Sui Generis | Avery Brewing Company

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Sui GenerisSui Generis
109 Ratings
Sui GenerisSui Generis

Brewed by:
Avery Brewing Company
Colorado, United States

Style: American Wild Ale

Alcohol by volume (ABV): 10.20%

Availability: Limited (brewed once)

Notes / Commercial Description:
No notes at this time.

Added by Oxymoron on 09-10-2009

This beer is retired; no longer brewed.

Bros Score:
User Ratings & Reviews
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Ratings: 109 |  Reviews: 60
Reviews by joshuaseresse:
Photo of joshuaseresse
4.75/5  rDev +10.5%
look: 4.5 | smell: 4.5 | taste: 5 | feel: 5 | overall: 4.5

Bottle received in a trade from gn0sis, thanks Eric! Shared at our recent La Crosse sour tasting and split with friends:

A - Rich gold and amber. Creamy foam head. Great lacing and head retention.

S - Peaches, apricots and lemon. Nice mized wine flavors and funk. Just the slightest hint of bourbon.

T - Grapes, apples, cherries and strawberries. Great wine flavors. Oak and a bit of vanilla. Lemon and lime, sherry, port and just a feel of bourbon. Wonderful!

M - Creamy and sharp. Crisp and very well balanced. The carbonation is really well done here.

O - One of my favorite sours to date. This one is great in all aspects and just amazing how many flavors there are. I'd like a case of this. Worth trying a seeking out.

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More User Reviews:
Photo of Mora2000
4.32/5  rDev +0.5%
look: 4 | smell: 4.5 | taste: 4.5 | feel: 4 | overall: 4

Thanks to bman1113vr for sharing this bottle.

Pours a murky orangish-brown color with a white head. The aroma is tart lemons. The flavor is tart lemons with some oak-aged character. The beer finishes very dry. Medium mouthfeel and medium carbonation.

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Photo of olradetbalder
4.5/5  rDev +4.7%

Photo of ehammond1
4.42/5  rDev +2.8%
look: 4 | smell: 4.5 | taste: 4.5 | feel: 4 | overall: 4.5

Bottle (2009)

Adam Avery's First Barrel-Aged Dinner
Stone Brew Co.
Escondido, CA

(Aged for 2.5 years)

Cloudy dark amber with a moderately sized khaki colored head. Nice retention and appropriate stick. Very pretty.

Complex, evolving aroma, especially as the beer warms. At initial temperatures, the yeast and lactic sour character is most present, but as it warms interesting notes of cherry, plum, and apple combine. Good oak presence as well, but I wouldn't name a particular spirit.

The flavor is a nice combination of funky yeast, fruit character, oak, and a moderate to high level of sourness. Complete, very drinkable, and the alcohol is remarkably well hidden.

Medium bodied with moderate-high carbonation; dry finish.


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Photo of glid02
4.42/5  rDev +2.8%
look: 4 | smell: 4.5 | taste: 4.5 | feel: 4 | overall: 4.5

Bottle at the Brick Store.

Pours a hazy amber color with a one-finger slightly off-white head. The head recedes into a wispy layer on top leaving decent lacing.

Smells of good amounts of funk with solid amounts of pear and white oak. The chardonnay barrel aromas are most prevalent while the cab barrels provide a bit of depth. I don't get much of the bourbon or port influence.

Tastes similar to how it smells. Robust funky flavors are backed by slight pale malt and slighter wheat twang to kick things off. Joining in shortly thereafter is a good amount of oak influence - chard and cab as with the aroma - that dries out the flavor profile a good deal. Very slight amounts of deep and sweet dessert wine make a brief appearance before giving way to slightly tart fruit and funk to carry through to a crisp ending.

Mouthfeel is good. It's got a nice thickness with active carbonation.

Drinkability is very good. I finished my glass quickly and could easily have a few more.

Overall this was the most balanced of the Avery barrel-aged series that I've had (Black Tot is the lone escapee). Very much worth a shot if you see it around.

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Photo of acurtis
3.53/5  rDev -17.9%
look: 3 | smell: 3.75 | taste: 3.5 | feel: 3.5 | overall: 3.5

Photo of GilGarp
4.67/5  rDev +8.6%
look: 4 | smell: 4.5 | taste: 5 | feel: 4.5 | overall: 4.5

Quite a special beer when you realize the time and thought that went into it. The second of Avery's barrel aged series, it is a blend of beers aged in cabernet, chardonnay, port, and bourbon barrels. They also used brettanomyces, lactobacillus, and pediococcus yeasts.

Bottled Sept. 18, 2009.

Served in a tulip glass, it pours a hazy redish copper color with a thin cap of head that settles quickly to just a skim layer.

Aroma is full of sour cherries and apples, tart berries, and funky yeasts. Very complex and enjoyable.

Flavor is equallly impressive with intensity and depth rarely seen outside of Russian River's wild ales. Also amazing considering how recently it was bottled although there is no indication of how long it has aged.

Tart and sour fruits combine with the unique combination of barrels to create a surprisingly unified beer. The cab and chard wines are evident and to lesser extent the port and bourbon. I don't think I would have picked them all out without a hint from the label but such is the power of suggestion. Sweet, sour, tart, bitter... are there any taste buds that haven't been touched on the tongue?

Mouthfeel is medium bodied and well-carbonated. Drinkability is good but I doubt I could handle more than one bottle in a sitting.

The only other beer I've had that even compares is Consecration. Both deliver amazing hits of flavor intensity and complexity. It's hard to say which I prefer without doing a side-by-side but I consider myself lucky to have tried them both alone.

Overall a great success and further proof of how talented the people at that brewery really are.

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Photo of Sammy
4.22/5  rDev -1.9%
look: 4 | smell: 4.5 | taste: 4 | feel: 4 | overall: 4.5

Bottle from JMBSH. A great sour ale, not too sour but certainly giving my palate a workout. Bottled September 2009. Body is cloudy grapefruit, topped by enormous level of white bubbly foam. Nose of funk but mainly also rich vinous aromas, and certainly more of the latter after airing out for a while. Mouthfeel is yes sour but also near creamy. Lemon, vinegar, and brettish flavours. To be sipped and enjoyed.

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Photo of SpeedwayJim
4.53/5  rDev +5.3%
look: 4 | smell: 3.5 | taste: 5 | feel: 4.5 | overall: 5

Thanks to Jeff (ipa247) for this one. Poured from a 12oz. bottle dated 9/18/09 into a tulip and shared with schen9303.

A: Pours a dense, 4 finger pinkish-cream head that never seemed to dissipate. Beer is a cloudy, tinted reddish-clay. Lacing is patchy and thick with great legs.

S: Nose is oaky, subtley sweet cherry, slightly vinegary, wood, and vanilla in the back. Not the most aromatic but pleasant with a characteristically wild smell.

T: Cherry, raspberry, cranberry dry and tartness. Great balance between the sour and fruitiness. Sweet vinegar and oaky vanilla develops as the brew warms. Dry, acrid finish with a slightly bitter, yeasty aftertaste that lingers.

M: Light to medium bodied, highly carbonated, dry, and very smooth. Lively tart with a dry and a bit powdery finish. Aftertaste is filmy and oily.

D: I, for the most part, haven't been a big fan of the Avery Bal-aged series. That being said, this beer absolutely blows my mind!! A near perfect mouthfeel with great complexity and balance in the flavor. Absolutely delightful and I'm sure to search this one out again!!

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Photo of dirtylou
4.57/5  rDev +6.3%
look: 4 | smell: 4.5 | taste: 5 | feel: 4.5 | overall: 4

12oz bottle, ss-09, had no idea this was so highly regarded

39% aged in cabernet sauvignon barrels, 35% aged in chardonnay barrels, 13% aged in port barrels, 13% aged in bourbon barrels

bottled 9-18-09

appearance: gold foil bottle, poured into large delirium chalice, murky body, muddy orane, bubbly beige foam

smell: tart, gold apple, oak, chardonnay, funky brett, peach, mango, sugar

taste: pretty incredible beer - the barrel aging provides some pretty intense complexity. initially i felt more chardonnay than cabernet, but then came the waves of cabernet grape - superb. very oaky, tart/sour, sour golden apple, sour cherry. each sip is an adventure

mouthfeel: commanding, tongue turning, could forget this one was 10.2% if you weren't careful

drinkability: good

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Photo of Photekut
4.5/5  rDev +4.7%

Photo of mikey711
4.32/5  rDev +0.5%
look: 4 | smell: 4.5 | taste: 4.5 | feel: 4 | overall: 4

Review #200, so I thought I would do something a little special, even though I almost lost my eye opening the bottle. Received from Rye726

A: Its a murky brown, almost like apple cider that pours about a quarter inch of off white head that is fluffy, almost like krausen, but does not hold. A fine layer of foam does remain on top and leaves nice lacing on the sides of the glass.

S: There are alot of smells going on and I am bound to miss some. Its a great blend of sweetness and sour. The sweet is fruity with grapes raspberries blueberrys and peaches. The sour is slightly bretty with a hint of funky earthiness. Also, there is a very nice tannic wood note and the cab sav barrel its very prominant, while the chardonnay gives off a dryness

T: What is most impressive out this beer is how present the various barrels can be tasted. THe tannins from the Cab sav,, the dry oakiness from the chardonnay, the sweetness from the port and the heat from the bourbon. They are all separate flavors that blend nicely. There is a heavy grape presence in the beer and lots of funk going on. The complexity of this beer and fantastic

M: It is very dry, and there is just the slightest bit of heat, but the alcohol is beneficial. Each sip is a little bit different likely do to the various barrels.

D: Well it is a sour and I would not like to have more than the 12oz I am enjoying for the night. I found I enjoyed this a bit more on the cold side as the sourness was very intense as the beer warmed. This is definitely something I would like to try again in the future and I wonder what some age would do to this treat

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Photo of kkrez
5/5  rDev +16.3%

Photo of nickd717
4.15/5  rDev -3.5%
look: 4.5 | smell: 4.5 | taste: 4 | feel: 4 | overall: 4

12oz bottle at Beachwood BBQ in Seal Beach, shared with HopHead84, alfrantzell, and Nick3...and my girlfriend (Beek on BA) took a sip or two.

Pours a hazy amber color with a small white head leaving some foam on top, with good lacing.

Aroma is funk, malt, red wine, wood, bourbon, and sour apple.

Flavor is great and complex with funk, leather, bleu cheese, red wine, oak, bretty and lactic tartness.

Medium bodied with average acidity for a sour.

Drinkability is high. Overall very good and interesting.

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Photo of russpowell
4.38/5  rDev +1.9%
look: 4.5 | smell: 4 | taste: 4.5 | feel: 4.5 | overall: 4.5

Got this one from Schmittymack, cheers Dan!

Pours an effervescent orange/caramel with 3 fingers of rocky tan head. Great head retention & tons of ivory flecked lacing dot the the glass

S: Barnyard funk & plenty of horse blanket, sour apples; fades a bit once warm, not too much

T: Tart & twangy with apples, raspberry vinaigrette & sour cherries up front. Oaky dryness, sourness & tartness dominate as this warms, along with leather & raspberries, a little booze lingers around the edge, actually benefits the flavor profile. I also pick up some figgy & Bing cherry sweetness right on the edges, sneaking by the sourness every once in a while, plus big-time port notes. Finishes puckery dry & tart with with some nice cherry sweetness balancing it out & a whisper of booze

MF: Medium bodied with slight carbonation & so puckery

Drinks very easy for the style & ABV. I appreciate the smaller size too, 750 ml of sour sometime overwhelms me, are you listening Russian River??? Almost on a par with RR IMO, well done Avery!

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Photo of heliosphann
4.28/5  rDev -0.5%
look: 4.5 | smell: 4 | taste: 4.5 | feel: 4.5 | overall: 4

12oz bottle provided by fellow BA infestaxion. Served in a tulip.

A: Head is minimal at best, leaving a very thin ring around the edge of my tulip. Pours a nice caramel color. Looks very much like an IPA. Some dainty lacing dissipates quickly.

S: Vinous overtones battle a good amount of wood. Apple, pear and apricots also in the mix. There's some funk present as well, but not too strong. I'm also getting a slight amount of alcohol.

T: Muted white and red grapes with some lighter fruits like apricot and kumquat. The blend of the different barrels definitely provides some funky wood tannins, with some noticeable clashing in a good way. Sweet notes with hints of vanilla, but not too sweet. The sourness kicks in on the finish, which is quite dry. There's slight amount of heat, but it doesn't really detract from the beer overall. Pretty complex and very tasty.

M: Medium bodied, if not a little thicker. Carbonation is very low, but it works fine with the style.

D: The 6oz I had went pretty quick. A full bottle is easily consumable, with the 10% ABV being one of the only drawbacks.

Avery really stepped up after the somewhat disappointing Brabant. Sui Generis is an oustanding American Wild Ale and a very unique one at that. I think this beer will age very well and I'm looking forward to trying one several years down the road.

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Photo of brian23456
5/5  rDev +16.3%

Photo of GRG1313
4/5  rDev -7%

Photo of WillyMac
5/5  rDev +16.3%

Photo of trappistlover
3.7/5  rDev -14%
look: 4 | smell: 4 | taste: 3.5 | feel: 4 | overall: 3.5

(12oz bottle generously shared by Mike!). Bottled on September 18, 2009. Pours clear amber with off-white head. Aroma is boozy with some tart cherries and other pit fruit. Taste has a sweet malt backbone with some tartness, but not very much. Medium bodied with a slick finish. Compared to a couple other sours we had, this was a bid boozy although it was still pretty nice.

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Photo of sammo
4.25/5  rDev -1.2%

Photo of GarrisWH
4.15/5  rDev -3.5%
look: 4.5 | smell: 4.5 | taste: 4 | feel: 4 | overall: 4

A - Pours a clear, deep amber color with a big, frothy, light-beige head. Good retention and leaves some lacing behind.

S - Tart fruit (cherry and apple) aromas jump out first, backed by some of chardonnay. There is a bit of funk hiding in there as well.

T - Sour/tart fruitiness with a strong vinous character. Subtle brett funkiness. Oakiness. Dry finish. Alcohol is slightly noticeable, but is very nicely integrated.

M - Medium body with a soft carbonation that fits this one nicely.

D - Glad I finally cracked this one. Complex flavors that meld together well. I couldn't really detect the bourbon or port barrels' effects, as the oaky, wine flavors really stood in the forefront. Another well done brew from Avery

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4.45/5  rDev +3.5%
look: 4.5 | smell: 4.5 | taste: 4.5 | feel: 4 | overall: 4.5

Bottled Sept 18, 2009. Consumed March 12, 2010.

Clear robust copper with amber and orange highlights. Good ecru head with pretty organic lace.

Funk plus Sour plus Fruit. Sour dark fruit. grapes, currants, cherries. Sour Apple. Earthy wood and funky herbal spiciness.

Earthy wood, spicy herbal. Sour apples, currants, cherries, white grapes, red grapes. Peppery funk. Sweet vanilla caramel and clove. nice bitterness that cuts some of the sour. Complex as fuck. Can taste the flavors of the different blends (cab sav, chard, port, and bourbon barrels).

Drying, semi rich med body. high carbonation cuts some of the body though. some puckering.

A very interesting and complex blend. 3 yeasts and 4 different barrel types. Doesnt taste anywhere near 10.20% ABV.

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Photo of Phyl21ca
4/5  rDev -7%
look: 4 | smell: 4 | taste: 4 | feel: 4 | overall: 4

Bottle: Poured a lightly reddish cloudy color ale with a large foamy head with good retention. Aroma consists of vinous notes with some lightly sweet port notes and a clear tart finish. Taste is a complex mix between some vinous notes with a subtle sweet undertones and a well balanced tart finish. Body was quite full with good carbonation and no apparent alcohol. Very well brewed and assembled with a balanced mix between the different flavors.

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Photo of awareness
4.82/5  rDev +12.1%
look: 4.5 | smell: 5 | taste: 5 | feel: 4.5 | overall: 4.5

Sui Generis is, quite simply, a one-of-a-kind work of art.

The bottle proclaims it to be a "barrel-aged sour ale", number two in Avery's barrel-aged series, which does nothing to suggest the rich glory of balanced flavor. The sour quality pushes the leading edge of its flavor envelope, carrying a wave of complexity which suggests tart green apples and hints at the yeasts which created it. It'll make your mouth think about puckering yet doesn't quite take it that far. The pleasantly long finish entices you back for the next sip, trying to guess what else you taste. One would never guess it packs a punch of 10.2% alcohol by volume.

Sui Generis is tart and tangy, yet mellow. (Once you taste it, your tongue will reconcile the apparent contradiction.) Its medium body and tintillating fizz lets it go down smoothly while you enjoy the flavor. This beer is made to sip and to prolong the experience.

I feel uniquely privileged to enjoy this beer and am thankful for the selfless generosity of my friend Holly for sending me a bottle from Colorado, the heartland of craft beer. Let's hope enough folks try it and distribution catches up!

If you are new to sour ales, don't try this one first--its perfection may well ruin the genre for you.

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Sui Generis from Avery Brewing Company
Beer rating: 4.3 out of 5 with 109 ratings
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