Barbãr (Belgian Honey Ale) | Brasserie Lefèbvre SA

BA SCORE
87
very good
394 Ratings
Barbãr (Belgian Honey Ale)Barbãr (Belgian Honey Ale)
BEER INFO

Brewed by:
Brasserie Lefèbvre SA
Belgium
brasserielefebvre.be

Style: Belgian Strong Pale Ale

Alcohol by volume (ABV): 8.00%

Availability: Year-round

Notes / Commercial Description:
No notes at this time.

Added by Todd on 10-10-2000

BEER STATS
Ratings:
394
Reviews:
172
Avg:
3.87
pDev:
12.4%
 
 
Wants:
23
Gots:
98
For Trade:
0
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Ratings: 394 |  Reviews: 172
Photo of Sammy
3.48/5  rDev -10.1%
look: 3.5 | smell: 3 | taste: 3.5 | feel: 3.5 | overall: 4

Bottle at Chancey Smith. Decent drinking Belgian pale. Unexceptional other than some orange in flavour, honey in the secondary. Golden yellow coloured body with some head, lots of lace. High carbonation. Neutral aromas, perhaps the honey absorbs it.Easy mouthfeel, the smoothness from the honey overrides the carbonation. Nice summer Belgian.

 342 characters

Photo of jaydoc
4/5  rDev +3.4%

Photo of UCLABrewN84
3.97/5  rDev +2.6%
look: 3.5 | smell: 4 | taste: 4 | feel: 4 | overall: 4

Best before 5/29/14.

Pours a hazy orange with a foamy beige head that settles to a partial film on top of the beer. Small streaks of lace form around the glass on the drink down. Small jelly-like clumps of sediment are seen floating around in the glass after the pour. Smell is of malt, grain, honey, fruit, and slight spice aromas. Taste is much the same with honey and grape-like fruit flavors on the finish. There is a very mild amount of spice bitterness on the palate with each sip. This beer has a good level of carbonation with a crisp and prickly mouthfeel. Overall, this is a good beer that is tasty and easy to drink.

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Photo of spycow
4/5  rDev +3.4%

Photo of StonedTrippin
4.02/5  rDev +3.9%
look: 3.5 | smell: 4 | taste: 4 | feel: 4.5 | overall: 4

never in a million years could one guess this was 8% abv by smelling or tasting it. it pours a very light sandy yellow color with a tall belgian style white head and a mild haze. smells like fresh floral clover honey and belgian yeast. this is a very bright beer, light in flavor but complex. honey flavor but not sweetness, pollen, wheat malt, and a gentle peppery quality are all present here in the flavor. mouthfeel is prime, light and crisp, infinitely drinkable, with fine carbonation and a miraculously satisfying finish. this is a great bottle of beer, and one i very much look forward to trying again. the honey is as well balanced yet prominent in this beer as in any beer ive tasted. bravo!

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Photo of kjkinsey
4/5  rDev +3.4%

Photo of Knapp85
3.53/5  rDev -8.8%
look: 4 | smell: 3.5 | taste: 3.5 | feel: 3.5 | overall: 3.5

This beer poured out as a nice lookin golden color. It has a nice white fluffy head on top and leaves a light lacing on the glass. The smell of the beer is sweet, it's got some Belgian yeast aromas and has just a little bit of honey in there too. The taste of the beer is on the sweeter side, it doesn't really taste like a Braggot ale or anything. It is more or less just a sweet golden ale. The mouthfeel had a good carbonation to it and still has a smooth body. Overall this beer wasn't too bad. Not my favorite but not bad.

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Photo of t0rin0
3.83/5  rDev -1%
look: 4.5 | smell: 4 | taste: 3.5 | feel: 4 | overall: 4

Had this on tap at the Lucky Baldwins 10th Annual Belgian fest on 2/15/09.

Pours clear golden brown color with good lacing and good retention.

Aroma and taste are almost the same with mostly honey dominating. Also some sweet malts and some spiciness. The spiciness is hidden by all the sweetness.

Medium bodied and drinkable but a bit too sweet for my tastes.

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Photo of oriolesfan4
4/5  rDev +3.4%

Photo of BEERchitect
3.45/5  rDev -10.9%
look: 3.5 | smell: 3.5 | taste: 3.5 | feel: 3 | overall: 3.5

Always game to try the new stuff to the neighborhood. It is not surprising that this beer is caught somewhere between a Witbier and a Mead. The pour brings out more of a mead appearance with a honey-like color (golden, light amber) with a heaviness and legging like brandy. Aromas are also mead-like up front with a sharp honey, nectar scent before the wheat malts, barley, and twangy yeast character builds in. Estery, citrusy, and flowery throughout the nose. Flavors heavily favor the sweet honey flavor, with a backup of wheat malt, barely, yeasty flavors and herbal tea notes to follow. The hop flavors give a much needed complexity, balance, and variety. Spicy with Wit-like corriander, curraco, pepper, and a lot of yeast contributions. The textures as expected are a bit syrupy, heavy, and more cloying than malty. A hoppy bittering is the only repreive. Finishes spicy, warm, and sweet -- a good substitute for a mead. Similar to the ancient brewed concoctions that are being revived by some Dogfish Head brews. Interesting, but not exactly sessionable.

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Photo of biboergosum
3.89/5  rDev +0.5%
look: 4.25 | smell: 4 | taste: 3.75 | feel: 3.75 | overall: 4

330ml bottle, part of the '1/2 Meter of Beer' mixed-pack from this brewery now available in Alberta.

This beer pours a clear, medium golden amber colour, with three fat fingers of puffy, frothy, and somewhat creamy off-white head, which leaves some broad, continental drift lace around the glass as things lazily sink away.

It smells of musty field honey, gritty and grainy pale malt, a touch of caramel/toffee sweetness, warm, and indistinct tropical fruit, yeast, a bit of black pepper, and earthy, leafy hops. The taste is dry honeyed crackers, bready pale malt, a floral candied character, one rather akin to the flossy sort, white grape juice concentrate, muddled earthy spices, still understated leafy, weedy hops, and a rising, but respectful enough metallic booze astringency.

The bubbles are pretty well integrated, and manifest as a subtle edginess throughout, the body a steady medium weight, and smooth in the most basic sense, i.e. one does not sense the lack of it. It finishes off-dry, natch, the honey still pulling a certain diva routine, persisting among some near-equally heady maltiness, and the burgeoning sweetness of that bristling 16-proof booze.

Being from Canada, the very idea of honey ale does not inspire a whole lot of hope on my beer radar when I am presented with an example of such. Leave it to some old-world brewing goodness to break me out of that bit of reverie - this one performs said charitable act with aplomb. Honey? Yes, up the wazoo - but moderated, by grain, yeast, hop, and yes, alcohol alike, to provide us with a crazily workable, and drinkable end result.

 1,608 characters

Photo of kojevergas
3.2/5  rDev -17.3%
look: 3 | smell: 3 | taste: 3.5 | feel: 2 | overall: 3.5

Served on draught into a Barbar glass in a bar in Ghent, Belgium. Reviewed from notes.

A: One finger head of fair thickness but no cream. Hazy orange-copper colour. Decent retention.

Sm: Fresh barley. Some souring hops. Subtle fruit notes, but not many. Honey is mysteriously missing.

T: Fruit ester and souring hop blend. Too simple and poorly built for the style. Balanced to an extent. Where's the alleged honey?

Mf: Nicely coarse but a bit too dry. Doesn't match the sour tones of the body at all.

Dr: Not a good session beer, but maybe worth a go for fans of the style. Hides its relatively high abv pretty well. Very affordable in Belgium.

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Photo of brentk56
3.53/5  rDev -8.8%
look: 4 | smell: 3.5 | taste: 3.5 | feel: 3.5 | overall: 3.5

Appearance: Pours a slightly hazy golden color with a frothy head that hangs around for the duration while leaving a dancing pattern of lace on the chalice

Smell: Coriander, fermented honey, wheat and bitter orange peel

Taste: Starts out with a bready, wheat flavor that is joined by intense spiciness by mid-palate, as the coriander and bitter orange peel jump into the fray; after the swallow, the fermented honey and wheat/banana flavors take center stage; the finish is medicinal and spicy, however, with a mead-like element

Mouthfeel: Medium body with prickly carbonation

Drinkability: While this is a unique product and I applaud the craft that went into making, I just don't care for the flavor profile; too medicinal for my tastebuds

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Photo of emerge077
4.15/5  rDev +7.2%
look: 4 | smell: 4 | taste: 4 | feel: 4.5 | overall: 4.5

Pours an amber yellow tone with high clarity. Lots of fizzy champagne streams of carbonation. Bottle has a somewhat goofy "kokopelli" motif.

Smells crisp, like mild hops, with a bubblegum yeast note. Earthy coriander is present in the taste, and later comes out as the glass warms up. Light bitterness seems more attributed to the Styrian and Hallertau hops (per label) than the orange peel citrus also listed on the label. Reminds me of a Wit without the wheat. Slight honey sweetness.

Very easy drinking, similar in that respect to Duvel. Deceptive abv, and it's not easy to sip...more of a quaffer. Would be a nice sessioner in a 750mL serving.

 654 characters

Photo of Phyl21ca
3.1/5  rDev -19.9%
look: 3 | smell: 3 | taste: 3 | feel: 4 | overall: 3

Bottled under license by the Cheval Blanc in Montreal. Light golden ale witha medium head that did not disapear too quickly. The honey taste is very discreet. I could recognize the usual taste of malt from the Cheval Blanc. Enjoyable but not exceptionnal

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Photo of dmorgan310
3.75/5  rDev -3.1%

Photo of DrBier
3.75/5  rDev -3.1%

Photo of TheManiacalOne
3.5/5  rDev -9.6%
look: 3.5 | smell: 3.5 | taste: 3.5 | feel: 3.5 | overall: 3.5

Poured from a 12oz bottle into a US tumbler pint glass.

A: The beer is a murky gold color, with a thin off-white head that fades slowly and leaves a thin lace on the glass.

S: The aroma contains honey, Belgian yeast, light caramelized malts, some spices and a touch of hops.

T: The taste starts out with a mild sweetness from flavors of honey, caramel and fruit. Then some breadiness comes in from Belgian yeast and a hearty but not too heavy malt character. The hops presence is mild but complementary and brings some balance. The after-taste is slightly sweet.

M: Crisp and a little smooth, medium body, medium carbonation, finish is slightly sticky.

O: A little tasty, goes down ok, not too filling, good kick, good representation of style, this is a decent beer but there are several others in the style that I would choose first.

 839 characters

Photo of dcmchew
4.23/5  rDev +9.3%
look: 4.25 | smell: 4.25 | taste: 4.25 | feel: 4 | overall: 4.25

Photo of Ciocanelu
3.5/5  rDev -9.6%
look: 3.5 | smell: 3.5 | taste: 3.5 | feel: 3.5 | overall: 3.5

Photo of russpowell
3.59/5  rDev -7.2%
look: 5 | smell: 3.5 | taste: 3.5 | feel: 3.5 | overall: 3.5

Enjoying this in a Barbar mug!

Pours honey colored with 2 fingers+ of fantastic fluffy pearl white head. Insane lacing & head retention

S: Fruitty with grassy hops, plus candi sugar

T: Herbal hops, dryness & much apricot, along some warming booze up front. Much dryness, a touch of lemon, apricots, figs, boozey persimmons & a touch of cardboard as this warms. Finishes boozey with much dryness, figgy & leafy hops

MF: Medium bodied, with soft carbonation, balances pretty good once warm

Drinks alright had this on tap in Germany at a beer fest & it was better. An interesting take on the style that may have suffered just a bit during travel. If I ever drink it again, I will let it warm WAY up

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Photo of BuckeyeNation
4.1/5  rDev +5.9%
look: 4 | smell: 4 | taste: 4 | feel: 4 | overall: 4.5

"The true barbarian is he who thinks everything barbarous but his own tastes and prejudices."

--William Hazlitt

Sunny tangerine with lemon yellow borders. Interestingly, there are no yeast in the glass and none left in the bottle. No matter the style, Belgian brewers bull's eye the head more often than not. The manila colored cap, which is both lightly creamy and slightly sticky, is beginning to lay down an attractive array of lace.

The nose is musky and golden fruity. Although I might not have been able to identify the precise ingredients on smell alone, their general properties are easy to pick out. In other words, honey adds sweetness, bitter orange peel adds citrusiness, and coriander adds spiciness. Points for uniqueness and quality, despite a wee lack of power.

Barbar tastes exactly like it should taste, given the ingredients. Strange as it may sound, that isn't always a given. Specifically, it tastes like an Imperial witbier sweetened and flavored with honey. It also tastes unmistakably Belgian, which is a very good thing.

Even though a bolder Barbar might have been a better Barbar, every member of the flavor profile is identifiable and works well in concert with its friends. This is a beautifully balanced beer in all respects. Not just sweet versus bitter, but earthy honey versus tangy orange versus spicy coriander versus estery Belgian yeast.

Warming rounds things off even more and ramps up flavor intensity another notch or two. It's difficult to imagine anyone liking Belgian pales, witbiers and honey-added beer and not liking this Brasserie Lefebvre creation. I didn't say Belgian *strong* pale ales on purpose, because the 8.0% ABV drinks more like 6.0%.

The mouthfeel gets it done. The honey adds a supple quality and a hint of stickiness, while keeping things in the fast lane. Even though the beer doesn't possess the delicate creamy lightness of the very best Belgian ales, the above score was easily earned.

Barbar (meaning 'barbarian') is anything but an unmannered brute. It's a civilized tipple that combines a handful of classic flavors into an enjoyable, drinkable whole. In spite of the $3.49 price tag, I could be convinced to buy it again. Actually, it wouldn't take any convincing at all.

 2,247 characters

Photo of Slatetank
3.75/5  rDev -3.1%

Photo of paulish
4.25/5  rDev +9.8%

Photo of WVbeergeek
3.2/5  rDev -17.3%
look: 3.5 | smell: 3.5 | taste: 3 | feel: 3.5 | overall: 3

Appears a honey golden semi clouded hue with effervescent bubbles streaming up to form a bright white head even fine Belgian style lacing. Aromatics mild cat pee funkiness, coriander spiciness with soft honey sweetness. Mild citrus peel with perfumey herbal hop accents, the smell works for me. Flavor brings upfront honey sweetness balanced with spicy coriander/citrus peel combo pale biscuit malt sweetness with light herbal grassy hops in the finish. I'm not crazy about honey beers but this one wasn't cloying in anyway pretty smooth and straight forward witbier, honey infused hybrid of a Belgian blonde ale. Mouthfeel is light to medium bodied with effervescent bubbly carbonation tickles the palate but flows nicely. Drinkability is decent not a session beer, but I'm glad I gave it a shot although in the future I know compared to some of my favorite Belgians I probaby won't return to this one in the near future.

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Barbãr (Belgian Honey Ale) from Brasserie Lefèbvre SA
3.87 out of 5 based on 394 ratings.
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