La Mandragore
BFM (Brasserie des Franches-Montagnes)

La MandragoreLa Mandragore
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Strong Ale - Belgian Dark
Ranked #231
Ranked #25,110
3.83 | pDev: 8.36%
BFM (Brasserie des Franches-Montagnes)
Very Good
La MandragoreLa Mandragore
Notes: La Mandragore is our winter black beer, comfortable and rich in taste.
Reviews: 21 | Ratings: 46 | Log in to view all ratings and sort
Reviews by ggaughan:
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ggaughan from Pennsylvania

3.9/5  rDev +1.8%
look: 4 | smell: 4 | taste: 4 | feel: 4 | overall: 3.5

Sampled at the Monk's Cafe BFM tasting. The beer was served in a 11.15 oz swing top bottle. Very nice presentation like all the BFM beers. This beer poured a deep brown color with a thick foamy white head and good lacing. The aroma was intense with coffee and chocolate notes. The description of the beer from the brewere is a "strong dark mild ale for the winter in the Swiss Alps." The taste seems like it was meant for this purpose as you pick up some alochol in the taste but mostly you get spice, a bit of chocolate and tasted malt. Very enjoyable although a bit heavy.

Jun 08, 2006
More User Reviews:
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BKotch from Texas

4/5  rDev +4.4%

Sep 26, 2014
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Phyl21ca from Canada

3.5/5  rDev -8.6%
look: 3.5 | smell: 3.5 | taste: 3.5 | feel: 3.5 | overall: 3.5

Bottle: Poured a pitch-black color ale with a nice foamy head with good retention and minimal lacing. Aroma of honey and light roasted malt notes. Taste is sweeter then expected with less bitter notes then expected and more dry fruits and honey. Body is thinner then what I was expected with some medium carbonation. Interesting and different for sure but not necessarily something I would go for very often.

Jan 02, 2008
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John_M from Oregon

4.25/5  rDev +11%
look: 4 | smell: 4 | taste: 4.5 | feel: 4.5 | overall: 4

On cask, of all things, at Max's today. According to the tap handle, this is the 2007-2008 version of this beer.

The beer pours a fairly dark brown/black color with good head retention and lacing. The nose is fairly simple, albeit still attractive. I get some light coffee, cherry, vanilla and some interesting earthiness. The flavor profile is actually considerably better then the aroma profile, much to my surprise. There is considerable chocolate, light coffee, vanilla, a touch of anise and a hint of booze (which in this case, enhances the flavor profile). Mouthfeel is likewise pretty impressive, with a soft, creamy, plush mouthfeel and a long finish. Drinkability is quite good, with the alcohol barely an afterthought.

Have had this beer on draft before, and can't say I was all that impressed. However, on cask this beer is much more impressive, and is a beer I quite enjoyed.

Jun 10, 2010
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Bov from Switzerland

3.38/5  rDev -11.7%
look: 4 | smell: 3.5 | taste: 3 | feel: 4 | overall: 3.5

bottled, 2004 version - dark black colour with a fast disappearing foam, toasted aroma of black chocolate, a bit oily with a good malt body, some sourness and some bitterness, the finish is dry, coffeish with notes of licorice - better after some troubles with the 2003 version

Jan 15, 2007
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ATLbeerDog from Georgia

4.12/5  rDev +7.6%
look: 4 | smell: 4.5 | taste: 4 | feel: 4 | overall: 4

On Tap at The Brickstore Pub - Pours pitch black with a hefty 1 inch head. Very light lacing clings weakly to the glass. Awesome smells of tart, sour notes, with cherries, raisins, and Belgian yeast dominating. First sip is chocolate with bitter and fruity sour notes. A rather light bodied beer with nice carbonation and mouthfeel. Half Stout - Half Sour...This beer is simply amazing. World Class!

Oct 15, 2008
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Georgiabeer from Georgia

4.2/5  rDev +9.7%
look: 4 | smell: 4 | taste: 4.5 | feel: 4 | overall: 4

On tap at the Brick Store Pub. I like this beer quite a bit on tap- more so than several of this brewery's beers in the bottle. Pours a very dark brown with a head that fades to a thin cap but leaves some decent lacing. Smells sour and oaky, and even a bit woody, but this is restrained. Not unpleasant at all. The taste is pretty funky with some woodiness and borders on the medicinal with overripe fruit. Tannic and brambly. I like this sort of beer, but I could see how it would put some people off. The mouthfeel is tannic and spicy from the wood. Very interesting sour, but getting toward the extreme of the range- like a very ripe cheese, this won't be for everyone.

Jan 14, 2009
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mendvicdog from Maryland

3.75/5  rDev -2.1%

May 17, 2014
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thierrynantes from France

4/5  rDev +4.4%
look: 4 | smell: 4 | taste: 4 | feel: 4 | overall: 4

Beer bottle (33 cl.) purchased from Clem (Nantes) and tasted in 2011.

Appearance : dark red color, with tan foamy head.
Smell : roasted malt and vinous aromas.
Taste and mouthfeel : slightly sour with notes of malt, roasted malt, and coffee.
Drinkability : a good beer in the style Belgian strong Ale. Drink at cellar temperature :-)

Jan 18, 2012
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gford217 from Georgia

3.3/5  rDev -13.8%
look: 3.5 | smell: 3.5 | taste: 3 | feel: 3.5 | overall: 3.5

On tap at the Brick Store poured into a snifter.

Pours a dark, dark brown that settles in almost completely opaque in the glass with a rocky tan head that shows good retention and lacing. The aroma had some chocolate and roasted malts but with a sizable spiciness and a hint of sour in the nose. The taste is supported by toasted malts and has a hint of chocolate. Spices are even more prevalent in the taste as well as a definite sour kick in the finish. The mouthfeel is medium bodied with good carbonation and a bit of sour zing in the finish. This is an interesting brew but not too memorable for me.

Oct 11, 2008
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Griffith from Connecticut

4/5  rDev +4.4%

Mar 25, 2014
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ynnpar from England

4/5  rDev +4.4%
look: 4 | smell: 4 | taste: 4 | feel: 4 | overall: 4

On tap at Beer Table in Park Slope, Brooklyn. I liked this one much better than the Bon Chien but think that it has some similar problems. Very dark in color with little to no carbonation, no head, no lacing. There's a sour smell that isn't promising, but unlike the Bon Chien, the sourness in this one is cut by the deeper richer flavors. As another reviewer put it, half stout, half sour. I'm happy to have tried it, but I wouldn't go out of my way to have it again.

Nov 19, 2008
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SABERG from Massachusetts

4.04/5  rDev +5.5%
look: 4 | smell: 3.75 | taste: 4.25 | feel: 4 | overall: 4

Poured from draft at Armsby Abbey into a modified tulip.

A - Dark color, creamy white head, delicate carbonation. Lacing lasts forever.
S - Dried fruit, fresh broadleaf tobacco, chocolate and plum. A hint of citrus and toffee.
T - Delicate, fruit not to sweet. A slight bite, and cocoa combine.
M- Medium bodied, carbonation leaves a clean palate, rounded out with a pleasant linger of sweetness, finishes with a slight floral snap.
O - The first time I have had this, the serving was perfect, the quality is impeccable. I see this is listed as a Belgian Strong. I could support that, this is a creamy delight to be sought out.

Jun 16, 2014
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DrinkSlurm from New York

3.99/5  rDev +4.2%
look: 4.25 | smell: 4 | taste: 4 | feel: 3.75 | overall: 4

May 09, 2015
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JAHMUR from Connecticut

3.75/5  rDev -2.1%

Apr 29, 2014
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atis from Finland

3.77/5  rDev -1.6%
look: 4 | smell: 4.5 | taste: 3.5 | feel: 3.5 | overall: 3.5

Pours black with foamy brown head that fades to dense layer, patchy lacing. Aroma is funky sour malt, dried cherries and dried fruit in general, one of the best smelling beers I have ever had.

Taste is fruity, kind of ripe fruit type, slightly sour and alcoholic bitterness, becoming astringent towards the rather dry finish. Mouthfeel is very light with prickly and slightly above moderate carbonation and noticeable alcohol warming.

Overall, the aroma was fantastic, the taste not so, it also felt too light.

Oct 06, 2009
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HeyItsChili from South Carolina

3.5/5  rDev -8.6%
look: 3.5 | smell: 3.5 | taste: 3.5 | feel: 3.5 | overall: 3.5

Had a bottle of this from Tom's Beer Box in Chur, Switzerland.

A - Pours pitch black with a nice khaki head. Little bit o lacing.

S - Roast malts, spices, dark fruit, chocolate, little bit of sour tinge.

T - Dark fruit, hint of chocolate, with a sourness that plays off the bitter dark chocolate. Spices.

M - Slightly thinner than medium bodied, nice carbonation.

Feb 17, 2010
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eduardolinhalis from Switzerland

4.2/5  rDev +9.7%
look: 4 | smell: 4 | taste: 4.5 | feel: 4 | overall: 4

330ml bottle served in a snifter glass.

A: Pours a dark brown almost black color. Cloudy. Forms a small beige head. Good retention and a small layer lasts forever. Only few lacings left

S: Sweet smell of roasted malts and dark chocolate. Brown bread. Notes of alcohol in the very end

T: Follows the nose. Roasted malts, dark chocolate and yeasts

M: Medium body and low carbonation. Roasted malts aftertaste

O: Good drinkability. Excellent BFM specimens. Strongly recommended

Sep 22, 2012
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Sparky44 from Illinois

4/5  rDev +4.4%
look: 4 | smell: 4 | taste: 4 | feel: 4 | overall: 4

Jan 31, 2016
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bpfrush from Wisconsin

3.75/5  rDev -2.1%

Nov 16, 2011
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MidwestBA from Illinois

4/5  rDev +4.4%
look: 4 | smell: 4 | taste: 4 | feel: 4 | overall: 4

Jan 11, 2015
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sbauer from Massachusetts

3.73/5  rDev -2.6%
look: 4 | smell: 3.5 | taste: 4 | feel: 3.5 | overall: 3.5

Served from a 33cl swing-top bottle.

A: pitch black, a bit cloudy. no lacing or head.

S: black licorice, dark cherry, gasoline, plus hints of tropical fruit.

T: tart fruits balanced with dark licorice or or coffee flavors. not a lot of hops coming through. lot black malt aftertaste.

M: medium-heavy bodied. medium carbonation. a bit sticky on the palate.

O: an interesting nighttime beer. tart mixed with dark, intense flavors.

Dec 25, 2012
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thinwhiteduke from Illinois

4.25/5  rDev +11%
look: 4.25 | smell: 4.25 | taste: 4.25 | feel: 4.25 | overall: 4.25

Jan 29, 2015
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brandonld23 from Massachusetts

4.12/5  rDev +7.6%
look: 4 | smell: 4.5 | taste: 4 | feel: 4 | overall: 4

Jul 12, 2015
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sogrady from Maine

3.28/5  rDev -14.4%
look: 3.5 | smell: 3 | taste: 3.5 | feel: 3.5 | overall: 3

A slightly sour ale, dark brown in color, the Madragore will play to certain tastes but didn't do much for mine. The fruit notes, maltiness and sour finish left it busy for me rather than balanced, while the alcohol was at times more up front than was appreciated.

The body is medium, which is to say it's thicker than a golden but thinner than a stout. Perhaps it's better off cask as one of the other reviewer's stated, but off draft at least, it's not something I would seek out.

Sep 15, 2010
La Mandragore from BFM (Brasserie des Franches-Montagnes)
Beer rating: 86 out of 100 with 46 ratings