Belgica | Great Divide Brewing Company

309 Reviews
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Brewed by:
Great Divide Brewing Company
Colorado, United States

Style: Belgian IPA

Alcohol by volume (ABV): 7.20%

Availability: Summer

Notes / Commercial Description:
No notes at this time.

Added by Bitterbill on 04-28-2009

This beer is retired; no longer brewed.

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Reviews: 309 | Ratings: 397
Photo of DoctorDog
1.47/5  rDev -59.8%
look: 3.5 | smell: 1.5 | taste: 1 | feel: 3 | overall: 1

Presentation: 12 oz bottle into an oversize wine glass. "BOTTLED ON MAY 05 2009" stamped on label.

A- Clear and orangish/golden. Pours with minimal white head, which fades quickly to a thin island of bubbles.

S- Woof....very strong cooked vegetable odor...not fact, downright offensive.

T- Absolutely wretched...a disgusting vegetable flavor that can't be worked past. Actively offensive.

M- Fairly crisp with moderate carbonation....from what I can tell, anyways.

D- Drain pour.

Future outlook: I loved the Stone Cali-Belgique, so I was optimistic about this one...disappointment would be a strong understatement.

I contacted customer service at Great Divide over this atrocity of a beer, and their response was overwhelmingly positive. +1 to them for caring about their products and their customers.

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Photo of Gobzilla
1.9/5  rDev -48.1%
look: 3.5 | smell: 1 | taste: 1.5 | feel: 3.5 | overall: 2.5

A: poured a translucent golden orange with yellow highlights and had a thin head leaving a little lacing sticking to the glass.

S: the aroma was honestly of wet dog upfront with peanut notes, faint malts, hops, and hints of grains.

T: sad to say but the flavor was also like the beer was dry hopped by a big dirty wet great dane, with some hops, spices, grains, and ight citrus but really no belgian yeast character to speak of on the palate.

M: the brew was light to medium in body with a moderate amount of carbonation which had spice, mild hoppy, and wet dogg finish.

D: I don't like to bash beers or beer companies cause I respect what they do but this beer has to be the worst one I've had in my beer tasting days.

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Photo of ktrillionaire
1.92/5  rDev -47.5%
look: 3 | smell: 1 | taste: 2 | feel: 3 | overall: 2

Bottled February 03, 2011

A - Pale brassy gold with a thin soapy head.

S - Catty, sweaty and uric. Also candi sugar. And vegetal. Boiled corn-on-the-cob?

T - This is a bad beer. A sweat sock for malt, a litter box for the hop, uggghhh.

M - It's not the feel's fault.

D - This is pretty terrible, I tried to give it a chance, but mehhh I must dump it.

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Photo of gordavidson
1.96/5  rDev -46.4%
look: 3 | smell: 2 | taste: 1.5 | feel: 3 | overall: 2

A- A pale yellow color that is almost perfectly clear. There is a thin but creamy looking white head that leaves some nice lacing.

S- Cooked vegetables and peanut oil. Sadly, that is all I can get out of this. Does not smell appealing to me at all.

T- Exactly the same as the aroma with an assertive sweetness. I suppose that it is a good that the alcohol is well hidden... but that is about all that is enjoyable to me. Actually, the more I got into this, the less I enjoy it.

M- A nice carbonation level. Pretty clean, aside from the aftertaste which I do not find to be enjoyable.

D- I did not enjoy the flavor of this at all. At lease the alcohol is hidden well.

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Photo of wyattshotmaker
2.12/5  rDev -42.1%
look: 4 | smell: 2 | taste: 2 | feel: 2 | overall: 2

poured into a pint glass with a nice inch thick head that is apparently here to stay.nand okay pale yellow,but the head and retention make up for that.

smells sweet,peppery,and funky. a little bit of biscuit in the nose.overall,smells alot like their hades ale which i am not a big fan of.

this is a strange beer.much better than the hades.peppery and spicy yeast flavors that finishes with a pronounced hop character and a hint of biscuity malt.i was expecting a much more pronounced hop flavor.i feel like the yeast flavor really dominates.moderate carbonation is fitting for this style.

i had this beer with some spicy guacamole and blue the hades,i really feel like this beer is missing something,which is compounded by the overbearing yeast flavor.not bad,wouldnt try it again.

if anyone from great divide is reading this,change the yeast(s) you use in the hades and belgica's just way too overwhelming.

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Photo of Georgiabeer
2.19/5  rDev -40.2%
look: 4.5 | smell: 3 | taste: 2 | feel: 2 | overall: 1

Had this on-tap at the Brick Store Pub. Pours amber with a very full head and excellent lacing. Alas, there's where the superlatives end. The rest of the beer is pretty much a mess. The aromas are pretty much of hay and plastic. The taste, unfortunately, is similar. Raw and plastic tasting with lots of fusel alcohols, chemical notes, and finishes with hay. Harsh and hot in the mouth, I didn't come close to finishing this. Yuck.

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Photo of Beaver13
2.26/5  rDev -38.3%
look: 3.5 | smell: 2.5 | taste: 2 | feel: 2.5 | overall: 2

12 oz bottle. Pours a clear light yellow gold with a medium sized frothy head that retains well and laces the glass.

The aroma is a little sweet vegetal bready malts and some earthy funky yeast.

The flavor is mostly a strange tarry yeasty bitterness - not very complex or balanced at all. Some sweet vegetal malts come out as it warms. The mouthfeel is light to medium bodied with low carbonation.

Overall, I didn't care for this at all. I haven't really liked the Belgian IPAs, but this is my least favorite so far. It just tastes kind of off.

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Photo of Minkybut
2.26/5  rDev -38.3%
look: 3 | smell: 2 | taste: 2 | feel: 3 | overall: 2.5

I poured this terrible tasting beer into my tumbler at 50 degrees. The beer was a little cloudy and poured a fair white head. The head however did not last long. The beer was sour tasting and a bit hoppy with a real yeasty pasty taste. It did have great lacing, whoopie! I will not buy again as I do not like sour beer.

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Photo of yeahnatenelson
2.35/5  rDev -35.8%
look: 3 | smell: 3 | taste: 2 | feel: 3.5 | overall: 1.5

Appearance -- Pours a bright golden straw hue with a slim cap of sudsy, lily-white head. Moderate lacing.

Smell -- Beignet, pink bubblegum, abundance of clove oil, and leafy hops.

Taste -- Lots of clove oil and a hint of bubblegum, malt base is sweet and soft, evoking sugar cane and flaky pastry. The hop character is a bit unpleasant. While certainly bitter, the character evokes bitter spring greens, pea pods, and canned green beans.

Mouthfeel -- Medium in body with moderate tight carbonation. Nothing spectacular, but solid.

Drinkability -- I'm shocked at how unpleasant this is! Great Divide is a brewery I'm accustomed to putting forth a good effort, but this is difficult for me to finish. The 'Belgian' character is lackluster and clashes with the malt base, and the hop profile is just terrible. With the influx of SO many Belgian-styled IPA's, it's hard to choose this over so many other better examples that are available year-round.

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Photo of claspada
2.4/5  rDev -34.4%
look: 3 | smell: 3 | taste: 2 | feel: 3 | overall: 2

Pours a pilsner like, golden hay color with visible clarity. Pretty quick white head with some small aftermath like foam dissipating.

The aroma is a clean grassy, wet hay, some open field, and slight bready malts.

The taste starts with toasted mlats and a thin mouthfeel. The middle has some of the grassy bitterness from the aroma turn into a more flowers and bitter fruits with a syrupy finish. This beer is just not balanced for me and is not working out well. Hard to finish for sure. As the beer warms the front of the palate takes on a slight metallic twang. The beer has an odd bubbly, grasy hop, and toasted pilsner malt finish. Pass...

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Photo of DerBayer
2.43/5  rDev -33.6%
look: 3.5 | smell: 3 | taste: 2 | feel: 3 | overall: 2

The best thing about this beer is its look - copper and chestnut with thick creamy off-white head

The smell is best described as uninspiring but inoffensive with hops dominating. The taste is similar but there is an unpleasant aftertaste which I cannot pin down..

Will not have this one again disappointing and hopefully skunked...

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Photo of Jeffo
2.53/5  rDev -30.9%
look: 3.5 | smell: 3 | taste: 2 | feel: 3 | overall: 2.5

Got this at Bert's Bierhuis in Utrecht.

From a bottle into a snifter.

APPEARANCE: Pours a one finger medium-looking white head with good retention. Amber orange in color with medium slow moving carbonation. Head fades to a thin wisp and a ring. Splotchy wisp remains until the end and leaves bits of lacing down the glass.

SMELL: A little mute here. The pilsner malts are pretty evident. Grainy malt and some yeasty spices; cloves and tyme perhaps. Notes of pears, green apples, and seven some strawberries too. Not bad, but just not bold enough to make a statement.

TASTE: Grainy pilsner malt and some spicy yeast notes up front. Some clove and pepper notes in there, as well as some green apples. Finishes spicy and with a touch of hop bitterness. Aftertaste is bold and lingering with some sweet grainy malt, spicy pepper notes, and a good dose of bitterness. Much bigger than the nose. Too bad the pilsner malts are clashing with all the good stuff that's going on here.

PALATE: Medium body and carbonation. Creamy on the palate, goes down smooth with a slight warming burn at the back and finishes slightly mouth-coating.

OVERALL: A decent beer, but the pilsner malt just doesn't fit the IPA profile very well. I was constantly trying to enjoy the spicy Belgian yeast and the bitter hop profile, but that grainy pilsner malt was just always in the way. The pilsner malts should definitely be substituted for pale malts in my books. Great Divide is one of my favourite breweries, but I think they missed the boat on this one.

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Photo of magictrokini
2.55/5  rDev -30.3%
look: 3.5 | smell: 3.5 | taste: 2 | feel: 3 | overall: 2

Poured a clear, bright gold with a foamy white head. Good lacing. Pleasant, perfume hop aroma. Sweet malt and spice, with a boozy feel. Popping mouthfeel gives a sharp edge that is welcome. Unfortunately, the taste did not do much for me. Soapy, as in VERY soapy. The hops used (Amarillo) do not mix well with the strain of Belgian yeast. Aspirin/bitter flavors come out with the sweet yeast and just don't blend. Sweet finish. I was hoping for a much, much better beer given the brewer.

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Photo of haazer
2.58/5  rDev -29.5%
look: 3.5 | smell: 3 | taste: 2 | feel: 3.5 | overall: 2.5

Poured out into a tulip glass.

A- Holy head. A titled pour produces a huge bubbly white monster. Some patchy webs of lace are left, but damnit it takes forever. The brew itself is a dirty cloudy yellow color. Pretty opaque.

S- Strong belgian yeast scent. Fruity aroma's of pear, lemon and some clove. Some spices are present, perhaps some white pepper. Alcohol phenols in the nose weaken the overall aroma.

T- Ahhhh, if only I read the side of this thing. Pilsner malt is used in this guy and its noticeable in the flavor. Call it what you will but I just can't stand anything Pilsner. Other flavors include the white pepper and clove. There is a pleasant aftertaste of citrus. Just can't get over the initial pilsner.

M- Mouthfeel is nice when you take away the flavor. Good feel of carbonation on the tongue, and the brew drinks fairly smooth. Light to medium in body, but closer to medium.

O- Get rid of the pilsner malt, use any other malt bill but that and this would be a much better beer. That killed it for me. Normally I love Great Divide, and I'd like to say nicer things, but get rid of that Pils crap!!!

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Photo of csiewert
2.66/5  rDev -27.3%
look: 2 | smell: 3.5 | taste: 2 | feel: 3 | overall: 3

This beer pours a hazy pale golden color with little to no head. The aroma has hints of caramel and earthy floral hops. The taste is fairly strange... It starts with some citrus and caramel, then becomes floral and finishes very earthy, and leaves a very harsh aftertaste. The mouthfeel is kind of empty as well. Overall not great divides greatest effort.

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Photo of MikeBrandman
2.72/5  rDev -25.7%
look: 4 | smell: 4.5 | taste: 1.5 | feel: 4 | overall: 2

A - Pours into a Sam Adams Sensory glass with one finger of slowly receding bubbly white head. Leaves a thin amount of white lacing down the glass as it goes. Very visibly carbonated but very much transparent. Looks more like a pilsner or some other lager than a Belgian Ale. Still, looks appetizing and refreshing.

S - Immediate smell of white grapes and bananas. Slightly hoppy. Mostly a fruity smell. Very pleasing.

T - This beer smelled and looked so promising but the taste fell so short. A lot of flavor even in small sips. Very bitter, but not in a good hoppy way. Taste is rather metallic, although this might be a minty flavor. Make sure you get the beer all over your tongue to add some sweetness to get the edge off of this one. It still has the Belgian style banana yeasty flavor, but the hop bitterness of the India Pale Ale side isn't there.

MF - A bit on the watery side. Keeps this beer refreshing and crisp. Good texture for this beer.

D - Overall, the strength of this taste really kills this beer. Even for 7%, it's a bit too strong to be drinkable.

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Photo of sevopie
2.73/5  rDev -25.4%
look: 4.5 | smell: 1.5 | taste: 3 | feel: 4 | overall: 2.5

Brilliant golden in color with a rocky tan head that laces moderately well.

Smells like wet dog mixed with grass clippings. Not very pleasant.

Taste improves upon the smell, but still doesn't shine. The funky yeast just doesn't quite meld with the hops. Its very spicy on the finish as well, and it feels like the hops and the natural spiciness are fighting with each other for control of your palate.

Light and zesty on the palate in a good way.

The flavors just don't match up the way I had hoped. Overall, this isn't a terrible brew, but its certainly not one I will be revisiting.

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Photo of specksnreds
2.74/5  rDev -25.1%
look: 4 | smell: 2.5 | taste: 2.5 | feel: 4 | overall: 2.5

Disappointing. Looks beautiful in its golden splendor, smells too estery and one dimensional, metallic finish, nice mouthfeel and I may or may not finish it. Where's the IPA portion of this beer? Skip it and move on at this price (I expected A LOT more). Glad it was only a single.

Did not finish it. It now sleeps with the fishes.

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Photo of charliedvrs
2.78/5  rDev -24%
look: 3.5 | smell: 3 | taste: 2.5 | feel: 3.5 | overall: 2.5

A - pours a hazy yellow with a fluffy one finger of head that left a good amount of lacing.

S - Sugary bread and cereal. Little bits of lemon and some strong yeast presence. When I remind myself it's there I can smell some hops.

T - I tasted almost no hop presence. All yeast and sweet malts. The yeast gives a belgian banana, bubblegum flavor. Some spices and a little tart. A slight citrus undertone, maybe that was the hops?

M - Medium mouthfeel with medium-high carbonation. Drinks pretty smooth.

D - Didn't enjoy this beer. There just seemed to be nothing to it. Just a sweety, malty belgian that left your mouth a bit dry.

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Photo of malcontent
2.78/5  rDev -24%
look: 4.5 | smell: 4 | taste: 2 | feel: 3.5 | overall: 2

A brilliant pale gold body with minimal but sturdy snow-white head. Lacing is copious and steadfast.

Some herbal pungency to the hop aroma here with the faintest lemongrass scent in tow. Sweet malt undercurrent makes itself known but takes a backseat to the other attributes.

Man, talk about the wrong combination of hops and malt. Both are strong in their own right but combine to create a vegetal (brussels sprouts anyone?) beer. The hops are not citrusy but rather woody/herbal and clash in a harsh way with the somewhat sweet but mostly earthy body.

There's got to be candi sugar in here because the slickness I'm detecting is not all hop-derived. Otherwise full-bodied and correct for the style. This is a burgeoning genre but to see it done right look the direction of Chouffe Houblon. Great Divide gets an "A" for effort but that's as far as I'm willing to go...

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Photo of praufs01
2.8/5  rDev -23.5%
look: 3 | smell: 3 | taste: 2.5 | feel: 3 | overall: 3

Appearance - Clear Yellow with a frothy white head.

Aroma - Very floral... Almost like smelling potpourri.

Taste - The flavor was of sour citrus and a little coriander.

Overall - Unusual brew in aroma and flavor. I was not overly impressed with this one.

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Photo of hopfacebrew
2.81/5  rDev -23.2%
look: 4 | smell: 3 | taste: 2.5 | feel: 3.5 | overall: 2.5

Poured from bottle to pint glass the beer pours a hazy and opaque yellow golden color with a huge 2.5 finger white head, good retention and lacing, looks good. The aroma starts off with a strong belgian yeast along with fruity character: citrus, pears, apples along with clove and hints of bubblegum and pepper. However the alcohol emerges and starts to dominate and thus makes the beer less approachable. The flavor follows suit with an initial rush of belgian clove and bubblegum. Hints of fruit found in the nose as well as a more pronounced pepper flavor. The malt doesn't seem to work with these flavors and doesn't come across balanced, like the flavors are fighting one another and not in a pleasant fashion. Medium bitterness. Alcohol again emerges at the end and as the beer warms. Turn off. Fairly smooth and lighter side of medium bodied. Good carbonation. Overall, I was less than impressed with this beer. Too boozy, flavor doesn't mesh well. Won't return.

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Photo of Reaper16
2.82/5  rDev -23%
look: 2.5 | smell: 3 | taste: 2.5 | feel: 3.5 | overall: 3

12oz. bottle served into a pint glass

Pours a straw yellow color with touches of honey giving it some added definition. Not too hazy; certainly not pretty. Less than a finger of eggshell head at its apex, the foam doesn't retain whatsoever. This is a big ol' glass of meh.

The nose is not complex or challenging. I get some apple core aroma, some Juicy Fruit chewing gum action. For a Belgian "IPA," the hops are subdued. I'm smelling some Dandelions, some lawn weeds, coming from the hops and that's it. Lots of medicinal astringency in the nose, too. I worry about the amount of phenols in the beer.

Yup. First sip confirms my suspicions about the phenols being thrown off by the Belgian yeast strain. Total Band-Aid action going on. This is too phenolic. The plasticy, medicinal, Band-Aid like phenolic character (which is not in any sense an inherently bad flavor) dominates the appleskin and bubblegum flavors. What little hop bitterness is present in Belgica is masked by the phenolic character. This doesn't taste bad, but it is severely imbalanced (and not what a Belgian IPA should taste like).

The mouthfeel is pretty decent. It isn't heavy (though certainly medium-bodied), and there is more effervescence than the appearance of the beer had me believe. The drinkability is kind of alright, actually, if you like phenols (and me being a Saison fan, I do). But the ABV% is not in a session range, and the imbalance of flavor would prevent most people from making a night of this beer even if it had less alcohol.

Though I like Great Divide a lot, I've never been impressed with their Belgian inspired offerings. It isn't the brewery's strong suit. Belgica does nothing to change my mind.

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Photo of klikger
2.83/5  rDev -22.7%
look: 3.5 | smell: 3 | taste: 2.5 | feel: 3 | overall: 3

12 oz bottle poured into a standard pint glass

A - Clear, bright gold, with a fairly large white head.

S - Funky bread, coriander, banana, and New-SkinĀ® brand liquid bandage.

T - All yeast, malt, and metal on first taste. This is not a good thing. As it warms, banana becomes apparent, even prevalent, but it's more banana-flavored NowandLater candy than the real thing. Hops are here somewhere, but I can't find them. The bottle was less than a month old, so age is not the issue. I'm not sure where this went wrong, but suffice it to say that I'm happy that they didn't dub this Belgian Titan.

M - Heavy for a Belgian IPA. It's not syrupy, but it feels thicker than it should.

D - Oddly enough for a 7.2%, I noticed the alcohol here. I could drink more if forced, but the taste precludes this for yours truly.

I was really looking forward to drinking this. Titan is one of my favorite IPAs, and, up until this point, I haven't had a Great Divide beer which I didn't at least like, and there are several which I love. The taste was off from the get-go, and it never recovered. I'm a big fan of the style, but this one didn't do it for me.

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Photo of claminat420
2.88/5  rDev -21.3%
look: 3 | smell: 2.5 | taste: 3 | feel: 4 | overall: 2.5

A- poured a slightly hazy straw color with a white head. very little lacing.

S- all i can smell is the typical belgian yeast. lemony and spices. i thought this was an ipa also?

T- same as smell. giving it a notch up tho cuz the alcohol is undetected in my book.

M- medium bodied. good carbonation.

D- the only 6 pack i'll ever buy.

Overall- after having great divide's colette (spelling?) the other day this brew seems like the same one but more watered down. my biggest beef with this turd brew is how they claim it is a belgian ipa. like i get the belgian but absolutely no ipa. i've had the fortune to try flying dog's raging bitch before they took it out of michigan and i thought that beer had some hoppness to it.

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Belgica from Great Divide Brewing Company
3.66 out of 5 based on 397 ratings.
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