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McChouffe - Brasserie d'Achouffe

Not Rated.

Educational use only; do not reuse.
very good

515 Reviews
very good

(Read More)
Reviews: 515
Hads: 1,022
Avg: 3.97
pDev: 14.61%
Wants: 45
Gots: 125 | 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: Reviews & Ratings
Sort by:  Recent | High | Low | Top Raters | Read the Alström Bros Beer Reviews and Beer Ratings of McChouffe Alström Bros
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Reviews: 515 | Hads: 1,022
Photo of rickyleepotts
2/5  rDev -49.6%
look: 2 | smell: 2 | taste: 2 | feel: 2 | overall: 2

I love hobbits! One thing that I am going to like about this project is learning more about the beers before drinking them. That won’t affect the way I write on the beers, as I am writing based on the nose and the flavor. But it’s cool to learn more about the beers, the brewery, etc. before trying them. Like this beer… the hobbit on the bottle, well that’s a Chouffe. I had no idea, but now it makes so much sense. Anyway, let’s drink.

The beer smells like any other brown ale. Not much going on really. But the smell does help with the first sip. It’s initially smooth, and best served chilled. It slides across the palate and settles on the back of your tongue. The aftertaste sticks around though.

The beer is a Belgian strong ale… and I must admit, I expected more. The bottle is HUGE, comfortable to a wine bottle. So when I spend this much money on a bottle of beer, I expected more. The head on the beer is thick, which makes me think there will be a creamy mouth feel… there’s not.

Now, I’m not saying this beer is bad… but to come all this way from the Belgium and just be this good, I am hurt! Come on beer guys, you can do better than that. I would buy a bottle of this again, but it would have to either be on sale or the liquor store would have to be out of everything else! I like the story of the hobbit… but sadly, that is more exciting than what lay in the glass. Bottoms up… if you can stomach it.

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Photo of mrasskicktastic
2.18/5  rDev -45.1%
look: 3 | smell: 2.5 | taste: 2 | feel: 2 | overall: 2

A - A medium head a top a very cloudy garnet brew. No lacing.

S - Cranberries, cigarettes, currants and cherries. Ugh.

T - Slightly malty wiht a bit of fruit: cherries, currants and cigarettes. Well the last one isn't really a fruit. It is a subtle flavor, but it is a crappy one. Aftertaste is slightly malty with a bit of cigarettes.

M - A little hars, medium bodied, a tad frothy and not very refreshing.

D - It tastes like fricking cigarettes! Come on!! This is just absurd. I guess I see why they have the Scottish element. If you coat anything with cigarettes it suddenly earns the qualifier of "Scottish." Ridiculous. Did I mention that I hate cigarettes?

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Photo of TerryW
2.5/5  rDev -37%
look: 2.5 | smell: 2.5 | taste: 2.5 | feel: 2.5 | overall: 2.5

Not offensive, but utterly devoid of character. A hint of sweet malts to taste and the slightest whiff of alcohol in the nose, but after that, almost a non-beer. Packs a bit of a punch with a high alcohol content, so good for a quiet buzz I suppose, but not something you would drink to savour in any way. Good to wash down a sandwich I guess. Certainly not like anything I'm reading about below ...

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Photo of ryanismean
2.71/5  rDev -31.7%
look: 4 | smell: 3 | taste: 2 | feel: 3.5 | overall: 3

Pours a deep hazy brown with a nice foamy head. Aroma is a little odd, not quite what I was expecting. It definitely smells Belgian, but I'm detecting some strange aromas of buttery fruit that I wasn't expecting. It's almost like someone took an overripe banana and sauteed it in butter. As much as I like bananas Foster, it isn't what I'm really looking for in a beer. It isn't unpleasant, but it's odd and I don't think it's right. I get the feeling this isn't what this beer is supposed to smell like.

Taste...well, I don't know what to say. I actually gagged on my first sip. I don't think that's ever happened before. It came across far too sweet, and overly buttery. I'm thinking diacetyl, but I dunno. I got over the funky flavor, and proceeded to finish the glass. Ignoring the bananas Foster, it displays a pretty pleasant malty flavor, a grainy caramelness that matches nicely with the super-esters which are hammering my palate. I can see what the brewmaster is going for, but something is just off about this bottle. I love estery Belgian beers, but this one just has some funk that seems horribly misplaced.

Mouthfeel is actually quite nice, thick and almost meaty but not too chewy. I like it. As far as drinkability, well, after I got past the initial shock of the off-flavor, I think I can finish this. But I get the feeling I may have grabbed the wrong bottle. I don't know what could have caused this, but I really like all the other Chouffe beers, so I am prepared to call this one an anomaly and try it again...but for now I can only judge it on what I have in front of me. Not so great.

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Photo of BlackHaddock
2.85/5  rDev -28.2%
look: 3 | smell: 3 | taste: 3 | feel: 2.5 | overall: 2.5

I was really looking forward to drinking this bottle, my wife and I had just finished putting up and decorating our Christmas tree, without shouting, or any stamping of feet etc.

We knew what was waiting, once we has sorted out how the tree should look (silver and blue, are the colours this year, I am told, gold and red were once in vogue, but not this year, OK!).

Best by, drink by date, on the .75 litre green bottle said 04/05/2009. I think we should have left it a year or two ( I wonder what colour coding will be the 'in thing' for christmas trees in 2008), because this beer left me and the wife sadly, unimpressed.

A dull aubergine body with an equally dull, dark, off-white head. I poured the beer into two Duvel glasses, one with no sediment, the second, got the lot. Obviously in the second glass the beer was darker and had a more earthy aroma and taste, but only just.

The aroma from both glasses was very poor, even as the beer warmed up. A slight malty, hoppy wiff arrived later, caramel maybe, but only the second glass with sediment in really had something to write about.

The taste was as the aroma, not flavourless, but I struggled to find anything that stood out, or made the beer noteworthy.

No body at all for an 8% brown beer.

I am sure I have had this beer before, when in Brussels, years ago, and enjoyed it, sadly, this review doesn't reflect that memory, only what I had tonight.

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Photo of Chadbrew
2.96/5  rDev -25.4%
look: 4 | smell: 3 | taste: 3 | feel: 3 | overall: 2.5

Picked up at Spirits Unlimited in Red Bank NJ.
Appearance - Dark brown, murky beer with a very large head that sticks around for a while. Speaking of sticking, there's some pretty good lacing.
Unfortunately this beer kinda goes down hill from hear.
Aroma - Sweet and plum-like full of candi sugars and malts.
Taste - Bitter-sweet with lots of residual sweetness, almost cloying in the finish. Some fruit tastes like raisins and bananas and too much clove.
Mouthfeel - Not a bad mouthfeel, I mean there is plenty of body.
Drinkability - Too much sweetness for my liking. I would have liked to have had this in a 12 oz instead of a big 1 pint 9.4 oz bottle. Didn't even finish it, and needless to say I probably won't pick another one of these up again.

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Photo of texashammer
3.01/5  rDev -24.2%
look: 4 | smell: 3 | taste: 3 | feel: 3.5 | overall: 2.5

Ruby brown with a tan head that leaves a nice lace that sparkles in the light. Definitely pretty. Smells somewhat of bready light malt and yeast, but overwhelmingly of metal. Smells like I'm biting into a cheap restaurant fork. In the taste teh metal continues to dominate and makes this beer not terribly drinkable. I did finish my first, small glass but declined a second pour.

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Photo of Cresant
3.03/5  rDev -23.7%
look: 3.5 | smell: 3 | taste: 3 | feel: 3 | overall: 3

Poured this 750 mL green bottle into a LaChouffe glass. Dated best by the end of 2009. The body was very deep red-amber and murky. The head was tan and small despite my vigorous pour.

Smell was of dark raisin bread. Spices.

Taste was vineous. Malty. There was a little alcohol sizzle.

Mouthfeel was medium bodied. Not enough carbonation which is surprising considering this is a bottle conditioned beer.

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Photo of matty
3.03/5  rDev -23.7%
look: 3.5 | smell: 3 | taste: 3 | feel: 3 | overall: 3

Brownish amber colored beer with a slowly fading head.Aoma is fruity and spicy.Taste is dark fruits,spices and scotch.Very bland and unimpressive.There is an alcoholic warmth at the end of each drink.Overall something that was nice to try once but something I ever doubt I would buy again.

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Photo of Shadman
3.03/5  rDev -23.7%
look: 3.5 | smell: 3 | taste: 3 | feel: 3 | overall: 3

Cloudy reddish-brown with a so-so head that settled into a tan cap that did not go away. No real lacing to speak of.

Some sweet malt that smells faintly like candied fruit. Slight hint of spiciness from the yeast...nothing to shout to the heavens about.

No great shakes in the taste dept. either. Alchohol noticeable in the front end, follwed by a slight sweet maltiness that I guess could be described as fruity. Finish is dry with just a hint of spiciness.

Kinda watery/astringent mouthfeel.

Ok, but @ $5.00/cdn per 500ml bottle there are several beers you can buy that are better for the same do-ray-me.

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Photo of BeerNemesis
3.03/5  rDev -23.7%
look: 4 | smell: 3.5 | taste: 3 | feel: 2.5 | overall: 2.5

McChouffe | 750 ml. | 8.0% ABV | 2010

Brewer: Brasserie d'Achouffe
Style: Belgian Strong Dark Ale
Glass: Chalice

Big fan of the little gnome on the large orange bottle cap.

Dense head the color of cappuccino foam atop a deep, brown body.

Phenols and earth tones. It also has an odd bubble gum and sangria-reminiscent twinge.

Peppery, and a bit phenolic with some hum-drum maltiness.

Wet and thin... like an eel. Nice image, right?

I was quite disappointed with the taste/mouthfeel combo.

Would I get it again?:
No. I have the orange bottle cap and that's all I need out of this.

Served: Aug. 2010

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Photo of Raven3464
3.06/5  rDev -22.9%
look: 4 | smell: 3 | taste: 3 | feel: 3 | overall: 3

Appearance: The beer pours a dark brown body with a fluffy tow finger head. Retention is good.

Smell: Dark fruits (mainly plums), a sweet malt aroma and a pinch of booze are noted.

Taste: Pleasant plume and brown sugar flavors are noticed early. Unfortunately, the aftertaste is dominated by a sweet malt and alcohol mix which is not as appealing.

Mouth feel: It is medium bodied with a small amount of carbonation.

Overall: I decided to try this brew after having La Chouffe, which I enjoyed immensely. Unfortunately, McChouffe is not nearly the same quality. This is not a bad beer but there is nothing special about it.

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Photo of donkeyrunner
3.06/5  rDev -22.9%
look: 4 | smell: 3 | taste: 3 | feel: 3 | overall: 3

Currently the Achouffe gnome and Long Trail bears are battling it out for my favorite beer mascots.

Auburn to sepia in color. Fluffy tan head that leaves sand dunes of retention that shift and blanket the beer. Drifts of lace.

Aroma is leafy, woodsy hickory toffee and brown sugar. Tastes of coppery caramel, clean, leafy hops nutmeg and cinnamon. Tastes a lot like GNC caramel mocha whey protein actually. Thin and monotone for a 8% Belgian.

Supposedly this pays hommage to the Scottish influence that Belgium received during WWII. More of a Belgian-y interpretation of a Northern English brown than anything resembling a Scottish ale. What a bummer. I expect more of Achouffe and their gnomish minions.

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Photo of Macca
3.06/5  rDev -22.9%
look: 4 | smell: 3 | taste: 3 | feel: 3 | overall: 3

It pours a cloudy red/brown with 1 finger of beige head which drops away quickly. Some light retention at first but this goes as well.
Some phenolics on the nose and some caramel sweetness.
This sweetness carries on to the palate and is a touch cloying towards the end. Alcohol is very evident. Medium carbonation.

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Photo of claytri
3.06/5  rDev -22.9%
look: 4 | smell: 3 | taste: 3 | feel: 3 | overall: 3

The beer poured a dark amber with a respectable tan head. The aroma was simply of good malt. The taste was very light malt a tad sweet. The feel was medium and dry. The label declares this a scotch belgian cross for me it just doesn't work. You basically took two things I love and combined them to give me something that weakly resembled both at times, but did nothing to make me go this is good.

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Photo of brantadid
3.06/5  rDev -22.9%
look: 4 | smell: 3 | taste: 3 | feel: 3 | overall: 3

Poured a brownish ruby color. Quite dark. Very thin, white head diminishing very quickly.

Sweet, malty nose. Yeast is present but hardly overpowering. Some dark fruit in nose.

Pretty high carbonation. Nice fizzy quality to this beer. Very sweet toasted malts on the front palate followed by some chocolate and fig flavors. Warmed a bit to reveal a slight sour quality.

Very light mouthfeel. Not viscous at all. Rather thin, but nice.

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Photo of EStreet20
3.08/5  rDev -22.4%
look: 4 | smell: 3.5 | taste: 2.5 | feel: 4 | overall: 3

750 ml bottle poured into a tall Alllagash chalice.

A - Pours out an amber tinted root beer color with a very big bubbly off white head. The head cakes up a little over the rim of the glass. Leaves a ton of lacing on the glass. Nice look.

S - A big bubble gum and fruity aroma along with a whiff of alcohol.

T - Some smoky, spicy hints over a slight malty tone. On the finish some hops and some more spice. however, every flavor in this beer seems very subdued. In fact, for the style, this beer really has very little flavor. I can't figure it out but it just seems like a dry beer with a little sweetness but no really bold flavors I expect out of quality Belgian darks. Nothing offensive, just nothing really to speak of.

M - Nice, well carbonated and very smooth.

D - Really just tastes very bland, which I find shocking due to the aroma. I wonder if I got a bad bottle.

Notes: Very odd that the taste just disappears. I don't think I'll go for this one again.

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Photo of PlutonowyManiek
3.1/5  rDev -21.9%
look: 4 | smell: 3.25 | taste: 2.75 | feel: 3.25 | overall: 3.25

The color is dark red, burgundy, cloudy.
The foam off-white, built of small and medium-sized bubbles. Unfortunately quite quickly subsides.
Mc Chouffe aroma is clearly malty, caramel, are also plums and hop grass.
The taste is unfortunately very weak. A little plums, caramel and a little bit of everything.
Gentian imperceptible. As for me, saturation far too high. When it comes to alcohol it is bad, completely not laid rejects. I must say that unfortunately I did not drink this beer with pleasure.

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Photo of sfprint
3.13/5  rDev -21.2%
look: 3.25 | smell: 2.75 | taste: 3.25 | feel: 3.75 | overall: 3

Exp. 11/2013
A: Dark rootbeer and opaque, rootbeer/cola like head and carbonation. bubbles cling to edge of glass.
S: There's a glue/plastic scent. Rubber boot. Also a dark fruity sweetness. Paint. Pretty strange
T: Alcohol is well hidden. Like a not so sweet soda with a strange flavor. In the cola/rootbeer family. odd
M: Explosion of carbonation upon sipping.
O: certainly an odd beer. I wouldn't jump at this one, but not that I can't appreciate it's quality and uniqueness.

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Photo of TMB0424
3.15/5  rDev -20.7%
look: 3 | smell: 3 | taste: 3 | feel: 3.5 | overall: 3.5

750 ML corked bottle. Poured into chalice

Pours a deep amber, nutty brown with a large loose off-white head. Head quickly recedes and leaves somewhat light lacing throughout.

Smell of alcohol, dark fruits - grapes, caramel-like malts. A little disappointed in the aroma, actually.

Tastes of smooth, tangy, fruity malts. Grapes come to the forefront. Light flavor of cherries, sugars. Has a slight peppery finish with a tiny toss of hoppy flavors. Very good carbonation as expected from a Belgian. Nice, warming alcohol warmth on the finish as well as a slight nutty flavor.

The nutty yeast is a nice touch and the sugary start/spicy finish is very pleasing. Somewhat refreshing. However, it has a fairly thin body and while it is an enjoying sipper, it is not something I would actively seek out. Solid brew, just I feel that something is lacking in the taste/aroma department for a Belgian dark.

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Photo of sabrills70
3.15/5  rDev -20.7%
look: 3.5 | smell: 3.5 | taste: 3 | feel: 3 | overall: 3

Poured from a 750ml bottlecapped bottle. Pours a chestnut brown with a 1 1/2 finger head with OK longevity and good lace. Smells of deep caramel malt and candy sugar with hints of vanilla and fruit. Tatse of Heavy malt again with candy sugar, vanilla and fruit. Slight phenols and hop bitterness. Alcohol is not as well hidden as it could and should be. High carbonation reduces drinkiability as it increases bloating. Not a bad Belgian, but there are far better ones out there.

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Photo of philipquarles
3.16/5  rDev -20.4%
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.

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Photo of ortsacul
3.18/5  rDev -19.9%
look: 4 | smell: 3.5 | taste: 3 | feel: 3 | overall: 3

Three fingered head that failed after 2 minutes.

A - rich glowing brown S - burnt malt, yeast, and a bit of coffee at the end T - much the same as the smell; the malt hits hard to start, followed by an alcohol filled burst of carbonation into the sinuses...I don't much enjoy heavy carbonation but the flavor is mild enough to make it tolerable M - over-carbonated for my taste and I did not skimp on the pour D - not my favorite Belgian brown but I will certainly finish the 25.4 oz bottle.

It was very earthy and mild, overall. The alcohol is well hidden considering the strength and for that it's impressive. Something that I may grab on a cold winter night by the fire.

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Photo of champ103
3.18/5  rDev -19.9%
look: 3.5 | smell: 3 | taste: 3 | feel: 3.5 | overall: 3.5

A: Pours a dark brown color. At first a beige head forms and rises to about two fingers. The head recedes in an instant. Not much lace to speak of.
S: Dry wood with lots of yeast and sweet malt. Some spicy aromas as well. Very dank and musky. Like wet cloths. Not a lot of depth here.
T: Follows the nose. Some dry wood, malt, and yeast.
M/D: A medium body with a little to much carbonation. Not hard to sip on for the style.

Kind of nondescript malt, and not much more. Not bad, but nothing that really gets me excited.

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

The brew appears a deep amber with a bubbly head that dissipates quickly but laces relatively well.

The aroma isn't pleasing to my nose, smeling of alcohol and bland nuts, mostly.

You can't really taste the alcohol, it's concealed by a complex mixture with fruits such as plum and cherry, with hints of caramel. However, nothing really stands out as delightful nor awful, but is a well balanced mixture despite the lack of highlights.

It generally tastes quite generic although very diferent than many of its dark ale brothers and is perhaps a tad over-carbonated, as well as watery.

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McChouffe from Brasserie d'Achouffe
89 out of 100 based on 515 ratings.