De Proef Reserve Signature Ale (w/ Tomme Arthur) | De Proefbrouwerij (bvba Andelot)

De Proef Reserve Signature Ale (w/ Tomme Arthur)De Proef Reserve Signature Ale (w/ Tomme Arthur)
322 Ratings
De Proef Reserve Signature Ale (w/ Tomme Arthur)De Proef Reserve Signature Ale (w/ Tomme Arthur)

Brewed by:
De Proefbrouwerij (bvba Andelot)

Style: Belgian Strong Pale Ale

Alcohol by volume (ABV): 8.50%

Availability: Rotating

Notes / Commercial Description:
No notes at this time.

Added by ccrida on 07-25-2007

Bros Score:
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Ratings: 322 |  Reviews: 239
Photo of Deuane
4.3/5  rDev +5.9%
look: 4 | smell: 4 | taste: 4.5 | feel: 4 | overall: 4.5

Thanks to mughugger for a chance at trying this one.

A-Orange tinted copper body with a medium white head that reduced to a thin wisp and left spotty lace.

S-Sweet fruit aroma of apple,pear and apricot. A bit of light Brett sourness and a hint of spice.

T-The beer equivalent to a sour apple cider. Mild Brett notes liven things up and hints of sweetness and spice makes this delightful.

M-Medium body with a syrupy feel. Nice lingering sour apple flavours.

D-Nice stuff....I love apples, I love sour and I LOVE sour this one is an easy winner for me! Glad to have had the chance to try this interesting and well done collaboration brew.

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Photo of ffejherb
4.12/5  rDev +1.5%
look: 4 | smell: 4.5 | taste: 4 | feel: 4 | overall: 4

750ml bottle into goblet on 11/14/08. Thanks to mughugger for sharing!

A - Clear amber/orange body with moderate carbonation and one-finger white head that receded into a patchy film and left modest amount of lacing around the glass.

S - Super sweet nose with apple and apricot notes up front. Some spicy, earthy yeast and sour Brett emerges, the latter of which is pretty minimal overall.

T - Fruity flavor with lots of apple sweetness with hints of caramel and candi sugar. The Brett is pretty subtle at first, but picks up steam in the finish. Overall, the sourness is pretty mild though.

M - Medium body with a syrupy texture and pretty vigorous carbonation. Finish is mildly sour on the palate.

D - Wow! The was indeed a complex brew with lots of flavor. I was expecting more of a hop profile since Port was involved with this creation, but I was pleasantly surprised by the sweetness, fruitiness and drinkability of this Belgian Strong Ale. The addition of the Brett complemented the sweetness, making this quite a tasty affair.

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Photo of joe1510
4/5  rDev -1.5%
look: 4 | smell: 4 | taste: 4 | feel: 4 | overall: 4

Sam's Marcey

This beer has been down in the cellar for about 7-8 months now. The initial pour fills my glass with a polished bronze liquid with perfect clarity. The body is outlined in gold with orange highlights when backlit. The head grew without much coaxing to a finger + of fizzy off white that fades to a skimming with a thick collar. The collar leaves behind chunky lace after each drink. I'm surprised at the clarity of this brew.

The nose certainly shows signs of brett but what's there is mild and well integrated. A caramel malty backbone starts things off before the damp moldy dead wood and that summer field wild flower quality that fills my entire nose. A touch of peach here and a touch of pear there along with a slice or two of green apple seem to round out the flavor. The brett brings along some of that dry hay-like quality as well. There are not a whole lot of barnyard but more overgrown fields. Each swirl of the glass intensifies the aroma.

The flavor basically follows the aroma step by step. Caramel maltiness gets things started and falls to the back to lay down a solid base while the brett characteristics are exactly as I described in the aroma. The orchard fruitiness jumps out on the finish with the gritty pear, green apples, and peach all in that order of intensity. All the flavors seem to combine seamlessly. My only complaint, and its minor, is that there's too much caramel in this brew. I would appreciate it more if the malts were more of the pale variety. There's a nice spicy hop character that comes around mid palate and lingers through the swallow and beyond.

The body is medium and actually a little heavier than I would have expected but it works surprisingly well with this beer. The fine carbonation produces that Belgian airiness on the swallow and the solid hopping brings a mild bitterness that sticks around.

This is a highly drinkable beer from De Proef. There's not much if any sourness but the fine carbonation and fruity finish keep the bottle tilting often.

Signature Ale is a solid brew from De Proef and Port. The brett didn't have quite the impact I was hoping for but is noticeable and adds some nice characteristics. Well worth seeking out.

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Photo of OStrungT
4.43/5  rDev +9.1%
look: 5 | smell: 4.5 | taste: 4.5 | feel: 4.5 | overall: 4

This beer pours a cloudy yellowish orange color. It boasts a thick, fluffy white head. The head fades slowly, leaving a thick curtain of lace.

This beer has a spicy aroma. It has a nice spicy hop aroma also. I dont detect and Brett though, and that is a bit of a let down. It has a slight clovey aroma. Some earthy yeast notes are present.

This beer tastes much like it smells. Spicy. Very spicy, but very subtle. No sourness that I would expect from the Brett. Oh well.

This beer is very full bodied. It leaves a spicey aftertaste. It is high in carbonation, suiting the style.

This beer would not be the best session beer. High alcohol makes it hard to put down too many.

Overall: This beer was good. Not exactly what I expected, but still pretty good. Anything Tomme Aurthur makes is bound to be great.

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Photo of bluemoonswoon
3.97/5  rDev -2.2%
look: 3.5 | smell: 4 | taste: 4 | feel: 4 | overall: 4

750mL, poured into a Duvel tulip

Massive head. Good name for a band and a good way to describe most of this beer as it quickly fills up most of my Duvel glass. Not as tightly packed as the Duvel head, almost looks like a bubble bath, if the water were really really dirty, but that's mostly because of the chill haze. Head could stand to last longer and leave a bit more lacing.

Pretty good shot of bananna mixed with sugary cloves and light lemon zest. Slightest bit vegetal

It's been so long since I've had this style of beer I almost forget what to think of it. Little bit of boozy heat, solid amount of medicinol hop bitterness. I'll let this one warm up a bit and continue in a moment.
Honey becomes more evident and the beer clears up. Nice sugary fruitness, bit of pear and apricot, nice complexity and just a tiny bit spicy but just not where I want it to be overall. If I could give this beer a 4.25 for taste I would because it's better than a plain old 4, the complexity and fruit flavors really give it some extra character but the mouthfeel is just the slightest bit thin and I think takes away from the overall flavor of this beer.

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Photo of zeff80
4.37/5  rDev +7.6%
look: 4 | smell: 4.5 | taste: 4.5 | feel: 4.5 | overall: 4

A - Poured out a cloudy, golden hue with hints of amber. It had a small, fizzy, bubbly, off-white head that left some traces of lace.

S - It smelled of brett, a little horse blanket funk and some spice. A light caramel malt aroma was present, too.

T - It tasted a little funky and sour. Burnt toast maltiness and a spicy hop kick add to this nicely balanced Belgian ale. Also, a little alcohol taste.

M - It was very crisp, sharp and had a good bite at the back of the throat. It was medium-bodied.

D - This is a good brew. Nice brett funkiness in a strong ale.

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Photo of PittBeerGirl
4.25/5  rDev +4.7%
look: 4.5 | smell: 4.5 | taste: 4 | feel: 4 | overall: 4.5

Edit: 12/30/12...4 years later and this one is still around! I didn't really edit the objective critique of my review-thats pretty accurate-my preferences have changed and the drinkability is now an overall score. Original score-4.03 (actually I think by old standards it was a 4.15)
Thanks to koopa for this one in a trade!

A- Body is a dark, cloudy golden color with hints of amber hues within. Pours with a giant foamy white head that slowly subsides to 1 finger. A lot of lacing is left behind in the glass. Cloudiness is thick and uniform.

S-Floral hops are definitely the accent of the nose, underneath are exotic fruits, brett, and a hint of alcohol.

T-Upfront is dry fruity (apricot, mango, and citrus) and floral hops flavors with a solid brett backbone. A big bash of hop bitterness hits for the finish but this brew has a pretty dry flavor overall. Some residual tart brett and hop bitterness lingers on the palate.

M- Medium weight body with medium carbonation. On the dry side overall-but creamy upfront.

D- This is a good beer with a good character. I really like the hop accents used in this brew. ABV is minimally detectable, but because of the dryness this is still a slow sipper. Looking forward to other port, lost abbey, and de proef beers. .

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Photo of abfraser
4.13/5  rDev +1.7%
look: 4.5 | smell: 4 | taste: 4.5 | feel: 4 | overall: 3.5

A: Beautiful hazy copper color. Pours with a nice sticky frothy white head.

S: Floral, yeasty, caramel malt. Don't get much Brett at all.

T/M: Now I taste the Brett. A little sour but it plays second fiddle to a nice citrus and floral sweetness. Good caramel malt backbone. Some bitterness in the aftertaste from the hops. Medium bodies, good creamy mouthfeel, well-balanced stuff

D: Way too expensive to drink often, although I certainly would if I could. Great overall.

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Photo of Slynger
4.53/5  rDev +11.6%
look: 4.5 | smell: 4 | taste: 5 | feel: 4 | overall: 4.5

Lightly hazed, light sunny yellow-orange, with a nice cap of tight cream colored fuzz, lightly creamy.

The nose delivers a touch of vanilla sweetness along with tropical fruits, yeast, some funk and spice.

Excellent flavor. Hints of vanilla along with honey drizzled lemony sweetness. Lots of different fruits appear, most notably apricot, tangerine, and melon, but apples and pears make an appearance as well. A perfect amount of light, tartly funky must, solidly yeasty, with a peppery spicy finish (with a touch of warmth). Nice body, full-medium, with a solidly fuzzing, lightly creamy carbonation.

This is truly an outstanding brew, one of the best I've ever had. I can't wait to search for more of these sweet nectar's.

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

Thanks gford217 for this brew. Spring 2008 bottle, poured into a goblet.

Hazy, but glowing orange, with a very fluffy, large and long lasting off-white head, with a lot of lacing. Very fine bubbles come to the top keeping this amazing head alive for a long time.
A very interesting, complex aroma with a number of somewhat unexpected notes. It has some funkiness, but a lot of citric hops; more grapefruit than I ever noticed into a "belgian" brew. Sweet candy-like malts, spices, herbs, than more orange peel. At times it is not perfectly pleasant, but always complex and intriguing.
Medium bodied, it starts sweetish, malty, quickly evolving into a hoppy bitterness that brings mostly oranges and grapefruits, at times even astringent. There are some clear herbal characters, and the spices add to the complexity, although at times things don't blend that well. The yeast profile is a bit underrepresented for my taste.
At times the Amarillo hops are

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Photo of taylorhamrick
4.12/5  rDev +1.5%
look: 5 | smell: 3 | taste: 5 | feel: 4 | overall: 3.5

Poured from a 750 mL bottle into a tulip. Found it at a local grocery store (and it makes me proud to have a grocery store with gems like this.)

It looks amazing. Amazing. Amber colored with a puffy, cloudy white head that sits and inch or more on top of the beer. The smell is subdued. There is a hint of ripe fruit and aromatic hops and a bit of yeast. But the smell doesn't provide the shining moment for this beer. The taste is incredible. A bit hoppy, more hoppy than any other Belgian pale ale I've had. Which I really like, aromatic and fruity hops lie on top of sweet maltiness and the classic yeast of Belgians. I really enjoyed drinkin this, but after 750 mL, I doubt that I would drink another. It took me nearly 45 mins to drink just one. But I really do like this. I can't imagine what it took, or what might have transpired, in these two minds creating one beer.

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Photo of John_M
4.12/5  rDev +1.5%
look: 4 | smell: 4.5 | taste: 4 | feel: 4 | overall: 4

I'm really wondering if this beer would benefit from some short term aging. At least the bottle I had, it improved appreciably with air contact and as it warmed.

The beer pours a peachy gold color with good head retention and fair lacing. The nose is really the most impressive feature about this beer at present, consisting of honey, butter, orange/cherry Koolaide and hoppy citrus. The flavors on the palate for the most part replicated the nose, though it seemed to be dominated by orange citrus and honey. The hoppiness on the finish became more pronounced as I went along, which made me think the brewer was going for a Belgian IPA after all. The beer was fairly light on the palate, and drinkability was pretty good. Abv. is well disguised in this beer, and the finish really smoothed out over time.

A solid beer, but I confess I liked the Allagash collaboration effort better.

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Photo of Beaver13
3.61/5  rDev -11.1%
look: 4.5 | smell: 3.5 | taste: 3.5 | feel: 4 | overall: 3.5

750ml bottle. Pours a hazy murky golden orange with a huge frothy white head that retains well and laces the glass.

The aroma is subdued, but nice - yeast, sugary malts, some fruits and some hops.

The flavor is sweet malts and fruits with a crisp hop finish with a good amount of bitterness. The mouthfeel is medium to full bodied with smooth carbonation.

Overall, a pretty different but nice Belgian. It's a little too sweet for me.

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Photo of tayner
3.44/5  rDev -15.3%
look: 4.5 | smell: 3 | taste: 3.5 | feel: 3.5 | overall: 3.5

750 ml corked/caged brown bottle.

golden hoeny colored with a slight chill haze, 3 finger eggshell white head with alot of carbonation bubbles. good lacing

smell is banana and spicy hops, sort of a wet hay smell as well, but overall this was not as pleasing of a smell as I was expecting or would have liked.

taste follows smell, overripe banana, spicy hops, and lemony finish. To me it almost resembeled more of a wheat beer than a belgian beer other than the slight biscuity yeast flavor that was in the background.

Creamy and smooth mouthfeel due to all the carbonation.

Drinkability is good, but IMO it needs to be consumed with food and for me isnt a beer I would drink alone again.. although with food i think it would probably pair nicely.

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Photo of arguemaniac
4.4/5  rDev +8.4%
look: 4 | smell: 4 | taste: 5 | feel: 4 | overall: 4

The mildly peppery palate features a bright maltiness, with notes of honey, tart fruitiness, caramel, grain and an elevated sweetness. The deliciously assertive but rounded citrus hoppiness provides a great balance.

Rich, crisp, and exceedingly drinkable, this beer was a real treat.

Highly recommended...

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Photo of Gavage
4.42/5  rDev +8.9%
look: 4 | smell: 4.5 | taste: 4.5 | feel: 4 | overall: 4.5

Appearance: pours a cloudy orange color with a one finger head that quickly breaks apart.

Smell: floral hops, caramel, yeast, and pepper is detectable.

Taste: caramel, citrus, yeast, pepper, green grapes, and a hearty bitterness makes up a well balanced ale.

Mouthfeel: crisp throughout. Also a little dry in the finish. Medium bodied. Aftertaste is long on the flavors.

Drinkability: super drinkability here. This is a great beer, too bad it is so expensive. If you see it, break the wallet open to buy a bottle.

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Photo of koopa
4.35/5  rDev +7.1%
look: 4 | smell: 4 | taste: 4.5 | feel: 4.5 | overall: 4.5

750ml bottle picked up at Ramsey Liquors and consumed at cellar temp.

Appearance - as the previous reviewer mentioned its the color of honey with a nice 2 finger head. fairly clear with some signs of oils/hops in the fluid. Good thick lacing, a fair amount of carbonation.

Smell - lemon, hay, slight menthol / minty herbal quality, some brett characteristics but very subdued.

Taste - Extremely well balanced and blended. No taste is overly dominant. Hints up hay, grass, herbs, and lemon.

Mouthfeel - light to medium body, clean and crisp, a solid mouthfeel that invites more sampling each time.

Drinkability - One of the easiest 8.5 ABV bottles to knock back. No overpowering flavors, excellent balance, carbonation is just right.

I had a preconceived notion that this beer would be a bit more wild but I'm satisfied with how well balanced it actually is. I would drink this brew anytime it was available to me.

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Photo of rsyberg01
4.38/5  rDev +7.9%
look: 4.5 | smell: 4 | taste: 4.5 | feel: 4.5 | overall: 4.5

S - 750 ml bottle picked up at friar tucks a few weeks ago. At cellar temp.

A - Light honey hue, egg shell colored head with fairly nice stickiness to it. very inviting.

S - sour tangy notes up front, smells effervescent if that makes sense, undertones of lemon, definite brett character, slight herbal notes, a touch of grass as well. very nice.

edit:I get a bit of honey in the nose as well

T - biscuit, tang, grassy/herbal notes, not much bitterness to go around just enough to balance, which i like. Lemon plays through as well, though very subtly. Peppery notes.

M - Creamy, clean, bright, finish is just what I was expecting.

D - Unoffensive flavors that are well balanced and easy to enjoy. At 8.5% though, I think one of these would be enough. Maybe two depending on if I have had my daily fix of vodka;)

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Photo of alexgash
4.62/5  rDev +13.8%
look: 4.5 | smell: 5 | taste: 4.5 | feel: 4.5 | overall: 4.5

750 ml bottle.

Slight haze in a deep golden orange body. Tall, rocky, formidable, whitish beige head. Great retention and lacing. Complex nose of grassy, resinous hops, sugary fruits (pears, fruit cocktail), white pepper, horse blanket Brett, baking spices, and sea air funk. Terrific.

Herbal bitter hops and toasted malt flavors up front. Sweet fruits follow along with powdered sugar and some biscuity malt. More herbal hops enter along with some pine and resin notes. Hints of earthy tartness and cobwebs come in before a bittersweet finish. Very nice. Gets even more complex and tasty as it warms. Full-bodied with a creamy feel backed by rollicking bottle-conditioned carbonation. What a great collaboration!

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Photo of tempest
4.15/5  rDev +2.2%
look: 4 | smell: 4 | taste: 4 | feel: 4.5 | overall: 4.5

Picked up a big bottle at New Beer in the Bowery. Pours a hazy dark amber in my tulip.

The aroma is grassy with apricots and perfume. The flavor beings with white pepper, wet farmhouse, and sweet apple (like in pie) and then finishes with a bitter lemon rind note that lasts and lasts with an earth element. Overall there's a little funk, a little fruit, and then a big hoppy finish. Damn this is good.

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Photo of IBUnit63
4.2/5  rDev +3.4%
look: 4.5 | smell: 4.5 | taste: 4 | feel: 4.5 | overall: 4

750 corked and caged into Cab glass...

Muted pop of the synthetic cork. Pours a bountiful 2 1/2-finger head with sourdough muffin tunnels atop a copper-apple-colored head. Sufficient carbonation and calm lacing from head with staying power and good seam.

Solid Belgian yeast, electric wheat-ish yeast and malt with a little Muscat grape tone. Piney and slight floral hops and a little alcohol. Good caramelized malt. Bountiful and balanced.

This has it all - bitter piney hop back with sweet yet unobtrusive caramel malt. Hop oils, alcohol and mild spice (a little coriander and orange zest) work in synergy to make this quite enjoyable with just a hint of Brett horse blanket funkiness.

That husky pale boiled malt feel with slight Brett tones and that silage-ish yet tasty hoppiness make this what it is. This hits the back of the palate like yummy medicine. Becomes as comforting as flannel sheets with warmth, even with the powerful bitterness.

We're sipping this one quite slowly to savor every drop - it packs a wallop - and even when room temperature (though not ideal) is quite complex and enjoyable.

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Photo of Foxman
4.08/5  rDev +0.5%
look: 4.5 | smell: 4 | taste: 4 | feel: 4.5 | overall: 4

It pours an opaque and ardently carbonated golden amber with a thin disk of translucent yellow at the very bottom. Two fingers of fluffy light beige head sustain some time. Mantles of lacing ledge the inside of the glass.

In the aroma, fruity and sweet malt waves waft caramel as well, along with toffee and currants. Green apple esters, piney hops, citrus zest, and a spicy mélange lie atop a feather of alcohol.

Upon sipping, toasted malt and candy sugar duel with a rounded dried fruit note. The hops are almost ephemeral here, with pine and dry citrus flying through pretty quickly. A savory spice character bucks the trend as the alcohol flexes well more than in the aroma. Esters are crisp and a bit minty. A tart undercurrent feeds a crisp, fairly bitter, and nicely dry finish. It comes off as mildly awkward in places, but it has its strengths.

Medium to full bodied, it's smooth, creamy, and glowing with hop and spice energy.

It's got all the earmarks of something special, with a noteworthy collaboration as a foundation. And while it's a touch halting in spots, and while the blending feels patchwork at times, it still delivers in a positive way. The stentorian ABV keeps drinkability a bit lower than it might be otherwise, but it still goes down ably. It didn't wow me, but hey, breaking the mold is a process, not an end in itself.

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Photo of Billolick
4.42/5  rDev +8.9%
look: 4 | smell: 4.5 | taste: 4.5 | feel: 4 | overall: 4.5

Caged and corked (plastic cork at that) Pours dark apricot, and cloudy, oatmeal head is retentive, slowly receding and then turning into a thicker tiny bubble film, lace left behind is generous and intricate. Nose has a lot going on, citrus, barnyard, gooey/resiny hop juice. Big, complex, bold, thoroughly enjoyable creation. Lots of pineapple, lime, resiny hops, bready malts, and then the bonus of Belgian yeast spicing and sour brett. notes. Yum yum yum, an adventure in taste and sensations in every sip. Love this hybrid American/Belgian style and this one is right on. Only drawback here is the sticker shock pricing of $17.99 for the bomber....

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Photo of gregc
4.12/5  rDev +1.5%
look: 4 | smell: 4.5 | taste: 4 | feel: 4 | overall: 4

Bottle poured into a tulip glass.

Pours a hazy orange color with some yeast and a nice decent size foamy white head.

Aroma is wonderful...wild yeasts (wet hay, horse hair, musty cellar)...also get fresh melon, citrus, pine.

Taste is very nice...fresh bread, sweet, wonderful hop balance, nice belgian yeast influence and that wild brett flavor.

The beer is nicely carbonated, and a wonderful balance between the hops and the wild yeast.

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Photo of BuckeyeNation
4.45/5  rDev +9.6%
look: 4.5 | smell: 4.5 | taste: 4.5 | feel: 4 | overall: 4.5

Sun-splashed honey with a twist of orange peel. Despite a barely audible 'pop' when the cork was (easily) extracted, the crown of ivory colored foam is large, creamy and sticky. This beer looks Belgian, which is the highest compliment that I can pay. Abundant lace decorates the glass in attractive fashion.

The best wild ales (or those that use Brettanomyces, at least) aren't one-trick ponies of funk. Signature is exhibit 'A'. The nose is an aromatic melange of citric hops, golden malt and sourish Brett. The end result is incredibly complex. Any bets on whether or not the flavor will follow suit?

It wasn't until I did a little research prior to this review that I discovered that Signature Ale contains such a large quantity of hops (Amarillo, U.K. Phoenix and German Brewer's Gold). That's a killer hop bill and it's a shame that I didn't pop this baby open sooner. Make no mistake, it's still delicious. It's also much more hoppy than the typical BSPA.

Who would have ever imagined that a beer combining the best attributes of IPAs, BSPAs and wild ales would be so good and so drinkable? Since those are three of my favorite styles and since De Proefbrouwerij and The Lost Abbey are two of my favorite breweries in all the world, this collaborative effort was bound to be... out of this world. I'm amazed at how much hoppiness has persisted over the past year.

Signature Ale's best feature (other than the flavor) is the mind-blowing contrast between bitter, sour-funky and sweet. The flavor profile, in no particular order: white grapefruit and orange zest, tart apples, sourdough bread crust, honey, white pepper and horse blanket funk. You want dizzying depth and complexity? This beer is overflowing with it.

Given a minimal escape of CO2 on cork removal, and given almost no visible carbonation, it's amazing how gorgeous the appearance is on each subsequent pour. The upper third of the glass is positively crusted with lace. I'm also floored by how completely the alcohol has been cloaked. My increasingly fuzzy brain tells me that 8.5% is... just... about... right.

The mouthfeel isn't quite as outstanding as the rest of the beer. The biggest reason is the relative shortage of carbonation. More bubbles would have resulted in more creamy volume. Nitpicking? Probably.

It's fantastic that Messieurs Naudts and Arthur decided to brew Signature Ale a second time. Here's hoping they see the wisdom in making it a semi-regular release because this is the finest example of a Wild Belgian Strong India Pale Ale that I have ever consumed. Highly recommended.

This bottle is from the original release. The second release, which is from Spring 2008, has a small 'B2' near the silk-screened government warning. Thanks to the incredibly generous Talisker for the opportunity.

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De Proef Reserve Signature Ale (w/ Tomme Arthur) from De Proefbrouwerij (bvba Andelot)
Beer rating: 4.06 out of 5 with 322 ratings
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