Luciérnaga, The Firefly | Jolly Pumpkin Artisan Ales

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Luciérnaga, The FireflyLuciérnaga, The Firefly
959 Ratings
Luciérnaga, The FireflyLuciérnaga, The Firefly

Brewed by:
Jolly Pumpkin Artisan Ales
Michigan, United States

Style: Belgian Pale Ale

Alcohol by volume (ABV): 6.50%

Availability: Summer

Notes / Commercial Description:

Added by putnam on 10-28-2004

Bros Score:
User Ratings & Reviews
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Ratings: 959 |  Reviews: 388
Photo of akorsak
4.05/5  rDev +0.2%
look: 4 | smell: 4 | taste: 4 | feel: 4.5 | overall: 4

On-tap at Ffej of July.

A: The pale ale is amber orange, a coppery color. More head than is good for anyone, the thick white foam clings and coagulates, taking a very long time to dissapate.

S: Funky horseblanket aromas, dirty brett, dominate, lending citrus and tartness to the mix. Lemons and fleshy fruits stand out.

T: Brett does a number on the ale, smoothing over biscuity malts with extreme recklessness. The brett dries the ale out, leaving tart citric acid flavors, maybe even a little acetic, behind. Lemons and vinegar, more of the former than the latter. Dry fruits, just a little sugary (the ale is quite dry, recall), add more flavor. In the end, though, it all comes back to the brett and how it completely controls the flavor profile. The tart recoil upfront and lingering lemon in the finish are nice.

M: The mouthfeel takes a bit of time to adjust to even though I've had the beer many times. That tartness is jarring, a refreshing citric blast.

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Photo of Kayn169
4.15/5  rDev +2.7%
look: 4.5 | smell: 4.5 | taste: 4 | feel: 4 | overall: 4

750ml bottle pour into a Duvel Tulip
Batch 788/790
Dated: 05/10/11

A- Absolutely beautiful hazy copper orange. Well carbonated with a 2.5 finger head. Light lacing that doesn't linger

S- This is one of my favorite parts of JP beers. A yeasty spice, familiar to most of their beers, with pineapple and maybe a little apricot, and/or unripened peach, mixed with a touch of vinegar. The funk is also upfront and personal, in a very nice way.

T- The flavors are very similar to the nose, except muted. The funk, spice, and vinegar all come through. The fruit turns from pineapple and apricot, to lemon, green grape, and green tart apple. One difference I noticed, while cold, I got some tangerine on the backend, that I did t detect as it warmed. I wouldn't really call is sour, but definitely tart. A touch more than the Oro De Calabaza. Finally, a clean dry finish, the only hint of a hop presence I noticed.

M- The carbonation results in a light in body and texture, yet a nice smoothness as it passed through my mouth.

O- Not the best JP beer available, but easy drinking, and tasty. The JP usual suspects are all here. Great spicy yeast, tartness, great flavor, and a simply high quality product. I really liked the additional spice in this one.

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Photo of billab914
4.09/5  rDev +1.2%
look: 3.5 | smell: 4.5 | taste: 4 | feel: 4 | overall: 4

750ml bottle into my Shipyard glass. Hazy and golden yellow in color with a thick white head nearly overflowing from the glass.

The aroma has a moderate funk to it with a little bit of a musty, slightly sour flavor coming through. I get a little malt sweetness and a Belgian yeast spice to it as well.

The taste shows more of the funky, musty flavors to it up front while more of the pale malts and belgian yeast come out towards the finish.

The mouthfeel is on the lighter side with carbonation being high. Overall it was a flavorful, easy drinking and complex beer. The sour, funky flavor really worked well for me. Very nice overall.

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Photo of sidetracked
3.85/5  rDev -4.7%
look: 3.5 | smell: 3.5 | taste: 4 | feel: 4 | overall: 4

On-tap at Map Room.

Cloudy orange in color with the denser area of the glass an orange-red. Cream head. Some initial lacing.

A vinegar sourness dominates the aroma.

Sour, white vinegar flavor upfront. Sourness gradually reduces through the middle to the end allowing the Pale Ale qualities of the beer to come out. Finish is bready malts and floral hops with a light bitterness. A little lingering sourness at the finish depending on how it's drunk.

Medium body, kind of bubbly but only moderate carbonation. Clean finish.

Quite enjoyable and interesting. Medium sourness that's balanced well enough to allow other flavors to come through. Great for a warmer day. I'd drink this again.


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Photo of Kadonny
3.95/5  rDev -2.2%
look: 4 | smell: 4 | taste: 4 | feel: 3.5 | overall: 4

Poured from bottle into a Duvel tulip glass.

A: A medium golden color with orange tint to it. A huge course head makes it hard to pour. Glass lacing is nice and full.

S: Fruits come out in the nose with a decent amount of barnyard funk. Some sweetness shines through with some floral hops.

T: The brett shows right away mixed with the fruits of the beer. Pear, apple and grape mix with funk of hay, straw and slight horse blanket. Not as much brett as on the smell. Some slight sweetness turns into a pretty nice tartness that finishes out the beer. Slight floral hops on the finish yield some bitterness.

M: I actually thought this was a bit thin. Maybe the lower abv has something to do with it. Still I was a bit disappointed not to mention the seemingly over-carbonation.

O: A good beer, but JP makes better ones. I get it, this is more of a drinker being a BPA with lower abv, and for that it does well.

Overall a good beer, but if I'm paying the price for a JP, I'm going to grab one of their better beers like LaRoja that has a ton more flavor and sourness going on. Still, a solid drinking beer.

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Photo of DaveHS
4.82/5  rDev +19.3%
look: 4.5 | smell: 5 | taste: 5 | feel: 4.5 | overall: 4.5

A-Pours rusty, hazy orange with a huge rocky head. Reduces slowly, leaving a big cap of foam and a zigzag pattern of sticky lacing.

S-Super funky with aromas of new American oak, grassy hops and grapefruit/tangerine skins. Mouth watering.

T/M-Everything promised in the nose is delivereed in the flavor profile. Funky, earthy brettanomyces and washed rind cheesiness, reminiscent of Cowgirl Creamery's Red Hawk. Hops are alternately earthy and grassy, and meld beautifully with the slick yeasty finish and vibrant, chewy carbonation.

O-One of the best wild ales I've had. Nearly perfect.

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Photo of scratch
3.97/5  rDev -1.7%
look: 4.5 | smell: 5 | taste: 3.5 | feel: 3 | overall: 4

These Jolly Pumpkins are wild. They're so carbonated, they practically pour themselves. I was ready for this one, but it still came gushing out like Mt. St. Helens.

It's a beauty to behold: frothy white head that could withstand a hail storm, and a brownish-orange body like you might find on a Chimay.

The smell is out of this world (the best part of the beer, I think). I'm getting pineapple and grapefruit right off the bat, but there's some spice in there too, and booze, and some definite funk too.

The taste is good, but not quite as good as what the smell promised. There's bitterness and tartness, like you get from grapefruit, and a little funk. I wish it was funkier though.

It's a cool beer overall. I'm glad to have tried it and will no doubt do so again sometime.

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Photo of rudzud
4.03/5  rDev -0.2%
look: 4.5 | smell: 4 | taste: 4 | feel: 4 | overall: 4

Picked up a 750mL at Julio's a while back, bottled on 4/28/10 batch #3. Poured into my Duvel tulip after it errupted all over my counter.

A - A big, rocky 3 finger head atop a deep, rich orange colour. Not quite clear with no particles evident. Big, thick side lacing too.

S - Great typical Jolly Pumpkin aromas here with that solid funky aroma mixed with those strong oak characteristics.

T - Much like the nose there is that tasty barrel notes along with sourness. Dont get much in the way of hops except for maybe a slght bitterness at the end. Doesnt really taste like a pale ale.

M - Low carbonation but remains crisp enough to go down easily. Very dry finish.

O - This really doesnt drink like a pale ale much more like a wild ale, which isnt a bad thing considering almost all Jolly Pumpkins drink like this.

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Photo of ChadQuest
4.15/5  rDev +2.7%
look: 4.5 | smell: 4.5 | taste: 4 | feel: 4 | overall: 4

ok, i was a bit annoyed at first when the bottle erupted, but i should have expected it with all the bugs roaming around in here, and this bottle proved worth it.
huge sticky head and lacing, hazy sunburst dark orange. Looks apealling, i am thirsty with a burning desire for funk, and this has the look that stokes the fire.
The aroma is awesome, it has a spicy yeast character with funk mixed with a rainy woodsy aroma, a great prequel to the first sip.
This beer keeps bringing the goods. There is more of a fruity character in the flavors from the yeast then there was in the aroma, incorperated into the spices and funk, but the funk is a team player in this beer, not the only contributor.

I really enjoyed this bottle, it was on the high side price wise, but then again it was cheaper then most any other wild ale 750ml i've seen, i will buy again, maybe get one to hide away and let the bugs work for a few years, really neat beer.

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Photo of biga7346
3.48/5  rDev -13.9%
look: 4 | smell: 3.5 | taste: 3.5 | feel: 3 | overall: 3.5

Slight fruit, apricot, leathery notes in the nose followed by pear, honeycrisp apple, red wine sourness (JP's common theme from their 100% oak aged beers), champagne-like spritziness, low carbonation, a little dry tannins.

This beer is very drinkable, perfect for very hot humid weather, a refreshing apertif. Having had the Bambic in January and then having had this I can see some similarities. Mouthfeel was velvety, slick. Again, a very refreshing but nothing really lingered in the finish.

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Photo of micmillon18
3.9/5  rDev -3.5%
look: 4 | smell: 4 | taste: 4 | feel: 4 | overall: 3.5

Poured from a 750 ml bottle into a tulip. "Blend 3. Bottled 4/28/10." Jolly Pumpkin knows how to do good bottle art, this one being no different.

A - I was greeted by a slow foam rising upon opening the bottle. Jolly Pumpkin beers, with their wild yeast, are known to be ultra carbonated, especially those that have seen good shelf, like this one. The pour was tricky, as I got a ton of foam even after a conservative pour. A light golden color, the massively thick and chunky head takes center stage here. It doesn't quit either, taking quite along time actually start dissipating. Huge chunks of lacing follow the beer down the glass.

S - Bubblegum, lemon/ sour citrusiness. Clean and crisp. A good smelling beer with full aroma.

T - Sour citrusy flavors upfront, like that of grapefruit, with other fruits (apple?). Funky and tangy. Slightly yeasty with a good finishing hop bitterness on the end. The after taste is slightly off and I unfortunately can't place my finger on it. It finishes dry though I won't stack the aftertaste up to that. Tasty in a very funky way.

M - Medium to light bodied. Carbonation is perfect. Dry.

O - Having no experience with this beer prior, I can't decide whether the year of age helped or hurt it. The sour notes typical of JP are still very present and the funky fruitiness is a real treat. A pretty good brew and one to pair with a spring day.

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4.35/5  rDev +7.7%
look: 4.5 | smell: 4.5 | taste: 4 | feel: 5 | overall: 4.5

Review from notes taken August 20th, 2010. $7.50 for a 10.5oz pour.

A: A huge foamy/frothy bright white head lasts impossibly long and forces the bartender to push most of it out a few minutes later with another pour. The head sticks in finely woven sheets on every surface possible. (Lacing continues nicely later but with less consistency.) The body is hazy, lightly golden orange in color and surprisingly opaque. The beer acts as a diffuser when backlit which further increases its hazy appearance.

S: Oak is immediately noticeable on the nose as is the trademark Jolly Pumpkin wild yeast strain. Light summer-y fruit esters create notes of pear, white or yellow melon and cantellope. Very clean. Minimally hoppy on the nose, but...

T: adequate bitterness is present on the palate. The flavor falls short of expectations and is slightly less complex than the nose led me to believe. Stunning flavor on the front end of the palate but Luciérnaga finishes premature, abruptly and very dry at the end.

M: The body is medium-light with a texture leaning closer to thin than thick. Crisp, clean, perfectly carbonated and extremely refreshing. Damn near perfect mouthfeel.

O: Ron is a master of subtle sourness and incorporating everything oak has to offer to the flavor and mouthfeel of his beers. This one is no exception and comes highly recommended.

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Photo of ColForbinBC
3.75/5  rDev -7.2%
look: 4 | smell: 4 | taste: 3.5 | feel: 3.5 | overall: 4

Blend #2, bottled on 4.29.10
Poured into a tulip

A little gush, but nothing that wasn't manageable. Very foamy, slightly off white cap that rose quickly to fill the glass and slow to recede. Leaving good amounts of lace behind. Underneath the cap, there is a bright orange body that is full of bubbles flying north.

You can smell the sour, tart funk from across the room. It leaps out of the glass and permeates the air. Aromas of allspice and cinnamon with a pleasant flowery note laying underneath all this funk.

The tartness isn't nearly as prominent on the palate. Perfumey/flowery, almost orchard like. Soft and pleasant with a touch of faint pepper and orange rind. Not nearly as bold and assertive as the nose would let on, but good nonetheless.

Smooth, lighter body with a dry, flowery finish.

Overall, I found this to be a pretty decent beer. Not sure if being a year old helped or hurt.

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Photo of ktrillionaire
4.23/5  rDev +4.7%
look: 4.5 | smell: 4 | taste: 4 | feel: 4 | overall: 5

Batch 387/388

A - It pours a radiant golden-copper hue and is crowned with way way way too much head. After a few minutes, the head settles enough to drink, but this is pretty ridiculous. The lace deposits look like glacial ice shelves, and the top of my beer looks like a depiction in miniature of an Antarctic coastal scene.

S - It's all JP funk, which is basically a medicinal aroma that smells like hospital sterilization coupled with green apple, Bartlett pear, and aloe vera.

T - Flavor-wise, the funk makes a more subtle impact than it does with the aroma. The brew still has some nuance of iodine tincture in furtherance of the impressions of the nose, but the BPA characteristics are solidly discernible. Pale-pils maltiness, grassy hop and perhaps some spicy wheat notes are well-placed, and they lend a sour-spicy twang that does well to accomodate the yeast-imparted flavors.

M - Softly (and substantially) carbonated, just about at medium-bodied (for a pale brew) and with a long and pleasurable finish.

D - Ridiculously drinkable. I would've liked a bit more intensity from the flavor, but that's about all.

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Photo of SirSketch
4.77/5  rDev +18.1%
look: 4.5 | smell: 5 | taste: 4.5 | feel: 5 | overall: 5

A huge, mountain of a head. The beer was a bit of a gusher out of the bottle. Hazy gold to orange color.

The aroma is simply amazing! Complex malt, apples, orange zest, spicy yeast and a tangy sourness make up the smell. The taste begins with a very earthy, woody malt, followed by a slight sourness. The coriander and other spices come later. Freshly made bread and a little musty hop flavor, too.

For how complex the aroma and flavor are, the dry finish and lively carbonation make this beer insanely drinkable. Absolutely a world class beer!

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Photo of Jesse13713
3.21/5  rDev -20.5%
look: 4 | smell: 3 | taste: 3 | feel: 2.5 | overall: 4

Blend 5 - Bottled 5-14-10

Appearance - I accidentally hit this bottle against a chair a few minutes before opening, which could have been cause for the six fingers of head that this poured. Yep, I had to add my other hand to measure it. I got about an inch of actual alcohol before my snifter was almost overflowing. The foam is very concentrated and soap-like with a huge mound on top. It pours a caramel orange with slight transparency.

Smell - This beer smells of light wheat and lemon. Quite sour and tart with citrus notes. Light barley and malts linger in the background as well. Very light notes of champagne and yeast.

Taste - A surprisingly lacking and disappointing taste. I was really let down by the intensity of this taste. It isn't sour or tart; it's just watery and light bodied. Perhaps aged a little too long. The description of spices on the bottle led me ot believe this would be a spicy and sour beer. I am trying to review this beer for what it ended up being, but it's overall taste just isn't all that interesting. It is bland and boring.

Mouthfeel / Drinkability - Slightly tart and bitter; but is extremely light bodied as I stated. No real tastes stand out and nothing makes this beer anything spectacular or special. Fairly average and my least favorite Jolly Pumpkin brew.

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Photo of warnerry
4.1/5  rDev +1.5%
look: 4 | smell: 4 | taste: 4 | feel: 4 | overall: 4.5

Notes from 6/21/10; Blend 3 bottled 4/28/10

Pours a cloudy golden color with two fingers of head, leaving thick lacing behind.

Smell is nice but somewhat subtle. Light nose with coriander and sour notes.

Nice persistent hoppiness in the taste with a lot of earthiness as well.

High carbonation with light to medium mouthfeel Some earthiness lingers on the tongue; pretty dry.

High drinkability, though the earthy bitterness can be a bit much after awhile.

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Photo of Dreadnaught33
4.2/5  rDev +4%
look: 4.5 | smell: 4.5 | taste: 4 | feel: 4.5 | overall: 4

A: A huge bubbly head appears immediately upon pouring and stays that way for a while. A nice dull copper color with some brown hues in the center of the body.

S: A very nice farmhouse musty smell with some nice citrus rind tart notes and dry grape like champagne notes as well. Some grassy hop notes and some bread loaf yeast smells. Nice, very nice for this style with layers of complexity.

T: A nice taste with definite citrus like tartness and brett notes, some bready biscuity fruits as well. A very clean lemony start and finish is pleasing. Some faint hop earth tastes are present with strains of belgian yeast. Again a dry champagne grape and white wine taste comes in like the smell. I like this, but it isn't as complex as I expected.

M: A very nice carbonated and spritzy feel goes well with the tartness and grassy hops in the beer. Medium feel.

D: A nice beer overall from Jolly Pumpkin, kind of on par or a little over par for their type of brett tinged belgian farmhouse style.

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Photo of goatgoat
4.27/5  rDev +5.7%
look: 4 | smell: 4.5 | taste: 4 | feel: 4.5 | overall: 4.5

Batch 1, poured into tulip.

Cloudy orange amber. A mounding slightly tan head. Good retention and nice lace. Aroma is sweet, intense with tropical fruits and a slight floral character. Almost juicy. Overlaid with a tart brightness. Taste is softer than the nose at first, then moves into a long finish that nicely combines bitter and tart qualities. Medium body with lots of carbonation. Very drying.

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Photo of corby112
3.39/5  rDev -16.1%
look: 4.5 | smell: 3 | taste: 3.5 | feel: 4 | overall: 3

From notes:

Pours a hazy dark golden orange/amber color with a large, two finger frothy, off-white head with very good retention, only slowly fading into a lasting ring. Large chunks of lacing left behind.

Spicy aroma with sweet citrus and light fruit notes as well as some subtle hops ans sweet alcohol. Hints of pepper and coriander along with some orange peel, apple and pear in the nose.

Medium bodied, slightly tart and puckering with a bit of earthy oak, zesty spice, sweet fruit and mild alcohol. Tight carbonation with subtle earthy oak which is countered by spicy pepper and coriander as well as sweet citrus peel, apple and pear. Dry finish.

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Photo of Swimsum
3.83/5  rDev -5.2%
look: 4 | smell: 3.5 | taste: 4 | feel: 3.5 | overall: 4

Blend 2, bottled 4/29/2010. Poured into a NB Globe.

Well this is generously carbonated. Takes forever to pour this due to the huge head that forms in the glass. The head is very dense and thick foam. The body is a nice golden copper color. When held to the light it is brilliant gold but hazy. Once head finally begins to recede (to about a 1/4" layer), some lacing is left but not as much as I was expecting.

Fruity nose with some coriander spice to back it up. I can't exactly pick out what fruit smells I'm getting here though. For me it smells pretty much like what I expect a Belgian pale to smell like.

The spice plays a much larger role here than in the smell. While it isn't the coriander that is giving much of the spice it is there. Not sure what the other spice is that is coming through. After the spice, there are some fruity esters that come through (not unpleasant but not great). At times I also get some alcohol taste coming though, not liking that.

Even though the head on this never goes away, I'm not getting a ton of carbonation in the liquid. Medium bodied and when I don't get the alcohol taste, this goes down pretty well.

This is pretty drinkable and went down easily. The spices aren't overkill and the fruitiness balances it nicely. I've only had a couple JP beers but looking forward to trying the ones I haven't had yet. If you're a fan of the style, I'd pick this up.

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Photo of BieresDesMoines
3.88/5  rDev -4%
look: 4 | smell: 3.5 | taste: 4 | feel: 3 | overall: 4.5

Pours a hazy blonde with a big head and some lace. The aroma is hoppy and earthy with some fruity notes, reminds me a bit of Orval in this sense. The flavor has a nice character of fruity hopes and a mild malt sweetness, but the beer is dominantly dry. There is a very mild tartness here but generally the beer is dominated by a blend between some spicy yeast notes and pleasant hop bitterness.

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Photo of Bendurgin
4/5  rDev -1%
look: 4 | smell: 4 | taste: 4 | feel: 4 | overall: 4

Poured this into a tulip. Lots of head on this one that looks like a big pile of mashed potatoes with really drawn out retention. More head than beer in the initial pour so it's kind of frustrating but it settles eventually leaving a nice hazy straw colored beer with a bit of sediment sitting on the bottom. I probably should have been more gentle on the pour. The beer also has big thick chunks of soapy lacing. Orange zest comes to mind on the aroma and there's a bit of funkiness to this one. With that bitter hops are present as well. The taste is slightly tart to begin but it seems to mellow out after a few sips revealing a candied citrus sweetness and slight bitter finish. The mouthfeel is relatively light with ample carbonation and kind of a dry finish. Overall, highly drinkable and a really nice beer, I just wish Jolly Pumpkin beers weren't so damn expensive.

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Photo of impending
3.74/5  rDev -7.4%
look: 3.5 | smell: 4.5 | taste: 3.5 | feel: 3.5 | overall: 3.5

La Trappe. Poured a nice dull coppery gold. Great lacing.

Funk while not too overt is yet a dominant scent, spices and under ripe white fruits. Obvious hops.

Light and prickly body. Taste of citrus, hints of grapefruit. Finishes dry and ever so slightly tart.

Taste does not live up to the aroma which is very nice.
Wish I liked this more.

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Photo of Neffbeer
4.28/5  rDev +5.9%
look: 4.5 | smell: 4 | taste: 4 | feel: 4.5 | overall: 5

Nice golden color with excellent head retention. Small white caps form with a ton of lacing as it recedes. The smell is of citrus, grass, oak, and belgian yeast. It is a little "yardy" in a really good way. This beer tastes very similarly to the smell with the citrus right up front followed by a bretty/woody dryness. The mouth feel is light and effervescent with a dry, sour finish, really great. I could drink this beer over and over. Cheers.

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Luciérnaga, The Firefly from Jolly Pumpkin Artisan Ales
Beer rating: 4.04 out of 5 with 959 ratings