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Grimbergen Blonde | Brouwerij Alken-Maes

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Grimbergen BlondeGrimbergen Blonde

Brewed by:
Brouwerij Alken-Maes
Belgium | website

Style: Belgian Pale Ale

Alcohol by volume (ABV): 6.70%

Availability: Year-round

Notes / Commercial Description:
The high quality raw materials make up the richness of this top-fermented beer, which is characterized by its ocher blonde color.

Grimbergen Blonde is light fruity and balanced sweet-bitter. Due to its rounded flavor, this beer is highly appreciated.

Added by Romabrew on 01-06-2003

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Reviews: 328 | Ratings: 683
Photo of chinchill
3.59/5  rDev -2.4%
look: 4 | smell: 3.75 | taste: 3.5 | feel: 3 | overall: 3.75

Undated 330 ml bottle serrved in a goblet.
Pours with excellent clarity and a durable white head that leaves fine sticky lacing.
Smells of soft fruits, yeast, light baked bread.
Flavor: also fruity and bready.
Feel: medium-light body; soft carbonation; a bit astringent.

O: a solid Belgian light ale.

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2.86/5  rDev -22.3%
look: 3.5 | smell: 2.5 | taste: 3 | feel: 2.5 | overall: 3

330ml bottle. Tulip glass. Brass color, crystal clear appearance. White froth creates a fairly good retention crown & leaves rings on sides. Citric, malty, yeasty & spiced aromas. Malty, sugary flavors & grape hues at first sip. Light to medium. Moderate to high carbonation. Sparkling & dried mouthfeel. Buttery notes, grapefruit hues & some biscuit in the middle. Sweet/slight bitter finish. Memories of Semi-dry Cava -champagne- on the aftertaste. ABV is well hidden.

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Photo of Phyl21ca
3/5  rDev -18.5%
look: 3 | smell: 3 | taste: 3 | feel: 3 | overall: 3

Bottle: Poured a light clear amber color ale with a medium size foamy head with limited retention and light lacing. Aroma of sweet Belgian malt with light peppery yeast notes. Taste is dominated by sweet Belgian style malt with a quite a bit of fructose notes coming through with a peppery yeast note in the finish. Body is light with medium carbonation with no apparent alcohol. Too much fructose notes coming though for my own taste.

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Photo of jneiswender
3.58/5  rDev -2.7%
look: 4.5 | smell: 4 | taste: 3 | feel: 4 | overall: 3.75

I had beer out of a bottle 12 ounces served cool

Very rocky Whitehead and a clear yellow body

Fruity sweet grainy smell with a slight Belgian yeast scent

Very light grain profile very sweet not very hoppy at all

Well carbonated and very light

This beer was to lager like for me. It tasted almost like a macro brew

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Photo of biboergosum
3.57/5  rDev -3%
look: 4.25 | smell: 3.5 | taste: 3.5 | feel: 3.75 | overall: 3.5

330ml bottle. An 'abbey beer', with glucose syrup kind of sounds strange. Ah, this is made by Kronenbourg, purveyors of that witbier so inexplicably popular around here these days. I do like the phoenix association, though.

This beer pours a clear medium golden amber colour, with one finger of foamy, sporadically bubbly eggshell white head, which leaves an intricate array of tightly-woven webbed lace around the glass as it slowly sinks away.

It smells of semi-sweet bready caramel malt, candi sugar, musty yeast, a muddled flat orchard fruitiness, and a mild earthy coriander/clove spiciness. The taste is more rather sweet grainy, pastry-esque caramel malt, some superfluous gritty morning tea sugar, a still dazed and confused apple and banana fruitiness, baker's yeast, lingering clove and white pepper spice, and a tiny hint of warming alcohol.

The carbonation is pretty subdued, just a subtle wispy essence here and there, the body an approachable medium weight, and mostly smooth, a certain vegetal astringency taking its toll. It finishes on the sweet side, the inherent malt and added sugar solution overmatching any lingering yeast or hops.

A rather contrived sort of feeling, is what I get around this one - seemingly true to style, but more than a bit too sweet at the same rate. Drinkable, sure, but lacking the integrated complexity of its brethren.

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Photo of damndirtyape
3.8/5  rDev +3.3%
look: 4 | smell: 3.25 | taste: 4 | feel: 3.75 | overall: 4

On tap at Hippopotamus Restaurant in Lille. Served in a 33cl Grimbergen chalice.

Appearance: Bright clear amber color. Thin white rocky head. Lots of fine delicate lacing all over the glass.

Smell: Faint, slightly yeasty with some fruity esters and maybe a hint of clove.

Taste: Nice malty start (sweet sugary flavors), spicy (cloves mostly), fruity Belgian yeasty flavors, mild bitter finish (hint of noble hops with that bitter finish). As the beer warmed up the bitterness softened further and took on some dry honey notes as well.

Mouthfeel: Slightly sticky on the teeth. Airy carbonation.

Overall / Drinkability: Very tasty beer. Went fantastic with steak and green beans. I could easily have had another one and probably another after that - dangerously drinkable. Simple, but well done and tasty.

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Photo of mdfb79
3.9/5  rDev +6%
look: 4 | smell: 4 | taste: 3.75 | feel: 4 | overall: 4

From 06/09/13 notes. Had a bottle of this on the train from Provence, France, to Paris. Poured into a cup on the train. Best by date of 03.14 on the bottle, 33cl bottle.

a - Pours a somewhat hazy yellow-orange color...it looks a lot like apple juice. Has two inches of fluffy white head and moderate lacing and carbonation evident.

s - Smells of bananas, cloves, spices, apples, yeast, bready malts. Nose is very nice; lots of bananas and Belgian style notes.

t - Tastes of spices, bananas, peppers, earthy notes, yeast, cloves, bready malts, and toasted malts. Taste has more spice and bananas to it; nice, but a little too much spice for me so a small step down from the nose.

m - Medium body and moderate carbonation. Body is smooth and creamy. Very nice.

o - Overall I liked this one quite a bit; at this point, the best new beer I had on the trip. Nice nose full of bananas and smooth and easy to drink. Would have it again.

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Photo of utopiajane
3.26/5  rDev -11.4%
look: 3.75 | smell: 3.25 | taste: 3.25 | feel: 3 | overall: 3.25

Poured clear and brilliant blonde with a white head of creamy foam that stayed well. Bubbles streaming up this one’s a real looker. The foam finally fell to some outrageous thick lace. Nose is light, positively gay with brett, Belgian yeast and some apple. Malt opens up as it warms with a little nut, bread and grain. Slight vinegar smell at first and then floral. Taste is more malt than the nose with plenty of biscuit, bread and caramel beside a tart sour apple. Yeast takes a backseat, there’s a touch of booze and it’s chewy with almost no bitterness. Finishes wet and without much aftertaste except for a very mild slick hop resin on the tongue. Very light and delicate. Goes down very sweet and has a thin body. For some reason it just doesn’t feel like beer.

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Photo of Darkmagus82
4.16/5  rDev +13%
look: 3.5 | smell: 3.75 | taste: 4.5 | feel: 4.5 | overall: 4

Poured from bottle into a snifter

Appearance- The beer pours a light to medium golden color with a rather large billowy white head. The head fades relatively quickly leaving a medium level of lace on the sides of the glass.

Smell- The aroma of the brew is sweet of a citrus and light fruit aroma of apple and pear. There exists with these smells some nice noted of a banana as well as a moderately strong yeasty smell. Hints of a lightly boozed and vanilla aroma also are there, creating a rather pleasant nose overall.

Taste – The taste begins malty and sweet with a strong presence of orange citrus upfront. As the flavors advance some yeasty and more banana flavors come to the tongue and are quickly joined by some lighter spice flavors of coriander and clove. Toward the end the of the taste the sweeter fruit flavors dwindle and an alcohol flavor mixed with some notes of vanilla hit the tongue producing, for an only 6.7 % abv brew,. a surprisingly boozy triple like flavor is left to linger on the tongue.

Mouthfeel-The body of the beer is on the thinner side with a carbonation level that is on the average side. The slightly thinner feel is actually rather nice of the sweet citrus and boozy flavors for the brew ,minimizing the former and complementing the later quite well.

Overall – This is a Belgian style blond I rather like. It finishes on the drier side with more triple like characteristics all while maintaining a relatively smooth but warming flavor throughout the taste. Quite tasty.

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Photo of Radome
3.87/5  rDev +5.2%
look: 4.5 | smell: 3.75 | taste: 3.75 | feel: 4 | overall: 4

Served from a 33 cl bottle into a goblet.

A - Beer is a medium golden color and very clear. Head is white, thick and fluffy. It is made up of exceptionally tiny bubbles, which also constantly rise in streams from the bottom of the glass. A very attractive beer.

S - The aroma is dominated by yeast esters--fruit and bubblegum. The fruit comes across as fresh pineapple to me. Otherwise clean and plain. I really don't get any malt or hops, just fruity gum; reminds me of Juicy Fruit brand.

T - The taste is a bit more complex than the aroma. There is some light malt and grain, along with grassy hops flavor. The pineapple and bubblegum are still there, but fainter than in the smell. A hint of alcohol.

M - Medium to heavy body is appropriate for the flavors and alcohol. Light to medium hops bitterness, some light alcohol burn. The carbonation is noticeable but seems smooth due to the tiny size of the bubbles.

O - This is a pleasant, well-made beer. It is not as complex as the best examples of Belgian pales, but it is simple and drinkable while having many of the tastes and aromas you'd expect.

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Photo of djura
3.47/5  rDev -5.7%
look: 3 | smell: 3.5 | taste: 3.5 | feel: 3.5 | overall: 3.5

A - Golden pale clear color,white foam lasting minute or two,leaving lacing all the way.
S - Light orange smell,cloves and yeast. Pleasant smell.
T/M - Very balanced,good blond. Low carbonation,orange in the mouth, creamy.

O - Very nice represent of blond ales.

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Photo of thecheapies
3.73/5  rDev +1.4%
look: 3.25 | smell: 4 | taste: 3.75 | feel: 3.25 | overall: 3.75

Poured into a Corsendonk tulip.

Golden blonde color with good clarity and some visible carbonation in a cascade. I poured it very gently, because I wasn't sure how carefully I had to decant it. Perhaps, the carbonation got trapped beneath the surface. Hardly any collar of foam started up, and almost none was left behind.

Smells sweet. Muscat grape, apple, pear syrup, vanilla, triple sec, and a flamboyant yeast ester. Lots of fruit juice notes. Pretty good, but could stand to be a little drier.

The flavor is boozier and not as sweet, but still heavily fruity. Not the fruit juice overload of the aroma, but estery and scaled back by a chewy breadiness. The yeast isn't loud, either. A little more nuttiness would be welcomed, but not because the beer is too sweet. It's somewhat sweet, but there's a balancing dryness to the finish that's accompanied by some bitterness.

Late spritziness cleanses the palate. The body is a little wet, just over medium. Still, carries too much of the mere 6.7% ABV in the front.

A decent Belgian Pale. Too many other solid ones out there to give this one much praise.

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Photo of Maakun
3.58/5  rDev -2.7%
look: 3.5 | smell: 3 | taste: 4 | feel: 3.5 | overall: 3.5

Light golden color, not much of a head, but some nice bubbles rising to the top.

Smell: maybe it's me, but there's not that much of a smell. Some light malts, banana, yeasty spices, all very faint.

Taste: big malts, then some yeast, cloves, very ripe fruits (apples, pears) followed by a light bitterness. Later on it get's even a bit creamy. Aftertaste has cloves and a yeasty bitterness.

Mouth: quite full for the style. Really coats the mouth and just the right amount of carbonation. After a few minutes the carbonation gets a lot lighter, which is a bit of a shame really.

Overall: not very special, but there's nothing wrong with this either. I'd expected a bit more bitterness from the description on the bottle, but this is a very run of the mill Belgian blonde.

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Photo of DannyHartman
3.83/5  rDev +4.1%
look: 4.5 | smell: 4 | taste: 3.5 | feel: 4 | overall: 4

As I pour an 11.2 oz. bottle into a pint glass, a thick and fluffy 3-inch head appears atop a clear golden brew that has plenty of visible bubbles rising throughout the drink.... There's tons of foamy retention that leaves tons of thick lacing.

I take a whiff and get upfront sweet Belgian yeast with citrus, fruit like banana and apple, and a little spiciness.

The taste is that of mostly sweet malts with a slight citusy sourness and some spiciness.... There's also a hint of mint in there.

I'd say this is a medium-bodied brew with tons of carbonation.... It has a crisp, yet slick feeling going down that leaves a sour and tingly aftertaste.

Overall, I liked it.... However, as much as I enjoyed this brew, it was not what I look for or expect from a Belgian.... Good beer, overall.... Just not by Belgian standards in my eyes.

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Photo of Twincrasher
4.84/5  rDev +31.5%
look: 4 | smell: 5 | taste: 5 | feel: 4 | overall: 5

One of my favorite beers.

A: Nice creamy head.

S: Overwhelming citrus and floral.

T: Love the complex flavors.

M: Typical for good pale ale.

O: Can see why some would like this and some not. Balance of spice, floral and citrus makes for varied opinions. Definitely not a session beer.

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Photo of kojevergas
2.46/5  rDev -33.2%
look: 3.5 | smell: 2.5 | taste: 2.5 | feel: 2.5 | overall: 2

Bottle served into a Guinness pint glass in Ibiza, Spain. Reviewed from notes taken April 2011. 6.7% ABV confirmed. Expectations were fairly high.

A: Pours a clear light gold colour. Head is four fingers with fair thickness but no cream.

Sm: Yeast and hops obscure the malted barley body. A light aroma. Indistinct.

T: Yeast and floral hops, with a malty backbone that lacks richness or refinement. Simpler than expected. No real esters; maybe some nuts. Not as complex as an abbey beer ought to be. Poorly built for the style. Largely imbalanced.

Mf: Too light, too smooth. Doesn't complement the flavours.

Dr: Doesn't hide its ABV well. A shite abbey beer, all things considered. To be avoided. I wonder how long this sat on the shelf.

**I had this on-draught in Belgium weeks later and enjoyed it far more. Maybe the bottled version doesn't measure up.


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Photo of RonaldTheriot
4.82/5  rDev +31%
look: 4.5 | smell: 5 | taste: 5 | feel: 4.5 | overall: 4.5

Grimbergen Blonde ale has a thick, fluffy, off-white head and a clear, sparkling, bubbly, golden appearance. The aroma is very much of light, sweet bread, citrus fruit, and yeast sting. Taste is similar to a mimosa: champagne and orange juice, but with the added yeast spiciness. Mouthfeel is light to medium, and Grimbergen Blonde finishes dry, delicate, and ultra-refreshing. What a wonderful breakfast beer. I rate it outstanding!


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

A: The color is clear deep golden, while the white enormous head is quite thick and creamy. Rich lacings.

S: Sour Belgian yeastyness. Some spices; mainly peppers. Malty. Some fruit; citric notes. Grass and hay.

T: Rich malts, sour and a bit sweet - white bread. Yeast and spices. Fruits; citric. Grass and hay.

M: Aftertaste is sour, while body is medium and carbonation rather strong for this style.

O: Smooth and gulpable no matter the ABV. Kind of a nice summerbrew.

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Photo of UCLABrewN84
3.8/5  rDev +3.3%
look: 3.5 | smell: 3.5 | taste: 4 | feel: 3.5 | overall: 4

Pours a clear orange with a 1 inch foamy orange-white head that settles to a film on top of the beer. A foamy curtain of lace forms around the glass on the drink down. Smell is of malt, honey, yeast, and some light fruit aromas. There is also a slight mineral aroma that comes out as the beer warms. Taste is much the same (sans minerals) with an alcohol kick on the finish with each sip. This beer has a lower level of carbonation with a slightly crisp and medium bodied mouthfeel. Overall, this is a good beer that is easy to drink but I prefer the taste over the smell on this one.

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Photo of flagmantho
4/5  rDev +8.7%
look: 4 | smell: 4 | taste: 4 | feel: 4 | overall: 4

Poured from 330mL bottle into a tulip.

Appearance: good-looking medium golden hue with a clear body and lots of effervescence. Head is two fingers of frothy ivory foam. I like it.

Smell: sweet aroma with a rich malt character and an orchardy fruitiness with notes of apple and pear. Not revolutionary but well-crafted and just what I look for in the style.

Taste: malty flavor with a light hint of some of those orchard fruits. The character of this beer really makes me want to compare it to a tripel, in which case it seems a little low-intensity and watery. However, keeping the actual style in mind, it is really on-point; really, the mere fact that my brain thinks "tripel" is a good thing here.

Mouthfeel: medium-light body with a good carbonation and a good mouth-filling creaminess. I like it.

Overall: a refreshing and tasty Belgian pale whose character is right up my alley.

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Photo of JudgeRoughneck
3.38/5  rDev -8.2%
look: 4.5 | smell: 4 | taste: 3.5 | feel: 1.5 | overall: 3

APP- Dense but low rocky white head w/ thick sticky lace above a copper colored beer. Crystal clear but luster lacks brilliance.

NOSE- The beer opens with a melange of apple, nut, banana, lemon, marmelade, white grape, pear, hint of basil, floral hop, and big hits of sweet Belgian malt with bread and cake characters. As it breathes and warms the banana in particular begins to dominate. The aroma is complex but unrefined. It is not cohesvie. I find it a little overwhelming to the senses, though it is classically Belgian.

FLAVOR- Flavors sweep over the palate and coat it with sweet caramel and toffee malt flavors lavered over fruit-cocktail in syrup with some vanilla in the finish. It would be very pleasant except for alcohol is hot and highly distracting. Minty-herbal hop flavor lingers in long finish though the beer is not very bitter.

MOUTHFEEL- This is Grimbergen's downfall. The beer is medium bodied with a slick, thick, syrupy, maltiness that gets torn in half by sharp alcohol and leaves a long medicinal? astringent finish.

OVERALL- Enough redeeming qualities to interest me in the rest of the brewer's line-up, but won't be revisiting this one any time soon. Reminds me very much of the "Devil-themed" Belgian Golden Strong ales, which aside from Duvel and a few US interpretations, I usually don't dig.

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Photo of stoutman
3.25/5  rDev -11.7%
look: 3.5 | smell: 3.5 | taste: 3 | feel: 3 | overall: 3.5

Pours a clear yellow body with a tall white head. Aroma of grain, yeast, grass, mustiness, cereal, florals, and pepper. Flavor of yeast, grass, florals, herbs. The taste was fine, a slight tangy bite with some citrus fruits trying to get out. The mouth drys quickly leaving a metalic, citrus, unbeer-like feel within. A fairly strong alcoholic finish, surprising since its a tap beer.

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Photo of acevenom
3.5/5  rDev -4.9%
look: 3.5 | smell: 3.5 | taste: 3.5 | feel: 3.5 | overall: 3.5

Poured into a pint glass. Pours clear golden with an abundant frothy white head. Some bubbles can be seen rising from the bottom of the glass. The head recedes slowly, leaving some lacing on the side of the glass. There are aromas of pale malts, spice, fruit, and faint yeast. It smells grassy. The flavor is malty and sweet with some some spice to help balance the flavor. It has a mild aftertaste that is spicy and sweet. The mouthfeel is light to medium with moderate carbonation. It has a crisp, dry finish. It's fairly easy to drink. Overall, this is a solid, unoffensive Belgian pale ale.

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Photo of rarbring
3.03/5  rDev -17.7%
look: 3.5 | smell: 3 | taste: 3 | feel: 3 | overall: 3

A clear deep golden brew, an off-white head with some lacing but small curtains.

Smelling of fruits, pears, apricots, yeast and butter.

Sweet bread, some spices, ripe peaches, butter.

Little carbonation, soft, a good body, a slightly dry finish.

An OK blonde, probably a bit old and tired.

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Photo of RodneyFarva
3.97/5  rDev +7.9%
look: 3.5 | smell: 4 | taste: 4 | feel: 4 | overall: 4

330ml bottle poured into a grimbergen snifter

a: pours a clear gold, 1 finger effervescent head slowly fades to a thing film

s: light fruits and a light grassiness, sweetness quite present as well, very light and crisp

t: a sharp crispness, more spices than in the aroma: black pepper and clove, finishes more with bready malts and sweetness.

o: a solid belgian pale ale, i like it a bit better than leffe blonde (about equal distribution here in spain). enjoyable, without being overpowering.

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Grimbergen Blonde from Brouwerij Alken-Maes
83 out of 100 based on 328 ratings.