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Collaboration Not Litigation Ale | Avery Brewing Company

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Collaboration Not Litigation AleCollaboration Not Litigation Ale

Brewed by:
Avery Brewing Company
Colorado, United States

Style: Belgian Strong Dark Ale

Alcohol by volume (ABV): 8.72%

Availability: Rotating

Notes / Commercial Description:
No notes at this time.

Added by FtownThrowDown on 01-23-2007

For Trade:
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Reviews: 734 | Ratings: 1,620
Photo of sulldaddy
4.32/5  rDev +10.2%
look: 3.5 | smell: 4 | taste: 5 | feel: 3.5 | overall: 4

Drinking a cellar temp bottle poured into a snifter. The beer is a clear mahogany with several yeast chunks floating throughout. A minimal edge layer of bleached white head is all that forms. Aroma is fairly fruity with berries and pears mixing with floral hops and some caramel. Average body with a sticky syrupy texture and very fine gentle carbonation. Flavor is very complex with sour cherry, red grapes and general fruitiness rolling to a lingering black pepper spiciness on the finish. No hops on the taste and I dont think the black pepper is from ABV but is a yeast by product. Quite a tasty beer, glad to have tried a bottle.

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Photo of Metalmonk
3.91/5  rDev -0.3%
look: 4.5 | smell: 3.5 | taste: 4 | feel: 4 | overall: 4

Thanks msubulldog25 for sending this--I know he and GuldenGurl would approve of decanting into a Gulden Draak glass, so here we go...

Bottled Jan. 2007. Poured a very large head made of super-tiny bubbles. Color is a gorgeous dark fudgy caramel brown. Lots of lace document each sip.

Aroma throws off more hops than expected, and also something candylike and sweet, pretty sugar-y. Malts are light and toasty. A Belgian yeast-type aroma wafts through the background.

From the first seconds of the first sip, it's obvious there's complexity here. Lots to chew through, lots to contemplate. Luckily it's not a mess. There's caramel, chocolate, subtle fruit sweetness, even a nuttiness that suggests peanut butter, with hops holding their own but behaving. I'm missing the intense dark fruits and prominent wild yeast aspects of authentically Belgian dark ales. They're here, but seem to be taking a back seat. That sticky peanut buttery sweetness sticks around longest, a really unusual and enjoyable element to this beer's character.

This is a cool concept and a one-of-a-kind beer, offering its own take on the style, not straying too far either. I haven't had Russian River's Salvation, and thought the Avery version was good but not mindblowing. Think the Czech and US Budweisers would make as interesting a mixture? Nah, didn't think so.

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Photo of oberon
3.65/5  rDev -6.9%
look: 3.5 | smell: 3.5 | taste: 3.5 | feel: 4 | overall: 4

Bottled in Jan 07,poured into a fish bowl glass murky tea-like color with chinks and floaties swirling about a thinner head than expected leaving only a tace amount of spotted lace as it settled rather quickly.Mild phenolic aromas hit upfront along with some sweeter bread dough and a hint of wood nothing jumps out all are a bit tame but noticable.Phenolic and spicey with an underlying woddy graininess the fruit is a bit subdued pretty dry on the palate in my mind.Although not a huge fan of the style I was craving it and this although pretty good didnt really give me my fix I was looking for.

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Photo of mjc410
3.93/5  rDev +0.3%
look: 3.5 | smell: 3 | taste: 4.5 | feel: 4 | overall: 4

Poured into a tulip glass at Pizzeria Paradiso in Georgetown, Washington, DC. The beer formed a light tan glass ring, with very little cling in its lacing. The body was a translucent honey-amber with red highlights. The nose was lightly fruity, yeasty, and malty, but not pungeant enough for my preferences. However, the true power of the beer was expressed far more so in the taste, which was rich with dark fruitiness, berries, cherries, a touch of an herbal character, some chocolate, and pepper. It hid the alcohol magnificently. The mouth was medium, with very tiny but many bubbles, which led to great carbonation. I would have liked the body to be a tad thicker, though. Overall, a well-balanced brew that I'd be happy to drink often.

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Photo of JohnnyDuvel
4.35/5  rDev +11%
look: 4 | smell: 4 | taste: 4.5 | feel: 4.5 | overall: 4.5

This beer is a treat. I really like Salvation, and this is quite similar. It's an interesting concept. Has a cloudy appearance, thick with floaties. Sweet and fruity, great drinkability. ABV not noticed in taste. Really defies category, as Avery Salvation is a golden ale. This is not as dark as other Belgian dark ales either. Also, not quite a dubbel. If you find it, give it a shot. Unique, high quality brew.

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Photo of guitarmage
4.32/5  rDev +10.2%
look: 4.5 | smell: 5 | taste: 4 | feel: 4.5 | overall: 4

Appearance: Very cloudy brick red, big off white billowy head, foamy and inviting.

Smell: Sweet malt and fruity esters are big, a tartness is present as well, phenolic, very nice, complexed and balanced aroma.

Taste: Ripe fruit on the tip of the tongue, a little phenolic in the nose, then the beer disappears really quickly, leaving not much of anything. A little bit of alcohol in the finish and a peppery hit of hops.

Mouthfeel: Medium bodied with a fairly intense rolling carbonation, making a really crisp beer, especially for the style.

Drinkability: Very unique ale, the aroma is intense, the flavor is quick. All in all, tasty, even pretty hoppy, less malty than other Belgian SDAs.

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Photo of RidiculedDisplay
3.17/5  rDev -19.1%
look: 3 | smell: 3.5 | taste: 3 | feel: 3.5 | overall: 3

Appearance: Pours with a quarter-finger wood grain colored head that quickly dissipates into, well, not a whole lot. Lacing is there, but intermittent and not too impressive. Body is a rather one-trick-pony shade of deep brown, which I've seen before in other BSDA's, but most have a bit more effervescence than this.

Smell: Corky woodiness with some doughy bread qualities. Apples, cinnamon, raisins, hints of peach, some plum, a little too toned down to some degree. The esters I would have liked to have been more assertive. Perhaps a few years on this would do it good in that sense. An alcohol-ey, stinging musk is in the back end that isn't particularly pleasant.

Taste: Apple, cinnamon, still that corky woodiness. The plum esters are more playful here and a bit more assertive. Some banana I didn't notice in the nose. There remains a bitter, alcohol-y sting to this brew, however, which is particularly unpleasant on the swallow. Almost like cough medicine on the tongue. Ech. Sorry, only the esters really save this one.

Mouthfeel: Adequately carbonated. Astringent upon swallowing.

Drinkability: The bitterness/cough medicine-like quality to this brew keeps it from being very enjoyable, or drinkable.

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Photo of Risser09
2.85/5  rDev -27.3%
look: 3.5 | smell: 3.5 | taste: 2.5 | feel: 3 | overall: 2.5

Sampled As Part Of Phatz's Sour Beer Tasting - Review Is From Notes

Appearance: Brown with a tinge of gold. Head is white and has moderate retention. Very little lace remains. There seems to be plenty of carbonation.

Smell: Initially it smells like old beer-well, it is sour after all. Earthy aromas include peat, wood and malt.

Taste: The taste is woody and full of malt. This reminds me of a high-end malt liquor. I can taste the brettamyces? bacteria. Not souring to me, but could be for others. I think the earthy flavors have a strangle hold on this one.

Mouthfeel: Bubbly and funky. Smoothe with sort of an annoying aftertaste. Again, feels like malt liquor.

Drinkability: This is a decent beer that I probably won't revisit unless it's the best thing available. For $10 a bottle, I could do much better.

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Photo of wedge
3.95/5  rDev +0.8%
look: 4 | smell: 4 | taste: 4 | feel: 3.5 | overall: 4

Pours like opaque maple syrup under a modest, soft head of loose foam. Little flakes of yeast are suspended in the brew. Aromas of fruity Belgian yeast; syrupy apple, pear, and mellow clove. Full flavored - spiced dry fruit esters. More pomaceous fruits and clove along with a honey-sweet black cherry and yeast. Medium bodied, dry and a little tart, finishing quite peppery and warm.

'Tis a tasty collaboration. (Review 400)

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Photo of tastybeer
4.32/5  rDev +10.2%
look: 4 | smell: 4.5 | taste: 4.5 | feel: 4 | overall: 4

Mmmm very nice. Looks good. Fluffy white, dense and fine bubbled head frosts my mahogany, ruby red beer pleasantly and leaves big sheets of tight lace around the glass. Smells smooth and deep. Fruity yeast and creamy bread malts covered in a variety of fruits. Apples, cantelope, pears, peaches, mellow spice, and flowers fill the nose. Taste is complimentary. This is certainly a well blended concoction. Body is a light creamy feeling medium somehow, with tingly effervescent carbonation. Smooth and soft texture and very easily drinkable. I didn't expect it but this is good in warm weather. Kind of spring-like in character. Well I'm glad I picked this one up before it was all gone.

A good choice and a delight to drink.

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Photo of ppoitras
4.18/5  rDev +6.6%
look: 4.5 | smell: 4 | taste: 4 | feel: 4.5 | overall: 4.5

22oz bottle purchased as a single from Julio's, Marlboro, MA. Jan07 bottling.

Poured into a heavy glass chalice, formed a 1/2" beige head over the cloudy reddish amber brew. Head holds strong, with heavy, non-falling lace. Aroma is yeasty spicy dark fruity. Taste starts with spicy maltiness, segues into a dark fruit presence, and closes with some earthy hoppiness and an encompassing warmth. Mouthfeel is creamy smooth, and drinkability is excellent for the style. A great collaborative process has yeilded a great beer.

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Photo of MuddyFeet
3.7/5  rDev -5.6%
look: 3.5 | smell: 3.5 | taste: 4 | feel: 3.5 | overall: 3.5

Enjoyed on-tap at Sunset Grill in Boston. Reviewed from notes.

Poured a muddy brown color. Very "clean" looking head that completely dissolved rather quickly Very flat in appearance. Nose was wheat malts and citrus.

Flavor was heavy on wholesomeness. Surprisingly wheaty. Yeast very pungent and seemed to coat the cheeks. A tad sour as well. Picked out some light fruits as well. Mouthfeel was a tad short of full and perhaps a bit syrupy. Served a bit too cold and I hate to let it warm up to really notice the flavors.

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Photo of kmo1030
4.03/5  rDev +2.8%
look: 4.5 | smell: 4 | taste: 4 | feel: 4 | overall: 4

dark brown with faint red orange highlights.
belgian yeast aroma, with grainy roasted malt, and a variety of fruits including pinapple, fig, raisin and faint banana. bubblegum and clove show up in varying amounts too.
malty flavor with the ever present belgian yeast qualities. the taste is a carbon copy of the nose, with all the fruits, bubblegum and cloves there. it's peppery and spicy at all points on the tongue, but the alcohol is masked very well for 9% abv.
medium bodied, with a delicate but active carbonation that is somewhat accentuated by the spicy quality of the flavor.
good drinkability especially when the abv is considered, though not a session beer by any stretch of the imagination. a real nice rendition of the belgian strong dark.

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Photo of peabody
3.75/5  rDev -4.3%
look: 4 | smell: 4 | taste: 4 | feel: 3.5 | overall: 3

This is a nice reddish amber ale with one finger of off-white suds and good lacing.
I smell raspberry and caramel and lemon peel and definatly some pine. Lots of pine here. Hops? damn, christmas morning tree pine.
A piney bitter taste followed by the sweet caramel and fruitiness.
Alcohol is present here but not overwhelming. Raisin and plum. Sugar galore with very little hop bitterness.
This is not a bad beer at all. I like the carbonation quality and the sugar/alcohol content as it is blended very well.
With a high %abv I wouldn't consider this a great session beer but it is still a very nice mixture of two great breweries/Russian River and Avery.

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Photo of nickfl
3.88/5  rDev -1%
look: 4 | smell: 3.5 | taste: 4 | feel: 4 | overall: 4

A - Pours with a thick, creamy head. Settles down to a film pretty quickly and leaves behind an unusually nice laceing on the glass. Hazy reddish brown, not as dark as I might have expected, kind of looks like a flemmish brown.

S - Malty, sugary aroma... a bit of hops. Just a lot of caramel dary candy smells, and some dates or prunes; frankly, I expected a more complex aroma from these guys but maby my nose is having an off day.

T - Sugary, yeasty, with an alcoholic finish complemented with a good bit of hoppy bite.

M - Great texture! Really feels like a Belgian dark beer in that it coats the mouth and goes down smooth.

D - I really expected something more over the top on this one. As it turned out I got a very drinkable beer that captures the Tao of the Belgian strong dark style in a quiet way.

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Photo of neonbrown82
4.2/5  rDev +7.1%
look: 4 | smell: 4 | taste: 4.5 | feel: 4 | overall: 4

Just finished drinking a glass each of Avery and Russian River Salvation. I then mixed the second half of each bottle (or second quarter, I suppose, since I'm doing this tasting with my roommate) to drink side by side with the Collaboration. I must say, it's mind boggling how much these beers change when they are blended. Where once there was an overwhelming bubblegum and banana flavor in both beers, there is now a pineapple aroma with a slight roast that carries over from the RR. I will go into more depth on the differences as I continue to review the Collaboration of its own accord.

The beer pours to a nice burnt caramel flavor with a light gold and amber hue. Doesn't look all that different from the RR, and the homemade blend (HB) is a dead ringer. The head is nice and fluffy (MASSIVE on the pour), just barely off white. Decent retention at about a centimeter. Spotty lacing.

The aroma is good. Pineapple with a feint hint of the banana and bubble gum esters present in both of the originals. A nice amount of roastiness carries over from the RR, but not so much of the hops from the Avery. In the HB, the hops from the Avery are a lot more pronounced, as is the roast and creaminess of the RR. I would have to give the edge to the HB in this aspect, but in all honesty I like the originals better than either blend.

The taste is the best part. Starts off with a light pineapple ester, along with some of the bubblegum and banana. A little bit of clove and a decent bitterness. Has a bit of a caramel malt finish and a slight hint of roast. Not nearly as creamy as the HB. Very good, but once again, I like the originals better.

The body is medium with a crisp carbonation and a decent bitterness. The finish is long lasting. Mild alcohol burn. I enjoyed it. Even though I still like the individual beers better on their own, I think it is great to see two great breweries collaborating like this. Whether it be as simple as blending their respective brews, or actually brewing a totally different beer, I think more brewers should be doing this.

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Photo of cbn
3.93/5  rDev +0.3%
look: 4 | smell: 3.5 | taste: 4 | feel: 4.5 | overall: 4

Cloudy amber-brown with reddish hue when held up to light. Massive off-white head dissipating slowly leaving some lace.

Aroma of Belgian yeast, mild flowery hops and a hint of alcohol.

Ample carbonation,and spicy flavors nip at the edges of the tongue. Smooth malt, slightly oily with a yeasty cereal finish.

Well done, good drinkabilty, alcohol is well hidden, flavors are bold and refreshing.

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Photo of Vancer
4.13/5  rDev +5.4%
look: 4.5 | smell: 4 | taste: 4 | feel: 4 | overall: 4.5

The Collab. was just another nice brew from Avery, I’m just luving what they are up too. Very solid pour – clear mahogany brown with this highly charged brew. Massive ice cream dollop of tan goodness that volancanoed up the glass.

Peppery malt with some smokey notes in this American brew. Great taste of caramel piled on top of sweet Belgium yeast and sugar cane. Very warm and tasty brew, included black pepper and sugar spice. Crisp and dry in the finish.

To me, NO alcohol presence, very subdued and subtle. Thanks to Colorado again.

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Photo of Gavage
3.55/5  rDev -9.4%
look: 3.5 | smell: 3.5 | taste: 3.5 | feel: 4 | overall: 3.5

Appearance: pours a cloudy amber color with some orange highlights. A one finger head falls apart quickly.Spots of lacing develop.

Smell: alcohol, prunes, and sweet fruits.

Taste: alcohol is quite upfront here. Prunes, raisins, caramel, and hints of chocolate and vanilla. Peppery towards the finish, and there is a nice bitterness level here. Very warming.

Mouthfeel: medium-heavy in body. Lightly crisp at the start, smoother towards the finish. Long alcohol and fruit laden aftertaste.

Drinkability: again the higher alcohol knocks this down a notch. This will improve with a bit of age.

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Photo of NJpadreFan
3.03/5  rDev -22.7%
look: 3.5 | smell: 3 | taste: 3 | feel: 3 | overall: 3

Avery- Collaboration Not Litigation

Appearance- Hazy reddish brown with no head.
Smell- Sweet dried fruits like prune, raisin, and cherry. Alcohol noted as well.
Taste- Immediate alcohol but quickly being replaced by a strong candi sugar. Huge raisin, prune, and cherry flavors come out.
Mouthfeel- Syrupy sweet with an alcohol twang.

Overall- I drank 2 pints of this and it became too cloying. Not a bad tasting beer but very its very sweet and the alcohol is always present.

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Photo of NeroFiddled
4.5/5  rDev +14.8%
look: 4.5 | smell: 4.5 | taste: 4.5 | feel: 4.5 | overall: 4.5

Well here's a winner!

Not unlike my usual self, I poured this beer without knowing what it was. I noted the huge frothy head of yellowish foam and the slightly hazy (I was careful with the pour of the long-standing bottle) amber/copper body. As I raised it to my nose however, my eyes must have popped open wide! Brettanomyces!? How could it be? I had to look at the label. I thought it was a collaboration with Left Hand (even the cross-cut saw at the bottom of the label seems to indicate that...) but then I noticed the bottle of Russian River on the right hand side. I took a sip... heaven!!! And that's why my review starts with the first words that popped into my head... "Well here's a winner"!

After I started writing this I had to read the label, and learned - as you no doubt already know - that it's a blend of Salvation from both breweries. Vinnie's of course stands out, but the rich malt base of Avery's makes it something completely different. I thought of a comparison to the sweetened versions of Flemish Red, but that passed quickly as they're completely different - as is this beer! Another American original? Perhaps.

The nose is not nearly as full and rich as the flavor, and expresses more of the clean, tart and metallic character of the Brett. Some grainy, dusty malt does come through, and there's a light note of clove, some dark fruit, and a mild vinous side.

The flavor is malty, mineralish, sweet (soft light caramel, brown sugar, sugar candy), spicy (lots of clove, some coriander), sweaty, metallic, tangy, fruity (red grape, plum/prune, cherry, fig), hoppy, earthy, straw-like, lightly cheesy, and bitter. The alcohol never shows, and it finishes dry and gently lingering with a mineralish blanket of dull malt and some lingering bitterness and soft clove. It's so complex though without really showing it, and the flavors vary in their placement throughout the glass like a game of musical chairs... which, I guess, actually adds even more to its complexity.

Really unique, and really enjoyable!!! However, I should note that this is one of those beers that you either love or hate. If you're on board for Orval and clovey-phenolic Belgians, then you'll probably go ape-shit for this one. If not, avoid it like the plague (to use another cliche). For me, I'm going to stock up on as much as I can afford right now. A new personal favorite :)

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Photo of Gueuzedude
4.42/5  rDev +12.8%
look: 4 | smell: 4.5 | taste: 4.5 | feel: 5 | overall: 4

Sampled February 2007
Aromas of cloves, bananas, allspice and an intense fruitiness waft from my glass as I pour this brew. The beer is a dark, deep amber color that shows an almost brilliantly clear hue when held up to the light. The head is a frothy light tan color that starts out at three-fingers in height and even leaves a nice lace pattern on the sides of the glass. The aroma on this brew is quite beguiling; I think some of this has to do with the beer I had before this (DD SN Reserva 2005), but still it does have quite an interesting aroma. Notes of figs, prunes and raisins really jump out as part of the fruit aromatics. There is a touch of something like tart plums and tart, yet aromatic apples here in the aroma as well. As the beer warms, and my palate get used to it, the aroma picks up notes of earthy spice like coriander, cinnamon bark but with more woodiness, and even some light ginger notes.

The beer has quite a thick mouthfeel to it; it is chewy and sticks to the palate with a concentrated fruit-like character that reminds me of figs and prunes. A nice spiciness anchors the fruit notes and adds flavors of definite ginger, clove, allspice, celery seed. As I get used to the flavors, and as the beer warms up, the sweet fruity notes mellow a bit and the spicy notes serve more as a balance to the flavor profile. It is rich and satiating, yet is not at all syrupy, sticky or too much; the mouthfeel might be the best part of this beer.

This beer is quite a bit better than it was the other night when I had it (and it was certainly not shabby then). Not quite sure why, but my palate is just really digging this right now. I can't believe I like this better than the Batch 01 Salvation from Russian River. I so think the Avery version is lackluster, but this is just hitting the spot right now. As time passes the more this beer grows on me. Somehow this manages to be a spectacular beer, despite my initial "Avery" misgivings.

Purchased: Plaza Liquors, Tucson AZ

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Photo of Onibubba
4.2/5  rDev +7.1%
look: 4 | smell: 4 | taste: 4.5 | feel: 4 | overall: 4

Just tried batch Two, and I must say, I'm getting a very different taste. Not so much the tangy pinapple upsidedown cake taste I found so enjoyable from batch one. This is a more typical strong dark or dubble taste. Not bad but not as unique as before. I need to try to track down another batch one and do a side by side...Disturbing.

Brown pour with a nice beige head which is reinvigorated by a gentle swirll. Nice lacing. Aroma promises goodness within. Sour over-ripe fruits, a bready, spicey sweetness. Immediate taste profile: Pinapple Upside Down Cake. The pinapple, the cherries - more tart than sweet, brown sugar and a bready yeastiness are all there.

Mouthfeel is nice. Moderate carbonation, not enough sweetness to be an issue. Quite drinkable with ABV remaining where it shoud - In the background. A great beer. Already purchased another.

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Photo of Ivanthehero
4.22/5  rDev +7.7%
look: 4 | smell: 4.5 | taste: 4 | feel: 4 | overall: 4.5

I really dig most of Avery's big beers so I was happy to see this at Greene's the other day. I wish RR was sold out here, I guess this is the closest I'll get for a while.

Pours a dark reddish brown with huge head.

Smells sweet and spicy and fruity and awesome.

The same spiciness is echoed in the taste. Sweet maltyness up front, bitter , peppery spice in the back, fruity all the way through.

I don't think I've encountered a belgian strong ale that scored below a 4 in the mouthfeel department. This example is not as bubbly as some I've had, but that just aids the rate at which this wonderful concoction goes down to the belly.

Very Nice!

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Photo of Bighuge
4.03/5  rDev +2.8%
look: 4.5 | smell: 4 | taste: 4 | feel: 4 | overall: 4

Deep shade of mahogany. Slightly hazy. Thick crop of frothy white head. Lacing is quite full. Got a little sweet and sour aspect on the nose. A little sweet cherry mixes with a little sour "Brett" like character. This experiment tastes pretty good. Nice belgian maltiness. A little biscuity. Pretty warm overall. Some candy like sweetness comes into play as well. A little fruitiness. Like mangos. Carbonation is nicely subdued. Light to light-medium body. The alcohol is held in check nicely. Very enjoyable brew. Good experiment.

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Collaboration Not Litigation Ale from Avery Brewing Company
3.92 out of 5 based on 1,620 ratings.
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