Cascade Elderberry | Cascade Brewing / Raccoon Lodge & Brewpub

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Cascade ElderberryCascade Elderberry

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

Style: American Wild Ale

Alcohol by volume (ABV): 7.75%

Availability: Rotating

Notes / Commercial Description:
No notes at this time.

Added by lacqueredmouse on 07-25-2012

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Reviews: 48 | Ratings: 345
Photo of Stinkypuss
4.86/5  rDev +20%
look: 4.5 | smell: 4.75 | taste: 5 | feel: 5 | overall: 4.75

Shout out to the Tims on this one

Pours a dark red almost purple color with an off white, fruit tinged head that lasted for a few moments. The aroma was deeply fruity, sour, some wheat, funk, damp basement must, and perfume all arose from the glass. In the flavor, nice cranberry like flavor though it was elderberry here. Funk, vinegar, wheat, cider and alcoholic flavors were all in delicate balancing letting all parties show their hands as the beer was sipped. A well integrated brew with remarkable flavors, solid, full bodied feel, and a crisp, drying finish. This beer was everything we thought it would be. A true classic.

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Photo of elNopalero
4.6/5  rDev +13.6%
look: 4.5 | smell: 4.5 | taste: 4.75 | feel: 4.5 | overall: 4.5

This is a review for the 2013 Elderberry, as sampled at the Cascade Barrelhouse in November, 2016.
Tasty berry notes with a sweet bite on the end. This was Intense, and only got more intense over time. Also delicious.

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Photo of Budinetz
4.54/5  rDev +12.1%
look: 4.75 | smell: 4.5 | taste: 4.5 | feel: 4.25 | overall: 4.75

2014 vintage - 8.2% abv. Poured from a cork and cage bottle into 3 different glasses. Poured very carefully and slowly and then the last 2 oz was poured into a small glass.

Pours a deep crimson red color with a light tan head that dissipates rather quickly. Very minimal lacing but that is characteristic of the style. 4.75

Smells of subtle oak, sour berries, lactobacillus, and an elderberry musk. Some very prestigious scents for a sour beer. Very well done. 4.5

Tastes of sour berries, lactobacillus, subtle oak, and nothing else. Flavor is awesome and very characteristic of the style. Amazing sour flavor on this brew! 4.5

Feels puckering on the tongue with a higher amount of carbonation due to the bottle fermentation. The pleasant prickliness compliments the sour tartness. 4.25

Overall a fantastic rendition of an old classic style from
Belgium. Cascade always delivers a solid sour. Do your self a favor and pick this one up! 4.75


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Photo of Immortale25
4.53/5  rDev +11.9%
look: 4.25 | smell: 4.25 | taste: 4.75 | feel: 4.5 | overall: 4.5

Poured into a Funky Buddha Brewery snifter. Label says 2011.

A- Pours a purplish dark brown color with a 1/2 inch tan head, also purplish, that retains a bit before falling to a thick ring around the edge of the glass and a sheer sheet of surface foam. Semi-resilient lacing leaves a thick ring behind.

S- Very musty, funky aroma that almost has that baby poop fume to it. Also slightly sweet as the elderberry comes in. Certainly wild with a distinct amount of Brett.

T- Holy hell. Beautifully delicate balance of fruit sweetness, tartness and funk. First you get the the elderberry followed immediately by a perfectly restrained amount of sourness and then a sublimely Bretty aftertaste. So drinkable. Only after multiple sips does the lactic acid fully come in and throw things a bit off-tilt but this is obviously meant to be sipped slowly. The Brett also starts to fade as the drink progresses.

M- A subtle but lasting helping of pucker with medium carbonation and a body that's deceivingly light given the color.

O- So this is what people are talking about when they speak of sours knocking their socks off. Only took me like twenty purchases to find one that truly struck a chord in me. This being only the first Cascade offering I've had, I'm going to make it a point to try everything I come across by them. Outstanding indeed.

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Photo of cbutova
4.49/5  rDev +10.9%
look: 4.25 | smell: 4.5 | taste: 4.5 | feel: 4.5 | overall: 4.5

Thanks a whole bunch Emma. Fully reviewed last night to the laptop.

A- Deep and dark ruby body like blackberries with a thin fizzy veil. Decent retention for a sour but the tiny ring isn't going to leave much lace.

S- Boisterous berries off the top somewhat like raspberry but certainly distinct. Reminds me of grapes at time. Musty vinous tones, smarties, lemon juice sours, sweat groins, funky lactic bacteria and more grape juice.

T- Sour lactic acid throughout with no vinegar and a whole barrage of fruity berry tones like a mix of raspberry and grape juice. Musty wet oak barrels, green apple, lemon and lime sourness and funky straw.

MF- Medium bodied for the style with a very creamy texture. Carbonation is medium to high and it ends very sour.

I have a hard time imagining how people do not enjoy these Cascade fruit sours. The really allow the chosen fruit to shine above a funky and very sour Wild Ale base. Not the most complex sours around but very well done time and time again.

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Photo of GreesyFizeek
4.44/5  rDev +9.6%
look: 4.25 | smell: 4.5 | taste: 4.5 | feel: 4 | overall: 4.5

Bottle shared by Mark the other day, thanks man!

This one pours a dark ruby red, with a small head, and a little bit of lacing.

This had a wonderful sour dark fruit aroma here. I don't think I've ever eaten elderberries on their own, so I'm not an expert in what they taste like, but I do get a wonderful dark fruit character here, with some oak and heavy red wine character.

This is one of the best Cascade sours that I've had, it's wonderful. The elderberries come through really strongly. It's not quite as strongly tart and crazy as some of the other Cascade sours I've had- whatever their house yeast culture is creates some blindingly sour beers. This one is not so bad, though.

This is medium bodied, with a prickly and tart mouthfeel, and a moderate level of carbonation.

This was really pretty great, a home run from Cascade.

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Photo of harrymel
4.36/5  rDev +7.7%
look: 3 | smell: 4.5 | taste: 4.5 | feel: 4 | overall: 4.5

Reviewed 04AUG12

Nice pretty dark rose colored beer with little/no foam and a high degree of clarity. Nose is just as expected, I dig the elderberry - herbal, floral and fruity like a blend of blueberries, soil, spices, some lavender like tones atop a leathery prune skin. Hints of peppercorn. The flavor comes through with reserved tart for the brewery and a good dose of aromatic and infectious flavors which are rich and robust with delicacy at the same time. Of fruit flavored sours, this may be my favorite choice of fruit and flower. Medium bodied with moderate carb and a slick finish. I like this beer, I like this beer a lot.

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Photo of Rutager
4.35/5  rDev +7.4%
look: 4 | smell: 4 | taste: 4.5 | feel: 4.5 | overall: 4.5

On tap at Chuck's hop shop.

Appearance. Pours a hazy deep amber brown with a thin white head.

Smell. Dark sour berries, lightly floral, lightly funky.

Taste. Intensley fruity and quite sour, lightly funky. Mostly dark berries and light fruit flavours.

Mouthfeel. Medium body, medium+ carbonation.

Overall. Another awesome Cascade sour. Loved it.

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Photo of scottfrie
4.3/5  rDev +6.2%
look: 4 | smell: 4.5 | taste: 4.25 | feel: 4.25 | overall: 4.25

750ml bottle into TRB stemware. 2011 project.

A: Pours a deep maroon color with a thin light tan head that faded into a faint collar. A few spots of soapy lace were left down the glass.
S: Nose is full of that characteristic Cascade funk that has a complexity that is lacking in many American wild ales. The oak and bug/yeast blend contains much more than just a clean lactic bite. Behind that complex funk/tartness, the elderberry is floral and lightly sweet and jammy.
T: Follows the nose with dominating flavors of tannic oak, complex pedio/lactic/brett tartness, slight spice, and finally elderberry jam. The elderberry is almost more floral than fruity. The finish is drying with a clean tartness and bright acidity, and the aftertaste has lingering notes of musty oak and a touch of caramel.
M: Medium body with a touch of greasy oak, a drying finish with a few gritty tannins, and a moderate tartness and clean acidity. Funk is musty and earthy. The fruit, as stated, is not especially sweet, perhaps a consequence of age.
O: Another great Cascade sour. I love the complexity of their funk. The fruit could have shined through a tad more, but I imagine a fresher bottle would be slightly juicier. Still, I prefer the funk on this bottle over many other fresh fruited sours on the market.

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Photo of StonedTrippin
4.3/5  rDev +6.2%
look: 4.25 | smell: 4.25 | taste: 4.25 | feel: 4.25 | overall: 4.5

elderberries are a neat fruit, in that they are incredible for you but really intensely flavored, astringent, even harsh at times in the wild, but in a sour beer as bold as this one, they seem a lovely compliment. the beer is deep purple, beautiful color, not as heady as others but welling up a little pinkish white head. the nose is the tartness of the berries behind the sour cultures cascade has perfected over time here. its mouthwatering and fruity without being sweet. what i like in the flavor is that this is spiced too. its fills in some of the gaps between the lighter malt and the high tone fruit. wintery too, which makes it nice for this time of year, but not so loaded with allspice and anise or whatever is in here that it distracts from the sourness or from the elderberries, it actually accentuates both in a new way, which is probably the greatest success of this brew. not as dry as some of the others, the berry tartness lingers just a little on the tails of the spice, and this is one sour beer overall, sharp just a little in its acidity, but as good in total enjoyment as any of the cascade beers ive had thus far. fortunate to share this one with family and friends, its a wonderfully elegant and unique brew, and the best use of elderberries i have seen in an ale, hands down.

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Photo of smakawhat
4.29/5  rDev +5.9%
look: 4.25 | smell: 4.5 | taste: 4.25 | feel: 4 | overall: 4.25

Poured from the bottle into a tulip glass. Vintage 2015.

Slightly fizzy sounding out of the bottle, filling the glass with a dark purple, almost eggplant color with very dark red edges. Faint amount of carbonation just barely seen through the body, rising to meet a very creamy tan head of a finger. Has little retention but quick re-population, but eventually settles down to a nice bowled small collar, and puffy island center.

Big fruit aroma off this that goes in many different places. Thick rich hints of berried and dark fruit, strawberry, blackberry, fig and raisin. Controlled light sweetness with a bit funk and playful malt sweetness of dark caramel to match. Lots of real nice flavors coming off this, with a rich warm sensation.

First experience on the palate is a very lively amount of carbonation. A bit nearly out of control carbonation that makes the mouth explosive on the palate. Very nicely tart and low acidity with wine like fruit flavors and a good Belgian dark ale malt and sugar presence. Slightly gaseous finish, but big basket berried flavors, blueberry, strawberry, raspberry collide and make for a lot of fun. Slight nutmeg like sweetness as well seems to sneak in, with an almost winter warmer like quality.

Very nice brew, barrel aging doesn't seem that apparent and terms of mouthfeel and added flavors, but a still very solid wonderfully fruited wild brew.

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Photo of vfgccp
4.27/5  rDev +5.4%
look: 4.5 | smell: 4.25 | taste: 4.25 | feel: 4.25 | overall: 4.25

A - An awesome looking beer. Deep mahogany cranberry cocktail body, half a finger of fine tan head with nice retention and lace.

S - Sour cherry Jello, black currents, chocolate covered pomegranate seeds, and black cherries, sour SweetTart candies.

T - Similar to the nose. Tart sour cherry Jello powder, soft wood, and dry cranberry cocktail.

M - Medium frame. Low carbonation. Unique dry, milky tannin finish coats the palate.

O - A really nice, tart fruit juice-forward sour.

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Photo of Thomas_Wikman
4.27/5  rDev +5.4%
look: 4.25 | smell: 4 | taste: 4.5 | feel: 4 | overall: 4.25

I bought the Elderberry Barrel Aged Wild American Ale from the Jester King Brewery in Austin, Texas. They typically feature the best of Farmhouse Ales, Wild American Ales, and other styles, from around the world, in addition to their own items. I thought this one was very nice, tasty and refreshing. Outstanding.

Look: dark brown purplish almost black with a half-inch bubbly mocca head.

Aroma: Elderberry, woody-oak, some yeasty funk.

Taste: Lots of berry flavor, elderberry, blueberry, blackberry, raspberry, currant, and more, I believe, yeast, and oak, and lingering tartness that stays a very long time.

Feel: medium body and medium carbonation

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Photo of Axnjxn
4.21/5  rDev +4%
look: 4.25 | smell: 4.5 | taste: 4 | feel: 4.25 | overall: 4.25

2011 750ml bottle into a teku glass.

pours a dark murky reddish black with a nice head. smell is extremely complex and the high point of this beer. plums, grapes.. just aweomse. taste is slightly tart but the plums/grapes mixture really shines through. tasty shit right here. medium bodied..medium to high carbonation...lovely

overall an impressive offering from cascade thats different from their others, not as tart. very flavorful!

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Photo of jbaker67
4.21/5  rDev +4%
look: 4 | smell: 4.25 | taste: 4.25 | feel: 4 | overall: 4.25

Pours a darker muddled cola with auburn hues while topped with an off-white beige head... Aroma of dark berry jam with the expected cascade sour note. Little sweet tart action again but a deeper dark berry essence... Flavors pack a decent dark berry sour punch with the typical cascade sour qualities. Medium bodied with semi-lively carbonation. Nice and enjoyable.

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Photo of ThePorterSorter
4.19/5  rDev +3.5%
look: 3.75 | smell: 4 | taste: 4.5 | feel: 4 | overall: 4

The beer pours a dark, rich looking, hazy, black/brown with 1/2 an inch of off white head that fades quickly into a thin halo. The nose is unexpectedly sweet and fruity with a touch of sour. The taste is heavily fruity with a big juicy, tart blackberry/raspberry fruitiness upfront and great grain, nearly chocolatey richness. The mouthfeel is quite tart with berry skin tannins, slightly sour, vinous, ascetic, dry, effervescent, and drinkable. This isn't an intense sour like I was expecting, very similar to the cascade blackberry, but still highlights the elderberry very well and is quite drinkable. I'd like to see how this ages.

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Photo of Treyliff
4.17/5  rDev +3%
look: 4.5 | smell: 4.25 | taste: 4 | feel: 4.25 | overall: 4.25

On tap at FFF

A- pours deep brown in color with a ruby hue, creamy white he'd that leaves some lacing behind

S- fresh pressed berries, light acidic funk, woody oak, grape skin, some herbal notes

T- woody oak and tangy berry up front, followed by lots of herbal notes and acidic funk. Hint of vanilla sweetness mixed with black currant. The finish is semi-dry with more berries and acidic tartness on the linger

M- medium body and moderate carbonation leads to a foamy mouthfeel and a dry finish

O- nice mix of herbal and berries throughout

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Photo of GarthDanielson
4.17/5  rDev +3%
look: 4.25 | smell: 4 | taste: 4.25 | feel: 4 | overall: 4.25

2013 Project. Poured from a cork and cage into a snifter, the beer is a dark, plum coloring, with a halo of tight carbonation bubbles. Good sound of effervescence on the pour. Aromas of tart and sweet berry, a decent amount of musty and farmhouse funk, tart grape, rich dates, some woody highlights, horseblanket, and a subtle sourness throughout. Flavors are richly sweet, tart, and sour forward, with old world fruit richness serving as a solid backbone to support the tart berry and grape notes. Slightly acidic and strongly sour throughout, with the plum and date backbone powering through the funk and sour. Very dry and astringent follow to the fruity tart and rich stone fruit aftertaste. The body is robust, but very dry into the puckering, lingering finish. Very wine-like characteristics at the end.

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Photo of tectactoe
4.16/5  rDev +2.7%
look: 3.75 | smell: 4 | taste: 4.25 | feel: 4.25 | overall: 4.25

Thanks to Kevin for cracking the bottle. Always on the lookout for more Cascade sours! The Elderberry pours a dark-ish, brown-ish, and faintly indigo tinted color with barely any head. Surprising to see such a lack of foam on what are typically a series of volatile brews. A light gray collar rests at the edges for just a few minutes before it dissipates into thin air.

The aroma is full of sweet and tart elderberries first and foremost. If you haven't smelled elderberries before, they're kind of reminiscent between a "berry-ish" and dark fruit mix, along the lines of blackberries, blueberries and currants. It's a satisfying, strange, and noble fruit indeed. Needless to say, the aroma is carrying heavy notes of "berry" and not just specifically "elderberry", along with some mild vanilla-tinted oak over a faint, vinegary background.

As is the case with nearly all of the Cascade sours I've tried up to this point, the first sip hits your jowels with a solid jolt of tartness that flexes its traps like mad and will soon have the inside of your cheeks touching. The sourness is hashed apart by a nice fruity sensation, however, full of sweet berries. So far, a nice balance of sweet and sour is taking place right in front of my tongue.

Elderberries, blackberries, and all sorts of berries keep working their magic and massaging the palate hard while some vinegar notes waft in on a thin surfboard of oak. Very faint vanilla hints cling to the finishing, drying oak, and with each sip, I can say that this is also one of the least acidic Cascade brews I've had so far, which is doing wonders for plausible drinkability. Medium bodied, soft on the carbonation and just a few steps outside the realm of "creamy".

Yet another highly enjoyable Cascade beer. I like the use of oddball (read: less common) fruits in beers, and I'd say that elderberries qualify. Whether you've had actual elderberries or not, it doesn't matter much. Do you like berries, period? If the answer is yes, then there's no doubt that you'll love this brew. Cascade typically hides their alcohol very well; coupled with the lower acidity (relative to most other Cascade beers), this beer becomes dangerously drinkable.

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Photo of angrybabboon
4.14/5  rDev +2.2%
look: 4 | smell: 4.25 | taste: 4 | feel: 4.25 | overall: 4.25

Cheers to Goblinmunkey7 for sharing this beer

Consumed 11/16/14

A: Pours way darker than I would have expected, a very deep purple - medium to large, light tan head, leaves some nice streaks of lacing

S: Very, very sour - sour in both the funky/acidic/lactic way, and a very fruity, tart sourness - some acidic sour, some musty, damp cellar, and some lactic funk - big sour berry aroma - I will admit that I do not really know what elderberries smell like like, but based on this beer, I am guessing the aroma is reminiscent of tart, sour, underripe blueberries - blueberry yogurt past its expiration date - rich oak and some hints of malts underneath the sour

T: Multidimensional sour - follows the aroma, as there are distinct sour notes from souring process, and the inherent sourness of the berries - acidic, with some lemon-like tart - damp, wet, old cellar - lactic notes and hints of yogurt - big, tart and sour berry, and berry skin - lots of oak flavor - lightly sweet, and finishes a lot cleaner and dryer than some of the other Cascade sours

M: Medium body, nicely carbonated, finishes with lingering sour

O: The Elder Berries V: Skyrim

This is a very interesting sour. It's very big, and very bold. It cranks the berries and sour to 11, and doesn't really have much nuance, but it works. Definitely worth a try.

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Photo of OKbrew89
4.13/5  rDev +2%
look: 4.5 | smell: 4 | taste: 4.25 | feel: 4 | overall: 4

On tap. Pours dark purple with a one finger head that leaves lacing all the way down the glass. Nose of lactic acid, berries, and a subtle note of alcohol. Taste is moderate sourness with elderflower, blackberry, oak, and dry, wine-like finish. The barrel aging is subtle and more noticeable as the beer warms. Medium-light body and medium carbonation without any unexpected funkiness.
It's an interesting beer that is balanced and has many layers. It feels stronger than its 7.75% ABV. What really hurts it, for me, is it's price point. At more than $1/oz, there are barely lesser beers out there that cost 1/2 of what this cost. This is a try once beer but an interesting one at that.

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Photo of Jonada
4.12/5  rDev +1.7%
look: 4.5 | smell: 4.25 | taste: 4.25 | feel: 3.25 | overall: 4

2013 Project. 8.2% ABV. 750 ml bottle poured into a wine glass

Appearance: Pours a very dark red/brown color with 1 finger of a tan head that settles to a medium ring. Appearance in the glass is dark, but when held up to light reveals a clear body with dark ruby red color.

Smell: Sour cherry, oak, leather, licorice, dark berries, hearty red wine grapes. Maybe a touch of funk, but mostly a clean sourness. Very similar to a flanders red, but with some additional dark berry character.

Taste: Dark berries, fruit leather, black currants, some malt character, sour cherry and some oak, but not as strong as in the aroma. There's a very light roasted character that that starts to develop in the finish and aftertaste after a while as well. Very subtle, but definitely detectable.

Mouthfeel: Medium bodied, but a bit thin as well. Carbonation

Overall: Really solid offering from Cascade. It's not quite at the level of some of their best beers, but probably just one step below. Worth a try, if you can find it.

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Photo of Phil-Fresh
4.1/5  rDev +1.2%
look: 4 | smell: 4 | taste: 4.25 | feel: 4 | overall: 4

A: Floral with a light berry and wood, coupled with a moderate lingering sourness.

A: Deep purple, almost black color, clear, with a very thin dense white head that has solid retention.

T: Bright floral/berry flavor upfront, light wood, with a lingering sourness.

M: Medium bodied with moderate carbonation. There is a light, but pleasing acidity to the beer.

O: Pretty tasty; the beer has a very solid floral/berry aroma and flavor that is nicely complimented by the lingering sourness.

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Photo of inlimbo77
4.1/5  rDev +1.2%
look: 4 | smell: 4 | taste: 4.25 | feel: 4 | overall: 4

2oz taster pour
Enjoyed at the Portland, OR barrel room on 9/2/12
Enjoyed a bottle of 2011 vintage 9/4/13

A: This one pours out a slightly cloudy, light brown color. There are some pinkish, reddish hues in there. The head is light tannish white though, whats left of it that is. Leaves some lacing

S: There is a lot going on here. The normal tart sour flavors but so much berry character smashed in there. Initial smells of a Flanders Red ale. Tart cherry fruit character. Sweetness. Balsamic vinegar. Deep oak and tannins

T: Up front a nice pucker, but not to the point of ruining the sip. You still can taste the fruit and the roundness of the barrel. I loved this one and marked it higher than Apricot and Strawberry. It just seemed like the flavors all mesh so well. UPDATE: Not as sour as I was expecting. There is some tart dark cherry flavor up front. It's muted. That fruit carries through the sip. There is a sweetness from the berry. Finish is dry and tart. But it's not as dry as other Cascades. Lot of chalk, as I let it warm.

M: The mouthfeel is a little bigger on this one at medium. Wish it was lighter.

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Photo of mynie
4.09/5  rDev +1%
look: 3.75 | smell: 4 | taste: 4.25 | feel: 4 | overall: 4

2013 project. Very expensive bottles were on sale at Row 34 in Boston.

Glugs out a thick and juice like with a small but acceptable head. Smells very sharply sour--must have gotten more intense and pungent with age, judging by earlier reviews. Shock Tart sour, which is to say it's very intense but still has enough sweetness to carry it through.

Tastes quite sour. It's only after a few sips that I realize I don't really know what Elderberrys taste like, and so I can't say anything more educated about the flavor other than that it starts out very sour, continues being sour throughout, and that there's enough berry sweetness in there to keeps things from getting so intense it can't be finished easily.

A well-made sour. As with all of Cascade's beers, it's too expensive and you don't really get what you pay for it, but judged without price in mind it's a good beer.

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Cascade Elderberry from Cascade Brewing / Raccoon Lodge & Brewpub
4.05 out of 5 based on 345 ratings.
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