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Piraat - Brouwerij Van Steenberge N.V.

Not Rated.
PiraatPiraat

Displayed for educational use only; do not reuse.
BA SCORE
91
outstanding

2,055 Ratings
THE BROS
95
world-class

(view ratings)
Ratings: 2,055
Reviews: 969
rAvg: 4.07
pDev: 12.29%
Wants: 80
Gots: 159 | FT: 1
Brewed by:
Brouwerij Van Steenberge N.V. visit their website
Belgium

Style | ABV
Belgian Strong Pale Ale |  10.50% ABV

Availability: Year-round

Notes/Commercial Description:
A robustly bitter strong Belgian pale ale.

(Beer added by: BeerAdvocate on 10-07-2001)
Beer: Ratings & Reviews
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Ratings: 2,055 | Reviews: 969 | Display Reviews Only:
Reviews by TheHammer:
Photo of TheHammer
3.45/5  rDev -15.2%
look: 4.5 | smell: 3 | taste: 3.5 | feel: 3.5 | overall: 3.5

Appearance: Boasts a deep but not too deep orange color, as I'm able to see ample carbonation. The finger and a half of head retained exceptionally well and produced some lacing. A bit more lacing and it would pull the five.

Smell: Oddly absent, I'm getting a little bit of yeast and some grapefruit, which I'm not sure if the yeast or the hops are causing it. All in all, what's there is nice but it's just not strong enough, even with warming.

Taste: The kind of nice and fruity that I would expect from a high alcohol Belgian beer. That also being said there is room for improvement. Starts with mild grain caramel malt that explodes into kick of mix peach, orange, spice, and honey that ends with a kick of grapefruit that is underscored by a casuistic alcohol taste.

Mouthfeel: It comes across and unbalanced to me, as the start is so mild and the end is so strong. The alcohol taste near the end leaves a boozy aftertaste that I would typically reserve for whiskey. That being said, the carbonation is exceptionally well done and it does build up to a crescendo nicely. I just wish it didn't have to wait through so much silence.

Drinkability: Too much of an alcohol hamstrings it as a casual drinker and it's not quite up there to be a high class Belgian in my eyes. It went down nicely enough and I wouldn't say I was disappointed. It just doesn't quite do it for me.

Final Thoughts: Obviously warming is a must on this one, but this beer wearies me on Belgian beer, specifically high alcohol Belgian beer. I really wish this was a 7-8% beer, because it's the wine like level of alcohol that is ruining this one, and many other Belgian's for me. It's just strikes me as one of those things that great when you do it right, but has just a small margin of error that many come in as just above average in my eyes. Oh well, give it a shot, you could certainly do worse.

TheHammer, Aug 28, 2011
More User Reviews:
Photo of MrIncognito
4.5/5  rDev +10.6%

Amazing. Hazy golden body with a thick, lasting white head. Smell of lemon peel, a little herbal hop, candy sugar, and yeast. Fantastic taste that is smooth and sweet with just enough bitterness to prevent any sticky, cloying sweetness. There is a nice malt backbone to this with a smooth honey and candy sugar sweetness.

MrIncognito, Aug 18, 2014
Photo of Homers_Beer_Odyssey
3.99/5  rDev -2%
look: 5 | smell: 4.25 | taste: 3.75 | feel: 4 | overall: 4

APPEARANCE - Pours coppery red, with a huge, five-finger beige head that lasts a long time. It leaves a floaty yeast lump up till the last sip.

SMELL/AROMA - Herbaceous, sweet, a little piney.

TASTE - Sweet, herbaceous, piney. Definitely not bitter as advertised. ABV only a bit hidden.

MOUTHFEEL/PALATE - Lots of carbonation, light, not syrupy.

OVERALL - A bit boozy, but a nice beer, sippable, not quaffable. Advertised as bitter, but it's not at all bitter IMHO.

Homers_Beer_Odyssey, Jul 21, 2014
Photo of HuskerTornado
4.48/5  rDev +10.1%
look: 4 | smell: 4.5 | taste: 4.5 | feel: 4.5 | overall: 4.5

11.2oz bottle poured into tulip glass. Pours a copper color with a mountainous cream colored head that very slowly dissipates to over a quarter inch thick with some spots much thicker that remain and leaves behind thick lacing.

Smell is of sweet honey and malt, floral hoppiness, and the Belgian yeast always brings a fruitiness to the table. A lot going on here.

Taste impressively complex. Big floral hop presence combined with honey sweetness right off the bat. Lots of hops here, but the bitterness is not overly intense. In the middle comes a mixture of lighter fruits like pears and dark fruits like plums. In the finish, the 10.5% alcohol makes it's presence felt and there is a grassy finish. Mouthfeel is smooth and creamy.

Overall, a great Belgian strong pale ale. I've had this bottle a while, and poured darker than usual, but the flavor profile seemed to be about the same.

HuskerTornado, Aug 04, 2014
Photo of rangerred
4.25/5  rDev +4.4%

330ml bottle into a goblet.

Pours a clear dark copper with just the smallest bit of sediment from the bottle sneaking into the glass. Huge solid two finger white billowy head that hangs on the entire time the beer is in the glass.

Aroma is quite spicy with hints of coriander and peach along with a whiff of alcohol. Not incredibly deep but it is true to style.

The flavor continues with the spiciness with coriander but the peach is a bit more subtle. A touch of dark fruit and caramel underneath along with a touch of caramel. The alcohol definitely makes its presence known but it never becomes overwhelming. Very dry mouthfeel with just a light touch of sweetness in the end.

Overall, this is a very good beer. It is not top of the line but it isn't very far off. Love that it packs a decent punch and is not overly sweet.

rangerred, Aug 22, 2014
Photo of oberon
3.8/5  rDev -6.6%
look: 4 | smell: 3.5 | taste: 4 | feel: 4 | overall: 3.5

I had heard many things about this beer mainly good so had to try it on tap last night.Pours a gold/orange color with a big fluffy head,the aroma has big hop presence very herbal and grassy.Taste is very citriusy and tart with some late hop coming thru,very grassy and herbal aftertaste.A pretty nice beer but not a top notch Belgian in my opinion.

oberon, Feb 21, 2004
Photo of Popsinc
3.55/5  rDev -12.8%
look: 3.5 | smell: 3.5 | taste: 3.5 | feel: 4 | overall: 3.5

A lovely amber pour with a lively white head. The nose is big on candycane sweetness and malt. Very ripe and sweet fruitiness in the nose highlighted by apricot and mango. The taste is simply sweet and fruity throughout almost hiding the hopiness. The sweetness is heavy on brown sugar, honey and lolipop candy. I can't help but be reminded of Halloween. The fruits seemed toned down...or, overpowered by the bold sweetness. The finish lingers nicely and what else...sweetly. The mouthfeel was good with a decent balance between lively carbonation and a smooth, creaminess.

Somewhat too sweet for my liking but still a after dinner/sipping beer.

Popsinc, Mar 03, 2004
Photo of RoyalT
4.05/5  rDev -0.5%
look: 4 | smell: 4 | taste: 4 | feel: 4.5 | overall: 4

Appearance – Cloudy orange in color with a decent head.

Smell – Strong orange in the nose with classic Belgian yeast. There’s also a bit of spicing in there. I can pick up coriander and white pepper for sure.

Taste – The spices say BSPA. They step up big time in the taste. The yeast is present as well, but the huge story here is the gigantic, damn near overpowering, orange liquor and syrup flavor. This is like drinking Grand Marnier mixed with peppered vodka.

Mouthfeel – Medium-bodied with little to no carbonation and a respectable alcohol sting.

Drinkability – This one was creamy smooth and went down nicely.

Comments – Probably too strong and alcoholic for most. Don’t make this your first of the night, and don’t make it your last.

RoyalT, Dec 02, 2003
Photo of DaPeculierDane
2.9/5  rDev -28.7%
look: 4 | smell: 3 | taste: 3 | feel: 2.5 | overall: 2.5

Light yellow amber with a thin off white head. Carbonation is light. Smells of cereal, light caramel, a hint of citrus and booze. Taste/MF are slightly acidic, well hopped, very dry, and strongly alcoholic. Mild corn flavors are also present. I find the citric acid to be a bit much in this beer because it isn’t balanced by any strongly pleasant citrus flavors. Finishes sweet and thick. Body is full. Drinkability is low.

DaPeculierDane, Mar 27, 2006
Photo of tectactoe
4/5  rDev -1.7%

tectactoe, Jun 06, 2012
Photo of wesbrownyeah
4.08/5  rDev +0.2%
look: 4.5 | smell: 4 | taste: 4 | feel: 4.5 | overall: 4

Piraat Ale 10.5% 750ml bottle corked and caged.
Truthfully I didn't have a clue what kind of beer this was till I checked the site. Says Belgian Ipa but well...

A- Pours a beautiful golden orange fluid with massive two inch fluffy head that hangs around for the duration of the brew. Leaves a massive quarter inch thick head on the glass.

S- This smells like a triple... heavy Belgian yeast spice is first in the nose. Second is a light but appearent pear and citrus bite followed by strong alcohol fumes.

T-M- Has a very strong bite of warming alcohol that only leads on to the fresh bitter grass and candied citrus fruit. Last is a lingering alcohol and malt stickyness. Mouthfeel is smooth with the fact that the alcohol is so high in content. Slick and warming effect fall down the tongue letting it know a hell of a beer just went down.

D- Its drinkable but watch out or your ass will hit the floor. Excellent Belgian Ipa, Triple and Strong Pale Ale... in one.

wesbrownyeah, Apr 19, 2010
Photo of tbryan5
4.5/5  rDev +10.6%

tbryan5, Jan 19, 2013
Photo of Matty-K
4.25/5  rDev +4.4%

Matty-K, Dec 02, 2012
Photo of BeerAdvocate
3.73/5  rDev -8.4%
look: 3.5 | smell: 3.5 | taste: 4 | feel: 3.5 | overall: 3.5

Review from BeerAdvocate magazine Issue #26:

Certainly a beer, in modern times, that was ahead of its time stylistically speaking and was created more on tradition rather than trend.

Carefully decanted, it shows off a glowing bright golden color and a thick, sticky white mass for the head. Yeasty, hoppy aromas of ripe fruit, chalky yeast, faint mint, wildflowers, orange peel and cooked breakfast cereal. Smooth and creamy with a bitty medium body. The bitterness is there, but lands with a modest stance; perhaps a decade or longer ago this would have been considered bitter, but tame comes to mind, which is fine as it follows the path of the English IPA. Love the dry malt foundation as the mild tropical fruitiness plays off of it. A little biscuity middle to end and, without a doubt, finishes dry with a late entrance of warming alcohol.

Only a sipper after the first few swigs, the alcohol creeps up and lets you know it is 10.5 percent. Complexities don't follow the same path and some flavors are pulled to their ends. All in all, still a very tasty treat.

BeerAdvocate, Sep 20, 2010
Photo of steelerguy
4.03/5  rDev -1%
look: 4.5 | smell: 4 | taste: 4 | feel: 4 | overall: 4

A - Golden yellow, huge white head, tons of carbonation, very clear.

S - Cloves, phenolic, spicy hops, Belgian yeast.

T - Much like the aroma with plenty of clove, pepper/spice, with that Belgian yeast tang. This is backed up with a nice hop bitterness very different than most Belgian ales. The alcohol really stands out at the end.

M - Highly attenuated, lots of warmth of the carbonation and alcohol. Wish it actually had a little more body to stand up to the hops.

D - Enjoyable but I think some more malt flavors and/or body would help. The hops are not harsh, but almost stand out too much and don't seem quite balanced with the rest of the beer. Still very good.

steelerguy, May 28, 2010
Photo of Dmann
4.8/5  rDev +17.9%
look: 5 | smell: 4.5 | taste: 5 | feel: 5 | overall: 4.5

A outstanding beer from top to bottom. This one poured a very nice golden color with a huge pillowy white head that stuck to my glass till the last drop. The smell was good with a touch of grass, a hint of pepper and a bit of bready yeast. The taste was exceptional with a nice sweet, not overly thick maltiness to start out with, followed by a very nice peppery flavor mixed slight hops and finnished with a great fruity aftertaste that was made up of a great pinnapple flavor. At 10.5% this is one to sip and savor for sure. Very highly recommended.

Dmann, Oct 31, 2004
Photo of TjNahigian
1/5  rDev -75.4%

TjNahigian, Sep 01, 2014
Photo of danthehopslamman
4/5  rDev -1.7%

danthehopslamman, Aug 17, 2013
Photo of sellmeagod
3.65/5  rDev -10.3%
look: 3.5 | smell: 4 | taste: 3.5 | feel: 4 | overall: 3.5

A real pirate's belgian brew!

It is a powerful ale, made to get you twisted quickly at 10.5 abv. And the sweet taste and inviting smell will make you get in over your head before you can even think that this is a beer to drink slowly.

Nothing lingers too long in the aftertaste, and it is a bit strong to be drinking all night, and it may lose points on originality. But for a hearty, manly beer that gets it all done right: I'm going to go to this one regularly.

sellmeagod, Sep 13, 2010
Photo of freshflesh
4.5/5  rDev +10.6%

freshflesh, Nov 27, 2013
Photo of SD-Alefan
4.25/5  rDev +4.4%

SD-Alefan, Apr 30, 2014
Photo of csmartin6
3.75/5  rDev -7.9%

csmartin6, Jan 19, 2014
Photo of DWolf
4.25/5  rDev +4.4%

DWolf, Jan 01, 2013
Photo of Todd
4.7/5  rDev +15.5%
look: 4 | smell: 4 | taste: 5 | feel: 4.5 | overall: 5

330ml brown bottle.

Pours a hazy amber topped with a massive white foam head. Great lace and retention. Faint malty sweetness in the aroma with some grass and soft white pepper. Flavours are big on this one! Huge malt profile of sweet malts with a massive honey-like character and notes of tropical and candied fruits. Alcohol rips the palate with warmth and a sting of spice, then gives way to a smooth grassy bitterness and big dose of pepper. Prickly carbonation accentuates with a sharp edge. Some sappy pine notes lurk. Dirty yeast in the finish with a tea-like flavour, spice and lingering alcohol fumes on the palate.

One of my favourites. The incredibly bold flavours and massive alcohol warmth always makes this an enjoyable beer.

Todd, Oct 16, 2003
Photo of SamuraiJack
3.05/5  rDev -25.1%
look: 4.5 | smell: 2 | taste: 3.5 | feel: 4.5 | overall: 2

I truly love Belgian Tripels. They are incredible beers. I love the style, I love the uniqueness, I love everything about them (except, perhaps, the price). I though I'd never find a Tripel I didn't like. Well... I stand corrected.

First pour shows a gorgeous beer in the classic Tripel style. Fabulous golden honey body with amber and orange highlights, noticable floaters and a thick and rocky head.

Then... the aroma. What can I say - the first thing I thought was "dirty socks." The second was "funky over-ripe cheese." The smell is just - wrong to me. And damn is that smell strong. Yeah, I know it's the yeast, I know it's the style - just like I know that gorgonzola is supposed to smell like sweat socks aged in cheese. None the less... I don't find it appetizing to say the least.

First taste, well... to be honest on my first taste I simply couldn't get past the smell. So I then tried to taste it while holding my nose. When I did this - I found an interesting Tripel with a slightly thick and oily mouthfeel, solid fruits riding a good foundation of grains and an undercurrent of funky yeast - and culminating with strong vaporous alcohols. Tasting it while not holding my nose brought out the funky yeast flavors and made it nearly impossible to taste anything else other than the finishing alcohol heat.

Coulda been a contenda.

SamuraiJack, May 03, 2003
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Piraat from Brouwerij Van Steenberge N.V.
91 out of 100 based on 2,055 ratings.