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Pauwel Kwak - Brouwerij Bosteels

Pauwel KwakPauwel Kwak

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

1,167 Ratings

(view ratings)
Ratings: 1167
Reviews: 628
rAvg: 3.76
pDev: 13.83%

Brewed by:
Brouwerij Bosteels visit their website

Style | ABV
Belgian Strong Pale Ale |  8.40% ABV

Availability: Year-round

Notes/Commercial Description:
No notes at this time.

(Beer added by: kbub6f on 06-30-2001)
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Beer: Ratings & Reviews
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Ratings: 1,167 | Reviews: 628 | Show All Ratings:
Photo of peensteen

Ontario (Canada)

3.78/5  rDev +0.5%
look: 3.5 | smell: 3.5 | taste: 4 | feel: 4 | overall: 3.5

Pale amber colour, one finger worth of white head, some lace here. Nose is of sweet candy, malty and some juicy fruits start to show themselves as well, spicy, bits of pepper and a bit yeasty. Taste is big and malty, fruity with a good deal of sweetness, apple and orange flavours, yeasty points, more fruit in the finish with some spice mostly clove and pepper. Light-med carbonation, medium body with some fuller points as well. This is a good although fairly sweet belgian, ABV goes largely undetected, but still not a stand out for me anyway.

Serving type: bottle

10-21-2012 18:15:12 | More by peensteen
Photo of DavoleBomb


3.9/5  rDev +3.7%
look: 3 | smell: 3.5 | taste: 4 | feel: 4.5 | overall: 4

Poured into a goblet, though I wish I had poured it into a yard glass.

3.0 A: Clear dark orange amber color. One and a half fingers of frothy light beige head. Retention is about average and just a short ring of lacing is left.

3.5 S: Toasty with a throat lozenge-like medicinal component. Quite sweet smelling with cherry, brown sugar, plum, and fig. It smells like a sugar-laden spread of some sort featuring the flavors listed. Moderate booziness. Candi sugar, Belgian Special B malt, lots of caramel, and maybe some toffee as well. Light generic spiciness from the yeast.

4.0 T: Like the nose, this is sweet, but actually a bit less sweet than the nose suggests. Toastiness, caramel, fig, and date are the most prominent flavors. Belgian candi sugar, special B, toffee, plum, and cherry follow. A little more clove and pepper than in the nose. Alcohol is fairly well hidden. Pretty good.

4.5 M: Medium body. Good spritzy carbonation. The spritziness in this is wonderful and is one of the main reasons I love Belgian beers. Light and creamy on the tongue. Very nice here.

4.0 D: I know this beer doesn't get a lot of love, but I think it's pretty good. Has lots of flavor and a great mouthfeel. Give it a go if you haven't.

Serving type: bottle

10-04-2012 23:32:10 | More by DavoleBomb
Photo of brewcrew76


3.68/5  rDev -2.1%
look: 4 | smell: 3.5 | taste: 3.5 | feel: 4 | overall: 4

A - Ruby red with a thin off white head.

S - Sweet caramel, dark fruits, hints of spice, cherry, cinnamon.

T - Sweet with caramel and dark fruits. Plum, raisin, maybe even some cherry.

M - Medium body and just a touch sticky.

D - On the sweet side and not very complex but solid.

Serving type: bottle

10-01-2012 00:44:02 | More by brewcrew76
Photo of TheSevenDuffs

Ontario (Canada)

3.03/5  rDev -19.4%
look: 3.5 | smell: 3 | taste: 3 | feel: 3 | overall: 3

Served in a very strange shaped glass that was a cross between a tulip and a weisse glass that came in a similarly strange branded wooden holder.

A - Medium amber with two fingers of off white head.

S - Sweet caramel, brown sugar and some Belgian yeast and clove aromas. Very sweet nose.

T - Caramel, brown sugar, candy sugar, Belgian yeast, clove. Very sweet overall with a slightly noticeable warming ABV. Very one dimensional with not much character.

M - Light body. Light carbonation.

Serving type: bottle

09-24-2012 15:43:29 | More by TheSevenDuffs
Photo of XicanoBeerRun


3/5  rDev -20.2%
look: 3 | smell: 3 | taste: 3 | feel: 3 | overall: 3

Copper, amber color. Little carbonation.

Smells boozie, molasses, dark dried fruit, fig jam.

Sweet, a little flat, biscuity aftertaste, wheat toast, not what I expected for the style. I don't pick up on the yeast that I would like with the style. Slightly metallic, dry finish. Of course it is a good beer, but for the price I would rather pick up another Belgian strong pale ale.

Serving type: bottle

09-24-2012 15:36:01 | More by XicanoBeerRun
Photo of Fatehunter


3.55/5  rDev -5.6%
look: 2.5 | smell: 4 | taste: 3.5 | feel: 3.5 | overall: 3.5

Poured into a chalice. Dark brown but almost clear with almost no head.
Smells like whole wheat bread and nothing else.
Strong bread and yeast taste, which is fine. Alcohol taste comes in strong too.
Smooth, medium body, low carbonation.
An enjoyable drink.

Serving type: bottle

09-23-2012 01:44:12 | More by Fatehunter
Photo of Blackwolf

3.85/5  rDev +2.4%
look: 3.5 | smell: 4.5 | taste: 3.5 | feel: 4 | overall: 4

Poured from a bottle into an oversized wine glass

A- Blood orange body, a nice tight white head that settled very quickly with no lacing, TONS of lively carbonation, very uniformed! Looks tempting...

S- Sweeet! Caramalts, banana, some fig/dark fruit, a bit of spice! It is just way too inviting... This is just a belgian special you can dig into when it hits your nose!

T- sweet caramalt, dark sugar and dark fruit! some banana, and a very and I mean VERY subtle yeast/spice. I really enjoy the taste of this.

MF- Medium bodied with a light-medium carbonation. Incredibly smooth. The flavor likes to hang around for a short while, but not long enough to make one want more and more. Just great, but a bit light for a belgium.

O- Yum. I loved it, the back abbey in my area had it on tap, but unfortunately ran out that night! I want more!!!! I am looking forward to trying this again on tap! Such a great beer. If you like belgians and you want a decent price pick this up!

Serving type: bottle

09-20-2012 06:52:31 | More by Blackwolf
Photo of doktorhops


3.45/5  rDev -8.2%
look: 2.5 | smell: 4.5 | taste: 3.5 | feel: 2.5 | overall: 3

More unusual than the name is the story behind "Kwak" and it's unique glassware. Devised as a method of giving the late 18th century coachman (who was not allowed to leave his coach) a thirst-slaking brew, and as the coaches of the day had a handy little slot cut out to hold the mini yard glass they could ride on and drink at the same time. A romantic notion, unfortunately dashed by the fact that coaches didn't have these glass holding slots cut out of them, in fact the glass and the story behind this brew is a marketing ploy from the 1980's to help it compete in the already oversaturated Belgian beer market, but who cares if it tastes good right?

Poured from a 330ml bottle into a tulip glass (closest thing I could find to Kwak's mini yard glass).

A: The body is clear deep chestnut, with a tan head that disappears almost immediately.

S: Smells quite nice; honeyed figs, papaya, caramel malts, candi sugar with a spiced rum note.

T: Bold and sugary flavours straight away. There is a big alcohol hit in the middle. Dark fruits are the most noticeable taste outside of this. Similar flavour to the Grimbergen, but Kwak certainly doesn't have the same finesse and isn't hiding the booze at all.

M: Medium carbonation with a slightly sticky body.

D: Average overall... for the style that is. Kwak places itself in a similar playing field to the Trappist dubbels, however where they bring their own unique dimensions to the table, and also taste like they've been crafted with passion (on a small scale), Kwak tastes like a macro attempt at a Trappist style, which ultimately falls sour for me.

Food match: Would lean towards desserts with a brew this sweet, something along the lines of a baked custard tart (Portuguese style) or if you were really interested in something savoury - Baked lamb with mint and almond pesto for a nice change.

Serving type: bottle

08-18-2012 06:15:36 | More by doktorhops
Photo of pkalix


4.08/5  rDev +8.5%
look: 4.5 | smell: 4 | taste: 4 | feel: 4.5 | overall: 4

poured into the DUVEL tulip glass. small head which didnt stay very long; spotty lacing (or just spots) as it's drunk down. beautiful copper color- probably its best trait. like the other reviews have said, it lacks in taste and is easier to drink than its other strong ale cousins, but it's not bad and for 8.4% ABV it goes down relatively well. it could be Belgium's budweiser or lawn mower ale, but with a heftier punch. but no, it's not as bad as a bud....

Serving type: bottle

07-20-2012 23:51:23 | More by pkalix
Photo of soju6


4/5  rDev +6.4%
look: 4 | smell: 4 | taste: 4 | feel: 4 | overall: 4

A: Pours a slightly hazy amber color with a good head that fades slowly to ample lacing.

S: Aroma of dark fruit, some spice, malt sweetness and a hint of the 8.4% ABV. Nice rich aroma.

T: Taste of malt sweetness, some caramel with fruit rounding out the flavor. Very subtle bitterness in the background and a slightly sweet finish.

F: Medium body smooth with a rich character.

O: Good drinker, good way to finish the day. Very good for the style.

Serving type: bottle

07-15-2012 20:23:33 | More by soju6
Photo of shigg85


3.68/5  rDev -2.1%
look: 4 | smell: 3.5 | taste: 3.5 | feel: 4 | overall: 4

Bought a bottle of this from the Tobu department store in Ikebukuro, Tokyo. Poured into a Rochefort goblet. The looks of this are okay, bubbling up from a dark amber hue with foamy petri dish style foam, leaving a bit of lacing around the edges. However, the smell and the taste for this just paled in comparison to other strong Belgians. Not much else beyond a hop scent, and the taste left me wanting more. Overall, this is still a high-quality beer, but nothing like its more superior cousin brews. I liked this, but I won't be buying it again.

Serving type: bottle

06-14-2012 05:46:08 | More by shigg85
Photo of UCLABrewN84


4/5  rDev +6.4%
look: 4 | smell: 4 | taste: 4 | feel: 4 | overall: 4

Pours a clear brown with a khaki head that settles to an oily film on top of the beer. Foamy rings of lace line the glass on the drink down. Smell is of malt, caramel, and some slightly fruity aromas. Taste is very much the same with a mild bitterness with each sip. This beer has a good level of carbonation with a crisp but medium bodied mouthfeel. Overall, this is a good beer with a nice sweet and malty flavor that I am enjoying.

Serving type: bottle

06-09-2012 01:11:14 | More by UCLABrewN84
Photo of MattyG85


4.33/5  rDev +15.2%
look: 4 | smell: 4 | taste: 4.5 | feel: 4 | overall: 4.5

Poured from 11.2 oz bottle into a Duvel tulip glass.

Appearance: Pours a deep brownish amber orange with lots of bubbles. About three fingers of off white head that slowly fade into a thin layer. Decent amount of lacing on the glass.

Smell: A pretty sweet smell. Caramel malts and toffee with Belgian yeast and some clove. Dark fruits with hints of raisins, plum, and figs. Candied sugar and some hints of citrus like you would find in a summer beer. Hops aren't really noticeable. Very malty and biscuity.

Taste: Like the smell, a sweet malt forward Belgian ale. Big taste of caramel malts and toffee with some Belgian yeast, cloves, and candied sugar. Dark fruits with notes of plums, raisins, and figs. Also some hints of citrus and banana. Hops are very subtle. Malty like an American lager but with a Belgian twist.

Mouthfeel: Medium to full bodied with a moderate level of carbonation. Somewhat prickly, syrupy, and slick. Alcohol is hidden well.

Overall: A pretty good Belgian ale. Robust malt presence with enough spice to keep it from becoming cloying. Fruits are good.

Serving type: bottle

05-08-2012 06:23:28 | More by MattyG85
Photo of tony223366


3.15/5  rDev -16.2%
look: 3 | smell: 3.5 | taste: 3 | feel: 3.5 | overall: 3

Goodluck Kwak, after having LOVED Moinette Blonde this beer has a lot to live up to.

A: Already it falls flat. Albeit not a bad looking beer or head it's not nearly as robust. Two fingers of creamy head instead of the normal robust rocky heads you see in other Belgian Strong Pale Ales. By the time I finished typing this sentence it's almost all gone. Color is a dark ruby mahogany which is a surprise. Fantastic clarity and nice carbonation. A decent looking beer but the head is a huge disappointment.

S: This also smells a lot sweeter than I think it should. Much more like caramel and dark fruits then Belgian Strong Pale Ale's normally do. Not an unpleasant aroma, just surprisingly different. Some estery yeastiness is present too. Nice spiciness to it.

T: Very sweet beer. Lots of caramel, toffee and dark fruitiness. It's rich but borderline cloying. On second thought I don't think it crosses that line. The alcohol is absolutely present which isn't too surprising. There is some spiciness present throughout. I let the beer set out for about an hour but I even think it needed a little bit more. It tastes pretty uneven... there's just not the right balance to this beer.

M: Medium body with smooth mouth. Slick and dense with medium to light carbonation.

O: I appreciate what they're trying to do but I think they just tried to make this beer "too much". I could see how this beer might hit some people's palate just right and they love it. But I think it's not balanced well and doesn't finish quite clean enough.

Serving type: bottle

05-04-2012 05:25:03 | More by tony223366
Photo of Douberd


3.95/5  rDev +5.1%
look: 4 | smell: 4 | taste: 4 | feel: 3.5 | overall: 4

Bottle of 330 ml, at home.
Very deep red/light brown colour with one finger of creamy, beige head, with an average retention.
Aroma is sweet, of fruits, plums, raisins. Quite strong smell.
Taste is also sweet and fruity, it follows the smell very close. Alcohol is masterfully concealed.
Medium to thick body and average carbonation.
Overall, a great beer.

Serving type: bottle

05-01-2012 18:00:19 | More by Douberd
Photo of ckollias


3.88/5  rDev +3.2%
look: 4.5 | smell: 3.5 | taste: 4 | feel: 3.5 | overall: 4

Enjoyed this 12oz bottle out of a large snifter glass.

A: Pours a clear ruby red hue with a huge, 5-finger, white, frothy head that slowly dissipates into a wispy lace leaving a nice trail down the glass.

S: Sweet caramel aroma with hints of cinnamon and spices.

T: Very sweet caramel flavor with spices and cinnamon in the background.

M: Medium body and medium carbonation.

O: Decent Strong Belgian Ale. A little sweet for my liking for still went down easy.

Serving type: bottle

04-17-2012 02:44:20 | More by ckollias
Photo of snaotheus


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

11.2oz bottle split into two snifters

Pours cloudy brownish with a medium head that fades to a ring and a film of fine bubbles. Smell is fruity, yeasty, dingy.

Taste is fruity, dark fruit like dates. A little funky. Moderately sweet.

Mouthfeel is slightly grainy. Overall, pretty good.

Serving type: bottle

04-07-2012 19:44:59 | More by snaotheus
Photo of flyingpig

United Kingdom (Scotland)

3.4/5  rDev -9.6%
look: 4 | smell: 4 | taste: 3 | feel: 3.5 | overall: 3.5

Red copper to dark amber coloured with a large, bubbly white head that has decievingly good retention and leaves some nice lacing on the side of the (fancy) glass.

Sweet smelling with a strong caramel and toffee malts aroma making itself known straight off the bat. This is followed up by a dark summer fruits aroma and plenty of sugar along with some plum and more caramel malts. Very pleasant without being sickingly sweet.

Strong sugary sweet taste to this one to begin with along with some caramel malts and some plum amongst other dark, fruity flavours. Very sweet but a little bit too sugary.

Medium bodied and as mentioned it is a very sweet tasting beer with a sticky feel to it and lots of carbonation.

A pleasant beer, and the proper glass was a nice touch but I found this one a little too sweet and sugary to fully enjoy. It was drinkable beer and the plum and dark fruits flavours were nice but it's propably not one that I'll have again.

1 of the 1001 Beers to try before you die:

Serving type: bottle

04-05-2012 10:02:48 | More by flyingpig
Photo of hopfacebrew


3.4/5  rDev -9.6%
look: 3.5 | smell: 3 | taste: 3.5 | feel: 3.5 | overall: 3.5

To be honest I only purchased this beer due to the glassware section of the store wherein I saw a cool little wooden case and glass specifically made for the beer. Poured from bottle undated to Duvel tulip the beer arrives a fairly clear amber color with a decent 1.5 finger white bubbly head with some retention and lacing. The nose is a disappointing mild caramel sweet character. Perhaps a hint of belgian yeast but nothing else really to report. The flavor is a little more impressive as the caramel malt sweetness blends well with the belgian yeast and provides a pleasing flavor. Mildly bitter with little hop character the beer is rather sweet and mild. Finishes crisp and clean and sweet. Well carbonated and medium bodied. Overall, nothing special really but not terrible. The glass and wooden case were cooler.

Serving type: bottle

04-04-2012 02:09:10 | More by hopfacebrew
Photo of frankiepop


4.28/5  rDev +13.8%
look: 4 | smell: 4 | taste: 4.5 | feel: 4.5 | overall: 4

I was quite impressed with all facets of Kwak. I am surprised by the moderate reviews that precede me. The name i ssuper cool. The look is pretty enough. Great creamy head.

I got a nice fruity smell out of that beer. Niiice.

The taste was very refreshing. I sucked this baby down in notime. Malty sweet and fruity all blended together for a real refreshing taste. And drinkabiltiy oh boy slid down theold hatch.

For a quad this is a great smooth summer ale. Yes sir! Drink this beer when Belgian play in the summer European Cup soccer match. I might recommend something like Weather Report to listen with Kwak.

Serving type: bottle

04-03-2012 02:51:50 | More by frankiepop
Photo of DARIVA


3.15/5  rDev -16.2%
look: 4 | smell: 2.5 | taste: 3 | feel: 4 | overall: 3.5

A: Nice amber colored beer with a good head.

S: Only caramel, I can discover, no further special scents.

T: The taste of biscuits and nougat in the aftertaste.

M: Nicely drinkable, good foam, and feeling fine carbonation.

O: Above average beer, a bit dusty.

Serving type: bottle

04-01-2012 15:56:26 | More by DARIVA
Photo of skatonic


4.03/5  rDev +7.2%
look: 3 | smell: 3.5 | taste: 4.5 | feel: 3.5 | overall: 4

Very sweet, but to be fair I like sweet. Good overall, would really only have one at a sitting. Served in a tall glass with a wooden holder. Strong, but pleasant. A pleasant beer with a very nice taste and finish. Hard to have more than one though. Different for a pale ale.

Serving type: on-tap

03-26-2012 03:57:53 | More by skatonic
Photo of Hopdaemon39

New York

3.73/5  rDev -0.8%
look: 4 | smell: 3.5 | taste: 3.5 | feel: 4.5 | overall: 4

Poured from an 11.2 oz into a Corsendonk chalice- pours a pretty dark, relatively clear amber color with only a little bit of foam, moderate retention, and a little lacing.

Smell is not very exciting- pretty faint, candi sugar, a little amber malt and belgian yeast.

Taste is all right- not as bad as I was expecting from previous reviews but certainly nothing special. Pretty sweet, definitely a little plum, candi sugar and a little bit of yeast.

Mouthfeel is probably the best part- a nice prickle at the beginning of the taste, medium bodied and the carbonation smoothes out throughout.

This is definitely not a strong pale ale- it's quite drinkable because of the mouthfeel. May get it again because of the price of a small bottle.

Serving type: bottle

03-24-2012 01:02:44 | More by Hopdaemon39
Photo of sfprint


3.18/5  rDev -15.4%
look: 3.5 | smell: 4 | taste: 3 | feel: 2.5 | overall: 3

A: Moderately dark reddish brown, mild to healthy column of rising carbonation, but not much of a head.
S: tree sap, a very specific type of fresh cut wood, with a bit of plum sweetness. Interesting
T: Amberish, with a combination sour/bitterness. Mild Rotten lemon tang in the aftertaste. Strange sweetness.
M: Kind of sour/tart in not the most pleasant way. Slightly dry and low carbonation.
O: Not so special but ok. But probably wouldn't drink it again.

Serving type: bottle

03-22-2012 00:48:48 | More by sfprint
Photo of steelerguy

New York

3/5  rDev -20.2%
look: 3 | smell: 3 | taste: 3 | feel: 3 | overall: 3

A - Copper color, extremely low carbonation...almost flat, nice just off white head that quickly becomes puny.

S - Some caramel malt, a little fruit aroma, very subtle.

T - Like the smell...a bit of caramel malt, a touch of dark fruit, and really not much else.

M - A moderate body, a bit creamy...leaves a coating, needs some more carbonation or alcohol to clean itself up.

O - A very ordinary beer, that is disappointing...not used to such mediocrity of a Belgian beer.

Serving type: bottle

03-17-2012 23:24:54 | More by steelerguy
Pauwel Kwak from Brouwerij Bosteels
85 out of 100 based on 1,167 ratings.