Péché Mortel | Brasserie Dieu du Ciel!

1,818 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: 1,818 | Ratings: 5,045
Photo of Bung
4.2/5  rDev -4.3%
look: 4 | smell: 4 | taste: 4.5 | feel: 4 | overall: 4

Black pour, not even much light getting through arount the edges. Small dark brown head. Very nice roast coffee and roast malt aromas. Med/full bodied with a descent amount of small carbonation, not quite creamy. Coffee, coffee and some mocha or bakers chocolate, coffee bitters in the finish. A little bitey, but mellows nicely as it warms. No messin around, very good straigh forward, yet slightly different than the norm Imperial. More of a good java stout than a straight Imperial. Not quite a good as the Bell's or Southern Tier I've had. Still worth finding however.

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Photo of midaszero
4.5/5  rDev +2.5%
look: 4.5 | smell: 4.5 | taste: 4.5 | feel: 4.5 | overall: 4.5

A - Opaque black with one finger of coffee colored head and some pretty good lacing as well

S - Rich roasted coffee.

T - Nice rich roasted coffee with solid chocolate component. Some coffee/chocolate bitterness to be found. Nice crisp taste. Alcohol is extremely well hidden for 9.5 ABV

M - Thick body with medium carbonation. Creamy texture that coats your mouth

D - Extremely enjoyable and easy to drink. Probably one of my favorite coffee stouts I have had thus far.

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Photo of DoctorDog
4.01/5  rDev -8.7%
look: 4.5 | smell: 3.5 | taste: 4 | feel: 4 | overall: 4.5

Presentation: 11.5 oz bottle into a snifter.

A- Very deep mahogany, and completely opaque. Sturdy pour yields ~1 1/2 fingers of brown head, which settles slowly fades into a thin, incomplete cap.

S- Earthy, burned, alcohol infused coffee. Try as I might, I am unable to cull anything beyond this for description.

T- Sweet crispness on the front, with a bit of raisin/fig/cherry cordial. This sweetness seems to increase slightly as the drink warms. Finishes with a nice, bitter coffee/espresso taste. Alcohol heat on the back of the back of the tongue/ throat is distinct at the first drink, though not overwhelming, and decreases quite perceptibly throughout consumption.

M- Surprisingly crisp on the front of my tongue, with moderate/low carbonation. Finishes very creamy and smooth. Slight numbing effect on front/middle of tongue noted towards the end of my serving.

D- A nice slow sipper, though smooth and easy drinking enough for it's 9.5 % ABV to go down a bit quicker than you might wish....

Future outlook: I'm sure we'll meet again in a snifter someday down the road

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Photo of HopHead84
4.21/5  rDev -4.1%
look: 5 | smell: 4 | taste: 4.5 | feel: 4.5 | overall: 3.5

Poured into my Lost Abbey tulip. Péché Mortel is black with a two finger, light brown head. The head lingers for 5 minutes, and thick lacing is all over the glass.

The aroma is dominated by coffee. I'm having a hard time detecting much else. Some roasted malt and bitter chocolate.

Taste is of bitter coffee. Tastes like a cold iced coffee with very understated alcohol flavor. Surprisingly bitter. The finish is long and bitter with a slight sweetness to it.

Full bodied with a creamy mouthfeel. Carbonation is very good. I can't fault a beer for tasting like coffee when that's what was intended, but I've never been a big fan of coffee dominated imperial stouts. This seems more like coffee than like beer. I can definitely dig it and appreciate it for what it is though.

That being said, I just realized it's getting late and that this beer probably has a lot of caffeine so I don't think I'll be finishing it. Damn...why did I open a coffee stout so late.

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Photo of prsguitarsr4me
5/5  rDev +13.9%
look: 5 | smell: 5 | taste: 5 | feel: 5 | overall: 5

Great beer. Beautiful black with a creamy chocolaty head. The aroma and taste are full of sweet coffee - really nice blend with the other ingredients. Alcohol is hidden perfectly. This was more carbonated than most really good stouts I've had, but it was still really full-bodied. Straight 5s for me - one of the few best stouts I've ever had.

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Photo of jpiper
4.35/5  rDev -0.9%
look: 4 | smell: 4 | taste: 4.5 | feel: 4.5 | overall: 4.5

Pitch black pour at exactly 55 dgrees. in a 14oz snifter, all space above the beer is filled by a dark tan head which sticks to the glass as it dissipates.

Coffee smell fills the air. Tough to identify much more than coffee on the nose, but in its defense, I am a touch stuffy. There's a little sweet malt.

First sip - coffee everywhere. This is the most coffee flavored beer I think I've ever had. That's good, but I've got to say, it's just a bit much. There's a nice bitterness - from hops or from the coffee? There's a little heat, but the alcohol is well hidden under the flavor. There's definitely some complexity here, a little nuttiness: walnuts. There's definitely some bitter chocolate as well.

The mouthfeel is smooth, but not very thick.

If you're a coffeehead, I imagine you could drink this one forever. I like coffee - good coffee - but I don't drink it very often.

I wish there was more complexity to this one. If speedway stout didn't come in 750's, I'd pour one to compare head to head, but I appreciate the complexity of the SS over this one. The bitterness, nuttiness, chocolate are all nice, but I have a hard time thinking I'm drinking anything other than an alcoholic cup of joe here. That said, SS is one of my favorite beers - and this one is *very* good.

Most people say not to age this one (coffee flavor will weaken) - but I think I may put 1 or 2 aside and see what I think in a year or two. I'd like to see the coffee die down just a bit and some malts come forward for some additional complexity. Fortunately, I was able to pick up a 6-pack.

This is a great one, but my expectations were high - and not quite met.

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Photo of Yesac
3.8/5  rDev -13.4%
look: 4 | smell: 4 | taste: 3.5 | feel: 4 | overall: 4

A - Pours jet black, small brown head.

S - Strong java aroma hits me before I even get my nose near the glass. As I move in for a closer smell, that is all I can pick up is a very strong java coffee bean aroma and a tiny hint of chocolate malt.

T - Along with the smell, a strong java taste and a slight hint of chocolate malts. The 9.5% is very well hidden. For all of the coffee stouts I've had, this one is strong on the java presence which I'm not a huge fan of.

M - Medium carbonation keeps away that sticky palate.

D - Nice sipper here on a warm night, for coffee lovers.

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Photo of shamus
4.56/5  rDev +3.9%
look: 3.5 | smell: 5 | taste: 4.5 | feel: 4.5 | overall: 4.5

Pours a deep dark brown with brass highlights, a tan head and delicate lace. The smell is like chocolate and fresh ground coffee beans.what a great taste. Different than any stout I've had. A very complex rush of flavours washes over the palette. I'm not too good at describing these things but it's all roasted malt and dark chocolate with a soft bitter slightly burnt after taste. The alcohol definitely is there but doesn't overpower. A perfect beer for coming in out of the snow and sitting in front of the fireplace. Mmmmm.

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Photo of bobbyc881
4.7/5  rDev +7.1%
look: 5 | smell: 5 | taste: 4.5 | feel: 5 | overall: 4.5

Pours out black as hell. Dark tan head that hangs around forever. Smell is rich, dark roast coffee. Really exceptional.

Taste is bold and creamy. Rich dark roast malts combine with distinct coffee flavors. Some bittersweet chocolate as well. Semi-sweet up front with a somewhat dry finish. Slight alcohol in the finish, too.

Mouthfeel is insanely creamy and chewy. Perfect match to the flavors. A nearly 10% ABV beer should not drink this easy. Incredibly smooth.

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Photo of lessthanhadley
4.65/5  rDev +5.9%
look: 4 | smell: 4 | taste: 5 | feel: 4.5 | overall: 5

Thanks to rsyberg01 for this one via a LIF.

A: Dark brown/black with long lasting brown head
S: Roasted coffee, chocolate
T: Coffee and dark chocolate
M: Creamy, low to moderate carbonation
D: Highly drinkable, one of the better examples of the style that I have seen.

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Photo of beveritt
4.52/5  rDev +3%
look: 4 | smell: 4.5 | taste: 4.5 | feel: 5 | overall: 4.5

Presentation: Poured from a 11.5 oz brown bottle into a large snifter. Label depicts A lady with snakes either wrapped around her head or possibly as hair? Medusa? Can't tell. No freshness date, but not too sure that matters. A twist off top, which I found interesting on a beer many people (myself included) are going to age.

Appearance: Pours with 1 1/2 fingers of almost brown head. This settles to a thin coating of foam with an island in the center. Decent lacing. The beer itself is absolutely opaque and seems to absorb light like a black hole. Looks to be more brown than black. A thick layer of well compacted sediment in the bottle.

Smell: Extremely strong smell in general, I can smell it well before I get my nose down to the glass. Notes of licorice, anise, chocolate, and bitter coffee all wrapped up with strong alcohol sweetness. This just smells like it is going to kick your ass.

Taste: Decent carbonation bite helps to deliver the flavor and prevent the cloying feeling so often present in big beers. An immediate slightly sweet chocolate malt flavor on the front of your tongue. Middle flavors of raisins and figs with a fairly mild roastiness. Finishes with a definite kick from the high ABV and warms you quickly. Slight hints of vanilla and cherries in the finish.

Mouthfeel: Average carbonation level, just right to cut through the bold flavors. Body is incredibly good, thick and viscous.

Drinkability: A big, bold, impressive beer that is meant to be sipped and savored. Well blended, with great body and a nice balancing carbonation. I look forward to slowly pulling these out of the cellar.

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Photo of Clubchat
4.12/5  rDev -6.2%
look: 3.5 | smell: 4 | taste: 4.5 | feel: 3.5 | overall: 4

Pours a deeper black color in the glass, with a brown and creamy head.
Nice coffee, nutty, light fruity smell.
Notes of coffee, roastiness, wood, chocolate taste and expresso in finish.
Thick and creamy with a nice finish.
Easy drinking. Very complex and equilibrated beer. What I habitually look in a good imperial stout. Cheers

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Photo of Cresant
4.33/5  rDev -1.4%
look: 5 | smell: 4.5 | taste: 4 | feel: 4.5 | overall: 4.5

Poured this 11.5 oz brown bottle into a Duvel glass. Difficult to discern but maybe notched 0 0? Created a very tall head which eventually faded to a lumpy film. The head was chocolate milkshake brown and the body was glossy jet black. Served about 50 degrees F. Happened to be listening to Arcade Fire (Canadian band) while drinking this Canadian beer on a cold night in Kentucky.

Smell was roasty, acrid, and chocolaty malts. Steel. Cocoa powder and fresh brewed coffee grounds.

Taste reflected the aromas very well. Espresso beans. Some sweetness from the rich malts. There was a lingering dark chocolate and coffee bitterness that was never cloying.

Mouthfeel was a bit numbing. Zing on the tongue from carbonation. Alcohol was well hidden.

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Photo of KarlHungus
4.75/5  rDev +8.2%
look: 5 | smell: 5 | taste: 4.5 | feel: 4.5 | overall: 5

Thanks to Greggy for this one. This beer pours a thick motor oil black color. The head is large, dark tan, and never really recedes. The aroma is of graham cracker, dark chocolate, roasted malt, coffee, nuts, and hints of cherry. The taste is full of dark chocolate, coffee, graham cracker, and nuts. The finish is a nice lingering roasted malt bitterness. It is a lot like the aroma, but not quite as nuanced. The mouthfeel is wonderfully chewy with a silky texture, and low carbonation. Overall, this is one beautiful beer. I really appreciate how balanced this is for an Imperial Stout. I like how all of the gorgeous malt flavors are allowed to express themselves without tons of hops getting in the way. I would love to have this available in my area.

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Photo of corby112
4.15/5  rDev -5.5%
look: 4.5 | smell: 4.5 | taste: 4 | feel: 4 | overall: 4

Pours a sludgy deep dark black with thin coffee colored head. Aroma is dominated by strong roasted coffee. Chocolate, toffee, roasted malt and alcohol also present. Very strong roasted coffee flavor with hints of chocolate, toffee, burnt bread and a nice alcohol warmth in the finish.

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Photo of Greggy
4.5/5  rDev +2.5%
look: 4.5 | smell: 4.5 | taste: 4.5 | feel: 4.5 | overall: 4.5

A- Pours a black color, not overly thick, with nice brown head and lacing.

S- Nice caramel, coffee, toffee, nutty, cherry, graham cracker.

T- Notes of coffee, roastiness, chocolate, cherry, oak, vanilla, mainly dry coffee notes of the finish

M- Thick and creamy with a nice finish.

D- Nice and easy drinking delicious Impy. The ABV is well hidden making it quite drinkable. Will plan on having again. Big thanks to JoeyBeerBelly for the tade.

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Photo of coalcracker
4.25/5  rDev -3.2%
look: 4 | smell: 4 | taste: 4.5 | feel: 4.5 | overall: 4

Appearance: Pours near-opaque with brown frothy head. Some lacing noted.
Smell: Smells deeply of dark fruits, a little coffee in there as well. A little reminiscent of Aventinus.
Taste: Here's where the Aventinus comparison ends. Traditional stout flavors present first, with deep roasted malts and balancing hops. The coffee pulls midway trough the tasting. Some cocoa also noted. The coffee bitterness is well-controlled and is a little less dominant (eg- KBS). Alcohol presence is there, but is not 'boozy'.
Mouthfeel: Creamy and thick, clean at the finish.
Drinakbility: I'm not a big coffee guy, but this brew can convert me. Not at all overpowering- adds to the drinakbility. A sipper nonetheless due to its complexity and ABV.

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Photo of markaberrant
4.08/5  rDev -7.1%
look: 4.5 | smell: 4 | taste: 4 | feel: 4.5 | overall: 4

A - opaque black, frothy dark tan head with good retention, and excellent lacing.

S - deep dark coffee, with an underlying layer of dark chocolate and dry almonds

T - sweet toffee and dark fruit malt upfront, alchol and roasted malts linger long into a soothing finish. Not a huge coffee presence in the taste, but it is there. No hop flavour.

M - big chewy mouthfeel, oily, smooth alcohol warmth

D - this is a very good imperial stout, with an added dimension of coffee

Is this the best imperial stout I've ever tasted? No. But it's definitely the best one in Canada. Not much to complain about, although it does seem a little too sweet at times, and I think I could handle a bigger roasted flavour. This is minor quibbling though, it really is a fine beer.

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Photo of beckje01
3.6/5  rDev -18%
look: 4 | smell: 4 | taste: 3.5 | feel: 3 | overall: 3.5

A- Carmel head black look nice lacing.

S- Wonderful bitter coffee nose with some other maltiness in the background

T- Good bitter coffee flavor with nice malt sweetness to balance out the coffee flavor.

M- Good thickness but no activity a touch of activity would have been nice.

D- Its a sipper but good.

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Photo of JohnGalt1
4.34/5  rDev -1.1%
look: 3 | smell: 4 | taste: 5 | feel: 4 | overall: 4

12 oz received as a very thoughtful extra from Rhino00... thanks Alex! Poured into my Chimay goblet..

1" head dies back very fast.. no lacing.. but a descent film/cap.

Initial aroma is coffee and little else.. cold brewed java.. some significant vanilla as it warms.. with a milk chocolate...

Flavor is no where near as sweet as the nose lets on.. big coffee .. some chocolate.. reminds alot me of chocolate coated coffee beans.. more of a carbonated rich French Roast than beer with a shot or two of Starbucks liquor.. wow.. I am even sure what to say as it hits room temperature.. more coffee than beer... I am struggling to pick out beer flavors.. I like great coffee (and obviously beer)... and this is far and away the best of both worlds. there is just enough sweetness to make sure the flavors mesh well... the brown sugar flavors emerge alot more as it hits room temperature.. finish is loooong cold brewed coffee. it's the beans without too much astringency.. I've had many .. many... many crappy cups of coffee with less flavor... really this is pretty badass.

Body is like a fairly thick milk stout.. but for this ABV.... I am very impressed.. lite for the style and a sorta prickly carbonation..

I must again thank Alex.. this is my first time for the Péché Mortel and I am very very impressed.. I would not ever think for a second that this would age well.. there is just too much going on... very nice.


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Photo of almychristopher
4.75/5  rDev +8.2%
look: 4.5 | smell: 4.5 | taste: 5 | feel: 4 | overall: 5

this beer pours a really beautiful black with a thick rocky head that fades slowly to a variegated spotty lacing that clings to the side of the glass. the aroma presents a wallop of coffee and roasted earthiness that is even more evident on the tongue. sweet at the beginning and bitter at the end. kind of like the sour patch but the other way around. the mouthfeel seems a bit on the under carbonated side, but otherwise nice, full and warming. thanks for the great beer wes.

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Photo of wkcyr4
4.85/5  rDev +10.5%
look: 4.5 | smell: 4.5 | taste: 5 | feel: 5 | overall: 5

Poured from the bottle into a Goose Island Tasting Glass. This beauty is black and beautiful!! Coffee aroma hits your nose upon pouring. Has a small brown head that dissappears quickly. Burnt coffee and malt dominate this beer. Leaves behind mininal lacing. Mouthfeel is appealing and full. Where is the alcohol in here, very well hidden. I have been holding on to this one for about a year now and have another cellaring. This is a top flight Imperial Coffee Stout for sure. Can't wait to taste it with more aging. Highly recommended for coffee junkies!!

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Photo of Metalmonk
4.45/5  rDev +1.4%
look: 4 | smell: 4 | taste: 5 | feel: 3.5 | overall: 4.5

Had the luxury of this one on tap over the summer at Eulogy in Philly, and it was very impressive. Profuse thanks to tpd975 for giving me the chance to savor it again.

So far so good, as it looks quite nice in the snifter. Poured out like oil. Utterly dark as hell, yet somehow not what I would call black...almost like the darkest shade of brown naturally possible. The head is thin, but what's there is light brown and it dissolves to a crown quickly. Brown splotches of lace look like candle-wax drippings.

Nothing but roast in the nose. You better dig coffee if you come near this. It's almost hard to glean anything else from it other than the mighty roasted bean. A light layer of frothed cream ekes through, but ultimately it's all about the coffee.

Flavor is enormous. That's not to say it's complex, but it's highly unique. In fact, when I would think of it over the past few months, after my first and only meeting, I could always recall the flavor. And here it is. It's bitter, like coffee--not like hops; it has a bite, like a killer dark roast; it thrusts itself forward and screams "coffee!!!" And like a good cup, it's got balance. I hope I'm not imagining this, but Dieu Du Ciel even remembered the sugar and cream--nice lactic tones and a hint of sweetness. Black licorice appears with warming. And wouldn't you know, there's some coffee in the finish...

The mouth is just a little too tingly and a little too thin for what's going on here. In some way the carbonation matches the intensity of flavor, but thicker and creamier would've really done the trick. Then again, if they were really trying to go for a true coffee stout, the watery element kind of works. I could grow to like the texture in this case, but ultimately I think big stouts should also be as smooth and creamy as possible (see: Bell's Expedition Stout, standard bearer of all stout greatness).

I find this comparable to Founder's Breakfast Stout in terms of a stout you actually could enjoy for breakfast. Otherwise it reminds a Southern Tier's Jah-va in terms of flavor. In the end, Peche Mortel is its own intriguing beer. As for the 9.5% alcohol, I have no idea where it's at, which increases drinkability to a dangerous degree. But this stuff is pretty pricey, so it probably won't be replacing the morning cup of joe anytime soon. If I could find this in our area, I'd buy on sight again with no hesitation.

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Photo of Reagan1984
4.23/5  rDev -3.6%
look: 4.5 | smell: 4 | taste: 4.5 | feel: 4 | overall: 4

Enjoyed this brew in one of my tulip shaped glasses. The head rose well above the beer and was dark tan in color almost brown. Creamy with some decent retention, once it started to recede then lacing was left all over the inside of the glass.

Aroma is of espresso, slight alcohol.

Smokey, roasted, creamy, espresso. Really an amazing beer. I've certainly fallen in love with Imperial Stouts. This is a great one.

Mouth feel is creamy and thick. Almost milkshake like. Warming effect due to the 9.5% abv

Drinkability is amazing and certainly one to savor.

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Photo of champ103
4.68/5  rDev +6.6%
look: 5 | smell: 4.5 | taste: 4.5 | feel: 5 | overall: 5

A big thanks to RblWthACoz for the trade, and to Deuane for the generous extra.

A: Pours pitch black. Blacker than I have ever seen in a beer. A large tan head forms with great retention (very impressive considering this has such a high alcohol content) and stays as a ring when it finally does recede. Some spiderweb lace is left along the glass.
S: A huge aroma of coffee/espresso. Roasted malt is dominate. Some chocolate, vanilla, and rum like alcohol.
T: Follows the nose. Lots of roasted malt, coffee and espresso flavors. Some bitter chocolate flavors. Just a huge malt profile that is to die for.
M/D: A full and rich body that is a bit chalky. Creamy and exceptional. This is so smooth and easy to drink. I usually find that coffee beers are a bit harder to drink. This is just incredibly rich and inviting. I can't get enough.

Without a doubt the best coffee stout I have ever had. Well worth the hype. In the words of Homer Simpson "You would step over your on Mother just to get one."

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Péché Mortel from Brasserie Dieu du Ciel!
4.39 out of 5 based on 5,045 ratings.
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