Pranqster | North Coast Brewing Co.

3,380 Ratings

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

Style: Belgian Strong Pale Ale

Alcohol by volume (ABV): 7.60%

Availability: Year-round

Notes / Commercial Description:
IBU's: 20

Added by kbub6f on 06-01-1998

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Ratings: 3,380 |  Reviews: 1,233
Photo of tylernim
4.03/5  rDev +0.8%
look: 4.5 | smell: 4 | taste: 4 | feel: 4 | overall: 4

A - Golden orange into a tulip glass. Foamy wide head that holds for a decent bit.

S - Slight malts with some floral notes.

T - Light yeast with citrus flavor. Sweet malts.

M - Great carbonation on the tongue. Light to medium body

D - Good drinkability. Wish I had a few more.

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Photo of scoobybrew
3.55/5  rDev -11.3%
look: 3.5 | smell: 3.5 | taste: 3.5 | feel: 4 | overall: 3.5

A - fairly clear light golden color with a modest head that dissipates quickly

S - modest yeasty esters with sweet malt and a touch of hop

T - sweet malt at first that carries through to the finish; slight hop flavor accents the malt (goldings?); moderately low yeast esters; alcohol character notices on finish

M - medium body, moderate carbonation, alcohol dryness

D - This is a decent beer. The hop quality isn't unwelcome, but the balance could be shifted a bit more toward the malt. The yeast esters are lacking here from some of the better examples of the style as well. The head retention is really lacking as well in comparison.

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Photo of FreshHawk
3.92/5  rDev -2%
look: 3.5 | smell: 4 | taste: 4 | feel: 3.5 | overall: 4

A - Light golden color with a slightly smaller than average, foamy, bubbly, white head. Disappears pretty fast with very little lace left. Very bubbly and carbonated.

S - Sweet golden fruit with apple being dominant but some orange and apricot. Sweet bread and malted wheat aroma also pretty strong. Vanilla and spice also pretty strong along with candi sugar and a touch of Belgian yeast.

T - A lot of malty flavors with some breadiness and a lot of graininess. Yeast, candi sugar, and spice (pepper, some clove and coriander) are also fairly strong. Some golden fruit comes out mid sip. Slight citrusy flavor toward the finish. Grainy flavors are pretty dominant throughout.

M - Lighter side of medium body with a bit more than average carbonation. Light, spritzy, crisp feel.

D - Easy to drink with alcohol well hidden and not too cloyingly sweet. Good amount of spice breaks up some of the sweetness, but the sweet grainy flavors get old. Would maybe want a second one in a night, but that might be it.

Notes: Grainy flavors were pretty dominant, not quite what I was expecting from the style. Fruitiness was present, just not as much as I would necessarily like. Also a touch thin for the style. It was a good tasting beer, though, just not what I was expecting given the style.

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Photo of CHickman
3.86/5  rDev -3.5%
look: 4 | smell: 3 | taste: 4 | feel: 4 | overall: 4.5

Pours hazy gold in color with a huge 2 finger cloudy white head that fades very slowly; great lacing that sticks to the glass and leaves foamy rings. A good looking beer!

Smells of yeast, coriander, wheat, sweet malt, pepper, faint citrus hops and light spices.

Tastes like it smells, with yeast, lemon, orange peel, coriander, wheat, sweet malt, pepper, citrus hops and light spices. Really tasty and mellow with a well balanced feel that's equal malt and hops.

Mouthfeel is creamy and oily, with a light, crisp feel and medium body that goes down easy.

Really great Belgian by a US brewer that is highly drinkable and very tasty; a beer I could drink all night.

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Photo of choyhosoi
3.5/5  rDev -12.5%
look: 3.5 | smell: 3.5 | taste: 3.5 | feel: 3.5 | overall: 3.5

Poured from a bottle into a glass. Nice sugary tones. Head dissipates quickly. Nice bronze color. Alcohol is apparent right into your first sip. Kind of wished it was smoother like the other Belgians I have had.this isn't a great one but in my opinion it isn't a bad one at all kind of in the middle for me.

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Photo of drizzam
4.4/5  rDev +10%
look: 4 | smell: 4 | taste: 4.5 | feel: 4 | overall: 5

First of all, I just have to say I'm terrible at remembering which one of my good friends hooks me up with good beer on different occasions. To whoever it was that gave me this beer, I say thanks, and I owe ya one!

A - Pours a nice cloudy light orange in color, topped by a thin white head that recedes quickly to a thin cap. Some spotty lacing is left behind by the thin head.

S - Nice aroma, apricot or peach is accented by a bit of a spicy coriander background. Smells like this should be a tasty brew.

T & M - The taste largely emulates the aroma. That fruity apricot taste (as well as some slight banana) rides along on a bready backbone. Coriander provides a nice complement and adds a little complexity to the brew. Medium bodied and creamy, and it finishes very nicely...very crisp!

D - I think this is a brew I could drink all day long! I'm very impressed by this interpretation of a Belgian Strong Pale Ale and I could see myself stocking this as a regular staple in my refrigerator. Kudos to North Coast...very nicely crafted!

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Photo of littlesgtpepper
4.87/5  rDev +21.8%
look: 4.5 | smell: 5 | taste: 5 | feel: 4 | overall: 5

Had this beer at the North Coast Brewery 09/22/10 in a snifter glass.

This beer has a foamy white head with fairly large bubbles. It gets the scent across very well, which consists of banannas, cloves, honey and a moderate amount of apples. I could sniff this beer all day.

This is simply an amazing beer. It actually tastes like everything described above, along with an herbal spiciniess that lasts through the finish. It's extremely sweet and ever so slightly hoppy. The light carbonation provides a perfect smoothness and makes this beer very easy to drink. There is so much going on here. It finishes with a clean finish and not at all dry.

At the end of the day, I could drink this beer all day. This is a truly fantastic beer and everyone should try this at least once.

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Photo of cnally
4.2/5  rDev +5%
look: 4 | smell: 4 | taste: 4 | feel: 4 | overall: 5

Popped the cork, poured into a tulip.

The appearance is a hazy gold straw color, mild carbonation bubbles rise up, no head to speak of after the white fizz dies down.

Aroma is sweet and bready, yeasty, a hint of lightly toasted grain.

The flavor balances very well between a bready flavor and a boozy sweet light malt. The finish comes in a bit bitter from the hops, but is overshadowed by the alcohol in the forefront.

The feel is hot and fizzy, wild and heady.

I say this a lot about certain beers, where the summation of the elements make for a greater drink than the individual elements deliver. A delicious example here.

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Photo of carpezytha
4/5  rDev 0%
look: 4 | smell: 4 | taste: 4 | feel: 4 | overall: 4

A: Unfiltered honey color with extremely wimpy head.
S: Saddle leather, wet towels, Petit Basque cheese, iron earth.
T: Citrus, moldy honey, brambles, malt, white pepper
M: Turbulent, medium body,
D: Great deal at 8 bucks. Hard to find another 8 dollar 750 that has this much flavor. I am not sure it really fits the style though.

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Photo of andyfrancis
3.89/5  rDev -2.8%
look: 3 | smell: 4 | taste: 4 | feel: 3.5 | overall: 4

Hardest I've ever had to work to get a cork out of a bottle.

has some tiny bubbles, but the head disappeared almost instantly. cloudy gold.

Yeasty, sweet funk on the nose. Hints of spiciness.

Pretty tasty. Tangible mouthfeel without being too chewy. Sugary sweet aftertaste.

Pretty drinkable. The 750ml are all doable. Alcohol is nicely disguised.

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Photo of TheSarge
3.91/5  rDev -2.3%
look: 2.5 | smell: 4 | taste: 4 | feel: 4 | overall: 4

I heard this beer was comparable to Duvel, so far in the appearance... Not so much. The head lacks any retention and the body is very murky. What is there in the way of cranium is white, and shrinks into fine lacing in the blink of eye. The body is orangish gold in color.

The aroma is more than on par. Lots of yeasty goodness along with variations of coriander, orange peel, and bubble gum. This is a refreshing beer in the way of fragrance.

In the taste I get the bubble gum, along with some citrus notes such as an over ripe orange. There is a lot of candied sugar taste in there, which leaves the palate with a powdery feel in the end.

Overall this is a good beer, but I would not put this up to Duvel... Apples and oranges in my opinion.

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Photo of SolomonGrundy
3.98/5  rDev -0.5%
look: 3 | smell: 2.5 | taste: 4.5 | feel: 4 | overall: 5

So, although I'm of the opinion that they have, ahem, adjusted the recipie over the years, here goes...Pours a crisp yellow gold with amber highlights, not much of a head nor lacing. Fairly well carbonated. Nose bears forth cinnamon, Belgian yeastiness, cantaloupe, and a hint of pineapple. Nose is subtle, however...gotta kinda search for it. Flavor is exceptionally well balanced between the yeast and malt. Not very hoppy. The cinnamon and cantaloupe flavors arethere, but in the background. The flavor evolves into some unique stuff, hard to place, but very unique. Rounded of by a very clean finish that makes this well priced beer amazingly quick-drinking, and at the somewhat high ABV of 7.6% that makes this one dangerous. Very good and a must try folks.

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Photo of chickenflea
3.97/5  rDev -0.7%
look: 3.5 | smell: 4 | taste: 4 | feel: 4 | overall: 4

12-oz bottle. I agree with "Nate" and have used some of the words in his description: "Great tripel aroma, sweet honey and citrus oil, candi sugar, Belgian yeast and bit of funk. Golden amber cloudy, with thin off-white head. Medium bodied with medium-heavy carbonation. Starts with grainy sweetness, candi sugar, funky yeasty chalk and light honey. Mild fruity hops and rind bitter in the finish. Sweet tripel aftertase. Nice alcohol warming." This beer is surprisingly refreshing for a tripel. The high carbonation and light texture make if very drinkable.

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Photo of jsprain1
3.47/5  rDev -13.3%
look: 3 | smell: 3.5 | taste: 3.5 | feel: 3.5 | overall: 3.5

A- Pours a pale golden with a thin head that disappates to pretty much nothing. Slightly hazy.
S- Smells of candy sugar and fruit. Some light fruit and citrus scents.
T- Tastes of fruit, light bready taste, rather sugary flavor, and just a hint of earthy yeastyness.
M- Medium-full bodied. Initially the carbonation was spot on. But near the end it kinda thinned out.
D- All in all a pretty tasty beer. I enjoyed it, but it didn't quite live up to the hype for me.

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Photo of Goliath
4/5  rDev 0%
look: 4 | smell: 4 | taste: 4 | feel: 4 | overall: 4

Pours a clear golden color with a one inch bright white head. There is poor head retention and no lacing.

The aroma is ok. Sweet candi sugar, pale malt, and a light fruitiness.

The taste is decent. Pale malt, a bit of sweetness, some spicy yeast, and a touch of fruit all come about.

The mouthfeel is medium bodied and nicely carbonated with a gentle bubble.

Drinkability is fairly high. The ABV is moderately high, but it is well incorporated and easily managed. The flavor profile is fun and easily reminiscient of a Belgian ale which is always a plus. It's really not bad at all.

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Photo of Beerandraiderfan
3.68/5  rDev -8%
look: 3.5 | smell: 3.5 | taste: 3.75 | feel: 3.75 | overall: 3.75

Yellow gold to light orange. Hazy. Aroma was clove, spice, banana, a lot going on.

Taste, lot going on too. Spicyness comes out, alcohol sweetness, more banana, pear, high carbonation. Really enjoyable despite not at all being my thing, lots going on, but not for the sake of being complex on paper.

Relatively cheap for style, I'd say check this out long before the old school traditional ones from across the pond. The future is now!

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Photo of uhhhaaron
3.97/5  rDev -0.7%
look: 3.5 | smell: 4 | taste: 4 | feel: 4 | overall: 4

consumed 04-24-2010, 12oz bottle into oversized wine glass.

Poured a very hazy orange color, with a somewhat thin head that dissipated quickly. Again very cloudy appearance.

Smelled very sweet, yeasty. Sugar cane is present, cloves, orange citrus, little alcohol also in the nose. Apple & caramel are hard to overcome.

Taste is also sweet upfront. Citrus lingers, yeasty, apple flavor, bananas.. A sweet banana boozy ending.. But overall taste is like a caramel covered green apple lollipop..

Mouthfeel is good.. Not too much carbonation.. Light on the mouth

High drinkability even @over 7%..

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Photo of Jemonster
4.17/5  rDev +4.3%
look: 3 | smell: 3.5 | taste: 4.5 | feel: 4.5 | overall: 4.5

A: Poured into a very nice wheat beer glass, it has a pale yellow head that quickly fades away. The body is clear and pure gold. Lookswise, it's not very special.

S: Smell is faint, but this beer was poured very cold. The smell reminds me of autumn. Clean and wheaty...breadlike.

T: Very good, I could drink this all day if it was lower in abv. Refreshing on a hot day, good to drink on a cool day, and everything in between. A very well rounded beer. Just enough forward bitterness, and a lingering sweetness. Besides that, it has what i consider a classic pale ale flavor.

M: Crisp and tingly. The carbonation is perfect for me on this one. Larger bubbles and heavy. Usually, I don't like this level of carbonation, but for this beer, it really makes it shine. It drinks like a root beer!

D: Good, since it is so clean tasting and refreshing, but not a 5 only because of the 7.6% abv.

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Photo of brouwer
4.03/5  rDev +0.8%
look: 4.5 | smell: 4 | taste: 4 | feel: 4 | overall: 4

Picked this up on a whim.

Pours with 1-2 inch head. Golden color - opaque.

Smell is fruity.

Taste of definite fruity tones with yeast undertones typical of Belgian style ales.

Smooth, not heavy, moderately crisp mouthfeel with little aftertaste. Sweeter than most Belgians.

Drinkability is good. Smooth enough to have two, although the bottle is only 12 ounces.

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Photo of mexikrainian
3.3/5  rDev -17.5%
look: 3.5 | smell: 3.5 | taste: 3 | feel: 3.5 | overall: 3.5

12 oz. poured into a Gulden Draak tulip.

Aroma: sweet, honey, spice, cinnamon and citrus.

Appearance: clear, rich gold with white head and small lace.

Taste: watery and estery with dry finish. less than expected for a belgian strong pale ale.

Mouthfeel: medium carbonation and medium body.

Overall impression: bitter, dry belgian wannabe. lacking robust body.

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Photo of Chickenhawk9932
4.25/5  rDev +6.3%
look: 4 | smell: 4 | taste: 4.5 | feel: 4.5 | overall: 4

Pours a nice golden orange with slight off white head. It is cloudy (with goodness), but the rich color is inviting.
Smells of sweet fruit and yeast, with a slight sour mustiness. The sweet thickness overwhelms and draws one in once again.
The taste is fully banging. There is sweet tangerine, a slight citrus bitterness that flows into a grape/wine finnish, while the after-taste lingers with other flavors - muscat, honey, mellon, apricot .... this is a feast.
The mouthfeel is excellent, good carbonation, nice contrast excellent balance. A very drinkable beer - maybe not everyday but to be savored on occassion.

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Photo of Gambrinus1184
3.95/5  rDev -1.3%
look: 4 | smell: 4 | taste: 4 | feel: 3.5 | overall: 4

Poured from a 12-ounce bottle into a Ro's restauarant pint glass.

A:Poured a deep, golden color with a good deal of chilled haze and some yeast strain cloudiness to muddle things up. The dense cap of white, frothy foam reduced to a thin lace.

S: Smells of trademark Belgian yeast spiciness, fruity ale notes of banana and citrus fruits with a whiff of sharp alcohol as well.

T: Flavor is crisp and zesty at first, with a cracked grain and sharp fruity profile. Citrus fruits blend with bubblegum, mint leaves and herbal hop astringency before washing down clean and bitterly sticky sweet.

M: Effervescent, yet medium-full bodied with a crisp, solid balance.

D: A heavy-handed Belgian pale at nearly 8% ABV, North Coast Pranqster is anotehr solid example of how American brewers can duplicate that classic Belgian brewing tradition and modify the yeasts and hop to create something different and truly American. Good for a couple, but the full-on Belgian flavor and ABV would do me in after a few.

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Photo of MenloBeer
3.7/5  rDev -7.5%
look: 4 | smell: 4 | taste: 4 | feel: 3 | overall: 3

Poured from the big 750ML bottle into a tulip glass.

A: Golden, hazy. Lots of carbonation, not a lot of head stuck around after the pour. Not a lot of lacing, either.

S: Bright spices, grains of paradise. Sort of a peppery citrus thing going on. A little musty at the end.

T: Spicy and bitter, but very Belgian in terms of sweetness. Malty undertones, but the spice is what grabs your taste buds. It's a unique American interpretation, for sure. Kind of grassy, with some hints of honey on the edges.

M: Not too heavy, but not as crisp as I would have liked, either. Doesn't hang around the tongue too long, and makes the beer very drinkable.

D: If you like Belgian beers, this is a good beer to try. It isn't a strict adherent to style guidelines, and it's a nice take on Golden Ale. I like the lightness that the carbonation lends to this 7+% ABV beer, it's something of a "champagne effect" (i.e., the bubbles give you something of a head rush on top of the alcohol buzz).

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Photo of Soonami
3.48/5  rDev -13%
look: 4 | smell: 3.5 | taste: 3.5 | feel: 4 | overall: 3

I've heard many stories about this beer, about how Pranqster inspired Vinnie Cilurzo to make Damnation.

This beer poured a very nice golden yellow into a large snifter, but with almost no head even though there was plenty of carbonation. The smell was immediate and I did not really like it. I was expecting a fruitier, ester-like character, but this beer was surprisingly very musty and horsey. It was not unpleasant per se, but nothing like the apple and pear aroma in Duvel.

The beer tasted a little like how I imagine the walls of a damp cellar would, with a bit of assertive spice, malt sweetness and a hint of alcohol in the finish. The carbonation was to style and very pleasing on the tongue.

I think one is all that I could have, the horse blanket flavor is just a bit much for me, I am just very sensitive to that in saisons and wild ales, and this is teetering on the edge.

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Photo of bridgetowhophead
4.15/5  rDev +3.8%
look: 4.5 | smell: 4.5 | taste: 4 | feel: 5 | overall: 3.5

After two long days at OBF, I have had a glut of IPAs and hoppy reds and have decided that the time is ripe to begin exploring belgian ales. After an eye-opening experience with delirium nocturnum the previous night, I went to the local QFC today in search of another great Belgian ale. Settled on Pranqster as I have much love for North Coast.

A: Poured into a wine glass. Foggy orange with high carbonation and a head that quickly dissipates to a thin rim. Minimal lacing. This beer is pleasant to look at.

S: Fruits, spices, malts abound--raisin-banana aromas are quite intriguing. Tickles the nose.

T & M: Tickles the mouth and tongue like the smell tickled the nose. Well balanced, sweet on the finish. Hop bitterness is missed but I realize it is not the style.

D: I have yet to reach the stage where I find belgian ales as drinkable as their american counterparts; this may change over time. Nevertheless, I find that the flavors don't go down quite as smooth to my taste, although they are quite appealing.

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Pranqster from North Coast Brewing Co.
4 out of 5 based on 3,380 ratings.
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