De Dolle Stille Nacht | Brouwerij De Dolle Brouwers

514 Reviews
De Dolle Stille NachtDe Dolle Stille Nacht

Brewed by:
Brouwerij De Dolle Brouwers

Style: Belgian Strong Pale Ale

Alcohol by volume (ABV): 12.00%

Availability: Winter

Notes / Commercial Description:
Alcohol has gone from 8% to 12% in recent years due to better yeast performance; according to Kris Kerteler.

Added by Todd on 03-25-2001

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Reviews: 514 | Ratings: 1,042
Photo of CoreyC
4.24/5  rDev +2.9%
look: 3.5 | smell: 4.5 | taste: 4.25 | feel: 4 | overall: 4.25

2015 Vintage
A -Huge out of control carbonation.
S - Floral fruity aroma. When the head/carbonation was strong it had a champagne-like aroma.
T - Sweet fruit flavors with more richness than typical for a lighter golden Belgian.
M - Interesting with nice stickiness cut by the heavy carbonation.
O - I liked it a lot, but could do with less carbonation. I plan to age my other three for up to 20 years.

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Photo of Jacobob10
3.92/5  rDev -4.9%
look: 4 | smell: 4.5 | taste: 3.75 | feel: 3.5 | overall: 3.75

2015 vintage, as stamped on the cap.

Deep gold color, bordering on light amber, and hazy with small yeast particles floating around. A massive white head climbs above the rim of the glass with good retention.

The aroma is both strong and unique. A potent mix of apple cider, overripe banana, butterscotch, alcohol,and clove. It's more complex than I'm giving it credit for but it's thought to describe.

Fruity and spicy flavor with prominent alcohol. The beer has a warming feel to it yet it's not overly difficult to drink. In fact, it finishes slightly on the dry side.

I was really excited to find a bottle of this after having an excellent Arabier on draft a couple of months ago. However, it didn't meet my high expectations. The notes on this beer say it has increased from 8% to 12% ABV over time and I actually think it would be more successful as an 8% beer. The alcohol heat gets in the way a little too much for me. Not a bad beer though. Almost like a spiked spiced apple cider.

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Photo of thebeers
3.29/5  rDev -20.1%
look: 3 | smell: 3.25 | taste: 3.25 | feel: 3.75 | overall: 3.25

2015 stamped on the cap.

Hazed dark gold color, with churning effervescence, and an annoyingly massive and long-lasting white foam head, even with a careful pour. A few small floaters, too. Sloppy, uneven lacing.

Apple cider stands out most in the aroma. Maybe a little pear, doughy malt and yeast in there as well.

Excessively sweet, fruity taste, with some allspice and some nice Belgian yeast. A kiss of alcohol and some slight pepperiness on the backend. Definitely pretty Christmas-like, like an apple pastry, but not all that artfully done to my taste.

Thick, somewhat syrupy mouthfeel with decent carbonation that gives it a little prickliness.

I had high expectations, and from the over-carbonation on, I was pretty disappointed. If you want a convenience store apple pie in a glass, this one's for you.

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Photo of threeviews
4.67/5  rDev +13.3%
look: 4.25 | smell: 4.75 | taste: 4.75 | feel: 4.75 | overall: 4.5

Poured from an 11.2oz bottle (Vintage 2015 stamped on the crown) into a Charente glass.

A - De Dolle beers are known to explode with a massive head and a VERY gentle pour (and leaving most of the dregs behind) yielded a massive 3-finger, eggshell white head that continued to grow!. The beer itself was a hazy golden-orange colour. (4.25)

S - Crazy aromatics on this one. Vanilla, Brandied Fruitcake, Flowers, Honey, fruity esters of Apricot, Rum-soaked Orange and peach all combine with the bready character that is signature of De Dolle's house yeast strain. (4.75)

T - The flavor is a combination of those sweet aromatics and fruity esters dominate the flavor with each sip bringing a different experience. The alcohol is definitely present, but no surprise for being 12%. (4.75)

M - Relatively full mouthfeel with very lively carbonation helping to keeps the alcohol rather subdued but a warming sensation occurs in the chest after each sip. (4.75)

O - Both big and bold beers, Stille Nacht and Dulle Teve are quite similar to my palate, but give the nod to the former. Although I would really enjoy sampling this (as well as Dulle Teve) fresh, Stille Nacht holds up quite well for ~1 year and assume it will develop in the coming years with that "Rummy" profile taking center stage. I enjoy what it currently offers so I will err on the side of consuming now, rather than aging. Price and availability are what make this beer such an infrequent treat. (4.5)

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Photo of captaincoffee
4.24/5  rDev +2.9%
look: 4.25 | smell: 4 | taste: 4.5 | feel: 3.75 | overall: 4.25

Pours amber gold with a touch of haze. Big head that leaves some lace. Nose is typical Belgian strong pale with both malt and yeast notes along with some booze. Not as big as I expected. Flavor is certainly big. High ABV not hidden and comes with lots of fruity malts. Residual sugars and a creamy mouthfeel, although the carb as so high it foamed in the mouth which hurt mouthfeel scores. Overall, a very good beer, but I'm not scoring it quite as high as many others do here.

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Photo of flyingpig
4.25/5  rDev +3.2%
look: 4.75 | smell: 4 | taste: 4.25 | feel: 4 | overall: 4.5

330ml bottle from Whole Foods Market, Giffnock (£4.36):
This one was an excellent beer from De Dolle & came through with almost everything that I've come to expect from big, bold Belgian beers. There was a lot of flavour packed into this one & some good spice as well with a combination of yeast & citrus flavours opening things up & rich fruits following them up. It was a very well-balanced & easy to drink beer despite its strength & it's definitely up there with some of the best the country brews; great stuff.

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Photo of keithmurray
3.63/5  rDev -11.9%
look: 4 | smell: 3.5 | taste: 3.75 | feel: 3.5 | overall: 3.5

2015 Vintage poured into tulip glass

Appearance - murky golden body with fluffy white head, lots of sediment floating around

Smell - pear, booze, orange, honey

Taste - pear, peach, orange, booze

Mouthfeel - full bodied, medium plus carbonation, citrus upfront followed by heavy flavor of booze, solvent like finish

Overall - decent beer here that doesnt do a good job of masking the ABV

Price Point - $5.99/11.2 oz bottle

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Photo of GreesyFizeek
4.82/5  rDev +17%
look: 4.5 | smell: 5 | taste: 4.75 | feel: 5 | overall: 4.75

Bottle purchased and drank at Novare Res in Portland, ME.

This one pours a hazy golden orange, with a small head, and just a bit of lacing.

Smells like honey, orange, peach, apricot, candy sugar, and caramelized sugar.

This has completely redefined my idea of this style- a style that's nearly never excited me before now. It's nearly flawless, and suprisingly dry/balanced for being a whopping 12% ABV. The alcohol does not show itself, really at all. It's got a great fruit flavor, without any fruit added, a sort of peach creamsicle thing, some apricot, soft sugar coated pear, earthy and not so sweet honey. There's a bit of sweet caramel, and some slight grassy hoppiness. This is so complex, and so astonishingly good. It made my night that much better.

This has light feel to it, the perfect level of carbonation, light, but present, and propping everything up- keeping this from being syrupy.

This is hands down one of the best beers I've ever had. It's unbelievable.

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Photo of Flickerdart
2.77/5  rDev -32.8%
look: 3.25 | smell: 1.75 | taste: 3 | feel: 3.5 | overall: 3

This beer smells and tastes like dirty gym socks. The head is huge and lacing is good, but that doesn't forgive the smell (socks) and taste (malty socks).

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Photo of Beginner2
3.96/5  rDev -3.9%
look: 3.75 | smell: 4 | taste: 4 | feel: 3.75 | overall: 4

The "Mad Brewers" are taking their toll on me !
I've Had 7 of their 8 brews and the 8th very few also have Had.
So what is to be made of these mad ones.
First of all, it is a good and funny act. Are they mad? Of course not ! They are just having fun.
Second, they make very interesting beers, of which Stille Nacht is one.
Winter blondes... well, that is an unusual Look.
The Smell also is hard to describe, but clearly different.
Taste really has more of the same, but has more going on and is hard to unravel.
Feel improves as the high carbonation dissipates.
Overall, Stille Nacht is worth having again ... just so I know I've not gone mad.

MJ's "Guide" gave it only 3 of 4 stars a claret-colored Christmas brew with hints of apple."
Listed on the "1001", the review is interesting description of how yeast makes the Belgian and how to improve it. Stille Nacht deserves to be on the list for many reasons; but the primary one being that it is interesting without really being mad.

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Photo of pants678
4.02/5  rDev -2.4%
look: 4.25 | smell: 3.5 | taste: 4.25 | feel: 4.25 | overall: 4

10 year old 2006 vintage.

Amberish gold with white foam.

Bread, biscuit, yeast.

Sugary, as you expect with a Belgian Pale. Surprisingly sweet for the age. No wood or barrel, or signs of sour but very, very midly. Something more refined than Pranqster.

Felt right.

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Photo of bowzer4birdie
4.32/5  rDev +4.9%
look: 3.75 | smell: 4.25 | taste: 4.5 | feel: 4.25 | overall: 4.25

Picked up a 2014 bottle from my favorite "to-go" place, Beermiscuous! Poured into my Delirium Tremens snifter. Excellent head and retention. Great nose! Smells like boozy cotton candy or banana bubble gum.

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Photo of amano_h
4.81/5  rDev +16.7%
look: 4.75 | smell: 5 | taste: 4.75 | feel: 4.75 | overall: 4.75

2005 vintage, 37.5cl bottle at Cafe Kulminator (Antwerpen, Belgium)

First impression on the nose is cotton candy. A further inquiry reveals some sour apple, estery Belgian yeast goodness and you guessed it, candi sugar.

Dark fruit flavors headline the sweetness overflow, followed by raisins and a ton of mild caramel. Every sip simply screams "sweet" but there's just enough balance to prevent the average drinker from regurgitating it from disgust; if you try really really hard you can still get a hint of bitterness from what hops used to be present.

Thick, syrupy oily consistency, almost as if I'm drinking a bourbon barrel-aged stout. The booziness is well-hidden and there is no booze afterburn to speak of, but any time a drink taste this sweet, you just know it's hiding a massive amount of alcohol. Carbonation is almost non-existent at this point but I am still picking up some tingling on the tongue.

A divinely balanced cotton candy beer would be my one-line description for this beer. Sweet, complex, 12% ABV cotton candy.

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Photo of freneticamnesic
4.66/5  rDev +13.1%
look: 4.25 | smell: 4.5 | taste: 4.75 | feel: 4.75 | overall: 4.75

Had on bottle at Cafe DeRat in Utrecht, NL.

A - Pours yellowy gold with a huge white head; pour carefully!
S - Foral hops, citrus, fresh bread and honey
T - Honey, bread, caramel, burned malts and finishing slightly bitter and spiced
M - Very very smooth, good amount of carbonation
O - Very very nice winter beer tending more towards golden honey and bread flavours than the darker caramel flavours of many others.

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Photo of barczar
4.13/5  rDev +0.2%
look: 4 | smell: 4 | taste: 4.5 | feel: 3.25 | overall: 4

Peach, pear, and green apple esters emerge in aroma. There's a hint of earthy hops.

Flavor is very sweet, candy-like, with pear carrying through into a lightly bready backbone. Alcohol is substantial, and both tasted and felt. Green apple and apricot tartness prevent it from becoming cloying. Could use some age to kill the heat.

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Photo of pat61
4.79/5  rDev +16.3%
look: 5 | smell: 4.75 | taste: 4.75 | feel: 5 | overall: 4.75

A: pours a hazy copper gold with a persistent very creamy and stiff, fluffy and lumpy 1 ½” foam collar that mounds up over the top of the glass.
S: Yeasty, fruit, over ripe fruit, bread, spice.
T: Big fruit flavors suggesting a blend of apricot, peach, citrus and something tropical sweetened with light caramel. There are big hops in the background but every thing else is big so it balances.
M: Highly carbonated, luxuriously creamy, satiating, medium full body.
O: An extravagant beer that hides its alcohol well.

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Photo of StonedTrippin
4.33/5  rDev +5.1%
look: 4.25 | smell: 4.25 | taste: 4.25 | feel: 4.5 | overall: 4.5

i have a beer friend, whom i have not known for an extraordinarily long time, but who's opinion i respect very much. he regards de dolle as the best brewery in the world, and the stille nacht their best beer. thats high praise from anyone, especially him, so at long last, i finally get to drink one of these. on tap at the bull and bush, a real treat once the server got it right. hazy and quite pale in the glass. not sure why i expected it to be darker, but its cloudy but bright, not thick at all, almost delicate looking, and not that abv ever has a look, but this looks too light for 12% abv. head is thick as shaving cream but not as white, it stands tall like beaten eggs ready to be folded into a cake batter. it smells unexpected as well, hoppy, but only really as far as the belgians ever take it in that regard, less bitter, more leafy grassy, and fully yeasty. it smells tart like good lemonade, but still with that estery belgian yeast fruitiness and complexity. there is a hair in me that thinks this has some wild in it, not pitched bacteria, but some wild strain that got worked in one way or another. very complex, and unique to my nose. the taste is the same, new but enticing, taunting almost. the hype around this one, which is more internal in my circle than external i think, maybe not, had this one highly anticipated, and first sip shows why. that tartness is there in the finish, with even a moderate acidity. usually the strong belgians, especially the tripel types, the pale ones, have tons of sugars added for extra fermentables, or such a high original gravity as to never quite get dried out enough for my tastes. not this one, and that is its immediate success for me. its dry, but its huge, but its delicate and rich, its a bunch of caucophanous juxtapositions that resolve in beautiful synchronicity. splendid. lemon is there, straw, hay, clover, plantain, white pepper, mild brett, even decaying forest floor. this is wonderful beer, not fully understood but entirely appreciated. is it the best beer i have ever had, i dont think so no, but it is something to be revered and treasured, and there is nothing else like it.

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Photo of dar482
3.87/5  rDev -6.1%
look: 4 | smell: 3.75 | taste: 3.75 | feel: 4.25 | overall: 4

The aroma offers Belgian quality up front with spice, sweet and honeyed breadiness.

The flavor follows with that same Belgian spicy note, surrounded by tiny bubbled carbonation. Then onto caramel sweetness and a bready note.

A touch sweet, but the alcohol is quite well hidden. (2009 vintage).

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Photo of Takahiro
3.15/5  rDev -23.5%
look: 2.75 | smell: 3.25 | taste: 3.25 | feel: 3 | overall: 3

Look: opaque, tan/brown, with thin but lasting foam
Smell: Belgian yeast (yogurty), caramel, clovy phenol
Taste: strawberry and tropical fruit punch up front. caramel sweetness. slight bitterness from hops towards middle/finish.
Feel: bit cloying, but not too much
Overall: it's a belgian beer, with lots of fruitiness.

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Photo of RonaldTheriot
4.69/5  rDev +13.8%
look: 4.5 | smell: 4.75 | taste: 4.75 | feel: 4.25 | overall: 4.75

De Dolle Stille Nacht has a very active, overflowing white head, a murky, gold-gray-yellow, bubbly appearance, and heavy lacing left on the glass. The aroma is of light fruits, candy, white bread, and cream cheese cake frosting. Taste is similar, with low bitterness and noticeable bitterness. Mouthfeel is medium, and De Dolle Stille Nacht finishes semi-dry and boozy.


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Photo of interzen
4.7/5  rDev +14.1%
look: 4.5 | smell: 4.5 | taste: 4.75 | feel: 4.5 | overall: 5

Look: Cloudy yellow with a white head with incredible amounts of staying power. Significant amount of yeast and other floaty bits too. Then again, it's unfiltered, unpasteurised and un-justabout everything else.

Smell: Slightly sour with hints of fruit and spice - quite hard to pin down anything in particular, though. Let it sit for a while and you'll get faint whiffs of alcohol too. It smells strange, but by no means unpleasant.

Taste: It might smell slightly sour, but it certainly doesn't taste sour. Quite sugary-tasting, with malts and yeast to the fore. Slightly bitter and boozy aftertaste. Again, it's quite difficult to pin down any one dominant flavour although I suspect I might have served it a bit too cold.

Feel: As others have noted, this is definitely a sippin' beer - the sweetness gives it a fairly heavy feel and there's not a massive amount of carbonation either. It certainly doesn't drink like something on a par, ABV-wise, with wine ...

Overall: I'm glad this is a winter beer, since if it were available all year round I'd be drinking rather a lot of it and end up pickling myself in the process. It is, I suspect, rather an acquired taste - a sweet tooth certainly helps as it's quite sugary and heavy. That said, it's well worth tracking down and trying if the chance presents itself. Definitely worth taking your time over (especially at 12% ABV!)

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Photo of dcmchew
3.72/5  rDev -9.7%
look: 3.5 | smell: 4 | taste: 3.75 | feel: 3 | overall: 3.75

Pours golden, really cloudy, with a small lasting white head.
Surprisingly weird smelling for a Winter beer, with some big sour notes, not entirely reminding of lambics, but of fermenting white grape, apple and apricot, or more like a rustic-made white wine. Some candi sugar, licorice, clove, orange and lemon lozenges, faint gingerbread, funky yeasts and some warm alcohol.
Monstrously huge sweet (sugary!) malts, somewhat escalating from the front to the aftertaste. So does the alcohol. Hard to discern anything else under the heaviness of the sugary malt and alcohol combo. Some faint apricot, fresh orange peel and apple lingering, dense Belgian yeasts, gingerbread spices (peppercorn shines). Finishes mouth-numbing, somewhat bitter and syrupy.
Thick body, low to medium carbonation. Must sip! Aftertaste has alcohol, candi sugar, some clearer fruitiness manages to settle. In time the semi-dry white wine feel from the smell becomes more apparent in the (after)taste, but there's still so much sugar!
Didn't expect such a BIG beer (tho, 12%). Tasty, but a sweet-tooth is imperative, strong, so take some time with it. Hard to rate.

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Photo of Ciocanelu
3.5/5  rDev -15%
look: 3 | smell: 3.5 | taste: 3.5 | feel: 3.75 | overall: 3.5

Review from notes. Hazy amber color with off-white head. Aroma has classic belgian esters but also some zestiness. Taste leans towards sweet with the belgian yeasty character and warming alcohol. Body is not as carbonated as other belgian strong ales but it doesn't help the drinkability too much. The strong alcohol presence is enough to make it a slow sipper.

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Photo of aleigator
2.5/5  rDev -39.3%

Bottle from Marlou Genk , bottled 2012. Has a deep, hazy yellow appearance with a yellowish head, which vanishes fast.

Aroma is of strong alcohol, differents spices, including clove and cinnamon, and yeast.

Taste of this brew is complex, alcohol is present from the very beginning and lingers till the end. Very yeasty, lots of spices on my tongue, cinnamon, clove, pepper, burned malt, sugar, honey and a little bitterness at the end, which enhances the sweetness of the sugar. Long aftertaste of mostly sugar and alcohol. In my opinion they push it too far, the beer appears unbalanced to me, sugar and alcohol are too present, they dominate all the other ingredients and interrupt the possible complexity.

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Photo of SassieCassie
5/5  rDev +21.4%

Served in a tulip glass

Appearance: Dark golden brown/ hazy color little head retention which was concerning at first...
Nose: The nose displays a nice burnt caramel/ malt flavor with a subtle hint of ethanol and that Belgium flare
Taste: Appropriate carbonation. Thick, creamy, and slightly sweet (like a thicker version of a hardy brown ale) with subtle earthy hops at the end that play with the sweetness. I was expecting more of an ethanol flavor because of the high ABV, but was surprised to find it balanced and hidden.

What a beautiful Belgium beer!

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De Dolle Stille Nacht from Brouwerij De Dolle Brouwers
4.12 out of 5 based on 1,042 ratings.
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