Saboteur | Odell Brewing Company

very good
144 Reviews

Brewed by:
Odell Brewing Company
Colorado, United States

Style: American Wild Ale

Alcohol by volume (ABV): 10.00%

Availability: Limited (brewed once)

Notes / Commercial Description:
No notes at this time.

Added by Oxymoron on 04-23-2010

This beer is retired; no longer brewed.

For Trade:
User Reviews
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Reviews: 144 | Ratings: 293
Photo of jmarsh123
2.38/5  rDev -38.7%
look: 3.5 | smell: 3 | taste: 2 | feel: 2.5 | overall: 2

Thanks to d4radio for the bottle!

Pours a deep murky brown with a huge light tan head that's pretty foamy. Good retention.

The strongest smell I get is sour cherries. Can definitely tell there is some maltiness to this and lots of brett.

Starts out with some oxidized caramel sweetness. The brett takes over and adds a sour note although just general sourness, not the cherries from the nose. Finishes slightly earthy and bitter with a touch of oak. Sourness is very minor.

Lots of carbonation. A little too much really with a medium mouthfeel.

Odell missed the mark on this one. The flavor profile completely clash and it ends up just tasting like the one time my homebrewed brown ale got infected. The sourness does not at all complement the base beer in this case. Slightly better as it warmed, but still really difficult to get through a glass.

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Photo of Powderhornphil
2.52/5  rDev -35.1%
look: 3 | smell: 2.25 | taste: 2.5 | feel: 3 | overall: 2.5

At first I just marked this as a had and gave it a 2.

But I decided that I would expand to write a full review. Had this bottle about a year. I could not finish the bottle.

Cracked it open and it smells very musty. Not really appealing to me. Overly funky. Damp wood scents come through as well.

Pours dingy brown abundant white, foamy head. And tastes very funky a little sour. The flavors comming through are musty, sour pineapple. Seems to be some off flavors coming through that were not completely intentional.

Poured out much of the bottle.

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Photo of craytonic
2.61/5  rDev -32.7%
look: 3.5 | smell: 2.5 | taste: 2.5 | feel: 3 | overall: 2.5

Appearance: Enormous head, not really any lacing. Dark mahogany-amber pour.

Smell: Off diaper element and a metallic twang. Behind that lots of dark fruits and brown sugar.

Taste: Again, by the diapers and a metallic twang, with buttery chardonnay elements, dark fruits, brown sugar, and balsamic vinegar. Slightly sweet with tons of malt. Very messy and muddled.

Mouthfeel: Slightly aggressive carbonation; medium body.

Overall: Definitely some off flavors in this one; not my favorite AWA

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Photo of morimech
2.65/5  rDev -31.7%
look: 3 | smell: 3 | taste: 2.5 | feel: 3.5 | overall: 2

The latest release. Even after chilling the bottle this was an explosive pour. Tulip was filled with foam. It took a long while before the foam settled to a thick cap. Curtains of lace is left on the glass. The liquid is a dark brown once it forms. Annoying pour throughout the bottle.

I smell wood. Not oak neccessarily, but decaying wood. I also get some mint and herbal elements. Not what I was expecting.

About the only exciting thing about the flavor of this beer is the woody flavor. And that is not all that impressive. It is earthy, I'll give it that. Very herbal and medicinal.

Seems the carbonation lost all its pop in the foam during the pour. It does nothing to really improve the body. The body is moderate in heft.

Another disappointing beer from Odell in the large format. I think I am done spending good money on these beers as I do not think I have enjoyed a one.

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Photo of tectactoe
2.66/5  rDev -31.4%
look: 4.25 | smell: 3.25 | taste: 2 | feel: 3.75 | overall: 2.25

Thanks to Jeff for the bottle share. It pours a deep, deep, burnt-brown color, almost appearing pitch black once it finally makes it to the glass. It's completely opaque, capped off with a thick and lasting, foamy tan head; it's huge, vibrant, and leaves some nice patches of chunky lacing on its way down.

The aroma is pretty enigmatic; a mild fruity and heavily floral mixture, bombarded with a slew of many, many other things. Mild cocoa powder, vanilla hints, plums and dates, licorice, dry oak, weird spices like sage or coriander, and a hefty dose of cheese-cloth funk, moldy hay, and horsey barnyard. Doesn't smell very tart, mainly just floral and funky. Not bad, but really, really weird.

Some roast and chocolate exhibits the first sip; this beer is surprisingly not sour at all. I kind of went into thing expecting something along the lines of a Flanders Oud Bruin, a la La Folie, but I was quite mistaken. The flavor profile is more strange and weird than the aroma, and I already know I'm going to have a difficult time describing this one.

Earth, dirt, deep black licorice, heavy perfume and florals, laced with rotten cherry, wet and moldy wood, funky cheese, sweat, horseblanket and musty cellar, and a touch of pineapple from the Brett. Unabashed funk, to an unnecessary degree. This beer is not very good, and as it got warmer, it only got worse. The funk leaves a pretty rough aftertaste and makes this beer hard to drink.

The problem is the lack of balance. All funk and pungent, perfume-like floral notes combine on your palate to form the worse aftertaste imaginable. Where is the tartness that everyone else seems to pick up? Medium bodied, ample carbonation, and a someone oily and sticky mouth feel. I tried to like this beer, and it sounds like something I'd love, but it's just a rambling attempt at a Bretted brown and actually pretty difficult to finish.

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Photo of clarkm04
2.78/5  rDev -28.4%
look: 4 | smell: 3.5 | taste: 2 | feel: 3 | overall: 3

I really wanted to like this beer but just did not. I love almost everything in Odell's line and love experimental beers and am into sours and bretts but this beer just did not cut it in my humble opinion.

Appearance- A nice dark brown color

Smell- Lots of interesting aromas but lighter than I expected. Interesting chocolate notes and some slight sour notes coming through.

Taste - Really flat in my opinion. Not super sour or brown. I just felt it was inoffensive and slightly messy. No notes really stuck out. I was pretty disappointed given how outstanding Odell's specialty beers typically are. The beer seemed at odds with itself.

Mouthfeel- Average mouthfeel not heavy or light.

Drinkability- The beer is drinkable but just not remarkable.

Overall - Fairly disappointing. I plan to buy another bottle and might revisit this review but at this juncture, I would not recommend this beer as there are more interesting and impressive sours/bretts/wilds on the market that are the same price or cheaper.

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Photo of Mebuzzard
2.82/5  rDev -27.3%
look: 3 | smell: 3.5 | taste: 2.5 | feel: 3 | overall: 2.5

Found this at the Rackhouse, and I've had a sample of it before from the bottle. First time seeing it on tap.
Pours a glossy dark brown with no head whatsoever. Swirl did nothing to it. Reddish highlights.
Sour cherries aroma. Not sure if this is a sour beer or not. The malt comes through, barely. Mostly this is sourness and a bit of dark fruit.
Taste doesn't have the sourness, save for the finish. All in all, it's a bit boring flavor-wise. Some flat malt here, dark fruit there. If it weren't for the sour finish and pucker, it would be dull.
Not a fan of this one. Glad I didn't pay for it.

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Photo of AgentZero
2.86/5  rDev -26.3%
look: 4 | smell: 3 | taste: 2.5 | feel: 3 | overall: 3

Picked it up on our trip up to Darkness Day and popped it open out our All Hollow's Eve tasting with the usual Chi-BA suspects.

A - A brown beer with a tan head. Moderate lacing.

S - Some oak, a lot of brett, the brown characteristics are somewhat missing.

T - I was dissappointed by this beer, as I thought it sounded like something that could be pretty good. Tasted like a boring brown with some brett added. Did not capture the interesting characteristics of each, instead was kind of bland tasting, a little sweet and somewhat milky, got worse as I continued drinking it.

M - Medium carbonation and body.

D - Not hard to drink, but I ended up dumping about 1/3 of my glass after I got bored with trying to like it. I'd pass on this one.

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Photo of Hojaminbag
2.88/5  rDev -25.8%
look: 2 | smell: 4 | taste: 3 | feel: 1 | overall: 2.5

I'm not sure how many beers I have gotten to try because of mikesgroove, but this is yet another one. Thanks Mike. 2010 bottling.

Saboteur has a dark brown body. The head worries me, because there isn't any at all; looks like a carbonation problem (it is).

The aroma has a pleasant mix of fruit, tartness and dark malts. Lemon and pineapple meet caramel and toffee.

Saboteur seems to have some potential, but the fact that it is completely flat is ruinous. As it is, there is a good bit of wild yeast (the bottle says brett) up front. The brett is surprisingly fruity and tart, featuring flavors of lemon and pineapple. Brett doesn't always produce characteristics like that, but I have run across it before and always found it to be quite pleasant. The malt profile is dark and rich, with powdered cocoa, toffee, molasses and caramel. Warming finish.

The mouthfeel is dead flat and heavy. In a word, Bad.

Saboteur was interesting enough to me that I would probably try another bottle. This bottle, however, was hard to drink due to the carbonation issues. This is a beer that seems to be fairly complex and should benefit from opening up with some carbonation. Basically, the flavors seem to be a good match, but they just don't come together when flat.

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Photo of urwithdave
2.89/5  rDev -25.5%
look: 4.5 | smell: 3 | taste: 2.5 | feel: 3 | overall: 3

Poured into my CCB snifter.

A- the best part of this beer. Pours dark brown in color with ruby highlights. 3 fingers of head with pretty solid retention. Nice lacing left on my glass.

A- sweet malts and some funk. Not a lot of funk. Mostly a sweet molasses. Nothing much else going on.

T- caramel, chocolate and vanilla. Maybe some toffee notes. The funk is subtle. I can appreciate where they were going here, but it's honestly a mess imo.

M- very thin. A sweet finish with little brett influence. Carbonation is good.

D- I am going to finish this bottle off. I will not revisit it though.

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Photo of oakbluff
2.9/5  rDev -25.3%
look: 3 | smell: 3 | taste: 3 | feel: 3 | overall: 2.5

Sampled on draft- muddled brown colour with minimal head and lacing. Nose- musty, nutty. Taste- brett flavour profile is strong, but doesn't mix well with the boozy hotness of the underlying beer. The alcohol heat was overpowering any malt subtleties. Some figs, nuts and caramel. A messy beer.

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Photo of crusian
2.95/5  rDev -24%
look: 4 | smell: 4 | taste: 2.5 | feel: 2.5 | overall: 2.5

bottle from my awesome girlfriend from some place in kansas.
Cork is a pain in the ass to pull out. I hate Pulling out the cork... I prefer to get help from the carbonation, usually it means that it is pretty flat, and initiates my disappointment... but I got a nice pop out of it, which was a huge relief.
pours a nice dark thick brown with about 3 fingers of head, not too much, not too little. I am not sure I agree with the style of american wild, as the bottle says brett barrel brown. ale... and specifically says brown ale in the description, nothing about a wild. brett does not instantly make a wild.
The head refuses to die. two fingers persist after about 5 minutes.
On the nose is actually a tinge of sour, but not too much, and actually smells like it wont taste sour. Vanilla and sweet come through on the nose as well, coming from the barrel aging.
The taste is as I expected, there doesnt seem to be much sour at all on it, but pinapple does come through, along with the vanilla and oak flavors.
drinkability is not too high, this may age well, and become more complex, but at this stage, not so much, falls a bit flat for me.

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Photo of drabmuh
3.07/5  rDev -20.9%
look: 4.5 | smell: 2.5 | taste: 3 | feel: 3 | overall: 3.5

Sorry Odell's, this beer was quite disappointing. Bottle shared at a recent tasting. Beer is brown and a little hazy. Beer forms a decent head that falls away quickly leaving some lacing on the glass. Carbonation is moderate. Looks pretty good.

Aroma is nearly absent, I keep trying to get something out of it but all I get is a mild brett character in there. Maybe some odd woody funk.

Beer is really thin and mild in flavor. There is an odd brett back flavor to this beer that seems abandoned by the rest of the palate. There is a growing mild funk in the mouth too, this is helped slightly by the dryness of the beer. Honestly not my favorite at all and I'm not interested in this beer. I won't have it again.

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Photo of angrybabboon
3.08/5  rDev -20.6%
look: 3 | smell: 3 | taste: 3 | feel: 3.25 | overall: 3.25

Cheers to Goblinmunkey7 for sharing this beer. A one-time release? Sure, why not?

Consumed 1/19/13

Appearance: Pours brown, with some red around the edges - some clarity - small, off-white head, fades to absolutely nothing - no head, no cap, no lacing, sad times

Smell: Musty, damp, sour, and tart - a damp, musty cellar - some intentional Brett - funky and woody - some brown malts - genuinely smells like something pulled out of a wet barrel from a damp, moldy basement

Taste: Sour, tart, damp, and wet - the sourness is interesting, but it's a bit much, like an accidental brett infection - some brown malts - a ton of wood and barrel, with way too much alcohol - sour, but not particularly interesting - some sweetness

Mouthfeel: Full body, minimal carbonation, smooth, but almost syrupy

Overall: Listen all y'all, it's a sabotage

Odell makes some fantastic beers. Honestly, I'm both surprised and disappointed that this isn't one of them. Yes, it's sour and tart, but it's also a boozy mess. Interesting, but not great.

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Photo of ShanePB
3.1/5  rDev -20.1%
look: 3 | smell: 3 | taste: 3 | feel: 4 | overall: 3

750 ml corked & caged bottle
Served into a tulip glass

A: Dark brown body with a huge sudsy, foamy off-white head. The bottle conditioning evidence is obvious. Dissipation was slow leaving a thick head around for a while, along with patchy lacing on the walls. A bit overdone and annoying, but it is what it is.

S: Very bland and basic. Earthy malts from the Brown Ale base come through with very little toasting, some caramel, hints of faint bitter chocolate and a big funky brett overlay. Nothing tart or sour, just big funk.

T: Funky earthy-like brett qualities, caramel malts, young oak wood, and touches of toasted grains. There's really not too much going on here in terms of diversity. Yeah, it's a Brown Ale but the brett did nothing to really make this beer better. Having said that, I never had the base beer alone but in my opinion I just don't quite understand what they were trying to accomplish with the addition of the brett.

M: Highly carbonated, bubbly and a bit fizzy on the palate. Some dryness from the brett and barrel in the finish.

This was just okay. There wasn't anything that stood out in this beer. It tasted like a mediocre Brown Ale thrown a barrel with brett (which it was), but nothing more. Good to try? Sure. Nothing worth seeking out though.

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Photo of Huhzubendah
3.2/5  rDev -17.5%
look: 3.5 | smell: 3.5 | taste: 3 | feel: 3.5 | overall: 3

Shared by Darrell. Thanks man.

The cork shot into the ceiling upon opening. Huge tan head that coats the glass with sticky lacing. The beer is fairly hazy and appears a chestnut brown color.

The aroma brings roast, barrels, chocolate, wine, fruit, alcohol. Quite complex, but not as inviting as some of the upper tier beers in this genre.

Nutty flavor, with a vinous character. Red wine comes through quite a bit. Additional notes of fruit, chocolate. Ok. Not particularly tart or sour. A light fruity sweetness throughout.

Medium bodied and rich. Moderate carbonation.

Overall, this was ok. One small glass is plenty.

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Photo of maximum12
3.23/5  rDev -16.8%
look: 3.5 | smell: 3 | taste: 3.5 | feel: 3 | overall: 3

Found a bottle hanging around long after the Saboteur exited this part of the country & thought, what the heck. Split into two snifters while watching Game 7 of the 2011 World Series, making up in drama what it's lacked in crisp play.

Pour is quiet & still as a cup of coffee: cork barely popped, & the there's little if any carbonation. Dark brownish-red as it glares back at me. Smell isn't much to sneeze at, little buggy, little malty, oak.

Saboteur doesn't make much of an impression. Nice tart whip up front, taste of toasty malting, earthy oak...but not a lot of anything, just a sliver here & a slip there. Once it warms a bit, the finish goes from vanish to varnish, bullet of alcohol delivered on the cherry of the brett. Actually, this improves markedly as it warms up. Could use a few bubbles, too thick & heavy on the palate. Half a 750ML bottle of this brute is plenty.

Not wild about this (ha!) one. Pretty good beer, nice attempt at getting off the portage trails & into the wild (ha!), but a little off-center of my sweet spot.

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Photo of Alieniloquium
3.28/5  rDev -15.5%
look: 3.5 | smell: 3.5 | taste: 3.25 | feel: 3.25 | overall: 3

750 mL bottle poured into a snifter.

Appearance - Big khaki head atop a brown body. Great retention.

Smell - A little bretty. Deep caramel notes. Some chocolate.

Taste - Bretty and earthy. Lots of deep caramel and chocolate. Dry.

Mouthfeel - A little heavy. Well carbonated.

Overall - A clash of flavors. Meh.

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Photo of oline73
3.28/5  rDev -15.5%
look: 3.5 | smell: 3 | taste: 3.5 | feel: 2.5 | overall: 3.5

Poured from the bottle into a tasting snifter. We opened this at the August Baltimore BA get together.

Appearance: Pours a slightly cloudy mahogany color with a finger of off white head. The bubbles are rather large and the head fades to a ring around the pour.

Smell: Getting the brett up front with some dark fruit and carmel malt showing up as well.

Taste: Brett tartness showing throughout. Malty underneath with a mild caramel sweetness. The finish is rather tart. This is a very different beer.

Mouthfeel: Medium body with tons of carbonation, way too much in fact. The finish is dry.

Overall: This was a really weird beer for me. The malt with the tartness never quite blended. Could have been a bit less carbonated.

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Photo of ktrillionaire
3.28/5  rDev -15.5%
look: 4 | smell: 3.5 | taste: 3 | feel: 3 | overall: 3.5

Big thanks to beersack for the share.

A - Looks like a good Porter. It is brown, verging on black, and is capped with a decent amount of mocha-hued froth, leaving small articles of lace.

S - The aroma is tart and chalky, with an impression of overripe fruit that perhaps is most akin to tamarind. There is a roasty and slightly smoky element and something of a copper-metallic odor as well. Unusual. The brown-ness of the beer is still quite obvious.

T - Tastes/smells like a mediocre blend of LaFolie and SFTOW. The flavor is equal parts tart Wild Ale and roasty Porter. There are some notes of red wine, cocoa-carob, a hint of tart cherry and a lot of caramelized unattenuated sugars. The beer is fairly tart, so the sweetness is tempered, but it is still there. I get the copper-metallic thing again, and some chalky oat flavors too. Overall, I am not thrilled with this, but it may age well though I am no expert on such matters.)

M - It is creamy and fairly well-carbonated, but still I am not thrilled.

D - Ehhh. It is okay, an interesting tart-sour-wild type of brew. Probably best for curiosity or introduction to this type of flavor profile (tart-sour-wild...)

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Photo of AndyAvalanche
3.28/5  rDev -15.5%
look: 3.5 | smell: 3.5 | taste: 3 | feel: 3.25 | overall: 3.5

My review doesn't reflect my appreciation for getting the bottle. Thank you Geoff for sending it. 750 ML bottle split with a friend poured into a tulip style glass. Comes out very dark brown, close to black. Deep mahogany highlights. Crazy big foaming white head, a lot o carbonation with a pour that wasn't even that hard.

Smell is decent, sort of tart and sour aromas as the strong point. Some candied sugar, maybe some dried figs and charred caramel. A bit of that Belgian yeast to it.

Taste is a step down from the smell. More like a Belgian brown style beer but "Imperial" because you can tell it's bigger with more alcohol. Some sweetness to with and some natural bitterness. Doesn't really taste sour; more like it's just past it's prime or an infected beer that wasn't intended to be that way.

Mouthfeel is alright, but odd. I don't think this beer knows what it's supposed to be, it has a lot going on. Not very smooth, a bit gritty. Sort of has a fermented fruit feel to it. Somewhat drinkable but overall I gotta just list this beer as "okay." Never could've finished the bottle by myself.

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Photo of Goblinmunkey7
3.31/5  rDev -14.7%
look: 3.5 | smell: 3 | taste: 3.5 | feel: 3.25 | overall: 3.25

Thanks to buffs9 for the bottle. Split with angrybabboon.

Appearance: Deep, dark brown. Some dark red highlights. Minimal carbonation. No lasting cap or collar. What head does appear on is off-white and bubbly.

Smell: Earthy with a slid hit of oak. Powdery Brett runs throughout. Slight lactic tartness. Some citrus. Worn leather. Distinctly nutty. Some wood. Slight roasted element. Some lighter herbal notes. Touch of acetic tartness. Vinegar and wood. Mushrooms.

Taste: Nutty. Incredibly nutty. Some caramel malt sweetness coupled with some light cocoa elements. Underlying powdery yeast. Mild funkiness. Grass and hay in the back. Earthy. Straight up mushrooms. Some leathery elements. Truffles. Roasted edges. Cooked. Something like brown rice.

Mouthfeel: Medium body with almost no carbonation. Lingering nuttiness.

Overall: It's time for a paradigm shift.

You want to know what nutty is? Drink this. Nutty and faintly funky. Mushrooms, rice, and nuts. Good, but odd. Bonus points for being unlike anything else.

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Photo of inlimbo77
3.4/5  rDev -12.4%
look: 3.75 | smell: 3 | taste: 3.5 | feel: 3.5 | overall: 3.5

750ml, 2012 vintage (I think?)
Mini pint glass

A: Pours a murky brown color. Tons of carbonation. Over carbed and/or that Brett has really takin' over this one. Light tan head. Lots of lacing.

S: Smells a little oxidized actually. Some of that Brett character. Some nutty notes. Some slight roast character. Nothing too memorable.

T: Taste follows the nose. It's OK, but seems to be lacking and seems like the age might have got to this one. Some tartness initially from the Brett. Then you get that base brown ale character. Finish is slightly dry.

M: Medium bodied.

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Photo of mothman
3.42/5  rDev -11.9%
look: 3.5 | smell: 4 | taste: 3 | feel: 3.5 | overall: 3.5

Thanks to kbutler1 for cracking this one.

Poured into Duvel glass.

Pours 1/4 finger of light tan colored head. Color is a dark murky brown.

Aroma: Sour notes, cherries, oak, light brett, light vinegar notes. Needs a bit of time imo.

Taste: Has a smoked/roasted malt taste with the sourness right behind it. Cherries, but not very tart. Has oak and funk. More brett showing. Also some vanilla.

Mouthfeel: Funky, crisp, and dry. Medium bodied with a medium to high carbonation. Ends dry with some light funk to it.

Overall, this beer is odd. Smells pretty good. Taste is not as good. Not very tart, but I think it might get pretty sour with time. The malt doesn't go well with the beer. Maybe time will help it.

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Photo of jrallen34
3.42/5  rDev -11.9%
look: 3.5 | smell: 4 | taste: 3 | feel: 3.5 | overall: 3.5

750ml bottle provided by Mike at our tasting last night...A medium brown pour that looks watery. Lots of carbonation showing off a light tan head with good retention but so-so lacing...A boring one toned aroma of brett on oak, no characters showing this is a brown ale...The taste flips the script as a lot of the brown notes come through especially on the finish showing off lots of drinkable coffee light bitterness. The coffee is accented by the brett. Actually a few tastes going on, but somehow I'm bored.

The beer is described as a brown with brett and that's what this is. A classic example of what this would be if you imagined it but its either just a bad combination or poor execution as I'm left uninspired.

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Saboteur from Odell Brewing Company
3.88 out of 5 based on 293 ratings.
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