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Val-Dieu Grand Cru - Brasserie de l'Abbaye du Val-Dieu

Not Rated.
Val-Dieu Grand CruVal-Dieu Grand Cru

Displayed for educational use only; do not reuse.
BA SCORE
93
outstanding

283 Ratings
THE BROS
-
no score

(send 'em beer!)
Ratings: 283
Reviews: 142
rAvg: 4.16
pDev: 12.02%
Wants: 46
Gots: 18 | FT: 0
Brewed by:
Brasserie de l'Abbaye du Val-Dieu visit their website
Belgium

Style | ABV
Quadrupel (Quad) |  10.50% ABV

Availability: Year-round

Notes/Commercial Description:
No notes at this time.

(Beer added by: BeerAdvocate on 12-02-2006)
Beer: Ratings & Reviews
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Ratings: 283 | Reviews: 142 | Display Reviews Only:
Reviews by roblowther:
Photo of roblowther
4.28/5  rDev +2.9%
look: 4.5 | smell: 5 | taste: 4 | feel: 4.5 | overall: 4

750ml bottle, cork says 11/09...I don't know what that means, really. If its 2009 that's in the future so its not bottled date and its too soon to be "drink before" for a bottle conditioned ale north of 10%. Oh well. Some things are not for the knowing. Pours absolutely perfectly black with a dense, creamy head that leaves lacing that makes me want to lick the glass clean. Smell is brown sugar, raisins, cherries, vanilla, sawdust, and lemons. :) Taste is oak, cinnamon, raisins, and cloves. Much drier than I expected, with an almost puckering finish. Very nice indeed. Mouthfeel supports the appearance, creamy with a nice tingle of carbonation to offset it. Drinkability is excellent, the bone-dry finish not withstanding. Still won't be an issue at all to polish off the whole bottle. Definitely worth the trouble to acquire.

roblowther, Apr 21, 2008
More User Reviews:
Photo of lordofthewiens
4.4/5  rDev +5.8%
look: 4.5 | smell: 4 | taste: 4.5 | feel: 4.5 | overall: 4.5

We went to Ebenezer's Pub in Lovell, ME for a party, and Chris had a metheuslah of this beer. Besides the impressive presentation, this is a very good beer. A brown color with a medium head that lingered well. Sweet, fruity aroma. A nice vanilla taste, with the dark fruit and Belgian yeast present also. Lovely beer, very smooth. Didn't know it was 10.5% ABV until I was admiring the bottle.

lordofthewiens, Feb 07, 2007
Photo of bishopdc0
4.04/5  rDev -2.9%
look: 3.75 | smell: 4.25 | taste: 4 | feel: 4 | overall: 4

On tap part of my uprising

Served in a Val-Dieu goblet

The beer is deep red with a dark white head. The beer laces very well.

The nose is sweet with hints of berries, heavy malts and a pleasant alcohol back

The taste is a classic quad, malty earth with hints of leather and almost red wine. There is a noticeable amount of alcohol but it cuts the mouth making a nice dry mouth.

bishopdc0, Oct 01, 2013
Photo of jisom123
4.53/5  rDev +8.9%
look: 4 | smell: 4.5 | taste: 4.5 | feel: 4 | overall: 5

Belgian from Belgium.
Lighter in color than most Quads.
Fresh sent. Fresh flavor, notes of light apple and grain.
abv was 10.5 but you could only taste 8. kind of cloudy appearance, not unlike Erdinger.
Would go perfectly on a picnic, or another hot day when you normally would not want to bottoms up a quad.

jisom123, Sep 05, 2008
Photo of Mora2000
4/5  rDev -3.8%
look: 4 | smell: 4 | taste: 4 | feel: 4 | overall: 4

Thanks to thirdeye11 for sharing this bottle.

Pours a murky medium-dark brown color with a white head. The aroma is cherries, dark fruit, malt and some sweetness. The flavor is dark fruit with a strong malty sweetness. Medium mouthfeel and medium carbonation.

Mora2000, Mar 17, 2010
Photo of Swonkie
3.5/5  rDev -15.9%

Swonkie, Nov 14, 2012
Photo of Kraken
4.75/5  rDev +14.2%
look: 4 | smell: 4.5 | taste: 5 | feel: 4 | overall: 5

Wonderful Beer poured from from caged and corked 750ml bottle. Smells of raisins and fermented apples. Deep Brown color, thin foamy head with nice lacing, head diminishes over time. First sip of the dark caramel-goodness is raisin/plum with citrius and vanillla notes. Slight alcohol taste upfront, alcohol becomes more noticeable as if warms. Nice finish, apples, caramel and yeast become more prevalent as beer warms. Complex but not cloying as some other quads. Fantastic beer highly recommend if you can find. Took my bro and I 2yrs to find our second bottle!

Kraken, Feb 27, 2008
Photo of bpfrush
4.75/5  rDev +14.2%

bpfrush, Nov 16, 2011
Photo of ehammond1
4.03/5  rDev -3.1%
look: 4.5 | smell: 4 | taste: 4 | feel: 4 | overall: 4

On Tap

Churchill's Pub & Grille
San Marcos, CA

Dark amber, ruby, and brown with a very thin khaki head. Lined lacing down the glass. Can't come out looking much better from the tap.

The aroma is of prunes and raisins, some alcohol, rye bread, and a bit of spicy, tangy yeast. Good, but I wish there was less of an alcohol presence.

I have a similar complaint with the flavor. The dark fruits, yeast, and tangy rye bread are all very good, though (and perhaps because I tend to judge my quads tougher than most any other style) I'm disappointed in how present the alcohol is in the flavor. A delicious sipper, though it does have room to improve. I would love to try this one aged.

Medium to thick mouthfeel. Somewhat thick and creamy.

A good quad, with just a touch too much alcohol heat.

ehammond1, Aug 11, 2011
Photo of jalexy
4/5  rDev -3.8%

jalexy, Aug 22, 2013
Photo of glid02
4.45/5  rDev +7%
look: 4.5 | smell: 4 | taste: 4.5 | feel: 5 | overall: 4.5

Daryk77 was nice enough to split this one with me.

Pours a hazy deep chestnut color with a big two-finger light tan head. The head recedes slowly into a thin pancake of bubbles on top and a thick ring around the glass. Lacing is sticky. The last of the bottle yields fine yeast floaties.

Smells of Belgian candy sugar with some breadiness along with dark fruits. Light hints of the alcohol come through as the beer warms.

Tastes great. Candied dark fruit flavors up front are backed up by very light bready flavors and even lighter spices. It's a tad sweeter than most other quads I've had.

Mouthfeel is great. It's got a good thickness and small, grainy carbonation that make this one smooth brew. Velvety.

Drinkability is great for any ABV, but especially for a 10.5%. I could have a lot of these.

Overall this is on the top tier of quads. All the flavors work very well together and it's so very smooth. Give this one a shot if you see it around.

glid02, Dec 29, 2008
Photo of rhoadsrage
4/5  rDev -3.8%
look: 4 | smell: 4 | taste: 4 | feel: 4 | overall: 4

(Served in a chalice)
cork says 2/10
A- This beer pours a dark dense brown body with a light brown glow at the base of the glass. There is a big beige oatmeal head that is rocky but simmers down to a thick creamy head as it sticks to the glass with each sip. There is a strong carbonation of tiny bubbles that keep the head strong.

S- The mysterious aroma is well blended and hard to describe with qualities of dry brown malt and old wood notes without oak but it has some cream and some molasses hints. The finish has some dry dark toffee notes.

T- The light brown malt flavor is well blended and fairly dry with a dry aged wood note and a slight tart hint that has some roasted malt qualities which grow as the beer warms. The finish is a dry candy sugar flavor with some grapefruit rind and brie rind flavors that are from yeast not hops.

M- This beer has a medium mouthfeel with no alcohol heat until it warms a good bit and then there is only a soft boozy alcohol flavor.

D- This beer really opens up as it warms and has a nice mysterious complexity making it a easy drink especially for a 10.50 ABV. It didn't have that wow flavor that pulled in lots of flavors but it was pleasant to drink.

rhoadsrage, Aug 04, 2009
Photo of ste5venla
4/5  rDev -3.8%

ste5venla, Aug 13, 2013
Photo of 89Vision
3.63/5  rDev -12.7%
look: 3 | smell: 4 | taste: 3.5 | feel: 4 | overall: 3.5

The first thing I noticed about this beer upon uncorking it was the smell. It has a very sweet smell with a faint tartness that I found to be quite pleasant, though a little stronger than I'm used to from Abbey ales.

Poured into a chalice, the color is a very dark, deep brown. I was disappointed that there was no real head to speak of, and it quickly faded. The color was nice and about what you'd expect from a quad, but the head retention was much less than what I've come to expect from an Abbey ale.

The beer was colder than what was suggested on the bottle, but I was impatient and dove right in. The taste was about what I was expecting form the aroma. Very sweet, tasting of grapes, a faint taste of cherries, and the raisin/fig quality found in most Abbey ales. When colder, its definitely a little too sweet for my liking. As it warmed, it mellowed out and the taste was significantly better. The high alcohol content (10.5%) is also hidden quite well.

In all, I enjoyed this beer, but I don't think its something I would seek out again. To me, it was a little overpowering and less subtle and complex than other Abbey ales.

89Vision, Jun 19, 2010
Photo of IntriqKen
4.38/5  rDev +5.3%
look: 4 | smell: 4 | taste: 4.5 | feel: 4.5 | overall: 4.5

Pours a dark, dark brown with only a hint of red tones. A ful 3 finger head of off-white craggy foam tops the brew and leaves a very sticky map as it melts away.

Aromas are caramel malts, dark brown sugars and some dark fruits.

Taste is also lots of dark complex fruits...plums, prunes, raisins. Dark, dark candied sugars and a bit of alcohol.

Lots of alcohol warmth after you swallow and as it settles in your tummy.

Very tingly mouthfeel from a combination of tiny carbonation and pepper-like spice.

Very, very nice dessert beer.

IntriqKen, Mar 02, 2008
Photo of biboergosum
4.24/5  rDev +1.9%
look: 4 | smell: 4.25 | taste: 4.25 | feel: 4.25 | overall: 4.25

750ml bottle, best before Jan 2014. I had no idea that this was a Quad - otherwise I might have gotten to it much sooner upon its arrival in Alberta a while back. It possesses a crappy, unmovable Champagne-style cork, which at least gives my recently idle corkscrew something to do - silver linings!

This beer pours a hazy, fine sediment-strewn dark copper-amber hue, with three ambitious fingers of puffy, shiny, thinly foamy ecru head, which leaves a few dense, sudsy instances of hanging curtain lace around the glass as it duly melts away.

It smells of dark, complex sour fruit - plums and bruised banana, mostly - earthy yeast, light caramel malt, a bit of astringent woodiness, a touch of brewer's sugar, mild nutty chocolate, and a musty, somewhat dank hoppiness. The taste is a fair bit sweeter than let on by the nose, with a steadily subtle caramel/toffee malt, some nicely muddled black/brown fruit - again led by overripe bananas and saucy prunes - bittersweet chocolate, mild clove and faint white pepper spice, ethereal Belgian yeast, and a dull hum of moderately musty, dusty, earthy hops.

The carbonation is average, with a bit of lifting pep, and nothing more, the body an almost hefty, but that's a-ok, medium weight, with a dulcet, understatedly creamy smoothness. It finishes on the sweet side, but in a oh-so moderated manner - fruit, malt, yeast, and a conspicuously absolute absence of booze warming.

While maybe not on a totally even par with the Rocheforts and Westvleterens of this focused little world, Val-Dieu's Grand Cru (I just love saying that, for some reason) still comes off as a serious player, in both flavour and otherworldly complexity. I still can't inwardly reconcile how they sneaked a 21-proof ABV offering past me so cleanly, so additional kudos for that.

biboergosum, Feb 13, 2013
Photo of GilGarp
4.45/5  rDev +7%
look: 4 | smell: 4 | taste: 5 | feel: 4 | overall: 4

750ml bottle served in a chalice glass.

Cork is so far down in the bottle I needed a corkscrew to get it out. Date is best by 03/09 so maybe a little older than the brewery intended.

Pours a deep dark mahogony brown with red highlights and creamy white head. The head is neither as thick or long lasting as I would have liked. Some lacing is left behind.

Aroma is coaxed out with a little swirling. It is pretty mild but has some nice sweet fruit and spice notes.

After lack-luster appearance and aroma, the flavor comes as a pleasant surprise. Depth and complexity are certainly not for want in this beer. Lots of rich dark fruits, raisins, green grapes, spice, and yeast all in abundance. Perhaps a little pumpkin but it's favorable. Sweetness prevails but there is a nice bitterness midway through and it finishes pretty dry with the alcohol evaporating off the tongue.

Mouthfeel is full body and pretty smooth considering the big carbonation. Very drinkable as the alcohol is only detected on the finish and it's well-hidden.

Overall it's not my favorite quad (there are many great examples) but it's very enjoyable and worth a try if you're a fan of the style.

GilGarp, Jun 15, 2009
Photo of Mar02x
4.45/5  rDev +7%
look: 4.5 | smell: 4.5 | taste: 4.5 | feel: 4 | overall: 4.5

I tried this beer on the Zythos beer festival in March 2011 for the first time, and it was the winner that day!! I loved it ever since.
At a beer tasting on the 26th of august this year, this beer had the honor to be tasted after the Dark Lord 2010. It hurts to say that it made a knee fall that evening. To the 'Brabander' I would like to say: I'll be back!

A - Beautiful dark brown with a nice head.

S - Very nice on the nose, dark fruit, some vinous characteristics.

T - Very rich flavor profile, a bit sweet and some wine like flavors.

M - Good carbonation, and smooth but maybe not quite as smooth as the Westvleteren 12.

O - Strong taste, nice after dinner beer. A very, very good beer.

Mar02x, Sep 05, 2011
Photo of mattfancett
3.1/5  rDev -25.5%

mattfancett, Sep 03, 2014
Photo of Sammy
4.1/5  rDev -1.4%
look: 4 | smell: 4 | taste: 4 | feel: 4 | overall: 4.5

Pour black, with not a thick body, virtually no head, I think this one 5 years old. Still good mouthfeel conistency. Spicey aroma. Taste of cocoa and licorice predominately, still very nice with supper. Rich aged taste, not your coriander. Sweetish spice.

Sammy, Aug 30, 2009
Photo of augustgarage
4.13/5  rDev -0.7%
look: 4.5 | smell: 4.5 | taste: 4 | feel: 4 | overall: 4

Cork date of 04/12 - not sure what vintage that makes this...served lightly chilled. Poured from a caged-and-corked 750mL bottle into my Trappist Westvleteren goblet.

The cork emerges with a burst of smoke and lends the air an immediate scent of currants and dessert wine.

Bottle glass brown body, reveals itself to be a complex mixture of garnet, carmine, and other deep reds with lighter highlights when held to a strong light. Extremely dark, yet with good clarity on first pour. A thin finger of creamy lasting wheat colored foam forms a dense sheen above the liquid's surface. Pasty tiers of lacing coat the sides, and a fine clear gloss rides down just beyond the edge of foam.

The aromatics are densely packed with esters, including a mixture of berries, currants, and wine (as mentioned above). As the beer warms and breathes, a hint of spice and leather emerges as well, while the yeast contributes it's own subtle complexity behind a bready malt note.

Tart around the edges, but primarily sweet, fruity, potently malty, with a wide array of secondary flavors from green figs to a light herbaceous quality that emerges in the finish. Hints of chocolate malt arrive long after the aftertaste should have given out - very impressive how slowly the flavors morph and evolve. Relatively sweet finish, though never cloying. A contemplative flavor profile which would lend this beer towards inclusion in the preparation of a meal, or paired with a good blue cheese (e.g. Roquefort, Gorgonzola, Bleu d'Auvergne) or ripened chevre (e.g. Humbolt Fog, Purple Haze, etc).

Effervescent, rich, full bodied mouthfeel, with hefty but by no means overwhelming alcohol content.

An excellent quad, a good value, with decent aging potential (maybe not enough to warrant picking up a 6L methuselah, but it's nice that you have the option).

augustgarage, Jun 11, 2011
Photo of tylermains
4.25/5  rDev +2.2%

tylermains, Sep 08, 2012
Photo of JoeAmerican77
3.98/5  rDev -4.3%
look: 3 | smell: 3 | taste: 4.5 | feel: 4 | overall: 4

App-Poured a rich dark mahogany, very little head which sooner than later equalled no head.

Smell- Smells faintly of dark fruits and alcohol, a little bit of licorice root. A slight sourness to the aroma almost lambic like.

Taste- A soft Sweet, front meets you from the get go. Generous amounts of candy sugars and phenol nips. A thick mallasses flavor and some sour citrus in the back. Once warmed is opens to a thick and sweet treat.

Mouthfeel- Full-bodied and thick in the mouth, blankets the tongue. Lightly dispersed carbonation and the alcohol tends to help clear the palate in a decent way at the end of each sip.

Drinkability: Heck yes, get one and enjoy the dark flavors that await. Brewery's best offering maybe?

JoeAmerican77, Oct 10, 2010
Photo of ekmoody
4.03/5  rDev -3.1%
look: 4.5 | smell: 4 | taste: 4 | feel: 4 | overall: 4

A nice deep ruby colored beer with about a finger of white head. Aroma of dark fruits, bready yeasts, some mild sweetness. Taste is similar to the smell, a delicious blend of fruit, spices, and malt. The 10.5% abv is definitely not apparent in the flavor. Overall I really enjoyed this one. Of course, it's not something I'd have more than one of in a sitting, but I'd certainly have one again.

ekmoody, May 16, 2010
Photo of tempest
4.13/5  rDev -0.7%
look: 4 | smell: 4 | taste: 4.5 | feel: 4 | overall: 3.5

Picked up a bottle from Abe's for about $9, served in a chalice.

This is big, sweet quad with enough spice to make you wonder if the yeast can really do that much work. It's fruity, of course, with dark fruit of blackberries, dates, and raisins. The spice elements is all very smooth with light vanilla, corriander, white pepper, and cinnamon. My only complaint is that while this doesn't drink cloyingly sweet, it can become a little much and this is a must-share beer.

tempest, May 18, 2008
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Val-Dieu Grand Cru from Brasserie de l'Abbaye du Val-Dieu
93 out of 100 based on 283 ratings.