|Highest Rated||Raftman (90 / 100)
||Average score||74 / 100 (Very Good)|
|Lowest Rated||Éphémère (Apple) (56 / 100)
78 / 100
12oz brown bottle purchased from Jane's Beer Store in Mountain View, CA.
Pours a pleasant hazed golden colour, with a fine white head that leaves pleasant sheeting lace. Carbonation is swift, rising through the light body in coarse bubbles. It looks rather sophisticated, to be honest.
Nose is immensely fragrant. There's impressive levels of lavender and peely orange; and it's generally very perfumed. I get characters of sandalwood incense, with rose and attar. It has a savoury undertone though as well, with hints of spit-roasted pork. It's complex and really surprisingly good. Even though it's really nothing like my favourite saisons.
Taste is pleasantly done—it's not so much the crisp, organic saison yeast I know. Rather it has the rounded, semi-sweet, semi-savoury tones of full-bodied Belgian tripels. I get baked beans, rose and bergamot, which is often a better set of characters for a Belgian beer anyway. There's something about this that really takes me back to the early days of my love affair with beer.
Feel is very light. Probably too much so—just a bit more weight, or a bit more smoothness would really help the beer.
Overall, though, I'm quite smitten. This is Unibroue playing their standard cards in an impressive way. For 4.5% ABV I'm just loving the complexity they get from this. I'd like to say that these guys are just underrated, but honestly, who doesn't love Unibroue? This is just these guys keeping the standard that makes them so good.
75 / 100
Part of my 2010 NYE celebrations. I'm also wondering when, if ever, I'll stop seeing Unibroue in Australian bottleshops, despite the freeze on exports.
Bright but very light golden colour, with a head that would be frothy and exuberant if I allowed it, but sits firm and fine in about five millimetres of foam on the top of the glass. Decent sudsy lacing, and the body is heavy, if not sticky. Looks the part.
Nose is pleasantly blended between spicy Belgian yeast phenols, and a light and sharp Eurpoean lager character. Some lemony characters come through, which really give a lovely sharpness to the nose, and provide a pleasant counterpoint to the smooth and round characters expected of the style.
Taste is light, but very subtle and pleasant, crisp in some places but round in others. Slight phenolic characters on the front, with a lip smacking dryness that almost leads to acidity, before the slightly spicy, slightly sweet Belgian yeast characters come to balance it out. Some oaky characters present on the back. Feel is very light for 9%, in the Belgian style, but there's certainly not a lot of alcohol present.
Yep, a nice beer, without a doubt. Spicy and bold, but subtle with the big characters throughout. Probably an easy beer to get into, but one which rewards you if you're looking for complexity.
81 / 100
Reviewed cold, but also sampled mulled.
Pours a reddish tinged yellow-brown. The still body has no head whatsoever, and no carbonation. It looks flat, but indeed unique.
Huge spicy-fruit aromas on the nose. Cloves, spiced mead, mulled wine. Sweet citrus, and even a little boozy brandy. Buttery sweet throughout; rich and amazingly complex. Cherries come through as well, but instead of being the dominant character, they just meld in with all the others. Fantastic.
Sweet, thick and coating on the palate. A delicious sweet-tart sharpness, blended with a lingering rich heat of alcohol. Spicy with cloves and cinnamon at the end. Mouthfeel is very thick - suitable, despite being flat. Very nice indeed.
An incredible beer. Very unique and very drinkable. It's nice warm too, but I prefer it chilled.
77 / 100
Deep brownish amber colour, slightly hazed clarity in the body, with a full and foamy head of off-white. Lacing is sudsy and Belgianesque. Looks very decent.
Sweet and slightly woody nose, with big Belgian yeast characters and a slightly organic sawdust character. Good amount of spice and a faint citric acidity. Lots of very pleasant characters on this.
Taste is lovely. Very decent Belgian characters, giving a slightly rounded note to the slightly smoky front. Robust and full, but sweet enough to temper anything before it gets too harsh or prominent. Finish is surprisingly fresh, leaving a pleasant crushed organic character on the back. Feel is smooth and light, adding to the really charismatic aspect of this beer. I'm very surprised at how light it is for 8%.
It's a lovely drop of beer. Unibroue do some wonderful things and this is no exception.
88 / 100
Possibly one of the last bottles to reach Australian shores, at least for a while, sadly. Chilled to cellar temperature and served in my Unibroue tulip, avoiding the lees.
Body is an absolutely beautiful cloudy but burnished ripe pear colour, deep yellow with hints of orange in its depths. Head is billowy and frothy, boisterously foaming up when poured. Pleasantly light body and thick sheeting lace as the head collapses. It's a wonderful looking beer.
Nose is crisp but round, full of spicy, earthy Belgian yeast notes, with hints of dark fruit, fig compote, pickled orange rind, and whisked vanilla essence. Such wonderfully blended and outrageously sophisticated aromas. Gorgeous.
Taste is smooth and round, but with a central vector of fruity acidity that cuts pleasantly through the sweetness. Spicy Belgian notes come up through the back, along with a subtle but structured spirit bite. Mouthfeel tingles with subtle heat and acidity throughout, just livening up the palate wonderfully.
Yes, this is a very good and very well-crafted beer. Extremely flavoursome, but so well balanced and light enough that it's supremely drinkable. An excellent brew that I'll be sorry to see disappear.
70 / 100
Pours a deep reddish-brown, the colour of scorched earth. Head is great when first poured but sinks. Body is murky as well because of a slight cloud in the brew. Light bead, lace is unimpressive. It almost had me until the lace.
Nose is ridiculously sweet, too sweet in fact. Huge boiled lolly aroma with hints of marmalade, peach, red apple, even red jelly beans. There's a hint of piquancy behind, maybe cinnamon, in fact definitely cinnamon, at the back. It's probably just the Belgian yeast strain, and that saves it from being really overly sweet. In fact, it is growing on me a bit. It's too sweet, but it's a nice complex, sweetness.
Taste is quite rich, sweet, Belgian. A lot of orange marmalade on the front with peaches, apricot and plummy richness, a hint of beautifully ripe cherries as well, then the sweetness dissipates by the mid. A lot of wine and oak come through then, with a hint of dark chocolate. Finish is woody, slight grain husk bitterness and a slight ground coriander flavour. Gentle lick of alcohol on the back gives off a mild tequila flavour actually, nicely bitter with some spicy hops and booze. Yeah, a lot better than the smell. Still not quite mind-blowing, it has a nice rounded flavour and a fairly nice steady palate journey.
Nicely foamy feel, with a lot of body, great amount of thickness. A bit ashen and dry on the back though, which is a shame.
Yeah, pleasant beer, but the noticeable alcohol adds a sharpness on the finish which lowers consumption level slightly.
80 / 100
Served to me by @laituegonflable, purchased from Slowbeer in Melbourne and transferred back to Sydney. Possibly one of my last Unibroue beers in Australia given their new policy on exportation. Sob.
Pours a cloudy burnished murky brown, with a filmy but thick head of off-white foam. Some lacing, but the retention in the head isn't great. But otherwise, not too bad.
Big caramel and burnt toffee notes on the nose, very sweet and rich. A little hint of something slightly spicy and round, with a bit of butter fullness. Quite belgian in style. Rich and delicious.
Taste is full and sweet, with some slight acidic notes of currant midway through the palate. Finish is lingering with toffee notes, certainly round and full to the finish. Very delicious all the way through, very few, if any, unpleasant notes - it's all full of pleasant, well balanced deliciousness. Mouthfeel is excellent, matching the roundness and slight acidity really well.
Surprisingly drinkable given the rich, full flavours. It's really smooth, with a crispness from the latent acidity - a really, really lovely drop.
78 / 100
Pours a very burnt red-orange colour, slightly purple-tinged. Head is beige and medium thickness with nice small bubbles. Leaves some beautiful lacing that sinks quickly but still nice. Body is hazy and pleasant.
Nose is very wine-like with strong oaky characters, very dark with woody notes, some red grape tannins, plums, sour notes, yeah, some passionfruit as well. Nice, pleasant, although the wood drowns out other aromas a bit. Very good though.
Taste is very complex, with sour notes and a lot of woody characters. Sweet, rich fruit, with plums and grape tannins on there, a bit of a sour soft drink lemon kind of flavour, quite rindy actually, and very dry with the woodiness, yeah a lot of wood, oak mostly, slightly resiny as well. Some raisin characters and even some cola. A bit spicy, but alcohol is very well hidden except for a slight bite at the back. Pleasant, complex enough, very like a good red wine, really. The comparison is unavoidable.
Mouthfeel is quite viscous with good alcohol warmth, very dry on the back though which is a bit of a turnoff. Well constructed though.
Drinkable - is a red wine drinkable? Yes. Is this even better than a red wine? It's beer. Of course it fucking is.
81 / 100
Pours a pretty dark brown, very cloudy with a massively frothy head of beige bubbles. Very nice lacing. Body looks a little thin. Looks pretty good overall.
Quite a sweet nose. Lots of raisins, and quite a pungent dunkelweizen note. Quite round and full, a little bubblegum, and a hint of phenolic booze. Lots of Belgian notes in here - pretty good and true to style. Very nice.
Pleasant oaky vinous characters on the palate. Really very quite like a heavy shiraz, with lots of grapeskin tannin. Tingly with latent carbonation, and very large notes of booze. Very sharp with heat, but surprisingly smooth. A confusingly delicious beer.
This is a really top drop, and quite unusual. It really does bring an aged red wine to my mind - even the clinging dryness at the end is reminiscent. I enjoyed it a great deal, even though I found it a little challenging.
69 / 100
Pours a lightly cloudy amber-brown colour with a decent, but small head of shiny white foam. Some good lacing, the body looks a little thin, otherwise a nice looking brew.
Light Belgian-style yeast on the nose, organic and a little fruity, a little deeper, raw peaty character and some spice. Overtones of fizzing acidity are a little unwelcome, but otherwise very decent.
The taste is where this beer really starts to shine. A wonderfully delicate, but intricate and long palate of lightly smoky malts, Belgian yeast and organic must. Some light bitterness mid palate, but this has simply declined to a dry crispness by the end. Body is very light, and it feels strangely carbonated - as though the CO2 hasn't dropped out of suspension. Mostly, a very decent Belgian pale, with a very subtle twist.
I'd been looking forward to trying this beer for some time. Unibroue again doesn't disappoint, although it's somewhat upsetting that I lay my hands on a bottle just as Unibroue cuts its Australian supply. Ah well.
Swirled to release the sediment, this pours a cloudy pale golden-straw colour, with an initially frothy head of white foam, that subsides quickly to a ring of film. Lacing is noticeably poor. Otherwise, it looks like a pretty decent wit.
Lightly tart notes of green apple peel on the nose, with some sweet citrus and herbaceous freshness. Really very fragrant and refreshing, quite sweet, but the acidity cuts through it nicely.
Smooth, sudsy wheat acidity, with a lightly herbal midpalate, and apple peel on the back. Extremely clean and refreshing, certainly not too sweet. It does lack depth and length, but for a slugging beer like this that's almost a plus. Mouthfeel is thin but crisp.
I like that this is not overblown with sweetness. It has the fruit acidity and character, but it's blended with a pleasant wit base, leaving it clean and crisp, not heavy or sickly. This is a fruit beer done pretty well - the apples lend some extra character to an already decent beer, but don't dominate the flavour.
90 / 100
Pours a very hazy copper colour with furious, prolific carbonation throughout the brew. A good bubbly head about 2 fingers thick sits as a crowning touch, leaving some pleasant - but thin - lacing behind.
Smell is gorgeous. Very Belgian in style with a lot of jammy, resiny fruit aromas; raisins, apple and cherry bark, and a good hit of spice as well. Very delicate whisky aroma at the back and a healthy woodiness. It's sweet but rustic, and wonderfully balanced.
Taste is slightly resiny at first, with a nice complex palate profile. Hints of figs, raisins and pine, with a really pleasant whisky character on the middle, along with an obligatory booze hit, which is obviously from the particular malt used rather than the relatively low ABV. It's a very welcome flavour, although not accompanied by a burning sensation. Very grainy flavour throughout but with a refreshingly brusque hop spice towards the back, cleans up the palate superbly and leaves a fresh bitterness as a linger. Doesn't leave much of a smokey character, but just a delicate woody touch towards the back.
Feel is dense and foamy, with a lot of bubbling, just a beautiful texture.
This is a supremely drinkable beer: balanced and complex, a lot of great flavours, very clean finish. In the Unibroue universe this is a dwarf, but it's clearly standing on the shoulders of its gargantuan brethren.
74 / 100
Enjoyed from a snifter.
Pours a pretty straight orange colour, basically the colour of Fanta, with a generous Belgian head, has thinned out a bit now but still sticks around in a resilient white crown. Kept alive by a quick and constant stream of bubbles. Lacing is excellent, although it webs out and drops down quite easily. An excellent-looking beer.
This had a very strong apricot aroma when I first poured it, less obvious now. Strong hint of orange peel and a generous hit of cloves on the nose though. There is a marmalade sweetness on there which is that apricot I first detected. The fruit is prevalent, but balanced beautifully with a spicy Belgian character, conjuring up coriander, a bit of pine and possibly cumin. Complex and delicious.
Potent flavours on that, for sure. A champagne character comes through first and then abdicates to a resiny hop finish. Throughout the palate is a candy sweetness on the back of the tongue, aspects of banana, maybe some deep red apple and a hint of passionfruit. I hate to say it - and can it be true - but there is a distinct, even obvious, alcohol on this. The flavours are strong but the 9% is stronger. Unlike so many Unibroues, this one could never attend a masquerade ball as a session beer. Mouthfeel is very, very full and thick but with a delightful tingling of bubbles, a real treat.
It's a shame about the alcohol poking its head out, really. But more than that, it's a disappointment that the delicious springlike flavours on this can't overcome, otherwise this would be an exceptionally drinkable beer. As it is, it's just delicious instead.
Had a bit of a froth explosion when opened, possibly it wasn't chilled enough. I left the bottle next to an open window on a cold evening. When poured, doesn't produce a lot of head - possibly due to the explosion. Pours a rich burgundy colour with light carbonation, produces nice lacing that just falls lightly. It cradles the glass but doesn't cling. Looks nice but no wow factor.
Quite phenolic nose with a deep syrupy rum kind of character fairly prevalent. Good strong hints of some sweet but tart fruits - strong raisins, some cranberries and a little citrus - possibly mandarin. Rum 'n' raisin nose, really. Smells impressive, sweet and powerful.
Taste has more of the tartness than the sweetness, with a heavy raisiny flavour punctuated by a red wine tannin kind of character. In fact, if there is a beer that is more similar to red wine in flavour and texture, I'm yet to find it. Has a lingering, earthy finish, I'd guess thanks to some Belgian style hops but the sensation is very reminiscent of dark cocoa.
Mouthfeel is very fluid, although there is enough texture to make an impression. A complex drop, this, with a very discriminating palate. It doesn't quite have the explosive delectability of a Trappist ale, but there's a lot to like. I would like someone to come and locate the 8% alc/vol though, because it sure as l'enfer ain't here. But then I've come to expect that from these Québécois geniuses.
Pours a rock oil black which turns out to be crude oil brown when held up to the light. Latte coloured head, very generous when first poured, only a little bit left now. Lovely thick lacing.
Has an almost smokey, charcoaly aroma on that. Quite sour and root beer-esque. Sort of like a creamy coffee but there's no real burnt fragrance, it's like the acridness of smoke without the burned character. Quite potent and surprisingly sweet.
Wow, intense flavouring. Deep cherry flavour on the mid with a slightly sour aspect to it and a powerful hit of rum, or some distilled liquor on the back. Front is a bit lacking and finish is there, but not as potent as the mid-palate would suggest. It's kind of sweet 'n' sour, quite nice, but it's in the middle that this beer lives. Very strong with a full Rich flavour. Mouthfeel is smooth and delicious.
Couldn't down this, but it's pleasant and quite impressive, for a while. It's not very drinkable, but it's nice.
81 / 100
Opaque cloudy very dark brown, with a thick and creamy mocha head of rocky bubbles. some carbonation, but not that noticeable. Just dark and rich and heavy looking. Fabulous.
Dark raw cacao flavours on the nose, a dusty earthy character and a hint of wet leather. Dark, gritty and dirty, and that's just what I want. There's a little sweeter rum-raisin character coming through as it warms, a little hint of alcohol, but not a huge amount. Still, very pleasant indeed.
Creamy and slick mouthfeel, like melted ice-cream, it's so smooth and slippery and rich, just gorgeous. The taste is a bittersweet dark chocolate richness, with a lingering refreshing alcohol bitterness, with even a hint of citric acidity - like grand marnier or curacao. Lovely, just smooth and rich, but sweet and darkly fruity at the same time.
What a fabulous brew; a rich and full number, with a huge deal of complexity, and a superbly hidden alcohol content. It's extremely drinkable for something I know is so heavy.
56 / 100
Pale golden colour with voluminous snowy head when first poured, head is not very dense though so departs quite quickly, steady lagery bead and not much lacing to speak of. Not that great, but it's what I was expecting.
Nose is really quite awful, to be perfectly honest. It's kind of an unfortunate mélange of aromas, none of which stands out, but there is a distinct artificial apple ester on the nose but it's uncomfortably blended with a sour character which just makes it smell like off fruit. If I'm to be perfectly honest, it has a kind of vomit aspect to it. It's not that intense and so it's passable, but it really doesn't bode well for the drinking.
Taste has the same characters, but the major distinction is that they're blended better. In fact the palate is really quite well constructed. The vomitous nose hits you on first sipping but it dissipates into the distinctly apple flavour which is nevertheless subtle and uniquely bitter (unlike Floris Apple, which of course just tastes like apple juice). The finish is a light, refreshing bitterness that is a bit of a surprise but very, very welcome. It makes the whole thing palatable, crisp and really quite drinkable. The palate is quite a reasonable length, largely thanks to the bittering hops which just announce themselves on the mid-palate but stick around for the finale. Full, rounded mouthfeel that is kind of like having cotton wool in your mouth, in the most pleasant sense.
Overall, this is a brave, polarising kind of brew with unique characters and a very refreshing feel to it. All I can really say is, thank God it's Unibroue who made this one, because they really handle a potentially god-awful beer with an expert touch.
I had quite a lot of anticipation for this drop as I feel one can only have the utmost respect for anything Unibroue produce.
Looks quite good, golden-wheat coloured brew pours a moderate foamy head. Very pleasant lacing. Very thin stream of carbonation. Nice-looking witbier.
Nose is standard witbier smell, but at the same time is an EXEMPLARY witbier aroma. Sweet light malts dominate with a great hit of tropical gruits, mingled as well with a large but not overpowering hit of floral hops. A very complex nose blended to perfection, and as good as a witbier nose will get.
Taste is not as great as I expected. The palate is short and a bit simplistic. Large hints of banana, pawpaw and mango (in short; tropical fruit) with a slight hoppy mid palate, but virtually no aftertaste of which to speak. The flavours are alright for the style and hey, it's very drinkable but after that explosively blossoming sweet nose this taste is very disappointing. I just wanted more, to be honest. Mouthfeel is velvety and smooth but overall, there is a lack of character once I pour this into my mouth.
79 / 100
Pale cloudy yellow body, with a beautiful crest of white meringuey foam. Fed by masses of fine-bubbled carbonation. It's steady, solid and beautiful. Excellent lacing. A truly excellent-looking beer.
Perfect Belgian yeast nose. Vegetative grassy characters, toffee-sugar sweetness and a deep herby tomato-like character. Not much of some of the other wit characters, like citrus, although the herbiness is pronounced. Very nice though.
Quite light on the palate, although that very pleasant spicy herb-character comes through. There's an initial sweetness, and a rather short, subdued finish, tempered by hints of fragrant Belgian yeast, and a nice lifting coriander-seed character. Mouthfeel is excellent, smooth and creamy, with a lift of carbonation.
A really refreshing, beautiful drink. Absolutely smooth and drinkable, this may be the perfect session beer. A wonderful drop, and a superlative example of a witbier.
89 / 100
Deeply opaque dark brown. Big rocky coffee-coloured head. It dissipates to a persistent film that clings to the glass.
Divine nose. Dark syrupy sweetness. Through the rich, heavy sugar comes a hint of fragrant berry-fruits. After some coaxing, there's some hints of pepper fragrance. Wow, I think you could smell this forever and keep discovering new subtleties.
Delectable taste. Starts mellow and subdues, but crescendoes with a rich sweet maltiness. Full bodied, rather heavy and smooth. Mouthfeel is velvety smooth and coating. Wonderful.
There's an alcohol spiciness on the back-palate which nicely cuts through the sweetness. Richly layered. This is a very fine beer. One I'll enjoy again and again.
Didn't get much head. Dark body. Looks like red wine.
Potent nose. Sorta smells like red wine as well. It's a fascinating smell, anyway.
Tastes pretty wow. It's interesting and complex. Difficult to drink, but for tasting, fascinating. It's rich and dark but drinkable. Doesn't taste like coffee. It's fruity, really. Tastes more reminiscent of a rich, dark plum. But not that fruity, cos it's also beer-y. And bitter-y. And sort of dry.
It's nice, dude, I really like it. I mean, it's not Chimay Red, cos my pants aren't white and sticky, but it's nice. Very nice. Surprising, really.