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Allagash Curieux (Bourbon Barrel-Aged Tripel) - Allagash Brewing Company

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Allagash Curieux (Bourbon Barrel-Aged Tripel)Allagash Curieux (Bourbon Barrel-Aged Tripel)

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3,233 Ratings

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Ratings: 3,233
Reviews: 844
rAvg: 4.28
pDev: 11.21%
Wants: 394
Gots: 771 | FT: 35
Brewed by:
Allagash Brewing Company visit their website
Maine, United States

Style | ABV
Tripel |  11.00% ABV

Availability: Year-round

Notes & Commercial Description:
Beer added by: Todd on 04-05-2004

Allagash Curieux was the first foray into barrel aging. Curieux is made by aging our Tripel Ale in Jim Beam bourbon barrels for eight weeks in our cold cellars. The aged beer is then blended back with a portion of fresh Tripel. The resulting beer is soft with coconut and vanilla notes, with hints of bourbon.
Beer: Ratings & Reviews
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Ratings: 3,233 | Reviews: 844
Photo of jsapunor
4.82/5  rDev +12.6%
look: 4.5 | smell: 5 | taste: 5 | feel: 4.5 | overall: 4.5

This is a 2008 bottling. Lots of beautiful white head on a typical tripel colored base. As I drink it, the lacing holds fast to the sides of the glass. A very pretty beer.

The aroma tells you right away that it was aged in bourbon barrels. I've had an '09 bottling and the nose on the 08 is much more civilized; the bourbon is not as overwhealming as in the more recent vintage. There is a definite woodiness lurking in the background.

The '08 bourbon flavor is nicely moderated and blends wonderfully with the oak and tripel in beautiful balance. The alcohol is well hidden. This is a beautiful beer, so good I don't want to finish it. The carbonation delivers all the wonderful flavors in perfect harmony.

Allagash makes great beers and this is one of their best!

Photo of ckeegan04
4.43/5  rDev +3.5%
look: 4.5 | smell: 4 | taste: 4.5 | feel: 5 | overall: 4.5

Bottled March 2008

A - Clear, golden-orange with a thick two finger foamy head. Very active carbonation quickly rising to the top. Foam slowly recedes to about one finger and lasts through the entire beer.

S - Initially the aroma is a touch one dimensional with a light Belgian fruitiness expected from average tripels. As the beer warms it really begins to open up though. Hints of lemon zest and alcohol soaked pears. A touch of vanilla and a light oakiness come through later on and just a touch of bourbon. None of the aromas are too strong and they all meld together wonderfully.

T - Pale malts and light sweetness up front. Hints of ripe pears and just a touch of citrus zest. Bourbon is very muted throughout the beer with hints of oak and vanilla coming through underneath all of the other tastes. Vanilla becomes a bit stronger as the beer warms. An excellent balance between bourbon and tripel.

M/D - Medium bodied with a very crisp mouthfeel. Easy drinking for such a big beer. Certainly will be looking for a couple of these to lie down for a few years.

Photo of mdfb79
4.25/5  rDev -0.7%
look: 4 | smell: 4 | taste: 4.5 | feel: 4.5 | overall: 4

From 5/29/10 notes. Batch is from July 2009.

a - Pours a nice golden color with a little bit of white head.

s - Smells of vanilla, oak, sour fruits, and citrus.

t - Tastes of oak, vanilla, and smooth fruity malts. Also some whiskey, but not as much as I would have thought.

m - Medium body and light carbonation.

d - I thought this was a great tripel. I thought this tripel aged great in whiskey barrels. Would love to try again.

Photo of irishking1977
4.5/5  rDev +5.1%
look: 4.5 | smell: 4.5 | taste: 4.5 | feel: 4.5 | overall: 4.5

A: Bright golden hue with a massive white head that dissipates quickly, leaving some lacing. Nice looking tripel. But this seems to be much more than a tripel.

S: Woah. Massive scent of vanilla hits the olfactory senses, along with tropical fruits and somewhere in the background is the alcohol. Seems they did a good job hiding the high ABV.

T: Intuition confirmed. The alcohol is hidden very well in this one. The style of a tripel aged in oak barrels seems to have melded together quite well. Sweet, tropical fruits, candi sugar leads it's way to a woody, vanilla finish that lasts quite awhile. Not as intense and varied in flavor in comparison to Allagash's Odyssey, but easier to drink than the also very good Odyssey.

M: Near perfect carbonation. Not too spritzy, not too flat. Just right. The barrel aged aspect of this beer comes through in the mouthfeel, where woody, vanilla finish lingers for some time on the palate. That's a good thing.

D: Easy to drink, but meant to be sipped and enjoyed. I expect this one to creep up rather quickly, considering the robust ABV. Though, it is a bit pricey, I'd most certainly try this again.

Photo of treehugger02010
3.65/5  rDev -14.7%
look: 4 | smell: 4 | taste: 3 | feel: 4.5 | overall: 4

I bought this beer at Capone's Restaurant Norristown, PA. I poured it into a water glass.
Appearance: The body is a cloudy gold color. The head is an off white color, 3 fingers tall, has great retention, thick lacing and tiny bubbles.
Smell: The aromas are grassy, orange peel, and pineapple.
Taste: The flavors are spring, grapes, and wheaty.
Mouthfeel: The mouthfeel is crisp with a medium body.
Drinkability: This beer is tasty beer.
Don't drink and review.

Photo of bceagles39
3.86/5  rDev -9.8%
look: 4.5 | smell: 3.5 | taste: 4 | feel: 4.5 | overall: 3.5

Had on draft at the Great Lost Bear in Portland, Maine on May 2, 2010.

Looks like cloudy applejuice. Dense white head that laces nicely throughout.

Vanilla and woody aromas overpower.

Tastes smoky and toasty with a whisky finish. I didn't get much of the classic triple flavors to come through.

Great creamy mouthfeel.

Very fun to try, the smokiness was almost a little too exagerrated. But enjoyed trying it.

Photo of beerwolf77
4/5  rDev -6.5%
look: 4 | smell: 4 | taste: 4 | feel: 4 | overall: 4

Big thanks to sweemzander for bringing this bottle to our tasting.

Poured into my tulip the beer is lightly hazed golden yellow. About one finger of off white head forms and settles leaves moderate sticky lace.

The aroma is solid dose of candied fruits and belgian yeast. Hints of spice, oak and vanilla come through as it warms. The bourbon is present but not super potent. Just enough to remind you that this is a barrel aged beer.

The flavor is more sugar drizzled fruit and yeast. The bourbon is much more present in the flavor than the nose. Super dry finish with a touch of heat.

Medium body with light carbonation. Smooth and dry as a bone.

Overall a very flavorful and interesting beer. I bit hot which makes it a sipper but pleasant. I hope to try more of this style in the future.

Photo of sweemzander
3.95/5  rDev -7.7%
look: 4.5 | smell: 4.5 | taste: 4 | feel: 4 | overall: 3

750mL corked & caged bottle split. Poured into a tulip. Bottled January 2010.

(A)- Pours a clear golden orange color that produced a great white head that left a thin ring of lacing as it slowly dissipated.

(S)- Yeasty, with a good woody oak vanilla-ish bourbon note in front of a light biscuity-wheat & banana earthiness; very subtle though.

(T)- A light & spicy wheat & lemon behind a big, warm, & woody oak vanilla sweet middle. Finishes the same as the middle.

(M)- A good carbonation level. A tad high in the boozy warmth as it goes down with that oaky vanilla sweetness. Some of the traditional tripel nuances come through, but at this stage, the barrel aging is taking center stage. The richest tripel to have crossed my lips.

(D)- An interesting tripel. I have never seen a bourbon barrel aged one at that, so this one intrigued me. Definitely is a good one, but the barrel aging definitely overpowers most of what this has to offer; over time should smooth this out. I am glad I split this, cause I would have difficulty.

Photo of BeerFMAndy
4.12/5  rDev -3.7%
look: 4 | smell: 4.5 | taste: 4 | feel: 4 | overall: 4

750 ml bottle split and poured into a Tripel Karmeliet tulip. Bottling: January 2010, Cases Bottled: 815, 11% ABV, "Pour slowly into a wide-mouth glass."

Thanks to Sweemzander for bringing this to our tasting last night!

A - With an easy cork pop from Sweem that went flying through the air, off the ceiling, and hit Todd, I decided to pour it slow like suggested. Full carbonation created a densely packed three-finger head with great retention and thick lace left on the glass. A very light haze formed in the golden yellow beer. Sexy.

S - Curieux smells unlike any other Tripel in the nose as it starts with a light Belgian candi sugar and honey sweetness. A long inhale chills the lungs with an alcohol presence but doesn't smell boozy at all. A hint of tiny hops gives a floral note to the aroma but the typical Tripel aroma of spice and yeast takes a back seat. Great balance and blending though as the barrel again gives it one unique aroma for a Tripel.

T - A little bit of warm alcohol and spicy booziness come out in this Tripel with some faint Belgian yeast poking out in the background. As the beer warms and I drink more of it, the barrel aged warm phenol and solventy alcohol comes out more. It's a very different take on the style, but still a good one.

M - Medium-light bodied with a crisp full carbonation finish. The warmth on the finish doesn't cloud any of the other flavors. Good spiciness on the finish.

D - Thank god we split this bottle three ways. It's good but the booze is a little much towards the end. Not much of the typical Tripel flavor but it's a solid beer. The alcohol does come out more in this than any other Tripel I've had, but it's also unlike any other version out there.

Photo of GregSVT
4.35/5  rDev +1.6%
look: 4.5 | smell: 4.5 | taste: 4.5 | feel: 4 | overall: 4

750ml bottle into a snifter bottled March 2009 - shared with a friend

A: Pours a cloudy light yellow color with a big white head that fades to a ring and leaves lots of lacing on the glass.

S: The nose was full of vanilla, bread/yeast, belgian fruits, and malty sweetness.

T: The taste is vanilla, bready malts, and that belgian yeast flavor. I detected a bit of hop bitterness on the finish but don't know if that was just my mind playing tricks on me.

M: The feel is relatively creamy with a medium body.

D: This is damn good and I would love to have it again. The ABV had my head a litte dizzy towards the end of the glass.

This really reminded me of a few other barrel aged beers like Backwoods Bastard or Nemesis. Sweet and lots of flavor. Highly recommended.

Photo of WitteBelgique
4.43/5  rDev +3.5%
look: 5 | smell: 4.5 | taste: 4.5 | feel: 4.5 | overall: 4

Excellent brew! I'll forgoe the classic evaluations and just give it a description.
I recently made a Belgian Triple and used honey as a priming sugar...This beer is very similar...I pretty much thought I had cracked a bottle of my Belgian Triple. I noticed what must be the bourbon flavours, although I couldn't pin them to borboun in particular as I'm not a big drinker of bourbon, but it had a rich smooth consitency that was very pleasing.
So to me this beer is a classic Belgian Triple...just as good as my home brew.

I'm just wondering where everyone else is with the honey flavour because it is right there on the top of the palate!

And yes this is a strong beer being a Triple...watch out...one 750ml bottle will leave you sleepy ;-)

Photo of homebrew311
4.54/5  rDev +6.1%
look: 4 | smell: 5 | taste: 4.5 | feel: 4 | overall: 4.5

Enjoyed this one on tap at Durty Nellies.

A: slightly cloudy, golden/orange color with a thin and dense white head. The head leaves a very thin layer that retains nicely.

S: strong bourbon presence on the front the offers huge vanilla notes which sit atop funky Belgian yeast notes, some cloves and banana notes in there as well

T: excellent balance between the sweetness and the spicy notes, I pick up the spicy notes in the mid palate and the finish is primarily bourbon. A bit warming as it goes down. Well balanced, the bourbon doesn't overwhelm...it just complements the tripel

MF: medium body, a bit sharp from high carbonation

D: this is delicious- my first bba belgian style brew, and it was awesome. If this beer weren't so spendy, I'd drink it way more often.

Photo of pastradul
4.62/5  rDev +7.9%
look: 4 | smell: 4.5 | taste: 5 | feel: 4 | overall: 4.5

This beer was one that I have had the pleasure of having on draft but never out of the bottle before.

Like many bottle conditioned beers, this one takes on a whole different feel from the bottle then it does on draft. Pours a nice gold, with a nice finger of head on it. The aroma is light fruit like pears and apples, with just a hint of alcohol. the mouth feel is smooth a refreshing. So much flavor packed in, yet so crisp. As it warms the fruit and belgian tang becomes very present. This is definetly on of my favorites!

Photo of cosmicevan
3.93/5  rDev -8.2%
look: 4.5 | smell: 4 | taste: 4 | feel: 4 | overall: 3.5

Poured from a 750 (bottled Feb 2010) into a Chimay chalice.

A - Pours a deep foggy golden honey with tons of carbonation. It is hard to see the carbonation because the color is so foggy, but when held to the light, there is a party going on in the glass. The head was thin and bubbly and didn't hang for long. Really attractive for the style.

S - Very strong woody smell mixed with a tripel. Very spicy and clove-like in odor. Citric notes are more in the background on this one.

T - Very unique. The bourbon flavor is there, but blends very nicely with the tripel. The wood flavor is mixed in also giving it something different. The alcohol is very present also and almost dominates the taste. The flavor definitely opened up on additional pours.

M - Alcohol is strong and gives my mouth a lively tingle.

D - Not the most drinkable beer, but at 11%, I doubt many would look for more than just one (even when sharing).

Worth a try, but didn't live up to the hype for me. I was impressed and it is a really good beer, but the dang internet set my expectations a bit higher on this one than reality. As with most brews, the flavor really came out after a pour or two, so you might want to let it warm up a bit before drinking.

Photo of WeedKing4
4.03/5  rDev -5.8%
look: 4.5 | smell: 4 | taste: 4 | feel: 4 | overall: 4

Bottle pours a dark golden orange that is clear using a chimay glass. The taste is of spicy dark fruits with a hint of yeast and oak/bourbon. Its drinkable considering the 11%, but its also not amazing by any stretch. Its pretty solid overall, but I was a bigger fan of the Odyssey.

Photo of drcarver
4.22/5  rDev -1.4%
look: 4 | smell: 4.5 | taste: 4.5 | feel: 4 | overall: 3.5

A - fluffy white 2 finger head with a slightly hazy golden color. great lacing and staying power in the head.

S - alcohol is in the front, middle, and back. slight oak flavor and (now that I read the bossman's review) vanilla

T - bourbon is definitely in the front, but not overwhelming or offensive. alcohol is all around but there is a tripel sweetness that holds it all together. as you go through and the alcohol smooths a nice woodiness is present in the middle

M - more or less smooth but a nice bite towards the back end. the aftertaste is short. medium bodied

D - NO!! and it shouldn't be!!!! Don't get me wrong its a great beer and I enjoyed it very much, but its slow going.

Photo of goldbot
4.2/5  rDev -1.9%
look: 4 | smell: 4 | taste: 4.5 | feel: 4 | overall: 4

Corked and caged 750 mL bottle printed as bottled in Feb. 2010.

Pours a pale, slightly cloudy yellow with thick, fluffy white head.

Light, sweet malt aroma with plenty of spicy, floral yeast notes. A touch of sourness permeates the nose. Hints of oak are present but there is no apparent bourbon character.

Lots of tannic oak and bourbon flavor notes. Spicy, yeasty, with plenty of ethanol flavor, without being overly warm or hot. Malt comes through more at the end, leaving a lingering oaky aftertaste. As the beer warms, it becomes slightly less oaky but the bourbon character comes through a little more.

The oak tannins give this beer a big, biting body. The moderate carbonation level helps to lighten it up a bit and adds to the crispness. Overall a complexly flavored brew with good balance. On the warm and alcoholic side, but surprisingly drinkable and smooth for the high ABV.

Photo of Daniellobo
4.13/5  rDev -3.5%
look: 4.5 | smell: 4 | taste: 4 | feel: 4 | overall: 4.5

Nice and subtle ale with a long and pleasing range.

Presentation: 750 ml corked brown bottle. Simple label design with a light ocher background and brown typography crowned by an illustration of barrels, aiming to have a limited and hand-crafted aesthetic. Notes main style with a side paragraph explaining the limited and special intent of these series, main brewing procedure, character, cellaring and serving suggestions. Shows date of bottling (January 2010), cases bottled (815), and Alc. by Vol. (11%). Served in a wide tulip glass first, followed by a snifter.

A - Lightly hazy golden pour with a nice frothy head, medium retention, a persistent surface memory and some nice lacing.

S - Light yeasty notes, spices, and a bourbon whiff coating the finish.

T - Light and simple early on, as it warms up and lingers in the mouth a rich range of flavors emerge. Yeasty and malty sweetness lingering around a fruity and faintly spicy character, weaves itself into a vanilla and bourbon spectrum with a soft and warm boozy finish.

M - Medium-light body with good carbonation and a smooth, even creamy feel.

D - Nicely drinkable, it has a rich if very subtle range that makes for a nice long sipping experience.

Notes: One needs to follow the instructions... Early on I made the mistake of having the brew slightly cold and it sure does not offer half of the complexities that it reaches when it warms up to cellar or room temperature. Enjoyed in those conditions the subtle range emerges nicely and makes for quite a brilliant beer experience, otherwise one misses the richness of the brew. In fact I ended up switching from a tulip glass, which was fine, to a medium size snifter to finish it off. Not being a huge fan of tripels, in particular of some acidity found for me with some of the spicy ranges, this one coats with toffee and caramel notes a part of it, which rounds it up perfectly in my case.

Photo of popery
3.38/5  rDev -21%
look: 4 | smell: 3.5 | taste: 3.5 | feel: 3 | overall: 3

Tap, City Beer Store. Beer pours a hazy but bright golden color with a nice white head that sticks around well. The aroma is milder than expected. There are some light stone fruit and caramel malt notes. The oak note is one of the best parts but a bit too refined not to get pushed out of the way more than I'd liked. It also seems somewhat vinous, though it's a bit hard to tell under the bourbon. The bourbon is fairly harsh and there's too much alcohol heat. The booze really hits in the flavor. I think that I might like the base beer and I might like an aged bottle/keg, but this is too harsh for me fresh.

Photo of mithrascruor
4.7/5  rDev +9.8%
look: 4.5 | smell: 4.5 | taste: 5 | feel: 4.5 | overall: 4.5

750 mL bottle poured into a chalice.

Appearance: Pours a very hazy golden color with a hint of orange. Creamy thick head with good retention and great lacing.

Smell: Fruity yeasty aroma with pineapple, apple, and a bit of citrus.

Taste: The flavors are a bit mellow, but in a good way that gives it a light feel while still being very flavorful. The beer has a good biscuity/yeasty base with vanilla and fruits on top. Generally sweet (but not overly) with a bit of hop bitterness in the aftertaste.

Mouthfeel: Light- to medium-bodied with a creamy smooth feel.

Drinkability: Extremely (almost too) drinkable. There's barely any presence of alcohol in the smell and taste. Exceptionally tasty.

A really wonderful beer. Quite pricey, but totally worthwhile. Perhaps the best American-brewed Belgian-style ale.

Photo of jampics2
4.3/5  rDev +0.5%
look: 4 | smell: 4 | taste: 4.5 | feel: 4 | overall: 4.5

750ml bottle generously shared by Adam at a nice dinner get together. 2009 vintage, probably a year old at this point.

This beer looks great. An golden colored body with almost no head.

Smell is great - nice mix of Belgian yeast that puts forth some fruity esters, plus a nice bourbon note (mostly vanilla and oak). This is a combo I couldn't imagine before smelling, but it's great.

Taste is fantastic. This is such a unique blend of flavors, and Allagash put so many nice elements that go together better than I would have thought. Sweet caramel malt, a nice vanilla bourbon flavor, and then the tripel comes out. Spicey and fruity, this is close to perfect for this bourbon and Belgian lover. Bourbon hides the 11% well, no noticeable alcohol burn.

Mouthfeel is a touch thin, but the carb is good.

Drinkability was wonderful - I really enjoyed this and will purchase again. Great beer and a wonderful drinking experience.

Photo of Kadugen
4.4/5  rDev +2.8%
look: 4 | smell: 4 | taste: 4.5 | feel: 5 | overall: 4.5

Sweet Mahatma! This is one tasty beer. Please beer with me this is my first review. I guess you can consider me a person who thinks he knows more about beer than he actually does and this beverage showed me that revelation. I know enough to drink what I like and I love this beer.

Immediately upon poppin the cork the sweet aroma filled the room. It was poured into a wide mouth Chimay glass and looked like pure magic. It was bottled in Dec 09 and waited 4 months to reach my lips with its buttery almost caramel aftertaste. This isn't a chugging contest brew with its 11% ABV its best enjoyed as a night capper and would pair greatly with an apple cinnamon crisp dessert. Sit back relax and feel like royalty sipping on this fine brew fit for kings.

Photo of garymuchow
4.4/5  rDev +2.8%
look: 4 | smell: 4 | taste: 5 | feel: 4 | overall: 4

Bottled Oct 2005 (picked up in Orlando). I guess I've been sitting on this one awhile. In the cellaring forum someone thought this was past it's prime, which inspired me to get going on this one.
Really nice aroma that's a mix of soft bourbon, with some stronger alcohol (pushing boozy), and more typical malt characteristics of a tripel. Some of the malt may carry a little age on it, but it still holds true to style. I do so appreciate the softness of the bourbon instead of the sledge hammer so many barrel aged beers can possess.
Poured with a white head and large bubbles with ample space between them. Settles pretty quickly to a ring, of still larger bubbles than typical. Quite clear and golden with reddish amber highlights. A pretty color.
The sweetness of the malt and the bourbon blend quite nicely, with the bourbon holding forth until the end in a long finish. The finish is dry. The opening parts of the sip are most interesting. At that point all of the best aspects arrive - soft bourbon, sweetness, vanilla, mild peppery yeast, light fruitiness - it's really quite extraordinary. Once the middle comes the barrel flavors dominate.
The body is light and reasonably soft. The carbonation is subdued, really fine, although it feels filling once inside.
The drinks dangerously quickly. I keep reaching for another sip, yet I know I need to slow down with that much abv.
Slow down Gary, slow down. Unique flavors make the grade on this one.

Photo of cdizinno
4.5/5  rDev +5.1%
look: 4.5 | smell: 4.5 | taste: 4.5 | feel: 4.5 | overall: 4.5

A: Pours a slightly hazy light straw color with a nice head and minimal lacing.

S: Scents of fresh Belgian yeast with citrus hops and light hints of alcohol fumes.

T&M: Nice tripel taste with quality yeast, citrus hops, warming alcohol. Smooth, light bodied.

Quality brew and glad I was able to get it locally on tap. Probably not my favorite Belgian style due the the priciness, but definitely worth a try for a special occassion.

Photo of wesbrownyeah
4.3/5  rDev +0.5%
look: 4 | smell: 4 | taste: 4 | feel: 5 | overall: 5

Allagash Curieux(Bourbon Barrel- aged Tripel).
11% alcohol 750ml corked and caged bottle. Cork popped off like a mofo when opening.

A- Pours a crisp and clear orange fluid with active carbonation leading to a one inch head that falls to a thick froth leaving excellent patchy lacing.

S- Scents of fresh Belgian yeast upfront with grassy and citrus hops and light bourbon hints on the nose in alcohol fumes.

T-M- Taste is very tame for what I expected. Mild touches of Triple qualities of yeast, fresh citrusy hops, warming alcohol and very smooth and light bourbon flavors. At 11% I will say i'm amazed at the smooth mouthfeel from start to finish. Alcohol is hidden even at room temp. Wow. Light carbonation on the tongue allows this Triple to go down with a slight warming of the throat as it passes down to the belly.

D- Great beer hands down but for the price of 17.49 a 750Ml i'll most likely pass. Light bourbon notes compared to a regular barrel aged beer but with the mouthfeel and drinkablity of this one who gives a shit??? Cheers!

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Allagash Curieux (Bourbon Barrel-Aged Tripel) from Allagash Brewing Company
95 out of 100 based on 3,233 ratings.