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

Not Rated.
Allagash Curieux (Bourbon Barrel-Aged Tripel)Allagash Curieux (Bourbon Barrel-Aged Tripel)

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859 Reviews

(Read More)
Reviews: 859
Hads: 3,526
Avg: 4.21
pDev: 23.04%
Wants: 476
Gots: 964 | FT: 34
Brewed by:
Allagash Brewing Company
Maine, United States | website

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: Reviews & Ratings
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Reviews: 859 | Hads: 3,526
Photo of DawnL
3.93/5  rDev -6.7%
look: 4.5 | smell: 4 | taste: 4 | feel: 4 | overall: 3.5

I had this at an Allagash tasting on 7/23/2009. It was a rooftop bar - hard to get anything off the nose when the wind was whipping the aroma of the beer across the isle of manhattan!

What Allagash had to say:
Our tripel ale aged in Jim Beam bourdon barrels for 8 weeks where complex new flavors develop, most notably coconut and vanilla. 9.5 - 10.5% abv

What I had to say:
I'm picking up more passion fruit on this brew. It was an interesting smokey quality - I assume from the barrels. Bourbon barrels are charred for both smokey and sweet qualities. I will either love this beer or be overwhelmed by it as it sits. The beer develops a white pepper characteristic which is a nice foil to the passion fruit. The palate is very alcohol driven. I would age this beer a little longer.

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Photo of srroos
4.2/5  rDev -0.2%
look: 4 | smell: 4 | taste: 4.5 | feel: 4 | overall: 4

Poured from a 750mL bottle into a snifter.

A: Golden and hazy with an ample white head. Maintains a nice cap after the initial head is gone.

S: Lots of alcohol, vanilla, and sweetness. Has a smell like a bourbon or brandy.

T: Fruity sweet and vanilla flavors, with a hot alcohol and slightly bitter finish.

MF: Highly carbonated and light on the tongue despite the strong flavors and alcohol. Very warming in the stomach.

D: Very drinkable, but quite strong. I would definitely drink more of this if it wasn't so expensive.

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Photo of RocPorterFanatic
4.92/5  rDev +16.9%
look: 4.5 | smell: 5 | taste: 5 | feel: 4.5 | overall: 5

I just had this on cask at The Olde Toad in Rochester, NY. Served in an 8oz. Tulip.

A - Golden hue with little to no head. Slight lacing left after each sip. Richer color than an American Pilsner, not as dark as a red. Didn't share the same color as other tripel's I've had

S - Malty. Over the top, orange peel and nutmeg were present.

T - Orange peel and nutmeg with an instant alcohol flavor. Not overpowering, no hoppiness. No bitterness, very clean aftertaste. The bourbon barrels definitely left their mark, as well as a very faint vanilla taste.

M - Just slightly carbonated, what you'd expect from an ale that had been ages in oak barrels for months. No extra carbonation at all.

D - This could be deadly. I'm glad I had a driver. This beer is amazing. I really couldn't drink more than 1 or 2 without getting hurt, but I might be willing to try.

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Photo of instrumentality
4.03/5  rDev -4.3%
look: 4 | smell: 3.5 | taste: 4 | feel: 4.5 | overall: 4.5

I received this beer as a housewarming gift from a buddy of mine. He tends to have good taste, and this will be my first Allagash experience (they just recently started distributing to California, from what I understand), so I'm
doubly excited.

One of the more informative labels, this one says it was bottled in August 2006, is from one of 520 cases bottled, and is 11% ABV.

Poured into my Stone IRS tulip glass, this beer emerges a cloudy golden apple cider color with minimal head that disappears quickly, leaving a foamy white halo and lace. I thought it was a tripel by look before I even identified that this truly was the style. Mouth-watering.

The odor strikes me as a mixture of phenol/band-aid, honey, and a bit of pepper. Not exactly mouth-watering, but intriguing nonetheless.

The first sip is definitely true to how I understand the style, but with a bit of a twist. Up front, the burn of alcohol is apparent, but this soon subsides into a honey sweetness before finishing off with the spiciness of cloves. What stands out, though, is the mouthfeel. At first, it almost feels flat, but then the carbonation begins to make itself known, and then the body takes on a thin yet creamy quality.

I'm not familiar with the characteristics of bourbon, so I can't say what bourbon barrel aging does for this beer, but it's definitely unique. As I take more sips, the burning becomes easier, and the honey sweetness comes more to the forefront. The mix of honey sweetness and clove spiciness doesn't entirely work for me, as it's as if the beer is trying to be refreshing and warming at the same time, and to me, these two efforts contradict each other.

However, the more I sip and the warmer this drink gets, the more everything comes together. Both the spiciness and the sweetness mellow out and the tasting experience becomes remarkably balanced due to the emergence of a third element that was previously masked by the spiciness: banana. This new medley of flavors is nearly perfect--more on the warming side than the refreshing side, but very smooth going down.

It took some time, but in the end, this beer has won me over, and if I can track it down, I will definitely buy more bottles.

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Photo of weazal
3.85/5  rDev -8.6%
look: 4.5 | smell: 4.5 | taste: 3.5 | feel: 4 | overall: 3.5

SMELL: Warm, sweet citrus. Pulpy in the likes of mandarin oranges and tropical fruits. Full, potent aroma that's immensely pleasing and begs you to take a sip. There is a balanced spiciness to it along the lines of white pepper.

TASTE: Starts off mildly spicy with a prevalent, but not overpowering degree of bourbon, alcohol, and dryness. The citrus and sweetness from the aroma is much more toned down if not even really present at all. Enjoyable, fuller mouthfeel and balanced carbonation.

More enjoyable in small sips with the mindset of sipping bourbon. Unique, but not a favorite.

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Photo of WissBrauSean
4.31/5  rDev +2.4%
look: 4 | smell: 4.25 | taste: 4.25 | feel: 5 | overall: 4.25

World Class-ish!

I had this on a sampler flight last night and am referring to my notes on the bar napkin, BUT after reviewing the style characteristics, I upped my score from last night.

It poured a crystal clear straw color (bar lighting) with a full creamy white head that left nice sticky lacing.

It's aroma was of malts and intoxicating bourbon.

The flavor was rooted in malt sweetness with the bourbon on top and very little in the way of hop bitterness.

The mouthfeel was outstanding! It was medium bodied and moderately carbonated. It's pretty sweet although not real heavy, but at the end all of that fades away to an extremely pleasant lightly dry finish. It really goes through a neat transformation there.

Overall, I think it fits with the style pretty well. It's a little on the sweet side but probably one of the most pleasant beers that I have had.

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Photo of twage04
4.24/5  rDev +0.7%
look: 4 | smell: 4.25 | taste: 4.25 | feel: 4.25 | overall: 4.25

The barrel imparted flavors are far from subtle on this beer. Some vanilla, bourbon and wood stick out. A very boozy tripel where the yeast imparted flavors take more of a back seat than usual. Beer is dry, a little tart, and complex. Definitely a beer to sip and contemplate rather than drink at a normal pace. Lots of carbonation and color is a brownish yellow.

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Photo of Mdez
4.75/5  rDev +12.8%

Had this just an hour or so ago on-tap at the Bier Haus in Savannah, GA; it was wonderful and not like anything I've had before. Had a great taste with a little bourbon flavoring and was smooth as silk until I almost licked the glass clean. Maybe I will get a few of the bombers when I see them...

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Photo of DeathbySexyBT
4.25/5  rDev +1%
look: 4 | smell: 4 | taste: 4.5 | feel: 4.5 | overall: 4

A: Hazy wheat gold with a decent one-finger head that was both persistent and hefty enough to provide an aromatic symphony throughout the enjoyment of this majesty of a brew.

Serving note: I drank this out of my Satan tulip and a buddy had one out of a standard pint glass. This is truly one of those beers where the glass makes a difference. As such, I recommend (and as stated by Allagash on the label), a wide-mouth snifter.

S: The smell of this feat in brewing starts off with the prickly scent of alcohol followed by tropical punch-like sweetness that increases in direct proportion with the temperature of the beer. There is a faint bourbon hint in the background as well.

T: The oak barrel bourbon really makes its stand here and never gives up the fight to remind you that this tripel is aged. However, this is not to say that the oak barrels dominate the scene. The punch scent carries over into the palate but commingles nicely with the hop bitterness and stark alcohol overtones.

M: A little heavy on the alcohol finish, but this is still an absolute feat to have something as fragile as a tripel aged with bourbon oak barrels come across so smoothly. Bravo!

D: If you are a gulper then do not waste your money of Allagash's time. This beer is meant for sipping in a relaxed setting. Beers like this are to be appreciated.

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Photo of natemort13
4.27/5  rDev +1.4%
look: 4 | smell: 4.5 | taste: 4 | feel: 4.5 | overall: 4.5

Reviewed from notes, 3/16/2012.

Hazy yellow straw pour with a creamy white head that fades to a nice pocked cap.

The nose is woody and yeasty with hints of citrus. Slightly perfumy with some orange and crushed smarties as well as lemon rind and floral characteristics.

The tripel comes first with sugar coated sweet lemon. Caramelly bourbon appears on the mid palate and stays smooth through the finish. Slightly chalky yeast, alcohol is barely noticeable.

Mouthfeel is creamy and full bodied with not much carbonation. Scarily drinkable.

overall it is a magnificently balanced and complex tripel.

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Photo of KGilmour
4.28/5  rDev +1.7%
look: 4.25 | smell: 4.25 | taste: 4.25 | feel: 4.5 | overall: 4.25

Look: Golden orange. A bit cloudy. Decent head and good lacing.

Smell: Orange, malt, sweet. Oak flavor with hints of vanilla. I didn't get any coconut as other reviewers have. The bourbon is well noticeable.

Taste: Orange and sweet malty. The vanilla not as strong as on smell. Oak some hoppy bitterness. Strong but smooth.

Feel: High carbonation and high alcohol.

I split a bottle of this with a friend and it still knocked me down. The bourbon came through quite heavily in this bottle. Very tasty, but take it in small doses with friends.

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Photo of angelogarcia3
4.68/5  rDev +11.2%
look: 4.5 | smell: 4 | taste: 5 | feel: 4.5 | overall: 5

Another of my favorite beers. This beer started me on the quest for Bourbon Barrel-aged beers. A light colored almost golden in color beer. Cloudy with a thin ivory-colored head. A very light nose of bourbon and clove. The mouthfeel is almost syrupy with slight effervense. The bourbon taste is very pronounced with hints of clove, and honey.

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Photo of RyanLigeia
4.2/5  rDev -0.2%
look: 3.5 | smell: 3.5 | taste: 4.5 | feel: 4.5 | overall: 4.5

Appearance 3.5 -A semi hazy light golden color. Lots of visible carb bubbles racing to the surface. A large head on this one that condenses to a 1/3 inch layer of thick foam that sits over the top for a long long time.
Smell 3.5 - A faint white wine aroma. Light grapes, alcohol, belgian yeast. Not bad but nothing too out of the ordinary for a tripel. Wondering where all the wood and bourbon is...
Taste 4.5 - There they are. Delicious. Very very unique in such a great way. Belgian yeastiness, light grapes, alcohol, the wood starts to show through in the middle and a smooth sweet bourbon kiss at the end. The onnnly thing i could do without is the slight bitterness but thats to be expected with the triples so I can't really say much.
Mouthfeel 4.5 - Very comfortably warming on the way down. Enough carbonation to still feel like you're drinking a beer but it coats your mouth completely and goes down so smooth. Compliments the flavors VERY well!
Overall 4.5 - Delicious and original. Cool to get those triple flavors + aromas along with the wood and bourbon taste from the aging. I feel like theres not too many companies aging belgian styles like this, I dig it. $20 for a 750 ml is a little steep but if you're not worried about the price id say give it a try for sure!

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Photo of HoboAGoGo
4.05/5  rDev -3.8%
look: 4 | smell: 4 | taste: 4 | feel: 4.5 | overall: 4

Poured a beautiful orangish color, but the head dissipated a little too quickly. Smelled of sweet, and of bourbon. Tastes like a well-made tripel, nothing too out of the ordinary until you start to taste the bourbon that is most prevalent at the end. Let me take another sip. Sugars, bourbon, slight bitterness, pepper, candy. Expensive, so I doubt I'll ever try it again, kind of a shame I decided to drink it during a re-run of "The King of Queens."

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

Got this in a trade from sephiroth.

Bottled February 2006.

A: golden yellow that's hard to see through. one inch offwhite head

S: sour fruit notes like a wild ale. hints of the bourbon are there.

T: starts off like a high ABV trippel, then the bourbon comes in, but not too much. the sour fruit notes are quite nice.

M: the alcohol warms the mouth and throat and belly. still the carbonation makes up for it somehow.

D: given the alcohol percentage, It's not bad drinkability. Still, after one 750 of this, and I'd be pretty trashed.

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Photo of hammer09
3.33/5  rDev -20.9%
look: 3 | smell: 2.5 | taste: 3.5 | feel: 3.5 | overall: 4

Poured a cloudy, honey-colored ale with 1/2 inch head. Head dissipates quickly and lacing is relatively thin. Smell is mildly cidery and sour with little hop character. For a bourbon barrel-aged tripel, this beer doesn't really exhibit the aroma of bourbon barrel aging. Taste is alcoholic and sweet, but not overly flavorful at first. However, the flavor does improve as the beer is consumed. But, I wasn't blown away by the flavor as I expected. As with smell, the bourbon-barrel characteristics are not present in the taste of this beer. Flavors typically associated with a Belgian Tripel are present and in this respect this beer reminds me of one of the Unibroue Special Editon series. Mouthfeel is warming and alcoholic; carbonation is crisp. While not overly impressed with its lack of bourbon flavors, this is still a good, drinkable beer, albeit in limited quantities due to its relatively high %abv.

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Photo of klkatz
4.46/5  rDev +5.9%
look: 3.5 | smell: 3.75 | taste: 5 | feel: 4.5 | overall: 4.5

the complexity in the flavor of this beer cannot begin to be described, it seemed like something different every time.... spicy, bready, sweet, licorice... and all at 11% abv... you wouldn't know... the barrel aging process for beers is ingenius...

world class... no doubt.

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Photo of ScottyTheBeerGuy
4.32/5  rDev +2.6%
look: 4.25 | smell: 4 | taste: 4.5 | feel: 4.5 | overall: 4.25

I very much enjoyed this one from Allagash. Poured it while it was cold and the nose wasn't great, but as it warmed it really opened up. As a huge bourbon fan, I thought it was a nice addition to their tripel. Even at 11%, it was very smooth with little to no alcohol burn. Definitely worth a shot, especially if you're into whiskey. I'll be getting another soon for a nice treat.

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Photo of rawthar
4.1/5  rDev -2.6%
look: 3.5 | smell: 3.5 | taste: 4.5 | feel: 4.5 | overall: 4

Poured from a 750 ml into a Weyerbacher tulip

A- Hazy pale sun-gold body, lots of active carbonation streaming from the center of the glass like an eternal flame with a frothy white, adherent head of impressively large bubbles, almost defying gravity.

S- Vanilla oak dominates an undertow of ripe fruits and bready yeast, exemplary aromas of the style with the bourbon barrel twist, though overall, fairly subdued.

T- Also subdued, but the oak barrel vanilla really evens out the trippel fruitcake-like qualities, making a much more consistent flavor experience across the entire palette. The aftertaste is especially impacted by the barreling, eschewing the lactic sourness of many trippels for a very smooth, creamy flavor. The bourbon comes through on the back-end, and improves significantly as the beer warms up. Alcohol heat is surprisingly well masked, despite the bourbon flavor in the finish.

M- From start to finish, a creamy smooth feel that is a pleasure to allow to linger in the mouth.

D- A beer made to savor for the long haul.

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Photo of phattysbox
4.03/5  rDev -4.3%
look: 4.5 | smell: 4 | taste: 4.5 | feel: 4 | overall: 3

Had this on tap @ the Gingerman in NYC. 8oz poured into a snifter glass. Appearance is copperish body with a decent 1 inch head. Retains throughout the glass, down to the last drop. Wonderful lacing.

Smells subtly of vanilla and bourbon. Sweet vanilla sugar wafers come to mind - but not overpowering by any means.

Tastes of smooth bourbon and sweet malts. Yeasty esters in the background and a lively carbonation, very nice indeed! The only drawback to this is its hot. The alcohol is not hidden well and burns the palate a bit.

Other than this minor imperfection - a superb sipping brew

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Photo of hoppyhampy
3.8/5  rDev -9.7%
look: 3.5 | smell: 3.5 | taste: 4 | feel: 3.5 | overall: 4

Poured on tap into a footed allagash glass. Cloudy pale yellow-orange. Half inch of head that quickly dissipates. Light carbonation and minimal lacing. Interesting rich malt smell, similar to a lager. Also some orange citrus and a bit of coriander aroma. I can tease out some nice sweet oaky notes but not much else. Full bodied on the palate. Coats my mouth with a syrupy texture. Oaky vanilla, butterscotch, and orange peel. Not as heavy as the malty aroma suggests but still very big. Bitter, slightly hoppy gives it a cleaner impression overall, aiding drinkability. Only slightly less drinkable than other tripels. I usually don't care for barrel aged ales because the oak can be overwhelming but I thought this one had nice balance. Not my favorite but a nice twist on the style.

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Photo of Thiestru
4.64/5  rDev +10.2%
look: 4 | smell: 5 | taste: 5 | feel: 4 | overall: 4

Poured from a bottle into a pint-sized pub glass.

Appearance: Golden, with a frothy white head that receded quickly. No lacing.

Smell: Oak, vanilla, and, most importantly, whiskey! This is one of the most remarkable-smelling beers I've ever encountered.

Taste: Again, that distinctly vanilla-oaky taste of whiskey. I'm trying hard to look past this flavor (which I love), but it's so prominent that it's difficult to. It whelms the tongue immediately. Underneath this, there's something that's very 'Belgian', a certain unique sweetness from the yeast that only Belgian (-style) beers have. As a beer AND whiskey fan, I'm very impressed by this beer.

Mouthfeel: Nothing extraordinary, but that doesn't mean it's bad. It just isn't imposing one way or the other.

Drinkability: Have you ever wished you could have the flavor of a good whiskey without the alcohol content? Well, now you can! Of course, this is still 11% alcohol, so it's not weak. What it is, though, it damned excellent.

Do yourself a favor and pick up a bottle of this. The style may be Belgian, but its soul is somewhere in Appalachia.

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Photo of jsapunor
4.82/5  rDev +14.5%
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!

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Photo of VitBAficionado
3.98/5  rDev -5.5%
look: 4.5 | smell: 4 | taste: 4 | feel: 4.5 | overall: 3.5

1-yr-old cellared bottle brought over by the old man. Pours a cloudy golden-rust with an off-white head so big and thick looking I thick it could support a kiwi dollar. Leaves behind lots of delicate lacing. Smells of vanilla, oak and alcohol. Didn't pick up any whiskey/bourbon notes in the aroma but it comes though very clearly in the taste... along with associated flavors such as vanilla and oak. Bit of honey sweetness and spicey yeast as well. Produces a nice warming effect in the aftertaste. Velvety smooth texture with just enough carbonation. Not as complex as I hoped or the easiest thing to drink but still highly enjoyable. Better than the first time I had it.

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Photo of BeerLover729
4.06/5  rDev -3.6%
look: 3 | smell: 4.5 | taste: 4.5 | feel: 4 | overall: 3

Dark amber but translucent with a one finger head when poured in a wide chalice. Strong bourbon smell overwhelming any malty or hoppy aromas. Very pronouced bourbon taste with soft but complex oak tannins and crisp malt finish. A light but sharp carbonation that brings out a burn from the high alcohol content reminiscent of whiskey/bourbon/scotch but with much less grimace. I love anjeo tequilla's but I have yet to get into whiskey/bourbon/scotch, and in fact despise JD, however this beer was very interesting and quite delicious. I bet it goes excellent with barbeque and intend to find out soon. (Bottled June 2006-Drank November 2007, Case 398)

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Allagash Curieux (Bourbon Barrel-Aged Tripel) from Allagash Brewing Company
94 out of 100 based on 859 ratings.