Gavroche | Brasserie De Saint-Sylvestre

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455 Ratings

Brewed by:
Brasserie De Saint-Sylvestre

Style: French Bière de Garde

Alcohol by volume (ABV): 8.50%

Availability: Year-round

Notes / Commercial Description:
No notes at this time.

Added by BeerAdvocate on 01-07-2001

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Ratings: 455 |  Reviews: 242
Reviews by kevd193213:
Photo of kevd193213
3.6/5  rDev -5%
look: 3.5 | smell: 3.5 | taste: 3.5 | feel: 3.5 | overall: 4

BOTM 12 ounce bottle. Reddish copper slithly cloudy pour with a huge fizzy cream head. Aroma of barnyard malt, straw, sharp hops and grains. Full body. Taste of earthy hops with an oaky finish that lingers. Really different but very easy to drink and enjoyable. Perfect on a fall evening.

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More User Reviews:
Photo of jazzyjeff13
4.24/5  rDev +11.9%
look: 4 | smell: 4.25 | taste: 4.25 | feel: 4.25 | overall: 4.25

A 330ml bottle with a BB of Dec 2017. Acquired ages ago from a webshop. Described on the label as a top-fermented beer; named after a character from Les Miserables.

A: Poured into a Duvel tulip. Bottle conditioned. A rich coppery-reddish hue with good carbonation and some light floating sediment. Yields a large head of creamy off-white foam that lasts for a few minutes before subsiding to a persistent surface layer. Some lacing.

S: Aroma of rich caramel malt with hints of barley sugar sweetness, grain, fruity yeast esters, subtle earthiness and faint stewed leaves. Perhaps the merest twinge of oxidation, but this doesn't detract from the character. Very nice.

T: Tastes of sweet caramel malt with notes of grain, barley sugar, fruity yeast, mild leafiness and a hint of earthiness. The booze is extremely well hidden. Little bitterness to speak of, with a lingering grainy sweetness upon swallowing.

M: Mouthfeel is smooth and tingly, with lively carbonation and great body. Superb texture; creamy with a touch of fizz. Aftertaste of caramel malt, grain and fruity yeast.

O: Excellent - a fantastic biere de garde. Looks lovely, while the aroma and flavour are a delectable blend of grainy caramel malt, fruity yeast and subtle leafiness. Rich, creamy body. Very drinkable; the 8.5% goes virtually unnoticed. A classic - well worth sampling if you have the chance.

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Photo of biboergosum
4/5  rDev +5.5%
look: 4 | smell: 4 | taste: 4 | feel: 4 | overall: 4

750ml bottle, with one of the strangest, yet eventually simplest (thanks, honey!) cork enclosures that I have ever seen. A beer that apparently celebrates the lowly newsboy, and is also part of a seasonal gift pack available in Alberta, with one glass per bottle, which is two glasses too may, IMHO.

This beer pours a clear, medium copper amber hue, with two fingers of puffy, silky, finely foamy off-white head, which leaves some random swaths of splattered fuzzy lace around the glass as it slowly ebbs away.

It smells of bready, lightly biscuity pale malt, soused apple and pear puree, a bit of oily nuttiness, and some floral, earthy hops. The taste is somewhat sour bready caramel malt, middling earthy yeast, some well proffered orchard fruitiness, earthy, leafy, and somewhat spicy hops, and a rather subtle booze warming.

The bubbles are quite frothy, and a bit fizzy, the body medium-light in weight, and generally pretty smooth, nothing else taking further issue with the status quo. It finishes off-dry, the bready malt putting down roots, the yeast planning for their late spring vacation, the fruit aping in a somewhat garish manner, and the sole efforts of the drying alcohol almost appreciated by this point.

A beer redolent of the French countryside? You bet, unequivocally. The best part, however, is the relative lack of yeasty offsets, which usually seem to bleed over for this style, yet do us the favour of forgoing that altogether here, leaving us with a pale malty, kind of obscured boozy beau of a bevy, if you'll excuse my French.

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Photo of superspak
4.1/5  rDev +8.2%
look: 4 | smell: 4 | taste: 4 | feel: 4 | overall: 4.5

330 ml bottle into tulip glass, 1320 bottle coding. Pours very hazy/cloudy reddish brown color with a 2 finger dense light khaki head with good retention, that reduces to a small cap that lingers. Nice spotty soapy lacing clings around the glass, with a fair amount of streaming carbonation. Aromas of big raisin, apricot, cherry, pear, apple, caramel, toffee, toast, brown sugar, wood, herbal, grass, pepper, and yeast earthiness. Damn nice aromas with good balance an complexity of fruity/earthy yeast and dark/bready malt notes; with good strength. Taste of raisin, apricot, cherry, pear, apple, caramel, toffee, toast, brown sugar, wood, herbal, grass, pepper, and yeast earthiness. A fair amount of earthy yeast spiciness on the finish; with lingering notes of raisin, cherry, apricot, pear, apple, caramel, toffee, toast, brown sugar, wood, herbal, grass, pepper, and yeast earthiness on the finish for a while. Damn nice complexity and robustness of fruity/earthy yeast and dark/bready malt flavors; with a great malt/yeast balance and zero cloying flavors after the finish. Medium carbonation and body; with a smooth, moderately crisp, and fairly creamy/bready mouthfeel that is nice. Alcohol is very well hidden with a slight warming present after the finish. Overall this is an excellent Biere de Garde style. All around great complexity and balance of fruity/earthy yeast and dark/bready malt flavors; and very smooth and crisp to sip on for the ABV. A very enjoyable offering.

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Photo of oberon
3.28/5  rDev -13.5%
look: 3.5 | smell: 3 | taste: 3 | feel: 3.5 | overall: 4

I really enjoy the biere de garde style,this seemed to be out of that category in its traits.Poured a hazed lighter amber shade with a huge blooming white head that never settled.Aromas of pilsner malt with a faint leafy note,not really a whole lot going on.Flavors are dryish and lightly toasted,a bit of freshly baked bread in the finish.Does not seem that it could be 8.5%abv.,its rather light.Eh I was expecting more,there are many better of the style.

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Photo of JudgeRoughneck
4.09/5  rDev +7.9%
look: 3.5 | smell: 4.5 | taste: 4 | feel: 4 | overall: 4

AROMA- Rich, thick, maltiness,- molasses, caramel, Steen's cane syrup, with a big black cherry ester, herbal hop is restrained but noticeable, grape skin and apricot notes, ever so faint musty malt character

APPEARANCE- Gigantic out of control rocky biege head, deep, dfark bronze beer with slight chill haze, thick frothy lace.

FLAVOR- Deep candy-sweet malt base is well-attenuated and kept in balance by assertive alcohol and a punchy hop bitterness. Big dried cherry ester. Big perfumey herbal hop hit in the finish lingers.

MOUTHFEEL- medium-light bodied and chewy, lively carbonation, alcohol numbs palate a bit.

OVERALL- Comes off almost like an American Strong or British Old Ale, very bombastic for biere de guarde, but tasty none the less. Big but balanced, intense, but not really complex. Would probably make a great cellaring project.

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Photo of tbryan5
4.75/5  rDev +25.3%

Photo of Marc33
1/5  rDev -73.6%

Photo of Todd
4.3/5  rDev +13.5%
look: 4 | smell: 4 | taste: 4.5 | feel: 4 | overall: 4.5

Presentation: 11.2 fl. oz. brown bottle. No freshness date. Labeled a special bottle fermented ale. Strange profile of some kid with a cap and scarf. Very French.

Appearance: Dark red/brown with a nice off-white, sticky, creamy lace head comprised of various bubble sizes. Colour reminds me of real cherry juice.

Smell: Rather clean smelling with a really faint tartness and light malt toasted aroma. Perhaps a bit herbal and earthy in the nose too.

Taste: Creamy mouthfeel (from the lively carbonation) upfront. Medium bodied. Very herbal, slightly medicinal, spice flavour in the first sip; ginger-like. This is followed by a abrupt crispness and sharp, quick, hop bitterness. It wants to be tart, but is held back. The brew then settles into a slightly toasted (a bit roasted) malt character with strong coffee-milk-like flavours and mild caramel notes at the end (more like malted milk). Malt sweetness is oddly creamy, lacto-like. Finishes with the later on the palate.

Notes: One of the more interesting brews to have blessed my fridge in a long time. So complex and distinct.

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Photo of Jason
3.73/5  rDev -1.6%
look: 4.5 | smell: 4 | taste: 3.5 | feel: 4 | overall: 3.5

Huge pale beige froth with a multi-sized bubbly rocky form. Sticks like a champ and hangs around courtesy of the active carbonation. Cloudy tawny amber hue blocks out any rays of light.

Sweet honey, berry tart fruitiness, chalky toasted malt and some earthy yeast make up the complex yet very inviting aroma.

Big musty palate with a mineral / earthy flavour throughout. Very crisp with an aged dry flavour. Slight tartness jumps in and tosses up a dried berry flavour. Lots of higher alcohols and yeasty flavours going around, spicy phenols dance around with suggestions of clove, ginger and dill. Malt character is very dry with a withered toasted grain flavour.

Must be served at cellar temperature, when it is too cold the phenols and mustiness is fierce. Very complex and a brew that is somewhat of an acquired taste also. This is definitely strong enough to pair up with pungent cheeses.

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Photo of warriorsoul
3.94/5  rDev +4%
look: 3 | smell: 4 | taste: 4 | feel: 4 | overall: 4

Picked one of these up after a sample at the Belgian Beer Fest.
Dark copper in color with half the glass filling with aerated foam...leaves some webbed lacing as it fades.
Very inviting in the aroma...boatload of malt, mild spice, banana..
The taste is mildly sweet...quite spicy with a bitter finish. Fruity with citrus mainly...peppery esters, bready yeast flavor as well. Finishes very real sense of the alcohol.
Mouthfeel is medium-bodied and as was seen in the pour, quite carbonated...very easy to consume a couple of these.

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Photo of GreenMountainBoy
4.5/5  rDev +18.7%

Photo of donunrue
5/5  rDev +31.9%

Photo of jakester
3.71/5  rDev -2.1%
look: 4.5 | smell: 3.5 | taste: 3.5 | feel: 4 | overall: 4

I bought this as a single at Union Jack's on the Manatawny. I drank it, mistakenly, in a pilsner glass. This beer wants to jump out of the glass! No date can be found anywhere.

Pours a hazy orange/amber, with a huge three finger head of beige colored foam. The head falls to a good coating and a ring, with fantastic lacing. Carbonation appears moderate.

Aroma is very fruity, with notes of sour cherries, grapes, and apples, and a caramel candy background. Smells clean for the style.

Flavor is dark caramel, toasted malt, slightly tart, and fruits like above. I expected more in the way of sourness. Hop bitterness is fairly high. Alcohol is pretty well hidden. The flavor of this beer is on the weak side for the style. Aftertaste is bitter, malty, and slightly tart.

Mouthfeel is highly effervescent carbonation, making the body feel more full than it actually is. I'd say the body is low to medium, with some residual sugar present. Finish is short and tingly.

This is disappointing for a Flanders Red, but overall, not a bad beer. Highly carbonated, bitter, and mildly tasty. Pretty good burps!

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Photo of wattoclone
4.51/5  rDev +19%
look: 4.5 | smell: 4.75 | taste: 4.25 | feel: 4.5 | overall: 4.75

Dark unfiltered amber with white head. Delectable fruity aroma of apricot, pear and apple. The taste is slightly sweet, yeasty with a tart cherry finish. Very easy, smooth drinking. Sort of like a cross between a saison and a Belgian pale ale, it was very enjoyable. Thankfully, on draft at Capone's so I didn't have to travel to France.

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Photo of jondeelee
4.1/5  rDev +8.2%
look: 4 | smell: 4 | taste: 4.5 | feel: 3 | overall: 4

Gavroche, charming in name and association with Les Miserables, is a strong beer (8.5% ABV) that comes with a heavily malty nose. Molasses and caramelized brown sugars dominate here, along with vanilla, wet wheat, chocolate malt, and milk chocolate aromas.

On the tongue, the beer gives an immediate shock of cognac-like flavors, where alcoholic sugars with not-so-subtle hints of date, raisin, and wood-grain alcohol wash lovingly over the tastebuds. Molasses and brown sugar join the foray with reckless abandon, and port wine caramels round out the assault. The brew is quite carbonated--medium-heavy--and the fizziness unfortunately seems to shorten the length of the malty aftertaste. Mouthfeel medium-light.

Overall, the flavors present in Gavroche are excellent, the brewers having obviously chosen top-quality ingredients and used them liberally. The brew's one weakness is its high carbonation, which, in addition to slightly robbing the taste, makes the beer feel more like a soft drink on the tongue and soft palate. Still, this is a brew to be reckoned with. Well worth trying.

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Photo of OompaMentor
3.14/5  rDev -17.2%
look: 3.5 | smell: 2 | taste: 3.5 | feel: 3.5 | overall: 3.5

The Brewer bottles many styles of beer under the name Gavroche. The picture shown is the French Red Ale which is a Biere Sur Lie (wine beer), not Biere de Garde as noted as the style. Poured the French Ale into a snifter.
A - brown caramel color with lots of carbonation; if you pour to fast you will have lots of head
S - very slight smell of cherry
T - a light port wine with slightly tart fizz
F - fizzy

Overall, an okay beer.

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Photo of glid02
3.7/5  rDev -2.4%
look: 4 | smell: 4 | taste: 3.5 | feel: 4 | overall: 3.5

Picked this up at Tower on Piedmont in Atlanta.

Pours a hazy brownish-copper color with a towering off-white head, I have to wait and let this one settle before finishing the pour. The head recedes into a medium-sized pancake on top leaving decent lacing.

Smells of lightly toasted malts with hints of berries. Once the beer warms a bit a small amount of funk comes out.

Tastes similar to how it smells. Until the beer warms there are only lightly toasted sweet malt flavors with hints of berries. Once the beer warms there's a very small amount of funk, but the aforementioned flavors are still dominant. Slightly dry finish. There's not a whole lot of evidence of the 8.5% ABV.

Mouthfeel is good. It's got a good thickness with carbonation that's surprisingly not over the top after the amount of head in the pour.

Drinkability is good. The beer is certainly easier to drink once it's allowed to warm.

Overall this was a beer that I enjoyed, but I'm still trying to fully appreciate Biere de Garde's so maybe I didn't enjoy it as much as I should have given the style. Still, it's worth a shot.

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Photo of rastaman
3.87/5  rDev +2.1%
look: 3.5 | smell: 4 | taste: 4 | feel: 4 | overall: 3.5

Flanders Red Ale? Didn't pick it as that, nor did it say that on the label. Savoury, caramelly, slightyl yeasty. NIce bitter, herbal hops in the finish, full flavoured, very pleasant, tasted like a typical dark Biere de Garde, something a bit vinous about it aswell, really tasty in the end (Bottle- GBBF 03')

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Photo of JIMTRK16
3.5/5  rDev -7.7%

Photo of rhoadsrage
3.08/5  rDev -18.7%
look: 3.5 | smell: 3 | taste: 3 | feel: 3.5 | overall: 3

(Served in a tulip glass)

A- The first gentle pour is a full glass of head. After a few minutes of resting the second pour reveals a crystal clear red body with a slight pink hue. There is a big carbonation of tiny bubbles and the head last for a bit making clouds on the side of the glass.

S- This beer has a soft brown malt note that has a bit of wood and cardboard note to it, but is otherwise a very clean smell.

T- There is a soft roasted sweetness that has a hint of raisins and wood to it with a slight tartness that turns more bitter at the finish. There is a faint fusel alcohol note that increases as the beer warms and unfortunately brings out the bitterness aswell.

M- This beer has a medium mouthfeel with a soft alcohol heat that increases as the beer warms. There is a fizzy texture at the end that really cleans the flavor of the tongue.

D- This beer is a bit dull with not many flavors and those that are there are not very interesting. Especially at this price point I was expecting at least a little flavor.

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Photo of LXIXME
3.56/5  rDev -6.1%
look: 4 | smell: 3.5 | taste: 3.5 | feel: 3.75 | overall: 3.5

Photo of JMS1512
4/5  rDev +5.5%

Photo of Jcbroome
3.71/5  rDev -2.1%
look: 3.75 | smell: 3.25 | taste: 4 | feel: 3.5 | overall: 3.75

Photo of scottford
4.31/5  rDev +13.7%
look: 3.75 | smell: 4.5 | taste: 4.5 | feel: 4 | overall: 4

Found a bottle at a Cora in Strasbourg. Best by date: 12.11.15

Pours a hazy copper - almost hazelnut - shade of brown with 2-3 fingers of an off white head.

Smells similar to that of a Belgian tripel, just toned down. Those spices do tend to stick out though.

There's barely any taste on the front of the tongue. The most predominant taste in this beer is a slight "twang" in the back of your mouth. It's not unpleasant... just different. It's more malt-forward, with those spice notes being downplayed significantly.

Feels very smooth on the palate.

Overall, this is a very good beer and at 8.5% alcohol I really have no idea where they're putting it. This is a good and filling beer.

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Gavroche from Brasserie De Saint-Sylvestre
Beer rating: 3.79 out of 5 with 455 ratings