Allagash Brewing Company

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American Wild Ale
Ranked #127
Ranked #951
4.29 | pDev: 7.23%
Allagash Brewing Company
Maine, United States
Notes: This beer is a sour red ale fermented with Maine cherries and Brettanomyces in stainless for almost a year. The cherries were a blend of Balaton and Montmorrency and added at a rate of 2lbs per gallon. Copper in color, Nancy has an aroma of cherries, bread crust and a touch of cinnamon. The flavor is a medley of tart cherry, citrus and pie spice. We think you'll dig it!
Reviews: 95 | Ratings: 723 | Log in to view all ratings and sort
Reviews by Nunya:
Photo of Nunya
4.11/5  rDev -4.2%
look: 4 | smell: 4.25 | taste: 4 | feel: 4 | overall: 4.25

More User Reviews:
Photo of Bowdoinbeerboy
4.75/5  rDev +10.7%

This beer pours with almost no head. What little there is fads very quicky to light rimming of the glass. The beer itself is a bright golden/copper color. It is completely opaque and has very apparent carbonation. The nose is very light and fruity, this is complimented very nicely with a fairly subtle hit of brett funkyness. The beer has some good fruity sweetness up front (pretty clear cherry notes here, almost like ripe cherry's) and then this fades and a solid hit of brett funk comes up. This funky, bitter, lightly acidic flavor hangs around for quite awhile. This beer is not crazy sour at all, it is a very subtle sour with great cherry notes (I would rate it a 4/10 on the sour scale). Not quite sure where to put this, but this beer is a bit lower in alc content then some of the other "wild ales" Allagash does. I think this lower alc content really lets the cherry shine through. I think this is a wonderful example of brett and cherrys. Not quite the same thing, but I definitely prefer this beer to the Cerise (Allagash's take on a kriek). I think a big part of this is the much lower alc content. There is not alcohol heat here, just cherry and brett greatness.

If you can, get this beer!

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Photo of ThisWangsChung
4.49/5  rDev +4.7%
look: 2.75 | smell: 4.25 | taste: 4.75 | feel: 4.5 | overall: 4.75

12.7 oz bottle into a wine glass.

Appearance: Pours a hazy amber color, and I swear there are tinges of pink/red appearing. The head is a finger high, and white in shade. Retention, as expected, is pretty bad. Almost no lacing is left behind. (2.75)

Smell: No doubt, the brett hits my nose like a punch in the face. This is very barnyard-like, and slightly phenolic, as well. But letting it warm up will reveal plenty of rich cherry notes. It doesn't seem to be particularly tart-smelling, though again, it intensifies once this opens up some more. (4.25)

Taste: It's a little more sour than I anticipated, and initially seems very strong. And yet, it remains wonderfully restrained thanks to some cherry sweetness and augmenting funky characteristics. In addition, there are kisses of cinnamon, gingerbread, and butter. The cherry flavor seems too mild...really, though, it isn't. Though it requires some effort to unearth, it delights the palate once its found. I love how deep it is, I love how balanced it is...actually, I love everything about its flavor profile. (4.75)

Mouthfeel: Due to how boldly flavored it is, it isn't incredibly drinkable. Still, it's fairly light on the palate, with good carbonation willing this beer down effortlessly. It's one hell of a sipper, that's for damn sure. (4.5)

Overall: I'm not incredibly familiar with Allagash's sours (aside from Merveilleux), but given how good their main line is, I'm not surprised that this is wonderful. It's big and brash, yet somehow balanced and delicate at the same time. Beers like this just put me in a happy place, and make me wish I had a few more (let's say a dozen) bottles. (4.75)

4.49/5: One of the best sours I've ever had

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Photo of Smakawhat
4.12/5  rDev -4%
look: 4 | smell: 4.5 | taste: 4 | feel: 4 | overall: 4

Poured from the bottle into a stemless wine glass.

Deep apricot orange, with some cola sized carbonation sticking to the sides, and some fine lines as well. Settles to a fine thin collar with no head. Soapy off white head with snapping sounding carbonation, slowly fizzes out.

Great bouquet on this. Nice mellow cherries, and a soft malt body. Hints of funky tones and good acidity with a kriek like sensations. Real fruit cherry forward, practically juicy. Real nice. Even some hint of mint herbality as well.

Palate comes off a little more down to earth. Crisp palate with some lively but not too jarring, but a little distracting carbonation. Mellow tartness and quite simple. Fruit cherry angle seems to be lost and moving more to citrus and orange, with funky and tangy character. A bit of a light wet body, but flavors carry and meld nicely in the palate.

The carbonation level and malt body on this is a little lacking, but the fruit angle is superb. Still makes for a good brew.

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Photo of cbutova
4.45/5  rDev +3.7%
look: 4 | smell: 4.5 | taste: 4.5 | feel: 4.25 | overall: 4.5

On tap Sierra Grille, Northampton, MA. Had this out of the bottle once previous to this.

A- Hazed up golden orange body from the tap to the mini Allagash chalice. White head to a pinky with a frothy look falling to small ring after decent retention. Spotty lace sparsely decorates the glass.

S- Tart lactic lemony sours and funky barnyard microbes rise from the glass. Sour pie cherries, horse blanket barn, vinous wet oak, slight band aid and lemon juice.

T- Sour fruits are the driving point and main theme of the beer. The lactic acid from the microbes joins the sour cherry with very slight vinegar, vinous white grapes, green apple skin and lemons. Funk lays beneath this but is a necessary component adding complexity with horsey, straw, pasture and musty fruit notes.

MF- Just about fully dried out body with a certain effervescent feeling and a silky smooth slightly creamy texture. Carbonation on the high side promoting the massive flavors. Finishes sour.

FV13 and Nancy are two of the best sourd made on American soil. Flavors that you would be hard pressed to believe they dont come out of Brussels. Second time drinking this, wonderful.

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Photo of Pahn
4.38/5  rDev +2.1%
look: 4.25 | smell: 4.25 | taste: 4.25 | feel: 4.5 | overall: 4.75

12oz bottle into a red wine glass.

Appearance: Beautiful glowing orange that is either slightly red tinged or I'm having some sort of visual placebo effect. No head retention or lacing, but none expected really.

Smell: Funky and fresh, sort of like barnyard on a nice day--and you're not by the stables, you're in the garden where they grow the citrus fruit on the farm. Supremely pleasant... I really feel like it transports me somewhere outdoors, late afternoon, cool breeze blowing, lots of light aromas in the air but nothing jarring.

To be specific, slightly acetic, very citrusy, good amount of sweet cherry, and a mix of mineraly/airy aroma that's hard to describe but contributes to the florid bullshit I said in the previous paragraph. Tangy but not dirty brett.

Taste: Even more subtle and pleasant than the aroma: nice cherry undercurrent, just tart enough to remind you that beer can be both sour and good. Puckering in a lemon/grapefruit way, which boosts the faint citrus flavors in the beer. Through the backend you can really pick up some lactic sourness, with a full creamy mouthfeel intruding on the overall tart juiciness. Lingering sour prickliness.

This is a fine wild ale, showing both restraint and straightforward flavor (subtle brett and bugs, direct, pronounced cherry that still isn't dominating or distracting). True to Allagash's roots and tradition, this is like the best of Belgium's strong pale ales or saisons: there's stuff happening here, but it's happening such that you're invited to relax and explore it. You take a long sip, sit back, and enjoy all the graceful flavor, focusing on whatever you wish.

Mouthfeel: Medium bodied. Juicy and tart with a lactic creaminess at the end. Not particularly dry, and not even that sour, just some lingering sharpness.

Overall: This is a beautiful beer. It tastes like something some old master craftsman family has been making and perfecting for generations. Not as adventurous as Russian River's standbys, and certainly nowhere near the expansive complexity of Cantillion and Drie Fonteinen, but for my taste maybe more enjoyable than all of those. Drinking it is almost peaceful.

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Photo of UCLABrewN84
3.96/5  rDev -7.7%
look: 3.25 | smell: 4 | taste: 4 | feel: 4 | overall: 4

Bottle pour at Shelton Brothers The Festival 2014 held at Crafted in San Pedro, CA.

Date bottled: 7/10/14.

Pours a clear orange with a foamy beige head that settles to wisps of film on top of the beer. Small dots of lace form slowly drip into the remaining on the drink down. Smell is sour with malt, grain, cherry, and acidic aromas. Taste is much the same with sour grain, cherry, and acidic flavors on the finish. There is a mild amount of acidity on the palate with each sip. This beer has a good level of carbonation with a crisp mouthfeel. Overall, this is a good beer with nice sour cherry characteristics all around.

Serving type: bottle.

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Photo of mkh012
4.03/5  rDev -6.1%
look: 4.5 | smell: 4 | taste: 4 | feel: 4 | overall: 4

12 oz. bottle poured into a tulip. Salmon pink and reddish-orange. A beautiful beer. Very short-lived head. Lively carbonation is visible.

Lemon, cherry, lime, cranberry, and breadcrust.

Pretty sour. Lip-puckering. Maybe a bit much for the uninitiated. The finish, though, is smooth and bready. Cherry is apparent only on the aftertaste.

Not a sour guy, but this is clearly well-crafted. It grew on me.

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Photo of Beerzebub
4.5/5  rDev +4.9%
look: 4.5 | smell: 4.5 | taste: 4.5 | feel: 4.5 | overall: 4.5

Bottled July 18, 2014. Attractive bright golden hue. Nice natural/wild cherry aroma, along with a good dose of Brett - including the kind that just barely borders on dumpster, in a good way (like Orval). Some good complexity, along the lines of old wine/barrel/cellar, earth, and dried leaves. Similar on the palate, tasty, balanced and characterful, with good acidity, overt but restrained cherry and old barrel flavors, and general funky complexity. Extremely fine bubbles, cushy and smooth. Nice!

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Photo of joe1510
4.19/5  rDev -2.3%
look: 4.25 | smell: 4 | taste: 4.25 | feel: 4.25 | overall: 4.25

Maria's Package Store - Chicago

Bottled: 7/18/14

Nancy is burnished golden and absolutely glowing. A few sunset orange highlights flash along the sides of the glass. The foam is produced at once, rising to a couple fingers in height, while crackling and loud. It fizzles and fades fairly quickly but to no smaller than a finger in height and that's bolstered by geysers of bubbles rushing to the surface from different points of the glass. Peaked lacing remains after each drink.

The nose is complex and mature. Allagash knows when to release their product. Wet straw and a little barnyard funk are first from the glass, a little manure-y. Soft doughy malts run the periphery The cherries are oddly faint although there is a sweetness that my mind associates with cherries. Placebo effect? Possibly. Cherries do open slightly with some warming adding both a sweet and sour quality. A deep pull brings some nutmeg spice. This beer seems to morph each time my nose enters the glass. It'll keep you on your toes. I like that.

The cherries are certainly noticeable in the flavor but before I get ahead of myself... The brett is well integrated throughout with a combination farm funk, damp hay, and mustiness throughout, rising and falling. Cherries have a great play between sweet and sour with sour eventually taking over and finishing. Bready malts run front to back but stay neutral letting the brett and cherries shine. This is a damn good, ever evolving beer!

A lively, yet soft, carbonation is brazen enough to get the tongue tingling and the tartness from the cherries adds to the sensation. The bubbles are alive enough that I'd call this beer frothy. Tartness digs at the edges of the tongue and leaves me immediately wanting another drink after the last. Immensely drinkable and refreshing.

Nancy is yet another well produced, well aged beer from the folks at Allagash. I expect nothing less from them these days. It's complex, bright, mature and ready to drink right this second. If I see more I will own them, I suggest you do the same.

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Photo of avalon07
4.36/5  rDev +1.6%
look: 4.25 | smell: 4.5 | taste: 4.25 | feel: 4.75 | overall: 4.25

A: Poured from a bottle to a tulip glass. Had a copper color and a hazy texture. There was an inch of foamy, long-lasting head. Decent lacing.

S: A strong aroma of cherries, citrus, and a funky quality.

T: Tasted, of course, predominantly of cherries - very tart, a little sour and somewhat sweet. There were also traces of citrus (lemon), light malt, and brett funk. A vibrant, complex, light, and enjoyable flavor.

M: A highly carbonated beer with a sharp, prickly finish. Medium-bodied.

O: If you like cherries, this is one you should try. Lively, well made and drinkable.

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Photo of hopswap1
4.25/5  rDev -0.9%

Photo of jgeddis
4.75/5  rDev +10.7%
look: 4.75 | smell: 4.75 | taste: 4.75 | feel: 4.75 | overall: 4.75

Photo of BARFLYB
4.25/5  rDev -0.9%

Photo of mkirkland80
4.75/5  rDev +10.7%

Photo of Ksyrium
4.5/5  rDev +4.9%

Photo of Goblinmunkey7
3.99/5  rDev -7%
look: 3.75 | smell: 4 | taste: 4.25 | feel: 3 | overall: 4

Appearance: A slight chill haze on a deep peachy-orange color. Small loose bubbly white head appears and disappears almost instantly. Leaves no cap or collar. No lacing. Moderate carbonation on the pour. It glows under the softest light.

Smell: Typical Allagash barrel funk. Oak pushes hard with a deep woody element. Loaded with cherry. Tart cherry skin and flesh. Fresh pressed cherry juice. Black cherry. A sweeter ripe cherry flesh as well. Increases the cherry as it warms. Mild lactic tart edge. Soft powdery yeast edge. Tannic, but only a touch. Some mildly sweet and slightly bready pale malts run through the back. Some lemon and lime as well.

Taste: Oaked cherry flesh. Solid oak presence with a ton of cherry. Runs the gamut. Tart and sweet. Cherry flesh, skin, and juice. Sharp citric bite gives way to a clean lactic finish with some lemon and lime zest thrown in. Malts are incredibly light offering a touch of sweetness and a very mild bready element. Cherry rides nice and clean over the top and ramps up a bit with each sip. Typical blend of Allagash barrel and general funky. Slight damp element with some mild nutty elements and, as always, rich oak. Flavor flashes on the tongue but doesn't linger...outside of the cherry.

Mouthfeel: Light slightly thin body with minimal carbonation. Astringent without being dry.

Overall: Appreciate your women.

It's Allagash with fruit and sour. That works for me. Body could use a bit more, but that's the worst of it.

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Photo of zach60614
4/5  rDev -6.8%

Photo of M_chav
4.29/5  rDev 0%
look: 5 | smell: 4 | taste: 4.25 | feel: 4.25 | overall: 4.5

Photo of nmann08
3.93/5  rDev -8.4%
look: 4 | smell: 4 | taste: 3.75 | feel: 4.25 | overall: 4

Photo of beernads
4/5  rDev -6.8%

Photo of sugarman
4.75/5  rDev +10.7%

Photo of TWStandley
4.35/5  rDev +1.4%
look: 4.25 | smell: 4.25 | taste: 4.5 | feel: 4.25 | overall: 4.25

Photo of jschott75
4.25/5  rDev -0.9%
look: 4.25 | smell: 4.25 | taste: 4.25 | feel: 4.25 | overall: 4.25

Photo of Petegrieco
4.25/5  rDev -0.9%

Nancy from Allagash Brewing Company
Beer rating: 95 out of 100 with 723 ratings