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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

797 Ratings
THE BROS
-
no score

(send 'em beer!)
Ratings: 797
Reviews: 198
rAvg: 4.22
pDev: 11.61%
Wants: 59
Gots: 195 | 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: 797 | Reviews: 198 | Display Reviews Only:
Photo of beernads
beernads

Florida

3.75/5  rDev -11.1%

02-08-2013 09:54:34 | More by beernads
Photo of kojevergas
kojevergas

Texas

3.48/5  rDev -17.5%
look: 4 | smell: 4 | taste: 3.5 | feel: 3 | overall: 3

750 ml brown glass bottle with hood and wire cap over a cork served into a Guinness goblet in me gaff in low altitude Los Angeles, California. Expectations are high given its current ratings and the brewery - which I usually like. Bottled in 2011. ABV confirmed as 10.00%. Best before date 12-12-2016. Reviewed live. Acquired at Red Carpet Liquor in Glendale, California. I don't recall the cost.

Served refrigerator cold and allowed to warm over the course of consumption. Side-poured with standard vigor as no carbonation issues are anticipated.

I used pliers to remove the cork, yielding a satisfying pop indicative of solid carbonation.

A: Pours a four finger head of beige colour, nice cream, nice thickness, and incredible retention for the high ABV - at least five minutes. Colour is a semitransparent dark amber. Fairly translucent.

Sm: Quite yeasty, with noticeable oak, dry white wine, a vague hint of what might be peach, spice, vanilla, and clean malts. A masterfully subtle, mild strength aroma.

T: A clean malt foundation backed by a nice oak tone, with lees and yeast at the forefront. Spices aid the balance. Some vanilla - especially on the climax, and hints of cacao about the climax and finish. No alcohol comes through in the taste - which is quite an accomplishment. No white wine; I may have been mistaken about that note. Light cream on the open. Reminds me of a witbier somehow. The yeast is delightfully layered, with some earthy, some spicy, and some biscuity. Masterfully subtle and quite complex. Exceptionally well balanced. I like it, but it's a touch too sweet, lessening the drinkability.

Mf: Fizzy, slightly coarse, and wet. Too thick. Adequately carbonated. Something's off about the mouthfeel, preventing it from complementing the flavours well. It just doesn't feel right. Light on the palate.

Dr: Absurdly drinkable for the high ABV, but it'll be difficult to kill this bottle. The sweetness wears away on me, and I find myself getting tired of the beer over time. I doubt I'd get it again. If I had it again, I'd want an aged version. Best consumed in smaller quantities. Not Unibroue's best beer by any means, but enjoyable.

B-

Serving type: bottle

04-15-2012 04:33:56 | More by kojevergas
Photo of XmnwildX12
XmnwildX12

Minnesota

3.25/5  rDev -23%

05-08-2014 01:17:54 | More by XmnwildX12
Photo of rhoadsrage
rhoadsrage

Illinois

4.13/5  rDev -2.1%
look: 4.5 | smell: 4 | taste: 4 | feel: 4 | overall: 4.5

(Served in a Chalice)
bottled on 2011
A- This beer pours a walnut brown body that glows at the base and has a boiling microcarbonation that supports a thick luscious head of beige foam.

S- The well blended aroma has notes of brown sugar and soft french oak some nice yeasty ester almost like dried dark fruit in the finish.

T- The dark sugar notes have a spicy phenolic taste to the finish that is slightly dry. There is a mellow vanilla like oak hint and some clove notes come through as it opens. There are some slightly fruity ester qualities and a nutty note as the beer opens up aswell.

M- This beer has a medium mouthfeel with a creamy texture and a well hidden alcohol heat.

O- This beer is simple yet elegant with lots of subtle flavors working together. This makes it hard to describe aswell. Very nice beer.

Serving type: bottle

07-02-2012 13:10:28 | More by rhoadsrage
Photo of jdhilt
jdhilt

New Hampshire

3.94/5  rDev -6.6%
look: 3.75 | smell: 4 | taste: 4 | feel: 3.5 | overall: 4

Pours a two-finger cream head that fades slowly leaving some lace. Hazy brown color. Light carbonation and medium bodied. Dark fruit nose and flavor is semi-sweet dark fruit and oak. Some yeastiness in finish. High ABV is hidden. Good dark ale but Unibroue's Trois Pistoles is better and cheaper. $11.99 for a caged and corked 750ml bottle from The Meat House Pembroke, NH.

Serving type: bottle

02-17-2013 23:41:51 | More by jdhilt
Photo of Zorro
Zorro

California

4.23/5  rDev +0.2%
look: 4 | smell: 4 | taste: 4.5 | feel: 4 | overall: 4

Chill hazed brown ale with a small tan colored head.

Smells sweet and spicy with a scent of coriander and ginger with some brown sugar. Molasses and some cardamom.

Starts out sweet and fruity with an apple butter preserves flavor. Apple, cinnamon, ginger and some clove in the flavor. Slight whiskey flavor and faint vanilla taste.

Mouthfeel is full.

Tasty beer, I was actually expecting a Strong Pale Ale. Solid beer.

Serving type: bottle

02-04-2013 00:18:34 | More by Zorro
Photo of zestar
zestar

California

4.25/5  rDev +0.7%

07-01-2014 09:11:36 | More by zestar
Photo of Wasatch
Wasatch

Utah

4.1/5  rDev -2.8%
look: 3.75 | smell: 4 | taste: 4.25 | feel: 4 | overall: 4

750ml
Caged/Corked
Bottled In: 2011
Best Before: 12-12-2016

Poured into a chalice a nice dark grape color, nice carbonation, with a little fizzy off-white head, with very minimal sticky lacing left behind. The nose is malty, with some nice yeast notes, plums, figs, grapes, and raisins. The taste is very nice, malty, yeasty, with lots of dark fruit goodness. The ABV is hidden very well with this brew. Medium body. Overall another very nice brew from Unibroue.

Serving type: bottle

12-22-2013 20:54:49 | More by Wasatch
Photo of biegaman
biegaman

Ontario (Canada)

4.25/5  rDev +0.7%
look: 4 | smell: 4.5 | taste: 4 | feel: 4.5 | overall: 4.5

Unibroue 17 Grande Réserve is perfectly clear, a fact hard to appreciate given the beer's dark, prune-like colour. Hold it into the light, however, and it reveals itself to be practically tie-dyed with all shades of purple and ruby. There's no black here. If looking for head, all you'll find is whatever foam made its way safely to the outskirts.

The bouquet is perfumed like a rose and has a coriander-like air, rich molasses sweetness and just a hint of ash from the French oak barrels. I detect a dried orange peel pithiness, though the beer's fruitiness might better be described by raisin, plum, dried cherry, fig or prune - take your pick. There's no wrong answer. Just add brown sugar.

The toasty flavor is almost truffle-like in both its meatiness and earthiness. The beer essentially drinks like a roasted Portobello burger, or at least would if not for the sweet-savory tastes of plum pudding and rum-raisin that share the flavor. There's no overlooking the dark fruits, molasses sweetness, and peppery, clove-like spice.

For all the caramelized sugar and syrup-like qualities, it's a wonder the beer never becomes cloying. This is even more astounding once you factor in the 10% alcohol. The fact that this is so approachable, even once losing its chill, is a testament to a generously malted, super enticing flavor profile that is as balanced as it is complex.

The aftertaste is underscored by a cola-like sweetness that sticks like the underlining of a wet bathing suit. It is thick but lush with floral features like honey. The peppery spice is impossible to overlook, despite all the dark rum sweetness, but is made more palatable by the a dry oak wood finish and remnant flavors of plum and grape.

Unibroue 17 Grande Réserve, like the best examples of Belgian strong dark ales, has a complexity that even Stephen Hawking would have trouble getting his head around. It is somehow simultaneously sweet, spicy, savory and fruity. Strong yet easy to drink. Like so many Unibroue products, this can hold its own with any of the heavyweights in Belgium.

Serving type: bottle

05-26-2012 18:15:45 | More by biegaman
Photo of superspak
superspak

Michigan

4.48/5  rDev +6.2%
look: 5 | smell: 4.5 | taste: 4.5 | feel: 4 | overall: 4.5

750 ml bottle into signature tulip glass, bottled on 12/12/2011. Pours very hazy dark reddish brown color with a nice 2 finger dense and fluffy light khaki head with fantastic retention, that reduces to a nice cap that lasts. Nice thick soapy lacing clings on the glass, with plenty of carbonation streaming up retaining the head. Aromas of big raisin, prune, fig, apple, pear, molasses, brown sugar, toast, toffee, caramel, herbal, banana, pepper, clove, cinnamon, and yeast earthiness. Fantastic aromas with big complexity and great balance of malt and fruity esters. Taste of big raisin, prune, fig, molasses, brown sugar, toffee, toast, herbal, banana, pepper, clove, cinnamon, light oak, and yeast earthiness. Lingering notes of dark fruits, molasses, brown sugar, caramel, toast, toffee, herbal, banana, pepper, clove, cinnamon, oak, and yeast earthiness on the finish for a while. Fantastic balance and complexity of dark malt, spice, and fruity esters; with zero cloying sweetness present after the finish. Medium-high carbonation and medium-full bodied; with a creamy, slick, earthy, and lightly prickly mouthfeel that is great. Alcohol is extremely well hidden with only a slight warming noticed well after the finish. Overall this is an incredible Belgian strong dark ale! Big complexity and balance of malt and fruity esters; and dangerously smooth to sip on. An absolutely top notch offering all around.

Serving type: bottle

02-27-2013 05:15:06 | More by superspak
Photo of brandoman63
brandoman63

Illinois

3.75/5  rDev -11.1%

05-10-2014 22:32:14 | More by brandoman63
Photo of drewone
drewone

California

4/5  rDev -5.2%

05-21-2012 02:29:09 | More by drewone
Photo of Mebuzzard
Mebuzzard

Colorado

4.25/5  rDev +0.7%

07-29-2013 07:29:13 | More by Mebuzzard
Photo of smakawhat
smakawhat

Maryland

3.64/5  rDev -13.7%
look: 3.75 | smell: 4 | taste: 3.5 | feel: 3.75 | overall: 3.5

Poured from the bottle into a wine like snifter glass. Vintage 2011 Much thanks to the DC bottle share.

Sample pour provides a real creamy tan head, but a very muddy murky brown body, not much else.

Nose fills with large creme brulee sweetness. Sticky toffee, with a little bit of Belgian sucrose and raisin like sweetness. Oak angle on this is not that noticeable.

Extremely fleeting palate. Slightly watery mouthfeel for a barrel aged beer, and particularly a Belgian Dark. Mild faint raisin quality and some faint oak toasty qualities. Sweetness hinted on the nose doesn't come through in the palate with not much flavor.

Overall even for a Belgian dark and particularly a barrel aged one the qualities on this really seem to be missing and toned down.

Serving type: bottle

06-23-2013 02:27:28 | More by smakawhat
Photo of Kelp
Kelp

New Hampshire

4.25/5  rDev +0.7%

03-24-2013 02:45:03 | More by Kelp
Photo of sendbeer
sendbeer

Georgia

4.5/5  rDev +6.6%

04-14-2013 12:37:41 | More by sendbeer
Photo of Tone
Tone

Missouri

4.24/5  rDev +0.5%
look: 4.25 | smell: 4.25 | taste: 4.5 | feel: 3.5 | overall: 4

Pours a cloudy brown color. 1/2 inch head of an off-white color. Great retention and great lacing. Smells of alcohol, sweet malt, spices, dark citrus, slight hops, hint of cherry, and a hint of grass. Fits the style of a Belgian Strong Dark Ale. Mouth feel is sharp and crisp, with an average carbonation level. Tastes of sweet malt, alcohol, dark citrus, yeast, hint of hops, hint of pale malt, and slight spice. Overall, good appearance, aroma, blend, and body.

Serving type: bottle

07-28-2013 02:48:08 | More by Tone
Photo of THECPJ
THECPJ

Delaware

4.25/5  rDev +0.7%

07-04-2012 20:33:38 | More by THECPJ
Photo of Derek
Derek

British Columbia (Canada)

3.9/5  rDev -7.6%
look: 4.5 | smell: 4.5 | taste: 3.5 | feel: 4 | overall: 4

I thought the original 17 Anniversary was a bit spicy, this one was the same, but not quite as phenolic.

Very bubbly, pours with a huge head. Good retention, leaves a bit of lace.

Spicy, boozy aroma prepares you for the taste. Alcohol is very forward. I think this one could definitely benefit from some age.

Well-attenuated, highly carbonated, dry finish.

It'd be interesting with some age on it, or back-to-back with the original for comparison.

Serving type: bottle

01-14-2012 01:56:50 | More by Derek
Photo of dirtylou
dirtylou

Washington

4.3/5  rDev +1.9%
look: 4.5 | smell: 4 | taste: 4.5 | feel: 4.5 | overall: 4

750ml bottle

split and paired with a NY strip, hen of the woods shrooms and seabeans. #northwest

appearance: dark chestnut-garnet body, thick creamy beige head with strong lace

smell: earthy, figs, dried cherries, brown sugar, a touch of smoke

taste: lovely - brown sugar, dates, figs, roasted nuts, maple, dark malt, oak, a fair amount of spice.

mouthfeel: light and lively, well carbonated

overall: great stuff - no surprise from unibroue

Serving type: bottle

04-23-2012 02:59:06 | More by dirtylou
Photo of afsdan
afsdan

Colorado

4.5/5  rDev +6.6%

04-10-2014 00:05:27 | More by afsdan
Photo of xnicknj
xnicknj

Pennsylvania

4.25/5  rDev +0.7%

06-04-2013 12:11:30 | More by xnicknj
Photo of rolltide8425
rolltide8425

Pennsylvania

4.75/5  rDev +12.6%

12-20-2012 22:58:39 | More by rolltide8425
Photo of wordemupg
wordemupg

Alberta (Canada)

4.48/5  rDev +6.2%
look: 4 | smell: 4.5 | taste: 4.5 | feel: 4.5 | overall: 4.5

750ml corked and caged bottle poured into tulip 1/5/12 thanks liamt07 for the bottle

A dark drown with dark amber highlights when held to the light, two fingers of tan foam has great retention and leaves some random lace

S brown sugar both crystal and burnt, woody yeast, raisin, faint booze but not 10%, there's some over-ripe candied banana and some fortified wine on a deep whiff, smells great with a nice sweet malty complexity with the wood and yeast adding to it even further

T a little more fruity then the nose with slightly more booze but still well concealed for the strength, woody finish and slightly spicy, still everything I smell with less candied banana

M creams up the instant it enters your mouth without being foam, not much heat but there's just a little, impressive all things considered, long finish of wet wood and brown sugar

O I don't have a whole lot to complain about while I'm drinking this one, its drinking great today and I'm sure it would age well too

Unibroue continues to impress me with this brew, great complexity, well concealed liquor, and it smells and tastes great. I preferred this to the aged original 17 I just had last week. It's my understanding that this on will come to Alberta in the future and I'll be buying several to age if it dose, for now I'm thanking liamt07 yet again for the opportunity

Serving type: bottle

05-02-2012 06:14:13 | More by wordemupg
Photo of liamt07
liamt07

Ontario (Canada)

4.15/5  rDev -1.7%
look: 4 | smell: 4 | taste: 4 | feel: 4.5 | overall: 4.5

Bottle shared by Steve as part of the QuadShowdown. 750ml into some tulips, 2011 re-release.

Poured a deep mahogany, lightly purplish. A big cream coloured head is formed. Nose has some light grape, dark fruits, sugary with a slight vanilla note. Taste has alcohol soaked dark fruits, dark syrupy and lightly sugary notes, Unibroue house yeast is completely evident here. Almost reminiscent of Trois Pistoles in some senses. Light and active carbonation upfront but smooths out as the sip progresses (something I find with all Unibroue beers). Very nice but not exceptional. Not alot of the oak aging is evident here, and if it is, it must be very subtle.

Serving type: bottle

01-03-2012 02:44:30 | More by liamt07
Unibroue 17 Grande Réserve from Unibroue
94 out of 100 based on 797 ratings.