Grande Noirceur
Brasserie Dieu du Ciel!

Grande NoirceurGrande Noirceur
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Russian Imperial Stout
Ranked #258
Ranked #3,767
4.09 | pDev: 8.56%
Brasserie Dieu du Ciel!
Quebec, Canada
Grande NoirceurGrande Noirceur
Notes: The Grande Noirceur (Great Darkness) is a dense black beer with robust roasted flavours. Its imposing bitterness is balanced by the presence of complex malted, caramel notes. It takes its name from the conservative policies of mid-century Quebec. The Grande Noirceur was born at our Montreal brewpub in March of 2004.
Reviews: 139 | Ratings: 447 | Log in to view all ratings and sort
Photo of lmaduells
4.31/5  rDev +5.4%
look: 4.5 | smell: 4 | taste: 4.5 | feel: 4.25 | overall: 4.25

Beer that I liked. The brewery that makes this product seems to be served with high quality. And this is an example. I liked the balance of beer, complying with the style standards. L label and the name, an enchantment.

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Photo of avalon07
3.83/5  rDev -6.4%
look: 4.25 | smell: 3.75 | taste: 3.75 | feel: 4.25 | overall: 3.75

L: Poured from a bottle to a pint glass. Had a dark brown / black color and a thick, opaque consistency. There was a thin, tan-colored, creamy head that lasted an average amount of time. Not much lacing here.

S: An oddly mild aroma of roasted malt, coffee, char, dark fruit, chocolate, and caramel.

T: Tasted of a bit of dark chocolate (less than expected), a whole lot of roasted malt (the dominant element here), a good amount of char, light caramel, a hint of dark fruit (raisins, in particular), and a little coffee. Like the aroma, the flavor is much milder than expected. Not bad, but needs a little boost.

F: A fair amount of carbonation with a dry, smooth finish. Medium-bodied.

O: An uneven beer, but it has some good qualities. Worth a look.

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Photo of mikeinportc
4.15/5  rDev +1.5%
look: 3.75 | smell: 4.25 | taste: 4.25 | feel: 4 | overall: 4

Dated 2015/10/29

Dark cola-brown, with very slight tan head.

Smell is roasty malt, plus a little black coffee & bitter chocolate.

Taste is char, roasted malt, and dark chocolate, similar to chocolate liqueur , but not sweet. There is just a touch of sweetness mid-taste. Finishes with light lingering bitterness.

Feel is medium oily, with light, very fine carbonation.

Overall, quite good. l would like to try it at a younger age, but it is just fine at 3+ years old.

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Photo of Treyliff
4.31/5  rDev +5.4%
look: 4.25 | smell: 4.5 | taste: 4.25 | feel: 4.25 | overall: 4.25

2016 vintage
12oz bottle poured into a snifter

A- pours jet black in color with a one-finger creamy dark tan head that has good retention after the pour

S- robust roasted and charred malt aromas give notes of burnt coffee and dark chocolate, as well as undertones of graham cracker, anise, burnt brown sugar & faded herbal hops

T- bold roasted malt follows the nose with immediate notes of char, coffee roast, molasses, dark fruits & anise. Mid-palate brings out some caramel sweetness, the finish gives more bitter roast and charred malt notes

M- medium-heavy body with moderate carbonation leads to a creamy mouthfeel that continues into a silky, slightly warming finish

O- bold, bitter & roasty, just as a RIS should be

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Photo of LiquidAmber
4.21/5  rDev +2.9%
look: 4 | smell: 4.25 | taste: 4.25 | feel: 4 | overall: 4.25

Poured into a Fremont small snifter. Pours a very dark mahogany brown, appearing opaque black in the glass with a thin brown head that dissipates to patches with light lacing. Aroma of dark toasted and biscuit malt with light char, light chocolate and coffee, a bit boozy with an odd isopropyl note. Flavor is dark toasted malt, quality coffee, dark and mild chocolate, hints of caramel and vanilla. Lingering dark malt, chocolate and vanilla, nice. Medium bodied with light to moderate creaminess. A flavorful, full bodied Russian imperial stout with great coffee and chocolate flavors. Balanced and robust throughout the taste. I'm really happy to find Dieu Du Ciel brews back on our market. It is one of my early experiences with big beers and I've always been a fan of their stouts, Scotch ales and big Belgians. Glad to get to try this one and I'll be back have this again.

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Photo of ryan1788a5
4.62/5  rDev +13%
look: 4.5 | smell: 4.25 | taste: 4.75 | feel: 4.75 | overall: 4.75

12oz bottle poured into a snifter.

A: Inky black with a finger of brown head that settles out in a short time. Spotty lacing.

S: Dark and dense fudge, German chocolate cake, brownie batter, dark chocolate truffles. Roasty. Dark roast coffee. Hints of black currant and plum.

T: Roasty up front with a lot of French roast coffee, char, and smoke. Bitter dark chocolate abounds. Dark chocolate fudge and double chocolate cake. Very slight hints of darkfruit at its core. Lingering roasty finish.

M: Thick and heavy in the mouth. Full bodied, coating, and chewy as hell. You could cut this with a fork and knife. Fine but stiff carbonation has a firm prickling feel on the tongue and scrubs a bit.

O: Russian Imperial Stouts really don't get any better than this. This is textbook, and absolutely delicious! This brewery is so under the radar it isn't even funny. Peche Mortel may get some good praise, but there are several beers they make that I'd personally put ahead of it, and this is one. If you're a style purist, this is your nirvana.

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Photo of patre_tim
4.14/5  rDev +1.2%
look: 4 | smell: 3.75 | taste: 4.5 | feel: 4 | overall: 4

Almost black with a copper hue near the edge when held to the light. Topped with a cherry red foam.

Smells of dark toasted malts, bananas, black liquorice, vanilla, chocolate liquor, and umami soy sauce.

Tastes sweet, with dark toasted, chocolate notes, tar, and a soft char on the finish. Cherries and fruitiness are all through it, and floral notes as well.

Medium, smooth and foamy body. Covers the alcohol well.

Got this in Barrie, ON, drinking it in Northern Ontario Nov 30th, 2017. Very good brew. Even not being my favourite style, I love the brewery, and really enjoy the smoothness of this brew.

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Photo of Lone_Freighter
4.3/5  rDev +5.1%
look: 4 | smell: 4.5 | taste: 4.5 | feel: 3.75 | overall: 4

Poured into a snifter, the appearance was a nice looking dark brown color coming close to black with a thin cap of a little dark eggshell white foamy head that slid off at a mild pace. Just a little bit of some concave lace ran here and there.
The aroma shaped a wonderful blend of milk to dark chocolate sweet to bitter and refined roasty bliss. Light amount of some dark fruity sweetness and a touch of dried black licorice (the sweet side of it).
The flavor lead with the roastiness covering a little bit of the spicy part of the "black licorice" and pulled in a dry bitter dark chocolate edge that seemed to add a bit of dark bread/toast to dryly meet in the aftertaste.
The mouthfeel was about medium bodied with a fair sipping quality about it. Carbonation was a bit under, but I think this was an aged bottle. ABV did feel as projected. Lots of roasty grip beating at my tongue super dry, but I didn't mind too much.
Overall, it's a very nicely done imperial stout that I would love to have again.

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Photo of eberesford
4.06/5  rDev -0.7%
look: 4 | smell: 4.25 | taste: 4 | feel: 4 | overall: 4

Pours black with reddish highlights ar the edge of the glass. The .5cm head dissipates rather quickly leaving a thinnish irregular film that leaves modetate lacing. Aromas: liquorice, dark chocolate, dark fruit; especially prune, some toffee. Flavour: black coffee, burnt toast, could do with a touch more sweetness on the palate. No intrusive alcohol warmth despite the abv. Decent legth, medium bodied so a little on the light side for style. Still very interesting - very drinkable.

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Photo of threeviews
4.59/5  rDev +12.2%
look: 4.25 | smell: 4.5 | taste: 4.75 | feel: 4.5 | overall: 4.5

Decanted from a 11.5oz (330ml) bottle with a twist-off crown(!) into a Teku 2.0 stemmed glass.

A - With the exception of some deep mahogany colors seeping through at the edges of the glass, the beer pours pitch black with a coffee colored head approaching 1-finger with minor retention. (4.25)

S - Baker's chocolate, Burndt Coffee, Molasses and a hint of dark fruit (raisin and prune). Not terribly complex, but a Russian Imperial Stout with all the trimmings. No alcohol in the nose (4.5)

T - Big coffee roast dominates with some baker's chocolate and some treacle rounding things out. Dark fruit sweeetness is countered quite handidly by the roasted malt bitterness. Like the nose, no alcohol infiltrates the palate. (4.75)

M - 9% ABV is not the most burly for an Imperial Stout and it is felt most prominently in the mouth. It features a medium body and with the heavy helping of roasted malts intensifies the bitterness and increases its drinkability. The carbonation also helps to scrub any residual sweetness from the palate and inviting another sip. (4.5)

O - At ~$4.50 a bottle, the value/flavor profile is pretty good and have no problem with that pricepoint here in The States. This is a well conceived beer and sports enough complexity to make it interesting. However, the mouthfeel is a bit thin leaving me a little abandoned. However, the heavy dose of roasted malt and residual bitterness makes this an enjoyable Imperial Stout. That said, I will still prefer the over-the-top flavor profile of Peche Mortel. (4.5)

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Photo of josanguapo
4.5/5  rDev +10%
look: 4.5 | smell: 4.5 | taste: 4.5 | feel: 4.5 | overall: 4.5

From Bierkraft. In Teku glass. Watching Stranger Things 2x03. With caña lomo. Very roasted and bitter, with light sweetness and light notes of licorice and metal, but in general very well balanced and pleasant.

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Photo of thehyperduck
4.31/5  rDev +5.4%
look: 4.5 | smell: 4 | taste: 4.5 | feel: 4.25 | overall: 4.25

341 mL bottle from an LCBO 4-pack that I purchased in late winter/early spring; dated Oct 5 2016 and served barely chilled.

This utterly opaque, jet black stout comes complete with a half-inch of frothy, tan-coloured foam that persists upon the surface for more than ten minutes. A smooth, thick coat of lacing is deposited as it slowly recedes at its seemingly infinitesimal pace; this looks fantastic to me. I'm getting molasses, licorice, fig, prune and plenty of rich, roasted malts on the nose - cocoa, dark chocolate, mocha coffee and perhaps a hint of burnt wood. Buried amidst it all is a faintly noticeable whiff of ethanol.

Borderline hedonistic; this imperial stout makes for an undeniably pleasurable quaff as its flavours of dark fruit, roasted malts and molasses sweetness sweep across the taste buds with each sip. Baker's chocolate and coffee grounds are quite prominent, while notes of plum, fig and date blend more into the background. A hint of vanilla is also discernable, with subtle suggestions of smoke and charred wood; altogether considered, it might seem surprising to learn that this stout never saw the inside of any sort of spirit barrel. The sip concludes with bitter cocoa, herbal licorice and a touch of alcohol; the latter facet also warms the throat a bit as you make your way through the glass. Full-bodied, with very mild carbonation that weakly agitates the palate's surface; it feels slick, smooth, and satisfying as you sip it.

Final Grade: 4.31, an astounding A grade. Dieu du Ciel's Grande Noirceur is everything that a Russian Imperial Stout should be, with an intense, roasted malt-driven front end, succeeded by a firm, moderately bitter back end that includes a slight alcohol burn. This is an imperial stout that looks, smells, feels, and tastes the part, checking all of the boxes while avoiding any pitfalls worth noting. I would not hesitate to purchase another 4-pack of this, and would encourage all stout-loving BAs to treat it in a similar fashion.

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Photo of hanuswalrus
4.09/5  rDev 0%
look: 4 | smell: 4.25 | taste: 4 | feel: 3.75 | overall: 4.25

Bottled on date is 10/24/16. Pitch black in appearance. Not quite motor oil consistency, but looks relatively thick on the pour. Nice brown head. Aroma is a lot of roast, with some leather, tobacco, bitter chocolate and coffee as well. Flavor is much of the same that the nose has. A very roasty, bitter beer with some charred, ashy flavors. Has a nice lingering bitterness that sits on the tongue. Mouthfeel is nice. Not chewy, but satisfying for an Imperial Stout. Just enough sweetness to keep it from becoming acrid. I like this beer quite a bit.

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Photo of TheBierdimpfe
4.08/5  rDev -0.2%
look: 3.75 | smell: 3.25 | taste: 4.25 | feel: 4.75 | overall: 4.5

Aged around 8 months: Opaque black. Creamy brown 3-4 finger head, lasting around 10-15 minutes, with strong lacing but not much legs nor swirl effect. Flavors of dark grains, walnuts, wood, raisins, plums, coffee, cocoa, toffee, vanilla, and herbal hops. Silky light creamy medium body with a light crisp. Strong strength finish, impressive barrel aging effect, with some rauch style smoked hops. A bit leathery with a moderate earthy feel, some brown sugar and cinnamon. Lightly sour from the aging process although manageable. The smell is highly alcoholic but hidden in the mouthfeel, though a highly warming brew that is not overly dry nor lacking much freshness. Rich and densely flavorful, superb balance and intensity, deep complexity although shy in the smell department. Makes a really nice appetizer, yet easy to drink in big quantities. Overall superb quality craft.

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Photo of Bouleboubier
4.03/5  rDev -1.5%
look: 4 | smell: 4 | taste: 4 | feel: 4.25 | overall: 4

(11.5 oz bottle, bottled on 2016-10-24... poured into a Chouffe tulip)

L: chocolate-milk brown, tight, tall pad of foam, with random craters strewn about... pretty much opaque black liquid... bottle was a twist-off, which I only noticed while in the process of prying off the crown the a bottle opener... the foam did fall slowly, scattered webs of lace

S: thin chocolate syrup/ganache with a mild highlight of charcoal-y roast, lightly-burnt wood grain... with underlying dessert-sweet tones, its malty constitution projects to be dense and layered... not very much boozy or hop notes, if any... overall, intense malt awaits?

T: good bit of bold, ashy char and crazy potent roasty bitterness in the finish, with a very delicate dark bitter cocoa note lingering... as expected, dense malty backbone, but any outstanding flavor mostly confined to a narrow spectrum of high-order crystal malt - toasty raisin and currant, extra dry

F: light-medium bodied - compact muscle, but lacking roundness... mildly scraping finish with some peppery heat simmering across the palate - allows/begs some rest between sips... damn dry...

O: one of the more intensely roasty/bitter porter/stout I've ever had - sort of reminds me of a less-nuanced, more-bracing Sinebrychoff... this begs for some sweet, rich, dark-fruit filled chocolate candy to balance/fill out its relatively rough, one-note punch

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Photo of Amguerra305
4.13/5  rDev +1%
look: 4.75 | smell: 4.25 | taste: 4 | feel: 4.25 | overall: 4

Pours almost like a cross between motor oil and syrup and no head lingers in the glass. Smell is toasty with a little bit of chocolate, coffee, and just a bit of sweetness coming across as vanilla for some reason. Pretty spot on for the style with the added nuance of vanilla. The taste is more roast forward than the smell would suggest. There is a bit of sweetness in the nose that is altogether lost in the taste. More burnt acrid RIS than sweet and smooth. It starts strong and bold but it tapers off at the end. Feel is thick with not much carbonation which increases the silky feel. Overall this is a solid and good RIS but not stellar for my tastes.

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Photo of Eamonn-Cummings3
4.33/5  rDev +5.9%
look: 4.25 | smell: 4.25 | taste: 4.5 | feel: 4 | overall: 4.25

Poured from a 12oz bottle into a speiglau stout glass.

Look is pitch black with a tan head.

Aroma is roasted malt with a slight astringency.

Taste is thick and bitter roast malt.

For a beer with a bit of age on it this beer has held up incredibly well.

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Photo of StoutElk_92
4.57/5  rDev +11.7%
look: 4.75 | smell: 4.5 | taste: 4.5 | feel: 4.5 | overall: 4.75

11.5 oz. bottle dated 10-24-2016

Pours black with a creamy tan brown foam head. Smells like milk chocolate, dark chocolate, vanilla, smoky roasted toasted bready malts, caramel, brown sugar, dark molasses, espresso coffee, some dark fruits, with floral earthy herbal grassy pine. Tastes like dry dark bitter baking chocolate, vanilla, smoky roasted toasted bready malts, caramel, brown sugar, dark molasses, black espresso coffee, some dark fruits, with floral earthy herbal grassy pine. Feels medium bodied, creamy with moderate low carbonation. Overall a really nice imperial stout.

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Photo of taxandbeerguy
4.3/5  rDev +5.1%
look: 3.75 | smell: 4.25 | taste: 4.5 | feel: 4 | overall: 4.25

355 ml bottle served cool into a chalice. Purchased from the LCBO for $13.80 CDN for a 4 pack or $3.45 CDN per bottle.

Appearance - black, inky colored beer with a small half finger of tan head. Immense darkness so no details about carbonation and haze levels. Certainly ominous.

Smell - Cacao nibs, hints of licorice blended in with dark chocolate. Subtle sweetness, but mostly on the more bitter malty side. Lots of treacle and molasses perhaps.

Taste - Big an malty, blend of burnt malts, some coffee, dark chocolate, but a little more licorice and anise profile than others in the style. Completely up my alley and one of the best tasting imperial stouts out there. Plenty of smoke for good measure.

Mouthfeel -Smooth and velvety, body is medium-heavy, carbonation is robust and the finish is dry.

Overall - An amazing imperial stout that stacks up nicely with some of the best south of the border. Definitely worth the expenditure of a 4 pack, and I'm thinking about picking up some more to enjoy in the warmer weather, when the odd cool night hits.

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Photo of The-Adjunct-Hippie
3.45/5  rDev -15.6%
look: 4.25 | smell: 3.5 | taste: 3.25 | feel: 3.5 | overall: 3.5

Pours an inky black color with no head.

Aromas of soy sauce and rotten smoked meats. Light aromas of chocolate behind that.

Flavor is extremely hoppy for the style, I can basically taste the bittering hops used, and behind that some heavy roast and smoke, light coffee and dry cooca. Some of the soy sauce element comes out to play as well.

Heavily carbonated for the style which helps the drinkability but doesn't do much for retaining thickness. Dry, acidic and bitter finish.

Overall, it's a stout I'll definitely pass on from now on. Not a big fan at all.

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Photo of GuitarIPA
4.13/5  rDev +1%
look: 4.75 | smell: 4.25 | taste: 4 | feel: 4.25 | overall: 4

Poured from a bottle at Armsby Abbey in Worcester, Mass. The description on the bottle is pretty accurate. Gorgeous dark, frothy head - dark roastedbflavor and a great balance

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Photo of oberon
4.15/5  rDev +1.5%
look: 4.25 | smell: 4.25 | taste: 4 | feel: 4.25 | overall: 4.25

Bottled on 10/24/2016.Pours into a goblet black with a creamy mocha colored head atop that is quick to fade.Molasses and cherry wood aromas,I know know wood was used in this beer but I get that quality.'Meaty' upfront on the palate with sweeter molasses and caramel notes,underlying coffee roast is there but the sweetness is bigger,alcohol creeps as it warms.A fuller almost creamy feel makes it even better.

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Photo of polloenfuego
4.19/5  rDev +2.4%
look: 4.25 | smell: 4 | taste: 4.25 | feel: 4.25 | overall: 4.25

Pours deep almost black with a thin head. The smell is a lovely roast and chocolate combination. Taste follows the nose with roasts dominating, bitter chocolate and a touch of leather. Feel is very nice, medium with medium carbonation. There is no alcohol burn. This is a winner from DDC on my part. A perfect winter beer.

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Photo of kevinlater
4.28/5  rDev +4.6%
look: 4.5 | smell: 4 | taste: 4.5 | feel: 3.5 | overall: 4.5

341ml bottle into snifter. "bottled on 2016-10-15", consumed mar 9 '17. rich chocolate, smoke, caramel, and touches of both coffee and prunes. the feel is a little light, but finishes with an awesome strong dryness. this beer kinda strikes me as a lighter version of founders imperial stout -- very similar flavour profile. great stuff!

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Photo of Cramshawbar
4.25/5  rDev +3.9%
look: 4.25 | smell: 4.25 | taste: 4.25 | feel: 4.25 | overall: 4.25

Dieu du Ciel! doesn't disappoint....again. Even though stouts are not my favourite, the best Canadian brewery manages to make one that is smooth, yet authentic. Again, this is not Peche Mortel, as nothing compares to that, but as a Russian Imperial Stout, this is superb. Get it, drink it, love it.

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Grande Noirceur from Brasserie Dieu du Ciel!
Beer rating: 91 out of 100 with 447 ratings