Delirium Noël | Brouwerij Huyghe

very good
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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: 788 | Ratings: 1,948
Photo of froghop
3.48/5  rDev -10.3%
look: 4 | smell: 3.5 | taste: 3.5 | feel: 3 | overall: 3.5

pours a hazy dark orange with a large light beige foamy head, heavy carbonation, and a very good lacing.

smell is of caramel, dark fruits, spice, and roasted nuts and malts.

taste is thick, very carbonation, burnt caramel, roasted malt, dark fruits, white pepper, and spice, ends somewhat bitter and with a definite alcohol warming.

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Photo of ThreeWiseMen
3.48/5  rDev -10.3%
look: 4.5 | smell: 4 | taste: 3.5 | feel: 2.5 | overall: 3

Purchased by Wiseman Pete and split between Nick, Pete, and Jorge. Poured into a snifter and two goblets.

Appearance: Pours a very cloudy, very dark amber with hints of ruby when held to light. Looks gold around the edges. Head is creamy and khaki-colored, and retains pretty well. Looks sticky too - leaves spotty lacing. Lots of large, yeast sediment floating around in the body. Pete just found a strawberry skin in his. WTF? P: 4.5; J: 4.5; N: 4.5

Smell: Strawberries, green apples, figs, and clove. Lots of fruity esters. P: 4.5; J: 4.0; N: 3.5

Taste: Strawberries, figs, doughy malts, clove, cinnamon, and sour yeast. Heavy on the fruity esters again. A pretty dry, alcoholic finish. P: 4.0; J: 3.5; N: 3.5

Mouthfeel: A bit syrupy, thin, and flat. Some chewiness and mouth-numbing, but overall disappointing. P: 3.0; J: 3.0; N: 2.0

Drinkability: Good thing we split this three ways. neither one of us was really thrilled by it, and it got boring pretty quick. Alcohol hits you pretty fast and hard, and the flavor and body just seem to be lacking. P: 3.5; J: 3.0; N: 2.5

Peter: A- (4.05)
Nick: B- (3.45)
Jorge: B (3.7)

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Photo of Jaynuze
3.48/5  rDev -10.3%
look: 4 | smell: 3.5 | taste: 3.5 | feel: 3 | overall: 3.5

Pours dark amber brown with a nice thin white head from the 750 ml bottle with little sign of carbonation.

The nose has notes of malt and alcohol with very little "winter spice" notes.

The taste is quite misleading as one would expect a dark winter beer to be much more rich and spicy in flavor, however Noel smacks one's palate with a nice malty-sweet finish. Almost a little too much for me, but after the first few sips, its flavor rounds out.

The mouthfeel is smooth, however little carbonation was detected or seen.

A nice beer to sip with friends. Though the malty-sweetness was a bit much for me at first, as I mentioned, it rounds out nicely. I like it, but would prefer something with a little bit more spice to it for a winter ale.

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Photo of kiddynamite920
3.48/5  rDev -10.3%
look: 3.5 | smell: 3 | taste: 3.5 | feel: 3.5 | overall: 4

A: Pours a dark amber, close to brown. White frothy head that goes away quite quickly.

S: For some reason I get a big apple juice aroma from this beer. Bready malts and some spice. Just overly sweet and lacking any hop character.

T: Malty and yeasty, some winter spices. This beer dances on the line of cloyingly sweet. The Belgian yeast is pronounced, yet has no bitterness to counteract it.

M: Smooth mouthfeel and a good carbonation bite make this beer just under cloying. Body is fairly light for a beer of this abv.

D: One thing that I don't recognize in tasting this beer is the high alcohol content. Very dangerous beer indeed, yet with its price tag...not so much. Easy sipping beer on a cold night approaching the holidays. Not sure I will be splurging to grab more of these though.

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Photo of MarkoNm
3.47/5  rDev -10.6%
look: 4 | smell: 3.25 | taste: 3.25 | feel: 4 | overall: 3.75

A strong tasting beer, no surprise here. Bittery, quite some alcohol present, sligthly yeasty (a bit too much for my taste). Nice aftertaste, on the sweet / fruity side.
A surprisingly neutral aroma, just some hops and a bit of alcohol aroma.
Pours a clear dark coppery color with a healthy white head, solid and lasts for some time.
A very decent christmas beer, but I will stick to others instead.

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Photo of Daniellobo
3.47/5  rDev -10.6%
look: 3 | smell: 3.5 | taste: 3.5 | feel: 3.5 | overall: 3.5

Fair and sociable festive offering, but nothing really memorable.

Presentation: 750 ml corked and painted brown bottle resembling white ceramic (follows the initial batch of their flagship, which seems to have been done with cheap overstocked bottles from a German brewer initially, and then became an identity sign.) Winter label, with an elephant wearing a Santa hat skating under the snow flakes (a few variations are introduced of the illustration on this Noël releases I think…) Cork notes date (2011) and label offers a notched date (03 11). Shows 10% Alc. by Vol. Served in a tulip glass.

A - Clear (maybe the slightest of haze, maybe, in the final serving) amber brown pour, with a short fizzy head, small retention, minimal surface memory and no lacing.

S - Pleasing if generic nose, caramel, soft yeasty sense, with dark fruit, the faintest of spices as it reaches the lips….

T - …and once it does little else besides. Sugary caramel, mat woven yeast in a pleasing way, bready touches under the fruit, soft caramel.

M - Medium to medium-full body with high carbonation initially, and a prickly sweet flow.

O - Fair Christmas brew, but a tad too generic and blah. Nothing I would seek out again proactively.

Notes: I really do fear these brews keep on riding on some sort of iconic popularity, specially among the non-aficionados… And sure enough, they are quality and fair, but nothing remarkable, and surely not of my particular liking.

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Photo of Travlr
3.46/5  rDev -10.8%
look: 2 | smell: 3.5 | taste: 4 | feel: 2 | overall: 3.5

Light brown with a thick white head, long retention with good lacing. VERY sweet, malty aroma, heavy on the caramel. Medium mouth, subtle vanilla flavor, maybe some light spice, lots of malt with some hops to balance, but not enough. Little aftertaste. "Quick and done."

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Photo of AtrumAnimus
3.45/5  rDev -11.1%
look: 4 | smell: 4 | taste: 3 | feel: 3.5 | overall: 3.5

I more or less agree with other reviews on this beer. This beer has a lot of potential I believe. There is a good hop blend, and great bouquet and the initial taste is excellent. But he finish is rough with a little of the ugh factor sneaking in on the finish. I would recommend shelving hits one till next Christmas. with the large volume of alcohol is it going to be hard for the yeast to refine this some more. But it will refine. To me this one just wasn't ready to drink yet. It needs more time in the fermentation stage to get the flavors a little more mellowed out and refined. Right now there is just to much contrast with the varying flavors.

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Photo of Stunner97
3.45/5  rDev -11.1%
look: 3.5 | smell: 3.5 | taste: 3.5 | feel: 3 | overall: 3.5

appearance- brown to amber in color with thick tan head quickly fading to lacing, low amount carbonation

smell-spice , apple, yeast, malt,

taste- alot spice, almost cinnamon and apple flavors, get a somewhat typical belgian yeast flavor, the flavor on this beer is not in any means but it just really lacks alot complexity, simple,

Mouthfeel- very light and crisp, drying, not nearly as heavy as you would expect for the alcohol level

Drinkability/overall- i would say for the most part this beer was a little to simple, while it wasnt bad it just lacked that little something extra to make it great, not as good probably as there two regular offerings, certainly quite easy get down and the booze quite hidden but id say a bit lack luster

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Photo of quinnsi
3.45/5  rDev -11.1%
look: 3.5 | smell: 3.5 | taste: 3.5 | feel: 3 | overall: 3.5

Had on tap at Paddy Longs. Keg was aged one year.

A: Copper and amber with a two fingers of head that quickly and totally dissipates

S: Good malt and peppery spices, as well as coriander and mild candy sweetness.

T: Coriander, yeast with belgian spices and dark fruit sweetness

M: mild carbonation and very slightly slick feeling in the mouth.

D: I could have one or two of these beers no problem.

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Photo of beer2day
3.45/5  rDev -11.1%
look: 4 | smell: 4 | taste: 3 | feel: 3.5 | overall: 3.5

Cellared 2 years in the beer fridge.

Pours black with hints of burgundy. Thick, creamy head leads to moderate lacing. Big strong fruity aroma with cherries leading the way. Chocolate sneaks in towards the end. Initial hit is smoother than a fresh bottle, and the beer finishes very well - just the right mix of tart and sweet. 18 months seems about right to age this one, but I'm not sure I'd want to drink it in warm weather!

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Photo of smedley
3.43/5  rDev -11.6%
look: 4 | smell: 3.5 | taste: 3.5 | feel: 3.5 | overall: 3

A - Amber red, thin tan head, slight lacing

S - Malty, sweet, spicy, cloves, alcohol

T - Sweet, fruity, spicy. Alcohol is strong.

M - Slightly warming, medium carbonation

D - Just OK for me, at least compared to the price. Lacked some of the complexity I expected from a seasonal beer.

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Photo of mdcrouser
3.43/5  rDev -11.6%
look: 4 | smell: 3.5 | taste: 3 | feel: 3.5 | overall: 4

At first pour, this beer pours lighter than air, practically floating from my hand.

Muddy brown, but somehow still glowing, this looks to be a chunky, pretty complex beer.

Yeasty to the nose, the first drink is like a slab of toffee unrolling atop the tongue, dotted with hints of cinnamon, citrus, and cloves.

Smooth as silk, with only a light alcoholic breath, it forces your jaw open to enjoy it fully letting it in, letting it out.

Filling, yet somewhat, and somehow, underwhelming.

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Photo of 71ADub
3.42/5  rDev -11.9%
look: 3.75 | smell: 3.5 | taste: 3.25 | feel: 3.5 | overall: 3.5

on tap. Goblet

A- dark amber, thin white lacy head

S- bready, grapes like wine

T-bready, with a sl sour aftertaste

M-lo carbonation, smooth.

O - Enjoyable, A nice simple tasting smooth Belgian strong ale.

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Photo of lmaduells
3.42/5  rDev -11.9%
look: 3 | smell: 3.5 | taste: 3.5 | feel: 3.5 | overall: 3.25

Beer Christmas that I think it deserves that name. It is proper beer commercial, maybe even deserves note; but does not reach the level of the great beers of Christmas. And they do enjoy the Christmas holidays in a way really wonderful for beer lovers. This not.

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Photo of Popsinc
3.41/5  rDev -12.1%
look: 4 | smell: 3 | taste: 3.5 | feel: 3.5 | overall: 3.5

Appearance: A redish brown pour with an off white and modest head. Hmmm, looks kinda like a Christmas beer...

Smell: When i think of Christmas & Christmas beer i think of strong spice & fruitiness....lots of alcohol warmth...the nose on this beer was mild to a fault.

Taste: The beer picks up somewhat here and has a decent spiced body with hints of nutmeg and cinnamon that reminded me a little of a fruit cake. The flavours didn't last long enough for me and the beer ended with a candycane sugary sweetness. Nice warming effect on the finish due to the 10% alcohol content.

Mouthfeel: Somewhat lively and a lightly rich.

Drinkability: Not as intense as i would have liked for a Christmas beer. There are other Christmas beers i would definitley prefer. Having said that, it is still a worthwhile beer...hey, i've tried pure crap in the past and this isn't crap. It's good.

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Photo of SirWalkAbout
3.41/5  rDev -12.1%
look: 4 | smell: 3 | taste: 3.5 | feel: 3.5 | overall: 3.5

Poured into a tulip. Nice dark red color, with a light ivory colored head. Good carbonation.

Pleasant orange smell. Also smell the yeast, and the high alcohol content.

Taste is different than expected. Floral, lemon citrusy, a little spice, and a little alcohol bite.

Disappears from the pallet quickly. Good carbonation.

Overall it's good. It's not a home run for me, and in comparison to the Tremens, this one is not quite there. Worth a try, not worth searching the globe to find.

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Photo of megahurts4
3.4/5  rDev -12.4%
look: 3 | smell: 3 | taste: 4 | feel: 3 | overall: 3

Delirium Noel

Appearance: Medium head with some lacing.

Smell: Subtle malt, hop, slight sweetness, and minerals from the water used.

Taste: Subtle spices, subtle dark fruits such as cherries, and slightly more prominent malts.

Mouthfeel: Medium-heavier and semi-smooth.

Bottom line:
I am not impressed with this beer. It is almost watery tasting, yet strong. I am hoping I just have a bad batch or bottle. I really enjoyed other Delirium beers much more than this one.

 473 characters

Photo of rfgetz
3.4/5  rDev -12.4%
look: 3.5 | smell: 3.5 | taste: 3.5 | feel: 3.5 | overall: 3

Pours a clear dark amber with highly active carbonation. Scent is yeasty and boozy with notes of watery and dark fruit and minimal spice. Taste again brings a big punch of yeast and alcohol up front, the nice notes of watery and dark fruit a bit difficult to appreciate and the light spicing even more so. Lighter side of medium bodied, active carbonation, dry and lingering. I will revisit and this bottle just seemed way too boozy, disguising all the other flavors and scents.

 478 characters

Photo of Krakistophales
3.4/5  rDev -12.4%
look: 4 | smell: 4 | taste: 3 | feel: 4 | overall: 3

A: Pours dark plum color with almost no head but lively carbonation.

S: Brown sugar, hints of dark fruit, some booziness, hints of sweetness

T: A pretty flat note of just grape and some brown sugar. Not much going on here, pretty disappointing.

O: The smell is better than the taste, and on top of that the taste isn't all that exciting, so I'll stick to the usual nocturnum or tremens.

 389 characters

Photo of ericlawton007
3.4/5  rDev -12.4%
look: 3 | smell: 3 | taste: 3 | feel: 3 | overall: 5

Dark golden color with very little head. Apple is found in the aroma if you look for it, but my first smell gave me nothing but the yeast. Tasted like a very generic belgian ale. No hints of anything that would make this a winter beer, nor anything that would make this worth 10 dollars a bottle. Really dissappointe as I had been really looking forward to trying this. The one upside is that it hides the 10% abv very well, making it very drinkable.

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Photo of Arbitrator
3.4/5  rDev -12.4%
look: 3.5 | smell: 3.5 | taste: 3.5 | feel: 3.5 | overall: 3

On-tap at Toronado.

A: Amber / purple body. Light head, mostly in the form of a thin film on top. No lacing.

S: Apples, plums, cherries, spices, a strong alcohol smell.

T: Sweet. Candied dark fruits, brown sugar, a light hop presence at the end of the flavor profile. A noticeable alcohol warmth.

M: Thin-bodied, sticky, decent carbonation.

D: The taste is definitely imbalanced toward the sweet side. Would not be a good session beer, although I am glad to have it as a sipping / dessert ale. The alcohol warms nicely. I would certainly have another bottle next winter, but I see no strong reason to have it again soon.

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Photo of warmstorage
3.39/5  rDev -12.6%
look: 4 | smell: 2.5 | taste: 3.5 | feel: 3.5 | overall: 4

On tap at the Brick House Pub in (metro) Atlanta, served at nice cellar temp in logo glassware (goblet.)

Pours a deep amber with a thick white head that fades to little, leaves moderate lacing.

Aroma is a little flat for such a big beer, slightly metallic, and not especially pleasant.

Initial taste is hot, spicy alcohol. Lingers long with spicy alcohol, fresh fruit, and notes of stonefruit.

A difficult beer to score, as it's pretty good in all categories, but slightly disappointing in that it's not great in any category. Surprisingly drinkable for a 10% holiday beer. I'd order it again, but not before I tasted most of the other fun, big beers a place had to offer.

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Photo of
3.38/5  rDev -12.9%
look: 4 | smell: 3.5 | taste: 3.5 | feel: 3 | overall: 3

Poured a copper amber color with a fair amount of head. Aroma was an earthy yeast, honey, fruit esters and cotton candy (must be all that sugar). Flavor was very sweet, with no hops to be found. Raisins, grass and bread were apparent and the alcohol was very well hidden, just peeking through at the end. Mouthfeel was slick, with carbonation almost imperceptible. As far as drinkability, it was excellent in taste, but not something you could drink a lot of.

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Photo of wagenvolks
3.38/5  rDev -12.9%
look: 3.5 | smell: 3 | taste: 3.5 | feel: 3.5 | overall: 3.5

300mL bottle into (what else?) a Delirium tremens tulip. Bottle notched at 3 and 7.

Despite how absolutely sexy this glass is, it really doesn't do much to help the appearance of Noël. Perhaps it was my fault, as I tried in vain to save the last ounce of beer to avoid the sediment. Chunky, and the carbonation rising up from the etching along the glass's bottom recirculates the settling yeast like a demented Lava Lamp. Still, the tangerine-amber body is an attractive hue, and the tuft of creamy, custard head barely budges. Not getting a lot from the aroma, unfortunately. Hints of raisin and fig here, a little caramel and alcohol there, but for a big Belgian beer such as this, I expected much more.

Fizzy raisin-rum cake gives way to Saaz bittering hops on the back of the tongue. Yeasty sourdough and vegetation make an appearance alongside dark fruits, spices, and warming booze. Well-hidden alcohol given the ABV. Mouthfeel is bubbly and of medium thickness, with a sticky, spicy finish. I encountered Delirium early in my craft beer-drinking career, and I didn't quite care for it then. It was good, just not as great as it had been touted by some. Over four years later, I've reached the same conclusion.

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Delirium Noël from Brouwerij Huyghe
3.88 out of 5 based on 1,948 ratings.
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