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Matilda - Goose Island Beer Co.

Not Rated.

Displayed for educational use only; do not reuse.

3,832 Ratings

(view ratings)
Ratings: 3,832
Reviews: 1,148
rAvg: 4.03
pDev: 12.16%
Wants: 171
Gots: 536 | FT: 12
Brewed by:
Goose Island Beer Co. visit their website
Illinois, United States

Style | ABV
Belgian Strong Pale Ale |  7.00% ABV

Availability: Year-round

Notes/Commercial Description:
Golden sunrise color, baking spice aroma, fruity biscuity malt flavor, dry body.

Users have reported some infected bottles from these batches:

4/1/10 12oz
4/17/10 12oz
4/22/10 12oz
5/20/10 12oz
4/16/10 650mL
5/21/10 650mL

(Beer added by: BeerAdvocate on 06-04-2003)
Beer: Ratings & Reviews
Sort by:  Usefulness | Recent | High | Low | Top Raters | Read the Alström Bros Beer Reviews and Beer Ratings of Matilda Alström Bros
Ratings: 3,832 | Reviews: 1,148 | Display Reviews Only:
Photo of wolvie2
3.6/5  rDev -10.7%
look: 3.5 | smell: 4 | taste: 3.5 | feel: 3.5 | overall: 3.5

This beer is a go to Belgian, for those who are familiar with the type of beer as well as those who need to be introduced. Its taste what you would expect from a Belgian but also has its own unique tones. Delicious taste but leaves you feeling a little heavy. I would recommend having a bottle at the beginning of the night or on its own for a special occasion. Try if you get the chance!

wolvie2, Mar 31, 2011
Photo of ChugginOil
4.1/5  rDev +1.7%
look: 4 | smell: 4.5 | taste: 4 | feel: 4 | overall: 4

When poured, Matilda settles hazy orange, leaving less than a fingers worth of short lived white head. After the head dissipates, a tiny rim of bubbles forms around the edges. When swirled, loose lacing slides effortlessly down the glass.

The nose brings some fruit to the table, along with some Belgian funk and spice. Some clove is noticeable as well.

The taste is very crisp and tasty. Some Belgian spice along with an abundance of banana is dominant here. There is also a peppery undertone that is interesting and...Yum.

The mouthfeel is very smooth and enjoyable, containing a good amount of carbonation that makes each sip crisp and refreshing.

Overall, this brew is very well made and each sip leaves my mouth happy and refreshed all over.

ChugginOil, Mar 30, 2011
Photo of NODAK
3.98/5  rDev -1.2%
look: 3.5 | smell: 4.5 | taste: 4 | feel: 4 | overall: 3.5

Aroma is quite spicy, with loads of clove pairing with a good dosing of fruity esters. Very Belgian.

Pours a dark golden color, quite effervescent...very little head.

Starts somewhat sweet with the aforementioned fruit...but not quite as much as I'd have thought. Good clove presence here as well permeating through the body. On the finish, some Belgian yeast peeks through and a bit of a surprising tartness to complete it.

Not bad at all. Pretty good take on a Belgian style. It doesn't hold up to the top ones, but nobody would expect it to.

NODAK, Mar 30, 2011
Photo of ehammond1
3.9/5  rDev -3.2%
look: 3 | smell: 4 | taste: 4 | feel: 3.5 | overall: 4

On Tap

Churchill's Pub & Grille
San Marcos, CA

A hazy light orange with an off-white head that doesn't stick around for too long. Some lacing.

A fruity aroma, Belgian yeast, and some barnyard blanket. Inviting. Comforting.

Taste follows the nose. Some fruity sweetness, a bit of spicy and peppery Belgian yeast, some bitterness. Well balanced.

Appropriate medium mouthfeel. Fairly dry. Not quite as highly carbonated as I would have expected.

A delicious, well-rounded, balanced, highly drinkable BSPA.

ehammond1, Mar 29, 2011
Photo of chugalug06
3.73/5  rDev -7.4%
look: 4 | smell: 4 | taste: 3.5 | feel: 3.5 | overall: 4

A - Perfectly tangerine in color. Fluffy white head stands with pride, gently receding in to a topical of foam leaving behind spotty lacing

S - Mildly sour banana scent with cloves mild citrus

T - Slightly strong Belgian, mildly offensive with serious clove and yeast flavors that slightly deter from the enjoyment of a silky brew

M - Slightly over carbonated, very light and easy to hold. Makes your mouth feel overly "wet" due to complexion of frothy brew

D - Very drinkable, I'm anxious to see what happens once the brew warms up a bit, closer to room temperature. Three sips in, I can feel it warming my stomach already

Drank in a NB Globe glass... This is my first experience with Matilda and second with Goose Island. I would recommend Matilda to a friend. Very enjoyable brew, thank you Dave for the trade!

chugalug06, Mar 29, 2011
Photo of SassyBootblack
4.33/5  rDev +7.4%
look: 4 | smell: 4 | taste: 4.5 | feel: 4 | overall: 4.5

On tap at the Yardhouse in Desert Ridge (Scottsdale?). Served in a small goblet.

Appearance: Thin, lingering white head with some lacing. Beer color was a deep orange, so I mistook this for a tripel, but a Belgian strong pale ale is just as well.

Smell: Wonderful Belgian fruit.

Taste: That Belgian fruit again with a heavy emphasis on pear. Probably the "pear"-iest beer I've had in memory.

Mouthfeel: Appropriately light.

Light and dangerous like a good Belgian strong should be. The big pear flavors were unexpected and delightful.

SassyBootblack, Mar 28, 2011
Photo of BB1313
4.1/5  rDev +1.7%
look: 4.5 | smell: 4.5 | taste: 4 | feel: 4.5 | overall: 4

2011 vintage. Bottled on 1/27/11. 12oz bottle poured into a snifter. Pours a pretty orange w/ a great white head and very nice lacing. Very good looking brew! I'm really digging the aromas as well. I'm picking up lots of candied sugars, yeast, cherries, apples, pears. All of that can be found in the flavors as well; slightly malty and sweet. Everything seems to be on point. It reminds me of a tripel. The mouthfeel is great, almost perfect. It's extremely smooth and creamy w/ little carbonation.. very enjoyable. I'm really liking this one! It's very crisp, clean, and refreshing and it's easy to drink.

Matilda is highly enjoyable.. everything is hitting on all cylinders.. recommended!

BB1313, Mar 25, 2011
Photo of GeezLynn
3.43/5  rDev -14.9%
look: 3 | smell: 3.5 | taste: 3.5 | feel: 3 | overall: 3.5

Bottled on 04/22/09

A: Cloudy orange/brown with a faint white collar and poor retention.

S: Fruity yeast - apple and pear, a little musty funk and sweet malts.

T: Sweet and heavy on the yeast. As in the smell, apple/pear, honey, golden and caramel malts along with a pronounced, slightly sour wild yeast flavor.

M: Medium-bodied with light carbonation. Pretty lifeless, especially for the style.

This bottle definitely has more funk than I remember the last time I had this beer (3+ years). Though the label says the beer will continue to develop over 5 years, I don't think the time improved things. Overall, it was just too sweet and unbalanced, not to mention somewhat flat. May need to try a fresh bottle again.

GeezLynn, Mar 25, 2011
Photo of NWer
4.28/5  rDev +6.2%
look: 4.5 | smell: 4.5 | taste: 4 | feel: 4.5 | overall: 4.5

Bottled on date: 9/30/10
Poured amber in my Chimay chalice. Nice head retention. Some lace. Nice sweet, yet bold flavors that compliment the style very well. Very pleasant. More of a drinker than a sipper. Smooth and easy to drink. Bought one bottle to try it out but will definitely grab more. Compares favorably with Damnation in my opinion.

NWer, Mar 25, 2011
Photo of Kelly88
3.65/5  rDev -9.4%
look: 4.5 | smell: 4 | taste: 3.5 | feel: 3.5 | overall: 3.5

Had on tap at the cock and bull in mainstrausse.

A- dark copper orange with a snow white head That recedes into a soapy ring. Port holes of lace appear on my tulip. The color and overall appearance remind me of a sweet ice tea.

S- rum. Burnt sugar on top of raisins. Slight hint of fruity yeast doing it with sweet malts. No hops at all.

T- pretty much follows the nose without alot of the yeast. Slight tart cherry and a nip of alcohol on the swallow. I also detect a little apple vinegar which is weird, pretty tasty but some weird flavor direction.

M- I would say light to medium with minimal sparkling carbonation. Enjoyable feel that leaves room for improvement, I would like to see more coating or flavor delivery.

Overall a good beer that was enjoyable. Not usually a Belgian drinker but this was a good change up. Alcohol was there a bit which detracted from the overall Belgian spiciness and fruit forward appeal. I would drink it again, maybe cellar some

Kelly88, Mar 24, 2011
Photo of Blanco
4/5  rDev -0.7%
look: 4 | smell: 4 | taste: 4 | feel: 4 | overall: 4

pours an orange color with smallish white head. slightly cloudy from several small "floaties" in it. The beer wasn't really shaken so this seem strange. Beer smells of belgian spice, with strong "Brett" aroma. taste is pleasant, with a fruitiness along with the brett. the fruit is of the citrus variety. a bit tart. Nice mouthfeel. Overall, I'm pretty impressed with this one. I was not expecting the Brett in this but am pleasantly surprised. I'm assuming this was intended and not of the "infected" batches noted above since this is dated 10/08/10.

Blanco, Mar 19, 2011
Photo of tchenery
4.28/5  rDev +6.2%
look: 4 | smell: 4 | taste: 4.5 | feel: 4.5 | overall: 4

Pours a bright orange color with a thin head. I expected to see more head on this one.

Smells as it should, very tart on the nose with slight fruit coming through. The brett pretty much takes over.

Spicy, fruity, tart. It doesn't have the sour I was expecting. It's more peppery, with hints of cinnamon. Very refreshing.

Mouthfeel is light and spritzy, yet full bodied. Very well balanced.

Completely drinkable. One of the best beers I've had recently.

Bottled 10/2010.

tchenery, Mar 14, 2011
Photo of Brunite
4.33/5  rDev +7.4%
look: 4 | smell: 4.5 | taste: 4.5 | feel: 4 | overall: 4

A - Medium-to-deep amber in color. Off white head. Decent carbonation.

S - The Belgian yeast really comes across here.Fruity and spicy notes up front. And wow...nice Brett. This is one of the most funky smelling beers I have had. You really DO get that wet horse blanket smell. Very nice job.

T - Fruity...clove...white pepper....citrus...lots going on. In addition...you get that nice funkiness. Malt is there but secondary to the yeasts.

M - Relatively thin body. Crisp. Some sweetness...not so dry.

D - A decent beer here. I like this one. A great job IMHO of duplicating a Belgian. Orval is supposed to be the motivation behind this beer. I like this one better. Not as dry.I'll have to stock this as cellar a few.

Brunite, Mar 14, 2011
Photo of jar2574
5/5  rDev +24.1%
look: 5 | smell: 5 | taste: 5 | feel: 5 | overall: 5

Bottled on 12/20/10. This was an exceptional experience; there is no other beer that I'd rather have right now.

The beer poured a bronze color and was tough to see through unless you held it up to light. A big white head dissolves slowly, leaving very good lacing on the sides.

It smells tremendous. Peaches, hops, dirt, earthiness, manure, (yes, manure), and grapefruit. Unique, excellent.

It's a very complex tasting beer and perfectly balanced. Hops, fruitiness, peaches, a little grassy, a little honey sweetness in the aftertaste. Neither the malts nor the hops predominate. Instead, they complement each other.

The sweetness in the aftertaste reminded me of Hopslam, which I had recently and loved. But I actually prefer Matilda because I like balanced beers a little more than hop-dominated beers.

It feels the way a beer should, with the right smoothness, creaminess and density.

I could drink this all day. They serve it in heaven.

jar2574, Mar 13, 2011
Photo of plfahey
4.22/5  rDev +4.7%
look: 4 | smell: 4 | taste: 4.5 | feel: 4 | overall: 4

22 oz. bottle poured into a tulip glass (Bottled october 23rd, 2009, drank on 3/12/11).

Appearance-Amber gold, with moderately good clarity. Moderate off white head with a fine bead and decent retention.

Aroma-Nice mix of cider, cloves, cinnamon, and ginger spice. Very very light brett character with a slight barnyard must (I would have expected it to be higher a year and a half out, but no big deal). Reminds me of mulled cider.

Flavor-Huge yeast character-bread dough, cinnamon and cloves, a slight cider note, and a dry, champagne like character in the finish. Malt has a rich caramel flavor. Slight brett character-horsey and barnyardy.

Mouthfeel-Medium body, moderately carbonation. Smooth and elegant.

This beer is awesome. I tried aging this beer out about a year and a half, and I think I like it better fresh, but it's still quite good. At this point, its showing a lot of yeast character, with tons of phenolic spicy notes, though I expected more brett to evolve with time. Very very good.

plfahey, Mar 13, 2011
Photo of peensteen
4.33/5  rDev +7.4%
look: 4 | smell: 4 | taste: 4.5 | feel: 4 | overall: 4.5

Pours a delightful orange/amber colour, good white head, some lacing left on the glass. Smell has a nice Brett funk, good hop presence, big yeasty presence shows up as well. Taste has a funky brett presence, light sourness, fruity, green fruit, mildly hoppy, a nice malt brings everything together well. Good mouthfeel, creamy, nice weight, carbonation is just how I like it for a strong belgian style. Drinks very well, would welcome this anytime, solid stuff from Goose Island again.

peensteen, Mar 09, 2011
Photo of Rayek
3.93/5  rDev -2.5%
look: 3.5 | smell: 4 | taste: 4 | feel: 3.5 | overall: 4

Review number 1,000. Who'd a thought it? Poured into my favorite tulip.

A: Slightly hazy apricot with light carbonation. A small, yet dense cream tinted cap falls fairly quickly to a thick sheet of foam. Leaves bits of lace.

S: Fairly light in the nose. Clove and coriander spice dominate. A pear sweetness is in back. Lemon and a slight barnyard funk completes the picture.

T: Like the nose, the flavor is rather light. Straw like malts start out. There is a light pear sweetness behind them. Bitterness is well balanced and spicy. The beer finishes tart and dry, with a light lingering spice.

M: The body is quite light and doesn't have quite the vigor I expect from this style.

D: This is a good BSPA that is a couple of flavor notches away from being great. Overall, a solid choice for review 1,000.

Rayek, Mar 08, 2011
Photo of deebo
4.22/5  rDev +4.7%
look: 4 | smell: 4 | taste: 4.5 | feel: 4 | overall: 4

A- Dark orange color that has a cloudy appearance with a nice white head

S- Spicy (clove like) and yeasty are the dominating aromas. Nice clean hop aroma.

T- Nice yeasty aftertaste with plenty of esters. Malt and hops are well balanced, making this a very enjoyable beer. Warming alcohol finish.

M- Smooth-medium bodied

D- Easy to sip or gulp, would like to have another.

Overall probably my favorite American version of this style.

deebo, Mar 05, 2011
Photo of paintedwall
3.95/5  rDev -2%
look: 4 | smell: 3.5 | taste: 4 | feel: 3.5 | overall: 4.5

Bottled 11/16/09: Poured from a bomber into a snifter.

Appearance: Very orange/amber, clear and bubbly. Very nice color. Pours with a decent head, little to no head retention, lacing up the glass. A very pretty beer to look at.

Smell: The smell is fruity-sweet verging on wild-yeast sour. Honestly, the smell betrays the taste a bit. A good whiff will prepare you for something much sweeter than this beer.

Taste: Very nuanced, but also very subtle. Like a nice, dry champagne, the sweetness is subdued. You get some good fruity flavors, nothing really bitter, just very smooth. Extremely drinkable.

Mouthfeel: Mid-level carbonation, tingly. Overall pleasant.

Drinkability: One could drink a sixer of these without getting sick of it, easily. I definitely like this beer, especially with a little bit of age on it. A good one to pick up regularly at the bar.

paintedwall, Mar 01, 2011
Photo of sophisticated
3.78/5  rDev -6.2%
look: 3.5 | smell: 3.5 | taste: 4 | feel: 4 | overall: 3.5

Matilda is a Belgian-style Pale Ale with 7% alcohol. This poured a darker orange, still cloudy, with a small fizzy white head. Nose was somewhat subtle, but sweet.

The taste started bitter, then citrus and Belgian yeast stood out. A little floral, overall this felt "muted" in both taste and smell. Aftertaste funky.

The body was medium, soft, and light. I've had other Belgian Pale Ales that I've enjoyed a little more than this. It was tasty and pleasant, but I think I like stronger flavors.

sophisticated, Feb 27, 2011
Photo of Frothboss
3.8/5  rDev -5.7%
look: 4 | smell: 3 | taste: 4 | feel: 4 | overall: 4

Pours a golden orange with a thin frothy head that thins out quickly. Smells sweet and sour with spicy undernotes. Tastes sweet up front and sour in the middle, nice and dry. Very balanced tastes, even and smooth. Mouthfeel is full with good carbonation, not to much bubbles. Kind of bready. Its good, i like this beer. I will defiflnitely buy another bottle and will try and hang on to it a little longer before i drink it. Yummy full and delicious.

Frothboss, Feb 26, 2011
Photo of leedorham
4.03/5  rDev 0%
look: 3.5 | smell: 4.5 | taste: 4 | feel: 3.5 | overall: 4

A - Pours orange with an off white head that dissipates quickly. The foam ring does stick around and gives a bit of lacing.

S - Very nice sweet & spicy with an earthy background. Some tannins in the character of the nose. This is a complex aroma and very pleasing. Makes me eager to take the first sip.

T - Spices dominate. There I would call it clove, licorice, and sage. Quite dry. Doesn't seem to have the sweetness I expected from the nose. There is a little leathery funk lingering in the background.

M - A little bit chalky. Carbonation is medium high to high.

D - Quite drinkable and enjoyable. Paired this with a steak salad with spinach.

leedorham, Feb 25, 2011
Photo of ElijahCSkuggs
3.53/5  rDev -12.4%
look: 3 | smell: 3.5 | taste: 3.5 | feel: 4 | overall: 3.5

Matilda. I'm drinking this beaut in honor of that lil stick, Natalie Portman. Why? Because of Leon. Who? The Professional? Still don't follow? Too bad.

I love that film, and her performance in it, but this Matilda is an altogether different entity. It's Belgian for cripes sake! So my question is, does this Matilda perform well, or does it flounder about like that witch movie with Devito?

An orangey-amber hue that was unexpected. What else was surprising was the lackluster head - maybe one finger - which is now a skimming layer of miniscule bubbles. Okay lace.

Rather pleasant smelling - very floral, with malt notes, spice, not much fruit for me. Nice, but forgettable and very been there done that.

Like her lil sister, Smelly, this one is pleasant and easier to notice the fruit notes. But what the hell....pickles? I literally taste pickles. Pickled beer? Ok.

Besides having the taste of pickles stuck on my palette, it's a rather smooth slurp; medium body, creamy and....pleasant.

This Matilda couldn't hold a candle to Portman's. This belgian strong pale ale, is probably the weakest I've had yet. I like mine a bit more on the Duvel side - with a bite. This beer doesn't look like a strong, or even taste like a strong.

Also, 10 bucks Portman wins for Black Swan. DUR!!!

ElijahCSkuggs, Feb 25, 2011
Photo of krisandajt
2.73/5  rDev -32.3%
look: 4 | smell: 2.5 | taste: 2.5 | feel: 4 | overall: 2.5

2009 bottle, poured into my DFH Chalice...

Appearance: A slightly opaque ruby, mahogany color with a good inch of white, foamy head. Retention is decent, and the lacing is soapy and runny with no real schtick to it.

Smell: Some vinegar, funk, and an off sort of pickled beets smell. It took me a few minutes to lock it down, but pickled beets is what jumps to mind. Not too sure what to think about it.

Taste: Well, that pickled taste certainly carries through. Sure, it's got some funk, and there's a slight fruity quality, but I'll be damned if I can't get past that pickled taste. Not that appealing, really.

Mouthfeel: Not bad here, medium body with good carbonation.

Drinkability: As the beer warms, the funk develops a bit more and detracts from the pickled flavor, but honestly I don't really find this brew that appealing. I really don't think I'll be coming back to this one.

krisandajt, Feb 23, 2011
Photo of Gunslinger711
4.85/5  rDev +20.3%
look: 4 | smell: 5 | taste: 5 | feel: 4 | overall: 5

On tap at GI - Clybourn

Tasting notes from 2-15-11

Served in a sample glass.

A - Matilda pours a light hazy amber color. Sparse head, almost no lacing.

S - The smell is incredible, you have a variety of scents: malt, sweet honey, something floral in the mix...

M - Light but a little sticky mouthfeel

T - All of the scents transfer to taste along with a gentle Belgian wheat finish.

Excellent example of a strong pale ale, I would definitely drink this again.

Gunslinger711, Feb 23, 2011
Matilda from Goose Island Beer Co.
90 out of 100 based on 3,832 ratings.