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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

1,962 Ratings
THE BROS
99
world-class

(view ratings)
Ratings: 1,962
Reviews: 816
rAvg: 4.2
pDev: 10.71%
Wants: 128
Gots: 205 | 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
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Ratings: 1,962 | Reviews: 816 | Display Reviews Only:
Photo of allergictomacros
4.85/5  rDev +15.5%
look: 5 | smell: 5 | taste: 5 | feel: 4.5 | overall: 4.5

A - Big green bottle. Best before 2008. Hazy orange with specs of floaties. Huge rocky head leaving patchy lace.

S - Yeasty and spicy with citrusy undertones. Slightly medicinal and alcoholic, but by no means "boozy". Slightly musty as well, as it warms.

T - First up, bread and butter. Grapefruit and tangerine comes in next. A touch of bitterness shows up as well, with the grapefruit. Finish is a mild bitterness than lingers along with spiciness.

M - Slick and syrupy. Finishes very dry.

D - Very good.

Edit: After putting the rest of the bottle in w/ yeast, it's (not surprisingly) much more opaque. Mouthfeel is much fuller and taste sweeter and mellower, and the problem with floaties has gone away. Seems to be more warming as well (that could be because I've had half the bottle though...) I would recommend having this one with the yeast in, after carefully pouring most of the bottle and doing the "swirling the lees around" trick to dissolve the floaties.

allergictomacros, May 22, 2006
Photo of RBorsato
4.55/5  rDev +8.3%
look: 4.5 | smell: 4.5 | taste: 4.5 | feel: 4 | overall: 5

Tasted on-tap on 03/09/06 at Monk's Cafe in Philadelphia, PA.

Nice golden color and white head with active carbonation. A very spicy (coriander and pepper-ish qualities) Belgian in both aroma and flavor. Refreshing airy and zesty overall with lots of yeasty character and spicy earthy Saaz(?) hop character. Very nice on draft; looking forward to tasting the bottled version.

Per BdA: 8% ABV. OG 16 °P.

RBorsato, May 18, 2006
Photo of soultrain
4/5  rDev -4.8%
look: 4 | smell: 3.5 | taste: 4 | feel: 4 | overall: 4.5

Poured into a Duvel tulip.

A-Cloudy golden color with signifigant yeast chunks whirling about. 3/4" head settles to 1/4" foam, lacing is crawling UP the glass...
S-Hmmm. Smells just like the Einbecker Mai-Ur-Bock i recently reviewed. This is brewed with spices? I detect only sweet malts.
T-"Typical" Belgian Strong Ale taste, though more modest in flavor (compared to Duvel or Piraat), dryish finish. Nothing "eccentric" (as the bottle proclaims) about it. I thought this would be more interesting; it's solid, but where are the spices? Sam Adam's Winter Lager has more spice content than this. Guess I was expecting Duvel with spices or something. Still, I wish I had bought the big bottle instead of the 12 oz. sampler: the belgian yeast is delish and I'm thirsty!
M-Good carbonation, good body, it ain't Duvel, but what is?
D-Undetectable alcohol, strong quaffability.

CRUX: SOLID BELGIAN STRONG ALE, but I don't know, I expected something different I guess, with the bottle littered with words like "artisanal," "mysterious," "brewed with spice,"...i don't know, I think the damn gnome lied to me. Now if they would have said, "Solid Belgian Strong Ale," I would have been like, great! Good beer, though....sessionable, even...like a Duvel lite! I prefer their triple IPA Houblin to this.

soultrain, May 15, 2006
Photo of pootz
3.9/5  rDev -7.1%
look: 4 | smell: 4 | taste: 4 | feel: 4 | overall: 3.5

1 liter bottle from Kensington. Shared this with friends over a wild pheasant dinner...a perfect compliment.

Poured a orange-tan color with a fluffy cap that stacked in the glass. Active effervesence. Aromas of sweet malts spice, citrus and some must. Great malt spine, soft mouth feel. Great whack of sweet malts up front is balanced by the medicinal spiciness of the hops and cinnamon/corriander...citrus peel. Wet finish with a tart after taste. A great ale.

pootz, May 06, 2006
Photo of Tupperwolf
3.48/5  rDev -17.1%
look: 4.5 | smell: 3.5 | taste: 3 | feel: 4 | overall: 4

Pours from a large-capped 750ml bottle a nice light straw gold, nice and clear as the first pour should be, with a glorious tulip-filling head. It falls over the course of a few minutes to a half-centimeter white covering while I let the beer warm and breathe, leaving behind a lovely perimiter of Brussels lace in its wake. Rising bubbles are easily visible keeping the head alive.

A nice, light Belgian yeast spice is prominent in the nose, a la' Duvel; A soft, creamy maltiness and very light hoppiness is present. All of the basic components are in place! No alcohol to be found in the scent, and it's inviting in a light, creamy spice kind of way that begs you to drink.

Now, the flavor is definitely good... It's got all of the right components. Creamy, slightly honeyish and wheaty malts - gentle Belgian hop bitterings - and light yeast and spice. However, it just seems that it could use a bit of strengthening up - it doesn't pack much of a punch. The flavors are there, but they're not very bold. I'm willing to bet that subsequent pours containing a bit more yeast will zip up the flavor significantly.

The mouthfeel is quite nice, in a tart, pleasantly zippy, well-carbonated fashion. It's a light-bodied beer with a bit of stickiness in the mouth that lingers after swallowing - simultaneously good for savoring and for enjoying at a more spirited pace.

I'll have to see what happens with later pours, but if the entire bottle tastes like the first, yeast-free pour, I imagine this is the ultimate Belgian session brew - 8%abv notwithstanding. This is so easy to drink, I'd have no problem putting a few of these back (much to my later chagrin, I'm sure.)

Tupperwolf, Apr 03, 2006
Photo of lordofthewiens
4.38/5  rDev +4.3%
look: 4 | smell: 4 | taste: 4.5 | feel: 4.5 | overall: 4.5

I really have enjoyed the beers I've tried from this brewery. This beer was a hazy orange with a thick white head and wonderful carbonation. It had a sweet, spicy odor. The taste was wonderful; spicy, some fruit (lemon), with a warm hoppy finish. Very nice, a great beer to drink.

lordofthewiens, Mar 26, 2006
Photo of DaPeculierDane
4.45/5  rDev +6%
look: 4.5 | smell: 4 | taste: 4.5 | feel: 4 | overall: 5

On tap at Maduro in Madison, Wi. Poured hazy golden with a brilliant fluffy and lasting white head into a la Chouffe glass. Carbonation is like a seiche, swelling and tumultuous. Aromas are big and lovely. Spicey saaz hops, lemon peeper, and pilsner malts. Very nice. Flavor is fruity and crisp with a great big lemon zinger bite at the end. Great bite! Finish is spicy and dry with a nice lingering hoppiness. Very refreshing.

Update...after 20 odd more glasses (yes I am a lush but this stuff was on tap for only 3 bucks!) I have increased drinkability to 5 and the taste to 4.5 (from 4). I love this beer!

DaPeculierDane, Mar 24, 2006
Photo of SaCkErZ9
3.88/5  rDev -7.6%
look: 4 | smell: 4.5 | taste: 3.5 | feel: 4 | overall: 4

Poured a chill hazed induced cloudy bronze color. Dispensed into a La Chouffe tulip glass. Large, frothy head forms and dissappears rather slowly. No lacing is left on the glass. Active carbonation.

Aroma is wonderfully fruity. Sweet candi aromas with bubble gum as well. Earthy. Yeasty as well. Nice aroma. One of the better of the Belgians I have tried so far.

Has a bit of a dirt/mulch taste to it. Not bad, just different. Some astringency I dont think is due to any hops. Large fruit presence. Yeast is there but fairly subdued. Alcohol barely noticeable. A pleasant tasting beer. Too much "earthiness" if you ask me but not bad.

Light and crisp mouthfeel. Medium bodied. Slick tongue and teeth. Crispnes is refreshing. Very drinkable and quite enjoyable.

I have to admit, the best thing I like about the LaChouffe's is the bottle art. Something about little gnomes who make beer is quite appealing indeed. They are just cute as buttons on the bottle. I wish I owned one so he could brew beer at my beck and call. Maybe I can find one under the bridge behind my house.

SaCkErZ9, Mar 17, 2006
Photo of danielharper
3.88/5  rDev -7.6%
look: 4.5 | smell: 4 | taste: 4 | feel: 3.5 | overall: 3.5

Purchased from Frugal MacDougal, Nashville, TN.

A: Cloudy yellow body, thick white foamy head. Leaves significant lacing on glass.

S: Orange peel, coriander, largely citrus aroma. Slight Belgian funk. Very spicy.

T: Tickles the tongue with various spices, leaves a nice Belgian yeastiness behind. Otherwise very citrus flavor, much like orange juice.

M: Thick, luxurious. Not quite as nice as many Belgians, but quite good nonetheless.

D: Not my favorite Belgian by any stretch, but fans of the style will like it. A bit like a Belgian Pale cross with a witbier.

danielharper, Mar 12, 2006
Photo of weeare138
4.33/5  rDev +3.1%
look: 4 | smell: 4.5 | taste: 4.5 | feel: 4 | overall: 4

On draft at Ortino's Northside...
Appears a hazy gold with a creamy white head that slowly fades out into a collar. Scattered spots of lacing around the glass.
Smell is of mild funkyness, spice, with lots of sugary fruitiness to it. Some earthy notes with coriander and flowers.
Taste is of the same mix with a mild cinnamon and perhaps applejuice, biscuits, and fruity cloves in the mix.
Mouthfeel is decently carbonated with a medium body.

weeare138, Mar 11, 2006
Photo of Jredner
3.53/5  rDev -16%
look: 4 | smell: 3.5 | taste: 3.5 | feel: 3.5 | overall: 3.5

Spicy perfume-like aroma with a touch of citrus rind. Pale gold color with the obligatory two finge thick fluffy belgian head. Very clean feel in the fore and the flavors are somewhat medicinal and very floral. Mild notes of chamomille and lavendaer and more of the citrus rind.

Jredner, Mar 06, 2006
Photo of DarkerTheBetter
4.35/5  rDev +3.6%
look: 4.5 | smell: 4.5 | taste: 4.5 | feel: 4 | overall: 4

This beer poured a foggy gold with a bit of peach. The head was huge in my tulip consisting of uniform little bubbles sustained by a nice column of bubbles rising from the bottom. This left behind a delicate sheet of lace.

Smells of honey and cloves with a lemon sourness, a little wheat and banana and a hint of spiciness.

The flavor is a bit hard to detect as the mouth feel is so light, dry and carbonated. There’s a storm of bubbles swirling around my mouth letting off their carbon dioxide sting. Behind this chaos, I detect some honey and cantaloupe sweetness with a dry spicy yeast that releases some cloves and plumb. Behind this is a mushroom and musky wheat malt. Finishes with a pleasant yeast that seems to be a hybrid of a musky hefeweitzen-like yeast, and a more peppery Belgian yeast.

I’m instantly a big fan of this one. Truly a pleasure to drink, but I think the wicked carbonation could get old after a while.

DarkerTheBetter, Mar 03, 2006
Photo of pfknapp
4.38/5  rDev +4.3%
look: 4 | smell: 4.5 | taste: 4.5 | feel: 4.5 | overall: 4

I was at monk's cafe this weekend and continued on my quest to expand my knowledge of Belgian Beers. I ordered a la chouffe and it came to me in a tulip glass on tap. It started out with a nice white head that faded a little too quickly but was beautiful none the less. It smelled of pears and pepper, along with other fuits and spice I couldn't quite pin down. It was very intriguing and begged me to dive in. It tasted of the same, with some malty sweetness and a dry, spicy finish. Again, more generic spice and fruit that i unfortunately can't nail down more specifically. The mouthfeel was simultaneously light and creamy. Active carbonation added to the dry perception and made it a very lively drink. I have to say I was quite pleased with this one and I will be trying it from the bottle very soon.

pfknapp, Feb 21, 2006
Photo of bruachan
4.1/5  rDev -2.4%
look: 3.5 | smell: 3.5 | taste: 4.5 | feel: 4 | overall: 4

not a tour beer at the winking lizard, but who cares
served in a 10oz tulip

pale gold, thin head on top
very fruity and spicy flavor: lots of coriander (and chamomile?). noble hop flavor as well
fairly bitter, which reminds me of orval. i prefer this, but strong bitterness in a belgian always throws me for a loop. any good reason? probably not

more coriander in the aroma (i'm drinking this after an ommegang witte, so i think i've had my coriander intake for the night), but some light malt does make it through the fruityspiciness

got a bottle of 2003 N'Ice; i may have to crack that soon

bruachan, Feb 12, 2006
Photo of bennetj17
4/5  rDev -4.8%
look: 4 | smell: 4.5 | taste: 4 | feel: 4 | overall: 3.5

Cloudy, pale, light orange color. Half-inch head that lingers nicely. Smell is strong. Mildly sweet malt flavors with notes of citrus, apple, spice, and cloves. Taste is both sweet and sour, lightly-spicy, with hints of cinnamon and other spice. Malt flavor is fruity as described in the smell, but also bready. Medium-body, not too thin, it coats nicely and has good carbonation. Very unique flavor. Interesting and quite drinkable. Definitely worth a try...

bennetj17, Feb 11, 2006
Photo of JohnfromDublin
3.9/5  rDev -7.1%
look: 4 | smell: 3.5 | taste: 4 | feel: 4 | overall: 4

Tasted on 5th Feb 2006, a 750ml bottle with crown cap best before end 2008.
I have had this several times on draft before and always enjoyed it; purchased this bottle in Redmond's of Ranelagh, Dublin, Ireland.

Poured into a Leffe chalice, appearence good, a decent head on a slightly hazy light amber body. Very nice lacing on the glass.
Smelled okay with a grassy straw perfume.

Taste was not that complex, but masked the alcohol very well. This, combined with the mouthfeel make this a very solid and dependable brew. Enjoyed sharing this bottle.

JohnfromDublin, Feb 08, 2006
Photo of jlh8643
4.28/5  rDev +1.9%
look: 4 | smell: 4 | taste: 4.5 | feel: 4.5 | overall: 4

On draft at 3F's brewpub. A great white head sits on top of a red tinged gold body. A steady stream of bubbles race to the top. Great lacing down the glass as it is emptied. Bananna esters with some sweet malt welcome my nose. A well rounded body with good malt backbone and just enough hops to keep things in check. The alcohol is well hidden. This could be a sleeper after several pints go down the gullet. Very enjoyable!

jlh8643, Feb 04, 2006
Photo of Hautacam
4.08/5  rDev -2.9%
look: 3.5 | smell: 4.5 | taste: 4 | feel: 4 | overall: 4

Slightly cloudy gold with very little head that is soon gone.Served on tap in a Mc Chouffe tulip glass.
Smells very light fruit, malt and a hint of alcohol.
Taste is very well balanced fruit, spice , yeast..the hops are barely there, and just the right amount of sugar....the Belgians always seem to get that right. Gets better as it warms up...more of everything...same nice balance.
Mouthfeel is medium , slight dry finish....slight hop aftertaste...good.
Very drinkable...had one with dinner and another after....could have had another....yes I could.
Good stuff.

Hautacam, Jan 29, 2006
Photo of sabrills70
3.83/5  rDev -8.8%
look: 4.5 | smell: 4 | taste: 4 | feel: 4 | overall: 3

750ml silkscreened bottlecapped bottle. Poured a slightly cloudy medium gold with a huge head and very good lace. Smells of slight caramel malt with honey and slight apple and peach flavors - a bit champagne like. Malty and fruit (apples and peach) up front with some spicyness and finishes with a slight non lingering hoppiness. More fruityness than anything - again champagne like. Perhaps a bit too fruity but still a tasty beer. Although I found the fruityness refreshing and different at the begining it became a bit annoying at the end of the bottle.

sabrills70, Jan 27, 2006
Photo of jakester
4/5  rDev -4.8%
look: 4 | smell: 4 | taste: 4 | feel: 4 | overall: 4

I had this on tap at Union Jack's on the Manatawny. It came in a tulip glass.

Arrives a hazy gold with a 1-1/2 finger head of beautiful white foam. Carbonation appears pretty high. The head falls to islands and a ring, with pretty good lacing.

Aroma is spicy and fruity, with notes of pears, golden raisins, pepper and nutmeg. There is a light yeast smell, along with some of that Belgian funky shit going on! Smells good!

Flavor is malty sweet, slightly bready, with notes of pears, golden raisins, and spices like above. Residual sweetness is fairly high. Hop character is low. Aftertaste is sweet, spicy, warm, and slightly yeasty.

Mouthfeel is medium bodied, pretty sweet, with medium carbonation. Finish is sweet and mellow.

This, to me, is your average sweet Belgian pale ale stuff. It's good, very tasty, good aroma, nice Belgian funkiness, pretty well balanced. Nothing over the top, but I'd drink it anytime.

jakester, Jan 24, 2006
Photo of geexploitation
4.28/5  rDev +1.9%
look: 4 | smell: 4 | taste: 4.5 | feel: 4.5 | overall: 4

What a wonderful beer. I'm surprised this doesn't get more attention vs. the Duvels, etc. of the world.

This beer is a cloudy gold, with a thick white head that dissipates slowly. The head gives off a fragrant aroma of Goldings hops and coriander. The taste is crisp and spicy, with coriander predominating. Essentially, there's a lot of witbier in this, in spite of the fact that it's not a wheat beer. The predominant taste is bitter, but it's well balanced with a touch of sweetness. Mouthfeel is supple, albeit with a sharp initial rush of carbonation; this is a beer that rolls over the tongue with no resistance whatsoever. I would call this beer very drinkable, especially if you're comparing it to other Belgians.

Well worth seeking out. Don't ignore the other Belgian biggies, but add this to the list of things to respect and enjoy frequently.

geexploitation, Jan 22, 2006
Photo of ElGordo
4.22/5  rDev +0.5%
look: 4 | smell: 3.5 | taste: 4.5 | feel: 4 | overall: 4.5

What does a wonderful fiancee get me for Christmas? The Chouffe gift pack, consisting of this beer, a bottle of McChouffe, and a glass with the Chouffe gnome guy.
Pours a bright, translucent golden color topped by a huge creamy white head that takes its sweet time to shrink to a manageable size. Clean aroma is rather subtle - light sweet malt, light grassy hops, a touch of astringency, and maybe (?) lavender or some other light herb. Palate is very pleasant and more assertive than the nose. Sweet malt, grassy hops, a touch of Belgian yeast, and light aromatic herbs. Light body holds the flavor well enough, but becomes a bit foamy. Still, immensely drinkable and enjoyable; I had the entire bottle and would probably have another were it in the house.

ElGordo, Jan 18, 2006
Photo of NClifestyle
3.55/5  rDev -15.5%
look: 3.5 | smell: 3.5 | taste: 3.5 | feel: 4 | overall: 3.5

A xmas gift, along with the brown.
Lovely hazy golden color, thick white head of large bubbles, some nice lace, and a tight layer on top of the beer for the duration.
Smells of yeast, lemon, earthy elements.
Taste was spicy, yeasty, crisp malt with a sharp bite in the back of the mouth.
This beer has lots of carbonation and thickens in the mouth, quite a fullness per sip.
A nice belgian beer, but I couldn't do more than 1 large bottle, and I had to split that one.

cheres...

NClifestyle, Jan 15, 2006
Photo of Dukeofearl
4.4/5  rDev +4.8%
look: 4.5 | smell: 4.5 | taste: 4.5 | feel: 4.5 | overall: 4

750 ml bottle, purchased at LaBodega in Riverside, CA for $10.99 in December 2005.

A capped 750, that's kind of strange. Opens with a slight pffft and that's it, I was thinking there might be a rush of gunshot and smoke, but nope, just pffft. Pours a slightly murky golden color, with lots of pinpoints of suspended sediment (yeast, I assume). Pleasant head, with a very nice thin white cap that sits on top of the beer for the entire session. Why can't all beers do this?

Aroma is spices (made with coriander, and it shows, or should I say, smells). Faint orange peel, yard weeds/grass, and banana. Maybe a touch of tropical fruit oils too. Quite nice.

Flavor off the bat (first taste, when a bit too cold) was not exciting to me. It was a bit harsh and too organic. But as it warmed, and as my tongue got used to the beer, it became apparent that there's a lot going on here. Of course there's coriander, but it's not overpowering like I've tasted before. Tropical fruits come out, and a hop astringency at the end makes for a very nice finish.

Nice full mouthfeel, pleasant. The ABV is a little too high for the highest of drinkabilities.

This is the third or so time I've had this beer, and it's the first time I can say I've really enjoyed it. All I can say is that this is a good one if you give it a chance.

Dukeofearl, Jan 08, 2006
Photo of Shovelbum
4.63/5  rDev +10.2%
look: 5 | smell: 4.5 | taste: 4.5 | feel: 4.5 | overall: 5

Pours a towering billowy white head over a translucent copper body. Cascades of tiny bubbles rapidly rise upward. The head receedes to a fine layer over the beer, but never dies, and leaves sticky lace all the way down. Aromas of white grapes, sweet malt, alcohol, earth and pepper fill the nose. Light caramel malt flavor up front joined by and pepper and coriander spice. A bit of sweet orange flavor in here too. The hop bitterness is in the background, but is assertive enough to counterbalance the other flavors. Light bodied, well-carbonated. Extremely smooth in the mouth with a clean slightly drying finish.

Delicate complexity and excellent balance makes this one fine ale. The alcohol is barely noticeable, apart from an initial whiff in the nose and its warming afterglow. The complexity of flavors combined with excellent balance and a light body and mouthfeel makes this an excellent complement to a meal or an eminently quaffable ale on its own.
Hail to the gnome!

Shovelbum, Jan 04, 2006
La Chouffe from Brasserie d'Achouffe
94 out of 100 based on 1,962 ratings.