nick76 (4399) - Tampa, Florida, USA - NOV 22, 2006
The aroma is very yeasty, malty, and citrusy with some herbs. The appearance is tan-gold-orange with a haze and a large foamy head. The flavor is like the aroma with a nice malty finish and some wild yeast. The palate is smooth. Overall it’s a good beer but not a standout. treadyroc (150) - St. Leonard, Maryland, USA - NOV 22, 2006
Maybe I got an old bottle? The beer had no qualities that stood out to me. Very ’meh.’ I can think of a dozen other Belgian Christmas beers that I’d rather have. frink (467) - coquitlam, British Columbia, CANADA - NOV 19, 2006
Rating #400. Cloudy amber with a thick rock solid head. Big yeasty aroma, spicy, kind of remenisent of an abbaye des rocs brune. Very malty flavour, cinnamon, brandy, cherries. Creamy mouthfeel. That’s good drinkin’. BeerPrince (1701) - Vancouver, British Columbia, CANADA - NOV 11, 2006
Amber tinted with orange with loads of tan foam, good lacing. Big aroma of cork, cheese, herbs and spice. Nice full flavour strats with herbs and spices and just the right sweetness, before moving to some citrusy orange and lemon before finishing with a nice hoppy light bitter closing. Nice acidity and peppery texture on the mouth thorughout. Well balanced and quite enjoyable. I’ll be having another one for sure. Walt (2449) - Austin, Texas, USA - OCT 15, 2006
Pour is dark murky amber with a dense off white head...smell is spicey with yeast and pepper...taste is overly sweet and vegetal...disappointed...
beermatrix (1497) - Twin Cities, Minnesota, USA - OCT 2, 2006
Muted glow of dark peachy orange. Huge, plush, fluffy top of yellowy, vanilla stained, foam that lasts and lasts and lasts. Keeping an always present half inch stack nearly the whole session. Impressive. And the lacing is dusted across the glass in a nice etched fashion of tiny snowflakes and frosting.
Aroma is fairly one dimensional with a forward funked powdery yeastiness and dry hay spice. Some slivers and shavings of citric peels note a bit in certain wiffs.
Taste, unfortunately is a bit one dimensional as well. Tangy soured pale fruityness and yeasty funked dryness hits hard and fast leaving a scrapped mouth of dry grass blades, dirty fruits, and an off tartness that leaves it unbalanced in the finish; and throughout most of its run in the flavors.
Feel is pretty active with a fair tug in the sour tartness and has a texture thats a bit unwelcome as it seems to tear into the throat with a razory edge of harsh carbonation. Deposits of tart, dirty citric fruits lay in waste behind a grassy dryness and slight yeasty chalkyness. For what its worth it tends to mellow out some as it sits, but the flavors really never go anywhere, nor peak, nor does its smoothness.
Not all that impressive, with the exception of its looks, a deceptive glass of Belgian ale is to be beheld when opening this one. Crit (3996) - Surrey, British Columbia, CANADA - SEP 18, 2006
Deep amber,large lasting beige head.Intense small bead. Yeasty,lightly musty malt nose.Slightly tart, yeasty,light malt,fruity overtones. Gassy and fizzy goldtwins (4320) - Nesconset, New York, USA - SEP 11, 2006
Poured a hazy amber color with a fair off-white head. Sweet malty aroma with notes of yeast and candy. Yeasty and sweet flavor were what I expected after the aroma. Some spicey notes from the yeast. Lively mouthfeel. Shag (3001) - Chattanooga, Tennessee, USA - SEP 1, 2006
Sampled at KPs fest. A spicy peach aroma. A dry and dusy mouthfeel with a peach and orange flavor. I detect some banana also. Once again fest rating suck but I liked this one regardless ClarkVV (6708) - Boston, Massachusetts, USA - AUG 16, 2006
UPDATED: JUN 26, 2007 2004 bottle consumed on 8/11/06.
Fabulous appearance, as always, from Blaugies, with a rich, tangerine-skin-orange flecked medium-dark beige head that is, of course, perfectly well-retained, slow to recede even an inch and fully coats the glass with lacing.
With a deep inhale, I come away overwhelmed by a thoroughly complex nose. Yeasty, for sure, with plenty of musty notes, hard minerals, damp wood and on the very end, a slightly vegetal, or just extremely corky/musty note that dosent quite sit well with my nose. Whatever it is, it seems quite organic (as opposed to chemical/medicinal) and though I could guess for hours, perhaps it is even a large amount of Special B malt, I really have no idea what it is. Suffice to say it is old, damp, somewhat limpid and I don’t think the near-vegetal nature of it complements the saison style well. Adding to this, and helping to alleviate it somewhat, though not fully, is a plethora of phenol activity, redolent of cinnamon, black pepper, clove, etc...While this certainly helps dry out some of the aforementioned quality, it comes to dominate the finish, and leave a dry, phenolic and rather quick finish to the nose. Malt sweetness shows a mix of raisins, prunes, caramel and medium-dry toffee. Hints of vanilla-flavored cream add a balancing sweetness, but the soggy, old, musty qualities seem to set in too much so from the start, nor does the sweet malt "enliven" things.
The musty, old, cellar-like yeastiness is heavy in the flavor, with an old, mushy raisin quality, hints of cocoa, cinnamon and caramel and vanilla sugars. While the texture certainly provides an engaging carbonation, the body has a slight slickness to it, with more astringent-like phenols on the finish. The odd yeast meatiness, whatever the hell it is, hangs on and battles with the ample maltiness, but the result is just muddled. Some very slight warmth from the alcohol contributes to dryness, while a tartness begins to grow on the palate from the beginning and builds. But it’s almost a grapey-tartness and further muddles things, IMHO.
I don’t know, I’ve now had three bottles and while I certainly see great qualities, and believe there are perfect/near-perfect bottles out there, I can’t seem to find one. They’ve been either too sweet, too phenolic or too "old/musty/vinous". So I’ll keep searching, lord knows Blaugies is phenomenal stuff. 7/5/6/3/13
Original U.S. importation bottle, 750mL, drunk on 12/9/2006
I think these older bottles, with the much more basic labels (pictured at left), are 2002 or 2003 vintages. Anywho, wow, what a difference! The disappointing newer vintages, rather muddled and overly sweet and caramelly share very little in common with this bottle. Tart and quite acidic in the nose, with less gummy, tacky, sweet dark fruits and more dry malt and dry yeast character.
Except for some strong fusel apparency on the finish, this flavor is explosive, with powerful wild yeasts that are difficult to define (not any clear brett or lacto flavors) adding tartness and lots of acidity. Some dark fruits are present, but the malts really help keep things dry as well, and yet add lots of chewy, nearly bready qualities. None of the mushy caramel, as I just mentioned, and a very, very strong, tight carbonation. Vanilla and black pepper phenols combine with a strong earthiness on the finish. Without the fusels and probably with about 2 years less age on this, I can definitely see where Ernest picked up his 5.0 rating. As is, it’s still extremely enjoyable, but for the heavy fusel content. 8/5/7/4/15