Cherry Lager - Brandy Barrel-Aged
Lakefront Brewery, Inc.

Cherry Lager - Brandy Barrel-AgedCherry Lager - Brandy Barrel-Aged
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Fruit and Field Beer
3.98 | pDev: 9.55%
Lakefront Brewery, Inc.
Wisconsin, United States
Retired (no longer brewed)
Very Good
Cherry Lager - Brandy Barrel-AgedCherry Lager - Brandy Barrel-Aged
Notes: Pours deep red with a thin, lacy head. Strong brandy overtones of fresh cut oak, tobacco, and red fruit greet the nose, followed by notes of toffee and marzipan. The taste echoes the aroma with intense brandy flavors of wood, vanilla, and mild black pepper , with tart cherry and toasty caramel malt in close pursuit. Medium-bodied, it finishes with lingering cherry tartness and mild alcohol warmth.
The relatively high ABV and brandy-forward character make Brandy Barrel-Aged Cherry Lager an excellent digestif. Try it with a piece of dried fruit and almond-infused dark chocolate or a generous chunk of Ader Käse Reserve cheese.
Reviews: 17 | Ratings: 56 | Log in to view all ratings and sort
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AdmiralOzone from Minnesota

4.27/5  rDev +7.3%
look: 4.25 | smell: 4 | taste: 4.5 | feel: 4 | overall: 4.25

Pours a clear reddish brown with an off white (red tint) head that recedes quickly and leaves minimal lacing. Aroma is funky sour cherries and just a whiff of grapes. Flavor is sweeter than the aroma would suggest, cherries prominent and the brandy barrel is minimal. Feel is light and slightly dry. Overall a very nice beer.

Jul 10, 2018
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stortore from Illinois

4/5  rDev +0.5%
look: 4 | smell: 4 | taste: 4 | feel: 4 | overall: 4

12 ounce bottle into a flute glass. Bottled 5/27/17, had 8/14/17.

Pours a lightly hazy amber, with a one and a half inch foamy head and some foamy lacing. Active carbonation. Looks like apple juice. Aromas of brandy, cherries, apples, some malt and caramel, light yeast, some oak. The taste is brandy- more as it warms, caramel, malt, some cherries, less apples than the nose, some oak, a light sweetness. Smooth, a good lighter body, well carbonated.

The brandy is excellent, the cherries are good but could stand out more. Like the uniqueness, look forward to aging a few bottles. Good price point for a six pack, so it’s worth a purchase.

Feb 26, 2018
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mothmanscott from Georgia

4.02/5  rDev +1%
look: 3.75 | smell: 4.25 | taste: 4 | feel: 3.75 | overall: 4

This one recommended by Zach at Warehouse Package in Albany, Georgia. Pours a slightly hazy, reddish deep amber, dusty with fine particulates & moderate effervesce streaming up from the bottom. The pour produces barely 2 fingers of short-lived, pink tinged khaki head which diminishes to a thin cap & collar ring leaving little lacing on the sides of the glass. Aroma is cherry pie, bread crust & brandy with hints of oak, cracker, caramel & lemon. Taste is also cherry pie-like including the bread crust but the crust is not as noticeable in the mouth as in the nose. The barrel aging is also more evident in the mouth with brandy, oak & yes tobacco hints present with candy apple. Sweet fronted but drying to become very dry by the peppery finish & short-lived aftertaste. Mouthfeel is medium bodied with moderate carbonation, smooth with a light prickliness on the back of the palette, clean & dry. While it goes down smooth it would not be an easy beer to drink. I feel it would become cloying in both the nose and mouth before you got far into a second bottle. A previous reviewer suggested it had dessert beer qualities. I don't think that's far off the mark. Just not as heavy as most dessert beers usually are.

Nov 12, 2017
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Czequershuus from Minnesota

4.31/5  rDev +8.3%
look: 4.25 | smell: 4.5 | taste: 4.25 | feel: 4.25 | overall: 4.25

This beer pours a pale amber with a medium sized pink hued head. The aroma is fairly fruit driven, but not only fresh cherry, also raisin, plum, and earl grey tea. The flavor starts with bright ripe cherry, then a hint of chocolate and tutti fruit, blueberry, raisin, earl grey tea, and toffee and vanilla on the finish. The mouthfeel is soft, with just a touch of sticky sweetness, and foamy carbonation. Overall this is a really tasty beer - the cherry is not overbearing or one note, but this is a very nuanced beer with no hint of the ABV.

Oct 26, 2017
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superspak from Ohio

3.9/5  rDev -2%
look: 4 | smell: 4 | taste: 4 | feel: 4 | overall: 3.5

12 ounce bottle into tulip glass, bottled on 5/25/2017. Pours slightly hazy reddish copper color with a 1 finger fairly dense and fluffy off white head with good retention, that reduces to a thin cap that lingers. Light spotty lacing clings on the glass, with a fair amount of streaming carbonation retaining the cap. Aromas of big lightly tart cherry, golden raisin, peach, plum, berry, apple, red grape, caramel, brown sugar, toasted oak, and bread dough; with lighter notes of nuttiness, toffee, vanilla, and oak/toasted earthiness. Very nice aromas with good balance and complexity of bready malt, cherries, and brandy barrel notes; with great strength. Taste of big lightly tart cherry, golden raisin, peach, plum, berry, apple, red grape, caramel, brown sugar, toasted oak, and bread dough; with lighter notes of nuttiness, toffee, vanilla, and oak/toasted earthiness. Light herbal bitterness, oak spiciness, and fruit tartness on the finish. Lingering notes of cherry, golden raisin, peach, plum, berry, apple, red grape, caramel, brown sugar, toasted oak, bread dough, nuttiness, toffee, vanilla, and oak/toasted earthiness on the finish for a good bit. Very nice complexity, robustness, and balance of bready malt, cherries, and brandy barrel flavors; with a nice malt/tart/bitterness balance, and zero cloying flavors after the finish. Perfectly clean on lager flavors, with zero yeast notes present. Light-moderate dryness from bitter/tartness after the finish. Medium carbonation and medium-plus body; with a very smooth, moderately bready/grainy, fairly crisp, and lightly tangy/tannic balanced mouthfeel that is nice. Minimal warming alcohol for 10.7%, with zero barrel booziness. Overall this is a delicious fruited imperial pale lager style. All around nice complexity, robustness, and balance of bready malt, cherries, and brandy barrel flavors; very smooth, crisp, and pretty refreshing to drink for the big ABV. Pretty much perfectly balanced between cherries, malts, and brandy barrel complexities across the board. A very enjoyable offering.

Aug 05, 2017
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Prager62 from Colorado

3.58/5  rDev -10.1%
look: 4 | smell: 3.5 | taste: 3.5 | feel: 4 | overall: 3.5

A twelve ounce bottle dated 25 MAY 2017 poured in a twelve ounce old school pilsener glass.

Look- Pours a transparent ruby red with a small finger of soapy white foam. It quickly settles revealing no lacing.

Smell- Tart cherry, some floral and fruity yeast.

Taste- Maraschino cherry, a hint of spicy brandy and musty wood.

Feel- Crisp and clean with a slightly tart semi dry finish.

Overall- I've seen their barrel aged offerings on the shelves and decided to finally roll the dice. It's a very drinkable beer for the hefty abv., but lacking in any complexity. Try it if you're curious, otherwise move on.

Jul 03, 2017
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bbtkd from South Dakota

4.01/5  rDev +0.8%
look: 3.5 | smell: 3.75 | taste: 4.25 | feel: 4 | overall: 4

Lakefront Bourbon BA Cherry Lager, 10.7% ABV. Pours dark orange with a half-finger white head. Nose is cherry and bourbon, taste follows with almost no bitterness. As far as cherry flavoring, it is slightly tart, but mostly sweet but not cloying - nothing like a wine cooler for instance. It has a pleasant bourbon heat. Excellent mouthfeel, overall excellent.

Jun 23, 2017
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57md from Pennsylvania

3.81/5  rDev -4.3%
look: 3.75 | smell: 4 | taste: 3.75 | feel: 3.75 | overall: 3.75

Pours a striking copper color with a half finger of head. The nose has notes of tart cherries. The tartness is apparent in the flavor as well. Surprisingly, there is not much sweetness or anything else from the brandy-barrel. There is some essence of wood on the finish and a Chardonnay-like dryness as well.

Apr 05, 2017
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bloatednemesis from Wisconsin

4.6/5  rDev +15.6%
look: 5 | smell: 5 | taste: 4.5 | feel: 4 | overall: 4.5

Light colored head and rose colored appearance. Cherry, sugar, some booze and almost doughy aroma. It smells just like cherry cheesecake ice . Flavor follows. Great flavor, sweet, but not too cloying. Slightly tart, but balanced by sweetness and a very very slight hops. Big, medium carbonated body. I like this one a lot as a great execution of a cherry beer and unusal fruited doppelbock.

Jan 09, 2017
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Hopheadjeffery from Illinois

3.96/5  rDev -0.5%
look: 3.75 | smell: 4 | taste: 4 | feel: 3.75 | overall: 4

Tasted in an 11 oz snifter from draft at O'Toole's on December 21, 2016. Tasted again on October 31, 2018. Look is dark red with a thin head. Notes of oak, cherry and toffee.

Dec 22, 2016
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Cylinsier from Pennsylvania

4.01/5  rDev +0.8%
look: 3.75 | smell: 4 | taste: 4 | feel: 4.25 | overall: 4


Pours a clear ruddy brown, white lacing for a head.

Smells of sourdough bread malts, tart cherry, and an oak finish.

Flavor is of cherry, almond, oak, sourdough, and fig. Mildly cloying sweetness, bordering on overripe fruit, probably the brandy.

Full syrupy body with tingly carbonation on the tongue.

Very interesting lager, lots of flavor here and not like any other beer I've had. I can only imagine this one would be divisive, a love-it-or-hate-it. I think it's pretty good and worth trying as something unique.

Oct 20, 2016
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Benish from Wisconsin

4.12/5  rDev +3.5%
look: 4 | smell: 4.5 | taste: 4 | feel: 4 | overall: 4

Appearance: poured a ruby red color with almost no head. Highly carbonated with bubbles all around the glass.

Aroma: it's 100% cherry cheese cake. Cherries and cream cheese at the nose. No notes of brandy barrels.

Taste: full sweet cherry flavor through out and finished with a slight oak flavor from the barrels. Mildly yogurty midway through. Malty throughout but not so sweet like other lagers.

Mouthfeel: highly carbonated with medium bodied mouthfeel.

Overall: quite an interesting beer. It's different and unique from others I tried. I think the fact that its a lager instead of an ale as the base beer for a cherry flavored barrel aged beer makes the difference. I liked it.

Oct 14, 2016
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woodychandler from Pennsylvania

4.26/5  rDev +7%
look: 4 | smell: 4.25 | taste: 4.25 | feel: 4.5 | overall: 4.25

How intriguing that Lakefront is doing a barrel-aged, fruit-infused beer series! I love these guys ever since my first visit in 2006. Their re-use of old dairy tanks is such a Midwestern idea & their rescue of the original Bernie Brewer on the demise of County Stadium was equally inspired. I really hope to be able to visit MKE & its environs in 2017.

From the bottle: "Lager brewed with Wisconsin cherries & aged in brandy barrels"; "Bottled On: 20 January 2017 - B3".

Apparently, I like to get a head start on these things, since it will not even be "officially" bottled for over three months, but I am a futuristic kind of guy. The only thing is, these bottles do not open themselves & so I began with the Pop!ping of the cap. My gentle pour was due to seeing some lees in the punt. I followed this up with an in-glass swirl, raising a brief finger of soapy, light-tan head that quickly fell back to wisps. Color was Deep Amber/Light Copper to Copper (SRM = > 13, < 17) with NE-quality clarity. Nose was very oaky with undertones of leather, stone fruits, fusel alcohol, vanilla and drying tobacco. Mouthfeel was big & full, like a dollop on my tongue. The taste was initially of tart cherries, a personal favorite, followed by leather, oak, & vanilla, accompanied by a mild fusel alcohol burn. This was not playing around, to be sure! I was really amazed that this was a lager at its base. The relative lack of carbonation really led to its increased intensity as it just laid on my tongue, almost daring me to swallow it. Phew! Finish was dry, more a construct of its ABV than anything else & I wonder what it might become with some age. If I can score another, I may put one in my cellar.

Oct 06, 2016
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FBarber from Illinois

3.72/5  rDev -6.5%
look: 3.75 | smell: 3.5 | taste: 3.75 | feel: 4 | overall: 3.75

Pours a cherry tinged red color with an off-white head. Head dissipates to a ring of white foam along the outside of the beer.

Smell has notes of sweet cherries and brandy with a hint of vanilla - smells a bit like cherry cough syrup.

Taste has notes of cherry, vanilla, tobacco, lots of brandy barrel character and oak. Slightly tart to my palette - from the cherries. Lots of sweetness. The barrel character is decently hot. Along with the heat there is a slight peppery/spicy finish to the beer. Some definite sweetness here - not overly sweet, but more along the lines of a dessert beer.

Feel is smooth with medium carbonation. Decent mouthfeel on this beer - the body has some oomph.

Overall its a really interesting and unique beer. I found it a bit too hot and the cherry was just not quite to my taste - I found it too sweet - too reminiscent of a tart cherry pie filling. Still though, worth a try.

Sep 10, 2016
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DrDemento456 from Pennsylvania

4.43/5  rDev +11.3%
look: 4.25 | smell: 4.25 | taste: 4.5 | feel: 4.5 | overall: 4.5

One of my favorite beers of the year so far I was even able to find it for $2.50 a bottle!

A - Hazy amber in color dark with a 1/2 inch of foam that settles to a mild lace ring.
S - Brandy, oak, wood, cherry juice and some caramel for good measure.
T - So smooth and flavorful I keep tasting maraschino cherries with a caramel glaze and I love it! Brandy is smooth and balanced in the back delivering mild oak and bitter hop finish.
M - Well you can't chug it is more of a desert beer but medium to heavy in body it makes for a great sipper!

Overall I got a four pack for tonight and may go back to mix another sixer! This beer shows that even a lager in the right hands can make for an epic beer!

Sep 06, 2016
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Ri0 from Wisconsin

4/5  rDev +0.5%
look: 4 | smell: 4 | taste: 4 | feel: 4 | overall: 4

Poured 12oz bottle into snifter. It has a deep ruby color with a 1 finger fizzy white head that quickly disappears. Aromas of brandy overtones, wood, vanilla, caramel, and fresh cherries. The taste is sweet with brandy and vanilla with caramel covered cherries. It is medium body and has some alcohol warmth to it. I had no idea what to expect, but I rather enjoyed this one even on a cool summer day. I think Lakefront knows how to age beer in brandy barrels.

Aug 21, 2016
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gobuccos from Ohio

4.04/5  rDev +1.5%
look: 4.25 | smell: 4 | taste: 4 | feel: 4.25 | overall: 4

After having the regular Cherry lager, was happy to grab this one. Smell is definitley boozy. Taste gives alot of booze with cherry on the finish. Will be aging a few to see the result. Definitley recommend letting this one age.

Aug 21, 2016
Cherry Lager - Brandy Barrel-Aged from Lakefront Brewery, Inc.
Beer rating: 86 out of 100 with 56 ratings