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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: 134 | 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 fisherman34
3.5/5  rDev -11.8%
look: 3.5 | smell: 3.5 | taste: 3.5 | feel: 3.5 | overall: 3.5

Dark brown in colour with an off-white head. Lots of carbonation. Aromas of caramalized malt, yeast, and cut grass. The flavor is an odd combination of sweet malt and spritzy saison-like flavors (citrus, yeast, etc...). It tastes good, but still somewhat muddled. I couldn't detect any of the smoke flavors that you'd get from a beer influanced by the Scotch ale style.

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Photo of weeare138
3.79/5  rDev -4.5%
look: 5 | smell: 3.5 | taste: 4 | feel: 3.5 | overall: 3.5

Pours a deep chestnut with a four finger tan head that lasts. Nothing but huge sticky lacing clings all over the glass.
Smell is of lightly roasted malt with a hint of chocolate powder and lots of apple juice esters coming through with perhaps some other fruits hidden in the background of this earthy brew.
Taste is good. Belgian La Chouffe yeast is very evident in the taste with some semi sweetness coming through in an earthy taste with some caramel notes, figs, and apple juice being the biggest flavor picked up for some reason.
Mouthfeel is decent. A hint of spice in this slightly malty brew with a dry finish.

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

Poured into Watou chalice from 11.2 oz brown bottle. Liquid had a brown orange color, with sticky white head.

Smelled of funky yeast and bread. Not really the La Chouffe aroma though... Taste was really good anyway. Had a dubbel-type flavor, not too strong, nice.

La chouffe is one of my favorites, so I was happy to find this on sale in small bottles. They need to make more of these small bottles available (the big bottles are green and I don't trust them).

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Photo of OatherS
4.06/5  rDev +2.3%
look: 5 | smell: 4 | taste: 4 | feel: 4 | overall: 4

A big 75 cL bottle with a gnome on the front.

A: Pours a massive head that laces nicely. Clear brown color, very bubbly. Sounded like pouring champagne.

S: Floral and friuty aroma. Slight alcohol smell but not strong, just there.

T: Sweet but not overpowering almost pop like in the flavor and mouthfeel. Good taste.

M: Very smooth.

D: Something that should come in a six pack!!!!

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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 ypsifly
3.96/5  rDev -0.3%
look: 4.5 | smell: 3.5 | taste: 4 | feel: 4.5 | overall: 4

Undated 11.2oz poured into a chalice.

Deep, dark brown with a one finger head of big bubbles that is light tan and leaves a sheeet of lace opposite the side I'm drinking from.

Has a yeasty nose that has a note of clove, but its paired with an odd metallic odor. There's sugar and banana underneath, but its rather weak overall.

Creamy and malted upfront, with a suggestion of plums and currants. There's a slight tingle from the carbonation that's paired with some sourdough bread. Subtle spiceness rounds it out.

Creamy mouthfeel...I like it. Drinkable, but not all night.

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Photo of neonbrown82
4.37/5  rDev +10.1%
look: 4.5 | smell: 5 | taste: 4.5 | feel: 3 | overall: 4

Picked up this relatively new stock on recommendation from a fellow co-worker at John's Grocery. This fine Belgian pours out to a very dark plum color with a perfect foamy head that sticks around through the duration of the glass. Leaves a spotty and sticky lacing behind.

Smells absolutely stunning. Has that Belgian candi sugar trademark resting upon a massive malty base. Smells very phenolic, easily enticing one to take another drink.

The taste is a bit grainy, but it's backed up by a nice blend of candi sugar and a mild spicy hop. Reminds me a lot of St. B's Abt 12 or Westmalle dubbel. Very nice mix of flavors. The finish occasionally leaves a coppery taste in the mouth.

The mouthfeel seems to be a tiny bit weak to me, but this is obviously a forgivable trait for such a fine beer. It's a little bit creamy and grainy, but the body lacks oomph. The high alcohol content is very well hidden, however. Drinkability is good, all points considered.

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Photo of dgallina
3.33/5  rDev -16.1%
look: 3.5 | smell: 3 | taste: 3.5 | feel: 3 | overall: 3.5

Pours into the glass a slightly clouded dark brown. Creates a really large off-white head that subsides rapidly, but leaves moderate lacing. Smells sweetly grainy with vinous tones. Simple and uncomplicated in aroma and initial taste. Sugary and effervescent in the mouth, the beer develops a slightly smoky graininess as it warms. A touch of fruitiness comes forward before the dry and sparkling finish.

An unremarkable brown Belgian ale. Vague hints of complexity in an average and over-carbonated beer.

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Photo of jdhilt
3.76/5  rDev -5.3%
look: 4 | smell: 3 | taste: 4 | feel: 4 | overall: 4

Pours a light tan, two-finger head, fades slowly and leaves a good lace. Light carbonation and medium bodied. Cloudy amber color. Nose is slighty malty. Starts just on the sweet side, finishes mellow, better as it warms; label has the ABV at 8.5% but there is not a trace of alcohol. $8.90 for a 750ml bottle from Colonial Spirits Acton, MA.

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Photo of MrSeth
3.92/5  rDev -1.3%
look: 4 | smell: 4.5 | taste: 3.5 | feel: 4 | overall: 4

Pours an opaque dark brown cola color. A one inch tan head forms and stays alive for a good spell.

Lots of yeast and passion fruit in the nose. A slight bit musky.

The taste is a surprise.. toasty malt (like charcoal) with an almost roasted peanut flavor. Drier and lighter bodied than the nose would lead me to believe. It's not sweet at all.. this ale would be good for when you don't want another sweet Belgian Dark Ale, it's practically savory in character. Reminds me of soybeans and other earthy flavors.

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

Pours a deep dark burgandy red, which in the first pour is very clear, and has a big rocky beige head with good retention. Smell is hay, sour cherries, apples, pineapple, clove, pepper. Taste like biscuity malts upfront mixed with some sour cherries, with a spicy and flowery finish. Taste very crisp and dry and the palate is refreshed quickly after each sip. Not as complex as most of the Belgian ales I've been trying, but goes down very easily and would be great with a meal.

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

Dark bronzy brown with a generous infusion of orange when backlit. Clear initially, the beer becomes seriously murky when the final few ounces are added to the glass. Fast and furious carbonation results in a poofy head of semi-stiff foam that is toasted beige in color. Wandering wisps of watery lace decorate the glass; temporarily at least.

The aroma is a wonderful combination of sweetly floral hops and dark caramel-like malt, resulting in a whole greater than the sum of its parts. There isn't much yeasty spiciness; perhaps it's saving itself for the palate and letting the more mundane elements shoulder the load in the nose (yeast can be like that; little buggers).

McChouffe tastes like a Belgian brown ale (I think it's high time that style was recognized on this site). Of course that impression didn't hit me out of the blue. The beer itself, via the label, claims that it's a 'Belgian Brown Ale'. What that means to me is the flavor profile of an American or an English brown with the added depth and complexity of Belgian yeast.

The flavor consists of dark fruit (raisins, dates) sprinkled with cocoa powder. There's also an overarching floral hoppiness that ties it all up in a neat package. Finally is understated clove spice. All elements work together in a beautiful symphony of flavors. The beer is both sweet and sour through most of the mouthful, with a hoppy bitterness interceding on the back end. The light-medium mouthfeel is especially buoyant thanks to all the bubbles. No hint of alcohol, even at 8%.

McChouffe, no matter what style one chooses to call it, is a wonderful dark ale by brewers who clearly know how to brew great beer. It's a seamless melding of malt, hops and yeast that gives pleasure whether one attempts to tease out every flavor nuance or whether one wishes to simply drink and enjoy. A fine achievement.

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Photo of GCBrewingCo
3.73/5  rDev -6%
look: 4 | smell: 3.5 | taste: 3.5 | feel: 3.5 | overall: 4.5

The beer poured into the chalice clear deep amber with a white low and persistent head which lasted to lace the glass.

The aroma was slight Belgian farmhouse presence and very slight brett aroma. Behind that presence was a low caramel maltiness and light aroma of dark fruits, raisins and prunes. The farmhouse aroma was accentuated by a distinct earthiness.

The flavor was light, and very similar to the aroma. The beer contacted the palate with a slight caramel maltiness and light spice presence. The maltiness diminished quickly and became dark fruit flavors, once again raisins and prunes. The flavors were low and blended but the longer the flavors contacted the palate the more spicy the flavor became as it dried. Some candy flavors emerged as the beer warmed.

The finish was dry with lasting low belgian yeast spice and caramel maltiness long into the aftertaste. The body was just above medium and the carbonation was fairly high making it seem less. Definitely a beer best consumed at cellar temps to take advantage of all the aroma and flavor have to offer. The alcohol was really only present in the warming sensation after consumption.

750 ml green silk screened crown capped bottle. Best before end 2006 on bottle. Purchased at Total Wine in Chesapeake, VA.

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Photo of cypressbob
4.3/5  rDev +8.3%
look: 4.5 | smell: 4.5 | taste: 4.5 | feel: 3.5 | overall: 4

750ml bottle, capped

Pours with a dark burgandy body, up to the light some hints of ruby red. Quite hazy, pretty nice off tan head, good retention

Smell, some dried fruit, quite estery. Fresh fruit, melon and pineapple. Little hint of spice, clove and cinnamon

Taste, crisp and biscuity. Not overly powerful, some hint of spice and dried fruit. Bourbon biscuits, mabye raisins too.

Whoa, an eclectic and gratifying experience. A much more subtle dark ale, but filled with flavour and complexity. Dont expect serious, abrasive flavours, this is no rochefort 10, but it is a great belgian brown ale

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

Pours a deep brown with some reddish tint with a nice fluffy head,big fruity aromas along with some yeasty-like spiciness.I picked up some sour cherry up front along with some caramel and some spiciness coming in in pretty ubrupt finish.A real solid brew not overly spectacular but had nice strong dark ale characteristics a pleasure to drink.

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Photo of Globetrotter
4.05/5  rDev +2%
look: 4 | smell: 4 | taste: 4 | feel: 3.5 | overall: 4.5

Stumbled upon a lone bottle of this in Moscow's fanciest supermarket - Hello! Brown 750ml wine bottle with a multi-colored label featuring what looks like a long-bearded dwarf or leprechan gazing lovingly at a sign showing a chalice of the brew. The label was in French and Dutch (no Russian import label - hmm...), but I couldn't discern any ingredient information. Best before 2007, I popped the cap on 3/20/05.

Pours a clear dark ruby red under a 1.5 finger beige head that settles ever so slowly but leaves only a few wisps of lace on the glass. Little disappointed in the visual experience. The second pour was a bit cloudier, but the head was thinner. The nose features mild apricot and malt. The mouth is very prickly and quite light when cold, but getting heavier as the beer warmed. The tastebuds first experience a mild, soft-spoken sensation that hides the alcoho9l content extremely well. A fine bready malt underlies a light fruity bouquet of plum and grape - more sweet than sour, but not very sweet, either - just present. The malt became much more obvious as the brew warmed, essentially burying the fruit by the last sip of the second pour. Hops are also present, adding a nice dryness and a hint of bitter in the finish. I could see enjoying this more than once, as the complexity and taste change so radically with temperature variations. Definitely worth more than just a dabble.

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

I had this out of a 11.2 oz brown bottle and served in a St. Feuillien wide mouthed glass. Best before the end of 2006 clearly marked on the side of the glass.

Appearance lends itself to a dark and hazy brown color. Nice head on top that turns into a thin lacing that leaves various sticky lacing marks all over the glass.

Aroma is spicy with sweetness and raw yeast.

Taste is very smooth, malt heavy with a spicy yeast presence. Flavors of plums or raisins dipped in caramel. Nice level of carbonation that makes this very drinkable at 8.5 % ABV.

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Photo of Quaffer
3.83/5  rDev -3.5%
look: 4 | smell: 3.5 | taste: 4 | feel: 3.5 | overall: 4

25.4 oz. bottle. Picked this up in KC, MO. Not available here in Wichita.

Appearance: This was a deep, red beer that showed amber highlights around the edges when backlit. The off-white head rose up easily to two fingers and settled down quickly. A layer of bubbles remained for the entire time due to the heavy bead. There was a very light amount of lace left behind.

Smell: Yeast, some spicy alcohol, and spicy hops contributed to the aroma. The strongest smell, especially right after the pour, was that of sweet, candy-like cherry. It became more balanced as the beer sat for awhile, though.

Mouthfeel: Very lively mouthfeel. The carbonation really jumped out, but didn't make the beer rough. It gave it more of that fluffy, fuzzy feel. Light-bodied, but a little chewy at times.

Taste: Light sweet caramel and toffee upfront. Tart cherries rose up strong in the middle. The beer quickly dried out on the finish, where a nice does of spicy hops and alcohol kicked in. The alcohol contributed nicely without being overbearing.

An enjoyable, straightforward beer.

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

Got this as a gift. Pours dark with a somewhat frothy head that stays a bit before settling. Nice carbonation without being overbearing. Lots of caramel, raisons, earthiness. Slight hoppiness, lots of malts. Real nice. Packs a punch at over 8 percent alcohol without tasting like medicine. Lots better if allowed to warm a bit. Great Winter warmer.

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

Pours deep in color with red tints. A thick head formed at first but completely dissolved. The aroma is sugar-coated grapes and slightly of hops. The taste came across as as smooth malts, with a slight hop bite to it. I am also picking up more raisin, and slightly under-ripe melon. The mouthfeel is thick on both the palate and in the stomach. I ahrdly notice any of the 8% ABV. An interesting beer, but not something I may neccesarily hunt for again.

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Photo of kmpitz2
4.15/5  rDev +4.5%
look: 4 | smell: 4 | taste: 4 | feel: 4.5 | overall: 4.5

This was left after a tasting at my house. Best before end 07. Tihs pours a slightly ambered brown color with a billowing 4.5 finger head that falls to gererously coat the beer. The nose is malty, with some roasted and some slight sweet raisin tones along with some peppery tones. I like the flavor. There are raisin tones, but they are creamy. Slight pepperyness comes through as well. the feel is thick, with very nice creamy texture. The carb is nice and light. I enjoy this one a lot. The flavors are very mellow and meld together well. I like this beer.

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Photo of carln26
4.15/5  rDev +4.5%
look: 4 | smell: 4 | taste: 4.5 | feel: 4.5 | overall: 3.5

I'd had this on-tap before, and was mildly dissapointed. This bottle conditioned version was a nice surprise. Deep brown color with copper high lights, it pours from the bottle slightly hazy with a thick rich cream colored head, and leaves lodes of lace down the side of the glass as the beer settles form the pour. The nose has a nice yeasty bread character along with ribbon candy from the malt and a mild hop flower aroma. The taste has the bread character present in the aroma along with malt sweetness. The hops do not carry over like I had expected. There is more fruit in the flavor profile on the finish. The mouth feel is fuller, smoother than I caught from the draft version. It’s also less “boozier” than I remembered the draft version to be, there for, more drinkable. This has definitely frown on me.

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Photo of bigbubba
4.08/5  rDev +2.8%
look: 4.5 | smell: 4 | taste: 4.5 | feel: 3.5 | overall: 3.5

This beer has a nice dark reddish amber color with a thick foamy tan head. Lots of tiny bubbles racing to the top. It has a strong Belgian aroma, very spicy and yeasty with a slight musty or earthy tone. The flavor is great, very fruity but not too sweet. The mouthfeel is a little thin for my taste in an 8% beer, but for this style it's probably about normal. Drinkability is ok, but I think I'd have a hell of a headache if I spent the night drinking these.

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

Reviewed from a capped 750ml bottle on 12-28-04. Pours out a reddish brown color with a tall bubbly tan head. Decent lacing was left decorating the glass. Aroma is fruity, with notes of apples and other fruits. There was a bit of sweetness and also a good bit of spicy hops. Taste starts off a bit fruity sweet with various fruit flavors melding together. There is a decent bit of spiciness to it and some hop bitterness. Finishes on a spicy sweet note that lingers a bit. Body was about medium with a creamy smooth feel to it. Fairly easy drinking and tasty this is a solid beer. Not my favorite for the style by any means but a good beer no doubt.

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Photo of RootedFool
4.45/5  rDev +12.1%
look: 4.5 | smell: 4.5 | taste: 4.5 | feel: 4 | overall: 4.5

1 PT. 9.4 FL OZ bottle purchased at The North Coast Co-op in Eureka, California.

Let's raise the roof, shall we?

An enormous head on the pour, bubbly and dense, dark tan. The body is a flat, opaque mahogany. Looks lovely in my Maudite pimp goblet. A few thin sheets of lace hold to the glass.


Sinus-evacuating waft of alcohol warmth, qualified by an effusion of freshly sliced green apples, plums, grapefruit rinds, with a peppery finish.


Opens with a round roll of butter around the base of my palate, warm and embracing, followed by an elevated twist of puckering spiciness -- black pepper corns, citrus rinds. Toward the finish the hop twang becomes very pronounced. The most hoppiness I've ever tasted in a dark Belgian ale. Aftertaste is a palate-tip tinglin' hoe down, and a background of fading fruit cake sweetness and spice.

Perfect amount of carbonation, most evident toward the middle as it helps the hops sizzle into the forefront.

The mouthfeel could be richer, feels a tad thin.

Overall, this brew raised the roof.
My hands are in the air, like I just don't care.
This beer is so tasty I feel like a bear
screaming ZAP, BANG, POW.
McChouffe in the hizz-owwzz!

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