Grand Cru Winter Reserve - Flying Fish Brewing Company

Not Rated.
Grand Cru Winter ReserveGrand Cru Winter Reserve

Educational use only; do not reuse.

502 Ratings
no score

(send 'em beer!)
Ratings: 502
Reviews: 227
rAvg: 3.63
pDev: 13.5%
Wants: 6
Gots: 50 | FT: 0
Brewed by:
Flying Fish Brewing Company visit their website
New Jersey, United States

Style | ABV
Belgian Strong Pale Ale |  7.20% ABV

Availability: Winter

Notes & Commercial Description:
Beer added by: pezoids on 09-14-2002

No notes at this time.
Beer: Ratings & Reviews
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Ratings: 502 | Reviews: 227
Reviews by BeerForMuscle:
Photo of BeerForMuscle
3.85/5  rDev +6.1%
look: 3.5 | smell: 3.5 | taste: 4 | feel: 4 | overall: 4

On-tap at Hop Angel Brauhaus in Fox Chase.

A - Nice golden body, not completely clear. Patchy swirls of carbonation sitting atop the beer.

S - Smells fresh and inviting. This beer smelled of some citrus.

T - Most of the taste is refreshing citrus, some hops, and an underlying Plant like crispness. I can only assimilate this note to the kind of sweet taste a super fresh vegetable would have, much like that of a sweet pea. Some yeast tanginess was also present.

M - The mouthfeel was clean and fresh. The beer had a slippery feel, possible diacetyl additon. It was well carbonated and lighter bodied.

D - Very drinkable. Good beer for any time of the year, ont he lighter side, yet crisp clean flavors to be enjoyed anytime.

Notes - Very pleasant glass of beer. I like Flying Fish and this was a well balanced refreshing brew from them.

More User Reviews:
Photo of oberon
3.77/5  rDev +3.9%
look: 3.5 | smell: 4 | taste: 3.5 | feel: 4 | overall: 4

Poured a deep golden color with decent medium'rocky head,very citruis like aroma with a little alcohol sweetness.Taste was very alcoholic with some dried fruit background along with some yeastiness,good medium body made this pretty easy to drink.I have had better brews of the style but still pretty good.

Photo of Billolick
3.75/5  rDev +3.3%
look: 3.5 | smell: 3.5 | taste: 4 | feel: 4 | overall: 3.5

12 ounce bottle, no freshness dating. Bought a sixer today, I opened 2 bottles and they both started foaming over immediatly. Poured into glasses and after they calmed down, was able to enjoy em. May have not been stored all that well, may have been abit old, may have been on their way to beer heaven. Anyway was left with a very cloudy, yeasty concoction, white puffy head, alot of lacing. Fruity, spicy nose, typical Belgian type phenolics. Spicy, cloves, pepper, citrus. Herbal hoppyness. Decent stuff, would like to try this one in Winter next year, when I can get my hands on a fresher sample.

Photo of tigg924
4/5  rDev +10.2%
look: 4 | smell: 4 | taste: 4 | feel: 4 | overall: 4

Appearance: minimal head, hazy, caution light yellow in color, light carbonation

Smell: orange, lemon, honey, and grass

Taste: Like the smell, but with a bit of sugar--orange, lemon, honey, and grass

Mouthfeel: sweet with an earthy backbone, medium bodied with low carbonation

Drinkability: A very good Belgian beer that hides the alcohol way too well. A nice holiday treat that I wish I could find around here. I would get a six without hesitation.

Photo of Milt2112
1.63/5  rDev -55.1%
look: 2.5 | smell: 2 | taste: 1.25 | feel: 2 | overall: 1.5

Not sure if I got a bad batch of this, but this was a very disappointing offering from Flying Fish. Look of the beer is very clear - very amber - with almost no head. Not a good sign. Smell is off - like it is a bit past it's drink by date (it wasn't). Taste was terrible - definitely not what I expected from a belgian style pale. I seriously would rather drink Miller Lite than this. I bought a sixer of this, and was so disenchanted with it that I drain-poured the last 2 - just to get rid of it so I didn't have to dread the moment when I opened it and had that first dreadful taste.
I love Flying Fish - I'm from South NJ - but do yourself a favor - steer clear of this one. Flying Fish - please - get rid of this, or figure out how to brew a Belgian Strong Pale.
I definitely won't be coming near this one ever again.

Photo of KimFazioRuggiero
4.19/5  rDev +15.4%
look: 3 | smell: 4 | taste: 4.5 | feel: 3.5 | overall: 4.5

So delicious! My favorite beer yet!

Photo of chinchill
3.71/5  rDev +2.2%
look: 3.5 | smell: 3.75 | taste: 3.75 | feel: 3.5 | overall: 3.75

12 oz., undated bottle served in a Belgina snifter. Complete pour but a thin coat of sediment remained on the bottom. The body is a hazy apricot-amber color with a short-lived, off-white head that quickly reduces to some thin film and a thin ring, leaving some small patches of sticky lacing.

S: Very fruity aroma with a strong suggestions of canned mandarin orange and cardamon, moderate yeastiness, and hints of pear, citrus and apple. Moderately spicy and peppery.

T: Lightly tart with a faint bitterness. Biscuits with fruit, with the fruits from the nose repeating here, along with a touch of ripe banana. Moderate amounts of spices and yeast.

M: Near medium bodied with moderate carbonation.

O: An enjoyable ale with definite Belgian characteristics but not quite the quality (or price range) as the best Belgian counterparts.

Photo of Mckinley920
5/5  rDev +37.7%
look: 5 | smell: 5 | taste: 5 | feel: 5 | overall: 5

Great spice and warmth make for a smooth drink

Photo of mdaschaf
3.85/5  rDev +6.1%
look: 3.5 | smell: 3.5 | taste: 4 | feel: 4 | overall: 4

A: Pours a slightly hazy orange with a one inch white head that settles quickly. It left behind a ring of foam and a little bit in the center. There was some spotty lacing and little floaties in this one.

S: Faint hops, with a little bit of grass and grapefruit. Some hints of spice, coming out more as it warms and some bready malt.

T: A good amount of light fruit on the flavor profile, some grapefruit, a little lemon, some orange rind, and apricot. There is a slightly grainy flavor on the back, and there really isn't much of a lingering taste.

M: Medium bodied, very smooth with good carbonation.

O: Didn't wow me, but was very solid. Easy drinking and at 7.2%, could be a little dangerous. Would drink it again.

Photo of dacrza1
4.16/5  rDev +14.6%
look: 3.5 | smell: 4.25 | taste: 4.25 | feel: 4.25 | overall: 4

DATE TASTED: December 13, 2014... GLASSWARE: Chimay goblet... OCCASION: prepping for The Battle of the Five Armies--with An Unexpected Journey... APPEARANCE: cheery, translucent golden body that streams bubbles up its center; whitish head sizzles to a half-finger-thin finish; ... AROMA: a clean clove profile front and center, with apple, pear and melon fragrantly mingling; lemon follows, then sits upon a light bready trail--alluring ... PALATE: dry, front-facing, and medium-bodied; easily drinkable yet warming with every sip; some effervescence invigorates the mouthfeel....TASTE: dry pear and clove, faint vanilla (olive?) and bready biscuit make this a complex yet light offering ... OVERALL: at 7.2% ABV, this ale satisfies with a flavorful sustenance--for the price, more than worth its weight, and one of the finer Flying Fish offers...

Photo of NJpadreFan
2.86/5  rDev -21.2%
look: 4 | smell: 3 | taste: 2.5 | feel: 3 | overall: 3

Flying Fish- Grand Cru Winter Reserve

Appearance- Golden, straw yellow with a super thick head that lasts and lasts.
Smell- Malty and spicey.
Taste- Bitter with some spices and ,I think, pepper?!
Mouthfeel, too bitter and bland.

Overall, I did not enjoy this one.

Photo of thefireman
3.53/5  rDev -2.8%
look: 4 | smell: 3.5 | taste: 3.5 | feel: 3.5 | overall: 3.5

Poured a golden hue with a nice head that lasted, and laced nicely. Smelled of malts and spices. Malty at first, then sort of bland, peppery flavor. Seems to drop off. No bubble action to speak of, but had an ok mouth feel. Maybe not their best effort, but I think I will try again.

Photo of LordHammer
3.98/5  rDev +9.6%
look: 4.5 | smell: 4 | taste: 4 | feel: 3.5 | overall: 4

Enjoyed on draft at The Office Lounge in Toms River, NJ.

A: A bright, golden pint, poured with about 1/4 inch of white head.

S: Malts, a bit of alcohol, and some bright citrus and tropical fruit notes.

T: Seemed like a giant, filtered witbeer to me. Tasted like some wheat malt, a bit of coriander, a moderate amount of alcohol, and some notes of citrus (oranges in vodka) and a tropical fruit note. Any hop character largely indistinguishable.

M: A dry, crisp, finish to this one, which was fairly thin but not unpleasant.

D: While good, I stopped at one with this beer, mostly due to my drive home later.

In all, a solid brew, although maybe better as a early spring offering.

Photo of Sammy
3.8/5  rDev +4.7%
look: 3.5 | smell: 3.5 | taste: 4 | feel: 3.5 | overall: 4

Recent bottle from New Jersey drive through. Pours an opaque peachy colour with tiny retained head. Belgian yeast aroma, with malt and fruitiness. Average mouthfeel, tingling mouthfeel. More complex flavour profile as it warmed. Satisfying and drinkable.

Photo of brewerburgundy
3.04/5  rDev -16.3%
look: 3.25 | smell: 3 | taste: 3 | feel: 3.25 | overall: 3

12oz bottle, mason jar, best by 3/23/14.

Straw gold, dark, like honey. A small but frothy, tight knit white head.

Classic fruity, spicy yeast. Sweet. Goodly amount of clove.

Tastes as it smells. Not as sweet. Absolutely yeast oriented with lots of clove. Good, but ho-hum.

Pretty full, approaching syrupy actually. Small fizzy bubbles.

It's very blah. It's OK or less. Grand Cru conjures up grand thoughts of a sparkling, effervescent Belgian pale ale. This is just not it. Too heavy and too singular.

Photo of NeroFiddled
3.77/5  rDev +3.9%
look: 3.5 | smell: 4 | taste: 3.5 | feel: 4 | overall: 4

Fresh on draft 2002 - only recently released from the brewery by about a week or so. I was told by the brewery rep that they had "bumped it up a little bit this year". Deep golden, slightly hazy, with some tiny particulate. Firm white head that holds quite well and initially leaves sheets of lace. Very nice. The aroma is quite spicy (from the Belgian yeast strain - no additional spices are added) with lots of Saaz hops over a vanilla-tinged maltiness. The body is medium with a very fine carbonation, leaving it quite smooth in the mouth. A wrestling match takes place between the malt and the spice. Although the spiciness is there continually, and sometimes peppery but without any serious weight behind it, the almost-cookie-dough sweet malt does get some good hits in. Much more vibrant than the aged (1 year) bottle that I recently reviewed. But the alcohol is also clearer and the spiciness is a bit bold. Still, fairly well-balanced with both the bitterness and spicy hop flavor supporting the maltiness. My guess is that this is a little more attenuated than last year's, giving more alcohol and a slightly less full maltiness. It finishes nicely dry with a long, lingering, fresh and spicy hop note. Still my favorite beer from Flying Fish although I think I'll pick up a case of bottles to cellar at least until spring! Worth trying.

Photo of Zephenbrewid
4/5  rDev +10.2%
look: 4 | smell: 4 | taste: 4 | feel: 4 | overall: 4

Seving Type: 12 oz bottle poured into 16 oz nonic pint glass

A - Off-white head, mid-low carbonation, transparent dark gold color

S - Typical belgian yeast scents, some phenol and some banana

T - Alcohol content string, spicy nip to this brew, sticks around from taste to aftertase, moderate banana flavor

M - light body, slight sting on the lips on entry with the same happening on the tongue while drinking

Enjoying this, though belgians arent typically my thing, one of my christmas eve drinks

Photo of jimbomill
3.85/5  rDev +6.1%
look: 4 | smell: 4 | taste: 4 | feel: 3.5 | overall: 3.5

This one pours a more typical amber-yellow picture.There is almost no foam. The aroma has some yeast to it.

The taste yields a tad bit of carbonation and a hint of bitter hops at the end. It starts out smooth and then bites you. It has a meatier taste to it as it warms. This is a good beer, or, I should say, a good American effort towards a Belgian style ale. It definitely has some complexity in the tasting.

It doesn't hurt that I can probably drive a golf ball from my back yard and pick it up right close to this local micro brew. I'll have to sample some more of the Flying Fish product line.

Photo of cjgator3
3.12/5  rDev -14%
look: 3 | smell: 3.5 | taste: 3 | feel: 3 | overall: 3

12oz bottle

A- Pours a slightly hazy golden orange color with an off-white head.

S- The aroma is pale malts, fruit (apple and pears), spices and Belgian yeast.

T- The taste has some malt up front with spices, citrus, yeast and some alcohol in the finish.

M- The mouthfeel is light bodied with a good amount of carbonation.

D- Overall, not a bad brew but nothing all that special either. Worth a try if you are a fan of the style, but nothing I would purchase again.

Photo of tempest
3.83/5  rDev +5.5%
look: 4 | smell: 3.5 | taste: 4 | feel: 3.5 | overall: 4

On-tap at the Devil's Alley in Philadelphia.

This reminds me of Allagash's Grand Cru right off the bat with its golden body and light, fruity flavors. The Flying Fish GC has a nice grassy and extra earthy element to it that make it not necessarily the better beer, but certainly more interesting. Worth a try if you like weird Belgians.

Photo of JohnFatAss
3.77/5  rDev +3.9%
look: 4 | smell: 3.75 | taste: 3.75 | feel: 3.75 | overall: 3.75

Grand Cru Winter Reserve came in a brown bottle with a distinctive purple label.

It poured a hazy golden color. Small white head and a little bit of lacing.

Sweet and fruity smell.

The taste is not as sweet or fruity as the smell would lead you to believe.

Water up front. Clove and banana favors come through. A little bit of yeast.
Some hop spice and finishes up dry.

An interesting beer, not your typical winter seasonal.

Photo of beerluvr
4.08/5  rDev +12.4%
look: 4 | smell: 3.5 | taste: 4.5 | feel: 4 | overall: 4

This pours with an unexceptional white head, settling over a semi-hazy light goldish/yellow liquid. Nose has some funky smells to it...a little horse blanket, a little sulphury too perhaps, followed by a sweet/fruity malt aroma. Taste is a great blend of sweet malt, Belgian-type yeast fruitiness and mustiness, a nice amount of fresh hops & warming alcohol. Finishes sweet at first, then drying due to the hoppiness, then a pleasant alcohol sensation...well worth seeking out this season!

Photo of YesFest
3.94/5  rDev +8.5%
look: 3.5 | smell: 4.5 | taste: 4 | feel: 3.5 | overall: 3.5

Pours golden crisp-and-clear (like an American macro lager, but with a bigger head).

The nose is a somewhat fruity bouquet, with a faint hint of walnut. Medium mouth-feel, not quite as heavy as the aroma foreshadowed. Still heavy for Flying Fish, but then again, not too thick for a winter ale; medium mouth-coating.

Similar to their Abby-style dubbel, it's a tad wine-esque, but in a rare way that works for me. You can taste the alcohol up front, in an un-aggressive way. Speaking of which, you'd never guess that this registers 7.2% abv. Probably the smoothest 7+ ale I've ever tried, which earns it additional points on that alone!

Malty, smoky, I'm guessing toasted malts? Pretty clean finish, I could use more souvenir in the front of the mouth after the swallow. Sorry, hop-heads, I don't honestly detect a single hop until the throat. But hey, nobody's perfect!

For food pairing, hork down some shepherd's pie, a Reuben sandwich, or save the beer for the main desert.

Photo of bditty187
3.85/5  rDev +6.1%
look: 3.5 | smell: 3.5 | taste: 4 | feel: 4 | overall: 4

Peachy-golden hue, specks of yeast are fluttering in my goblet producing a slightly hazy appearance. The modest white head settled quickly to a soapy residue. No lace. The nose is malty, kind of sweet, fruity with lightly toasted doughy-crackers and nuts. Nice. The potency is mild. The palate is very pleasant… malty, toasted crackers are upfront with spicy hops, alcohol, fruitiness, nuts, and sugary sweetness towards the end… pleasant. Smooth, slightly creamy mouthfeel, a touch thin… very easy to drink. It is enjoyable to quaff. The alcohol doesn’t fuzzy-up the mind. Grand Cru Winter Reserve is the best Flying Fish beer I’ve tried and the only one I’d seek out to drink again. Try one.

Photo of hdofu
4.12/5  rDev +13.5%
look: 4 | smell: 4.5 | taste: 4 | feel: 4 | overall: 4

This beer is pretty nice. Has a nice gold color with very few white bubbles. Taste is kind of like raisin bread. Smell is like a spicy malt. feels nice and bubbly to sip. Goes down smooth enough to have a couple while watching a long movie. It also is nice with an italian sandwich

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Grand Cru Winter Reserve from Flying Fish Brewing Company
82 out of 100 based on 502 ratings.