Allagash 10th Anniversary Ale | Allagash Brewing Company

very good
66 Ratings
Allagash 10th Anniversary AleAllagash 10th Anniversary Ale

Brewed by:
Allagash Brewing Company
Maine, United States

Style: Witbier

Alcohol by volume (ABV): 10.00%

Availability: Limited (brewed once)

Notes / Commercial Description:
Tenth Anniversary Ale was a beer brewed to celebrate 10 years of brewing artisanal Belgian style ales. A unique interpretation of our flagship Allagash White, Tenth Anniversary is a blend of two different whites; a sweet batch (brewed in February, 2005) and a dry batch (brewed in March, 2005). By blending the two batches, an additional complexity is imparted. Further complexity, most notably expressed by the delicate vanilla notes, was gained by aging some of the beer in new oak barrels.

Added by Todd on 06-21-2005

This beer is retired; no longer brewed.

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Ratings: 66 |  Reviews: 56
Photo of Sammy
4.1/5  rDev -0.2%
look: 4 | smell: 4 | taste: 4 | feel: 4 | overall: 4.5

I am surprised that it is a derivative of the witbier. A most mellow of 10 beers, possibly relecting cellaring for a couple of years. Tasty ale, not complex but certainly easy drinking. Oaking gave it vanilla, its also slightly biased sweet. Pineapple, spices with corriander and clove and white pepper. Superior. Soft but above average mouthfeel. Suitable carbonation.

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Photo of brentk56
4.25/5  rDev +3.4%
look: 4.5 | smell: 4.5 | taste: 4.5 | feel: 4 | overall: 3.5

Appearance: Pours a cloudy golden color with a touch of peach; a massive head in the bottle and a couple of inches cap the liquid and leave nice lacing although the persistence was not great (of course, this does have a bit of age on it)

Smell: Massive aromatics with stone fruits (nectarine, apricot and pear) joined by bubblegum esters; spicy yeast, orsnge peel, coriander, white pepper and vanilla area also discernable

Taste: Starts out fruity, with the wheat base also in the profile but turns sweet and spicy by mid-palate, as the candi sugar, and peppery yeast elements take control; coriander and orange peel are also part of the mix; after the swallow, the sweet and spicy flavors continue to dominate into the lengthy finish

Mouthfeel: Medium body with moderate to low carbonation (despite the head) but leaves a prickly sensation on the tip and sides of the tongue; some warmth in the gullet

Drinkability: Lively flavors and quite complex, but ultimately a bit too sweet

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Photo of Phyl21ca
4.11/5  rDev 0%
look: 5 | smell: 4 | taste: 4 | feel: 3.5 | overall: 4.5

Bottle (courtesy of Secret Santa): Bottle was stored in my fridge and I pulled it out 45minutes before drinking. It opened with large pop and started to gush and I then poured quickly in my glass. Poured a hazy golden color ale with a huge foamy white head with perfect retention. Carbonation is just crazy, which is not necessarily a bad thing, and body is pretty much average. Aroma of wheat with some pepper, coriander and maybe a bit of cinnamon. Taste is also quite heavy on wheat with a nice spice mix. I couldn’t really detect any alcohol, which is great. Overall, this may lack a bit of complexity but great take on the style (Strong Belgian pale ale/Witbier).

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Photo of NeroFiddled
4.5/5  rDev +9.5%
look: 4.5 | smell: 4.5 | taste: 4.5 | feel: 4.5 | overall: 4.5

Although I'd heard stories of rocketing corks and gushing bottles, there were no problems at all with my bottle. The cork came out with a standard pop, and the beer remained in the neck of the bottle for several moments before it was poured. In fact, even the head that was produced was a little restrained for this type of beer. Still, it produced a majestic dollop of soft, slightly off-white froth atop a hazy golden and orange body once coaxed slightly; and it left some very nice splatters and drips of lace throughout the entire goblet.

The nose offered a wonderful note of coriander amidst dried fruits and slightly sweet, candyish (bubblegum phenolic) malts. Some pepper, a transient note of delicate citrus, and some mild grassy character give it depth of character.

The mouthfeel was appropriately zesty and prickly on the tongue, followed by a more airy feel as the CO2 was released.

The flavor was initially sweet with wheatish malt and a fruitiness that was just slightly tart (dried apricots, tangerines, apple, pear). It rounded nicely with a rub of candyish/bubblemgum phenolics as a formidable pepperiness stepped in to take control and sweep the palate dry. The alcohol is well-cloaked, although it's slightly noticeable in the finish (which should be expected to a certain extent in any beer of 10%).

It's big and brash, reminiscent of the first large drop of a rollercoaster. Unfortunately, there aren't too many good, quick twists and turns after that... it's more about the assault of the big plunge. However, I think just a short bit of aging might help with that.

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Photo of Rifugium
4.09/5  rDev -0.5%
look: 4.25 | smell: 4 | taste: 4 | feel: 4.25 | overall: 4.25

Photo of BuckeyeNation
4.57/5  rDev +11.2%
look: 4 | smell: 4.5 | taste: 4.5 | feel: 4.5 | overall: 5

Riotously carbonated orange blossom honey. I must have been stunned by the loud craaack! on cork removal because I just did manage to get the open bottle over the chalice in time to catch the quickly rising foam. The eggshell-colored cap is massive and airy, but it isn't as creamy or as sticky as I prefer. As a result, there's very little lace. It's odd to see a two finger head on the beer that's still in the bottle.

I don't know whether or not the high ABV is responsible for what I'm smelling, but 10th Anniversary Ale's aroma is more BSPA to me than witbier. Maybe it's the fact that orange peel isn't as evident as it could be. That isn't to say that I don't love it. It's bursting golden fruity (apricots, peaches, apples) and is clove and coriander spicy. Complex and inviting. In fact, it's inviting me to take a sip right now.

This is delicious beer, just as I knew it would be. As to whether or not it's as outstanding as Allagash White, I'll reserve judgement until I've downed the majority of the bottle. Early signs point to... yes. Like the nose, the flavor is more in line with the Belgian Strong Pale Ale style than the stated style. On second thought, it strikes me as a combination of the two.

The website states that this 10th Anniversary beer is a mixture of two versions of the standard White; a sweeter version and a drier version. The brewers' object was to add complexity and I'd have to say that they've succeeded admirably. The beer is neither sweet nor dry. Actually, that's not quite right. It's both sweet and dry at different points along the flavor arc.

This is one of those kaleidoscopic beers that change in fascinating ways from the start of each mouthful to the finish, and also from the first few cooler sips to the last few less cool ones (I'm guessing). I'm finding it hard to get my taste buds around the stunning amount of complexity and am drinking the beer pretty quickly to try to sort it all out. If I don't slow down, I won't be able to finish this review with any sort of coherence at all.

When I read that *some* of the beer was aged in new oak barrels I was skeptical that there would be much of any flavor transfer. And, in fact, I don't appreciate much oakiness at all. I certainly don't appreciate the 'delicate vanilla notes' that the brewery suggests are present. Now if charred oak barrels had been used... different story altogether.

The flavor profile is rife with orchard fruit macerated in eau de vie and sprinkled with warm, exotic spices. I don't appreciate orange peel per se, but there is a citrusiness that most BSPAs don't possess. Sorry to keep flipping back and forth between styles, but that's what I'm tasting. Alcohol adds power and seriousness. This is not a beer for the dilettante, but for those who are capable of appreciating it for the masterpiece that it is.

The body/mouthfeel is everything I look for in this style. It's similar to the best Belgians in that it's paradoxically full and light at the same time. The only way to achieve this combination of mouthfilling volume, silky smoothness, light stickiness and airy drinkability is with a great deal of carbonation that is well-buried enough to avoid fizziness. Mission accomplished.

Allagash 10th Anniversary Ale is remarkable beer. I don't really care if it's a witbier-like BSPA or a BSPA-like witbier when it tastes this good. Any brewery that is capable of creating such jaw-droppingly amazing beer as Allagash White, Allagash Tripel Reserve, Allagash Grand Cru, and now, Allagash 10th Anniversary Ale, gets my vote as the single best Belgian-style brewery in America. And one of the best breweries period.

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Photo of Jason
4.17/5  rDev +1.5%
look: 4 | smell: 4.5 | taste: 4 | feel: 4.5 | overall: 4

750ml magnum, no freshness date but this was brewed back in Feb 2005.

A- As soon as I popped the cork the beer started to slowly gush so some sediment did make its way into the glass ... the beer was pretty damn bright in the bottle. Dusty golden hue with a very lively carbonation which holds the three fingered head tall.

S- Apple juice, star fruit and melon like aroma. Definite coriander and faded orange peel. Spicy alcohol and yeast in the back. Very aromatic.

T&M- Thick layer of dry malt character, suggestions of toasted crackers and horse feed grain. Fluffy, almost champagne-like crispness. Bitter orange peel with a soft coriander in the back. Clean warming alcohol only leaves a faded fingerprint of dried apples. Bone dry palate with a very clean finish.

D- Pair this with a hearty meal or share it with friends in celebration ... either way this beer is almost too complex for its own good. It makes you think what beer can be ... that is for sure.

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Photo of imperialking
3/5  rDev -27%

Photo of jwc215
3.7/5  rDev -10%
look: 4 | smell: 4 | taste: 3.5 | feel: 4 | overall: 3.5

Cage-corked 750 ml bottle, served cold as per instructions on the tag:

Pours golden with champagne-like bubbles rushing to the top, creating a thick foamy head that slowly descends to a thin, lasting cover. Some trailing lace slides down the glass.

The smell is of bready yeast, coriander, clove and a hint of orange peel.

Very spicy taste - coriander, clove, orange peel - Coriander quite hefty, so along with alcohol - this one has quite a bit of black pepper in the taste. Grainy sweet malt is behind the strong spiciness. Very dry finish.

Light bodied and effervescent, it has a lingering spiciness along with heat from the alcohol.

I do recall liking the 11th Anniversary better, but this one isn't bad at all. It's a bit heavy in flavor for a witbier, which is fine. But, it's a bit too spicy/black pepperish for me to say that I would want to see it as a regular offering, which it isn't anyway. Bottom line - I have mixed feelings about it after having a tasting of it when it came out, and after having the whole bottle after a year of aging.

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Photo of WesWes
4.12/5  rDev +0.2%
look: 4 | smell: 4.5 | taste: 4 | feel: 4 | overall: 4

The beer pours a nice gold color with a thick frothy white head that slowly fades to lacing. The aroma is great. It has a wonderful wheat malt scent along a refreshingly fruity yeast aroma. There appears to be some coriander and orange peel. It has an elevated abv., but the aroma hides the warmth well. The taste is good. It has a smooth wheat flavor that goes down easy. The spices add a bit of complexity, but there is no hiding the warmth in the taste. It warms all the way down. This is the new flavor of the week, I guess. Although, this is a tastey beer. I prefer the lower alcohol wits. The mouthfeel is fine. It is a full bodied beer with adequate carbonation. This is a fitting brew for their 10th Anv.. It makes a statement about what they've done in the past, but more importantly it opens the door for new possibilites in the future.

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Photo of Gueuzedude
4.12/5  rDev +0.2%
look: 4 | smell: 4.5 | taste: 4.5 | feel: 3 | overall: 3.5

Sampled February 2006
Pours a hazy, orangish-gold color, which is topped by a frothy, pale, tan colored head that is held up by an explosive carbonation. The bottle foamed up immediately and I lost a bit to the counter. The aroma smells characteristically like a wit; a mix of orange, citrus-like coriander, plus some earthy spice notes as well. As I delve deeper I get a strong note that reminds me of cinnamon, which really is quite strong if you spend some time intently smelling the aromatics.

The taste is much sweeter and thicker than I was expecting, which upon reflection makes sense given the strength of this beer. It finishes quite dry though, with an astringent spiciness and a yeasty bite, which definitely preps you for another sip of this brew. After my palate adjusts to the beer it does not seem nearly as sweet nor heavy as at the first sip. The spices found in the aroma are not nearly as evident in the taste; there are soft notes of citrus, some earthy coriander notes (especially towards the end), and perhaps a hint of that spicy cinnamon note. In the taste though the cinnamon note takes on more of the spicy flavor as opposed to the sweet flavor that is associated with cinnamon (makes me wonder if there is any cinnamon, perhaps it is just fermentation by-products). There are some definite yeasty, almost bread-like notes here as well. Plus there is also lots of fermentation derived spicy notes here.

As much as I like Wit beers, I am starting to get the impression that they really just don't double very well. The flavors really work best when kept in the lower alcohol, refreshing type that is a regular Wit. Having said that this beer is quite enjoyable, an tasty to boot.

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Photo of waddellc2
3.5/5  rDev -14.8%
look: 3.5 | smell: 3.5 | taste: 3.5 | feel: 3.5 | overall: 3.5

Photo of jdhilt
4.6/5  rDev +11.9%
look: 4.5 | smell: 4.5 | taste: 4.5 | feel: 4.5 | overall: 5

Explodes out of the bottle, pours with a three-finger off-white head that fades slowly leaving some lace. Cloudy amber color. Medium bodied and medium carbonation. Nose is orange peel. Complex flavor, on the sweet side some citrus but not bitter, the high ABV is not noticable, one of the best wits I have had - expensive $12.99 for a 750ml bottle from Downeast beverage Portland, Me.

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Photo of weeare138
3.93/5  rDev -4.4%
look: 4.5 | smell: 4 | taste: 4 | feel: 4 | overall: 3.5

Appears a light gold with steady streams of carbonation and a 1 finger white head.
Smell is of lush orange peel, crisp wheat, and a hint of coriander.
Taste is of lots of orange peel, wheat, with a bit of spice on the finish.
Mouthfeel is smooth with a warming alcohol presence.
Drinkability is ok. That 10% is definitley there and it creeps but I wouldn't let that take too much away from this good brew.

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Photo of corby112
3.97/5  rDev -3.4%
look: 3.5 | smell: 4 | taste: 4 | feel: 4 | overall: 4

750ml shared with shadowane and sideshowe.

Pours a bright golden orange color with a half finger white head that quickly fades.  Not much in the way of lacing.

Complex aroma with a good balance of candy sugar, citrus fruit and zesty spice.  Lots of orange and tangerine candy sweetness that's countered by spicy hints of pepper and coriander.

Medium bodied with a decent amount of zesty spice and sweet citrus fruit.  Still pleasantly carbonated with lots of zesty spice up front.  Hints of pepper coriander followed by tangerine, orange and peaches and cream.  There's also a subtle bubblegum presence that falls off toward the finish. Abv excellently masked making this beer dangerously drinkable. This beer has held up surprisingly well.

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Photo of akorsak
4.1/5  rDev -0.2%
look: 4 | smell: 4 | taste: 4 | feel: 4 | overall: 4.5

I am drinking a 750 mL C&C bottle, poured into the Chimay goblet. The ale is slightly cooler than room temperature.

Appearance: The cork popped with a decent noise, followed by an overflow from the bottle onto the countertop. The ale, when settled, is a clear, dehydrated-urine color (very yellowy). It is slightly hazy with no visible particles. It poured with decent head and left no lace.

Smell: The smell of orange wafts from the goblet. It mixes with other spices (coriander, pepper) to give a pleasing aroma. There is no appreciable hop or malt aroma.

Taste: Lemon zest and orange dominate the taste, which is light and airy. The carbonation cleanses the tongue, allowing the taste to re-appear fresh with the next sip.

Mouthfeel: The light sweetness and carbonation conspire to make a very pleasant beer. It sits well on the palate and makes the drinker want another sip.

Drinkability: Very high, even with the 10% abv. As this was a one-off production, grab one if you can find it.

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Photo of ppoitras
4.68/5  rDev +13.9%
look: 5 | smell: 4.5 | taste: 4.5 | feel: 5 | overall: 5

750ml bottle purchased as a single somewhere in NoVA, either WF/Vienna, WF/Annadale, Norm's, or Rick's. Corked and caged.

Poured into a Rapscallion glass, formed a 1 1/2" bright white head over the slightly cloudy dark golden brew. Head lasts very nicely, with a constant swirl of small bubbles constantly rejuvenating, and lacing is delicate yet plentiful. Aroma is spicy malts, enticingly so. Taste is sweet maltiness upfront, perhaps a bit too much but just barely across the line, and then the spicing kicks in and tickles and tantalizes the tongue, and closes dry, with the slightest of warming. Mouthfeel is fluffy and silky at once, just shimmies over the gums seductively, and drinkability is superb. Not sure where this 10%abv is hiding, but its definitely a neat trick. Highly recommended.

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Photo of lordofthewiens
4.27/5  rDev +3.9%
look: 3.5 | smell: 4 | taste: 4.5 | feel: 4 | overall: 4.5

The beer was a slightly hazy orange color, with a medium-sized head. It had a sweet, fruity odor, along with some spice. It tasted sweet, citrus, with some nice warming spiciness. Maybe just a touch too sweet. It was a smooth beer, very drinkable. Another good beer from Allagash.

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5/5  rDev +21.7%

Photo of Dogbrick
4.2/5  rDev +2.2%
look: 4 | smell: 4 | taste: 4.5 | feel: 4 | overall: 4

Acquired via trade. Pale and hazy yellow-gold color with a very thick white head and spotty lacing. Aroma of yeast, lemon and spices. Medium-bodied and I like the amped-up Allagash White interpretation. Floral character with lots of sweet spices, citrus and yeast. The alcohol is always in the background too. The finish is dry and lightly bitter with a bit of toasted malt. Impressive.

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Photo of francisweizen
4/5  rDev -2.7%
look: 4 | smell: 4 | taste: 4 | feel: 4 | overall: 4

Allagash 10th anniversary is a lovely rusty golden colour with a big poofy head of snow white foam. The aromas are very ramped up wit spices (curacao, orange peel, coriander, white pepper, et al) as well as a zingy lemony touch and some yeast goodness. The taste is very wheaty and yeast, but WAY too sweet for my liking. It' still solid and good though. The spicy/fruity complexities are lost in the sweetness though. Mouthfeel is filling and dryed out yet light enough especially for a bigger (10%abv) brew. Drinkability is good but again it is hurt due to the constant sweetness. This one could have been a champion of the style if they held back on the sweetness and tossed in some more farmy farmhouse funk characteristics...Still as it stand, a nice new brew from Allagash for all you BAs with a sweet tooth...

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Photo of alexgash
4.35/5  rDev +5.8%
look: 4.5 | smell: 4.5 | taste: 4.5 | feel: 4 | overall: 4

An excellently-chosen wedding gift from chaduvel et al. Heeding the neck-hanging label, I stored in the refrigerator for 12 hours and opened cold. It still managed to erupt a bit, but I only lost perhaps an ounce. With the gushing under control, the 10th Anniversary pours a gorgeously hazy pale peach to medium gold. Foamy, tight-bubbled, off-white head that sticks to the glass religiously. Nose is very fruity: bananas, pineapple (especially pineapple), grape juice, some spice, and a little yeast for good measure. Inviting. Taste starts out with tangy-sweet fruits (pineapple again), fruit cocktail juice as well. I get a little straw/funk and some pepper mid-palate. Intense carbonation lifts the first wave of flavor off the tongue to reveal a stickier, candy sweet base and a vegetal, slightly spicy bitterness. Finish is dry with echoes of overripe fruit. Medium bodied with crazy lively carbonation. Gets a little stickier in the end. Let this one warm up a little after opening. Happy 10th Allagash!

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Photo of dsa7783
4.38/5  rDev +6.6%
look: 4.5 | smell: 4 | taste: 4.5 | feel: 4.5 | overall: 4.5

750 ML bottle recently copped from Super Saver in Somerville for $13.99... I was surprised to see this one on the shelves still...
Overall, I would basically describe this in the most simplest of terms as a "super Witbier" - big on taste, flavor, and alcohol, and very fruity and tasty like a sweet Tripel...
A gradual pour resulted in a hazy, golden, light-amber colored-hue, with intesne carbonation visible along with a giant, five-fingered head that exhibited tremendous staying power...
Classic, rich Witbier aroma of coriander, spices, lemons, citrus and such...
Taste strongly complemented the smell, with a burst of citrus, oranges, nectarines, tangerines, cloves, and coriander with mixed spices...
Superb, creamy, thick, filling mouthfeel with an ultra-easy level of drinkability for a 10% ABV - the alcohol really struggles to make itself noticed on this one...
Great stuff from Allagash - I actually enjoyed this one slightly more than their 11th Anniversary one...

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Photo of merlin48
4.2/5  rDev +2.2%
look: 4 | smell: 4 | taste: 4.5 | feel: 4 | overall: 4

Corked and caged bomber,courtesy of mntlover who brought this to our tasting session on 1-18-2006. Cork comes off with a loud pop, followed by lots of gunsmoke, then a massive foamover. Wow! This one is a "gusher". Honey amber body in the tulip glass with a mild haze. Spotty patch lacing is abundant.
Aroma is fruity sweet, with apricots and honeydew melon subduing the nose. Clove and coriander are also prominent, along with a subtle earthy yeastiness.
Mouthfeel is medium bodied with a soft and smooth carbonation.
Taste is fruitier than any Allagash I've ever tried. Honeydew melon stands out. Orangepeel adds a nice bittersweet note. Coriander and white pepper add a spicy zing. Hops and yeast are subtle, adding an earthy bitterness.
A solid Belgian style, typical of Allagash quality. Sweeter and fruitier than any other brew that I've tried from this Maine brewery. A 10% witbier? The alcohol is well hidden, for sure, but this is certainly not your standard wit. Very enjoyable, nonetheless.

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Photo of koopa
4/5  rDev -2.7%
look: 4 | smell: 4 | taste: 4 | feel: 4 | overall: 4

Appearance: glowing orange body with honey folds and a huge 3 finger slightly off white crown...this one gushed! Some retention and minimal lace.

Smell: candied orange, wheat, coriander, and a touch of alcohol.

Taste: Wheat and candied orange throughout with some hop bitterness sneaking in at the end.

Mouthfeel: Medium bodied and chewy with just enough carbonation on the finish.

Drinkability: Not bad considering the strength.

This one held up fairly well considering its a double wit that has 4+ years on it.

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Allagash 10th Anniversary Ale from Allagash Brewing Company
4.11 out of 5 based on 66 ratings.
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