1. Extreme Beer Fest. March 20 & 21, 2015 in Boston, Mass. Join us!
  2. The wait is over! Download the BeerAdvocate app on iTunes or Google Play now.
  3. Get 12 issues / year of BeerAdvocate magazine for only $9.99!

Pranqster - North Coast Brewing Co.

Not Rated.

Displayed for educational use only; do not reuse.

2,797 Ratings

(view ratings)
Ratings: 2,797
Reviews: 1,150
rAvg: 4.03
pDev: 11.91%
Wants: 110
Gots: 224 | FT: 1
Brewed by:
North Coast Brewing Co. visit their website
California, United States

Style | ABV
Belgian Strong Pale Ale |  7.60% ABV

Availability: Year-round

Notes/Commercial Description:
IBU's: 20

(Beer added by: kbub6f on 06-01-1998)
Beer: Ratings & Reviews
Sort by:  Usefulness | Recent | High | Low | Top Raters | Read the Alström Bros Beer Reviews and Beer Ratings of Pranqster Alström Bros
Ratings: 2,797 | Reviews: 1,150 | Display Reviews Only:
Photo of RustythePelican
3.13/5  rDev -22.3%
look: 3.5 | smell: 3.5 | taste: 3 | feel: 3 | overall: 3

Appearance: Poured into a Duvel tulip glass a nice golden orange, with a thin, 1-fingered head. Substantial yeast in bottom of glass.

Smell: Oranges, peaches, apricots, yeast, cloves and corriander.

Taste: Fruity and yeasty, but with an unpleasant metallic aftertaste. Two other bottles I sampled lacked the aftertaste, so perhaps it was an isolated problem.

Mouthfeel: Pleasantly thick with dense carbonation.

Drinkability: A nice beer, but the strong yeast aromas and flavors, combined with the metallic aftertaste I experienced, keeps me from rating it higher.

RustythePelican, Nov 27, 2006
Photo of TheLiterati
4.03/5  rDev 0%
look: 4.5 | smell: 4 | taste: 4 | feel: 4 | overall: 4

Loved the cloudy orange hue of this beer...just beautiful in the glass with a thin but substantial head that yields to a little lacing. Smells of citrus and bread, hinting at the flavor to come.

Mouthfeel is smooth and velvety, and the flavor has a laid back complexity. I agree wtih other BA's that this is not a Duvel or Chimay; however, there's just enough going on in the glass to keep me interested.

The citrus is of the orange-tangerine variety rather than grapefruit; yet there is enough of a hoppy backbone to provide just the right amount of bite. All of this is nicely balanced with a sweetness that gives way to a pleasantly dry finish.

After sampling this and Brother Theloneous, another Belgian-styled offering from North Coast, I have to say that this brewery does Belgium well!

TheLiterati, Nov 27, 2006
Photo of tcfishler
3.95/5  rDev -2%
look: 2 | smell: 4 | taste: 4 | feel: 3.5 | overall: 4.5

Orange/gold/amber with chill haze...looks like honey mixed with caramel.

Aromas struck me as fruity-caramelly sweet at first, but then some yeastiness became apparent with agitation and warming.

Rich in the mouth, with a candied citrus peel edge to the honeyed sweetness. Smooth and drinkable, with the alcohol well-hidden and no real bitterness to speak of.

Others make reference to Duvel, but I don't think this is as complex or lively...definitely not playing at that same exalted level. Nevertheless, a delicious beer.

tcfishler, Nov 25, 2006
Photo of SudNut
4/5  rDev -0.7%
look: 3.5 | smell: 3 | taste: 4.5 | feel: 3 | overall: 4.5

This beer has a semi-cloudy golden amber appearance with about a finger thick head and no lacing.

Smells like a yeast roll with cloves and hops mixed in.

The taste reminds me sort of a hefe-weissen with a nice clove taste minus the banana and wheat, but with lots of yeast. Sweet yeasty taste up front followed by hops and cloves.

Mouthfeel is light with low carbonation.

This is a great tasting beer could be a nice session beverage.

SudNut, Nov 11, 2006
Photo of Phatz
4.43/5  rDev +9.9%
look: 4 | smell: 4 | taste: 4.5 | feel: 4 | overall: 5

I was not expecting anything special when I selected this Belgian Pale ale out of my fridge tonight. Wow, I got so caught up drinking it I almost finished the thing before writing a review. It is really good.

Appearance: Pours a cloudy orange gold color with a creamy off-white head fades to a bit of a halo and little lace.

Smell: Initially I though it had some Chimay like attributes in the nose but it seems much more soft and approachable. Yeast and dough and sweet malt wit a hint of vanilla and oak tickle and tempt, in the nose.

Taste: Smooth and delicate, sweet and easy, and oh so tasty. Wow. Vanilla wafers and yeasty dough sweetness with a splash of orange citrus with spices, (coriander nutmeg & cloves at least), in the back end, make a very friendly drinkable brew. The after taste has a hint of alcohol and ginger cookies.

Mouthfeel: The yeast and malt give it a slick center while adequate carbonation holds up the feel and it is light and crisp but quenching, for a 7.6% ABV.

Drinkability: The feature of this beer. Was I just thirsty after a long day? Could be. But I am *defiantly* buying this beer again too find out.

Hope this is helpful.

Phatz, Nov 08, 2006
Photo of AltBock
3.2/5  rDev -20.6%
look: 3 | smell: 3.5 | taste: 3 | feel: 3 | overall: 3.5

12 oz. stubby bottle with one of the funniest labels found on a bottle. I found out from North Coast's website that it's actually an engraving by a Belgian artist named De Loose. It depicts Old World Brewmasters in an old tavern enjoying the fruits of their labors with everybody in the room. It looks like everybody is having a good time, even North Coast Brewing Company's Brewmaster Mark Ruedrich, whose picture can be seen on the right side of the picture above the wooden beer keg. To the left of the picture is the Government warning and on the right side of the picture is just their address. There is no date anywhere on the label and not even a code number stamped onto the bottle. Still on the best pictures to ever be put onto a beer label.

Appearance: When poured into a Snifter, the beer was a hazy light golden color with a skim of white colored foam. What was there of the foam dissipated away too fast leaving behind a few rings and no lace around the Snifter. If you look real closely you can see a spatter of yeast particles floating around the glass.

Smell: It had a nice mild aroma of citrus fruits, a pinch of hops and apples, yeast and it ended with a sugar cane like sweetness. More citrus fruits than anything. At sometimes I thought it smelled like one of my fall season favorite drinks, apple cider.

Taste: What can I say, it tasted exactly like smelled and in the same exact order, but the taste wasn't as strong as the smell. I got a burst of citrus fruits in the beginning and then came the pinch of bitter hops, yeast, and then the sugar cane like sweetness. The dominate taste in it for me was the yeast. Sometimes it smelled like apple cider, but it sure did didn't taste like it anytime.

Mouthfeel: I would have to say it's medium bodied and with a small dry aftertaste of yeast and citrus fruits. I didn't notice any of it's 7.6% ABV in it.

Drinkability: It was an average American take on a Belgian Ale that can be easily found and would probably make a nice alternative if you can't find any real Belgian Ales around.

AltBock, Nov 06, 2006
Photo of johnbonham1980
3.88/5  rDev -3.7%
look: 3.5 | smell: 3 | taste: 4 | feel: 4 | overall: 4.5

Tasty stuff. Poured it pretty gently, so not much head. Basically no retention. Fairly dark orange in color.

Smells and tastes like it should. Lots of apricot, balanced malty sweetness, not much in the hop area. The yeast is there but doesn't stand out. Tastes better than it smells but that's my own bias. I've never found Belgian style beers to smell all that great vs. how they taste.

Very drinkable, nice smooth mouthfeel.

Great stuff. Will buy again.

johnbonham1980, Nov 04, 2006
Photo of Naerhu
2.5/5  rDev -38%
look: 4 | smell: 3 | taste: 2 | feel: 3 | overall: 2.5

A - Small white head on a completely opaque dark yellow body.
S - Apples and lambic-like aromas.
T - Powdery, very sweet, no bitterness at all. One dimensional vanilla biscuit flavors.
M - Super fine carbonation, yeasty creamyness. Light body. The higher alcohol was not noticeable.
D - There is something dead about the after-taste of this beer. Something that reminds me the taste of cloth.

Naerhu, Oct 29, 2006
Photo of Byeast
3.93/5  rDev -2.5%
look: 3.5 | smell: 4 | taste: 4 | feel: 3.5 | overall: 4

Appearance: clear deep gold , with a small white head , and a moderate sliding lace left.

Smell: spicy , clove , some sweeter , yellow fruits , and just a hint of musty yeast.

Taste: sweet malty flavors mix with a spiced mix of fruits on the yellow side , some clove and coriander , a hint of the alcohol , a little more malt thrown in at the end to finish sweet.

Mouthfeel: slightly slick , and just a touch dry in the finish.

Drinkability: Very tasty and drinkable , especially for the abv. Nice flavor.

Byeast, Oct 29, 2006
Photo of Doomcifer
3.55/5  rDev -11.9%
look: 3.5 | smell: 4 | taste: 3.5 | feel: 4 | overall: 3

Poured an extremely hazy golden with a half-inch head that reduced quickly to a nice white ring around the glass. Not much lacing to speak of. Aroma is huge. Smells of yeast, white grapes, funkiness, spiciness, very complex. Taste is more of the same. Fruitiness, white grapes, tart, yeast, slight alcohol burn in the finish, also some clove in the finish, actually lots of alcohol in the taste. This beer reminds me alot of a saison as well, just a lot thicker mouthfeel. Very tingly on the tongue. Decently drinkable. Pretty good try on a Belgian style from Northcoast.

Doomcifer, Oct 26, 2006
Photo of KyleVick4
3.93/5  rDev -2.5%
look: 2.5 | smell: 3.5 | taste: 4 | feel: 4 | overall: 4.5

12 oz bottle

A: Murky dark gold, lots of carbonation but litle head not very impressive.

S: Sweet, the beer reeks of malty sugars. God. Once past that a little bit of spice, and some herbal scents.

T: Now the spice kicks in. And lots of it. Makes me think of xmas, corriander is prominent, followed by a malty sweetness. A touch of herbal hops is subtle.

M: Thick and chewy in a light belgian sort of way. High carbonation seems to lighten the feel.

D: Pretty decent, for a 7.6 abv it drinks like half its weight. I can not compare this to duvel mainly bc I think duvel sucks. And this is another fine drinkable beer by north coast.

KyleVick4, Oct 26, 2006
Photo of Osiris9588
2.78/5  rDev -31%
look: 2 | smell: 2.5 | taste: 2.5 | feel: 3.5 | overall: 3.5

12oz bottle, no freshness date. Pours a cloudy orangey, peachy color into a Magic Chouffe tulip, a little sediment floating amid the gentle flow of bubbles. The white head is thiner than expected, and dissipates quickly only leaving spotty traces of lace.

The smell is very yeasty, along with some straw, wet mulch, and a faint flutter of orange rind. The flavor delivers malt, yeast, corriander, and an orange zest, and plenty of alcohol.

The mouth seems dull, undercarbonated, and lifeless. It pretty drinkable, but the flavor profile and lack of expected complexity does not inspire me to drink more than one. There's at least fifty better brews of this style, if not more.

I was expecting a lot more from North Coast, and plan to revisit this again, it didn't taste like it was completely bad or over oxidized or anything, but maybe this bottle was derelict is some way--I hope.

Osiris9588, Oct 22, 2006
Photo of bditty187
3.73/5  rDev -7.4%
look: 4 | smell: 4 | taste: 3.5 | feel: 3.5 | overall: 4

Hazy, bright coppery-tawny-gold in hue, the liquid is lovely to look at. Brilliant white foam, at the apex there was almost three fingers of head. I was impressed with the head retention; the bubbles were slow to fade to a foamy small cap that lasted the entire consumption. The subsequent lacing was spotty and unorganized. Overall, this is an attractive beer.

The nose is fresh with a breeze of saltwater taffy, hints of pepper and clove, banana and bubblegum too with apples, straw, yeast, wet bread, with a finish of spices. For some reason I never respected this beer much, maybe that is why I haven’t reviewed it until now. A few weeks ago I tired it again with my beer brain on. I liked it. I checked my DBF and I had one bottle left from a four-pack I purchased in the spring. Anyway, the nose is soft and well-round, I found the aromas to be inviting. When I smell this beer it says, “Belgian Strong Pale Ale.” I like that.

I really enjoy the nose but the palate is still a tad muted and out of balance for me. The yeasty fruitiness, cloves, and musty notes overwhelm the fragile malt and the hops are not nearly bitter enough to cut through the sweetness. It is tart in the middle with some wayward funky notes, hints of wood, more clove and some grapes. The alcohol arrives in a flash at the finish but can’t cut through. I like the sweet/spicy aftertaste… fruity and soft but if there was a hop bite at the swallow this beer would really rock.

Medium-light in body, smooth creamy carbonation, I think this beer needs a fuller body and more active carbonation. IMO, the mouthfeel is a bit sluggish.

Pranqster is good. Sometimes I think this beer is only decent and yet other times I thought it was excellent. The sample I am drinking right now is merely good. When I go to Kansas City I usually purchase a four-pack, I am a sucker for these types of beers. However, now that I can purchase Unibroue in Omaha I don’t think I’ll go back to Pranqster anytime soon. While this is an easy to drink and likeable Belgian-style Ale there are better beers that have a similar flavor profile. Regardless, North Coast should be pleased with this beer. Worth a try.

bditty187, Oct 13, 2006
Photo of bodybyadam
3.73/5  rDev -7.4%
look: 3.5 | smell: 3.5 | taste: 4 | feel: 3.5 | overall: 3.5

I really like Pranqster for its character.

A: Cool label for the bottle, but I don't know who the imposed faces are. I'm sure there's a good story behind it. Pours a dark golden amber with a thin bead around the edge of my goblet.

S: A nose of banana and malt.

T: The initial taste of a light malt with a sweet hint of banana. Unfiltered and a slight hint of ETOH. Finishing tastes of hops and "fizzy" fruit.

M: Nice balance.

D: I enjoyed this strong ale, more like a brown ale. Great, must have on your list.

Elbows Up,

bodybyadam, Oct 11, 2006
Photo of quasimoto
3.43/5  rDev -14.9%
look: 4 | smell: 2.5 | taste: 3.5 | feel: 3.5 | overall: 4

A - it pours a slightly hazy light amber color. Big fluffy head that leavesa ring of lace.

S - Its not too pungent and has very little aroma. There is some spice and some toasty malt going on. The back ground has a huge alcohol bite to it.

T - Strong flavors of fruit, and bananas. Some clove, and lots of alcohol

M - Light and crisp at first. The alcohol warms the tounge. there is some carbination bite up front. Leaves the mouth with a little slick feeling.

D - Very drinkable.

quasimoto, Oct 03, 2006
Photo of bjohnson
4.38/5  rDev +8.7%
look: 4 | smell: 4 | taste: 4.5 | feel: 4.5 | overall: 4.5

A: Pours a dark golden color with peachish hues. Nice frothy two finger white head. Very frothy with excellent soapy lace.
S: Banana esters, belgian style notes, and spices dominant the nose. Slight orange peel notes come through.
T/M: Big wheaty banana esters with a bunch of spices--mostly coriander and cloves. Orange peel and lemon notes also present but are mostly intermixed with the banana notes. Smooth and creamy on the palate with a pretty large sugary sweetness and a slight grainy maltyness. Semi dry finish. One tasty offering from North Coast.
D: Highly drinkable belgian strong pale--one of the better American belgians I've had. Higher abv is noticeable in the chest by a warming sensation. Warming sensation is a good attribute.

bjohnson, Sep 30, 2006
Photo of Hibernator
4.43/5  rDev +9.9%
look: 4 | smell: 4.5 | taste: 4.5 | feel: 4 | overall: 4.5

North Coast Pranqster
12 oz brown bottle
Served in an Allagash tulip glass

Pours a hazy and cloudy orange with a bronze tint. A few random bubbles shoot to the top of the glass. A creamy head forms on top and then transforms to a thin lace that wraps around the glassware. Nice trails of sticky lacings cling to the side of the tulip.

Pleasant aroma with interesting whiffs of Belgian yeast funk, oranges and cloves.

Syrupy sweet flavors with a grainy quality. The focal point is a sugary, almost candy-like sensation with citrus flavors of lemon and fresh oranges coming through.Belgian-style cloves and spices mix in the sip to provide some complexity. Ever so drinkable at a surprising 7.6% ABV.

This beer holds up nicely and becomes more enjoyable as it warms to room temperature. I like swirling this beer around to unleash more and more of the depth. Hats off to North Coast on another great beer. True to style and dare I say just as good as most authentic Belgian Strong Pale Ales that I've had?

Hibernator, Sep 28, 2006
Photo of jtell
4.33/5  rDev +7.4%
look: 4 | smell: 4 | taste: 4.5 | feel: 4 | overall: 4.5

Appearance is a hazy dark yellow. Head dissipates quickly. Smell is yeasty and fruity. Kind of reminds me of a mix between a hefe and a triple. Taste is along the same lines and excellent. Not cloying. Slightly fruity, some banana, clove, and good belgian yeast. Would say it leans more towards a triple in flavor. Mouthfeel is a nice combination of rich and carbonated. Drinkability is excellent. Could definitely see myself drinking a few of these, especially on a warm day. Very impressed with this beer. I definitely recommend it.

jtell, Sep 22, 2006
Photo of DaveFL1976
4.2/5  rDev +4.2%
look: 3.5 | smell: 4 | taste: 4.5 | feel: 4 | overall: 4

The only unimpressive thing about this beer is the appearance. It pours a rather murky orangish-yellow with a fluffy white head that disappears in little time.
The smell is classic Belgian. Fruity esters, sweet malt and just a bit of floral hops hit the nose. The taste is great. It's on the sweet side and tastes a bit fruity, but oh so much like a Belgian. Mouthfeel is on the thicker side, with quite a bit of carbonation. Drinkability is temptingly good.

DaveFL1976, Sep 21, 2006
Photo of dblinkhorn
3.93/5  rDev -2.5%
look: 3.5 | smell: 4 | taste: 4 | feel: 3.5 | overall: 4

Poured from 12 oz bottle into a tulip glass.

Appearance - Pours with a small white head that is somewhat silky and dissipates quickly to a thin lace floating on top of the beer. It leaves behind little lacing. The color of the beer is very near exactly the color of honey.

Smell - Speaking of honey, there are obvious notes of it on the nose along with the expected sweet fruit aromas from this style. Some slight clove spiciness exists but is not what you would expect from a true quality Belgian such as Duvel. The hops are sweet and flora in scent, and the malt character is somewhat bland but slightly bready and fairly subdued. Little alcohol is present on the nose.

Taste - Peach and apricot develop the fruitiness with some floral accents from the hops. The spice is a little more noticeable now, but still leaves much to be desired. Some earthiness comes in about mid-sip and linger into the aftertaste. The finish is extremely bland with no complexity save some lingering malt flavor and a bit of earthiness. The aftertaste is mainly the same earthiness with just a hint of the fruitiness coming back. Except for the completely boring finish, this beer has a decent flavor.

Mouthfeel - The usual carbonation level for this style, but with some nasty tongue/mouth bite as you initially take a sip. The beer is medium-bodied and somewhat smooth, but again leaves much to be desired.

Drinkability - What you would expect from a Belgian-style pale ale. Quite easy to drink, but this particular incarnate a carbonation bite that is truly discomforting.

Overall, while this stuff certainly doesn't compare to ales like Duvel or La Fin Du Monde, it is a very good stab at the style. Like most products from North Coast, you can tell that this was brewed with skill and caring. Recommended.

dblinkhorn, Sep 15, 2006
Photo of mmcave
3.93/5  rDev -2.5%
look: 3.5 | smell: 4.5 | taste: 4 | feel: 3.5 | overall: 3.5

pours a foggy golden cider color with high lights around the base and edges. I can't see through this one at all. The head is non aggressive and dissipates fast. Smells of mild citrus, moderate to medium spice palate. No real alcohol sents, mainly the belgian yeasts and hops. The taste is pleasant not aggressive or demanding decently balanced, the effervescence is a little lacking. This is not by any means my favorite Belgian style golden ale let alone belgian strong pale ale, but its decent. I keep thinking of october for some reason when drinking this. Any how I doubt I'll buy it again not because it is bad by any means, but there are just so many more golden ales I like better.

mmcave, Sep 13, 2006
Photo of edmundfitzoil
3.83/5  rDev -5%
look: 3.5 | smell: 3.5 | taste: 4 | feel: 3.5 | overall: 4

North Coast Brewing Company's Pranqster from a stubby 12 oz. brown bottle and poured into a snifter glass.

The beer poured with a deep, lightly hazed yellow gold with no real head to speak of, which disapointed me. Fruity nose and lightly fruity with surprisingly hopped and dry finish. A drinkable but solid belgian style strong pale. One I would go for again if the price is right.

edmundfitzoil, Sep 04, 2006
Photo of karengarys
3/5  rDev -25.6%
look: 3 | smell: 3.5 | taste: 3 | feel: 3 | overall: 2.5

This pours translucent hazy greenish amber, no head, but floaty clumps make up for that. (I actually do not mind the sediment from an unfiltered beer). I rated this "average" because there is no foam whatsoever.

Smells nice and sweet

Tastes nice and sweet. I pick up a lot of banana, spices, maybe some cloves. It has a seltzery flavor somehow, though - not sure if I like it or not, for I can't decide if it is strange, or sasion like.

Mouthfeel is creamy, but edgy too.

Finish is sweet and oily, fairly good, no aftertaste.

This is not a bad beer, but when it was over I didn't say "i gotta get me some more of that". If you see it, try it. It may be up your alley - it really isn't up mine.

karengarys, Sep 04, 2006
Photo of allengarvin
4.4/5  rDev +9.2%
look: 3.5 | smell: 4.5 | taste: 4.5 | feel: 4 | overall: 4.5

12-oz bottle, into a chalice glass. Pours out a mostly-clear amber gold color with a small airy head that fades quickly. Very nice aroma: highly fruity, citrusy, with a coriander-spiciness and soft undercurrent of vanilla. Spices come out front right away, with moderate bitterness and earthy hop flavor, along with a strong vanilla-ish, lemon-zest note, a light touch of pale malt sweetness, and a finish that warms and lingers. Creamy mouthfeel, moderate body.

allengarvin, Aug 29, 2006
Photo of NeroFiddled
4.43/5  rDev +9.9%
look: 4 | smell: 4.5 | taste: 4.5 | feel: 4 | overall: 4.5

Pranqster pours a very hazy orange body beneath a creamy head of off-white. The head retention is quite nice, and even when it does drop, the collar that's left is wide and creamy. The lacing could be better for the style, as it tends to disappear rather than stick, but that can hardly be complained about either, as new splashes and spots are formed with almost every sip through to at least halfway in the goblet.

The nose is rich and inviting with an ample dollop of sweet, vanilla-laced cake. There's a thread of fruit to it as well, bringing to mind apricots and soft tangerine - Ah! orange marmalade!; a touch of grainy maltiness; a whisper of alcohol; and perhaps even a dull spiciness in the background due to the yeast.

The flavor is as the nose suggests, but fuller. It's components are tied together tightly and don't appear quite as easily on their own as they do in the nose. The alcohol is more noticeable, but given the style I don't feel it's out of place or unwarranted. It's nicely rounded and very well balanced - harmonious, if you will, going smoothly from start to finish without notice. Nothing stands out in the end, just a mineralish dusting of fruit accented malt is left, and you're ready for another sip.

Well refined. Well brewed. Almost quaffable excepting the strength. Certainly worth trying.

NeroFiddled, Aug 28, 2006
Pranqster from North Coast Brewing Co.
91 out of 100 based on 2,797 ratings.