Bush De Noël - Brasserie Dubuisson Frères sprl

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Bush De NoëlBush De Noël

Educational use only; do not reuse.
BA SCORE
90
outstanding

799 Ratings
THE BROS
98
world-class

(view ratings)
Ratings: 799
Reviews: 448
rAvg: 4.03
pDev: 12.16%
Wants: 40
Gots: 72 | FT: 1
Brewed by:
Brasserie Dubuisson Frères sprl visit their website
Belgium

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: 799 | Reviews: 448
Photo of GarthDanielson
4.35/5  rDev +7.9%
look: 4.25 | smell: 4.25 | taste: 4.5 | feel: 4.25 | overall: 4.25

Poured from a bottle into a snifter, the beer is a dark, rich, ruby-caramel coloring that is slightly murky, and starts with a frothy, bubbly, off-white head that quickly disappears. Slow trails of carbonation bubbles throughout the body of the beer. Aromas of grape, fig, raisin, and date on the forward bouquet, with earthy notes, cherry highlights, hints of booze, and a very subtle spice blend. Very rich and robust nose. Flavors are very rich and chewy forward, with lots of old world fruit and a heavy helping of warmth flourishing the taste buds. The rich and sweet notes blend terrifically, with heavy cherry and fig notes in the forefront. Very rich, robust, and heavy bodied beer, with a building warmth at the end of the palate. There is a sharpness that cuts through the end of the beer, likely a combination of the increased ABV and the carbonation. It truly helps to keep the drinkability up. Sweet candied notes in the aftertaste combine with the old world fruit characteristics, lightening them up a bit right before the slick, clean finish. It's really impressive how a beer this big clears the palate so quickly at the tail-end. Great beer!

Photo of superspak
4.1/5  rDev +1.7%
look: 4 | smell: 4 | taste: 4 | feel: 4 | overall: 4.5

330 ml bottle into tulip glass, best before 7/26/2014. Pours cloudy reddish copper color with a 1 finger dense light khaki head with good retention, that reduces to a small cap that lingers. Spotty foamy lacing clings on the glass, with some moderate streaming carbonation retaining the head. Aromas of big cherry, plum, raisin, apple, pear, caramel, candi sugar, clove, pepper, toast, herbal, and yeast earthiness. Damn nice aromas with good complexity and balance of fruity/spicy yeast and malt notes; with great strength. Taste of big cherry, plum, pear, apple, raisin, caramel, candi sugar, toast, clove, pepper, herbal, and yeast earthiness. Lingering notes of cherry, plum, pear, apple, raisin, caramel, candi sugar, toast, clove, pepper, and herbal on the finish for a good bit. Damn nice complexity and balance of fruity/spicy yeast and malt flavors; with a great malt/spiciness balance and zero cloying sweetness after the finish. Medium carbonation and medium-full bodied; with a fairly slick, crisp, and slightly syrupy mouthfeel that is nice. Alcohol is very well hidden with only a slight warming present after the finish. Overall this is an excellent Belgian strong ale. All around great complexity and balance of fruity/spicy yeast and malt flavors; and very smooth to sip on for the big ABV. A very enjoyable offering.

Photo of jonb5
4.07/5  rDev +1%
look: 4 | smell: 4.5 | taste: 3.75 | feel: 4 | overall: 4.25

330 bottle poured into Kasteel chalice.

A: Bronze, ruby, dark brown mahogany colour, fairly clear forsuch a big beer, small tanned head which it fought hard to keep, moderate lacing.

S: Besides the expected molasses and fruity notes it had an unexpected hoppy aroma and some phenols

T: Fruity esters, fudge, slight prune,vkept the booze under wraps until the finish where
it was dominant and prolonged.

M: Thick, chewy, smooth, well carbonated.

O: This packs a prettyheavy punch, treat with caution and respect. On the minus side it lacked that extra something that sets the very best beers aside, could have had
slightly more flavor.

Photo of Eisen
4.89/5  rDev +21.3%
look: 4.5 | smell: 4.75 | taste: 5 | feel: 4.75 | overall: 5

Poured a 2010 Scaldis Noel Premium into a Piraat tulip glass. Best before 2015. A thick white/cream head that fades rather quickly into no lacing and a cafe thin layer head over a dark amber cloudy liquid . Two years aging in simi optimal conditions. Smells of everything. Tastes of everything. Dates, bananas, chocolate, coffee, kiwi, ginger, nutmeg, curry (this is amazing!). Toasted marshmallow, orange bitters, a touch of cinnamon, slightly toasted/burnt cream/salted lemon/spiced cider/flan/a crisp tart/sweet potatoes. It is not as drinkable as it could possibly be: it is an amazing beverage that expresses its spiciness too much in combination with its slightly too high of level of syrupyness and sweetness. Balanced wonderfully, yet it does not yield itself to more than four glasses. An amazing beverage that should be tried by all who come accros it.

Photo of keithmurray
3.7/5  rDev -8.2%
look: 3.5 | smell: 3.5 | taste: 3.75 | feel: 4 | overall: 3.75

Scaldis Noel Bottle with best by date of July 2014, poured into a Chimay chalice

Appearance - translucent reddish brown liquid with a little bit of tan head

Smell - cherries, plums, spices, raisins

Taste - cherry upfront, caramel, nougat, figs

Mouthfeel - medium bodied, high carbonation, sweet upfront, the 12% is difficult to detect

Overall - nice holiday Belgian that I'm glad to have tried

Price Point - $4.99/11.2 oz bottle

Photo of wattoclone
3.03/5  rDev -24.8%
look: 4.5 | smell: 2.75 | taste: 3 | feel: 2.5 | overall: 3.25

As a fan of the style I had to try this iconic beer. It is certainly a complex ale, but for me it was not an enjoyable experience. Sweet and sour upfront with strong alcohol blast in the middle. Reminded me of an Oud Bruin I had. I did finish the 25.4 ounce bottle over 4 days, but it went downhill each day. There is caramel and fruit but the strong alcohol and sour funk overcame my palate.

Photo of LiquidAmber
4.28/5  rDev +6.2%
look: 3.75 | smell: 4.5 | taste: 4.25 | feel: 4.25 | overall: 4.25

Poured into a Gulden Draak tulip. Pours a hazy medium to dark coppery amber with a half finger fine ivory colored head with great retention and pillowy lacing. Rich aroma of caramel malt, dark fruit, brown sugar, Belgian yeast and spicing. Wow, flavor is sweet caramel malt, pear, light and dark stone fruit, sweet syrup, bready Belgian yeast, cinnamon and clove; both warming and a bit boozy, almost reminiscent of a fruit liqueur. Sharp bitter finish with residual sweetness. Medium, creamy body. A warming, sweet, intensely flavored dark strong ale with all the Belgian spicing and yeast elements expected. Perhaps a bit on the boozy side, but if approached as a strong, but tasty sipper, perfect for the holidays. Definitely a candidate for aging to mellow out the alcohol.

Photo of Braheem
4.97/5  rDev +23.3%
look: 4.5 | smell: 5 | taste: 5 | feel: 5 | overall: 5

Really like this dark ale. It pours a deep dark orange with particali floating about from the re-fermentation. I love a good strong dark Belgium and this beer is no exception.

This beer is so smooth and well carbonated it's far to easy to have one to many...there is some boozy warmth to the taste and feel but that's what makes it a perfect winter warmer.

Overall an awesome beer, look forward to picking this up next x-mas season.

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

This is your classic Belgian strong ale, and to me a beer that is versatile beyond just the Christmas holiday. 2013 vintage drinking well immediately. dark rum color to it, with an active but short lived cream colored head. I smell a ton of dried fruit and booze in this, alcohol soaked raisins and plums come to mind, as well as a classic dried cherry sweetness. the malt is darker, but not black at all, caramel and amber, bready in taste, with very little real spice flavor in this at all, just a prominent Belgian yeast strain and then the booze. its not as complex as some, but its put together well and allows the yeast to be the star here. I think this has range all through winter, regardless of when the holidays are. if its cold out, this is a fine winter warmer. it finishes a little sweeter than I want it to, which makes it a bottle to pass around. well carbonated though, and one of those beers you sort of appreciate that the booze level isn't hidden at all. a reminder of the season.

Photo of drpimento
4.48/5  rDev +11.2%
look: 4.25 | smell: 4.25 | taste: 4.75 | feel: 4 | overall: 4.5

Served at a good temperature with a large, foamy, frothy, cream-colored head that settles slowly, and good lacing. Color is a clear medium honey amber. Aroma is malt, candy sugar, caramel, spice, yeast. Flavor's like nose, sweet, then bitter, followed distantly by tang mixed with the candy sugar, yeast, and suggestion of hop. Body is good but carbonation a little weak. Finish is like flavor, strength is there, good quaffing.

Photo of BMMillsy
4.07/5  rDev +1%
look: 4.25 | smell: 4 | taste: 4 | feel: 4 | overall: 4.25

Bottle as Scaldis Noel. Pours deep clear orange with small to medium head. Aroma of belgian yeast funk, pears, figs, apple, malt and slight alcohol. Heavy on the palate, but with light fruity flavors. Pears and plums abound with a hint of spice. Alcohol is hidden nicely, but the beer still warms going down. Very nice beer!

Photo of CrazyDavros
3.53/5  rDev -12.4%
look: 4 | smell: 4 | taste: 3.5 | feel: 2.25 | overall: 3.5

Pours copper with a large, lasting white head.
Nose shows brown sugar, golden syrup, sultanas and figs.
Very similar flavours, but with some soft booze rolling through. Very sweet, almost cloying.
Carbonation is way too high.
Not the easiest beer to drink.

Photo of ommegangpbr
4.09/5  rDev +1.5%
look: 3 | smell: 4.5 | taste: 4 | feel: 4.25 | overall: 4

Not a pretty version within a style that is normally very visually impressive. Color is diluted cola color with cola like foam.
Scent is much more striking, even from afar. Developed yeast/sugar things going on. Fresh baked bread mixed with candy shoppe.
Probably the most impressive feature of this beverage is the 12% alcohol that is very difficult to detect. Seriously, very very difficult to tell it is that strong. Really quite smooth and enjoyable all around. Not at all sugary or syrupy in a style that can err in that way. Worth sampling and resampling.

Photo of elNopalero
3.53/5  rDev -12.4%
look: 4 | smell: 3.5 | taste: 3.5 | feel: 3.5 | overall: 3.5

2012 Update:

Bottle opened after 2+ years of age.

I like the little bottle—it’s the perfect amount for a personal-sized serving of a high gravity beer. If this was in a 750 ml bottle I don’t think I’d get a chance to open it anytime soon. As it is I sat on it for over 2 years.

Poured a clear, light ruddy raisin-colored hue with a thin, tight lace ring.
The aroma has a dried stone fruit touch—raisin, fig, dates—but there’s an overpowering phenolic alcohol aroma that dominates and overpowers it. The aroma is off putting. The more time I spend with it the less pleasant I find it, unfortunately.

Flavorwise its lightly raisin/fig/stone fruit/fruit cake, with a caramel malt finish. The booziness doesn’t come across as strongly on the sip but it’s still evident.
What can I say. It still doesn’t excite me. Eh.

Previously: This has a light amber color with a good amount of lingering foam. There is a muted aroma belying a lot of flavor on the palate. Noticeable booze. At 12% there’s no where to hide but it still plays well. The malt profile dissipates rapidly under it, and it carries a bit of a bite. Another year on this and I think we’d be good friends.

Photo of coreyfmcdonald
3.35/5  rDev -16.9%
look: 3.25 | smell: 3.75 | taste: 3.25 | feel: 3 | overall: 3.25

25cl bottle into a snifter

A: Pours a medium amber color with a finger of white head. The color of this beer is quite light for a BSDA.

S: Dried apricots, plums, prunes, and a hint of licorice. Nutmeg and orange bitter spiciness is there, but it's fairly restrained. Smells quite boozy.

T: Fairly light on the palate for the style. I get dried apricots, but not as much prunes and plums as the aroma. A bit of peppercorn and orange bitters. Overall, the taste is not nearly as complex as the aroma. This is also very, very boozy.

M: A bit light with light carbonation.

O: Not bad, but I'd like more dark fruit and more esters. Extremely boozy, too.

Photo of Louski
3.59/5  rDev -10.9%
look: 4.75 | smell: 3.75 | taste: 3.25 | feel: 3.5 | overall: 3.75

Poured from bottle into Leffe chalice.

A: Pours a deep amber with about a finger's worth of head that I had to force while pouring.

S: Malty, fruity undertones are coupled with the sharp alcohol fumes.

T: Right off the bat the fruit, bread, and caramel are apparent but too quickly overcome by the alcohol. If only thise flavors could have held on. Sipping buys you a little time, but not enough in my opinion.

M: Paints a nice profile across the palate but again the alcohol heat crashes the party so I couldn't let it stay on my tongue long enough.

O: I think I expected a bit more from this one. The flavors are there, but the darn alcohol just took over. I enjoy a strong beer but this one just packed a little too much punch. I'll give it another go next winter to be fair.

Photo of kojevergas
3.49/5  rDev -13.4%
look: 3 | smell: 3.25 | taste: 3.5 | feel: 3.75 | overall: 3.75

Scaldis Noel 2007 vintage. 12%. Bottle served into a Samuel Smith's nonic glass at a tasting. I was rushed while reviewing so please excuse any lack of detail. Reviewed from notes.

A: Pours a rich caramel-auburn head. Understated. Lacks any head at all. No yeast particles are visible. No bubble show.

Sm: Oxidation, caramel, malty sweetness. Biscuit malt. Buried fruit. Nectary notes. A moderate strength aroma.

T: Biscuity and malty. Brown sugar. Alcohol heat on the aftertaste. Floral hops. Caramel. Well layered malty body. Some biscuity yeast and biscuit malt. A tasty balanced beer.

Mf: Excellent coarseness and ideal dryness to bring out the flavour. Good carbonation and thickness. Complements the flavours nicely.

Dr: Very drinkable and enjoyable. I quite like it. Hides its ABV well.

High B-

Photo of ummswimmin
4.13/5  rDev +2.5%
look: 4 | smell: 4 | taste: 4.25 | feel: 4.25 | overall: 4

I had this beer for a birthday dinner last night. I thought it looked good based on the description in the menu, and I didn't know the brewer before now.

They served this beer with a cylinder style glass. From the initial pour I had about a finger for foam that came down really quickly. This led to almost no lacing on the glass. The coloring on this beer is a deep red.

The smell and flavor was spicy with a lot of dark fruits. This made for a very good sipper based on the feel and flavor. I really like the balance on this beer.

Overall, this Noel was a very good experience. I recommend buying this one if you come across it.

Photo of RickS95
4.23/5  rDev +5%
look: 4.25 | smell: 3.75 | taste: 4.5 | feel: 4.25 | overall: 4.25

Looks the part of a winter warmer with it's rich, medium brown color. Translucent only if you hold it up to a light. The head is beautiful. A few clicks from offwhite, it's extremely creamy looking. Fairly uniform bubbles that last a good while and leave an attractive, thick lace when done doing their thing.

Very malty nose, mostly caramel. Slight spice character, though I can't quite pick out which spices.

It's strong and assertive, but the taste is very pleasant. Little to distinguish it as a holiday beer, it fits the bill as a strong dark ale. Dominant caramel malt flavor, with a side of anise and some alcohol for dessert.

At 12% ABV, it's a bruiser. Everything about it is strong. That said, it's very drinkable as long as you sip it. Sweet to start, spicy mid-sip, and hot in the finish, and the heat stays with you.

I'm glad I bought two bottles of this, though you only need one a night. A definite sipper, it's got good taste, feel and alcohol content. Very easy to sip.

Photo of puboflyons
4.16/5  rDev +3.2%
look: 4.75 | smell: 4.25 | taste: 4 | feel: 4 | overall: 4.25

From the foil-wrapped 250 ml. bottle. Sampled on January 21, 2013.

It is a nice looking beer that pours medium amber with a kind if reddish note and a small head that settles to a ring.

The aroma is of caramel, dark malts, toffee, Belgian sugar and everything I would expect from a Belgian Strong Ale.

The body is full and smooth.

The flavor has a lot of upfront sweetness due to the caramel malts but there is a significant bitterness taking up the rear to end it. It really is no different than what I would expect from a Belgian Strong Ale but I was hoping for something a little more unique.

Photo of rundocrun
3.55/5  rDev -11.9%
look: 3.75 | smell: 4.25 | taste: 3.25 | feel: 3 | overall: 3.5

A - Body is a mix of ruby and orange. Crystal clear. Two fingers of off-white foam with decent retention. Bubbles drift up very slowly--looks quite viscous. Moderate lacing.

S - Bright aromas of candied oranges, figs, baked apple. Lots of rich malt aroma here. I also notice undertones of subtle earthy and herbal hops.

T - Sweet orange and a mild pepperyness are first up on the palate. Intense malt sweetness carries through the middle, bringing with it a dry wheaty flavor and plenty of booze. Finish is unbelievably smooth, toasty, and clean for a 12% beer. Very sweet and no hop flavor with very mild bitterness.

M - Thick body. One of the thickest beers I can remember sampling. I consider myself a malt-head, but this was frankly too much for me. Good move on selling it in 8.5 oz. bottles, haha.

Photo of ElCommodoro
4.23/5  rDev +5%
look: 3 | smell: 3 | taste: 4.75 | feel: 4.75 | overall: 4.75

This beer was out of this world. Way better than I was expecting from a Belgian brewer I'd never heard of. Great complexity, drinkability, and overall pleasant taste. An uncannily well-balanced mixture of dark malt and and dark fruit flavour are present in this beer, which is yeasty enough to be interesting, but light-bodied enough to be amazing. This is the king of winter warmers. I don't think anything could beat it for warming your cold nights.

Photo of Cylinsier
4.64/5  rDev +15.1%
look: 4.75 | smell: 4.5 | taste: 4.75 | feel: 4.25 | overall: 4.75

11.2 oz

Pours an opaque woody brown. Off-white lacing for a head.

Smells of caramel, cherries, bretty yeasts, mild nuttiness, a hint of spice and grassy malts.

Flavor of caramel, buttered bread, apples, almonds, a hint of scotch, and a mild hop bitter aftertaste.

Full body with fluffy carbonation on the roof of the mouth and notable alcohol stinging, plus a warming sensation going down.

Really fantastic, among the best of the best of Belgian dark ales. Scaldis now officially makes two of my favorite beers of all time. I'd been looking for this one for a few years now around Christmas and I am happy to say I am not disappointed. Definitely a sipper, doesn't much try to conceal its strength, which is fine by me. A must-try and will look to have this again and again.

Photo of MadScientist
3.7/5  rDev -8.2%
look: 2.5 | smell: 3.75 | taste: 3.75 | feel: 4 | overall: 3.75

A bottle from last years

A: Medium copper that would have decent clarity if it weren't for all the floaters in there. The head is barely there with a just a collar of off-white bubbles.

S: Fruity with alcohol and a bit of spice. There is a a moderately strong aroma of prunes with a bit of malt sweetness and a moderate Belgian yeast spice that is mostly peppery. A faint earthy hops. Moderately strong perfumey alcohol aromas and just a touch of cocoa.

T: A moderate amount of malt sweetness and moderately strong prune and red cherries flavors again with a fair amount of alcohol. There is a light hops bitterness and no perceived hops flavor. The balance is fairly sweet with a sweet finish and a fruity aftertaste. There is a light cocoa again along a honey flavor that boarders maple syrup like.

M: medium-full bodied with moderately-strong carbonation. There is a decent amount of alcohol warmth but it isn't solventy or unpleasant.

O: A sweet, fruity Belgian Dark with a good deal of alcohol. No a bad beer but not my favorite of the style, while sweetness is perfectly acceptable in the style I prefer the drier versions.

Photo of PorterLambic
4.36/5  rDev +8.2%
look: 4 | smell: 4.25 | taste: 4.5 | feel: 4 | overall: 4.5

Pours a nummy looking, clear, light chestnut brown. A light tan head sits atop. Well sized before dropping quickly to a film punctuated with an island of creaminess. Retention is pretty decent for the style.
Smell is rich with malt, spices and dark and light fruits (apple, grape, fig). Great balance.
Taste is the same: rich with lightly toasted malt, dark and light fruits, spices, wood, whiskey/cognac and a pretty good alcohol bloom. Balance is really good.
Smooth-ish and medium-bodied and supremely delicious. This is a seriously good brew. Warming, with a nice cognac-like glow flowing from the back of the throat. You can almost see the alcohol with every exhale and that ain't bad. It works as a nice limiting factor to the desire to just keep drinking this fine nectar. Slow down and enjoy!

Bush De Noël from Brasserie Dubuisson Frères sprl
90 out of 100 based on 799 ratings.