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De Dolle Stille Nacht | Brouwerij De Dolle Brouwers

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De Dolle Stille NachtDe Dolle Stille Nacht
BA SCORE
4.18/5
Exceptional
1,056 Ratings
De Dolle Stille NachtDe Dolle Stille Nacht
BEER INFO

Brewed by:
Brouwerij De Dolle Brouwers
Belgium
dedollebrouwers.be

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

BEER STATS
Ranking:
#1,302
Reviews:
517
Ratings:
1,056
pDev:
11.72%
Bros Score:
4.74
 
 
Wants:
122
Gots:
150
Trade:
7
HISTOGRAM
 
User Ratings & Reviews
Sort by:  Recent | High | Low | Top Raters | Alström Bros
Ratings: 1,056 |  Reviews: 517
Photo of shortsqueeze
4.97/5  rDev +18.9%
look: 4.5 | smell: 5 | taste: 5 | feel: 5 | overall: 5

Could be the finest beer I've had this year. Near perfection. My only complaint is the lack of sustained head, otherwise it's a perfect 100 points.

2009 Bottling

A: Gorgeous burnt orange with a lacy white head that dissipated quickly after pouring. Yeast visible.

S: Sublime. Orange zest and figs.

T: Complexity beyond comprehension and reason. Honey, caramel, brown sugar then orange zest and candied orange peel. Figs, apricots and other dark fruits. The perfect harmony of bitter and sweet. An amazingly long finish I could still taste it hours later.

M: If you could imagine liquid silk, or cashmere. Perfect viscosity neither cloying nor thin in the mouth.

D: You know you are drinking something enormous and you want to savor every last drop. The alcohol plays its role beautifully and in perfect balance with every other component. I'm not sure I'd pair this with food. It should be enjoyed on a stage by itself.

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Photo of HagueBrook
4.55/5  rDev +8.9%
look: 4.5 | smell: 4.5 | taste: 4.5 | feel: 5 | overall: 4.5

Poured from a bottle into a burgundy-style wine glass (I need some Belgian beer glasses, but for now I need to improvise, adapt and overcome).

A: Poured nicely with a 1" head that dissipated after about 5 minutes to just a small head with nice lacing. The beer is a gorgeous burnt-caramel color, slightly cloudy.

S: Great aroma with a wonderful sweet yeast smell. You get sweet raisins in the nose.

T: Fabulous taste, with a slightly sweet taste (again with the raisins and also dates).

M: Not too heavy with the perfect amount of carbonation. The finish was almost coating my mouth.

D: Opened two bottles at once--one for me and one for the missus. She did not like it ("where is my St. Bernardus Abt 12?"), so I got both 11.5 oz bottles. Feeling pretty good halfway through the 2nd bottle, but that's probably my limit. I would not want to drink more than two, as it's too sweet. Almost better as an after dinner beer.

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Photo of SFLpunk
3.91/5  rDev -6.5%
look: 5 | smell: 4 | taste: 4 | feel: 3.5 | overall: 3.5

11.2oz brown glass pry-top bottle. Cap stamped 2010.

Pours a pale orange gold with slight hazing and thick creamy white head that grips the glass unmercifully.

Nose is light and earthy, like a field of hay in late autumn. A little dirt, a little hay, something floral wafting on the breeze. I know I'm being a little too poetic tonight.

Palate is sharp at first with some alcohol bite, but that gives way to the leafy, dry, herbal hops. Floral is perhaps the best way to describe the palate. Some hints of wild flower honey and dried herbs. Finish is somewhat bitter, but this will probably drop out after about a year of aging.

Notes: Think this is mislabeled as a Belgian Strong Dark. It's incredibly pale...

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Photo of mdfb79
3.8/5  rDev -9.1%
look: 4.5 | smell: 4.5 | taste: 3.5 | feel: 3.5 | overall: 3.5

Poured from an 11.2 oz. bottle into my Duvel tulip. 2010 vintage.

a - Pours a murky dark orange color with moderate carbonation evident and two plus fingers of fluffy off white head. Head lasts for 5-6 minutes, and leaves some nice lacing on the glass.

s - Smells of Belgian yeast, spices, cloves, fruity malts, very slight banana, and light sweet fruit/sugar.

t - Tastes of figs, dark fruits, bananas, yeast, light spice, and alcohol. Alcohol is a little too prominent and a major step down from the nose.

m - Medium body and moderate carbonation. Pretty smooth body, but a little warmth at the end due to the high ABV.

d - Overall this is a nice Belgian dark, but the alcohol shines through a bit too much. I loved the smell and it looked great, but the taste and alcohol warmth knocked it down a bit. Would have again but wouldn't go through any hassel to buy. Maybe I'll pick one up for the cellar.

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Photo of Dreadnaught33
3.95/5  rDev -5.5%
look: 4 | smell: 4 | taste: 4.5 | feel: 3.5 | overall: 3

Poured into Snifter, 2009 vintage.

A: Muddy looking brownish color with orange to yellow highlights, opaque all the way through. Nice legs, and a small white head.

S: Ripe dark fruit and banana, a definite alcohol sweetness and heat backed up by spicy malts. A little hint of fruit like pineapple comes through as well in that its a sweet yet a little bitter/tart.

T: Very complex flavor with notes of plum, sugary malts, bitter-hot alcohol back on the palate, banana, wheaty cereal notes, and definitely the pineapple I got in the smell. Nice beer thats certain a complex sipper.

M: This was a little hot with the alcohol, (even with over a year of age), but pretty smooth and decent carbonation levels.

D: This is too big to have one of these alone, in my opinion. I enjoyed the beer, but getting through the whole bottle myself was semi difficult. A nice beer that I'll have to get again and age for years and years before cracking it open.

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Photo of CuriousMonk
3.7/5  rDev -11.5%
look: 4 | smell: 4 | taste: 3.5 | feel: 4 | overall: 3.5

Poured from a 11.2oz bottle into a tulip. Cap shows this beer was bottled in 2008. Been wanting to try this winter warmer for some time now. The beer pours orange amber with a great big low-density foamy head which lasted pretty much throughout leaving nice laces every sip. The aroma is complex - sweet malt, white candy, and a hint of tangerine fill out the fruit flavors; leather and wood lend a certain sophistication to the nose; strong caramel hints at a sweet beer to follow with the first sip. Alcohol is abundant in the aroma, especially early on. The flavor, nearly three years in, is very nice. Somewhat sweet but not overly so, dark caramel and baked apples before the taste twists nicely and plenty early into well-hopped finish. Pepper and again some leather add interest midway, along with a cognac and golden raisins perhaps. Unfortunately, the aggressive carbonation and a ton of sediments detracts from the mouthfeel, making this beer - which seems otherwise perfect for savoring on the tongue - hard to drink in that way. The alcohol is predominant, which is understandable, for 12% ABV. I came to this beer with high hopes, and I'm not disappointed. It loses a few points on the palate - I'm not big on beer with heavy sediments floating around. It was an interesting experience now that I've had two De Dolle beers - seems like their beers have a tendency to bang out big foamy heads and complex flavors worth deliberating over.

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Photo of beerpirates
4/5  rDev -4.3%
look: 4 | smell: 4 | taste: 4 | feel: 4 | overall: 4

2009 bottle , poured in to my lost abbey stemware glass

pours a nice slightly amber gold with thick white head, decent lacing, left most of the yeast in bottom of bottle to try later. Flavour is of yeast, slight hops, sweet malt, banana, sugar, and some fruity esters. Flavor matches well, but is a bit too sweet for my liking. Alcohol was pretty well hidden, but obviously still there. Pretty decent,

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Photo of WeedKing4
4.31/5  rDev +3.1%
look: 5 | smell: 4 | taste: 4 | feel: 4.5 | overall: 5

Pours a hazy, dark orange with lots of little floaties swirling around. Just beautiful. Tastes of sweet candi sugars with a hint of fruits like apple and pear. I think this bottle is lying when it says its 12% alc. That is ridiculous. Very easy to drink and I am detecting no hotness at all to this. Very tasty treat. Rock on De Dolle!

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Photo of SpeedwayJim
3.55/5  rDev -15.1%
look: 4.5 | smell: 4.5 | taste: 3 | feel: 4 | overall: 3

Thanks to Jon (capra12) for this one. Bottled on 10/09. Poured from a 11.2oz bottle into a Darkness snifter.

A: Pours a 2.5 finger foamy white head with moderate retention. Beer is a clear, dark orange-peach. Actually one of the paler BSDAs I've seen. Lacing is patchy and thick with very good cling.

S: Nose is heavily fruity and sweet with a signature Belgian yeast strain. Clove, prunes, plums, figs, and booze with a touch of cane sugar sweetness. Aromatic, pleasant, and appropriate.

T: Opens fruity. Grape, plum, and figs. Very sweet and boozy with a distinct ethanol build-up towards the middle. Cane sugar sweetness throughout. Clove and other spices at the end. Sweet, maple syrup finish with an ethanol aftertaste.

M: Medium bodied with moderate carbonation. Smooth and silky in the mouth with some roughness due to the bubbles. Warming going down with an accented finish and a lingering aftertaste.

D: Overall, way too sweet and alcoholic. Although this one isn't hot in the traditional sense, the ethanol taste is a bit overwhelming at times. Would love to try one with a bit more age on it to see if it mellows out, but as is, decent but a bit underwhelming.

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Photo of wethorseblanket
4.2/5  rDev +0.5%
look: 4 | smell: 4 | taste: 4.5 | feel: 4 | overall: 4

Thanks to Dan for this one.

Pours a hazy, dark amberish golden with an initial solid white head which fades to bubbles around the edges of the glass. Smell is a nice combination of dried fruit skins (grapes, plums), honey sweetness, bready yeast, malty spice, and a faint woody essence. Some alcohol heat is present too. Taste is boozy dark fruits, carmel, brown sugar, with a yeasty mild sour finish. Mouthfeel is slick and oily and rich. Overall, a sipper for a cool winter night.

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Photo of silentjay
3.93/5  rDev -6%
look: 4 | smell: 3.5 | taste: 4 | feel: 4.5 | overall: 4

a hazy orange brown with a huge, dense cloud white head that forces me to pour this in stages.

a touch metallic with tons of raisin and sweetened dried fruits and a subtle spice.

flavor of sweetened dried fruits come first with plenty of booze. a dry almost honey-like sweetness counters the subtle peppery and herbal spiciness.

relatively thick on the tongue with a nice light prickly carbonation that is perfect for the style.

drinks slowly, yet well. a huge beer, but with enough flavor and nuances that you want to sip and savor for a while.

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Photo of ms11781
4.29/5  rDev +2.6%
look: 3.5 | smell: 4.5 | taste: 4.5 | feel: 4 | overall: 4

2009 Vintage. Cap says Bottled OCT2009 12%ABV. Poured from a 12oz bottle into a tulip glass.

Pours a cloudy, orange, brown color with a 1 finger off white head that dissipates quickly leaving a thing ring around the glass. Despite a slow, careful pour there is dark sediment throughout the beer.

Smells very sweet at first, sugary, sweet malts and a variety of fruit. A bit of alcohol on the end of the nose. The alcohol isn't all that strong but the overall aroma is huge.

Taste is also very sweet up front, almost sugary. Very fruity, some dark (cherries), some light (green apple). Some caramel at some points. I also get some brown sugar and cinnamon. Slight warming from the alcohol at the end. Really very complex with what seems like new tastes in each sip.

Lively carbonation feels a bit prickly in the mouth, but smooths out at the end. Medium to heavy body due to an almost syrup like quality.

A good beer to sit down with for an extended period to best take in all it has to offer. At 12% ABV it's going to be a sipper anyway. One and done, but really what isn't at an ABV that high?

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Photo of Bitterbill
3.93/5  rDev -6%
look: 4.5 | smell: 4 | taste: 4 | feel: 4 | overall: 3.5

Bottled 2010.

It pours a cloudy dark orange with a 2 finger head of foam and brilliant lacing.

It smells lemon kind of hoppy, spicy, and mildly of Brett. Cloves peek out from time to time.

The taste is all sorts of varied. I taste orange peel, light to medium cloves, candi sugar, a very light Brett like funkiness that probably isn't *really* there but it seems to be. Lots and lots of alcohol warming. It's very tasty but very hot.

Full bodied with a fairly light amount of carbonation resulting in a smooth mouth feel.

Drinkability is hurt by the massive alcohol kick but the flavours are anything but uninteresting. Me likes a lot.

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Photo of wisrarebeer
4/5  rDev -4.3%
look: 4 | smell: 4 | taste: 4 | feel: 4 | overall: 4

Bottled 2008.

Cellar temp and opened carefully but still mild gushing.

A: amber color with a lot of chunky bits in suspension - nice rocky head
S: very nice Belgium trippel nose, yeast, clean, effervescent from CO2
T: clean, crisp, a bit sweet but nice, reminded me of a trippel, well-made
M: nice and rounded, good velvety feel
D: drinkable but not too at the ABV level

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Photo of crossovert
4.52/5  rDev +8.1%
look: 4 | smell: 4.5 | taste: 5 | feel: 4 | overall: 4

2006 vintage, 12%abv.

It pours a deep reddish brow with a large rocky white head that leaves just a few spots of lacing.

The smell is sweet and seductive. Rich dark fruits dominate, it is reminiscent of a Belgian Quadrupel. It has the scent of red grapes, plums, dark cherries, and red delicious apple. There is a nice candied toffee scent and some spiciness as well.

This one is a sipper, whew. The first drink i quaffed a bit too much of it and it was overpowering. But all in all it is classic Quadrupel. It has layers of flavor starting with a nice bit of tart fruits, then going into a malty and dark bread middle, then it has a kick of fruitiness near the finish with some cherries, and it finishes with a waring alcoholic/sweet pungency. The flavor is soo rich. There is a big alcoholicness and sweetness, but the yeast provides a killer fruitiness that is just accented immensely by the alcohol and caramally sugar.

The mouthfeel is almost juicy, it is such a fruity beer that it reminds me of sparkling juice. It is a very nice mouthfeel actually.

This is an epic beer, I have seen it on the shelf for years now, I am glad I bought it finally.

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Photo of biegaman
3.9/5  rDev -6.7%
look: 4 | smell: 4 | taste: 4 | feel: 4 | overall: 3.5

Even the most methodical pour could not avoid the plague of yeast particles: Welcome to Stille Nacht. 'Floaties', as they are affectionately known, pollute the beer to a supreme level of turbidity, a camouflage-like print that inlays the beer's lustrous and deep golden complexion. The glass is like one giant suspended blizzard with additional snowfall atop.

Its tart and terribly musty aroma has a sharp vinegar-y tang and exudes notes of rotten apples and pear. It deserves full marks for its strong character and distinctness, but whether it's actually appealing I've yet to be so sure of. The musk of dried citrus peel suggests it is while spicy alcohol vapors convey it as being more intimidating than anything.

By extension, its flavour is also both bold and distinct. White crackers macerated in plum brandy underlie a flavour reminiscent of an apple cider that has been heavily sweetened and mulled with spices. Fruits - or, rather, the essence of fruits - come and go by way of alcohol esters while its yeast remains steadily fixed in high gear throughout.

A beer this spicy, sweet and potent is difficult to drink in any way other than slow savoring; it's likely not many peoples' idea of an 'everyday occasion' kind of drink. That trifecta of spice-sugar-alcohol, while impressive, is a lot to take in altogether and I have to race with the 12% alcohol to try and get to the bottom of the glass before it get's to me.

Its vigorous quirks and steamroller strength are exactly what make the beer so deserving of its notoriety as a classic Christmas time tipple. Its savory spiciness and warming qualities are perfectly suited to the festivities of the holidays and stashing a few of these in the cellar for future Christmases is indeed a wonderful gift to give yourself.

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Photo of 05Harley
4.32/5  rDev +3.3%
look: 4 | smell: 4.5 | taste: 4.5 | feel: 4 | overall: 4

Bottled in 2008

Purchased @ Julio's Liquors, Westborough, Mass.

Price - $6.99

Appearance: Holy shit, popped the cap and a gusher flowed, wow!! Big head of foam with sediment everywhere. Lite copper color with a creamy head and sticky lacing which decorates the drinking vessel. Be careful pouring this one. I've had this in the fridge for about a week with no movement and still it erupted like Mount ST. Helens.

Smell: Candy sugar with apples, cinnamon spices and honey. A hint of yeast and booze. A strong steady nose through the end.

Tast: Yup, Belgian for sure. Candy sugar, caramel and hard apple cider. You would think from the aroma it would be cloying but the sweetness is cut off with a perfect balance of hop bitterness.

Mouthfeel: Medium body with a warm, dry, bitter finish. The carbonation is a bit much but does settle down.

Drinkability: Alone one maybe two is plenty, after all it is 12%. It's a beer I have in my Christmas line up each year and one I look forward to.

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Photo of AndyAvalanche
4.74/5  rDev +13.4%
look: 3.5 | smell: 4.5 | taste: 5 | feel: 4.5 | overall: 5

12 oz. bottle that has a unique label to it. I can't tell if it's a snowman king or or a snowman wizard type thing. It's a snowman smiling with a beer in one hand, wearing a crown and scarf and has a star wand in the other hand. Weird, but who am I to judge. Poured into a Duvel Tulip style glass. The beer is a golden red color that is CLEARLY unfiltered. Huge chunks of yeast floating all about the liquid. There is a creamy orange colored type head that comes out and appears as it if would have good lacing because it started so big. The 2 finger head eventually goes away but each sip provides good glass retention and it SLOWLY trickles back down, it doesn't permanently stick to the glass but still looks pretty good.

Smells very good, sweet and winter spicy. Orange peel, cinnamon, dehydrated dark fruits, as well as some holiday liquor aromas that all blend together nicely. Not a strong hop presence, like most Belgian styles.

The taste is as perfect as it gets. Much like the smell, winter spicy with some sweetness, and a little sour/tart too. Cinnamon, with some citrus peels, dehydrated (dark) fruits, a little nutty, and some liquor flavors (maybe brandy?). There also may hae been some cranberries, I cant quite figure out the tart/sour flavor, but it all meshes together very well, extremely tasty.

Mouthfeel and drinkability are very good. It's diverse, I'd say medium to full bodied. Even though it's unfiltered ti doesn't leave that yeasty feeling in your mouth that bad that many of this style do. This beer is technically a winter style but could really be used as a year round beverage in my opinion. I'm not a fan of this style, but I found this beer to be absolutely wonderful.

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Photo of GDBEERMAN
4.32/5  rDev +3.3%
look: 4 | smell: 4.5 | taste: 4.5 | feel: 4 | overall: 4

11.4oz bottle into 8oz snifter: Bottled - October 2009.
A: A very slow pour, brings a nice and and frothy white head. The retention is held for the long haul. A deep orange body, a thick depth of haze and a steady carbonation stream. Lacing is left is circular
S: A strong oak presence, that has a good big of boozy notes as well. The undertones of malt thickness and floral hop character define quality Belgian products.
T/M: The full bodied mouthfeel meets you with a bright burst of flavors from malt on the front to a smooth note of citrus hops. A strong and prolonged warming to the body. A strong orange note on the finish, a very smooth well rounded brew.
D: Of the many different brews there is for the winter season, I like this one in the Belgian Strong Dark ale. For an all around everyday brew, this might be one I would get for a good goto strong ale.

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Photo of sitarist
3.9/5  rDev -6.7%
look: 4 | smell: 4 | taste: 4 | feel: 4 | overall: 3.5

bottled Oct,2009.

Pours a cloudy honey color. The head is white and falls quick leaving a ring, and a few spots of lacing. A few tiny bubbles rise up slowly.

Strong aromas fill the air. I smell overripe fruits, toffee, caramel, and booze. It is sweet and very strong. Reminds me of a fruitcake.

Rumcake with pecans, and walnuts is what comes to mind when I first tasted this. Punch-like, or maybe like a punch to the face. Sweet, fruity, boozy, nutty, a slightly spicy...it has a toffee aftertaste.

Full body with some carbonation somewhere in there. It is thick, but for something with such a huge body it dries fast.

Its a slow sipper, and one is enough. There is way too much going on to enjoy several.

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Photo of Beerenauslese
4.2/5  rDev +0.5%
look: 4 | smell: 4 | taste: 4.5 | feel: 4 | overall: 4

Bottle cap has printed on it: bottled October 2009. 12% Alc. Stored in my cellar a year.

Pours a clear amber gold with a creamy tan head that lasts awhile, leaving some lacing.

Smells of malt, candi/brown sugar, and tropical fruit. A bit like a fruit punch.

Taste follows the nose with sweet malt and tropical fruits, then a spicy mid-palate, ending with a drier, quite gingery finish. A highly ramped up golden ale/tripel style beer.

Body is medium and carbonation is mild. Has a soda-like spritziness but a somewhat flattish mouthfeel.

This is a big beer, the flavor is intense and spicy, and the alcohol is high. A beer to be reserved for special occasions.

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Photo of rarbring
4.27/5  rDev +2.2%
look: 3.5 | smell: 4 | taste: 4.5 | feel: 4 | overall: 4.5

The brew is foggy orange/brown, an off-white large head, good curtains, some lacing.

The smell is sweet, dextrose, sour cream, fruits, peaches, some yeast .

The taste is sweet, syrup, tropical fruits, a cream sherry.

High carbonation, very fizzy, a full body, oily and smooth.

A very nice and fulfilling beer, perfect after dinner, with the cheese. 2008 Vintage.

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Photo of Cmack15
4.37/5  rDev +4.5%
look: 4 | smell: 4.5 | taste: 4.5 | feel: 4.5 | overall: 4

Wow the mad brewers do know how to make some great beers. The yeast is the star of the show as most Belgian beers are and it does not dissapoint. The 12% alcohol is well balanced in this beer, meaning you feel its presence but it is not in your face. Reallly excellent well crafted brew, Enjoy.

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Photo of jampics2
2.72/5  rDev -34.9%
look: 2.5 | smell: 3 | taste: 3 | feel: 2.5 | overall: 2

11.2oz bottle into a pint glass  @ The Winking Lizard.  2009 vintage.    

I have a love/hate relationship with DeDolle beers.  I find many of them to be too unbalanced and hot, but a few have been great.  This takes the cake as hands-down the worst of the bunch, starting with the appearance. Good god this looks like mud in a glass.  I poured it carefully but still it came out like mud - super dirty.  The beer is brown with no head.  No lace.  A disappointing start.  

Stille Nacht smells like bubblegum and booze.  Some banana and cotton candy are also noted.  The beer is pretty expressive, but the booze just kills me.  There are some fruity notes like peach and apricot, and a touch of butter.  But, overall, this is like a shot of vodka poured into a nice Belgian.  

Holy smokes.  This is the heaviest, hottest beer ever.  Booze, booze, booze.  Cotton candy.  Booze and some sugary malt afterwards. A touch of caramel and sugar.  More booze and apricot jam.  God lord, how can anyone drink this shit?  I've had a 5 year bottle and it did calm down a bit, but it was still just way too boozy fresh.  Should these really be sold when they're this green? 

To make matters worse, the mouthfeel is characterized by a flat and syrupy thick liquid.  That's it.  Life is too short to drink bad beer like this and even shorter to write about them.  An utter abomination.  When I type Stille Nacht into google it asks me if I meant Still Nacho.  I wish I did.  Even stillborn nachos would be better than this.

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Photo of mothman
3.97/5  rDev -5%
look: 3.5 | smell: 4 | taste: 4 | feel: 4 | overall: 4

2003 Bottle

Poured into snifter. Pours a light layer of white head. Color is a hazed burnt orange.

Aroma: Big yeast and dried fruit profile. Figs and plum stick out a lot. I also get some Belgian candi sugar. It does show some alcohol. A bit of bready malts and a touch of cereal grain.

Taste: Cereal grain up front. Some dark dried fruits follow. Plums, raisins, oats, and candi sugar. Some bready malts. A touch of booze near the end. Fairly sweet, but not overpowering.

Mouthfeel: Smooth, creamy, and a touch warming. Medium to full bodied with a medium amount of carbonation. Ends a bit dry.

Overall, I really enjoyed this one. It had the right amount of booze showing. It had some solid sweet flavors, but still had a nice malt backbone to even things out. The cereal grain worked well with this beer. I dig it. Decent drinkability.

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De Dolle Stille Nacht from Brouwerij De Dolle Brouwers
Beer rating: 4.18 out of 5 with 1,056 ratings
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