Punchdown Chambourcin
Side Project Brewing

Punchdown ChambourcinPunchdown Chambourcin
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Wild Ale
Ranked #144
Ranked #1,572
4.3 | pDev: 6.51%
Side Project Brewing
Missouri, United States
Punchdown ChambourcinPunchdown Chambourcin
Notes: Punchdown was the first hybrid beer we ever brewed. For this second release of Punchdown Chambourcin, we chose Chambourcin grapes from Noboleis Vineyards in the Augusta AVA along the Missouri River, located 32 miles from our brewery, for this wine inspired beer. As with the process of all of our fruited wild ales, and different than our Terroir Project hybrids, we blended mature beer (2 year old French Oak Flanders-inspired Red) with the wine grape must and then allowed the blend to re-ferment in stainless steel for 8 months before being naturally conditioned in the bottles and kegs.
Reviews: 19 | Ratings: 136 | Log in to view all ratings and sort
Photo of GreesyFizeek
GreesyFizeek from New York

3.79/5  rDev -11.9%
look: 3.75 | smell: 4 | taste: 3.75 | feel: 3.5 | overall: 3.75

Blend #2.

This one pours a very dark blood red/purplish-red color, with a very small head, and basically no lacing.

This is a red grape/wine bomb on the nose, with a touch of vinegar, a tannic character, acid, and lemon.

This is a bit more sledgehammer-to-the-head than Side Project is usually known for, as it's extremely acidic, with a very intense grape character. I get a touch of vinegar, perhaps from the Flanders Red base, along with intense sour cherry, some lemon, etc. The grape must is dominant by a number of degrees.

This is light bodied, with a slightly lower level of carbonation. It's certainly a slow sipper, as the drinkability isn't amazing.

This is a little too messy for me - I want a bit more of the base beer, and I think it would help if they dialed back the amount of grape must blended into the base beer. That being said, I'm still happy to have tried it.

Jun 26, 2020
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mgundy32 from Wisconsin

4.46/5  rDev +3.7%
look: 4.75 | smell: 4.25 | taste: 4.5 | feel: 4.5 | overall: 4.5

Poured from a 375ml bottle into a stemmed glass. Pours dark purplish red. Could be mistaken for a red wine. A small amount of fizzy head that dissipates quickly. Grapes are heavy on the nose with sweet acidic bite behind them. The sip is juicy grapes with the sharp acidic sweetness following. The nose really previews the sip. Not as sharply tart as other SP wild ales. It has a nice balance between being dry and sweet, leaning a hair to the dry side as it goes down and more sweet up front.

May 30, 2020
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hops_for_thought from New York

4.25/5  rDev -1.2%
look: 4.25 | smell: 4.25 | taste: 4.25 | feel: 4.25 | overall: 4.25

L: Grape juice dark purple with zero head

S: acidic wine funk nose, neither grape juice nor wine maybe something in the middle

T: tart and acidic, lots of grape. Think I get the Flemish red base if I try. Not much of the wile ale/funk notes I expected. Abv well hidden

F: appropriately (for me) light/nearing thin but not

O: solid beer, glad to have it but considering price of admission won’t chase it down again

Jan 11, 2020
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Luscious_Malfoy from Illinois

4.42/5  rDev +2.8%
look: 4.5 | smell: 4.25 | taste: 4.5 | feel: 4.25 | overall: 4.5

poured from a 375mL bottle into a stemmed bulb glass. pours a light purple almost identical to a glass of red wine. zero head but a few bubbles here and there. smells of grape juice, grape must and a bit of oak. taste is grapes, grapes, grapes. it’s got a little funk, oak and sourness but it’s very wine-oriented. it doesn’t have a ton of carbonation to it moving it even less away from the beer world and more into the wine world. it’s an interesting brew for sure. i think i prefer the pinot noir to this one but it’s still a very good beer which packs a punch and leans more on subtle wine-like sourness and acidity than the typical side project aggressively sour style.

Sep 26, 2019
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mothman from Minnesota

4.25/5  rDev -1.2%
look: 4.25 | smell: 4.25 | taste: 4.25 | feel: 4.25 | overall: 4.25

Raspberry purple. No head.

Lots of red grape flavors and wine notes. Acidic. Lemony. Sour and tart.

Light bodied. Ends pretty clean.

Great sour, but I like the stone fruit ones better.

Jul 09, 2016
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YodersBeerEmporium from Iowa

4.25/5  rDev -1.2%
look: 4.25 | smell: 4.25 | taste: 4.25 | feel: 4.25 | overall: 4.25

Some of Side Projects finest! Solid beer! Purchased this bottle along with many others of its caliber for a small group tasting and it was definitely one of the stars!

May 02, 2016
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HoppyBastard1 from Pennsylvania

4.46/5  rDev +3.7%
look: 4.5 | smell: 4.75 | taste: 4.25 | feel: 4.5 | overall: 4.5

Purplish/red color with a fair amount of head, very pretty beer. Sweaty gym socks, nice grape/wine flavor, a touch more acidic than I would have preferred, but overall another well put together by the Side Project staff.

Feb 03, 2016
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rodmanfor3 from Vermont

4.35/5  rDev +1.2%
look: 4.25 | smell: 4.25 | taste: 4.5 | feel: 4.25 | overall: 4.25

L: Deep red/crimson pour

S: Very off-putting at first, with wafts of sweaty gym socks, dead skin, and visions of fungus on hairy toes. Over the course of a few minutes, the smell transitions to more of a funky cheese variety, none the more pleasant than the olfactory buffet that preceded it. Then, over the course of another fifteen minutes or so, the unpleasantness goes away; enter sweet grapes with a touch of barrel.

T: The taste is fantastic. Well carbonated, wonderful fruit flavor, very tart but not overpowering.

F: This beer drinks easy.

O: Think of this beer as a less fruit-forward and mellowed out version of Fencerow. Outside of the initial smell of this beer, everything is classic Side Project goodness.

As for why I gave the smell a 4.25 rating, I felt it justified, given the story the nose on the beer told about its history, from farm to palate, transitioning from undesirable goods to sought after commodity in such a short period of time.

Dec 22, 2015
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BMMillsy from Florida

4.35/5  rDev +1.2%
look: 4.25 | smell: 4.25 | taste: 4.5 | feel: 4.25 | overall: 4.25

Bottle courtesy of Joe. Thanks buddy. Pours a rich deep purple color with very little head, settles like a glass of wine with a few bubbles. Aroma is big time funk and sour, acidic, slight vinegar, some sweet grape juice notes, vinous, nice. Flavor follows with big jammy wine grapes, nice notes of vinegar sourness, acidic but not overly so. Really highlights the fruit here. Light to medium bodied, strong carbonation, but the fruit lays heavy on the tongue. I really am enjoying this one, and am surprised to see it rated as low as it is. It doesn't have the insanely aggressive sourness of other in this series, but I'm OK with that. Very nice.

Oct 06, 2015
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Alieniloquium from Florida

3.98/5  rDev -7.4%
look: 4 | smell: 3.5 | taste: 4 | feel: 4 | overall: 4.5

375 mL bottle poured into a snifter. Bright purple. No head. Aroma is berries and dark fruits. Not what I'd peg as grapes. Does smell winey, though. Thankfully, it's nowhere near as sour as other Side Project wilds. Mild sourness. Juicy dark berries and grapes. Oak. Tastes like white wine up front and then the grapes make it tastes like red wine. Who knows. Low carbonation.

Sep 08, 2015
Photo of Kurmaraja
Kurmaraja from California

4.3/5  rDev 0%
look: 4 | smell: 4.5 | taste: 4.25 | feel: 4.25 | overall: 4.25

Garnet / purple with few bubbles. Very much a vinous look. Grape and tannin in the nose; a general berry cherry nose. Less oak or funk than I'd like but pleasant. A much smoother, less acidic beer than many SP small format bottles and better for it. What it gives up in complexity it gains in drinkability. For the style though, a clearly less complex beer than Jester King's Syrah.

Aug 21, 2015
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billab914 from Virginia

3.92/5  rDev -8.8%
look: 4.25 | smell: 3.5 | taste: 4 | feel: 4.25 | overall: 4

Nice color to it. The aroma has some noticeable sulfer presence to it that overshadows the grapes some. Grapes come through more in the taste but the funky sourness is lacking. My least favorite of the fruited sours so far, maybe needs a little time. Mot a bad beer overall though.

Aug 15, 2015
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Vonerichs from Colorado

4.18/5  rDev -2.8%
look: 4.5 | smell: 4 | taste: 4.25 | feel: 4 | overall: 4.25

Pretty cool looking beer. Plum hue with a pink head. Once the carbonation subsides it looks like a blush.

Very light aroma. Grape skins, lilac, and vinegar.

Slightly tannic and dry. Tart. The grapes come through jammy.

Light, sour, mild carbonation.

Pretty nice and unique with the jammy/sour dichotomy.

Aug 05, 2015
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ironchefmiyagi13 from Tennessee

3.66/5  rDev -14.9%
look: 4.75 | smell: 4.25 | taste: 3 | feel: 3.5 | overall: 4

I will try not to be overly harsh with this beer, but besides the absolutely gorgeous appearance and nice-smelling nose, this was a vinegar bomb. The grapes are there...that isn't the problem. Acetic acid was a little too much for me.

Oh well, on to the next.

Jul 31, 2015
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Beer4B from Florida

3.26/5  rDev -24.2%
look: 4.5 | smell: 2.25 | taste: 3.5 | feel: 3.5 | overall: 3.5

Pours a beautiful purplish-amber color. The nose is rather disappointing as any grape was hard to find, almost an off-putting nose and not what I would expect. The taste is much better with a nice helping of grapes, but it fades rather quickly with little to no depth and a dry finish. Very drinkable but rather forgettable for me.

Jul 21, 2015
Photo of Stevedore
Stevedore from Oregon

4.28/5  rDev -0.5%
look: 3.75 | smell: 4.5 | taste: 4.25 | feel: 4.25 | overall: 4.25

375ml bottle. Served in a Side Project Missouri sour taster glass.

Pours a dark purple-reddish body, minimal head, not much lacing. Looks like a bright red wine in some ways. Smell is of sweet red grapes, a bit of sweet malt, minimal funk; not too tart or acidic. In some ways, it's very fruity, kind of like what I would imagine red wine fruit rollups to be. Flavour is similarly sweet and fruity; not a ton of funk or complexity to it, but I could definitely drink a whole 375ml bottle to myself. Very easy drinking, fruity with a better balance than most Side Project fruited 375ml's. Mouthfeel is medium bodied, a bit lighter on carbonation, ridiculously easy to drink even though it's not incredibly complex. Overall, a very tasty red grape AWA that I would certainly be happy to drink again.

Jul 18, 2015
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StonedTrippin from Colorado

4.52/5  rDev +5.1%
look: 4.75 | smell: 4.5 | taste: 4.5 | feel: 4.5 | overall: 4.5

i have never had a beer this color, and i know almost nothing about this particular grape varietal, but this is one of the best beers ive had this year, and one of the best fruited wild ales going, including the ones made by cantillon. its crayon purple, really unnatural looking, the way atrial from jester king looks almost artificial its so bright, this has that look to it. smells and tastes just amazing. there is a tartness from the grapes, that you might get from the skins, less sweet and juicy than i expected as the yeasts here have dried this right up. so much funk and tartness too, moderate acidity but a lot of oak and bretty weirdness as well. all of the side project wilds i had the privilege of drinking had very dynamic yeast and bacterial components, and this one fits with the others in its complexity and balance. the fruit is really different, not as wine-like as i thought it would be, instead tangy and tart like fresh, slightly under ripe red grapes. not sure if this is a juice or a wine varietal, but it works awfully well in this wild ale. so cool to experience this terroir, all local ingredients including yeast and barrels, thats really cool. i am confident nobody has made a beer anything like this, and i am fully impressed with it. amazing use of fruit, beautiful sour beer, as good as it gets really. how hard is it to get a bottle of this?

Jun 30, 2015
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boilermakerbrew from Indiana

4.32/5  rDev +0.5%
look: 4.75 | smell: 4 | taste: 4.5 | feel: 4.25 | overall: 4.25

A- Pours a deep rose to medium reddish-purple in color. The head that forms is small and doesn't hang around long. There is little to no lacing due to lack of a head. Some light gets through the body, but it is mostly a light to medium haze.

S- Light and delicate grape and funk dance across the nostrils at first sniff. The grapes are fairly dry and mirror the scent of a good, oaked Chambourcin well. There is a bit of tartness in the scent that the wine wouldn't have, but it does have a touch of leathery smell to it as well.

T- First flavor that hits the palate is tart and jammy grapes. This really tastes like a fruitier and more tart version of the wine style up front. The grapes darken in flavor as you drink and the level of tart moves up and down a little throughout the drink. A dry and oaky flavor moves in and ramps up the sour component of the beer a little bit. If you really search behind the sour and fruit flavors there is a bit of funky wild ale in there that balances out the flavors a little. Lingering flavor is the tangy and tart grape from the start of the drink.

M- Carbonation in this one is lower than most of Cory's beers in this style, but still very detectable. Alcohol is undetectable, but the tartness of the beer slows the drinking down a bit. There is a bit of astringency on the palate form the sourness as well.

Overall, this isn't one of my favorites from Cory, but it is still really good. If I had to give one description, it would be the beer equivalent of an oaked, dry Chambourcin wine. The nuances of the grape are in there, they are just a little more forward in the beer, especially the fruit flavor. This is really a must try to the wine lover that also likes beer.

Jun 26, 2015
Photo of Memphisjoe14
Memphisjoe14 from Illinois

5/5  rDev +16.3%
look: 5 | smell: 5 | taste: 5 | feel: 5 | overall: 5

Look - Medium purple maroon color, slight carbonation, head quickly dissolved

Smell - Open up a box of Honey Nut Cheerios or Lucky Charms and take a big whiff. That is what you are going to smell along with slight fruit and it is magnificent!

Taste - Big sour punch followed by complex levels of flavor. Hard to describe really but the taste changed about 4 times after the initial punch.

Feel - Tingly on the lips. Lingering in a fantastic way. Very little bitterness.

Overall - Just wow! Split a bottle last night after the release and I'm still thinking about how awesome it was today. This goes way beyond what I was expecting.

Jun 25, 2015
Punchdown Chambourcin from Side Project Brewing
Beer rating: 95 out of 100 with 136 ratings