Let me start by jumping to the conclusion.  New Belgium’s La Folie is an absolutely stunning beer. Like the Tolkien’s magical little ring, the more you have, the more your desire for the La Folie increases.  If you don’t agree with me, you can go to Mordor.

Now that I’ve gotten the geeky little Lord of the Rings allusion out of the way, why should anyone care what I think about this beer?  Well, unless you don’t realize that I am the up and coming beer authority, I suppose you have no reason to.  But considering that this beer has evidenced polarization in the beer community, perhaps everyone’s input is a bit more interesting, regardless of beer blogging clout.

I would have never sought this beer out.  Despite the fact that I am a big fan of New Belgium’s way of doing business, I am not a big fan of New Belgium’s beer. From their 1554 to their Ranger IPA, it all tastes a bit weird to me.  In fact, I am perpetually perplexed at the number of who, folks jumping into the realm of homebrewing, decide their first brew should be a Fat Tire clone.  Sheesh.  But at times, a beers “grocery store line-up” falls far from the glory of their specialty beers.  When I read a “pour it down the sink” review over at Beer and Whiskey Bros, followed by an emphatic defense from Simply Beer, I had to try it.  I haven’t bought any “specialty” brews in a long time, due the-no-longer-existent *insert fierce sarcasm* recession, but after a couple of week of hard work, I felt I deserved it.  So I went for the La Folie.

Like I said in the spoiler of a first paragraph, I would just as emphatically defend this beer against Jim’s review.  This is a sour beer in the most sour of senses.  The acidic tartness literally burns the back of your throat.  But it tastes so good!  The Flanders’ style brown, which emulates spontaneous fermentation, is not unbalanced though.  Their is a formidable malt backing that adds necessary sweetness and compliments the sour apple and cherry notes.  There is a slight chocolate note to it.  Sours like this are to describe:  you just have to try it.

The moral of the story?  Just because you don’t like a brewery’s standard work doesn’t mean they suck.  Always approach a respectable brewery in hopes of being impressed.   What “lame” (in your opinion) breweries have pleasantly surprised you in the past?