Bam Noire | Jolly Pumpkin Artisan Ales

very good
875 Ratings
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Bam NoireBam Noire

Brewed by:
Jolly Pumpkin Artisan Ales
Michigan, United States

Style: Saison / Farmhouse Ale

Alcohol by volume (ABV): 4.30%

Availability: Rotating

Notes / Commercial Description:
No notes at this time.

Added by FightingEntropy on 09-01-2007

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User Ratings & Reviews
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Ratings: 875 |  Reviews: 352
Photo of Soonami
2.56/5  rDev -32.1%
look: 4 | smell: 3 | taste: 2 | feel: 4 | overall: 2

Bam Noire is not the beer that I signed up for when I drank it. It is a dark saison, which is unusual, but sounded interesting to me. However, as I am realizing with many JP beers, it tastes very much like all of the other beers they make that are barrel-aged, they just have a weird funk, with just a tinge of tartness. Bam Noire though was not good. I suspect the base beer before barrel treatment was probably very phenolic and plastic tasting from fermentation that ran too hot, because the finished beer is just not good. I can taste the fermentation flaws and combined with the barrel, it tastes like old water passed through a sun soaked plastic hose that is run through an old leather glove. I spent a fair bit of money on this beer and most people that drank it agreed that it was not good. One of the few occasions that I have drain poured a beer.

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Photo of oline73
2.91/5  rDev -22.8%
look: 4.5 | smell: 3.5 | taste: 2.5 | feel: 3 | overall: 2.5

Poured from a bottle into a standard pint glass.

Appearance: Pours a very dark brown with a reasonable amount of light coming through. There are three fingers of off white fluffy head and a good layer of head remains throughout.

Smell: Initially there is a bit of a sour smell. Some herbal/spice smell comes through with a little bit of fruit and sour apple.

Taste: Just like the smell, there is a mild sourness right off the bat. Following that, there is a little bit of roast and some spice as well. Overall I think the flavors don't blend real well and it tends to be a bit watery as well.

Mouthfeel: The body is a bit on the thin side. I wouldn't say that this one is super smooth. The finish is quite dry.

Drinkability: I don't think I'll be searching this one out again. I don't think the roast and sour flavors blend real well in this case.

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Photo of Daniellobo
3.78/5  rDev +0.3%
look: 4 | smell: 3.5 | taste: 4 | feel: 4 | overall: 3.5

Fair dark saison, good drink but not particularly memorable.

Presentation: 750 ml brow cap bottle. Label shows an illustration of a bat winged dog in blue and black tones. Offers short side narrative going over the main characteristics of the brew, and intent. Displays semi peeled off batch number (Batch ?58 10-21-10). Served in a tulip glass.

A - Hazy brown pour, good foamy head, fair retention, and moderate lacing.

S - Yeasty nose with a whiff of spices, and fruit. Faintly funky.

T - Roasted touches over yeast, fruity sense, touch of pepper, with a bit of sugar in the finish and minimal sourness.

M - Medium-light body with medium carbonation, somewhat dry finish.
D - Works well, although it feels slightly boring towards the end...

Notes: Not a bad brew, but it's probably the least memorable of the offerings from Jolly Pumpkin I've tried.

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Photo of BieresDesMoines
4.13/5  rDev +9.5%
look: 4.5 | smell: 4 | taste: 4 | feel: 4 | overall: 4.5

Pours a deep brownish amber color with a good head and some lace. The aroma is fresh oak, lots of florals and some good farmhouse & horse blanket stuff. The flavor has a nice mild sourness throughout with some light caramel sweetness and a nicely fruity character. The beer is generally dry all around maintaining a good sharp tartness and a mild but pronounced bitter and spicy hoppiness. The palate is very spirzy but full.

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Photo of goblue3509
3.93/5  rDev +4.2%
look: 4 | smell: 3.5 | taste: 4 | feel: 4.5 | overall: 4

Pours a dark brown cider like color with a fluffy two to three finger head which gives way to decent lacing on the glass. The aroma is a little faint but of green fruits. The taste is tart with green fruits on the backend and cherries up front with sweet malt. The mouthfeel is thin with mild carbonation. Drinability is good it is a very easy drink. Overall it is a soild beer with a nice flavor and an easy drink. Easily could have a couple.

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Photo of BucBasil
4.35/5  rDev +15.4%
look: 4.5 | smell: 4.5 | taste: 4.5 | feel: 4 | overall: 4

Poured from the 750mL bottle into a large snifter. The bottle is labeled "batch 462."

A: The beer is a very dark brown - almost opaque aside from a bit of light coming in around the sides. Very large head of more than 3 fingers, very light tan color and with excellent retention.

S: Pretty funky tart smell. Fruit profile mainly of raspberries, cherries, and some nice pie-crust malt. Currants are in there, and unripe blueberries and strawberries. Beautiful aroma that ranks up there with the better Belgian lambics.

T: More subtle up front with hints of light fruits and a slight oakiness from the barrel. Some slightly unripe grape notes. Finishes funky and slightly bitter with lots of unripe fruits and unblended lambic flavors - citrus peel and unripe cherries. Very tangy and funky. A nice reminder of my trip to the Cantillon Brewery in Brussels. Wow. Very faithful interpretation of what a sour should taste like from an American brewer. Excellent.

The tanginess makes it a little less drinkable than ideal, but the taste itself is almost irresistable for the style. Alcohol level is very low, so that helps. A good change-up unique beer that I might get again, although a bit expensive in CA.

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Photo of notchucknorris
4.15/5  rDev +10.1%
look: 4 | smell: 4 | taste: 4 | feel: 4.5 | overall: 4.5

A: Deep and dark brown and garnet in color with a head that balloons up in the glass as soon as it's poured, then stays at about 3/4 inch.

S: Spicy yeast, brown sugar, some funk and something that smells a bit like chlorine.

T: Surprisingly, a little on the sour side, which was nice. Some cherries, vinegar, and some woodiness in the aftertaste. Goes down smooth.

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Photo of klewis
2.7/5  rDev -28.4%
look: 4 | smell: 4 | taste: 2 | feel: 3 | overall: 2

Batch 528, bottled 4/1/10 in a 11.2oz stubby

A: Pours a murky brown with two fingers of frothy foam. Good retention and lacing.

S: A moderate dose of brett funk with citrus and mild spice aromas.

T: Some burnt, roasted flavors on the back of the tongue, but oddly almost no other flavor whatsoever - nearly like soda water (and this on a clean palate).

M: Light-bodied with fizzy carbonation.

D: I normally love JP beers, but this one seems to be quite off in the taste department. Not offensive, but really no reason to drink it.

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Photo of grover37
4.3/5  rDev +14.1%
look: 4.5 | smell: 4.5 | taste: 4 | feel: 4.5 | overall: 4.5

A $13 750ml bottle bought from D'Vines poured into tulips.

Appearance (4.5): A cloudy, dark brown with three fingers of fizzy, off-white head. The foam spiderwebs and recedes to a thick, half-finger layer with lots of huge, patches of lacing. Carbonation is very apparent.

Smell (4.5): Very strong funk with notes of oak, wheat, and maybe chocolate.

Taste (4): Tart and a bit acidic up front with some dark berries like raspberries and some sour grapes. A hint of sweetness and oak tannins in the middle and a dry, slightly woody finish. The aftertaste is of white grape and some vanilla from the oak.

Mouthfeel (4.5): Effervescent and light. Light bodied with high carbonation. It is a bit drying from the wood and little residual sugar presumably.

Drinkability (4.5): This is a very good wild ale and packs a huge punch considering it's only 4%.

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Photo of mmercede
3.85/5  rDev +2.1%
look: 4 | smell: 4 | taste: 4.5 | feel: 2.5 | overall: 3

750ml bottle served at the Kite and Key.

Appearance: Amber-brown with unfiltered haze. Pours a huge head that lasts till the last drop.

Smell: Some lactic and funk character. Some earthiness, roasty, and caramel aromas. Quite interesting.

Taste: an interesting contrast between a substantial malty body, a complex saison yeast, and a lactic and funky undertone. This is a great interpretation of a seasonal saison offering. The malty flavors are dominant and feature roasted barley, dark chocolate, caramel, and oak. The saison yeast adds a level of pepper and fruit flavors. The funk and lactic sourness are reserved, but really finish the flavor well. Well done Jolly Pumpkin.

Mouthfeel: The mouthfeel is the major drawback to this beer. The body is fine. However, I feel that this beer is over-carbonated...even for a saison.

Drinkability: THe mouthfeel and price definitely hurt the drinkability of this one. However, the flavor and aroma will keep me coming back.

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Photo of Adamthome1
3.12/5  rDev -17.2%
look: 5 | smell: 3 | taste: 3 | feel: 3 | overall: 3

Pours a dark amber, unfiltered look, a fantastic looking full handed head, pour slowly as not to over froth...head retention is A+

smells of sour apples and pears

for a very dark amber looking beer I'm surprised at the super sweet, malty body, only a very mild caramel or roasty flavor, it is dominated by fruity and earthy undertones, maybe some oaky aging, particularly noticed in the aftertaste

As it warms it tasted like old apples and pears, drink cold

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Photo of Hophead101
3.83/5  rDev +1.6%
look: 4 | smell: 3.5 | taste: 4 | feel: 3.5 | overall: 4

ok - second beer from my starter box from sitarist

beer poured into my chalice glass. color is a hazy dirty brown. decent off white head which is bubbly but not frothy. nice collar once it subsides, decent lacing as well.

smell was fruity at first but not overpowering. some sour notes, grapes, tannins and underlying brown sugar sweetness. earthy and inviting.

taste was initially sour, but mildly sour. this is not a sour - but the beer has a sour component to it. get more of the fruity tones and grapes all backed by a malty earthy sweetness. this is a unique beer, I am not wowed by it, but I keep going back for more tastes. I would call this a bit one dimensional, but I kept going. Kind of like the woman in the dark corner of the bar - you think she is hot, but you don't know for sure and you keep looking over her way.

it is well carbonated, almost a bit too much. not very complex, but still pleasing.

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Photo of timobkg
3.2/5  rDev -15.1%
look: 4 | smell: 4 | taste: 3 | feel: 4 | overall: 2

Poured into a Duvel tulip.

The beer is a very dark red, such that it looks brown. Holding it up to the light reveals it to be a very dark red, like a garnet. Thick beautiful head.

The smell is fruity and tart, like sour cherries, and definitely earthy and funky. As it sits, the fruitiness is replaced by sourness.

It tastes light, slightly tart, refreshing, and funky. And yet I find myself wanting more. I keep thinking that it tastes nice..., not thrilling, but nice. There's little to draw me back into taking another sip.

Drinkability is where this beer suffers. The first glass is nice, light, refreshing. But on the second glass, I'm struggling. It's light, low alcohol, refreshing, and yet the second glass feels taxing to drink.

Overall, I'm glad I tried this beer, but I'm not going to buy it again, and can't really see myself recommending it.

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Photo of Gobzilla
3.68/5  rDev -2.4%
look: 4 | smell: 3.5 | taste: 3.5 | feel: 4 | overall: 4

A: poured a dark brown in color with brown highlights that had a thin bubbly head and left very little lacing sticking to the glass.

S: the signature jolly pumpkin bretty funky oak barrel characteristics were there on the nose with vinegar pickle juice notes and faint citrus.

T: the taste also had the weird vinegar pickle flavors but with funky bretty notes and oaky accents. After a few sip the citrusy and various grain notes seemed to come through.

M: the brew was medium in body with a good amount of tingly carbonation which had a bretty, funky, oaky, vinegary, and slight dry finish.

D: I usually really like jolly pumpkin beers but this one was not something I can honestly say I truly enjoyed all around. It did drink pretty good though.

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Photo of innersanctum
3.62/5  rDev -4%
look: 4 | smell: 4.5 | taste: 3 | feel: 3 | overall: 4

Poured this domesticated Belgian into a tulip glass which enhanced the aroma of light cherry, strawberries and pine. Head contained lots of foam which must enhance the smell of this brew. This ale has a dark mahagony color and not very transluscent. Once that ale hits the pallete it is a stark contrast with the smell as a subtle sour tone covers the tongue. Be warned this is not a harsh nor unpleasent sour, but a light and ever present coating, yet the finish is very dry so there is no heavy lingering of flavor on the pallete. Its very nice really, and the mouthfeel is about as heavy as an apple juice, thus solid from sip to swallow. For a complex tasting bomber bottle this was very drinkable with the 4.3% ABV.

Overall this wasn't my favorite, but nonetheless it makes me want to taste other Jolly offerings.

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Photo of JoEBoBpr
3.65/5  rDev -3.2%
look: 4 | smell: 4 | taste: 3.5 | feel: 3.5 | overall: 3.5

Poured into a tulip glass from a 1pt 9.4 oz bottle. Batch 512.

A - Pours a rich mahogany color with some good head on it. The head is about 2 inches tall and its slightly off white with some really tight bubbles.

S - Aroma is yummy with some slight tart notes and some good sweetness in the nose as well. Some slight clove and yeast aromas are present as well. I smell some slight licorice and some slight cinnamon in the nose as well these are not in any way prevalent.

T & M - Very funky flavor. Dry and crisp and very very clean. There is some tartness in there that is slightly muted and a bit vinegary. There are some grainy flavors but overall there is funk, funk and some slight tartness. There are some woody hints around the palette as well. There is slight fruit sweetness that can be felt but the wood aspect kind off cuts this quick.

D - Not my favorite of the JP ales. It is refreshing but I wouldn't have this one over.

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Photo of BierFan
3.91/5  rDev +3.7%
look: 4.5 | smell: 3.5 | taste: 4 | feel: 4 | overall: 4

Poured from a capped 750ml bottle into a tulip glass. Batch 508, bottled on 2-11-10.

Appearance: Big khaki colored head has decent staying power. Body is a very dark hazy brown.

Smell: Smells like a Jolly Pumpkin beer, tart.

Taste: Tartness obscures the dark malts a bit. A little roasty, kind of has some porter flavors.

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Photo of stimulus
4.13/5  rDev +9.5%
look: 4.5 | smell: 4 | taste: 4 | feel: 4 | overall: 4.5

Poured from a 750 mL bottle into a NB globe glass. Batch 614, bottled 8/19/10.

A: Pours a hazy brown/red with a huge tan head that settles to one finger, mostly as expected. Great lacing is left along the edges.
S: Funky and spicy, like a typical saison.
T: Spices and funk on the beginning followed by smooth oak flavor and finally some sweetness on the finish (probably from caramel malt used to darken this beer).
M: Smooth and light bodied, with higher than normal carbonation.
D: Pretty drinkable, even for a saison. Not much detracts from this beer; it is simple yet complex, and the oak aging paired with the dark malts turn a crisp finish into a smooth one.

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Photo of despainmakesbeer
4.62/5  rDev +22.5%
look: 4 | smell: 4.5 | taste: 5 | feel: 4 | overall: 4.5

Clear brownish red color. Tan head, thinish but very lacey. Moderate to mild carbonation. Intense smoky aroma, combined with powerful musty, woody, leathery aromas. Very Earthy. Flavor starts out smoky and toasted, as drink goes down, smokiness fades to tartness and soured flavors. Delicious contradicting flavors in one drink. Amazing how flavors transition in your mouth. The ending tartness of the drink causes it to feel heavy when first on the tongue, but turns into a light refreshing finish. And over all awesome beer with amazing qualities. A very delicious, drinkable beer.

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Photo of jpoder
4.04/5  rDev +7.2%
look: 3.5 | smell: 4.5 | taste: 4 | feel: 3.5 | overall: 4

very nice beer from JP!

hazy brown in color, thin head that recedes quickly to a lacing

tastes (to my memory) very similar to their Bam Bier. darker in color, but similar in taste. probably need a side-by-side tasting to be sure.

nicely funky brett smell and taste, but taste had little/no sourness.

thin mouthfeel as to be expected.

very yummy! I could drink a bunch of this stuff. wish it had some sourness...perhaps if I could manage to hold on to a bottle and not drink immediately...

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Photo of Thorpe429
3.8/5  rDev +0.8%
look: 4 | smell: 4 | taste: 3.5 | feel: 4 | overall: 4

Reviewed from notes.

Pours a reddish-brown color with an off-white head. The nose brings forward some oak, mild sourness, a bit of roast, and a light bit of funk. The taste pulls back quite a bit and shows oak and funk more than anything else. The taste is a bit funky and makes the oak known. Drinks pretty well; another nice JP saison.

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Photo of SFLpunk
3.71/5  rDev -1.6%
look: 4.5 | smell: 3.5 | taste: 3.5 | feel: 4 | overall: 4

750mL high-shoulder brown glass pry-top bottle. Batch 426. Purchased at Libation Station in Johnson City, TN.

Appearance: Pours a dense reddish-black (clear, though) with thick fluffy tan head that won't give up. Almost like frothed milk.

Nose: Oh brett, how I've missed you! Lots of apricot and white oak, some faint amber malt. Some raspberry notes too.

Palate: Medium-light bodied and I've gotta say with my eyes closed, I don't think I could tell you this was a dark beer. Raspberry, sour peach, sour apricot, and maybe just a hint of leather. Finish is sour but balanced. Some lemon pulp turns up too.

Notes: Never had a sour dark ale before (at least not one that was soured on purpose), but I have to reiterate that I don't really taste the dark ale through the funk. Good stuff, but rather drink regular ol' Bam.

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

"Look. It has a dog in a bat costume on the label!" This was my friend's reason for buying this. Turns out the beer behind the costumed dog is pretty good. Poured into a Goblet.

A: Deep walnut with a dense cream cap. Head retention is good and bits of lace are left behind.

S: Funky is the theme here and it blows away everything else. Brett and barnyard sits on top of a light charred wood aroma.

T: The funk settles and leads to a fairly light and easy drinking beer. Roasted grains lend some nice flavor. Bitterness is very mild and adds a touch lemon and coriander.

M: The light body is quite dry and has the right amount of fizz.

D: This was an interesting beer overall. The flavor didn't quite live up to the promise of the nose, but I still liked it.

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Photo of Mora2000
4/5  rDev +6.1%
look: 4 | smell: 4 | taste: 4 | feel: 4 | overall: 4

Batch 512.

The beer pours a medium to dark brown color with a fluffy white head that hangs around until all the beer is gone. The aroma is quite a bit of Belgian yeast, along with some dark fruit, toffee and a little bit of brettanomyces character. The flavor is much heavier on the brett, as I get a lot of leather and orange citrus notes, as well as lemons, a slight bit of funk, toffee and yeast. The beer is very dry and is very easy to drink. Medium mouthfeel and a high, biting carbonation.

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Photo of Tucquan
4.2/5  rDev +11.4%
look: 4 | smell: 4 | taste: 4.5 | feel: 4 | overall: 4

Had this on 2010-10-09 in Columbia, PA from a 25.4 oz bottle. Batch 446/447.

A - Dark brown and mahogany. Lots of color but not cloudy. Large, tan head.

S - Levely. Spicey, sour, mildly sweet malt and a pleasant, wild yeast aroma.

T - What a nice surprise. Sour like a Rodenbach Grand Cru without an oak barrel, wine flavor. Excellent wild-yeast and sprouted grain without a roasted grain or caramel taste. Impressive.

M - Light body and medium-heavy carbonation. Dries quickly.

D - Oh yeah. Easy on the pallete. Not as wine-sharp as a Grand Cru. Top notch.

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Bam Noire from Jolly Pumpkin Artisan Ales
3.77 out of 5 based on 875 ratings.
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