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Leffe Radieuse - Abbaye de Leffe S.A.

Not Rated.
Leffe RadieuseLeffe Radieuse

Educational use only; do not reuse.
very good

129 Reviews
no score

(Send Samples)
Reviews: 129
Hads: 278
Avg: 3.79
pDev: 21.9%
Wants: 22
Gots: 64 | FT: 0
Brewed by:
Abbaye de Leffe S.A.
Belgium | website

Style | ABV
Belgian Strong Dark Ale | 8.20% ABV

Availability: Year-round

Notes & Commercial Description:
Beer added by: BeerAdvocate on 11-30-2001

No notes at this time.
View: Beers (17) | Events
Beer: Reviews & Ratings
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Reviews: 129 | Hads: 278
Photo of philphilphil
3.11/5  rDev -17.9%
look: 4 | smell: 3 | taste: 3 | feel: 3.5 | overall: 3

pours a deep red colour, with decent off white head, goes off quickly though.
Smells of cloves and spice, not a bad smell.
Tastes of the same.
Mouthfeel isnt good like the leffe blonde, but still decent.
Drinkability is less than blondel,but okay, woyldnt buy again.

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Photo of eric5bellies
4.13/5  rDev +9%
look: 4 | smell: 3.5 | taste: 4.5 | feel: 4.5 | overall: 4

A - This beer pours a dark brown transparent colour with an off white head that retains well. 4.0

S - Sweet cherries and yeast. 3.5

T - Really nice spice and biscuit flavours that give way the a nice blanced cherry flavours.
Nice warm alcohol flavour, and spicey kick at the end. 4.5

M - Low carbonation but nice fizz at the end with a light to medium body. Very smooth 4.5

D - Top quality Belgian abbey ale with heaps of charachter.4.0

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Photo of xylophonica
3.66/5  rDev -3.4%
look: 4.5 | smell: 3.5 | taste: 3.5 | feel: 3.5 | overall: 4

Poured from a 33cl bottle into a tulip glass.

A - Deep, dark mahogany/ruby colour. About 2.5 fingers of head. Lacing is excellent.

S - Lots of wood and some clove. Alcohol content not really detectable.

T - Cherry and clove at first. Some woody tannins coming through. Aftertaste is creamy and soothing. Alcohol content is apparent but without the phenolic sensation.

M - Slightly bitter on the tongue at the start but soft & creamy textures coming through later.

D - This is really a balance between the alcohol content and the creaminess... very easy to drink one or two but beyond that I'm not certain. Would be enjoyable while it lasted though!

Again a quality beer from the Leffe stable but not the pick of the bunch.

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Photo of dgilks
3.58/5  rDev -5.5%
look: 4 | smell: 3.5 | taste: 3.5 | feel: 4 | overall: 3.5

Bready yeast aroma with a light underlying spiciness and graininess.

Hazy, chestnut colour with a fluffy, off-white head. Decent head retention.

Unfortunately, it taste a bit oxidised with some cardboard notes, rounded malt flavour, touches of spice, banana and spicy alcohol. Decent.

Medium body with moderately-high carbonation.

A reasonable Belgian strong with a fair bit going on but it lacks a bit of X-factor for me.

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Photo of gyllstromk
4/5  rDev +5.5%
look: 4 | smell: 4 | taste: 4 | feel: 4 | overall: 4

Pours very clear red with moderate head. Nose is fruity, with caramel notes and some cinnamon or nutmeg. Palette is a well balanced malt body with a bit of caramel sweetness, and nice spices on the finish. A moderately thick feel with well hidden alcohol. Seems sessionable, but probably should not be sessioned!

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Photo of biegaman
3.65/5  rDev -3.7%
look: 4 | smell: 4 | taste: 3.5 | feel: 3.5 | overall: 3.5

Goodness gracious great balls of fire! By that I am referring to both the beer's fiery, well kindled amber tone as well as its sprightly and stalwart head that literally forced its way out the top of the bottle before I could even bring the glass near. This is one visibly spirited, hot-blooded beer and I love the way it looks all furnished in light.

I don't know that Leffe has been around since 1240 (as their labels claim) but I'd believe that the yeast they use has. It is seasoned, fervid and stratified into parts spicy, savory and fruity. It leaks hints of spice (clove, cinnamon) and the underlying malts briefly suggest custard and burnt sugar, or creme brulee as it's more eloquently known as.

It's usually at this point in sampling a Leffe product that I am let down. The proper physique, the enticing bouquet - it all adds up to nothing if the beer tastes of corn and malt extract, as more often than not these beers do. Leffe Radieuse, I'm sorry to say, is really no exception. The beer's flavours are timid and insipid.

Drinking this beer is like working my way through a box of stale chocolates somehow left-over from two Christmas' ago. There's the rubbery, plastic-like caramel chocolate, the now stale, powdery almond one, the long festered cherry-centered chocolate as well as the questionably toxic brandy-filled one. The chocolate itself is flavorless.

More malt (and better quality malt) is definitely what the doctor ordered. This mouthfeel is every bit as limp as the flavour is insipid. InBev is saving money somewhere - either skimping out on the grains or watering down their batches, the texture suggests they may even be doing both. Corn and ethanol roll on in what is an astringent aftertaste.

Leffe isn't bad beer; it's great beer compromised down to merely OK beer. I don't know what it tasted like in the 700 plus years before it was bought out by brewing giant InBev but I'd bet it depreciated significantly in the time since. I've never had a Leffe beer I didn't like - but I've never had one I cared enough for to want to have again neither...

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Photo of StJamesGate
3.88/5  rDev +2.4%
look: 4 | smell: 3.5 | taste: 4 | feel: 4 | overall: 4

Pours brown-garnet with a loose tawny head. Port on the nose. Spice cake malts with some prune followed by minty hops. Lively carbination, medium body, some heat.

Not sure where this fits in the portfolio, since it's a BSDA and stronger than the Brune, yet lighter and paler.

Easy drinker for the ABV, though.

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Photo of Reinheitsgebot71
3.82/5  rDev +0.8%
look: 3.5 | smell: 4 | taste: 4 | feel: 3.5 | overall: 3.5

I got this one as part of the Leffe gift pack released by the LCBO this past holiday season, it's pretty much the only reason I picked up said package.

A clear dark copper/bronze colour greets me in the Leffe branded glass, hints or ruby also flicker in the light. A small white head does not last especially long dissipating disappointingly quickly though it does leave some reasonable lacing.

A powerful bouquet of spice and fruity esters hits the nose rapidly spurred on by high amounts effervescence. Citrus and cardamom mix with hints of star anise and cinnamon. Grapefruit and kumquat provide a light refreshing quality; sour grape and blackberry esters add some interesting yeasty fermented complexity. A mild malt tone provides the backbone for the palate.

Spice cake is what first comes to mind after the first sip. Cumin, allspice and cinnamon mingle with syrup like malt sweetness which becomes slightly cloying at times. Herbal flavours, notably tarragon, add a slight earthy feel. Plum notes add a fruity feel while that of fermenting dates provides a rich, slightly sour yeasty quality. Bitterness from the hops but more notably the alcohol rounds out the taste, the alcohol especially lingering with the sweetness providing a boozy liqueur like sensation.
A smooth velvety feel in the mouth is in contrast to the light carbonated quality of the beer.

A very nice strong Belgian dark with some nice complexities, just a few steps shy of being really interesting.

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Photo of GodOfBeer
4.2/5  rDev +10.8%
look: 4 | smell: 4 | taste: 4 | feel: 4 | overall: 5

Pours a dark reddish-brown with a one finger off white head. Some nice lacing.

Smells of dark dried fruits, banana bread, spices, caramel and chocolate malts, some alcohol as it warms up.

Tastes like it smells, nice rich dark fruits, cloves, spices, caramel and chocolate overtones, the alcohol is very well hidden.

Nice somewhat thick mouthfeel, slightly carbonated. Extremely drinkable, I can't believe how fast I consumed this. My favourite Leffe beer to date.

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Photo of nokes
4/5  rDev +5.5%
look: 4 | smell: 4 | taste: 4 | feel: 4 | overall: 4

Poured this one into the Leffe goblet that came with the gift pack. One-finger head, frothy, that died back relatively quickly to a moderately thick film that stayed in place all the way down and left really nice lacing on the glass. Nice looking reddish earthy tone, crystal clear with bubbles rising throughout.

Smells nice, flowery and fruity with some molasses/dark sugary Leffe scent.

Taste is pretty full, figs and fruits, some tart and a mild bitterness to follow up that keeps it from getting completely away. A little sweeter than I *really* like, but quite good...no problem drinking these pretty much anytime.

Mouthfeel is a bit sparkly...a fair amount of carbonation, maybe even more than I would strictly like, and keeps the beer from having the full mouthfeel that it could get. Nice, but not amazing.

Pretty good drinkability...a little heavy for me, but the mild hoppy bitterness helps in that regard and keeps it from getting too sticky.

I really like this beer, and it's really good, but I really like this style, so that's not remarkable. The beer is good, but not fantastic for its style. Worth drinking, but most beers in this style are.

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Photo of blaje
3.58/5  rDev -5.5%
look: 4 | smell: 3.5 | taste: 3.5 | feel: 4 | overall: 3.5

Twelve years after my first tatsing of this beer, I got a chance to taste it again. The wait is over. Lets see how my first impression (very good at that time) holds the road...

Pours red-mahogany, translucid without any yeast suspension and on top if it, a nice white head lasting <2min. Probably because this beer was served a bit to cold!

Nose: Some sweet malt is perceptible, no signs of roasted grains. Cherries and other red fruits are presents, but does not dominates.

Taste: Maraschino cherry, metallic, banana ester (certainly due to alcohol level) and many subtle flavours to complex for me to pinpoint. Alcohol taste is very well balanced. Carbonation is good. On-Tap, this brew would score a bit higher.

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Photo of ThaCreep
2.85/5  rDev -24.8%
look: 3 | smell: 3 | taste: 3 | feel: 3.5 | overall: 2

In a mahogany color with pronounced red glare, the draft gives off aromas of red fruits with a sweet odor of alcohol. The taste is pretty much alcohol that the mouth is relatively soft. One thinks then wood but in the end, we immediately notice that the flavors seem artificial, are far from being pleasant to the taste.

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Photo of jbonapar
3.7/5  rDev -2.4%
look: 3.5 | smell: 3.5 | taste: 4 | feel: 3.5 | overall: 3.5

poured from a new bottle, a copper color with a quickly dissolving, but nice foam. Fantastic lacing.

Smell: Rains and dates with a hint bread. Sweet. Fruit Cake.

Taste: Sweetness with a bitter finish. Starts off with hints of fruit cake and raisins, similar to the smell. A tart finish with some strongly developing hops. Alcohol warms the mouth as tartness dissipates.

I certainly would purchase this again, very enjoyable.

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Photo of mulder1010
3.75/5  rDev -1.1%
look: 4 | smell: 4 | taste: 3.5 | feel: 3.5 | overall: 4

Poured into a tulip glass

A-- Poured a copper color, cream colored head, a good 1.5 inch finger head with sticky lacing, good head retention and medium carbonation in the pour.

S-- Sweet, bready, fair amount of alcohol in this. Carmel, and dark fruits.

T-- Mostly dark fruits, carmel, not as bready as the smell would lead but thick in the taste.

M-- Thick but dry in the end. The fruit taste goes away in the end pretty quickly but I thought was fruit and carmel forward in the taste. Dry and gives a bit of a pucker in the end.

D-- Drinkable but on the boozy side. The 8.2 is obvious in the smell, taste and mouthfeel. Like how the dark fruits and carmel take turns in this. Not as sugary as other Belgian beers are. Even though it does smell quite sweet. A good Strong Dark Ale but there are other options a little better. I would still take this over the Leffe Brune or Blond. Solid beer.

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Photo of ecoastman
4/5  rDev +5.5%
look: 4 | smell: 4 | taste: 4 | feel: 4 | overall: 4

This Leffe is tasting much better than the Blonde and Brun but then again this is the third beer of my Leffe tasting night. A little like the others but a bit more fruity and a touch boozy. I look forward to tasting this on a fresh palate.

It pours nice in the chalice with a good head but less lacing than the Blonde and Brun. The colour is beautiful though with a brandy coloured hue.

The aroma is a bit fruity and boozy..

Less metallic than the other Leffes...

A nice level of carbonation.

Good stuff I think... the next tasting will tell for sure.

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Photo of mrmanning
3.94/5  rDev +4%
look: 5 | smell: 3.5 | taste: 4 | feel: 4 | overall: 4

Deep ruby/amber pour with a large billowing and frothy off white cap. Lots of nice lace is left on the glass, and the head retention is great. Immediate nose of banana and bubblegum, some perfume, with toast and dark bread and spices. Tastes great. Of banana and tropical fruit, plum, spicy with good concentration of toasty notes. Overall very malty, sweet-ish, with a good zip of citric hops right at the finish. Creamy finish, balanced, very good.

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Photo of MeisterBurger
2.9/5  rDev -23.5%
look: 3 | smell: 3 | taste: 3 | feel: 3 | overall: 2.5

Pours a chestnut amber, clear, with good carbonation and a thin film of head. No lacing to speak of.

The aroma is dried fruits, cherry, yeast with light notes of spice, with figs and rose petals at play.

The taste is all raisins and plums, cherries, banana, with yeast and yeast pepperiness in evidence. Dry finish. Some iron in the aftertaste. Alcohol is noticeable.

I don't know. This just doesn't work for me. Everything seems to clash and just hit my palate a little too harshly. It's kind of sweet and dry at the same time. Very unusual.

Medium to full bodied with decent carbonation.

I wouldn't go out of my way to drink this again.

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Photo of Viggo
3.12/5  rDev -17.7%
look: 3 | smell: 3.5 | taste: 3 | feel: 3 | overall: 3

330 ml bottle, in the Leffe christmas pack we got.

Pours a clear bronze, some reddish highlights, a bit of orange, very thin off white head forms, settles to a disappointing and thin ring, no real lacing, doesn't look good for a Belgian.

Smell is okay, sweet and sugary, some dark fruit, alcohol, banana, some decent esters, cherries and strawberries, pear juice, fusel, brown sugar, a bit of biscuit, one dimensional.

Taste is interesting, very sweet, brown sugar, honey, fruity sourness, some iron, fusel alcohol, cherries, banana, pear, dry finish, almost a little brett like, but very sweet and boozy.

Mouthfeel is medium bodied with medium carbonation. Not doing anything for me, alcohol is in your face and much too sweet.

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Photo of laituegonflable
4.07/5  rDev +7.4%
look: 3.5 | smell: 4 | taste: 4 | feel: 4 | overall: 4.5

Pours a rude crimson colour, slightly brown-tinged with voluminous cream-coloured head, sinks but retains to about a finger thickness. Fine threads of bead, lacing is pretty minimal though. Interesting and quite good.

Nose is sweet and fruity, with big hints of strawberry, sultanas and a slight buttery edge to it as well. Slight tart aspect and a mild pine wood aroma. Very Belgian, with a lot of rich, sweet aromas. Très pleasant.

Taste is very pleasant indeed with the deep, textured flavour of roasted barley providing the backbone to the palate. Elements of strawberry, light coffee characters and a nice burnt sugar edge. Finish is long and powerful and has a strong dried fruit flavour, mixed with a fresh citrus texture. Mouthfeel is nicely thick and has quite a grainy sensation to it, but leaves you really quite dessicated at the end. A lot of yeast spiciness helps with this, this has a definite savoury edge in spite of the potent sweet flavours.

Nice alcohol warmth to it as well; it permeates the palate without drawing attention to itself. This is a very pleasant beer. Doesn't scream at you or beg to be embraced, just warming and charming for its own sake. At 8.2% I'd call it eminently drinkable.

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Photo of TheSarge
4.35/5  rDev +14.8%
look: 4.5 | smell: 4.5 | taste: 4.5 | feel: 4 | overall: 4

Hands down this is the best Leffe I've had. Not too bad, considering most of their beers are mediocre at best.

With a good pour, Radieuse produces a fair amount of light tan head. The body is dark, fairly well filtered with slight haze. The head retention lasts forever and lacing sticks well to the glass.

Aromas are copperish/metallic hops, with spicy notes and hints of raison.

This brew is very flavorful with hints of plum, orange and a slight mixture of various spices to offset the fruitiness.

The mouthfeel is full, chewy, coarse, dry, with a warm finish.

Overall this is a complex beer, sweet, fruity, all of it works well to make this a thought provoking beer.

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Photo of crnipeter
3.1/5  rDev -18.2%
look: 3 | smell: 3 | taste: 3 | feel: 3 | overall: 3.5

250 ml poured in Leffe glass.

Clear ruby-brown, tan short lived head.

Caramel, cherry, clove, some light alcohol.

Corresponds to the aromas: sweet malt, cherries, clove. Not much to talk about.


No problem to drink several in a row, but why would I?

Overall, very average, indecisive brew - a mixture of different styles without really belonging to any of them. Characterless.
I found Vieille Cuvee being much better.

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Photo of adamette
3.72/5  rDev -1.8%
look: 3.5 | smell: 4 | taste: 3.5 | feel: 3.5 | overall: 4

Poured from a bottle purchased at a Brussels bottle shop for probably 2 Euros into a clean, clear glass.

A Frothy, white head over a copper, tranlucent body.

S Minimal Kriek like bitterness (nothing too bitter, like a cherry bitter) with the backdrop of a Leffe Blonde.

T Carried right from the smell, a nice Kriek like bitterness over the base of a Leffe Ale. Mostly grainy, hides alcohol VERY well.

M Light to medium despite elevated ABV.

D Very good. This one can sneak up on you since the ABV is hidden so well.

Notes: It was a treat to have in Brussels!

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Photo of Macca
3.38/5  rDev -10.8%
look: 3.5 | smell: 3 | taste: 3.5 | feel: 3.5 | overall: 3.5

This pours a dark amber colour with a centimetre of head. Drops away quickly. Clear.

Aroma - dark caramel, cooked apple, something not quite right in there as well, a bit skunky, cherry?

Taste - the alcohol comes through straight away with some sweet malts, reasonably well balanced. Definite spicey elements.

Mouth feel - a biy cloying

A well made beer but I am not a big fan of the style.

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Photo of Jeffo
4.2/5  rDev +10.8%
look: 4 | smell: 4 | taste: 4.5 | feel: 4 | overall: 4

Got this at the bottle shop down the road.

Into my Leffe chalice.

APPEARANCE: Pours a one finger medium-thick off-white head with decent retention. Color is a sangria red and chestnut brown and is very clear with lots of carbonation in the form of small bubbles. Head slowly settles to a thick cap. Good film stays and leaves some decent lacing down the down the glass.

SMELL: A relatively strong nose of toasted and caramel malt with hints of sweet malt too. Some sweet fruit is there, red apples and some green grapes as well. Some floral elements as well as a touch of Belgian yeast in the background. Pretty nice overall.

TASTE: Toasted and caramel malt sweetness up front. A definite floral touch and herbal elements as well, as the label advertised. Some spicy Belgian yeast through the middle and then finishes with some hop bitterness. A mild but long lasting bitter aftertaste is pleasant and enjoyable. Not nearly as sweet as the nose had indicated and the alcohol is nowhere to be seen. A very nice job here.

PALATE: Medium body with medium-low carbonation; lower than expected given the carbonation visible. Creamy and velvety smooth on the palate, goes down easy smooth with no bite and finishes crisp and slightly dry on the palate. Good here too.

OVERALL: A very solid effort here. Leffe certainly makes some great beers, and this is probably their best one I've sampled to date. Unfortunately, the brewery gets forgotten sometimes, as their brews are so readily available here in Europe and across the pond. An enjoyable and drinkable brew, this one definitely comes recommended.

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Photo of SleepyMonk
3.83/5  rDev +1.1%
look: 4 | smell: 3.5 | taste: 4 | feel: 3.5 | overall: 4

33c bottle chilled just below room temperature and poured into a Leffe chalice.

A thick egg white head builds immediately upon pouring from the bottle held at an angle to the glass, however the head doesn't stick around for long. It falls away to a thin head that leaves healthy amoun of lacing.

Held to the light the Leffe Radieuse is a deep tea hue moving towards rust territory.

Smell is very much floral with garden herbs and roasted, perhaps even smoked, fruits.

The taste is very much in line with the nose of this beer with the exception of fruits like banana. The roasted fruits are evident and the garden herbs note is easily identified as coriander.

Mouthfeel is full bodied with a hefty coating of a very smooth beer.

Not the best Leffe, that honor goes to the Tripel for me, however it definitely ranks highly

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Leffe Radieuse from Abbaye de Leffe S.A.
85 out of 100 based on 129 ratings.