L’Brett d’Or, Crooked Stave Artisan Beer Project, Denver

Style: Golden sour ale

ABV: 7 percent

Serving Type: 375 ml bottle

Malty? Hoppy? Neither, really; straight-up tart.

Reviewed: January 2013

If you’re a fan of sour beers and haven’t yet stumbled upon the Crooked Stave Artisan Beer Project, you’re missing out. Not that it’s easy to stumble upon the Crooked Stave taproom and barrel cellar. Located in a nondescript, wharehouse-like building north of the Highland neighborhood, this small brewery isn’t exactly following the location-location-location axiom. Nevertheless, Crooked Stave brewer Chad Yakobson is concocting some seriously good beers.

L’Brett d’Or, a golden sour ale aged in oak barrels, is one of our favorite Crooked Stave offerings. In fact, this is one of the better beers we’ve tried in recent memory. The beer pours a beautiful rich, bronze color. The flavors—Granny Smith apples, pears, vanilla, and oak—are exquisitely balanced. And although the beer is tart—Crooked Stave only concerns itself with this style—the taste isn’t mouth-puckering. We’d have no problem drinking a few glasses.

Would we buy it again? Let’s be as clear as possible: absolutely.