Hoegaarden Grand Cru | Brouwerij van Hoegaarden

very good
191 Reviews
Hoegaarden Grand CruHoegaarden Grand Cru

Brewed by:
Brouwerij van Hoegaarden

Style: Belgian Strong Pale Ale

Alcohol by volume (ABV): 8.50%

Availability: Year-round

Notes / Commercial Description:
No notes at this time.

Added by BeerAngel on 10-14-2001

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Reviews: 191 | Ratings: 361
Photo of 911CROFT
2.95/5  rDev -26.3%
look: 3.25 | smell: 3.25 | taste: 2.75 | feel: 2.75 | overall: 3

330ml bottle into a tulip. Paid £3.40 for a single bottle.

Pours a dull, hazy, orange-brown coloured body that transforms to a bright golden sunset when held to the light. Near the edges of the glass a small amount of carbonation is visible through the haze, below a swiftly disappearing, foamy, three-finger in height white head that departs without a wisp of lacing.

The modest nose comprises mainly of sweet bread, mild banana esters, light stone fruit, clove, spices and a touch of medicinal alcohol. The taste roughly follows suit, leading with a little banana and sweet white bread, before quickly handing over to dominant phenols and spices. Strong notes of clove, cardamom, pepper and coriander enter alongside an undisguised alcohol presence to quickly overpower the initial fruity flavours and linger long into the finish. In the mouth, moderate carbonation and a medium to full body give a smooth and vaguely creamy feel, while lingering spices and alcohol finish warm and dry on the palate.

Overall this is a disappointing beer. I actually found it hard work to finish the bottle. The fruity esters and spicy phenols are lacking in balance, the body is a touch heavy and under carbonated while (to my tastes at least) the obvious alcohol detracts from taste and pleasure. I can’t say I’d happily part with my own money to try this one again, especially when Duvel is readily available at half the cost.

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Photo of captaincoffee
4.12/5  rDev +3%
look: 3.75 | smell: 4.25 | taste: 4 | feel: 4.25 | overall: 4.25

Picked up as an afterthought along with 100+ other beers on a recent trip to Belgium. Pour was an orange-gold with little head and no lacing. Bottle conditioned Hoegaarden? Interesting....
Nose has nice esters, some malt fruit, and a wee bit of spice. Taste is somewhere between a triple, strong pale, and hefe. Started off thinking it was one-dimentional, but getting lots of depth as it warms. Surprisingly good beer from this brewery.

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Photo of jonmikel
3.77/5  rDev -5.8%
look: 4 | smell: 2.5 | taste: 4.25 | feel: 4.25 | overall: 4

Golden-orange look. Little amount of foam, less than 0,5 cm. The smell isn't huge. The mouthfeel is very good with traces of alcohol (not too much) at the end. I like the taste.

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Photo of Andrewharemza
4/5  rDev 0%
look: 4 | smell: 4 | taste: 4 | feel: 4 | overall: 4

From bottle. Pours golden with short lasting white head. Lots of spices and Belgian yeast up front with cloves, banana, dough. Sweet with herbal bitter finish. Very nice.

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Photo of jrsaffert
4.17/5  rDev +4.3%
look: 3.75 | smell: 4.25 | taste: 4.25 | feel: 4.25 | overall: 4

I have to say that this beer surprised me. My GF loves Hoegaarden Wit, so I got this for her as somewhat of a joke gift. I enjoyed it more than I expected to.

Has a nice fruity yeast characteristic, but finishes dry. Low to medium spiciness too, cloves and a hint of pepper. Overall, a very nice beer.

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Photo of Refloosh
4.99/5  rDev +24.8%
look: 4.75 | smell: 5 | taste: 5 | feel: 5 | overall: 5

I was hesitant at first due to the stigma of knowing hoegaarden wit was just an average beer but this truly is a wonderful beer. It has banana and lemon notes associated with a weizenbock but has a spice characteristic that creates a great balance and smooth finish. A true classic and go to beer

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Photo of bodhisagan
4.87/5  rDev +21.8%
look: 5 | smell: 4.75 | taste: 5 | feel: 4.75 | overall: 4.75

Wow. I love this beer. I have long enjoyed Belgian white beers. This one is definitely the best in the class that I have tasted. I would put this just above Allagash White. Both are amazing. If you like Belgian white beers or Hefeweizen, you can't go wrong with this one. It's also quite high in alcohol, yet it doesn't have the burn of a dubbel or tripel. I agree with the Bros, this is world class.

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Photo of drmeto
4.4/5  rDev +10%
look: 4.25 | smell: 4.75 | taste: 4.25 | feel: 4.5 | overall: 4.25

-huge banana
-pilsner-esque honey
-spicy pepper and slight coriander
-alcohol very well hidden
-slightly floral hops,spicy and sweet finish
Really digged this one

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Photo of SmashPants
4.41/5  rDev +10.3%
look: 4.25 | smell: 4.5 | taste: 4.5 | feel: 4.25 | overall: 4.25

Format: a standard 330mL brown bottle with a stylish macro label.

Appearance: poured into a weizen glass - a strong, cloudy deep yellow with fine carbonation. A fantastic white head pops up to an inch before slowly dropping to a creamy half-finger. great lacing down the glass.

Aroma: funnily enough, this is similar to the standard Hoegaarden but somehow better. The citrus is heavier and stronger, with citrus zest and heavier wheat aroma. Very nice.

Taste: citrus fruit zest and heavy wheat again, with orchard fruits and spices. A very nice wheat beer.

Aftertaste: some bitterness comes through, with spices and more of those orchard fruits. A lovely beer that hides its ABV quite well.

Mouth feel: moderate- to-fuller in feel with a moderate carbonation. Quite mouth-filling, and easy to put away.

Overall: one of the better wheat beers I have had to date. A great combination of heavy flavours, and a very drinkable beer. It's a bit dangerous as it disguises its 8.5% ABV quite well. Approximately AU$120 for a case of 24 x 330mL - I'll have to have a 4-pack every now and then, as I am but a pauper.

 1,112 characters

Photo of flipper2gv
4.07/5  rDev +1.8%
look: 4 | smell: 4.5 | taste: 4 | feel: 3.5 | overall: 4

A: Cloudy light amber color with an off white head with decent retention and lacing. The carbonation doesn't look like typical belgian carbonation, which makes me thinks they didn't use traditional yeast on the beer.

S: If the look wasn't typical belgium, the smell is. There is a strong funky aroma that I didn't think I would find here, but I guess is the result of the wheat and whatever yeasts they used. There is a surprisingly strong tart aroma too, makes me think of lemon juice and green apple.Some cilantro and very light cloves are there, but no malts in sight.

T: Much more down to earth and typical belgian pale. Much stronger pale malts taste with strong sweetness that makes me think of candi sugar and light honey. To quote another review, this has a lot of passionfruit in this. There is also quite a good amount of cilantro and cloves in this and a light amount of tartness that was in the smell. Deceiving beer to say the least.

M: Medium feel, but definitely not a typical belgian feel. This is not traditional yeasts as expected.

O: This is a solid beer. Really well made and very well balanced. I feel it is slightly underrated because of the brand name, but this is really good.

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Photo of Slatetank
3.85/5  rDev -3.8%
look: 4 | smell: 4 | taste: 3.75 | feel: 3.5 | overall: 4

I had this at the Belgian Beer Corner in Tomorrowland, served chilled from the bottle in a matching Hoegaarden Grand Cru Tulip.

The color is deep golden with thick haze and white head with fine bead and retention is good.
The smell is spiced with pear and apple from yeast with wheat malt foundation and light spice w/ tropical fruit ester and mild alcohol aroma with a toasted grain odor. The feel is good with spiced and a bit strong with yeast dominance and medium carbonation with spicy strong effect with mostly dry finish.

The taste brings a nutmeg-like woody spice with pear and mild nutty malt with light tangy yeast balanced by a slight alcohol creeping in mid palate wtih subtle wheat sweetness and toasted flavor with a bit of pepper and some other indistinct spice w/ date and light sweet caramel w/ warming accent of sugar in the finish which has a flavor of alcohol drying the palate. This is a very good ale, better than I expected but a little strong alcohol-wise in the taste with heavy yeast and spice with some grain in the taste, but enjoyable in general with nice combination of yeast and spice.

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Photo of chogm54
4.43/5  rDev +10.8%
look: 4.5 | smell: 4.5 | taste: 4.75 | feel: 3.25 | overall: 4.25

330ml bottle into a tulip glass. BB date of Oct 2014.

A - cloudy amber colour, pours a thick white creamy head than slowly fades into a nice lacing. Some fine sediment that settles quickly.

S - fruity (peach) aroma on a yeasty base, with a sting of clove and pepper. As the beer is emptied, the yeast flavours start overpowering (probably to be expected given the amount of sediment left).

T - first sip is amazingly neutral, before a big yeasty malt (which a huge wheat tinge, like a witbeer) surge. The fruitness comes through towards the end, and linges for a while. And what flavours - orange, peach and banana are all there, with a hint of grape. Bitterness comes in and out, but is noticeable in the aftertaste as is a touch of clove and coriander. Interesting

M - thick body, slightly oily texture, alcohol is well hidden with a long aftertaste. Very low carbonation - a bit too low.

O - much better than the standard Hoegaarden, but there are touches of witbeer in here. The fruity and spice taste and variability kept me back at this for more sips, the only (very slightly) negative comment is the very low carbonation.

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Photo of patre_tim
3.97/5  rDev -0.7%
look: 4 | smell: 3.75 | taste: 4 | feel: 4.25 | overall: 4

A: Cloudy golden with a few round chunks of yeast floating within, little fine carbonation, 2 finger of creamy white head.

S: Fruity, apple sauce, apples, slight sharp cheddar bite, all that you look for in this style.

T: Follows the nose. Very dry, light sweetness, phenols, fruity with a hint of apples, cheddar bite.

M: Smooth medium body, medium high fine bubbled carbonation, dry finish.

O: It’s a fine beer. Feels like a perfect version of this style. Its great, no real faults and for that I will rate it higher, but nothing really interesting here. Feels like I’ve had this brew a dozen times. At that, its flawless. BBD is September 12, 2014, bottled on Dec 12, 2012.

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Photo of admiral
3.94/5  rDev -1.5%
look: 4 | smell: 3.75 | taste: 4 | feel: 4 | overall: 4

excellent beer that stands up well against any other Belgian Strong Pale Ale in the World right now.

Aroma: Belgian yeast and spice

Taste: clove, spice, pepper with some slight cinnamon

Overall: A well balanced, smooth and tasty Belgian Strong Pale Ale, that is enjoyable all year round

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Photo of dwren89
4.51/5  rDev +12.8%
look: 4.5 | smell: 4 | taste: 4.75 | feel: 4.75 | overall: 4.5

Appearance: hazy, orangey amber gold. Foamy white head

Aroma: wheat aroma with banana and clove,

Taste: rich, thick Belgian wit taste with notes of banana and clove,

Mouthfeel: smooth, medium carbonation, medium body

Overall Impression: a richer and fuller version of the classic wit style. Using darker malt, and fuller and more satisfying taste and mouthfeel is achieved.

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Photo of spoony
4.21/5  rDev +5.3%
look: 4.25 | smell: 4.5 | taste: 4 | feel: 4.25 | overall: 4.25

From a 330 ml bottle (dated October 16, 2014) into a tulip. Reviewed from notes dated May 24, 2013.

A-The brew is cloudy and apricot in color. A substantial, fine carbonation keeps the fat one-finger off-white colored head up for a while. Nice looking beer.

S-The smell is full of bright, intense lemon. Behind the lemon is spicy grain flavor. Some fruity, warming alcohol is noticeable but fits well with the flavor. There is a good bit of spice that comes out as the beer warms.

T-The taste is spiced orange, lemon, banana, with fruity, slightly sweet alcohol and pale malt lying underneath it all. There is a bit of bitterness and grass that creeps in on the mid-palate and lasts to the finish. Flavor is milder than the smell.

M-The feel is light to medium body with a crisp and assertive carbonation (for a Belgian).

O-This beer is a nice surprise. I wasn't entirely sure what to expect, but this beer provides a nice, high-octane summer drink. The lemon and orange flavors are intense, but this brew is not simply a high-ABV wit. There is some real flavor and balance here. Nicely done.

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Photo of metter98
3.96/5  rDev -1%
look: 3.75 | smell: 4 | taste: 4 | feel: 3.75 | overall: 4

A: The beer is hazy golden yellow in color and has a moderate amount of carbonation. It pored with a finger high white head that died down, leaving a thin layer of bubbles covering the surface and a collar around the edge of the glass.
S: Light to moderate aromas of fruity esters, pale malts and yeast are present in the nose.
T: The taste very much follows the smell and also has some hints of spices towards the finish.
M: It feels a bit more than medium-bodied and a little dry on the palate with a moderate amount of carbonation.
O: This beer manages to hide its alcohol rather well considering its strength so it is rather easy to drink. It is a pretty good representation of the style.

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Photo of bustinwheels
4.85/5  rDev +21.3%
look: 3.5 | smell: 4.75 | taste: 5 | feel: 5 | overall: 5

This has always been one of my all time favorite beers. The orange corriander gives it a unique flavor and sometimes I forget that I'm drinking beer. For me, it's the Champagne of Beers! I like it so much I recycled the bottle so I will never forget it!

Check it out, copy and paste this in your address bar:

Cheers my friends!


 448 characters

Photo of FLima
4.13/5  rDev +3.3%
look: 3.25 | smell: 4 | taste: 4.25 | feel: 4.25 | overall: 4.25

Hazy orange golden color with a thick head with decent retention.
Delicious aroma yeast, banana, vanilla and orange, though more elegant than most witbier.
Malty and spicy flavor with good complexity, a bit fruity with notes of perfume, vanilla, coriander and citrus. Aftertaste is dry and condimented with some bitterness.
Medium body with medium carbonation. Alcohol is in harmony with the beer.
Very tasteful witbier or Belgian blond ale, or whatever it is, I really liked it. That is a whole different league than their regular stuff.

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Photo of MattSweatshirt
3.5/5  rDev -12.5%
look: 3.5 | smell: 3.5 | taste: 3.5 | feel: 3.5 | overall: 3.5

Not much of a white head but lots of bubbles moving through this hazy golden beer filled with sediment.
Smells very fruity and bready with notes of banana and orange and spice.
The taste follows suit with banana, peppery spiciness, and some sweetness. There is some warming alcohol.
Lots of bubbles pelt the tongue. Medium-light bodied.
Doesn't come across any better than the standard Hoegaarden.

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Photo of NielZ
3.97/5  rDev -0.7%
look: 4 | smell: 4.5 | taste: 3.5 | feel: 4.5 | overall: 4

33cl bottle at home

A: Big head with a good color which lasts very long.
Smell is great, when you put the glass closer to your nose it smells like alcohol.

S Fruits and spices.

T Banana, coriander, wheat and some hints of oranges. The finish lasts long and is a bit dry.

M Chewy and smooth.

O Nice one, its nice in balance with the alcohol & fruits

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Photo of Jetulio
3.97/5  rDev -0.7%
look: 3.5 | smell: 4 | taste: 4 | feel: 4 | overall: 4

33 cl bottle poured into Big Tulip glass (Gulden Draak glass)
App/ hazy yellow colour with a big off-white head (3 fingers)
S/ malt, alcohol, oranges
T/ alcohol and lemon with notes of malt and sweetness.
M/ medium body and carbonation. Refreshing in mouth, Long aftertaste
O/ well balanced, nice Belgian ale, maybe not so complex as others but very refreshing . Good value.

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Photo of VWBuggirl
3.4/5  rDev -15%
look: 2.5 | smell: 2.5 | taste: 4 | feel: 3.5 | overall: 3.5

A: This poured a very dark golden color that even maintained a haziness even after settling. There was almost no head and what there was disappeared quickly leaving zero lacing. I feel this is a bit darker than what a BSPA should be.

S: Initially I smell alcohol. That fades after a second into banana. It is very yeast forward on the nose.

T: The alcohol isn't as present as the smell indicates. I get nice banana flavors, but it isn't overdone. It isn't a very multidimensional flavor, but it is good and tasty with its strong malt backbone. There are even hints of clove in the finish.

M: Appropriate to style, with a nice crispness I expect from the brewer. The moderate carbonation complements the flavors well.

O: I generally like this beer. The price is right and it is refreshing. It isn't the best of its style, but it is drinkable and Hoegaarden pulled off a good example of the style.

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Photo of ISkiSquallywood
3.22/5  rDev -19.5%
look: 3 | smell: 3.5 | taste: 3 | feel: 3 | overall: 3.5

A: Light butterscotch color with a suspended cloudy sediment.

S: Predominant orange peel with a background of banana and baking spices and slight suggestions of tropical fruit.

T & M: Drinking this beer reminds me of eating a slice of freshly baked banana bread. There's a thick mouthfeel, with explosive, but soft carbonation, that gives me the impression that I'm eating a meal. Bananas are the major player in the flavor profile, but a little bit of caramel comes through on the finish.

O: I think they went overboard on the banananess, but in fairness I'm drinking this at a slightly higher temp (maybe around 50-55F). Perhaps a cooler serving temperature would show better. The carbonation style isn't up my alley - too foamy.

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Photo of Hoppsbabo
3.93/5  rDev -1.8%
look: 3.5 | smell: 3 | taste: 4 | feel: 5 | overall: 4.5

A: Dark golden cloudy pale ale with a nice white head. Lots of sediment.

S: Sharp coriander seeds.

T: Sharp. Coriander seeds. No banana. Excellent Aftertaste and with the beautiful carbonation reminds me of Weihenstephan, only stronger in flavour of course. I think it's very good.

O: Very decent, but I can't stand coriander so I tipped most of it away.

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Hoegaarden Grand Cru from Brouwerij van Hoegaarden
4 out of 5 based on 361 ratings.
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