Bière De Mars | Jolly Pumpkin Artisan Ales

223 Reviews
no score
Send samples
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

For Trade:
View: Beers | Events
User Reviews
Sort by:  Recent | High | Low | Top Raters
Reviews: 223 | Ratings: 684
Photo of scottfrie
4.37/5  rDev +5.3%
look: 4 | smell: 4.5 | taste: 4.25 | feel: 4.5 | overall: 4.5

750ml bottle into tulip, bottled 3/8/2012.

A: Pours a deep amber color with a finger of fuzzy film that lasted a few minutes before falling into a faint collar.
S: Smells awesome. Tons of dry oak barrel, woody tannins, musty straw, damp earth, spicy hops, a hint of citrus, and bready yeast.
T: Tart notes of oak mixed with crackery malt, acidic citrus, and earthy spice. Gritty tannins cling to my throat in the finish and the aftertaste is faintly sweet with caramel and black tea.
M: Very dry, spritzy carbonation, gritty tannic mouthfeel, clean and crisp.
O: Another awesome sour from JP. Clean, dry, and balanced. Well done.

 630 characters

Photo of TheBrewo
4.32/5  rDev +4.1%
look: 4.25 | smell: 4.75 | taste: 4.25 | feel: 3.75 | overall: 4.25

Decided to tackle this guy fresh, as we crack a bottle stickered as “Blend 2, Bottled 2-28-2013”. It pours a ruddy chestnut coloring, putting up a one and a half finger head of active, off white bubbles, showing nice retention. This leaves spotted lacing all around the glass. A chill haze cuts the clarity, and no sediment is noted. Carbonation appears to be moderate. The aroma gives wild bite from the start. This comes as grassy, barnyard funkiness that doesn’t quite approach the sweetness of Brett, but fortified with sourdough bread, lactobacillus, white vinegar, pretzel mustard, tobacco leafiness, rummy booziness, wet lemon rind, and penicillin medicinals. To balance are lighter, more creamy pale malts, lightly contributory caramel malts, acetaldehyde, nutmeg spiciness, mango sugars, and cabernet dryness. Powdered florals come out with warmth. Our first impression is that the flavoring shows good funk, as the nose would suggest, but with much more general mildness to it. The taste opens with all of that glorious yeasty funk, with basement musk, pale and muddy maltiness to base, light floral hops, citric rind bitterness, soft yeasty metallics, dried grassiness, and grilled asparagus. The middle comes to a peak with pale and crystal maltiness to cleanse, floury malt inclusions, white wine fruitiness, and a returning bite of winey oakiness, under ripe strawberries, and green plums. Washing through the finish are watered clovey phenols, mild soapiness, green vegetals, sticky yeasty funk, vinyl plastics, mineral water, soft white flour, slick metallics, and more of that bright lemony zest. The aftertaste breathes of raw lemon bite, musk, chardonnay grape skins, moldy woodiness, light fusel booziness, parmesan cheesiness, raw flour pasta, and that continued and drying soured yeastiness. The body is medium, and the carbonation is medium. The mouth is left wet and crisply coated at first, with eventual lemony pucker and soft woody dryness down the hard palate. Otherwise the slurp, sip, and smack are all there, but froth and creaminess are a bit lost. The abv is appropriate, and the beer drinks easily.

Overall, what we enjoyed most about this beer was its aroma. Things were just so funky, creamy, musky, bright, soured, and grassy, all while sitting in the nice malty base of a country ale. The flavoring followed nicely, as did the sip, but the big boldness of the nose was lacking. All the components were there, but they were just not as robust as we were hoping through the flavoring, or as creamy as we would have liked on the sip. Regardless, as a whole this is a fantastic take on the style, and a great showcasing of the tricks, punch, and excitement that Jolly Pumpkin has up their sleeves.

 2,738 characters

Photo of superspak
4.42/5  rDev +6.5%
look: 4 | smell: 4.5 | taste: 4.5 | feel: 4 | overall: 4.5

750 ml bottle into tulip glass; Blend 1, bottled 3/1/2011. Pours lightly hazy reddish copper color with a 1-2 finger foamy off white head with good retention, that reduces to a thin cap that lingers. Light spotty lacing clings on the glass. Aromas of big tart cherry, sour apple, raisin, caramel, clove, pepper, toast, oak, hay, leather, red wine, grass, funk, vinegar, and earthy yeast spiciness. Incredible aromas with great complexity and balance of fruity/spicy yeast notes with moderate malt balance and barrel character. Taste of tart cherry, sour apple, raisin, caramel, pepper, clove, toast, oak, hay, leather, red wine, grass, vinegar, funk, and earthy yeast spiciness. Moderate fruity tartness on the finish; with lingering notes of tart fruits, caramel, clove, pepper, toast, hay, grass, oak, leather, red wine, vinegar, and yeast earthiness on the finish for a good bit. Fantastic complexity and balance of fruity/spicy esters with moderate barrel character and malt balance; with a great tartness/sweetness balance and no cloying flavors after the finish. Medium carbonation and body; with a creamy, slick, and moderately acidic mouthfeel that is nice. Alcohol is very well hidden with hardly any warming noticed after the finish. Overall this is an incredible wild Biere de Garde style! All around great complexity and balance of flavors; and very smooth to sip on with moderate acidity. An extremely enjoyable offering.

 1,434 characters

Photo of aasher
4/5  rDev -3.6%
look: 4 | smell: 4 | taste: 4 | feel: 4 | overall: 4

I had to pick up one of these in Ohio since for sme reason this is the only regular Jolly Pumpkin that Indiana doesn't get.

Biere de Mars pours a lighter bodied dark amber in color with a one finger, very soapy off white head. The nose is sharp and vinous. I get a good amount of lactic acidity and a red grape, tannic side as well. The flavors too, very sharp and crisp. I get a lot of sour red grape character in both a lactic and acetic manner. It also has a slight, juicy, fruity sweetness to it as well. This is definitely one of the more sour Jolly Pumpkins and definitely one of the most acidic. Because of this it isn't quite as approachable as some of their other, highly rated beers but it is a nice beer and a decent sour. Really, I would call this a darker version of Petrus if I had to relate it to anything.

 822 characters

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.

 265 characters

Photo of dcloeren
4.15/5  rDev 0%
look: 4 | smell: 4 | taste: 4 | feel: 4.5 | overall: 4.5

Thanks to my bro for sharing this bottle...

Poured a hazy sunset orange with bright white fizzy head.

The aroma produced was quite nice. Lactic tartness, lemon peel, granny smith apple all encapsulated with se barnyard funk.

The taste is jaw clinchingly tart as the beer warms up. Musty, funky, fresh lemon zest and juicy granny smith apple. The oak becomes more apparent as it gets closer to room temp. Fantastic all around.

Medium bodied with an appropriate amount of carbonation. It really catches me in the bak corners of my mouth when I let it cost my tongue. Very drying finish.

Overall this was a very good beer. I thoroughly enjoyed the funkiness and the sharp finish that this beer brought. Jolly Pumpkin keeps on impressing me.

 742 characters

Photo of chugalug06
4.66/5  rDev +12.3%
look: 3 | smell: 4.5 | taste: 5 | feel: 5 | overall: 4.5

Batch 970/973
Bottled 03-08-2012

Very nice, one-finger, white, fluffy head that lasts for some time. No lacing and heavy murkeyness.

Tons of lemon, ginger, spices, barnyard funk, and sour apple. Heaven.

Very smooth tartness. Very well laid out with TONS of flavors going on... Lemon, green apple, earthy, pepper corns stand out. Perfect rush of carbonation, mild dryness and perfectly (light) sweet.

IMO, this is near as good as it gets. Awesome sour from JP, keep em' comin, only now to Colorado. This brew sets the benchmark for all other sours.

 554 characters

Photo of atomeyes
5/5  rDev +20.5%
look: 5 | smell: 5 | taste: 5 | feel: 5 | overall: 5

No need to go into details. This beer is absolutely incredible. I wish i could drink a bottle every day. it would be my elixir.

Amazing tartness, relatively complex. One of the better sours I've had.

the only thing that sucked? i had it in the fridge for 30 min. not long enough. i forgot that JP beers are gushers. hot damn.

 327 characters

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

 978 characters

Photo of warnerry
4.35/5  rDev +4.8%
look: 4 | smell: 4 | taste: 4.5 | feel: 4.5 | overall: 4.5

Blend 2; bottled 2/24/10; notes from 4/25/11

A - A bit of a foamer on opening. Pours copper with two fingers of head that dissipate quickly and fade to a collar.

S - Nice lemony tartness, along with a subtle earthy funk. I am a bit surprised by the subtlety of the aroma, but what is there is very nice.

T - Wonderful lemon tart pucker on the first taste. Earthy on the finish. Leaves a lingering bitterness composed of both earthiness and lemon zest. Actually quite refreshing. This might be my favorite from Jolly Pumpkin.

M - Light/medium mouthfeel is nice and crisp with pleasant carbonation.

O - Definitely a winner from JP. I would love to try the Grand Reserve.

 673 characters

Photo of KickInTheChalice
4.42/5  rDev +6.5%
look: 4 | smell: 4.5 | taste: 4.5 | feel: 4 | overall: 4.5

Poured from a 750 mL bottle into a tulip.

Appearance: Biere de Mars pours a hazy apple cider bronze color with a medium tan head that eventually fades to a ring around the edge of the glass. No real lacing to speak of.

Smell: The aroma is mostly sour, with a soft leather and musty funk. Caramel malt and dried dark fruits, mostly cherries, control the aroma with an oak back.

Taste: A soft caramel sweetness starts out before the lactic sourness takes over. Cherry plum notes remind me of an Oude Bruin. Some oak, vanilla, and spice come in toward the middle of the sip, with some lemon zest and general tartness to finish it off.

Mouthfeel: The body of Biere de Mars is a little bit fuller than I expect from a sour. The oak dries out and lightens the back end, but the body is still on the full side. The feel is sour, mostly lactic, that causes some salivation. The carbonation is on the light side and fades over the course of the glass.

Overall: Jolly Pumpkin makes quite a few solid sours, and this falls in the upper tier of their beers. Only the Biere de Mars Grand Reserve can really compete in my mind.

 1,120 characters

Photo of Mora2000
4.42/5  rDev +6.5%
look: 4 | smell: 4.5 | taste: 4.5 | feel: 4 | overall: 4.5

Thanks to djrn2 for sending me this beer off my wants list. Batch 256.

The beer pours a dark brown color with an off-white head. The aroma is very nice. I get a lot of dark fruit, with some plums and cherries standing out the most. I also get some caramel malt.

The flavor is full of tart apples and tart cherries, as well as some yeast and a little bit of funk. The toffee malt adds a touch of sweetness to the flavor profile, which goes well with the tart fruit notes. Overall, a little more sour than I expected it to be. Very enjoyable overall.

Medium mouthfeel and medium carbonation.

 593 characters

Photo of schmoopsbeer
4.35/5  rDev +4.8%
look: 4 | smell: 4 | taste: 4.5 | feel: 4.5 | overall: 4.5

Big thanks to thorpe429 for this long time want and romolux for supplying more of this in a recent trade.

bottle poured into bruery tulip
Blend 1 2011

Color: Brownish red hues for this beer.... glows differently from every angle. A hazy beer, not plenty of light getting through this one. A nickle sized head forms after the pour of the off white shade. Some minor soapy lacing is left on the glass as you drink the beer down.

Nose: Big funky smells come from this beer. Vinegar comes up at the forefront followed by some wicked barnyard scents. Dried pit fruit floats around in the glass and the smell of apples and cranberries swim in the background.

Palate: Interesting! mellow sourness/tart. Funky and fruity with a medium body feel. The drinkability is awesome.... the carbonation is spot on and the abv is well masked. As the beer warms it gets a tad more complex,but a bit harder to drink, but not really a bad thing.

Finish: Dry and tart with a lingering texture of sour fruit and mild vinegar. I really enjoyed this brew. I wish it was available a lot more especially in California. JP another solid brew!

Rating: 94 out of 100

 1,142 characters

Photo of MeisterBurger
3.8/5  rDev -8.4%
look: 3.5 | smell: 3.5 | taste: 4 | feel: 3.5 | overall: 4

Blend 2 - bottled 3-8-2011.

Pours like a Diet Coke, a deep hazy ruby chestnut, almost purple at times, topped by a thin head of foam that dies down to a thin collar circling small islands of foam.

The aroma is pure sour funk with notes of caramel and apple cider vinegar.

The taste is sour caramel cherries. Dry oaky finish with rubber gym balls lingering in the aftertaste. Tart without being sour, but it's enough to keep the caramel and light cocoa notes in check. Somewhat vinous/vinegary.

Light body with light carbonation.

Pretty decent overall.

 556 characters

Photo of drabmuh
4.22/5  rDev +1.7%
look: 4 | smell: 4.5 | taste: 4 | feel: 4 | overall: 4.5

At the time of this review this is the #6 top Biere de Garde on best of lists. Bottle shares by Thorpe in a mini side by side with the "grand reserve" version. Beer serves in a Russian river wine glass.

Beer is brown and mildly hazy with a thin off white head of small bubbles no lacing low carbonation.

Aroma is lactic, strong Brett character.

Beer is medium in body and sour on the palate. The lactic acid wins out here for sure. There is a mild acetic bite the whole thing as well. The finish is a little dry. Overall a good beer. Very drinkable. Very nice. I'd have it again.

 602 characters

Photo of Thorpe429
4.17/5  rDev +0.5%
look: 4 | smell: 4.5 | taste: 4 | feel: 4.5 | overall: 4

Bottle courtesy of jale. Served in a Bruery tulip.

Pours a muddy brown color with a bit of a copper-crimson hue to it. Thin off-white head and some light lacing on the way down. Thin collar. Nose carries a good dose of lactic acid with a touch of acetic character in the background. Mild funk and a solid base of bread-crust malt. Flavor is acidic and a nice tartness and a very light cherry character. Light malt. Light to medium body with moderate carbonation and a good sour kick in the finish. Well done.

 509 characters

Photo of Huhzubendah
4.42/5  rDev +6.5%
look: 4 | smell: 4.5 | taste: 4.5 | feel: 4 | overall: 4.5

Bottle shared by Thorpe429. Served side by side with Bière de Mars Grand Reserve.

The beer is orange to brown in color, with an off white head. Random, spotty lacing on the tulip. Awesome aroma, with a strong Brettanomyces presence. Funky, wild, and wonderful. The flavor is outstanding. Easy to drink and quite enjoyable. Medium to thin in body, with adequate carbonation. I am thoroughly enjoying this. Perhaps not as bold or daring as the Grand Reserve, but highly quaffable. I definitely recommend it and would have it again.

 531 characters

Photo of JLeege
4.18/5  rDev +0.7%
look: 4 | smell: 3.5 | taste: 4.5 | feel: 4 | overall: 4.5

Bottled March 8th, 2011 – Poured into a tulip

Appearance- Pours a rich mahogany color with a finger and a half of off white head. Fades to a small collar. (The inital pour is beautiful, the second "yeast" pour looks like swamp water)

Smell- Caramel and a bit doughy, dark fruits; a touch of citrus and oak, all with the signature JP funk, which I adore. Smells very nice, though overall not as aromatic as most of their beers (usually the aroma fills up the whole room upon opening).

Taste-Slight tart cherry, plum and red grape at the onset; fairly vinous. Caramel notes pick up and a hint of toasted malts. Nice oak, slight vanilla, and leather towards the finish. A nice brett-y dryness at the end, still a young bottle, but I expect this to dry out even more over a few years. The ultimate linger is dry toasted oak with some grape/raison.

Mouthfeel- Medium body and medium/low carbonation, could use a touch more carbonation if I want to get really picky. Ever so slightly tart and quite dry.

Overall- Great beer. I will probably try to snag another bottle or 2, or 5, because I feel this beer will age gracefully and become even more dynamic. Jolly Pumpkin is quickly becoming one of my top 3 breweries.

 1,217 characters

Photo of twiggamortis420
4.47/5  rDev +7.7%
look: 4 | smell: 4.5 | taste: 4.5 | feel: 4.5 | overall: 4.5

750 mL bottle that has been chillin in the cellar at least a year or two. Pours a decently clear dark copper color. Nice lace and tight head. Oh, and one of the coolest labels I have ever seen.

Nose is brett, leather, dark fruit and toasted malt. Big, bold and funky smelling brew...JP fans will not be disappointed here.

Tart, dry and bold toasty malts make for a unique flavor experience. Funkalicious oak and bold toffee. As it warms some nice fruit undertones come out, not quite as bold as raisins, more currant-like. Quite impressive, much more than merely enjoyable. JP employs a deft hand at farmhouse funk with the majority of their beers. With so many turning out delicious, I am ruling out luck as a factor why this is so damn tasty. Next to La Roja, this might be my one of my favorite offerings. Superb!

 818 characters

Photo of itk1
4.35/5  rDev +4.8%
look: 4 | smell: 4 | taste: 4.5 | feel: 4.5 | overall: 4.5

Batch 346/348. One of the best regular Jolly Pumpkin offerings in my opinion.The beer pours a light brown color with a substantial white head. The smell is slightly sour with a little bit of funk thrown in to the mix. The taste is similar with a slightly sour start to the sip finished off by a little funkiness that isn't to over the top. You can also pick out a little oak in the finish. Rather light on the pallet which is nice during the summer in Florida. Overall a winner that I would return to regularly if were a little less expensive.

 543 characters

Photo of DovaliHops
4.58/5  rDev +10.4%
look: 5 | smell: 4.5 | taste: 4.5 | feel: 5 | overall: 4.5

Batch 346/348. Poured into Lost Abbey stemware. Pours a dark brown color that is a beautiful reddish-purple when held up to light. It had a large off-white head that hangs around for a very long time. Beautiful head on this beer. Scent was extremely funky from the second I popped the cap. Gotta love that JP signature funk. I also get a lot of oak and wood aromas with some sweet fruits and hints of vanilla. Taste is....DAMN I LOVE JP MORE and MORE with each of their beers I try. Initially I get tart cherry flavors, immediately followed by Belgian yeast, barnyard funk, and TONS of oak. The sweet fruity flavors in the beginning are amazing and somewhat vinous. Then all the oak and vanilla comes in and just blows my palate away. Mouthfeel is very full-bodied and creamy. Drinkability is very high with no detectible alcohol flavors. Overall, this is ANOTHER amazing beer from Jolly Pumpkin...These guys are becoming one of my favorite breweries by far.

 958 characters

Photo of davidbowers13
3.94/5  rDev -5.1%
look: 3 | smell: 4 | taste: 4 | feel: 4 | overall: 4

Reviw of blend 2, bottled on 3/8/11.

A - Hazy light brown color with hardly any head and mild carbonation. Poured straight into the bottom of the glass to induce head, but could not attain anything more than a finger/half a finger tall.

S - Mostly oak and cherries. I thought it had a smell similar to a chardonnay wine.

T - Followed the nose. Oak with a sour cherry character. A little lacking in carbonation, I feel this may have improved the overall beer a little.

M - Light, with a light sour finish. I'm not a big fan of sours and this beer did not over power me. Again, I feel that a little more carbonation could have helped too.

O - Overall a pretty good beer. I recommend trying it if you get the chance. Not sure I'd buy it again however.

 755 characters

Photo of SFLpunk
4.06/5  rDev -2.2%
look: 3 | smell: 4.5 | taste: 4 | feel: 4 | overall: 4

750ml brown glass prytop. Batch number 346/348. Bought at Knightly Spirits OBT, Orlando, FL.

Pours a murky brown with some red highlights and thin light tan head. Not a very pretty beer. Aroma is all about sour black cherry, black raisins and dates with lime zest on them. Great nose.

Palate is sour and crisp right off the bat. Goes a little wanky, a little watery after a second. Flavors are sour cherry, black cherry, figs, dates, oats, and lemon rind and pits.

Great aroma, good flavor, weak palate, weak appearance. Good but not great overall.

 551 characters

Photo of corby112
4.38/5  rDev +5.5%
look: 4.5 | smell: 4 | taste: 4.5 | feel: 4.5 | overall: 4.5

From notes:

Pours a very dark ruby/chestnut brown color that appears completely opaque in the glass with sligh mahogany edges and a two finger frothy beige head. Very good retention, slowly fading into a lasting cap that leaves chunks of soapy lacing behind.

Funky earthy aroma with a prominent barrel character as well as some bret, citrus fruit and zesty spice. Lots of earthy oak/wood as well as some coriander and citrus rind.

Full chewy body with a slightly creamy texture as well as some soft carbonation up front and a good bit of dry funk. Slightly tart wihout being acidic. Nice dry Bret presence along with a wrong barrel charater and malt backbone. Hints of earhy oak, dry Bret and other bugs,vanilla and citrus peel. Dry finish. Complex, refreshing and very easy to drink. One of my favorite beers feom JP.

 822 characters

Photo of
4.39/5  rDev +5.8%
look: 4 | smell: 5 | taste: 4 | feel: 4.5 | overall: 4.5

Appearance - hazy tawney-orange with a thin tan head that dissipates fairly quickly.

Smell - Very vinous. Sour, earthy, and funky. Notes of dark tart cherries, oak, and honey.

Taste - Echoes the aroma. Softly sour with a nice oak presence and a clean, lingering finish.

 272 characters

Bière De Mars from Jolly Pumpkin Artisan Ales
4.15 out of 5 based on 684 ratings.
  • About Us

    Your go-to website for beer (since 1996), publishers of BeerAdvocate magazine (since 2006) and hosts of world-class beer events (since 2003). Respect Beer.
  • BeerAdvocate Microbrew Invitational

    Join us June 2-3, 2017 in Boston, Mass. for beer, cider, mead, kombucha and sake from over 70 small producers.

    Learn More
  • Subscribe to BeerAdvocate Magazine

    No fake news here. Get real beer content delivered to your doorstep every month.