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Allagash Grand Cru - Allagash Brewing Company

Not Rated.
Allagash Grand CruAllagash Grand Cru

Displayed for educational use only; do not reuse.

638 Ratings

(view ratings)
Ratings: 638
Reviews: 458
rAvg: 4.09
pDev: 9.78%
Wants: 80
Gots: 18 | FT: 0
Brewed by:
Allagash Brewing Company visit their website
Maine, United States

Style | ABV
Belgian Strong Dark Ale |  7.20% ABV

Availability: Winter

Notes/Commercial Description:
Grand Cru is brewed with a touch of peated malt and spiced with coriander, sweet orange peel and a hint of anise. It is deep golden in color, full bodied and has hints of smoke and licorice in the taste and aroma. The malty, warming finish is perfect for colder weather.

(Beer added by: BeerAdvocate on 04-23-2001)
Beer: Ratings & Reviews
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Ratings: 638 | Reviews: 458 | Display Reviews Only:
Photo of nickfl
3.88/5  rDev -5.1%
look: 4.5 | smell: 4 | taste: 4 | feel: 3.5 | overall: 3.5

A - Hazy Orange, Caramel color. Fluffy white head that settles down pretty quickly and leaves behind a nice lace and a film of foam on the beer.

S - Yeasty aroma, notes of oranges, prunes, coriander, and other clovey phenolic smells.

T - Spicy, yeast, fruity. Some chocolate, hops in the finish.

M - Moderatly high carbonation, creamy and mouth coating, some astringency in the finish from the hops.

D - Reasonable drinkability, probobally better with food. Reminds me of a Saison or some kind of Witbier/ Witwine.

Photo of RblWthACoz
4.22/5  rDev +3.2%
look: 4 | smell: 4 | taste: 4.5 | feel: 4 | overall: 4

Pours a cloudy orange brown with basically no head. Nose is a yeasty citrus thing with a minor spiced tone. Flavor is a bit tangy with a nice spiced kick to it. Feel is just slightly thin on the liquid and the carbonation is lower, but a bit biting it seems. A nice spicy BSPA. I bet this would be good to pair with food.

Photo of jlindros
4.03/5  rDev -1.5%
look: 4.5 | smell: 4 | taste: 4 | feel: 4 | overall: 4

Tap at Armsby Abbey

Big fluffy head fades semi slowly with sticky lacing, hazy golden pale orange.

Nose nice Belgian malts, light fruits, light citrus, orange peel, light saison like spices, light sweet candi sugar.

Taste is semi sweet, lots of Belgian malts, fluffy, semi bitter orange peel, zest, citrus, light candi sugar, very light booze, light spices light spices coriander, etc. finishes a bit drier, somewhat bitter, light slices and Belgian fruity yeast.

Mouth is med to lightly heavier bodied with good carb.

Overall great, I think the bottles were better years ago but those are long gone, but a great beer

Photo of Slatetank
4.25/5  rDev +3.9%

Photo of russpowell
4.33/5  rDev +5.9%
look: 4 | smell: 4.5 | taste: 4.5 | feel: 4 | overall: 4

750 ml bottle/batch 8

Pours a slightly hazy caramel/red with 2 fingers of sand colred head. Very good head retention& a little lacing, expected more

S: Apricot & caramel with hints of brown sugar& earthy notes

T: Apricot & dates follow, along with earthy notes & some currants & cherry hints, Some hints of vanilla & praline follow with oaky dryness. Breadyness & a slight alcohol warming are coming through as it warms. Finishes dry, warming & with cherry, oak & some musty yeat notes that detract from the taste

MF: Low carbonation & medium bodied & very dry

Drinks pretty easy despite the complexity. I think this ot really a Belgian Pale, but as it says a Grand Cru or brown to me, except for the yrast profile (way to clean tasting) , any way you look at it, yummy & fairly complex. Easily my favorite from this brewery (so far)

Photo of feloniousmonk
4.68/5  rDev +14.4%
look: 4.5 | smell: 4.5 | taste: 5 | feel: 5 | overall: 4

A solid, bright crimson, color, an enormous, full, fluffy, lacey head, loaded with bubbles..looks good so far...
Aroma: oooo, very nice! Light, airy, loaded with citrus, yeast and spice...an uplifting thing in the nose, very lively and enticing. You just want to keep it up to your nose, knowing this happy occasion should not be interurrupted...feels darker, fruitier later on, and that's very nice as well. Mmmm, a constant happiness abides in this aroma, and it never wanes.
Taste: hops grab the palate at first, then fade, and the palate is washed with a complex, incredible melange of flavors. A lush fruit factor is at the heart, incredibly integrated, a magnificent cocktail, with a tasty spicy kick riding on top. Somehow this is mellow, and terrifically full-flavored all at the same time. Full-bodied, but not a tiny bit thick, with a long, luxurious finish that resides softly on the plate, but never ends the delivery of joy.
As I close in on draining this bottle, I'm still reaching for proper words to encapture it's utter sublimity. And, still, more thoughts arise, as more flavors jut out, for I swear I'm tasting a touch of chocolate now. Is this a tripel mixed with a wit, and doused in a touch of tripel? Whatever it is, it's fan-diddly-tastic!

This is a re-review, a year and a couple days after my first scribblings, which I now refute. And perhaps the aging of this sample, from Batch #5, did something to enhance it's overpowering appeal.

Photo of DrunkinYogi
4/5  rDev -2.2%

Photo of WesWes
4/5  rDev -2.2%
look: 4 | smell: 4 | taste: 4 | feel: 4 | overall: 4

The beer pours a dark orange color with a thick off-white head. The aroma is good. It has a nice pale malt scent with the aroma of spices and light crystal malts. There is a fruity Belgian yeast scent as well. The taste is good. It has a warm, yet spicey pale and light crystal malt flavor. It goes down easy with a fruity Belgian style finish. It has a corriander taste on the way down; very nice. The mouthfeel is fine. It is a medium bodied beer with adequate carbonation. This is a fine Belgian beer. It has good flavor and excellent mouthfeel; a good drinker.

Photo of jwc215
4.05/5  rDev -1%
look: 4 | smell: 3.5 | taste: 4 | feel: 4.5 | overall: 4.5

Poured into a glass chalice:

Pours hazy orange-amber with a head that immediately descends to a patch, but leaves some lacing.

The smell is of ginger, a touch of cinnamon, some tea-leaf.

The taste is of light gingerbread, caramel/grainy, towards orange liqueur. Malty, but nor overly sweet.

Softly carbonated and very smooth, it has a velvety texture.

Wonderfully drinkable - Alcohol well-covered. I could drink this any time of the year and be happy!

Photo of Mora2000
4/5  rDev -2.2%
look: 4 | smell: 4 | taste: 4 | feel: 4 | overall: 4

Batch 20. I don't have a date, but I believe the bottle is at least approaching two years old.

The beer pours a hazy brownish-red color with a white head. The aroma has a ton of brown sugar and dark fruit, as well as some caramel and toffee. There is also a little spice and some alcohol. The flavor has a ton of toffee and caramel, as well as some cherries and grapes. There is a bit of pepper, as well as some alcohol and candy sugar. The carbonation is fairly light and the beer is soft on the palate. The age has definitely not hurt the beer, although I can't say if it improved it.

Photo of smcolw
3.65/5  rDev -10.8%
look: 3.5 | smell: 4 | taste: 3.5 | feel: 4 | overall: 3.5

Cloudy orange-amber color. Long lasting but mild head. Very good ring lace.

I cannot detect the spices in the smell of this brew. Instead, I find the classic Belgian smells--stale hay, strong dry malt, a generous amount of lace. Some darker malt aromas.

Creamy body with a high carbonation. The alcohol is really noticeable in this beer. Mostly malty with some prickly hop bitterness in the background.

This is a full flavored ale that comes very close to the traditional Belgians.

Photo of Rochefort10nh
4/5  rDev -2.2%

Photo of InspectorBob
4/5  rDev -2.2%

Photo of Gueuzedude
3.95/5  rDev -3.4%
look: 5 | smell: 4 | taste: 4 | feel: 4 | overall: 3.5

Batch #5, Sampled February 2004
A rich aroma of port, rum, and raisin escapes from my glass as pour this brilliantly clear, amber-copper beer. It is topped by a prodigious tan head that is fueled by a highly active carbonation (I am having difficulty getting to the beer in my tulip glass because of the carbonation) There are some soft spicy notes in the aroma, but it is dominated by the fruity, port, rum notes that where mentioned earlier. It smells quite sweet and reminds me of fresh grapes. The taste fulfills the promise that was given in the nose. The beer is sweet, fruity, and has a hint of spice notes. This is a light bodied brew. The alcohol is evident in the finish, though this is in no way distracting. The beer reminds me of fresh sweet succulent grapes. I am not sure why, but it does. This is pretty good, thoug my attraction to this beer dimineshes with time. At first it is awesome, but the taste fades with time a bit; the beer lack staying power.

Photo of wrightst
3.75/5  rDev -8.3%

Photo of GClarkage
4.18/5  rDev +2.2%
look: 4.5 | smell: 4 | taste: 4 | feel: 4.5 | overall: 4.5

01/24/05- Purchased at Beverages and More in San Mateo, CA

Presentation- 750ml bomber with a "batch #8" on the label. Poured into my Maredsous glass.

Appearance- Huge large bubbled foamy and chunky head. Better than average lacing and a golden-amber colored pour.

Smell- Lots of cloves, spices, sweet fruits and a licorice like scent.

Taste- Much sweeter than I thought it was going to be. I assumed more of a relaxed, even tasting brew considering it's only 7.2%. Alocohol comes out slightly, but not overwhelming. Cloves, cinnamon, dates and other sweet spices come out.

Mouthfeel- Average carbonation. The bubbles are constantly coming up from the bottom. A bit of a fuller mouthfeel. A tad thick.

Drinkability- A very nice brew. As I said before, wasn't expecting this beer to be a sweet as it was. So, I guess that was a pleasant suprise. Was expecting it to be around 8-9% with the flavors and thickness it gave off. Good one to try though.

Photo of Halcyondays
3.48/5  rDev -14.9%
look: 4 | smell: 3 | taste: 3.5 | feel: 4 | overall: 3.5

On-tap at The Bruery Provisions,

A: Pours a deep amber colour with a full white head, leaving good lace.

S: Banana, sweet malt, not particularly aromatic though.

T: The banana esters come through in the flavour with a hint of pear and sugar cane. Sweet malt flavour overall, a tad cloying at times.

M: Medium-bodied, very smooth, soft carbonation.

O: A solid beer from Allagash. Very low ABV for the style, but still feels bigger. Worth a shot.

Photo of Gavage
4.38/5  rDev +7.1%
look: 4 | smell: 4.5 | taste: 4.5 | feel: 4.5 | overall: 4

Poured a hazy amber color with a thin head that produced some minor lacing thorugh the drink. The aroma was full of spices and fruits and absolutely wonderful. The taste matched the aroma as a complex mixture of cinammon, nutmeg, coriander, yeast, citrus, malt and some hop bitterness made the tongue very happy.

This was a little thicker than some other Grand Cru's but the malt was not overbearing like some others. A slight crispness was also detected on the tongue. The spices ride the tongue long into the finish. This is one of the best Grand Cru's I have ever experienced.

Photo of imperialking
4.25/5  rDev +3.9%

Photo of orangesol
4/5  rDev -2.2%

Photo of yourefragile
4.22/5  rDev +3.2%
look: 4.5 | smell: 4.5 | taste: 4 | feel: 4 | overall: 4.5

750 ml bottle, batch #13 poured into a snifter

A: Cloudy, dark amber color with large tan head that leaves a little lacing.
S: Very rich aroma, fruity (citrusy, grapefruit), spicy (a little cinnamon), yeast
T/M: Highly carbonated, yeasty, not as spicy as aroma suggested, again some citrus, light caramel, not very bitter, very refreshing with dry finish
D: Very easy to drink and can imagine enjoying this in summer as well.

Photo of superspak
4.1/5  rDev +0.2%
look: 4 | smell: 4 | taste: 4 | feel: 4 | overall: 4.5

750 ml bottle into chalice, batch 19(probably a few years old). Pours a hazy reddish orange color with a nice foamy 1 finger off white head with great retention that reduces to a thin cap that lingers. Some spotty lacing on the glass, with nice carbonation streaming up. Aromas of big prune, golden raisin, pepper, coriander, clove, caramel, candi sugar, and spicy yeast. Nice and well balanced aromas with good strength. Taste of big caramel, prune, raisin, apple, pepper, molasses, biscuit, clove, roasted nut, candi sugar, and yeast spices. Lingering notes of caramel, dark fruit, molasses, biscuit, and yeast spices on the finish for a bit. Great balance of flavors with the spiciness. Medium-high carbonation and medium bodied; with a slightly creamy and slick mouthfeel. Drinks really smoothly despite the slightly prickly carbonation. Alcohol is nicely hidden with only a slight warming after the finish. Overall this is an excellent Quadrupel style offering from Allagash. Great balance of flavors with a high amount of complexity; and is super smooth to drink as well given the 7.2%.

Photo of weeare138
4.3/5  rDev +5.1%
look: 4.5 | smell: 4 | taste: 4.5 | feel: 4.5 | overall: 4

Pours an amber orange with a frothy white head that lasts for more than a minute. Beautiful rings of lacing from this batch of suds.
Smells of coriander, orange peel, pepper and fruit.
Tastes of the same smell with a spicey bite. A tad bit of candy sugar involved in the mix helps to balance the sweetness and spiciness making this an admiral, yet acquired taste.
Mouthfeel is good. Nice carbonation and very smooth and dry with the spiciness and sweetness resonating throughout the mouth and lingering on the roof of mouth. Superb!
Would be more drinkable if the avb wasn't apparent but a few of these babies will calm you down for the night.

Finger licking good!

Photo of Billolick
4.38/5  rDev +7.1%
look: 4 | smell: 4 | taste: 4.5 | feel: 4.5 | overall: 4.5

Pours a nice puffy head, and calms down to a 1/8 inch foam. Nice orangy dark brown in color. Lovely and smooth mouthfeel. Cloves and nut meg nose. lots of fruit and spice in malty center.Belgian yeast esters and a bit of bubblegum in the finish. Plain and simple this is a well crafted and tasty Belgiain style concoction from Maine.

Photo of lacqueredmouse
3.95/5  rDev -3.4%
look: 4 | smell: 4 | taste: 4 | feel: 4.5 | overall: 3.5

Pours a lightly cloudy orange amber colour, with a good frothy head of off-white bubbles. Little carbonation or lacing present. Looks pretty good.

Spicy citrus on the nose - rather reminiscent of Grand Marnier. There's a deep sweetness, like treacle or black caramel, but with light fruity characters over the top. Under this is a brandy/liqueur character which just deepens the aroma and adds an extra dimension. Nice.

Spicy on the palate too, hints of clove, pepper and allspice, but with an undeniable sweetness underlying it all. Finish is long and drawn out, with a lingering alcohol heat - it's a pleasant character, but means it takes some time to sip your way through it. Palate is quite dry by the end. Mouthfeel is slick and smooth. Just great.

Once again Allagash shows that they can knock swords with the Belgians, the fathers of these styles. This is a very tasty Belgian Strong, loaded with character, and an excellent approximation of the classic examples.

Allagash Grand Cru from Allagash Brewing Company
92 out of 100 based on 638 ratings.