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The Beast Grand Cru - Avery Brewing Company

Not Rated.
The Beast Grand CruThe Beast Grand Cru

Displayed for educational use only; do not reuse.
BA SCORE
87
very good

1,110 Ratings
THE BROS
-
no score

(send 'em beer!)
Ratings: 1,110
Reviews: 548
rAvg: 3.85
pDev: 16.36%
Wants: 64
Gots: 260 | FT: 13
Brewed by:
Avery Brewing Company visit their website
Colorado, United States

Style | ABV
Belgian Strong Dark Ale |  16.83% ABV

Availability: Summer

Notes/Commercial Description:
Batch 1 (2004): 15.7% ABV
Batch 2 (2004): 18.1% ABV
Batch 3 (2005): 14.9% ABV
Batch 4 (2006): 14.6% ABV
Batch 5 (2007): 16.42% ABV
Batch 6 (2008): 16.31% ABV
Batch 7 (2009): 15.07% ABV
Batch 8 (2010): 16.21% ABV
Batch 9 (2011): 16.83% ABV
Batch 10 (2012): 16.00% ABV
Batch 11 (2013): 18:00% ABV
Batch 12 (2014): 16.1% ABV

(Beer added by: Crosling on 01-29-2004)
Beer: Ratings & Reviews
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Ratings: 1,110 | Reviews: 548 | Display Reviews Only:
Reviews by oldcrustacean:
Photo of oldcrustacean
3.58/5  rDev -7%
look: 4.5 | smell: 4 | taste: 4 | feel: 3.5 | overall: 2

2004 The Beast bomber, 18.1%

I like to seek out new beers at my local store two or three times a week, but almost missed this one. The Beast's red eyes lured me in ... I just couldn't resist the temptation to try something new. Avery's 10 and 11 were some of the best brews I've ever had, but I had a feeling that The Beast was something all together different.

The Beast, to say the least, was intimidating. I just didn't have it in me to drink it that first night. Now, after a long day of work, I poured her into my chalice and just gazed into its firey glow. Something about this beer made me hesitate; took me nearly 15 minutes to take a sip.

Above a thin lacey head this beer smells of trouble... a strong scent of fruit (specifically fig and grape) and fusel alcohol. As I pull the glass to my mouth, its as if I'm staring into the crimson eyes of the beast. I take my first sip. The taste: thick and fruity, strong...alcohol dominating... I'm scared.

I'm only half way through this beer and it's got me -- The Beast has dragged me into its lair and it's only time before I'm done. Surprisingly, this brew is very drinkable if you ignore the smell... which, while not awful, just lets you know that you're in for something.

Drinkability? Well, if you're smart, you'll stop at one.

oldcrustacean, Oct 14, 2004
More User Reviews:
Photo of oberon
3.88/5  rDev +0.8%
look: 4.5 | smell: 4 | taste: 4 | feel: 4.5 | overall: 3

My first encounter with the beast its been a long time comin,poured a very nice deep ruby red with a fluffy 2 finger pinkish colored head that leaves nice sheets of lace behind as it settles.Alcohol dipped cherries really jump out at me in the aroma along with some raisin and maybe a touch of spice perhaps cinnamon,thick mouthfeel that coates the mouth but is very smooth on the way down,whoo this baby packs a wallop like the aroma the alcohol infused cherry is predomenant in the flavors as well with more alcohol and candied figs.One thing I did notice is a light herbal hop underneath all that massive malt and alcohol wich was nice.The Beast left its mark on me no doubt whoo it was damn good but definent one and done for me.

oberon, Dec 03, 2005
Photo of RoyalT
4.83/5  rDev +25.5%
look: 4.5 | smell: 5 | taste: 5 | feel: 4.5 | overall: 4.5

Appearance – The color is a deep, rich, brownish-orange that screams “Grand Cru.” The head was almost non-existent, probably due to the astronomical ABV, but it pitted beautifully and left a foamy ring around the glass.

I know that “appearance” doesn’t include the label, but next to The Ruination this is one of the coolest bottles that I’ve ever seen. There’s like a hologram of a beast (that won’t come out in a BA pic) with giant teeth that just seems to jump out at you.

Smell – This is an alcohol-soaked fruit-ridden darkish-ale paradise. As it is with many a Grand Cru, the fruits just jump out of the goblet.

Cherries, peaches, apricots, all overly ripe and squishy, falling off the trees. Browned bananas, with their sugary profile, and juicy melons ground together and plopped in a vodka martini. Royal grapes and dates, mixed with smashed raisins, covered in gin and flavored with tobacco leaves. All of this just begins the show.

Taste – Here come the fruits, as pleasing to the palate as The Ring of Mordor is to Golum. “They are juicy – must eats them raw,” or should I say, “The forbidden Cru, is nice and cool . . . AND JUICY SWEET!” Alcohol has never tasted so good as it baths the luscious flavors described in the aroma notes.

But, this is not an overly-aged broken down BSDA limping to Grand Crudome dilapidated and disturbed. No, this is the final iteration of an ale-child found in adulthood, fully developed and arriving at its course.

Some Grand Crus taste spent to me, but this one is just getting started. The malt base is still strong, and there’s even a hop balance to give this one complexity. The extra strong tobacco notes provide the finish here. This is no bullshit. The tobacco is strong at the end and makes a powerful statement – this one is serious.

Mouthfeel – Full-bodied and so filled with flavors that your cheeks and salivary glands will be going bonkers. Your mouth won’t know what to do with this Grand Cru, but the heart will swallow and thank later.

Drinkability – You’ve got to be kidding me. Liver concern is the only thing keeping me from drinking a bottle of this nightly.

Comments – I initially tasted this cold then let it set for an hour. The change in flavor is amazing. You have to drink this warm, warm, warm – literally at room temperature – to get the full effect of this ale.

PS: I think TheLongBeachBum is following my review with one of his own, and he is an excellent descriptor of Belgian Ales.

RoyalT, Feb 19, 2004
Photo of DaPeculierDane
1.95/5  rDev -49.4%
look: 2 | smell: 2.5 | taste: 2 | feel: 1.5 | overall: 1.5

Urine and syrup. Not good at all. This beer does not seem to be fully fermented. The aroma is dominated by a sickeningly sweet rotten corn husk, urine like odor. Flavors of candied fruits and snow cone syrups overpower anything interesting going on here. The alcohol burns the mouth, nose, and throat. It’s overwhelming. Finishes sticky like maple syrup left spilled on a counter on a hot July day. Rubbing alcohol flavors linger. Ick! This is one case where bigger is not better. I’d take Milwaukee’s Beast over this one any day. I suppose that in about a dozen years, this one might be drinkable. I’ll consider revisiting then.

DaPeculierDane, Feb 26, 2006
Photo of t2grogan
4/5  rDev +3.9%

t2grogan, Oct 09, 2014
Photo of MadScientist
3.34/5  rDev -13.2%
look: 3.5 | smell: 3.25 | taste: 3.25 | feel: 3.5 | overall: 3.5

Batch 6
Bottled in 2008

A: A deep copper good clarity. There is little carbonation producing very little head even with an agressive pour. What little of the light brown head is there is quick to fade to a thin film and slim ring around the glass.

S: A strong alcohol aroma with a bit of heat. Lots of caramel and rich malt complexity like an Barley Wine. There is no noticeable hops aroma. A light cocoa and slight spice notes with a little chewable vitamin.

T: Lots of alcohol and malt sweetness with a rich malt complexity having strong treacle and toffee like flavors. There is a moderate hop bitterness and pretty much no hops flavor. The balance to the malt done as much by the hops as the alcohol but even together the avalanche of malt sweetness just can't be stopped giving a balance that is fairly sweet. There is a medium amount of orange flavor and a light raisin and mollasses thing going on. A medium-low spiciness. The finish is medium sweet with a linger alcohol sweetness and a touch of spicy fruit flavors.

M. Heat and then a medium bodied beer that feels heavier and viscous from the low level of carbonation.

O: A boozy beer with some fruit and spice that has a high enough alcohol content that you'll want to share. It shows little signs of mellowing in the past few years. The flavors make more sense after reading the bottle that it was brewed with honey malt and actual honey.

MadScientist, Jun 27, 2013
Photo of kaimcm
3.95/5  rDev +2.6%
look: 4 | smell: 4 | taste: 4 | feel: 4.5 | overall: 3.5

12 oz.- bottled in 2005 - 14.9 ABV - reviewed 9/06

bottle poured into a huge dogfish snifter.

A: deep deep body with a beautiful off white head. foamy goodness doesnt last long, lite splotches left. body color looks like blood and earth mixed up, fitting for the beast.

S: hits the nose syrupy sweet, malty, and hot. booze abounds, warming, but not harshly burning. loaded with fruit, which battles with the fusels for attention. apples, peaches, cream, molasses, honey, and raisons everywhere. even a light nut quality under the booze. nose is reminiscent of a meaty scotch, like lowlands or some of the isles. extremely busy but sometimes not that focused and a little tough to deal with under the alcohol.

M/T: Mouthfeel is damn near exceptional. so rich, so creamy, so chewy, so awesome. first waves are molasses, honey, and more sugary goodness. mid palate a more distinct malt character comes through followed by many of the fruits in the nose. apples, some orange and peach, very juicy, and more cream. raisons everywhere making this extremely port like. full bodied to say the least and decadent as all hell. finally some grainy nutty qualities arise which are quickly chased away by lingering sugaring and warming alcohol. teeth are coated with sugar, throat is tingling with vapor, head is struggling with booze, and belly is warm and impatient for more.

D: um...come on. this is the definition of an every once in a while sipper. i dont like the idea of reserving beers for "special occasions" so I wont say that. but not one most any one is likely to crack more than seldomly.

overall an incredible accomplishment considering the ingredients and strength of this beer. that being said, I think Avery should do us all a favor and put a few years of age on this beast before release. so complex it seems the beer is fighting itself to come together. not sure when in 2005 this was bottled but considering we are already into mid september of 2006 and its still a little chaotic, I would prefer another year or so on this. wish I had several of these to lay down myself. cheers to avery!

kaimcm, Sep 19, 2006
Photo of wesbrownyeah
4.33/5  rDev +12.5%
look: 4 | smell: 4.5 | taste: 4.5 | feel: 4 | overall: 4

P- Avery "The Beast" Grand Cru. Alcohol content stated 14.9%. I'm sure its a tad more with a bottle date of 2005. Panther-like face on front of bottle w/ red foil capper.

A- Has a "dark as night" color pour that doesn't even let one ray of light penetrate its heavily brown hued liquid. "Little to none" head that leaves behind a tight barely there ring around the glass.

S- Agh... Heavy amounts of alcohol esters, burnt caramel malt, and stale scents hops that are so "out of bloom" that it burns the nose. Hard-ass smell for a bold beer.

T- Damn... Starts off sweeter than a ripe red apple that turns to a brown sugar-alcohol estery of mean burnt malt mass that overwelms the strongest taste bud avalible. S***! Too much to list at once! Raisins, figs, dates, brown sugar, rotton citrus, fired oak, and alcohol... NICE! Barleywine like taste.

M- Flow of beer ruins my mouth with thick fruit like tang that only lingers on to make me pucker in fear of whats next. Flavor sits on the buds only asking you try again to test its wrath of feel.

D- Well... Dont drink alot. Great "Strange beer" But not one you have a drinkfest with. Dangerous and Over-bodied but a sipper with friends (12oz.) beer.

Notes: Almost has 120 essense but don't mistake very STRONG ALE!!

wesbrownyeah, Sep 05, 2009
Photo of tbryan5
4.31/5  rDev +11.9%

tbryan5, Thursday at 04:40 AM
Photo of joemetric
3.5/5  rDev -9.1%

joemetric, Jul 13, 2014
Photo of Dmann
4.7/5  rDev +22.1%
look: 4 | smell: 5 | taste: 5 | feel: 4.5 | overall: 4

This is a beer that truly knocked me on my ass! After a night out with xlperro and the gang, this was the final nail in the coffin. But what a good nail it was. This beer poured a dark amber color with a minimal head that did not last long at all. This is a beer that you could smell forever with it's great raison, plum and heavily sweet notes. The taste was so very complex, i'd have to really drink this one before drinking anything else next time to decipher all of the nuances in this brew. The abv is not even detectable due to the fact that the great fruit and hop taste along with the great dark sweetness of the malts cover it up so well. I will be on the lookout for this one again!

Dmann, Jun 04, 2004
Photo of bulldogg915
3/5  rDev -22.1%

bulldogg915, Apr 03, 2013
Photo of danthehopslamman
3.75/5  rDev -2.6%

danthehopslamman, Oct 01, 2013
Photo of DaftPatrick
4/5  rDev +3.9%

DaftPatrick, Oct 03, 2014
Photo of WuAnquo1
2.5/5  rDev -35.1%

WuAnquo1, Jan 07, 2012
Photo of Beaver13
3.63/5  rDev -5.7%
look: 3.5 | smell: 3.5 | taste: 4 | feel: 3.5 | overall: 3

The Beast poured copper with deep red highlights. It had a creamy, light brown head that quickly went to a thin layer and later disappeared completely.

The aroma was rather subdued. It smelled of figgy malt and molasses along with some sherry-like alcohol.

The taste was very complex. Initially it was malty with fig/raisin, bananas and cloves. Then came grassy hops with some acidic alcohol that warmed quite a bit as it went down. The alcohol became more pronounced as the beer warmed. It was a bit too treacly for me and had a somewhat unpleasant charcoal finish.

The mouthfeel was thick, creamy and sticky.

Overall, I can appreciate the Beast as quite the complex brew. It's just not my bag...too sweet, too much alcohol and I didn't personally care for some of the flavors. It kind of reminded me of a too far over the top version of New Belgium's Abbey. It would be interesting to see what aging does for this beer...I think it could mellow out nicely.

Beaver13, Mar 13, 2004
Photo of iemailjack
3.5/5  rDev -9.1%

iemailjack, Dec 04, 2011
Photo of merlin48
4.25/5  rDev +10.4%
look: 4.5 | smell: 4.5 | taste: 4.5 | feel: 4 | overall: 3.5

22 oz bomber, foiled and capped, bottled in 2004. Served slightly chilled, in a St Bernardus goblet. Another very striking label from Avery, warns that this is, indeed, a Beast.

Appearance: Pours a strikingly clear, ruby mahogany body that is a sight to behold. Short, beige head is shortlived, but leaves massive Belgian sheet lacing all over the goblet.

Aroma: Powerful vinous alcohol presence introduces a cartload of fruit. Bananas, green apples, and oranges are up front. Rum soaked darker fruits, of raisin, prunes, dates, and figs, quickly follow. Candycane and rock candy sugar aromas chime in, soon after.

Mouthfeel features an explosion of sweet carbonation, reminiscent of a fine, Belgian strong pale ale. Moderate alcohol burn is impssible to ignore.

Taste: Wow! This is a big beer. Obvious high alcohol presence is a given. So many malts, hops, yeasts, and sugars, are present here as to give this an extreme complexity that makes the high abv an afterthought. Taste is mostly dark fruity and malty sweet. Plenty of dark fruit tastes going on here, as well as fresh apple, pear, and orange notes. Delicate hopping of several hops varieties, make this even more complex. Geeez! This one is a monster, not just a beast. Label says this is made with honey malt. Never heard of honey malt, but I'll take their word for it. Finish is slightly sweet, but never cloying. Clean aftertaste.

BEWARE THE BEAST! It's easy to ignore the high abv in this, due to all the malts, yeasts, hops, and Belgian sugars used in its construction. This is one helluva Belgian style strong dark ale, or whatever you choose to call it. Another excellent brew from Avery. I must admit, that having just one of these will render you useless for doing anything constructive for the rest of the evening.

merlin48, Apr 29, 2004
Photo of Billolick
4.13/5  rDev +7.3%
look: 4 | smell: 4 | taste: 4.5 | feel: 4 | overall: 3.5

Sampled at the Blind Tiger NYC, Bomber bottle. Pours dark amber, tiny bubble head, leaving nice lace. Obviously strong stuff. Bold, complex and nicely spiced. On the sweet side. Alcohol present. Yeasty, malty, nice crunch of drying hops. Not a beeer for a newbie. Belgian lovers and big beer lovers rejoice. This beer has alot going on, wish it was more available in the east

Billolick, Apr 23, 2004
Photo of Mora2000
4/5  rDev +3.9%
look: 4 | smell: 4 | taste: 4 | feel: 4 | overall: 4

Bottled in 2009.

The beer pours a hazy red-amber color with a white head. The aroma is molasses, alcohol, dark fruit, caramel, toffee and some rum. Not sure where the rum notes come from, but they add a lot to the aroma.

The flavor is very heavy on the molasses and brown sugar. I also get some toffee and caramel notes as well as some alcohol.

Medium mouthfeel and medium carbonation.

Mora2000, May 08, 2011
Photo of mattster
4.15/5  rDev +7.8%
look: 3.5 | smell: 3.5 | taste: 4.5 | feel: 4.5 | overall: 4

Opened bottle labeled "bottled in 2005", poured into Snifter. 14.9 ABV.

Poured a nice head of 1" - very foamy and bubbly. Good dark mahogany brown color.

Smell is of malts. Very strong smell - almost a slight alcohol tinge to it, otherwise very nice.

Taste is sweet with hints of dark fruits. Is a tad bitter, but pleasant. Definitely a sipper to be enjoyed with a meal. Mouth feel is very filling with nice hints of sweetness on the finish. Bubbles do not attack the tongue - that is left to the full body of this brew. All in all, a nice one.

mattster, Jan 28, 2008
Photo of magictrokini
4/5  rDev +3.9%
look: 4 | smell: 3.5 | taste: 4 | feel: 4 | overall: 4.5

Dark amber pour with a minimal tan head. Port, malt, spun sugar, and dark fruits make up the aroma. Heavy taste. Thick with sugar, yeast, and malts up front that glides into a sherry and finally ends with a hop bitterness. Sticky, lingering mouthfeel and aftertaste. Gets better as it warms. Very good, just wish it was not $8 for a 12 oz bottle.

magictrokini, Dec 04, 2008
Photo of jaminjohnson
4.5/5  rDev +16.9%

jaminjohnson, Jul 04, 2012
Photo of jcdiflorio
1.83/5  rDev -52.5%
look: 4 | smell: 3 | taste: 1.5 | feel: 1.5 | overall: 1

12oz brown bottle with a red golden foil over the cap,served into a tulip glass. Bottled in 06 stated 14.6 by volume . Scanned through a few reviews this stuff sounds a bit scary. Really got my interest up for it,now back to my anticipated review.

Poured a very mirky reddish brown,remisent of cider,a generous light tan head about as tall as you can make it. Thick and creamy good retention leaving thick clinging webs of lace down the glass.

A strong blast of sweet booziness first off,with molasses and a honeyied sugaryness,some dark fruit like dates and figs,the nats are moving in quickly,better rinse this glass good when finished. There is also some nuttyness with heavly burnt carmell and some sight butter notes.

Now for the scary part the taste. Very,very sweet taste right from the start,too sweet for my taste. Very syrupy,not a boozy as expected,but it's definatly there.Dark fruitness throughout dates,figs,prunes.Has a lighter bodied feel then you would expect,yet it has lots of syrupiness. Already 2 years old don't know if aging more would help out or not. Not my kind of beer,very hard to finish. Not a beer i would want to try again.

jcdiflorio, Sep 29, 2008
Photo of kingcrowing
3.68/5  rDev -4.4%
look: 4.5 | smell: 3.5 | taste: 4 | feel: 3.5 | overall: 3

12oz bottle from 2008 poured Ito a Duvel tulip.

Pours a a clear reddish color with a decent light brown to almost red head. Nose is a bit like grease, and sweet booze.

Alcohol comes first, it's there and it's strong. Taste is quite sweet and malty, lots of raisons and sweet fruit. Mouthfeel is pretty light but sweet without being sticky. Fairly drinkable given the abv.

kingcrowing, Nov 21, 2010
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The Beast Grand Cru from Avery Brewing Company
87 out of 100 based on 1,110 ratings.