Allagash Interlude | Allagash Brewing Company

449 Reviews
Allagash InterludeAllagash Interlude

Brewed by:
Allagash Brewing Company
Maine, United States

Style: Saison / Farmhouse Ale

Alcohol by volume (ABV): 9.50%

Availability: Rotating

Notes / Commercial Description:
Two yeast strains were used to create this unique 9.5% ABV Belgian style ale. The first, a Belgian farmhouse yeast, establishes the flavor foundations of a classic Belgian-style ale. The second, a house strain of Brettanomyces yeast, brings it to the next level contributing an intriguing myriad of flavors including pear, apricot, graham cracker, and bread crust. Finally, a portion of the Interlude is aged in French Merlot and Sirah oak barrels, which impart a distinctive vinous plum character and a drying, almost tannic finish.

Added by brewandbbq on 01-15-2006

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Reviews: 449 | Ratings: 1,383
Photo of seedyone
1.5/5  rDev -64.2%

03/29/13 At Rattle N Hum on tap. Strangest assault on the ol' taste buds in a long time. Not sure what they were going for here as much as "let's just throw some stuff down the chute & see what comes out". IMHO this is an aimless taste profile. Befuddling at best. If it wasn't that I paid for it & the 9.5% ABV, I would have poured it on the floor as a wax remover. The only "notes" I'm registering are "don't waste your time & money on this focus-less nonsense".

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Photo of claspada
2.4/5  rDev -42.7%
look: 3 | smell: 3 | taste: 2 | feel: 2 | overall: 2.5

2010 version bottled in September according to the bottle.

Pours a clear, coppery body with a medium-sized, ivory-colored head. Little to no lacing present after the head recedes.

Aroma begin with an overwhelmingly dominant Brett smells; funk and hay with a dailed up musk factor and old, tired oak vessels with a lesser note of sour apple.

The tastes begin with light pilsner maltiness and a syrupy sugar sweetness get quickly dislodged by a powerful tangy tartness and coarse astringent tannins. Splash of sour apple vinegar. Slight notes of white grapes and a touch of sour-tasting wheat malt and more Brett yeast flavors with a small hint of booze. Oaky finish with a slap of acidity and chock full of tannins.

The mouthfeel is a hair above medium-bodied with medium to low carbonation. Quite the tongue-coating mouthfeel with an unpleasant overly astringent, unbalanced finish.

Overall I really did not enjoy this sour ale from Allagash. In fact I think this is probably the least enjoyable sour ale I have ever had. I found it to be overly tart, sharply so, and a bit heavy on the oak. For me, this left the overall taste to be rather disjointed, with nothing really coming together for me. There were no wine barrel flavors and the acidic, tangy flavors were just too disjointed and left me wanting so so much more.

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Photo of KeefD
2.47/5  rDev -41.1%
look: 4.5 | smell: 2.5 | taste: 2 | feel: 4 | overall: 2

Review from tasting notes taken last night:

Pours a dark amber orange color with a medium white head, and light lace. I have to say that I reall y loved the color of this beer, but that's where the love affair ended for me. Light berry notes on the nose, grassy, heavy mustiness and little to no sourness. Flavor is unripened berry, really no sweetness or tartness in this one, just sort of a muddled funk of a brew, musty, earthy, some funky cheese at times. Where is the sour on this one?? This brew really needs some bugs in here to make things shine. This is too Brett-forward, and the funkiness needs to be offset by some sweetness or sourness or both. Dry finish translates into a dry beer overall, but without the tartness to balance things out. Not really what I was expecting out of this brew. Too much Brett funk and not enough sour and I'm not really a fan of these type of wilds. Reminds me of the mediocrity that was Perseguidor 5.

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Photo of crusian
2.63/5  rDev -37.2%
look: 4 | smell: 3.5 | taste: 2 | feel: 3.5 | overall: 2

bottle from some shop in Atlanta.
pours a burnt amber color with about 1 finger of head. The cork popped hard, so i expected it to foam everywhere and pour with a ton of head, but was surprised.
smells sour mainly, with a bit of cherry underneath. not the best smelling sour I have had, but not too bad.
Taste is bret sour, a bit, but the main flavor I have is merlot... a dark red wine. It also has that dry red wine finish. The more I drink it the more the sour fades and the merlot comes through. I really wish this was more sour. the nose lets you think it is crazy sour, but the taste is disappointing if that was what you were looking for. The more I dig into this, the more I dislike it. If you are a Merlot fan, this is for you. if you dont like red wine, like me, dont buy this.

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Photo of nrbw23
2.73/5  rDev -34.8%
look: 3.5 | smell: 3 | taste: 2.5 | feel: 3 | overall: 2.5

A- Quite a bit of foam blasted out of the top of this one. Pours a golden yellow color with just a handful of bubbles on top. These bubbles stayed the whole time and left no lacing.

S- A lot of funkiness going on here, brett all over, tart, a touch of wood, bread and yeast.

T- Pretty sour over all. Yeasty spices, brett, touch of vinegar and green apples.

M- Light in body with a nice amount of carbonation.

O- This was a 2007 vinetage, which I thought was pretty cool, but these wilds I think are just my thing. I think this one is just too sour, but some BA's will clearly love this one. If I had access to another I'd split for sure no way I could handle this dude myself.

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Photo of MbpBugeye
3.03/5  rDev -27.7%
look: 3.5 | smell: 3 | taste: 3 | feel: 3 | overall: 3

January 07 vintage shared by cabgoddess at a tasting.

A bit of gushing, but it looked pretty controllable. More of a slow stream of growing foam, but nothing a couple pours couldn't keep at bay. There was a big pillow of foam left in the bottom of the bottle at the end though. Strangely my pour barely had a head, at least not one that had any longevity to it. The color was very nice though. It was a deep, raw honey yellow.

Quite funky with notes of old dry oak. I wasn't aware of the use of wine barrels but I wasn't getting notes of grape or wine anyway. The oak was coming through pretty strongly though. There is clearly lots of Brett being utilized in this beer.

Lots of dusty Brett, its very yeasty and gritty. Old dried out oak, sawdust and hay dust flavors with a slight twinge of unripe fruits trying to provide some tartness.

Pretty light bodied with a very spritzy carbonation that pokes and prods the tongue. Finish is dry and gritty.

Maybe this beer is past its prime because the brett has really taken hold here. Its by far and away the dominate flavor and aroma. I can't get any notes from the wine because of it.

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Photo of ChainGangGuy
3.06/5  rDev -27%
look: 4 | smell: 3 | taste: 3 | feel: 3 | overall: 3

Appearance: Pours a clear, coppery body with a medium-sized, ivory-colored head.

Smell: Aroma dominated by Brett with a dailed up musk factor and old, tired oak vessels with a lesser note of sour apple.

Taste: Some malts and a syrupy sugar sweetness get quickly dislodged by a powerful tangy tartness and coarse astringent tannins. Splash of sour apple vinegar. Slight vinousnicity. Touch of sour-tasting yeast, a small hint of booze. Oaky finish with a slap of acidity and chock full of tannins. Argh!

Mouthfeel: A hair above medium-bodied. Medium carbonation. Quite the tongue-coating mouthfeel.

Drinkability: Here's my problem, I found it to be overly tart, sharply so, and a bit heavy on the oak. For me, this left the overall taste to be rather disjointed, with nothing really coming together for me.

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Photo of Cresant
3.11/5  rDev -25.8%
look: 3.5 | smell: 2.5 | taste: 3 | feel: 4 | overall: 3.5

Poured this 750 mL brown bottle into a Tripel Karmeliet glass. 2006 vintage. The body was apricot hued with a good deal of cloudiness. Two fingers of cream colored head descended to a ring and island.

Smell was faint. Somewhat acrid and tart.

Taste was chaulky, fruity, spicy. Wood/oak notes really shine. Drying finish. Well hidden alcohol. Easy to drink.

Mouthfeel was effervescent and mouth-filling. Medium to full bodied. Overall a little underwhelming, I hoped for a little more.

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Photo of kiya
3.16/5  rDev -24.6%
look: 3 | smell: 2 | taste: 3.5 | feel: 3 | overall: 4

January 2007 Vintage 750ML...

Pours a tall but airy head filled with bubbles so large you can hear the head dissipate. A nice golden dark peach color with a small bit of head retention that leaves no trace.

Scents are difficult to distinguish as it's light on the nose.. sour berries and tangy candies come through as it comes up to room temperature.
I take a sip and the carbonation is too intense to get a good idea what as to what i'm tasting.. An anise seed flavor attacks then gives way to a barn back. I let it sit for a few minutes then go at it again hoping for more. I'm met with a slightly more musty version of the first experience, with more of a roasted malt flavor.
Mouthfeel on this is disappointing, the carb is too strong and makes it difficult to pinpoint what flavors i'm tasting.
It's drinkable, but not in the best way, especially considering the price of a bottle.

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Photo of Sixpoint
3.21/5  rDev -23.4%
look: 2.5 | smell: 4 | taste: 3 | feel: 3 | overall: 3

2007 vintage.

Beer surprisingly flat upon pour; don't know if that was intended or not, but all remnants of a head have dissipated after 5 minutes in my glass.

Smell is promising - candied fruit, honey, and slighty goatyness promising a little Brett funk action.

Warming tones with vanilla start in the flavor, dry green apple finish with a heavy dose of diacytel butterscotch.

Noticeably absent in the mouthfeel; carbonation is lacking and texture is lost.

Overall, definitely not my cup of tea, and in my humble opinion, they make much better varieties. This 2007 sample I had missed the mark.

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Photo of kbm
3.28/5  rDev -21.7%
look: 4 | smell: 3.5 | taste: 3 | feel: 4 | overall: 3

Jan. 2007 vintage.

Appearance: Pours hazy amber. Nice moderate head with slow dissipation that leaves behind a thin layer of head. Moderate lacing.

Smell: Oak, white wine, orange peels. Wild yeast in the background.

Taste: The oak and wine are the main guests at the party. This is pretty sour and dry but there's something off with the sourness in my opinion. There's a little funk/horse blanket but it's not working with one of the other flavors. It may be the latent sourness of the wine.. kind of like a bottle of white wine that's been open for a little too long. The after taste is stale sourness that sticks to the back and sides of my tongue.

Mouthfeel: Sharp carbonation with a thin to mildly buttery mouthfeel.

Ddrinkability: I'm having a hard time with this one. The old wine flavors don't really invite me to take another sip.

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Photo of schlimenhaumer
3.31/5  rDev -21%
look: 4.5 | smell: 3.5 | taste: 3 | feel: 3 | overall: 3.5

Poured from a 1 pint 9.4 fl. oz. bottle (August 2008) into a "Belgian Independence Day" tulip at high altitude near Denver. A big thanks to kojevergas for this one!

A: Pours a hazy amber color with plenty of yeast sediment floating around. Three-finger prickly off-white head fades rather quickly, but a substantial cap remains for quite some time considering the ABV.

S: This one had a relatively strong smell straight out of the bottle. The sour yeast notes come out first along with dark fruits. There are also plenty of sweet notes here that remind me of fresh tropical fruits or citrus.

T: Dark fruit comes out first, followed by the sweet tropical fruit notes from the nose. Plenty of yeast flavors here, but surprisingly, the sourness doesn't come through very much at all. I was also surprised to see that this one was aged in oak barrels -- that certainly didn't come through in the flavor, either.

M: Medium-bodied with a slightly dry finish, but undercarbonated.

O: This one certainly shouldn't be classified as an American Wild Ale. I enjoy the flavors and the mouthfeel suits them well, but my expectations were skewed. That said, it hides its alcohol very well. Pretty enjoyable, but I wouldn't have it again, especially given the price.

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Photo of q33jeff
3.32/5  rDev -20.8%
look: 3 | smell: 3.5 | taste: 3.25 | feel: 3.5 | overall: 3.25

On Tap at Blend. Yellow Orange with a Big White head. Aroma is citrus, orange, yeast. A little wang. Taste has more Wang, but no too much. Pretty good, but not my style.

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Photo of ptykozoon
3.34/5  rDev -20.3%
look: 3 | smell: 3.25 | taste: 3.25 | feel: 3.25 | overall: 3.75

Amber, hazy apricot. No head and spotty lacing. A distinct lack of head.

Oak, olive juice, smell is distinct but very subtle.

Vermouth, bitter, martini. Red wine. Light sour. Floral and earthy.

Light mouthfeel, light sour. Dry.

Not bad.

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Photo of kojevergas
3.35/5  rDev -20%
look: 4 | smell: 4 | taste: 3 | feel: 2.5 | overall: 3.5

Allagash Interlude August 2008 vintage. 750ml brown glass bottle with hood and wire cap over a cork served into an EKU 28 snifter in me friend's gaff in high altitude Castle Rock, Colorado. Expectations are extremely high; I love sours and I love Allagash. Acquired at Red Carpet Wine in Glendale, California. No best before date.

Served a bit cooler than room temperature and allowed to warm over the course of consumption. Side-poured with very little vigor as I didn't want to punish it too much.

Not paired with food.

Cork pops out nice and loud, suggesting good carbonation even after four years.

A: Pours a 2.5 finger beige colour head - fairly thin - with some fair cream and good overall retention. Poor lacing. Colour is a vibrant but nontransparent fig-amber with orange hues. It's a tough colour to nail down. Floating yeast particles are visible. No bubble show. It's got a good colour to it; I'm looking forward to trying it.

Sm: Fig, orange (not orange peel), biscuity yeast, wild yeast, bacteria, bretts, hints of mango, tropical fruit esters - likely from the background subtle hops, some floral character (also likely from the hops), and fruity sugars. It's nicely subtle all around, certainly a sweet quality. Tropical yet very fresh. Some clean unobtrusive malts. Some booze might break through a bit there at the end; I'll see in the taste. The aroma does get stronger as it warms.

T: Fruit is what I notice first - orange peel, orange, and perhaps mango. Some clove. I'm shocked at how restrained the sourness seems. It's not horribly yeasty. I'm curious which brett strain was used; it walks a fine line between sour and funky - but invests seriously in neither. This is somewhat disappointing. Not as full bodied as it needs to be. Malts are clean and unobtrusive. Biscuity yeast does come through, but not as much as anticipated (or wanted). It has some subtlety, but does feel pretty simple for a sour from Allagash. I have to admit I expected better. No oak comes through. Maybe some white wine hints. The floral character from the hops is nice. It definitely needs more fig and more of the dark fruit promise that was present on the aroma. I do like it.

Mf: Undercarbonated. Smooth and wet. I'd like more crispness. It's just too damned thin to support the flavours. Pretty light on the palate.

Dr: I expected a phenomenal sour, and that isn't what I got. It's rather pricey for what it is. It hides its ABV extraordinarily well, but I'd sooner take a more affordable sour; I'm looking forward to the Supplication I'm drinking next. It's drinkable and I like it, but it just isn't world class. A decent offering from Allagash, but nowhere near the quality suggested by the hype. Maybe the four years of aging reduced the quality. In any case I won't be getting it again.

This tastes more like a farmhouse ale or a saison than a true sour or wild ale.

Low B-

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Photo of PDXHops
3.36/5  rDev -19.8%
look: 2 | smell: 3.5 | taste: 3.5 | feel: 3 | overall: 3.5

2008 vintage on-tap, served in a tulip. See-thru amberish orange topped with only a wisp of foam that's gone in a flash. Zero lacing. Looks like a tulipful of tea.

It could be the lack of head, but the nose isn't particularly powerful. Light sour fruit notes- green apples, green grapes, cherry and whatnot- and a bit of barnyard.

I'm a bit surprised that the brett presence isn't stronger after 2 years (make that pleasantly surprised, as it seems most brewers that use it tend to do so in an overly heavy-handed fashion). There's a flash of it up front, but it fades significantly by midswallow. caught up in the mildly tart fruitiness. Defintely more tart than sour, and there's a fair amount of candi sugar sweetness that balances it out. Seems there's a touch of nuttiness along with the musty oak. Medium-bodied with a fairly smooth feel and modest carbonation. Kinda boozy.

Overall impression: Not the most complex wild ale you'll find, but well worth a shot.

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Photo of jrallen34
3.41/5  rDev -18.6%
look: 4.5 | smell: 3.5 | taste: 3.5 | feel: 3 | overall: 3

I drank this 2009 batch from the 22oz bottle into a Rochefort glass.

This beer is a bright dark orange that is a really nice color with a light white head that is about a finger high but has bad retention. Ok lacing.

The aroma is sour but its not a pleasant sour its kind of piney and bitter. The taste is very similar to the aroma, sour with a bit to much bitter and pine.

The feel is ok, not totally drinkable.

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Photo of chinchill
3.42/5  rDev -18.4%
look: 4 | smell: 3.25 | taste: 3.5 | feel: 3.5 | overall: 3.25

On tap at the Community Tap (SC).

Flavor & Aroma: Plenty of red wine flavors with oak too. These also permeate the aroma where hints of barnyard smells detract.
Bottle in April 2016 cpfirms tasting

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Photo of jwjon1
3.43/5  rDev -18.1%
look: 4.5 | smell: 4 | taste: 3 | feel: 4 | overall: 3

2008 Batch. CCRIDA's review nailed it. Wine barrel aged, brett-ridden beers can be heavenly. For my palate, this falls short. I was hoping for a vinous delight, but there was no trace of wine-like qualities to be found save for wood tannin. An acidic backbone would help, and would make this a much more enjoyable quaff.

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Photo of ccrida
3.43/5  rDev -18.1%
look: 4 | smell: 3.5 | taste: 3.5 | feel: 3.5 | overall: 3

Dec 2007 bottle, a whopping $25, at By the Bottle in Vancouver. Poured into my new Lost Abbey goblet, Interlude is a clear rusty amber, with a tight bubbled off-white head kept alive by a steady stream of lazy bubbles, leaving nice lace. This is my 700th review, and I haven't had anything special for the last few arbitrary whole number milestones, but I figured now is as good a time as any to bust this expensive bugger out. Of course, expectations are sky high, based on both the price and the potential for the style - I love funky, barrel aged Belgians, and Saison is my favorite style. As it turns out, this one falls way short on both accounts....

Smell is pretty soft, even after letting it warm from about 45-65F. Vinous and a bit acidic, a little sweet, like a Flander's Red, with hints of cherry and booze.

Taste is not like a Flander's Red - the brett merely provides a sharp, horsey bite on the finish that leaves a lingering aftertaste. There is some nutty, caramel malt sweetness, and a touch of plastic phenols and slight chalkiness on the finish, which is tannic. A little fusely, especially at 9 months old. No overt fruit, must have been the malt and/or esters on the nose, it's actually pretty bland over all, like generic wine with a musty bite. Only it's priced like a good wine, which is really outrageous, and leaves me feeling like I wasted my money. I'd be interested to see if this develops more depth with a couple years under it's belt, but at $25 a pop, I can't justify the experiment - especially when it's nothing special to begin with, and can just as likely getter worse.

Mouthfeel is thicker, a little syrupy, a wine like viscosity like sugary blush.

Drinkability isn't that hot, cramped by the outrageous price it was even harder to enjoy then had I only paid $10 for it, which is certainly a fair price compared to many of the other brett beers being put out by US craft brewers. But to charge what they do, they need to be offering a masterpiece, not a test batch.

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Photo of jaluria
3.47/5  rDev -17.2%
look: 3.5 | smell: 4 | taste: 3 | feel: 4 | overall: 3.5

Appeared a yellow-hay color with a big frothy white head. Semi-murky with some nice lacing left behind. Aromas of yeast, pines, honey, and passion fruit; very interesting. The taste was bold with brett flavors working seemlessly with unique fruits. Clean and a touch of spice. Very flavorful and exciting with so many things going on. An excellent beer.

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Photo of jmarsh123
3.48/5  rDev -16.9%
look: 3.5 | smell: 3 | taste: 3.5 | feel: 4.5 | overall: 3.5

Pours hazy light red with a few bubbles of white head that fades immediately. Slight lacing. I'll also mention here, this was the worst bottle ever as far as uncorking. Took forever, then broke and stuck to the sides of the bottle. Ended up having to push the cork into the bottle to have access and had to filter out cork all glass long.

Aroma features lots of brett with some lemon and spices. Getting almost no wine barrel charcter from the aroma.

Very bretty and fruity up front. Apple and lemon with a heavy brett funk and a bit of oak and spice at the end. I really didn't like this one at all when first opened, but as it approached room temp, some more flavors came together and was actually quite enjoyable by the end. I could use more wine barrel presence and felt it was very lacking. This is more funky than sour as it approached only "tart" in a liberal definition.

Medium mouthfeel. Reached a good creamy texture approaching room temp with a crisp finish from the carbonation. Finishes oaky and dry leaving a good aftertaste.

I had some issues with this beer, but in the end, once it approached room temperature it was a very nice beer although I still feel the wine character was lacking. I'd definitely drink this again after letting it warm, but probably won't go out of my way to get a bottle.

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Photo of jwinship83
3.48/5  rDev -16.9%
look: 4 | smell: 3.5 | taste: 3.5 | feel: 4 | overall: 3

allagash interlude from december 2009. drank out of my hennepin glass (closest i had to the picture on the bottle).

A- this one pours out of the bottle a somewhat hazy copperish colored body with a small off-white colored head on top. the head takes its time falling and leaves behind complete rings of lacing. nice.

S- the main attraction in the nose seems to be musty brett. other than that i get some minor notes of vanilla form the barrel as well as some green apple skin. a little bit of spicy pepper and light sourness finish this one off.

T- the taste is once again dominated by musty brett. the sourness i could smell comes through just as faintly. there is some vanilla, as well as some minor fruit (grapes mostly but granny smith apples and lemons as well) notes. the alcohol shows its head a little. as does some pepper like spiciness.

M- the body is light, bordering on medium. the carbonation is the expected high level for the style. there is a moderate warming form the alcohol.

D- i liked this beer, but there are certainly better examples of the style. i feel its a little pricey at $22 a bottle. maybe the other bottle i picked up will be better in another year or so. i dont think ill be reaching for this one again anytime soon, nor will i be tempted to pick up another.

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Photo of jbertsch
3.49/5  rDev -16.7%
look: 3.25 | smell: 3.5 | taste: 3.5 | feel: 3.5 | overall: 3.5

Ruby red in color. The aroma is a mix of wine barrel tartness, slightly foul funk, and some fruits underneath like cherry, apple, and apricot. The foul funk toes the line of "bad" territory but without ever getting there. However, it's noticeable on each sip and makes you at least wonder if something is off. I don't think it's just a more challenging note beyond the usual barnyard essence from the brett. The flavor a mix of tartness, funkiness, cherry, apricot and bread. Mouthfeel is average. Not heavy but not too think.

A decent beer. But I can't help but feel there's significant room for improvement. Ultimately the $23 price tag renders this beer not worth the money (at least not for repeat purchases).

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Photo of lhaqq
3.5/5  rDev -16.5%
look: 3 | smell: 3 | taste: 3.5 | feel: 3 | overall: 4.5

A: Clear copper reddish body, not much of a head.
S: Cherries, white wine or maybe a rosé, some wood and maltiness.
T: Not my favorite for a sour, a bit too sweet and syrupy. A good amount of cherry and malt. Some apple sourness and apple-core bitterness.
M: A little thin but fine.
D: Quite an easy to drink wild ale, but probably wouldn't get it again. As a beer, good, but as a wild ale, nothing special.

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Allagash Interlude from Allagash Brewing Company
4.19 out of 5 based on 1,383 ratings.
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