McChouffe | Brasserie d'Achouffe

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BA SCORE
89
very good
528 Reviews
McChouffeMcChouffe
BEER INFO

Brewed by:
Brasserie d'Achouffe
Belgium
achouffe.be

Style: Belgian Strong Dark Ale

Alcohol by volume (ABV): 8.00%

Availability: Year-round

Notes / Commercial Description:
ABV varies from time to time.

Added by Mitchster on 09-22-2001

BEER STATS
Reviews:
528
Ratings:
1,075
Avg:
3.97
pDev:
14.61%
 
 
Wants:
55
Gots:
160
For Trade:
0
User Reviews
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Reviews: 528 | Ratings: 1,075
Photo of BradtheGreat7
4.18/5  rDev +5.3%
look: 4 | smell: 4 | taste: 4.25 | feel: 4.25 | overall: 4.25

330ml brown Belgian style curved bottle with fantastic Gnome artwork this one being the Scottish chouffe looking to blend his style with a Belgian classic. Poured into a d'achouffe stemmed tulip.

A - murky brown with hints of ruby mahogany in the light. Some nice sized funk and yeast particles floating around let's me know I'm in for a treat. Soft white head poured lovely, quickly settling into a thin pillow of lacing leaving small splotches of stick.

S - dark fruits with fig and raisin. Belgian spices, sweet scottish style malt and a fantastic Belgian yeast note.

T - more going on than the nose would suggest with fig, raisin, grape, and flashes of candied dark fruit. The malt backbone really gives a Scottish ale character and sweetness paired nicely with Belgian spices and a wonderful yeast strain. Hints of soft vanilla, sweet caramel, and sugar only add to the Scottish - Belgian display.

M - medium bodied and smooth. Perfectly balanced with malt and Belgian spices. There is a Scottish style here not only with color but with flavor. It's not your traditional belgian strong dark ale but really the best of both worlds. Absolutely fantastic flavors pop as this warms.

O - this is truly one of a kind. Sure, it's a Belgian ale, but it's a Belgian ale brewed in tribute to the Scottish ale that's sometimes over looked yet still remains a very nice Belgian dark ale that's big enough to pack some great flavor. This has since found its way into my glass on a regular basis and I'd recommend this to anyone.

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Photo of delta490
4/5  rDev +0.8%
look: 4 | smell: 4 | taste: 4 | feel: 4 | overall: 4

Depending on how cold you keep your fridge, this needs a few to warm up a little to let all the goodness open up. Pours a dark, murky brown with a fizzy tan head that burns off quickly. There is no lacing. The aroma starts out a little tight, with some pleasant dark fruit notes but really comes out a little warmer with some nice caramel notes and more robust fruits. The body has a nice weight, not heavy or thin and a smooth finish.

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Photo of babaracas
3.98/5  rDev +0.3%
look: 4 | smell: 4 | taste: 4 | feel: 3.75 | overall: 4

Pours a slightly hazy dark brown with orange tint, big but fizzy light brown colored head, spray of lace trailed down the glass. Smell: pear, red grape, brown sugar and bread notes, slightly peppery. Taste: brown sugar, peach and orange notes, brown bread, spicy, into a peach skin finish. Light upfront for the style into fluffy feel, quick on the tongue but easy drinking. Tasty.

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Photo of seedyone
4.07/5  rDev +2.5%
look: 3.25 | smell: 3.75 | taste: 4.25 | feel: 4.25 | overall: 4.25

From bottle at Rattle n Hum, NYC. This large bottle (25+ floz) deserve a series of appraisles. Quite cold, so I expect it to open up, it has a goodly amount of headwith a deep brown opaque look. The aroma is negligable due to the chill. The flavor is deep & rich. Raisiny.

AS time goes by the back half o f the bottle yields a much richer flavor & texture. This is a fine beer. Not the usual Belgian nor the usual spiced winter warme, just a good solid cold weather brew that needs to be barely chilled.

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Photo of MrDell
4.28/5  rDev +7.8%
look: 4.25 | smell: 4.25 | taste: 4.25 | feel: 4 | overall: 4.5

02.10.15

Brasserie D’Achouffe - Mc Chouffe – bottling date unknown - Best Before 11.2016

Aroma: Classic belgian yeast, Warm haribo sweets, strawberry jam. very slight smell (that I mentioned in my last review of the Rochefort 8 and couldn’t place) which i now think is could be from the yeast.

Appearance: V. dark brown, one finger tightly packed off white head. Some lacing left on the sides of the Brasserie D’Achouffe tulip glass. Good head retention.

Taste: That sweet liquorice taste that i love goes on for a very long time before giving way to a slight hop finish and warming alcohol.

Mouth Feel: Dry

Overall: Another Belgian classic - wish this was more widely available as I only seem to find it in the Autumn or Winter, here in Switzerland. 8.5/10.

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Photo of PorterLambic
4.13/5  rDev +4%
look: 4.25 | smell: 4.25 | taste: 4.25 | feel: 3.5 | overall: 4

Pours a turbid, chestnut, almost mahogany, color with a tan head that drops to a chunky raft and leaves some good lacing behind.
Smell is sweet, malt, faint dark fruit, white grapes, light yeast. Great balance.
Taste is exactly what you'd expect from the nose, grape juice, malt, sweetness, a faint yeastiness, some wood. Again, very well balanced.
A lot lighter bodied than anticipated, light effervescence, slightly warming and a faint dryness.

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Photo of breakingbland
3.55/5  rDev -10.6%
look: 3.25 | smell: 3.25 | taste: 3.75 | feel: 3.75 | overall: 3.5

Poured into a goblet.

The 1-1/2 finger off-white head was composed of rather coarse bubbles. The beer itself was an opaque brown.

The aroma was not strong -- mostly malt with slight hops and tobacco.

The taste follows the aroma. It was sweet up-front. Slight hops and funk. Not an overly complex flavor profile.

The beer had a nice level of carbonation with a firm body.

Overall, this beer didn't quite live up to expectations, although I'd get it again. It offers a different take on a brown ale.

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Photo of e_dawg
4.25/5  rDev +7.1%

Pours a dark brown copper color. Held up to the light a fiery red with some pink and boarders of yellow and gold is revealed. Small head which dissipates within a few minutes. Some light lacing.

Smells of freshly cut fruit: pears and apples along with some light pepper notes. Also some champagne.

Taste is more pears and apples with light carbonation and some prickliness. Medium bodied.

Finishes smooth without lingering too long. Easy to drink for an 8% avb.

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Photo of constantine_272
3.94/5  rDev -0.8%
look: 3.5 | smell: 3.75 | taste: 4.25 | feel: 3.75 | overall: 3.75

L: Looks good. Dark brown, somewhat muddy. Low head. Okay.

S: Chocolate and malt. Sweet and syrupy.

T: Surprisingly very mellow up front. Really weird. Then the chocolate cocoa rushes forward with some sweet vanilla underneath it. A yeastiness lingers with the chocolate. The bit of the cocoa then melts away to a longer sweetness with a mild bread yeastiness.

F: Mouthfeel is good but the sweetness runs a little long.

O: This is a really nice brew. It's rich and chocolatey yet relaxing and mellow. The Belgian yeast adds a lovely tanginess to the chocolate flavors. Feels like I'm back in Belgium. Just a tiny bit on the sweet side.

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Photo of chogm54
3.65/5  rDev -8.1%
look: 4 | smell: 2 | taste: 4.25 | feel: 4.25 | overall: 4

330ml bottle poured into sniffler glass. BB date April 2016.

L - Hazy, dark brown/ruby. Pours a patchy offwhite head.

S - some bready malts and white wine, but there is a huge whiff of cooking yeasts, pepper and eggs. Repugnant.

T - Luckily the taste is better than the smell - brown sugars, earthy yeast, dried fruit (figs), caramel with a sweet malt base that rises up towards the finish. Very well balanced.

F - lively carbonation for style, alcohol is muted, medium bodied, slick texture.

O - tidy beer, well balanced taste, and im impressed with both the mouthfeel and muted alcohol. The only let down is the smell - the fresh yeast smell isn't pleasant, so block your nose when you drink!

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Photo of Beer-A-Lot
4.28/5  rDev +7.8%

I could drink this stuff by the bucketful. Smooth, packed with flavors of figs, grape, pepper. So easy to drink. Medium body. Some spiciness and bitterness. Dangerously delicious.

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Photo of chinchill
3.98/5  rDev +0.3%
look: 4 | smell: 4 | taste: 4 | feel: 3.75 | overall: 4

330 ml squat bottle with a BB date of 4/2016 ... plenty of time remaining but the little gnome on the label called out to me from the refrigerator and I couldn't resist.

Pours hazy dark brown with a durable tan head. Excellent lacing left on the sides of my St. Bernardus snifter.

Aroma: complex and variable, or so it seems. Spicy and yeasty with some alcohol esters an a hint of vanilla.

Flavor: better and more stable if less complex than the aroma. Typical bitter-sweet balance for style (lightly sweet) but perhaps a bit more bitter and sweet than average. Plenty of dark ripe and dried fruit notes, including raisins, dates and dried plums. Faintly yeasty, bready and spicy with a touch of vanilla.

Feel: medium+ carbonation is soft but seems a little bit too high; medium body.

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Photo of Samp01
3.81/5  rDev -4%
look: 3.75 | smell: 4 | taste: 3.75 | feel: 3.75 | overall: 3.75

11.2oz bottle. Pours a dark cloudy brown with a medium lasting beige head. Aroma is sweet dark fruit, plums, Belgian yeast and bread notes. Taste same as aroma with mild bitterness and tart notes. Palate is a medium body with good carbonation. Finishes with dark fruit, plums some raisins, Belgian yeast, bread and tart notes followed by mild bitterness on the end. Aroma and taste get stronger as it warms up. Overall a very good, full flavored brew.

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Photo of Ozzylizard
4.13/5  rDev +4%
look: 4 | smell: 4 | taste: 4.25 | feel: 4.25 | overall: 4

Bottle dated 01 2016 at 50 degrees into snifter
Aroma of dark malt and yeasty phenolics
Head average (4 cm), light brown, frothy, diminishing to frothy layer 8 mm thick
Lacing spotty; few small islands
Body dark brown, opaque
Flavor of yeast phenolics and dates (figs?), slightly sweet; no alcohol, no diacetyl, no hops
Palate medium to full, creamy, lively carbonation

A decent strong dark ale. Good appearance, aroma, and palate. The flavor is fruity and slightly strong for my taste. Overall, pretty good.

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Photo of doktorhops
4.4/5  rDev +10.8%
look: 4.5 | smell: 4.5 | taste: 4.5 | feel: 4.5 | overall: 4

I have a lot of respect for Brasserie d'Achouffe's La Chouffe, which I gave a glowing review on a while back. What is it about the Belgians that get it so right when it comes to beer? They almost always seem to capture the perfection of flavour, body, aroma and alcohol content. And I'm hoping that McChouffe, the apparently Scottish cousin of La Chouffe's gnome, hits upon that magic formula.

Poured from a 750ml bottle into a Chimay chalice.

A: A deep Mahogany cloudy body presents along with a minimal tan lacing. Looks a treat.

S: Dark fruits, candi sugar and sourdough yeast intermingles along with some pear/apple esters to produce a fine perfume. Expecting some dark fruit and sugar driven flavours.

T: Yep, dark fruits, candi sugar and a light malt base come together. Pear/apple esters, Phenols and sourdough also make themselves present. It's very much a "La Chouffe Dark" then, with the flavour base so similar you might think they were separated at wort (aka the early foetal stage of the brew). The finish is a mid-range medicinal herb bitterness.

M: Medium bodied with a medium (and a tad sharp) carbonation.

D: Really there's not much between La Chouffe and McChouffe, marketing-wise I would have liked if they had been named "La Chouffe Good" and "La Chouffe Evil" with a good Gnome and an evil Gnome on the respective labels for a bit of fun. It really comes down to preference when choosing between the two. I prefer La Chouffe vanilla, however if you like your Belgians with a dark fruit slant (raisin, fig, plum, prune or date) then go the McChouffe, you'll have more fun with the Scottish twin.

Food match: Hard cheese platter, roasted dark meats - beef, venison, lamb, and grilled vegetables are all winners here.

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Photo of dacrza1
4.14/5  rDev +4.3%
look: 4.5 | smell: 4.25 | taste: 4 | feel: 4 | overall: 4.25

DATE REVIEWED: June 6, 2014... GLASSWARE: Chimay chalice... OCCASION: a week of returning to workouts--protein is welcome!... APPEARANCE: dark purple body; soft, wispy off-white head that thins out to an uneven, varied density; nice, intricate lacing... AROMA: immediate prune and apple; hops are aromatic and yeast adds some funk to an otherwise sweet malt... PALATE: thick, creamy, a bit chewy, and warming; easy-drinking and dry at the finish; a fleet, discrete presence--good, solid brown ale base... TASTE: grape and prune are the dominant flavors; smoky malt surprises, as does the lack of alcohol; rather flat at the finish... OVERALLL: a classy, slightly subdued version of tits usual and Christmas varieties; situation is key--introduced this at Thanksgiving a decade ago, but it didn't pair with the main courses well; as a nightcap, it can open with its complexity or close with its strength....

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Photo of scottbham
4.52/5  rDev +13.9%
look: 4 | smell: 4.5 | taste: 4.75 | feel: 4 | overall: 4.5

Don't have time for tasting notes on this one. Just want to update: Opened a bottle from April '12 and it's still excellent. Not preferred cellar temp (~60F). Very enjoyable right now, sweetness has subsided into a very relaxed melange of brown Belgian goodness. Nary a breath of alcohol and pure delicate quench on the back of the tongue. Hope my ambiguity inspires you to try and/or pop it now.

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Photo of ThaneMcC
3.85/5  rDev -3%
look: 3.75 | smell: 3.75 | taste: 4 | feel: 3.75 | overall: 3.75

A: pours a dark reddish, brown with soapy off white head that rapidly dissipates

S: malty aromas, burnt caramel, hint of banana and other fruity esters

T: malty sweet up front, with finish of more significant hops and a slight metallic twang - clean finish

M: a surprisingly thin mouth feel, doesn't have the fullness of other beers in this genre

O: not a bad brown ale, but I wouldn't go out of my way to find a store that sell it

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Photo of FLima
4.09/5  rDev +3%
look: 3.75 | smell: 4 | taste: 4.25 | feel: 4 | overall: 4

Dark brown reddish color with a thick two finger beige head with medium retention and leaving some good laces.
Good aroma of prunes, caramels and crystalized and dark fruits.
Nice flavor with notes of roasted and caramel malts, raisins, prunes, figs, spices (cloves, white pepper), cocoa powder , mild licorice, tangerine citrusy, Belgian yeast, muscatel grapes and herbal and earthy hops. A bit of smokiness and candied sugar as well. Quite dry aftertaste with a mild bitterness and a residual elegant spiciness.
Medium body with slightly effervescent carbonation. Alcohol of 8% abv is very well hidden.
This is a great Belgian Strong Dark Ale, well balanced, tasty and pleasant to drink. Not overly complex at first, but reveals its notes throughout the degustation. Not really a sipper once it can be very drinkable, but you still want to take it slowly to harvest all it has to offer.

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Photo of JTuomi
4.03/5  rDev +1.5%
look: 4.25 | smell: 3.75 | taste: 4.25 | feel: 3.75 | overall: 4

33cl bottle (08 2016) into a tulip. Brown color, two finger tan head that settles down pretty quickly, some lacing. Sweet malty aroma. The taste starts spicy, followed by a sweet but not sugary taste of roasted malts that grows in the mouth, finishing with a dry malty aftertaste. Slight alcohol in the taste. Medium-light body with a medium carbonation, smooth mouthfeel. Overall an enjoyable beer but not that special.

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Photo of Bouleboubier
3.6/5  rDev -9.3%
look: 3.5 | smell: 3.5 | taste: 3.75 | feel: 3.5 | overall: 3.5

("Scotch of the Ardennes"... poured into a balloon glass)

A: medium-dark reddish brown, fair clarity... initially large, but fizzy head - keeps a swirl of a thin cover... minimal lace

S: brown sugar, medium-intensity of burnt caramel, light prune or other dried dark fruit... if you think "Scotch Ale", knowing it's of Belgian origin, you can somewhat sense the endemic characteristics of each (for lack of a better word) "style"

T: clove-like spice with a semi-sweet, cherry-like finish... rich in ripe-red berry/stone-fruit in the middle.... aftertaste moderately bitter with a mild, ghostly, spicy alcohol warmth - bitterness almost citrus-pithy... malty, but predominantly in the mid-dark spectrum and dry... brown sugar and burnt flavors fairly prominent, but outmatched by the assertive, softly-phenolic spice

M: perhaps a bit too thinned-out by the prickly carbonation and spicy alcohol.... does a have a hint of viscosity that is unfortunately attenuated by the recipe and yeast dynamics

O: having had this a few times, really enjoying it some of those times, it's frustrating when it seems not quite on... I would venture a loose comparison to a Belgian homage to Traquair House Ale, mostly in its expression of dark-sugar flavors - not nearly a parallel in overall composition... the proprietary Achouffe yeast factors relatively moderately into its taste, for better or worse

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Photo of CalgaryFMC
3.64/5  rDev -8.3%
look: 3.75 | smell: 3.5 | taste: 3.75 | feel: 3.25 | overall: 3.75

The dark offering from this fairly well-known brewery in the Ardennes. I have read that these guys only use malt syrups rather than whole grains ... True? In any event, this is certainly a well-attenuated and thin-bodied dark ale that does indeed capture some Scottish flavor elements, albeit with a decidedly Belgian profile nonetheless. A dark reddish brown brew, maybe leaning towards the red, with a moderate amount of light tan head and an aroma that is equal parts fruity esters, spicy medicinal phenols, and sweet caramel or toffee along with a vinous wine or cider-like note. Nice balance between the caramel elements and Belgian spice although I am less wild about the cidery component. Palate largely reflects this, such that I initially get some apple and pear fruit followed by clove spice, golden raisin, musty white peppercorns, faint molasses and bandage-like phenols, and perhaps a whiff of citrus rind. Rather dry, powdery mouthfeel and this brew just screams thinned down with a healthy sugar addition to the kettle. Some alcohol is apparent but not over the top in this regard. Really my main issue is the ultra-thin body and correspondingly airy mouthfeel but the flavor is solid.

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Photo of thecheapies
3.98/5  rDev +0.3%
look: 4.5 | smell: 4 | taste: 4 | feel: 3.5 | overall: 4

Apple brown with a husky coat of sepia foam. Laces thickly. Awesome.

Apple-like aromas, nuttiness, pear, golden raisin, light candi sugar, and steeped grain. A very lovely, delicate nose with great fruity esters and yeast prominence.

Rich dried fruit flavors with notes of apple, date, raisin, and quince. Toffee malts with medicinal phenols. Estery fruit, nutty yeast, light roastiness, and a sweet alcohol; all in good context. Finishes rather dry, and slightly soapy, like a floral finish.

Could use some more body. Drinks great, however. A little powdery dry; the carbonation puckers a bit.

A solid BSDA. Perhaps, a sweeter example.

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Photo of cjgiant
3.87/5  rDev -2.5%
look: 4 | smell: 3.75 | taste: 4 | feel: 3.75 | overall: 3.75

A: ruby-ish brown with a minor amount if head, not unexpected
S: smacks of dark fruit with a bit of tartness, fig and sour apple, perhaps
T: similar to the nose, but heavier on the dark fruit. Also a bit if woodiness. I think the yeast used adds a very mild funkiness, as well.
M: a surprising amount of carbonation tingle despite the lack of impressive head; otherwise standard for the style I believe
O: I didn't feel there was anything special here, just a solid offering. I can't tell if part of the profile is similar to the Houblon Chouffe, which I thoroughly enjoyed, but it was mildly familiar.

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Photo of jonb5
4.02/5  rDev +1.3%
look: 4.25 | smell: 4 | taste: 4 | feel: 4 | overall: 4

330ml bottle, poured into La Chouffe chalice.

A: Very dark mahogany, 90% opaque,
two finger tanned head which faded quickly leaving a bit of lacing.

S: Brown sugar and mollases, some yeast.

T: Fudge, prune, fig quite sweet but not boozy.

M: Smooth, decent carbonation, thick but not cloying.

O: Good, a beer without obvious faults, only minus point was the fact it can be interchanged with quite a few other BSDAs.

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McChouffe from Brasserie d'Achouffe
3.97 out of 5 based on 1,075 ratings.
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