North Coast Brewing Co.

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Strong Ale - Belgian Pale
Ranked #16
Ranked #4,436
4.07 | pDev: 11.55%
North Coast Brewing Co.
California, United States
Notes: Belgian Ales represent the height of the brewers’ art. Sophisticated brewing techniques, yeast blends, and unique flavoring elements have elevated the beers of Belgium to the status enjoyed by wine in other countries.

PranQster follows in this tradition using a mixed culture of antique yeast strains that produce a floral nose, a full fruity flavor, and a clean finish.

IBU: 20
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Reviews: 1,283 | Ratings: 3,563 | Log in to view all ratings and sort
Reviews by TheLongBeachBum:
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TheLongBeachBum from California

4.2/5  rDev +3.2%
look: 4 | smell: 4 | taste: 4.5 | feel: 4 | overall: 4

Presentation: 12 fluid ounce short fat stubby thin neck brown bottle. Lots of jolly piss-heads reveling on the label except for one dude on the far right who looks positively restrained in character. Labeled at 7.6% ABV, no freshness date.

Appearance: A lucid lovely amber color, with a golden orange hue when back-lit. Solid levels of conditioning in the beer help to form the off-white head that looks excellent for a minute or two. Sadly, the head soon settles to a thin covering with a thick edged halo ring. Not much lacing but great looks in a Goblet.

Nose: Mmmmm, very Belgium – an aged musty hoppy aroma with some damp straw hints and spicy aromas.

Taste: Oooooh this IS good. A lovely spiced hop beginning, clean and inviting it begs you to guess the spice!? I went for Coriander, but I could be wrong. The malts are more perceptible in the middle, grain and some light biscuit. A warming feel in the middle – this is undoubtedly from the 7.6% alcohol. The end has a little yeast and sweetness. This is very much like a Kasteel Blond Lite, and I am not being facetious when I say that, moreover it is a compliment.

Mouthfeel: Very nice, Bold and certainly not afraid to say “Hey, I’m an American Belgium Strong Golden Ale”, nor should it be. Accomplished.

Drinkability: This was the last of the night and it served its purpose extremely well, sipped slowly it hit the spot and told my body to shut down for the ensuing sleep. Easily imbibed and seriously worthy of the title “Belgian Style”.

Overall: A very nice Belgian Style Golden Ale to finish the night with. Compared against the price of Belgium’s from the homeland, at less than $2 this is *well worth* the money. More of these are on order!

Nov 02, 2003
More User Reviews:
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Squire from Mississippi

4.38/5  rDev +7.6%
look: 3.5 | smell: 4.25 | taste: 4.5 | feel: 4.5 | overall: 4.5

Appearance: Light hazy gold, good cap and lacing.

Aroma: Sweet caramel malt, rather rich scent, luscious ripe banana, herby floral spicy hops but not too much.

Taste: Belgian, yes, that's it. Sweet malt, yellow fruit and clove/spiciness. Complex, all the flavors touches and texture come together nicely. Not quite as refined as the Grand Cru Belgians but a good representative none the less. Consistent flavors all the way through and clean finish. Desert like aftertaste.

Mousse like texture with a slight bubbly prickle.

Overall: Widely available, this one is proof a brew doesn't have to be a limited edition to be in the upper ranks. Worth seeking out.

May 18, 2016
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Thorpe429 from Illinois

4.1/5  rDev +0.7%
look: 4 | smell: 4 | taste: 4 | feel: 4 | overall: 4.5

Pours a somewhat-hazed golden color with a nice white head. Nose is mostly Belgian yeast with bits of clove, orange, spice, and coriander. Taste is similar with some malt sweetness coming through in addition to the fresh fruits coming from the yeast. Moderate body with good carbonation; very nice drinkability on a hard to nail style, especially outside of the better Belgian breweries.

Feb 18, 2010
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Sammy from Canada (ON)

4.17/5  rDev +2.5%
look: 3.5 | smell: 4 | taste: 4.5 | feel: 4 | overall: 4

Aggressive yeast, in terms of aroma and taste for a Belgium, but otherwise true to its style. An interesting and worthwhile addition to its style. Coriander, vanilla, nutmeg. Quite quafable. Sweet-spicy. Medium-full mouthfeel. Cloudy golden appearance.

Dec 14, 2004
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orbitalr0x from Illinois

4.08/5  rDev +0.2%
look: 4.5 | smell: 4 | taste: 4 | feel: 4.5 | overall: 4

I've had the Old Rasputin and Red Seal previously and enjoyed them I have high hopes for this ale. Poured from the bottle with a very cloudy orange color....nice one inch head as well. Smells spicy and fruity and tastes the same. Wow, quite an interesting flavor. The peppery taste comes through as well as a fruity citrus flavor. This is a new taste for me and I am enjoying it. The 7.6% abv can be felt after about half the bottle...nice and warming. This would be good on a cold night. I like this belgian ale and I look forward to trying more of this style. Kudos to North Coast Brewing Co. for another great beer.

Aug 26, 2004
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Todd from California

4.7/5  rDev +15.5%
look: 4 | smell: 4 | taste: 5 | feel: 5 | overall: 5

Presentation: 12oz fat twisty with a black&white of a bunch of fat jolly beer drinking blokes. The cool part is that we spotted a photographic style head that is a bit out of place. A guy on the right hand side of the label stares at you with a beer (the brewer?).

Appearance: Hazy, bubbly gold. The rushing carbonation creates a foamy white head that sticks slightly.

Smell: Horsy, animal smell (a common Belgian yeast trait) with notes of dry malts.

Taste: Definitely spiced, with coriander most likely. Sweet malt, then the spice, turning a tad grainy. A warming alcohol is present and hides perfectly amongst the malty mouth-feel. You can feel its 6.9% abv strength, yet it is highly drinkable. Finishes sweet.

Notes: For a lighter coloured Belgian style ale, this kicks the dregs out of Duvel. More character and complexity than their exports could ever dream of. So if you like Duvel, or similar, you will be in bliss with this brew. Available in a 4-pack for about $7 US.

Jun 01, 1998
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Reverand from Pennsylvania

4.38/5  rDev +7.6%
look: 4.5 | smell: 4 | taste: 4.5 | feel: 4.5 | overall: 4.5

Truly the best Belgian ale from the U.S! If you like duvel you will love pranqster.
First off I was really taken in but it's hazy yellow appearance with a big huge head that seemed to hang around forever. A fruity aroma intices you gulp this brew down, but with a 6.9% alcohol you need to take your time and savor ever last drop. A spicy malty flavor and full bodied ale is sure to awaken your taste buds.
Overall I thought this beer was a great interpetation of a Belgian ale in fact I had to check the label to make sure it was made in the U.S.

Apr 27, 2003
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yoko from Oregon

4.27/5  rDev +4.9%
look: 3.5 | smell: 4 | taste: 4.5 | feel: 4 | overall: 4.5

We all know the bottle and the team of happy fellows sporting their beers and jolly. Poured a milky golden-orange with suspended specks of ground pepper like particles (despite holding a 1/2" in the bottle). Even with a hard pour it mounted a small head that quickly disappeared to a reminiscent white wash cloud up top with a slight stick of head that left a delicate and hoped for lace. The nose was a delight - "yes, a Belgian"... dry malts, sour horse/straw in a very good way. Carbonation carried the libation from start to finish. Malts and sour with a hop spice lite bite finish...ahhhh.

What a delightful surprise.

Feb 26, 2005
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NickMunford from Wyoming

3/5  rDev -26.3%

Jan 22, 2012
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CaptainIPA from Wisconsin

4.3/5  rDev +5.7%
look: 4 | smell: 4 | taste: 4.5 | feel: 4 | overall: 4.5

P: Presented in a 12 oz., stubby brown bottle with a black and white label depicting a time-honored tavern full of pie-eyed Belgians. Look for the contemporary face at bottom right, behind the barrel.

Purchased as a single @ Trader Joe's. Poured into a Hennepin flute.

A: Pours a hazy, dark golden color with a frothy, two-finger head that leaves a fair amount of spotted lacing. Good carbonation.

S: Cardamom, cloves, yeast, pear and peach.

T: Interesting taste profile that mirrors the nose with notes of cardamom, cloves, Belgian yeast and banana. Subtle hints of wheat and a touch of hops. Pear surfaces in the background. Smooth finish.

M: Medium-bodied and crisp. Carbonation attacks at mid-tongue.

D: Great drinkability, especially after refinishing a door - a remarkably refreshing ale that cuts through the saw dust. Excellent representative of the style. Highly recommended.

Oct 12, 2008
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vishneda from Illinois

4.25/5  rDev +4.4%
look: 4 | smell: 4 | taste: 4.5 | feel: 4.5 | overall: 4

12 oz bottle poured into a chalice.

This brew pours a nice tangerine color. The head is notoriously thin, but there is a lot of action going on in the glass. Light lacing appears as I drink the beer.

There is a fruity aroma; sweet and lightly citrus. I also sense some other fruit which is hard for me to place... perhaps apricot. The floral notes of the hops come through softly as well.

Pranqster is dominantly sweet but I do not find it cloying. The malt sweetness is there and there are hints of vanilla and maybe a little of the alcohol contributing to the sensation. The hop profile, with light floral bitterness, comes through in the end to give good balance. Overall, I am very impressed with this beer that manages to maintain its character and still come off pretty sweet.

The mouthfeel is near perfect, nice balance of air and body. Overall, its a very drinkable beer because it feels nice and has a cheerful flavor and aroma. The high abv keeps me from grabbing another one, but I can't fault it for that.

(Tasting notes from 06 Aug 2009)

Aug 18, 2009
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wvsabbath from West Virginia

4.12/5  rDev +1.2%
look: 4 | smell: 4.5 | taste: 4 | feel: 4 | overall: 4

Serving Type - Bottle

Appearance - Light golden tan/yellow, thin white 1 inch head, plenty of lacing.

Smell - Floral hops, yeast, lemon, sugars, spices, pineapple, honey. Really really strong and pleasent.

Taste - Starts off with yeast and a lemon/honey mix. Spices add a pepperish flavor. Floral hops add a orange, pineapple, grapefruit and some apple flavors.

Mouthfeel - Its rather thin and light on the tounge. It gets some yeast, fruits and a little bitterness that leaves it a littel dry. Palette gets most of the yeast and a little hop kick. Aftertaste is dry.

Overall - Really smooth and easy to drink. Has plenty of flavor and low alcohol feeling in each drink. Really solid, one of the best american examples of a strong ale.

Oct 14, 2011
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JVan from Illinois

3.75/5  rDev -7.9%

Aug 15, 2012
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ejohnson654 from Florida

3.25/5  rDev -20.1%

Oct 17, 2013
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Nutwood from Kentucky

4.5/5  rDev +10.6%

Mar 01, 2013
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Ctruskey from New York

4.06/5  rDev -0.2%
look: 4 | smell: 4.25 | taste: 4 | feel: 4 | overall: 4

Jan 03, 2015
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vinylrooster from Ohio

4.5/5  rDev +10.6%

May 22, 2014
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hophugger from Virginia

3.36/5  rDev -17.4%
look: 3.75 | smell: 3.25 | taste: 3.25 | feel: 3.5 | overall: 3.5

Nice creamy white head and particle laced body which is cloudy golden in color. Smell is very bready(as it should be). Taste is def containing the Belgian characteristics, yeasty, funky, yet a nice crispness that finishes oh so clean. Great beer!

Aug 19, 2016
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Nominoe from California

3.76/5  rDev -7.6%

Nov 11, 2014
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WickedBeer from Alabama

4.5/5  rDev +10.6%
look: 4.25 | smell: 4.75 | taste: 4.5 | feel: 4.5 | overall: 4.25

Jan 21, 2017
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ItsYourBoyBlue from Washington

3.52/5  rDev -13.5%
look: 3.75 | smell: 3.5 | taste: 3.5 | feel: 3.5 | overall: 3.5

Dec 12, 2019
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jackndan from Illinois

4.38/5  rDev +7.6%
look: 4.5 | smell: 4 | taste: 4.5 | feel: 4.5 | overall: 4.5

Pranqster: OK name, great beer. I really enjoyed this beer for several reasons, and I’d buy this beer again. I know that is saying a lot given the competition. Cloudy orange beer, bottled conditioned. Nice big head, huge lacing. The smell and the taste were dominated by floral and particularly citrus notes. Clean, crisp taste. Very nice, with hints of bready malts in the aftertaste. Very nice.

Nov 16, 2002
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ndekke39 from Ohio

3.63/5  rDev -10.8%
look: 4 | smell: 3.5 | taste: 3.5 | feel: 3.5 | overall: 4

Drank this from a 12 oz. bottle. 7.6% ABV. Decanted into a pint glass.

A: Big, foamy white head on the hard pour. Descends to a thick layer of foam. Some sticky lacing on the glass. Slightly hazy. Straw golden color.

S: Bready, yeasty quality dominates the aromas. Overall sweet character. Some bananas. Some of floral notes.

T: Yeasty flavors up front. Blooms into kind of a typical "Belgian golden ale" flavor: bread, yeast, bananas, touch of soft apples, floral quality.

M: Overall smooth, with a small touch of fizzy carbonation on the tongue.

D: Yeah, pretty drinkable. Good Belgian Golden Ale, but nothing exceptional. Still, it's more than adequate.

Apr 03, 2008
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aerozeppl from New York

4.12/5  rDev +1.2%
look: 4 | smell: 4.5 | taste: 4 | feel: 4 | overall: 4

A:Hazy golden color. A finger of white head upon the pour that left a little bit of lacing and a ring on the surface of the beer. Quite a bit of visible carbonation as well.

S: The smell is quite nice. A lot of spice is coming through. I am getting lemon peel and a little bit of orange as well. The nose is everything that one looks for in the style.

T: Again quite a bit of citrus and orange in the taste. Lots of esters. I really am quite impressed with this. Reminds me of a cross between Duvel and Fallen Angel from Midnight Son.

M: Little bit syrupy. Well carbonated.

D: I have had this beer a few times years ago but I was really impressed by this. This is a great example of the style. Definately worth a shot.

Jul 21, 2010
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BarrelO from Virginia

3.4/5  rDev -16.5%
look: 4 | smell: 4 | taste: 3 | feel: 4 | overall: 3

12oz bottle poured into a goblet.

A: Cloudy light orange. Pretty weak head.

S: Delightfully fruity. Apples, bananas, lemons, and some other stuff I can't quite pick out. Also a bit of hops.

T: A pretty big letdown after the aroma. It's so bland that no distinctive flavors really stand out. The fruitiness is there, but it's turned down to about 1. The hops aren't even that prominent, but they manage to drown everything out. In all, it just falls flat.

M: Light and bubbly.

D: Pretty much a poor man's Duvel. It's not actively bad, and the elements of a good Belgian are present, but it never gets out of first gear. The first real disappointment I've had from North Coast.

Jun 24, 2009
Pranqster from North Coast Brewing Co.
Beer rating: 91 out of 100 with 3563 ratings