Allagash James Bean | Allagash Brewing Company

BA SCORE
91
outstanding
518 Ratings
THE BROS
-
no score
Send samples
Allagash James BeanAllagash James Bean
BEER INFO

Brewed by:
Allagash Brewing Company
Maine, United States
allagash.com

Style: Belgian Strong Pale Ale

Alcohol by volume (ABV): 10.40%

Availability: Rotating

Notes / Commercial Description:
James Bean is a bourbon barrel aged, Belgian-style strong ale that is infused with cold press coffee, post fermentation. Coffee, vanilla and bourbon dominate the aroma. Flavors of caramel, coffee, bourbon, and oak present themselves throughout this full-bodied beer. The coffee used in James Bean is Speckled Ax, roasted right here in Maine. The beans used are Ethiopia Amaro Gayo and are known for their lush blackberry and blueberry fruit flavors.

Grains: Allagash 2-Row Malted Barley Blend
Hops: Tettnang and Hallertau
Spices/Other: White Cane Sugar, Cold-Brewed Coffee
Yeast: House
Original Gravity: 1.074, 18 degrees Plato

Added by jlindros on 07-09-2012

BEER STATS
Ratings:
518
Reviews:
65
Avg:
4.08
pDev:
8.82%
 
 
Wants:
38
Gots:
67
For Trade:
1
User Ratings & Reviews
Sort by:  Recent | High | Low | Top Raters
Ratings: 518 |  Reviews: 65
Photo of GarthDanielson
4.24/5  rDev +3.9%
look: 4 | smell: 4.25 | taste: 4.25 | feel: 4.25 | overall: 4.25

Poured on tap and served in a snifter, the beer is a bright, orange-gold coloring with a fluffy, white head. Aromas of berries, all spice, clove, nutmeg, banana, and a bready backbone. Flavors are solid and standard Belgian, with heavy bready and banana notes providing a solid backbone, supporting berry esters, a bevvy of spices, and roasted coffee at the end of the palate, with a bitter and roasted linger. Light, smooth body, with a fruitcake aftertaste. Smooth, light finish. Solid beer. Dynamic and damn tasty.

 517 characters

Photo of KGilmour
4.75/5  rDev +16.4%
look: 4.75 | smell: 4.75 | taste: 4.75 | feel: 4.75 | overall: 4.75

Photo of Futbolmanby
3.36/5  rDev -17.6%
look: 4 | smell: 3 | taste: 3.5 | feel: 3.5 | overall: 3.25

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

10/7/16 bottle

14 characters

Photo of jakea
3.99/5  rDev -2.2%
look: 3.75 | smell: 4 | taste: 4 | feel: 4 | overall: 4

Photo of thinwhiteduke
3.75/5  rDev -8.1%
look: 3.75 | smell: 3.75 | taste: 3.75 | feel: 3.75 | overall: 3.75

Photo of AMCimpi
4.28/5  rDev +4.9%
look: 4.25 | smell: 4.25 | taste: 4.25 | feel: 4.5 | overall: 4.25

Photo of pats3peat12
4/5  rDev -2%
look: 4 | smell: 4 | taste: 4 | feel: 4 | overall: 4

Photo of Daniellobo
4.49/5  rDev +10%
look: 4.25 | smell: 4.5 | taste: 4.5 | feel: 4.5 | overall: 4.5

Photo of hermit990
4.58/5  rDev +12.3%
look: 4.5 | smell: 4.5 | taste: 4.75 | feel: 4.25 | overall: 4.5

Photo of Zuidman
3.75/5  rDev -8.1%
look: 3.75 | smell: 3.75 | taste: 3.75 | feel: 3.75 | overall: 3.75

Photo of redfox405
4/5  rDev -2%
look: 4 | smell: 4 | taste: 4 | feel: 4 | overall: 4

Photo of deltatauhobbit
3.5/5  rDev -14.2%
look: 3.75 | smell: 3.75 | taste: 3.25 | feel: 3.75 | overall: 3.5

Pours a hazy golden amber color, it is very hazy so don't expect much clarity, very little head and no lacing on the glass.

Smell is an odd mix of sweet malt and a light coffee aroma, touches of wood hit the nose as well to add some complexity to the otherwise odd mixture of aromas.

Taste is similar to the aroma with the coffee and pale malt mixture, because it's a fairly light beer the coffee aspect just seems out of place (as opposed to it's natural presence in a porter or stout), I'm just not feeling that combination, the barrel aging is also quite strong since neither of the main aspects are durable enough to keep things balanced, strong carbonation keeps the mouthfeel light but there's a lack of dryness in the finish that would be welcoming.

This is such a weird beer, being a Belgian pale with such strong barrel aging compared to the flavors with a forced coffee presence that is either too weak to blend in or not strong enough to be the focal point.

 971 characters

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

Photo of tpeters
4.06/5  rDev -0.5%
look: 4 | smell: 4.25 | taste: 4 | feel: 4 | overall: 4

Photo of Mikexw
4.18/5  rDev +2.5%
look: 4 | smell: 4 | taste: 4.25 | feel: 4.25 | overall: 4.25

Photo of ryan1788a5
4.09/5  rDev +0.2%
look: 4 | smell: 4.25 | taste: 4 | feel: 4.25 | overall: 4

750ml bottle poured into an Allagash chalice.

A: Golden-Amber color with great clarity. Fine-bubbled white head settles after a time. Wispy lacing.

S: Malts bring light toast, pie crust and sugary graham cracker. Coffee is lightly roasty and nutty with a unique blackberry aroma. The barrel adds soft traces of bourbon and nuances of oaky vanillins, caramel chews, and toasted coconut, and even some chocolate. Surprisingly restrained, but in a good way. It's perfectly balanced and all the subtleties are able to pull through.

T: Graham cracker/pie crust malt base is the backbone, though the coffee drives most of the experience. The coffee addition is nutty, lightly roasty and smokey, but overwhelmingly berry-like. Very discreet tanginess. Spocy hop bitterness drops in middle to back, but stays out of the direct spotlight. Barrel plays a supporting role, displaying subtle bourbon, barrel toast, oaky vanillins, and a faint hint of toasty coconut. These flavors build only slightly and trail into the finish.

M: Medium bodied. Round and chewy. Carbonation tingles on the tongue and makes things airy in feel and provides lift.

O: The coffee beans used here are very unique, and the Belgian strong pale ale on which it rests is a rather unconventional choice of host as well. It's a far cry from the brash imperial stouts we usually see getting the coffee and bourbon barrel treatment. That said, it all works very well. Don't sleep on this as a dessert pairing either. I once attended an Allagash beer dinner where this was served alongside blueberry cobbler, and it remains one of the more memorable pairings I've experienced to date.

 1,648 characters

Photo of zotzot
3.75/5  rDev -8.1%
look: 3.75 | smell: 3.75 | taste: 3.75 | feel: 3.75 | overall: 3.75

Photo of shoegueuze
4.31/5  rDev +5.6%
look: 4 | smell: 4.25 | taste: 4.5 | feel: 4 | overall: 4.25

Photo of JakerLou
4.18/5  rDev +2.5%
look: 4.5 | smell: 4 | taste: 4.25 | feel: 4 | overall: 4.25

Photo of LauraGG
4.5/5  rDev +10.3%
look: 4 | smell: 4 | taste: 5 | feel: 4 | overall: 4.5

Photo of avalon07
3.85/5  rDev -5.6%
look: 4 | smell: 4 | taste: 3.75 | feel: 4 | overall: 3.75

L: Poured from a bottle to a tulip glass. Had a gold-orange color and a cloudy texture. There was an inch of foamy, fairly long-lasting head. Not a whole lot of lacing, though.

S: A nice aroma of coffee, fruit, yeast, and some spices.

T: Tasted of a bit of spicy Belgian yeast, vanilla, cloves, a good amount of the advertised coffee, some light fruit (apples), citrus (orange), a hint of oak, caramel, and honey. This is an uneven flavor, with a lot of coffee in the front, but a thin finish. Not quite as complex as it aspires to be, but a solid flavor.

F: A good shot of carbonation with a dry finish. Light-bodied.

O: Definitely one of the more uneven beers I've had from Allagash. Certainly not terrible, and an interesting idea for a tripel, but it's uneven in spots.

 778 characters

Photo of CTaleMan
4.44/5  rDev +8.8%
look: 4.5 | smell: 4.25 | taste: 4.5 | feel: 4.5 | overall: 4.5

Photo of YoungKurtis
3.74/5  rDev -8.3%
look: 3.5 | smell: 3.25 | taste: 4 | feel: 4 | overall: 3.75

Photo of Piglet_rulz_da_yard
4.09/5  rDev +0.2%
look: 3.75 | smell: 4 | taste: 4.25 | feel: 4 | overall: 4

Allagash James Bean from Allagash Brewing Company
4.08 out of 5 based on 518 ratings.
  • About Us

    Your go-to website for beer (since 1996), publishers of BeerAdvocate magazine (since 2006) and hosts of world-class beer events (since 2003). Respect Beer.
  • BeerAdvocate Microbrew Invitational

    Join us June 2-3, 2017 in Boston, Mass. for beer, cider, mead, kombucha and sake from over 70 small producers.

    Learn More
  • Subscribe to BeerAdvocate Magazine

    Support uncompromising beer advocacy and award-winning, independent journalism with a print subscription to BeerAdvocate magazine.

    Subscribe