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Holy Mackerel Special Golden Ale - Holy Mackerel Brewing

Not Rated.
Holy Mackerel Special Golden AleHoly Mackerel Special Golden Ale

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221 Ratings

(view ratings)
Ratings: 221
Reviews: 140
rAvg: 3.31
pDev: 18.13%
Wants: 0
Gots: 14 | FT: 0
Brewed by:
Holy Mackerel Brewing visit their website
Florida, United States

Style | ABV
Belgian Strong Pale Ale |  8.50% ABV

Availability: Year-round

Notes & Commercial Description:
Beer added by: Jason on 06-02-2008

No notes at this time.
View: Beers (6) | Events
Beer: Ratings & Reviews
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Ratings: 221 | Reviews: 140 | Display Reviews Only:
Photo of SalMineo
3.75/5  rDev +13.3%

Photo of dmorgan310
3.75/5  rDev +13.3%

Photo of Lukass
3.75/5  rDev +13.3%

Photo of Beermaine
3.75/5  rDev +13.3%

Photo of cottonkoozie
3.74/5  rDev +13%
look: 3 | smell: 4 | taste: 3.5 | feel: 4 | overall: 4

A - Deep honey golden color, some slight cloudiness. Not much head or lacing though.

S - Strong fruit and coriander smells, also smell the alcohol.

T - Much like the smell. I taste pretty much all fruit, and somewhat of a fermented boozy fruit taste. Unlike any beer i have tasted. Almost reminds me of wine in a way.

M - Nice feel, doesn't look very carbonated in appearance, but has a very full carbonated feel.

D - Pretty drinkable, especially considering the high alcohol content.

At first sip, I didn't think I was going to like this, but it grow on you quickly. A pretty good beer, and very unique. Worth a try definitely.

Photo of mooseisloose
3.72/5  rDev +12.4%
look: 3 | smell: 3.5 | taste: 4 | feel: 4 | overall: 3.5

First sampled at the local beer vending establishment, where the brewmeister was showing his wares. Tasty, so I picked some up for enjoyment and further review. Smell is yeasty with a zesty hoppiness on top of a light malt base. Pours to a hearty golden colour with not much head. Mouthfeel is very thick and heavy like a beer of the style warrants. Carbonation is present and accounted for but not overly done. Flavor is sweet then then tart with a good sweet but zesty hop taste that finishes mildly bitter and slightly dry. Definite excellent use of local flavors, orange and lime. Yeast taste is present throughout. A good HG Belgian for the hot climate. A little pricy but hey, with the AC it's a 2 for 1.

Photo of tone77
3.7/5  rDev +11.8%
look: 4 | smell: 4 | taste: 3.5 | feel: 4 | overall: 3.5

Poured from a brown 12 oz. bottle. Has a cloudy golden color with a 1/2 inch head. Smell is of fruits and spices. Taste also has some fruits coming through, alcohol is present, a touch of spices. Feels full bodied in the mouth and has good drinkability. Overall this is a good quality beer.

Photo of jettjon
3.7/5  rDev +11.8%
look: 3 | smell: 3 | taste: 4 | feel: 4 | overall: 4

Picked this one up at a local pub in Florida that is pretty good about getting new stuff in.

From a 12 oz bottle marked "2007," into a pint glass (unfortunately). This one would have benefited from some decent, non-frosty glassware, but oh well. Hard pour yields a 1-finger white head that fades quickly leaving a thin ring and no real lacing. Hazy golden color with no carbonation. Average appearance at best. No real nose either; serving suggestion is 45 degrees, but the beer's character doesn't come out until it warms quite a bit. Just a touch of sweet malt on the nose and a vague, sweet fruity aroma. Taste is straight up strong pale ale, instantly recognizable and actually rather well done. Up to this point, I was not terribly impressed, but as the beer warms, the flavor and mouthfeel come into their own. Firm alcohol warmth (8.5%) asserts up front, followed by a good, middle-of-the-road hop burn, balanced nicely against a malt backbone that follows it down to a rich, malty finish. Notes of citrus/grapefruit and hints of coriander. Mouth is unassuming yet definitely present in the form of a semi-creamy, lightly and crisply carbonated slick liquid. Drinkability is good; the taste and mouth really bring things together, though the ABV precludes having too many too fast.

Overall: A good interpretation of the style, but not exemplary. Best served warmer than the suggested 45 degrees. Definitely worth a try, if you can find one.

Photo of pmlondrigan
3.7/5  rDev +11.8%
look: 3 | smell: 3 | taste: 4 | feel: 4 | overall: 4

Pretty blah for a belgian golden ale. Right color, but lame head, no real puffy carbonation, no lacing and no retention. Aroma is lack luster, probably a result of the poor carb. The right aromas are there, just not in the right strength. Flavor saves this beer. Nice yeasty showcase, some good esters, banana and clove, ginger, spices, clean finish. Just a little biscuity. Good feel, dry and clean as it should be. Yeah its drinkable. Plenty happy to try this beer from Florida.

Photo of alpinebryant
3.69/5  rDev +11.5%
look: 3 | smell: 4 | taste: 3.5 | feel: 3.5 | overall: 4

Poured a dark marigold orange yellow with a healthy white head on top that later subsided to a ring around the edges.

Smell of belgian yeast, pepper, banana
Taste of banana , doughy belgian yeast, pepper, and pale and pilsener malts.
Quite a drinkable golden ale for 8.5 with medium carbonation and a medium mouthfeel.

Photo of drabmuh
3.67/5  rDev +10.9%
look: 3 | smell: 3.5 | taste: 4 | feel: 3.5 | overall: 3.5

I had a bottle of Holy Mackerel last night as part of my farewell FL tour of beer. Served in a Holy Mackeral glass (wine glass), the beer is light in color, cloudy, with a minimal head and steady carbonation. No lacing on the glass to speak of. The aroma is interesting, a hint of yeast, possibly nuts. The flavor is almost slightly yeasty or nutty. Easy to drink, but overall unremarkable (ironic that I am remarking on it in that case).

Photo of portia99
3.65/5  rDev +10.3%
look: 4 | smell: 4 | taste: 3.5 | feel: 3.5 | overall: 3.5

12oz bottle (2009) poured into a Russian River stemmed Belgian glass.

A - Pours a hazy, yeasty pale golden orange color...no head (not too surprising given the 8.5% alcohol here), just a thin white collar and a few wispy swirls on the surface of the liquid.

S - Spicy on the nose - cinnamon, coriander, some cloves, Belgian yeast character for sure, maybe some wintergreen, a touch of black pepper. Definitely Belgian in character...very solid.

T - Good hits of alcohol, spices - cloves and cinnamon notably...tons of Belgian yeast character and a bit phenolic. Good underlying malt character - sweet and bready...hop bitterness is good - crisp but not overpowering. Can't quite place it, but there is some kind of off flavor on the swallow...maybe a bit of oxidation, but not sure either....only a 2009, but don't know when in the year it came out...

M - Thin to medium in body...carbonation is medium too. Lots of spiciness that stays behind after the swallow, unfortunately along with the strange (oxidized) off taste.

D - Good smelling and still good, but to a lesser degree tasting strong Belgian ale...enjoyable overall, but I am spending most of my time trying to identify the off flavor more specifically. Alcohol is on the high side at 8.5% but not at all hot, but definitely noticeablei in the flavor profile.

Photo of oberon
3.63/5  rDev +9.7%
look: 4 | smell: 3.5 | taste: 3.5 | feel: 3.5 | overall: 4

Its been awhile since I had some Florida wares at least 3-4 years,this Belgian goldan style poured into an oversized wine glass a dull light to medium golden with a well defined 1/2 finger white head atop leaving spotty lace as it settled.A little phenolic bubble gum quality in the nose along with some juicy fruit with a tinge of smoke again from the phenols,pretty basic flavors quite fruity like overripe pineapple and mango phenols produce a bit of clove and ginger-like spice but its held in check pretty well.Basic but not bad really the alcohol is very well hidden,I wouldnt go out of the way to get it but its decent.

Photo of jwhawkins81
3.63/5  rDev +9.7%
look: 4 | smell: 3.5 | taste: 4 | feel: 4.5 | overall: 2.5

Aroma - Malty sweetness with a Belgian spice

Appearance - Light pale orange with a good amount of carbonation.

Taste - Light with a definite Belgian yeast influence. The taste has some fruit like qualities I did enjoy.

Notes - Good mouthfeel. I've had this beer three times now and every time I really like it at the beginning but by the end I'm tired of the spice. So that's why drinkability takes a hit.

Photo of krkearney
3.62/5  rDev +9.4%
look: 3.5 | smell: 4 | taste: 3.5 | feel: 3.5 | overall: 3.5

12oz bottle, 2008 vintage. Pours golden with a slight orange hue, capped with a fairly large off-white head. Aroma is fairly sweet with notes of tropical fruit, honey, banana and yeast. Flavor is sweet as well, with citrus and tropical fruit. White pepper and spice round out the palate and stick around for a fairly long finish. Drinkable, but a bit too sweet for me.

Photo of aubuc1
3.62/5  rDev +9.4%
look: 3.5 | smell: 4 | taste: 3.5 | feel: 3.5 | overall: 3.5

12 oz bottle poured in to a goblet.

Pours a orange/brown with a quickly disapating head.

Smells of sweet malt with banana and yeast.

Tastes of bread, banana and clove. The alcohol is present.

Nice mouthfeel, but nothing special.

Pretty sweet to be too drinkable, but a recommendable FL beer.

Photo of jspruit
3.62/5  rDev +9.4%
look: 3 | smell: 3.5 | taste: 3.5 | feel: 4 | overall: 4

Poured from a 12 oz. bottle I received as a gift from family in Florida. Plenty of carbonation in the pour with lots of little bubbles but didnt amount too a large head-a small white one really.

Smells of a fruity ale-a bit like you would expect from a Belgian, but not quite as full.

Initial taste is a bit of a Belgian with some wheat hints. There are some sweet hints too and it is a bit malty. 8.5% ABV comes through a bit strong. Hops come through when the beer lowers in temp a bit and it is a nice drink.

Drinkability is nice, but because it does come off a bit strong, I wouldnt select this as a session beer. I would definitely have another if given the opportunity-I like the idea of local Florida made beer.

Photo of SLeffler27
3.62/5  rDev +9.4%
look: 3.5 | smell: 4 | taste: 3.5 | feel: 3.5 | overall: 3.5

The slight, white froth quickly appears and diminishes over a clear orange beer that becomes hazy as the bottom yeast enters the Dogfish Head snifter. A viscous film coats upon swirling while a glow from within backlights minimal yeast in suspension.

This one is sweet, similar to a Reisling white wine. One can clearly pick out apples, crisp cider, honey and assorted spices.

Sweetness dominates with just enough bitterness to keep it drinkable. Crisp apple juice with some spices linger throughout. Overall, there is a light, sour tang in the finish. This one warms to bring out more wine-like flavors as well as peach and apricot.

The texture is full and supple, reminiscent of fresh peach juice. The carbonation is light while the alcohol is as expected.

I would consider this a dessert beer and, if one were to use a wide interpretation of style, I could understand it as a Strong Pale Ale. Nevertheless, it was enjoyable.

The label states 2009. If this is true, my bottle had three years of age. The above ratings are clearly my personal taste, not by style.

Photo of drunkmonk
3.6/5  rDev +8.8%
look: 3.5 | smell: 3.5 | taste: 3.5 | feel: 3.5 | overall: 4

Cloudy golden bronze, with thin creamy head. Thin sheet of lace. Spicy corriander and some bannanna, tofee and some earthy hops. Flavor follows suite with some sweet malt and corriander and spices. No hop presence. Finishes a bit on the sweet side. Alchohol is very well intergrated. Light and crisp, maybe a little to light, with ample carbonation. Overall an easy drinker, but a bit on the sweeter side. Not bad

Thanks to Paulthebeerguru for the throw in.

Photo of scottyshades
3.59/5  rDev +8.5%
look: 3 | smell: 4 | taste: 3.5 | feel: 3.5 | overall: 3.5

A: Pours a slightly hazy but transparent golden color that produces a small head that doesn't hold for too long. Lacing is not too great either. Lots of bubbles rising from the bottom, so I assume this will be pretty damn carbonated.

S: Strong Belgian yeast notes; candy, bubblegum, spearmint, and come spices that smell like coriander and cloves.

T: Very similar to the nose, not very complex at all, in fact its pretty one dimensional. Very yeasty, bubblegum, spearmint, cloves, and some candy sweetness.

MF/D: As the pour suggested, a little over carbonated, light in body, smooth and long spicy finish.

Photo of hoppymeal
3.59/5  rDev +8.5%
look: 3 | smell: 4 | taste: 3.5 | feel: 3.5 | overall: 3.5

Pours a very light copper to gold in color, perfectly clear, with a small white head that fades quickly to a faint covering. Smell is a strong lemon and honey sweetness that shows a bit of alcohol, also a more subtle banana bread sweetness behind this. Taste follows suit with a nice bready sweetness in the background blending with the lemon and honey. Mouthfeel is medium and slightly cloying sweetness, small amount of hoppy dryness in the finish. A good beer, a little thick for my preferences within the style, has hints of crispness and dryness that try to cut through. Look forward to seeing how a little age affects this one.

Photo of Brent
3.58/5  rDev +8.2%
look: 4 | smell: 3.5 | taste: 3.5 | feel: 4 | overall: 3.5

Wasn't sure what I was getting with this one based on the name and label, but the Belgian strong pale character was unmistakable. Alcohol was up front and lent a bit of a rough edge to an otherwise reasonably smooth beer. Some candy sugar notes toward the end, wiht a little powdery finish. Not great, but not bad, either.

Photo of Durge
3.58/5  rDev +8.2%
look: 4 | smell: 3.5 | taste: 3.5 | feel: 4 | overall: 3.5

Another bottle dug out from behind the bar at The Celebration Town Tavern in Celebration, Florida, this brew shows a golden iced tea color, hazy with a solid white foam cap and good lacing. The aroma is coriander wheat and bayberry. Alright if a bit weak. The flavor brings big clove and vanilla banana with a sweet lemon-like touch. It’s near full bodied, with fine and sturdy carbonation. Medium drinkability and very decent for an American version of the style.

Photo of nickfl
3.56/5  rDev +7.6%
look: 4.5 | smell: 3.5 | taste: 3.5 | feel: 2.5 | overall: 4

A - Light gold color, good clarity, somewhat small head for the style.

S- sweet, malty, honey like aroma. Some nice yeasty esters as it warms up.

T - Malty, grainy flavor. A little bit of hops. Definitely some belgian golden flavor here, but the sweetness is distracting. Sweet syrupy finish.

M - Thick and sweet. Way too heavy for the style, not quite enough carbonation to lift it off the palate.

D - Overall not bad. It is too thick and sweet for the style and a sad substitute for Duvel flavor wise as well. An ok effort, about the same level of quality as the rest of FBC's beers.... at least they are trying something new.

Photo of womencantsail
3.55/5  rDev +7.3%
look: 3.5 | smell: 3.5 | taste: 3.5 | feel: 4 | overall: 3.5

Thanks to Mike for sending me this one awhile back.

A: The beer pours a clear yellow/golden color with a finger's worth of white foam.

S: Yeast is the first thing I smell followed by bread. There are some nice fruit notes of oranges and bananas. Some slight spice notes of clove are present too.

T: Sweet and fruity is the best way to describe this one. Lots of banana, pear, oranges, and apples. I get a fair amount of yeast, but not as much as the nose showed. Definitely some bread and candi sugar there to provide more sweetness.

M: The body is medium with a moderate to high carbonation.

D: Not bad, but not terribly good either. I probably wouldn't care to have this again.

Holy Mackerel Special Golden Ale from Holy Mackerel Brewing
76 out of 100 based on 221 ratings.