Calabaza Blanca | Jolly Pumpkin Artisan Ales

very good
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Calabaza BlancaCalabaza Blanca

Brewed by:
Jolly Pumpkin Artisan Ales
Michigan, United States

Style: Witbier

Alcohol by volume (ABV): 4.80%

Availability: Year-round

Notes / Commercial Description:
No notes at this time.

Added by BeerAdvocate on 09-25-2004

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Ratings: 986 |  Reviews: 461
Photo of WhiteOak
2.87/5  rDev -26.4%
look: 3.5 | smell: 4 | taste: 2 | feel: 3 | overall: 3

A- Golden-white color with a slight haze. The white head falls quickly.

S- Smells nice with big, upfront aromas of wheat, yeast, orange peel, coriander. The smell is alluring, but what follows is a let-down.

T- Shrill, unpleasant tartness and Brett character dominates the palate mercilessly, along with a powdery yeastiness and a grassy hop finish.

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Photo of TheWhiskerReview
4.72/5  rDev +21%
look: 4 | smell: 4.5 | taste: 5 | feel: 5 | overall: 4.5

Batch 744. Bottled 3-2-2011

Pours a solid, hazy gold that looks like the exact shade of lemon-meringue pie filling. Dense soapy white head, 2 fingers, which recedes completely about the same time the yeast sediment from the bottom starts making a more pronounced presence.

Nose starts with a light malt aroma of white bread, joined by a vanilla creaminess and musty, tart lemon notes. As more of the sediment joins the brew, the bright tartness mellows and nicely joins the yeasty spiciness. The coriander is really coming through now.

The palate is great too- moderate sweetness and an overall light body. The low alcohol coupled with the bright carbonation give it an almost Champagne-like feel- very refreshing. Big notes of meyer lemon and spices, and a finish with just the right amount of tartness- the kind of tartness that a good orange juice has, makes ya finish the carton waaay to fast.

With 'Calabaza' in its name, you have to assume its related in some way to the Oro de Calabaza. And with its brightness, lemony flavors and musty funk, it's basically a much more sessionable Calabaza, which makes me like it even more. The flavors work much better when they're lighter on their feet.

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Photo of mjyoung
3.73/5  rDev -4.4%
look: 4 | smell: 3.5 | taste: 3.5 | feel: 4.5 | overall: 4

Split w/ bbb099. Drank 5/5/2011

A: A hazy lemonade color, with an incredibly thick and foamy head that dissipated VERY slowly.

S: Sour citrus? I honestly was not expecting to be hit with lemonade, but there ya go.

T: Remarkably smooth, but with a light hint of sour. Nothing to pucker the mouth over though. The aftertaste is a bit tart. It's hard to characterize this beer.

M: Very airy and dry. Not a bad feel when all is said and done, but not expected. It's incredibly smooth, light, and oddly refreshing. I dig it.

O: Unfortunately I'm drinking it while eating a burrito, so I'm sorry Jolly Pumpkin. I like the beer a lot, and would definitely drink it again in a different setting. Solid.

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Photo of kwjd
4.03/5  rDev +3.3%
look: 4.5 | smell: 4 | taste: 4 | feel: 4 | overall: 4

Pours a cloudy yellow colour with incredibly huge pillowy, white head. Lots of lacing around the glass. Smells of spices, orange, some tartness and Belgian yeast. Flavour has some typical witbier flavours, with a lot of tartness, but not quite sour. Flavour is still light and refreshing. Really big carbonation level. A really nice tart witbier.

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Photo of EORS
3.53/5  rDev -9.5%
look: 4 | smell: 3.5 | taste: 3.5 | feel: 3.5 | overall: 3.5

Poured from a 750ML bottle (bottled 10/2010) into a heifeweizen glass.

Appearance: Hazy and ultra pale-to dandelion. Highly carbonated. As the beer sat the color got darker, finally settling on a light golden color. Towering lacy white head that retained very well. When the bottle was uncapped and a full glass poured, the remaining head inside still reached the top of the bottle.

Smell: Dry and cidery, with some sour citrus and grain. Coriander and spices must be hidden under there somewhere.

Taste: Again, tart-to-sour and dry, with some earthy spice underneath. Wish I could taste more of the spice and mellow grain. Crisp, but still tart, aftertaste.

Mouthfeel: For such a highly carbonated beer, it has a nice body and avoids feeling too thin and watery.

Overall: A well-made beer, but a bit too dry and tart for my taste. I didn't get the spiciness that I was really hoping for, as this beer seemed to veer more towards a saison taste than a nice mellow wit. That, combined with the fairly steep price tag (still $9.99 even on sale), means I won't be looking to buy it again anytime soon.

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Photo of
4.03/5  rDev +3.3%
look: 4.5 | smell: 4 | taste: 4 | feel: 4 | overall: 4

Appearance - Pours a hazy, pale yellow with a rocky white head that dissipates slowly, leaving nice lacing along the glass.
Aroma is earthy with sour apple, citrus and spice notes.
Soft on the palate, refreshingly tart, and spicy with a dry oaky finish.

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Photo of elginirishpunk
4.87/5  rDev +24.9%
look: 4.5 | smell: 5 | taste: 5 | feel: 4 | overall: 5

A - Poured from a 750ml into Pint glass. Decent amount of foam that too a while to settle. Very cloudy.

S- Strong smell of citrus and spices, with a light sweetness.

T- Smooth and sweet with a hints of all the different spices which can be indiviually identified.

M- Smooth and no bittlerness

Vergy good beer for the style. And nice to see from a brewer I have not heard quite a lot about.

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Photo of russpowell
4.51/5  rDev +15.6%
look: 5 | smell: 4 | taste: 4.5 | feel: 4.5 | overall: 5

Batch 323 pours an effervescent light gold color with 3 fingers of cream colored head. Some yeast sludge clings to the inside of the bottle top... Hazes a bit as the bottle drains, superior head retention & & insane lacing

S: Grainyness & sourness, coriander & lemons in lesser amounts

T: Follows the nose, some lemon zest as well & chalky dryness up front, a touch of coriander & white pepper as well. Lemon zest & sourness as this warms, plus dryness, Finishes zesty, citrussy, with a touch of lemon grass

MF: Light bodied, creamy & a slight grainyness

Very drinkable, not a fan of all Jolly Pumpkin offerings, but this one is very refreshing, a great example of the style & maybe my favorite from these guys

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Photo of TheManiacalOne
3.9/5  rDev 0%
look: 3.5 | smell: 3.5 | taste: 4 | feel: 4.5 | overall: 4

Poured from a 750ml bottle (Batch 313) into an imperial pint glass.

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

S: The aroma contains sour citrus, Belgian yeast, some spice, light malts and a touch of hops.

T: The taste starts out with tart and acidic flavors of lemon and other citrus fruits that are quickly followed by wild Belgian yeast and a thin malt character. There is some mild spice in the background along with a faint but complementary hops presence creating a good balance. The after-taste is slightly sour and slightly sweet.

M: Smooth and very crisp, light-to-medium body, medium carbonation, finish is very clean.

D: Tasty, goes down quite easily, not too filling, mild kick, good representation of style, this is a very solid, poundable, light, Belgian-style beer worth drinking for a long time.

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Photo of mmercede
3.86/5  rDev -1%
look: 4 | smell: 3 | taste: 4.5 | feel: 4 | overall: 3.5

750ml bottle served at the Kite and Key.

Appearance: pure gold with a sizable fluffy head. Some haze, but not much. The head retention was great

Smell: orange zest, pine, funk, belgian yeast. A nice aroma but surprisingly weak .

Taste: Not nearly as reserved as the aroma. A nice lactic tartness and funky undertones. Spiced flavors of orange zest, nutmeg, black pepper, and general belgian yeast flavors. Wheaty grain flavors throughout. Some nice complexity.

Mouthfeel: Nice medium body with strong, but appropriate carbonation.

Drinkability: Goes down easy and is quite refreshing. Money is the only issue with this one.

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Photo of CMB2012
4.22/5  rDev +8.2%
look: 4 | smell: 4.5 | taste: 4 | feel: 4 | overall: 4.5

750ml bottle poured into pint glass.

Pours a bright cloudy gold with a very thick starch white head which dissipates in a slow puffy fashion.

Smells of lemon/lime citrus with a strong Belgian yeastyness. Sweet tarts and bubble gum, pungent wheat.

The beer has a very powerful up front taste with a sharp tangy kick that is reminiscent of champagne. Finishes very clean with lingering citrus notes.

The mouthfeel is again similar to champagne with lots of lovely carbonation.

A very drinkable beer and I wish I had more! Jolly Pumpkin has yet to disappoint.

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Photo of vandemonian
3.66/5  rDev -6.2%
look: 4.5 | smell: 3.5 | taste: 3.5 | feel: 3.5 | overall: 4

Jolly Pumpkin Calabaza Blanca had a yellow colour and an awesome 7 mm head that lasted the whole time I drank it. The smell was unimpressive: like sour apples. The flavour was similar to the smell and reminded me of apple cider with some slight bitterness. It was ok, but I didn't love it. The carbonation was fast and the bubbles were large, like you find in soda. This seemed more like a cider than a beer to me.

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Photo of bootlegger1929
4.4/5  rDev +12.8%
look: 4.5 | smell: 4.5 | taste: 4.5 | feel: 4.5 | overall: 4

I've had several JP brews. This one is quite good. I enjoy it overall probably better than the others I've had. Still need to try bam bier though..

Poured into my tulip glass. Has a wonderful billowy head that recedes to a thin one that lingers throughout the drink. Has minimal lacing on the glass. Looks a cloudy yellow-orange. Pretty enticing to me.

Smells of typical wonderful JP funk with lemon, orange and a bit of spice.

Tastes great. Tart and funk up front with the fruits in the middle and ends with more funk. The funk lingers a bit as well as per the other JP beers I've tried. At first this seemed an odd flavor to me but it's certainly grown on me and I like it a lot now.

Smooth and medium mouthfeel that makes this really nice to drink. I like the carbonation level quite a bit as well. I like how it drinks but I'd rather sip it, like I would other funky beers.

Nice beer from a great brewery. Not a typical wit per se but still solid. If you don't like funk I would probably stay away from this.

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Photo of Gobzilla
4/5  rDev +2.6%
look: 4 | smell: 4 | taste: 4 | feel: 4 | overall: 4

A: poured a translucent pale golden yellow in color with a huge 3 finger head and great retention leaving lots of frothy lacing sticking to the glass.

S: the signature jolly pumpkin bretty funky character showed up first on the nose with some spices, citrus, and herbal notes but had mild grain notes as well.

T: the spices and coriander flavors were more apparent on the palate alongside citrus, bretty funky, tart, grainy and slight herbal accents.

M: the brew was medium in body with a good amount of tingly carbonation which had a spice, bretty, funky, tart, and citrusy finish.

D: it drank good and was a signature jolly pumpkin take on a style. Another one in the book.

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Photo of BigMike
3.98/5  rDev +2.1%
look: 4 | smell: 3.5 | taste: 4 | feel: 4 | overall: 4.5

Batch 590/591 Bottled 7/21/10

A: Pours a very pale straw yellow. Very hazy with a huge amount of fluffy white colored head that hangs around forever.

S: Lots of funky lemon grass and clove.

T: Im not the biggest witbier fan but this one has good qualities. The oak aging comes thru with some slight woodiness. There's a nice light amount of funk and tartness that keeps things interesting. Nothing mouth puckering but adds a nice dimension. Lots of lemon and grassiness. Cloves and corriander round out the spiciness.

M: Very light bodied. Tons of effervecense tingling the tongue. Very very refreshing.

Overall: My first beer from Jolly Pumpkin. Nothing earth shattering but they have definitely peeked my interest. I'm looking into to trying some of their other available offerings. This beer would be perfectly at home on a hot summer day.

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Photo of JoEBoBpr
3.93/5  rDev +0.8%
look: 4 | smell: 3.5 | taste: 4 | feel: 3.5 | overall: 4.5

Poured into a tulip glass from a 750ml bottle. Batch 298.

A - Pours a nice straw slightly golden color with some nice slight haze. There is a 1 inch head that is white and recedes at a medium pace. The head recedes to a thin malt with some sticky lacing on the sides of the glass.

S - Slight lemon peel tart and nice yeast funk. Nice bready malt aroma with some slight grain and wheat and a mild sweetness. The nose is quite mellow.

T & M - Crisp and clean flavors. There is some nice bready malt along with some nice wheat hints in the beer. The wheat has some sweet notes with it that together with the yeast turns into a slightly clove spice flavor. The lemon peel tartness is still there and there is also some nice funk to the beer as many of the JP Ales do. The beer is nice and mellow but still has some good flavors to it. The tartness is well balanced with the more bready wheat notes. It is very crisp and carbonated. Is say it could use lesser carbonation. Still its good.

D - drinkability is good because it has lower ABV and some good flavors.

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Photo of armock
4.3/5  rDev +10.3%
look: 4 | smell: 4 | taste: 4.5 | feel: 4 | overall: 4.5

On-tap @ Downtown Johny Brown's

A - Poured a hazed yellow color with a white head that leaves lacing behind

S - Is of citrus wheat funk and yeast

T - Follows the nose with citrus wheat funk yeast and some tartness

M - This beer has a light body with higher carbonation to it

D - This is one of my favorite Jolly Pumpkin beers tastes great and I could drink this one all day long worth hunting down to try

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Photo of ptykozoon
3.46/5  rDev -11.3%
look: 4 | smell: 3 | taste: 3.5 | feel: 3 | overall: 4

Straw yellow, bubbly, soapy head. Great lacing.

Fresh fruit, spice, apricot. Nothing extraordinary.

A lot of orange peel, neutral hops, lemon and an earthiness.

Decent carbonation, slight wateriness to the taste. Clean finish

Great on a hot day, earthy and refreshing.

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Photo of arboristfish
1.66/5  rDev -57.4%
look: 4 | smell: 3 | taste: 1 | feel: 1 | overall: 1

The beer pours a pale straw yellow hazy color. There wasnt any head on this beer, and when I opened it there wasnt that noticeable KSHH sound to it. Hopefully it isnt a bad bottle. The smell is of sweet malt, and hints of orange peel and spices. The beer has a very sour bad funk to it. This has to be infected. Looking at the bottle cap there is a bulge on the bottom. Like a blister with something kind of dirt looking stuff in it. Gonna have to try this again...

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4.63/5  rDev +18.7%
look: 5 | smell: 4.5 | taste: 4.5 | feel: 4.5 | overall: 5

Draft pour served in 10.5 oz tulip for $7. Barrel-aged witbier

A: Served with a finger and a half of a dense bright white foamy head. Incredible retention. Even after 30 minutes, the head is persisting. The body is the palest light yellow-orange-gold combination with very little transparency, even when held to light. Very active streamers line the glass, which is already filled with madly rushing bubbles keeping the height of the cap steady. No wait...the head is actually gaining height, lasting for the entire length of the brew.

S & T: The nose is awesome. Tart, mildly sour, faintly funky and it provides great expectation for the flavor to come. The oak plays perfectly off of the aroma profile and somehow even better off of the flavor. Impeccable incorporation. Bit of lemon, hints of vanilla cream, orange peel and coriander. Sour twang with medium length flavor duration and ending with orange-lemon acidity.

M: The mouthfeeel has a buggy bite to it that is most aggressive at the beginning and rounds out around midpalate so that the flavors are the only thing left to be experienced on the back end. I'm assuming the brewer used Lactobacillus as the yeast strain.

D: The Calablaza Blanca is the best witbier [or variation of a witbier] that I've ever had and I believe it deserves more credit than the ratings would lead one to believe. Much more. Phenomenally brew.

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Photo of zoso1967
3.78/5  rDev -3.1%
look: 4.5 | smell: 4 | taste: 3 | feel: 4.5 | overall: 4.5

Pours a medium golden color with a bright white head that is super fluffy and light. The head has superb staying power and leaves splashy and delicate lace.

The aroma is sweetly fragrant and floral with some lemon notes, spice and a major dose of funk. The earthy cellar notes elbow out most of the pale malt character.

Wow, this is seriously funky up front. Very tart with a bit of cellar to it. It has a very crisp acidity to it and plenty of lemon zest as well as just a touch of spice that makes it through all that funkiness. The malt character is pretty buried by all the wild yeast and I find that this beer is lacking a bit as a result. It tastes pretty good, just a bit one dimensional.

The mouthfeel is fairly light with a good amount of bubbly carbonation and a tart, drying finish that is very refreshing. The mouthfeel is by far one of the best aspects of this brew.

Very drinkable and super refreshing. This would be very welcomed in the summer, or with a nice piece of whitefish. I cannot help wondering what could have been if they had dialed down the funk a little bit. However, I think this is a good example of a beer where the sum is greater than that of the parts.

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Photo of alleykatking
4.01/5  rDev +2.8%
look: 4.5 | smell: 3.5 | taste: 4 | feel: 4 | overall: 4.5

Poured from a 750ml bottle.

A- Pours a hazy golden yellowish orange color. Two finger white head shows good retention before leaving lots of clingy, streaky lacing on the sides of the glass. Couldn't ask for more with this beer to be honest.

S- Faint. Lemony with a hint of floral aromas. There was a coriander in the middle of this with some light vinegar like notes. You can tell this was going to be sour just not how much.

T- Citrus flavors upfront with a vinegar like sourness. Not overly sour but enough to let you know it's in there. A light earthy hop in the backing. There is a light lemon flavor throughout but way in the background.

M- Medium mouthfeel. Carbonation is good for the style. Light sour notes and lemon left on the palate. Alcohol and light hop bite in the backing iwth a touch of sourness. Flavors were blended but faint at the same time. Medium drying on the palate from the alcohol.

D- I found this to be very very drinkable. The beer itself was good but not great. The sour notes were lovely and made the beer for me. Not a lot of oaky notes which I also expected. Jolly Pumpkin you made another good drinking beer.

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Photo of Soilworker
3.97/5  rDev +1.8%
look: 4 | smell: 4.5 | taste: 4 | feel: 3.5 | overall: 3.5

A: Cloudy orange-yellow color with a two finger off-white head.

S: Strong tart orange and lemon notes right up front supported by a base of coriander and other spices. There is a spicey yeast aroma to go along with all of that that I really enjoy. This one has a great nose on it.

T: Starting off somewhat like the nose there is some tart (almost sour) orange and lemon flavors accomponied by an interesting blend of malts and spices. The tartness of this beer really makes it a funky witbier in my opinion.

M: Quite carbonated, a little too much in my opinion. Light bodied overall.

D: Like a said before, this beer is pretty funky so not sure I could drink this all night but I could definitely have a few.

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Photo of nova009
4.12/5  rDev +5.6%
look: 4 | smell: 4.5 | taste: 4 | feel: 4 | overall: 4

Poured from a bomber into a Duvel tulip

A- pours a golden pale yellow, very hazy, a very foamy two finger white head, retains well, basically no lacing whatsoever

S- lots of funk coming out of this one, nice and tart smelling, orange and lemon, nice coriander notes too, yeast, its making my mouth water

T- tart but not overly so, orange peel and lemon notes right up front, slight spiciness mixes in with the tart citrus, nice dry taste really makes it noticeable as a witbier, you can barely taste any alcohol

M- light bodied like a good witbier, nice carbonation, crisp and refreshing

D- crisp, clean, and refreshing, really easy to drink, however i would like to have seen more of a tart flavor in this one

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Photo of chefkevlar
4.2/5  rDev +7.7%
look: 4 | smell: 4 | taste: 4.5 | feel: 4 | overall: 4

This bottle was underfilled slightly but didn't seem to be leaking...

A: Pours a hazy golden orange color with a thick layer of head which quickly subsides to a thin topping.

S: Apricot, clove, honey and yeast are the dominate scents

T: Citrus and sweet fruit up front with a nice smooth middle and a dry slightly tart/funky (in a good way)finish. There are hints of spice and honey also.

M: Medium bodied with a finely textured carbonation

D: Very drinkable and enjoyable. The flavors are complex without being overwhelming

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Calabaza Blanca from Jolly Pumpkin Artisan Ales
3.9 out of 5 based on 986 ratings.
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