Valley Of The Heart's Delight
Almanac Beer Co.

Valley Of The Heart's DelightValley Of The Heart's Delight
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From:
Almanac Beer Co.
 
California, United States
Style:
Wild Ale
Ranked #87
ABV:
7%
Score:
96
Ranked #896
Avg:
4.34 | pDev: 6.91%
Reviews:
112
Ratings:
774
Status:
Active
Rated:
Mar 15, 2022
Added:
Jan 30, 2014
Wants:
  123
Gots:
  125
SCORE
96
World-Class
Valley Of The Heart's DelightValley Of The Heart's Delight
Notes: This sour ale is inspired by the agricultural history of the Santa Clara Valley. Long before it became Silicon Valley, it was known as the Valley of The Heart’s Delight, a fertile basin overflowing with fruit orchards. Brewed with foraged apricots handpicked by the Garden To Table non-profit, this collaborative beer celebrates and supports their mission to promote urban farming in San Jose.
Recent ratings and reviews. | Log in to view more ratings + sorting options.
Photo of entheos
Rated by entheos from California

3.02/5  rDev -30.4%
look: 2 | smell: 3 | taste: 3.25 | feel: 2.75 | overall: 3
More like a sour seltzer than a beer. Disappointing given the high rating by others. It’s alright, but not world class.
Mar 15, 2022
 
Rated: 4.25 by jakecattleco from California

Mar 14, 2022
 
Rated: 4.02 by TMoney2591 from Illinois

Nov 29, 2021
 
Rated: 3.77 by Ristaccia from Nebraska

May 25, 2021
 
Rated: 4.26 by robotic_being from Florida

Jan 18, 2021
 
Rated: 4.32 by EMH73 from New York

Oct 23, 2020
Photo of StoutElk_92
Reviewed by StoutElk_92 from Massachusetts

4.63/5  rDev +6.7%
look: 4.75 | smell: 4.75 | taste: 4.5 | feel: 4.5 | overall: 4.75
Pours amber gold orange with a creamy frothy white foam head. Smells like strawberries, banana, apricot, stone fruit, tropical fruit punch, oak wine barrel, hint of leathery acetic vinegar, some caramelized bready malts, with earthy herbal grassy hops. Tastes like sour apricots, fresh strawberries, tropical fruit punch, banana, stone fruits, cherry, plum, nectarine, red berry, oak wine barrel, caramelized bready malts, hint of mild acetic leather, spice, with floral earthy herbal grassy hops. Feels medium bodied, creamy smooth with moderate carbonation. Overall a real nice sour blonde ale aged in wine barrels with apricots and strawberries.
Jul 04, 2020
 
Rated: 5 by TallGuyCM from California

Jun 11, 2020
 
Rated: 4.34 by Lofreqwave from California

Apr 13, 2020
Photo of bubseymour
Reviewed by bubseymour from Maryland

3.93/5  rDev -9.4%
look: 3.75 | smell: 3.75 | taste: 4 | feel: 4 | overall: 4
I’m not sure the high ratings on this one. Vinegar aroma, moderate/high sour scale. Minimal funk and complexity. Drinkable but very “amateur” IMO.
Feb 11, 2020
 
Rated: 4.32 by Kdouble from Tennessee

Jan 02, 2020
 
Rated: 4.44 by artf from Pennsylvania

Jan 01, 2020
 
Rated: 4.33 by Antwon616 from California

Oct 26, 2019
 
Rated: 4.45 by petrusek23 from Ohio

Oct 15, 2019
 
Rated: 4.36 by Curt3 from New Jersey

Sep 17, 2019
Photo of brentk56
Reviewed by brentk56 from North Carolina

4.32/5  rDev -0.5%
look: 4 | smell: 4.5 | taste: 4.25 | feel: 4.5 | overall: 4.25
Appearance: Pours a cloudy goldenstraw with a thin cap that fades to a film; spotty lacing

Smell: Lactic apricot and strawberry tones with some cheesy funk; oaky and acetic

Taste: Lactic and acetic sour tones mingle, with the apricot and strawberry peeking through; acetic, funky and oaky, through the middle, with a distinctly sour finish

Mouthfeel: Medium body with moderate to high carbonation; puckery

Overall: It appears that the fruit for this beer varies year to year (not sure what year this one is but I just bought the bottle and it is apricot and strawberry); really enjoyed this one as all the elements work well
Aug 08, 2019
 
Rated: 4.28 by gardner254 from Ohio

Aug 07, 2019
Photo of thebeers
Reviewed by thebeers from Pennsylvania

3.94/5  rDev -9.2%
look: 3.75 | smell: 4 | taste: 4 | feel: 4 | overall: 3.75
Pours a hazed, yellow-orange color with a wisp of soupy, off-white head. Decent lacing.

Tart, sour aroma that comes across like plum as much as anything, along with a hint of wood.

The taste follows. Strong, tart plum, white wine grapes, apricot, cherry, wood and a little raisin. Acidic finish.

Medium bodied with a slightly oily consistency and moderate carbonation.

The fruit is pretty well melded into just fruity tartness at this age. The wine barrel does add a nice undertone to it all. Decent, but not my favorite from the series. 1/25/18 bottling date.
Jul 03, 2019
 
Rated: 4.4 by NolaHopHead from Louisiana

Mar 29, 2019
Photo of flagmantho
Reviewed by flagmantho from Washington

4.33/5  rDev -0.2%
look: 4 | smell: 4 | taste: 4.5 | feel: 3.75 | overall: 4.75
Poured from 375mL bottle into a tulip. This is the 2018 vintage, 7.2%.

Appearance: rich golden hue with a hint of reddish tint and a little bit of haze. Head is minimal, and subsides quickly. It's a nice-looking sour.

Smell: lightly sweet and fruity; the cherry comes through the most with a little hint of sourness. Subtle and enjoyable.

Taste: a good tartness, a great cherry character, and just enough funk to keep everything balanced. I don't get apricot directly, but I'm sure it's contributing to the delightful fruitiness. I really like this beer.

Mouthfeel: medium body with a light carbonation and appropriate effervescence. It works.

Overall: this beer is very delicious indeed. It's just so flavorful and refreshing - I could drink a bucketful of this.
Nov 29, 2018
 
Rated: 3.43 by BerryKumquat from California

Nov 22, 2018
Photo of Roguer
Reviewed by Roguer from Connecticut

4.3/5  rDev -0.9%
look: 4 | smell: 4.5 | taste: 4.25 | feel: 4.25 | overall: 4.25
Big frothy head production with good retention. Brew is nearly opaque and dark orange.

Sharply sour and fruity nose: waves of tannins, vinegar, cherry pits, oak, vanilla, and apricots. Musty.

Surprisingly malty on the palate: brown sugar, wheat, pumpernickel; must and dust; pepper; oak, tannins, overripe fruit, cherries; moderately sour, balanced, good puckering; silky and moderately full bodied.

This is a surprisingly balanced sour, not over the top, and approachable. Not as fruity as you would expect, and the barrel influence is more restrained than expected - or perhaps more accurately, the wine barrel blends with the overall profile remarkably smoothly.
Nov 12, 2018
 
Rated: 4.5 by Marvicsin from California

Aug 26, 2018
Photo of SirSaucy
Reviewed by SirSaucy from North Carolina

4.78/5  rDev +10.1%
look: 4.75 | smell: 4.75 | taste: 4.75 | feel: 5 | overall: 4.75
Very fruity and delicious sour. Apricot and cherry very prominent in nose and taste without being overly sweet; I find most beers with cherries to be too sweet. Nice white grapey wine hint in there too. Great stuff, probably my new favorite sour. Maybe try an oakyer variant?
Aug 14, 2018
 
Rated: 4.05 by gbiello from Massachusetts

Jul 30, 2018
 
Rated: 4.25 by taospowder from New Mexico

Jul 20, 2018
Photo of snaotheus
Reviewed by snaotheus from Washington

4.39/5  rDev +1.2%
look: 4 | smell: 4.25 | taste: 4.5 | feel: 4.25 | overall: 4.5
2018-07-11
375ml bottle served in a pair of small Cantillon glasses. 1/25/18 is on the shoulder of the bottle.

Pours mostly clear bronze color with a smallish head and a lot of very fine carbonation. Smell is tart and peachy, a little grassy.

Taste is quite tart -- and quite good. Still get some stone fruit; not as much grass. maybe a slight hint of funk.

Mouthfeel is dry and full at the same time. Overall, quite good beer.
Jul 12, 2018
 
Rated: 4.43 by Wizzle32 from Pennsylvania

Jun 23, 2018
 
Rated: 4.35 by hozersr from Pennsylvania

Jun 23, 2018
 
Rated: 4.25 by Wheels2532 from Pennsylvania

Jun 23, 2018
 
Rated: 4.3 by Nunya from Ohio

Jun 17, 2018
 
Rated: 4.18 by jaydoc from Kansas

Jun 01, 2018
Photo of Hopheadjeffery
Reviewed by Hopheadjeffery from Illinois

4.35/5  rDev +0.2%
look: 5 | smell: 4.25 | taste: 4.25 | feel: 4.75 | overall: 4.25
Tasted in a snifter from draft at Consume on May 3, 2018. This sour ale is inspired by the agricultural history of the Santa Clara Valley. Long before it became Silicon Valley, it was known as the Valley of The Heart’s Delight, a fertile basin overflowing with fruit orchards. Brewed with foraged apricots, loquats and cherries.
May 30, 2018
Photo of Superman6776
Rated by Superman6776 from Ohio

4.48/5  rDev +3.2%
look: 4.5 | smell: 4 | taste: 4.75 | feel: 4.5 | overall: 4.5
A great BA sour; with the right amount of funk.
May 27, 2018
Photo of Bruno74200
Reviewed by Bruno74200 from France

4.34/5  rDev 0%
look: 4 | smell: 4.25 | taste: 4.5 | feel: 4.25 | overall: 4.25
L - clear golden colour for the first glass, then quite hazy from the yeast. Almost no head

S - as it warms up the strawberry is more and more present. Some stone fruits notes. Brett. Moderatly funky

T - very complex with some funk, a certain tartness, apricot acidity balanced with strawberry sweetness. Nice malt bill. Good drinkability

M - Champagne like carbonation, nice mouthfeel

O - Less funky than a lambic based beer, this wild ale shows a lot of fruitiness and complexity. It remains balanced at all times
May 12, 2018
 
Rated: 4.35 by grapeshops from California

Apr 20, 2018
 
Rated: 4.33 by TheCrowsEye from California

Apr 11, 2018
 
Rated: 4.25 by Patches826 from Massachusetts

Apr 08, 2018
 
Rated: 4.25 by TheBrewsky from California

Apr 01, 2018
Photo of Ice_Cream_And_IPAs
Reviewed by Ice_Cream_And_IPAs from New York

4.4/5  rDev +1.4%
look: 4.25 | smell: 4.25 | taste: 4.5 | feel: 4.25 | overall: 4.5
Look: Pours somewhere between pink and orange, completely murky. Almost no head, and whatever does form, dissipates immediately. Minimal lacing left on the glass.
Smell: Apricots dominate the nose, though cherries are also noticeable. The oak character is apparent on the nose as well. Fairly pungent.
Taste: Cherries dominate the apricots on the taste, slightly. This guy is quite tart, but not in the artificial way. Oak from the wine barrels is also noticeable in the taste. No alcohol is apparent, and overall the taste is extremely enjoyable. The aftertaste lingers for quite a while.
Feel: The body is quite light, carbonation is medium to low.
Overall: Very pleased with this. Naturally tart, fruity and tart, I'd buy this again at $12.50 (remember we are in California).
Mar 31, 2018
Valley Of The Heart's Delight from Almanac Beer Co.
Beer rating: 96 out of 100 with 886 ratings