Balthazar - Picobrouwerij Alvinne
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Ratings: 50 | Reviews: 32 | Display Reviews Only:
Reviews by EnJeiBee:
4.2/5 rDev +22.4%
A - As everyone else noted, this one was a gusher. I probably lost 50% of the beer down the drain due to over-carbonation. Once I managed to get some into a glass I noted a hazy sediment filled deep red-brown hue and a tan head with good retention and lacing.
S - Dark malt character and a raisin aroma dominate a slightly spicy nose that I couldn't distinguish (even with the spices written right on the bottle).
T - Very interesting and complex flavor profile. The dark malt backbone and raisin flavors were complimented quite well by a spiciness from what I would assume was the ginger and a warmth from the alcohol.
M - It was medium-bodied, but severely over-carbonated
O - Overall I was pleasantly surprised by this. I didn't really know what to expect from it, but it was pretty enjoyable. The complexity in the nose/ flavor was fabulous.
09-07-2011 04:42:47 | More by EnJeiBee
More User Reviews:
3.9/5 rDev +13.7%
Among the many, many reasons to travel to Ebenezer's is the huge selection of beers Chris offers. On a recent visit, this was one of the on-tap selections. Quite different from what I expected. Srved in a tulip glass, the beer was a dark brown color with a thick tan head that left ample lacing. It had a sweet, spicy (mostly ginger) aroma, and was also a bit on the earthy side. Spicy ginger taste, sour (where did that come from?), and a little bit of orange. Full-bodied, enjoyable, but I don't think I'd want a lot of these.
03-25-2009 14:18:48 | More by lordofthewiens
2.95/5 rDev -14%
(Served in a chalice)
A- This came out as a gusher. Deep walnut brown dense body supported a huge deep tan head that was bubbly with lots of light brown flecks in it that soon faded to a film. There was a sea or racing carbonation.
S- The rich brown sugar aroma has a dry spicy aroma to follow with a strong ginger aroma that finished with a mustiness of cardamom.
T- The musty spices had a light sweetness to them with a cardamom and fruity note and a soft brown sugar cidery finish. There was a bitterness, not from hops, that grew in the finish with each sip.
M- This beer had a medium mouthfeel feel and no alcohol heat but a fizzy finish.
D- This beer was hard to get through. The spices dominated and just didn't work together at all. It was a bit like drinking a ricola cough drop with a cardboard quality.
07-26-2010 18:08:52 | More by rhoadsrage
3.71/5 rDev +8.2%
11.2oz flip top bottle. Pours a rusty cloudy brown with a slowly fading tan head. Aroma of dark caramel malt, yeast, some dark fruity esters. Taste is sweet caramel malt, Belgium yeast, with some zesty ginger notes and coriander as well. A full body with mild carbonation and sweet malt very yeasty on the palate. Finishes with a combination of dark caramel malt, has a slightly almost red wine nuance with some zesty ginger and coriander flavors and some mild alcohol esters. Overall an good and interesting twist on a Belgian ale,
07-08-2013 01:58:19 | More by Samp01
District of Columbia
3.5/5 rDev +2%
Exploder! Lost about 2/3 of this beer down the drain as foam. Whats left is a cloudy medium brown color with floaties. Plenty of head (obviously) which dissipates quickly. Aroma is tons of malt and dark fruit. The flavor is again very fruity with bready malt and caramel notes. A bit of roast malt. No hint of spices anywhere. Full bodied with plenty of silky crispness.
08-14-2011 22:56:14 | More by goldbot
4.4/5 rDev +28.3%
Balthazar has a dark amber colour and a perfect slightly yellow head. There was really a lot of sediment in my glass, but I don't mind that. This beer is extremely carbonated, so watch out for the spray when you open it. The smell is very nice and malty, with some alcohol and raisins. The taste is sweet and malty with some alcohol and fruitiness. There is some noticeable clove flavour and not really any bitterness. Lovely. Really nice strong beer.
03-02-2011 04:50:55 | More by vandemonian
2.93/5 rDev -14.6%
This smells like a cross between root beer and jaegermeister... seriously. It kind of tastes similar. There aren't many recognizeable beer tastes here. It's slightly tart with dark molasses-like malt flavors, a lot of sweetness, and a complex blend of herbal flavors. If anybody has had the Italian liqueur Fernet Bancha, this is like the undistilled version of it. I didn't get through the whole 11.2 oz.
02-09-2010 07:40:19 | More by Sallerj
3.13/5 rDev -8.7%
A brown beer with a receeding head.
Smell is very spicy, hints of ginger, cardemom and melon. A bit tart and a little yeasty.
Taste is a strange taste, at first it appears tart, but then again it might be the spices that send the shivers down my spine. The cardemom and ginger are a solid combination, both spicy and to a certain point complementing each other, but this is just way beyond the point of subtle.
The malt is limited to light caramalts backed up by candisugar. No sweetness or syrupy taste. Mouthfeel is quite thin. Dry with spices. That's it.
02-20-2009 20:57:12 | More by Absumaster
3.1/5 rDev -9.6%
Short, fat, stout, 11.2 oz bottle purchased from Buy Rite on Oak Tree in South Plainfield for $4.99...
"Driekonigen Ale Brewed With Spices (Ginger, Coriander, and Cardamom) on the front, orange logo sticker...
Non-impressive appearance was the result of a hefty pour... deep, dark, mahogany-brown, very hazy and murky witha absolutely no head-at all, and hardly any carbonation... Bland, spice-dominated aroma... noticing some currants and coriander in the nose...
Very sour, slightly bitter flavor with obvious spice essences noticeable... Certainly not a very appealing or attractive taste... more sour than anything, and not particularly strong or appealing...
Bland, watered-down mouthfeel with a poor level of drinkability due to the cloying and slightly overbearing flavors... Although the alcohol isn't so noticeable, the slightly sour, bitter, and astringent flavors are...
Wouldn't particularly recommend this one...
03-22-2008 18:06:11 | More by dsa7783
2.2/5 rDev -35.9%
11.2 oz. bottle, poured into a tulip glass:
Pours very dark brown - almost black. A one finger bubbly tan head tops it off. Eventually, it becomes a thick, swirling patch. Some dotted lacing sticks.
The smell is of ginger, coriander, cardamom. Yep - all the spicing listed on label is there. Unfortunately, though, it is intermingled with Grandma's home medicine. Sour and medicinal. Not inviting, but I continued on, nevertheless...
The taste is herbal/medicinal. This is not good. My second of this brewery (Caspar being the other), and I'm coming to think that this brewery likes to make beer that tastes like medicine that one would not willingly drink. Is this a spicy alternative to cod liver oil? This is damned near awful, well, not good. Licorice and rooty notes intermingle with gingerbread and pumpkin pie. Sour notes balance out spiciness, with candy sweetness in the mix (making it approaching somewhat tolerable). Finishes dry(ish).
Light-bodied and rather watery, though the flavors don't linger (a good thing, here). Mild to moderate carbonation. Feel isn't bad, though it misses the mark on the style. Almost helps drinkability, somewhat.
I hope this stuff is good for you, because that would be it's only real asset. I can enjoy an "experimental" brew (which, I'm thinking that this is trying to be???), but only if it works - this doesn't. Somehow, I managed to finish it (and without holding my nose and gulping it), but I'm thinking I should get a reward for doing so. I think I liked it less than the scores show. And, this from Belgium - a shame. And pricey, too - almost five bucks for this 11.2 oz. bottle. Not worth it.
05-30-2008 02:49:20 | More by jwc215
3.73/5 rDev +8.7%
Poured a deep and cloudy reddish / brown color with an averaged sized off white head. Aromas of herbalness, lots of different spices, ginter and fresh mint leaves. Tastes of tart cherries, dark fruits, herbal, and spices. The light to medium tart and sour finish took me by surprise - a nice surprise as I liked it. Alcohol content well hidden.
Notes from 5/5/08
11-20-2008 00:09:57 | More by hopdog
3.4/5 rDev -0.9%
This is the second offering I'm trying form this brewery. Like the Gaspar, this one has rather crappy label art, like it matters.
Pours into y duvel tulip glass dark brown with an abundance of floaties and a light caramel colored head that rises to the brim. It seems pretty carbonated and dissipates quickly leaving spotty, watery looking lacing.
The smell is quite pungeant and spicy. Tons of corriander, along with pinches of caramom and ginger. Also some yeast and cirtus prickle the nose.
Tastes much more porter-like than your normal strong dark ale. The chocolate malt is roasty, strong, and very rigid and it blends with some very pronounced sourness. Not unlike the Old English porter from New Glarus only it is less offensive. The spices are in the taste as well, and the ginger blends with the alcohol, prickling the mouth with each sip. There is some fruitiness in there too..
The carbonation seems to be good, but it comes of slightly watery, it is good but not great.
Overall a decent beer that ambiguously fits in the BSDA category, it isn't like most, but it is decent.
11-23-2009 04:20:53 | More by crossovert
4.25/5 rDev +23.9%
On tap at Max's Belgian Beer Festival.
Poured a dark burgundy color with a small tan head that fades. Smells very sweet not much dark ale, more like a sweet pale ale. Taste is a whole different story, just sweet malt, great alcohol taste. Smoooth, a sweet red wine. I want more.
02-19-2010 04:59:45 | More by nrpellegrini
1.88/5 rDev -45.2%
Nasty stuff!!! Looked pretty inviting to start with. Poured a dense dark brown with a medium sized tan head. About average retention for a 9 % abv beer. No lacing.
Smell was an indicator of what was to come. It smelled like bitter cough medicine. Taste was the same, a somewhat malty beer mixed with nasty tasting cough medicine. The first few sips while cold were the worst. While not in the Budweiser Clamato class (what is?) it was still pretty close to a drain pour. I'm sure an impressive mix of spices were used. The combination of them, though turned out deadly for the tongue.
Leaving the lingering taste aside, the mouthfeel was fairly rich. As the beer warmed and numbed the tongue to the more unpleasant aspects, it became less objectionalble but still not pleasant.
Drinkability was bad. I'm sure the second one would go down easier than the first but why bother?
This is one to avoid.
08-09-2008 19:24:48 | More by JayQue
3.7/5 rDev +7.9%
On tap at Max's today.
The beer pours a dark amber color with very good head retention and lots of sticky lacing all around. The nose is also fairly attractive, consisting of rootbeer, and milk duds. Sort of odd combination, but it's not bad. The flavors replicate the nose, except there's something of a burnt toast flavor as well. In combination with the rootbeer and milk duds, it's not the best combination in this moderately sweet beer. Also, there's something of an alcoholic bite in the finish that isn't working for me either. Mouthfeel otherwise isn't bad; the beer is medium bodied with a soft, long finish. Drinkability is OK, though the alcohol is bit more noticeable then I'd like.
This is a decent beer, though I can't say I'm in love with it. Too many other great beers out there....
01-09-2010 22:21:43 | More by John_M
4.2/5 rDev +22.4%
A: Poured from a bottle to a goblet. Had a dark brown color and a murky consistency. There was a big, creamy, tan-colored, lasting head. Average lacing.
S: Had a very spicy, sweet aroma, with traces of fruit and malt.
T: Tasted of malt, some fruit, brown sugar, cardamom, and coriander. Not your classic Belgian strong dark ale flavor, but still very complex and spicy.
M: Lots and lots of carbonation with a smooth finish. Medium-bodied.
D: Because this beer deviates from the style a bit, I know it won't necessarily appeal to everyone, but I still think it's drinkable.
12-19-2010 13:14:02 | More by avalon07
3.15/5 rDev -8.2%
Poured from 33cl bottle into tulip. Best Jan 2012 on cap.
Pours a gigantic tan head that recedes slowly leaving lacing. Mix medium/small bubbles. Dark brown and opaque liquid.
Complex nose: caramel, cardamom, coriander, earth, oak.
The spices are really overwhelming in the taste. First you are hit with coriander and green tea. After the initial spices you get a strong taste of molasses and alcohol, really strong. Almost medicinal. The finish is more sweet, but the molasses and alcohol linger.
Full mouthfeel, but you only really notice the crazy spices in the taste.
It would be tough to drink more than one of these due to the strong and unusual flavors. In fact this is a good bottle to share; interesting, but I wouldn't want more than a little snifter full.
03-15-2009 14:42:39 | More by brc
3.78/5 rDev +10.2%
Somewhat overcarbonated, I lost a fair amount of beer in an explosion of foam immediately on lifting the crown. The beer pours a deep, blackish-brown color with a fine tan head. If held to the light, there's considerable haze and sediment in the liquid. Pretty nice aroma...lots of chocolate malt, moderate-heavy roasted malts, and yeast. The beer has wood and fig-like smells as well. Not bad. The taste is sweet, and very nicely balanced with a firm bitterness. There's also a graininess and somewhat distracting chalkiness, but not enough to worry about. Great balance. The beer does have a hint of sourness that comes out just before the finish. All in all, not a bad brew.
05-01-2009 19:03:41 | More by Suds
3.65/5 rDev +6.4%
Botteled apr. 2005, BB 2 years after filldate. Nice presentation with lasting yellow head and a black beercollor. Nose is lots of kruidnagel that gives a blackcurrant arome to the brew, dark candy, good carramellic maltyness and a overal fresh but spicy carracter. Taste is also lots of kruidnagel, sweetish and full maltbodied, moderate bittered and quiet good overall taste. Full and complex mouthfeel with fitting carbonisation. Easy drinkable and certainly something else, well worth a try.
10-27-2005 14:21:18 | More by paterlodie
Balthazar from Picobrouwerij Alvinne
79 out of 100 based on 50 ratings.