Trader Joe's Providential Golden Ale | Trader Joe's Brewing Company

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Trader Joe's Providential Golden AleTrader Joe's Providential Golden Ale

Brewed by:
Trader Joe's Brewing Company
California, United States

Style: Belgian Strong Pale Ale

Alcohol by volume (ABV): 7.50%

Availability: Year-round

Notes / Commercial Description:
Ale brewed with spices.

Added by HalfFull on 12-12-2012

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Reviews: 104 | Ratings: 352
Photo of OvO_Dave
4.54/5  rDev +16.1%
look: 4.5 | smell: 4.25 | taste: 4.75 | feel: 4.5 | overall: 4.5

I drove to my local Trader Joe's and bought myself a 750ml bottle based primarily on reviews I read here at Beer Advocate. I have to say that I agree - this beer seems to have everything I love about Belgian strong pale ales. It tasted great! I'll be making the trip back to pick up a few more. I didn't realize until I uncorked it... TJ's is Unibroue.

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Photo of argock
4.16/5  rDev +6.4%
look: 4 | smell: 4.25 | taste: 4 | feel: 4.5 | overall: 4.25

Poured from corked and caged 750 ml brown bottle into a Chimay chalice. BB 08-18-18 on bottle neck.

A: Hazy golden with 2-finger frothy white head with good retention and solid stripe of lacing around the top of the glass.

S: Bready Pilsner malt aromas cut quickly by numerous spicy yeast aromas including clove, pepper, ginger and orange peel. Some pear fruity esters. Hopping is mainly herbal in character.

T: Similar bready and slightly sweet Pilsner malty flavor throughout the palate but fading to pepper, bitter orange, clove, pear, apple skin, bubble gum, and some ginger. Hops are herbal.
Alcohol comes through in the finish with a little more solventy and metallic than it should be.

M: Exceptional pillowy feel with medium body, high carbonation.

O: Huge pleasant surprise - will be picking up a couple more of these to cellar. Great feel and flavor - a little better alcohol mgmt and this would be a stellar Belgian ale.

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Photo of Chizoad
4.25/5  rDev +8.7%
look: 4 | smell: 4 | taste: 4.25 | feel: 4.5 | overall: 4.5

As my local Trader Joe's was lacking any Fins du Monde (c'est la pluralization, n'est ce pas?), I picked up this one as a random grab. This cost me $6, possibly $5. I should check the receipt. By the way, these guys are charging $7.50 for Fin du Monde, which is hard to beat.

Quick, massive head. Fluffy and looks decent, but dissipates quickly. I made an effort to make sure the glass was clean and had no surfactants, but the head fades too rapidly to a thin film that is sadly unappetizing. The beer itself looks great with foam on it, and ... out of place without it? Hazy, golden, on the paler side. Oddly, lacks much variation with path length (Beer-Lambert Law, look it up, aptly named I think).

Spicy aroma (black pepper?) but in general I'm terrible at identifying anything beyond banana and bubblegum. There's definitely a little of each in it, but more to it as well. Doesn't leap out of the glass.

Classic Belgian taste. Just like the aroma too. No surprises, which I suppose is a little disappointing. The bitterness is subdued and mellow, which meshes perfectly with the clear fruity sweetness present in the beer. As it warms it changes. Unpleasantly metallic for a second, then the balance of the hops shows through as the sweetness fades. For the bargain barrel price this is a massive home run. If I could make one this good for this price, I'd be elated, and I'd be a nonprofit brewer.

Great body. Ideal carbonation, which adds to the spiciness and offsets and of the more cloying aspects that sometimes crop up in Belgian-style beers. The only knock is a slight wateriness that makes me want to drink it too quickly. These beers should be more like a meal, as least by my philosophy.

For the price, this is nigh unbeatable. Imagine getting something basically as good as Chimay for around 2/5 the price. Sure it misses the subtleties but .... are you gonna pay more than double for only subtlety?

What "is" this beer? More than anything: Belgian. And excellent.

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Photo of Suds
3.63/5  rDev -7.2%
look: 4 | smell: 3.5 | taste: 3.5 | feel: 4 | overall: 3.75

From a 750 ml corked bottle, this brew is hazy golden, effervescent, with a tall white head. The aroma is Belgian, with clove, peppery phenos, and yeast. Semi-dry with soft maltiness and lots of spiciness. Alcohol and fruit are also notable. The beer is full in body and has a little warmth. Enjoyable.

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Photo of BloodSoakedAleMug
4.35/5  rDev +11.3%
look: 4.25 | smell: 4.25 | taste: 4.5 | feel: 4.25 | overall: 4.25

Pours a hazy straw color with a three finger, brilliant white head. Leaves no lacing.

Smell: Yeasty, freshly baked bread, pineapples and cloves. Aromas of bananas, rosemary, thyme and mild honey.

Taste: Excellent. I'm getting lots of yeast akin to cilantro and clove. There's a juicy pineapple and savory honey flavor, along with notes of bananas and vanilla. Hiding in the back are notes of white figs, truffles and champagne. A dank, dry, grassy hop note rounds it all off on the finish.

Feel: Heavy and effervescent. Highly chugable, hides it's abv well.

Overall: Very affordable ($7) and well worth the money. This is an amazing beer, if I wore a hat, it would go off to Unibroue and Trader Joe's for coming together to brew this.

I don't understand some of the negativity towards this one, you'd be hard pressed to find a good belgian strong ale as good as this for under $8.

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Photo of Beginner2
4.14/5  rDev +5.9%
look: 3.75 | smell: 4 | taste: 4.25 | feel: 4 | overall: 4.25

I like what Trader Joe's does here. It goes to one of the top north American breweries specializing in Belgians and puts TJ's private label on a recipe. TJ makes many new outlets for high-quality Belgians and, I suspect, substantially boosted Unibroue sales as TJ gave them many more outlets for their beers; often selling the sampler pack.

While I drink Providential at least twice a year, I once taste-tested against two other Unibroues: Don de Dieu (a strong pale) and its world-class triple, Fin du Monde. I and my co-taster agreed there was enough of each in Providential to conclude it was something of a hybrid recipe of the two. As the years wore on, something has changed... (probably my buds) and Providential seems more its own recipe. (But that is only a consumer's guess.)

At any rate, Providential tastes great, goes well with varied appetizer-like foods and is an even better value at 20% under the competitors. I recommend doing what I do: buy Providential most times I go to TJ's and bring it to parties to introduce others to a well-made and well-priced Belgian.

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Photo of AndrewMichael
3.75/5  rDev -4.1%
look: 3.75 | smell: 3.75 | taste: 3.75 | feel: 3.75 | overall: 3.75

750 mL corked bottle poured into a pint glass. Bright golden color, and Belgian yeast aroma. Belgian yeast is not overpowering, a pleasant golden ale. I enjoy Unibroue beers made for Trader Joe's, and always a good price for the quality.

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Photo of BeerAndGasMasks
3.71/5  rDev -5.1%
look: 4 | smell: 3.5 | taste: 3.75 | feel: 3.75 | overall: 3.75

From the bottle, it pours a golden color with a puffy white head. A bit of citrus and yeast in the nose. The mouth gets a bit of sweet malt and fruit flavor. Enjoyable. BB: Apr 2016

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Photo of HopsAreDaMan
3.37/5  rDev -13.8%
look: 3.75 | smell: 3.5 | taste: 3.25 | feel: 3.5 | overall: 3.25

(Review 2 days after drinking) 750 ml bottle, bought at the beginning of 2015.

Shared at my beer club meeting. I thought the spiciness was too much, and it reminded me of another Unibroue beer I had recently. Not bad, just not my kind of beer.

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Photo of Zorro
3.54/5  rDev -9.5%
look: 4 | smell: 3.75 | taste: 3.5 | feel: 3.5 | overall: 3.25

Chill hazed golden colored ale with a puffy white colored head.

Strong apple aroma with cinnamon and pepper. Medium level coriander scent. Honeysuckle malt aroma. This smells decidedly sweet. Scent of flowers.

Starts out mildly sweet with the taste of candy apple. Flavors of caramel candy and faint cinnamon. Medium strong coriander taste.

Mouthfeel is good.

Overall a tasty affordable Unibroue beer sold by Trader Joe's.

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Photo of Beejay
3.79/5  rDev -3.1%
look: 4 | smell: 3.75 | taste: 3.75 | feel: 4 | overall: 3.75

A: Pale yellow, hazy with a large fluffy white head.

S: Belgian yeast with citrus notes as well as clove and nutmeg. Perhaps a hint of booze in the finish.

T: Banana, clove, apricot come out right away. Delightfully fruity, with overtones of citrus and a touch of Belgian booze in the finish.

M: Medium, with effervescent carbonation.

O: Overall a pretty solid beer, for a fairly affordable price.. amazing no, but darn good.

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Photo of mac31
4.02/5  rDev +2.8%
look: 4.25 | smell: 4 | taste: 4 | feel: 4 | overall: 4

Big banana esters up front. Soft spices present, along with some clove. Subtle, sweet maltiness that is a tad bready. Stone fruit sweetness (apricot, ripe peach). Orange sweetness present as well, reminds me of orange juice in the finish. Soft, faint floral hops. Minor, soft bittering and honeysuckle (floral) in the finish. This beer is thin bodied with spritzy carbonation. A good beer. Booze is well covered. For the price, a great beer.

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Photo of VelvetExtract
3.61/5  rDev -7.7%
look: 4 | smell: 3.5 | taste: 3.5 | feel: 3.75 | overall: 3.75

Bottle. Unibrou slanging them Trader Joe beers. Poured a medium golden color. Aroma is of softer Belgian yeast, grain and a pale fruitiness. Flavor is also rather subdued but not half bad. Nothing takes control, which I enjoy during this style of beer. Pale malts, pale fleshed fruits, easily digestible Belgian maltiness. Not boozy at all. Mellow yet fairly tasty.

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Photo of sphmiel
4.35/5  rDev +11.3%
look: 4.25 | smell: 4.25 | taste: 4.5 | feel: 4.25 | overall: 4.25

Pours hazy straw colored, thin head rapidly fades.
Unexpected pleasant floral aroma, spicy Belgian yeast in the flavor, nicely carbonated.
Great take on the style, at a hard to beat price.

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Photo of FFreak
4.09/5  rDev +4.6%
look: 3.75 | smell: 4 | taste: 4.25 | feel: 4 | overall: 4

Wife picked this up at TJ's for $5.99, best by date 6-3-2016. Poured into tall tulips and shared out on the deck on a pleasant afternoon. Pours a very hazy, golden yellow with a slight greyish tinge. The head is somewhat thin with grainy bubbles, dissipates quickly leaving a thin ring and very little lace. Nice bready, yeasty Belgian aroma with slight hint of spices. Taste is good, with more spice coming into the picture and a nicely balanced bitterness to finish the up front sweet malt. Mouth is good, medium body, nicely carbed and refreshing. Overall, a great deal on a decent Unibroue product.

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Photo of BoldRulerVT
3.94/5  rDev +0.8%
look: 4 | smell: 3.75 | taste: 4 | feel: 4 | overall: 4

Poured from the bottle into a large tulip.
Pours a nice golden tangerine color with a finger or two of bubbly head.
Aromas are nice, good belgian yeast aromas and some breadiness.
Taste is fantastic a nice balance of yeasty belgian good bread backbone, some mellow sweetness as well.
Mouthfeel is nice, as it should be.
Overall, a flavorful and accessible beer.

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Photo of ClavisAurea
3.69/5  rDev -5.6%
look: 3.75 | smell: 4 | taste: 3.5 | feel: 3.5 | overall: 3.75

750ml bottle served in a wine glass with a best before date of 04/2016.

Appearance: pale gold, effervescent, clear

Nose: bread, yeast, malt, dried fruit

Taste: candi sugar, very fruity, refreshing, very sweet

Overall: I thought this was a nice strong pale ale from Unibroue/Trader Joe's. I probably wouldn't buy it again because of the overwhelming sweetness. $4.99 for a 750ml is a great price though.

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Photo of SFNC
3.96/5  rDev +1.3%
look: 3.75 | smell: 4 | taste: 4 | feel: 3.75 | overall: 4

It says Trader Joes on the label, but Unibroue on the cork. Maybe not as good as La Fin De Monde or Tres Pistoles, but pretty good quality. Nice spicy taste and Unibroues signature yeast flavor. A good bargain worth trying if you are looking for a cheap Belgian Style fix. A bomber for $6.99 is a steal.

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Photo of babaracas
3.63/5  rDev -7.2%
look: 3.5 | smell: 3.5 | taste: 3.75 | feel: 3.75 | overall: 3.5

Pours a mostly clear gold, one finger of fizzy white head, thin ring left with dots left on the glass. Smell: floral, notes of pear, grape and coriander, lightly bready. Taste: spicy, pepper, mildly grainy, pear and unripe peach, mildly coriander-y, then unripe banana in the finish. For the lower abv it is fairly well put together but does nothing to distinguish itself other than have a lower price tag than most BSPAs in this format.

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Photo of coltonbrimhall
3.59/5  rDev -8.2%
look: 4 | smell: 3.75 | taste: 3.5 | feel: 3.5 | overall: 3.5

-beautiful foamy head
-bright light hops, light astringent, but very mellow
-very typical Belgian pale ale, but lacking flavor or anything to set it apart
-very smooth and balanced, but overly bubbly
-was hoping for more but it is a plain tasting beer

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Photo of TappaKeggaBrew
3.57/5  rDev -8.7%
look: 3.75 | smell: 4.25 | taste: 3.25 | feel: 3.25 | overall: 3.5

A: Cloudy, gold color, with a white head that rises at least 2 fingers before settling to a thin layer. Lacing is minimal.

S: Strong citrus notes, followed by freshly baked bread. Some white pepper. There's a funky, wet-leather smell, and green apple. Some flowery/perfumy notes appear as well.

T: Big sweetness up front, but it's quickly overwhelmed by a wave of tart (tangerine & cherry; a hint of lime also is present. I get a strong sense of the yeast late, then a little phenolic bitterness at the end.

M: Initially moist, with mediocre carbonation. It's chewier than I expected based on appearance. The finish borders on astringent.

O: Just OK in my opinion. I had pretty high hopes fom the aroma, but the phenolic aftertaste and astringent mouthfeel didn't do it for me.

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Photo of Tripel_Threat
4.29/5  rDev +9.7%
look: 4.25 | smell: 4.5 | taste: 4.25 | feel: 4 | overall: 4.25

5.99 bomber from Trader Joe's, picked up along with their Vintage Ale and (shudder) a couple Boatswain Ales. Seriously, skip the Boatswains.

Pours a pale gold into a craft pub glass because I was too lazy to reach a couple extra inches for the trusty tulip. Lots of carbonation as expected from the style, and a big old fluffy white head. Gorgeous, but expected from an ale made by Unibroue, the masters behind Fin du Monde.

Smell is near-perfect. Banana, clove, bubble-gum, candy sugar, and beautiful, beautiful Belgian yeast. The head has settled to a nice white cap, with little lacing on the glass. The carbonation slows but doesn't stop during the session.

Apropos of nothing, I am watching Archer, "Swiss Miss," while drinking this. They go well together.

The taste is sweet, spice, and yeast. Some citrus zest (lemon and orange). Great, great example. The mouthfeel is a little thin, though, and takes just a tiny bit away from it, but just a tiny bit.

Look, I recommend this one. I feel like I'm stealing it for only 5.99. It's not Tripel Karmeleit, it's not Fin du Monde, but this bad boy Belgian is going to find itself in my cellar more than once this year. Go get it, you'll be happy.

Oh, and the ABV is well hidden. Just be careful.

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Photo of secondtooth
4.26/5  rDev +9%
look: 3.75 | smell: 4 | taste: 4.5 | feel: 4.25 | overall: 4.25

Appearance: Hazy golden yellow, with massive head of fine white suds. Big, spoke-like lace.

Aroma: Spices, candy sugar, Belgian yeast, and plenty of fruity notes. Very very striking and nice.

Taste: Spectacular, sweet, and fruity on the palate with plenty of spice accents. Very much in line with a classic Abbey ale. A hint of floral notes dance around the tongue, with a flash of hops near the finish. The body is light, even spritzy and champagne-like, adding a level of drinkability. A very complex, rewarding, and refreshing Belgian-style ale here, and well worth checking out (especially as it was only around $5.99 a bomber at Trader Joe’s).

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Photo of cratez
3.6/5  rDev -7.9%
look: 4 | smell: 4 | taste: 3.5 | feel: 3.5 | overall: 3.25

Trader Joe's Providential Belgian Style Golden Ale - 7.5% ABV - Consumed January 9, 2015.

A: Hazy golden amber hue with three fingers of white foam and lots of bubbles in the body. Several strands of lacing cling to the tulip glass. Head and lace retain well. An enticing appearance.

S: Clove, orange peel, spice box (cardamom, cinnamon), lemon zest, classic Unibroue yeastiness (a little doughy), light phenols, and apricot. A very effervescent and appealing nose. Lovely.

T: Big zesty, yeasty, and lightly citric flavours upfront; orange peel, lemon, spice box and clove mid-palate; mildly drying and malty finish with fruity-yeasty afters that linger for a while. A tasty and satisfying Belgian blonde.

M: Full side of medium-bodied, creamy middle, tangy and citric zestiness precedes a lightly drying and malty finish with more fruity, yeasty, and estery flavours on the cough. Nice palate.

O: An appetizing golden ale with above average flavours and aromas. No flaws that I can detect; just a solid, quaffable Belgian ale here.

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Photo of SandwichGirl
4.65/5  rDev +18.9%
look: 5 | smell: 5 | taste: 4.25 | feel: 5 | overall: 4.75

Fantastic pale Belgian beer, especially considering Trader Joe's prices (and the Christmas gift card picking up the tab). It is fairly spicy and assertive, leaning mostly to a citrus flavor. Then the malts take over, ending with a long finish from the Belgian yeast. It is definitely a drink-by-the-fire, sipping quietly kind of beer but not too heavy or overly sweet. Would absolutely recommend to anyone with a Trader Joe's nearby. It is similar to Fin Du Monde, which I was actually reaching for when I saw this.

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Trader Joe's Providential Golden Ale from Trader Joe's Brewing Company
3.91 out of 5 based on 352 ratings.
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