Dismiss Notice
Sneak peek! BeerAdvocate magazine #104 (September 2015) featuring Leah & Oscar from Highland Brewing in Asheville, North Carolina. Learn more ...
Dismiss Notice
Subscribe to our newsletter and get the latest BeerAdvocate updates delivered to your inbox.

Stone Cali-Belgique - Stone Brewing Co.

Not Rated.
Stone Cali-BelgiqueStone Cali-Belgique

Educational use only; do not reuse.
BA SCORE
90
outstanding

1,031 Reviews
THE BROS
-
no score

(Send Samples)
Reviews: 1,031
Hads: 3,072
rAvg: 4.01
pDev: 9.98%
Wants: 98
Gots: 476 | FT: 2
Brewed by:
Stone Brewing Co. visit their website
California, United States

Style | ABV
Belgian IPA |  6.90% ABV

Availability: Year-round

Notes & Commercial Description:
Beer added by: gpogo on 07-23-2008

No notes at this time.
Beer: Reviews & Ratings
Sort by:  Recent | High | Low | Top Raters
Reviews: 1,031 | Hads: 3,072
Photo of Intrinsic
4.65/5  rDev +16%
look: 4.5 | smell: 4.5 | taste: 5 | feel: 4 | overall: 4.5

I finally got to try this at the Mondiale de la Biere today and I've only just sobered up enough now to write this review. What an incredible beer. I went back for more twice on this one despite having access to hundreds of other IPAs today.

Pours slightly hazy with great head, a nice dark straw colour, great lacing, great retention.

The smell is obviously quite similar to Stone IPA. I think most of the same ingredients are used except the Belgian yeast, which adds another dimension that really makes this an exceptional beer. Interesting spice notes with the piney hops and citrus of Stone IPA.

The taste is nothing short of perfect, although my obsession with Stone IPA may have something to do with this. Extremely piney, but fruit flavours abound making this a very interesting IPA.

Mouthfeel is quite dry, very smooth, and very drinkable. I will definitely have another one of these as soon as possible. (917 characters)

Photo of montageman
4.65/5  rDev +16%
look: 4.5 | smell: 4.5 | taste: 5 | feel: 4 | overall: 4.5

Poured into a tulip.

Found one bottle of this gem on a shelf in a local beer shop today. A lucky find indeed. A well made Belgian ale that has impregnated an ultra hoppy Stone IPA to conceive a deliciously complex sweet, bitter nearly perfect beer. Really, this everything I look for in a beer - not sure how readily available this brew is, but if you find a bottle, grab it and gives this bad boy a shot. Highest recommendation. (430 characters)

Photo of OStrungT
4.63/5  rDev +15.5%
look: 5 | smell: 4.5 | taste: 4.5 | feel: 4.5 | overall: 5

This beer pours a clear golden yellow color, with a thick, fluffy white head. The head fades slowly, leaving a great lacing.

This beer smells hoppy. I detect some grassy and citrus hops. It also has a spicy Belgain aroma. I detect some coriander. Earthy yeast aroma is present.

This beer tastes like it smells. Hops and Belgain yeast flavors mixed up. It is great. Grass and grapefruit. Some coriander also.

This beer is full bodied. It is crisp and refreshing. It is highly carbonated, suiting the style. It leaves a hoppy spice aftertaste.

This beer wuld make an excelent session beer. It is not overly alcoholic, and the flavor is great.

Overall: This beer is great. All the conflicting aromas and flavors make this one, surprisingly, a winner. (754 characters)

Photo of risenc
4.63/5  rDev +15.5%
look: 4.5 | smell: 4 | taste: 5 | feel: 4 | overall: 5

Found this on tap at the Big Hunt on Connecticut Avenue, in Washington, D.C. It was my first time trying it. Poured a nice rich amber color -- at least in the light of the bar -- and had a balanced mouthfeel. I found the taste exceptional -- a perfect balance between hops and Belgian backbone. Sweet and tart, like a good apple. Warming enough to drink in the DC winters, but crisp enough that I could imagine quaffing it in August, too. A real winner in my book. (464 characters)

Photo of BigDRS
4.62/5  rDev +15.2%
look: 4.5 | smell: 5 | taste: 4.5 | feel: 4.5 | overall: 4.5

Poured from a 22 oz bomber into a pint glass. My bottle reads "Cali-Belgie"

Pour gets a two finger head that leaves a good amount of really sticky lace. Color is a nice pale yellow and it's virtually clear. Just a bit of carbonation visible.

As soon as I put my nose into it I get a nice funky smell - there's the Belgian yeast. A nice lemony/citrus/zesty smell is just beneath that funk.

Taste is awesome. Hop taste is quite grassy. The hops don't knock you over at all as some other Stone brews do. There's somewhat of a smooth grainy character to it, and the lemony notes from the nose come across mid-sip. Mouthfeel is very smooth and easy drinking.

This is a nice variation of a traditional AIPA. (706 characters)

Photo of ausonius
4.62/5  rDev +15.2%
look: 4.5 | smell: 5 | taste: 4.5 | feel: 4.5 | overall: 4.5

From the 2009 bottling*, 22 oz. bomber

Appearance - Light golden with a hint of orange. Starts with a bit more than a half inch head that settles down within 10 minutes to a thin head with a little lacing.

Aroma - Very fresh & intense earthy, sappy, spicy grapefruit hop nose. Magnificent, in fact! Light pale malt in the background. Hard to describe how spectacular the nose of fresh hops is on this baby.

Palate - Big, round, fat, but very dry. Very aromatic, grapefruit & fresh earthy hops from beginning to finish, but not super bitter. Nice pale malt. Powerful flavor - Amazing balance. Carbonation a hint above medium. Hint of Belgian yeast, but very much a nice background note, although it does expand with some air & as it warms. Seems like not many more IBU's than their regular IPA, but this beer has the essence of fresh hops infused throughout like no other beer I've ever tasted.

Mouthfeel - Everything in balance. Huge flavor & persistence - fairly dry throughout. Medium body with big flavor.

Drinkability - Exceptional - hard to put the glass down other than to exclaim over the quality of this brew.

95/100 - American IPA types just don't get much better than this.

WOW! Not the first time I've tasted this, but for my palate, this is the Perfect IPA. So much intense hop aroma & flavor, but not overly bitter - not that I mind That, either! If there's a better IPA for my palate, I haven't tasted it yet. If you like this style, you have to get a hold of some!

I give thanks for the Stone brewers - too bad I'm on the other coast!?!

* Note: Haven't (but will) reviewed the 2010 bottling yet, but have tasted & it doesn't approach the '09. (1,668 characters)

Photo of dippy
4.62/5  rDev +15.2%
look: 4 | smell: 4.5 | taste: 5 | feel: 4 | overall: 4.5

Poured golden with a nice loose knit cap of bubbles on top. Looks like any other beer, but looks can be deceiving.

The beer has an oak woody smell to me at first. Then citrus notes come through, now that is all I can smell.

The taste is smackingly good, citrusy hops. It finishes dry, beckoning you to take another sip. The citrus rind hops lingers on the tongue.

This beer is pretty bomb. I wish it wasn't so expensive. (424 characters)

Photo of TheCorkStopsHere
4.62/5  rDev +15.2%
look: 4 | smell: 4.5 | taste: 5 | feel: 4 | overall: 4.5

In an attempt to "catch up" on my Beers of 2012 project, I am revisiting some old favorites. The Cali-Belgie from Stone Brewing is one that I've often labeled as my favorite from this West Coast Hop-head brewery. I had never been much of a hop-head myself and frequently found the beers from Stone a little too intense for my preference. I think my tastes have changed pretty drastically over the past few months, so Sara and I are revisiting this interesting little guy.

Stone Cali-Belgie is a twist on one of their old favorites. The brewers take their traditional IPA recipe but substitute a strain of Belgian yeast, giving just a little something 'extra.' The Cali-Belgie pours out a bright golden color with lots of soft, fluffy white foam. Foam is bountiful at first but fades slowly leaving just a small amount of lacing on the side of my Chimay glass.

The aromas of this IPA are far more interesting than I remember! There is definitely some mild hops present but they're much softer style than Stone is usually known for. The hops aromas are dominated by the floral/lightly citrus style hops without being too in-your-face or pungent. There is also a very interesting banana quality to it, very reminiscent of Juicy Fruit chewing gum.

On the palate I'm really surprised by how sweet this "IPA" is! Now don't get me wrong, there is a significant amount of hops on the tongue, but like the nose suspected its a very soft, smooth, and floral hops character. The citrus & banana component is uncanny! It tastes almost as if you were just chewing some Juicy Fruit and took a sip of a Stone IPA, it is absolutely wild!

During the time it took for us to work on this bottle of Cali-Belgie, we also had a few customers inquire about our half-full glasses. One guy was originally going to buy Bud Light but wanted to try something new. After just a couple sips of the Cali-Belgie he was converted. There are few things more satisfying than converting a Bud Light drinker to serious craft beer! (1,997 characters)

Photo of chickenflea
4.61/5  rDev +15%
look: 3.5 | smell: 5 | taste: 5 | feel: 4 | overall: 4

This beer was amazing and unexpected. I am used to being shocked by Stone, but this beer was a very pleasant surprise. A traditional looking IPA except that it is a little light in color. Clear. Tall rocky head that left sculpted concentric rings. Amazingly the yeast aroma really battle with the hops in the nose. On first sniff I was confused. My curiosity aroused. Very spicy as well dominated by cloves. I have never had a beer with such overt clove aroma. Is it the Belgian yeast that does this? The taste was all Stone IPA but more. The brew tasted like a blend of caramel malts, citrusy hops and a fruity taste. The fruit was pineapple-mango-peach-tangerine. Very intriguing. Then the hops wrestled the aftertaste away again. A fresh grassy sort of hops. Very fresh like a wet-hopped beer. The body was medium light with average carbonation. Call the texture soft to oily. Overall a great and refreshingly different beer. It's not your traditional IPA. I give Stone top marks for attempting this unique hybrid and pulling it off. (1,036 characters)

Photo of Immortale25
4.6/5  rDev +14.7%
look: 4.5 | smell: 4.5 | taste: 4.75 | feel: 4.5 | overall: 4.5

Poured into a Dogfish signature snifter. No freshness date.

A- Pours a medium amber color with a 3/4 inch white head that has great retention before becoming an 1/8 inch head leaving a fluffy crown of lacing on the edge of the glass behind it.

S- Tropical fruit pours out of the bouquet while melding with the Belgian yeast to create a wonderful aroma.

T- Heavy notes of pineapple, papaya and guava with a sharp yeast bite to funk things up a bit. Hops play their part as well making things just bitter enough. Juicy and vaporous.

M- Tight and prickly with a lightish body and medium carbonation.

O- One of my favorite Belgian IPAs. Unique and perfectly balanced. (668 characters)

Photo of TheManiacalOne
4.6/5  rDev +14.7%
look: 4.5 | smell: 4.5 | taste: 4.5 | feel: 4.5 | overall: 5

Poured from a 22oz bottle into a tulip glass.

A: The beer is a bright orange/amber color, with a large off-white head that fades slowly and leaves a thick lace on the glass.

S: The aroma is of floral hops, citrus, Belgian yeast and caramelized malts.

T: The taste is very well-balanced with a strong hops bitterness up front that is quickly tempered by a citrus & caramel sweetness and a bready backbone of Belgian yeast. There's also a touch of spice and a hearty malt character. The after-taste is slightly sweet and slightly hoppy.

M: Smooth and very crisp, medium body, medium carbonation, clean finish.

D: Very tasty, goes down quite easily, not too filling, good kick, excellent representation of style, this is yet another excellent beer from Stone, it is definitely worth drinking for a whole evening. (814 characters)

Photo of dsprainman
4.6/5  rDev +14.7%
look: 4.5 | smell: 4.5 | taste: 4.5 | feel: 4.5 | overall: 5

Found this one at the store today and was intrigued by the name. Just got back from Belgium, but being a west coaster, I'm very partial to a good IPA. Lets see how this stacks up.
A- Poured from a 22 into a Duvel tulip, Fat 2+ finger head from a slightly aggressive four. Rich opaque golden-amber body. Loads of lacing and the cloudy head sticks around.
S- The piney goodness of hops stick out with the belgian yeast hanging in the background. Spices and cloves also meet the nose.
T- Wow. All the typical up front fresh hops of a normal stone IPA with the subtle smoothness of belgian yeast sweetness to round them off.
M-Medium bodied, actually very drinkable for 6.9% ABV
Overall, This beer might be my favorite offering from Stone. While it falls more on the American IPA side than an actual Belgian IPA like La Chouffe Houblon, it's just an amazing interpretation of the style. As it warms the Belgian side opens up a little more. My new favorite from stone. World class. (979 characters)

Photo of Bighuge
4.6/5  rDev +14.7%
look: 4.5 | smell: 4.5 | taste: 4.5 | feel: 4.5 | overall: 5

Pale and hazed dim golden body. Big frothy white head that has great retention. Nose is fruity, estery, yeasty, doughy and spicy. What a nice aroma. Great flavor. This one is done right. The belgian yeast gives the beer some nice fruitiness and doughy yeastiness and a little spice. The hops give the beer a nice quenching and vibrant feel. Citrus with orange and lemon zest. Nice clean bitterness. Medium bodied and agressively carbonated, though not gaseous in the least. This would have to be my favorite Belgian IPA so far. This is outstanding. (548 characters)

Photo of grayburn
4.6/5  rDev +14.7%
look: 4.5 | smell: 4.5 | taste: 4.5 | feel: 4.5 | overall: 5

This beer quickly became one of my favorite summertime brews...from the first sip of the golden nectar I fell in love with it's crisp hoppiness, painted on a canvas of estery, malty godliness.
Excellent white head with retention like a swimming pool and laces like skates, very nice.

The smell and taste are exactly what I was expecting, a nice mix of hopping and yeastiness, definitely not overdone, which was my biggest worry.

The mouthfeel is just light enough to be quite thirst quenching and the drinkability is top freaking notch. Another excellent offering from Stone. (578 characters)

Photo of Northjames
4.6/5  rDev +14.7%
look: 5 | smell: 5 | taste: 4.5 | feel: 4 | overall: 4.5

22 oz. bottle.

This is a gold beer, maybe more in line with a Blonde than an IPA, but I would say it is suitable for both styles.

The smell is outstanding. Citrus, pine, resin and floral notes mix with the Belgian yeasty notes.

The beer goes from Belgian yeasty-tart to an all out hoppiness in the finish. It seems to transition from one element to the next very cleanly.

Mouthfeel is a little thin and not sticky enough for a Belgian, but very suitable for an IPA.

Drinkability is good. Very pleasant and easy to drink. (527 characters)

Photo of rapidsequence
4.59/5  rDev +14.5%
look: 3.5 | smell: 4.5 | taste: 5 | feel: 4 | overall: 4.5

22 oz bottle, mine says Cali-Belgie, not Belgique.

Appearance: Pours a just slightly hazy yellow-gold. The beer is very bubbly-- almost effervescent. The head is thick at first and composed of tiny bubbles. It bubbles away like a champagne head and leaves a little smear on top. Not getting much lacing that lasts more than a few seconds. Once the head fades, it actually looks a little still and boring.

Smell: Very sweet citrusy hops. Like orange those orange slice candies if they were available in lemon and grapefruit too. The belgian yeast is bready and a little spicy, without being peppery. Also a little bubblegum or cotton candy.

Taste: This is probably the best marriage of IPA and BPA that I've tasted (which is admittedly only a few). The hops are sweet and bitter upfront and stay that way almost until the finish, which is all belgian yeast breadiness and a little, just a little spice. All through the middle the hops and Belgian esters swirl together nicely.

Mouthfeel: There's nothing really bad or overly compelling about the mouthfeel. The carbonation is about right for a Belgian pale, which I think it should be.

Drinkability: I'm really glad they didnt overshoot and make this "imperial" sized. 6.9 percent is just right here. This is an excellent Belgian IPA which mixes the best of both. (1,317 characters)

Photo of HopJ
4.59/5  rDev +14.5%
look: 4 | smell: 5 | taste: 4.5 | feel: 4.5 | overall: 4.5

I was very nicely surprised by this beer. I don't drink a ton of Belgian beer so I can't speak to that directly but I loved this variation of an IPA. Aromatically it held my attention very well with lots of fruit and hops. I got a bit of apple right through to the taste followed by just enough bitterness to keep it in balance. I am very happy when a beer leaves me thinking about the next time I will taste it. (412 characters)

Photo of RussBecker1
4.59/5  rDev +14.5%
look: 3.5 | smell: 4.5 | taste: 5 | feel: 4 | overall: 4.5

A- Pours a light golden ale, with decent carbonation and a slight one finger head that sits for a decent amount of time. Cloudy to a certain degree, but not the most aesthetically pleasing despite leaving a pretty good amount of lacing towards the latter half of the glass.

S-Big on both hops and citrus, mainly grapefruit. The Belgian yeasts are very very faint, but they are there if you know what you are looking for. The California side of this IPA (Hops, citrus) is enticing, and there is enough complexity to keep it interesting.

M-Surprisingly full bodied. Heavier than it looks,but still light enough to keep the citrus poignant on the tip of your palate.

T-Wow. Cali-Belgique proved to be one of the few beers that I have tried where each and every note was not just on point, but keep me on my toes throughout the 22oz. Between the hops, the citrus, the slight bit of malt, and all that being intertwined with the hit of sweet and tangy Belgian yeast, I was absolutely smitten. I know I am in the minority, but this very well could be my favorite Stone IPA, and it is quickly becoming one of my very favorite Stone products in general.

O-Keep in mind if you are expecting ruination, or even the regular Stone IPA, you will be disappointed as the hops do not kick your ass and drag you through a ditch. Without comparison, Cali-Belgique becomes a surprisingly complex and incredibly delicious beer. (1,412 characters)

Photo of NWer
4.58/5  rDev +14.2%
look: 4.5 | smell: 4 | taste: 5 | feel: 4.5 | overall: 4.5

On the bottle neck: "Enjoy by 12/01/11"
Nice pour into my Chimay chalice. Moderate head. Dissipates quickly. Golden clear appearance.
Wow factor in force. Initial impression of taste blew me away. Fantastic experience. Semi-sweet up front followed with a lemon peel back end.
A very enjoyable beer so full of flavor it's sipable without the extreme ABV. (353 characters)

Photo of dacrza1
4.57/5  rDev +14%
look: 5 | smell: 4.75 | taste: 4.5 | feel: 4.25 | overall: 4.5

DATE TASTED: July 27, 2013 ... GLASSWARE: Duvel snifter... OCCASION: post-Cinders dinner drink while viewing The King's Speech... APPEARANCE: beastly swirling tornado of effervescence ripples up to a snow-white two-finger head that frames a burnt-orange body--a beautiful glass to behold... AROMA: sugary, candied fragrance sits atop the classic Stone hops head bang--worth the price of admission just to soak in its aura... PALATE: soft, mildly hopped yet beguilingly medium-bodied; warming in the throat but not intrusive; a paradox that seems to bare out the uniqueness of the beer's namesake...TASTE: provocatively complex tart--grapefruit and pepper indelibly cascade with each swallow; balanced and substantial,, but in a way that invites a second bottle... OVERALL: Playing off the film, I will say this beer does not possess a stutter-inducing ABV, but the flavor, frame and aroma, this beer has a lot going for it...the over-babble on the bottle label could be severely edited, but no mistaking the beer is one I will recommend to friends, give as a gift and seek out when disposable income is more readily available... (1,128 characters)

Photo of TaySuth
4.56/5  rDev +13.7%
look: 3 | smell: 4.5 | taste: 5 | feel: 4 | overall: 4.5

Appearance: Color is lighter than I expected, a rather light amber. One and a half finger head that recedes steadily into a nice ring of lacing.

Smell: Fantastic aroma with a great amount of hops and definitely some belgian smell. Very inviting.

Taste: Excellent. Completely unique in comparison to Stone's standard IPA. Lots of hops in excellent balance with the sweetness of the grains. Really shows some Belgian character.

Mouthfeel: Nice carbonation with a very smooth finish. Very good body.

Overall: I really enjoyed this beer. Its original appearance had me going in with lower expectations but then it impressed the rest of the way. This taste was right up my alley and I will be on the lookout for more Belgian IPAs in the future. (744 characters)

Photo of rogueleonardi
4.56/5  rDev +13.7%
look: 3 | smell: 4.5 | taste: 5 | feel: 4 | overall: 4.5

A - Pretty average, Very light in color, good carbonation, nice amount of carbonation climbing up the side of the glass. Leaves about a fingers worth of white head that quickly disappears into a foam cap.

S - Tons of hop and citrus hit you right in the nose. The sweet orange and grapefruit create a nice balance with the spicy hops. There's some good Belgian yeast in this one, with a hint of lemons as well. OH and did mention hops?

T - Definitely a Stone brew. Huge amounts of hops and citrus carry over from the scent. I was right about the good Belgian yeast, gives this beer a unique but tasty quality. There's a good balance between the cloves and hops, and the citrus.

M - Thin bodied, very drinkable, with a good amount of carbonation.

O - This was delicious. Being from Ohio I don't get a lot of different Stone brews but this definitely one of my favorite. It's not much to look at, but where it's lacking in appearance, they made up for it in taste and smell. and for $6 a bomber, you cant beat it. (1,014 characters)

Photo of Tballz420
4.56/5  rDev +13.7%
look: 5 | smell: 4 | taste: 5 | feel: 4 | overall: 4.5

Bought this after meeting Greg at Four Firkins. I've been begging him for years to come to MN, so im VERY glad to be able to buy this 1 min away from my home.

Very clear gold color brew. Very nice sized, pillowy white head. Very sticky. Belgian candy scent, nice light malts. The taste can be summed up as Stone's take on a belgian IPA. Delicious, candy, pretty malty. Various fruits. Very well-blended hops. Pretty full-bodied, very sharp on the tongue. Well done. (467 characters)

Photo of EnojysAnyBeer
4.56/5  rDev +13.7%
look: 5 | smell: 4 | taste: 4.5 | feel: 5 | overall: 5

A- Crystal-clear, golden body with very visible bubbles that rise at a steady rate. The head is huge and fluffy, souffle-like. Lacing is left in puffy lines with some big bubbles. I keep wiping away condensation to gaze into this perfect brew

S- At first, it is too funky with yeast in front and on full assault. However, as you get used to the funk, you find the full aroma to be candy sweet with fruity flavors from the hops.

T- The fruity flavors dominate, but are not afraid to take a background role while the sweet honey and flowers shine. Simply delicious IPA made complex by the yeast funk which highlights all the flavors even though it tastes a bit like chalk on it's own

M- Silky-smooth carbonation helps carry the bitter hops across the tongue. Medium/Heavy body with a syrupy drag

D- Wow. I almost forgot how much I love Stone's creativity. I had no problem drinking the entire 22oz. bottle by itself. Needs no food, shines on it's own. (953 characters)

Photo of Snow81
4.55/5  rDev +13.5%
look: 4.5 | smell: 4.5 | taste: 5 | feel: 3 | overall: 4.5

Appearance: Pours yellow with a orange tint

Head: Big frosty white head

Smell: Hops with a hint of coriander

Taste: flavors of hops and coriander bounce back and forth

Weight: medium to light body with a low to medium carbonation

Finish: coriander on the palate and hops in the cheeks (289 characters)

Stone Cali-Belgique from Stone Brewing Co.
90 out of 100 based on 1,031 ratings.