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N'Ice Chouffe - Brasserie d'Achouffe

Not Rated.
N'Ice ChouffeN'Ice Chouffe

Displayed for educational use only; do not reuse.
BA SCORE
91
outstanding

821 Ratings
THE BROS
94
outstanding

(view ratings)
Ratings: 821
Reviews: 450
rAvg: 4.08
pDev: 9.8%
Wants: 38
Gots: 67 | FT: 0
Brewed by:
Brasserie d'Achouffe visit their website
Belgium

Style | ABV
Belgian Strong Dark Ale |  10.00% ABV

Availability: Winter

Notes/Commercial Description:
No notes at this time.

(Beer added by: Bierman9 on 12-14-2001)
Beer: Ratings & Reviews
Sort by:  Usefulness | Recent | High | Low | Top Raters | Read the Alström Bros Beer Reviews and Beer Ratings of N'Ice Chouffe Alström Bros
Ratings: 821 | Reviews: 450 | Display Reviews Only:
Photo of WetCoaster
3.1/5  rDev -24%
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.

WetCoaster, Mar 02, 2007
Photo of Onibubba
3.1/5  rDev -24%
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.

Onibubba, Nov 10, 2008
Photo of kojevergas
3.13/5  rDev -23.3%
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.

kojevergas, Oct 23, 2011
Photo of smakawhat
3.15/5  rDev -22.8%
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.

smakawhat, Oct 26, 2011
Photo of TMoney2591
3.18/5  rDev -22.1%
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.

TMoney2591, Oct 06, 2011
Photo of Hophead101
3.2/5  rDev -21.6%
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.

Hophead101, Sep 13, 2008
Photo of BMMillsy
3.21/5  rDev -21.3%
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.

BMMillsy, Jan 26, 2014
Photo of leinie13
3.25/5  rDev -20.3%

leinie13, Nov 19, 2013
Photo of rkcrozier
3.25/5  rDev -20.3%

rkcrozier, Jan 02, 2013
Photo of ThickNStout
3.25/5  rDev -20.3%
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.

ThickNStout, Jan 04, 2013
Photo of Kerne
3.25/5  rDev -20.3%

Kerne, Dec 14, 2013
Photo of jeff1973
3.25/5  rDev -20.3%

jeff1973, Apr 15, 2014
Photo of Hellpop65
3.25/5  rDev -20.3%

Hellpop65, Sep 01, 2014
Photo of DudMan
3.25/5  rDev -20.3%

DudMan, Nov 29, 2013
Photo of Mar02x
3.28/5  rDev -19.6%
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.

Mar02x, Dec 26, 2011
Photo of jsanford
3.28/5  rDev -19.6%
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.

jsanford, Dec 23, 2011
Photo of CMW
3.28/5  rDev -19.6%
look: 4.5 | smell: 4 | taste: 3 | feel: 4 | overall: 2.5

A - Poured into the glass a dark ruby tint with a large fluffly off-white head. Looks very tasty.

S - This has a much spicier nose than most Xmas beers. There is a heavy smell of sugar as well. Also, slightly metallic.

T - Taste was much sweeter than I had imagined. The malt is a little earthy upfront but this quickly fades to the taste of candied fruit. This sweetness was a little too heavy in my opinion. Small tinge of alcohol in the finish.

M&D - Very smooth but the sweetness makes this hard to drink. I am usually a big fan of their creations but this one just didn't strike me the same way.

CMW, Jan 04, 2010
Photo of Brewfan
3.33/5  rDev -18.4%
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.

Brewfan, Oct 16, 2005
Photo of rapidsequence
3.38/5  rDev -17.2%
look: 4.5 | smell: 4 | taste: 3 | feel: 4 | overall: 3

750 ml capped bottle.

Appearance: Pours a dark brown which is dark, dark red, almost purplish when held to light. The head is huge, white, puffy, rocky, and never leaves. There are big dollops of chunky marshmallow floating in the rim that remains at the bottom of the glass. Lacing=awesome. Downgraded only for an abundance of suspended yeast, even in the first careful pour.

Smell: Really good. Very yeasty, spicy, and sweet. Sweet, dark fruit and a little nose- burning booze.

Taste: I think I wish this did not have "thyme and curacao peel." Definitely not the curacao peel. It is overspiced and too bitter. That really kinda ruins it. There is sweet maltiness and fruit and nice bready yeast flavors. After I swallow it and the bitterness is forgotten, I want another sip, but then I'm dissapointed again.

Mouthfeel: Good. Pretty much medium to full. Good carbonation. Creamy head in every sip.

Drinkability: So close. Leave out the spice and orange and let the beer speak for itself. As it is, its an almost. I wont buy it again.

rapidsequence, Oct 28, 2009
Photo of axeman9182
3.38/5  rDev -17.2%
look: 2 | smell: 4 | taste: 3.5 | feel: 2 | overall: 3.5

750mL bottle, the last of my BBF volunteer haul, allowed to warm some before being poured into my Duvel tulip.

N'Ice Chouffe pours a very deep brown, with just the faintest cherry outline when held directly to light. The bone colored head is somewhat muted, and while retention is OK lacing is nonexistent. The predominant flavors I'm getting in the nose are a semi sweet milk chocolate and a bit of orange, not a bad combination. The flavor does show some variety. On different sips I find notes of mild milk chocolate and sweet dark fruits up front. On the spice end the orange peel works really well, and the thyme melds together somewhat with a kick of clove from the yeast. All in all though the spice flavors tend to drown out the malty ones a bit too much, I feel like this beer's underattenuated. That concern carries across into the mouthfeel, where the body is surprisingly thin for a 10%ABV beer. This only accentuates what I feel is a carbonation level that is a bit too high. The somewhat fizzy nature does become distracting at times. The alcohol is fairly well hidden in this beer, but all in all there's not really anything to recommend it over plenty of other Belgians.

axeman9182, Dec 18, 2010
Photo of roblowther
3.39/5  rDev -16.9%
look: 3 | smell: 4.75 | taste: 2.75 | feel: 4 | overall: 3.25

Big bottle and a big glass. I'm in heaven. The appearance is reddish brown with a quickly dissipating cream colored head. The smell is sour cherries, oak, and honey. I could build a room in that smell and live in it. The taste is chocolate, licorice, and wood. Unfortunately, licorice and I are not on speaking terms. Mouthfeel is slick, nice. Overall its interesting. It has a very pronounced flavor. I'm not sure about this one but I'm not sorry I tried it.

roblowther, Mar 09, 2013
Photo of
3.4/5  rDev -16.7%
look: 4 | smell: 4 | taste: 3 | feel: 3.5 | overall: 3.5

Opened up a 750ml bottle with cork & cage. The beer was a deep dark brown with red highlights, very clear. It produced a large, light tan head. Aroma was of yeast, spices (mint?), alcohol and cotton candy. Flavor fit with the aroma, in that it was all about sweet. Berries, grapes, some port wine character. The finish had a bit of an acidic bite to it and a lingering sweetness. Body was medium to heavy, with fairly low carbonation. ABV came through hear as a warming sensation. A very complex beer, which didn't really ring my bell. I like a little bit more bitter to balance the sweet.

, Jul 31, 2006
Photo of Toddzillamz
3.4/5  rDev -16.7%
look: 3.5 | smell: 3 | taste: 3.5 | feel: 3.5 | overall: 3.5

Break yourselves fools! Your favorite b-film star is back reviewing these brews to keep you in the know. I first off want to thank y'all for the fan mail. It means a lot to me, especially in these hardened times. I'm making the best of it though. Fighting the rats for stale crackers and smokin' prison shorts. The one thing I won't skimp on though is good beer! I'll scour the globe to find hidden hop gems, and bring back my findings to my crew (you people). I catch buzzes like Joey B catches Chlamydia. So, here we go into the time of year when the Christmas, or Holiday ales show their faces. Those heartwarmingly sweet little bastards that you wait all year for. Well, let it snow, let it snow, let it snow! Toss a log on the fire and cuddle up under the bear rug with a couple russian hunnies. We crackin' open some N'Ice Chouffe bitches!

A: Liquid rust with a sandy bottom. Like staring into a aquarium of dead fishes. You don't know what you're in store for. Oh snap, is something moving around down there?
S: Liquid dish soap. I tried to blow bubbles....not the monkey.
T: Not as good as the original...but, you gotta get that last pour. Was worth the wait....well, not really.
M: Very light off the back end. Almost feels like it's stealing my soul as I pull away from the glass. Bizarre.
O: There are handfuls of better Christmas ales out there. Ask Santa for a better gift.

Toddzillamz, Nov 08, 2012
Photo of AKBelgianBeast
3.43/5  rDev -15.9%
look: 4 | smell: 3 | taste: 3.5 | feel: 3.5 | overall: 3.5

2005 vintage.
Poured into a glass goblet. Pours dark brown with the color and texture of gulden draak vintage. The head quickly dissipates into a thin ring. The nose is spicy and of slight dark fruit. Raisin and date. Taste is a similar to gulden, but with more spice and less strength. dark fruit flavors with some orane and spice flavoring. slight hop finish, aftertaste fades quickly. Mouthfeel is odd as it feels a little overcarbonated and quite thin. Drinkability would be good but the carbonation makes it kind of abrasive. Good beer, would probably age very well.

AKBelgianBeast, Dec 20, 2007
Photo of MisterClean
3.45/5  rDev -15.4%
look: 3.5 | smell: 3 | taste: 3.5 | feel: 3 | overall: 4

Bottle at kerstbier tasting at the Shack.

A - Light mahogany with 2 fingers that quickly dissipates. Little lacing left in the glass.

S - Belgian candi sugars and light alcohol. Couldn't smell much else going on in this beer.

T - Belgian candi sugars, light alcohol, caramel, and bittering hops.

M - Fairly thin on the mouthfeel, but very sharp, but not in a bitter sense.

D - Really different most Belgian dark strong ales, but good.

MisterClean, Dec 17, 2008
N'Ice Chouffe from Brasserie d'Achouffe
91 out of 100 based on 821 ratings.