Nightmare On Brett Raspberry
Crooked Stave Artisan Beer Project

Nightmare On Brett RaspberryNightmare On Brett Raspberry
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Brett Beer
Ranked #3
Ranked #670
4.44 | pDev: 6.31%
Crooked Stave Artisan Beer Project
Colorado, United States
Nightmare On Brett RaspberryNightmare On Brett Raspberry
Notes: Dark sour ale aged in Leopold Bros whiskey barrels with raspberries
Reviews: 23 | Ratings: 130 | Log in to view all ratings and sort
Photo of REVZEB
REVZEB from Illinois

4.56/5  rDev +2.7%
look: 4.5 | smell: 4.75 | taste: 4.5 | feel: 4.5 | overall: 4.5

Pours like all others in series: medium black with a brown head, moderate carbonation that dies down. Smell just explodes with fresh raspberry both the skin and fruit, with a mellow whiskey backing, brett, and general funk, berries and dark fruit. Taste is lead by the raspberry as well, but now more puree like, with blackberry, pomegranate, plum, tootsie roll, and date before huge brett, funk, wood, and whiskey sweep you up to the slightly sour finish. Feel is slightly tart/sour with brett, wood, booze, and funk helping shape. The raspberry while adding a great dynamic to smell and taste, does smooth over the complex body a bit compared to others in the series

Sep 22, 2020
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brentk56 from North Carolina

4.47/5  rDev +0.7%
look: 4 | smell: 4.5 | taste: 4.5 | feel: 4.5 | overall: 4.5

Appearance: Pours coffee colored with ruby highlights around the edge; the one finger head slowly fades to a film, leaving spotty lacing

Smell: Rapsberry jam and a vinous, oaky red wine character; the tartness is apparent as is a hint of chocolate

Taste: The raspberry combines with the underlying acetic character of the beer creating a puckery aspect; oak and vague hints of whiskey and chocolate emerge, after the swallow; the finish is dry and tart

Mouthfeel: Medium to full body with moderate carbonation

Overall: Now this is more like it - after having been somewhat disappointed in the base and Apple Whiskey versions, this one comes through with complexity and carbonation; after five years in the bottle, it is quite impressive

May 25, 2020
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SHODriver from North Carolina

4.5/5  rDev +1.4%
look: 4.5 | smell: 4.5 | taste: 4.5 | feel: 4.5 | overall: 4.5

A: Poured into a Duvel tulip to an essentially black beer topped by a dense and slightly rocky finger of tan head which fades quickly to a collar around the edge of the glass with minimal lacing.
S: Smells of intense raspberries and funk with a touch of roasted malt and chocolate
T: Taste is raspberries and dark chocolate with some nice building sourness along with a solid amount of funk. On the swallow there's more chocolate and raspberries with a good amount of sourness and bright fruit notes with some light roasted malt and dark chocolate that lingers at the very back end.
M: This beer has a moderate amount of body but it is slightly on the lighter side. Carbonation is effervescent without being prickly while the beer has a drying finish due to the acidity.
O: Overall this one is awesome. Great fruit flavors and a nice baseline of complexity from the base beer. This is definitely an interesting beer to drink and one to try if you're a fan of the style.

Dec 20, 2019
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KensWorld from Florida

4.89/5  rDev +10.1%
look: 4.75 | smell: 5 | taste: 4.75 | feel: 5 | overall: 5

750ml into goblet. Dark ruby mahogany. Cherry and chocolate on the nose. Taste is sour cherry and raspberries with plenty of Brett funk, very very sour. Opens up as it warms with complexity. The raspberries seem to be at total balance with the base sourness and are probably making this even more tart. Slight barrel feel as i get to the end but wish there were more whiskey character.

One of the most intense fruit sours I've ever tried.

Jan 25, 2018
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Pray_For_Mojo from Colorado

4.3/5  rDev -3.2%
look: 3.25 | smell: 4.5 | taste: 4.25 | feel: 4.25 | overall: 4.5

Appearance: brown and cloudy, or rather opaque. Muddy. No bubbles. Flat in appearance. Not a very attractive beer to say the least.

Aroma: super fresh raspberry and raspberry jam. A slight hint of oak or almost raspberry-seed nuttiness.

Flavor: very pronounced raspberry and toward the upper end of tart. After the raspberry flavor fades comes some chocolate flavor – more like tootsie roll flavor. No alcohol flavor or warmth despite the 9.67% abv.

Mouthfeel: medium. Enjoyable. Heavier than I expected given how acidic this beer is, but appropriate weight to carry the abv%.

Overall: damn tasty. Quite fruit forward without being too sweet or artificial tasting. This is one of Crooked Stave’s better offerings. Very good.

Sep 14, 2017
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Bitterbill from Wyoming

4.61/5  rDev +3.8%
look: 4.25 | smell: 4.5 | taste: 4.75 | feel: 4.25 | overall: 4.75

Pours almost a pitch black if it weren’t for the red , small pinkish head of foam. Minimal lacing. Smells of tart raspberries, mild funk, wood, has some acetic aromas. Smacked in my face with the tart raspberries, a bit of funk and wood, much sourness in an acetic kind of way. This is like I asked Crooked Stave to brew a beer with exactly the proper mix of ingredients that I wanted them to and they did it. Beer of 2017 for me? Perhaps.

Jun 23, 2017
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metter98 from New York

4.3/5  rDev -3.2%
look: 4 | smell: 4 | taste: 4.5 | feel: 4 | overall: 4.5

A: The beer is essentially jet black in color—only traces of very dark red are present near the edges of the glass when it is held up to a bright light. It poured with only a narrow ring of off white bubbles around the collar of the glass.
S: Moderate aromas of raspberries and blackberries are present in the nose.
T: Like the smell, the taste has flavors of concentrated raspberry juice that lingers throughout the aftertaste. There is a lot of sourness, which lingers throughout the finish as well.
M; It feels medium-bodied on the palate and has a moderate amount of carbonation.
O; This beer is so dark that it looks like a stout, but it drinks like a sour. It also hides any traces of alcohol very well.

Serving type: bottle

Jun 11, 2017
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LAp from Ohio

4.53/5  rDev +2%
look: 4.5 | smell: 4.5 | taste: 4.5 | feel: 4.75 | overall: 4.5

Pours ruby red with a tinge of oak-brown. Nose is sweet, fermenting raspberries - a brett raspberry compote. Palate follows the nose, but as you move through the glass, the taste acquires a deep, chocolatey note. Mouthfeel is smooth, medium-bodied.

Feb 26, 2017
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JMUbrewz from Virginia

4.65/5  rDev +4.7%
look: 4.5 | smell: 4.5 | taste: 4.75 | feel: 4.5 | overall: 4.75

Bottled Dec. 2015.

Wow, this is an exceptional AWA right here. Pours a dark red, with a ruby hue. Smells like straight up raspberry jam. Whiskey, oak, vanilla, and a TON of raspberries in this one. Very tart, but the sweet raspberry balances it right out. Zero heat at nearly 10%. This was an absolute treat, and I would love to try the other fruited variants. These CS sours are legit and I need more of them.

Feb 22, 2017
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StonedTrippin from Colorado

4.38/5  rDev -1.4%
look: 4.25 | smell: 4.25 | taste: 4.5 | feel: 4 | overall: 4.5

a real special beverage here, they have both 2015 and 2016 on tap at the source right now, which means we get to compare next to one another two really special beers from these guys. they both have an almost dissolved grape jelly purple color to them, as an undertone behind the dark chocolate colored base beer, maybe a little deeper in the older one, but neither has a raspberry redness, and neither carries much head. aroma is tart and tangy in both, this beer has a ton of acidity. the funk is higher on the older one, the jammy fruit and dark chocolate notes more intense in the newer, and that is true in the taste too, although they are both surprisingly different from each other. i think the older one is more cohesive, settled down on the fruit and less overtly sour, while the newer one has a lot more chocolate too it, desserty and sweet, also very acidic, also very good. the berries taste fresh in both to me, and authentic too, but maybe a little less intense in the older version, although there is a lot of soul in both beers. i think this is among their best work from a pure flavor standpoint, but its heavy drinking and super sour, almost too much, and would benefit i think from more carbonation and somewhat less mass, its almost syrupy at the height of the fruit. great beer though, and to have them side by side is a treat. i think that experience builds a strong case for sitting on this one a year or so, really comes together. a deadset ringer from crooked stave here, worthy of the now astronomical price tag in the new large format. frustrating and arrogant, but worth it...

Feb 21, 2017
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Franziskaner from Missouri

4.09/5  rDev -7.9%
look: 3.75 | smell: 4 | taste: 4.25 | feel: 4 | overall: 4

Black in color with minimal light penetration. No head whatsoever. The nose is comprised mostly of raspberries, but I'm also getting the sweet whiskey barrel notes. The taste is primarily tart Brettanomyces and dark malt. The raspberries are also in play, but the sweet flavor from the whiskey barrels is a faint background flavor. The mouth is lightly chewy and sticky.

Feb 05, 2017
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kevanb from Illinois

3.64/5  rDev -18%
look: 4 | smell: 3.75 | taste: 3.5 | feel: 4 | overall: 3.5

375ml bottle, poured into a Crooked Stave snifter glass, enjoyed on 11.28.16, reviewed from Tasting Journal.

The beer pours a dark burgundy brown color, almost like a cherry cola, reddish tint with khaki head, two fingers tall that has good retention and yields spotted lace. The aroma is great, tons of raspberry and cherry, very tart and fleshy, whiskey barrel is strong, quite strong as it warms bringing out pitted stone fruits, chocolate, dark grains and plenty of acetic sour character. The flavors are good, strong raspberry and cherry off the bat like the nose suggested, loads of dark bittersweet chocolate, oak, mild toffee forward bourbon, red wine acidity and vinous and sour grapey stone fruit flavors and strong funkiness. The mouthfeel is okay, medium body, coats well, crisp and abrasive carbonation that is very lively and a tart, puckeringly dry finish.

Verdict: A nice dark sour from Crooked Stave. Tons of complexity, but too harsh and bitingly sour, very acidic and somewhat unbalanced. This has all the components to be an excellent wild ale, but just doesn't bring them together as well.

Jan 14, 2017
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Sammy from Canada

4.3/5  rDev -3.2%
look: 4 | smell: 4 | taste: 4.5 | feel: 4 | overall: 4.5

Stunningly delicious Dark red colour with a tiny amount of head. Big raspberry and malt and slightly whiskey aroma. Very smooth above average mouthfeel. Gorgeous raspberry flavour, with more sophistication as it warms. Excellent. 10% alcohol rating number 1250.

Dec 12, 2016
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macrosmatic from Florida

3.85/5  rDev -13.3%
look: 3.75 | smell: 3.75 | taste: 3.75 | feel: 4.25 | overall: 4

Reviewed from notes. Poured from 12.7 oz. bottle into a Cigar City Brewing goblet.

A: At first look, this seems dark brown with ruby highlights around the edges - but I think it’s actually extremely dark red and nearly opaque. Forms a finger's worth of light tan head that fades quickly atop low carbonation after the initial blush of bubbles.

S: Tart raspberries, mild acidity, oak, and very mild whiskey. It comes across as almost vinous. A heady, earthy funk emerges as well after it warms some.

T: Tart but juicy raspberries, lactic acidity, oak and dry tannins. Mild vanilla notes. I guess there might be some whiskey here, but they're not really coming through much. Similar to the nose, it has more of a vinous character than whiskey. The acetic acid gets more pronounced near the swallow. There’s some funk near the end, but it’s restrained. Tart acidity – mixed lactic, acetic and fruit – in the hang.

M: Medium body, low carbonation sensation, and the alcohol presence is lower than expected.

O: A really enjoyable, albeit confusing, beer. There isn’t much Brett presence, and the barrel character is there but with almost no whiskey. Great fresh fruit flavors and a nice tartness. But not what I expected, and I’m not sure much different than Raspberry Origins. Still, quite enjoyable.
NOTE: For pure appeal of the beer, I'd estimate a 4.30 or so. Ratings given reflect the failure to deliver on the label description.

Nov 19, 2016
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dar482 from New York

4.6/5  rDev +3.6%
look: 4.25 | smell: 4.75 | taste: 4.5 | feel: 4.5 | overall: 4.75

Beer comes in a dark brown to black.

The aroma hits of fresh tart raspberries, medium plus acidity, a bit of toast, hints of malt sweetness and vanilla.

Flavor offers medium plus sharp tart of green apple, tart raspberries and seeds, sesame, a bit of depth of the roasted malts and kiss of sweetness, wonderfully dry and tannic.

Oct 17, 2016
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Marius from Netherlands

4.5/5  rDev +1.4%
look: 4.5 | smell: 4.5 | taste: 4.5 | feel: 4.5 | overall: 4.5

On tap at CBC 2016. Dark ruby pour with a red head. Raspberries, fruit sourness, some nice barrel (oak and vanilla) notes in the background. Nice one.

Jul 20, 2016
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vfgccp from New York

3.99/5  rDev -10.1%
look: 4 | smell: 3.75 | taste: 4.25 | feel: 3.5 | overall: 4

A - Deep mahogany body. Cream / tan head with a pink tint. Nice retention and lace.

S - Soft, lightly chocolately nose with pumpernickel, and a touch of black cherry.

T - Oak and pumpernickel with an aggressive, classic american-wild sour note. Tart, rich, twangy unripe raspberry is loaded through the center.

M - Medium full, but a little chalky

O - A delicious raspberry sour. A nice NoB variant.

Jul 10, 2016
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Damian from Massachusetts

4.11/5  rDev -7.4%
look: 4.5 | smell: 4.75 | taste: 3.75 | feel: 3.5 | overall: 4.25

Drank from a 375 ml (12.7 fl oz) bottle purchased at Hill Farmstead Brewery, Greensboro Bend, VT
December 2015
Served in a tulip
Thanks to my friend Bill for grabbing me this bottle.

This was a truly nightmare-ish looking beer. The color of the body was akin to that of a very dark brown/black mixed with blood red. Oily and shimmery in the glass. A finger-tall crop of tight, pink-tinged mocha froth capped the body. The head dropped relatively quickly to a thick, lasting film of bubbles. Spotty droplets of lacing trickled down the glass.

The nose was pure raspberry goodness. Freshly puréed raspberries came to mind. Really potent. Touch of chocolate. Moderately sour. Red wine and/or red wine vinegar was noticeable. Pretty straightforward but very enticing. As the beer warmed, the raspberry notes intensified.

The flavor profile was much more tart and acidic than I anticipated. Raspberries were noticeable on the front end, but the raspberry presence was definitely much stronger in the nose. Subtle balsamic notes. The acidity came through big time in the center and on the back end. Loads of red wine vinegar. Intensely sour. The beer finished with mild oaky tannins and a lingering lemon-like acidity. At nearly 10% ABV, the alcohol was very well hidden. I never would have guessed that this beer was aged in whiskey barrels.

The mouthfeel was light, frothy and fluffy. Almost a touch airy. The beer contained a large bubbled, fairly aggressive effervescence.

Nightmare On Brett Raspberry had a beautiful appearance and an amazing raspberry aroma, but the flavor profile was exceedingly tart and acidic. Perhaps a heftier malt presence could have added some balance and also improved the mouthfeel.

Jun 04, 2016
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Ciocanelu from Romania

4.4/5  rDev -0.9%
look: 4.25 | smell: 4.75 | taste: 4.25 | feel: 4.5 | overall: 4.25

Dark brown color with red hues and pinkish head. Aroma has dark cherries, raspberries, dried plums, a hint of dried figs. Taste starts sour and quite acidic, really fruity, lots of raspberries and cherries, just a hint of whiskey but the wood barrel is present. Medium body, quite smooth but also slightly acidic. Excellent, complex aroma, taste is slightly metallic but still really good.

May 18, 2016
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eppie82 from Illinois

4.5/5  rDev +1.4%
look: 4.5 | smell: 4.5 | taste: 4.5 | feel: 4.5 | overall: 4.5

From bottle into a teku glass.

Deep dark blood red color upon pour. Foam head quickly dissipates upon pour. Full robust raspberry aroma. The familiar brett is noticeable mid-end of taste. Juicy raspberry flavor taste, and nice mild tart finish. The whiskey barrel with raspberries work perfectly. This has no indication that it's almost 10% abv. Very easy to drink. A tremendous sour I'd drink again.

May 12, 2016
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Skellbop from New York

4.35/5  rDev -2%
look: 4.25 | smell: 4.25 | taste: 4.5 | feel: 4.25 | overall: 4.25

L - dark ruby with a thin, slight red head; some lacing
S - tart and sweet, raspberries
T - taste follows the nose, with a very nice balance of tart, raspberry flavor and Brett; slight bitterness on the back
F - finely carbonated
O - very nice, reminds me of Mattina rossa from Allagash

May 06, 2016
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BEERchitect from Kentucky

4.46/5  rDev +0.5%
look: 4.25 | smell: 4.5 | taste: 4.5 | feel: 4.25 | overall: 4.5

With the depth, complexity and ominous darkness of nightmares but also with the seduction, softness and juiciness of dreams, Nightmare on Brett is both heaven and hell in a glass.

The sinister elixir pours dark ruby with the curious ribbons of raspberry and blood red at its margins. A soft and creamy head wets the palate with its very first pass of the nose. Its sour and achingly ripe fruit scents draw the nose with the seduction of radiant raspberry. Red wine, balsamic, hard candy sour fruit round out the scent while its juicy and lightly candied sweetness latches onto the tongue.

The ale explodes on the middle palate as the robust juiciness of vine-ripened raspberries melt and seep deeply onto the tastebuds, but also bringing impressions of black cherry, plum, prune, red grape and vinous red wine, blueberry, blackberry and light raisin. All that succulence dries to medium weight as the acidity of balsamic, cider and dry wine sharpen and sour the finish. Oak, vanilla and coconut round out the barrel-laden taste with hints of brine, cork and musty attic woods.

Medium-light for sour ale, the beer's added heft is countered by surprisingly high alcohol spice. Lightly prickling, the alcohol amplifies acidity and provides the peppery warmth to offset the sweetness and body. Lingering dark fruit, wine and char ensure a complex and highly drinkable finish- one that sees the bottom of the glass far too soon.

Apr 19, 2016
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SinjaminBentek from Nebraska

4.77/5  rDev +7.4%
look: 5 | smell: 4.75 | taste: 4.75 | feel: 4.75 | overall: 4.75

375ml bottle poured into a snifter.

Appearance - Dark brown.

Smell - Funky sour raspberries! Very strong nose!

Taste - Super sour raspberries! Tangy, tart, delicious!

Mouthfeel - Full body. Low carbonation.

Overall - This is one of the best offerings from Crooked Stave. Highly recommend!

Grade (A)

Mar 01, 2016
Nightmare On Brett Raspberry from Crooked Stave Artisan Beer Project
Beer rating: 96 out of 100 with 130 ratings