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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.
BA SCORE
94
outstanding

900 Ratings
THE BROS
-
no score

(send 'em beer!)
Ratings: 900
Reviews: 213
rAvg: 4.22
pDev: 11.85%
Wants: 69
Gots: 233 | FT: 14
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)
Beer: Ratings & Reviews
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Ratings: 900 | Reviews: 213 | Display Reviews Only:
Photo of Sammy
4/5  rDev -5.2%
look: 4 | smell: 3.5 | taste: 4 | feel: 4 | overall: 4.5

Rich, a Belgian like a wine. Well and complex malting. Not too sweet, very drinkable. Though not spicy, it has a richness of taste that was a mealin itself. Light chocolate, decent yeastability, better than Unibroue I have had.Dark thick brown, above average mouthfeel.

Sammy, Apr 29, 2012
Photo of UCLABrewN84
4.16/5  rDev -1.4%
look: 4 | smell: 4.25 | taste: 4.25 | feel: 3.5 | overall: 4.25

Bottle pour at Newhall Refinery in Newhall, CA.

Pours a murky brown with a foamy khaki head that settles to a small cap on top of the beer. Small patches of lace form around the glass on the drink down. Smell is of malt, dried fruit, dark fruit, spice, wood, earth, and alcohol aromas. Taste is much the same with slightly tart malt, dark fruit, spice, vanilla, and wood flavors on the finish. There is a mild amount of spice and wood bitterness on the palate with each sip. This beer has a lower level of carbonation with a slightly crisp and medium bodied mouthfeel. Overall, this is a very good beer with a nice mix of malt, fruit, and earth qualities all around.

UCLABrewN84, May 30, 2014
Photo of djrn2
4/5  rDev -5.2%

djrn2, Jun 04, 2012
Photo of zestar
4.25/5  rDev +0.7%

zestar, Jul 01, 2014
Photo of Texasfan549
4.25/5  rDev +0.7%

Texasfan549, Aug 06, 2012
Photo of metter98
4.16/5  rDev -1.4%
look: 4 | smell: 4 | taste: 4.25 | feel: 4 | overall: 4.25

A: The beer is very hazy yellowish brown in color and has a light amount of visible carbonation. It poured with a finger high beige colored head that died down but consistently left a thin layer of bubbles covering the surface.
S: Moderate aromas of dark fruits and maty sweetness are present in the nose.
T: The taste has flavors of dark fruits-prunes seem to stand out in particular-along with notes of Belgian yeast.
M: It feels medium-bodied on the palate and has a moderate amount of carbonation.
O: This beer has an incredibly complex taste that makes it a pleasant to sip, although its also very drinkable since it hides its alcohol very well from the taste.

Note: Bottled in 2011

metter98, Jul 28, 2013
Photo of kjkinsey
4.25/5  rDev +0.7%

kjkinsey, Jun 26, 2012
Photo of brentk56
4.23/5  rDev +0.2%
look: 5 | smell: 4.5 | taste: 4 | feel: 4.25 | overall: 4.25

Appearance: A beautiful pour, with a three-fingered ecru head; the auburn liquid is just a shade too dark to see through but the head leaves a curtain of lace

Smell: Caramel malt, dried fruit (dates and figs), brown sugar, apple, oak and spice cake flavors

Taste: Up front, the caramel, dried fruit and spice cake flavors blend nicely with a slightly vinous character adding complexity, in the middle; the finish displays some tart flavors, though the sweet tones that dominated the aroma and presented themselves, up front, linger underneath

Mouthfeel: Medium to full body with moderate to high carbonation

Overall: A nice take on the BSDA style by Unibroue; the tartness in the middle is an intriguing twist

brentk56, Jan 21, 2013
Photo of BEERchitect
4.35/5  rDev +3.1%
look: 4.5 | smell: 4 | taste: 4.5 | feel: 4 | overall: 4.5

The super spicy and toasty fruit character that Unibroue celebrates best are all on display in this 17 Grand Reserve. Few breweries achieve such character and drinkability, even the most highly regarded ones from Belgium.

The strong dark ale pours with a hazy appearance of brown rust with copper highlights. The highly effervescent beer shows a lot of zest as it releases a dense and creamy slight tanish head that stops shy of rocky proportions. Along with tremendous staying power, the foam laces the glass in sheets. ...very impressive!

Perfumy aromas wrap around a strong herbal component of lavender, rosemary, and chamomile. A ton of these spices, whether additions or derived by yeast, are the decorations that bring life to the underpinning of toasted malts, vinous wines, charred fruits, and freshly cracked black peppercorns.

The spicy dominance also plays out in taste as the medium malt richness and sweetness is quickly surplanted with grilled apples, dates, figs, and chestnuts. Sharper flavors of peppercorn, toast char, and alcohol gain intensity as the beer moves across mid palate and into finish. The spices continue to play on the flavor spread in a somewhat smoky and soapy way.

Medium bodied throughout, the beer's creamy malt texture is aided by carbonation that lightens the body but not in the highly effervescent champagne kind of way that I expect. Instead, the malty rich textures develop into a highly peppery, spicy, and alcohol warmth that dries the beer as the malty-dry mid palate digresses.

Even the tannin woods play on the flavor profile with a spicy oak taste and a somewhat dryish astringency that creates a slight powdery texture to accompany wood spice and sweetness. This Grand Reserve is a masterful beer that deserves much praise- certainly in the upper echelon of the Unibroue staple.

BEERchitect, Mar 27, 2012
Photo of Phyl21ca
3.95/5  rDev -6.4%
look: 4 | smell: 4 | taste: 4 | feel: 3.5 | overall: 4

Bottle: Poured a deep brown color ale with a large foamy head with good retention and some lacing. Aroma consists of spices (white pepper, coriander) with some notes of Unibroue yeast and butterscotch. Taste is also a mix between some Unibroue yeast with a great spice mix and some butterscotch malt. I thought it lacked some dry fruits characteristics and while carbonation was excellent it appears that the body is thinner then their usual offering.

Phyl21ca, Jan 11, 2012
Photo of jaydoc
4.25/5  rDev +0.7%

jaydoc, Feb 02, 2014
Photo of ygtbsm94
3.25/5  rDev -23%

ygtbsm94, May 05, 2012
Photo of Knapp85
3.5/5  rDev -17.1%

Knapp85, Nov 04, 2013
Photo of SocalKicks
4.25/5  rDev +0.7%

SocalKicks, May 31, 2013
Photo of oberon
4.03/5  rDev -4.5%
look: 4.5 | smell: 4 | taste: 4 | feel: 4 | overall: 4

I have to say it's been awhile since I have had a new Unibroue offering,back in the day I dranf alot of their offerings.Poured into a goblet a russet brown color with a nicely formed one finger off white head.Some phenolic spice and dark fruit in the nose.Yeasty and spiced phenols on the palate,the spice-like phenolic notes are big,some dark fruit and alcohol rounds out the palate.It's a good Belgian dark but I don't get much wood aged except in the finish wich is mild,in saying that it does meld well with the spiced yeasty notes of the beer.

oberon, Apr 30, 2012
Photo of emerge077
3.98/5  rDev -5.7%
look: 4.5 | smell: 4 | taste: 4 | feel: 3.5 | overall: 4

Sampled at the PRF BBQ tasting soiree, full pour into a tasting glass. Thanks to Marsupialized for the generous heavy pour early in the evening, and Peppers/EmpireStateTroopers for hosting!

Appears a murky mahogany brown, turbid with yeast, with cappucino stained foam.

Nutty malty aromas, dried fruit - raisin, currant, dates, some vanilla and oak traces. Flavors follow suit with a low level amount of oak in the background, dominant Belgian yeast lending clove and spice, candi sugar stickiness, and some residual dried fruit in the aftertaste. Full bodied, though it comes off a little thin in the finish. It does seem well suited for cellaring a year or two. A tasty BSDA, and it was nice to get a chance to try it.

emerge077, Jun 29, 2012
Photo of JAHMUR
3.75/5  rDev -11.1%

JAHMUR, Sep 02, 2013
Photo of biboergosum
4.35/5  rDev +3.1%
look: 4.5 | smell: 4 | taste: 4.5 | feel: 4 | overall: 4.5

750ml bottle, 2011 edition. A crazy-ass offering to find at the local liquor store monopoly concern, but, I guess I shouldn't complain. Ok, I will, but with a slight sidestep - what is it with these pseudo Champagne corks lately? I don't remember having to break out the pliers and corkscrew so often, and not that long ago. So get the hell off my lawn, while I'm at it.

This beer pours a hazy, dark ruby amber hue, with two fingers of silken foamy beige head, which leaves a solid wall of painted lace around the glass as it slowly ebbs away. Nice.

It smells of dark, juicy fruit - bruised banana, wet raisins, fig - Belgian yeast with that Canadian twist, caramel malt, somewhat boozy vanilla, a bit of astringent woody phenols, and earthy, musty hops. The taste is almost certainly Christmas cake-like - caramel and vanilla, a bit of sweet breadiness, soft baker's yeast, figs, raisins, apple and cherry chunks strewn throughout, all doused in some nice red wine essence, with the oaken woodiness and tannic astringency balancing out the underlying sugary notes beautifully. Sigh, more please.

The bubbles are present, functional, and quite knowledgeable about right of way, the body a hefty medium weight, and smooth enough amongst some yeasty, boozy tugging. It finishes rather sweet, the bready, caramel malt and attendant spices and fruit still holding sway, with the understated barrel character contributing just enough to help, and not overwhelm.

Erm, well, WOW! Barrel treatment with a subtle touch, for my favorite (by far) of Unibroue's anniversary offerings. What's not to like? Smooth, subtle, and beguiling. Je vous aime, je serai avec vous toujours.

biboergosum, Aug 16, 2012
Photo of zeff80
4.15/5  rDev -1.7%
look: 3.75 | smell: 4 | taste: 4.25 | feel: 4 | overall: 4.25

zeff80, Oct 27, 2014
Photo of StonedTrippin
4.1/5  rDev -2.8%
look: 4 | smell: 4 | taste: 4 | feel: 4 | overall: 4.5

these guys can do no wrong in my opinion, so this beer is obviously fantastic. it came at what i thought was a reasonable price at under 13 bucks for a big boy. it pours a rich mahogany maroon color with a very excited head rising to as tall as three inches in my tulip glass. it smells very oaky, and has notes of dark fruit, dried cherries, sauvignon grapes, and vanilla. the flavor is rich and fit for a king, with the fruit and yeast combining in a way that only unibroue can pull off. its deep and complex, lots of fruit but not too much sweet. the alcohol is very well hidden behind the curtain of autumnal flavors and oak. the wood in this beer is perfectly complimentary to the other flavors, its awesome. feel is heavier in body but somehow airy, partially due to the effervescent head. i like this a lot, and would have probably paid another four or five dollars for this bottle. id like to get another and cellar it just to see what happens, if i can be patient enough...

StonedTrippin, Sep 08, 2012
Photo of WVbeergeek
4.13/5  rDev -2.1%
look: 4.5 | smell: 4.5 | taste: 4 | feel: 4 | overall: 4

Bottled in 2011 #2011-167353, damn a 10% alcohol Unibroue aged on French Oak this looked interesting. Pours a beautiful murky deep amber with a muddled mahogany brown overcast, big khaki tan head floating thick about three fingers worth in my Tripel Karmeliet chalice. Nose brings out rich mild smoked character with hints of toasted oak, a sliced apple, plump raisin, plums make up the fruit malt base with spice pepper like quality in there going on. Flavors are so balanced with rich oak notes, a mild vanilla spiced character basically the spice additions and French oak staves they aged it on have blended beautifully with this ten percent alcohol dark Belgian style ale. Again spicy floral character within the spice collides with vanilla, toasted oak with a fruity malt base keeping things interesting big layers of raisins/apple, and rum soaked plum with caramelized sugars don't become cloying at any point with alcohol burning just enough to balance out the sweet qualities of this rich oak aged ale. Mouthfeel is effervescent, yet big bodied with a bit of booze that is cohesive within the dynamics that this beer offers big dry oak in the finish with a pleasant robust malt profile throughout each sip. I will also credit some of the dry qualities from the spice additions that Unibroue is so well known for. Overall I'm proud to say I've been drinking Uniibroue bieres since 2001, I'm glad I found them so early in my drinking career.

WVbeergeek, Jun 29, 2012
Photo of russpowell
3.93/5  rDev -6.9%
look: 4.5 | smell: 3.5 | taste: 4 | feel: 4 | overall: 4

Pours an effervescent brown/hazel with 3+ fingers of tan head. Superior head retention & above average lacing

S: Pears, Figs & a touch of treaclely booze. Some phenolic notes once warm

T: Follows the nose, some apricot as well, much dryness & a touch of dark candi-sugar up front. Smokey/peaty notes as this warms, figs, a bit of boozey raisin & a touch of brown sugar. Finishes, dry, warming, figgy & with a touch of treacle, nutmeg, cinnamon & raisin

MF: Fairly chewy, light carbonation. Carbonation picks up as this warms, along a general warming feel, but also thins out a bit

A ponderous beer, says it's best before 12-12-2016, I'm sure this will age nicely, not too shabby as it is now, but I was hoping for given its Grande Reserve handle...

russpowell, Apr 21, 2012
Photo of XmnwildX12
3.25/5  rDev -23%

XmnwildX12, May 08, 2014
Photo of oline73
4.19/5  rDev -0.7%
look: 4.5 | smell: 4.25 | taste: 4.25 | feel: 3.5 | overall: 4.25

Poured from the bottle into a Chimay goblet.

The beer pours a murky mahogany color with a finger of fluffy off white head. The head sticks around nicely. The small and taste are both super oaky. It's like drinking a dark Belgian ale in a workshop. There are some sweet sugar and dark fruit undertones in the smell. The flavor is more balanced, but still dominated by the oak. There is a nice dark fruit component and just a slight sweetness. There is a mild Belgian spice in the finish. The abv is not at all apparent. The mouthfeel is a bit on the thin side and the carbonation is quite smooth. The finish isn't as dry as I would expect given the oak level.

oline73, Feb 07, 2013
Photo of drabmuh
4/5  rDev -5.2%

drabmuh, Feb 16, 2013
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Unibroue 17 Grande Réserve from Unibroue
94 out of 100 based on 900 ratings.