1. American Craft Beer Fest returns to Boston on May 29 & 30, featuring 640+ beers from 140+ brewers. Tickets are on sale now.

Solstice D'hiver - Brasserie Dieu Du Ciel

Not Rated.
Solstice D'hiverSolstice D'hiver

Educational use only; do not reuse.
very good

797 Ratings
no score

(send 'em beer!)
Ratings: 797
Reviews: 403
rAvg: 3.91
pDev: 10.49%
Wants: 29
Gots: 91 | FT: 1
Brewed by:
Brasserie Dieu Du Ciel visit their website
Quebec, Canada

Style | ABV
American Barleywine |  10.20% ABV

Availability: Rotating

Notes & Commercial Description:
Beer added by: Rastacouere on 12-10-2003

No notes at this time.
Beer: Ratings & Reviews
to view all ratings, reviews and sorting options.
Ratings: 797 | Reviews: 403
Photo of vince4953529
5/5  rDev +27.9%

Photo of westcoastbeerlvr
4/5  rDev +2.3%

Photo of Exiled
4/5  rDev +2.3%

Photo of Jspriest
5/5  rDev +27.9%

Photo of moustasa
4.1/5  rDev +4.9%
look: 4 | smell: 4 | taste: 4 | feel: 5 | overall: 4

Found bottle at Groppi's. It is a strong old barley wine. I did not know what the style was, it had an unexpected level of boldness. Not very smooth, because of the high alcohol. It was good, I would try another type from this French Canadian brewery.

Photo of biglobo8971
3.33/5  rDev -14.8%
look: 3.5 | smell: 3 | taste: 3.5 | feel: 3 | overall: 3.5

poured from bottle into tulip. This beer has regular distro in my area, never tried it before I received it in a trade.
lools solid, seems particular dark, almost porter ish. No head at all, very slim lacing that clings to outer rim, does not follow down the glass. Very faint in the nose, small hints of sweetness, not much else. Taste is solid, slight malt sweetness, very little hop flavor. The mouthfeel is ok, not spectacular, flavors still resonate longer than it should. Overall, solid beer, not outstanding, just solid.

Photo of capeannbass36
4/5  rDev +2.3%
look: 4 | smell: 4 | taste: 4 | feel: 4 | overall: 4

A- A rough pour into a tulip glass produced a hazy, honey brown with slightly red highlights around the edges, topped by a 1 finger light tan head that dissapated in 2 minutes. Very light lacing left behind.

S- The typical sweet malty barley wine scent.

T- Malt. Brown sugar. Dark fruit. Caramel. Slightly hoppy.

M- Medium light carbonation. Slightly warm.

O- Not bad. Would prefer this to be just a tad sweeter. Still like it a lot. Huge fan of Dieu Du Ceil. Would love to take a trip to Montreal and have some of their brews on tap.

Photo of mikehblack
3.38/5  rDev -13.6%
look: 3.5 | smell: 3 | taste: 3.5 | feel: 3.5 | overall: 3.5

Pours into my snifter a brownish honey color. Some orange on the edges. Very little head and apparent carbonation. Smells of sweet sugars and caramel, bit of alcohol. Taste brings forth some hop bitterness at the front. Continues with those caramel notes. Fairly balanced hop and malt flavors but it's leaving me with desire for more complexity. I can taste the 10.2% but it isn't overwhelming. Medium bodied with pretty good carbonation that wasn't as noticeable on the pour. Overall a decent American barleywine but the depth and balance just isn't quite there for me.

Photo of ronniebruner
4.22/5  rDev +7.9%
look: 4 | smell: 4.5 | taste: 4 | feel: 5 | overall: 4

Upon first pour you notice a wonderful aroma of barley and sugar. The beer pours a honey cream color with a decent amount of head and minimal carbonation. The high ABV is countered by a sugary sweet note of citrus fruit, followed by a nice aftertaste that leaves a warm tinge on the tongue. A very good brew indeed.

Photo of StlHopHead77
3.97/5  rDev +1.5%
look: 3.5 | smell: 4 | taste: 4 | feel: 4 | overall: 4

10.2% ABV.No idea of actual vintage.

A-Pours out a dark brownish/crimson body with only a touch of haze.One inch of dense but quickly dissipating tawny foam that left thin and slick islands of lacing on the glass.

S-Baked red apple,plum,date,burnt sugars,Barbera grapes and mild tobacco.

T-Very smooth,well integrated flavors of dark fruit(fig and plum),dark caramel,earthy hops,leather and mild,aromatic pipe tobacco.

M-Medium/full body with some residual sugary sweetness and alcohol warmth but overall exceptionally smooth.Sweet and slightly rich but not cloying.

O-I found this to be an extremely enjoyable barleywine and I'm anxious to figure out the actual vintage on this one.

Photo of JoEBoBpr
2.38/5  rDev -39.1%
look: 3.5 | smell: 3 | taste: 2 | feel: 2.5 | overall: 2

Poured into a a tulip glass from a 12oz bottle.

A - Pours a nice murky light brown color with some slight amber hints. That only show up on on the edges. There is a thin, medium dense, light tan head that recedes quickly.

S - Strong caramel and molasses hints come up strong and linger. The beer is very malty and sweet. Brown sugar notes and some slight pear and apple cider notes in the nose. Not much hops. A bit 1-D.

T & M - Starts off with some nice molasses sweetness and good caramel. Slight burnt caramel notes are present. There is some brown sugar and there is also a slight roast to the beer. There is a slight acrid note to the beer as well. The taste finishes a bit on the burnt side with a slightly overwhelming yeast note that seems to hide the flavors. Not the greatest beer in my opinion. A lighter body for an AB.

O - The beer is underwhelming. The flavors don't seem to blend very well. Not my coup of tee.

Photo of BerkeleyBeerMan
3.99/5  rDev +2%
look: 3.5 | smell: 4.5 | taste: 4 | feel: 4 | overall: 3.5

App: Hazy dark reddish-brown with a light creamy brown head that dissipates. Big bubbles predominate.

Smell: The aroma is of heavy malts and a light liquor smell. I pick up hints of cacao, pepper, clove, tart cherry.

Taste: Heavy dark roasted malt flavor with hints of cacao and vanilla. A tart burbon quality and some tight bitterness blend remarkably well together. The finish is quick.

Mouthfeel: Chewy and full bodied. Light enough to quaff down but strong enough in alcohol content to be a sipper. It's drinkable but dangerous. Slightly on the heavy side and not as crisp as the insanely drinkable bigfoot ale. I like this ale on a cold and rainy. fall evening such as this one

Overall: A good effort. Nice flavors. Not expensive but also not cheap. I'll revisit this one and I am definitely interested in this breweries other ales.

Photo of Wildman
3.95/5  rDev +1%
look: 4 | smell: 4 | taste: 4 | feel: 3.5 | overall: 4

The beer poured a dark hazy amber color and formed a light brown foam head that coated the glass with lace as it subsided. A small amount of carbonation and sediment was present. An aroma of malt, caramel, chocolate, anise and pepper. The flavor was of malt, candy, caramel and spices. The body was medium light and the finish bittersweet.

Photo of chugalug06
3.82/5  rDev -2.3%
look: 5 | smell: 3 | taste: 4 | feel: 4 | overall: 4

A - Amazing looking brew! Head quickly settles into a nice light brown foamy crown. Head stays as a thin cracker for the entirety. Some nice lacing too.

S - Very grape. Not to much else... Some slight heat, but not sugary. Some deep molasses. Almost smells like lighter fluid.

T - Lots of big smooth flavor. An awesome B-wine! Slightly sweet, but not overly. Not too much heat. Some big grape notes turn out well.

M - Perfect, with only slight bitterness.

O - Phew! This one will take your head-off!!! An awesome brew, but one to let sit and rest for a few years...

Photo of kawilliams81
3.45/5  rDev -11.8%
look: 4 | smell: 4 | taste: 3 | feel: 3.5 | overall: 3.5

Served in a 16 oz. snifter.

A- Dark ruby brown with 2 finger tan head and excellent lacing.

S- Tons of malt, dark fruits, leather, tobacco.

T- Sweet amber/roasted malts, get some cocoa near the finish along with a hint of dark fruits. Decent hop finish to balance the malts.

M- Full bodied. Fairly thick and creamy with a semi-dry finish.

O- Taste does not hold up to aroma. It's a good beer but just missing something for me in the taste.

Photo of pmarlowe
4.1/5  rDev +4.9%
look: 4 | smell: 4 | taste: 4 | feel: 4 | overall: 4.5

No bottle date, but there's a notch at "0" and between 7 and 8. Tulip glass.

A: Pours very dark amber with about a half finger of light grayish khaki head which mostly disappears within a few minutes. Still, decent retention and some lacing.

S: Loads of caramel, along with malt and fruity esters.

T: Caramel with some chocolate making an appearance, folded over a nice understated hoppy brightness, followed by a hint of some red fruit on the tongue. Alcohol is detectable but in balance; not bad considering it's 10%. Very slight hoppy aftertaste which lends some bitterness. Pretty dry, overall.

M: Medium-light carbonation, medium body. Slight alcohol warmth.

O: An excellent example of an American-style barleywine. I usually prefer English-style, but the hops was nicely integrated and played second fiddle to the malt. This one won't blow you away, but it's very tasty.

Photo of smakawhat
3.6/5  rDev -7.9%
look: 4 | smell: 4 | taste: 3.5 | feel: 3 | overall: 3.5

Poured from the bottle into a tumbler. Bottled 2008?

A nice sticky small caramel with cloudy dark amber body. Hints of cherry red hues.

Nose is cherry fruit, light nutmeg and dense malt.

Taste is a little too carbonated, but also feels distinctly hop and earth. Dirty palate mixed with soil and tree bark. Not that alcohol boozy either which is nice. Some caramel comes out as the beer gets to room temperature. Slightly wet for a barleywine and texture feels dirty.

Overall a dark wooded sipper if there ever was one. Don't mind it.

Photo of bluejacket74
3.5/5  rDev -10.5%
look: 3.5 | smell: 3.5 | taste: 3.5 | feel: 3.5 | overall: 3.5

11.5 ounce bottle, 10.2% ABV. Served in a snifter, the beer pours a cloudy reddish/brown color with about a half inch light tan head. The head went away quickly, but there's a good amount of lacing. Aroma is molasses, brown sugar, yeast, bready malt and caramel. It tastes like caramel malt, toffee, brown sugar, bready malt and some plums. Mouthfeel/body is medium, it's somewhat coating and creamy with moderate carbonation. I think it's a decent beer overall, but there's nothing really impressive about this. Maybe it would be better if I had aged it longer, so I might buy another bottle to do just that.

Photo of hippityhops85
3.67/5  rDev -6.1%
look: 4 | smell: 4.5 | taste: 3 | feel: 3.5 | overall: 4

11.5 oz bottle (I'm surprised Dieu Du Ciel does twist offs?) into a goblet. (Note: my bottle reads 10.2% abv as opposed to the 9.8% quoted on BA)

Thanks to MikeyMikee for the hook up.

Pours a murky brown with reddish highlights. A solid 1 finger off white/eggshell head dissipates to a 1/4 in head that sticks around for the ride.

The nose was the most difficult part of this beer. It is reminiscent of those piles of leaves we get here during the fall except it's like the municipality has forgotten to pick them up and they've slowly started to decay. A really enjoyable mustiness along with a very present sweet and sticky hop aroma. I also pull some flavors like a Belgian quad would impart perhaps? Really looking forward to tasting this.

Hmm... I'm mildly let down actually. The bitterness is almost overwhelming the intricate and delicate flavors I was able to pull off of the nose. It's just a blast of bitterness and booziness.

The mouth feel is pretty typical for a barleywine. Thick and viscous. I have a hard time distinguishing and alcohol burn for carbonation.

All in all a rather solid barleywine. Would I seek it out again? Probably not unless I was going to lay it down for a good 3-5 years as I think this will age nicely and that bitterness will smooth out into a real gem. Recommended.

Photo of NEhophead
3.5/5  rDev -10.5%
look: 3.5 | smell: 3.5 | taste: 3.5 | feel: 3.5 | overall: 3.5

11.5 fl oz brown bottle, served in a snifter.

Alcohol by volume is labeled 10.2%.

Pours a muddy, deep caramel in color beneath a creamy, off-white head that lingers as a thin, intact sheet. Thin lacing with decent strength.

Sweet molasses with notes of brown sugar. Muted, red apple and grape. The sweet malt and aged fruit aromas are both quite reserved. The scotch-tinged alcohol presence is the most noticeable aromatic with touches of peat and vanilla.

Initially, somewhat bland, stiff caramel and molasses flavors that are quickly sweetened by notes of vanilla and nutmeg spices creating a mellow richness. The alcohol presence is young, intense, one-dimensional, and lasting. The middle is earthen and filled with floral hops.

Full in body; slick on the palate on account of the alcohol profile.

A bit disappointing considering my previous experiences with Dieu Du Ciel. Not a bad Barleywine, but nothing to really write home about.

Photo of jsvt
3.6/5  rDev -7.9%
look: 3 | smell: 3 | taste: 4 | feel: 4 | overall: 3.5

Bottle poured into snifter.

Pours semi-vigorously carbonated with a 1 inch tan head.

The nose is initially tame for a barley wine, which is good as the alcohol usually can be pretty prevalent amongst the style. Further sniffs reveal hay, molasses and hops amongst other subtle notes of brown sugar and yeast.

On the palate quite seamless. The malt, alcohol and sugars align nicely to provide balance. Notes of toffee, malt and hops align with a great acidity and mouth feel. A nice balance of not being too boozy and/or malt forward like some overproduced barley wines can be.

Photo of Knapp85
3.7/5  rDev -5.4%
look: 3.5 | smell: 3.5 | taste: 4 | feel: 3.5 | overall: 3.5

This beer poured out as a deep red color, almost brown. The head was thin and really didn't go anywhere with the lacing in my opinion. The smell of the beer has a boozy sweetness to it. The taste of caramel upfront that fades into a warming tingle in the aftertaste. The mouthfeel of the beer was thick a little oily and smooth. Overall the alcohol comes through in the back end kind of on the strong side. Since it's a Winter brew and a Barley Wine it kind of makes sense. I guess I just prefer a more hoppy Barley Wine. But this one wasn't too bad.

Photo of claytong
4.03/5  rDev +3.1%
look: 4.5 | smell: 4 | taste: 4 | feel: 4 | overall: 4

as barleywines are a favorite pass time of mine, this blends in. but otherwise a very nice beverage and i do like the label which makes it a plus. plus the yeast is still in there...good boys.

appearance- yeast, mahogany in color with minor head that dissapears quick without lacing

smell - caramel malt, typical english barleywine smell. (brown sugar, caramel, toffee, minor earthy tone)

taste - follows the nose. caramel and toffee doing the dominating

mouthfeel - very nice with a minor alcohol sting at the end. carbonation is light to medium body is medium to full.

Photo of AWolfAtTheDoor
4.22/5  rDev +7.9%
look: 4 | smell: 4.5 | taste: 4 | feel: 4 | overall: 4.5

This appeared at my local Bevmo about 1.5 years ago, so I bought out all the bottles (maybe half a dozen). Just drank my last one.

Dark mahogany, with some clumpy yeast sediment. Yum. Lack luster lacing.

Smells great. Alcohol definitely present. Bready, carmelly.

More carmel and bread with a warming alcohol presence. Something else that I can't quite put my finger on? Vanilla? Special B? Interesting and yummy.

Thick barleywine mouthfeel at it's finest.

Overall a delicious beer from the best microbrew in Canada.

Photo of cosmicevan
3.53/5  rDev -9.7%
look: 4 | smell: 3.5 | taste: 3.5 | feel: 3.5 | overall: 3.5

Big thanks to CruisaC and the hats off to barelywine BIF. bottle says 10.2%.

a - opened the bottle and filled my captain lawrence taster tulip. poured a pretty shiny brown with an almost mahogany tint to it. not much head to speak of...maybe a small ring around the surface at best.

s - very subdued...really needed to dig in. not what i was expecting at all. plum. zesty earth (if that makes any sense at all)...malty, no hop presence at all (not sure of the age on this one).

t - plum and grape candy. malts mostly...hint of some hops on the finish. dark fruit.

m - full and rich. booze really tingles my mouth. finishes pretty bitter.

o - overall, a decent barleywine. hops seem to only be in the finish. kind of boozy.

to view all ratings, reviews and sorting options.
Solstice D'hiver from Brasserie Dieu Du Ciel
88 out of 100 based on 797 ratings.