2008 New Belgium La Folie

From what I’ve read, prior to ’10, La Folie was a Flanders Red from New Belgium that was corked & caged and bottle conditioned. This means that the beer should improve over time and age assuming it’s cellared properly in a dark room at a moderate temperature. After the ’09 La Folie (some say the ’08 was the last one), New Belgium made the beer a part of their Lips of Faith special release series, took it to 22oz capped bombers from the previous 750ML corked version and flash-pasteurized the beer so that it would cease to have any active yeast in the bottle. This means…marginally changes with age and, many agree, an entirely different beer.

A friend sent me an ’08 C&Ced (cork and caged) La Folie and we had it side by side with a 2011 bomber. The noticeable difference being the bottles but also that the 750ML ’08 version has a bit more sediment if you’re not careful to pour it slowly. The nose is more tart and oaky and the taste. Well, the ’08 was almost unbearably sour. Not on par with Bruery’s cider vinegar Mother Funker but it was very sour.

So, my question is did age make La Folie more sour or was the original version of this just a more sour beer than the pasteurized version? I know sour beers tend to get more sour over time but this was extreme. It was good and very well done. Not all vinegar but enough to keep me from pouring a second glass of it.


New Belgium - La folie 2011