Pisgah Baptista | Pisgah Brewing Co.

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Pisgah BaptistaPisgah Baptista
Very Good
85 Ratings
Pisgah BaptistaPisgah Baptista

Brewed by:
Pisgah Brewing Co.
North Carolina, United States

Style: Belgian Strong Pale Ale

Alcohol by volume (ABV): 11.50%

Availability: Winter

Notes / Commercial Description:
No notes at this time.

Added by GCBrewingCo on 12-19-2006

User Ratings & Reviews
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Ratings: 85 |  Reviews: 64
Reviews by farrago:
Photo of farrago
4.02/5  rDev +1.8%
look: 4 | smell: 4.5 | taste: 4 | feel: 4 | overall: 3.5

Two fingers of bone white, super-delicate foam, as active as a beehive, causing it to disintegrate swiftly, a few fluffy streaks of lacing left behind. Translucent, semi-hazy liquid, mostly a copper orange which fades to a metallic yellow at the rims, few visible bubbles. Fruit-driven nose of concentrated, dried fruit in style apricot, pear, peach, nectarine, banana fruit with sweet cinnamon and clove spice, orange marmalade, honey and cane sugar, pastry dough, wisely eschews weight for lift in your nostrils. Medium-bodied yet with great traction across the palate, never heavy but has an insistent medium-firm grip. Broad fruit spectrum of pineapple, papaya, banana, nectarine, melon, apricot, pear, all with a caramelized brown sugar, honey and cotton candy coating. The cinnamon, nutmeg spice as well as spiced orange keep the overall feel light and bouncy. Even with its admirable grip, the carbonation whipped up sufficiently to create a musk, if not perfume, in the mouth. There's a kind of sugary innocence about the brew, however, the sweetness does begin to tire you out after some time. (December 2009 bottling)

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More User Reviews:
Photo of BeerAdvocate
3.13/5  rDev -20.8%
look: 3.5 | smell: 3 | taste: 3 | feel: 3 | overall: 3.5

Beer review from BA Mag Sep 2007.

Everyone should have a chance to try a creation like Baptista--plus, it's organic, so what have you got to lose?

Dark golden-amber color displays perfect clarity as scores of bubbles rush to the top. Full crowning of head with a fine beaded lacing from its high level of carbonation. Aromas of raw sugarcane, ripe peach, apricot and a kiss of black pepper. Smooth and creamy, with a thick body where the carbonation slowly rolls off the palate. Malt flavors range from bready to almost cake-like; a little on the sweet side to start but with enough hops to balance. A little phenolic, but more herbal/medicinal than bubble gum. Alcohol is noticeable and warming, with faint rum, vanilla and peachy notes. Finishes with a lingering alcohol and a drying maltiness.

This is a sipper for sure, and certainly a beer that will become more interesting if cellared. For a pairing, try ripe figs with a creamy bleu cheese.

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Photo of marvin213
2.61/5  rDev -33.9%
look: 3.5 | smell: 2.5 | taste: 2.5 | feel: 3 | overall: 2.5

A little on the light side, it's easy to see thru the light brown liquid. The base is a caramel-coated green apple, and that's pretty cool! I suppose one big hit here involves the insufficient Belgian yeast. As others have noted, it's a little on the sweet side. The bready maltiness is subtle at best. It is indeed overboard on the sweet side. I don't wholly grasp all the chemistry involved, but what if more (better?) Belgian yeast were to eat up on this caramel candy even more? Would we have a higher ABV, spicier BSDA...or might we end up with more of an English barleywine? Pisgah can absolutely offer up some dope ass beers--and this one's okay--but it's a relative miss from them.

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Photo of pwoods
4.23/5  rDev +7.1%
look: 4.5 | smell: 4 | taste: 4.5 | feel: 4 | overall: 4

Thanks to Mikesgroove and Unclejedi for the bottles.

750 corked and caged brown bottle, poured into a snifter. Review from notes from this past fall.

A: Golden straw pour with some good hazing. Strong head holds. Decent lacing.

S: Lots of Belgian spices and yeasty esters. Fruity, apples, apricot.

T/M: More spices and yeasty flavors but with a good Belgian sweetness. The fruits are much more tart and acidic than in the nose and adds great depth. Body is medium with strong carbonation.

D: Tasty and refreshing with basically no noticeable alcohol(11.5%?)

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Photo of IntriqKen
4.01/5  rDev +1.5%
look: 5 | smell: 4 | taste: 4 | feel: 4.5 | overall: 3.5

Pours a very pretty, slightly hazy, peach color in the glass with a white head that melts to a sticky ring.

Aromas of sweet citrus, tobacco, bubblegum, spices, biscuit yeast.

Flavor is lightly sweet oranges, bubblegum, lots of white pepper, and assorted spices such as cardomon, etc. Not overpowering but definitely present.

Aftertaste is bitter orange. Bubblegum also comes through in the aftertaste. Lots of alcohol warmth as would be expected.


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Photo of AKBelgianBeast
4.04/5  rDev +2.3%
look: 3 | smell: 4 | taste: 4 | feel: 4 | overall: 4.5

Thanks to mikesgroove for the trade

Pours a clear orange/yellow with little head that dissappears quick. The nose is nice spice and dark fruit. Taste follows the nose with a good amount of belgian spice and yeast flavor with good fruit taste, but not as deep or dark as I prefer for this style. The finish is very smooth and peppery with some hints of apple. spices dominate here, reminds me (taste not color) of maudite.The mouthfeel is just a bit thin, but thicker than I had expected by the look of this brew. Great drinkability as the abv does not show up whatsoever. Good beer, one of the best organics I have ever had for sure. Props to mike for the trade.

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Photo of Sammy
3.5/5  rDev -11.4%
look: 3.5 | smell: 3.5 | taste: 3.5 | feel: 3.5 | overall: 3.5

Atlantic Ale meeting. I found this overated, also funky, apple juice. Thin mouthfeel. Some soapy head and lacing. Some spiciness, high alcohol noticeable, lemon peel astringency, a dash of pepper, and the barnyard odour, and just didn't go down that well.

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Photo of augustgarage
3.24/5  rDev -18%
look: 3.75 | smell: 4 | taste: 2.75 | feel: 3 | overall: 3.25

Thanks to (I think) mikesgroove for this one! Poured from a caged-and-corked 750mL bottle into my Troubadour tulip. 2007 vintage...

Unique color - a moderately cloudy persian orange body, with a milky ring of froth. Not much of a head, but superior retention for the ABV and age. Delicate sandy lacing.

Deeply funky vinous aroma with rose hips, melon, cork and vanilla in the background. Floral, estery, and unique.

Very strange palate entry - big waves of bubble-gum, cotton candy, and a hint of citrus. Very mild spicy hops and a background of clean malt try but fail to balance out the sugars which are only kept from being undrinkable thanks to the complexity of the yeast. Some spice throughout (can't place them, maybe cardamom?), and a candy-coated finish.

Rich almost syrupy mouth-feel with decent carbonation.

Spices and sweetness add some interesting flavor and aroma, but they substantially overwhelm the base ingredients. A well preserved but weird beer.

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Photo of dirtylou
4.37/5  rDev +10.6%
look: 4 | smell: 4.5 | taste: 4.5 | feel: 4.5 | overall: 4

750ml bottle, split with the lady during the ncaa tournament

bottle #1/2 of this offering in my cellar

appearance: poured into a de konink chalice...medium straw-golden, soapy white froth with light retention

smell: candied sugar, honey, fresh yeast bursts, banana and clove, dashes of pepper

taste: love this one from pisgah...full bodied with a big alcohol warming...apricot and peach, candied sugars, tons of sticky honey, fresh yeast, lemon zest, bubblegum, fresh hops...very rich and very impressive

mouthfeel: rich, full bodied, alcohol warming

drinkability: nice

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Photo of tempest
4.1/5  rDev +3.8%
look: 4 | smell: 4 | taste: 4 | feel: 4 | overall: 4.5

Thanks to Brentk56 for the trade. Interesting, an organic Belgian strong. Dated 12/07, drink by 12/2019.

Pours a clear blond with a fluffly white head. The aroma has a hint of vinegar, like white wine, along with sweet bread. The flavor is mellow, no hint of booze, with light spices like white pepper and corriander. There's a both hints of lemon peel and candi, but not a lot of fruit really. This Belgian focused on the phenols, and while the flavor isn't the most complex, the spices and flavors present are excellent. I should also add the drinkability bordered on dangerous. At first sip I couldn't tell this was nearly 12%. Kudos to Pisgah.

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Photo of nickd717
4.19/5  rDev +6.1%
look: 3.5 | smell: 4.5 | taste: 4 | feel: 4 | overall: 4.5

Bomber thanks to bring. I had been wanting to tick this one off. Thanks, Barry.

Pours hazy orange-copper with a small fading off-white head.

Aroma is pretty nice with caramel, candi sugar, Belgian yeast, vanilla, and some fruitiness.

Flavor is nice, a little bitter and boozy. Caramel malt, candi sugar, spices, and some fruity notes, maybe apple and pear.

Decent palate, medium-full bodied with a good carbonation level.

Pretty solid stuff overall. Amazingly drinkable for the ABV.

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Photo of morimech
3.72/5  rDev -5.8%
look: 3 | smell: 3.5 | taste: 4 | feel: 4 | overall: 3.5

Vintage Winter 2007

Pours a clear golden color with a small white head that quickly settled to a thin skim of suds. Minimal spotty lacing is left on the glass. As I get deeper into the bottle more of the yeast gets stirred up and the beer gets cloudy. Aroma is that of white wine. Remarkable how much like white wine this smells like. The alcohol is also detected. The taste is more like a beer. The malt and the candied sugar makes an appearance. A little bit of a cider flavor. Finishes dry with the alcohol not really dominating despite the high ABV. Medium in body and adequately carbonated. Feels as good as any of the style. Has some good qualities but overall it falls short of the elite of the style. Worth a try.

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Photo of rvajohn
3/5  rDev -24.1%

Photo of akorsak
3.28/5  rDev -17%
look: 4 | smell: 3.5 | taste: 3 | feel: 3 | overall: 3.5

Happy Earth Day. A bottle that is at least two, if not three, years old. In a goblet.

A: The pale ale is appropriately named, a lighter golden color that sparkles in its transparency. Wispy bands of head are all that remain from the initial pour.

S: Sweet caramel, overpoweringly so; I fear that this beer didn't last until 2019 as promised on the label. Residual sweetness, thank you Belgian yeast, adds some diversity to the nose.

T: Not entirely gone, although that caramelly flavor is building in intensity. Light fruits, think white grapes and apples, come from the yeast. The ale is still well carbonated, the zesty heat of the bubbles coming through in each sip. The ale loses all sweetness by the finish, a dry landscape left behind. I can taste the tripel-like spice and strength combination; it peeps through the caramel flavors sporadically.

M: Just a little long in the tooth here, too much caramel for its own good. I'll be visiting Pisgah in less than four weeks; I'll be looking for a re-try.

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Photo of KevinGordon
4.25/5  rDev +7.6%

4.27/5  rDev +8.1%
look: 4 | smell: 4.5 | taste: 4 | feel: 4.5 | overall: 4.5

Thanks to mikesgroove for this one.

White fuzzy head is clean and quick fading from its early one finger stance. Body is a honey straw color with a bit of murky haze tword the center of the glass. Nose includes notes of lemon and orange zest, sharp alchol, and even a barnyard funk with light spice thrown in. Enters the mouth with a very complex mix of soft spice and creamy citrus rind. The style comes off very much like a well made saison with complexity and balanced tones of honey and sugar cane sweetness with a bit of malt balance. Alchol is ther but the 11.5% is well hidden in the flavor profile. Mouthfeel is thick , glazing and almost sticky. Nicely drinkable on a variety of levels.

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Photo of wedge
3.22/5  rDev -18.5%
look: 2.5 | smell: 3 | taste: 3.5 | feel: 3.5 | overall: 3

Winter 2007

Pours a bright and clear orange color with a disappointingly small, fizzling head for something named after the Flemish chemist who first distinguished gases like CO2 from air. Aromas of apple and white wine...sweet candied fruit esters and a bit of yeast. The much welcomed presence of pale malt enters the picture with the first sip. Spiced apple, honey, and candied fruit make up the majority of flavors, finishing with a touch of sweet breadiness. The honeyed quality builds as it warms in both smell and taste. There is definitely more balance in the flavor overall. Medium-plus body, slick, with fine carbonation.

I feel like I've been harsh on this one, but it just doesn't measure up to the deliciousness of other examples of the style. This strikes me as raw and one-dimensional...which admittedly lessens as it approaches room temperature. I got a little buzz going at least...

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Photo of mikesgroove
4.82/5  rDev +22%
look: 4 | smell: 4.5 | taste: 5 | feel: 5 | overall: 5

You could probably imagine I would have a few of these at least laying around. So I decided to crack one open after it had been sitting for almost a year in the cellar. Served at cellar temp in a goblet, this one was consumed on 09/12/2008 while watching the Ike landfall, good luck everyone.

The pour was very nice, with an extremely hazy, golden yellow that just gurgled out of the glass. A slight touch of a white head came up across the top of the glass which settled down into a slight little bit of a crown that strung together throughout the session. Decent amount of side glass lace as well.

The aroma was extremely rich. Lots of fruity yeast coming through immediately after popping the cork. Some nice notes of peach and banana, hints of apricot and light wheat mixing in throughout. Very light grassy hop notes as it warms up as well as a touch of grapes. The flavor was extremely mellow and that was an understatement. Amazingly clean and complex, this was just stunning for the style and ABV. Rich notes of apricot and peach with light hoppy notes riddled throughout. Some decent light grain which really balanced the middle of the profile quite well. I was literally floored by the mellowness of this one. It is a huge Belgian style ale that really is just soo subtle, I found myself really just taking bigger and bigger sips as I went through it. For a Belgian strong, it was amazing at how it brought its point home without overwhelming anything.

Overall this was amazing, especially after a good year sitting and waiting to be opened. I really just was amazed drinking this one tonight as the banana and clove flavors just whirled around and mixed with a nice apricot flavor which just came through so well. I am not sure what else to say, this was just impressive. I am always a big fan, but shit, this is just what it is all about, huge experimentation that really just pushed the limits, but came though superb. Go get this.

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Photo of wcudwight
4.17/5  rDev +5.6%
look: 4 | smell: 4.5 | taste: 4 | feel: 4.5 | overall: 4

Pours a cloudy peach color with a thin white head that quickly retreats and leaves thin wet lacing. The outstanding color keeps the appearance of this beer from being average.
There is a mixture of aromas that I can't quite figure out but I like them. Peach tobacco comes to mind. Bananna, lemon. Herby and spicy.
Sugary, caramel, spicy, peppery flavor. Lot's going on but it blends well and stays balanced.
Good mouthfeel with a very dry finish. Big and filling.
This one is a sipper for sure. Sit by the fire, get a good book and grap you a Pisgah Baptista.

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Photo of rallison
4.35/5  rDev +10.1%
look: 4 | smell: 4 | taste: 4.5 | feel: 4.5 | overall: 4.5

Another very solid offering from Pisgah. Winter 2007 bottling. And Pisgah corks are a pain, by the way.

Light on the tongue with little to suggest 11.5%. Smells of spicy tropical fruits. Banana. The taste is rather fruity (again, the light, tropical fruits), with a fair bit of spice (think white pepper and whatnot) and some alcohol warmth. Candi sugar. Peaches. Nicely carbonated. Very drinkable with a lightness on the tongue that many American examples of the style fail to exhibit.

I would definitely drink this again; recommended.

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Photo of blackie
4.5/5  rDev +13.9%
look: 4.5 | smell: 4.5 | taste: 4.5 | feel: 4.5 | overall: 4.5

a: white head, good retention and moderate lacing...golden amber colored beer

s: Fabulously complex Belgian pale malts and light sugars are complimented by a well done spice and hop counterpart. Spicy sweet ethanol is a big compliment. A range of fruits from apple to banana and some light lemongrass. Love the yeast presence, not really very estery, but subtle and bready. Near 5.

m: medium-high, smooth carbonation and a clean medium body

t: Pale Belgian barley malts with great notes of spicy Belgian yeasts and an extremely light sweetness. Smooth and delicately complex with just a touch of ethanol heat. Apple, pear, and white fig. Nice, long finish with a papery aged hop flavor.

d: a dangerously delicious sipper at 11.5%

from my new Hommel snifter at the hotel...750 mL bottle from Bruisin' Ales, winter 2007

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Photo of largadeer
4.37/5  rDev +10.6%
look: 4 | smell: 4.5 | taste: 4.5 | feel: 4.5 | overall: 4

Appearance: Tarnished gold in color but without the huge frothy head signature of the style; instead, there's just a thin white cap that quickly settles to a crown.

Smell: Spiced apple cider with a faint lemony twang. Heavily spiced in general, but thankfully not cloying, and no spice is so extreme that it's plainly obvious what they tossed in here. There's a lot of estery complexity as well beneath the spices.

Taste & mouthfeel: Unfermented apple cider and pumpkin pie; very spicy and fruity, though not extremely sweet. There's a faint acidity in the spicy finish along with a hint of heat from the alcohol, but all in all this is pretty mellow stuff, dangerously drinkable for its 11.5% ABV.

Notes: Got this one from mikesgroove as an extra in a recent trade. Thanks Mike!

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Photo of richbrew
4/5  rDev +1.3%

Photo of CBlack85
4.32/5  rDev +9.4%
look: 4 | smell: 4.5 | taste: 4.5 | feel: 4 | overall: 4

On tap at Duckworths in Charlotte

A hazy golden/amber color with no real head to speak of. For a beer that has virtually no head it leaves quite a bit of lacing.

Big, bold spicy and fruity aroma. Very interesting smells, there are some very nice tropical type fruits and a faint hint of yeast. There is also a slightly boozy smell lingering in the background.

The sweet fruity flavors are the most pronounced. Lots of apricot and banana, I do get some citrusy notes but just hints here and there. There is also an almost artificial sweetness lurking around in there. I am also getting some wine like notes. There is alot going on in this beer, and it all seems to come together nicely. The alcohol is definately there and detectible, but not boozy. Medium/heavy body and very little carbonation.

This is a terrific beer, I have come to expect nothing less from the guys at Pisgah...

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Photo of FUwolfpacker
3.5/5  rDev -11.4%

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Pisgah Baptista from Pisgah Brewing Co.
Beer rating: 3.95 out of 5 with 85 ratings