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Bush De Noël - Brasserie Dubuisson Frères sprl

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Bush De NoëlBush De Noël

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786 Ratings

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Ratings: 786
Reviews: 446
rAvg: 4.03
pDev: 12.16%
Wants: 38
Gots: 70 | FT: 1
Brewed by:
Brasserie Dubuisson Frères sprl visit their website

Style | ABV
Belgian Strong Dark Ale |  12.00% ABV

Availability: Winter

Notes & Commercial Description:
Beer added by: Andreji on 12-08-2001

No notes at this time.
Beer: Ratings & Reviews
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Ratings: 786 | Reviews: 446 | Display Reviews Only:
Photo of DanOLeary
2.61/5  rDev -35.2%
look: 3.5 | smell: 2.5 | taste: 2.5 | feel: 3 | overall: 2.5

Aroma: Lasting for only a moment right out of the glass comes the aroma of a champagne-like spice aroma. This is followed by a peppery phenolic yeast character and alcohol notes. Caramel malt profile rounds out the nose. There is a fusel alcohol profile dancing around in the aroma that is light, but slightly off-putting.

Appearance: Pours a light apple red to honey amber in color with crystal clarity. The head forms initially but almost immediately fades to but a trace of bubbles around the edge of the glass. The appearance of effervescent carbonation produces a constant stream of carbonation bubbles rising to the surface.

Flavor: A tangy bite of grapefruit rind blended with caramel sweetness. These come together on the tongue with equal strength but the flavor moves toward a nearly harsh alcoholic bite in the middle. This fades to another sting of alcohol in the dry finish with a bit of nobel hop bitterness becoming present.

Mouthfeel: Light body with high carbonation. The carbonation tricks the perception of body, though doesn't hold firm enough to fill the mouth. There is a lot of alcohol warming the throat and mouth with a burning astringency. Puckering and drying in the finish with an alcoholic "cooling" effect in the throat and mouth after you breath out.

Overall: You certainly won't be mistaken at the 12% ABV of this beer because alcohol takes part in nearly every aspect. There are positive aspects of this ale, phenolic yeast aromatics and caramel malt character, but nearly everything is overshadowed by a burning alcohol presence. If there were some malt backbone to back this up with more body and sweetness, this beer would be a very nice sipper. As it is, this Belgian may pair well with a robust cigar or a T-Bone Steak.

Photo of zeff80
3.7/5  rDev -8.2%
look: 4 | smell: 4 | taste: 3.5 | feel: 4 | overall: 3.5

A - Poured out a cloudy, burgundy/mahogany color with a small, off-white head of thick foam. It left behind soapy patches of lace on the glass.

S - It smelled of apple, booze, and was malty sweet.

T - The first sips hits you with some spicy yeast then sweet boozy malt flavors. There were several fruity flavors like apple, plum and figs.

M - It was crisp and sharp with a sticky sweet mouthfeel. A medium-bodied beer with a warm alcohol presence.

D - This is a nice Belgian beer. Very potent and sweet with a fruity presence.

Photo of OttoPeeWee
4.22/5  rDev +4.7%
look: 3.5 | smell: 4 | taste: 5 | feel: 3.5 | overall: 3.5

Head dissapates rather quickly as most of the Belgian strong dark ales do. I'm surprised at how this beer masks its 12% alcohol. It is more of a warming that any sort of medicinal taste. You can smell it however along with a burnt sugar smell.

The taste is caramel and maybe tobacco in a good way. This is truly a mix between beer and liqueur.

You could almost use a good cigar with this one!

I wish the bottle was bigger. If you like this try the Pere Jaques by Goose Island. Less abv (and less $) but well done in the same style.

Photo of Haybeerman
4.17/5  rDev +3.5%
look: 4 | smell: 4.5 | taste: 4 | feel: 4.5 | overall: 4

A: Reddish brown color; lots of floating yeast that never settled out. Poured a 3 finger very large light tan head with fair retention. Lots of thick lacing.

S: Dark dark fruits, toasted malts. Lots of yeast notes and spice. Alcohol.

T: Big dark fruit and sweet caramel up front; figs, raisins, prunes. Hot alcohol comes in followed by a big malt breadiness. The hops presence is pretty mild coming in like white pepper in the finish along with a lingering sweetness.

M: Medium body. Ample carbonation. Slightly sweet and sticky in the finish. Plenty of alcohol.

D: Flavorful and complex. Quite a kick too.

Photo of ProfessorHomer
4.42/5  rDev +9.7%
look: 4 | smell: 4.5 | taste: 4.5 | feel: 4 | overall: 4.5

Scaldis Noël - what can I say but "Wow!" What a HUGE seasonal. Had this on-tap at world-famous (but exceedingly odd) Mahar's bar in Albany.

Appearance: Deep reddish/brown in color with nice big white head. Nice lacing on glass.

Smell: Malty, you can smell the aroma the alcohol prominently, as well as raisins, figs, cherries, prunes and plums, even. Rummy too. Like liquid Christmas!

Taste: Yes, you can taste all those and the big alcohol presence to boot. Like being kissed by the Christmas beer goddess herself. A HUGE beer very balanced between malts, hops and alcohol. Sip slowly!

Mouthfeel: Big bodied with long, spicy/ sweet finish. Lightly carbonated.

Drinkability: A very dense, complicated BIG seasonal beer

A very long, slow drink. Outstanding, in fact! Would loved to have had a pipe with it, but no smoking in NY bars. I already look forward to redrinking this beer next Christmas!

Photo of Mora2000
4/5  rDev -0.7%
look: 4 | smell: 4 | taste: 4 | feel: 4 | overall: 4

Pours clear orange with a small white head. The aroma is caramel malt and dark fruit. Possibly a little bit of rum. The flavor is tons of caramel, dark fruit (cherries) with a lot of alcohol at the end. Relatively sweet beer. Medium mouthfeel and carbonation. The alcohol is present making it a sipper, but it is still relatively easy to drink.

Photo of hosehead83
3.85/5  rDev -4.5%
look: 3.5 | smell: 3.5 | taste: 4 | feel: 4 | overall: 4

2008 vintage, poured from a 8.48oz bottle into a tulip glass
Deep amber in color with a two inch head of foam
Aroma-Faint malt and spices
Taste-Spicy and malty, a bit chewy, with warming alcohol in the finish. Pretty darn smooth for a 12.0ABV ale. Glad it comes in the small bottle, as it is a definite smooth, slow-sipper, good for watching the kids open gifts as you stare at a blazing yule log.

Photo of augustgarage
3.97/5  rDev -1.5%
look: 3.5 | smell: 4 | taste: 4 | feel: 4 | overall: 4

Poured from a 330mL bottle into my Trappistes Rochefort goblet. This is described as an amber ale, and is clearly filtered (if the existence of the Scaldis Premium "unfiltered" didn't tip you off).

Rufous body with fulvous highlights. A thin champagne colored head fizzes down to a creamy collar and a slowly bubbling group of fingerprints on the surface. Brilliant clarity.

Stewed nectarines, prunes, caramel malt, and apricot in the nose.

Palate closely follows the aroma with the addition of orange honey. The finish continues the ester parade but adds in a pinch of clove as a seasonal touch. Rich malt and a hint of cognac rounds things out. Complex profile, but not one that really evolves.

Slick, syrupy medium-bodied mouthfeel. Very warming (alcohol is producing a lot of flavor, but is not hiding). Moderate carbonation.

Not as drinkable as the regular Scaldis, and not as interesting as Scaldis Noël Premium (though much cheaper and easier to come by)...still a nice potent middle-of-the-road Belgian winter warmer.

Photo of TheManiacalOne
4/5  rDev -0.7%
look: 4 | smell: 4 | taste: 4 | feel: 4 | overall: 4

On-tap 12/29/09 at Julian's in Providence, RI, served in a snifter glass.

A: The beer is a dark reddish brown color, with a short off-white head that fades slowly and leaves a thick lace on the glass.

S: The aroma is of dark fruits, caramelized malts, Belgian yeast and some spice.

T: The taste starts with a dark fruit and caramel sweetness that is followed by an alcohol bite, which you would expect from a beer with 12.00% ABV. Then a hearty malt character and a Belgian yeast breadiness come in. The hops presence is mild but where it should be for the style and provides some balance. The after-taste is slightly sweet.

M: Crisp and smooth, medium body, medium carbonation, finish is slightly sticky.

D: Tasty, goes down easily, not too filling, very strong kick, good representation of style, this is a good Belgian-style beer to sip on for a while since it's so strong, but there are others in the style I would choose first.

Photo of DoctorDog
3.9/5  rDev -3.2%
look: 4 | smell: 4 | taste: 4 | feel: 4 | overall: 3.5

Presentation: 8.48 oz bottle poured into a goblet.

A: A slightly hazy, dark amber appearance. ~1/2 a finger of fizzy tan head, which dissipates to a thin island of bubbles in a flash.

S: Very sweet, dark fruits, with a spicy kick....all paired with distinctive "Belgian" odor.

T: An explosion of dark fruit flavors hit first, and finishes with spicy, booze infused notes. Bitterness fairly low. Alcohol presence blends superbly into the mix.

M: Moderately high, fairly biting carbonation. Medium-full body, and fair amount of creaminess emerges when rolled. Solid alcohol warming.

D: Decent. Solid beer all around, but the bold, biting flavors paired with the ABV would make this a bit tough to get through too much at once. The bottle provides a serving size that seems spot on for this brew IMO.

Future outlook: Good seasonal type offering in an appropriately reduced serving size. Might be a good one to cellar a few of, if only to crack for Christmas.

Photo of natelocc787
3.69/5  rDev -8.4%
look: 3 | smell: 4 | taste: 4.5 | feel: 3.5 | overall: 2

Quad colored body with a spritzy, foamy cola head. Once the head dies down the beer looks like a tulip filled with apple juice. Smell consists of rum-soaked fruits, apple cider, and alcohol. The taste was unimpressive at first but improved as it warmed as I appreciated it more like a liquor than as a beer. More flavors emerged like figs, dates, white fermenting raisins and cognac. Beer should have had more carbonation or none at all. I'm glad it was tasty so the borderline "flat" taste didn't bother me too badly. A sipper and lacking something-sharper bubbles perhaps?

Photo of damndirtyape
4.32/5  rDev +7.2%
look: 4 | smell: 4.5 | taste: 4.5 | feel: 4 | overall: 4

Single 25cl bottle poured into a tulip. No date on bottle.

Appearance: The head died down quickly to nothing - no lacing as I drank it down either. Bubbles do move up slowly through the liquid, which is a nice reddish orange - very clear.

Smell is unusual - when cold you can smell the alcohol, but as it warms up it takes on a definite wine-like smell. A pleasant grape-like mustiness and some other fruit like smells with a hint of alcohol at the end. It's very appetizing.

Taste: Strong cherry flavor right up front - just right, not too sweet and not too tart. Some caramel flavors towards the end and other sugars as well, but again, not too much that it would be cloying. If there are hops present, I can't find them, but maybe their bitterness is balancing out the other sweet flavors. Quite tasty.

Mouthfeel: Very carbonated, not at all watery...maybe even a bit slick and oily but not in a bad way when combined with the spiciness on the tongue.

Drinkability: Definitely a sipper, and definitely a winter warmer at 12% ABV. A pleasant experience with the meal and afterwords for savoring.

Photo of AdmiralDiaz
3.69/5  rDev -8.4%
look: 2.5 | smell: 3.5 | taste: 4.5 | feel: 3 | overall: 3

Pours a dark amber with almost no head and zero retention. Smells spicy with yeast and malt. In the taste the alcohol comes through a lot, but its very spicy in a peppery way. Mouthfeel is very lame with little carbonation. Drinkability us not great seeing as how the alcohol is the most prominent flavor.

Photo of wl0307
3.75/5  rDev -6.9%
look: 3.5 | smell: 3.5 | taste: 4 | feel: 4 | overall: 3.5

This bottle is named Scaldis Noël; bottled on 06/08/2009, served lightly-chilled in Kasteel's long-stemmed, broad-rimmed chalice.

A: a dark reddish amber hue comes with semi-lively streams of fine fizz, good clarity (filtered?), and fast-retreating beige foam.
S: the nose is rather mild and settled, giving only faint hints of ripe cherry-ish fruitiness and some spicy notes. A swirl gives rise to aromatic amber malts, faint but pleasant flower estery aroma, and more pronounced alc. Overall it's pretty mild in comparison with many other robust Belgian strong ales, which I suppose is attributed to the lack of yeast sediments in the bottle...?
T: the foretaste is alcoholically warming at first, followed by apple-ly and dried stone-fruits like fruitiness, sour-sweet amber malts, then gradually turning lightly spicy-bitter with some warming alc. in the aftertaste, where residual sourness of ripe prune-ish fruits lingers. Thanks to the light bitterness in the end, the flavour does not end up too sweet or dull.
M&D: the carbonation remains light and refreshing, the body is medium-full throughout the drink, while the flavour profile is somewhat neutralised by the absence of yeasty complexity. The belated hop bitterness is certainly a plus to the overall performance, but my taste buds tell me that this ale is slightly too "clean" and light for this beer style - in particular for the X'mas festive season...!

Photo of elniko
4.17/5  rDev +3.5%
look: 3.5 | smell: 4 | taste: 4.5 | feel: 4 | overall: 4

Poured from bottle into New Belgium globe glass. Thought it was appropriate to have this beer on Christmas night.

A: Middling amber coloring with a little haze. Head minimal as well as carbonation. Almost a glowing quality to the brew.

S: Sweet qualities from the nose with some fig and raisin tones as well. I pick up some alcohol as well.

T & M: Quite dry, finish has surprising amount of carbonation as well. The rich muted fruit tones in the nose come out in the taste as well.

D: For a beer with high ABV quite drinkable. I'll be on the lookout for this brew next holiday season.

Photo of jdense
4.42/5  rDev +9.7%
look: 4 | smell: 4.5 | taste: 4.5 | feel: 4 | overall: 4.5

The Pretty Wee Bottle from John's Marketplace, poured into De Prouf Browerj glass Christmas Eve 2009.

Dark brown nearly opaque body. One finger white head, quick dissipation, minimal lacing. The nose is of big frickin' hops and cherries. Taste is dominated by fruity esters, especially sweet cherries with a bit of pears. Nicely carbonated mouthfeel. A definite sipper at this ABV, but very drinkable. Not as hop forward as the tap version at HAF, but undoubtedly one of the world's greatest holiday beers that should be tried at least once by all. Glad I have another bottle- Merry Christmas to me!

Photo of beertunes
4.35/5  rDev +7.9%
look: 4 | smell: 4 | taste: 4.5 | feel: 4.5 | overall: 4.5

Bottle of Scaldis Noel. Poured into 10oz glass. Poured a lovely mahogany, with a thin cap of light tan head that had good retention and lacing.

A solid malt aroma greets the nose, supported by spice and yeast scents. The flavor featured that well balanced blend of malts, spices and perhaps a even a touch of butter.

Body was full and well rounded. Drinkability was excellent, I would gladly have a couple of these while looking out the window, watching the weather.

Photo of jrallen34
4.08/5  rDev +1.2%
look: 4 | smell: 3.5 | taste: 4.5 | feel: 3 | overall: 4.5

I drank this from a 12oz bottle into a chalice.

The beer pours a very clear light copper with a big light tan head that has surprising retention and lacing. It is very carbonated with lots of bubbles coming up throughout.

The aroma on the front is almost skunky but gives way to a nice complexity that has some spice and a very sweet finish with lots of apricots.

The taste is very light but it has some nice things going on. Its close to being very awesome just needs a little tweaking. There are some nice notes of nutmeg and a nice sweet finish. It masks the alcohol very well and unlike most christmas time beers you can drink more than one of these. My other major complaint is that the beer itself is a light in feel, I want it a little more robust.

Overall, this is very good and reminds me a lot of Insanely Bad Elf. A highly drinkable winter ale that packs a great alcohol punch. Needs a little tweaking on the feel and to give the aroma some oompf but so close.

Photo of hrking
3.91/5  rDev -3%
look: 4.5 | smell: 3.5 | taste: 4 | feel: 4 | overall: 4

Had this on draft at The Fickle Peach in the downtown beer mecca of Muncie Indiana..per capita the greatest craft beer city in the US..no shit!.. Poured a golden hue with a nice lacing.. Noticeable fruity Belgian esters from the yeast and Candi sugar is obviously used in the brewing process. Easy drink ability for what I would say drinks more like a triple..nice winter treat!

Photo of jzeilinger
4.42/5  rDev +9.7%
look: 3.5 | smell: 4 | taste: 5 | feel: 4.5 | overall: 4

Pours a copper orange color, small amount of foam on top that wraps around the edge of the glass. The head doesn't stick to the side of the glass and quickly runs down the side as I swirl the glass. Not what I expected judging by the smell and alcohol volume. I made the mistake of pouring the "floaties" in this, I'll know better next time. Smells of cloves, definitely raisins, fruit, spice, & malty brown candy sugar. If this is even detectable or possible, the beer smells complex. The taste...ahhh...the taste! All I can say is, "Wow", pretty amazing. Detecting prunes, raisins, faint vanilla, a slight touch of orange (very slight), brown sugar. Medium body, creamy smooth finish and a warming down the throat from the boozy character of this high octane seasonal. I really wrestled with aging this bottle for a year but couldn't wait, I love the Scaldis brews and didn't have the willpower for the aging process. This is very drinkable and on an empty stomach, it's pretty much kicking my butt. I couldn't imagine a bottle bigger than the tiny 8.5 oz'r it came in. Nicely done, I think this just became my favorite Christmas brew.

Photo of PreacherBrewer
4.4/5  rDev +9.2%
look: 4 | smell: 4 | taste: 4.5 | feel: 4 | overall: 5

This is a very well rounded brew. deep redish brown color with a nice 2 finger head. Caramel, vanilla, and malt are balanced. moderate and smooth mouthfeel. this beer screams balance. it's tasty, big, and balanced. a perfect christmas or holiday brew.

Photo of four20man
4.4/5  rDev +9.2%
look: 4 | smell: 4 | taste: 5 | feel: 4 | overall: 4


Poured in a Belgian small glass on tap. Light Brown Sugar appearance as it cascades down then settle in the glass. Fluffy, thick head with the same light brown tint. Scents of fruity notes and bread (fruitcake?).
Taste is smooth, sweet at first. The strong alcohol of this beer is subtle, masked by the light hints of sugar, caramel, cinnamon and (coriander?). Light mouthfeel, but the sweet taste lingers and warms on it's way down.
Easy to drink several in a session, but beware! The character can sneak up on you, though it often leaves one in a cheery mood. Just what one would need when properly celebrating the Holiday seasons.

Photo of boldcity2008
4.22/5  rDev +4.7%
look: 4 | smell: 4.5 | taste: 4.5 | feel: 4 | overall: 3.5

poured into tulip glass hard.

A: did not get much lacing after a hard pour. medium dark brown in color cloudy. tiny bubbles in the wine.

S: plums/figs and a sweetness hits you first. Very malty. some alcohol hits you it. sweet sugar is the main thing you get.

T: sweet raisin fig, brown sugar, yeast, malt, some hops. Its a sugary sweet and some xmas spices like beer. boozey.

M: heavy thick syrupy, big time time after taste.

D: well 1 and I am done.

Photo of rtepiak
4.4/5  rDev +9.2%
look: 4 | smell: 4 | taste: 4.5 | feel: 4 | overall: 5

the beer that is somewhere in between in the world of cognac and tawny port. goes down warm. nose of interesting malt characteristics... booze. apple pie, licorice and raisin.. fig, prune and lilies... candied pineapple. quite sweet and a wonderfully festive drink.

Photo of Gmann
3.7/5  rDev -8.2%
look: 3.5 | smell: 3.5 | taste: 4 | feel: 3.5 | overall: 3.5

Pours a mud puddle brown color, dirty and murky. Small yet dense off-white head that settles into a light ring. Big raisin flavor, perhaps oxidized not sure, caramel and butter. The taste is of honey, raisins, brown sugar, rum soaked cherries. Typical Belgian BSDA X-Mas ale, big, boozy, and perhaps stale. Spot on candied fruit flavor, big on the honey, light butterscotch. Moderate body with active carbonation that helps cut any syrupy feel. The body is big and boozy but the carbonation helps keep this beer reasonable. I dunno, a typically over sweet x-mas belgian brew. Seems a bit oxidized but not sure. Big candied flavors

Bush De Noël from Brasserie Dubuisson Frères sprl
90 out of 100 based on 786 ratings.