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Allagash Four - Allagash Brewing Company

Not Rated.
Allagash FourAllagash Four

Displayed for educational use only; do not reuse.
BA SCORE
91
outstanding

838 Ratings
THE BROS
-
no score

(send 'em beer!)
Ratings: 838
Reviews: 446
rAvg: 4.08
pDev: 10.05%
Wants: 86
Gots: 99 | FT: 5
Brewed by:
Allagash Brewing Company visit their website
Maine, United States

Style | ABV
Quadrupel (Quad) |  10.00% ABV

Availability: Year-round

Notes/Commercial Description:
We brew this beer with four malts, four sugars, four hop varieties and we ferment it four times, using four different yeast strains. The complexity of the brewing process is matched by the complexity of this unique beer. Flavors of raisin, candied fruit and plum express themselves throughout.

(Beer added by: UnionMade on 03-26-2004)
Beer: Ratings & Reviews
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Ratings: 838 | Reviews: 446 | Display Reviews Only:
Photo of shbobdb
3.78/5  rDev -7.4%
look: 3 | smell: 4.5 | taste: 3.5 | feel: 3.5 | overall: 4

As I drink this beer, I am reading China Mieville’s The Scar and what should dance across the page but a perfect description for this beer:
If it’s nearly right,
But isn’t quite,
Better to have none,
Than make do with one.
It’s not that Allagash four is a bad beer, but it isn’t a great beer either. Let’s go through item-wise to see if we can identify where if falls short.
The four malts: Mmmm, 2-row, Munich, and two caramel malts. Seems a good choice. Homever, the malts really fail on two accounts. First, the Munich fails because its glory is in the higher temp mashes. The caramel malts are good, but without a solid body to balance them out, they don’t really *do* anything beyond leave me with a syrupy-sweet taste. As I drink the beer, I realise how much this beer tastes like Korbinian, yet how far it is from that noble goal. Good choice of malts, bad choice of temperature for the balance.
The Sugars: The date sugar really shines, I love it! It was actually one of the first flavours I noticed. Sure, Korbinian does it without adding actual date sugar, but come on, Belgian-style beers aren’t limited by the Rheinheitsgebot, so we needn’t worry too much. I dig the dates. The molasses, however, was an artful choice on their part. I, too, add molasses to all my homebrews. Just a touch mind you, too much is death, but I find that molasses registers in the same area that off-flavours do, so a pinch of the stuff covers up mistakes nicely. A very homebrew quality, not bad, but why did I pay $12 when I could have made 5 gallons of it for 3x that price? The candi sugars: Wow, I don’t hate them when used artfully. I had always blamed my dislike for Dubbles on Candi sugars, but that’s clearly a mistake. Well selected, I dig it. No errors here, the molasses was tricky, but not a mistake.
The alcohol: Man, this guy is insidious. He hides carefully behind many, many layers of flavour. A nice addition, but not a negative, even at room temp. I dig.
The yeast: I was kinda hoping for more of a Brett bite. I purchased this beer expecting to be taken on a wild, yeasty ride and instead of a raging roller-coaster I got spinning tea-cups: fun, but not what I was looking for. No hate, but no ‘luv’ either.
The carbonation: Good stuff! The head starts out thick, then collapses into a nice lacing around the beer that lasts forever. Plus, the carbonation makes up for in mouthfeel what the body lacks. Well done!
The hops: Very subtle. They’re there, particularly the perle, but they don’t do anything to actually combat the overpowering sweetness. Again, that wouldn’t be bad if there were more of a body to speak of.
The verdict: Why not just buy a Korbinian? Cheaper, same basic flavour profile, but better. Not a bad beer by any means, but, it comes so close to true greatness that it invites comparison, but far enough away to lose that particular competition. I remain curious about Quads, but so far would rather grab a dopplebock.

shbobdb, Dec 27, 2005
Photo of bruachan
4.13/5  rDev +1.2%
look: 4 | smell: 3.5 | taste: 4.5 | feel: 4 | overall: 4

this has been sitting in my basement for awhile. not sure where i picked it up. wait...arrowine: arlington, va

first thing i think when it comes out of the bottle is dark dried fruit...raisin. the aroma and flavor are both fairly understated for a quad; neither are what i would consider bold. bold isn't what i was looking for, just what i expected

it has that great nuttiness that i love so much in rochefort. not to the same degree, but it's delicious. that raisin character comes in early, ahead of the aforementioned smooth nutty flavor. slight phenols sift through the aroma, though the alcohol hides well

though obviously strong, it's not a big beer. the finish is sweet, but not thick

i dig this. even at 10% it's easy to drink. for some reason i was expecting mediocrity here, but that expectation proved unreliable 'cause that's a good beer

bruachan, Dec 12, 2005
Photo of doubleipa
4.88/5  rDev +19.6%
look: 4.5 | smell: 4.5 | taste: 5 | feel: 5 | overall: 5

Another outstanding beer from Allagash. Rapidly becoming one of my fav brewers. I've been holding onto a bunch of these for months. I just couldn't bring my self to open open (if I drink one I'll only have 5 left). Finally broke down and drank one for Thanksgiving Eve; had to rationalize it). Anyway, aroma was great. Even though there are four malts in this, I really didn't notice it or the hops. What I really noticed was the cherry and ruby port. Head was creamy, light-brown, excellent lacing, that mostly diminished. Color was dark amber. Heavy sweet initial flavor that lessens. Definitely can taste the malt now. Finish was very long. The body was not as full as some quads. Texture was syrupy and flat with incredibly little if any alcohol finish. One of my favorite quads. It was very smooth without too much cherry, like Three Phils. Very interested to see how this matures. Now only if Allagash would distribute to Georgia.

doubleipa, Nov 25, 2005
Photo of rajendra82
4.13/5  rDev +1.2%
look: 4 | smell: 3.5 | taste: 4.5 | feel: 4 | overall: 4

The uncapping of the metal wire cage, and the pulling of the cork was followed by an resounding pop, that reassured me, that the seal had held well. The beer poured out quite lovely, with a clear reddish amber body, and an unevenly rocky, large, beige head. The aroma was very malty, with a muted spiciness. The mouth watering smell consisted of banana, orange peel, plum, saffron, coriander, and fresh cut hay. The scent was good, but not as prominent as typical for the great examples of the style.

The taste was generously malty, with a buttery mellowness, which I can proudly attribute to the year plus stay in my cellar. There was also a drying presence of faded hops and subtle spices to keep the sweetness in balance. The yeast imparted a bit of sourness as well. The interplay between these elements presented a harmonious complexity.

The body was a little delicate for the style, but the sticky mouthfeel was enough to allow the flavors to shine through. The maturity of the flavors concealed the sugar derived alcohols quite well. Made a perfect nightcap, especially when paired with a wedge of semi-soft Brie cheese. The only slight downside to the whole experience was the fact that the taste did not change very much during the consumption of the entire 750 ml. bomber. Despite that, a very pleasing beer.

rajendra82, Oct 23, 2005
Photo of santoslhalper
4.2/5  rDev +2.9%
look: 4.5 | smell: 3.5 | taste: 4.5 | feel: 4.5 | overall: 4

Appearence: Pours a nice, hazy dark copper with a creamy beige head that stays for most the beer.

Smell: The smell is a mix of candi sugar, fruits, and a strong alcohol presence.

Taste and Mouthfeel: A smooth, well balanced blend of wood, nuts, fruits (berries mostly), alcohol, and sweet malty goodness. I never had it fresh but it seems like age helped this one out. It's mellow and enjoyable. The mouthfeel is full and creamy.

Drinkability and Overall: Yet another quality Allagash product. I feel like this brewery just doesn't miss. It's balance and complexity keep me sippin and enjoying. A very very nice American Quad.

santoslhalper, Oct 10, 2005
Photo of battlekow
3.43/5  rDev -15.9%
look: 4 | smell: 3.5 | taste: 3.5 | feel: 3.5 | overall: 3

4 Malts, 4 Hops, 4 Fermentations...10 Bucks.

Allagash Four pours a thick, opaque caramel color--you could dip apples in this shit. Actually, it smells sort of like apples. Good autumn beer, then. You can smell the 10% alcohol a bit. Tastes very malty upfront, crisply of apples, with some spicy alcohol and hops in the finish. Has an unpleasant, rotten apple aftertaste. I'm a fan of Allagash's other beers, but Four--actually the Quadrupel style in general--is just too malty and sweet for me to really get into. What I especially missed in this beer was the trademark Allagash spices that made their Grand Cru such a treat for me.

battlekow, Sep 28, 2005
Photo of Higravity
4.6/5  rDev +12.7%
look: 4 | smell: 4 | taste: 5 | feel: 4.5 | overall: 4.5

A- Not quite dark enough ruby color, more bronze but a beautiful head that just will not quit.

S- I was expecting more but the smell was weaker, still had candied malt and spicy hops coming through.

T- Well this sealed the deal, this is f-ing great. Deep complex malt bill of various sweet malt flavor tinged with alcohol and the hops a perfect company through the changing malt flavors.

M- A great mouthfeel, full a deep the alcohol makes this one stand up.

Overall this was a terrific beer and a real pleasent sipper and something to be shared or horded depending on company.

Higravity, Sep 26, 2005
Photo of EStreet20
4.18/5  rDev +2.5%
look: 4.5 | smell: 4.5 | taste: 4 | feel: 4.5 | overall: 4

750 ml bottle pured into a Duvel tulip.

A - Deep, deep, deep red, nearly approaching a burgundy color. completely opaque with 1-1/2 finger off white head. Looks gorgeous. Head thins considerably but lasts. A little lacing on opposite side of the glass. If the head was a little thicker it would get a 5 easily.

S - Belgian yeasty smell with many fruits. Namely some tart cherries seem to be jumping out at me and possibly some citrus and/or grapes. Actually smells faintly of a red wine due to the fruit with a little alcohol hint.

T - Nice smooth/sweet taste with the right amount of hops to balance it nicely. That wine/grape taste kicks up for me a bit with a nice little alcohol kick at the end of the drink. The alcohol does not overpower at all but mixes quite beautifully with the fruity/malty flavors. Overall no one taste dominates but it all forms a great tasting beer.

M - Nice and smooth. A very rich beer but not overpowering. The first ad I read about this beer said it was carbonated quite like a champagne. While I can't agree there (not as carbonated as I expected) it does have just the right amount of carbonation to back up the huge flavors.

D - An excellent beer to relax and sip, as I will tonight as I get ready for and watch the season finale of Rescue Me.

EStreet20, Sep 14, 2005
Photo of ommegangpbr
3.88/5  rDev -4.9%
look: 3.5 | smell: 4 | taste: 4 | feel: 4 | overall: 3.5

Not quite a quadrupel, yet not quite a tripel.
A traudel?
A quipel?
I would have to experiment to verify, but it seems to me that this beer is what you would get if you mixed equal parts (high quality) tripel with quadrupel.
The appearance is definately inbetween... not peachy, hazy tripel like... not black ruby quadrupel like... reasonable white head with a deep orange color that's reminiscent of an IPA or double IPA.
Has a sharp smell and taste. Candy sweetness, fermented fruits a la nectarine, apricot and tangerine.
Has the sweet and sourness of those froots.
An interesting interpretation of the style. Reminds me quite a bit of Victory's Grand Cru.
I sure hope Allagash makes this again.

ommegangpbr, Sep 08, 2005
Photo of cokes
4.5/5  rDev +10.3%
look: 4.5 | smell: 4.5 | taste: 4.5 | feel: 4.5 | overall: 4.5

Brooding bloodied peach, obsured with haze and sporting a plump buttery spume.
Fragranced of cherry skin, green raisin, chalkboards, and balsawood.
Fruit hues settle into a deep caramel bath. Pineapple, tangerine, peach, apricot, raisin, black cherry, and flourescent orange peel. Spiciness carries corriander and pepper, with a fume blanc vinic fruitness. This is verily a fruit punch spiked, and touting a gooey caramel base. The conclusion is rocky, slate-like, with a rasp of astringency and a swaying long grass notation.
Big bodied, but floating on a mat of perky and dainty CO2.
Another score for 'Gash. This is very nice.
Thanks for babysitting this for me, Huge.

cokes, Sep 01, 2005
Photo of Viggo
4.28/5  rDev +4.9%
look: 4.5 | smell: 4.5 | taste: 4 | feel: 4.5 | overall: 4.5

Pours a very hazy orange/amber, nice big creamy head, lots of lace. Smell is pear, grassy hops, citrus, hops at the end, apples. Taste is fruity apples, pear, sweet malt. Mouthfeel is very smooth, medium carbonation, full mouth, nice and mellow. Tasty.

Viggo, Aug 15, 2005
Photo of DogFood11
4.03/5  rDev -1.2%
look: 4.5 | smell: 4.5 | taste: 4 | feel: 4 | overall: 3.5

I was salivating when I saw this on the shelf at bevmo!! this was the first time this was available in months..not sure why...

pours a dark copper with a thin but intese head that maintains throughout.

Smells very belgian yeast style beer but has a malty approach that is intriguing.

I sensed some metallic ...god damn it ....i'm so tired of the metallic taste that lingers in beers that come from the east coast or beyond. other than that its almost perfect.

mouthfeel is a bit spritzy for something 4 fermented...note that I only list the negatives because I rank this beer as outstanding just a few flaws in my opinion....

DogFood11, Aug 08, 2005
Photo of AlexJ
4.47/5  rDev +9.6%
look: 4 | smell: 4.5 | taste: 4.5 | feel: 4.5 | overall: 4.5

Murky cinnamon color with a hint of garnet. Big bubbles support a high, fluffy, off-white head that behaves quite well and leaves a few scattered spots of lace.

Aroma is filled with dark, ripe fruits, dark candi sugars, caramel malts, wild flowers, hints of cinnamon and pie spice, apples, grapes, melon, and a slight notion of minerality. nice.

Flavor definately holds up to the nose. Lots of jammy, ripe fruits, grape, apple, spice, yeast, a dry oaky notion, candi sugars, pomegranite, and nice spicey hops in the finish. In spite of the sweet qualities, it finished very dry and with a hint of cedar or sandlewood. Very complex and tastey. Alcohol is expertly integrated.

Body borders between medium and large with a very rich, smooth, and creamy mouthfeel. Excellent drinkability. No problem for me to polish off a whole 750. Although I wouldn't recommend driving afterwards.

Props to mdavis31481 and Warrior soul, you both sent me bottles, I don't know who'se I'm reviewing!

AlexJ, Aug 06, 2005
Photo of goodbyeohio
3.95/5  rDev -3.2%
look: 4 | smell: 4.5 | taste: 4 | feel: 3.5 | overall: 3.5

chosen as this week's sunday night HBO sipper, it served me well for 3 hours (split). 750, no date, fischer glasses.

dark murky reddish cloud with an espresso like head. wine glass pour. reeks of freshly cut red apples, caramel and candi sugars. tastes of sugar and gin berries.. big clove and a tad cinnamony. an herbal vicks-like alcohol cooling in the throat region. evokes a serious warming in the belly preceded by a spicy alcohol aftertaste. unusually light mouthfeel and leaving you with dark fruits on the tongue.. like an apple pie with raisins. super bready crust and soaked in some sort of brandy or schnapps. gin schnapps! a slice of belgian americana.

allagash.. the bigger the beer, the better they taste.

*EDIT* i just realized my review equalled 4. that's some funny sh*t.

goodbyeohio, Aug 01, 2005
Photo of GClarkage
4.03/5  rDev -1.2%
look: 3.5 | smell: 4 | taste: 4 | feel: 4.5 | overall: 4

07/15/05- Purchased at Beverages and More in San Mateo, CA. Review #500.

Presentation- 750ml bottle, caged and corked. Poured into my St. Bernardus chalice.

Appearance- Brandy colored pour, maybe a bit on the copper side. Small head that disapates fairly soon thereafter. Light lacing in the beginning.

Smell- Dark fruity malt with a fuesel alcohol scent backing. Maybe some raisins and plums.

Taste- Plums, raisins, figs and dates come together with a backing of alcohol to form a better than average taste. Fairly sweet, but not as sweet as expected.

Mouthfeel- Lower carbonation and pretty smooth. A tad creamy.

Drinkability- Overall a very nice brew to be shared for an after dinner drink. Not meant to have the whole bomber in one sitting. If there was a bit more sweetness there, it would have tied the whole experience of the beer together. That bit of sweetness missing cost the beer at least a 1/2 a point overall in rating. Still a nice beer, but nothing absolutely incredible like I was hoping for.

GClarkage, Jul 16, 2005
Photo of villainchiwwin
4.13/5  rDev +1.2%
look: 4 | smell: 3.5 | taste: 4.5 | feel: 4 | overall: 4

on tap from GLB, served in snifter
Appearance: glows dark amber with reddish brown; no real head when served. nice looking quadrupel.
Smell: mellow sweet bouquet (dark berries; sugary) clearly apparent that is singularly focused with minor hints of yeast.
Taste: generally soft bourbon with a moderate to light carbonation presence. sweet up front, slight spiciness on back of palate that is faint but appropriate. understated nutty and hoppy notes constitute a pleasant and lingering finish. tastes almost like a bite-less, wonderfully light, sparingly spiced bourbon whiskey would if it were beer... brown/stout-like quality could be garnered once palate adjusts. alcohol noticable though not overly so.
Mouthfeel: carbonation lively but not over the top - well balanced and soothing. medium body but still has soft quality of texture.

villainchiwwin, Jul 01, 2005
Photo of DrJay
4.2/5  rDev +2.9%
look: 4 | smell: 4.5 | taste: 4 | feel: 4 | overall: 4.5

Deep, burnt orange colour, hazy, with a generous off-white head that showed good retention and lacing. Aromas of malt and fruit dominated, mostly pear but with a bit of apple as well. There's also a light alcohol smell that increases as it warms, but the maltiness balances it out nicely. Spiciness melds well with the other aromas and carries into the flavour. The fruitiness is more subdued in the flavour with malt coming more to the forefront. The balance leans toward sweetness, but there is still noticeable bitterness. Alcohol contributes a warming sensation with little flavour. The finish is on the dry side, with some hop bitterness and peppery spice. Lowish carbonation and a moderately full body. Overall, nicely balanced and quite enjoyable. And a little surprising how easy it was to drink, even with the big flavours and high abv. Thanks Viggo.

DrJay, Jun 22, 2005
Photo of BrewMaster
4.38/5  rDev +7.4%
look: 4 | smell: 4 | taste: 4.5 | feel: 4.5 | overall: 4.5

Appearance: Poured from the bottle into a 25 oz crystal sniffer glass. It pours a rich cherry red with a thin tan head. Nice lacing on the glass.

Smell: Very floral and fruity nose. It's malty and sweet with caramel.

Taste: Very sweet and malty all the way through. It's not too sweet or offensively sweet at all, very well balanced. Some light citrus notes include lemon and tangerine with a touch of apple, banana, and pineapple. Despite this description it does not taste like some sort of tropical concoction made for college girls. It's a very light and well balanced fruitiness to compliment the maltiness and caramel sweetness.

Mouthfeel: Medium bodied and very smooth on the palate. It has a slight creamy feel, too.

Drinkability: Wonderful and well balanced all around. This is a well made beer and a nice limited edition. This is yet another beer that the folks at Allagash can be very proud of.

BrewMaster, Jun 07, 2005
Photo of mzwolinski
4.25/5  rDev +4.2%
look: 4 | smell: 4.5 | taste: 4 | feel: 4.5 | overall: 4.5

Mostly clear garnet in color, with a thin, wispy tan head. Rich, malty aroma with a character of nuts and dark fruit. Alcohol emerges as the beer warms. More nutty maltiness in the flavor, with a pleasantly alcoholic taste of cherry in the mid-palate. Finish is tingly and bitter, spicy and warming.

mzwolinski, May 04, 2005
Photo of BeerResearcher
4.35/5  rDev +6.6%
look: 4.5 | smell: 4.5 | taste: 4.5 | feel: 4 | overall: 4

Corked brown bomber. Man, was that thing under pressure! Poured into Piraat tulip-shaped glass.
It pours a deep amber and mahogany color with a firm beige head.
A big whiff of sweet malt rises up. The smell of a freshly opened tin of toffee comes to mind, as does the smell of Kalua.
Abundantly malted with tastes of buttery caramel, fresh banana bread, and hint of maple.
The hops provide the citrusy flavors of sweet pink grapefruit and orange zest, along with a good blend of peppery spices. A faint taste of cloves and coriander sneak in as accompaniments, but just to add complexity not to showcase themselves.
Nice brew!

BeerResearcher, May 02, 2005
Photo of Truh
3.95/5  rDev -3.2%
look: 4 | smell: 4 | taste: 4 | feel: 3.5 | overall: 4

Did a bus stop followed by a spin with this one on 4/29/2004. 750 ml. bomber poured twice in the appropriate Allagash snifter.

Nice, frothy initial head subsides to a nice lace and a fair amount of stick, though thin and bone white. Lots of carbonation present throughout the mahogany/red hue, with a slight haze. Initial rock candy sweetness on nose with a springy clover aspect as well. Warming malt on the tongue, along with some raisiny aspects, maybe golden, and a cooling alcohol aftertaste. Somewhat soapy mouthfeel, but a quality offering all the same.

Truh, Apr 15, 2005
Photo of oberon
4.03/5  rDev -1.2%
look: 4.5 | smell: 4.5 | taste: 4 | feel: 4 | overall: 3.5

Pours a medium brown with some reddish tint with a nice two finger slightly off white head that leaves a generous amount of lace as it settles.Aromas of cherry and brown sugar are dominant and fresh with a light iron character to it as well.Taste is spicey and clovey with some cherry and more brown sugar and maybe a little allspice?Wow a nice rich ale spicey and complex a real joy to down a bomber after work.

oberon, Mar 30, 2005
Photo of GCBrewingCo
4.28/5  rDev +4.9%
look: 4.5 | smell: 4.5 | taste: 4 | feel: 4.5 | overall: 4.5

The beer poured into the chalice clear dark amber with an off-white moussy head which rose tall and lasted well to lace the glass.

The aroma was deeply malty with dark caramel and light fruitiness of pineapples. The aroma had a definite candylike quality and some slight Belgian yeast spiciness.

The flavor was a blend of biscuit and dark caramel with a fruity component that again contained candy and pineapples. The flavor was crisp and well achieved without any harsh alcohols present. Some Belgian yeast spiciness was present.

The finish was dry with a lasting caramel biscuit flavor. The body was medium to medium full and well done. The only real hints of the alcohol content came in the alcohol warming that came after consumption.

750 ml corked and bailed bottle.

GCBrewingCo, Mar 30, 2005
Photo of Bighuge
4.5/5  rDev +10.3%
look: 4.5 | smell: 4.5 | taste: 4.5 | feel: 4.5 | overall: 4.5

Appearance: Shimmering scarlet red hue. Thick crop of whipped white foam on top. Retention is outstanding. Fine beads of carbonation rise quite aggressively.

Aroma: Candy, must, yeast and cookie dough. Grapes and plums. And slight pepper tones.

Taste: Spicy taste to this. Though I don't think a lot of spices were used if any, I can perceive ginger, corriander, black pepper and nutmeg. All blended nicely. The malts are soft and biscuity. The yeastiness is doughy.

Mouthfeel: Light and airy. Medium body.

Drinkability: Alcohol is nowhere to be seen. This is nicely put together and quite drinkable.

Bighuge, Mar 29, 2005
Photo of SheepNutz
4.1/5  rDev +0.5%
look: 4 | smell: 4.5 | taste: 4 | feel: 4 | overall: 4

750mL bottle poured into a tulip-style glass. It pours a murky brownish red color with four fingers of head (coincidence with this beer?). There is a bit of lacing on the glass. The smell is very rich and sweet. Lots of brown sugar and dark fruit aromas present. Nice and complex. The taste is fairly sweet. Super malty with lots of plums and dates. It finishes slightly dry though, with a hint of alcohol. The mouthfeel is decently thick and strong, and the drinkability is surprising for 10%. A decent take at a quad.

SheepNutz, Mar 26, 2005
Allagash Four from Allagash Brewing Company
91 out of 100 based on 838 ratings.