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

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

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BA SCORE
93
outstanding

147 Reviews
THE BROS
-
no score

(Send Samples)
Reviews: 147
Hads: 318
rAvg: 4.18
pDev: 5.98%
Wants: 49
Gots: 37 | FT: 1
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:
Beer added by: BeerAdvocate on 12-02-2006

No notes at this time.
Beer: Reviews & Ratings
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Reviews: 147 | Hads: 318
Photo of csteeves
4.62/5  rDev +10.5%
look: 4 | smell: 4.5 | taste: 5 | feel: 4 | overall: 4.5

Poured from a 750 mL bottle into a goblet..
Nice dark color, nearly black, with a great aroma, slightly fruity, slightly malty, slight alcohol aroma but did not overpower the aroma...

the taste was the best part for me, which is, of course, very important...could taste the fruitiness, malt and hops, and could taste that the alcohol was there, but again, not overpowering...very easy to drink

for a beer that is 10.5% alcohol, this is very smooth, and i definitely put it right up with the other quadrupels i have tried, 3 philosophers and st. bernardus...great beer, pick it up if you ever find it.. (608 characters)

Photo of deadonhisfeet
4.6/5  rDev +10%
look: 4.5 | smell: 4.5 | taste: 4.75 | feel: 4 | overall: 4.75

Poured from a corked and caged bottle into a Rochefort chalice. It's a deep, dark brown pour; clear when held up to the light. I get a nice lacing of khaki head that dissipates down to a thin film with lacing around the edges, but doesn't ever seem to vanish completely. The nose is divine. It has all the indications of a fantastic quad. There are big sweet bready notes, sugary cakes fresh from the oven, chocolate, and figs soaked in rum with fudge. Simply heaven.

One sip of this one and I was staggered. Full body and an overload of sweet, boozy, dessert-like flavors. Tons of spice cake, dark fruits, and brownies, all swimming in port. It's very reminiscent of Pannepot, only with a bit more booziness up front. The sweet flavors are so intense, it keeps catching you by surprise (even after several sips). As the beer warms a bit and de-gasses, the port-like notes start to deepen a bit on the back of the palate and the booziness starts to seem more tempered. Either that, or it's the buzz kicking in.

This beer is like a dessert and after-dinner liqueur all rolled into one. My only gripe is that the booziness, while delightful, is perhaps just a bit too prevalent and lends the beer a somewhat cloying character, reducing the drinkability. Perhaps my palate is just too sensitive and is over-reacting to too much of a good thing. At any rate, this is certainly one of the best quads I have had yet. A delightful drinking experience I must recommend to every fan of the style. (1,489 characters)

Photo of avalon07
4.6/5  rDev +10%
look: 4.5 | smell: 4.5 | taste: 4.5 | feel: 4.5 | overall: 5

A: Poured from a bottle to a goblet. had a dark brown color and a cloudy consistency. There was a two inch, off white, foamy, long-lasting head. Very good lacing.

S: A big aroma of dark fruit, yeast, sugar, and malt.

T: Tasted of Belgian yeast, toffee, malt, dark fruit (plums, raisins), and some spices (pepper). Slightly boozy, but not overwhelmingly so. A very focused, complex and powerful flavor.

M: A highly carbonated beer with a smooth, prickly finish. Medium-bodied.

O: One of the best Quadrupels I've tried in a while (or ever). Very, very drinkable. (564 characters)

Photo of barleywinefiend
4.6/5  rDev +10%
look: 4 | smell: 4 | taste: 5 | feel: 4 | overall: 5

A: Poured a deep purplish color with good carbonation leaving a nice dirty cap and bubbles, some lacing

S: Sweet candy, loads of fruit(grapes, lighter prunes, figs, very nice

T: Amazing. The moment I sipped this I said "Wow". Very tasty. Loads of nice dark grapes, not overly ripe but fresh, some figs, raisins and a light prune, some candy sugar, brown sugar, molasses. So sweet and easy toi drink. The booze is light but no way did it taste at 10%. Killer beer.

M: Medium body, not heavy, booze is masked well, loads of flavor

O: I believe this sets the standard for Gran Cru's. I found it to be awesome and it beer be at $9 (630 characters)

Photo of BobZ
4.59/5  rDev +9.8%
look: 4 | smell: 5 | taste: 4.5 | feel: 4.5 | overall: 4.5

I’ve wanted to sample this ale for a while, finally found a bottle at a shop in Maine. 25.4 oz. bottle poured into my Duvel tulip.

Appearance: Murky dark brown with a very nice tan head, building to about an inch. Very nice lacing.

Smell: Very nice on the nose, dark fruit, some vinous characteristics, plus some hints of spice. As the beer warms the aromas become richer and more intense. This beer smells as good as St. Bernardus Abt 12 (maybe even a bit better).

Taste: Very rich flavor profile, the same as the nose plus some chocolate. As the beer warms the flavors really develop, again similar to the Abt. 12 with the wine like characteristics really adding to my enjoyment of this beer.

Mouthfeel: Pleasant on the palate, good carbonation, and smooth but maybe not quite as smooth as the Abt. 12.

Overall: Very, very good, in fact much better than I anticipated. This beer may very well end up in my top 10 quad/Bsda’s. (938 characters)

Photo of HeyItsChili
4.58/5  rDev +9.6%
look: 4.5 | smell: 4 | taste: 5 | feel: 4.5 | overall: 4.5

A - Poured from a bottle into a tulip glass. Pours dark garnet/raisin with a booming, creamy khaki head that sloooowly dissipates.

S - Dark fruits, malt, dark brown Belgian candy sugar.

T - Really amazingly rich and detailed. Tons of dark fruits, prunes, raisins, dark brown sugar, molasses, cinnamon, nutmeg, a really dark abbey ale quality.

M - Creamy, velvety, decent carbonation. (387 characters)

Photo of jisom123
4.52/5  rDev +8.1%
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. (310 characters)

Photo of ccrida
4.52/5  rDev +8.1%
look: 4 | smell: 4.5 | taste: 4.5 | feel: 5 | overall: 4.5

Review #1000!
Served in the small Val Dieu Grand Cru goblet, it's dark brownish red with a big light tan head, creamy on the edges but some bigger bubbles in the middle, leaving heavy sheets of foam. On draught (at La Trappe in San Francisco), which normally is a nail in the coffin for the style, but really didn't hurt the head much at all here.

Smell is strong rich malt, big grape flavors, but an equally assertive spicy ester, as well as perceived dryness. Very unique and distinguished for the style.

Taste is pretty smooth, rich, but really not as intense as the noes, which is first a let down. Still, it's pretty full, lot's of special B like raisin notes, red wined, with some noble hop spice, grass, light hints of bread pudding and caramel, alcohol character.

Mouthfeel is highly digestible, medium light body, with a bit of a dry chalkiness as well. Super smooth.

Drinkability is pretty good, one of the fruiter quads, big flavor without being a palate buster. The light body also really drives home what a benchmark example this is of the style. (1,068 characters)

Photo of Brutaltruth
4.5/5  rDev +7.7%

An excellent offering from Val-Dieu. Ale pours with a nice ruby brown hue and thick frothy
foamy head that leaves significant lacing. An exceptional nose of dark plums, Belgian candy
sugars, dark cherries, sweet earthy breads, and light Belgian spices of coriander and anise.
Taste is unbelievable. Dark fruits wash over the palate in waves....plums, figs, black raisins,
and that wonderful sweet Belgian candy sugar. Alcohol is far from present on the nose but
well represented on the back with coriander and a hint of sweet orange. Sweet finish that
lasts long and full. A sweet treat for all Belgian lovers. A WOW kind of experience.
Best of the Val-Dieu's I have had. Outstanding. One of the best ales I have had this year to
date. (754 characters)

Photo of Derek
4.5/5  rDev +7.7%
look: 4.5 | smell: 4.5 | taste: 4.5 | feel: 4.5 | overall: 4.5

A: Very dark, brown-black with a huge, bubbly, light-tan head. Excellent retention & lacing.

S: Dark fruit & pleasant spicy phenols. Truly excellent.

T: Figs, raisins, cherries, light spicing, brown sugar, cider, nuts, hints of cocao, nicely balanced bitterness, slight alcohol warmth, though I'd never guess it was this strong! Flavourful, perfectly balanced, well-crafted.

M: Well-attenuated, moderately full body has only a slight hint of residual sweetness. Good carbonation.

D: A really easy-drinking Belgian for its strength.

I'd say this is more of a strong dark than a quad, but all around, it's a great brew. (622 characters)

Photo of willjschmidt
4.5/5  rDev +7.7%
look: 4.5 | smell: 4.5 | taste: 4.5 | feel: 4.5 | overall: 4.5

Served on-tap at La Trappe in SF in the proper glass.

A: Pours a dark brown hue with a tan head.

S: Sweet dark fruits, some brown sugar.

T: Dark fruits in the form of plums, figs, and some cherries. Some brown and candied sugar in there as well. A great quad.

M: Smooth and rich.

D: A very drinkable beer, I could easily sip this all night although the high ABV would get me in the end. (391 characters)

Photo of brewdenver
4.5/5  rDev +7.7%
look: 4.5 | smell: 4.5 | taste: 4.5 | feel: 4.5 | overall: 4.5

Wonderful beer. Active frothy head with pour. Used a New Belgium .47L tulip glass. Color is dark, around 18-23 lovibond. Taste was sweet with hints of caramel and red wine. Had a sort of resin aroma. Very active on the palate. Definetly getting more for the price I found it. (275 characters)

Photo of beertunes
4.5/5  rDev +7.7%
look: 4 | smell: 4 | taste: 4.5 | feel: 5 | overall: 5

Served in a glass that was a cross between a flute and a tulip. Poured a very dark brown, really light black, with 3/4 of an inch of tan head that had good retention and lacing.

The aroma was a slightly sweet blend of malt and fruity scents, not really any yeast on the nose. the flavors were also rich and dark, featuring a bit of fruit, solid malts and a bit of yeast.

The body was full, rich and smooth. Drinkability was great, couldn't be better. Overall, a true gem of a beer, worth seeking out. (502 characters)

Photo of woosterbill
4.5/5  rDev +7.7%
look: 4.5 | smell: 4.5 | taste: 4.5 | feel: 4.5 | overall: 4.5

On-tap at Moeder Lambic Fontainas, served in a Val-Dieu goblet.

A: Deep persimmon body under a finger of creamy, very fine tan head. Great retention, good lace. Excellent.

S: Rich, sweet dark fruits, dessert wine, and a chocolate. Lots of figs, grapes, raisins, and plums. Minor spice, chocolate, and alcohol. Terrific.

T: Fruity up front, with some rich malt sweetness building in behind the dark fruits. Spicy booze on the finish. Sweet, complex, and great.

M: Fairly full-bodied, sticky, and full of creamy, rich carbonation. Decadent.

O: This was a spectacular Quad, probably my favorite that I drank while in Belgium (no, I didn't have Westvleteren, but I did have tons of Rochefort 10).

Cheers! (706 characters)

Photo of feloniousmonk
4.5/5  rDev +7.7%
look: 4.5 | smell: 4.5 | taste: 4.5 | feel: 4.5 | overall: 4.5

Deep violet, opaque, nearly black, almosr, under a fine sheath of creamy froth...I like the look, so far...

Aroma: lovely, and uplifting, sweet and delightful...yeasty, brady, some delicate fruit...some dark malt notes, too, some black pepper, licorice, cola....

Taste: mmmm-MMM!!!Espresso whispers, cola hushes, dark fruits and anise, black pepper peeps in, black and chocolate malt, and delicious Belgian malt and yeast. Mmm, darkness and spice aplenty! Yu-um! That's what makes this special, this particular sparkling spiciness....a bit rough in the texture, burrs against the buds to much, methinks...but then this unique and wondrous flavor creeps in ...too much...

Wonderful beer...wish I had a caseful at hand...alas, and alack! (744 characters)

Photo of Mar02x
4.45/5  rDev +6.5%
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. (700 characters)

Photo of eric5bellies
4.45/5  rDev +6.5%
look: 4.5 | smell: 4.5 | taste: 4.5 | feel: 4 | overall: 4.5

Drank from a Chimay Chalice

A - Pours a dark mahogany colour, off white creamy head that stays around for a while.

S - Heavy aromas of maly and sweet stewed fruits with some spice.

T - Complex flavours of malt and spice with some stewed fruits a hint of molassis. very well balanced indeed.

M - Medium to full body and medium carbonation.

D - This is a top shelf quad, that I enjoyed very much. (399 characters)

Photo of jayhawk73
4.45/5  rDev +6.5%
look: 4 | smell: 4 | taste: 4.5 | feel: 4.5 | overall: 5

A- Pours black w/ a massive three finger cocoa head. Excellent carbonation and lacing. Head sticks around for a really long time, leaving tons of lacing on the glass. No light gets into this brew, it's super dark.

S- Malt, yeast, cherry, and dark fruits. Nose isn't as strong as I'd like, but still very pleasant and balanced.

T- Plum, cherries, malt, alcohol, yeast, and some dark fruits. This is a really tasty Quad. Nice smooth aftertaste as well. Really enjoying this beer- glad I found it.

M- Very smooth, and the malt coats your throat w/ a nice thick layer of Quad-ness. Full bodied beer that goes down fairly easy, especially for the style.

O- Really nice beer in one of my favorite categories. Opens up quite a bit w/ warming. If you see it, buy it. Highly recommended. (785 characters)

Photo of DenverLogan
4.45/5  rDev +6.5%
look: 4 | smell: 4.5 | taste: 4.5 | feel: 4.25 | overall: 4.5

Corked bottle...nice pop...poured in a Corsendonk chalice. Cork says 10/2014.
Dark brown with a beige head.
Rich aroma of sweet malts, slight plum, pear & prune.
Significant carbonation and big mouthfeel.
Flavors of candy sugar, molassas, dark roasted malts, caramel, cocoa, slight carob, rosemary, sarsaparilla...lets give this a few minutes...
Yeah baby...there's a small remaining head and the aroma remains strong and sweet...flavors are strong with a sweet biting malt distinctiveness.
I'll admit I did represent this brewery in California in 2007 and found all their brews excellent...great yeast and big malt profiles. The Grand Cru has a touch more of a bite than the others, but nevertheless a lovely beer, fresh or with a few years age. (747 characters)

Photo of brentk56
4.45/5  rDev +6.5%
look: 4.5 | smell: 4.5 | taste: 4.5 | feel: 4 | overall: 4.5

Appearance: Pours a dark amber color with a classic Belgian head that sheets the chalice with lace; nice retenttion, too

Smell: Plum-sweet aroma, with cherry, licorice and bubblegum influences

Taste: Opens with bubblegum, although not quite that sweet and then expands into a range of interesting fruity flavors, predominately plum, but also cherry, strawberry, green apple and pear; after the swallow, the darker influences emerge, with fig, licorice and a hint of tobacco

Mouthfeel: Medium to full body and creamy; could stand to be a tad thicker; moderate carbonation

Drinkability: Great example of the style; I often see the other Val Dieus around, but this should be more widely available (697 characters)

Photo of trevorjn06
4.45/5  rDev +6.5%
look: 4.5 | smell: 4.5 | taste: 4.5 | feel: 4 | overall: 4.5

Pours a deep mahogany/brown with a thick, tight mouse-like head that lingers. Thick lacing down the glass.

Aroma is rich stone fruits, figs, plums, raisins, molasses, burnt sugar and dark caramels. Wonderful.

Taste follows the nose with sweet, dark caramels and dark fruits. There is a bit of burnt sugar, sweet malt, molasses, moving into plums, raisins, figs and a bit of Munich malt like bready character. Finish has hints of alcohol and dark fruits that linger for awhile. A very pleasing taste that lingers.

Mouthfeel is medium bodied with medium carbonation.

Overall this is an amazing beer: strong, full bodied flavor with a great complexity and lasting finish. Highly recommended. (692 characters)

Photo of glid02
4.43/5  rDev +6%
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. (955 characters)

Photo of jwinship83
4.43/5  rDev +6%
look: 5 | smell: 4.5 | taste: 4.5 | feel: 4.5 | overall: 4

750ml bottle with a cork that put up an unnaturally hard fight. after getting the cork out, i see that it reads "03/10." i assume this is a best by date. great thinking! let's put it where you cant see it until youve already opened it! into the duvel tulip it goes.

A- this one pours a murky and very dark brown colored body. hints of ruby can be seen along the sides of my glass. small bubbles can be seen racing to the top if held up to the light. on top forms a large creamy looking light khaki colored head thats composed of tightly knit bubbles. the head lasts forever, and leaves behind a wall of sticky lacing. perfection in quad form.

S- sweet and bready malts upfront with lots of dark fruits following closely behind. cherries, plums, figs, pears, and raisins. somewhat spicy. anise mostly. very nice. i really like where this beer is going already.

T- very sweet bready malts. very fruity. cherries, plums, figs, grapes, pears, and raisins. a decent bite from the alcohol, but its a quad, what do you expect? spicy with pepper and anise.

M- medium to full bodied. fuller than i would expect from this style. a lower level of carbonation as well. both of those things really work for this one. a pretty severe warming from the alcohol (considering the modest amount for a quad). i would guess its stronger than 10.5%.

D- too strong to be sessionable, but goddamn would i want another! very underrated. check thsi one out if you get the chance. one of the best quads ive ever tried. (1,498 characters)

Photo of daledeee
4.43/5  rDev +6%
look: 4.5 | smell: 4 | taste: 4.5 | feel: 5 | overall: 4.5

I popped the cork from this 750ml bottle and fruit smell started emminating from the bottle. This beer has a head that will not go away with a dark brown clear body.

The nose is fruit, yeast and musty.

The taste is fruity like grapes or cherries. Background notes are sugar and caramel. Very very nice drink. Alcohol is very warming but this is an easy to drink beer. (371 characters)

Photo of Kegatron
4.42/5  rDev +5.7%
look: 4 | smell: 4.5 | taste: 4.5 | feel: 4 | overall: 4.5

On tap @ Chez Moeder Lambic Fontainas (Brussels, Belgium) on 7/5/12. Served in goblet.

Pours a near black in the glass, topped with 1 ½ fingers of rich off-white froth. This retains with a thin creaminess that soaps the sides of the glass with thick swathes of glass. The aroma is a dark fruit explosion, with a strong spiciness (anise is really sticking out) and a sticky underpinning of molasses and brown sugar flavors. This is very rich and flavorful in the nose.

The taste is RICH! Dark fruit, cocoa, molasses, brown sugar, toffee, and licorice all leading into a dry and spicy feeling finish. The mouthfeel is fuller bodied, with a light prickliness on the tongue and then more of a smooth silkiness that fills out the rest of the mouth. The alcohol here is present and while not overly warm in any way, it does start to wear on the palette just a bit.

Man, this was a damn good Quad! It was extremely flavorful and smooth for the size and was just a real treat to end our meal with. I’m glad we can get these beers in the States. Val-Dieu is on my radar in a big way now. (1,087 characters)

Val-Dieu Grand Cru from Brasserie de l'Abbaye du Val-Dieu
93 out of 100 based on 147 ratings.