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St. Sebastiaan Grande Reserve - Brouwerij Sterkens N.V.

Not Rated.
St. Sebastiaan Grande ReserveSt. Sebastiaan Grande Reserve

Displayed for educational use only; do not reuse.
BA SCORE
87
very good

135 Ratings
THE BROS
-
no score

(send 'em beer!)
Ratings: 135
Reviews: 96
rAvg: 3.87
pDev: 15.25%
Wants: 5
Gots: 6 | FT: 0
Brewed by:
Brouwerij Sterkens N.V. visit their website
Belgium

Style | ABV
Belgian Strong Pale Ale |  10.00% ABV

Availability: Rotating

Notes/Commercial Description:
No notes at this time.

(Beer added by: kbub6f on 12-20-2001)
Beer: Ratings & Reviews
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Ratings: 135 | Reviews: 96 | Display Reviews Only:
Reviews by ruckus232:
Photo of ruckus232
3.75/5  rDev -3.1%

More User Reviews:
Photo of oberon
3.55/5  rDev -8.3%
look: 3.5 | smell: 3.5 | taste: 3.5 | feel: 4 | overall: 3.5

Pours a deep golden with chunks and floaties swirling about with a big fluffy head that leaves a nice amount of lace,yeasty,spicey aromas with some green apple in there but it is pretty light for a big beer.Spicey and yeasty up front with some underlying tropical fruit,finishes pretty sweet with the alcohol flavor slowly kreeping up as it warms.Not one of the best Belgian strong pale ales I have had but still a decent brew none the less.

Photo of RoyalT
4.33/5  rDev +11.9%
look: 4 | smell: 4 | taste: 4.5 | feel: 4 | overall: 4.5

Appearance – Orangish-brown body with a nice head that laced the glass.

Smell – There’s a nice, light, spicy fruit aroma from this one. The melons, peaches, oranges, and apricots are touched off with a bit of coriander and cinnamon. The (very) lightly toasted malt backbone is present as well, but this is all about the fruit.

Taste – This is big flavor. The multitude of spices are out in force, deeply soaked in the light fruits from the nose along with cranberry and apple juice. The malt fades a bit at the tongue.

Mouthfeel – This is lightly carbonated and medium-bodied. The alcohol is there, but comes out more like a light, fruity mixed drink that’s been spiced with white rum.

Drinkability – This one is big on the melons and (especially) peaches, similar to its “Golden” cousin, which makes it go down smooth.

Update – I first rated this in 2003. Oh, Lawdy, have I been a BA that long? Anyway, here we are four years later and it tastes almost exactly the same. If nothing else we have to award points for consistency. Nice job, Sterkens!

Photo of Billolick
4.25/5  rDev +9.8%
look: 4.5 | smell: 4 | taste: 4.5 | feel: 4 | overall: 4

Style points go out for the classy bottle that this one comes in. Pours a hazy light golden with a slight green apple tint. Leaves tons of fine wispy lacing and sheeting. Nose is a soft sweet, fruity spicy blend. Soft mouthfeel, notes of melon, honey, pepper, alcohol evident. Tasty, strong, sharp and crisp. Lovely creation in brewing. get some of this stuff and enjoy.

Photo of ADR
4.43/5  rDev +14.5%
look: 4 | smell: 4.5 | taste: 4.5 | feel: 5 | overall: 4

Just slightly hazy light yellow-amber, yellowish head that's mostly skim. Yeasty aroma, with some dried and deep fruit smells. Full body, impression is similar to a Doppelbock in stickiness and heartiness. Sweet toffee, elements of dried citron, and a touch of diacetyl (really?). A little pepper and clove in the mid mouth, hops do a fine balancing job. There was a lot unexpected in the flavor profile but I loved it, satisfying brew here. Another cool crock, this one was a 16 oz swing top.

Photo of stereosforgeeks
2.93/5  rDev -24.3%
look: 3.5 | smell: 3 | taste: 3 | feel: 2 | overall: 3

Appearance: Orange/amber with a small foamy head. Decent lacing.

Smell: Candy sugar and bubblegum. Apples and some faint hops.

Taste: Malty and sweet apples. Some mild hops to balance out the sweetness.

Mouthfeel: Nothing really going on here. Seems rather flat.

Drinkability: Easy to drink, but nothing really stands out.

"Grand Reserve"? Not to sure that it means much here. And what's the deal with "Top Fermented Abbey Ale"? Seems like the marketing department went tautological.

Photo of cokes
4/5  rDev +3.4%
look: 4 | smell: 4 | taste: 4 | feel: 4 | overall: 4

Auburn-infused golden hued with a large bubbled head that wastes itself away in a matter of minutes.
Sugarcane, ginger, honeyed apricots and sweet melons on the nose.
The taste progresses through distinct stages. Flows through the mouth with a honey-drenched cantaloupe sensation immediately. Spicing invades. Peppery and savory. Fruit returns via lightly scorched pineapples. Spicing appears again, but more intense. Still light herbal, leafy and peppery, but it wipes the mouth clean of any sweetness. Continuing this wet-dry / sweet-bitter cycle, raw sugar begins to develops, coupling with something that hints at orange juice. However, the hopping does not allow it to come to fruition, as it sweeps down, and rinses the palate clean. Almost out of spite, a light honeyed sensation develops post-swallow.
Alcohol is of little notice for a 10% brew, but shows up on occasion by way of vodka hues.
Meaty bodied, just shy of full with stunted carbonation.
The drying qualities are both a savior and a distraction. This one seems to be pulling in two different directions. The end result is tasty and very drinkable, but I have the impression that this could have been even more. I'm just not sure what.
Nice brew, regardless. Nice bottle too.

Photo of swamiswamu
4/5  rDev +3.4%
look: 4 | smell: 4 | taste: 4 | feel: 4 | overall: 4

Well, the bottle is quite simply bad ass. It comes in a heavy ceramic 16 oz bottle with a unneeded swing top. It pours a golden amber with a mild head. The aroma has hint of honey and booze. At 10% it is awfully mild and drinkable. Really it kind of tastes like an amped up pilsner with a hint of candi sugar. This one isn't worth seeking out; but if you impulse buy it because of the bottle you will not be disappointed.

Photo of Doppelbockulus
3/5  rDev -22.5%

Photo of russpowell
4.18/5  rDev +8%
look: 2 | smell: 4 | taste: 4.5 | feel: 3.5 | overall: 4.5

Retired?? Oh well this seems to be trend with my & Belgian beers lately. Date code of 15/15/11

Pours bronze/amber with 1+ finger of off white head. Hazed up up a little a the end, probably sediment. Zero head retention & lacing

S: Perfumy hops, pineapple, honey

T: Dryness, lemons & grapefruit & some apple skin up front. Once this warms I get dryness, dates, figs, honey & more citric hops. Finishes dry, with lemony, pineapple & date notes, plus boozey warmth

MF: Slick, with stickiness at the very end, with moderate carbonation & medium body

Drinks really easy for the ABV & style. A pretty good example of the style, albeit a little fruittier than, say Duvel. Shame this is retired. I'm not sure how well this would hold up four years from now though

Photo of trackstar1043
4.22/5  rDev +9%
look: 4 | smell: 4 | taste: 4.5 | feel: 4 | overall: 4

A - Pours a beautiful hazy golden orange with 2 in of off white rocky head and extremely sticky lacing leaving visiable rings after each great drink.

S - A strong aroma fo wheat, bitter hops, sweet carmel and a citrus fruits.

T - Similar to the nose, with a great balance of bitterness and malty sweetness.

M - Med bodied with lively carbonation and a clean refreshing finish.

D - Very easy to drink and great for a warm summer night.

Photo of dgallina
3.43/5  rDev -11.4%
look: 3 | smell: 3 | taste: 3.5 | feel: 3 | overall: 4

No freshness date. Pours a clear golden-amber with small white head and light lacing. Smells strongly of grain & malts, some sweet fruits, and spicy alcohol. Flavor begins with sweet grainy malts and develops into very powerful solvent-like alcohols and slight spicing. Slight carbonation; feels fairly light in the mouth for the strength.

Easy to drink considering the ABV, but overall a brutish, unsubtle, beast of a strong pale ale. Perhaps my sample was mishandled, but this is not something I'll be returning to when there are *far* better examples out there.

Photo of BKotch
3.7/5  rDev -4.4%
look: 3 | smell: 3.5 | taste: 4 | feel: 3.5 | overall: 3.5

Presented in a 16-ounce crock with a bottle cap, not a cork, and a wired stopper. Poured a clear orangey-gold with broadly dispersed bubbles but virtually no head. The nose and palate are fruity and sweet, reminding me of peaches and pears. There is a slight bit of dryness to balance the sweetness -- just a bit, mind you. The mouth feel was decidedly syrupy. Also very pricey at $7.20 for 16 ounces.

Photo of scootny
4.28/5  rDev +10.6%
look: 4 | smell: 4 | taste: 4.5 | feel: 4.5 | overall: 4

From a case I bought last year. Best before 2011. Ceramic resealable bottle suitable for homebrewing. No problem there only six left. This beer has cellared beautifully. A clear golden amber fluid that produces a large creamy head. Though it fades quickly it leaves good lacing. Some bubbling going on. Subsequent pours add yeast and cloudiness and better head retention.

Smell is honey, grape and apples. Light Belgian yeast funkiness. Clean malt sweetness.

Taste is just smooth. Honeyed malt and candy sugar. Sweet white grapes and apples. Yeast adds a bit of nuttiness. Finish is more smooth tastes. A bit short of crisp it is still dry. Hops are super mild. Clean with a light green apple sourness. Sweet rolls linger in the mouth. Alcohol is just peaking around the corners from time to time, never draws attention to itself.

Feel is cream and velvet. Delightful

Way to easy to drink a couple of these.

I gave some away and traded others. Now I'm holding on to the rest for a special time in a few years. Maybe I can find another case. If you can get some of this stuff grab it. Just a very good sneaky strong Belgian pale ale.

Photo of emerge077
2.88/5  rDev -25.6%
look: 3.5 | smell: 3 | taste: 3 | feel: 2.5 | overall: 2.5

Hazy orange pour, yeast particles, minimal head. Smells artificially sweet, some musty grain.

Sweet with some tartness upfront, yeast and candi sugar seem to be the main component to this. Vague fruit that doesn't really have a physical comparison. Odd vegetal flavors barely mask the unpleasant booziness. Drying finish due to the ABV.

Most likely past it's prime, but reviewed since I won't see it around again.
Vintage bottle, located on a dusty shelf in the Chicagoland area.

Photo of Fusion7777
4.3/5  rDev +11.1%

Photo of Phyl21ca
3/5  rDev -22.5%
look: 3 | smell: 3 | taste: 3 | feel: 3 | overall: 3

Bottle: Poured a clear golden color ale with a medium size foamy head with good retention and minimal lacing. Aroma consists of sweet Belgian style malt with some fuse alcohol also noticeable. Taste is also somewhat one-dimensional with some discernable alcohol and some overly sweet Belgian style malt. I thought it was lacing some ester or some yeast character too be truly engaging. Not bad but not something I would go out of my way to try again.

Photo of CRJMellor
3.95/5  rDev +2.1%
look: 4 | smell: 4 | taste: 4 | feel: 3.5 | overall: 4

Poura light copper with gold highlights. Small white head vanishes quickly but leaves lots of thick, sticky lace on the side of the glass.
Aroma of dark fruits, yeast, wheat bread, banana, apple and cloves.
Flavors of sweet and citrus fruits, medium malt, some yeast and some clove notes. Virtually no bitterness and finish has a little spicy alcohol kick.
Mouthfeel doesn't have much liveliness as I would expect for the style and finish is somewhat shorter than I would like for the style. Very drinkable beer though.

Photo of theopholis
3.23/5  rDev -16.5%
look: 3.5 | smell: 3.5 | taste: 3 | feel: 4 | overall: 3

Appearance - Fairly clear golden/amber. Looks like apple cider. Almost no head. No lacing.

Smell - Smell is quite subdued. What I do get is floral, malty, slightly fruity and a hint of spiciness.

Taste - Interesting. Light fruits up front (yellow apple, pear) with light spices. Flavor is quite subdued. Has a very interesting after-taste that I can't describe at all. There was no hiss when I opened the bottle, so it may be slightly oxidized.

Mouthfeel - Low carbonation. Medium mouthfeel. Very slick.

D - Pleasant, but not outstanding.

Photo of thekanna
4.43/5  rDev +14.5%
look: 4 | smell: 4.5 | taste: 4.5 | feel: 4 | overall: 4.5

A: Pours a strong gold color which settles into a nice orange-amber. About one finger of white head.

S: Belgian yeasts, spices; some faint apples, pears, and citrus fruits; somewhat like the smell of Westmalle Tripel. Floral aromas further liven it up and give it a sense of freshness.

T: Belgian yeasts with some strong peppercorns, coriander, citrus fruits, and pears. Candi sugar is present which gives it a nice sweetness, and spice definitely rounds it out.

M: Nice carbonated juiciness.

D: This is frankly one of the beer Belgian Strong Pale Ales I've had in a while. They seemed to have nailed down everything I love about the style perfectly.

Photo of daythree16
3.98/5  rDev +2.8%
look: 4.5 | smell: 3.5 | taste: 4 | feel: 3.5 | overall: 4.5

Really heavy 16 oz. ceramic bottle. Poured into a tulip glass. Nice honey golden color with that big fluffy head that comes with the style.

Smell is a little spicy and wine-like. Fruity esters play a big part in the aroma. Taste is the sweetness of honey and grapes. It's also a bit peppery/spicy.

Mouthfeel is very crisp and medium-bodied. Overall, the flavors are very subdued, and it's not nearly as tasty as others of the style I've had. However, it's decent for sure, and drinkability is very high.

Photo of HopStoopidKev0907
3.72/5  rDev -3.9%

Photo of OregonGrown7
4/5  rDev +3.4%

Photo of sammy806
4.5/5  rDev +16.3%

Photo of Gusler
3.93/5  rDev +1.6%
look: 3.5 | smell: 4 | taste: 4 | feel: 3.5 | overall: 4

The pour a clear deep amber, the head is mediorce, the lace spare, the color off white. Nose is malt, citrus tones, light hints of bubble gum. Front is malt, sweet, the top is medium, the finish is acerbic, dry, the 10% ABV, is felt in the "Tummy" and the long lasting alcohol bitter aftertaste. "Works for me!", as I like my beers pungent and brawny. Ranks #504 on my current 1000 beer master list.

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St. Sebastiaan Grande Reserve from Brouwerij Sterkens N.V.
87 out of 100 based on 135 ratings.