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Saxo - Brasserie Caracole

Not Rated.
SaxoSaxo

Displayed for educational use only; do not reuse.
BA SCORE
87
very good

333 Ratings
THE BROS
89
very good

(view ratings)
Ratings: 333
Reviews: 224
rAvg: 3.9
pDev: 11.79%
Wants: 10
Gots: 15 | FT: 0
Brewed by:
Brasserie Caracole visit their website
Belgium

Style | ABV
Belgian Strong Pale Ale |  8.00% ABV

Availability: Year-round

Notes/Commercial Description:
No notes at this time.

(Beer added by: kbub6f on 02-21-2002)
Beer: Ratings & Reviews
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Ratings: 333 | Reviews: 224 | Display Reviews Only:
Photo of danadeny
3.75/5  rDev -3.8%
look: 4 | smell: 3 | taste: 4 | feel: 3.5 | overall: 4

I would say that Saxo is this brewery's basic ale. I say this because this ale is very basic and solid. Nothing crazy, and no surprises, basically what you would expect when you hear Belgian Strong pale Ale. It pours a frothy white head. The color is golden yellow and hazy. The smells of orange, lemon and yeast are present. The taste is different than the smell would indicate. The taste is earthy, musty, and spicy. Not much fruit taste. The mouth feel is crisp, clean and satisfying. There is a hint of the 8% ABV in the middle. Overall a solid representation of a not so fruity Belgian strong pale ale.

danadeny, Jul 26, 2004
Photo of rajendra82
3.58/5  rDev -8.2%
look: 4 | smell: 4 | taste: 3.5 | feel: 3 | overall: 3.5

The beer came in a 330 ml brown longneck bottle that had a nice art deco label. The serving temperature of 46˚ F on the back label is too low in my opinion. I drank mine at 65 ˚ F to bring out more flavor nuances. The body was slightly hazy golden pale with a medium but constant carbonation. The head was rich and rocky and left a good deal of lace. Aroma was sharp and yeasty with some floral tones. The taste was well attenuated, lemony tart, and quite dry, with a lot of Belgian farmhouse funk. There was also a peppery pungency to the aftertaste. The alcohol was very well hidden and would never have been guessed to be as high as it was (8% ABV). This was one of the first arrivals on July 1st in Georgia, and I picked it up that day. Ironically now we have such abundance of selection here, I am finally getting around to it. Good things come to those who wait I guess.

rajendra82, Jul 22, 2004
Photo of jdhilt
4/5  rDev +2.6%
look: 4 | smell: 4 | taste: 4 | feel: 4 | overall: 4

Pours with a two-finger white head that stays, leaving sme lace. Moderate carbonation. Medium bodied. Cloudy pale, amber color, nose is raisiny. Malty but taste is raisiny. Finish is mellow but as it warms flavors are more intense. $3.50 for a 330ml bottle from Colonial Spirits, Acton, Ma.

jdhilt, Jul 05, 2004
Photo of assurbanipaul
4.45/5  rDev +14.1%
look: 4.5 | smell: 4 | taste: 4.5 | feel: 4 | overall: 5

Pours a bright orange with a tall, white fluffy head. Nose is bitter malt, some hops, faint grass, strong lemon rind and spices. Microbubbles streaming throughout the glass.

Taste is bitter and astringent, like unsweetened orange juice. Light, blonde malts but lots of spice with yeast, citrus, lime, peppery flavors. At first, what impresses me as chlorine or cleanser off-flavors but after a while they seem to blend in with the greater profile.

After a little more and it warms a bit, the spices blend a lot better with the malt profile. An orange hoppiness comes through that complements the spices very well. Reminds me of a honey/lemon juice mix Mom used to make for sore throats. Another very complex brew with a kind of "in-your-face" brashness about it.

Medium on the palate, lots of body, finishes clean with little aftertaste. Absolutely no trace of alcohol flavors in the mix, extremely drinkable. Your palate comes out well-scrubbed by this brew. I like BeerAngel's "Belgian IPA" descriptor for this one.

assurbanipaul, May 31, 2004
Photo of daledeee
4.13/5  rDev +5.9%
look: 4.5 | smell: 4.5 | taste: 4 | feel: 4 | overall: 4

Pours a nice frothy head with cloudy yellow body. Nose is unique. I think spicy pear, but something else I will find as I drink a few more of this beer.

Taste is hoppy and fruity. Green apple and grapes. A rather dry finish.

This is a unique good tasting beer.

daledeee, Apr 11, 2004
Photo of Mitchster
4.35/5  rDev +11.5%
look: 4.5 | smell: 4.5 | taste: 4.5 | feel: 4 | overall: 4

11.2 oz bottle. 8% ABV. Bottle has the "Belgian Paradise Beer" insignia on the label.

Pours to a clear golden with a slight yeast-haze, forming a tall, rocky white head with a delicate texture, great retention and honeycomb lacing. Adding the silty yeast gives it a milky glow. Carbonation is strong with a firm release of gas upon opening the bottle. Aroma is mouthwatering...sweet/tart fruits, Belgian Funk, dusty basement, sticky sweet pale malts, apples, a suggestion of mead. The taste echoes the aroma exactly. There is a well-balanced bready sweetness with a large amount of phenolic spice in the middle, akin to a very good Abbey ale. The tartness is rather mild, though I could stand to have more. The mouthfeel is spritzy with a medium-light body. The finish is spicy and lingering with sweet malts, honey, and vanilla. There is an odd mint & erythromycin bitterness in the aftertaste, however I need to concentrate to detect it. Alcohol is only perceptable as a peppery bite in the finish and a pleasant buzz. As it warms, the flavor profile remains stable.

This is a solid, classy brew that I could see myself buying again. The finish is a little wierd, but all in all, this was a very enjoyable beer.

Mitchster, Apr 09, 2004
Photo of BeerAngel
3.3/5  rDev -15.4%
look: 4 | smell: 4 | taste: 3 | feel: 3.5 | overall: 3

Pours a brilliantly clear golden color with a massive head and also has a large swarm of bubbles racing to the top as if I'd dropped an alka-seltzer in the bottom of it. The smell of spicey fruit, yeast, malt, and alcohol make up the aroma. The taste has a sharp carb/hop bite off the starting line resembling sticking your tongue to a 9-volt battery and slowly tapers off into a light fruit and spice with yeast and alcohol in the background. It is over-carbonated in my opinion as it creates an almost IPA/Belgian version of a style beer. I believe the flavor would benefit from less carbonation in a big way. It is a medium bodied beer that finishes slightly sweet. I'm a little disappointed in this one. Op uw gezonheid!

BeerAngel, Mar 06, 2004
Photo of AbePhroman
4.03/5  rDev +3.3%
look: 4 | smell: 3.5 | taste: 4.5 | feel: 4 | overall: 3.5

Was struggling deciding whether to buy more Chimay or try this out. So I gave it a shot. $5.99 for 750ml bottle. I like the pic of the snail guy.

Poured a clear gold with a nice fizzy head. Smelled very nice. Fruitiness abundant. Tastes the same with some spices mixing well with the hops. I had this with dinner and finished the rest with a buddy. A good Belgian pale ale.

AbePhroman, Dec 08, 2003
Photo of crookedhalo
4.15/5  rDev +6.4%
look: 4 | smell: 4.5 | taste: 4 | feel: 4.5 | overall: 4

Cork dated 06/2001bottling. Initially pours a perfect pilsener color, but through stages of decanting the entire bottle, it becomes a hazy orangy gold colored brew. Smell is rather Duvelish, light musty and citrusy hop notes that comes across with a clean effervescence that shines in the aroma. Tastes smooth and sweet, with a finish consistent with a Belgian blond, slightly on the drier side. Drinkability is very good.

crookedhalo, Dec 01, 2003
Photo of kbub6f
3.3/5  rDev -15.4%
look: 3.5 | smell: 2.5 | taste: 3.5 | feel: 3.5 | overall: 3.5

A big, white foamy, smooth head caps the pale, gold, slightly hazy body. Plenty of sediment. The smell is somewhat sour... some apples, some barbershop. The front is spicy/sour, leading through a tingly, fizzy middle to a dry, bitter, peppery finish. Alcohol is present. This has a little more flavor than the Troublette, but I still find it just a bit one-dimensional.

kbub6f, Nov 21, 2003
Photo of BeerBard
4.33/5  rDev +11%
look: 4 | smell: 4 | taste: 4.5 | feel: 4 | overall: 4.5

Excellent Belgian! Yellow-gold elixir emitting hints of cloves and fruit. Does what a beer should do...satisfy the senses. Nice weight and taste balance. Mouthfeel's held back by the bit-too-bubbly (Brittany-like) affront (...speaking of which, I'd prefer having 130 pounds of this Belgian in front of me than 130 hours of that pre-frontal-lobotomied Brittany). Well! Compares well to many other Belgian classic beauties out there for a decent (relatively equal) price. That's the beer I'm talking about now.
Boy Howdy! This sweet and yeasty blond certainly did me in for the night tonight at least. Good Night! Yow!

BeerBard, Nov 05, 2003
Photo of GCBrewingCo
4.2/5  rDev +7.7%
look: 4 | smell: 4.5 | taste: 4 | feel: 4 | overall: 4.5

The appearance is hazy and pale golden. The aroma is spice up front, and sweet fruit in the background. Also present in the aroma is lemon. The taste is sweet yet hinted with spice and then the finish is dry. The mouthfeel is big enough to mask the 8% ABV. In fact the alcohol is very understated making this a beer with very good drinkability.

GCBrewingCo, Oct 25, 2003
Photo of Morris729
4.55/5  rDev +16.7%
look: 4.5 | smell: 4.5 | taste: 4.5 | feel: 4 | overall: 5

Pours a deep hazy golden color with a magnificent billowing white head that very slowly gives way to a thick and creamy lace. Nose is sweet fruit and fragrant lemon zest with some milder notes of yeast and peppery spice. Moderate in body with a lively and spritzy mouthfeel. Taste begins fruity with a good amount of spice (mostly coriander) followed by a somewhat earthy woodiness. Next comes a bit of grainy yeasts and a good deal of lemon tartness and crispness leading towards a bite of white pepper and a dry finish. A very fine Belgian ale to be had here and dangerously drinkable despite the 8% ABV.

Morris729, Sep 11, 2003
Photo of stcules
2.95/5  rDev -24.4%
look: 3 | smell: 3.5 | taste: 3 | feel: 2.5 | overall: 2.5

Compact foam, with a medium persistence.
The colour is blonde-orange, with some yeast in suspension.
In the smell it can remember a little a wit bie, with notes of fresh flower, light spices (pepper, and maybe coriander).
The alcohol (8%) is well hidden, the body is medium.
Taste is again spicy (pepper, anise), and citric.
After a while, when the beer is more warm, the smell is less good: it becomes more heavy...

stcules, Jul 27, 2003
Photo of Darkale
4.03/5  rDev +3.3%
look: 4.5 | smell: 4 | taste: 4 | feel: 4 | overall: 4

11.2 ounce bottle, slightly smaller than the usual American brown beer bottle, with a cute snail on the label, holding a saxophone aloft.

Bright and frothy white head with powerful lacing. The beer pours beautifully, creating a lumpy and broad head that never quite fades completely. Cloudy gold body.

Aroma is musty, yeasty, and slightly spicy.

Mouthfeel is just a bit chewy, and the taste is tart but light, with an edge that mixes sourness, hoppiness, and spice.

This is a pleasant strong pale ale. Perhaps not my favorite, and perhaps not my favorite Caracole, but a respectable beer that I would certainly have again.

Darkale, Jun 03, 2003
Photo of Naerhu
4.1/5  rDev +5.1%
look: 4 | smell: 4.5 | taste: 4 | feel: 4 | overall: 4

Saxo
pale gold opaque with luscious pure white lace
very strong sweet malt aroma with a tame floral background.
Spice and pale malt with forward sweetness. Actually the sweetness is a little much for me and gets in the way of the drink ability. Grainy heaviness really complex, but at the same time balanced so the result is a medium bodied brew. Corriander flavors also a little heavy fo rme.

Naerhu, May 17, 2003
Photo of hotstuff
3.43/5  rDev -12.1%
look: 3 | smell: 4 | taste: 3.5 | feel: 3 | overall: 3

I found this brew to have a fruity and a citrusy aroma to it which I like. It had a medium head on it. There was a lot of carbonation in this brew. In my opinion this brew had a bitter aftertaste to it. All in all this brew was drinkable. It was not a drain pour. Which is not to say that I would drink this particular brew anytime soon though.

hotstuff, Apr 21, 2003
Photo of TheDM
3.53/5  rDev -9.5%
look: 3 | smell: 3.5 | taste: 3.5 | feel: 4 | overall: 3.5

Cork dated 06-2002. This brew pours a medium white head of all sized bubbles that leave a fair lacing. It has a fruity citrusy aroma and a cloudy dark yellow color to its body with carbonation rising up the side of the glass. It has a fizzy fruity citrusy taste. It is very smooth with only a slight bitterness in its aftertaste. All in all a decent brew.

TheDM, Apr 17, 2003
Photo of Garin
3.85/5  rDev -1.3%
look: 3.5 | smell: 4.5 | taste: 3.5 | feel: 4 | overall: 4

I carefully cooled the bottle, letting the yeast settle for a day or two. Then, as I poured it out in the glass, the huge foamy head challenged my pouring abilities! I managed to keep most of the yeast safely in the bottle at the end of it all.

In the glass, the colour was a pale and slightly murky golden yellow. The head eventually calmed, leaving some thick, ropy, occasional lacing. Aromas of honey, banana, and coconut were notable, with a hint of something citrusy underneath.

The flavours were rich and warm. The tropical flavours were nicely countered with bitter flavours. Maybe you'll all think this is too "precious", but I swear the bitterness reminds me of lemon pith. The carbonation was lively, adding to the zing, and ensured that the slightly spicy clove flavours didn't become cloying. Overall, the mouthfeel was full and lush, without being thick and syrupy (again, thank the carbonation and the bitterness for that).

Final thoughts? This is a nice interesting ale. I really enjoy the estery flavours, especially when they're not overpowering -- and here they definitely weren't. If I were to suggest an improvement perhaps the slightest touch of sweetness (so you'd hardly notice it) would make it feel even fuller. I wouldn't hesitate to buy this one again.

Garin, Apr 13, 2003
Photo of dmarch
4.35/5  rDev +11.5%
look: 5 | smell: 5 | taste: 4 | feel: 4 | overall: 4.5

This highly carbonated blond ale pours a clear golden color with a quarter inch head that lasted the entire time it took me to drink. The citrusy aroma was exceptonal and the citrus notes came through in the taste as well. The high alcohol also came through in the taste. The carbonation made this a very drinkable and refreshing beer, but with the high alcohol content I'd say this is pretty dangerous. I could see myself drinking several of these before the alcohol hits me.

dmarch, Apr 07, 2003
Photo of mzwolinski
4.47/5  rDev +14.6%
look: 4 | smell: 4 | taste: 4.5 | feel: 4.5 | overall: 5

Mostly clear, gold in color with a moderate sized head. The aroma is rather tart, with hints of banana and green apple. Flavor is very smooth, and wonderfully balanced. Wheaty with hints of lemon, mildly spicy throughout, and finished with a gentle touch of herbal hops. Very flavorful for a blond. Body is fairly creamy and a bit viscous in the swallow. A really nice, very drinkable beer. Can't believe the ABV is as high as it is!

mzwolinski, Apr 07, 2003
Photo of importguy
3.95/5  rDev +1.3%
look: 4 | smell: 4 | taste: 4 | feel: 3.5 | overall: 4

The labels are enjoyable. SAXO comes from the fact that the Saxsaphone (Adolf Saxo) was invented by a local from Dinant where the beer comes from.

The colour was nice yellow milky with some sediment. The smell made me think there would be a more spicy flavour, but I found it was more of a sour flavour with a hint of fruit and spicy notes.

A very drinkable blonde, hut at 8% you need to be careful. I like it cooled in the fridge. A definate addition to my inventory.

importguy, Apr 01, 2003
Photo of GreenCard
3.88/5  rDev -0.5%
look: 4 | smell: 3.5 | taste: 3.5 | feel: 4 | overall: 5

750 ml corked bottle purchased at Whole Foods in Coral Springs, FL.

Appearance: straw color, thick lustrous pure white head w/ great retention, great lacing, can't judge the clarity because the bottle sediment got stirred up in transit

Aroma: a pleasing floral hoppiness, some malt background and a slight tart note

Flavor: sweetness followed by an immediate tasty hop flavor and some bitterness, coriander comes in strong in the finish but not overpowering, a tart and sweet finish, but a tart/bitter aftertaste

Mouthfeel: light-bodied, crisp carbonation, some acidity, very refreshing, and very drinkable (the 7.2% abv is hard to detect)

GreenCard, Mar 11, 2003
Photo of canucklehead
3.95/5  rDev +1.3%
look: 4 | smell: 4 | taste: 4 | feel: 3.5 | overall: 4

British Columbia doesn't see too many Belgian beers so I was
delighted to see a new offering called Saxo on the shelves. It came
in a small 225ml bottle for $2.75 Canadian and had a great painting
of a bespectacled person in a snail's shell.

The head was huge with mid sized bubbles that settled nicely after a few
minutes. The colour was a tea-like orange hue that was darker than
the description of "Blonde beer" on the label.

I really liked the nose as it had those typical Belgian esters that I
find in doubles and triples. The taste was big and full of complex flavours that combined well with the 8% alc. kick. If you see this
beer pick it up as it was a great winter warmer after a day of sking.

canucklehead, Mar 10, 2003
Photo of PatandDavid
4.35/5  rDev +11.5%
look: 3.5 | smell: 4 | taste: 4.5 | feel: 4.5 | overall: 4.5

This is interesting...I am drinking the Organic Version of Saxo...and it says clearly on the bottle: Biere Blond, Alc. 8% vol. It's also a 33cl bottle.

Picked this up at an organic trade show in Germany, I happened to be walking past the Belgian section and did an extreme doubletake because there it was: a booth featuring Organic Belgian Beers. Yes, I made them go find the guy running the booth, and had a good chat with him (Let me know if anyone wants to be a distributor).

Anyway, he very nicely gave me two bottles of the Organic Saxo, along with two more of a beer I've yet to review. He would have given me glasses, but was afraid they would break...

Pours a dark yellow color with a very impressive head, which did die down a bit. Smell was spicy, grassy, very pleasant. A very full-bodied beer to drink, I really enjoyed that. Not watery at all. Very smooth. The taste is not overwhelming, or screaming out this flavor or that flavor. I would recommend this for someone who wants to drink a smooth, full-bodied beer that is amazing light tasting at the same time. Definitely would drink again, no question.

PatandDavid, Feb 26, 2003
Saxo from Brasserie Caracole
87 out of 100 based on 333 ratings.