Lore (2563) - Budapest, HUNGARY - DEC 26, 2014
4.3 AROMA 9/10 APPEARANCE 4/5 TASTE 9/10 PALATE 4/5 OVERALL 17/20
amber colour, moderate sized off-white head, which lasts for several minutes; aroma of dried fruits (peach, some raisin), hints of apple, biscuit, caramel, wooden notes, earthy-wine cellar-like yeast, maybe some vanilla and alcohol; taste of raisin, peach, intensive malty sweetness, some apple and spicy alcohol; much more complex than the simple Bush Ambrée
Bozo_skeleton (1136) - Grenoble, FRANCE - DEC 18, 2014
4.1 AROMA 8/10 APPEARANCE 4/5 TASTE 8/10 PALATE 4/5 OVERALL 17/20
Orangée, ruby, belle carbo collet fin et persistant.
Aromes complexes, subtil mélange d’orange, caramel, bois, whisky et quelques notes aigres.
Vive et chaude en bouche, les notes d’agrumes viennent se fondre dans le caramel de la finale. Le taux d’alcool ne passe pas inaperçu...
Alengrin (5105) - BELGIUM - AUG 8, 2014
3.9 AROMA 8/10 APPEARANCE 5/5 TASTE 8/10 PALATE 4/5 OVERALL 14/20
UPDATED: OCT 29, 2016 ’Tripel’ being interpreted here as ’bottle conditioned’ (as classic Belgian tripels usually are so they have a point there), this refermented version of Bush Ambrée was launched in 2008 to celebrate the 75th birthday of the basic beer, which was simply called ’Bush Beer’ until the arrival of its blonde sister in 1998. That blonde version too was honoured with a similar ’tripel’ version in 2008 and I had both of them in that year, shared with imdownthepub (identifying himself as a Ratebeer editor before I was even on Ratebeer myself) and his wife at a Ghent café back then; since my notes of that tasting session were a bit too concise for a beer of this stature, I am re-rating it now from a bottle bought at a Carrefour supermarket. The luxury 75 cl bottle with cork opens with a lot of pressure, but shows no sign of gushing. Almost snow white, moussy, frothy and quite dense, thick head leaving thick patches of lacing here and there, slowly showing gaps in the middle but still very stable for a 12% ABV beer; warm orange robe with slight coppery hue, amber indeed, clear but teeming with small protein flocks and dead yeast cells right from the start, turning a cloudy, slightly brownish-hued amber with deposit. Clearly a somewhat older bottle, but I have no idea for how long it has been standing on the shelves - unfortunately bottling dates, in spite of Zythos’ efforts, are still not obligatory in Belgium; best before date reads March 2019, so this bottle could well be two years old. Strong aroma of marmelade, butterscotch, Grand Marnier, candied banana and even bubblegum (isoamylacetate), soap, canned apricot, sweet peanuts, vanilla sugar, cognac, honey, ’jenever’, tulips, ripe pear, pineapple, mandarin peel, orange candy, fresh toast, hints of liquorish candy, white chocolate, nail polish remover (probably just phenols), lavender, old dry aniseed even, bath foam, cloves. Very sweet onset, candied orange, lots of banana ester, residual white candi sugar sweetness and canned apricots in sugar syrup, but showing a soft counterbalance of berry-like sourishness as well, enhanced by a minerally, sharpish but not too coarse carbonation; fruitiness and lingering sugary or even honeyish sweetness accompany the middle phase as well, full but slick and smooth with slightly coarsening carbo, very caramelly, butterscotch-like with a nutty accent, even ever so lightly toasted in the end but remaining sweet. Malt sweetness along with that initial sugary sweetness prevail in the finish, but are confronted there with a strong, wry, whisky- and Cointreau-like alcohol flavor and -effect, heating up the back of the mouth and leaving some astringency on the root of the tongue, as is also the case with the regular and Noël versions in this brand. Some lightly spicy and grassy hop bitterness also shows up, providing balance, as well as a typical, eventually very earthy ’yeast bitterness’, but sweetness and booze dominate. One slow sipper for those who are into strong, sweet, phenolic and estery Belgians, basically the Belgian version of the Anglo-Saxon barley wine concept. A tad too sweet and certainly too alcoholic for my personal taste, but nevertheless a ’big’ beer with a certain elegance; the refermentation does add a layer of additional complexity to the basic beer, which is, whether you like it or not, one of those great classics in 20th century Belgian beer culture. Recommended over the regular version, as far as I’m concerned, but again, you will really have to like banana ester, spicy phenols and other Belgian yeast effects, because those are clearly more prevalent in this refermented version than in the filtered regular version.
Celest (137) - - MAY 28, 2014
2.6 AROMA 6/10 APPEARANCE 3/5 TASTE 6/10 PALATE 3/5 OVERALL 8/20
Amber copper beer. Alchool, fruits, sugar, spices, yeast. Medium body. Same notes but too alchoolic
MrTipple (4321) - London, Greater London, ENGLAND - MAY 25, 2014
3.5 AROMA 7/10 APPEARANCE 3/5 TASTE 7/10 PALATE 4/5 OVERALL 14/20
Aroma: caramel malts, grains, cereals. Appearance: hazy amber, small white head. Taste: medium sweet. Palate: sugary sweets expanding, light alcohol notes, caramel. Overall: very nice (and strong) Belgian Strong Ale. Bottle at Les Halles, Ypres.
RexTalionis (3705) - FINLAND - APR 18, 2014
3.6 AROMA 7/10 APPEARANCE 3/5 TASTE 8/10 PALATE 3/5 OVERALL 15/20
Bottle 75 cl. Pours copper in color with a foamy off-white head. Garden fruityness, malty notes and sweet brown sugary notes in aroma, some flowery summer meadow as well. Bit of orange fruityness in taste along with sweetish notes as in brown sugar with hints of some biting spicyness too.
milo91hd (206) - Lecce, ITALY - APR 5, 2014
3.5 AROMA 7/10 APPEARANCE 4/5 TASTE 8/10 PALATE 4/5 OVERALL 12/20
Bottiglia da 750, colore ambrato scuro con una schiuma poco persistente e fina, l’aroma richiama molto la frutta e il vino, al sapore risalta molto il malto e lo speziato poi si sentono tutti i suoi 12% di ABV, forse anche troppo per i miei gusti
superspak (5306) - Michigan, USA - APR 1, 2014
4.2 AROMA 8/10 APPEARANCE 4/5 TASTE 9/10 PALATE 4/5 OVERALL 17/20
750 ml bottle into tulip glass, best before 2015. Pours moderately cloudy deep orange copper color with a 1-2 finger fairly dense off white head with solid retention, that reduces to a thin lace cap that lingers. Light spotty soapy lacing clings on the glass, with a fair amount of streaming carbonation. Aromas of big golden raisin, plum, fig, cherry, pear, apple, caramel, candi sugar, toast, biscuit, clove, pepper, herbal, and yeast earthiness. Very nice aromas with good balance and complexity of fruity/spicy yeast and malt sweetness; with great strength. Taste of big golden raisin, plum, fig, pear, apple, caramel, candi sugar, toast, biscuit, clove, pepper, herbal, floral, and yeast earthiness. Lingering notes of golden raisin, plum, fig, pear, apple, caramel, candi sugar, toast, biscuit, clove, pepper, herbal, and yeast earthiness on the finish for a while. Fantastic complexity and big robustness of fruity/spicy yeast and deep malt flavors; with a great malt/yeast flavor balance and zero cloying sweetness after the finish. Medium carbonation and fairly full bodied; with a smooth, slick, and lightly syrupy mouthfeel that is nice. Alcohol is very well hidden with only a light warming present after the finish. Overall this is an awesome Belgian strong ale! All around great complexity and robustness of fruity/spicy yeast ester and deep malt sweetness; and very smooth to sip on for the big ABV. A highly enjoyable offering.
MoritzF (9759) - Ottobrunn, GERMANY - MAR 4, 2014
3.6 AROMA 7/10 APPEARANCE 2/5 TASTE 7/10 PALATE 4/5 OVERALL 16/20
(bottle, 75cl) Slightly hazy, amber coloured hue with floaties and a short and off-white foamy head. Delicately toasted malty aroma with notes of caramel, nuts, phenolic spices from behind and a slightly vinous fruity touch. Moderately sweet and slightly bitter flavour, full bodied with a smooth carbonation. Strong but still elegant malt character with caramel, nutty notes and a vinous fruity touch; moderately sweet malty and distinctively nutty finish with a whiff of booze, caramel and dried fruits. A nice winter warmer. 26.XII.13
ogivlado (7656) - Zagreb, CROATIA - FEB 11, 2014
2.9 AROMA 6/10 APPEARANCE 3/5 TASTE 5/10 PALATE 3/5 OVERALL 12/20
Bottled 750ml. -from Svijet Piva Zagreb. Had this one after all major Bush big bottle beers. And what a joy!!! From the beginning; clear amber coloured and medium sized off-white head; strong alcohol and some fruits in the nose. Heavy alcoholic, slight fruity and yeasty with (warming) vodka like taste. The finish is also the same; vodka like. Hardly a decent beer and a huge letdown for me!!!