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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

930 Ratings
THE BROS
-
no score

(send 'em beer!)
Ratings: 930
Reviews: 218
rAvg: 4.21
pDev: 11.88%
Wants: 69
Gots: 245 | FT: 15
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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Beer: Ratings & Reviews
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Ratings: 930 | Reviews: 218 | Display Reviews Only:
Photo of doughanson78
4.55/5  rDev +8.1%
look: 4.5 | smell: 4.5 | taste: 4.5 | feel: 5 | overall: 4.5

750ml bottle poured into a chalice.

A: Dark murky brown. Two finger off white head with excellent retention and lacing.

S: Figs, dates, dark cherries, and raisins. Some light citrusy notes. Big Belgian yeast aroma along with some clove mingling nicely with a subtle oak aroma. Alcohol is present but meshes well.

T: Big dark fruits throughout the mouth. Citrus isn't present in the flavor but the French oak really shines in the the taste. It mixes with a pepper/chili bite that might be 50% alcohol bite. Belgian yeast sits in the background of this complex brew. This will be phenomenal in a few years.

M: Full bodied. Medium high carbonation. Super creamy and buttery. Awesome.

O: The best of this style I've had, with second being Unibroue's Trois Pistoles. Love Unibroue. Going to pick up some more for the cellar for sure!!!

Photo of ryan1788a5
4.54/5  rDev +7.8%
look: 4.25 | smell: 4.5 | taste: 4.5 | feel: 4.5 | overall: 4.75

750ml bottle poured into a Unibroue chalice. Bottled in 2011.

A: Dark, cloudy brown on the pour. The creamy tan head retains very well and drops patchy gobs of foamy lacing here and there.

S: Caramel, bread pudding, almond. Toffee. Brown sugar. Cinnamon and white pepper. Yeasty and slightly musty. Dried figs and apple chips. Dry toasted oak and woody vanilla tie it all together. Remarkably complex and balanced.

T: Toffee, caramel, and bread pudding up front. Yeasty and slightly musty. Brown sugar. cinnamon, clove, and white pepper. Brown cocoa powder. Rum raisin, fig, and baked apples. Woody oak takes a delicate approach, drying the palate and adding complexity without calling too much attention to itself. The balance is superb. Finishes with tastes of bread pudding, brown sugar, and lightly tannic oak.

M: On the thicker side of medium bodied. Very creamy and smooth. Ample carbonation is soft rather than aggressive. Touch of soothing, warming alcohol. Very light astringency from the oak tannins.

O: This is everything I hoped it would be and more. A truly world-class Belgian Strong Dark ale. The balance is perfect, and the high level of complexity makes each sip a treat. One of the more refined beers I've come across. The French oak really makes it. Instantly a personal favorite.

Photo of Kuaff
4.53/5  rDev +7.6%
look: 4 | smell: 4.5 | taste: 4.5 | feel: 4.5 | overall: 4.75

A 2011 vintage bottle which I found, bought, brought home, stowed away in the cellar, and proceeded to pour into my snifter and thoughtfully sip on once it had cooled down to cellar temperature. Isn't that how your average American goes about acquiring and drinking beer...? No? Oh... well that's what I do. Guess I'ma weeeirdo.

It appears to have a two-finger bone white head and a dark and murky mahogany body.

Ooh, I smell spices! I'm not the most accurate spice detector, but I think I'm getting cinnamon, nutmeg, and cardamom (had to go and sniff some spices in the cabinet to identify a couple of those, hehehe). The smell also has green apples, raisins, and yeasty bread. So it basically smells like Christmas bread!

Jeez, it TASTES a lot like certain Christmas breads I've had too. There's some sourdough from the lees, and a definite tart grape juice taste. It's kind of fruity and refreshing, actually, which is something I can't say about most Belgian strong dark ales I've had. Alcohol is amazingly absent from the taste.

Keeping consistent with my description so far, I'll call the carbonation lively and "festive" (wee look at me I have Christmas spirit in July). Anyway, it suits the style.

Well, the only thing I can complain about really is the price. This is pretty much the most expensive beer I've ever bought, unfortunately. However, it IS quite enjoyable.

Photo of McShane
4.53/5  rDev +7.6%
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.

Thanks,

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

Photo of Jamesthebrit
4.53/5  rDev +7.6%
look: 5 | smell: 4.5 | taste: 4.5 | feel: 4.5 | overall: 4.5

A: Poured from a 750ml bottle with a champagne style stopper and cork. Bottle has info about the beer and it truely looks elegant. A gentle pour of this beer yeilds an explosive head that quickly fills up 3/4 of my glass which is frustraighting but at the same time impressive. The color is something unique it has bog like color to it, like it was light at one time but now its become darker. A hazy dark tan brown the is certainly like nothing I've seen before. Some reddish orange tints as well.

S: Sweet, oaky, woody, some citrus notes. Orange, a little musty. Quite a pleasing and complex smell.

T: Thats good.... thats really good. The taste of this beer really reflects the smell. An excellent balance of sweetness with more earthy flavors and they all develop at different times to really showcase themselves. The alcohol gives a little something something in the end but it fades quickly without being overwhelming.

M: Sits with a heavy body with only pleasing flavors developing. The carbonation, while not overwhelming does take some something away over time but overall very nice.

What a great beer this is. Old ales usually have a lot a good aspects but one usually dominates the others. This beer has a great balance of all elements. With the complex tastes and smells there is little more one could ask for in a beer.

Photo of Jim_Benz
4.51/5  rDev +7.1%
look: 4.5 | smell: 4 | taste: 4.75 | feel: 4.5 | overall: 4.5

Split a 750ml bottle (2012) with my wife at cellar temp, served in snifters.

A: Beautiful beer, dark amber, that produced a two inch off-white head on vigorous pour. Head dissipated over five minutes but maintained a thin coat over the surface almost until the finish. Didn't pay attention to the lacing.

S: I don't know; caramel, raison, bread, a tiny bit of roast? My nose isn't that great, but it seemed kind of indistinct. It smelled like I expected it to smell but subtler; inviting but it didn't exactly blow me away. Not that it needs to.

T: It's a one-year old bottle, so very smooth. The flavors follow the nose--caramel, raison, dried fig, dark bread--but very nuanced, almost delicate, surprisingly laid-back. I really enjoyed this beer, but I expected a stronger burst of flavors. It's very seductive, but coy. The alcohol was well-hidden, and the oak extremely well-integrated.

M: Silky, toward the lighter end of a medium body, not at all cloying or overly sweet. Refreshing, really, and very easy to drink. Carbonation was perfect.

O: It's a little pricey but worth every penny IMO. I was surprised by its very subdued smell and taste, but it really was delicious. Less estery than I expected for a Belgian style ale, but that was almost a plus. Really pleased with this beer, but not blown away. Which is fine--a really good ale doesn't always need to show off.

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4.5/5  rDev +6.9%

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4.5/5  rDev +6.9%

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4.5/5  rDev +6.9%

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4.5/5  rDev +6.9%

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4.5/5  rDev +6.9%

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4.5/5  rDev +6.9%

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4.5/5  rDev +6.9%

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4.5/5  rDev +6.9%

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4.5/5  rDev +6.9%

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4.5/5  rDev +6.9%

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4.5/5  rDev +6.9%

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4.5/5  rDev +6.9%

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Unibroue 17 Grande Réserve from Unibroue
94 out of 100 based on 930 ratings.