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McChouffe - Brasserie d'Achouffe

Not Rated.

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very good

940 Ratings
very good

(view ratings)
Ratings: 940
Reviews: 504
rAvg: 3.97
pDev: 10.33%
Wants: 33
Gots: 79 | 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:
Beer added by: Mitchster on 09-22-2001

ABV varies from time to time.
Beer: Ratings & Reviews
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Ratings: 940 | Reviews: 504 | Display Reviews Only:
Photo of lacqueredmouse
3.81/5  rDev -4%
look: 4.5 | smell: 3.5 | taste: 4 | feel: 4 | overall: 3.5

Cloudy dark reddish brown with a huge rocky head of beige foam, that leaves some grilled sugar lacing on the sides. Very dense and thick and opaque. Looks incredibly good, but maybe not so suitable for 11am. Lovely colour.

Lots of carbonation and a light oxidation on the nose. Fair whack of sweet organic Belgian yeast as well. Hint of peppery spice, but to be honest not a lot. Some dark bread or grain character. Not bad. It's not a hugely complex nose, but it's quite pleasant.

Smooth with some spicy phenols on the palate. Start is light and a little spiky, this mellows so a smooth, dry grain character and a lingering waft of alcohol heat. Some alcohol soaked raisins perhaps mid palate. Nice. Plenty of things going on there. They don't merge into a blissful state, but there's lots of interest.

It does have a little too much of the alcohol character to be more than a sipping beer, and I think having this served to me at 11 was a really bad idea, but it's reasonably smooth, and the body is pleasantly light. Overall, a nice Belgian. I don't think it's quite as good as the better examples, but it's still very pleasant.

Photo of laituegonflable
3.31/5  rDev -16.6%
look: 4 | smell: 3 | taste: 3 | feel: 3.5 | overall: 4

Pours a hazy brown-apricot colour with really pleasant beige head, retains superbly but isn't all that thick. The sticky sheet of lace on my mistress' bed...whoops, I mean, on the glass, more than makes up for that, and very strong carbonation. Great-looking brew.

Nose is tart and resiny with a very distinct ethanol character. Fair amount of grape skins, with a hint of peach and maybe a slight banana character as well. Slightly simple, but pleasant enough.

Taste is also quite tart, with a pleasant fruity malt character on the mid, slightly tart grape characters and a hint of vinegar. Very phenolic with a distinct alcohol hit. Throughout the palate there is a lot of sweet characters though, boiled lollies and carob on the front. To be honest it doesn't sit perfectly right with the vinegar character on the back, and the overall palate feels a bit short, with not much of a finish. Pleasant enough but just lacking a bit.

Mouthfeel is very sticky and thick with a large body, not much texture but nice sticky Belgian quality.

As much as I'm not a huge fan of the flavour here, it's very drinkable and pleasant, goes down smoothly, because its tart and phenolic characters aren't quite sharp enough to make me recoil. Could disguise its alcohol better but otherwise pretty fine.

Photo of JimsArcade
3.28/5  rDev -17.4%
look: 4 | smell: 3.5 | taste: 3.5 | feel: 3 | overall: 2.5

Poured into a 10 oz. tulip glass.

Medium to dark brown, it generated a light brown head that slowly dissipated leaving classic Belgian lacing along the inside of the glass.

Matly and yeasty in the nose, with a good amount of spice thrown into the mix. Estery aromas show up as well.

What an... intriguing beer. During the initial sips at its coldest temperature, there is multitude of flavors fighting for dominance. The malts, the spices, the yeast, and those esters detected in the aroma are there in big quantities, yet none seem to blend. The alcohol also seems a lot higher than 8%. As the beer warms, everything starts to mellow out into a great harmony of flavors. I thought it was the alcohol muting the tongue (as I would expect a warmer beer to have even more pronounced flavors), but a second glass shortly thereafter revealed the same pattern. To score this beer, I'd have to average a moderately low score for the initial sips and a high score later sips. What a weird beer!

The same things pointed out above for taste apply to its mouthfeel. It's like drinking two different beers in the same glass at the same time.

The changes from harsh to mild in each sampling does not help it drinkability, however. I had two glasses for this sampling, but could not bring myself to have a third. Definitely a one-and-done beer for any particular evening.

Photo of BigJim5021
4/5  rDev +0.8%
look: 4 | smell: 4 | taste: 4 | feel: 4 | overall: 4

Pours cola brown with a beige head that leaves plenty of lacing. It looks like a big-ass Coke.

The smell is sweet and malty with hints of the usual clove-like spice of a Belgian.

The flavor is of dark fruits, cloves and a nice rounded caramel maltiness.

Mouthfeel is medium and with good carbonation. It's not champagne-like fizz, but it's just about right where you want a dark ale to be.

As with other d'Achouffe beers, this stuff is of high quality. I think it's probably my least favorite of their main beers, but being that this stuff is really tasty, that mostly speaks to the strengths of La and Houblon.

Photo of froghop
3.38/5  rDev -14.9%
look: 3.5 | smell: 3 | taste: 3.5 | feel: 3.5 | overall: 3.5

pours a semi-clear brown with a small beige head, lively carbonation, and great lacing.

smell of some spice, and some malt.

taste is light, spice, malt, and brown sugar, end is a little spicy and dry.

overall a nice smooth beer with a hint of spice.

Photo of DoubleJ
3.94/5  rDev -0.8%
look: 3 | smell: 4 | taste: 4 | feel: 4 | overall: 4

If a Scot and a Belgian got married, is this what their offspring would look like? 750 ml bottle, on to the beer:

Melted chocolate brown in color with hues of orange. The head on top is big and bubbly...but also a bit fizzy with little retention. The nose is soft, sweet, earthy, and spicy.

Plenty of springy carbonation, and is sure packs a wallop of Scottish influence. Very malty and sweet like a wee heavy. It's a mix of plums, chocolate, figs, tobaccoo, with a somehwat spicy hop note towards the end of the sip. Chocolatey leftvers in the aftertaste.

An enjoyable "Belgian Wee Heavy". Nothing more to say.

Photo of ChainGangGuy
3.85/5  rDev -3%
look: 3.5 | smell: 3.5 | taste: 4 | feel: 4 | overall: 4

11 ounce goblet - $9.75 at Taco Mac in Buford, Georgia.

Appearance: Pours an opaque, dark brown body with a thin wisp of white froth on top.

Smell: Aroma replete with plenty of fruitiness and lightly wafting alcohol and notes of spice, dark bread, dark candi sugar, and maybe even some syrup as well.

Taste: Dark brown breadiness sweetened with dark candi sugar and a firm caramel flavor. Fruity additions of black cherry cola, figs, and red currants. Earthy, herbal hops with a medium-low bitterness. Dash of cinnamon and nutmeg. Light warming touches of alcohol. Renewed tastes of sweet breadiness, now with a touch of maple prior to the warming, semi-dry finish.

Mouthfeel: Medium-plus body. Medium carbonation.

Drinkability: A reasonably pleasant, enjoyable ale, and, though the alcohol isn't entirely hidden, it isn't ever glaring, making for a relatively easy-drinking brew. Paired well with the rockin' mid-90's tunes playing at Taco Mac.

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

poured into a pilsner glass ( it was all i had) beautiful head, great rention.
smelled malty, like figs covered in bread, with and eathiness in the background
tasted like a belgian dark ale, mixed with a little bit of scotish ale( which is pretty much what it is) the esters of the belgian yeast dominate, but you still get the malty goodness of the scotch ale. Great beer, loved it.

Photo of FleeVT
4.05/5  rDev +2%
look: 4 | smell: 4 | taste: 4 | feel: 4.5 | overall: 4

Tall green 750ml bottle poured into a goblet.

A: Pours a deep mahogany with cream head that starts out at 2 fingers and quickly retreats to 1/2 finger. Lacing clings to glass side. Very tiny bubbles of streaming carbonation.

S: Predominately malty with a mix of both sweet and yeast. A little bit of biscuit. With some swirling you can pick up some dark fruits.

T/M: Initial taste, a dry brew with a nice quick kick in the ass-end. Medium body with a creamy smoothness that disguises the alcohol bite in the back. Semi-sweet malts present as a mix of raisin and some other esters. There is almost a candy like medicinal quality in the back of your throat, but not an aftertaste.

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

Chilled 750ml bottle poured into a Duvel tulip glass. Looks as though carbonation is fairly low and the head that is created from pouring shifts down to a surface ayer with nearly no lacing.

As one would expect the color is a dark coffee brown and reasonably opaque.

Nose detects ripe dark fruits with malts and yeast plus an indescribable note that is perhaps best described as brown sugar.

In the mouth and across the tongue produces very tasty malt characteristics. Dark fruits are also delivered and so to is the brown sugar.

The lower degree of carbonation is a treat as it caramelises in the mouth and sustains that malt flavor. Finishes try with a comfortable amount of alcohol twang.

Good stuff

Photo of dbmcrorie
4.25/5  rDev +7.1%
look: 4 | smell: 4 | taste: 4.5 | feel: 4.5 | overall: 4

75 cl dark green champagne bottle poured into a stemmed tulip glass and schooner. (This was done since it is a Scottish/Abbey Ale mix. Scottish ales are better in tulip glasses, and abbey ales are better in goblets/schooners. Result: The only differences were that the aromas/flavors were more concentrated and the head retained better in the tulip glass.)

Pours a dense rich off-white head with a deep brown body; purple/ruby hues are present in the slight cloudiness. The head sticks around pretty much until the end of the glass. A ridiculous amount of lace coats the edge of the glass.

Earthy, rich spices and sweet malts take over the nose. Phenols and esters are present with sweet, yet sour, notes of fruit, dates, and candy. Faint hints of yeasty bread and citrus follow up.

Rich and sweet with strong notes of bubblegum, raisin/dates, and dark fruits. Slight earthy and tartness of orange peel and licorice contrast spicy yeast/bread-like flavors. Fruity esters remain in the nose which allow the palate to fully appreciate the deep range of fruits and faint hops. Soft carbonation rolls along the tongue that brings the candy-like fruits to life that balance with the alcohol.

Very impressive. The thick mouthfeel and rich body go down greatly with the smooth carbonation. The flavor is rich and sweet, but not overpowering. Though these styles are better sipped alone, this scottish/abbey hybrid pairs well with a wide range of foods including spicy/flavorful pizza, barbecue, rich meats, and various cheeses.

Photo of atpben
3.41/5  rDev -14.1%
look: 4 | smell: 3 | taste: 3.5 | feel: 3.5 | overall: 3.5

Poured out of a bottle into a Duvel glass. Pours a nice brown color with hints of red in it. Foam subsides to a minimal in a few minutes. Aroma of raisins, light brown sugar, and some caramel. Taste has more of brown sugar raisins, and light orange(?) Smooth malty finish with the belgian yeast flavor. I liked it. A Belgian version of a scotch ale. I loved it - the best of both worlds. I liked it better than most scotch ales(which is not one of my favorite styles). Will definately try again. I do want to try this on tap.

Photo of JohnQVegas
4.43/5  rDev +11.6%
look: 4.5 | smell: 4 | taste: 4.5 | feel: 5 | overall: 4.5

12oz bottle into chalice.

Pours opaque, cloudy dark brown bordering on plum, with a gigantic, pillowy tan head that eventually settles down to a creamy cap of foam.

Nose is brown sugar and ripe dark fruit, some spicy yeast, bit of alcohol.

Taste is brown sugar, fresh baked dark bread, and spicy yeast, hints of cocoa and licorice, and dark fruit coming out a bit in the finish. Finish is fairly clean, bready, some yeast, bit of alcohol as well.

Mouthfeel is decadently creamy, full but still a bit light, carbonation is superbly subtle - soft and creamy with just a bit of bite at the front of the mouth. Delicious, superbly crafted beer.

Photo of Nick3
4.15/5  rDev +4.5%
look: 4 | smell: 4 | taste: 4 | feel: 4.5 | overall: 4.5

Beer poured into a Duvel tulip glass. Mahogany brown in color with a reddish tint and a nice head that vanishes quickly. Beautiful lacing on the glass as I drink it. Dark fruit and spices in the nose. Beer is very smooth and drinkable. Carbonation and flavors dance all over your tongue. Flavors of malt and spices dominate the beer with some flowery hops in the finish. Very well balanced beer that got better with every sip. Bravo!

Photo of jujubeast6000
3.2/5  rDev -19.4%
look: 3 | smell: 3 | taste: 3.5 | feel: 3 | overall: 3

Reviewed 11/27/2007 (bottle):

Pours a very dark colored body, with a big tan colored head, very quickly diminishing. Has a dusty, musky aroma, with some dark fruit. Alcoholy taste. Has a dark fruit taste, with some musk, and some alcohol. Strongish alcoholy taste. Kinda flat.

Photo of Monkeyknife
4/5  rDev +0.8%
look: 4 | smell: 4 | taste: 4 | feel: 4 | overall: 4

Poured from the bottle a cloudy mahogany color with red highlights and a thin cap of beige head resting on top.

Aroma of sweet malts, raisins, Belgian yeast, and tobacco leaf.

Tastes of sweet malts, plums, raisins, yeast, and Belgian candied sugar and tobacco leaf in the finish. The 8% alcohol is well hidden.

Medium bodied, sticky, and moderately carbonated.

Definitely an enjoyable Belgian strong dark ale and a must try.

Photo of SurlyDuff
4.24/5  rDev +6.8%
look: 3.5 | smell: 4.5 | taste: 4.5 | feel: 3.5 | overall: 4

Pours an iced tea brown, with some good murky opacity. Carbonation seems weak, fleeting at first, as if it'll go away fast. But once it drops down to a lacing, it actually hangs in there for the whole glass. Drank from my westy goblet.

Aroma begins with a wisp of fusal alchohol, then a lingering sweetness.

Fruity sweetness at the first sip, but after a good exhale the complexity shines through. Some nutty smoke, hazelnut perhaps, then some woody earthy molassas. Nice spice at the finish, and the alcohol makes another showing. It's a great drinker, smooth and just the right amount of belgian yeast flavors. It's a tad on the sweet cloying side, but i think that just makes it a slower drinker, i dont mind it at all.

Photo of flipper2gv
3.92/5  rDev -1.3%
look: 3.5 | smell: 4 | taste: 4 | feel: 3.5 | overall: 4

A: Dark mahogany color. Hazy. Head looks creamy and lively. Quickly dissipates to a ring.

S: Not too strong. But from what I can smell: dark fruits sweetness, some wheat characteristics, apple peel, earth, malt sweetness.

T: Much different than the smell. Earth is much more pronounced. Caramel and toffee are spawning out of the malt sweetness. Apple peel is still present. Some pepper coming from the yeast. Nice hop bitterness. Finally, dark fruits are there but very hard to feel.

M: Crisp beer, like most belgians of the style. A tad watery. Carbonation is high, a bit too high for my taste. Alcohol warmth is present.

D: High. Well balanced tasting beer makes it easy to drink. Since the body is a bit small, it helps too. Alcohol is well hidden too.

Photo of EnojysAnyBeer
4.58/5  rDev +15.4%
look: 5 | smell: 4.5 | taste: 5 | feel: 4 | overall: 4

Funny looking Belgian 750ml dark green champagne bottle

A- Huge head with a stunning pattern of bubbles and lacing in my tulip glass. Hazy, translucent, dark-brown-chocolate/purple-grape-colored body. I can't see through this beer

S- This beer is exactly what was promised. Funky Belgian yeast smells and extra-pale pilsner malt smells with a slight scent of oxidation.

T- Sweet, chocolate/raisin/caramel body tastes like a Chunky candy bar but more alcoholic. Good flavors from the smell cover the nasty oxidation flavor. Becomes more nutty as it warms making it taste even more like a Chunky candy bar. The more time I spend with this beer, the more I love it. The fresh, Noble hops deceive the tongue when cold, but once the beer warms up a bit, it's true, sweet, nutty, complex character becomes apparent. This beer deserves a 5. When drinking with the yeast sediment I noticed a tangy, almost sour, fruity flavor.

M- Great medium, chewy body with a bit too much harsh carbonation

D- Quite drinkable but would be much better with improved carbonation

Photo of bonkers
3.8/5  rDev -4.3%
look: 4 | smell: 4 | taste: 3.5 | feel: 4 | overall: 4

I had this on tap at High Street Grill. It was presented in a La Chouffe goblet, dark brown in appearance with a slight white head. The aroma was a bit sweet due to the malt, supposedly a Scotch ale hybrid I did not detect any peat aroma. It is some what sweet on the palate, coriander is also noticed. The beer is medium bodied and a bit of a sipper. Of the 4 beers I have had of this brewery this is my least favorite.

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

Pours dark brown color with nice off-white head. Smell - malty fruitiness with some yeasty notes. Taste - plums-like fruitiness, maltiness. Very high carbonation, champaigne-like notes. Alcohol is very well hidden, medium bodied, very drinkable. Great session beer. Recommended

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

a - golden blond with a nice white head, served in a magic chouffe glass, looked likre a true belgian.

s - nice light citrus and clean sour green apple hints in the backround.

t - i like the easy taste and nice finish, with a little carbonation to round out the feel out of a quality belgian.

m - light, refreshing, slight carbonation, but i enjoy the feel.

d - can finish the bottle very easy, because the drinkability is so pleasant

Photo of spointon
3.7/5  rDev -6.8%
look: 4 | smell: 4 | taste: 3.5 | feel: 4 | overall: 3.5

I poured this one from a 750ml green bottle into a stemmed New Belgium globe glass.

A= This ale poured a cloudy garnet/brown color with a 1.5" frothy off-white head. The head slowly dropped and after a long time disappeared completely. No lacing to speak of.

S= Aromas were of caramel maltiness smothered in Belgian yeast funk and alcohol. The yeast produced a lot of bubble gum and tropical fruitiness.

T= This is a beer that moved through many stages in each sip. The sweet/caramel malts led off, followed soon by a short and slightly unpleasant sour dryness. Then midway the phenols kicked in and swung it back to the sweet and fruity side. The finish was mildly sour, spicy, and quite dry. Up and down and back and forth, these flavors were all over the place!

MF= Medium body (though just heavy enough to call it so) with a super crisp effervescent carbonation level.

D= I have to admit I was disappointed by this ale. I am a huge fan of the other Chouffe beers and I also love Scottish and Scottish-inspired ales so I probably had some difficult expectations to meet. Anyway, I would drink this again if I saw it on tap just to compare but otherwise this is one I will likely skip in the future.

Photo of peabody
3.48/5  rDev -12.3%
look: 4 | smell: 3.5 | taste: 3 | feel: 4 | overall: 4

Pours out a really dark brown to black with a slight opaqueness and very fine bubbles/offwhite to tan.
Smell is raisin and caramel malt with a belgian yeast that burns the nose. Not very strong but this might be too cold.
Very average tasting with lots of caramel and nice mellow malty sugar. No hops or fruit here.
Mouthfeel is a bit oily but still finishes clean.
Drinkability is only OK but still worth a try.

Photo of rabsten
4.22/5  rDev +6.3%
look: 3.5 | smell: 4 | taste: 4 | feel: 4.5 | overall: 5

Every now and again I come across something in my collection and I have no idea where I got it. This is one of those beers. I don't remember buying it. I rarely look in the Belgian section of Leo's and buy less frequently. I don't think it's a gift - I got one for Xmas 2005 and drank it then, I'm certain. So, it's a mystery. But where would life be without mysteries? A poorer place, indeed.

Poured into an East End pint, cloudy brown body, medium brown head that quickly disappears, no lacing to speak of.

Solid, light malt smell, some toasted barley and fruit in nose.

Very smooth tasting and drinking. Light malt sweetness backed by mild alcohol burn and a raisin/dried apricot fruitiness. Low hop profile with just enough of a bite to let the drinker know they're there.

Round start, crisp middle, smooth finish.

Very drinkable. More than the sum of its parts drinkable. "Get you in trouble real fast due to the high alcohol/drinkablity combination" drinkable.

Bottom line: I don't know how I got it but I'll likely get more of it.

McChouffe from Brasserie d'Achouffe
89 out of 100 based on 940 ratings.