Allagash Victoria Ale - Allagash Brewing Company

Not Rated.
Allagash Victoria AleAllagash Victoria Ale

Educational use only; do not reuse.
BA SCORE
88
very good

144 Reviews
THE BROS
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no score

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Reviews: 144
Hads: 437
rAvg: 3.95
pDev: 5.32%
Wants: 15
Gots: 77 | 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: 144 | Hads: 437
Photo of Mora2000
4/5  rDev +1.3%
look: 4 | smell: 4 | taste: 4 | feel: 4 | overall: 4

Reviewed from notes. The beer pours an orange color with a large white head. The aroma is heavy on the white wine notes, with some nice orange and other tropical fruit notes coming through. The flavor is more of the same. I get some biscuit and wheat notes, as well as some orange and chardonnay grape notes. There is a lot of fruit in the beer, and a decent amount of sweetness and Belgian yeast. The alcohol is well hidden. Medium mouthfeel and high carbonation. (464 characters)

Photo of tdm168
4/5  rDev +1.3%
look: 4 | smell: 4 | taste: 4 | feel: 4 | overall: 4

On tap at Busy Bee in Raleigh

A - copperish yellow; no head

S - winy, buttery

T - winy, buttery, a bit bitter, white grapes

M - viscous, smooth, warm, little carbonation

This definitely leans more towards the wine side but is a solid offering nonetheless. If you're a white wine fan this is for you. (304 characters)

Photo of rfgetz
3.9/5  rDev -1.3%
look: 4 | smell: 4 | taste: 4 | feel: 4 | overall: 3.5

Pours a hazed yello straw, light bubbly head, little spots of retention. Scent leads with a sweet and tart fruit component, biscuity malt, some herbal and earthy qualities. Taste tones down the fruit a bit and focuses it more on the grape notes, decent grain profile, some leafy and herbal notes. Medium bodied, lightly bubbly. Slightly better than the Victor as it tones some bold flavors down and blends them well. (416 characters)

Photo of BostonHops
4.15/5  rDev +5.1%
look: 4 | smell: 4 | taste: 4.5 | feel: 3.5 | overall: 4

750ml bottle served in a snifter glass.
2009 vintage.

pours a mostly translucent (there is a touch of haze) golden yellow, yields a solid finger-plus creamy white/off-white head; retention is decent, lacing is good. overall a solid presentation.

nose offers a mishmash of fruity notes: grape, lemon, apple, maybe peach... spice... vinous with a touch of oak. good aroma. taste follows nicely. again, 'vinous' is the operative word with this one; i think it works well. more spice and fruity notes... a bit of hops in the finish. alcohol presence is virtually non-existent. very enjoyable.

medium bodied mouthfeel with average carbonation. drinks easily at the outset but the grapes tend to wear on you after a while.

originally reviewed: 02-13-2011 (752 characters)

Photo of UCLABrewN84
3.67/5  rDev -7.1%
look: 3.5 | smell: 4 | taste: 3.5 | feel: 4 | overall: 3.5

On tap for Allagash night at Boneyard Bistro in Sherman Oaks, CA.

Pours a hazy yellow with an off-white head that settles to a film on top of the beer. Small streaks of lace form around the glass on the drink down. Smell is of grain and some light jelly/jam fruity aromas. Taste is the same with some herbal flavors on the finish. There is a medium amount of bitterness on the palate with each sip. This beer has a good level of carbonation with a crisp mouthfeel. Overall, this is a pretty good beer but it smells better than it tastes in my opinion. (552 characters)

Photo of rudzud
3.97/5  rDev +0.5%
look: 3.5 | smell: 4 | taste: 4 | feel: 4 | overall: 4

Enjoyed at a tasting at Julio's. Reviewed from notes.

A - Poured a crystal clear golden hue with a nice slightly rocky head that faded quickly and dissappointingly.

S - Smell i snice. Fair amount of vinous qualities on this with some light belgian yeast notes.

T - Taste is very similar to the nose. More of those belgian yeast notes, some nice malt sweetness, and the dry grapey qualities of the wine.

M - Mouthfeel is nice. Crisp, sharp, and try thanks to the chardonnay.

O - Overall, this is a good beer from Allagash just not worth anywhere near the $19.99 price tag for it in MA. (590 characters)

Photo of draheim
3.88/5  rDev -1.8%
look: 4 | smell: 3.5 | taste: 4 | feel: 4 | overall: 4

750mL bottle (2010) poured into a tulip. Pale golden color, crystal clear; white head subsides pretty quickly. Good carbonation.

Aroma is clean Belgian yeast and white wine grapes. Taste follows nose: yeast, pale malt, and a slightly sweet acidity from the grapes. Not sure I'd recognize grapes as an ingredient if I hadn't read the label. Very subtle. Crisp, sharp, dry mouthfeel.

Overall this is not a particularly complex or interesting beer, but I imagine it would be a great pairing for poultry or cheese. (512 characters)

Photo of Beerenauslese
4.73/5  rDev +19.7%
look: 5 | smell: 4.5 | taste: 5 | feel: 4.5 | overall: 4.5

2010 vintage, stored about a year in my cellar.

Body is clear gold, with an off-white head, poured easily to a half inch in a tulip style wine glass. Good head retention with curtains of sticky lacing.

Aroma of green grapes, light malt, hay, toffee and sugar, spicy, with notes of coriander and clove.

This really tastes delightful, it has so many interesting nuances and is very well structured. It starts with an oaked chardonnay flavor (although I knew it was made with grapes, I guessed the varietal before I read anything on it, but I am not surprised as it would have to be a white varietal and Chardonnay is the most likely given its ubiquitousness), and just as buttery, with a little vanilla, has a nice light malt structure, layers of different types of sweetness from the grapes and the malts, some ginger, and some tropical fruit notes (banana and lemon to start with), a bit of metal from the yeast and some green, grassy/vegetal hops. I think it is a stunningly crafted fusion of Belgian golden ale and wine grapes and really an amazing experience on the palate. I would just say that it is a little bit too sweet, sort of like a Spätlese, and that is after being in my cellar for a year which should have dried it out some. Finish is long, as the fruit and toffee sweetness fades to a touch of peppery spice at the end.

The body is light to medium and the carbonation is tight, giving this a creamy mouthfeel that is also a bit spritzy on the front of the tongue, somewhat like a ginger ale. The mouthfeel is quite extraordinary.

I am a big fan of Belgian-style pale ales, and I think this is a superb one. At 9%, it is not so strong as some other BPAs. This beer would be a good low alcohol substitute for a 14-15% chardonnay, and you could definitely use this to wean a white wine drinker into beer. Aging has not hurt it; I think I'll buy a few more and lay them down for a couple years. It is a bit pricey at around $18, but it is as worthy in MHO as Cantillon lambics made with white grapes, which I also adore; this is taking a belgian golden ale in the same direction, but with a bigger malt body and nice creamy carbonation that is a great meld of a golden ale and grapes. (2,206 characters)

Photo of nhindian
4.56/5  rDev +15.4%
look: 3.5 | smell: 5 | taste: 4.5 | feel: 4.5 | overall: 4.5

750ml bottle poured into an Allagash cervoise. Big thanks to 603BeerMe for sending this in a relatively recent trade!

A - Pours a somewhat cloudy goldenrod color with about 2.5-fingers of white foam. Surprisingly, this is, I believe, the only Allagash beer I've had that didn't have that signature rocky, thick, almost-whipped-cream head on it. Rather, it has a more modest texture, which while still creamy, is much more manageable. Decent retention, and thanks to the nucleation point at the bottom of the glass, a half-finger cap lingers for ages. Lacing is surprisingly very faint and sparse, with almost no lacing at all actually.

S - This is truly the closest nose I've had on a beer that approaches that of wine. It's amazing how much the grapes come through at first, and then the rest of the ingredients take it on a ride to remember. Me and my girlfriend always try to take tours and tastings at wineries whenever we go on vacation, so I feel I have a modest grip on how small-batch wines can alter and squeeze different notes out of a grape varietal, and I'm loving what I'm getting here. The Belgian yeast does wonders to the nose, giving a somewhat heavy breadiness but imparting a nice jolt of esthers and spice. Getting that spice, slight lemon, and hay in the finish.

T - As in the nose, the taste delivers a big burst of white grapes at first and then gives it a nice Belgian and farmyard twist. You can almost get the liquid extract of the grapes at first, and then the more leathery characteristic of the skin. Then the yeast takes over, bringing notes of bread, bananas, cloves, and cracked pepper. It finishes with a lighter side, with some straw, lemon, and the lasting effects of the spice.

M - Mouthfeel is medium-bodied with good carbonation. Definitely full-bodied for the 'style', but I feel it helps bring those bolder flavors out in the taste. Pretty smooth despite the high carbonation. Finishes quite dry, which fits in perfectly with the white wine connotation this beer suggests throughout.

D/O - Drinkability is high. As a fairly avid wine drinker as an active beer advocate (though my love for beer far transcends that of wine), I think this is an excellent hybrid between the two alcohols. It starts with an aggressive grape note, but from the middle to finish, the beer has time to develop its own complexities and flavors, so overall I don't feel one side dominates over the other. I could see someone who doesn't enjoy wine (especially white wines) not particularly enjoying this beer, as the start of the beer and the dry finish is ripped directly from white wine, but those who enjoy white wine could definitely jump into this beer. (2,678 characters)

Photo of nickd717
3.7/5  rDev -6.3%
look: 4 | smell: 4 | taste: 3.5 | feel: 4 | overall: 3.5

Draft at Gourmet Haus Staudt. $7 for about 10oz.

Hazy yellow in color with a one-plus finger white head and good lacing.

Nice aroma. Grains of paradise, lemon, Belgian yeast, perfume, and some malty sweetness.

The flavor is decent, but not for the price ($17/750ml). Sweet pale malt, floral and herbal notes, lemon and citrus, and some perfume.

Good mouthfeel with semi-lively carbonation and medium body.

Overall good...but yeah...not for $17. (449 characters)

Photo of ferrari29
3.8/5  rDev -3.8%
look: 4 | smell: 4 | taste: 4 | feel: 3 | overall: 3.5

Beer poured from bottle into a short wide mouth pint glass

A - Opaque golden/orange body; fluffy white head; served in short wide mouth pint glass, which might have reduced the head size; sticky lacing; no visible carbonation

S - Lemon; spices; orange; floral notes of rose; light white grape smell; fruity yeast aromas; grape brings out a sour smell; leather

T - Chardonnay grape explosion; tanning flavor of leather; touch of sour grape taste tickles the sides of the tongue; citrus flavor and spice; lemon, but not much of a lemon bite, tangy and crisp like traditional Belgian Strong Pale Ales; yeast flavor

M - Thin body; slightly bubbly; lemon tartness and crisp; immediately turns dry

D - Overall, this beer drank well; I think it could have used a bit less of the leathery smell and taste; could have used more lemony or spicy flavor to it; glad to have tried it, but would pass on the next one (907 characters)

Photo of zaphodchak
4.11/5  rDev +4.1%
look: 4.5 | smell: 3.5 | taste: 4.5 | feel: 4 | overall: 4

2011 bottling, green lettering on front.

Very even, fine white two-finger head. Hazy golden body. Awesome lacing.

Smell is sour and bretty, though smelled much sweeter in a mini Aventinus glass. I'm pretty sure everyone's glass was clean, but it smelled different in every glass.

Taste has some significant malt presence (surprisingly), with some faint vegetal presence. There's chardonnay grape in here, but it's subdued and really well integrated. (Not like Dogfish Head Red and White, which failed in that respect). Doesn't taste like chardonnay either (not lemon and pennies), but as I said, the chardonnay grape is integrated with the malt in the body. Trace of brett in the taste, but not much. Sweetness comes through (again, this is not chardonnay) and the brett character develops as it warms.

Mouthfeel is pretty average, kinda thin. Interesting considering the head and lacing, I expected a fine-grained texture.

Stuff like this is hit or miss. This is a hit.

At the price point? There are better things to buy for the money. Still, quite good. (1,061 characters)

Photo of impending
3.82/5  rDev -3.3%
look: 3.5 | smell: 4 | taste: 4 | feel: 3.5 | overall: 3.5

The Trappist. Served in an Allagash glass. Poured a slightly hazy golden yellow straw, dense white head subsided slowly, decent lacing.

Aroma is yeasty, spicy with minor apple and phenols plus a flora component. Not sure if the vinous notes are real or imagined, certainly not overt.

Taste is sweeter than the nose hinted. Fruity esters dominate the start followed by a phenolic spiciness. Would benefit from a dry kick. Aftertaste slowly fades and reveals a dessert wine potential. Creamy soft bodied mouthfeel.
cheers
jd (525 characters)

Photo of jsanford
2.76/5  rDev -30.1%
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. (589 characters)

Photo of ShamasUVA
2.69/5  rDev -31.9%
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. (336 characters)

Photo of puboflyons
4.15/5  rDev +5.1%
look: 4 | smell: 4 | taste: 4.5 | feel: 3.5 | overall: 4

Sampled on June 3, 2011 at the American Craft Beer Festival. It had a kind of pale yellow-olive pour with a moderate head. The aroma had a hint of grape but more of a yeast and spice note. The taste also had a vague green grape flavor with a nice spicy and malty character. Overall, a beer that is worth having again. (317 characters)

Photo of SkeeterHawk
4.47/5  rDev +13.2%
look: 4 | smell: 4.5 | taste: 4.5 | feel: 4.5 | overall: 4.5

Appearance: Pours pretty cloudy at first as a Yellow-Gold with a slight orange tint. It has a large white head that stands forever. Lots of thick lace are left on the glass after drinking the beer.

Aroma: Malts and spicy hops that are very Tripel like in their first impression. The grapes aren't obvious in the cold beer. The aroma is getting more grape-like as the beer warms, and it is also getting the chardonnay notes that the flavor has.

Flavor: Clean with bold hops up front. Strong sweetness in middle. Toasty bread crusts are the main representation from the malt, but caramel notes are coming out a lot more as the beer warms. The finish is well attenuated and quite dry. Grapes add a chardonnay note in the finish and this gets more noticeable as the beer sits. There is some evident alcoholic warming in the finish. The hops soften as the beer warms and start letting the malt shine through. There is a subtle honey impression that I am getting as the beer actually warms up some. The carbonation is ample to high, which is good. Now that the beer is warm, the hops are hardly noticeable.

Opinion: Overall this is a pretty good beer. I actually like how the flavor and aroma change as the beer warms us, especially since nothing about it ever gets one-dimensional. I actually think that I like this beer a little better than the Victor, which is a little surprising for me as I typically favor the darker side of things, but this is a really nice beer overall. If you like Dupont Moinette Blond, I don't think that you would be disappointed in this beer as they share some characteristics in hops especially. (1,623 characters)

Photo of krazyboi
3.18/5  rDev -19.5%
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... (648 characters)

Photo of perrymarcus
4.1/5  rDev +3.8%
look: 4 | smell: 4 | taste: 4.5 | feel: 4 | overall: 3.5

750ml bottle served in a snifter glass.
2009 vintage.

pours a mostly translucent (there is a touch of haze) golden yellow, yields a solid finger-plus creamy white/off-white head; retention is decent, lacing is good. overall a solid presentation.

nose offers a mishmash of fruity notes: grape, lemon, apple, maybe peach... spice... a touch of oak. nice aroma.

taste follows nicely. definitely agree with the vinous quality others have noted. i think it works well. more spice and fruity notes; a bit of hops in the finish. alcohol presence is virtually non-existent. very enjoyable.

medium bodied mouthfeel with average carbonation. drink well - goes down easily - although the grapes tend to wear on you after a while. (722 characters)

Photo of JoEBoBpr
4.15/5  rDev +5.1%
look: 4 | smell: 4 | taste: 4 | feel: 4.5 | overall: 4.5

Poured into a tulip glass from a 750ml bottle.
Vintage: 2009

A - As soon as the cork is popped a nice steady flow of bubbles raises up the neck of the glass. As I gently pour it a nice 1 inch white head forms with some nice tight bubbles form. The color is straw yellow with some pal golden notes and is quite hazy.

S - Aroma is quite vinous. Some buttery Chardonnay notes as well as some nice slight tartness. This beer could be confused with a sparkling wine in terms of the nose. Quite delicious and refreshing nose. There is some slight grain and malt notes present o the back end of the nose and there is also a slight earthy hop note.

T & M - Flavor is fluffy and grainy up front with some nice bread notes. This is followed by the slight grape tartness and the vinous character. There i some slight leafy and earthy notes present as well as some nice slight funk from the yeast. The feel is fluffy and crisp with a nice light body that makes the beer easy to drink. Good offering.

D - Very easy to drink and yummy. (1,025 characters)

Photo of joepais
3.43/5  rDev -13.2%
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. (578 characters)

Photo of busternuggz
3.64/5  rDev -7.8%
look: 3 | smell: 4 | taste: 3.5 | feel: 4 | overall: 3.5

Had on tap at Toronado San Diego in a tulip glass.
Pale gold/straw yellow color with a 1/4" bubbly white head. Recedes to a thin layer with a ring clinging to the sides of the glass.
Very estery scent, with some oak and white grape, peach candy, lemon. Smells a little sweet. Nice, layered.
Tastes very Allagashy...some peach and lemon, oaky finish. A little sweetness. Clean aftertaste with some lingering estery fruitiness.
Nice light body, clean, ends a little effervescent.
Pretty light and drinkable, but something about the estery sweetness makes it drag a little for me. This draft is enough for me but it's pleasant enough to finish.
Doesn't really stand out much from other Allagash offerings but it's not bad. I'd go with Curieux or just the White before getting this again though. (792 characters)

Photo of avalon07
4/5  rDev +1.3%
look: 4 | smell: 4 | taste: 4 | feel: 4 | overall: 4

A: Poured from a bottle to a tulip glass. Had an orange-yellow color and a cloudy texture. There was an inch and a half of foamy, bright white, fairly long-lasting head. Good lacing.

S: An extremely fruity aroma of apples and grapes with hints of malt, hops, and spices as well.

T: Tasted of apples, malt, and hops up front, with a big shot of grapes in the finish. Not as complex as other Allagash brews, but still pretty flavorful.

M: A well-carbonated beer with a dry finish. Medium-bodied.

D: Not what I'd call my favorite Allagash beer, but it's undeniably drinkable. (576 characters)

Photo of dragonWhale
4.27/5  rDev +8.1%
look: 3.5 | smell: 4 | taste: 4 | feel: 5 | overall: 5

Been waiting to crack this baby..
a very cloudy gold with some sexy stains upon the glass as I slowly drain the libation.
very apparent grape when cold, as it warms, some pear esters and some of the prickly hops come out, bringing a nice balance to the nose, which remains dominated by the grapes.
very nice flavor, the grapes are used well. the carbonation grasps at the tongue, thrusting grape and malt, and some well hidden alcohol into its cavities. Medium dry, surprised this actually isn't sweeter. The finish is outstanding. This is impressive. (551 characters)

Photo of stimulus
4.2/5  rDev +6.3%
look: 4 | smell: 4 | taste: 4.5 | feel: 4 | overall: 4

Poured from a 750 mL bottle into a tulip glass. 2010 vintage.

A: Pours a clear golden with a one finger white head.
S: Sweet white grapes.
T: Tastes like the sweet, somewhat dry grapes from the aroma, overall, this tastes like a nice chardonnay (and i think that's what the brewer intended).
M: Light bodied with medium carbonation.
D: Drinks like a chardonnay, but there's a lower abv than the actual wine counterpart, so i suppose this is good for drinkability. No alcohol is present at all, even as it warms to room temperature. (532 characters)

Allagash Victoria Ale from Allagash Brewing Company
88 out of 100 based on 144 ratings.