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N'Ice Chouffe - Brasserie d'Achouffe

Not Rated.
N'Ice ChouffeN'Ice Chouffe

Educational use only; do not reuse.

485 Reviews

(Read More)
Reviews: 485
Hads: 1,052
Avg: 4.06
pDev: 14.53%
Wants: 53
Gots: 161 | FT: 2
Brewed by:
Brasserie d'Achouffe visit their website

Style | ABV
Belgian Strong Dark Ale |  10.00% ABV

Availability: Winter

Notes & Commercial Description:
Beer added by: Bierman9 on 12-14-2001

Brewed with thyme and curaçao
Beer: Reviews & Ratings
Sort by:  Recent | High | Low | Top Raters | Read the Alström Bros Beer Reviews and Beer Ratings of N'Ice Chouffe Alström Bros
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Reviews: 485 | Hads: 1,052
Photo of maxson924
2.41/5  rDev -40.6%
look: 3 | smell: 2 | taste: 2.5 | feel: 2.5 | overall: 2.5

This one was recommended to me from all over and I can't say I understand why. The description for this style on this site says that it can be "very bold and in your face" which is definitely true here. It's just that, in my opinion, it's true to a fault.

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Photo of AdamBear
2.53/5  rDev -37.7%
look: 3.5 | smell: 3 | taste: 2.5 | feel: 2 | overall: 2

A-cherry brown with a thin white head

S-sweet caramel and peppercorn. hot belgian spices, some licorice. medium strength

T-comes in with a smooth but warm taste of licorice, light belgian spices, and peppercorn. matching after-taste with a lot of heat to it.

M-almost not carbonation with a hot finish

O-i just simply do not like my beers to be so hot, i also like my belgians to have a good amount of carbonation to it. those two aspects made this beer difficult to finish for me and its something i'll be avoiding from now on.

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Photo of Spider889
2.77/5  rDev -31.8%
look: 5 | smell: 3 | taste: 2.5 | feel: 2.5 | overall: 2.5

Pours a dark garnet color with brownish tinges. the beer is slightly hazed, there's some visible suspended yeast. I got a tall head, light brown sugar in color. The retention was great and the lace was superlative. The lace formed a solid wall around my glass, and reminded me of that fake spray-on snow that gets used around the holidays. Appropriate for the style and a n'ice pairing with the picture on the bottle.

The smell is certainly composed of thyme, but I also got a n'ice amount of sage out of it was well. Reminded me more of a certain collaboration between DFH, Stone, and Victory... Not as sweet or spicy as I'd like for a winter seasonal. The yeast is almost biting, and the alcohol is strong on the nose.

The taste is immediately alcohol forward. This is one boozy 10% beer. Slight sweetness from the dark candied sugars, but the yeast overpowers most of the sweetness. I didn't really detect any of the supposed orange peel, which actually would have been a n'ice addition to the flavor profile. Lots of herbal notes, again thyme and sage.

Medium bodied, high carbonation. The alcohol along with the carbonation stings the tongue unpleasantly. Way too boozy. finishes bitter.

This was a m'eh beer. I don't see myself buying this next year. Not as n'ice of a beer as I was led to believe.

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Photo of StoutSlayer
2.84/5  rDev -30%
look: 3 | smell: 4 | taste: 2 | feel: 4 | overall: 2.5

Not a ton to say about this beer. Pours great with a very good 2 finger head that retains itself. The color is an extreamly dark amber but not quite brown. The initial taste is good with a nice malty sweetness-bannana evident as well- followed by a heavy spicyness/bitterness probably excentuated by the curacao. A noticeable hotness on the nose and tounge, but it is to be expected as it comes in at 10% abv. However, unfortunately this all breaks down rather quickly into an off, highly medicinal taste that lingers. This also hurts the drinkability for me because of said aftertaste. Not the worst beer, but for the price, and with the many other great seasonal Belgium offerings, it is not nearly my favorite.

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Photo of Mounty4Life
2.85/5  rDev -29.8%
look: 3 | smell: 3 | taste: 2.5 | feel: 3.5 | overall: 3

Dark raspberry color with no head or lacing....had in march so probably been on a while
Fruity,frambroisish cherry's and Belgian yeast
Mix of cider and rasp frambrois...not my cup of tea
Better for Belgian hides 10%
Never again unless in Belgium and desire fruity beer that packs punch

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Photo of Jredner
2.92/5  rDev -28.1%
look: 3.5 | smell: 4 | taste: 2 | feel: 3.5 | overall: 3

Aroma is highly spiced and tickles the nose. Dark red/brown in color with a typically thick Belgian head. Flavor is somewhat muted in the fore to be honest. far less sweet than most Belgian X-mas ales and that is nice. The fore is very mellow malts and slight spice then the finish is dominated by the bitter orange that coats the tongue. If you press your tongue hard against the roof of your mouth you’ll feel how thouroughly the tongue is coated. A decent brew with a different approache, but I have to say it wasn’t all that great to me.

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Photo of rrski198
2.95/5  rDev -27.3%
look: 3 | smell: 3 | taste: 3 | feel: 2.5 | overall: 3

Hap on tap at the international tap house in chesterfield missouri. Review from notes.

A: Dark red/brown. Small off white head that disapates quickly. No lacing at all.

S: Booze and sweet fruit dominate. Hints of molasses and spice.

T: Wine like grape flavor. Dark fruit, plum/raisin. THe s[ice is much more prevalent in the flavor as opposed to the smell.

M: Low carbonation and again very boozy. Surpirsing light in the body for the ABV. Outside of the booze and subsequent burn, there isnt alot here.

O: I was really excited to find this on tap, however, a little disappointed. Solid beer but it falls short of their hopped up belgian IPA, houblon Chouffe.

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Photo of utfiero
3/5  rDev -26.1%
look: 3 | smell: 3 | taste: 3 | feel: 3 | overall: 3

Color- hazy, muck and sediment filled brownish amber. Full head.

Aroma- pear, coriander, composting fruit, and hint of tin.

Taste- starts A rather syrupy sweet strong Belgian. Starts sweet with a flat carbonated entry making the making the flavors and feel seem stale, then finishes with mild yet lackluster sweet fruity and spiced notes including pear, raisin, and cheap toffee. Given the many Belgian ales on the market, this one does not stand apart from the field. Purchased at Spec's June 2014. The bottle states "best before end 2014." We're speculating that the heavy haze and suspended chunks of muck in our bottle may have been due to heat in transport.

Poured from a 750 ml bottle into a Liefmans Goudenband glass (my preferred all purpose beer tasting glass). Tasted on 6/10/14.

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Photo of LilBeerDoctor
3.03/5  rDev -25.4%
look: 3.5 | smell: 3 | taste: 3 | feel: 3 | overall: 3

Reviewed on 06/22/2009. On tap at Sunset Grill, Boston. This beer pours brown with a thick white head. The aroma is of sweet malt and light fruits. The flavor is initially lots of sweet malt with slight spices. Kind of bland and too sweet also. Meh...

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Photo of PatandDavid
3.06/5  rDev -24.6%
look: 4 | smell: 3 | taste: 3 | feel: 3 | overall: 3

Had on tap at Anam Cara. Served in a lovely Mc'Chouffe glass, with a little gnome keeping me company. Dark chestnut when served, it came topped with about an inch of tan head. Dried fruit aroma (like prunes or plums).Taste is interesting, it's a medium mouthfeel, the taste comes very quickly, and then it's gone. Finish is of malty sweetness with some fruit juice at the end. I wasn't blown away to be honest.

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Photo of jbertsch
3.07/5  rDev -24.4%
look: 3 | smell: 3.5 | taste: 3 | feel: 2.5 | overall: 3

Poured into a Stella glass.
Amber brown in color, with an airy sudsy head that dissipates very quickly to nothing.

Aroma gives off caramelized, bready malt with fruitcake-like notes.

The taste reminds me a bit of Christmas oriented ales. Spicy malt with booze noticeable. A little candied sugar. Tartness present without it being too sour.

This is supposed to be brewed with thyme and orange peel. There’s a faint herbalness to it but I wouldn’t get the thyme if I didn’t know it was brewed with it. I can see the bittersweet, earthy note of orange peel in there. It’s not strong by any means, barely there, but there. A dry tartness lingers along with notes of tea.

Carbonation is above avg at first, but seems to dwindle fast as you sip this.

This was an OK offering. I enjoyed it but also wouldn’t see myself buying another. It paired well enough with a platter of cheese salami, honey, and hummus.

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Photo of Kraken
3.08/5  rDev -24.1%
look: 3.5 | smell: 3 | taste: 3 | feel: 3.5 | overall: 3

Reviewed from notes drank over Christmas.

Poured from a corked and caged 750ml bottle into a Fin Du Monde tulip glass. Moderate pour yields a three finger head that crashes back to the surface fairly quickly. Lace is spotty at best. Color is a dark cloudy brown.

Nose- Light nuttiness, woodsy, little bit of orange.

Palate- Lightly sweet, very actively carbonated. Some nuttiness, orange peel. Hot! Some herbal elements of gin. Finishes very dry Curacao is to much for me.

Mouthfeel- Active

Drinkability- not my favorite holiday brew.

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Photo of teromous
3.11/5  rDev -23.4%
look: 4 | smell: 3 | taste: 3 | feel: 3.5 | overall: 3

A: Dark brow beer that appears mostly black in the glass. About a quarter of a thumb of white head. Some lacing.

S: I get lots of alcohol esters, and a little bit of a fruity scent.

T: Banana flavor along with some grain taste, and even a little bit of a woody character. Very malty and quite sweet at the back of the mouth after drinking. I did not taste the thyme or orange peel as the label dictates. That is unless the slightly woody flavor is just how the thyme tastes in beer.

M: The mouthfeel is full and a bit creamy. Not sticky.

O: Overall I thought it was pretty good but it seemed rather average for a Stong Dark. I really like the Achouffe beers, but I can't say that I picked up any of the special ingredients added to this beer. It is a good beer, but not anything more special than another Belgian. I can't say that the price tag validates the quality of the beer.

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Photo of Onibubba
3.13/5  rDev -22.9%
look: 4 | smell: 3.5 | taste: 3 | feel: 3.5 | overall: 2.5

2007 bottle. Pours is a dark amber, almost brown with a very nice lingering off white head. Smell is a bit herbal. Hard to describe. Odd. Taste is very herbal / medecinal. Very odd - more like a european apertif if that makes any sense. Piney, but not resiny. Juniper berries? Mouthfeel is highly carbonated. Tastes quite hot as well. The mix of noticable alcohol and medecinal herbs may create a nice winter warmer, but does not work for me as a beer. In fact, I find it to be quite harsh. I'm afraid, in my case, drinkability is poor. Least favorite offing from this brewery, but that is just a matter of personal tastes.

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Photo of kojevergas
3.15/5  rDev -22.4%
look: 3.5 | smell: 3.5 | taste: 3 | feel: 3 | overall: 3

75cl dark green glass bottle with standard pressure cap served into Chouffe 25cl stemware in low altitude Los Angeles, California. Reviewed live. Expectations are high. It was served almost fresh from the fridge, but not too cold.

A: Pours a two finger head of nice cream, decent thickness, and good retention for the high ABV. Colour is a dark caramel; nontransparent.

Sm: Candied sugar, light spice (clove?), caramelized malt, a dark ester, and cream. A moderate strength aroma. Consulting the label, I suppose the spice is thyme - but I have no idea what thyme smells like.

T: Candied sugar is heavy, but the finish is surprisingly light. The caramelized malt is a bit too emphasize for the balance, but it works alright. The spices are well placed but not overly prominent. It's a bit imbalanced, but the build is pleasant albeit unfocused. I wouldn't go so far as to call it simple, but it could have more depth.

Mf: A touch tingly on account of the candied sugar, but largely smooth and wet. Overly thick, but then that might have been necessary to cover the high ABV.

Dr: It hides its high ABV very well, and is built to style, but there's room for improvement. I'd try it on draught, but otherwise there's nothing special here.

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Photo of WetCoaster
3.15/5  rDev -22.4%
look: 4 | smell: 4 | taste: 3 | feel: 3.5 | overall: 2

*2006 edition

Appearance: Well, hate to say it, but it looks pretty much like every other winter warmer out there. Mahogany with golden highlights. Off-white head with decent retention.

Smell: Very interesting. Deep and saturated malt and winter spice, floral, cherry, but also green and fresh garden herbs.

Taste/Mouthfeel: Hmmmm. An odd amalgam of vegetal and sweet. Sweet, malty and spicy, as you might expect, but that thyme is GREEN and absolutely dominates the finish. I'm not sure why it's here, to be frank; it's a very odd flavor. That said, the huge ABV is nicely concealed. Body is medium, smooth carbonation, just fine.

Drinkability: Man, NOT for me. I simply don't get this beer. I think it might work better with food than on its own; perhaps the thyme melds well with some of the winter lamb/game dishes and stews you might run across. As a stand-alone, though, that huge fresh herb just has no place in the otherwise rich malt and sweet spice mix -- ruined it for me.

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Photo of smakawhat
3.18/5  rDev -21.7%
look: 4 | smell: 3.5 | taste: 3 | feel: 3 | overall: 3

Poured from the 75cl bottle into a large snifter glass. Bottle just arrived on store shelves, a recent purchase, this beer is not old whatsoever. It is very recent.

A very surprising light but well together put off white head and foamy soapy consistency off the pour. Out of the bottle the beer is almost golden dark, but hits the glass with a very simple dark chestnut brown. Fairly clear if dark.

Nose is husky, slight ripping grain, interesting fruit angle on this coming across with small sense of dark malts. Clean sense, but fairly muted, but a sense that something heavy is coming. Kind of a mix between a light blonde ale, and dark. Interesting. Nothing real spectacular though, and it certainly does not smell like thyme WHAT so ever.

Taste is really sort of varied and strange. Slight orange, but a weird off malty chocolate sense too. This tastes kind of "meaty" and I was expecting hints of fruit, grain, malt, maybe even hop, but there is something very "un" beer like tasting about this. It's very odd. Texture is also a bit carbonated that just messes with everything instead of complimenting it. Slight extremely faint almost watered down toffee in the finish, as if it was hit with a sledgehammer. Really incredibly novocaine stinging tongue after awhile. Jesus what is going on with this brew?

Overall just not feeling this beer here, this is just not doing it for me, and its label description gives it NO justice whatsoever. Drinkability though even for the high abv is easy however.

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Photo of TMoney2591
3.2/5  rDev -21.2%
look: 3.5 | smell: 3.5 | taste: 3 | feel: 3.5 | overall: 3

Served in a Dogfish Head snifter.

Randomly found a 2008 vintage at my local haunt, so I figured I'd give it a go. It pours a hazy dark auburn-amber topped by a finger of dirty white foam. The nose comprises dark wheat, coriander, light mandarin orange, white bread, clove, and light cardboard. The taste brings in more of the same, along with more bread, more orange, some light cocoa powder, some maple syrup, and more cardboard. Something tells me some oxidation had its way with the beer... The body is a hefty-feeling medium, with a light moderate carbonation and a grainy feel. Overall, I think this was past its prime (despite what the "best by" date may tell me to the contrary), as it tasted fairly oxidized and felt like it had lost a step or two in the carbonation and texture areas.

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Photo of Hophead101
3.21/5  rDev -20.9%
look: 4 | smell: 3 | taste: 3 | feel: 3.5 | overall: 3.5

drank on 5.12.08 at home watching American Gladiators.

pours a very nice brown color with a fantastic head. nice tan and bubbly. head was reduced rather quickly, but was great while it lasted leaving a nice thin layer of bubbles on top.

not a whole lot of aroma, mild malty smell. as it sits more of the aroma comes out - picking up a few more of the spices - especially thyme.

this is full of flavor, wow. lots going on. it definitely gets better as it warms up. can taste the many spices. mouthfeel is a little too crisp. hits the roof of the mouth and back of the throat.

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Photo of Mar02x
3.22/5  rDev -20.7%
look: 4 | smell: 2 | taste: 3.5 | feel: 4 | overall: 3.5

A now that it is Chrismas, it's time to open this bottle.

A - A bright brown ale on which a light beige head rests.

S - A vague scent of malt syrup.

T - A light sweetness upfront and the malts come through along with some faint spices. There is no way of telling that this a 10% ABV.

M - As the medium carbonation is died out, there is a creamy left over, nice!

O - It's not a bad Christmas ale, but there are nicer ones out there.This one doesn't blow me of my socks.

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Photo of BMMillsy
3.22/5  rDev -20.7%
look: 2.5 | smell: 3.5 | taste: 3.25 | feel: 3.25 | overall: 3

Bottle brought by Beastmaster. Pours a deep dark red that looks beautiful in the light with a large fluffy off white head. However, there are giant chunks of yeast in this one and boy is it ugly. Aroma of sweet dark fruits: plums, cherries, spicy funky yeast. Flavor is rather syrupy sweet with big dark cherries and plums, some brief spice, and lots of candy sugar. Medium heavy mouthfeel with low carbonation. Meh, this wasn't all that great.

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Photo of ThickNStout
3.23/5  rDev -20.4%
look: 3.5 | smell: 3 | taste: 3.5 | feel: 3 | overall: 3

750mL bottle. Bottled in 2012. Served in a Boulevard snifter.

Pours deep chestnut with just over a finger of cream hued head. Very little lace.

Smells yeasty with some apple and a little peppery spice.

Taste is similar to the nose. A rather dominant yeasty funk with bits of apple, pepper, lemon zest, cherry pits and a healthy kick of booze towards the finish.

Highly carbonated medium body. Dry funky aftertaste.

Not bad but a little too much yeast dominance for my tastes.

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Photo of aleigator
3.25/5  rDev -20%

Deep brown, slightly red ember color, thin head which vanishes fast.

Aromas of malt, red fruits, not too intense.

Sweet spices, chocolate, malt, pepper, going together very well. Interessting for La Chouffe, reminds me of the typical belgium witbier, this one is very dark, with intense malts till the very end. Taste doesn’t linger too long, carbonation leads to a well balanced taste. Nice fruity, spicy brown character, with a complex but not overwhelming taste.

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Photo of jsanford
3.3/5  rDev -18.7%
look: 3.5 | smell: 3.5 | taste: 3 | feel: 3.5 | overall: 3.5

08 Vintage poured into a Tulip Glass.

A - Dark mahogany with a fluffy ivory head that settles to a 1/2 inch cap.
S - Sweet and slightly funky, with aromas of dark Belgian candi sugar, lots of orange peel, and a touch of savory herbs.
T - Similar to the nose, with flavors of dark candi sugar, dried fruits, orange peel, and thyme/sage. There is a bit of a metallic "twang" and a touch of oxidation, this is just a bit past it's prime.
M - Slick mouthfeel with a medium body and prickly carbonation.
O - A very interesting Winter beer, I love the herbal character added from the thyme. I do wish I had consumed this about a year earlier, though.

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Photo of Brewfan
3.31/5  rDev -18.5%
look: 4 | smell: 3 | taste: 3.5 | feel: 3.5 | overall: 3

Bottled in 2001.
Poured into my Hennepin chalace. Thick head, lots of big and small bubbles. Head stayed with us for almost the length of the beer. Almost immovable lace. Murky dark brown color. Medium carbonation.
Definate alcohol smell upon whiffing, even at 4 years old. I wonder how much stronger this would have been fresh. Malty with a spicy herbaciousness and wet hay backbone.
Upon tasting, there is an earthy sweetness, smooth caramel and still some phenolic alcohol taste. Peppery and a bit grassy. Silky mouthfeel.
Was expecting a little more from this beer. Maybe waiting 4 years to try it wasn't the best move. I'd like to try a greener bottle and compare.

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N'Ice Chouffe from Brasserie d'Achouffe
91 out of 100 based on 485 ratings.