New Belgium Brewing Clutch

Posted on 23. Sep, 2011 by in Beer Reviews

I figured I’d get a quick Friday morning review in before the weekend.  With GABF coming next week expect a ton of quick reviews so I can catch up and give you even more reviews of beers I tried Denver.  If anyone is going to be there and want to get a drink together just contact me through email at  I’d love to meet you.  Of course only if you’re not a fucking nut job.  Anyway on to the review.

New Belgium hit Virginia about a month ago and one of the beers they graced us with is a beer named Clutch.  Clutch is actually a blend of two beers.  A 80% stout and A 20% dark sour and for the most part after having this beer this blend is right on.  The stout qualities definitely come through more than the sour part.  The sourness hits at the end. 

Clutch pours almost pitch black but is more of a very dark brown.  You’re still not going to see through this glass though.  A small head is produced with a nice bit of lacing around the glass.  Now I mentioned up above that in the taste it’s mostly a stout but in the aroma the sourness does show up pretty well. Almost got some sour cherries.  Not a mindblowing American Wild Ale kind of sour but it’s enough to know that this is not a regular stout here.  Mixed in with the sourness is roasted malt. chocolate, and dark fruit.  You can kind of tell that the stout used for this beer was not a very complex one. 

The taste is kind of in reverse.  The stout shows up more here.  The usual suspects show up.  Roasted malt, chocolate, etc but then at the end of the experience the slight sourness comes in.  I can tell you that if this beer didn’t have the sourness to it and this was just a regular stout I would of probably been bored with this beer.  But the sourness adds nicely to this beer.  My girlfriend who doesn’t like stouts actually said she enjoyed this beer.  This brew rings in at 9.50% but really you can’t tell one bit until you’re done with your glass.  I had a little buzz going on.  Yeah I’m a lightweight sometimes.  The mouthfeel on this was medium bodied with a good amount of carbonation.

Overall I liked this brew.  I would of loved to seen a more complex stout here mixed in with the sourness but I wouldn’t pass up trying this beer again if it was offered.  Expect a barrage of reviews next week.

Found: Grape and Gourmet, Virginia Beach, VA
ABV%: 9.50%
Price: I believe this one came in around 5 dollars a bomber
What the company says: It started as chance, a sandwich shop encounter between a band and a fan. It ended as the Clutch Collaboration. This pleasing, two-part potion was brewed with chocolate and black malts for a rich and roasty overtone, then fused with a dry, substratum of sour for a bold and audacious flavor. Black as night, this beer is blended at 80% stout, 20% dark sour wood beer for a collaboration that begins with a sour edge and finishes with a big, dark malt character, lingering, sweet on your palate.
Other beers to try from this brewery: New Belgium 1554, New Belgium Belgo IPA
Other beers to try within the same style: Mikkeller Beer Hop Breakfast, Rogue Shakespeare Stout
Rating: B+

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