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The Beast Grand Cru - Avery Brewing Company

The Beast Grand CruThe Beast Grand Cru

Displayed for educational use only; do not reuse.
BA SCORE
86
very good

981 Ratings
THE BROS
-
no score

(send 'em beer!)
Ratings: 981
Reviews: 535
rAvg: 3.84
pDev: 16.41%


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 11 (2013): 18:00% ABV

(Beer added by: Crosling on 01-29-2004)
Beer: Ratings & Reviews
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Ratings: 981 | Reviews: 535 | Show All Ratings:
Photo of SeanChouffe
SeanChouffe

New Mexico

2.88/5  rDev -25%
look: 4 | smell: 4 | taste: 2.5 | feel: 2.5 | overall: 2.5

Bottled 2004
The color is a maraschino/amber, a small tawny head with very low retention. Carbonation is plentiful, rising evenly throughout the beer, and the lacing is clear and wine like. Aroma is malty with rich fruity esters and dark fruits – rich and sweet with some light hop notes. Alcohol is noticeable, however it is relatively low considering the overall ABV. Flavor is intensely sweet and syrupy with a full, numbing, hop finish. There are many distinguishable tastes other than possibly cherries and some dark fruits. Palate is full bodied and syrupy/creamy with that full hop bite. Effervescence is overpowered by the intensity of flavors.
What can one say. This is an intense experience. However, it is far from well balanced. I found it to be crude in its presentation and the alcohol burn was like that of cheap vodka. Quite Beast like. Sampled too early?

Serving type: bottle

12-11-2004 00:05:37 | More by SeanChouffe
Photo of kmcnair
kmcnair

California

4.4/5  rDev +14.6%
look: 4.5 | smell: 4.5 | taste: 4.5 | feel: 4.5 | overall: 4

2003 vintage sampled at O’Briens from a 1.5L Chimay challace. A year of aging does wonders for this beer. Dark mahogany in color, creates a HUGE offwhite head. Aromatics are rich and sweet of carmelized bananas, cherries and yeast. Flavor is loaded with dark dried fruits... figs, raisins, dates, prunes and lots of caramel and a tinge of alcohol. Very full bodied on the palate, with a thick syrupy quality. Excellent dry finish with a very minor alcoholic burn. Top notch.

Serving type: bottle

12-03-2004 20:01:55 | More by kmcnair
Photo of Skidz
Skidz

Wisconsin

3.95/5  rDev +2.9%
look: 4 | smell: 3.5 | taste: 4 | feel: 4.5 | overall: 4

2003 edition. Was my July 4th celebration beer, and pretty much took care of me for most of the night.

Pours out brown and sits mahogony in the glass with a small off-white head, almost tan, and fades quickly to the sides.

Smells highly malty with good spicy character. Loaded with alcohol and burns the hairs on the inside of your nose.

Tastes sweet and malty with nice hop bitterness appearing up front. Warms the mouth quickly and stomach soon after. Caramel base, and blended with alcohol all the way through.

Smooth and creamy with a light tingling carbonation. The alcohol really brings it all together.

Easy to sip, this bottle was gone much sooner than expected, though peer-pressure might have had something to do with it. It proved to be both a good way to start and end the evening. Don't ever think you won't take a shot of tobasco sauce until you have the Beast egging you on.

Serving type: bottle

10-22-2004 00:58:07 | More by Skidz
Photo of Mitchster
Mitchster

Michigan

4.8/5  rDev +25%
look: 4 | smell: 4.5 | taste: 5 | feel: 4.5 | overall: 5

Brewed with 2-row malted barley, honey malt, imported Belgian specialty grains (aromatic, pale wheat, roasted wheat, and Special B), raisins, dates, blackstrap molasses, alfafa honey, turbinado sugar, and dark Belgian candy sugar, and two different yeast strains. Hopped with Magnum, Galena, Saaz, Hallertau, Tettnang, and Hersbrucker. 15.7% ABV on the bottle (18% on the website). Bottled in 2004.

Dubbed a Belgian Grand Cru, bottled with an attractive label of some snarling animal with red eyes. Red foil neck. 22oz, paid $10.59. Pours out to a brilliantly clear ruby, forming a sticky cinnamon-tinged yellow head. Excellent retention and clouds of lacing. Carbonation is moderate, barely able to escape the dense body. Aroma of fairly typical barley-wine with tons of piney, oily and resinous hops, lots of sticky malts with dark fruit sugar, clearly evident sugars including detectable molasses. Honestly, at 15.7% ABV, I'm not picking up on much alcohol. Reminds me in aroma of a Double Bastard. Mouthfeel is thick and syrupy, coating the mouth with a very dense body. Taste is top-notch...starts with stinging pine resin and crushed pine needles, quickly offset by a rich syrupy amber malt sweetness...tons of raisins, figs, dates, prunes. A creeping warming sensation fills the gullet and alcohol is evident as a sensation, but it doesn't go beyond adding a very peppery spritz towards the finish. No fusels or isopropyl, which is to be applauded. The pine bitterness is rather mild, offset by the absurd amount of malt. Halfway through my New Belgium "Worthy" glass and I'm feeling it. Aftertaste of raisins, molasses, hot sawdust, freshly caramalized turbinado sugar, and Tipsy Cake. As it warms, the molasses becomes strongly evident and the alcohol opens up, but never becoming obtrusive, contrary to popular opinion (and this is coming from a guy who absolutely abhores spirits). 3/4 through my first glass and I'm sweating. Where am I, and how did I get in front of the computer? Now I finally understand the wisdom of Trek Haiku...(http://www.weaselbreweries.com/trek.html)

(The Corbomite Manuever)
After the midget bluff,
Chromatic trademark monster
Revealed in the end.

Definitely a love-it or hate-it brew, as any intense beer will do. I found this very enjoyable, and I would gladly purchase it again, if it wasn't so dang expensive in Michigan. Fortunately, I am leaving for a month of Estes Park in a week. Needless to say, my trunk will be jam-packed with cases upon cases of Avery and New Belgium's wares.

Throw a Stone silk-screen on this bad boy and all the BA's here would be eating it up, giving it 5's, and hording it in droves. Seriously.
/end rant

In my opinion, this sucker is an absolute treat, worthy of continuous sipping throughout the night. Absolutely yummy.

The beast numbs the vault
Locking this worm in solace,
Disciples beckon.

Serving type: bottle

10-17-2004 22:50:46 | More by Mitchster
Photo of oldcrustacean
oldcrustacean

Connecticut

3.58/5  rDev -6.8%
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.

Serving type: bottle

10-14-2004 01:29:00 | More by oldcrustacean
Photo of texashammer
texashammer

Texas

3.83/5  rDev -0.3%
look: 3.5 | smell: 4.5 | taste: 4 | feel: 3.5 | overall: 3

Deep amber red color, very clear. Very little head, but an attractive color. Smells incredible- I can't wait to get it in my mouth. I smell pineapple and honey. Smell is very sweet. Upon my first sip, the sweet smell disappears into pretty impressive bitter hops and assertive alcohol. Finishes bitter for a split second and then goes sweet again. Very interesting. Mouthfeel is interesting; the hops and alcohol together kind of burn my mouth. I would put drinkability not so high at all, even though I like it. A little has been enough for me.

Serving type: bottle

10-13-2004 20:23:28 | More by texashammer
Photo of TexIndy
TexIndy

Texas

2.53/5  rDev -34.1%
look: 4 | smell: 3 | taste: 2.5 | feel: 3 | overall: 1.5

Re-review on 9/14/09. Original review on 10/12/04 (4.5,1.5,1.0,2.0,1.0)

Poured from a 12oz bottle into a snifter. Bottled in 2009 on front label. Was a rich ruby color. Some carb streams but no lacing. It had an average sized beige head that settled into a collar and some center wisps.

Aroma was dark fruits, candi sugar and tons of alcohol. Not a big fan of BSDA aromas in general but this one had enough candi sugar to somewhat counter the dark fruits but not the alcohol. The alcohol dominated the taste with a sickly sweet kicking in after that and finishing with a way too sweet end. For me, the taste would be a 1.0 or 1.5 but giving a little higher to account for the style where some alcohol is expected in the taste. Even so, this one has much more alcohol taste than others and seems to be lacking a balance.

Overall, the alcohol is too dominant in aroma and taste for me. A miss from one of my favorite breweries. Rotation: one was enough originally and the re-sample didn't change that. [1x]

Serving type: bottle

10-12-2004 21:03:16 | More by TexIndy
Photo of icetrauma
icetrauma

Texas

1.4/5  rDev -63.5%
look: 4 | smell: 2 | taste: 1 | feel: 1.5 | overall: 1

This beer poured a nice deep mahogney with a 1/2 finger off white head which quickly dissipated into fine lace on top of the beer and around the glass. Was pretty excited at first site. Had a really sweet nuance of molasses and suger. Mind started to wonder at this point. Took my first drink. I was expecting a whole lot more. Flavors of molasses, figs, and dark sweet fruit met my palate. The taste finished with extreme suger after taste. Mouth puckered and decided to wait another couple of minutes to let the beer warm up. Second taste was just like the first. Way to sweet and syrupy feeling in my mouth. Will never buy another Beast. Sticking with The Reverend and The IPA. IMO, Avery's top brews.

Serving type: bottle

10-12-2004 02:30:00 | More by icetrauma
Photo of bditty187
bditty187

Nebraska

2.68/5  rDev -30.2%
look: 4 | smell: 3 | taste: 2.5 | feel: 3.5 | overall: 2

Clear, coppery-ruby in hue with a bit of a golden-brown influence, I did not notice any bubbles replenishing the head, which was beige in color. The foamy mass reached a pinnacle of one finger in height before fading rapidly to a soapy collar with only pockets of froth in the middle. The beer looks appealing in my glass, the color is lovely and just dark enough to be mysterious. There was no subsequent lacing, which can be expected in a big-ass beer like this. The nose blasts off with a combination of medical fruit. This combination of smells is long; I’d say they are found from start to finish. In the middle, however, I noticed a trace of clove that disappeared quickly. Then came a whiff of chocolate, this was short-lived as a dash of brandy fines a home. The once nondescript fruitiness of the beginning starts to “name names” and I could detect raisins, plums, oranges, and green grapes. These aromas were faint; the strongest of the fruit aromas was banana. By the finish the nose becomes boozy. Warm. It is unsophisticated in one sense but intriguing yet I’m not sold on the nose. Yes, it has a good amount of aroma but it still smells, oddly, empty. I guess I’d still call it inviting. The first sip was EKU 28 laced with napalm. It burned my mouth and my throat and lit my belly on fire like no beer I’ve ever had. Yes there was flavor but why dwell on the details? Who would have ever thought rubbing alcohol mixed with children’s cough drops would be made into a beer? There is a good deal of sweetness here; I swear I’m drinking burn brown sugar mixed with some crazy rum cake soaked in molasses. Brandy. Candied sugar, indicative of a Belgian Ale. Figs, loads of plums and more alcohol, by the finish it is not “hidden” anymore nor does the alcohol take the form of Brandy or even Vodka (which I tasted moments of), no, the finish is hot and raw and completely unrefined. This beer lacks sophistication. It is insulting to every great Belgian brewery, “Grand Cru” my ass. This beer is uniquely American, it is hugely flavorful and, yes, there are moments of great taste. And, yes, part of me loves the pain and the massive flavors beating the shit out of my palate. And, yes, part of me loves the 15.7% abv smacking my brain around. But I don’t love this beer as a whole. IMVHO, it doesn’t take much talent to brew a beer like this. The alcohol kills the taste. This is a sipper, obviously, but after about half a glass I started not to like the heat. Why a beer like this is found in a bomber is beyond me. I am so conflicted with the beer. I will sum up the palate like this, “wow… no I mean whoa… no I mean wow… no I mean…” you get the point. I’m torn. Full bodied, I think. By the time I started to write about the moutfheel my brain was lubed and my tongue was fried. The carbonation was low but appropriate. Drinkable? No. Likeable? The jury is still out. Will I try this again? No… it is over the top for me, I couldn’t even finish 70% of the bomber. I got so bored with it; once my tongue was scalded I found it pointless to drink. I purchased a bomber in Loveland, CO. I’ve waited many months to try this; maybe I should have waited many years.


The next morning when I woke up I could still *feel* the beer inside me. It haunted my soul. I felt off, like I had internally soiled myself. Buyer beware.

Serving type: bottle

09-30-2004 13:00:22 | More by bditty187
Photo of sideshowrob
sideshowrob

Maryland

4.72/5  rDev +22.9%
look: 4.5 | smell: 5 | taste: 5 | feel: 4.5 | overall: 4

2003/4 release Poured into a Stone AB 22 Oz glass. Beautiful orange-hazy color with good carbonation. Appeared to be a beer you could eat with a spoon.

Smell was nearly overpowering - so many sents shooting up at once - sweet molasas, hoppy aromas, candy sugars. Very harmonious and inviting.

Taste was out-of-this-world. A truly unique style. For me, the malts and candy sugars domminated the brew, but there was some balance from the hops. This is not a session beer, but one meant to be enjoyed slowly. The ABV was very well concealed within the taste, but still, this is a brew that punches you in the mouth and then kisses you on the lips to make up.

Great mouthfeel as well. I almost hated to swollow the brew it was so refreshing on the palate. Very remarkable drinkability as well, especially considering all of the complex flavors and high abv.

I had a chance to try the 04/05 release version at a beer tasting in RFD. the brew was young, and randalized, and fantastic. Adam refined the recepie for the 2nd batch, and I can't wait to try the mature version!

Serving type: bottle

09-12-2004 13:49:23 | More by sideshowrob
Photo of Hefe
Hefe

Maryland

3.98/5  rDev +3.6%
look: 4.5 | smell: 4.5 | taste: 4 | feel: 4.5 | overall: 3

Tasted on 7/15/04. Served plastic tasting cup at the DFH - Avery Brewing tasting at R.F.D.

Appearance: Brown/gold with crimson highlights, and a sticky bit o' lacing.

Smell: Prune, date, caramel, honey, sherry, spice, yeast, alcohol.

Taste: Big flavors, golden raisin, toffeeish malt, plum, chocolate.

Mouthfeel: Huge, sweet, alcoholic, but not quite overpowering.

Drinkability: I attended a bourbon tasting recently, this reminded me a bit of the Booker's bourbon. Adam stated that this had just been bottled 4 weeks prior, so I'll give the benefit of the doubt. 4 weeks down, 4 years to go.

Serving type: bottle

07-19-2004 20:04:18 | More by Hefe
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Dogbrick

Ohio

4.2/5  rDev +9.4%
look: 4 | smell: 4.5 | taste: 4 | feel: 4 | overall: 4.5

Sampled at From The Vine beer tasting Jul 9th, 2004: Pours a ruby brown color with a medium thick and creamy beige head. Decent lacing. You know you are in trouble when you smell this one. Raisins, port wine, malt and chocolate abound. The body is very thick yet startlingly smooth, with flavors of dark fruit, malt, hops and dark chocolate. The alcohol is felt on the throat more than it is tasted. The finish is sweet with roasted malt and caramel. I was really suprised at how easy this beer is to drink, but taking on an entire bottle by myself might be a chore.

Serving type: bottle

07-14-2004 04:36:24 | More by Dogbrick
Photo of cokes
cokes

Wisconsin

3.53/5  rDev -8.1%
look: 4 | smell: 3.5 | taste: 3.5 | feel: 3.5 | overall: 3.5

Spits out a crimson rust topped briefly with tan suds, which don't so much vanish as flee, as fast as they can, to the periphery of the glass.
For a beer that's supposedly so toothsome, the aroma is not as all-encompassing as I would suspect. It's all prune juice, coupled with dark berries, and traced by earthy Belgian-inspired yeastiness, then heavily fortified with the dryish, sweet grainy fumes of $5 jug Vodka. Really, though, it doesn't smell bad.
This is as vividly pruney as any beer can be. There's a secondary baked impression. Like prune bread. And also backings of caramel. Berries too, and more and more molasses as it heats. Throughout the later half, the grapey wranglings of middle-of-the-road Brandy hold sway. It's not the nasal-cavity searing heat of the really cheap shit, but it's lacking the finesse and cohesiveness of something with real quality. Bits of yeast-induced(?) lemony tartness poke through, along side with raisin bread. Then that swill vodka from the nose hits the throat with the subtlety of a forest fire. A bit of a sugared orange appears amidst the flames, especially as it warms. Any hops here are wasted.
Full bodied, thick, and initially semi-lively with carbonation. It leaves and the fluid becomes still, glossy and a touch sticky.
For all purposes, this is pushed to an ABV that it has no business reaching for, and it suffers as a result. It's fucking booze, not beer in any classic sense. There is not much for nuance. It's all prune juice, and port, and brandy, and vodka-heavy screwdrivers. It is absolutely ham-fisted and forced. But there are elements that work, even though it's more akin to a barleywine/eisbock cross.
Overall, this is notably flawed attempt that happened to stumble into something that suited my mood. While this review has been deliberated, the score has varied between a 3.1 and a 4.4. The final tally positions this somewhere down the middle. I can't say I truly enjoyed this as "beer", I guess I just desired a cocktail with some bite this evening. A less toothy evening, and I might find this unbearable.

As for you? I'll issue a big caveat emptor, and....

Some day, this might be exactly right....you know, those days when you're chompin' for some prune-and-molasses-augmented diesel. Other days, you'll likely prefer the unadulterated gas to this. And that's probably a cheaper way to go.

Serving type: bottle

07-02-2004 07:34:48 | More by cokes
Photo of feloniousmonk
feloniousmonk

Minnesota

3.88/5  rDev +1%
look: 3.5 | smell: 4 | taste: 4 | feel: 4 | overall: 3.5

Clear, rosy red color, good pale tannish head that fizzles down to a thin wafer right away.
Aroma, big sweetness, cherries and brandy, and big, fat booze. Medicinal and a tad bit harsh...thick with alky-hol, hot and horribly burnished.
Taste already: BAM! Massive flavor, huge, sweet fruit, and monstrous control of the palate. Tingles and tickles the tastebuds, maintains dominion over the mouth, has a clinging, cloying finish.
Damn, it's like they robbed from the vats of the Christian Brothers, really, or cribbed a few notes off of Ernie and Julie G., nearly cognac, this one, but lacks in drinkability, and the taste isn't delectable enough to make me happy all the way through this bomber.
I'll slowly savor it's sweetness, and abide by it's booziness through the end of the evening, and give thanks to ColoradoBeerMan for delivering it to my door!

Serving type: bottle

06-16-2004 07:18:10 | More by feloniousmonk
Photo of hobbes2112
hobbes2112

Texas

4.33/5  rDev +12.8%
look: 4 | smell: 4 | taste: 4.5 | feel: 5 | overall: 4

22 oz bomber

Whoa...this is intense!

Deep brown with red sides in color, small offwhite head that quickly disappears leaving small lace.

Smell: Well first we have dark fruits (figs, plums) some hops and surprisingly little alcohol considering the content.

Taste, what a mouthful! That is some seriously powerful stuff. You get the dark fruit again, serious malt taste is increased by the alcohol and sweet Belgian sugars.

Mouth is amazing, front to back taste, dry/sweet spicy, sharp and round! What a pleasure of a beverage.

This is a special beer for when the time is right. The alcohol is a bit intense for the size of the bottle, but hey just plan for it!

Serving type: bottle

06-13-2004 03:10:29 | More by hobbes2112
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Rastacouere

Quebec (Canada)

3.53/5  rDev -8.1%
look: 4 | smell: 3.5 | taste: 3.5 | feel: 4.5 | overall: 3

Cheers Raindog for ruining my palate Copper body, rather clear. Off-white film which is actually raher impressive for a 15% beer. Nose is very alcoholic, overpoweringly so, but I must admit there’s lots of good stuff under. A huge fruity malt of plums, peachs, maple, caramel. Subdued hops profile hide behind the nose burning alcohol. Palate is rather complex of an undescribable intensity. Every bit of your mouth is attacked with flavor and such a beer just can’t be balanced, no matter the malt/hops effect. Beyond words sweetness of maple, toffee. Burning lingering bitterness attack. It honores its name as being a mere agressivity piece of a beer. It would actually be very interesting to contemplate without the gross alcoholic burn. This is tongue-messing, a tongue sunburn, but so complex underneath.. yummy chocolate, plums, dates.. Very full bodied, low-medium carbonation level. Anyway, you know what you’re in for when you buy this, don’t you? It’s worth trying.

Serving type: bottle

06-07-2004 22:05:19 | More by Rastacouere
Photo of Dmann
Dmann

California

4.7/5  rDev +22.4%
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!

Serving type: bottle

06-04-2004 10:30:20 | More by Dmann
Photo of ppoitras
ppoitras

Massachusetts

2.73/5  rDev -28.9%
look: 4 | smell: 3.5 | taste: 2.5 | feel: 3 | overall: 2

22oz bottle obtained via trade with Pisskynights. Thanks for the opportunity... Presentation included foiled cap.

Poured into an imperial pint glass, formed a frothy 1" of beige head. Brew is a deeply red amber shade, and lacing is excellent. Aroma is deeply of fruits, with a slight alcohol tinge to it. mainly of hops, but the malt is also evident, just in the minority. Taste is WHOA. Burns my slightly chapped lips with all the alcohol floating around, similar what I would expect a mouthful of rubbing alcohol would be like. The malt and fruit flavors are present initially, but are quickly and completely run over by the alcohol. Disappointing to not even be able to appreciate some of the aspects of the brew, since other aspects are so overpowering. Mouthfeel rating isn't as low as the taste or drinkability, because eventually the mouth goes a bit numb to the alcohol taste. Drinkability is low, because you certainly wouldn't be drinking more than one at a sitting, and the presentation of a 22oz bottle of 15.7% beer is kind of dumb, in my opinion. It'll be lasting the rest fo the evening for me, and I do not foresee restocking another one for my fridge, unless it were for a tasting with visitors.

Serving type: bottle

05-31-2004 23:44:20 | More by ppoitras
Photo of granger10
granger10

Wisconsin

2.93/5  rDev -23.7%
look: 4.5 | smell: 3 | taste: 3 | feel: 3.5 | overall: 2

I am glad to say I have encountered "The Beast" and survived, barely. This is the biggest beer I have ever had, by far! Bottle says brewed in 2004, so this is very young. I could tell it was young just upon the opening of it. Strong alcohol scent burned my nosehairs. The pour was very nice. It had a mohagany red color with a full light colored tan head. The aroma is alcohol solvent and maybe a little dark and dry fruit flavors. The taste was extremely complex. Too many flavors to mention. It really opened itself up the more it warmed and became much more drinkable. The initial flavor when cold was straight alcohol and red grapes. As it warmed more fruits like apples, pineapples, pears, and a little nectarine flavor emerged. Ester alcohol was there the whole time though and dominated my palate. I could taste the added Belgian candy sugars and brown sugars in it. Hops weren't strong enough IMO but were there towards the end. The finish was quite acidic and alcoholic flavored as well. Needless to say the mouthfeel was huge and thick and chewy. I had trouble drinking too much of this though and drinkability is definitely limited. Maybe it should be made in smaller bottles as well? This beer could age for many years and produce numerous different flavors. I applaud Avery for this attempt but it was not ready yet IMO. I don't think that this is a Belgian either, more of a strong ale. I need to get some and age them, just like the Czar.

Serving type: bottle

05-02-2004 16:36:08 | More by granger10
Photo of merlin48
merlin48

Kentucky

4.25/5  rDev +10.7%
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.

Serving type: bottle

04-29-2004 21:38:59 | More by merlin48
Photo of Billolick
Billolick

New York

4.13/5  rDev +7.6%
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

Serving type: bottle

04-23-2004 11:22:13 | More by Billolick
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halfpgl

Maryland

3.4/5  rDev -11.5%
look: 4.5 | smell: 3 | taste: 3.5 | feel: 4 | overall: 3

Dark red hues almost wine like in the glass with minimal head. The nose hints of a barley wine but not as pungent. The alcohol grabs you with the first taste but then quickly subsides as the rich spices in the malt take over. The finish lingers on your tongue and gives your whole mouth a nice coating of caramel or butterscotch.

This is a big beer and seems like something you’d want to share at a tasting instead of drinking the whole thing. It’s good but the beer is in between worlds of Grand Cru and Barley wine…I think I’ll move on.

Serving type: bottle

04-18-2004 17:04:17 | More by halfpgl
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kbub6f

New York

3.85/5  rDev +0.3%
look: 4 | smell: 4 | taste: 4 | feel: 4.5 | overall: 3

I gave this thing a pretty violent pour and was rewarded with a small, tan/yellowy head that died fast to film. Oh well. The beer is a dark, dark red and clear. It almost looks like a red wine. Mondo Sucro in the nose. Also: grapes, spicy Belgianity, tangitude and ripe fruit. Alcohol interrupts the sweet, cloying, syrupy front. Middle turns thick. It's buttery, sweet malty, fruity. Alcohol reappears at the end, tying together overripe fruit, grapes, butter. And hops, to be sure. Some nice heat in that alco. This beer is very sweet. It's very strong. But there's some nice butter and malt in there too. I guess it's a little too sweet for me, but it's still a nice drink to sip over an evening.

Serving type: bottle

03-30-2004 22:54:11 | More by kbub6f
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palliko

California

2.15/5  rDev -44%
look: 3 | smell: 2.5 | taste: 2 | feel: 2 | overall: 2

A coppery red brown color in the glass, not much head, or lacing. Little carbonation. Okay. I cannot remember the last time I actually poured a beer down the drain. But I made an exception for this one - I drank about half of it, and then in a fit of disgust, dumped the other half. I know. I did wrong. I should have gagged the rest down - after all: 15% ABV... But PLEASE! What were the brewers thinking??? Dates and molasses and raisins are actually used in the beer. Not that it just TASTES like them, they are really there in your mouth!!! Good Lord!! Talk about yucky! AND harsh. I REALLY tried to like it. I LOVE Paulaner Salvator, a similar idea, but a hundred times better. Carob, alcohol and hot molasses burn your throat and stomach. Chewy texture. Ghastly aftertaste. Slightly clove-like Chimay Blau Belgian taste - kind of like drinking cough syrup!!!!

Serving type: bottle

03-29-2004 02:09:26 | More by palliko
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clvand0

Kentucky

2.98/5  rDev -22.4%
look: 4 | smell: 4 | taste: 2.5 | feel: 2.5 | overall: 3

This came in a cool 22oz bomber. Pours a dark amber color with a red tint, nice full head and leaves a little lacing on the glass. The aroma was very strong, with hints of alcohol, lots of malts, fruit. The taste is extremely strong. The strong malts are there as is the alcohol taste. At first I didn't like this at all, but then I looked again at the bottle and realized it was nearly 16% abv - allowing me to realize why alcohol was so strong in the taste. This is definately a beast of a beer, but I didn't like the flavor very much. Not very balanced in taste.

Serving type: bottle

03-26-2004 19:46:05 | More by clvand0
The Beast Grand Cru from Avery Brewing Company
86 out of 100 based on 981 ratings.