't Smisje Grande Reserva - Brouwerij Smisje
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Ratings: 80 | Reviews: 51 | Display Reviews Only:
4.64/5 rDev +26.1%
A: Poured from a bottle into a tulip after letting it warm to 54 degrees. A small, off-white head faded to nothing fairly quickly. The beer itself is a hazy brown.
S: My immediate impression is an explosion of tart cherries; almost lambic in nature. Over a bit of time, I get almost a fruit salad of sensations. The barrel aging is barely detectable and you sort of have to know it's there to pick it up.
T: All kinds of things going on. Dark fruits and sweet malt dominate. The 11 % a.b.v isn't even noticeable. As on the nose, the whiskey barrel is there but you really have to look for it. Marvelous change of pace from too many barrel aged beers that let the barrel dominate. Any hops in this beer are bit players.
M: Creamy, creamy, creamy. This beer just melts in your mouth like chocolate. The finish is mostly sweet but not too much to let it hang around forever.
O: Terrific beer. As with all really good beers, it changes character with each sip and as it warms. It is sweet enough to be one hell of a beer with dessert or, better yet, served as dessert. The Belgians are masters of hiding the alcohol. Fortunately, I don't have to drive after this brew.
07-24-2013 01:56:02 | More by HerdNo1
4.43/5 rDev +20.4%
Poured from a stubby 11.2 ounce bottle
It looks the style. There's nothing really that separates it from other strong dark ales, but it's still an attractive beer. Medium to dark ruby brown. Particulates. Soft white head, a finger thick with moderate retention that never fully dissipates.
Dark, fruity nose. Figs or raisins. Maybe some red apple. Belgian sugar. Red grape. Hops are an afterthought.
Taste is same as the nose with the raisins, apples and grapes. Red delicious apple, not the tart kind. Candied sugar. Spices. Really nice.
Very sweet, but not too sweet. Fruity, acidic, but combined with the sweet for a nice balance. Some heat from the alcohol in the finish. Slight burn on the lips. Tangy and earthy. Acid in the swallow.
Overall, this is a hell of a beer. It's got strong characteristics, but they never cross the line. Easy to drink for such a strong beer, classic Belgian. Wish I had more.
05-25-2013 04:05:52 | More by RickS95
4.28/5 rDev +16.3%
A - Cloudy brown with a finger of frothy off-white head. Fades fairly slowly.
S - Dark caramel malts, dark fruits, Bourbon, oak, vanilla, Belgian yeast, banana, clove, pepper, coriander, grains of paradise, other spices, candi sugar, cocoa, and some booze.
T - Dark caramel malts, raisins and other dark fruits, oak, vanilla, whiskey, Belgian yeast, clove, banana, pepper, coriander, grains of paradise, other spices, candi sugars, cocoa, and some booze.
M - Full bodied with moderate carbonation. Smooth with a sweet, warming, and estery finish.
D - Great barrel aged BSDA. Great overall balance.
04-08-2013 05:47:07 | More by ngeunit1
District of Columbia
4.03/5 rDev +9.5%
Nice barrel aged brew, with prominent whisky sweetness over a faint spicy touch.
Presentation: 33 cl brown capped bottle. Poor blue label with white typography. Offers a small description of the brew. Notes 11% Alc. by Vol. Served in a snifter.
A - Hazy amber/brown pour, nice frothy head, good retention and surface memory with some rich lacing. Quite the looker for a barrel-aged brew of this weight.
S - Whisky sweetness, malty caramel, barrel notes with a hint of smoke...
T - Tastes brings the whisky up in a prominent way but coated in heavy sweetness. This could be undermining of the whisky character but is actually working well if one likes that sweet flow. Touches of wood, slight smoke hint, and an emerging lingering touch of spice in the finish.
M - Medium-full body with medium carbonation rather smooth with a creamy hint broken by the firm bubble and coated in a nice booze sense.
O - Nice sipper, worth the try if one fancies the whisky/sweet range.
Notes: Solid all around barrel aged Belgian ale, not one for the ages but I'd be happy to revisit it and have a few lying around.
01-26-2013 18:12:53 | More by Daniellobo
3.95/5 rDev +7.3%
A: Pours a translucent mahogany with a fair amount of tan head. A thick ring retains around the edge of the glass, leaving solid streaks of lacing.
S: Cherries and rum-filled fruitcake.
T: Deep but slightly muted sweetness, leading into cherries with the rum and spice from the aroma coming in mid-palate. Finishes dry with a touch of fruit and hops.
M: The body is on the light side of medium; unusual given the ABV. Medium carbonation.
Overall, nice, but not outstanding. I'd certainly have it again if offered, but I'm not likely to seek it out.
09-01-2012 01:27:57 | More by seand
3.98/5 rDev +8.2%
I saw that this one had some bad reviews. I liked it!!! Poured from a standard 11.2 oz bottle (not the stubby one pictured on this site) into my Chimay goblet. Poured a hazy muddy brown color, more like hazy apricot when held to a light. Head is minimal, shrinks to a covering of the top of the glass. No lacing to speak of.
Smell is spices, black pepper and coriander; belgian yeast and fruit (apples and pears). Aroma is fairly strong.
Tastes good as well, the yeast presence is strong...seems almost like cheese, a flavor I get from a lot of good Tripels. There is candi sugar and sweet fruit presence here as well. The coriander and pepper are prominent. No bitterness or much of an alcohol presence. Didn't get much of the whiskey barrel either.
Mouthfeel is rich and smooth. There is a little alcohol presence but not too heavy.
In all, a good slow, sipping Belgian beer.
05-10-2012 01:53:14 | More by JayQue
't Smisje Grande Reserva from Brouwerij Smisje
83 out of 100 based on 80 ratings.