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Stone Cali-Belgique IPA | Stone Brewing

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Stone Cali-Belgique IPAStone Cali-Belgique IPA

Brewed by:
Stone Brewing
California, United States

Style: Belgian IPA

Alcohol by volume (ABV): 6.90%

Availability: Year-round

Notes / Commercial Description:
A California-style IPA with a Belgian twist
AKA Stone Cali-België IPA
First Release:
September 2008

Stone Cali-Belgique IPA features a complex and surprising combination of flavors, but behind the fancy title is the simply delicious Stone IPA. The addition of a carefully selected strain of Belgian yeast adds banana and spice notes to the hoppy brightness of our flagship IPA. Think of it as an otherwise identical twin to Stone IPA that was raised in a Belgian culture. Literally.

Added by gpogo on 07-23-2008

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Reviews: 1,101 | Ratings: 3,398
Photo of paytoplay
4.38/5  rDev +9.8%
look: 4.5 | smell: 4 | taste: 4.5 | feel: 4.5 | overall: 4.5

Very impressed with this brew on at SD Toronado. Like it's labeled, very CA and Belg. Big dose of pine resin / sap. Hops are nice and the mid doens't go so belgium aged hop sweet but still has a hint of it and the great texture. Would this possibly age?? Complex nose and maybe the carbination was a bit high? Nice complexity and mission accomplished as it felt 50/50 CA and Belg.

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Photo of jgurley
4.38/5  rDev +9.8%
look: 4.5 | smell: 4 | taste: 4.5 | feel: 4.5 | overall: 4.5

Pours a pretty gold and looks very much like Stone IPA. An inch of head and nice lacing. I get mango and bright citrus and pine on the nose. Taste is spectacularly bright and sticky, as I expected. Slightly sweet on the front with notes of pineapple, mango and juniper. As it warms, the maltiness comes out. Effervescence is great and the finish is dry. Very drinkable. A lot like Stone's regular IPA but a bit more fruity. Delicious and very drinkable.

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Photo of GPHarris
4.38/5  rDev +9.8%
look: 4.5 | smell: 4 | taste: 4.5 | feel: 4.5 | overall: 4.5

a - poured a two-fingers thick tan head into a snifter. it really coats the glass and left light sheeting and lace throughout. the head billows nicely after each swirl of the glass. the body is a crystal clear and bright amber color.
s - grapefruit with a aromas of belgian yeast that comes through as bread. there is a hint of bubblegum sweetness as well. the belgian aromas seem to come through more.
t - sweet and fruity with light grapefuit hops.
m - fantastic. incredibly smooth and creamy.
d - highly drinkable and a delicious beer.

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Photo of cjacobsen
4.39/5  rDev +10%
look: 3.5 | smell: 4.5 | taste: 4.5 | feel: 4 | overall: 4.5

22 oz bottle into a pint glass

Beer poured a golden straw color with a medium sized, white head. Head lingered for half if not more of the drinking.

The smell was of spices and sweetness, almost grassy.

The taste wasn't what I was expecting at all. It tasted more like a saison brew than an IPA. Really threw me for a loop. Sage and possibly a little thyme or rosemary played in there. Slightly sweet and earthy up front and a little mellow hop character towards the end.

This beer was smooth, easy on the palette and easy to drink. It didn't have the strong, full body hop notes that you would initially expect from an IPA. I don't know if that is a pro or a con, but for hop heads and lovers expecting to get that boat of flavor, this is not the beer to look for it in.

I thought it seemed somewhat close to the Stone/Victory/Dogfish Head collaboration, Saison du BUFF.

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Photo of soupyman10
4.39/5  rDev +10%
look: 3.5 | smell: 4.5 | taste: 4.5 | feel: 4 | overall: 4.5

This beer may have been made specifically for me. It's incredible, and incredibly weird. Basically, Stone has brought together two of my absolute favorite styles: saisons and (D) IPAs. And it tastes exactly how it should, which is freaking amazing (if that sounds good to you).

Appearance is highly IPA-esque. A light copper color with a two finger head that dissolves quickly, leaving a touch of white lacing. Not bad, although nothing really mind blowing.

Nose, on the other hand, is fantastic. All over the place, really - candy malt sweetness, balanced perfectly with strong fruity hops. Yeast, grapefruit, spiciness. Nose is really fantastic.

Flavor, thankfully, is likewise. The hops drop in there a lot stronger than in the nose, and this beer shows itself as a Stone. Some sweet candy up front, then strong fruity hops dominate. A touch of yeast in there at times, making this definitely unique in the IPA department. Definitely a touch of spicy Belgian pale ale in there as well, but this one is definitely a twisted IPA, not a twisted Belgian. Either way, delicious.

Body is great, peppy carbonation that doesn't overwhelm, and medium to full bodied so it coats your mouth but doesn't kick you in the face with its aftertaste.

Again, this is one of those beers that fits right in my wheelhouse, but I totally get others that might be a bit turned off by its weird Belgian-West Coast mix. For me it's a monster, one I could drink often (I'm going to head back down to the Wine Specialist and grab a couple more bottles...).

22 oz/$6.99/Wine Specialist

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Photo of jnfs
4.39/5  rDev +10%
look: 4 | smell: 5 | taste: 4.5 | feel: 3.5 | overall: 4

Pours clear light orange in color, there is a little head that takes a minute to fall. It's moderately carbonated. The aroma is of a IPA or 2X IPA and super citrusy, I think there's a note of caramel on the nose too. This tastes rounded, sweet, Belgian and 2X IPA with intense bitterness and finish. The finish carries on your tongue and sticks to it. A wicked beer, if you don't mind rolling the dice and are up to something different.

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Photo of elevine
4.39/5  rDev +10%
look: 3.5 | smell: 4.5 | taste: 4.5 | feel: 4 | overall: 4.5

Serving Type: 750ml bottle poured into a pint glass

Appearance: Light golden color with good clarity and a short head.

Smell: A nice, strong, hoppy aroma. Typical of an IPA.

Taste: This beer tasted as you would expect, an IPA with a belgian yeast. This is a great twist to the traditional IPA. It has a clean taste, that starts with a little bitterness and a lot of hop flavor. As it finishes, the belgian side of this beer comes through; spicy with a hint of fruit.

Mouthfeel: Light with a medium amount of carbonation.

Drinkability: Very drinkable. A lot of great hop and yeast flavors, and the bitterness is just right. I could drink this one all night long...

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Photo of tjsdomer2
4.4/5  rDev +10.3%
look: 4 | smell: 4.5 | taste: 4.5 | feel: 4.25 | overall: 4.25

Appearance: Golden with good foam.

Smell: Lots of pine and cinnamon...very Christmasy. Excellent spice combination that you wouldn't think would work well in the summer but it does.

Taste/Mouthfeel: More pine and cinnamon. Again, a surprisingly excellent combination for the season. Mouthfeel is very crisp.

Overall Drinkability: An excellent Belgian. Very refreshing as well.

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Photo of bigolbeerbelly
4.4/5  rDev +10.3%
look: 4 | smell: 4 | taste: 4.5 | feel: 4 | overall: 5

Wow this is a delicious beer. Drank one of the 22oz bottles of this at the flying saucer beer pub in Fort Worth.

Had a typical hoppy ipa taste with what I call the mint chewing gum belgian yeast taste. Very Very good. Poured an amber with thick white head which left quite a bit of lacing. Nice floral/citrus IPA aroma.

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Photo of Rudgers73
4.4/5  rDev +10.3%
look: 4 | smell: 4 | taste: 4.5 | feel: 4 | overall: 5

First off, I love the idea that that had for this beer. What better way to better understand beer, brewing, and different brewing methods than to do something like this. It's also a great way to teach people that might not know much about brewing and yeast and brewing conditions how specific things can completely change a beer. Ok. On to the tasting...

It looks exactly like standard stone IPA, but maybe a little bit of cloud that isn't normally there. The head is still very "Stone" and west coast hoppy in character. The hops still punch the nose, but there is an underlying sweetness in that Belgian yeast. Different from that sweetness that you get on the other side of those hops. This is a more round and broad sweetness that come only from Belgium (or areas very close to...) There is bubblegum hidden in the glass too. I love how much the yeast changes everything. The smell, the structure, the flavor, the mouthfeel, and the overall drinking experience. It's like your tongue wants to taste Stone IPA, but the yeast makes you forget what it tasted like. The American Ale yeast normally used in this beer works differently with the hops. It normally acts as strong object for the hops to lean on and use to exert themselves. But the Belgian yeast almost embraces the hops and wraps them up in a buffer. You can still taste the specifically bitter aspect that these hops are traditionally meant to have, but there is so much else going on before you get there, that is doesn't have the same effect. What an interesting beer. Good job Stone. ZOMG!!1

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Photo of fastsrt
4.4/5  rDev +10.3%
look: 4 | smell: 4 | taste: 5 | feel: 4 | overall: 4

22 ounce bottle in a stone cali belgique glass

A: hazy golden, nice cap of white froth

S: citrus hops, fruity

T: I love this one, balanced hoppyness with hints of spice, flowers, rounded flavor profiles ahhh an ipa that has wonderful balance.

M: typical feel, finishing nice and dry, with a fruity flower note.

D: just as high with any other ipa I enjoyed this one alot and will get it again when I see it.

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Photo of juliusbush
4.4/5  rDev +10.3%
look: 4.25 | smell: 4.25 | taste: 4.5 | feel: 4.25 | overall: 4.5

Poured from a bomber into a Sam Adams 16oz glass.

The color is a Golden-amber, not quite copper, yellow.
Producing a Bright white head that reseeded quicker than expected but a nice soapy ish lacing

An initial whiff of a traditional California well hopped beer, followed by subtle banana and fruit esters

The carbonation is the first thing that hits my palate, followed by a kindof tangy hop bitterness pairing With a little malt and mellow sour notes

It leaves a smooth almost oily mouthfeel and the backend settles with a more dull and a more malty bitterness.

My overall impression is that if I didn't know what beer this was, I may have been more confused, but the titles describes a unique style well and it is perfectly suited to be a brilliant Stone product.

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Photo of AZBeerDude72
4.41/5  rDev +10.5%
look: 4 | smell: 4.25 | taste: 4.5 | feel: 4.5 | overall: 4.5

Pour is a dark hazy yellow with a massive amount of head that has awesome lacing. Smells of sweet fruit, citrus, banana, and some orange in there. Taste is very nice, mouth full of fruity tastes & hops with that Belgium yeast backing it all up, just outstanding. The finish is smooth and leaving you wanting more. Stone has cranked this one out of the park, I am a big big fan of this beer, goes well in summer or winter, just a great beer.

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Photo of Veejuh
4.41/5  rDev +10.5%
look: 4 | smell: 4.25 | taste: 4.5 | feel: 4.5 | overall: 4.5

This is a great beer and one I feel is definitely under-rated on here.

Although my experiences with belgian IPAs are very limited, this is hands down the best one I have had.

The funk and spice of the belgian yeast rides right alongside the california hops, both blending together and complimenting each other beautifully. I mean wow, I just drank a stone delicious IPA which was meh, this is WOW!

imagine if stone saison and stone ipa had a baby, this is that baby.

Give it a try if you like belgian style.

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Photo of Strat58cat
4.41/5  rDev +10.5%
look: 4.25 | smell: 4.5 | taste: 4.5 | feel: 4.25 | overall: 4.25

Belgique-what? It's Stone. It's West Coast awesomeness. It's IPA. Don't fence me in.

The look is enticing. It's a deep amber color. The head is strong, an inviting eggshell color above the deeply amber brew. The head retains and laces well to the bottom of the glass, arrogantly displaying the exceptional malt.

The smell is delicious. Stone has calibrated their bold hops into and around an indefinable Belgium influence. It's spice and citrus, not dank pine. Along with Stone Saison, to which it has more than a passing resemblance, Cali-Belgique has one of the most refreshing scents on the market.

The taste is delicious, challenging, and deep. The spice and citrus from the hops form a unique and delicious flavor. The taste is refreshing and delicious, but has a strength that must be balanced by the malt. Here we seem to find the Belgian influence in a deep, luxurious malt with barely a hint of sweetness. Yes.

Perhaps it is worth comparing this IPA from Stone with Stone Saison and Firestone-Walker's Pale 31. The reason is that they are on a similar spicy and citric trajectory. Pale 31 is by far the lightest of these spicy brews, since it's a mere pale ale. Stone Saison falls in the middle. Cali-Belgique fully deserves the title of IPA. It's the fullest flavored and heartiest beer that I have enjoyed on this particular aroma-flavor arc. It pushes the volume of the flavors up, and I like that about it.

The feel of this beer is substantial. This is not a beer you are going to chug. The flavor is strong and heavy, even while maintaining thorough appeal. The malt is thick and has a hint of Belgian sweetness to balance the hops. One may be enough for a while, but not because this beer is unappealing. One may satisfy.

This is one of my favorite IPAs. It is completely different than the "classic" dank or piney IPA. I don't want to drink the same flavor of ales all the time. This unique and flavorful IPA never hits a false note. It's great.

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Photo of Patrick999
4.41/5  rDev +10.5%
look: 3.5 | smell: 5 | taste: 4.5 | feel: 3 | overall: 4.5

Well, the famous Cali-Belgique certainly sold out fast @ Abraxas during Stone Weekend.

Pale golden body, OK head, not exactly the eye-popping beauty of a tulip full of Houblon Chouffe though.

Aroma is of massive Stone hoppiness. Interesting to note that while this is Stone IPA with a Belgian yeast, the hops smell different - much more of a green, leafy fresh tobacco aroma, and less pine and grapefruit that you find in regular Stone IPA. I know the hops are not different, but the aromatic expression comes off different, perhaps modified by the different yeast. At any rate, it's outstanding.

I taste the ultra-green tobacco hop, also some pretty fair notes of chewing gum courtesy of the yeast...nice Juicy Fruits flavor. Between that and the awesome hop, you have a winner. Malts are slightly sweet.

Feel-wise, it just doesn't have the pillowy feel of the top shelf Belgians...yeah, I am thinking of Houblon Chouffe again.

At a *relatively* low ABV, this is very drinkable. It would be nice if it was easier to come by down here in South Florida.

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Photo of boston2bburg
4.42/5  rDev +10.8%
look: 4.5 | smell: 5 | taste: 4.5 | feel: 3.5 | overall: 4

I purchased this bottle skeptical about how well Cali would meld with Belgique, but with a deeply-rooted trust in Stone. The best Belgian ales are powerful and complex yet delicate, a quality American brewers often disregard. Stone, however, can seemingly do it all.

A smell unlike anything I've ever encountered, save a greenhouse, greets me kindheartedly, as if presenting me with a wreath of flowers for my triumph in bringing it home to be released to my senses. It's massively floral, hops blending perfectly with the earthy, fruity, and bubble gum/lemon pound cake sweet yeast aroma. Very suitable for the seasonal warmth and dampness.

The head is modest at first, a finger's worth in a fairly wide snifter. It settles thin and wispy but forms a very fine patch of lacing on the glass. The second (more vigorous) pour produces two fingers, The body is a crystal clear, brilliant golden poppy color, and I was surprised to see it was a filtered beer.

The beer is wet on the palate like morning dew. Earthy, fresh, berry fruit with a touch of lime (think mojitos), blending so well with gentle malt sweetness and again some bubble gum, that it seems the ingredients have aged together for centuries. Alas, being filtered I'm not sure how long you could age it. This is unfortunate as my only real gripe with the flavor is that it's maybe a bit too bitter for that Belgian yeast delicacy. It grows on you though.

Hops and spice coat my mouth, pleasant for me but not for all. Definitely an IPA sharpness to it. Trademark Stone.

Not really a session ale, but not supposed to be. I could see drinking a couple because it's so good, but for most, one will satisfy, if not sit heavy.

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Photo of MicroBeerMan1980
4.42/5  rDev +10.8%
look: 4 | smell: 4.5 | taste: 4.5 | feel: 4 | overall: 4.5

A: Golden in color. Thin and light head that dissipates very quickly. Fine lacy retention.

S: Lemon zest and grapefruit. Belgian candy and sweet malts. There's a tiny bit of ginger lingering on the end.

T: Good hop profile, but not overwhelming. Tangy and sweet. It's like a Belgian golden ale or blond ale, but infused with a larger dose of hops.

M: Good carbonation and slightly tannic. Light on the tongue and easily palatable.

D: It's an interesting take on a classic beer style. Very drinkable.

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Photo of cokes
4.42/5  rDev +10.8%
look: 4 | smell: 4.5 | taste: 4.5 | feel: 4 | overall: 4.5

Misty brass colored with a low, large-pocked dome of ivory. Retention and lacing are sick.
Brightly aromatic of orange rinds, tangerines, clove, pepper, lime oil, dead flowers, and wintergreen. This is backed with shortbread and wet chalkboard.
A plain, bready maltiness is first across the tongue. It sweetens quickly with rock candy and lemon drops, as a coy tartness pops up. A load of cirtic (mostly orange and lime) rinds plays off the yeast driven clove, pepper, wet rocks, and a phantom of vanilla. It's fully floral by the swallow, biting but not overly bitter. There is a softness of dried roses, powdered with sawdust and crushed peppercorns. And it still totes a gentle pucker of tart cirtus.
The body is medium and the carbonation is gentle, if not altogether low given the yeast profile.
It's easy to see how this graduated from experiment to full timer. The drinkability is huge, the hops ring out, and there's enough nuance here to reward frequent revisits.

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Photo of Heatwave33
4.42/5  rDev +10.8%
look: 4 | smell: 4.5 | taste: 4.5 | feel: 4 | overall: 4.5

Poured from a bottle to a Dogfish head Snifter.

Color: Light orange with a white head.

Smell: Hoppy with some delicious fruit notes.

Taste: The fruit notes really come out in the taste with a great hop too.

Mouthfeel: Slightly coarse and smooth with a bit of a dry finish. Also a great kick on the palate.

Overall: This IPA took me by surprise. The fruit notes in the smell and the taste are awesome. This a great all around IPA. Cheers!

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Photo of runner72
4.42/5  rDev +10.8%
look: 4 | smell: 4.5 | taste: 4.5 | feel: 4 | overall: 4.5

serving type: 22 oz bottle

Pours a hazy, amber color. 2 finger, white head which laces the walls. Aroma is very good. Citrus, piney, slight orange and yeast aroma. From the smell, I cannot wait to taste it and it does not dissappoint. Smooth feel in the mouth with lots of carbonation. It's a little sweet up front in the mouth , goes down fairly smooth, then the hops kick in with a little bitterness, but not overpowering. Very well balanced.It's very drinkable too. Excellent beer. I wish that I got more than one bottle!

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Photo of jjh19
4.42/5  rDev +10.8%
look: 4 | smell: 4.5 | taste: 4.5 | feel: 4 | overall: 4.5

Appearance: A rich golden color. 12-15 SRM, perhaps. Poured clear.

Smell: A bright hoppy nose.

Taste: This is where the ale shines. The Cali-Belgique features a nice balance of a sharp hoppiness and a belgian spiciness.

Mouthfeel: Medium bodied, smooth but with sharp initial hops

Drinkability: This is my first try at a California IPA/Belgian hybrid. And I liked it! I really enjoyed the belgain influence on the IPA-ness. You get some really nice hop notes but it's not as heavy handed as a lot of IPA's I've tried. I don't know what the availability of this beer is but if you have a chance, it's definitely worth a pint. Or two.

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Photo of FLBeerGuy
4.42/5  rDev +10.8%
look: 4 | smell: 4.5 | taste: 4.5 | feel: 4 | overall: 4.5

Poured from a bomber into a Chimay goblet, pours a hazy yellow, small white head, not too much on the lacing.

Smell is Belgian yeast, malts & some hops

Taste is some nice Belgian sweetness with a some hop kick at the end. Stone says it's their IPA brewed with Belgian yeast, which is exactly what it taste like, yum!

This is a very drinkable beer, could be a nice session beer, if you can find it.

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Photo of cbutova
4.42/5  rDev +10.8%
look: 4 | smell: 4.5 | taste: 4.5 | feel: 4 | overall: 4.5

Second time around for this one. Pours a golden yellow, slightly orange with a one and a half finger head that leaves light lacing on my pint glass. Head dissipates after a few minutes into a nice creamy coating on the beer, a bit too bubbly though. Smells of hops, piney floral and citrus and a good malt presence in the nose too, the Belgian yeast adds to a good nose in this beer. Tastes of citrus, pine/wood, more hops, some sweetness, belgian yeast and a good malt backbone. Mouthfeel is kind of fizzy for me but is light-medium with a good malt aftertaste coating on the tongue. Drinkability is high here, a fairly light beer, no alcohol taste or other bad tastes, the hops would get tiring if doing a session of this one though, great stuff from Stone once again.

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Photo of citan133
4.42/5  rDev +10.8%
look: 4 | smell: 4.5 | taste: 4.5 | feel: 4 | overall: 4.5

22oz poured into a Smuttynose tulip.

App: Looks a lot like the regular Stone IPA. Nice, two finger frothy white head, much like a tripel head, maybe not quite as thick. Light gold in color, not as orange as the regular ipa. Looks much like a belgium ipa normally would.

Lots of floral and pine hops in the hose, with the pine dominating a ton. Something else in the back of the nose that I can't pick my finger on. This smells really good. A little citrus in there too as it warms.

It tastes almost like a light ipa, if that makes any sense. Has a nice pine/citrus hop character to it, especially in the front, then goes into a yeast/slightly spicy very tripel-tasting part at the mid-point where the belgian yeast is very apparent, and then the finish goes back to a light, almost sweet hop flavor before going bitter again.

Kind of light, much lighter than the hop profile would make me guess. Leaves some nice bitterness in the finish for a long time, nice and crisp, very drinkable.

I didn't expect to be a huge fan of this beer but I am very surprised. This would be a perfect hoppy summer beer for me, I'd get my hop fix while still having something relatively light to drink. The hops are all over the board in terms of flavor, in a good way, and there are lots of layers to delve into, more so than in most other belgian ipa's i've had. Very nice.

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Stone Cali-Belgique IPA from Stone Brewing
3.99 out of 5 based on 3,398 ratings.
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