Gaspar Ale - Picobrouwerij Alvinne

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Gaspar AleGaspar Ale

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BA SCORE
82
good

106 Reviews
THE BROS
80
good

(Read More)
Reviews: 106
Hads: 154
rAvg: 3.61
pDev: 14.68%
Wants: 6
Gots: 4 | FT: 0
Brewed by:
Picobrouwerij Alvinne visit their website
Belgium

Style | ABV
Belgian IPA |  8.00% ABV

Availability: Year-round

Notes & Commercial Description:
Beer added by: horndecker on 07-05-2007

No notes at this time.
Beer: Reviews & Ratings
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Reviews: 106 | Hads: 154
Photo of Antilochus
4.46/5  rDev +23.5%
look: 5 | smell: 4 | taste: 4.5 | feel: 5 | overall: 4.5

Enjoyed on

VLAAMSVEST '08

at the Delirium Cafe in Brussel. Orange hazy body under a solid 5cm soapy white head. Aromas of fresh hop oil (Cascade?), pine needles, caramel. Ultra-fluffy mouthfeel, really something here. Caramel, pine, mildly stinging from abv but really easy drinking and malt presence is reminiscent of English ales. Highly recommended. (354 characters)

Photo of chefboy812
4.42/5  rDev +22.4%
look: 3.5 | smell: 4 | taste: 4.5 | feel: 4.5 | overall: 5

poured a dull hazy toffee brown. nice off-white foamy head. It hangs for a long while then fades to a thick cream that hangs almost to the end of the glass.

spicey citrusy with big tart yeast notes. tart cherries and crab apples play though.

very tart start and a great hops bite that makes me taste lemon and lime. good crisp malt biscuit.
good yeast and farminess permiates throughout.

nice and chewy good tart pucker that is held in check by the malts. not too sweet .

fantastic hoppy belgian, not as refined as hoblon, but I kinda like how wild it is. I will buy more and expeiement with age on them. (609 characters)

Photo of roan22
4.4/5  rDev +21.9%
look: 4 | smell: 4 | taste: 5 | feel: 4 | overall: 4

This is my favorite "belgian ipa" to boot. I know nothing about the brewery. The label on this bottle has a camel on it, and it states it is the hoppiest beer in Belgium, with an IBU of 115!

This beer is extremely well brewed because normally such a high IBU number connotates a little unbalance [DIPA]. Gaspar Ale is brewed with hallertau, saaz and golding hops which are european, and explain how this hybrid beer works. There is a nice tripel fragrance and color, and some of that crazy belgian foam..a little of the traditional belgian funk taste but the hops definitely finish first. There is a nice spiciness as well. Gaspar Ale is a beer that I could drink many of. Cheers and to all european brewers...keep experimenting with hops and sending the ales to the states where we love them!! (796 characters)

Photo of mikesgroove
4.38/5  rDev +21.3%
look: 4.5 | smell: 4 | taste: 4.5 | feel: 4.5 | overall: 4.5

375ml bottle poured into a gold rimmed Brooklyn Flute

A – Poured a very very active and extremely fizzy burnt amber color with a huge head of white foamy lace that was soo big it had to be poured at least four times before it all settled down into the glass. The frothy top never fully settled down and there were copious amounts of lace present throughout the entire session and this really gave it quite a full appearance. Very active and lively carbonation could be seen streaming up towards the top constantly refreshing the large amounts of foam already there. I could tell this was going to be an interesting one for sure.

S – The aroma was full of yeast and spice with a very nice light fruit vibe coming off of it. Lots of peaches and pears were readily apparent and easily transferred the aroma into one of a nice Belgian pale. There was a large amount of hops present on the nose as well, what seemed like citrus like west coast hops to be exact really punctuated an already significant looking brew. A touch of alcohol was present hidden under all of this as well but it served more to round out then to distract.

T – The flavor was very full and very different. First thing I noticed was the huge hoppy flavor coming off of it. This was easily recognizable and made a nice overall introduction. As you worked past that some nice fruity flavors worked their way in, lots of peaches and pears, apples and a touch of orange, probably coriander starting to break through. A good amount of yeast gave way to a nice dry hoppy finish that was accented by some grape like flavors in the end. Very nice and light with a touch of alcohol mixed in to let you know this had a bit of a punch to it.

M – Very nice light body with huge amounts of carbonation really let it pop a bit when you started to sip on it. There was a certain amount of smoothness, of creaminess to it due to the large amount of froth on top and the delicate carbonation, but there was also the crisp, clean freshness of the hops that served to lighten it up as well.

D – Very nice sipper. I found this to be an excellent accompaniment to dinner and something that was best served over a period of time to really enjoy the flavors and really let it bring out all the subtle nuances it had to offer.

Overall this was a tricky one. It was kind of different then a lot of the stuff I had tried and was definitely very complex. I really enjoyed the hops in the finish and thought that the fruit notes of the yeast were really splendid as well. A really nice treat and something I would very much like to try again. A bit different and almost like the Belgian version of an IPA. A bit darker and a bit more sour then the La Chouffee, this was defiantly a treat. (2,738 characters)

Photo of rvdoorn
4.35/5  rDev +20.5%
look: 4.5 | smell: 4.5 | taste: 4.5 | feel: 4 | overall: 4

Directly from the brewery. Poured into a de Molen sniffer. The beer pours a hazy orange-yellow color with an enormous fluffy head.

Smell: Yeast, bitter hops. peach, grapefruit, honey, almonds and some spicy alcohol. Smells like a Belgium tripel.

Taste: Very bitter hops (cascade hops?), grapefruit, peach, maybe some hints of apple, and bitter hops again. Very bitter and dry aftertaste.

Mouthfeel: medium-high carbonation, medium-bodied.

Overall: Very nice beer from a great pico-brewery. So nice and bitter! Hop bomb! Will have this again for sure. Love it. (566 characters)

Photo of shivtim
4.34/5  rDev +20.2%
look: 4 | smell: 5 | taste: 4 | feel: 4 | overall: 4.5

Tried on tap.
Served up in a snifter. Deep golden amber with a billowy off-white head that lasts.

Nose is tart. Sweet and sour. Vinegar and hops. Absolutely fantastic.

Taste is surprisingly sour. Not expecting this from a Belgian IPA. Almost like a hoppy Oud Bruin. Sweet-tarts and lingering hops. Interesting combo.

Solid mouthfeel. A very unique and great beer. (366 characters)

Photo of Georgiabeer
4.33/5  rDev +19.9%
look: 4.5 | smell: 4 | taste: 4.5 | feel: 4 | overall: 4.5

Had this on-tap at the Brick Store in an Alvinne Tulip. I've had this before in the bottle and eenjoyed it, but on tap it is a whole 'nother beer. Pours a hazy orange with a magnificent 2 1/2 inch rocky head that leaves some spectacular lacing. Aromas of slightly sweet lemon and orange citrus and sweet malt. tropical fruit follows as well as some crackery malt and tangerine on the finish. Tastes pretty remarkable on-tap. A complex blend slightly grainy light sourness, piney and citrusy hops loaded with tangerine flavors, pineapple, pine, cream, and a touch of herbalness underneath it all. Mouthfeel is slighty tart and smooth with an earthy feel. Complex and refreshing, and a very Belgian interpretation of an IPA. Unbelievably smooth and drinkable for the abv. (769 characters)

Photo of MadBeerX
4.29/5  rDev +18.8%
look: 3.5 | smell: 4.5 | taste: 4.5 | feel: 4 | overall: 4

Hanging out in my champagne flute, this beer is beautiful with its distinct off-white light orange head. Supreme lacing.

It releases smells of caramel coverred cherrys.
The taste is of strawberry orange with a lingering finish of semi-sweet malt funk and vanilla.

This is what Infinium wish it tasted like.

If you can find it, try it. (337 characters)

Photo of Travlr
4.25/5  rDev +17.7%
look: 4.5 | smell: 4.5 | taste: 4 | feel: 4 | overall: 4.5

Sample bottle at the brewery, poured by Glenn.
A: Birght orange with a big fluffy head that lingers and leaves moderate lacing.
S: Aroma of bread, orange peel and coriander.
T: Dominant malts with complex spiciness.
M: Good body.
D: Excellent Belgian style IPA. (261 characters)

Photo of ElGordo
4.2/5  rDev +16.3%
look: 4 | smell: 4 | taste: 4.5 | feel: 4 | overall: 4

Poured from the 330ml bottle into a Duvel tulip. Body is a slightly opaque, pale golden-orange color, crowned by a small ring of stark white head. Aroma is mostly pale malt with a good bit of spice to it, pepper and pine from the aggressive hop profile. Palate is a big dose of piney, citrusy hops, tempered by some sweet pale malt and a funky, slightly sweet yeast character. Finish is rather dry, with a lingering hoppy bitterness. Body is a little thin for a beer as strong as this one, but is still substantial enough for the amount of flavor. This is a slow-sipper, one to savor over the course of an hour or so, but still highly drinkable. An excellent new beer to the Oregon market. (689 characters)

Photo of RustyDiamond
4.2/5  rDev +16.3%
look: 4 | smell: 4 | taste: 4.5 | feel: 4 | overall: 4

Served in an Alvinne tulip yesterday @ Brick Store Pub. Hazy orange with a bright 2 fingers of near-white thick froth. Aromas of green apple, pear and corrainder. Sweet at first, getting the corrainder and green apple. The corrainder and the hops go very well together...very refreshing. Zesty hop mouthfeel and the soft fruit taste was still apparent. Finishes champagne dry noticeable dry-hopping. Really good Belgian IPA. (424 characters)

Photo of ManforallSaisons
4.14/5  rDev +14.7%
look: 4.25 | smell: 4 | taste: 4.25 | feel: 4.25 | overall: 4

Bottle poured at the brewery, making for a beautiful, thick-looking copper with a copious and lasting head the color of a good sabayon. Lots of citrus-y hop aromas, grapefruit, orange and wood. Hops are to the fore as much in the mouth, with a large dose but of a delicately flavored blend, giving more taste of grapefruit and a coriander herbal note. Also a nice dose of malt, caramel, yellow fruits. There is a balance there of lots of contrasting flavors, but not quite in a harmonious whole. Creamy, filling but clean feel, well done on that. A winter brew in blonde style. (577 characters)

Photo of ryandurka
4.13/5  rDev +14.4%
look: 4.5 | smell: 4 | taste: 4 | feel: 4 | overall: 4.5

this beer is smooth and crisp with a nice overall taste. i could drink a couple of these, its not to strong or to strong tasting. i would buy this beer again and recommend it to anyone. however this beer is expensive and hard to find, so, for the money it may be better to go with another beer that is distributed better. (321 characters)

Photo of BeerResearcher
4.12/5  rDev +14.1%
look: 4 | smell: 4.5 | taste: 4 | feel: 4 | overall: 4

Pours a hazy tannish beige color with a big fluffy creamy off-white head and trails of patchy lacing.
A huge floral hop aroma is released upon opening. Herbal oregano smells are followed by hints of peppery spice and alcohol fuminess.
Make no mistake, this is a hop monster with plentiful bites of edgy citrus peel, lemony sourness with a pronounced metallic tang.
Beneath all that hoppiness lays a shallow malt body. About halfway through the glass a taste of caramel emerges, as does a hay-like grassiness. A mild taste of tobacco comes and goes. A clean alcoholic fume can be detected more in the aftertaste.
A decent Belgian twist on an American Double IPA. (661 characters)

Photo of timtim
4.1/5  rDev +13.6%
look: 4 | smell: 4 | taste: 4 | feel: 4 | overall: 4.5

the reviews are certainly all over the place on this one... poured a nice, hazy, honey apricot peach color with a white head that didn't stick around too long or leave very much lace. nice lemony, citrusy, hoppy nose and taste with some green apple and sweetness poking it's head through as well. smooth and medium full with a lot of carbonation. very drinkable, and great with the pizza i was eating. good effort from the belgians on this one. no houblon, but an interesting change and able to give any other belgian ipa i've had a run for their money. i'll have anotheer. cheers. (581 characters)

Photo of kirkmichel
4.1/5  rDev +13.6%
look: 4 | smell: 4 | taste: 4 | feel: 4 | overall: 4.5

came in a wine style glass, a caramel/ apricot opaque color, with a tall & thick foam on top, which took several minutes to dissapate. smelled like green apples...tasted a little like them, too, with a nice hoppy bite, but not an overwhelming one for an IPA. a bit too bitter on the finish, but overall a B+ in my book! (319 characters)

Photo of nickfl
4.09/5  rDev +13.3%
look: 4 | smell: 5 | taste: 4 | feel: 3.5 | overall: 3.5

A - Explodes with white foam as it pours into the glass and eventually develops a towering, five finger head. The body is a hazy copper color, with some suspended particles. The head settles slowly and leaves thick rings of whipped cream like foam behind.

S - Strong aroma of spicy, German hops backed by sweet malt. There is some yeasty character present as well; notes of pepper, tropical fruit, and some slight sourness.

T - Strong, spicy, yeast character up front, backed by hop bitterness. There is a lot of earthy, spicy hop flavor in the middle along with a malt note that attempts, but does not quite succeed in, balancing out the bitterness. The finish is quite bitter, with lingering spice from the hops and a hint of smoke.

M - Thick, creamy mouthfeel with very high carbonation and a dry finish. There is noticeable alcohol warmth and a bit of astringency from the hops as well.

D - This is an interesting brew, but not terribly drinkable. The aroma is really quite excellent, but the flavor fails to live up to its promise. The hop character is strong, but kind of dull and the bitterness is a bit harsh. A good beer overall, but there are better Belgian IPAs out there. (1,187 characters)

Photo of tendermorsel
4.08/5  rDev +13%
look: 4 | smell: 3.5 | taste: 4.5 | feel: 3 | overall: 4.5

Poured from a 355ml bottle a tapered tulip glass.

Very little head. Great hop smell rising from the head. Extremely bitter beer. Bitter hop taste was present at first but was much more pronounced on the back end. You could taste the bitter hops especially on the back of the throat. Citrus and fruity notes helped to mellow it a bit. However, after every sip I was reminder how hoppy this was by the bitter taste on the back end. Great stuff.

This is the hoppiest Belgian I have ever had. Not as good as some of the American hop bombs but more drinkable than some as it was not too over the top.

I would recommend this one and have added 2 bottles to my cellar. (673 characters)

Photo of nahthan
4.08/5  rDev +13%
look: 4 | smell: 3.5 | taste: 4.5 | feel: 4 | overall: 4

Wow, from reading the reviews it sounds like lots of bad examples of this have ended up on the east coast through a distributor who mishandled this one. Too bad. I tried it from bottle at the Trappist in Oakland. 115IBU from Belgium? This is definitely worth a sample. Unlike the American brewers who are trying to out hop-hype themselves and rip my stomach in half, this one is focused on smooth bittering hop flavor, which just goes to show that 115IBU means something different in Belgian brewers minds than American brewers.. The bottle says, hallertau, goldings and saaz. The goldings are defeinitely very prominent in the bittering, somewhat with saaz on the finish, but i would have not guessed hallertau. Light golden color, medium carbonation, nice and dry finish. More spicy than citrus in the hop flavor, very delicious all in all. Thanks to Aaron for the pour and suggestion. (887 characters)

Photo of dsa7783
4.08/5  rDev +13%
look: 5 | smell: 4.5 | taste: 4 | feel: 4 | overall: 3.5

This was a very unique and different sample from most other Belgians I've sampled... As far as the Belgian IPA style is concerned, this one certainly fits the bill, with an immense hoppines and bitterness, that, according to the short and fat 11.2 oz bottle, measures up to a whopping 115 IBU... Orange logo sticker clearly states that "Gaspar is one of the hoppiest beers of Belgium" - both the aroma and flavor can really vouch for that claim... The appearance was literally phenomenal, as a full, five-fingered immense foamy and incredibly frothy head sat atop a golden-colored hue with obvious carbonation visible that kept on rising... there was no containing the head that just kept on growing... smell was bursting with hoppy bitterness - you could tell off the bat that this one was going to be a superior European IPA... honey and caramel flavors rounded off the intense bitterness associated with this beer that certainly did not lack for flavor... Very pepperish taste added to the complexity, and I must recommend this one as one of the better Belgian IPA's - this sample is up there with La Chouffe's Dobbelen IPA Triple and Urthel Hop It, although not as well-known... Bottle purchased for $4.99 from Wine and Beverage Depot in Totowa... Outstanding selection... Definitely recommended... (1,302 characters)

Photo of Darkmagus82
4.06/5  rDev +12.5%
look: 3.75 | smell: 4 | taste: 4.25 | feel: 3.75 | overall: 4

Poured from bottle into a chalice glass

Appearance – Even with very little agitation when taking the beer out of the fridge, upon opening, it exploded with tons of foam spewing from the brew. Upon pouring in the glass, a huge bubbly head forms with massive carbonation bubbles entrapped within. The color of the brew is of a hazy straw nature with some hints of orange seen within. The massive foam head has a great level of retention, very slowly fading and leaving lots of foamy lace on the sides of the glass.

Smell – The aroma has a nice blend of Belgian yeast, citrus, and hop. The Belgian yeast aromas bring a nice yeast cake and spice aroma of coriander and clove along with a lighter banana smell. The citrus smells are mainly of a sweet orange nature, but also contain some aromas of lemon. These lemon aromas couple as hop aromas as well, and are mixed with some grassy and herbal hop smells; all melding with the rest of the smells to produce a very nice aroma overall.

Taste – The taste begins with a bready and yeasty flavor with a moderately strong showing of a sweet orange and a sour and bitter lemon citrus taste. After the initial tastes, a nice yeasty flavor hits the tongue, bringing with it a banana flavor. The sweeter orange flavor dwindles as the taste moves on with it becoming drier as the flavor moves to the end. The bready flavors take on a more cracker nature as well, with a decently strong grassy and herbal flavor as well as a little bit of earth coming to the tongue, in all, leaving a rather drier and moderately, but not too hoppy,Belgian flavor to linger on the tongue.

Mouthfeel – The body of the beer is on the average to slightly thicker side with a carbonation level that was insanely high. The carbonation level was almost ridiculous making it almost impossible to pour, but yet still somehow appropriate for the hop flavors and Belgian style.

Overall –A rather pleasant drinking Belgian IPA. Rather enjoyable overall. (1,976 characters)

Photo of TheManiacalOne
4.05/5  rDev +12.2%
look: 4 | smell: 4 | taste: 4 | feel: 4.5 | overall: 4

On-tap 3/30/08 at Track 84 in Warwick, RI, served in a tulip glass.

A: The beer is a dark gold color, with a large, dense, off-white head that fades very slowly and leaves a thick lace on the glass.

S: The aroma is of Belgian yeast, caramelized malts, some fruit and some hops.

T: The taste starts out malty and sweet with flavors of Belgian yeast, apples, caramel and some spice, then a strong hops presence comes in and creates a bitterness that stays into the after-taste.

M: Smooth and very crisp, medium body, medium carbonation, finish is clean and dry.

D: Tasty, goes down easily, not too filling, nice kick, good representation of style, this is a good beer to drink for a while, if you're in the mood for this style. (731 characters)

Photo of feloniousmonk
4.05/5  rDev +12.2%
look: 4 | smell: 4 | taste: 4 | feel: 4.5 | overall: 4

115 IBUs? I'm intriqued...

Cloudy amber coloring, vast puffy, creamy white head. Promising look to it.

Aroma is a melange of yeast and funk and bright European hops (Hallertau, Saaz, & Goldings), but I'm not picking up the typical flavors...some spice and lemon zest is perceived. Interesting.

Complex mouthfeel, full and packed with more flavors from the yeast, and the malt (pilsner and 3 "special" ones)...some grassy feel from hops, then the bitterness smacks down and floods the palate. Swirls all around the tongue and takes over...for a time...then goes...leaving a linger bitter feel behind.

Unusual hop profile continues to bedevil and delight the tongue. Not as crazy as I imagined it to be, plenty well-balanced, for sure. The yeasty/malty mix in the flavor, entwined with the high hop bitterness makes for a very unique brew.

Seek it out. Look for the orange label with the three wisemen and the camel. (929 characters)

Photo of BuckeyeNation
4.03/5  rDev +11.6%
look: 4.5 | smell: 4 | taste: 4 | feel: 4 | overall: 4

Polished kumquat that is only visible at the very bottom of the glass, thanks to a typically massive, Belgianesque crown the color of aged ivory. When it comes to the creation of foam masterpieces, no country is within light years of Belgium. The head is considerably creamy and splendidly sticky, leading to a lace display that can only be described as gorgeous.

More than most beer of this relatively new style, Gaspar Ale smells like a highly-hopped Belgian tripel. Of course, one could argue that that's exactly what a Belgian IPA should smell like. This Picobrouwerij Alvinne offering is shaping up to be pale malty, impressively bitter and significantly clove spicy. Given 115 IBUs, the second of those is an easy call.

My first several mouthfuls are a bit of a letdown in the bitterness department. The beer is considerably more bitter than most tripels or BSPAs, but it won't scare any American IPA worth its salt. That's fine. There's no need to get into an escalating international hops race. On second thought...

All but the final few ounces have been poured into the glass and a moderate amount of yeast are now visible. That should make the flavor even more aggressive than it already is. A more than adequate amount of pilsner malt adds sugary underpinnings to the bitter hops and the spicy yeast.

The hop bill includes Hallertau, Kent Goldings and Saaz; reasonable choices for a Belgian IPA. That lineup isn't as delicious as American C-hops (personal opinion), but is perfectly fine given the context. They're grassy, herbal and minimally lemon zesty, with an alpha acid load that is now beginning to assert itself with authority. Good stuff.

Despite an amazing head (which is still going strong), the bubbles have slackened and no longer provide the creamy expansiveness that they did initially. Enough of them have survived, however, for a good mouthfeel score to be granted.

My favorite Belgian IPAs are (in no particular order): De Ranke XX Bitter, Urthel Hop-It and Houblon Chouffe Dobbelen IPA Tripel. Gaspar makes a bid to join that group, but comes up short in the end. It's still delicious, drinkable beer and is recommended for those who love Belgian tripels and BSPAs as much as they love hops. (2,227 characters)

Photo of pat61
4/5  rDev +10.8%
look: 4 | smell: 4 | taste: 4 | feel: 4 | overall: 4

L: It pours hazy gold to peach with a billowy 2” white head that provides clingy lace
S: The nose is fruit with traces of biscuit.
T: Fruit, biscuit, spice, peach, alcohol, citrus and orange juice.
F: Very creamy, medium to medium light body, medium high carbonation.
O: This is supposed to be Belgium’s hoppiest ale – the hops are minimal at best suggesting the beer is past its prime. (396 characters)

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Gaspar Ale from Picobrouwerij Alvinne
82 out of 100 based on 106 ratings.