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McChouffe - Brasserie d'Achouffe


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

774 Ratings
very good

(view ratings)
Ratings: 774
Reviews: 482
rAvg: 3.97
pDev: 10.58%

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
Ratings: 774 | Reviews: 482 | Show All Ratings:
Photo of BruceWineworks

New Jersey

3.63/5  rDev -8.6%
look: 3.5 | smell: 3 | taste: 4 | feel: 3.5 | overall: 3.5

750ml bottle poured into a goblet.

A: Brown and faint with a light laving.

S: Fresh malty scent. Notes of toffee and caramel.

T: Nutty and spicy, think almonds, cinnamon, and nutmeg.

M: Fizzy creamy. Delectable.

D: Very well balanced. Flavorful and not too heavy, the large bottle was a perfect serving. Enjoy it.

Serving type: bottle

12-06-2010 23:33:19 | More by BruceWineworks
Photo of drummstikk


4.6/5  rDev +15.9%
look: 4 | smell: 4 | taste: 5 | feel: 4.5 | overall: 4.5

Immediate taste of dark crystal malts, toasted malts, and Belgian yeast phenols. What a great combination -- the spices and cloves of a good Belgian yeast like the Chouffe strain go so well with the lightly-kilned aromatics of a Scottish ale. This beer is light on the hops, which are floral and mild, and heavy on the light and sweet caramel flavor that comes from dark caramelized sucrose. Like a good wee heavy, you are simultaneously overwhelmed by malty sweetness and looking forward to your next sip. The dark caramel malts and caramelized sugar are nearly indistinguishable, with flavors of toffee, rum, and raisins. The aromatic malts and yeast give cloves, dark spices, and a nice earthiness coming from either yeast or dry-kilned malts. The body is on the lighter side of medium due to always-appreciated sugar additions, and the color is dark and rich without being black or opaque. The head is fluffy and dense like frosting on a desert. It's the contradiction between intense flavors, sweetness, and the surprisingly light (but not dry) finish that makes the beer so damn drinkable. The phenolics will send your mind into fantasy land, and the balance will send the beer to your belly.

Serving type: bottle

12-05-2010 22:56:29 | More by drummstikk
Photo of Zimbo

United Kingdom (Scotland)

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

What should have been a 60 minute drive from Dundee took me over seven hours. I think somebody should invest in a few more snow ploughs and some training as to how and when to use them. Fortunately I had a generous supply of Toblerone on board and a 750ml bottle of McCouffe waiting for me when I got home thereby combining some of my favourite styles of Winter brews-Belgian strong and 90 ('wee heavy').

Poured into my Duvel tulip (similar in shape to the d'Achouffe glass) this just looked superb. Big thick rocky head which gave complex light lacing around the glass as the beer disappeared. Beautiful rich ever so slightly cloudy brown. Fullish bodied with just an undercurrant of carbonation which gave the odd burp. Delicious restrained candy sugar element here but none of the rich morishness you might associate with a 'wee heavy' inspired brew but structually quite similar. Alcohol is so well hidden but also quite potent.

In the past I've often found d'Achouffe beers to be somewhat muddled in flavour for my liking but this one is full of definition. Truly greater than the sum of its parts. Yum.

Serving type: bottle

11-29-2010 10:28:04 | More by Zimbo
Photo of punkrkr27


3.88/5  rDev -2.3%
look: 5 | smell: 4.5 | taste: 3.5 | feel: 3.5 | overall: 4

Deep brown pour with a gigantic, rocky, tan head. Complex aroma of figs, cocoa, nuts, leather, tobacco, alcohol, fall leaves, and soft peat. A lot of that aroma gets hidden in the flavor but it still has some nice warming layers of peat, caramel, cocoa, nuts and alcohol. Dry, medium body with plentiful carbonation.

Serving type: bottle

11-22-2010 17:47:30 | More by punkrkr27
Photo of stephens101


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

I'm a big fan of LaChouffe, so let's see what it's other sibling has to offer. Dark brown in color with some dark red streaks at the very edges. The slight tan head clears off quickly and leaves a few small dots of lace to and fro. Aroma involves big dark fruits (cherries, grapes, figs) up front and a slight malty sweetness in the back. Tastes Vinous and sugary with a big alcohol heat in the middle. A bit of graininess exists. Goes down clean, dry and a bit thin. A Belgian Strong Dark that leaves a bit to be desired, especially when compared to it's lighter, spicier brother, but worth a try.

Serving type: bottle

09-18-2010 00:21:28 | More by stephens101
Photo of jeranbrews


3.43/5  rDev -13.6%
look: 4 | smell: 3.5 | taste: 3.5 | feel: 2.5 | overall: 3.5


A - A brown eggshell head. the consistency of packing foam. Slightly cloudy varnished wood color.

S - hoppy smells like a light bock.  Also some caramel and or chocolate malts.

T - Diluted cheap chocolate flavors like a mousse. With some mild hops and some fusil oil flavors. Aftertaste is subdued but a mix of sweetness and alcohol burn.

M - a bit thin for this style. Wateriness and alcohol burn dominate mouthfeel.

D - like it a bit more than the blonde but it's a bit too simple to drink very often.

Serving type: bottle

09-11-2010 05:18:44 | More by jeranbrews
Photo of SmokinSmyth


3.7/5  rDev -6.8%
look: 4 | smell: 3.5 | taste: 4 | feel: 3 | overall: 3.5

I had this after a similar (750 ml) bottle of the blonde. Very nice pour, with a good head, but nothing I couldn't keep in the glass.

I drank it at the end of dinner (chicken kabobs) and onto the patio with the kids. Although the head disappears after a short while, the beer tasted great.

Again, I don't know how they hide the higher ABV in such a good tasting beer. The chocolate/cocoa taste you expect from a beer with half the alcohol content.

Not too heavy, with just the right amount of taste left behind.

Serving type: bottle

09-05-2010 18:20:34 | More by SmokinSmyth
Photo of tbeckett

Ontario (Canada)

3.58/5  rDev -9.8%
look: 4 | smell: 4.5 | taste: 3.5 | feel: 4 | overall: 2.5

Bottle into a Stella glass.

A - Light tan head that stays tight and sticks around through the duration of the tasting. Nice ruby colour with some yeast goodies.

S - Lot's of dark fruit and candy sugar aromas.

T - Malty. Lot's of big malt flavours. Really sweet. Dark fruit as well.

M - Thick feeling. Medium body.

D - Too sweet to session. Good for a few sips from a big bottle but I couldn't have much more.

Serving type: bottle

09-04-2010 05:40:02 | More by tbeckett
Photo of juju7


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

Textbook stuff. A lovely sunburst tobacco kind of colour. Dense head and decent lacing. Some dried fruits, baked bread, cinnamon, nutmeg. A meal in itself - quite chewy and thick (in a good way), some serious phenol action which isn't too unpleasant with a long yeasty finish. Ticks all the boxes. Yummy stuff.

Serving type: bottle

08-29-2010 09:27:40 | More by juju7
Photo of nectar14


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

From a 375 mL provided by the Greff's, of Arbor Brewing, Ann Arbor, MI.

A: Dark brown/amber color, letting some light through. Pale tan head, about 1/2 finger. Fades to lace around the edges.

S: Largely caramel malt, a hint of raisin and nuts.

T: Similar flavors, which show pleasant clarity and definition. Really quite focused, which is nice, in spite of not that much complexity.

M: Medium to full body, a bit syrupy (just a bit) due to the caramel malts.

D: Nice and easy drinking, though a touch heavy. Good beer.

Serving type: bottle

08-24-2010 15:27:34 | More by nectar14
Photo of BeerNemesis

New York

3/5  rDev -24.4%
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

Serving type: bottle

08-22-2010 17:29:11 | More by BeerNemesis
Photo of metter98

New York

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

A: The beer poured cloudy dark brown in color into a snifter glass with a finger sized off white head that quickly died down into a thin layer of bubbles covering the surface. A moderate amount of carbonation is visible.
S: The aroma isn't that strong but is somewhat musty and has notes of dark fruits and yeast.
T: Mild spicy flavors of yeast dominate the overall taste, which also has notes of dark fruits and nuts along with some hints of caramel and malty sweetness. Some spiciness and a slight amount of hop bitterness are noticeable in the finish.
M: It feels light- to medium-bodied and smooth on the palate with a moderate amount of carbonation.
D: The beer is rather easy to drink because the alcohol is well hidden from both the smell and taste.

Serving type: bottle

08-21-2010 02:06:13 | More by metter98
Photo of catrone


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

A: dark brown color with a thick two fingers head, that even reducing, lasts until the end of the glass.

S: Sweet malt and fruits with light notes of spices.

T: Sweet malt, sugar, fruits and spices hides the 8% alcohol, making it taste excellent.

M: Despite a round and sweet taste the aftertaste is bittersweet and not long lasting, making you want more.

D: excellent and very drinkable, good both with red meat or just by itself

Serving type: bottle

08-20-2010 10:03:17 | More by catrone
Photo of xylophonica


4.68/5  rDev +17.9%
look: 4.5 | smell: 4.5 | taste: 5 | feel: 4 | overall: 4.5

Poured from a 75cl bottle into a tulip.

A - Big head, very dark colour. Excellent lacing.

S - Sweet dark malts and hops. Lots of sugar-candy aromas and plenty of spices. Bit of earthiness and scotch as well.

T - Very smooth and refreshing. Spiciness coupled with the sugary-smoothness creates a fantastic taste. Possibly better than the standard La Chouffe..

M - Enough carbonation to keep your mouth alive but subtle enough to pass unnoticed to the uninitiated.

D - Delightful. Could drink all day. And I thought the other one was good..!

This is the first time I've tried a second beer from the Chouffe stable (after sampling La Chouffe on countless occasions). Happy to say this did not disappoint and will look forward to (hopefully) sampling on tap when I'm in Belgium later this month.

Serving type: bottle

08-07-2010 13:08:57 | More by xylophonica
Photo of Jeffo


3.93/5  rDev -1%
look: 3.5 | smell: 4 | taste: 4 | feel: 3.5 | overall: 4

Got this at the bottle shop down the road.

From a bottle into a tulip.

APPEARANCE: Pours a three finger off-white head with good retention. Maroon or burgundy in color, cloudy, with medium carbonation evident. Eventually fades to a thin foam cap leaving some lacing on the glass. A wisp remains until the end leaving a bit of lacing down the glass.

SMELL: A mild but pleasant nose of sweet caramel malt, dark fruits, raisins mostly, and some brown sugar. Some spicy notes and yeasty aromas as well.

TASTE: Sweet caramel again with more yeasty spices and dark fruits, much like the nose had advertised. Raisins, pepper and coriander feature. Mild aftertaste and a relatively dry finish.

PALATE: Medium body and semi-creamy smooth on the palate. Goes down smooth and finishes slightly drier on the palate.

OVERALL: As solid a brune as their pale is a pale, though the palate is a little bigger on this one. Enjoyed this and would pick it up again at a bar or restaurant. Solid effort.

Serving type: bottle

07-22-2010 20:01:20 | More by Jeffo
Photo of thagr81us

South Carolina

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

2004 Vintage. Served from bottle into a tulip. Pours a dark brown amber with a one finger off white head. It maintains decent lacing throughout. The aroma was comprised of bananas, alcohol, malt, and brown sugar. The flavor was of fruit, massive malt, and slight alcohol. It was medium on the palate with high carbonation. Overall, this beer was excellent. Couldn't find a single thing wrong with it. It definitely aged very well if you can get ahold of an aged version you owe it to your taste buds to try it.

Serving type: bottle

07-16-2010 14:28:18 | More by thagr81us
Photo of eric5bellies


3.93/5  rDev -1%
look: 3.5 | smell: 4 | taste: 4 | feel: 3.5 | overall: 4

Drank from my Westmalle Chalice

A - Pors a clody mahogany cdolour with an off white head that reduces to a film.

S - Slightly nutty with plenty of roasted malt and dark fruit.

T - Plenty of dark fruits, bread, yeast and caramel.

M - A little bit under done in body and good carbonation.

D - A solid Bruin without grabbing you by the balls.

Serving type: bottle

07-05-2010 20:40:41 | More by eric5bellies
Photo of htomsirveaux


3.58/5  rDev -9.8%
look: 3 | smell: 4 | taste: 3.5 | feel: 3.5 | overall: 3.5

11.2 oz. bottle tried 27 Dec 2007.

Very fizzy medium tan head. Slightly cloudy ruby brown color. Smells like cola and apples, sweet. Starts somewhat wheaty and bready. Not as sweet as expected from the aroma. Some cinnamon and nutmeg in the middle. Touch of vanilla. Alcohol shows up in the finish. Medium to light body.

Not bad but not something I'd rush out to get again.

Serving type: bottle

07-03-2010 03:53:06 | More by htomsirveaux
Photo of sherrijax


4.83/5  rDev +21.7%
look: 4.5 | smell: 4.5 | taste: 5 | feel: 4.5 | overall: 5

Chose this beer after touring the Achouffe Brewery in Belgium. You leave there and go a Cafe Chesar about .5 miles away for your 2 tastings included with the tour. Of all the beers we tasted while in Belgium, this was my second favorite beer behind Westvleteren 12. I love the malty, carmel, toasty aroma followed by the sweet fruit variety of tastes taste on your tongue with the smooth dry finish. I found it to be a great complex beer with changing notes as it warmed. I thought it was outstanding and since I can't get Westvleteren 12 in the States, it is my new favorite for home drinking.

Serving type: bottle

07-01-2010 13:42:08 | More by sherrijax
Photo of bobsy

Ontario (Canada)

3.68/5  rDev -7.3%
look: 4 | smell: 3.5 | taste: 3.5 | feel: 4 | overall: 4

Big ole 750 shared by Colin - cheers! I also have a bottle from zorprine cellaring away, so thanks to him for that one too!

Pours a rich brown with an aggressive light tan head that eventually drops to a film, leaving some nice lace spots. Sweet, spicy aroma, with raisins, brown sugar and bread. Sweet dark fruit flavour has touches of raisin, sweetbread and spice. In fact its positively like a dubbel, and not too bad for it either. What hopping is there is certainly very light, as there's only the mildest of bites in the finish, and it can't hold up to the sweetness. There's also a slightly grassy quality to it, which may be hops, or may be faint skunking (either way I thought it added to the beer).The body seems to suit the flavours well with its medium weight and pleasing carbonation.

Another 'not quite what I expected' beer on a night that seemed full of them, but I really enjoyed this BSDA / dubbel hybrid, and found it ridiculously drinkable considering its ABV. A touch more heft to the flavour and this one would be competing with some of the better dubbels out there, but as it stands it seems more dubbel-Belgian strong dark lite.

Serving type: bottle

06-17-2010 13:20:51 | More by bobsy
Photo of Pencible


3.9/5  rDev -1.8%
look: 4 | smell: 4 | taste: 4 | feel: 3 | overall: 4

A: This poured a hazy mahogany with a fair amount of tan head.
S: It smelled like dry roasted barley and earthy caramel, with some nutty malt and sour yeast and copper.
T: It tasted like sweet raisins and cherries and caramel, with sour yeast and nutty malt and bread crust.
M: It was watery with smooth carbonation, and had a bittersweet aftertaste.
D: This was an interesting beer with a nice blend of flavors. The Belgian and Scottish styles were well integrated - almost too well because it ended up seeming more like a standard dark Belgian ale. Regardless, it had decent body (would have preferred a bit thicker), and it hid the alcohol well, so it was easy to drink. This would possibly improve with some age, but it was still enjoyable fresh.

Serving type: bottle

06-09-2010 19:52:16 | More by Pencible
Photo of JoEBoBpr


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

Poured into a 25cl Chimay goblet form a 75cl bottle.

A - Pours a very nice strong brown color with some slight reddish hues. There is some nice active carbonation and a nice .25 inch head that is off white and with medium sized bubbles.

S - Delicious malt sweetness, with caramel hints and spices such as vanilla and clove. There is also a nice presence of yeast in the nose.

T - The taste starts off with some nice bready malts. Followed by some dark fruit sweetness as well as some pineapple and some clove hints. Nice vanilla hints in the flavors as well. There is some mild phenols present and some nice chalky yeast as well.

M & D - The mouthfeel could be a little fuller in my book but its still very nice and frothy with good CO2. Delicious offering and not bad for 8%.

Serving type: bottle

06-08-2010 23:05:00 | More by JoEBoBpr
Photo of Daniell


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

A: pours with a pretty decent amount of head and good lacing. Nice colour, lots of sediment. 4

S: It's hard to pick out individual flavour profiles in this beer- chiefly I get yeast and malt. I was worried it'd be skunked like the La Chouffe I had (although obviously with a brown beer it's less of a worry) but it doesn't seem to be. Initially I got metallic notes in the taste and nose but these seem to have died down now. As it warms I get plum. Yer, it's not far off the trappist darks. Later on I'm also actually getting coffee grinds in the nose. Weird. 4

T: Again I find it hard to pick out individual flavour notes in the beer. It's not bad though. It's kind of like a sweet (but not too sweet) nectar. It seems really balanced and drinkable and I'm actually really enjoying it and think I could drink a lot of it. Much as I'd love to say plums I'm not really getting them here, although it does just generally remind me a bit of quality Belgians (as it should). Even if it might be a bit skunked the metallic taste isn't that unwelcome. A charismatic beer which hides its full flavour from you. 4

M: The mouthfeel's actually really good on this one, pretty much perfect. 4.5

D: Yep, this one's drinkable. For a dark beer at 8% I'd have to make this either a 4 or 4.5. Probably a 4.5 actually, the sweetness is the only thing threatening this high score. 4.5

Serving type: bottle

06-04-2010 10:07:47 | More by Daniell
Photo of markaberrant

Saskatchewan (Canada)

3.68/5  rDev -7.3%
look: 4 | smell: 3.5 | taste: 3.5 | feel: 4 | overall: 4

A - opaque in my snifter, bubbly light tan head, leaves a bit of lacing behind.

S - fruity, figgy, some fresh spice, almost-saaz like, not a ton of "dark" fruit aromas, but still pretty nice

T - very "grapey" to start, vinous, not super dark or rich, but this isn't a huge beer, so ok, low bitterness, aftertaste is fairly short

M - very light, mouthfilling carbonation, gentle prickles, smooth alcohol, dry finish

D - about as good as any dubbel, not really big or bold enough to be a dark strong

I'm not a big fan of dubbels in general, I'd sooner have the bigger, bolder taste of a dark strong, or else the lighter/brighter/hoppier flavours of a tripel/blonde. Regardless, this is a nice dubbel - if they are your thang, you definitely need to give this one a try.

Serving type: bottle

05-09-2010 22:41:28 | More by markaberrant
Photo of generallee

New York

4.58/5  rDev +15.4%
look: 5 | smell: 4.5 | taste: 4.5 | feel: 5 | overall: 4.5

Presentation: It was poured from a green 1pt 9.4oz bottle into a tulip glass. The abv is listed at 8.0% on the label and the freshness date reads "BEST BEFORE END 2011". The label also has a description of the beer its ingredients and the brewery.

Appearance: It is cloudy and dark brown in color. Through the murky body lots of visible carbonation can be seen rising up to the thick tan head above. This thick tan head has a dusting of darker brown yeast that looks like it was sprinkled with cinnamon. The retention is excellent and it leaves lots of cool lace rings and patterns.

Smell: The aroma is very big and pleasant. It has wonderful sweet bready a fruity maltiness with sour, funky and earthy yeast.

Taste/Palate: It has a deep rich malty character with notes of rich sweet breads, some dark sweet fruits, and sour cherries. It also has a defiant Belgian yeast influence as well, with some funky, dusty, earthy notes. (All in good balance) Also in good balance are the hop notes which are kind earthy and floral. They bring a good balance of hop bitterness to the finish which is a prefect mix of all complexity. The palate has a smooth firmness with a very lively and active yet gentle carbonation.

Notes: Outstanding!!! (IMO) I love the balance, the complexity and the feel.

Serving type: bottle

05-07-2010 15:54:13 | More by generallee
McChouffe from Brasserie d'Achouffe
89 out of 100 based on 774 ratings.