Noël | Birrificio Le Baladin

BA SCORE
87
very good
127 Ratings
THE BROS
82
good
Read the review
NoëlNoël
BEER INFO

Brewed by:
Birrificio Le Baladin
Italy
birreria.com

Style: Belgian Strong Dark Ale

Alcohol by volume (ABV): 9.00%

Availability: Year-round

Notes / Commercial Description:
No notes at this time.

Added by SixpointJMH on 12-28-2003

BEER STATS
Ratings:
127
Reviews:
75
Avg:
3.9
pDev:
12.82%
 
 
Wants:
7
Gots:
17
For Trade:
0
User Ratings & Reviews
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Ratings: 127 |  Reviews: 75
Photo of Stoutsman
1/5  rDev -74.4%

Photo of Goldorak
2.38/5  rDev -39%
look: 3 | smell: 2.5 | taste: 2.5 | feel: 2 | overall: 2

Appearance: Cola brownish with a few crimson tinges, the ring of lace was short-lived.

Smell: Quite vinious, in a very tannic, plonk red wine kind of way, with plenty of alcohol and a wheaty finish.

Taste: It just tastes like melted ice cubes, like when you thaw out something that's been sitting in the freezer for years, it had a freezer burn flavor. Was this bottle frozen? There is a lingering rafined sugar sweetness in there, but I just found it to be watery, bland, and quite dissapointing.

 503 characters

Photo of GrindFatherBob
2.5/5  rDev -35.9%

Photo of morebeergood
2.62/5  rDev -32.8%
look: 2.5 | smell: 3 | taste: 2.5 | feel: 2.5 | overall: 2.5

Got a bottle for Christmas (thanks joshman). Poured into two belgian style goblets. First thing you see is my nemesis: yeast floaties. I cannot stand these in a beer. The smell was average, mostly just malt, with maybe just a hint of candied sugar. The taste was very weak, not much flavor to speak of, and the body was very thin in consistency. This was my first belgian style beer from Italy, and I can see why many don't come out of that country. Glad this was a gift!

 471 characters

Photo of kylehay2004
3/5  rDev -23.1%

Photo of brystmar
3.13/5  rDev -19.7%
look: 4 | smell: 3.5 | taste: 3 | feel: 2.5 | overall: 3

A: dark brown and fizzy. One full finger of off-white head with OK retention. Sticky lace.

S: smells like a Belgian dubbel with some winter spices thrown in, though they are fairly faint. Shame.

T: really malty with some dark fruit, spices are subtle and show up at the end. Compared to other winter ales I've had, this one is fairly tame. Not bad, but not special or impressively complex.

M/D: too fizzy for my liking. Strongly reminds me of Coke. And if the feel isn't good, the drinkability isn't gonna be there either. I *really* enjoyed Super Baladin and had high hopes for this brew; still looking forward to Nora.

 623 characters

Photo of JamFuel
3.18/5  rDev -18.5%
look: 3.5 | smell: 3 | taste: 3.25 | feel: 3 | overall: 3.25

Pours a reddish brown color, kinda murky. Not very pretty beer at all.

Smell is pretty much as expected, lots of plums and raisins, and a bit of bread.

Sweet taste, once again with plums and raisins, aftertaste is a bit nutty.

Pretty light bodied, considering the ABV.

This was kinda underwhelming, considering the style and ABV. It was easier to drink than I thought, but it wasn't very complex.

 401 characters

Photo of MilanoItaly
3.23/5  rDev -17.2%
look: 4 | smell: 3.5 | taste: 3.5 | feel: 3.5 | overall: 2

Starting my career as beer taster ;-) , I'm afraid this one came too early because of its complexity.
My sensation is in becoming,what I'm sure of this beer for now is the following.
Mahogany dark colour with a creamy foam and intriguing rings left on glass.
Uneasy to drink due to alcohol accents, not referring to the 9 ABV : I had it with meat (shin) in a winter cold day and still had my hard time to finish it.
It has so much tastes in it,I was wondering if I was drinking a beer after all.Coffee accents anyway amongst all.

 530 characters

Photo of lmaduells
3.25/5  rDev -16.7%

Photo of nick76
3.26/5  rDev -16.4%
look: 4 | smell: 3 | taste: 3.5 | feel: 2 | overall: 3.5

The aroma is sweet and yeasty with some chocolate. The appearance is brown with a large head. The flavor is like the aroma with plenty of alcohol for a 9%. The palate is thin. Overall it's pretty good but not that impressive. These beers have nice bottles but that just leads to frustration with the beer.

 305 characters

Photo of drabmuh
3.33/5  rDev -14.6%
look: 3.5 | smell: 3 | taste: 3.5 | feel: 3 | overall: 3.5

Beer on tap at Churchkey, beer is brown and mostly clear but no head, low carbonation, no lacing.

Aroma is a little weak, mild spice, some malt, some yeast / breadiness.

Beer is about as thin as a beer can get. I forget I'm drinking while I'm drinking it. Odd, very odd, minimal flavors too, just too watery for me. Decent finish though. I won't have it again.

 362 characters

Photo of ricke
3.38/5  rDev -13.3%
look: 4 | smell: 3.5 | taste: 3 | feel: 4 | overall: 3.5

A: Dark brown with a pale beige head. Some lacings.

S: Dark malts, ripe fruits, powdered cocoa, mild spices, caramel and hints of plastic phenols.

T: The taste is sweet with notes of caramel malts, ripe fruits, spices and sweet alcohol. The finish is mildly bitter with notes of spicy alcohol and herbal hops. The taste is not as big as the smell had me to believe. Slightly unbalanced due to too the alcohol being too powerful.

M: Medium body, smooth mouthfeel.

D: A good beer, but it lacks a little complexity and the alcohol is too prominent. Also, it felt like it developed poorly in the glass.

 603 characters

Photo of ianjsullivan
3.47/5  rDev -11%
look: 3.75 | smell: 3.5 | taste: 3.5 | feel: 3.5 | overall: 3.25

Photo of hopdog
3.48/5  rDev -10.8%
look: 4 | smell: 3.5 | taste: 3.5 | feel: 3 | overall: 3.5

One of those bowling pin looking bottles.

Poured a dark brown color with an averaged sized off white head. Aromas of bread, light spices, licorice and some dark fruits. Tastes from dark fruits, chocolate, lighter spices and lighter bread.

Notes from 12/25/04

 260 characters

Photo of Jason
3.5/5  rDev -10.3%

Photo of jaydoc
3.5/5  rDev -10.3%

Photo of Thorpe429
3.5/5  rDev -10.3%
look: 3.5 | smell: 3.5 | taste: 3.5 | feel: 3.5 | overall: 3.5

On tap at Churchkey. Served in a snifter.

Pours a moderate brown color with just a touch of a reddish hue. A bit of head and lacing, but not as much as I'd expect for the style. The nose carries a good bit of Belgian yeast plus a light touch of spice. Nothing too complex or interesting, though it's fairly well done. Flavor is about the same. Not really much of a noel beer. Medium body and good carbonation. Not bad, but not something that I would seek out again.

 466 characters

Photo of jjayjaye
3.5/5  rDev -10.3%
look: 3.5 | smell: 3.5 | taste: 3.5 | feel: 3.5 | overall: 3.5

Pours a translucent dark brown with reddish hues and a loose shallow light tan head that fades quickly to spotty patterns of Belgian lacing. The smell is really sweet of grape, fig and plums that carries directly over into the flavor. The mouth feel is light bodied with a slight tangy character from the 9% alcohol. The fruitiness lingers well after the swallow. A reasonable drinker.

 385 characters

Photo of KAF
3.5/5  rDev -10.3%

Photo of imperialking
3.5/5  rDev -10.3%

Photo of scruffwhor
3.51/5  rDev -10%
look: 3.5 | smell: 2.5 | taste: 4 | feel: 3 | overall: 4

Pours a very deep brown, almost black Belgian hue. Can't see any bubbling in thid deep hue'd beer. The aroma is aof light Belgian spice and Belgian hops with an exotic flair. A hint of good ol' fashioned American stout lie qualities. Pretty unique smells and tastes. Just a bit too muted for my overall tatse. Hints of brown sugar caramelized currants, and burnt apples. Makes for a guido take on a Belgian classic.

 415 characters

Photo of Phyl21ca
3.53/5  rDev -9.5%
look: 4 | smell: 3.5 | taste: 3.5 | feel: 3.5 | overall: 3.5

Bottle: Poured a deep clear ruby color ale with a large off-white foamy head with good retention and good lacing. Aroma of sweet malt with light dry fruits and fruity ester is quite enjoyable. Taste is a well balanced mix between some caramel Belgian malt with balanced sweetness, dry fruits and light fruity ester in the finish. Body is about average with good carbonation with no signs of alcohol. Well done but additional body and spices could have benefited this beer.

 472 characters

Photo of Ochsenblut
3.54/5  rDev -9.2%
look: 3 | smell: 4 | taste: 3.5 | feel: 3 | overall: 3.5

Dated Nov 2010, this bottle is a little overdue. But considering the alcohol content and the storage condition, I think the review will be a fair one.

This beer is dark brown with a slight red hue. The head is khaki and subsides almost instantly, leaving a soda-like appearance.

Raisin, prune and what can only be described as freshly opened panettone (Italian fruitcake) pervade the senses. The taste is upfront and sweet. Its loaded with brown sugar notes, more raisin and tobacco. The alcohol is pretty well hidden and compliments the lingering tobacco taste. There is no hops presence to speak of, just malty sweetness. The aftertaste fades quickly to leave only a very faint reminder on the palate.

The malt profile is chewy and relatively thick, but the suspended carbonation makes it seem soda-like. This Christmas beer would have really benefited from lower carbonation.

Strictly speaking, Baladin Noel is an above average Christmas beer. It has most of the flavors closely associated with the season and the substantial body to carry them without feeling overwhelming. But as far as Yule-tide ales go, this one is lacks complexity and physical prowess. Finishing the bottle was easy, but I'm reticent to grab another.

 1,232 characters

Photo of mexikrainian
3.56/5  rDev -8.7%
look: 3 | smell: 4.5 | taste: 3 | feel: 4 | overall: 3.5

Served in a Petrus long-stem chalice.

Aroma: sweet, malty with aroma of caramel, honey, raisins and spices.

Appearance: murky, dark amber with shallow, off-white head

Taste: acidic, slightly sour notes on the tongue initially. malty and and sweet on the finish.

Mouthfeel: medium body and unbalanced with medium carbonation

Overall Impression: not my favorite beer. too expensive for the quality.

 402 characters

Photo of Bierman9
3.56/5  rDev -8.7%
look: 4.5 | smell: 3.5 | taste: 3.5 | feel: 3.5 | overall: 3.5

Part 2 of my Christmas Eve day spree of big Noel biers.... from a 750ml bottle... no freshness dating found.

Pours a deep mahogany hue, with tinges of garnet shining through. Steady carbo rising within, heading towards a healthy, finely bubbled, creamy tan head of about 1". Topping has good staying power, and laces the glass well. Nose has some fruit notes as well as some suggestions of cola. Body is a bit less than medium, feeling quite light and airy on the tongue, with a foamy, bubbly feel similar to some Hefeweizens.

Flavor has a touch of sweetness that tags along with some mild, dark fruit characteristics. Subtle hints of chocolate make an appearance. Extremely dry throughout, with a bit of a floral hoppiness making a cameo. Has an earthy aspect to it, with hints and afterthoughts of spiciness. Nothing, though, really jumps out and takes command.... lots of background flavors without a leading actor here... I scored this at the BA Belgian Bier Fest, and am somewhat pleased I didn't have to shell out coin for it.

Prosit!!

overall: 3.7
appearance: 4.5 | smell: 3.5 | taste: 3.5 | mouthfeel: 3.5 | drinkability: 3.5

953

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Noël from Birrificio Le Baladin
3.9 out of 5 based on 127 ratings.
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