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Witches' Brew - Brouwerij Van Steenberge N.V.

Not Rated.
Witches' BrewWitches' Brew

Educational use only; do not reuse.
BA SCORE
87
very good

220 Ratings
THE BROS
-
no score

(send 'em beer!)
Ratings: 220
Reviews: 118
rAvg: 3.87
pDev: 11.37%
Wants: 12
Gots: 21 | FT: 0
Brewed by:
Brouwerij Van Steenberge N.V. visit their website
Belgium

Style | ABV
Tripel |  9.30% ABV

Availability: Fall

Notes & Commercial Description:
Beer added by: Beerbuddha on 10-17-2007

No notes at this time.
Beer: Ratings & Reviews
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Ratings: 220 | Reviews: 118 | Display Reviews Only:
Photo of JMS1512
4/5  rDev +3.4%

Photo of harpus
3.75/5  rDev -3.1%

Photo of Phyl21ca
3.8/5  rDev -1.8%
look: 4.5 | smell: 3.75 | taste: 3.75 | feel: 3.75 | overall: 3.75

Bottle: Poured a hazy bright golden color ale with a super large foamy head with good retention and some great lacing. Aroma of fruity ester with peppery yeast and sweet Belgian style malt notes are quite nice. Taste is a mix between some fruity ester and peppery yeast with some rustic Belgian malt notes with light residual candi sugar notes. Body is fuller then average with good carbonation and no apparent alcohol. Well brewed and enjoyable without re-writing the style.

Photo of djrn2
3.75/5  rDev -3.1%

Photo of Molson2000
3.5/5  rDev -9.6%

Photo of KrisDLSmith
4/5  rDev +3.4%

Photo of ThinkAgain
3.5/5  rDev -9.6%

Photo of andysk
4.5/5  rDev +16.3%

Photo of DonDonLongJohn
4/5  rDev +3.4%

Photo of Heathbrook
3/5  rDev -22.5%

Photo of DerwinWentworth
3.75/5  rDev -3.1%

Photo of freduardo
3.75/5  rDev -3.1%

Photo of DaveHack
4/5  rDev +3.4%

Photo of AmazingSquirrel
4.25/5  rDev +9.8%

Photo of andrenaline
4/5  rDev +3.4%
look: 4 | smell: 4 | taste: 4 | feel: 4 | overall: 4

A - Pours a clear golden colour, two thumbs of big bubbled head with solid retention and some chunky sporadic lacing.

S - Sweet cloves and yeast esthers, hints of mandarin amidst bready malt notes, and a touch of citrus hops on the finish.

T - Fruity cloves and sweet yeast notes dominate, some sour caramel and sourdough bread come through alongside a hint of ABV sweetness and a touch of citrus hop bitterness that lingers on the finish.

M - Lighter bodied ale that fills the mouth, goes down a tad prickly, but finishes nice and wet.

O - Insanely drinkable 9+% tripel that offers up a solid flavour profile and is a nicely balanced offering. I think I might grab myself a few extra bottles before they run out because I really enjoyed this one.

Photo of hotsudge
3.75/5  rDev -3.1%

Photo of TerryW
3.09/5  rDev -20.2%
look: 4.5 | smell: 3 | taste: 3 | feel: 3 | overall: 3

Looks great, after that it's rather run-of-the-mill.

Monster big fluffy head that lives forever. Big and chunky pretty much all the way down. Clear golden orange colour.

Nose is fairly sweet and fruity. Has a touch of the Belgian about it. Also sweet and malty to taste. Noticeable alcohol and yeast, a touch of spice.

Photo of liamt07
4.06/5  rDev +4.9%
look: 5 | smell: 4 | taste: 4 | feel: 4 | overall: 4

Bottle from the LCBO, 750ml into a tulip. Best before August 13/14.

Clear golden orange, gargantuan white head that sticks around for days. Obligatory lacing and chunks of retention. Nose has some light hopping, a hit her ak with some faint citrus. And a good bit of spice from the yeast. Taste has some hops upfront, moderately sweet malt and finishes with some light fleshed fruits and bitterness. Some sweet gum/chewy candy as well. Alcohol is moderate to minimal, medium full feel and despite the massive apparent carbonation is quite low on the palate. A nice Belgian pale/tripel.

Photo of biegaman
3.83/5  rDev -1%
look: 4 | smell: 4 | taste: 3.75 | feel: 3.75 | overall: 3.75

Though I'd love nothing more than to make some kind of spooky reference, Witches Brew legitimately looks like it belongs around the neck of an Olympian. Polished and golden, the beer sports perfect clarity and athletic bubbles. Tripels characteristically look light compared to the huge strain put on them by a heavily weighted head, but this offering is modestly carbonated.

The aroma has the prescribed amounts of sweet cereal grain, fruity esters, and floral phenols, but while it meets quotas, it far from exceeds them. Tripels are notoriously perfumed, so while this has a relatively heightened level of aromatics, it's actually fairly underwhelming given the style. That said there is a faint note of vanilla cupcake that persuaded me to up the score.

The mouthfeel showcases a much more pronounced mineral presence than is typical for tripels (or Belgian ales on the whole for that matter). It's like calcium or magnesium or who knows what mineral gives an almost 'salty' and definitively chlorine-like tinge. It is awfully bare too and drinks with a coarse graininess and occasional hiccups of unchecked alcohol. Should be less 'raw' and offer more complexity.

Despite cereal notes of wheat and oat, the flavour procures a subtle banana cream-like taste and vague traces of vanilla. There is a slight grassiness and iron salts (or whatever mineral) that really impress on the palate as well. Also, an old book-like mustiness. This has nowhere near the ageworthy structure of the highest-rated brands nor does it pack the high-flying dynamics, but it's certainly very palatable.

Brouwerij Van Steenberge has a long history of underwhelming me and, indeed, Witches Brew is far from bewitching (sorry, I couldn't resist the pun). While it makes a perfectly serviceable strong golden ale, it doesn't touch Belgium's best tripels. The fact that similar, better beers can be more easily found at similar price points makes this hard to recommend, though fans of the style should be able to justify the pickup.

Photo of Digimaika2
3.7/5  rDev -4.4%
look: 4 | smell: 4 | taste: 3.5 | feel: 4 | overall: 3.5

(4.0) A: Hazy golden colour with a tall and large-bubbled foam head. Very good retention and outstanding lacing down the glass as this one really clings.

(4.0) S: Wheat grass, banana, apricot, pineapple, cloves, bubblegum, and cotton candy. Solid mix of aromas with a noticeable sugary candy aroma that is pleasing to the nose. Have to dig a little bit to find some of the aromas but they are inviting when found.

(3.5) T: Similar to aroma with quite a dominant sweet taste and less of a focus on the bitter and dry qualities. Very ripe banana and sugary bubblegum are examples of the sweet with the grasses presenting some contrasting bittering qualities. Perhaps a little too focused and not all that dynamic in the taste profile, nonetheless still very tasty.

(4.0) M: Medium bodied with a moderate-high carbonation. Solid oily texture with a bit of grainy chewiness.

(3.5) D: Glad I had an opportunity to try this. Not as varied in the taste profile as I would prefer but still a solid Tripel and one that I would recommend trying.

Photo of Treb0R
3.5/5  rDev -9.6%

Photo of peensteen
4/5  rDev +3.4%
look: 4 | smell: 4 | taste: 4 | feel: 4 | overall: 4

Golden honey colour, 3 fingers worth of big fluffy white head, nice lace all the way down. Smell is fairly fruity, spicy belgian yeast, grassy hops, green apple and some bubble gum with a faint bit of alcohol. Taste is of green apple, fruity and a bit of spice as well, a little bit of spice, lightly sweet, medium hop bitterness, drying in the finish. Fairly high dry carbonation, medium body, good feel. Quite the nice Tripel, not terribly complex but still rather enjoyable.

Photo of jrenihan
3.91/5  rDev +1%
look: 4.5 | smell: 3.5 | taste: 4 | feel: 4 | overall: 4

BB August 13, 2014.

Beer is golden coloured with a very large white head. Very good retention, head stays forever. Lots of lace.

Smell is a bit faint. Belgian yeast, a bit of spice. Some dry fruit scents, apple and pear.

Taste contains Belgian yeast, white pepper, banana, bready malt and peach. Moderately sweet, with alcohol noticeable but not overly so. A bit creamy, with a honey flavour. Good, but nothing exciting or particularly noteworthy.

Full bodied, highly carbonated, very active in the mouth.

Overall, a very solid tripel. Nice beer, but certainly not one of the greats.

Photo of WeissBoy
3.75/5  rDev -3.1%

Photo of Hellpop65
3.25/5  rDev -16%

Witches' Brew from Brouwerij Van Steenberge N.V.
87 out of 100 based on 220 ratings.