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

Val-Dieu Grand CruVal-Dieu Grand Cru

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

248 Ratings
THE BROS
-
no score

(send 'em beer!)
Ratings: 248
Reviews: 136
rAvg: 4.18
pDev: 10.29%


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: 248 | Reviews: 136 | Show All Ratings:
Photo of liamt07
liamt07

Ontario (Canada)

4.18/5  rDev 0%
look: 4.5 | smell: 4 | taste: 4 | feel: 4.5 | overall: 4.5

Bottle split with Steve and crew at Beer Bistro. 75cl, 2006 vintage. Into a few tulips.

Pours dark brown, relatively opaque with some great head and retention. Mild spotty lace. Nose of dark fruits, tons of spice, cloves and pepper, all taking on a subtler and well integrated flavour given the 5 years of age on it. Taste has more of the dark fruits, plum, spice and a nutty quality. Fruits are rich, as is the body. Grape skins and chocolate. Alcohol hasn't yet disappeared. Full body and rich feel to it, not overwhelmingly so. Complex and a nice treat.

Serving type: bottle

04-19-2011 18:23:48 | More by liamt07
Photo of mithrascruor
mithrascruor

California

3.7/5  rDev -11.5%
look: 4.5 | smell: 4 | taste: 3.5 | feel: 4 | overall: 3.5

750 mL bottle poured into a chalice.

Appearance: A very dark pour, with reddish-brown highlights at the edges. Nice off-white head is creamy and foamy, with good retention. Some nice lacing as well.

Smell: Quite different than I imagined, since it is not heavy at all. I am getting the lightness of, say, strawberries and cream, though the actual aroma is more of caramel and fruit.

Taste: Has a pretty mellow fruity caramel flavor. I catch some raisins, apples, and hints of spice (cinnamon, nutmeg). Not much in the way of darker fruits, clove, yeast, or brown sugar. There's some more sweetness up front, and a bit of bitterness in the aftertaste, but overall, a pretty even keel throughout.

Mouthfeel: Medium-bodied and smooth with light yet constant carbonation.

Drinkability: High ABV but not really apparent in the flavor.

A nice beer, but I don't really feel impressed by it. It lacks the dark, heady flavors that I generally associate with this style, and after a while starts to taste a tad too sweet. Not bad, but I was expecting something more and I'll pass on this in the future.

Serving type: bottle

03-22-2011 00:02:34 | More by mithrascruor
Photo of impending
impending

California

4.28/5  rDev +2.4%
look: 3 | smell: 5 | taste: 4.5 | feel: 4 | overall: 3.5

750ml into a tulip. Pours a clear dark copper, backlit reveals a dark garnet. Dense towering head recedes leaving clumpy froth dangling.

Aroma as if a strong dark noël. Crisp clean spicy. Some smells seem happy, no reason really they just do, as does this. Superb

Long evolving flavor. Lots of candied dark sugars. Indigestion is a possibility. Nice peppery alcohol punches through momentarily before the phenolic long sweet finish begins. Warms well. Aftertaste till tomorrow. Thick viscous mouthfeel.
more of a strong dark than a quad
cheers
jd

Serving type: bottle

03-20-2011 04:22:15 | More by impending
Photo of brewdenver
brewdenver

Colorado

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.

Serving type: bottle

03-16-2011 07:36:26 | More by brewdenver
Photo of eric5bellies
eric5bellies

Australia

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.

Serving type: bottle

11-30-2010 15:33:26 | More by eric5bellies
Photo of alcstradamus
alcstradamus

Washington

4.3/5  rDev +2.9%
look: 4.5 | smell: 3.5 | taste: 4.5 | feel: 4.5 | overall: 4.5

Near black pour with a huge foam head and good lacing.

Aroma is raisin/caramel sweetness and some roasty malt. Notes of yeast and spices. Very peppery.

The flavor is toned way down in the spice department and the raisin is kicked way up. This is pretty damn good! Lots of yeast and a very light bit of acetone in the finish.

The body is on the fuller side of medium. Carbonation is high but soft and still keeps the beer a bit creamy.

Overall this is a very fine quad. Not complex at all, but quite tasty and easy drinking for the huge ABV.

Serving type: bottle

11-15-2010 01:55:47 | More by alcstradamus
Photo of charlzm
charlzm

California

3.9/5  rDev -6.7%
look: 4 | smell: 4 | taste: 4 | feel: 4 | overall: 3.5

Consumed October 17th, 2010 at the Los Angeles Beer Week Festival.

Beer pours a clear but very dark brown with a clingy one finger off-white head.

Nutmeg and dark sweet malt in the nose.

The flavor is mostly about bready malt; molasses, nutmeg and prunes play supporting roles. A sharp white grape note leaps in near the finish.

Smooth but boozy on the finish.

Its heft renders it not terribly drinkable, but impressive nonetheless.

Serving type: bottle

10-27-2010 03:49:14 | More by charlzm
Photo of dasenebler
dasenebler

Maine

2.83/5  rDev -32.3%
look: 4.5 | smell: 3.5 | taste: 2 | feel: 4 | overall: 3

750ml, Netherlands, best by cork date 03/12.

Brooding brown, very dark. Great head laces with some serious staying power.

Aroma is quite bready and warmly spicy. Dark fruit notes.

The flavor is not terrible, I just find it too sweet and flawed in the end, sort of like the beer hasn't finished fermenting yet. Lots of brown sugar and toffee, coupled with slight dark cherry flavors. That's it really. I was expecting more depth. Alcohol and spices start to kick in as the beer comes to room, but overall the alcohol is well-disguised. Slick and oily mouthfeel. Soft, creamy carbonation.

This beer succeeds in every aspect except the most important: flavor. Maybe this bottle needed more age. Yet, with a cork date of 3/12, I would expect this to have been bottled in 2008 or earlier, so it should really be much more drinkable than it is.

Serving type: bottle

10-15-2010 00:09:54 | More by dasenebler
Photo of WoogityBoogity
WoogityBoogity

Florida

4.08/5  rDev -2.4%
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.

Serving type: bottle

10-12-2010 01:58:29 | More by WoogityBoogity
Photo of JoeAmerican77
JoeAmerican77

Colorado

3.98/5  rDev -4.8%
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?

Serving type: bottle

10-10-2010 05:01:10 | More by JoeAmerican77
Photo of ArrogantB
ArrogantB

Colorado

3.05/5  rDev -27%
look: 4 | smell: 3 | taste: 3 | feel: 3 | overall: 3

750ml bottle $10. I have always passed up Val Dieu beers and for some reason this caught my eye. Maybe it was the black label? Anyway, this poured a very dark brown and looks like your typical Belgian quad. The smell was fruity and sweet, almost too sweet. The flavor was raisins and sweetness, cloying sweetness. This was not my favorite quad and now I may know better about buying Val Dieu beers.

Serving type: bottle

09-16-2010 00:22:10 | More by ArrogantB
Photo of rapidsequence
rapidsequence

Virginia

3.53/5  rDev -15.6%
look: 4.5 | smell: 4 | taste: 3 | feel: 4.5 | overall: 3.5

750 ml corked bottle. $8.50 from Pints O Plenty.

Appearance: A very dark, clear ruby color. Big, soft cottony looking head with infinite retention. Very nice lacing. Helluva good start.

Smell: Smells very sweet. Dark fruit and yeasty spiciness. A nice maltiness and a tiny, unexpected whiff of sourness.

Taste: Very, very sweet. Too sweet. Raisiny syrup flavor, some spice, a nice bready yeast finish. The alcohol is warming, but hardly tasted at all. Not all that complex, and just too damn sweet.

Mouthfeel: Well this part is really nice. Full in the mouth and very smooth. The carbonation gives an exceptional softness.

Drinkability: This is a pretty good beer, but not that great of a quad, especially for an actual Belgian. Its just too sweet and not multifaceted enough. It was enjoyable enough, but I won't buy it again.

Serving type: bottle

08-20-2010 01:28:16 | More by rapidsequence
Photo of Huhzubendah
Huhzubendah

District of Columbia

3.88/5  rDev -7.2%
look: 4.5 | smell: 4 | taste: 4 | feel: 3.5 | overall: 3.5

Shared a bottle with Rob earlier this summer. Review from notes.

Poured into two goblets from a 750mL bottle. This beer appears a cinnamon brown hue with a decent sized head and adequate lacing on the glass.

Belgian yeast aromas with sweet malts, figs, alcohol.

This beer is a little hotter and a sweeter than I would prefer. There are some nice notes of dark fruits soaked in alcohol and classic Belgian yeast strain flavors, but this is a step below the upper echelon of Belgian quads.

Serving type: bottle

08-02-2010 03:35:37 | More by Huhzubendah
Photo of Derek
Derek

British Columbia (Canada)

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.

Serving type: bottle

07-31-2010 20:36:07 | More by Derek
Photo of Halcyondays
Halcyondays

California

3.58/5  rDev -14.4%
look: 4 | smell: 3.5 | taste: 3.5 | feel: 4 | overall: 3.5

On-tap at Beachwood BBQ,

A: Pours a dark brown with a remarkably white head compared to the base beer. Some nice lace.

S: Brown sugar, raisins, dark candi sugar is prominent.

T: Has the classic dark candi sugar quad flavour but really nothing else. Some raisin and prune, but lacking complexity. Just going through the motions.

M: Medium-bodied, very smooth, light carbonation.

D: A solid quad, but the complexity and flavour was considerably better in the Brune which I had back in the day.

Serving type: on-tap

06-30-2010 23:50:38 | More by Halcyondays
Photo of 89Vision
89Vision

Virginia

3.63/5  rDev -13.2%
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.

Serving type: bottle

06-19-2010 02:06:38 | More by 89Vision
Photo of beertunes
beertunes

Washington

4.53/5  rDev +8.4%
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.

Serving type: on-tap

06-02-2010 19:29:12 | More by beertunes
Photo of weeare138
weeare138

Pennsylvania

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

Appears a copper toned amber with a small off white head that slowly fades after a decent retention. Scattered bits of lacing are left around the glass.
Smell is of ripe fruit, freshly baked bread, brown sugar, esters of bubble gum and spice.
Taste is of tropical fruit, plums, brown sugar, and raisin bread.
Mouthfeel is full bodied, smooth, well balanced, tasty, and lightly boozy

Serving type: bottle

05-26-2010 00:05:01 | More by weeare138
Photo of ekmoody
ekmoody

Wisconsin

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.

Serving type: on-tap

05-16-2010 14:01:12 | More by ekmoody
Photo of stbfan
stbfan

Alabama

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.

Serving type: bottle

05-03-2010 04:56:56 | More by stbfan
Photo of Mora2000
Mora2000

Texas

4/5  rDev -4.3%
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.

Serving type: bottle

03-17-2010 03:22:48 | More by Mora2000
Photo of fragilemacabre
fragilemacabre

New Jersey

3.93/5  rDev -6%
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)

Serving type: bottle

03-12-2010 08:16:38 | More by fragilemacabre
Photo of ommegangpbr
ommegangpbr

New York

3.35/5  rDev -19.9%
look: 3.5 | smell: 3 | taste: 3.5 | feel: 4 | overall: 3

I'm pretty sure I tried the Brune from this brewery but somehow neglected to review that one. I kinda recall liking it but don't recall specifics.
Pours a very, very dark cola color just shy of being opaque. Not very much head forms, the head that does is bright white.
Not a whole lot comes out on the nose but there is a sour scent that makes me a bit wary. A sourness that would be appropriate in a flanders red ale, in here, makes me think that something may have gone wrong.
Flavors are less worrying, if a bit one dimensional. Almost overtly sweet with dark sugar candy flavors. Molasses undertones with edges of port wine in there. Very fermented, overly ripe dark fruits, maybe a flash of fig?
Better warmer than colder, misses out on some balance for my taste. The 10.5% alcohol is, indeed, extremely sneaky and belly warming. Maybe serve with a dessert? A boozy fruit cake, maybe? Something in a rum cake? Rum raisin ice cream does come to mind when having this.
Worth a try, especially if you like the style. Probably worth a trying in a taste test next to something similar.

Serving type: bottle

03-12-2010 06:23:44 | More by ommegangpbr
Photo of OneDropSoup
OneDropSoup

Pennsylvania

4.68/5  rDev +12%
look: 4.5 | smell: 4.5 | taste: 5 | feel: 4 | overall: 4.5

On tap at 6 & Save in New Kensington, PA.

Poured into a goblet very dark, looked medium-bodied, with a thin dusting & ring of head. Ruby highlights. Full lacing, like the inside of the glass was coated in gauze.

Smells of dark, rich fruit: cherry, grape. Like a pudding.

Taste is fab! Rich, candied fruit, bready, spices like cinnamon & sugar. Under that is kind of a crispy, biscuity malt character reminiscent of an Oktoberfest, gives it a little backbone. Some caramel pops up. Wonderful.

The mouthfeel is full, kind of sticky sweet, to be expected.

This was delicious. Did not find the alcohol imposing, or even really noticeable. This is like a rich dessert: one is plenty, but you can't help yourself going back for another helping.

Serving type: on-tap

12-23-2009 12:17:49 | More by OneDropSoup
Photo of clayrock81
clayrock81

Virginia

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

Pours a dense black body that leaves a big head and lace ring down the entire glass. A mix of roasted, coffee, burnt chocolate, toffee, oak, maple...I'm picking up a lot of malts and hints of fruit. A thick bodied and stick beer that is a little dry, has a large portion of roasted and burnt malts with some sweetness from chocolate, vanilla and caramel (even licorice). Not quite sure but I know tasting something like maple or molasses along with a berry type fruit. Finish is dry and a tad bit of an alcohol burn. A quality quad that is meant to sip and enjoy for a very long time...it's just that heavy and like a meal in a bottle.

Serving type: bottle

09-26-2009 13:37:53 | More by clayrock81
Val-Dieu Grand Cru from Brasserie de l'Abbaye du Val-Dieu
93 out of 100 based on 248 ratings.