Columbus - Brouwerij 't IJ

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ColumbusColumbus

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BA SCORE
87
very good

119 Ratings
THE BROS
-
no score

(send 'em beer!)
Ratings: 119
Reviews: 74
rAvg: 3.87
pDev: 12.92%
Wants: 5
Gots: 7 | FT: 0
Brewed by:
Brouwerij 't IJ visit their website
Netherlands

Style | ABV
Belgian Strong Dark Ale |  9.00% ABV

Availability: Year-round

Notes/Commercial Description:
An amber, craft beer with generous amounts of hops and alcohol. This copper-gold beer is a real heavyweight and a must for beer lovers. The liberal quantities of malt and bitter hops create a complex, full flavour. It starts as slightly sweet with malty aromas of chocolate, fruit and grain, while the bitter hops stand out nicely in the aftertaste. A feast for the connoisseur!

(Beer added by: BeerAdvocate on 03-01-2002)
Beer: Ratings & Reviews
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Ratings: 119 | Reviews: 74 | Display Reviews Only:
Photo of jophish17
3/5  rDev -22.5%

Photo of uturn
4/5  rDev +3.4%

Photo of rekel
4/5  rDev +3.4%

Photo of Rochefort10nh
4/5  rDev +3.4%

Photo of nickfl
4.25/5  rDev +9.8%

Photo of Evil_Pidde
3.45/5  rDev -10.9%
look: 4.5 | smell: 2.5 | taste: 3.5 | feel: 4.5 | overall: 3.5

A: Pours warm amber with a really tall white compact head that takes some time to dissipate into rather nice lacings.

S: Kind of artificial, dry bitter hops. Spices and some sour malt. Green apples.

T: Sour and a bit bitter. Malt is dry. Spicy, peppers. Yeast. Green apples and bitter orange sezt.

M: Sour long aftertaste. Body is smooth and medium, but very creamy, almost buttery. Low carbonation.

O: Very uneven. In some parts - great, in others - not so much. The good parts make me think of a Biere de Garde, rather than an Belgian Pale Ale.

Photo of sfprint
3.6/5  rDev -7%
look: 3.5 | smell: 4 | taste: 3.5 | feel: 3.5 | overall: 3.5

exp 4/12
A: amber/red, suspended bits of sediment, even 3 finger head, little rising carbonation.
S: phenols blended well with the rest, very nostril dilating, plum/apricot jam.
T: Alcohol is more promenant than the phenols in the taste, but the alcohol sits pretty well for the percentage, but the alcohol/phenol action give it a somewhat tart quality. Otherwise difficult to describe. Nice. Neutral but nice flavor. Unsweet apricot. Smoke.
M: Fairly creamy, tinge astringent.
O: Decent, with some nice characteristics.

Photo of pleasewearpants
4.22/5  rDev +9%
look: 4 | smell: 4 | taste: 4.5 | feel: 4 | overall: 4

Very hazy burnt orange color. Tight beige head that hangs around for the entire time. Some nice lacing down the sides.
Immediate first thought on aroma is martinelli's apple juice and light citrus. Awesome! Slight yeasty notes as the beer warms up.
Flavor is very complex. Sweet to bitter to light grain back to bitter. Not hot at all for being 9%. I'd really like to sit outside and drink this from a big goblet. Great carbonation too.

Photo of Daniellobo
4.38/5  rDev +13.2%
look: 5 | smell: 4 | taste: 4.5 | feel: 4 | overall: 4.5

Rich complex and long brew, quite the surprise.

Presentation: 33ml brown capped bottle. Romboid label with a burgundy and light cream design presided by the emblem of the ostrich with a boat in the horizon. Notes main characteristics, and 9% Alc. by Vol. Served in a tulip glass.

A - Hazy amber pour, towering frothy head, great retention, rich creamy surface memory with strong lacing. A looker to remember...

S - Good nose with citric hoppy touches and caramel, hint of earthy funk...

T - Rich step up from the nose… Long and complex bitterness, grapefruit, touches of grass… tied to caramel and touches of toffee as it finishes. Hints of small earthy funk mid palate with a nice fruity touch.

M - Medium body with medium carbonation, rides nicely with the bitterness leading to a smooth and softy creamy finish.

O - Great experience, extraordinary range and appearance.

Notes: Took me by surprise, this one is complex and pleasing on all sides. A tad too pricey but not too much from this Dutch importer. Thank you Toño for the recommendation and treat. (Their dark BSA is good but another beast altogether. Right now this one is the winner with a difference.)

Photo of tbeckett
4.03/5  rDev +4.1%
look: 4.5 | smell: 4 | taste: 4 | feel: 4 | overall: 4

Bottle at Cafe Belgique in Amsterdam. From notes on the street.

A - Poured a hazy dark copper with no visible carbonation. Crazy ice cream scoop head was white. Good lacing and retention with that ice cream scoop.

S - Really nice fruity hop notes and fruity yeasty esters with a hint of booze and sweet spice.

T - Great juicy hops. Yeast esters to compliment. Strong juicy hops come like grapefruit. Not malty enough to balance but it's still nice and refreshing.

M - Strong carbonation and a medium to light body with a strong bitter finish.

O/D - This may as well be a Double IPA. The malt character is more akin to a Belgian Ale but the hop character of this is quite strong and would hold it's own with some of the better IIPAs. Good beer.

Photo of eric5bellies
4.38/5  rDev +13.2%
look: 5 | smell: 4 | taste: 4.5 | feel: 4 | overall: 4.5

Pale Drank from my St Bernardus chalice

A - Pours a cloudy honey colour and has a nice tight white head that stays the distance.

S - Plenty of sour, lambic aromas of passionfruit spice.

T - Plenty of spice and herbs up front and finishes with a nice creamy vanilla booze flavour.

M - Medium body and low carbonation.

D - This is a heavy hitter and right up there with the best Belgium Pale Ales. I can,t believe i'm giving this an A+, but it is fully deserved.

Photo of StJamesGate
3.9/5  rDev +0.8%
look: 4 | smell: 3.5 | taste: 4 | feel: 4 | overall: 4

At The Old Nickel, Amsterdam.

Pours murky amber gold with lacy solid white cap of froth. Sour cherry jam and deep hops on the nose. Gooseberry jam malts, green apple esters, then bright lime and nettle tea stewed hops. Crisp, light to medium, some chew, no heat.

Interesting hops but low IBUs. Taste does not follow nose. Solid, but not as hoppy as the name might suggest.

2nd tasting on draft at the brewery, 30.VII.13 - Puffy lacey head over dark amber, a soapy nose that makes we wonder about the house yeast, caramel and a big lemon sorbet C hop hit, with a medium, smooth, very chewy body.
Solid malt backbone, with smooth even bitterness. Not the hoppiest beer from a hoppy brewery, I've had European-made barleywines with less presence.

Photo of decafron
3.93/5  rDev +1.6%
look: 3.5 | smell: 4 | taste: 4 | feel: 3.5 | overall: 4

this bottle was brought from amsterdam and poured into a duvel tulip.
pours a hazy orange/copper/amber with a big white head and ample lacing. the smell is loaded with citrus, coconut, and malt..odd but it works. spices and malt dominate up front with apricot and lemon bringing up the rear. it's funky but balanced with a slightly sour mouthfeel. best of all, it's incredibly delicious without a trace of its 9% abv. where they hid it, i have no idea. so good to see some fine ale being brewed in holland.

Photo of jneiswender
3.78/5  rDev -2.3%
look: 3.5 | smell: 3.5 | taste: 4 | feel: 3 | overall: 4

Had this beer at the brewery in Amsterdam. Served on tap, cool in small taster snifters.

A-old gold, murky topaz body and an off white head.

S-strong grain, some smoke and yeast.

T-spicy, orange/tangerine finish from the hops.

M-medium and medium carbonation

D-Very nice. Good to see something like this in Amsterdam given what is commonly found. I would drink this again.

Photo of Fizzlybear
4.05/5  rDev +4.7%
look: 3 | smell: 4.5 | taste: 4 | feel: 4 | overall: 4

L - Pours a misty copper colour with lots of sediment and lacing. So much sediment it ruined the look slightly.

S - The main smells of this beer is of sweet honey and orange zest.

T - The initial taste it very herby and malty that turns into a sweet citrus flavour (mainly lemons and oranges)

M&D - The drink is a good consistency with slight smoothness and the right amount of carbonation. For 9% an easy drink.

Overall a good flavoured beer that pours a good colour but the amount of sediment lets it down in the looks department.

Photo of emerge077
4.03/5  rDev +4.1%
look: 4.5 | smell: 4 | taste: 4 | feel: 4 | overall: 4

Clean pour in to a Duvel tulip, it was bright golden orange save for a few random suspended bits. Giant sticky head, ala Orval or Duvel. A little gunsmoke once the cap came off, and the odd smell of warm corn tortillas. Very yeasty now, a candy-like shortbread cookie dominates the aroma. Brett is present, some wet hay and vegetal flavors in the aftertaste. Soapy, sticky foam that lasts for a good 20 minutes. Fruity, medicinal flavors, this bottle obviously cellared long enough for the Brett to come out. Some dried currant and apricot notes, clover, grass, and honey/maple syrup.

Seems almost like an aged Tripel at this point. A little odd, I remember it being sweeter and richer than this. Oh well that's what I get for cellaring it for a year+

Photo of thepeter
3.9/5  rDev +0.8%
look: 4 | smell: 4 | taste: 4 | feel: 4 | overall: 3.5

Can't find a BB date on the bottle but it was on a discount rack at a beer store and the cap had some rust on the top and yeast on the inside. I am guessing that this one has been around at least a couple of years

A- Pours a hazy brown to orange with a very fluffy cloud like head. The Lacing it leaves is more like puffs of foam on the side of the glass.

S- Citrus, Yeast, Brett (a bit of an Orval scent), sugar and a whiff of booze.

T -Bitter hops, citrus peels with the white part adding to the bitterness, yeast, spices some pepper and maybe coriander, again I get a bit of brett that I relate to an Orval, which is not a bad thing.

M&D- Very light on the tongue, almost fluffy. Carbonation was moderate but body was a bit light. Almost floated in my mouth and down to my belly.

I loved this one fresh when I had it at the brewery in Amsterdam, but for the £1 I paid, it was certainly worth it.

Photo of wl0307
4/5  rDev +3.4%
look: 4 | smell: 4 | taste: 4 | feel: 4 | overall: 4

BB 20/06/09, served lightly-chilled in Tripel Karmeliet's branded long-stemmed, tulip-shaped goblet.

A: a lightly cloudy, bright dark orangey amber hue comes with semi-lively fine fizz and a very tight and frothy off-white head that lasts really well throughout the drink.
S: the major theme of sweet orangey fruits, old grapefruit peels, old leather and brown-sugary malts is backed by an assertive but not OTT musty&rusty yeastiness along with its spicy edge reminiscent of cloves, cardamom, and a wee bit of white pepper. Pleasant indeed!
T: medium-bodied, spicy yeasty, sour-sweet fruity and bready malty from the beginning, consisting of a zesty edge of hops, dried spiced-olives, dried hawthorn fruits, sweet fat pale prunes, a relatively light input of candy-ish malts and overripe banana-esters; smoothly, giving way to an enticing aftertaste full of spicy-yeasty and musty notes, chewy, leather-ish, and quite pleasantly so. The finish is pretty dry (due to the yeastiness!), partly elevating the weight of this 9%abv. For this style of beer, the mustiness might have come slightly over the average, but, by 't IJ's standard, the yeastiness here is not too messy at all.
M&D: lightly spritzy but not overly carbonated for the flavour, which is moderate in complexity and yet still very tasty. By the level of mustiness, this ale at times tastes even like the farmhouse ale such as a Saison; regardless of the style, however, it proves a lovely drinkable one that outshines many other 't IJ's bottled beers which simply are "polluted" by overwhelming yeast notes and taste, the same elements working miraculously well in this bottle!

Photo of cadenwhitaker
4.65/5  rDev +20.2%
look: 3 | smell: 4 | taste: 5 | feel: 4.5 | overall: 5

Reviewed on 12-13-2008
Bottle year 2006/02 - review year 2008/12 (almost 3 years old)

9% alcohol.... ok... where are they hiding the remaining 5%?! This is the smoothest 9% I think I've ever had.

Some citrus, no hops, lemon in the smell... this beer has LAYERS! On one hand it is very easy to session, on the other hand it is very easy to sit back and appreciate.

Fantastic.

Reviewed again on 04-11-2009

Bottle year 2006/02

I decided to revisit this beer, as it was my gateway into belgians. Now that I've had more of the same style I felt it was a good time to see how it compares.

Still, this is easily in my top 10 of beers. Again with this bottle I'm getting some citrus, lemon, honey, sugar and hardly any of the 9% of the alcohol.

I dropped the score because the bottles are chock full of floaties... I really couldn't care but I suppose that's not a very appealing thing.

Still, after sampling this I haven't been able to find a good alternative, none of the other belgians taste at all like this one. Much sweeter, sweeter then anything I've had at Unibroue, sweeter then any of the trappists. Lots and lots of honey, with some citrus.

Photo of schuim
2.08/5  rDev -46.3%
look: 3.5 | smell: 2 | taste: 2 | feel: 2 | overall: 2

The beer has an orange colour and a big flow of co2 that couses a big head. The aroma is orangepeel,yeast and sour.

In taste the yeast and sourness is strong together with a warming effect of the alcohol. It turns slight bitter toward the end.

In my opinion the beer is brewed with unhappy yeast, it dominates the flavour in an unpleasant way.
to bad this used to be a great beer. Will try again later.

Photo of tempest
3.95/5  rDev +2.1%
look: 4 | smell: 4 | taste: 4 | feel: 3.5 | overall: 4

A bottle brought back from Amsterdam. Pours a hazy orange-amber with a white head and lacing.

Clearly, at 9% this is a strong pale ale, but whatever. I also get a strong funky/sour lemon flavor that not all reviews mention. I wonder if this beer is like Orval and becomes a lambic with time. The woody, herbal yeast character and citrus really dominate with a slight earthy, peppery bitterness at the end followed by a long aftertaste and return to the citrus. For 9% and being a sour beer, it's very drinkable. I, however, hope someone resolves what kind of beer this is.

Photo of baggio
3.95/5  rDev +2.1%
look: 4 | smell: 4 | taste: 4 | feel: 3.5 | overall: 4

Bottle@home

A: Hazy red/brown with a thick white head. Some bits of yeast flowing around.

S: Lots of fruit, Yeast, Spices, Wee hint of alcohol.

T: Spices (among them pepper and coriander), Apricot, Citric notes, Caramel, Figs.

M: Sweet and fullbodied with lots of carbonation. Nice sweetness and some faint bitterness at the end to make it a more balanced brew.

This beer was recommended to me by the owner of the Cracked kettle beershop in amsterdam. Very belgian in character and a good one at that. A solid effort!

Photo of mhewes
3.98/5  rDev +2.8%
look: 3.5 | smell: 4 | taste: 4 | feel: 4 | overall: 4

A : Pours a nice hazy golden color with a good white head that leaves some nice lacing behind. Some floaties also.

S : Lots of fruit aromas, couldn't really pick out any specific ones. Some yeast notes also

T : Sweet malt flavors along with fruit notes. Some good spice flavor like coriander, cinnamon.

M : Medium-bodied, good carbonation

D : This one was really easy to drink. I didn't really think of it as a Belgian Pale Ale though.

Photo of dirtylou
4.18/5  rDev +8%
look: 4 | smell: 4 | taste: 4.5 | feel: 3.5 | overall: 4

on tap at the brewery - wasnt, sure of the style at the time but guessed correctly after tasting

appearance: bright golden body, sparkling in the sunlight, foamy white cap and an overall nice looking brew

smell: sweet peaches, passion fruit, fruity esters, belgian spices, white pepper, corriander

taste: Columbus is a nice strong belgian pale ale. The overall flavor profile is on the sweet end with an emphasis on peaches, passion fruit, white grape, and apricot. Spices play a secondary role but hints of corriander and white pepper are noted

mouthfeel: medium body, slightly boozy, spritzy feeling

drinkability: good

Photo of ATPete
3.83/5  rDev -1%
look: 3.5 | smell: 3.5 | taste: 4 | feel: 3.5 | overall: 4

Served at Brouwerij 't IJ in April 2008

A- Pours a cloudy orange amber color, very frothy white head.

S- Yeasty, a little bit of booze, herbs, malt

T- Strong malt character, some sweet caramel, coffee and candi sugar. A touch of bitterness closes out the sip and balances this beer.

M- Medium/heavy feel, not thick

D- Very good for a 9%'er

Columbus from Brouwerij 't IJ
87 out of 100 based on 119 ratings.