Blue Sunday Sour | New Holland Brewing Company

very good
124 Reviews
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Blue Sunday SourBlue Sunday Sour

Brewed by:
New Holland Brewing Company
Michigan, United States

Style: American Wild Ale

Alcohol by volume (ABV): 6.60%

Availability: Rotating

Notes / Commercial Description:
This unique anniversary libation, heritage-blended from our library of barrel-soured beers, exhibits deeply layered flavors of malt and oak, with a tart finish.
Pairings: wild game,poultry & charcuterie.

17.1° Plato 8.7% abv

Added by lackenhauser on 07-13-2008

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Reviews: 124 | Ratings: 592
Photo of StoutHunter
4/5  rDev +5.3%
look: 4 | smell: 4 | taste: 4 | feel: 4 | overall: 4

I picked up a bottle of New Holland's Blue Sunday Sour last week for $7.99 at The Lager Mill. I think I may have tried this once at a beer festival a few years ago, but I can't fully remember, so I thought I should give the latest release a try, so lets see how it goes. 2015 Vintage. Poured from a foiled 22oz bottle in a teku.

A- The label looks good, it's got a classy look to it and it's eye catching. It poured a dark ruby red color that took on more of a brighter ruby color when held to the light with almost two fingers worth of creamy tan head that died down to a thin ring that stayed till the end and it left a little bit of patchy lacing behind. This is a good looking beer, I have no complaints.

S- The aroma starts off with a slightly higher amount of medium sweetness with a nice cherry and berry like aroma being the first to stick out and it makes for a nice blend of berry and fruity aromas with no single one sticking out the most and it's followed by the yeast which imparts a somewhat lighter funky aroma with just a slight vinegar like aroma. Towards the end comes the oak which imparts a nice and noticeable woody oak aroma with just a slight bit of vanilla coming through. This beer had a good aroma, it's just what I would expect from the style.

T- The taste seems to be similar to the aroma and it starts off with a medium amount of sweetness being the first to show up and it's followed by the sour berry and cherry aspects that i got in the aroma and they show up nicely and the sourness is on the higher side of medium. UP next comes the yeast and oak which seem to show up at the same time and impart a funky oak flavor with malts showing up towards the end and lingering into the aftertaste taste along with a little bit of sourness and some berry and cherry flavors. This is a good tasting beer, it has pretty much everything that I look for in the style and it doesn't have any off flavors.

M- Pretty smooth, a little refreshing, slightly acidic, crisp, on the lighter side of being medium bodied with a slightly higher amount of medium carbonation. The mouthfeel was pretty good and it worked well with this beer.

Overall I thought this was a good beer and I thought it was a good example of the style, it had everything that I look for in the style and while it isn't a favorite of the style, it pretty good in every aspect and when it comes down to it I enjoyed drinking it. This beer had nice drinkability, it was pretty smooth, a little refreshing, slightly acidic, crisp, not too filling and the taste does a nice job at holding my attention, half the bottle is the perfect amount for me, but because it isn't too acidic I wouldn't rule out drinking the full bottle. What I like the most about this beer was that it was just a tasty and good example of the style. What I liked the least about this beer was that it didn't have a little more complexity, I think the separates it from some of the better sours. I would buy this beer again, I already got one for the cellar and I wouldn't mind getting another one. I would recommend this beer, especially if you like sours. All in all I was happy with this beer and I was a little impressed that New Holland could make a beer like this and keep it under $10 a bottle, there's hardly any breweries that can do that and I respect them for that. It's one of the better New Holland beers I've had and I would say it'a above average for the style. Good job guys, this was one tasty and affordable sour, keep up the good work.

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Photo of Zach136
4.23/5  rDev +11.3%
look: 4.25 | smell: 4.25 | taste: 4.25 | feel: 4 | overall: 4.25

Appearance: Clear brown, little head.

Aroma/Flavor: Heavy oak over a medium+ complex tartness with hints of blueberries and toast.

Mouthfeel: Medium + bodied.

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Photo of tigg924
4.17/5  rDev +9.7%
look: 4.25 | smell: 4 | taste: 4.25 | feel: 4 | overall: 4.25

Appearance: 1/4 inch head, low carbonation, gold-brown in color, clear

Smell: sharp sour mix and fruit candy

Taste: light oak, sharp sour mix, touch of dark fruits--blueberry and cherry

Mouthfeel: super sour with a touch of sweetness, light in body, prickly medium carbonation

Overall: One of the better New Holland beers that I have had. Super complex. This one is a sipper and the fruit comes out towards the end as it warms. I would get this again if I found it on tap.

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Photo of Jack_Malts
3.92/5  rDev +3.2%
look: 3.5 | smell: 4 | taste: 4 | feel: 3.5 | overall: 4

A very decent sour, nice for an American brewery. It is well balanced with flavors of red wine vinegar and blueberries. Also has a nice underlying malty sweetness. My only complaint would be that it's a bit watery on the finish. If there was a category for price point, this would get a 5 in it. Definitely try.

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Photo of Beerlover
4.72/5  rDev +24.2%
look: 4.75 | smell: 4 | taste: 5 | feel: 4.75 | overall: 5

I can't remember the last time I had anew Holland beer that I cared for or enough to ever want to buy again, lets see if they can change that with a stab of one of my favorite styles....
A: pours a silky looking clear amberish red/brown with a half inch light khaki head, has a good looking carbonation with a medium number of average sized bubbles
S:Smells like a good sour but not super sour smelling, hope its more sour that it smells, no hops aroma or maltyness to speak of some slight nuttiness perhaps from the oak.
T: wow! this is amazing, starts of mediumly sour, but after getting half way through the glass it gets more and more intense!! there is a good subtle nuttiness in the aftertaste as well
M: medium carbonation with a slightly silky mid palate and a bit of a dry aftertaste.
O.a: I would definitely buy this again, price point is great too!

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Photo of KYGunner
4.13/5  rDev +8.7%
look: 3.75 | smell: 3.75 | taste: 4.25 | feel: 4.5 | overall: 4.25

This poured with almost no head, probably to utilize the space since it seemed a touch expensive. The color was a light amber with a blueish hue that gave it a near wine like quality.

The nose is funky and full with a yeasty, lactose tone. The blueberries are noticeable in a dry, vegetative and wild sense. Tones of malt such as caramel and toffee can be found.

The flavor is sour with notes of balsamic vinegar, yeast and blueberries. The backbone is stabilized by a dark fruity malt like date and fig and then it ends with caramelized sweetness. All this and then ribbons of cream run through the taste as it gives off a bourbon and oak flavor.

The feel is subtlety tart but with no pucker factor. This glides down with heft and creaminess like a good barrel aged stout.

This ranks amongst the best sours I've had as you get tons of complexity and fruity tartness without the lip puckering pain.

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Photo of mrfrancis
4.03/5  rDev +6.1%
look: 4 | smell: 3.5 | taste: 4.25 | feel: 4.5 | overall: 4

A: Pours a clear, dark amber with a creamy, thick khaki head.

S: Aromas of funky, lactic yeast, oak, caramel, unripened vine fruits, cider vinegar, sea salt, and toast are present on the nose.

T: Notes of charred oak, minerals, sea salt, unripened grapes, spiced pear, pomegranate, cherry pits, unripened blackberry, cider vinegar, caramel, biscuit, toast, and lactic yeast funk swirl across the palate. The finish is tart and fruity with cider vinegar, toast, oak, and lactic yeast notes underscored by dark fruits and red wine.

M: Moderately full in body and somewhat dry. Carbonation is initially prickly, but soon mellows. Superbly balanced and incredibly drinkable for such a complex brew.

O: A really excellent sour that I feel has been underrated to this point. It reminds me of many of the more traditional English old ales. I recommend it highly, but definitely buy a bottle to try now and another to put back for at least a year or two.

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Photo of t8dd
4.12/5  rDev +8.4%
look: 4 | smell: 4.5 | taste: 4 | feel: 4 | overall: 4

2014 Vintage. Bottle poured into a tulip. Notes of wood, dried cherries on the nose. Clear deep ruby red with no head and very minimal lacing. Taste is sour, dark jammy fruits, wood, slight funk, apples. Robust mouthfeel with a dry finish. Really good.

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Photo of thecheapies
4.05/5  rDev +6.6%
look: 3.75 | smell: 4.25 | taste: 4 | feel: 4 | overall: 4

A browned cherry color with great clarity. I didn't find any yeast cake at the bottom of the bottle, so there was no fear of pouring out any bottle-conditioning. A ring of foam is the 'head' of the beer.

Semi-sweet syrupy malts and bright acidic sour in the nose; reminiscent of red currant, tart raspberry, sour cherry, and berries. Lots of oakiness and a hint of vanilla. Makes it seem like it could be a Flemish Red, but it's got a different character/level of sourness. The sour is a bit more rigid, intense, and almost chemical.

Bright sourness with some nose-clearing effect, but not without a tannic fruitiness and split oakiness. A good smattering of malty flavors with some red apple and cooked cherries. Lots of convoluted tart fruit notes that come across darker-skinned varietals. Oak levels are higher, but work nearly perfectly. A little bit hard-watered, and there is a minerality that follows with that. Carbonation is quite happening, perhaps, thanks to the fresh bottle. The body is great; it has a slight slickness, but remains on the fuller side. An excellent wild ale.

New Holland... I'm impressed. Recommended.

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Photo of mfnmbvp
3.83/5  rDev +0.8%
look: 4 | smell: 3.5 | taste: 4 | feel: 3.5 | overall: 4

22 oz. bottle, vintage 2014. Acquired this bottle at the local Binny's for something like $7.99. After eyeing the 2012 vintage for two years, I'm glad to finally have this. This year's vintage lists a 6.60% abv on the back label.

Poured into a clear balloon snifter.

A - Pours a nice dark coppery ruby color with some purple hues in there. One finger of thick bubbly tan head that falls quickly. Some thin lacing. Looks good.

S - The smell is comprised of fruity sour acidity, oak wood, leather, brown sugar, bready malt, and some yeastiness. Very mild alcohol presence. Indistinct fruitiness like grape / fig / plum / prunes.

T - The taste does seem to have some sort of a thin graininess that I was expecting in there somewhere, but it is very pleasant, layered, and complex. Grain, oak wood, acidic sour, cream, hints of vanilla, cherry / grapes / raisins, and some yeast / bacterial funkiness.

M - Feel is medium bodied with okay carbonation; probably a bit too high, but it is passable and certainly very easy to drink. Smooth, with a dry finish.

Overall, I could see some room for improvement, but it definitely scratches that sour itch, and I think I can surely say this beer is underrated. Probably the most interesting, layered, and complex beer I've had from New Holland, and I would have it again. Recommended.

New Holland Blue Sunday Sour ---4/5.

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Photo of Axnjxn
3.74/5  rDev -1.6%
look: 4.25 | smell: 4 | taste: 3.5 | feel: 3.75 | overall: 3.75

2014 bottle into a tulip

dark brown pour , big head. smell is of sour tart cherries. taste is meh..cherries but very malty. way too malty. just an okay taste but not great by any means.ok feel. good carbonation.

overall just okay. not really recommended.

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Photo of Badger6
4.1/5  rDev +7.9%
look: 4 | smell: 4 | taste: 4.25 | feel: 4 | overall: 4

Draft into a tulip, poured at the DoG Street Pub in Williamsburg, VA on 7 Feb 2014.

A: Deep reddish-amber color, head receded by the time I got the beer, but still a significant ring at glass edge. Some lacing.

S: Sour cherries, tart young raisins. Some malt notes are present as well. Smelled very clean.

T: Followed the nose. Tart cherries right in the front. Has an acidic tone, slightly towards vinegar. Malts follow in the middle, some toasted caramel perhaps. A little bit of woodiness, but not much. There is an earthy tone towards the end.

M: Light body and gently carbonated. Sourness makes the beer feel dry. Finishes nicely, with a bit of sweetness at the end, but not much.

O: This is a good example of a Belgian sour from a quality American craft brewer. This is an easy drinking sour, and a good starting point for someone looking to try this style.

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Photo of jbaker67
3.85/5  rDev +1.3%
look: 4 | smell: 4 | taste: 3.75 | feel: 4 | overall: 3.75

Poured clear mahogany brown body with an average sized foamy beige head. Aroma of light sour notes, chalky, dusty, cherry, some light chocolate and acidity. Medium body that is rather acidic, average to stronger carbonation with strong acidity on the end. Flavor is nicely sour, berries, cherry, lemons, touch of grains.

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Photo of jasonguard
4.49/5  rDev +18.2%
look: 4.5 | smell: 4.25 | taste: 4.75 | feel: 4 | overall: 4.5

10oz snifter poured at The Cask Cafe in Richmond. At first, I wasn't keen on the flavor. Cold it was dry like a dry wine. The sour was strong and I had to wait for the finish to get the fruit. Still, it hung out in my mouth for a while, dry and wine-like.

As the glass warmed up, flavors of cocoa and fig come through. Maybe a touch of prune juice. The bubbles remain, making the roasty dark brew pretty light. Lots more sweetness and juiciness come though for the remainder of the glass. The dry feeling is long gone. This one packs a soothing punch. A sipper, at least until it gets warm. Then it's all delicious.

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Photo of clayrock81
3.83/5  rDev +0.8%
look: 4 | smell: 4 | taste: 3.75 | feel: 3.75 | overall: 3.75

Poured a purplish brown, if such color combo could exist, with fizzy head and minor lace. For the most part, I am getting nothing but sour fruit patches in the aroma and not much in terms of funk or sweetness, nor are the fruits that noticeable (mostly just sour). The beer seems to be the same as it goes down easy, light bodied, a little yeast in there, and while there is a tinge of sweetness coming from somewhere (fruity or just sugary) it is mostly sour fruit flavors. Not puckering or sickening sour so I easily finished the beer and had no problems but nothing complex - just some light sour fruits (mostly I will take cherry and blueberry, maybe black cherry). An alright beer that I am glad to have tried but nothing spectacular in my opinion.

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Photo of buschbeer
3.85/5  rDev +1.3%
look: 4 | smell: 4 | taste: 3.75 | feel: 4 | overall: 3.75

1 PINT 6 FL. OZ. bottle
Served in a beer flute
Vintage 2013

A - This beer pours rust colored with amber highlights. It is topped with one inch of tan head.

S - It smells tart. There are some light fruit notes.

T - The taste is sour and acidic. It reminds me of sour cider with a dry finish.

M - Medium

O - It is a lot more sour than I expected from New Holland. It is not bad at all.

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Photo of weeare138
4.15/5  rDev +9.2%
look: 3.75 | smell: 4.25 | taste: 4.25 | feel: 4 | overall: 4

Appears a murky dark amber with a fluffy head of off-white that slowly fades into a gentle cap. Scattered bits of lacing are left around the glass.
Smell is of pedioccocus up front with hints of cilantro, vanilla, mixed berries, and lemongrass.
Taste is of the aromas with a citrusy key lime standout atop tart berries, yogurt, and vanilla custard.
Mouthfeel is medium-full bodied with a sweet tart pucker that is sweet up front and a tart, dry finish. Pretty balanced for a sour. Nothing out of control in this one.

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Photo of johnnnniee
3.77/5  rDev -0.8%
look: 3.75 | smell: 4.75 | taste: 3.25 | feel: 3.5 | overall: 3.75

2013 vintage Bottle from Food and Friends in Philly.
Pours a crystal clear reddish brown with a decent sized tan head that slowly dissipates to a cap on top. Funk and oak permeate from the glass as soon as the cap gets cracked. Vanilla, lemons, sour cherries, brown sugar, and a hint of balsamic round out the nose nicely. The flavor is tart lemony acid. There's a brief sugary sweetness up front that quickly gets swallowed by lemons tart cherries mouth puckering lactic and carbonic acid abounds. The finish is fairly dry with a sharp lingering tartness. Very little of the oak or brett funk survives into the flavor. Medium body with a moderate level of carbonation and a tart sharp mouthfeel. This smells wonderful but the taste is bracingly tart. I enjoyed it like munching on sour patch kids, but on the plus side I forgot how hot it was while I was drinking this.

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Photo of StonedTrippin
3.86/5  rDev +1.6%
look: 3.75 | smell: 4 | taste: 3.75 | feel: 3.75 | overall: 4

I hate to call a sour generic, because they are all so distinctly different from one another. this one though, takes me someplace ive already been. I like going there and all, but I like when this genre takes me away somewhere new. pours a bright copper new penny color, clear as day, with a few fingers of lazy white foam. the nose is fruity sour, like a mix of dried and fresh pitted fruits, and a whole lot of acid. the yeast flavor in this beer is more sour than funk, more bacterial than saison, and somehow the flavors are all warped into a strange sugary conglomeration. the alcohol feels wine-like, the fruits feel like candy, and the sour is concentrated heavily towards the front of my tongue. its would be dryness is compromised by the residual sugar, but there is a nice oaky prominence to the finish that is really lovely. its good, but lacking some of the complexity and mouthfeel dynamics that makes this style so fun. good carbonation but the sweetness makes it feel heavy just the same. one bottle of this is about all I can stomach, but I appreciate the effort from new Holland like I always do. you can score a better sour for your buck, but if you cant get enough, give this one a shot.

edit: the 2014 edition is far superior to earlier releases, a bit darker in color, and a more refined sour finish. fruity but far dryer. definitely worth revisiting this vintage if you were similarly uninspired by earlier ones. bumbling up a few marks for this years.

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Photo of champ103
3.47/5  rDev -8.7%
look: 3.75 | smell: 3.5 | taste: 3.5 | feel: 3 | overall: 3.5

A: Pours a dark ruby brown color. A finger and a half of white foam rises. Then recedes in a minute. Light lace left behind.
S: Vinegary, sour cherries up front. Not much else. Some toasted and caramel malt. That is about it.
T: Follows the nose with a nice tart/sour fruit flavor up front. Best I can tell, cherries. A bit on the vinegary side. Then the malts come in. Toasted, caramel, and sweet. Maybe just a bit of wood coming through as this warms?
M/D: A medium body and carbonation. Not nearly as crisp or effervescent as I would like. A bit muddled and even a little thin. Not hard to drink. I will finish the bottle with ease.

A decent, run of the mild wild ale. Maybe a good starter starter wild for those that are not up to the intense funk/cheesy/sour that many can be. Still something I am enjoying.

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Photo of thagr81us
3.85/5  rDev +1.3%
look: 3.75 | smell: 3.75 | taste: 4 | feel: 3.75 | overall: 3.75

This particular sampling was from Barrel #22 and was unfiltered! Served from tap into a Raleigh Rare & Vintage Beer Tasting snifter. Poured a deep red-orange brown with a minimal off-white head. Maintained decent lacing throughout the glass. The aroma was comprised of sweet malt, fruit, sour, tart, wood, and strawberry. The flavor was of sweet malt, sour, tart, earth, fruit, strawberry, butter, and wood. It had a light feel on the palate with high carbonation. Overall this was a pretty decent brew. I went into this one with some idea on what to expect based on some of the past reviews. However, most of them were from the bottled version which I'm guessing was filtered at least some. With this one basically being straight out of the barrel, I can honestly say that there was quite a bit more wood intensity going on here that mixed really well with all the other aspects I came across. The sour and tart in the name was definitely there and kept your palate on its toes as you would hope for/expect. Definitely glad I got the chance to sample this one.

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Photo of BEERchitect
3.62/5  rDev -4.7%
look: 3.5 | smell: 4 | taste: 3.5 | feel: 3.5 | overall: 3.5

New Holland's sour wood-aged program continues with Blue Sunday Sour- a fruit heavy sour ale that favors the funky-fresh dry taste over that of candied sweetness. It's a beautiful beer that's both inviting and challenged in its complexities.

With hues of deep ruby red and purplish tones, the beer starts its fruit crusade immediately upon the pour. A violent pop of the cork leads to a highly effervescent character to start. Champagne-like, the beer builds a excitable head that looses its fizz soon after but allows a collar of foam to wrap the edge of the glass and with no real lace to mention.

Sharply acidic, the fruit sourness is front and center with the scent of ripening blueberries, blackberries, black cherries, and sour grapes. Acetic vinegar-like acids, the musty funk of vine-dried fruit, and clean lactic sour notes all swirl about the nose with only a hint of oak, tobacco, and fruit sweetness in support.

Flavors fare similarly as the commingling of fruit juice sweetness and tart berries, apples, limes, salt water taffy and grapes alternate in the beer's early command. But as the beer transitions to middle palate, the sweetness fades and the sourness takes hold- red wine vinegar, dry tart cider, reisling and limes deliver a complex dry taste. Finishing woodish with weathered oak, cellar must, and leather; the beer is dusty dry and with a linger of sour fruit.

Medium-light on the palate- the early malt textures and slim residual sweetness is quickly sliced through by the beer's acidity and clean lactic character. Lightly astringent and powdery in finish, the beer has a long draw in between where the initial taste fades and the finish doesn't present itself and causes the beer to feel thin and watery until the closing bitterness, alcohol warmth, and wood tannin takes hold.

Where the beer exhibits all of what's good about Sour Ales, especially the fruited varieties; it still lacks the depth, complexity, and intensity than authentic Belgian versions can display. Though simplified and somewhat one-dimensional, its a very pleasant and characterful Sour Ale that will satisfy even the most serious fans of the style.

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Photo of Etan
3.79/5  rDev -0.3%
look: 4 | smell: 3.75 | taste: 3.75 | feel: 4 | overall: 3.75

22oz bottle into a tulip. 2013 vintage.

A: Pours a deep purplish-red with a decent off-white head.

S: Light lactic acid, lots of tannic oak, pineapple brett. The oak aroma has a bit of an odd (but not entirely unpleasant) egg-cream aspect to it that I've noticed in other New Holland barrel-aged beers. Caramel, light berry tartness, vanilla, coconut.

T: Moderate, lightly acetic tartness comes out first, joined by sweet caramel and vanilla notes from the tannins. Clearly a heavy portion of this is bourbon barrel-aged. A bit of toasted malt and very dry oak on the end.

M: Light-bodied with zesty carbonation.

O: A bit of an odd wild ale due to the barrel influence here, but certainly not unenjoyable.

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Photo of barczar
3.95/5  rDev +3.9%
look: 3.75 | smell: 4.25 | taste: 4 | feel: 3.5 | overall: 3.75

Pours a brilliant amber with minimal beige head that dissipates quickly to nearly nothing.

Lactic acid and a vinous, wine-like character dominate the aroma initially, with oak and a hint of acetone surfacing later.

Flavor is fairly tart throughout. There's an underlying caramel sweetness reminiscent of dark berries. Oak is somewhat light.

Body is fairly light and watery, with low carbonation and a moderate alcohol warmth.

I enjoyed this sour, but it lacks a little in backbone.

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Photo of match1112
3.13/5  rDev -17.6%
look: 3.75 | smell: 3.25 | taste: 3 | feel: 2.75 | overall: 3.25

2013 vintage 22oz bottle

a: clear garnet body with a half inch of tan head that quickly disappears.

s: very tart. more cherry than blueberries

t: lots of berries on the tongue, kinda like a bad flavored soda. very acidic and tart.

m: seems a little syrupy, good carbonation, mouth puckering dry finish

o: drinkable, makes a decent intro into sours, alochol is hidden well.

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Blue Sunday Sour from New Holland Brewing Company
3.8 out of 5 based on 592 ratings.
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