Unibroue 16

Unibroue 16Unibroue 16
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Belgian Strong Pale Ale
4.09 | pDev: 9.05%
Quebec, Canada
Retired (no longer brewed)
Unibroue 16Unibroue 16
Reviews: 240 | Ratings: 282 | Log in to view all ratings and sort
Photo of detgfrsh
4.14/5  rDev +1.2%
look: 4 | smell: 4.25 | taste: 4.25 | feel: 3.75 | overall: 4

From a 750ml bottle dated December 2009. This has been aging for awhile! Pours a cloudy brown color with a finger of white foam. Smells of sugar, dark fruits, and yeast (not unlike a red wine). Mouthfeel is pretty light, a little syrupy but not much carbonation. Taste is a multi-layered blend of dark malts, yeast, and spices. The alcohol is mostly hidden except for a lingering warmth, surprising for a 10% beer.

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Photo of spinrsx
3.97/5  rDev -2.9%
look: 3.5 | smell: 4 | taste: 4 | feel: 4 | overall: 4

750ml Bottle - Thanks to Pushkinwow for sharing

Appearance - Hazy amber colour with a small size fizzy off white coloured head. There is a below average amount of carbonation and there isn't much lacing. The head was gone in a few minutes.

Smell - Malts, yeast, spices, dates/plums

Taste & Mouth - There is a below average amount of carbonation and I can taste malts, dates/plums/raisins, yeast and a mix of spices. It ends with a sugary sweet aftertaste and the alcohol seems almost non existent.

Overall - Another fantastic beer that drinks more like a quad/barley wine than a BSPA. The aging has does wonders for it and I'd love to be able to drink beers like this all the time.

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Photo of danedelman
4.32/5  rDev +5.6%
look: 4 | smell: 4.5 | taste: 4.5 | feel: 4 | overall: 4

just picked this bottle up thinking it was the newest one but wrong. Love Unibroue

A-dark amber with a tall fluffy white head

S-lots of brown sugar, molasses, candi sugar and dried fruit. Like a belgian dubbel. some cherry notes as well.

T-a dryer of what I smelled above. very mellow and smooth. one of the best inthis style I have had. Unibroue is always my favorite!!

M-little on the syrupy side but still wonderfull.

Will be searching out another bottle of this one!!

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Photo of LiquidAmber
4.47/5  rDev +9.3%
look: 4 | smell: 4.5 | taste: 4.5 | feel: 4.5 | overall: 4.5

Two year old bottle from store stock; unknown storage conditions. Poured into an Ommegang flute. Pours a clear red orange amber. Two finger medium active head and lacing. Nice fruit aroma of apples, plums, oranges, caramel malt, a hint of Belgian spices. Taste follows with nicely integrated light and dark fruit, caramel malt, light citrus and Belgian spicing. Medium, almost creamy body Unusually mellow and satisfying finish for Unibroue, which can have a bitter spicy finish. This is an excellent Belgian strong ale. I'd have categorized it as a dark strong ale, but whatever. Wish I had another! If it's like most Unibroues, this two year old bottle is at its prime and tastes like it.

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Photo of superspak
3.9/5  rDev -4.6%
look: 4 | smell: 4 | taste: 4 | feel: 4 | overall: 3.5

750 ml bottle into snifter, bottled December 2009. Pours hazy reddish orange color with a nice 2 finger light khaki head with great retention that reduces to a lacing cap. Some spotty lacing on the glass. Aromas of big caramel, candi sugar, plum, raisin, apricot, molasses, biscuit, apple, and yeast spices. Some nice and interesting aromas. Taste of caramel, plum, apple, molasses, gold raisin, candi sugar, biscuit, and spicy yeast. Lingering notes of caramel, dark fruit, molasses, and spices on the finish for a bit. Medium-high carbonation and medium-full bodied; with a fairly creamy and slick mouthfeel. Very smooth drinking for 10%; with only a slight warming on the finish noticed. Good balance of flavors and spiciness. Overall this is a very nice Belgian strong pale. Interesting mix of flavors that come together very well.

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Photo of ikantspel
4.01/5  rDev -2%
look: 5 | smell: 4 | taste: 4 | feel: 3.5 | overall: 4

date of december 2009 on bottle.

poured into a duvel tulip. beautiful cloudy amber color with a medium head that leaves a thin lacing.

nutty and coffee smell with some dark toasty maltiness.

tastes as good as it smells. alcohol is slightly present but not overpowering. almost tastes more like a quad than a BSPA.

go does pretty easy and the carbonation kinda settles after awhile

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Photo of drperm
4.08/5  rDev -0.2%
look: 4.5 | smell: 4 | taste: 4 | feel: 3.5 | overall: 4.5

2007 vintage. Purchased in 2008; opened 18/8/2011

In the glass, it displays a handsome dark cloudy apricot-copper colour. The foam is antique white, ample at first before settling down to a 2mm ring with largeish bubbles and nice lacing.

The aroma is predominately sweet: dessert-bread, raisins, apricots, clementines, caramel, rhubarb, and a faint hint of licorice. The ghost of a hop aroma lies buried in the midst of the fruit.

The taste is quite nice. The fruit-tart dessert trope remains, but a nice tart-bitter snap at the end ties it together. I can only imagine that three years ago this brew possessed more hop bitterness as well as more prominent alcohol heat. Even as time in the cellar has mellowed it out, the 10% ABV is still letting is presence be known.

The mouthfeel is slightly sweet and packs a punch; this will surely flex its muscles if you're not careful. The time in the cellar has not done harm to a wonderful scrubbing-bubbles carbonation.

Overall, this is an excellent cellarer and a noble brew. Fantastic on its own, if a bit daunting; it would also serve admirably as a champagne substitute, or with dessert -- either cream-and-fruit based, or cheeses.

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Photo of BeerNemesis
4.29/5  rDev +4.9%
look: 3.5 | smell: 4.5 | taste: 4.5 | feel: 4 | overall: 4

Unibroue 16 | 750 ml. | 10.0% ABV | 2009 vintage

Brewer: Unibroue
Style: Belgian Strong Pale Ale
Glass: chalice

Dull golden-orange with an frothy off-white head that settles down nicely into patches of foam.

Very fruity--plum, raisins, and spice.

The fruits burst through, more tropical than in the nose. The aftertaste is deeply alcoholic, sugary, and punchy.

Lathery foam and swirling carbonation make this as fun to swish as it is to taste.

Quite well balanced. I'm surprised how well the alcoholic flavor is integrated into the main taste of tropical fruits.

Would I get it again?:

Bottled: December 2009
Served: August 3, 2011

Price = $7.95 at The New Beer Distributors (NYC)

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Photo of kwjd
4.42/5  rDev +8.1%
look: 4 | smell: 4.5 | taste: 4.5 | feel: 4 | overall: 4.5

Bottle says December 2009, so I bought this pre-aged by over a year. Pours a bright orange colour with thick white head. Head dissipates fairly quickly, but there is lots of lacing on the glass. Smells of apples, caramel, brown sugar with some Belgian yeast. Nice sweet flavour, some bitterness is noticeable in the aftertaste. Very smooth mouthfeel. A really nice Belgian style ale, a steal at $9.

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Photo of justintcoons
3.57/5  rDev -12.7%
look: 3.5 | smell: 4 | taste: 4 | feel: 4 | overall: 2

Aged a little over a year. Vintage 2009.

A: Pours copper with orange highlights. One finger head that dissipates slowly with good lacing. Good amount of carbonation left.

N: Apples, caramel, honey, cocoa and maybe cinnamon?

T: Pink lady apple, generous amount of Belgian funk, plum, sour apple, honey, brown sugar, toffee, cough syrup and citrus. Earthy and grassy finish with a bouquet of spices (coriander, black pepper).

M: Creamy and semi-chewy.

D: Although a very complex beer it's rather pungent and the spicy finish is overpowering.

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Photo of breweryaprntc13
4.37/5  rDev +6.8%
look: 4 | smell: 4.5 | taste: 4.5 | feel: 4.5 | overall: 4

Muddy amber/brown, slight gold hue under a one finger solid white head slow to dissolve leaving very thick lace.

Piney and citrus hops lead, toffee malts, earthy and grassy hops, hints of dark fruits, slight ester.

Tart, pine and citrus lead. sour finish. belgian yeast, dark fruits, slight clove, earthy bitter undertones.

Medium carbonation, smooth body,

Solid beer, not awe inspiring but impressive and above average.

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Photo of Chaney
2.91/5  rDev -28.9%
look: 4 | smell: 3 | taste: 3 | feel: 2.5 | overall: 2.5

Special thanks to ahalloin for bringing this retired brew to a tasting.

A: Mildly cloudy, golden color, with about a 1-2 finger head that stayed fairly present throughout the session. The carbonation was substantial.

S: Mildly metallic, with tons of "moderately" dark fruit notes (eg. plums) , and with a decent scent of fresh filtered water. Boozy? Hell yeah!

T: On the taste, there wasn't much fresh about it. Not only did I get more metal, but I would even go as far as calling it "rust-like"... about like drinking previously frozen water off a lamp post. As I got into the session, this undesirable quality decreased. Pilsner-esque, with a bit of plum and mango notes.

M: Carbonation has never been an issue with Unibroue .... in this category, this fine brewery is about as good as it gets! Thick enough for this style, but the overpowering booze killed the day and then some. This was probably due to age.

D: I had a discussion with another BA at the session about describing something as oxidized vs. metallic in terms of taste. I often use the term metallic interchangeably and perhaps I shouldn't. Nevertheless, this one was past its prime.

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Photo of Arbitrator
3.53/5  rDev -13.7%
look: 4 | smell: 3.5 | taste: 3.5 | feel: 3.5 | overall: 3.5

Chilled 750mL into a glass. Re-review.

A: Pours a dark amber orange with huge fluffy head. Good retention, with good lacing.

S: Banana, orange rind, peppers and cloves, and caramel. This is well oxidized at this point; the aroma gives off aromas of candi sugar with a strong sherry note. Mild cardboard / paper to it. I still find it pleasant on the whole, but I have a feeling its best days are behind it.

T: Follows the nose pretty well. A light backbone of toast, banana, and clove gives it a weizen-like impression at first, but it develops into a larger profile of orange rind, apples, pears, and earthy yeast. There is a general sweetness that almost covers the clove in the finish; at times I liken it to candi sugar and at other times to honey, but I'm convinced in the end that this is the oxidation at work, as it is often sherry-like. Some cardboard in the aftertaste, though nothing too bad.

M: Medium bodied, with slightly high carbonation. But it's not overcarbonated like I find most Unibroue offerings to be. I'm guessing the age has tempered it a bit. Has a sweet finish.

D: Fairly drinkable. I'm generally not impressed with Unibroue's BSPAs, but this one was pretty good. I think I held it a bit past its peak, but it wasn't bad.

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Photo of womencantsail
3.31/5  rDev -19.1%
look: 4 | smell: 3 | taste: 3.5 | feel: 3.5 | overall: 3

A: The pour is an orange-amber color with a thin layer of off-white foam.

S: Definitely a lot of oxidation happening here. Stale sugar, particularly brown sugar, with some cardboard. A fairly potent orange peel note, which is actually nice.

T: This is intensely sweet, but I suppose it works out alright. Lots of fruit character such as oranges, pears, apples, maybe strawberries. Some caramel, too, just for good measure. It's still quite oxidized, despite what good flavors that are there.

M: The body is medium with a moderate carbonation.

D: Despite the flaws, this one wasn't horrendous. Some decent points to it, which was pleasant in what was a lackluster lineup overall.

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Photo of Mora2000
4/5  rDev -2.2%
look: 4 | smell: 4 | taste: 4 | feel: 4 | overall: 4

The beer pours a hazy brown-orange color with an off-white head. The aroma is heavy on the caramel malt and green apples. I also get a little bit of yeast mixed in.

The flavor is a mix of toffee, green apples, candy and brown sugar, alcohol and yeast. The flavor is very nice and is well balanced between the malt and fruit flavors.

Medium mouthfeel and medium carbonation.

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Photo of BeerAdvocate
4/5  rDev -2.2%
look: 4 | smell: 4 | taste: 4 | feel: 4 | overall: 4

Review from BeerAdvocate Magazine June 2007.

Brewed to celebrate 16 years--what about celebrating the survival of two buyouts?

Hazy and tawny, with a bubbly effervescence that holds together in a thick lather of foam. Big bready yeast aroma, hints of ripe plum and raisins, and a spicy backing in the nose. Semi-crisp; a creamy medium body. Extra-spicy, with a fresh yeast tone throughout. In the aroma and flavor are suggestions of cotton candy, bubble gum, rosewater and a faint taste of berry. Creamy malt character. There's a sweetness to start and a biscuity flavor from middle to end. Hops are minimal, allowing the spicy phenols to push for balance. Fruity, with warming esters. Faint suggestion of clove and cinnamon, black pepper and lemon rind. A bready maltiness comes though as the beer warms up a bit. Finishes with a thick, spicy malt flavor.

A big, bold Belgian-inspired Ale, with more balance compared to previous years' offerings--certainly more palatable. By far, this is Unibroue's best an- niversary beer to date. Pair this with a wedge of Humboldt Fog cheese and water crackers.

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Photo of charliedvrs
4.25/5  rDev +3.9%
look: 4 | smell: 4 | taste: 4.5 | feel: 4.5 | overall: 4

Served from the 750ml corked and caged bottle at Novare Res, first beer of a great afternoon!

A - Pours a hazy gold, with a bit of yeasty sediment left at the bottom of the bottle. Two to three fingers of thick white head rise to the top of the glass, providing a good amount of lace.

S - Sweet light fruits. Peaches, pears, pineapple. The yeast is delicate and the malts give a pleasant bready that is secondary to the fruit aromas.

T - Taste follows the nose but also has a spice, pepper taste as you move towards the bottom of the bottle. It's subtle, and still only lingers in the background compared to the sweeter fruits. There's a distinct honey flavor as well. It almost reminds me of a Saison.

M - Lots of carbonation from this four year old beer, giving it a refreshing quaility I wish I could compare to a bottle when it first came out.

D - The alcohol content is practically indetectable. It goes down easy and has so many interesting little complexities that spring up throughout the entire bottle. This is one to seek out.

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Photo of drpimento
4.23/5  rDev +3.4%
look: 4 | smell: 3.5 | taste: 4.5 | feel: 4.5 | overall: 4.5

This has been in a box in the dark at room temp for some years so I was worried that it might have taken a hit. But, happily for me, it just got better! Poured a big, sudsy, foamy, frothy, light tan head that settled out after a bit and a little lace. Color is a lovely clear, medium amber. Aroma is big bread yeast, malt, a little metalic, and malt. Flavor is like aroma minus the metalic and plus a little fruitiness and malt sweetness, but cut with the carbonic acid and the bitterness of yeast and hop. Body is excellent - mouth filling and the bubbles are just right for the malt et al. Finish is like flavor and slowly fades in a medium long period. Very well rounded beer and easy drinking.

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Photo of Bonis
4.4/5  rDev +7.6%
look: 4 | smell: 4 | taste: 4.5 | feel: 4 | overall: 5

Appearance - Pours a cloudy orange/amber color with a huge head that lingers for a while and settles to about a half finger throughout the duration.

Nose - Light colored fruits and belgian yeasts. No alcohol present. Sweet like a wine or hard cider and slightly earthy.

Taste - This is without a doubt one of the most amazing brews I have ever tasted. Big belgian yeast and fruit flavors. I am getting primarily green apples, as well as some hints of pear. Similar to the smell in that I taste NO ALCOHOL, which is amazing for a 10% abv brew! The spicy clove flavor is there like in other Unibroue offerings, but not nearly as intense. Not nearly as complex as I expected, but this one is simply delicious.

Mouthfeel - This one has a bunch of carbonation for being aged so long, but I'm not going to lie.. It did not negatively impact the beer in any way. It almost gave the beer a champagne-esque feeling in the mouth.

Drinkability - Split this bomber with a friend, but boy, I really wish I had the other half! This is beyond drinkable for a 10% beer. If you can find this one, buy it NOW! This was brewed about 4 and a half years ago and I'm guessing there aren't many left out there. Had this one over 8 months past the drink by date, but it seemed perfectly delicious to me. What can I say, it aged well.

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Photo of brystmar
4.07/5  rDev -0.5%
look: 4 | smell: 4.5 | taste: 4 | feel: 3.5 | overall: 4

Bomber into a Unibroue tulip at the Freakin Frog in Vegas.

A: hazy brown-red with two fingers of white head. Minimal lace.

S: malt, malt, and more malt! Fruit and cloves too.

T: malty and spicy with fruit throughout. Finishes dry and smooth with a hint of boozy warmth. Delicious!

M&D: really stings the tongue with carbonation right off the bat. Turns more subtle as it sits and thickens. Easy to drink and really well balanced overall. Enjoyable!

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Photo of Boto
4.47/5  rDev +9.3%
look: 4 | smell: 4.5 | taste: 4.5 | feel: 4.5 | overall: 4.5

750 ml bottle: The cork comes out of this one with a loud "pop". This one pours a cloudy/opaque orangish color. There is a fairly substantial off-white head that lingers and leaves quite a bit of lacing. The aroma is very nice. Bready and yeasty, with lots of fruits. Pineapple, citrus and some faint spices. Good body to this one. Flavors are mixed. Bready, yeasty, pineapple, citrus, a faint spiciness. Just a bit sweet with some dryness to the finish. this was an excellent beer!

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Photo of sweemzander
4/5  rDev -2.2%
look: 4 | smell: 4 | taste: 4 | feel: 4 | overall: 4

750mL corked bottle poured into a tulip. Says December 2009 on the bottle. . . I think thats the best by date?

(A)- Pours a very cloudy; almost murky orange amber color that produced a massive yet lovely frothy white head with some good staying power.

(S)- Very citrus-like with peach, mango, pineapple, & just a bit of lime. Very tropical in the fruits department. Has just a minimal note of spiciness & clay.

(T)- Pretty much just like the smell. Its primarily a caramelized tropical fruit base. Has just a tiny bit of clay & finishes in a slightly dry bitterness that turns a tad funky from age.

(M)- A good carbonation level. Very smooth & balanced actually. Still has some good & unique flavors and power behind it. Thankfully this was stored well, because I had my doubts about if this was still good or not, but my gamble has paid off!

(D)- Aged beers always fascinate me because of how it can change over time & morph into something different & unique, yet special at the same time. This one certainly changed into a big tropical fruit bomb of a beer that I am really enjoying right now. This bottle will be gone very soon for sure. If you can acquire this right now I would suggest giving it a try if you know it was stored well.

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Photo of jbonapar
4.22/5  rDev +3.2%
look: 4 | smell: 4.5 | taste: 4.5 | feel: 4 | overall: 3.5

Pear is right! I purchaed this beer, and didnt thing I'd drink it for a few years but decided too finally open it...

Smell: Pears...Sweet sweet pears....
Taste: Interestingly, at first I didnt pour the trub(or bottom of the bottle) into my glass...me and a friend tried and noted strong pear and apply sweetness....no bitterness...then, we shook the bottle and poured it it...Amazing, it added so much complexity. The apple and pear where still there but it melded with aspicey bitterness...this beer was complete...amazing...started sweet with apple and pear..then, developed into a bitterness that quickly turned into a spicy comfort...Such an amazing beer...i wish I had another, doing 1 review doesnt do it justice....

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Photo of BeerFMAndy
3.72/5  rDev -9%
look: 3 | smell: 3.5 | taste: 4 | feel: 4 | overall: 3.5

750 ml bottle poured into a Unibroue tulip. B20070928Q on the bottle, 10% ABV, December 2009.

A - The color is a totally hazed golden apricot amber with a tall head from a moderately harsh pour. The head sank slowly but didn't leave much lace behind. A dense cream-colored dollop much like whipped topping.

S - Interesting yeast aroma off the bat. Hints of mild spices with an interesting fruit mixture. A touch of apricot with light pineapple and mango. Lightly earthy wood on the finish. Pilsner malts and a small drizzle of caramel. Peculiar hops too. All very odd smelling.

T - Bold pilsner and caramel malts give a burst of sweetness right away followed by the blast of fruitiness. Mango and light apricot with a faint pineapple citrus drop. Yeast is all over too. A black pepper-like spice finish with a little clove maybe? Very complex and all over the place.

M - Medium-bodied and smooth, the carbonation popped the cork pretty harshly and it tingles in the mouth joyously. The finish is whats a bit different to me. A combination of spice, sweet fruit, mild tartness, and a low hoppy bitterness.

D - By the end of the 750 I wont want any more. It's somewhat overpowering in all the categories. A bit odd in a way too. One of Unibroue's more unique beers.

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Photo of cosmicevan
4.28/5  rDev +4.6%
look: 5 | smell: 4.5 | taste: 4.5 | feel: 4 | overall: 3.5

Found one of these a little while ago at New Beer in NYC. Guess there are some advantages of having some old stock?

Poured from 750mL bomber into Unibroue tulip.

A - Poured a murky/cloudy orange with champagne-like bubbles dancing from the bottom of the glass (so cloudy that I was only able to see the lively carbonation by holding it to the light. Frothy yeasty generous head with lacing that really clinged to the glass. This beer looks beautiful.

S - Apple, fruitpunch, berries, candied sugar with a touch of grape. As it warms, the alcohol comes out a bit more.

T - Taste is much more dark fruit and spicey than the smell suggests. Alcohol is very upfront. I'm a big fan of Unibroue and their beers all carry a few similar characteristics in the flavor dept, so I really enjoyed this one. I wish I could have tried it a year ago to compare.

M - Lively carbonation. Has a wonderfully sweet tingly spicey aftertaste.

D - Alcohol content is a bit too much. This is a great brew to try, but not really one to have a few of.

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Unibroue 16 from Unibroue
Beer rating: 90 out of 100 with 282 ratings