Dismiss Notice
Save $5 when you subscribe to 12 issues / year of BeerAdvocate magazine and select auto-renew.

Subscribe now →
Dismiss Notice
Join Our Email List →

And we'll send you the latest updates and offers from BeerAdvocate, because knowing is half the battle.
Dismiss Notice

Pre-order your Respect Beer "Hipster" Hoodie today!

Plus: Free shipping (US only) on orders of $25 or more until 12/18/15. Just select "Free Shipping" at checkout.

Shop now →

McChouffe - Brasserie d'Achouffe

Not Rated.

Educational use only; do not reuse.
very good

517 Reviews
very good

(Read More)
Reviews: 517
Hads: 1,033
Avg: 3.97
pDev: 14.61%
Wants: 45
Gots: 135 | 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
Reviews: 517 | Hads: 1,033
Photo of sbrotschul
3.74/5  rDev -5.8%
look: 5 | smell: 3.5 | taste: 3.5 | feel: 4 | overall: 4

This is an interesting year ... my wife is in northern France on a teaching exchange through the Fulbright program, allowing me to visit from the US during vacations. I picked up a small selection of beers and a couple of glasses that were suggested by the store owner of an excellent bottle shop in Tournai, Belgium. (See below for my description of the shop and how we found it.)

My wife pointed out Chouffe, as her eye was drawn to the gnome on the label. Unofficially, this is our "Year of the Gnome," so we picked up a Mc Choufee, a La Choufee, and a tulip glass (with gnome bending over) created by Brasserie d'Achouffe in Belgium. I served this along with foie gras and date jelly on toast.

Appearance: (5.0). The initial pour was perfect, with a fluffy brown head about to poke through the brim of the glass. A nice carmel/ mahogany brown color, which made the gnome bending over on my glass, look as if he was gardening in dark soil.

Smell (3.5). Light, earthy, smell with hints of brown sugar, and figs.

Taste (3.5). Hints of carmel and fruits poke through with a slight alcohol breath upon finishing.

Mouthfeel (4.0). Great carbination -- not too many bubbles, but a fun finish

Overall (4.0). A good beer. I'll buy more on my next trip.

*** Le Moine Austère ***
Just up the road from us in Beligum, is a wonderful bottle shop called the Austere Monk (I'll review it after BA adds it: Le Moine Austère, Rue Dorez 8, Tournai, Belgium) (a review: http://www.monnuage.fr/point-d-interet/le-moine-austere-a41282). My wife and kids found the shop while touring the Grand Place and visiting the Christmas village. The family was excited to bring me to the store and even sent a few photos of the wall of bottles.

As I looked at the selection, I instantly wished that I knew more about Belgium beers. I understand a little French and shopkeeper was willing to bring to me some of the local beers and the traditional favorites. (Side note: it is *very* helpful to have a wife that speaks and understands French!) She pointed out which beers were still made by monks (down to five, she said), and those breweries which tend to create craft beers. She loves to make gift baskets, filled with beers, glasses and other treats. I can't wait to return!

 2,260 characters

Photo of corby112
3.36/5  rDev -15.4%
look: 4 | smell: 3 | taste: 3.5 | feel: 3 | overall: 3.5

Draft at the Pour House in Westmont, NJ.

Pours a dark chocolate brown color with a 1.5 finger beige head that slowly fades into a lastig ring.  Streaks of soapy lacing left behind.

Subtle roasted malt aroma with some zesty spice and dark fruit notes.  Slightly peppery with hints of chocolate, toast, caramel and nut.

Medium bodied with a nice balance of zesty spice, sweet malt and dark fruit.  Lots of peppery spice up front followed by sweet malt flavors, notably caramel and toffee before finishing with a prominent dark fruit presence.  Hints of plum, raisin, currant and other dark berries.  Subtle alcohol sweetness but not much heat.  Could use a stronger malt character to balance out swet fruits but still pretty good.

 740 characters

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

Nice deep amber color capped by a small sized off white heads. Scent trends sweet with caramel, plum, balanced by light grass. Taste is also sweet, caramel, light plum and cherry. Wish the flavors were more pronounced but tasty no the less. Light bodied, yum.

 259 characters

Photo of stevoj
4.6/5  rDev +15.9%
look: 4.5 | smell: 4.5 | taste: 4.75 | feel: 4.5 | overall: 4.5

nummy...nummy.nummmy. One of my belgian favorites. Nice fruity, smoky flavor, with no hint at the alcohol content. Beautiful to to look at and even better to drink....

 167 characters

Photo of Vylo
4.88/5  rDev +22.9%
look: 5 | smell: 4.5 | taste: 5 | feel: 5 | overall: 5

Amazing beer, simply put.

I uncorked this expecting a decent, yet overall mediocre beer with my meal. I was taken back by the robust flavor of the beer. It was not only outstanding on its own, but enhanced the flavor of my meal (burger). I found myself savoring every sip of this fine drink. A complex and greatly enjoyable drink. If you are a fan of belgian ales, this will not fail to impress. I will be buying this regularly.

 430 characters

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

random choice from my local shop

A - heavy green bottle, cutesy elf character lets you know it's a Euro beer through and through. beer pours a burnt orange with traces of sediment. the head on this thing is absurd....foamy, sticky, highly active carbonation. very nice

S - smells slightly of Belgian yeast, fruity character present

T - having grown a little sick (often literally) of the Belgian taste, this is welcoming to me. slight classic funk, but the taste is a harmonizer, not lead. warm peppery malt gives way to a huge caramel and buttery taste, with a buttered bread finish.

M - very lively and sharp carbonation, body is medium but sticky, leaving the caramel and butter flavors all around your mouth for a while

O - can't complain at all about this one. very solid for the style and a very good beer all around

 827 characters

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

Review taken from notes. Thanks to jlindros for sharing.

A - Pours a slightly hazy mahogany with a very light thin head that leaves nice light side lacing.

S - Very light belgian yeast aromas, with some dark fruits light chocolate.

T - Very nice belgian yeast notes, some sweet carmel malts, good rich dark fruits, and some very nice chocolate (cocoa powder).

M - Nice carbonation here. It is not too heavy or syrupy.

O - I liked this beer. Not a bad offering from d'Achouffe.

 481 characters

Photo of evlu1441
4.02/5  rDev +1.3%
look: 4 | smell: 4.5 | taste: 4 | feel: 3 | overall: 4

It pours a rich, dark, and slightly hazy mahogany colour. The head is sparse and foamy .

The aroma is rich and fruity. Pear come through alongside some light cocoa in the background. The some rum notes come through as well alongside a slight boozy aspect.

The flavour is very aromatic and rich. A slight toffee flavour is present throughout. alongside a slight alcoholic warming component.

Overall, the flavour leaves a bit to be desired, but this is still worth checking out. An interesting take on a Scotch Ale from a belgian brewer.

 538 characters

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

A: 3/4" tan coloured head that left a nice lacing in my Duvel tulip over cloudy brown liquid.

S: Brown sugar, molasses, yeast, figs, quite a sweet smell.

T: Cloves and peppery hops up front, which transitions to a malty finish with molasses, figs, brown sugar and some alcohol.

M: Thick viscosity with a medium to high level of fine carbonation.

O: A better than average Dubbel that would be better if the alcohol taste did not come through as much.

 453 characters

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

Thanks to Lynda for bringing this back from Belgium.

Light fizzy head quickly light lacing hazy ruby auburn color.

Nose earthy root like aromas, herbal, esters galore, molasses and syrupy almost candy, even a bit nutty.

Taste light malts, darker nutty malts, very earthy and slight herbal again, esters, chewy nougat almost, molasses and candy. Tons of fruit, plum, raisin, fig, date, etc. bit bitter and semi sweet.

Med bodied, dec carb, bit syrupy.

Overall nice Belgian strong dark/dubbel style, a bit much on the esters and sticky sweet flavors, but nice fruits balance it.

 581 characters

Photo of Mar02x
4/5  rDev +0.8%
look: 4 | smell: 4 | taste: 4 | feel: 4 | overall: 4

A - A dark redisch to brown hazy fluid with a fluffy off white head that stings to the glass.

S - Citrus and yeasty smell, smells like a double. There is not much sweetness in the smell.

T - Some sweet caramel and brown sugar, nicly in balance with the hops, vigs, dark fruit and other spices.

M - Good carbonation, perfect thickness for it's kind.

O - A good double, no doubt about it, nicely balanced.

 408 characters

Photo of Thorpe429
4.2/5  rDev +5.8%
look: 4.5 | smell: 4.5 | taste: 4 | feel: 4.5 | overall: 4

From the bottle at De Kelk in Brugge during last week's trip to Belgium. Reviewed from notes.

Serve in a McChouffe chalice.

Pours dark brown with a nice, foamy light tan head. Good retention and plenty of lacing.

Nose brings loads of dark fruits and a bit of sweetness. Flavor falls along the same lines, though the two don't mix quite as well as in the nose. Medium body and good carbonation. Semi-dry finish. Well made and quite tasty.

 440 characters

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

Appearance: A beautiful deep brown with a big brown head.

Aroma: First smell out of the bottle was sweet caramel. A second whiff after the pour slight hops.

Mouthfeel: Happy bubbles to greet you followed by rich medium/full body.

Taste: sweet malt coming in, followed by very slight bitterness that lingers for short while.

Overall: Very happy with this 8%- went down real easy (actually a bit too easy I finished it before I was ready).

I bought this at a Belgian beer festival, and the promoters labeled this in their Specialty beer unfiltered brown ale category. I think that this is a better classification than BA's 'Belgian Strong Dark Ale'

 654 characters

Photo of 4000qtrap
3.3/5  rDev -16.9%
look: 3 | smell: 3 | taste: 3.5 | feel: 3 | overall: 3.5

Source/Serving: 750 mL bottle

S: Peppery brown bread crust. Fairy dry. Notes of espresso, and mocha with heavy, moderately complex spiciness as well as blackened bits of toast. Yeast spiciness actually stands up and perhaps slightly outperform the brown character which itself is quite rich and dry.

T: Similar to the nose with heaps of peppery brown bread crust which were ever so slightly burned. While not overwhelming dry, but all flavors tends to be dry. Dry pepper and complex spiciness, dry brown toasted quite melanoidin-y malts. Very little malty sweetness though. However, an overall lack of bitterness saves the palette from an unpleasant onslaught. Light mint, herbal hops round out the middle. Finish has a touch of minty herbal hop to it with lingering dark cocoa and spiced brown bread.

 803 characters

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

A - Extreme dark brown, thin bubbly head, fleeting strands of lace.

S - Sweet malts, caramel, plum, figs. Nice.

T - Dark fruit and spice. Brown sugar over figs and plums. Some licorice. No bitterness to it at all. Very pleasant.

M - Moderate in body. Right carbonation.

O - A sweet, spicy nectar. No heat to it even as it warms. Delicious, just falls below the top BSDAs in terms of complexity.

 398 characters

Photo of mikedotnet
4.12/5  rDev +3.8%
look: 3.5 | smell: 4 | taste: 4.5 | feel: 3.5 | overall: 4

A - Medium-to-dark brown body; fluffy light brown head that dissipates quickly

S - Wonderful aroma- figs, plums, and dark candies make this extremely pleasant to smell

T - This has an absolutely stellar taste- not too sweet, but with plenty of typical Belgian strong dark ale fruitiness and candied sugar presence. There is absolutely no bitterness at all. It's rather one-dimensional, but not in a bad way; the highly-enjoyable taste is rather consistent throughout.

M - Not as much carbonation as I would like; this is somewhat tame compared to other Belgians. It's a little thinner than what I would expect as well, but it's nevertheless very enjoyable.

O - Aside from the low carbonation (which is still enjoyable), I have no complaints whatsoever. It seems like more of a slightly-strong dubbel than a strong dark ale, so for the price I'd probably grab a case of Westmalle Dubbel instead (just because that's one of my favorites). Nevertheless, I'm very glad I picked this up. If you like strong, dark, fruity, Belgian ales, you will not be disappointed by this.

 1,072 characters

Photo of July2Nov
3.53/5  rDev -11.1%
look: 4 | smell: 3.5 | taste: 3.5 | feel: 3.5 | overall: 3.5

Appearance: Cloudy brown cola in color. with a foamy head.

Smell: Bready and sweet.

Taste & Mouthfeel: Lighter to medium in body. Clean. Slightly sweet and bready with notes of plum/raisins. Slight syrupy in the end. Good malts throughout it all.

Overall: Anything with a gnome on the label has my attention and this certainly did. It was a good beer with some good flavor, but nothing I would actively search out. Good overall.

 433 characters

Photo of StJamesGate
3.97/5  rDev 0%
look: 3.5 | smell: 4 | taste: 4 | feel: 4 | overall: 4

Dark cranberry with off-white film. Smoke, berry and dark malt on the nose.
Dark berry, chocolate malt, and bark, a big forest fruit jam hit, candy sugar and some clovey yeast and deep spicy hay hops to finish and linger.
Light to medium, fizzy, and slightly chewy.

A self-described Scotch ale.

Belgian character underneath a lot of sweet malts. Not very Scottish, in spite of what they were aiming for. Berry too up front. A sipper.

 437 characters

Photo of impending
3.32/5  rDev -16.4%
look: 3.5 | smell: 4 | taste: 3 | feel: 3.5 | overall: 3

750ml into a tulip. Pours a chestnut cola with garnet highlights. Mocha colored head subsides slow to the surface, nice lacing.

Traditional strong dark with nice phenolic spiciness. upbeat

Achouffe yeast dominates the front end, the dark fruits are under represented. Not much in the way of complexity. The phenols that share the aftertaste are not a strength, hint of a tiny old penny. Medium bodied smooth mouthfeel.

Strong singed peat moss would have been very welcome.

 485 characters

Photo of elgiacomo
4.1/5  rDev +3.3%
look: 4.5 | smell: 4.5 | taste: 4 | feel: 3.5 | overall: 4

750ml bottle, best by end of 2011. Served at around 65F.

A bit of a gusher upon opening, pours dark brown with red highlights and a fair bit of sediment. Initial two finger foamy, rocky head that diminishes to a foamy ring and light cap and leaves some nice lacing.

Aroma is very much that of a Belgian Strong Dark Ale, Belgian yeast, candi sugar, dark fruits, dark breads, some alcohol, and perhaps a hint of peat. Very good strength and probably my favorite part of the beer.

Flavor is dark fruits, cherries, raisins, figs, candi/brown sugar, Belgian yeast, toast & bread, some caramel and toffee, moderate sweetness, within range for the style, a bit of alcohol on the finish despite being only 8% and having some age under its belt...less so as I work my way through the bottle.

Mouthfeel is light/medium bodied with strong scrubbing carbonation.

More Belgian than Scotch but never-the-less a very tasty brew. This has been on my to-do list for quite a while so I’m glad to finally have gotten around to trying it.

 1,025 characters

Photo of illidurit
3.39/5  rDev -14.6%
look: 2.5 | smell: 3.5 | taste: 3.5 | feel: 3 | overall: 3.5

12 ounce stubby bottle poured into a Rochefort goblet. Deep russet brown with an ecru head. Poor retention, unbecoming of a Belgian beer, and little lacing. Aroma is primarily bready, dark fresh-baked bread to be exact, with some dusty raisins and vague red fruits. A little booze as well. Flavor is mild for the alcohol level; there's a pleasant bready grainy malt profile with an unsweet chocolate undercurrent but not much in the way of fruity esters. Sweet caramel malt finish, dry with a soft alcohol presence. Palate is overrun by carbonation. This needs some swirling and time to settle down. I was expecting a dubbel flavor profile out of this dark 8% beer but that's just not what it is. Rather pedestrian but not bad.

Edit: Turns out this is a scotch ale. Weird, wasn't expecting that. Explains the lack of yeasty/fruity notes, obviously, but it still doesn't cut it overall.

 886 characters

Photo of OWSLEY069
4.3/5  rDev +8.3%
look: 4 | smell: 4 | taste: 4.5 | feel: 4 | overall: 4.5

Pours a hazy deep amber to brown in color with a light tan head. In the aroma, earthy and candy sugar. In the taste, earth, peet, malty, and a small candy sugar. A yeasty and sugar bite and medium bodied mouthfeel, with a small dry earthy aftertaste. Almost saison like, small dry amlt and great.

 296 characters

Photo of Beejay
3.95/5  rDev -0.5%
look: 4 | smell: 4 | taste: 4 | feel: 3.5 | overall: 4

A: A murky dark brown, with red notes when held to the light. A nice light tan head is nested on top.

S: Some bread notes, as well as dark berries. Some raisons and a touch of roasted smell.

T: Sweet, with some ripe fruit and dark berry notes. Raisons and plums with some light grape notes. Some roasted notes in the finish. Just a touch of alcohol. Very nice, and surprisingly light.

M: Light in body, with a dry finish. The carbonation is fine in size, and strong in numbers. Effervescent, almost a touch too much..

O: Overall a very nice brew. Great fruity notes, meld with grain and classic belgian yeast characteristics.

 631 characters

Photo of GilGarp
4.3/5  rDev +8.3%
look: 4 | smell: 4 | taste: 4.5 | feel: 4 | overall: 4.5

Served in a large wine glass. On tap at Choice City in Fort Collins.

Mc Chouffe is a dark hazy brown color with thin head.

Aroma is mild and malty with a distinct and enjoyable yeast character.

Flavor is exceptional with great dried fruit and yeast esters. Raisins and figs with clove and a little pepper.

Mouthfeel is smooth but strong. Full bodied and nicely carbonated.

Overall a great beer, especially on tap.

 418 characters

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

Was excited to find this on the shelf in Mexico.

A: Poured a ruby//brown color, somewhat hazy, with a foamy tan head on top. Pretty good head retention, slowly dissipating to a thin layer of foam on top. Left some thick lacing on the glass.

S: Heavy amount of dark fruit - plum, fig and a little raisin, some caramelized malt and some Belgian yeast.

T: Rather spicy with some pepper and nutmeg to go along with a deep, dark fruit flavor. There is a bit of caramel mixed in as well with a slightly sweet finish.

M: Medium bodied with moderate carbonation, has a slightly creamy feel to it and a sticky finish.

O: Pretty good brew, not one of my favorites, but easy drinking with a good flavor profile.

 710 characters

McChouffe from Brasserie d'Achouffe
89 out of 100 based on 517 ratings.