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La Chouffe - Brasserie d'Achouffe

Not Rated.
La ChouffeLa Chouffe

Displayed for educational use only; do not reuse.
BA SCORE
94
outstanding

1,908 Ratings
THE BROS
99
world-class

(view ratings)
Ratings: 1,908
Reviews: 812
rAvg: 4.2
pDev: 10.71%
Wants: 124
Gots: 191 | FT: 0
Brewed by:
Brasserie d'Achouffe visit their website
Belgium

Style | ABV
Belgian Strong Pale Ale |  8.00% ABV

Availability: Year-round

Notes/Commercial Description:
No notes at this time.

(Beer added by: BeerAdvocate on 10-24-2001)
Beer: Ratings & Reviews
Sort by:  Usefulness | Recent | High | Low | Top Raters | Read the Alström Bros Beer Reviews and Beer Ratings of La Chouffe Alström Bros
Ratings: 1,908 | Reviews: 812 | Display Reviews Only:
Photo of detlefchef
4.8/5  rDev +14.3%
look: 4 | smell: 5 | taste: 5 | feel: 4.5 | overall: 4.5

Poured from a 750, opened yesterday and capped with champagne stopper.

Brownish orange color that is nearly brilliant with light and fine foam that easily reappears and lingers with a swirl.

Aromas of cinnamon, brown sugar, and guayabana (really, really pretty).

The warm, brown sugar elements just keep coming on the palate. Really ripe and soothing with lingering pie spice and roasted pears. Clean without being bright on the finish and I keep going back for more.

A truly delicious beer.

Pair with:
Roasted pork loin with dried fruit and spices.

detlefchef, Jul 29, 2010
Photo of Jeffo
3.88/5  rDev -7.6%
look: 3.5 | smell: 4 | taste: 4 | feel: 3 | overall: 4

Got this at the bottle shop down thr road.

From a 33cl stubby bottle into a tulip.

APPEARANCE: Pours a three finger, fluffy looking white head that quickly fades to a thin wisp and leaves some immediate lacing down the glass. Color is a cloudy carrot orange with higher levels or carbonation evident. Wisp remains and leaves some nice lacing down the glass.

SMELL: Pale and toasted malts in the nose. A bit of orange peel, green fruits, such as apple and pear, as well as some mild spicy notes.

TASTE: Toasted malts, pale malts, and some green fruits, mostly green apple and pear again. Spicy yeast, with some pepper and coriander as well. Touches of floral notes in the back. A relatively mild and shorter aftertaste is sweet and spicy with a dry finish.

PALATE: Medium-light body with higher amounts of carbonation. A little less creamy than hoped, but goes down smooth, no bite, and finishes rather dry on the palate. Could be a little creamier, but fine non-the-less.

OVERALL: A very solid strong pale ale. The flavors and aromas could have been a little bolder, and the palate a little creamier, but this was a very solid effort for sure, and one I wouldn't hesitate to have again.

Jeffo, Jul 21, 2010
Photo of yesyouam
4.38/5  rDev +4.3%
look: 4 | smell: 4 | taste: 4.5 | feel: 4.5 | overall: 4.5

La Chouffe is a super lively, slightly hazy golden with lots of floaters. It has a huge, fluffy, white head that has outstanding retention and lacing. It has a warm aroma of spice, fruit, bread and phenol. It's pretty light bodied and very smooth. The finish is clean, dry and delicate. Wow, it tastes fruity! I detect apple, pear, peach, cherry and maybe some dried fruit. The finish is earthy, leathery, peppery and phenolic. This beer is a treat! This would be just as appropriate on a hot summer day or a cold winter night.

yesyouam, Jul 18, 2010
Photo of donniecuffs
4.33/5  rDev +3.1%
look: 4 | smell: 4.5 | taste: 4.5 | feel: 4 | overall: 4

Into a tulip glass, poured a cloudy golden-yellow, with two fingers of white head; great retention and lacing. Smelled of coriander orange peel, bubble gum, sugar, and apricot. The taste revealed all of the above, with an excellent sense of balance, dissolving to an apricot/peel finish. Medium-bodied and more carbonated than expected; made for a nice sensation. Great beer.

donniecuffs, Jul 16, 2010
Photo of bbkd3b
4.18/5  rDev -0.5%
look: 3.5 | smell: 4.5 | taste: 4 | feel: 4 | overall: 4.5

Poured from a 12 oz. bottle into a Maredsous glass.

A - Looks like orange juice mixed with ice tea. Foggy, orange-gold. All types of sediment floating around this beer. 1-finger white head with decent retention. Surprisingly little lacing considering the carbonation.

S - Yeast, sugar cane, grainy spices. Overall very pleasant and inviting. Smallest hint of citrus, as well... Orange peel, I guess.

T - Spice notes right away. Hint of pepper, with heavy yeast. Most prominent though were the sour fruits. Orange and lemon. Very dry finish. Another good tasting Belgian. Well-done.

M - Really heavy carbonation almost attacks the tongue. The body is lighter, and when it hits the stomach, it's very warming.

D - Bought only one, wish I had another. I could just drink and drink and drink...

Overall/notes: I love my Belgian beers, and this is another well-executed one. Perhaps not on the same level as Duvel, but jeez, I won't hold that against it. Drinking this was a good, enjoyable experience.

bbkd3b, Jul 16, 2010
Photo of ryanonline
4.15/5  rDev -1.2%
look: 5 | smell: 4.5 | taste: 4 | feel: 4 | overall: 4

Appears very bright straw gold, moderately hazy. The pour leaves a big white head and awesome lacing.

Wonderfully sweet and spicy scent. A bit of caramel malt scent with some light coriander too.

Lemony taste, even grassy, lots of caramel sweetness. Still a light presence of coriander. Bitter finish.

Thin and foamy, dry finish.

A bit filling.

Yummy. This beer is a feast fir the eyes and nose as well as the mouth. I think I had their Christmas beer and I liked it a lot as well.

ryanonline, Jun 28, 2010
Photo of CHickman
3.55/5  rDev -15.5%
look: 3.5 | smell: 4 | taste: 3.5 | feel: 4 | overall: 3

Pours a cloudy gold orange color with a creamy 2 finger off white head that looks cloudy and lasted a while; a lot of sediment floating in the beer, which looked like salt water.

Smells of yeast, spices, coriander, orange peel, pineapple, floral hops, grass, pepper and some light banana and clove; a really nice smelling beer with a diverse nose.

Tastes sweet and tart up front, like a grapefruit, lemon or sour apple, followed by malt sweetness, yeast, pepper, clove, brown sugar, spices like cinnamon or allspice, herbs, caramel or candy sugar; the end was a mix of orange peel, citrus hops, hop spices and light grains that had a metallic hint, like a penny. The spices like coriander and the alcohol are present, but this taste does not live up to the aroma and is a little disappointing to me. This does not taste bad, but it's just on the basic side of the flavor spectrum which might be true to the Belgian Strong Pale Ale style, but a far cry from what I expected. Again, this does not taste bad, and is a pretty good beer, but not as good as I expected it too taste. The herbs like tea leaf and light alcohol bite add balance.

Mouthfeel is creamy and smooth, with very mild carbonation, a medium body and an easy flow for a beer that has 8% ABV. A tasty Belgian treat that was funky, spicy and tasty, everything a good Belgian beer should be. This really flows down easy

Drinkability is OK to god, as this brew has all of the makings of a really great beer but comes up litte short in flavor.

CHickman, Jun 17, 2010
Photo of irishking1977
3.45/5  rDev -17.9%
look: 4.5 | smell: 3.5 | taste: 3.5 | feel: 3.5 | overall: 3

A: Rusty gold with a massive, white pillowy head that slowly recedes leaving an abundance of lacing. Nearly rivals the appearance of Duvel.

S: Spice, a bit of pineapple, apple, pear yeast and candi sugar. I've only had this once prior to this review, and I don't recall any of this.

T: Tart, spicy and sweet, with a mild yeasty twang in the finish. The twang seems to wear thin after awhile. The one thing I do recall the only other time I've had this, was that it was very easy to drink, but unremarkable. This time around, it's still easy relatively to drink, with more of a kick. Still, not as complex as some BSA's, but more so than I found it to be the first time I had it.

M:Slick and smooth, with a mild bite in the finish. Less than average carbonation, which is somewhat of a detractor; I like my beers well carbonated. Doesn't hurt the beer's flavor too much, but could affect the drinkability slightly.

D: A relatively robust 8% ABV will almost certainly hurt drinkability of any beer. But the yeasty finish, more commonly found in Saisons and farmhouse ales, also hurts the drinkabilty. This is a sipper, for sure, but also not as great as most folks think. Not bad, but there are superior BSA's out there in comparison to this one. (Delirium Tremens, Duvel, Don De Dieu to name a few)

irishking1977, Jun 13, 2010
Photo of dgilks
4.33/5  rDev +3.1%
look: 4 | smell: 4.5 | taste: 4.5 | feel: 4 | overall: 4

Big, spicy, fruity aroma with notes of clove and apple. Very nice.

Reasonably clear, golden colour with a big, fluffy, long-lasting white head. Nice lacing.

Wonderful clean malt profile which showcases the spicy, peppery yeast. Good fruit notes as well. I prefer this to Duvel.

Light, spritzy, refreshing mouthfeel.

A very easy to drink beer. Lots of flavour and I certainly don't notice the 8% alcohol.

dgilks, Jun 12, 2010
Photo of Jemonster
3.03/5  rDev -27.9%
look: 3 | smell: 2.5 | taste: 3.5 | feel: 3 | overall: 2.5

This was actually the first beer that I rated on BA right after I really got into craft beers. That said, my palate has changed and now I look for different characteristics in a beer. Long story short, I thought I would give this beer another shot since so many people apparently think that it actually is awesome and brewed by mushroom-hut dwelling gnomes in the Belgian forests. My original review follows the new one.

A: Clover honey colored and murky appearance with no discernible head. In a large red wine glass, I cannot look through the beer and detect my hand passing on the other side.

S: Faint but sweet scent, kind of like Christmastime with the spices. Nothing else really there for me.

T: Upfront sweetness and mulled cider-like spices. Slight bitterness lingers in the aftertaste. Kind of malty like malted milk. I would imagine this beer might benefit from the addition of citrus to create some action on the tongue, although I'm not the type to add anything to my beer because I like it to express itself. If this beer were to be drank socially on someone elses terms, I just might throw in some lemon.

M: Creamy and slightly heavy without much carbonation. Falls kind of flat on my tongue with nothing to pop out the flavors. This beer actually makes me thirsty.

D: I still can't really drink this beer. It is too sweet and flat, and I'm having trouble drinking it as I finish this review.

In conclusion, I wanted to like this beer but I just don't see what everyone else sees in it. It's like when cute girls go for that a--hole who's a wanna be bad boy and not even good looking. Maybe this beer is just not my style. I want it to have something it doesn't and I can't seem to enjoy it for what it is.

---
My original review:

A: This beer poured a golden/very light amber from its bottle into a stein. Semi long lasting head that coats the glass as the beer is consumed. The head is a silky looking off white; it has a mild sheen. The most remarkable characteristic about this beer is the heavy sediment in the bottom of the glass. I would call this interesting, but not a selling point for me, as I prefer my drinks smooth...
S: The smell is sweet and mildly fruity, I can't pick out any distinguishing scents that stand out. The smell seems well balanced as far as flavors go.
T: This beer is somewhat strong with a spicy beginning. It has a fruity sweetness and a strong hop bitterness right after the beginning. The aftertaste lingers for a while and remains bitter for the finish.
M: This beer has a malty texture that is more viscous than most beers I have tried. The sticky feel probably helps contribute to the bitterness at the end.
D: I don't think I could drink much of this if I tried and I had a hard time actually drinking a pint of this. It is heavy in a way, but not in a good way like a stout...and that lingering bitterness and sediment at the end just turns me off.

Overall, in my opinion, this beer is overrated. It's average to me. I wouldn't buy it again, especially for $10 for the 25oz bottle.

Jemonster, Jun 10, 2010
Photo of misinformed
3.53/5  rDev -16%
look: 4 | smell: 3.5 | taste: 3.5 | feel: 4.5 | overall: 3

750 ml bottle in a snifter.

A- First pour was clear golden orange, with sediment in the later pour. Very light visible carbonation. Puffy white, two finger head that settled down to a thick coat that stuck around until the end. Thick lacing as well.

S- Sweet, yeast, light citrus. Some faint alcohol.

T- Similar to smell. Yeast and grain/bread stand out to me at first then it finishes with a very mild coriander/spice finish as well as the grain.

M- Medium bodied, but not syrupy. Smooth and mildly creamy, but I didn't find it very carbonated.

D- Well balanced and smooth. Nice representation of the style. I wouldn't of known the coriander was added if it wasn't on the bottle, but the spice notes were there. I would drink it again, but not something I would pick up often.

misinformed, Jun 08, 2010
Photo of Japerrault
4.15/5  rDev -1.2%
look: 4 | smell: 4 | taste: 4 | feel: 4.5 | overall: 4.5

A: Hazy golden ale with a thick creamy white head. Nice lacing.

S: Sweet malts, bananna, lemon

T: Sweet, Malty, lemony, some faint grain in the back. Light on hops flavor and bitterness.

M: Medium full body, creamy, nice carbonation

D: Smooth, light flavors, nothing harsh. Easy drinking.

Japerrault, Jun 01, 2010
Photo of gatornation
4.33/5  rDev +3.1%
look: 4 | smell: 4 | taste: 4.5 | feel: 4 | overall: 4.5

pours a hazy golden well carbonated ale color with a billowing pure white head that does settle to a very white nice ring..the smell is floral and spicy with coriander,lemon pepper and some musty peat smells throw in some apples and pears its a bouquet of fruit..the taste is the same and more it has the yeast taste followed by bananas and apples with pepper and citrus really well balanced and a delight to drink on a warm spring day..the mouth feel is perfect medium well carbonated and just right on the taste buds..this is a real drinkable..cheers to the chouffes (gnomes)..a beautiful BSPA

gatornation, May 16, 2010
Photo of chaz01
3.65/5  rDev -13.1%
look: 3.5 | smell: 3.5 | taste: 3.5 | feel: 4 | overall: 4

On tap at Chappy's Tap Room in Dayton. Served in a snifter glass.

A: Golden murky color, thin head produces a collar around the edge of the glass that sticks around a while.

S: Floral aroma with noticeable belgian yeast characteristics.

T: Banana and more belgian yeast flavors. Fruity flavors including apples and pears with some spice notes (presumably coriander).

M: Medium bodied, nicely carbonated and effervescent, spicy yeast flavors in the aftertaste.

D: Decent Belgian beer, but it didn't stand out to me as anything being very distinctive or outstanding. Somewhat light and refreshing despite the 8% ABV.

chaz01, May 16, 2010
Photo of xylophonica
4.68/5  rDev +11.4%
look: 4.5 | smell: 4 | taste: 5 | feel: 5 | overall: 4.5

Poured from a 75cl bottle into a tulip glass.

A - Nice golden amber with about 2 fingers of head. A few carbonation bubbles present as well. Lacing up there with the best (possibly due to the sugar).

S - Sweet and herbal (coriander, basil & sage most prominent). Some malt. Hint of cut grass as well.

T - Spicy and herbal. Sweet malty taste offset by the herbs. Should probably cite coriander here but that's pretty obvious given it's listed in the ingredients. Slight phenolic hit. Aftertaste is quite soothing. Some citrus and hoppy tones join the party later.

M - Spicy and bitey. Bitter & creamy at the same time! Almost leaves your mouth tingling but then the malt settles - you keep savouring this taste after it's gone. Some beers will leave you with a creamy feel that destroys the taste and makes it bland, but real ales should have a body and this is as good as it gets.

D - I know the alcohol content will come back to bite me but I just want to keep drinking.. Superb.

Since I first joined this website this is probably the one beer I'd been most anxious to review. It has not disappointed. This is how a proper ale should taste. I often think the Reinheitsgebot is keeping some German beers from being truly great. No such problem for the Belgians, they can use whatever ingredients they want. And more power to them!
Will be paying a visit to this brewery later this year.. can I review this same beer on tap as well?!?!

xylophonica, May 08, 2010
Photo of beersheppard
4.28/5  rDev +1.9%
look: 5 | smell: 3 | taste: 4.5 | feel: 4 | overall: 5

Appearance: in true great Belgian style it jumped out of the bottle, cloudy, chunky, gold, with pillowy white head.

Smell: musty, minerally, grassy.

Taste: great malt sweetness tempered with spicy citrus hops.

Mouthfeel: carbonated and full.

Drinkability: I think the key is balanance here. Harmony between the hops and the malt. I could drink this all day long.

beersheppard, May 07, 2010
Photo of AgentZero
3.18/5  rDev -24.3%
look: 3.5 | smell: 3.5 | taste: 3 | feel: 3.5 | overall: 3

A - Hazy golden color with a fairly large white head on it.

S - Bit of funk, floral and grassy notes. It's fairly spiced an belgiany yeast smelling.

T - Can't say I am a huge fan of this one. It's pretty dry, not bad in and of itself, with some phenol kick and a somewhat sourish grassy tasting belgiany type yeast flavor. There's definately fruit present, but it's just not quite sweet enough for this beer.

M - Lighter side of medium bodied, pretty carbonated.

D - Drank a decent amount of it, but couldn't finish the entire bottle. Unusual for me when I drink.

AgentZero, May 05, 2010
Photo of Jesstyr
3.63/5  rDev -13.6%
look: 4 | smell: 4 | taste: 3.5 | feel: 3.5 | overall: 3.5

Poured into a pint glass at Ginger Man in South Norwalk, paired with fried calamari.

Pours bright golden yellow, very clear, with significant lacing throughout the drink. Huge foamy white head that dissipates quick, and disappears completely. Nose is interesting complex - I get some white wine type qualities. Subtle earthiness as well, but all this creates diversity, yet not necessarily enjoyable.

Taste is much like the nose, but with more hoppy bitterness. Light medium body, somewhat refreshing, but carbonation is a bit too prevalent, and doesnt support the flavor. Alcohol is well hidden, and definitely a crisp beer for the ABV.

Jesstyr, May 02, 2010
Photo of pzrhsau
4.5/5  rDev +7.1%
look: 4.5 | smell: 4.5 | taste: 4.5 | feel: 4.5 | overall: 4.5

Appearance: nice cloudy golden color with a huge silky head.
Smell: Very good malt scent coupled with spices and a hint of hops.
Taste: Nice crisp refreshing flavor but still carries a very strong sweetness and spiciness. A tap hoppier than i expect from most Belgian Ales but overall quite delicious.
Drinkability and Mouthfeel: Easy on the Palate while packing a huge amount of flavor. Great carbonation and very refreshing.

pzrhsau, Apr 30, 2010
Photo of metter98
4.3/5  rDev +2.4%
look: 3.5 | smell: 4.5 | taste: 4.5 | feel: 4 | overall: 4

A: It poured clear light yellow into a snifter glass with a large, white foamy head. A moderate level of carbonation is evident from the rising bubbles.
S: The nose has some funky citrusy, floral and sour aromas. It's not quite what you would expect from a typical saison.
T: Orangey flavors really stand out in the taste, along with some notes of spices.
M: It feels medium-bodied on the palate and very smooth from the level of carbonation.
D: This beer is a good sipper yet is also refreshing at the same time.

metter98, Apr 29, 2010
Photo of BeerNemesis
4.47/5  rDev +6.4%
look: 4 | smell: 4.5 | taste: 4.5 | feel: 4.5 | overall: 4.5

La Chouffe | 750 ml. | 8.0% ABV

Brewer: Brasserie d'Achouffe
Style: Belgian Strong Pale Ale

Appearance:
Pours a turgid golden poppy with a blossoming, rocky white cap that never fully recedes.

Aroma:
Faint citrus, light yeast, and a touch of spicy hops fill the nose. Aromatics that smack of tropical fruit make a late entrance.

Taste:
Dry pale malt with a complex but tempered spicy character of clove, cinnamon, and a tinge of black pepper that melts into a juicy light fruit background of peach, apple, and pineapple. Warming phenols break free at the very end leaving behind a trial of spice and a mildly alcoholic aftertaste that is equal parts peppery and sweet. There's a restrained vibrance that makes this not only pleasant but also continually exciting to quaff. Best served around 55°.

Mouthfeel:
Light-bodied with an effervescent mouthfeel. It's smooth but not slippery. Close to perfect.

Harmony:
There's something fantastic about how the cinnamon / pepper spiciness, lightly toasted malt, and exotic fruit medley combines in a subtle, subdued, and complex weave. I am content.

Thanks to Jian for sharing this bottle!

BeerNemesis, Apr 25, 2010
Photo of emsroth
3.4/5  rDev -19%
look: 4 | smell: 4 | taste: 3 | feel: 3.5 | overall: 3.5

12oz bottle

Yeast poured in

App: Dark honey amber that's super cloudy. Big fluffy head with wonderful lace.

Smell: Wonderfully complex smell. Sweet and sour grapes, tart tropical fruit, funky zest, slight malty undertones.

Taste: A rather subtle flavor. Starts with a STRONG carbonation bite. A slight fruity sweetness followed by a cereal graininess. Definite flavors of peach cobbler. Ends with an herbal bitterness.

I'm starting to learn that I think I like the zestyness of the american interpretation of belgian beers rather than the originals.

emsroth, Apr 23, 2010
Photo of Seanstoppable
4.15/5  rDev -1.2%
look: 4 | smell: 4 | taste: 4 | feel: 4.5 | overall: 4.5

Picked this up from a friend. Given the size of the bottle, I had been hesitant to open it up on just any day. Finally popped it open for a beer dinner paired with Salmon.

Pours a cloudy golden color with a decent finger of head. Head retention is quite good, with nice lacing left on the glass.

Smell is of some minor spice and yeast.

Taste consists of some citrus notes, some yeast, some minor malt and a hint of spice. Very balanced, smooth and easy to drink.

Overall, really went well with the meal. Some of my guests are more fans of wine than beer, but also enjoyed the beverage. Very unfortunate that these bottles are hard to come by where I am.

Seanstoppable, Apr 23, 2010
Photo of roddwolff
4.15/5  rDev -1.2%
look: 4.5 | smell: 4 | taste: 4.5 | feel: 4 | overall: 3.5

Second with David "The Gnome" i drink, but this time is blonde, served in a tulip glass "Duvel". Looks: Orange amber color, thick head of long-lasting foam, very good lacing, many sediments. Smell: Floral hops, coriander and sugars. Taste: Biscuity malts, pine and floral hops, coriander and sugar glass, pretty much like the smell. Mouthfeel: Dry, extra bitter with a bittersweet finish, robust and thick body, hardly feels its 8 degrees of alcohol. Drinkability: Very good beer with coriander and sugar, i enjoyed a lot with fillet fish.

roddwolff, Mar 18, 2010
Photo of Brabander
4.22/5  rDev +0.5%
look: 4 | smell: 4 | taste: 4.5 | feel: 4 | overall: 4

Had this beer on tap in a hotel in Holland. This was the beer of the month and man is was a very nice beer. Drank it in the original tulip shaped glass. A nice goldenyellow colour with a nice head of approx. one centimeter. After a short while the head dissapears.

The taste is actually very good. A bit of spice and a full aroma of orange and other fruits. Far away the yeast is there.

It was a pleasure to drink this beer. Reasonable carbonation with a good mouthfeel.

Brabander, Mar 17, 2010
La Chouffe from Brasserie d'Achouffe
94 out of 100 based on 1,908 ratings.