Enlightenment: The Age Of Raisin | Renaissance Brewing

Enlightenment: The Age Of RaisinEnlightenment: The Age Of Raisin
28 Ratings
Enlightenment: The Age Of RaisinEnlightenment: The Age Of Raisin

Brewed by:
Renaissance Brewing
New Zealand (Aotearoa)

Style: Belgian Dark Ale

Alcohol by volume (ABV): 6.50%

Availability: Limited (brewed once)

Notes / Commercial Description:
No notes at this time.

Added by Vanz on 01-27-2014

This beer is retired; no longer brewed.

Bros Score:
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Ratings: 28 |  Reviews: 9
Reviews by Cramshawbar:
Photo of Cramshawbar
4/5  rDev +15.6%

More User Reviews:
Photo of DannyBaldoni
3.75/5  rDev +8.4%

Photo of Sammy
3.5/5  rDev +1.2%

Photo of Vanz
3/5  rDev -13.3%

Photo of Brutaltruth
3.45/5  rDev -0.3%
look: 4 | smell: 3.25 | taste: 3.5 | feel: 3.25 | overall: 3.5

Enjoyed from the 500 ml bottle in a snifter. This ale pours a brownish red with a moderate light tan head of dissipating foam that dies down to a thick ring and light lacing. Nose of brown sugars, earthy yeast, and raisins. Flavors start with a brown sugar profile on the front, then a mild raisin note comes through on the back with a mellow yeast note. VERY high carbonation sears the taste and makes most of the flavors very subtle with it's effervescent mouth feel. Finish is fairly dry. An interesting take on the style, yet detractors from the overall brew are the carbonation.

 589 characters

Photo of DaveBar
3.58/5  rDev +3.5%
look: 3.75 | smell: 3.75 | taste: 3.5 | feel: 3.5 | overall: 3.5

Purchased at the LCBO for a mighty $7.00 or so for a 500ml bottle. Served at 6deg C in a challis.

A- Very good. Opens well not much head though. Nice and dark

S- Very good. Very boozy though. Rather basic roasted malt and caramel.

T- Slight back of the mouth raisins but that's it. Not much else. Can taste the raisin seeds barely

M- Ok but not great

O- Pretty good but will not buy again. Not even worth half the price.

Food Pairing

I tried this with a BBQ'd T bone steak and it was way light and watery. Super low flavor


 536 characters

Photo of Phyl21ca
3.5/5  rDev +1.2%

Bottle: Poured a dark brown color ale with a large foamy head with good retention and some lacing. Aroma of sweet Belgian malt with light caramel notes and some dry fruits clearly identifiable. Taste is also dominated by light sweet caramelized malt notes with some dry fruits notes easily noticeable. Body is about average for style with good carbonation and no apparent alcohol. Interesting but not necessarily something I would seek on a regular basis.

 455 characters

Photo of jaydoc
3.2/5  rDev -7.5%

Photo of WillAndSarah
2.75/5  rDev -20.5%

Photo of dsshuck
3.5/5  rDev +1.2%
look: 3.5 | smell: 3.5 | taste: 3.5 | feel: 3.5 | overall: 3.5

Photo of spinrsx
3.45/5  rDev -0.3%
look: 3.5 | smell: 3.5 | taste: 3.5 | feel: 3 | overall: 3.5

500ml Bottle from the Ottawa LCBO for $7 or so

Appearance - Reddish brown colour with an average size off-white coloured head. There is an average amount of carbonation showing and there is some good lacing. The head lasted for around 4-5 minutes before it was gone.

Smell - Caramel, malts, breads/grains, raisins, burnt sugar

Taste & Mouth - There is an average amount of carbonation and I can taste caramel, malts, and raisins. There is also some burnt sugary sweet notes, and a yeasty spiciness.

Overall - I'm on the fence with this one. Not good and not bad at the same time. It has an interesting mix of flavours but comes across as a home brew in some ways. Definitely not a repeat purchase - especially given the price - but not a complete waste.

 757 characters

Photo of RedAleMan
3.52/5  rDev +1.7%
look: 3.75 | smell: 3.5 | taste: 3.5 | feel: 3.5 | overall: 3.5

Photo of thehyperduck
3.67/5  rDev +6.1%
look: 4 | smell: 3.75 | taste: 3.5 | feel: 3.75 | overall: 3.75

500 mL bottle picked up at the LCBO; best before Feb 2015. Served slightly chilled.

This Belgian-style dark ale pours a brownish-copper hue; a little foggy, and topped with two fingers of fluffy, light beige-coloured froth. Retention is excellent; it takes well over five minutes for the head to seep away, leaving behind a more manageable 1 cm cap in its place. Very little lace, but otherwise this is a fine-looking brew. The aroma is very saccharine, which is not unusual for this style - dark toasted malts, molasses, fruitcake and baker's chocolate are all noticeable, with a fruity, raisiny sweetness dominating the bouquet. There are some nice spicy notes, too, with cinnamon and clove featuring most strongly.

Interesting flavour, but not particularly complex for this style of beer. The malts dominate, providing hints of caramelized sugar, plum pudding, toasted grains/bread and a distinctly raisin-like fruity sweetness. The finish is earthy and reminiscent of dark chocolate, with mild hints of cinnamon and nutmeg lingering briefly into the aftertaste, alongside the aforementioned earthy/chocolatey note. Medium-bodied, with somewhat assertive carbonation that gives this brew a lively, prickly feel on the palate. This is a tasty beer, for sure, but not an especially memorable one.

Final Grade: 3.67, a B grade. Renaissance's Age of Raisin makes for an intriguing glass, though I'd preface that by pointing out that as far as Belgian dark ales go, this is a fairly pedestrian example. Quite sweet, as one might expect from a dark ale brewed with raisins - but not at all cloying, with an earthy, bitter finale that rounds the profile out nicely. I don't think I'd buy this one again, but that has more to do with the price point than the quality. Worth a look if you're a Belgian beer fan looking for something a little different.

 1,849 characters

Photo of byronic
3.5/5  rDev +1.2%

Photo of Jotora
3.5/5  rDev +1.2%

Photo of taxandbeerguy
3.59/5  rDev +3.8%
look: 4 | smell: 3.75 | taste: 3.5 | feel: 3.5 | overall: 3.5

500 ml bottle served cold into a pint glass. Purchased this relative newcomer to Ontario markets at the LCBO for about $6 CDN.

Appearance - crazily carbonated, even. Minor pour yielded the biggest frothier head I've ever seen. Pouring beer should not be this much of a challenge. Dark brown in color with a reddish haze throughout. Certainly a good looking beer despite only good but not great retention.

Smell - candied sugar, lots of brown sugar and a bit of the funky Belgian yeast aroma. Pretty good and enriched aroma.

Taste - candied sugar, a hint of raisin, boozy flavor too. Moderately bitter finish, but this just doesn't quite have the cohesiveness of other beers in the style. Raisin shines through a bit more as it warms.

Mouthfeel - insane carbonation cuts to a moderate body and even keeled finish.

Overall - not a bad beer, but the raisin isn't really pronounced here and otherwise doesn't blow me away as something exciting and interesting for the style. Solid beer, but others are far more affordable.

 1,023 characters

Photo of polloenfuego
3.5/5  rDev +1.2%

Photo of ToddMopps
3.84/5  rDev +11%

Photo of andrenaline
3.5/5  rDev +1.2%

Photo of motabika
3.85/5  rDev +11.3%
look: 3.75 | smell: 3.75 | taste: 4 | feel: 3.75 | overall: 3.75

Interesting beer, Belgian style strong ale, but has the extra presence of the raisin flavour coming through.My first experience with this brewery, but look forward to trying there other releases. The kiwis really know how to produce good beer. Would buy again.

 260 characters

Photo of yancot
3.5/5  rDev +1.2%
look: 3.5 | smell: 3.5 | taste: 3.5 | feel: 3.5 | overall: 3.5

Photo of kwjd
3/5  rDev -13.3%

Photo of biegaman
3.59/5  rDev +3.8%
look: 3.25 | smell: 3.5 | taste: 3.75 | feel: 3.5 | overall: 3.5

This 'Enlightenment' offering rather needs light shed on it - literally, otherwise the ale that is in actuality clear and striking blood orange in colour appears distastefully murky and an off-coloured brown tone. The fact that it's hopelessly flat doesn't help things either. All in all, Age of Raisin looks much as one might expect a beverage fermented with raisins to look.

As advertised, there's a good amount of raisin flavour in the aroma. It is combined with brown sugar, cinnamon, and just a hint of chocolate - the mind turns immediately to dessert. While more than agreeable, it is undeniably lacking a certain something; authentic Belgian Dubbels make far more of an impression than this.

Dubbels can be naturally abundant in dried fruit flavour, so it's somewhat surprising that the addition of raisins hasn't resulted in overkill. It falls squarely on the sweet side, to be sure, but nothing cloying; there's enough maltiness (itself sweet, but not sugary) and earthy hops to temper it. Notions of port or prune juice would be way overblown.

Instead, Age of Raisin has more of a Christmas fruitcake-type profile: dried fruitiness abounds but is blended into a mix of spongy vanilla cake, a toffee glaze, and, courtesy of the yeast, a bakers rack of spices that include the usual suspects cinnamon, clove, and nutmeg. Far from bombastic, however, all these flavours are rather downplayed, a bit "watered-down" even.

In fairness, that also includes the alcohol. The presence of darker coloured grain and impressionable yeast conjures to mind low-alcohol Kvass - an understandable comparison given that both are fermented with raisins. Indeed, this should suit the Russian palate just fine. Belgian monks, on the other hand, they will surely find much to be desired...

Renaissance is one of the breweries to impress me most over the last year, but the two Enlightenment offerings I've tried (this and Great Punkin) have been relative let-downs considering how outstanding most of their other beers are.

 2,021 characters

Photo of bylerteck
2.75/5  rDev -20.5%

Photo of valianes
3.75/5  rDev +8.4%

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Enlightenment: The Age Of Raisin from Renaissance Brewing
Beer rating: 3.46 out of 5 with 28 ratings
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