Péché Mortel | Brasserie Dieu du Ciel!

1,829 Reviews
Péché MortelPéché Mortel

Brewed by:
Brasserie Dieu du Ciel!
Quebec, Canada

Style: American Double / Imperial Stout

Alcohol by volume (ABV): 9.50%

Availability: Rotating

Notes / Commercial Description:
Péché Mortel (French for "Mortal Sin") is an intensely black and dense beer with very pronounced roasted flavours. Fair trade coffee is infused during the brewing process, intensifying the bitterness of the beer and giving it a powerful coffee taste. Péché mortel is brewed to be savored; we invite you to drink it in moderation.

This stout style, high in alcohol and bitterness in order to favour preservation, was historically brewed to support the long and arduous voyage necessary to export the beer from England to Russia. The word Imperial comes from the fact that the beer was specially brewed for the Russian tsar’s court.

Added by Popsinc on 06-09-2003

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Reviews: 1,829 | Ratings: 5,084
Photo of
1.92/5  rDev -56.3%
look: 2 | smell: 2.5 | taste: 2 | feel: 2 | overall: 1

Honestly i did not like this beer but to each his own, i bought it out of curiosity, i guess im just not a fan of the style or this was just a bad way to get into it

Appearance - pours like used motor oil

Smell - thick thick molasses and burnt coffee

Taste - pretty much the same as the taste, with an after taste of alchohol and coffee

Mouthfeel - THICK, like well molasses, taste stuck with me for awhile

Drinkability - one was enough for me

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Photo of Gmolleur
2/5  rDev -54.4%

Poured from a 341 ml bottle, 18 november 2014 at around 8 degree celsius.

I don't get all the good ratings for this beer. Maybe i fell on a bad one?
It surely smells like coffée and dark cocoa but, nothing more.

it taste the same as an average stout should taste, (cocoa, coffee) but is waaaayyy too much bitter. Where is the sweetness everyone talks about? bitter, bitter and bitter. I feel like eating a spoonful of cheap cocoa powder added with some poorly chosen hops. No fruit here.

The feeling is very thin in mouth, a little carbonation , no density here. The texture barely gets at the end of the tongue that it is dissipated, leaving nothing but a bitterly taste and the warmth of alcohol drying my tongue out.

I feel like i must buy this beer another time from another place, because I really don't understand all the overly positive critics about this beer. And I really enjoy the other types of beer from this brewery.

I'm sorry to leave such a nasty critic, but inconsistency is a bad thing for any company out there.

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Photo of bulletrain76
2.42/5  rDev -44.9%
look: 4 | smell: 2 | taste: 2.5 | feel: 3 | overall: 2

11.5oz bottle. Black with a medium tan head that settles to a sparse foam slick. Slightly burnt green vegetal coffee aroma. It's a bit harsh to start but after thirty minutes or so, it mellows into a simply sweet and stale coffee aroma. A bit sweet on the tongue, but with an over-roasted and vegetal coffee character, that ends on an alcoholic and slightly burnt bitterness. Syrupy but also a little thin. I don't get this one. tastes like they burnt the coffee beans and then let the coffee sit out overnight before adding it to the beer. Honestly hard to finish this one.

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Photo of jrallen34
2.44/5  rDev -44.4%
look: 3.5 | smell: 2 | taste: 2.5 | feel: 2.5 | overall: 2.5

I drank this from the bottle into a chalice while doing a tasting with dark lord, old rasputin 12, speedway stout, and dfh world wide stout. This was by far the least favorite of the grouping. Nothing special here at all.

It pours a medium dark black, still very dark in the light, light tan head, lacing ok.

The aroma is very strong, mostly of burnt wood and alcohol surprisingly don't get any coffee. The smell is pretty off putting, make you almost not want to drink it.

Taste is very light compared to the aroma, you think its just going to hit you in the mouth but it doesn't. You taste coffee from start to finish, that's it. Not very complex or compelling. Mouthfeel is bad, not very drinkable.

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Photo of niz
2.45/5  rDev -44.2%
look: 4.5 | smell: 4.5 | taste: 1.5 | feel: 3 | overall: 1

well after all the hype i had to give this one a try,

pours motor oil black with two finger tan head,

smells of alcohol and burnt espresso,

tastes the exact same, if i were to roast some espresso beans until they were charred all the way through, then threw them into a blender with ice and vodka, thats exactly how this tasted to me.

too boozy and too much espresso for me,

i understand what they were going for, and they hit the nail right on the head,

but for me, this is too over the top to enjoy,

couldn't finish it.

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Photo of johndoe8
2.65/5  rDev -39.6%
look: 4 | smell: 4 | taste: 2 | feel: 3.5 | overall: 1.5

Drinking this one with dinner.
March 2010 bottling. Served at around 50 degrees.

There is something I'm not really a big fan of with this beer. I love coffee porter and stouts, but this one just doesn't rub me the right way.

It has good mouthfeel, smells good, looks great... the taste is just an extremely bitter coffee flavor, almost like spent coffee grinds, and not in a good way. The balance is off with this beer... especially when compared to others in this category of coffee porter/stouts.

The balance in Speedway Stout (all 9 versions that I've tried), Alpine Token, or even MS Arctic Rhino make them much more palatable beers. This is just not my cup of tea.

Because of this, the heat is extremely apparent to my palate, and is not hidden well at all. I can sip this one, but that's about it. I'm not really enjoying it, although I could see how someone would like this.

Oh well.. based on previous reviews, it'd probably be heresy, but I'll probably drain pour the last 5oz of this beer and open up a Silva Stout or Stone IRS or something like that. I just don't like this one :(

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Photo of mullenite
2.8/5  rDev -36.2%
look: 4 | smell: 4 | taste: 2 | feel: 4 | overall: 2

Glassware - Over-sized brandy snifter.

Appearance - Pours a very dark black with some very dark red highlights. There isn't too much of a head to speak of, even after a very vigorous pour. There are some bubbles however, they are floating around the outside of the glass and are scattered through the top of the beer. Rolling the beer around the glass shows off some very nice legs and leaves some really nice lacing.

Nose - I could smell this beer across the room while setting up the pictures, it is strong. Lots of roasted barley notes, alcohol and really dark coffee. Very dark, strong coffee. This is a coffee stout for sure and a hard one to contend with in the nose.

Taste - Astringent bitterness coming from the coffee flavor with a strong, burnt coffee aftertaste. Very bitter and very aggressive. I think it's actually a bit too much for me. The alcohol, the malt, any semblance of flavor is completely annihilated by this burnt coffee flavor. This one is clearly not for me.

Mouthfeel - The body is on the heavier side of medium (or the lighter side of heavy... whichever) with really nice carbonation. The beer finishes a little sticky which I normally wouldn't mind but the flavor of this stickiness is burnt coffee.

Overall - This beer has a lot of potential, maybe this was a bad batch but I really could see myself enjoying this if it were more than one dimensional bitterness.

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Photo of Mavajo
2.85/5  rDev -35.1%
look: 3.5 | smell: 3.5 | taste: 2.5 | feel: 4 | overall: 2

Pours black with a thin brown head that fades rapidly, eventually disappearing entirely. No or minimal lacing. Aroma is sweet and malty, with coffee and chocolate...and smoky. Good enough. But then comes the taste - and that's where something went wrong. I don't know if it was my bottle or my palate, but the predominant taste at play was smoke. Just plain smoke. Maybe it could also be interpreted as charred or burnt. Either way, it was overwhelming. Behind that, there were notes of coffee and chocolate and maybe prunces, but compared to the burnt smokiness, they were downright subtle. Smokiest RIS I've ever had. It made it almost completely unpalatable. I'll have to try it again to see if there was some weird factor at play here, but I did not enjoy the taste.

It was like drinking burnt wood and charcoal in a burning house. Completely overpowering and smothering every other taste.

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Photo of Oxymoron
3.02/5  rDev -31.2%
look: 4.5 | smell: 2.5 | taste: 3 | feel: 3.5 | overall: 3

Don't forget the umlauts. Pours a rich black midnight color with a soft tan head and lacing. Moderate viscosity. Good head retention and lacing through out the tasting.

The nose is mostly coffee notes with some mild malt undertones. To start there is a thick coffee aroma with noticeable roast and earthy undertones. Not like a latte or espresso, but coffee straight up. Would have liked more of a malt characteristic has it is really lacking the depth. Noticeable yeast notes but figs and other tropical fruits. Some lighter esters, rose mostly, and a touch of alcohol.

The taste is bit more in tune but still over emphasizes the burnt coffee characteristics. A more rich coffee note again, but some roast and chocolate notes are a tad more detectable. The yeast/esters come out even more than the nose. Has a Belgian characteristic with some dry plums, fig notes and big rose notes. The alcohol is really noticeable and if more of a deterrent than anything.

The body is moderately full to full. Some creaminess texture and noticeable astringency in the malt. Overall even for a coffee beer this is really out of balance and way to yeast for a stout. IMHO this beer is over rated.

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Photo of jujubeast6000
3.03/5  rDev -31%
look: 4 | smell: 3.5 | taste: 3 | feel: 2.5 | overall: 2.5

Reviewed 9/12/2009 (bottle):

Pours an extremely dark brown color body, with a small tan brown head, diminishing. Strong aroma of coffee, espresso. All I get is the coffee. Very carbonated, strong coffee taste, biting. Might be the alcohol. Alcoholy aftertaste for sure. Roasted taste. A little too strong coffee and not much else for my liking.

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Photo of Vierenner
3.03/5  rDev -31%
look: 4 | smell: 3.5 | taste: 2.5 | feel: 3.5 | overall: 3

Placed on my want list because of expected sweetness and low bitterness. However, both of these qualities were not observed. It has good mouthfeel, smells good, looks great... the taste is just an extremely bitter coffee flavor, almost like spent coffee grinds. The balance is off with this beer... especially when compared to others in this category of coffee porter/stouts.

Too bad. Was so looking forward to discovering another favorite ...

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Photo of mdcrouser
3.06/5  rDev -30.3%
look: 4.5 | smell: 3.5 | taste: 2.5 | feel: 4.5 | overall: 2.5

Maybe the darkest of any of those enjoyed recently - absolutely no ruby or brown shows through the bottom of the pint. Tan head pocked by bubble bursts caps the top.

The nose is like coffee liquer - no lack of strength or alcohol here.

Deep coffee flavors dominate, leaving little room for anythin else, though a bit of dark chocolate is apparent. Unfortunately, heavy alcohol also comes through with the coffee and really detracts from the overall enjoyment here.

The mouthfeel is great, with restrained carbonation and smooth delivery.

While the majority feel this is a great beer, the alcohol is too heavy to enjoy the entire package.

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Photo of wheelinshirt
3.06/5  rDev -30.3%
look: 4.5 | smell: 3.5 | taste: 2.5 | feel: 3.5 | overall: 3

11.5 oz shoulder bottle from Vidalia in Lansdale (before it closed). Purchased for around $6. Split the bottle with a friend.

Pours a pretty sludgy looking black with a cocoa powder colored head that sported fairly good retention and some nice lacing. Good looking stout.

Smell was mostly burnt dark malts and alcohol. Not bad, but I think they forgot to put the coffee in mine.

No coffee taste either. Tasted like burnt malts, faint chocolate and booze. Not really much else going on. My friend didn't taste any coffee either.

Mouthfeel was fairly rich, viscous, medium low carbonation. A bit of a burn from the alcohol.

Drinkability is just average. Not exactly undrinkable but it certainly didn't make me want to drink another. This one really didn't live up to its reputation. I wish I had tried it when it was more fresh, but it has been in a fridge since I bought it. We were so disappointed that we had to make some coffee afterwards to make up for the disappointment. I have another bottle in my cellar and I am regretting shelling out the money for it. The Derniere and Route de Espice were much better. Maybe I can trade my second bottle to somebody that would enjoy it more.

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Photo of burnheartsMKE
3.08/5  rDev -29.8%
look: 4 | smell: 3.5 | taste: 2.5 | feel: 4 | overall: 3

I have been obsessed with finding the perfect moment to sit down and enjoy this beer. I figured a night on the couch with the love of my life and an expensive bar of chocolate is ideal in every other way, then so it shall be...

Immediately on the nose I get what reminds me of a carmel-mocha-frappacino-er-whatever. Tempting and perfectly paired with a vanilla bean & malted crumble bittersweet chocolate bar, or so I think...

First taste, BAM! Holy booze monster! It's actually overwhelming and as it warms, the nose too, becomes a booze-fest. I also get hints of bubblegum - Juicy Fruit, actually, and banana? Weird.

The mouthfeel is near perfect, creamy, modest carbonation, but that booze & bubblegum!?

So I begin to suspect that this might be an off bottle. Every review I have read about this beer sets it up to be my cup of tea, er coffee beer, actually. In fact, it has rave reviews AND I love this style, LOVE. But, try as I might, I get a little coffee flavor and a lot of booze. Too much. I sip slowly for about an hour then just give up with about 1/4 remaining.

Péché Mortel - it's a mortal sin I had to dump this expensive beer.

I will try this again. I want to believe it's as good as everyone says

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Photo of tdawgydog
3.1/5  rDev -29.4%
look: 3 | smell: 3 | taste: 3 | feel: 4 | overall: 3

Two quick caveats prior to my review of this beer. 1.) Not a huge fan of stouts, 2.) Really can't stand the taste of coffee. That being said I still had to give this a try as this is one of Dieu Du Ciel's most popular brews.

A - Pours a super thick brown, almost black. I was surprised that there was almost no hint of carbonation when I poured this out of the bottle.
S - The scent of the coffee beans is overpowering. Almost as if they are burnt. The scent of coffee is not unpleasing to me but this is almost too much. None the less I drank the entire bottle so that my review would be fair and balanced.
T - Not being a coffee drinker, I imagine that this is what a stout infused with Espresso (or some other extremely strong coffee) would taste like. I suppose if I was a fan of Coffee it would probably be a little better but this just doesn't do it for me.
D - Even with all my apprehensions I finished the bottle. They can't all be winners. The beer is clearly well made (as are all Dieu Du Ciel beers that I have tried)
M - Solid content to the beer, the lack of carbonation made it feel a little flat but it was still drinkable.

I stuck it out and gave it my best but I'm glad that I only purchased a single bottle. Not my cup of tea, but based on the scores here it apparently is enjoyed by most.

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Photo of MaltyGoodness
3.11/5  rDev -29.2%
look: 4 | smell: 3 | taste: 3 | feel: 3.5 | overall: 3

11.5 oz bottle

Pours a rich black color with a thick, creamy, brown head. Thick lacing on the glass.

Aroma is rather sharp and initially smells like burned coffee. Gives way to a large herbal hop smell and some lesser roasted malt and chocolate tones.

Huge bitterness upfront, both from the hops and coffee astringency. Lots of herbal hops and coffee and only a hint of the roated malts. Bitterness rages to the finish and well beyond.

Full body, mild carbonation.

I'm wondeirng why this beer is so well regarded. Extreme excess of both hops and coffee, no balance whatsoever.

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Photo of organicbrewer
3.15/5  rDev -28.2%
look: 5 | smell: 2.5 | taste: 3.5 | feel: 3.5 | overall: 2.5

A- Pitch black with a big tan head that falls down to one finger.

S-Coffee and a slight tar iness. Slight rubberyness. Not overly pleasant.

T- Coffee up front. Very burnt. Huge bitterness from the grains and hops. No hop flavor. Slight alcohol. Much less rubber than the smell.

M-Pretty thick. Slight alcohol tongue numbing. Despite the big head, not much in the way of prickly carbonation.

D-the body and alcohol would keep me from drinking too many of these. That rubber though... not sure what that is. Distracting.

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Photo of FtownThrowDown
3.18/5  rDev -27.6%
look: 3.5 | smell: 3 | taste: 3 | feel: 3.5 | overall: 3.5

Pours dark brown in color with a very pillowy inch of head. Smell is very roasty. A very burnt coffee grinds kind of smell. Taste is much the same.<BR>
I had the earlier release of this beer a few years back in a bomber and it tasted completely different than this. The earlier bottle had a luxurious, velvety, espresso flavor. This newer release has a burnt coffee flavor. Decent mouthfeel, but I have to think that there is something slightly off with this bottle.

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Photo of Kinsman
3.19/5  rDev -27.3%
look: 2 | smell: 3 | taste: 3.5 | feel: 2.5 | overall: 3.5

This beer poured absolutely pitch black with no chance of light permeating through. However, even with a relatively aggressive pour, it turned up almost no head. There was a brief appearance of a dark tan head, less than a centimeter thick, but quickly faded away, leaving a thin ring around the beer but no foam or lace.

Aroma was weak at first, but as it warmed the notes of espresso started to come out. There was a notable roasted character, but I really had to get close to find it. Not nearly as strong as I would have expected.

Coffee is obviously the dominant flavor, but its not over done. While this may be the coffee-est beer I've ever had, there is still room for flavors to come from the roasted barley. Overall, it's quite an enjoyable flavor, except for a not-so-pleasant bitterness in the finish. Its the kind of bitterness you get from burnt coffee, not just a dark roast, but a truly burnt cup of coffee.

Mouthfeel was smooth but rather thin with almost no sense of carbonation. I often find stouts to not have a lively carbonated feel, but this felt almost completely flat.

Drinkability was probably the highlight of this beer. Even though it looked and felt almost flat, the flavor was tasty enough that I could still drink it.

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Photo of biglite351
3.19/5  rDev -27.3%
look: 4.5 | smell: 3 | taste: 3.5 | feel: 3 | overall: 2.5

First off, thank you for the twist off cap. It males it much easier not needing an extra tool to drink my brew.

A - very dark with a tall tight tan head.

S - chocolate, roasted malts. Nice and complex, but a bitter level as well.

T - smoky chocolate coffee. Mild alcohol after taste.

M - solid coating. Tingling on the front of the tongue. Mild alcohol tingle on the back of the throat.

D - the flavor is good but the alcohol taste and burn would push it out of the all-night arena.

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Photo of jojox
3.21/5  rDev -26.9%
look: 4 | smell: 3 | taste: 3 | feel: 3.5 | overall: 3.5

a - very black. Light whispy tan head, quickly gone except the edges. It's a twist top bottle?!

s - JAVA! Wow, a bit like the air on the top of an esspresso. All the raspberry red fruit associated therewith. It's cold.

t - I think the water profile is a bit weird. A lot of Gypsum-like flavor?
I think it relys a bit too much on the coffee and not so much on the malt.
I think the coffee is too weak for coffee but too strong for beer.

m - Nice CO2

d - I could drink a lot, but I'm not really diggin it all that much.

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Photo of Dcunicelli
3.25/5  rDev -26%
look: 4 | smell: 4 | taste: 2.75 | feel: 3 | overall: 3.25

Just let me say that this beer is clearly well made. But am I missing something? The espresso flavor is so forward and overpowering that a bag of crushed coffe beans would have the same effect. Now, I know that people love to eat ground coffee beans on their chocolate, on their dessert and sometimes with hot pepper. But alone ground coffe flavor tastes like just that...coffee grounds. For me that was all I could taste. Iced coffee from Dunkin' is not what I want in a beer. Just not my thing.

But if you are one of those people that lives for coffee flavors outside of your morning coffee, this is your beer. It's like that time i accidentally doubled the beans in my morning brew, just cold and with a well hidden alcohol kick.

If that's your thing, have at it. I will save it all for you.

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Photo of azorie
3.26/5  rDev -25.7%
look: 4 | smell: 3 | taste: 3.5 | feel: 3 | overall: 3

A: Creamy Average head poured into mug at 45 degrees, and was 38F, letting it warm. good sticky lacing was light brown, body is black of course. well it looks like a coffee stout, LOL

s: one gets a heavy burnt coffee, and biter almond smell, as it warms you get the booze. if there are any hops they are overpowered by the coffee, its about all I can get really. in fact I get nothing else but some old burnt out Starbucks, coffee.

T: not as bad as the overpowering smell. Very heavy coffee, with some dark dark chocolate added in. I just cannot get much else. Smoke maybe. Very bitter. i usually love coffee stouts, this one not so much.

m: Heavy thick, gritty. bitter, slightly chalky, low carbonation

D: smooth, but not easy to drink

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Photo of samie85
3.26/5  rDev -25.7%
look: 5 | smell: 4 | taste: 3 | feel: 3 | overall: 2.5

Reviewed from notes; originally 6/14.

A-Pours oil slick black with two fingers of crater-like mocha head.

S-Smells of strong alcohol and coffee with some chocolate.

T-Huge coffee upfront with chocolate and deep roasted, bitter notes on the finish.

M-On the heavy side of medium bodied with medium carbonation and a drying, hot feel.

D-Not incredibly drinkable due to the very apparent hot alcohol notes.

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Photo of HappyHourHero
3.27/5  rDev -25.5%
look: 4 | smell: 4.5 | taste: 3 | feel: 3.5 | overall: 2

It's like pouring motor oil from a beer bottle. A bottle with a cool label I might add (artsy medusa lady on the front). Rich mocha aroma with lots of black malt in there as well. Short, dense, light brown head covers the beer. Rich, potent, bitter flavor. Lots of astringent dark malt, coffee grinds, and even some cocoa. Finishes with a bitter ashy flavor. The mouthfeel is crisp and faily light for such a strong beer. Not to be a whiner, but it's too damn bitter. It wasn't that cold, but I'm going to let it warm up and bit and see if it mellows because it's pretty harsh right now...

Ok, well it's almost an hour later and it has mellowed quite nicely. The flavors go together smoothly and don't bash your tongue. All except for that bitter/astringent flavor that still dominates and leaves an ashy aftertaste. Even without considering the price I think this will be my last Peche Mortel.

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Péché Mortel from Brasserie Dieu du Ciel!
4.39 out of 5 based on 5,084 ratings.
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