1. The wait is over! Download the BeerAdvocate app on iTunes or Google Play now.
  2. Get 12 issues / year of BeerAdvocate magazine for only $9.99!

Grottenbier - Brouwerij St. Bernardus NV

Not Rated.
GrottenbierGrottenbier

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

267 Ratings
THE BROS
62
poor

(view ratings)
Ratings: 267
Reviews: 202
rAvg: 3.77
pDev: 13.26%
Wants: 21
Gots: 11 | FT: 0
Brewed by:
Brouwerij St. Bernardus NV visit their website
Belgium

Style | ABV
Belgian Dark Ale |  6.50% ABV

Availability: Year-round

Notes/Commercial Description:
From Pierre Celis, brewed at Brouwerij St. Bernardus.

(Beer added by: Todd on 09-19-2003)
Beer: Ratings & Reviews
Sort by:  Recent | Likes | High | Low | Top Raters | Read the Alström Bros Beer Reviews and Beer Ratings of Grottenbier Alström Bros
Ratings: 267 | Reviews: 202 | Display Reviews Only:
Photo of dcmchew
3.75/5  rDev -0.5%

Photo of falloutsnow
3.66/5  rDev -2.9%
look: 5 | smell: 3.25 | taste: 3.75 | feel: 3.75 | overall: 3.5

From:

An interesting blend between what seems to be a Belgian dark amber and a Brettanomyces-flecked, young Flemish red, St. Bernardus' resurrection of Pierre Celis' Grottenbier recipe is an interesting mix of typical Belgian phenols and Special B malt flavors with hints of cellar-like complexity and sourness. This was pleasant fresh, and could be more interesting when aged, which might allow the obviously young "wild" character to develop further.

Pours a 2.5cm tall head of beige to light tan-colored bubbles, small to medium in size, giving a . Retention is excellent, the head never really fading, forcing the drinker to take a sip, the lipids and chemicals in which reduce the head to a 0.2cm cap resting atop the body of the beer for the duration of the session. Lacing is also excellent, with thick webs and arrays of dots clinging to the sides of the glass. Beer is a very dark amber color, with light bringing out slightly brighter amber hues. Carbonation visible streaming along the sides of the glass, substantial in number and fairly active.

Aroma is slightly mild, light Brettanomyces "funk" and cellar mustiness, caramel malt sweetness, slight raspberry and cherry. Subtle, but pleasant, and complex enough to be interesting over the course of a 750ml bottle.

Overall flavor palette is richly malty, with dark caramel and light roast characters with a hint of Brettanomyces complexity, cellar-like mustiness, and vague fruity tartness. Opens on front of palate with lightly roasted and dark caramel malt characters and some sweetness, bread, anise, and slightly spicy phenols. Mid-palate of caramel malt characters, hints of lightly roasted malt, anise, ripe plums, slightly spicy phenols, faint tart raspberries and cherries, light Brettanomyces, extra mild tartness. Back of palate finds slightly stronger tartness, anise, spicy phenols, cellar mustiness, and a bit of mushroom. Aftertaste of lightly roasted malt and dark caramel malt characters, bread, with hints of residual light tartness and anise.

Beer is medium in body, with high levels of carbonation, leading to a fizzy, then softly foamy mouthfeel. Closes dry, with little stickiness remaining on the palate and lips.

Photo of tzunoi
4.75/5  rDev +26%

Photo of FLima
4.26/5  rDev +13%
look: 4 | smell: 4 | taste: 4.25 | feel: 4.5 | overall: 4.5

After being reserved for a while it was opened with 10 month left to maturity.
Amber copper color with a thick three fingers off-white head with good retention and leaving laces. Got murky brown after pouring residual yeast.
Aroma with a nice funkiness going on, notes of Belgian yeast, nutty malt and lemon.
An incredible fast mutating flavor with a nice tartness, condimented yeast, ginger, figs, roasted malt, umami from Shitake mushrooms, licorice, vanilla, green apples and plums. Dry aftertaste and mildly bitter.
Medium body with a somewhat effervescent carbonation and acidity sensation.
Truly fantastic beer and very enigmatic. You have to swiftly chase its multiple taste facets. Though, ain’t for all beer drinkers. While drinking I did some research given my rates were off (much higher), but rest in peace after knowing, no wonder, to be one of favorites by the beer hunter.

Photo of vinicole
3.25/5  rDev -13.8%

Photo of tbeer40
3.5/5  rDev -7.2%

Photo of DutchBeerDrinker
3.5/5  rDev -7.2%

Photo of tom10101
3.25/5  rDev -13.8%

Photo of ViveLaChouffe
3.75/5  rDev -0.5%

Photo of MystikCelt
4/5  rDev +6.1%

Photo of Marius
3/5  rDev -20.4%

Photo of WOLFGANG
3.75/5  rDev -0.5%

Photo of ystazi
3.75/5  rDev -0.5%

Photo of desint
3/5  rDev -20.4%

Photo of Slatetank
3.75/5  rDev -0.5%

Photo of GRUUMSH
4/5  rDev +6.1%

Photo of mick303
3.86/5  rDev +2.4%
look: 4 | smell: 4.25 | taste: 3.75 | feel: 3.75 | overall: 3.75

330 mL bottle with freshness date, poured into a tulip glass produced a large creamy tannish head, retention is decent, but it leaves a nice frothy film and good lacing. The beer is a dark ruby brown, slightly muted, some visible carbonation. 4

S- strong notes of caramel malt, spicy with slight booze kick, a strong yeast note. Subtle clove, plum, woodshop smell, some malty sweetness, notes of cinnamon, christmas cake. After it mellows it becomes really nice and soft, not a lot of bitterness but some pepper and aged chili spice. Quite complex and balanced. 4.25

T- a pretty big malty body with spice and chili notes initially, lemon zest, hazelnut, then more astringent yeast. Aged caramel, wool blankets. It has an initially lightness then more of a tartness, lemon meringue, transitions quite smoothly. Ends very dry, with a bittersweet caramel, and a bit of alcohol. Warming all the way down, lingering smooth spice. Pretty good, balance is alright but falls short in complexity. 3.75

M- Moderate maltiness with a smooth consistency, moderate carbonation, a coating prickle of yeast lingers with a dry malty finish. Some slight alcohol presence but this mostly enhances the malty and dry yeasty aspects of this beer. 3.75

Pretty enjoyable beer, there are a few aspects it could improve. A bit much carbonation, it is quite well balanced, though a bit tart/spicy on finish. Together it isn't the most memorable beer, nice Dark Ale with a fair bit of yeasty presence that has some issues incorporating into the beer, sometimes feel thin. I wouldn't rush to get this again, but its nice nonetheless.

Photo of BierMeJohn
4/5  rDev +6.1%

Photo of Elbrownbag
3.25/5  rDev -13.8%

Photo of innominat
2.5/5  rDev -33.7%

Photo of Ciocanelu
3.5/5  rDev -7.2%

Photo of uturn
3.75/5  rDev -0.5%

Photo of stereosforgeeks
3.75/5  rDev -0.5%

Photo of safaricook
3.5/5  rDev -7.2%

Photo of His_Royal_Hoppiness
1.5/5  rDev -60.2%

Grottenbier from Brouwerij St. Bernardus NV
85 out of 100 based on 267 ratings.