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Grande Noirceur - Brasserie Dieu Du Ciel

Not Rated.
Grande NoirceurGrande Noirceur

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BA SCORE
89
very good

205 Ratings
THE BROS
-
no score

(send 'em beer!)
Ratings: 205
Reviews: 62
rAvg: 3.98
pDev: 9.55%
Wants: 12
Gots: 31 | FT: 5
Brewed by:
Brasserie Dieu Du Ciel visit their website
Quebec, Canada

Style | ABV
Russian Imperial Stout |  9.00% ABV

Availability: Rotating

Notes/Commercial Description:
The Grand Noirceur (Great Darkness). Is a dense black beer with robust roasted flavors. Its imposing bitterness is balanced by the presence of complex malted, caramel notes. It takes its name from the conservative policies of mid-century Quebec. The Grande Noirceur was born at our Montreal brewpub in March of 2004.

(Beer added by: Rastacouere on 03-15-2004)
Beer: Ratings & Reviews
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Ratings: 205 | Reviews: 62 | Display Reviews Only:
Photo of rogerdandy
5/5  rDev +25.6%

Photo of abriggs1
4.79/5  rDev +20.4%
look: 5 | smell: 4.75 | taste: 4.75 | feel: 5 | overall: 4.75

This is just about the perfect Russian Imperial Stout. Roasty with a nice balance of caramel and chocolate malt flavors. The appearance is of a chocolate cake with beer-laced butter for a frosting; Beer porn.

The mouthfeel is silky and smooth, and has a good amount of that Peche Mortel oiliness that took the beer world by storm a decade ago. But that silkiness is even creamier, and comes to the front with a sarsaparilla and root beer smoothness that's out of this world.

The taste is everything you can imagine in a stout; coconut, chocolate, molasses, cola, root beer, a hint of cherry, and vanilla right up the ass. Not as much coffee and bourbon flavors as most stouts, and they're not missed in this one.

Dieu De Ciel is possibly the greatest brewery on planet earth. Who else can produce beers like this? I've had some crazy good Russian Imperial Stouts in my day from places like Hill Farmstead, North Coast, Sierra Nevada, Stone, New England Brewing Company, Cigar City, and many others. This may just be my favorite stout.

Photo of CurtisD
4.75/5  rDev +19.3%

Photo of OsoRojo
4.75/5  rDev +19.3%

Photo of bobsy
4.53/5  rDev +13.8%
look: 5 | smell: 4.5 | taste: 4.5 | feel: 4.5 | overall: 4.5

Holy shit...its the best looking beer I've ever seen! Jet black transcending to chocolate as the bubbles slowly settle into a majestic silky smooth giant beige head. A match for the péché mortel in every respect, so it comes as no suprise that this is the base beer for that finest of Canadian brews. Roasted coffee beans, chocolate and vanilla in the nose. Imperial stout all the way. A sublime marriage of coffee with chocolate and dark fruit. Rich, huge flavour and feel.

Here's the differences from its more renowned offspring - the péché obviously has a more pronounced coffee flavour from the addition of some joe to the brew, but it also has an added creaminess to balance it out and prevent it from becoming overpowering like the Mikeller take on this style. While the base flavour of the noirceur really is superb, the added coffee and cream notes in the péché give it a slight edge in the aroma, which you can't help but recall as you raise the noirceur to your lips. Of course this is probably a slightly lesser equivalent of saying Abyss is no Darklord, so make of that what you will. What a fantastic brew though, and it deserves to have a reputation up with the greats. Enjoy this draft only secret if you come across it at the pub in Montreal and rejoice that you are one of the fortunate few.

Photo of BeerDrinkingDiver
4.5/5  rDev +13.1%

Photo of macesq
4.5/5  rDev +13.1%

Photo of random846
4.5/5  rDev +13.1%

Photo of lgmol
4.5/5  rDev +13.1%

Photo of MSandahl23
4.5/5  rDev +13.1%

Photo of francisweizen
4.5/5  rDev +13.1%
look: 4.5 | smell: 4.5 | taste: 4.5 | feel: 4.5 | overall: 4.5

On-Tap @ Le Mondial 2005. Dark, pretty much opaque black with a nice head of dark khaki/tan foam that lasts and leaves nice lacing. Aromas are strong imperial stout notes very similar to the famous Peche Mortel which this is the base beer for, iirc. I pick up dark roasty malts, chocolate, coffee, caramel, maybe a hint of vanilla, and sweet spice, and a bit more. Taste follows suit and is very heavy and big. Maybe a hint of dark fruit, some good dark chocolate, some good dark coffee (but not espresso like in the PM) and more. Mouthfeel is thick and coating and drinkability is very, very good for a beer of this size. I mean c'mon an Imperial stout from DDC, obviously it rocks my socks off. Still the PM is better, and it proves it again and again. This is still @ contender though!...

Photo of Groulxsome
4.5/5  rDev +13.1%

Photo of westcoastbeerlvr
4.5/5  rDev +13.1%

Photo of KalanM
4.5/5  rDev +13.1%

Photo of DaPan
4.5/5  rDev +13.1%

Photo of Jeffo
4.48/5  rDev +12.6%
look: 3 | smell: 4.5 | taste: 4.5 | feel: 5 | overall: 4.5

Got this from Hopsolutely recently. Cheers for the beers guys!

From a bottle into a snifter
Bottled November 2012

APPEARANCE: Pours black and somewhat transparent, yielding a small, medium loooking, mocha colored head with decent retention. Head fades to a thin film and ring. Black body and medium levels of carbonation evident. A light ring remains but no real lacing down the glass. Okay for the style.

SMELL: Lots of roasted notes, some leather, dark chocolate and molasses on the nose. Very bold, with some sweet cream in there as well. Very nice.

TASTE: Roasted and sweet molasses up front with chocolate and more bitter coffee and sweet molasses flavors into the finish. Big, bold and lingering aftertaste of roasted and smoky flavors, bitter dark chocolate and coffee, with some light sweet cream as balance. This is outstanding and so flavorful at 9%. Excellent stuff.

PALATE: Fuller body and medium levels of carbonation. Velvety creamy on the palate, goes down silky smooth and finishes slightly sticky. Wonderful feel to say the least.

OVERALL: Excellent. Very impressive imperial stout, with all the right things in the right places. The look could be darker with better lacing for the style, but the rest of the show is top notch. Another great stout beer from DDC. Highly recommended.

Photo of Maxwell
4.45/5  rDev +11.8%
look: 4 | smell: 4.25 | taste: 4.5 | feel: 4.75 | overall: 4.5

The beer pours like used up motor oil- thick and black. It nearly oozes out of the bottle, and leaves no head behind, and only a slight hint of very dark khaki (nearly orange) bubbles. This stout has one of the smallest head formations I have ever seen on a beer, which is fine with the style and looks fine upon this beer, but is still slightly puzzling. When washed up against the sides of the glass, the beer leaves thin and drizzling legs of alcohol to evaporate into the air. In body, the beer is viscous and impenetrable to the eye. On the nose, the beer smells like a proper RIS. Smooth roasted malt mingles with dark chocolate and French roast coffee notes. As you swirl the beer, notes of earth and must kick up into the nose suggesting a decaying forest floor alongside the roast malt character. Herbal black licorice dances around the nose as well, slightly blurring with the beers soft touch of booze. This is a luxurious and complex scent for a beer. On the tongue, the beer tastes softly sweet with chocolate and bread nuances. These are balanced by a smooth bitter roast with just a kiss of grassy hops at the finish. Hot alcohol does burn through the second half of the sip, but it is blended in with the other elements and does nothing to hurt the taste of the beer. This is a true work of balance in an RIS; sure, the flavors are big and intense, but overall this beer is quite smooth on the palate. In flavor, the beer begins as smooth chocolate malt, sweet cherries, just a ghost of raisin, and then spicy booze. This opens into rich French roast coffee, dark chocolate, and then decaying leaves and must. The finish turns to black licorice and root beer with smooth dark chocolate coating the back of the throat. The aftertaste is of licorice and chocolate. As the beer warms, I also start to get hints of whipped cream at the finish, which add a rich, dessert-like character to the beer. In the mouth, the beer feels oozingly fat, yet divinely silky and smooth in mouthfeel. The beer is of a heavier body, and though the smoothness helps to hide this, the way the beer oozes off the back of the palate in the finish suggests quite a heavy beer. Carbonation is practically none-existent, with only the tiniest prickle making me aware of its presence in this beer. After the beer leaves, the mouth is left slightly damp in the middle of the tongue, but with a nice roasted-dry feeling throughout the rest of the mouth. The mouthfeel is quite luxurious, and nearly perfect, but I do wish it had just a little more grip on my tongue, so as to let me know the true weight of the beer. This beer is quite delectable, overall. Rich and complex malt flavors blend perfectly together to give a superb sip. This beer is also a great candidate for aging for one to two years, as the final traces of booze will surely meld away and bring the rich malts to further complex glory. Dieu du Ciel’s twist caps are a worry with oxidation, however, so if you do age a bottle be sure to dip it in wax. This beer is, of course, ready to drink as is, and provides quite a beautiful experience on the palate. This is the most balanced RIS I’ve had to date, and it is one of the best that I have tasted.

Photo of philmath
4.45/5  rDev +11.8%
look: 4.5 | smell: 4 | taste: 4.5 | feel: 5 | overall: 4.5

Took that one at the 7th anniversary of DDC! Powerful cacao smell. Body is dark as my soul when i'm feeling depressed. I cannot see through the glass; which is perfect for this kind of beer IMO. Makes me feel warm. It reminds me the Papua New Guinea coffee I took that morning. A perfect drink when you are feeling lonely and melancholic (even if I was with two buddies... but who cares!?). Very reminiscent of the Bieropholie Imperial Stout. Great Job DDC!

Photo of ZorPrime
4.41/5  rDev +10.8%
look: 4.5 | smell: 4.5 | taste: 4.25 | feel: 4.75 | overall: 4.5

My bottle says its 9% abv, not 8.5%. First bottled version was higher in ABV? maybe...

This is a 2012 bottle.

My tasting notes says:

The color is black, very dark. Nice brown head on top of it. Creamy looking, dense and sticky. Nice looking beer. Almost perfect. Very nice smell... its delicious. Coffee, chocolate and roasted malts. The taste is dominated by chocolate with a nice bitterness of espresso coffee. Wow. The taste lingers for so long, its amazing. DDC knows how to do Stout! Voluptuous in the mouth, quite complex and big too.

The alcohol is so well hidden, its crazy! So well done but so dangerous. You want to drink more than one, but you will be toasted! :)

As it warms up, the alcohol will make its presence. The beer is a true sipper... winter warmer for those cold nights. Wish we could get this one all winter long.

Well balanced. Some citrusy hops in the back.

Overall: Very good. Awesome.

Photo of hoser
4.4/5  rDev +10.6%
look: 4.5 | smell: 4.5 | taste: 4.5 | feel: 4.5 | overall: 4

This is a great Russian Imperial Stout and really to top their own Peche Mortel is a tough task. My fourth big ABV beer of the night, maybe the last. I would like this Russian Imperial Stout to be a little more roasty, a little more bitter, a little more nasty and a little more North Coast.

I know these guys will nail it, I look forward to it and I will rerate when I try the next version.

Brewed 15 months before I drank it. The Flames are losing.

Photo of Gator_Nation
4.4/5  rDev +10.6%

Photo of zhivago373
4.4/5  rDev +10.6%

enjoyed from bottles and on tap at the brewpub.

pours jet black with a creamy brown heady that lingers on the glass but dissipates quickly.

smells of rich dark chocolate, roasted malts, bitter espresso and slightly sweet caramel.

the taste follows suit: bitter dark chocolate/espresso notes on the back of the tongue, some sweeter notes hit the middle, definitely a slight smokeyness/char coming through. thick mouthfeel.

this is a great stout. i prefer it to Peche Mortel. worth trying.

Photo of FondueVoodoo
4.36/5  rDev +9.5%
look: 4.25 | smell: 4.25 | taste: 4.5 | feel: 4.25 | overall: 4.25

Huge thanks to papat444 for delivering this exceptional beer in an in person trade at DDC in Montreal.

A: Pours a black-brown with 3-4 fingers of huge fluffy espresso crema head which slowly settles leaving clumps of lacing surrounding the glass.

S: Initial scents of cocoa powder with sweet roasted malts, molasses and strong dark coffee. Some earthiness is present in the background along with notes of chocolate essence.

T: Taste follows the smell although the bitterness of both the coffee and the cocoa come through on the tongue which were not detected on the nose. Finishes with sweet malts and molasses.

M: Thick, oily and creamy with little to no detectable carbonation or alcohol.

O: Another amazing offering from DDC who in my view can do no wrong. This is a solid RIS that is a great nighttime sipper.

Photo of KYGunner
4.34/5  rDev +9%
look: 5 | smell: 4.5 | taste: 4.25 | feel: 4.25 | overall: 4.25

As this black pearl stout oozed into a snifter I knew this was special. Despite it not being a nitro tap it had a growing and billowing cloud of carbonation along the edges as if it were alive. These bubbles churned along the edges until a neat and tidy creamy froth stacked along the top. The lacing was a sheet of thick film that caked around the edge. I've never given a 5 in appearance but this was worth it.

The aroma is full with deep char, smoky embers, burnt toffee, roasted caramel malt, coffee roast and toasted walnut.

The flavor holds more of the smoky elements with deep char and campfire embers. The sweet toffee and caramel is more or less absent but the roast, toast and coffee char seem far more frontal.

This drinks with ease, dryness and a start to creamy.

This was an absolute joy to discover as I found it on a whim. If you like deeply roasted and smoky char than this is your kind of stout.

Photo of Misanthropy_Sipping
4.34/5  rDev +9%
look: 5 | smell: 4.25 | taste: 4.25 | feel: 4.75 | overall: 4.25

A bottle found in Denver again... somewhere... maybe Argonaut? Sounds right. I've had several bees from this brewer and have never been disappointed. I was pretty excited to see one I'd not had before.

The appearance is spot on and just plain great. Definitely earns it's 'darkness' reference. This beer is black. Pours out relatively thick with a milk chocolate head that slowly dissipates into a good latte toned skim. I really like the way it looks.

The smell is not hugely robust but definitely puts off a charred wood and malt smell. A very aggressive coffee smell as well. Very roasty. It has a slight sweetness to the nose, a sweetness one may get from smelling dark chocolate... and yeah... speaking of chocolate. There is a cocoa nib scent. A tad citrusy in a strange way.

There is a lot going on in this imperial stout taste wise. The full on robust taste of dark chocolate and coffee swing in at the forefront and then gradually wind down into a blend of toasted malts and charred wood... intermingling with a tannin like tartness that would be reminiscent of high acid coffee. There is also a sense of dried cherries I get from this beer. I also cannot avoid mentioning the unusual citrus hops that must be used in this. They really give the beer a strange, bitter, and extra dry dimension. A tint of vanilla... but all quite dry and with little sweetness.

Mouthfeel is velvety and pretty dense, which is good. It is not like drinking syrup. It just has weight, which I appreciate a lot. It is quite dry... very dry. Also quite bitter. The bitterness lingers quite well with the tannic coffee sort of deal going on. The finish and reverberation through the mouth reminds me a lot of a great cup of black coffee.

Overall, I am quite pleased in the beer. It is unusual, but it has a lot of complexity going for it. I would gladly pick up another given the chance. The same could be said of all of their beers though. Just an overall great brewery.

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Grande Noirceur from Brasserie Dieu Du Ciel
89 out of 100 based on 205 ratings.