La Terrible - Unibroue

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La TerribleLa Terrible

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2,043 Ratings
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Ratings: 2,043
Reviews: 919
rAvg: 4.16
pDev: 11.54%
Wants: 109
Gots: 288 | FT: 6
Brewed by:
Unibroue visit their website
Quebec, Canada

Style | ABV
Belgian Strong Dark Ale |  10.50% ABV

Availability: Year-round

Notes & Commercial Description:
Beer added by: BeerAdvocate on 11-15-2002

No notes at this time.
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Ratings: 2,043 | Reviews: 919
Reviews by gonzo46and2:
Photo of gonzo46and2
4.32/5  rDev +3.8%
look: 4 | smell: 4.5 | taste: 4.5 | feel: 4 | overall: 4

Christmas gift from Rich thanks buddy.

Poured a bit too fast and ended up with an enormous head. Took forever to go down and left clumpy lace. Dark near black but not opaque.

Very much like a true belgian strong ale one the nose. Stands out from othe unibrue lineup. Yeasty fruit esters and a bit of spice. Dessert-like.

Sweet up front and a bit heavy with a slightly bitter finish.

More User Reviews:
Photo of oberon
3.98/5  rDev -4.3%
look: 4.5 | smell: 4 | taste: 4 | feel: 4.5 | overall: 3.5

Pours a deep deep brown with a great slight off white sticky head,aroma is fresh and malty sweet with a light smokey note.Taste has bunch of different compnents definent raisin and candied sugar with smokiness that lingers in the finish along with some ever so slight tartness.Its been awhile since I have had a Unibroue beer until today and they were well missed.

Photo of don1481
4.5/5  rDev +8.2%

Appearance: Pours a very dark brown that light barely can get through. Has an off white head that gradually diminishes and leaves nice lacing on the glass.

Smell: smells of sweetness and alcohol. Kind of a plum smell with spice notes.

Taste: sugar plum fairies with spice and the warming nature of alcohol, but the alcohol is definitely in the background. This is really good stuff.

Mouthfeel: pretty clean feel. Mild after taste.

Overall: for less than $10 for a 750 ml bottle, this is outstanding value for the quality. These guys make great beer at very attainable price points.

Photo of Popsinc
4.5/5  rDev +8.2%
look: 4.5 | smell: 4.5 | taste: 4.5 | feel: 4.5 | overall: 4.5

Aged 1 year before opening Aug 10/03........

Appearance: 750ml corked bottle. A very dark brown, almost black, pour with a huge tan head that holds up well. Plenty of active carbonation as well.

Smell: Malty and sweet. Dark raisiny-sweet nose with raw sugar hints throughout. Just a touch of light maple syrup.

Taste: Dry and malty off the top. The taste quickly turns towards a dark fruit sweetness highlighted by raisin and plum. Moderate spiciness and an obvious alcohol kick. Plenty of body and complexity. The finish is very warm and reminds me very much of a nice port or sherry.

Mouthfeel: Dry off the top and very full. Plenty of active carbonation accompanies the complexities of this beer well. Smoothes out towards the finish.

Drinkablilty: I loved this beer. Complex and ever changing in my mouth. What i would consider a perfect after dinner drink or even an adequate night cap. Excellent. A world class brew.

Photo of RoyalT
4.94/5  rDev +18.8%
look: 4 | smell: 5 | taste: 5 | feel: 5 | overall: 5

Appearance – This is the darkest of the Unibroues that I have tasted thus far (I have eight under my belt not counting this one). I really had to work the pour to get a head.

Smell – The signature Unibroue yeast comes out beautifully in the nose. The toasted malt compliments the bready aroma along with undertones of plums and dates. There’s also some table sugar floating around.

Taste – This is perfection of the yeast flavor. It almost tastes like a tremendous dunkel weizen with a little spicing. There’s some typical coriander and maybe a little pepper, but this one is all about the amazing dark yeast body. This is tight, distinct, and very impressive.

We also have some deep fruitiness to help things along. Apricots, cherries, plums, and table sugar give this a sweet finish. This is awesome.

Mouthfeel – Big carbonation and very full without a hint of the enormous ABV.

Drinkability – This went down incredibly well. If you like bready weizen or BSDAs, you MUST give this one a try.

Comments – I was just blown away by this offering from Unibroue. They have always amazed me, but this was much unexpected. The dark bottle and bland labeling looks kind of like a marketing gimmick, but this is the real deal. Personal preference: There’s maybe half a dozen beers I’d put above this one.

Update – I was beside myself after reviewing this back in October 2003 so thought that I would re-review it with a 2004 vintage. Man, oh man, I couldn’t wait to log on to BA to raise all of my ratings just to find that I had fived everything but the Appearance. There’s not much of a head to this one but other than that this beer if perfect.

Photo of DaPeculierDane
3.98/5  rDev -4.3%
look: 4.5 | smell: 4 | taste: 4 | feel: 3.5 | overall: 4

The color of plum coffee with an alacrity to foam and froth violently in my chalice. Now to determine whether this is simply a scion of Maudite or Trois Pistoles or a beer unto its own.

Aromas are sherry, plums, oak tannins, pepper, toasted English muffin, and a slightly distracting sweet cola scent.

Tastes heavy and sweet. The alcohol is quite prominent. The oak and dark fruit come through in the flavor as does a slightly bittersweet coffee. Finish is pepper spiced.

Mouthfeel is strong and spicy, roast and mostly well balanced. The strength of the alcohol is lamentable but not quite overwhelming. Very warming on the palate and nasal passages.

Drinkability is mixed. This is easier to drink than Maudite and harder than Trois but it’s not as interesting as either. The lack of complexity and somewhat undercovered alcohol make this one less drinkable than the average Unibroue for me.

Still, this brew stands on its own, unique, interesting, and genial. Another winner from Canukistan.

Photo of wesbrownyeah
4.27/5  rDev +2.6%
look: 4 | smell: 4.5 | taste: 4 | feel: 4.5 | overall: 4.5

La Terrible. 10.5% alcohol content Belgian strong dark ale. 25.4 oz. corked bottle.
Bottled in 07/06.

A- Pours a very dark soda like fluid with a off-white foamy head that falls to a rim around the glass. Very little lacing that quickly falls back in to the brew.

S- Matured raisins and plums dominate the first impression of this strong ale. This is followed by sweet smells of alcohol esters and a mild fermented scent that is very nice to the nose. Great smell for such a strong beer.

T- Much like the smell this beer packs a very sweet alcohol flavor but covered by a combination of dark fruits like raisins, plums, and possibly even hints of almonds. Hardcore beer for hardcore drinkers.

M-D- Mouthfeel is very dry upfront and finishes with hard alcohol feel on the tongue. Smooth to the finish for me and drinkablity is excellent.. will try again if found.

Photo of steelerguy
4.23/5  rDev +1.7%
look: 4.5 | smell: 4 | taste: 4.5 | feel: 4 | overall: 4

A - Dark, not going to see through this, nice big tan head on the pour, stays around while you drink and leaves some good lacing.

S - Belgian yeast, banana nut bread, and a little toasted malt.

T - Lot of esters, alcohol, some dark fruit, a hint of hop fruitiness.

M - The dark looks makes you think heavy but it finishes very clean. There is a crispness from the light finish and carbonation, and a definite alcohol warmth.

D - You are not going to session this, but you certainly can enjoy a 750 ml bottle. The balance lets you enjoy the higher alcohol without it feeling too harsh.

Photo of lordofthewiens
4.32/5  rDev +3.8%
look: 4 | smell: 4.5 | taste: 4.5 | feel: 4 | overall: 4

750ml bottle, best before 8/8/07. Dark, dark red-black color, with a sweet, dark fruit aroma. Very pleasant. It tasted sweet, cherry, some chocolate. A little bit of warming spice in the background. Wonderful. Pretty well carbonated. An enjoyable beer to drink, didn't notice the 10.5% ABV.

Photo of grynder33
4.45/5  rDev +7%
look: 4.5 | smell: 4.5 | taste: 4.5 | feel: 4 | overall: 4.5

Poured dark, with a big head.Had a nice warm carmel malt smell, couldn't detect the alcohol(yet) Thick cocoa raisin taste on first sip, got a little sweeter on the second taste and the alcohol started to make its presence known.This is a wonderful complex brew,went out and bought another bottle right away. I'd rate this perfect if the texture was a little smoother

Photo of Beaver13
3.51/5  rDev -15.6%
look: 4 | smell: 3 | taste: 3.5 | feel: 3.5 | overall: 4

9/9/2003 750ml bottle. Pours a dark brownish-burgundy with a huge fizzy tan head that quickly dissipates.

The aroma is rather reserved - vinous berries and a little vanilla woodiness.

The flavor is also vinous and sherry like with a sweet malt backbone underneath. There's some plums, woodiness and pepper. The finish is tart fruity alcohol. It is medium to full bodied, not much carbonation but what there is is rather harsh.

Overall, I was a little disappointed with this. It is well made (nothing offensive about it) but a little too wine-like for me. It is surprisingly drinkable and hides the alcohol well (until it kicks you in the butt later).

Photo of generallee
4.53/5  rDev +8.9%
look: 5 | smell: 4.5 | taste: 4.5 | feel: 4.5 | overall: 4.5

Presentation: It was poured from a brown 750ml bottle into a tulip glass. This bottle is labeled "Best Before 02-26-2012".

Appearance: It has a very dark brown colored body that is nearly opaque. A tall tan head of big soft bubbles slowly settles down to a finger of thick and creamy foam. Lacing is thick, sticky and coats the glass.

Smell: The aroma is light and delicate. I get modest hints of sweet bready and mildly funky yeast with some fruity notes of dark cherries.

Taste/Palate: There are fruity/estery notes with hints of sweet-tart black cherries, dry yeast and bready maltiness. This is balanced by a very light herbal leafy hop presence that also adds a light bitterness and a slight mineral or metallic touch. The palate feels smooth and creamy with mellow yet very active carbonation and a good solid medium to full body.

Notes: Overall this is a very well made beer from a solid brewery.

Photo of Doomcifer
3.73/5  rDev -10.3%
look: 4 | smell: 3.5 | taste: 4 | feel: 3.5 | overall: 3.5

2005 Edition:

Poured a very ruddy, dark brown color with a decent head that retained rather well. Not much lacing, but many effervescent bubbles all over.

Smelled very fruity...much like champagne. Some malt, but nostly dark fruity aromas and alcohol.

Tastes very fruity and very carbonated like champagne. Fruit-like champagne as well. This tastes and feels like a beer/champagne hybrid. Maltiness, dark fruits ala dates, figs, raisins, some phenolic flavors, and a mild spiciness.

Mouthfeel is medium bodied and very bubbly.

Drinkablity is pretty good despite the 10% abv.

Photo of Beerswag
4.38/5  rDev +5.3%
look: 4.5 | smell: 4 | taste: 4.75 | feel: 4 | overall: 4.25

Bottle aged 1 year 6 months. Poured into chalice as recommended..has a very dark brown/almost black color, when held to light this beer shows slight tones of dark burgundy. Smell is rich of fruit, yeast, chocolate, and raisin..taste is much more complex than the smell, lots of black cherry up-front, raisin, chocolate, plum, caramel. A rich madeira wine essence and a little woodsy oak on the finish. Mouthfeel is medium bodied, with medium-heavy carbonation, especially for a "quad" strong ale. Bubbles are small and stickiness is present on the lacing. Overall a great beer, complex, balanced, and interesting enough. Aging has served this one very well. Serve with aged sharp/stinky cheeses, duck breast, filet mignon, desserts (cheesecake) blackberry chocolate mousse, salted carmel and almond bark.

Photo of merlin48
4.29/5  rDev +3.1%
look: 3.5 | smell: 4.5 | taste: 4.5 | feel: 4 | overall: 4

750ml corked and caged bottle. Emits a "pop" when cork is manually twisted off. Pours into a goblet a deep, ruby, brown, almost opaque color with a cocoa head that quickly dies away. Very little lacing. Cloves and spices hit the nose abruptly, with dark fruitiness soon following. Smell is of a native Belgian, with a tad of smoky mustiness. Taste is complex, but with a bomber bottle I've got the time to investigate. Wow, this is a big beer. Sweet malts are the backbone here, with raisins, figs, and prunes dominating the profile. Alcohol warming is noted, nice...!

This is a big beer. Enormous fruity flavour with enough abv to complicate things. Spend an afternoon with this bottle, and enjoy all the flavours and aromas.

Photo of Billolick
4.18/5  rDev +0.5%
look: 4 | smell: 3.5 | taste: 4.5 | feel: 4 | overall: 4.5

The usual Unibroue large bottle, caged/corked, with a tiny "Sep 9, 2003" stamped on the rear of the bottle. Not much energy upon twisting the cork out, minor tan head, leaving a slight tiny bubble film and minimal lacing, Pours darkest of shades of muddy brown. Nose of powdered sugar and cola. Strong, tasty, and bold brew, notes of cola, whiskey soaked prunes, brandy, dark candi sugars and smoked oily lifesavers. Vinious, warming alcohol present and enjoyable. Complex and worthy Canadian/Belgian.

Photo of badbeer
3.95/5  rDev -5%
look: 4 | smell: 4 | taste: 4 | feel: 3.5 | overall: 4

Pours a dark brown color with an off-white head but left no lacing. Smell is full of dark fruits, caramel, etc. Definitely on the sweet side, but nice. Taste has qualities reminiscent of red wine; it's also quite yeasty and has some different dark sugar flavors. Mouthfeel, the carbonation jumped on the tongue right away, seemed a little high paired with a medium body. A good beer definately worth trying, perhaps twice, but I wouldn't throw a fit over not finding any.

Photo of Mora2000
4/5  rDev -3.8%
look: 4 | smell: 4 | taste: 4 | feel: 4 | overall: 4

The beer pours a dark reddish-brown color with an off-white head. The aroma is strong dark fruit with some Belgian candy sugar, roasted malt, molasses, chocolate and caramel malt mixed in. The flavor is just as nice. I get a ton of dark fruit - cherries, grapes, plums - as well as roasted malt, brown sugar and caramel. The alcohol is well hidden for a beer of this alcohol amount. Medium mouthfeel and medium carbonation.

Photo of JohnnyBarman
4.12/5  rDev -1%
look: 4 | smell: 4.5 | taste: 4 | feel: 4 | overall: 4

750mL bottle from the Uptown Waterloo LCBO. Simple, effective bottle design. A brew I've been meaning to try for some time but haven't come across until recently.

Poured into a Belgian ale goblet. Dark brown, chestnut near the edges, and a good billowing head that settles into a thick ring with a few whirls on the surface. Lacing patches and all that good stuff.

Nose is quite wonderful, and really took about ten minutes of warming to get the full effect. Plum, raisin, a bit of banana, spice, Belgian yeast. Very inviting.

A great dark ale that would probably benefit from a year in the cellar. Similar tasting notes as in the nose, with a bit of oak, grape, and warming alcohol kick to the finish.

Mouthfeel is initially quite carbonated (too much so), but after a few minutes it mellows out considerably. Nice thickness to the brew, coats the tongue very well.

Might snap up a couple of bottles to hold on to in the cellar. Certainly a very strong offering from Unibroue, but it's in such tough company it's hard to notice a great difference between this and some of their other brews (with the high price under consideration!) Still, well worth a pick up, and quite enjoyable indeed!

Photo of Stonebreaker
3.83/5  rDev -7.9%
look: 4 | smell: 3.5 | taste: 4 | feel: 3.5 | overall: 4

Appearance: Very dark thinner than a stout with a head that quickly disappears.

Smell: To style, sweet figs with a hint of cherries.

Taste and Mouthfeel: This one has a sweet, effervescent flavor with figs and cherries, and a sturdy malt back bone. Spicy alcohol pulls no punches. The mouthfeel is very thin and bubbly and that along with the abv makes me suspect this is fermented at some point with champagne yeast. Not this brewery's best beer but still a good one.

Drinkability: 10.5% but still, I'll take it over some cheapie skunk beer any day on the drinkability scale.

Photo of magictrokini
4.08/5  rDev -1.9%
look: 4 | smell: 3.5 | taste: 4.5 | feel: 4 | overall: 4

Very nice. Right off, the 10.5% is completely masked by the smooth, sweet taste of this beer. Murky brown pour with a squatty off-white head. Fruity aroma similar to a lighter cognac. Dark fruits, malt, and sugar mix well with the malt. Palate was enjoyably light for a change. Its nice not to have every Belgian Strong be thick and syrupy. Overall, a great beer.

Photo of kingcrowing
3.16/5  rDev -24%
look: 4 | smell: 3 | taste: 3 | feel: 4 | overall: 3

750ml corked & caged bomber poured into a tulip.

Bottle opens with nary a hiss, luckily after pouring it a small light brown head develops atop a very dark brown to near black color - truly terrible looking. Nose is unsurprisingly classic unibroue yeast, it's malty and a bit sweet as well.

The mouthfeel is very nice, fairly light but rich and creamy with a good amount of carbonation leaving a slightly tingling finish. Taste is again classic unibroue yeast - you love it or you hate it, I think it's ok in this style but it isn't as good as many truble Belgian SDAs.

Overall it's ok and a very good value.

Photo of jsolack
4.17/5  rDev +0.2%
look: 3.5 | smell: 4 | taste: 4.5 | feel: 4 | overall: 4

Pours very dark brown and cloudy. Cloudyness is hard to detect due to the dark brew. Head is almost nonexistant. Looks nice but would like to see a little more head.

Spice and dark brown sugar comes first to nose. Slight smell of burnt hops. Overall very nice.

Excellent flavor. Spicy sweet flavor first come into mouth. Followed by a mild bitterness that doesn't linger very long. Finish has a mild liquorice flavor.

Light in mouth... isn't heavy but does not seem watery either.

Easy to drink beer... tastes great and finish is pleasent too. Overall very nice.

Photo of Osiris9588
4.07/5  rDev -2.2%
look: 3.5 | smell: 4 | taste: 4.5 | feel: 4 | overall: 3.5

750ml bottle, caged and corked, with an expiration date of 6/5/11. Pours a shade of strong black coffe, with just a glowing spot of mahogony on the bottom when held to light. The beige three-finger head shows only moderate retention, before settling into a one inch cap, leaving some slight lacing.

The aroma consists of yeast, vanilla, plum, some caramel, and roasted malt. The flaovr follows, allong with characteristics of dates and raisins, along with berry-like notes, sugar, and warming alcohol.

The mouth is full-bodied and complex, finishing sweetly with some sugar sticking to the lips. I might like a tad more carbonation. It's pretty drinkable, the alcohol is rather gentle for a 10.5 ABV, though the sweetness might get a bit cloying after more than one of these. Very solid overall.

Photo of ehammond1
4/5  rDev -3.8%
look: 4 | smell: 4 | taste: 4 | feel: 4 | overall: 4

On Tap

Churchill's Pub & Grille
San Marcos, CA

Dark, dark brown with just the hint of ruby edges. Thin cap. Some lacing.

A peppery and somewhat spicy aroma--surprising. There's definite aromas of sweet and dark fruits and Belgian yeast as well, but the peppery complex is certainly striking and dominant.

Again, more black pepper and a touch of spice in the flavor as well--I suppose that could be cardamom or clove. Rich and complex, lots of dark fruit pungency as well, and no hint at all of the incredible alcohol content.

Medium to thick mouthfeel. Quite luscious, a touch heavy, though appropriate.

A complex and spicy BSDA. One I'd love to try again--good thing I have a couple bottles waiting for me at home.

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La Terrible from Unibroue
93 out of 100 based on 2,043 ratings.