Le Woof
Off Color Brewing

Le WoofLe Woof
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French Bière de Garde
Ranked #61
Ranked #21,649
3.84 | pDev: 10.16%
Off Color Brewing
Illinois, United States
Very Good
Le WoofLe Woof
Notes: Inspired by our brewery puppy, Hops, Biere de Guard Dog seems sweet enough will a strong malt presence lead by Munich and Vienna malts. But at 7.3% ABV, it packs a bite. Just ask our delivery guy!
Reviews: 36 | Ratings: 129 | Log in to view all ratings and sort
Photo of hman43
3.81/5  rDev -0.8%
look: 3.75 | smell: 4 | taste: 3.75 | feel: 3.75 | overall: 3.75

Look: It pours golden with a white head. Head retention is good.

Smell: It has sweet malt aromas of bread. It also has some spices in the nose the most prominent being pepper. There are also some earthy elements to it.

Taste: It has a combination of malty sweetness with a moderate amount of spices. The flavor tends towards toast. There are also some earthy and herbal elements in the flavors as well.

Feel: It has a moderate body with some alcohol warming. It has a dry finish.

Overall, it is malty sweet but highlight by moderate spiciness with pepper, earthy and herbal qualities.

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Photo of beertunes
3.5/5  rDev -8.9%
look: 3.5 | smell: 3.5 | taste: 3.5 | feel: 3.5 | overall: 3.5

12oz bottle poured into 12oz tulip.

Poured a cloudy dull orange color, with an inch of white head that had good retention and no lacing.

Nice yeasty spice aroma, with earthy grains in the background.

Very similar on the tongue, with the addition of a certain level of tartness on the back end.

Body was light-medium, with good carbonation across the palate, with a dry finish.

Drinkability was nice.

Overall, nice brew, worth trying if you see it.

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Photo of Jonoesh5
4.36/5  rDev +13.5%
look: 5 | smell: 4 | taste: 4.5 | feel: 4 | overall: 4.5

Picked up a 4-pack for $12 at my local Chicago grocer, bottled 08/30/17. This beer looks sexy. An opaque orange body sits beneath a 2 inch, frothy, beige head. The nose is faint, but I smell oranges, spices, and malts. First sip is fruity! Strawberries, pineapple, and bubblegum. Everything tastes juicy and sweet. As the beer warms, the toasty malt profile opens up, reminiscent of a lager. Mouthfeel is a pleasant medium body. As with other Biére de Gardes, the mouthfeel is more carbonated than other styles, which for me, distracts from the flavor profile. I wish the flavors lingered more. Overall, I'm into it! Off Color is killing it with their tart beers, but Le Woof is very approachable for someone experimenting in Sour territory. Haven't had an off-putting Off Color beer yet :)

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Photo of Bluecrow
3.98/5  rDev +3.6%
look: 4 | smell: 4 | taste: 4 | feel: 3.75 | overall: 4

- a very foamy orange-tap pour was tamed by the capable server. The snifter was pretty and the the honey malt-like aroma was accentuated. The flavors include a bit of caramel and woody herbs with apple, grape and a Saison yeast back. The finish is thin, but I liked this.

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Photo of StonedTrippin
3.54/5  rDev -7.8%
look: 3.75 | smell: 3.5 | taste: 3.5 | feel: 3.75 | overall: 3.5

i didnt dislike this, but its a weird one and far from the best these guys are capable of. its a style i really dig too, but something about it is just strange, and ill tell you what it is right now, the aftertaste taste like peanut butter to me, i have no idea why, this isnt an off flavor i am familiar with, and it does seem yeast derived not grain derived to me because of where it appears in the beer, but i have no idea where it could have come from or why its there, it cant be intentional right? im almost certain this has no peanut butter in it, but there it is, clear as day (to me) in the finish. i guess it could be an over developed biscuit thing, a weird product of vienna malt in a certain context, but i really dont get it. i dont even dislike what i taste, its just weird in this style. i do like the richer grain complexion and the beer being a little stronger than normal, it slows me down a little bit. its nicely hearty, but also real well carbonated, earthy and autumnal, more substantial than i am used to in the style, with almost no hops at all in the finish. this confused me more than it turned me off, not the best of their work in my opinion...

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Photo of Beginner2
4/5  rDev +4.2%
look: 3.75 | smell: 3.75 | taste: 4 | feel: 3.75 | overall: 4.5

In Off Color's mission of preserving beer styles that have fallen from favor, they do a great public service.
And the Biere d' garde seems to be disappearing from shelves over the last year. Is it because not enough people want to drink it ? Or too few brewers know how to brew it?

We may have to wait for this answer. But it is important because I think the biere d'garde is one of the more food-friendly styles and it deserves to be interpreted among American crafters.... particularly since brewers from this northern band of France seem to be losing their U.S. importers fast.

Judging Le Woof.... I bought a 4 pack from their on-plant shop. The first was good, but not great. So I want to drink the next one side-by-side with another American artisan keeping the flame for this style.

9/29/17 Had the 2nd side-by-side with Stillwater's Biere d'garde and, thus, starting My Great American Biere d'Garde Taste-Off. Before I tell you who won... Let me say that Off Color's claims Le Woof has a "Je nais se qua" which is French for "hard to describe" or less literally "if you have to describe it, you probably missed the point." Off Color is right, to some degree. But because this style is designed to be food-friendly, there needs to be more adaptability to the differences in food, particularly their spices. Hence the ale needs more variance and, hence, more difficulty in describing.
That said, Off Color won the contest because, I'm guessing, its yeast produces more complex aromas and flavors. And both are different... kinda like Off Color itself.

10/3/17 Had the 3rd bottle with a red pasta sauce. Both worked together. Le Woof has this lingering spice I can't describe. Maybe that is the "je nais se qua."

10/21/17 Had the last Le Woof side-by-side again with Stillwater's Biere d' Garde in the final game of the Great American Biere d'Garde Taste-Off. I've changed my mind slightly. Both are great and will be Had again. I hope.

1/5/19 Got another 4 pack in the October 2018 release and just finished the last one. Consistent in Taste to 2017 and also versatile in pairing throughout the 4 pack, this last one made my leftovers taste good and even a mild Indian dal. Now, that's versatile ! Off Color, please bring Le Woof back more often. Thanks. (My cooking needs all the help it can get.)

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Photo of SLeffler27
4.08/5  rDev +6.3%
look: 4.5 | smell: 4 | taste: 4 | feel: 4 | overall: 4.25

The 1" tall, off-white creamy froth eventually settles to 1/2" for the duration, while the (SRM 6-8) almost clear shinny copper amber beer generates columns of fine carbonation. Clouds of lace gather with each sip.

The PBGC Aromatic glass showcases fruity apple juice and a modest funky yeast. Floral sweetness weaves throughout toasted sourdough.

The bitter sweet balance drifts toward a slight sourness. Modest acidity elevates subdued prepper, coriander, and mustard. The light lingering finish tends toward sour, while warmth also draws out sourness. A sweet white wine background draws out dehydrated apricots.

The syrupy texture matches a full body, and the 7.8% abv, while vigorous carbonation punctuates the dryness.

This is a good, relaxing beer, that is more suited to a cool, late summer afternoon, than the bitter below zero mid-winter day during which I enjoyed it. Fortunately, we have a house, with heat, from which to appreciate the bright blue sky above glistening white ground, and allow ourselves to be transported through time. By adding the yeast, this beer mellows, adding apple flavors and smoothness to the texture.

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Photo of Lone_Freighter
3.99/5  rDev +3.9%
look: 3.75 | smell: 4 | taste: 4 | feel: 4 | overall: 4

This was poured into a tulip. The appearance was a bronzed semi-burnt copper color. A finger’s worth of white foamy head quickly dissipated. Barely any lacing. The smell had sweet bready/sweet biscuits roaming into a light citrus sweet/glazed floral qualities. The taste followed through for the most part. Sweet breadiness strolls on into the aftertaste with the citrus making a decent effort to balance. On the palate, this one sat about a light to medium on the body. Carbonation feels good, somewhat light allowing some pop from the citrus to hit in a nice harsh sort of way. Overall, nice Biere De Garde that I would come back to.

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Photo of Parmesan
4.22/5  rDev +9.9%
look: 3.75 | smell: 4.25 | taste: 4.25 | feel: 4.25 | overall: 4.25

L: Slightly Hazy yellow gold with a big head that dissipates pretty quickly but leaves a thin layer on top.

S: The nose is met by a bouquet of fruit, with strong notes apple, peach and a little cherry. Notes of spice and baked bread with some honey.

T: Apple and peach with a note of Cherry, followed by spice and sweet honey. Also some nice baked bread.

F: Light body and fizzy crisp carbonation.

O: Slightly sweet but a very good bier de garde. Easy drinking for the ABV.

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Photo of biegaman
4.01/5  rDev +4.4%
look: 4.5 | smell: 4 | taste: 4 | feel: 3.75 | overall: 4

As a dog person, I'm partial to thinking Le Woof is a charming name and that it has an adorable label. But as a certified beer judge, I can say without bias that this joyously sparkling, brilliant golden-blond ale is a damn fine looking beer in and of itself. And the well-formed, pristine white, tirelessly persistent head is figurative icing on the cake.

By now I think everyone is familiar with the zesty, fruity, aromatic qualities of yeast. If not, this bouquet provides a fantastic crash-course; there's plenty of mulled orchard fruit esters, fresh-cracked spice and oven-warm bread. The age of this bottle (roughly 1 year) also showcases an enhanced, more nectarous and honeyed maltiness.

Le Woof is dedicated to the brewery dog, Hops, and like man's best friend seems similarly eager to please; despite being 7.8% it drinks with ease and, in turn, offers a practically therapeutic experience. The graininess is scrumptious, the hops smooth and the alcohol satiating. It's one of those strong beers that drinks like a light one; the body is lean, crisp and pleasantly warming.

The flavour profile is understated but intricate - there's no shortage of overripe apple, apricot, pear, yellow plum flavour (with acidity to match) as well as a pinch of mulling spices, a corner of fresh baguette, one or two biscuits and a teaspoon each of raw honey, green roobois and chamomile. This makes quite the treat for the good boy or girl in your life.

Bière de Garde is a very broad, open-ended, and often catch-all category which makes it difficult to assess on stylistic guidelines. In other words, this review was more about subjective taste than it was objective assessment and this style is one of the few I don't typically care for. But I really enjoyed Le Woof. A lot. So that tells you something...

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Photo of BrownAleBollocks
3.83/5  rDev -0.3%
look: 4 | smell: 4 | taste: 3.75 | feel: 3.75 | overall: 3.75

Pours a light burnt orange color with a huge fluffy cream color head that just doesn't quit. Aroma is hay, earth, funk, citric acidity, lemon, floral and fruity. Taste is more of the same with sweet citrus and floral notes upfront, followed by hay, bread dough, earth, and lemon hints. An overall sweetness persists. Mouthfeel is light, and crisply carbonated, it scrubs the palate with every sip. Overall, this is a very nice biere de garde that lends both belgian farmhouse and saison characters, with a heftier malt backbone.

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Photo of musicsherlock
3.81/5  rDev -0.8%
look: 4.25 | smell: 3.75 | taste: 3.75 | feel: 4 | overall: 3.75

Bottled 10/15
Tasted 8/16 from a snifter

Pours an opaque orange with two inch billowy, long lasting off-white, almost tan, head. Noticeable effervescence.

Smells of earthiness, yeast, grass, hint of lemon. Could be stronger and earthier.

First impression is sweet. Too sweet. Needs more earthy maltiness. After a couple of sips the palate adjusts, more balanced. Still a tad sweet for me. Hints of dark fruits mixed w lemony tartness.

Well carbonated, a little sticky at the back end

Enjoyable offering from an under-represented style here in the U.S. Will store a couple for cooler weather.

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Photo of ChainGangGuy
2.72/5  rDev -29.2%
look: 2.75 | smell: 2.5 | taste: 2.5 | feel: 4.5 | overall: 2.5

12 ounce bottle - $2.99 at Hop City in Atlanta, Georgia.

Appearance: Pours a generously clouded, pale amber body with a very thin, off-white head.

Smell: Sugar-encrusted, easily toasted breadiness, some spoiled stone fruits, a thin trickle of alcohol, slight spice and an odd, off-putting ferric, soiled note. Woof, indeed.

Taste: Bready, lightly toasty malts given a sweet, scantly caramelized glaze. Fruitiness of apples and apricots, though a mite bit past their prime. Minor spice. As with the nose, there's just a curious, unpleasant element to this one. Semi-dry, foul fruity finish, quite crisp (which, thankfully, helps to scour the taste off the tongue).

Mouthfeel: Medium-bodied. Well carbonated.

Overall: Fairly unappealing.

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Photo of KTCamm
3.45/5  rDev -10.2%
look: 3.75 | smell: 3.75 | taste: 3.5 | feel: 2.75 | overall: 3.25

7/13...dark cloudy amber, fast fizzy foam, high and white. Funky yeast nose, bubble gum hints. Lemon tart, high carbonation, sour citrus close. Fast finish with loads of citrus. Over carbonated; nice flavor but hard on the stomach. Needs better balance.

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Photo of Czequershuus
4.44/5  rDev +15.6%
look: 4.5 | smell: 4.75 | taste: 4.25 | feel: 4.25 | overall: 4.5

This beer pours a slightly hazy orange with a very large, fluffy head. The aroma offers up toffee, orange peel, clove, cardamom, violets, plum, and cumin. The flavor offers up rich but dry caramel and toffee, followed by the floral violet tones, and then the spicy flavors of clove and savory cumin. The mouthfeel is creamy but very dry. Overall this is a really solid and interesting beer - the flavor is extremely layered, with new flavor rising to the surface all the time.

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Photo of MattyG85
4.3/5  rDev +12%
look: 4.25 | smell: 4.25 | taste: 4.25 | feel: 4.25 | overall: 4.5

Poured from a 12 oz. bottle into a Duvel tulip glass.

Appearance: Pours a hazy amber orange with a lot of bubbles. Big two finger white head which settles into a thin creamy layer.

Smell: A spicy and fruity Belgian style aroma with a scent of Belgian yeast and fruit esters. Belgian yeast with a scent of peppers, clove, and coriander. Malt scent of caramel, straw, and cracker. Fruit hints of banana, white grape, pear, and apple along with some mild citrus. Also some grassy hop hints. A pretty nice aroma.

Taste: Like it smells, a spicy and fruity Belgian style taste with notes of yeast, spice, and fruit. Belgian yeast with notes of clove, pepper, and coriander. Malt notes of straw, caramel, and cracker. Dried fruit notes of banana, pear, apple, and white grapes along with some light citrus. Also some good notes of grassy hops. A pretty good taste.

Mouthfeel: Medium bodied with a moderate amount of carbonation. Medium bodied with a medium to high level of carbonation. Creamy and somewhat slick.

Overall: A pretty nice take on a Biere de Garde. Nice spice and dried fruit flavor.

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Photo of weareallfalafel
4.59/5  rDev +19.5%
look: 5 | smell: 4 | taste: 4.75 | feel: 4.75 | overall: 4.75

I'm not too experienced with this style, but here it goes. Poured from a 12oz bottle into a wine glass. Fairly deep golden color with a beautiful finger and a half head that leaves decent lacing and releases a beautiful grassy, and floral aroma. Tastes of grass, flowery flavors, a slight tartness, a touch of citrus (think lemony flavors) and a beautifully dry finish. Decently carbonated and fairly light in body. Relatively complex, but still quaffable and extremely tasty. Very good.

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Photo of JayQue
4.17/5  rDev +8.6%
look: 4.25 | smell: 4 | taste: 4.25 | feel: 4 | overall: 4.25

Really good Biere de Garde. Pours an almost clear light amber/light orange color with a huge delicately bubbly white head. The swirling pattern of bubbles in the flute glass looks as if there were a bubble machine generating them from the bottom of the glass, at least 5 minutes of strong bubble generation. Lacing is limited to a filmy short lasting coating on the sides of the glass. The aroma and taste both feature a strong presence of Belgian yeast...the strongest presence in the beer. This beer is also malty with a light fruit (white grapes) presence. The yeast is a bonus as far as I am concerned, kind of like an Ommegang thing...yeast featured in all their beers!!! Mouthfeel is light and very nicely carbonated. A little alcohol presence provides a nice bite. Several of the Biere de Gardes I have tried are a bit too delicate in the flavor department. With a good strong yeasty and malty backbone, this beer holds up well without compromising the style. Off Color did their usual good job!!!

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Photo of flagmantho
3.96/5  rDev +3.1%
look: 3.75 | smell: 4 | taste: 4 | feel: 3.75 | overall: 4

Poured from 12oz bottle into a tulip.

Appearance: cloudy medium-orange hue with a thick finger of frothy ivory foam. Quite nice.

Smell: sweet and lightly toasty with a nice level of funk and a dash of sourness. A very well-balanced bière de garde.

Taste: quite malty right up front, followed by a classic farmhouse funk, a little grassiness, and just a tiny tiny hint of tart. Very good indeed.

Mouthfeel: medium body with a decent level of carbonation and creaminess.

Overall: a very tasty beer; a bit high in ABV to be really sessionable but still a very drinkable brew.

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Photo of GreesyFizeek
4.42/5  rDev +15.1%
look: 4 | smell: 4.5 | taste: 4.5 | feel: 4 | overall: 4.5

Bottle purchased at Nathaniel Square Corner Store in Rochester, NY.

This one pours a slightly hazy amber/orange, with a long lasting half inch head, and not a lot in the way of lacing.

This smells like toasty malt, vanilla, creamy banana, some clove, caramel, and grassiness.

This is a really nice surprise. It's got a great yeast character, with creamy banana and clove, and a slight fruitiness, that melds well with the tightly constructed malt backbone, toasty and slighty caramelly. There's a bit of vanilla here, too, not sure where that's from, but I like it.

This is medium bodied, with a creamy and clean mouthfeel, and a higher level of carbonation.

I absolutely love this brewery, and most everything they do. This was wonderful.

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Photo of imonhiatus
4.38/5  rDev +14.1%
look: 4.25 | smell: 4.25 | taste: 4.5 | feel: 4.5 | overall: 4.25

picked this one up locally. I love that off color bottles show up on shelves in NY! this was a home run. one of the better biere de gardes I have tried. Great full body wother wonderful toasted malt

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Photo of Gus_13
4.1/5  rDev +6.8%
look: 4 | smell: 4 | taste: 4.25 | feel: 4 | overall: 4

Orange with a golden hue and white head. Head doesn't stick around long but it gives way to a ring around the glass and a puck of bubbles floating around. Matly grains, pear, slight fruit punch, but overall pretty clean. Great carbonation keeps the mouthfeel lively. Malty but not sweet on the flavor. Hints of spice from either the yeast or the hops but no real hop presence. Well done.

Way above average BdG. There are so many examples that are muddled and too sweet. This is not one of those.

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Photo of mntlover
3.87/5  rDev +0.8%
look: 4.25 | smell: 4 | taste: 3.75 | feel: 4 | overall: 3.75

Pours a cloudy murky burnt orange color with a thumb sized white head. Nice looking coloring head falls too fast and not much lace but love the color.

Aroma is fruity pear seems to dominate, good earthy yeast notes, some spicy earthy alcohol notes with hints of coriander. Seems little fruitier then most of this style but smells good.

Taste is nice and tart with fruity notes pear mostly with good earthy yeast. Finishes dry almost as if aged in wood with a little coriander.

Mouthfeel is medium carbonation is little too peppy but not enough to ruin the brew.

Overall little fruitier and funkier then most of this style, but its enjoyable enough and tasty enough to stand on its own. Defiantly worth a try, probably be a little better with a less carbonated batch.

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Photo of JordonHoltzman
3.8/5  rDev -1%
look: 4 | smell: 4 | taste: 3.75 | feel: 3.5 | overall: 3.75

Poured from bottle into tulip, a nice unfiltered but not hazy caramel/orange amber color with a thick white head that fades slowly, light lacing. Belgian yeast characters and European malt dominate the aroma, and the taste matches but gives off a sweeter taste than the aroma perceived. Rich in caramel, fruitiness. First de garde for me, it's interesting. Pretty high carbonation.

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Photo of Trevor11
4/5  rDev +4.2%
look: 4 | smell: 4 | taste: 4 | feel: 4 | overall: 4

This biere de garde has crazy carbonation. I only poured half of the bottle cautiously and the glass filled half with a growing, fluffy head. This is not quite a saison, it has more alcohol come through and earthy tones. Worth a try some time, but not a go to necessarily. I prefer their Apex Predator or Troublesome.

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Le Woof from Off Color Brewing
Beer rating: 86 out of 100 with 129 ratings