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Les Bière Des Sans Culottes - Brasserie La Choulette

Not Rated.
Les Bière Des Sans CulottesLes Bière Des Sans Culottes

Displayed for educational use only; do not reuse.
BA SCORE
90
outstanding

122 Ratings
THE BROS
-
no score

(send 'em beer!)
Ratings: 122
Reviews: 99
rAvg: 4.03
pDev: 11.17%
Wants: 21
Gots: 4 | FT: 0
Brewed by:
Brasserie La Choulette visit their website
France

Style | ABV
Bière de Garde |  7.00% ABV

Availability: Year-round

Notes/Commercial Description:
No notes at this time.

(Beer added by: BeerAdvocate on 07-01-2002)
Beer: Ratings & Reviews
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Ratings: 122 | Reviews: 99 | Display Reviews Only:
Photo of Sammy
4.1/5  rDev +1.7%
look: 4 | smell: 4 | taste: 4 | feel: 4 | overall: 4.5

Damn good biere de garde, had at Beer Bistro. Spicey yeasty and smooth drinking. Nice permanent foaminess built in. Nice cidery colour. Some complexity to the taste, great alone, and according to my drinking buddy, with his meal. From France you say?

Sammy, Dec 20, 2005
Photo of t0rin0
4/5  rDev -0.7%

t0rin0, Nov 12, 2012
Photo of Thorpe429
2.4/5  rDev -40.4%
look: 4 | smell: 2.5 | taste: 2 | feel: 3 | overall: 2.5

Bottle courtesy of Huhzubendah. Served in a taster glass. Pours a clear golden color with a nice white head. The nose starts out with some grain and a bit of yeast, but is then somewhat overtaken by skunked hops. Very unfortunate. Flavor is similarly skunked, but to an even greater level. Light-medium body and high carbonation. Ugh, another victim of the green bottle.

Thorpe429, Dec 15, 2012
Photo of metter98
3.99/5  rDev -1%
look: 4.25 | smell: 3.75 | taste: 4 | feel: 3.75 | overall: 4.25

A: The beer is clear light golden yellow in color and has a moderate amount of carbonation. It poured with a finger and a half high bright white head that has excellent retention properties and consistently left a thin head covering the surface along with some lacing down the sides of the glass.
S: There are aromas of fruity yeast in the nose along with some hints of farmhouse yeast.
T: Like the smell, the taste has some fruity flavors of apples but is a little more balanced with notes of farmhouse yeast and hints of grainy malts and earthiness.
M: It feels light- to medium-bodied on the palate and has a bode rate amount of carbonation. No dryness is noticeable.
O: This beer is very easy to drink, partly because it isn't as malty or earthy compared to other beers in the style. It would pair very well with French cuisine.

metter98, Feb 24, 2013
Photo of BuckeyeNation
4.13/5  rDev +2.5%
look: 4.5 | smell: 4 | taste: 4 | feel: 4 | overall: 4.5

Beautifully rich sunset gold with a fine yeasty haze. The head is as stunning as the heads on the finest Belgian ales; no surprise since quality brewing doesn't stop at the Franco-Belgian border. It's French vanilla is color, creamily airy and as sticky as all get out with multiple lace bridges connecting cap and glass. I love the look of world-class saisons and bieres de garde and this one can easily be counted among the best.

The nose is low on power; although, to be fair, there's quite a bit of head between me and the beer. Adding more liquid to the glass brings it closer, but also results in more foam. The nose is golden fruity with a mild white peppery spiciness. It smells neither malt-dominant, nor hop-dominant. Yeast-dominant perhaps?

This is definitely good beer, if a little too light (in both flavor and body) to be considered great. I'll reserve final judgement until I've entered the bottom portion of the bottle where most of the yeasties have congregated. The initial burst of flavor is wonderful, I just wish that it lingered a bit longer on the taste buds rather than rushing off to deliver the increasingly soporific effects of a 7% ABV.

The Beer Without Pants is fruitier and sweeter than I remember most biere de gardes being, although it isn't all that sweet in the general sense. The flavor profile consists of ripe buttery pears in a light sugar syrup, sprinkled with toasted sourdough bread crumbs, coriander and clove. As I said, this is delicious beer whose only real fault is a lack of commitment on the palate.

Subsequent pours don't murk up the appearance and don't intensify the flavor much at all. If you like beer of this style to be light, summery and insanely drinkable, then you'll love it. I'm tempted to grant a perfect score for drinkability, but drinkability is too enmeshed in my love of a beer's flavor for me to go that route here.

The body does firm up a bit with warming, but is still closer to light than to medium. To its credit, the beer easily avoids a watery mouthfeel while walking the 'light tightrope' with consummate skill. It's too bad that the bubbles had other things to do; the mouthfeel is in need of a little zestiness at this point in the proceedings.

In the final analysis, Les Biere Des Sans Culottes is a well-crafted biere de garde that would benefit, in my considered opinion, by being ever so slightly bigger in all respects. What's there is fabulous, I just want more of it.

BuckeyeNation, Jul 09, 2006
Photo of BEERchitect
3.73/5  rDev -7.4%
look: 4 | smell: 4 | taste: 3.5 | feel: 3.5 | overall: 4

Rustic grain flavor, well melded maturity, and deep levels of refreshment all pay tribute to the French Biere de Garde style with Belgian influence and French prestige.

Pouring a bright honey-gold color, the beer carries a mild haze that seems to have been largely cleared by age. Champagne-like carbonation pays tribute to Belgian beers as it builds a fluid stark white head with great retention that's constantly fueled by the carbonation underneath and lacing with a mix of intricate patterns and isolated pockets of foam.

Firm pilsner aromas hold a rich bread, yeast, and sweet scent that hedges on butter and corn. Elegant malt aromatics borrow fruit notes from the yeast and form the scent of grilled apples, peaches, and figs. Very light in floral hop presence, a faint herbal tea-like note can be detected under the corn and grain.

Grainy-sweet to taste, and with the light starchy flavor of fresh kilned barley, the beer's rustic malt flavors reveal light corn, caramel, and honey flavors to match that of bread dough and flaky buttery crust. The full flavors of malt support the esters of apple, peach, apricot, and figs that all seem in the over ripened variety. Balanced by mild acidity and light pepper and smoke from the phenolic yeast compounds, somehow the ale escapes any meaningful hop flavor or bitterness. Instead a light taste of raw tobacco and tea leaves support the sweetness and buttery roundness. Slight fruit acidity and an overall flinty minerally taste cleans up the beer heading into finish.

Full bodied for pilsner-rich ales, the starchy body is aided by the fullness of buttery compounds that coat the mouth and give fatty impressions. Those fuller textures linger deep into the finish and gives the beer a satisfying and extended closure of straw-like medium dryness and mineral snap.

While it's easy to read too much of the saison style into this beer, its fuller impressions and malt-forward demeanor gives this beer a juicy malt profile and refined mellow taste. This beer is a very rewarding and round version of the style.

BEERchitect, Jul 31, 2012
Photo of Phyl21ca
3.58/5  rDev -11.2%
look: 5 | smell: 3.5 | taste: 3.5 | feel: 3.5 | overall: 3.5

Bottle: Poured a hazy light yellow color ale with a super large foamy head with good retention and good lacing. Aroma of light funky notes with solid medium sweet malt backbone. Taste is also sweeter then I would have expected with good notes of light barnyard yeast. Body is quite full with great bottle conditioning and great carbonation with no apparent alcohol. Well brewed thought maybe a tad too sweet for my taste.

Phyl21ca, Feb 27, 2011
Photo of GRG1313
3.75/5  rDev -6.9%

GRG1313, Sep 20, 2014
Photo of jaydoc
3.75/5  rDev -6.9%

jaydoc, Dec 14, 2013
Photo of ChainGangGuy
2.65/5  rDev -34.2%
look: 2.5 | smell: 2.5 | taste: 2.5 | feel: 3 | overall: 3

Appearance: Pours a hazy, sediment-enriched blonde body with a thin white head.

Smell: That's one screwy scent. Crackers and diced, cooked potatoes. Oh, and it certainly smells cidery, with strong notes of musty apples.

Taste: A tart, pressed flower flavor with just a bit of sugary sweetness that carries through to the lingering, tart finish. No real hops to speak of.

Mouthfeel: Thin-bodied. Soft carbonation.

Drinkability: Man, this really makes me miss the Lost Abbey Avant Garde. I should see if I still a bottle or two around.

ChainGangGuy, Jun 13, 2007
Photo of oberon
4.03/5  rDev 0%
look: 4.5 | smell: 3.5 | taste: 4 | feel: 4 | overall: 4.5

I really enjoy a Biere de Garde with a meal or by itself,a vastly underrated style in my humble opinion.This poured into an oversized wine glass a rich full golden with just a hint of orange hue,a clingy near creamy-like white head atop.Aromas of wet grain and some mineral,and slightly sweet dough.Flavors have a big pilsner malt bready quality that alot of the style do,some semi sweet toffee and light white pepper spice round out the finish.I like it,a beer to savor and enjoy,very nice.

oberon, Mar 28, 2009
Photo of nickfl
4.25/5  rDev +5.5%
look: 4 | smell: 4.5 | taste: 4 | feel: 4.5 | overall: 4.5

A - Two fingers of creamy, off white head settles slowly and leaves minor lace. The body is clear and dark gold in color.

S - Spicy and peppery with clean malt and notes of pepper, vanilla, mango and pineapple.

T - Rich malty flavor up front, followed by the same yeast character as in the nose. Lots of pepper and vanilla in the middle complimented by pineapple. The hops come out for the finish with the spicy, herbal, flavors of european hops and moderate bitterness.

M - Thick, chewy body with moderate carbonation and a dry finish.

D - An easily drinkable and quite complex example of the style. The aroma characteristics are especially nice.

nickfl, May 03, 2008
Photo of feloniousmonk
4.43/5  rDev +9.9%
look: 4 | smell: 4.5 | taste: 4.5 | feel: 4 | overall: 4.5

Surprised that this bottle made it into the U.S. with this label intact, topless lass and all, ...maybe it's less lascivious, maybe the nipples aren't so distinct...
Appearance: slightly hazy, fully peachy, tangeriney color, with a fine layer of fizzy white foam, that alas, dissipates too soon.
Aroma: soft, yet fruity, orange is brightest here, citrus is strong, and there's a particularly spicy factor at work as well, lush and invigorating.
Taste: mmm, fruity, yet mild, mellow, medium body, small finish, but flavor is just right. Not sure where the difference and deviation is between this and the regular Choulettes...did they drop their trousers while brewing?
No, it is significantly different, all my jokes aside, it is smoother, fruitier, without the lemony/orange citric taste, very mellow, easy-drinking, a perfect choice for dinner, picnics, celebrations, patting yourself on the back, whatever it takes. Very well-rounded, the malt meets the hops almost perfectly, and the flavor remains king. Mmm, tasty, and this is so amiable and perfectly integrated, that, were it more affordable and readily reachable, I'd take it on more often as an everyday brew. Just loosen the belt, lose the fancypants and go "sans culottes", I says...

feloniousmonk, Jan 19, 2004
Photo of jwc215
4.15/5  rDev +3%
look: 4 | smell: 4.5 | taste: 4 | feel: 3.5 | overall: 4.5

Best by 17.06.08:

Pours golden with a foamy white head. Some lacing sticks.

The smell is of a floral bouquet with grassy/grainy undertones and lightly toasted bread. Champagne-like fruitiness mixed in.

The taste is lighter than the taste, though still well-done. Yeasty and oily with some caramelish sweetness. Late-setting hops give it some bitterness in the dry finish.

Nor complex for style, but tasty in its simplicity and light body. Well-hidden alcohol and lack of spicy complexities make this very easy to drink.

For a fuller example, try this brewery's Ambree. After having different offerings of this brewery, I do realize that La Choulette has a wonderful yeast strain, giving their beers a uniquely wonderful taste. This could use more flavor and body, but the aroma and drinkability make this a shining star of a mild/light example of the style.

jwc215, Sep 16, 2007
Photo of Rochefort10nh
5/5  rDev +24.1%

Rochefort10nh, Nov 25, 2011
Photo of Gueuzedude
4.13/5  rDev +2.5%
look: 4 | smell: 3.5 | taste: 4.5 | feel: 4 | overall: 4

Pours a beautiful, clear, light gold color. It is crowned by a thick off white head. Aromas of lemon zest, grain, and hay are found in the nose. Overall though, the aromas are quite light. Mmm, this beer is much tastier than the faint aroma would suggest. The beer is lightly sweet and it has a medium full body, which is a nice surprise. The taste is redolent with lemon, green apple, bergamot, grain, and a tannic bite. There is a bit of bitterness in the finish, which is followed by an astringency and some tingling acidity. A nice bit of toasted biscuit and toasted malt flavors come through as this beer opens up. This beer is definitely quite malty.

Gueuzedude, Apr 28, 2004
Photo of Halcyondays
4.08/5  rDev +1.2%
look: 3.5 | smell: 4.5 | taste: 4 | feel: 4 | overall: 4

750 mL green bottle, why green, stop it, thankfully this bottle shows no signs of skunk, this is a classic beer, I know of it thanks to the legendary Michael Jackson, and I've wanted to try it for years,

A: Pours a rather clear goldenrod to yellow orange. Light soapy white head, with good retention, mild lace.

S: Very interesting nose. I get a lot of walnut and peanut oil initially, but this blows off and by the end of the bottle it's more classic biere de garde in the Jenlain style. Lots of grassiness and sourdough bread.

T: Nice nuttiness initially, with some pils style malt and earthy hops. Very much to style, some herbal ale characteristics come in on the back end.

M: Light to medium-bodied, frothy carbonation, real nice piney grassy aftertaste.

O: Nice to see a 750 under $10, and this biere de garde is quite good. Complex, not as good as Jenlain Ambree, but few are. Good stuff, it really is a nice beer.

Halcyondays, Jun 03, 2012
Photo of Gavage
3.65/5  rDev -9.4%
look: 3.5 | smell: 3.5 | taste: 3.5 | feel: 4 | overall: 4

Appearance: clear golden yellow in color. One inch white head with large bubbles. Decent amounts of lace develop.

Smell: grass, apples, and a soft spiciness comes through to the nose.

Taste: green apples, grass, grapes, hints of spiciness and a touch of earthiness are wrapped in a hearty Saaz-styled hop bitterness.

Mouthfeel: very crisp throughout. Relatively clean aftertaste for the flavorful profile. Medium bodied beers.

Drinkability: easy drinking beer that goes well with simple pork chop or tenderloin meal. Mildly refreshing.

Gavage, Nov 06, 2007
Photo of rhoadsrage
4/5  rDev -0.7%
look: 4 | smell: 4 | taste: 4 | feel: 4 | overall: 4

(Served in a tulip glass)

A- This beer pours a light golden yellow clear body with a strong carbonation of tiny bubbles and big white head of large airy bubbles. It has a nice soapy lacing with each sip.

S- Very light smell of soft malt and some fresh raw grain with a faint earthiness.

T-The taste is very smooth and has a slight sweetness but very light. Some raw grains with a hint of pale malt and light toasted malt. Slight carbonic acid taste in the dry finish. A very light hop bitterness in the finish aswell.

M- Medium-light body with some fizz to it.

D-This beer is very light and crisp and has a nice sweetness to it that is very faint. The malt and hops have good depth for as light as they are. Very pleasant to drink and the subtle taste makes me want to take another sip.

rhoadsrage, Sep 19, 2005
Photo of Huhzubendah
4/5  rDev -0.7%
look: 4 | smell: 4 | taste: 4 | feel: 4 | overall: 4

A: Straw, sunset hues with decent head and lacing.

S: Nice floral notes, smells similar to a saison, slight farm aroma.

T: Interesting beer. After some contemplation, I definitely get a flavor similar to tea or tea bags. Floral notes come out nicely. This beer is decent, but lacks any memorable or distinguishing characteristics other than perhaps tea bags) that would cause me to want it again.

M: Smooth and easy to drink, moderately thin bodied.

D: Easy to drink, though after finishing my glass, I was ready for something a bit more interesting.

Huhzubendah, Apr 30, 2010
Photo of afsdan
4.5/5  rDev +11.7%

afsdan, May 22, 2014
Photo of BillRoth
4/5  rDev -0.7%

BillRoth, Dec 07, 2013
Photo of biegaman
3.83/5  rDev -5%
look: 4.5 | smell: 3.5 | taste: 4 | feel: 4 | overall: 3.5

Straw-yellow to the light, perfectly clear and bubbled Champagne-style, this is a handsome and delectable looking ale. Be careful smelling it - I had hardly dipped into the glass but with this tall and fluffy a head it's incredibly easy to get your nose wet. And as the glass (which becomes mummified) will attest, a foam mustache is also unavoidable. (It might be a perfect score if not for the insistence of yeast sediment.)

Saisons have been known to have some pretty funky characteristics and, indeed, this one, although considerably light-struck thanks to the green bottle, smells remarkably (oddly) like Dijon mustard. How very French. While token notes of wheat malt and barnyard must are appreciated, there's a distinctive Dijon-like spice that almost makes me want to sneeze.

Skunkiness is noted in the aroma, but the taste confirms that this beer is still in fine form (and nothing like the bland European lagers we usually find skunked in green glass bottles). More refreshing than complex, it tastes of hay, liquid grain, golden apple and is peppered with a little bit of zesty spice. Continental malt is appreciated on the finish, but it comes to taste like corn starch with hints of Vegemite. It's more likeable when cold.

Living so close to one another, it's obvious the French and Belgians exchanged a few secrets. This French ale captures the musty, farmhouse character of Belgian classics while combining it with classic Champagne-esque bubbling and the fresh acidity, muscular body and dry finish of a Chablis. Indeed, this is a seamless substitute for a mild white wine.

But alas the musty and corn-y elements make the beer significantly less appealing by the second half of the bottle. The skunkiness (why use green glass?) grows more apparent and the graininess becomes oily and overly sweet. The yeasty invaders make themselves known, contributing off-notes that are a little sour and not so tasty. The marks must be lowered.

Whether labeled a saison or a bière de garde, the fact remains that this is, as the late Michael Jackson wrote, where France meets Belgium. While it needs some improvements (no green glass please!), there's no sense offering this beer in anything less than the 750ml bottle; it is the ideal thing to share amongst friends or guests, especially where things like cheese or crackers are served, and is a delightful accompaniment to a relaxing weekend afternoon.

biegaman, Aug 14, 2011
Photo of Viggo
4/5  rDev -0.7%
look: 4 | smell: 4 | taste: 4 | feel: 4 | overall: 4

Bottle opened at biegamans Summer Saison tasting, thanks Jan!

Pours a clear straw yellow, light bit of haze, thin white head forms, drops to a thin ring, not much lacing. Smell is nice, sweet and sugary, dry toast middle, strawberries, quite grainy, bran cereal, oats, different take but neat. Taste is similar, bran, vanilla/brown sugar, toast, quite malty, some spice, honey, nice finish. Mouthfeel is medium bodied with medium carbonation, goes down smooth, the graininess is pretty neat because its so complex. Thanks Jan!

Viggo, Jul 17, 2008
Photo of Bighuge
4.2/5  rDev +4.2%
look: 4 | smell: 4 | taste: 4 | feel: 4 | overall: 5

Hazy looking straw color. A dense off-white head recedes to a collar and a few islands. The aroma is musty and fruity with a spattering of grapes. The fruitiness on the nose is very muted on the tongue. Instead, there is substantial must, a little leather, tinges of alcohol and some evidence of lime juice. This is a unique beverage. Some very slight sourness and tartness. A little bit of a dry finish. Body is light to medium and mouthfeel is effervescent. Nice little farmhouse ale. Very drinkable.

Bighuge, Mar 02, 2003
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Les Bière Des Sans Culottes from Brasserie La Choulette
90 out of 100 based on 122 ratings.