1. Extreme Beer Fest tickets go on sale Sat, Sep 27 @ Noon EDT.
  2. The wait is over! Download the BeerAdvocate app on iTunes or Google Play now.
  3. Get 12 issues / year of BeerAdvocate magazine for only $9.99!

Brainless Belgian-Style Golden Ale - Epic Brewing Company

Not Rated.
Brainless Belgian-Style Golden AleBrainless Belgian-Style Golden Ale

Displayed for educational use only; do not reuse.
BA SCORE
85
very good

155 Ratings
THE BROS
-
no score

(send 'em beer!)
Ratings: 155
Reviews: 57
rAvg: 3.76
pDev: 10.9%
Wants: 11
Gots: 10 | FT: 0
Brewed by:
Epic Brewing Company visit their website
Utah, United States

Style | ABV
Belgian Strong Pale Ale |  8.70% ABV

Availability: Rotating

Notes/Commercial Description:
Brainless Belgian-Style Golden Ale is has a rich and complex malt flavor balanced with a little bit of spicy noble hops and strong influences of fermentation esters from the Belgian yeast used. Various Belgian like Rock Candies, hops and grains are employed to express variations within the style. Deceivingly drinkable, some liken theses ales to Devil sneaking up on you, so consume responsibly.

(Beer added by: JohnGalt1 on 06-10-2010)
Beer: Ratings & Reviews
Sort by:  Usefulness | Recent | High | Low | Top Raters
Ratings: 155 | Reviews: 57 | Display Reviews Only:
Photo of trxxpaxxs
3.75/5  rDev -0.3%

trxxpaxxs, Jul 08, 2014
Photo of Phelps
3.1/5  rDev -17.6%
look: 3 | smell: 3 | taste: 3 | feel: 4 | overall: 3

Poured into a shaker pint at Tops.

Brainless is part of Epic's Elevated Series, made to showcase variability within a given beer style -- in this case, the deceptively drinkable Belgian golden strong ale, which Epic has modified with light Belgian candy sugar and flaked oats, among other additions.

This changeability follows even in Epic's release of the same beer, with the brewers apparently tweaking their recipes by varying the malt and hop bills as well as the ABV every few batches. The release I sampled was Brainless' 16th, brewed in February with fewer Saaz hops than previous iterations, which the brewers claim allows the spice of the other two varietals -- Tettnang and Premiant -- to prevail.

A pale straw gold brew with absolute clarity, Brainless makes an attempt at classic Belgian aromas with notes of pear and apple juice, white pepper and clove, while some tangy grain looms in the background, throwing things just a bit off-kilter.

Sweet pear syrup, apple juice, crackers and some spices appear in the flavor as well, accented by peppery carbonation amidst an expansive, pillowy body. The sugary flavors do a commendable job of hiding the alcohol content, but subtle hints of the booze poke through and become more noticeable as heat warms the chest. Swallow and a gentle dryness will attempt to cleanse the palate, but with limited success -- this is saccharine stuff.

Despite all the grey matter that went into making it, Brainless is aptly named -- in that you don't need a brain to enjoy it. It's refreshing enough, but a bit too sweet and absolutely lacking the complexity of more established Belgian ales. It may appeal to the masses, but it won't inspire deep thought.

I might try Brainless with seafood -- garlic-spiced mussels or juicy crab cakes would work well. For dessert, pair it with a sugar cookie or two. Brainless is already sweet, but its spicy yeast will temper the cookie's sugary qualities somewhat, while the energetic carbonation chases flavors away and prepares you for the next sip.

Phelps, Jun 23, 2011
Photo of Lukass
3.75/5  rDev -0.3%

Lukass, Sep 15, 2013
Photo of CelticAleMan
2.75/5  rDev -26.9%

CelticAleMan, Aug 09, 2013
Photo of yemenmocha
3.28/5  rDev -12.8%
look: 3.5 | smell: 3.5 | taste: 3 | feel: 3.5 | overall: 3.5

Pours a rather luminous golden color with slight haze. Nose is bready & fruity, some esters too. Palate is much fuller bodied than expected for what I thought a Belgian blonde would have ( the oats perhaps). Syrupy pear fruity flavors take over for me, candy sugar like in witbiers, and brings to mind triples as well. Finishes sweet and slight alcohol warmth.

yemenmocha, Jul 09, 2011
Photo of tbeq00
4/5  rDev +6.4%

tbeq00, Sep 22, 2012
Photo of zeledonia
3.98/5  rDev +5.9%
look: 4.5 | smell: 4 | taste: 4 | feel: 3.5 | overall: 4

Release #16, brewed 26 February 2011. Picked up after Epic just recently started distributing to Minnesota.

Pours a medium golden color, rather enchanting IMO, clear, with streams of bubbles rising up through the glass. Two-finger whitish head fades fairly quickly, but leaves loads of sticky lacing.

Smell is half soft vegetable hops, rather earthy, and half mildly spiced Belgian yeast. It's a good combo, but it needs something more. More oomph, more complexity.

Taste is maltier and more straightforward than the smell. Quite sweet, with the same spice, but not as potent here as it was in the smell. Though tingly peppercorn spice comes on strong as the rest of the flavors fade, bringing some more exciting dimensions to the beer. In fact, this is the highlight for me - that spice kick that comes through late. It powers through the finish, lingering delightfully on the tongue.

Mouthfeel is quite sticky, medium-heavy body. It's a little like drinking honey - it feels that viscous and sugary. Carbonation is definitely on the low side, and I think more would improve the beer. Finish is lasting.

Not the most complex Belgian-style ale, but pretty darn good. The spice character brought out by the yeast is solid and adds a lot to the flavor. Without that, it would be a rather dull slug of sweet pale malts.

zeledonia, Aug 10, 2011
Photo of JISurfer
3.5/5  rDev -6.9%

JISurfer, May 01, 2012
Photo of MacStinson
3.75/5  rDev -0.3%

MacStinson, Jun 05, 2013
Photo of savagepm
4/5  rDev +6.4%

savagepm, Dec 29, 2011
Photo of rangerred
4.15/5  rDev +10.4%
look: 3.5 | smell: 4 | taste: 4.5 | feel: 3.5 | overall: 4

Served on draft.

Arrived a clear straw yellow with thin fizzy white head.

Smells extremely malty. Lots of biscuit going on with some banana character.

The taste is very malty almost to the point of being chalky. There are notes of clove and banana from the yeast but malt takes center stage.

Overall I enjoyed this beer. It is more malty than other Belgian Pale Ales I have had but that's good with me. It definitely drinks easier than a 8.3% beer.

rangerred, Dec 24, 2011
Photo of ralphw56
4/5  rDev +6.4%

ralphw56, Jun 08, 2013
Photo of Eric908
4/5  rDev +6.4%

Eric908, Oct 16, 2013
Photo of Etan
3.68/5  rDev -2.1%
look: 4 | smell: 4 | taste: 3.5 | feel: 4 | overall: 3.5

Poured from a 22oz bottle, batch 19.

A: Pours an absolutely clear light gold with a decent white head and some lacing.

S: Strong yeast, lemon, pale malt and bright grain. Very sugary, slight funk.

T: Sugary, stone fruit, rice-like grain flavor, subtle solvent alcohol behind. Doughy and fruity, with a bit of a hoppy herbal note lingering on the end.

M: Light tingly carbonation, medium-bodied.

O: Not bad, but the alcohol shows a bit too much and the grain profile isn't rich enough.

Etan, Jun 23, 2012
Photo of HarmonMW
4.75/5  rDev +26.3%

HarmonMW, Mar 13, 2012
Photo of doucmehu
3.43/5  rDev -8.8%
look: 4 | smell: 3 | taste: 3.5 | feel: 3.5 | overall: 3.5

Bottle purchased at the brewery a couple weeks ago, a generous gift from Dave's road trip case-o-bombers he gave me. He says it was a cool joint.

A: Nice golden straw glows underneath a small white head that sticks around for quite a while. Minimal lacing.

S: Soft and mellow Belgian yeast and malt, hint of spice and cereal grain.

T: Some dark fruit esters, Belgian yeast and bready malt, mild zesty spice, coriander. Nothing overpowering, well blended flavors.

M: Nice carbonation, smooth and buttery finish, some alcohol presence.

O: A solid Belgian style ale, definitely a more approachable, entry level offering as opposed to a true Belgian like Duvel. Everything is there, just slightly toned down.

doucmehu, Apr 24, 2012
Photo of NickThePyro
3.75/5  rDev -0.3%

NickThePyro, Mar 21, 2013
Photo of millelacsmark
3.75/5  rDev -0.3%

millelacsmark, Jul 06, 2012
Photo of wisrarebeer
4/5  rDev +6.4%
look: 4 | smell: 4 | taste: 4 | feel: 4 | overall: 4

22oz bottle, ABV on label states 8.8%

A: nice golden-yellow color, clear, with good frothy head
S: reminiscent of a Belgian golden ale or tripel with yeastiness and malt, medium nose, alcohol noticeable, fruity
T: didn't know what to expect but surprisingly true-to-type, reminded me a bit more of a tripel due to alcohol which was definitely in the taste, heat from EtOH is there, somewhat cloying too
M: creamy probably from body and cloying
O: a good beer

wisrarebeer, Jul 15, 2011
Photo of NateMac13
3.5/5  rDev -6.9%

NateMac13, Apr 26, 2014
Photo of JMUbrewz
3.75/5  rDev -0.3%

JMUbrewz, Jun 12, 2013
Photo of Tom-Peters
3.75/5  rDev -0.3%

Tom-Peters, Jun 25, 2014
Photo of blindpiggie
3.75/5  rDev -0.3%

blindpiggie, Oct 23, 2012
Photo of tedho21
3.25/5  rDev -13.6%

tedho21, May 19, 2014
Photo of DerwinWentworth
3.5/5  rDev -6.9%

DerwinWentworth, Mar 27, 2012
Brainless Belgian-Style Golden Ale from Epic Brewing Company
85 out of 100 based on 155 ratings.