Flor d’Lees 2014 | Crooked Stave Artisan Beer Project

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Flor d’Lees 2014Flor d’Lees 2014
160 Ratings
Flor d’Lees 2014Flor d’Lees 2014

Brewed by:
Crooked Stave Artisan Beer Project
Colorado, United States

Style: American Wild Ale

Alcohol by volume (ABV): 5.00%

Availability: Limited (brewed once)

Notes / Commercial Description:
Golden Sour Aged in Oak Barrels

Added by Prospero on 11-19-2014

This beer is retired; no longer brewed.

User Ratings & Reviews
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Ratings: 160 |  Reviews: 17
Reviews by G-Hawk:
Photo of G-Hawk
3.75/5  rDev -8.3%

More User Reviews:
Photo of kojevergas
3.55/5  rDev -13.2%
look: 3 | smell: 3.5 | taste: 3.5 | feel: 3.75 | overall: 3.75

BOTTLE: bottled Nov 2014. Batch #1. 5.0% ABV. Brown glass. 12.7 fl oz. Beeswax-ed over pry-off pressure cap.

Reviewed live as a wild ale per the label. Served cold into a tulip and allowed to warm over the course of consumption.

No bubble show forms as it's poured.

HEAD: 1 finger wide. White colour. Okay thickness. Not as creamy or full as would be ideal. Leaves no lacing on the sides of the glass as it recedes. Retention is 3-4 minutes - certainly above average.

BODY: Cloudy dull copper. Clean; no yeast particulate (incl. lees - which you might expect given the beer's name) or hop sediment is visible.

Appears aptly carbonated. Far from unique or special, but generally appealing.

AROMA: Dampened oak, Belgian golden malts, heavy brettanomyces-induced funkiness, floral hop attributes, and modest sourness - maybe a 5/10 in terms of intensity. I'd guess it's from lactobacillus; it lacks the pungent more complex aromatics of true lambicus yeast or bacterial pedio. Pleasant and inviting, but I could go for more sourness. Tart fruit would also help.

Aromatic intensity is mild. No alcohol or other off-notes are detectable.

TASTE: The dominant smacky sourness is about a 6/10 in terms of sourness, and its contained clinical feel suggests lactobacillus and brettanomyces were the only fermenters. I crave more bacterial sourness and sour intensity, but overall it's a balanced enjoyable brew with sufficient complexity and subtlety. Hop profile is generic and floral - which is apt for the style and flavour profile. A neutral grain base fills out the body, but there's none of the pesky cereal character I usually notice in Belgian gueuze. Green apple. Fruitskin. Sour mash hay and wheat. The Belgian golden malt backbone gets buried beneath the wild sourness, but the dampened oak is present throughout, lending the flavour profile a nice cohesion. It does taste like a gestalt whole, but it's admittedly plain for a sour; there just isn't much intricacy or nuance lurking beneath the surface.

Depth of flavour is average. Flavour intensity is above average. Flavour duration is fairly high; the sourness lingers nicely in the aftertaste.

TEXTURE: Wonderfully smacky on the palate. It's refreshing and smooth yet also dry, which helps coax out a bit more depth of flavour from the taste. Medium-bodied, crisp, and well-carbonated. Acidic.

This texture helps elevate the beer beyond the taste, and complements the flavour profile well. But it doesn't feel custom-tailored specifically to this beer.

OVERALL: Extremely easy to drink. An enjoyable wild ale from Crooked Stave, but I doubt I'd buy it again at its unreasonably high price point. I can't see this really developing much with age either. I'll enjoy finishing my glass and would recommend it to friends, but it's not worth going out of your way for. Just a solid sour from Crooked Stave without many frills.

Low B

 2,897 characters

Photo of StonedTrippin
4.57/5  rDev +11.7%
look: 4.25 | smell: 4.75 | taste: 4.5 | feel: 4.25 | overall: 4.75

im quite surprised this doesnt have higher ratings already, its really good. i heard it is replacing l'brett, and i think i like it better, certainly i like it better as young beer. the cereal aspect of the grain in that beer is not present in this one, its more of a clean and light wheat base, and it seems to be a little more lemony and puckery both, better carbonated, and just a more expressive wild ale. that said, fans of crooked stave might find this to be an odd release. its so simple compared to all the others they do, and seems a regression rather than an evolution in terms of creativity and the way crooked stave has been trending. that said though, the beer is awesome, funky and woody and quite sour in there with the brett. nice carbonation and enough body to not be thin, its just very good wild ale all up. im sure we will start to see all kinds of fruits and barrels going on with this most excellent base.

edit: just had a batch one last night, abut four years old now, and this has totally transformed into something quite epic, lambic through and through, impossibly delicate though, crystal clear golden color and very fizzy from the waxed bottle, soft tropical notes in nose and taste once i get past the lambic type pucker and mouthwatering from just smelling it. papaya and pineapple and chardonnay and kiwi, even peach, sweet for a second like that but then bone dry, no more acidic than it ever was, but much more nuanced, complex, and developed. this is drinking as well as any crooked stave beer i have ever had right now, and i am raising some scores to reflect that. its insanely good now, world class even, we were all blown away by how well this has done over time. a highlight in their portfolio for sure.

 1,743 characters

Photo of t2grogan
4.25/5  rDev +3.9%
look: 4.25 | smell: 4.25 | taste: 4.25 | feel: 4.25 | overall: 4.25

Photo of chossboss
4.16/5  rDev +1.7%
look: 3.75 | smell: 4 | taste: 4.25 | feel: 4.25 | overall: 4.25

Photo of Prospero
4.44/5  rDev +8.6%
look: 4.5 | smell: 4.25 | taste: 4.5 | feel: 4.5 | overall: 4.5

Photo of mrw1zard
4.14/5  rDev +1.2%
look: 4.25 | smell: 4 | taste: 4.25 | feel: 4.25 | overall: 4

Photo of PSU_Mike
3.97/5  rDev -2.9%
look: 4.5 | smell: 3.75 | taste: 4 | feel: 4 | overall: 4

Photo of MattyG85
4.45/5  rDev +8.8%
look: 4 | smell: 4.5 | taste: 4.5 | feel: 4.25 | overall: 4.5

Poured from a 12 oz. bottle into a chalice. Batch #2 Bottled in June 2015.

Appearance: Pours a hazy yellowish orange with a moderate amount of bubbles. About one finger of white head that settles into a thin patch.

Smell: A yeasty, sour, and juicy aroma with a big scent of Brett and citrus fruit. Big upfront scent of Brett lacto funk along with some hints of oak. Big zesty mix of fruit with hints of lemon, orange, melon, white grapes, and cherry. Malt hints of wheat, straw, and grains. Not much of a hop scent is noticeable. A very good sour aroma.

Taste: Like it smells, a yeasty, juicy, and sour Wild ale taste with notes of Brett yeast, fruit, and oak. Upfront funky presence of Brett and lacto yeast. Subtle notes of oak and wood. Big fruit presence with notes of lemon zest, orange, white grapes, green apple, cherry, and melon. Soft malt notes of straw, wheat, and grains. Hops are very light. A really nice funky and sour taste.

Mouthfeel: Light to medium bodied with a moderate amount of carbonation. Crisp, acidic, and pretty drying and smooth.

Overall: A very good take on a Sour ale. Good funky yeast and fruit flavors.

 1,145 characters

Photo of Cynic-ale
4.04/5  rDev -1.2%
look: 4 | smell: 4.25 | taste: 4 | feel: 3.75 | overall: 4

Photo of jbogner
4.84/5  rDev +18.3%
look: 4.5 | smell: 4.75 | taste: 5 | feel: 4.75 | overall: 4.75

Photo of Schlafly33
4/5  rDev -2.2%
look: 4 | smell: 4 | taste: 4 | feel: 4 | overall: 4

Photo of acurtis
4.15/5  rDev +1.5%
look: 4 | smell: 4 | taste: 4.25 | feel: 4 | overall: 4.25

Photo of Shawner
4.1/5  rDev +0.2%
look: 4 | smell: 4 | taste: 4.25 | feel: 4 | overall: 4

Photo of ONovoMexicano
4.13/5  rDev +1%
look: 4.5 | smell: 4 | taste: 4.25 | feel: 4 | overall: 4

Served in a Belgian tulip from a 375 mL bottle.

The pour produces a substantial pale white head of the fizzy, airy variety. It recedes quickly into a splotchy lace over the body. The body is bright gold and cloudy with the occasional gas bubble shooting upward. 4.5

Sour and lemony nose here. Funky and earthy notes upon second examination. Almost reminds me of a gose or berliner weisse, perhaps even offering a smattering of salt. 4

Tart and lemony up front, faint funk and floral middle, and then a minerally finish similar to some wines. The aftertaste shows a bit of the malt characteristic and reminds me of a cracker: slightly sweet and bready. There also seems to be a saline-like current to this beer. 4.25

Light, tart and easy-drinking. Not quite as refreshing as the gose or berliner that I assume it to be is, but very nice. 4

 842 characters

Photo of Sammy
3.9/5  rDev -4.6%
look: 3.75 | smell: 3.75 | taste: 4 | feel: 3.75 | overall: 4

Photo of aleckpa
3.61/5  rDev -11.7%
look: 3.75 | smell: 3.25 | taste: 3.75 | feel: 4 | overall: 3.5

Photo of Alieniloquium
3.2/5  rDev -21.8%
look: 3 | smell: 3 | taste: 3.25 | feel: 3.5 | overall: 3.25

375 mL bottle poured into a snifter.

Appearance - Pale yellow and a little hazy. Almost no head. The thinnest of collars.

Smell - Doesn't say so on the label, but it smells like a white wine barrel. Oak and vanilla. Not the most pungent of beers.

Taste - Lightly tart. Some lemon. Oak is stronger than everything else. Dry. White wine lingers in the finish.

Mouthfeel - Light. Medium low carbonation.

Overall - Bland is a harsh descriptor, but probably apt. What flavor it has is good, but it's... delicate.

 522 characters

Photo of Vonerichs
3.84/5  rDev -6.1%
look: 3.5 | smell: 3.75 | taste: 4 | feel: 3.75 | overall: 3.75

Photo of jason_nwx
3.97/5  rDev -2.9%
look: 3.75 | smell: 4.25 | taste: 4 | feel: 3.75 | overall: 3.75

Photo of Keith_R
4.5/5  rDev +10%
look: 4.5 | smell: 4.5 | taste: 4.5 | feel: 4.5 | overall: 4.5

Photo of GRG1313
3.75/5  rDev -8.3%
look: 3.75 | smell: 3.75 | taste: 3.75 | feel: 3.75 | overall: 3.75

Photo of TheGent
4.09/5  rDev 0%
look: 3.75 | smell: 4 | taste: 4.25 | feel: 4 | overall: 4

A: Pours a hazy golden straw, yellow grapefruit juice color. I emptied the bottle into my goblet and we have some speckles of yeast floating at the bottom. No visible carbonation and no head.

S: The nose is straightforward. Acidic lemon juice, a touch of white vinegar, a dab of butter, and faint notes of that earthy/fishy Vietnamese spring roll sauce.

T: Relatively high level of acidity that translates into sour lemon, white vinegar, with some faint woody notes of oak and dry champagne.

M: Considering the lack of visible carbonation this beer is effervescent, and smooth to boot. The finish is dry

O: This is a pretty sour beer, and I like it. There's really no complexity to it, but if you want a mouth-puckering sour beer this will absolutely hit the spot.

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Photo of kbuzz
4.33/5  rDev +5.9%
look: 4 | smell: 4.75 | taste: 4.25 | feel: 4 | overall: 4.25

Photo of Westmeister
4.04/5  rDev -1.2%
look: 4 | smell: 3.75 | taste: 4.25 | feel: 4 | overall: 4

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Flor d’Lees 2014 from Crooked Stave Artisan Beer Project
Beer rating: 4.09 out of 5 with 160 ratings