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Pranqster - North Coast Brewing Co.

Not Rated.

Displayed for educational use only; do not reuse.

2,686 Ratings

(view ratings)
Ratings: 2,686
Reviews: 1,143
rAvg: 4.03
pDev: 11.91%
Wants: 103
Gots: 197 | 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: 2,686 | Reviews: 1,143 | Display Reviews Only:
Photo of imblane
4.1/5  rDev +1.7%
look: 4 | smell: 4 | taste: 4 | feel: 4 | overall: 4.5

Poured a golden dark honey color with a nice foamy white head, very nice start. Smell was quite horsey and farm like, very typical of the style. Taste is smooth and malty sweet, banana fruity and coriander. Mouthfeel is what I would expect from a quality Belgian with just a hint of carbonation for a crisp bite. This beer is very drinkable even at 7.6% abv. In my personal opinion this is just a hair below Unibroue's La Fin Du Monde, but better than Duvel. Bottom line is if you like this style you will be very pleased with this very affordable beer brewed right here in California.

imblane, Oct 21, 2005
Photo of Oxymoron
3.7/5  rDev -8.2%
look: 3 | smell: 3.5 | taste: 4 | feel: 3.5 | overall: 3.5

No joke ah, this is a Belgian Strong Pale Ale is good. And I wouldn’t put a prank on you.

Pranqster from North Coast is poured with a off yellow color a little dark then typical golden style ales. The beer is cloudy and no existent head and no lace. The smell gives away Pranqster that its not imitating other beers as it gives that Belgium floral aroma. The smell is more fruity then hoppy.

Look out for the whoopee-cushion as you still, but don’t deter you from tasting Pranqster. The beer is pretty smooth for its 7.6% ABV. A good balance of sweet Belgian Pale malt and a citrus kick mostly of lemons. There are definite spice tones which is mostly pepper but traces of banana and cloves are noticeable. This is a good beer and wouldn’t mind having another, but there other Belgian Strongs that are better. Overall better then most but more malt flavor and slightly tone down the sweetness and then the jokes on us.

Oxymoron, Oct 19, 2005
Photo of andjusticeforale
3.9/5  rDev -3.2%
look: 4 | smell: 3.5 | taste: 4 | feel: 4 | overall: 4

This poured to a hazy orange, a bit less yellow than some belgian ales. This had a nicesmell of belgian malts, and a touch of hop-balance.

The mouthfeel is semi to full bodied and there is a nice sweetness that masks the alcohol. One particular nice thing here is that there is a subtlety of flavors not dominated by one malt flavor or hop flavor; there is an overall smoothness.

A great domestic belgian; a solid choice.

andjusticeforale, Oct 16, 2005
Photo of DarkerTheBetter
4.08/5  rDev +1.2%
look: 4.5 | smell: 4 | taste: 4 | feel: 4.5 | overall: 4

This beer has a wonderful foggy orange color with big bubbles in the quickly disappearing head.

With a smell I am pleased to detect a delicate Belgian yeast. There‘s a good malty smell along with wheat. There‘s also a bit of citrus.

It’s a bit of a journy to wade through the malt flavors in this one. There are a lot of great flavors, but they don’t blend together all so well. All the better for my palat. Spicy yeast, wheat, and some other different spices. It Really warms my throat up when I drink it and its very active in the mouth.

Good small bubble carbonation and nice thickness. Hits the stomach a little hard. Wouldn’t want to go through a sixer of this.

Good Beer!

DarkerTheBetter, Oct 07, 2005
Photo of MaltyGoodness
3.25/5  rDev -19.4%
look: 4 | smell: 3.5 | taste: 3 | feel: 3 | overall: 3.5

12 oz. bottle

Pours a hazy golden hue. Small head to start out that fades quickly. No lacing.

Smells nice and sweet and fruity. Nice aroma from the yeast.

Tastes sweet and fruity with some sweet malt in the aftertaste. Much milder than I expected from the smell.

Seems a little on the thin side. Would like a little more richness to the body.

Easy to drink, but only average as a Belgian-style ale goes.

MaltyGoodness, Oct 06, 2005
Photo of Frozensoul327
3.88/5  rDev -3.7%
look: 4 | smell: 4.5 | taste: 3.5 | feel: 4 | overall: 4

A good Belgian. Poured out to a rich yellow golden color with a nice foamy head of about a half inch. Nice lacing around the glass. Medium carbonation. Aroma was very nice, with hints of yeast, sweetness, malt, and some spice. Taste was not as full as the aroma, but still nice. Flavors of bread, sweet molassas like flavors and some grain. This brew could've benefited from more malt flavors and texture, but it was still a good beer. Good mouthfeel was rich and enjoyable. Good drinkability, I would have another one of these without hesitation. This is probably as good as you will get when coming to American made Belgian Pale Ales. Recommended.

Frozensoul327, Sep 20, 2005
Photo of Golden2wenty1
3.85/5  rDev -4.5%
look: 4 | smell: 3 | taste: 4 | feel: 4.5 | overall: 4

Picked up a single at Riley's here in Madison. Has a lot to live up to its big brother, Old Raspy.

Pours a deep amber/orange with a nary wisp of head in my goblet. Smell smacks you in the face with vinegar astringency, alcohol fumes, and oh yeah, some apricot/peach-like fruit. I don't know about this one. Thankfully, the vinegar takes a back seat in the flavor department, letting the light fruit, citrus, floral hoppiness, and caramel malt backbone take precedence, though there's still a hefty alcoholic kick in the end which could be expected from 7.6%, but I would have hoped to be hidden a little better. Mouthfeel is velvety smooth and crisp. Overall a perplexing Belgian Pale here. The fruity peach/apricot flavors were nice, but that overpowering vinegar scent and punch brought it down a notch from being a great Belgian. Still a drinkable brew though, and worth a try.

Golden2wenty1, Sep 17, 2005
Photo of battlekow
3.98/5  rDev -1.2%
look: 2.5 | smell: 4 | taste: 4 | feel: 4.5 | overall: 4

Pranqster pours a flat, very cloudy golden color. I can't say its appearance is very appealing. Smells spiced, of cloves, bananas, lemons, and bubblegum, with some medicinal phenol. Taste is similar, but it's maltier than I expected. There's a touch of a toasted malt finish. No trace of the alcohol, goes down really easy. Nice thick mouthfeel. The only knock on this beer is its limp, turbid appearance.

battlekow, Sep 15, 2005
Photo of macpapi
4.05/5  rDev +0.5%
look: 4 | smell: 4.5 | taste: 4 | feel: 3.5 | overall: 4

This is a good, and very reasonably priced Belgian from North Coast Brewing. It begins by pouring a nice light-orange color with a slight and quickly dissipating head. Its presence reminds of the sun as seen through hazy skies on a languid summer day. Pranqster smell is a fresh mix of yeast along with plenty of fruit (orange, lemon and banana most noticeable). A bit of spice presence completes a nice balance. This is a very full and pleasant aroma. The taste is nice and sweet, in a way one would expect of a good Belgian. It has a slight presence of malt, minimal hops and plenty of fruity goodness. Alcohol becomes more obvious while the beer warms, but not in an unpleasant way. In the mouth, it is pretty light and moderately carbonated. It is a bit biting on the tongue, though, not in the most beneficial way.

Overall, this is a more than respectable effort. It does not belong in the pantheon of great Belgian style beers, but is more than drinkable. Neither is it a beer I would want to drink all night, but more along the lines of enjoying one or two with a nice, tasty meal.

macpapi, Aug 24, 2005
Photo of rrwiltse
4.25/5  rDev +5.5%
look: 4.5 | smell: 4 | taste: 4.5 | feel: 4 | overall: 4

A great Belgian style pale ale brewed in the US.
Pours nice, very little head which disappears quickly. A pleasant orange-golden color, very close to the appearance of a hefeweizen.
Nice citrusy aroma with a bit o' yeastiness. The citrusy taste (orange and lemon for sure) hits you right away and slides into a slightly alcoholy tingle...though this beer hides its high ABV VERY well! It would be oh so easy to mess yourself up with! A little too drinkable for its ABV!

rrwiltse, Aug 20, 2005
Photo of semihobo
4.38/5  rDev +8.7%
look: 4 | smell: 4 | taste: 4.5 | feel: 4.5 | overall: 4.5

First BSPA I've had, in a growler. Yum.

Cloudy appearance, nice bubblage. Nice lacing for most of the pints, although I didn't let them sit long. Small bubbles, head responded well to how aggressive my pours were, although could have had bigger heads. Very alluring pints screaming "drink me!"

Mix of wheat and Belgian smells, spices like coriander and a lot of fruit. Some hops, some malts, good yeast action -- delicious. Touch of dairy, like 2% milk in place of skim. I haven't had rivals to this beer but it is really something. I can share it with total rookies or experienced beer drinkers. Lots going on here that you can dissect but you can also just close your eyes and taste the goodness.

Very dairy textured, like rich cream with some pleasant bubbles. The mouthfeel is worst when your mouth is empty - it needs more.

Great drinkability. The high alcohol is hidden -- I was planning on driving, but after having a pint and some I checked the ABV and realized why I felt funny. Quaffable! Few beers are this good AND accessible. As it warmed, it got a little worse, otherwise a 5 on drinkability... I don't think it would be in glasses long enough to get warm with some folks. Dangerously good, this is quenching and complex.

semihobo, Aug 15, 2005
Photo of ReebShorts
3.58/5  rDev -11.2%
look: 4 | smell: 4 | taste: 3.5 | feel: 3 | overall: 3.5

Ok, about a 1/4 inch head on a semi-agressive pour that did not stick around long. Still decent lacing though clinging to the side on each gulp. color is kind of a glowing yellow, and cloudy, in fact it looks like a Hef.

Smell was yeast, mild spice, and some citrus (lemon, lime). smells good enough now for a sip.

Not bad, a little fizzy, but the flavor is pleasant enough, there is just enough spice to counter the citrus I was smelling. It's hard to taste the alcohol here, it's disguised very well for a 7.6%. However this felt a little thick and left a slight yeast pastiness on the pallete. Somethinig in the mix was just off, not sure what. Overall still a good beer i'd drink again.

ReebShorts, Aug 13, 2005
Photo of danielharper
3.98/5  rDev -1.2%
look: 4.5 | smell: 4 | taste: 4 | feel: 4.5 | overall: 3.5

Purchased from Midtown Wine and Sprits, Nashville, TN.

Appearance on this brew is a very dingy yellow-orange color with a cloudy body and a full-bodied off-white head. It looks almost like a mix of pineapple and orange juice, but with a bit cloudier appearance.

The aroma is fairly interesting, as it almost smells like honey, very sweet and un-"beer"-like for an ale to smell like. It also has a bit of hoppiness in the nose, a very solid and inviting aroma for a beer to have.

Taste is good as well, very smooth up front with some bitterness on the backend, again with the honey notes in-between. Flavorful and good, I enjoy this beer quite a bit.

The mouthfeel here is thick and tasty -- it is highly carbonated which gives it some bite, but creamy and smooth (again like honey, at least on the consistency) and coats the tongue and throat nicely. Pleasant and sweet.

Overall I give this a high score for drinkability, except that the high alcohol gets in the way of having one too fast or having more than one or two at a sitting. This is a very good beer, and it's very nice with good food, but I can't exactly say that it's compulsively drinkable.

I will certainly buy this beer again.

danielharper, Aug 12, 2005
Photo of bigdeuce
3.53/5  rDev -12.4%
look: 4 | smell: 3 | taste: 3.5 | feel: 3.5 | overall: 4

Boy, I thought when I bought this yesterday, I was the only one in the world drinking it. (see it's in Columbus, OH, too!) This is a good beer, although I prefer North Coast Brewing Co's Imperial Stout.

Kinda chewy mouthfeel, nice taste to it. I found it similar to Sam Adam's White Ale, which I enjoy also. Smell was decent, not much head retention and the taste was enjoyable. For a squatty bottle, it packs a huge punch, which I also enjoy. But I didn't find this beer to be of top Belgian quality but I will buy it again and it's light years better than any American Macro.

bigdeuce, Jul 31, 2005
Photo of TurdFurgison
3.73/5  rDev -7.4%
look: 4 | smell: 4 | taste: 3.5 | feel: 3.5 | overall: 4

Presentation: Poured from 12oz bottle into Delirium chalice.

Appearance: Golden orange, actually kind of dark orange.

Smell: Very inviting aroma, with fruit and spice.

Taste: Really good. Some burning spice, with banana and grape, maybe also bubblegum. Lots in here.

Notes: Very very good. I think I prefer Golden Monkey as an American Trippel of choice, but this stuff is absolutely OK anytime!

TurdFurgison, Jul 30, 2005
Photo of robertp1024
4.25/5  rDev +5.5%
look: 4 | smell: 4.5 | taste: 4 | feel: 4.5 | overall: 4.5

Excellent sweet fruity belgian ale. This beer pours a cloudy honey golder color, with a slight head, which doesn't lace at all. The head disappeared quite quickly. The scent was fruity and sweet. Slightly yeasty, slightly spices, but very fruity. The flavor was powerful. Strong fruits, like orange, peaches and apricot. Slight yeast flavor. Very smooth, very sweet. A very good belgian ale for those sweet ale lovers.

robertp1024, Jul 22, 2005
Photo of DogFood11
4.03/5  rDev 0%
look: 4 | smell: 3.5 | taste: 4.5 | feel: 4 | overall: 3.5

What is that smell? thats the first question I had. So I kept sniffin' and decided it was just a bit yeasty, Once I got past that the complex aroma's starting to come through. Great Appearance frothy light tan colored head and a rich deep almost unfiltered type appearance like a heff.

The taste remarkable. Once again American breweries showing imports who is boss. The bartender said the staff does shots of this brew after closing!! I'd much rather just have a pint but hey they are all aspiring "actors" in santa monica so go figure their logic. I'll be hunting this baby down from now on....great representation of a belgian strong ale.

DogFood11, Jul 22, 2005
Photo of BuckeyeNation
4.1/5  rDev +1.7%
look: 4 | smell: 4 | taste: 4 | feel: 4 | overall: 4.5

Lightly flecked, sun-ripened apricot with a small amount of visible carbonation. The cap is lemony cream in color and is a bit too soft to be rocky. It does hold its shape pretty well however. There isn't much lace; just a thin, soapy collar.

The nose is more citrus fruity than comparable offerings from Belgium. Perhaps that's because of the absence (at least by my nose) of that distinctively funky, clove-intensive Belgian yeast. On second sniff, I pick up the faint aroma of spice, but am unable to be specific regarding which one(s). Note: although the nose became more assertive with warming, it could have been more assertive still.

It's funny how some beer doesn't give up its secrets until it actually contacts the taste buds. Each sip delivers a tangy melange of peach and apricot, with a moderate dusting of clove and something muskier, earthier. Cardamom perhaps. Ethanol is noted, but isn't bothersome.

In my experience, this style has a wide range of sweetness, from syrupy and borderline cloying, to as dry and as puckery as unripe fruit. This beer falls in the smack dab middle; the best of all worlds if you're not a fan of extremes. The body/mouthfeel is neither light nor heavy and the level of carbonation is generous for North America and a little lacking for Belgium.

Pranqster is a fine example of a BSPA and was a pleasure to drink. It's a tweener in terms of its flavor score and could just as easily have been granted the next highest. I'm comfortable in recommending it to lovers of this style in particular and to lovers of good beer in general. North Coast has reason to be proud of this one.

BuckeyeNation, Jul 18, 2005
Photo of Gueuzedude
3.65/5  rDev -9.4%
look: 3 | smell: 4 | taste: 4 | feel: 3 | overall: 3

Pours a lightly hazy copper-gold color and is topped by a frothy, pale cream colored head. The aroma is spicy and herbal with an nose that makes me think that the Chimay strain of yeast was used to ferment this beer. The taste is lightly sweet with a medium fullness on the palate, that is typically a little to heavy, but well within the American interpretation of a Belgian beer (afraid to use adjuncts/sugar?). The taste has notes of ginger, a grassy herbal character, coriander, lemon, and pears. This beer has some nice flavors (though I am not a huge fan of the Chimay signature), but is a little too full on the palate and missing a little something else that would make this beer really good.

Gueuzedude, Jul 17, 2005
Photo of dgallina
3.48/5  rDev -13.6%
look: 3 | smell: 3.5 | taste: 3.5 | feel: 3.5 | overall: 3.5

12 ounce bottle. No bottled-on or best-before date.

Poured from the bottle a clear peach. Light-to-moderate carbonation in the Duvel glass, but unnaturally small head and only a light film of insignificant lace. Smells grainy, slightly spicy, with a touch of alcohol in the nose. Tastes mostly grainy and fairly bland at first. Begins to develop some drying hops and spice as the beer warms. Finishes medium-dry, with notes of solvent-like alcohol. Lightly carbonated and relatively light in body.

Not the best strong Belgian-style ale. Brought down by average appearance and only slightly-above-average flavor. Could be an old six-pack since there was no dating on the bottles.

dgallina, Jul 14, 2005
Photo of UncleFlip
4.15/5  rDev +3%
look: 4 | smell: 4.5 | taste: 4 | feel: 4.5 | overall: 4

Pours a nice honey-orange. The bottle conditioning contributed to some haze, but my sloppy pour didn't help. :) Nice healthy creamy-white head, which held for a little while before disappearing.

Nice fresh aroma, with a spicy bottom, covered over by a smell that's all about canned pineapple (not unpleasantly so- I rather like this smell in this context). It's also got some banana tones in it.

The flavour has an intial spice, followed by a hit of banana and a hint of orange, then more spice. The end and aftertaste are kind of woody, with the alcohol rising a bit at the end. The spicy tonestend to stay on your tongue even when you're not drinking.

On the tongue, there's a medium fizz initially, which grows quickly. Underneath that, it has a nice medium body that gets just SLIGHTLY slimy at the end.

I like this one a good bit. It seemed to get more intense as it went on, making me think it may not be a good session beer. However, that could have to do with how I feel in the moment- and maybe at another time I might think differently.

Be well

UncleFlip, Jul 07, 2005
Photo of jamesclark
3.83/5  rDev -5%
look: 3.5 | smell: 4 | taste: 4 | feel: 3.5 | overall: 3.5

The beer is light orange, and very cloudy. The cream-colored head formed quickly, but disappeared just as quickly, and my beer is left with a light crown.

The smell is citrusy, with a malty sweetness; it is reminiscent of a witbier, though a bit darker.

The taste is tangy - a balance of malt and hops, with a significant fruity and citrusy flavor. There is a significant spiciness, and some sour sweetness. This beer has a subtle complexity to it - a woodiness, maybe. The finish is particularly spicy and dry, leaving a tingle in the mouth, along with a little hops and citrus. The alcohol is finally, but barely, noticeable.

The carbonation is on the high side, which provides that tingle at the finish, and throughout - making the beer feel somewhat dry. It also feels medium-bodied, and not at all syrupy.

A good beer, it hides the alcohol well. I would tend to want something to eat with this, because of the dryness and sourness, but this drink does well enough on its own.

jamesclark, Jul 07, 2005
Photo of ypsifly
4.13/5  rDev +2.5%
look: 4.5 | smell: 4 | taste: 4 | feel: 4 | overall: 4.5

12oz with no dates poured into a chalice.

Hazy amber orange with a white, one finger head that coats the glass and never really dies.

Smells of funky yeast, coriander, and some dry hops. Has a tart aroma.

Dry malts upfront when tasted. Then the spice kicks in paired with a lemon tartness. The finish is dry and spicy. Very well balanced with a somewhat light mouthfeel. Quite drinkable.

ypsifly, Jun 15, 2005
Photo of mmmbeer
4.3/5  rDev +6.7%
look: 4.5 | smell: 4 | taste: 4.5 | feel: 4.5 | overall: 4

12 oz., bottle conditioned - served slightly chilled in a Chimay chalice. It is a translucent amber/gold with a one finger head that is just a shade away from white and leaves slight lacing. Lots of phenols in the aroma - bananas, cloves, spiciness - and a touch of orange. The flavor is also heavy on the phenols along with some sweetness and yeast. Very malty with some hops in the aftertaste and there is an alcohol warmth. It is pretty thick and smooth. Delicious.

mmmbeer, May 13, 2005
Photo of TheJudge
3.85/5  rDev -4.5%
look: 4 | smell: 4 | taste: 4 | feel: 3.5 | overall: 3.5

A golden yellow, THICK looking ale with a firm white head that holds very well. Looks like a lemon/orange has been stuffed in the glass. That isn't as bad as it sounds. Smells lemony. Not too much, what I expected. Tastes thick and heavy, again no surprise. But not bad. It does take from the mouthfeel. And it is just too thick to drink more than one or two.

TheJudge, May 12, 2005
Pranqster from North Coast Brewing Co.
90 out of 100 based on 2,686 ratings.