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Allagash Victoria Ale - Allagash Brewing Company

Not Rated.
Allagash Victoria AleAllagash Victoria Ale

Educational use only; do not reuse.
very good

146 Reviews
no score

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Reviews: 146
Hads: 457
Avg: 3.94
pDev: 17.01%
Wants: 15
Gots: 82 | FT: 3
Brewed by:
Allagash Brewing Company visit their website
Maine, United States

Style | ABV
Belgian Strong Pale Ale |  9.00% ABV

Availability: Rotating

Notes & Commercial Description:
Beer added by: hopsaplenty on 04-29-2006

Victoria Ale was inspired by a visit to Victoria Mansion, in Portland, Maine and the visual references to Bacchus, the god of wine. The brewer's decided to fuse the worlds of beer and wine. Over two hundred pounds of Chardonnay (Vidal Blanc in 2010) grapes were brought in, crushed on site and added directly to the mash. Victoria Ale's aroma is fruity spice, and the taste presents subtle notes of green banana, black pepper, and fresh-crushed mint. With a focus on the subtle, wine-like character of the grapes, the 9.0% ABV brew boasts a pale copper color, Belgian yeast influence, and a medium body with a long candied fruit finish with hints of honeydew melon, and, of course, white wine grapes.
Beer: Reviews & Ratings
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Reviews: 146 | Hads: 457
Photo of cracgor
3.58/5  rDev -9.1%
look: 2 | smell: 4 | taste: 4 | feel: 3 | overall: 3

Advertised as a beer brewed with grapes, the first thing I noticed when I opened the bottle was a grape aroma. Smells similar to champagne. It is a brown beer with a weak head, perhaps from the aging process. It has a great taste, complex flavor with a good mix of wine-like undertones and a nice beefy malt. Light on hops, it is like they replaced the hops with grapes. Sadly, there is not much in the way of head which is what the low marks on appearance are for. Kind of a little flat for my taste, but overall it is interesting and fairly well done.

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Photo of LeRose
3.56/5  rDev -9.6%
look: 3.5 | smell: 3.75 | taste: 3.5 | feel: 3.5 | overall: 3.5

On-tap at beer pairing dinner, reviewed from notes.

Apearance - slightly hazy, golden yellow color. Half inch of fluffy white head.

Aroma - strong white grape aroma, a little grassy. Breadiness and yeast character takes a back seat - this serving, the grape was dominant.

Taste - followed the aroma. Very grape forward, very sweet, almost candy-like.

Mouthfeel - medium-bodied, very drying on the finish.

Overall, I felt the grape was far too prominent and the beer was far too sweet. This combination just didn't work well for my tastes. It is well-made, but not one I have to have.

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Photo of meathookjones
3.56/5  rDev -9.6%
look: 4 | smell: 3 | taste: 3.5 | feel: 4 | overall: 4

Golden orange body with a nice tall eggshell white head. Aroma was a bit strange with sweet grapes and biscuit malt coming on strong. Very light spiciness and yeast. Biscuits, yeast and spiciness over a pretty big sweetness in the flavor. Light alcohol peaked though. Fruity notes and a big sweet finish. Not bad but it was a bit overly sweet. Well carbonated and has some trailing warmth on the way down. Easy enough drinking and comes off pretty mild. Unique brew that would be interesting to see what a bit of age does for it.

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Photo of mutterfudder
3.55/5  rDev -9.9%
look: 3.5 | smell: 3.5 | taste: 3.5 | feel: 4 | overall: 3.5

2009 Bottle, poured into a Dogfish Head oversized snifter.

A - Pale straw color clear as day. Pours with a big foamy head that is short lived, but leaves a bit of lacing on the sides of the snifter.

S - Biscuits and honey, with a booming sweet nose. The nose has a fresh cut grass note to it as well.

T - Sweet riesling like flavors, with a bit of dryness. There's a hint of some wood here, but it's quickly extinguished. The flavor is juicy and sweet, with a bit of a pale ale note. The sweetness and winey-ness is front and center. Afternotes of pineapple and tropical fruit. Interesting.

M / D - There's a good carbonated mouthfeel, I would have liked it to be a bit drier on the palate. It's a bit too sweet to want to drink another glass.

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Photo of paulthebeerguru
3.53/5  rDev -10.4%
look: 4 | smell: 3.5 | taste: 3.5 | feel: 3.5 | overall: 3.5

Slightly hazy golden yellow color, with a hint of orange. Nice white head, moderate lacing, which could have been better. mellow head retention. Mild grape tones with some sweet pale malts. honey. some chardonnay flavors, spicy, tart, yet subtle. Low to medium body. active carbonation within the beer. a little dry, but crisp. very drinkable. downside of the strong alcohol burn.

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Photo of Derek
3.52/5  rDev -10.7%
look: 3 | smell: 3.5 | taste: 3.5 | feel: 4 | overall: 3.5

A: Light yellow-straw, slight haze, thin ring of retention, zero lace.

S: Biscuity grain, wine, hints of floral spicing.

T: Very champagne-like, toffee, biscuity grain, subdued fruity esters & phenolic spice, warming alcohol.

M: Well-attenuated, moderate body has a drying alcohol finish.

D: A decent drinker. I could crack one open for New Years.

Thanks Jeremy & Karen.

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Photo of thequeen711
3.5/5  rDev -11.2%
look: 3.5 | smell: 3.5 | taste: 3.5 | feel: 3.5 | overall: 3.5

I had to try this beer, since it bears my name... Taste is Fruity spice with a slight hint of wine. Aroma of bananas, black pepper and mint are infused in this light tasting offering. Big ABV here, I don't think I can drink a lot of this, resembles more of a wine that a beer, can't even call this a barleywine...But worth the try.

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Photo of Stinkypuss
3.49/5  rDev -11.4%
look: 4.5 | smell: 3 | taste: 3.5 | feel: 4 | overall: 3.5

Pours a stunning dark golden color with just a faint haze. The aroma is muted but smells vaguely of yeast and lees. The flavor has a lot of grape to it, subtle floral elements and a Belgian yeast funk. Alcohol is kept at bay for the most part, and this is a refreshing option. Full bodied, well carbonated feel with a slight dryness. Overall, this is a good ale but seems to lack direction in the smell and taste.

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Photo of PeprSprYoFace
3.46/5  rDev -12.2%
look: 4 | smell: 3 | taste: 3.5 | feel: 4 | overall: 3.5

Bought this at a local beer stop. Pretty pricy for what it ended up being.

Appearance was ok. Belgian pale/tripple looking with a transparent golden color. Head dissapated fast on this one. Lacing doesnt really stay on the glass.

Smell is yeasty and if a Belgian tripple but not very strong. Little hints of grapes.

Taste is that of a Belgian tripple and a belgian pale ale mixed with a heavy yeast taste. The grape flavor is nice in this one and makes a good complement. Slight spicyness.

Mouthfeel is a fine carbonation on the tongue with a slightly thinner feel than I was expecting based on the Abv.

Drinkability is ok and I could probably drink the whole bottle by myself but I would rather share it and drink a better beer next instead. Its a good beer but not worth the $17 I paid for the 750ml bottle.

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Photo of jdhilt
3.43/5  rDev -12.9%
look: 3.5 | smell: 3 | taste: 3.5 | feel: 4 | overall: 3.5

Pours a two-finger white head that fades slowly leaving a good lace. Almost cloudy amber color. Grape?? nose. Medium carbonation and medium bodied. Flavor is grape/hops, not sweet, slight tin finish. Grapes and malt don't mix. High ABV is hidden. Not worth $15.59 for a 750ml bottle from Tully's Beer & Wine Wells, Me.

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Photo of joepais
3.43/5  rDev -12.9%
look: 4 | smell: 3.5 | taste: 3 | feel: 3.5 | overall: 4

Again thanks to Stan for sharing these. Stan figured we should do both back to back. I like red wine more than white so I think the same can be said for these two brews. The bottle poured into a snifter produced a huge three finger off white head. There is tons of carbonation on this brew. The color of the brew reminded me of honey.
The nose had a ton of green grapes in it. The flavor was very spicy and dry like a chardonnay. I never thought I use that word in a review. It has a light feel to it with all kinds of carbonation. It was drinkable but not my favorite Allagash.

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Photo of maniac
3.42/5  rDev -13.2%
look: 3 | smell: 3.5 | taste: 3.5 | feel: 3 | overall: 3.5

Appearance was a hazy amber color with a medium frothy white head.
The aroma was of sweet fruit with a malty edge.
Flavor had a sweet malt base with hints of fruit and bread.
The relatively high alcohol content was certainly not very noticable beyond the warming effect.

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Photo of froghop
3.4/5  rDev -13.7%
look: 3 | smell: 3 | taste: 3.5 | feel: 4 | overall: 3.5

had this a little while ago but was not able to rate because it was 'retired', even though it is still found on the shelve.

pours a yellow-orange with a medium size egg-shell head, some lacing.

smell is faint, musty, sweet fruit, and some yeast.

taste is light yet crisp, fruity, tad bit of sweetness comes through, some caramel, pear, and some spice.

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Photo of kojevergas
3.4/5  rDev -13.7%
look: 3.5 | smell: 3.5 | taste: 3.5 | feel: 3.5 | overall: 3

2012 vintage. 750 ml brown glass bottle with hood and wire cap over a cork acquired at a Whole Foods in Pasadena and served into a Uinta brewing pilsener glass in me gaff in low altitude Los Angeles, California. Reviewed live. Expectations are high given the brewery, though Interlude did disappoint me recently.

Served straight from the refrigerator and allowed to warm over the course of consumption. Side-poured with standard vigor as no carbonation issues are anticipated.

Paired with an almond croissant.

A satisfying pop accompanied the opening.

A: Pours a three finger head of beige colour, fair cream, okay thickness, and good retention considering the high ABV. Colour is a semitransparent yellow. No yeast particles are visible. No bubble show.

Sm: Fresh biscuity yeast, clean malts, pleasant floral hopping, light lemon, and some cream. A mild strength aroma.

T: Honey, some cream, a clean malt foundation, floral hops, some light citrus hop character, light lemon, biscuity yeast, clove, and clean barley. Not as complex or subtle as expected. Allagash ought to do better, but I do like it. It's good, but it's far from great. Balanced but underwhelming.

Mf: Smooth and wet. The smoothness in particular really aids the flavour profile. Good thickness, but not ideal. Adequate carbonation. Moderate on the palate.

Dr: Drinkable and enjoyable, but not quite the quality I've come to expect of Allagash. This is far from their best brew. I like it, but it isn't great. Age might help it a little, but won't really upscale it. It's quite pricey for what it is.


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Photo of barleywinebrewer
3.35/5  rDev -15%
look: 4 | smell: 4 | taste: 3 | feel: 3.5 | overall: 3

I am a huge fan of allagash. They make great beer. It was with much excitement I found this and bought a couple to bring home from Maine.

A - It looks great. amber / brown, some haze with a large white head.

S - There is a lot in the smell which for me was hard to describe. Some candi sugar, light malti with an unusual dry characteristic which has to be the grapes.

T - Someone else wrote "Interesting but off". I think this sums up how I feel about this beer. definitely begian derived but taken on a right turn due to the grapes. It seemed to alternate through the bottle between sweet and cloying, spicy and dry / wine hints.

M - Medium bodied.

D - Goes down easy enough but has a mid taste and after taste that was a little different than what I expected.

I plan to let the other one cellar for 6 months and see if it changes in any way. An interesting beer - love it or leave it I think.

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Photo of krazyboi
3.18/5  rDev -19.3%
look: 3.5 | smell: 3 | taste: 3 | feel: 3.5 | overall: 3.5

Poured from a 750 ml bottle into a wide mouth glass. Vintage 2010.

A: Golden yellow color with a decent frothy head that dissipates quickly. A few sediments float around in the beer.
S: Sweet grapes, slightly malty, and alcohol.
T: Grapes, very slight bitterness, malts.
M: Medium thickness with low to medium carbonation.
D: I was expecting more complexity from this beer, especially at $18 per bottle. It is a bit more subdued than the Victor Ale from the same brewery, but the basic taste is dissapointingly similar. I would not buy another one of these bottles, especially at this price. Try it if you want, but don't say I didn't warn you...

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Photo of Rifugium
3.08/5  rDev -21.8%
look: 3.5 | smell: 3 | taste: 3 | feel: 3 | overall: 3.25

First had: on tap at Teresa's, Wayne, PA

Leftovers from an Allagash event apparently. Copper-amber color, thick white head that receded to a ringlet, leaving a bit of lacing on the glass. Aroma of white grapes, light lemony zest, pale malts. Elements of the aroma appeared in the taste naturally, white wine, toasty bread, pithy citrus, apple skins, subtly tart, and a touch of peppery spice, dry cardboardy malts. Medium body, slightly chewy, decent and quite drinkable, but a bit bland overall.

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Photo of jujubeast6000
3.04/5  rDev -22.8%
look: 5 | smell: 3.5 | taste: 2.5 | feel: 3 | overall: 3

Reviewed 7/21/2009 (2009 bottle):

Pours a clear bright golden colored body, with a big foamy white head, lasting. Fruity fresh aroma, light grapes, and dark grapes. Some grain smell, mustiness too, like horseblanket or something. Not too strong, though. Grapey taste, fruity, with a strong grape aftertaste. Light and crisp tasting. Some warmness, and a lot of carbonation. Light taste, not heavy, not alcoholy. Alright, light flavor, grapey.

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Photo of jsanford
2.76/5  rDev -29.9%
look: 3.5 | smell: 2.5 | taste: 2.5 | feel: 3.5 | overall: 3

750ml C&C bottle poured into a Tulip Glass. 2010 vintage.

A - Hazy gold with a thin white head that recedes to a thick ring and haze.
S - Sweet malt, grape juice, Candi sugar, and a very Tripel-like yeast profile. Smells like a grape Tripel.
T - Very close to the nose, I can't shake the grape Tripel descriptor. Sweet honey malt, grape juice, and spicy yeast.
M - Slightly sticky with a medium body and moderate carbonation.
O - Not really my thing, reminded me too much of the DFH Ancient Ales that use grape juice and honey. Once you've had one of those, they all kinda taste the same.

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Photo of ShamasUVA
2.69/5  rDev -31.7%
look: 4 | smell: 2.5 | taste: 2.5 | feel: 4.5 | overall: 2

On tap at Gingerman SoNo.
A:12 oz pour; cloudy golden belgian ale.
S:Wine, Belgian ale, and a peculiar and out-of-place phenolic/plastic smell.
T:More of the same... subtle and lovely with the exception
of the phenols.
M:Perfectly dry, ideal for this beer
O:Would not order this again unless I was assured this was a suboptimal batch.

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Photo of geexploitation
2.68/5  rDev -32%
look: 4 | smell: 3.5 | taste: 2 | feel: 3 | overall: 2.5

I love Allagash. I boost for their beers. I boost for Maine beers in general. Allagah's barrel series and their other special releases have been extraordinary. I've eagerly anticipated their Victoria Ale, which is brewed using chardonnay grapes.

Pours a dark honey amber with a big off-white head that fades gradually while lacing the glass. The nose is quite complex, with candi sugar, dates, and raw alcohol dominating, but there's also a sweetness to the nose that has to be derived from the grapes -- its fruit character is redolent of chardonnay wines. It's an interesting nose, but the grape characters don't fit very well into the rest of the beer. It's off.

"Interesting but off" could describe the flavor of this beer as well. It's quite sweet initially, with the grapes providing a cloying, sticky sweetness unattenuated by hops or bitter malts. That sweetness sticks to the mouth, clogging the palate. Victoria Ale feels high-gravity while rolling around the tongue, with relatively little carbonation for a bottle conditioned, Belgian-style beer.

Is this beer interesting? Yes. But the flavors do not meld together well; there's a reason that beer is made from grains, wine from grapes, and the that two remain separate. The influence of the grapes on the beer adds some interesting notes in the aroma department, but the overall effect is a bit gross... way too sweet, with a bit of a chemical tinge, this beer is unsatisfying, and not worth the price you'll probably pay. In the interest of seeking out unique beer experiences, I recommend giving this brew a try, but it's not something I'd go back to, that's for sure. I'm sad to say it, but it's the truth.

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Allagash Victoria Ale from Allagash Brewing Company
88 out of 100 based on 146 ratings.