Gruut Belgian Amber Ale - Gentse Stadsbrouwerij

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Gruut Belgian Amber AleGruut Belgian Amber Ale

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53 Ratings
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Ratings: 53
Reviews: 33
rAvg: 3.53
pDev: 12.18%
Wants: 0
Gots: 4 | FT: 0
Brewed by:
Gentse Stadsbrouwerij visit their website

Style | ABV
Belgian Dark Ale |  6.60% ABV

Availability: Year-round

Notes & Commercial Description:
Beer added by: mltobin on 07-19-2008

No notes at this time.
Beer: Ratings & Reviews
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Ratings: 53 | Reviews: 33
Reviews by the Alström Bros:

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More User Reviews:
Photo of Gmann
3.36/5  rDev -4.8%
look: 4 | smell: 3 | taste: 3.5 | feel: 3 | overall: 3.5

Pours a slightly hazy amber color with a nice loose off-white head that left some nice lacing as it dissipated. The aroma is disappointing for a Belgian brew. It has a light lemony tea quality and that is about it. The taste is similar to the aroma. Tea like flavor with a hint of a burnt caramel malt, an light earthy hop bitterness and a touch of candi sugar. The feel is fairly light and crisp and very well carbonated; burns the tongue a bit. The brew finishes astringent and a touch bitter. Not really what I expected, a Belgian made brew that resembles an American style. Flavors are not bad but the carbonation is over the top.

Photo of beerthulhu
3.08/5  rDev -12.7%
look: 3 | smell: 2.5 | taste: 3.5 | feel: 3 | overall: 3

A: Poured a medium, hazy cranberry-amber with a firm 1 finger Styrofoam head that was beige in color, while displaying a fair retention rate before lapsing to a thin skim covering. A feverishly strong carbonation opens up, but soon drops after a minute or two to a moderate showing. The lacing was slight, and spongey in nature. Overall I really liked the coloring of this, which unfortunately was its only strong point.

S: extremely light and disappointing. Light musky fruit, plums and not much else to speak of.

T: The flavor was tart cranberries, very acidic with a touch of green apples. White grapes with a semi-sweet caramel backing are also noted. There is a soft touch of wildflowers with hints of fresh lemons. Overall I thought this was moderate but was expecting much more. Hints of curaco oranges rounds things out in an otherwise moderate flavor.

M: crisp from the vibrant carbonation with a slick texture with a light body. Acidic but ultimately only average.

D: Starts strong appearance wise but only goes down hill from there. Lackluster aroma, moderate flavor and disappointing mouthful makes this a one try only. Don't waste your money on a sixpack.

Photo of RuudJH
4.3/5  rDev +21.8%
look: 4 | smell: 4 | taste: 4.5 | feel: 4 | overall: 4.5

Checking all the brews from the Gentse (who, btw, have such a great mix of herbs they use, I was surprized to learn they don't use hops).
Amber classically brewed the english way: without sugar.. stated on the website (also claiming it's an english pale ale style).
With herbs.

Amber colour, beige head, nice carbonation.
Smell is roasty malts, some dark fruit, a bit of candy.
Taste is full flavoured bitterness. Spicy, herbal notes.
Dry finish.
Very interesting experience. Well balanced bitterness and malt, and it does have the characteristics of some english ales I've tried.

Good beer. Enjoyable.

Photo of Proteus93
3.58/5  rDev +1.4%
look: 4 | smell: 3.5 | taste: 3.5 | feel: 4 | overall: 3.5

A: Clean gold with a foamy white head. Fairly decent.

S: Milds malts, some candi sugar sweetness. A lighter, inoffensive aroma.

T + M + D: Fairly non-descript. toasty malts, sweetness... again, inoffensive. A medium body, sparkling carbonation, and fairly easy drinking. Rather straight forward.

Photo of BlackHaddock
3.7/5  rDev +4.8%
look: 3.5 | smell: 3.5 | taste: 4 | feel: 3.5 | overall: 3.5

33cl Bottle @ De Bierboom, Brugge on 4th July 2012.

Clear body with an amber hue: thin head of off-white bubbles.

Caramel and other malty aromas in the nose, some yeast hunts hidden at the back as well.

The taste was also malty caramel and on the semi-sweet side with the yeast esters not showing in the flavours within the mouth.

Medium bodied and rich enough to carry the sweetness without turning the beer into a sickly mess. My sweet tooth loved it (I even bought a bottle to bring home).

3.53/5  rDev 0%
look: 4 | smell: 3.5 | taste: 3.5 | feel: 3.5 | overall: 3.5

Commercial name in Spain: Gruit Amber
330ml bottle. Wine glass. Amber color & chill haze appearance. Yellowish foam creates a close crown showing fairly good retention. Crystal malt, candy & toffee aromas. Sweet malts, toffee & chocolate hues on the flavor profile. Light body. Moderate carbonation. Smooth palate. Spices & ripe fruit in the middle. Dry spicy finish rounded by sweet no-cloying aftertaste. Refreshing & easy drinkable. Smooth from the beginning & well balanced beer.

Photo of beerdrifter
4.2/5  rDev +19%
look: 4 | smell: 4 | taste: 4.5 | feel: 4 | overall: 4

Picked this up at my favorite beer store in Belgium, Dranken Geers. Clear copper-amber pour with a half finger head that quickly fades with minimal lacing. The nose is somewhat subdued, but very unique, as expected. Very herbal and flowery with hints of honey, cinnamon, caramel and butterscotch. The taste follows suit with a similar unique herbal character. Hints of honey, butterscotch, caramel, nutmeg, and some other flavors that I just can't describe. I'm a hop head, but I'm not missing the hops at all here. The uniqueness makes up for it. Reminds me very much of a winter warmer or Christmas beer. Mouthfeel is slightly chewy and syrupy but really smooth and drinkable with just a touch of bitterness on the finish. I've visited the brewery in Ghent and this holds up to the draft version. I'll be in Ghent this weekend and will definitely be picking up more of this!

Photo of FtownThrowDown
2.71/5  rDev -23.2%
look: 3.5 | smell: 2.5 | taste: 2.5 | feel: 3 | overall: 3

Bottle from Rivers Bend W&S.
Pours a light reddish brown with no head at all. Lots of carbonation racing up the glass. Smell is surprising. This smells a lot like a lager. Not even remotely close to a belgian ale. A very bitter, lager like taste. Can't get over the taste. This is a major disappointment.
Definitely don't be expecting a belgian if you buy this beer.

Photo of DrDemento456
3.3/5  rDev -6.5%
look: 4 | smell: 4 | taste: 3 | feel: 3 | overall: 3

A - Looks good for a Gruut a 1/2 inch of foamy opaque head. Clear deep amber brown in color.

S - Faint caramel and bready malts. Smells rather sweet.

T - Well it was sweet until it hits a block where the hops should be the spices can't seem to give it enough body to support a clean finish.

M - It's light and refreshing but eh...

Overall I guess I am not much of a fan of gruut beers. This one had promise but feel flat on the body and finish.

Photo of psuKinger
3.9/5  rDev +10.5%
look: 4 | smell: 4 | taste: 4 | feel: 4 | overall: 3.5

A rather expensive bottle purchased at my local bottle shop, the idea of an "American Amber/Red Ale" brewed in Belgium baffles me. I have no idea what to expect, here... I kind of like that.

Bottle poured into Petrus snifter glass, and clearly over-carbed, as carbonation immediately rose up out of the next within seconds of me popping the cap.

A: Hazy Orange color with lively carbonation and a large off-white 2-finger head that disippated quickly.

S: I pick up malt-sweetness and earth-tones in the nose, with a bit of yeasty presence as well.

T: Smooth mild bitterness at the start. Caramel sweetness on the back end dominates. Lively carbonation throughout. This beer starts smooth and a bit thin, and then the malts overwhelm on the finish with that caramel flavor I already mentioned.

Not an overly complex beer, but I have a feeling that I'm not going to grow tired of this as I work through the bottle.

M: Thin and bubbly initially, with a reasonable amount of malt-sweetness left behind after the swallow.

D: Drinks easily enough to merit a good score. If other options are available, I would choose to move on to something else after having one of these on any given night, but wouldn't hesitate to pick up another bottle next week if the price was right. A decent brew, for sure.

Photo of CHickman
3.18/5  rDev -9.9%
look: 3 | smell: 2.5 | taste: 3.5 | feel: 3 | overall: 3.5

Poured a reddish amber color with a tan creamy head and a light smell of malt, yeast and fruit.

Tastes sweet and of roasted malt with a mix of wheat, hops, sugar, spices, some fruits and herbs(??); nice warm complex flavors with the yeast and malt being the strongest tastes, and a medium body and carbonation. Overall a good beer, just not anything exceptional in the flavor department, especially for a Belgian product. It was quite drinkable and I enjoyed it, but I've come to expect a lot from Belgian products and this beer just seemed average...and average by global standards, not just Belgium.

Photo of joekfsu
2.7/5  rDev -23.5%
look: 3 | smell: 3 | taste: 2.5 | feel: 3 | overall: 2.5

11.2 oz bottle. Pours copper with a 1 cm off white head that is quickly diminishing. Aroma is sweet malt and yeast. Initial flavor is light and sweet, malty. The taste becomes more bland and has a very plain aftertaste. Moderate carbonation, light lacing, light body, and light on alcohol. Overall very boring and not worth the time or money.

Photo of crossovert
3.97/5  rDev +12.5%
look: 3.5 | smell: 4 | taste: 4 | feel: 4 | overall: 4

11.2 oz bottle. It is a gusher so beware.

It pours a dark brownish amber with a small off-white head.

The smell is fo dark fruits and dark bread. It is simple but nice.

The flavor is pretty typical. It is mostly comprised of dark fruits, some amber malt, and a hint of caramel.

I did not like the fact that it gushed, but it is a pretty solid brew otherwise.

Photo of robbyc1
3.75/5  rDev +6.2%
look: 4 | smell: 4 | taste: 3.5 | feel: 3.5 | overall: 4

A very Odd Notion, this one, a Belgian amber, sweetish with apricot fruitiness, notes of burnt caramel and woody/herbal notes. Very complex with some off-putting from the herbal side, maintains a balance that keeps it from being poorly made, and it is quite good and interesting, but I wouldn't call this an American Amber by any means, Gruut is a category is it not? One of the few examples and not a bad one.

Photo of redsonja
3/5  rDev -15%
look: 3 | smell: 3 | taste: 3 | feel: 3 | overall: 3

A; light brown the head is gone quik.

S; spices,caramel,candy suger.

T; hopbitter,spicy.

M; the taste is good but gone quik to bad.

O; for beers made with spices i dont taste it in al the beers. gruut was not only to spice the beers but to conserve it to but the spices are in all the beers not in the taste.

Photo of RblWthACoz
3.85/5  rDev +9.1%
look: 3.5 | smell: 3.5 | taste: 4 | feel: 4 | overall: 4

Pours a clear brown with a thin crème head. Nose is one-sided with mostly leafy caramelized sugars evident. Flavor is earthy and leafy with a noticed sweet tone. When I saw that it said Belgian Amber Ale on the label, I had low hopes, but this is ending up pretty decent really. There's a good enough balance of earthy tones and sweetness. Feel is fairly full on the carbonation and the liquid is well bodied. Overall this is an interesting brew. A Belgian Amber Ale? Sure. It definitely comes off as a hybrid of sorts with enough character to keep it interesting. I say it's worth a shot.

Photo of Slatetank
3.5/5  rDev -0.8%
look: 3.5 | smell: 3.5 | taste: 3.5 | feel: 3.5 | overall: 3.5

I purchased this ale at Shawan Liquors poured at cellar temp into my Ommegang goblet. It immediately started to spray all over the coffee table luckily not onto the laptop, but I lost about 1 oz before I poured unfortunately.

A - Bronze/medium amber hued w/ great clarity and a 3 finger whip cream head that rises out of the glass. The lace begins to cling immediately and the head falls to about 1/8th inch and is tightly beaded

S - A woody, green kind of hop aroma and a european yeast aroma not exactly classic belgian w/ a light malt aroma

M - The feel is almost dry, mildly hoppy med-high carbonation and spiced (yeast, hops)finish

T - The flavor starts sweet with gentle biscuit and pale malt flavor, the taste has a dry mineral crispness and the hops hav a noble hop herbal tinge and spicey note that blends well w/ the yeast and malt almost seemlessly. The alcohol hovers in the background and it finishes dry w/ a light bread crust note

D - A pretty tasty amber which was relatively easy to drink for a 6.6% ale. I give it a very good drinkability overall and it is simple which sometimes just hits the spot.

Photo of mltobin
4.2/5  rDev +19%
look: 4 | smell: 4 | taste: 4.5 | feel: 4 | overall: 4

Bought a 4 pack of the Gruut Belgian Amber Ale at a small wine and spirits store in Connecticut.

11.2 ounce bottle poured into Duvel glassware.
The appearance is a copper body with a thin head that quickly disappears.
The smell has caramel and hops presentd.
The taste is malty, roasted, with a flavor of peanuts as well.
The mouthfeel is nice, sweet and pleasant with a favorable aftertaste.
The drinkability is good, it is a slightly rich beer that would go very well with a burger and fries or a steak. I am glad I picked this up, and I think this is first time I added a beer that had not yet been reviewed before, nice.

Photo of EkimGram
2.88/5  rDev -18.4%
look: 4 | smell: 3.5 | taste: 2.5 | feel: 3 | overall: 2.5

Appearance: 11.2oz bottle poured into Duvel tulip. Bottle started to foam and spill once I opened it. Colour is a hazy brown. Finger-thick head fades to a thin film leaving a nice even lacing.

Smell: Tart, yeasty, and some dark fruits.

Taste: An odd mix of flavours. I get some dark fruits, some bitter hops, a touch of yeast, and a bit of spice. None of these flavours are very bold so the end result is a confused mash of weak, need-to-be-sought-after tastes.

Mouthfeel: Light-bodied with a generous amount of carbonation. Sticky.

Overall: Far from the best of this style. It is seriously lacking in flavour - not a particular taste per-say but a boldness or strength that one normally finds in a Belgian beer.

Photo of JoeyBeerBelly
4.15/5  rDev +17.6%
look: 4 | smell: 4 | taste: 4 | feel: 4.5 | overall: 4.5

11.2oz bottle served in a beer flute.

This beer gushed a bit when the bottle was opened but luckily I was quick with the pour which produced a hazed copper brew with a big beige head that thinned to a layer leaving trails of lacing.
The aroma is Belgian yeast and a sort of apricot/fig blend of fruit.
Taste is light and fruity with the yeast being subtle and a light bitterness on the finish.
Medium bodied with a crisp, refreshing feel.
Pretty darn easy to drink.

I got a single of this beer for $1.39 and it was well worth the price of admission.
I will be buying more.

Photo of corby112
3.03/5  rDev -14.2%
look: 3.5 | smell: 3 | taste: 3 | feel: 3 | overall: 3

Pours a dark yellowish-brown/ brown copper color with a foamy off-white head. Musky aroma that is dominated by clove spiciness. Slight chocolate malt presence. Flavor is once again dominated by cloves. A little bit of licorice, chocolate malt. Very carbonated with a spicy roastiness up front followed by a sweet malty center and dry finish.

Photo of rinhaak
3.97/5  rDev +12.5%
look: 3 | smell: 3.5 | taste: 4 | feel: 3.5 | overall: 5

Pours a light copper color with a full head. The head faded much faster than expected, and within a minute it was gone.

The nose has sweet malts, breadiness, and light hints of overripe plums.

Because of the complete absence of hops, the malts take control in the mouth. The beer is well balanced, though, in that I would never describe this as an overly "malty" beer. There is an almost caramely sweetness on the edge of the pallet that pairs with a slight bitterness (the gruut). It has a very nice malty finish, and is very drinkable.

Gent's only brewery, this is a rather unique spot: the brewer uses gruut instead of hops as the bittering agent, and the lack of hops is immediately noticeable. Though not off-putting, it can be a shocking absence for "hopheads."

This brewery is definitely worth visiting if you're in Gent, but not necessarily worth taking some home.

Photo of blakesell
3.82/5  rDev +8.2%
look: 3 | smell: 3.5 | taste: 4 | feel: 4 | overall: 4

Poured from the 11.2oz bottle into a Belgian styled goblet.

Appearance- Beer pours a light amber golden into the glass with a decent finger of head and lacing clinging just a bit to the sides of the glass. Carbonation on the top is ample and lingers for a while.

Smell- Smells much like an Oktoberfest, in fact, I just dumped a bad marzen before this and it smells very similar. This one has a bit more sweet caramelized malts. A bit of a rubbery yeasty scent on there as well hiding in the back. Hopefully that won't transfer over in the taste.

Taste- Very much like a good Oktoberfest. The flavor here makes up for that bad 22oz bottle I just had to dump before it that will remain nameless in this review. A light balanced hop character and a bit of sweetness providing a great balance. A little warming and strange with that Belgian yeast strain, but very drinkable nonetheless.

Mouthfeel- Smooth, lightly rubbery, estery, medium-high in carbonation, and medium bodied.

Drinkability- This would score higher without that yeasty weirdness, but this is still a solid and drinkable beer that I would drink another of if given the opportunity.

Photo of HomebrewPgh
2.65/5  rDev -24.9%
look: 4.5 | smell: 2 | taste: 2.5 | feel: 3 | overall: 3

Blah. This beer is a mess. Aroma was very weak. Smelled like stale ginger ale. Pour was absolutely beautiful. Deep rich amber with a 2 finger off white head. Taste was stale caramel and a hint of roasted malt. Very thin and watery. Carbonation left the beer halfway through and turned into a flat amber ale.

Photo of scruffwhor
3.01/5  rDev -14.7%
look: 2 | smell: 3.5 | taste: 3 | feel: 2.5 | overall: 3

Pours a three finger, pourous, spongey tan head. Not much stickage or retention, and no bubbling. Ok tarnished amber color. Toasted bread with a dash of cinnamon, cardomon, and nutmeg make up the spicey aroma. Toated sweet bread drizzled with a little caramel starts the taste off right. Then some chammomile and some fruit cake spices. The finish has a touch of tinny bandaids. Dry, malty, and spicey palate. But a little off on the finish and linger.

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Gruut Belgian Amber Ale from Gentse Stadsbrouwerij
81 out of 100 based on 53 ratings.