Thumbprint Wild Sour Ale
New Glarus Brewing Company

Thumbprint Wild Sour AleThumbprint Wild Sour Ale
Write a Review
Beer Geek Stats: | Print Shelf Talker
Style:
American Wild Ale
Ranked #48
ABV:
5%
Score:
97
Ranked #411
Avg:
4.39 | pDev: 8.66%
Reviews:
144
Ratings:
1,079
From:
New Glarus Brewing Company
 
Wisconsin, United States
Avail:
Rotating
Wants
  293
Gots
  151
SCORE
97
World-Class
Thumbprint Wild Sour AleThumbprint Wild Sour Ale
Notes: Naturally soured by farm valley winds blowing wild yeast into our oak casks. Finally, after a year and a half of patient coaxing Wisconsin dark malts whirl in a kaleidoscope of cedar, caramel and tart green plum exuberance. Available to the exclusive few who travel off the beaten paths, this is authentic Wisconsin sour brown ale. Truly unique this Sour Ale is brewed for those who live on the wild side and is suitable for laying down or consuming immediately, serve at 40 – 45 °F.
Reviews: 144 | Ratings: 1,079 | Log in to view all ratings and sort
Photo of beertunes
4.44/5  rDev +1.1%
look: 4 | smell: 4.25 | taste: 4.5 | feel: 4.25 | overall: 4.75

Thanks to The_Game for this one, from the recent Rookies BIF. 2018 vintage,12oz bottle poured into 14oz teku. poured a dark, solid brown color, with 1/4 inch of tan head that had moderate retention and light lacing.

A nice funk popped out as soon as I popped the cap. Upon further sniffing, there was a solid fruit scent, sorta cherry-ish, but coulda been berry-like as well, either way, very pleasant. There was a good underlying grain aroma as well.

Very similar on the tongue; funky, fruity tartness all around.

The body was on the lighter side of medium, smooth, clean, and had tartly dry finish.

Drinkability was excellent, I would have it in rotation if possible.

Overall, another great brew from NG. An absolute must-try if you can.

 744 characters

beertunes from Montenegro, May 08, 2020
Photo of Tilley4
4.69/5  rDev +6.8%
look: 4.75 | smell: 4.5 | taste: 4.75 | feel: 4.75 | overall: 4.75

Easily one of the top 10 beers I've ever had...

This is the perfect combination of sour and fruit... I can't quite put my finger on what the fruity aspect is. Berries and green apple maybe? Whatever it is, it is fantastic...

I received this beer in a secret santa box and it makes me wish I could find and purchase every bottle left. It is a wheelhouse beer for me. I love New Glarus and this absolutely hits a homerun...

I would highly highly recommend trying this if you see a bottle or get the chance.

 509 characters

Tilley4 from Tennessee, Dec 30, 2019
Photo of buschbeer
4.25/5  rDev -3.2%
look: 4.25 | smell: 4.25 | taste: 4.25 | feel: 4.25 | overall: 4.25

12 FL. OZ. bottle
Served in a sour glass
2013

This beer pours a deep ruddy brown with blood orange highlights. It is topped with an inch of tan head that leaves no lacing.

I get a little brown sugar and cherry. It has a pleasant sour aroma similar to a Flanders brown ale.

It has an initial sweet taste that is quickly replaced with tart cherry. It kind of reminds me of a tart cherry dessert. It has a good amount of sourness but not over the top.

Medium bodied with a semi dry mouthfeel

This is a pretty good sour. It reminds of the Flanders variety. I prefer lambic styles.

 582 characters

Photo of GuyFawkes
4/5  rDev -8.9%
look: 4 | smell: 4 | taste: 4 | feel: 4 | overall: 4

Bottled 6/27/13; drank 9/22/19 @ the Yarchives.

Nearly opaque brown/orange rust appearance.

An even pour yielded a nice khaki head; frothy lace.

Lemon, raspberry & mild candied wheat notes in the nose.

Medium thin mouthfeel.

Raspberry, lemon & wheat flavors up front; a faint note of vinegar on the finish.

Perhaps this one was aged a bit too long, but it was still enjoyable. I'd have another.

 406 characters

GuyFawkes from Illinois, Sep 23, 2019
Photo of Dope
4.19/5  rDev -4.6%
look: 3.5 | smell: 3.75 | taste: 4.5 | feel: 4.25 | overall: 4.25

2018 batch

A: Dark brown with reddish highlights. Smallish light brown head, no lacing or head retention.

S: Hmph. Kinda sweet smelling. Sweet berries I guess? Little bit of stone fruit.

T: Interesting flavor. Sweet-ish berries, cherries and apples I'd say? Caramel sweetness almost gives the impression of caramelized apple skin in the aftertaste. Some acidic tartness and funk in there but nothing overpowering. In fact I'd say that it mainly serves to balance out the sweetness and fruitiness - and it does so well.

M: Medium bodied, tart and drying.

O: Excellent sour from New Glarus. It tastes like a cross between a "normal" sour and one of New Glarus' typical fruit beers. To be clear, this is a good thing. Yum.

 728 characters

Dope from Massachusetts, Sep 02, 2019
Photo of CanConPhilly
4.41/5  rDev +0.5%
look: 4.25 | smell: 4.5 | taste: 4.5 | feel: 4.25 | overall: 4.25

L - 1/2 finger yellow/brown head atop a translucent brown body.

S - vinegar, grapes, mixed berries, brown sugar.

T - follows the nose. Lots of acid. No bitterness. Moderate sweetness. No booziness.

F - medium-light body with average carb.

O - so much flavor at a low abv.

 275 characters

CanConPhilly from Pennsylvania, Jun 01, 2019
Photo of rodbeermunch
4.29/5  rDev -2.3%
look: 3.75 | smell: 4 | taste: 4.5 | feel: 4.5 | overall: 4.25

Ah here's a treat. Down to only 1-2 bottles left, as usual in this situation, this review encompasses the beer drank fresh and its subsequent intervals of drinking since then. Happy to say it hasn't lost anything.

Pours a reddish brown color. Forms a small 1/5" off white head. Aroma is red wine sour with earthy notes.

Taste is considerably more sour than other Belgian examples people are comparing it to. Not overly acidic, the earthiness and caramel malt do a great job here providing a tempering material. Real good oak participation resulting in a nice back end drying quality. Beer really runs from point A to point B with a lot of distance and change in between them. The brown malt is flavorful yet light.

This is an excellent AWA meets Oud Bruin kind of beer. Its funny when I see breweries charging $30-40 for their wild ales. Then you have this super affordable super delicious stuff. Another great example of the amazing beers you don't have to chase around or drop a paycheck for to acquire.

 1,025 characters

Photo of chinchill
3.5/5  rDev -20.3%
look: 3.25 | smell: 3.25 | taste: 3.75 | feel: 3.25 | overall: 3.5

New Glarus 2018 sour wild ale.

Poured hazy reddish copper body with a weak head. Tart fruity aroma with a hint of fruit vinegar.
The flavor is intensely tart but drinkable with significant fruit notes.
I enjoyed this but it is very tart and somewhat challenging to drink, so just a few ounces was enough.

 307 characters

chinchill from South Carolina, Feb 09, 2019
Photo of Hopheadjeffery
4.33/5  rDev -1.4%
look: 4.75 | smell: 4.25 | taste: 4.25 | feel: 4.75 | overall: 4.25

Tasted in a Rastal Teku from a 12 fl oz bottle on October 25, 2018. Sour brown ale with notes of cedar, caramel and dark dried fruits. Highly recommended.

 154 characters

Photo of CRW
4.81/5  rDev +9.6%
look: 4.75 | smell: 5 | taste: 4.75 | feel: 4.75 | overall: 4.75

I’ve never felt the need to review a beer in the 3 plus years I’ve been browsing this site. First let me stipulate I love Rodenbach Alexexader it is a favorite and a must have for me. This is the 1st beer I’ve had that I’ve had that gives it a run for its money for me. It’s a perfect example of a Wild Ale fruity, funky, with enough fruit flavor to make you make you want to enjoy it, to save the last swallow! I’m so glad I have another of these or I’d be depressed that I’d probably never have it again

 521 characters

CRW from Indiana, Nov 29, 2018
Photo of AyatollahGold
4.03/5  rDev -8.2%
look: 4 | smell: 4 | taste: 4 | feel: 4.25 | overall: 4

Excited about trying this as I always seem to enjoy New Glarus sours. Pouring from a 12 oz. bottle into a wine glass this beer pours out looking like a tea. Brown with some lemon like highlights. Really does remind me a lot of tea. The smell is acidic and a lot of fruit. Grapes, pear, earthy flowers too. The taste comes in a lot smoother than the nose puts off and is greatly balanced with those earthy and fruit notes. The white grapes, pear and earthy must make this a nice drink. Dry finish. Love the balance and drinkability new glarus brings with their sours.

 566 characters

Photo of Lingenbrau
4.5/5  rDev +2.5%
look: 3.75 | smell: 4.25 | taste: 4.75 | feel: 4.5 | overall: 4.5

2018 version from a bottle thanks to Joe. Joe, thanks Joe. Joe.

A copper, no Rusty orange colored beverage here. Brown and red highlights too. Opaque and reminds me of Munich malt syrup actually. A two finger off white foam lazily descends leaving good spotted lacing behind.

Though it makes no mention of it, I am immediately accepting this as a Flanders Red. The acidity is piercing, and the dark cherry and plum fruity elements undeniable. Each sniff triggering the glands in the back of my mouth to salivate uncontrollably.

Exquisite. The plum comes in first followed by dark cherries. A puckering sourness comes quickly behind, but a faint chocolate then clean wood barrel flavor offsets it. A lingering flavor of tart candied apples makes pauses between sips remarkably enjoyable.

The feel is just perfect for this. Luxuriously soft with a tingle of tartness and light carbonation act as the perfect vessel to deliver such poise and balance to the its sweet roots.

New Glarus Thumbprint beers continue to blow me away. This one is rediculously good yet again. No need to age. Drink this now!

Thanks again Joe! Cheers.

 1,144 characters

Photo of darktronica
4.32/5  rDev -1.6%
look: 3.75 | smell: 4.25 | taste: 4.5 | feel: 4.25 | overall: 4.25

2018 release, obtained as part of a recent trade, and I'm glad I signed up for an add of "a couple NG Thumbprints" without requiring specification of which release I'd be getting. The 2018 vintage pours a murky brown with modest fizz. Moderately high acidity is foreshadowed on the nose, that has a fruity and sharp acetic twang to it. Crabapple, plum, fresh white pineapple, and lychee, joined by a tart apple cider. Great oak barrel character complements the fruit on the palate, adding a bit more tartness and some softer vanilla and caramel notes. Extremely well balanced.

 576 characters

Photo of superspak
4.38/5  rDev -0.2%
look: 4.5 | smell: 4 | taste: 4.5 | feel: 4.5 | overall: 4.5

Got in a trade with GreenBayBA. 12 ounce bottle into tulip glass, best before 11/24/2018. Pours slightly hazy deep reddish orange/copper color with a 1-2 finger dense and rocky light khaki head with fantastic retention, that reduces to a nice cap that lasts. Dense soapy lacing clings on the glass, with a fair amount of streaming carbonation. Fantastic appearance. Aromas of big tart lemon, lime, cranberry, strawberry, orange, grapefruit, cherry, peach, plum, pear, apricot, red/green apple, red grape/wine, hay, straw, grass, oak, caramel, brown sugar, and toasted bread; with light notes of oaken vanilla, leathery/musty funk, red wine vinegar, and yeast/oak earthiness. Damn nice aromas with great balance and complexity of fruity/funky/acidic yeast, oak barrel, and dark/bready malt notes; with great strength. Taste of big tart lemon, lime, cranberry, strawberry, orange, grapefruit, cherry, peach, plum, pear, apricot, red/green apple, red grape/wine, hay, straw, grass, oak, caramel, brown sugar, and toasted bread; with light notes of oaken vanilla, leathery/musty funk, red wine vinegar, and yeast/oak earthiness. Light-moderate lactic tartness; light wine tang, and Brett spiciness on the finish. Lingering notes of tart lemon, lime, cranberry, strawberry, orange, grapefruit, cherry, peach, plum, pear, apricot, red/green apple, red grape/wine, hay, straw, grass, oak, caramel, brown sugar, toasted bread, light funk/vinegar, and yeast/oak/toasted earthiness on the finish for a good bit. Amazing complexity, robustness, and balance of fruity/funky/acidic yeast, oak barrel, and dark/bready malt flavors; with a fantastic malt/tangy/tartness balance, with no puckering flavors after the finish. Light-moderate increasing dryness from lingering tang/tartness. Medium carbonation and body; with a very smooth, moderately creamy/bready, fairly acidic, and lightly tangy/tannic balanced mouthfeel that is fantastic. Zero warming alcohol as expected of 5%. Overall this is an amazing Flanders brown ale! All around incredible complexity, robustness, and balance of fruity/funky/acidic yeast, oak barrel, and dark/bready malt flavors; very smooth and pretty refreshing to drink with the mellowly acidic/tangy/drying finish, not overly lactic. Amazing Brett/bacteria complexity, oak presence, and dark/bready malt balance against acidity. Not overly sweet from lingering dryness. A highly enjoyable offering, and amazing style example as expected. They always seem to make world class level sours.

 2,503 characters

superspak from Michigan, Oct 06, 2018
Photo of tigerinatrance
4.31/5  rDev -1.8%
look: 4 | smell: 4.25 | taste: 4.5 | feel: 4 | overall: 4.25

Oofta, what Wisconsin can do! Brought it back to my displaced home for now of New York in a four pack of 12 oz. bottles. How I missed my favorite New Glarus brews, and discovered a few new ones, this being one of them. I also recommend highly the Raspberry Tart and Wisconsin Belgian Red. Also picked up some Two Women, Fat Squirrel, Spotted Cow, and Totally Naked which I will be reviewing in due time.

L: poured into a standard pint glass, pours a dark whiskey brown with golden honey hues at the edge of the glass. Just under a two finger head of creamy off white, very slight mustard tint. Head dissipates fairly quickly, I’ll get back to that. Cloudy, inconsistent lacing follows it down the glass slllooowwwlllyyy.

S: oh goodness. Fermented dark fleshy fruit, plum like scent precedes a SUPER funky faint rye bread fullness. A bit of fermented tobacco.

T: spunky, funky, yeasty sourness without too much bitter tartness. This tastes like the delectable, perplexing, high ABV beer you expect it to be. Slightly sweet, honey like at the end. Extremely complex. This beer separates myself from über experiences beer tasters. I’ll get there.

F: super carbonated at first, disspitating quickly to borderline syrupy feel if you hold it in your mouth for a few seconds. Slight (slight!!!) alcohol burn on the throat, but that might just be the sour spunkiness confusing me.

O: my favorite beer I’ve had since Switchback Smoked Marzen. Fantastic showing of a challenging style. I’m in love with everything about this beer. Extremely unique. I wish I had more friends here in NY so I could share with them something they’d probably never have the opportunity to experience otherwise. I miss New Glarus beer, I miss Wisconsin. This beer fills me with that.

 1,770 characters

Photo of 2beerdogs
4.27/5  rDev -2.7%
look: 4 | smell: 4.5 | taste: 4.25 | feel: 4 | overall: 4.25

2018 Wild Sour Ale
Poured into my elegant Yazoo Brewing tulip glass (generously sent to me by @Buck89 )
A dark amber hue pushes a sandy colored foamy cap just shy of 2 fingers in height. Clear, but dark enough to taunt the sunlight weakly piercing through. No lacing.
The smell is wow... There's a lot going on here. Sniff after sniff, combing my past culinary and zymurgical experiences, and challenging my vocabulary. Let's try some words. I wanna use the best words. The greatest words. Ugh, that sounds like a voice on the news. Ok, here we go.
Smells of plum, cherry, muddled raspberry, wet burnished leather, some wet oak barrel notes, all tied together with a soft sourness.
Taste has a sour plum, tart raspberry, oaky flanders tart to sour aspect to it. I'm getting a salted plum nuance that shadows these other more dominant flavors. Wow, it takes one for a ride all over.
Mouthfeel is medium, carbonation drops off to almost zero. Slightly slick.
Overall, I have no recommendations. I wouldn't be so presumptuous. It's an amazing sour that I assume is a sour brown.

Thanks, Chris!

 1,091 characters

2beerdogs from California, Sep 20, 2018
Photo of DavidR_9
4.41/5  rDev +0.5%
look: 4 | smell: 4.25 | taste: 4.5 | feel: 4.5 | overall: 4.5

Dark brown semi cloudy body with amber/red color towards the edges. Thin khaki head with tight bubbles. Aroma is light, earthy, oakey, and fruity. Taste is plesantly sour plum, hints of cherry tartness, oak, cedar, hint of caramel, and a funky lemon rind character that elegantly tapers off with the caramel, cedar, and toasted malt finish. Medium smooth mouthfeel and almost silky as the light prickly carbonation accentuates the wild yeast funk character. Very pleasantly and certainly their more sour offering that I’ve tried thus far.

 540 characters

DavidR_9 from California, Sep 13, 2018
Photo of JohnnyHopps
4.49/5  rDev +2.3%
look: 4.25 | smell: 4.5 | taste: 4.5 | feel: 4.5 | overall: 4.5

Appearance - The poured brown with some dark red hints.

Smell - The revealed oak and definite tart notes.

Taste - At the front, I detect slight spruce notes. The cherry set in with notes of cherry skin, oak, and a hint of lime. The sourness is not overpowering of acidic. Oak notes shined in the finish.

Mouthfeel - Carbonation came in little bubbles and allowed the sourness to linger.

Overall - Wild Sour Ale is a treat.

 430 characters

Photo of TargaFlorio
4.46/5  rDev +1.6%
look: 4.25 | smell: 4.5 | taste: 4.5 | feel: 4.25 | overall: 4.5

One of the best all-around breweries in the country, I was really looking forward to trying this sour ale from New Glarus. Pours a hazy maroon with lighter colors along the edges. A modest head results in a small amount of bubbled lacing. Aroma is mixed acidic fruits, tart apple and cranberry, wine and oak. Taste follows the nose with some mildly tart fruits like cranberry, grape and apple. The wine-like notes start to take over mixed with oak. Probably not as acidic as the aroma might indicate, especially as it warms. The mouthfeel is probably more reserved than it could be (that's a positive in my book). Overall, a wonderful beer that my limited beer palate fails to properly communicate.

I have so much respect for New Glarus. They routinely churn out world-class beers and do so in the least pretentious way possible. Other breweries would charge an arm and a leg for a beer this good and probably put it in huge bottles so as to maximize profit. 4 packs of 12 oz bottles, these guys just get it.

 1,020 characters

Photo of REVZEB
4.38/5  rDev -0.2%
look: 4.25 | smell: 4.25 | taste: 4.5 | feel: 4.5 | overall: 4.25

Wow this might be the most complex beer I have ever had from New Glarus. The smell is that of an oak sour in the traditional belgian style, with a yeast complexion guiding and a caramel apple finish. The taste is where this beer shines, with waves upon waves of different fruits and flavors. Tart green apple, grape must, toffee, brown sugar, plum, caramel, pear, almond, oak chips, and a touch of cherry. Slightly acidic, will age to see how they can meld together more going forward.

AGING NOTE: Tried a bottle after a year, and I highly recommend it! Really settles into itself well!

 592 characters

REVZEB from Illinois, Jul 27, 2018
Photo of Lucular
4.64/5  rDev +5.7%
look: 4.25 | smell: 4.5 | taste: 4.75 | feel: 4.5 | overall: 4.75

An incredibly complex beer even at this young age: quite sour, lots of funk, tart green apple/plum, oak, tannins, with a bit of oud bruin character from the dark malt. I am excited to be able to crack open a bottle every 3-6 months to see how this evolves.

 256 characters

Lucular from Maryland, Jul 24, 2018
Photo of MonDak_Joe1953
4.57/5  rDev +4.1%
look: 4 | smell: 4.5 | taste: 4.75 | feel: 4.5 | overall: 4.5

Poured from 12oz bottle into glass. No bottling date information found on container, but the label identifies this as '2018 Wild Sour Ale'.
Murky, brown/plum colored body. A thin off white head which disappears. No lacing.
Wonderful aroma of sour fruit and oak barrel, cedar and caramel join in.
Sweet/tart/sour taste of plum, and caramel, with the cedar coming in late. Oak barrel goodness.
Medium, crushable mouth feel. Fizzy in the mouth, and quite dry in the finish.
This is a total plum delight, with excellent aroma, taste, and mouth feel. Totally recommended, if one likes a sour beer. The delectable aspects that wrap around the sour core make this a beer to seek out.

 676 characters

Photo of uwmgdman
4.39/5  rDev 0%
look: 4 | smell: 4.25 | taste: 4.5 | feel: 4.25 | overall: 4.5

2018 version.
Pours a hazy chestnut brown with an ample pale khaki head, leaves great lacing along the glass. Aroma is bright and acidic, some nutty malt and fruity notes. Flavor is delicious— toasty, nutty rich malt and a bright acidic sour character. Fruity. Nice undercurrent of oak. Medium body, medium-high carb. Bright long finish. Well done!!!!

 362 characters

uwmgdman from Wisconsin, Jul 06, 2018
Photo of Blackop555
4.41/5  rDev +0.5%
look: 4.25 | smell: 4.5 | taste: 4.5 | feel: 4.25 | overall: 4.25

Pours reddish-brown. Follow me, medium, off-white head that lasts shortly.

Smells oaky, earthy, yeast Funk, tart fruit and berry, unripe apple, caramel and light brown sugar.

Taste tart apple and Berry. Followed by caramel malt, brown sugar and an earthy light yeast funk. Finish is semi-sweet with a berry and yeast linger. Lighter medium body and fizzy medium carbonation.

 376 characters

Blackop555 from Michigan, Aug 11, 2017
Photo of Phyl21ca
3.74/5  rDev -14.8%
look: 3.5 | smell: 3.75 | taste: 3.75 | feel: 3.75 | overall: 3.75

Bottle: Poured a reddish color ale with a medium size off-white foamy head with OK retention and light lacing notes. Aroma of vinous notes with some oak and sour notes also perceptible. Taste is a nice mix between some vinous notes with some oak and tart notes. Some light residual sugar notes can also be detected. Body is quite full with good carbonation. Good sour that is closer to a Flander Red that a wild ale. A bit overrated in my opinion.

 447 characters

Phyl21ca from Quebec (Canada), Feb 29, 2016
Thumbprint Wild Sour Ale from New Glarus Brewing Company
Beer rating: 97 out of 100 with 1079 ratings