The second Alvinne Fellowship chapter, 679 bottles in total of Cuvée Sofie with silverberries (a species of oleaster typically used as an ornamental shrub but producing edible sour berries), sea buckthorn berries and rhubarb - an interesting combo announcing sharp and tart fruitiness indeed... Some large, transparent, loosely knit, white-reflecting bubbles appear upon pouring, only to vanish into nothing in a matter of seconds; misty, very deeply orange-amber-hued, warm peach blonde beer, the 'headlessness' of which does not bother me at all, considering this is basically a bottled 'foederbier' of a certain kind. Powerful aroma: a deep, soft background landscape of dusty old and soaking wet oak wood - as with many Alvinne sours, I can literally smell the brewery here - and bready, caramelly maltiness supports a complex structure of indeed half-stewed rhubarb (including a touch of wood sorrel), sharp silverberries and tangy sea buckthorn berries with respectively a 'green' (or even dry tree bark) and an 'orange' (even orange peel) side to it, gooseberry jam, home made yoghurt, dry birch tree leaves, old and oxidized wine, oloroso sherry, old crumbled biscuit, wild apples. Flavor embarks on the same complex journey as the aroma, kicking off with astringent, sour berries (the silverberries and sea buckthorn berries combined but interwoven) paired with a wry fruit peel effect, merging with a recognizable oxalic acidity from the rhubarb - yet, as in many of Alvinne's top sours, this puckering tartness and astringency is backed by a supporting role of both fructose and malt sweetishness; carbonation remains soft - though not absent as one would expect based on the absence of head formation - and, humbly, does not prevent the overall mouthfeel from becoming eventually very vinous, even in all its dryness. Soft caramelly malt 'roundness' forms a solid background for all this tartness, but - unlike in some other Cuvée Sofie variations - it is still the tartness that prevails. Retronasal effects of dried weeds, green berries and tree leaves, dusty old attic, haystack and dried bread crumbs add further colour and complexity to a quite intense finish, where the tannic woodiness of the barrel, the tart wine effect as such, the rich and astringent berry effects and the 'green sourness' of the rhubarb help to establish a lovely 'burn', accentuated by a well-measured glow of sherry-like alcohol. Colorful, punchy, enticing, crisp and at the same time breathing a rustic, aged nobility, I guess this second Fellowship Ale does embody Gandalf's arrival probably better than intended. A daring choice of ingredients, none of which are new to Alvinne of course - but in every way a treat to sour ale aficionados. I was not expecting anything less, though.