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Delirium Noël | Brouwerij Huyghe

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776 Reviews
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Delirium NoëlDelirium Noël

Brewed by:
Brouwerij Huyghe

Style: Belgian Strong Dark Ale

Alcohol by volume (ABV): 10.00%

Availability: Winter

Notes / Commercial Description:
No notes at this time.

Added by taez555 on 02-03-2002

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Reviews: 776 | Ratings: 1,913
Photo of beergeek279
4.32/5  rDev +11.1%
look: 4 | smell: 4.5 | taste: 4.5 | feel: 4 | overall: 4

Served in the 750 mL bottle. The color is a chocolate brown, with a ring of white head. The smell is very fruity and alcoholic. The taste is slightly sweet, a plumish sweet taste, and well spiced, and the alcohol is barely noticable. Mouthfeel is smooth. As for drinkability, could have a few.

Amongst the most interesting labels I've ever seen, pink elephants with Santa hats pulling a sleigh. The beer is quite interesting as well. Though it's not a world-beater, Noel is certainly a good winter warmer, and a nice treat while getting snowed in.

 550 characters

Photo of francisweizen
4.32/5  rDev +11.1%
look: 4 | smell: 4.5 | taste: 4.5 | feel: 4 | overall: 4

An Excellent X-Mas Seasonal Beer! This poured a nice, refined looking, reddish-brown colour with almost no head to speak of(which is understandable at it's high 10%ABV!:-) This smelled very wine-like and it also reminded me of Chimay blue. That was the taste to me as well, a chimay blue mixed with some nice red wine. This beer had a very wine like mouth feel as well, with some definate oak notes and barrel flavors in the mouth. All this makes for a wonderful if not strong, extremely drinkable beer!
merry x-mas and cheers!

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Photo of purplehops
4.32/5  rDev +11.1%
look: 4 | smell: 4.5 | taste: 4.5 | feel: 4 | overall: 4

Delirium Noel pours a sparkly red-brown with a light tan head that dies quickly into a thin ring. Little or no lace on the sides of the glass. The aroma is christmas stollen with alcohol. Very fruity with notes of plum, fig, apricot, and citrus. The taste begins with a smooth warmth of malty goodness and moves on to spice flavors of coriander and grains of paradise. The finish is a blend of prickly carbonation and dried fruit with hints of hops. Flavors of carmel, orange peel, and an unknown ( simular to a single cask aged rum with vanilla and coconut flavors )swirl around in your mouth forming new flavors with each sip. The aftertaste is lingering alcohol and notes of hops and citrus. The mouthfeel is smooth and warm with a slight syrupiness that in no way detracts from this ale.
All in all another winner from brewey Huyghe. Good by itself or with seasonal treats. In the end the pink elephants say it all.

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Photo of ikats
4.32/5  rDev +11.1%
look: 4 | smell: 4.5 | taste: 4.5 | feel: 4 | overall: 4

Delirium Christmas - 2005 - Lovely dark amber color. Head dissipated quickly - not surprisingly for this strong beer. A bit heavy on the yeast sediment. Aroma is absolutely wonderful - such inviting earthy notes. As soon as the aroma hit my nose, my brain started sending "Gimme! Gimme! Gimme" signals. Taste is almost as powerful, but a bit too strong on alcohol. Nevertheless, it's easy and pleasant to drink.

Wonderful winter brew. I think my bottle could've benefitted from aging. Next time I'll be sure to look for an older bottle. Maybe I'll even pick a fresh one next time I see it, and cellar it for a few years.

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Photo of Daktyls
4.32/5  rDev +11.1%
look: 3.5 | smell: 4 | taste: 4.5 | feel: 4.5 | overall: 4.5

A: Pours a clear, dark, amber color with very little head that dissipates very quickly. In fact, the head pretty much dissipated immediately after I finished pouring.

S: Nose is full of spices with a presence of alcohol as well. Just like one would expect from a Belgian Strong Dark Ale.

T: There's a nice fruity maltiness going on here as well as some of the nutmeg. Definitely a bit on the sweet side as well, but there's also a little bit of bitter as well.

M: Not a whole lot of carbonation, but definitely a full flavored body, the beers character works very well with the smell and taste.

D: Quite drinkable for a high ABV beer, I will absolutely be adding this beer to my seasonal purchase list as it makes a great Christmas beer.

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Photo of BrewMaven
4.33/5  rDev +11.3%
look: 4.5 | smell: 4 | taste: 4.5 | feel: 4 | overall: 4.5

The sole example still sitting on my local bev centers shelf..I just couldn't leave it there!

Pours a pretty, deep, clear reddish amber while building a whopper of a slightly off white head. Head receded to a half inch cover and deposited sporadic lace thereafter.

A nose of fruit, spice and yeast greeted my olfactories and foretold of the treat forthcoming.

Taste was as expected with sweet fruits up front, an ever so slight hint of heat and a mild hint of yeast at the tail end. Mouthfeel was fairly substantial and carbonation was subdued.

Quite a tasty treat to help celebrate kicking Winter in the nads and saying hello to Spring!!

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Photo of prototypic
4.33/5  rDev +11.3%
look: 4.5 | smell: 4 | taste: 4.5 | feel: 4 | overall: 4.5

Delirium Noël is copper in color. It's clear and is nearly a burgundy color with a little light behind it. The cork popped with force and carbonation looks like it will be generated by my Sam Adams glass throughout. The head is light tan and reaches about two fingers deep. It never fully dissipates and leaves a surprisingly sticky lacing on the glass.

The nose is good. It doesn't have quite the BSDA thunder I expected, but it's nice. It's fruity up front. Apple, pear, and a little peach kick it off. It smells just slightly sweet. There's a hint of dark fruit, but not near as much as you might expect. Belgian yeast is very prominent and smells delicious. I certainly like that. Spices are rather subdued, but there are a few hints at their presence. Alcohol is blended very well and is barely noticeable. Good, not quite great.

The flavor really amplifies the interesting qualities of Delirium Noël. Let there be no doubt, this is delicious beer. But, it's a little different. Apple, pear, and peach flavors are noted up front. They give it a slightly sweet flavor. Dark fruit flavors are very subtle and are barely noticeable. Kind of weird, but no less tasty. Spices are also background noise, but complement the fruit flavors well. What's not weird is the ass-kicking Belgian yeast flavor. It's strong and really drives the excellent flavor of this beer. Alcohol is also buried. I'm barely getting any. Very impressive for a 10% beer. It finishes fruity and a little sweet.

Delirium Noël has a (barely) medium body. It's smooth, but is hindered a little by its lack of heft and abundance of bubbles. Carbonation is rather active. Drinkability is very high. This stuff goes down far too damn easy for a 10% beer. It's also incredibly flavorful. This 750 won't last too long.

I'm impressed. Delirium Noël's probably the most interesting BSDA I've ever had. It's a little left of center in that the spices and dark fruit are more subtle and complementary rather than being front and center. Since it's so tasty, I'm okay with that. There's plenty of flavor to make up for whatever shortcomings it may have. What a Christmas beer! Go find a bottle before it disappears until next year.

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Photo of DarkerTheBetter
4.33/5  rDev +11.3%
look: 4.5 | smell: 4 | taste: 4.5 | feel: 4 | overall: 4.5

This beer came a dark red copper with a small head that quickly faded to a ring around the edge of the glass. Smelled of cherries, raspberries and a slight spicy yeast. Tasted of peaches, raspberries, cherries and a sweet wheat malt. Mouth feel with slightly vicious, yet thin. The fruit complexity of this beer was nicely done with low sugars, and a thinner mouth feel. Also, at 10% abv, this was quite an accomplishment.

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Photo of CharlesRiver
4.33/5  rDev +11.3%
look: 4.5 | smell: 4 | taste: 4.5 | feel: 4 | overall: 4.5

This is the first time that I have tried any of this breweries beers. I don't have a Delirium glass so my Rapscallion glass will have to do. The pour is amber in color with a nice off white fluffy head. The spices hit you right up front with a touch of alcohol as well. I also get hints of nutmeg and clove. Big time warming feeling as it goes down. The flavors stay with you long after.

Overall I am very impressed with this beer. Again, another one that I would like to cellar for awhile. Buy one (or five) this holiday season and drink it next holiday season.

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Photo of vandemonian
4.35/5  rDev +11.8%
look: 4 | smell: 4 | taste: 4.5 | feel: 4.5 | overall: 4.5

Delirium Noël has a cloudy dark brown colour and a head that goes away quick but maintains lacing. The smell is sweet and malty with hints of honey. The taste is sweet with hints of honey with a toasty malt finish. There is the tang of belgian yeast at the end. This beer is thick and carbonated, so it felt very nice in my mouth. Three words to describe this beer: yummy; roasty; warm.

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Photo of rdrummer
4.35/5  rDev +11.8%
look: 4.5 | smell: 4.5 | taste: 4.5 | feel: 4 | overall: 4

Noel came in the beautiful bottle and went up from there. It pours a clear brown color with some amber tinge with a considerable brownish head. The lacing is strong but fades fast. It has a malty, fruity aroma with hints of nutmeg, cinnamon, and clove. It also has the distinct aroma of a strong ale with yeasty undertones. I love the taste of this if its served at about 50 degrees. Once it got really cold in the fridge, it lost a lot of the explosion that I got from the warmer brew. Its taste is malty but with hints of many spices. It fades a little in the mouth for a beer with this alcohol content. It packs a wallop so drinkability is good if shortened.

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Photo of VoodooBrew
4.35/5  rDev +11.8%
look: 4.5 | smell: 4.5 | taste: 4.5 | feel: 4 | overall: 4

There seems to be a pattern in my other reviews of Winter/holiday beers in that I don't seem to like them all that much. Well, leave it to the Belgians to buck that trend. Thank you, Belgians!

The aroma announces this brew as distinctly Belgian from the get go, with a fruitiness coupled with mild tart/sour elements. Flavors alternate rapidly and fluidly from spicy, to sweet, to sour, and then bitter. The finish is long and easy. On the whole the easy, refreshing nature of this beer belies its robust alcohol strenght. Highly enjoyable.

 543 characters

Photo of ryantupy
4.35/5  rDev +11.8%
look: 4.5 | smell: 4.5 | taste: 4.5 | feel: 4 | overall: 4

750ml bottle ceramic painted dated on 2006.
This beer poured a very reddish amber color with a nice head that slowly became nothing more than a tiny little lace around the glass with good retention. The smelled sweet and had a bold fruitiness to it. Predominatly malty notes than anything hoppy. It had a nice bold strong taste with alcohol present in every sip. A nice slick slightly fizzy mouthfeel with a very ncie alcohol kick on the way down. Perhaps I should age it this one next time as the alcohol seemed to overwhelm the other flavors and scents.

 556 characters

Photo of BuckeyeNation
4.35/5  rDev +11.8%
look: 4 | smell: 4 | taste: 4.5 | feel: 4.5 | overall: 4.5

2004 edition. Warmly glowing tawny with much more orange than brown. It's hard to tell due to the failing daylight, but I might even see a hint of cranberry. Removing the cork resulted in a rifle shot craaack! followed by a tendril of gunsmoke. It was no surprise, then, that the beer was massively bubbled immediately after the pour. The carbonation has now settled down and the orangish ecru head has settled down with it. Unfortunately, the cap is too soft and too unsticky to give up any lace.

I expected Delirium Noel to be a BSDA, but it isn't. It looks and smells like a cross between a BSPA and a BSDA. The nose is sour fruity (more drunken peaches and apricots than figs and dates), clove spicy and Belgian yeasty. In fact, it shares some characteristics with a farmhouse ale or a saison.

A few mouthfuls are all it takes to tell me that I like Noel more than Nocturnum and less than Tremens. The question is, which one will it share a flavor score with? (4.0 in the first case, 4.5 in the second). Only time and the rest of the bottle will tell.

For some reason, I expected more sweetness. The beer is plenty sweet, but the candi sugar is offset beautifully by sour and bitter. No cloying Christmas confection here. As noted above, the maltiness tastes darker than a strong pale ale and lighter than a strong dark ale. Kudos to Brouwerij Huyghe for giving us the full spectrum when it comes to the pink elephant beers. None of them taste anything like the others.

Rum-macerated apricots, plums and white raisins make up the flavor profile of this wonderfully complex ale. It hasn't taken long to decide which taste score to award. When Belgian yeast is in use, it's difficult to tell if any other spices are present since the yeast itself throws off more than a few interesting and varied flavors. Nothing really jumps out at me, although I wouldn't be surprised to learn that Curacao orange peel has been added.

I'm pleased to see that alcohol isn't a vocal member of the chorus. Of course, more than two years in the bottle might have a lot to do with that. The body/mouthfeel borders on luxurious without quite getting there. It's medium-full with a silky smoothness that is aided by a near perfect amount of bubbles. I didn't mind the initially active mouthfeel and I don't anticipate minding the less than active mouthfeel to come.

I rarely comment on bottles and labels, but I love the ceramic-like painted bottles that this brewery uses. In addition, the label (with three pink elephants pulling Santa's sleigh while wearing Santa hats and candy striped scarves) is one of the best I've ever seen for a Christmas beer.

Delirium Noel, while not quite the equal of Delirium Tremens, is a tremendous beer in its own right. Even if it doesn't fit easily into any one particular style, it delivers the goods like the Jolly Old Elf himself. I wish that I had had the opportunity to enjoy this bottle on December 25th. I'll be sure to keep that in mind for next year.

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Photo of ummswimmin
4.35/5  rDev +11.8%
look: 4 | smell: 4 | taste: 4.5 | feel: 4.5 | overall: 4.5

I poured this into a tulip to enjoy the smell over the whole bottle. I am rewarded with raisins, sour, and seasoning for the holidays.

This is a good looking dark. You get a ton of foam; that retains down to about one finger. You get the darker brown coloring.

This a very good tasting beer. It is rich tasting. You get all those dark fruit flavors. I really enjoy the strong flavors.

This is a great beer. I recommend picking up a bottle before the season is out. This brewery is amazing. Another great example from Belgium.

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Photo of dragonWhale
4.36/5  rDev +12.1%
look: 2.5 | smell: 4 | taste: 4.5 | feel: 4.5 | overall: 5

It's official. The cellar cleanse has begun. Popped this bottle, which I thought was an 09. Oh hoh! Indeed, it was a 2008. Well there you go.
Marooned in my glass are the shards of yeast cake spinning ominously. I will poop well tomorrow. Raisiny, with plums, some prickly spice aroma.
I remember this being sweeter, the time mellowing in the bottle has done this beer well. It's incredibly balanced and very sippable. Raisins are big in the flavor, plums, apples and spice. A bit of texture to it. Chewy yeast particles. Yum.

Aged very well, I prefer it to the fresh. Recommended for cellaring. Would love to see it with another 2 years on it.

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Photo of chadspivey
4.37/5  rDev +12.3%
look: 4 | smell: 4.5 | taste: 4.5 | feel: 3.5 | overall: 4.5

Got a half pint at the ginger man here in austin

A: orange glow to this one. kind of hazy orangish, yellow. Not much head, but I figure it was poured so that I'd get the most beer for my dollars.

S: Beautiful smell. Smells like a tripel, plums, citrus fruits, hints of vanilla, very nice. Reminds me of tripel karmeliet.

T: Now that's a nice belguim brew. Can taste apples along with all the things listed in the smell. Apples more than any other fruit, then comes plums.

M: a little thinner than I expected. Still smooth and nice, just not that thicker, creamy mouthfeel I love. Still somehow seems to work very well for the beer.

D: i JUST looked up at the alcohol percentage. WOW, it sure didn't taste like 10 percent. I could drink this all night long.... And then another when I wake up.

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Photo of BretSikkink
4.37/5  rDev +12.3%
look: 4 | smell: 4.5 | taste: 4.5 | feel: 4.5 | overall: 4

Disclaimer: I had a huge review all written out, my computer died unexpectedly and I don't have the patience to go back through all the characteristics; suffice it to say I absolutely adore this beer, I think it is criminally slept on, and for those who are unafraid of a little funk in their drunk will love it too.

To my palate, it combines the dark fruitiness and heavy chocolate malt presence of a quad with the soaring tartness of a little lambic blend. I think it compares very closely to the Three Philosophers, and favorably to that beer IMO. If the beer gods are smiling, I will be back to this one, and re-review it properly.

Highly recommended, just not to everyone. The more unexpected the flavor is, I'm afraid the less likely it is to agree with you.

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Photo of webbcreative
4.37/5  rDev +12.3%
look: 4 | smell: 4.5 | taste: 4.5 | feel: 4.5 | overall: 4

Poured cloudy orange color with white miniml head fir a Belgian. Aroma has the Belgian yeast smell I expected, and dark fruits as well. Taste is a wonderful assortment of dark fruits from raisin and plum and fig, get candied sugar as well, but what I don't get is the 10. Abv which is astounding. Mouthfeel us medium and a but creamy actually. Great beer. This might be my new holiday brew to have every year at christmas.

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Photo of BamaBeerBuff
4.37/5  rDev +12.3%
look: 4 | smell: 4.5 | taste: 4 | feel: 4.5 | overall: 5

On tap at the Brickstore Pub on 12/6/08. Served in a DT tulip.

A: It's a generally bright crimson-brown color with a thick, creamy head. Recent is decent and it lays down some nice sheets of lace on the glass.

S: Nose is strongly fruity with a hint of spice. Sweeter, but with enough spice/kick to balance things out.

T: The taste is definitely fruity, but not as sweet as I would've expected, given the smell. Yeasty spice flavor is more prevalent in the taste, with a hint of fruitiness akin to berries. Body is medium-full with a nice, brisk carbonation that is on par for the Belgian style.

D: For a 10% beer, this one goes down really easily. Almost zero alcohol flavor and a lighter body. I really enjoyed this beer and will definitely look for it again next winter.

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Photo of Brewdacris
4.38/5  rDev +12.6%
look: 4.5 | smell: 4 | taste: 4.5 | feel: 4.5 | overall: 4.5

I have long awaited purchasing Delirium Noel as my favorite beer is Delirium Nocturnum. It finally arrived at my local beer store today so I got myself a couple bottles of it to sample.

A- The Noel has an exceptional crimson color with an unexpectedly large and rocky 3 finger off-white head.

S- At first sniff, I got a weird vomit-like smell. However, on my second go at it I noticed a much fruitier smell. More complex notes came through including dark fruits like plums and cherries. There is a sweet malt scent to it as well.

T- Sweet and sour fruit against a malty backdrop. Tasty explosion in your mouth, well matched flavors perfectly compliment each other, excellent combination. This is a beer that truly got better with every sip.

M- Silky mouthfeel like that of the Nocturnum. Perfect for the flavor and carbonation.

This beer has earned its status as a Delirium and is a beer I would enjoy on any occasion. I would especially recommend this to anyone who appreciates Delirium's other offerings.

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Photo of NittanyBeerFan
4.38/5  rDev +12.6%
look: 5 | smell: 4.5 | taste: 4.5 | feel: 4 | overall: 4

A: Pours a deep rich chestnut with about 1 cm of head into a tulip glass. Head dissipates fairly quickly, but the beer laces very nicely.

S: caramelized sugars, roasted malts, and dark fruits, maybe dates. Heavy use of spices is also evident.

T: sugars come through with the malts up front. Mid-palate, the taste swings towards yeasty spices and fruity esters. Finishes with a lingering flavor or toffee and slight warming alcohol.

M/D: Medium to high carbonation with a medium body and smooth finish. I would try drinking this out of a wider-mouth glass to see if it would change the character at all if some of that carbonation escaped a bit more effectively.

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Photo of LibraryTom
4.38/5  rDev +12.6%
look: 4.5 | smell: 4 | taste: 4.5 | feel: 4.5 | overall: 4.5

Spicy amber with lots of rich malt, in a brew with extremely clear malt. Easy drinking, especially for the style. Only a slight touch of the yeast associated with the Tremens, but the fruit flavors are there. There almost seems to be a bit or sourness on the finish though.. I am wondering if this is intentional.

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Photo of Duhast500
4.38/5  rDev +12.6%
look: 4.5 | smell: 4 | taste: 4.5 | feel: 4.5 | overall: 4.5

Even though this is a Belgian beer I had this beer at American Craft on Dec. 1, 2011

Poured from the tap into a Delirium snifter.

The color is clear maroon with a finger and a half of foamy white head and some slight lacing left on the glass.

The aroma is of dark fruit. There is some slight fig, and plum aroma in the nose that is sweet a bit.

The taste is has some nice cherry flavor that is mixed with a slight raspberry flavor and some sickly sweet malt flavor. There is a slight bitterness that comes out toward the end that makes a slight balance to the flavor.

The feel of this beer is so smooth it feels like silk on the tongue and goes down so easy that it is barely putting any kind of aftertaste in the back of the throat.

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Photo of jahred
4.38/5  rDev +12.6%
look: 4 | smell: 3.5 | taste: 5 | feel: 5 | overall: 4

Tried this at a winter beer night tasting... The color is light brown, with a nice thick lace that remained on my glass after consumption. The scent is of light hops, which did not really prepare me for what I was about to taste.

The best description of the taste of this beer at first is ... eggnog. A beer-version of the classic holiday drink. Yum. It's incredibly thick and hoppy (but not bitter). There's orange and honey and vanilla and raisin and caramel notes. Wow. Amazing. I'll be buying a lot more of this stuff next winter.

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Delirium Noël from Brouwerij Huyghe
3.89 out of 5 based on 1,913 ratings.
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