La Guillotine | Brouwerij Huyghe

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BA SCORE
88
very good
112 Reviews
La GuillotineLa Guillotine
BEER INFO

Brewed by:
Brouwerij Huyghe
Belgium | website

Style: Belgian Strong Pale Ale

Alcohol by volume (ABV): 8.50%

Availability: Year-round

Notes / Commercial Description:
No notes at this time.

Added by BeerAdvocate on 06-02-2002

BEER STATS
Reviews:
112
Ratings:
356
Avg:
3.91
pDev:
20.46%
 
 
Wants:
35
Gots:
86
For Trade:
0
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Reviews: 112 | Ratings: 356
Photo of thierrynantes
3.7/5  rDev -5.4%
look: 3.5 | smell: 3.5 | taste: 4 | feel: 3.5 | overall: 3.5

Beer bottle (33cl.), tasted in 2001.

Appearance : yellow (troubled) color, with white foamy head.
Smell : yeast, peppery, and malty aromas.
Taste and mouthfeel : sweet and fruity flavours, well-hop spiced.
Drinkability : a good beer in the style Belgian strong pale ale.

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Photo of BedetheVenerable
3.86/5  rDev -1.3%
look: 3 | smell: 4.5 | taste: 4 | feel: 4 | overall: 3

Thanks to my fiancee for bringing this one back from Belgium for me!

Presentation: Cool fake ceramic painted bottle with foil cap and a label with...what else? A guillotine.

Appearance: Bright golden beer with a LOT of fairly large yeast sediment floating about in suspension. There's vibrant carbonation, and a snow white cap that soon fades to a persistent film.

Smell: Sweet, yeasty, fruity (apple, peach, orange citrus) and buttery cookie, with a slight spiciness. Dead on for a Belgian Strong Pale.

Taste: Bold. Sharp Belgian candy-sugar induced alcohol sweetness, backed by notes of vibrant peach and green apple. There's a mild, spicy hop presence, with significant hop bitterness on the finish.

Mouthfeel: Light, yet somewhat coating.

Drinkability: One and done; it's tasty, but not to be trifled with...

Conclusion: I'm somewhat torn on this beer. The flavors are nice, if slightly simple, and the alchol is a bit hot, but it's also nicely sharp and palate-cleansing. Overall, a pretty nice Belgian Strong Pale.

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Photo of markaberrant
3.7/5  rDev -5.4%
look: 3.5 | smell: 3.5 | taste: 4 | feel: 3.5 | overall: 3.5

A - I hate these stupid bottles, you can't see the sediment. I was just about to tip up the bottle after a beautiful pour and then... plop, plop, plop, massive chunks of yeast do "cannonballs" into my glass and now I'm left with something resembling bubble tea. It was clear, gold with orange hues, big puffy white head, and ample carbonation. Doesn't leave much for lacing.

S - mild acidity, otherwise your typical tripel character, sweet pils, lemon/orange zest, herb and spice

T - I don't really get any of the acidity in the flavour, but I do get a distinct lemon lime character that reminds me of 7Up or Sprite, but in a good way. Moderate amount of sweetness upfront, finish is decidely dry. Pepper is mild, which is good because the alcohol is really dry.

M - When I'm not straining yeast threw me teeth, it is bubbly, mouth filling but light. The alcohol is certainly noticable, but is not warm.

D - maybe not the best tripel I've ever had, but tasty and unique enough to be recommended.

Pretty good, finish is exceptionally dry. The acid in the smell is a little odd. Worth trying once, but I'd stick with their Delirium Tremens which is far superior.

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Photo of therica
3.82/5  rDev -2.3%
look: 3.5 | smell: 4 | taste: 4 | feel: 3.5 | overall: 3.5

Served from bottle in Leuven.

A= nearly no head, with apple-juice color and appearance.

S= apple, corn, malt, with typical hints of alcohol.

T= Nice taste, and the typically-Belgian taste of alcohol is rather light, considering the 9% ABV. Apple, corn, malts, some hops bite. Spicy peppery, some fruitiness and nutty evidence seem to come and go as it's consumed.

M= lots to savor in the finish and after-taste.

D= definitely try it, if for nothing else than the souvenir bottle! ha ha

If you're at the Brauhaus in Brussels, go to the end of the dead-end alley and see the little-appreciated and frequently overlooked Jeanneke Pis, the squatting little sister of famous Manneken Pis!

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Photo of ATPete
4.02/5  rDev +2.8%
look: 3.5 | smell: 4 | taste: 4 | feel: 4.5 | overall: 4

33ml bottle purchased from The Beer Koning in Amsterdam, NL.

A- Very hazy yellow/orange, thin white head with some visible rising carbonation.

S- Piney almost minty, some spice, some hops, orange peel, apple and booze...very nice

T- Vanilla, Dr Pepper, some ginger, bread, lots of spices, old fruit and quality malt.

M- i think this is its strongest aspect, very crisp with a medium mouth feel.

D- Based on its sheer complexity i wish i had a few more bottles to cellar and watch mature with some time...

R- I haven't had a bad beer from Huyghe yet. This one is worth buying at least 3 of.

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Photo of lacqueredmouse
4.05/5  rDev +3.6%
look: 4 | smell: 4 | taste: 4 | feel: 4.5 | overall: 4

Nice foil-topped faux-ceramic 33cl bottle. Opens with barely a sound of carbonation - I was a little worried, as this one had a fair bit of age on it, but my worries were premature.

Pours a thick, cloudy light orange-beige colour, with a yellowing white head of compact bubbles. Carbonation bubbles make slow progress upwards from the base of the glass. Heavy body leaves excellent lacing. A great looking beer.

Light, fruity note on the nose: cider, pineapple with hints of darker, yeasty elements. As it warms, more organic tones of leather and earth creep in, providing a decidedly unusual character for such a light-coloured beer.

Crisp entry on the palate, with pine resin characters, rye bread and spices. Rather reminiscent of the loaves peppered with caraway I had in Austria. Very noticeable, robustly bitter back palate stays long and sharp. There's a strong note of alcohol heat to numb the palate slightly as well. Despite this, the body is quite creamy and full - more so than many invert-sugar reliant Belgian ales.

This is a very drinkable brew, and one that is smooth with age. I imagine there's some fresher characters in the younger version that I may have missed, but the mellow, creamy, languous version I have here is just fine with me...

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Photo of belgbeerdrinker
3.73/5  rDev -4.6%
look: 3.5 | smell: 3 | taste: 4 | feel: 4 | overall: 4

a: clear gold color with plenty of carbonated streams, medium head finishing to a finger-thick layer, decent lacing
s: flat yeast smell with hints of banana and a bit of zest
t: sweet, banana and yeast flavor all there along with warm alcohol & slight tartness at the end -- this is like a more tart version of delirium tremens! same brewer, similar ceramic bottle & taste!
m: a carbonated adventure! medium body
d: easy to drink given the abv & plenty of taste & carbonation to keep you interested. prefer delirium over this, but not by too much

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Photo of ablaze
3.97/5  rDev +1.5%
look: 3 | smell: 3.5 | taste: 4.5 | feel: 3.5 | overall: 4

Minimal foamy head with little lacing on top of this golden brew.

Daisies and apricots on the nose, with some apple juice.

Pineapple, candied ginger, calimyrna figs, tart mangoes on rye. Sweet and sour with some dry pepper (helping hand of alcohol). This is delicate and refreshing, perfect for an afternoon in the sun. Light body, crisp from the tartness and decent carbonation.

This would go great with a light and flaky halibut, or some angel food cake as a dessert. Very fun and interesting Belgian to sip on; glad I have another bottle to finish off the season.

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Photo of davidchollar
4.03/5  rDev +3.1%
look: 4.5 | smell: 4 | taste: 4 | feel: 4 | overall: 4

I really like the bottles and labels from this brewery, very artistic and distinct! This BSPA poured into my tulip glass presents a fine looking beer. A hazy, golden honey with a gorgeous thick white head. Note: This very well may be a beautiful ale, or it could be that I just haven't had a classy beer in a while, been swilling lately to beat the heat.

My first impression of the smell is good. Strong and fruity, I get the typical "Belgian Strong" smells. I just realized it kind of reminds me of Hoegaarden's Forbidden Fruit, in it's nearly over-the-top fruitiness. Apricot dominates, also some pineapple and candy, nothing spectacular here but certainly not bad.

The taste, however, is a little better. Well balanced, with a bold, sweet and SPICY taste up front but a pleasantly bitter kick at the finish. Very smooth and easy to drink. This is 9% abv ?! Nothing bad to say about the taste. If anything, I would say La Guillotine falls short of the 90 mark for lack of originality - it just doesn't seem that memorable. I'd get it again, but at 470 yen ($4.50), it's kind of expensive. Along with the other Brouwerij Huyghe offerings I've had ... Recommended.

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Photo of vancurly
3.85/5  rDev -1.5%
look: 3.5 | smell: 3.5 | taste: 4 | feel: 4 | overall: 4

Poured into a Leffe chalice.
Rocky offwhite foamy head..hazy apricot in colour, some thin persistent bubbling lifting off the bottom of the glass and disappearing in the haze....
Tropical fruit nose...pineapple mostly, but a hint of sherbety lemon. Some grassy notes.
Candy-like, yet spicy...hint of anise (licorice allsort), maybe some nutmeg or coriander... quite a savoury profile. Some wild vegetal herbal hop in there also. And plenty of pineapple as it warms...
Almost tart in mouthfeel....Quite dry in profile... alcohol heat is evident.

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Photo of rec
4/5  rDev +2.3%
look: 4 | smell: 4 | taste: 4 | feel: 4 | overall: 4

I first tried this almost a year ago in Canberra's Belgian Beer Bar, but decided to rebuy it tonight and serve at a temperature I was comfortable with.

It poured golden yellow with a dynamite two-inch foamy head, which also laces brilliantly.

Spice, light fruit such as apricot and citrus come through upon inspection of aroma. It's extremely complex, and a pleasure to disect.

The taste is highly spicey with the lighter fruits coming through strong. It has relatively high carbonation and the mouthfeel remains light yet somewhat creamy.

It's definately something I could drink a lot of, although almost too similar to its brother Delirium Tremens. Regardless, I remain very happy with it; something I'll buy again!

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Photo of Shadman
3.5/5  rDev -10.5%
look: 3.5 | smell: 3.5 | taste: 3.5 | feel: 3.5 | overall: 3.5

Saw this along with the small selection of non-macro singles at a local beer store. Pured a hazy amber-yellow with a ton of carbonation...as much fizz a ginger-ale. Frothy white head that left a small amount of lacing. Very much a breadish smell with a hint of that high ABV. Tasted quite yeasty with a touch of hops. Definitely feel the alcohol in the mouth afterward. Tried this one on an empty stomach...got quite the head-rush..

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Photo of BigBry
4/5  rDev +2.3%
look: 4 | smell: 4 | taste: 4 | feel: 4 | overall: 4

330 ml ceramic bottle with red foil cap. 'Best Before End' of Mar 2007 clipped on the back label. Has been aging for over a year. Has tried this one at a Beer Fest, and was quite strong (almost harsh). Let's see what some rest time has done.
Color is yellowy/golden with a haze from the yeast. Not a large head, decent layer of white foam, thin lacing. Yeasty and acidic smell, also get aromas of fenel and anise.
Taste has smoothed out nicely. Lots of carbonation keep it crisp and light. Yeasty flavor, with spice and pepper. A bit fruity, but not sweet, quite dry finish. Slightly alcohol aftertaste, but still well hidden. Complex, and still a bit strong in the flavor department, but has mellowed out nicely.

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Photo of vanrassel
3.83/5  rDev -2%
look: 4 | smell: 3.5 | taste: 4 | feel: 3.5 | overall: 4

This beer poured with a cloudy gold with a slight apricot hue and a thin, effervescent head. There were some fruity esters present in the smell, along with a yeasty aroma you'd expect in a beer of this kind.

The taste started malty and with a bit of sharp alcohol. The taste was quite tart and citric, reminding me of ginger ale and lemon. The carbonation was a little high for my liking.

I have to concur with others that it's curious Huyghe would brew another beer so similar to Delirium Tremens. This one's different enough, however, that I can state a clear preference for its superior sibling.

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Photo of TurdFurgison
4.42/5  rDev +13%
look: 4 | smell: 4.5 | taste: 4.5 | feel: 4 | overall: 4.5

Poured from a bottle into the brewery chalice at the Frigo cafe in Shinjuku Japan. I've never seen this in the USA, not sure why it's in Tokyo but several other people were ordering it too so it's apparently popular.

The appearance was pale and cloudy yellow with a thick poofy white head (similar to Delirium Tremens). The aroma was grassy and funky and also similar to Delirium Tremens. It tasted delicious, almost exactly like one of my favorite beers (Delirium Tremens).

Not really sure why Huyghe makes 2 different beers which are so similar. Maybe someday I'll try them side-by-side and compare for what difference must exist.

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Photo of FightingEntropy
3.25/5  rDev -16.9%
look: 3.5 | smell: 3.5 | taste: 3 | feel: 3 | overall: 3.5

Overall, the very light golden ale was pleasant to drink, but seemed to be one dimensional. Poured out nicely with a good head that fell quick with very little lace, but that might have been because it was a little too cold. Strong fruity esters like apple cider, and yeasty all over the place(even pouring gently and leaving an inch), and tasted very sweet on the tip of the tongue, a solid carbonation bite with a slight bitterness to the back but nothing much and no hop presence at all. I was hoping that it would warm up well, but seemed to get thinner and the 9% alcohol really expanded and filled my mouth. It comes in a sharp bottle with a guillotine on the front, so I had hope for a bit more. Good if it's in front of you and you like Huyghe. I couldn't read the best used by date on the bottle, and got it in Jasper, Alberta--so maybe it was past its prime.

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Photo of jamie2dope
4.58/5  rDev +17.1%
look: 4.5 | smell: 4 | taste: 5 | feel: 4.5 | overall: 4.5

Another beer that I am happy to have discovered during my stay in a foreign land. Pours a cloudy golden tinge with a small, but impressive looking white head. Loads and loads of sediment were swirling around this beer, as well as a few other darker sediment particles that did not look attractive, but didn't seem to bug me. Smell was excellent, fruit throughout such as cherries, apples, passionfruit, pineapple. There was also a light medicinal smell in there. Taste was amazing, juicy fruit, and sweet sugary honey dominated, with some mild sour trangs coming through as it went towards the back of the palate. It was somewhat syrupy, maybe due to the honey tastes I noticed. As for drinkability, My God if only I had this beer around every night, I would be in sheer bliss. I swear this beer came straight from Hades to tempt us all with its deliciousness. Indulge

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Photo of nickss
4.18/5  rDev +6.9%
look: 5 | smell: 4.5 | taste: 4 | feel: 4 | overall: 4

Poured into the appropriate glass. The beer itself is cloudy and has a golden hue. The white, rocky head is a monumental 2". Gorgeous crystaline lacing.

Spicy hops, almost smokey aroma. Yeasty and lemony. Pepper is apparent as well. This one seems to be almost a mix of a rauch and a belgian strong. Amazingly complex.

Crisp lemon flavour with an almost Saaz-like presence. A bit of pepper. This one reminds me a bit of some of the Unibroue offerings.

Crisp mouthfeel due to the carbonation. All in all though, moderately thick and quite nice.

Drinkable, but a bit too highly carbonated for me to drink more than a couple. Fantastically enjoyable though.

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Photo of nouseforotacon
3.74/5  rDev -4.3%
look: 3 | smell: 4 | taste: 4 | feel: 3 | overall: 3.5

I purchased this in Tokyo from Isetan department store. Best before August 2008.

Poured out a very pale yellow, lightly golden in color. Foamy white head rushed quickly to the top, but also faded quickly leaving a murky white film with strong carbonation.

The smell was a bit funky at first, boldly sweet with warm alcoholic smelling fruit esters. Dry spice, somewhat peppery, touch of yeast, and some sugary artificial aromas come to the surface. Complex and interesting.

Initially very wet in the mouth, with a dry finish that was also warm alcoholic (reminds me of champagne). The fruit character was present, sweet and tart, reminding me of nectarines. Spicy, peppery aftertaste was present. The body felt surprisingly light in the mouth, with a low hop character.

Well done, but unfortunately I felt like the mouthfeel was slightly unbalanced. There was a somewhat nasty artificial flavoring that left my tongue with an on/off harsh, unpleasant aftertaste.

I dig Belgian Strongs, both pale and dark. This one is worth a try, complex, but still a bit unbalanced.

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Photo of mzwolinski
3.47/5  rDev -11.3%
look: 3 | smell: 3.5 | taste: 3.5 | feel: 3.5 | overall: 3.5

Attractive bottle, but a fairly unattractive beer. The faux-ceramic look is classic-looking and functional in protecting the beer from light. Once poured, though, the beer pours a pleasant clear yellowish gold, but is marred by a large-bubbled, uneven off-white head. Reminds me of a mangy dog's coat.

The aroma is mixed as well. Nice spicy and floral hops, but the malt character has something of an unpleasant metallic tinge to it.

In the mouth, the beer starts juicy, citric and sweet. A bit of honey character mid-palate. The finish has some nice spicy hops, but, as foreshadowed in the aroma, this quickly melds into a rather harsh metallic flavor that leaves a bad taste in the mouth. Besides that, the mouthfeel is a bit fizzy.

A promising beer, and drinkable, but ultimately disappointing, especially given the usually fine beers produced by this brewery.

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Photo of tavernjef
3.97/5  rDev +1.5%
look: 3.5 | smell: 4 | taste: 4 | feel: 4 | overall: 4

Murky golden yellow with a rough mist of yeasty chunks floating around in there. Medium white cap flights away from the top like a wind blown snow cover across a frozen lake. Very little lace if any decides to stick or make a presence.

Aroma is fueled behind a fine citric sweetness of lemon and orange with a tight squeeze of mustyness to help create a fairly decent Belgian candy-like bouquet.

Taste is also fueled by a moderate dullness of citrusy flavors bringing orange and lemon candied in sweetness. Wet, juicy, and musty for most of its time. Slightly dry and pale finish with some left over yeasty dustings of tannins and dirty fruit skins.

Feel starts fairly full and slides back from there into a medium body with dullish tones in both flavors and carbonation. Finish is both good and bad - Dry, pale, a tad off. It doesn't seem to fit whats going on in the rest of the beer but I like its unique drying weirdness.

A fairly standard Belgian Pale. Could be better, could be alot worse.

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Photo of dauss
4.03/5  rDev +3.1%
look: 2.5 | smell: 4.5 | taste: 4.5 | feel: 4 | overall: 3

Presentation: 33cl brown bottle coated with this cream colored coating thats beginning to crack off. A bright red foil covers the bottle cap on the top of the bottle. There were notches on the label, but I'm unable to decipher what it meant. This beer was purchased in Taiwan 8 months ago and brought to the US.

Appearance: Clear golden yellow. At first a lage white head had formed, but quickly dissappeared. It is very effervescent, tons of little bubbles just streaming through the beer.

Smell: A thick and sweet malty nose with a bouquet of fruit. General fruity esters with green apples accompany a spicy phenolic nose.

Taste: A full bodied malty and lightly sweet entrance with a lot of fruit flavors. Strong carbonation turns the beer into a bubbly and almost creamy consistancy. Mild phenols and alcohol begin to peak near the finish with a light drying sensation and a malty grainy taste in the end with a full mouthfeel. The 9% ABV is really noticible when the beer warms up.

Notes: I wish this beer had some sort of head retention or lacing, but at 9%, I can understand why it doesn't. This beer has mellowed out into a smooth and fruity Belgian beer. The alcohol is still quite strong after spending so much time in the bottle, and the heavy carbonation makes this a slow sipping beer. Its still very good.

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Photo of Weizenmensch
4.31/5  rDev +10.2%
look: 3.5 | smell: 5 | taste: 4 | feel: 4 | overall: 4.5

330mL painted ceramic-look glass bottle with red foil around the neck. Best before July '06, if I've understood the labelling system properly.

Appearance: Pretty nice cloudy dark yellow/orange pour with fairly quick dissipating head. Darker than Duvel, but still pretty appropriate. Lacing quite sticky but not all over the place. Fairly normal for the style.

Smell: Gorgeous citrus and cider aromas. Really full-flavoured, I am spending more time sniffing this than drinking it!

Taste: Really nice. Peppery, alcoholic, some candied sugar. Quite watery, i.e. not too pungent, like a watered-down scotch. Very drinkable and a nice sticky aftertaste.

Mouthfeel: Fizzy with head forming in the mouth. Quite lubricated. Smooth goin' down. It seems like a layer of Guillotine still covers your tongue and mucous membranes after you've swallowed. Cool.

Drinkability: For the style, this is well drinkable. These kinds of strong Belgian ales aren't usually too good to have dozens of, but this one is nice and I could see myself having a few in rapid succession. Still, if I wanted to get that smashed I might as well drink a couple then switch to some cheap local macro brew. I'm enjoying this one now though, and this will become a regular I think.

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Photo of elricorico
3.74/5  rDev -4.3%
look: 3 | smell: 4 | taste: 4 | feel: 3 | overall: 3.5

This beer pourerd a hazy orange with a thick creamy white head. If that was all, appearance would probably be a four, but it has so much sediment floating around in it! The first of the sediment actually dropped with an audible plop. Quite a turn off for me, and I tend to always pour my yeast into the glass with belgian beers

Smell is quite nice on the other hand. Very citrus with orange peel quite notable. Not as much spice smell to it as some others of the style, but still a hint there.

Taste is a sweet and tangy mix of citrus flavour with a spicy(coriander?) follow up and an alcohol finish. The alcohol isn't overpowering, but is definitely there in the end. Makes for a pleasant mix, and isn't quite like any Belgian Strong Pale that I've tasted.

Mouthfeel isn't bad, but I find the carbonation to be a bit overdone. Leaves the beer feeling a bit sharp against your tongue.

I find this beer to be all over the place. There are mouthfulls that I find fantastic and mouthfulls that put me off a bit. It's certainly a complex and interesting beer.

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Photo of thesilverhand
3.78/5  rDev -3.3%
look: 4.5 | smell: 4 | taste: 4 | feel: 2.5 | overall: 3.5

Sampled at home, from a bottle, in a tulip glass. It poured a slightly hazy orange-yellow with a massive creamy foam head. This is quite an attractive beer, and leaves a nice lace on the glass.
The nose is full of sweet fruit - very sweet. My girlfriend says, "Mmm...cidery." Definitely a bit of apple!
Then to the first sip - there's still lots of fruit; it's not as sweet or distinct as I expected from the nose, but is still prevalent. It fades pleasantly into spice - pepper and cloves most strongly. The alcohol - it is nine per cent, after all - also comes through strongly into the finish, which is quite dry.
It's a bit sharply alcoholic on the palate...not unpleasant, but I can feel the alcohol more than I'd like.
Overall, this is a really nice beer...I wouldn't - or perhaps couldn't, at this strength! - have more than a couple at a sitting, but I certainly will have it again.

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La Guillotine from Brouwerij Huyghe
3.91 out of 5 based on 356 ratings.
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