Althea - Weyerbacher Brewing Co.

Not Rated.
AltheaAlthea

Educational use only; do not reuse.
BA SCORE
82
good

184 Ratings
THE BROS
85
very good

(view ratings)
Ratings: 184
Reviews: 37
rAvg: 3.62
pDev: 11.33%
Wants: 4
Gots: 22 | FT: 1
Brewed by:
Weyerbacher Brewing Co. visit their website
Pennsylvania, United States

Style | ABV
Dubbel |  7.70% ABV

Availability: Rotating

Notes & Commercial Description:
Beer added by: Jason on 08-26-2013

Althea is a Belgian-style Dubbel brewed with plums, bottle conditioned in a 750 ml/25.4 oz. cork and cage bottle, which weighs in at a substantial 7.7% ABV. It’s a beautiful, dark and fruity ale conceived and brewed by our New Jersey Sales Representative and former Philly Beer Geek, Natalie DeChico.
Every year, hundreds of women in Weyerbacher’s home, Pennsylvania’s Lehigh Valley, are diagnosed with breast cancer. For many of these women, this means countless doctor visits, months of treatments and more. All too often this means lost wages and insurmountable bills during what is possibly the most trying time in that woman’s life.

For every bottle of Althea sold, Weyerbacher will donate $1 to The Pink Ribbon Fund to help these women – our mothers, daughters, wives, sisters and their families – cover costs like travel, child care, prostheses and more.

Althea hit the shelves in October 2013 to coincide with Breast Cancer Awareness Month. A limited run with an extremely important purpose, Althea is a unique and delicious way for beer lovers to support women in their fight against breast cancer.
Beer: Ratings & Reviews
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Ratings: 184 | Reviews: 37
Photo of Alissa2579
1.36/5  rDev -62.4%
look: 2 | smell: 1 | taste: 1 | feel: 2 | overall: 2

Picked this up at the liquor outlet in boonton. I was expecting a fruity beer with the pink label and plum infusion. Boy was I disappointed. This is a dark heavy beer. I picked up no fruit notes

Photo of Beerma
3.14/5  rDev -13.3%
look: 3 | smell: 3.25 | taste: 3.25 | feel: 3.25 | overall: 2.75

No did not like it not interested in more!

Photo of Stinkypuss
3.21/5  rDev -11.3%
look: 3.5 | smell: 3.75 | taste: 3 | feel: 3 | overall: 3

Pours a dark amber color, good retention, some sediment. The aroma has dark fruits very much like a Belgian dubbel. The plums used in the brewing process are slightly evident in the nose and taste. Bready malts and Belgian yeast, watery dark fruit. Light and crisp. About par for the course.

Photo of AWSBeerDude
3.29/5  rDev -9.1%
look: 3.75 | smell: 4 | taste: 2.5 | feel: 4 | overall: 3.5

Not terrible, but will not buy again.

Photo of Swright752
3.48/5  rDev -3.9%
look: 4 | smell: 4.75 | taste: 2.75 | feel: 2.5 | overall: 3.75

Interesting beer with the nose of white wine, the body of a light ale, and all the funk of a Belgian beer.

Photo of itsscience
3.52/5  rDev -2.8%
look: 3.5 | smell: 3.25 | taste: 3.5 | feel: 4.25 | overall: 3.5

Poured into a snifter.

Appearance: Dark brown with a fluffy off-white 2 1/2 finger head. Has heavy retention and tightly packed bubbles.

Smell: Yeast, malt, and dark fruit.

Taste: No surprises here, given the smell. Sweet malts, light bitterness from the yeast, and an undertone of dark fruit, although I'm not getting the taste of plum.

Mouthfeel: Medium-bodied with a good amount of carbonation. It's crisp and hides the 7.7% alcohol well.

Overall: Not a bad dubbel at all. So many attempts by American breweries to create a Trappist style ale end up as failures, but this one is a worthy example of the style. At the same time, if I ever find myself in the mood for a dubbel, there are many better options available to me. It just doesn't do enough to distinguish itself and I doubt I will ever get Althea again.

Photo of Suds
3.55/5  rDev -1.9%
look: 3.5 | smell: 4 | taste: 3.75 | feel: 3.75 | overall: 2.5

This beer is a dark, hazy brew with a thick tan head....the aroma is yeasty, with a little malt and fruit. Some bubblegum, and plenty of Phenolic scents. The taste is where the fruit rally comes out. Plum is note don't eh bottle, and I get the flavor, especially as I work through the beer. The beer is semi sweet, with less malt flavor than the smell projected. Lots of complexity, though... hop, spice, yeast, alcohol, fruit. Medium body. An interesting beer.

Photo of metter98
3.58/5  rDev -1.1%
look: 4 | smell: 3.5 | taste: 3.5 | feel: 3.5 | overall: 3.75

A: The beer is clear reddish amber in color and has a moderate amount of visible carbonation. It poured with a finger high beige colored head that slowly died down but never completely faded away.
S: The smell begins to develop as the beer warms up—there are notes of Belgian yeast and plums.
T: Much like the smell, the plum flavors really begin to develop as the beer warms up and overshadow the Belgian yeast.
M: It feels medium-bodied on the palate and has a moderate amount of carbonation.
O: I found this beer to be somewhat enjoyable, but only after it warmed up and the aromas and flavors of plums began to develop. No traces of alcohol are perceptible.

Photo of stakem
3.58/5  rDev -1.1%
look: 3.75 | smell: 3.75 | taste: 3.5 | feel: 3.5 | overall: 3.5

Thanks to BA ClockworkOrange for sharing this 750ml. Poured into a snifter, the brew appears a murky brown with a tan cap. Some orange clarity is seen around the edges. Patchy lace sticks to the glass.

The aroma is sugary with yeasty spiciness and a hint of something almost grassy. Some belgian candy quality blends to bubblegum and banana. A bit of sulfur towards the tail end.

The taste includes that previously mentioned belgian candy sugar sweetness. Somewhat fruity with pear, apple and bubblegum. A bit herbal, grassy and spicy with clove and more fruitiness.

This is a medium bodied brew with a modest level of carbonation. A little too sweet feeling with not enough malt character (if that makes any sense?) It feels too much like candy and lacks depth. The spice and seemingly a melange of fruity esters just isnt enough to combat the sweetness. Worth trying but I would peobably not revist.

Photo of MDDMD
3.67/5  rDev +1.4%
look: 4 | smell: 3.75 | taste: 3.5 | feel: 3.75 | overall: 3.75

A-dark brown with a int of red and a decent light tan head and some lacing

S-dark fruit, plums, brown sugar, malt

T-toasted malt, brown sugar, Alison's, plums, slight wine-like taste, moderate bitterness in the finish

F-medium body with moderate carbonation, dry

O-decent beer, but just misses slightly for me in the flavor dept.

Photo of Chaney
3.68/5  rDev +1.7%
look: 4.25 | smell: 3.75 | taste: 3.5 | feel: 3.75 | overall: 3.75

Haven't had a Weyerbacher brew in a while. Jammin!

Served in a 3 Stars glass.

A: Dark and then some. It looked like a plum.

S: The smell of the brewery hit me right away: CO2, dark fruit, plums, and raisons.

T: The Belgian strain was most evident here. Jeez...Good taste, but infinitely Belgiany. If that isn't your thing, stay away from this.

M: Nice mouth overall, more carbonated than most Belgians, and no lacing was left on the glass.

O: I wouldn't seek this out, but it has its merits.

Photo of BEERMILER12
3.7/5  rDev +2.2%
look: 4 | smell: 4 | taste: 3.5 | feel: 3.5 | overall: 3.75

A: Pours a deep red/mahogany color with 3+ fingers of head that slowly settles down to a fluffy cap that leaves some nice lacing

S: Belgian yeast, dark fruitiness, lots of plum, and some light spices stand out. Quite a bit of maltiness as well that balances the yeastiness nicely

T: Follows the nose. Starts off with the Belgian yeast, dark fruits, and spiciness. Plum definitely stands out. An odd twang comes through from the yeast as well, which is a little distracting. Finishes with a light sweetness and more of the dark fruits and plums

M: Medium bodied with moderate-high carbonation

O: The yeasty twang mid-palate is definitely a little distracting. Aside from that, it's a solid brew that supports a great cause

Photo of Roguer
3.72/5  rDev +2.8%
look: 4.75 | smell: 4 | taste: 3.5 | feel: 3.25 | overall: 3.75

Beautiful Dubbel: dark brown with garnet highlights, fairly clear with lots of carbonation, and topped by a thick, 1 1/2 very firm cream-colored head. Excellent retention.

Spicy, yeasty dubbel aroma. Banana bread, dark bread, a hint of cloves and nutmeg, a bit of alcohol presence. Tons of caramel and toffee, and a bit of black pepper. Prunes and dates. I don't get plum, but it may just blend together with everything else.

Plum does come through on the flavor, providing just a hint of sweetness to an otherwise bready, spicy dubbel. Very traditional abbey-style ale. For flavors, see the nose: spiced bread dominates.

Very lively with moderate sting. Medium-full feel with sticky retention.

Overall, a very nice dubbel that is stylistically not out of place. It's a little watery and spicy for my preference, but it certainly represents well among North American dubbels.

Photo of Ljudsignal
3.73/5  rDev +3%
look: 3.75 | smell: 3.75 | taste: 3.75 | feel: 3.5 | overall: 3.75

750ml cork-and-cage poured into my trusty Night Shift tulip glass.

Pours a hazy reddish-brown with an initial frothy two-finger tan head. Head gradually subsides to a surprisingly robust ring of foam and a light film atop the beer. Minimal lacing, but decent legs on this one.

In the nose, a potent blend of dark fruits--the expected plums, but also raisins, prunes, and cherries--as well as burnt brown sugar, caramel, yeast, clove, and a light medicinal note.

In the mouth, sweet malts and burnt sugars gives way to a brief plummy and fruity note mid-palate, before yeasty banana and coriander esters emerge towards the back of the palate. A subtle earthy hop and yeasty bitterness also appears throughout, as well as a slightly unpleasant clove-y medicinal note that occasionally threatens to overpower the more agreeable flavors.

Medium-bodied, crisp and carbonated. Slightly syrupy towards the back, could stand to be a little more carbonated to balance the saccharine feel. Alcohol is not readily apparent.

On the whole, a respectable dubbel that falls just short of being excellent. A little too syrupy, not quite dry and spicy enough in the finish, and the omnipresent medicinal note is a little jarring. Still a solid take on the style.

Photo of JeffBrenner
3.75/5  rDev +3.6%
look: 3.75 | smell: 3.75 | taste: 3.75 | feel: 3.75 | overall: 3.75

Poured from 22oz. bottle into a tulip glass. Bottle had a good deal of carbonation. Poured with about half an inch of head that stuck around for a bit. Smells good with malts and candy sugars, and a nice yeast note. Pours a dark brown with minimal light penetration. Tastes very sweet, even for a double. Notes of raspberry and bubble gum. Tastes a lot like a weaker quad from them. All in all, not bad, not great, but definitely for a good cause. Personally, it lost some points because I definitely got no plum notes.

Photo of ONUMello
3.75/5  rDev +3.6%
look: 3.75 | smell: 3.75 | taste: 3.75 | feel: 3.75 | overall: 3.75

750ml bottle dated 9/19/14 poured into a goblet
A: Dark brown with a 1.5-finger head
S: Please see BeerMiler12's note right below mine. I couldn't write it better. Belgian yeast/malt/prune to be simple
T: Matches the nose initially with nice malt, Belgian yeast and plum notes, but just after the plum hits it turns to spoiled prunes and has a rather unpleasant finish
M: Medium-bodied but the unpleasant finish takes it down a notch
O: Happy to try this but I prefer the othr beers I've had from Wererbacher

Photo of Darkmagus82
3.77/5  rDev +4.1%
look: 4.25 | smell: 4 | taste: 3.75 | feel: 3 | overall: 3.75

Poured from bottle into a chalice glass

Appearance – The beer pours a mahogany color with hints of a ruby red shining through. Upon pouring there is a fantastic tan colored head of two fingers that is massively thick and creamy looking. The head very slowly fades over time to leave a great level of foamy lace on the sides of the glass.

Smell – The aroma is heaviest of some darker fruits of plum, prune, and raisin complimented by a good strong malty smell which consists of a mix of biscuit, roasted malt and a bit of a doughy smell. Other aromas of banana and yeast as well as some spice of clove and coriander are there as well, creating a nice dubbel like smell overall.

Taste – The taste begins with fruit flavors of plum and cherry upfront with a lighter level of a bready and slightly doughy like flavor. A good level of yeast and spice start right from the start with the spice being a nice mix of coriander and clove. The fruit flavors, while strong at the start, get even stronger as the flavor advances even further. Some raisin joins the profile with the plum flavor gaining a bit of potency and being joined by some lighter grass flavors. Some light alcohol flavors come to the tongue at the end being joined a little bit of a grapy wine like flavor to leave a dark fruity Belgian dubbel flavor to linger on the tongue.

Mouthfeel – The body of the beer is on the average side for a dubbel of a 7.7% abv with a carbonation level that is on the slightly lower side. A little more carbonation may have been slightly better for the fruit and yeast flavors of the brew, but overall the feel was OK.

Overall – A decent dubbel with a decent fruitiness. Rather pleasant drinking and worth a try.

Photo of gestyr
3.77/5  rDev +4.1%
look: 4 | smell: 3.75 | taste: 3.75 | feel: 3.75 | overall: 3.75

Poured from a 750Ml bottle into a schooner

A: Pours a nice brown with a reddish cast when held to the light. Slight chill haze present. Head is thick and long lasting with tight bubbles.

S: Lots of fruit aroma: cherries, dark fruit. Sweet malty smell.

T:Hmmm Interesting. Very wine like. Nice fruit notes with a malty sub-layer followed by a comfortable alcohol warming.

M: Medium body with no sting from the carbonation or alcohol. Smooth

O: Very drinkable and enjoyable. A good example of the style.

Photo of JerzDevl2000
3.79/5  rDev +4.7%
look: 4 | smell: 3.75 | taste: 3.75 | feel: 4 | overall: 3.75

Picked this up a few weeks back down at Joe Canal's in Woodbridge, having never tried this before but intrigued to see if Weyerbacher could brew a decent Dubbel and given that Althea is one of my favorite Grateful Dead songs and that part of the proceeds of this beer went to charity, I figured that this would be worth the price. While this wasn't as fruity, thick, or full as its European counterparts, this was a good take on the style that was easily enjoyable and still had more than enough going for it.

Of course, the appearance of this beer was the best aspect of it, as it had a nice plum shade, a fairly translucent hue, and quite a bit of head as I poured the first half of this bomber out. Lots of yeast and candied sugar in the nose and just as much in the taste but...where's the fruit? The plum is faint and the sweetness was fleeting. This felt too thin and not worth swishing around in my mouth, as evidenced from how dominant the alcohol was. While I like booze in my Belgian and Belgian-style beers, it should serve to enhance a beer and not dominate here. This wasn't the case here and the light, effervescent mouthfeel served to take this beer down a notch, from other examples of this style.

This was strong but not enough to keep from downing this in one session. There was a hint of raspberry tartness that was reflected in the taste and syrupy aspect of this beer but it wasn't enough to help overcome the shortness of this. This would be a great introduction to this style for a neophyte but those accustomed to heavier examples of this style will be disappointed to a small extent. Worth a go once to enjoy a Dubbel that feels more like a Singel.

Photo of UCLABrewN84
3.82/5  rDev +5.5%
look: 3.5 | smell: 4 | taste: 3.75 | feel: 4 | overall: 3.75

Bottle pour at Woodshop 8 held at The Hermosillo in Los Angeles, CA.

Thanks to mthomas84 for sharing this one.

Pours a murky orange-brown with a foamy beige head that settles to a film on top of the beer. Small dots of lace form around the glass on the drink down. Smell is of malt, caramel, and dark fruit aromas. Taste is much the same with dark fruit and spice flavors on the finish. There is a mild amount of yeast bitterness on the palate with each sip. This beer has a good level of carbonation with a crisp mouthfeel. Overall, this is a pretty good beer that is tasty but has a slightly better aroma in my opinion.

Photo of Jonada
3.84/5  rDev +6.1%
look: 4 | smell: 3.75 | taste: 3.75 | feel: 4.5 | overall: 3.75

750ml bottle served in a Rochefort goblet

Appearance: Pours a murky brown color with 1 finger of an off white head. Lots of visible carbonation streaming throughout the glass.

Smell: The added plums are really noticeable along with hints of dark bread, candi sugar and a bit of earth.

Taste: Dark fruit (plum in particular), bread, malt sweetness along with a very slight tartness.

Mouthfeel: Medium bodied with a soft creamy mouthfeel. Medium fine carbonation. Booze hidden well.

Overall: Pretty good American dubbel. With some of the proceeds going to a good cause, this is definitely worth picking up.

Photo of thecheapies
3.84/5  rDev +6.1%
look: 4 | smell: 3.75 | taste: 4 | feel: 3.5 | overall: 3.75

Weyerbacher Althea, poured into a Rochefort goblet.

Pours out a soft brown color with darkness and not much passing light. A good head for a dubbel. Thick, and long-standing. Dense, and nearly tan in color. Attractive.

I get tart tannic fruit skins in the nose; evidence of the plum addition. Has a richer sweetness, also indicative, that includes plum flesh, bing cherry, malty richness, brown ale notes, light phenols, tobacco, and aged hops. Actually, very plummy, indeed.

Phenols in the flavor profile evoke medicinal compounds and a strange fruitiness that includes plums and the tannic qualities of the black varietal. More tobacco, nuances of clove, prune, dark maltiness, some residual candi sugar after-effects, and a bitter tartness. As it warms, I get more of those semi-tart cherry notes with red grape character. But, this beer is pretty dry compared to most Belgian-born dubbels. I am in-tune with that dryness, but some extra sugars could help the other complexities to shine.

Sopping wet with aid from a medium level carbonation. Not a bad drink, if not slightly too showy with booze.

Nothing really special, but I can get down with this, what with all of the Bornems and Ommegang Abbeys. I still approve of this effort.

Photo of brentk56
3.86/5  rDev +6.6%
look: 4.5 | smell: 4 | taste: 3.75 | feel: 3.75 | overall: 3.75

Appearance: Althea has the Belgian look down, with a huge, frothy head perched atop the rosewood colored liquid

Smell: Fruity, with plum, blackberry and bubble gum tones, buttressed by a spicy Belgian yeast profile

Taste: Fruit and spice mix together, on the front end, with the plum, blackberry and bubble gum tones mixing with clove; in the middle, a medicinal, herbal tone builds and is almost acrid, like the bitterness from the skin of the plums or perhaps the pit

Mouthfeel: Medium body but buoyantly carbonated; perhaps a bit too much so

Overall: Were it not for the medicinal tone, I would really have enjoyed this beer and forgiven it for the slight over-carbonation; still, I rather enjoyed it but these issues kept it from being top flight for me

Photo of utopiajane
3.87/5  rDev +6.9%
look: 4 | smell: 3.75 | taste: 4 | feel: 3.75 | overall: 3.75

Poured a beautiful brown with garnet hue. Lovely firm head. Nose is a bit of brown sugar and a soft bread with some malty sweetness. yeast and a bit of pepper. Plum and dark fruit like date. Floral and spices too. There's a sour scent that's just faintly under the nose. Like prunes maybe. Taste is light peppery and fruity. The fruit is sweet but there's a tartness to it. It has a mouth watering quality amidst the dry yeast. It has soft sweet malty bread in ti but it's melt in your mouth light. It's one of the sweeter dubbels I have had. Floral and brown sugar end this one with a light little ticklish bit of bitterness to linger alongside that dry malt and that plum.

Photo of bluejacket74
3.99/5  rDev +10.2%
look: 4.25 | smell: 4 | taste: 4 | feel: 3.75 | overall: 4

750 ml bottle. Served in a goblet, the beer pours a clear ruby red color with about an inch and a half light tan head that sticks around a while. There's also a good amount of lacing. The brew smells like dark fruit (plums, figs), clove, peppery spice, blackberries, caramel and brown sugar. It tastes like sweet and tart dark fruit (plums, figs, raisins, red grapes), blackberries, peppery spice, bready malt/dark bread, cloves, brown sugar and caramel. Mouthfeel/body is medium/full, it's a little bit syrupy and has a good amount of carbonation. I think it's a good brew overall. At $7.99 a bottle (and with $1 from each bottle sold going to a local Breast Cancer charity), I'd buy it again. Definitely worth a try.

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Althea from Weyerbacher Brewing Co.
82 out of 100 based on 184 ratings.