Atomium Grand Cru
Brouwerij Van Steenberge N.V.

Atomium Grand CruAtomium Grand Cru
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Style:
Strong Ale - Belgian Pale
Ranked #98
ABV:
8%
Score:
86
Ranked #19,432
Avg:
3.87 | pDev: 12.14%
Reviews:
87
Ratings:
167
From:
Brouwerij Van Steenberge N.V.
 
Belgium
Avail:
Year-round
Wants
  11
Gots
  16
SCORE
86
Very Good
Atomium Grand CruAtomium Grand Cru
Notes:
View: Beers
Reviews: 87 | Ratings: 167 | Log in to view all ratings and sort
Photo of StonedTrippin
StonedTrippin from Colorado

3.94/5  rDev +1.8%
look: 3.75 | smell: 4 | taste: 4 | feel: 4 | overall: 3.75

a unique beer as grand cru goes, flavorful and different, never seen this one around before now. its a weird pick for an italian restaurant to have on their menu, but im not complaining, peroni wasnt going to cut it! this is hazy amber colored with a nice off white belgian looking head on it and only a little bit of sediment as the very bottom of the stubby little bottle, looks pretty good, even in a pint glass, which is definitely wrong for this, but came to the table already poured, too late to ask for a wine glass or anything. strong spice notes in nose and taste, this one apparently uses quite a few different malts, and i wouldnt be surprised if rye and/or triticale were among them, as this has a definite spice to it, earthy, dry, harvest timey, and quite pungent through the sweeter, more traditional grains. the yeast shows some banana and clove and even a pear ester, but its also relatively clean as these go, and doesnt overtake the drink at all. some clove in the taste, earthy grains, toffee, brown sugar, clove, plantain, almond, fig, golden raisin, rock candy, honey, mace, astringency, its odd, but its good, and it warms up really well, opening up more and more on the fermentation side but never getting sweet or strong, and holding its bubbles really well. maybe not a perfect accompaniment to a heavy pasta dish, but a fine bottle of beer that i feel fortunate to have found. unique malt profile, classic belgian yeast, old worldy and fun. very enjoyable, even if possibly dated.

Sep 26, 2019
Photo of Smakawhat
Smakawhat from Maryland

4.02/5  rDev +3.9%
look: 4.25 | smell: 4 | taste: 4 | feel: 4 | overall: 4

Poured from the bottle into a tulip glass.

Golden orange bodied, with light touches of off white colored creamy head goodness on top. A dolloped easily two fingers, settles to a nice icing like top. Nice middle column of carbonation rising through the centre to, excellent looking Belgian.

Solid estery touches on the nose. Sweet sensing fruit, almost orange like with touches of light cream. Hints a slight bit fussel but no terribly, mixing with a good fruity basket of peach and citrus.

Real nice palate. Slightly light bodied for a strong ale, but creamy flavors of light vanilla mixing with a nice sucrose of orange and peaches. Honey like finish with even less boozy flavors than expected from the nose too makes for a good feeling. Slightly prickly mouthfeel on the first tip of the tongue as well, making for a little bit of play in drinking.

Very nice easy going well rounded large Belgian golden ale.

Aug 25, 2018
Photo of Blackop555
Blackop555 from Michigan

3.79/5  rDev -2.1%
look: 4 | smell: 3.75 | taste: 3.75 | feel: 4 | overall: 3.75

Pours hazy copper. Fluffy, tall, white head that lasts a while fading to a rocky head.

Smells doughy malt, floral, funk, honey and hints of citrus and spice.

Tastes malty and honey. Floral, fruity, apple, raisin, touch of citrus and spice finish is semi dry with a light floral bitterness and malt. Medium body and fizzy medium carbonation.

May 19, 2017
Photo of Bdubz94
Bdubz94 from Wisconsin

4.33/5  rDev +11.9%
look: 4.5 | smell: 4.5 | taste: 4.25 | feel: 4.25 | overall: 4.25

Pours a medium golden color. A large head leaves nice lacing. The head stays around for quite a while. Smells very malty and bready with hints of banana and possibly other fruits. Tastes similar to the aroma with a hint of crispness. The crispness and carbonation on top of the malt backbone really make this beer. Although there are better Belgian beers out there, this is one I certainly enjoy. Very smooth for 8% ABV with just the right amount of mild fruity tones.

Apr 03, 2017
Photo of Beginner2
Beginner2 from Illinois

4.11/5  rDev +6.2%
look: 3.25 | smell: 4 | taste: 4.25 | feel: 4 | overall: 4.25

We can argue if Atomium is among the very top BSPAs, but this one is good enough to have again and again. (This review is probably my third tasting; but only because it no longer is common in the Midwest.)

A nice head invites, but is only average. Aromatics are much fuller; Atomium has got the yeasts and grains producing some really interesting fruits and an earthiness so nice that I can stick my snout in this for the better part of the evening. But the bottle goes too quickly because the Taste delivers the nose's sensations as full flavors; fruity malts that become honey-ish in mid-palate and nice spicing that goes beyond just hops. The mouth ends creamy and, for me, satisfyingly balanced.

The OA effect is good, particularly when mide flavorful food is involved. Now based on memory, I suspect this yeast can vary across the years. But that's OK: I look forward to finding it again and, hopefully, again.

Oct 25, 2016
Photo of chinchill
chinchill from South Carolina

4.09/5  rDev +5.7%
look: 4.25 | smell: 4 | taste: 4 | feel: 4.25 | overall: 4.25

330 ml bottle in Oregon.

Large tan head over a hazy copper body.

Medium body and carbonation.

Fruity aroma suggests a multitude of both dark dried fruits and soft ripe fruits. plus some spices.

The nicely complex flavor largely follows but with lower spiciness. Date, fig and dried plums are all present.

Jul 24, 2016
Photo of Barnoloid
Barnoloid from Illinois

4.34/5  rDev +12.1%
look: 4 | smell: 4.25 | taste: 4.5 | feel: 4.25 | overall: 4.25

There is a dryness to this ale that makes it extremely inviting, yet at the same time some sweet malt, bread and a touch of bitterness on the taste profile that adds a really complex pallette of flavors. A little pepper and spice with a honey note. Really solid, and goes well with food.

Mar 26, 2016
Photo of jwc215
jwc215 from Arizona

4.05/5  rDev +4.7%
look: 3.75 | smell: 4.25 | taste: 4 | feel: 4 | overall: 4

Pours hazed medium golden with a tint of orange. A thin, wispy head leaves trailing spotted lace.

The smell is of melon, banana, clove, cotton candy, caramel and lemongrass. Pretty robust.

The taste is of clove honey, melon, banana, bubbelgum, and a touch of lemongrass. Some alcohol shows in a peppery, warming way.

Smooth medium body.

A well-made, enoyable, sweet-leaning Belgian Strong Pale Ale!

Dec 05, 2015
Photo of stevoj
stevoj from Idaho

4/5  rDev +3.4%
look: 4.5 | smell: 3.75 | taste: 4 | feel: 4.25 | overall: 4

Really pleasant and smooth Belgian ale. Copper/orange in color with high fluffy head, which fades to small creamy head with lots of lacing. Aroma is malt, with lots of bread, flowers, spice, fruit and barnyard smells. Taste is more of the same, smooth and buttery. Slick mouthfeel, long finish.

May 27, 2014
Photo of superspak
superspak from Ohio

4/5  rDev +3.4%
look: 4 | smell: 4 | taste: 4 | feel: 4 | overall: 4

330 ml bottle into tulip glass, 11JL bottle code. Pours lightly hazy golden orange color with a 2-3 finger dense and fluffy white head with good retention, that reduces to a nice cap that lingers. Spotty foamy lacing clings around the glass, with a moderate amount of streaming carbonation. Aromas of big lemon zest, peach, pear, apple, pepper, straw, grass, herbal, honey, bread, and yeast earthiness. Very nice aromas with good balance and complexity of fruity/spicy yeast ester and pale malt notes; with good strength. Taste of big lemon zest, peach, pear, apple, white grape, pepper, straw, grass, herbal, honey, bread, and yeast earthiness. Good amount of yeast spiciness on the finish; with lingering notes of lemon zest, peach, pear, apple, white grape, pepper, straw, grass, herbal, honey, bread, and yeast earthiness on the finish for a good bit. Very nice complexity and balance of fruity/earthy yeast and pale malt flavors; with a crisp malt/yeast flavor balance and zero cloying flavors after the finish. Medium-high carbonation and medium bodied; with a very smooth, crisp, and lightly prickly mouthfeel that is nice. Alcohol is well hidden with minimal warming present after the finish. Overall this is a damn nice Belgian strong pale ale. All around good balance and complexity of fruity/earthy yeast and pale malt flavors; and very smooth and crisp to sip on. A very enjoyable offering.

Apr 29, 2014
Photo of mactrail
mactrail from Washington

3.93/5  rDev +1.6%
look: 4.5 | smell: 4 | taste: 3.75 | feel: 4 | overall: 4

Beautiful fine-grained foam on the the clear, golden brew. Poured into the tall Saxo tulip. Aroma of spicy fruit. Foam lasts to the very bottom of the glass.

Medium body. Malty with a fair amount of sweetness. a tang of lemons and honey. Yeasty with a slight drying sensation. Overall, this is rich and mellow, with that tart edge that keeps it from cloying.

Moderate alcohol taste with sweet pineapple. It's like a tropical mixed drink dosed up with bitters. So pleasantly aromatic with every mouthful. A great sipping beer that is yet another odd variation on Belgian themes. From the 12 oz bottle bought at AJ's Fine Foods in Phoenix.

Aug 23, 2013
Photo of FlatRabbitRed
FlatRabbitRed from Arizona

4/5  rDev +3.4%
look: 4 | smell: 4 | taste: 4 | feel: 4 | overall: 4

If you like Belgian beers this one holds up pretty good, had three different ones tonight, and this one fits the bill.

Belgian beers have this fruity Honey twang to them followed by a slight bittering after taste. They are definitely in a class by themselves! I drank this one "Grand Cru" right after a Duval "Golden Ale" ...and you know what, they were pretty much the same thing ...to me anyway. I noticed a difference in the triple and that was that it had three times the flavor!

Mar 10, 2013
Photo of TheBigLebrewski
TheBigLebrewski from Michigan

3.34/5  rDev -13.7%
look: 4 | smell: 2.5 | taste: 3.5 | feel: 4 | overall: 3.5

Appearance is oddly dark - very much the color of honey. Large bubbled head that's pretty thick, and maintains at a 1/4 inch. Decent lacing.

I do not enjoy the smell. Certainly the scent of malt; also of corn.

Surprisingly considering the scent, i did enjoy the taste. A very gentle sourness, but appreciable none-the-less. Pretty par though flavor overall.

Mouthfeel is definitely the beer's strong point. Crisp and tart additions to the flavor.

Overall, this was better than I expected, but nothing too special. Certainly an odd mix of some detrimental attributes, alongside some surprisingly good ones.

Dec 15, 2012
Photo of Biffster
Biffster from Michigan

3.13/5  rDev -19.1%
look: 3 | smell: 2.5 | taste: 3.5 | feel: 3.5 | overall: 3

Poured from a stubby, the beer is cloudy (even after a few weeks in a fridge upright) and deep straw gold, with amber highlights. The head is big and coarse and just off white, and very persistent. Swirl it, and you will get a big head over and over.

The aroma is fresh and fruity, with big banana, and apple and strawberry in support. There is vanilla, and fresh white bread with just a touch of toast. The hop aroma is barely perceptible. It is sweet with a honey like floral impression.

It starts with a low maltiness that passes to a low to moderate bitterness. It is very spicy and warming, maybe even hot, at the swallow. It is very dry all the way through, but there is a low to moderate malty sweetness that lingers with the spicy dryness. The swallow is, as I said, warm and fairly dry, but there is a lingering bitterness and maltiness that gives it a fuller, more moderate impression.

The carbonation is big - both fluffy and spritzy. Along with the moderate body, the result is a fluffy round mouthfeel that is relatively full for a strong belgian, but by no means coating or lingering. It is, however, somewhat hot and even solventy at the swallow.

I feel like this is a perfect recipe - I love the clean malt and bittering. But the fermentation is questionable. I will give it the benefit of the doubt and question its trip from Belgium to my door as the culprit, but I note a distinct lack of Belgian phenolic aromas, and a distinct harshness at the swallow. This is total speculation, but, with that, combined with the cloudiness despite cold conditioning, I feel like it seems familiar. I have had an experience or two like this as a brewer. This seems like a beer that aged too long before bottling, and then was bottle conditioned at a too warm temperature to compensate for tired yeast. (Sorry for the shameless speculation).

I would give it another try, but this sample was not that exciting.

Nov 26, 2012
Photo of tectactoe
tectactoe from Michigan

3.79/5  rDev -2.1%
look: 4 | smell: 3.75 | taste: 4 | feel: 3.5 | overall: 3.5

Pours a light golden color with a bit of haziness, but overall nice clarity. The beer is incredibly volatile, it overflowed and went everywhere upon opening the bottle and created a gigantic head, even with a relatively modest pour. The initial smells are most fruity, mainly apple, banana, and some white grape. The taste follows through with the same fruit, banana being the most prominent, with slight grape and apple skins in the background. Lots of wheat and grain flavors come through as the beer warms up. Spices are there, as well, namely clove, although it's more laid back than it is in traditional Belgian beers. The alcohol is slightly warming but not invasive. Carbonation is huge, as it is with most of these styles. Medium body with a crisp overall feeling on the mouth.

Pretty good brew, it's hard to go wrong with a Grand Cru straight from Belgium. Nice addition of apple and grape to the traditional "banana & clove". Very drinkable at 8% ABV, also.

Oct 15, 2012
Photo of match1112
match1112 from Illinois

3.68/5  rDev -4.9%
look: 4 | smell: 3.5 | taste: 3.5 | feel: 4 | overall: 4

pours a hazy amber with a thin white bubbly head. aromas of grass, banannas, clove, corriander. taste is pretty sweet. alochol is present. has a medium body feel to it, makes it easy to drink. carbonation is good and a crisp dry finish make this beer very enjoyable.

Aug 26, 2012
Photo of martyl1000
martyl1000 from Wisconsin

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

I like this better than its much more famous compatriot Delirium Tremens (the fact that Atomium comes at half the price might play a part in that).

Bright and bubbly, even a careful pour producing a billowy, rocky, white head.

Big, complex. Digging the Belgian yeast w/ its delicate tropical fruit. Malt character dominates, though a hoppy thread is strung throughout (except maybe in the aroma).

The malt sweetness and yeasty funk might have been overwrought, were it not for the zippy carbonation and white-pepper on the tongue.

This is 8% alcohol? You'd never know.

Jun 12, 2012
Photo of Rifugium
Rifugium from North Dakota

3.92/5  rDev +1.3%
look: 4 | smell: 3.75 | taste: 4 | feel: 3.75 | overall: 4

First had: on tap at Teresa's, Wayne, PA

Served in a tulip glass, a golden-amber color, slightly hazy, with a small bubbly white head. Aroma was dominated by honey sweetness and candi sugar, with notes of Belgian yeast and fruitcake. Honey sugar sweetness on the tongue right away, mellowing out to let in flavors of toasted bread, Belgian yeast, citrus zest, light spice, floral hops. Crisp and satisfying, light-medium body, appropriate alcohol content, tasty and easily drinkable.

Mar 19, 2012
Photo of flannelman808
flannelman808 from California

3.85/5  rDev -0.5%
look: 3.5 | smell: 3.5 | taste: 4 | feel: 4 | overall: 4

A: hazy orange yellow pale amber with a thin white foam decent lacing.

S: green banana, corn husk, wet earthy suggestions

T: Almost a soft almond sweetness blending into sweet tree fruit and melon. All of this backed with a subtle tall grassy herbal bitter snap along with drying carbonation.

M: prickly

O: Just a bit of butterscotch makes this one a good, but underwhelming brew.

Feb 08, 2012
Photo of jsisko01
jsisko01 from Michigan

3.16/5  rDev -18.3%
look: 4 | smell: 3 | taste: 3 | feel: 4 | overall: 3

Appearance - Pours a dark honey/amber color with 4 inches of fluffy foam.. I had to keep stopping and waiting to get the whole beer in the glass. Takes at least a good 5 minutes to dissipate. Lacing is great though.

Smell - Coriander is the most dominant aroma here.. followed by some clove, honey, pale malts, and yeast.

Taste - Strong flavor of honey, along with coriander, clove, white peppercorns, yeast, and a mild alcohol bite at the end. Way too sweet of a beer, with just minimum bitterness in the finish.

Mouthfeel - Heavy body with medium carbonation.

Overall - If you don't mind how sweet it is then you have yourself a pretty good beer. It's almost like drinking honey. Tastes very similar to Beerhive Tripel by New Holland Brewing Company.

Feb 03, 2012
Photo of feloniousmonk
feloniousmonk from Minnesota

3.95/5  rDev +2.1%
look: 4 | smell: 4 | taste: 4 | feel: 3.5 | overall: 4

clear, amber coloration, with fierce carbonation, under a soled, lacy, snow-white head.

Aroma: citrus and spice meets barnyard funk. ripe orange and lemon, coriander and clove, with a whiff of that special something only Belgian yeast brings.

Taste: full, rich, and sweet. soft, lush, and lovely. Beautiful mix of Belgian yeast, bright hops, and sweet, tasty malt. Mmm.

Crisp? Satisfying? Yeah…dang, I have to forget to read those things. Smooth. Mmm. Yes, And, yum, let's not forget that. Just downright enjoyable. 8% by Vol? Yeah, I can deal with that.

Dec 24, 2011
Photo of KickInTheChalice
KickInTheChalice from Illinois

3.48/5  rDev -10.1%
look: 4 | smell: 3.5 | taste: 3.5 | feel: 3 | overall: 3.5

Served on tap in a chalice at Hopleaf.

Appearance: My pour is a hazy copper color with a few flashes of amber. A medium sea foam rocky head rests on top, fading over the course of a few minutes while still leaving a bit of lace behind.

Smell: The aroma is dominated by the aromatic Belgian yeast, sweet bready malts, and some cherry and grape fruitiness.

Taste: The flavor starts out with sweet bready pale malt with a hint of honey. Pears, cherries, and white grapes provide a fairly strong fruit presence that blend with an aggressively spicy Belgian yeast strain. The end has a bit of ethyl alcohol and some light grassy hops. The finish has a lingering sweetness to it.

Mouthfeel: Unfortunately, the feel is a bit syrupy. The carbonation feels like it should be up to the task of washing away any sticky residue, but it doesn't quite do that. This also creates a bit of a heavy sensation, pushing the body to the full side of medium.

Overall: This is a beer I have had a few times, and it just never really impressed me. With all of the great Belgian beers out there, it is tough to justify giving this one another look.

Nov 21, 2011
Photo of AgentZero
AgentZero from Illinois

3.43/5  rDev -11.4%
look: 4 | smell: 3.5 | taste: 3.5 | feel: 3.5 | overall: 3

A - Pours a pale golden color with a couple fingers of soapy head.

S - Stone fruits and some phenolic belgian yeast on top of pale malts. Not bad for the style.

T - Taste is what you would expect from the nose, with phenolic yeast and sweet pale malts/stone fruits being most of what you can pick out.

M - Medium bodied, a little syrupy, lower carbonation, dry finish.

O - It's alright, but nothing special. Little too yeasty for me, would pass on this in the future.

Jul 14, 2011
Photo of Knapp85
Knapp85 from Pennsylvania

3.97/5  rDev +2.6%
look: 3.5 | smell: 4 | taste: 4 | feel: 4 | overall: 4

Poured out as a golden yellow color, the head was fizzy and white. The lacing was minimal. The smell of the beer was spicy, there was some sweet aromas and a bit of yeast on the nose too. The taste of the beer has a really nice blend of honey and spice working together. The mouthfeel has a little bite from the carbonation but is still pretty smooth feeling. Overall this beer was pretty nice in general. I found the flavors to be good and the drinkability was very nice also. Worth trying for sure.

Jul 14, 2011
Photo of ronniebruner
ronniebruner from Arizona

4.7/5  rDev +21.4%
look: 5 | smell: 5 | taste: 4.5 | feel: 5 | overall: 4.5

WOW! I was completely surprised with this beer. I bought it only because I had never seen it. This beer has an amazing aroma! It poured a beautiful golden yellow with a perfect amount of white head. It is enfused with honey and seet spices, something I was definitely not expecting, and leaves a wonderful taste on the tongue after it is swallowed. Definitely a unique brew and well worth the time! At $2.49 for an 11.2 oz bottle, get one!

May 30, 2011
Atomium Grand Cru from Brouwerij Van Steenberge N.V.
Beer rating: 86 out of 100 with 167 ratings