Jun 30, 2016

Cascade Brewing Sang Rouge

This bottle of Cascade Brewing Sang Rouge was bottled in 2013. Prior to that, the various red ales used in the blend were aged up to three years in oak wine barrels and oak foudres — a combined six years of barrel/bottle aging. As such, to say I had high hopes for this one would be an understatement. By the time I cracked open this bottle, I had already enjoyed a couple of the company’s products and they all provided excellent tartness and depth of flavor — but the potential within this brew’s mahogany depths set it apart.

And yet, I was disappointed to find the beer rather one dimensional. No, disappointed is too strong of a word here. I guess I just didn’t get the layers of complexity that I had anticipated. Yes, there’s plenty of vinous winey notes from start too finish, perhaps too much at times. And the oak influence is wonderfully strong. Dark fruits linger gently in the background as the wild tartness lightly grabs the tongue.

Sang Rouge is a wonderful beer. I think you’ll be hard pressed to find another company crafting a sour ale as good as this. Perhaps my expectations were unrealistic. For the money I paid for this bottle and the other five in my purchase, along with the aging and patience that went into making this beer, I wanted to be blown away. And I wasn’t. And that’s silly, I suppose.