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

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

Educational use only; do not reuse.
BA SCORE
93
outstanding

147 Reviews
THE BROS
-
no score

(Send Samples)
Reviews: 147
Hads: 320
rAvg: 4.18
pDev: 8.85%
Wants: 52
Gots: 38 | 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: 320
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 danedelman
4.42/5  rDev +5.7%
look: 4 | smell: 4.5 | taste: 4.5 | feel: 4 | overall: 4.5

A-dark brown with creamy white head. Nice lacing on glass as you drink.

S-dried fruit, candi sugar, molasses and malt dark

T-very smooth at 10.5%. Lots of raisin, fig, and dark candi sugar all very well blended together. All work well together and produce an awesome brew.

M-very drinkable, if the abv wasn't so high could session this one!! (344 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 Impfan
4.73/5  rDev +13.2%
look: 5 | smell: 4.5 | taste: 5 | feel: 4.5 | overall: 4.5

Aroma and flavor of dark, candied fruit, caramel, toffee, clove, banana, tart Branston pickle, ginger, lemon and orange peel, and honeyed melon, cherries, grapes, and pears. Very complex and appealing with just the right level of carbonation. One of the better Grand Crus I’ve tasted. (286 characters)

Photo of abents
4.75/5  rDev +13.6%
look: 4.5 | smell: 4.5 | taste: 5 | feel: 5 | overall: 4.5

Pours a dark reddish brown color with huge light tan head that laces sporadically. Smells of yeasty bread with a hint of sweetness.
wow this an interesting brew a whole lot going on with the taste buds. Sweet malty, fruitiness lead into various spices, maybe anise, pepper?, and red fruits. Way more complex than what my lowly palate can detect, but sooo interesting and delicious. Slight alcohol at the finish, but so smooth and exciting, this is one BIG beer.
Mouthfeel is probably one of the best I have ever had, it has this creamy texture upfront that leads to a refreshing crispness at the end. Great, great beer put on to try again list. (645 characters)

Photo of JohnnyS17
4.34/5  rDev +3.8%
look: 4 | smell: 5 | taste: 4 | feel: 4 | overall: 4.5

The color is a nice mahogany with a slight reddish or purple tint. A tall white head with a hint of tan. Relatively transparent with some cloudiness. It smells sweet like maple syrup and brown sugar. It kind of reminds me of pancakes, but with a hint of alcohol. Haha.

The taste is nicely sweet, like raisins and brown sugar. The high ABV is hidden well with the sweetness. A light medium body that brings back the maple syrup idea. Light carbonation.

Overall, I really enjoyed this beer. I paired it with my saltier steak and it was perfect. (544 characters)

Photo of WoogityBoogity
4.07/5  rDev -2.6%
look: 3.5 | smell: 4 | taste: 4 | feel: 4 | overall: 4.5

Artificial cork, date stamped "05/12". Cork was a bitch to remove, and it seems as if there was barely any carbonation.

A - Dark mahogany body... poured straight down tulip glass and barely any head formed. Cleary body, although dark. After a minute, head settles to almost a tiny froth. If twirled, microbubbles reduce from body.

S - Simple malt, cinnamon aroma. Very mild fruity esters for a "Grand Cru".

T - Malt complexity is limited... but stands out. A few peppery spice phenols. Finish is dry. Label claims 10.5% ABV, though alcohol taste is well hidden (or is lying).

M - Medium body, low carbonation.

D - Very drinkable; would pair well with dessert if you're looking for a Quad that doesn't overpower.

---

It almost seems like the beer I tasted was way too young.

I'm not sure if I, like the person just below me, got a bad batch - but it seems like this was bottled before tertiary fermentation was completed. I believe Val-Dieu doesn't use bottle fermentation, so it almost seems like after racking, Val-Dieu didn't complete the carbonation process.

Either that, or very simply... this beer is way too young (which I don't believe). As it's bottled, it travels from brewer to importer over seas by boat (30 days), then to distributor's warehouse (another 30 days), to store shelf (couple weeks)... so I'm not sure of the situation.

But recent reviews don't match previous reviews. (1,403 characters)

Photo of discovolante65
4.35/5  rDev +4.1%
look: 4 | smell: 4 | taste: 4.5 | feel: 4.5 | overall: 4.5

Had this on tap at Track84 in Warwick, RI

Pours a prune-purple brownish color with a 1-inch off white head that reminded me of sea-foam.

Smells of brown sugar, malty/toffee goodness, and raisins/cherries. Slight alcohol smell at the end.

Tastes of malts/brown sugar, toffee and maybe caramel. The taste is almost an exact replica of the smell.

Mouthfeel is creamy, fizzy,and lingering with deliciousness. coated my mouth and throat nicely for quite a while.

Drinkability- were it not for the high ABV, I would've had more, but I was driving, so I shifted to something with a lower ABV. Next time I come here, not driving, and having more than one of these. Excellent Quad!!! (679 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 fragilemacabre
3.88/5  rDev -7.2%
look: 3.5 | smell: 3 | taste: 4 | feel: 4.5 | overall: 4.5

I first tried this fresh from chillage, and I was NOT pleased. It reminded me of the bitter, flat characteristics of Gulden Draak (which I had been led to have high hopes for).

Another try while it was warmer, however? It has a good bready smell to it, almost a sourdough, with a deep, dark sweetness to it, and its head and lacing upon warming up are impressive. The molasses flavor that was overpowering and cloying while cold mellow out into a maltier and bittersweet profile.

I won't ever drink this cold, but warmed, it is happy for the taste buds (and the warming of cheeks) (583 characters)

Photo of 4thoseabout2bock
4/5  rDev -4.3%
look: 4 | smell: 4 | taste: 4 | feel: 4 | overall: 4

Poured very dark and clear into goblet
nice lacing

toffee, caramel sweetness in the aroma

The taste was surprisingly sweet (even for a strong Belgian beer) and lacked complexity as compared to other vleteren quads. I got some toffee/caramel/candy sugar, and a little alcohol. Maybe a little raisin. But not really much else. This was sort of like a St Bernadus 12 "light" in flavor -- it had the same top notes, but not much behind it.

Glad I tried it, and nothing wrong with it. But there are other quads I prefer. (519 characters)

Photo of stbfan
4.03/5  rDev -3.6%
look: 4.5 | smell: 4 | taste: 4 | feel: 4 | overall: 4

Very nice looking, dark brown with ruby hues to light. lots of sediment. Huge off white head. Smells of cloves, bread, yummy. Tastses like a medium to thick mouthfeel.tastes of cloves, belgian yeast, a little bitterness in finish. almost metallic. Very drinkable.Nice quadruple. Nice lacing on glass. Finish is a little lacking though. (335 characters)

Photo of 89Vision
3.64/5  rDev -12.9%
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. (1,139 characters)

Photo of alfistheman
2.51/5  rDev -40%
look: 4 | smell: 3 | taste: 2 | feel: 3.5 | overall: 2

750ML bottle, with 2/11 drink by date on cork
Good appearance, light brown semi transparent with good amount of lacing.
Smell is of fruits and chocolate, hard to seperate the complexity.
There is an immediate off taste that over powers the taste of the malt and yeast... is that dextrose? I drink natural ice time to time and I know that offending flavor... Maybe the Belgium call it sucrose... but I believe thats a different flavor, more sweet than chemical like adjunct. This tastes like adjunct and it over powers all the other flavors... i get a little hint of chocolate on the after taste and a big alcohol bite which is expected at 10.5%
The mouthfeel is pretty good, bubbly carbination, little oily but thats what caries the after taste... the mouthfeel is only thing even coming close to saving this!
Drinkability... well it was a 750ml and I won't be buying it again. I had to force myself to get the last glass down. My GF didn't like it either and agreed it had a Macro American taste even though its from Belgium.
Can't believe the reviews give this an A! This is the only Val-Dieu offering i've had... and the only Quad but this doesn't come close to american belgium offerings from Allagash and Ommegang. (1,219 characters)

Photo of TomGavin
3.98/5  rDev -4.8%
look: 4 | smell: 3.5 | taste: 4.5 | feel: 4 | overall: 3.5

From a 750ml bottle into a Chimay goblet. Pours rootbeer brown with a gray-ish white head of about 1/8th of an inch. Great head retention and lacing.

Nose: Caramel covered almonds, rhubarb, cola malt and vanilla.

Mouthfeel: Full bodied and creamy with mild carbonation.

Taste: Chewy caramel, wether's originals--but without any diacetyl slipperiness--and roasted vanilla smores malt. The finish is fruity and brief, but satisfying nonetheless.

Comment: I never noticed the ABV--10.5%--and this is the charm of a well executed and dangerously tasty beer. (561 characters)

Photo of ekmoody
4.03/5  rDev -3.6%
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. (394 characters)

Photo of PHSCAPT
4.33/5  rDev +3.6%
look: 4.5 | smell: 4 | taste: 4.5 | feel: 4 | overall: 4.5

A – mahogany dark, turbid orange when held to a light; poured at 60F into a Chimay goblet; a pinky finger of creamy white head
S – seriously…I get macaroni and cheese mixed with an apple shed
T – Nicely boozy; sweet dark fruits with slightly dry finish
M – finely carbonated, very smooth
O - Definitely a re-buy (321 characters)

Photo of graywalker
3.43/5  rDev -17.9%
look: 4.5 | smell: 4 | taste: 3 | feel: 4 | overall: 3

Pours very dark, with very little head that dissipates quickly. Aroma is lots of malt, dark fruits, and a little bit of spice. The alcohol is barely present in the aroma and does not even come to the front in the taste. Mouthfeel and carbonation are very nice but this beer is way too sweet for me. I love quads but I think I would turn this down next time. Give me a Rochfort or Pennepot Fisherman's ale instead. (413 characters)

Photo of JoBoTo
4.15/5  rDev -0.7%
look: 4 | smell: 4 | taste: 4 | feel: 4.5 | overall: 4.5

The cork kicked my ass on this one. Took me a good 5 minutes to get this little thing loose. Didn't want to crack it so I took it slow, but it was in there tighter than... Nevermind. 75cl, 50-60 degrees, cork says Val-Dieu 03/10

Pours what originally was a brownish gray from the early on, but ends up a dark mahogany. Poured into a Duvel Chalice. Gave it about a finger and a half of head. Looking for lacing or colored edges and I am seeing nothing. Not like Stone XII dark, or Yeti dark, but still completely opaque, and no edging. Head is still there lingering and not dissipating quickly at all.

Smells of malt, yeast, and sweet...raisins. Sweetness is detectable, cherries cam to mind also, but can't relate it to a high or low, just in there quickly and disappearing rapidly. Seems like a cinnamony, spicy in there too. Sadly, I smell the metallic, (maybe yeasty) smell that I commonly smell in tripels and quads. I can feel my heart burn starting already.

Medium to thick body, wow, I was moving it around my mouth and a little got to the back and just attacked my throat. Needed to swallow before I got my ass kicked. Let's try this again. Tongue tingle is mild, with feeling all over. Leaves behind a nice coating of yeasty goodness. No alcohol burn, despite being 10.5% Seems to tickle your tongue tip more than any other area. Foams when played with

Yeast and an astery onslaught. Prunes maybe... raisins. Seems to be a fruit that I am not commonly familiar with. Definitely a sweet flavor in there that threw a rock at my attention, but is hiding when I turn to find. There is no metallic taste, thankfully, I was really hoping there wouldn't be. A darker malt... good all over flavor. The entire tongue gets to play in the beer. Thick coating left throughout your mouth. Feels like you could chew the residual left over. Just all over your mouth.

This is a good little find. Picked it up while in Spain for I believe 6 euro. Not bad for 75cl. I could see this being a gateway to some of the more complex. Not overly aggressive, except its drop kick to my uvula. I enjoyed it, and would recommend it to those that enjoy this style. (2,150 characters)

Photo of GustoMan
4.85/5  rDev +16%
look: 4.5 | smell: 4.5 | taste: 5 | feel: 5 | overall: 5

This was my first taste of Val'Dieu Gran Cru and let me tell you that it wont be the last! Like I just read by another taster it has such a silky smooth mouth feel and the lightly well balanced fruity taste was well balanced with the high gravity alcohol level. There is also a slight spice taste that only sneaks in and doesnt take over. I might just have to visit Brasserie De L'Abbey DU Val-Dieu in Aubel Belgium someday and thank them for such a well done brew! (465 characters)

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 micalj
4.23/5  rDev +1.2%
look: 4 | smell: 3.5 | taste: 4.5 | feel: 4.5 | overall: 4.5

A -- very dark, but drank this at night in the hot tub...
Bottle -- 1 pint 9.4 fluid ounces, APV 10.5% per label.
S -- In my opinion, the frothy creamy head seemed to blanket the smell, acting as a great insulator for the wonderful surprise underneath.
T -- Wow! This is very enjoyable. I tried to separate the flavors, but it works so well together, I had difficulty here. I did get raisins, molasses, and a bit of brown sugar mixed with a warming but subtle alcohol. Overall, the taste blends together to be just down right soft, delicios and warming.
M --Smooth and creamy. The head persists, and while it becomes more airy as the head settles, it remains creamy. Warm and wonderful rum cake sweetness followed by just a bit of bitter finsih.
D -- What can I say. I enjoyed this brew. It is worth an extended taste test. I would by another case of this, but there are so many beers to try, I will move on for now. (916 characters)

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