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Grand Cru - North Coast Brewing Co.

Not Rated.
Grand CruGrand Cru

Displayed for educational use only; do not reuse.

363 Ratings
no score

(send 'em beer!)
Ratings: 363
Reviews: 137
rAvg: 3.63
pDev: 18.18%
Wants: 12
Gots: 70 | FT: 2
Brewed by:
North Coast Brewing Co. visit their website
California, United States

Style | ABV
Belgian Strong Pale Ale |  12.90% ABV

Availability: Limited (brewed once)

Notes/Commercial Description:
No notes at this time.

(Beer added by: nbree00 on 07-22-2011)
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Ratings: 363 | Reviews: 137 | Display Reviews Only:
Photo of n2pux


3.5/5  rDev -3.6%

01-06-2012 02:36:08 | More by n2pux
Photo of Evil_Pidde


3.75/5  rDev +3.3%
look: 3 | smell: 3.5 | taste: 4 | feel: 4 | overall: 3.5

There's something very exciting with a beer that comes in a large bottle with steel cage and natural cork...

A: Pours slightly hazy orange with a tall white head that sizzels into some lacings.

S: Belgian yeast (perhaps even some brett) and some spices, sourness and oak. Green apples and some citric notes. The high ABV is well hidden.

T: Sweetness. The sourness reminds me of that in a Flanders Red Ale. Some yeast (but NO brett). Vanilla and lots of fruit and berries. Apples and some faint banana (wheat?).

M: Sour medium full body, kind of strong carbonation for this style. Aftertaste is rather long for the style and holds a sweet dry sourness. The alcohol is very "shy"...

O: A nice try by North Coast, but not near the best Belgians. If you're curious - give it a try, but if you consider the price; avoid - this was way too expencive.

Serving type: bottle

01-04-2012 18:09:19 | More by Evil_Pidde
Photo of AleWatcher


3/5  rDev -17.4%

01-04-2012 02:21:04 | More by AleWatcher
Photo of drummermattie02


2/5  rDev -44.9%

01-03-2012 00:54:36 | More by drummermattie02
Photo of OWSLEY069


3.1/5  rDev -14.6%
look: 4 | smell: 3 | taste: 3 | feel: 3.5 | overall: 3

Pours a clean yellow to orange-ish color with a white head. In the aroma, buttery, a bit syrupy, and a dry alcohol smell. In the taste, alcohol, a light licorice taste, dry and somewhat buttery. Quite smooth and medium bodied mouthfeel, with a small dry alcohol and small licorice like aftertaste. Quite big and buttery, I wish I would have aged this for a year or three.

Serving type: bottle

12-31-2011 16:51:41 | More by OWSLEY069
Photo of gigaknight


4.38/5  rDev +20.7%
look: 4 | smell: 4 | taste: 4.5 | feel: 4.5 | overall: 4.5

A- Pours radiant gold with champagne-like carbonation, culminating in a finger of crisp white head which dissipates quickly. Little lacing is seen remaining on the glass. Plenty of good nucleation from the bottom of the chalice.

S- Light phenols and some tart Belgian yeast make up the bulk of the bouquet, supplemented by some toasted oak and vanilla sweetness. Some alcohol is also present.

T- Somewhat tinny malt sweetness opens the palate, followed by tart white wine grapes, ending with a very pleasant combination of farmhouse funk, clove, and musky agave sweetness. Bourbon flavors are hardly present, lending more toasted oak and vanilla notes as opposed to sour mash. Perhaps this is simply because the agave nectar possesses a similar character and thus masks some of the typical musk of bourbon. However, the warmth of the bourbon is noticed yet not unwelcome. There is no real "bite" to speak of, but a light alcoholic heat flashes in the back of the palate, highlighting the more carmelized notes of the barrel.

M- I found this to have just the right amount of carbonation, fizzy enough keep the alcohol and residual sugar from becoming cloying, though not at all lacking in substance. The sticky sweetness of the agave adds weight to the mouthfeel, and it seems that the oak helps to dry out the finish before the robust flavors linger for too long.

O- I got this beer for $3.99 a bottle on account of a pricing error, but I think I'd still gladly pay the $15.99 it was intended to cost. A very interesting beer from North Coast, and a superb counterpoint for the BA Old Rasputin which was equally graceful and bold.

Serving type: bottle

12-31-2011 05:21:45 | More by gigaknight
Photo of rand


3.85/5  rDev +6.1%
look: 4 | smell: 3.5 | taste: 4 | feel: 3.5 | overall: 4

From tap to tulip glass

A: Golden-yellow with an nice frothy, 2-inch head. Looks indistinguishable from a DIPA.

S: Boozy bouquet, strong. Notes of over-ripened fruit, plums, and candied malts. The combination almost reminds of Dole Banana-Pineapple juice, although I can't pick up any distinct pineapple or banana. Weird but interesting.

T: Notes of sweet ripened fruit roll in first, joined by strong notes of biting alcohol. I'm still getting that tropical-banana thing, but it's rolled up with a bunch of other flavors. A smattering of hoppy earthiness keeps the profile from tasting actually like juice, because it's close otherwise. Finishes sweet and boozy.

M: Medium to heavy bodied, but given all that's going on in this brew its a lot lighter in complexion than you'd think. Ample carbonation to wash the residue.

One of the more unique brews I've had. I wouldn't exactly call it drinkable, but compelling and I've just blown a half an hour trying to parse the flavors.

Serving type: on-tap

12-30-2011 05:21:02 | More by rand
Photo of gregy55902


3.28/5  rDev -9.6%
look: 4.5 | smell: 3 | taste: 3 | feel: 4 | overall: 3.5

2011 vintage poured into an oversized snifter.

A - Pours a nice, vibrant dark mango color. Minimal head which recedes quickly leaving bubbles around the rim of the glass.

S - This smell is not like any other beer, and I have to suspect the agave nectar made it smell like this. Bread, belgian yeast, funky earthen notes, and alcohol.

T - Sour dark fruits (almost cloying), a bit of bourbon, alcohol is present but not overpowering.

M - Medium bodied, good for a belgian style beer.

O - I had no idea what to expect with this one (or even what the style was, really). I prefer other styles (imperial stout/IPA) more, but this beer is ok and a good change of pace. Share this with friends because its a chore to drink the whole bottle. Not something I will seek out again but I'm glad to have tried it. I can't really recommend this to the average citizen, something just seems off and it's not a beer that I would call very enjoyable.

Serving type: bottle

12-29-2011 07:11:29 | More by gregy55902
Photo of peacebone116


4.03/5  rDev +11%
look: 4.5 | smell: 4 | taste: 4 | feel: 4 | overall: 4

Poured the 2011 vintage from 500-mL bottle into a snifter glass on 8-20-11.

A: Light, bright gold. Little head with wisps of lace at the sides and swirling in the middle. There is visible carbonation throughout.

N: Crisp belgian tartness mingles with a bready butterscotch flavor and a slight hint of booze.

T/M: Taste that follows the nose with defined apple tartness. A bit of oak flavor on the finish with a nice warming sensation. Not much of a bourbon flavor. Light carbonation but this seems appropriate for the style, with a light to medium body.

Overall, this is a very nice beer. Good flavors for a barrel-aged quad-style.

Serving type: bottle

12-28-2011 05:08:53 | More by peacebone116
Photo of HOPPYKC


3.4/5  rDev -6.3%
look: 4 | smell: 4.5 | taste: 3 | feel: 3.5 | overall: 3

No bottling date available on the bottle. Pours similar to apple juice. Crystal clear with a slight yellow hue to it. BAM Witt the citrus and fruit straight to the dome. Thiah has amazing finish and aroma, rivals some of the best I've had for grand cru. I will say this was sour to the taste. I've had much more well rounded brews that went down and tasted much better. Nice drink ability. Nice lacing. Expected a little more. Overall north coast laid down a good brew.

Serving type: bottle

12-27-2011 07:32:40 | More by HOPPYKC
Photo of bhir


3.25/5  rDev -10.5%

12-27-2011 03:20:36 | More by bhir
Photo of gbbass16


3/5  rDev -17.4%

12-24-2011 17:44:54 | More by gbbass16
Photo of kbutler1


2.73/5  rDev -24.8%
look: 4 | smell: 2.5 | taste: 2.5 | feel: 4 | overall: 2.5

Bottle. C&C. Cork is a little tough to get out but finally gives way. Not sure why but I imagined this to be a darker color as it pours a clear apple juice golden color with a lively white head that settles to coaster in the glass. Fruity aroma mixed with some barrel notes. I also get a funky cheese note. Medium mouthfeel. Sweet fruit start with a boozy note. The agave throws this off for me I think. Overall, I’m not a huge fan of this.

Serving type: bottle

12-22-2011 23:18:00 | More by kbutler1
Photo of jayhawk73


3.35/5  rDev -7.7%
look: 3.5 | smell: 3 | taste: 3.5 | feel: 3 | overall: 3.5

Pours a medium gold color w/ a thin off white head. Below average lacing on my CBS snifter. Completely clear to look through- strange for the color and strength. The smell is a little weird too... apricot, pear, spices, bourbon? It's very sweet, and very unique. I'm not crazy about the nose, though. The taste is like white wine, fruit juice and a shot of bourbon all mixed into one. Definitely on the light side taste-wise for the style. I see now that agave is listed on the bottle, and I definitely get some of that too. Feel is very light, syrupy, highly carbonated, with a bite in the aftertaste. Overall, this is an interesting beer that definitely needs a couple years on it. Very unique. I don't think I will seek this out again, but it's worth checking out. Cheers.

Serving type: bottle

12-22-2011 18:02:03 | More by jayhawk73
Photo of ajfrantz

North Carolina

4/5  rDev +10.2%

12-20-2011 02:36:34 | More by ajfrantz
Photo of champ103


2.88/5  rDev -20.7%
look: 2.5 | smell: 3 | taste: 3 | feel: 3 | overall: 2.5

On tap at Petrol Station in Houston, TX

A: Pours a clear, but dull orange color. A mall bubbly white head forms with pour retention. The foam recedes to nothing in a second with light lace.
S: Apple juice up front. Some sweet malt, but that is about it.
T: Again, a big apple juice/cider flavor. Though without the great crisp, almost tart bite that I would expect with such a beer. Some sweet malt and hot alcohol. Overall, just blah.
M/D: A medium body and low carbonation. This needs to me much cleaner, and dryer. Plenty of hot alcohol makes this a very slow sipper. One I don't really care to finish.

Not much to say besides over priced, average at best, and disappointing coming from one of my favorite breweries. Not something I would recommend.

Serving type: on-tap

12-20-2011 01:05:42 | More by champ103
Photo of TrickkyGangsta


4.5/5  rDev +24%

12-18-2011 23:13:14 | More by TrickkyGangsta
Photo of pisomojado8


4.5/5  rDev +24%

12-18-2011 20:58:19 | More by pisomojado8
Photo of HopStoopid120


4/5  rDev +10.2%

12-16-2011 22:32:50 | More by HopStoopid120
Photo of beerbiatchMD


4/5  rDev +10.2%
look: 4 | smell: 4 | taste: 4 | feel: 4 | overall: 4

500 mL bottle into a wine glass.

A: Golden orange in color with about a half finger of bright white head. Good lacing, good retention.

S: There is a yeasty floral smell that predominates, I also feel I get a root beer-like aroma. Lots of esters and alcohols.

T: Citrusy with some Belgian spice, certainly a fair amount of alcohol on the palate.

M: Dry, crisp, pretty boozy--as expected. Good amount of carbonation.

O: Definitely a good Belgian-style Gran Cru. I think it would have been ideal sharing this bottle, however, as I'll probably be drunk by the end. Cheers!

Serving type: bottle

12-14-2011 00:25:23 | More by beerbiatchMD
Photo of Beerandraiderfan


2.25/5  rDev -38%
look: 3 | smell: 2.5 | taste: 2 | feel: 2 | overall: 2.5

Didn't expect this beer to come out looking like Coors, but it had a dark golden color. Just don't see that too often when something is labeled as bourbon barrel aged, but hey, something new. Aroma was all over the place. Mostly it was just the smell of alcohol. Throw in some roundabout fruit and wood, and there it is.

Taste, wow, even bigger disappointment. More alcohol heat, no distinguishable direction, seems like a grand cru where everything, including the kitchen sink is dumped together, slap it in a spirits barrel and a few months later, you have a beer that retailers can ask $20 a pop for. The bourbon aspect is paltry compared to the alcohol heat and belgian steroid yeast. Where the agave was, I have no idea. It was like a mix of raisin and pear, with wet oak, and rubbing alcohol with a boilermaker shot of whiskey added for 'bad' measure.

North Coast frequently gets it right with their affordable beers. Their barrel Rasputin was never in my opinion better than the regular, and this stuff is just downright disappointing on a whole nuther level.

Avoid unless the price comes down to like, $1 a bottle.

Serving type: on-tap

12-14-2011 00:16:13 | More by Beerandraiderfan
Photo of Marti403


2/5  rDev -44.9%

12-13-2011 05:22:43 | More by Marti403
Photo of joefc


4/5  rDev +10.2%

12-13-2011 00:11:22 | More by joefc
Photo of BrewCrew2010


4/5  rDev +10.2%

12-09-2011 21:33:34 | More by BrewCrew2010
Photo of dansmcd


3.4/5  rDev -6.3%
look: 4 | smell: 4 | taste: 3 | feel: 3.5 | overall: 3.5

A - A clear, pale golden colour under two fingers of fluffy white head, and then long strands of lacing.

S - Sweet pears, yeast, champagne, honey.

T - Sweet pear and peach, slightly acidic and quite boozy as you'd expect at 12.9%.

M - Medium bodied and sweet.

O - At first, quite an interesting beer, but after half a glass its more than a touch too sweet and sugary.

Serving type: on-tap

12-09-2011 08:19:30 | More by dansmcd
Grand Cru from North Coast Brewing Co.
82 out of 100 based on 363 ratings.