RateBeer
overall
77
86
style
Serve in Stem glass, Tulip

bottled
common

on tap
available

Regional Distribution

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RATINGS: 704   WEIGHTED AVG: 3.31   IBU: 24   EST. CALORIES: 177   ABV: 5.9%
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COMMERCIAL DESCRIPTION
This French-style country ale is deep amber in color. With a toasty, sweet caramel start, it finishes with just enough hops to clean off the palate. Bon Appetit!


3.6
   AROMA 7/10   APPEARANCE 4/5   TASTE 7/10   PALATE 4/5   OVERALL 14/20
argo0 (11805) - Washington DC, USA - JUL 2, 2003
(draft): Clear copper body with small creamy off-white head. Aroma is medium sweet, floral. Taste is same, with minimal bitterness. Medium body. Very pleasant beer.

3.4
   AROMA 8/10   APPEARANCE 2/5   TASTE 7/10   PALATE 3/5   OVERALL 14/20
BBB63 (6292) - La Porte, Indiana, USA - JUN 29, 2003
Tap at Clark St. in Chicago. Amber hue with little head and no lacing. Medium-bodied. Sweet malty, raisin. pear, and touch of pine on the nose. Good balance taste, minor fruity aftertaste. Creamy and soft mouthfeel. A very comfortable beer and moderately interesting. Would drink it again.

3.8
   AROMA 8/10   APPEARANCE 4/5   TASTE 8/10   PALATE 3/5   OVERALL 15/20
loweredsixth (946) - Clovis, California, USA - JUN 18, 2003
Pours a clear amber color with a tight tan head. The aroma was at first slightly sour. Once it settled the aroma included woody, toasted grains, caramel, musty tones, and a nice herbal character. The flavor was more toasty...solid malt background, burnt peanuts, and a gentle earthiness. Bubbly, lively feel with a crisp, but wet, finish.

3
   AROMA 7/10   APPEARANCE 3/5   TASTE 6/10   PALATE 2/5   OVERALL 12/20
MartinT (8247) - Montreal, Quebec, CANADA - JUN 8, 2003
UPDATED: MAR 6, 2006 First sample, on tap in Chicago:
Resinous hop hormones in a heavy caramel anatomy...A buttery cartilage handles a powerful, bitter honey bravado...Unreasonable alcoholic protusions pierce a nutty oil and almost spoil the feel...3.7/5

Second sample, bottled this time, a few years later:
Cleansed blood orange hues under a meager crown of foam...Caramel fruitiness and grapefruity aromatic hoppiness create a simple perfume...Maltiness is so simple, the fieldberries cannot salvage it; the mouthfeel is therefore lazy, and sleep-inducing...It feels like they’ve filtered all possible flavor particles...2.6/5

3.7
   AROMA 7/10   APPEARANCE 4/5   TASTE 7/10   PALATE 4/5   OVERALL 15/20
Indra (2675) - Overland Park, Kansas, USA - MAY 1, 2003
Lightly sweet, biscuity and caramelized maltiness in the aroma, with some lingering herbal spiciness. Medium orange-red in color, with many suspended particulates and very fine bubbles composing the slight head. Interesting blend of flavors here, some caramel, light breadiness, tobacco and sweetness meeting some tangy, fruity, spicy and leafy, fresh hop flavors. The malts here are quite European in character, and the hops are present in very American quantities, helping to make this a unique interpretation. This balance is maintained throughout. Gentle but interesting beer.

3.7
   AROMA 7/10   APPEARANCE 4/5   TASTE 7/10   PALATE 3/5   OVERALL 16/20
badgerben (4529) - Blaine, Minnesota, USA - MAY 1, 2003
UPDATED: JUN 6, 2008 Original Rating, May 1, 2003: Color is a cloudy amber. Small head that disapates rapidly. I can’t quite place the smell, perhaps a toasted malt. Taste is a little fruity and bitter with a little hops. Not quite sure what to make of it as I’ve never had a Biere de Garde before. I like it good enough. 7/4/7/3/15 Re-rating, June 5, 2008: I FINALLY get to retry this one. Copper color with a thin head. Very malty aroma. Some toasted and biscuty notes. A little yeast. The flavor is very bready, sweet malt and full of yeast. A little spiciness and some apple fruitiness. As solid as I remember it.

1.5
   AROMA 3/10   APPEARANCE 3/5   TASTE 3/10   PALATE 2/5   OVERALL 4/20
bac080 (398) - Bloomington, Illinois, USA - APR 29, 2003
This was not so good. A very nice label but the beer itself wasn't very smooth or enjoyable.

3.2
   AROMA 6/10   APPEARANCE 3/5   TASTE 7/10   PALATE 4/5   OVERALL 12/20
kujo9 (1093) - North Ridgeville, Ohio, USA - APR 8, 2003
Pours crystal clear amber color with minimal head retention of the slighly off white head. Aromas of toasty malt, caramel, a slight apricot fruitiness, a little earthy, and a slight hop, but it's missing some of the typical aromas of a biere de garde. Flavor is leathery, sweetly malty at first, toasty, and fruity with a dry, bitter finish. Still missing a lot for a biere de garde, but I'm not completely dissapointed. Mouthfeel is a little on the light side, moderately low carbonation, and a slightly dry, borderline astringent sensation on the tongue. Not a session beer in my book, nor is it a true biere de guard from what my understanding is of the style, it's missing that barnyard, leathery, aroma and flavor, and it's a little too dark and clear, but it is drinkable nonetheless, but not a favorite of mine by any stretch of the imagination.

3.7
   AROMA 7/10   APPEARANCE 4/5   TASTE 7/10   PALATE 4/5   OVERALL 15/20
Nuffield (3727) - Roseville, Minnesota, USA - APR 8, 2003
Interesting and enjoyable. Deep amber color, clinging head. Suggestions of fruit in the nose, then woody, musty flavors, like this was stuck in a cellar to hide it from advancing German armies and only now has been rediscovered. Quick finish until a late bitterness kicks in. Nice--I think this would be my preference for a session beer if it was available to me more regularly. (on tap, Clark Street Ale House, Chicago, IL)

3.8
   AROMA 7/10   APPEARANCE 3/5   TASTE 8/10   PALATE 4/5   OVERALL 16/20
DrnkMcDermott (2855) - Downers Grove, Illinois, USA - APR 7, 2003
UPDATED: APR 11, 2005 Bottled. Great stuff. Nice malty aroma behind a head that disappears a little too quickly. Taste of orange and some light spiciness comes through, finishes off with a note of red wine.
Re-rate, 4/10/05. Okay, this was one of my earlier ratings, and I finally had a second bottle from my original sixer (others have gone out in trade). My impressions still hold true, but it’s just not worth the 4.1 I first assigned. A slight note of brett mars the second sampling, but this is a two-year old bottle. I had taken the name of the style literally and was cellaring it outside my fridge, probably not a good idea for a 5.9% beer.


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