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Grand Cru Winter Reserve - Flying Fish Brewing Company

Not Rated.
Grand Cru Winter ReserveGrand Cru Winter Reserve

Displayed for educational use only; do not reuse.

468 Ratings
no score

(send 'em beer!)
Ratings: 468
Reviews: 219
rAvg: 3.63
pDev: 13.5%
Wants: 5
Gots: 28 | 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:
No notes at this time.

(Beer added by: pezoids on 09-14-2002)
Beer: Ratings & Reviews
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Ratings: 468 | Reviews: 219 | Display Reviews Only:
Photo of DustinSWB
5/5  rDev +37.7%

Photo of SamanthaMarieee9
5/5  rDev +37.7%

Photo of tjd112
4.9/5  rDev +35%
look: 5 | smell: 4.5 | taste: 5 | feel: 5 | overall: 5

Poured into my Chimay glass. Appearance is a translucent amber-gold colour with a fast dissipating white head and little lacing. A smell of honey and booziness comes out strong, but the taste is doughy with a hint of vanilla. Mouthfeel is medium to heavy with a somewhat dry finish. This is a beer that must be sipped to truly enjoy.

Photo of BeerLover48Fan
4.9/5  rDev +35%
look: 5 | smell: 4.5 | taste: 5 | feel: 5 | overall: 5

Buy this every year and it is easily one of my favorite all time beers . Smell is wonderful and the after taste has a hint of cinnamon or nutmeg to it but I'm sure that comes from the hops . Easily one of the best beers from one of the finest breweries on the east coast. Pours nice a tad cloudy but that didnt bother me . Nice lacy head and a great mouthfeel, all in all a great beer I would certainly buy yearly

Photo of mhgatti
4.75/5  rDev +30.9%

Photo of marcpal
4.58/5  rDev +26.2%
look: 4 | smell: 5 | taste: 4.5 | feel: 3.5 | overall: 5

First enjoyed this beer at the tasting at the cherry hill brewery and had on tap last night in New Brunswick. I think this is FF's finest offering to date.

A: Light, pale appearance. Appearance of a yeasty wheat beer. Moderate bright white head.

S: Very Belgian aromas- coriander and spices. Malt presence and hops are clearly evident. Honey and fruit- a great smelling beer.

T: Didnt find it all that sweet based on the aroma but the fruity flavors were spicey and biting. Best word to summarize would be earthy in both the taste and the texture. The malt/hops were well done.

M: Very light carbonation with some stickiness to the mouth coating.

D: Extremely high, the alcohol level is perfect for the flavors and it goes down uncommonly smooth. I am eager to pick up some more of these while the season lends itself.

Photo of bigeyedfish
4.55/5  rDev +25.3%
look: 4 | smell: 4 | taste: 5 | feel: 4 | overall: 4.5

12 oz bottle with no freshness date, but possessing the information 'bottled conditioned belgian style ale' on the bottle poured into a Mad Elf-less Mad Elf tulip.

Dark golden body serves as the base for a near-luminescent white head that vanishes for the most part around the glass, but leaves a little ring along with some bubbles at parts around the outer rim. A couple swirls of the glass produce a renewed head but not much lacing; a splotch here, a splotch there. Nothing earth shattering.

Belgian ethers are the predominant aroma, although there is a sneaky and underlying hint of burnt bread on the nose. I want something else to be present in the nose, I need something else to be present in the nose. There is nothing else present in the nose. Ethers, Belgian Ale yeast, and a slight burnt bread, if the bread were one to two day old baguette heated in the oven.

There is absolutely some underlying sweetness with the tastes of this beer. Some sweet vanilla/orange creamsickle which is absolutely intoxicating. For some unexplained reason there are aromas of grass and mint in the mid palate which is odd, but for some reason interesting and fun. Probably more grass on the front, more mint on the mid with the vanilla/orange creamsickle on the finish, along with alcohol being present throughout. Even some White Zinfindale-like elements present on the tip of the tongue, which is really nice. I've had this beer earlier this year, but this is the first time I really sat down and explored the studio space with it. I'm happy I did. Even some orange juice with extra pulp present between the mid-palate and the finish which is a near-perfect transitory flavor, at least for this beer. Also, some Lipton Iced Tea-esq elements. Let me say this again; I'm glad I finally sat down with this beer. A real pleasant surprise.

The mouthfeel is good; but it's not fantastic. The body is thin somewhat, and at parts it's a pretty big, palate grip. It gets a lot of the back of your mouth, really getting up into the area where the wisdom teeth are/used to be. Really hits that area hard, with a numbing carbonation/mint cooling. The sides of the mouth are for the most part unaffected, and the palate is pretty unaffected; the flavor for the most part handles the tongue area. But it's a pretty fun beer to drink.

A really tasty Belgian-style brewed in New Jersey?! Believe me, typing it is just as weird as reading it. But it's true. A really nice beer that takes a great Belgian interpretation, and then gives it a nice subtle twist. So nice to see an American brewer not go completely Belgian and produce something everybody's had before. This is a no-nonsense, honest, Belgian-inspired, new world Strong Pale Ale. Everything on this beer works, to borrow a phrase from Klemens von Metternich, in concert. Color, primary, secondary and tertiary flavors, mouthfeel, drinkability. All in all, a great effort from an overlooked, local brewery. Gives Hop Wallop and Mad Elf a run for their money.

Photo of REAL_Harrison
4.5/5  rDev +24%

Photo of LarryMyers
4.5/5  rDev +24%

Photo of Vylo
4.5/5  rDev +24%

Photo of jwat
4.5/5  rDev +24%

Photo of CampusCrew
4.5/5  rDev +24%
look: 4.5 | smell: 4.5 | taste: 4.5 | feel: 4.5 | overall: 4.5

appearance: golden and huge

smell: lots of fruit and spice aromas

taste: wow. probably one of their best offerings, great belgian pale with lots of spice

mouthfeel: medium bodied

drinkability: this woul dbe a good thanksgiving beer with light body and tons of fruit and spice

Photo of George2744
4.5/5  rDev +24%

Photo of kja157
4.5/5  rDev +24%

Photo of msarver16
4.5/5  rDev +24%

Photo of Immortale25
4.45/5  rDev +22.6%
look: 4 | smell: 4.5 | taste: 4.5 | feel: 4.25 | overall: 4.5

Poured into a Dogfish signature snifter. No readable freshness date.

A- Pours a medium gold color with a 1/2 inch head that falls to an 1/8 inch thick ring around the edge of the glass with some billowy foam bumps across the surface.

S- Has a potent, almost funky brightness to it obviously brought on by the yeast strain. Sweet, fumy, excellent. Some citrus shines through as well.

T- Full, rich yeast in the start that swirls with semi-bitter hop oils and a sweet, biscuity malt finish. It's not as hop forward as a Belgian IPA, but they're definitely around. The spice, yeast and hop combination creates some tasty esters that dance on the palate.

M- Vibrant and prickly on the tongue, with medium-high carbonation that keeps it interesting to drink and provides a full body.

O- A brilliant Belgian-style ale. But I would expect nothing less from FF.

Photo of tgbljb
4.4/5  rDev +21.2%
look: 4.5 | smell: 4.5 | taste: 4.5 | feel: 4.5 | overall: 4

Poured a slightly hazy golden color with massive white puffy head.
Smell is a nice combination of fruit and spices.
Taste also has a firm sweet maltiness with some nice spiciness mixed in.
Finishes full and creamy in the mouth.
An excellent beer. Good example of the style. Enough alcohol to be noticed, but not so high that you can only enjoy one.

Photo of frank4sail
4.38/5  rDev +20.7%
look: 4 | smell: 4.5 | taste: 4.5 | feel: 4.5 | overall: 4

Pungent citrus (lemon) sweet malt, yeast nose. Yellow slightly hazy look with a sticky white head. Mellow floral hopped taste with soft texture. Very rounded malt base due to the strong hop/yeast notes. Medicinal alcohol finish. This should improve also with age as it it is bottle conditioned. This is the best Flying Fish product I've ever had. Complex and bold yet rounded and soft on the mouth. Layers of mellow and malty flavors followed by srong spice and hops. A treat. 2002-2003 edition.

Photo of ElGuapo
4.33/5  rDev +19.3%
look: 4 | smell: 4 | taste: 4.5 | feel: 4 | overall: 4.5

A hazy yellow golden pour with a big white head that lasts for a long time and leaves lace all over the glass. Sweet fruity and citrus aroma blended with hops.

Flavor starts off with a sweet orange and apricot followed by some grassy hops. Then it dries into lightly toasted white bread with apricot preserves. Mouthfeel is nice and crisp. It is pretty light and extremely drinkable. Refreshing characteristics make it even more enjoyable. I was very happy with this brew.

Photo of TheFightfan1
4.3/5  rDev +18.5%
look: 3.5 | smell: 4.5 | taste: 4.5 | feel: 4 | overall: 4

Poured into a snifter. Poured a slightly hazy gold color with bright yellow highlight's.Decent heading stays around for just a bit. No lacing.

Smell is a touch of toasted malt,a touch of lemon zest, as well as spice and clove.

Taste is very much the same as the nose. Cloves,spice and toasted bread taste, along with a slight candy taste. Very well suited tastes.

Mouth is super smooth in texture aand finely carbonated when you swoosh it around a bit. Medium bodied and finshes with a lingering spiciness.

All and all a surprisingly good beer from flying fish. One of my new favorites from this brewery.

Photo of Halcyondays
4.3/5  rDev +18.5%
look: 3.5 | smell: 3.5 | taste: 4.5 | feel: 5 | overall: 4.5

12 oz. bottle,

A: Pours a translucent to opaque dark goldenrod-orange with a small white head. Nice retention, the remnants last a long time, no real lace.

S: Anise initally, a good amount of pear, estery.

T: Good malt flavour matches with a really interesting pineapple play with yellow apple, pear and white pepper. Nice mix of flavours, well made.

M: Medium-bodied, frothy carbonation, there's just an ease in the body, it's a big beer but never feels like it.

O: This is fantastic American made Belgian style beer. Good complexity and great mouthfeel like the best from Belgium have. I'll be buying this every Christmas as long as it's available.

Photo of TheManiacalOne
4.28/5  rDev +17.9%
look: 4 | smell: 3.5 | taste: 4.5 | feel: 4.5 | overall: 4.5

Acquired via trade from NeroFiddled, so a big “Thank you” goes out to him.
Poured from a 12oz bottle into a US tumbler pint glass.

A: The beer is a murky deep gold color with a thin dense white head that fades slowly and leaves a thick lace on the glass.

S: The aroma is of apples and citrus, light malts, spice, some hops and a touch of Belgian yeast.

T: The taste is fruity, malty and still light. There’s a mild Belgian yeast profile but it doesn’t over-power you like it can in most other beers in the style. There’s a mild and complimentary hops presence, which provides a good balance. The after-taste is slightly sweet.

M: Crisp and very smooth, medium body, medium carbonation, very clean finish.

D: Very tasty, goes down quite easily, not very filling, good kick, good representation of style without overdoing it. This is the beer to drink if you want a Belgian style, but on a much lower level. There’s a lot of talk about gateway beers, well I think this beer is a good gateway to the Belgian styles.

Photo of BlitzShadow
4.25/5  rDev +17.1%

Photo of thagr81us
4.25/5  rDev +17.1%
look: 4 | smell: 4.5 | taste: 4 | feel: 4.5 | overall: 4.5

Served from bottle into a Bell's stemmed tulip. Poured a light yellow-orange with a three finger slightly off-white head that subsided to one finger slowly. Maintained excellent lacing throughout the glass. The aroma was comprised of sweet malt, banana, clove, and coriander. The flavor was of sweet malt, banana, fruit, and very slight alcohol. It had a light feel on the palate with medium-high carbonation. Overall I really like this brew. The aroma coming off of this one was QUITE excellent to say the least for the style. Very good flavor, but it just seemed to lack in complexity for me. With that said, this was still very nice and a really good winter brew from Flying Fish.

Photo of weizenbob
4.25/5  rDev +17.1%
look: 3.5 | smell: 4 | taste: 4.5 | feel: 4.5 | overall: 4

Received as an extra in a trade with cbriggz. Thanks Chris! 12 ounce bottle poured to a pint glass. This bottle claims a 6.9% ABV (in contrast to the 7.2% listed by Beer Advocate). An aggressive pour yields just a trace of head that quickly disappears. Some lacing is present. The brew is a dark golden shade with some translucence. There is a small amount of visible carbonation.

The nose is greeted by the scents of citrus, spice and wheat. The aroma is reminding me of a more pungent Hoegaarden. 'Nuff said.

The first sip is loaded with coriander which is clinging to a syrupy alcohol that is very pleasantly noticeable without appearing boozy. It's a wonderfully refined texture that is velvety smooth and doesn't burn at all. Yes, there is a faint notion of orange peel and a wheaty body, but not nearly what I expected from the aroma. The sum of the parts creates a perfectly sweet backbone and the flavors all compliment each other very well. Primarily though, I will remember this as a wonderful and flavorful balance of spice and alcohol.

The mouthfeel is really nice. There is a small amount of carbonation that keeps the brew crisp, which is an astounding feat given the alcoholic texture that is present. It's full and light at the same time. Great balance!

For 6.9% ABV, this is dangerously drinkable. That's not crazy-high on the alcohol scale, but as tasty as this is, and as easy as it drinks I know that I'm drinking this way too fast while I'm reviewing it. I could see myself putting a couple of these away after a long day and passing out in front of the fire. Awesome. Thanks again Chris!

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Grand Cru Winter Reserve from Flying Fish Brewing Company
83 out of 100 based on 468 ratings.