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Cru D'or | North Coast Brewing Co.

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Cru D'orCru D'or
196 Ratings
Cru D'orCru D'or

Brewed by:
North Coast Brewing Co.
California, United States

Style: Dubbel

Alcohol by volume (ABV): 8.00%

Availability: Year-round

Notes / Commercial Description:
Brewed for Whole Foods.

Added by hyuga on 10-01-2005

This beer is retired; no longer brewed.

Bros Score:
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Ratings: 196 |  Reviews: 180
Photo of Sammy
3.35/5  rDev -7.2%
look: 4 | smell: 4 | taste: 3 | feel: 3.5 | overall: 3

Available at various Whole Foods supermarkets. Pours mahogoney brown with lots of white lace, moderate head in pour. Aroma of mollasses and pice, quite boozy. Taste is spicey peppery, and quite drying aftertaste. Cloves, ginger, chocolate malt, about average mouthfeel. A little too spicey to keep drinking. High carbonation.

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Photo of emerge077
3.71/5  rDev +2.8%
look: 3 | smell: 4.5 | taste: 3.5 | feel: 3.5 | overall: 3.5

After pouring and taking in the smell, it reminds me of banana bread and rum.

Tasting it brings rum raisin, molasses, and some banana over the palate. A mild plum in the aftertaste, chased by booziness. It's 8 percent ABV makes itself known by the minimal lacing, and phenolic smell and taste. A touch too astringent, and lacking the fullness that yeast brings to the table.

Not a great session candidate, but worthy of trying and comparing with other Dubbels.

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Photo of brentk56
3.07/5  rDev -15%
look: 3 | smell: 3.5 | taste: 3 | feel: 2.5 | overall: 3

Appearance: Pours a dark amber color with a surprisingly modest head that fades quickly without leaving much lacing

Smell: Dark fruit, primarily fig and date, with underlying caramel

Taste: The dark fruit and caramel flavors blend nicely, up front, with a sweet candi sugar element arriving by mid-palate; after the swallow, the flavors fade rather than develop complexity

Mouthfeel: Medium to full body with low carbonation

Drinkability: There are some Belgian elements here, but overall, the beer lacked the complexity and mouthfeel that I seek in the style

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Photo of Phyl21ca
3.15/5  rDev -12.7%
look: 3.5 | smell: 3.5 | taste: 3 | feel: 3 | overall: 3

Bottle: Poured a deep clear brown color ale with a rather large foamy head with good retention and some lacing. Aroma of candi sugar with some subtle fruity yeast. Taste is a nice mix between some candi sugar notes with some traces of fruity ester. Missing some dry fruits elements and candi sugar presence is a bit overdone. Average body with good carbonation and light alcohol ester.

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Photo of LXIXME
3.75/5  rDev +3.9%

Photo of superspak
3.78/5  rDev +4.7%
look: 4 | smell: 3.5 | taste: 4 | feel: 4 | overall: 3.5

12 ounce bottle into tulip glass, no bottle dating. Pours very hazy dark reddish brown color with a 1 finger fairly dense khaki head with good retention, that reduces to a thin lace that lingers. Spotty wisps of foamy lacing cling on the glass. Aromas of raisin, prune, caramel, toffee, toast, chocolate, dark bread, earth, and light yeast spiciness. Nice aromas with good balance and decent strength. Taste of raisin, prune, toffee, caramel, toast, chocolate, earth, bread, and light yeast spiciness. Lingering notes of dark fruit, toffee, caramel, toast, chocolate, bread, and yeast earthiness on the finish for a bit. Very nice balance and complexity of flavors; nicely robust with zero cloying flavors on the finish. Light-medium carbonation and medium bodied; with a creamy and slick mouthfeel that is nice. Alcohol is very well hidden with only a slight warming noticed after the finish. Overall this is a very good Belgian dark ale. Nice complexity, balance, and robustness of flavors; and very smooth to sip on. A nicely enjoyable offering.

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Photo of zestar
3.25/5  rDev -10%

Photo of NeroFiddled
4.24/5  rDev +17.5%
look: 3 | smell: 4 | taste: 4.5 | feel: 4 | overall: 4.5

Wow, beautiful label... and it's organic! But can the beer inside the bottle hold up to the appearance? Yes!

It pours a hazy deep chestnut brown body beneath a thin head of creamy yellowed-tan foam. Orangeish and golden highlights peek through. The head retention could certainly be better, and the lacing is limited as well :( , but perhaps this specific bottle just needed a little more time to condition and give it some more carbonation.

The aroma is quite nice with a strong note of cocoa and some dark fruit. Some floral hops linger in the background, and a touch of alcohol can be noticed if you look for it. Mildly vinous. Subtly candyish.

In the mouth it's medium bodied and smooth with a delicate caress on the tongue from a very fine bubbled, natural carbonation.

The flavor delivers the same cocoaish, chocolatey, and caramelish notes found in the nose, but they're much fuller. It's sweetish at first, but then the dark and juicy fruits (black cherry, plum, prune, raisin), floral hops, and splash of alcohol enter to thin it and dry it out. Firm bitterness... just enough to balance... really quite nicely rounded. A combination of dark, vinous fruits and subtle, creamy dark chocolates linger in the finish. Hmmm... mmm. Very interesting. There's almost a suggestion of Brettanomyces here. Leathery. Mineralish. It's like chocolate and wine. Very, very nice. Highly recommended. Quite original!

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Photo of nickfl
3.72/5  rDev +3%
look: 3 | smell: 3.5 | taste: 4 | feel: 4 | overall: 3.5

A - One finger of light brown foam on a hazy, dark brown body. The foam settles quickly and leaves little lace.

S - Toffee and caramel malt with light hops and peppery yeast.

T - Sweet, dark malt up front. Lots of caramel and toffee with a hint of chocolate. Fruity notes come in next, mixing with the malt to create raisin and plums with more toffee. Finishes a bit peppery with darker caramel and some chocolate with a hint of tobacco.

M - Moderately thick body, medium carbonation, and a fairly dry but slightly soapy finish.

D - Nice malt character that comes together really well in the finish. The appearance is pretty poor with a lot of haze and poor retention. The aroma is a bit weak, but the flavor is spot on.

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Photo of ChainGangGuy
3.48/5  rDev -3.6%
look: 3.5 | smell: 3 | taste: 3.5 | feel: 4.5 | overall: 3.5

Appearance: Pours a lightly hazy, mahogany-hued body with a small, beige head.

Smell: Caramel malts, candi sugar, and a dark fruitiness make up the bulk of the aroma. Lesser notes of bananas, spice, and booze.

Taste: Sweet, candyish caramel with a fruitiness consisting of plums and unripened cherries. There's banana and clove present, but remain light and don't clobber you in the mouth like other Belgian-minded beers. The alcohol rides in on the spice and provides for a warming finish.

Mouthfeel: Medium-bodied. Medium carbonation.

Drinkability: Decent enough, I suppose, but when I turn to North Coast, it's usually for their outstanding Old Stock and Old Rasputin brews.

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Photo of BuckeyeNation
4.1/5  rDev +13.6%
look: 4 | smell: 4 | taste: 4 | feel: 4 | overall: 4.5

Cherry caramel with blazing orange peel edges; a gorgeous hue when backlit. The cap is the color of orange caramel mousse and is heavily frothy (if that isn't an oxymoron). I didn't expect the vigorous amount of carbonation and amazing head texture that one might see on an actual Belgian ale... and didn't get it. Still though, this is one fine looking beer.

Cru D'or smells authentic to me. That doesn't mean that it's a top-shelf version that can compete with the best Belgian dubbels, just that it possesses a more than respectable nose that shows that North Coast did their homework. Maybe it's as easy as using the right yeast strain, who knows? It's brown malty, moderately dark fruity (bruised apples, fresh figs) and a tad nutty. Add clove spicy yeast and stir.

I like the flavor even more than the aroma. While it isn't the biggest, boldest version on the block, the initial burst when beer first meets taste buds is impressive. It's lightly sweet and caramel malty with just the right amount of yeasty phenols to add character and, again, authenticity.

The cynic in me wondered whether this beer would simply be ACME California Brown mixed with a Belgian yeast strain (just as I didn't see much difference between Old #38 Stout and the organic Old Plowshare Stout). I couldn't have been more wrong. The sweet, fruity, nutty, spicy flavor profile is deep and getting deeper as I drain the bottle. This is very good beer.

I had some concerns about the body initially; the first few mouthfuls were disappointingly light. Things have come together nicely though and as I enter the bottom of the bottle I'm enjoying it immensely. Even though I'd like to see a wee bit more heft, the smoothness and silkiness of the mouthfeel cannot be faulted.

The second highest compliment that I can pay Cru D'or is that it tastes like an authentic Belgian Dubbel. So much so that I would have said that it originated from that country if I hadn't known better. The highest compliment that I can pay is that it's delicious beer that will be purchased en masse the next time I see it on the shelves.

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Photo of mikesgroove
4.03/5  rDev +11.6%
look: 4.5 | smell: 4 | taste: 4 | feel: 4 | overall: 4

Another gift in a recent trade. I was sent two of these and decided to open one up to see what it was about. Poured into a white birch glass.

dark brown, opaque with a huge billowing tan head that literally fell over the sides of the glass. I did not think it would actually ever go down. It finally settled down but left a ton of lace down the glass for the rest of the session. First whiff of the aroma was very fruity, albeit dark. Hints of apricots and raisins, along with some plum and a touch of alcohol were all readily present. The distinctive aroma of Belgian yeast was ever so present as well. Very nice, floral aroma. First sip was delicous. Very full flavored and lively. Lots of fruity flavors, again figs, apricots, banana, and a nice mellow spiceness melded well with a touch of alcohol that was ever so gently mixed in. Very nice warming feeling upon putting down a few sips. Mouthfeel was superb. Very rich, creamy and thick, great carbonation.

Overall this beer was awesome and exactly what I needed after dinner. I nursed this for almost an hour before all was said and done.

 1,097 characters

Photo of Slatetank
3.75/5  rDev +3.9%

Photo of Billolick
3.92/5  rDev +8.6%
look: 3.5 | smell: 4 | taste: 4 | feel: 3.5 | overall: 4

12 ounce bottle purchased at Whole Foods, its got no freshness indication, and its all organic. Pours dark honey amber, with a moderate tan head, that leaves next to no lacing. nose is of butterscotch cookies and raisins. Notes of vanilla, rum, alcohol and caramel. This is pretty dark to be called a tripel. I found it to be warming and quite flavorful. A little thin in the middle, but comes thru with a smooth, mouth coating finish. More respectable Belgian style brew, produced in the good old USA. Nice everyday Belgian.

 525 characters

Photo of JAHMUR
4/5  rDev +10.8%

Photo of RblWthACoz
3.53/5  rDev -2.2%
look: 4 | smell: 3.5 | taste: 3.5 | feel: 3.5 | overall: 3.5

Pours a dark ruby with little head. Nose is extremely sweet. Cherry tones with an extremely strong alcohol influence. Flavor is too overpowered by alcohol and sweetness. Off the first swig alone I can tell that this one is trying hard, but is too immature to deliver a moving experience. I do get some plums in the midst of all of that. Feel is average. Syrupy but smooth. Drinkability remains low due to the lack of a kick ass flavor stream and the odd feel. North Coast usually does pretty good stuff, but this one is so-so. I wouldn’t suggest it or ever go back to it, but I will admit that this flavor profile might not really go along well with my preferences.

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Photo of jwc215
3.54/5  rDev -1.9%
look: 2.5 | smell: 3.5 | taste: 3.5 | feel: 3.5 | overall: 4

12 oz. bottle, poured into a glass chalice:

With D'or in its name, I expected golden color. Instead it is a murky brown. The score has nothing to do with what I expected. It has to do with the relative bland color and the lack of a head despite the stream of carbonation the gave it only a fizzy patch. Some vanishing lace did manage to temporarily stick on the glass.

The smell is of caramel - almost toffeeish - with cocoa powder. Some hint of spiciness is there, but restrained. The malty aroma is pleasant, but not as rich or complex as expected for style.

The taste is of cocoa powder and caramel. Other than the maltiness, not quite catching the "Belgian-style" much - other than a stab at it. Finishes light and sweetish.

All-in-all, it's rather weak, esp. in its yeast strain, but has a decent cocoaish maltiness. Alcohol is covered very well, adding to its drinkablilty (though it does sneak in). Not as rich as style warrants, but not bad on its own.

 964 characters

Photo of GClarkage
3.27/5  rDev -9.4%
look: 3 | smell: 3.5 | taste: 3 | feel: 3.5 | overall: 3.5

12/01/05- Purchased at Whole Foods in San Mateo, CA

Presentation- 12oz bottle with no freshness info. Poured into my Duvel tulip.

Appearance- Mahogany or a dark cherry like colored pour. At first a decent sized 3/4 inch head, but soon fades to almost nothing. Light lacing left.

Smell- Dark fruits, but more in the catagory of cherry, raspberry, blackberry? Rather than your plums, raisins and dates.

Taste- Tripel? Maybe a Dubbel. Bits and pieces of caramel and a bit of cotton candy or powdered sugar flavoring. Bit of an odd medicnal taste as well.

Mouthfeel- Medium carbonation level.

Drinkability- Doesn't really taste bad, in fact it's kinda good, just not as a tripel.

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Photo of Gavage
3.22/5  rDev -10.8%
look: 2.5 | smell: 3 | taste: 3.5 | feel: 3.5 | overall: 3

Appearance: a muddy brown color with no head. Some spotty surface bubbles are all that arrive with the pour. No lacing develops.

Smell: yeast and a big fruity and caramel candy sweetness that is a bit overbearing.

Taste: plenty of fruit sweetness here like plums and red apples, along with some brown sugar, caramel, and belgian yeast tones. Bitterness tries to rail in the sweetness here. Alcohol is mildly noticeable.

Mouthfeel: medium to heavy in body. Smooth from start to finish. Aftertaste is short but sweet.

Drinkability: OK but it is a bit too sweet for my liking.

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Photo of WesWes
3.62/5  rDev +0.3%
look: 3 | smell: 3.5 | taste: 4 | feel: 3 | overall: 3.5

The beer pours a hazy dark amber/brown color with a slim offwhite head that fades to nothing. The aroma is decent. It has a warm, malty scent that boasts of crystal and roasted malts along with a strong raisony aroma. The alcohol scent is really lingering, but the yeast fruitiness helps mellow it down a touch. The taste is good. It has a very smooth, malty flavor as well as a nice yeast fruitiness in the finish. It's not as warm as the aroma would suggest although it still packs a punch. The mouthfeel is lacking in this one. It's a full bodied beer with less than adequate carbonation. This is a good drinking beer, but the lack of CO2 really hurts the aroma, appearance, and the taste. Although I drank it flat, I still enjoyed it.

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Photo of BillRoth
3.5/5  rDev -3%

Photo of Mora2000
3.43/5  rDev -5%
look: 4 | smell: 3.5 | taste: 3.5 | feel: 3.5 | overall: 3

Beer pours a nice brown color with a medium head which quickly dissipates. The aroma is a combination of Belgian sugar, malt and alcohol. About what you would expect from a dubbel, only with a little alcohol. The taste follows the aroma, only with alcohol playing a bigger role. This is a decent Belgian dubbel, but doesn't stack up to the efforts from breweries who specialize in Belgian beers. I'm glad I tried it, but probably won't try it again.

 449 characters

Photo of Latarnik
3.75/5  rDev +3.9%

Photo of biegaman
3.65/5  rDev +1.1%
look: 4.5 | smell: 4.5 | taste: 3.5 | feel: 3 | overall: 3

12oz USDA Certified Organic. Made in California, purchased in New York - so much for the ecological footprint. Delightful bottle art. A thanks to Hogtownharry!

No head less an ivory white crown. A deep sherry coloured body with unblemished clarity. A beautiful and brilliant shine. A refined looking drink!

My nose easily wonders with this aroma; it offers plenty. It is incredibly spicy - downright piquant. The ingredients list mentions nothing about spices, which leads me to conclude all these phenols are derived from a lovely, Belgian strain of yeast. Rotting fruit, bananas, port sherry, oak, bubble gum. The alcohol boldly establishes its presence.

The mouthfeel is slightly sticky, the palate being coated in syrupy malts. Here, the alcohol is less evident with absolutely no burn or sting. The mouthfeel carries nowhere near as much sweetness nor alcohol as the aroma might have you expect; the two are quite different.

The flavour is considerably absent. An earthy tone to the malts and coffee bean bitterness. Unlike the aroma, which offers an endless playground for the nostrils, the taste profile leaves your tongue unchallenged and frankly, a little shortchanged.

While the BA database list this as a dubbel, certain aspects seemed to draw on other influences. The colour reminds me of a barleywine; the aromatics and fruity esters remind me of a German weissbock; the yeast carries a complexity akin to Belgium's traditional tripels; and the medley of hops and booze gives this an unmistakable American signature.

Nice to see North Coast able to offer something so interesting in their organic line.

 1,626 characters

Photo of wrightst
4/5  rDev +10.8%

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Cru D'or from North Coast Brewing Co.
Beer rating: 3.61 out of 5 with 196 ratings
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