St. Stefanus | Brouwerij Van Steenberge N.V.

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87
very good
78 Reviews
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St. StefanusSt. Stefanus
BEER INFO

Brewed by:
Brouwerij Van Steenberge N.V.
Belgium | website

Style: Belgian Strong Pale Ale

Alcohol by volume (ABV): 7.00%

Availability: Year-round

Notes / Commercial Description:
No notes at this time.

Added by Fux on 03-08-2012

BEER STATS
Reviews:
78
Ratings:
290
Avg:
3.87
pDev:
21.19%
 
 
Wants:
14
Gots:
63
For Trade:
2
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Reviews: 78 | Ratings: 290
Photo of hops4life
4.03/5  rDev +4.1%
look: 4.5 | smell: 4 | taste: 4 | feel: 4 | overall: 4

Could be a blonde with some tripel aspirations. Very good look, aroma, and head. A little dry in the taste department. While not mind-bendingly good, it is an extremely good blonde. The packaging and price set up higher expectations, but if you put this in a Leffe bottle your jaw would drop. Very nice. Will keep an eye on this brewer and importer.

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Photo of RblWthACoz
4.04/5  rDev +4.4%
look: 4 | smell: 3.75 | taste: 4.25 | feel: 3.5 | overall: 4.25

Now that is the coolest bottle cap ever. Ever.

I can't remember the last time I tried a Belgian-brewed ale. This is a nice one. Nice yeast tones with a good level of sweetness. Carbonation is a but aggressive. No matter though; another nice brew from Steenberge.

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Photo of AmitC
4.05/5  rDev +4.7%
look: 4 | smell: 4 | taste: 4 | feel: 4.5 | overall: 4

Had it at a tasting event. Poured from a 750ml bottle. The packaging date marked on the bottle was 4/12. So it was 6 months old. Bottle had a description of its complexity and flavor profile with age, with it being most complex after 18 months from packaging. So i had it when it was still on the younger side.

Pours with small head which fades with time. Color is golden and the ale is a lot clear. Mild carbonation.

Smell is prominently fruity and has a good mild nose. Smell definitely is complex in terms of no clear fruit bias.

Tastes slightly sweet No hops discernible either in smell or in taste. Fruity, somewhat watered down honey like taste. Alcohol intensity is not at all felt.

Mouth feel. Medium to light bodied. Very easy on palate. Smooth as hell. One of the smoothest beers i have ever had. Easy to drink. I can have it all day only if it costed less than 12 bucks.

Excellent brew.

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Photo of tastybeer
4.06/5  rDev +4.9%
look: 3.75 | smell: 4 | taste: 4.25 | feel: 3.75 | overall: 4

A: Light and glowing, slightly amber gold. Head is nicely bubbly and good in size. Holds a 1/4 inch once faded. Lace is straggely and blotchy.

S: Aroma is spicy, flowery, bright with lemon, and there's plenty of cookies plus crackers.

T: Spice at the front here also. Sweet sugar cookies with lemon, soft candy orange, cream, apples... A variety of well organized flavors.

M: Texture is pronounced syrup with tingly carbonation. This has a fullness to it but its very easy to drink.

O: Quite a lot of interesting and enjoyable things going on here. Score.

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Photo of bluejacket74
4.06/5  rDev +4.9%
look: 4 | smell: 4.25 | taste: 4 | feel: 4 | overall: 4

750 ml caged and corked bottle, 4-2012 Cellar Release. Served in a Unibroue tulip, the beer pours a hazy dark gold color with about an inch and a half off-white head. Head retention is good, and there's a decent amount of lacing. Aroma is nice, the brew smells like orange and lemon peel, peppery spice, herbs, root beer, and some green apple. It tastes like cloves, peppery spice, orange and lemon peel, bubblegum, tangerines, pears, and a bit of licorice and apple. Very yeasty. Mouthfeel/body is medium, with a good amount of soft carbonation that makes this easy to drink. I liked this brew, certainly worth trying if you've never had it before. $11.99 a bottle.

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Photo of LiquidAmber
4.06/5  rDev +4.9%
look: 4 | smell: 4.25 | taste: 4 | feel: 4 | overall: 4

Poured into a Gulden Draak tulip. Pours a medium burnished golden amber with a one finger white head with great retention and lots of lacing. Nice aroma of light stone fruit, Belgian yeast, caramel malt, clove. Flavor follows, with caramel malt, stone fruit and light citrus, clove, hints of banana, starts semi-sweet, but finishes dry with a bit of astringency from the clove. Medium bodied with active carbonation. A nicely made Belgian pale ale with good fruit and light malt flavors, good transition to the dry finish, perhaps a bit astringent in the finish. A crisp, tasty Belgian froma brewery that makes some of my favorite ales (Piraat and Gulden Draak). Always a pleasure.

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Photo of Malt_Man
4.08/5  rDev +5.4%
look: 4.25 | smell: 4.25 | taste: 4 | feel: 4 | overall: 4

Served at cellar temperature from 330ml bottle into Duvel glass.

L) Pale light orange colour, cloudy, fair bit of yeast sediment. 3cm fluffy white head.

S) A fresh, zesty smelling beer. Belgian wit yeast in there, sweet oranges.

T) Fresh citrus flavour, balanced off with brown sugary sweetness. Malty background. Lots of things happening, all balances together nicely.

F) Quite strongly carbonated, a bit of bitterness. No lingering aftertastes.

O) This cost me £2.49 from Tesco supermarket and I have really enjoyed it, recommended.

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Photo of FriarMickOnThePlateau
4.11/5  rDev +6.2%
look: 2.5 | smell: 4 | taste: 4.5 | feel: 4 | overall: 4

Cellar release Oct 2012, consumed March 2015. The taste was perfect once the giganto head subsided. The head lasted as long as the beer. Great lacing... however a bit over done. Really the only thing I can fault it for along with the haze, blonds should be clearer. Overall, this is a very clean and creamy blond and well worth the wait.

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Photo of boggles08
4.13/5  rDev +6.7%
look: 4.5 | smell: 4 | taste: 4 | feel: 4.5 | overall: 4.25

Cellar release May 2015, brewed February 2015, and consumed October 2015, therefore 8 months of maturity at time of consumption.

According to the explanation on the bottle, the profile at 8 months is expected to be approximately half way between fresh/fruity and complex/aromatic. I used a St Stefanus goblet.

I can confirm this is a great beer, which reminds me of Chimay Grand Reserve although St Stefanus has rice as one of the ingredients, which seems odd.

I paid £2 (US$3) for a 33cl bottle.

This is my first ever review. I hope it helps.

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Photo of Axnjxn
4.13/5  rDev +6.7%
look: 4.25 | smell: 3.75 | taste: 4.25 | feel: 4.25 | overall: 4.25

330ml bottle into a snifter. "cellar release 4-2012" stamped on the bottle

Pours a darker copper color with a 2 inch white head. extremely fizzy, bubbles shoot from the bottom to the top and seem to make the head even larger as it lingers in the glass for a bit.

sweet honey aroma on the nose. yeasty and bready as well.

taste is pretty great. sweet and fizzy, like drinking an extremely carbonated soda. classic belgian yeasts show through on the finish. tad of bitterness on the back end. this is a very complex beer that will change drastically depending on how long you age it. lighter side of medium bodied with high carbonation. this isnt something you chug down, but honestly you could if you wanted to. its quite easy to drink.

overall picked this up on a whim as it was extremely cheap, and am thoroughly impressed. glad i got a 4 pack.

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Photo of ccrida
4.14/5  rDev +7%
look: 4.25 | smell: 4.5 | taste: 4 | feel: 4 | overall: 4

750ml bottle, Cellar Release date 8-2012. Poured into my large Gulden Draak tulip, St. Stefanus is hazy, dull dark gold. The huge, frothy white head has medium-sized bubbles and is fairly slow to settle, leaving rocky foam and pockmarked lace.

Smell is pithy, some what chalky minerality with light tropical fruit reminiscent of a saison, which I love. A touch of over-ripe banana, caramel, bananas foster, but it's a distant secondary note. I'm sure it will grow pronounced with time, as this is only 11 months old from release. I like it here.

Taste is similar, this really has a nice pith too it, but the banana is more pronounced than the nose. A little oxidized, the esters are stronger and more over-ripe. Still nice clean maltiness.

Mouthfeel is on the dry side, with full but soft effervescence. Medium light.

Drinkability is pretty good, it's a solid Belgian blonde, but I wish I had had it on the fresh side, and the mineral notes hint at what would probably be right in my sweet spot of fantastic beer closer upon release. Still quite good now however.

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Photo of OlaB
4.15/5  rDev +7.2%
look: 3.75 | smell: 4.25 | taste: 4.25 | feel: 4 | overall: 4

L: Clear orange color, gives of a medium top of head that disolves rather quickly, Lacings on the glas is decent

S: Caramel ,apples ,grapefruit,banana,yeast and cinnamon, very fresh and fruity smell

T&F: fruits, toast, malt sweetness , hop bitterness in the finishing,,i think the flavour was very good balanced, very fruity taste on it. much of the aroma is also to find in the flavour..Not to sweet and not to bitter highly carbonated, very drinkable.

O: I was suprised over how fresh and enjoyable this beer was . I sure would trie this one again. Very good taste and flavours on this beer. I would like seek out more beers fro brouwerij Van Steenberge

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Photo of Radome
4.15/5  rDev +7.2%
look: 4.25 | smell: 4.25 | taste: 4.25 | feel: 3.75 | overall: 4

Poured from a 750 ml bottle into a wine glass.

A - Medium gold color; just a bit of haze. Head is white and thick and made of tiny, creamy bubbles. It is persistent and builds impressive cascades of lacing when the glass is tipped.

S - Classic Belgian pale ale aromas. Bready, grainy malt. No hops evident. Yeast shows as low black pepper and bubblegum. Just a tiny bit of alcohol aroma. Very clean, but not overly complex.

T - Taste is balanced between earthy, gentle hops and grainy Pilsner malt. There is some lemon-like tartness and black pepper, likely from the yeast, which are softened by light sugar sweetness. The hops bitterness is low to medium. Very clean and well-made.

M - Light body. Low to moderate, smooth carbonation. No alcohol burn.

O - This is a great beer. Very drinkable but full of all the right BPA flavors and aromas. All it lacks in my view is a bit more body and complexity, but that is splitting hairs.

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Photo of REDAMI
4.19/5  rDev +8.3%
look: 4.25 | smell: 4 | taste: 4.25 | feel: 4.25 | overall: 4.25

Poured from 11.2oz bottle into Chimay goblet.

A - Medium amber, pours clear...until you swirl the bottle to get the yeast. Small, moderately laced, white head.

S - Sweet, malt, mango, almost tropical.

T - Hawaiian bread, hint of tropical fruit, mild spice, slight metallic notes, banana bread esters.

M - Sharp carbonation, slick sweetness. Pleasant finish.

A beautiful bottle entices you to pick it up. The beer inside is a nice golden ale; closer to a tripel than the hop forward BSPA it is called.

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Photo of LagerCognoscenti
4.24/5  rDev +9.6%
look: 4 | smell: 4.25 | taste: 4.25 | feel: 4.25 | overall: 4.25

St stefanus

St Stefanus has a nice cloudy amber appearance with a healthy , vigorous stream of carbonation rushing up the centre of my Duvel tulip glass. The head starts off big but recedes gradually. Excellent lacing.

The aroma is dominated by slightly funky Belgian yeast. Caramel, banana and white grapes are all suggested. Every time you go for a sip you breathe in that inviting aroma beforehand and detect something slightly different from the last time.

The taste is of yeasty goodness. Slight suggestion of marmalade. A rich, spicy, sweet, complex taste with a bit of bitterness making it very well balanced dry finish. Excellent tasting beer!

Overall, a really enjoyable spicy, yeasty dry Belgian beer. Amazing to me that it's only 7% as it tastes more like an 8% or above Belgian Strong Pale Ale.

My level of enjoyment of this beer was right up there with a Duvel, Delirium Tremens or Brigand.

My percentage rating would be 94/100.

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Photo of ordybill
4.25/5  rDev +9.8%
look: 4.25 | smell: 4.25 | taste: 4.25 | feel: 4.25 | overall: 4.25

Poured from a 330 ML bottle into a tulip glass. Aroma- A really nice yeast and fruit aroma. Appearance- Pours a murky amber with a large (but brief) white head. Taste- A great blend of malt, yeast and fruit Palate- Medium bodied beer with moderate carbonation. Overall- A really enjoyable and well crafted Belgian Strong Pale Ale.

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Photo of utfiero
4.25/5  rDev +9.8%
look: 4.25 | smell: 4.25 | taste: 4.25 | feel: 4.25 | overall: 4.25

Color- deep honey. Full head.

Aroma- spice, hint of apricot, and honey.

Taste- Starts floral with mild wheatiness in mid-body then finishing with a mildly hoppy crispness. Release 7-2012.

Poured from a corked 750 ml bottle into a Liefmans Goudenband glass (my preferred all purpose beer tasting glass). Tasted Jan. 2013.

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Photo of rhoadsrage
4.32/5  rDev +11.6%
look: 3.5 | smell: 4 | taste: 4.5 | feel: 4.5 | overall: 4.5

(Served in a tulip glass)
cellar release 4/2012

A- This beer pours a thick 3/4 full glass of off-white head even with a very gentle pour. Eventually the clear orange body comes up with strands of racing microbubbles.

S- A mineral and club soda aroma has a nice full yeasty aroma with some fruity characteristics.

T- The dry slightly fruity yeast reminds me of Orval yeast with a nice soft green note in the finish and a dry banana ester coming through as the beer opens. There is a light white bread flavor underneath and some hints of more yeast character as it opens but it stays subtle even though it has some nice complexity.

M- The light mouthfeel has a more full tight fizz but no alcohol noticed. And there is a nice crisp texture in the finish.

O- This beer is very sessionable with a nice flavor and depth to the yeast profile with some soft support from the malt. I'm not sure aging it would help any, as the bottle suggest, but I could be wrong.

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Photo of Cylinsier
4.35/5  rDev +12.4%
look: 4.25 | smell: 4.25 | taste: 4.5 | feel: 4.25 | overall: 4.25

11.2 oz, dated April 2012, tasted today.

Pours a slightly hazy orange-lemon gold, half inch coarse white head retains as a film.

Smells of lemon, orange zest, light grassy herbal notes, coriander, bretty yeast and candi sugar.

Tastes mildly citrusy with elements of lemongrass, candi sugar, bananas, coriander and orange peel. Some slighty grassy bitterness in the aftertaste.

Full body with bubbly carbonation on the roof of the mouth and going down.

A really tasty, well-balance strong Belgian ale, lovely aroma and flavor profiles, good body, and highly drinkable. A definite winner.

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Photo of Richardp
4.36/5  rDev +12.7%
look: 4 | smell: 4.75 | taste: 4 | feel: 4.75 | overall: 4.5

330cl bottle, cellar release date 5-2013

Poured slowly into Belgian beer bowl glass, slightly cloudy with a very strong head. Highly carbonated, with many small bubbles. Served slightly warmer than suggested 8c (personal preference).

Complex aroma, with honey banana, and slightly sourdough bread hints.

Complex somewhat crisp, and fruity taste, malt and caramel undertones, with a lasting dry yeast finish. Hints of spice, though very background.

Lively mouthfeel, due to carbonation, with a hint of alcohol, and sparkle on the toungue. Lasting coating of sweetness in the mouth augments the aroma.

Overall a complex, light, fruity, beer, with hints of further complexity.

I have another bottle, that is slightly older, and intend to keep it a further 3-4 months, in the hope the spice character develops.

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Photo of DenverLogan
4.37/5  rDev +12.9%
look: 4.75 | smell: 4 | taste: 4.5 | feel: 4.25 | overall: 4.5

Corked bottle puts out a nice pop. Dated April 2012 as a cellar release. Poured in tulip (Scotch Silly) glass. Big head hangs around for awhile...clear gold color.
Aromas of flowers, root beer, other sodas, fennel.
Significant carbonation lasts for a long time.
Flavors of light malt, minerals, anise, powdered sugar, orange zest, sarsaparilla.
Overall a bright, spritzy brew with nice flavors...nothing really overpowering as it should be for a blonde. No rich malts, strong hops or significant alcohol. I get a good deal on this beer and have been through half a dozen bottles by myself. Very nice starter beer for the evening or with various foods or a great sharing brew. Should age well for a year.
2/20/2013 Having another April 2012 bottle...cork went flying far...can't find it in living room! Poured in Stone tulip glass...modest head Same smell as before with a touch of liquorice. Significant carbonation and big mouthfeel. Similar flavor profile with a touch more bitter bite...I'll give it a few minutes...aaaah....5 + minutes later...has opened up another notch. Carbonation mellows a tad and the sweet malts come out, and some light flowery herbs...some resemblance of a ginger-vanilla soda. In my first review I said it would be a nice starter beer for an evening, actually, after having several nice Wild Mountain IPAs I find this a wonderful follow-up. Can work as a final brew with it's powdered sugar tingly carbonated finish. Very tasty and fun.

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Photo of ChainGangGuy
4.38/5  rDev +13.2%
look: 4.5 | smell: 4 | taste: 4.5 | feel: 4.5 | overall: 4.5

33cl bottle - $3.99 at Total Wine & More in Kennesaw, Georgia.

Cellar Release: 4-2012.

Appearance: Hazy, amber-gold body with two full inches of airy, pillowed, near white head.

Smell: Sweetish aroma of golden syrup dotted with crumpled cookies dusted very lightly with ground spice and housing a conspicuous fruitiness.

Taste: Golden syrup coated barley ushers in a juicy orchard fruitiness of pears, peaches, and Golden Delicious apples. Slightly spicy, herbal touch nudged by the bright carbonation. Sweetish cookie/cracker vibe on the quite crisp finish.

Mouthfeel: Medium-bodied. High carbonation for a lively mouthfeel.

Overall: A tasty, refreshing, spirited Belgian blonde ale. I enjoyed it quite a bit, actually.

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Photo of RickS95
4.39/5  rDev +13.4%
look: 4 | smell: 4.25 | taste: 4.5 | feel: 4.25 | overall: 4.5

Blonde/pale ale...whatever. Looks like either. Similar to an American pale ale, just a spit lighter, a bit clearer, and with some floaties in it. Regardless, it's nice looking with a contrasting bright white head. The head isn't huge and doesn't last long, but the contrast it provides is welcome and it leaves behind a thin lace.

Nose is pleasant as it melds citrus, spicy pepper, and floral notes. If you take a big whiff, you'll pick up some alcohol and other esters, but overall, the nose is very Belgian.

Great taste. The Belgian yeast is amazing as it provides everything the nose picked up. It's bursting with flavor with pale malts and the yeast completely overwhelming the hops.

Not sure if they used champagne yeast (they used three different kinds of yeast), but it feels like it with its light, airy, carbonated feel up front. The spicy white pepper takes notice mid sip before the carbonation spikes the sides of your tongue in the swallow. Light to medium bodied, despite the 7% ABV. Dry crisp finish.

Overall, this was a pretty amazing beer. It's bursting with Belgian flavors and shows what a difference there is between a good Belgian pale ale and what Americans have done to the same style...no necessarily better or worse, just incredibly different. This is a great example of the style.

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Photo of pat61
4.44/5  rDev +14.7%
look: 4.5 | smell: 4.25 | taste: 4.5 | feel: 4.5 | overall: 4.5

Bread, fruit, biscuit on the nose. It pours brilliant gold with a slight copper tint under a lacy, 2” pillowy head. The initial palate offers an array of fruit – peach and tropical light fruits with some over ripeness. A light sweetness form the malt hinting at bubble gum balances an earthy hop bitterness on the finish. Mdeium full body ahnd medium carbonation.

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Photo of BeerMeColorado
4.49/5  rDev +16%
look: 4.75 | smell: 4.5 | taste: 4.5 | feel: 4.25 | overall: 4.5

Bottled 8-2012 Can't read the brewmaster signature to well...Versele?

Poured a classic Belgian rocky pillowy head with massive carbonation.

Nose of tree fruit and bready yeast. Quite nice.

Taste was great...crisp and clean with similar notes from the aroma. Very enjoyable. Not as boozy as others which was nice.

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St. Stefanus from Brouwerij Van Steenberge N.V.
3.87 out of 5 based on 290 ratings.
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