1. Don't miss our 7th annual American Craft Beer Fest featuring 640+ beers from 140+ brewers this May 30 & 31 in Boston, MA! Buy your tickets now!
  2. BeerAdvocate on your phone?! True story. Try the beta now.

St. Stefanus - Brouwerij Van Steenberge N.V.

St. StefanusSt. Stefanus

Displayed for educational use only; do not reuse.
BA SCORE
88
very good

159 Ratings
THE BROS
-
no score

(send 'em beer!)
Ratings: 159
Reviews: 54
rAvg: 3.91
pDev: 10.74%


Brewed by:
Brouwerij Van Steenberge N.V. visit their website
Belgium

Style | ABV
Belgian Strong Pale Ale |  7.00% ABV

Availability: Year-round

Notes/Commercial Description:
No notes at this time.

(Beer added by: Fux on 03-08-2012)
View: Beers (74) |  Events
Beer: Ratings & Reviews
Sort by:  Latest | High | Low | Top Reviewers
« first ‹ prev | 1-25 | 26-50 | 51-75  | next › last »
Ratings: 159 | Reviews: 54 | Show All Ratings:
Photo of Richardp
Richardp

United Kingdom (England)

4.33/5  rDev +10.7%
look: 4 | smell: 4.75 | taste: 4 | feel: 4.75 | overall: 4.5

330cl bottle, cellar release date 5-2013

Poured slowly into Belgian beer bowl glass, slightly cloudy with a very strong head. Highly carbonated, with many small bubbles. Served slightly warmer than suggested 8c (personal preference).

Complex aroma, with honey banana, and slightly sourdough bread hints.

Complex somewhat crisp, and fruity taste, malt and caramel undertones, with a lasting dry yeast finish. Hints of spice, though very background.

Lively mouthfeel, due to carbonation, with a hint of alcohol, and sparkle on the toungue. Lasting coating of sweetness in the mouth augments the aroma.

Overall a complex, light, fruity, beer, with hints of further complexity.

I have another bottle, that is slightly older, and intend to keep it a further 3-4 months, in the hope the spice character develops.

Serving type: bottle

03-29-2014 09:09:47 | More by Richardp
Photo of msquared36
msquared36

Ohio

3.24/5  rDev -17.1%
look: 4 | smell: 4 | taste: 2.75 | feel: 3.5 | overall: 3.25

Golden color with champaign like carbonation - tiny bubbles floating to the top. Nearly solid lacing down the glass.

Strong banana bread aroma from the pour.

Banana and clove present in the taste, along with a sweet malt backbone. Slightly tart aftertaste.

All those tiny bubbles are noticeable, but it's not overly tingly. Light feel without being watery.

The bottling date is 9-12 and the label highlights the change in flavor as it ages. I tried a bottle (with a 9-12 date) about a year ago and recall being more impressed than I am today. I've seen the same untouched stack of four packs at a local market for months and finally decided to try it again. At $15.95 per four pack, I think I'll let that stack stay untouched a while longer. Not bad but not good enough at that price.

Serving type: bottle

03-08-2014 21:20:38 | More by msquared36
Photo of irishpaulie
irishpaulie

United Kingdom (England)

3.84/5  rDev -1.8%
look: 4.25 | smell: 4.25 | taste: 3.5 | feel: 4 | overall: 4

Poured from a 33cl bottle into a German Pokal beer glass

Appearance - Medium golden and cloudy. Strong lacy 1cm head.

Nose - Clean. Medium intensity yeast, apples, bruised or stewed apples, cider apples, some tropical fruit, pinapple, mango. Brioche bread

Palate - Strong carbonation, malt, yeast, almonds, banana, mango. All in all not very intense.

Finish - A little bit too much carbonation, intensity is light but it makes for a refreshing blond beer. Good

Serving type: bottle

03-02-2014 20:36:07 | More by irishpaulie
Photo of CrazyDavros
CrazyDavros

Australia

3.79/5  rDev -3.1%
look: 4 | smell: 4 | taste: 3.75 | feel: 3 | overall: 4

Pours amber with a large fading head.
Nose shows doughy Belgian yeast, soft spicy phenols, caramel and candi notes.
More doughy notes as flavours along with caramel and more candi sugar characters. A little cloying.
Carbonation seems a tad excessive.

Serving type: bottle

01-30-2014 02:02:58 | More by CrazyDavros
Photo of PolarBear3
PolarBear3

Australia

3.79/5  rDev -3.1%
look: 4 | smell: 3.75 | taste: 3.75 | feel: 3.5 | overall: 4

Drank from my Chimay Chalice

A - Pours a slightly cloudy and pale yellow colour with a terrific two fingered white head

S - Get yeasty, tropical notes, hint of banana and clove

T - Similiar to the nose yeasty, some tropical fruit, banana although a little more tangy, fairly sweet ,pepper and spice on the finish

M - Medium to fairly high carbonation and light to medium bodied

O - A nice refreshing Belgium ale that is enjoyable to drink. A little over carbonated but recommend you give it a try.

Serving type: bottle

01-13-2014 09:25:11 | More by PolarBear3
Photo of admiral
admiral

Australia

4.01/5  rDev +2.6%
look: 4.25 | smell: 4 | taste: 4 | feel: 4 | overall: 4

really enjoyed this beer - easy drinking and tasty: perfect for relaxing in summer

aroma and taste: orange blossom, clove, champagne, cardamom and slight honey. Taste also includes some nice malt flavours and also flavours that more resemble a hefeweizen.

Shared with my Wife who also enjoyed - caters to many tastes. Is very well balanced and will be seeking out again

Serving type: bottle

12-12-2013 08:42:22 | More by admiral
Photo of dgilks
dgilks

Australia

3.7/5  rDev -5.4%
look: 3.75 | smell: 3.5 | taste: 3.75 | feel: 3.75 | overall: 3.75

Clear golden colour with a small fluffy white head. Good head retention.

Slightly aromatic. Clove and touches of coriander. Mild citrus and banana. Malt is evident but not overpowering.

Interesting balance of yeast character and bitterness. Good banana and clove notes. Coriander. The bitterness finishes well.

Medium body with moderately-high carbonation. Okay.

A solid beer but it does not live up to my expectations. Good flavour but it doesn't shine in any particular way.

Serving type: bottle

12-08-2013 08:49:23 | More by dgilks
Photo of Damian
Damian

Massachusetts

4.7/5  rDev +20.2%
look: 4.25 | smell: 4.5 | taste: 4.75 | feel: 5 | overall: 4.75

Drank from an 11.2 fl oz bottle
Cellar Release: 4-2012
Served in a goblet
Thanks to Neil and Joyce for this thoughtful gift.

Pretty slick bottle graphics. It appears that the monks got their hands on the latest version of Photoshop. The beer maturation chart on the label may seem a bit kitschy, but for newbies this info might actually be helpful.

As for the beer, it poured a hazy amber color. A super bubbly and fluffy, one-finger tall, off-white crown topped the liquid. Patchy streaks of lacing coated the glass. The head faded to a lasting cap of froth.

The aroma was really interesting. Super wine-y and rather sweet. This reminded me a lot of a riesling. Muscat grape notes came through strong. Slightly musty. Lots of fruity esters and strong Belgian yeast notes. Spicy and phenolic. Somewhat smoky. A touch of citrus appeared as well.

The flavor profile was stellar. It was similar to the nose in many regards, but perhaps slightly more punchy and complex. Again, the white wine qualities were quite evident. Rich and complex with a stiff, pale malt base. There was a strong Belgian yeast presence. Super phenolic and spicy with clove and coriander notes dominating. Hint of citrus. Touch of smoke as well. A bit of alcohol warmth came through on the crisp, peppery, off-dry finish. Overall, really interesting and dangerously quaffable.

The mouthfeel was simply flawless. Super fluffy and plush on the palate with a fine yet intense carbonation. While the beer was highly effervescent, the liquid quickly settled on the palate and became amazingly creamy and smooth.

I never heard of this beer until I received it as a gift from my girlfriend's parents, and I am very thankful that they picked this up for me. St. Stefanus ranks up there with some of the most interesting and complex Belgian beers I have ever tried. While I could have opted for the "fresh & fruity" flavors of a younger bottle, I am grateful that I carried this out the full 18 months to get something that was truly "complex & aromatic." Sure, you too can laugh at some of the marketing gimmicks on the bottle but, in the end, this beer is no joke.

Serving type: bottle

11-22-2013 04:43:02 | More by Damian
Photo of RickS95
RickS95

Indiana

4.4/5  rDev +12.5%
look: 4 | smell: 4.25 | taste: 4.5 | feel: 4.25 | overall: 4.5

Blonde/pale ale...whatever. Looks like either. Similar to an American pale ale, just a spit lighter, a bit clearer, and with some floaties in it. Regardless, it's nice looking with a contrasting bright white head. The head isn't huge and doesn't last long, but the contrast it provides is welcome and it leaves behind a thin lace.

Nose is pleasant as it melds citrus, spicy pepper, and floral notes. If you take a big whiff, you'll pick up some alcohol and other esters, but overall, the nose is very Belgian.

Great taste. The Belgian yeast is amazing as it provides everything the nose picked up. It's bursting with flavor with pale malts and the yeast completely overwhelming the hops.

Not sure if they used champagne yeast (they used three different kinds of yeast), but it feels like it with its light, airy, carbonated feel up front. The spicy white pepper takes notice mid sip before the carbonation spikes the sides of your tongue in the swallow. Light to medium bodied, despite the 7% ABV. Dry crisp finish.

Overall, this was a pretty amazing beer. It's bursting with Belgian flavors and shows what a difference there is between a good Belgian pale ale and what Americans have done to the same style...no necessarily better or worse, just incredibly different. This is a great example of the style.

Serving type: bottle

11-10-2013 03:45:06 | More by RickS95
Photo of Scrapss
Scrapss

Pennsylvania

3.91/5  rDev 0%
look: 3.75 | smell: 3.75 | taste: 4 | feel: 3.75 | overall: 4

Poured from the bomber to a turbinator.

A: light gold/dark straw with a big rocky two finger head that dissipates to a thick disk with slight soapy lacing. hazy.

S: Aromatic fruits like mango, apricots and oranges. medicine. slight aromatic hydrocarbons. slight musty funk.

T: The taste definitely follows the nose. Slight bitter orange, very indistinct sour. Spicy yeasty bread.

M: creamy due to moderate carbonation. bitter melon/orange/apricot finish with sharp punch to smooth tailout. not very boozy for 7.0 % rating. Satisfying and slight lingering of bitter ultimate finish. Crisp finish.

O: very nice brew. I feel that complexity might be lacking, however it is very very drinkable. I would not turn this down if offered a quaff.

Serving type: bottle

10-16-2013 00:30:29 | More by Scrapss
Photo of MCDuhamel
MCDuhamel

Ohio

3.79/5  rDev -3.1%
look: 2.75 | smell: 3.75 | taste: 4 | feel: 3.5 | overall: 3.75

Poured from a corked and caged 750 ml into a chalice. Gentle pour builds a one inch creamy head, which fades to a soapy cap. No lacing. The beer is a mostly clear mid-amber. The nose shows sour apple and apricot, with a bit of mustiness. Apricot, green apple, white grape, and a little toffee feature, with some hop bitterness in the finish. Spritzy, light-medium mouthfeel. Nicely drinkable beer.

Serving type: bottle

10-06-2013 21:18:48 | More by MCDuhamel
Photo of REDAMI
REDAMI

Ohio

4.2/5  rDev +7.4%
look: 4.25 | smell: 4 | taste: 4.25 | feel: 4.25 | overall: 4.25

Poured from 11.2oz bottle into Chimay goblet.

A - Medium amber, pours clear...until you swirl the bottle to get the yeast. Small, moderately laced, white head.

S - Sweet, malt, mango, almost tropical.

T - Hawaiian bread, hint of tropical fruit, mild spice, slight metallic notes, banana bread esters.

M - Sharp carbonation, slick sweetness. Pleasant finish.

A beautiful bottle entices you to pick it up. The beer inside is a nice golden ale; closer to a tripel than the hop forward BSPA it is called.

Serving type: bottle

09-22-2013 20:45:11 | More by REDAMI
Photo of Fatehunter
Fatehunter

Oregon

3.19/5  rDev -18.4%
look: 3.75 | smell: 3.25 | taste: 3 | feel: 3.5 | overall: 3.25

Bottled 8/2012. Opened 8/2013
Poured a finger of foamy head on a almost clear, medium straw colored body. Looks great.
The aroma is mild overall. Slight dry grain and fruit smell.
The taste has a mild bitterness and a touch of apple with some fizzy texture. No real depth.
The carbonation is moderate with a crisp body.
A bit of a disappointment. A nice fizzy drink but no real flavor to aroma.

Serving type: bottle

08-16-2013 00:21:18 | More by Fatehunter
Photo of Teleweizen2
Teleweizen2

New Jersey

3.25/5  rDev -16.9%
look: 4 | smell: 4.25 | taste: 3 | feel: 3 | overall: 2.75

A - pours a slightly hazy marigold. Two fingers of tightly packed white foam with great retention. Settles at under a fingers worth. Leaves chunks of thick lacing on the glass.

S - classic belgian golden ale aroma. The yeast character is highly intense. Bubblegum and granulated sugar are abundant while notes of apples, pears and white grapes fight for attention. Notes of white pepper in the backround.

T - flavors are bit muted up front. Some slight bready notes not much else. Fruity and peppery notes enter mid palate. Mostly white grapes and apples. Finish is soft yet peppery.

M - medium bodied. Texture is slightly watery. High carbonation.

O - great look and nose but this ale comes up short in taste. Despite having the classic belgian pale ale aroma, the flavors just aren't there.

Serving type: bottle

08-14-2013 03:04:27 | More by Teleweizen2
Photo of Bitterbill
Bitterbill

Wyoming

3.53/5  rDev -9.7%
look: 4.5 | smell: 3.5 | taste: 3.5 | feel: 3.25 | overall: 3.5

750 ml bottle around $10 and bottled April 2012.

A- a good pop when I removed the cork, it pours a clear 24k gold, has a 2 finger head of foam, leaves some good lacing in the glass.

S- smells yeasty, somewhat spicy with some notes of pepper, light clove, more wheaty than anything.

T- lots of wheat and yeast up front, some pepper and again, light note of clove. Earthy malt overall and no real bitterness that I can taste.

M- medium bodied with lots of carbonation. Too much carbonation in my book for the style.

O- a decent brew, no more, no less. I'm not sure if it is worth the bucks.

Serving type: bottle

08-05-2013 23:35:01 | More by Bitterbill
Photo of hreb
hreb

Washington

3.68/5  rDev -5.9%
look: 3.75 | smell: 3.25 | taste: 3.75 | feel: 4 | overall: 3.75

750mL cork-topped bottle of St. Stefanus Blonde, cellar release 8-2012. served in Chimay chalice glass. beer pours golden yellow with a medium white head, just shy of crystal clear, and big bubbles rising towards the surface. Aroma is bright and sweet, and very much like cider. Taste is mild and brings traditional Beligan Blonde flavors, but doesn't wow me. Hoppy bitterness complements yeasty earthiness. Pretty dry though, I don't get caramel flavors as much of a highly attenuated / low final gravity ale. In the back there are subtler flavors of clove and grass.

overall: Enjoyable, but there is nothing to keep me coming back to this particular BPA.

Serving type: bottle

08-04-2013 23:38:04 | More by hreb
Photo of Radome
Radome

Texas

4.15/5  rDev +6.1%
look: 4.25 | smell: 4.25 | taste: 4.25 | feel: 3.75 | overall: 4

Poured from a 750 ml bottle into a wine glass.

A - Medium gold color; just a bit of haze. Head is white and thick and made of tiny, creamy bubbles. It is persistent and builds impressive cascades of lacing when the glass is tipped.

S - Classic Belgian pale ale aromas. Bready, grainy malt. No hops evident. Yeast shows as low black pepper and bubblegum. Just a tiny bit of alcohol aroma. Very clean, but not overly complex.

T - Taste is balanced between earthy, gentle hops and grainy Pilsner malt. There is some lemon-like tartness and black pepper, likely from the yeast, which are softened by light sugar sweetness. The hops bitterness is low to medium. Very clean and well-made.

M - Light body. Low to moderate, smooth carbonation. No alcohol burn.

O - This is a great beer. Very drinkable but full of all the right BPA flavors and aromas. All it lacks in my view is a bit more body and complexity, but that is splitting hairs.

Serving type: bottle

07-25-2013 03:13:27 | More by Radome
Photo of wedge
wedge

North Carolina

4.03/5  rDev +3.1%
look: 4 | smell: 4 | taste: 4 | feel: 4.25 | overall: 4

Cellar Release: 4 - 2012

Picked this 750 up on a whim for the low, low price of $3.99.

Clear gold, a nice, richly creamy head rests atop. Spicy yeast, apple, pale cookie-like malts, honey, clove, lemon, perfume-y floral notes, and light dried banana. Sweet malt, juicy apple, plenty of yeast, slight coriander, ripe banana...spicy and crisp. Dry, medium body, with some creaminess.

A lot better than expected. Honestly, I had never heard of this particular Van Steenberge beer, but I needed to meet the minimum for using a credit card at a local convenience store and this caught my eye. Glad I did...really decent stuff, especially considering what I got it for. I'd like to try a slightly younger bottle for comparison.

Serving type: bottle

07-24-2013 01:24:21 | More by wedge
Photo of tastybeer
tastybeer

North Carolina

4.08/5  rDev +4.3%
look: 3.75 | smell: 4 | taste: 4.25 | feel: 3.75 | overall: 4

A: Light and glowing, slightly amber gold. Head is nicely bubbly and good in size. Holds a 1/4 inch once faded. Lace is straggely and blotchy.

S: Aroma is spicy, flowery, bright with lemon, and there's plenty of cookies plus crackers.

T: Spice at the front here also. Sweet sugar cookies with lemon, soft candy orange, cream, apples... A variety of well organized flavors.

M: Texture is pronounced syrup with tingly carbonation. This has a fullness to it but its very easy to drink.

O: Quite a lot of interesting and enjoyable things going on here. Score.

Serving type: bottle

07-24-2013 01:24:16 | More by tastybeer
Photo of GJ40
GJ40

North Carolina

4.01/5  rDev +2.6%
look: 4.25 | smell: 4 | taste: 4 | feel: 4 | overall: 4

Sampled from a 750ml bottle in a Duvel glass. Like a few before me, I picked one up for $3.99 at Triangle Wine (and then went back for a couple more).

A - Golden and clear with a fluffy white head that sticks around for a while. A nice steady rise of bubbles from the center of the glass. Great lacing! Very inviting.

S - Spicy and fruity with subtle notes of black pepper, lemon, orange and peach.

T - Crisp and dry with a nice fruity / spicy balance and the slightest hint of sweetness in the finish.

M - A moderate consistency but feels light due to the high carbonation.

O - A solid beer and a steal at $3.99/750ml.

Serving type: bottle

07-05-2013 12:00:36 | More by GJ40
Photo of ccrida
ccrida

Oregon

4.11/5  rDev +5.1%
look: 4.25 | smell: 4.5 | taste: 4 | feel: 4 | overall: 4

750ml bottle, Cellar Release date 8-2012. Poured into my large Gulden Draak tulip, St. Stefanus is hazy, dull dark gold. The huge, frothy white head has medium-sized bubbles and is fairly slow to settle, leaving rocky foam and pockmarked lace.

Smell is pithy, some what chalky minerality with light tropical fruit reminiscent of a saison, which I love. A touch of over-ripe banana, caramel, bananas foster, but it's a distant secondary note. I'm sure it will grow pronounced with time, as this is only 11 months old from release. I like it here.

Taste is similar, this really has a nice pith too it, but the banana is more pronounced than the nose. A little oxidized, the esters are stronger and more over-ripe. Still nice clean maltiness.

Mouthfeel is on the dry side, with full but soft effervescence. Medium light.

Drinkability is pretty good, it's a solid Belgian blonde, but I wish I had had it on the fresh side, and the mineral notes hint at what would probably be right in my sweet spot of fantastic beer closer upon release. Still quite good now however.

Serving type: bottle

07-04-2013 01:53:30 | More by ccrida
Photo of katan
katan

Colorado

3.7/5  rDev -5.4%
look: 4.25 | smell: 3.5 | taste: 3.75 | feel: 3.5 | overall: 3.75

A - Pours a dark golden color. Fairly opaque, thick looking. Strong pearly white head but it is breaking down quickly.

S - A mostly yeasty nose, lots of esters and a bit of white pepper background. Pulls the Belgian card, no doubt.

T - Starts off smooth and sweet, just a little pilsner sweetness. Turns to esters quickly, breaking in with frutiness. Finishes clean and smooth with just a little of the citrus flavors hanging on. Turns very dry in the finish.

M - Moderate body and a strong carbonation. Very champaign like. A little sweetness, but not much alcohol warmth.

O/D - A nice nd easy drinking belgian.. Alcohol is up there but managable. Heavy from all the carbonation. Fits the summer beer to a tee.

Serving type: bottle

07-03-2013 23:52:47 | More by katan
Photo of Mebuzzard
Mebuzzard

Colorado

3.89/5  rDev -0.5%
look: 4 | smell: 3.5 | taste: 3.75 | feel: 4.5 | overall: 4.25

Kind of a sporadic rating on this one, but it was damn easy drinking. A 750ml didn't last long at ALL.

Poured into a Delirium Tremens snifter thing. Copper/gold pour. some haze. Nice big white head, settled to a thick collar.

Aroma was light. Some yeast spice and banana....like tropical fresh banana I had in India. Soft. Some white pepper. Biscuit malt.

Flavor was a bit more structured than the nose, but it, too, was rather gentle. Which is not a bad thing, and probably better than I rated it. The flavors of banana and clove mingled well. A soft but noticeable hop zip was there. Biscuit, almost uncooked, was throughout. White pepper in the end. A slight touch of booze.

But really, this beer drank like a session. Really felt nice and went down like a $2 hooker...I'm guessing.

Serving type: bottle

06-28-2013 06:24:49 | More by Mebuzzard
Photo of brewcrew76
brewcrew76

Wisconsin

3.7/5  rDev -5.4%
look: 4 | smell: 3.75 | taste: 3.5 | feel: 4.25 | overall: 3.75

7-2012 Vintage

A - Orange, copper color with an inch or two of fluffy white head that leaves behind a good amount of foam until the beer is finished.

S - Mineral aroma with green apple, pear, yeasty esters, fruity, slightly sweet.

T - Light mineral taste, fruity, green apple, herbal, sweet graham cracker, yeasty esters.

M - Well carbonated and crisp.

D - Pleasant but I seemed to lose interest as I drank it.

Serving type: bottle

06-14-2013 01:02:53 | More by brewcrew76
Photo of Axnjxn
Axnjxn

North Carolina

4.15/5  rDev +6.1%
look: 4.25 | smell: 3.75 | taste: 4.25 | feel: 4.25 | overall: 4.25

330ml bottle into a snifter. "cellar release 4-2012" stamped on the bottle

Pours a darker copper color with a 2 inch white head. extremely fizzy, bubbles shoot from the bottom to the top and seem to make the head even larger as it lingers in the glass for a bit.

sweet honey aroma on the nose. yeasty and bready as well.

taste is pretty great. sweet and fizzy, like drinking an extremely carbonated soda. classic belgian yeasts show through on the finish. tad of bitterness on the back end. this is a very complex beer that will change drastically depending on how long you age it. lighter side of medium bodied with high carbonation. this isnt something you chug down, but honestly you could if you wanted to. its quite easy to drink.

overall picked this up on a whim as it was extremely cheap, and am thoroughly impressed. glad i got a 4 pack.

Serving type: bottle

06-08-2013 20:29:20 | More by Axnjxn
« first ‹ prev | 1-25 | 26-50 | 51-75  | next › last »
St. Stefanus from Brouwerij Van Steenberge N.V.
88 out of 100 based on 159 ratings.