Category Archives: 3 – Indifferent (buy if no other choice)

de Garde The Law of Winter

Brewery: de Garde Brewing
Country: USA
ABV: 6%
Style: American Wild Ale

Brewer Description: (from bottle) A spontaneous Wild Ale aged in oak barrels for three years with cider apples, vanilla beans, cinnamon, allspice, ginger & orange zest. Bottled still.

My rating: 3
My beeradvocate.com rating: 3.91
My ratebeer.com rating: 3.8

Intro: A 1 pint 9.4 fl. oz. corked and capped bottle, bottled still in November 2019. Poured into an Alvinne teku glass.
Appearance: It was a hazy golden colour with only a minimal white head and no lacing.
Aroma: Sweet, apple cider, vanilla, orange zest, almost perfumy, with a splash of cinnamon on the finish.
Taste: Sour, tart, apple, cidery, grapefruit, orange, funky, oak, vanilla, perfumy, with some light spice notes.
Mouthfeel: Light to medium bodied with very soft carbonation.
Overall: Interesting wintery holiday aroma and flavours. But I think that the combination especially of orange zest and vanilla was perhaps too perfumy for me. It was mostly fine on the aroma, but too much on the flavour. The apple cidery notes were good though.

Trillium Fated Farmer – Cranberry

Brewery: Trillium Brewing Company
Country: USA
ABV: 6.8%
Style: American Wild Ale
Other Notes: Barrel fermented wild ale. Hops – Aged Hops. Malts – Valley Pilsner and Valley Wheat. Adjunct – Cranberry

Brewer Description: (from website) Our Fated Farmer Series is a landmark step toward realizing our foundational vision for Trillium: Build a place that intuitively celebrates the intersection of New England farming, agriculture, brewing, and integrated community experience. The grist of each of the dynamic Fated Farmer wild ales is set on the structure of Valley Malt and is barrel fermented in 500L puncheons with our Native New England Wild Culture and aged for 5-7 months, before re-fermenting on freshly harvested fruit.

Fresh, locally-sourced Cape Cod cranberries provide a brilliant ruby hue to the latest interpretation of Fated Farmer. Bright red fruit aromas from cranberry to raspberry spring from the glass, while a bouquet of floral tones offers a depth of flavor to each sip. Subtly sweet, with an energizing acidity and underlying native yeast character, Cranberry Fated Farmer finishes nimble and refreshing.

My rating: 3
My beeradvocate.com rating: 3.97
My ratebeer.com rating: 3.7

Intro: A 750ml bottle, bottled on 19th October 2018. Poured into a Cantillon ballon glass.
Appearance: A hazy amber orange colour with a one finger white head that dissipated fairly quickly to a ring around the glass, while leaving some lacing.
Aroma: Tart, cranberry, oak, with light floral notes, and bits of nail polish here and there.
Taste: Sour, tart, cranberry, herbal, funk, lemon zest and oak.
Mouthfeel: Medium bodied, prickly acidic, with moderate carbonation.
Overall: Enjoyable aroma and flavours, although the acidity felt a little bit on the harsh side at times.

Du Brabant Lambic Magerat – Krieken & Pinot Noir

Brewery: Brasserie du Brabant
Country: Belgium
ABV: 6.5%
Style: Lambic – Fruit
Other Notes: 4 years old Lambic

Brewer Description: (from bottle) This beer has been brewed using the traditional turbid mash method, aged hops, cooled during an entire night in open vessels and was fermented and kept during 4 years in oak barrels prior to bottling. Our brewery being located at the boundaries of the Senne Valley, this beer qualify for the Lambic appellation. We released this beer as ‘Lambic Magerat’ our family name as it is traditional in Belgium.

Cherries and Pinot Noir grapes grown at our farm.

My rating: 3
My beeradvocate.com rating: 3.71
My ratebeer.com rating: 3.5

Intro: A 750ml corked and capped bottle, bottled in December 2018, and with a best before year of 2038. Poured into a 3 Fonteinen stemmed glass.
Appearance: A slightly hazy orange amber colour with a thin white head that dissipated quickly while leaving pretty much no lacing.
Aroma: Tart, cherry, red wine grapes, grape skin, oak, funk, with light citrusy lemon zest notes.
Taste: Lightly sour, tart, cherry, grape skin, oak, with light notes of apple cider vinegar.
Mouthfeel: Medium bodied with moderate to light carbonation.
Overall: To be honest, when I saw Pinot Noir, I was thinking maybe barrel aged in a Pinot Noir barrel instead of using Pinot Noir grapes. I think a more vinous character would have made this more interesting, as when compared to other kriek lambics for example, the fruitiness is not as obvious and there is a distinct lack of funk. It’s not a bad beer by any means, but not one of the top in its style.

Du Brabant Lambic Magerat

Brewery: Brasserie du Brabant
Country: Belgium
ABV: 5.8%
Style: Lambic – Unblended
Other Notes: 3 years old straight Lambic

Brewer Description: (from bottle) This beer has been brewed using the traditional turbid mash method, aged hops, cooled during an entire night in open vessels and was fermented and kept during 3 years in oak barrels prior to bottling. Our brewery being located at the boundaries of the Senne Valley, this beer qualify for the Lambic appellation. We released this beer as ‘Lambic Magerat’ our family name as it is traditional in Belgium.

My rating: 3
My beeradvocate.com rating: 3.23
My ratebeer.com rating: 3.1

Intro: A 750ml corked and capped bottle, batch 1, production year of 2015, and with a best before year of 2040. Poured into a 3 Fonteinen gueuze glass.
Appearance: A slightly hazy golden colour with pretty much no head and no lacing.
Aroma: Quite subtle, but it’s funky, damp oak, citrusy lemon, earthy, with maybe some notes of vanilla.
Taste: Like the aroma, tastes is also quite subtle, but there’s funk, apple peel, lemon, slightly sour, oak, and notes of apricot.
Mouthfeel: Light to medium bodied with no carbonation.
Overall: Reminds me of GCB, which I’m not exactly fond of. Lack of carbonation is also not my thing, and both the aroma and flavour seemed to be overly subtle.

Vault City Cherry Skies

Brewery: Vault City Brewing
Country: Scotland
ABV: 8.5%
Style: Sour Ale
Other Notes: Modern sour beer

Brewer Description: (from bottle) The return of our notorious Skies series! For this variation we jumped at the chance to use late season sweet cherries for a ruby red addition to the range. Equal parts rich, smooth and delightfully tart, Cherry Skies is the epitome of the Modern Sour Beers we make. To honour the complex yet smashable versions which have come before it we added hibiscus flower and Madagascan vanilla to accompany the fruit for the fullest and juiciest cherry sour beer possible.

My rating: 3
My beeradvocate.com rating: 3.8
My ratebeer.com rating: 3.6

Intro: A 375ml bottle with a best before date of 5th October 2022. Poured into a Lost Abbey teku glass.
Appearance: A deep red colour with a slight purple hue and a big two finger pinkish head that dissipated fairly quickly while leaving some lacing.
Aroma: Juicy, lightly tart cherry, blackcurrant, red apple, and a touch floral.
Taste: Very lightly tart, moderately sweet, mixed berries, cherry, blackberry, blackcurrant, and floral (I’m guessing it’s the hibiscus).
Mouthfeel: Medium bodied with moderate to high carbonation.
Overall: Cherry and vanilla should be a match made in heaven, but I’m not getting any of the supposed vanilla aroma or flavours. It was also not quite the cherry bomb I was hoping for as the floral hibiscus notes were quite strong, along with a whole bunch of other mixed berry aroma and flavours that crept in. For a sour beer, the use of sweet cherries also appears to have turned it on the sweet side, which I’m not fond of.