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Atomium Grand Cru | Brouwerij Van Steenberge N.V.

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86
very good
83 Reviews
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Atomium Grand CruAtomium Grand Cru
BEER INFO

Brewed by:
Brouwerij Van Steenberge N.V.
Belgium
vansteenberge.com

Style: Belgian Strong Pale Ale

Alcohol by volume (ABV): 8.00%

Availability: Year-round

Notes / Commercial Description:
No notes at this time.

Added by BeerAngel on 03-14-2003

BEER STATS
Reviews:
83
Ratings:
157
Avg:
3.85
pDev:
17.4%
 
 
Wants:
11
Gots:
15
For Trade:
0
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Reviews: 83 | Ratings: 157
Photo of ronniebruner
4.7/5  rDev +22.1%
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!

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Photo of RedBeerchetta
4.55/5  rDev +18.2%
look: 4 | smell: 4 | taste: 5 | feel: 4.5 | overall: 4.5

I had this on tap at the Monk's Cell at The Publick House. Nice copper color with not much of a head. Nothing noteworthy about the nose. Served in a goblet (off brand). But the taste was something unusual for a Belgian strong. There's an earthiness about it that I really enjoyed. It's much more complex than, say, Tremens, and stands out from something like Duvel without being odd or out of style. It's "discretely unique", I guess is how I'd put it. One of my favorite Belgian Strong Ales.

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Photo of pmcadamis
4.4/5  rDev +14.3%
look: 4.5 | smell: 4.5 | taste: 4.5 | feel: 4.5 | overall: 4

A - A massive four-finger honeycomb head rises above a cloudy honey-hued brew turbid with chunks of yeast. The head sticks around for quite a while, and then settles at a thick cap. Loads of off-white lace are left on the sides of the glass.

S - Honey, clover, heather, and confectioner's sugar. Yeasty honey-drizzled warm home-made bread. Some banana, caramel apple, and peach are noticeable behind the yeasty goodness. Smells outdoorsy and fresh like laundry dried outside on a line....but also honeyed, bready, and yeasty.

T - Fresh warm homemade bread yeasty malt with baked apples drizzled in honey. Extremely fruity and honey-sweet. Banana and peach add a spritz of slightly tart balancing vibrancy to a very yeasty and sweet brew.

M - Ridiculously full bodied and thick with sugar. The thick syrupy viscosity of this brew is a continuation of the honey themed appearance, nose, and flavor. Chewy and solid with a bit of alcohol heat.

D - This is outstanding beer, but it's hindered a bit by the overwhelming sweetness. More of a dessert beer than something you would have two or three of.

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Photo of RixBeer
4.39/5  rDev +14%
look: 3 | smell: 4 | taste: 4.5 | feel: 4.5 | overall: 5

Pours a slightly hazy pee colored yellow. The coloration reminds me of a bud light. This beer exploded with foam. More than 6" of head. YIKES....as it settled it did stick to every inch of the side of my glass. EVERY INCH!

Definite smell of coriander and some kind of wheat and various spices sort of flowing awkwardly together. Very interesting smell with a hint of pear or apple. Great smell. Very pleasing!

Yup, coriander and lots of it along with some a sort of earthy graininess that a balances the spice quiet well.

The carbonation dies to a pretty balanced point where the beer not only becomes drinkable but also requires you to sip and sip again and again. Surprisingly good!

This beer is very drinkable as it hides it's 8% ABV insanely well! I'm shocked at how delicious this beer is on a nice hot day!

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Photo of martyl1000
4.38/5  rDev +13.8%
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.

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Photo of StevieW
4.35/5  rDev +13%
look: 4.5 | smell: 4.5 | taste: 4.5 | feel: 4 | overall: 4

Stubby 33cl brown belgian bottle. Pale golden color. Dense, creamy off white head. Lots of lacing. Sticks to the glass. Freshly spiced aroma, lots of cinnamon, fresh honey and whiffs of citrus. Taste was sweet, almost syrupy for a few tastes. Subdued citrus flavors. Hints of honey goes by again. Lots of snappy hops to finish. Sticky sweet finish, but late hop presence with good bitterness cleans out the palate. No trouble with the alcohol, 8% abv. A very good belgian beer. Worth a try. Compliments of the BelgianBum.

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Photo of ngandhi
4.35/5  rDev +13%
look: 4.5 | smell: 4.5 | taste: 4 | feel: 5 | overall: 4.5

In the style of Duvel, but considerably more interesting, the Atomium is a classic example of the Belgian tripel that comes at a time when many are being brewed too sharp, sweet, or bland. It's a compendium of Belgian brewing with shortbread and bitter--but green and herbal--hop flavors, medium body, consistently crisp aroma, and wonderful length. I stress that these hops are very fresh and maybe, outside of the yeast of trappist ales, the best indicator of what it means to be a Belgian beer. This is the type of stuff that's in your blood, and I imagine that when a Eurail passes through the country, this is what it smells like between the cars.

Relax, relaxx.
ng

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Photo of TurdFurgison
4.35/5  rDev +13%
look: 4.5 | smell: 4.5 | taste: 4.5 | feel: 4 | overall: 4

I had this on tap at Deep Ellum. It was served in a big goblet shaped like some other Belgian goblets (I have an identical one from St Bernardus), with the Atomium logo. The beer was copper color with a thick foam leaving lots of lacing on the glass. The nose is pretty complex, maybe due to the 6 grains they brew it from (barley, rye, wheat, buckwheat, spelt, maize). The overall effect is a sweet aroma similar to Tripel Karmeliet. The taste is also very similar to Tripel Karmeliet, but maybe a little stronger or richer (maybe). Definitely a sipper due to all the flavors but it was hard for me to sip too slowly. An awesome beer, as are several others from this prolific brewery.

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Photo of Gusler
4.34/5  rDev +12.7%
look: 3.5 | smell: 4.5 | taste: 4.5 | feel: 3.5 | overall: 4.5

The beer after its extraction from the 330ml stubby brown bottle sets in the glass a muzzy orange color with a Bunyanesque creamy light tan head, as it, slowly dissintagrates the lace forms a thick blanket to obfuscate the glass. Nose is over ripe fruit, lots of malt, fresh and crisp to the senses, start is ambrosial with a decent malt presence, the top light to moderate in feel. Finish is authoritarian in its acidity, the hops spicy and pleasing to the palate, quite dry and some somewhat tart aftertaste a nice drinking beer has a nice bit of tummy warming.

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Photo of Barnoloid
4.34/5  rDev +12.7%
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.

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Photo of GreenWBush
4.31/5  rDev +11.9%
look: 5 | smell: 4 | taste: 4 | feel: 4.5 | overall: 5

A six-malt beer? Interesting. You probably won't hear beer geeks bitching about the corn in this one if they taste it first and find out about the ingredients later.

Atomium pours into my brandy snifter a cloudy, darkened auburn. I picked this beer up out of town and during a sharp-stop on the drive home, the cap came partially opened, spilling a few drops out onto my backseat. Fortunately, this puncture-wound did not affect the flavor or appearance of this beer. Phenomenally powered head-presence that meringues way over the top of the glass like a hat. Patience is required before the first sip.

Initially, I get a strong yeast character; proofed yeast starter. Following that is an infinite underlayer of fruit that leans most strongly towards pear and apple-cider. Clove-like phenols. Orange, Curaçao, coriander, rose hips, and cracked pepper.

Fruit impressions carry over strongly to the taste as embodied by pears and peppered citrus. Earthen hop-zing synergizes with near-tart yeast twangs. Blend of malt-bill makes malt indistinguishable from flurry of spices and phenols, but maintains ephemeral and downright refreshing girth. Clean and compact.

Sits incredibly light on the tongue. Finishes spry, acidic, and addictive. Quenching.

Not exactly the most complex Belgian out there but entertaining enough and oh so drinkable for an 8% beer.

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Photo of BeerBelcher
4.28/5  rDev +11.2%
look: 4 | smell: 3.5 | taste: 4.5 | feel: 4 | overall: 5

I ordered this out of curiousity and was very pleasantly surprised by what I got...quite a bit lighter than other "Grand Cru" I've had, but not entirely inconsistent with other Beglian Strong Ales (like Duvel) I've enjoyed in the past.

It poured a light yellow color, with an impressive amount of effervescence. Tons of cumulus head that towered over the rim of my glass. Aroma was very light and sweet, with plenty of very zesty lemon flavor. You could sense the alcohol presence, although the beer tasted smooth and in no way astringent. Mouthfeel was extremely smooth.

Highly recommended.

I had a bottle of this at the Palm Tavern in Milwaukee. The bartender said they just got it, so I would assume my bottle was rather fresh (I forgot to check for a date code).

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Photo of Loki
4.25/5  rDev +10.4%
look: 4 | smell: 4 | taste: 4.5 | feel: 3.5 | overall: 4.5

Sampled from a 330mL bottle a friend brought back from Belgium.

Appearance: golden orangish color with a quickly forming and dissipating head comprised of millions of tiny bubbles. Sticky cobwebs of lacing that cling just right above the liquid.

Smell: Aromas of honey and orange peel with hints of tangy yeast and some spices. A faint waft of white pepper and coriander perhaps.

Taste: Beautifully balanced sweet honey and orange zest with Belgian yeast spice dance together fluidly. Flavors are very balanced and flow smoothly. Subtle spices start to play a more dominate role with coriander coming out more fully and a slight wheat flavor as well.

Mouthfeel: Probably my only issue with the beer. The first part of the glass was an over carbonated almost alkaseltzer like carbonation that was not that pleasant, but in no way ruined the experience. Was the initial carbonation subsided after a few minutes the mouthfeel was more balanced and more enjoyable.

Drinkability: Wonderful, aside from the first carbonation, this is a wonderfully smooth and enjoyable beer that beguiles its 8% ABV.

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Photo of Newsman
4.22/5  rDev +9.6%
look: 4 | smell: 4.5 | taste: 4 | feel: 4 | overall: 4.5

Had this with a vegan meal at Horizon's in Philadelphia. (This place, BTW, had the best beer list I've ever seen in a vegan joint. And even if you're an avowed carnivore like myself, it's good food, too.)

Sorry...on to the beer. Had the 11.2 oz. bottle brought to me with the appropriate Atomium goblet -- nice touch.

Pours a slightly hazy orange with a massive head that took a while to subside, leaving lacing all the way down. Smelled of citrus, a bit of yeast, a bit of bread.

The taste was impressive -- a good mix of light malts and a bit more hop than I expected, but nothing overwhelming. A very good blend of flavor, with some notes of honey and baked bread lurking behind the initial rush. The alcohol is very well masked.

The mouthfeel reminded me of champagne -- well carbonated. I wonder if the folks who had this on tap may have suffered from a lack of carbonation in the keg, because in the bottle, it wasn't a problem.

Overall, this is a very drinkable beer. It may feel like a session beer, but I felt this one by the end of the first, so beware of that subtle alcohol.

I would absolutely have this again.

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Photo of BeerAngel
4.22/5  rDev +9.6%
look: 4 | smell: 4.5 | taste: 4.5 | feel: 4 | overall: 3.5

Pours a pale golden orange and is very clear yet busy with a ton of carbonation with one massive off-white head that stays and stays and stays. The smell of sweet fruit and a tart yeasty smell combine to make your mouth water. The taste is a warming blend of more of the sweetened fruit, spices, tangy yeast, and a warming finish with a carb bite. This is very nice! This is a light bodied brew that finishes slightly sweet but is balanced out by the well-pronounced carbonation. It is a very solid and fairly complex beer and I would definitely have this again! Thanks to BelgianBum for this beverage! Op uw gezonheid!

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Photo of SurlyDuff
4.2/5  rDev +9.1%
look: 4 | smell: 4 | taste: 4.5 | feel: 4 | overall: 4

On-tap at Bukowskis in Cambridge, served in a goblet. Fluffy white head, pillowy. Bright pale golden and clear. Lots of litttle bubbles zipping skyward.

Big yeast aroma. Farmhouse(horseblanket) and bandaide are there, but theres good purfume and spicy malt too.

Big yeast taste too. Tad bit of rubberband and bandaid again. Sour apple and some other flavors that remind me of a flemish red/wild ale. Fizzy carbonated mouthfeel. Surprisingly full body. Alcohol is present as a spicy bitterness.

I really enjoyed this and my goblet disspeared faster than I wanted it too. It makes me want to take big gulps to get the explosion of flavors...its hrad to sip, even though its meant to be a sipper at 8%

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Photo of Gavage
4.2/5  rDev +9.1%
look: 4 | smell: 4 | taste: 4.5 | feel: 4 | overall: 4

Appearance: light orange with a 1" head that lasts a while.

Smell: caramel sweetness, earthy tones, and a hint of alcohol are pleasant on the nose.

Taste: nice lightly grainy malt profile here. Caramel, ripe plums, yeast, soft earthy tones, mild alcohol, and a moderate bitterenss provides a great flavored beer.

Mouthfeel: lightly crisp to start, smoother at the finish. Medium-heavy bodied beer. Long aftertaste as the flavors last in the mouth a while.

Drinkability: for the style this went down quickly. I enjoyed two of these in a session, and if the alcohol level wasn't so high I would have had some more. Nice beer.

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Photo of ABCJiugui
4.17/5  rDev +8.3%
look: 4 | smell: 4.5 | taste: 4 | feel: 3.5 | overall: 4.5

on tap at Deep Ellum, in atomium chalice/goblet.

A- big rocky, 2-3 finger foamy head, retains to 1/2 finger or less, lacing is somewhat clumpy, but consistent in patches, clinging to the glass in larger bubbles. Straw golden, catches the light really well, fairly clear.

S- Poached pears, a little buttery, maybe fermented corn, preserved peaches. Very fruity nose overall, like a pleasantly mild mixed alcoholic fruit cocktail.

T- Fruity sweetness, very present, but not overpowering- overall pretty balanced and soft. Some butteriness, can't detect any real hop bitterness at all. Very pleasant to drink- finish is smoooth, fairly dry.

M- Smooth, initially think it's pretty full bodied, but it's delicate, with very little carbonation, leaving one feeling it's actually a bit thin. Overall, really really soft on the tongue and going down.

Overall, I was very happy with this beer- reminded me of don de dieu with its fruity profile, but with less carbonation. Had 2 glasses and was really surprised at the ABV- VERY well hidden, almost no sense of it until later when it takes effect. Definitely would get again on tap.

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Photo of sprucetip
4.13/5  rDev +7.3%
look: 5 | smell: 4.5 | taste: 4 | feel: 3.5 | overall: 4

Bottle into snifter.

Enormous foamy white head. Mildly hazy and golden. Leaves large patches of lacing for the duration of the sample.

Smells spicy and of Belgian yeast. Bready with fruity esters. Has legs. Very nice

A bit like the nose in some respects. Spicy and yeasty at first, then some fruity, hoppy bitterness in the middle mixing with a subdued malty sweetness. A bit of lingering hop bitterness and citrus in the slightly dry finish.

Effervescent, tingling sensation at first, recedes, a pleasant texture follows before finishing slightly dry. Medium body. Not as full feeling as I expected.

I seem to say this alot, but pretty easy drinking for a fairly big guy. The Belgian yeast character is modest and balanced nicely by the restrained pale ale hoppiness. This one might work for some folks who are not wild about the "Belgian taste" associated with the yeast strains that is often more bold than it is here.

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Photo of chinabeergeek
4.13/5  rDev +7.3%
look: 4.5 | smell: 4 | taste: 4 | feel: 4 | overall: 4.5

on-tap at deep ellum, allston, ma, served in branded chalice.

golden straw color with slight haze. lots of head that barely fades, and plenty of great, bubbly lace.

buttery and fruity (ripe pear?) aromas and slight herbal/grassy note. whiff of mint (?!)

you can definitely get a sense of the "multigrain" profile in the taste. deep ellum's tap menu said it had: barley, rye, wheat, buckwheat, spelt and maize. again, buttery with pears. mild and evenly distributed bitterness. finish is a bit empty however - almost watery, as if the taste crescendos right before and abruptly cuts off...

smooth, but slight watery feel as well. gentle carbonation.

very drinkable. watch out with the hardly noticeable ABV

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Photo of crossovert
4.12/5  rDev +7%
look: 4 | smell: 4.5 | taste: 4 | feel: 4 | overall: 4

11.2 oz brown bottle. Label call it ' Atomium Premier Grand Cru".

It pours a honey gold with a bright white and big and fluffy head. The ehad sticks for a while and leave some nice lacing.

The smell here is luscious and intriguing. Tons of yeasty spice just assaults the senses. There is also a huge fruity smell, almost tutti frutti with a bit of orange and coriander. This is a 6 grain ale and it has a nice sweet breadiness under all of the yeast mayhem.

The taste is big and fruity, they were really going balls out with the fruit here. There is some subtle spiciness and a thick malt backing but it is mainly just fruit salad in flavor. Definitely a unique and interesting Belgian Pale.

This one is another solid brew from this brewery, I have always seen it and finally bought it and now love it.

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Photo of EPICAC
4.12/5  rDev +7%
look: 4 | smell: 4.5 | taste: 4 | feel: 4 | overall: 4

On tap at The Publick House. I don't remember what type of glass this was served in, probably a tulip glass or a snifter style glass. It poured a golden-copper with a thin, white, filmy head. Sheets of lace clung to the side of the glass. There's a malty, honey sweetness in the aroma, a bit of sharp fruitiness, and a hint of spiciness. There's a clean, malty, fruity sweetness upfront, a light, medicinal quality through the center, and subtly spicy and bitter finish. Medium-bodied, but the high carbonation leaves you with a light sensation on the tongue. The spicy and medicinal flavors do a lot to balance the sweetness and add a bit of character.

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Photo of mariposafan
4.1/5  rDev +6.5%
look: 5 | smell: 5 | taste: 3.5 | feel: 4 | overall: 4

Pours bright orange-gold with a huge, fluffy energizer bunny head. It keeps going, and going, and going.... Leaves lacing all down the glass as you drink out from under the head.

The aroma is bright and inviting. Yeast, bubblegum, spices, malts. Maybe some floral hops back there.

The flavor is reminiscent of the aroma but more muted. A little watery and a little more bitter than I was expecting, though not too bad. A little citrusy twang and mustiness add some character.

Feels nice. Medium bodied with creamy carbonation.

Drinks just fine. No noticeable alcohol and it's certainly pleasant enough. If the flavor were a little sweeter and with a little more yeastiness it would be a favorite Belgian style. As it stands, I'll be happy to have it again, but only if Duvel isn't available.

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Photo of kmpitz2
4.1/5  rDev +6.5%
look: 4 | smell: 4 | taste: 4 | feel: 4 | overall: 4.5

Pours a slightly hazy dark straw color with a finger of head that falls to a complete coat over top. A modest bubble comes up from the bottom of the glass to maintain things nicely. Nose is very fruity with buckets of golden raisin and a tinge of white grape. There is a light banana sweetness in there as well as a light breadyness. Good complexity and a nice mix. Flavor is lighter than I expected. Much the same as aroma, with banana, light raisin and a very light breadyness. Feel is surprisingly light. Its probably moderate, but the highly active carbonation makes this one feel exceptionally light. Overall, this one is nice. No hint of 8% ABV at all. As it warms a little, the feel becomes a bit thicker. Nothing gets in the way with this one. Solid.

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Photo of chinchill
4.09/5  rDev +6.2%
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.

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Atomium Grand Cru from Brouwerij Van Steenberge N.V.
3.85 out of 5 based on 157 ratings.
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