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Bière Du Boucanier Dark - Brouwerij Van Steenberge N.V.

Not Rated.
Bière Du Boucanier DarkBière Du Boucanier Dark

Displayed for educational use only; do not reuse.
very good

150 Ratings
no score

(send 'em beer!)
Ratings: 150
Reviews: 107
rAvg: 3.81
pDev: 13.65%
Wants: 3
Gots: 3 | FT: 0
Brewed by:
Brouwerij Van Steenberge N.V. visit their website

Style | ABV
Belgian Strong Dark Ale |  9.00% ABV

Availability: Year-round

Notes/Commercial Description:
No notes at this time.

(Beer added by: maxpower on 08-17-2004)
Beer: Ratings & Reviews
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Ratings: 150 | Reviews: 107 | Display Reviews Only:
Photo of bkilpatr
3.65/5  rDev -4.2%
look: 4.5 | smell: 4 | taste: 3.5 | feel: 3.5 | overall: 3.5

Poured from a 330 ml bottle into a Chimay glass. 02/28/08

Pours a deep dark brown/black color. About three fingers of fluffy tan head. The head leaves beautiful lacing around the glass. Aroma is of raisin, dates, and fig.

The taste on this one really surprised me. The taste is fruity, with definite raisin and dates, but was much more sour than I expected. The sourness faded as the beer warmed and it became much more drinkable.

The carbonation on this one is pretty high. The alcohol is well hidden, making it pretty drinkable.

The initial sourness of this beer put me off at first. After putting it aside and letting it warm a bit, it became MUCH better.

bkilpatr, Feb 29, 2008
Photo of sstackho
3.43/5  rDev -10%
look: 4 | smell: 3.5 | taste: 3.5 | feel: 3.5 | overall: 3

12oz bottle from LCBO 2007 gift pack. Pours a deep, dark brown with a decent head and good lacing. Aroma isn't too strong and is a bit difficult to place. The flavour is somewhat smoky upfront with a strong malt aftertaste. Unfortunately for this review, that's not really my thing. No yeastiness in this one.

sstackho, Feb 25, 2008
Photo of geexploitation
3.83/5  rDev +0.5%
look: 4.5 | smell: 3.5 | taste: 4 | feel: 4 | overall: 3.5

Pours with a light molasses color and a yellow-tan head that is long-lasting and lace-inducing. The nose has some spicy phenols and hints of fruity esters, but it is far more subdued than I had anticipated. On the palate, however, the fruitiness left by the Belgian yeast comes through in spades, along with a creamy clove note and some warming alcohol (only present at higher temperatures). The finish is fairly sweet, leaving being a sticky, dark crusty bread character that's fairly delectable. Mouthfeel is very full, thanks most to lots of carbonation, and acidity is present but unobtrusive. Overall, this is a tasty Belgian dark ale that I would drink again.

geexploitation, Feb 10, 2008
Photo of GatorBeerNerd
4.05/5  rDev +6.3%
look: 5 | smell: 4 | taste: 4 | feel: 4 | overall: 4

A: This one looks like a great beer. A deep dark brown with a slight red tint to it. A frothy finger thick head that dissipates quickly leaves a slight amount of lacing on the side of the glass.

S: Has a sweet fruity smell with a note of yeasty mustiness.

T: A slightly sweet taste with a fruity hint tastes just like the smell. There is a dry finish following the sweeter taste. Its a tasty but not outstanding brew.

M: Feels just a little thin with a little more in mouth carbonation than I would prefer. However, it is still an above average in mouth experience.

D: The alcohol warmth and slightly bitter after taste made this one a sipper for me.

GatorBeerNerd, Jan 17, 2008
Photo of funkengruven
4.2/5  rDev +10.2%
look: 5 | smell: 4 | taste: 4 | feel: 4.5 | overall: 4.5

Got this as part of a gift, Served at approximately 5.5C/42F. this poured into my Chimay chalice a nice dark cloudy brown, with a thick creamy head that stays forever, quite impressive. Smell contains some scents of dried fruit, prunes, seems typical of a Belgian dark ale. Flavor is interesting, reminds me of an Oud Bruin. Aromas of dried fruit, a touch of sour grapes, some subtle complexities in the finish where the sour and the malt come together. Mouthfeel was very full in this brew, thick and creamy, very pleasant. Alcohol is nearly undetectable making this brew quite easy to drink.

A very solid Belgian Ale. Certainly worth a try.

funkengruven, Dec 26, 2007
Photo of irishkyle21
3.98/5  rDev +4.5%
look: 4.5 | smell: 4 | taste: 4 | feel: 3.5 | overall: 4

Pours with a large foam that is slowly rising above the glass and stays dominant for most of the beer. Has a deep ruby color.

Smells of dark fruits, roasted malt, spices, toffee and alcohol.

Tastes of sweetened dark fruits, some hop bitterness, caramel and a warming alcohol. This was my favorite beer of the three that came in the mixed six pack.

irishkyle21, Dec 18, 2007
Photo of barefootbrewer
3.88/5  rDev +1.8%
look: 3.5 | smell: 3.5 | taste: 4 | feel: 4 | overall: 4

This beer poured a dark brown with a big carbonated head. The aroma is sweet and malty. The taste is sour and malty with some spiciness. The mouthfeel is full. The beers favors, aroma and mouthfeel seem to all blend well. I’d consider this a very drinkable brew.

barefootbrewer, Jul 08, 2007
Photo of jim102864
3.8/5  rDev -0.3%
look: 4 | smell: 3 | taste: 4 | feel: 4 | overall: 4

Served from the 330ml opaque white bottle into an American pint glass which was the only faux pas of the World of Beer, Tampa where I had this little sucker. They do have proper glasses but backfired this time around.

Anyway, a nice puffy head with ample lace even with the lousy glass and all. Some carbonation, but modest as it should be.

The nose offered hints of nuts, candied sugar and a whiff of caramel.

More of the same in the taste - caramel, almonds and candied sugar.

Mouthfeel was modest and smooth with candied sugar appearing in the finish along with some hop bitterness.

All in all a very drinkable strong dark and very worth the price.

jim102864, Jun 27, 2007
Photo of basica
4.63/5  rDev +21.5%
look: 4.5 | smell: 5 | taste: 5 | feel: 3.5 | overall: 4

This is an interesting looking bottle to start with, being completely opaque white and with
an interesting label featuring this fatherly looking pirate dude; I was actually pretty
amused. When I open the blue cap I notice the rim around the bottle mouth was like a dark
brown or black color; again it did not fail to surprise me. Before opening this bottle, I
had it sit for 15 minutes to warm up a bit. Belgian strong dark ales typically needs this
warming period; I think when I tasted by Chimay Bleue I failed to give enough warm up
time from leaving the fridge. I used my Chimay glass for this tastng and also had my Chimay
glass chilled before the tasting. Maybe it is all these factors? I pretty enjoyed this beer!
For starters, I sniffed the opening of the bottle and was immediately greeted by a very
strong and rich fruity aroma; indeed promising. The boucanier pours a brown black coffee like
color with minimal head that quickly disappears to leave a nice creamy lacing. When I tasted
the beer; my god, this is heavenly! A truly aromatic and strong fruity taste. This taste
seems to consist of plums and grapes but is definitely and significantly strong on the plums.
There are only 2 slight flaws that took of 0.5 from the rating. Firstly, I felt that the
carbonation was slighty on the high side. Secondly, the finishing, once in a while exhibits
a slightly strong alcoholic feel. These factors drop the drinkability slightly but does
not really detract the greatness of this beer. The after taste is equally great and highly
fruity and it seems like it is skewed towards grapes and red apples this time round. A great
beer and really could have been a full scoring 10. A must try for lovers of Strong Belgian
Dark Ales!

basica, Jun 05, 2007
Photo of vancurly
4.2/5  rDev +10.2%
look: 3.5 | smell: 4 | taste: 4.5 | feel: 4 | overall: 4

Pours a hazy dark chocolate, with a tan frothy, rocky head. Nice lacework.

Aromas of honeycomb, caramel, toffee. Slightly musty, no hops evident.

Tastes as it smells, plus some chocolate sweetness. Maybe some cinnamon, musk spice, molasses. A leafy herbacious aftertaste. Toasty, lolly shop, copmlex.

Full rich body, warming & sweet. Wouldn't drink too many...

vancurly, Apr 02, 2007
Photo of grub
4.03/5  rDev +5.8%
look: 4.5 | smell: 4 | taste: 4 | feel: 4 | overall: 4

330ml bottle.

pours deep brown with ruby highlights and a huge fluffy tan head. drops very slowly and leaves tons of clumpy lace.

aroma is nice. hint of fruit and spice. touch of alcohol. light caramel sweetness.

taste is great. bit of dark fruit. touch of alcohol. caramel. light sweetness. just a hint of spice. bit of yeast. taste is fairly straightforward and simple, not too much complexity, but nice.

mouthfeel is good. fairly light body with a nice dry finish. fairly high carbonation.

drinkability is good. i didn't finish the 'red', finding it too sweet, but this one is quite nice.

grub, Mar 24, 2007
Photo of crwills
3.68/5  rDev -3.4%
look: 4.5 | smell: 3 | taste: 4 | feel: 3.5 | overall: 3.5

Got this in a 6-pack of Biere du Boucanier products around Christmas. Poured it into a Chimay glass from a solid white stubby bottle. Very nice deep brown with some gold highlights, and a huge overflowing white head. Near-perfect for this style.

Aroma was a little bit muted and hard to make out. Tangy, dark fruits like dates and plums, with some bready yeast. A little bit spicy. These elements carry over into the flavour, but this is much more bold and stand-out. Some chocolate and roasted malt flavours sneak in there, as well as a tangy, red-apple aftertaste. Average mouthfeel for the style.

crwills, Feb 25, 2007
Photo of brentk56
3.7/5  rDev -2.9%
look: 4.5 | smell: 4 | taste: 3.5 | feel: 4 | overall: 3.5

Appearance: Pours a tea brown color with a beige head that has good retention and leaves thick sheets of lace

Smell: Toffee spice cake aroma with fusel alcohol wafting through

Taste: Starts with a caramel spice cake flavor that becomes peppery, mid-palate; strong alcohol presnece in the finish that is sweet and pungent with some bitter charcoal notes

Mouthfeel: Light to medium body with fizzy carbonation and a warming finish

Drinkability: Decent in many ways but has some flavor flaws that knock it down a notch

brentk56, Jan 10, 2007
Photo of allergictomacros
4/5  rDev +5%
look: 4 | smell: 4 | taste: 4 | feel: 4 | overall: 4

A - Huge creamy, foamy head capping clear, dark red liquid. The liquid hazes near the bottom of the bottle.

S - Smell has strong alcoholic tones, dark fruit and some toasted grain and spiciness

T - Starts off a bit tart up front, with faint notes of coffee. Fruitiness is actually a bit muted, and alcohol is noticeable in flavour only (without the booziness that might appear in a less flavourful beer). Well balanced.

M - Mouthfilling in a way. Not light by any means, but I wouldn't call this a heavy drink either.

D - A solid, well balanced, big beer. At 9% this may have the "right" level of drinkability - not something to session, but a couple over a few hours would be excellent.

allergictomacros, Nov 04, 2006
Photo of Bierguy5
4.25/5  rDev +11.5%
look: 4.5 | smell: 4 | taste: 4.5 | feel: 4 | overall: 4

11.2 oz., 9% ABV, the code on the back is 09BE. Pours a dark cloudy chestnut color, with a slight red tint. Thick tan creamy head holds together very well, especially for the strength. Seems to be a lot of carbonation, just by the sound when it was poured. Raisins, spices, earthy, and fruity notes in the nose. Chocolate maltyness, ripe fruit, raisins, and lots of sweetness. The carbonation is very soft. A little bit of earthy spices as it warms. Alcohol is very well hidden. This is very enjoyable.

Bierguy5, Oct 31, 2006
Photo of Zorro
4.1/5  rDev +7.6%
look: 4 | smell: 4.5 | taste: 4 | feel: 4 | overall: 4

A careful pour to keep out any sediment rewards me with a dark brown ale with a respectable tall tan head.

Smell is sweet with a distant sour edge to it and brown sugar on apples odor. The aroma of German Christmas cookies and some alcohol spice tickle my nose. Lesser aromas of figs and dates this is a very nice smelling beer.

The taste begins sweet and sugary with a sweet cake flavor. Lots of molasses flavor to this one and I don't mean brown sugar, it is more than a slight flavor too. The German Christmas cookie flavor is strong with this one good flavors of ginger and cinnamon. Hops appear as a bitterness in the after taste but otherwise are not a flavor component.

Mouthfeel is good.

An excellent and relaxing beer that goes down easy. This is no Gouden Carolus but it IS a first rate dark Belgian ale.

Zorro, Oct 22, 2006
Photo of mattcrill
4.22/5  rDev +10.8%
look: 4.5 | smell: 4.5 | taste: 4 | feel: 4 | overall: 4.5

Aroma: Cloves, grapes, raisins, fruity esters and a touch of Belgian yeast funk.

Appearance: Murky river water brown with a fluffy off-white cap.

Flavor: Raisins, carmel, maple, a firm alcohol backbone. As it warms you get more cloves and pepper which gets to be a bit overwhelming. Seems to be more approachable at cooler temps.

Mouthfeel: Medium and oily with a drying finish.

Overall impression: This one really works for me. Seems to have multiple layers of complexity and immensely enjoyable. Strongly recommended.

mattcrill, Sep 30, 2006
Photo of RoyalT
4/5  rDev +5%
look: 4 | smell: 4 | taste: 4 | feel: 4 | overall: 4

Appearance – This is a beautiful, dark, murky brown in color with a nice brownish head that came up on an easy pour.

Smell – This aroma is rich with sweet, overripe fruits like mushy prunes and damp raisins. The strong fragrance of chewing tobacco juice is absolutely sinful. The malts are almost a non-player in this sugary concoction.

Taste – The malts come out a bit more at the taste. They are heavily-roasted and just do keep up with this massive sugary flavor profile. The great tobacco flavor has some even bigger prunes.

Mouthfeel – This is almost full in the mouth and wonderfully carbonated. There’s absolutely no sense of the giant ABV.

Drinkability – I didn’t have any trouble at all hoarding this big Belgian to myself.

RoyalT, Aug 15, 2006
Photo of Blakaeris
2.58/5  rDev -32.3%
look: 4 | smell: 2.5 | taste: 2.5 | feel: 2.5 | overall: 2.5

Pours deep red-brown with a huge solid head. Nice lacing.

Smell is caramel malt and mild dark fruit. Understated yeasty spices and strong alcohol.

Taste is sweet with overly harsh alcohol. I normally like to taste a little warming alcohol, but this is a distraction. Syrupy sweet. The yeasty spices are there along with a nice bit of chocolate but you have to look for it. Subdued dark fruit. Maybe I got a bad bottle?

Mouthfeel is medium bodied.

This beer is far too sweet, and the alcohol stands out too much. Where is the wonderful complexity of a BSD? I would avoid this one.

Blakaeris, Aug 14, 2006
Photo of bashiba
4.13/5  rDev +8.4%
look: 4 | smell: 4 | taste: 4.5 | feel: 4 | overall: 3.5

Poured a very dark brown with very little light penetration. A thick creamy long lasting head throughout.

Smell is a typical Dark Belgian. Strong Yeast, Sweet candi sugar, molasses, dark fruit with a slight mustiness.

Sweet Malt flavors with heavy spices dominate initially, but given a chance there is a distinct little sharp earthy hop bitterness in the finish. Lots of great flavors here, nice Belgian yeast, molasses, some pepper, cloves, apricots, a bit of alcohol and dark fruityness. Complex.

Mouthfeel is creamy and full with good carbonation.

A good but not great belgian dark, maybe a little to much going on in the flavor with a bit to much alcohol taste.

bashiba, Aug 14, 2006
Photo of GClarkage
4.72/5  rDev +23.9%
look: 4.5 | smell: 4.5 | taste: 5 | feel: 4.5 | overall: 4.5

06/09/06- Purchased at Hi-Times Wine Cellars in Costa Mesa, CA.

Presentation- 11.2oz stubby bottle, as most brews are from this brewery. Stamped code of some kind on the back label. Poured into my Duvel tulip.

Appearance- One inch plus slight off white head, levels to about 1/2 an inch for the rest of drinking purposes. Cola like in color, maybe a shade towards grape juice. Very nice examples of cobweb lacing and streaking.

Smell- This one is all malt and fruit baby! Dark sugary roasted malt combined with a bit of prune, figs, dates, raisins and plums. Quite a nice scent.

Taste- Wow! This one has more intense fruit flavor that any beer at this abv level that I have had. I'd expect the fullness from a 12% beer, but at 9%? Super brown sugary sweet, with a nice twang of sourness after the swallow. Dark fruits everywhere! Figs and raisins with prunes and plums colide to make this diabolical flavor. Even a touch of hops to make it more interesting. Wonderful!

Mouthfeel- Thick and almost syrupy. Smooth with a slight below average carbonation level.

Drinkability- Holy crap! Why didn't I snag another handful of these! One of the most flavorful brews of any kind that I have had. Try it, you won't be sorry.

GClarkage, Jun 09, 2006
Photo of BuckeyeNation
3.9/5  rDev +2.4%
look: 4 | smell: 3.5 | taste: 4 | feel: 4 | overall: 4

Murky apple cider brown with an infusion of orange. In other words, tawny. There appear to be reddish highlights as well, although without brighter sunlight I can't say for sure. The cap was large on the pour and has settled down to an impressively firm, rocky expanse of pale orange-tinted beige. I like the way this one looks.

Like the color, which is more pale than usual, the nose isn't exactly to-style. There's very little dark malt and not much estery yeast. Sour, bruised orchard fruit dominates. I'm reminded of (alcoholic) apple cider.

BDB Dark is sweeter than most BSDAs. I don't mind sweet in most circumstances, so that isn't necessarily a negative. The biggest reason I'm not blown away is a lack depth and breadth. The flavor doesn't expand in the mouth and allow one to appreciate its nuances from all angles, like the world-class versions do.

The beer tastes like brown sugar-crusted dates soaked in caramel syrup with a sprinkling of ground clove. Tobacco notes are welcome, as is a mild alcohol presence. This really is good beer, I just wish that it contained a bit less candi sugar and a more impressive yeast strain.

The mouthfeel is medium-full with a syrupy stickiness that I'm enjoying. Brouwerij Van Steenberge must have purchased candi sugar in bulk in order to save a few euros. Thankfully, there isn't the usual amount of frenetic Belgian carbonation, although the body is certainly big enough to absorb any number of bubbles with ease. Sip it or gulp it; either one works just fine.

Dark is the middle beer of the Biere Du Boucanier trio in term of ABV. For my money, it's also the middle beer in terms of flavor and overall quality. I am enjoying it, though, and that's all that matters in the end. This is one of the few versions of the style that would make a great dessert beer.

BuckeyeNation, May 27, 2006
Photo of brewdlyhooked13
3.38/5  rDev -11.3%
look: 4 | smell: 3.5 | taste: 3.5 | feel: 3 | overall: 3

Appearance - pours a muddy garnet color, a thin light tan head doesn't hang around but leaves impressive lace behind. Maintains a very thin cover.

Aroma - slight roasted grain, a touch damp/earthy, with some initial fruitiness that overrides the dampness as the beer settles.

Taste - non-descript sweetness up front, pronounced licorice about mid-palate to back. Between the active bubbles and the alcohol, nothing subtle is going to make it to the profile on this. The licorice fades to a hint of chocolate on the swallow. Turns a bit bitter well after the swallow, I'm not sure if that's hops or just the flavor mix. I was expecting a warm finish in the mouth and throat but the alcohol stays raw and brash on the way down, warming only the bottom of the belly a minute later. The finish becomes a bit unwound with flavors separating rather than melding. Oh well, just drink it, don't concentrate on it I guess.

Mouthfeel - very busy on the carbonation, probably does more to magnify the booze than integrate it. The body is about average.

Drinkability - interesting but a bit ramped up on the abv, I don't think it pays off for the beer in the grand scheme of things. Maybe on sale I'd pick these up again, but probably would seek out something new otherwise.

brewdlyhooked13, Apr 28, 2006
Photo of bubrewer
3.95/5  rDev +3.7%
look: 4 | smell: 4 | taste: 4 | feel: 3.5 | overall: 4

Dark, murky, and mysterious. I poured this beer in a slightly out of style dimple mug and noted the lively carbonation and firm standing head. If this beer is bottle conditioned, the lees stayed stuck firmly to the bottom of the bottle. The opaque white coating on the glass makes it hard to inspect after decanting.

Something about flanders is mentioned on the label, so I expected something of a flanders red. This may be in that style, but it is on the light end of both the sourness and barnyard I expect from the style. very pleasant nonetheless, and I find this is one of the few 9% beers I would be happy having a second glass.

bubrewer, Apr 04, 2006
Photo of nouseforotacon
4.1/5  rDev +7.6%
look: 4 | smell: 4 | taste: 4 | feel: 4 | overall: 4.5

Served in a tulip glass, b/b of 29/07/06.

Large, thick and tan head gushed out with a rush of carbonation, slowly fell and left sparkling, foamy residue clinging to the sides of my glass. Bottom was murky, dark cider-like in appearance, brown with a touch of red.

Phenols/medicinal properties were strong in this one. Light banana, raisins, and some spice notes (clove, pepper) lingered around in the aroma. Sweet malts, caramel maybe, with some traces of yeast detected. Not bad.

Strong phenol character was in the taste, too. Medicine + bandaids came to mind. No harsh or unpleasant aftertaste, though. Spicy and definitely peppery. Rush of carbonation in the mouthfeel. Caramel, dark chocolate and a burnt flavor played around on the tongue. Raisins also present in the taste. Mouthfeel was a touch creamy, very satisfying, and alcohol content warmed as it went down.

Light to medium body with a nice, crisp feeling. Drinkability is definitely high, this one is a nice treat for fans of Belgian Strongs.

nouseforotacon, Mar 30, 2006
Bière Du Boucanier Dark from Brouwerij Van Steenberge N.V.
86 out of 100 based on 150 ratings.