Gnomegang | Brewery Ommegang

452 Reviews

Brewed by:
Brewery Ommegang
New York, United States

Style: Belgian Strong Pale Ale

Alcohol by volume (ABV): 9.50%

Availability: Rotating

Notes / Commercial Description:
Malts: Pilsner, Carapils, Flaked Oats, flaked Red Wheat, Special B
Hops: two Saaz varieties, 3 additions
Spices: none
Sugar: yes
Yeast: Chouffe yeast in primary fermentation, Ommegang yeast in bottle conditioning
OG: 19.9 o Plato
FG: 2.9 o Plato
IBU: 26

Added by BeerAdvocate on 01-10-2011

For Trade:
User Reviews
Sort by:  Recent | High | Low | Top Raters | Alström Bros
Reviews: 452 | Ratings: 1,557
Photo of ppoitras
4.5/5  rDev +10%
look: 4 | smell: 4 | taste: 4.5 | feel: 5 | overall: 5

22oz bottle purchased at Table & Vine, West Springfield, MA. Corked and caged.

Poured into a Chimay chalice, formed a 1/2" eggshell head over the cloudy amber brew. Head lasts okay, with thick coating lace. Aroma is sweet wheat, with a touch of funk.

Taste begins deeply sweet, cloves in the middle, with a fruitiness peeking in, and closes quietly with lingering of the same flavors. Alcohol warmth comes on as well. Mouthfeel is wow smooth, and drinkability is very easy, esp for the abv. Very nice brew.

 510 characters

Photo of micromaniac129
4/5  rDev -2.2%
look: 4 | smell: 4 | taste: 4 | feel: 4 | overall: 4

Golen straw colored beer maybe a bit darker.
Exceptionally well carbonated helping to boost up a tall and loose structured foamy white head.

Aroma is that of rich malts and Beligum yeast. Hops have a spicy bit but are restained.

With 5 different malts and 2 noble hops and 2 yeast strains this beer difinitly has a complex taste but yet similar. The malts greet your taste buddies with a fruity sweetness and hops have a restrained floral to earthy taste.
There is sutle spiciness and fruity esters.

Mouthfeel is medium and the beer slides around smoothly. A dry finish with soft alcohol warming at the aftertaste.

A good beer from two outstanding breweries but the alcohol and price could act as a deterent for some.

 722 characters

Photo of KTCamm
4.05/5  rDev -1%
look: 4 | smell: 4 | taste: 4 | feel: 4.5 | overall: 4

Ommegang champagne bottle poured into a Duvel glass.

Pours cloudy light copper with an inch of white foam. Residual lacing grips the sides of the glass. Belgian yeast smell. Taste is smooth, light sugar blended with an even hop. Very mild and even. Some honey taste, and dark fruit. Very good.

 294 characters

Photo of BeerMaverick
4.12/5  rDev +0.7%
look: 4 | smell: 4.5 | taste: 4 | feel: 4 | overall: 4

A - Opaque golden color with some sediment residual. A half inch of white head with poor retention. Lots of carbonation as depicted by the multitude of bubbles rising to the surface. Interested choice of

S - Floral natural aromas typical of a good belgian pale ale. Some woody hints as well from the belgian yeast.

T - The natural and earthy taste that is so prevalent in this style is complemented by a malty and yeasty background with slight hop notes. The yeast strain is typical of Belgium thanks to Brasserie D'Achouffe who designed this beer in collaboration with Ommegang.

M - A citrusy hop aftertaste is aided by the dominant yeasty character. No alcohol detected. Medium-bodied brew.

O - Remarkable representation of a Belgian Pale Ale as is typical of Ommegang! Great brew that is worth trying if you are in to those yeasty and spicy Belgians.

 858 characters

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

a blend of wonderful caramel, brisk feel and subtle husky adjunct. Corn hints to a bubble golden pour. Nose of brie and hay. Palate a tad on the sweet side. I wouldn't have this in a bottle due to fear of a dominating protein husk candy that blends well but your make for a cardboard feel if it sat around too long. Great little brew... Early autumn feel. Mild floral linger.

 375 characters

Photo of SkeeterHawk
3.77/5  rDev -7.8%
look: 3 | smell: 3.5 | taste: 4 | feel: 3.5 | overall: 4

This is a new offering for me from Ommegang, and I like D'Achouffe as well, so this should be interesting. I picked this beer up at the Spring Cypress and 249 Spec's. Let's see what this one has to offer:

Appearance: Amazingly pours with almost no head though there was head-pressure on the cork. Interesting. There are quite a few bubbles rising, though they don't stick once they get to the top. The beer itself is a pretty hazy yellow gold. The few bubbles that collect on the side of the glass are white and very fizzy as you can tell they have no intention of sticking around.

Aroma: I get lots of Belgian yeast character that is quite bread dough like. The yeast is mixed with a secondary hop character that is pretty earthy for the style. There are some floral notes to the hops, and the malt gives a subtle wheat and sweet crystal malt, but that is about it. The yeast is the bigger player in this beer.

Taste: The flavor is pretty much in line with the aroma except that the yeast isn't as huge of a player as the aroma suggested. It is still a very large contributor to the flavor profile, but the hops and alcohol are coming out a lot more than in the aroma and is pushing this beer over almost to the Tripel category. The body is medium to a little light with carbonation present on the tongue, but not doing much for the overall drinkability of the beer. There are some more fruity notes coming out as the beer warms. There is peaches, maybe some green apples and pears, and who knows what else? The finish is balanced toward the sweetness with some subtle light toasty caramel to linger with the hops and bread-dough for quite some time after the sip.

Opinion: Overall this is a pretty decent beer. It is a little yeasty for my taste, but I feel that this will mellow with age. The hops are such that they would probably be conducive to to the aging as well. I would venture to guess that this beer would be ready in about 18 months or so of cold aging. At that point, hopefully the yeast will settle and the hops and alcohol would co-exist a bit better to make this beer more drinkable. As it is, it tastes young, so it really isn't all that enjoyable.

 2,171 characters

Photo of pmlondrigan
4.08/5  rDev -0.2%
look: 4 | smell: 3.5 | taste: 4 | feel: 5 | overall: 4.5

Didn't know what to expect here. Nice pour, honey gold color rests under a two finger white rocky head. Belgian lacing, check. Head retention, less of a check. Aroma, well its weak. A little spicy, a little banana, and a suggestion of belgian candi sugar. The taste is clean, crisp. There are flavors of clove, banana, and spicy belgian yeast. A very clean pils malt, not much in the way of hops. Very esters are present, some green apple too. To think this is almost 10%, can't be but it is. A really well crafted, but simple beer. This makes it all the more impressive. These simple ales are tough to pull off well, and this one is a winner.

 643 characters

Photo of mynie
4.7/5  rDev +14.9%
look: 4.5 | smell: 4.5 | taste: 5 | feel: 4.5 | overall: 4.5

There's way too many brewery crossovers these days. At first, it was the The Jetsons Meet the Flintstones. Sure, it was cheap. But you loved both of those things and couldn't help but give them a chance. But lately, man. It's hard to work up any enthusiasm for the Boddington's/Magic Hat collaboration.

So we're dealing with something that is rarely, cheaply interesting and usually just a sad marketing ploy. How, then, does it work.

Well, when two brewers are complimentary, maybe? Like when the Floyds' hops mixed up with Sun Kings unparalleled yeastmanship. Or here, when the two Kings of dry, earthy Belgian-style beers get together to try and out dry earth one another.

This, ladies and gentlemen, is one hell of a Belgian Blonde. Like, the best BB I've ever had that wasn't brewed by De Dolle.

I'm so tired of listing the same handful of descriptors for each beer. (This tastes spicy, sweet, and a little bit hoppy) If you've had a strong BPA, you know the basic formula. Only, wow, it don't usually come together like this. The sweetness starts things off, then it gets so nice and spicy in the middle that burns--but it burns like peppers, not like alcohol--and then that fades slowly away and leaves a taste of tangy honey upon your tongue, and the whole time the beer's as thick as silk.

 1,303 characters

Photo of WVbeergeek
4.35/5  rDev +6.4%
look: 4 | smell: 4 | taste: 4.5 | feel: 4.5 | overall: 4.5

Appears a pale golden slightly clouded Belgian ale here, this is pretty much the best American brewed Belgian ale around owned by Belgians tagged teaming with the La Chouffe folks to creat Gnomegang. Started by beer enthusiasts I basically love Ommegang. Head is fluffy white with fine, you guessed it Belgian style lacing. Aroma is spicy citric with hints of tropical fruit a very pleasant aromatic experience as a whole. Hints of pineapple and apricot very enticing with each sniff or use it as a reduction in your next sauce creation at home in the culinary kitchen. Effervescent body sent by the beer gods above, in truth well executed Belgian style ale I can't wait for the next Steel City Big Pour the only event that Ommegang attends in the Burgh currently.

 764 characters

Photo of mikereaser
3.58/5  rDev -12.5%
look: 4 | smell: 3.5 | taste: 3.5 | feel: 4 | overall: 3.5

A - Pours a cloudy light orange color with 3 inches of white fluffy foam that is taking its time receding. There is some decent lacing down the glass as it falls

S - light grain along with a good amount of corriander and lemon zest. I seem to be picking up some belgian yeast spiciness as well

T - Thats a weird flavor. Alot of the yeast spiciness upfront then alot of banana in the middle finishing with a big kick of those spices again. The flavor is really strong and I'm not sure if I like it or not. It seems to stick around for awhile and it mellows nicely

M - medium bodied leaning toward heavy with some lively carbonation. Its crisp and zippy on the tongue and finishes dry although the spiciness sticks around for awhile.

D - Not bad flavor, though i'm not sure If i'd want more than a glass full.


 828 characters

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

Bottle from Perry's Liquor in Livermore, CA.

A - Poured a hazy yellow color with an off white head that leaves lacing behind

S - Is of spiced Belgian yeast with hints of fruit

T - Like the smell starts of with the spicy Belgian yeast then some fruit flavors come out a little sweet

M - This beer has a light body with high carbonation to it

O - This is a very enjoyable beer from two breweries that I like there's better beers out there from both of them but they came together to make a good tasting beer that's worth trying if you see it around

 552 characters

Photo of Spineypanda
4.18/5  rDev +2.2%
look: 4.5 | smell: 4 | taste: 4.5 | feel: 3.5 | overall: 4

Pours a pale golden in color with a good but not long lasting head for what it is.
Smell is quite sharp, with the typical yeastiness but some almost acidic notes I cannot quite pinpoint to a fruit.
Taste is refreshing! A bit of an alcohol kick but it works well, and a good punch of what I would have to guess is granny smith apples...may be wrong.
Aftertaste is strongly banana.

Great beer!

 392 characters

Photo of ngeunit1
4.35/5  rDev +6.4%
look: 4.5 | smell: 4.5 | taste: 4.5 | feel: 4 | overall: 4

A - The beer pours a really nice slightly cloudy golden-orange color with a finger of frothy white head atop. The head fades down slowly to a thin layer leaving behind some nice lacing.

S - The aroma is a mix of fairly strong yeast and fruit/citrus esters. There is also some nice malt and spices present as well.

T - Starts off with lots of yeast flavor and some light fruit and citrus flavors. Through the middle some banana flavor comes through alongside some stronger spices as well. The finish is a mix of banana, malt, and some spices that linger really nicely.

M - Medium-full bodied with moderate lively carbonation. The beer feels really crisp and smooth. The finish is a nice mix of sweet fruit flavors and spices.

D - Very drinkable. The beer feels nice and complex and balanced from start to end. The 9.5% abv here is also pretty much hidden. The mix of fruits, spices, and yeast is really nice here.

 917 characters

Photo of BeerNemesis
3.98/5  rDev -2.7%
look: 4.5 | smell: 4 | taste: 4 | feel: 3.5 | overall: 4

Gnomegang | 750 ml. | 9.5% ABV | 2011

Brewer: Brewery Ommegang
Style: Belgian Strong Pale Ale (BSPA)
Glass: Ommegang chalice

Radiant honey-orange body, lackluster head and lacing. I would have given this a perfect score because the color is so beautiful under light, but the head and lacing really detract from it.

The alluring scent of tropical fruit wafts above the surface. Citrus and spices are also there.

An intense spicy character permeates the first sip, dry and crisp. But then I'm shocked by the wave of juicy tropical fruits and citrus that rushes in to fill the gustatory chasm. The finish is full of pepper, coriander, and it's oh so dry, grassy, and arresting.

It comes across as thin but very crisp. The carbonation is fierce, and the pepper singes the tongue. Mouthfeel is not its strong suit.

Overall, I am impressed by the intensity of flavor, if not the breadth of the experiene. The emphasis is on spicy, grassy flavors over the tropical fruit found in the nose. I tend to enjoy sweeter drinks by themselves and drier, spicier ones, like Gnomegang, with food.

Would I get it again?:
Yes, but there are many formidable competitors in the BSPA genre, that I like better.

Bottled: ?
Served: June 4, 2011

Price = $9.99 at the Whole Foods (NYC)

 1,324 characters

Photo of twiggamortis420
3.97/5  rDev -2.9%
look: 3.5 | smell: 4 | taste: 4 | feel: 4 | overall: 4

750 mL bottle courtesy of brees6221, thanks Ben! Pours a hazed gold color with a large-bubbled white head. Fades pretty fast and does not leave much lacing.

Nose is juicy tropical hops and a nice fruit-laden yeast aroma. Little bit chalky and the malts are light and grainy.

Taste throws off lots of yeast, bready and fruity. Alcohol is big and dry with a light hop bitterness on the finish. Hop flavor shows up a bit, herbal and leafy. Mouthfeel is soft and almost manages to be creamy - finely bubbled. Even though both breweries yeasts were used, I think the 'Chouffe is more distinctive and noticeable. Pretty smooth and drinks easier than a 9.5 BSPA should. Not a bad collab here, worthy of a test drive.

 711 characters

Photo of xnicknj
3.5/5  rDev -14.4%
look: 3.5 | smell: 3.5 | taste: 3.5 | feel: 3.5 | overall: 3.5

750mL bottle poured into snifter - thanks to phan869 for sharing

Pours a slightly hazed golden color with some bright yellow tones. A fluff of white head bubbles up, retains for a bit with some cloudy film and splotchy lacing.

Plenty of spice and fragrance in the nose, biscuit malt and dough, slight alcohol, fruit sweetness with raisin.

Floral hops and spice up front, followed by some tempering sweetness. Raisin and pear with some herbal hop qualities. Biscuit malts with some more sweet tones mix with a fairly boozy edge towards the finish.

Full medium body, higher carbonation, tingly and dry on the tongue. This reminds me of La Chouffe a bit, it drinks pretty well but I wasn't too into it.

 706 characters

Photo of SubpoenaDeuces
4.17/5  rDev +2%
look: 4 | smell: 4.5 | taste: 4 | feel: 4.5 | overall: 4

Gnomegang 9.5% ABV, Belgian Strong Ale

A: Hazy yellow with lots of wheat particulates, huge carbonation from the bottle, after you wrestle open the draconian Ommegang cork that extends deep into the bottle. Moderate lacing and straw notes all around.

S: There is plenty of orange and lemon zest present with a nutmeg and/or holiday spice profile to it. There are some clove notes and musty belgian yeast that are expected from the style.

T: This beer has a huge bread profile with an expansive body that burns itself away with the alcohol profile. You get a honey with biscuit quality up front that subsides into a heat that tastes like chinook or perhaps just the unsupported alcoholic profile. The balance is precarious but well executed.

M: This beer has an incredible balance for the three batons it maintains in the air at all times. First and foremost a big wheat and malty character lays the groundwork for all of the sweet notes including banana and very starchy fruits. Finally the heat from the alcohol appears and drives a heated zambonie over your palate to await the next sip.

D: For a beer of this abv and character, this is dangerously dirnkable. If they sold this in 12oz bottles I would see it performing as a condescending older brother to any Blue Moon siblings. It shines most in its ambition and delivers in execution. I would be able to drink this throughout an entire game of Civilization, which is to say I would pass out because 5 hours of Gnomegang is just too much gnome for any man.

Narrative: PING! PING! PING! Garnab loved his craft and it showed. He surveyed the blade of the battleaxe with pride and rolled its haft in his calloused hands. The blade was competent and durable, yet light and precise. FSHHH! The iron sizzled upon being cast into the cool water. "GARNAB GET IN HERE!" his supervisor called from down the hall of the Morgrem guild. Garnab slid into the chair daintily, an impressive feat for a gnome of his heft and weight. "Garnab, we have all been noticing you around here, your fine work, your precise castings, and impeccable attention to detail." Garnab grunted lightly and carressed the chain of precious silver that he painstakingly created years earlier. "That is why you have been promoted to assistant vice-Gnome of the Belbgaar foundry." He nodded silently and exited, his cool stride demonstrating his poise and power within, Garnab was going places.

 2,416 characters

Photo of jrallen34
3.36/5  rDev -17.8%
look: 2 | smell: 3.5 | taste: 3.5 | feel: 3 | overall: 3.5

Big thanks to Sean via Wakefield... black body with some dark brown fringes, no carbonation... strong syrupy nose of molasses and raisins, the oak is really smooth adds a nice spicey note to the beer, some alcohol, but in your face and strong... the taste is too sryupy, raisins, lots of char, a bit of vanilla on the finish... worth trying, better than its parts

 363 characters

Photo of vette2006c5r
3.9/5  rDev -4.6%
look: 4 | smell: 4 | taste: 4 | feel: 4 | overall: 3.5

This beer pours a hazy yellow color, with not to much of a head. The aroma was full of spices, and almost a wheat smell. The taste had a very strong spice taste, in a strong pear taste. The taste was strong and bold, and the alchool while not noticable did make a hit. Overall it was a good beer, but I was just expecting more.

 327 characters

Photo of EORS
4.62/5  rDev +13%
look: 4.5 | smell: 5 | taste: 4.5 | feel: 4.5 | overall: 4.5

750 mL bottle into a goblet. No bottled on/expiration date on label.

Appearance: Honey golden color with fine carbonation and a billowing white head that leaves a small amount of lacing on the glass.

Smell: Sweet orange dominates the nose. Spicy, musty aroma from the yeast and a sharpness which may be either hop or alcohol.

Taste: Tangy fruits (citrus, richer flavors along the lines of plum and cherry) alcohol adds warmth and a bit of punch. Mellow and sweet through the body, with spice from the yeast mixing with the malts.

Mouthfeel: Heavy and rich without being syrupy.

Overall: Lovely and rich brew from Ommegang and Chouffe. Highly recommended for a special occasion.

 683 characters

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

A: Smooth yellow with an orange tint. Highly opaque. One finger white head with moderate lacing.

S: Orange and lemon zest, bananas, grapefruit and Belgian yeast. Some hints of pepper and creamy malts.

T/M: Not far from the nose. Sugared fruits (listed above), Belgian yeast bite, mildly bitter hops and smooth/bread-like malts. Tastes almost like a bock-style brew. 9.5% ABV is beautifully tapered in the body of the beer as the slight burn of alcohol brings out more flavor. Sweet, malty/bready, fruity. Tangy, almost sour mouthfeel. Well-balanced for a Belgian strong ale. Medium body, medium carbonation.

D: A good Belgian. This is definitely the brew you're looking for if you like this style.

 700 characters

Photo of chasebrownyeah1
4.25/5  rDev +3.9%
look: 4.5 | smell: 4.5 | taste: 4 | feel: 4 | overall: 4.5

Gnomegang ABV: 9.5%

A: Pours a hazy orange fluid that sticks to the glass each time you take a sip. Leaves a minimal head.

S: Smells of citrus, plums, banannas, hops and the alcohol is very potent. The smell in very pungent in the nose.

T-M: Has a very sweet taste of what you would see in a fruit basket. The alcohol is apparent in the taste that adds nicely to the flavors. The fluid coats the palate very well and goes down to the gut very smoothly.

O: Overall, this is a good beer. Would I have this beer again... Sure! Very tasty and an appealing.

 557 characters

Photo of wesbrownyeah
4.3/5  rDev +5.1%
look: 4.5 | smell: 4.5 | taste: 4 | feel: 4.5 | overall: 4.5

Gnomegang by Brewery Ommegang New York, Belgian Strong Pale Ale 9.5% alcohol. This Corked and Caged 750ml bottle poured into a oversized wine glass.

A- Produces a fluffy off white head that slowly desipates to a half inch leaving patchy lacing on the rim of the glass. Hazy orange and firery red when light passes through it, quite the spectacle.

S- Smells of rich and musky Belgian yeasty notes followed by sweet over ripe pears. Light notes of sharp alcohol sting the nose.

T-M- Taste upfront is a yeast and alcohol flavored warmth. As the beer warms up I found that the flavors of pear, bannanas, and tangy hop bite come into place. All and all this is a yeasty Belgian Strong Pale Ale at it prime, that being said... I love it! With its multi complexities of fruit flavors, to its musky yeast notes, and alcohol warmth that is what makes this a winner in my book. Mouthfeel is moderately carbonated with bubbles that tingle the tongue with help of the alcohol. Smooth with a sharp punch.

Overall this beer is everything it promises in the long run. A strong Belgian Pale that produces the lasting flavor and feel that they have for years and years... cheers!

 1,167 characters

Photo of ne0m00re
4.28/5  rDev +4.6%
look: 5 | smell: 4.5 | taste: 4 | feel: 5 | overall: 4

05/24/11- Review of a 750 mL bottle.
A: Pale clear golden, constant bubbles and a frothy white head.
S: Wheat, floral, slightly rustic, bananas, overall clean, some chrysanthemum. Good.
T: Sweeter, herbal and floral, lingering acidic twang, nice green hops, lemon zest, and good overall.
M: Starts thick, almost creamy, turns froty, then evacuates with a sticky sweet twang lingering.
O: Great beer. I probably won't seek it again, but I rather enjoyed trying it.

 463 characters

Photo of MbpBugeye
3.52/5  rDev -13.9%
look: 3.5 | smell: 4 | taste: 3.5 | feel: 3.5 | overall: 3

On tap at Bodega. 10oz served in a tulip.

A slightly hazed gold with a small cap of pure white foam. Lacing here and there.

Lots of nice yeasty esters. Very spicy and floral. Apples and pears add a juiciness to it that really bulks up the aroma.

Very spicy and yeasty. Almost too much so. There is a little bit of that band aid flavor that really intense Belgian yeast can give off, but it is mostly blanketed by floral and juicy hops.

At first this beer was way too cold. I had to wait quite a while before I could fully enjoy it. The mouthfeel is dry and fluffy with a lively carbonation.

Not a bad beer, but the yeast flavors are very strong. I'd like to see it toned back so that the juiciness of the fruity hops can shine.

 777 characters

Gnomegang from Brewery Ommegang
4.09 out of 5 based on 1,557 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.