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Bière De Mars | Brewery Ommegang

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Bière De MarsBière De Mars

Brewed by:
Brewery Ommegang
New York, United States

Style: Bière de Garde

Alcohol by volume (ABV): 6.50%

Availability: Rotating

Notes / Commercial Description:
Ommegang Biere de Mars is a Belgian-style dry hopped amber ale with a bit of magical space dust woven in Brettanomyces bruxellensis, a wild-yeast used in the secondary fermentation. The Brett imparts added tartness, a bit of zing and some farmhouse funkiness.

Biere de Mars reveals a copper-amber body and a frothy white head that builds, clings and stays. Aromas are of malt and grain, clove, fruit and a bit of funk. Flavors are full-bodied with delicate malty sweetness, followed by spicy, peppery yeastiness and Brett-induced funk. Hopping is subtly bitter and aromatic, bumped up a bit by dry hopping. The finish is dry and gently lingering. At 6.5% ABV; it also pairs nicely with spicy foods such as barbecue.

Added by akorsak on 07-17-2006

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Reviews: 274 | Ratings: 404
Photo of dbossman
4.2/5  rDev +8.8%
look: 4 | smell: 4 | taste: 4.5 | feel: 4 | overall: 4

A: Golden hue with a slight orange-red tint; thin steady head and good lacing

S: Tart and fruity: apples, apricot marmalade, pears, pear juice, syrupy, pepper; grainy-funky and grassy

T: Slightly tart but also really dry and still fruity: apricot and pear; so dry but so good; slightly grassy and grainy

F: A touch thin because of the dryness off the back; nicely carbonated

O: A really nice, dry biere de garde; three years have been good to this guy

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Photo of Theitos
3.62/5  rDev -6.2%
look: 3.5 | smell: 4 | taste: 3.5 | feel: 3.5 | overall: 3.5

Batch #2 October 2008

A: About three fingers of white fluffy head that subsides slowly. It pours an rich amber color. I see a lot of carbonation.

S: I initially smell something that reminds me of eggnog. But on additional smelling it smells like a fleshy fruit such as a pear.

T: The taste is like a cross between a tangerine and a apricot with a bitter after taste. Its certainly a different flavor.

M: The carbonation might be a bit much.

O: I like the taste. I enjoy aged beers like this. The fruits in the beer really start to come out.

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Photo of diamondc
4/5  rDev +3.6%
look: 4 | smell: 4 | taste: 4 | feel: 4 | overall: 4

Batch #2, October 2008

A: Bright, orange/amber hue, huge head on the initial pour.

S: Brett funk right away, almost rotten fruit aromas wafting up. Intriguing.

T: Toasty, caramel malts with some mandarin/stone fruit. Brett contributes with some wet hay, aspirin-like flavors that add a bit of complexity. Enjoyable.

M: A bit dry and mildly tart on the aftertaste. Despite being laced with brett, this beer is real easy drinking and approachable.

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Photo of unclejazz
3.62/5  rDev -6.2%
look: 3.5 | smell: 4 | taste: 3.5 | feel: 3.5 | overall: 3.5

Has a cork and cage 25oz. of this, 2008 vintage.

Without going into details this beer may have suffered due to age. There were some interesting notes, a bit of the sour and dank from the brett, but it was weak. I had this with some traditional holiday fruit cake and it went well, but I wish the flavors were less muted. This is my bad, i cannot blame Ommegang for taking a chance on such an old batch.

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Photo of brentk56
3.98/5  rDev +3.1%
look: 4.5 | smell: 4 | taste: 4 | feel: 3.5 | overall: 4

Batch #2, October 2008

Appearance: Pours a cloudy apricot nectar color with a billowy head that leaves clumps and strands of foam behind

Smell: Light fruits (tangerine and pear), balsa wood and some Bretty funk

Taste: Tangerine and pear flavors interplay with white pepper and funky Brett tones through mid-palate; after the swallow, the flavor dries out, introducing the balsa wood element into the finish; tartness lingers in the aftertaste

Mouthfeel: Light to medium body; slightly overcarbonated

Overall: As others have noted, this is not the funkiest of Brett beers; still, it has a nice flavor profile and, with three years of age, has matured to become a readily drinkable beer

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Photo of mikesgroove
4/5  rDev +3.6%
look: 4 | smell: 4 | taste: 4 | feel: 4 | overall: 4

amber color that had a slight bit of haziness to it. Intresting tone here for sure as it was bordering on being a bit brighter. There was a nice head of white that came up over the top and settled down gradually into a little pillow.

The aroma was light, hints of grian, light hops and a touch of light peach and pear fruit notes. Subtle would be the ideal word here. There was a very nice flavor here, nothing really huge, just very light and drinkable. Nice touches of light grains and small doses of light fruit, mixing well and with subtle yet adequate carbonation

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Photo of mlazzaro
3.86/5  rDev 0%
look: 4.5 | smell: 3.5 | taste: 4 | feel: 3.5 | overall: 4

Batch #3 2008 bottle

Super high carbonation. Clear as can be, amberish-red. I really like the color. Crazy bubbles. Thin white head with tiny bubbles that holds decently. The dry hop mentioned on the label has completely diminished. It has an intense, highly acidic, piney-brett aroma.
Slight malt start, into pucking ph and sour brett finish. Minimal hop presence. Simple range of flavors. Also what is there is quite intense. Body in thin and drinkable. I was surprised to read the 6.5% ABV. Alcohol mixes in nicely.
I desire more complexity, but I do enjoy this one. I'm interested in trying a fresher bottle to see the difference.

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Photo of kojevergas
3.97/5  rDev +2.8%
look: 3.5 | smell: 4 | taste: 4 | feel: 4 | overall: 4

1 pt 9.4 fl oz brown glass bottle with cork and wire-cap served into a generic hefeweissbier glass in low altitude Los Angeles, California. This is Batch #3 from November 2008. Props to Schlimenhaumer outta New York for sending me the bottle. Reviewed live. This is my first Ommegang brew; I'm really excited!.

A: Pours a two finger head of nice cream and thickness, and good retention. Colour is a hazy dark copper. It's appealing.

Sm: Heavy caramel, amber hops (I can't discern the specific type), candied sugar, and some spice (sort of Winter Warmer-esque spice). Aroma is fairly strong, but very pleasant. It's certainly got subtlety. Let's dive in!

T: Wonderful candied sugar gives it a lovely character, complementing the yeasty foundation. It's very much a biscuity sort of beer, but it has spices I've had before in Winter Warmers. I don't know that I get the tartness the label refers to - maybe a touch on the climax. The hops are extremely well executed, buried subtly beneath the candied sugar without being too prominent (or bitter). Caramel is certainly present, particularly just before the climax, but it avoids being overburdening. Subtlety is key in this beer, and it's really nicely executed and built. It's very well balanced as well. In the style, I think it's among the best I've had.

Mf: Smooth and wet, without being sharp or too thick. It's also a bit... milky? It's not cream, but there's a sort of rolling smoothness I can't quite describe that's a really nice touch, particularly on the open. It helps encourage the next sip. The mouthfeel really nicely complements the taste.

Dr: Extremely drinkable, but it does make me pause to enjoy it. It's a beer with character, brewed with care and really well done. I could drink it all night and be very happy. The ABV is relatively above average, but doesn't come through in the taste, though it does pleasantly warm me stomach. All around, this a great beer that really masters the style and will be enjoyed by any true beer lover. I'm unsure of the price as I didn't purchase it, but I imagine it's rather high. I also imagine it's well worth it.

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Photo of TTAmod
3.29/5  rDev -14.8%
look: 3 | smell: 4 | taste: 3 | feel: 2.5 | overall: 3.5

Batch #2 (October 2008)

750 mL corked and caged bottle carefully poured into a snifter.

I picked this up on clearance at a Binny's for $7.99. I'm always particularly weary of clearance Brett beers. I love sours and funky beers, but bad Brett can be abysmal.

A: Easy pour produces a hazy orange brew with a nice, thick white head. There's also quite a bit of sediment flouting about, too.

S: Nice apple with a bit of earthy, tart brett. Smells like a fruity candy...sort of like Smarties.

T: Not too funky. A shot of sweet smarty-like taste at the beginning that quickly fades to a dusty/cellar taste. The sweetness takes back over again and leaves the brett-like earth taste at the end. The tastes are not as pronounced or assertive as I'd like. They're there, but a bit drowned out.

M: Mouthfeel is odd. It's prickly from the carbonation but also has a thin, almost watery feel. It's like seltzer water...not good.

O: Very bland for a brett beer, although this could be due to the age of the beer. Also not quite like other BdG's that I've had. There isn't really any bready malts or caramel taste to be had. It's also not funky enough for me to consider it a wild ale. It's not bad, per se. It's just pretty underwhelming.

Sorry, Ommegang. I usually love you guys, but this one is a miss. Mouthfeel is off and the taste is nowhere near as assertive as it should be.

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Photo of Knapp85
3.8/5  rDev -1.6%
look: 4 | smell: 4 | taste: 3.5 | feel: 4 | overall: 4

This brew poured out as a nice looking orange color. The head was there for a little while but faded to the edges of the glass and didn't leave much lacing. The smell of the beer had a little bit of a farhouse aroma to it but also had a light sweetness too. The taste of the beer gives off a slight tart kick in the beginning but fades into a really subtle earthy flavor in the end. The mouthfeel was medium bodied and had plenty of carbonation. Overall I thought this beer was really nicely done.

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Photo of Kinsman
3.67/5  rDev -4.9%
look: 3.5 | smell: 4 | taste: 3.5 | feel: 3 | overall: 4

Batch # Number 3, November 2008. Sampled August 2011.

Pours a dark copper color which is crowned with 2 inches of fluffy light off-white colored head. Aroma begins with a pleasantly sweet fruity character and a bit of Brett character with some woody and earthy notes. Brett notes step aside pretty quickly to make room for grain and malt notes to round out the nose.

First taste was a bit underwhelming with many of the flavors hiding under a watery blanket. As the beer warmed it allowed more flavor to come out starting with some sweet malt notes and a bit of fruit as well. Yeast character then steps in to provide delicate hints of spice and a nice earthy character but still it was all a bit too subtle for my liking. A good intro to Brett for some people I'm guessing but I'm left wanting a bit more.

Mouthfeel was thin and light with a semi-dry finish. Overall, this is not a "wow" beer but there are just enough delicate and subtle flavors to keep you interested. Even at this relatively low ABV I did expect a few stronger and more assertive flavors but it is wonderfully drinkable so I have no problem finishing the glass. Next time I'll try a fresher batch to compare.

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Photo of asabreed
4.1/5  rDev +6.2%
look: 4 | smell: 4 | taste: 4 | feel: 4 | overall: 4.5

25.6 oz. corked and caged bottle into a Brooklyn tulip.

Appearance: Beautifully hazy slightly darker-than-usual peach amber color, with an off-white, mildly mocha-colored head, and a few raindrops as far as lacing goes toward the top.

Smell: A nice combination of amber sweetness and Brett sourness, coupled with some bright citrus aromas too, along with some peach and possibly strawberry.

Taste: I really like the Brett combining with the darker and more candied fruit flavors here. Initial puckering sourness goes away in a flash, then lingers in the end, while in the middle the darker fruit flavors come in, along with some maple syrup and toffee, with dark cherries being prominent here among the fruits, along with some lighter candied orange or marmalade. By the end, it steers into a more dry range, but with lingering candied fruit in the distance.

Mouthfeel: Medium-bodied, with not necessarily creamy carbonation, but with enough to not make it too spritzy, but hold up to everything. Stays pretty effervescent the whole time, even after many pours from the bottle.

Drinkability: Another solid effort from Ommegang, and a brew, especially for the QPR at around $6-$7 a bottle, you really can't go wrong here. Quality all around. Will be buying a few of these next time I see it.

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Photo of vfgccp
4.23/5  rDev +9.6%
look: 4 | smell: 3.5 | taste: 4.5 | feel: 4.5 | overall: 4.5

A – Light maple apricot. Low white head holds up with poor retention and lace.

S – Pickled ginger with edgy sour notes. Orange. Touch of earthy barn yard.

T – Soft malt and a mellow sourness merge with a fruity center to bring out tart, under ripe apricot. A lemon acidity keeps the profile clean as the beer finishes with spicy pepper and sage.

M – Big, bright carbonation on a medium body.

O – Subtle, mellow and well integrated: I really enjoyed this. On the softer side of sour, this is a nice beer to introduce people to brett styled brews.

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Photo of DavidST
3.83/5  rDev -0.8%
look: 4.5 | smell: 4 | taste: 3.5 | feel: 4 | overall: 4

Poured from a 22oz bottle into a snifter glass. Date: batch #2, October 2008.

This pours a nice reddish/copper color with a large white head which quickly dissipates. The smell is vinegary, earthy, a little funk. Feel is medium, nice carbonation. Taste is different, I guess its the brett, not a taste I'm familiar with, I was expecting a sour Dutchess type of beer from the smell and I get a hard to describe dirty / earthy taste, I'm not sure what to take from it, it does have a nice long dry finish. I also get a nice sweet flavor which counteracts the earthy taste. Overall this beer isn't bad but different, quite a bit different from anything I can remember having.

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Photo of portia99
4/5  rDev +3.6%
look: 4 | smell: 4 | taste: 4 | feel: 4 | overall: 4

750ml corked and caged bottle (batch #3, November 2008 on the label) poured into a Duvel tulip.

A - Pours a rather deep amber color with a touch of haze and floating sediment. A thick 3 finger cap of very fizzy tan foam lingers briefly and falls to a thick and frothy skim coat that somehow manages to stick around after the initial sizzle dies down. Light lacing webs left on the glass.

S - Quite fruity...especially apples - first thought is that this is pretty cidery. Lots of light caramelly sweet sugar, cinnamon spicy, almost apple pie like on second thought with some grassy aspects and wet hay. The Brett character is very faint in the nose...only a faint hint of funk.

T - Fruity, appley, bitter Bretty earthiness and a bit of funk. Less fruity than the nose, but still the most up front character and still a bit cidery and maybe a bit oxydized as well. Pretty noticeable yeasty breadlike body at the base. Lightly tart...gives a bit of a lemony citrus aspect and plays off the appley base flavors.

M - Light to medium in body...certainly not at all watery. Solid malty flavors at the base that exceed the body they yield. Layers of apple and citrus on top, paired with a crisp tartness. Earthy funk adds some bitter layers. Carbonation is at a pretty high level and quite fizzy and a bit foamy on the tongue and in the mouth. Overall, satisfying.

O - Surprisingly, this is my first experience with this beer. Was roaming around a local store and I see a Brett fermented beer from 2008...how could a funk lover resist. Given the age of this, I really have to say I expected a lot more funky character in here. There certainly is some brett flavoring in here, but I was hoping for a bit more. In that respect, I found this a bit disappointing. Other than having dashed hopes a bit, I'd call this a solid, if not outstanding example of the style. A little too cidery would be my biggest critique. Overall - I'd have this again, but probably wouldn't buy it myself...unless a couple years from now I see another bottle of the same batch...might give it a shot to see if the Brett added anything more to it.

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Photo of jayhawk73
3.75/5  rDev -2.8%
look: 4 | smell: 4 | taste: 3.5 | feel: 3.5 | overall: 4

Batch #3- Brewed November 2008.

A- Pours a medium amber color with a nice one finger cocoa head. Great carbonation, and amazing lacing on this beer. You can almost see through this beer, but not quite- it's a little hazy.

S- Grains, Brett, lots of malt, spices, clove. Really nice and balanced, but a little on the weak side for me. Malt dominates the nose.

T- A lot like the nose profile. A little more funk in the taste, but it seems as though everything has been tamed a little much. Nice funk on the aftertaste.

M- Slight sour vibe, and very dry feel to it. Malt affects the feel quite a bit as well. Not bad.

O- Not bad, but a little on the tame side from a flavor standpoint. This would be a good introduction Brett beer for those who aren't sure about it.

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Photo of LaCoursiere
3.4/5  rDev -11.9%
look: 4 | smell: 4 | taste: 3 | feel: 3 | overall: 3.5

Batch #3, Nov. 2008 poured into a Duvel tulip. This is my first time reviewing the style.

A - Pours a remarkably clear brownish amber color with a fluffy one finger off-white head. The head tapers off fairly quickly to a thin covering. Minimal lacing is produced when swirled.

S - Smells like rising bread dough and apple cider backed by brett funk. It is an interesting melange of freshness and stank.

T - Spicy, funky and earthy are the predominant traits. Pepper with a hint of clove up front, fades to strong brett funk with apple and raspberry notes coming in later on with a grassy hop finish that is slightly bitter.

M - The feel is light (almost thin) with medium carbonation. The finish is dry and chalky with no alcohol presence.

O/D - The beer is a bit unbalanced favoring spice and funk. I would appreciate a bit less funk a little more subtle fruit sweetness.

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

Reviewed from notes:

appearance: copper orange brown with a 1 finger off white head

smell: citrus, malts,

taste: citrus, grapefruit, malts, little brett,

mouthfeel: mild carbonation, medium body,

overall: a very nice beer. Wish it was easier to get. Hopefully someday I'll be able to land another bottle.

The cpj

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Photo of schwaeh
3.15/5  rDev -18.4%
look: 3.5 | smell: 3.5 | taste: 2.5 | feel: 4 | overall: 3.5

Batch #3 November 2008 bottle

A: Pours a murky, hazy, darker orange. Plenty of carbonation floating up and dancing around on top.

S: Huge brett smell which drowns out a lot of other subtleties that might be in there. There is a slight past-prime fruit smell that reminds me of a certain flavor or baby food.

T: Again with the rotten fruit. Kind of an off-citrus flavor with some slight hints of grapefruit, banana, lemon, and squash. Plenty of horse blanket funk in the middle of the taste. Tastes like licking the back of plastic band aid after hand-squeezing citrus. The finish is sweet and funky with a little tingle from the carbonation.

M: Medium bodied with a full juicy mouthfeel. The high carbonation dances around in your mouth.

O: I'm glad I tried this one but I won't be mowing people down to grab another bottle. This is my first biere de garde with brett used so I wasn't sure what part it would play; The brett really takes the lead role in this beer.

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Photo of Suds
3.67/5  rDev -4.9%
look: 3.5 | smell: 4 | taste: 3.5 | feel: 4 | overall: 3.5

Hazy orange-ish colored beer with a fluffy white head. Brett is the dominant character in the aroma of this one. That, followed by a little fruit and malt. Lots of funk...barnyard, earth, and wild esters. The taste is similar: pepper and spice, a bit of alcohol, some bitterness. Very little sweetness and no real hop flavor. The beer is medium in body, highly attenuated, and nicely drinkable.

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Photo of Durge
3.45/5  rDev -10.6%
look: 4 | smell: 4 | taste: 3 | feel: 3.5 | overall: 3.5

A very cloudy amber color with a healthy off-white head and decent but spotty lacing. The aroma offers a sharp but pleasant cherry sweet tarts with a sour apple element. The first mouthful has much the same though it’s not particularly sweet. It’s a somewhat grassy, acrid thing with a sort of chalky rhubarb idea. Carbonation is very prominent, soda-esque feel, with a medium-light body and decent drinkability. It’s worthy of a try but not very alluring for me.

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Photo of SubpoenaDeuces
2.9/5  rDev -24.9%
look: 3 | smell: 3 | taste: 2.5 | feel: 4 | overall: 3

Ommegang Biere De Mars 6.5% American Wild Ale

A: Nice orange hues, with some amber tones at the edges, thick huge head that poured 3 fingers with little agitation, as all the Ommegang labels so irritatingly instruct

S: You get the wet dog, bandaid plastic sort of notes, with an underlying chardonnay dryness, some crisp granny smith apple

T: At first you get a decent sweetness, with some brett funk that has that vaporous quality of funk and plastic, it subsides into a very mild tartness. the tart hardly registers and it zips off into obscurity very quickly. If you approach this with dreams of temptation and consecration in your head, curb your desires at the door, the alternative brett additions were either done as an afterthought, or in excess.

M: The mouthfeel is thin and not exceptionally overbearing, this is this beer's best quality. Which is like having a really solid rhythm guitarist, you dont want support categories taking center stage. I fear this beer suffers from Petit Obscuritis where the anticipation from the bottle makes you expect more than can ever be delivered. It isn't bad, per se, but it is barely a sour. It is more an amber than anything else, to a non-beer drinker you would have to specifically note what makes it different. Some of the brett sweetness comes off as some kind of an adjunct, which is disheartening for the style

Narrative: "His resume was just so impressive, quadlingual, volunteer in Burma, summa cum laude from Vassar..." "Yeah summa cum garbage, he has the worst people skills I have ever seen, how is he going to sell anything? He's just so...abrasive." It wasn't Dan Mikelson's demeanor that was offputting, in fact he was attractive to the untrained person. He would even seem exotic and interesting, until he opened his mouth and began talking about Jimmy Johnson's points in the Nextel cup. Most customers would sigh and move lithely from the digital camera section until he followed them intentionally into the digital printers section, and continue to harangue them with tales of last years bocce ball tournament. "Look at that, that canadian couple just requested an item outright and he convinced them that they werent going to use it to its full potential, I dont care how attractive he is, you gotta fire this guy." "But sir...think about if someone get's hurt his resume says he is a registered RN and" "I dont care, his resume is a lie, he is a jerk and I want him OUT OF MY OFFICE DEPOT?! YOU HEAR ME?!"

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Photo of Spider889
3.29/5  rDev -14.8%
look: 3 | smell: 4 | taste: 3.5 | feel: 1.5 | overall: 3

Bottle shared at the second Central Ohio Beer Tasting. I want to say this was a Keffa contribution but I can't remember it has been so long now.

Pours a cloudy copper orange color. The head isn't much to appreciate, though it does at least produce some foam. Very vigorous yet fine carbonation.

Smells nice and funky at first with notes of wet barnyard and orange peel, but over time I seemed to only really be detecting brettanomyces. I like a good brett infused beer as much as the next guy, but it's a damaging yeast when used haphazardly.

Tasted a little hot, though I imagine it was moreso the carbonation and brett aggravating my throat. Crisp carbonation, though it did get detracting over time. Mild fruit flavors give way to a dusty funk as it warmed.

As for mouthfeel, there was simply way too much carbonation. It was biting and painful at times.

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Photo of JizackFH
3.73/5  rDev -3.4%
look: 4 | smell: 3.5 | taste: 4 | feel: 3.5 | overall: 3.5

A - This beer pours a hazy golden amber color. It has a nice 2-finger white head on it. The head has decent retention, and it leaves some good lacing behind.

S - It smells of toasted malt, spices, yeast esters, and some funk.

T - The taste is not as big as the nose suggests. You can taste the brett right away, as well as fruit notes such as apple, white grapes, and maybe some pear. There is also some farmhouse funk and some clove present.

M - It has a medium body and crisp carbonation. It goes down quite smoothly.

O - Overall, I thought this was a good tasting beer, that would be great on a hot summer day. I found it to be pretty refreshing, and I would buy it again. I just wish the flavor had been as complex as the nose. Other than that, I really enjoyed it. This was my first Biere De Garde, and I am looking forward to trying more. I recommend giving this one a shot. Cheers.

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Photo of Wildman
3.65/5  rDev -5.4%
look: 4 | smell: 4 | taste: 3.5 | feel: 3.5 | overall: 3.5

This beer poured a medium clear amber color and formed a nice foamy golden head that left latticed lace as it subsided. A medium amount of carbonation is present. An aroma of malt, cloves and pepper. The flavor was of malt, bread and a bit of chocolate and pepper. The body was medium light and the finish sprite. Not really my style.

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Bière De Mars from Brewery Ommegang
3.86 out of 5 based on 404 ratings.
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