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Abbaye Des Rocs Grand Cru Belgian Special Brown - Brasserie de l'Abbaye des Rocs s.a.

Not Rated.
Abbaye Des Rocs Grand Cru Belgian Special BrownAbbaye Des Rocs Grand Cru Belgian Special Brown

Displayed for educational use only; do not reuse.
BA SCORE
94
outstanding

667 Ratings
THE BROS
-
no score

(send 'em beer!)
Ratings: 667
Reviews: 503
rAvg: 4.21
pDev: 10.93%
Wants: 35
Gots: 29 | FT: 1
Brewed by:
Brasserie de l'Abbaye des Rocs s.a. visit their website
Belgium

Style | ABV
Belgian Strong Dark Ale |  9.00% ABV

Availability: Year-round

Notes/Commercial Description:
No notes at this time.

(Beer added by: jdhilt on 10-08-2005)
Beer: Ratings & Reviews
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Ratings: 667 | Reviews: 503 | Display Reviews Only:
Photo of acrawf6
4.15/5  rDev -1.4%
look: 3 | smell: 4.5 | taste: 4 | feel: 4 | overall: 4.5

11.2 oz bottle
Best before 2007

Pours out a dark ruby and brown with a small frothy head. This bottle has a crap load of sediment. The floaties are all over. If not for so many, i would have given the appearance a better score cuz it does look good.

Smell. Initially sweet with a bit of raisons and molassis, then spices up, peppery with alcohol, and then tarts up like the aromas of a freshly cut green apple.

Taste. I find this bottle has a very mild flavor than other bottles i've had of this. Light and crisp fruitiness, lots of apples and some white grapes. As it warms in my mouth, a bit of the pepper comes out. There is a nice yeasty flavor that gives it a good natural flavor.
finishes a little bit warming from the alcohol. But for 10%, this beer hides it's alcohol incredibly.

Mouthfeel. Has a nice amount of carbonation biting at my toungue. The balance is nice, the mouthfeel is a little thinner than i remember; this beer is almost refreshing for a summer beer, rather than a sipper i would want on a cold winter night.

Overall. A very interesting beer. Quite light for a strong dark ale (in mouthfeel). But the flavors are solid. There is something about the beer i am drinking right now... I think this beer normally tastes different, but there is nothing with this beer in front of me, so i guess i'll just have to get another bottle and re-review.

acrawf6, Aug 08, 2006
Photo of Westsidethreat
4.58/5  rDev +8.8%
look: 3.5 | smell: 4 | taste: 5 | feel: 4.5 | overall: 4.5

A: Just a touch carbonated, as I popped the top the beer was in an awful hurry to get out off the glass. Poured a friggin monumental oatmal colored head, sticky as all hell. The body is a filthy umber brown hue with no visibility to speak of.

S: Brown sugar, fresh bread dough, white wood resin, pepper and cardomon.

T: Begins lightly fruity mixed with some mellow toffee notes. From there the fruit flavors increase...a menagerie of apricots, white peaches, strawberries and figs. The caramel flavors kick in mixed with a pronounced woody tone mixed with almonds and honey. Finishes with so much white peach its ridiculous. Alcohol is well hidden except for the warming of the belly.

M: Medium to full body with a surprisingly smooth carbonation for the amount that was stored in the bottle

D: Great beer. Unique in the medley of peach, wood and almonds. Not sure what more I can say other than I recommend it.

Westsidethreat, Aug 03, 2006
Photo of peabody
4.85/5  rDev +15.2%
look: 5 | smell: 4.5 | taste: 5 | feel: 4.5 | overall: 5

Man, reading the reviews on this it seems not everyone has the same love for the flavor as I do. This has to be the best thing I have swilled around in my mouth ever. It has a slightly sweet flavor with a spicy aftertaste. I am new to the finer beers of the world, but am learning. The smells are fantastic but the taste has to be the best thing going for it. I could sit and drink two or three bottles of this. I guess it is back to the beer store for some more of this
great beer.

peabody, Jul 31, 2006
Photo of becktone
3.43/5  rDev -18.5%
look: 3.5 | smell: 3 | taste: 4 | feel: 2.5 | overall: 3

This Belgian Strong Dark pours an opaque cloudy light brown color. The head- cascading during and for a short amount of time after pour- is an off white tea stained color. The size and retention of the head are alright, lacing however could be improved. Compared to the other Belgian Strong Darks that I've had this one doesn't look quite as good.

The beer smells of dark fruits-perhaps raisins-, caramel and there is a faint smell of alcohol. The nose is all around is fairly weak and I think it could be improved if it were a bit more pronounced. Smells good, but again I've smelled better.

On the tongue this beer is pretty good one of the first things I notice is that the taste doesn't linger very long. This beer is pretty short lived on the palate. Lots of sweetness in the flavor of this beer. Sweet caramel and candi flavors abound in this beer, but it isn't as complex or nearly as good as others I've had. Alcohol is also apparent in the flavor and adds a nice dimension. The dark fruit aroma is somewhat precievable in the flavor, but isn't noticed unless its looked for. Overall this is a good brew, but it fell short of what I expected. Flavor of this beer is perhaps it's most redeeming quality.

As mentioned above this beer is short lived on the palate. I don't like that quality about this beer. It makes it too easy to drink and too easy to forget what it tasted like. The mouthfeel was a little lighter than I expected, espicially for such a big beer. I would buy this beer again, however with so many Belgian Strong Dark Ales that I've not yet tried this is one that I prolly won't be coming back to any time soon. Its good but not good enough to get me hooked on this specific beer.

Note: reviewed as listed stylistically on this site, I realize that this is not A Strong Dark but is really Brown Ale, ohh my first one.

becktone, Jul 23, 2006
Photo of Fuller
4/5  rDev -5%
look: 4 | smell: 4.5 | taste: 4 | feel: 4 | overall: 3.5

slighty cloudy brown body with some reddish hues. Large tan head that disappeared quickly leaving medium lacing. More sediment floating around in this beer than just about any other I've tried. Nose is not what I expected and it is not nearly as strong as I expected. The yeast and roasted malts that I normally smell in Belgians is hardly noticeable in this one. The smell is mostly of fruit, but not just of the darker fruit, this has some citrus to it. Taste is very sweet and malty. The citrus in the smell is not near as evident in the taste. As it warms, spice and alcohol start to come through at the end. Mouthfeel is full and creamy. Very good beer but drinkability is hurt a little because of how sweet it is.

Fuller, Jul 22, 2006
Photo of ViveLaChouffe
3.9/5  rDev -7.4%
look: 4 | smell: 4.5 | taste: 4 | feel: 3 | overall: 3.5

Pours a hazy golden brown with a dense creamy tan head. Lots of chunky yeast suspended in the beer. Perhaps I decanted too roughly. Smells of bright sweet fruit, almost citrusy. Aromas of sweet spice.

Taste is sweet and spicy. Clove and ginger. Caramle. Peppery spice int he finish. Alcohol is evident throughout but not overbearing at all, just warming. Mouth is mudium bodies, kepps the sweetness from being cloying. Nice bitter finish. I don't like the chunky yeast, kind of gross to feel in the mouth. Takes from the drinkability too. I'll try again and decant more carefully. Outside of the yeast, it's money.

ViveLaChouffe, Jul 21, 2006
Photo of Phatz
4.58/5  rDev +8.8%
look: 4 | smell: 4.5 | taste: 4.5 | feel: 4.5 | overall: 5

We drank this beer at room temperature. Thanks 'YBSober' for sharing! It maybe could have used a touch of chill on it but what a fantastic treat anyway.

Appearance: This beer pours chestnut brown with a nice tan head. At the instant I popped the cap it started flowing down the side of the glass.

Smell: Toasted malts and candied malts, caramel a butter brown sugar. Cookie dough and spices along with subtle whiff of fruits also fill the nose.

Taste: Sweet toasted malts and marvelous sugar character hide all evidence of the alcohol making this a sheer joy to drink.

Mouthfeel: The mouthfeel is full and yet not heavy. A nice amount of carbonation keeps it very creamy and fluffy smooth in the mouth.

Drinkability: This beer went down so remarkably easily that I didn’t even realize my glass was empty.

Hope this is helpful.
Cheers!

Phatz, Jul 20, 2006
Photo of WetCoaster
3.85/5  rDev -8.6%
look: 4.5 | smell: 4.5 | taste: 3.5 | feel: 3.5 | overall: 4

At last this puppy rears its head here in San Fran. In 11.2s, no less. Let's see if the legend is just that.

Appearance: Dang! Very, very unsettled bottle, just about blew up when I opened it. Wonder why? Anyway, what beer made its way to the glass is a lovely, somewhat cloudy, glowing amber/orange. Loose, off-white head with good retention.

Smell: Interesting; almost a saison/BSDA blend. Sharp, bright green apple, grape and cherry, a bit bready and dry, but then also rich and deep with chocolate cake and toffee malt.

Taste/Mouthfeel: Very smooth and lightish feel. Taste is, IMHO, disappointingly simple. Caramel, toffee... that's it. Looking for more, especially the fruit from the aroma, but it just ain't happening.

Drinkability: Out of context, it's pleasant enough, but given all the hype surrounding this one, I was genuinely let down. I simply didn't find anything that made it stand out from any number of BSDAs or even a few winter warmers, for that matter. Didn't find this cru that grand.

WetCoaster, Jul 11, 2006
Photo of RedHaze
4.15/5  rDev -1.4%
look: 4 | smell: 4.5 | taste: 4 | feel: 4.5 | overall: 4

Pours a very cloudy dark brown with a frothy, dense two finger head that fades very slowly to a thick cap, leaving behind a sticky layer of lace on the glass. There's tons of little floaties, and I was pretty careful with the pour.

Smell; tons of dark fruits, with cherries, plums, dates, apples and bits of citrus. Brown sugar and cinnamon come through along with some spices I can't quite place. This one smells really damn good.

Taste: sweet toffee and brown sugar hit me up front, as well as cocoa and sugar cookies. The fruits filll out the middle with apples, plums, cherries and apricots. The finish is slightly nutty and yeasty, with a mild peppery spiciness, and just some hints of alcohol. The flavor is just what you would expect following the aroma, just wonderful. Mouthfeel is medium to full bodied, and so drinkable that...damnit where'd my beer go?

RedHaze, Jul 07, 2006
Photo of clickpush
4.22/5  rDev +0.2%
look: 4 | smell: 3.5 | taste: 4.5 | feel: 4 | overall: 4.5

Pour: .33L bottle to wide mouth glass. Pretty much exploded when I popped the top. Nice two finger tan head with a cloudy copper body. Lacings are thick and scattered.

Nose: Smells of sweet spices and citrus, mainly lemon and orange, with a significant hop presence.

Mouth: Sweet and creamy with flavors of peaches and oranges. Also has sweet/spicy flavors of laurel and cinnamon.

clickpush, Jun 28, 2006
Photo of maniac
4.28/5  rDev +1.7%
look: 4 | smell: 4.5 | taste: 4.5 | feel: 3.5 | overall: 4

Appearance was hazy dark amber color with some sediment floating around with a medium creamy off-white head.
Had a sweet aroma of raisins and fruit, with some nutty hints.
Flavor was almonds, some fruit, and a touch of caramel.
Easy to drink, but the sediment was a little much by the end.

maniac, Jun 27, 2006
Photo of expatsteve
4.83/5  rDev +14.7%
look: 4.5 | smell: 4.5 | taste: 5 | feel: 4.5 | overall: 5

Appearance: Deep copper brown with slighty orange edges. Initially poured fairly cloudy with no visibility, but successive pours gradually darkened in color and lightened in visibility. No real head, but a residual film that clings to the beer and the sides of the glass. Light/medium viscosity that hangs brilliantly on the glass.

Aroma: Apples and apricots, with some raisin notes. Suggestions of brown sugar, with a sour malt finish.

Taste: Again, the front and middle palates of this beer changed the three or four times I had it. The first pour was thick and malty, with a front palate reminiscent of a rich sourdough bread. Apricot, plum, raisins, green apples notes. Later glasses had a hard cider finish that was refreshing, if a little suggestive at times of the alcohol content of the beer. Lighter middle palate with subtle almond notes. The sourdough finish relaxed as the beer warmed up, but continued to provide a foundation for the fruit flavor.

Mouthfeel: Crisp finish, low carbonation. Bready finish aded to mouthfeel, as it left the aftertaste earthy rather than bitter.

Drinkability: Light/medium body balances the booze and makes this an eminently drinkable beer. While I enjoyed my first two glass a little more than subsequent ones, it is nonetheless one of the most complex and yet most drinkable beers I've tried. Dangerous, but worth the risk.

expatsteve, Jun 23, 2006
Photo of DaPeculierDane
4.88/5  rDev +15.9%
look: 4.5 | smell: 4.5 | taste: 5 | feel: 5 | overall: 5

On tap at Maduro in Madison, WI. Poured generously into an oversized St. Bernardus glass for only $3 per.

Appearance: Satanic velvet completely ensanguined within a rouge mantle. Head is tan and creamy, but thin (probably due to the glass). Lacing is above average, mostly clinging to the sides of the glass. Again, I feel that this glass is inappropriate for this beer. It doesn’t agitate enough. Still, the Grand Cru is a looker. The color is undoubtedly perfect and damned sexy. Carbonation is minuscule and compact.

Nose: Balanced and succinct within the aroma lay some very divergent notes ranging from lemon cookies to earth, cinnamon to plums, and sour orange to candied sugar. Everything fits together like a Lego set. Everything screams drinkable. Nothing even whispers “9.5%.”

Taste: Reminiscent of my first experiences with the St. Bernie 12, I have a hard time placing my palate on particular flavors. I am certain of dark and tropical fruits, candied sugar, cocoa, and plenty of spice but this beer is admonishing me not to get into specifics. Everything is so well blended and balanced it has become difficult to distinguish one flavor from another. Instead this masterpiece is all about feel and drinkability. Both it has in spades.

Mouthfeel: No hint at ABV. Full bodied but drinkable as if it were very light. Defining of the term luscious. Velvety. Rich and complex but not overwhelming. Lightly spicy finish.

Drinkability: One of the most drinkable beers I’ve ever had (top 5 of all time drinkable).

DaPeculierDane, Jun 09, 2006
Photo of instrumentality
3.9/5  rDev -7.4%
look: 4.5 | smell: 4.5 | taste: 3.5 | feel: 4 | overall: 4

I originally put this review in the wrong place, not realizing that there were two "Grand Crus." The bad news is that I picked the wrong beer. The good news is that this could mean that the arm and leg I paid to have more shipped from Belgium might actually be worth it if they turn out to be the other Grand Cru.

Moving on...

I swear I didn't shake it up before opening it, but as soon as the cap was off, a fountain of foam launched from the mouth of the bottle. Fortunately, I was able to save every drop and I just had to wait patiently for the enormous, bubbly, tan head to settle. The body was a cloudy amber.

The odor was primarily fruity and, oddly, slightly like cola with a hint of malt and red wine. It was very refreshing.

The taste was definitely unique...pretty smooth, a bit like plum but more tart, a bit like apple cider, and slightly carmelly in aftertaste.

Mouthfeel was characterized by a bit of carbonation, but it was very easy on the palate and left only the mildest tart fruity aftertaste.

It's easy to drink in that there are no really intense flavors, but I'd say it's more drinkable than it is good. There are a lot of interesting flavors, but they're all very subtle. It's almost like I'm drinking a really complex beer that's been watered down. I allowed it to warm a bit to see if anything new surfaced, and while it did improve a little, I still wasn't that impressed.

In the scheme of things, it's better than most beers, but it needs more kick. Hopefully one day I'll get my hands on the Grand Cru that actually gets some BA love and really learn what this brewery is capable of.

instrumentality, Jun 02, 2006
Photo of dogfooddog
4.1/5  rDev -2.6%
look: 4 | smell: 4.5 | taste: 4 | feel: 4 | overall: 4

33cl bottle, the 9.5% version of the grand cru, apparently the 10% is a thing of the past. The bottle immediately startes foaming when i pop the cap. Pours into a chalice with 25% head. best before date illeg.

Nose is dark candy sweetness, with a hint of bitterness along.

Bitter taste up front, typical de rocs notes of dark fruity sensations with powerful bittersweet undertone that carries and dominates the finish. The taste is not as nice as the nose in this bottle. Seems a bit drier than some of their other dark/amber beers.

It has been years since I had the 10% version and cannot offer comparison.

Excellent beer and one to try, though I prefer their triple imperial, amber/montagnarde, and noel beers better.

dogfooddog, May 28, 2006
Photo of TurdFurgison
4.03/5  rDev -4.3%
look: 4.5 | smell: 4 | taste: 4 | feel: 4 | overall: 4

Poured from an 11.2oz bottle into a Westveleteren chalice. Murky brown color with thick foamy tan head. The smell reminds me of Gouden Carolus Carolus D'Or a little. Also Nostrodamus.

The taste is syrupy sweet and a little cloying. I can't tell if any hops at all were used. The alcohol shows up in the after-taste but isn't too offensive.

Good stuff but not an everyday beer. Also 11.2oz is just enough. I bought this at Beverage Warehouse in LA for about $4. I wish the small bottles were available here in OH...

TurdFurgison, May 28, 2006
Photo of Lnedrive14
4.1/5  rDev -2.6%
look: 5 | smell: 3.5 | taste: 4 | feel: 4.5 | overall: 4.5

Cellared for about a year (although I think it was about a year old when I bought it).

Pours BEAUTIFULLY - big, thick head, dark, hazy brown. An absolutely gorgeous beer. Nose was fairly faint - malts, honey, dried fruits are there, but not strong enough. The taste I found similar - bit of sweetness which was nicely rounded with the thick malts, however I just found that it wasn't as flavorful as I had hoped. Still a great tasting beer, but not one where I was pulling out all kinds of sensations from. Drinkability is amazing - goes down silky smooth with only the faintest alcohol presence.

Would like to try a newer bottle.

Lnedrive14, May 27, 2006
Photo of czechsaaz
4.75/5  rDev +12.8%
look: 4 | smell: 4.5 | taste: 5 | feel: 5 | overall: 4.5

750ml cellared for about a year.

Very spicey aroma with lots of yeast esters. Some citrus-like yeast character and licorice. Malt aromas are complex cofee and honey and maybe a little biscuit. There's also a dessert wine effect with a little acidity in the smell but mostly sweeter aromas.

Light brown colored, pretty hazy but with a solid 1/2 inch layer of lasting tan head.

Flavor is first off malty sweet a caramel. Then lots of fruit flavors, cherry and baked apples and other things that whatever yeast they're using probably produced. None of the fruit is strong enough to indicate it was brewed with fruit. Very spicey too. Not sure how much of that is the yeast again and what was added. I taste cinamon and coriander and licorice again. All very subtle and hard to pick out for sure. Complexity here is pretty outstanding. All the flavors balance out really nicely. On the back end there's acidity and a light hop bite so it isn't overly sweet but on malty-to-hoppy scale this is definitely far on the malty side.

Very full bodied but not heavy. Carbonation level is pretty light and creamy. Just a hint of alcohol there so you can tell it's a big beer.

Very enjoyable complex sipper. Delicious beer but not for everyday drinking.

czechsaaz, May 25, 2006
Photo of doppelmeup
4.25/5  rDev +1%
look: 3.5 | smell: 4 | taste: 4.5 | feel: 4.5 | overall: 4

Poured this from a small bottle with best before date of sometime in 2008.

This is one of the chunkiest beers I've seen. In spite of a careful pour into my tulip glass, this beer is chock full of chunks. Medium auburn colored, with a half inch head that dissipates to leave an eighth inch thich covering which remains throughout. The lacing tends to be chunky as well.

Not as yeasty as other Belgians I've had. Very fruity. Hints of clemintine oranges, cloves, honey, sugar cane, and yeast. Definitely on the sweet side. As it warms, the alcohol starts to come through.

Tasted delicious, and very similar to the aroma. Honey, oranges, yeast, some malt and a very slight alcoholicy bitterness to the finish.

You could feel the alcohol as you drank it, even though it was well hidden in the taste. Moderately thick and very warming.. Bitter, alcoholicy finish. My brain kept telling me I could feel the chunks, but I don't think I really could.

This was an excellent beer. I was a bit put off by the chunkiness at first, but then quickly got over it as I tasted this beer. The high ABV means drink with caution. Nice beer, especially for a treat as it is a bit on the expensive side compared to other beer.

doppelmeup, May 22, 2006
Photo of JulieRFoster
3.73/5  rDev -11.4%
look: 3.5 | smell: 3.5 | taste: 4 | feel: 2.5 | overall: 4

I received this beer as a gift from a friend in Belgium, and force of circumstance (he gave it to me at 7am) meant that I brought it back to Paris, let it sit in poor conditions in my apartment for two months and then lovingly carried it back with me to the States. Therefore much of my perception of this beer is tainted by my horrible treatment of the bottle, but I enjoyed it all the same.
A friend who I shared this with characterized it as "Kind of like your standard good beer." Despite its sweetness, it had a good drinkability. The flavor was a little unbalanced with a little too much sugar, and a mouthfeel that was a little too light. The carbonation was good, and it would have been perfect if the texture was slightly more viscous. Of course, that's most likely a product of transport.
The nose was very pleasant, although not too complex: some strawberry and other red fruits (merteuille), a little oaky, lots of yeast and some alcohol (which detracted from its overall appeal).
I would describe the taste similar to how I described the appearance (if that makes any sense). It comes off kind of like a Flemish red ale; a cloudy burgundy yeasty color. However, this beer had a nice little bite, with a pinch of something peppery (which was delightfully augmented by the carbonation) and some strong malts that were subtly blended to be incredibly smooth (adding to its drinkability). This beer makes me think of Ghent - it's in Belgium, and it has lots of French Belgium characteristics, but everyone only speaks Flemish.

JulieRFoster, May 18, 2006
Photo of Matthew
4.22/5  rDev +0.2%
look: 4 | smell: 4 | taste: 4.5 | feel: 4 | overall: 4

Light brownish to a rusty orange hues. Big thick creamy frothy white head that settles to leave a thin covering. Lots of yeast setiment, more than I have probably seen in other bottle conditioned beers, this is in spite of a slow careful pour.

Very sweet aromas, mild alchohol, orange peel, sweet raisons, slight hints of peppery spice. The sweet dried fruity aromas are are the most prevalent but laced with subtle complexities.

Very sweet tasting as well, flavors in this brew match the nose very much. Sweet dried fruits, touches of citrus, light spice and a big yeasty characeter.

This is a very drinkable beer considering the alcohol content but is a bit too sweet for my palate to handle more than one, but very enjoyable and incredibley tastey.

Matthew, May 16, 2006
Photo of Pingotas
4.18/5  rDev -0.7%
look: 4.5 | smell: 4.5 | taste: 4 | feel: 4.5 | overall: 4

I've had this several times and my perception curiously changes each time I drink it. Color is a hearty chestnut-auburn hue with a fairly respectable head and lacing to go with it. There is a pungency to the aroma, which is rather pleasant and, like the taste, distinctly citroen-ish. Winter holiday flavors - especially spiciness - are unmistakable, and extrememly tasty. The fizz starts fine, then quickly aggregates, creating a pleasant airiness if you hold it for a while before swallowing. You are physically vetoed from drinking more than a pint or so - a regrettable fact. I get a wallbanger headache from all the de Rocs, which tempers my entry of even higher scores possibly due them. In short, a masterful brew.

Pingotas, May 12, 2006
Photo of sevineyes
4.5/5  rDev +6.9%
look: 4 | smell: 3.5 | taste: 5 | feel: 4.5 | overall: 4.5

Poured from a brown bottle featuring arches on the label.

A: Started with about an inch of dense off-white head. Cloudy pecan in color.

S: Rasins. Sweet berries. Very clean smell. White grapes. Yeast tones. Crabapples. Something like a weak rum in there over time. Overall, not a very strong aroma.

T: Starts somewhat vinous. Leads to dark fruit flavors. Prunes. Tart like sour cherries and taffy. Caramel and toffee. Dark sugars. Sugared rasins. Finishes with dark cherry. Still pick up some berry flavors. Something like dried blueberries. Plum. Aftertaste is a lingering fruit sweet. Something in there like sweet tomato skins.

M: Nice body, not too heavy. Full and wet. Good balance of carbonation. Very smooth. Silky. Get a feel off my tongue like mint leaves would leave.

Overall: This is a dangerous beer. They just slip away so fast, but are just so enjoyable to drink. I really don't pick up on the alcohol hardly at any point. Very powerful flavor that just continues to evolve. Even now I'm finding more complexities to the flavor that I just can't describe. This is definitely not one to miss if you enjoy the style.

sevineyes, May 05, 2006
Photo of sabrills70
3.13/5  rDev -25.7%
look: 3.5 | smell: 3.5 | taste: 3 | feel: 3 | overall: 3

750ml bottle capped green bottle with a best before end of date of 2008. Upon opening foam rolled freely out the top of the bottle. Pours a medium dark mahogony with a big head, longevity OK and just OK lace. Fair amount of sediment in the bottle, but not chunky sediment as I found in the standard brown ale. Lots of old malt smells. Dried dark fruits, brown sugar, yeasty and earthy. Big malt flavors up front again with dried dark fruits. A bit of an "off" flavor but I am not quite sure what it is. It's kind of an weird tartness/sourness, similar to what I had in a batch of homebrew once. Still drinkable but just an off flavor. Alcohol lingers in the finish. Overall an average brew and nothing to write home about. IMHO the standard brown ale is better.

sabrills70, Apr 30, 2006
Photo of DarkerTheBetter
4.63/5  rDev +10%
look: 4.5 | smell: 4.5 | taste: 5 | feel: 3.5 | overall: 4.5

This beer poured a foggy dark brown sugar with a quarter inch of creamy light tan head.

Smells of maple syrup, watermelon, strawberries, rye crisps and a pinch of salt.

Tasted of crisp rhubarb and dark brown sugar/molasses with an extremely dry tangy yeast. A tangy strawberry pops in and out of the flavor along with some strange exotic chocolate-like presence. Finishes a bit like ginger cookies.

The mouth feel is light and frothy with a little too much carbonation that doesn’t do too much for the flavor.

The flavor of this one just shines with quality and intricacy. My review can’t even to begin to describe what’s going on. I’ve read other’s reviews, and I nod and smile and say, “yeah, that’s another way to say it.” It’s one of those flavors that just isn’t in our language. There’s only one way to figure this one out. Try it yourself!!!

DarkerTheBetter, Apr 27, 2006
Abbaye Des Rocs Grand Cru Belgian Special Brown from Brasserie de l'Abbaye des Rocs s.a.
94 out of 100 based on 667 ratings.