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Allagash Four - Allagash Brewing Company

Not Rated.
Allagash FourAllagash Four

Displayed for educational use only; do not reuse.
BA SCORE
92
outstanding

857 Ratings
THE BROS
-
no score

(send 'em beer!)
Ratings: 857
Reviews: 445
rAvg: 4.08
pDev: 10.05%
Wants: 89
Gots: 101 | 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: 857 | Reviews: 445 | Display Reviews Only:
Photo of francisweizen
4.08/5  rDev 0%
look: 4.5 | smell: 4 | taste: 4 | feel: 4.5 | overall: 4

This is an excellent stab at the Belgian quadruple style. This brew was a dark, hazy orange/red colour that was golden crimson when held up to the light. The aromas were very fruity and a bit alcoholic. I smelled dark/dried fruits, alcohol, various spices (with the coriander and orange peel in the forefront) and more! The taste had a rum-like quality to it, with the spices and sweet fruit flavors blending together perfectly. The only negative thing about this brew, is that it is SO spicy, and SO fruity, it is almost like a fruit and spice overload! Perhaps if this is aged for a year or two it will become more blended, and less intense! The mouthfeel was medium-thick and the drinkability was very good for a 10% abv beer! A good one from Allagash..

francisweizen, Aug 04, 2004
Photo of frank4sail
4.28/5  rDev +4.9%
look: 4 | smell: 4 | taste: 4.5 | feel: 4.5 | overall: 4

Sweet slightly cooked caramel nose. Burnt orange murky hazy look in the goblet. Fluffy thick darker beige lasting 1/2 inch head. Rich malty initially candi sugar sweetness. The brew then spices with warm hints of nutmeg, allspice, cinnamon and pine. A very thick rich full mouth with lively bubbles on the tongue. Quite rich and smooth. Very drinkable for the ABV... Solid brew.

frank4sail, Jul 31, 2004
Photo of JohnnyDuvel
4.4/5  rDev +7.8%
look: 4.5 | smell: 4 | taste: 4.5 | feel: 4.5 | overall: 4.5

Another great beer from a great brewery. The distinctive Allagash flavor remains, but this one is full and spicy, as you would expect for a quadruple. Sweet, but in a good way. My wife shared it with me and enjoyed it very much also. If you're into Belgians, definitely seek this one out.

JohnnyDuvel, Jul 24, 2004
Photo of marburg
4.03/5  rDev -1.2%
look: 4.5 | smell: 4 | taste: 4 | feel: 4 | overall: 4

Thick, gooey looking pour reveals a tightly carbonated Sugar Daddy-colored caramel body and a frothy cream head. Surprisingly dry aroma -- some spices (tiny bits of cinnamon, nutmeg) but mostly just the impression of some sort of unsweetened candy. Lingering, calm, mellow combinations of caramel and cinnamon flavors lay on the tongue. Tiniest hints of oak. Simple, mellow finish with just the tiniest hint of alcohol-derived bitterness.

marburg, Jul 21, 2004
Photo of cbl2
3.68/5  rDev -9.8%
look: 4 | smell: 3.5 | taste: 3.5 | feel: 4 | overall: 4

Appearance:

Pours from the 750 mL bottle embossed with gold lettering with an intense amount of carbonation that leads to a healthy 2 inch head of foam atop a hazy brown liquid of orange hue.

Smell:

Sweet belgian candied malts strike the nose, along with a whiff of alcohol. This was brewed with 4 hops (and 4 malts), but none of them make their presence known in the aroma.

Taste/Mouthfeel:

Huge warming alcohol presence in this one. The first sensation to hit you is a grape-like quality, followed immediately by the alcohol. There are flavors of sweetness throughout, but predominate presence is that of the alcohol.

Has a bit of a chewy quality to it as well, due to slight viscosity which is rather pleasing. I searched high and low for this beer, finally tracking it down at the Finger Lakes Beverage Center in Ithaca. Not sure if it's worth $9.49

cbl2, Jul 20, 2004
Photo of putnam
4.1/5  rDev +0.5%
look: 4 | smell: 4.5 | taste: 4 | feel: 4 | overall: 4

Perhaps this beer is a little overworked. It has an impresive, dry-yet-caramel flavored aroma and texture. But I was left seeking liveliness. No yeast-endowed sourness, ardent spices or zigzagging texture. Nevertheless, supple, creamy, caramel-creme and nutella textures introduce blonde flavors of nut, brie, vanilla and husk.
As a liqueur this is very nice. As a beer, I think there is a deadened quality that keeps it from acheiving the heights I have come to expect from this brewery.

putnam, Jul 17, 2004
Photo of lackenhauser
4.58/5  rDev +12.3%
look: 4 | smell: 4.5 | taste: 4.5 | feel: 4.5 | overall: 5

Pored a nice chestnut brown color with loads of head.Had to let it settle to get more in the glass-huge carbonation level-head lingered the whole way down.Enormous aroma of malt-very bready and yeasty as well.Nicely spiced.Malt and spices dominate-theres a great sweetness going on.Spices-notes of orange,coriander and licorice.Huge full bodied mouthfeel-10% abv-WHERE?Very smooth with the same residual sweetness.A very,very drinkable beer.Improved greatly as it warmed.This really needs to lay a while to improve even more.A great Belgian style beer from the US.

lackenhauser, Jul 10, 2004
Photo of ecoboy
4.28/5  rDev +4.9%
look: 4 | smell: 3.5 | taste: 4.5 | feel: 4.5 | overall: 4.5

I was tempted to give this a flat four across the board, but then releazed that wouldn't be all THAT funny.

At the top of my notes, I wrote "Well, it's not what I expected." I might say that I enjoy the Allagash Triple and Double reserves more. Maybe I just have a better handle on those styles.

The expected Belgian characteristic in the malt/hop balance... that Rob Tod tiny bubble effervescence that gives every taste a celebratory feell... that champagne nature that keeps one from taking a big swallow. And yet, one big mouthful would be the way to get the fukllest impression. Small sips cannot contain all the notes. That said, i should have waited, methinks. The sample needed aging; I didn't get the Allagash spices I was expecting. And the experience was truly subtle for a 10% alcohol creation with such a backstory.

Curious: I rated it high numerically by mentally comparing it to the style, and yet I wouldn't return to it again and again. I would like to try a year old and two year old bottle down the line though...

ecoboy, Jul 08, 2004
Photo of RoyalT
4.47/5  rDev +9.6%
look: 4 | smell: 4.5 | taste: 4.5 | feel: 4.5 | overall: 4.5

Appearance – This one poured a dirty brown in color with an off-white, almost tan head that came up easily.

Smell –This is probably one of the spiciest beers I’ve ever had. The clove just jumps in your face along with the white pepper, oregano, allspice, and a horde of others that I’ve probably failed to identify.

The base is a nice mix of yeast and darkish malts. Though I can’t pick up much of a hop aroma, this is one of the most complex noses that I’ve ever smelled.

Taste – No, I can’t name all of the four malts and can’t find one of the four hops. This is classic bready yeast, buttered toast, giant sugars, rich toffee, a touch of dark chocolate, and handfuls of spicy cloves all rolled into one beer. Amazing.

Mouthfeel – This is one of the few American breweries to nail down the fluffy Belgian mouthfeel. I remember their Grand Cru hitting the mark in this category as well. It is teasingly fluffy with a juicy, mouth-watering sugariness that keeps your tongue and cheeks busy. The big clumps of pepper and clove make this one chalky and even a bit dry at the finish.

Drinkability – I enjoy bold, forward-looking efforts by American breweries. Belgians are big ticket items, and if an American brewery can nail down the style (like Unibroue does in Canada) there’s a lot of money to be made. This one certainly hits the mark and is well on its way to becoming a great beer from a great brewery.

Comments – Thanks to my good friend skyhand for providing me with this rare and exotic beer from Maine that I humbly submit as my 900th review on the site.

Update – Well, a little over a year and 482 reviews later I am fortunate enough to have another. It hasn’t changed a bit.

I was able to pick up more hops this time around (maybe it’s fresher) but this is still a malt-oriented beer as the style requires. It is very spicy indeed and really demands your full attention. What a great effort from Allagash!

RoyalT, Jul 05, 2004
Photo of TheLongBeachBum
3.93/5  rDev -3.7%
look: 4.5 | smell: 3.5 | taste: 4 | feel: 4 | overall: 4

Presentation: A Regal brown glass 750ml Belgian style bottle. Has a thumbed cork retained with a gold colored wired cap & cage, which together with its gold foil lettering & graphics, lend a distinctly Unibroue feel about its presentation. The front of the bottles simply has the word ‘ALLAGASH’ lettered on its side with the word ‘FOUR’ above it and to the left of a vertical gold line. To the right the word ‘ALE’, with the words “4 Malts, 4 Hops Fermented 4 Times” below it. Listed as 10.0% Alc.Vol. I think I’ll be keeping the empty bottle for my collection.

Appearance: Turbid looking body, a richly hued mahogany color with some chestnut splurges. Served in a tall Ourdaller Glass from Luxembourg, it allows the body of the beer to really show off its streamers to full effect in the full height of the 7” glass. Set against the background of the varied colors in the beers body. Thick beige head with creamy undertones and collared overtones, it looks great, but then.

Nose: Lots of pungent carpet yeasts amid the (four) caramel like Malts. The hops are barely detectable. Dark fruity aroma that has mixed well with the higher alcohols, but you feel that it will mix better with time. It has a light cherry brandy feel as it warms.

Taste: Quite complex; malts, alcohol, black bread and raisins. Has a spicy feel in the middle, sublime yet restrained. Extremely dry ending and a very astringent lingering bitter orange finish. I feel that this has more to offer in time.

Mouthfeel: Wholemeal grain feel with a thick rich warming alcohol background.

Drinkability: A mighty 750ml that was rather easily partaken. It may be 10%, and it sure feels like it at times, but the complex inviting character ensures that you keep topping up the Glass with more Four. Be careful with this one!

Overall: It’s certainly drinkable at the moment, but a tad raw perhaps. Maybe 6 months detention at the back of the class will give this a more homogenous presentation. If you can get two bottles, my suggestion would be to stick one away until at least Xmas, if not this time next year.

I have to raise my dark blue lion encrusted English Cricket Cloth Cap and doff it in the general direction of that finest of Boston BA’s. A present for Taxi privileges to both Stone and Alesmith whilst she was in town, it was certainly my pleasure. A Huge Thanks to Carmen for this one!!

TheLongBeachBum, Jul 05, 2004
Photo of CRJMellor
3.9/5  rDev -4.4%
look: 4 | smell: 3.5 | taste: 4 | feel: 4 | overall: 4

Pours a caramel and orange-tinted color. Thich beige head that kicked off thin shets of lace.
Aroma was faily mild for a Quad with some spiced yeast, corinader and sweet cherry note in the background.
Flavor was some deeper, very sweet malts cut by some grainy, yeasty and lightly spiced notes and slight alcoholic hints as well.
Mouthfeel was oilier than other Quads and not quite as full. This was a catch-22, made it eas to drink just not what I was expecting in the beer.
Drinkability was good. I'd like to get another bottle to age for 12-18 months and see what this could produce. Relatively high ABV was absolutely hidden and overall flavor was good just a bit thinner than expected
.

CRJMellor, Jun 27, 2004
Photo of xgrigorix
3.33/5  rDev -18.4%
look: 4.5 | smell: 3.5 | taste: 3 | feel: 3.5 | overall: 3.5

Brown bottle, 750 ml size, corked & caged, no dates.

Lovely shade of ruddy brown. Clear with intense looking carbonation. Huge, pillowy beige head retains extraordinarily well.

Spicy Belgianesque aromas wrapped up in fruit.

The taste mirrors the nose. Rather 2 dimensional. Hopefully this will mature into something impressive, because right now its just average. Medium/full bodied with robust, but soft carbonation.

xgrigorix, Jun 22, 2004
Photo of Gavage
4.33/5  rDev +6.1%
look: 5 | smell: 4 | taste: 4.5 | feel: 4.5 | overall: 4

Pours a beautiful bronze color with some reddish hues. A lovely 2" head finishs the perfect look. Some mild lacing developed. The aroma was of sweet malt, caramel, and some hidden bitterness. The flavor was impressive as the malt was syrupy on the tongue, and caramel, raisins, alcohol, and a mild bitterness matched the sweetness well.

The mouthfeel was thick, but a mild crispness was noticed at the start as the carbonation levels were higher. The finish was slightly dry with malt sweetness lingering on the tongue for a while. Nicely drinkable as the alcohol levels were not overt.

Gavage, Jun 15, 2004
Photo of Gueuzedude
4.33/5  rDev +6.1%
look: 4 | smell: 4.5 | taste: 4.5 | feel: 4 | overall: 4

Pours a lightly hazy red-orange color, and is topped by a tan head. There is a spicy, yeasty, and bready aroma that is complimented by notes of caramel and toasted biscuits. Upon first taste, I think that this is a nice full flavored beer. It is sweet up front with an off dry finish. It tastes of cinnamon and has a bit of astringency in the finish. Up front this tastes of caramel, fresh bread, a bit of orange, and honey. This is so smooth, and oh so drinkable (it is a dangerous combination). I definitely like this, though it could perhaps use a bit more of the bottle-advertised hops.

Gueuzedude, Jun 12, 2004
Photo of jdhilt
3.93/5  rDev -3.7%
look: 4.5 | smell: 3.5 | taste: 4 | feel: 4 | overall: 4

Pours with a two-finger head that fades slowly leaving thick lace. Slightly cloudy amber color. Very good carbonation - pour slowly. Nose has a hint of musty flowers and some raisin. Sweet, heavy bodied and just hints of the high ABV, should be savored. $10.25 for a 750ml bottle from Colonial Spirits Acton, Ma.

jdhilt, Jun 06, 2004
Photo of merlin48
4.65/5  rDev +14%
look: 5 | smell: 4.5 | taste: 5 | feel: 3.5 | overall: 4.5

The elegant bottle reveals little information other than it has 4 malts, 4 hops, and 4 fermentations. Released on 04-04-04, according to lore. Corked and caged when I brought it up from the cellar. After removing the cage, a nimble twist of the fingers produced a "Pop", as the cork easily flew away, and a brief haze of "smoke" arose from the bottle. Poured slightly chilled into my St Bernardus goblet, we have a fascinating, ruby body with a nice looking, beige head. The magnificent body is complimented by wondrous sheets of lace, all over the goblet. This ale has a superior appearance.

Aroma is incredibly complex. Overripe bananas, cotton candy, raisins, cloves, allspice, and a hint of orange peel.

Mouthfeel is above average. Dry, spicy, medium bodied, with ample carbonation.

The taste is exceptional. Allspice opens the door for an experience that should be legal only in the afterworld. Honeydew and cantelope melon, cotton candy, doughy malt, alcohol warming, ginger, clove, mandarin orange, and a freshly washed wool sweater, converge on the senses. The flavors are at their best at room temperature. Finish is slightly dry, with an orange rind aftertate.

Allagash has made a believer out of me. This Quadrupel matches most of the top Belgians I've had, and exceeds many others. I plan a pilgrimage to Maine, next month to tour this brewery, and attempt to learn how they can craft such a fine Belgian style Quad. Exceptional!

merlin48, Jun 02, 2004
Photo of Stubbie1
4.25/5  rDev +4.2%
look: 4 | smell: 4.5 | taste: 4 | feel: 4.5 | overall: 4.5

This Quad is a hazy brown in color. A large and potential out of control tan head is on the top of this brew. The aroma at first is of bubble gum then tends to turn to more of a wine sent. There is a slight hint of alcohol mixed in but the dark fruit tones make it just noticeable. The taste at first is sweet. Hints of caramel and toffee come to mind. Malt and tones of dark fruit take over to the finish. A very nice and relaxing beer to drink, smooth and creamy in the mouth and goes down even smoother. The 10.0% is well hidden.
There is only one thing better than a quad………dual quads! Enjoy!

Stubbie1, May 30, 2004
Photo of Gusler
4.4/5  rDev +7.8%
look: 3.5 | smell: 4.5 | taste: 4.5 | feel: 4 | overall: 4.5

The beer disembogues from the corked 750ml brown bottle a nebulous mahogany color, the head is spumescent and behemothic in size, the color a winsome tan, as it ever so slowly fades, the lace forms a glutinous sheet to obscure the glass. The nose has a nice aroma of yeast, backed by some fusel alcohol, hints of fruit, over ripe plums comes to mind, with the start sweet and nicely malted, the top is moderate in its feel to the palate. Finish has is stern in its acidity, somewhat tart, the hops delectable in their spicy bite, and the aftertaste maintains the dry tartness to the very end, a nice bit of warming in the tummy also noticed from the 10 percent ABV.

Gusler, May 22, 2004
Photo of HappyHourHero
3.53/5  rDev -13.5%
look: 4 | smell: 3.5 | taste: 3.5 | feel: 3.5 | overall: 3.5

Glowing, ruby hued, mahogany colored beer. Small oatmeal colored head fades rather quickly to a film leaving a scattered coat of lace. Mellow fruit, alcohol, and doughy aroma. Mild fruit esters and a bit of malt end in a slightly bitter finish and a warm stomach. Light, almost fizzy feeling beer. The carbonatioon keeps the subdued flavors from saturating the tongue. IMHO it could use a little more aroma and flavor, served cool so that wasn't the problem, maybe it just needs time.

HappyHourHero, May 18, 2004
Photo of 86MonteSS
4.4/5  rDev +7.8%
look: 4.5 | smell: 4 | taste: 4.5 | feel: 4.5 | overall: 4.5

"Four" definitely tastes like a Belgian quadrupel, but it doens't have the quite same impact as its foreign brethren. A medium sized off-white head caps off an orange-ruby body. Floral and heavily-sugared coffee elements in the nose. Starts out with a sweet, slightly watery malt presence, but as it warms the alcohol comes through and the malt base thickens. Very appropriate carbonation. A bold offering from one of New England's greatest breweries.


But nine bucks could also buy you a St. Bernardus....

86MonteSS, May 16, 2004
Photo of avylover
4.3/5  rDev +5.4%
look: 4.5 | smell: 3.5 | taste: 4.5 | feel: 4.5 | overall: 4.5

This is a nice looking beer. It's a very hazy brownisah orange with a stiff bubbly head that seems to sit still. This brew looks like a meal. Aroma is full of a bready maltiness, peppery spices and fruity esters. Not an overwhelming strong scent, but good. Rich, full taste here. Toffee, grapes, butterscotch and a hefty dose of malt make this one tasty brew, and chewy to boot. Fairly clean aftertaste, with just some caramel notes lingering. Mouthfeel is smooth & slick, even while having a good amount of peppery fiz common in belgian strong ales. Nice warm feeling in the gut from this one. Dangerously drinkable. I always thought Allagash brews were missing a fullness in the taste & mouthfeel - this beer has that fullness.

avylover, May 14, 2004
Photo of Foxman
4.08/5  rDev 0%
look: 4.5 | smell: 4 | taste: 4 | feel: 4.5 | overall: 4

It pours a hazy, bubbly deep amber. A fistful of rich beige head erupts, then dwindles so, so slowly to a lingering layer of molded foam. Loops of sticky lacing lay plastered to the inside of the glass.

In the aroma, a muscular malt sweetness is capably matched by notes of spice and rounded dark fruit tartness. Coriander and nutmeg come to mind along with plums as the elements meld at the finish.

On first sip, the toasted malt sweetness stands tall, with a spicy hops presence just in the shadows. Hints of succulent fruits, such as plums and pears, deliver a mild tartness, but that's soundly whipped in the middle by a powerful pulse of alcohol. A more gutsy and earthy berry note surfaces near the end, then the perfume of hops joins the show to provide a lingering dry bitterness at the finish. If you can see past the alcoholic fog, there are some subtle and nicely blended flavor elements in play.

Medium bodied, it virtually oils the palate, coating slickly and granting a pleasant glow to remember it by.

Each part of this beer is damned good, but man oh man, that alcohol does its level best to blur that goodness. The dense malt sweetness and earthiness are well mitigated by the spicy hops and bitterness, and those are big positives, but at times the alcohol masks much of the subtlety that exists. And yes, that ABV works a bit against drinking more, because it hits real hard, not only warming, but clouding things up as well. But overall, in spite of that, it's a tasty blended balance that delivers a saucy flavor, and that's a pretty fair bottom line.

Foxman, May 12, 2004
Photo of LuckySevens82
4.5/5  rDev +10.3%
look: 3.5 | smell: 5 | taste: 4.5 | feel: 5 | overall: 4

750 ml bottle. Cork popped out so easily for as 750 that I nearly threw the bottle to the ground since I was expecting more of a fight.
Pours a hazy mahogany (could be from the yeast though). A nice tan head follows (while there is no need for a hard pour on this one, the lacing still is somewhat lacking, one of the few downpoints of this beer).
Smell is unique. Plums are a major character of the aroma, along with alcohol, and a small amount of hop spice (not a whole lot of citrus in this one). One weird thing I noticed is that I kept smelling bubblegum. Nevertheless, it was nice.
This is a great tasting brew. the 4 malts, 4 hops, and 4 fermentations created a very interesting combination of tastes. Plums, pears, dark malts (bready, caramel, a little biscuity), and alcohol (which is to be expected of a quad). This is very port like in flavor and very sweet.
I will definitely have this beer again. I tried one as soon as it came out and bought another to cellar for a while to see how the taste changes over time. A fine beer and one that I would highly recomment.

Note: the reason that drinkability is not a 5 is the abv. I have a hard time downing a lot of a 10% abv brew. One bottle is fine, more than that would be pushing it. Although, if it weren't for the alcohol content, I could easily drink this one all night.

LuckySevens82, May 12, 2004
Photo of ADR
4.3/5  rDev +5.4%
look: 4.5 | smell: 4.5 | taste: 4.5 | feel: 4.5 | overall: 3.5

Out of a bottle, AOBF 2004...

Sedimented dark ginger brown appearance with dull orange highlights. Fast rising ochre head and very attractive thick ropey laces. Flesh fruit aromas, pear, raisin, and cinnamon. Thick texture, catches in the throat. An alcohol build-up helps counter the viscosity and the heavy fruit flavors and there's an interesting hot mace and cinnamon complexity that shines through at the end. Well-brewed and high octane, I loved it though it may not be as likeable as tamer Quads like La Trappe. Just shy of really drinkable.

ADR, May 11, 2004
Photo of ColForbin
4.4/5  rDev +7.8%
look: 4.5 | smell: 4.5 | taste: 4.5 | feel: 4.5 | overall: 4

750ml bottle with a gold painted label - cork came off with an audible pop. Pours a deep red color with a thick, creamy white head. Aroma is spicey, with some cloves, coriander, and a little malt maybe even some citrus hops - a lot going on there. This beer tastes like a meal. Full of spices with a heavy body and a great warming feeling from the alcohol down the throat. Slightly tart, bitter finish with coriander that lingers on the palatte. An amazing brew, but at 10% I would advise sharing the bottle.

ColForbin, Apr 28, 2004
Allagash Four from Allagash Brewing Company
92 out of 100 based on 857 ratings.