Brouwerij Van Steenberge N.V.

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Belgian Strong Pale Ale
Ranked #14
Ranked #3,273
4.1 | pDev: 11.71%
Brouwerij Van Steenberge N.V.
Notes: Belgian Strong Pale Ale, re-fermented with Bordeaux wine yeast
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Reviews: 1,080 | Ratings: 2,581 | Log in to view all ratings and sort
Photo of AZBeerDude72
4.25/5  rDev +3.7%
look: 4.25 | smell: 4.25 | taste: 4.25 | feel: 4.25 | overall: 4.25

A: Hazy gold, rich white foamy head, snow like lacing.
N: Malt, crackers, honey, yeast, wheat, and fruit notes.
T: Follows the nose, nice malt hit with some fruit, honey, cracker, wheat, and minor alcohol bite.
M: Medium with a lot of flavor going on.
O: A solid beer, great mix of flavors.

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Photo of faraday326
4.3/5  rDev +4.9%
look: 4.5 | smell: 4.5 | taste: 4.25 | feel: 4 | overall: 4.25

Darker straw yellow. Slightly hazy. Decent but not heavy fizz. Aroma is so nice. Spiced fruit and, well, alcohol. Very light scent of hops. Taste follows the nose. Lovely, full bodied, with fruit and spices... transitioning to the malty sweetness. It's a bit syrup-y in the finish owing the high alcohol and the maltiness of it all. For a "strong" ale, this thing is amazing, but it's not a super easy drink in large quantities because of the high ABV.

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faraday326 from California, May 23, 2020
Photo of mothman
4.25/5  rDev +3.7%
look: 4.25 | smell: 4.25 | taste: 4.25 | feel: 4.25 | overall: 4.25

Bottle. Large eggshell white head. Lace. Dark clear golden color.

If you drank this blind it’s a cross between a tripel and a quad. Strong, boozey, bananas, cloves, spice, Belgian yeast, toffee, apple skins, plums, Chardonnay/champagne. Very complex. Very flavorful.

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mothman from Minnesota, May 19, 2020
Photo of TheGent
4.04/5  rDev -1.5%
look: 4.25 | smell: 4 | taste: 4 | feel: 4.25 | overall: 4

The beer pours translucent with an ever so slight haze. Pale amber with a off white head that leaves a lot of sticky lacing. A thin layer of foam across the top of the beer and a thick ring around the edge of the glass. A couple bubbles floating up from the bottom.

A moderate nose with some booze soaked raisins and figs. Definitley getting some dark dried fruit. Honey drizzled fruit bread.

Honey graham cracker sweetness up front. Dried dark fruit like on the aroma including figs. Apple and pear as well. More honey drizzled bread. Lingering warmth and a touch of bitterness on the finish to add some complexity and cut the sweetness.

Super duper light on palate. Pillowy soft. The liquid seems to evaporate leaving behind warming fumes of alcohol.

Overall: This beer hits all the right notes. Nice sweetness up front and mid palate with a shift to more dry and slight bitterness on the finish. The 10.5% ABV is noticeable and appreciated for the style.

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TheGent from New Jersey, May 09, 2020
Photo of JonnoWillsteed
3.69/5  rDev -10%
look: 3.75 | smell: 3.5 | taste: 3.75 | feel: 3.75 | overall: 3.75

L- A rich gold colour, clear, pours with 5mm white head. (Note: botttle-conditioned, handle according to how you favour sediment in the pour). Head still 3mm 15mins later.
S- Pungent, musky and brief mild sour notes. Interesting to get little scent/sense of it's hefty ABV% yet.
T- Boof! Pungent, rich, leaves clear alcohol tang and zing on tongue and lips.
F- Rich but balanced by pungent ABV%.
O- Very enjoyable as long as you're expecting a pretty full-on experience. Interesting to see it's refermented in the bottle with yeast usually used for brewing wine, in order to get this ABV%. Enjoyable but might it be 'too much of a good thing', subtlety of crafting absent versus high impact instead?
330ml bottle. BB: 29/10/21. Bought from BeersOfEurope (UK).

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Photo of woosterbill
4.32/5  rDev +5.4%
look: 4.75 | smell: 4 | taste: 4.25 | feel: 4.75 | overall: 4.5

33cl bottle into a Duvel tulip.

L: Clear amber body under a gorgeous, rocky white head that towers effortlessly an inch above the rim of the glass before slowly settling and leaving chunky lace. Beautiful beer.

S: Big, bold, and yeasty. Lots of clove, candi sugar, apple, and apricot. Moderate ethanol. Good mixture of spice and fruit. Pleasant.

T: Sweet malt and sugar up front, with more delicate fruity and spicy notes building in behind. Lovely mid-palate of apricot, pear, and faint nuttiness. The finish is dry and boozy, with just as much kick as expected from 10.5%. Lots going on, and almost all of it very good.

F: Soft but substantial, drying but lively. Pretty much spot on for the style.

O: Great beer, and a great example of the style. I prefer Duvel for its drinkability, but Piraat is rich and complex.

Beers of Fame tick 183/250. Cheers!

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woosterbill from Kentucky, Dec 24, 2019
Photo of Mugman8
4.44/5  rDev +8.3%
look: 4.5 | smell: 4.25 | taste: 4.5 | feel: 4.5 | overall: 4.5

Big pillowy head, ample lacing and hazy burnt orange in color. Big fruity taste and wonderful mouthfeel. This brew has a kick (10.5 ABV) but is smooth and crisp on the finish. I love this beer....I will be buying again soon!

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Mugman8 from New York, Dec 17, 2019
Photo of Thankin_Hank
4.37/5  rDev +6.6%
look: 4.5 | smell: 4.25 | taste: 4.25 | feel: 4.75 | overall: 4.5

Revisiting another Belgian beauty that I didn’t review but rated. A golden color and a fabulous long lasting head with lots of carbonation. Aroma is banana and sugar sweet. I can taste the banana with clove and sugar. The thick mouthfeel is really nice. Overall another exceptional Belgian Ale.

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Photo of octortus
3.79/5  rDev -7.6%
look: 3.75 | smell: 4 | taste: 3.75 | feel: 3.5 | overall: 3.75

330 mL Bottle. ABV 10.5%.
Appearance: Very slightly veiled deep gold, Under one finger of off-white fluffy white head, Soft carbonation, Very long lasting cap remains.
Aroma: Soft bready malt, Slight caramel, Fruity esters, Apple juice, Pear, Slight pitted fruit.
Mouthfeel: Medium body, Alcohol presence, Slight hop bitterness.
Flavour: Soft bready malt, Slight caramel.
Overall: I normally like to feel a bit of the alcohol, but I found it distracting in this beer. It still fits the style but perhaps could have been more enjoyable if the alcohol was more hidden. Nice complexity in the aroma.

Review: 86

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octortus from Ontario (Canada), Nov 22, 2019
Photo of VABA
4.1/5  rDev 0%
look: 4 | smell: 4 | taste: 4.25 | feel: 4 | overall: 4

A- Pours a nice light amber color with a slight head and lacing
A- Aroma has caramel, fruity and malty hints
M-The taste follows the nose with caramel, fruity and malty flavors
M-A medium bodied well carbonated beer
O-A good Belgian Strong Ale

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VABA from Virginia, Jul 21, 2019
Photo of JacobusFavier23
3.91/5  rDev -4.6%
look: 4.25 | smell: 3.75 | taste: 4 | feel: 4 | overall: 3.75

L- Hazy golden orange beer with a nice bubbly appearance.
S-Apple juice, pear and sweet sugary malt. Very molasses like with a hint of honey. A big alcoholic boozyness at the end which kind of takes away from the beer.
T-Follows the nose almost perfectly, sweet apple juice, pear and sweet sugary malt. Very molasses like with a hint of honey. Notes of cinnamon and nutmeg. Some bitterness, but overall very sweet.
F- Juicy full bodied beer.
O- I'll elaborate later, but this was a very, very good Belgian Strong Pale Ale. Would absolutely have again.

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Photo of jlindros
4.31/5  rDev +5.1%
look: 4.25 | smell: 4.5 | taste: 4.25 | feel: 4.25 | overall: 4.25

Reviewed as part of BJCP training, 25C Belgian Golden Strong.

Pours a big pillowy foamy head, mildly dense but more bubbly and a little rocky, nice retention and lacing, slight hazy deep copper blond color

Nose very fruity and complex, apple, pear, some fig plum, prune, a mild cherry like too, big peppery phenols and spices, some perfumey alcohol as well, fair malts, not so much blond as more sweet toasty with a little caramel and toasty bread crust like, malt derived esters as well as the yeast

Taste brings more rich malts out front, toasty bready crust, sweet-grainy malts, a hint of malt caramel, as well as malt derived esters, ester fruits come with mild prune, date, as well as apple pear, mild peppery spicy phenols, and smooth but peppery spicy perfumey alcohols, spicy hops kick in with a fair bitterness, increasing towards the finish, a mild dry but mild sweet finish, lingering spicy hop bitterness and peppery phenols

Mouth is medium bodied, very high effervescent carbonation, mild smooth perfumey alcohol

Overall quite nice, a bit heavy in the dark malt characters, but quite enjoyable, and hits the spot when I'm hankerin for this style

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jlindros from Massachusetts, Feb 23, 2019
Photo of GrumpyGas
4.08/5  rDev -0.5%
look: 4.25 | smell: 4.25 | taste: 4 | feel: 4 | overall: 4

12oz bottle poured into a tulip glass slows a gold colored body with active rising bubbles to a robust 2" head of tight bubbles which dissipates to a persistent film and leaves voluminous steps of artistic lacing.

Aroma is bready malt and banana yeast hints and the flavors match.

Mouthfeel is a fuller medium with a slightly sticky finish.

Overall really aggressive Belgian yeast.

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GrumpyGas from Illinois, Feb 02, 2019
Photo of Breakfast-Porter-Guy
4.18/5  rDev +2%
look: 4 | smell: 4 | taste: 4.25 | feel: 4.25 | overall: 4.25

Had a 12 oz bottle today with lunch at an authentic Belgian Bistro in the Orlando area (Sanford), which I'll rate later, but a delightful beer indeed! Light and full of flavor! Lots of foam and very smooth.

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Photo of Craig-er
4.22/5  rDev +2.9%
look: 4.25 | smell: 4 | taste: 4.25 | feel: 4.5 | overall: 4.25

Just a spectacular Belgium beer that I have enjoyed over the years. Golden hue of color, somewhat of a sweet smell, taste is lovely with a beautiful body, the feel just lingers on like an angel.

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Craig-er from New Hampshire, Dec 28, 2018
Photo of C-Stockwell
4.35/5  rDev +6.1%
look: 3.75 | smell: 4.25 | taste: 4.5 | feel: 4.5 | overall: 4.25

L: an opaque burnt orange with an impressive head
S: combination of a fruity red wine and malted barley
T: sweet, either caramel or molasses, cherries, pomegranate, and vanilla
F: very fine bubbles, very smooth, and no alcoholic burn

Poured from a 750mL bottle into a 250mL (0.25L) Piraat-branded tulip glass. Piraat is my third favorite Belgian beer, with Duvel as number one and Gulden Draak/GD 9000 as number two. Rich flavor like a fortified wine, but without the aguardiente burn in say Madeira, Port, or Commandaria. I see Piraat like a moderately priced champagne - it's a bottle to be enjoyed with good food on a night to relax. Piraat is simply an exceptional drink.

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C-Stockwell from Rhode Island, Dec 11, 2018
Photo of eberesford
4.14/5  rDev +1%
look: 4.25 | smell: 4 | taste: 4.25 | feel: 4.25 | overall: 4

Deep gold with orange notes and a dense generous head. Aroma: citrus, green apple, some spice.Spice comes forward in the flavour along with some honeyish notes. Considering the ABV Surprisingly little alcohol in the flavour.

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eberesford from Ontario (Canada), Dec 11, 2018
Photo of RConrad
4.47/5  rDev +9%
look: 4.5 | smell: 3.75 | taste: 5 | feel: 4.5 | overall: 4.25

Golden in color with big foamy head. The high ABV is hardly noticeable, this is what I think a beer should taste like. Would be my daily beer if it was under $5 bottle.

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RConrad from Kansas, Nov 03, 2018
Photo of Nass
4.24/5  rDev +3.4%
look: 4 | smell: 4.25 | taste: 4.5 | feel: 4.25 | overall: 3.75

There is wonderful bubbles streaming to the top of the glass. I am getting some of the alcohol, but it's nothing overbearing or off putting. a little spicy, wheaty, very mild citrus fruit notes. Another thing that I like about these high abv Belgian Pale Ales is that hold up for a long time. You can see it on these beers for 1 year or 2 & they are still unbelievably good.

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Nass from Florida, Oct 09, 2018
Photo of MoreBeer4me
4.25/5  rDev +3.7%
look: 4.25 | smell: 4.25 | taste: 4.25 | feel: 4.25 | overall: 4.25

What's not to like about this beer? An excellent Belgium offering that I've always enjoyed. Fruity, malty and creamy with a full rich taste. When I see it, I usually pick up a few.

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MoreBeer4me from New Jersey, Sep 28, 2018
Photo of RaulMondesi
4/5  rDev -2.4%
look: 4 | smell: 4 | taste: 4 | feel: 4 | overall: 4

Yeah, this one is this one, ya know? Piraat - been around a while, she’s been taken for a few spins before. It’s like Belgium on Belgium. A waffle on top of a waffle. Peter Paul Reubens on Peter Paul Reubens. At 10.5%, this one is pretty smooth for being a big boy - kind of like an elephant in a tutu. Yeah, I dunno... like the E channel, this one isn’t exactly too inspiring. It’s just kind of there. It’s not bad by any means, but it ain’t doing it for Raul at this very moment.

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RaulMondesi from California, Jul 15, 2018
Photo of The_Bujon
4.24/5  rDev +3.4%
look: 4.5 | smell: 4.25 | taste: 4.25 | feel: 4 | overall: 4.25

Poured into a Karmeliet tulip glass. Massive foamy head with superb retention, body is a delightful apricot colour, thick and hazy with a few bubbles. Looks the business.

Aroma is quite boozy, mixed with a hefty dose of bitter malts.

Taste is just as good, a lovely malty hit upfront with a lovely bitter twist at the end which lingers long after it has disappeared down the jugular.

Feel is not as harsh as expected, this is a 10.5% big hitter and given the waft of booze I was fearful of an overly dry texture, but it is surprisingly smooth.

Overall a top top beer, certainly up there with the other classics.

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The_Bujon from Ireland, Jun 21, 2018
Photo of OlaB
4.21/5  rDev +2.7%
look: 4.5 | smell: 4 | taste: 4.25 | feel: 4.25 | overall: 4.25

Pours a hazy amber color with a huge top of white creamy had that dissolves slowly and leaves some really sticky lacings. The aroma is of citrus,apples,yeast,spices,sugar,caramel and tofee. The taste is fruity and dry with good malty tones in the back. It also has quite good spicy notes in the flavour. The finish has a comfortable bitterness with floral and grassy notes and the aftertaste has a good lenght. This beer is complex and has a good balance. The mouthfeel is smooth and creamy with a high carbonation and a medium body.
A tasty and delicious beer. Would happily drink this again.

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OlaB from Norway, Jun 02, 2018
Photo of michiganmatt
4.12/5  rDev +0.5%
look: 4.75 | smell: 4.5 | taste: 3.75 | feel: 4.5 | overall: 4

L: SRM 5, quite clear, a very generous quantity of bubbly white head, with decent retention
S: A strong aroma of sweet fruit sugars with hints of belgian yeast and spice. an overall quite pleasant bouquet
T: A complicated flavor, with dominant flavor of musty grapes, very similar to DFH's Midas Touch beer. The sweet grape flavor is complicated with moderate levels of Belgian yeast and spice flavors. While its definitely an artfully put together and well-balanced beer, I'm not sure if I dig the grape flavor. I do like DFH Midas Touch quite a bit though, so it's not that alone. Overall, I guess this particular combination of ingredients doesn't turn my taste gears.
F: This beer feels great. Medium bodied. A slightly-above-average level of high-intensity carbonation. Minimal bitterness.
O: Overall, a decent beer, and definitely worth a try.

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michiganmatt from California, Mar 23, 2018
Photo of Stoutmaster9
4.1/5  rDev 0%
look: 4 | smell: 3.25 | taste: 4.5 | feel: 4.25 | overall: 4.25

Love the "Pirate Ship" bottle cap, a keeper!
Plenty of smoke from the bottle, good omen!
11.2 fl. oz. poured into a big mouth wine glass.
Enjoyed with walnuts, blueberries and lemons.

Golden-orange, foamy two finger head, of bubbles large and small, plenty of carbonation and lacing.

A dry, malty scent, of fruits most subtle.

Creamy, crisp and floral. Cellared citrus fruit. A bit tangy, earthy-mellow.
I would not say the booze is hidden, rather presented like a gentle, sunlit wave, in a sour sea of spiced honey bliss.

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Stoutmaster9 from California, Jan 09, 2018
Piraat from Brouwerij Van Steenberge N.V.
Beer rating: 91 out of 100 with 2581 ratings