N'Ice Chouffe - Brasserie d'Achouffe

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N'Ice ChouffeN'Ice Chouffe

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934 Ratings

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Ratings: 934
Reviews: 463
rAvg: 4.08
pDev: 10.05%
Wants: 48
Gots: 109 | FT: 0
Brewed by:
Brasserie d'Achouffe visit their website

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
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Ratings: 934 | Reviews: 463 | Display Reviews Only:
Photo of FreshHawk
4.15/5  rDev +1.7%
look: 3.5 | smell: 4 | taste: 4.5 | feel: 3.5 | overall: 4

A - Dark tawny, ruby brown, one of the lighter colored BSDA I've encountered. Slightly smaller than average sized, bubbly, and off-white head. Reduced pretty fast with some patchy, bubbly lacing.

S - Candi sugar and a herbal/spiced aroma are strong. Also some dark fruit and a hint of citrus. Just a touch of sweet nutty aroma as well. Sweet anise, cinnamon, coriander, and orange peel are upfront for the spices. Nice aroma that is definitely wintry, and is somewhat like a fruity Winter Warmer in its aroma.

T - Initially there is dark malt with caramel, molasses, and a hint of sweet bread along with a good amount of wintry spices (cinnamon, nutmeg, anise, coriander, and orange peel). Some dark fruit (predominantly raisin, cherry, plum and date) present at first, and this becomes stronger mid sip. This sweet and spiced flavor persists through the finish. Alcohol is slightly present with a warming presence at the finish.

M - On the lighter side of medium body and moderate (maybe a shade on the lighter side) level of carbonation. A bit of a sticky feel and a touch on the creamy side.

D - Even though there are a good amount of spices present, they do not overpower and kill the palate. Pretty drinkable beer. Definitely a nice warming beer to sip.

Notes: Vintage 2009. A nice beer that combines a number of BSDA flavors with some more Winter Warmer/wintry spices. A touch thin and on the light side, but the flavor is still pretty full, probably because of the spices. It isn't amazing, but it is a nice spiced and warming beer. Definitely worth a try, especially on a cold winter night.

Photo of therica
4.3/5  rDev +5.4%
look: 3.5 | smell: 4.5 | taste: 4.5 | feel: 4 | overall: 4

2006 bottling

A= like beef au jus sauce, dark brown and fairly dense, almost no head.

S= bouquet of raisins and orange peel with some brandy notes. I keep sitting here sniffing at it.

T= a nice Belgian-beer version of a winter warmer, plentiful raisin, some orange and probably other candied fruits, modest bitters, some liquor traits but not nearly what I experience in a Belgian Dubel and especially not something in this 10%ABV near Tripel range.

M= nice brandied fruits, the raisins and orange peel linger and are identifiable, slight syrupy feel on the tongue but not overly so.

D= a great holiday beer for a few glasses out of the huge bottle, not one I'd session on but a fantastic dessert or celebration offering.

17May2011 - 2010 Vintage Bottle
A bit on the overcarbonated grape-dominant side. Nose is strong but saying "let me age for a lot longer." Flavor is very carbonated-grape, more like a B-class carbonated wine. In fact, the nose and taste remind me of balloon-wines that I made in college. Bummer. I won't change my ratings but...

Advice-- if it's 2011 and you have a 2010 bottle, save it til at least the end of the year :-)

Photo of Yesac
3.63/5  rDev -11%
look: 4 | smell: 3.5 | taste: 3.5 | feel: 3.5 | overall: 4

2008 Edition

A- Pours dark brown and appears solid in the glass. Off-white head fades away to a thin layer and a ring around the edges.

S- Dark fruit (raisins primarily), booze, slight hints of caremel and orange peel.

T- candied/brown sugar, dried dark fruits, some spices towards the end. Boozy.

M- Medium/high carbonation, slight burn from the ABV, medium bodied.

D- Very sweet and boozy overall. This is indeed a winter warmer but lacks complexity.

Photo of stakem
3.6/5  rDev -11.8%
look: 4.5 | smell: 3.5 | taste: 3.5 | feel: 4 | overall: 3.5

2007 vintage. "Limited Edition" 75cl bottle picked up and reviewed during a trip to Jacksonville, FL on 2/13/10.

Pours a dark amber color slight red with 2 fingers of tanned head. Fair amount of retaining powers and sticky lace clings on to the glassware. Nose is a bit spicey and includes a bit of orange citrus feel to it. Taste is very similar to the aroma but is quite warming. Light feel with moderate amount of carbonation. Taste continues to be yeasty and a bit spicey as it warms but leaves me with the feeling of expecting more.

Photo of TheJollyHop
3.65/5  rDev -10.5%
look: 3.5 | smell: 4 | taste: 3.5 | feel: 3 | overall: 4

2008 Vintage

Cloudy toffee brown pour with a prominent spicy nose accompanied by some tart cherries.

Candy malt sweetness is noticeable first followed by some tart fruitiness. The fruity quality is a cross between tart cherries and sweet strawberries. Bitterness comes in late, mixing with the tart aftertaste, and leaves hidden underneath the lingering sourness. There is also a faint citrus like bitterness quality to the beer. Alcohol is well hidden with this one.

Carbonation level is lower than what I expected, and the body is on the lighter side. Additionally, the beer is definitely tongue coating. Nevertheless, slightly more carbonation would have helped round out the mouth feel a bit more and I felt the beer could have used more body.

As far as drinkability is concerned, it is not a stand out in my opinion, however it is by no means a drain pour. I could finish a glass however its doubtful given the option to try something else that I would have another.

Photo of Monkeyknife
4/5  rDev -2%
look: 4 | smell: 4 | taste: 4 | feel: 4 | overall: 4

Poured from the bottle a cloudy tea color with a huge amount of floaties present below the healthy off-white head.

Aroma of caramel malts, nuts, candy sugar, holiday spices, and strawberry.

The taste picks up on the aroma with sweet caramel malts, candy sugar, strawberry, spices, and light mocha. The finish is quite clean and the 10% alcohol well-hidden.

Medium bodied and dry with a moderated carbonation.

An easy to enjoy Belgian strong dark ale for the holiday season - even in mid-March.

Photo of Metalmonk
4.53/5  rDev +11%
look: 4.5 | smell: 4 | taste: 5 | feel: 4.5 | overall: 4

2008 edition. Sent by mnwags as a nice surprise in a recent trade.

Murky, muddy look, like dirty old puddle water in a glass; speaking of dirty, the head is a dirty white--fluffy, creamy and producing incredibly clingy lace.

Aroma is a nice melange of exotic spices, milk chocolate, raisin, dark grape, and alcohol. The stronger scents, like spices and alcohol, just barely dominate the mellower and more vinous smells.

The flavor is total complexity and pure Belgian wonder. Unique too. The thyme this is brewed with can be detected, as can a softer cocoa powder element. The thyme doesn't spike out, fortunately, and the 10% alcohol only adds what it should, which is additional spiciness and a welcoming, cozy warmth. Various fermented fruits come to mind also. A hint of mint; healthy dose of orange; even some caraway. All this is swirled together and the result is a mellow beer that is intensely flavorful while not being heavy at all.

The airy and slick mouthfeel only helps matters...it's fairly creamy, mildly carbonated, and slightly sticky. A ghost of citrus bitterness in the finish, along with a consistent layer of smooth and silky cocoa.

WOW. That's about all I can say. This is amazing and a great beery delicacy...as are all the other beers by Achouffe. (Gesundheit!)

Photo of drseamus
4.13/5  rDev +1.2%
look: 4 | smell: 3.5 | taste: 4.5 | feel: 4 | overall: 4

Thanks to aerozeppl and avryle for sharing the growler.

A: Clear brown body, no head, to be expected.

S: Pretty nutty aroma, thin, slight acidity in the nose.

T: Very nutty sweet caramel malt. Some raisin and dark fruits and a little bit of spice in the front. Sweetness lasts long into the aftertaste

M:Very light mouthfeel. Body is almost not sufficient to support the taste. Taste is huge but the body is too light.

D: Better out of the growler then on tap

Photo of aerozeppl
4.1/5  rDev +0.5%
look: 4 | smell: 4.5 | taste: 4 | feel: 4 | overall: 4

Growler split among friends.

A: Fairly clear brown color. Almost has a cola like color. Mininal brown head with a slight touch of lacing.

S: Great nose. Chestnuts. Little bit of spiciness. Little bit of dark fruit around the edges.

T: Really nice taste. Quite a bit of dark fruit. Very nice yeast. Quite a bit of nuts again. Little bit of figs, and dates. Just a touch of spice. Toffee, caramel.

M: Light for the style and the flavor. Good carbonation for a growler.

D: Really nice beer. Not something you get often on tap nevermind a growler. Good drinker best shared with friends.

Photo of TheycallmeTim
4.1/5  rDev +0.5%
look: 3.5 | smell: 3.5 | taste: 4.5 | feel: 4 | overall: 4

2005 750 ml. bottle poured into an Ommegang chalice.

A--Medium chocolate brown body with a small, half finger off-white fizzy head. Bottle flipped out with foam when I opened it, per usual for the brewery, so I'm thinking that zapped the head in the glass. No lacing, no retention.

S--Surprisingly subdued, with boozy raisins and a little bit of prune.

T--Better than the nose. Sticky toffee thick fruit syrup with a marked port character. Dynamic profile, with some boozy heat, thick ripe dark fruits, and that vinous toffee brittle profile you generally associate with port, except with more breadiness. Yeast is spicy and adds yet another layer to this multidimensional brew.

M&D--Both are good. I was glad some of the fizz had gone out before it hit the glass, as something this big and bold probably wouldn't benefit from champagne bubbles. Drinkability is good, in the sense that I'd welcome this after dinner with chocolate and/or a cigar, rather than in the sense that I'm gonna throw back a few bombers.

I'd be interested to see what this is like fresh. Have a feeling the age did it a world of good.

Photo of GRG1313
3.88/5  rDev -4.9%
look: 3.5 | smell: 4 | taste: 4 | feel: 4 | overall: 3.5

Pours a nice clear cinnamon brown with a hint of copper and with a nice off white head.

Nose is very spice and fruity apple and cinnamon/cherry;

Mouthfeel is rich and big and creamy. Mouthfilling.

Flavors of carmel malt dried cherry and big Belgian fruit with undertones of banana;

Finish is all malt, fruit and spices; this is really like a dessert ale! Drinkability is limited only because of the "dessert" quality and problematic food pairing. A full rich drink and a case of the bottle being a bit bigger and richer than the tap.

Photo of rye726
4.4/5  rDev +7.8%
look: 5 | smell: 4.5 | taste: 4 | feel: 4.5 | overall: 5

Vintage '05.

Pours a dark mahogany with a silky beige head. Very nice lace, depth and retention.

Nose has plums, figs, cherries, dates, toffee, caramel, cocoa, thyme, rosemarry and curacao, nutty malts and spicy yeast

Dark pitted fruits, candy malts, peppery herbs, orange peel and Belgian yeast.

Medium body is well carbonated, nice finish.

Photo of ktrillionaire
4.38/5  rDev +7.4%
look: 3 | smell: 4 | taste: 4.5 | feel: 4 | overall: 5

2007 vintage. Wait until this beer is three. It really comes out wonderfully at that age. The difference between two and three years is ridiculous.

A - It pours an ice tea brown, opaque, with a decent tan head, no lacing. So-so.

S - The aroma gives Belgian yeast-imparted impressions of dark fruit, fig, raisin, prune, and grape, with a nicely sweet malt base.

T - Great BSDA taste; leaning more towards the flavor range of a Dubbel as opposed to a Quad. Dark fruit, especially figs, dates, and plums meld with a chocolate-hazelnut flavor that intensifies towards the finish. Small spiciness is available, but it is never intrusive or overwhelming. Virtually no alcohol detected whatsoever. I had this brew, 2007 vintage, last in 2009; it has radically improved in the past year.

M - The feel is good; medium body and nicely spiced finish with no hint of the ABV. Could use more vigor.

D - At three years age, this brew is drinking phenomenal.

Photo of robbyc1
4.13/5  rDev +1.2%
look: 4 | smell: 4 | taste: 4.5 | feel: 3 | overall: 4

Limited Edition 2007, into a Tripel Karmeliet glass.

Huge fluffy head, light brown, big and little bubbles, with lace, gives way to cherry color cloudy body. Looks like a good BSDA.

Nose of deep, dark fruit, plums, apricots, and some spice, the bottle notes it has Thyme and Curacoe Peels. Really nice.

Taste is similar, with a nice depth, not overly complex, but intriguing, the spices light up the taste. Finish is slightly sweet, with no alcohol signs. A tasty winter type warmer.

Mouthfeel is light and a bit fizzy, not the best for this type.

Nice on a Sunday....

Photo of ToasterChef
3.8/5  rDev -6.9%
look: 4 | smell: 3 | taste: 4 | feel: 4 | overall: 4

Reviewed from my notes. Served in a La Chouffe goblet. It has a medium brown color, opaque, with a thin skim of grey bubbles. I couldn't detect much aroma, but it was served pretty cold. It has a slightly sweet flavor, with some caramel notes. There is a lot of carbonation and a medium body. Overall, a pretty interesting beer that was fun to drink, but I don't think I'd order too many. I'm glad I got it on tap instead of in a bottle.

Photo of Zaplt
4.18/5  rDev +2.5%
look: 4.5 | smell: 4.5 | taste: 4 | feel: 4.5 | overall: 4

Limited Edition 2008

Served from a bottle into a la Chouffe tulip.

Appearance - Extremely thick light tan head that leaves very nice lacing. Pours an extremely dark amber/brown color

Smell - Smell is floral, fruity and a dark candy sweet with hints of caramel...

Taste - Highly spiced, delicious - dark maltiness, every so slight alcohol bite, citrus - orange, very spicy in general that works really well with the alcohol (10%), dark sweet flavors - caramel, licorice, *blackberry, very berry-like flavors

Mouthfeel - Pretty carbonated, not overly thick

Overall - A really good brew - well done and delicious. If your not in the mood to try a very spiced winter brew then do not drink this beer. If you are at all you should jump on it as fast as you can.

Photo of coldmeat23
3.9/5  rDev -4.4%
look: 4 | smell: 3.5 | taste: 4 | feel: 4 | overall: 4

GLASS: Snifter
TEMP: Cellared @ approx 50 degrees

This one pours up a dark amber/brown color. An almost three-finger head of light tan colored, fluffy foam sits on top. Retention is fairly good and lacing is craggy/fluffy and nicely sticky.

Great big notes of lots of dark fruits jump out at me first. Loads of raisins and a good deal of caramel malts. Belgian candi sugars, dark and golden brown sugars and both dark and golden caramels all make a showing. The spice level is much more muted than expected.

Lots of raisins, with some toffee and caramel notes thrown in. Mild level of corriander spiciness. The spice presence is more on the back-end than in the flavor. Good, mild level of brown sugar. A fair amount of rich maltiness.

This beer is medium-bodied with a mild-to-medium level of carbonation. It is extremely smooth and has a nice, light, presence of creaminess.

You can feel the 10.0%abv as you make it through the bottle, but you certainly don't taste it. This is very nice, very smooth and nicely drinkable.

Photo of dstc
4.35/5  rDev +6.6%
look: 4.5 | smell: 4 | taste: 4.5 | feel: 4 | overall: 4.5

Pours a nice dark brown, bit murky. Huge light tan head falls rather slow. Sticky lace.

Nice very sweet malt aroma. Picking up raisins and brown sugar. Dark fruits.

Big sweet taste. A lot of malts and sweet fruits. Sugar and chocolate notes. Nice boozy taste too.

Rather full and smooth in the mouth. Boozy tingly, nice.

Awesome dark Belgian ale. Really love this one.

Photo of rarbring
3.95/5  rDev -3.2%
look: 4 | smell: 3.5 | taste: 4 | feel: 4.5 | overall: 4

A dark brown beer, with a small beige head leaving lace in the glass.

The smell is mostly acid notes, sour milk, some sweetness from the malt. But also pungent dusty leathery aromas.

A sweet taste of caramel and dried fruits balanced with a fresh sourness.

The beer has a good carbonation and nice mouthfeel.

Worked very well with sweet saffron bread.

Photo of Lunch
4.03/5  rDev -1.2%
look: 4.5 | smell: 4 | taste: 4 | feel: 4 | overall: 4

Served from a 750ml bottle (2008) purchased at Shangy's in Emmaus, PA into my N'Ice Chouffe goblet at the appropriate temperature (01/09/10).

A: Pours a deep and murky chestnut brown with some ruby hues capped with 2.5 fingers of an off-white with nice retention and some frothy lacing.

S: Pungent bouquet of dark fruit dominated by raisins and sweet caramel. A sweet malt is also present with some Belgian Christmas spice.

T: Dark fruit and sweet malt control the palate with layers of raisin, plum, and a healthy dose of Belgian spice.

M: Medium to full-bodied with smooth and creamy carbonation.

D: Good drinkability especially for a 10% abv. Belgian Strong Dark Ale. The sweetness can be a bit much at times, but it is a nice treat when in the mood.

Overall this N'Ice Chouffe has always been a solid Belgian winter ale and the 2008 is no different. Recommended.

Photo of Travlr
4.33/5  rDev +6.1%
look: 4 | smell: 4.5 | taste: 4.5 | feel: 4 | overall: 4

750 ml bottle, Limited Edition 2007. Also tasted on tap at the brewery
A: Dark red ruby brown with a scant white head.
S: Candy aroma with faint caramel.
T: Malty flavor with spices.
M: Medium effervescent mouth.
D: Very complex, my favorite Christmas ale during a 9-beer tasting of various Belgian Christmas ales.

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.

Photo of pourmeup
3.88/5  rDev -4.9%
look: 4.5 | smell: 3.5 | taste: 4 | feel: 4.5 | overall: 3.5

25.4 oz bottle poured into a pat o'briens have fun snifter! purchased from peabody's beer and wine, boone nc. belgians are not my specialty.

A- a one finger head in the shade of a grayish-brown, the liquid is a dark caramel with plentiful flecks of yeast floating; head retention is somewhat weak but i feel that the lacing makes up for it
S- spice is the undertone here. i feel that the metallic/alcohol notes are so overpowering that not much else can be smelt.
T- slightly lacking in boldness. as with the nose, i feel that the tongue has slightly too much metal/alcohol. i have had higher gravity beers that were smoother than this.
M- this may be the beers strong point. a smooth flow onto the tongue accompanied by a great level of carbonation add character to this beverage. not straight bubbly, but enough bubbles so that you can almost feel them pop in your mouth.
D- theres no way i could drink any more than the 25.4 oz bottle that i purchased. that being said, this is a big bottle.

one person review (calen)

Photo of haddon
4.3/5  rDev +5.4%
look: 3.5 | smell: 4 | taste: 4.5 | feel: 4 | overall: 4.5

A- pours a dark cola color with lots of carbonation. frothy head that doesn't hang around very long.

S- pretty typical for a belgian dark ale. sweet candy, malts, spices & bananas

T- roasted malts, chocolate, dark fruits, yeast, orange peel, very spicey. as it warms... alcohol, bread & banana notes become more evident. very tastey.

M- medium to full body. thick on the palate with good amount of carbonation

D- this beer seems to have a little something extra that sets it apart in a very nice class of beer. really enjoyed this beer. very drinkable for 10% abv. couldn't think of a better beer on this New Year's eve.

Photo of clickpush
4.08/5  rDev 0%
look: 4.5 | smell: 3.5 | taste: 4 | feel: 4.5 | overall: 4.5

Pour: 2008 vintage 750ml bottle to tulip glass. Nice brown body topped by big off-white head. Two fingers depletes slowly. Plenty of carbonation feeding it from below. Body is lightly clouded. Head never fully disappears, good cap of lacing. Some webbing along the glass as I drink it.

Nose: Spicy Belgian yeast complimented by brewing spices. Some tangy citrus, orange specifically.

Mouth: Sharp, lively carbonation. Warm, yeasty body with plenty of fruit flavors. Distinctly Belgian. Pleasantly drinkable. Biscuity, full bodied, chewy. A pleasure to drink.

N'Ice Chouffe from Brasserie d'Achouffe
91 out of 100 based on 934 ratings.