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Noël - Birrificio Le Baladin

NoëlNoël

Displayed for educational use only; do not reuse.
BA SCORE
88
very good

100 Ratings
THE BROS
81
good

(view ratings)
Ratings: 100
Reviews: 67
rAvg: 3.92
pDev: 13.52%


Brewed by:
Birrificio Le Baladin visit their website
Italy

Style | ABV
Belgian Strong Dark Ale |  9.00% ABV

Availability: Year-round

Notes/Commercial Description:
No notes at this time.

(Beer added by: guinness33 on 12-28-2003)
Beer: Ratings & Reviews
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Ratings: 100 | Reviews: 67 | Show All Ratings:
Reviews by blakesell:
Photo of blakesell
blakesell

Ohio

3.7/5  rDev -5.6%
look: 3 | smell: 3 | taste: 4 | feel: 3.5 | overall: 4

Poured from the strange shape I don't even want to guess what oz fits in this bottle bottle into a standard pint glass.

This is aged for at least a year, so we'll just call it 2008 vintage.

Appearance - Beer pours fairly thin for a strong dark, a clear brown amber with a pretty small head for what I was expecting after opening the champagne capped bottle (like nothing I've seen before, large size bottle cap with a champagne rubber thing holding carbonation in). Yeasty chunks fall to the bottom of the glass. Lacing is there, but again thin.

Smell - Smells like a Belgian beer. I would love to add some extra adjectives, but it's simple at best. My closest main beer that I've had to it is New Belgium 1554 which is a Belgian dark, nothing strong about it. It smells to be of average strength, which judging by the ABV, is impressive on it's own.

Taste- A rich cola carbonation and flavor, I'm getting a big RC cola flavor, some plum, no very dark fruits, but light dark fruits if that makes any sense. Pulpy ripe fruits, very much like a plum pear combo if that existed. I can't get past the soda and this is not a bad beer, but it is being detracted from by the perceptions that I'm getting here.

Mouthfeel - I may have rated this too high at 3.5 but the number stands. The carbonation is too high and the whole soda feel is simply out of place here. The richer fruits taste great here, I honestly was expecting more and I guess I shouldn't have let my expectations get the best of me here. Medium light in body, high in carbonation, low in overall mouthfeel.

Drinkability- It tastes light overall and a bit syrupy sweet. This isn't bad for the one time offering that I'm going to give it. For the price, it is no where near worth it. As a standard beer if I could get it for $6 a sixer, I still probably wouldn't go for it. but this will go down smooth for tonight. I will not be holding this against Baladin as a whole.

Serving type: bottle

11-21-2009 02:26:43 | More by blakesell
More User Reviews:
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PEIhop

Massachusetts

4/5  rDev +2%

04-18-2014 00:06:15 | More by PEIhop
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clayrock81

Virginia

3.84/5  rDev -2%
look: 4 | smell: 4 | taste: 3.75 | feel: 4 | overall: 3.75

Poured a somewhat brownish black body (not completely black) with good head and lace retention. A rather complex nose because I seem to pick up dark fruits like raisins and black cherry as well as some yeast, minor hopiness and then some sweetness that seems to be beyond caramel. Not the most complex beer but it's a light to medium body, not really chewey but there's some sturdiness there, is actually pretty smooth, some more raisins, dark/black cherries, hints of figs, some caramel or candi sugar sweetness comes out and then it has a spicy finish. A rather interesting beer that was worth a shot.

Serving type: on-tap

01-19-2014 15:58:52 | More by clayrock81
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Gww1864

New Jersey

4/5  rDev +2%

01-19-2014 04:32:47 | More by Gww1864
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ortie

Kentucky

4/5  rDev +2%

01-15-2014 03:53:10 | More by ortie
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BEERchitect

Kentucky

3.86/5  rDev -1.5%
look: 4 | smell: 3.75 | taste: 3.75 | feel: 4.25 | overall: 4

Celebrating the holiday season Italian-style! Turns out its a lot like Belgian-style as the ale opens up with the familiar fruit and spice interplay as those darker, richer Belgian Trappist ales and with a familiar candied malt base. It warms the spirit, soothes the mind and makes families much more tolerable.

As the beer settles, it does so with the rusty, reddish-brown hue that casts subtle highlights through its yeasty veil. Its foam is eggshell-white as the creamy bubbles amass a blanket of froth that shields the beer from top to bottom throughout the session. The ale creeps along, leaving denoting concentric rings of lace in its memory.

Fruity and malty aromas align in the nose with raisins, dates, figs and cherries. Throw in the orchard fruit varieties of apples and berries for good measure, allowing a vinous red wine note to permit. The fruit is pulled together with lightly seared caramel and brown sugar for a taste that strikes the nose as "fruitcake" like. Spicy white pepper, cinnamon and nutmeg sides with the alcohol for a balance that seems like spiced rum.

Soft and supple to taste, the ale simply melts on the tongue with creamy sweetness- starting off with the sweetness of powdered sugar, light molasses, mildly toasted coffee cake and slight brown sugar. As the taste of dried dark fruit fold into the mix, its nutty date, fig, sultan and cherry flavors reinforce the fruitcake notion. And all those Christmas-type spices do much the same as the fruity-sweetness is in much need of balance. But the ale trails spicy and slightly wine-like as a tangy and tannin-like finish looms.

Only medium-full on the palate, the sweetness would imply richer texture, but the soft and creamy carbonation keeps the beer silky and somewhat "feathery". As alcohol as spice builds, drier impressions are left on the back of the tongue until the finish is left with only echoes of cola nut, toasted grain and mulled spice warmth.

Where greater amplification of the ale overall would aid its vividness, its delicate mouthfeel is what is truly intangible. It simply does what the Rochefort, St. Bernardus and Westvleteren of the world do. We have a winner based on palate sensations alone!

Serving type: on-tap

01-11-2014 17:21:46 | More by BEERchitect
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Griffith

Connecticut

4/5  rDev +2%

01-08-2014 22:37:28 | More by Griffith
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spoony

Colorado

3.88/5  rDev -1%
look: 4 | smell: 3.75 | taste: 4 | feel: 3.75 | overall: 3.75

From a funky-shaped 750 ml bottle (code says L32/120) into a wine glass.

A-A normal pour produces about one finger of thick, khaki foam. The head hangs around for a minute before dropping to a thick cap that hangs around for quite a while. The beer is a dark-ruby hued brown color and very murky.

S-The aroma is malty and earthy, but less sweet than I would expect of a BSDA and a beer that calls itself holiday beer. There is some leather, prune, cocoa, and a touch of spice. The alcohol is noticeable and solventy in character.

T-The taste is similar to the smell with earthy prune, raisin, leather, and soil flavors. There is also some cocoa and a bit more spice like nutmeg and allspice. The solventy alcohol is also obvious, but it fits pretty well with the flavors and gives a bit of sweetness and warming.

M-The beer is soft and full in body. The carbonation is fine and foamy on my palate.

O-This is a tasty and somewhat unique beer. The flavors are complex and the warming, slightly spicy and alcoholic nature of this BSDA are mostly what I expect from a holiday beer. That being said, I could have used a little more sweetness to balance the earthy flavors. Glad I got to try to this and I would drink it again if given the chance.

Serving type: bottle

12-29-2013 21:45:01 | More by spoony
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ChaelCox

Virginia

4/5  rDev +2%

12-22-2013 23:20:16 | More by ChaelCox
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jaydoc

Kansas

3.5/5  rDev -10.7%

10-26-2013 13:52:27 | More by jaydoc
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francisweizen

Arizona

4.25/5  rDev +8.4%

10-01-2013 16:53:12 | More by francisweizen
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Ilovebrew

New York

3.75/5  rDev -4.3%

08-09-2013 14:22:01 | More by Ilovebrew
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gpblackgt

Pennsylvania

4/5  rDev +2%

07-17-2013 21:20:41 | More by gpblackgt
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liamt07

Ontario (Canada)

3.75/5  rDev -4.3%

06-09-2013 19:35:14 | More by liamt07
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Chrily

Norway

4.25/5  rDev +8.4%

05-16-2013 12:56:18 | More by Chrily
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Beer-A-Lot

Virginia

4.15/5  rDev +5.9%
look: 3.75 | smell: 4 | taste: 4.25 | feel: 4 | overall: 4.25

On tap at birch.

A - Pours a pitch-black color.

S - Grape, sour smells, some bourbon.

T - See smells. Some tar, some slight burning sensation.

M - Chewy, medium body.

O - A potent, bold, almost wine like beer. A bit different, but very solid. Worth a try.

Serving type: on-tap

03-05-2013 02:09:29 | More by Beer-A-Lot
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hiphops24

New York

4/5  rDev +2%

03-01-2013 02:54:29 | More by hiphops24
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mctizzz

California

4.25/5  rDev +8.4%

02-21-2013 01:28:41 | More by mctizzz
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GrindFatherBob

New York

2.5/5  rDev -36.2%

01-31-2013 02:04:18 | More by GrindFatherBob
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PeteRiz

Connecticut

3.75/5  rDev -4.3%

01-27-2013 14:34:39 | More by PeteRiz
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TubbyDullard

Minnesota

4/5  rDev +2%

01-23-2013 03:41:26 | More by TubbyDullard
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cuy50

Virginia

3.75/5  rDev -4.3%

01-23-2013 03:27:19 | More by cuy50
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CrazyDavros

Australia

3.75/5  rDev -4.3%
look: 3 | smell: 4 | taste: 4 | feel: 3 | overall: 3.5

Pours dark brown with a small head.
Nose shows golden syrup, brown sugar, candi sugar, sultanas. Very sweet smelling.
Very similar flavours. Lots of rich sweet notes. Bready malt, golden syrup, dried figs and soft booze.
Needs more carbonation to help cut the overt sweetness.

Serving type: bottle

01-19-2013 00:26:51 | More by CrazyDavros
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Jason

Massachusetts

3.5/5  rDev -10.7%

01-12-2013 04:36:20 | More by Jason
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doggydaddy

Pennsylvania

3.75/5  rDev -4.3%

01-10-2013 21:47:14 | More by doggydaddy
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Noël from Birrificio Le Baladin
88 out of 100 based on 100 ratings.