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Great Lakes Grand Cru - Great Lakes Brewing Co.

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Great Lakes Grand Cru
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BA SCORE
89
very good

37 Ratings
THE BROS
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no score

(send 'em beer!)
Ratings: 37
Reviews: 23
rAvg: 4.06
pDev: 12.07%
Wants: 4
Gots: 0 | FT: 0
Brewed by:
Great Lakes Brewing Co. visit their website
Ohio, United States

Style | ABV
Belgian Strong Pale Ale |  7.00% ABV

Availability: Rotating

Notes & Commercial Description:
Beer added by: aracauna on 06-06-2004

No notes at this time.
Beer: Ratings & Reviews
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Ratings: 37 | Reviews: 23
Photo of MasterSki
4.15/5  rDev +2.2%
look: 4 | smell: 4 | taste: 4 | feel: 4.5 | overall: 4.5

On-tap at Prairie Moon in Evanston. Served in a bowtie for $7.

A - Served to the brim - no short pours here. There's a thin cap of foam that leaves behind splotches of lace. The body is a light hazed apricot color, with some slow-moving streams of bubbles.

S - Sweet stone fruits and fruity esters, faint banana, a bit of yeast spice, and light candi sugar.

T - Taste is a bit heavier on the spicy and peppery Belgian yeast, although it's still sweet compared to something like Duvel. Light peach and stone fruits along with some cake/bread character. Finish has a bit of coriander and clove - is this an Imperial/Double Wit?

M - Pleasant carbonation, smooth texture, lightly sticky finish, and medium-full body. No obvious alcohol present, although at 7-8% that's not surprising.

D - This is quite nice, although it's not a super unique take on the style. I would have preferred to see Rye of the Tiger or Rackhouse, but this was a nice gesture by GLBC nonetheless. Hope to see more of these brewpub exclusives in Chicago (or at least get some growlers!). I easily drank my glass and would gladly had another if I weren't in a rush.

Photo of superspak
4.25/5  rDev +4.7%

Photo of Stinkypuss
3.67/5  rDev -9.6%
look: 4 | smell: 3.75 | taste: 3.5 | feel: 3.75 | overall: 3.75

On tap at the brewery. Listed on the menu as 7.8% abv 30 IBU

Aroma of wheat and peppery spice. In the taste, wheat, pepper and coriander. Bready malt notes and a dry spice bite. Little presence of hops, which come across earthy if anything. Light dusty yeast notes and grainy malt. Mild but tempered sweetness with the spices and dry orange peel. Medium bodied, crisp and well carbonated with a spice bite. Overall, this is a nice little Belgian style gold. A thoroughly enjoyable rarity from Great Lakes.

Photo of Zaphog
3.75/5  rDev -7.6%

Photo of Dogbrick
4.05/5  rDev -0.2%
look: 4 | smell: 4 | taste: 4 | feel: 4.5 | overall: 4

On tap at the brewpub. Hazy light amber color with a thin and fluffy off-white head that disappears quickly. Nil lacing. Zesty citrus aroma, with a bit of sweet spice. Medium-bodied and very smooth on the tongue with a straightforward sweet and spice balance that interplays with citrusy hops flavor. A bit of alcohol comes through as the glass progresses. The finish is lightly bitter and lingering. For a "regular" Belgian ale this is pretty darn good.

Photo of pathman
4.5/5  rDev +10.8%

Photo of IrishColonial
3.75/5  rDev -7.6%

Photo of Tyrawlings
4/5  rDev -1.5%

Photo of Stevedore
3.75/5  rDev -7.6%

Photo of nrbw23
4.05/5  rDev -0.2%
look: 4 | smell: 4 | taste: 4 | feel: 4.5 | overall: 4

A- Pours a hazy orange color with a thin white head. Head has little retention and leaves some spotty lacing down the glass.

S- Overall a pretty big smell. Smells of a ton of spices, malts, yeast, and fruit.

T- Pretty much exactly what I'd expect and followed the nose really well. It actually reminded me of Holy Moses on steriods. Quite a bit going on here and I'd say rather complex.

M- Lighter side of medium and carbonation was right on.

D- By no means is this my favorite style, but it is right. Its solid for the style just not my favorite.

Photo of Bierguy5
3.83/5  rDev -5.7%
look: 4 | smell: 3.5 | taste: 4 | feel: 3.5 | overall: 4

Pours a hazy orange color with a nice white head. Head disappears after a minute, but leaves some nice patches of lace.

Sweet bread malt up front, with a nice amount of fruity esthers. Maybe some green apple and pear notes. A bit of a Belgian yeasty, spicy feel.

Sweet up front, with a nice bread-like malt similar to other Great Lakes beers. Fruity notes, ripe apples and pears. Slightly earthy and yeasty at the finish, but remains a bit sweet.

Medium body, with a fair amount of carbonation to lighten the body a bit. Just a bit of warmth. Pretty nice beer.

Photo of GrindFatherBob
2/5  rDev -50.7%

Photo of adamette
4.17/5  rDev +2.7%
look: 3.5 | smell: 4 | taste: 4.5 | feel: 4 | overall: 4

"pub exclusive" on tap. This from product description:

"Full bodied Belgian Ale Spiced with Coriander and orange peel with subtle citrus flavor and a complex finish"

A Opaque orange, cloudy, yellow orange with one finger head.

S Citrus, malty

T citrus, malty, complex, interesting, challenging

M Smooth, thick

D Very good to excellent. It is too bad that GLBC (Great Lakes Brewing Company) didn't offer this more widely than just a pub exclusive.

Notes: My favorite GLBC beer so far.

Photo of bsp77
4.25/5  rDev +4.7%
look: 4 | smell: 4 | taste: 4.5 | feel: 4.5 | overall: 4

Serving glass: Poured from tap into Tulip.

Appearance: Hazy orange with very thin white head.

Smell: Bready, orange, some light spice.

Taste: Very bready and fruity. Definite orange. Fairly sweet but the spicy yeast and/or hops keep it in check. Some coriander and clove on the finish.

Feel: Medium to full body, very smooth, moderate carbonation.

Overall: Tastes kind of like a Belgian version of their Christmas Ale, which is a very good thing. Please bottle this in 4-packs!

Photo of aracauna
4/5  rDev -1.5%
look: 4 | smell: 4 | taste: 4 | feel: 4 | overall: 4

This one has a big poofy white head. It's very citrusy with orange and clove. It's very drinkable as well with a good malt backbone. A bit hoppy-bitter for style. Before I even found out that it was basically Holy Moses big brother, I noticed the similarities. Both are excellent beers.

Photo of DarkerTheBetter
4.31/5  rDev +6.2%
look: 3 | smell: 4.5 | taste: 4 | feel: 4.5 | overall: 5

This beer poured a creamy gold banana juice color that was rather cloudy with a dollop of meringue that left tons of drippy lace in my glass.

Smells a bit like banana too with a crisp, sweet plumb and coriander that fades to a numb hop right at the bitter point of the plumb. There’s a spicy black pepper yeast and a touch of honey too.

The spicy dryness shines in the flavor with some stale white bread and a touch of sour black pepper that fades over to a dry fallen pine. A little orange juice leaks out in the finish rounding the trip off with a pleasant creaminess.

This one’s delightfully thick with a little sing of carbonation that helps the bite work its way through.

Wonderfully drinkable, completely un-offending and enticing.

Photo of goodbyeohio
3.89/5  rDev -4.2%
look: 3.5 | smell: 4.5 | taste: 3.5 | feel: 4 | overall: 4

i believe this is a 7.5% abv...

on-tap at the brewpub.. a couple of pints here.

pours orange and murky with a belgian style minimalist head and lacing of white bubbles that lay soupy and thick on the surface. smells yeasty with big orange blossom nose. body is lighter than it looks. a little too much alcohol bite for the abv, but intense, flavorful sweetness.. coriander and floral notes help hide it. finishes real clean with a bit of bitterness to last you through to the next sip. excellent american grasp of a belgian style here.

Photo of mattcrill
4.38/5  rDev +7.9%
look: 4.5 | smell: 4 | taste: 4.5 | feel: 4.5 | overall: 4.5

On-tap at the brewpub.

Appearance: A murky, cloudy orange poor with a tight white sudsy head.

Smell: Some yeasty funk and wheat bread. Not a whole lot going on here but very interesting.

Taste: Orange, coriander, cloves, allspice, maybe some cinnamon, and maple sweetness but that's in the background and not overpowering. A nicely balanced beer. Complex and very enjoying.

Mouthfeel: Medium and slight creamy. Coats the palate and is long in the finish.

Drinkability: Wow...this was gone in an instant! This is nicely done. I haven't had a lot of belgian beers but this is a great interpretation of the style.

Photo of neenerzig
4.35/5  rDev +7.1%
look: 4 | smell: 4 | taste: 4.5 | feel: 4.5 | overall: 4.5

Another wonderful on-tap "pub exclusive" from Great Lakes enjoyed by me a few weeks ago. Reviewed from notes.

This beer is a cloudy orange/amber color. It reminded me of apple cider. White head is a good 1/2 inch thick when drawn before eventually settling to a very thin white ring lining the inside of my glass. Aromas of coriander, banana and orange, sweet Belgian candy, a trace of hops, and bits of clove and pepper. The taste is pretty much the same, along with a nice floral hop flavor balancing out all the sweetness, fruityness, and spice. Has a crisp, full bodied mouthfeel with moderate carbonation. Very good drinkability. I really wish Great Lakes would brew Belgian style ales more often because this one was excellent!

Eric

Photo of shivtim
4.12/5  rDev +1.5%
look: 4 | smell: 4.5 | taste: 4 | feel: 4 | overall: 4

Had this on-tap at the brewpub. Listed at 7.8% ABV.

This is a very hazy straw color. Lots of little particulates. Looks almost like an unfiltered wheat. Small ring of off-white head, and sticky lacing.
Nose is very bready. Lots of yeasts and orange juice. Some orange rind too. Sweet and dense. Nice.
Taste is sweet Belgian sugars, yeasty and sugary citrus. Slight spiciness and lots of orange. Pretty tasty.

Solid mouthfeel and drinkability. A very nice offering from GL.

Photo of NittanyBeerFan
3.75/5  rDev -7.6%
look: 4 | smell: 4 | taste: 3.5 | feel: 3.5 | overall: 4

Poured from the hand pump at TJs into a tulip glass on 6/9. This is the first time that I have had the opportunity to have any Belgian style from a cask setup, so I guess this will be the beer that provides the measuring stick to see if I will try another if the opportunity arises.

The pour is somewhat atypical of what you would see from just about any beer that is hand pumped. The head that forms is more indicative of a highly carbonated Belgian style than it is the 1-2 finger head that an English cask ale would produce. Reaching a full 2 inches in height before being allowed to settle a bit and get topped off, this beer from the start looks like a Belgian. There is some slight haze in an light orangey colored body, something akin to peach or apricot.

The aroma is fully of spice and fruits. Strong clove, white pepper, and coriander are all present, adding to this beer's Belgian pedigree. Apricots, peaches, and even some slight citrusy notes find their way in here, as well. There is a bready sweetness that rounds it out and pulls it all together, too.

On the palate, the spices do start to run away with this. Far more phenolic than the aroma indicated, the clove and white pepper does have a dominating effect on the palate. Warm alcohol also squirms its way into the finish. The stone fruits are less notable, but still present. A touch of sweet candi sugar comes in late, but it is not enough to counteract the dominant spice. I would have hoped for a bit more balance here.

Out of a cask, I don't get the distinctive Belgian effervescence that the yeast so often gives. While the consistency was medium just as a Belgian Strong Pale should be, the overall impression of the texture fell short of what I expected. Belgians are better out of a tap, for sure. I hope I can try this one that way sometime.

Photo of UDbeernut
4.12/5  rDev +1.5%
look: 4 | smell: 4.5 | taste: 4 | feel: 4 | overall: 4

On tap at the glbc tap room, poured into a pint glass

A: orange amber color, slightly hazy, slight head with fair retention

S: light citrus and spice notes, slight yeast and pepper

T: well balanced beer with light caramized malt, citrus, and clove like pepperyness.

M&d: light to medium bodied, like most glbc examples it is drinkable and almost sessionable for higher abv.

Cheers!!!

Photo of Blueribbon666
3.5/5  rDev -13.8%

Photo of letsgopens
4.45/5  rDev +9.6%
look: 4.5 | smell: 4.5 | taste: 4.5 | feel: 4 | overall: 4.5

A friend brought a growler of this BSPA back from a trip to Great Lakes. It pours a very cloudy golden orange with some bright gold highlights. The tall, thick, frothy head holds impressively well and leaves some thick chunky lace.

Super yeasty with lots of herbal hops and fruit: citrus, apricot, banana, along with coriander, clove and faint pepper. Lots of Belgian wheat character. More clove and lemon at the end. Really nice; not just a wheaty banana/clove bomb. Complex and appetizing.

Again super spicy with more coriander and clove. Lots of yeasty wheat fruit; specifically banana, lemon, tangerine, and apricot. A nice amount of floral hops balance out the finish. Really complex and full flavored. Lots of depth.

Slick but turning a bit starchy and semidry in the finish. Low to moderate carbonation allows the mouthfeel to remain a bit heavier and very substantial. Well rounded but remains distinctive in all aspects. Another fantastic selection from Great Lakes.

Photo of BuckSpin
4.37/5  rDev +7.6%
look: 4 | smell: 4.5 | taste: 4.5 | feel: 4.5 | overall: 4

(part of a sampler at the Great Lakes brewpub)

This was the surprise of the session. Poured a warm, cloudy honey amber color with a tight head of off-while foam that laced very nicely. What a wonderful nose! The aromas of citrus, spices and cloves, mildly peppered..this is more intense than Holy Moses!

Its warm and soothing on the tongue, rich in spices, citrus...again more intense than Holy Moses. What is going on here? It evened out and finished beautifully, kinda slick and syrupy on the throat. This was a very nice ale, one that I will keep an eye open for and definitely enjoy more in the future, Definitely worth a try.

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Great Lakes Grand Cru from Great Lakes Brewing Co.
89 out of 100 based on 37 ratings.