Smuttynose Gravitation (Big Beer Series) - Smuttynose Brewing Company
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3/5 rDev -17.4%
From BeerAdvocate Magazine Volume III, Issue II:
A new Quad from the Smuttynose Big Beer Series of rotating strong beers. This one is brewed with 200 pounds of raisin purée per batch--WTF.
Rich mahogany with ruby hues and a beige head that fizzes (you can hear it) down to barely a ringed lace. Major fruity esters, boozy, strawberry-rhubarb jam, ripe plum, raisin and underlying malty tones in the nose with a hint of earthy root vegetables. Thick on the palate; vicious, chewy, slick and silky mouthfeel. Slight creaminess from a spritz of fine carbonation. Massive sweetness up front, cloying, with rich toffee, a ton of toastiness (perhaps a bit too much specialty malt?) and some dry chocolate. This is all overpowered by intense fruity esters and a massive raisin presence that gets real jammy at times. Spicy. Slight warmth. Medicinal too, which just tastes too much like cough syrup. At this stage, it's hard to finish, but we did and things due mellow as the beer warms.
We're major Smutty fans across the board, so it pains us deeply to criticize, but this is nowhere near a Belgian Quad. Unfortunately, everyone will compare this to a Quad, as that's what they call it on the label and they failed to mention the most unique ingredient used in the beer--raisin purée! That said, kudos for creating something innovative.
09-10-2010 12:54:39 | More by BeerAdvocate
3.95/5 rDev +8.8%
A pretty beer in a goblet. Reddish/brown color with a modest size white head. An aroma of raisin bread, fruity, and a whiff of alcohol. A taste of dark fruit, and bready, making it a fairly chewy beer. A little too much on the sweet side, but still a nice beer.
03-11-2009 18:16:17 | More by lordofthewiens
4.47/5 rDev +23.1%
Presentation: It was poured from a brown 1 pint 6oz bottle into a chalice. The label gives a nice description of the beer and the year it was bottle-conditioned in (2009) but there is no mention of its ABV%.
Appearance: Its body has a deep warm reddish color with a small light tan head on top. This slowly fades to thick ring with a wispy thin island of foam in the middle. This makes some slick lacing on the glass.
Smell: There are lots of fruity and yeasty notes that offer hints of raison, dried apricot, caramelized malt and alcohol.
Taste/Palate: Its big full body has full smooth texture with lots of dark dried fruit notes, apricot, musty and bready yeast as well as dark caramelized almost chocolaty malts. There is an overall sweetness like Belgian sugar with a low hop presence.
Notes: Belgian Strong Dark Ales and Quadrupels are two of my favorite styles and this one did not disappoint.
08-10-2010 17:27:49 | More by generallee
3.58/5 rDev -1.4%
Bomber bottle, 2009 notched on the label. Pours very dark mahogany with a fairly quickly departing medium khaki head. A gentle swirl reveals strands of stringy lace. Nose is of ripe fruits. One sip reveals the oncoming problem with this beer...its sickly sweet, yikes...notes of sweet jam, and sugary malts. Usually a fan of the style but this lacks the interest and balance of the all stars of the style. The fact that I tried some Southampton Abbot 12 this afternoon did not bode well for this selection. Another sip confirms my feelings, too sweet for my liking. Doubt I would give this one another try
03-28-2009 02:15:44 | More by Billolick
4/5 rDev +10.2%
Thanks for jwc215 for sending this bottle to me.
The beer pours reddish-brown with a tan head. The aroma is brown sugar, dark fruit and caramel malt. The flavor is heavy on the raisins and is very sweet. There is also a lot of vanilla in the flavor. Other dark fruit is apparent as well. The beer is very sweet overall but doesn't really have any of the Belgian character you expect from a quadrupel. Medium mouthfeel and medium carbonation. A pretty good beer, but not really a classic quadrupel.
04-02-2010 21:25:23 | More by Mora2000
3.35/5 rDev -7.7%
Reviewed February 19th
Poured from a 22 oz bomber into a 16 oz pint glass. Firm pour results in a 1/4 inch of off-white/tan head. Head fades quickly and leaves a spotty lace. Color a deep robust, but clear red.
Nose- Sweet raisins and figs. Some grape and apples come through. Lots of dark fruit.
Palate- Whoa lots of raisins. Very sweet. Smooth. Lots of interesting coco, some candied apples. Floral qualities, tones of vanilla. Slightly cloying.
Mouthfeel- Sticky, mildly cloying. Smooth.
Drinkability- Good, however one is more then enough
02-20-2009 02:14:44 | More by Kraken
3.9/5 rDev +7.4%
Slightly hazy, ruby copper colored with a thick and frothy inch high head that settles out slowly.
Aroma of sweet malt, brown sugar, toffee and ripe fruits.
Flavor is rich and sweetish, just shy of cloying, full of overripe pear and apple, some banana and marshmallow, followed by light brown sugar and plum. Slight metallic tinge in the finish, notes of Belgian yeast, followed by a light alcohol warmth.
Moderate carbonation, even mouthfeel, fairly full. Fairly drinkable, but very rich.
02-14-2009 23:42:04 | More by far333
3.74/5 rDev +3%
Super sweet chewy beer, let it age. That's the short review. Appears a deep amber highlighted golden hue with khaki head forming thick head clings evenly to the sides of the glass. Aroma has deep fruit, think ripened apricot, figs, and in this beer's case loads of pureed raisin. A bit of alcohol on the nose, brightens things up a bit let's you know what your dealing with a big ass Belgian style Quad...to balance out the sweetness I'm smoking a RoMa Craft Anthropology, Nicaraguan rolled big ass cigar to bring some earthy spice, black pepper, and leather into the mix it really let's the beer shine the contrast between dark earthy tobacco leaves and these dark fruit elements I speak of. Flavor of the quad is super sweet it just sits on the sides of the tongue, it's big chewy and flavorful in the back end be ready for some alcohol to add to the depth. This bottle I bought for $6.50 needs to be laid down for a year at least, it's still a bit hot and I believe the overwhelming layers of sweetness will mellow out. Body is big bodacious and heavily filled with residual sugars on the palate, it's big and definitely burns and warms your chest with each sip. Overall I suggest getting some 2013 now and sitting on it for future use, great beer now will only get better with some mellowing.
09-24-2013 03:35:41 | More by WVbeergeek
4/5 rDev +10.2%
On-tap at Leon's Full Service in Atlanta.
Pours a slightly hazy dark brown color with a half-finger tan head. The head recedes into a wispy layer on top leaving solid lacing.
Smells of dark malts with good amounts of sugar-coated dark fruits - raisins, prunes, and figs. Also present are hints of toasted malts with even lighter hints of grainy cocoa powder.
Tastes similar to how it smells. Sweet dark malt flavors with hints of grainy toastiness kick things and are joined quickly by large amounts of dark fruit flavors - raisins, prunes, and figs, as in the aroma. Near the end of the sip very slight hints of chocolate flavors work their way into things before fading out into a moderately bitter ending.
Mouthfeel is good. It's got a nice thickness with grainy carbonation.
Drinkability is also good. I finished my glass without any problems and could have another.
Overall this isn't quite up there with the big boys as far as the style goes but it's a solid take. Worth a shot.
08-04-2010 00:24:53 | More by glid02
3.9/5 rDev +7.4%
(Served in a chalice)
A- This beer pours a dense glowing auburn body with a yellowish-tan head that bubbles away even with the support of a slow motion sea of microbubbles.
S- The woody banana ester aroma finishes with a big circus peanut finish that grows into a hair perm aroma as the beer opens up.
T- The dry toffee, honey malt and woody yeast esters have a circus peanut note and dried fruity flavor in the finish with a bitter and some what brassy character that lingers. There is a fusel alcohol that really grows as the beer opens.
M- The medium-full mouthfeel has an alcohol warmth that is full and lingers at each sip.
O- This beer has a big yeast character and some nice malt support with a full alcohol heat that is not harsh but dominates.
02-20-2012 18:11:52 | More by rhoadsrage
3.9/5 rDev +7.4%
This beer is a rosy red-brown, garnet-hued, really, with not just red but a bit of fiery orange swirling around in the highlights. A nice, frothy head forms on top with good hold and stick, leaving a bit of itself behind as it falls.
The aroma is as sweet and candied as I would expect a quad to be, though not as complex as the greats. The dark fruits, caramel, and candied sugars elements are all here with the alcohol, but a quad is typically stronger. There's also a touch of cocoa. What I'm interestingly not picking up quite as much of is the Belgian yeast. There's a touch of spiciness that does add to the Belgian character.
The taste follows suit, though a bit more complexity pulls through, with all the sweetness well complemented by the light spiciness and a bit more roastiness. After a bit, caramel and cocoa fall off and the fruits element dominates, raisin and plum being huge in this one. Alcohol hangs on the whole way through.
The mouthfeel is about what I'd expect, though a bit heavy. This is a sipper for sure. Otherwise, it starts nice and crisp and, with moderate carbonation, leads to a billowy smoothness toward the finish.
Obviously, at 12% this is a bit much to chug, but it's a nice slow sipper. I love Smuttynose and have loved the Big Beer series thus far. This isn't one of the all-time great quads, but it's still very good.
05-05-2011 15:18:28 | More by Brenden
3.89/5 rDev +7.2%
22oz bottle poured into a snifter. 2013 notched on the label.
A: Pours a cloudy orangish ruby with a half finger off white head. Actually a decent amount of carbonation in the brew. Not really much lacing. Head dissipates to the edges in a minute or so.
S: Certainly pulls together for an overall belgian aroma. Lots of the raisin and fig come through. No doubt a boozy background. Malt comes out more as the brew warms up.
T: Pretty dark brew if dark were a flavor. Loads of malt and dark fruits. The belgian yeast is pleasant providing some banana qualities. Alcohol doesn't come out as much as I expected but its still there. Not too sweet.
M: Thick mouthfeel with low carbonation. Has a heavy feel to it but that can be expected with these ingredients.
Overall glad I picked up a bottle of this and can imagine it sitting well in the cellar. A little less complex than some of the authentic belgian quads but still a very big beer.
02-18-2013 23:47:22 | More by CloudStrife
Smuttynose Gravitation (Big Beer Series) from Smuttynose Brewing Company
82 out of 100 based on 492 ratings.