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Palm / Palm Speciale | Brouwerij Palm NV

283 Reviews
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Palm / Palm SpecialePalm / Palm Speciale

Brewed by:
Brouwerij Palm NV
Belgium | website

Style: Belgian Pale Ale

Alcohol by volume (ABV): 5.40%

Availability: Year-round

Notes / Commercial Description:
ABV 5.1 to 5.4%

Added by BeerAdvocate on 05-04-2002

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Reviews: 283 | Ratings: 1,029
Photo of patre_tim
3.6/5  rDev +9.1%

A: Golden to amber, some carbonation, a little light yellow head.

S: Smells of malts, sweetness, spice, but much like a typical American lager.

T: Malt, with a slight sweetness, a little spice but mostly like a typical American lager.

M: Light to medium body, with medium to high carbonation.

O: Is it a watered down Belgian or a glorified AA Lager??? I lean towards the later in spite of its classification and that way I am not disappointed. Not nearly the gusto, flavour and impressiveness of others in this category such as Orval, or Petrus. From that perspective it leaves much to be desired. Its not as good as a De Konninik, also in this category. However, I was expecting Labatts and was pleasantly surprised this went beyond that. Worth a try but not too many accolades from me. Would go well with pressed sandwiches that are still hot.

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Photo of CalgaryFMC
3.63/5  rDev +10%

Sampled a pint on tap at Beer Revolution in Calgary. A light golden amber with a half-finger or so of white bubbles on top. Aroma largely fruity, apple, pear, and peach notes yielding a gummy bear-like effect that is accompanied by a light orange and lemon rind citric note. I am puzzled by the lack of spicy notes on both nose and palate. This is a Belgian ale, correct? Drinks light and fizzy like a lager or macro-brewed pale ale, bubblegum fruity and slightly floral. Semi-dry and almost no Belgian yeast phenols, although Micheal Jackson writes that the Palm yeast strain yields a dry orange character and I can certainly taste that here. Some of this citrus carries over into the semi-dry finish. Forgettable when compared to many other Belgian brews although enjoyable enough on a hot patio.

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Photo of mynie
4.18/5  rDev +26.7%
look: 4 | smell: 4 | taste: 4.25 | feel: 4.25 | overall: 4.25

Pours a fairly thick brown with a nice head. Smells of lightly sweet, toasted malt: peat, caramel, bread.

Tastes like it smells: a lot of nice, subtle malt complexities balanced out wonderfully by spicy hops.

Someone told me this is the beer that Fat Tire is based on. I believe them. The malt profiles are quite similar--and quite good--only Palm doesn't have any of that weird, burny dryness that affects the back end of most of New Belgium's brews. A very nice, malty session beer.

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Photo of ordybill
3.99/5  rDev +20.9%
look: 3.75 | smell: 4 | taste: 4 | feel: 4 | overall: 4

I really enjoy Palm, it has a great crisp taste and stands up well as an accompaniment to food or as a solo act. It has a good clean aroma and has a nice golden sheen when poured. There is no aftertaste and pours well. It does not have the full body flavor of its neighbor Heineken but it is very satisfying.

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Photo of JerzDevl2000
3.54/5  rDev +7.3%
look: 3.75 | smell: 3.5 | taste: 3.5 | feel: 3.75 | overall: 3.5

Hard to believe that I never joined the MBA program up at the Cloverleaf Tavern until this week and almost as hard to believe that I never had this beer before. This was they recommend that I start off with on my 45 beer odyssey around the world, so I gave this a go on one of my rare off nights from work. While this wasn't as good as other BPA's that I've had, this was just fine by itself and relatively easygoing on the alcohol as well.

The pour to this was good in appearance and this was served to me in a tulip glass as well. Nice light copper hue to this with a moderately frothy head as well, that faded somewhat quickly. Not a lot of lacing to be seen on the glass but there was enough on the back side as I worked my way through this. A moderate amount of yeast in the aroma, along with some caramel and a pear-apple mix that made feel lighter than I expected it to be. That came out more in the taste, along with a bit of over-carbonation and a rye-like boozy aspect to this. It almost reminded me of a cider with a hint of Belgian sweetness and yeast, along with a hint of stickiness. Went down easily as the light fruit flavors lingered for a while after each sip.

Even though I only had one of these, it would have been possible to down a few more in a sitting. No, this doesn't stack up well compared to the heavier hitters and Trappist beers that fall into this category but as a starter, this worked out fine for me. Some more spice and strength would have enhanced this nicely but I'll probably give this a go again soon, only because it's warm out and it's nice to have a "light" take on a style that can be quite heavy at times!

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Photo of the3rdtriumph
5/5  rDev +51.5%
look: 5 | smell: 5 | taste: 5 | feel: 5 | overall: 5

76? Poor? Preposterous!
This is my new favorite beer!
Poured into a pilsner glass. Looks like a light amber lager. I don't know. Looks run of the mill. But that head is inviting! Super charged (in the words of Ronald Theriot), after a few sips it dies down so you don't get it all over your face. But you can really smell that aroma during those first few sips. If you've ever had a Blegian anything, you'll notice that familiar scent when it first hits your nose. But the aroma as a whole is earthy, grassy, there's some fruit in there... amazing. Did not expect it.
Taste is phenominal. I payed for what I thought and what was priced to be a Heineken competitor, but got so much more. Can't describe it. Just go buy some and try it.
Mouthfeel is crisp, refreshing, but not lacking. The flavor packs a wallop, and it is 5.4% alcohol, a tad stronger than your typical beer it is placed next to in the cooler. After taste is pleasant and sparkly. Some floral hops lingering in the background?
Overall, I'd say get this beer!

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Photo of Pegasus
3.27/5  rDev -0.9%
look: 3.5 | smell: 3.25 | taste: 3.25 | feel: 3.25 | overall: 3.25

Appearance: Lovely light copper in color, very clear, with very slight carbonation, and a small, dense, and persistent off-white head. The lacing is, appropriately, Belgian in its form.

Aroma: Lightly toasted malts, slight caramel, and modest herbal hops comprise the aroma, which is simple, but pleasing.

Taste: Opens with a modest surge of earthy and herbal hops, these overshadow the rest of the taste throughout. Slight caramel and toasted grains soon follow the hops. There is a faint presence of bitter apple later in the taste. Finishes with a mild, lingering flourish of herbal hops, toasted grains, and caramel.

Mouth feel: A bit thin, with slightly sharp carbonation.

Drinkability/notes: Pleasant, an interesting change of pace, would be a pleasant beer for the cooler months, particularly overcast autumn days.

Presentation: Packaged in an eleven point two ounce brown glass Euro-style long-neck bottle, sealed with a pry-off crown, served in a New Belgium Brewing chalice.

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Photo of chinchill
3.31/5  rDev +0.3%
look: 4 | smell: 3 | taste: 3.25 | feel: 3.5 | overall: 3.5

33cl bottle with a BB date of 15 Oct. 2014.

Pour clear amber with waymore visible carbonation bubbles than average. Not surprisingly then, the head has very good retention.

Aroma: earthy (bristish) pilsner

Flavor: nicely balanced mix of bready malts and English hops.

Feel: lively carbonation; dry; medium-light body.

O: A Belgian ale leaning far towards an ESB or pilsner, with only a faint input from Belgian yeast.

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Photo of WunderLlama
3.5/5  rDev +6.1%
look: 3.5 | smell: 3.5 | taste: 3.5 | feel: 3.5 | overall: 3.5

Bottle poured into a snifter

Clear copper russet with a line of bubbles leading to a layer of big bubbles. Settles to a ring of bubbles

Aroma of grassy hops and sweet malts

Malt on the front, slight bitterness on the back of the tongue.

Slight bitterness on the edges and back of the tongue.rush of carbonation on the tongue

Good beer, better in my memory than this tasting. I'd taste it again.

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Photo of mrmagoo157
2.86/5  rDev -13.3%
look: 4 | smell: 3 | taste: 2.5 | feel: 3 | overall: 3

I am trying different brands of this style and found this to be almost misplaced. Although a nice looking amber ale, I found the taste to be out of the norm for the style. It reminded me of a hoppy version of Amber Bock, but with a little more complex ale flavor. The esters and fruitiness of traditional Belgian ale yeasts do not come through in this beer. Some may like it but I will pass for a Leffe Blonde any day...

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Photo of ghisty
3.21/5  rDev -2.7%
look: 3 | smell: 3.25 | taste: 3.25 | feel: 3 | overall: 3.25

appearance- basic. normal beer looking. nothing visually stands out greatly, very little head on the pour, decently carbbed. light. yellow. average.

moreso than appearance this beer has a strong nose, not neccesarily a great one, but it is present, and that says something at least..heavy corn notes, fades out to almost nonexistant nose quickly.

my first impression of its taste is an overwhelming euro lager..
on par with its competitors with a slightly more noticeable ABV,
reasonably refreshing, as with appearance, nothing stands out greatly.

its a euro lager. with zero foam. it burps well, and drinks easily.
i could quickly drink this, even if it a bit flatter than id expected.

if it is a euro you are after, you could do alot worse, but its not outstanding,
everything about it just lacks something, I dont mean to sound negative, as I
easily will be finishing my 6 pack, it's just lacking in charectar, and reminds me of dos equis, which is in my opinion very boring basic beer. this although similar to dos equis is considerably better. it would be a very good beer for the purpose of drinking at a sports event or outdoors, fishing ect, It will not be making it into my regular rotation, but I'd buy it again. there is nothing false or over done in this beer, so overall I'd say despite its low side of the average review, it is slightly better than most euro lagers.. just perhaps a bit too pale and not enough hops or charectar.
a session beer indeed. with its higher ABV.. good party beer.

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Photo of goochflies
2.5/5  rDev -24.2%
look: 3.5 | smell: 2.25 | taste: 2.5 | feel: 2.5 | overall: 2.5

Standard Belgium Ale lacking imagination. Bready, seedy with almost no hops aroma. 1 finger white head that dissipates slowly with no lacing. Lovely amber color. Medium body with oily finish. Very lager like with very little hops bitterness. Gets a bit more complex aroma if you let it warm up a little.

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Photo of Act25
3.34/5  rDev +1.2%
look: 3 | smell: 3.25 | taste: 3.5 | feel: 3.25 | overall: 3.25

This Belgique, like all, definitely MUST warm to be interesting. That said, I think it's probably the Bud of Belgique, as opposed to the 1st craft as claimed, it's brewed to be light and pilsner like which it is with a Begique flare.

You know a beer needs help when you reach for food to complement it because you're unhappy with it alone. In this case I found perfect comlement in Dr Petes Honey Praline Glaze Mustard with pretzels - however, this discovery threatens my waist line.

A: Clear amber in color with a finger high head that quickly dies down. Nice color, plenty of bubbles, no lace. Martinelli apple sparkler? 3.25

S: Aromas of earthy, flowery, and grassy hops but very subtle against bread background. Too subtle and medicinal when cold, so wait and let it warm to bring this belgique character out. It's actually a great pilsner / Kolsch / light style, but not until it warms up. 3.25

T: Really well balanced, but ho-hum. Sessionable. The taste offers grainy malts with notes of caramel malt and bits of apple juice sweetness. Balanced w right amount of bitterness in the finish. Apple juice comes to mind. 3.5

M: It feels light- to medium-bodied and smooth on the palate with a moderate amount of carbonation. Good finish. A fair beer. 3.25

D:Easy but unremarkable. I had to try it, glad I did, but now need to trade some of it away. 3.25

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Photo of mrfrancis
3.63/5  rDev +10%
look: 4 | smell: 3.5 | taste: 3.5 | feel: 4 | overall: 3.75

A: Pours a clear, dark amber with a fluffy, creamy white head that leaves a moderate amount of lacing in the glass.

S: Aromas of caramel, toffee, and brown sugar are most noticeable initially, though they are joined by aromas of honey, herbs, leather, and tobacco as the beer settles.

T: Notes of caramel, toffee, minerals, honey, and biscuit are balanced by notes of tobacco, lemon, herbs, leather, and grass. The finish is decidedly mild and clipped with herbal, tobacco-tinged hop notes mingling with traces of minerals, biscuit, and caramel.

M: Medium-bodied and somewhat oily on the entry, though it dries out a bit on the finish. Carbonation is active and firm. Given the strength of most Belgian ales, I could see this almost being a session beer to many Belgians. Incredibly easy to drink.

O: A very solid Belgian pale ale overall and a readily available and authentic commercially brewed offshoot of the sub-style known as speciale. Worth trying.

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Photo of Ryanm1
3.74/5  rDev +13.3%
look: 3.5 | smell: 3.75 | taste: 3.75 | feel: 3.75 | overall: 3.75

I want to call this Belgium's version of Budweiser but people would nail me to a cross comparing a lager to an ale. This golden ale from belgium poured out a solid amount of white lacing while not much bubbling appeared in the liquid itself. It was a yellow-ish dark golden color. Mild to sweet smelling, and doesn't have a prescence of high alcohol. No flavoring at the finish. This beer lacks in the taste department. A bit of a session beer with no distinct characteristics.

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Photo of dacrza1
3.68/5  rDev +11.5%
look: 3.5 | smell: 3.5 | taste: 3.75 | feel: 3.75 | overall: 3.75

DATE TASTED: November 16, 2013... GLASSWARE: Ommegang stem... OCCASION: celebrating the unseasonably warm afternoon of football, Christmas lights and fun with my sons... APPEARANCE: opaque, deep golden amber body with a soft, foamy thin white head that rings uniformly; lacing is cirrus cloud and ocean crest... AROMA: aromatic, fruity--sour apple and tart candy... PALATE: light, fizzy as cider; possesses some staying power in the mouth, but rather dry like champagne...TASTE: mildly tart and pleasantly crisp with little exchange of flavor in the exhale; an underlying hint of lager malts, but inevitably this is a clean basket of fruit with enough hops to hint at an ale...OVERALL: This has to be one of those handful of brews I have passed numerous times, always intending to try and never quite trying; its inclusion in the "Great Beers of Belgium" forced my hand, and I am pleased to find it a serviceable, light, cheaper version of Unibroue's wonderful Ephemere (which announces its apple right up front); a single notch below the Estaminet pilsner in the sample, and two below the Rodenbach--but beer drinking isn't really a competition, right?...

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Photo of FLima
2.81/5  rDev -14.8%
look: 2.75 | smell: 3 | taste: 2.75 | feel: 2.75 | overall: 2.75

Copper color with a thin head with short retention.
To my surprise it smelled a bit like an adjunct lager, immediately checked the label and saw the corn addition. Though it is not entirely unpleasant. Notes of caramels, bready malt, banana and floral hops.
Spicy flavor with tangy notes. Hints of minerals, pepper, cloves, floral hops and corn.
Light to watery body with good carbonation.
A big disappointment, they are probably trying to get Stella’s market share. But is even worst. Stay away.

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Photo of GreesyFizeek
3.77/5  rDev +14.2%
look: 4.25 | smell: 3.5 | taste: 3.75 | feel: 3.75 | overall: 4

On tap at Victoire in Rochester, NY.

Pours a clear orange, with a one inch head, and nice foamy lacing down the glass.

Smells bready and caramelly, with a touch of typical Belgian yeast.

Tastes a bit grainy, but mostly caramelly, toasty, and bready, with some spicy Belgian yeast flavors, and a bit of alcohol.

Light bodied, smooth, and crisp.

A simple, tasty Belgian beer. Would get it again.

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Photo of rangerred
3.14/5  rDev -4.8%
look: 3 | smell: 3.25 | taste: 3 | feel: 3.75 | overall: 3

Had on tap in a pint glass.

Pours a clear dark copper with a thin one finger head. Not that impressive in terms of head retention or lacing.

Aroma has some banana yeasty notes typical of a Belgian ale. There is quite a bit of bread in there too but not much in the way of hops. Maybe a little toast.

Bready malt flavor along with some banana and light yeast. Some very light toast and a very smooth wheat-like mouthfeel. There is a very light and drying bitterness.

Overall, a very uninteresting beer. It is better than a good deal of Euro lagers but probably the bottom of the barrel as far as Belgian ales are concerned. Not one to waste your time with.

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Photo of StonedTrippin
3.61/5  rDev +9.4%
look: 4 | smell: 3.5 | taste: 3.5 | feel: 3.75 | overall: 3.75

not sure why this is rated so low, I like everything about it. the pour is gorgeous, clear pale red color with an inch of white fluffy head in a proper palm globe. bubbles shoot up and tickle the nose like a soda pop. the nose on this is lighter than expected, not a high dose of Belgian yeast and rich red malt I expected, but rather an understated mix of both. the malts aren't sweet at all, gentle and earthy, and the hops are floral and subtle as well. the yeast gives this beer a great lightness of feel, and an easy drinkability. sure its not the most dynamic flavor profile out there, especially coming from the beer motherland, but this is a perfectly sessionable beer, far superior to so many American reds. its got a very clean feel and finish, refreshing. overall this beer probably deserves a little more respect, although ive never had the bottled version and the tap might make it a whole lot better.

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Photo of BradMacMullin
3.01/5  rDev -8.8%
look: 3.5 | smell: 3 | taste: 2.75 | feel: 3.75 | overall: 3

Had it at Trattoria Newbury that has a $3 draft night all the time. So I reviewing this considering it was cheap. Good start. Pours an amber color from what I can see. The smell is mass market lagerish. This was a beer that stayed well carbonated. Trying to stay positive. Taste is kind of yeasty, a little malty with a chemical kind of taste. This is a very poor beer that thankfully has Belgium on its name. Reminder to me. Stop ordering this!

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Photo of barczar
3.38/5  rDev +2.4%
look: 4 | smell: 3.5 | taste: 3.25 | feel: 3.5 | overall: 3.25

Pours a brilliant golden with a frothy cream head that dissipates slowly, leaving modest lacing.

Floral and spicy hops accompany lightly toasted malt and grainy sweetness.

Light Belgian yeast character begins the flavor profile and is overwhelmed by toasted grain. The finish is fairly dry and bready.

Body is moderate, with moderate carbonation.

Lighter in flavor than expected. The malt character dominates, but I anticipated more yeast contribution.

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Photo of microbrewlover
3.44/5  rDev +4.2%
look: 3.75 | smell: 3.5 | taste: 3.5 | feel: 3.25 | overall: 3.25

This brew pours a bright red/copper color with a one finger fluffy white head which does not last long. Light carbonation and very light lacing.

The smell in funky yeast, apples and nutty. Some light piney and peppery hops.

The taste follows the nose with a funky yeast and sweet malt taste up front then a slightly sour apple taste followed by the piney and light peppery hops on the backend.

The mouthfeel is chewy and nutty. Slightly oily on the backend.

Overall this is not a bad beer but it does not have me jumping for joy either. I don't hate it but I don't love it.

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Photo of WoodBrew
3.4/5  rDev +3%
look: 3.5 | smell: 3.5 | taste: 3.5 | feel: 3 | overall: 3.25

Palm is a easy drinking euro style lager. Has light body with good carbonation. Poured clear with white head...not much lace. The scent has a slight breadiness to it. The taste was evenly balanced....overall...its decent.

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Photo of PorterLambic
2.94/5  rDev -10.9%
look: 3.5 | smell: 2.5 | taste: 3 | feel: 3.25 | overall: 3

Arrives a dark golden honey/amber color. Short-lived white head leaves no lace.
Smell is weak but with notes of malt, raisins, green apple, and yeast. Well balanced if not pronounced.
Taste is better with the same notes present. Malt first, yeast and hops, light raisin and green apple. Balance is still good but not as good as the nose.
Almost medium body, lightish effervescence. Neither warming nor especially drying, just middle-of-the-road. Won't search for it won't say no to a free one.

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Palm / Palm Speciale from Brouwerij Palm NV
76 out of 100 based on 283 ratings.