McChouffe | Brasserie d'Achouffe

BA SCORE
89
very good
533 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:
533
Ratings:
1,101
Avg:
3.97
pDev:
10.08%
 
 
Wants:
55
Gots:
175
For Trade:
0
User Reviews
Sort by:  Recent | High | Low | Top Raters | Alström Bros
Reviews: 533 | Ratings: 1,101
Photo of aristeros
3.93/5  rDev -1%
look: 4.5 | smell: 4 | taste: 4 | feel: 4 | overall: 3.5

Picked this one up at Total Wine in Tucson, AZ. Poured into a tulip once the bottle warmed from fridge temperature. Pours a deep red-brown, garnet in the light. Big head, good retention and lacing. Smells of red and dark fruit, spices. Pretty yeasty.

Starts sharp, with black cherries and some spices, but mellows out to sweet malts, darker fruit, and warming alcohol. Maybe a little chocolate? Finishes warm, definitely a sipper. 'Feels' like a 10% ABV. Certainly could mask it better.

Good mouthfeel, but you'd want to finish the session with this because of the alcohol presence.

As advertised, an attempt to marry a Belgian to a Scotch Ale. Solid contender. Makes me want to see what else these gnomes can cook up.

 721 characters

Photo of TheycallmeTim
3.97/5  rDev 0%
look: 3.5 | smell: 4 | taste: 4 | feel: 4 | overall: 4

750 ml. bottle poured into an Ommegang chalice.

A--Pours up a pretty ruby chestnut reddish-brown. Head is minimal, maybe a finger, and fizzy cola. Dies quickly and doesn't lace.

S--Raisins, some roasted nuttiness way back there, and a sweet liquer-like back end that's hot in the nostrils. Hot in the nostrils--sounds like a rock band.

T--Bright and earthy at the same time. At first I thought this was just a dubbel lookalike. Now I'm not so sure. The center of it certainly has abbey ale written all over it--has those plummy, raisiny, jammy notes. Yeast is prevalent, too, in a spiciness. But the hops really lend something here: both an herbal quality and an earthy quality. You also get some pepper from either hops or yeast. The saaz and golding are definitely happening, and alongside the lively carbonation cut through the sweetness of the nearly scottish ale malt flavors, which on the finish somehow transmogrify into a chocolate malt nuttiness. Very juicy, but at the same time very lively and spicy/earthy. Hard to describe but lots of fun.

M&D--Again, bright--champagne-like bubbles which normally annoy me but work well alongside the more syrupy dark flavor profile. Drinkability? Yeah, sure. It's worth trying. Watch the ABV on this, though, as the alcohol is well-hidden.

Claims it's a "new style" abbey/scottish ale. All the way. Crafty brewing by the little gnome who, as the story goes, met himself another gnome who wore tartan. This would all be much less charming if the beer wasn't so dang tasty.

 1,525 characters

Photo of garbercury
3.95/5  rDev -0.5%
look: 4 | smell: 4 | taste: 4 | feel: 3.5 | overall: 4

served in a Chimay chalice from a 750 ml bottle. Thanks Vintage Beer and Wine for the opportunity to try this one..

A--Deep reddish-brown, two finger head that disappated very quickly, not really any lacing.

S--Nice aroma, fruity almost a bit of cherry in the aroma

T--Still taste that cherry flavor in the beer, good taste

M--Thin and lots of carbonation

D--This is pretty good beer, if you enjoy belgians like me, this is definitely worth a try

 451 characters

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

Tasted on 8/14/04 from 750ml bottle.

Appearance: Slightly hazy copper/brown with an off white head that gradually fades to quite a bit of sticky lacing.

Smell: Restrained aromas of toffeish malt, plum, spice and yeast.

Taste: Big malt up front, with flavors of orange peel, plum, and caramel. The finish is dry and slightly peppery.

Mouthfeel: Big full body, with creamy carbonation.

Drinkability: Great dinnertime beer, very much a damn solid brew.

 464 characters

Photo of Pepeton
4.2/5  rDev +5.8%
look: 4 | smell: 4 | taste: 4.5 | feel: 4 | overall: 4

One of my favorite styles.

Beautiful mahogany dark, thick tan head. Some lacing, not much actually.

Smell is typical Belgian: Sweet roasted malts, hops in the background. No alcohol noticed.

Thick taste of ripe dark berries, some coriander, spiciness all over the sweet malts. Some bitterness right at the end.

Mouthfeel is creamy, silky.

Drinkability? Well I'll buy some more of these, but it certainly is not a session beer.

¡Salud!

 441 characters

Photo of expatsteve
3.8/5  rDev -4.3%
look: 4 | smell: 4 | taste: 3.5 | feel: 4 | overall: 4

Appearance: Dark brown, which turns blood plum under light. 1 inch head - thick bubble bath suds. No real visibility and low/medium viscosity.

Aroma: Lemongrass, biscuity caramel and chocolate malts. Orange rind, coriander and plums - unique and interesting.

Taste: Pine with a little initial graininess. Caramel back palate. Nuttiness on the front palate, with a few hints of grass. Good hops presence, and some nice spices present. Port notes as it warms. There does seem to be a slightly distracting vegetal quality.

Mouthfeel: Light, nice - bitterness up front gives way to a nice clean malt finish.

Drinkability: A nice dark ale with some signature d'Achouffe notes and spices. From the bottle, the malts were a little subdued giving this some "flat" moments. But certainly worth checking out.

 810 characters

Photo of mattmaples
4.7/5  rDev +18.4%
look: 4 | smell: 4 | taste: 5 | feel: 5 | overall: 5

This is a great Belgian interpetation of the style. Beautiful reddish brown. Woody hop charater with rasinious/dried fruit flavor. Malty sweet having a great character that will improve with age.

 195 characters

Photo of PopeJonPaul
4.3/5  rDev +8.3%
look: 4 | smell: 4 | taste: 4.5 | feel: 4 | overall: 4.5

Poured a dark amber brown with a light thin head, sweet fruity and yeasty smell. Back when he used to make wine, my dad once threw a bunch of stuff at random into the bin just for the hell of it - grapes, plums, pears, etc. It ended up being a fantastic dessert wine, but of course he could never duplicate the recipe. Mix some of that with caramel malt and caky yeast, mellow it down a few notches and you have the McChouffe. Well-balanced hoppiness makes for a nice finish, a bit of a sugary\alcohol mouthfeel but still very drinkable beer.

 542 characters

Photo of ggourde
4.43/5  rDev +11.6%
look: 4.5 | smell: 4 | taste: 4.5 | feel: 5 | overall: 4.5

Appearance: A beautiful deep brown with a big brown head.

Aroma: First smell out of the bottle was sweet caramel. A second whiff after the pour slight hops.

Mouthfeel: Happy bubbles to greet you followed by rich medium/full body.

Taste: sweet malt coming in, followed by very slight bitterness that lingers for short while.

Overall: Very happy with this 8%- went down real easy (actually a bit too easy I finished it before I was ready).

I bought this at a Belgian beer festival, and the promoters labeled this in their Specialty beer unfiltered brown ale category. I think that this is a better classification than BA's 'Belgian Strong Dark Ale'

 654 characters

Photo of jim102864
4.47/5  rDev +12.6%
look: 4 | smell: 4.5 | taste: 4.5 | feel: 4.5 | overall: 4.5

This is a special Belgian. 1pt, 9.4oz bottle at 8.5% and well worth the purchase. Using a deep tulip glass, it pours a lovely dark chestnut brown with an ample tan head. Moderate carbonation. Hints of sugary sweet chocolate in the aroma. Malty, chocolatey taste with a smooth yet hearty mouthfeel which carries through to finish. Lace hugs the glass throughout the experience. Highly drinkable. A wonderful Belgian brown.

 421 characters

Photo of Hhawk06
4.27/5  rDev +7.6%
look: 3.5 | smell: 4 | taste: 4.5 | feel: 4 | overall: 4.5

This offering poured with a frizzy, tan, and quickly dissipating head but that doesn't rob from the fact that it was mountainous to start. A true deep brown color preserves. The nose is inviting, as its fresh, bready, with a spicy pepperness. The body is medium with a spicy and tad prickly mouthfeel. There is a very fresh feel to the beer. Among the mingling flavors are cloves, nuttiness, and saaz(?) hops. Overall, a very earthen and handcrafted feel, which is always appreciated. I'm floored at how the complexity keeps the mouth refreshed. The finish is very peppery, with sweet clove, and is not entirely bitter. Very drinkable overall and is a good experience.

 668 characters

Photo of ColForbin
3.82/5  rDev -3.8%
look: 3.5 | smell: 4 | taste: 4 | feel: 3.5 | overall: 3.5

Appearance: 750ml bottle with a painted label featuring an elf wearing a kilt. The beer pours with vigorous carbonation which gives a large head that quickly fades to a thin lacing.

Smell: Slightly sour, malty, bready, even some hops. Very intriguing.

Taste/Mouthfeel: Just like what the bottle says - a Belgian Scottish Ale. Malty, even some smoky flavors with a slightly sour undertone. Mouthfeel is a bit thin for a big beer - I want something I can chew on and mull over in a Belgian.

Drinkability: A little too thin to keep me interested, but it definitely goes down easy with a little warming feel from the alcohol.

Overall, a very tasty beer that I will be having again. Not quite world-class, though.

 721 characters

Photo of jcbogantes
3.89/5  rDev -2%
look: 4 | smell: 3.75 | taste: 4 | feel: 3.5 | overall: 4

A: Pours dark, with a thick creamy head in to the glass, the 2 finger head stays for a while

S: Fruty, yeasty

T: sweet malts, dark fruits, that end with some alcohol warmth but with a good balance, earthy hops

M: medium bodied

O: excellent beer, very artisanal

 264 characters

Photo of meatmallet
3.63/5  rDev -8.6%
look: 4 | smell: 3.5 | taste: 4 | feel: 3.5 | overall: 3

Appearance: Brown with a head that quickly fades.

Smell: Yeast, dark fruits, some caramelized malt and a little hops. Not overly powerful.

Taste: A little sour at first with the dark fruit flavor. A little sweet.

Mouthfeel: There is light carbonation present with each sip. Very smooth in the mouth.

Drinkability: Not bad but not my favorite of the style.

 360 characters

Photo of Chadbrew
2.96/5  rDev -25.4%
look: 4 | smell: 3 | taste: 3 | feel: 3 | overall: 2.5

Picked up at Spirits Unlimited in Red Bank NJ.
Appearance - Dark brown, murky beer with a very large head that sticks around for a while. Speaking of sticking, there's some pretty good lacing.
Unfortunately this beer kinda goes down hill from hear.
Aroma - Sweet and plum-like full of candi sugars and malts.
Taste - Bitter-sweet with lots of residual sweetness, almost cloying in the finish. Some fruit tastes like raisins and bananas and too much clove.
Mouthfeel - Not a bad mouthfeel, I mean there is plenty of body.
Drinkability - Too much sweetness for my liking. I would have liked to have had this in a 12 oz instead of a big 1 pint 9.4 oz bottle. Didn't even finish it, and needless to say I probably won't pick another one of these up again.

 758 characters

Photo of dbmernin83
3.82/5  rDev -3.8%
look: 3.5 | smell: 4 | taste: 4 | feel: 3.5 | overall: 3.5

Dark amber brown, bordering black, nice frothy head.
Dark fruits, sweet candy nose, a touch of booze.
Sweet, slighty medicinal, light alcohol. Silky smooth.
Very light on the mouth, making it that much more drinkable and dangerous.
A great Belgium strong dark. The light body makes it easier to drink and a little more approachable for beginners than some. All in all, a solid offering.

 386 characters

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

poured into a pilsner glass ( it was all i had) beautiful head, great rention.
smelled malty, like figs covered in bread, with and eathiness in the background
tasted like a belgian dark ale, mixed with a little bit of scotish ale( which is pretty much what it is) the esters of the belgian yeast dominate, but you still get the malty goodness of the scotch ale. Great beer, loved it.

 383 characters

Photo of dblinkhorn
3.73/5  rDev -6%
look: 4 | smell: 3.5 | taste: 3.5 | feel: 4.5 | overall: 4

Poured from a 750ml into my McChouffe glass.

Appearance - Pours a muddy brown color with a touch of amber in it. The head is massive (due partly to the very tall and thin glass) at about four fingers. It slowly evaporates and leaves excellent lacing behind. The head itself is extremely silky and is an off-white/eggshell color. There is an average amout of carbonation activity within the beer. And the color of the beer is a dark, very clear, brownish amber.

Smell - Lots of sourness and a decent amount of alcohol on the nose. What little hop aroma there is seems to be somewhat floral. The malt smell is alos very elusive, but has a slightly toasted smell to it.

Taste - Again sourness up front. This slowly gives way to a powerful nutty flavor (mostly peanut and almond). The hops have a mostly bitter character, with only slight floral notes. They are fairly subdued, however. The malt is again and as well fairly subdued. Toasted and slightly rich in flavor, and definitely a back burner attribute of this beer. The most impressive taste about this ale is the strong nutty flavors. The finish and aftertaste are dominated by sourness and earthiness from the yeast. Moderate alcohol burn accompanies the entire taste.

Mouthfeel - The carbonation is very well done with this particular ale, and it has a very smooth mouthfeel even with a fairly light body.

Drinkability - The sourness and nuttiness may get a little overpowering after drinking a decent amount of this stuff, so I think that this takes away from its overall drinkability, but certainly not from its flavor alone.

Overall, this is a decent brown ale in all categories except for its superb nuttiness and curious sourness. It has decent drinkability and a very good mouthfeel. Recommended.

 1,776 characters

Photo of OlaB
4.06/5  rDev +2.3%
look: 3.75 | smell: 4 | taste: 4.25 | feel: 3.75 | overall: 4

Gives a hazy dark brown color. A small top of foam that disolves rapid, some islands of foam do stay there most of the time. Good lacings on the glass.

S: much fruits like plums and cherries, dried fruits like raisins and dates. Burned sugar I also sense along with caramel malts.

T&F: starts of with the fruits in the flavour , the yeasty sweetness is in the background. In the middle I sense more of spices in the flavours, bitterness from the hops are also there in the finishing, and the aftertaste is lasting for a good period.

O: a good belgian dark. This brewer almost always deliver good beers and this one is no exemptions.

 639 characters

Photo of Orrshow
4.1/5  rDev +3.3%
look: 4 | smell: 4 | taste: 4 | feel: 4 | overall: 4.5

Appearance – Pours a deep mahogany with lots of nice tan head. The head retains well.

Smell – Very fruity upon the first whiff. There is some yeast, lots of spice, plums, and sugar. Nicely balanced and pleasant.

Taste – I liked my first sip because this beer had all those nice dark Belgian flavors without the bite that most have. It is sweet with lots of dark fruit flavor, some coriander, and a touch of alcohol. A nice effect.

Mouthfeel – Relatively creamy. Carbonation is a little tickly. Right for the style.

Drinkability – Great.

This is a solid beer. Nothing outstanding but very reliable.

 620 characters

Photo of jlervine
4.24/5  rDev +6.8%
look: 5 | smell: 3.5 | taste: 4.5 | feel: 4 | overall: 4.5

Deep brown body with a thick, light tan head that sticks around for hours. Perfect. The smell is sweet, with a hint of peppery spicy flavors. The taste is smooth and mellow with an almost herbal finish. Incredibly smooth. The mouthfeel is nice and warm, very inviting, coating, yet light on the palate. Very nice, extremely drinkable.

 334 characters

Photo of rec
3.2/5  rDev -19.4%
look: 3 | smell: 3 | taste: 3.5 | feel: 3 | overall: 3

The brew appears a deep amber with a bubbly head that dissipates quickly but laces relatively well.

The aroma isn't pleasing to my nose, smeling of alcohol and bland nuts, mostly.

You can't really taste the alcohol, it's concealed by a complex mixture with fruits such as plum and cherry, with hints of caramel. However, nothing really stands out as delightful nor awful, but is a well balanced mixture despite the lack of highlights.

It generally tastes quite generic although very diferent than many of its dark ale brothers and is perhaps a tad over-carbonated, as well as watery.

 592 characters

Photo of FleeVT
4.05/5  rDev +2%
look: 4 | smell: 4 | taste: 4 | feel: 4.5 | overall: 4

Tall green 750ml bottle poured into a goblet.

A: Pours a deep mahogany with cream head that starts out at 2 fingers and quickly retreats to 1/2 finger. Lacing clings to glass side. Very tiny bubbles of streaming carbonation.

S: Predominately malty with a mix of both sweet and yeast. A little bit of biscuit. With some swirling you can pick up some dark fruits.

T/M: Initial taste, a dry brew with a nice quick kick in the ass-end. Medium body with a creamy smoothness that disguises the alcohol bite in the back. Semi-sweet malts present as a mix of raisin and some other esters. There is almost a candy like medicinal quality in the back of your throat, but not an aftertaste.

 681 characters

Photo of brantadid
3.06/5  rDev -22.9%
look: 4 | smell: 3 | taste: 3 | feel: 3 | overall: 3

Poured a brownish ruby color. Quite dark. Very thin, white head diminishing very quickly.

Sweet, malty nose. Yeast is present but hardly overpowering. Some dark fruit in nose.

Pretty high carbonation. Nice fizzy quality to this beer. Very sweet toasted malts on the front palate followed by some chocolate and fig flavors. Warmed a bit to reveal a slight sour quality.

Very light mouthfeel. Not viscous at all. Rather thin, but nice.

 438 characters

Photo of bigbubba
4.08/5  rDev +2.8%
look: 4.5 | smell: 4 | taste: 4.5 | feel: 3.5 | overall: 3.5

This beer has a nice dark reddish amber color with a thick foamy tan head. Lots of tiny bubbles racing to the top. It has a strong Belgian aroma, very spicy and yeasty with a slight musty or earthy tone. The flavor is great, very fruity but not too sweet. The mouthfeel is a little thin for my taste in an 8% beer, but for this style it's probably about normal. Drinkability is ok, but I think I'd have a hell of a headache if I spent the night drinking these.

 460 characters

McChouffe from Brasserie d'Achouffe
3.97 out of 5 based on 1,101 ratings.
  • About Us

    Your go-to website for beer (since 1996), publishers of BeerAdvocate magazine (since 2006) and hosts of world-class beer events (since 2003). Respect Beer.
  • BeerAdvocate Microbrew Invitational

    Join us June 2-3, 2017 in Boston, Mass. for beer, cider, mead, kombucha and sake from over 70 small producers.

    Learn More
  • Subscribe to BeerAdvocate Magazine

    Support uncompromising beer advocacy and award-winning, independent journalism with a print subscription to BeerAdvocate magazine.

    Subscribe