jeffin7 (613) - Silver Spring, Maryland, USA - SEP 29, 2004
3.9 AROMA 8/10 APPEARANCE 3/5 TASTE 8/10 PALATE 3/5 OVERALL 17/20
2004/15.7%ABV Version: Pours a dark red with a medium head that fades slowly. Aroma is of sweet dough and alcohol. Flavor is of sweet dough, caramel, brown sugar with a slight hoppiness behind the huge malt. Very nice sweet, strong brew. The alcohol is present but not overpowering.
Frank (3971) - Chicago, Illinois, USA - SEP 27, 2004
3.9 AROMA 8/10 APPEARANCE 3/5 TASTE 8/10 PALATE 4/5 OVERALL 16/20
UPDATED: OCT 25, 2005 Well, well, well. The hotshots at Avery have upped the ABV on this sucker to 18.1%. We’ll see how that turns out... Pours a nice, deep amber--we’ll call it blood red since the beer is called the Beast but, keep in mind, we’re not calling it blood red because it is actually blood red in color. If you try, you can get a head to form but it’ll be gone faster than your sobriety when your sipping on this monster. Nose is somewhat alcoholic of course but underneath there’s a really good belgian beer--dark, raisin-like malts and a spicey yeast character. This stuff’ll make you howl and breathe fire. There is no hiding that alcohol in there but it works pretty well helping to balance the slightly sweet malty body. If you look for it, there’s a nice inter play between whiskeyish vanilla flavors, spice and deep, deep malt but, in the end, this beast comes across slightly simple because the ghastly amount of alcohol masks a lot of flavor. I’m still digging it hardcore but, then agian, I’m drunk. Did I mention this has a lot of alcohol? I think I might just lay one of these down to see if the alcohol wanes a bit and get drunk again at a later date.
WabashMan (1023) - Noblesville, Indiana, USA - SEP 24, 2004
4.2 AROMA 8/10 APPEARANCE 4/5 TASTE 8/10 PALATE 5/5 OVERALL 17/20
This is a big, beautiful brew with tons of flavor and a warming sensation that lasts. Really quite exceptional.
Shag (2837) - Chattanooga, Tennessee, USA - SEP 23, 2004
4.3 AROMA 9/10 APPEARANCE 4/5 TASTE 8/10 PALATE 4/5 OVERALL 18/20
Shared a bottle with some of the San Diego dirty crew at O’Briens. Well I had most of it, ouch! Well it was a dark red color with a decent head and lacing. The flavor did not show the alcohol as much as I had imagined. The were some vanilla, cherries, whiskey, and alcohol in there. A nice one indeed.
NYHarvey (2153) - New York, New York, USA - SEP 19, 2004
3.1 AROMA 7/10 APPEARANCE 4/5 TASTE 4/10 PALATE 4/5 OVERALL 12/20
Bottle at Yeoman’s Road Pub in Tampa. Poured a deep reddish yellow like melted butter toffe with blood in it. Smell was biting with sweetness and alcohol both very present. Extremely strong alcohol tatse at first sip. There are some sweet notes behind the alcohol, but they never really break away from the brutal alcohol tatse. Reminded me of a Baltic Porter if Satan decided to brew a Baltic Porter. Not a fan.
Jokes (1453) - Chicago, Illinois, USA - SEP 17, 2004
3.9 AROMA 8/10 APPEARANCE 3/5 TASTE 8/10 PALATE 4/5 OVERALL 16/20
Clear, brilliant ruby with an extremely small, off-white head. Intense, lightly toasted and quite sweet malt nose. Big alcohol, lightly toasted bread, chocolate, caramel, molasses, honey and intermitent fruit. The body is full and supple with plenty to offer. The flavor is strong and sweet with a warm, biting alcoholic kick that makes the experience more enjoyable. There is a relatively moderate bitter hop balance that keeps the sweetness from becoming cloying. An interesting beast of a Belgian with great flavors and a spicy yeast strain. The heat may be a bit too warm, but just barely, and the complex malt structure is nearly divine.
JoeM500 (1908) - Crown Point, Indiana, USA - AUG 24, 2004
3.8 AROMA 8/10 APPEARANCE 3/5 TASTE 7/10 PALATE 4/5 OVERALL 16/20
UPDATED: SEP 11, 2004 Bottle (thanks to Floydicus)Huge fig, raisin, date, rum and brown sugar first sip that quickly gives way to a massive hop flavor. It just seems to be missing some sort of complexity, maybe just because it is labeled "Grand Cru" that I was expecting some more magic, but all the flavor is there with a massive firey breath of alcohol at the finish. Interesting big beer!
jaymobrown (1833) - Chicago, Illinois, USA - AUG 24, 2004
3.7 AROMA 8/10 APPEARANCE 3/5 TASTE 7/10 PALATE 3/5 OVERALL 16/20
Alcohol is, of course, very present throughout this brew -- from the nose to the taste, and dominates a lot of the other flavors. Definitely a lot of the "darker" malt flavors being kicked around here. For me it seemed to thick, syrupy, and lacked some of the fruit flavors to really be a grand cru belgian ale. Actually, thought it to be more of a imp. stout; not that this really diminishes anything from this brew. Overall, quite enjoyable to drink.
TChrome (1448) - Bedford, Texas, USA - AUG 13, 2004
4.4 AROMA 8/10 APPEARANCE 4/5 TASTE 9/10 PALATE 5/5 OVERALL 18/20
Beautiful mahogoney color with an initially thick light brown head. The head is quickly consumed, I’m assuming by the massive ABV. Aroma is thick, rich, and intoxicating. There is a lot of complexity here: tons of dark fruit, figs, raisins, lots of candy sugar, and rubbing alcohol, though it is not obtrusive. Flavor is to me, highly delicous. Lots of high sugar flavors, candy sugar, some raisin and prune. Again the alcohol is there, but IMO, highly restrained for this ABV. Must be very careful with this one, my precious, yes very careful. Incredible brew. Two more in cellar for years to come.
krisbierjaeger (844) - dolores, Colorado, USA - AUG 12, 2004
4 AROMA 8/10 APPEARANCE 4/5 TASTE 7/10 PALATE 4/5 OVERALL 17/20
UPDATED: AUG 22, 2008 last spring i actually got to share a few beers with adam avery, who told me tons of amazing things about the preparation of this monstrous libation and the cunning little messages concealed within both the packaging, and within the hypnotic formula of the beer itself. i’d love to share a few of them, but damned if i can remember even one. what i know is that this beer is a fusion: a beer/liqueur crossover. in rating a beer, we typically employ illustrative language: "discriptors", to grapple with flavor likenesses that the brewer has achieved with the simple ingredients of brewing. when we say a beer tastes like peat or pine or piss or leather, usually, those things aren’t really in the beer, it just SEEMS like they are. here, for the most part, the beast smells and tastes exactly like what adam literally put into it: raisins, dates, molasses, turbinado, honey, and ass-kicking proportions of biting hops and eloquent malts and enough yeast in a controlled environment to make alcohol faster than ol’ belzebub’s appalachian still. yet these things have coalesced into a sum greater than the constituent parts: it’s the most port-like non-port beverage i’ve ever tasted. for a scotch drinker, this drink may be overly sugary and even mild. to a beer drinker, used to our 7 and 8 ABVs, the alcohol swings over the goblet like a ghostly ball bat, knocking our senses a little more askew with each sip-- yet we step up again and again willingly to be pummeled by the delicious fullness of sensory engagement. the gorgeous aroma has wonderful smoky aspects, the blackened mesquite satan himself uses in his barbeque-- when he’s cooking to entice the celebrities. it’s like cane sugar resin rode in oak casks with burgandy and bourbon ’till singed by the fires of hell-- it only became denser and more complicated. the label features huge white teeth-- teeth so sharp, you won’t feel them sinking in, yet the damage will be instantaneous. the label also erroneously suggests a malevolent entity-- yet this beast comes and beguiles in the form of warmth and familiarity. true, it fucks with your mind, but this is a gentle beast-- think puff the magic dragon-- he doesn’t ask you to fly planes into buildings, he asks that you love and play, laugh at life, and let the gentle rhythms of nature wash over you-- just like this alcohol is fixin’ to do-- with a holy vengeance.