Péché Mortel | Brasserie Dieu du Ciel!

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Péché MortelPéché Mortel
5,206 Ratings
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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Ratings: 5,206 |  Reviews: 1,856
Photo of Viggo
4.62/5  rDev +4.8%
look: 4.5 | smell: 5 | taste: 4.5 | feel: 4.5 | overall: 4.5

On cask at Volo Cask Days 2006. Thanks to Dieu du Ciel guys for making the trek out and bring great beer to Toronto.

Pours deep dark black, some red in the edges, small tan head forms, some lace spots. Smell is awesome, very malty, toffee/chocolate and tons of coffee aroma, very raw and very powerful. Taste is malty and choclate/toffee notes are in the front, followed by a big coffee roast hit, lots of coffee in the finish and aftertaste. Mouthfeel is full bodied with low carbonation. I really enjoyed this, better on cask than in bottle, and I understand this was the first time DDC has ever done Peche Mortel on cask!

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Photo of tatterdash
4.78/5  rDev +8.4%
look: 5 | smell: 4.5 | taste: 5 | feel: 5 | overall: 4.5

Sampled this at Volo Cask Days 2006, what an amazing event!

Appearance was a black, even held up to light, with a small dark brown head that dissolved into a ring of brown bubbles. Aroma of black coffee, dark chocolate. Taste was like chocolate-covered espresso beans, very complex and warming and got better with each sip. This was the smoothest beer I have tried, silky and thick and the high ABV is almost inperceptable. Wow... So glad I tried this, best beer Canada makes IMHO.

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Photo of grub
4.67/5  rDev +5.9%
look: 4.5 | smell: 5 | taste: 4.5 | feel: 5 | overall: 4.5

sampled on cask as part of the volo cask days 2006. thanks to ralph and all involved for putting together an awesome fest.

pours a nearly opaque black colour with a thin dark head.

armoa is great. rich and roasty. coffee and bittersweet coffee.

taste is awesome. rich, roasty coffee flavour. thick biscuity malt. bittersweet chocolate. nice alcohol warmth on the way down.

mouthfeel is great. big and thick, with a nice low carbonation level.

drinkability is also excellent. i wish i had steady access to this beer. i'd love to try this one with a year or two of aging as i think it'd be even more amazing. highly recommended to everyone.

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Photo of stangelj
4.73/5  rDev +7.3%
look: 5 | smell: 4.5 | taste: 5 | feel: 4.5 | overall: 4.5

On tap at Dieu Du Ciel served in a tulip glass. Just exceptional appearance, black body with a dark brown head that persists, beautiful. Smells of roasted coffee. Taste, well let's just say it hits with a bang, what flavor! Very rich espresso flavor with a hint of caramel. One of the best tasting beers I've ever had. Mouth feel is medium bodied with light carbonation, very smooth. I found this beer quite drinkable despite the richness and high alcohol. It didn't take long to go through 2 glasses along with a nice cheese plate of assorted Quebec cheeses. I highly recommend this beer.

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Photo of
4.62/5  rDev +4.8%
look: 4.5 | smell: 5 | taste: 4.5 | feel: 4.5 | overall: 4.5

22oz. bottle at The Map Room in Chicago. Bottled 11/04 according to the label. What a beer and what a bar! The translation of the name means "Mortal Sin" -- well, forgive me Father, for I have sinned, liked it, and will do it again if given the chance.

Eased slowly out of the bottle and curled up in my glass. Opaque, black fluid, with just the faintest hints of ruby/mahogany at the edges where the light peeks through. Topped with a medium size, light brown head.

Aroma is coffee - big surprise - paired up with chocolate. Alcohol says hello, and rather loudly at that. As I keep sniffing, a dark fruit - port like character is found lurking in the background. No real hop presence is picked up in the scent.

Flavor is coffee, then coffee, then some more coffee....Did I mention that you taste coffee? After a few sips, I started picking up other flavors such as bittersweet chocolate and mocha. As it warmed, the dark fruits (black cherry, raisins) picked up more, especially in the middle. Equally important was what was lacking - alcohol was fairly well hidden, despite coming across strongly in the aroma. The finish finally brought some hops and a little bit of pepper.

This was a medium to full bodied beer. The carbonation was quite assertive, and helped pick up the beer and move it along. Texture was creamy/thick/chewy. Alcohol warming kicked in about 1/4 through the bottle. Finally, the finish was dry rather than sweet.

A fantastic beer. I am a big coffee fan, so that probably helped. If you don't like coffee, this beer may not work that well for you. It is pricey ($20) and hard to find, but I would still encourage a try, though, as there are so many other things going on in it. Another one of those "How am I going to get some more" beers.

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Photo of OStrungT
4.43/5  rDev +0.5%
look: 5 | smell: 4.5 | taste: 4.5 | feel: 4.5 | overall: 4

This beer pours an oil like black color with a thick, fluffy brown head. The head fades very slowly, leaving many laces.

This beer has a robust coffee aroma. It has a slight chocolate aroma also. It has a sweet malty aroma. Some licorice is also subtly present.

This beer tastes exactly like it smells. Coffee up front. Behind that, chocolate, and licorice mix in. It has a nice roasted malt, sweet flavor as well.

This beer is very thick. It goes duwn quite smooth, leaving a strong coffee aftertaste. It is low in carbonation, suiting the style perfectly.

I dont think this beer would be the best session beer. It is high in alcohol, and it is quite agressive.

Overall: This beer is great. It is exactly what I expected. Thank you Himerman for this great beer.

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Photo of TurdFurgison
4.43/5  rDev +0.5%
look: 5 | smell: 4.5 | taste: 4.5 | feel: 4.5 | overall: 4

If you plot rarity against price, this beer is far into the upper right quadrant. I paid $18.99 for a 1pt 6.3oz bottle in Chicago (Dobby's in Palatine). I'd never seen it on sale anywhere else yet, so I coughed up the money to try it. The bottle was date stamped Aug 2005, one year before I bought it.

Based on appearance alone this is a top shelf stout, jet black liquid even when I put a light behind the glass. The foam is frothy and thick and fairly light colored considering how dark the beer is.

The smell is coffee stout, actually identical to Founders Breakfast Stout based on recent memory (I had a bottle 1 week ago). The taste's also very similar to Breakfast Stout, but maybe a little stronger coffee flavor in Peche Mortel. The PM bottle states ingredients as "malt, fair trade cofee, hops, water, yeast", and I assume Brasserie Dieu Du Ciel adds more actual coffee than Founders. The after-taste is more bitter than sweet, I'm guessing due to coffee more than hops. I can guess some chocolate into the flavor too.

Mouthfeel is on the thick side and matches the flavor well. Drinkability is pretty good but a little difficult for me to rate too high since a little of the flavor goes a long way.

My opinion: Peche Mortel is a great beer, maybe best of its under-represented style, but nowhere near worth its price.

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Photo of Westsidethreat
4.62/5  rDev +4.8%
look: 4 | smell: 4.5 | taste: 5 | feel: 4 | overall: 4.5

A: Pours a very dark brown, seems somewhat thin. Appears to have low carbonation until a decent head is conjured out of no where. Made up of medium sized dark beige bubbles, the head is falling but leaving a great ring around the glass.

S: Wow. Massive loads of deep roasted coffee. Memories of charred campfire wood. There's also some tobacco, slight vanilla and marshmallow.

T: Immediate strong roasted grains. Then the coffee comes, big and strong. The coffee is not sharp or pungent, not too roasted or too watery, just very rounded and quite superb really. Massive mocha undertones play the second fiddle in this symphony. They move from bitter sweet to creamy milk chocolate and finishes lingering dried cocoa. Some minor notes of butterscotch, molasses and graham. Slight alcohol in the nose, ever so slightly.

M: Full body, bit fuzzy.

D: Not a lot of bad things to say about this beer. Carbonation could be a touch smoother and the head could be a bit bigger. The beer itself is delicious. Highly recommended.

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Photo of bklynbeerbaron
4.73/5  rDev +7.3%
look: 5 | smell: 4.5 | taste: 5 | feel: 4.5 | overall: 4.5

On tap at the source, poured into a tulip glass.

Appearance: Pitch black with a frothy, cappucino-like head that stuck around to the last drop. Just a gorgeous-looking stout.

Smell: Like a bag of fresh coffee beans.

Taste and mouthfeel: Wow. Like a iced espresso with an infusion of dark chocolate, which tempered the intense bitterness an espresso can have a bit. The bitterness was more akin to a truffle liqueur. Intensely flavored, but not so much that it numbs your palate, and the flavor lasts throughout. Finished surprisingly dry, with only a vague hint of smoke. Mouthfeel was creamy at the start and went down silky smooth - just enough carbonation to let you know it's there.

Drinkability: Where was the 9.5 ABV? Seriously. For a sipping beer, I was sippng pretty fast and felt no ill effects afterward. Only thing holding this one back is availability.

Notes: Damn, this beer is gonna haunt me. So good that I went back to have it again the next night, but they were out of it. Searched for bottles before I left town, but came up empty. Not only one of the best stouts I've had, but one of the best beers I've had.

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Photo of laintringulis
4.68/5  rDev +6.1%
look: 5 | smell: 4.5 | taste: 4.5 | feel: 5 | overall: 5

Served in a pub glass. Pours a deep black with large creamy beige head that thins out quickly, but the remainder lasts until the last drop. Full bodied, light to mod carbonation.

Smells of strongly roasted coffee, spicy alcohol, and a lighter oaky-smokiness.

Tastes strongly of coffee, bitter, but not overroasted. Sweet caramel maltiness and a lighter chocolate backfinish. The alcohol quite loud in its presence, especially on the back finish. When I have drank this in the past, I recall the alcohol and hops blending more with the overall taste. I don't know if this is because this is a May 2004 bottle, or if my tastes have changed since I've had this last. This is not as good as I remember, the hops have lessened; the alcohol has taken over the supreme espresso/coffee maltiness.

Very nice mouthfeel, full mouthfeel, light oiliness that adds to the drinkability and breaks up some of the alcohol. Still dangerously drinkable.

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Photo of jdhilt
4.42/5  rDev +0.2%
look: 4 | smell: 4.5 | taste: 4.5 | feel: 4 | overall: 4.5

Pours a two finger light brown head that fades quickly leaving traces of lace. Black as coal. Light carbonation and heavy bodied. Strong coffee nose. Starts with a strong roasted coffee flavor and stays that way, the 9.0% ABV is totally hidden, easy to drink, you have to like coffee. Pricey - $17.00 for a 660ml bottle from Liquid Solutions Tigard, Or.

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Photo of TastyTaste
4.88/5  rDev +10.7%
look: 5 | smell: 4.5 | taste: 5 | feel: 5 | overall: 5

Thanks to AKSmokedPorter for the bottle.

Appearance: Absolutely pitch black, big tan fizzy head lingers a while. Lacing is very sticky.

Smell: Rip roarin' raw coffee, also some toasted coconut, sweet cream, and alcohol vapors. Wow, never encountered a beer that smells like this, very inviting and interesting.

Taste: What is this beer? I have never had anything wuite like it, very delicious, smooth, and enjoyable. The creamy sweet flavors are balanced well by the bitter coffee. The whole flavor is very well rounded and delicious. Fantastic.

Drinkability: A little different and more dessert-like than many beers in the style, the whole thing is silky smooth and well crafted. You have made a very good ber Dieu Du Ciel. Too bad you charge an arm and a leg for this stuff.

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Photo of scruffwhor
4.27/5  rDev -3.2%
look: 3.5 | smell: 4 | taste: 4 | feel: 5 | overall: 5

Poured from a 22oz bomber. I bought this beer because some Chi BA's wouldn't shut up about this beer when the Map Room had it on tap. Plus at either Sam's, Binny's, Sal's were all $19.99 a bottle. But I eventually broe down and bought one and was glad I did. The bottled on date was August 2005. So almost a year old.

Appearance- Pours a viscous motor oil black brown with hardly any liught penetration when held directly to the light. All that was noted were some lighter brown highlights around the top edges of the beer. The head was a decent one and a half finger head with a slowly disappearing foam after each sip.

Smell- When it was at its coldest, the coffee aroma was the strongest. But as it warmed up the coffee bean aroma mixed with a creamy, roasted malt and noticeable hops.

Taste- Starts out with a true coffee bean flavor mixed with a dash of vannillin zucker. But an almost black coffee flavor! Just how I always take my coffee. As the beer warms, more roasted malt flavors stick out with more chocolate and rye hop flavors.

Mouthfeel- Good and creamy and malty. Inky, oily and silky all at different intervals. I wouldn't recommend having this beer with anything. Just drinki the whole glass by itself and then eat myabe a chocolatey dessert.

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Photo of HimerMan
4.73/5  rDev +7.3%
look: 5 | smell: 4.5 | taste: 5 | feel: 4.5 | overall: 4.5

22oz bottle; served in a Delirium Tremens glass.

Awesome black pour with a very generous head that is almost chocolate in smell and dark tan in color. Wonderful smell and bittersweet taste at the opening.

Incredible lacing on the glass, very sticky head and frothy like a cappuccino - quite nice. Taste is intense coffee and large notes of chocolate and mild bitterness followed by strong bitterness. Hops barely present, unless they used coffee as their hops. This is truly an excellent stout.

Overall – strong coffee tastes, with a wild chocolate aroma that comes through as a dark/bittersweet flavor. This is a bit hard to drink a lot of; especially without food as it is intense and very sweet. However, this would compliment a nice dessert or be a great after dinner beer to enjoy.

I would strongly advice coffee/stout drinkers alike to look beyond the price and give this a shot. I think this is outstanding and look forward to having another one in the near future. This does have a ridiculous amount of coffee flavor - and when you are in the mood for a nice dark chocolate/coffee stout - this is flawless.


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Photo of ybnorml
4.19/5  rDev -5%
look: 3.5 | smell: 4.5 | taste: 4 | feel: 4 | overall: 4.5

A dark brown/black beer. Has a nice foamy brown head. It smells like chocolate covered coffee beans. There is also an earthy malt note in the background. The chocolate coffee bean character continues in the taste with the coffee taking full control at the swallow. If you have ever eaten a chocolate covered esspresso bean then this comes mighty close. Especially with that coffee flavor that sits at the back of your throat long after you are done.

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Photo of BuckeyeNation
4.23/5  rDev -4.1%
look: 5 | smell: 4.5 | taste: 4 | feel: 4.5 | overall: 4

Obscurant obsidian. The coffee-with-cream colored crown is Belgianesque in size and texture and fills the majority of the glass immediately after a gentle pour. I love the thickly creamy, yet airy, melted nature of the foam as it slowly deflates. This may be the single best looking head on any stout... ever. Thick, chunky hunks of lace stick to most of the available glassy surface. An astounding appearance.

Keeping in mind that I haven't had a huge number of coffee-added ales, this one may be the most powerfully aromatic coffee beer in existence. In fact, it smells exactly like freshly ground coffee beans, not beer. On further assessment, there's an intense bittersweet chocolatiness as well. This is a no nonsense, no apologies, in your face aroma. If I was a coffee lover, it'd be perfect.

Javalaaanche!!! Mon Dieu! As above, I can't imagine any beer on planet Earth that tastes more like iced (cool actually) coffee than Peche Mortel. I'm not sure if Canadians are required to list ingredients from most abundant to least, like Americans are, but I find it interesting that Fair-Trade coffee comes before water on the label.

I don't mind coffee stouts at all, as long as the flavor of the beans is complementary to the beer as a whole. This one though, is so all encompassingly coffeeish that I'm struggling to figure out how I feel about it as beer. Again, if you're a java junkie, you'll be in seventh heaven. If not, like me, you'll be less than thrilled.

As the middle portion of the bomber approaches, I'm able to re-route the raging coffee river just enough to appreciate small tributaries of roasted black malt and bittersweet chocolate. However, it's like trying to filter out a nearby jackhammer enough to appreciate a Mozart concerto at low volume. Hard to do, but worth the effort.

In the final reckoning, I can appreciate this beer for the masterpiece it is. Having said that, Brasserie Dieu Du Ciel may have overdone it with the coffee and effectively obliterated the beerness of the beer. No alcohol is appreciated on the palate and very little is making its way to my brain. Actually, what's happening is that the undoubtedly sky-high amount of caffeine is counteracting the depressant effect of the alcohol. It's an interesting effect that is becoming more interesting as the ounces fly by.

The body/mouthfeel is first-class all the way. I've had bigger, thicker, creamier, more viscous stouts, but this one does a great job in every one of those areas. The aural evidence of a highly carbonated beer (at crown cracking) and the visual evidence (on the pour) are not borne out in the mouth.

I find it interesting (and ironic) that a brewery named 'God of Heaven' brews a double stout called 'Mortal Sin'. Peche Mortel could use a little of that tension, a little of that fascinating dichotomy, instead of being a steamroller of a coffee beer that doesn't allow complexity to flourish and, therefore, ends up being one-dimensional. For the millionth time... if you love coffee as much as you love beer, then Peche Mortel should be at the top of your wish list.

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Photo of sacfly
4.6/5  rDev +4.3%
look: 4.5 | smell: 4.5 | taste: 5 | feel: 4.5 | overall: 4

22oz bottle served at Monk’s Café

Poured an opaque black color with a thick brown head. Smell is roasty and coffee. Taste follows suit with a creamy double espresso taste and texture. Wow. This is the best coffee stout I have ever had bar none. Seems like a ton of Cafra malt? Coffee beans? Whatever it is, I want to switch my regular coffee to this… just don’t think my boss would enjoy that. You would never know this is 9% ABV until the tingle at the end of the 22ozer. Worth the price.

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Photo of ascavuzzo
4.7/5  rDev +6.6%
look: 4.5 | smell: 4.5 | taste: 5 | feel: 4.5 | overall: 4.5

Excellent beer. Dark brown with head about an inch thick. Great coffee smell and taste. This is one of the best beer I ever had. You gotta love Dieu Du Ciel in Montreal for making this fine example of a coffee stout. Alcohol level is high but doesn't over power the smell and taste of the beer. Any one who loves beer and coffee needs to try this beer. Only draw back is that it is very hard to find. I know Monks Cafe in Philly had it about two months ago so if you are in Philly - drop in to see if they have it

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Photo of kmcnair
4.65/5  rDev +5.4%
look: 4.5 | smell: 4.5 | taste: 4.5 | feel: 5 | overall: 5

Bottled on 11/04.

Pours a very deep dark brown and makes a huge rocky tan head. Its close to, but not quite black.

Aroma is pure coffee, open a fresh bag of beans and this is what you have. There's some nice cocoa undertones too, but mostly fresh roasted coffee.

And the flavor is really all about coffee, its fortunate that I don't mind a nice cup of joe every now and again. Rich deep roasted espresso, dark bittersweet chocolate, light sweetness. Very well balanced, smooth bitterness that I think comes more from the bean than the hop. Offers up nice malty complexity all around.

Crisp and heavily carbonated, medium to full body and finishes with a spicy dry finish. It drinks like a belgian. This is a really nice quality that is uncommon to most double stouts, no thick viscosity here, just clean and dry... I'm really curious what the FG is. If I had to guess, I'd call it 1.010ish. Fantastic!

This is way too easy to drink, the 9% alcohol is nearly invisible. I love this beer. I gotta find a way to trade for some more!

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Photo of grynder33
4.4/5  rDev -0.2%
look: 4.5 | smell: 4.5 | taste: 4.5 | feel: 4.5 | overall: 4

Sticking my nose in the glass was like walking into a starbucks, the coffee so overwhelming it was useless to go for anything else, Taste was also coffee dominated,but not as rich full and intense as thearoma would lead you to believe,a touch of sweetness coffee bean bitterness in the end. The price makes it an occasional treat, an honest to god caffine buzz for several hours after consumption

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Photo of Prufrock
3.92/5  rDev -11.1%
look: 4 | smell: 4.5 | taste: 4 | feel: 4 | overall: 3

22.3 oz. bottle into a pint glass.

pitch black, even against the light, with a touch of dark tan head.

tons of coffee in the aroma. a mix of coffee beans, hot brewed coffee, and burnt coffee grounds. a touch of raisins and sugary chocolate behind the coffee aromas.

rich, full mouthfeel and a medium carbonation. strong coffee flavors throughout, with the finish a touch sweeter and a little vinous. strong coffee component gets stronger as the beer warms and gets slightly tiresome towards the end of the bottle.

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Photo of connecticutpoet
3.93/5  rDev -10.9%
look: 4.5 | smell: 4 | taste: 4 | feel: 4 | overall: 3.5

This beer was a very dark brown, clear offering that produced a 3 finger tan head when poured into my pint glass. It was enjoyed during a viewing of the extended version of "The Fellowship of the Ring", and it complimented the movie well.

The aroma was dark roasted malt, coffee, and slightly sweet, with a light hint of dark fruits. Complex.

Taste was of very dark roasted malt, bitter roasted coffee beans, and a little bit of hop bitterness. I expected a bit more in the way of coffee richness. What I detected could have come from the malt itself without addition of coffee beans to the brew.

Mouthfeel was pretty good, about as chewy as expected... but a little too bitter and mouth-puckering.

Drinkability... not bad for a double stout, but the price knocks it down a bit. I am glad I had it, since it is my goal to try as many of the top 100 (and worst 100 as well)... but I don't think it was worth $15.99. I thought Speedway Stout was better.

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Photo of Sammy
4.2/5  rDev -4.8%
look: 4.5 | smell: 4.5 | taste: 4 | feel: 4.5 | overall: 4

Dark coffee, coffee aroma with some booziness and tiny head. Bottle from Dr. Jay via Sam's in Chicago. Smooth and medium mouthfeel, tasty, some richness. A bit overrated. A speeedway stout caffeine and alcohol melange. A bit of lace on way down. Understated carbonation. 2005 bottled.

Worked as the clear winner, on cask at Volo cafe in fall 2006 and that is my ranking. Coffee aroma, and thick chocolate coffee was superb.

Cask on in fall 2007 was way too much coffee grinds and did not work.

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Photo of Boto
4.28/5  rDev -2.9%
look: 4.5 | smell: 4 | taste: 4.5 | feel: 4.5 | overall: 4

660ml bottle: Bottled 08/05. It was with great anticipation that I opened this beer. I was a touch disappointed, as I thought it may fall into my top ten beers. It pours a somewhat thick, inky brown color. There was a good bit of a tan head on it that lingers for awhile. The aroma definitely has coffee in it. A bit of a smokiness to the nose also. The taste is definitely coffee, with some of the smokiness in there also. The taste is somewhat bitter, but there is a hint of sweet chocolate malt hiding in there also. This beer is quite good, but I don’t quite agree with some of the very high ratings.

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Photo of Crosling
3.68/5  rDev -16.6%
look: 4 | smell: 3.5 | taste: 4 | feel: 3 | overall: 3.5

22’er. Black color. Thick, creamy head. Moderately aromatic, mainly just pure dry coffee grounds and perhaps a touch of vinous fruits and chocolate. In terms of the flavor, there isn’t much besides the coffee addition. It’s substancial enough to still retain loads of flavor, but its devoid of anything close to malt complexity and the body and texture is definately lacking as well.

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Péché Mortel from Brasserie Dieu du Ciel!
Beer rating: 4.41 out of 5 with 5,206 ratings