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Nostradamus - Brasserie Caracole

Not Rated.

Displayed for educational use only; do not reuse.

746 Ratings

(view ratings)
Ratings: 746
Reviews: 490
rAvg: 4.06
pDev: 11.08%
Wants: 42
Gots: 44 | FT: 0
Brewed by:
Brasserie Caracole visit their website

Style | ABV
Belgian Strong Dark Ale |  9.00% ABV

Availability: Rotating

Notes/Commercial Description:
No notes at this time.

(Beer added by: BeerAdvocate on 12-19-2001)
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Ratings: 746 | Reviews: 490 | Display Reviews Only:
Photo of jdhilt

New Hampshire

3.98/5  rDev -2%
look: 4.5 | smell: 4 | taste: 4 | feel: 3.5 | overall: 4

Good carbonation - cork on the 750ml can blow off if you are careless. Pour slowly - ton of yeast left in bottom of bottle. Sweet raisiny nose, clear dark ruby color. Fairly smooth some fizz, with some hoppy overtones but this is a brew that should be mellowed. Small label is as if it were intended for a 12oz. $8.40 for a 750.

Serving type: bottle

06-02-2003 15:45:42 | More by jdhilt
Photo of daledeee


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

Just got this in the small bottles. Nice looking wizard drawing on bottle. Pours beautiful head and nice dark color. Continues to fizz for sometime. Malt and fruit in the nose also bread or yeast, might be some banana.

Good carbonated bite. A hair sweet. Fruit and malt maybe banana. The flavor is complex. The alcohol is pretty up front. Somewhat numbing to the tongue. The finish is more roasted malt almost burnt tasting.

Update: The last bottle I tasted was earthy and dark cherry or currant prominent in the taste. Am I getting better at identifying or is this batch different.

I will definitely drink this one again.

Serving type: bottle

05-24-2003 14:23:42 | More by daledeee
Photo of mzwolinski


4.25/5  rDev +4.7%
look: 4.5 | smell: 4 | taste: 4.5 | feel: 4 | overall: 4

The other Caracole beers I had sampled left me with a fairly good idea that I'd enjoy this one, and so I've been saving it up for a night where I can afford to get into some 750ml 9.5% ABV trouble. Things looked good right from the pour. The beer is a deep, deep ruby in color, with a moderate-to-thin sized creamy and persistant light tan head. The aroma was an enticing blend of slightly sweet toasted malt, peppery alcohol spiciness, and lingering must. The flavor contines in much the same vein, though it adds a surprising character of dry fruit -- berries, grapes -- to the mix, substituting for the bready flavors often found in these beers. Toasty malt remains the dominant flavor, however, and lingers pleasantly in a long-lasting aftertaste. Saaz-like hop finish is mild but lends some balance. Full bodied with a overall dry finish, this isn't the most complex Belgian dark ale I've had, but it's pleasant and surprising nonetheless.

Serving type: bottle

05-11-2003 22:35:25 | More by mzwolinski
Photo of DrewS


3.88/5  rDev -4.4%
look: 3.5 | smell: 3.5 | taste: 4 | feel: 4 | overall: 4

A decent all around Belgian brown. This beer pours out a hazy dark brown with a slightly orangish tint. The tan semi-large head fades quickly to a thin layer with minimal lace. Sweet on the nose with a powdery aroma and some fruit. Although not abundantly complex Nostradamus sports a somewhat sweet and fruity flavor with an alcoholic spiciness. Mouthfeel is nice with a mouth-coating creaminess and slightly slick and oily character. This Belgian definately gets good marks in the "bang for the buck" catagory. I believe this will start to be more widely distributed so if you see it, go ahead and pick one or two up.

Serving type: bottle

04-30-2003 14:41:16 | More by DrewS
Photo of hotstuff


4.43/5  rDev +9.1%
look: 4 | smell: 4.5 | taste: 4.5 | feel: 4 | overall: 4.5

The cork on this bottle is dated 10/2002. This brew poured an excellent head. The aroma was fruity and sugary in my opinion. It had an aftertaste that seemed to linger though. All in all, not a bad brew in my personal opinion. I would probably drink this one again if the opportunity presented itself.

Serving type: bottle

04-24-2003 06:18:39 | More by hotstuff
Photo of dmarch


4.6/5  rDev +13.3%
look: 4 | smell: 4 | taste: 5 | feel: 4.5 | overall: 4.5

I'm surprised that Brasserie la Caracole hasn't got more attention. It's in my opinion a wonderful hidden belgian brewery. This brew pours with a cloudy garnet color and a tan head that slowly diminishes. Alcohol is sweet and wine-like with some alcohol. Taste is initially of caramel and dark fruit. It finishes with a spicy alcohol flavor.

Serving type: bottle

04-09-2003 16:07:29 | More by dmarch
Photo of importguy

British Columbia (Canada)

4/5  rDev -1.5%
look: 4 | smell: 4 | taste: 4 | feel: 4 | overall: 4

Pours a nice amber colour. I really like the labels on this beer.

The alcohol level at 9.5% is very present but I think it really brings out a nice stong flavour in the beer. The flavour is a nice strong matly fruity taste. This one has a real kick and should only be drunk after a meal or at least you need ot have something on your stomach. Perhaps a nice after diner beer?.

Serving type: bottle

04-01-2003 12:17:19 | More by importguy
Photo of Darkale


4.38/5  rDev +7.9%
look: 4.5 | smell: 3.5 | taste: 5 | feel: 4 | overall: 4

This beer was recommended to me by a fellow at my favorite beer and wine store, who, upon seeing that I was purchasing a Westvleteren and an Orval, took me to the refrigerated case and pointed out this beer, "hidden" in the back.

It's a typical 750 ml brown bottle, with a blue label on it, depicting a long-haired gent with a telescope, standing on a flying book; he appears to be half-snail, which may mean something to those who know more about Nostradamus than I.

All I can say is that I started the evening with a Dogfish IPA and tried to end it with this Nostradamus (on an empty stomach), and it put me on my butt. It's 9.5% alcohol, and I feel it.

But, what a wonderful beer. Cheery, orange-red color and a fast, hissing tan head. Aroma is full of malt and toffee. First sip brings out immense sweetness, like being clubbed on the nose with a pail of hot toffee. Hints of coffee and a syrupy sweetness, almost balanced by a middle line of hops. Chewy and fabulous.

Head finally recedes to a slight, thin skim, with little lacing.

Thick and powerful. Sheesh! This is the kind of beer that you could split among friends after a wonderful evening's meal. I am beginning to love Belgium; this beer could stir your affections in that direction, it really could.

Serving type: bottle

03-14-2003 21:13:09 | More by Darkale
Photo of canucklehead

British Columbia (Canada)

3.53/5  rDev -13.1%
look: 4 | smell: 3 | taste: 3.5 | feel: 3.5 | overall: 4

This is a brand new beer in the B.C. liquor stores with it's
companion, Saxo. Being a Belgian beer and a high alcohol
content, I anticipated an intense brew. The colour was very dark,
almost porter like in hue. The head was thick with beading
staying to the side of the glass throughout . I couldn't sense much
of a nose which surprised me given the strength of the beer.

Initial tasting provided strong wine like qualities and a decided
alcoholic mouthfeel. This beer is slightly coarse but compared
to La Chouffe it offers more complexity in the mid body. I will
put a bottle down for a year or so to mellow out some of the
more potent esters. I can reccomend this as an after dinner
sipping beer or an accompaniment to some strong cheeses.

Serving type: bottle

03-10-2003 11:57:13 | More by canucklehead
Photo of maxpower


3.88/5  rDev -4.4%
look: 4 | smell: 4 | taste: 3.5 | feel: 4 | overall: 4.5

750ml corked bottle.Cloudy hazy creamy dark reddish color, nice big foamy off white-tan head that lasts, yeasty, fruity and spicy aroma. Bready malty fruity flavors, full and soft palate, sweet yeasty banana bitter sweet finish, not the best but not bad and worth a try.

Serving type: bottle

02-08-2003 15:07:14 | More by maxpower
Photo of John

New York

4.13/5  rDev +1.7%
look: 4.5 | smell: 4.5 | taste: 4 | feel: 4 | overall: 4

750ml corked and caged bottle. Vintage (Oct) 2001. Cloudy chestnut brown. Nose consists of dark ripe fruits – raisin, prune and molasses and a no shit alcoholic aroma. Head is tan and momentarily dense…then dissipates to none at all. The complex, dark sweet fruit flavors are countered by a spicy alcohol kick. Mouthfeel is full and the texture syrupy and slick. Carbonation starts out prickly, then yields to smooth. This is one serious ass brew. This beer is challenging, even after 16 months in the bottle. It almost demands an accompaniment (food, cheese, chocolate, etc.).

Serving type: bottle

02-05-2003 12:33:50 | More by John
Photo of Wildman


4.08/5  rDev +0.5%
look: 3.5 | smell: 4.5 | taste: 4 | feel: 4 | overall: 4


This beer was a cloudy medium dark brown color and had an off white head that left some lace as it subsided. An aroma of malt, caramel and fruit. It had a flavor of malt, toffee and fruits. A warming effect of the alcohol present was is the finish. A somewhat chewey beer, as some have said.

Serving type: on-tap

01-06-2003 18:45:02 | More by Wildman
Photo of Gusler


4.15/5  rDev +2.2%
look: 3.5 | smell: 4 | taste: 4.5 | feel: 3.5 | overall: 4

A bit foggy on the pour, the color deep red to almost purple and the head monstrous and frothy in texture. As it erodes it leaves a thick glutinous sheet to smother the glass. Earthy aromas, musk like vinous, hints of bubble gum and a very complex nose. Quite sweet at the front with a middling top, finish is tart, spicily hopped, moderately carbonated dry and somewhat alcohol bitter aftertaste, a real treat and not to be missed.

Serving type: bottle

01-05-2003 08:48:43 | More by Gusler
Photo of Bierman9

New Hampshire

3.95/5  rDev -2.7%
look: 4 | smell: 4 | taste: 4 | feel: 3.5 | overall: 4

I foresee this bier being a dark, Belgian strong... Hmmm...it's an opaque, chestnut-brown offering. Head is initially rocky and thick, yet soon becomes a thin, fine, tan layer. Lacing is only slightly evident. Nose really hit me at first with dark fruitiness. Also seemed to have some spices thrown in. Pleasant, all-in-all. Body was right there, in the middle of the road. It had what I deem a typical Belgian effervescent carbonation, producing a foaminess on the tongue. Upon first sipping this, I got dark fruit flavors and sweetness, but then a dash of chocolate, too! And then some spices assaulted me, (though I wish my palate were refined enough to differentiate between them). Not a world-beater, but a pleasant Belgian none-the-less! Skol!!

overall: 3.95
appearance: 4 | smell: 4 | taste: 4 | mouthfeel: 3.5 | drinkability: 4


Serving type: bottle

12-18-2002 13:35:32 | More by Bierman9
Photo of marc77


3.83/5  rDev -5.7%
look: 4.5 | smell: 4 | taste: 4 | feel: 3 | overall: 3.5

Clear dark garnet hue if decanted off the sediment, w/ lively carbonation supporting a light tan, thick smoothly bumpy head. Sherryish alcohol upfront in aroma, followed by sweet, fruity esters akin to ripe strawberries. As it breathes, maltiness and darker fruit esters become more pronounced, consisting of bittersweet dark caramel and chocolate malt and sugary figs. The aroma becomes progressively more toffeeish over time. Heaty fusels and phenol surface as well. Boldly aromatic, but not as seductive as other Dark Strongs. It's quite enticing nonetheless aromawise. Flavorwise, fruity, raisiny sweetness is perceived at first, then pronounced clove ensues. Pseudosweet, lightly peppery ethanol combines with the clovey phenol to form a mellow black licorice note. Both dark caramel derived and residual sweetness are left relatively unhindered by the paltry hop bitterness. A touch light in body, w/ a dry, alcoholic mouthfeel. The apparent copious use of dark candi sugar lends a combination of constituitively expressed cidery sweetness and heavily caramelized, molasses notes. Malt character is somewhat overshadowed by dark fruitiness and alcohol, and other than dark caramel malt, mild chocolate malt exists as an undertone. Finishes cleanly sweet with a light sensation of alcohol spice on the lips. Nostradamus is a raw, flavorful and complex brew. With adequate cellaring to smooth out the slightly rough edges, this will be outstanding. Although tasty in its current state, both ethanol and higher alcohols deter both the malt and ester profile from reaching their full potentials. Bottled Jan 2002.

Serving type: bottle

12-04-2002 18:44:50 | More by marc77
Photo of Viking


4.2/5  rDev +3.4%
look: 3.5 | smell: 4 | taste: 4.5 | feel: 4 | overall: 4

This is an excellent beer. Pours a murky reddish color, with a small, creamy, off-white head. Smells of sweet toffee malt, with hints of fruit (cherry, I think), and light alcohol. Nice, sweet toffee malt flavor, with stronger fruity esters. Finishes with a slightly bitter, alcohol filled taste. Rough, chewey beer...one that I'll definitely try again soon. (or perhaps stock a bottle away for a year?)

Serving type: bottle

12-02-2002 14:56:27 | More by Viking
Photo of NeroFiddled


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

750 ml bottle, corked & caged. The cork is dated 1/2002 so it's just 10 months old. As is the case with most Caracole beers, I feel this needs to age a bit to dry it out a little and increase the carbonation level. This bottle is a bit young and I'm disappointed that I didn't age it. That said... ... A rough pour brings up a short and foamy light tan head that rests shortly over a slightly hazy and deep copper body. The head drops, but keeps a good collar and light surface covering throughout the glass. The nose expresses mild dark fruit and sweet toffee-ish malt with some clear alcohol. The body is light/medium with an exceptionally fine but limited carbonation that's very soft and smooth in the mouth. The flavor starts malty and stays malty, displaying a lightly woody character, some fruitiness (including ripe berries and a gentle cherry), a mild but quite sweet toffee-ish note, and a noteable alcohol. It's rich but not really complex. The bitterness is limited but balances well, and makes a minor appearance at the swallow. It finishes dry - probably more from a high alcohol content than bitterness - with a mild licorice-like note. A really nice beer that probably makes a better apertif or nightcap than it does dinner companion or drinking buddy.

Serving type: bottle

11-19-2002 21:29:09 | More by NeroFiddled
Photo of Todd


4.03/5  rDev -0.7%
look: 4.5 | smell: 4 | taste: 4 | feel: 4 | overall: 4

What a great beer. Complex and powerful, but also highly drinkable. Its fizzy carbonation also helps to make this beer deceivingly light on the palate. Would make a nice night cap, or pair nicely with rich chocolate sweets.

Serving type: bottle

08-28-2002 07:43:08 | More by Todd
Photo of Jason


4.03/5  rDev -0.7%
look: 4.5 | smell: 4 | taste: 4 | feel: 4 | overall: 4

Brew at this level goes to show you that beer can be just as complex if not more complex than wine. I could see paring this with a light chocolaty treat or to as a digestif. Very tasty without any of the flavours being too much to handle.

Serving type: bottle

08-27-2002 21:01:30 | More by Jason
Photo of BeerAdvocate


4.18/5  rDev +3%
look: 4 | smell: 4 | taste: 4.5 | feel: 3.5 | overall: 4

Presentation: Brown 750 ml bottle, no freshness date though the alcohol is certainly high enough for an extended shelf life.

Appearance: Dark brown with bright ruby hues, mild chill hazed with a very active carbonation. Bubbly frothy lace that holds well from the higher carbonation.

Smell: Very noticeable racy solvent and estery higher alcohols, expressive fruitiness with some suggestions of berries, ripe pear and plum. A sweet aroma to say the least.

Taste: Brash biting carbonation, bit slick on the tongue. Big fruity juicy middle with mild herbal phenols and pronounced dark malt that throws some chocolate into the mix and feigns a chocolate covered berry flavour. Touch of hop bitterness slides in with the phenols to add some balance. Alcohols catch-up with the palate and lay down some heavy estery and mildly solvent warmth, fruitiness expands into some grape and dried tropical fruits. Malt comes through a bit more middle to end bread crust and husk, slightly puckering nuttiness from the yeast sets in also. Finishes dry and a touch fluffy.

Notes: Big, dry and in you face. Flavours flare out just about everywhere with a broad complexity. A brew to savour as a night cap after a big meal to settle the body … sip and enjoy.

Serving type: bottle

08-27-2002 00:00:01 | More by BeerAdvocate
Photo of pbrian


4/5  rDev -1.5%
look: 4 | smell: 4 | taste: 4 | feel: 4 | overall: 4

Pours clearer and with a shorter lived head than most belgians. Nice combination of chocaltely burnt malts and berry fruit flavors. Again, less yeasty. Tastes closer to a dark tripple as it warms. Nice beer, but not over the top.

Serving type: bottle

03-19-2002 08:22:51 | More by pbrian
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Nostradamus from Brasserie Caracole
91 out of 100 based on 746 ratings.