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Unibroue 17 Grande Réserve - Unibroue

Not Rated.
Unibroue 17 Grande RéserveUnibroue 17 Grande Réserve

Displayed for educational use only; do not reuse.

803 Ratings
no score

(send 'em beer!)
Ratings: 803
Reviews: 200
rAvg: 4.22
pDev: 11.61%
Wants: 59
Gots: 196 | FT: 12
Brewed by:
Unibroue visit their website
Quebec, Canada

Style | ABV
Belgian Strong Dark Ale |  10.00% ABV

Availability: Winter

Notes/Commercial Description:
This French oak aged, bottle refermented dark ale has a remarkable and complex flavor profile. Its Grande Réserve appellation is a fitting endorsement of its exceptional aging qualities.

(Beer added by: MasterSki on 12-30-2011)
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Ratings: 803 | Reviews: 200 | Display Reviews Only:
Reviews by McShane:
Photo of McShane


4.53/5  rDev +7.3%
look: 4.5 | smell: 3.5 | taste: 5 | feel: 4.5 | overall: 4.5

So this evening I was in a horrible mood. Went for a drive, finished an errand and now at 10:45pm I'm settling in. I even cleaned my kitchen to work the angst out. This all wasn't going to get me back to ground zero though.
Last month I picked up a bottle of Unibroue's 17 Grande. It made me extremely happy. I had a second bottle. Then I went back to Whole Foods and got a third and a fourth. These I would tuck away for safe keeping. Well this was one of those nights where I was possessed to have exactly what I wanted. Part of my "errand" was to drive out to Whole Foods and pick up three more bottles of this beer. Why you ask? I was in a bad mood. When a guy get's in a bad mood he should (with in reason) get to do what he wants to do. My want was more of this brew so I could go home, and have the beer that I wanted, with out disturbing my cellar. Anal? Absolutely. Did I get what I wanted? Damn right.

The beer is brilliant. Let's go through the motions though and state clearly why it rocks so hard.

Appearance- Gorgeous brown that descends into absolute darkness. Know what I mean? On the outside it's got that deep amber color, in it's heart though it's enveloped in darkness.

Smell - Clean and fresh with a teasing pleasant scent of alcohol. Not rude, just enough that if you stick your nose in the glass, you realize you're going to get smashed.

Taste- Out of this world. Complex yet simple. What I mean is that it's features are beer like then the barrel aged mixture of texture and sweetness start to nag at you. I swear it's a bastardized cream sherry. It's all beer though because it bites back. The after taste forces your mouth to water.

Mouth feel - Clean with a nice bite. Not overly carbonated but enough that it makes your mouth tingle and your tongue wake up.

So I like this beer. I think it's pretty clear that I like it. It's also 10% ABV which in the mood I'm in, I'd prefer to be lightly smashed. So one beer doing that trick is perfect. It's like that old adage of snipers who say one shot one kill. Well that's what this beer does. Everything I like wrapped into one neat little package.

I suggest checking out Unibroue's site as well because the cool thing about their beers is that most of them have a legend behind them. Very cool stuff. Very cool company. Knock out brew.


Steve McShane
Drunkards Call Podcast
Growler Radio Podcast
@ayemcshane on Twitter.

Serving type: bottle

10-13-2012 05:57:05 | More by McShane
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Saskatchewan (Canada)

4.5/5  rDev +6.6%

07-28-2014 23:56:32 | More by YamagamiTravis
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07-27-2014 20:50:40 | More by mcrawford
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4.26/5  rDev +0.9%
look: 3.75 | smell: 4.25 | taste: 4.5 | feel: 4 | overall: 4

Poured from bottle into a snifter glass

Appearance – The beer pours a very murky brownish-red color with a small foam head of an off white tan color. The head fades moderately fast leaving only a decent level of foamy lace on the sides of the glass.

Smell – The aroma of the beer is massive and sweet with tons of darker fruits. The darker fruit smells are heaviest of a raisin smell, but contain other aromas of plum and fig as well. Along with the dark fruit are some rather strong smells of candied sugar as well as some smells of molasses. Other Belgian aromas of a yeasty smell as well as a decent showing of spice of a coriander, clove, and pepper aroma are there. Some banana smells and a bit of a boozy red wine smell mix with the sweeter Belgian strong dark smells nicely to produce a sweet and inviting aroma overall.

Taste – The taste begins much drier then would have been anticipated from the nose, but does begin with many of the flavors that may have been expected. Some darker fruit flavors of a raisin and fig taste mix with a decent showing of a toasted grain and spiced flavor of coriander and clove. As the taste advances, the darker fruit fade some, but are replaced by a bit of brown sugar and molasses, maintaining an overall moderate sweetness. All the while, the roasted flavors increase some and are joined by some rum and some grapy red wine flavors. Some woody flavors also come to the tongue more toward the end, mixing the more boozy rum and red wine flavors nicely and bringing in the barrel aged flavor the would be expected from the label. A bit of a cocoa and yeasty flavor come more toward the end as well, and with them bringing a light spicy earthy flavor, to overall in the end, leave a darker fruity, more lightly sweetened, Belgian strong dark flavor with a nice heavy warming feel to linger on the tongue.

Mouthfeel – The body of the beer is on the slightly thicker side with a carbonation level that is higher and pricklier. The bigger body is nice for the darker and boozy flavors of the beer all while the prickly carbonation is fantastic for the fruity, yeasty spiced, and sweet flavors of the beer. Overall, well done.

Overall – like most of Unibroue’s beers, this is a very enjoyable and quite tasty brew with lots of robust flavors that blend rather well with each other. A very tasty Belgian strong dark.

Serving type: bottle

07-27-2014 02:27:16 | More by Darkmagus82
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4/5  rDev -5.2%

07-27-2014 00:30:42 | More by 22Blue
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3.76/5  rDev -10.9%
look: 5 | smell: 3.75 | taste: 3.75 | feel: 3.75 | overall: 3.5

750 mL bottle poured into a snifter.

Appearance - Deep reddish brown. Huge off white head. Lots of lacing. Thick collar.

Smell - Very fruity. Dark fruits. Cherry. Oak. Some banana.

Taste - Dark toffee malt. Then sweet fruitiness. A bit of sherry oxidation. Intense oak.

Mouthfeel - Well carbonated. Medium heavy.

Overall - Very sweet. Pretty interesting, though.

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07-25-2014 02:07:01 | More by Alieniloquium
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4/5  rDev -5.2%

07-24-2014 23:17:16 | More by GABrew
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4/5  rDev -5.2%

07-22-2014 01:04:08 | More by Tim725
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4/5  rDev -5.2%

07-21-2014 17:36:46 | More by Ryan82
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07-21-2014 00:30:15 | More by r0dr1g0
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4.25/5  rDev +0.7%

07-20-2014 22:25:00 | More by csnyder83
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Alberta (Canada)

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07-20-2014 21:22:48 | More by Howlader
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07-20-2014 01:27:15 | More by Kevinpitts
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5/5  rDev +18.5%

07-19-2014 19:13:41 | More by Mroy113
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4.25/5  rDev +0.7%

07-17-2014 19:54:32 | More by belm001
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4.5/5  rDev +6.6%

07-16-2014 22:34:30 | More by vande
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4.19/5  rDev -0.7%
look: 4.5 | smell: 4 | taste: 4.25 | feel: 4 | overall: 4.25

I didn't know anything about this beer when I bought it . I usually like Unibroue so I took a chance. It poured out beautifully with a whipped beer mousse head and a caramel color that made me think it would be sweet. The smell was mysterious in that I could make out that it had spices, but all were too subtle to discern which spices they were.
The first taste made me something like galangal or ginger. It has a lot going on flavor-wise, layers of flavor. There is a very, very subtle bitterness, not hoppy though and a back of the mouth almost peppery taste. I think there must be roasted barley in there somewhere that gives it that caramel undertone. The oak mellows and rounds out the ale perfectly. It is clean and refreshing. How many 10% alcohol beers can you say that about? World Class.

Serving type: bottle

07-14-2014 20:49:23 | More by jrein0254
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4.75/5  rDev +12.6%

07-13-2014 03:54:19 | More by gtk1989
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Quebec (Canada)

5/5  rDev +18.5%

07-12-2014 01:20:00 | More by darnzy
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07-11-2014 03:56:39 | More by bobv
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4.43/5  rDev +5%
look: 5 | smell: 4.5 | taste: 4.5 | feel: 4 | overall: 4.25

Good looking beer here. Nice amber deep mahogany brown body, light carbonation, just lets some light through, not completely transparent. Creamy buttered tan head, very light brown, nice lace on glass. Everything here is inviting.

Smells very sweet and spicy and alcoholic. A bit of toasted sugar and malted barley, some yeast coming through as well. Somewhat grape and winelike, some apple flavors and... starfruit tartness at the beginning.

Taste is tart, spicy and very warming from the booze. I'm sticking by that starfruit profile. Nice yeast and toasted grain, only a little hop bitterness, but enough to recognize. This is the stuff.

Very good.

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Unibroue 17 Grande Réserve from Unibroue
94 out of 100 based on 803 ratings.