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Lips Of Faith - Grand Cru Abbey Ale - New Belgium Brewing

Not Rated.
Lips Of Faith - Grand Cru Abbey AleLips Of Faith - Grand Cru Abbey Ale

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

322 Ratings

(view ratings)
Ratings: 322
Reviews: 169
rAvg: 3.98
pDev: 11.06%
Wants: 36
Gots: 42 | FT: 3
Brewed by:
New Belgium Brewing visit their website
Colorado, United States

Style | ABV
Belgian Strong Dark Ale |  9.50% ABV

Availability: Fall

Notes/Commercial Description:
No notes at this time.

(Beer added by: BeerAdvocate on 05-11-2002)
Beer: Ratings & Reviews
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Ratings: 322 | Reviews: 169 | Display Reviews Only:
Photo of chugalug06
4.18/5  rDev +5%
look: 4.5 | smell: 5 | taste: 4 | feel: 3.5 | overall: 4

Ah, finally NB bottled (for retail) one of my favorite brews of all time...

A - A soapy head quickly develops in the brew head, quickly fading to a more foamy blend. Head is off-white, slightly tan. Brew is crystal clear Mahogany, typical (high class Belgian). Looks delicious, interesting circular lacing remains

S - Deep, dark, and robust. Roasty and sweet too. Smells slightly sweet with hints of wood. Scent is a deep Belgian. Smells very good.

T - A very mild "sugar bomb", not at all like it's predecessor. If you've ever had the previous "small batch" releases you too will notice this is very off from those flavors... Very heavy alcohol burn. I will be buying 6+ brews to sit on and watch age... I would imagine this brew with a year or two would mellow nicely. To give it a "4" right now is a bit of a stretch, but I'll still drop the 4.

M - Very dry and sweet. Heavily bodied with very high carbonation. Again, I'll let a few sit and see where it goes...

D - Yes, quite drinkable... But, it burns so you're able to let sit and relax...

Not at all like it's predecessors... Not sure if that's a good thing. Kind of disappointing for it being NB's first release of Abbey GC in "production". Bummer. Maybe in the next 1000 batches they'll find they're "old recipe". The old recipe was almost perfect "5" across the board... The current recipe is all over the board, needs to be honed in. Try it if you're able, a very good brew nonetheless.

Photo of rye726
3.78/5  rDev -5%
look: 4 | smell: 4 | taste: 3.5 | feel: 4 | overall: 4

Up for review is Abbey Grand Cru. Poured cold into a small wine glass. On tap at Backcountry Pizza in Nederland, CO. Pours a nice brown with a tan head. Nose has Belgian yest and sweet malts. Not alot of complexity in the taste. Decent beer, drinks well. Go get some, try it for yourself.

Photo of emmasdad
4.1/5  rDev +3%
look: 4 | smell: 4 | taste: 4 | feel: 4 | overall: 4.5

On my first trip to Denver, in October 2002, in between visiting my kids, looking for a place to live and attending GABF, I managed to find a bottle of this beer at a local shop. Poured a medium brown color, with a good off-white head. Aromas of green raisins, light brown sugar and Belgian yeast. Medium bodied and drinkable, with flavors of raisins, honey, bubble gum and spice. Very good, better than the regular version.

Photo of NWFLyer
4.13/5  rDev +3.8%
look: 4 | smell: 4 | taste: 4.5 | feel: 3 | overall: 4

New Belgium Abbey Grand Cru Batch 20,000 (2006) served on draught at Falling Rock Tap House, 1919 Blake Street, Denver, CO 80202. This is an excellent, and rare offering from New Belgium Brewing Co. This choice selection is an incomparable treat in an ocean of oft repeated styles of brew.
A- Light ruby color, with an ephemeral head.
S- Relatively insignificant aroma, consisting of sweet, aromatic scents.
T- As one would expect from an Abbey-Style Ale; smooth, robust, flavorful, yet not overwhelming.
M- Excellent. Each sip is exquisite, smooth, a minuete on the palate.
D- Outstanding. This Abbey- Style Ale is a treat to the senses. As it is in limited supply, enjoy, but do not over-indulge. Allow others to imbue it treasures.

Photo of olympuszymurgus
4.25/5  rDev +6.8%
look: 4.5 | smell: 4 | taste: 4.5 | feel: 4 | overall: 4

had this in a top hat at the eastside club and we argued over the color. seeming ruby, it was then pointed out by a third that there was too much ambient red. held to a fluorescent, it was beheld a translucent penny color. now, i've had some of the more recent delicious offerings of the new belgium in the nw, but this one is special. candy sugar and malt greet the nose and as the candied cane slides down the throat, you cannot help but engage in merriness and bawdy language. sticks around with its sugary business but the alcohol slowly washes it away. had to go for a second one.. glad to see new belgium bringing their A game national. or at least to the pac-nw.

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

Pint at Pizza Port Carlsbad last weekend for six dollars I believe, reviewed from notes, this was basically described to me as a double version of their Abbey brew which I had out of the bottle a few times now

A-Medium to dark brown with some red around the edges, 3/4 inch creamy light beige head that did not last, some retention and lacing
S-Belgian yeast, berries, banana, gum, caramel, brown and candied sugar, red apples, and zesty citrus
T-Apples, berries, and sugar at first, caramel and Belgian yeast in the middle, light alcohol and more berries in the finish, more fruit comes out as it warms, has a lot of sweetness after a while, needs some dryness for balance, nice alcohol twinge in the aftertaste
M-Sweet, fruity, and warming mouthfeel, medium to full bodied, on lighter side for carbonation, taste lingers
D-One glass was good enough, it was a bit heavy and filling, alcohol is not completely hidden, can be sweet at times too, can taste its strength

Not a bad beer from New Belgium and a little different than what I am used to from them, hope to see it again when I am Denver in a few weeks, look forward to sampling this again, recommended

Photo of klewis
3.4/5  rDev -14.6%
look: 3.5 | smell: 3.5 | taste: 3.5 | feel: 3.5 | overall: 3

On-tap at the New Belgium Tap Room

A: Rich bronze color with little head or lace.

S: Spicy with light fruit aromas. A prominent solvent-like character.

T: Flavors of a potpourri of spices and banana. Heavily phenolic with a slight taste of household cleaner.

M: Medium body and mouthfeel. Sticky with a lingering phenolic taste.

D: Decent, but far too phenolic for my taste.

Photo of rwdkosak
4.38/5  rDev +10.1%
look: 4 | smell: 4 | taste: 4.5 | feel: 4.5 | overall: 4.5

On-tap, poured into tulip glass at below cellar temp. A rich, deep amber, half centimeter head that lasted longer than expected. Nose was appealing...very appealing with hints of fruit, a quite floral scent without note of alcohol which surprises one with ABV >9%.

Taste was enjoyable, again fruit and sweet floral, fairly light on the palate, again a welcome surprise. Slight malt followed with just the slightest feel for alcohol content but by no means sharp or detracting.

A very drinkable beer and though there are better examples of a Belgian style/Grand Cru, I still rate this highly..Exemplary effort for a US brewery.

Photo of wagenvolks
4.08/5  rDev +2.5%
look: 4.5 | smell: 4 | taste: 4 | feel: 4.5 | overall: 4

Served on-tap in a New Belgium goblet at The Ginger Man in Austin, Texas.

I've always been a fan of New Belgium, and their Grand Cru is a solid addition to their repertoire. Pours a mahogany-copper hue into the goblet, bright and bursting with carbonation. The head retention is phenomenal, as the golden-khaki bubbles remain in a thick layer throughout, leaving some nice lacing behind in the process. The aroma is rife with notes of banana, clove, Belgian yeasts, peach, dark wheat malts, and a hint of floral hops. Aromatically, it reminds me more of a Weizenbock, but no complaints otherwise.

Flavor profile matches up well with the aroma, as complex layers of dark Belgian candy, wheat, pepper, toffee malt, and fruity yeast notes all combine to achieve a palate-pleasing experience. Mouthfeel is perfectly carbonated with a medium-thick body, and finishes semi-dry with a lingering fruity sweetness. Still getting the whole Weizenbock vibe from this beer, but either way, it's a damn tasty brew. Cheers to New Belgium--bottle this thing already!

Photo of homebrew311
4.65/5  rDev +16.8%
look: 4 | smell: 5 | taste: 5 | feel: 4 | overall: 4

On tap at the Map Room.

Since moving to Chicago, the one beer that I have missed the most is the New Belgium Abbey. When I saw the Grand Cru version on tap, I jumped on it... and I was not dissappointed.

A- dark, reddish, slightly cloudy, thick white soapy head

S- I smell grapes, belgian candi sugar, sweet malts and other fruity notes

T- This is delicious. Very well hidden alcohol for a 9.4 ABV, tastes very similar to the normal Abbey Ale from NB. Initial grain sweetness followed by a nice dryness from the alcohol. Very well balanced.

M- thin to medium body, very bubbly, reminiscent of some of the better belgians (st. bernardus)

D- Abbey Ale is one of my favorite go to brews, and if I could find this in the bottle in Chicagoland, this would fall under the same category. For its ABV, this is dangerously drinkable.

Photo of Gueuzedude
3.9/5  rDev -2%
look: 4 | smell: 4 | taste: 4 | feel: 3 | overall: 4

Sampled on tap at 1702 Tucson AZ
Arrives in a frozen, frozen, frozen fucking glass. I don't know why I expected this to automatically served in a warm tulip glass; I am so pissed at myself for not specifying; oh well perhaps I'll remember next time. As I transfer my pint to a Belgian tulip aromatic notes of banana come out. The beer is topped by a frothy, initially three-finger thick, lightly tan colored head. The beer is a lightly hazed, amber color that shows a flash of color when held up to the window on this Tucson afternoon. Ample banana notes lead to notes of sweet plums, raisins and a fair amount of spicy clove. There is a backdrop of caramelized grain and toasted malts towards the end of the nose. The nose is very ester driven, and is definitely quite influenced by the fermentation / yeast character.

My first sip shows a firm, but not overly so, sweetness that accentuates lots of fruit notes (banana and concentrated pear are most prominent), this is backed by a nice spiciness (product of both carbonation and fermentation character) that provides a peppery bite and a touch of young-ginger like spice. My pizza cuts through the sweetness a bit and brings out a bit more of the spiciness. The fruit character is the most prominent set of flavors here with notes of banana and pear being joined by apple reminiscent notes, perhaps a touch of raisin and some definite bubble-gum (both juicy-fruit and hubba-bubba). Clove phenolics mix in with the fruity esters and tend to linger on in the palate with a soft turpene like bite. This definitely has a heft to it with a medium sort of body that tends to stick to the palate; this is definitely a sipping beer. Much of the sweetness here though is accentuated by the esters and clove notes rather than straight residual malt sugars.

This has a nice balance between the sweet, fruit driven notes and the spicy fermentation character, but somehow it seems to be lacking a little something to be really balanced. It is very tasty though, and I am quite pleased to finally get a chance to try this beer.

Photo of OStrungT
3.98/5  rDev 0%
look: 4.5 | smell: 4 | taste: 4 | feel: 4.5 | overall: 3.5

This beer pours a brownish red color, with a creamy, light tan head. the head fades slowly, leaving a good lacing.

This beer has a fruity aroma. I smell figs, dates, and raisins. The dates really stand out. It has a caramel like malty aroma. Some earthy funk is also present.

This beer tastes like it smells. Dates up front, with some fig and raisin. A sweet caramel flavor is also present.

This beer goes down smooth, leaving a date aftertaste. The alcohol is hidden well in this beer.

This beer would be a decent session beer. It tastes good, but it may get cloying after a time. Also, the alcohol content is rather high, making it hard to drink too many.

Overall: Good beer, and I am glad to have been able to try it on tap.

Photo of sprucetip
4.2/5  rDev +5.5%
look: 5 | smell: 5 | taste: 4 | feel: 3.5 | overall: 4

From Notes. On tap at the Stumbling Monk in Seattle.

Deep copper with red highlights, long lasting head and lacing.

Huge aroma, complex, malty, yeasty, dark fruity.

Sweet malt, vaguely spicy, dark fruity, hint of yeast & slightly bitter dry finish. Very, very nice but not exceptionally complex.

A little fiz, dry finish, not much texture.

Smooth and balanced but a sipper to be savored at 9.5%

A great beer in a great beer hall.

Photo of russpowell
4.28/5  rDev +7.5%
look: 3 | smell: 4.5 | taste: 4.5 | feel: 4 | overall: 4

Enjoyed at trinity BP

Pours orange/amber with sand colored head, average head retention & lacing

S: Apricot, peach, bubblegum

T: Much dryness, bubblegum, & a touch of toffee up front. Slight green apple twang, peaches, more toffee, a bit of fruitcake, breadyness & bubblegum as this warms. Finishes dry with general orchard fruit & honey, plus some nice vanilla extract notes

MF: Sticky with minimal carbonation & much fruittyness

Drank pretty good, I probably would've bought this more as Weizenbock, but very nice none the less!

Photo of midaszero
3.85/5  rDev -3.3%
look: 4 | smell: 3 | taste: 4 | feel: 4.5 | overall: 4

A - Clear red amber with a light off white head and good lacing

S - Sweet and malty but faint

T - Little bit of a burn. Strong malt and fruit flavors come out though

M - Medium body with medium carbonation

D - Pretty solid and easy to drink. Overall enjoyable

Photo of jcdgoad
4.83/5  rDev +21.4%
look: 4.5 | smell: 5 | taste: 5 | feel: 4.5 | overall: 4.5

I absolutely loved this beer. I had it on tap at the flying saucer in Little Rock, AR. All I can say is wow. I could taste bourbon and the funky Belgium flavor and all I can say is wow. The beer was dark like a porter or a stout, and it was very drinkable. This is a must try beer.

Photo of ccrida
4.05/5  rDev +1.8%
look: 4 | smell: 3.5 | taste: 4 | feel: 4.5 | overall: 4.5

On draught at Belmont Station, served in a 25cl Chimay goblet.
Appearance is a hazy garnett with a very creamy, egg-shell head that leaves thick sheets of foamy lace.

Smell is pretty faint, sweet fruity esters, cherry, with very light boozy pheonls.

Taste is nice, big esters, spicy and phenolic, cured fruits, jolly rancher apricot, cotton candy. Sweet but not to sugary.

Mouthfeel is grate, very light, a crisp, creamy carbonation.

Drinkability is high, this is very tasty. Too bad they didn't make it another value offering in a 12 oz format, like their trippel and dubbel. Solid, if not spectacular, at least flawless.

Photo of zeff80
4.45/5  rDev +11.8%
look: 4.5 | smell: 4.5 | taste: 4.5 | feel: 4 | overall: 4.5

Served in a New Belgium goblet.

A - Arrived at my table with a two finger, caramel colored head. The beer was cloudy with a burgandy hue.

S - It smelled of sweet biscuty malt, candy sugar, dried fruits (plum and cherry). I spent several minutes just smelling the beer.

T - The taste matched the aroma. Sweet maltiness with some earthy hops, sugar sweetness and dried fruit flavor.

M - It was soft and smooth with a touch of fizziness. A medium-bodied beer.

D - This is a delicious brew. I'm thrilled Sycamore has started carrying the Lips of Faith series.

Photo of emerge077
4.22/5  rDev +6%
look: 4.5 | smell: 4.5 | taste: 4 | feel: 4 | overall: 4.5

Looking over the tap list, this jumped out at me as a new arrival at the Map Room. It was served in a fluted tulip glass.

High clarity reddish auburn, with a dense cap of off-white foam. The head had a nice creamy texture, and was very long lasting. Aromas were sweet and loaded with fruit and caramel. Banana/juicyfruit gum esters with some clove spice in the background. It was mandatory to sniff this before every sip...

Flavor was likewise sweet and rich. Liquid caramel, candi sugar, with spicy phenolics that gave it a drying finish. Savory feel with slightly lower carbonation that was still perceptible. No hint of the alcohol, but it's definitely a slow sipper. Somewhere between dubbel and quad, entirely delicious.

Photo of waltonc
4/5  rDev +0.5%
look: 4 | smell: 4 | taste: 4 | feel: 4 | overall: 4

On tap at City Beer Store. Wow, this is a delicious cerveza. Malty, sweet, candi sugar, pronounced carbonation that retained some lacing throughout my enjoyment of it. Medium mouthfeel, and susceptible to being consumed in large quantities, notwithstanding the high ABV. I will be a repeat drinker of this if I see it again.

Photo of GoreStorm
4.25/5  rDev +6.8%
look: 4.5 | smell: 4 | taste: 4.5 | feel: 4 | overall: 4

dark and slightly foggy brown in color with half inch head

very sweet and malty, scent of candi suger is present.

some hints of darker fruits and sweet. this may be too sweet for many but it's right up my alley.

really good beer, i can't believe that this is from the same people that make fat tire.

Photo of mkorpal
4.13/5  rDev +3.8%
look: 4 | smell: 4.5 | taste: 4.5 | feel: 4 | overall: 3

On tap at Choice City Butcher and Deli for $5 per pint.

Served in a standard pint glass. A nice deep brown with a decent head. It's a very nice looking beer.

I've got a bit of a cold, so my smell is a bit off. But, what I did smell was very nice. Some very good fruity smells in this beer. Maybe some yeasty smells as well.

The taste was very nice. lots of standard Belgium fruits such as banana and cherries and whatnot. the flavor profile is similar to the standard Abbey Ale except perhaps a bit more pronounced. I wish I could have the sensitivity to taste that some people here do, but it hasn't developed yet, so all I really can say is this beer tasted great.

Mouthfeel was good. it was medium bodies with a good amount of carbonation. pretty much the middle of the road.

Drinkability takes a little bit of a hit here. While it's not bad in any way, it's a little tough to finish a pint. The Alcohol in this beer does catch up with you and the sweetness prevents you from getting seconds. All in all, it's is a fantastic beer. I would love to get my hands on more. Thanks to Choice City for having this beer.

By the way, this is my first beer review. i hope I did well.

Photo of nickd717
4.03/5  rDev +1.3%
look: 4.5 | smell: 4 | taste: 4 | feel: 4 | overall: 4

On tap at City Beer Store in San Francisco.

A - Reddish brown and lively.

S - Lots of fruits (light and dark), yeast, and a little alcohol.

T - Complex. Starts with banana, then moves on to cherries and other dark fruits. Fairly malty and yeasty as well.

M - Smooth, medium-bodied, with medium carbonation. Fits well with the fruity taste.

D - An excellent brew overall. I could drink 10 of these, and I would if there weren't other beers to try and a little annoyance called having to drive.

Photo of brewandbbq
4.03/5  rDev +1.3%
look: 3.5 | smell: 4.5 | taste: 4 | feel: 3.5 | overall: 4

Best before date of Sept. 13,2003.

Pours dark, brilliant ruby, with half-inch head of off-white. Some minimal lacing between sips.

The nose on this one is is excellent.
Dark, ripe fruits, juicy malt, raisins, and nougat.
Cherries, figs, and a hint of vanilla.

The mouthfeel is a bit sticky and medium at best. Low carbonation detracts.

Malt-laden and fruity on the pallet. A slight roast adds some depth, as well as earthy undertones. Bitterness is surprisingly firm.
Notes of pepper-studded chocolate and grape jam.

Finishes drying, bitter, and warming.

I was told that this was the last batch that was bottle conditioned. No oxidation was apparent, and the aromatics were outstanding.

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

Had on tap in Seattle. Served in a New Belgium goblet. It's a clear but deep red brew with pink tints. Has a decent white head that fades. Nose is very sweet fruits mixed with dark plums. Taste is syrupy sweet balanced with hops and a malty backbone. Great example of the style. Alcohol comes through in the finish. Mouthfeel is excellent, nice and thick and creamy. Drinkability is good but may be hurt by the ABV.

Lips Of Faith - Grand Cru Abbey Ale from New Belgium Brewing
89 out of 100 based on 322 ratings.