Bam Bière | Jolly Pumpkin Artisan Ales

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Bam BièreBam Bière

Brewed by:
Jolly Pumpkin Artisan Ales
Michigan, United States

Style: Saison / Farmhouse Ale

Alcohol by volume (ABV): 4.50%

Availability: Rotating

Notes / Commercial Description:
No notes at this time.

Added by nomad on 02-04-2006

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Reviews: 646 | Ratings: 1,389
Photo of beerkittycat
1.89/5  rDev -52%
look: 3.5 | smell: 2 | taste: 2 | feel: 2 | overall: 1

First off, I love Jolly Pumpkin ales but unfortunately this was not a strong offering. Appearance is cloudy yellow-gold with a massive rocky white head. Aroma is of lemons, saltines, and that distinct tart aroma of lactic bacteria. Tasting this beer was like biting into a lemon wedge but not quite as sour or tart. Mouthfeel is medium light and way too thin for a saison and there's a distinct flavor of lactic bacteria which is also off for the style. I could not smell, taste or detect any hops at all because of the sourness and tartness. Finish is harsh and the effevescent carbonation actually intensifies the off-flavors as I swallow the beer. Clearly a cross-contamination happened here, but it won't stop me from reaching for a Jolly Pumpkin beer. I'll just select a different beer from their line-up.

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Photo of chinchill
1.99/5  rDev -49.5%
look: 3.25 | smell: 1.75 | taste: 1.75 | feel: 2.75 | overall: 2

From a 750 ml bottle (bottled 12-28-10) into a snifter. It looks like unfiltered apple cider, but with a fluffy, off-white head. About 1.5cm of sediment-loaded liquid was left in the bottle.

Smell: Wild yeast with a bit of a brett. Slightly sour and floral.

Taste: mild for style, with lingering Brett and wild yeast, leather, earthy hops and some lemon. Mildly sour and fruity.

M: Light, watery body; semi-dry; tart.

O: rather mild flavor; not a bad thing for the Brett component. Bretty/earthy/funky beers your kind of thing? ... then this one’s for you. For me, it's barely drinkable, at best.

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Photo of rickyleepotts
2/5  rDev -49.2%
look: 2 | smell: 2 | taste: 2 | feel: 2 | overall: 2

This bottle looks so familiar to me… I just can’t place it. The beer isn’t that old. They just started brewing in 2005, and this bottle was actually bottled in March of 2011. There is a sticker on the side of the bottle. This bottle was bottled on 3-16-11 and is a part of batch 752. I wish more beers did that. Adds a nice touch to it.

I was chatting with Jake on Twitter, and while he isn’t here to enjoy this bottle conditioned beer with us, he is here in spirit. Let’s see what this beer is all about.

(Please note I am drinking a Hopslam too… so let’s get through this because I doubt it even comes close to that delicious beer!)

In the Glass: It looks like a wheat beer in the glass. It’s gold and cloudy, and reminds me of a wit beer. The head is nice though, and I can tell that this beer will provide nice lace. For such a young beer, less than a year old, the beer stands up for a solid brew.

Nose: At first, there isn’t much nose. But if you stick your nose down into the glass, it gets good. I smell dirt. That’s a good thing though. This is a farmhouse ale after all. That is the brettanomyces I am smelling. I do, as the beer warms up, get a “pop” that I expect on a wheat beer.

Flavor: There is a TON of carbonation on this beer. Holy cow. That’s like drinking a diet soda with a mouth full of pop rocks. That is a TON of bubbles. It’s almost too much to be honest. The bubbles are overwhelming. I have had champagne that wasn’t this carbonated. It sort of takes away from the flavor on the from of the palate.

Mouthfeel: The mouthfeel is awful. There are so many bubbles I don’t even want to finish the glass. As the beer explodes on the front, middle, and back of the tongue there is some subtle bitterness on the corners of the palate, but the bubbles are all I can think of. When I swallow, the flavors start to kick in… but the bubbles take so much away from the beer.

Aftertaste: The aftertaste will provide the most flavor you get from this beer. The bubbles, and I know I keep going back to them, are just horrible. Now… let me rephrase that. They don’t make the beer horrible. They make the beer experience horrible. I wanted this to be smooth, loaded with flavor. A beer with this low of an ABV isn’t something I will order all the time, but I couldn’t pay more than a few bucks for this if it was on special.

The beer isn’t bad… but the bubbles are ALL I can think about. So if you like a beer that is loaded with carbonation, this is the beer for you. The most I have found in a beer to date. Not sure I could drink this one again. I will finish the glass, but that’s as far as I can go.

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Photo of rcmooney
2.04/5  rDev -48.2%
look: 3 | smell: 4 | taste: 1 | feel: 1.5 | overall: 1.75

smells great , honey, wild yeast, slight sour, citrus, spice

Hazy golden yellow with flakes of yeast, big rocky white head

Taste is very mild, underwhelming, slightly watery

Light body, dry finish, high carbonation

Not a fan. Very low flavor profile.

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Photo of brewmudgeon
2.19/5  rDev -44.4%
look: 3.5 | smell: 2 | taste: 2 | feel: 3 | overall: 2

bam biere farmhouse ale by jolly pumpkin artisan ales llc

pale apricot color. gigantic frothy head, leaves occasional tufts of soapsud lace.

smells of tart fruit, vinegar, lots of lemon, but also a strong medicinal off smell.

taste is tart but not so extreme as say a berliner weisse. there's that medicinal aspect, i suppose from the yeast. having a very hard time enjoying this beer.

body is light but not crisp.

seems a lot like watered down lemon cough syrup, and not very good cough syrup. i gave it a chance and sipped it for half an hour, but for the most part ... yuck.

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Photo of warmstorage
2.21/5  rDev -43.9%
look: 3.5 | smell: 2.5 | taste: 2 | feel: 2 | overall: 2

12 ounce bottle, ~$2.00 from Hi Times in Costa Mesa, poured into beer clean pint glass. Bought this one because I wanted to taste a Jolly Pumpkin brew before risking a 750ml, and this was the only 12 ounce available. Glad I did.

Damn near exploded upon opening; managed to pour (gently) about an inch into the glass before needing to wait a few minutes, since the huge rocky white foam was up to the top. Took several pours to get a decent amount into the glass, and then wait for the head to go down enough so I could drink the liquid. Even now, ~20 minutes in, there is vigorous bubbling of carbonation.

Pours a bright yellow, retains an active rocky rolling head. The 3.5 appearance score is after it settled for 20 minutes; if I'd scored it initially, it's nearly impossible to drink straight after opening.

Aroma is sour and tangy, with hints of phenolic/plastic. Doesn't bode well.

Initial taste is much like the aroma hinted: sour, tart, puckery tangy, and distinctly band-aid phenolic. Pretty unpleasant, frankly. The sour plastic taste and tingly mouthfeel linger, and even eating some plain bread in between doesn't totally get rid of the sourness. Dry indeed, and here the influence of the brett really isn't pleasant, as it is in other beers I've had. Pucker is fine with me, mouth twistingly sour is not. Tangy is fine, funk is not.

Now, I know farmhouse style ales are designed to be tart, but this is over the top tartness compared to any other Saison I've had (which is somewhere around 8 to 10.) This is so excessively tart and sour that I'm not sure I want to finish it, which is a shame, and really something for me. I'm going to go sit on my porch in the late afternoon sun and think about it as a lawnmower beer.

Nope, didn't like this much at all, either for style, or overall. Seems like a lot of other people's comments mirror mine, yet they rate it higher. Guess it's just a matter of taste...

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Photo of Beaver13
2.31/5  rDev -41.4%
look: 3.5 | smell: 2.5 | taste: 2 | feel: 2 | overall: 2.5

12 oz bottle. Pours murky yellow with a smallish white head that quickly recedes to a thin film that leaves a little lacing. There's lots of chunky yeasties.

The aroma is musty yeast, lemongrass a little vegetables and spices.

The flavor is earthy yeast and lingering grassy hops with a little pepper and fruits and some hard to identify off notes (charred plastic?). The mouthfeel is rather thin and watery.

Overall, this just does not do it for me. Definitely my least favorite from an interesting brewery.

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Photo of Shrews629
2.4/5  rDev -39.1%
look: 4 | smell: 1.5 | taste: 2.5 | feel: 3 | overall: 2.5

Appearance - Cloudy. Burnt yellow/gold color with a super bright, white, soapy, fluffy head. Had some very nice retention and lacing. Looks pretty good in the glass.

Smell - The aroma is definitely a puzzler. It has the spice of pepper and maybe some clove, but I'm detecting what I think might be a sour lemon or something. It almost had a funky nursing home, stale urine type of smell. Not very pleasing to me.

Taste - The taste had a bitter, tart lemon flavoring. Leads of bitterness to make me pucker up. Some spice of pepper and clove. This also is very sour. Maybe a bit too much for me at this point.

Mouthfeel - The mouthfeel was primarily medium. Left plenty on the palate. Somewhat watery and could be refreshing under the correct circumstances.

Drinkability - Well, this was my first Saison, so maybe I was caught a little off gaurd by the aroma and taste. Maybe just a touch too sour for me. My palate must not be ready for this style. I'm sure some love it and maybe I will revert back to this and give it a second review when I have had more experience with this style of beer. As for now, this is not a beer I would want on a regular basis.

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Photo of kingjames1
2.48/5  rDev -37.1%
look: 4 | smell: 3.5 | taste: 1.5 | feel: 4 | overall: 2

This beer pours a nice hazy blonde with yeasties o-plenty, per the style. The smell is fruity, funky and sour. Taste - blech! This is a drain pour. It has to be ruined somehow. I know farmhouses are funky, but this is nasty. Something has gone awry - terribly awry. At least, that is my hope. Surely this can't be right. The carbonation is fine, but the taste - a rotting fruit, that is both sickening and overly sour - makes this undrinkable. Super dry, and ending with a nasty metallic taste. Ugh... I will have to try another one. This one blows chunks.

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Photo of beerwolf77
2.51/5  rDev -36.3%
look: 4.5 | smell: 3.5 | taste: 2 | feel: 4 | overall: 1

BeerFMAndy decided to share this beer with me. Thanks(I think).

The beer pours a crystal clear golden yellow with an enormous white head that nearly escapes my glass. The head rests on top like a thick dollop of whipped cream and just sort of camps out. It litterally hung around for several minutes. Decent lace rings are left in its wake (looks can be decieving)

The aroma is a whirlwind of olfactory dichatamies. I picked out a strong woody aroma. Then that changed to black pepper mixed with apples. This then faded to a funky barnyard, wet straw mix. I then picked up a black earth grassy tone in the finish. Very complex.

The flavor is WTF! Super dry an tart. This reminds me of perrie sparkling water. Light black pepper and a hint of yeast. There really isn't even a whole lot of flavor period. Just what is there is as foul as I've ever tasted. We passed this beer along to other people in the house and got the same reaction so it wasn't just me. I believe someone said it tasted like "having perfume sprayed in your mouth." I've had plenty of saisons and this ain't what I remember one tasting like.

The body was medium to light with moderate carbonation. Dry dry dry. The Sahara desert thinks this beer is dry.

Overall the look and the smell were fine. That's the only redeeming qualities of this beer. Never again. Drain pour city! I hate it when someone cracks a beer with you and it turns out horrible. Sorry Andy.

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Photo of Yesac
2.59/5  rDev -34.3%
look: 4 | smell: 2.5 | taste: 2.5 | feel: 3.5 | overall: 2

Got this as an extra in a trade from yem25 - thanks! This is my first of this stle, Farmhouse Ale.

A - cloudy translucent golden yellow color with a thick foamy head. Bubbles form a ring between the head and glass. Nice lacing.

S - Strong fresh zesty sour lemon, hints of yeast

T - Pow! The first sip woke me up. Tart! Goes along great with the smell, a sour yeast with hints of lemon and dry hops. The taste is thin and flat carried off quickly by the carbonation.

M - Thin and refreshing feeling, washes away nicely. Great carbonation.

D - To sweet and sour for me, this was hard to finish.

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Photo of clint1019
2.61/5  rDev -33.8%
look: 4 | smell: 3 | taste: 2 | feel: 3.5 | overall: 2.5

Appearance-Straw Colored and very hazy with a huge frothy white head.

Smell-Very citrusy and tart aroma.

Taste-A very strong tart lemony taste. Could not taste much else.

Mouthfeel-It was very light bodied and very dry tasting with a blast of carbonation on the tongue.

Overall-I'm not real sure what to think of this beer. This is the first beer of this style that I've tried, so maybe I wasn't prepared for how sour tasting it was going to be. Don't think I would buy again.

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Photo of BeerFMAndy
2.73/5  rDev -30.7%
look: 4.5 | smell: 4 | taste: 2 | feel: 3 | overall: 2

22 oz bottle split with Beerwolf77. Poured into my Unibroue tulip. Batch 401 sticker on the back. No other info.

Thanks to Sweemzander for this bottle! Haven't had Jolly Pumpkin before.

A - Totally clear golden yellow with bubbles constantly coming up to a well formed white head. Good retention with moderate lace left on the glass.

S - A light horseblanket funk hides behind a mildly spice pale malt and wheat nose. The most interesting thing about this beer is the hint of salsa. To make it interesting, there is also some weird wet wood too. The nose is all over the place. It changes constantly with the head level.

T - Despite the abundant nose, the flavor is harshly lacking. Very thin and watered down pale malts and a mild spice hint with an insanely dry finish. Where did all the flavor from the nose go?

M - Sparkling like champagne and as thin bodied. Watery with an intensely dry and lightly bitter finish.

D - Not what I was hoping for after the nose. It's not terrible but definitely disappointing for the first Jolly Pumpkin. Maybe it's old?

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Photo of quasimoto
2.75/5  rDev -30.2%
look: 3 | smell: 3 | taste: 2.5 | feel: 2.5 | overall: 3

A - Poured a cloudy amber with slight lacing. There is also very very little lace but very frothy.

S - Eucalyptus, pumpkin, nutmeg, cinnamon, and some lemon. Its kind of what pine sol would smell like if they used a pumpkin aroma instead of pines.

T - It also has that cleanser kind of taste. It taste like a lemon pumpkin pie.

M - Simple and light. There is also kind of a salty feeling on my tongue.

D - It's light. I couldnt drink this all night. The flavors kind of throw me off.

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Photo of BeerBobber
2.76/5  rDev -29.9%
look: 4 | smell: 3 | taste: 2.5 | feel: 2.5 | overall: 2.75

The look of this one poured out a hazy gold with a very rocky white head. When I got a nose on it it smelled like pickle vinegar with a huge ton of sour like vinegar. The taste was an explosion of sour up front with a huge bitter taste washing all else out mid tongue. The mouthfeel was very fizzy and finished very crisply.

I am sorry to say this beer was not my style. I know there is a large following of these beers but I just could not get into it. I do respect that there is an art to producing such a unique product. As for myself I will look elsewhere for my beer pleasures. Cheers!

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Photo of mactrail
2.77/5  rDev -29.7%
look: 3.5 | smell: 2.75 | taste: 2.5 | feel: 3 | overall: 3

I can see swivelling up to a tankard of this in some stone pub at the end of a rocky trail through a poor, dusty country. Really, it should be served in big plastic soda jugs out of a fly-blown booth at an Africa truck-drivers' crossroads for a few cents.

Pale hazy golden in the glass with a really nice cap of white foam. Not much lacing. Lightly fizzy without any real body. Mouthfeel consists of some tart sensation and that hint of fizz. There is just a hint of yeasty bitterness

"Subtle" is perhaps too strong of a word for the flavor, which is not much. It's more like a science experiment. There is a slight acidic whiff if you try to smell it. This is just such a shadow of a beer, that if MillerCoors came out with it as a new Blue Moon flavor, the Lite drinkers would complain. On tap at the Public House in La Jolla.

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Photo of RBorsato
2.82/5  rDev -28.4%
look: 2.5 | smell: 3 | taste: 3 | feel: 2.5 | overall: 2.5

Tasted bottle on 9/25/06 at Tria Cafe in Philadelphia, PA.
Labbeld as "Bam Biere Farmhouse Ale"

Golden colored with a huge white head and overcarbonated resulting in multiple pours. A funky tart and sour aroma and flavor actually not far from their Wit but a bit funkier and sourer. I would have a hard time other than color telling these apart in a blind tasting. Nothing gets to shine in this one ... malts or hops. Very light bodied and airy due to carbonation.

I normally like saisons but this is not much better than the disasterous Calabaza Blanca ... I thought to myself, "self, try it - it's gotta be better"; but ultimately, not much better. save your $.

Per Label: 4.5% ABV. "Bottle Conditioned and Dry Hopped"

($6.50 / 12 oz. bottle)

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Photo of adamette
2.85/5  rDev -27.7%
look: 3 | smell: 3 | taste: 2.5 | feel: 3.5 | overall: 3

Review from notes taken 10 15 09. Poured from tap at Jolly Pumpkin Ann Arbor into a clean, clear glass.

A Slightly cloudy but otherwise nearly clear, light yellow body with little to no head. 3.0

S Slight citrus to the nose. Really not much smell here. Interesting since the Hefe/Bam mix carried a more significant lemon citrus aroma. 3.0

T Well, really straight forward lemony citrus taste without a lot of complexity at all. 2.5

M Thin but made to feel a bit fuller by the lemon citrus tartness. 3.5

D Fair since it is, to me, such a one dimensional beer, it does not carry enough interest to want to drink it repeatedly. 3.0

Notes: I had seen this in bottles and read about it here on BA many times. I was looking forward to trying it here on tap. It is a fine, artisan beer but it is too one dimensional for me.

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Photo of ZAP
2.9/5  rDev -26.4%
look: 3 | smell: 3 | taste: 3 | feel: 3 | overall: 2.5

Not real impressed with this one..

Gigantic head emerges after the pour...nose has a lot of the barnyard elements..musty...a little bit of lemon...

Taste is very puckery and sour...lemons..very, very dry tasting and finishes that way as well...lacks a spicy component..

I just don't find this enjoyable.

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Photo of soupyman10
2.91/5  rDev -26.1%
look: 4.5 | smell: 3.5 | taste: 2.5 | feel: 3 | overall: 2.5

UPDATE - 6/1/08 - 4.5/3.5/4/2.5/3.5 - So I finally tried this one again when I wrangled up a bottle for $1.50. I must say, I think the last one had something wrong with it, cause this one was far, far more drinkable. Still a huge head that foams up over a light yellow beer with lots of yeasty floaties. Nose is sourness, and not much else. Flavor is tasty, especially if you like sour beers. Sourness, wheat, and tons of citrus (particularly lemon). Light flowery hops in there as well. Carbonation's too high, in my book, and ends up masking some of the complexity of the beer. Overall though, much better than my previous experience. Be warned though...this one seems very inconsistent.

ORIGINAL - 4.5/4/1/3.5/1 - I really wanted to like this one - Jolly Pumpkin's a local and one I'd heard good things about. Sadly, this was just no good. It looked great - solid copper color, slightly opaque, with some floating yeast. A huge billowy head on top that hangs around forever. Strong spicy nose of wheat, and lots of citrus as well (mostly lemon). Light sourness, making this one unique compared with other saisons I've had. Taste is...Jesus Christ. Straight sour, kicks you square in the nuts. Nothing else whatsoever. I thought this one might have gone bad, but reading some of the other reviews, I'm not so sure. Awful, a pourer (one of the first I've ever poured, I think). Feel is okay, medium body. I'm hoping this one's gone bad, but I'm not sure if I'll have the gusto to throw more money at it. Too bad.

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Photo of Murchmac
2.96/5  rDev -24.9%
look: 4 | smell: 3 | taste: 3 | feel: 3 | overall: 2.5

Are you supposed to suffer through a beer?

Ive wanted to try this brewery for a while. Im starting to like saison's so this seemed the perfect fit. I think this beer has bretts in it as well? Which is another thing im trying to like.

I think i'd like this beer more if there werent so many different tastes I was trying to understand. It's like learning to eat with your non dominant hand and then using chopsticks on top of it.

Good look. carbonated.

Smells bretty funky with some light fruit notes.

tastes of brett funk, appleness, sweetness, and then finishes peppery in that order.

I like everything about this beer but the brettness.

Take that out and the rating goes higher, like cheech and chong.

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Photo of Rayek
3/5  rDev -23.9%
look: 3 | smell: 3 | taste: 3 | feel: 3 | overall: 3

On tap at City O' City in Denver. Served in a snifter.

Bam is cloudy peach with a wispy eggshell head that quickly falls to a ring of foam. Leaves bits of lace.

Saison is a style I've really been digging of late, but this one just isn't doing it for me. The body is thin and the taste is too. Funk is the theme here. Apple, pear and straw fight against a lemon and vinegar sourness. Something seems way off. A light earthy hop presence tries to get through the sourness. Finishes dry, tart and puckering.

I like a good Saison and Bam is hitting few of the right buttons for me.

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Photo of woodychandler
3.02/5  rDev -23.4%
look: 3 | smell: 3.5 | taste: 3 | feel: 3 | overall: 2.5

This arrived with a thick, white head above a very cloudy, medium-amber colored beer. The nose was really funky, obviously yeast-driven, with a sour quality to it, like overripe fruit. The mouthfeel was somewhat thin and the taste had a vinous quality, like a dry white wine. The finish was likewise dry, with a lingering aftertaste of that yeasty funk. I have to admit, this was my first Jolly Pumpkin on draft (not cask) and I was disappointed. I got John’s Grocery in Iowa City to sell me a single bottle out of a six-pack just so that I could re-review it. That review has already been posted, so it might be interesting to compare my two reviews. One beer does not change my stance, though. Jolly Pumpkin IS da bomb, yo!

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Photo of beertunes
3.03/5  rDev -23.1%
look: 3 | smell: 2.5 | taste: 3 | feel: 3.5 | overall: 3.5

Batch #367/368. Shared with OKComputer. Poured into fluted goblet. Poured an almost clear light gold color with about 2 inches of white head that settled down to about a fingers width, and had very good retention and lacing.

There was a strong, and distracting, vinegar scent at the front of the nose. Behind that was the expected earthy yeast of the style, but none of the accompanying spice that I look for in a Saison. The flavor was, thankfully, lacking those vinegar aspects and featured the typically expected Saison attributes, grain, yeast and a bit of spice.

The body was fairly average for the style, medium and with just a lingering finish. Drinkability was good (but then, I think pretty much all Saisons are highly drinkable), and the beer went down easily enough. Overall, a nice enough beer, one that's worth trying if you see it, but not really a special example of the style.

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Photo of bheilman
3.05/5  rDev -22.6%
look: 3 | smell: 3 | taste: 2.5 | feel: 3.5 | overall: 4

With a brewery name like Jolly Pumpkin I expected a lot more out of this beer. Their other beers look crative too, so I was excited to try something from this brewery while I was in the Detroit area. The beer is really light in color and you hardly notice you are drinking it. It might be a great session beer, a great post-lawn mowing brew, but it didn't hold up as a single pint. Maybe the least tasty saison I have ever had. It's not an awful beer, there just isn't much there.

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Bam Bière from Jolly Pumpkin Artisan Ales
3.94 out of 5 based on 1,389 ratings.
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