Nöel Café
Birrificio Le Baladin

Nöel CaféNöel Café
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Beer Geek Stats:
Style:
Belgian Strong Dark Ale
ABV:
9%
Score:
Needs more ratings
Avg:
3.78 | pDev: 7.41%
Reviews:
3
Ratings:
5
From:
Birrificio Le Baladin
 
Italy
Avail:
Retired (no longer brewed)
Wants
  1
Gots
  3
SCORE
n/a
-
Nöel CaféNöel Café
Notes:
Reviews: 3 | Ratings: 5
Photo of biegaman
4.02/5  rDev +6.3%
look: 4 | smell: 3.75 | taste: 4 | feel: 4.25 | overall: 4.25

It's snowing! Nöel Café has clumps of yeast that flutter like drifting flakes. My careless pour almost ruined the appearance of this otherwise handsome roasted chestnut brown beer (fortunately that sediment settles to the bottom). The surface also saw flurries; it's topped with a bunny hill of white powder.

The influence of the yeast isn't so prevalent in the aroma; Le Baladin typically borrows heavily from the Belgian tradition and, owing to the fact this is also unpasteurized and bottle-conditioned, I was anticipating more fruity esters and spicy phenols from such a dark, high-alcohol (9%) offering.

But no, sir. The name of the game here is coffee (literally, it's part of the beer's name). Sure, there's elements of ginger or nutmeg, as well as nutty, brown sugar laced, Malteser-like maltiness but all these qualities play into and flatter the mildly roasty, rich, almost chocolaty coffee bean flavour.

It's subtle, complex, and delicious. And the reason the coffee tastes so damn good is because the beans used are heritage varietals sourced from sustainable, Slow Food certified growers in Honduras and Guatemala, then roasted by an artisan roaster in Turin. Good quality goes in, good quality comes out.

Nöel Café is a perfect beer to recline and unwind with. Its lightly seasoned, creamy coffee and hazelnut truffle flavours make a mellow after dinner tipple or an ideal breakfast accompaniment to clementines and a big slice of panettone. I bought this as a Christmas gift to myself and boy am I spoiled!

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Photo of craftbeersweden
3.81/5  rDev +0.8%
look: 4 | smell: 3 | taste: 4 | feel: 4 | overall: 4.25

Hazy dark brown beer with a two finger high head.

Nose: Brown sugar, coffee, toffee, milk, chocolate and nuts.
Taste: Sweet caramel mat, brown sugar, toffee, dark fruit and marsipan.
Body: Medium body and soft carbonation. A little bitterness at the end.

Great beer and really tasty!

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Photo of bark
3.84/5  rDev +1.6%
look: 3 | smell: 4 | taste: 3.75 | feel: 4 | overall: 4

The colour is deep deep Chesnut brown, the liquid is clear. The three finger beige head is compact. It sinks slowly leaving no lacing.

The smell is rather sour with some sweet creamy flavours and lots of fine fresh coffee. Some alcohol, milk chocolate and smooth bitterness. Notable flavours of hazelnuts.

The taste is very sweet with some rather simple bitter flavours. Nuts and freshly brewed coffee. It is not as metallic as some coffee-flavoured beers tend to be. Smooth alcohol and a touch of strong wine in the background. Medium body. The alcohol grows in the aftertaste to a hot level. More coffee, hints of orange cocohlate and nougat. The finish is sweet, smooth and elegant with some coffee.

The carbonation is smooth, the many bubbles are small. The liquid is a bit dry.

A very rounded and smooth after dinner beer. But I had expected some more depth in this one.

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Nöel Café from Birrificio Le Baladin
Beer rating: 3.78 out of 5 with 5 ratings