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Allagash Four | Allagash Brewing Company

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Allagash FourAllagash Four
997 Ratings
Allagash FourAllagash Four

Brewed by:
Allagash Brewing Company
Maine, United States

Style: Quadrupel (Quad)

Alcohol by volume (ABV): 10.00%

Availability: Year-round

Notes / Commercial Description:
We brew this beer with four malts, four sugars, four hop varieties and we ferment it four times, using four different yeast strains. The complexity of the brewing process is matched by the complexity of this unique beer. Flavors of raisin, candied fruit and plum express themselves throughout.

Added by UnionMade on 03-26-2004

Bros Score:
User Ratings & Reviews
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Ratings: 997 |  Reviews: 464
Photo of mithrascruor
4.32/5  rDev +5.9%
look: 4 | smell: 4.5 | taste: 4.5 | feel: 4 | overall: 4

750 mL bottle poured into a chalice.

Appearance: Pours a hazy brownish-red color that glows in the light. Nice creamy off-white head is fairly dense with decent retention.

Smell: Nice aroma of fruits, yeast, and hops. A bit like a hoppy pineapple cake.

Taste: Initially very much like a Tripel, with the hops and yeast. Pineapple, orange, and apricot come into play, with the nice hop spiciness behind. No real bread flavor. Finishes with a bit of a bitter aftertaste.

Mouthfeel: Medium-bodied with a good deal of lightly tingly carbonation.

Drinkability: Pretty tasty, and no real hint of alcohol, but the flavor is somewhat intense, and takes a while to drink.

A nice beer - definitely not really a quad. The flavor, particularly with the yeast, can be a bit strong. Not my favorite, style-wise, but it is nicely done for sure.

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Photo of perrymarcus
4.08/5  rDev 0%
look: 5 | smell: 4.5 | taste: 4 | feel: 4 | overall: 3.5

750ml corked/caged bottle served in an oversized wineglass. batch #22.

briefly engaged in a vicious battle with a cork - stubborn bastard! emerged victor but at a cost; right hand is now cramped and throbbing...

pours a regal, ruddy chestnut tone with a luminous deep red/orange relection when held to the light. solid finger-plus of a beige head demonstrates considerable retention and nice walls of lacing. a real beaut.

nose is headlined by belgian yeast, sweet maltiness, and a spicy, fruity type of character. shades of a particular belgian quad that i can't quite place... st bernardus, maybe, or koningshoeven.

flavor follows the nose with its sweet malts and belgian yeasts. pretty balanced, with a bit of a hoppy bitterness in the finish. some alcohol warmth. not quite what i was expecting after the nose, but close. a nicely built beer.

medium-plus bodied, creamy mouthfeel. probably not one you'd want to suck down all night, but drinkable enough.

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Photo of BobZ
4.35/5  rDev +6.6%
look: 4 | smell: 4 | taste: 4.5 | feel: 4.5 | overall: 4.5

This beer is billed as a "one of a kind" ale and it lives up to that description. To my taste it is most definitely NOT a Belgian Quad, nowhere near a Belgian Quad in flavor profile. It is still an excellent beer, not quite sure where I would put it somewhere between maybe a Tripel and Strong Pale Ale. This review is for a 750ml bottle poured into a Duvel tulip.

Appearance: Dark orange, deeper and cloudier than a barleywine. Nice head that builds well initially and sticks around for awhile. Lacing is very good.

Smell: Nice nose which hints at this beer's complexity, floral hops, some dried fruit (but lighter much more apricot than plum).

Taste: Awesome beer, light fruit and hoppy flavor with little bitterness. The hop flavor is exceptional and executed with extraordinary balance and smoothness and again not very bitter, the balance is outstanding.

Mouth feel: Smooth as smooth can be.

Drinkability: Very drinkable, ABV completely masked.

This is a must try beer, not as a quad or a tripel or any style in particular but just as a unique and well crafted brew.

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Photo of rdickey
3.93/5  rDev -3.7%
look: 3.5 | smell: 3 | taste: 4.5 | feel: 4 | overall: 4

Appearance: Poured from a 750 ml bottle marked "Batch #21". A moderate pour produces a dark reddish amber beer with a fine one-finger head that doesn't linger terribly long, but leaves nice lacing.

Smell: Candied fruits, raisins, and sugar sugar sugar. Having said that, there's a hint of Belgian spice one might associate with a strong dark ale.

Taste: Still sweet, but more balanced that one might expect from the nose. The dried fruit taste dominates, but the spices provide a nice balance, and mellowing vanilla notes come through as well.

Mouthfeel: Medium body and mild to moderate carbonation work here; anything less and you'd risk the sweetness overpowering everything else.

Drinkability: Pretty high, despite the high ABV (and I say this as someone who is not a particular fan of the style).

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Photo of cosmicevan
3.64/5  rDev -10.8%
look: 4.5 | smell: 3 | taste: 4 | feel: 3.5 | overall: 3.5

Had on tap at gingerman. Out of the gate beauty. Builds in the glass like a guiness. Deep amber that fades in shades from darker to light top to bottom. Hardly any detectable nose at all. Subtle fruit in the cherry grape vein. The flavor is different for a quad. Much softer. Much thinner buts leaves a nice refreshing tingle in my mouth. Taste is very fruitpunch with spices. Unique and the alchohol is pretty nicely blended but there for sure. Happy with this offering from allagash, not what i typically look for in a quad but very tasty none-the-less

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Photo of craytonic
4.12/5  rDev +1%
look: 4 | smell: 4.5 | taste: 4 | feel: 4 | overall: 4

Couple of years on this bottle probably helped

Appearance: Reddish-orange-copper-caramel pour, decent head and lacing, although a bit off by allagash standards

Smell: Typical Quad, caramel, toffee, brown sugar, figs, dates, and other dark fruits. No alcohol.

Taste: Toffee, caramel, dates, figs, blood orange, dark rum, a bit boozy after it warms.

Mouthfeel: Creamy, smooth, silky, but not perfect

Drinkability: Incredible for a 10% quad

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Photo of ToasterChef
4.12/5  rDev +1%
look: 4 | smell: 4.5 | taste: 4 | feel: 4 | overall: 4

Poured from a cellar temperature bottle into Gouden Carolus chalice. The bottle is marked Batch #21 and was purchased earlier today. The beer has a large foamy head colored off white. The liquid appears to be a few shades of brown mixed together; I'm tempted to call it tan, or deep copper, or burnt orange, but really it is none of these. There is a lot of carbonation rising within my glass. Lacing appears to be fairly even. The beer has a very interesting, robust aroma. The malts really get to me. There's a touch of sweet, a touch of spice and a touch of alcohol. It reminds me a lot of this beer's Belgian inspirations, but I also picture a pine cone as I inhale. It truly is a Maine Quad. The beer tastes a big spicier than I expected. The finish is especially peppery. The light and dark candi sugars add a subtle sweetness that is very good. The pepper and alcohol linger a bit and leave a warm coating. It is full bodied and feels thick. The carbonation can be readily felt. A mildly sweet and equally sticky film is left upon my lips. I'm enjoying this beverage, but will do so at a slow pace. Perhaps it is best suited split with three of your friends, but I'll be able to consume it all myself over the next couple of hours. It is a beer I would drink again, but there are other Allagashes and Quads that I prefer.

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Photo of drumrboy22
3.65/5  rDev -10.5%
look: 4 | smell: 4 | taste: 3.5 | feel: 3.5 | overall: 3.5

4+ year vintage bottle.  Not sure of the exact date.  Served at cellar temperature.  Poured from 750mL bottle into a Trappistes Rochefort chalice.  Beer was a clear, reddish-amber color, with a very thin, faint head.  Light lacing and low carbonation.

Aroma was sweet rum, raisins, dates and grapes.  Lots of sugar.  Smells great. 

Taste was caramel, raisins, bourbon, oak and dates.  Not bad, but a tad thin.  Probably aged a little too long. 

Good drinkability and very enjoyable.  I had this one down in the cellar and just forgot about it.  I was digging around looking for some treats to enjoy the week before GABF and found this little treasure.  Ages well and is a great interpretation on the style. 

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Photo of joepais
4.5/5  rDev +10.3%
look: 4.5 | smell: 4.5 | taste: 4.5 | feel: 4.5 | overall: 4.5

Poured into a couple of chalices it produced a good two fingers of a off white head that turned into a great lace. The body of the brew was amber/brown in color. The aromas of dark fruits and cherries along with some Belgian yeast filled my head.

The flavor followed the nose, fruity and yeasty. I did detect a little alcohol warmth as well, but it did not detract anything from the flavor. It had a medium to full feel to its body, with good carbonation.

For a quad I will say that it was tasty enough to grab a second glass. The flavor was more than enough to accompany a fine cigar for desert. I often grab this brew when I am in the mood for a fine American Quad. I believe this one is the finest brewed on this side of the pond

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Photo of chefkevlar
4.13/5  rDev +1.2%
look: 4.5 | smell: 4 | taste: 4 | feel: 4 | overall: 4.5

The first pour was 10 minutes our of the fridge into my dogfish snifter. The beer then sat in my tabletop wine chiller set at 54 degrees

A: Pours a chestnut/gingersnap brown color with a thin layer of white head (my first pour was pretty slow, a second, harder pour produced a thick layer)

S: There is a caramel/burnt sugar smell over a lot of sweet fruit aromas. There is a hint of citrus as well and an undercurrent of alcoholic heat

T: Very complex. There are notes of caramel, citrus, vanilla, and some dried fruits. Also present is a bit of heat from the alcohol in the aftertaste. The finish is just slightly bitter with a dry mineral. As it warms the dried fruit and vanilla tones seem to become more pronounced.

M: A medium body with light carbonation.

D: Well this beer is very enjoyable...but at 10% is not something that can be downed quickly. Overall the 750 bottle took me about 45 minutes to work through...but I enjoyed every sip

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Photo of mdfb79
4/5  rDev -2%
look: 4 | smell: 4 | taste: 4 | feel: 4 | overall: 4

Had at a small local tasting.

a - Pours an amber color with one inch of white head.

s - Smells of fruity malt and caramel malts.

t - Tastes of caramel malts, dark fruits,

m - Medium body and low carbonation.

d - A nice quad. Very malty but enjoyable. Would try again.

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Photo of hoptrip619
4.15/5  rDev +1.7%
look: 4.5 | smell: 4.5 | taste: 4 | feel: 4 | overall: 4

Shared a 750ml with Adam at Knb on a slow night...

A: Pours a copper color w/ a pillowy tan head

S: Dark fruits, peppery, caramel, some alcohol

T: Caramelized pears, Belgian spices, a little on the hot side

M: M/F body, medium carbonation

D: Not bad, will have to cellar a bottle for a while and see if the heat subsides.

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Photo of nickfl
4.22/5  rDev +3.4%
look: 4 | smell: 4.5 | taste: 4 | feel: 4 | overall: 4.5

A - Two fingers of off white foam with a tinge of beige that dissipates slowly and leaves nice lace on the glass. The body is a hazy, amber-brown color.

S - Bready yeast and malt dominates the aroma at first, but a swirl of the glass reveals deeper notes of plum and red apple with complex sugar characteristics. Toffee, caramel, and rummy raisins.

T - Sweet caramel malt up front with some peppery yeast and dark bread. The caramel intensifies in the middle with more spicy yeast character and an earthy hop bitterness. The malt character becomes more molasses oriented in the finish with moderate hop bitterness and a bit of red apple fruitiness from the yeast. Lingering notes of apple, brown sugar, caramel, and warm alcohol.

M - Medium-thick body, high carbonation, and a dry finish.

D - This beer is hard to judge, it is not as dark in malt character as some other examples of the style and seems to lose some of its potential complexity as a result, but it is very well balanced and there is a smoothness to the flavor and to the yeast character in particular that speaks of careful bottle conditioning. The malt character is mostly layers of caramel with a hint of brown sugar and molasses and the yeast is mostly spicy notes rather than the dark fruit I expected. This works fairly well and does not become medicinally phenolic the way spicy yeast character often does in dark Belgian beer styles. In a way, it seems more like a very strong dubbel than a quad/dark strong. It is not the most interesting Quad that I have ever had, but it has a balance and poise that I would normally only expect from a beer made by a Belgian brewery and have almost never seen in an American brewed example of the style.

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Photo of BeerNemesis
4.42/5  rDev +8.3%
look: 4 | smell: 4.5 | taste: 4.5 | feel: 4 | overall: 4.5

Allagash FOUR | 750 ml. | 10.0% ABV | vintage

Brewer: Allagash Brewing Company (Maine)
Style: Quadrupel (Quad)
Glass: Chalice (Chimay)

Attractive matte black label with gold and white lettering.

Pristine reddish-amber with a big fluffy pillow of a head that never quite subsides fully. Fantastic lacing.

Dark fruits, raisins, caramel, belgian yeast.

Four contains four malts, four hops, four sugars, four Belgian yeast strains and is fermented four times. Coincidence? I think not. It is a wonderfully complex ale.

The four sugars include date sugar, light candi sugar, dark candi sugar and light golden molasses. Dates stand out, giving it an almost sweaty heft. The rest of the flavor profile mirrors the nose, with the addition of buttered dark rum, cherry pipe tobacco and sweetened orange peel. Alcohol feels like it's evaporating into my palate on the finish.

Soft and buttery, almost foamy. For such a complex beer, I wish it felt a bit heftier, but it's a minor point.

Complex, sweet, tempered and delightful.

Would I get it again?:
Yes. There are plenty of quads still to try, but it's earned it's place towards the top of my go-to list.

Batch 21
Bottled on: ?
Served on: July 18, 2010

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Photo of Pahn
2.81/5  rDev -31.1%
look: 4 | smell: 3 | taste: 2.5 | feel: 2.5 | overall: 3

On tap at the Stag's Head in NYC. Served in a snifter.

Appearance: 1/3 foamy white head left by the bartender dissipates quickly into a small froth around the surface of the glass. Color is a hazy reddish amber. Leaves lots of lacing everywhere.

Smell: Belgian yeast, brown sugar, a little raisin and plum. As it warms, some boozy and phenolic notes become dominant. Pretty boring for a quad.

Taste: Belgian yeast, a surprisingly large, offputting witbier flavor, banana, orange, and a hint of some of the expected dark fruit flavors. Mild welcome funk. It's a little sugary and hot. Some nice smoky flavors in the finish.

This beer is a weird mess. It almost starts to make sense every so often, and none of the flavors are really unpleasant (though they don't go together at all), but all in all it's a head scratcher. At first I thought it was just too cold, but I nursed the beer for about 45 minutes and it never stopped being a weird mix of clashing esters, bad watery mouthfeel, and only the mildest suggestion of deep quad flavors.

Mouthfeel: Too watery and thin. Somehow manages to be chalky and sticky while still being way too watery.

Drinkability: Wasted $9 on this. Would only have this on tap again if someone I trusted assured me it was good.

It seems I always have bad luck with big beers that develop depth in the bottle when I have them on tap. What I had today at the bar was awful, which particularly disappointed me because I've had Allagash Four before, and it's good in the bottle.

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Photo of GratefulBeerGuy
3.1/5  rDev -24%
look: 4 | smell: 4 | taste: 2.5 | feel: 4 | overall: 2.5

Batch #20

A clover-honey color with amber hues, solid haze and a rather lovely khaki colored 2" head and dissipates rapidly.

Dankly sweet fruity nose, wild strawberries, sour red grapes, sugar coated dates, pineapple with some heat tingle...zesty, sour candies and some citric acid.

A brew fermented four times should have some serious depth, and it does. It's very complex but the malt(S) simple goes over the edge, I simple do not care for the darker malt used which gives a smokey, buttery, heavy Old Ale-like feel and flavor that is just not right here. It's a shame becuase the rest of this brew is pretty nice, resinous fruits, sweet and tangy all-over with a balance of dry, herbal yeast and hops that brings out a strange but deep flavor spectrum. The feel is jazzy and crisp which is fine, but the malt proves to be to heavy and slick, cloying in fact. A bitter, medicinal and herbal yeast with vodka-esque heat runs a bit wild, the wood and brown sugar malt comes back with a sour-edge that i really don't care for in this style. The yeast cannot reach it's true potential with the dominating maltiness. Some slight metallic-sour yeastiness comes out later on adding to it's medicinal kick.

Complexity is high and if you like a big malty quad this will be to our likking, but it's off balance and rather strange to me. Sip, slow share with friends and maybe your closest enemy.

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Photo of rootbeerman
4.2/5  rDev +2.9%
look: 4 | smell: 4 | taste: 4.5 | feel: 4 | overall: 4

batch 18 into duvel tulip

A: pours light brown with a little hint of copper, very thin off white head.
S: sweet caramel malt, brown sugar, a bit of dark fruit.
T: sweet along with dark fruit a light earthy hop, caramel, a little bit of alcohol
M: smooth low carbonation coating
D: sippable, only because of the alcohol is noticeable

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Photo of drtth
4.3/5  rDev +5.4%
look: 4 | smell: 4 | taste: 4.5 | feel: 4 | overall: 4.5

Poured into a Duvel glass. Glass of cold water on the side to sip from periodically. This bottle is from Batch 18.

Appearance: As poured the beer is hazed russet brown or chestnut color with a 1/16" off-white head that quickly turns into an island of thin foam and a ring around the glass. Sipping leaves scattered patches of lacing. With this ABV the foam patch, ring, and lacing speckles are leaving the scene fairly early so that for most of the beer sipping leaves only a few spots on the side of the glass.

Smell: The aroma is filled with toffee/caramel and brown sugar. There also seem to be some dark fruit notes in here. While some alcohol is detectable it is very subtle, in the background, and recedes further as the beer warms.

Taste: The flavors are pretty much what is suggested by the nose. There is some toffee/caramel and brown sugar, with bits of dark fruit popping up now and then. While it is possible to taste some alcohol there is no burn and it is pretty well integrated with the whole. Interestingly I'd also swear I'm picking up some orange zest in this one as well.

Mouthfeel: The mouth feel is medium to full bodied with prickly subtle but refreshing carbonation. The finish is long and sweet up front but eventually leads to a slightly earthy dryness that prevents the beer from cloying and invites another sip.

Drinkability: This one is dangerously drinkable in that it is quite enjoyable and that the 10% ABV shows up mostly in its warming effects. It is also worth repeating because it is a very complex beer with lots of things going on that make it hard to pin down all the aromas and flavors as they come and go from sip to sip and as the beer warms. I'll definitely be revisiting this beer--a nice treat.

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Photo of billshmeinke
4.05/5  rDev -0.7%
look: 4 | smell: 4 | taste: 4 | feel: 4.5 | overall: 4

Poured into an Affligem chalice. Been sitting on this one for a few months now.

Dark ruby/caramel in color. One finger off white head that eventually dies down to a thick layer of foam on top. Fairly clear for a quad. Specs of lacing left on the sides of the glass.

Smells of dark fruits mostly. Plumbs, raisins, and granny smith apples. A hint of caramel and brown sugar.

Taste has green apples, plumbs, and raisins to a lesser extent some caramel, brown sugar, and toast. There is a bit of leafy hops as well.

Mouthfeel is on the high end of medium. Very well carbonated. Pretty creamy. Somewhat smooth with a decent bite on the end.

Drinkability is pretty nice. Interesting quad all around.

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Photo of bceagles39
4/5  rDev -2%
look: 4 | smell: 4 | taste: 4 | feel: 4 | overall: 4

Had on draft at the Great Lost Bear in Portland, Maine on May 2, 2010.

Dark brown color, not much head.

Smells super sweet (almost candy sweet) and malty. Taste the same. The heat of the alcohol is clearly there.

Full bodied, highly drinkable. A solid brew.

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Photo of berley31
4.23/5  rDev +3.7%
look: 4.5 | smell: 4 | taste: 4.5 | feel: 4 | overall: 4

A: Poured with a large, light tan, fizzy head that had good lasting power, finally settling down to 1-finger or so. Body is a deep amber color, and hazy.

S: Quite sweet; lots of dark fruit are the predominant scents. Hop aroma is low.

T: Slight hints of chocolate accompany the increasing flavor of dark fruits (plum, raisins). Slightly toasty. Quite sweet from the malt.

M: The alcohol is detectable, but it's not hot or solventy at all. Medium bodied, with high carbonation.

D: An excellent Belgian Strong Dark... doesn't taste muddled at all, which is surprising coming from such a complicated malt, hop, and yeast bill.

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Photo of TMoney2591
4.25/5  rDev +4.2%
look: 4 | smell: 4 | taste: 4.5 | feel: 4.5 | overall: 4

Served in a Chimay chalice.

"I've got a Nikkon camera; I love to take photographs..." That's right, I'm jammin' to some Paul Simon as I'm enjoyin' this quad. Though this brew may not have the greens of summer, it has an indescribable amount of shades of brown and red, earth tones galore; Mama, don't take my Kodachrome away, 'cause I wanna take a pic o' this lovely collection o' hues. Above the colors floats a scent mostly composed of sweetness: straight granulated sugars, some brown sugar, maybe even some candy sugar. A bit o' yeastiness makes itself known as well. All's I know is that this smell is as sweet as the punch (like the Association's narrator's empty cup...look it up...). It's not all sweet, though, as along comes Mary...in the form of miscellaneous grains (there was a hint in there for the prior reference...too subtle?). My tongue also finds some sweetness, but it is toned down a great degree compared to the nose. The grains lead you along now, not unlike Crispian St. Peters (you can always tell when my iTunes is on shuffle whilst I review). Only this pipe leads to a varied taste sensation that hides hints of banana, clove (ah, Belgium...), vanilla, and some o' that sugar that was so omnipresent in the nose. Though "four" was the theme during brewing, more than four flavors play together, riding down the highway that is life (damn you, Tom Cochrane, for making me force that reference!). Admittedly, I expected a more syrupy brew when I sniffed the surface. What I get instead is a nice, fairly effervescent, medium-bodied Belgian stew. And I mean that in as good a way as possible. I want more of this, but I'm sure this bomber will be more than enough after I've driven it all night long (once again, I ahake my fist at the aforementioned Mr. Chochrane...).

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Photo of 4000qtrap
4.12/5  rDev +1%
look: 4 | smell: 4.5 | taste: 4 | feel: 4 | overall: 4

Source:/Serving: Draft

Smell: Intense spicy pear and fresh apple cider, honey, caramel. A n underlying floral/earthy character is captivating and mysterious.

Taste: Sweet caramel malts with intense fresh pear and some lemon acidity meet up with slightly bitter plum skin. Melds into honey whose sweetness is slightly offset by carbonated bitterness and some spice reminiscent of black pepper and nutmeg. Spices are well integrated into the foundation of the beer - not distinct but very complex. Some yeastiness as it warms, too - but there is an odd bubble gum note that comes up too which was slightly unpleasant. Finish is fairly crisp, bready malts, a hint of alcohol and general fruitiness. Definitely not one of those super sweet quads and no sign of the ABV.

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Photo of alysmith4
3.74/5  rDev -8.3%
look: 3 | smell: 4 | taste: 4 | feel: 3 | overall: 3.5

Tried this beer last night with dinner. I don't think I paired it very well, would have been better on its own. At any rate, it poured a nice caramel color with a head that quickly disappeared. The smell was sweet.. of sugar, honey, grapefruit, peach, and maybe cinnamon. Taste was much like Unibroue's La Fin Du Monde.. almost an exact match! It was highly drinkable.. taste was of honey/sugar, caramel, raisin, clove, and had some "Belgain" spice to it. It changed somewhat as it warmed. It was good, I'd have it again.

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Photo of sprucetip
4.55/5  rDev +11.5%
look: 4.5 | smell: 4.5 | taste: 4.5 | feel: 4 | overall: 5

Batch 16, from notes. Finally getting around to reviewing this one.

Hazy, deep amber, but golden/orange when backlit. Light tan foam stays a while then leaves thick lacing early on. It is active, and lots of suspended yeast is visible when backlit.

Sweet malty, dark fruity, Belgian yeasty, and a bit of spice right out of the gate. Boozy esters and subtle floral hops emerge later. Maybe just a bit too hot for a 5...

Follows the nose. Rich sweet malty base blending with dark fruit and Belgian yeasty flavor is the platform upon which the more subtle elements are layered. Mellow alcohol, barely perceptible floral hops and a mile bitterness. Wicked smooth and tasty.

Plenty if not over carbonated. Rich, full, smooth, and clean. A bit of very mild bitterness, and a dryness in the finish that I hadn't yet noticed.

Rich, smooth, complex, and balanced. A deluxe, exquisite treat.

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Allagash Four from Allagash Brewing Company
Beer rating: 4.08 out of 5 with 997 ratings
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