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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 DavoleBomb
3.53/5  rDev -4.1%
look: 4 | smell: 3.5 | taste: 3.5 | feel: 3.5 | overall: 3.5

Poured into a snifter.

4.0 A: Nearly clear yellow orange color. Two fingers of pillowy white head. Retention is good and plenty of lacing is left behind.

3.5 S: Light pepper and clove spiciness. Hay, grass, and light fruits.

3.5 T: Pepper and clove again. Earthy, hay, light fruits. Tasty.

3.5 M: Lighter medium body. Good moderate carbonation. Nice spritziness.

3.5 D: Good beer. I like it.

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Photo of evlu1441
3.67/5  rDev -0.3%
look: 3.5 | smell: 4 | taste: 3.5 | feel: 4 | overall: 3.5

I picked up a gift pack at Brussels airport a little while back. It came with four beers and a glass. Here's the first review:

The beer pours a perfectly clear medium golden colour. The head is thin and frothy. I'm actually quite drawn to this one. It seems to have a nice viscosity, though I can't really tell just from looking.

The aroma is lightly fruity with some aspects of green apple coming through. This is quickly followed by a whole lot of flowery aroma. It's quite nice, and not overpowering. At the same time, it remains interesting.

The taste is surprisingly malty. It starts out slightly sweet, and there is a quick flourish of flowery hops. It quickly becomes a broad smooth grainy malt flavour that persists through the finish, with a hint of hop bitterness in the finish.

Overall, this is by no means a bad beer, but there is nothing special. It lacks a lot of the complexity that makes for a really great Belgian pale.

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Photo of AZbelgian
3.96/5  rDev +7.6%
look: 4 | smell: 3 | taste: 4.5 | feel: 3 | overall: 4.5

A - Rich golden color but maintains translucence. Small white head quickly fades to a nice film of head on top. Outstanding lacing and lots of carbonation.

S - Smell was harder to discern. Light colored fruit with some maltiness. Nothing too notable.

T - Complex bready taste with notes of slightly sour apples, and clove. Brief and subtle aftertaste has hints of bread, hops and clove, giving it a nice finish that lends to continued sipping.

M - Medium to light mouthfeel.

O - Very smooth, excellent drinkability. This is a really good beer that's not too hard to find. The flavors work nicely together to make this an easy and refreshing beer that I try to keep a stock of on hand.

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

Average Belgian ale, expected as an almost mass market brew. Aroma and taste are so-so. palate is also average. Again it’s a good drinker, but not a stand out.

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Photo of tony223366
3.68/5  rDev 0%
look: 3.5 | smell: 3 | taste: 4 | feel: 3.5 | overall: 4

From my beer journal. Reviewed in Early May 2011. Served in a Shipyard Tulip.

A: Dark golden color with a nice thick head

S: I'm getting a sweet, fruity aroma. Apples?

T: This is sweet up front with enough carbonation to keep from being cloying. Surprisingly a bit sour too.

M: Medium body with a dry finish.

O: I actually really enjoyed this. This was my first of the style and I thought it was great!

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Photo of BMoldy
2.88/5  rDev -21.7%
look: 3 | smell: 2.5 | taste: 3 | feel: 3 | overall: 3

A: Vigorous pour yields a small, fizzy white head. Crystal clear golden brew. Some faint lacing.

S: Pale, sweet malts with an odd graininess attached to them. Musty yeast character with very present clove-like phenols that are almost overwhelming. Very mild herbal hoppiness.

T: Very sweet malts with a sickly, Belgian yeast twang (banana, but more so cotton candy). Minimal hop presence both in terms of bitterness and flavor.

M: Cloying and a little too light in body. Carbonation faded too quickly, though in all fairness that may have been from my aggressive pour.

O: Certainly not like I remember it. Times change, and I guess so does my palate. Way too sweet and yeasty, which is made all the worse by the thin body. Bummer, dude...

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Photo of ZorPrime
3.23/5  rDev -12.2%
look: 3.5 | smell: 3 | taste: 3.5 | feel: 3 | overall: 3

Bought in Brussels in 2011. The color is yellow, very clear. Nice white foamy head on top. Typical soapy looking foam head. The aroma is dominated by yeast, not sure I like it. Some fruits, better. Light aroma. I bit disappointing. Taste is fruity with a very dry finish. Warm. Floral notes in the taste too. Taste is ok. A good beer. Nothing to call home for 'tho.

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Photo of Mar02x
3.95/5  rDev +7.3%
look: 4 | smell: 4 | taste: 4 | feel: 3.5 | overall: 4

A - A dark yellow fluid with adecent white head. There a some carbonation bubbels racing to the top. The head slowly retracts until a fluffy head remains.

S - More yeast than citrus but definitly present. There is also a touch of sweetness to be discovered. Overall an invititing smell.

T - There is some sweetness in the taste but mostly its a bit sour, rather dry and bitter.

M - Medium carbonation with a bitter after taste.

O - A decent blonde, but in total not much to go for. I am missing floral hops and some extra sweetness.

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

I first had this on a trip to France and loved it. I picked up a six-pack here and it's still quite good. I think it may have suffered a little bit through the importing.

It's a pale straw-colored ale with a decent head and very nice lacing. The taste is nice, what you'd expect from a nice Belgian ale. I can't help but thinking, for the price, that Leffe is a better deal, at least for my tastes. Grimbergen is good but Leffe, in my opinion, is just a little better and more inexpensive for this general price range.

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Photo of B967ierhunter177
4.08/5  rDev +10.9%
look: 4 | smell: 3.5 | taste: 4.5 | feel: 4 | overall: 4

This beer pours a clear, bold, gold color with thin, rapidly fading head. It's aroma is primarily fruity with a hint of pine. The flavor it fruity, with lemon and honey notes with caramel showing through as it warms. Initially it resembles a witbier but has a more complex, malty flavor. It has a medium mouthfeel, smooth and refreshing. Grimbergen Blonde Ale is a good beer, try it with pasta. Recommended!

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Photo of magictacosinus
4.05/5  rDev +10.1%
look: 4 | smell: 4 | taste: 4 | feel: 4.5 | overall: 4

Poured into a tulip glass from a 650ml bottle. Freshness date is listed as 05/12 - not that these kinds of beers should be aged, mind you.

Appearance: A nicely bold amber color with slight carbonation. There's a pretty, thin head throughout.

Smell: Sugary, slightly spiced aroma with candy-smelling malts throughout. There are fruity, tart scents reminiscent of apricots and grapes, which is how Belgian pale ales are supposed to typically smell. The alcohol adds extra sweetness, but is barely noticeable.

Taste: A tart, candy-like taste with spiced hops and pale malts. What I enjoy about this beer is its ability to be quite sweet yet retain a spiced, bitter end to its flavor. It's a very simple recipe for what it is, but it's loaded with these slight flavorful complexities.

Mouthfeel: Quite dry, and filled with slight carbonation with a hoppy feel. This beer is definitely more on the dry, champagne feel than the creamy, malty feel, but it remains refreshing and very enjoyable.

Overall: This is a great Belgian pale ale that can be opened for any occasion as well as any temperature. It definitely is best enjoyed chilled, but as it warms up, its dry, spiced characteristics become more wonderful. It could serve as a great introduction to Belgian beers of this style, and anyone who enjoys good beer will most certainly enjoy this one!

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Photo of Haybeerman
4.01/5  rDev +9%
look: 4.5 | smell: 3.5 | taste: 4 | feel: 5 | overall: 4

A: Translucent straw gold color. Poured a 3 finger pillowy white head with excellent retention. Decanted continually. Laced the glass in thin rings.

S: Pale malt. Light-colored fruit; pear, apricot and white grapes. Mild spices.

T: Crackery pale malt. Cornucopia of light fruits consistent with the nose as well as tart green apple. Spicy yeast characteristics toward sweet finish.

M: Light body. Ample carbonation in the glass and on the palate. Creamy and smooth despite the carbonation level that makes finish very crisp.

O: Very good eye appeal and remarkable mouthfeel.

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Photo of CaptDavyJones
4.05/5  rDev +10.1%
look: 4 | smell: 4 | taste: 4 | feel: 4.5 | overall: 4

Poured a clear golden/orange color into a snifter from an 11.2 oz bottle, with ABV on the label.
Thin film of a head that dissipates fairly quickly. Good carbonation, always enjoy the steady stream of bubbles arising from the etching in the glass.
Aroma is a very mild blend of sweet fruity esters, mostly banana with hints of spice and some yeast. Not too overpowering, which is good.
Taste is very crisp and refreshing. Slightly tart and dry upfront, but ends with a nice lingering sweetness. Very good mouthfeel and highly drinkable
Excellent lacing all along the insides of the snifter.
This is a very good belgian pale ale. Definitely worth a try if you enjoy belgian's. Highly recommended.

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Photo of theBubba
2.71/5  rDev -26.4%
look: 3.5 | smell: 2.5 | taste: 2.5 | feel: 4 | overall: 2.5

Poured a nice golden color into my stem glass with a short lived, but decent head. A bit of lace lasted until the end.

Smell was of cider vinegar. Taste was of malt vinegar and a touch of bitter hops. But even so, this ale was somewhat drinkable. The label on this 12 oz bottle had numerous code numbers but none that appeared to be a freshness date. It was purchased cold at a very reputable local distributor that specializes in all sorts of wonderful craft beers and imports, so I doubt it was bad...but you never know.

Anyhow, at $18 a 12 oz six pack, I doubt if I'll give it another shot.

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Photo of Nerudamann
3.53/5  rDev -4.1%
look: 4 | smell: 3.5 | taste: 3.5 | feel: 3.5 | overall: 3.5

Poured from a bottle into an over-sized wine glass.

Look - pale amber/caramel color, clear, with about two fingers of off-white, fluffy foam that dissipates slowly.

Smell - somewhat earthy malt type of smell, with added fruitiness.

Taste and Mouthfeel - rich taste, with a slight bite at the very beginning, but it's only very slight. Accessible malty qualities following, and ending with a gentle muskiness. Texture is smooth, and a little more on the watery side. Slight bitterness in the aftertaste.

Overall - not a bad brew at all, but not terribly complex in the taste, although not at all boring either.

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Photo of kylehay2004
3.74/5  rDev +1.6%
look: 3 | smell: 4 | taste: 4 | feel: 3 | overall: 3.5

A: star, mildly hazy with touch of gold.

S: citrus, light floral and sweet (possibly apple)

T: less citrus in the taste however still sweet. Grain and malt notes.

M: fuller bodied than most blondes. Very smooth. Light carbonation.

O: refreshing and easy to drink. Tame taste but not too bad overall. I am new to the Belgian pale ales but so far I am enjoying the genre.

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Photo of Jemonster
4.01/5  rDev +9%
look: 4 | smell: 3 | taste: 4.5 | feel: 3.5 | overall: 4.5

A: Slightly hazy honey color with puffy white head composed of larger bubbles.

S: Took some aeration to get anything to pop out. Bland/plain smelling. Some cereal grains and buttered toast.

T: Just great. Sweetness throughout with some alcohol. Warm hops and overripe fruits. Something tropical about it, banana maybe. Loses half a point from perfection because it lacks that certain "something". It's very straightforward and the same from beginning to end.

M: Pretty good, kind of flat on the tongue but nice viscosity and carbonation for me.

O: A great beer. Check it out.

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Photo of TheBeerAlmanac
3.95/5  rDev +7.3%
look: 3 | smell: 3 | taste: 4.5 | feel: 4.5 | overall: 4

Bottle poured into a pint glass

A: Pours a golden color with a spongy head that lasts longer than a typical lager; the color might be similar but a full head is promising.

S: Smells malty with a hint of fruity sweetness and a little bit of that adjunct bitterness. Not exactly the greatest.

T/M: The taste is great, though: heavy amounts of Belgian dark fruits and a bitter finish, better than the aroma lets on. It’s very good and a lot fuller flavored than you’d think.

This is the type of lighter beer people that don’t know about good beer would love. It’s not too heavy but flavorful enough to make you think, “Man, I really am sophisticated.” Because you are sophisticated. You are.

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Photo of rvdoorn
3.73/5  rDev +1.4%
look: 4 | smell: 3.5 | taste: 4 | feel: 3.5 | overall: 3.5

Look: clear golden pour with a fluffy white head.
Smell: Yeast, malts with some spicy character. Light fruits like citrus and apple.
Taste: Yeast, clear grain notes, lemon, white grapes and some hop and grass
Mouthfeel: Medium carbonation, medium body
Overall: This beer is perfect for quenching your thirst. Not spectacular, but one of my favorites from the more commercial blond beers.

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

Poured from an 11.2 oz bottle into a pint glass.

Appearance: Grimbergen blonde pours a translucent straw yellow color with a modest off-white head. Small bubbles noticeably rise from the bottom of the glass to refresh the head.

Smell: Light malts, a little white grape, pear, and green apple, and a touch of vinegar.

Taste: The light malts don't contribute much sweetness, more just a dry grainy character. Tart fruits - green apple, pear, and white grape add a fruity character. Some light spiced yeast, then some herbal hops toward the end. A flourish of candy sugar right at the end creates an interesting sweet finish.

Mouthfeel: The mouthfeel might be the best part about this beer. Smooth, lightly creamy, with a good crispness from the flavor and full carbonation.

Overall: An enjoyable, but not overly complex BPA.

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Photo of jwinship83
4.05/5  rDev +10.1%
look: 4 | smell: 4 | taste: 4 | feel: 4.5 | overall: 4

11.2oz bottle from a sixer i picked up in a pinch when there was little to no beer for sale. drank from my duvel tulip.

A- the pour yields a translucent glowing golden colored body with a small bright white head on top. the head is pretty quick to fade, and leaves behind small spots of lacing.

S- the smell is pretty simple here. it starts off with pale malts and a little bit of candi sugar. there is also some distinct belgian yeast. a small amount of floral hops finish this one off.

T- the first things i pick up on are belgian yeast and sweet candi sugar. the pale malts i could smell add a small amount of sweetness as well. a little bit of honey and floral hops at the end. simple and to the point.

M- the body is on the thin side and the carbonation is a little higher than expected. both of these things work in the beers favor though. the alcohol is well hidden.

O overall, i liked this beer more than i thought i did. i guess that since i knew it was owned by in-bev it would be a less than quality product. this will be a go to in a situation where my options are severely limited. its also something i think ill have success with when i introduce it to non beer drinkers.

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Photo of keithmurray
3.46/5  rDev -6%
look: 4 | smell: 3 | taste: 3.5 | feel: 4 | overall: 3.5

Appearance - clear golden color with some white head

smell - hard to pick up much here, apple, wheat

taste - floral hints of apples& pears, some yeast is in there as well

mouthfeel - well carbonated, medium bodied, sweet, but not cloying, dry finish

overall - decent beverage, there are better representations of the style out there, though. Try it but dont go out of your way to get it

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Photo of ColdPoncho
3.65/5  rDev -0.8%
look: 4 | smell: 4 | taste: 3.5 | feel: 3.5 | overall: 3.5

A - crystal clear light amber body with a loose frothy white head atop.

S - Dry fruity character, some sweetness, touch of vanilla.

T - Malty with a touch of dryness and grapes. A little of that belgian spice is in there too.

M - Medium thin body, fairly smooth. Doesnt linger too much on your palate.

O (D) - Fine beer, tasty. nothing too exciting, nothing offensive. I would drink this again, but wouldn't seek it out.

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Photo of lstokes
3.73/5  rDev +1.4%
look: 4 | smell: 3.5 | taste: 4 | feel: 3.5 | overall: 3.5

Lasting head and lace on top of a golden yellow brew, the smell is slightly over-sugared yeast and banana.

It's a bit sugary at the beginning and end, but also includes some nice apple, banana, clove and pepper. Sweetness is the predominant characteristic, with just enough spice and yeast to keep it from getting cloying. That said, the mouthfeel wasn't as full as I would have liked, and could have contributed to taking this from a so-so beer to a genuinely good one.

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Photo of TheBrewo
3.1/5  rDev -15.8%
look: 3 | smell: 3 | taste: 3 | feel: 3 | overall: 3.5

We pour a brew of golden yellow. It holds a one finger head of white bubbles that disappears almost instantaneously. What are left are massive bubbles across half the surface of the drink. A light ring of lacing is left around the top of the glass. Transparency is high, as no sediment is present. Carbonation looks to be active. The aroma is predominantly malty, with a wheatiness about it, and a bittering, chalky yeast character. There are also highlights of browned apple and faint clovey phenols. As we sip, the flavoring begins with heavy malts and a sweetness, of overly browned apples. There is a contrasting bitterness here as well, from additional grain and yeast. The middle progresses more smoothly, with maltiness blending with slight esters. The finish calms down even more, with the very last flavors exhibiting a sourness contributable to the union of grain additions, standard yeast, and phenols. The aftertaste breathes faintly of those apples from the front and esters, but is overpowered by that sour curtain. The body is medium and the carbonation is high. Each sip is generously creamy, and the mouth is left quite coated. This, however, disappears, and the palate continues dry to the touch. The beer would be nicely slurpable if the carbonation was curbed a bit. The abv is standard, and the drinkability is fine.

Overall, what we enjoyed most about this brew was the interesting blend of flavors. Within this style there can be an overwhelming bitterness, without anything to calm or cut it. Here we found the esters to be a nice vehicle for doing just that. The other aspects of the beer were a bit dull, and stand to be refined to make some of the flavors and aromas more bold and desirable.

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