Delirium Nocturnum
Brouwerij Huyghe

Delirium NocturnumDelirium Nocturnum
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Strong Ale - Belgian Dark
Ranked #34
Ranked #5,518
4.05 | pDev: 12.35%
Brouwerij Huyghe
Delirium NocturnumDelirium Nocturnum
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Reviews: 988 | Ratings: 3,022 | Log in to view all ratings and sort
Reviews by the Alström Bros:
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BeerAdvocate from Massachusetts

4.39/5  rDev +8.4%
look: 3.5 | smell: 4.5 | taste: 4.5 | feel: 4 | overall: 4.5

Presentation: 750ml champagne-style bomber with a coating that looks like ceramic. Cute pink elephant with some trippy colours surrounding it lets you know that your ass is going to be dead, soon. No bottled on info. Blue foil seal with cork and crown.

Appearance: Hazy deep ruby red with a tan creamy, patchy lace -- one gentle swirl and it creams up again.

Smell: Medicinal/light solvent, tart apple, faint caramel, raw sugar, alcohol (swirl and give it a good whiff) and earthy / yeast aromas.

Taste: Kinda smooth and very creamy on the palate, light pear texture. Medium-bodied. Medicinal, dominant apple (slightly tart), herbal, yeast ... then the malts settle in on the palate with a smooth chocolate / caramel flavour that turns dry soon after. No predominant hop bitterness. Vague spices. Warming spicy alcohol character hits the head after a few decent sips.

Notes: Welcome to Belgian beers! Lovely combination of malts and complex tartness. A surprise lurks around every taste bud with this beer. Amazing how such a beer can go from sweet to mildly tart to dry.

Jun 23, 2002
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Jason from Massachusetts

4.05/5  rDev 0%
look: 4 | smell: 4 | taste: 4 | feel: 4.5 | overall: 4

Inviting dark colour with good lacing, big fruity and alcoholic aroma. Smooth and creamy on the palate with a mellow up front sweetness, mild apple like tartness and a mix of medicinal herb, spicy alcohol and slight grain in the dry finish. This is one Belgian that I'll be going back to for sure.

Jun 24, 2002
More User Reviews:
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Gajo74 from New York

4.28/5  rDev +5.7%
look: 4.25 | smell: 4.25 | taste: 4.25 | feel: 4.5 | overall: 4.25

I've had delirium tremendous several times, and surprisingly have not had its dark counterpart until now. Here goes:
Pours a brown/mahogany color with a hugely dense off white foamy head. That's the conundrum with some Belgians; the head is beautiful to look at, but, its torture waiting for it to settle somewhat so that you can get in that first sip. After what seemed a lifetime, the head began to dissapates and retained as a thick creamy and sudsy foam and lots of lacing dripping down the side of the glass.
The nose is interesting. Initially there is a orange peel zest. This is followed by dark fruit, chocolate malt and an interesting herbal spiciness that somehow reminds me of potatoes seasoned with garlic. Towards the end I start picking up a distinct pear aroma.
In the mouthfeel, there is initially a piercing carbonation that lightens the body. There is a faint cocoa sweetness in the background that is balanced by a mild hops bitterness. There are dark fruits such as raisins and plums, as well as some pear towards the end. There is even some mild tartness. Furthermore there is a peppery spiciness that is moderate and adds to the complexity. I love it how these flavors really open up as the drink warms and the carbonation settles. By this point the mouthfeel becomes soft, smooth and even creamy.
I really liked this one and perhaps like it better than delirium tremendous. A great example of the style.

Mar 18, 2017
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Rivoire from France

3.45/5  rDev -14.8%
look: 3.25 | smell: 2.5 | taste: 3.75 | feel: 4 | overall: 3.75

Not really a big fan of dark beers but I liked the mouthfeel who stays a long time!

Apr 01, 2015
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Brewdacris from Alabama

4.85/5  rDev +19.8%
look: 4.5 | smell: 4.5 | taste: 5 | feel: 5 | overall: 5

After sampling Delirium Noel for the first time last night, I couldn't get the thought of a delicious Nocturnum out of my head. Although the Noel is an amazing beer in its own regard, the taste kept bringing me back to memories of the Nocturnum. This is my all-time favorite beer and I figured it was high time I reviewed it.

A- An inviting dark red when you look at it under light but otherwise opaque. The color is very fitting for the style and taste. Tan two finger head that dissipates after a few minutes to leave a nice lace on top.

S- The aroma definitely is dominantly apple, a somewhat sour but pleasant smell combined with what appears to be a sugary aroma. Very complex smell with a tingly alcoholic backdrop.

T&M- Absolutely fantastic. One sip reminds me why this is my favorite beer, and it only gets better from there. The Nocturnum feels incredibly silky on the tongue, a perfectly thick-but-not-syrupy consistency that definitely compliments the rollercoaster of flavors. The first thing to hit the buds is apple apple apple. Tart but not too much so, perfectly complimenting the following chocolate/caramel flavoring. This subsides very soon after leaving a dry but pleasant aftertaste. The alcohol reminds you that it's there in the form of a pleasant warm feeling in your stomach as well as a slight spice in the aftertaste. Amazing.

After sampling this beer, I have once again reassured myself that it is indeed my favorite. I couldn't bring myself to rate the Nocturnum as anything less than perfect and I have no reason to as I've never enjoyed anything more. Among the most complex of beers I've encountered but perfect in every aspect. I would be hard-pressed to find a beer that I would hold in as high regard as the Nocturnum. Truly world class among world class brews.

Dec 10, 2011
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RoyalT from Michigan

3.63/5  rDev -10.4%
look: 4.5 | smell: 4 | taste: 3.5 | feel: 4 | overall: 3

Appearance – Careful, this one will overflow in a heartbeat. I caught it early so I’m no worse the wear, but the head on this ale is magnificent. It’s big, beautiful, darkly-shaded, slow to go down, and leaves a nice lacing on the glass.

Smell – The dark malt aroma is complimented by very ripe, dark fruits. If I had to pick the most prominent, I guess I would say plum and tobacco. However, this aroma is very complex. It is slightly spoiled by a rather strong harshness of alcohol.

Taste – There’s some table sugar that comes out in the taste. Otherwise, it’s pretty much what you get from the nose. Again, the stingy alcohol reminds one more of cheap whiskey than ale.

Mouthfeel – I like the carbonation in this one, and the body is very full.

Drinkability – This one lacks the smoothness of a fine, mature, BSDA. Most all the ingredients seem to be there, they just need an experienced hand in getting them all together.

Sep 13, 2003
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PathofChaos from Maryland

4.44/5  rDev +9.6%
look: 3.75 | smell: 4 | taste: 5 | feel: 4 | overall: 4.25

Burnished copper with a light, sandy, brown sugar head. It gives the foam equivalent of a haughty warrior puffing out his chest and clanging his buckler, coarse and blustery and completely in the way of what I actually want to see: the beer. Give it a few minutes to drop the ostentatious showmanship and when the posturing foam fizzles down, it becomes dignified.

A distant memory of sweet cherries, a dash of orange zest and a secretive blip of Belgian candi hidden behind them.

Slender and slippery with a brief bloom of carbonation. Has a warming, tart funk finish that’s subtle enough to be appreciable. As it transitions from cold to chilled, its character amplifies.

Roasted plantains, Belgian yeast, and thin smudge of cherry jam wrapped up in a soft slice of German dark wheat bread. Has a sticky-sweet finale, garnished by deeply roasted malts and the barest pinch of baking spices.

Jul 31, 2020
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yelterdow from New Jersey

3.32/5  rDev -18%
look: 3.5 | smell: 4 | taste: 3 | feel: 3.5 | overall: 3

Purchased from Total Wine as soon it became availble for 2007... the back label is notched at the 3 and 7, this is a 330ml bottle. Served at cellar temprature in an oversize snifter on 1/18/08.

Appearance- Deep caramel red, this is a nice looking beer on the pour. The deep beige two-finger head is infused with a reddish hue, and it lingers for about three minutes before settling to a thin film.

Smell- Wonderfully spicy and lush, the nose is inundated right from the start. I'm not sure what these aromas are, but they remind me of something I may have cooked with in the past... it smells like a beer I would have liked to have had on hand for this past Thanksgiving... sort of a cross between a saison and winter warmer. There's even an incense quality here, with big perfumes and oils coming through. Unique as hell, I haven't even tasted this yet.

Taste- Huge malts right away... deep and savory. Although this beer has something of interest to connote, it is unfortunately blocked and cross-checked by a bullying alcohol factor. Suggestions of sweet, dark fruit peek through the

Mouthfeel/Drinkability- Smooth, slick, and creamy for most of the tasting... then later it becomes gassier and more expansive in the mouth. Overall a bit of an uneven ride, and definitely not a memorable sampling.

Jan 19, 2008
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twax from Florida

4.25/5  rDev +4.9%

May 27, 2013
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curlybird from Pennsylvania

4.05/5  rDev 0%
look: 3.75 | smell: 4.25 | taste: 4 | feel: 4 | overall: 4

Jan 22, 2015
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Jesstyr from District of Columbia

4.12/5  rDev +1.7%
look: 4 | smell: 4.5 | taste: 4 | feel: 4 | overall: 4

Finally got to give this one a try after buying a bottle at Publick House in Brookline. Served in a McChouffe chalice.

Pours a hazy brown with reddish hue. Massive brownish head, that measures more than 2 fingers in this chalice - and the big head lingers nicely throughout the drink. Nose was very enjoyable - deep brown sugar, light dark fruit, and a bit of caramel.

Taste was quite enjoyable, full bodied with strong brown sugar and caramel with a deep malty character. Light spiciness that lingers in a very subtle, but enjoyable bitterness. Warms on the way down with a bit of alcohol that carries through. The smoothness makes this quite drinkable.

Mar 02, 2010
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UnoMasBelgian from California

4.75/5  rDev +17.3%

Dec 20, 2012
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AndAShotAJameson from New Jersey

5/5  rDev +23.5%

Dec 21, 2011
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SkinniePost from Wisconsin

4/5  rDev -1.2%

Apr 05, 2014
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VTBrewHound from Vermont

5/5  rDev +23.5%

Mar 03, 2014
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dsherv from New Jersey

3.5/5  rDev -13.6%

Oct 06, 2013
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Corson from Canada (AB)

4/5  rDev -1.2%

Aug 24, 2014
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Jason_cs from Florida

3.9/5  rDev -3.7%
look: 4 | smell: 4 | taste: 3.75 | feel: 4 | overall: 4

May 08, 2015
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CRJMellor from Arkansas

4.18/5  rDev +3.2%
look: 4.5 | smell: 4 | taste: 4 | feel: 4.5 | overall: 4.5

Pours a deep, deep ruby and maroon color with a four-fingered off-white head that tries to escape the Delirium tulip. Head fades away slowly leaving a billowy lace on the glass.
Aroma of drak fruits, cough medicine, grain, spic, orange peel and hint of alcohol. Classic Belgian complexity to me.
Flavor of dark, dark fruits - prunes or raisins, coriander, biscuit and some citrus twang.
Mouthfeel is beautifully alive on the tongue. Sweet and full upfront with a nice transition to spicy and dry alcoholic finish.
Drinkability is superior but powerful alcohol and flavor would make hard to session.

Feb 12, 2004
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BeerSox from Virginia

4.04/5  rDev -0.2%
look: 3.5 | smell: 4.5 | taste: 4 | feel: 3.5 | overall: 4

11.2 oz bottle into snifter.

Very deep raspberry red, which is nearly opaque. Tan creamy head that settles to a thick fizzy cap. Stringy lacing.

Sweet aromas with cherry, raspberry, and apple. Some grainy malt in the base. The alcohol is well hidden.

Sweet n' tart flavors, starting out with mild pear switching to husky malt and some drying alcohol. A hint phenolic flavors are there. Some hop bitterness is present toward the end. Medium bodied with a good amount of carbonation.

A good dark ale. Interesting complex beer inside of an interesting bottle. Recommended.

Dec 06, 2006
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sparx1100 from Minnesota

4/5  rDev -1.2%

Jan 09, 2013
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OriolesFan1008 from Maryland

4.5/5  rDev +11.1%

Jan 25, 2013
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tenacioustomato from Rhode Island

4/5  rDev -1.2%

Mar 22, 2012
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andrewmonks from North Carolina

4.5/5  rDev +11.1%

Dec 24, 2011
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RefillMyglass from Canada (ON)

4.67/5  rDev +15.3%
look: 4 | smell: 4.5 | taste: 4.75 | feel: 5 | overall: 4.75

Apr 27, 2018
Delirium Nocturnum from Brouwerij Huyghe
Beer rating: 90 out of 100 with 3022 ratings