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Allagash Odyssey - Allagash Brewing Company

Not Rated.
Allagash OdysseyAllagash Odyssey

Displayed for educational use only; do not reuse.

989 Ratings

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Ratings: 989
Reviews: 388
rAvg: 4.26
pDev: 9.62%
Wants: 261
Gots: 194 | FT: 18
Brewed by:
Allagash Brewing Company visit their website
Maine, United States

Style | ABV
Belgian Strong Dark Ale |  10.40% ABV

Availability: Rotating

Notes/Commercial Description:
Allagash Odyssey is a dark wheat beer aged for ten months, a portion in oak barrels and the remainder in stainless tanks. The recipe includes 2-row barley, malted wheat, a generous amount of roasted barley and Belgian candi sugar. This deep brown beer boasts an aroma of black treacle and raisin. The flavor hints at dates, with a mildly roasted finish imparted by aging in both medium and heavy toast American Oak barrels. The finish is dry, punctuated by vanilla.

(Beer added by: Todd on 01-30-2005)
Beer: Ratings & Reviews
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Ratings: 989 | Reviews: 388 | Display Reviews Only:
Photo of Gushue3
4/5  rDev -6.1%

Photo of imperialking
4/5  rDev -6.1%

Photo of JAHMUR
4/5  rDev -6.1%

Photo of djrn2
4/5  rDev -6.1%

Photo of monitorpop
4.25/5  rDev -0.2%

Photo of sideshowe
5/5  rDev +17.4%

Photo of Jspriest
4.75/5  rDev +11.5%

Photo of warnerry
4.28/5  rDev +0.5%
look: 4 | smell: 4.5 | taste: 4.5 | feel: 3.5 | overall: 4

Bottled Sept. 2008

A - Pours a deep reddish brown. Almost no head. Does leave a bit of lacing.

S - Lots of toffee, a bit of chocolate and dark fruits. Also a slightly tart presence and some oak. Very nice.

T -- Similar to smell, lots of toffee, some chocolate, and a big presence of dark dries fruits. Finishes with a slight tartness and an oak tannin dryness.

M -- Medium mouthfeel that is actually a bit thinner than expected. Not too thin bough. Finishes dry.

O -- A very nice oak aged ale. Nice flavor profile. Just wish the mouthfeel was a bit more substantial.

Photo of DarthKostrizer
4.65/5  rDev +9.2%
look: 4 | smell: 4.5 | taste: 5 | feel: 4 | overall: 4.5

Bottle shared by JealousChalice @ jerz halloween tasting

Look: Pours a dark brown color with a 1/8 inch head and very little retention

Smell: Lots of dark fruits on the nose especially fig and dates. Some nice caramel and oak follow the dark fruits

Taste: Very complex flavors that I expect from a very good belgian dark ale. Nice notes of tobacco and leather upfront then the dark fruits take over and punch you in the mouth exceptional dark fruit flavors and the beer finishes nicely with some oak and vanilla notes

Mouthfeel: Medium to full body with low carbonation

Overall: This is simply put a fantastic beer and highly recommended thank you JealousChalice for sharing this amazing beer

Photo of mdvatab
4.72/5  rDev +10.8%
look: 4.5 | smell: 4.5 | taste: 5 | feel: 4.5 | overall: 4.5

Bought this one at a great bottle shop in Durham, NC, and have been looking forward to giving it a try. Popped it open while watching the Cardinals win the World Series!

Poured from 750ml bottle into a Bordeaux glass.

Aroma: Vanilla, caramel, a twangy, wild, oaken barrel note, and then some nice, Belgian spiciness comes through after the bottle's been open and the beer has warmed in the glass for a while.

Appearance: Dense, light tan, two-finger head has excellent retention. Body is a dark ruby-brown. Thick, foamy lacing clings to the inside of the glass.

Flavor: Mmmm. Mildly-sweet malt comes through as rich caramel and vanilla. A little bit of oaky funk--doesn't come through in a tart way, though. Bitterness is just enough to prevent the malt from being cloying. The oak definitely plays a supporting role in the flavor of this one, which is fine. Fantastic flavor!

Mouthfeel: Medium-high carbonation lends itself to the foamy head and a lively brew overall. Medium, chewy body.

Overall: An extremely drinkable BSDA-- one of the very best I've every had. I've only ever had one other brew from Allagash, but from these two, I can tell that this is one heck of a brewery. Unfortunately, it's not distributed in Indiana, but I'm going to take advantage of any opportunity I get to try their other brews. I highly recommend this one!

Photo of jayhawk73
4.83/5  rDev +13.4%
look: 4.5 | smell: 4.5 | taste: 5 | feel: 4.5 | overall: 5

Bottled Feb. 2011

Pours a dark, dark brown color with a beautiful chocolate/cocoa colored two finger head. Excellent lacing on my snifter glass. This brew is impossible to see through, even when held to light. Great looking beer. In the nose I get: fig, tobacco, bourbon, oak, clove, and other dark fruit. Pretty smooth, and warming helps tremendously. Not quite up to the best Belgians, but it's REALLY close. HOLY CRAP. This is one amazing tasting beer! I definitely get caramel/toffee, w/ the fruits, slight bourbon, but this isn't boozy at all. In fact, I don't detect any of the 10.4% alcohol in this beer. It just gets better and better the more it warms too. It's super smooth, silky, and feels like a million bucks in the feel department. The only ding I can give it is that I'd like the feel to be a little more full bodied- but that's grasping at straws. Overall, this is an amazing brew and I recommend you buy it immediately if you see it for under $20/750ml... Cheers!

Photo of broken22
4.13/5  rDev -3.1%
look: 4 | smell: 3 | taste: 4.5 | feel: 4 | overall: 4.5

Beer is a dark brown color. Head can be thick if you pour too fast. They actually say to pour slowly into a wide mouth glass on the label. The head will hang around the entire way through. The smell is very faint. I really need to stick my nose all the way in the glass and take a big whiff in order to smell it. For me the beer just smell very malty. The flavor however is much better. The beer has a nice roasted malt flavor with a hint of a vanilla finish mixed with a fruity like sweetness. There is a lot going on and the flavor seems very complexly layered. The beer has a nice subtle bitterness to it and no hint of hops. The mouth feel is nice and bubbly.

Overall this is a great beer. The flavor is nice much nicer than I can accurately describe. Allagash make some great brews and this one is no different. If you can find this on the shelf it is a must buy no matter the price.

Photo of Pahn
4.2/5  rDev -1.4%
look: 4.5 | smell: 4 | taste: 4.5 | feel: 3.5 | overall: 4

750ml bottle into Duvel tulip. Bottled January 2008, drank September 18, 2011.

Appearance: Free pour yields a one and a half inch frothy offwhite head that sticks around a long time and leaves behind sweeping lacing. Pours a very dark ruby. Leaves streaks and islands of lacing.

Smell: At first, very roasted smelling, with a heavy layer of vanilla oak and some background dark fruitiness. The aroma gradually builds toward sugary and fruity. Some apple and booziness come out as well. Eventually, it smells strongly of a toffee / marzipan based pastry, with the oak influence always in the forefront.

Somehow, the aroma doesn't really elevate the taste (I think it smells a bit too different from the taste), but it is a very nice smell nonetheless.

Taste: Lots of roasted malt up front, then a healthy dose of oaky vanilla, resolving into a thin, very carbonated hit of simplistic BSDA dark fruit and Belgian yeast. The long aftertaste of the first sip is almost exactly like Raisinets, which is not at all a bad thing. Age has apparently smoothed out any hint of booziness.

Subsequent sips are similar, but always different to the point of interesting (and good). There's a slight note of oxidation up front (that i like), along with a persistent roasted barley and oak. Finish and aftertaste occasionally have a strong coconut flavor. Belgian yeast and apple-y, BSPA/tripel flavors start to appear up front adding lots of complexity to the flavor. Finish is mildly warming, but never "hot" nor solvent-like in the least.

It's worth noting that this is not the malty ester bomb exemplified by many other world class BSDAs. It's more of a wheatwine-ified Dubbel... with roasted malt; it's pretty crazy actually. Weird feel, weird flavors, but they go together very well. The heavily present oak adds a beautiful richness to both the flavor and aroma.

Mouthfeel: Medium bodied. Moderate to high carbonation. Slightly watery with an occasionally sticky finish. Feel-wise, this beer hits highs and lows. I like it for what it is, but it bears noting that other world class BSDAs have better mouthfeels that would also suit these flavors better.

Overall: As I said above, this is like a wheat wine with roasted malt and Belgian yeast. Call Allagash whatever you want, but don't say they aren't creative.

Personally, I find this beer to be a delicious experiment, and a masterful use of oak barrel aging (the disparate flavors sing when unified by that rich vanilla/coconut oak note, while they would probably crash and burn without it). I also think this is one of those beers that rewards the apparent gimmickry of aging. After 4~ years, the beer is smooth and well-integrated, despite a huge 10.4% ABV and wildly disparate flavors.

Another expensive Allagash beer where you get what you pay for. On a personal note, it makes me smile that one of the first craft breweries that ever caught my interest can continue to satisfy me no matter how many beers I try or "palate changes" I experience.

Photo of tjkinate
4.38/5  rDev +2.8%
look: 5 | smell: 4 | taste: 4.5 | feel: 4 | overall: 4.5

Yay, my 50th review! I have had this beer for awhile now and couldn't think of a better excuse to drink it.

750ml Growler, bottle date: January, 2010

Poured the beer into a large, tulip glass, which produced a surprisingly large tan and frothy head. The head dissipated rather slowly leaving behind moderate lacing, in addition to, a silky coated resign which remained until the glass was empty. I was surprised to see how dark this beer was, almost looked like motor oil, obviously allowing no light to penetrate, except on the sides where crimson shown through.

Dark fruits were detectable, but slightly muted. The roasted earthy malts were bolder, but still seemed rather subdued. Upon further examination I could detect some hops and just a little alcohol (pretty tough to hide with 10.3%).

This is definitely a Belgian Ale, no doubt about it. The overall flavors were quite potent, I tasted unsweetened chocolate with lots of malt, this left the tongue slightly bitter, but fades nicely as hints of alcohol and hops peak through.

Medium to heavy bodied brew with LOTS of carbonation. The high ABV lightly burns the throat as it passes through leaving behind a numbness between each gulp.

Overall, I feel this is a great beer. Do I think its worth the bottle price? No. I also have to say, I prefer the Currieux (which is still very pricey) and it is much more available. Will definitely buy this beer again when I win the lottery. (please lower your beer prices Allagash)

Photo of brewcrew76
3.78/5  rDev -11.3%
look: 4 | smell: 4 | taste: 3.5 | feel: 4 | overall: 4

Sept 2008

A - Brown with ruby hues. Thin tan head quickly disappears to a ring of lace.

S - Oaky vanilla with some dark fruits. Some bready malts but fairly subtle.

T - Oak and vanilla, toasted bread, fig, sweet malt, hints of prune, molasses and cocoa.

M - Low carbonation giving it a soft almost watery mouthfeel that leaves a bit of stickiness on the tongue.

D - A little more malt complexity would really work well with the oak. Solid beer.

Photo of cjacobsen
4.22/5  rDev -0.9%
look: 4 | smell: 4 | taste: 4.5 | feel: 4 | overall: 4

Thanks again to sweemzander for sharing this one.

(A) Dark deep ruby, almost looks brownish, but in the light it shines a really nice red. Pretty decent head on this one, about 1.5" of off white, tight bubbled head.

(S) Fruity with some citrus. Smells a bit yeasty. Some cherry. Wet wood. Some alcohol.

(T) The oakiness is quite apparent and pleasant. There's some plum, cocoa, caramel, some other dark fruits. You get some earthy taste from the choice of malts.

(M) It's very thin, light and dry

(O) Even though there is a slight hint of alcohol in the nose, it's not found in the taste. There's a good balance in this beer but there is a decent amount going on in the taste. The more it opens up, warmer it gets, and longer you take to drink it, it develops a lot and gradually changes.

Photo of dasenebler
4.28/5  rDev +0.5%
look: 4 | smell: 4 | taste: 4.5 | feel: 3.5 | overall: 4.5

750mL, January 2010 bottling.

Pours a dark, dark brown with ruby highlights. The head was generous at first; the lacing and retention, decent.

The aroma is mainly yeasty, with phenolic notes, some dark fruit and oak.

The flavor is quite complex and big, yet smooth and refined. Lots of toasty, nearly roasty malt flavor and a sweet brown sugar component. Not terribly fruity, some date maybe. Oaky flavor is prominent, but not overpowering. The Allagash yeast character is really nice with this beer, and the finish is long and dry. Only weak point is the mouthfeel, which seems really light for a beer of this gravity, though the carbonation is great and creams things up nicely.

Really nice Belgian Strong Dark here. One and a half years of cellaring is just about right.

Photo of nickd717
3.95/5  rDev -7.3%
look: 4 | smell: 4 | taste: 4 | feel: 3.5 | overall: 4

On tap at the 2009 Bistro Barrel Aged fest in Hayward, reviewed 11/14/2009.

Dark brown with purple hues and a small beige head.

Aroma is dark fruit, caramel, alcohol, and spices.

Flavor is nice but not quite worth the bottle price. Caramel malt, spice, raisin, fig, and vanilla.

Alcohol well-hidden. Dry finish with medium body and a pretty average mouthfeel.

Photo of slentz
3.45/5  rDev -19%
look: 4.5 | smell: 3 | taste: 3.5 | feel: 3.5 | overall: 3.5

January 2010 bottling. From notes.

First of all if you have a bottle of this batch heed caution. This bottle was a head hunter and almost committed murder on kiddynamite920. I only twisted the cage a few times and the cork shot across the room with gusto. Watch out!

A: Poured at about 45 degrees into a huge wide mouth Belgian glass from iron hill. Slow pour down the center of the glass leads to a thin head after two minutes only a thin ring remains. Wow this one has really tight bubbles and awesome legs. When held up to light it is a beautiful glowing red. 4.5

S: Smell is really muted but picking up cherries with bready and yeasty undertones. Only a hint of alcohol. Smell is definitely lacking. 3.0

T: Taste is also somewhat bland but picking up cherries, molasses and brown sugar. This one is very sweet. All in all pretty smooth but maybe this one is passed its prime. 3.5

M: Lively carbonation leaving a sweet coating on the teeth. Goes down pretty smooth. 3.5

O: Overall not too bad I'd like to try a fresher bottle next time. Appearance is where this beer really shines. All in all I'm glad I got to try this one. Again heed caution with the cork! Sorry Billy! 3.5

Photo of NuclearRich
3.85/5  rDev -9.6%
look: 4 | smell: 3.5 | taste: 4 | feel: 3.5 | overall: 4

Feb 2011 bottle poured into a snifter style glass.

A. A deep dark abyss with a medium sized head of an almost opposite color of light tan. The head fades rather quickly into a thin cap and has minimal lacing.
S. Dark fruit, vanilla notes surrounding a slightly boozy belgian ester background.
T&M. A big carbonated bite cascades over the tongue, smoothing into a robust thick and roasty character. Actually reminds me of a porter. Robust, roasty, thick, a slight bitterness and a hint of dark fruit.
O. Pretty good stuff. The oak isn't as strong as I thought it would be, but personally I think that's good. I would be happy to have it again.

Photo of Reagan1984
3.93/5  rDev -7.7%
look: 3.5 | smell: 4 | taste: 4 | feel: 3.5 | overall: 4

Picked this up at the Allagash brewery in Maine, earlier this year. I’ve heard some nice comments, so I am pleased to drink this while watching some pre-season Pats football. Feb ‘ 11 batch
Pours with a fluffy light tan head that rises to about 3 fingers and fades rather quickly. The beer is dark with a burgundy/ruby tint when held to the light some very light lacing.
Aroma has a lot going on. Dark fruits, spice and cocoa powder dominate.
Cocoa powder is again the first thing that comes to mind in the flavor. Some prunes, vanilla. Nice malt flavors mix with the cocoa notes. Oak just below the surface but well rounded. Not the raw oak notes that sometimes accompany an oak barrel beer. Some star anise and clove in the finish.
Interesting dry fluffy carbonation. Pillowy in your mouth.
A very good beer, but not quite the giant that I had hoped for. I kept waiting for it to open up even more as it warmed and it never really became epic. Very good…just not great.

Photo of russwbeck
3.7/5  rDev -13.1%
look: 3.5 | smell: 4 | taste: 3.5 | feel: 3.5 | overall: 4

A: Black pour with a big white head. Retention isn't great and not a lot of lacing.

S: Very malty. Caramel, oak, and a bit of booziness noted. Perhaps some chocolate.

T: Matches the smell well. Lots of oak and caramel. Very heavy on the malts and boozy with a slightly roasted finish.

MF: Carbonated well and a little heavier body than I thought. Decently dry.

O: Considering this is 17 months old I'd say its pretty good. Oakiness isn't terribly invasive, but the taste isn't top notch.

Photo of Bendurgin
4.33/5  rDev +1.6%
look: 4 | smell: 4.5 | taste: 4.5 | feel: 4 | overall: 4

Andy pulled this one out to share with the gang tonight. Poured into a tulip. This one pours a very dark brown with creamy beige head. Sticky soapy lace.

Rich milk chocolate aromas with lots of oak in the aroma. A little bit of a char aroma with some fruity characters in the background. The pallet mirrors the aroma nicely. Rich chocolate with a little bit of a bitter powdered cocoa to the flavor. Lots of oak and a bit of vanilla. More of a prominent fruity profile is noticeable on the pallet.

Creamy and full body with really subtle carbonation. Overall a pretty rockin' brew. Pretty complex and a lot going on. Really enjoyable sipper.

Photo of andrewinski1
4.18/5  rDev -1.9%
look: 4 | smell: 4 | taste: 4.5 | feel: 3.5 | overall: 4

Bottling from February 2011. Poured into a tulip. The body is almost black and there is a giant light tan head that leaves a lot of sticky lacing.

The aroma is chocolatey and woody mostly. Close examination reveals some typical Belgian fruity aromas.

The taste starts out slightly sweet with the same chocolate flavors introduced in the aroma. The oak is dominant in the middle leading to a dryish finish (for a Belgian Strong Dark Ale) that has a slight bit of heat. This is another really complex beer from Allagash's line-up.

The body is mediumish with a nice amount of carbonation.

More great stuff from Allagash. This is top notch. I'll be looking to replace this bottle soon.

Photo of ferrari29
4.5/5  rDev +5.6%
look: 4.5 | smell: 4.5 | taste: 4.5 | feel: 3.5 | overall: 5

Beer poured from bottle into a Baladin stemmed wine shaped glass - Aged for two years (July 2009 bottle)

A - Beer poured with a dark brown, almost black, colored body; espresso latte colored head formed, one finger in size; the head held well and formed a nice ringed layer of lacing around the edge of the glass

S - Cherry; figs; dark fruit; cork and oak scent edges; caramel malt back-end; vanilla; maple syrup; molasses

T - Latte espresso flavor up-front followed up by a creme/coffee, oak flavored taste; some hints of chocolate; as the beer warms, dark fruit flavors come up and finishes off with a nice hint of honey sweetness; oatmeal; vanilla; maple syrup; toffee

M - Thin body with a slight chewy feel; dry but semi-sweet flavor leaves a nice lingering feeling, so the flavor doesn't disappear very quickly; sweet and then dry aftertaste

D - Awesome drink; this is fantastic; great taste and flavor; awesome nose (could have used a hint of more oak and toffee); just really great stuff; enjoy, I know you will!

Allagash Odyssey from Allagash Brewing Company
95 out of 100 based on 989 ratings.