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RATINGS: 353   WEIGHTED AVG: 3.74   SEASONAL: Winter   EST. CALORIES: 330   ABV: 11%
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Monster of a beer, shrouded in mystery, brewed once a year. This beer is hopped quadruple-strength, and exoticly spiced.

   AROMA 9/10   APPEARANCE 3/5   TASTE 9/10   PALATE 4/5   OVERALL 17/20
JorisPPattyn (8281) - Ursel, BELGIUM - NOV 29, 2003
Pours extremely viscous, nearly "lijmend" (Sacch. viscosus?); disparate foam, yellowish; opaque dark orange-brown. Very vinous nose, rich & complex; woody, blue grapes, slightly coriander, also parsley. Luscious fruit, bitterish taste, spicey and bitter chocolate. Everything which can be good in a beer. Very hoppy-bitterish palate covering malty richness. Fruity as dark plums, preserved oranges, etc. Warming up, the coriander gives some soupy connotations. Viscosity also in the mouthfeel, very thick & syrupy. Long bitterish, spicey aftertaste (black chocolate with nutmeg and coriander). No barley wine could do better than this. love it. Many thanks to J. Mallett from the brewery for bringing this to Belgium!

   AROMA 7/10   APPEARANCE 3/5   TASTE 8/10   PALATE 3/5   OVERALL 15/20
jeffc666 (1984) - Fairfax, Virginia, USA - JUL 22, 2003
Brewed once a year. I had the 2000 vintage. Very complex. There are many flavors swirling about, malt, hops, lemon, and spices? No flavor dominates, probably due to the age of this vintage. Overall very good. Much like a nice aged barleywine.

   AROMA 8/10   APPEARANCE 3/5   TASTE 8/10   PALATE 4/5   OVERALL 16/20
Kathy (241) - Washington DC, USA - JUL 14, 2003
2000 vintage - Cloudy amber-brown color. Not much head. Floral/perfumey/spicy aroma (like nothing I've ever had before). Lemon drop in the aroma, too. Very spicy ginger and lemon flavor with a caramel finish. Strange. "Exotic." Odd. I respect it, and I rate it pretty well, but I'm not sure I like it that much. It's so different from anything I've had before. I'll have to have this again.

   AROMA 8/10   APPEARANCE 4/5   TASTE 8/10   PALATE 4/5   OVERALL 17/20
Jake Barnes (456) - St. Louis, Missouri, USA - MAR 13, 2003
My first beer of RAF 2003. Reminds me of 3rd Coast Old Ale. A big beer with the characteristic bells malt. Hoppier than 3rdCOA and hints of spice and peppar. Pretty Smooth.

   AROMA 5/10   APPEARANCE 4/5   TASTE 7/10   PALATE 3/5   OVERALL 14/20
JCW (1276) - Cincinnati, Ohio, USA - MAR 7, 2003
UPDATED: JUN 24, 2006 This beer is very alcoholic and spicy. I taste, some malt, a peppery spices, mace?maybe some nutmeg, allspice. Complex and strong tasting. I got a feeling people love it or hate it. I thinks its interesting,but not delicous.

   AROMA 7/10   APPEARANCE 4/5   TASTE 8/10   PALATE 4/5   OVERALL 18/20
cb (810) - Roeland Park, Kansas, USA - MAR 7, 2003
UPDATED: JAN 7, 2004 I'm not a big fan of licorice...especially the black variety. Aroma was definitely of that, but I can appreciate how well done the segue to a taste of smoky/spicy randomness was. Tasted at the RAF, I wrote down crusty & musty...in a good way. Crazy-big, mucho impressivo. Update: 2003 was more sprucy than the cask verstion I had at the '02 RAF. Or maybe it was my palate at the time. A jumble of various unidentifiable herbs. The aged '02 was much deeper and richer in palate and body. The carbonation stayed on the bottom of the glass and resembled fish eggs. Noted licorice and lots of molasses

   AROMA 9/10   APPEARANCE 4/5   TASTE 10/10   PALATE 4/5   OVERALL 19/20
GearHead (32) - Woodridge, Illinois, USA - MAR 5, 2003
They've got citrus, hops, spice, caramel, etc. Amazing!!! You've got to try this one. If heaven were to bless alcohol other than wine it would bless this beer. Who needs food when you got this beer. So much flavor it lives up to Bell's excellence.

   AROMA 9/10   APPEARANCE 4/5   TASTE 8/10   PALATE 4/5   OVERALL 17/20
jaymobrown (1723) - Chicago, Illinois, USA - MAR 4, 2003
Huge malt nose coming through here. Great flavor with some spiced malt, bread, and squash. Had at RAF '03 and was highly impressed.

   AROMA 8/10   APPEARANCE 4/5   TASTE 8/10   PALATE 4/5   OVERALL 17/20
JoeM500 (1906) - Crown Point, Indiana, USA - MAR 4, 2003
Bottled in 2001- shared in 2003. Whoa... what is this? Am I supposed to be so excited about something so strange? Is that thick malty, caramel and spiced pumkin??? Is that anice sprinkled oatmeal cookies dipped in Two-Hearted Ale??? This is amazing, the only beer that I doubled up on at the RAF'03.

   AROMA 8/10   APPEARANCE 4/5   TASTE 8/10   PALATE 4/5   OVERALL 17/20
fraternie (893) - Chicago, Illinois, USA - MAR 3, 2003
UPDATED: MAY 1, 2003 Body and aroma reminiscent of Third Coast Old Ale, I even had to re-verify that this was indeed the elusive Eccentric ale. After being patient, aroma seemed malty but perhaps a bit fruiter than 3CoA. Flavor is simply packed--caramel, raisins, berries, spice. Alcoholic flavor, evident in the aroma as well. Hoppier than 3C0A but not as smooth, alcohol overwhelms flavor more quickly, which was somewhat of a shame, but overall this is an incredibly impressive beer, the jewel of the '03 RAF for me.

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