Jenlain Bière De Noël - Brasserie Duyck

Not Rated.
Jenlain Bière De NoëlJenlain Bière De Noël

Educational use only; do not reuse.
BA SCORE
81
good

70 Reviews
THE BROS
-
no score

(Send Samples)
Reviews: 70
Hads: 86
rAvg: 3.53
pDev: 15.3%
Wants: 1
Gots: 0 | FT: 0
Brewed by:
Brasserie Duyck visit their website
France

Style | ABV
Bière de Garde |  6.80% ABV

Availability: Winter

Notes & Commercial Description:
Beer added by: Dantes on 04-27-2004

No notes at this time.
View: Beers (12) | Events
Beer: Reviews & Ratings
Sort by:  Recent | High | Low | Top Raters
first ← prev | 1-25 | 26-50 | 51-75  | nextlast
Reviews: 70 | Hads: 86
Photo of Sammy
3.77/5  rDev +6.8%
look: 3.5 | smell: 4 | taste: 3.5 | feel: 4 | overall: 4

just a very good balanced taste profile beverage that worked for my friend and I for supper. Orange taste was apparent and not over the top. A nice biere de garde, moderated spicey taste overall , some citrus, not too bitter nor sweet perhaps it was aged some. (260 characters)

Photo of UCLABrewN84
3.75/5  rDev +6.2%
look: 3.5 | smell: 3.5 | taste: 4 | feel: 4 | overall: 3.5

Picked this up for a whopping $1.99 on clearance at Total Wine.

Pours a murky semi-opaque dark iced tea color with a tiny 1/2 tan head that fades to an oily film on the top of the beer. A few stands of random lace on the drink down. Smells of muted caramel, malt, and some citrus juices. Taste is of caramels, biscuity malt, and some light grapefruit flavors on the finish. There is no bitterness whatsoever with this beer. Very light but lively carbonation. Somewhat sticky and coating in the mouth. Overall, a good holiday offering that is still very tasty months after its release. (585 characters)

Photo of metter98
3.48/5  rDev -1.4%
look: 3.5 | smell: 3 | taste: 3.75 | feel: 3.5 | overall: 3.5

A: The beer is crystal clear reddish amber in color and has a moderate amount of visible carbonation. It poured with a half finger high beige head that gradually died down, leaving a thin layer of bubbles on the surface and a collar around the edge of the glass.
S: Faint aromas of dark fruits are present in the nose along with notes of earthly yeast and hints of sweet malts.
T: The taste is similar to the smell, but has stronger flavors of dark fruits along with notes of earthy yeast and sweet malts. Among the fruity flavors, plums seem to stand out in particular.
M: It feels medium-bodied on the palate and has a moderate amount of carbonation. As the beer warms up, some smoothness is noticeable.
O: This is an interesting Bière de Garde and seems to share some properties that you would expect from a Belgian Strong Dark Ale (except for the higher alcohol content). (876 characters)

Photo of brentk56
4.2/5  rDev +19%
look: 4.5 | smell: 4.5 | taste: 4 | feel: 4.5 | overall: 4

Appearance: After an explosion upon removal of the cage, the beer pours a cloudy amber color with a brobdignagian head with tremendous stickage

Smell: Rather fruity indeed, with plum and cherry esters and a biscuity undertone; Christmas pie, anyone

Taste: Sweet, but not cloying, up front, with caramel, plum and cherry flavors joined, at mid-palate, by a tart, zesty aspect; after the swallow, the sweet and tart flavors balance each other out nicely; slightly metallic aftertaste

Mouthfeel: Medium body with moderate to high carbonation

Drinkability: A very unusual beer that, while both sweet and tart, is nicely understated; other than the aftertaste, this is quite nice (678 characters)

Photo of StonedTrippin
3.7/5  rDev +4.8%
look: 4 | smell: 4 | taste: 3.5 | feel: 3 | overall: 4

on tap at j. ryans downtown syracuse. the pour is clear amber to cranberry juice in color, with the red hues really glowing. there is only a finger or two of lacey tan head, but it fades out in a few minutes. the nose is really remarkable, entirely unfamiliar. i smell some purple grape juice or must, the essence of fresh cherries, but nothiing sweet at all. theres also a rich caramel malt sweetness and something curious with the yeast as well, mildly but uniquely spiced. the flavors are really fruity up front, again with what seems to be grape being the most obvious. some spice in there as well, it isnt clove or allspice, but has a peculiarly holiday vibe to it. i appreciate this beers strange but comforting flavor profile, much apart from anything ive ever tasted. mouthfeel is a little odd for me. i would like either more body or more bubbles in this beer. without the body, it feels thin and watery, and without the bubbles, it lacks the pep needed to make a thinner beer feel good going down. that is definitely the weakness here. overall though i am so glad i got one of these, because while it is certainly a christmas beer, there is something unlike any other christmas beer about it, and that originality really makes its something to behold. (1,261 characters)

Photo of BuckeyeNation
2.33/5  rDev -34%
look: 3.5 | smell: 3 | taste: 2 | feel: 2 | overall: 2

The vintage is a mystery, but my bottle looks just like the bottle on the Brasserie Duyck website. My guess is that it might be the Holiday 2007 release. 2006 at the earliest.

After a loud POP! and a lingering wisp of gunsmoke, Noel pours a coppery shade of orange that isn't dark enough to be burnt. The pale orange-ecru crown has a cottage cheese-like texture and is beginning to lay down swaths of Swiss cheese-like lace. No more cheese references... I promise.

The nose is a wide range of things that don't add up to anything good. It's herbal, earthy, musky and very slightly spicy. The (minimal) spiciness has to be emanating from the hops since nothing other than the four basic ingredients are used. If the aroma is an accurate guide, some Christmas spices would have been welcome.

I'm not sure what's up with this brewery, but they can't seem to do anything right. Three of the four Brasserie Duyck ales that I drank prior to this one were close to unacceptable. Saint Druon De Sebourg (French Abbey Ale) was the only one good enough (barely so) to be considered average. My slightly higher hopes for Noel have been dashed with the first disappointing sip. Let's plow ahead.

The beer tastes like a slightly lower-ABV Euro strong ale that uses more caramel malt than usual. I have no earthly idea how this beer got tagged with the 'biere de garde' label. The flavor profile is so embarrassingly simple that describing it accurately is going be tough sledding.

Let's go with... untoasted brown bread, sugar syrup, tree bark, moldy oranges, cold tea and a shot of watered-down lower-shelf vodka. I've said it before in reference to several other breweries: how in the world do these guys stay in business? I have to believe that France has access to most of the good Belgian ales. If so, why a Frenchman (or a Frenchwoman) would buy a Brasserie Duyck product twice is a mystery.

The mouthfeel is crap city. It's both light and slick (yes, that is possible) and is so poorly bubbled that it beggars belief. Here's the rundown: too jumpy early, passes through the sweet spot in one mouthful, nearly flat from then on. Whooeee! We're havin' some fun now.

I'm not sure what else to say. The fact that I spent $7.99 on this '750' makes me want to cry. If you see Jenlain Noel on the shelves, run screaming in the other direction as fast as your legs will carry you. You're welcome. (2,389 characters)

Photo of emerge077
4.13/5  rDev +17%
look: 4.5 | smell: 4 | taste: 4 | feel: 4 | overall: 4.5

After trying the Jenlain Blonde and pouring out half of it, I was skeptical of this at first. Fortunately I had the chance to try it at a tasting, and it was memorable enough to pick up later.

Pours a pleasing deep amber tone, that glows when backlit. Ample foam, that settles to a ring and skim later on.

Smells like orange candy and subtle malt.

Taste is balanced and even, orange candy kind of floats in and isn't too sweet or cloying. Nice malty backbone, even mouthfeel. A butterscotch/diacetyl taste rides through in the aftertaste. A bitter/metal note is the only element out of place, otherwise it's a great seasonal quaffer. (645 characters)

Photo of womencantsail
3.58/5  rDev +1.4%
look: 4 | smell: 3.5 | taste: 3.5 | feel: 4 | overall: 3.5

The pour is amber in color with a tall off-white head. Sweet caramel and toffee with a little bit of sugar. Lots of dark fruits on the nose, too. There is a touch of spice and maybe some apples. The flavor is fairly sweet. Mostly sugar with some caramel. A decent amount of dark fruits, especially raisins and plums. Not bad at all. (332 characters)

Photo of ChainGangGuy
2.06/5  rDev -41.6%
look: 3 | smell: 2 | taste: 2 | feel: 2 | overall: 2

750ml bottle - $4.54 at Total Wine & More in Kennesaw, Georgia.

Appearance: Pours out a clear, darkened orange body with a bubbly, off-white head that's soon settled out.

Smell: Simple syrup and cheap bottom-shelf alcohol coating some fruits, including some dried citrus accents. Might be more to it, but I'm not sticking around longer to find out, as, instead of failing to even pull me in, it's a beer that pushes you away with its shortcomings.

Taste: Toasty malts, a bit of basic caramel, and some simple, unrefined sweetness. Then, a sip of coarse, well-level alcohol quickly scuttles the taste after the dreadful opening. Light cherries, but, with the booze, it yields a hint of cough syrup medicine. Growing dried bitter orange peel midway and into the sizzlingly crisp finish and beyond.

Mouthfeel: Medium-light body, with some sugary stickiness to it. Moderate level of crisp carbonation.

Overall: Each sip was a bit worse than the last. Frankly, I was quite glad to be done with it and, no, I didn't get through the entire bottle. Nothing resembling a quality Bière de Garde here at all. (1,103 characters)

Photo of mdfb79
2.69/5  rDev -23.8%
look: 4 | smell: 2.5 | taste: 2.5 | feel: 3.5 | overall: 2.5

From 01/02/11 notes. Had at a local DC tasting.

a - Pours a clearish amber mahogany color with one inch of white head and light carbonation evident.

s - Smells of wheat, bready malts, bicuit, and metal.

t - Tastes same as the nose, bready, biscuit, dough, and slight metal. Not great.

m - Light body and moderate carbonation.

d - A below average beer with a slight metal smell and taste. Wouldn't seek out again. (417 characters)

Photo of WesWes
3.33/5  rDev -5.7%
look: 4 | smell: 3.5 | taste: 3 | feel: 3.5 | overall: 3.5

The beer pours an amber color with a thick frothy offwhite head that slowly fades to lacing. The aroma is decent. It has a dry and slightly fruity scent as well as a mild crystal malt aroma. The taste is average. It has a thin and watery crystal malt flavor that does have some light nuttiness in the finish, but overall is dry and boring. It's a bit fruity with some light musty character. The mouthfeel is fine. It is a medium bodied beer with adequate carbonation. This is an above average beer, but nothing too great, especially for a once a year offering. (560 characters)

Photo of Gueuzedude
3.35/5  rDev -5.1%
look: 3.5 | smell: 3.5 | taste: 3.5 | feel: 3 | overall: 3

Bottle date of 09 2006, Sampled December 2007
I am not totally sure of the vintage perhaps 2005, but the label is black with an ornate red trim and has a blue & red neck label with oranges on it; it is newly distributed to my local bottle shop though. Pours with a brilliantly clear, dark, cranberry red color. The head starts out almost two-fingers thick and is a frothy, somewhat large bubbled consistency with a tan color. Definite aromas of citrus (as the neck label shows), almost more like orange juice spiked with alcohol as opposed to citrus zest which is usually used in beer. Underneath the orange is a toasty malt presence with a touch of caramel and a dry, biscuit like note.

Quite sweet tasting, almost in a cider like way. Very thin bodied for a beer of this strength. Citrus flavors play a prominent role, but it mixes in with the cider-like flavors to produce a sort of washed out juice flavor. The finish has a sharp, almost astringent bitterness to it as well as some toasted, malty notes. The astringent bitterness really lingers, it is linked to the citrus almost like a bitter orange peel flavor. In some ways it tastes like a soda.

Despite the flavors, this beer has held up really well if it is a 2005 bottling. Certainly not the greatest beer, and even fresh I have a feeling it was not all that great. It is somewhat refreshing, but a bit too simplistic and a bit to sharp in the finish. (1,414 characters)

Photo of Gavage
4/5  rDev +13.3%
look: 3.5 | smell: 3.5 | taste: 4 | feel: 4.5 | overall: 4.5

Appearance: pours a clear orange copper color with a thin head that quickly falls to surface foam. Some moderate lacing developed.

Smell: orange citrus and spices were most detectable, with some caramel candy sweetness in the background.

Taste: ripe fruits, oranges, caramel, winter-type spices, and a mild bitterness. Definitely leaning towards the fruity / citrus side of things.

Mouthfeel: crisp from start to finish. Very short aftertaste as the flavors leave the tongue quickly. Medium bodied brew.

Drinkability: I found this to be enjoyable and a bit different from the other xmas beers on the market. Worth giving it a try. (642 characters)

Photo of Billolick
3.77/5  rDev +6.8%
look: 4 | smell: 4.5 | taste: 3.5 | feel: 3.5 | overall: 3.5

Large bottle, caged and corked, label in languages besides English, says something about consuming before some date (I think) but I can see no dates.something about Jenlain never makes sense to me, maybe its the green bottles or the fact that the bottles allways seem to be slightly underfilled. Anyway, I digress, this one pours almond amber, cloudy, with a tan head, at first puffy, then fading to a 1/8 inch film and leaving plentiful stringy lacing. Aromatic nose of concentrated orange juice and cloves. More orange notes, soft mouthfeel, taste fades in the finish, worth a try, but nothing great, there are better and more interesting christmas brews and saisons out there (678 characters)

Photo of BlackHaddock
2.72/5  rDev -22.9%
look: 3 | smell: 3.5 | taste: 2.5 | feel: 2 | overall: 2.5

Obtained from a huge French Hypermarket in Calais in Dec 2010, this brown 25cl bottle was one of many in a multi-pack.

Best before 25 Nov 2011, this last bottle of the pack was opened and reviewed during one of my 'random beer tasting evenings' in April 2011.

Poured into a La Chouffe stemmed tulip shaped goblet: clear toffee apple red body, with an off-white head on top. A great pity that the head goes completely before you get a real chance to appreciate it.

I found hints of malts and cloves in the nose, so fairly Christmassy.

The taste was of sweet malts which faded quickly to a nasty metallic feel, this dried the mouth out and combind with the thin, weak body depth left me very disappointed.

Years ago I thought the Jenlain (Duyck) beers were the best in France, either I've changed my taste, or they've changed their beers! (841 characters)

Photo of Georgiabeer
3.77/5  rDev +6.8%
look: 3.5 | smell: 4 | taste: 4 | feel: 3 | overall: 3.5

Interesting beer. Not what I'd usually consider a Christmas beer, I'd actually prefer something like this in the summer, with its zingy citron and lemon notes married to a bit of brown sugar and bitter orange. Whenever, I'd enjoy this. It pours an orangey amber with a fairly short head that fades to a thin cap. The aroma is pure orange juice with a bit of spice at the end. The taste reminds me of an English lemon barley water. A bit soupy with grain, but in a light sort of way and with a nice citrus overlay that is quite refreshing. It starts out lemony, but as it opens up it tastes more of tangerine and orange with hint of spice. Quite nice. Perhaps a tad too light and seltzery in the mouthfeel, but ovarall this is a nice refresher- but not what I'd be looking for in a winter brew. (793 characters)

Photo of corby112
3.96/5  rDev +12.2%
look: 4.5 | smell: 3.5 | taste: 4 | feel: 4.5 | overall: 4

Draft at the Farmers' Cabinet in Philadelphia.

Pours a dark golden amber color with a two finger frothy white head that slowly settles into a lasting ring.  The glass is left coated with soapy lacing.

Slightly spicy aroma with a nice balance of dark fruit and biscuity malt.  Hints of pepper and cinnamon along with some cherry and dark berries followed by biscuity caramel malt.

Fuller bodied than expected with a nice balance of zesty spice, funky yeast, earthy hops, dark fruit and sweet malt.  A touch of bitterness up front followed by peppery spice that lingers over a slight medicinal character into a dry finish.  Hints of dark cherry with a nice malt backbone coutering the fruit/sweetness.  Hints of caramel malt and biscuit toward the finish.  Complex and much more flavorful than expected. (821 characters)

Photo of John_M
3.88/5  rDev +9.9%
look: 4 | smell: 3.5 | taste: 4 | feel: 4 | overall: 4

On tap at Max's today.

The beer pours a solid gold color with OK head retention and lots of sticky lacing. Don't get a whole lot on the nose, just some light clove, light cherry and a slight sweet ice tea aroma. Flavors replicate the nose for the most part, though this beer has an interesting pilsner component (pepper and light honey) that is attractive. Otherwise, the beer delivers a fair amount of moderatly sweet flavor without coming across as heavy or tiring on the palate. Mouthfeel is light to medium bodied, and drinkability is pretty good. Alcohohl is not at all noticeable, making this a pretty easy to take X-mas biere de garde.

Nice stuff. Would likely order this again. (688 characters)

Photo of Wasatch
4.3/5  rDev +21.8%
look: 4 | smell: 4 | taste: 4.5 | feel: 4 | overall: 4.5

750ml Bottle
Caged/Corked

Poured into my Corsendonk Christmas Ale glass a nice cloudy golden amber color, nice carbonation, nice little fizzy/creamy off-white head, there's some nice sticky/creamy lacing left behind. The nose is malty, yeasty, nice touch of floral. The taste is sweet, malty, with some yeast, very slight citrus. Medium body. Very drinkable, this brew goes down very easy, highly recommended. (410 characters)

Photo of tone77
3.74/5  rDev +5.9%
look: 4 | smell: 3.75 | taste: 3.75 | feel: 3.5 | overall: 3.75

Poured from a brown 11.2 oz. bottle. Has a ice tea color with a 1/2 inch head. Smell is of dark fruits, malts. Taste is malts, dark fruits, a touch of spice, some sweetness. As it warms, a bit of wine like grapes. Feels medium bodied in the mouth and overall a unique beer worth trying. (286 characters)

Photo of Gusler
4.17/5  rDev +18.1%
look: 4 | smell: 4.5 | taste: 4 | feel: 3.5 | overall: 4.5

The beer upon its pour from the 750ml green caged and corked bottle sets in my glass a luminous dark copper color with the head mastodonic in size, semi-creamy in texture and the color a nice light tan, after its destruction, a velum like sheet of lace surrounds the glass. Nose has a hint of chocolate and over ripe black cherries, also a touch of mushrooms, pleasant and appealing with the start sweet and the grain profile adequate with the top light to medium in feel. Finish has a disturbing acidity with the hops prickly in their spiciness, somewhat vinous, dry as a bleached desert bone, and a nice change of pace for me. (628 characters)

Photo of ccrida
4.08/5  rDev +15.6%
look: 4 | smell: 3.5 | taste: 4.5 | feel: 4 | overall: 4

12/25/08 - updated review of same beer from below (9/2006) after a couple years in the cellar. Big improvement!
Nice frothy head left decent lace. Smell was still heavy on the oranges, but with some caramel notes. Taste was the biggest improvement, the extreme orange juice flavors have subsided substantially, while there's still some orange, the caramel is really coming to the fore, with some spice, like a holiday fruit cake. Super tasty, it went great with ham. I got a bunch of these on clearance in early 2007 and am glad I still have a few more in the cellar. I tried one last winter and it hadn't really changed much after only a year, but two years in it's doing great, a very pleasant surprise indeed. Scores bumped up to reflect this current tasting.

----

Original tasting of 9/2006 stamped bottle on 2/17/2007:

Poured from a 750 ml bottle into an imperial pint glass, the Jenlain Noel was an orangish amber with a slight haze and 1 finger creamy, off-white head which quickly subsided to a skim, with no lace.
Aroma was bright but a touch musty, orange and sugary.
The taste was a rich, tart orange, with caramel and the slightest hint of butterscotch. It was crisp and refreshing, a little minerals, with a nice easy finish with no aftertaste. It was a little boozy - gran marnier comes to mind, from the orange of course, but the brandy aspect is accurate as well.
The Mouthfeel has the perfect amount of carbonation, very nice light, refreshing body.
The drinkability of this was not that high, the orange got to be a little much. I'm not sure if they used artificial flavor or some type of rich orange variety that I'm unfamiliar with, but it was a little syrupy tasting after a while (though not in body) Still, a good experience and nice change of pace for a Noel. I'll cellar one to see if time tempers the orange. (1,844 characters)

Photo of ZAP
3.3/5  rDev -6.5%
look: 4 | smell: 4 | taste: 3 | feel: 3 | overall: 3

A-Burnt orange color..light whisp of head

S-Musty and woody, yet somewhat fruity....also some black pepper...unique

T-Brewed in France but they must have hard water there...very minerally tasting....some light earthy dimensions...subtle toasted malts...

M-Medium bodied...higher carbonation with a little splash of alcohol....dry finish.

D-Haven't had many beers in this style and didn't know what to expect. I guess I thought it might be a little richer tasting. A nice new style of beer for me. Enjoyable. Similar a little to a saison which is not one of my favorite styles. Overall this is a solid beer and an enjoyable one to try but not one I would want again. (669 characters)

Photo of AgentMunky
3.47/5  rDev -1.7%
look: 4.5 | smell: 2.5 | taste: 4 | feel: 3 | overall: 3.5

Poured from a 750mL bottle into a cervoise glass. Stamped L1257 07:15. I am assuming this is the Christmas 2011 vintage, though I have no real reason to think so. The bottle uncorks easily with a satisfying pop.

A: Gorgeous! Two fingers of firm head with good retention. A clear, red-amber colour with lots of bubbles within. Scattered lacing.

S: Smells quite skunky (and yes, it's in a green bottle). Spicy, earthy, grassy hops are not unpleasant.

T: Tasty! A heavy malt base is full of fruit and caramelised sugar. Bright and lightly sweet, with a European hop character striving for balance.

M: It's acceptable, if not exceptional. Bready-fruity malts and slight carbonation. Average mouthfeel.

O: Overall, an enjoyable, drinkable, pleasant (if mediocre) beer. The sticker price is the kicker -- $3.99 for this bottle is a steal. Highly recommended if you can find it for a comparable price (I got mine at a Total Wine & More). I might buy another one next season. (973 characters)

Photo of TheLongBeachBum
3.85/5  rDev +9.1%
look: 3.5 | smell: 3.5 | taste: 4 | feel: 4 | overall: 4

Presentation: 750ml green glass bottle which has a very different label to that shown on BA – mine has a dark green background with a large Christmas Tree shiny red Bauble with a black band across it which has the word ‘Jenlain’ in white text set against it. Sealed with a small thumbed cork with the code H-5 on it, this is held is held in place with a silver colored cage and gold colored steel cap which has the word ‘Brasserie Duyck Depuis 1922’ on it. Neck and main label are similar in design. Labeled as, ‘Jenlain Noël’ and listed at 6.8% Alc.Vol. No discernable freshness date.

Appearance: Shining copper body with dark amber notes. Off-white head has speckles of brown eggshell and rises tall on the pour. Middling levels of conditioning try hard to support the head but it soon breaks down to a familiar looking thin covering, broken in places, with a thicker ring around the edges. Very light lacing but it does have a crusty texture. Solid appearance.

Nose: Crystal malt shines through. Earthy hops and spices add some organic hue to the aromas. Some plum and dark fruits. Simple profile but it has some depth which draws you in.

Taste: Lots of herbal malts, spiced hops and a deep fruity ‘toasty-roasty’ middle. Very dry, perhaps a bit too much, but the caked fruits and a delicate dark cherry background add some flesh and balance the dryness. Alsace and Hallertau hops blend well with the Plaisant, Carambi and Prisma malts. Soft spices and charismatic herbal highs are slashed by a clean cutting bitterness. Lots of Bière De Garde traits here but they are all amped up to add a Turbo-charged dimensions – bigger is not always better – but for once it does works.

Mouthfeel: Very dry with a kicking fruit angle to add some hydration but this one has a dry, almost powdery malt finish. It all seems to round out overall to lend a very healthy feel that supports throughout.

Drinkability: A pleasant partner for the night, it went down all too quickly whilst watching the day’s matches from the English Premiership League followed by the History of Metal on VH1. I could really go for another bottle of this one right now.

Overall: Brewed only once a year and pretty much the Jenlain Ambrée with a little supercharging on the malts and hops. Very nice though and great value at $6½….for once. (2,342 characters)

first ← prev | 1-25 | 26-50 | 51-75  | nextlast
Jenlain Bière De Noël from Brasserie Duyck
81 out of 100 based on 70 ratings.