1. American Craft Beer Fest returns to Boston on May 29 & 30, featuring 640+ beers from 140+ brewers. Tickets are on sale now.

The Beast Grand Cru - Avery Brewing Company

Not Rated.
The Beast Grand CruThe Beast Grand Cru

Educational use only; do not reuse.
very good

1,220 Ratings
no score

(send 'em beer!)
Ratings: 1,220
Reviews: 578
rAvg: 3.86
pDev: 15.8%
Wants: 70
Gots: 328 | FT: 23
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:
Beer added by: Crosling on 01-29-2004

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: Ratings & Reviews
Sort by:  Recent | Likes | High | Low | Top Raters
Ratings: 1,220 | Reviews: 578 | Display Reviews Only:
Photo of JosephLondon
4.25/5  rDev +10.1%
look: 4 | smell: 4 | taste: 4.5 | feel: 4.5 | overall: 4

I remember having a fresh batch of The Beast back a few years ago, and i was not very impressed. Now that I am having this 2006 vintage in 2010, my mind has changed a little.

The appearance is good, nothing special though. There was a good two-fingered head which bursted with big pockets of air that seemed to consume the crown. Obviously the retention is lacking. Practically no lace with this beer. However the deep, ruby-brown substance that is left in my Maudite snifter is very attractive.

The nose reminds my of a plum tea tottie, if there was such a concoction. There is lots of plum up front with some alcohol in the background.

The taste, however, is more complex and perplexing to decipher. There is still plum tea, red grape in there as well, caramel covered apple and alcohol.

The feel is medium to thick, but very smooth and silky. The drink is good, considering this is, "The Beast".

Photo of WhatsNewinBooze
4.15/5  rDev +7.5%
look: 4 | smell: 4 | taste: 4.5 | feel: 3.5 | overall: 4

The 2009 release was good but not as great as past releases. This beer pours areddish brown with fine khaki head. On the nose you pick up sweet malt aromas with hints of plums, cherries and honey. The palate has a nice sweetness that helps balance out the heat of the alcohol with fine bubbles from the belgium yeast. Full bodied with flavors of dark cherries and maple syrup. The cherry flavors really linger in the mouth after the finish.

Photo of Sammy
3.53/5  rDev -8.5%
look: 4 | smell: 3.5 | taste: 3.5 | feel: 3.5 | overall: 3.5

Bottle at Beer Bistro. 2008 edition at 16% plus. Spicy aroma, pours a dark orange colour with Belgian yeast style head. The taste is sweet and spicy. alcohol warming. Not very complex. European hops, altogether drinkable but not all that interesting.

4.5/5  rDev +16.6%
look: 4.5 | smell: 4.5 | taste: 4.5 | feel: 4.5 | overall: 4.5

Deep amber/copper with burnt orange highlights. a finger of small bubble beige head. Some drippy thick laces that don't stick and slide right back into the glass.

Cherries, raisins, sour fruit, candi sugar, honey, woody, earthy, and some booze.

Syrupy candi sugar, honey, molasses, and booze. Raisins/tart cherries/sour dark fruit. Earthy and woody bitterness is left on the palette with some booze.

Sticky alcoholic syrup. Continuous steady carbonation. Full bodied without being heavy.

Good drinkability for a boozy beast. Complex and delish. One and Done.

Photo of SirSketch
3.55/5  rDev -8%
look: 3.5 | smell: 3.5 | taste: 3.5 | feel: 4 | overall: 3.5

A - Very thick (1 inch) tightly packed head. The beer itself is the cloudy, reddish-brown color of some weizenbocks.

S - Mainly a dark fruitiness derived from malt. Subtle chocolate and mocha coffee make an appearance. Very bold and complex. Some earthy hop smells.

T - Very, very sweet and sticky. Some of the same flavors as in the aroma, but with caramel and toasted malty flavors. Burnt sugar. A thought provoking beer.

M/D - A dry beer for being so sweet. Not as thick as one may imagine for a 14% beer. Definitely a sipper, but not a pain to drink.

Photo of LeviLovesBeer
3.63/5  rDev -6%
look: 4 | smell: 3.5 | taste: 4 | feel: 3.5 | overall: 3

Glassware - Brandy Snifter

A - Beautiful dark brown almost syrup like.

S - It is very boozy right away. Also, raisons and dates are prominate.

T - Despite the strong alcohol presence, I enjoyed the sweet date flavors. Also, maybe a hint of orange in there.

M - Heavy but good feel. Warm and smooth.

D - Tough to drink full bottle.

Over all this was a great drinking experience, however, I doubt I will try it again.

Photo of ktrillionaire
4.72/5  rDev +22.3%
look: 4 | smell: 4.5 | taste: 5 | feel: 4 | overall: 5

On-tap at the extremely awesome Dunedin Brewery green (beer-snob) room.

G – Snifter

A – Brown-chestnut in hue, slightly hazy, with a viscous shine to it; very little ring of head that clings to the edges of the glass, save for the random breakaway .

S – Sweet malt, with a roasted peat element, like a Wee Heavy. Also present are notes of wood, Cognac, and vanilla.

T – This beer is ridiculous! Very boozy; Cognac and Grand Marnier impressions are immediate and exceptionally powerful, but that is the point of this beer; there is an understated raisin, currant, dark fruit element in the palate as well. It certainly doesn't drink ‘hot’, by any means, actually very smooth. There is also a huge amount of malt in this beer and little or no discernible hop impact, but the malt is tempered by the vinous alcohol, and it all is balanced quite nice. Best not to warm it, as the sweet malty Beast within it swells like the Incredible Hulk; so keep it cold. And despite an extremely boozy flavor, it actually has a well-hidden ABV, drinking more like an 8% Barleywine than a 16%+ skullcrusher!

M – This is lightly carbonated, somewhat viscous and slick, but it works very well for the style.

D – This is a rare treat. But I will order it on-tap anytime I see it. So, very drinkable.

Photo of JohnGalt1
4.02/5  rDev +4.1%
look: 3.5 | smell: 4 | taste: 4 | feel: 4.5 | overall: 4

Ehh... probably not the best idea cracking this one .. but I really only feel like one beer ... so let's drink three slammed into one 12oz. Poured into my Delirium goblet. Bought this a while back from Brewforia.. Batch #6 is 16.31% ABV... Jesus.

foamy yellowish tan head... leaves little lace... this brew pours like oil... thick and viscous and coats the inside of the glass with hazed deep orange amber with every swirl.... looks like liquid caramel.

Nose is burning mead soaked figs... thick golden raisins...

Flavor is golden raisins macerated in cheap tawny port... sweet and malty.. the complexities seem a bit washed away by sugars and alcohol... drinkability is only higher, because it is such a sipper.

thick and surprisingly carbonated.... I could write more, but why bother.. this is something you have to try to really understand. Despite my negatives, I actually like this ... I'm just going to finish this now.. probably over the next hour or two.


Photo of chaz410
4.19/5  rDev +8.5%
look: 3.5 | smell: 4.5 | taste: 4.5 | feel: 4 | overall: 3.5

Got this...well, BEAST at the Flying Saucer.
Pours an amber red body with a finger length pale head.
Smell needs warming before you can appreciate it. It smells of sweet dried berries such as dates, figs and sour cherries. Alcohol is present in the smell but not overwhelming. Huge malty caramel character flowing through. Spice and fruit dance throughout the musky odor.
Taste is huge to say the least. Thick roasted corn and malases along with sweet figs and dark fruit. Lots of caramel and caramunich malts. Alcohol burn comes in at the finish and lingers for a while but it's completely worth it!
A smooth velvety mouthfeel and very sweet but not something you go back for seconds, each sips like taking three of any normal beer.

Photo of HeyItsChili
4.08/5  rDev +5.7%
look: 4 | smell: 3.5 | taste: 4.5 | feel: 4 | overall: 4

Picked up a bottle of this formidable brew at the Charleston Beer Exchange.

A - Poured into a a pint glass from a bottle. Pours a mostly clear, maybe 10% hazy dark amber with an almost nonexistent white head.

S - Extremely sweet. Brown sugary malts really give it a caramely mellow sweetness that belies the extreme ABV percentage to be found within.

T - Really tastes almost identical to the highly more heralded Xyauyu' by Birra Baladin. Superconcentrated hops underbite with much more pronounced aged and concentrated hops sweetness. Like a bitter, aged Worther's Original. The finish is extremely strong and alcoholic.

M - Mouthcoating, thick, substantial. AAAND WHAMMMY.

Photo of ryanonline
3.22/5  rDev -16.6%
look: 4 | smell: 4.5 | taste: 3 | feel: 3 | overall: 2

pours a reddish brown and damn near non existent head. not a lot of lacing.

smells malty, and malty on top of malty. with rasins and figs and brown sugar underneath all the malt. and some malt on the end.

theres that malt again. almost like bran, lots of booze too. still a little bit of raisin and fig.

mouthfeel is thick and viscous with sort of a resonating sourness in the finish, not terrible but..not good either.

drinkabiity? whats that?

if you want an extremely potent beer, then here's a good one to go to. but it really isn't even good in for a Belgian strong dark, many better examples are out there. however, just to really stretch your palate this is a one time must.

i edited my review twice, as this beer seems to warm VERY POORLY.

Photo of rgrholmes168
3.52/5  rDev -8.8%
look: 3.5 | smell: 4 | taste: 3.5 | feel: 3.5 | overall: 3

Second night of trying strong Avery brews. The Beast Grand Cru poured with a slight head on it that left quickly and did not leave any lace along the sides of the glass. Due to this being a heavy beer, it was not a big surprise that the foam did not stick around.
The beer had a nice aroma which was very sweet. The molasses that is brewed in the beer with the figs and raisins stick out in this beer.
The beer has a strong flavor to it. The beer seemed sticky and winey. A little more than what I expected even though the beer had a nice caramel color to it.
This beer is decent.

Photo of Squelch
2.64/5  rDev -31.6%
look: 2 | smell: 3 | taste: 2.5 | feel: 4 | overall: 2

Appearance: Opaque brown. Moderate Tan head. Very ugly.

Smell: Smells of hay and molasses. Unappetizing.

Taste: Tastes like liquid tootsie roll. Pretty clean. Fruity Esters abound.

Mouthfeel: Surprisingly light mouthfeel. Hot from the alcohol.

Drinkabiliy: an undrinkable beer. This is a sipper all the way. I did not like this one and couldn't finish it.

Photo of RiekerStarBrew
3.5/5  rDev -9.3%
look: 3.5 | smell: 3.5 | taste: 3.5 | feel: 3.5 | overall: 3.5

The beer was served from a traditional 12 oz. In my pint glass the beer appeared to be a medium brown with ruby highlights. After one wiff, you will determine..."This is a big-ass beer!". It had a pleasant malty-sweetness with a butterscotch undertone (probably a contribution of caramel malts and higher alcohol). No hops were present in the aroma. After one sip, you will further determine..."This is a really big-ass beer!". The flavor was extremely sweet and malty. There was a low hop bitterness present, but nothing could balance out this jem. The alcohol was perceivable in the flavor as well. At times, there was an underlying toffee note like you were biting into a heath bar or something. The body of the beer was full and complex and the finish was sweet and fruity (dark fruit-plums, figs, ect.). Overall, the beer could be summed up like this...a big-ass beer. This is a sipper through and through.

Photo of slasher007
4/5  rDev +3.6%
look: 4 | smell: 4 | taste: 4 | feel: 4 | overall: 4

Pours a light amber with notes of red and a touch of brown. Almost mahogony. A creamy tan head of about one-finger of foam sits on top. Tastes of raisins, molasses, grapefruit, sweet malts, brown sugar, and candy sugar.

This is one that I'm not sure if I could drink more than one of in one sitting. Overall, a pretty big beer that was not one dimensional. Really enjoyed the complex malts and honey sweetness that sort of offset the alcohol.

Photo of Spineypanda
4.2/5  rDev +8.8%
look: 4 | smell: 4 | taste: 4.5 | feel: 4 | overall: 4

Has a dark amber color and pours with no head, and a decent amount of lacing.
Smells of extreme sweets and dark fruits. The alcohol smell is covered by this but still is present.
Has a strong sweet taste with a serious amount of tartness, almost a spicy-tart...
The dark fruits, plums and cherries come through in the taste.
A bit of carbonation but not a whole lot exists.

A very interesting beer, and pretty hard to review. Complex and strong as hell!

Photo of beer2day
4.12/5  rDev +6.7%
look: 4 | smell: 4.5 | taste: 4 | feel: 4 | overall: 4

2005 vintage aged in the beer fridge. Waited for the first really cold night in NC to break this one out.

Pours a very deep red with strong brown notes. No head to speak of. Laces extremely well!

Strong molasses and tart cherries in the nose. Alcohol masquerades well behind the dominant aromas. Belgian candy sugar is there, too, as expected.

Hits strong and thick up front. Tart-to-sweet cherries, more thick molasses and weak caramel flavors. Finishes slightly bitter but more tart. Decent hop profile on the back end, but way more malt body and tart fruit overshadow.

Feel is very thick, one of the thickest I can remember.

This is a bottle that should be shared. 12oz is more, more, more than enough for any one person - more on the body than the alcohol though.

Photo of koopa
3.78/5  rDev -2.1%
look: 4.5 | smell: 4 | taste: 4 | feel: 4.5 | overall: 2.5

12oz 2006 Vintage bottle.

Appearance: Pours an attractive mahogany with a creamy billowy buttery crown that is about 2 fingers and recedes to a lush 1 finger head. Good retention and loads of lace!

Smell: Caramel and butter with toffee malt, spicy yeast, and a hint of mellowed out underlying alcohol warmth.

Taste: Same as smell but with much more alcohol presence and a strong rum raisin plum like fruitiness with a good amount of brown sugar remaining. This would be delicious in about 2 more years I think.

Mouthfeel: Lush, creamy, yet not thick and heavy. Sublime!

Drinkability: Way strong and it is still showing after 3 years of aging.

Photo of beveritt
4.44/5  rDev +15%
look: 4 | smell: 5 | taste: 4.5 | feel: 4 | overall: 4

Presentation: 2004 vintage with an ABV of 18.1%. A warm up before I start studying for my law school finals. Poured from a 22 oz brown bomber into a Duvel chalice. Label is predominantly black, with The Beast is red foil letters and a subtle image if a large toothed something.

Appearance: Pours with 1 finger of light tan head that dissipates very quickly. Eventually the only remaining evidence of a head is a small island above the point of nucleation; disappearing as soon as it comes out of solution in a constant process of renewal. The beer itself is a beautiful mahogany, clear, but dark enough as to be opaque. Second pour has some more particulate matter. The bottle retains a thin sludge of well compacted sediment.

Smell: Smell is strong enough that I picked it up as soon as I cracked the bottle. Strong, sweet aromas of cherries and figs. Alcohol sweetness is very present.

Taste: Sweet sugary notes upfront, followed by a vanilla cherry flavor. Finishes with strong caramel malt sweetness and alcohol sweetness.

Mouthfeel: Higher than average carbonation level on this one. Body is amazingly good, thick and rich.

Drinkability: Well, this one pretty much kicked my ass. i can barely type after 22 oz of 18.1% beer. A great sipper that presents powerful flavors without being overwhelming in an y one area. Would I ever get another one? Sure, if I see a 6 year old beer sitting on the shelves, I'll grab one, but I imagine this was kind of a one shot deal. Glad people like sprinkle exist to run beer stores with vintage brews.

Photo of godfathermg57
4.35/5  rDev +12.7%
look: 4.5 | smell: 4.5 | taste: 4.5 | feel: 4 | overall: 4

Poured into chalice.

Very little head with a deep orange color. The taste is very flavorful with strong hints of fruits, sugar, and molasses. Full-bodied taste and certainly a sipper. The high alcohol is as expected very warming, but complements the beer nicely. Overall a very complex and interesting brew.

Photo of Daniellobo
4.03/5  rDev +4.4%
look: 4 | smell: 3.5 | taste: 4 | feel: 4.5 | overall: 4.5

Deep sipper in draft form, nice in complexity and assertive booziness. Close to the bottle version but the draft, while a tad fresher, feels like it might compromise somewhat the smell and slow enjoyability of the brew.

Presentation: 10 oz draft serving. Menu only notes style as "Grand Cru", and Alc. by Vol. (14.90%) Served in a thick glass goblet.

A - Clear deep amber to amber brown pour with a short head that fades quickly leaving a surface ring.

S - Faint fruity sweet nose over an alcoholic note. Malt woven with caramel and sugars, dark fruits.

T - Very rich and complex flavor. It is a bit subdued by a bit of a colder presentation than what it would benefit the drink the most. Full caramel malt notes with a hefty fruity alcohol coating the experience. While the booze drives it, it is nevertheless rich in sugar and dried fruit notes. Less of a distinctive Belgium yeast and sugar flavors in this draft version.

M - Full body with a sticky and almost creamy smoothness and adequate carbonation.

D - A nice sipper, complex around the alcohol but well carried.

Notes: Ironically having had the bottle version before, the freshness from the draft serving seems to be a bit compromised by a minor lost of complexity. Decent glassware but not the best here, and a bit of a colder presentation than what would be most beneficial, cuts the brew a bit short. It is still a remarkable brew, and a great finding on tap.

Photo of Fweezle
4.44/5  rDev +15%
look: 4 | smell: 5 | taste: 4.5 | feel: 4 | overall: 4

A nice surprise out of the cellar, what was though to be a 2006 was actually a 2004. Bonus!

Poured a dark deep brown with a thin head that disappeared in a matter of minutes. Looks like a huge glass of bourbon. Carbonation is mild but present, perfect for this beer. Smell is of vanilla, caramel, and dark fruits. Maybe a little tobacco and a healthy dose of alcohol. Superb. Tastes much of the smell. Slightly sweet and syrupy but not cloying, tastes of raisins, dark dried fruits, vanilla, caramel, and a bit of funk. Nice alcohol bite but not overpowering - well balanced with the rest of the flavor profile. Feels good on the palate, coating but not overly thick. Drinkability is a bit low just because of how big this beer is but 5 year has mellowed it significatly. If you can get your hands on a bottle, 5 years seems to be the "sweet spot".

Photo of cindyjeffsmith
4.72/5  rDev +22.3%
look: 4.5 | smell: 5 | taste: 5 | feel: 4.5 | overall: 4

Avery The Beast Grand Cru 2006 purchased from Liquid Solutions.
appearance - Burgundy, pretty fat head for a 14.6'er that fades quickly. This is a pretty brew.
smell - Oh man. This has the promise of an aged Tawny Port. Honey and molasses with some citrus hiding behind.
taste - this is why I got into big beers. Decadent. Almost overwhelming. Some spice in there too. According to the Avery site, nutmeg.
This bad boy is a sipper. Probably best shared with a friend.

Photo of qchic
3.62/5  rDev -6.2%
look: 3.5 | smell: 4 | taste: 4 | feel: 3.5 | overall: 2.5

Appears a murky brown, much like an iced tea (and a sugary one at that). Little head after an aggressive pour leaving an ivory ring around the edges. Aroma has plenty going on, evoking thoughts of wine and spirits, let alone beer. Certainly boozy, but that's stating the obvious after reading the abv on this one. Smells tangy with caramel, tropical fruits including pineapple, bread, dried fruits, and bubble gum. More caramel and toffee in the flavor along with bitter orange, prunes, and raisins. Has an immediate warming effect, and the syrupy mouthfeel with low carbonation can only be sipped. Not as beastly as anticipated, but this one probably mellowed since being brewed in '05. Fresh, it could have been a different story. Not sure if it's worth the money as I don't think it would leave a lasting impression, but it did make for a relaxing evening.

Photo of roblowther
3.44/5  rDev -10.9%
look: 4.5 | smell: 3 | taste: 4 | feel: 3.5 | overall: 2.5

Popped a bottle to celebrate the completion of the construction phase of the shelves that have filled my last two weeks. Pours ruby-tinted brown and leaves a razor-thin light tan head that leaves lacing that just won't give up. Smells like port. Very strong alcohol smell. This is scaring me a little. Tastes like caramel, wood, and butterscotch. And scotch. Well, alcohol. Waka waka waka....that's warm going down. Mouthfeel is buttery and a little tingly. And warm. Drinkability is, well...wow, this is boozy. Its a very interesting take on the style. I love that they're not afraid to experiment. Well, played, sirs, well played.

The Beast Grand Cru from Avery Brewing Company
87 out of 100 based on 1,220 ratings.