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Noël Des Géants - Brasserie Des Légendes

Not Rated.
Noël Des GéantsNoël Des Géants

Educational use only; do not reuse.
very good

126 Reviews
very good

(Read More)
Reviews: 126
Hads: 184
Avg: 3.8
pDev: 12.11%
Wants: 4
Gots: 10 | FT: 0
Brewed by:
Brasserie Des Légendes visit their website

Style | ABV
Herbed / Spiced Beer |  8.50% ABV

Availability: Winter

Notes & Commercial Description:
Beer added by: HopGoblin on 12-31-2007

No notes at this time.
View: Beers (9) | Events
Beer: Reviews & Ratings
Sort by:  Recent | High | Low | Top Raters | Read the Alström Bros Beer Reviews and Beer Ratings of Noël Des Géants Alström Bros
Reviews: 126 | Hads: 184
Photo of sabrills70
2.55/5  rDev -32.9%
look: 3 | smell: 3 | taste: 2 | feel: 2.5 | overall: 3

Pours a clody copper oranges with a deep thick head that lasted quite a while. Smells of ginger and spices. Taste is a bit one dimentional. It has no body or depth to it. As Belgian ales go this one is pretty light. Its seems like a well made beer I am just looking for more when it comes to a Belgian ale

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Photo of hustlesworth
3.4/5  rDev -10.5%
look: 4 | smell: 4 | taste: 3 | feel: 4 | overall: 3

A- bulbous, shapely, almost dom perignon shaped bottle and a tiny label makes a nice presentation. pours a murky brown that's glowing reddish orange when back-lit. the foam has a light fluffy whipped texture and holds itself pretty good and the lace is very clingy in places, seemingly holding up the foam.

S- interesting herbal fruity/spicy aroma. hardwood notes of hickory and pecan stand behind layers of peppercorn, coriander, lemon zest, and bergamot. there are hints of cinnamon and nutmeg in the background, but not enough to make this beer smell cinnamony or christmasy. brown sugar, toffee, and nutty malt with slightly grassy, i'm assuming, hops. honeyish and floral with earthy nutty yeast once it opens up.

T- this beer has a very unique flavor. it's all at once cinnamon and ginger, very woodsy and earthy with an astringent herbal bitterness that flattens out and lasts longer than and gets in the way of the other flavors. there's some toasty, some nutty, some pepper and anise, pine cone, lemon and orange peel, dates, beeswax (wtf?) and a honey sweetness whose presence is faint, meager, and far out of balance with the contrasting flavors resulting in a watery drop-off after the initial rush of spice, fruit, and grain. finishes like freshly cut almost green wood, the cardboard box that holds my mom's christmas stuff, or your jacket when you leave one of "the countrys largest" christmas stores like the christmas-forsaken one in manteo NC my aforementioned family used to drag me to on vacation. it has the faint hint of cinnamon and spice and the smell of old ornaments that we just can't manage to throw away, all metallic and glass, and dust from the basement, cardboard from the box, funk from the 80's and with pine sap residue built up on the hooks. this could be starting to sound like a wicked christmas burn but it's not.
for one, back then we had real mothachristmas trees, not this plastic (although beautifully decorated) bullchristmas i got next to me in the dining room right now. downside is that's a subdued, background, linger in the wool type flavor, not the robust well rounded BSDA i expect out of a cool-christmas $10 bottle. honestly if you told me a mediocre american brewing company made this beer, i would probably believe you however the sign of expertise is that the alcohol is extremely well hidden behind the floral bitterness, which is 90% olfactory, which is why i'm christmassing in the first place. front half- awesome. back half- blah. this is just a long christmas way to say that i'm on the fence. the freakin snow covered one.

MF- the spicy hot yet cooling feel of ginger (if it's even an ingredient) stings the palate along with the zesty carbonation which is so tight in the glass, that when it hits your christmas mouth it expands the christmas proteins in the the beer or something, turning what once was a watery sip in a instant to a full bodied creamy prickly champagney beer milkshake. maybe it's the pH of my christmas saliva but a howdy ho, cornwallis. dry on the cheeks and especially on the tongue. sticky on the lips and in the mustache that connects to the rest of the beard. becomes alcohol dry with a vodka feel.

D- christmas, my christmas i'm creepin up on a mothachristmas buzz from this bottle when the radiator is right by your computer and it's 18 degrees outside without the wind chill and you spent the last 7 hours in the mall and at kmart and the store with clothes for dogs and you picked up this beer at world market and it was... so-so. rambling on like this makes the bottle go faster, a bottle that i otherwise may have re-corked (capped) and put to the side while i popped that taddy porter that's been winking at me.

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Photo of jlindros
3.8/5  rDev 0%
look: 4 | smell: 4 | taste: 3.5 | feel: 4 | overall: 4

I think this is a couple years old, but with no date its hard to tell.

Pours a fizzy Belgian sticky lacing head fades slowly over super murky yeast chunked dark copper mahogany brown color.

Nose starts with some light Belgian malts, orange peel, light spices, strong Belgian ale aromas, light booze, bright fruit that could be an infection but maybe not.

Taste brings Belgian strong pale ale flavors, Belgian malts and fruity yeast, orange peel and light spices, bright malts and light candi sugar, some warming and tingly booze, little creamy and nutty, no infection, some light paler hips that were probably predominant when it was fresh. Finish is a little drier with lingering spices, coriander, orange peel, etc.

Mouth is med to a little lighter bodied with plenty of carbonation.

Drink is decent with light warming and tingly booze, and spices that come on a little strong but not overpowering, a decent dry finish and for a winter ale not too heavy.

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Photo of Pencible
3.95/5  rDev +3.9%
look: 4 | smell: 4 | taste: 4 | feel: 4.5 | overall: 3.5

A: This poured a hazy light mahogany with moderate light tan head.
S: It smelled like strong rosemary and juniper and other spices, with some citrus zest and a bit of caramel and sour yeast.
T: It tasted super spicy, like rosemary and juniper and cloves among other spices, with a little caramel and candi sugar and citrus zest and sour yeast. It had a very clean and bittersweet aftertaste.
M: It was fairly thick and oily with a little smooth carbonation. Very slick.
D: This was more like mulled cider than beer, but it was quite interesting and tasty. Nice scent and flavor, with great body and no noticeable alcohol, so it was pretty easy to drink. Although, all the spices did become a bit tedious by the end of the glass. This seemed like a beer that would be best fresh, so don't bother cellaring unless you want to really experiment. Great change of pace drink.

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Photo of buffettfan
4.32/5  rDev +13.7%
look: 4 | smell: 4.5 | taste: 4.5 | feel: 4 | overall: 4

Poured from the bottle, into my Allagash glass.

A - Hazy, cloudy amber color body, good thick, off white head, laces well.

S - Spicy and piney, with a sweet caramel, and lots of fruitiness, was that plum??

T - hops surprised me, upfront piney, almost grassy notes. Fruity, carmaly sweetness. dry finish. Quite a bit going on with this beer, more then I was expecting.

M -light and very smooth but flavorful good balance

D- VERY a good holiday ale. Not as heavy, dark and warm as some of my favorite Christmas ales, but a very good one, and I will be getting again!

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Photo of ferrari29
4.1/5  rDev +7.9%
look: 4 | smell: 4 | taste: 4 | feel: 4 | overall: 4.5

Poured into snifter

A - Amber hazy color body, almost apple cider-like in appearance; minimal amount of lacing; plenty of carbonation;

S - Spices aplenty; spruce, pine, and bay leaf aromas come up immediately; there is a hint of grapefruit sourness in the back end; high ABV content comes up to finish off the scent

T - Pine, leafy taste hits the taste buds immediately; complex combination of malts and most importantly - hops; pine zest is followed by a mild dry aftertaste

M - Effervescent and light; a very smooth holiday drink; great blend and well-built beer; a delicate balance of earthy aromas and traditional ale flavors

D - Very good seasonal drink; easy to consume especially with the complex nature of the herbal & earthy ingredients; a perfect drink for the holiday season; highly recommended

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Photo of mexikrainian
3.92/5  rDev +3.2%
look: 3.5 | smell: 4 | taste: 4 | feel: 3.5 | overall: 4

750ml poured into an Ommegang chalice

Appearance: orange-toffee color with short-lived frothy off-white head and patchy lacing.

Aroma: molasses, earthy, fruit and spices.

Flavor: honey, herbal, lightly fruit with bland, dry finish.

Mouthfeel: light-medium body with low-medium carbonation.

Overall impression: unexpected mouthfeel for a Belgian style; reminiscent of a domestic style. subtle alcohol.

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Photo of Beerenauslese
4.1/5  rDev +7.9%
look: 4.5 | smell: 4.5 | taste: 4 | feel: 4.5 | overall: 3.5

Pours a clear, dark copper with an ample 2-finger head that lasts, with lots of lacing.

Smells of dark malt, candy/brown sugar, belgian yeast-style fruit, and spice.

Taste follows the nose. Very sweet dark malt, followed by tropical fruit and ginger. IMO, a meld of a malty German dark ale and a Belgian tripel, with some ginger/coriander spice thrown in.

Body is medium and round bubbly carbonation gives this a creamy mouthfeel.

This is more cloyingly sweet after the first glass. While it is a good offering for the holidays, I'd rather just have one glass and move on to something else. Nevertheless, I did manage to finish the 75 cl bottle over dinner.

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Photo of Kegatron
3.68/5  rDev -3.2%
look: 4 | smell: 3.5 | taste: 3.5 | feel: 4 | overall: 4

On tap @ Teresa's Next Door (Wayne, PA) on 11/24/10. Served in a 10 oz tulip glass.

Pours a crystal clear amber, with a ½ finger cap of bright-white foamy head. Retains with about half of that, leaving a rich cascade of lacing down the sides of the glass. The aroma smells of sugars and bread, with notes of earth and fruit and some definite spicy activity. This is pleasant enough I guess but just doesn't seem to be giving up a whole lot of flavor here.

The taste is doughy and honeyed feeling with sweetness, along some dark fruit accents, and some herbal bitterness. A festive spiciness trails into the finish. The mouthfeel is medium bodied, maybe a little bit fuller feeling, with a prickly carbonation that sits on top some underlying thickness. This stays pretty crisp feeling on the palate for the most part though and this is definitely a nice steady sipper for the size.

This was OK. It definitely had that festive gingerbread cookie/fruit cake thing going on with it that a lot of these Christmas beers seem to shoot for. I don't know. I just didn't get the complexity out of this that some other reviewers did. This was a pleasant but ultimately didn't leave a huge impression on me.

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Photo of woodychandler
4.08/5  rDev +7.4%
look: 4.5 | smell: 4 | taste: 4 | feel: 4.5 | overall: 4

A PHL Beer Week remnant that has, like the previous reviewer's, been sitting awaiting the right moment. Like, now.

From the bottle: "The Brasserie des Legendes is housed in a medieval castle in the town of Irchonwelz, in the French-speaking south of Belgium. Its majestic gate stands high to allow the passage of the occasional visiting giant ... as the town is known for its annual Giants Parade."

I decanted it slowly, ending up with less than a finger's worth of deep-tan head that quickly fizzed its way out of existence and into wisps. Color was a deep coppery-red with NE-plus quality clarity. Nose had a vinous grape-y quality up front along with the chewing tobacco sweetness mentioned by the previous reviewer. Mouthfeel was very full, with a lot of huge carbonic bubbles leading the way. The taste was unique, a blend of raisin, bourbon, tobacco, and lemon zest. Frankly, it was like a cocktail more than a beer. Oh, those crazy Belgians and the crazier Shelton Brothers for importing such beers. Finish combined the lemon zestiness with the vinous quality of the nose for a dryness that would have put many martinis to shame. Phew! This begged for an H2O chaser, I'll tell you. I am all for dry, but this was on a Sahara Desert scale with the Zephyr winds blowing past.

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Photo of BeerImmediately
4.22/5  rDev +11.1%
look: 4 | smell: 4.5 | taste: 4 | feel: 3 | overall: 5

Held on to this one for the past year, and figured it was about time to review yesterday. Split w/ a friend who is a very experienced beer judge and home brewer...

Fat head with great lacing... fairly clear amber-to-brown body.

First impression on the aroma was 'animal' (i.e. dogs and cats)... but after letting it breathe, got some plum and raisin in the aroma. As it warmed, got some strong chewing tobacco quality.

Initial flavors were also unimpressive - started off as unsweetened iced tea, and musty. As it warmed, I picked up some ginger bread and lite tobacco. Decent holiday-spice, but not overpowering. Lot of herbal qualities come thru... almost lavendar like.

Slightly thin (but not watery) on the mouthfeel, which turned me off initially, until I could appreciate all that was going on in this beer. Medium parts sweet and dry, with a light herbal bitterness in the finish.

Drinkabilty was huge - would never have guessed this was 8.5% ABV.

** Recommendation - let this one warm into the high 50's before reviewing. **

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

A solid pour into my 25cl tulip glass produces a three-finger thick, pale amber tinged, tan colored head. The beer is a dark plum color that shows a lightly hazed, red / pale amber hue when held up to the light. The aroma smells spicy (sort of like pepper, coriander and a touch of elderberry) up front backed by fruit and rich malt notes. This smells a bit like a dark, sweet, spicy, holiday sweet bread. The malt has a nuttiness to it and almost smells of port or even sherry in the finish and perhaps even a touch of toasted grain character. There is a sort of over-ripe fruitiness to this beer that isn't quite rancid, definitely interesting, but a bit off-putting too.

Fairly dry as it first hits the tongue, the beer picks up some sweetness as it rolls across the palate; the sweetness contributes to the caramelized grain presence as well as a touch of sherry like character that seems contributed by a bit of oxidation. A touch of spice character in the finish seems a touch like cinnamon and there is an up front note of white pepper as well as some sweetness accentuating clove character that lightly influences the entire flavor profile. The body is pretty light considering the beers alcohol and this is definitely the beers strongest feature. A touch of nuttiness in the flavor takes on a toasted edge towards the finish at times and definitely boosts the complexity a bit more.

Not a bad beer, it is showing a bit of age around the edges and is fairly complex, but seems to be missing a little something to really make it a great beer.

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Photo of FloppyDog
3.55/5  rDev -6.6%
look: 4 | smell: 4 | taste: 3 | feel: 3.5 | overall: 4

Pours a translucent golden copper with a 1/2 finger of white head.

Aroma is of spicy Belgian yeast and cinnamon upfront with candy sweetness and a hint of green apple coming through as afterthoughts. Reminiscent of a homemade apple pie...in beer form.

Taste is sweet with that spicy yeast profile that came through heavily in the aroma. Mild hop flavor and bitterness finish out the taste, which helps lends some balance to the sweetness, but the beer is still on the sweet side overall.

Mouth feel is prickly with very tiny carbonation that helps to lighten up the feel of the otherwise heavy 8.5% beer.

Overall, enjoyable, but can get lost in the crowd of other Belgian beers out there.

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Photo of brewerburgundy
3.73/5  rDev -1.8%
look: 4.5 | smell: 4 | taste: 4 | feel: 3 | overall: 3

11.2oz bottle, Sam Adams glass, no freshness date.

A shade darker and deeper than a hearty IPA, the head isn't large but consistent. There was yeast in the bottle, as there should be, and I poured some but not all.

Other than classic Belgian yeast must, a nasally refreshing wintergreen lends almost physical coolness that can also be perceived as clean lemon. It could also even be clean pine, but not in a hoppy way.

Lemon grass, ginger, smaller wintergreen. Banana and clove via the yeast. This is a nice, complex, controlled beer of this style. Moderate Belgian biscuity malt, a little like its been sitting out in humidity. More cool lemon peel.

There is nothing special other than the flavors in the mouth and it's thin.

I can't taste the alcohol, and because it adds nothing past intoxication potential I can't see why this beer needs to be 8.5% ABV.

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Photo of Stinkypuss
3.94/5  rDev +3.7%
look: 3 | smell: 4 | taste: 4 | feel: 4 | overall: 4

Pours a murky caramel in color with an off white head. Little yeasties hang around. Smells malty, bready and boozey. Tastes chocolatey, some vanilla, plum. Even has some rum raisen notes. Ghost hops add bitterness. Medium to full bodied, a little chalky due to the yeast then finishes dry. Spices have died down to a slight notion . Easily drank, good beer.

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Photo of popery
3.5/5  rDev -7.9%
look: 3.5 | smell: 3.5 | taste: 3.5 | feel: 3.5 | overall: 3.5

This beer doesn't really have enough going on to hate or love. It's just a ho-hum Belgian-style ale with a bit of spice. Pours a bright copper color with a fizzy white head. The aroma is mostly caramel malt, Belgian earthiness, candi sugar and spice (juniper berries?), but it doesn't amount to anything particularly exciting. Flavor is mildly sweet. Mouthfeel is too thin. Actually, the beer is generally fairly weak for 8.5% abv. Not a bad beer but not something I'd recommend with so many excellent Belgian ales around.

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Photo of beerthulhu
3.75/5  rDev -1.3%
look: 3.5 | smell: 3.5 | taste: 4 | feel: 4 | overall: 3.5

- Brewed in Medieval Castle of Irchonwelz.

A: Poured a burnt rustic-orange with a thick haze. The head was soapy, 1 finger high, and quick to dissolve to a patchy covering. The lacing was soapy as well with a weak adherence factor. Against the light reveals a heavy turbidity of macro particles that danced within the glass from the strong carbonation.

S: A bit of sour yeastiness and sour dough is evident first on the nose. Musky fruit of apples and pears come along with a slight sour twang of lemons. Warm cola and dried honey rounds things out.

T: A spicy bite opens things up on the flavor. Musky fruit of apples and pears combine with semi-dry lemons are the most noticeable. Dried honey adds a bit of sweetness while warm pine needles adds a bit of evergreen appeal along with notes of boozy licorice. The finish finds a spiciness of tarragon along with a complimentary maltiness that provides a nice toasted sweetness.

M: The mouthful was bright with a good carbonation factor felt on the tongue. A warm booziness and licorice also comes through on the hold. A good maltiness lies on the tongue with an almost powdery feel.

D: Good for a single serving. The abv is moderate at 8.5%abv provides just the right amount of warmth without hinderance. Warm piney with licorice and dried honey gives this a wintery feel worthy of a try.

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Photo of Farrell
4.4/5  rDev +15.8%
look: 4 | smell: 4 | taste: 4.5 | feel: 4 | overall: 5

Bought randomly from an equally desolate looking establishment, Noel Des Genats turned out to be one of the best winter brews I had and is in serious contention for one of the best beers I have had.

Starting off with a mid brownish hue and an impressive head, this beer incorporated such great flavors as caramelized sugar, plum, raisin, cinnamon, caramel, bread notes, and candied fruits all with a mild hop finish. If I were to make a comparison, it had a similar taste profile as Rochefort 10, but was lighter, smother, and more drinkable.

My only regret is that I only bought one bottle and will most likely have to wait until next Christmas to drink it again.

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Photo of ChainGangGuy
3.5/5  rDev -7.9%
look: 3.5 | smell: 3.5 | taste: 3.5 | feel: 3.5 | overall: 3.5

Appearance: Pours a lightly hazed, amberesque body with a airy, meringue-like, whitish head.

Smell: The modest aroma has an overall earthy quality to it, sporting notes of caramel and stale dark bread, with undercurrents of herbs, spice, and, at least for me, a notable grape fruitiness.

Taste: Dry, dark maltiness pass along some tastes of dark bread and dark caramel. The flavor is accented by a seemingly dried herbal flavor. Touch of spiciness reminiscent of cinnamon, though it seems no actual spices were harmed in the brewing of this beer. Belgian yeastiness. More of that bold, fruity grape juice character carrying over from the nose, more easily gleaned on the amply carbonated, drying finish that provides a bit more spiciness and some alcohol warmth.

Mouthfeel: Medium-bodied. Medium-high carbonation with a light, lively mouthfeel.

Drinkability: It does display a curious complexity, but I simply didn't care for the particular mix of flavors going on in this one -- like a first date where there was just no connection, no spark. However, it's one I may potentially revisit in the Winter of this new year. Look! I'm putting in on my 365 Days of Puppies calendar this very moment (Dec. 5th, a Golden Retriever pup)!

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Photo of PreacherBrewer
4.42/5  rDev +16.3%
look: 4 | smell: 4.5 | taste: 4.5 | feel: 5 | overall: 4

A - pours a murky brownish orange color with a generous tan head.

S - yeasty, dried fruit, spices...

T - fermented apple cider/various aged fruit drinks. spices are abundant. very slight floral hop bite hits you on the aftershock. pretty complex. lots going on.

M - to me, this is the beers highlight. it's got such a unique mouthfeel that IMHO it's in it;s own league. bubbly, soft, ticklish, yet full. it makes this beer what it is. lovely stuff.

D - overall, what a great brew. this is a very solid beer with a lot going on. it's not your every-day kinda beer. even for a belgian! it's unique. thats what i like about it. i will be visiting this one again for sure.

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Photo of wangbruins
3.47/5  rDev -8.7%
look: 3.5 | smell: 4 | taste: 3.5 | feel: 3 | overall: 3

A- Nice caramel brown with a very hazy hue, decent head, a little thin, and the lacing is ok

S- Cherries and maple syrup with a little bit of smoke. It has a subtle sweet scent

T- Lots of brown sugar and a very small smoked nut flavor but the sweetness is very powerful

M- Good body but very oily...it's a very sugary beer

D- It's a good sipper but more than two would be a stretch

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Photo of Clydesdale
3.95/5  rDev +3.9%
look: 3.5 | smell: 3.5 | taste: 4 | feel: 4 | overall: 4.5

A: Pours a hazy, translucent burnt orange color. The off-white head is tall with a foamy, somewhat dense texture. Retention is solid, with some moderate patches of lacing along the glass.

S: A somewhat tangy/fruity, yeasty Belgian nose, with hints of sugar and spiciness. An interestingly herbal twang is also present, with an almost gingery note.

T: Some lightly caramel malt notes, with a bit of Belgian sugar to boot. A modest fruitiness recalls pear peel and raisins. A mild spiciness (clove) is present before fading into an herbal finish. I get significant notes of ginger and cinnamon as well.

M: A medium bodied beer with fairly perky carbonation providing a pleasant liveliness. The finish is a bit dry, with a slight hint of alcohol.

D: This is a tasty spiced beer. I was tempted to pick this up in December, but I waited and snagged a single for $1.50, which was a steal. A spicy, complex winter seasonal that scores points for originality.

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Photo of jjayjaye
4.12/5  rDev +8.4%
look: 4 | smell: 4.5 | taste: 4 | feel: 4 | overall: 4

Pours a hazy iced tea color with a full finger loose light tan colored head that fades quickly leaving spotty patterns of lacing. The smell is really nice and complex; an aggressive earthy fruity fig apple and caramel. A nice amount of creamy effervescence, bright and tangy, the mouth feel is medium-full bodied. The flavors aren't as pronounced as the nose, but the earthy harvest fruit and caramel characteristics are savory. The 8.5% ABV is a bit of a warmer, but otherwise well integrated. I recommend giving this one a spin.

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Photo of rtratzlaff
4.05/5  rDev +6.6%
look: 4 | smell: 4 | taste: 4.5 | feel: 3.5 | overall: 3.5

A 355 ml bottle poured into a Goblet produces an unfiltered amber to red body (odd for a proclaimed Belgian Strong Dark Ale by the shelf talker at Total Wine). The head is off white and a bit small but still chunky.

The aroma is sweet bready malt, slightly sour, fruity, and grainy.

The flavor is much less malty and more spice than expected. There is also a slight tart character in there that I was not expecting. The alcohol is slightly present but that is okay for the style I guess. With warmth notes of dark fruit, clove spice pull through a bit stronger.

Mouthfeel is lush and fluffy as the best Belgians are with more than ample carbonation.

This is certainly not a beer to session at 8.5 abv, but would be a nice sipper with a meal. Christmas dinner perhaps?

This beer is called Christmas of the Giants because it is brewed in the Irchonwelz castle in Irchonwelz Belgium. The Gate stands high to allow the passage of the ocassional visiting giant. My visit with this giant was a good one and at 1.99 a 355 ml I might just have to revisit it again.

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Photo of JoeyBeerBelly
4/5  rDev +5.3%
look: 4 | smell: 4 | taste: 4 | feel: 4 | overall: 4

11.2oz bottle served in a chalice.

Cloudy dark brown with a foamy beige head that stayed as a cap fueled by rising bubbles, rings of lacing left behind.
Aroma is somewhat yeasty with a light cinnamon, nutmeg and other spices.
Taste is good and malty with the yeast and spices being subtle.
Medium bodied with good carbonation, crisp.
Good drinkability.

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Noël Des Géants from Brasserie Des Légendes
85 out of 100 based on 126 ratings.