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Smuttynose Gravitation (Big Beer Series) - Smuttynose Brewing Company

Not Rated.
Smuttynose Gravitation (Big Beer Series)Smuttynose Gravitation (Big Beer Series)

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BA SCORE
82
good

492 Ratings
THE BROS
70
okay

(view ratings)
Ratings: 492
Reviews: 288
rAvg: 3.63
pDev: 16.25%
Wants: 23
Gots: 35 | FT: 2
Brewed by:
Smuttynose Brewing Company visit their website
New Hampshire, United States

Style | ABV
Quadrupel (Quad) |  11.50% ABV

Availability: Winter

Notes/Commercial Description:
This big, dark ale is brewed using a variety of Belgian specialty malts along with 200 pounds of raisin puree per batch. The resulting flavor is a viscous mix of dark fruit, rum, toffee and raisins balanced with aromatic fruitiness of the Belgian yeast.

25 IBU

2009 - 6.6%
2010 - 12.0%
2011 - 12.5%
2012 - 12.0%
2013 - 11.5%

(Beer added by: Oxymoron on 01-01-2009)
Beer: Ratings & Reviews
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Ratings: 492 | Reviews: 288 | Display Reviews Only:
Photo of ppoitras
ppoitras

Massachusetts

3.53/5  rDev -2.8%

22oz bottle purchased as a single from Yankee Spirits, Sturbridge, MA.

Poured into an imperial pint glass, formed a 1/2" tan head over the clear reddish copper brew. Head lasts quite well, with leggy slow-falling lace. Aroma is sweet, fruity, heavy on the booze. Taste follows the nose, with the alcohol close a bit harsh. Mouthfeel is a little rough, and drinkability is limited by all of the above. This one's harsher than I would have expected from Smutty, made me think of The Beast. Seems way stronger than 8.5%abv. Your mileage may vary.

04-01-2009 23:16:02 | More by ppoitras
Photo of grayburn
grayburn

South Carolina

4.18/5  rDev +15.2%

First off let me say that I consider this beer a belgian barley wine, this is not completely true to the quad style, but the belgian characteristics are strongly intact.
She pours a dark garnet with a minimal head that laces to the glass like nobody's business.
The smell and taste start with raisins and continue until they reach a malty crescendo that finishes with just a slight bitterness to prevent being cloying.
The mouthfeel is excellent, this is an after dinner sipping beer to pair with a fine cigar. Like I said before, this is a belgian barleywine, I could sip on this for quite a while.

03-30-2009 03:53:28 | More by grayburn
Photo of Gmann
Gmann

New York

3.2/5  rDev -11.8%

Pours a ruby brown color with an average khaki colored head that settles into a light head. The aroma is pretty non-existant for a Quad, not much aroma at all. The taste is of grape juice, kind of sugary but not really, I dunno. Does not have the complexity of a good quad, not even close. The body is thin, no real dark fruit flavors or malt complexity. It doesn't taste bad, not at all, but just doesn't taste like a quad or belgian brew. Not sure if a belgian yeast strain was used or any candi sugar. Moderate feel, with fizzy carbonation; finishes sweet. If you are looking for a sweet old ale with fizzy carbonation, this might be for you. Doesn't really remind me of a belgian beer at all, just a sweet beer. I guess this is the first BIG BEER Serier beer that I am disappointed in, though, again, it doesn't taste bad.

03-29-2009 04:25:24 | More by Gmann
Photo of akorsak
akorsak

Pennsylvania

3.58/5  rDev -1.4%

Thanks to tai4ji2x for this bomber bottle.

A: The quad is a dark brown color, murky and forboding. When I hold the glass up to a light, deep red colors become evident. The head was small on pour and is a stagnant thin band atop the beer.

S: The ale is very sweet, practically raisin juice with some booze. The sweetness masks the yeast profile and thick malts nicely.

T: Man, this is sweet. The raisins dominate the taste with a burnt sugar sweetness. Under the raisins, a thick malt base and Belgian yeast linger. Brown sugar and cloves are evident, along with boozy warmth. As the quad warms, additional spices emerge, with a touch of vanilla, licorice and candi sugar.

M: The mouthfeel is tainted by the raisins. They are sweet, soooey! The spice profile takes a little while to emerge but it compliments the raisins.

D: I'll be lucky to finish off the bomber. The sweetness coupled with the booze is almost too much.

03-29-2009 01:53:24 | More by akorsak
Photo of Billolick
Billolick

New York

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
Photo of ChainGangGuy
ChainGangGuy

Georgia

4/5  rDev +10.2%

Appearance: Pours a near opaque, reddish-brown body with a thinnish, beige head.

Smell: Sweet-smelling, fruity nose of complimentary fruit trays, toasted sugar-coated bread, and dark caramel. Slight hints of good, clean alcohol.

Taste: Richly sweet, bready upfront maltiness quickly followed by a veritable blast of fruity flavors: raisins, dates (you eat'm!), cherries, and even a little bit of banana. Very tiny pinch of mulling spices. There's a recovery of malts with tastes of caramel and brown sugar. Mild transitional bitterness. A bit more candy. Warming, fruity finish.

Mouthfeel: Medium-full body. Medium carbonation.

Drinkability: Whaddya know, that's pretty good. A lovely, sweet, fruity beer from the fine folks over at Smuttynose.

03-24-2009 23:09:13 | More by ChainGangGuy
Photo of NeroFiddled
NeroFiddled

Pennsylvania

4.35/5  rDev +19.8%

Poured into a large tulip-shaped glass, Gravitation is almost black in color beneath a short head of densely creamy tan. When held to the light it reveals clear highlights of ruby and dark mahogany. The head retention is limited, as is the lacing. Normally, at 8.5% a little leeway would be given, but there's more than enough sugary malt here to keep it aloft, and to leave the walls of the glass coated in sticky lace. One factor that may be contributing, however, is its delicate carbonation. It's soft and smooth, probably below 2.5 volumes, and combined with the full body it's really nice. So there's at least that trade off. Appearance is probably the least important aspect of a beer anyway.

The nose is slightly limited as well, given its girth, but it expresses dark fruit, a hint of wine, milk chocolate, and delicate spice mixed with powdered cocoa.

The flavor is much fuller than the aroma lets on, and it's quite dense. The flavors are really supple, and far from over-done. They combine really nicely, and although that somewhat cuts down on the complexity wherein different flavors appear at different times in the mouth, this still works. You just have to pay attention because they're not just handed right to you. It's not bombastic, but still rich. It's mainly sweet and somewhat bready with brown sugar, gentle caramel, and hints of soft chocolate or cocoa. But it's also fruity with plum, juicy apple, raisin, some tropical fruit (suggestions of orange, mango, coconut) and some dark skinned bitterness. Delicate spices (very subtle clove, black cardamom, white pepper, and cinnamon - maybe even a caraway seed or two) balance it. Leafy and somewhat floral hops lay in the background (they sometimes appear herbal, but I think they just appear that way in conjunction with the malt and yeast). The alcohol is not at all noticeable; and the bitterness lays beneath the surface with just enough presence to keep everything taut.

As to drinkability, it's certainly impressive. It's readily accessible, if a little bit sweet at first, but then again, it is a kind of a sipper as well, and that sweetness IS balanced. The strength is present but not overwhelming; and it's rich enough and complex enough to keep you coming back to it time and time again. They could have easily gone overboard with this one, but instead they kept everything reigned in and focused, and that seems to be something that's kind of out-the-door with U.S. brewers these days. Superb!

03-24-2009 03:29:42 | More by NeroFiddled
Photo of John_M
John_M

Oregon

3.95/5  rDev +8.8%

On tap at Max's today.

The beer pours a dark brown color with good head retentiona and lacing. On the nose, I get quite a bit brown suggar and molasses, with a hint of vanilla and underlying spice. On the palate, this beer is pretty rich and sweet, with chocolate, cherry, vanilla and a touch of coffee. Mouthfeel is rich, long, soft and creamy. Alcohol is pretty well disguised, though you can tell it's up there a bit. However, the excessive sweetness hurt this beer's drinkability just a bit.

Still, all things considered, this is a pretty tasty beer from Smuttynose. Not bad at all.

03-22-2009 18:49:59 | More by John_M
Photo of horshack7
horshack7

Massachusetts

2.8/5  rDev -22.9%

Appearance: Out of a 22 ounce bomber comes a very dark burgandy with a light fomay head. That thins out to about half a finger worths.

Aroma: Scents of plums raisins mild hints of rum and other dried fruits. Delicate notes of roasted malts and little bits of hop notes.

Taste: Out of the gate it starts out smooth. Only little hints of figs and raisins with the slightest bits of hop bitterness. Not as hearty as I thought it might be but it's not too shaby.

Notes: It is not as big as my first impression of it was but it's decently drinkable. Cheers

03-22-2009 02:20:20 | More by horshack7
Photo of jnn4v
jnn4v

Virginia

3.78/5  rDev +4.1%

A: Reddish brown, burgundy / mahogany color. No haze or sediment. Tan color head.

S: Cherries, molasses and raisins greet you to the overall sweet bouquet. Copper and more generic grainy malt follows.

T: Lots of malts come to the front. Syrupy sweet but not a front of the tongue sugar sweetness or even a fruit sweetness. This is a molasses / brown sugar / dark malt sweetness. Some candied fruits buried in there. Possibly currant or plum.

M: Full bodied, very fine carbonation. Not nearly as carbonated as a true Belgian quad would have been. Somewhat syrupy.

D: Thick, heavy, somewhat syrupy, and with a flavor that isn't entirely appealing enough to make me desire an entire 22oz. Although I'm enjoying it, I'm glad I'm splitting this with my wife.

03-22-2009 01:49:24 | More by jnn4v
Photo of JayNH
JayNH

New Hampshire

3.3/5  rDev -9.1%

A- Pours a deep clear burgundy with a large foamy head. Solid retention and lacing.

S- Mild alcohol warmth. Dark sweet malt, fruit notes of plums, figs and raisins.

T- Sweet candy sugar, too much, it really overwhelmes everything else. A grassy hoppiness in the finish.

M- Sweet, slick and heavy. Way undercarbonated, almost flat.

D- Ok, a very mild brew.. It goes down easy but definitely a disappointment for a quad. This is like an overly sweetened dubbel.

03-16-2009 21:54:18 | More by JayNH
Photo of LuckySevens82
LuckySevens82

Florida

3.9/5  rDev +7.4%

22 oz bomber bought at Big C Liquors

Pours a deep reddish brown with about a half finger of off-white head. Lacing is okay.

Smell is toasted malts, loads of ripe fruits, some belgian candi sugar, a little bit of a hop aroma. It's pretty inviting.

Taste highlights pretty basic belgian. Loads of plum and fig flavors, a bit of that toasty flavor that I mentioned as well. Not normal for a belgian, but it works really well with this beer's big flavors. Some spice: cinnamon, clove, a bit of coriander.

Mouthfeel is a bit slick for my liking. I prefer my quads to be a bit more carbonated, but overall a good drinking beer and another great offering from Smuttynose. So glad that they've finally made it to Florida!

03-16-2009 01:53:28 | More by LuckySevens82
Photo of MattBrooks
MattBrooks

Massachusetts

4.35/5  rDev +19.8%

Pours with a brownish red color and a fairly insignificant head. Some caramel and spice notes come through on the aromas. It weighs heavy in the mouth with classic belgian flavors and a hint of coriander; but goes down clean and smooth. A great find. Now I gotta go find some more

03-15-2009 15:05:12 | More by MattBrooks
Photo of jonziefle
jonziefle

North Carolina

3.7/5  rDev +1.9%

From notes:

Appearance: Poured a deep crimson read, clear, and with carbonation present. One finger light tan bubbly/foamy head, which reduced to a thin layer. Some lacing present.

Smell: Sweet (but with a hint of sourness) malts, slightly bready and yeasty. Alcohol nose comes right through. Very crisp, with light but sharp hops.

Taste: Sweet and oily hops come through. Tastes of dark fruit (grape/raisin) and brown sugar, with some pineyness. Didn't get too much of the malts though, taste seemed to be the reverse of the nose.

Mouthfeel: Full-bodied and "tingly" in the mouth. Somewhat oily feeling.

Drinkability: Very good. An excellent sippin' beer. While its on the sweet side and not overall balanced, it still is very appealing. Interesting mouth feel.

03-14-2009 23:35:14 | More by jonziefle
Photo of deltatauhobbit
deltatauhobbit

Maine

3.95/5  rDev +8.8%

Pours a dark amber color with good dark ruby highlights when held up to the light, smallish head that fades fast, doesn't leave any lacing.

Smell is a fairly typical Belgian, strong malt aroma with hints of banana and dark fruits

Taste is very creamy and slick, very very slick and buttery, good maltiness with a strong banana presence, strong carbonation prickles the mouth in a good way, pretty sweet and candied.

03-13-2009 20:00:54 | More by deltatauhobbit
Photo of lordofthewiens
lordofthewiens

Maine

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
Photo of HeyItsChili
HeyItsChili

China

4/5  rDev +10.2%

A - Pours dark brown with a khaki head that dissolves to a viscous film.

S - Dark caramel, toffee, dark fruits, really nice and complex. Roasted malt, raw sugars. Nicccce.

T - Brown sugar, ripe figs, raisins, Belgian yeast. Reminds me a bit of a Corsendonk brown ale that isn't quite there yet, which isn't a knock on the beer. Few brews can hope to achieve the level of the Donk.

M - Really substantial. Chewy, full bodied.

Notes - The drinkability take a little hit because there's an aspect of the sweetness I don't really care for, and for the thickness of the brew.

03-10-2009 01:51:39 | More by HeyItsChili
Photo of jwc215
jwc215

Wisconsin

3.4/5  rDev -6.3%

22 oz. bottle - poured into SN Big Series glass, 2009 bottling:

Pours dark garnet witha promising head that soon falls to hardly a wisp. Virtually no lacing sticks. Nice color, though.

The smell is of dark fruits covered by alcohol. A bit of dark bread is there.

The taste is dark fruits, esp. raisins (no surprise, as raisin puree has been added. Very sweet - almost in that "artificial fruit" sense. Booze is certainly hot and in the front - I would have guessed higher than 8.5%. Chocolate comes through as it progresses. Sweetness balanced (barely) by a touch of medicinal herb.

It is thick and sticky, yet it does have carbonation, giving some creaminess. Sticky sweetness and alcohol numb the tongue. Oddly, it seems to have less of a body as it progresses, but doesn't fall lower than full side of medium. Not too happy with lingering fruity cough medicine aftertaste.

I would have been happy splitting this one with a friend. It's not bad - interesting - I think the "interesting" part keeps it going, because it is just doesn't "do it" for me. It is raisiny and boozy, but not in the "Raison d'Extra" way - though it wasn't going for that. It does seem, by the indication on the bottle, to go for a Belgian quad style. Not really catching that, either, though.

I can see "mixed opinions" here. So, I would recommend splitting with a friend before going it alone. Also, aging might take some of the raw heat off, which would probably be helpful.

03-08-2009 04:42:29 | More by jwc215
Photo of Wasatch
Wasatch

Utah

4.33/5  rDev +19.3%

Thanks goes out to mixylplik3 for this brew.

Bottled Conditioned 2009

Pours a very nice brown color, nice carbonation, nice one-finger creamy tan head, with some nice sticky lacing to follow. The nose is malty, with some dark fruits, slight yeast/spice. The taste is very nice of malts, figs, raisins, prunes, nice sweetness, very slight spice. Medium body. Very drinkable, this is a very tasty brew, thanks Matt.

03-08-2009 00:08:46 | More by Wasatch
Photo of roscoehnj
roscoehnj

New Jersey

2.78/5  rDev -23.4%

Whenever I see a new Smuttynose Big Beer series I pick one up because I've never been dissapointed. Unfortunately this one breaks the streak.

Looks good, smells like a good quad - there could be a lot going on here.

Taste - whoa, whats with all the residual sugar? This is the sweetest quad I've had and that's not a good thing. The overpowering sweetness overshadows whatever complexities reside in this beer. There may be a lot there but I just can't get past the sweetness and can't finish the bomber. It might not take more than a few tweaks to make this good and I hope the folks at Smuttynose rethink this one.

03-06-2009 01:52:02 | More by roscoehnj
Photo of MrHurmateeowish
MrHurmateeowish

Maine

4.75/5  rDev +30.9%

22oz bomber from Shaw's. Pours a translucent dark copper body with a thin film of quickly dissipating tan head. Raisin, date, nut, brown sugar, with a touch of pith and citrus in the aroma. Raisin, date, chocolate, caramel, brown sugar, toffee and coffee toward the finish. Medium in body with ample carbonation. Very drinkable for the style, abv, and complexity. A very good quad, tasty, balanced, complex, and drinkable for the style. Another slam-dunk from Smuttynose!

03-05-2009 21:50:29 | More by MrHurmateeowish
Photo of tpd975
tpd975

Florida

3.48/5  rDev -4.1%

Thanks to Deepak at Kingdom for the share.

A: Pours a nice amberish blackish hue with a nice creamy off white head. Little retention and no lace, but proper glassware was not used.

S: Nice aromas of roasted malt, dark fruit, yeast, and a touch of booze.

T: Very sweet with lots of dark fruit up front. Light yeasty notes can be picked up along with a nice roast. It finishes very sweet, too sweet to be honest. The more I drank the sweeter it seemed to get. The last few gulps were like granulated brown sugar mixed with prune juice.

M: Medium to full in body, smooth with good carbonation.

D: Not the most drinkable. I had around 7 ounces and by the end it was just too much sweetness.

03-05-2009 19:06:37 | More by tpd975
Photo of TheManiacalOne
TheManiacalOne

Rhode Island

4.5/5  rDev +24%

On-tap 2/27/09 at Track 84 in Warwick, RI, served in a tulip glass.

A: The beer is a deep dark brown color, with a short off-white head that fades slowly and leaves a thick lace on the glass.

S: The aroma is of roasted malts, dark fruit, Belgian yeast and a touch of hops.

T: The taste is malty very nicely balanced with sweet flavors of dark fruit, brown sugar and Belgian yeast. There's a mild but complementary hops presence and a touch of smokiness. The after-taste is slightly sweet.

M: Crisp and very smooth, medium body, medium carbonation, finish is slightly sticky.

D: Very tasty, goes down quite easily, not too filling, good kick, very good representation of style, this is an excellent strong and flavorful Belgian beer to drink for a whole evening and yet another great beer in the Smuttynose Big Beer Series.

03-01-2009 21:07:10 | More by TheManiacalOne
Photo of BeerSox
BeerSox

Virginia

4.1/5  rDev +12.9%

22oz bottle into 25oz snifter.

Nearly opaque red, except when held up to the light, where it exhibits a ruby glow. A two finger tan head slowly settles to a thick cap.

Dark fruit is up front, along with an almost porter-like roastiness. Some brown sugar is in there as well.

Another hit of dark fruit - plum, dark sugars. A little bit of the roastiness returns. The overall flavor is very very sweet. The phenols are non-existent. The alcohol is well hidden, almost undetected. Full bodied.

Very sweet, low on the bitterness. A very drinkable Quad, definitely an American version. Though not as strong, the amount of malts are just as high. This one could probably be enjoyed from a pint glass. Recommended.

03-01-2009 04:39:14 | More by BeerSox
Photo of auxiliary
auxiliary

Rhode Island

3.83/5  rDev +5.5%

appearance - Brownish color with a small head.

smell - Some caramel and alcohol smells here.

taste - Some caramel and brown sugar, followed by some bitterness.

mouthfeel - Medium-full body.

drinkability - Not bad beer, worth a try, didn't wow me in any way.

03-01-2009 03:47:18 | More by auxiliary
Smuttynose Gravitation (Big Beer Series) from Smuttynose Brewing Company
82 out of 100 based on 492 ratings.