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Abbaye Des Rocs [Brasserie Des Rocs Brune] - Brasserie de l'Abbaye des Rocs s.a.

Not Rated.
Abbaye Des Rocs [Brasserie Des Rocs Brune]Abbaye Des Rocs [Brasserie Des Rocs Brune]

Displayed for educational use only; do not reuse.
BA SCORE
94
outstanding

405 Ratings
THE BROS
-
no score

(send 'em beer!)
Ratings: 405
Reviews: 303
rAvg: 4.23
pDev: 9.93%
Wants: 56
Gots: 16 | FT: 0
Brewed by:
Brasserie de l'Abbaye des Rocs s.a. visit their website
Belgium

Style | ABV
Belgian Strong Dark Ale |  9.00% ABV

Availability: Year-round

Notes/Commercial Description:
No notes at this time.

(Beer added by: BeerAdvocate on 07-13-2002)
Beer: Ratings & Reviews
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Ratings: 405 | Reviews: 303 | Display Reviews Only:
Photo of troutmask96
2.35/5  rDev -44.4%
look: 4 | smell: 3.5 | taste: 2 | feel: 2.5 | overall: 1.5

Boy, I'm like a few reviewers below me. This brew just didn't do it for me. From the moment I popped the cap, the smell had me anticipating a world-class experience. But this ale is just too sweet and the smell and aftertaste much like my grandma's perfume. Brasserie's Grand Cru is much preferred...

troutmask96, Feb 14, 2005
Photo of largadeer
2.68/5  rDev -36.6%
look: 3 | smell: 3 | taste: 2.5 | feel: 3 | overall: 2.5

Dark mucky brown in appearance with a ton of suspended sediment, as seems to be the norm for this brewery. The nose and taste are both equally cloying, bringing to mind overripe figs, candied fruit, raisins, toffee and rum. Mouthfeel is syrupy despite the ample carbonation. Too sweet and candy-like, with no bitterness to be found anywhere. I guess this brewery is simply not my bag, as I've disliked everything I've tried by them.

largadeer, Mar 11, 2008
Photo of Seabass1964
2.75/5  rDev -35%

Seabass1964, Sunday at 01:51 AM
Photo of champ103
2.78/5  rDev -34.3%
look: 3.5 | smell: 2.5 | taste: 3 | feel: 2.5 | overall: 2.5

A: Pours a murky reddish/brown color. At first a one finger tan head forms and recedes to a rim quickly. Light patchy lace.
S: Moldy, dry wood with some dark fruity esters and yeast. Lots of alcohol from the start.
T: Again, very dry wood, and charcoal. Sweet caramel malt that is almost cloying. Some dark fruit flavors. Alcohol again. One of the driest and sweetest beers I have had in a long time.
M/D: A medium body but way over carbonated. The heavy prickly carbonation, mixed with the alcohol and dryness really makes for a hard beer to drink.

I can see how this would appeal to some people. It is worth a try. I don't think this is for me though. I do enjoy beers on the drier side, but this seems like liquid wood to me.

champ103, Jul 05, 2009
Photo of kemoarps
2.78/5  rDev -34.3%
look: 3.5 | smell: 2.5 | taste: 3 | feel: 2.5 | overall: 2.5

I have to say I was extremely disappointed with this beer. After reading so many positive reviews, I guess I had high hopes, but it reminded me more of a homebrew gone wrong than a world class belgian brown.

It poured a russet amber, clear but with a lot of sediment. I assume the sediment is intentional, so it doesn't really bother me. The foamy creamy coloured head lasts, but leaves no lacing as I drink.

The nose smells off. It's way sweet and flowery. There's almost a gummi-bear undertone to it. You can smell some molasses/brown sugar underneath as well.

The taste is sweet. Brown sugar and molasses. As previously mentioned, it reminds me of a homebrew I had that hadn't fermented properly and had too much molasses/brown sugar added to it. It almost tastes like gingerbread cookies in beer form, but not as glorious as that could sound. There's some bready malt in there as well, and a bitterness to the finish, that could be balancing, but just seems... thrown in.

It's a weird one to drink. Not undrinkable (I'll finish this pint), but not one that I would seek out. You won't find me buying this one again. Maybe there's something off about this bottle specifically, but this doesn't taste like a beer that went bad, just a poorly constructed brew. I wouldn't purchase it again, but if someone else had one I'd taste it off the strength of the other reviews. Proceed with caution.

kemoarps, Dec 16, 2011
Photo of dsa7783
2.88/5  rDev -31.9%
look: 3.5 | smell: 3 | taste: 3 | feel: 2.5 | overall: 2.5

From a 1pint, 9.4 fl. oz bottle with elegant black foil, this beer pours an off-color purple, reddish-brown color with minimal head... very similar to the brewery's Triple Imperiale, the smell is distinguished with a strong alcohol essence in addition to sweet caramels and dark Belgian brown sugar... Taste is very rich and thick, with a rich, malty, medicinal-like component... alcohol is very detectable and is not well masked behind a strong conglomeration of flavors... somewhat bland and watery mouthfeel detracted points, and the heavy alcohol presence chipped away at the drinkability... certainly a unique and distinguishable brew, but this one's not for me... for the price paid, not recommended...

dsa7783, Jan 20, 2008
Photo of bskrtz
2.95/5  rDev -30.3%
look: 3 | smell: 3 | taste: 3 | feel: 2.5 | overall: 3

11.2 ounce bottle, poured into Belgian style chalice, approx. 40 degrees

A) Brown shoe leather, slightly hazy, very little head

S) Root beer & licorice

T: Raisins, sweet & sour candies

M) Flat and thin. Not the best example of Belgian strong ale

D) I had higher expectations for this beer. I purchased a 4 pack and have downed 3 of them over the past 2 weeks. I was dissapointed with the first, so I've waited until the 3rd to complete this review. This beer is lacks carbonation and thus rather flat.

bskrtz, Feb 26, 2009
Photo of Tupperwolf
3.03/5  rDev -28.4%
look: 3.5 | smell: 3.5 | taste: 3 | feel: 2 | overall: 3

Okay, I had this problem before with their Grand Cru.

Be extremely, extremely careful when opening this. Actually, don't be careful, be very aggressive, and have your glass handy. The cap is oversized, so if you save your caps like I do, you're usually careful not to bend them - and any regular bottle opener doesn't work. Trying to get the cap off results in fountains of this beer going everywhere - pop it off as fast as you can, and get the foaming mess into your glass, because if you're not fast, you'll lose it to the floor.

I don't know why the hell this stuff is so overcarbonated. It's really annoying, actually. If everyone else can get bottle-conditioning right, these guys should be able to, with their reputation.

What you get in the glass is dark brown with ruby highlights, capped with a yellow-tan head. It leaves behind no lacing.

The scent is of raisins dipped in brown sugar then braised in a pan with a few dollops of rum and whiskey - a slightly roasty, alcoholic brown kind of smell with fruit and sugary tones.

Taste echoes the smell, but isn't as good - roasty oak, some dark fruit, rum, burnt sugars, and a bittering finish.

Mouthfeel is just way off - way too carbonated, it results in an unpleasant swishy, frothy feel, and it seems like you can actually taste the excess of carbon dioxide.

Drinkability... it's not bad.... but for a belgian strong dark, I expect a lot better.

Tupperwolf, Mar 11, 2006
Photo of nick76
3.05/5  rDev -27.9%
look: 2 | smell: 3.5 | taste: 3 | feel: 2 | overall: 3.5

The aroma has caramel, toasted malt, spices/fruit (orange, ginger), and yeast. The appearance is deep amber with a two finger head. There are lots of floating particles. The flavor is complex and like the aroma. The palate is sticky but thin. The aftertaste is bitter and toasty. Despite the positive qualities it doesn't strike me as great. I am not a huge fan but it's interesting.

nick76, Nov 10, 2008
Photo of Mitchster
3.15/5  rDev -25.5%
look: 3 | smell: 2 | taste: 4 | feel: 4 | overall: 2

Pours out to a cloudy dark amber, forming a peaking whipped beige head with superior retention and very nice lacing. There is a copious amount of disgusting debris (which looks and smells like fish-flakes) floating in the beer...quite a turn off, and I'm not quite sure I want to drink this (I have bad memories of Kwak). It's tough giving this an even rating because the head is gorgeous, but damn, this beer looks honestly disgusting. The aroma is very funky...like rotting barnyard hay soaked in horse urine, wet horse (Brett at it's most distinct), very, very rotten fruit (bananas, apples, and cherries), the stink of rotten mushrooms, syrupy dark fruits, faint skunk, distant malt vinegar...the aroma is as revolting as it sounds, but I am brave. Mouthfeel is initially spritzy, then soft with a deceptively light body. It gives me a queezy feeling to the stomach, probably because the aroma is initially just so revolting. Taste begins with medium intensity fruity sourness (like spontaneously fermented raw apple cider), gives way to plentiful prunes, dates and figs, followed by a very pervasive and off-putting metallic note with a light amount of skunk. The mouthfeel towards the end becomes wet, and slightly oxidized. Alcohol is perceptable as warmth, and lightly so in flavor. An aftertaste of rum-soaked dates and Djarum's lingers forever on the tongue. I eventually get used to the aroma and it isn't quite so bad now...kinda like the first time you eat sushi and realize you're eating raw fish. It's not so much the actual taste, but the thought that grosses me out. BTW, this brew induced a brief episode of manual dyshydrosis and mild bronchospasm about 40 minutes after I started drinking it (Just FYI..May I suggest diphenhydramine prior to imbibing?).

Well, what can I say. This is a mixed bag. I can certainly appreciate the craftsmanship put into this beer, but that doesn't necessarily mean I consider someone dumping a jar of fish-food into my brew-ha "crafty". Though I can get used to the odor, the metallic twang is too strong to dismiss, and it ultimately limits the appeal of this brew. Personally speaking, a mild allergic reaction also limits it's drinkability. Considering the rave reviews, I'm glad I've tried it. Perhaps some day it will grow on me, but today I'll stick to my Sour Flemish Ales, Tripples, and Dubbles. Plus, these brews don't make me vasodilatory:)

Mitchster, Nov 22, 2004
Photo of texashammer
3.18/5  rDev -24.8%
look: 3.5 | smell: 3.5 | taste: 3 | feel: 3.5 | overall: 3

deep and dark in color with some red showing. very nice head. smells boozy! dark flavor/smells like raisins, chocolate, toffee, plum. too much booze in the palate. rich and pruney flavors. creamy and full bodied. slightly too much alcoholic flavor for me; I wish it were a little more graceful.

texashammer, Feb 10, 2006
Photo of CRJMellor
3.2/5  rDev -24.3%
look: 4 | smell: 3 | taste: 3 | feel: 3.5 | overall: 3.5

Pours a very opaque and cloudy light brown and amber with an ecru head that has some staying power and produces lots of spider-web like lacing on the goblet. Lots of yeasties floating in the glass
Aroma has a musty hay and grass underpinning with some chocolate, caramel, bread and coriander tones also.
Flavor starts with some darker spectrum fruitiness on the sour side and then moves to a more chocolate/caramel type of note but the sourness persists. Almost wonder if bottle is bad, the musty and sour notes are a tad off-putting.
Mouthfeel is dominated by citric sourness, alcohol presence cuts this a bit but not enough to save the beer in my opinion. Just doesn't offer the range of palate feel I expect from world class Belgian brews, very one-dimensional.
Drinkability was slightly above average but only just. In a blind tasting i would have bet this come from Jolly Pumpkin, not Abbaye Des Rocs. Very much a let down given the excellence of the other offerings from this excellent brewery.

CRJMellor, May 26, 2006
Photo of KingEdward
3.25/5  rDev -23.2%

KingEdward, Apr 20, 2013
Photo of Anatole
3.25/5  rDev -23.2%

Anatole, Sep 25, 2013
Photo of wagenvolks
3.28/5  rDev -22.5%
look: 3.5 | smell: 3.5 | taste: 3 | feel: 3.5 | overall: 3.5

750 ml bottle (best by 2010) into a Duvel tulip.

The amber-copper body of Des Rocs Brune mingles with hues of ruby red and plum; small bits of yeast float throughout. The fizzy-sounding, light tan head builds slowly to an inch in height before quickly retreating to a thin cap and ring of tight bubbles. Spicier aroma than I was expecting, with dominant notes of dried orange peel, grass, and a pungent, flowery hop presence. The maltiness is more muted, suggesting dark bread, brown sugar, and molasses.

I'm fairly sure the bottle I purchased had not gone "bad", but my taste buds definitely disagree with the high marks this beer has earned. Starts off with a slightly oaken, almost sour bite balanced somewhat poorly by a sweet, sugary presence. Where did all the spice go? Finishes bland and semi-metallic, with no aftertaste from either hops or yeast. Mouthfeel is nicely carbonated, but the medium body takes on a syrupy, sticky-sweet consistency that disagrees with my palate. Overall, this was a fairly unimpressive beer...judging from other reviews, quality control seems to be an issue for this Belgian import. Still, I'll probably try it again sometime just in case I did happen upon an "off" bottle.

wagenvolks, Mar 29, 2009
Photo of nomad
3.28/5  rDev -22.5%
look: 4.5 | smell: 3.5 | taste: 3 | feel: 4 | overall: 3

Deep dark ruby color, this beer had a tremendous amount of carbonation supporting a tough foam head with a perfect flat top and creamy sheen. Thick lace all over.

Ester scents, as well as sweet malt and som serious dough yeast scent. Had a soft roastiness that was barely sweet and some soft spices. Tasted of a smooth Grand Cru malt, rosy, firm, and full. I thought there was soft roastiness with a barky heft, but then again some cherries. Finished with plenty of alcohol and an astringent bitterness calming down to floral hop flavors.

Smooth and easy mouthfeel is very nice. But seriously, this is not one I’d necessarily go back to. Had the exact same experience with their Grand Cru. This never tastes that good, ever, no matter how many times I've tried their beers. The hops are nasty and overtake your mouth in the finish and the malt has little character. Maybe their results are inconsistent like Dogfish Head, because none of the charming scents and flavors are found in their beers when I drink them. Flat malt, doughy yeast, and distasteful hops. I love a delicate and subtle beer, but I'm catching none of what everyone else is heralding, only lackluster versions of what they're describing (i.e. spices, fruits, wine, etc.)

nomad, Dec 12, 2003
Photo of ojiikun
3.4/5  rDev -19.6%
look: 2.5 | smell: 4.5 | taste: 3.5 | feel: 2 | overall: 3

Poured from a big 750ml capped (not corked) bottle. Popped with little fanfare but then literally exploded onto my counter. A good 10% of the beer shot out as foam over the first 30 seconds of being open. The foam was dense with chunks of yeast or possibly grains. This bottle sat in cellar for a good six months without being disturbed, so I simply cannot say why it was so out of control.

Body is very cloudy dark orange, with big huge clumps from bottom to head. Head is massive, dark, and retains well. Little lacing, but the glass is flecked with debris all around.

Smell is hugely of cola and spicy funk. Not musty at all, but so yeasty it's overwhelming. Some orange peel and maybe some passionfruit. Cardamom undertones. Cedar.

Taste is sweet but light in body. Lots of candi, lots of dextrins. Mineral water base with tons of half-baked bread, molasses, and fig. Some backing spice, undefinable but almost chile-like.

On returning to the bottle for a second glass, the beer has once more crawled it's way out of the neck and onto my counter. This is one LIVE beer.

Warmer temps bring out some bitterness that compliments the fruit well but fights with the spice. Seems to become lighter still and more boozy rather than sweet. Ginger-like florals.

By the final glass, the beer was totally flat. No head could be coaxed from the last pour. This final glass was also 2/3 sediment - gritty and sour.

It's clear that I got an over-primed bottle, and possibly one of some age. Still, a great-smelling beer. Taste didn't carry the party line quite as well as I might have, but is a rewarding sipper all on it's own. Feels clean in the mouth, though you can actually feel the chunks of sediment, which is unsettling (so to speak). Would like to try again in hopes of better luck in finding a bottle I can actually finish.

ojiikun, Aug 21, 2007
Photo of WeisGuy
3.48/5  rDev -17.7%
look: 3 | smell: 3.5 | taste: 3.5 | feel: 3.5 | overall: 3.5

a - a ton of huge chunkies in this one, I don't mind some sediment, but this was excessive, deep rusty color, huge yellowish head, good retention and lacing

s - rum, sugar, overripe dark fruits, plum, raisins, caramel

t - strong caramel, plum, and raisin, lingering dark fruit and sugar, some booze

m - medium-bodied, lower carbonation, sweet finish, some alcohol warming

d - not overly drinkable for my palate, a bit too sweet, the alcohol isn't overwhelming though

Decent beer overall, but this is the second Abbaye des Rocs beer I've had with chunkage issues. I am drinking this prior to the best by date as well. Not my style, but worth a try.

WeisGuy, May 31, 2008
Photo of mattfancett
3.5/5  rDev -17.3%

mattfancett, Aug 26, 2014
Photo of BlackHaddock
3.5/5  rDev -17.3%
look: 3.5 | smell: 3.5 | taste: 3.5 | feel: 3.5 | overall: 3.5

I wanted (yet) another St Bernadus Christmas on tap, but the strength was just too high so I settled for a bottle of this on that fateful afternoon I first visited The Red Rose in Brugge.

The 9% ABV being a whole 1% less than the St Bernadus I felt very righteous and the wife didn’t notice the alcohol content (double bonus).

Nine tenths of the beer was poured for me into the glass, the remaining sediment infested tenth I swallowed at the end. The beer was a deep, deep brown, red, purple colour, mostly red I suppose: on top an off-white head that fades fair too swiftly.

The smells are mostly sweet: molasses and sugar on toast, there is also a yeasty, dirty aroma hidden away that comes out when the beer begins to warm in the glass.

This isn’t a gulper; you’ve got to sip it: the flavours are complex and confusing. Sweet up front with a malt flavour, leaning towards burnt candy floss and treacle tarts as you get into it.

Rich, but not as thick as you might imagine, certainly different to what I expected.

Strange brew, would have preferred another St Bernadus to be honest!

BlackHaddock, Jan 06, 2012
Photo of DoubleSimcoe
3.5/5  rDev -17.3%

DoubleSimcoe, Sep 21, 2013
Photo of Stoutsman
3.5/5  rDev -17.3%

Stoutsman, Jan 14, 2012
Photo of Mattias
3.5/5  rDev -17.3%

Mattias, Jan 27, 2013
Photo of deapokid
3.5/5  rDev -17.3%

deapokid, Nov 24, 2011
Photo of jophish17
3.5/5  rDev -17.3%

jophish17, Dec 24, 2011
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Abbaye Des Rocs [Brasserie Des Rocs Brune] from Brasserie de l'Abbaye des Rocs s.a.
94 out of 100 based on 405 ratings.