Abbaye Des Rocs Grand Cru Belgian Special Brown Ale

Notes added 02/10/22.

13 years since I last took notes on this beer. 33 cl bottle, pictured.

Quite a carbonated initial pour with some real fizziness. Surprising. As I noted in the initial notes from 2009, the beer is quite light, especially considering the 9.5%.

Plenty of balanced sweetness and even a touch of banana up front. This lingers and builds down the bottle, a the subtle banana note becomes some thing that I walk away with more than anything else.

The “light” nature of a beer in this style, and of this ABV continues to surprise, and in the end even feels like the lack of depth is a slight let down (see below). Plenty of malts in the back end.

In the end, just like those 13 years ago, I still feel as though there should be more. I want to love this, in the need, I just enjoy it.

Original notes 02/21/2009.

Extraordinary that I have not reviewed this beer so far. Never mind, here we go.

$8.99 for the 750 mL capped and foiled champagne style, dimple bottomed green glass, heavy vessel. Total Wine, Perimeter, Atlanta GA, USA.

EXACTLY as anticipated the rich brown color is punctuated with a very dense and large number of floaties. Generally coagulated proteins are a big problem for BdR, and this beer is no exception. Quite ugly, and refuses to settle for a LONG time.

Head is good initially but fades to not much very quickly.

Nose reveals nice Belgian sweetness and yeast. Fairly solid.

Body and tastes are a little lighter than I was expecting. The beer reflects some alcohol richness, but it seems a little thin for the style. Not “bad”, but lighter than I wanted. Big, rich alcohol malt notes. Simple and delivers no surprises.

Not my favorite beer from a brewery that I generally have huge affection and respect for. Frankly a little disappointing, but this still makes it above average.


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ABV: 9.5 %
Appearance: 3
Taste: 3.5
Mouthfeel: 3.5
Smell: 3.5
Overall: 3.5
Total: 3.48
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