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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
92
outstanding

295 Ratings
THE BROS
-
no score

(send 'em beer!)
Ratings: 295
Reviews: 146
rAvg: 4.15
pDev: 11.81%
Wants: 47
Gots: 26 | 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: Ratings & Reviews
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Ratings: 295 | Reviews: 146
Photo of tavernjef
4.13/5  rDev -0.5%
look: 4 | smell: 3.5 | taste: 4.5 | feel: 4.5 | overall: 4

Dark purpley pour to settle a glazed black with a mediumish sized light sandy tanned whitened cap that slips away quickly to a hazey skim and good collaring. Lots of lacing in a solid coating sticks tightly in a wave of tiny holed sheeting acroos the snifter.

Aroma is soft and dullish of dark fruity sugars and purple grape juice, the dark malty fruityness begins to add up more as it warms as does some vanilla cola sweetness and a tiny hint to yeasty spice and black licorice. Nice, but I had to really stick my nose in it to get into it.

Taste is firm and soft with an alluring gradual pull into a sweet, dark, sugary pile of fruity pie filling. Purple grape emerges the winner at first taste with a smooth rounded tone of malty gooeyness that slips right into a melange of warming dark jellies and pastry fillings. Flavors and tones are quite acceptable in the realm of sweet dark malts, caramel, and light fruit tones, semi bready and sugary with vanilla, plum, fig, cherry, and grape. Lingers lightly for a bit and kinda cuts off before rebuilding a memory of lasting lengthy malt laden chewyness and slickness across the palate as it finishes with a crescendo of the warmth.

Body is firm, soothing, and just beyond medium with a thick lasting malty smooth reaction of boldness and chewyness. Has a late reacting finish which really grows on ya. Has quite the memory take back on the palate. A unique characteristic not found very often and which I found to be intriguing and fulfullingly fun and interesting. Warmth emerges even later with a hint of heat touching the back. The malts however stay the stage no matter the scene.

A pretty decent Belgian Quad here. Val-Dieu's Grand Cru is by far one of the better, top notch brews to be produced by them and worth giving a try. The unique effect of body from start to never ending finish in flavor and tone is the best part(heart) of the whole beer and the main reason to seek it out.

Photo of augustgarage
4.15/5  rDev 0%
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).

Photo of wethorseblanket
4.15/5  rDev 0%
look: 4 | smell: 4 | taste: 4.25 | feel: 4 | overall: 4.25

Photo of Yesac
4.15/5  rDev 0%
look: 4 | smell: 4 | taste: 4 | feel: 4.5 | overall: 4.5

A - Appears solid black in the glass. The head is extremely foamy and a pain to manage. The foam is sloppy and sticks to the glass unevenly.

S - caramel, roasted nuts, fruity accents, some tartness.

T - Pretty complex. Sweet fuits.. and a yeasty finish. It's watery-light overall which I'm not keen of. Smooth drinking.

M - Highly carbonated.. bubbles dancing across the tongue. Alcohol warming effect.

D - So smooth, thin and complex. The 10.5% is extremely well hidden.

Photo of JoBoTo
4.15/5  rDev 0%
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.

Photo of tobelerone
4.15/5  rDev 0%

Photo of siradmiralnelson
4.15/5  rDev 0%
look: 4.5 | smell: 4.5 | taste: 4 | feel: 4 | overall: 4

Poured from 750ml corked and caged into Westvleteren chalice.

A. Pours 2 finger head. Thick lacing. Really good retention. Color is very dark brown.

S. Caramel, dark fruit, oaky earthiness, belgian yeast. Smells like it is a dryer quad. Gets a little bit sweeter smelling as it warms. Brings out some candi sugar. Also get a bit of creamy spice as the beer warms. Interesting depth of aroma.

T. Drinks pretty dry too. Very interesting. Lots of caramel malt. So much caramel malt flavor it almost pulls the beers flavor away from being called a quad. Get belgian yeast, and a bit of spice on the back of the tongue. Not very sweet.

M. Medium/full bodied. Medium carbonation. Finishes pretty dry.

O. Really good beer. Great aroma. Flavor is not on par with the very best quads. Just not the traditional Belgian flavor of the very top Quads. Has a lot more caramel flavor, and lacks some of the sweetness. Never the less, this is a really good beer.

Photo of Soneast
4.16/5  rDev +0.2%
look: 5 | smell: 4 | taste: 4 | feel: 5 | overall: 4

On tap at Brasserie V in Madison, served in a Val-Dieu chalice. Pours a brown color with some copper tones. The light brown head is thick and pillowy and hangs on for the entire ride. I had to drink through suds right down to the very last sip. Great retention! Lace....Talk about lace! This more or less pulled a sheet of bubbles down the entire glass as I drank.

The aroma reminded me of black cherry so definitely some dark fruits on the nose as well as a well defined sweet malt and some brown sugar-ish/toasted caramel presence with little to no alcohol detected.

The flavor is quite complex, although predominated by the dark fruit character with black cherries being the dominant fruit I'd associate it with, as well as an underlying raisin, some brown sugar flavors, a mild chocolate presence throughout, and just a hint of hop spiciness towards the end to round out the flavor profile.

I was thoroughly impressed with this beer. Just silky smooth, leaving a delectable presence on the palate. Quite an easy drinker too, although it would probably be best to keep this to one or two glasses. Those Belgian Strong Dark Ales and Quads never cease to amaze me with their ability to pack an amazing flavor-punch, yet retain a low alcohol presence, despite the high ABV.

Photo of joepais
4.17/5  rDev +0.5%
look: 3.5 | smell: 4 | taste: 4.5 | feel: 4 | overall: 4

Bottle with a 02/10 date poured into a Chalice produced a good two fingers worth of off white to tan bubbly head that goes to a thick lace. The body is a dark burgandy color on this brew.

Aromas of dark fruits, raisins and plumbs along with a whiff of yeast

Great flavors of fruit, candy, spice and bready yeast filled my mouth. Full creamy mouthfeel nice carbonation on the tongue as well.

Great drinkability on this, a little high in the alcohol department to drink too many of these in one sitting. I guess though it depends how the night goes.

Photo of metter98
4.18/5  rDev +0.7%
look: 4 | smell: 4 | taste: 4.25 | feel: 4.25 | overall: 4.25

A: The beer is slightly hazy brownish amber in color. It poured with a finger high off white head that gradually died down, consistently leaving a thin layer of bubbles covering the surface.
S: Moderate aromas of dark fruits are present in the nose - plums seem to stand out in particular.
T: Like the smell, the taste has lots of flavors of dark fruits along with a moderate amount of sweetness.
M: It feels medium-bodied and a bit smooth on the palate with a moderate amount of carbonation.
O: While you can tell that this is a strong beer from the sweetness, it hides its alcohol very well from the taste. This is exactly how I like my quads - with lots of fruits and a good amount of sweetness.

Photo of liamt07
4.18/5  rDev +0.7%
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.

Photo of JayQue
4.18/5  rDev +0.7%
look: 4 | smell: 4 | taste: 4.25 | feel: 4.25 | overall: 4.25

Good Quad!! Pours a hazy mahogany brown color into my Chimay goblet. Very little light comes through at the base of the glass. Fairly big off-white head ( good for this abv level) with better than average retention. Plenty of filmy lacing on the glass. Strong aroma of dark fruit (raisins, plums and some cherry), malt and some Belgian yeast and candi sugar.

Flavor is more of the same with the dark fruit and malt most dominant with the yeast and sweetness taking a less prominent role. Very flavorful, not a whole lot of spices but the flavor is strong and very appealing.

Mouthfeel is rich and smooth with a little alcohol presence, warming with just a little bite. The sweetness is just right.

Just a step below my favorites, such as St Bernadus abt 12 and Westvleteren. Relly good Quad.

Mouthfeel

Photo of sweetbrew82
4.22/5  rDev +1.7%
look: 3.5 | smell: 4 | taste: 4.5 | feel: 4.5 | overall: 4

750 ML bottle/ best before 03/09 (date consumed)

P: Sits very dark brown in the glass with the only light coming through the edges. The 1 finger, off-white head is soapy with small bubbles. Showed decent retention before settling to a thick cap of foam, while leaving intricate webs of lace.

A: Lots of dark fruits that aim to please! Grapes, raisins, and figs on top, with some nutty maltiness and brown sugar underneath. The alcohol smells vinous to me.

T: Silky smooth malt bill holds the palate's attention with a deeply toasted/ slightly roasted flavor that brings life to chocolate and tree nuts. Its slick & oily, mouth-coating richness is the star of the show. As for the fruit, the grapes and raisins are probably the most pronounced, with figs underneath. Hops lay low, but do deliver some earthy flavors and a spicy stab that works great with the brown sugar complimenting. The alcohol is very soft & mellow. Its non-abrasive, non-intrusive nature never overwhelms, but does warm the chest nicely. This is fantastic!

M: This Grand Cru is full-bodied, slick & oily, rich & luxurious. It's ridiculously smooth while feeling a bit chewy as it warms.

Notes: This is a fantastic Belgian Ale that is almost like a Belgian Stout! Good complexity, intriguing depth, great flavors, and good drinkability. I'm going to go snag the last bottle off the shelves the next chance I get. Now, if I could just get my hands on the rest of the Val-Dieu lineup...

Photo of micalj
4.23/5  rDev +1.9%
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.

Photo of Wowcoolman
4.23/5  rDev +1.9%
look: 4.5 | smell: 4 | taste: 4.5 | feel: 4 | overall: 4

I thank Hop-head Mike for making sure I've had this both on-tap and from the bottle. Either way try to check this one out.
There's a noticeable jump in character from the Val-Dieu Triple. It's bigger, darker, and sweeter. The sweetness is a fundamental driving character here- we get notes of caramel and brown sugar and some dried fruit backed by the malt. This is pure Candyland for adults, with the alcohol subtly enhancing the mix, but not overpowering.
There are quads out there that have more complexity and bigger flavor profiles. Compared to some of those, this one may not be the greatest beer on the planet. Let those ones stand as a main course. This ones for dessert.

Photo of biboergosum
4.24/5  rDev +2.2%
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.

Photo of tylermains
4.25/5  rDev +2.4%

Photo of drummerguy
4.25/5  rDev +2.4%

Photo of HaveUSeenMyCellar
4.25/5  rDev +2.4%

Photo of jaydoc
4.25/5  rDev +2.4%

Photo of wedge
4.25/5  rDev +2.4%
look: 4.5 | smell: 4.5 | taste: 4 | feel: 4 | overall: 4.5

@ Woody's

Served in a Val-Dieu chalice, which was a nice surprise. Very dark brown, nearly black in the dim lighting with an attractive silky beige covering on top. Sweet raisin aromas dominate upfront, opening up to reveal strawberry, cherry, caramel, chocolate, banana, and vanilla...very nice. Somewhat less fruity flavor, though the raisin continues along with plum, fig, and caramel malt. No booze at all. Medium-full bodied with very light carbonation making it satisfyingly smooth. I really liked this one...

Photo of Hopheadjeffery
4.25/5  rDev +2.4%

Photo of Kerne
4.25/5  rDev +2.4%

Photo of AnitaBrewski
4.25/5  rDev +2.4%

Photo of wattershed
4.25/5  rDev +2.4%

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Val-Dieu Grand Cru from Brasserie de l'Abbaye du Val-Dieu
92 out of 100 based on 295 ratings.