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La Terrible - Unibroue

Not Rated.
La TerribleLa Terrible

Displayed for educational use only; do not reuse.
BA SCORE
93
outstanding

1,872 Ratings
THE BROS
-
no score

(send 'em beer!)
Ratings: 1,872
Reviews: 900
rAvg: 4.17
pDev: 11.75%
Wants: 97
Gots: 198 | FT: 5
Brewed by:
Unibroue visit their website
Quebec, Canada

Style | ABV
Belgian Strong Dark Ale |  10.50% ABV

Availability: Year-round

Notes/Commercial Description:
No notes at this time.

(Beer added by: BeerAdvocate on 11-15-2002)
Beer: Ratings & Reviews
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Ratings: 1,872 | Reviews: 900 | Display Reviews Only:
Photo of Sammy
3.98/5  rDev -4.6%
look: 4.5 | smell: 4 | taste: 4 | feel: 3.5 | overall: 4

Winter beer seasonal availability. Very dark color in beautiful bottle. 750 ml too much, a smaller bottle would be just right. Can taste the alcohol, and bitterness. Alcohol not as masked as other Unibroue's. Can substitute for an average wine earlier in the meal.

Had another bottle 1.5 years later and it's spiciness and yeastiness went
well with cheese. Upgraded.

Sammy, Dec 01, 2003
Photo of t0rin0
3.5/5  rDev -16.1%

t0rin0, Mar 04, 2013
Photo of UCLABrewN84
3.79/5  rDev -9.1%
look: 3 | smell: 4 | taste: 3.75 | feel: 4 | overall: 3.75

Best before 11/15/16.

Pours an opaque brown with a foamy khaki head that settles to wisps of film on top of the beer. Small dots of lace slowly drip into the remaining beer on the drink down. Smell is of malt, caramel, dark fruit, and spice aromas. Taste is much the same with sweet malt and dark fruit flavors on the finish. There is a mild amount of spice bitterness and an alcohol kick on the palate with each sip. This beer has a good level of carbonation with a crisp and prickly mouthfeel. Overall, this is a pretty good beer with nice fruity flavors but it's fairly boozy in my opinion.

UCLABrewN84, Sep 13, 2013
Photo of djrn2
3.5/5  rDev -16.1%

djrn2, Jan 15, 2012
Photo of Thorpe429
4.15/5  rDev -0.5%
look: 4 | smell: 4.5 | taste: 4 | feel: 4.5 | overall: 4

On tap at Rustico - Alexandria (feels weird to have to specify the city now!) Reviewed from notes.

Pours a nice dark brown with a light tan head. Some lace as it falls down my glass. Nose brings a touch of booze along with some light dark fruits and some dark candy sugar. The taste adds in a bit of darkened sugar or caramel...maybe some molasses. Good dark fruits with a bit of sweetness. Medium feel with good carbonation. This is a nice example of the style, and it seems like it would age quite well.

Thorpe429, Oct 24, 2010
Photo of zestar
4.25/5  rDev +1.9%

zestar, Jul 01, 2014
Photo of nmann08
4/5  rDev -4.1%

nmann08, Dec 14, 2011
Photo of acurtis
3.5/5  rDev -16.1%

acurtis, Yesterday at 01:46 PM
Photo of metter98
4.33/5  rDev +3.8%
look: 4 | smell: 4 | taste: 4.5 | feel: 4 | overall: 4.5

A: The beer is cloudy and very dark amber (near black) in color and poured with a creamy beige head.
S: Aromas of dark fruits stand out prominently in the nose.
T: The taste is very similar to the smell and complex. It has a slight amount of sweetness with flavors of dark fruits and hints of spices and yeast.
M: It feels medium- to full-bodied and very smooth and creamy on the palate with a moderate amount of carbonation.
D: The beer is incredibly drinkable and goes down very smoothly.

metter98, Nov 14, 2010
Photo of brentk56
4.35/5  rDev +4.3%
look: 4.5 | smell: 4.5 | taste: 4.5 | feel: 4 | overall: 4

Appearance: Pours a cola brown color with a tan head that persists beautifully with splashy lacing scattered across the chalice

Smell: Caramel, dark fruit, pungent spice, balsa wood, funky yeast and alcohol

Taste: Starts with a rum-soaked fruity aspect, combined with chocolate and caramel; mid-palate, there is a phenolic, herbal balance; the finish is relatively dry, with some residual sweetness

Mouthfeel: Surprisingly light and carbonated for such a big beer

Drinkability: So powerful and complex, it is difficult to drink very much of this

brentk56, Mar 04, 2006
Photo of BuckeyeNation
4.3/5  rDev +3.1%
look: 3.5 | smell: 4 | taste: 4.5 | feel: 4 | overall: 4.5

Roasted hazelnut that betrays a hint of crimson when backlit with weak January sunshine. Orange edges add some amount of visual interest. The crown isn't impressive in the least. It's toasted tan in color and lacks any sort of quality texture or stickiness. It looks worse over time and never does grace the glass with any lace. Only the beer's color allows the appearance to be granted an above average score.

While I like the aroma, it isn't what I expected. I would think that a Belgian strong dark, especially one called La Terrible, would be more dark malty than this. It's fig and bruised apple fruity with a pleasing amount of clove spice from the yeast. More complexity would be welcome.

The flavor gets things solidly back on track. I wish the beer smelled like it tastes, but then the latter is always more important than the former. This 2004 edition is really drinking fine right now. The 'best by' date on the label is 08-08-2007, while the brewery's website says the bottle should be good for 10+ years. I decided not to take a chance and popped it open today.

More than most Unibroue products, La Terrible actually tastes Belgian. It's a wonderful version of the style that compares favorably with some of the best I've ever had. For whatever reason, the flavor is darker and richer than the nose suggested it would be. Whatever complexity was missing has been found. Each mouthful is bursting with black raspberries, raisins, cherry tobacco, molasses and dark candi sugar.

Weaving in and out, tying it all together into a neat little package, is a spectacular clove and cardamom-intensive yeastiness that becomes even more bold as I get into the bottom half of the bottle. La Terrible is a little sweeter than most BSDAs, but that's how I prefer beer of this style to be. Tangy and spicy make sure that sweet doesn't get out of control. Warming brings about an almost unfathomable amount of depth. I hope 2004 wasn't the final year of brewing because I'd love to buy a a case of this stuff and lay it down for a few years.

I just realized that I haven't commented on the alcohol. That's because it's nowhere to be found on the palate. It is, however, beginning to make my head spin, so I'd better quit gulping and start sipping. Contrary to the mouthfeels on most Unibroue beer (which I find to be too light) this one is perfect for the style. It has a minor amount of chewiness and a lightly sticky finish. It also has a Belgian-like amount of carbonation that is further reason to applaud its authenticity... never mind the country of origin.

This stunning beer is, by far, my favorite Unibroue offering and is the best beer I've ever had from the Great White North. It's a classic BSDA that I would have sworn hailed from Belgium if I had encountered it in a blind taste test. Forget the overall score, it deserves to be thought of as a '4.5' beer at least. La Terrible is a great name, but a more appropriate one would be La Fantastique.

BuckeyeNation, Jan 29, 2007
Photo of Phyl21ca
4/5  rDev -4.1%
look: 4 | smell: 4 | taste: 4 | feel: 4 | overall: 4

Bottle - Poured a pitch-black beer with a nice huge dark head. Carbonation is excellent and aroma is really vinous with alcohol also perceptible. Complex flavor that includes spice, raisin and a bit of roastiness. Overall, this is a great beer that could rival some of the great strong Belgian ale but the alcohol flavor is bit too strong and should have been subtler.

Phyl21ca, Feb 16, 2004
Photo of BEERchitect
4.33/5  rDev +3.8%
look: 4 | smell: 4.5 | taste: 4.5 | feel: 4 | overall: 4

A great Belgian Dark Strong Ale that differs from the Trappist varieties quite a bit- but is no lesser in quality.

La Terrible begins with a dark brown, purple-ish glow. Though dark, the beer does show some light along with its modest haze. A timid blanket of foam rises and covers the beer while omitting lacing. The look is good but not great.

Aroams are very fruity with plumbs and grapes; backed by a foundation of pilsner malts, dark candi sugar, and raison-y malts this beer gives a lot of aromatic qualities.

Flavors of sweet malts and sugars give the impression of cola, bread crusts, and subtle pilsner malts. But the bread-and-butter of the beer lies in the yeast which delivers a punch of fruity esters (plumbs, grapes, raisons, figs, dates, nuts, and other stone fruits). Phenols give light woodiness or smokiness while the alcohols ride a fine line with fusal notes.

Though quite dry and warming, the beer delivers a digestable feel that is very easy to drink; far too easy for the alcohol punch that the beer delivers. The beer is nearly effortless to drink.

BEERchitect, Sep 16, 2005
Photo of Texasfan549
4/5  rDev -4.1%

Texasfan549, Dec 21, 2011
Photo of mikesgroove
4.22/5  rDev +1.2%
look: 4 | smell: 4 | taste: 4.5 | feel: 4 | overall: 4

I had not had this one in a long time, and certainly had never reviewed it but running across its path again lately made me think about it and decide it was time for a revisit. Served cold and poured into a small pint glass.

The pour was dark, nice dark brown color with some light ruby highlights when held up to the glass. Nice head of off white clings to the sides of the glass for all that it is worth. Big notes of prunes, dark fruits and light grain are the most notable right out of the gate. Warming brings this to the forefront even more so as the richness and depth of the aroma come forward. Each sip brought a different nuance to the table, dark fruit, figs, plums; pears are all well represented here. Really nicely done I have to admit. Nice big malts and a dry, almost spicy finish leaving you instantly looking around for more.

Overall I was impressed. This really a top notch and very well done example from Unibroue. I would have no trouble going this route again; in fact I cannot wait to.

mikesgroove, Apr 18, 2010
Photo of kjkinsey
5/5  rDev +19.9%

kjkinsey, Dec 05, 2011
Photo of GRG1313
4.38/5  rDev +5%
look: 4 | smell: 4 | taste: 4.5 | feel: 4.5 | overall: 4.5

Pours very dark brown with orange tint. Big carmel/toffee nose.

Big flavors; gigantic flavor of cooked fruit and apricots with black coffee and sweet malt. Finish is medium/short and stops this from being cloyingly sweet.

Soda pop character but good. Layered flavors of sweet malt, figs, prunes, raisins and brown sugar but with hints of cola and with a Dr. Pepper flavored finish.

Different but nice.

GRG1313, Jul 07, 2009
Photo of spycow
4.25/5  rDev +1.9%

spycow, Jan 14, 2013
Photo of jaydoc
4/5  rDev -4.1%

jaydoc, Oct 21, 2013
Photo of ChainGangGuy
4.33/5  rDev +3.8%
look: 4 | smell: 4.5 | taste: 4.5 | feel: 4 | overall: 4

750ml bottle - $8.48 at Sherlock's in Marietta, Georgia. Best Before: 2-26-2012.

Appearance: Pours an opaque, walnut brown body with an appropriately tall, foamy, light tan head.

Smell: Sweet-scented, malty nose coming across as a plated up Shoofly Pie for dessert along with some secondary notes of dark fruits and spice.

Taste: Dark, not-quite-roasty maltiness with flavors of molasses, dark brown sugar, dark candi sugar, and sweetened cocoa-flavored coffee. Burst of black cherry, sour cherry, and cooked raisin fruitiness. Earthy spiciness with a hint of black pepper and ground cardamom. Small touch of alcohol warmth, though, as it warms somewhat, it becomes a moderate pinch of alcohol warmth. Finishes dry but also malty with a taste of, well, again, I'd say Shoofly Pie, but I feel that reference would be entirely lost on most.

Mouthfeel: Medium-plus body. Well carbonated with a tingly, altogether bubbly mouthfeel.

Drinkability: Paired remarkably well with the movie "Casino". I'd pair the last third with some food to see how it goes, but I only have yogurt and ramen, so... Easily one of the better Unibroue brews I've had, but, sadly, not one I often see around in Georgia. Ah well, such is life. Drinks surprisingly easy for purportedly being above 10%.

ChainGangGuy, Aug 08, 2009
Photo of Knapp85
3.48/5  rDev -16.5%
look: 4 | smell: 3.5 | taste: 3.5 | feel: 3 | overall: 3.5

Saw this at my local shop and thought it'd be cool to get my friend two bottles of this on his sons 2nd birthday to prep him for the Terrible Twos. He loved the idea and we broke open a bottle that night.

The beer poured out as a muddy brown color with a light tan head on it. The nose was spicy and had a bit of a booze smell going on. The taste was really good at first then it had a bit of a metallic flavor, I was worried that this was going to be the way the rest would taste but it went away. The flavors that remained were of spice, booze and some earthy bread in the aftertaste. The mouthfeel wasn't too bad, overall a pretty decent brew.

Knapp85, Jun 08, 2011
Photo of oberon
3.98/5  rDev -4.6%
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.

oberon, Feb 01, 2004
Photo of westcoastbeerlvr
3.75/5  rDev -10.1%

westcoastbeerlvr, Nov 15, 2011
Photo of largadeer
3/5  rDev -28.1%

largadeer, Apr 19, 2014
Photo of zeff80
4.03/5  rDev -3.4%
look: 4.5 | smell: 4 | taste: 4 | feel: 4 | overall: 4

A - Poured out a dark brown/burgandy color with a fomay, bubbly, light-brown, three-finger head that left some good lace.

S - It smelled of dried fruit, like raisins. Also, a plum aroma. It had malty and floral notes, too.

T - It tasted of dried fruit (raisin) and had I nice malty sweetness. There were also hints of clove and spices.

M - It was soft and smooth. A medium to heavy-bodied beer with a warm alcohol presence.

D - This is another outstanding beer from Unibroue. It holds up well to all of their other beers and other beers of this style.

zeff80, Feb 27, 2008
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La Terrible from Unibroue
93 out of 100 based on 1,872 ratings.