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Smuttynose Gravitation (Big Beer Series) - Smuttynose Brewing Company

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

Educational use only; do not reuse.
BA SCORE
82
good

297 Reviews
THE BROS
70
okay

(Read More)
Reviews: 297
Hads: 574
rAvg: 3.63
pDev: 15.98%
Wants: 33
Gots: 55 | 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:
Beer added by: Oxymoron on 01-01-2009

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: Reviews & Ratings
Sort by:  Recent | High | Low | Top Raters | Read the Alström Bros Beer Reviews and Beer Ratings of Smuttynose Gravitation (Big Beer Series) Alström Bros
Reviews: 297 | Hads: 574
Photo of rhoadsrage
3.88/5  rDev +6.9%
look: 4 | smell: 3.5 | taste: 4 | feel: 4 | overall: 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. (760 characters)

Photo of rapidsequence
3.77/5  rDev +3.9%
look: 3.5 | smell: 4 | taste: 3.5 | feel: 4 | overall: 4

22 oz bottle. I think it was $6.99 from Total Wine. 2011 vintage.

Appearance: Pours reddish brown with some haze. Light tan colored head with brief retention. Some spotty lacing.

Smell: Very raisiny with a sticky sweet malty aroma. Bready Belgian yeast. Good smelling, but very much on the sweet side, and not much complexity.

Taste: Boozy, sweet, and raisiny. A hefty malt backbone. Nice yeasty flavor lends a bit of spice.

Mouthfeel: Pretty big feel. Medium to high carbonation lends some creaminess. Bit of stickiness at the end.

Overall: Its a decent, but not real interesting quad. A little one sided with sweet, raisiny, booze. Pretty good value, but bettter quads to be had for sure. (695 characters)

Photo of barnzy78
3.7/5  rDev +1.9%
look: 3.5 | smell: 3.5 | taste: 3.5 | feel: 4.5 | overall: 4

22oz bomber, poured reddish-brown with a foamy, tan head that dissipated quickly as expected for the ABV. Aromas are sweet and boozy with caramel and toffee, not much Belgian. Tastes are sweet and boozy once again. Complex notes of toffee, candi sugar, caramel, brown sugar, and raisin. Reminds me of liquid butter toffee? Not as much Belgian influence as I'd hoped for. Mouth-feel is buttery and smooth, full-boded and syrupy. Finishes sweet with a slight prickle on the palate from the alcohol, which is relatively well concealed given the massive ABV. Overall, I really enjoyed this, but it seemed to lack the Belgian qualities I was expecting for a quad. It seemed to be a great American Strong Ale at best. It is still worth the try if you can find it, as I really did enjoy it....again, just not what I expected. (818 characters)

Photo of rlee1390
3.92/5  rDev +8%
look: 3.5 | smell: 4 | taste: 4 | feel: 3.5 | overall: 4

A-Deep ruby red with a one finger head.

S-Dark fruits, plums, clove

T-Dark fruits, clove and banana.

M-Medium bodied but lacking in carbonation.

O-One of the few Quads I've had with banana flavors. The dark fruits I normally associate were there as well but this one had a nice touch of banana. (299 characters)

Photo of Vonerichs
3.6/5  rDev -0.8%
look: 4 | smell: 4 | taste: 3.5 | feel: 3 | overall: 3.5

On tap at the Oswego Taphouse.

Cloudy copper body with a respectable off-white head.

Smells heavily of raisins, dates, and toffee.

The flavor has a ton of raisin and dates. It gets a bit messy and abrasive in the middle and is boozy.

Mouthfeel is syrupy and astringent.

Overall, just ok. It's a bit rough at times. (319 characters)

Photo of vette2006c5r
3.89/5  rDev +7.2%
look: 3 | smell: 4 | taste: 4 | feel: 3.5 | overall: 4

Gravitation pours a dark amber color, with a small head that dispated quickly. There was a strong sweet, grape like smell. The taste was heavy, a bit warm, and on the sweeter side. The raisins can easily be picked up. It was deffently more of a sipping beer. Overall Gravitation is a good beer, close to a barley wine in flavor, but still very enjoyable. (354 characters)

Photo of WhiteOak
3.5/5  rDev -3.6%
look: 3.5 | smell: 3.5 | taste: 3.5 | feel: 3.5 | overall: 3.5

A- Deep antique copper color, with a dark tan head that settles quickly.

S- Aromas of dark fruits (fig, date, raisin) and chocolate covered banana. Toffee, leather. cherries.

T- Rich, thick malt flavor, chocolate, dark fruits. A touch of salt.

M- Medium CO2, a touch of stickiness. (286 characters)

Photo of DrDemento456
3.97/5  rDev +9.4%
look: 3.5 | smell: 4 | taste: 4 | feel: 4 | overall: 4

Got a bottle at my local Giant Eagle for $5.99

A - Slight sediment even with a 10oz pour with a deep mahogany brown and a finger of head that turns to a mild yet sticky lace ring.

S - In your face raisins and dried plums with a bit of spicy yeast and noticeable alcohol smell.

T - Starts off with sweet dark fruits then a touch of Belgium candied sugars, with a bit of chalky yeast flavor which really isn't as dry as others described. ABV is incredibly well hidden.
As it warms though the alcohol is not as masked.

M - Thick, creamy, and ABV is well hidden but very warming so it's indeed a sipper.

Overall this is the best beer I encountered from the big beer series. Massive ABV, smooth taste, and great flavor for under 6 bucks. Almost beats out Victory - V12 but I enjoy that beer in it's own right. Will have to give a bottle to my brother since he like Quads. Definitely consider getting it again. Drink it cold if you can! (935 characters)

Photo of Ratman197
4.12/5  rDev +13.5%
look: 4 | smell: 4.5 | taste: 4 | feel: 4 | overall: 4

Bomber from Half Time poured a clear reddish amber with a lasting amber head. Aromas of carmel, toffee, plum, raisin, pear, banana and light spice. Palate was medium to full bodied and smooth with a dry finish. Flavors of toffe, carmel, dark fruit and light spice with a smooth dry warming lingering toffee finish. (314 characters)

Photo of Jawn
3.42/5  rDev -5.8%
look: 3 | smell: 3.5 | taste: 3.5 | feel: 3 | overall: 3.5

2011

Poured into a chimay goblet. There's a pork and pickle sandwich next to it too, yum. It's murky, amber, and has a tiny head dissipating into a broken ring. I smell a bunch of sweet fruits and heavy booze. Everyone else is saying they used raisin puree in this beer and I have an easy time believing this. It's also obvious with every sip that this is 12%abv. Sometimes my sip tastes like jam on toast, but sometimes it tastes like paint. If I swish it around in my mouth it feels like I took a hit of some pop rocks, which I guess is sort of cool. Overall I don't regret picking this up, but I'm not very stoked about it. I don't think it does belgian quads justice, but at least it tastes good with my hot pork. (718 characters)

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

Yup, this is the real deal. A quadrupel through and trhough. If you expect a quad to be super heavy - loads of malt and alcohol, then this one delivers.

It has that belgian fruity malty yeasty thing going but good. Not much is disguised or subtle. It works better than some other recent tastes, which leads me to wonder what it would be like if I set a couple of these aside for a year, which I think I will do. (413 characters)

Photo of Immortale25
4.06/5  rDev +11.8%
look: 4 | smell: 4.25 | taste: 4 | feel: 4 | overall: 4

Poured into a pint glass. Label says bottled in 2011.

A- From a heavy pour comes a one finger head on top of a deep, dark brown colored body. The head eventually rests at about an 1/8 inch with some lacing.

S- Complex aromas of raisins, dates, figs and black cherries. Not as many alcohol fumes as I would expect from a brew of such high ABV.

T- Strong, malty tones upfront with a solid dose of alcohol kick that's not as apparent as was expected. Also, the aforementioned fruit flavors make a solid appearance and work well with the pronounced malt characteristics. Pretty well-balanced, all things considered, but not as lively and enjoyable as other quads I've had.

M- Medium carbonation sets this aside from other traditional quads but doesn't detract from the more wine-like sensibilities associated with the style.

O- Does the job well, but could use a little more personality. (888 characters)

Photo of mdaschaf
3.42/5  rDev -5.8%
look: 3 | smell: 3.5 | taste: 3.5 | feel: 3 | overall: 3.5

2010 Vintage.

A: Pours a dark ruby color with a very small head that dissipates quickly and no lacing at all.

S: Lots of dark fruit, mostly raisins, some bready malt, and a bit of alcohol.

T: Heavy on the dark fruit, especially raisins again, which makes sense since raisin puree was added. It is rather sweetm but also is still rather hot, with a slight burn as it goes down. There is a little brown sugar, a little spice, and some bread.

M: Full bodied with low carbonation. Very sweet and still hot. I feel like the alcohol is coming out the longer I drink it, warming my stomach. Drinkability quite low.

O: It was ok, the alcohol presence made it very difficult to drink, and got worse as it warmed. The flavors were ok, the raisin puree overpowered a lot of it I think though. (791 characters)

Photo of scruffwhor
3.97/5  rDev +9.4%
look: 3.5 | smell: 4 | taste: 4 | feel: 4 | overall: 4

Dark ruby color and minimal too quick head. No residual foam. This beer has a slight, syrupy consistancy to it. Really like the color, classic Quad.

Lots of syrupy fruit and dark toasted malt. Raisins and a toasted pound cake with a little heat from the abv. to let you know this beer has a kick to it.

Rich syrupy palate enhances the raisin and pruney fruits flavors of this beer. The middle to finish brings out that fruity pound cake, toasted malt flavor along with a well integrated alcoholic heat on the finish. Great nightcap sipper. (541 characters)

Photo of Nordstrand
2.9/5  rDev -20.1%
look: 3.5 | smell: 3.5 | taste: 2.5 | feel: 2.5 | overall: 3

I'd like to say this beer tastes like cherry since this is my virginal review. Zing!

It's a beautiful color and has a strong fruity scent but is overwhelmingly boozy and taste too strong of alcohol. A bit too complex and strong for this hop seeker. (249 characters)

Photo of TTAmod
3.34/5  rDev -8%
look: 3 | smell: 4 | taste: 3 | feel: 3 | overall: 3.5

The artwork on the bottle actually caught my attention, then I noticed it was a Quad...score! Sorry, but I'll be comparing this one mostly to The Reverend, which I had the other night. I haven't had Rochefort, etc, for a while, so I can't fairly compare this to Trappist Quads.

Bomber poured into Chimay chalice.

A: Pours an odd hazy brown (much akin to apple cider.) Very little head. What's left of the head leaves a decent lacing.

S: Smells like dark fruits (cherry? raisin?) and heavy alcohol.

T: Starts decent enough with a smack of dark fruits, bready yeast, and a nice malt base, but it gives way to pure alcohol. My palate is fairly insensitive to alcohol in beer, but this one has a very heavy medicinal, sterile alcohol on the back end. It's a bit too much. A shame, especially since it's promising in the beginning. I won't hurt it TOO much, however, since it's hard to be subtle with the alcohol at 12%. I've definitely had more abrasive beers in the 12% range.

There is a slight raisin overtone, but don't let the 200 lbs per batch scare you...it doesn't really show through.

M: Not too bad. On the lighter side of medium. Just a TAD too light for a quad.

O: Definitely worse than The Reverend, but it's still pretty decent. Like stated before, it's an interesting experiment. It's not really a great example of a quad, but I'm glad I tried it. Not for the faint of heart, but at $6 per bottle, there really isn't any reason not to try it if you haven't before. (1,482 characters)

Photo of ToasterChef
3.12/5  rDev -14%
look: 3 | smell: 3.5 | taste: 3 | feel: 3 | overall: 3

I fill my Lion's Pride goblet from a 22oz bottle. The beer is opaque and tan colored. A pinkish/tan head rests on top. It is somewhat small and settles to a ring of foam around the edge of the glass. Swirling the glass leaves a foam slick on the walls.

Aromas of raisins, Belgian candi sugar, and alcohol make up the nose.

Prune and raisin flavors dominate, with some sugary sweetness and plenty of alcohol. It's a little harsh at this point, but probably will mellow out over time.

The beer is full bodied with average carbonation. The coating is sticky but not too thick. Warmth from the alcohol is present throughout each sip.

This is a decent enough quad but it doesn't stand up to the giants of the style (Pannepot and the various Trappist quads). Still, if you see a bottle available, it would be an interesting experiment in cellaring. (846 characters)

Photo of Cyberkedi
4.32/5  rDev +19%
look: 4 | smell: 4.5 | taste: 4.5 | feel: 4 | overall: 4

Pours a clear dark mahogany brown with a fairly thick pale tan head. Strong aroma has fruity, caramel, butterscotch and woody notes with hints of molasses and licorice. Whoa, that is one strong flavor, jumping on the taste buds with banana, apple, caramel and malt notes plus hints of wood, butterscotch, horehound and wood. It is fairly sweet, but not cloying, and has quite a strong alcohol bite. Lively, edgy texture has near-full body and leaves a sweet, fruity, slightly candy-like finish. Let this beer's gravitational field draw you in! ;) (546 characters)

Photo of Satchboogie
2.83/5  rDev -22%
look: 4 | smell: 3.5 | taste: 2.5 | feel: 2.5 | overall: 2.5

Reviewed from notes: 2011 vintage

A: Pours dark muddy brown/red with 2 fingers of tan head, fairly tight bubbles, decent retention, leaves just a little lacing.

S: Prunes, raisins, banana, lots of alcohol, brown sugar.

T: Lots of banana, prunes, raisins, and a little apple upfront with a somewhat subdued malt body, light to moderate brown sugar. Alcohol absolutely takes over quickly throwing out a ton of phenols and solvent-like qualities. Very rough and boozy finish that tastes more like a cleaning solution than a beer. Not all that malty, no complexity or depth, and not very tasty.

M: Medium body, moderate carbonation, harsh alcohol and plenty of burn. Not smooth at all.

O: Maybe a couple of years on this bottle would work wonders, but as is, it's a mess. I wouldn't suggest this to anyone, especially not as an introduction to Quads. I wouldn't want anyone thinking this is what a Belgian quad should taste like. (934 characters)

Photo of billab914
3.5/5  rDev -3.6%
look: 3.5 | smell: 3.5 | taste: 3.5 | feel: 3.5 | overall: 3.5

22oz bottle into my CBS snifter. It poured a deep, mahogany brown color with a thin, spotty head sticking mostly to the edges of the glass.

The aroma has a big sweet, malty profile to it with some notes of caramel, fig, raisin and brown sugar all coming through. A little bit of alcohol is there as well. Not a bad aroma, but it seems to lack the balance some of the better of the style have. I would have preferred a little more earthy yeast spice and some bitterness to help offset some of the malty sweet flavors in the nose.

The taste shows a little more of the earthy, yeast spice throughout the flavor. The sweeter notes of brown sugar, raisin and caramel also play a big role throughout the beer. It felt very sweet and malty in the finish. It wasn't bad, but again it didn't seem to have great balance.

The mouthfeel is on the heavier side with carbonation being moderate. Overall it was a decent beer, but not an outstanding one of the style. It felt a little unbalanced to me at times with the sweet, malty flavors being a little too dominant. Overall a pretty decent tasting beer but not outstanding in the style. (1,130 characters)

Photo of emerge077
4.02/5  rDev +10.7%
look: 4 | smell: 4.5 | taste: 4 | feel: 4 | overall: 3.5

Poured from a 22 oz. bomber into a chalice. Deep reddish auburn color, fading into orange around the lower meniscus of the glass. A thin layer of light tan foam forms on the surface, leaving spotty bits of lace strewn about the sides. Foam dissipates soon, leaving a glassy surface with a thinly broken veil across it.

Rich aromas of moist banana bread, walnuts and pecans, dates. Wow, this is really something... need to let it warm up to fully appreciate.

Equally rich flavors, some velvety maltiness and dried fruits like dates, banana, sultanas. Nutty almond, walnut, and pecan flavors too. Feel is rich, medium bodied with lower carbonation. Dry finish with lingering toffee and raisin/sultana flavors. Not at all cloying. Alcohol does creep up a bit, leaving a warming sting. This eventually limits drinkability, but it's likely best shared anyway. $7 bomber is a deal. (877 characters)

Photo of angelogarcia3
4.85/5  rDev +33.6%
look: 4.5 | smell: 4.5 | taste: 5 | feel: 5 | overall: 5

Smuttynose Gravitation Quadrupel is a fantastic beer with a noticeable raisin aroma. Served at Tap & Mallet of Rochester in a 8.5 oz glass had a very thin head and a deep burgundy color. On the nose the first aromas are of raisins, and molasses. At 12% ABV the first taste warns you that this is a high alcohol beer. Soon afterwards, the flavors of raisins, molasses, and a hint of honey lull you into a false sense that the alcohol is not that high. This beer in the mouth gives you a slight effervensce and syruppiness. I really love this beer! (546 characters)

Photo of drpimento
3.87/5  rDev +6.6%
look: 3.5 | smell: 4 | taste: 4 | feel: 3 | overall: 4

Served with a nice, tan, thick, foamy head that subsides after a bit to a ring and islands. Color is a hazy dirty copper. Aroma is malt, fruit, yeast, caramel, toffee. Flavor is massively malt/fruit sweet with a little bitterness and very little carbonic tang. Body is full, round, lush but carbonation is kinda flat. Finish is like flavor with a big alcohol warming factor. (374 characters)

Photo of jayhawk73
3.95/5  rDev +8.8%
look: 4 | smell: 4 | taste: 4 | feel: 3.5 | overall: 4

Pours a dark brown color w/ a thin one finger cocoa head. The head quickly goes down to a sliver. Decent lacing on my snifter glass as well. This beer isn't a black hole, and you can see the carbonation swirling around when held to the light. In the nose I get caramel malt, raisin, date, fig. Pretty tasty smelling, although not quite in the realm of the best in style. The thing I'm missing in this brew is belgian yeast- it's like a gaping hole in an otherwise solid brew. Taste is the same as the nose, with the raisins and figs really coming out. Slight alcohol burn on the aftertaste, but I like that in big beers. Mouthfeel is a little on the thin/dry side for what I'd like, but it's not bad. Overall, this is a pretty decent brew. Definitely not a world class Quad, but I enjoyed it. Cheers. (800 characters)

Photo of obywan59
4.1/5  rDev +12.9%
look: 4 | smell: 4 | taste: 4 | feel: 4 | overall: 4.5

650ml bottle. Bottle conditioned in 2011. Drawing on the label of Icarus falling.

Thick reddish-brown. Carbonation bubbles clinging to the side of the glass before rising up to the 3/4 finger fizzy head that soon totally recedes, now looking more like a wine than beer. No lacing. Different.

Initially, the combination of the Belgian yeast and the raisins reminded me, strangely, of hotdogs. After the beer warmed, the aroma settled down to rich dark fruit and alcohol with some light toasted malt.

Very sweet. Dark fruit, especially raisins. Grapey at times, and rather vinuous. Not cloying to me, but then I heeded the warning of other reviewers and allowed the beer to warm.

Sticky and syrupy to the point of dryness. Almost astringent. Very warming.

Definitely better at room temperature. Full flavored and full bodied. The 12% ABV demands; SIP ME! Personally, I think the raisins meld perfectly with this Belgianh ale. As Emeril would say: Kick it up a notch! (969 characters)

Smuttynose Gravitation (Big Beer Series) from Smuttynose Brewing Company
82 out of 100 based on 297 ratings.