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Gavroche - Brasserie De Saint-Sylvestre

Not Rated.

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

385 Ratings

(view ratings)
Ratings: 385
Reviews: 231
rAvg: 3.79
pDev: 13.19%
Wants: 15
Gots: 15 | FT: 0
Brewed by:
Brasserie De Saint-Sylvestre visit their website

Style | ABV
Bière de Garde |  8.50% ABV

Availability: Year-round

Notes/Commercial Description:
No notes at this time.

(Beer added by: BeerAdvocate on 01-07-2001)
Beer: Ratings & Reviews
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Ratings: 385 | Reviews: 231 | Display Reviews Only:
Photo of xylophonica
3.13/5  rDev -17.4%
look: 3.5 | smell: 3.5 | taste: 3 | feel: 3 | overall: 3

Poured into a La Trappe signature glass.

A - Massive head; the bottle erupted when opened. Good finger or more of actual head on top, retention solid as well. Darkish-golden amber colour.

S - Dark liqueurs. Oak based aromas such as port, red wine and cherry dominate. Very woody. Cherry aroma seems to be more prominent as it's drunk.

T - Cross a dark berry flavour (such as cherry) with a good port and a dash of wood. Carbonation is noticable but not overpowering. You will notice the alcohol content at 8.5% but it's not enough to stop drinking.

M - Nothing special here, nice amount of creamy head but the dark flavours take over.

D - Not great. It's ok but I do feel like I've just drank a glass of carbonated port. Not quite a red lambrusco feel but almost a darker version of that with more port overtones.

The elements of this drink would make a fairly decent red wine or tawny port. As it happens this is a beer and as such is slightly disappointing. Can only say that Trois Monts (also from this brewer) is a much better drop and I will be running out to get that to make sure I'm not imagining things.
Is it a coincidence that the label on the bottle actually looks like a wine label?

Photo of SilentSabre
3.83/5  rDev +1.1%
look: 4 | smell: 4 | taste: 3.5 | feel: 4.5 | overall: 4

Lovely reddish bronze colour with a slightly off-white head. Decent head retention with a handful of little streams of tiny CO2 bubbles streaming upward.
Smell is sour and fruity with a little bit of barn-yard funk and wet basement nuances, as well. Somewhat Flemish Red-esque.
Taste is nothing like what the smell suggests. Almost tastes as though someone was making a sour red and hopped the hell out of it. This starts out a little sour for a split second and then the earthy hops shop up in force.
Terrific mouthfeel. Very smooth and almost creamy in the mouth. Carbonation is somewhat low and this drinks very, very nicely, especially at 8,5%. Very drinkable. One of the best French beers I have had to date.

Photo of DerBayer
2.7/5  rDev -28.8%
look: 3.5 | smell: 3 | taste: 2.5 | feel: 3 | overall: 2.5

My first biere de garde ever and so far not impressed. Looks pretty enough dark ruby to light chestnut with bits.

Smell is faint and slightly sour doesn t give away much. The taste is slightly sour with herbal medicinal notes and noticeable alc - not great...

In all not a keeper but wouldnt turn it down

Photo of oberon
3.28/5  rDev -13.5%
look: 3.5 | smell: 3 | taste: 3 | feel: 3.5 | overall: 4

I really enjoy the biere de garde style,this seemed to be out of that category in its traits.Poured a hazed lighter amber shade with a huge blooming white head that never settled.Aromas of pilsner malt with a faint leafy note,not really a whole lot going on.Flavors are dryish and lightly toasted,a bit of freshly baked bread in the finish.Does not seem that it could be 8.5%abv.,its rather light.Eh I was expecting more,there are many better of the style.

Photo of Parrotbeak
3.68/5  rDev -2.9%
look: 4 | smell: 3.5 | taste: 3.5 | feel: 4 | overall: 4

Amber with a creamy, white, half-inch head that remains. Lots of bubbles and fine sediment throughout.
Smell is rather unassertive red grapes and light malts.
Taste is acidic red grapes, slight sourness, and faint oak.
Mouthfeel is fairly crisp, with a medium body and dry finish.
Good drinkability. A bit bland overall, but easy to drink and goes down easily.

Photo of belenita
4.03/5  rDev +6.3%
look: 3.5 | smell: 3.5 | taste: 4 | feel: 4.5 | overall: 4.5

A - Off-white lacing with various sizes of bubbles, brownish amber in color.

S - No particular smell but alcohol and a bit of earthiness.

T - Bitter, dry, somewhat alcoholic; Clean and smooth aftertaste.

M - medium-high carbonation, medium-bodied.

D - Yes, would drink again. I think the combination of its taste and mouthfeel makes it a good beer for me. Fresh.

Photo of Bisho
4/5  rDev +5.5%
look: 4 | smell: 4 | taste: 4 | feel: 4 | overall: 4

Great beer this one, a nice surprise! I was curious to try it after being aquainted with its French stablemate 3 Monts.

Dark red/brown beer which produces lots of carbonation as it pours. Settles with a massive creamy eggwhite head.

Very earthy smell with a tartiness and sweet overtones of malt.

Very big maltiness taste to it which is good because it rounds out the bitter tartiness of the flavour. I can really feel the malty caramel milk overtones which make this drop rather unique!

Very bubbly and the malt lingers on nicely in the mouth well after it's gone. The high ABV is barely noticable to mine (although I know it's there because it is still rather warming) and I find myself reaching for the next one with ease!

This brew should be served at room temperature or if you must, ever so slightly chilled.

Good drop!

Photo of Hanger
3.73/5  rDev -1.6%
look: 3.5 | smell: 3.5 | taste: 4 | feel: 3.5 | overall: 3.5

330 mL bottle in an oversized wine glass

A - hazy amber colour with way too much head, 70-80 mm which dropped slowly to a thin layer.

S - yeasts and bready malts, initial smells were masked by head

T - Bready malts, yeast, some bitter hops

M - medium bodied with carbonation noticable, along with alcohol

D - nice and tasty. very good to drink although alcohol would prevent multiples in a sitting

Photo of Boto
3.85/5  rDev +1.6%
look: 4 | smell: 3.5 | taste: 4 | feel: 3.5 | overall: 4

33cl bottle: This one pours a slightly hazy, amber color. There was a fairly big ecru head that dropped away rather quickly. The aroma is nice. It is somewhat bready, with some faint caramel malts. Some faint fruits in there also, as well as a light amout of earthy hops. It is a bit "tingly" on the tongue. Some dark fruits, caramel, and a dryness in the finish. Pretty decent.

Photo of jwinship83
3.33/5  rDev -12.1%
look: 3 | smell: 3.5 | taste: 3.5 | feel: 3 | overall: 3

11.2oz bottle with no freshness information poured into my duvel tulip glass.

A- uh oh, this one was a gusher. the body is a reddish brown color with a really large foamy beige colored head. small spots of lacing left behind on the sides of my glass.

S- the nose is mostly bready malts and caramel. earthy hops as well. i think i can faintly detect the alcohol in here.

T- the taste is alot like the nose. it starts off with bready and caramel malts. there are also earthy/musty hops in here. the alcohol can be tasted, but very lightly.

M- medium bodied with a high level of carbonation. moderate warming from the alcohol.

D- this one was a bit of a chore to struggle through. doubt id get another one.

Photo of CHickman
4.35/5  rDev +14.8%
look: 3 | smell: 3 | taste: 5 | feel: 4.5 | overall: 4.5

Pours reddish amber in color with a 1 1/2 inch creamy/foamy tan head; very nice lacing that sticks to the glass and leaves markers as it goes down with each sip. Smells mostly of sweet malt, with some fruit and wine-like oak.

Tastes of sweet malt, orange peel, light hops, light spices, some roasted malt, dark fruit, cinnamon or coriander; very smooth and creamy with light to medium carbonation. Very nice complexity where the malt sweetness starts off, followed by fruit and some spices, then it has a crisp finish that's malty and tails off with some more malt that's roasted, delicious and dry. A medium bodied beer that's got excellent flavor with some alcohol kick, but in a good way.

An overall great beer that is Belgian in style and complexity, even though it's a French beer; clearly the Belgian influence has dominated the taste of this beer, which I am thankful for. It went down so nice and easy that I had a second with dinner the Gotham Bar and Grill in NYC.

Photo of Zorro
3.4/5  rDev -10.3%
look: 4 | smell: 4 | taste: 3 | feel: 3.5 | overall: 3.5

Clear reddish brown colored beer with a massive tan colored head.

Strong scent of barley and wheat bran. Scents of apple, tobacco and leather with a slight smoky scent. This beer has a distinct raisin bran scent to it.

Starts out bone dry with a herbal hop aftertaste that tastes most like tobacco. Little bit of caramel and faint smoke and apple flavors. Overall though I do have to say this is much drier and less flavorful that I expected from the scent.

Mouthfeel is medium.

Interesting beer but not one I think I will try again. For one thing it is far drier than I expected and secondly it is under-flavored to me.

Photo of PBoegel
4.28/5  rDev +12.9%
look: 4 | smell: 4 | taste: 4.5 | feel: 4.5 | overall: 4

Poured from 11.2 ounce bottle into a Corsendonk Chalice. Amber to burnt orange with a thick two inch dense rocky head. The light tan head leaves plenty of lace.

Aroma is wood upfront, oak, birch, fresh cut maple. Followed by dates, dried cranberry and burnt brown sugar, fresh toasted bread. The alcohol begins to slide underneath as the beer warms with a slight fruity malt tone. Some notes of chalkiness that can often be found in dubbels and tripels. No hop aroma.

Flavors are a blend of oak and maple with a pronounced sour cherry and fresh baked pie crust. Alcohol is warming and blends well with the dry finish and slight dried fruit sweetness, apricots and raisin like. Very reminiscent of wood aged cabernet sauvignons. No hop flavor.

The beer finishes dry but pleasant. The mouthfeel is light but not subtle. Very effervescent, combined with the alcohol makes the beer feel drier and cleanses any sweetness in the finish. There is a fair hop bitterness to the beer but it is over taken in the mouthfeel by the dryness of the finish.

A very well made beer, with vast character and a degree of freshness or house character that has in my opinion been lost in many larger Belgian style brewhouses.

Photo of Viggo
3.73/5  rDev -1.6%
look: 4 | smell: 4 | taste: 3.5 | feel: 3.5 | overall: 4

Thanks to ritzkiss for opening this one.

Pours a lightly hazed copper/orange, thick off white head forms, drops to a thin layer, some nice lacing sticks all over the glass. Smell is neat, sweet and sour, caramel, citrus and tangerine, lemons, lightly tart, honey, a bit funky, pretty interesting. Taste is similar, sweet and sour up front, toast, biscuit, very fruity, citrus, lemons, sugary and tart finish. Mouthfeel is light to medium bodied with high carbonation, pretty unique beer. Thanks Eric!

Photo of bobsy
3.7/5  rDev -2.4%
look: 4 | smell: 3 | taste: 4 | feel: 4 | overall: 3.5

This is my second biere de garde from Saint-Sylvestre, and I'm still getting to grips with the style.

Pours a radiant gold, with a large rocky head, that never really died becuase of multiple steady streams of bubbles rising from the bottom of the glass. Some sticky fingers of lace were left behind. The aroma is kinda weird. Upfront its very grassy, with lemon and floral notes, but under that is a huge toasted malt base, and the smell of a new rubber duck (work with me here).

The flavour has elements of a euro strong to it. There's a prominent sweetness, and evident alcohol. Toasty caramel malt provides the springboard for lemon and honey, and there's even a touch of metal in the finish. Certainly there's a lot of redisual sugars left over in this body. Its quite sticky and syrupy - a situation which is fortunatly alleviated by high carbonation. A warming feeling in the lower throat lets you know that this beer packs a punch.

I've rated this to style, and I think its a good example. However, I don't think its a style taht will ever really appeal to me though - all the examples I've has so far have been a bit sweet nad brutish. Hopefully my biere de mars will change that oppinion.

Thanks Eric for busting out the bottle!

Photo of ritzkiss
3.75/5  rDev -1.1%
look: 4.5 | smell: 3.5 | taste: 3.5 | feel: 4.5 | overall: 4

750ml corked and caged, pours a dark burnished orange, light caramel head with good retention, swirling bubbles feeding the foam.

Nose is toasted malts, loads of caramel, light floral hopping, maybe some Saaz in there too.

Lots of caramel malts in the taste, almost tastes vienna lager like with the caramel base, except this has a huge syrupy body, much thicker. Lots of floral notes, oranges, lemons, nice drying of the cheeks in the finish. Key part of this beer is the ample carb in my mind, without it the thick brew would sit in your mouth and overwhelm it - as it is, it floats and dances through leaving all the right notes in your mouth.

Nice brew, not something I would drink regularly but a nice surprise. Not a hint of the alcohol, easy drinking.

Photo of birchstick
4.22/5  rDev +11.3%
look: 4 | smell: 4 | taste: 4.5 | feel: 4 | overall: 4

A - brownish red with a great-looking head

S - sweet, caramel malts with dark fruits

T - This a pretty interesting ale. Starts off with some sweet malt, which fades into a number of different fruits - tart green apple and plum. There is an earthy oakiness and a touch of smoke on the finish. Definitely a distinct taste.

M - nice carbonation tickles the throat on the way down. The abv is insanely well-hidden in this.

D - I was expecting this to be a French red ale but was pleasantly surprised, being that I wasn't a huge fan of my first encounter with the style. I will definitely seek this one out again.

Photo of Evocatus
3.73/5  rDev -1.6%
look: 4.5 | smell: 2.5 | taste: 4 | feel: 4 | overall: 4

Takes multiple pours to get it all into the glass. Once finished, it has a nice deep amber color with a thick beige head that lasts for a good amount of time. Smells a little bit fruity, like apples; however, the scent isn't too strong. Taste is a mix of bitter hops and fruit. It goes down pretty smoothly with a slight tingle on the tongue when it first touches the mouth. Overall a good beer from France which is somewhat surprising for a country mostly known for wine, champagne, and cognac.

Photo of dgfair
3.43/5  rDev -9.5%
look: 4.5 | smell: 4 | taste: 3 | feel: 3.5 | overall: 3.5

11.2 oz bottle poured into my Chimay goblet.

The first pour is very foamy, and it requires a couple of pours to get it all into the goblet. Color is a beautiful reddish amber with a frothy tan that sticks for a long time and leaves lacing all over the glass when it finally dissipates. Beautiful beer.

The smell is fruity upfront with nice aromas of apple and pear backed by a wonderful sweet pastry yeast. As the beer warms, a slight peppery mustiness comes through that provides great balance to the original sweet scents.

The first taste is somewhat doughy with a slight touch of candy sugar sweetness, followed by a touch of booziness at that swallow. Aftertaste sticks around for a while with the booziness and breadiness lingering. There's a slight touch of dark fruit, maybe plum or fig that begins to come out as the beer warms, but still not enough to overpower the boozy must.

Overall, not a very drinkable brew. Definitely a slow sipper that you will want to allow to warm before drinking. An interesting mesh of a biere de garde and a flanders red, but still leaves something to be desired.

Photo of tai4ji2x
4.22/5  rDev +11.3%
look: 4 | smell: 4 | taste: 4.5 | feel: 4 | overall: 4

from bottletrek or liquidsolutions (i forget), by way of stevemcqueenjr

330ml bottle, with "order 1008" printed on the back label.

HUGE gusher! lost about 1/4 of the bottle before i could get it into my duvel tulip.

deep orangey amber, almost red tints. hazy with gushed sediment, plus particles. huge, 3-finger, gush-induced foamy head, eventually fades to thin layer. good lacing.

aroma: malty and bready, with apple/pear esters and lots of caramel. grassy and herbal, w trace of cinnamon, faint farmhouse character and gentle phenols in back.

taste: hops are surprisingly assertive but still only mildly to moderately bitter. they are grassy, hay-like and herbal. matches well with the bready, mildly sweet, caramelized malts and mildly fruity apple esters. slight nutty note as well, almost biscuity. faint spice and phenols in back.

light to medium body, smooth, with just a touch of astringency, perhaps some from the phenols which peek in just towards the finish. carbonation is a bit fizzy (probably due to the gushing), but can give fluffiness.

a shame about the gusher. knocked off on the [appearance] score just a little.

Photo of eat
4.2/5  rDev +10.8%
look: 5 | smell: 4.5 | taste: 4 | feel: 4.5 | overall: 4

This is the first French beer I've ever tried. I'm actually not sure if I've even seen another French beer before...I would have thought it to be a risky pick but I checked the grade here before I went to buy it. Perfect beer to be drinking here in Quebec for la Fete National du Quebec. That's right...the francophone Quebecois here celebrate today as their "national" holiday. National as in Quebec the nation.

This poured a massive head that isn't going anywhere. I poured it into an over-sized wine glass and I'm not even sure how I'm supposed to drink the little beer there is at the bottom; the head is so big and isn't moving. Finally it starts to recede and leaves some pretty crazy lacing. The beer itself is absolutely beautiful, one of the nicest colours I've ever seen in beer form. Dark, golden honey colour with some red in it. I don't throw around 5s; this beer couldn't really look any better.

Strong yeasty, astringent smell. Floral strawberries, yogurt, candy, some background hops and lots of sweet, caramel malt. Delicious.

Not quite as nice as I was expecting it to taste but not bad at all. Pretty sweet but in a nice way; it tastes something like the beer version of a strawberry sundae or something. Creamy, fruity; nice dry, bitter aftertaste to balance it out. The ABV is perceivable but is blended very well into the mix.

I really love its thick, creamy feel. Medium bodied but very creamy with a low carbonation. Fits the taste perfectly.

This is a bit too sweet to drink a lot of or to drink it often but I'm definitely enjoying this. I'm going to have to check out some other French beers, I'm impressed.

Photo of SFLpunk
4.2/5  rDev +10.8%
look: 4.5 | smell: 3.5 | taste: 4.5 | feel: 4.5 | overall: 4

330mL brown glass pry-top. Back label dated BB 07.03.10. Bought at Super Marché Rahman in Montreal.

Appearance: Poured into a tulip glass leading to 2 fingers or off-white creamy head atop a cloudy brown brew.

Nose: Rather muted with some slightly sour stone fruit notes, some light caramel and milk chocolate notes. Almost like chocolate covered cherries.

Palate: Medium bodied and with crisp/sharp carbonation. Lots going on here. The chocolate covered cherry thing continues and is met with strawberry and light toffee/butteriness. The palate is really sharp at first, but as the carbonation releases the taste buds, they are overwhelmed with fruit and dark candies.

Notes: Had no earthly idea what to expect from this beer. I bought it simply because it was from French Flanders. Stunning beer. Wish we could get it here.

Photo of ZorPrime
3.25/5  rDev -14.2%
look: 4 | smell: 3.5 | taste: 3 | feel: 4 | overall: 3

Tasted on January 31st, 2009. From a 750 ml bottle.

Pours a red color ?!? wow strange would have thought yellow or amber...

The head is so big with huge bubbles. The head is very cloudlike.

Aroma: Some fruit with spices.

Taste: Similar as aroma however, I distinguish malts too.

Drinkability: This is a beer to have while eating in my opinion. Not something to drink alone.

Not a bad beer but not a session beer too.

Photo of jasonjlewis
4.3/5  rDev +13.5%
look: 4 | smell: 5 | taste: 4 | feel: 4 | overall: 4.5

Pours a huge initial head that disappates towards the end of the lass. Retention is decent. Color is moderately clear amber.

Smell is wonderful. Phenols of apricots and plum come out intensely with a touch of clove. As the beer warms up a nice hint of black current pulls through.

Taste has a good amount of residual sweetness. Raisin, toffee and a touch of fruity esters namely apricot and plum provide an underlying complexity that makes each sip more and more though provoking.

Residual sweetness on the palate with a touch of creaminess.

This is a damn good beer. I don't notice the 8.5% abv, I drank this beer as fast as I would a 4% abv kolsch or hefeweizen.

Photo of swizzlenuts
3.75/5  rDev -1.1%
look: 4 | smell: 4 | taste: 4 | feel: 3.5 | overall: 3

S: Smells like apple sauce and a mild fruitiness.
A: A muddy brown with an orange tint. Good one inch head, but ends quickly.
T: There is apples and a berry flavour. Very reminiscent to wine. Slight sour/tart finish. Just not as balanced as I'd hoped.
M: Medium bodied with a fair amount of carbonation.
D: Not really. The wine flavour is just too over powering... maybe it needs a bit of age.

Gavroche from Brasserie De Saint-Sylvestre
86 out of 100 based on 385 ratings.