1. American Craft Beer Fest returns to Boston on May 29 & 30, featuring 640+ beers from 140+ brewers. Tickets are on sale now.

N'Ice Chouffe - Brasserie d'Achouffe

Not Rated.
N'Ice ChouffeN'Ice Chouffe

Educational use only; do not reuse.
BA SCORE
91
outstanding

971 Ratings
THE BROS
93
outstanding

(view ratings)
Ratings: 971
Reviews: 471
rAvg: 4.08
pDev: 9.8%
Wants: 45
Gots: 122 | 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:
Beer added by: Bierman9 on 12-14-2001

No notes at this time.
Beer: Ratings & Reviews
Sort by:  Recent | Likes | High | Low | Top Raters | Read the Alström Bros Beer Reviews and Beer Ratings of N'Ice Chouffe Alström Bros
Ratings: 971 | Reviews: 471 | Display Reviews Only:
Photo of Brad007
4.18/5  rDev +2.5%
look: 4 | smell: 3.5 | taste: 4.5 | feel: 4 | overall: 4.5

Pours a reddish-brown color with a two-finger head that leaves some lacing in my pint glass.

Aroma is thick and full of dark fruit and spice with a bit of raisin. Not too overpowering.

Taste is very smooth with a bit of sweet malt and raisin upfront followed by only a bit of spice. A bit chewy as well . Seems right for the style.

Mouthfeel is chewy with a nice amount of raisin and even some alcohol heat (which is well-hidden otherwise).

Despite the holiday theme, this is one nice beer. Highly drinkable and that can be dangerous if you don't realize that it's 10%. Otherwise, pick it up. You could age it as well and it would likely improve anyway.

Photo of talkinghatrack
3.63/5  rDev -11%
look: 4.5 | smell: 4 | taste: 3.5 | feel: 3 | overall: 3.5

Limited Edition 2007 bomber, consumed Feb 2009

a- nice red-orange spectrum in my tulip glass. Two finger head.

s - This is a strange on. I didn't get much of anything on this one on the first pour while cold other than some metallic, malt, and alcohol notes. The thyme and peel scent comes out as it warms - but so does the alcohol. I prefer the fruity warm scent.

t - Average Belgian malts and sour finish. Maybe a hint of citrus and spice. Decent ABV masking until it presents itself strong at the finish.

m - Malty yet thin body with good medium carbonation while cold. Carbonation drops off quickly as it warms.

d - At first I was ready to rate this as an average bomber and decent-at-best draft option if found in a bar. Once the bottle warmed up a bit the smell and flavor get a lot deeper but the alcohol masking weakens. The ABV hit on the finish is harsh and raw. I probably won't buy it again.

Photo of becktone
4.42/5  rDev +8.3%
look: 4 | smell: 4.5 | taste: 4.5 | feel: 4 | overall: 4.5

2007 vintage

From notes 11-26-08

Eye: The beer pours a very dark red or garnet if you will, that is when light passes through it. When just sitting on the desk/table it is a dark brown. The brew is clear and forms a very large tan pillowy-rocky-foamy head when poured. Retention is pretty good, as it begins to recede it leaves some nice lacing.

Nose: Citrus notes are evident, one can't deny the use of curacao in this brew. Also a strong spicy yet green aroma..mint-like almost...it puts the picture of fresh green leaves in my head, this has to be the thyme. This leafy aroma (which I assume to be thyme) reminds me alot of the resin/sap that gets on one's fingers when tearing certain leaves apart, or tearing the stems of small green plants apart..really quite an herbal smell, fresh and green. Slight spicy peppery notes under all of this. Alcohol is extremely well hidden, that or it blends so well with these aromas that I can't pick it out. Just got some dark fruit aromas in this brew, plums, some of that sweet dark malt aroma is coming through as well. Overall a very appealing aroma, quite unique...really interested and excited to taste this brew.

Tongue: Definitely some nice dark malt flavors in here as well as dark fruit flavors. It finishes with that green leafy flavor-thyme...long lasting herbal flavor that stays in the mouth once the beer has been swallowed. Alcohol mingles with it close to the finish to produce what almost feels like fresh mint-a little warming and also refreshing. Curacao is one of the first things detected, its right there upfront on the tip of the tongue, that orange flavor is unmistakable. The more I get to drinking this the harder it becomes to taste the dark malt flavors and dark fruit while the curacao and herbal qualities along with some alcohol notes begin to stand out more. The curacao really adds a nice touch here, I'm thinking that it was the intended primary flavor, real nice. Very unique and quite enjoyable.

Feel and Drinkability: The beer has a certain weightiness to it. It comes with the curacao flavor, a certain thick and heavy quality that makes the brew feel full bodied. Carbonation is almost undetectable, a quality that fits this beer well, and something that I feel gives the impression of a heavier body. As aforementioned it slightly warms the mouth and the throat as it goes down. This brew's got a dry finish with some peppery spiciness to it. This is one that I'll have no problem finishing, I look forward to it. As a matter of fact I think that I might just add this to my line up of brews to go with Thanksgiving dinner. Its that good, this is the first time I've had it and I'd really like to see how it goes with dinner tomorrow. Very drinkable, and one of the most unique Belgian Strong Darks that I've ever drank. Real good and dangerously drinkable. Get your hands on this one. Don't know how it is fresh, but I can tell you that at a year old it is drinking real nice.

Photo of blakesell
3.6/5  rDev -11.8%
look: 3 | smell: 3 | taste: 4 | feel: 4 | overall: 3.5

This bottle is a 2006 vintage dug up from cellar #1. Cellared in near perfect conditions, poured from the 750ml bottle into a Belgian chalice.

Appearance- Cap makes an audible hiss but not much carbonation rises up the neck of the bottle. Beer pours a dark brown and amber with a slim head of carbonation a mere half finger of foam that quickly subsides to a light ring around the sides. Lacing is medium light and hardly clings to the sides of the glass.

Smell- Light malts (on a dark looking beer), no hops, a strong lactic sour smell that is only somewhat pleasant on the nose. none of the expected citrus, but a bit of light fruits. Huge yeasty notes that aren't unpleasant at all. A nutty oxidation smell also lingers on the nose.

Taste- Yeasty and oxidized, but the flavor here is much more pleasant than the smell and appearance. Lovely sweet brown malts, light subdued hops, a bitterness that seems more from the orange peel than the hop, a spicy alcohol warming from the yeast. The oxidation benefits the beer slightly.

Mouthfeel- Warming, downright hot, not sticky or gluey for the high alcohol. highly carbonated on the tongue, and medium high in body.

Drinkability- Very nice, but not something I would vintage age and try again. I'll be going for a fresher bottle next time.

Keep lugging that malt gnomes.

Photo of thekevlarkid
4.12/5  rDev +1%
look: 3.5 | smell: 4 | taste: 4.5 | feel: 3.5 | overall: 4

Off the tap at American Flatbread this beer was a deep copper color with a cream-colored head. The retention was good as an oil-on-water skim and the lacing was patchy. The aroma was of caramel malt, roasted malt, Belgian yeast, figs and currants. The flavors were distinctly sweet and pungent, big caramel malt, toffee, black cherries, hints of coffee, dark fruits, light chocolate, hints of white pepper, some wood and at the very end I got tart yeast. The 10% was well-concealed but it did make itself present in a bourbon-like way. Generally sweet but not quite cloying. The mouthfeel was semi-smooth, the body medium/full and the carbonation a little too soft. A true example of the style and a challenging brew.

Photo of SRossman
4.32/5  rDev +5.9%
look: 4 | smell: 4.5 | taste: 4.5 | feel: 4 | overall: 4

A: Dark brown with a burnt orange tint. Looks deep when raised to the light, at the fullest point of the glass, light doesn't penetrate the liquid. Nice foamy head builds up about an inch and a half and slowly settles to about a 1/4 inch and stays.
S: Some interesting spices as the bottle suggests. I also detect some dark fruit which I imagine is a product of the yeast. At 10% abv I expected a little more heat here. It's masked pretty well.
T: Dry with some very bright carbonation. Very smooth, again, alcohol is masked dangerously well. Some more dark fruit comes through and the spices are there in full effect. Nice and full bodied as well. This is so well balanced.
D: It's scary how well this goes down. One bottle is more than enough for me. All around very well crafted beer.

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

I poured this one from a 750ml champagne-style green bottle into my Duvel tulip snifter. This bottle was from 2007.

A= This ale poured a very cloudy medium brown cola color with a 2" lively tan head. The head slowly receded leaving a 1/8" cap and a few spots of lace.

S= Aromas were a complex blend of sweet dark malts and orchard fruit up front (apples and pears mostly). Some spice in the nose as well as an earthy hop character. Fairly high alcohol presence in the smell too.

T= Like the nose, the taste started of sweet and fruity (more apples and pears) but quickly brought a faint sourness and solid spices as well. The spices were reminiscent of holiday desserts, with a faint cinammon and nutmeg quality to them. The earthy hops and the funkiness of the yeast add even more depth of flavor. The finish was dry and a bit warm in the alcohol department. All within a comfortable range though. Nice and complex.

MF= On the big side of medium bodied, with a nice effervescent carbonation and crisp mouthfeel.

D= Definitely a great winter warmer from Belgium. The flavors and the alcohol in this just scream out to be enjoyed by a roaring fire in the dead of winter. Though it could still have used another year of aging, this was a damn interesting and drinkable beer at almost 2 years old.

Photo of brewcrew76
4.35/5  rDev +6.6%
look: 4 | smell: 4 | taste: 4.5 | feel: 4.5 | overall: 4.5

A - Hazy amber with a thin off whte head.

S - Fruity, apples and pears, spicy, belgian yeast and citrus.

T - Sweet, spicy, cloves, raisins, candi sugar and other spices.

M - Medium body and smooth.

D - A little more spicy than a regular belgian strong dark but very tasty.

Photo of brewandbbq
4.32/5  rDev +5.9%
look: 4 | smell: 4.5 | taste: 4.5 | feel: 4 | overall: 4

Vintage 1998, 750ml bottle at 52 degrees.

Pours dark ruby with a mahogany hue. Sparkling clarity and a two inch head swelled up in the tulip glass. A slow retreat of the off-white foam lead the way for splattered walls of clingy lace and a solid skim-coat on the surface.

Dark fruit, grape jam, plump malt, hard candies, and rum soaked raisins start the nose. Hints of cherries, orange oil, and peppery spice follow through.

Medium bodied with a sticky, tacky mouthfeel. Slightly chewy and creamy.

Sweet malt, stone fruits, dark rum, and red grapes lead off the palate. A warming boozy note steps forward as well as orangy overtones, rum-drizzeled dough, and plump raisins.

Finishes with a lingering warmth, red fruits, sweet malt, and a hint of menthol way in the back.

The only hint of oxidation was a faint carboard whiff I got when I first opened the bottle. None coming from the glass though, and this beer is in remarkable shape for being 11 years old.
A lot of boozy quad-like overtones, which I've never gotten from this beer before.

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

I had this on tap at High Street Grill. It was presented in a La Chouffe glass, very dark with a thin white head. The aroma was malty sweet, but otherwise unremarkable. The flavor was sweet and slightly phenolic, I did not notice the thyme. A medium bodied beer that is deceptive for its 10% abv.

Photo of Kraken
3.08/5  rDev -24.5%
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.

Photo of IronDjinn
3.53/5  rDev -13.5%
look: 4 | smell: 3.5 | taste: 3.5 | feel: 3.5 | overall: 3.5

From a green 750 ml capped magnum. Pours out a murky brown colour, topped by a tall cinnamon head that slowly settles to a thick frothy cap.

Potent aroma of dates and raisins, dark sugary malt.

Sweet, nearly cloying flavour profile of dark dried fruits, some very mild phenol spice. Sweetness overshadows the rest of the flavour characteristics which dampens any complexity to be found. It's not bad, but it doesn't stand out.

Medium-bodied mouthfeel, smooth and silky slick, a bit thinner than I expected but it suits the flavour.

I chalk this up as a good entry level into the style, not too intimidating at all, baby steps all the way, yet still delivers the goods.

Photo of kmo1030
4.35/5  rDev +6.6%
look: 4 | smell: 4 | taste: 4.5 | feel: 4.5 | overall: 4.5

right before i opened this i relized that this is the 2005 editon. i picked it up just before christmas, so it seems that i may have gotten pretty lucky, as this beer would surely hold up for a few years.
pours a a deep dark garnet tinted brown, with a moderate creamy white head.
the aroma is of ripe dark fruit, hints of citrus, with touches of brown/candy sugar here and there. overall, very subdued though. bits of yeast and alcohol.
the taste is sweet, but not sugary starting with raisins and plum and moving into a just a faintly brown sugar tinged spiced oranged flavor. you can really taste the orange peel they put in here and it's fantastic. there are hints of chocolate and a growing sense of molasses with warmth. i have to search for the thyme, i think i find it in a herbal flavor towads the finish and aftertaste. just a bit port-like, but far more subdued. actually the thyme comes out as it approached room temp playing off some of the sweeter aspect to excellent effect.
the mouthfeel is a touch lighter than full bodied with soft carbonation. creamy smooth.
the drinkability is uncanny given the abv. drinks like beer with half the booze. a little too sweet for a flawless 5 though. in any case an excellent winter beer. finish the bottle by myself tonight? don't mind if i do.

Photo of jsanto
4.15/5  rDev +1.7%
look: 4.5 | smell: 4.5 | taste: 4 | feel: 4 | overall: 4

A. excellent caramel color with a nice creamy head in a tulip chouffe glass.

S. orange and spice and alcohol.

t. i think it is a little licorice finish, which i enjoyed, but the first tast was a little alcohol and spice /orange.

M. a little carbonation at first, but i let it sit awhile, then the carbonation faded, and refilled my glass for some fresh christmas cheer.

d. just once a year, as a christmas celebration, very drinkable.

Photo of MurphyMacManus
4.2/5  rDev +2.9%
look: 4 | smell: 4 | taste: 4.5 | feel: 4 | overall: 4

750ml green glass bottle, dated 2007. Poured into snifter.

A: Mahogany, with a cream-colored head that is a bit small for the style. (Age?) But the head does stick quite a bit to the sides of the glass and dissipates very slowly.

S: Dark fruit, generally sweet, malty, some citrus, and whiskey-like alcohol as it warms.

T/M: Medium body, highly carbonated. Tastes sweet and spicy (can definitely taste whatever they spice it with), fruity, and mildly alcoholic -- alcohol flavor closer to brandy than whiskey. So I'm guessing the sweet and fruity (at least the dark fruit) are from the malt, while the citrus notes are from the orange, and the spicy flavour is from the hops, yeast, and spices in there. Alcohol is self-explantory.

D: Very drinkable. Goes down smooth, not too sweet or too dry. A traditional session (about 8 pints in 4 hours) with this would probably result in difficulty standing up straight, if not visions of pink elephants -- but I don't think a session beer is what the brewer was going for. As such, this one is highly drinkable.

Photo of ryandurka
4.37/5  rDev +7.1%
look: 4 | smell: 4.5 | taste: 4.5 | feel: 4.5 | overall: 4

strong big taste beer. i like this seasonal beer. its dark and has a thick chocolaty taste. its a strong beer so drinkadility wise, i think 1 or 2 of these and i would be maxed out for a while or until i got some food. best part of this beer for me were the particles in the very last sip.

Photo of Absumaster
4.2/5  rDev +2.9%
look: 4 | smell: 4 | taste: 4.5 | feel: 4 | overall: 4

A redbrown beer with a big bubbly head that seems to fade in a couple of minutes.

Smell is mslty with hints of honey and spices. There is a sweet orange peel smell. Also hints of dark candisugar.

Taste is sweet and malty with strong candisugar notes. The alcohol adds a nice and warming feel to the beer. This is a strong sucker with 10%. In this beer there is a honey-like taste. The apparent spices of thime and orange peel are only a subtle addition, which are hard to pinpoint, only a flint of spice.

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

Picked this up at 5割引 (50% off) from a Japanese import store on Boxing day. Deal!

Appearance: Deep, crimson red

Smell: Not dissimilar to a Christmas fruit cake, with the aroma of cherry prevailing

Taste: How a Christmas beer SHOULD taste. One sip brings back youthful Christmas nostalgia. Candied cherries, dates, LOTS of spicing that I can't quite pick apart. Magnificent

Mouthfeel: Smooth

Drinkability: This is the best Christmas beer I've ever had. I hope I can pick some up well into January!

Photo of elricorico
4.37/5  rDev +7.1%
look: 4 | smell: 4.5 | taste: 4.5 | feel: 3.5 | overall: 4.5

Deep hazy red with the typical big belgian head. Reasonable retention and plenty of lacing.

Aroma is fruity, yeasty and a bit spicy. Apples and pears both come to mind, unusual for my nose. Orange zest, coriander and just a touch of pepper. Nothing over the top, but lots of nice stuff.

Syrupy body carries a caramel candy sweetness to the front of the tongue. The middle opens uo to a selection of fruits, still mostly sweet but starting to dry. Cherries most prominent. Finish is spicy and dry, with just a hint of heat from the liquor.

As mentioned, the body is a bit syrupy. Carbonation falls just a bit flat in the middle, but overall the mouthfeel isn't bad.

More than drinkable, this is a treat. This beer has been on my "look out for" list for years, and did not dissapoint.

Photo of bark
3.69/5  rDev -9.6%
look: 3 | smell: 4 | taste: 4 | feel: 3.5 | overall: 3

Vintage 2008 (I think, bbe 29/08/2010)

The beer pours with a fizzing sound. The colour is dark brown; the liquid is a little cloudy (the beer is bottle conditioned). The two finger off white head sinks to a thin uneven lid.

The smell is sweet-tart and a bit fruity. Balsamic vinegar, cherries, yeast and a hint of wax.

The taste is sweet, fresh and fruity, almost like lemonade. Lemon zest, yeast, nuts, hints of coke, dry cherries, brown sugar and plum jam. The aftertaste got sweet notes of canned fruits, toffee, cherries and a dry-tart flavour in the finish.

The carbonation is fresh with some sharp mid-sized bubbles. The liquid is quite light and dry.

An OK "dessert beer" with a refreshing tart flavour. Maybe it will be better after a few years' cellaring.

Photo of brentk56
3.85/5  rDev -5.6%
look: 4 | smell: 4 | taste: 4 | feel: 3.5 | overall: 3.5

Limited Edition 2005 (consumed 12/20/08)

Appearance: Pours a dark amber color with a frothy top most of which disappears, although the cap lasts a while and leaves some lace

Smell: The candi sugar jumps out in the aroma, which also displays an herbacious character from the thyme and curaçao peel; spice cake aroma, too

Taste: Opens with a spice cake flavor, with the herbacious bitterness taking over by mid-palate; after the swallow, the herbal flavors dominate, although there is plenty of raisiny residual sugar on the tip of the tongue

Mouthfeel: Medium body with low to moderate carbonation

Drinkability: This doesn't have the lively mouthfeel of most Belgians and perhaps that is due to its age, and I have to say that while the herbs add an interesting element to the beer, they aren't that enjoyable an adjunct to me

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

2007 bottle.

reddish amber hued chocolatey brown pour with lots of junk swimming around in it. it's crowned by a creamy frothy tan head.

lots of candi sugar and orange jump out of the aroma. that's followed by a touch of spiciness, dark fruit, grass, earth and dirty thyme notes.

loads of dark sugar richness on the palate but it is not overly sweet. a pleasant bitterness throughout keeps it very enjoyable... flavors of candied orange peel, nutty chocolate, rich malt and medjoul dates come forward before a spicy warm alcoholic finish. the thyme is much more noticeable mid palate and in the aftertaste than in the aroma. it's certainly full bodied and very rich yet it still maintains drinkability.

there's a fundamental comfort with the thyme...?
8/4/8/4/15/3.9

Photo of meatmallet
4.31/5  rDev +5.6%
look: 4.5 | smell: 3.5 | taste: 5 | feel: 4 | overall: 4

Appearance: Deep reddish brown with a huge tan head that left a thick ring of lace up and down the glass.

Smell: Very light on the nose. Rasins and dates with a light alcohol smell.

Taste: Thick and slick in the mouth with a great alcohol at the end. Spice and yeast with dark fruit flavors give it a complex flavor.

Mouthfeel/drinkability: High carbonation and a great alcohol burn make this a great beer for the style.

Photo of MisterClean
3.43/5  rDev -15.9%
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.

Photo of madtowndmb1
4.15/5  rDev +1.7%
look: 4 | smell: 4 | taste: 4.5 | feel: 3.5 | overall: 4

I split this bottle with two friends tonight. It poured a chestnut brown with a fairly foamy head. The smell was mostly spices and a touch of candi sugar. The taste was good, alot of wondeful spices and a nice rounding off of raisins, sugar and spices. Almost tasted spicy for a split second. It went down smooth but I'm glad I split three ways. I would recommend you try this! Very nice winter warmer here

N'Ice Chouffe from Brasserie d'Achouffe
91 out of 100 based on 971 ratings.