Solstice D'hiver
Brasserie Dieu du Ciel!

Solstice D'hiverSolstice D'hiver
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Brasserie Dieu du Ciel!
Quebec, Canada
American Barleywine
Ranked #154
Ranked #14,677
3.92 | pDev: 9.95%
Nov 12, 2023
Dec 10, 2003
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.
Recent ratings and reviews. | Log in to view more ratings + sorting options.
Ratings by brureview:
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Reviewed by brureview from Massachusetts

4.16/5  rDev +6.1%
look: 4 | smell: 4.25 | taste: 4.25 | feel: 4 | overall: 4
Even though it’s near the Spring solstice, this winter solstice beer is perfect.

Deep caramel color with a 2F head.

Excellent aroma of dates, and other dried fruit.

Medium body.

The aroma flavors carries through to the taste.

The bitterness in the finish is a bit too much, and should be toned down for future brews.

Overall, an excellent brew, but the bitterness should be toned down.
Mar 18, 2023
More User Ratings:
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Reviewed by 2beerdogs from California

3.91/5  rDev -0.3%
look: 3.75 | smell: 4 | taste: 4 | feel: 3.75 | overall: 3.75
Thanks to CarolinaCardinals for this one.
Sent in barleywine/Stout Big #1
Pours a slightly roiled brown. Slight head quickly dissipates. Almost no lacing.
Smell is a balance between a smooth date, fig, caramel, and fruity sweetness, and an assertive pine resin bitterness.
taste is more complex in the sweet notes. Dates, figs, toffee, caramel, toasted almond, sherry, and hints of apple brandy yet...A firm piney hop bitterness is not shy. The sweetness is slapped back a bit until a draw is called. Definitely an American barleywine.
Mouthfeel has a medium heft, light carb, and a subtle warmth. Is it ABV, or is it the hops? Not sure. But this is a nice ride.
Nov 12, 2023
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Rated by Ushouldbeworkinh from England

3.78/5  rDev -3.6%
look: 4 | smell: 3.5 | taste: 4 | feel: 3.5 | overall: 3.75
Ruby colour, boozy, a little sweet. Dark fruit flavour, not much carbonation.
Jun 17, 2023
Rated: 4.16 by zotzot from Vermont

Mar 08, 2023
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Reviewed by Sheppard from Massachusetts

3.62/5  rDev -7.7%
look: 4.5 | smell: 3.75 | taste: 3.5 | feel: 3.5 | overall: 3.5
Pours a medium to dark brown. Burnt caramel and menthol on the nose. This is certainly a hop forward barleywine as the resiny earthy wood sandalwood and cedar notes really present themselves at the forefront. Maybe some earl grey as well. There is some malty sweetness to back it coming through in a brown bread and honey kind of way. It is a bit fusel as well. A little too earthy and hot for my taste.
Dec 19, 2022
Rated: 4.66 by Argail from Louisiana

Sep 07, 2022
Rated: 4.35 by BeardedWalrus from North Carolina

Sep 01, 2022
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Reviewed by Bouleboubier from New Jersey

4.01/5  rDev +2.3%
look: 3.75 | smell: 4 | taste: 4 | feel: 4.25 | overall: 4
(11.5 oz bottle, twist-off crown, 'bottled on': 2023-01-05; purchased single off shelf at Shangy's last week... poured into a snifter)

L: polished-clear, ruby-black tea colored liquid; tight, honey-combed foam, big bubbles scattered... large, but thin hurricane pad breaks away from thin, messy collar... lace slash at the top, but little below

S: black cherry hard candy, dark caramel... in a few moments, dates and leather... subtle brown bread malty underbelly... potency and expression decent, but requiring close attention and deep breathing

T: deep, dark toasty edge, bitter and cutting, stridently booming above the dark candy sugar-coated, dry-roasted malt foundation... definitely boldly malty; perhaps the alcohol is hiding just behind the bitterness, driving its sharp attack... rue and ghostly allspice

F: svelte, strained silkiness... bit of roundness, but the dark fire singes off the plump edges... no residual oily or resinous trails... dry and punishingly bitter... ultimately arrestingly sippable, but nothing like a heavily-hopped, soup of unfermentables

O: not so much an American barleywine but a belligerently herbal-bitter, strong English brown ale... not what I was expecting at all... I do like this, but I was craving some rounder, mushier malts (1974)
Aug 03, 2022
Rated: 4.06 by BeerForMuscle from New Jersey

May 05, 2022
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Reviewed by jlindros from Massachusetts

3.84/5  rDev -2%
look: 4.25 | smell: 4 | taste: 3.75 | feel: 3.75 | overall: 3.75
Not sure how I don't have a review for this, and after all these years they still use screw tops
Pours a frothy 1/2 finger off-white head with fair retention, lots of messy lacing, mostly clear auburn reddish color

Nose sweet malts, toasted bread, grains, bread crust, caramel, a bit of toffee, biscuity malt, light spicy hops, hint of reddish fruit

Taste brings sweet malt again but not super sweet, toffee, quite biscuity again, a bit candy like, fair caramel and caramelized sugar, a touch nutty, a bit of reddish fruit, fair alcohol that gets a touch hot with some phenol notes, perfumey alcohol, fair spicy hops with med bitterness getting a bit more like a med-high spicy hop bitterness on the finish, actually almost briny level spicy hop,

Mouth is fuller bod, fair hot alcohol warmth and a little tingle, med-light carb

Overall not bad, a bit on the hot alcohol side and too much spicy hop for my personal tastes but up to style
Apr 03, 2022
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Reviewed by Gajo74 from New York

4.09/5  rDev +4.3%
look: 4 | smell: 3.75 | taste: 4.25 | feel: 4.5 | overall: 4
On draught at Blind Tiger, NYC.
Pours a murky brown color. A modest head dissipates but leaves a persistent creamy ring of lacing.
The nose is bready and biscuity with some earthy hops spices and surprisingly little booze. Aromas of honey, toasted bread, vanilla, dark fruit, grass, and mint.
Sweet and rich with doughy and biscuity malts leading the way, yet not too boozy. Notes of dark fruit, raisin, fig, honey, toasted grains, and some roasted, nutty and chocolate like flavors. The bitterness is effective, as it nicely balanced the grainy and alcohol sweetness with a resiny bitterness.
Full bodied, smooth and gently carbonated. The finish is smooth with some alcohol warmth and enough dryness.
Very easy to drink as far as Barleywines go. I would have again.
Feb 20, 2022
Rated: 3.94 by smi69 from New York

Jan 08, 2022
Rated: 4.05 by mistahmojoryan from Canada (SK)

Oct 23, 2021
Rated: 4.39 by Simon212 from Canada (ON)

Sep 29, 2021
Photo of Bierman9
Reviewed by Bierman9 from New Hampshire

4.21/5  rDev +7.4%
look: 4 | smell: 4.25 | taste: 4.25 | feel: 4 | overall: 4.25
Found a bunch of 11.5oz bottles of this in the beer cave at my workplace. They weren't going anywhere soon so I decided to liberate them.... All bottled 2016-09-08.... Enjoying out in The 'Zebo on a lovely, late summer afternoon....

Poured one into a Tributary sniftah.... it's an opaque, deep brown color. Has light carbo within, and a wispy, off-white rim-clinging head. Lacing is quite sparse, though. The nose suggests an English-style Barleywine, as it has a healthy heaping of caramel and toffee. Mixed in here are lots of rindy, pithy notes, though. The combo is quite enticing. The feel is quite smooth on the tongue, with a decent medium body.

The taste is a lovely mix of myriad flavors. Has more caramel and toffee, then some molasses, black cherry, figs and dates. On top of this malty, fruity sweetness is a load of resinous, piney, pithy hopping. The finish is where those latter qualities linger. This is eminently quaffable, and the 10.5% ABV is hidden well. I'm glad we "found" each other!! Just may have to have another! Prosit!!

4.21/5 rDev +6.9%
look: 4 | smell: 4.25 | taste: 4.25 | feel: 4 | overall: 4.25

Sep 07, 2021
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Reviewed by puck1225 from Texas

4.42/5  rDev +12.8%
look: 4.5 | smell: 4.25 | taste: 4.5 | feel: 4.25 | overall: 4.5
The ratings for this beer seem to have a wide spread but I must come down on the side of a high score. This is a very nice, full flavored and comforting beer.

Poured from a bottle purchased at the Appalachian Vintners in Asheville into a tulip glass. Nice mahogany color with excellent head an beautiful curtain lacing. Rich aroma and taste of dark fruit and caramel. Some sweet dark cherries but not too sweet and a warming booziness. Maybe this beer would be better for a November evening instead of one in August, but I am really enjoying this beer.
Aug 20, 2021
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Reviewed by trevormajor from Ohio

4.5/5  rDev +14.8%
look: 4.5 | smell: 4.5 | taste: 4.5 | feel: 4.5 | overall: 4.5
12. oz bottle, born on 10/19/17, poured into a snifter at 50 degrees F:
L - opaque brown with a hazelnut head that lingered. brown spots on the top, probably due to the fact that this beer is unfiltered
S - caramel, toffee, malt
T - caramel, toffee, malt, wonderful blend
F - medium mouthfeel and carbonation
O - very good, flavors blend together superbly
May 28, 2021
Rated: 4 by Radcpa from Washington

May 03, 2021
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Reviewed by mntlover from Tennessee

3.72/5  rDev -5.1%
look: 4 | smell: 3.75 | taste: 3.75 | feel: 3.75 | overall: 3.5
Bottled Nov 2019. Pours a murky brown work very small light tan head that falls slow for a small add it is.

Aroma is lighter then you would think, caramel, toffee, some light molasses with dark fruit hints.

Taste is bigger then the nose luckily but still not BW big. Malt big on caramel sweetness, not really any toffee but some light molasses or atleast brown sugars. Some light herbal bitterness in the finish with warming alcohol. Really expected more sweetness and malt.

Mouhfeel is medium which also seems lighter then it should be, atleast carbonation is mellow.

Overall not bad, but not as good as I was hoping. Almost old ale like more then BW.
Apr 16, 2021
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Reviewed by LeBron_James from Canada (ON)

3.88/5  rDev -1%
look: 4 | smell: 4 | taste: 3.75 | feel: 3.75 | overall: 4
Pours a dark red/brownish colour. Nice head, looks like a quadrupel.
Smells of sweet floral notes, caramel, maybe some light roasty character, and some ginger maybe.
Taste follows the nose. Quite a sweet beer with lots of caramel, dried fruit, and light herbal notes. The alcohol comes through a little more than I'd like for a 10% beer.
The mouthfeel is a nice medium body with some carbonation.

Overall, I'm probably not going to buy this again but it was cool to try for sure.
Apr 06, 2021
Solstice D'hiver from Brasserie Dieu du Ciel!
Beer rating: 88 out of 100 with 983 ratings