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Nostradamus | Brasserie Caracole

512 Reviews
For Trade:

Brewed by:
Brasserie Caracole

Style: Belgian Strong Dark Ale

Alcohol by volume (ABV): 9.00%

Availability: Rotating

Notes / Commercial Description:
No notes at this time.

Added by BeerAdvocate on 12-19-2001

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Reviews: 512 | Ratings: 880
Photo of Nanothaniel
4.3/5  rDev +5.9%
look: 3.75 | smell: 4.25 | taste: 4.5 | feel: 4 | overall: 4.25

Look: Beautiful ruby-brown color, head dissipates quickly but leaves a nice light lacing.
Smell: Toffee and dried fruit
Taste: Raisins are predominant, a bit of fig and nuts coming in as well, reminds me very much of a tawny port
Feel: Rather high carbonation and medium body, I feel this helps the drinkability of the beer and keeps the intense flavor in check, if this was too thick I could see it becoming cloying
Overall: Awesome beer with great complexity, big on flavor but with enough restraint to stay mildly refreshing. If I was trying to turn a port drinker onto craft beer this would be my first choice.

 614 characters

Photo of PlutonowyManiek
3.87/5  rDev -4.7%
look: 5 | smell: 4.25 | taste: 3.25 | feel: 4 | overall: 4.25

Color: dark maroon, burgundy, on top of a huge, beige foam.
Aroma: sweet and fried plums, cherries in a sweet marinade, delicate caramel. Taste: is a little softer than the aroma. Light acidity cherry, ash, roasted plum and caramel again, this time slightly scorched. Everything is perfectly arranged.
Gentian: only at the finish, slightly spicy. Saturation: average, according to me fit. Alcohol slightly present, do not bother.

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Photo of drmeto
3.67/5  rDev -9.6%
look: 5 | smell: 3.5 | taste: 3.5 | feel: 4.25 | overall: 3.5

-pours a hazy ruby-brown with a huge,frothy,beige head
-high carbonation visible
-slightly acidic,plums,raisins,dates,cherries
-plums,raisins,dates,cherries,earthy,caramel,candi sugar
-a touch of bitterniss
-high carbonation
-full body
-alcohol warmth
Good Dark Belgian Strong Ale,Didn't "Wow!" me though

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Photo of Eric_Standard
4.34/5  rDev +6.9%
look: 4 | smell: 4.25 | taste: 4.5 | feel: 4.25 | overall: 4.25

Pours a murky medium brown with a tan head.
Strong, spicy nose, sweetish.
Interesting flavours – spice, overripe black cherries, raisin, mild sweetness, a bit toasty, slight sourness. Very complex. Alcohol starts of fairly hidden but becomes significantly more apparent as the beer warms, as do phenolic notes.
Medium to light body, slight creaminess to the mouthfeel.
Very solid.

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Photo of FBGordon
4.28/5  rDev +5.4%
look: 4.5 | smell: 4 | taste: 4.5 | feel: 4 | overall: 4.25

Poured from draft into a room temperature tulip.

A: Pours hazy brown with with a nice light beige head that maintains well while drinking.

S: Lots of spices evident, almost like a barley wine, with a strong raisin presence.

T: The strong, sweet smells compliment a well-balanced Belgian strong flavor profile, with a pleasant semi-sweet aftertaste and a bit of an alcohol bite.

M: An easy, smooth pull makes this beer surprisingly light across the palate, making it very drinkable despite the big profile in the nose.

O: A nicely drinkable Belgian strong with a noticeable alcohol presence. I don't care for barley wines and my nose warns me about this beer right before drinking, but it's quite light and enjoyable.

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Photo of josanguapo
3.46/5  rDev -14.8%
look: 5 | smell: 4 | taste: 3 | feel: 3 | overall: 3.5

From www.cervezasespeciales.com. maybe my bottle was in bad state, as it was the last one in the shop and its label was a bit damaged. It let down my expectatives, but it wasnt infamous either

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Photo of Beastcpa
4.34/5  rDev +6.9%
look: 4.25 | smell: 4.5 | taste: 4.25 | feel: 4.5 | overall: 4.25

Very tasty QUAD with Belgian/Brown ale elements. Most interesting experience that any one who likes QUUD/Belgian and or Brown ale should try at least once.

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Photo of KJHB
4.3/5  rDev +5.9%
look: 5 | smell: 3 | taste: 4.75 | feel: 4.75 | overall: 4.5

11.2 oz bottle, L25012015 stamped on bottle - not sure if it means bottled on Jan25th of 2015 or best by Jan25th of 2015 - either way, drunk at 43- F in a goblet.

Poured with 3+fingers light tan head! Lasted for approx 3-4 minutes before reducing to a foamy film on top of the beer. Lightly hazy dark red mahogany with ruby highlights.

Aroma is mildly abrasive, but not of alcohol - seems to be missing even though the beer's 9%. When first poured it smelled of sour musky oak and not much else, after warming for a few minutes some fruit esters including dark cherry and plum notes appear, but they're still taking backseat to the sour tinge.

Flavor is more complex than aroma: oak, toffee, mild raisin, dry tart cherry, deep caramel malt almost to the point of being roasted but not quite. Some sweetness, but not nearly as sweet as many other Belgian beers I've had. Not as sour as the nose leads you to believe, pleasant but not overbearing. Alcohol very well hidden in the background.

Mouth-feel is smooth with moderate carbonation, a mild swish of the glass releases enough to re-form the foam coating the beer. Light to medium bodied.

Overall a solid good beer. It wasn't what I initially expected, but perhaps that's part of its charm. Not for someone who's not used to a little sourness in a dark aged ale, this is a beer for Belgian lovers to sip, dissect, and enjoy.

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Photo of flagmantho
4.03/5  rDev -0.7%
look: 4 | smell: 4 | taste: 4 | feel: 3.75 | overall: 4.25

Poured from 330mL bottle into a tulip.

Appearance: rich brown hue with plenty of haze and a finger of creamy tan foam. Very attractive.

Smell: a good dose of dark fruitiness with plenty of raisin and a nice dustiness; just the way I like 'em.

Taste: sweet but not too sweet with a good raisin and tobacco flavor and a fair dose of alcoholic heat. It is also rather dusty, again something I really like.

Mouthfeel: medium body with a good carbonation and a pretty good creaminess.

Overall: I find this beer to be highly drinkable, especially for its ABV. It really clicks for me.

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Photo of stephens101
4.57/5  rDev +12.6%
look: 4 | smell: 4.5 | taste: 4.75 | feel: 4.5 | overall: 4.5

Every once in a while a new Belgian will hit the local shelves, and they are generally hit or (usually) miss.

Reddish-brown with a wispy tan head.

Notes of brown sugar float freely to the nose with a pleasant admixture of herb, black grape, warmed syrup and vanilla.

Tastes of brown bread, a little grain, a pinch of nutmeg and molasses covered grapes. Yes, that is correct, molasses covered grapes, and ain't that yum!

Medium-bodied with a perfectly warming alcohol heat.

A definite hit that makes all the misses completely worthwhile.

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Photo of Jeffreysan
4.99/5  rDev +22.9%
look: 4.75 | smell: 5 | taste: 5 | feel: 5 | overall: 5

12 oz bottle, poured into a goblet

Appearance: Pours a beautiful, deep, dark, mahogany color with one and a half fingers of white head that quickly dissolved away into a thin lacing of foam that completely covered the top of the beer.

Aroma: Very aromatic! Lots of toasted malt, immediately followed by, and almost overpowered by, tons of dried stone fruit, such as raisins and prunes, as well as candied sugar, Belgian yeast, a touch of vanilla and star anise.

Taste: Very, very good! Very fruity and earthy up front, imparting notes of raisins, prunes, dates and figs, along with some toasted malt, candied sugar and Belgian yeast.

Mouthfeel: Medium-bodied to slightly chewy, and much more carbonated than I’m used to in Belgian beers. With an ABV of 9.0%, there is a very pleasant alcohol warmth on the palate.

Overall: This is another very, very good Belgian brown ale! A little more fruity and earthy than other Belgian Brunes that I’ve had, which is pleasantly different. Reminds me of Goulden Drak.

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Photo of JasW
4.19/5  rDev +3.2%
look: 4.25 | smell: 4 | taste: 4.25 | feel: 4.25 | overall: 4.25

Pours a beautiful black-brown burgundy color. Dates, figs, and spices, with a sweetness balanced by a slight booziness and a pleasantly bitter undertone.

 153 characters

Photo of Dope
4.22/5  rDev +3.9%
look: 4 | smell: 4.5 | taste: 4 | feel: 4.5 | overall: 4.25

Not sure of bottling date, I think this is lot 609 of 2014?

A: Pours a nice rich brown with a very tall, very frothy and very fizzy light-brown head. Head fizzes out fairly quickly, leaving no lacing. Oddly enough, pretty good retention once the initial fizziness has passed.

S: Loads of belgian candi sugar. A touch of brown sugar in there too. Lots of sweet dark fruits too. Raisins of course, maybe some fig. Very nice sweet and fruity aroma.

T: Not nearly as sweet as the aroma indicates (thankfully). Almost dry initially, then lots of great candi sugar and dark fruits up front. Loads of raisins, figs and brown sugar too. Decent sweet breadiness in the finish, like a poundcake. Lightly earthy and spiced aftertaste.

M: Fairly heavy but very smooth. Very drinkable.

O: Very nice belgian strong dark. Initial flavor is a little light but turns into a nice strong belgian brown. Makes me think of a double...dubbel. Imperial dubbel? Not really a quad, it's just a strong dubbel. At least, that's how I'm perceiving it. Nice complexity and balance of flavors. Drinkability is top, top notch and elevated my scoring a bit. Goes down really easily for a 9% beer.

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Photo of Kgoldsbe
4.38/5  rDev +7.9%
look: 4.25 | smell: 4.25 | taste: 4.5 | feel: 4.5 | overall: 4.25

Delivers exactly what a Belgian brown should: medium reddish brown color, toasty malt in the aroma,and a subtle sweetness on the tongue. Very enjoyable.

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Photo of delta490
4.18/5  rDev +3%
look: 4 | smell: 4 | taste: 4.25 | feel: 4.25 | overall: 4.25

Pours a deep brown with a thin beige head that quickly dissipates; a small thin disc of head hangs on in the middle of the goblet. The aroma is rich deep fruit and some alcohol. The taste is similar to the aroma but just a little bit more robust. It has a nice thick feeling to the body and a smooth finish.

 307 characters

Photo of smakawhat
4.12/5  rDev +1.5%
look: 4 | smell: 4.5 | taste: 4 | feel: 4 | overall: 4

Poured from the 11.2 fl oz bottle into a tulip glass.

Deep red chestnut brown, with an almost purple sheen to it for the body color. Head is only a finger tall but settles to a thin and creamy tan puck. Solid collar around, and a good amount of fine carbonation.

Classic Belgian dark notes on the nose, with some complexity. Good notes of raisin and figs, with a sweet caramel sense and candi sugar. Hints of mild acid and a bit of balsamic vinegar tucked away also. Clove. Nutmeg. Even some dark spicy brown bread crust too. very nice.

Champagne like crisp carbonation, slightly gaseous on the palate but doesn't take away too much on the flavor. Simple more raisin chewy quality in the mid palate. Some surprising cherry like sweetness as well. A bit of effervescent kick on the finish which is a bit unexpected but quite nice.

Comes off like a somewhat spritzy tight Belgian ale, but isn't overboard on the sweetness. Handles classic dark fruit component real nicely too. Solid brew.

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Photo of babaracas
3.84/5  rDev -5.4%
look: 3.5 | smell: 3.75 | taste: 4 | feel: 3.75 | overall: 3.75

Pours a clear dark brown with slight reddish tint, cola like fizzy offwhite head. Smell: toasted brown bread, cola, cherry, brown sugar, peppers. Taste: cola, fruity: dried apricot, fig; brown sugar, brown bread, earthy and peppery in the finish. Easy drinker at 9% though the carb is a little aggressive.

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Photo of Pbanks
4.5/5  rDev +10.8%

One of the best brown ales out there. Smooth texture and great taste. With a abv @ 9.0 makes it perfect to enjoy a couple at a time. Highly recommend.

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Photo of PaulietheBrit
4.46/5  rDev +9.9%
look: 4.25 | smell: 4.5 | taste: 4.5 | feel: 4.25 | overall: 4.5

Pours clear mahogany, with sparkling orange highlights, head builds high but loose with minimal retention and spotty lacing.
I get the fig, cherry, dark fruit aromas mingled with a malty biscuit sweetness.
The taste follows the nose for the fruit and malt, but then is followed by a boozy oak finish that leaves my palate dry.
The alcohol is nicely balanced by the fruits and leaves a pleasant warmth to remind me to sip again.
An easy drinking ale that is true to form.

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Photo of BarryMFBurton
4.3/5  rDev +5.9%

This one really hit the spot. As soon as it was poured, a picturesque head of beige foam rose up above the muddy body, bringing with it aromas of estery dark fruits. Each sip was balanced and subtle in its complexity - sweet, slightly nutty malt, earthy mushroom, molasses, and rich fig and date flavors abound, a combination of tastes that left me chewing the palate slowly and deliberately. Truly a meal in a glass.

 417 characters

Photo of jjam1266
4.25/5  rDev +4.7%

Pours a slightly reddish dark brown with a single finger of white foamy head. Lacing is nice and is long lasting. Smell is of figs and cherries and other sour fruits, but not extremely prevalent. Taste is again of dark fruits but very balanced by nice spicy hops. Hoppier than expected but very good. Alcohol comes in towards the end but gives the flavor a nice little kick that works well. Moderate carbonation. Quite a good brew.

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Photo of cindyjeffsmith
4.25/5  rDev +4.7%
look: 4.25 | smell: 4.25 | taste: 4.25 | feel: 4.25 | overall: 4.25

appearance: Deep burgundy. Mostly clear. Big plush head on the pour that all but disappears. Still, a good looking brew. reminds of a sherry or a tawny port.
smell: Dark fruit, a little spice and a pleasant hint of rich alcohol. Nice.
taste: Again, dark fruit a hint of tart and a slight, pleasant burn in the finish.
overall: First time having this and not disappointed. Wonder what some age will do to this. Will find out.

 424 characters

Photo of ChristopherWIU-UTPA
4.32/5  rDev +6.4%
look: 4.5 | smell: 4.25 | taste: 4.25 | feel: 4.25 | overall: 4.5

I drank this splendid Belgian beer at the Map Room in Chicago, Illinois. It pours brown, has a stormy look, and a moderate head. It has little lacings and decent carbonation. it has the taste of coffee, hops, and dehydrated fruits, it has hints of wheat and caramel. It has a strong body, very filling, strong after taste of coffee, and a little edge due to the alcohol content.

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Photo of FLima
4.18/5  rDev +3%
look: 4 | smell: 4 | taste: 4.25 | feel: 4.25 | overall: 4.25

Mahogany color with a two finger beige thick head with good retention and leaving a lots of laces.
Pleasant malty aroma, faint hay, chocolates, grapes and dark fruits. I could smell this forever.
Great flavor, heavy on spicy yeast which pleasantly stings your tongue, unexpectedly hoppy (it seems to have more than the 20+ estimated IBUs by experts) with notes of prunes, earth, herbal hops, light wood, roasted and nutty malts, bread crust, fig jam, candied sugar and licorice. Quite dry aftertaste with good tannins and a medium bitterness.
Medium body with appropriate carbonation. Really hard to believe alcohol is at 9% abv.
What an excellent Belgian Brown Ale, nice malty sweet and mild sour sensation and great complexity. Highly recommendable.

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Photo of superspak
4.1/5  rDev +1%
look: 4 | smell: 4 | taste: 4 | feel: 4 | overall: 4.5

750 ml bottle into tulip glass, best before 1/28/2015. Pours crystal clear deep ruby red color with a 2 finger fairly dense khaki head with good retention, that reduces to a small cap that lingers. Spotty soapy lacing clings on the glass, with a good amount of streaming carbonation retaining the head. Aromas of big raisin, plum, fig, pear, apple, banana, caramel, toast, biscuit, candi sugar, light chocolate, bubblegum, herbal, floral, light pepper, and yeast earthiness. Very nice aromas with good balance and complexity of fruity/earthy yeast and dark malt notes; with great strength. Taste of raisin, plum, pear, apple, fig, banana, caramel, toast, biscuit, candi sugar, light chocolate, light bubblegum, pepper, herbal, floral, and yeast earthiness. Fair amount of earthy yeast spiciness on the finish; with lingering notes of raisin, plum, pear, apple, fig, banana, caramel, toast, biscuit, light chocolate, candi sugar, light bubblegum, light pepper, herbal, floral, and yeast earthiness on the finish for a good bit. Damn nice complexity of fruity/earthy yeast and dark malt flavors; with a great malt/yeast flavor balance and zero cloying flavors after the finish. Medium-high carbonation and medium bodied; with a smooth, crisp, and lightly slick/pricky mouthfeel that is nice. Alcohol is well hidden with minimal warming present after the finish. Overall this is a excellent Belgian strong dark ale. All around great complexity and balance of fruity/earthy yeast and dark malt flavors; and very smooth and crisp to sip on for the ABV. A very enjoyable offering.

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Nostradamus from Brasserie Caracole
91 out of 100 based on 512 ratings.