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Genziana - Birra Del Borgo

Not Rated.
GenzianaGenziana

Displayed for educational use only; do not reuse.
BA SCORE
86
very good

44 Ratings
THE BROS
-
no score

(send 'em beer!)
Ratings: 44
Reviews: 29
rAvg: 3.83
pDev: 11.49%
Wants: 6
Gots: 2 | FT: 1
Brewed by:
Birra Del Borgo visit their website
Italy

Style | ABV
Herbed / Spiced Beer |  6.20% ABV

Availability: Rotating

Notes/Commercial Description:
No notes at this time.

(Beer added by: paulthebeerguru on 04-20-2008)
Beer: Ratings & Reviews
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Ratings: 44 | Reviews: 29 | Display Reviews Only:
Photo of ryandurka
5/5  rDev +30.5%
look: 5 | smell: 5 | taste: 5 | feel: 5 | overall: 5

a light fruit refreshing taste perfect for refreshing yourself and not getting wasted. would be great during a summer time day. the taste is super light and fruity, the color is light and the bottle/packaging is cool looking. i would recommend this beer big time, if you can find it.

ryandurka, Sep 29, 2008
Photo of NeroFiddled
4.5/5  rDev +17.5%
look: 4.5 | smell: 4.5 | taste: 4.5 | feel: 4.5 | overall: 4.5

From a small, interesting bottle (a 12.7 fluid ounce green glass Champagne bottle) that's capped with a plastic liner and then covered with a green plastic capsule.

Genziana, or gentiana, in case you weren't aware, is a flowering plant that is noted for its healing properties (by Pliny the Elder, nonetheless); and is used in "bitters" and herbal liquors.

It pours a fairly clear golden body until the yeast is roused, and then it takes on a bit more of an orange cast as it becomes a bit hazy. The creamy bright-white head holds remarkably well, and it leaves some very interesting streaks of lace that seem to throw themselves up into the air about the glass.

The aroma is grassy and herbal with a floral side, and a bit of citrus, kind of like lemon grass. There's also a hint of woodiness that reminds me of very soft cedar; and perhaps a drizzle of honey and some basement mustiness as well. A hint of yeasty chalkiness is present to boot. It's intriguing, but not necessarily enticing, although the thread of tartness and mustiness catches my attention.

The flavor follows suit, and it opens quite a bit as it warms. In fact, I find it so different from start to finish that for this beer I'd suggest opening it and nipping at it cold before giving it a few moments to warm up. The floral character of the gentian really comes out, and the herbal side softens. The grassiness remains, as does the hint of lemon, along with the soft woody spiciness. Which brings me to the finish, which is surprisingly dry and quick. There's a little dollop of lemon-drop and honey right off, and then what's left behind is a touch cedary, spicy, floral, and grassy - but it's not really bold at all, and it simply slips quietly away. Somewhere across the middle there's a mild slice of tartness (and in a way that's kind of needed for balance - along with the herbal character - as the bitterness is kept at a minimum), and that really rounds it out and pulls it into focus at the same time before finishing.

Impressive. It's a really interesting and complex beer, and yet it appears almost simple, and very drinkable as well. It reminds me in many ways of a Sauvignon Blanc from New Zealand (with much less grapefruit - well, no grapefruit), or even a vinho verde, and I think white wine drinkers would really enjoy this. Worth trying! Probably worth seeking out!

NeroFiddled, Apr 25, 2009
Photo of mrfrancis
4.5/5  rDev +17.5%

mrfrancis, Jun 19, 2013
Photo of timtim
4.5/5  rDev +17.5%
look: 4.5 | smell: 4.5 | taste: 4.5 | feel: 4.5 | overall: 4.5

Saison spiced with gentian. Cool. Hazy, burnt white gold with a white head that holds very well and leaves pretty lace. Nose is floral, fruity, (tangerine, peach, raspberry) slightly musty and maybe a touch woody (cedary? comes out a lot as it warms. really nice touch whatever it is). Taste is delivered on a soft coton candy body, and it's well balanced, slightly sweet and even a bit minerally like a white wine. Notes of pepper and ginger pop up too as well as a touch of bitter lemon coming through in the finish, which is long and luscious. this is an extremely complex, yet refreshing beer that goes down way too easy.

timtim, Aug 05, 2010
Photo of BeachRez
4.38/5  rDev +14.4%
look: 4 | smell: 4 | taste: 4.5 | feel: 4.5 | overall: 4.5

Purchased from Hi-Times - $9.00 for 12.7 oz

I had never heard of this before and thought it would be interesting to try.

Poured a honey-golden yellow. Really nice head that held. There is so much floating in this, looks like a combo of yeast and bubbles, that it gave the appearance of a candle. Almost fake.

The taste is very subtle with mellow hop and nice floral taste. Not much malt. Really balanced though and smooth.

Very easy to drink. I think the price is a little high for an everyday, but something I would drink again.

BeachRez, Sep 18, 2009
Photo of bspain5
4.25/5  rDev +11%

bspain5, Jun 08, 2012
Photo of Cylinsier
4.23/5  rDev +10.4%
look: 4 | smell: 4 | taste: 4.5 | feel: 4 | overall: 4

12+ oz.

Pours a medium brownish amber, hazy, with an off-white head.

Smells floral sweetness and some herbal notes, kind of saison-like with grassy malt elements.

Tastes of mildly sweet malts with some grassy elements, some honey sweetness, and a herbal touch like oregano.

Medium to full body with soft carbonation.

A nice ale, something like a Belgian pale ale, and very enjoyable. Good flavor and good body for a lower abv. I would love to have this again.

Cylinsier, Oct 22, 2012
Photo of corby112
4.13/5  rDev +7.8%
look: 4 | smell: 3.5 | taste: 4.5 | feel: 4 | overall: 4

Pours a cloudy golden-orange color with a huge foamy off-white head. Aroma consists of citrus peel, grapefruit and flowers. There is a nice malty balance to the citrus peel/ fruit presence. Very quaffable and sweet with a smooth, hoppy floral finish.

corby112, Dec 03, 2008
Photo of Halcyondays
4.13/5  rDev +7.8%
look: 4 | smell: 3.5 | taste: 4.5 | feel: 4 | overall: 4

12.7 oz. bottle,

A: Pours a cloudy amber with a full white head. Good, full covering lace. Bunch of floaties, but that partially my fault.

S: IPA like, a lot of peach, tangerine and wood. Citrusy. Herbal notes.

T: Lots of citrus, orange fruity hop character. Some strong cedar like spicy hops on the back end. Malt is very timid, offering some sourdough bread sweetness at times, but allowing the hops and the gentian take over.

M: Smooth, creamy with a nice grassy, resiny aftertaste.

D: This is a wonderful little beer. It is definitely overpriced at $9.99 for the little bottle, but I was intrigued and in the end am glad I bought it. Well made and tasty.

Halcyondays, Dec 28, 2009
Photo of KickbacksSteve
4.1/5  rDev +7%
look: 4 | smell: 4 | taste: 4 | feel: 4 | overall: 4.5

On tap at Kickbacks in Jax, poured into a Unibroue tulip. One inch, thin white head floats on a golden body. Aroma is earthy and funky with hints of Belgian saison yeast and maybe I can pick up on the gentian notes. Taste is much like a belgian saison with plenty of earthy notes but with a softness to the sour that should make this more palatable to American saison drinkers or to the average American palate without diving head-first into some Belgian-style farmhouse funk. Very interesting Italian offering from a pretty cool Italian micro.

KickbacksSteve, Feb 23, 2010
Photo of aasher
4.05/5  rDev +5.7%
look: 4 | smell: 4.5 | taste: 4 | feel: 3.5 | overall: 4

This was a 375ml bottle, shared with two fellow BAs. It poured a light bodied bright orange with a light white head which laced the glass. The aromas and flavors were a mix of a boatload of citrus fruits, tea leaves, some unidentified spice (at least to my senses), orange peels, clove, and some light esters. The flavor was basically a bouquet of oranges, tangerines, lemon, grapefruit, and apricot. This is one quaffable beer. It assaults your sense of smell with euphoria. The best thing is, it somehow got better as it warmed a little. The mouthfeel was a little light but just find. It kind of made it even more drinkable. This beer is 6.2% but you'd never know there is any alcohol at all. If this wasn't so expensive, like 10.99 per bottle, then it would make a great spring and summer time session beer. I definitely recommend it if you want to try something new and something different.

aasher, Apr 15, 2011
Photo of proctah
4/5  rDev +4.4%

proctah, Oct 22, 2013
Photo of Chugs13
4/5  rDev +4.4%

Chugs13, Oct 30, 2013
Photo of RISeth
4/5  rDev +4.4%

RISeth, Dec 18, 2013
Photo of rowyn
4/5  rDev +4.4%

rowyn, Dec 17, 2012
Photo of Archemedies
4/5  rDev +4.4%

Archemedies, Apr 12, 2012
Photo of JAHMUR
4/5  rDev +4.4%

JAHMUR, Nov 14, 2011
Photo of paulthebeerguru
4/5  rDev +4.4%
look: 4 | smell: 4 | taste: 4 | feel: 4 | overall: 4

Genziana
750 mL

A: snifter. golden yellow color with a solid white head. decent retention, faint lacing. tons of sediment.

S: tons of citrus and berries. very yeasty. some slight sour notes as well.

T: very smooth flavors, no sours at all which was rather shocking from the aroma. definitely some spices thrown in this. almost tastes like how some flowers smell, like lilies. some citrus but very faint.

M: smooth and mellow. not as crisp as I thought it would be. high carbonation level, but still smooth.

D: very drinkable, but the big bottle can get old after a while. A good beer to share, but a full one is a little tiring.

paulthebeerguru, Apr 20, 2008
Photo of anneseg
3.95/5  rDev +3.1%
look: 4 | smell: 4 | taste: 4 | feel: 3.5 | overall: 4

The golden color of the majority of the pours was beautiful. Like other reviews say the end is cloudy but I don't think this was such a problem, I think most of us are used to sediment on the bottom of bottles. The head retention was actually pretty impressive. I half expected it to be flat since it was on sale for $15 when usually $18 or $19.

There were definitely some nice citrus flavors in there along with the spice. I'm not exactly sure what spice flavors I was tasting but it was over all a pleasurable experience. If the beer was always $15 I would be ok with it but I won't be buying it again unless I see it on sale.

anneseg, Feb 22, 2010
Photo of StJamesGate
3.93/5  rDev +2.6%
look: 3.5 | smell: 4 | taste: 4 | feel: 4.5 | overall: 3.5

Pours cloudy amber yellow with carpet of white foam that doesn't lace, just fades to film. Nose is deep honey malts and a fresh outdoorsy herbal scent. Mango syrup malts, a white pepper hit, banana esters, lemony hops and a Galliano bitter tang. Long citrus candy linger. Medium, chewy, round, slight burn.

Herbs, hops and yeast add up to quite a bitter package - drinks like a BSPA. Impressed again by the depth of flavor in this Italian brewer, and how it can feel so round and chewy but finish relatively clean. Still, too sweet and too much going on to be very quaffable - again, feel like it needs food.

StJamesGate, Oct 01, 2010
Photo of CHickman
3.9/5  rDev +1.8%
look: 4 | smell: 3.5 | taste: 4 | feel: 4 | overall: 4

Had at Birreria, the Eataly NYC rooftop brewery and bar on Tuesday 7/26/2011; bottle said it’s brewed with gentian root.

Pours cloudy orange in color with a massive bubbly 2 finger beige head that faded slowly and left great spotty lacing and a creamy layer on top; tons of bubbles race up the beer.

Smells of citrus hops, herbs, sweet malt, grains, yeast, faint brown sugar, grass, floral hops, flowers and light spices.

Tastes of citrus hops, herbs, sweet malt, grains, yeast, light lemon, caramel, faint brown sugar, grass, hay, floral hops, flowers, spices and something that's funky and hard to determine (gentian root possibly?). It's like a malty, sweet Belgian that goes down easy, very easy in fact, especially on a hot summer evening.

Mouthfeel is creamy and slick, with little to no carbonation, a medium body and sweet dry aftertaste and finish. A very tasty beer that went down easy and could be a session beer; would also pair quite well with a fish dish. I recommend trying this beer.

CHickman, Jul 31, 2011
Photo of Patrick999
3.88/5  rDev +1.3%
look: 4.5 | smell: 3.5 | taste: 4 | feel: 4.5 | overall: 3.5

Quite the interesting beer. Fancy Italian 750ml bottle. Really loud pop when I finally wrestled the cap off, followed by some gushing that would not quit. Clumpy, lumpy foam poured frantically into my snifter. Even after I poured, it still bubbled out the top. Take care, fellow BAs, this beer is alive. Clumpy Houblon Chouffe-type head, with yellow gold body.

Smells very flowery. I'd be inclined to call this a saison if I didn't know any better. That has to be the gentian coming through. It's a "different" nose. Probably not going to be something you've smelled a lot of before. Flowery, with a little sweaty-sock funk. So far, saison is still looking pretty good.

Taste? Like wildflower honey. It has a sweet honey background, with just a little tart, and a heady herbal presence I would really struggle to identify if I didn't know it was gentian.

Even though it looked over-carbonated coming out of the bottle, this is a very soft, luxurious beer. It has a silky mouthfeel.

I shared the 750ml bottle at Abraxas. It's very good, but the residual sweetness would get to me after a while, if you forced me to drink the big bottle by myself. The smaller bottles would be fine, but if you get the 750, bring it to a tasting. Excellent beer to bring to a beer-geek tasting.

Patrick999, Aug 14, 2010
Photo of augustgarage
3.85/5  rDev +0.5%
look: 4 | smell: 4 | taste: 4 | feel: 2.5 | overall: 4

Poured from a 375mL bottle into my Drie Fonteinen tumbler.

Golden poppy liquid, brilliant clarity, and two fingers of rocky ivory foam. Good retention, thick merengue-like lacing.

Lightly fruity, very slightly floral, and lager-like aromas.

The violets contribute a surprising amount of sweetness to the flavor profile, although this is balanced by pale malt and a biscuity minerality. Finishes medium-dry and vaguely spicy. Comes across as an ale-based cocktail in some ways.

Very smooth and rather slick mouth-feel.

The low ABV makes this one go down quickly, though it could use some tartness or perhaps more hops to balance the gentian and sugars. Very unique none the less, and worth trying though I wouldn't buy it again considering the price (the story of so many Italian craft beers stateside).

augustgarage, Jun 24, 2010
Photo of msubulldog25
3.83/5  rDev 0%
look: 3.5 | smell: 4 | taste: 4 | feel: 3.5 | overall: 3.5

Found this bottle at Saraveza several months back; it's been tucked in the back of the fridge ever since. Opened today during a lunch of mostly Italian cheeses and meats (appropriate), poured to a pair of tulip glasses.

'ale brewed with gentian', 6.1% alc. vol./12.7 fl. oz.

A: Shows a little bit of age with a few floating yeast flecks, but is otherwise golden and nearly clear. Steady carbonation and a short white creamy head. Little lace, only a few speckles.

S: Enticing floral aroma: honey, pears, apples. Tingling spices, a little peppery dry.

T: Salted biscuit dryness, with a covering of ground, dusty spices. Hard to figure out: it's sometimes peppery, a little bark, chalky, apple skins, citrus pith, sweeter lemon. General flavor is earthy, a bit soapy/perfumed but with a balance of honey/malt sweetness.

M: Quite smooth, a mild carbonation. A little thin, but a nice building/lasting spice zest.

D: Yep, it's an interesting brew. Strikes me a bit like a spiced version of a good American Pale Ale: similar malt qualities, hop balancing with the addition of 'gentian'. Worthy a try.

msubulldog25, Apr 18, 2009
Photo of Suds
3.8/5  rDev -0.8%
look: 4 | smell: 3 | taste: 4 | feel: 4 | overall: 4

So, this beer is made with spices and the roots of Gentian flowers (Moxie?). It's a nice looking brew, with a large and stable head. Beautiful and very stable lace. The smell is average, a little very light (pils?) malt and some distant herbal hops. Average. The taste, though, makes up for the lack of a good smell. It's sweet, herbal, spicy, and pretty complex. Mild pepper, ginger, and malt. Lots of spice flavors swirl around the taste. Nice. The beer is full bodied and very smooth. Great craft beer.

Suds, May 31, 2009
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Genziana from Birra Del Borgo
86 out of 100 based on 44 ratings.