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Unibroue 16 - Unibroue

Not Rated.
Unibroue 16Unibroue 16

Displayed for educational use only; do not reuse.
BA SCORE
91
outstanding

279 Ratings
THE BROS
90
outstanding

(view ratings)
Ratings: 279
Reviews: 239
rAvg: 4.07
pDev: 9.34%
Wants: 6
Gots: 14 | FT: 0
Brewed by:
Unibroue visit their website
Quebec, Canada

Style | ABV
Belgian Strong Pale Ale |  10.00% ABV

Availability: Limited (brewed once)

Notes/Commercial Description:
This beer is retired; no longer brewed.

No notes at this time.

(Beer added by: taez555 on 02-16-2007)
View: Beers (34) | Events
Beer: Ratings & Reviews
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Ratings: 279 | Reviews: 239 | Display Reviews Only:
Photo of Chaney
2.9/5  rDev -28.7%
look: 4 | smell: 3 | taste: 3 | feel: 2.5 | overall: 2.5

Special thanks to ahalloin for bringing this retired brew to a tasting.

A: Mildly cloudy, golden color, with about a 1-2 finger head that stayed fairly present throughout the session. The carbonation was substantial.

S: Mildly metallic, with tons of "moderately" dark fruit notes (eg. plums) , and with a decent scent of fresh filtered water. Boozy? Hell yeah!

T: On the taste, there wasn't much fresh about it. Not only did I get more metal, but I would even go as far as calling it "rust-like"... about like drinking previously frozen water off a lamp post. As I got into the session, this undesirable quality decreased. Pilsner-esque, with a bit of plum and mango notes.

M: Carbonation has never been an issue with Unibroue .... in this category, this fine brewery is about as good as it gets! Thick enough for this style, but the overpowering booze killed the day and then some. This was probably due to age.

D: I had a discussion with another BA at the session about describing something as oxidized vs. metallic in terms of taste. I often use the term metallic interchangeably and perhaps I shouldn't. Nevertheless, this one was past its prime.

Photo of Arbitrator
3.53/5  rDev -13.3%
look: 4 | smell: 3.5 | taste: 3.5 | feel: 3.5 | overall: 3.5

Chilled 750mL into a glass. Re-review.

A: Pours a dark amber orange with huge fluffy head. Good retention, with good lacing.

S: Banana, orange rind, peppers and cloves, and caramel. This is well oxidized at this point; the aroma gives off aromas of candi sugar with a strong sherry note. Mild cardboard / paper to it. I still find it pleasant on the whole, but I have a feeling its best days are behind it.

T: Follows the nose pretty well. A light backbone of toast, banana, and clove gives it a weizen-like impression at first, but it develops into a larger profile of orange rind, apples, pears, and earthy yeast. There is a general sweetness that almost covers the clove in the finish; at times I liken it to candi sugar and at other times to honey, but I'm convinced in the end that this is the oxidation at work, as it is often sherry-like. Some cardboard in the aftertaste, though nothing too bad.

M: Medium bodied, with slightly high carbonation. But it's not overcarbonated like I find most Unibroue offerings to be. I'm guessing the age has tempered it a bit. Has a sweet finish.

D: Fairly drinkable. I'm generally not impressed with Unibroue's BSPAs, but this one was pretty good. I think I held it a bit past its peak, but it wasn't bad.

Photo of womencantsail
3.33/5  rDev -18.2%
look: 4 | smell: 3 | taste: 3.5 | feel: 3.5 | overall: 3

A: The pour is an orange-amber color with a thin layer of off-white foam.

S: Definitely a lot of oxidation happening here. Stale sugar, particularly brown sugar, with some cardboard. A fairly potent orange peel note, which is actually nice.

T: This is intensely sweet, but I suppose it works out alright. Lots of fruit character such as oranges, pears, apples, maybe strawberries. Some caramel, too, just for good measure. It's still quite oxidized, despite what good flavors that are there.

M: The body is medium with a moderate carbonation.

D: Despite the flaws, this one wasn't horrendous. Some decent points to it, which was pleasant in what was a lackluster lineup overall.

Photo of Mora2000
4/5  rDev -1.7%
look: 4 | smell: 4 | taste: 4 | feel: 4 | overall: 4

The beer pours a hazy brown-orange color with an off-white head. The aroma is heavy on the caramel malt and green apples. I also get a little bit of yeast mixed in.

The flavor is a mix of toffee, green apples, candy and brown sugar, alcohol and yeast. The flavor is very nice and is well balanced between the malt and fruit flavors.

Medium mouthfeel and medium carbonation.

Photo of BeerAdvocate
4/5  rDev -1.7%
look: 4 | smell: 4 | taste: 4 | feel: 4 | overall: 4

Review from BeerAdvocate Magazine June 2007.

Brewed to celebrate 16 years--what about celebrating the survival of two buyouts?

Hazy and tawny, with a bubbly effervescence that holds together in a thick lather of foam. Big bready yeast aroma, hints of ripe plum and raisins, and a spicy backing in the nose. Semi-crisp; a creamy medium body. Extra-spicy, with a fresh yeast tone throughout. In the aroma and flavor are suggestions of cotton candy, bubble gum, rosewater and a faint taste of berry. Creamy malt character. There's a sweetness to start and a biscuity flavor from middle to end. Hops are minimal, allowing the spicy phenols to push for balance. Fruity, with warming esters. Faint suggestion of clove and cinnamon, black pepper and lemon rind. A bready maltiness comes though as the beer warms up a bit. Finishes with a thick, spicy malt flavor.

A big, bold Belgian-inspired Ale, with more balance compared to previous years' offerings--certainly more palatable. By far, this is Unibroue's best an- niversary beer to date. Pair this with a wedge of Humboldt Fog cheese and water crackers.

Photo of charliedvrs
4.28/5  rDev +5.2%
look: 4 | smell: 4 | taste: 4.5 | feel: 4.5 | overall: 4

Served from the 750ml corked and caged bottle at Novare Res, first beer of a great afternoon!

A - Pours a hazy gold, with a bit of yeasty sediment left at the bottom of the bottle. Two to three fingers of thick white head rise to the top of the glass, providing a good amount of lace.

S - Sweet light fruits. Peaches, pears, pineapple. The yeast is delicate and the malts give a pleasant bready that is secondary to the fruit aromas.

T - Taste follows the nose but also has a spice, pepper taste as you move towards the bottom of the bottle. It's subtle, and still only lingers in the background compared to the sweeter fruits. There's a distinct honey flavor as well. It almost reminds me of a Saison.

M - Lots of carbonation from this four year old beer, giving it a refreshing quaility I wish I could compare to a bottle when it first came out.

D - The alcohol content is practically indetectable. It goes down easy and has so many interesting little complexities that spring up throughout the entire bottle. This is one to seek out.

Photo of drpimento
4.28/5  rDev +5.2%
look: 4 | smell: 3.5 | taste: 4.5 | feel: 4.5 | overall: 4.5

This has been in a box in the dark at room temp for some years so I was worried that it might have taken a hit. But, happily for me, it just got better! Poured a big, sudsy, foamy, frothy, light tan head that settled out after a bit and a little lace. Color is a lovely clear, medium amber. Aroma is big bread yeast, malt, a little metalic, and malt. Flavor is like aroma minus the metalic and plus a little fruitiness and malt sweetness, but cut with the carbonic acid and the bitterness of yeast and hop. Body is excellent - mouth filling and the bubbles are just right for the malt et al. Finish is like flavor and slowly fades in a medium long period. Very well rounded beer and easy drinking.

Photo of Bonis
4.43/5  rDev +8.8%
look: 4 | smell: 4 | taste: 4.5 | feel: 4 | overall: 5

Appearance - Pours a cloudy orange/amber color with a huge head that lingers for a while and settles to about a half finger throughout the duration.

Nose - Light colored fruits and belgian yeasts. No alcohol present. Sweet like a wine or hard cider and slightly earthy.

Taste - This is without a doubt one of the most amazing brews I have ever tasted. Big belgian yeast and fruit flavors. I am getting primarily green apples, as well as some hints of pear. Similar to the smell in that I taste NO ALCOHOL, which is amazing for a 10% abv brew! The spicy clove flavor is there like in other Unibroue offerings, but not nearly as intense. Not nearly as complex as I expected, but this one is simply delicious.

Mouthfeel - This one has a bunch of carbonation for being aged so long, but I'm not going to lie.. It did not negatively impact the beer in any way. It almost gave the beer a champagne-esque feeling in the mouth.

Drinkability - Split this bomber with a friend, but boy, I really wish I had the other half! This is beyond drinkable for a 10% beer. If you can find this one, buy it NOW! This was brewed about 4 and a half years ago and I'm guessing there aren't many left out there. Had this one over 8 months past the drink by date, but it seemed perfectly delicious to me. What can I say, it aged well.

Photo of brystmar
4.05/5  rDev -0.5%
look: 4 | smell: 4.5 | taste: 4 | feel: 3.5 | overall: 4

Bomber into a Unibroue tulip at the Freakin Frog in Vegas.

A: hazy brown-red with two fingers of white head. Minimal lace.

S: malt, malt, and more malt! Fruit and cloves too.

T: malty and spicy with fruit throughout. Finishes dry and smooth with a hint of boozy warmth. Delicious!

M&D: really stings the tongue with carbonation right off the bat. Turns more subtle as it sits and thickens. Easy to drink and really well balanced overall. Enjoyable!

Photo of Boto
4.47/5  rDev +9.8%
look: 4 | smell: 4.5 | taste: 4.5 | feel: 4.5 | overall: 4.5

750 ml bottle: The cork comes out of this one with a loud "pop". This one pours a cloudy/opaque orangish color. There is a fairly substantial off-white head that lingers and leaves quite a bit of lacing. The aroma is very nice. Bready and yeasty, with lots of fruits. Pineapple, citrus and some faint spices. Good body to this one. Flavors are mixed. Bready, yeasty, pineapple, citrus, a faint spiciness. Just a bit sweet with some dryness to the finish. this was an excellent beer!

Photo of sweemzander
4/5  rDev -1.7%
look: 4 | smell: 4 | taste: 4 | feel: 4 | overall: 4

750mL corked bottle poured into a tulip. Says December 2009 on the bottle. . . I think thats the best by date?

(A)- Pours a very cloudy; almost murky orange amber color that produced a massive yet lovely frothy white head with some good staying power.

(S)- Very citrus-like with peach, mango, pineapple, & just a bit of lime. Very tropical in the fruits department. Has just a minimal note of spiciness & clay.

(T)- Pretty much just like the smell. Its primarily a caramelized tropical fruit base. Has just a tiny bit of clay & finishes in a slightly dry bitterness that turns a tad funky from age.

(M)- A good carbonation level. Very smooth & balanced actually. Still has some good & unique flavors and power behind it. Thankfully this was stored well, because I had my doubts about if this was still good or not, but my gamble has paid off!

(D)- Aged beers always fascinate me because of how it can change over time & morph into something different & unique, yet special at the same time. This one certainly changed into a big tropical fruit bomb of a beer that I am really enjoying right now. This bottle will be gone very soon for sure. If you can acquire this right now I would suggest giving it a try if you know it was stored well.

Photo of jbonapar
4.22/5  rDev +3.7%
look: 4 | smell: 4.5 | taste: 4.5 | feel: 4 | overall: 3.5

Pear is right! I purchaed this beer, and didnt thing I'd drink it for a few years but decided too finally open it...

Smell: Pears...Sweet sweet pears....
Taste: Interestingly, at first I didnt pour the trub(or bottom of the bottle) into my glass...me and a friend tried and noted strong pear and apply sweetness....no bitterness...then, we shook the bottle and poured it it...Amazing, it added so much complexity. The apple and pear where still there but it melded with aspicey bitterness...this beer was complete...amazing...started sweet with apple and pear..then, developed into a bitterness that quickly turned into a spicy comfort...Such an amazing beer...i wish I had another, doing 1 review doesnt do it justice....

Photo of BeerFMAndy
3.75/5  rDev -7.9%
look: 3 | smell: 3.5 | taste: 4 | feel: 4 | overall: 3.5

750 ml bottle poured into a Unibroue tulip. B20070928Q on the bottle, 10% ABV, December 2009.

A - The color is a totally hazed golden apricot amber with a tall head from a moderately harsh pour. The head sank slowly but didn't leave much lace behind. A dense cream-colored dollop much like whipped topping.

S - Interesting yeast aroma off the bat. Hints of mild spices with an interesting fruit mixture. A touch of apricot with light pineapple and mango. Lightly earthy wood on the finish. Pilsner malts and a small drizzle of caramel. Peculiar hops too. All very odd smelling.

T - Bold pilsner and caramel malts give a burst of sweetness right away followed by the blast of fruitiness. Mango and light apricot with a faint pineapple citrus drop. Yeast is all over too. A black pepper-like spice finish with a little clove maybe? Very complex and all over the place.

M - Medium-bodied and smooth, the carbonation popped the cork pretty harshly and it tingles in the mouth joyously. The finish is whats a bit different to me. A combination of spice, sweet fruit, mild tartness, and a low hoppy bitterness.

D - By the end of the 750 I wont want any more. It's somewhat overpowering in all the categories. A bit odd in a way too. One of Unibroue's more unique beers.

Photo of cosmicevan
4.28/5  rDev +5.2%
look: 5 | smell: 4.5 | taste: 4.5 | feel: 4 | overall: 3.5

Found one of these a little while ago at New Beer in NYC. Guess there are some advantages of having some old stock?

Poured from 750mL bomber into Unibroue tulip.

A - Poured a murky/cloudy orange with champagne-like bubbles dancing from the bottom of the glass (so cloudy that I was only able to see the lively carbonation by holding it to the light. Frothy yeasty generous head with lacing that really clinged to the glass. This beer looks beautiful.

S - Apple, fruitpunch, berries, candied sugar with a touch of grape. As it warms, the alcohol comes out a bit more.

T - Taste is much more dark fruit and spicey than the smell suggests. Alcohol is very upfront. I'm a big fan of Unibroue and their beers all carry a few similar characteristics in the flavor dept, so I really enjoyed this one. I wish I could have tried it a year ago to compare.

M - Lively carbonation. Has a wonderfully sweet tingly spicey aftertaste.

D - Alcohol content is a bit too much. This is a great brew to try, but not really one to have a few of.

Photo of darklordlager
3.13/5  rDev -23.1%
look: 4.5 | smell: 3.5 | taste: 3 | feel: 2.5 | overall: 3

A: Pours a bright, slightly opaque golden with a large birch-bark coloured head. Bubbles make the voyage from the bottom to the top of the glass with regularity. Some floaties.

S: Fruity Belgian yeast is most prominent (Unibroue's strain). Mild smell of dark fruit and bright citrus (orange). Light banana. Gets a bit bready as it warms, with a medicinal character.

T: Fruity, citrus/orange. Bready, but takes a back seat to the fruity citrus and yeast byproducts. Lots of orange, a little clove. Spicy graham cracker. The alcohol melds with the spice in a rather unpleasant way as it warms.

M: Medium body with abundant carbonation (a boatload). To the point of being annoying, irritating to my stomach even.

D: Overpowering fruity/yeasty character makes this something I won't reach for again.

Photo of LittleBug31
3.4/5  rDev -16.5%
look: 3.5 | smell: 4 | taste: 3.5 | feel: 3.5 | overall: 2.5

Unibroue 16th Anniversary

Appearance: Pours a pretty golden brown with visible bubbling trails of carbonation. Small flecks of sediment that float throughout. A nice yellowish-white head lingers for several minutes.

Smell: Very sweet, shortbready aroma. Smell is very subdued and light. Dark fruits and caramel, mixed with a little bit of citrus. Alcohol comes out very strongly as it warms up.

Taste: Strong flavor, despite the light smell--Fruity and sweet, with hints of spiciness. Hard to put my finger on nameable flavors, yet very characteristic of something I can't put my finger on.

Mouthfeel: Bubbly and bright. Significant carbonation. Taste lingers in your mouth for quite some time between sips.

Drinkability: Very pleasant right away. As is warms, however it gets pretty strong and unpleasant in more than just a few sips.

Photo of MeisterBurger
4.55/5  rDev +11.8%
look: 4 | smell: 4.5 | taste: 5 | feel: 4 | overall: 4

Pours just a fantastic deep cherry orange with a big, frothy, in-your-face head and wow, what a great way to break in my shiny new Duvel glass. The head retention is fantastic, and the lacing isn't half bad either.

The aroma is freshly sliced apples, whipped cream and a strong caramel/toffee with just a tinge of Belgian funk. Slightly rubbery. Some honey. A tinge of spice. Smells great. I'd pay just to sniff this beer.

But it gets better.

The taste is incredible. Malty, apple esters, sugary, just full and flavorful with some nice underlying spiciness and phenols keeping the sweetness in check throughout. The sweetness lingers in the aftertaste in the best possible way with almost a ghost of vanilla smoothing out the edges. The alcohol is present and numbs the tongue a little, but that's just fun.

This is medium bodied with a nice light amount of carbonation, nice and soft and smooth. There's some really mildly warming alcohol, but it's restrained.

Yeah. So this beer rocks and why am I more than a little sad that this is the only time I will likely ever have it?

Got this as part of a CanBif from notdan. Thanks dude!

Photo of biboergosum
4.15/5  rDev +2%
look: 4 | smell: 4 | taste: 4 | feel: 4.5 | overall: 4.5

500th review!

- Biggest, baddest beer in the fridge? Check.
- DDC tulip glass? Check.
- Lovely co-drinking partner in crime? Check.

Let's have at 'er...

This beer pours a hazy dark golden hue, with multiple fingers of foamy, soapy white head, which leaves very thin webbed lace around the glass. It smells of caramel malt, cloves, some banana, and yeast. The taste is caramel/toffee/candy sugar - the sweetness is readily apparent - then some cloves and light white pepper, and some warming alcohol. The carbonation is fairly restrained, the body a bit light, but quite smooth and rounded, and it finishes off-dry, the caramel malt sweetness, and a wee bit of yeastiness, persisting. The big ABV is quite nicely integrated, just a twinge of heat in the end.

The even sweetness and minimalist yeast profile make this my favorite Unibroue offering to date, in terms of drinkability. Onward and upward...

Photo of Dawkfan
4.18/5  rDev +2.7%
look: 4.5 | smell: 4.5 | taste: 4 | feel: 4.5 | overall: 4

A- Pours a golden orange with a big fizzy soap colored 4 finger head with really nice retention and good lace. Lots of bubbles coming up through the centre of this one.

S- Clove, sugar, banana, yeast, a little fruity as well. The booze is detectable, but really mingles with everything else nicely.

T- Follows the nose with a lot of sweet malts as well. Still some heat on this one.

M- Nice smooth body, appropriate carbonation for the style. A treat to role over the tongue.

D- This is the second time I've had this and it's just as enjoyable as the first. It's a big beer no doubt and I'm feeling pretty good right now. I hope I can grab a couple more of these before they're all gone.

Photo of mltobin
4.22/5  rDev +3.7%
look: 4 | smell: 4 | taste: 4.5 | feel: 4 | overall: 4

I have tried the 15 from Unibroue before and have been storing their 17 in my cellar. So, when I came across the 16 at DeCicco`s in Ardsley, NY, I had to grab a bottle. Prior to opening it, I did a quick tilted spin and managed to uncork it without a mess.

Appearance is a hazy dark golden color with a big head at first that becomes smaller with some time.
The smell is candy like (conveniently it is Halloween), but also seems to give off a general smell of alcohol. Taste is tad tart, along with more of that candy sweetness and finishes dry. Mouthfeel has carbonation and also a kick of spice, fairly typical in my opinion of a strong pale ale. And the drinkability is good...it is a sipper of course due to its` alcohol content. All in all, this is yet another impressive strong pale ale from Unibroue.

Photo of DefenCorps
3.9/5  rDev -4.2%
look: 4 | smell: 4 | taste: 4 | feel: 4 | overall: 3.5

At Max's Ravens and Rare beer event last Sunday.

Golden orange with a thin white head, decent retention. No lacing, this mildly hazy beer is pretty attractive nonetheless

Spicy and sweet with a great pepper and herbal character. Bubblegum sweetness, some honey, this is a touch sweeter than I like

Opening with a light sugar sweetness, honey and floral in character. Sugary and sweet with spicy alcohol. Mildly fruity with grapes and pears. Medium bodied with a fairly high level of carbonation, the long lasting drying finish with some alcohol and sweetness. A solid, enjoyable beer all-round, though a sipper given it's heft.

Photo of koopa
4.05/5  rDev -0.5%
look: 4 | smell: 4 | taste: 4 | feel: 4.5 | overall: 4

750ml caged and corked bottle that has been kept in a temperature controlled cellar environment for 1.5 years.

Appearance: Slightly hazed brown orange body with a 1 finger beige crown that shows a little retention and lace.

Smell: Belgian candy sugar, banana notes, pale malt, some red fruit notes.

Taste: Pale malt up front with a touch of sweetness that transitions towards a small belgian yeast and hop wave which then gives away to a slightly sugary sweet finish.

Mouthfeel: Medium bodied, with nice fine carbonation.

Drinkability: Surprisingly good for 10% abv

SAMPLED AGAIN ON 3.23.11

A: Same
S: Malt is sweeter and more pronounced, banana has softened but is still a major contributor, red fruit notes not so noticeable now.

Taste: Sweet malt and banana action.

Mouthfeel: Carbonation has softened a bit.

Overall: Drinking well right now!

Photo of mwilbur
4.15/5  rDev +2%
look: 4 | smell: 4.5 | taste: 4 | feel: 3.5 | overall: 4.5

Poured from 750 mL bottle into snifter. Finally got around to this one and, of note, it opened with a loud pop...louder than most fresh brews. Promising.
A: Pours a cloudy amber-orange with 1 inch creamy white head with decent retention.
S: Nice mix of spice, bready yeast, raisin, and soft lemony citrus hops.
T: Softer, mellower version of the aroma. Pleasant mix of spices (?cinnamon, coriander?), bready yeast, raisin, and hint of floral/citrus hops in the background.
M: A bit brief on the palate. Carbonated fizz, medium body.
D: Quite drinkable, especially considering ABV. I'm sure this softened with aging, but it held up very well.

Photo of dismal
4.13/5  rDev +1.5%
look: 4.5 | smell: 4 | taste: 4 | feel: 4 | overall: 4.5

Finally popped this one open. When I got the cork out there was a very nice pop that came with it which was reassuring. Poured it into two pint glasses (split it with my brother) and it poured a very nice hazy orange color with yellowish highlights. Had a nice big white head that had good retention and left decent lacing down the glass. The smell was pretty typical of Belgian beers, kind of yeasty, spicy, some orange and fruity. The taste was a lot like that. I think I was picking up a lot of orange in the taste as well as other fruits. Very nice taste, I really enjoyed it. The mouthfeel was good, not thin at all or anything. For a higher ABV this was very drinkable. I liked this one a lot. I would have loved to of tried it fresh but with a couple years on it was still great. Awesome beer and another great offering from Unibroue.

Photo of Lukie
4.9/5  rDev +20.4%
look: 5 | smell: 4.5 | taste: 5 | feel: 5 | overall: 5

Opened to celebrate my 24th birthday. And to commemorate all the good Unibroue has given to Australia, that will sadly be going away soon.

Pours out a dark woody orange/off brown, with a 2 inch thick bubbly head. This slowly fades into a nice lacing around the edges of the glass. For a 2 year old beer... nice.

Subdued caramel gives way to orange toffee. Hints of orange-like chocolate/caramel/toffee. A strange blend that is hard to distinguish, but is along the lines of sweet orange marmalade toffee... and such. haha.

Big rich toffee notes give way to a thick orangy-like caramel, and slight spice notes. It's a really creamy, sweet, marmalade orange like flavour. It's noticeable, but hard to explain. Just really well done. Not a mis-match of flavours, everything is joined together into one smooth long lasting flavour.

For 10% this is remarkably easy to drink, with those alcohol notes probably becoming subdued through some age in the ol' cellar. A delicious beer, which shows off the mastery of Unibroue.

Unibroue 16 from Unibroue
91 out of 100 based on 279 ratings.