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Solstice D'hiver | Brasserie Dieu du Ciel!

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Solstice D'hiverSolstice D'hiver

Brewed by:
Brasserie Dieu du Ciel!
Quebec, Canada

Style: American Barleywine

Alcohol by volume (ABV): 10.20%

Availability: Winter

Notes / Commercial Description:
This noble winter beer is brown in colour with flaming red highlights. It has a complex aroma of fruits, alcohol and hops. Its taste is delicately sweet and liquor-like with a hint of burnt caramel. It is a very bitter beer with aromas and flavours reminiscent of red fruit. The aftertaste is accentuated by the wonderful flavour of hops.

Added by Rastacouere on 12-10-2003

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Reviews: 431 | Ratings: 901
Photo of Brew_42
4.06/5  rDev +3.8%
look: 3.75 | smell: 4 | taste: 4.25 | feel: 3.75 | overall: 4

Pours dark amber with a tan head.

Smells of dark fruits, molasses, and malts and the taste follows closely.

Mouthfeel is medium.

Overall a pretty good barleywine.

 165 characters

Photo of LAp
4.5/5  rDev +15.1%
look: 4.5 | smell: 4.5 | taste: 4.5 | feel: 4.5 | overall: 4.5

11.5oz bottle poured into a tulip. Nosing from the bottle presents toffee, caramel, toasted malt, alongside chocolate, and subdued red-fruit with an almost wine-like quality. Pours a murky ruby-amber with an almost-half-finger tan head. Nosing from the glass presents much the same notes as before, with an added sugary, almost candied quality. The palate is dominated by boozy, sugary notes - molasses and brown sugar, reduced dark red fruits (grape and dark cherries with an almost syrupy quality). The mouthfeel is medium-thick, and the truly full body solidifies the force of this big beer's strong palate. Not much carbonation here, which is a good thing, as it would feel out of place in conjunction with the beer's thick quality. Overall, a truly outstanding beer - robust yet nuanced, well-rounded notes with no unfinished edges - a beautiful take on the style.

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Photo of JakeScully
3.65/5  rDev -6.6%
look: 3.75 | smell: 3.75 | taste: 3.5 | feel: 3.75 | overall: 3.75

Pretty good product from the Brasserie Don du ciel here, their ''Barley wine'' solstice d'hiver is worth a try. Caramel and various fruits flavors. Careful it's strong though, 10,2%abv. Only before sleep. Cheers

 212 characters

Photo of LampertLand
4.1/5  rDev +4.9%
look: 4 | smell: 4 | taste: 4.25 | feel: 4 | overall: 4

Brasserie Dieu Du Ciel 'Solstice D'hiver @ 10.2% , served from a 341 ml bottle purchased for $4.50
A-pour is amber from the bottle to a dark amber in the glass with a small beige head leaving a fine streaky lace film along the snifter after every sip
S-complex fruit aromas
T-sweet & boozy with a hoppy finish
MF-ok carbonation , big full body
Ov-big beer from initial por to the last swallow , should be cellared
prost LampertLand

 432 characters

Photo of dbl_delta
3.9/5  rDev -0.3%
look: 3.5 | smell: 4 | taste: 4 | feel: 3.75 | overall: 3.75

Undated bottle into pint glass. Pours a cloudy dark brown with a light tan head. Initial impression is a little bitterness, almost immediately replaced by an understated malty caramel sweetness, followed by booze, finishing bitter. (Nice and symmetrical, eh?) Mouthfeel is slightly on the chewy side; carbonation is light. This is a very sippable Barleywine - a real pleasure to drink. Not quite my favorite for the style (that honor falls to Old Guardian as of now), but Solstice D'Hiver is excellent.
Really cool name, too.

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Photo of Cramshawbar
4/5  rDev +2.3%
look: 4 | smell: 4 | taste: 4 | feel: 4 | overall: 4

A lovely brew, it's like Peche Mortel's weaker sister. Less body, less flavour, less of everything but still a nice option to have. I would highly recommend it.

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Photo of mobrado
4.46/5  rDev +14.1%
look: 3.5 | smell: 4.25 | taste: 4.75 | feel: 4.25 | overall: 4.5

Had a bottle of this with some age on it. (I think... It was a dusty one from the bottle shop.) It's not a pretty sight, but I thought it tasted glorious. Not as sweet as Old Ruffian or Old Guardian and somehow bigger and even more robust than Bigfoot. My favorite barleywine so far.

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Photo of DaveBar
4.06/5  rDev +3.8%
look: 4 | smell: 4.25 | taste: 4 | feel: 4 | overall: 4

Purchased in QC for $3.00. 341ml bottle served at 9deg C in a tulip.

A- Opens well and pours next to no head at all. Very dark brown colour and filtered clear.

S- Good malt here. Spicey and rich. Cinnamon hints with caramel

T- Roasted malty good. Nice hop base too. It's there and done well. Bittering hops a plenty. Touch of a smoke there but very barely. Touch boozy. Well blended as nothing comes out of place. Tried and true brew

M- Dry and tart

O- I like this one. Will buy again for sure.

Food Pairing

This wonderful little brew went well with........ Roast pork and root veggies. Season how you like but I like heavy pepper crust then low and slow.


 673 characters

Photo of rodbeermunch
3.39/5  rDev -13.3%
look: 3.25 | smell: 3 | taste: 3.5 | feel: 3.75 | overall: 3.5

Big yellow pour and white head 1" on the top. Aroma didn't reveal this to be bretty. Almost more like a pale ale.

Taste seemed over carbonated and plain. A little bit of flowery-ness to it, and the mouthfeel was amazing for being 8%. Yeast flavors weren't pungent, more clean, earthy. I wouldn't recommend someone spending $15 on a bottle of this, no way. No off flavors, but nothing special. Good not great.

 417 characters

Photo of snaotheus
3.71/5  rDev -5.1%
look: 4 | smell: 3.5 | taste: 3.75 | feel: 3.75 | overall: 3.75

3oz pour at Hard Liver Fest 2016

Pours a ruby amber with a medium head. Aroma is woody, musty, and boozy.

Taste is dominated by hoppy bitterness, but shows a little of the aroma's characteristics underneath.

Mouthfeel is dry and light. Overall, very tasty beer. One of the ones that I liked during the festival.

 325 characters

Photo of Catracho5
3.91/5  rDev 0%
look: 4 | smell: 4.25 | taste: 3.75 | feel: 4 | overall: 3.75

Bottle poured into a snifter

A: Pours a dark reddish-brown with a almost tan colored head, some slight lacing, no head retention, not too many bubbles streaming from the bottom, looks hazy.

A: Burnt brown sugar, caramel, sweet dark fruits like raisins, malty sweetness, overall smells really sweet, picking some up alcohol on the nose.

T: Like the nose, burnt and sweet characteristics, bitterness, it tastes great up until the finish where there is a medicinal like flavor that just doesn't fit, alcohol does come through pretty strong.

M: Medium bodied, low carbonation, smooth, dry finish.

O: I was hoping for more because most of their beers are really good but this does come off a little messy and out of place. It has a strange medicinal taste at the end.

 769 characters

Photo of woodychandler
3.81/5  rDev -2.6%
look: 4 | smell: 4.25 | taste: 3.5 | feel: 4 | overall: 3.75

My last of Nouvelle Bière d'Hiver Dimanche aka New Beer Sunday (Week 574) & none too soon! It has been a real roller coaster of a day between spiced & non-spiced, big & smaller, et al. This bottle came from Hunger 'n' Thirst and while I have others from Brasserie Dieu du Ciel!, they are just going to have to wait.

From the bottle: "This noble winter beer is brown in colour with flaming red highlights. It has a complex aroma of fruits, alcohol and hops. Its taste is delicately sweet and liquor-like with a hint of burnt caramel coming from the malt and a prolonged boiling time. It is a very bitter beer with aromas of hops and alcohol, and flavours reminiscent of red fruit brought by the English-type yeast we use to ferment it. The aftertaste is accentuated by the wonderful flavour of hops."; "Illustration: [email protected]"; "Unfiltered".

I have grown to realize that as soon as I see "Unfiltered" anywhere on the label of the bottle or CAN, a gentle pour/Glug is on order. I Pop!ped the cap & did exactly that, resulting in a brief finger of foamy, light-tan head with extremely limited retention. Even a swirl in the glass failed to raise anything more than that. It should also be noted that this came in a screw-top bottle for some inexplicable reason. Color was Dark Brown to Very Dark Brown (SRM = > 27, < 34) with NE-quality clarity. Nose had a brandy-like quality, very much of dried, dark fruits like cherries, raisins and prunes, but with a strong fusel alcohol heat. My sinuses opened right up! Mouthfeel was big, thick, viscous & solid and laid on my tongue like a blanket. It had a pronounced heat, followed by a rich, dark fruitiness. I really tasted cherries, like Kirsch, in my mouth. Warming, it had an earthiness that reminded me more of an English Barleywine than an American one. I want to research this one a bit further when I finish. Speaking of the finish, it was dry, very hot, like it could have spent even longer in the bottle, cooling to leave a dark fruitiness in its wake. This was a great beer to have as a nightcap. I would cellar one if I see it again. There is no doubt in mind that aging will improve its sharp edges.

 2,172 characters

Photo of rypkr
3.64/5  rDev -6.9%
look: 2.5 | smell: 4 | taste: 3.5 | feel: 4.25 | overall: 3.5

What a mess. Arguably the ugliest beer I've ever poured. Smells fair, tastes less than stellar (for $5/11oz), and then great dry mouthfeel.

Granted I'm no barleywine expert but this is just a hapharzardous mess imo.

 216 characters

Photo of GarthDanielson
4.21/5  rDev +7.7%
look: 4 | smell: 4.25 | taste: 4.25 | feel: 4 | overall: 4.25

Poured from a bottle into a snifter, the beer is a opaque, muddled, toffee brown coloring with no head. Aromas of booze first and foremost, with a rich, solid follow of toffee, caramel, molasses, vanilla, apple, date, raisins, brown sugar,and earthy notes. Very rich, but balanced. Flavors are rich and creamy smooth forward, heavy on apple, caramel, toffee, date, raisins, and woody and earthy highlights. Very layered and dynamic palate, with lots of earthy characteristics providing depth to the flavor profiles. Smooth, rich, creamy body, with a slow building warmth as you drink. The aftertaste is more of the old world fruit characteristics, with a boozy component, and subtle vanilla highlights. Smooth, rich, slow finish, with a solid boozy and richly sweet linger. Very solid representation of the style.

 813 characters

Photo of Meyers1023
4/5  rDev +2.3%
look: 3.75 | smell: 3.75 | taste: 4.25 | feel: 3.75 | overall: 4

Poured a very murky dark Amber color. It had a tan color head that disappeared almost instantly. The nose is sweet, caramel and alcohol, with a bit of floral from the hops. The flavor is very malt forward with a caramel taste giving it sweetness but you do get a slight bitter bite before it finishes boozy. The feel is medium with decent carbonation and a little thickness to it. This is an easier drinking barley wine. I was expecting more alcohol flavor but glad I was wrong.

 478 characters

Photo of stortore
3.99/5  rDev +2%
look: 3.75 | smell: 4 | taste: 4 | feel: 4 | overall: 4

12 ounce bottle into a snifter.

Pours a fairly dark amber, cloudy, with a small head. A thin foamy ring rode down the glass. Smell brings malt, purple grapes, plums, figs, dates, a little caramel and molasses. Slight smoky aroma. Taste gives up malt, plums, figs, less grapes and more caramel than the nose. Some bitterness throughout, light alcohol. Smooth, good level of carbonation. Lighty body than most in style, but more than substantial enough to support the ABV.

Grape aroma and taste give this a different twist for a barleywine. Lots of flavors, hops are well integrated and complimentary. Well worth a purchase.

 632 characters

Photo of TheDoctor
3.93/5  rDev +0.5%
look: 3.75 | smell: 3.75 | taste: 4 | feel: 4 | overall: 4

This is a pretty tasty little barleywine. It pours nice enough with a dark brown body with ruby highlights and a thickish little tan head. The aroma is not super strong but is caramely and slightly boozy with some toasted malt. The flavor is similar. It is a lot less harsh tasting than other barleywines I have had. Layers of thick malt flavor (toast, grains, nuts, toffee, caramel) and some leathery booze flavor with a strong herbal/medicinal hop kick that really comes through as it warms.
Fine beer overall. Would have again.

 536 characters

Photo of Ciocanelu
4/5  rDev +2.3%
look: 4 | smell: 4 | taste: 4 | feel: 4 | overall: 4

Clear mahogany color with light brown head. Aroma is very floral, makes me think of white roses. I can't tell if it's from the yeast or the hops. Taste is also floral and yeasty at first with some caramel notes but gets bitter and roasty on the finish. Lingers bitter and perfumey in the aftertaste. Body and carbonation are medium. Very fragrant barleywine. Also quite bitter, making it easy to drink.

 402 characters

Photo of jopezu
4/5  rDev +2.3%
look: 4 | smell: 4 | taste: 4 | feel: 4 | overall: 4

pours a very cloudy mahogany amber with a medium head that poofs. nose; sugar, booze, fig & hops. taste; caramel malt, raisin, burnt sugar, bitter earthy hops & dark cherry. some slight wood spiciness as well. medium carbonation and medium+ mouthfeel. the 10.2% shows a touch in heat & sting, but not overly - pleasant and warming. not very complex, but an easy drink if barleywines are your thing. :)

 408 characters

Photo of Boto
4.23/5  rDev +8.2%
look: 4.25 | smell: 4.25 | taste: 4.25 | feel: 4 | overall: 4.25

Draught @ Eulogy: This one pours a clear dark brown color. There was a small off white head that left lots of lacing. Good nose. Lots of caramel malts, some earthiness, perhaps some dark fruits and faint spices. The taste is very good. Some sweetness, dark fruits, malts, spices, as well as a touch of roastiness and smoke.

 323 characters

Photo of Haydn-Juby
2.84/5  rDev -27.4%
look: 3 | smell: 2.75 | taste: 2.75 | feel: 3 | overall: 3

L: A tawny/ruby red color. Visibly viscous with a thick, well retained head. A bit cloudy.

S: Lots of booze. Some sweet caramel malt and a fair bit of oxidation.

T: Initially very harsh. I'm hit by a wave of warm alcohol heat; this is waaay more than I would like. Throughout the drinking experience, it became more tame, revealing dark fruit notes. A faint raisin and oxidised/sherry/port note. A bit of biscuity toasted malt as well. Some faint floral hops as well - but very faint. Mildly sweet but potently bitter.

F: Very thick and creamy. Leaves me with slightly sticky lips. Definitely lingers on the palate.

O: I didn't really like it and wouldn't buy again. It was way too boozy for me, but I could see it aging nicely. Barely wines aren't really my style; take my rating with a grain of salt.

 807 characters

Photo of CanadianBacon
4.12/5  rDev +5.4%
look: 3.75 | smell: 4.25 | taste: 4.25 | feel: 3.75 | overall: 4

Appearance - This beer pours a cloudy brown color with a small bit of mocha head, the head fades fast and carbonation doesnt seem all that lively.

Aroma - Aromas of alcohol, toffee, caramel,vanilla and oak.

Taste - the flavor profile is fairly complex, It starts off with a boozyness from the alcohol, this is not offputting more of a warming feeling you get from it, next up is toffee some burnt caramel, vanilla and oak, followed by some floral hoppy bitterness on the end.

Feel - medium-full body, some light pricks on the tongue from the carbonation, bitter finish.

Overall - This is my first barley wine and I enjoyed it, looking forward to trying more over the winter. Cheers!

Feel -

 699 characters

Photo of VbolieuV
4.17/5  rDev +6.6%
look: 3.5 | smell: 4 | taste: 4.25 | feel: 4.5 | overall: 4.25

Dark amber/brown in color with a small white head that disappear quickly, with some carbonation visible. The nose is dominated by dark fruits with hints of sweetness from the alcohol and really subtle smell of hops. Really nice taste, you get roasted malts first with some dark fruits (mostly black cherries) and a small alcohol burn. There's quite a big hops presence for a Barleywine, nice bitterness to finish it off. Really a good winter beer, the warmer the beer gets the better it is.

 490 characters

Photo of Beejay
4.06/5  rDev +3.8%
look: 3.75 | smell: 4 | taste: 4.25 | feel: 3.75 | overall: 4

A: A murky brown with a small tan head that comes out from the body of the beer, only to fade back into a ring.

S: Caramel and brown sugar sweetness overlay a bit of roasty malt, and perhaps a touch of smoke. Slight vanilla and oak aromas.

T: Roasted malt, burnt caramel, earthy bitterness, and a dark fruit sweetness. The finish is long, slightly burnt and bitter.

M: Medium thick in body, moderate to low carbonation, a slick cling in the finish.

O: Overall quite an odd brew.. tons of sweetness up front, but a long lingering bitterness counteracts it.

 564 characters

Photo of Tilly
4.14/5  rDev +5.9%
look: 4 | smell: 4.25 | taste: 4 | feel: 4.25 | overall: 4.25

P: Translucent brown with aa slight creamy beige head.
A: Caramel, malt, sloe plum, cherry with a bit of hops.
T: Black cherry, sloe plum, sweetness, alcohol, earthy and mildly hoppy.
M: Slick, a pleasant bitterness. Nice thick after taste. Chocolate cherry. Interesting.
O: This is a great barley wine from a great Canadian brewery!

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Solstice D'hiver from Brasserie Dieu du Ciel!
3.91 out of 5 based on 901 ratings.
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