Ofortuna (322) - Grafton, Wisconsin, USA - OCT 4, 2008
3.1 AROMA 6/10 APPEARANCE 3/5 TASTE 6/10 PALATE 3/5 OVERALL 13/20
Pours a decent cap of head with a bit of saaz coming up in the aroma. Quite a bit of sweetness in here. The esters jump in, but I get a little phenolic character as well. Adequate body and mouthfeel, but there’s an ever-present amount of sweetness that just brings this out of balance. Not a bad drink, but I wonder if the "belgian-style" came as a result of accidentally fermenting at too high of a temperature and incorrectly thinking "lot’s of esters" equate to "belgian-style"?
DocJitsu (1632) - Pensacola, Florida, USA - JUL 31, 2016
2.6 AROMA 5/10 APPEARANCE 3/5 TASTE 5/10 PALATE 3/5 OVERALL 10/20
Pours a classic golden with a soft, white head. Specks of veggie matter are suspended throughout the beer. Faint Belgian notes on the nose. Moderately sweet with the bitterness of Belgian yeast expressing late.
Nekronos (4056) - Xalapa, MEXICO - JUL 10, 2016
3.5 AROMA 6/10 APPEARANCE 3/5 TASTE 6/10 PALATE 3/5 OVERALL 17/20
Very nice and special. Too strong but nicely robust. Quite dark in golden features it was too.
oldrtybastrd (5000) - Fort Walton Beach, Florida, USA - MAY 5, 2016
3.2 AROMA 7/10 APPEARANCE 3/5 TASTE 6/10 PALATE 3/5 OVERALL 13/20
Pours a pale hazy golden yellow color. Aromas of yeast, some fruit and spice. Taste is yeasty and medicinal, can really taste the alcohol in this one.
ChadPolenz (1676) - Lakeland, Florida, USA - DEC 16, 2015
3.7 AROMA 7/10 APPEARANCE 4/5 TASTE 7/10 PALATE 4/5 OVERALL 15/20
One of the best parts of this job is re-reviewing a beer that was originally bad, but I now find to be pretty good. I originally reviewed Holy Mackerel Special Golden Ale back in 2010 and was not impressed by it. In retrospect it was probably just a poorly-handled bottled. Drinking it in 2015 I find it to be a surprisingly solid Belgian Strong Pale Ale. It has all the qualities you want in the style; it just doesn’t go above and beyond is all.
I poured a 12oz bottle into a tulip glass. I couldn’t decipher the bottling code, though the label bears a 2015 vintage indication. It cost $2.49 ($0.21 per ounce).
Appearance: Dark gold to orange in color. Body is initially quite clear with consistent carbonation visible at all times. Pours to a fairly nominal, white, foamy head which retains and laces fairly well.
Smell: The usual Belgian characteristics of banana, clove and general spice; only mild.
Taste: Looking back at it, I’m surprised I disliked this beer so much when I first tried it. Though not exactly a shining example of the style, I will say it at least conforms to the style pretty well. Just like the nose, there’s flavors of banana, clove, cinnamon, and apple cider in the palette. Though some of those components might be due to flaws of some sort. It’s sweet but not overly so. The spiciness from the yeast helps to balance it out, though I don’t get much in the way of hop distinctiveness other than a subtle, dry bitterness. Alcohol is noticeable and creates for slight rum-like flavor, but it’s tolerable.
Drinkability: Though quite big at 8.5% ABV, Holy Mackerel Special Golden Ale is not a challenge to drink. Effervescent to be sure, though I find the carbonation to complement the palate quite well. It helps accentuate the spiciness. There’s warmth from the alcohol, but it is not distracting or burning. It finishes rather dry, too, which is nice.
rumproasts (4862) - Grand Rapids, Michigan, USA - JUL 7, 2015
3.3 AROMA 6/10 APPEARANCE 4/5 TASTE 7/10 PALATE 3/5 OVERALL 13/20
Bottle. Golden orange with small head. Reminds me of a Tripel. Sweet with Belgian spice. Decent.
ICEatALAMO (1299) - Troy, Michigan, USA - JAN 23, 2015
3.9 AROMA 7/10 APPEARANCE 4/5 TASTE 8/10 PALATE 4/5 OVERALL 16/20
Bottle '11 vintage. The pour is a dull hazy orange. The aroma is belgian yeast, with plum notes. The taste is bold belgian ale. This nails the style and maybe the age has done this very well.
---Rated via Beer Buddy for iPhone
blackflag321 (632) - Lansing, Michigan, USA - DEC 14, 2014
3 AROMA 7/10 APPEARANCE 3/5 TASTE 6/10 PALATE 3/5 OVERALL 11/20
Draft with meal. Okay strong, golden ale. But not one I will need to try again.
elbernays (1211) - Dublin, IRELAND - OCT 23, 2014
2.8 AROMA 6/10 APPEARANCE 3/5 TASTE 5/10 PALATE 3/5 OVERALL 11/20
Bottle from Kings supermarket orlando. Pours cloudy yellow. Aroma is banana, bread, yeast. Flavour follows nose. Light body. Short finish. Not great.
NallePalle (488) - Uppsala, SWEDEN - FEB 20, 2014
3 AROMA 6/10 APPEARANCE 3/5 TASTE 6/10 PALATE 3/5 OVERALL 12/20
Bottle, restaurant in Fort Lauderdale FL. Worked nice with Mexican-style food.
frlrv1020 (88) - Miami, Florida, USA - FEB 4, 2014
3.8 AROMA 7/10 APPEARANCE 3/5 TASTE 8/10 PALATE 4/5 OVERALL 16/20
Not as good as Mack in Black but excellent nonetheless. Fruity aroma, we'll balanced. Peach and banana linger on the palate. Medium body.