: 3.75

2013 project

Pours blood red orange, half a finger of foam dissipating almost immediately. Moderate carbonation, not bad lacing

Smells of strawberries, mint, oak, vinegar, leather, and alcohol. Smell is sort of off, sort of medicinal smelling

Taste follows. Tart strawberry, oak, and vinegar. Again there's a strange minty after taste, sort of metallic. Finishes with some booze

Feel is pretty sour, moderate body. It's sippable

Overall I feel the bottle is off. Still enjoyable, though

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Photo of StraightNoChaser
4.25/5  rDev +5.7%

appearance: hazy red. fairly thick head on the pour.
smell: funky, fermented strawberry.
taste: just like the nose. Sour, tart strawberry and quite dry.
overall: My first Cascade. Very nice. This is amazingly drinkable, refreshing even.

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Photo of zeledonia
4.15/5  rDev +3.2%
look: 4 | smell: 4 | taste: 4.25 | feel: 4 | overall: 4.25

2013 vintage. Tasted 8 June 2014.

Pours a super-cloudy murky medium amber with light orange tints. About 1/2 finger of head, pretty good retention and lacing for a sour.

In the smell, I don't get much strawberry. I get vanilla and sour - an interesting combination. The vanilla is warm and expansive, the sour is tart and a fine complement to that richness. I am still looking for the fruit.

Taste is a little wacky. Very, very sour. About 80% sour, 20% ripe strawberry and vanilla warmth. Has that very acidic sour that many of Cascade's beers have - fortunately I like that, as it dominates the beer much more than I think it should.

Feel is medium-bodied, with prickly, singing carbonation. Lasting, tilts acidic/lacto even more in the finish.

Pretty darn tasty, but it tastes a lot like many of Cascade's other beers - the strawberry doesn't come through as clearly as I'd like it to. Very much a sour with a little bit of fruit. Not what I was expecting; it's still quite good, but in my opinion it's a stretch to call the beer "Strawberry".

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Strawberry from Cascade Brewing / Raccoon Lodge & Brewpub
Beer rating: 90 out of 100 with 513 ratings