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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.
very good

1,164 Ratings
no score

(send 'em beer!)
Ratings: 1,164
Reviews: 558
rAvg: 3.85
pDev: 16.1%
Wants: 67
Gots: 288 | FT: 15
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: 1,164 | Reviews: 558 | Display Reviews Only:
Photo of Grabbin2nd
4.53/5  rDev +17.7%
look: 4 | smell: 4.5 | taste: 4.5 | feel: 4 | overall: 5

From Notes: 3/30/09
Avery Brewing Co.
The Beast Grand Cru
Batch #6 bottled in 2008
Belgian Strong Dark Ale
16.31% Abv.
12oz. bottle into oversize stemless wine glass.

Appearance= Deep brown, tan color. Looks kinda like a barleywine...Not much of a head.

Smell= Alcohol. Raisins. It's intense. Overwhelms with pungent alcohol. Wondeful nose when it warms up!

Taste= Alcohol. Syrupy, very fruity. I'm liking it. Big beer to say the least. My roommate says it's like drinking Aunt Jamima syrup. Wow.

Mouthfeel= Carbonation, syrupy goodness. Wow.

Drinkability= Sipper. I'm going slow, real slow. Dude. This thing is a beast. Just fucking me up. Wow. Did I say wow? Overwhelms the senses, but I really dig it.

Photo of becktone
4.45/5  rDev +15.6%
look: 4 | smell: 4 | taste: 5 | feel: 4 | overall: 4

From notes 4-14-09

bottled in 2006

Eye: This one pours a hazy medium brown with definite hues of red. Head formation and retention are good, its stable at over half a finger, and for a beer this big that seems real good. Head appearance is tan and creamy looking. Overall pretty nice looking, nothing to write home bout though.

Nose: Alcohol and dark fruit right up front-raisins. Also something going on in here that I can't quite put a finger on, definitely a yeasty tone, bready, and somewhat earthy but real hard to describe. The label states that there dates in here, I've never smelled a date but I'm gettting something that instinctively I know to be dates. Really hard for me to get much more than that, alcohol and dark fruit aromas are so strong its tough to get anything else-at least enough of it to be able to describe it. Good, but nothing great.

Tongue: Very big and very complex. Sweet honey tones are right upfront. Dark fruit is evident, some "chocolate-esque" flavors towards the end, some dry roasted flavor, what seems to be a bit of earthy woodiness (much different than oakiness from a barrel though). Alcohol evident. This is one big beer and its very complex; a definite sipper. I almost get something that is vanillaish too...actually more like a frappuccino, french vanilla flavor. The more I drink it the more it begins to taste like some kind of specialty coffee drink, very cool. Finish is dry. This is a great beer that I can see aging with the best of them.

edit: Rummy quality to this beer, also reminds me a bit of Jamacian Coffee...coffee with spiced or dark rum added. Molasses also makes itself present. The more I drink of it the more it reveals itself and the better it keeps getting. This one has quite a few faces.

Feel and Drinkability: Heavy bodied with low carbonation, perfect for what this beer is. This is one that I'd pick up more of were the price a bit cheaper, at $9.99/12oz its a little steep. This is one that I'm not sure if I could drink more than one of in one sitting, so perhaps its price is about right.

Photo of rhinos00
4.05/5  rDev +5.2%
look: 4 | smell: 4 | taste: 4 | feel: 4.5 | overall: 4

Had this @ The Kitchen in Boulder, CO. Poured into an oversized wine glass. 2008 Vintage.

A- Pours a nice caramel color. Very cider-like. Solid two fingers width of off-white head. Some lacing as the beer was consumed.

S- Sweet and boozy. Lots of malt, honey and molasses throughout. Lots of alcohol in the finish.

T- Very much like the smell. The alcohol was not as overpowering as I thought. Upfront lots of sweet malts, honey is very evident. There is a slight dark fruit addition midway through. The beer finishes with a nice alcoholic burn that warms up the body.

M- Medium bodied with good consistency for this type of beer. Coats the palate rather well and has decent carbonation.

D- Much more drinkable than I imagined, especially given the +16% abv. While there was an alcohol burn and boozy smell, the alcohol really did not overpower the taste. This one went down pretty easy given the circumstances.

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 meatmallet
4.1/5  rDev +6.5%
look: 4 | smell: 4.5 | taste: 4 | feel: 4 | overall: 4

Appearance: Has a dark red body with a medium tan head. You cant see through this one it looks super thick.

Smell: Alcohol and spice really stand out in this beer. All of the usual dark fruits are there also and the smell is very sweet.

Taste: The first thing I said was WOW. This is so sweet and strong it will set you back at first. It did tone down as I drank it but man it was strong.

Mouthfeel/drinkability: Very full bodied. It feels thick and creamy in the mouth.

Photo of siradmiralnelson
4.22/5  rDev +9.6%
look: 4 | smell: 4 | taste: 4.5 | feel: 4 | overall: 4

Poured from 12oz bottle into Chalice.

A. Nice carbonated 1 finger head, that quickly disappears. Reddish Copper color.

S. Fruity Goodness. Cherries, raisins, plums. Molasses smell. Sweetness from the malt. Alochol.

T. Wow. Incredible in your face flavor. To describe this beer in one word "Complex". Flavors from malt, hops, fruit, spice. Definite alochol burn.

M. Thick full bodied mouthfeel, but yet still smooth.

D. I can say that I am happy that I have tried this beer. The Beast definitely packs a high octane punch. Its a sipper for sure, but one I wouldn't mind sipping on again.

Photo of glid02
3.9/5  rDev +1.3%
look: 4 | smell: 3.5 | taste: 4 | feel: 4 | overall: 4

Picked this up from the Liquor Loft in Tallahassee.

Pours a clear orange-amber color with a half-finger off-white head. The head recedes into a thin pancake kept up by constant nucleation but leaves almost no lacing.

Smells of very sweet malts with good amounts of pears and scuppernong grapes. There's also a decent amount of honey in there.

Tastes similar to how it smells. Sweet malts are quickly joined by sweet fruits and honey. The ending manages to be slightly bitter but leaves a sweet film that sticks around.

Mouthfeel is good. It's got a nice thickness with solid carbonation that goes down smoothly.

Drinkability is good. I split a 12 oz. bottle of this but found myself wanting a bit more.

Overall this is a tasty high ABV beer that's worth a shot.

Photo of jacobseyb
3.13/5  rDev -18.7%
look: 3.5 | smell: 3.5 | taste: 3 | feel: 3 | overall: 3

A=Little head, deep amber/ruby color

S=sweet malts, alcohol, and ??raisins??

T=sweet malts, alcohol very out front, fruity notes

M=light carbonation with some oiliness

D=not really, alcohol is over the top, not very hidden, and sweetness is too much.

Photo of sevopie
3.05/5  rDev -20.8%
look: 4.5 | smell: 3.5 | taste: 3.5 | feel: 2.5 | overall: 1.5

Appearance - Ruby/amber with a light brown head.

Smell - Salt and vinegar chips are what I smell...but there's some bittered fruits and caramel malts.

Taste - Candy sugars with the bitter fruits again. Alcohol is very present, almost like a rum in the presentation.

Mouthfeel - Syrupy with a medium carbonation.

Drinkability - Ouch.. this one stings. Flavorful, but hard to drink, this is a few steps below Mephistopheles in my mind.

Photo of ATLbeerDog
4.1/5  rDev +6.5%
look: 4 | smell: 4 | taste: 4 | feel: 5 | overall: 4

Pours a dark reddish/brown with just a slight haze. A thick frothy 2 finger yellow head crowns the brew. Smells of sweet malts, dark fruits, and a ton of alcohol notes dominate the nose. First sip is all sweet malty goodness, plums, apricots, and warming alcohol that just screams high ABV. The sweetness remains throughout as some bitterness appears in the finish. A creamy mouthfeel that is perfectly carbonated just adds to the experience and for a moment distracts from the beer's in your face boozyness. The lacing covers most of the glass.

Photo of Fatduck
2.75/5  rDev -28.6%
look: 4.5 | smell: 3.5 | taste: 2.5 | feel: 3 | overall: 2

Bottled 2008.

The beast is a beautiful thing. A transparent bright red when held up to the light of my TV. Small tan head, that won't fade completely. Is this really a Strong Dark? Who cares, its time to take a sip.

Smells and taste like a syrupy mess. Lots of sugar/molasses, but in a bad, backwoods moonshine way. I wanted more from this brew, I've heard such good things, but I guess this one is just a love hate beer, and for me this one is damn near a drain pour, but I decided to power through and enjoy the good buzz.

Mouth is obviously viscous and leaves a layer in your mouth that is sickly sweet. Drinkablity is laughable, there is none, its a sipper at best and a thing to force down at worst.

Photo of twiggamortis420
3.98/5  rDev +3.4%
look: 3.5 | smell: 4 | taste: 4 | feel: 5 | overall: 3.5

2005 vintage. Pours a dark amber color with a thin light beige head. Not much retention, but pretty good lacing.

HUGE nose that is very darkly fruity - raisins, figs and ripe plums. Sweet residual sugars like honey and maple syrup make an appearance, as well as some (to be expected in a 5 year old beer) oxidized malted milk and cardboard notes.

Mega flavored complex sipper here, alot going on in the flavor. Very much reminds me of port wine. First, the alcohol slaps you around like a dirty pimp, then the nearly ridiculous levels of residual sugars and dark fruits hammer away at the tastebuds. Everything about The Beast is big - flavor, body and smell. All that being said, I enjoyed the experience and might buy another, even at the steep price of $8 for a 12oz. Crazy, crazy beer.

Photo of dfillius
4.15/5  rDev +7.8%
look: 3.5 | smell: 3.5 | taste: 4.5 | feel: 4.5 | overall: 4

Poured into a wine glass. (vintage 2006, consumed in late 2008)
I'm a little wary of this one as I purchased it with Samael and was underwhelmed by Samael.
A: Gentle pour yields 1/2 finger of head that disappears quickly. Chill hazy (cleared) medium brown with red hints. Looks like raisin juice.
S: Alcohol - whiskey; raisin, milk chocolate, tart fruit, cinnamon and chili powder.
T: Sweet, very sweet. Quits just before being cloying. Less boozy than I thought it would be - almost not at all. Raisin comes through with a little heat later. Honey. Very port-like, good port.
M: A tiny bit of heat, sweet, syrupy. Pleasant.
D: High, surprisingly. This is one tasty beer, worthy of the Grand Cru moniker - at least among the three big Avery beers (Samael, Mephistopheles and this)

Photo of grayburn
4.6/5  rDev +19.5%
look: 4.5 | smell: 4.5 | taste: 4.5 | feel: 4.5 | overall: 5

The beast emerges from its glass lair a pissed off murky reddish brown, a good bit of foaming at the mouth, and leaving its mark on the glass the whole time. Pretty beer.
Raisins galore with some warming alcohol and slight piny and floral hop notes. Very sweet and warming scent, almost like mulled apple cider on steroids.
The taste is incredibly well rounded, rum soaked raisins dance around with piney hops and other yeasty dried fruits. Caramel mixes well with the copious alcohol to really tame the beast into a civilized house cat...in flavor anyway.
The carbonation sets off an excellent mouthfeel, which is the approved gateway to the ridiculous drinkability of this brew. Just be careful, once the beast is out its out. Drink safely...at home.

Photo of DrJay
3.13/5  rDev -18.7%
look: 3.5 | smell: 3.5 | taste: 3 | feel: 3 | overall: 3

Bottle courtesy of Med via Cellar BIF. Thanks!
2005. Murky reddish brown. Looks thick and flat during the pour, but tiny bubbles rise to the surface and form a thin beige ring. Fine spotty lacing, decent retention for what's there. Lots of alcohol in the aroma, some fusels, with plenty of fruit character - pineapple, generic tropical - and caramel sweetness. Lots of fruitiness in the flavour too, tropical and strawberry, with caramel sweetness backing it up. Alcohol was all over the place as well, with mild solvent character. Texture was a little rough, plenty of alcohol warmth, lowish carbonation with a heavy body. Fairly underwhelming, not unpleasant by any means, but it didn't come together for me.

Photo of Haybeerman
3.2/5  rDev -16.9%
look: 4 | smell: 3.5 | taste: 3 | feel: 3.5 | overall: 3

A: Clouded crimson red color. Poured a 4 finger vigorous reddish brown head with fair retention. Broken globs of lacing. Decanted continually.

S: Very sweet and strong alcohol. Hop spices, both flower and citrus, in the background; they are largely masked by the alcohol.

T: Alcohol. Some grainy sweetness. Lightly bitter and very dry in the finish.

M: Medium body. Ample carbonation. Dry and hot.

D: ABV alone enough to keep ut from being very drinkable. I grew tired of the hot alcohol and the way it masked most anything else that may have been in the beer.

Photo of jsgpu90
4.4/5  rDev +14.3%
look: 4.5 | smell: 4 | taste: 4.5 | feel: 4.5 | overall: 4.5

Wow. I was drinking homebrews for most of the night and found a Beast sitting in my fridge. What a great way to end the night! Holy smokes, I was not expecting this. The color is a beautiful amber with a trace of a head. The smell is slightly aromatic. The taste is more than I expected. It has a slightly sour/acidic taste with a strong fruit presence. Mouthfeel is very thick, almost syrup-like. Drinkability is very good, but I don't recommend drinking this after afew rye home brews. The two don't mix. Cheers to ABC for this fine beer.

Photo of mtrentm
3.78/5  rDev -1.8%
look: 4.5 | smell: 4 | taste: 4 | feel: 3.5 | overall: 3

Poured from a 12oz. bottle into a snifter.

A: A very dark crimson red color with a light tan head that stays for a while.

S: Lots of different sweet smells on this one. A nice smell of honey raisins & molasses. Can pick up the alcohol as well.

T: A very fruity taste upfront. Mostly dried fruits, raisins & figs. Very syrupy & sweet, a sipper of a beer for sure.

M: A sticky syrup like texture coats my mouth. Not a lot of carbonation on this one.

D: Like I mentioned before, a sweet syrupy sipper.

Photo of BierFan
3.93/5  rDev +2.1%
look: 4.5 | smell: 4 | taste: 4 | feel: 4 | overall: 3.5

The label lists the abv as being 14.9%. I just realized that the label also says that the beer was bottled in 2005. Pouring the 12 ounce bottle into a flute.

Appearance: Dark red body blocks alot of light. The head is light tan and sticks around for quite awhile.

Smell: Smooth spicy and herbal alcohol is right upfront. Dark fruits, such as figs and raisins.

Taste: Very sweet. It actually made my cheeks pucker when I took my first mouthful. Raisins are definitely in the flavor.

Photo of EnojysAnyBeer
4.6/5  rDev +19.5%
look: 4.5 | smell: 5 | taste: 4.5 | feel: 4.5 | overall: 4.5

This is my 2nd beer above 15%ABV. The 1st was 120 Minute IPA from Dogfish Head and I loved it.

Got a single bottle of Batch 6 brewed in 2008. 1.135 OG and 16.31%ABV. Truly a beast

A- Dark red grape colored body with head that sticks around. This beer is barely translucent. I could go for some lacing

S- A "potion" of a beer, this brew reeks of all sorts of interesting herbs and spices. Primarily a fruity sweetness flavor from the brewing sugars. Hints of raisons and other dark fruits along with some spicey, herbal hop tones.

T- This flavor will coat your mouth and bombard your taste-buds. Beware, this beer is soaked in tasty syrups and sugars. Very sweet, very fruity, and very herbal. Slightly bitter and sour but I would have been happier with more hopping.

M- Syrup-like with a high FG. Carbonation helps it feel lively. Feels filling and refreshing going down

D- If you can handle an extreme beer, this one is a must. Alcohol is high but does not detract from flavor. Drink slowly and carefully. I drank 1/2 a bottle and recapped it because I was getting heartburn and I wanna drink some "clean" beer with dinner.

Photo of CHSLBrew
4.47/5  rDev +16.1%
look: 3.5 | smell: 4 | taste: 5 | feel: 4.5 | overall: 4

Poured into a snifter.

A-Poured a deep amber beer, hazy from being unfiltered. Tan head grew quickly but retained minimally. Sparse bubbles remained.

S-Intially I noticed a light chocolate with a slight toasty malt. Then my nose was bombarded by an onslaught of spices and fruits, thick and unrelenting.

T-Oh boy, where to start. Very fruity, with lots of dried fruits (raisins were in there), but also some ripening stemmed fruits. Toasted bread comes through, when its able. Spicy nuances fade in and out. There was clearly some alcohol flavor to it, but this was much smoother than I expected. Overall, this beer has much intensity and complexity in its flavor profile.

M-Minimal carbonation allows this full-bodied brew to stand on its own, while still providing a slight zing upon swallowing. Chewey body, and almost creamy at times. The alcohol is so well-hidden that it scares me, while still providing that pleasant warmth in my belly.

D-Great drinkability, in moderation :D very complex flavor and a smoothness that hides its high ABV.

Photo of Irie
3.58/5  rDev -7%
look: 4 | smell: 4 | taste: 3.5 | feel: 3 | overall: 3.5

Beautiful clear body with a ruby red color. Little head but good lacing. Smells like a wonderful malty playground with little hoppy kids running around pushing each other into the sand.

Very light feel with sharp carbonation but not a lot of body. Taste is very strong; so much so it overpowers most of the flavor balance. In fact, there isn't much taste at all beyond the liquid holding the heavy alcohol.

As far as a strong dark ale goes I think it's low on flavor but high on strong. The aftertaste is bitter without much flavor with detracts from the enjoyment of it.

Not a bad drink, but I wouldn't get a sixer of it. Maybe on of those one time things.

Photo of WickedSluggy
3.7/5  rDev -3.9%
look: 4.5 | smell: 4 | taste: 3.5 | feel: 4 | overall: 3.5

I bought this beer as a single. I have not tried it before tonight. The bottle tells you a somewhat what to expect. It has a high ABV of 16.31% (my bottle is different form ABV indicated here in BA); It has a high OG, 1.135 (though we don't know what the attenuation is -guess I could do the math.) It has tons of sugar constituents and 6 varieties of hops, I couldn't discern any of them; the hops character of this beer must have beed in the background.

A - Attractive garnet red with thin pale sticky head.

S - Malty sweet aroma molasses and prunes. No hops bouquet rose above the aroma.

F - Rich sweet complex flavor rolls in several waves. I open my eyes a bit stunned; then the heat envelopes my head. Oh boy, intense. Is it too sweet? Maybe, but it is already growing on me after three sips and a temperature increase. I still want to know where the 6 varieties of hops went.

M - High FG - feels thick and rich.

D - You won't fill cooler with this one prior to your next fishing trip, but, as I often say, "it fits its intended purpose" (my perception anyways). I'll probably find myself buying it again.

Photo of tmoneyba
4.33/5  rDev +12.5%
look: 4 | smell: 4 | taste: 4.5 | feel: 4 | overall: 4.5

Poured reddish/brown hue with large light brown head that lasted with excellent lacing.

Aroma and flavor very complex of hops, citrus, caramel and alcohol.

Medium to full body with long finish and a bite of alcohol.

Very good brew.

12/30/07 Bottle Batch 2 from Dilly Delli. Much better balanced beer with a strong sweet flavor with a good burn. This is a now a stand out brew.

Photo of paco1029384756
4.38/5  rDev +13.8%
look: 4 | smell: 4.5 | taste: 4.5 | feel: 4.5 | overall: 4

Pours a cloudy ruby brown color with one and a half finger of off white head.

Scent of brown sugar, yeast, honey, spices, hints of chocolate, and some alcohol. The alcohol here is hidden surprisingly well considering the strength.

Taste of brown sugar, yeast, bready malts, dark fruits, cream, and some alcohol. Finishes dry with flavors of bready malts, brown sugar, and alcohol. Definitely the best of "The Demons of Ale" series Avery has to offer.

Mouthfeel is medium heavy bodied and creamy smooth.

Photo of craytonic
2.5/5  rDev -35.1%
look: 2.5 | smell: 2.5 | taste: 2.5 | feel: 2.5 | overall: 2.5

2005 vintage

Appearance: Dark cherry cough-syrup, very little head that quickly fades, no lacing

Smell: A sweet, cheap rum drink - lots of cherries and tropical fruits.

Taste: Sickly-sweet, cheap thick rum drink and cough syrup or cheap port. The alcohol is hot, heavy, and sharp.

Mouthfeel: Sugar-thickness with a very odd soft-drink fizz. Too much like spiked sugar-punch.

The Beast Grand Cru from Avery Brewing Company
87 out of 100 based on 1,164 ratings.