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Allagash Confluence Ale | Allagash Brewing Company

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256 Reviews
Allagash Confluence AleAllagash Confluence Ale

Brewed by:
Allagash Brewing Company
Maine, United States

Style: Belgian Strong Pale Ale

Alcohol by volume (ABV): 7.50%

Availability: Rotating

Notes / Commercial Description:
Allagash Confluence Ale is created with a mixed fermentation; utilizing our house primary Belgian style yeast in combination with our proprietary Brettanomyces strain. The two yeast strains work in tandem creating a marriage between spice and fruit flavors that ultimately leave a lingering silky mouth feel. Confluence is brewed with a blend of both imported pilsner and domestic pale malts as well as a portion of caramel malt, resulting in a complex malty profile. Tettnang and East Kent Golding hops are added in the brew process to balance the intricate malty profile while adding a sweet and spicy citrus aroma. After fermentation, Confluence undergoes a lengthy aging process in stainless steel tanks to enhance the flavors. Prior to bottling, it is dry hopped with a Glacier hops, providing a pleasant balance of aromas.

Added by ClockworkOrange on 01-14-2009

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Reviews: 256 | Ratings: 916
Photo of soupyman10
4.27/5  rDev +6%
look: 4 | smell: 4.5 | taste: 4 | feel: 4.5 | overall: 4.5

Grabbed this one in celebration of my buying my first home. A great brew, although not quite as outstanding as most of Allagash's "big" brews. This one was kind of your straightforward sour and tart flavors that you get in a Wild "funky" brew, with some fairly consistent yeast and milder hop flavors, with some occasional fruity orange/citrus. Again, not bad, but in no way as impressive as a lot of Allagash's, or even their comparable Interlude.

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Photo of fear025
3.65/5  rDev -9.4%
look: 3.5 | smell: 3.5 | taste: 4 | feel: 3 | overall: 3.5

On tap at the Bavarian Lodge in Lisle, IL.

Aroma:Sour lemon and bubblegum notes.

Appearance:Light gold in color. Very little head. Good lacing.

Taste:The first taste is sour with funky brett flavors up front and in your face. Behind this taste, the hops start to come through. After a few sips, through the mid and aftertaste, the floral aspects of this beer are much more noticeable.

Mouthfeel:Light body, slightly harsh mouthfeel.

Drinkability:This is a well balanced beer with brett flavors intact, but still mild enough that delicate floral flavors are still there.

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Photo of drpimento
4.78/5  rDev +18.6%
look: 5 | smell: 4.5 | taste: 5 | feel: 5 | overall: 4.5

Man, really good beer. These folks know what they're doing. Poured with a huge, foamy, frothy, rocky, off-white head that lasts a long time and lots of lace. Color is a clear, slightly pale amber. Aroma is full and of yeast, barnyard, spice, hops, malt, fresh cut grass. Flavor is similar to nose and has a slightly sweet background upon which are the tart and bitter flavors are evidenced. Body is excellent - in the way that is best for this style, not too thick yet not thin with champagne-like carbonation. The finish is like flavor and where I notice the characteristics of the Brett which nicely complements the beer. Finish is fairly long. Satisfying, good drinking beer. I'd defy someone blindfolded to say this isn't Belgian. Kudos to Allagash brewmasters; a hearty well done!

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Photo of Ryan011235
3.75/5  rDev -6.9%
look: 4 | smell: 4 | taste: 3.5 | feel: 3.5 | overall: 4

Poured into a snifter (1st pour) & a tulip (2nd pour) on 8/3/10

January 2009

Bright, glowing golden hue; a very pretty color. Doesn't look very cloudy, just has a nice depth to it. Carbonation is vigorous resulting in two fingers of lightly seated bubbles of foam. The head has dropped to 1/8th inch; swirling does well to revive a solid layer. Decent retention. Nice swaths of lace all drip down with each sip. Lacing is better in the tulip.

The aroma is light & rather crisp. Floral & grassy tones drift about & intertwine with a moderate barnyard funk. Notes of hay & lemongrass. The cleaner aspects of the floral & grass notes make it seem more akin to a prairie, as the funk isn't overly pronounced. Better yet, possibly an orchard; wisps of tart apples abound. Hints of citrus zest, pear & a touch of pepper.

Ah, betrayed by the nose, Confluence actually tastes quite tart. Tangy notes of apple with pear & lively lemon zest. Kind of peppery & floral. Grassiness doesn't seem as notable as in the aroma. On the whole, what I presume to be Brett-induced funk is more restrained than I might expect. As it warms though, the funky flavors become more apparent, as the tartness subsides a bit. Though good, it never delivers on the complexity of the aroma.

Medium-light body with a penchant for crispness. Carbonation is pretty high. Initially it is extremely vigorous, though over time it does chill out a tad. Even still, it always remains active. Overall, it's dry. The beer finishes with an odd, almost waxy coating, which I find strange. Despite moderate abv, I suppose it could pass for numbing. Other than that, the finish is surprisingly clean.

Confluence Ale is an easy drinking Wild Ale, though it isn't quite seated in the upper-tier. Enjoyable, but for the price I'd be more inclined to check out Allagash's other beers before I drink this one again.

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

Brilliant golden color with fine white head
Aromas of honey funk (bee pollen?)
Super rich flavors of leeks and chestnuts
Very polished and almost no sour quality.

Honestly, I would have never guessed this was a bret beer.

Served in a flight with Oro de Calabaza and Ommegang Ommegeddon with grilled white shrimp with tomatillo-peach salsa

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Photo of Huhzubendah
4.42/5  rDev +9.7%
look: 4 | smell: 4.5 | taste: 4.5 | feel: 4 | overall: 4.5

This was on draft at Churchkey in D.C. a while back. I'm finally entering my back-logged reviews from my notebook.

A: This beer appears a hazy shade of yellow with a medium-sized head that leaves a fair amount of lacing as it recedes.

S: Apples, pears, white wine, yeast.

T: I really like this beer. It's not incredibly sour (I like incredibly sour), but a wild ale doesn't need to assault your cheeks with a sour bomb to have merit. All of the aspects listed in the aroma shine through nicely. The flavors are well integrated and flow together in nice harmony. Very tasty stuff.

M: Decent feel. I do wish it was slightly more sour.

D: Wonderfully smooth and quaffable. Effortless.

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Photo of Stigs
4/5  rDev -0.7%
look: 4.5 | smell: 4.5 | taste: 3.5 | feel: 4.5 | overall: 4

750ml of 2009 vintage, served in a Duvel tulip.

A - pours with a huge bubbly and pillowy head of white which seems to be barely creeping its way down the glass. the beer is musky, golden in color. spotty sticky lacing all over the glass.

S - very tart lemon, cherries, some basement mustiness...yeasty and lightly touched with the funk. earthy and woody at the end with some graininess.

T - begins with a strong grainy malt base which lingers through the end of the drink. some straw and hay "barnyard" tastes joined by Brett and lemon zest which is just ever so slightly sour.

M - light body with a super sharp, biting (and complimentary) amount of carbonation. lingering grains and a light bitterness.

D - one fine summer sipper, incredibly refreshing though i wish there was just a bit more going on in the flavor department as after the nose it was a bit of a let down.

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Photo of womencantsail
4.08/5  rDev +1.2%
look: 4.5 | smell: 4 | taste: 4 | feel: 4.5 | overall: 4

2009 Release

A: The cork shot out of the neck of the bottle as soon as I loosened the cage, but no sign of gushing at all. The pour is a nice, clear golden yellow color with a huge white head.

S: Lightly bretty and quite fruity on the nose. Lots of apples, pineapples, peaches, a bit of lemon zest and some floral hop notes.

T: The flavor is quite earthy with the same fruity sweetness displayed in the nose. Lots of apples, pears, and peaches along with a slight yeasty spice ester. The beer is quite dry on the finish.

M: Highly carbonated with a medium body and a dry finish, despite a decent amount of sweetness.

D: Not my favorite wild ale, but certainly a different take on the style (read: not sour). A good fruitiness which I really enjoyed.

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Photo of PittBeerGirl
4.42/5  rDev +9.7%
look: 4 | smell: 4.5 | taste: 4.5 | feel: 4 | overall: 4.5

2009 750ml sent to me in a BIF! Thanks!

A- Body is a nearly opaque golden yellow hue. Cloudiness is uniform. Pours with a massive, crazy 3 finger+ head-pretty much a gusher-but salvageable. Head fades to a nice foamy 1 finger or so and leaves a ton of lacing behind in the glass.

S- Nose is hoppy, funky, and very good overall. Lots of sour lemon, floral hops, spicy bready yeast, and some funk.

T- Flavor is very similar to the nose. There is a good balance between all these aspects described in the nose upfront. The floral hops intensify for the finish with some accompanying bitterness and some sour lemon lingers as well.

M- High carbonation with a light yet full body. Dry and spritzy with some yeast presence.

D- This is an awesome beer. Certainly wild and funky. A good member of the miscellaneous pale belgian category-but slightly wilder. Reminds me of a saison. Another wonderful allagash brew.

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Photo of TommyW
4.27/5  rDev +6%
look: 3.5 | smell: 4 | taste: 4.5 | feel: 4 | overall: 4.5

A- Thin, hazy gold body with a thin white head.

S- Fruity (like peaches and white grapes) with a slight earthy, wood note.

T- Fruity upfront, again reminds me of white grapes. Little horseblanket funk comes in from the brett, and a touch of earthy wood from the yeast. Overall, pretty dry; reminiscent of a dry white wine.

M- Silky feel with a low carbonation.

D- Really interesting beer; a great beer to sip on and enjoy all the interesting flavors going on.

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Photo of alpinebryant
3.83/5  rDev -5%
look: 4.5 | smell: 4 | taste: 3.5 | feel: 4 | overall: 4

Bottled Feb 2010

Poured an outstanding head of white fluffy pillow bubbles and a straw yellow that left respectable lacing.

Smell of horseblanket, pilsner malt and Oak.

Taste of strong oak, mild brett without a lot of tartness. Horseblanket flavor with grass and pilsner malts. Oaky flavors overpower the sourness that might have been present more had there been more age on this.

Medium bodied and pretty strong carbonation. Had to pour this within 5 seconds or feared it would gush a little bit.

Overall pretty good, a little on the expensive side, very similar to La Roja or some other JP brews I thought with oak predominantly taking over.

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Photo of david18
4.27/5  rDev +6%
look: 4 | smell: 4.5 | taste: 4 | feel: 4.5 | overall: 4.5

Wow! I had a glass of this as a part of tasting new beers at my local beer bar.. This one stood out from everything I tasted...and they were all belgians. It had a unique aroma, very refreshing while still being interesting. Flavor, again, great sourness without being difficult to drink. I can have numerous glasses of this beer.

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Photo of DavoleBomb
3.77/5  rDev -6.5%
look: 4 | smell: 4.5 | taste: 3.5 | feel: 3.5 | overall: 3.5

Had this on-tap at American Craft in Brookline today. Review from notes.

4.0 A: Hazy dark yellow. One finger of white head with decent retention and a good ring of lacing.

4.5 S: Brett and fruitiness team up to form a bubblegum aroma. Very strong and very nice.

3.5 T: A bit too mild for me. Brett funk is there, but subdued. Hay and grassy. Indistinguishable light fruits.

3.5 M: Medium body. Good carbonation but could be a lot creamier.

3.5 D: Not bad, but sort of run of the mill. The price, however, makes this a beer to avoid.

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Photo of cpetrone84
3.6/5  rDev -10.7%
look: 3.5 | smell: 3.5 | taste: 3.5 | feel: 3.5 | overall: 4

re-review 12/17/11
sweet, lemony, light bright in nose. Flavor is sweet and lemony. Strong hop in back and fairly bitter finish. Pretty good, balanced. A touch sweet and overly bitter in the finish .
Big thanks to Sarah for sharing this one! And we have a gusher, WARNING: The bottle cap shot out like an animal on this one.

A-pours a nice deep golden amber color with a good hazy center. the head is bubbly and white, very thin.

S-soft golden fruits up front of peaches, notes of lemon and a touch of brett with a light peppery spice in the back.

T-peaches and golden fruit up front, touch of lemon, brett comes in next with a good bit of spice behind, light grassy hop in the back with a hint of bitterness.

M-smooth and prickly on the back of the throat, very soft on the tongue, light carbonation with a lighter to medium body.

D-pretty tasty brew here, nice balance with a hint of hops in the back and a nice brett presence with delicious peach in there.

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Photo of TheManiacalOne
4.3/5  rDev +6.7%
look: 4 | smell: 4 | taste: 4.5 | feel: 4 | overall: 4.5

On-tap 6/22/10 at Rose Alley Ale House in New Bedford, MA, served in a small tulip glass.

A: The beer is a deep gold color, with a short white head that fades slowly and leaves a very thin lace on the glass.

S: The aroma is of tart fruit, caramelized malts, Belgian yeast and some spice.

T: The taste starts out bready with a hearty malt character and a strong Belgian yeast backbone. Then there are mildly sweet flavors of tart fruit and caramel than come in. The hops presence is very mild but the beer still has a good balance. The after-taste is slightly bready.

M: Crisp and very smooth, medium-to-heavy body, medium carbonation, finish is slightly sticky.

D: Very tasty, goes down very easily, slightly filling, good kick, good representation of style, it's a little heavier than most that I've had in the style but there's enough complexity and flavor to make worth drinking for a long time.

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Photo of berley31
4.2/5  rDev +4.2%
look: 4 | smell: 4 | taste: 4.5 | feel: 4 | overall: 4

A: Poured with a moderate-sized, off-white head that was thick and long-lasting. Body is a dark-yellow, golden color, and slightly hazy.

S: Interesting aroma... some fruitiness is present, complemented by the expected funkiness.

T: This is a great-tasting beer. The spiciness and fruitiness is there, again the funk comes firmly into play. Touch of bitterness in the finish that balances everything nicely.

M: Medium-bodied, medium carbonation.

D: Another great beer from Allagash... gotta love how they're always willing to go out there and push the envelope with their beers.

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Photo of beertunes
4.1/5  rDev +1.7%
look: 4 | smell: 4 | taste: 4 | feel: 4 | overall: 4.5

Bottled February 2010. Poured into tulip. Poured a hazy golden yellow-orange color with a tall, fluffy, bright white head that had great retention and very good retention.

A very nice spicy yeast aroma greets the nose. There's just a hint of funk in the background that goes nicely with the hint of citrus I picked up. That pretty much sums up the flavor profile as well, but the flavors don't seem as well defined as the aromas, and I have a weak olfactory unit.

The body was nice and mouth coating without being sticky. Drinkability was very nice, smooth and easy. Overall, very nice beer, but one that probably wasn't worth the $22 price tag.

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Photo of Aenema
4.15/5  rDev +3%
look: 3.5 | smell: 3.5 | taste: 4.5 | feel: 4 | overall: 4.5

Appearance - Pale honey, slightly cloudy with little head/lacing.
Smell - Funk, sweet malt.
Taste - Hint of banana, funk, bready malts.
Mouthfeel - Crisp, medium-bodied with a finish on the dry side.
Drinkability - Very drinkable with an interesting, refreshing nature.

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Photo of drabmuh
3.92/5  rDev -2.7%
look: 4 | smell: 4.5 | taste: 3.5 | feel: 4 | overall: 4

Served in a tulip. I'm big into wilds and sours these days, this one is not as sour as you might expect or hope if you are like me. It was still an OK beer, maybe a Belgian pale ale sort of beer with a slight sour edge.

Beer is yellow and hazy. Forms a thin white head that breaks and gravitates toward the glass but fails to leave any lacing on the walls. Carbonation is moderate to low.

Beer's aroma is quite citric and some lactic sour notes. Very nice sour aroma.

The beer itself is not so sour. There is an odd citrus bitterness to it and some zest, only slightly citric based sourness and almost no lactic notes. Finishes cleanly...not my favorite sour but its OK as far as a beer goes.

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Photo of bceagles39
3.63/5  rDev -9.9%
look: 4.5 | smell: 4 | taste: 3.5 | feel: 4 | overall: 3

Had on draft at the Great Lost Bear in Portland, Maine on May 2, 2010.

Hazy golden color, foamy head that went down pretty fast but left average/good lacing.

Funky smell right up front. Funk continues in to the taste, hint of citrusy sweetness and some sips were very tart.

Very easy drinking if you like the tartness. Earthy, hay-like finish.

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Photo of Phyl21ca
4.2/5  rDev +4.2%
look: 4 | smell: 4 | taste: 4.5 | feel: 4 | overall: 4

Bottle: Poured a hazy orangey color ale with a large foamy head with good retention and some lacing. Aroma consists of dry Brett notes with a lightly sweet malt profile and some dry European style hops. Taste is quite refreshing with some clear Brett notes that are well balance with the lightly sweet malt backbone. Dry hops also provide some further enjoyment. Body is quite full with good carbonation and no apparent alcohol. Well done and refreshing for the style.

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Photo of TMoney2591
3.33/5  rDev -17.4%
look: 4 | smell: 3.5 | taste: 3 | feel: 3.5 | overall: 3.5

Served in a ChurchKey house snifter.

I haven't had too many wilds in my career, so I jumped a bit when I saw this guy on tap at ChurchKey. The pour goes just as I suspected, resulting in a somewhat hazy champagne gold; the head consists of a ring o' large bubbles that don't last the length of the drink. The nose is wild and fruity, with notes of white grapes, brett funk, and grapefruits. The taste is not all that different, spotlighting orange peels, bananas, cloves, a dry slap of bitter hops, and the skin of some mandarin oranges (I have no other way to describe that last one...took me almost ten minutes just to come up with that). Unfortunately for me, the more bitter aspects were what shined through, drowning out the more fruity, sour, wild notes. Overall, it tasted like biting into an orange, peel and all, just before the fruit is ripe. The body is light, with moderate carbonation (less than I expected, for some strange reason) and a rather dry finish. I gotta say I was underwhelmed with this beer; not disgusted or anything like that, but definitely disappointed.

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Photo of Gosox8787
4.1/5  rDev +1.7%
look: 4 | smell: 4 | taste: 4 | feel: 4 | overall: 4.5

Presentation: 750 mL corked bottle poured from the bottle into a snifter glass in three parts. Bottled dated Feb. 2010.

Appearance: Golden yellow and hazy in color. Two finger, white, pillowy head slowly recedes into a nice white lacing. Head sticks the glass very heavily.

Aroma: Light citrus notes and bubblegum sweetness are the key notes in the aroma. Some funky notes from the Brett also are present. At first, before the beer hit room temperature, there was a strong, clean hint of hops.

Taste: Bubblegum and citrus are the main notes in the flavor as well. The funk also hits plenty, although it fluctuates in and out. Some medinicial and earthy notes are also present near the end. Some pale malt notes are also here, but don't really add anything. Clean, slightly hoppy finish. Far more subdued and clean than I thought it would be.

Mouthfeel: Full bodied and rather creamy at times. Clean finish with not much carbonation.

Drinkability: This is easily drinkable thanks to the subdued flavors and managable ABV. Certainly not a challenge to finish an entire bottle.

Overall, a much lighter, cleaner, and more subdued brew than I expected. The flavors shine far more an room temperature than when slightly chilled. The Brett funk is not overpowering at all. A nice brew, but a bit pricey in my opinion.

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Photo of woosterbill
4.43/5  rDev +9.9%
look: 5 | smell: 4.5 | taste: 4.5 | feel: 4.5 | overall: 4

On-tap at Prime 16 into a Leviathan goblet.

A: Clear gold body with a steady narrow stream of bubbles rising to an attractive 3/4" cap of creamy white foam. Pretty good retention and lots of lace. Simply gorgeous.

S: Big funky wave of lightly tart brett aroma up front, backed up with lemon, clove, and more traditional Belgian yeast esters. SOme toasty malt underlies it all, but the funky, fruity, spicy yeast is beyond dominant, and really enjoyable.

T: Like the nose, funk starts things off, but soon recedes to make way for a flavor profile like that of a more traditional Belgian golden ale - fruity esters, light spice, and bready malt. The aftertaste is clean and hugely reminiscent of Duvel - which is, of course, a good thing.

M: Medium bodied with lots of soft effervescence - very lively, yet restrained. Excellent.

D: I'll keep ordering these as long as I'm here and the keg is flowing, but thats partly because it's way cheaper than buying a bottle.

Notes: While quite tame for a wild ale, this is simply a fantastic Belgian-style beer. I don't know if it's quite $20/bottle fantastic, though, so (as always) thank God for the Prime 16 happy hour!


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Photo of popery
4.3/5  rDev +6.7%
look: 4 | smell: 4 | taste: 4.5 | feel: 4 | overall: 4.5

City Beer Store, Allagash night. I had high hopes for this beer, and while it wasn't quite up to them, it was also quite different than what I expected, altogether. It's a mildly sour beer with an excellent pale grain flavor, oddly clean for the style. Otherwise, there's a floral quality and a big earthiness from the Belgian yeast, almost lightly smoky in a dry mushroomy kind of way. Mild, though definitely detectable, hops provide bits of herbaceous, minerals and grass in the finish. The flavor is quite dry. And the feel is mild, though good. Quite drinkable for the abv and for a sour. I'm aging a bottle to see if the sour notes come out more with time.

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Allagash Confluence Ale from Allagash Brewing Company
4.03 out of 5 based on 916 ratings.
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