St. Bernardus Extra 4 Belgian Abbey Ale | Brouwerij St. Bernardus NV

very good
358 Ratings
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St. Bernardus Extra 4 Belgian Abbey AleSt. Bernardus Extra 4 Belgian Abbey Ale

Brewed by:
Brouwerij St. Bernardus NV

Style: Belgian Pale Ale

Alcohol by volume (ABV): 4.80%

Availability: Rotating

Notes / Commercial Description:
No notes at this time.

Added by dwagner003 on 02-05-2014

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Ratings: 358 |  Reviews: 79
Photo of atrocity
3/5  rDev -24.8%
look: 3 | smell: 3 | taste: 3 | feel: 3 | overall: 3

Photo of Uconnelmo
4/5  rDev +0.3%
look: 4 | smell: 4 | taste: 4 | feel: 4 | overall: 4

Photo of DamienI
3/5  rDev -24.8%
look: 3 | smell: 3 | taste: 3 | feel: 3 | overall: 3

Photo of captaincoffee
4.07/5  rDev +2%
look: 4.25 | smell: 4 | taste: 4 | feel: 4 | overall: 4.25

Pours very pale and a little hazy, with a large white head that has great staying power for a 4.8% beer and leaves good lacing. Nose is light esters, citrus, and a refreshing light yeast note that makes me think this is a wit and reminds me of Hoegaarden. Flavor is crisp and light, a bit of grain and citrus, but has a well rounded character that is hard to find at this ABV. Crisp light mouthfeel. Overall, a very solid beer when available.

 446 characters

Photo of Hunter
2.96/5  rDev -25.8%
look: 3 | smell: 3.25 | taste: 2.75 | feel: 3 | overall: 3

Look - hazy golden ale, some flotsam in the glass. Thin head of white, dissipates quickly, tracing appears afterwards
Smell - berry fruit jam, maple, yeasts
Taste - strangely empty, but notes of hay, light fruit sugars - berry gives way to dried apricot
Feel - dry, clean
Overall - light and refreshing, but not memorable. A good ale, worth trying but not repeating.

 367 characters

Photo of paulish
4/5  rDev +0.3%
look: 4 | smell: 4 | taste: 4 | feel: 4 | overall: 4

Photo of woodychandler
3.82/5  rDev -4.3%
look: 4.25 | smell: 4 | taste: 3.75 | feel: 3.5 | overall: 3.75

As I remarked in the New Beer Sunday (Week 633) thread, today is New Odds & Sods Sunday here at Chez Woody. I am using The Who's 1974 album as the soundtrack & I am simply winnowing down some unrelated oddballs as a part of the Eradication of the Bottle Backlog here at Chez Woody. No rhyme, no reason, just bottles.

I really dig the father on the labels with his bald pate, rosy cheeks, upraised R index finger & full goblet in his L hand. I have recreated that pose many times for photos as Bro. Woody with The Order of Disorder.

I Pop!ped the cap & began a very gentle pour as befits a beer of this caliber. Once sufficiently decanted, I gave it a vigorous in-glass swirl to raise two fingers of foamy, fizzy, bone-white head that quickly fell away to wisps. Color was Yellow-Gold (SRM = 4 - 5) with NE-quality clarity, leading to a visit from The Gelt Gang of Croesus, Mammon & Midas, all clamoring for a taste until I pointed out that it is Sunday at Abbaye de Chandler & they must be respectful or be asked to leave. They immediately settled down & so we passed the communal chalice to everyone's delight. Nose had a most pleasant honey-bready aspect. Mmm. Mouthfeel was medium, which was surprising, given its status as a simple Patersbier/Table Beer. The taste was not as sweet as the nose had led me to expect. Instead, there was a grassy, hay-like sharpness to accompany the honey, bready sweetness. It was entirely reminiscent of youthful summers spent at my maternal grandparents' house, in close proximity to working farms. Finish was semi-dry & refreshing, but I was not finding it as sustaining as my brethren might. I need something stronger, dig? I can't just be chipping when I am jonesing, y'know? Onward!

 1,728 characters

Photo of yaron73
4.31/5  rDev +8%
look: 4.25 | smell: 4.5 | taste: 4.25 | feel: 4.25 | overall: 4.25

Photo of joaopmgoncalves
3.8/5  rDev -4.8%
look: 4 | smell: 4 | taste: 3.75 | feel: 3.5 | overall: 3.75

Poured to a Duvel glass.

A: The body is yellow light, having a one finger thick white head.
S: The aroma has a strong belgian yeast profile with a malty backbone.
T: The taste is regular of a BPA but less prominent, having a belgian yeast profile that uses some acidity to connect with the bitterness of the small amount of hops used. The sweetness of the malts is also present at the beginning.
M: Body is medium to medium low. Carbonation is mild. Bitterness is mild, acidity is low. The density here is too low.
O: Was expecting more from St. Bernardus. For a BPA, the density should be higher. The flavor should also be more expressive.

 642 characters

Photo of mattboyer182
3.77/5  rDev -5.5%
look: 3.5 | smell: 4 | taste: 3.75 | feel: 3.5 | overall: 3.75

Photo of mynie
4.38/5  rDev +9.8%
look: 4.25 | smell: 4.25 | taste: 4.5 | feel: 4.5 | overall: 4.25

Never had this one before. Don't ever recall even seeing it. I remember once, many years ago, talking to a man at John's Grocery who said there just weren't no market for low-ABV Belgians, otherwise there were lots of beers he'd love to stock. Good to see such prejudices coming to an end (or, rather, the price of local beer has grown so porngraphically that it's now economically justifiable for American beersmen to spend 4 buck for 12 ounces of a lower ABV import).

I think I seen on a documentary once that the monks drink this sort of table beer out of bowls. I ain't gonna do that.

So I pour it into a tulip glass. It's dark yellow and fairly translucent but with a good amount of yeast particulate floating around. Nice, rocky white head.

Smells... god this is gonna sound lame, but it smells like a very light version of a dubbel. A "singel," if you will. Floral grain and yeast, with light nodes of pears and potpourri, only without any booze or spiciness.

Tastes very complex but still light and refreshing, with the fruitiness of a Belgian pale and the bright, grassy finish of a good Municher. Apricots, peaches, and hay up from, a little bit of spice in the middle and grassy flowers on the back end. Quite nice.

 1,233 characters

Photo of NeroFiddled
4.24/5  rDev +6.3%
look: 4 | smell: 4.25 | taste: 4.25 | feel: 4.25 | overall: 4.25

Brouwerij St. Bernardus NV "St. Bernardus Extra 4"
33 cl brown glass bottle
$5.99 @ Total Wine & More, Cherry Hill, NJ

Notes via stream of consciousness: Just getting back to finish up my St. Bernardus reviews, it's not like I haven't had this one many times before. It might be my favorite St. Bernardus in terms of simple drinkability. I could probably drink 8 of these in a row rather easily. But, given the price, that's not an option; I'd rather take the stronger versions when it comes down to money because they all cost roughly the same unless you're buying it by the case, which I cannot afford. Back on track, beautiful pour with a massive head of rocky white brought up over a slightly hazy gold with a brass cast. Excellent head retention due in part to its fine-bubbled gently effervescent carbonation, and very good lacing. The aroma is sweetish with notes of warm honey-drizzled doughy bread, dried apricots, peach, flowers, vanilla, banana, light herbs, yeast, and a dusting of light spice - it's not a bold aroma, but if you look it is complex. The flavor follows with some cereal character (mainly oats and wheat), a greater herbal presence, a hint of lemon, and some more pronounced yeasty spiciness . It's moderately bitter, and despite the sweetness of the malt upfront it finishes dry with residual herbs, flowers, light spice, and a spritz of lemon. It's remarkably drinkable, and at 4.8% ABV it's just a touch weaker than Budweiser. Medium-light in body and slightly creamy with a median, seemingly natural-fine-bubbled carbonation. Subtle, and supple - yet completely fulfilling in flavor! I'd often thought that "La Fin Du Monde" from Unibroue might be my "deserted island beer", but I'd forgotten about this one.

 1,740 characters

Photo of Ryan_DelMastro
4.66/5  rDev +16.8%
look: 4.25 | smell: 4.5 | taste: 4.75 | feel: 4.75 | overall: 4.75

Photo of WillieThreebiers
3.9/5  rDev -2.3%
look: 3.75 | smell: 3.75 | taste: 4 | feel: 3.75 | overall: 4

Photo of Phyl21ca
3.82/5  rDev -4.3%
look: 4 | smell: 3.75 | taste: 3.75 | feel: 3.75 | overall: 4

Bottle: Poured a clear golden color ale with a large pure white foamy head with good retention and some lacing. Aroma of residual sugar with some peppery yeast notes. Taste is a great mix of residual candi sugar with some peppery and spicy yeast notes. Body is about average with good carbonation. Easy drinking with just enough complexity.

 340 characters

Photo of Jerseyislandbeer
4.25/5  rDev +6.5%
look: 4.25 | smell: 4.25 | taste: 4.25 | feel: 4.25 | overall: 4.25

Cellered for a year and a half since my visit to Belgium and the tour of this excellent brewery. Brought from the shop afterwards. Pours a hazy golden colour with a white head. Aroma has spicy Belgian yeast, pale malts, citrus, fruits & hints of sweet caramel. Moderate carbonation. Tastes follows the same lines as the aroma with banana. A moderate dry bitter finish. A outstanding abbey ale.

 394 characters

Photo of josanguapo
3/5  rDev -24.8%
look: 3 | smell: 3 | taste: 3 | feel: 3 | overall: 3

From Beergium. In La Trappe chalice. Playing Blackwell Legacy. Dry, with notes that reminds me pear and apple cider, a profile that bores me a bit, but with good body for such a low abv.

 186 characters

Photo of polloenfuego
4.12/5  rDev +3.3%
look: 4.25 | smell: 4 | taste: 4.25 | feel: 4 | overall: 4

Photo of Marius
3.6/5  rDev -9.8%
look: 3.5 | smell: 3.5 | taste: 3.75 | feel: 3.5 | overall: 3.5

Bottle at home. Clear light pale yellow with a tall white head. Notes of flowery hops, citrus, honey, light passion fruit, yeast, bread, spices. Medium body, medium carbonation and a crisp bitter-sweet finish.

 209 characters

Photo of NickThePyro
4/5  rDev +0.3%
look: 4 | smell: 4 | taste: 4 | feel: 4 | overall: 4

Photo of Narthax
4.25/5  rDev +6.5%
look: 4.25 | smell: 4.25 | taste: 4.25 | feel: 4.25 | overall: 4.25

Photo of vainosuomi
4.02/5  rDev +0.8%
look: 3.5 | smell: 4 | taste: 4.25 | feel: 3.5 | overall: 4

Look: hazy light tan, minimal white head
Smell: quite fruity—crisp apple, Belgian yeast, pear, no discernible hops, light pale malt sweetness.
Taste: again fruit forward like nose, slight citrusy and spicy hops, bright and relatively sweet. Dry and mildly bitter finish make the hops more apparent
Feel: Crisp, smooth, moderate carbonation, medium/light body.

Overall: a very solid Belgian pale ale, but I don't see myself getting it much in the future as I prefer Duvel which is generally more available.

 508 characters

Photo of byronic
4.25/5  rDev +6.5%
look: 4.75 | smell: 4 | taste: 4.25 | feel: 4.5 | overall: 4.25

Photo of epyon396
3.95/5  rDev -1%
look: 3.75 | smell: 3.75 | taste: 4 | feel: 4.25 | overall: 4

Photo of Tsar_Riga
4.17/5  rDev +4.5%
look: 4.5 | smell: 4.25 | taste: 4 | feel: 4.25 | overall: 4.25

A - This is what a pale should look like, with a light yellow golden hue, clear, with a bright white head, persistent, with tensile lacing.

S - Quiet nose, with lots of pear and apple notes, a bit of spun sugar, and an earthy quality buried below.

T - Opens with fruits, pear flesh and white grapes, middle introduces some minerality, and the close is quiet and mildly acidic, with a spicy, bitter bite.

M - Not too thin, a very easy drinker, with moderate carbonation, a hint of drying.

O - Such a change of pace from the typical Belgian Pale, this is a beautiful example with subtle flavor and feel. I need to get more of these.

 635 characters

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St. Bernardus Extra 4 Belgian Abbey Ale from Brouwerij St. Bernardus NV
3.99 out of 5 based on 358 ratings.
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