Barbãr (Belgian Honey Ale) - Brasserie Lefèbvre SA

Not Rated.
Barbãr (Belgian Honey Ale)Barbãr (Belgian Honey Ale)

Educational use only; do not reuse.
very good

338 Ratings

(view ratings)
Ratings: 338
Reviews: 160
rAvg: 3.92
pDev: 11.99%
Wants: 16
Gots: 64 | FT: 0
Brewed by:
Brasserie Lefèbvre SA visit their website

Style | ABV
Belgian Strong Pale Ale |  8.00% ABV

Availability: Year-round

Notes & Commercial Description:
Beer added by: Todd on 10-10-2000

No notes at this time.
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Beer: Ratings & Reviews
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Ratings: 338 | Reviews: 160
Reviews by the Alström Bros:
Photo of Todd
4.38/5  rDev +11.7%
look: 4.5 | smell: 4 | taste: 4.5 | feel: 4.5 | overall: 4.5

Presentation: 12oz brown bottle, with a ghostly/artsy looking barbarian label. There's yeast settled in the bottle as well.

Appearance: Cloudy (from the yeast), golden, with a big, rich, frothy, white creamy head. A white whisp of a lace and "stick to the glass" is left behind as it goes down.

Smell: A dreamy floral/citrus, spiced, coriander, sweet and crisp aroma.

Taste: Wow! This is one of those knock you off your ass flavours ... first sip is herbal-like in flavour, aided by the aroma. Then comes a large dose of rich honey sweetness with some malted sweetness notes in support. There's a bit of wheat crispness that follows and breaks up the very sweet profile quite nicely. Coriander spice and pronounced sweet orange flavours merge with a soft, semi-tea-like/herbal hop flavour (somewhat zesty from the orange). There's also a slight burnt honey flavour that flows along the palate through the entire tasting process. Finishes rather clean, given all of goings on in your mouth. Make no mistake, this is also an alcoholic beer.

Notes: I had this back in 5/00 in Belgian, and it was outstanding then. To have it now is even more so as I have the time to properly enjoy this brew. Too treasure it and bring back a memory. It's perhaps one of the most interesting, complex and enjoyable brews that I have ever had. Absolutely lovely. Brewed with water, natural honey, bitter orange, coriander, wheat, malted barley, Hallertau and Styrian hops.

It's also a tribute to the robust ales of the Barbarians. Adding a measure of honey and wheat to their barley gave it a new flavour and sparkle ... this type of drink became known as "the Warrior's Reward."

More User Reviews:
Photo of kaimcm
3.6/5  rDev -8.2%
look: 3.5 | smell: 3.5 | taste: 3.5 | feel: 3.5 | overall: 4

bottle courtesy of Sean, thanks, poured into an Ommegang goblet. best by some code I dont care to decifer.

A: deep golden body, clear as a spring day with very little head. a few bubble risers here and there, no lace. in a pint glass id mistake it for a clean lager easy.

S: sugar up front, sweet candied fruit, oranges, peaches, some alcohol and spice. honey.

T/M: medium body, rich up front, sugar first, then a tea like herbal and slightly tannic quality, followed closely by the candied fruit in the nose, honey. like fruit roll up of sorts. almost processed, sticky sweet fruit. very reminiscent of something id eat as a kid. something you'd find stuck under a chair. fruit evolves as the finish dries. a bit of spice here and there, some softness from the wheat on the palate as well. body is a little simple, as there seems to be too big a rift between the sugar and the apparent alcohol.

D: pretty good. an interesting beer, as long as you are in the mood for something on the sweet side. the 8% goes down without much fuss.

Photo of generallee
4.42/5  rDev +12.8%
look: 4 | smell: 4.5 | taste: 4.5 | feel: 4 | overall: 4.5

Presentation: It was poured from a brown 11.2oz bottle into a tulip glass. The label has a "Best Before" date.

Appearance: It has tarnished golden color with a cloudy complexion. On top I got a two finger tall, light fluffy head. This head slowly settles to a wispy thin layer with a clingy ring at the edge of the glass. This leaves some lace rings at the top of the glass and a few spots on the way down.

Smell: I get a very inviting nose full of sweet malts spiced with coriander, citrus orange peel and spicy herbal/floral hops.

Taste: It starts with a touch of spice and a touch of wheat malt. Bready malt and yeast notes move in with some honey like sweetness and a touch of bitter orange peel. This then leads into a mild herbal/spicy hop finish mixed with balanced malt sweetness. On the palate it has a medium to full smooth mouth feel with soft carbonation.

Notes: Overall Barbar (honey ale) is a very tasty and complex ale. It is definitely worth a try.

Photo of Doomcifer
3.87/5  rDev -1.3%
look: 4 | smell: 4.5 | taste: 3.5 | feel: 3.5 | overall: 4

Pours a hazy, bright golden color with a nice, fluffy, white head that reatains great. The aroma came flying up during the pour. Smells of apples, bubble gum, fruity, bananas, coriander, citrus notes. Fantastic nose!!! The flavor is also reminiscent of apples, citrus notes, spices ala coriander, banana, hops in the finish. Very juicy but comes across very thin. Mouthfeel is light, very carbonated, and crisp. Pretty drinkable. Not bad at all.

Photo of Billolick
4.03/5  rDev +2.8%
look: 4.5 | smell: 4 | taste: 4 | feel: 4 | overall: 4

Typical teeny 11.2 ounce Belgian offering, Pours darkish golden, clear, under a nice looking tiny bubble film and leave some great, fine, striated and wispy lacing. The nose is of some honey, and ripe fruits. Pleasant enough creation, peppery spicing, bright yeasty notes, some sweetness picked up late, balanced by dry and, again peppery notes. Nice. Worth a try.

Photo of MisterDeeds
3.77/5  rDev -3.8%
look: 3 | smell: 3.5 | taste: 4 | feel: 3.5 | overall: 4

I can definitely taste the honey, but it isn't overpowering. Sweet aftertaste is a kind of citrus. No strong bite or aftertaste that usually comes along with stronger beers either. I'd say that I could drink these all day long, but at 8%, I probably wouldn't get very far. Perfect beer for someone like me who is trying to make the jump from mainstream to more interesting styles.

Photo of WVbeergeek
3.2/5  rDev -18.4%
look: 3.5 | smell: 3.5 | taste: 3 | feel: 3.5 | overall: 3

Appears a honey golden semi clouded hue with effervescent bubbles streaming up to form a bright white head even fine Belgian style lacing. Aromatics mild cat pee funkiness, coriander spiciness with soft honey sweetness. Mild citrus peel with perfumey herbal hop accents, the smell works for me. Flavor brings upfront honey sweetness balanced with spicy coriander/citrus peel combo pale biscuit malt sweetness with light herbal grassy hops in the finish. I'm not crazy about honey beers but this one wasn't cloying in anyway pretty smooth and straight forward witbier, honey infused hybrid of a Belgian blonde ale. Mouthfeel is light to medium bodied with effervescent bubbly carbonation tickles the palate but flows nicely. Drinkability is decent not a session beer, but I'm glad I gave it a shot although in the future I know compared to some of my favorite Belgians I probaby won't return to this one in the near future.

Photo of rastaman
3.5/5  rDev -10.7%
look: 3.5 | smell: 3.5 | taste: 3.5 | feel: 3.5 | overall: 3.5

Not as sweet as i was expecting. Sweet honey start, slightly peppery bitterness in the finish, medium bodied, herbal hoppy flavour in the finish, flavours didn't quite blend, but i thought it was OK.

Photo of rhoadsrage
3.6/5  rDev -8.2%
look: 4 | smell: 4 | taste: 3.5 | feel: 4 | overall: 3

20110910 stamped on bottle
(Served in a tulip glass)

A- This beer has a slightly hazy deep copper body with a spongy light beige head that last.

S- The flinty wheat dough aroma is soft with some orange blossoms and coriander finish. There is a slight mustard seed aroma in the finish as the beer opens.

T- The bright juicy orange peel has a dry spice bitterness that is softer in the finish. There is a soft sweetness in the finish. As the beer opens there is a cough syrup medicinal quality to the orange zest and coriander flavors.

M- This beer has a medium mouthfeel with a tight fizz and no alcohol heat noticed.

O- The big intense orange flavor is a bit to intense and it hides some of the malt and yeast flavors. It takes on a slight jolly rancher intensity with the coriander also dominating aswell. They are some nice flavors just need to turn them down a bit, or bring up some malt flavors to balance them.

Photo of biboergosum
3.89/5  rDev -0.8%
look: 4.25 | smell: 4 | taste: 3.75 | feel: 3.75 | overall: 4

330ml bottle, part of the '1/2 Meter of Beer' mixed-pack from this brewery now available in Alberta.

This beer pours a clear, medium golden amber colour, with three fat fingers of puffy, frothy, and somewhat creamy off-white head, which leaves some broad, continental drift lace around the glass as things lazily sink away.

It smells of musty field honey, gritty and grainy pale malt, a touch of caramel/toffee sweetness, warm, and indistinct tropical fruit, yeast, a bit of black pepper, and earthy, leafy hops. The taste is dry honeyed crackers, bready pale malt, a floral candied character, one rather akin to the flossy sort, white grape juice concentrate, muddled earthy spices, still understated leafy, weedy hops, and a rising, but respectful enough metallic booze astringency.

The bubbles are pretty well integrated, and manifest as a subtle edginess throughout, the body a steady medium weight, and smooth in the most basic sense, i.e. one does not sense the lack of it. It finishes off-dry, natch, the honey still pulling a certain diva routine, persisting among some near-equally heady maltiness, and the burgeoning sweetness of that bristling 16-proof booze.

Being from Canada, the very idea of honey ale does not inspire a whole lot of hope on my beer radar when I am presented with an example of such. Leave it to some old-world brewing goodness to break me out of that bit of reverie - this one performs said charitable act with aplomb. Honey? Yes, up the wazoo - but moderated, by grain, yeast, hop, and yes, alcohol alike, to provide us with a crazily workable, and drinkable end result.

Photo of NJpadreFan
3.53/5  rDev -9.9%
look: 4 | smell: 3.5 | taste: 3.5 | feel: 3.5 | overall: 3.5

Barbar- Honey Ale

A- Bright clear yellow with a thick heavy lacing head.
S- Sweet white sugar and honey.
T- Thick sweet honey with scoops of sugar and a light touch of dried fruits; plum and cherry poke through.
M- Very sweet with a fruity dry finish.

Overall- Not bad, very honey sweet with a slight boozy touch.

Photo of Sammy
3.48/5  rDev -11.2%
look: 3.5 | smell: 3 | taste: 3.5 | feel: 3.5 | overall: 4

Bottle at Chancey Smith. Decent drinking Belgian pale. Unexceptional other than some orange in flavour, honey in the secondary. Golden yellow coloured body with some head, lots of lace. High carbonation. Neutral aromas, perhaps the honey absorbs it.Easy mouthfeel, the smoothness from the honey overrides the carbonation. Nice summer Belgian.

Photo of CanuckRover
3.95/5  rDev +0.8%
look: 3.5 | smell: 3.5 | taste: 4 | feel: 4 | overall: 4.5

Pours a honey (sorry) brown with a nice, white, but relatively short head. Loads of visible carbonation.

Sweet caramel malt with complimenting honey on the nose.

Sweetness right up front from both the honey and malt. A little bit of tartness through the middle and nice flavourful coriander. Orange zest gives noticeable bitterness in the tail. Very nice grassy hops in the finish with a nice amount of bitterness, which stays on the tongue for a good while.

This is a really well constructed brew. Flavours play off eachother treally well giving it a surprising drinkability given the big alcohol content.

Photo of hreb
3.88/5  rDev -1%
look: 3.5 | smell: 3 | taste: 4 | feel: 4.5 | overall: 4.5

Walked into my local microbrew bottle shop with the intention to buy a couple (ok, 4) beers purely based on their names/labels. Barbãr? BAR BAR BARBAR BAR BAR!

330 ml bottle dated "Best before: L20120616". Cooled and served in a tapered pint glass. Beer pours crystal clear pale gold with a thick white head.

Aroma is faintly yeasty while flavor is subtly sweet. Low level of fine carbonation. The label extols bitter orange and coriander, and of course honey. But the spicing subdued, and mostly evidenced by a dry orange peel flavor in the back of the mouth. The honey contributes sweetness, not just a dry 8% ABV gravity. And wheat contributes a light grainy body. I don't taste the coriander at all, and while I love coriander beers like the original Paper City Summer Haze, I can imagine it overpowering this beer.

Overall this is more Belgan Blonde (almost forgot to mention there is just enough funk here) than either Bier de Miel or Saison. Think a more interesting Leffe. Very tasty.

Photo of sfprint
4.33/5  rDev +10.5%
look: 2.5 | smell: 4.5 | taste: 4.5 | feel: 4 | overall: 4.5

A: a dull honey, with barely any rising carbonation with a half finger of head
S: sweet and beautifully fruity.
T: Not like other honey beers, the honey isn't so apparent. Not nearly as intense as other Belgian strong ales but it has a weaker version of the light strong ale flavor. But it's sweeter and fruityier. It's really excellent.
M: Perfect medium sting, light to medium body
O: A very special, unique beer. Unusual but quite appealing fruitiness.

Photo of cjgator3
3.43/5  rDev -12.5%
look: 4 | smell: 3.5 | taste: 3.5 | feel: 3.5 | overall: 3

11.2oz bottle poured into a pint glass. Pours a golden yellow color with a large white head. The aroma is sweet with honey and coriander and malted wheat. The taste is can be a little too alcoholic with wheat and honey. Overall, this is a pretty interesting brew but the drinkability is affected because the alcohol comes out a little too much.

Photo of ordybill
5/5  rDev +27.6%
look: 5 | smell: 5 | taste: 5 | feel: 5 | overall: 5

Poured from a 330 ML bottle into a pint glass.
Aroma- Has a great honey smell (go figure) along with malt and caramel.
Appearance- This is a golden amber color with a thick off-white head.
Taste- Fantastic taste of honey and malt. World class flavor in my book.
Palate- A medium bodied beer with moderate carbonation
Overall- World Class, that sums it up. It is a "must try" beer.

Photo of BrewViking
4.47/5  rDev +14%
look: 4 | smell: 4.5 | taste: 4.5 | feel: 4.5 | overall: 4.5

In the glass it's a light-brown color with a fairly large off-white head. The honey comes through in the smell and taste; it's like the best kind of blonde or white, but with a bit more flavor packed in than usual. There is almost no bitterness. Highly carbonated.

I strongly recommend Barbar.

Photo of Filosoof
4.53/5  rDev +15.6%
look: 5 | smell: 4.5 | taste: 4.5 | feel: 4.5 | overall: 4.5

Some years ago I drank this beer, and it didn't impresse me much.

Last year I took it again and found out what I missed. Ofcourse this beer is sweet, but the herbs, honey and flowers and nice soft hops make it a beer to stay.

L: just great; golden looks;
S: mjummy, could this last forever, herbs, flowers, soft hops, creamy notes;
T: the tast is round, someone could say it lacks bitterishness, okay because of that it stays a 4,5;
M: very, very drinkable, nice carbo;
O: really my style, blond not too heavy, an underestimated star....can I have another one?

Photo of russpowell
3.59/5  rDev -8.4%
look: 5 | smell: 3.5 | taste: 3.5 | feel: 3.5 | overall: 3.5

Enjoying this in a Barbar mug!

Pours honey colored with 2 fingers+ of fantastic fluffy pearl white head. Insane lacing & head retention

S: Fruitty with grassy hops, plus candi sugar

T: Herbal hops, dryness & much apricot, along some warming booze up front. Much dryness, a touch of lemon, apricots, figs, boozey persimmons & a touch of cardboard as this warms. Finishes boozey with much dryness, figgy & leafy hops

MF: Medium bodied, with soft carbonation, balances pretty good once warm

Drinks alright had this on tap in Germany at a beer fest & it was better. An interesting take on the style that may have suffered just a bit during travel. If I ever drink it again, I will let it warm WAY up

Photo of windigo32
3.65/5  rDev -6.9%
look: 3.5 | smell: 3.5 | taste: 4 | feel: 3 | overall: 3.5

A: Pours a nice golden brown with a finger of head. Retention could be better.

S: Smell is nice. Slight alcohol smell, honey, and spice.

T: Definate honey taste and slight backing of alcohol.

M: Feel is good, its not overly carbonated and isnt overly heavy either.

D: Goes down nicely. I could have had more of this one.

Photo of beerthulhu
3.58/5  rDev -8.7%
look: 4 | smell: 3.5 | taste: 3.5 | feel: 4 | overall: 3.5

A: Poured a dark straw-gold with a 1 finger bone white head that quickly fell to a slight creamy layering.

S: bananas, honey, candi-sugar and oranges.

T: sweet and spicy with cloves, bananas and a peppery touch. Spicy hops, oranges and honeybread add to the complexity.

M: creamy, spicy and very smooth and viscose from the honey with a high carbonation state.

D: A tad sweet but has a well hidden abv behind the sweetness. Good for a try if anything.

Photo of emerge077
4.15/5  rDev +5.9%
look: 4 | smell: 4 | taste: 4 | feel: 4.5 | overall: 4.5

Pours an amber yellow tone with high clarity. Lots of fizzy champagne streams of carbonation. Bottle has a somewhat goofy "kokopelli" motif.

Smells crisp, like mild hops, with a bubblegum yeast note. Earthy coriander is present in the taste, and later comes out as the glass warms up. Light bitterness seems more attributed to the Styrian and Hallertau hops (per label) than the orange peel citrus also listed on the label. Reminds me of a Wit without the wheat. Slight honey sweetness.

Very easy drinking, similar in that respect to Duvel. Deceptive abv, and it's not easy to sip...more of a quaffer. Would be a nice sessioner in a 750mL serving.

Photo of Phyl21ca
3.1/5  rDev -20.9%
look: 3 | smell: 3 | taste: 3 | feel: 4 | overall: 3

Bottled under license by the Cheval Blanc in Montreal. Light golden ale witha medium head that did not disapear too quickly. The honey taste is very discreet. I could recognize the usual taste of malt from the Cheval Blanc. Enjoyable but not exceptionnal

Photo of TexIndy
4.42/5  rDev +12.8%
look: 4 | smell: 4.5 | taste: 4.5 | feel: 4 | overall: 4.5

Poured from a 33cl bottle into my DT glass. Had a best by date of Jan 09. It was a clear golden color with slight alcohol shimmer. It had a big white head that dissipated into a collar. Good carb with some lacing. The aroma was awesome. Spicy from the coriander balanced perfectly with the orange peel and honey. The taste was also incredible. Starts off sweet from the honey then the spices kick in to be followed up with a smooth sweet again finish. I find most beers with honey to be overpoweringly sweet and therefore pretty bad but this one gets it right. The honey should be a nice accent like here and not the dominant flavor. Mouthfeel was good but had just a tad too much carb. It distracted you from the great flavor. Overall, a really great beer that I highly recommend. Glad to see this one hit the Texas market and look forward to many more. (4.5, RR, T, Y)

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Barbãr (Belgian Honey Ale) from Brasserie Lefèbvre SA
88 out of 100 based on 338 ratings.