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't Smisje Calva Reserva - Brouwerij Smisje

Not Rated.
't Smisje Calva Reserva't Smisje Calva Reserva

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

135 Ratings
no score

(send 'em beer!)
Ratings: 135
Reviews: 101
rAvg: 3.86
pDev: 15.28%
Wants: 8
Gots: 5 | FT: 1
Brewed by:
Brouwerij Smisje visit their website

Style | ABV
Belgian Strong Dark Ale |  12.00% ABV

Availability: Rotating

Notes/Commercial Description:
No notes at this time.

(Beer added by: Jon on 11-26-2003)
Beer: Ratings & Reviews
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Ratings: 135 | Reviews: 101 | Display Reviews Only:
Photo of bobv
4/5  rDev +3.6%

bobv, Oct 04, 2014
Photo of afsdan
4/5  rDev +3.6%

afsdan, May 28, 2014
Photo of kirkfrailey
1/5  rDev -74.1%

kirkfrailey, May 25, 2014
Photo of MichiganBeers
2/5  rDev -48.2%

MichiganBeers, May 25, 2014
Photo of vermilcj
4/5  rDev +3.6%

vermilcj, May 17, 2014
Photo of davidwhatshisnam
3.75/5  rDev -2.8%

davidwhatshisnam, May 07, 2014
Photo of Kramerbarthomer
4/5  rDev +3.6%

Kramerbarthomer, Feb 09, 2014
Photo of Danny1217
4/5  rDev +3.6%
look: 2.25 | smell: 4 | taste: 4.25 | feel: 3.75 | overall: 4

33 cL bottle poured into a St. Bernardus Challice. Saw this sitting on a store shelf and couldn't pass up the concept of a calvados barrel aged Belgian ale.

This beer pours an extremely murky reddish brown with a small head that fizzles out very quickly. A very ugly looking beer, to be honest.

The smell is a step up from the appearance. Lots of dark fruit. Plums, grapes, figs. Some oak, tart apple, and calvados notes. Some funky, leathery notes. I could swear there is some brett in here, but it could just be everything else going on.
Taste follows similarly. Dark fruits and some caramel like flavors as well. "Barnyard" and leather somewhere in the background as well. A touch of tartness, but not as powerful as in the nose, as it is balanced by the sweet flavors of Candi sugar and caramel malts and some spice.
Feel is a touch thin for a Belgian dark ale, but pretty solid otherwise. Moderate-high carbonation.

A very interesting beer, for sure. Worth checking out if Belgian dark ales and calvados barrels interest you.

Danny1217, Feb 01, 2014
Photo of weeare138
4/5  rDev +3.6%

weeare138, Jan 01, 2014
Photo of logicerror
2.5/5  rDev -35.2%

logicerror, Dec 15, 2013
Photo of Alex5
4/5  rDev +3.6%

Alex5, Dec 10, 2013
Photo of oline73
3.25/5  rDev -15.8%

oline73, Oct 24, 2013
Photo of mendvicdog
3.25/5  rDev -15.8%

mendvicdog, Oct 23, 2013
Photo of duceswild
3.5/5  rDev -9.3%

duceswild, Oct 23, 2013
Photo of acurtis
3/5  rDev -22.3%

acurtis, Aug 17, 2013
4/5  rDev +3.6%

WOLFGANG, Jul 03, 2013
Photo of zonker17
3.75/5  rDev -2.8%

zonker17, May 20, 2013
Photo of RedneckBeerz
3.75/5  rDev -2.8%

RedneckBeerz, Apr 23, 2013
Photo of mdillon86
4/5  rDev +3.6%

mdillon86, Apr 22, 2013
Photo of AltBock
4.05/5  rDev +4.9%
look: 4 | smell: 4.25 | taste: 4 | feel: 4 | overall: 4

11.2oz dateless stubby bottle with a bright red cap. The label is a blurry purple colored piece of wood. The top of the one and only label explains what kind of barrel it was aged in and what kind of spices it was brewed with. Poured into a Cycle Brewing Snifter.

This beer looked like an apple cider to me. It poured a murky caramel brown with some minor reddish orange highlight. The head of foam was a weird color as well. It was a light tan/khaki color. It's hard to explain the true color. As for the size of it, it wasn't that big. It was about 1/4 of inch in height. It had acceptable retention that a sting of foamy rings and some small spots of lace around the glass.

The aroma was apple brandy first and the beer a far second. Up front was the tart green apples, sweet caramel, brandy/alcohol, and a whiff of raspberry and oak. If you can catch it, you'll smell the malt and that's the only beer like aroma that came through. It sort of smelled like an apple cider.

Looked like an apple cider, smelled like an apple cider, but did it taste like one? I'd say so. Like the aroma, it was apple brandy first and the beer a very far second. The apple brandy was a lot stronger in the aroma than the taste. The taste started off with lightly tart green apples, a dash of raspberry, a plum or two, a bite of sweet caramel, a pinch of oak, and a subtle taste of alcohol/brandy. After that, the beer then finishes up with a taste of dry lightly roasted malt.

Despite clocking in at 11% ABV, this beer was medium bodied. This beer's apple cider qualities masked the high ABV. It also added to the beer's low carbonation rate and apple heavy aftertaste. The aftertaste had a bunch of lightly tart apples, caramel, a little raspberry, oak, and a pinch of malt. This aftertaste doesn't linger.

It's certainly unique, I'll give them that. Looked like an apple cider, smelled like an apple cider, tasted like apple cider, but guess what, it's not an apple cider. You'd think this Calvados barrel aged beer would be overpriced, but its not. I think I paid about $6 for this small bottle. Not too overpriced. If you like your hard ciders, I'd say you should buy a bottle. Would I drink it again? One bottle is fine for me.

AltBock, Apr 12, 2013
Photo of sholland119
3.5/5  rDev -9.3%

sholland119, Apr 07, 2013
Photo of themind
4.35/5  rDev +12.7%
look: 4.5 | smell: 4.25 | taste: 4.5 | feel: 4 | overall: 4.25

This brew is very good! it has a slight sour taste to it and an apple brandy finish. The barrel aging is pronounced yet not overwhelming. I really enjoyed this and I am surprised this is not rated higher. This is a quality Belgium brew that I would buy again.

Bottom Line: Good brew!

themind, Mar 25, 2013
Photo of PEIhop
4/5  rDev +3.6%

PEIhop, Mar 15, 2013
Photo of Misanthropy_Sipping
5/5  rDev +29.5%
look: 5 | smell: 5 | taste: 5 | feel: 5 | overall: 5


This... this is a beer that if I would ever see again, I would buy as much as I could.

It cost about $6-$7, but it was amazing.

Poured a very nice deep brown/red, a bit murky... a bit creamy look to it. Very fine, grainy bubbles that stood the test of time and did not go flat through the lengthy enjoyment of the beer. Just held on excellent.

Smelled wonderful, had that calvados scent, bright apple and raspberry sort of tart smell, intermingled with wood and earth tones. Hints of pepper and vanilla.

The taste is great. I held on to a bottle for quite a while and it matured well. The calvados comes through in the front, it is sweet. A bit thick but not sticky. There is a soury tartness that cleans the palate. You really get a great pinch and peppery bite from the grains of paradise and the booze. There are cherries and apple, berries, brandy, oaky vanilla flowing through this beautiful brew. There is a slight dryness with the low tone sour and pepper bite.

Mouthfeel is great, as said it is sweet but not sticky. Which I love for the medium to slightly chewy body. The carbonation is fine and gritty. Adds kind of a crunchiness to it.

I can't believe this beer is not rated higher. It is definitely a dessert/cold autumn/winter to spring transition night beer. But I love this beer. One of my favorite Belgian Brewers, and by far my favorite of this brewer's beers that I have had.

Misanthropy_Sipping, Mar 11, 2013
Photo of MDDMD
3.84/5  rDev -0.5%
look: 4 | smell: 3.75 | taste: 3.75 | feel: 4 | overall: 4

A-dark brown red color with a light tan head and minimal lacing

S-dark fruit, apple, caramel, brandy, hint of spice

T-caramel malt, dark fruit, apples, brandy, cinnamon, slightly boozy, flavor fades quickly with no significant aftertaste

F-medium body with moderate carbonation, smooth

O-a nice strong ale, but flavor seems to fade out. Would have merited a higher score if not for that.

MDDMD, Mar 08, 2013
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't Smisje Calva Reserva from Brouwerij Smisje
87 out of 100 based on 135 ratings.