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McChouffe - Brasserie d'Achouffe

Not Rated.

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

827 Ratings
very good

(view ratings)
Ratings: 827
Reviews: 489
rAvg: 3.97
pDev: 10.58%
Wants: 26
Gots: 36 | FT: 0
Brewed by:
Brasserie d'Achouffe visit their website

Style | ABV
Belgian Strong Dark Ale |  8.00% ABV

Availability: Year-round

Notes/Commercial Description:
ABV varies from time to time.

(Beer added by: Mitchster on 09-22-2001)
Beer: Ratings & Reviews
Sort by:  Latest | High | Low | Top Raters | Read the Alström Bros Beer Reviews and Beer Ratings of McChouffe Alström Bros
Ratings: 827 | Reviews: 489 | Display Reviews Only:
Photo of Jwale73

Rhode Island

3.53/5  rDev -11.1%
look: 4 | smell: 3.5 | taste: 3.5 | feel: 3.5 | overall: 3.5

11.2oz. bottle served in my DT snifter. Best before end of 2007 indicated on the bottle. Poured the color of cola with a 1.5 inch loose, fluffy, off-white head that sizzled and popped as it receded. Some strands of sticky, random lacing present during the tasting. Nose is somewhat vinous and yeasty with a hint of oak - nose might be a little off. Flavor profile is difficult to describe - muted candi sugar, a little herbal, a little vinous, earthy/woody/must. Mouthfeel falls somewhere between light- and medium-bodied with a consistent background carbonation present from sip to swallow with a light, lingering burn at the back of the throat. Finish is on the dry side. Fair drinkability. Not sure if it's past it's prime, but it was interesting to say the least. Might need to re-compare with a more contemparary vintage.

Serving type: bottle

10-25-2008 17:46:28 | More by Jwale73
Photo of bloberglawp

Quebec (Canada)

4.35/5  rDev +9.6%
look: 4.5 | smell: 4 | taste: 4.5 | feel: 4 | overall: 4.5

Served in a Lachouffe tulip glass, around 10 c.

Pours a dark brown with orange highlights huge head and a bit of lacing. Good carbonation. Aroma of peppery spice and bit of a hop presence. Flavor of rich malt a fairly large hop bite and a dry, almost saison like finish.

Great stuff!

Serving type: bottle

10-24-2008 00:23:46 | More by bloberglawp
Photo of clayrock81


3.9/5  rDev -1.8%
look: 4 | smell: 3.5 | taste: 4 | feel: 4 | overall: 4

Pours a dark auburn brown with some clarity and a two-finger head that dies quickly and leaves some lacing. Some malts in the smell and they contain a little sweetness; cocoa, caramel; only hints of dark fruit. First thing that hit me was a dryer, nuttier taste. Still, it is somewhat sweet and smooth over the tongue despite a little syrupy stickiness and it is almost full bodied (thanks to decent carbonation). There are figs and some roasted malts as well, plus a dark fruit sensation although it finishes dry. ABV hidden well - a good beer to relax with.

Serving type: on-tap

10-15-2008 17:10:14 | More by clayrock81
Photo of Pepeton


4.22/5  rDev +6.3%
look: 4 | smell: 4 | taste: 4.5 | feel: 4 | overall: 4

One of my favorite styles.

Beautiful mahogany dark, thick tan head. Some lacing, not much actually.

Smell is typical Belgian: Sweet roasted malts, hops in the background. No alcohol noticed.

Thick taste of ripe dark berries, some coriander, spiciness all over the sweet malts. Some bitterness right at the end.

Mouthfeel is creamy, silky.

Drinkability? Well I'll buy some more of these, but it certainly is not a session beer.


Serving type: bottle

10-14-2008 17:50:13 | More by Pepeton
Photo of brentk56

North Carolina

4.03/5  rDev +1.5%
look: 4.5 | smell: 4 | taste: 4 | feel: 4 | overall: 4

Appearance: Pours an opaque coffee brown with a creamy, full head thats caps and coats; lacing drapes down the sides of the chalice

Smell: Brown bread, caramel, and yeasty, with chocolate powder

Taste: Opens with a mouthful of spice cake and chocolate powder topped with caramel; dark fruits, apples and spicy yeast add complexity as the flavor builds to mid-palate; after the swallow, the spicy caramel apple flavors persist, along with the chocolate elements

Mouthfeel: Full bodied and creamy, with moderate carbonation

Drinkability: Rather enjoyable, but definitely on the sweet side

Serving type: bottle

10-04-2008 01:29:24 | More by brentk56
Photo of russpowell


4/5  rDev +0.8%
look: 3 | smell: 4 | taste: 4 | feel: 4.5 | overall: 4

Poured into my La Chouffe tulip ( New Years 2002). Pours chestnut, orange when held into the light with 2 fingers of tan head. Average head retention & lacing

S: Apples & brown bread & a touch of cinnamon

T: Caramel, appleskins, leafy hops, a bit of apple schnapps & figs up front. Some dark candi sugar & a bit of raisin, plus orange slices as this warms. Finishes with dark fruit, leafy hops, & a touch of dryness

MF: Fairly assertive carbonation up front plus medium body & a bit of stickyness

Drinks pretty easy for the ABV, although the booze does peak through a bit. This was better on draft across from the brewery! Not bad, but there are better Belgian darks out there

Serving type: bottle

10-02-2008 03:30:42 | More by russpowell
Photo of thekevlarkid


3.78/5  rDev -4.8%
look: 5 | smell: 4 | taste: 3.5 | feel: 3.5 | overall: 4

I'd been eyeing this one at the store and then it appeared on tap at American Flatbread so... off the tap the beer came to me a deep garnet color leaning towards brown. The tan head was about a finger thick and retained very well. Gorgeous curtains of lacing. The aroma was truly a bouquet like a florists shop with lots of sweet malt, citrus and aromatic hops. The flavors were also good, citrus candy, tropical fruit, berries and some hops though the malt profile is a little subdued. Alcohol heat appeared as it warmed up but otherwise it was well concealed. The carbonation was just a little prickly but generally it was clean and easy to drink. Yum!

Serving type: on-tap

09-30-2008 13:37:12 | More by thekevlarkid
Photo of Brad007


3.63/5  rDev -8.6%
look: 4 | smell: 3.5 | taste: 3.5 | feel: 3.5 | overall: 4

Pours into my hopfenstark glass, a darkish-red color with a thick head of foam that seems to stick around longer than usual.

Aroma is smooth and malty with hints of apple and raisin that stand out in the nose.

Taste is a bit strong upfront with some alcohol heat. Subtle taste of raisin and apple at the back of the throat. Kind of subdued though. Feels like it's missing something.

Mouthfeel: Raisin and apple with alcohol warmness, dominate the mouthfeel. I can't pick out much more.

Drinkability is there but I'm just not enjoying this as much as I want to. With some aging, I bet the flavors will come out more.

Serving type: bottle

09-13-2008 01:19:54 | More by Brad007
Photo of meatmallet


3.65/5  rDev -8.1%
look: 4 | smell: 3.5 | taste: 4 | feel: 3.5 | overall: 3

Appearance: Brown with a head that quickly fades.

Smell: Yeast, dark fruits, some caramelized malt and a little hops. Not overly powerful.

Taste: A little sour at first with the dark fruit flavor. A little sweet.

Mouthfeel: There is light carbonation present with each sip. Very smooth in the mouth.

Drinkability: Not bad but not my favorite of the style.

Serving type: bottle

09-10-2008 03:46:00 | More by meatmallet
Photo of mltobin


3.9/5  rDev -1.8%
look: 4 | smell: 4 | taste: 4 | feel: 4 | overall: 3.5

The appearance of McChouffe is a very dark brown, almost black with a thick dark head.
The smell is that of a rich and sweet ale,
The taste is very rich, with chocolate and a small amount of carmel present.
The mouthfeel is full bodied and a bit spicy.
Drinkability is pretty good. As mentioned in taste, all around this beer is very rich. So it will go well with a shepard`s pie or other hearty meals.

Serving type: bottle

09-06-2008 23:56:30 | More by mltobin
Photo of becktone


3.28/5  rDev -17.4%
look: 3.5 | smell: 4 | taste: 3 | feel: 3.5 | overall: 3

From notes 8-29-08

Eye: In a La Chouffe Tulip: Cloudy reddish brown in color, nice creamy looking head, though retention could be better, starts out nice then fades to little more than a sickly looking blanket over the top of the beer. Lacing is nice looking-thin sheets along the sides of the glass.

Nose: Sweet candy type of aroma. Dark fruit and some chocolate aroma, small noble hop aroma, not really all that prevalent though, just barely there. Nothing all that special, smells good as expected.

Tongue: Spicy flavor and slightly alcoholic. Not as much dark fruit as was in the aroma. Dark malt flavors aren't as strong as I would've expected...slightly smokey and some chocolate, but both seem to be pretty low in flavor. Not as complex as I would've expected. Keep looking for more but its really not there.

Mouthfeel and Drinkability: Medium in body, seems a bit lighter than a Belgian Strong Dark should be, but that's just my opinion. Low and delicate carbonation, so low that when drinking this beer its not noticed until its thought about, until one is looking for it...I like that, subtle. Pretty much average all around. This is one I"d not be opposed to drinking again, but there are many others that are much better. Easy to drink, but again, pretty much average.

Serving type: bottle

08-31-2008 01:02:51 | More by becktone
Photo of hunteraw


3.9/5  rDev -1.8%
look: 4 | smell: 4 | taste: 4 | feel: 4 | overall: 3.5

Enjoyed at The Elm Tree pub in Cambridge. I really like this brewery, so I was eager to give this one a try...

Appearance: Very deep garnet in color, with an enormous head. Surprisingly little lacing.

Smell: Rich and malty, with a hint of smoke and dark fruit. Belgian yeast filters through.

Taste: Scotch ale, with a Belgian twist? Caramel, raisin and fig. No smoke on the palate. Bitterness is well-balanced.

Mouthfeel: Medium body, good carbonation.

Drinkability: A little heavy after a while, but nice.

Serving type: bottle

08-28-2008 17:23:02 | More by hunteraw
Photo of friendofthedevil


4.6/5  rDev +15.9%
look: 4.5 | smell: 4.5 | taste: 4.5 | feel: 4.5 | overall: 5

Mmmm, mmmm, good. Nice brown color with hints of a deep red when held to the light. Smells a little malty but the taste! Ah! The taste! The taste! Excellent, to be exact. Slightly sweet at the start and then finishes with a nice hoppy note. And really, is it possible to go wrong with a beer championing gnomes on the bottle? Certainly not!

Serving type: bottle

08-27-2008 16:10:42 | More by friendofthedevil
Photo of Antilochus

Ontario (Canada)

3.98/5  rDev +0.3%
look: 3.5 | smell: 4 | taste: 4 | feel: 4 | overall: 4


Shared a 750mL bottle with a friendly Antwerp(en?) at Kulminator. Served in a McChouffe branded glass. Dark brown, moderately translucent look, head is tan and doesn't stick around. Malty aromas, bit of spice, caramel, etc. Sooo easy to drink, very dangerous, we slid back quite a bit at the bar.. well balanced and carbonated to ease it down. Classic Belgo.

Serving type: bottle

08-19-2008 23:13:52 | More by Antilochus
Photo of lpayette


3.5/5  rDev -11.8%
look: 3.5 | smell: 3.5 | taste: 3.5 | feel: 3.5 | overall: 3.5

OK, here's yet another beer that I've been cellaring for quite some time and in an effort to consolidate my collection, this beer's time is up.

Apppearance- dark brown with deep ruby hues. A bit too dark to show off the nice clarity within, but you can see through it still when held up to the light. Head is on the small side but there's still some lacing.

Smell- typical brown ale smells with malt dominating. Very little hop presence combined with earthy, and spicey yeast characteristics put the belgian twist on this one.

Taste- not nearly as flavor packed as I expected. It's surprisingly mellow, subdued, and I might even go so far as to say dull. It may have something to do with being cold aged for about a year and half in my beer fridge; I'm not sure, but this just wasn't as flavorful as I expected.

Not a bad choice, but not something I'll seek out again. The other offerings I've had from chouffe have been much stronger IMO.

Serving type: bottle

08-18-2008 03:27:00 | More by lpayette
Photo of Absumaster


3.78/5  rDev -4.8%
look: 4 | smell: 3.5 | taste: 3.5 | feel: 4 | overall: 4.5

A brown, red beer with a big head that settles after a couple of minutes in the original Chouffe chalice.

Smell is light caramel, a little molasses and some musty notes. I miss out the caramel malts, this tastes like a colored blond beer. The smell makes a pilsner-like impression.

Taste is light, notes of molasses and caramel coloring, which a little astringent. There is a slight warming feeling to the beer, despite it's insane drinkability. The yeast adds a great profile and is herbal and peppery. The absence of caramalt, as confirmed by the brewery itself, creates a beer that lacks the extra bit of depth that a BSDA needs.

Serving type: bottle

08-15-2008 08:29:27 | More by Absumaster
Photo of JRed

New Jersey

3.9/5  rDev -1.8%
look: 4 | smell: 3.5 | taste: 4 | feel: 4 | overall: 4

The good ole Chouffe gnomes have done it again; brewed a delicious drink of a beer that is. Earthy colors with thick head that stays around for a while, what a good brown ale should look like. Not too overpowering of a smell but rather a soothing cocoa bean aroma. Mmmm, smooth, malty, coffee roast with a touch of chocolate spice for an aftertaste and I am transported to Belgium hanging out with midgets. No alcoholic bite to be found despite the 8.0% ABV, it is masked behind the deep flavors that coat the tongue. A tasty Belgian mudslide that's enjoyable any time of year.

Serving type: bottle

08-14-2008 00:20:15 | More by JRed
Photo of Nipitato


4.33/5  rDev +9.1%
look: 5 | smell: 4 | taste: 4.5 | feel: 4.5 | overall: 4

Purchased a bottle at Julio's Liquors located in Westborough, MA.

A: Extremely dark amber hue that is opaque. Dark tan head with quarter inch retention. An excellent looking beer.

S: A wonderful aroma. Prominently bready malt with a touch of caramel and crust. Dried cherries and raisin esters. No real hop aroma.

T: Sweet malt. Bready. Alcohol flavors are prominent. Some bread crust. Just a touch of pepper. Taste is sweet throughout with no hop flavor. Alcohol flavor replaces hops as a balancing agent. Just a touch of bitterness at the end. Dark fruit ester add additional complexity.

MF: Highly carbonated with a creamy mouthfeel. Quite mouthfilling. Clear alcohol warmth noticeable.

D, notes: This is a top shelf beer. It's heavy so its sessionability is limited but this is a great sipping beer.

Serving type: bottle

08-12-2008 15:18:01 | More by Nipitato
Photo of philipquarles


3.15/5  rDev -20.7%
look: 4 | smell: 3 | taste: 3 | feel: 4 | overall: 3

Poured from a 75cL bottle into a tulip. It's very dark brown (nearly black) that has red hues when held to a light. A medium off-white head that disappears rather quickly, but leaves a reasonable amount of lacing.

Smells of sweet, caramelized sugar and malt.

Tastes very much as it smells. More muted caramel sugars with a slightly bready taste that becomes more apparent the longer one waits.

Mouthfeel is good; standard Belgian bruin thickness.

A bit too sweet for my palate, but definitely not offensive. A decent brew.

Serving type: bottle

07-14-2008 19:30:59 | More by philipquarles
Photo of beerthulhu

New Jersey

4.1/5  rDev +3.3%
look: 4 | smell: 4 | taste: 4 | feel: 4 | overall: 4.5

A: Pours a dark mahogany color, with a thin tan creamy head.

S: bready with some malt sweetness and a chocolate nuttiness with some dried cherries.

T: soft roasted malt nuttiness, with some fresh cherries, and chocolate. There was a nice malt sweetness, soft alcohol notes and ripe fruit coming through in the finish. The overall flavor was very refined and smooth.

M: light and creamy smooth in texture with a good carbonation.

D: An incredibly smooth and silky Belgian brown that went down effortlessly. Very good drinkability.

Serving type: bottle

07-05-2008 13:22:27 | More by beerthulhu
Photo of pinotboy007


4/5  rDev +0.8%
look: 4 | smell: 3.5 | taste: 4 | feel: 4 | overall: 4.5

Purchased at Washington Street Purveyor, Lexington, VA.

A - Looks like root beer with a very nice, rocky head that settles to a ring; only a tiny bit of lacing; yeast floaties abound.

S - Spicy yeast with some cinnamon, pepper, smoked malt.

T = Sweet (not overly) and delicious. Has a nice cola, peat, syrup and modest hops.

M - Lightly creamy w/perfect carbonation that helps hold the beautiful "chorus of taste" together.

D - In spades, perhaps too drinkable! I can see this being swirled down year 'round with no problem. Cheers!

Serving type: bottle

06-29-2008 21:19:33 | More by pinotboy007
Photo of Cyberkedi


4.08/5  rDev +2.8%
look: 4.5 | smell: 4 | taste: 4 | feel: 4.5 | overall: 4

This one pours a rich, almost opaque chocolaty brown. Aroma is strong and malty and just a touch sweet. Flavor is rich, remarkably sweet but not cloying, strongly malty with hints of fruit and butterscotch and a nutty trace. There is just a tiny hit of hop bitterness. Very smooth and pleasant to sip.

Serving type: on-tap

06-14-2008 01:34:21 | More by Cyberkedi
Photo of Patrick999


4.53/5  rDev +14.1%
look: 4 | smell: 4.5 | taste: 4.5 | feel: 5 | overall: 4.5

The last of the commonly available Chouffe offerings I've yet to try.

A - Poured into a goblet. Trademark Chouffe head, dark brown body. Head settles to a small cap, some concentric rings.

S - Roasted malts, some raisin. Maple also seems to want to come to mind. Notes of chocolate, prune, date. Doesn't smell like much cold but really opens up with a few degrees' warming.

T - Hah! Right away, there's that spicy Chouffe yeast. They use such a lively, distinct yeast - lots of clove, nutmeg, menthol. Reminds me of the N'ice Chouffe, though perhaps a bit tighter, which is saying somethihg. A little sweet maple syrup, but the spicy yeast character helps dry that out in the finish. Use of Goldings hops also noted - quite a different earthy hop character for a Belgian Dark.

F - Sits well on the palate with a deft touch for a full-bodied beer. Chouffe always nails the feel aspect.

D - Not your standard Belgian Dark, nevertheless, this drinks beautifully. Kick back, relax and enjoy the contents of the 750ml bottle. This cross between BSDA and Scottish Ale is not as daring an idea as the Houblon Chouffe, but the deft touch of a master artisan brewer is still quite evident here. You can't go wrong with Brasserie d'Achouffe.

Serving type: bottle

06-13-2008 20:08:42 | More by Patrick999
Photo of Traquairlover


4.2/5  rDev +5.8%
look: 4.5 | smell: 4 | taste: 4.5 | feel: 3.5 | overall: 4

750ml bottle poured into tulips.

A = Dark clear oak brown with large light tan head made of foam, medium lacing.

S = Light spicy yeast smells including cinnamon, clove, black pepper, also thick smells of smokey malts, very good smells but not quite as pronounced as I would prefer.

T = Sweet light smokey-peaty malt, maple syrup but with a good bitter kick at mid-palate, less of the spicy tastes from the yeast than I expected from the smell. A very good dark strong beer.

M = Medium to medium-heavy body, burns tongue slightly, fair mouthcoating, creamy carbonation level.

D = A good drinkable beer for a relaxing evening.

Serving type: bottle

05-31-2008 01:09:31 | More by Traquairlover
Photo of Slynger


4.15/5  rDev +4.5%
look: 4 | smell: 4.5 | taste: 4 | feel: 4.5 | overall: 4

McChouffe pours a deep, cloudy, brown color with a pink grapefruit tint to it. A big, aggressive, fuzzingly creamy, light tan lid comes with.

The smell is a delight. A touch of sweet caramel with plums, berries, and sweet grapefruit. Yeasty as well, with a touch of spice.

Creamy medium-full with loads of tickling and massaging carbonation. The taste has a light sweetness of caramel and plums with bittersweet toffee. More fruits show up pleasantly sour in the form of red apples. Lots of Belgian yeast with a bit of tingly-sharp spiciness.

McChouffe is a very nice beer. BSDA or Belgian Brown as the bottle claims, I don't really know? I do know that it has a great nose, a nice tasty balance, and a classic mouthfeel. Well done.

Serving type: bottle

05-23-2008 02:34:04 | More by Slynger
McChouffe from Brasserie d'Achouffe
89 out of 100 based on 827 ratings.