Bière De Mars | Jolly Pumpkin Artisan Ales

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Bière De MarsBière De Mars

Brewed by:
Jolly Pumpkin Artisan Ales
Michigan, United States

Style: Bière de Garde

Alcohol by volume (ABV): 7.00%

Availability: Spring

Notes / Commercial Description:
No notes at this time.

Added by BeerAdvocate on 08-05-2005

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Reviews: 223 | Ratings: 687
Photo of damienblack
2.36/5  rDev -43.1%
look: 4 | smell: 3 | taste: 2 | feel: 3 | overall: 1.5

Batch 346/348, for reference.

Pours a very dark brown, pruney almost. Odd for a BdM or BdG. Slight head, quickly dissipates. Smells hugely vinegaric - like an absolute sour bomb with nothing else in it. Like a Oud Bruin with no balance to it whatsoever, no malt for balance. Wearily, I try a sip. It goes beyond vinegaric to downright offensive - with this style though, I don't know if they were shooting for a sour bomb, or if it has an infection (given the yeasts they go for). I think I made it about 3 sips with this before drainpouring the rest. I'm going to check into it, and will edit the review if it is not supposed to be like this.

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Photo of ShrLSU
2.65/5  rDev -36.1%
look: 3 | smell: 3 | taste: 2.5 | feel: 2.5 | overall: 2.5

A- Poured a dark orange amber color with a decent head which thinned out after pouring and settling.

S- A bit sweet with some fruitiness to it. A bit of pear and apple scent.

T-SOUR....very sour. I almost can't get past the first taste and the sour bite. No sweetness at all like the nose would lead you to believe.

M- Sour and tart. Tingle of carbonation

D- Overall a sour beer. I'm no fan of this style. i guess you really have to like sour beer to enjoy this. i sure didn't.

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Photo of AndoBrew
2.86/5  rDev -31.1%
look: 4 | smell: 3 | taste: 2.5 | feel: 3 | overall: 3

*want to like, would not buy, unless someone made me sure i had a bad bottle*

app: hues of the red planet itself. nice looking, good head! lost half the bottle to an eruption tthough.

smell: some pepper some tart some chemical blonde yeast butter malt smell as well, odd.

taste: tart sour refreshing, light, yummy, not to complex, a bit watery. the almost chemical tart sourness does add up a bit to much sip after sip. it has a very small backdrop of almost porterish malts.. you get more of the malt mouth if you hold it in your mouth for a bit, this is silly though. i want to like it but only kinda do. lil more balance toward normal and i would love it.

mf. spritzy, but good, it fits.

drinkable?: eh, you can drink it and finish.. its not a dumper.

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Photo of ryrust5301
3.24/5  rDev -21.9%
look: 4 | smell: 2.5 | taste: 3.5 | feel: 4 | overall: 3

Into a snifter from a 750oz. black bottle. Cool looking logo.

Appearance - A dark amber color with a pisturesque one finger white head.

Smell - Lots of candied fruit and a sour pungent smell

Taste & Mouthfeel - Very tart and sour. Cherry accounts for the sweetness, but is offset by a strong lemon tang at the end. Sour taste lingers through the swallow. Mouthfeel is extremely sharp and carbonated.

Drinkability - Not my style at all. As far as the style goes it holds its own. Should defenitely not be a stopping point for the average drinker. Know the style before drinking.

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Photo of scruffwhor
3.24/5  rDev -21.9%
look: 2.5 | smell: 3.5 | taste: 3 | feel: 3.5 | overall: 3.5

Good, deep amber garde color. But I expect a head much better than what I saw from this beer. Good bubbling, just terrible head retention. Good spicey toasty malts though. Made me think of herbal biscuits baking in the oven. The taste was a little flat considering all the visible carbonation.

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Photo of Crosling
3.41/5  rDev -17.8%
look: 4.5 | smell: 3.5 | taste: 3.5 | feel: 3 | overall: 3

2007. Autumn colored, with a lasting foam that forms great shapes. Nose has some funk, a bit of oak, some fruit, could be more vibrant. Flavor is nicely balanced. Brett, oak, funk, some fruit, with a bit of an unpleasant cooked corn note as well. Just ok. I'm not the biggest JP fan. All their beers taste the same.

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Photo of DaveFL1976
3.42/5  rDev -17.6%
look: 3.5 | smell: 4 | taste: 3 | feel: 3.5 | overall: 3.5

Not as good as I had hoped. The head was nearly non-existant, although the body itself looked nice. Smell reminded me of some of hy homebrews, actually. And it tasted like some of my first batches, too. I detected a bit of sweet toffee-like malt, but it was overpowered by an astringant finish that hindered drinkability. The alcohol was well-hidden, but I won't be buying another one.

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Photo of ADR
3.45/5  rDev -16.9%
look: 3.5 | smell: 3.5 | taste: 3.5 | feel: 3 | overall: 3.5

More or less translucent brownish chesnut color on the first pour. Small struggling head with not much going on in staying-power. Lace is much better, good rings on the glass. Orange-ade aroma, slightly estery with a bare yeastiness, but not that much. A little uncarbonated and flat (or is that just this bottle?), mouthfeel is lighter. Starts out with the characteristic Jolly Pumpkin sharpness with funky tones. Middle impression spreads out a little bit, slightly chalky bitter with mandarin orange and mellon notes. But the finish is a let-down, seems to fade to a definite wateriness that's not helped by the lack of carbonation -- not much but a bare tartness remains. Mildly warming in the stomach. Meh, not a favorite for me.

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Photo of goochpunch
3.49/5  rDev -15.9%
look: 4 | smell: 5 | taste: 3 | feel: 3.5 | overall: 2.5

Bottled sometime in 07

This was a gusher.

Pours out a hazy to cloudy honeyed amber body with a thick, full head and tons of bubble action in the body. Leaves a lot of lacing. Smells of faint crackery malts and caramel tones underneath loads of funk, fruitiness and spiciness. I get lots of fresh apples, apple cider and apple cider vinegar here. Yeast gives this a spiciness with tones of clove and ceylon cinnamon. I pick up some oranges as well. Flavor is kind of thin in the malt department. Extremely dry. What subtle caramel and toasted malt qualities I got in the nose are even more muted here. Kind of like this has funk for funk's sake and it doesn't mesh as well as with their other beers. Has a weird acrid bitterness in the finish. Has quite a medicinal lingering effect. Mouthfeel is light and spritzy. I usually love JP's offerings, but I'm quite disappointed in this one. Maybe fresher would be better for these, but for a beer touting itself as a stock ale, I would expect better from a beer having been aged for a year under good conditions.

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Photo of Karibourgeois
3.5/5  rDev -15.7%

Clear copper red pour with a small white head. Light sour, white grape and woody aroma. Very light body with a sour cherry and mild red apple taste upfront. Also has flavors of orange, white grapes, mild caramel malt, and yeast. Finishes with a strong and wet sour flavor.

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Photo of Oxymoron
3.52/5  rDev -15.2%
look: 3.5 | smell: 4 | taste: 3.5 | feel: 3.5 | overall: 3

The pour was a copper color with orange highlights that are more noticeable when held to the light. Decent carbonation aided by a swirl with the body. Also causing a hazy appreance.

The nose had a limited malt aroma that contrast with soft caramel aromas with some definite oat characteristics. Some fruity notes with an apple candy appeal and a touch of apricots. Some off rose-like esters mixes with some fusel alcoholic notes.

The flavor is an odd mix especially considering style. The malt is less subtle as what the nose would indicate. The fruity flavors are more tart with more of a white grape feeling. This is mixed with noted oak-like vanilla and green earthy hops. Some yeasty notes that is distinctive with Jolly Pumpkin.

The body is light as should be with most Belgian. Carbonation mixes well and enhances the tart quality. Overall this just feels off style but what is on style for Belgian beers?

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Photo of redneckchugger
3.54/5  rDev -14.7%
look: 3.5 | smell: 4.5 | taste: 2.5 | feel: 3.5 | overall: 4.5

Poured into a duvel tulip, dark brown body, tan fizzy head.
big funky nose, with some nice caramely malt in the back.
The taste starts out great, with a big upfront attack of the funk, like old socks dipped in lemon juice, and rolled in old hay, which sounds gross but i like it. The mad palate is more malty with some caramel notes coming through, and even a bit of dark fruit showing up, the finish though is pretty rough, there is a linger off tastes that defies my powers of description, but its pretty bad.
This beer confuses me, the nose is off the charts good, but the after taste is awful.
Its a decent beer, not great, but it would be mind blowingly good if not for that damn after taste.

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Photo of CortexBomb
3.55/5  rDev -14.5%
look: 4 | smell: 4 | taste: 3.5 | feel: 3.5 | overall: 3

Pours out dark amber witha bone white head. The head is small but sticks around. Smell is lightly fruity, mainly white fruits...pears, green grapes with plenty of malt thrown in for good measure.

The taste starts out with a sweet grape hit which gives way to an almost wine-like off-tang. This segues into a strange hoppish bitter and the malts start showing themselves as well. There is a certain lingering tart, woody aspect amidst all of this, as well as some yeast. The finish is a slight bitter which seems to linger. Pretty good...I would have liked some more intensity in the flavour to really mark this up, but it is decent stuff.

The mouth...medium bodies, medium hops bittering...not bad but nothing really special. Drinkability is only average as the beer seems to lose a lot as it warms, which makes it a suffer.

Overall, a good beer at a cheap price from a local place. Jolly Pumpkin has a certain reputation around this area and this is the first thing that I've tried from them. While it doesn't wow me, it is certainly solid enough and I am definitely willing to give some of their other brews a go.

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Photo of drtth
3.58/5  rDev -13.7%
look: 4 | smell: 3.5 | taste: 3.5 | feel: 4 | overall: 3.5

Poured into a standard shaker glass. Glass of cold water on the side to sip from periodically.

Appearance: The beer as poured is a lightly hazed dark amber, almost brown color, with a ¾" thick light tan head that leaves lots of lacing and persists for much of the beer.

Smell: The aroma is lightly musty and sour with some dried fruit. There are also traces of caramel malt in here.

Taste: The flavors are slightly sour mixed in with the slightly sweet caramel malt. Also floating around in here are some tart cherry, some apple and some oak.

Mouthfeel: The mouth feel is medium to full bodied with lots of carbonation that gives it a nice prickly feel. The finish is moderately long, rich and complex as the various flavors slide in and out leaving a bit of sour or tart plum at the end

Drinkability: At first I thought this beer was only ok, but then I realized that this is a beer takes some getting used to. I have the suspicion that it's the type of beer that will grow on me over time. I certainly intend to revisit this beer to see if I like it better or less the next time around.

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Photo of ptykozoon
3.62/5  rDev -12.8%
look: 3.5 | smell: 4 | taste: 3.5 | feel: 3.5 | overall: 3.5

Dirty brown, ring of lacing. Hints of orange.

Funk, sour cherry, oak. Basically a sour with some belgian influences.

Orange, wheat, lots of spices, light sour pang.

Light mouthfeel, ABV seems low. Sessionability is okay.

Good, lots of mixed floral and earthy flavors.

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Photo of Beaver13
3.63/5  rDev -12.5%
look: 4.5 | smell: 4 | taste: 3.5 | feel: 3 | overall: 3.5

750 ml bottle. Pours a hazy copper-orange with a fizzy white head that quickly diminishes to a thin film that leaves some fine lacing.

The aroma is oak, pepper, some hops and bready malts with some sour sweet-tarts.

The flavor is some bready malts and grassy hops with a little tart sourness. The finish is a weird muted bitterness that tastes kind of off. The mouthfeel is medium bodied and slightly watery with some sharp fizzy carbonation.

Overall, a decent beer. So far it's my least favorite JP beer. I would've like to see a little more sourness, and less of the off bitter finish. As it warmed, it did smooth out some.

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Photo of russpowell
3.64/5  rDev -12.3%
look: 5 | smell: 3.5 | taste: 4 | feel: 4 | overall: 2.5

Pours an effervescent peach/amber with 4 fingers of sand-colored head. Super lacing & head retention with some floaty chunks at the end, a beautiful beer

S: Sourness & mushroom that fades away as this warms, but comes back, weird

T: Sour with hints vinegar & apple skins. Dry as all hell in the middle with the distinct taste of oak or Popsicle stick & pears. Loads more apple skins follow with big-time tartness, plus a little vanilla & some toffee. Finishes with more apple, a little caramel, a little cinamon, tartness, dryness & warming hints of booze

MF: Spritzy with medium body

Drank really slow due the dryness & astringency. This strayed off style too much for me to other than reluctantly recommend to anyone other than bret or Belgian freaks. This brewery is just too funky for me, I think they've taken the whole artisanal/funky theme off the road & towards the cliff. I'd have to be an odd mood to drink this again I think, but you never know? Serve damn near room temp, I'd probably like this on a raw spring day (cold & windy) sitting by a bonfire

P.s. love the label

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Photo of ritzkiss
3.65/5  rDev -12%
look: 4 | smell: 4 | taste: 3.5 | feel: 3.5 | overall: 3.5

650ml bomber thanks to bobsy, we were thinking Bier de Garde but this one is anything but traditional.

Pours a dark ruddy brown with hints of amber and purple. Nose reveals the sharp sourness, which has a bit of funk and vingar like quality, that matches wits with a caramel and toffee base, loads of dark fruits, hint of cocoa, light roast. A little acidic and sharp for my liking, lacking the integration of many of JPs other offerings. A little too sharp carbonation which presents the beer as thinner than it is, just wasn't that drinkable for me.

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Photo of BMMillsy
3.69/5  rDev -11.1%

Big bottle from Tipples. Batch 281/283, bottle 2/20/14. Poured 10/20/14. Pours beautifully clear amber color with a super creamy two finger off white head. Aroma is mostly bready malts with some light grass and a bit of toffee sweetness, and just a hint of barnyard funk. Flavor is on the sweeter side, lots of fruits--apples, cherry, pears--some very sweet caramel malts, a hint of spices, and some funky yeast character. Lightly sour with some lightly dry oak character. Medium plus bodied, and could use a bit more carbonation to lighten things up. Overall, a nice beer for the fall, but wondering if I should have popped it when it was fresher, as it comes in a bit on the sweet side without much hay/hop/funky yeast notes that I was hoping for here.

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Photo of Frozensoul327
3.7/5  rDev -10.8%
look: 4 | smell: 4 | taste: 3.5 | feel: 4 | overall: 3.5

A well made brew from Jolly Pumpkin. Poured out to a hazy burnt orange color with a nice white and orange hued head. Medium high carbonation. Islands of lace are abundant in the glass. Aromas of yeast, rotted fruit, mild roasted malts and grass. Taste was a bit of a let down compared to the smell; flavors of malt, wood, yeast, and sweetness went well together, but overall, this brew seemed like it was missing a piece of the puzzle. Mouthfeel was good and hearty without being over bearingly thick or heavy. A decent level of drinkability overall. This is a good beer de garde, but i've had better. Worth a try.

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Photo of ktel
3.7/5  rDev -10.8%
look: 4 | smell: 4 | taste: 3.5 | feel: 4 | overall: 3.5

Poured from 750 ml bottle. Low carbonation with very little head/lacing. Nice clarity for an unfiltered beer. Sour, tart aroma, with some apple, cherry, and earthy/barnyard aromas. Flavor is overwhelmingly tart up front. Mouthfeel is firm and structured, in spite of too little carbonation. Malt flavors struggle to make it out from under tart/sour flavors. Some nutmeg spiciness and honey, but just too tart for my preferences. Lingering bitterness. I love JP beers, but I don't think this is one of their best.

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Photo of spoony
3.7/5  rDev -10.8%
look: 3.5 | smell: 3.5 | taste: 3.75 | feel: 4 | overall: 3.75

From a 750 ml bottle to a wine glass.

A-A normal pour produces just less than a finger of white head. The retention is short and the beer leaves no lacing on the glass. The brew is dark honey in color and sort-of murky, dirty-water in appearance.

S-The aroma is musty and subtle with suggestions of wine vinegar, white grape, and green apple tartness. The malt aromas are caramel with a slight spice and dough flavor that reminds me of fruit cake. I'm not sure I'm into it.

T-The taste, like the smell, is a bit jumbled. I taste malt flavors like toffee, prune, and a musty wet wheat flavor. I also taste pear and apple fruit, and the aforementioned white grape. The fruitcake spice is still there too, lurking in the background with some white vinegar tartness. It is complex, but not in a good way.

M-The feel is medium in body with a smooth carbonation that stays active on my palate.

O-I had a hard time getting into this beer. There is just so much going on that I am not sure it all fits together. Between the tartness (that is typical of Jolly Pumpkin), the strange malt flavors, and the lighter flavors of apple and pear, it feels and tastes a bit odd to me. Oh well, I can see the appeal, but this beer is not for me.

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Photo of IBUnit63
3.71/5  rDev -10.6%
look: 4.5 | smell: 3.5 | taste: 3.5 | feel: 4 | overall: 4

Batch 346/348 (750 ml) into a Duvel tulip.

Wow - I didn't expect this to be so dark - it's a real bourbon-colored body - best way to describe it...almost Dubbel-esque but with more clarity. Head is a dried ginger color that's extremely doughy and with a fair amount of muffin tunnels, decent coagulation and lacing. Head retention, too. Sparse carbonation moves with moderate strength throughout the glass.

Good solid yeast electricity with a slight amount of sour funkiness as well as extreme dry qualities aided by carbonation and a piney mild hoppiness. At the same time, a sweetness of the darker malts provides a little bit of a dark fruity vinegary pucker to it.

I do like the dryness of this a great deal. It's sort of a mix between, say, Duchess de Borgogne and Brute. Not on the level of each of those, mind you, but a more mild version of a split of the two right down the middle. The darker malt provides necessary sweetness and backbone against the tight sourness and carbonation, while there's sufficient spriteliness to mellow out the vinegar. Peanut butter and chocolate right there.

Palate feel gives that nice, jarring electrical jolt of a slightly wild fermentation. Dries up a great deal on the finish, but the finish stays nice and long. By no means heavy to the palate or to the touch. Reasonably well-balanced.

While this may not be something I seek out every day, it's greatly appreciated. This is a clear case of the whole being greater than the sum of its parts. Quite well done.

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Photo of RblWthACoz
3.75/5  rDev -9.6%
look: 3.5 | smell: 3.5 | taste: 4 | feel: 4 | overall: 3.5

Blend 1 3-1-11

They should have called this one a Bam too. Because the whole thing is just, bam, oak all up in your mouth. Which is okay, but there is no grace or style to it. It's somewhat one dimensional and I'd have to say too strong. Decent, but lacks finesse.

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Photo of BedetheVenerable
3.75/5  rDev -9.6%
look: 3.5 | smell: 3.5 | taste: 4 | feel: 4 | overall: 3.5

Presentation: 750ml brown pop top, high-shouldered Belgian-style bottle with beautiful label. Batch 970/973, bottled 3-8-12.

Appearance: Slightly hazy apple cider with nice dark ivory cap with decent retention.

Smell: Little bit of citrus and a ton of tart apple cider. Pleasant, but I'd like a bit of earthy, toasty malt character as well.

Taste: I like the flavor better. You get a nice kick of acidity up front, a bit puckering, but it doesn't linger on the palate for long, which is really nice. As soon as the sourness fades, you have a nice dark caramel, toasty malt presence. Actually fairly mellow compared to a lot of JP's sour, and I like that. A light mineral note on the finish, as well as a hint of dry malt. This to me seems like a quintessential autumn beer.

Mouthfeel: On the light side of medium bodied.

Overall: It's $12.00. It's really tasty. Do I love it? Not quite. But I would definitely pick one of these up every year if it was available. Solid B

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Bière De Mars from Jolly Pumpkin Artisan Ales
4.15 out of 5 based on 687 ratings.
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