Cuvée Spéciale 800 Ans | Brasserie de l'Abbaye du Val-Dieu

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Cuvée Spéciale 800 AnsCuvée Spéciale 800 Ans
BA SCORE
3.87/5
Very Good
27 Ratings
Cuvée Spéciale 800 AnsCuvée Spéciale 800 Ans
BEER INFO

Brewed by:
Brasserie de l'Abbaye du Val-Dieu
Belgium
val-dieu.com

Style: Belgian Pale Ale

Alcohol by volume (ABV): 5.50%

Availability: Limited (brewed once)

Notes / Commercial Description:
No notes at this time.

Added by samEBC on 07-31-2016

This beer is retired; no longer brewed.

BEER STATS
Ranking:
-
Reviews:
11
Ratings:
27
pDev:
8.53%
Bros Score:
0
 
 
Wants:
0
Gots:
5
Trade:
0
HISTOGRAM
 
User Ratings & Reviews
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Ratings: 27 |  Reviews: 11
Photo of John_M
4.21/5  rDev +8.8%
look: 4 | smell: 4.25 | taste: 4.25 | feel: 4 | overall: 4.25

Available on the beer list during dinner at Imperial restaurant in Portland.

The beer pours a slightly hazy, golden amber color with good head retention and the lacing. The nose is really nice in this beer, as I pick up considerable coriander, along with some light dry citrus, honey and clove. The flavor profile replicates the nose pretty closely in this dry and lightly bitter, delightful pale ale from Val Dieu. Mouthfeel is light to medium bodied, with a clean, lightly bitter, spicy finish. Drinkability is exceptional in this well crafted beer.

Really liked this one, and thought it one of the beer Belgian pale ales I've had in some time. Quite well done.

 671 characters

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

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

i love these old random belgian beers, well, random to me i guess, probably extremely intentional by the brewer and probably highly anticipated by those in the know, but this was a random find for me, just knowing that this is the kind of thing i have been wanting to drink and craving lately, it did not disappoint! lightly cloudy and pale straw color with a muted luster and a big white wispy belgian head on it, some sediment towards the bottom of the large bottle. robustly yeasty aroma to this, rich baked banana bread, clove and allspice, black pepper and green pear, soft citrus, wheat and hay and dried grass, complex and awesome, but also kind of hoppy and kind of sweet, elements of belgian pale and tripel in here, and crazy depth for a beer so low in alcohol. the flavor is as compelling as the nose, a touch of oxidation here, but some amazing yeasty esters, grain heft, and floral hops which seem fresher in flavor than the rest of the beer. i like the maltiness of it, we dont often get this kind of body and complexity in a simple belgian pale, and a beer like this is a perfect illustration of how much better actual belgian pale ale is than the too warm fermented, too generic belgian yeasty, over hopped american takes on the style. peppery and fruity yeast abounds in this, and that is the takeaway for me. i feel lucky to have been able to have a couple of different beers from these guys this holiday season, very impressed with all of it. this was awesome.

 1,479 characters

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

Cloudy light golden color in an Orval Trappist glass. One finger head. I was expecting a bigger head.

I initially poured the beer too cold . The aroma starts to kick in with warming. Fruity, some grapefruit. I haven’t experienced this aroma in a Belgian.

Good MF. Just enough carbonation and bitterness.

Excellent taste. Grapefruit, citrus, unusual.

I’ve never tasted a Belgian like this. Unusual approach. I was expecting a traditional approach.
Very different

 471 characters

Photo of WynnO
3.75/5  rDev -3.1%
look: 3.5 | smell: 4 | taste: 3.75 | feel: 3.75 | overall: 3.5

Photo of Botulizard
3.59/5  rDev -7.2%
look: 3.75 | smell: 3.5 | taste: 3.5 | feel: 3.75 | overall: 3.75

Photo of mynie
4.78/5  rDev +23.5%
look: 4.5 | smell: 4.5 | taste: 5 | feel: 4.75 | overall: 4.75

750 ml, bottled some time last year but including a rather bold expiry date of 7/7/2018.

Pours a very pale, incredibly hazy yellow with active fizz and a wispy white head.

Smells dry and spicy with some interesting floral nodes. Pretty impressive for a beer of its strength, but I also wonder why an 800th anniversary is met with a 5.5% pale ale. Don't these silly Belgians know the American way of doing things, where landmarks are celebrated with reckless excess? Then again, that may be why their institutions have lasted 800 years...

Whatever, onto the flavor. Which is excellent. An almost wheaty start of corriander and peppercorn, moving into a middle that sparkles with yeast and lemon, finishing with more lemon, more yeast, and a tremendously variegated floral and fruity aftertaste. A true delight.

One of the best lower-strength beers I've had in a long time, and perhaps the best Belgian (single) pale I've ever come across. This is what I was hoping for many years ago when I dropped 15 bucks on an 11.2 ounce bottle of Westy Blonde. It's the sort of beer that is utterly incommensurable with contemporary American Beer Geek tastes--oh, it's flavorful enough, but it doesn't get it us drunk real quick and, yes, that's actually a big factor in our ratings. But if you're into flavorful beer, you owe it to yourself to check this one out. It's a masterpiece.

 1,377 characters

Photo of superspak
3.9/5  rDev +0.8%
look: 4 | smell: 4 | taste: 4 | feel: 4 | overall: 3.5

330 ml bottle into tulip glass, best before 3/8/2018. Pours lightly hazy pale golden/yellow color with a 1-2 finger fairly dense and fluffy white head with good retention, that reduces to a small cap that lingers. Nice spotty soapy lacing clings on the glass, with a fair amount of streaming carbonation retaining the cap. Aromas of big lemon, orange, grapefruit, peach, pear, apple, citrus peel, peppercorn, coriander, clove, cracker, white bread, herbal, floral, grass, and yeast earthiness. Very nice aromas with good complexity and balance of citrus/earthy hops, fruity/spicy yeast, and moderate pale malt notes; with great strength. Taste of big lemon, orange, grapefruit, peach, pear, apple, citrus peel, peppercorn, coriander, clove, cracker, white bread, herbal, floral, grass, and yeast earthiness. Moderate peppery yeast spiciness and herbal, grassy, citrus peel hop bitterness on the finish. Lingering notes of lemon, orange, grapefruit, peach, pear, apple, citrus peel, peppercorn, coriander, clove, cracker, white bread, herbal, floral, grass, and yeast earthiness on the finish for a good bit. Very nice complexity, robustness, and balance of citrus/earthy hops, fruity/spicy yeast, and moderate pale malt flavors; with a great malt/bitter/spiciness balance, and zero astringent flavors after the finish. Moderate increasing dryness from bitter/spiciness and carbonation. Medium-high carbonation and medium body; with a very smooth, moderately crisp, and grainy/sticky balanced mouthfeel that is great. Zero warming alcohol as expected of 6%. Overall this is a delicious Belgian blonde ale. All around nice complexity, robustness, and balance of citrus/earthy hops, fruity/spicy yeast, and moderate pale malt flavors; very smooth, crisp, clean, and pretty refreshing to drink with the balanced bitter/spicy/drying finish. Really great balance between yeast/hop flavors; with solid pils malt backing, and no residual sweetness. A very enjoyable offering, and spot on style example.

 1,994 characters

Photo of Shortbox81
4.46/5  rDev +15.2%
look: 4.75 | smell: 4.25 | taste: 4.5 | feel: 4.5 | overall: 4.5

Photo of Zazzi82
3.44/5  rDev -11.1%
look: 3.75 | smell: 3.5 | taste: 3.25 | feel: 3.75 | overall: 3.5

Photo of kbrown
3.52/5  rDev -9%
look: 3.75 | smell: 3.5 | taste: 3.5 | feel: 3.5 | overall: 3.5

Photo of mactrail
3.66/5  rDev -5.4%
look: 4.25 | smell: 3.75 | taste: 3.5 | feel: 4 | overall: 3.5

Big foam on pouring in the tall Blanche de Chambly glass. Clear golden brew with thick clots of foam as it settles down. Light mouthfeel with creamy carbonation. Aroma of yeast, straw, flowers.

Clean, slightly lemony, and a bitterish yeasty aftertaste. Even a more mineral flavor. The classic lighter Belgian taste with a dry finish. Quite pleasant and a little austere, but it seems to have aged well. From the 750 ml bottle purchased at Elizabeth Station in Bellingham, Wash.

 480 characters

Photo of rolltide8425
4.15/5  rDev +7.2%
look: 4 | smell: 4 | taste: 4.25 | feel: 4 | overall: 4.25

Photo of DioS
3.75/5  rDev -3.1%
look: 3.75 | smell: 3.75 | taste: 3.75 | feel: 3.75 | overall: 3.75

Photo of LiquidAmber
3.84/5  rDev -0.8%
look: 4 | smell: 3.75 | taste: 3.75 | feel: 4 | overall: 4

Poured into a Gulden Draak tulip. Pours a hazy, medium straw amber with a two finger white head with good retention and lots of lacing. Aroma of bready malt, Belgian yeast, lemon citrus, light ripe stone fruit, spicy and lightly floral. Flavor starts with pear and apple, lemon, coriander, Belgian yeast, a hint of caramel. Finishes quite dry and with an even drier and more mineral profile, with residual clove and coriander. Medium bodied with light creaminess and good, sharp carbonation. Starts with classic dry style Belgian pale ale flavors and then the flavor drops off suddenly into a much drier and almost stark finish. However, on subsequent sips, the fruit flavor seem to reassert themselves on each taste, leaving a pleasant dry, but citrus and light fruit residual taste. An interesting and somewhat different take on a pale ale. As others have noted, it is an odd choice to make a low ABV pale ale for a big anniversary, but this was a nice change of pace for the style. Nice cloudiness to the color and good spicy flavors. This one grew on me as I drank it.

 1,073 characters

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

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

Photo of mothman
3.75/5  rDev -3.1%
look: 3.75 | smell: 3.75 | taste: 3.75 | feel: 3.75 | overall: 3.75

Big white head. Pale straw yellow.

Tastes just like a Belgian pale ale. Herbal, bananas, Belgian yeast, bready malts, spices.

Light bodied. Nice carbonation. Dry.

Pretty solid Belgian pale ale. Fun to try, but one and done.

 228 characters

Photo of bpfrush
3.75/5  rDev -3.1%
look: 3.75 | smell: 3.75 | taste: 3.75 | feel: 3.75 | overall: 3.75

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

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

On-tap 11/8/2016 at Julian’s in Providence, RI, served in a flute glass.

A: The beer is a light gold color, with a large off-white head that fades slowly and leaves a thick lace on the glass.

S: The aroma contains Belgian yeast, caramelized malts, some spice and some fruit.

T: The taste starts out bready with flavors of Belgian yeast and a hearty but not too heavy malt character. Then some mildly sweet flavors of caramel, spices and citrus come in. The hops presence is mild but complementary and brings a good balance. The after-taste is slightly sweet and slightly bready.

M: Crisp and smooth, medium body, medium carbonation, finish is clean.

O: Tasty, goes down easily, not too filling, mild kick, good representation of style, this is a solid beer to drink for a while.

 785 characters

Photo of Beer-A-Lot
3.97/5  rDev +2.6%
look: 4 | smell: 3.75 | taste: 4 | feel: 4.25 | overall: 4

Photo of teromous
3.18/5  rDev -17.8%
look: 4 | smell: 3.5 | taste: 3 | feel: 3 | overall: 3

The rear label has dots printed indicating "03/08/18 12:49" and below that "Best before end."

Appearance: The body is a light gold color with tons of visible carbonation. The beer is very hazy. It has a thick fluffy white head with good retention and lacing.

Aroma: It has a spicy hop aroma with a bit of a peppery touch.

Taste: Most of the flavors burst in right at the front and fade slowly out with the carbonation leaving nothing in its trail. The flavor is a very light herbal bay leaf with a touch of cardboard. Not a lot of flavor.

Mouthfeel: A ton of carbonation makes this a very fizzy drink. Although the body is light it has a bit of a thicker feeling on the palate.

Overall: It is decent but it feels very faded and lackluster. It's the kind of beer that leaves you wanting something more from it...worth drinking but definitely not anywhere near my first choice of Belgian Pale Ales. I wouldn't drink it again unless I could get it directly from the abbey.

 974 characters

Photo of John_Beeryman
3.33/5  rDev -14%
look: 3.5 | smell: 3.5 | taste: 3.25 | feel: 3.25 | overall: 3.25

Photo of babaracas
3.7/5  rDev -4.4%
look: 4 | smell: 4 | taste: 3.5 | feel: 3.5 | overall: 3.75

Pours a slightly hazed golden color, billowing dense white head, a good portion of which sticks around; trails a spray of lace down the glass. Smell: coriander, peppery, quite floral... sweet and perfumed, with sugar cookie base. Taste: unripe pear, lemon peel, big spicy and peppery flavors, medicinal note in the finish. Finish is a bit gritty / powdery. Not my choice for an 800th anniversary brew, but it's alright.

 419 characters

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Cuvée Spéciale 800 Ans from Brasserie de l'Abbaye du Val-Dieu
Beer rating: 3.87 out of 5 with 27 ratings