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Belgica - Great Divide Brewing Company

BelgicaBelgica

Displayed for educational use only; do not reuse.
BA SCORE
83
good

390 Ratings
THE BROS
-
no score

(send 'em beer!)
Ratings: 390
Reviews: 308
rAvg: 3.67
pDev: 14.44%


Brewed by:
Great Divide Brewing Company visit their website
Colorado, United States

Style | ABV
Belgian IPA |  7.20% ABV

Availability: Summer

Notes/Commercial Description:
This beer is retired; no longer brewed.

No notes at this time.

(Beer added by: Bitterbill on 04-28-2009)
Beer: Ratings & Reviews
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Ratings: 390 | Reviews: 308 | Show All Ratings:
Photo of Sammy
Sammy

Ontario (Canada)

3.65/5  rDev -0.5%
look: 3.5 | smell: 4 | taste: 3.5 | feel: 4 | overall: 3.5

On tap at Hopcat. Yeast in aroma. Light yellow body with foaming head, and you an see the carbonation bubbles, with spidery lacing following. Above-average mouthfeel. Dry and very hoppy. Missing balance of good malting, a problem I often attribute to this brewery.

Serving type: on-tap

08-09-2009 18:19:00 | More by Sammy
Photo of BuckeyeNation
BuckeyeNation

Iowa

4.6/5  rDev +25.3%
look: 4.5 | smell: 4.5 | taste: 4.5 | feel: 4.5 | overall: 5

Burnished gold with a generous splash of orange juice. Despite fitting the entire beer into the pint glass on one smooth pour, there's only a barely perceptible yeasty haziness. No matter, the absolutely gorgeous cap of alablaster colored cream more than makes up for any slight visual shortcomings. Finely stenciled stripes of lace look amazing as well.

This offering is a Belgian yeast-added version of Titan IPA, which is a fantastic beer to use as a launching point. It smells like there's more Euro hoppiness in this brew, which makes sense. It's primarily lemony, fruit peel musky and spicy. Right on the money for the style.

Belgica Belgian Style India Pale Ale is the real deal. The hoppiness is almost up there with most good American IPAs... and if I had been able to drink it fresh rather than 5 months along, it might have been. Sorry, but the yeast can't be the only difference between this stuff and Titan.

Belgian pilsner malt plays a secondary role (or is that tertiary?) in the flavor profile. That said, it contributes a sugary sweetness that is gangbusters in combination with the rest of the ingredients. Hops and yeast are the stars of the show. If this delicious and delectable ale was released in corked-and-caged 750s with 'brewed in Belgium' on the label, it would get much more love and respect.

Top notes include candided lemon peel, sweet grasses, warm clove, cardamom and white pepper. Whatever yeast strain the brewers came up with is a certified killer-diller. I would hate to think they filtered out some of that flavor, but clear beer doesn't lie. Since plenty of it survived, no complaints here.

When there's only one measly mouthful left to assess mouthfeel, you know that drinkability is stratospheric. The beer feels Belgianesque, which is the highest compliment that I can pay. It's silky smooth and has a sparkly sort of energy that is... well... perfect.

I feel like a broken record sometimes when extolling the virtues of Great Divide. To cut to the chase, this is a world-class craft brewery and Belgica is a world-class Belgian-style IPA. Highly recommended.

Serving type: bottle

10-10-2009 14:34:02 | More by BuckeyeNation
Photo of brentk56
brentk56

North Carolina

4/5  rDev +9%
look: 4 | smell: 4 | taste: 4 | feel: 4 | overall: 4

Appearance: Pours a clear golden color with a rocky meringue head that leaves a few shards of lace

Smell: Bready malt, with a yeasty phenols adding a peppery, herbal character; a rather grassy aspect as well

Taste: Opens with the bready character of a pilsner, but the spicy Belgian yeast quickly takes center stage, adding white pepper, jasmine and stone fruit to the mix; by mid-palate, the hops add an earthy bitterness; the aftertaste is herbacious and grassy, with undertones of sweet Belgian malts

Mouthfeel: Medium body with moderate, but prickly, carbonation

Drinkability: I kept going back and forth on this beer, disliking it at first, then warming to it but finally winding up somewhere in the middle - I think it is the Germanic elements of bread and grass that keep throwing me off

Serving type: bottle

04-04-2011 23:38:38 | More by brentk56
Photo of BEERchitect
BEERchitect

Kentucky

4.05/5  rDev +10.4%
look: 4 | smell: 4 | taste: 4 | feel: 4.5 | overall: 4

For whatever reason... maybe it was the nonchalant lable, maybe it was the lack of publicity: but I somewhat dismissed the credibility of this new beer. I should not have done that.

The beer barely begins to flow into the glass before strong corriander and floral aromas flow as well. Further examination finds heavy confection sweetness, citrusy orange peel, perfume, light grasses, and a pungent-fruity character as only Belgian yeasts can.

Nice appearance as well with a bright straw color that hinges on golden hues. A light sheet of foam covers the beer but never wows me, but laces and retains well enough to garner respect.

Flavors are even more bright, deep, and vibrant than the aroma suggests. Under-rippened berries, orange peel, grapefruit, nectar-like sweetness, white pepper, corriander, ginger, cumin... (the list of fruity esters and peppery phenols can go on and on) ...all this wrapped in a cotton candy-like confectionate taste. Super clean and crisp flavors could show more Belgian-y character.

In true Trappist Tripel fashion, the beer is very dry and spicy for its thin sweetness, making it very drinkable and sessionable. Spices and bitterness weave in and out of the well-attenuated pilsner malts for a varying complexity and layers upon layers of depth. The beer has great drinkability for its sharp bitterness.

The beer is very fresh and vibrant in all its profile. Very Witbier-ish with the heavy aromatic and flavor additions of corriander and orange zest. Consistent from scent to finish, this beer is challenging, juicy, and inviting throughout. Great brew Great Divide!

Serving type: bottle

07-16-2009 03:36:48 | More by BEERchitect
Photo of Thorpe429
Thorpe429

Illinois

3.38/5  rDev -7.9%
look: 3.5 | smell: 4 | taste: 3 | feel: 3.5 | overall: 3.5

Reviewed from notes.

Pours a hazy golden color with a short white head and just a bit of lacing on the way down. The nose brings some light citrus hops along with a bit of a floral character. There is some nice pepper and yeast character. The taste is really overcome by a bit of pepper and the yeast. Not terribly complex and a bit one-dimensional. Pepper and a bit of bitterness in the feel. Drinkability is okay, but not one of the better BIPAs that I've come across.

Serving type: on-tap

11-13-2010 16:48:34 | More by Thorpe429
Photo of oberon
oberon

North Carolina

3.65/5  rDev -0.5%
look: 3.5 | smell: 3.5 | taste: 3.5 | feel: 4 | overall: 4

Not a style that I venture into very often because usually I am not a fan of Belgian yeast and or the hop profiles of them.Poured into a standard pint glass a honey tinged light golden with a very thin white wich surprised me a little.Spicy yeast aromas with citrus oil as well,flavors are spicy and lightly phenolic up front with a good shot of citrus in the finish.I liked this more than many others of the style I have, had but still a little heavy on the Belgian yeast flavors.

Serving type: bottle

11-13-2010 12:43:31 | More by oberon
Photo of TMoney2591
TMoney2591

Illinois

3.4/5  rDev -7.4%
look: 4 | smell: 3.5 | taste: 3 | feel: 3.5 | overall: 4

Served in a Chimay goblet.

A small froth comprises the head immediately following the pour; this dies down fairly quickly, leaving a bright yellow haze, something like freshly-sqeezed lemonade with the pulp left in. A deep sniff over the surface elicits shocks of citrus (appropriate, given the color) and pine. Though the expected hops are not obvious in the nose, they burst forth on the tongue, ravishing every taste bud they wash over. To me, the hops nearly overpower here, with the rest of the flavors forced into spectator roles. Not that this is unexpected, as this is an IPA after all, but it is somewhat off-putting in the taste department. Nonetheless, the crisp finish and light body allows for a very drinkable beer.

Serving type: bottle

02-01-2010 00:55:08 | More by TMoney2591
Photo of TheManiacalOne
TheManiacalOne

Rhode Island

3.53/5  rDev -3.8%
look: 4 | smell: 3.5 | taste: 3.5 | feel: 3.5 | overall: 3.5

Poured from a 12oz bottle into a US tumbler pint glass.

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

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

T: The taste starts out sweet with flavors of citrus, spices and bananas. Then there's a Belgian yeast breadiness and a hearty malt character that comes in along with a strong but not over-powering hops presence. The after-taste is sweet.

M: Smooth and crisp, medium body, medium carbonation, finish is slightly sticky.

D: Tasty, goes down easily, not too filling, decent kick, decent representation of style, not one of the better Belgian IPA's that I've, there are several others I would choose first.

Serving type: bottle

10-15-2009 01:50:31 | More by TheManiacalOne
Photo of russpowell
russpowell

Oklahoma

3.48/5  rDev -5.2%
look: 5 | smell: 3.5 | taste: 3.5 | feel: 3.5 | overall: 3

Pours an effervescent honey color with 1+ fingers of fluffy ivory head. Effervescence persists throughout the whole 12 ounces; superior lacing & good head retention

S: Apricot juice, dirt, & banana

T: Follows the nose, along with dryness & green banana & cloves upfront. Lemons, grapefruit & slight breadyness fight through as this warms along with more dryness & mushroomy taste, plus a light honey flavor. Finishes dry with much green banana, honey dryness & grapefruit

MF: Medium bodied, semi-sticky, soft carbonation

ABV is well hidden, but this one doesn't rate drinking more than one or two at a sitting, flavors aren't melding well at all, just a bit too funky for me. Duvel is my benchmark for this style, this isn't quite scracthing the same itch. Despite the close ratings, I'd rather have Stone Soup from NG all in all....

Serving type: bottle

07-29-2009 04:24:13 | More by russpowell
Photo of WesWes
WesWes

New York

3.55/5  rDev -3.3%
look: 3.5 | smell: 3.5 | taste: 3.5 | feel: 4 | overall: 3.5

The beer pours a pale gold color with a thick frothy white head that slowly fades to lacing. The aroma is decent. It has a mild hop nose along with mostly pale malts and some farmhouse funk. There's lots of citrus character present. The taste is decent as well. It's light and easy drinking with lots of yeast character. The hop profile doesn't excite me much. It's like a hopped up saison. The mouthfeel is fine. It is a low/medium bodied beer with adequate carbonation. This is a pretty good beer, but I was expecting something a little better.

Serving type: bottle

02-17-2010 02:42:58 | More by WesWes
Photo of drabmuh
drabmuh

Maryland

3.4/5  rDev -7.4%
look: 3.5 | smell: 3.5 | taste: 3.5 | feel: 3.5 | overall: 3

This beer is so harsh I may have a bad bottle. I'll give it another chance as soon ad possible but for now....

Beer is yellow with a mild haze. Small head a little lacing, and low carbonation.

Aroma is grainy and mildly hoppy.

Beer is light in body and has a dry finish. It's strongly bitter. I'm already bumping my scores up. It gets better the more I sample. Mild sweet mild hop flavor good bitterness. It's ok, I'm thinking it's just a B- beer in general.

Serving type: bottle

09-18-2010 22:47:14 | More by drabmuh
Photo of zeff80
zeff80

Missouri

4.2/5  rDev +14.4%
look: 3.5 | smell: 4 | taste: 4.5 | feel: 4 | overall: 4

A - Poured out a clear, golden-orange color with a thick, two-finger head of khaki foam. It left some thin rings of lace.

S - It smelled of yeast, spice and sweet floral notes. There is a touch of caramel in the nose.

T - This has a spicy, yeasty flavor with just enough bitter hops. It has a nice burnt toast caramel flavor, too.

M - It was crisp and sharp with a dry finish. A medium-bodied IPA.

D - Yet another great brew from Great Divide!

Serving type: bottle

08-02-2009 12:59:15 | More by zeff80
Photo of Knapp85
Knapp85

Pennsylvania

3.58/5  rDev -2.5%
look: 4 | smell: 3.5 | taste: 3.5 | feel: 4 | overall: 3.5

this Belgian IPA pours out as a bright yellow color with foamy white head. The lacing doesn't do too much here. The smell is a little floral and the Belgian yeast is prominent. The mouthfeel is pretty smooth, a light carbonation. Overall I've had better Belgian Ipa's but this is a decent brew.

Serving type: bottle

05-30-2011 19:20:07 | More by Knapp85
Photo of jwc215
jwc215

Wisconsin

3.5/5  rDev -4.6%
look: 3.5 | smell: 3.5 | taste: 3.5 | feel: 3.5 | overall: 3.5

Bottled on May 27, 2009:

Pours clouded yellow with a thin white head that descends to a thin cover. Some lacing sticks.

The smell is of bubblegum, some banana, and lemon/citrus.

The taste is sweet - bubblegummy banana-ish with a touch of lemon/orange tartness and some herbal dryness in the finish.

It has a creamy, light body.

Despite the sweetness with touch of tart, a late bitterness follows. It's interesting, though doesn't quite mesh together somehow. Alcohol is well-covered. A decent attempt, has a "Beglian-esque" character with a late hop touch, though it's not quite up to par, IMO, of others of the sttyle I've had, from Belgium or America.

Serving type: bottle

09-04-2009 16:47:19 | More by jwc215
Photo of WVbeergeek
WVbeergeek

Ohio

3.63/5  rDev -1.1%
look: 4 | smell: 4 | taste: 3.5 | feel: 3.5 | overall: 3.5

Poured an amazingly pale golden crystal clear hue with a bright white thick foaming head. Aroma had a large amount of Belgian yeast notes workin' with a spicy clove fruity character. In addition I could smell some seriou green raw herbal and citrus hops. Flavor was a clashing with the yeast strain and those American hops, but this one is the closest US versions I've had to Houblen Chouffe, really grassy citrus hop bitterness throughout each sip. Mouthfeel was medium bodied with a dry bitter finish. Drinkability overall was solid but not one that I will be searching for in number, a nice every once in a while kinda brew.

Serving type: bottle

07-12-2009 21:01:11 | More by WVbeergeek
Photo of Gavage
Gavage

New Jersey

3.63/5  rDev -1.1%
look: 3 | smell: 4 | taste: 3.5 | feel: 4 | overall: 3.5

Appearance: clear golden yellow in color with a thin 1/4" head.

Smell: yeast spiciness is pleasant on the nose.

Taste: yeast, grass, fruit sweetness, and some mild breadiness. Bitterness is nicely balancing. Hint of alcohol comes through too.

Mouthfeel: medium bodied. Crisp from start to finish. Long aftertaste as the yeast flavors linger in the mouth.

Drinkability: decent beer but there are better Belgian IPAs out there.

Serving type: bottle

10-22-2009 19:25:51 | More by Gavage
Photo of smcolw
smcolw

Massachusetts

3.93/5  rDev +7.1%
look: 3.5 | smell: 4 | taste: 4 | feel: 3.5 | overall: 4

Quite clear (slight chill haze); Good initial head that settles into a single bubble layer. Leaves good streaky lace.

Attractive blend of floral hop, pale malts and a low level yeasty smell.

Very nice fusion of high hops and definitive Belgian yeast bite. Reminiscent of some of the home brews I made, which means there's plenty of yeast flavor on the tongue. Moderate body and a high carbonation level. This is a hop lovers Belgian.

Serving type: bottle

10-08-2009 22:51:12 | More by smcolw
Photo of Halcyondays
Halcyondays

California

4.05/5  rDev +10.4%
look: 4 | smell: 4 | taste: 4 | feel: 4.5 | overall: 4

12 oz. bottle,

A: Pours a clear gold with a medium white head. Very good retention, with concentric lace.

S: Peppery yeast and grass/hay. Very much to style.

T: Very yeast oriented and earthy, with a bit of mushroom and spice in the finish. Grassy, earthy hops. The flavour is a bit hard to describe, but it is well made and satisfying.

M: Soft carbonation, medium-bodied, easy going on the palate.

D: Real solid beer. Belgian IPA's a tough style to pull off, but Great Divide has made a real solid effort which is real inexpensive for the style, so a double bonus.

Serving type: bottle

01-20-2011 05:49:25 | More by Halcyondays
Photo of mactrail
mactrail

California

3.95/5  rDev +7.6%
look: 4 | smell: 4 | taste: 4 | feel: 3.5 | overall: 4

Tasty golden ale with Belgian notes.

Yellow-gold in the Duvel tulip glass. Nice head and lacing lasts well. Decent carbonation in the mouth. Crisp and sprightly at first sip. Yeasty, fruity nose. Just the right touch of malty sweetness but bitterness is right behind. Sharp flavors with a touch of grapefruit. Thin body but lots of flavor without the sticky malt bomb. Touch of pine and bitterness like salad greens.

Overall, I think this is a very pleasing beer with lots of complexity and great drinkability. I like this style a lot, for having good Belgian flavors without overdoing the hops.

Serving type: bottle

05-08-2011 04:18:27 | More by mactrail
Photo of Rifugium
Rifugium

Pennsylvania

3.6/5  rDev -1.9%
look: 3.5 | smell: 4 | taste: 3.5 | feel: 3.5 | overall: 3.5

First had: on tap at the Pour House, Westmont, NJ

Poured a slightly hazy straw-yellow with a nice white head that receded fairly quickly. Aroma was of bread, biscuits, yeasts...BREAD. Breadiest aroma ever, and it actually fascinated me. Nothing else but bread and yeast in the nose. The taste wasn't as extreme as that, but there was yeasty breadiness up front with earthy tones following, a little grassiness, and just a tad of sugar and spice in the background. Light mouthfeel, smooth and easily drinkable. Nice.

Serving type: on-tap

05-03-2011 03:33:56 | More by Rifugium
Photo of Billolick
Billolick

New York

4/5  rDev +9%
look: 4 | smell: 4 | taste: 4 | feel: 4 | overall: 4

On tap at ACBF, 2 samples, at a quiet table, reviewed from notes.

Pours light and yellowy, near white head and leaves moderate lace. The nose is of Belgianesque yeast and a slight note of bubble gum. Dry, fairly crisp and refreshing. More yeast notes, bubble gum again, citric and peppery and dry in the finish. Hopefully this pleasant offering will make its way east in bottles on a regular basis.

Serving type: on-tap

07-01-2009 14:30:48 | More by Billolick
Photo of lacqueredmouse
lacqueredmouse

Australia

4.18/5  rDev +13.9%
look: 3.5 | smell: 4.5 | taste: 4 | feel: 4 | overall: 4.5

Pours a very light golden yellow - quite clear, and to my mind, slightly too pale, with a firm, but filmy head of white bubbles. Good lacing on the glass as the head subsides. Looks pretty decent, if not exceptional.

The nose is a robust conglomerate of round Belgian yeast and sharp, straight hops. The Belgian character is almost visible - with huge slightly funky round notes of tomato and creamed corn, and the hops are quite European in character. None of those fruity, sharp or citric American varieties. Comes across as a big Belgian Pale with a hugely beefed up aroma. I love it.

Yeah, the palate is very much in the same vein. Very robust Belgian yeast characters, and light-bodied grainy sweetness, before a slightly phenolic and robust, but not tongue-slicingly bitter hop character pervades the back. Finish is quite dry and light-bodied. It really feels like a Belgian Pale with the volume turned up - perhaps some of the characters slip into overdrive, but that's ok. This is what American brewing does.

Yeah, I liked this a lot. A really good interpretation of the style. As far as straight IPAs go, you're not going to find yourself with a ballistic hop-bomb, but it's got the raw, ragged and souped-up American edge to a classic European styled beer. Awesome.

Serving type: bottle

01-13-2010 11:15:20 | More by lacqueredmouse
Photo of Wasatch
Wasatch

Utah

4.33/5  rDev +18%
look: 4 | smell: 4 | taste: 4.5 | feel: 4 | overall: 4.5

Bottled On: 24 Apr 09

Pours a very nice clean/clear golden yellow color, nice carbonation, nice one-finger creamy white head, with some nice sticky lacing to follow. The nose is hoppy, with some slight malts, very slight yeast note, some citrus. The taste is very nice, hoppy, malty, slightly yeasty, woody, fruity, sweet, one damn complex brew for an Belgian IPA. Medium body, nice dry/bitter finish, not hot like other Belgian IPAs, very nicely done. Drinkable, a very tasty brew.

Serving type: bottle

08-16-2009 20:21:11 | More by Wasatch
Photo of corby112
corby112

Pennsylvania

3.33/5  rDev -9.3%
look: 4.5 | smell: 3 | taste: 3 | feel: 3.5 | overall: 4

Served on tap at Kraftwork.

Pours a dark golden straw yellow color with paler golden yellow hues when held to a light source and a 1.5 finger white head with excellent retetion, only slowly fading into a lasting ring that coats the glass with streaks and splotches of soapy lacing.

Slight earthy aroma with very faint earthy and citrus hop notes. There is a prominent estery light fruit character in the nose from the Belgian yeast. Hins of apple, pear and banana along with a slightly tart earthy funk and citrus fruit presence.

Clean, crisp and light bodied with only a slight earthy hop presence along with sweeet citrus and crisp light frut. Hints of apple and pear along with subtle earthy funk that was evident in the aroma. Subtle alcohol and not very hoppy. I was expected it to be q bit drier and bitter but the fruit notes are most prominent resulting in a Belgian golem ale that really shouldn't be classified as an IPA.

Serving type: on-tap

05-23-2010 22:01:50 | More by corby112
Photo of woodychandler
woodychandler

Pennsylvania

4.6/5  rDev +25.3%
look: 4 | smell: 4.5 | taste: 5 | feel: 4.5 | overall: 4

It poured two fingers' worth of eggnog-colored head with excellent retention. Its color was a deep-gold with NE-quality clarity and lots of CO2 bubbles. The nose had an interesting mix of saison yeast-like pepperiness with Cascade (?) hops, very citrusy. Mouthfeel was medium-to-full with all of the carbonation acting as a natural palate scrubber. The taste was bothj spicy and hoppy as if the "unique Belgian yeast strain" and the "generous amount of American and European hops" were battling for supremacy with neither getting the upper hand. The result, on the finish, was a dryness rivalling the zephyr winds blowing across the Sahara. Veddy dry. It was released in the spring, but I think that it would make a fine summer beer.

Serving type: bottle

07-31-2009 20:12:38 | More by woodychandler
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Belgica from Great Divide Brewing Company
83 out of 100 based on 390 ratings.