Gulden Fraug Belgian Style Ale - Hoppin' Frog Brewery
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Ratings: 64 | Reviews: 51 | Display Reviews Only:
3.65/5 rDev +2.8%
A decent smooth drinking Belgian, sweet and above average mouthfeel.Not complex, merely a yeast play. A whole lot of alcohol, minerally, still very drinkable. Nothing especially spicy or tasty. Lots of caramel with secondary fruit like apple and pear
09-16-2007 05:54:59 | More by Sammy
3.58/5 rDev +0.8%
Rustic orange with a dark bronze-like glow. This one looks darker than a BSPA and lighter than a BSDA. In fact, it looks like a barleywine. Up top is an orange creamsicle cap that is firm rather than creamy and is beginning to leave a fair amount of lace in a 'king's crown' pattern.
The nose is different and is really nothing like most BSDAs that I've run across. I'll have to go with general impressions since specifics escape me. The beer is fruity (ripe apricots and red apples perhaps), spicy and mildly phenolic. No alcohol is evident. This could go either way on the taste buds... and I can't predict which way it'll be.
If I was to judge Gulden Fraug alongside most world-class BSDAs, it wouldn't fare very well. If I was to judge it in isolation, as a big, sweet, Belgian-style ale that tries very hard to please and (mostly) succeeds, it isn't too bad. Damning with faint praise? Well, let's see what the beer at mid-bomber has to say for itself.
It's still golden fruity (apricots soaked in apricot brandy, sugar syrup and Laphroaig Scotch whisky) and has more of a clovey, Belgian yeast character than I initially gave it credit for. The Laphroaig comparison was meant to describe the phenolic undercurrent that probably isn't prominent enough to turn off the casual drinker (assuming the casual drinker would buy it). There's no shortage of different flavors, it's just that they could fit together a little better.
Anyone who likes big beer should like the mouthfeel. All that malt and all that candi sugar make sure that things are as plush as can be. I like the stickiness that accumulates on the tongue and the lips as the ounces disappear.
Gulden Fraug Belgian Style Ale won't put even a minor scare into the most accomplished BSDAs and is probably my least favorite Hoppin' Frog beer so far. That doesn't mean that it isn't a worthwhile purchase. This is a recipe that Mr. Karm should tweak until he comes up with something that can stand shoulder to shoulder with the rest of his excellent lineup.
10-02-2007 21:20:36 | More by BuckeyeNation
2.93/5 rDev -17.5%
Bottle courtesy of Jdoolin: Poured a copper color ale with a medium size white foamy head with limited retention and some light lacing. Aroma of sweet sugary malt is dominating with some subtle hints of spices. Taste is mostly dominated by some very sweet malt and some light spices. No hops were discernable and no yeast characteristics that I usually like to find in BSA. Body was slightly light for the style and alcohol was not discernable. I thought this was way too filtered and lacking in spices or yeast characteristics to be truly enjoyable.
06-01-2007 15:54:31 | More by Phyl21ca
3.1/5 rDev -12.7%
Looks like I found my first mediocre Hoppin' Frog Ale. The beer looks suspect after pouring a with dull carbonation and only a pale ale-ish head formation with low staying power. Sparkling clarity and a bright copper hue makes for an attractive liquor. Aromas of very sweet, syrupy malts dwarf any Belgian character and drown out the moderate fruits. Hops (as they should) are bringing up the rear with subtle herbal, floral notes. The beer tastes as sweet as the nose suggests, I could argue the syrupy flavors with touches of molassas and brown sugar. Although the beer is acidic at times, it does not get into the berry, vineous, sharp flavors that Belgian pales often bring. The body suffers the most becasue of the weight of the beer due to modest carbonation, high sugar rates, and lingering syrup flavors. The beer never dries out or lifts off the palate, leaving a long sweet aftertaste and some hop bittering late. As far as Belgians are concerned, this beer is characterless, lacking depth, and displaying only timid Belgian identity. I like the beer but could just as easity pass for an English Barleywine with a tawny Port twang.
07-28-2008 02:34:39 | More by BEERchitect
3.95/5 rDev +11.3%
Appearance: Pours a slightly hazy, deep amber body topped only by a thin ring of white bubbles.
Smell: Sweet-smelling, candylike nose with notes of sugar-coated fruits, mainly peach and plum. Also, there's some bready malts as well as light touches of spice and alcohol.
Taste: Plenty of maltiness with a mixture of simple syrup and caramel sweetness. Perhaps a pinch of toasted grain in there as well. Dash of spices. All of the fruitiness from the nose. Hmm, there's no real hop character or bitterness, leaving this to finish sweet, candyish, and decidedly warming.
Mouthfeel: Medium-plus body. Medium carbonation.
Drinkability: Well, that's that. And about that, I must say: it's yummy. An instant classic Belgian-style brew? It's doubtful. But it's tasty and surely that's gotta still count for something these days.
01-01-2009 19:58:40 | More by ChainGangGuy
2.85/5 rDev -19.7%
22 oz bottle into a goblet.
Pours a clear amber color with a thin layer of fizzy bright-white head. This stays foamy around the edges, leaving just a smattering of light frothy lacing behind. The aroma sits very heavy in the nose, with a lot of sticky sweetness, fruit, some spice, and a still waft of warmth. This is very thick and tangy feeling in the nostrils for sure.
Once again, this has an almost overbearing sweetness to it that gets to be a bit tough to take after a while. Tons of bread, candied sugars, green apples, and a dash of spicy yeast. With how sweet this is, I'm surprised to find a fairly assertive tingle of spicy hop bitterness in this but it unfortunately does little to balance out the sticky feel of this. The mouthfeel is full and thick in the mouth, with a heavy amount of alcohol beef.
This one just didn't work for me at all. Just way to sweet and boozy for my tastes, without a whole lot of definition in the flavor to help distract from the body. I split this bomber with a buddy and it was still too much for me.
01-29-2010 17:23:18 | More by Kegatron
3/5 rDev -15.5%
Clear amber color. Moderate head that recedes into a rocky tight-bubbled froth. Almost no lace.
Mild, but appropriate, Belgian aromas; yeasty and grainy.
Very, very sweet for the style. Good Belgian flavors. Full bodied, low carbonation. Frankly, it's too sugary for me to enjoy.
Gosh, I do root for these guys, because I like their daringness to try new things. But, this one is a miss.
05-24-2008 23:07:10 | More by smcolw
3.93/5 rDev +10.7%
Appears a semi-transparent, slightly hazed, deep gold with a small, off-white head that quickly fades out. Spotty lacing is left around the glass.
Smell is of yeasty, sugary, lightly spiced Belgian yeast with some coriander and pepper jumping out of the glass.
Taste is of yeasty, Belgian goodness with light notes of banana, citrus, and melon.
Mouthfeel is medium bodied, sugary with citrus resounding. There is also a spice that blankets the entire tongue. Pretty decent Belgian style out of Ohio.
02-09-2007 21:46:15 | More by weeare138
3.58/5 rDev +0.8%
(Served in a tulip glass)
A- This beer pours a reddish-brown body with lots of strands of tiny bubbles. The thick ring of light tan foam sticks to the glass with each sip.
S- This beer has a light smooth dry perfumed hint of hops with a light raw grain note when it warms a bit.
T- This beer has a dry spiced hops note with hints of smooth white sugar. The finish has a soft alcohol taste. As it warms there is a raw grain and toasted malt note but it is very light. As it warms there is a light apple juice note to the malt.
M- This beer has a medium-light mouthfeel with a dry finish. This beer has a light alcohol warmth in the finish but it is pretty smooth.
D- This beer has some nice smooth flavors especially for a 10.5% ABV but there is not a lot of complexity or yeast qualities to contribute to the flavor.
06-22-2007 02:24:58 | More by rhoadsrage
3.88/5 rDev +9.3%
Thanks to jpm30 for this one.
Poured into a chalice a nice clean/clear dark golden orange color, nice carbonation, tiny fizzy head, not much sticky lacing afterwards. The nose is malty, yeasty, spicy, and some caramel. The taste is sweet, malty/yeasty, warm from the spices and alcohol, and some caramel. Medium body. Drinkable, I like this one, not bad at all, recommended.
09-18-2007 23:42:04 | More by Wasatch
3.85/5 rDev +8.5%
22 ounce bottle into tulip glass; no bottle dating, but was recently released. Pours fairly crystal clear deep orange/amber color with a small foamy light khaki head with poor retention, that reduces to a ring of lacing fairly quickly. Slight spotty lacing on the glass, with a fair amount of streaming carbonation. Aromas of big apricot, plum, pear, apple, melon, light banana, clove, pepper, honey, candi sugar, bread, herbal, grass, and yeast earthiness. Very nice aromas with good complexity and balance of fruity/spicy yeast. earthy hops, and pale malt sweetness; with good strength. Taste of big apricot, plum, pear, apple, melon, light banana, clove, pepper, honey, candi sugar, bread, herbal, grass, and yeast earthiness. Fair amount of earthy yeast spiciness on the finish; with lingering notes of apricot, plum, pear, apple, melon, light banana, clove, honey, candi sugar, bread, herbal, grass, and yeast earthiness on the finish for a while. Very nice complexity and balance of fruity/spicy yeast, earthy hops, and pale malt sweetness; with a nice malt/yeast balance and zero cloying sweetness after the finish. Medium carbonation and medium-full bodied; with a smooth and fairly slick mouthfeel that is nice. Alcohol is well hidden with only a light warming present after the finish. Overall this is a very nice Belgian strong pale. All around good complexity and balance of fruity/spicy yeast, earthy hops, and pale malt sweetness; and very smooth to sip on for the big ABV. A very enjoyable offering.
08-13-2014 02:45:18 | More by superspak
3.33/5 rDev -6.2%
Pours a maple syrup, yet clear amber hue. No lacing or head or bubbling. Good color, but lacks in all other departments. The aroma is very sweet, notes of light maple syrup, toffee, some honeydew, and cantaloupe. The The taste is very sweet with fruits of cantaloupe, buttered honeydew, light carameld toffee. But insanely sweet, no balance at all. Don't taste any yeast and no off setting hop flavors. The palate is equally sweet as well as syrupy with a lot of heat from the alcohol as the beer warms. A little boozey.
06-24-2008 04:54:44 | More by scruffwhor
3.98/5 rDev +12.1%
Hazed copper body has a modest beige head that quickly falls to a film before completely vanishing. A few flecks of lace cling to the sides of the goblet. Aroma is mostly fruity, peaches and melons. A note of clove is in the background. Mouthfeel is medium bodied with a nice soft carbonation. Taste has a smooth fruitiness. Apricots and nectarines. Slight yeast presence but virtually no hops. Some cotton candy notes. A pretty good effort but not in the same class as their imperial stout.
07-09-2007 17:10:44 | More by merlin48
3.35/5 rDev -5.6%
I had such high hopes for this one; Ive really taken a shine to the ol Frogs.
The pour was the first clue of a beer not quite right in the world nice looking amber / copper, but almost no head or any stick to it lacing. But with such a high power brew, this was not unimaginable.
Aroma was weak notes of Belgium yeast and black pepper hiding in that booze, I suppose. Taste had some promise, but the bottle was too green and needed a year of aging. Sugar cane, candied fruits along with the classic Belgium yeast try to appear, but are quickly throttled by the high alcohol cough syrup.
Im glad to have tried this, I will grab another and off to the cellar it goes, for at least 6 months.
07-30-2007 13:11:57 | More by Vancer
2.83/5 rDev -20.3%
Appearance - pours a bright copper, a scant head with little formation, duration, or lace.
Aroma - smells boozy. Some malted, candyish grain getting through but not much.
Taste - a light whiskey malt flavor, diluted but it's there. Some Belgian candi sugar provides a standard element. Some phenols and spiciness come across okay, there is a peaty, almost ashtray-like smoke on the aftertaste and finish. I think that could be chased with a little heavier grain bill, this beer just tastes watered down. The abv is well hidden for a brew of this strength, but pushes a little as it warms.
Mouthfeel - thin and under-carbonated.
Drinkability - it could be better, still - I wish I could make a brew like this on *my* first attempt. A plain entrant for the style; I wouldn't go for it again unless I hear it has improved.
03-08-2008 19:16:20 | More by brewdlyhooked13
3.33/5 rDev -6.2%
Bottle. Amber hued in color with a thin, white head. Aroma hints of caramel, toast, Belgian yeast and dark fruit, with a light hint of peanut butter. Flavor is of chewy malts, dark fruits and Belgianess. Its a quaffable and poundable brew, but just mediocre when compared to true Belgians and other Belgian style American Brews. Its just very average.
08-01-2007 06:54:31 | More by Crosling
4.5/5 rDev +26.8%
Live Review. Poured from a bomber into my Gulden Draak gold rimmed tulip glass. No observed "best by" date but I cannot imagine that it matters.
A Golden yellow orange translucent body under a one inch fluffy white head with some lacing even before I take a sip. Nice look. 4.0
S Sweet malt for sure. No hops smell. It reminds me a LOT of its likely inspiration, Gulden Draak. It may have a more sugary smell than Gulden Draak and maybe a bit less complex than Gulden Draak. 4.0
T Sweet malt explodes with flavor. There is a healthy dose of apple cider flavor that is not repulsive but it is certainly there. Belgian style yeast is noticeable and welcomed. Alcohol is very well hidden. 5.0
M Full with big ABV and big sweetness. Very appropriate to the style. 4.5
D I will drink and enjoy the bomber but nothing beyond that. 4.0
Notes: A fitting tribute to Gulden Draak. I am glad that I found this as Gulden Draak is one of my favorites. My first from this brewer, I have B.O.R.I.S. the crusher waiting for me next.
06-06-2009 12:32:32 | More by adamette
3.48/5 rDev -2%
This beer was served in a wide mouthed wine goblet.
Appearance: The beer pours a clear coppery gold coloration. The head is a thin short lasting biege coloration. No lacing remains on my glass.
Smell: The beer has a very caramel malty smell at first. This gives way to a vaguely banana, clove smell. The smell has a very spicey peppery smell to it. I am not certain if the pepperyness is from coriander or alcohol.
Taste: This beer has a very malty base. The maltyness is of a caramel dispensation. I taste a bit of clove, citrus and banana in the flavor. The finish has a bit of spicey pepperyness.
Mouthfeel/ Drinkability: The beers body is on the plus side of medium. This beer is very smooth and nicely carbonated. This is a very alcoholic brew however; I find the alcohol to be well incorporated into the beer. This beer is fairly easy to drink. This was not a bad stab at a Belgian style ale. Try it you may like it.
02-27-2007 12:50:39 | More by nlmartin
4.45/5 rDev +25.4%
This is an excellent Belgian style beer, and what a pleasure it was to experience it. The beer pours a clear amber color with some head, but nothing exceptional. The beer is medium bodied, a little syrupy, less so than I was expecting, and plenty carbonated. The taste is just wonderful florals, Belgian candied sugars in the fermentation, coriander, spice, clove, and a big orange bouquet. This is an eminently delicious beer and about the most well disguised 10% ABV beer you're likely to find. This is one that is well worth seeking out. L'Chaim.
05-11-2008 23:37:37 | More by albern
3.43/5 rDev -3.4%
How do you spell Golden Frog? Pours a hazy straw colored yellow with a some golden hues throughout. A soft white head when poured but not much retention or lacing during the tasting.
The nose comes out with a nice malty presence. Some grainy and sugary sweet notes up front but still remains dry and soft. Some limited yeast notes with some minor fruity tropical fruit and orange aromas. Some minor cloves. Would have liked more of a ester profile but good. Some noticeable alcohol notes are bit of a deterrent.
The taste is very muddled overall. The malt, to start, has a harsh grainy taste that is boarder line astringent. The candy notes are muffled by some of the off yeast notes. Some limited butyric notes with more of a drainage like taste. Some Belgium characteristics with a some fruity and floral notes. A light pepper and noticeable alcohol flavors as well. A bit hoppy for style but ok.
The body is closer to moderate than light. Would like way more carbonation to balance some off notes. Some close astringent notes. Overall there the nose was promising but feels like the beer was under pitched with some of the off notes.
10-30-2008 20:48:37 | More by Oxymoron
3.33/5 rDev -6.2%
22 oz. bomber bottle that has a black with tan on the right side label with the picture of Hoppin' Frog's symbol of a happy and most likely drunk green with a white belly hoppin' frog on a yellow rectangle background. While he's hopping up and down, he's trying to steady a pint of yellow beer. To no avail, the yellow beer is spilling all over the place. The frog doesn't seem to care. In front of him in big colorful letters is "Gulden Fraug" and the words "Belgian style Ale" below that. Right below the frog's mug of yellow beer is the Ohio brewers stamp. To the left of the fog is the Government warning, address of the brewery, web address, and the barcode. To the right of the frog is a little blurb about the beer, it's specifications of 10.5% ABV, 96 OG, 20 FG, 16 IBU, and another picture of the hoppin' frog. Like all the other Hoppin' Frog bottles, this one doesn't have a date anywhere on the label or bottle. They give you everything else, but no date on the bottle or label. It was served in a Lion Brewery goblet/tulip glass at room temperature.
It poured a golden orange with a slight tint of copper to it. It started off with a 1 finger head of white bubbly foam, but that soon quickly dissipated into a few white bubbly rings along the edge of the beer and no white bubbly lace in sight. What I'm trying to say is that you don't want to blink for a second after you pour the beer because then you're going to miss the head of foam entirely. It does dissipate away that quickly! Even if you don't blink, you're not missing out on much. It had an aroma filled with juicy fruits of all sorts, a splash of yeast, and some peppery hops in the background. When I first popped the cap, it had a slight non baked no salt added pretzel dough aroma to it, but that aroma didn't bother to stick around. That's too bad because I actually enjoyed that aroma. It would have better it was still there. I guess you can't have everything. The taste was sweet and fruity with a slice of apple, a berry here and there, a small drop of orange, and half of a banana. After I got past the juicy fruits taste, there was only the slightest taste of toasted malts, yeast, a dab of alcohol, and some peppery hops in the background. There wasn't much taste in here other than the fruits. I would have to say that the fruits stand out as the dominate flavor in this beer. No other flavor in this beer can stand the mighty power of the juicy fruits. Take that toasted malts! The mouthfeel was slick indeed. There was no sight of the 10.5% ABV they say this beer has. Just be careful because it does sneak up on you. Other than that, it only had a slight mild aftertaste of juicy fruits, peppery hops, and a drop of alcohol. Is this a Belgian style Ale? I think it is, but it's only on the last rung of the Belgian style ladder. If you like your beers fruity with a jumble of fruits, then you'll like this one. For me, I wouldn't blow another $6 on this one. One is more than enough. If I'm in the mood for a fruity beer, then I might pick this one up again. That's the only way.
04-22-2007 21:43:00 | More by AltBock
District of Columbia
3.33/5 rDev -6.2%
this is my third HF offering and the BORIS left big shoes to fill
the head doesn't exhibit any lasting power, despite some hefty carbonation. the aroma released is heavy on the coriander and spicy hops.
too sweet. up front the body feels big and supportive but the follow through is cloying and the bitterness insufficient to keep the whole thing contained. it's fruity (cranberry, apricot and pear). it's really not all that bad...certainly doesn't affect its drinkabilityin any drastic way...but something worth thinking about
03-06-2007 04:42:45 | More by bruachan
Gulden Fraug Belgian Style Ale from Hoppin' Frog Brewery
81 out of 100 based on 64 ratings.