17 Grande Réserve
Unibroue

17 Grande Réserve17 Grande Réserve
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From:
Unibroue
 
Quebec, Canada
Style:
Strong Ale - Belgian Dark
ABV:
10%
Score:
94
Avg:
4.23 | pDev: 10.64%
Ratings:
1,182
Status:
Retired
Rated:
Apr 26, 2022
Added:
Dec 30, 2011
Wants:
  120
Gots:
  365
SCORE
94
Outstanding
17 Grande Réserve17 Grande Réserve
Notes: This French oak aged, bottle refermented dark ale has a remarkable and complex flavor profile. Its Grande Réserve appellation is a fitting endorsement of its exceptional aging qualities.
Recent ratings and reviews. | Log in to view more ratings + sorting options.
 
4.25 by TLA from Pennsylvania on Apr 26, 2022
 
3.8 by TMoney2591 from Illinois on Jan 25, 2022
Photo of Mavigo
4.4/5  rDev +4%
look: 4.25 | smell: 4.25 | taste: 4.5 | feel: 4.25 | overall: 4.5
by Mavigo from Michigan

Got this in a 750ml bomber bottle from a local shop in Grand Rapids. Served in a goblet. 2016 is the expiration date, it’s about to be 2022. I’ve got high hopes for this one.
A: Pours a very dark brown color, opaque, thin off white/cream head with a thin ring of lacing.
S: What a heavy smell. Prunes, raisins, black cherries, darkened fruits, malts, brown sugar, woodiness, booziness, spices, peppers.
T: Booze, syrup, prunes, raisins, craisins, black cherries, malts, dark chocolate,
M: Mild carbonation and a heavy mouthfeel, it’s deep like you’d expect it. Really heavy, like drinking a box of liquid chocolate donuts.
O: Deap and complex like you would expect from a bet like this from a brewery like this. The bottle is aged 5 years, adds to the richness. Recommend it.

Jan 01, 2022
 
4.15 by Burg from New Hampshire on May 05, 2021
Photo of milkshakebeersucks
4.4/5  rDev +4%
look: 3.75 | smell: 4.25 | taste: 4.5 | feel: 4.5 | overall: 4.5
by milkshakebeersucks from Maryland

2015 vintage. Great Xmas gift; thanks, Mike!

Cloudy, copper appearance with a small, off white head and sparse lacing. Yeasty aroma along with some spiciness, a touch of vanilla and toffee. Earthy, slightly sweet, roasted malt taste with spices, dark fruit, leather and tobacco popping up. Alcohol is upfront and lingers well into the aftertaste. Full bodied, moderately carbonated mouthfeel with a long lasting finish.

Jan 02, 2021
Photo of eberesford
4.21/5  rDev -0.5%
look: 4.5 | smell: 4 | taste: 4.25 | feel: 4.25 | overall: 4.25
by eberesford from Canada (ON)

I confess this has been in store for a few years and I was wondering how it would taste or whether it would have lasted. It was magnificent. Deep ruddy brown with a generous creamy colourd head. Complex in both aroma and flavour with notes of caramel, mocha, coffee, raisins, dates, prunes. The aroma was slightly attenuated on what I expected, but the flavour full. The body was full but not overehelming as it might have been at this ABV, and complexity.

Oct 31, 2020
 
4.35 by Insomniac from Canada (ON) on Aug 13, 2020
Photo of pathman
4.5/5  rDev +6.4%
look: 4.5 | smell: 4.5 | taste: 4.5 | feel: 4.5 | overall: 4.5
by pathman from Ohio

05/04/20 bottle @ home (bottled in 2011)

May 04, 2020
Photo of firemedic1343
5/5  rDev +18.2%
look: 5 | smell: 5 | taste: 5 | feel: 5 | overall: 5
by firemedic1343 from Florida

I hate the regular version of this. This 17 is so much better. It’s one of the best! Very creamy.

Mar 18, 2020
 
4.23 by robotic_being from Florida on Mar 01, 2020
 
4.58 by Quadman from Ohio on Jan 28, 2020
Photo of GaryStewart
5/5  rDev +18.2%
look: 5 | smell: 5 | taste: 5 | feel: 5 | overall: 5
by GaryStewart

Opened a 2011 bottle tonight I have been saving. Overall, the best beer I have ever had. Tastes like a brandywine I made called Novacaine. Smooth, crisp, pungent and no bitter aftertaste. Smooth, limited head. The smell is more of a light perfume quality rather than a strong alcohol despite 10% ABV. I really liked this beer a lot. Excellent.

Jan 27, 2020
Photo of TooManyGlasses
4.3/5  rDev +1.7%
look: 4 | smell: 4.5 | taste: 4.25 | feel: 4.25 | overall: 4.25
by TooManyGlasses from Canada (AB)

Christmas dinner 2019 - 2017 Vintage.
Pours a slightly murky yet somehow bright tawny amber to brown with finger of khaki head.
Aromas of caramel malt, toffee, brown sugar, and date. Notes of oak, leather.
Caramel, toffee notes on the palate with date, raisin, raisin bread, Belgian yeast, and just a touch of licorice.. Boozy but not sharply so.
Medium full mouthfeel - sweetness dominates with brisk carbonation and a smooth warming boozy finish.

Dec 25, 2019
Photo of Bouleboubier
3.9/5  rDev -7.8%
look: 4 | smell: 4 | taste: 3.75 | feel: 4.5 | overall: 3.75
by Bouleboubier from New Jersey

(750 ml bottle, 2013 vintage; purchased 2 years ago in vertical pack 2013-15, kept on its side in 55 F fridge... split between two tulip glasses... review embellished upon from notes taken 2 days ago)

Reddish-brown liquid, mostly clear; huge build of silky dense foam, capped with dimpled crest.... immediate on nose: leather, prune, grape fruit rollup; then some black licorice and clove spice as the foam falls... on the palate: much drier than the aromas suggest, relatively vinous; subtly rich med-dark malt and caramel; mellow boozy flare in the finish; just dying/mute, far beyond its prime... subtly suede softness to its light-medium body; remarkable how little alcohol heat/warmth shows; could honestly chug it, so light and smooth...

First few sips reminded me of the Gouden Carolus Noel I'd had a few times recently, but this didn't have the same lasting flavor intensity... wondering if the 2013 is just a bit to dried out and dead at this point... not a bad beer, but its flavor expressions faded rather too quick... the 2014 and '15 still have yet to be uncorked, however... I do recall having a current vintage and it being much more vibrant - will update (1607)

Nov 16, 2019
Photo of RobertFCda
4.85/5  rDev +14.7%
look: 4.75 | smell: 4.75 | taste: 5 | feel: 4.75 | overall: 4.75
by RobertFCda from Canada (ON)

The above numbers are for the 2016. The 2017 would rate somewhat lower.

Recently opened a bottle of the 2016. Compared to when it was first released, it is now a more mature, refined drink.

It poured a deep brown. Clear, with a thick slightly amber, finely laced head. The taste was rich malt with notes of maraschino cherry and black licorice (anise). In the mouth it was thick, coating the palate and with a long finish. Personally, I think it benefitted from cellaring.

The 2017, by comparison, was rougher and less refined. Not really much different from first release. It poured the same colour as the 2016, but was cloudy in the glass. The head was basically the same. Taste was malty, but more watered down than the 2016. There was not the same complexity of flavour, with really no other subtleties. In the mouth it was ver similar to the 2016, but not as pleasant due to the less complex flavour profile.

Jun 03, 2019
 
4.09 by HopsAreDaMan from Missouri on Apr 06, 2019
 
4 by Supergenou from Canada (QC) on Mar 23, 2019
 
4.25 by ian_graf from Minnesota on Feb 10, 2019
Photo of BucBasil
4.35/5  rDev +2.8%
look: 4.5 | smell: 4.5 | taste: 4.25 | feel: 4 | overall: 4.5
by BucBasil from Rwanda

A: Poured from the 750mL bottle into a tulip glass. The beer is a cola red color, very dark, with a frothy, creamy tan head that is super thick and sticks around a while.

S: Dark fruit and caramel with brown sugar note. Cherry and a sort of syrupy sweetness. Light spiciness and a roasted/toasted woody note. Complex aroma but not too overpowering. Really nice smell.

T: Cherries and a sweet candy note. Yeast and a roasted malt note. An almost medicinal but not - more like the sweetness in kids medicine that is not unpleasant. Spiced rum and dark fruit really strong in the middle. Alcohol evident but not overpowering. Spices and brown sugar round things out. This is a pretty good one, but can get slightly cloying.

F: A nice creamy feel with light carbonation. Fills the mouth.

Overall: This is a great beer from a great brewery. Really hits the style here, matching some of the true Belgians that are out there. Recommended. I would love to see this with more age on it.

Feb 09, 2019
Photo of cardfan212
4.05/5  rDev -4.3%
look: 4.5 | smell: 3.75 | taste: 4.25 | feel: 3.75 | overall: 4
by cardfan212 from Minnesota

Poured from a 2016 750 mL bottle into a goblet.

Look - Pours an opaque chocolatey brown with a thick fluffy sandy tan head, almost like a meringue.

Smell - Light floral and earthy notes with some underlying estery sweetness. Surprisingly mild on the nose for its staunch appearance.

Taste - Lots of sweetness, from chocolatey to bready to a slightly marshmallow type taste. Turns over into a smokey wisp with a slight bit of peppery alcohol bite. Simple yet complex at the same time.

Feel - Medium body with a fairly lively carbonation. Slightly too perky for me, but it's fine.

Overall - A fairly good yet understated Belgian ale. I'd rather have a mild and understated beer than something far overblown though.

Feb 02, 2019
 
4.24 by rale from France on Jan 20, 2019
Photo of quadmad
4.23/5  rDev 0%
look: 4.5 | smell: 4.5 | taste: 4 | feel: 4.25 | overall: 4.25
by quadmad from Canada (ON)

Bomber from August 2016 (28 months). $11.00 From the LCBO. Served in a Chimay chalice. Decent head; lacing solid on the glass. While waiting for it to warm I could smell the aroma from three feet away. Taste was a little harsh. Another solid BSDA from Unibroue.

Dec 13, 2018
Photo of Beersnake1
4.02/5  rDev -5%
look: 4.25 | smell: 4 | taste: 4 | feel: 4 | overall: 4
by Beersnake1 from California

2011 bottle cracked in 2018. The cork was almost impossible to get out, but I was eventually successful. Poured from fridge temp, but allowed to warm. Pours a dark brown color with tan head. Nose is dark fruit, toffee, candy, and a touch of metallic notes. Definitely some Belgian yeast in there as well. Taste is very much downhill from when it was fresh. I waited too long. That said, it still has some nice yeast, dark fruit (cherries especially), and nutty notes. Some oak and toffee, as well as some tree sap are there. Mouthfeel is medium bodied. Overall, this was really good but should be consumed within 5 years.

Dec 13, 2018
Photo of ChicagoJ
4.79/5  rDev +13.2%
look: 4.75 | smell: 4.5 | taste: 5 | feel: 4.75 | overall: 4.75
by ChicagoJ from Illinois

12/1/18 (Chicago): Bottle purchased in 2013, best before 2/28/18 on bottle, poured into Chimay chalice. Dark ruby pour, generous puffy off-white head leaves generous lacing as it slowly dissipates. Very nice sweet aroma, spices and fruits. This beer aged very well. Roasted malt, raisins, figs, cherry taste. The whole fruit basket, very well blended, slighly spices offsets well. Extremely mellow and smooth creamy mouth feel, carbonation holds well. Excellent beer, one of my all time favorites, well done once again Unibroue!!!

Dec 01, 2018
 
4.24 by starclimber from Canada (BC) on Nov 14, 2018
 
4.24 by Bman6266 from Oklahoma on Oct 06, 2018
 
4.54 by gbiello from Massachusetts on Sep 26, 2018
 
4.3 by Agent-86 from Canada (ON) on Jul 14, 2018
Photo of EMV
4.5/5  rDev +6.4%
look: 4.5 | smell: 4.5 | taste: 4.5 | feel: 4.5 | overall: 4.5
by EMV from Pennsylvania

Poured from a cork'n'cage bomber into a Dogfish Head tulip

L: Nearly clear dark, dark mahogany brown pour. Light ruby red around the edges. Massive creamy off-white head leaves fantastic lacing.

S: Dark fruits and Belgian candi sugar. Sweet and spicy.

T/F: Toasted malts, Belgian sugars, and molasses. Light cherry, plum, fig, and raisin. Mild spice... with a bit of clove and nutmeg. Mild hopping for balance. Medium bodied and smooth creamy carbonation. More of the above at the finish.

O: An outstanding Belgian Strong Dark. Outstanding flavor and complexity... probably the best beer I've had from Unibroue, which is an excellent brewery.

Jul 08, 2018
 
4.08 by BHapeman from Virginia on Jun 16, 2018
 
4.25 by paulish from New York on May 20, 2018
 
4.63 by knowyourown from Canada (ON) on Feb 27, 2018
 
4.11 by jhodgert from Canada (QC) on Feb 14, 2018
Photo of Thomas_Wikman
4.18/5  rDev -1.2%
look: 4 | smell: 4 | taste: 4.25 | feel: 4.25 | overall: 4.25
by Thomas_Wikman from Texas

I had Grande Reserve 17 a while ago but I am writing from notes that I took. I thought this was a great beer.

Look: dark brown with a thick tan head

Aroma: Sweet dark bread, chocolate, dark fruits

Taste: Sweet dark bread, chocolate, some coffee, and dark fruits, some bitterness and hints of oak, it's a very nice blend of flavors

Feel: medium to full body.

Jan 03, 2018
Photo of TreyIsWilson
4.07/5  rDev -3.8%
look: 4.25 | smell: 4 | taste: 4 | feel: 4 | overall: 4.25
by TreyIsWilson from Michigan

A - Pours dark brown with a large foamy light tan head. Nice amount of soapy lacing.

S - Aroma is Belgian yeast, raisins and molasses.

T - The taste is raisins, plums, molasses, caramel, chocolate, dark bread and light vanilla.

M - Medium body with medium carbonation. Creamy mouth fell with a soft crisp finish.

O - A very nice Belgian dark ale. The layers of flavor are very inviting and the ABV is nicely hidden.

Dec 23, 2017
Photo of LifesAnesthesia
4.76/5  rDev +12.5%
look: 4.75 | smell: 4.25 | taste: 5 | feel: 4.5 | overall: 5
by LifesAnesthesia from Virginia

Bottled in 2014:
L - Deep opaque brown with a medium tan head that sticks around and leaves some lacing behind. The head is very smooth in appearance almost similar to Guinness.
S - Pretty complex. Sweet yeasty, bready malt, notes of caramel, vanilla, chocolate, dark dried fruits. Notes of oak definitely shine through.
T - Follows the nose and is very complex. Sweet yeasty, bready malt up front followed by notes of caramel and chocolate - the vanilla, dried fruits, and oak really intermingle well with everything. Maybe even some notes of rum. I can't really say any flavor comes on more on the back end or the front - everything is mixed in so effortlessly together.
F - medium to full bodied with a medium amount of carbonation. Very smooth and somewhat thick feeling.
O - This is an amazing Belgian ale. It's incredibly complex and rewarding. The notes of yeasty, bready malt intermixed with vanilla, dried fruits, oak, chocolate, caramel, and everything else I've yet to notice come together so well. This is a must try. Fantastic.

Dec 14, 2017
 
4.18 by shelby415 from Oregon on Dec 02, 2017
Photo of bigdeuce
4.23/5  rDev 0%
look: 4.75 | smell: 3.5 | taste: 4.5 | feel: 4.5 | overall: 4.25
by bigdeuce from Pennsylvania

Jesus is this beer complex. Dark, dark, dark. Light tan head that rivals Duval’s. Lacing everywhere. Scents of roasted duck with an okyness and much pluminess. Tasted like oaked cherries and cranberries. Slight apricot with a bit of tartness which is wiped away by the oak. Perfectly balanced. No alcoholic taste but be careful. Two of these may put one on his/her couch in 2 hours. Great beer!

Dec 01, 2017
 
3.17 by gabrielcolom from New York on Nov 28, 2017
 
4.21 by RichieRich1812 from Pennsylvania on Nov 01, 2017
17 Grande Réserve from Unibroue
Beer rating: 94 out of 100 with 1182 ratings