Farmer's Reserve Citrus
Almanac Beer Co.

Farmer's Reserve CitrusFarmer's Reserve Citrus
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American Wild Ale
Ranked #282
Ranked #1,978
4.18 | pDev: 7.42%
Almanac Beer Co.
California, United States
Farmer's Reserve CitrusFarmer's Reserve Citrus
Notes: Citrus and beer have made a great pair ever since the first lemon wedge was added to a frosty wheat beer. Here we expand on that tradition, melding a sour blond ale with the intensely aromatic zest of Buddha’s Hand citrons and meyer lemons along with the bracing tartness of Yuzu and Blood Oranges from Hamada Farms.
Reviews: 99 | Ratings: 721 | Log in to view all ratings and sort
Photo of rodbeermunch
4.01/5  rDev -4.1%
look: 3.5 | smell: 3.75 | taste: 4.25 | feel: 4 | overall: 4

This is basically Almanac's blonde base beer with all the citrus fruit you can imagine dumped into it. Pours a slightly hazy yellow, 1/3" white head that dissipates in average time. Aroma hits the lemon sour hard.

Taste, yum, a solid 6.5 on the 10 pt sour scale, its a real clean sour, like feels stainless steel meets white wine barrel amplifying the citrus content, nothing in terms of wood or funk going on, just clean sour meets orange and lemon notes all throughout. Abv is not an issue. Carbonation is right where it should be. Even though there is a ton of citrus in this, the citric acid/acidity is not a problem at any point, could crush a bottle of this by myself with minimal effort.

Still manages a slightly dry finish despite the heavy sourness and citrus like grapefruit, orange and lemon notes. At around $10 for 12oz, it is a decent deal I guess, availability tends to be good.

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Photo of SHODriver
4.25/5  rDev +1.7%
look: 4.25 | smell: 4.25 | taste: 4.25 | feel: 4.25 | overall: 4.25

A: Poured into a Duvel tulip to a slightly hazed golden yellow topped by a finger and a half of dense white head which fades fairly quickly to a collar around the edge of the glass with minimal lacing
S: Smells of lemony tartness, doughy bread, a hint of sweetness, and a touch of funky oak
T: Taste is tart and sour lemons with some nice funk, slight oak, sourdough bread, and a little vanilla, Swallow is a little more lemony vanilla with some bread dough and slight lingering funk,
M: This beer has a body that is on the lighter side of medium with a slightly creamy mouthfeel. Carbonation is effervescent while not being prickly and the beer has a drying finish from the acidity.
O: Overall this is a really nice beer. Flavor and complexity is really nice. This one is about four years old but it hasn't seemed to age much. It's lived in my fridge which is probably why any residual bacteria didn't kick things into overdrive. Definitely worth a try if you can find it.

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Photo of Zorro
3.49/5  rDev -16.5%
look: 3.25 | smell: 3.5 | taste: 3.5 | feel: 3.5 | overall: 3.5

Loud pop when the top is removed, very high carbonation level.

Cloudy yellow colored brew with a small white head.

Smells of sour and citrus. Scent of malt and vanilla. Smells of Bergamot orange, the oil in Earl Grey Tea.

Starts out very sweet and sour. Sour orange flavor and quite a bit of vanilla taste. You can really taste the wine barrel and just a guess it is a Chardonnay wine barrel. Strong with wild ale funk. But mostly it is sour.

Mouthfeel is good.

Over all a tasty sour ale.

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Photo of teromous
2.99/5  rDev -28.5%
look: 2 | smell: 3 | taste: 3 | feel: 3.5 | overall: 3

The shoulder of the bottle says: "FR CITRUS 1054061616"

Appearance: The body of the beer is a light opaque yellow. It pours without any head.

Aroma: It has a strong souring fruit aroma that is commonly found in Wile Ales.

Taste: Up front there is a tartness and just a bit of a musty character. It tastes like an average sour.

Mouthfeel: Moderate tartness and a light body. Very drinkable and easy on the palate.

Overall: It smells and tastes like an average sour. The label states that this is a "SOUR BLONDE ALE BREWED WITH BUDDHA'S HAND CITRON, BLOOD ORANGES, MEYER LEMONS, YUZU & AGED IN WINE BARRELS." Granted some of the sourness could be attributed to the lemons but other than that there is nothing that stands out from this beer. It tastes just like a normal pale malt sour. If there is any fruit flavor it is lost in the sourness of the beer and there certainly isn't any wine or barrel character. It's a decent sour beer but I wouldn't recommend it. I wouldn't pick it up again but it's a good enough sour that I would drink it if somebody handed me one.

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Photo of russpowell
3.92/5  rDev -6.2%
look: 2 | smell: 4.25 | taste: 4 | feel: 3.75 | overall: 4

Pours an effervescent gold with instaneously dropping eggshell colored head. No head retention & lacing

S: Sourness & faint pomelo, a ittle grassyness & pear as it warms

T: Almost like orange sweetart with requisiite dryness up front. More of the same as this warms, a little more sweetness too. Finishes dry, tart, with more orange sweet-tart

MF: Medium body, restrained carbonation

Drinks easy enough, restrained enough on the sourness, you could have more than one, providing you could afford it

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Photo of jrenihan
4/5  rDev -4.3%
look: 4 | smell: 4 | taste: 4 | feel: 4 | overall: 4

Nose is very citrusy- heavy grapefruit scent. Flavour is moderately sour with lots of grapefruit. It tasts like San Pellegrino's grapefruit soda. Quite bubbly and refreshing. A bit one dimensional, but if you like grapefruit soda, this is your jam.

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Photo of crob3888
4.5/5  rDev +7.7%
look: 4.5 | smell: 4.5 | taste: 4.5 | feel: 4.5 | overall: 4.5

Poured a clear bright yellow, almost looked like a pilsner but with less head and little retention. Aromas and flavors are a beautiful melody of citrus, lemon, tart, very puckering. Good oak qualities too. Very little carbonation. Comes off like a tart wine in the mouthfeel, which is a very good thing. Loved it.

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Photo of SD-Alefan
4.54/5  rDev +8.6%
look: 4.25 | smell: 4.5 | taste: 4.5 | feel: 5 | overall: 4.5

Pours a slightly hazy, lovely gold with a bubbly white head.
The aroma is citrus, orange, a touch of vinegar, floral, a little bit of funk.
Taste is layered, complex and lovely. I got a quick hint of sweetness before the puckering citrus hit the taste buds. Citron, lemon, a little floral note, hints of oak.
Love the mouthfeel. It's light but remarkably soft and luscious.
Superb beer.

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Photo of macrosmatic
4.28/5  rDev +2.4%
look: 4.25 | smell: 4.25 | taste: 4.25 | feel: 4.5 | overall: 4.25

Thanks to eyebereej for sending this one! Reviewed from (long-standing) notes. Poured from a 375 mL bottle into a Brooklyn Brewery tulip glass.

A: Glowing gold, moderately hazy, with a good amount of visible carbonation. A finger’s worth of white head fades quickly to amorphous foam.

S: Lactic tart, cracker malts, and vinous dryness with some oak barrel tannins. Light citrus zest tang.

T: Lemony tart, citric acidity, and lactic sourness. Dry white wine and drier oak tannins with just a touch of cracker malt flavor. Puckeringly sour lemons and underripe oranges. Lactic sourness and orange peel lasts for a few beats after the swallow. This is definitely sour, but it's not obnoxiously overdone.

M: A light body, a good amount of carbonation sensation, and no alcohol presence to speak of.

O: Enjoyable for sure. Likely not one of my favorites of the Farmer's Reserve / Farm To Barrel series, but good.

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Photo of Marius
4.35/5  rDev +4.1%
look: 4.25 | smell: 4.25 | taste: 4.5 | feel: 4.25 | overall: 4.25

Bottle at home. Clear pale golden with a thin off-white head with poor retention. Notes of lemons, lemon zest, peaches, brett funk, fruit tartness, vanilla. Medium body, soft carbonation and texture and a tart, citrusy, refreshing finish.

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Photo of trevorpost
3.64/5  rDev -12.9%
look: 4 | smell: 3.75 | taste: 3.5 | feel: 3.5 | overall: 3.75

Clear golden yellow in color. Next to no head, totally disappears
Aroma is light orange, but mostly lactic acid and cereal grain
Flavor is similar. Lightly citrusy, more lemony tartness and a little cheesy funk.
Decent sour but far from exceptional. Tartness totally overloads other flavors, ends up being way less interesting than the description would suggest.

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Photo of superspak
4.1/5  rDev -1.9%
look: 4 | smell: 4 | taste: 4 | feel: 4 | overall: 4.5

375 ml bottle into tulip glass, bottled on 6/15/2016. Pours slightly hazy pale golden yellow color with a 1-2 finger fairly dense and fluffy white head with good retention, that reduces to a thin spotty lace cap that lingers. Light spotty lacing clings on the glass, with a moderate amount of streaming carbonation retaining the lace. Aromas of big sour lemon, lime, blood orange, grapefruit, green apple, citrus peel, white wine, oak, pepper, hay, straw, funk, wheat, cracker, light leather/white vinegar, and yeast/oak earthiness. Damn nice aromas with great balance and complexity of fruity/funky/acidic yeast, citrus fruits, wine barrel, and moderate pale malt notes; with great strength. Taste of big sour lemon, lime, blood orange, grapefruit, green apple, citrus peel, white wine, oak, pepper, hay, straw, funk, wheat, cracker, light leather/white vinegar, and yeast/oak earthiness. Good amount of fruity/lactic tart/sourness and yeast/tannic oak spiciness on the finish; with lingering notes of sour lemon, lime, blood orange, grapefruit, green apple, citrus peel, white wine, oak, pepper, hay, straw, funk, leather, white vinegar, and yeast/oak earthiness on the finish for a while. Great complexity, robustness, and balance fruity/funky/acidic yeast, citrus fruits, wine barrel, and moderate pale malt flavors; with a great malt/tannic/sourness balance, and zero astringent flavors after the finish; but lightly puckering. Moderate dryness from acidity/tannins, increasing through the glass. Medium carbonation and body; with a very smooth, moderately crisp, and acidic/tannic/grainy balanced mouthfeel that is great. Zero warming alcohol for 6.8%. Overall this is an excellent fruited sour ale! All around great complexity, robustness, and balance fruity/funky/acidic yeast, citrus fruits, wine barrel, and moderate pale malt flavors; very smooth, crisp, and easy to drink; despite the elevated acidic/tannic flavors. A very enjoyable offering.

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Photo of TheManiacalOne
3.99/5  rDev -4.5%
look: 3.75 | smell: 4 | taste: 4 | feel: 4 | overall: 4

On-tap 8/28/2016 at Natty Greene’s Tavern in North Attleboro, MA, served in a snifter glass.

A: The beer is a light cloudy yellow color, with a thin white head that fades quickly and leaves a very thin lace on the glass.

S: The aroma contains esters, tart citrus, wild yeast and light caramelized malts.

T: The taste starts out with a strong burst of sourness up front along with flavors of citrus and esters. Then some mild breadiness comes in from wild yeast and a thin malt character. The after-taste is very tart.

M: Crisp and smooth, light-to-medium body, medium carbonation, finish is clean and dry.

O: A little tasty, goes down easily, not too filling, good kick, good representation of style, this is a solid beer to drink for a while if you’re in the mood for the style.

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Photo of jfitzbrew
4.06/5  rDev -2.9%
look: 3.75 | smell: 4 | taste: 4.25 | feel: 3.75 | overall: 4

On draft. Semi-transparent yellow with absolutely no head. Smells nicely of lemons and lactic acid. Has a similar nice flavor profile with a little more complexity. Notes of orange zest. Feels a bit thin. Overall very enjoyable for the most part and would have it again.

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Photo of heygeebee
4.4/5  rDev +5.3%
look: 4.5 | smell: 4.5 | taste: 4.5 | feel: 4 | overall: 4.25

First from Almanac for me. Sky high price means it won't be a go-to.
Yes it's lemony, yes it's got some barrel, vinous notes as well, but it's also got a certain taste that I haven't had before - Geuze meets Wild Ale. Really complex.
Only downside is it's slightly thin, but really so drinkable apart from the price point

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Photo of DIM
3.5/5  rDev -16.3%
look: 2.5 | smell: 3.75 | taste: 3.75 | feel: 2.5 | overall: 3.5

Strong flavors of sour citrus rind, white wine, and some substantial lingering funk. This was surprisingly still, making this feel heavy seem like a bit of a chore to drink.

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Photo of CNoj012
3.83/5  rDev -8.4%
look: 3.75 | smell: 3.75 | taste: 4 | feel: 3.5 | overall: 3.75

This beer pours a hazy golden color with a fizzy, one finger white head that dissipates immediately and leaves no lacing behind.

Smell is tart lemon, some Brett funk, oak and citrus zest.

Taste is similar with hints of orange throughout. Moderately sour.

Feel is light and crisp. A little undercarbonated.

Overall this beer is good. Definitely not one of the better sours I've had from Almanac, and not one that I would that I would buy again.

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Photo of kojevergas
3.34/5  rDev -20.1%
look: 3.5 | smell: 3.25 | taste: 3.25 | feel: 3.5 | overall: 3.5

On-draught @ Toronado San Francisco. $6 a small pour.

Body is hazy. Orange-copper colour. Head recedes inside 2 minutes, leaving no lacing.

Aroma brings soft citrus, clean brettanomyces funkiness, bacterial tartness, lactic acidity, subdued inexpressive oak wood, and neutral malts (wheat, maybe?). Average aromatic intensity.

Soft, lacking the tart acidic punch observed in more aggressive sours. The citrus isn't as expressive as I'd hoped for, but there's some faint citrus (no juiciness or fresh zest or anything special, though). A blip of vanilla from the oak. Sourness is disappointingly meagre - 2/10 in terms of intensity.

Smooth, wet, slightly acidic. Light-bodied.

Overall, it's a nice entry in the farmer's reserve series, but it's far from Almanac's finest work.

Low B- (3.26) / WORTHY

12/24/16: 2nd impressions from a bottle.

BOTTLE: Bottled June 2015. Brown glass. Gorgeous label design with a yellow ring ribbon label at the bottom and an intricate screen-print. Branded pry-off crown cap. Suspended yeast is plainly visible floating in the beer. Small format (I think 375ml?). "Batch FR citrus. 1002 072315."

"Sour ale aged in wine barrels with Buddha's hand citron, blood orange & yuzu." 7% ABV.

APPEARANCE: Pours a gorgeous vibrant gilded pale copper. Clean but yeasty. The audibly fizzy head is thin and off-white, disappearing within 2 minutes without leaving any lacing.

AROMA: Mild sourness, mild citrus. Some white wine-soaked oak - I'd guess chardonnay but I don't pretend to know much about wine. Blood orange and yuzu don't emerge as vivid or distinct notes; there's only the vague albeit fresh zesty citrus. Not as expressive as I'd hoped for, but an appealing aroma all things considered with no off-flavours, faults, or overt alcohol. Slightly cidery; I get a blip of red apple and maybe even orchard pear. Pleasantly floral hop notes. A kiss of nectary or honey aromatics.

Sour lovers will crave more sourness and bacterial intricacy, and it'd be livelier with more of an intricate microflora character.

TASTE & TEXTURE: Has a red apple flavour that isn't too cidery but is accentuated beautifully by a soft crisp clean mouthfeel that's a bit juicy but also a bit dry. Certainly a refreshing brew.

All the citrus blurs together, with the blood orange failing to emerge as vivid and the yuzu lacking any distinctive character. It's just vague zesty citrus, but it works. Still, blood orange is often delicious in beers (Hangar 24 and Anderson Valley's blood orange beers come to mind) and yuzu works so well in Mikkeller's sours. The soft citrus is nice, and blends well with the prickly mild sourness, but as noted in my impressions about the aroma above, more sourness and more bacterial/microfloral intricacy would help get this to the next level.

Depth of flavour is nice but not impressive. Above average flavour duration. High acidity. Average flavour intensity.

It's well balanced, with an undertone of chardonnay giving the build a unifying natural cohesion. Oak isn't very evocative, and the wine barrel character could play to the notes in the base better. There's no harmony of texture and taste, but the former complements the latter pretty well in a general sense even though no specific flavours are elevated by the mouthfeel.

OVERALL: A drinkable brew that hides its surprisingly high ABV well but doesn't commit enough to its fruit and barrel notes. The citrus should sing in this beer, but it doesn't, and a cidery apple flavour - while nice - distracts from the fruity flavours that were meant to be the stars of the show. Absolutely worth trying, and it's more nice work in Almanac's increasingly impressive lineup, but it isn't a world class sour ale by any stretch, worthwhile though it is.

I love that they're putting out these sours in small format bottles, but the high price (especially in comparison to cheaper Belgian imports) will prevent me from revisiting it, and Almanac is going to need to up their game if they want to compete with Russian River just down the road or Lost Abbey way down the road, let alone the finest expressions of the style from outside California and the U.S.A.


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Photo of ThrewRedButter
4.4/5  rDev +5.3%
look: 4.25 | smell: 4.25 | taste: 4.5 | feel: 4.75 | overall: 4.25

L - Light orange, hazy body, and less than a finger of head that disappeared immediately.

S - Doughy/bready malts from the base beer, white grape, bacteria, yeast, some vanilla and a touch of lime

T - Superb lemon acidity and sour bacteria strains, acidic Buddha's hand, grapefruit, oak, vinous notes, lemon.

F - Light and refreshing. Feels lighter than 7%. Tart and sour with high drinkability

O - A great pairing of acidic citrus and sour bacteria. A real winner.

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Photo of Chieftog
4.49/5  rDev +7.4%
look: 4.25 | smell: 4 | taste: 4.75 | feel: 4.25 | overall: 4.75

Ok, I love a decent sour beer. This one is beyond decent so my review may not fit your particular tastes. It's a beautiful opaque almost straw color. Little head that almost goes away to be expected. I actually smell each fruit ... well
I don't know what Buddha's Hand smells like, so may not each but the others are clearly present in the smell and unfunny have the best nose. Also some funky sour smell. Tasted great. Fruit comes through just as clearly but not overwhelming or sweet. Definitely some funk but I've never had a beer that was too funky so I'd like a little more. Nice carbonation ... I don't like bubbly sour beers too much anyway since they tend to get champagney to me and not as drinkable. Overall, Almanac had yet to disappoint me with sour beers and there's not one that I wouldn't have again.

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Photo of Insert_Beer_Pun
4.22/5  rDev +1%
look: 4 | smell: 3.75 | taste: 4.5 | feel: 4.25 | overall: 4.25

Gave up on Almanac a little while back when most of their golden sours started tasting like the same beer. Revisited Citrus after letting it sit for a while. Not up to their first fruited beers but the citrus pops and the wine barrels round it out. Quite a nice beer and happy with the 375 ml format

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Photo of jlindros
4.24/5  rDev +1.4%
look: 4 | smell: 4.25 | taste: 4.25 | feel: 4.25 | overall: 4.25

Caught in the back of the fridge, bottled June 2014, hopefully still good.

Pours a mild fizzy head that sticks around a bit thanks to streaming bubbles, very little lacing, very clear with slight sediment floaties golden tan color.

Nose nice tartness, a little bacteria funk, sour lemon, citrus, nice generic sour funk, a little orange peel, zest notes, a juicy tangy citrus, big buttery oak as well and a vinous like wine, a crisp white wine, and a little sour blond base.

Taste is very sour, much more sour than I expected, like sucking on a lemon, speaking of which nice lemon tartness, sour citrus and pretty tangy, a different like tangy citrus, with lemon juice, citrus peel, zest, etc. NIce buttery oak again, a little toasty, with more vinous crisp white wine, a juicy Chardonnay like white wine with plenty of oak. Nice souring bacteria and funk, fair acidity, flemmy finish with lingering very sour lemon and tart citrus, a little candy blond malt.

Mouth is med bod, flemmy fair acidity and quite sour, nice carb.

Overall regardless of age this was quite nice, plenty of oak and white wine in there, still nice lemon and orange citrus and tangy, nice souring funk, pretty tasty, wonder how bright the citrus was fresh.

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Photo of jwc215
4.07/5  rDev -2.6%
look: 3.5 | smell: 4 | taste: 4.25 | feel: 4 | overall: 4

Bottled June 2015 - 375 ml bottle:

Pours clouded bright golden. A white head fades to a vanishing wisp. Minimal vanishing lace.

The smel is funky/wild - vinegar-like sour bread/yeast. A touch of white wine and a hint of orange.

The taste is sour/funky. Citrus peeks through the strong sour yeast. It has a white wine-like dryness in the finish.

It has a smooth, crisp light to medium body.

Certainly a sour one. Light citrus comes through. A white wine touch gives a nice dry twist to it.

Paid about 11 bucks for the 375 ml bottle.

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Photo of Dapper_dip
3.33/5  rDev -20.3%
look: 4.25 | smell: 1.25 | taste: 3.75 | feel: 4.75 | overall: 4

This one threw me way off when I opened it up, the first thing I did was take a sniff. It smelled like bad wine, like vinegar. But once I took a sip I was amazed at the flavor and the smoothness of it. This beer has definitely opened my eyes to a new world of beer... sour ales. Cannot wait to try another.

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Photo of Bluecrow
4.08/5  rDev -2.4%
look: 4 | smell: 4 | taste: 4.25 | feel: 3.75 | overall: 4

-on tap in a tulip: pale, cloudy Amber-orange. Aroma and flavor match; acid and fruit dominate. Almost now effervescence by sight, but carbonation is just right

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Farmer's Reserve Citrus from Almanac Beer Co.
Beer rating: 93 out of 100 with 721 ratings