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Cru D'or - North Coast Brewing Co.

Not Rated.
Cru D'orCru D'or

Displayed for educational use only; do not reuse.
BA SCORE
82
good

196 Ratings
THE BROS
-
no score

(send 'em beer!)
Ratings: 196
Reviews: 180
rAvg: 3.61
pDev: 11.91%
Wants: 3
Gots: 1 | FT: 0
Brewed by:
North Coast Brewing Co. visit their website
California, United States

Style | ABV
Dubbel |  8.00% ABV

Availability: Year-round

Notes/Commercial Description:
This beer is retired; no longer brewed.

Brewed for Whole Foods.

(Beer added by: hyuga on 10-01-2005)
Beer: Ratings & Reviews
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Ratings: 196 | Reviews: 180 | Display Reviews Only:
Photo of ultralarry2006
4.65/5  rDev +28.8%
look: 4.5 | smell: 5 | taste: 4.5 | feel: 5 | overall: 4.5

Poured from a 12 oz. bottle. Leaves less than one finger of a tan head that quickly fades to a foam ring at the edge, and leaves a very small amount of some spotty lacing. Body is a beautiful garnet.

Smell - raisins, dates, maltbread sweetrolls, caramel, cloves, and spicy alcohol. Mouthwatering.

Taste - much like the smell, if a little less intense. A maltbread sweetroll studded with raisins and dates, and swirled with caramel and much spice. Very delicious.

Mouthfeel - full bodied and semi-dry.

Drinkability - this is very good, but just a tad high in abv to be sessionable, although it would be very hard to turn the next one down.

ultralarry2006, Aug 12, 2007
Photo of apintofknowledge
4.38/5  rDev +21.3%
look: 4 | smell: 4 | taste: 4.5 | feel: 4.5 | overall: 4.5

Pours a deep cranberry-burgundy-brown with a thin fizzy off-white head. Aromas of fruit and alcohol make this smell almost wine-like. For the taste, there's an initial sweetness of raw sugar or sugarcane, followed by a fruity middle of bing cherries and raisins. It all finishes with mild alcohol notes and a slight dryness that combines well with the lingering tiny bubbles of carbonation. As I drink, earthy, root-like, peppery notes evolve in the finish, while spices such as clove and cinnamon come through overall. The more I drink, I notice a little milk chocolate in there as well. Mouthfeel is slightly thick, but any heaviness is made lighter by effervescent tiny bubbles of carbonation.

Best served in a goblet, and wait at least 10-15 minutes after pulling it from your fridge. Overall, an extremely well-done American take on a Belgian... and hey, it's organic too, so you can even feel better about drinking it... not like there's anything wrong about drinking in the first place!

apintofknowledge, Mar 30, 2006
Photo of Metalmonk
4.35/5  rDev +20.5%
look: 4.5 | smell: 4.5 | taste: 4.5 | feel: 4 | overall: 4

Pours out an impressive murky, muddy amber color, looks raw and unfiltered and gorgeous. The head, while thin, is made of incredibly small bubbles, with copious carbonation feeding it, though it remains thin throughout the session. Modest patches of lace snake their way along the glass.

Smell is a fudgy, spicy, bready, yeasty tangle. Pretty much the stuff good dubbels are made of.

Flavor echoes the aroma perfectly, but there's more: pumpernickel, chocolate, chunky apple cider, raisins, fresh-baked moist cinnamon roll, and our good friend Yeast. Desserty...and seriously f**king yummy.

The mouthfeel is enigmatic. Has a nice gooey-ness to it, yet it's also highly carbonated (maybe a little too much so). The finish is so drying that it all but disappears immediately from the mouth, yet you're left with a fruity/chocolate-fudge aftertaste. Hmmm.

A bit on the heavy, sweet and alcoholic end to consider as anything but "good", drinkability-wise. But a delicious indulgence that's not too out of control or unwieldy. Really hit the spot.

Metalmonk, Oct 16, 2007
Photo of HardTarget
4.35/5  rDev +20.5%
look: 3 | smell: 5 | taste: 4 | feel: 4 | overall: 5

Bottle Inspection: Certified organic product, lists water, organic malt, and hops as ingredients. Evidently they’ve found a way to make beer without yeast.

Aroma: Aroma is primarily luscious bubblegum with rotten apples, pine, all spice, some minor phenols, and a bit of a vinous grape. Truly intoxicating

Appearance: Ruby brown with good clarity, a thin head of creamy coffee left no lace.

Flavor: Over ripe apples, Belgian banana, spiced apple and a hint of farm cider. Fruity and rich in flavor

Mouthfeel: Low carbonation, medium-heavy body, and a bit syrupy in the texture.

Overall Impression: Wow. Rich, complex layers of taste, outrageous smell, more, give me more, MORE! Ahem, highly recommended.

HardTarget, Oct 23, 2005
Photo of Mitchster
4.33/5  rDev +19.9%
look: 4 | smell: 4.5 | taste: 4.5 | feel: 4 | overall: 4

I wasn't quite sure what to expect when I saw this on the shelves but upon popping the cap, the nose proclaimed "I'm a Dubbel, dude!". Bought a 4-pack of 12oz bottles for $6.99. Pours out to a cloudy medium-amber, forming a modest whipped light tan head with average retention and lacing. Carbonation is moderate. The aroma is as expected, which is good. Full of cloves and browning bananas and some toasted grains, reminding me very much of New Belgium Abbey Double, which is my favorite of the style. Mouthfeel is tangy and spritely yet goes down smooth and has a medium-dense body. Taste begins with a ton of phenols, like magic marker, followed by abundant toasted barley husk, some fresh green barley, and sweet amber malts in the middle. Alcohol is certainly perceptable but not offensive. There are interesting rotting orange, almond, and kiwi notes in the middle as well, with alot of lingering leather and rotting orange in the aftertaste. Bitterness is mild.

Quite an interesting brew this is. It tastes like an authentic Belgian Dubbel (which also happens to be my favorite style), so North Coast gets props for having the skill to pull something like this off (something Anderson Valley BC failed miserably at)

Mitchster, Jul 22, 2006
Photo of Kromes
4.3/5  rDev +19.1%
look: 3.5 | smell: 4.5 | taste: 4.5 | feel: 4 | overall: 4

Pours a dark brown with fluffy beige colored head. Smells like belgian yeast...bready, spicy along with some roasted caramel malt notes, alsohas some floral notes to it. Smells delicious. A nice mix of sweet roasted maltiness and belgian yeast/spice. The rich malt flavor blends nicely with the spicier flavors. Good high carbonation feel and good drinkibility. In my opinion this beer has a cleaner flavor than most. I've noticed with others that there is a funkiness that permeates the beer, not that it's bad, but this had a cleaner flavor to it and I enjoyed that. Only thing that I did not like is that the caramel flavors started to dominate when the beer warmed.

Kromes, May 12, 2009
Photo of jdhilt
4.3/5  rDev +19.1%
look: 3.5 | smell: 4 | taste: 4.5 | feel: 4 | overall: 4.5

Pours a three finger cream head that fades quickly leaving traces of lace. Cloudy dark amber color. Light-medium carbonation and medium bodied. Molasses nose. Flavor is sweet baked molasses but not cloying. $2.50 for a 12oz bottle from Beverage Warehouse Winooski, VT.

jdhilt, May 14, 2009
Photo of NeroFiddled
4.28/5  rDev +18.6%
look: 3 | smell: 4 | taste: 4.5 | feel: 4 | overall: 4.5

Wow, beautiful label... and it's organic! But can the beer inside the bottle hold up to the appearance? Yes!

It pours a hazy deep chestnut brown body beneath a thin head of creamy yellowed-tan foam. Orangeish and golden highlights peek through. The head retention could certainly be better, and the lacing is limited as well :( , but perhaps this specific bottle just needed a little more time to condition and give it some more carbonation.

The aroma is quite nice with a strong note of cocoa and some dark fruit. Some floral hops linger in the background, and a touch of alcohol can be noticed if you look for it. Mildly vinous. Subtly candyish.

In the mouth it's medium bodied and smooth with a delicate caress on the tongue from a very fine bubbled, natural carbonation.

The flavor delivers the same cocoaish, chocolatey, and caramelish notes found in the nose, but they're much fuller. It's sweetish at first, but then the dark and juicy fruits (black cherry, plum, prune, raisin), floral hops, and splash of alcohol enter to thin it and dry it out. Firm bitterness... just enough to balance... really quite nicely rounded. A combination of dark, vinous fruits and subtle, creamy dark chocolates linger in the finish. Hmmm... mmm. Very interesting. There's almost a suggestion of Brettanomyces here. Leathery. Mineralish. It's like chocolate and wine. Very, very nice. Highly recommended. Quite original!

NeroFiddled, Nov 17, 2006
Photo of PorterLambic
4.28/5  rDev +18.6%
look: 3 | smell: 4.5 | taste: 4.5 | feel: 4 | overall: 4

Pours a rich, reddish-brown. Good sized tan head that drops to a thin ring and leaves no lace.
Smell is rich roasted malts, oak, maple, alcohol, yeast and smoke.
Taste is all of that the nose promised with no surprises.
Medium-full body with light effervescence, this brew warms the palate and goes down smoothly. Good stuff indeed.

PorterLambic, Apr 20, 2008
Photo of DarrellK
4.22/5  rDev +16.9%
look: 4.5 | smell: 5 | taste: 4 | feel: 4 | overall: 4

For a domestic attempt at a Bekgian ale this is a good attempt.

The pour yields a great tight head that leaves a nice lace. The aroma is malty and alcoholic and persistes throughout the drink.

The body is very good, not as thick as honey but nice anf viscuous. The finish is definitely maltyand aclcoholic. I'm not a big fan of high gravity being the star of the show but it works in thia brew.

The price was also very reasonable for this quality of brew.

DarrellK, Oct 21, 2009
Photo of allengarvin
4.2/5  rDev +16.3%
look: 3.5 | smell: 4 | taste: 4.5 | feel: 4 | overall: 4

Pours out a turbid, cloudy brown color with a light coating of off-white foam across the top. Nose has got a fair amount of sweet malt aroma, along with fruity-vanilla notes. Lots of fruit in the taste: candied apples, bubblegum-vanilla, and moderately-spicy phenols. Malt is more prominant than many Belgians, with a medium caramel-toffee flavor. A little acidic at the end. Medium-bodied, carbonation on the low side.

Highly drinkable Belgian-style. North Coast has really been turning out some great beers recently.

allengarvin, Nov 09, 2005
Photo of assurbanipaul
4.2/5  rDev +16.3%
look: 3.5 | smell: 4 | taste: 4.5 | feel: 4 | overall: 4

Pours a medium-dark caramel with a medium head. Aroma is some candy sugar and raw grains, like a dusty grain storage room.

Taste is malty, sweet with a small sour mash note. A little yeasty and with some indistinguishable dark fruit. Heavy on the carmelized malts and candy sugar, very much in line with a traditional Belgian-style ale. Follow this with just a touch of unsweetened lambic, something wild and yeasty and just a little bit soured and lactic.

Mouthfeel is a little heavy but not too much -- the carbonation keeps it from getting sticky. I like the interplay of sweet and sour, never found that before. Not at all bad for an organic (certified) beer. I bought a four-pack blind and am glad I did.

Who lists this as a tripel? Bottle and package carrier all say "Belgian-Style Abbey Ale." Spot-on for this style, but nowhere near a tripel.

assurbanipaul, Oct 15, 2005
Photo of Franchise
4.18/5  rDev +15.8%
look: 4.5 | smell: 4 | taste: 4 | feel: 4.5 | overall: 4.5

This offering I picked up in NY. Pours a murkey brown and leaves a thin spotchy off white head that quickly disappears. The aroma is Belgian candy, plums, nectarine, raisins, brown sugar, just a lot of crazy smells coming from this brew. The taste is so sweet, delicious, candy, slight tartness of orange, lemon, grape, candied fruit on the palate. The hops help keep this beer from being cloying sweet, overall this is a great beer I paired this with an oven roasted rack of lamb with red potatoes and brussel sprouts and it was spot on.

Franchise, Jul 27, 2007
Photo of Brad007
4.18/5  rDev +15.8%
look: 4.5 | smell: 4 | taste: 4 | feel: 4.5 | overall: 4.5

Pours a medium-red color with a decent one-finger head that lingers in the glass.

Aroma is subdued with raisin and sweet malt sticking through in the nose.

Taste is smooth with chewy malt, mild raisin and very little bitterness. Easy to drink.

Mouthfeel is full of brown sugar, raisin and chewy malt. Only a bit of alcohol warmth at the back of the throat.

Overall, smooth, easy to drink and not a bad dubbel to start with. Strong so use caution to sip this one.

Brad007, Dec 30, 2008
Photo of captenaj
4.15/5  rDev +15%
look: 4.5 | smell: 4 | taste: 4.5 | feel: 4 | overall: 3.5

I purchased this at the Sandy Butler deli in Ft Myers Beach Florida. I had no idea what to expect and was very pleasantly surprised.

Appearance: The brew poured a deep coppery brown with a two (small) fingered head. As I poured, I said to myself that the beer was just about the most perfect color a beer could be.

Smell: A very slight hops smell was present, with a fruit-like aroma detectable beneath this. The alcohol was also obvious.

Taste: Very smooth and pleasant. The hops were present but not powerful at all (a big plus in my book). There was also a taste of raisins or other rich smelling fruit.

Mouthfeel: A bit thin. The bite of the alcohol was too prominent for my taste.

Drinkability: I would love to drink a few of these but at 8% ABV, I would have to say the drinkability was limited.

Overall a very nice beer that I would love to try again.

captenaj, Feb 15, 2009
Photo of SLeffler27
4.15/5  rDev +15%
look: 4 | smell: 4.5 | taste: 4 | feel: 4.5 | overall: 4

The glass fills with a rich, clear, auburn liquid covered with a fine, mocha head that settles to a thin lace.

Bourbon leads the way, followed by plump raisins, thick molasses, and creamy latté, awakening the olfactory to what is about to come.

Stimulates the palate with bananas dipped in chocolate syrup followed by cherries and nutty tones.

Smooth as velvet with prickly, soft carbonation and an alcohol afterglow.

The complexity of this experience leaves one contemplative and eager to share another glass with close friends and conversation.

SLeffler27, Jul 19, 2008
Photo of IntriqKen
4.1/5  rDev +13.6%
look: 4 | smell: 4 | taste: 4 | feel: 4 | overall: 4.5

North Coast just never disappoints me.

Pours a typical dark reddish mahogany with a cream colored head that melts to a faint ring. Not much lacing in this one.

Aromas are rich in toasted amber malts, Belgian sugars, brown sugar and some candied dark fruits.

Taste is full of candied dark fruits like raisins and prune and lighter plums...toasted malt and dark brown sugar....some bread or biscuit yeast flavors and a very typical Belgian dryness.

Aftertaste is sweet and dry with a nice alcohol warmth.

North Coast nails this Belgian style...it's not a west coast or even an American take on the dubbel...they've nailed it. In fact I give them a 4.5 on drinkability because the alcohol hotness is very subdued.

Good job.

IntriqKen, Mar 08, 2008
Photo of cokes
4.1/5  rDev +13.6%
look: 4 | smell: 4 | taste: 4 | feel: 4 | overall: 4.5

First off, this ain't no Tripel. Nor does it claim to be. More akin to a Dubbel plus one.
Pours a deep mahogany with a tight tan rimming.
Nose goes through carob, pineapple, black tea, Cigar ash, root vegetables, brown sugar, and spiced rum.
It begins with stauch caramel maltiness that immediately gathers towards figs, dates, and tropical fruits. It is short lived, as a smokey dryness wells up, bringing carob and cocoa impressions with a minor rhubarb tartness. Fruitness resides with burnt plantain notes. Yeast qualities are earthen and dark. With its ensuing purple grapes, it develops a mossy, bemushroomed, tannic dryness that brings Viking (WI) firmly to mind. It's a fucked up, damp, murky, forceful yeast, but I seem to tolerate it fine, and thus it presents much like Vike's Abby Normal, which I enjoy a lot, as I do this. The reference won't mean much to many, but those that know will understand. It dries further on the close with burnt black tea and minor dark rum flares.
Lighter than median in build, the carbonation is steady, fine-grained and light. For its strength, this is a dowright quaffer.
It's raspy and funky, but I liked it plenty. Again, if you're looking for a Tripel, you're about a digit off, and you'll be pissed. Label this a Dubbel (or a Belgian {Strong} Dark) and dudes will be tripping over themselves to snatch this up. And rightfully so, as this is generally solid and a decent bargain.

cokes, Dec 15, 2005
Photo of andjusticeforale
4.1/5  rDev +13.6%
look: 4 | smell: 4.5 | taste: 4 | feel: 4 | overall: 4

Pours a terrific chestnut brown with a super smooth 1 cm head in my Duvel glass.

The smell is 100% banana bread made with molasses.

This is caramel, smooth sweet biscuit aftertaste. Just a nice bit of hops; no alcohol burn;
just givre it a swirl and its creamy as hell. this is another great beer from north coast.

andjusticeforale, Aug 20, 2006
Photo of VoodooBrew
4.1/5  rDev +13.6%
look: 4 | smell: 4 | taste: 4 | feel: 4 | overall: 4.5

Single 12 oz. bottle purchased at Whole Foods for less than 1/4 of their four-pack price. Go figure.

Hazy rusty orange with minimal head. Familiar aromas of spice and fruit, plus bubble gum. Lots of fruit esters on the palate, including banana and dark fruit, plus a sharp combo of spice and alcohol that's pushed along by some lively bubbles. Things turn malty just before mid-palate, then more fruit, finishing mildly tart. After the initial fizz wears off, things smooth out nicely in the mouth, and the hefty alcohol begins to do its work in the mouth and on down into the gut.

For an organic Whole Foods exclusive (I'm not going to call it a gimmick), this beer is quite good. Hell, this beer is just plain good no matter what context you put it in. Of course, I've yet to be disgusted by North Coast. It would have benefited from bottle conditioning in the authenticity and softer carbonation departments. But still, top-quality stuff.

Paired quite well with my girlfriend's Caribbean BBQ Chicken.

VoodooBrew, May 02, 2006
Photo of cvstrickland
4.1/5  rDev +13.6%
look: 4 | smell: 4.5 | taste: 4 | feel: 4 | overall: 4

On tap at Tyler's in Carrboro:

Draught arrives in a chalice, sporting a red-brown body and a cap of creamy tan foam.Plenty of fine-bubbled lacing remains on the glass.

The smell of the drink is fruity, with banana, plums, pears, and juicy grapefruit.

The taste of the drink is fruity with a bit of savory, somewhat salty caramel. Banana sweetness with plenty of toasty dry malts tangle with a fruity, grainy character. Plenty of alcohol warming with a refreshing flavor of dry green banana that gains prominence as the drink warms.

Superb feel and drinkability.

cvstrickland, Sep 01, 2008
Photo of BuckeyeNation
4.1/5  rDev +13.6%
look: 4 | smell: 4 | taste: 4 | feel: 4 | overall: 4.5

Cherry caramel with blazing orange peel edges; a gorgeous hue when backlit. The cap is the color of orange caramel mousse and is heavily frothy (if that isn't an oxymoron). I didn't expect the vigorous amount of carbonation and amazing head texture that one might see on an actual Belgian ale... and didn't get it. Still though, this is one fine looking beer.

Cru D'or smells authentic to me. That doesn't mean that it's a top-shelf version that can compete with the best Belgian dubbels, just that it possesses a more than respectable nose that shows that North Coast did their homework. Maybe it's as easy as using the right yeast strain, who knows? It's brown malty, moderately dark fruity (bruised apples, fresh figs) and a tad nutty. Add clove spicy yeast and stir.

I like the flavor even more than the aroma. While it isn't the biggest, boldest version on the block, the initial burst when beer first meets taste buds is impressive. It's lightly sweet and caramel malty with just the right amount of yeasty phenols to add character and, again, authenticity.

The cynic in me wondered whether this beer would simply be ACME California Brown mixed with a Belgian yeast strain (just as I didn't see much difference between Old #38 Stout and the organic Old Plowshare Stout). I couldn't have been more wrong. The sweet, fruity, nutty, spicy flavor profile is deep and getting deeper as I drain the bottle. This is very good beer.

I had some concerns about the body initially; the first few mouthfuls were disappointingly light. Things have come together nicely though and as I enter the bottom of the bottle I'm enjoying it immensely. Even though I'd like to see a wee bit more heft, the smoothness and silkiness of the mouthfeel cannot be faulted.

The second highest compliment that I can pay Cru D'or is that it tastes like an authentic Belgian Dubbel. So much so that I would have said that it originated from that country if I hadn't known better. The highest compliment that I can pay is that it's delicious beer that will be purchased en masse the next time I see it on the shelves.

BuckeyeNation, Jul 11, 2006
Photo of Dijeriduster
4.08/5  rDev +13%
look: 4.5 | smell: 4 | taste: 4 | feel: 4.5 | overall: 4

Bought at the brewery April 2009 - cellared at 50 degrees til 1/16/2010. First beer I've ever cellared....well worth the wait!!

A - Good thick head forms on the pour, great lacing. Head sticks around for a while.

S - Sweetish belgian smell, lots of malty ambers with a slight grape / currant overtone coming thru.

T - Wonderfully sutble beer after aging! Malty amber notes come thru with an undertone of currants. Currant notes come thru strong as it heats up. Slightly sour Belgian yeast aftertaste.

M - Nice creamy mouthfeel. Medium carbonation.

D - Quite high. Bummed I only cellared one bottle. This should be a main stay for North Coast - with a disclaimer noting the potential for cellaring.

Dijeriduster, Jan 18, 2010
Photo of Pegasus
4.08/5  rDev +13%
look: 3.5 | smell: 4.5 | taste: 4 | feel: 4 | overall: 4

Appearance: Medium reddish brown in color, quite clear, with a small white head, and thick broken lace.

Aroma: Spicy, overripe apple aroma, with subtle hints of pine, apple peel, and phenolic alcohol.

Taste: Opens with a profoundly spicy note of cloves and cinnamon, midway through the taste, ripe bananas appear, towards the end of the taste, bitter apple notes reign ascendant, and carry well past the end of the taste. There is a sweet, warming undercurrent of alcohol throughout.

Mouth feel: Very full, almost syrupy; no carbonation noted.

Drinkability/notes: Beguiling, and quite unlike any beer I have ever had.

Pegasus, Feb 20, 2006
Photo of acrawf6
4.05/5  rDev +12.2%
look: 4 | smell: 4 | taste: 4 | feel: 4.5 | overall: 4

Pours out a nice dark mahogony hazy brown with a brown head.

Smell. Rich with some dark fruits, raisons is dominant. Small caramel sweetness.

Taste. More raisons. It is quite sweet with a little bit of chocolate taste. There is also a nice spicyness and peppery with alcohol.

Mouthfeel. I find the balance to be quite nice. good amount of carbonation.

Overall i like this dubbel, not incredible, but its quite solid. I'm not huge on some dubbels, but i would enjoy having this in my fridge.

acrawf6, Aug 05, 2006
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Cru D'or from North Coast Brewing Co.
82 out of 100 based on 196 ratings.