La Chouffe (Blonde)
Brasserie d'Achouffe

La Chouffe (Blonde)La Chouffe (Blonde)
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Strong Ale - Belgian Pale
Ranked #2
Ranked #1,404
4.23 | pDev: 9.93%
Brasserie d'Achouffe
La Chouffe (Blonde)La Chouffe (Blonde)
Notes: The gnomes of Fairyland are particularly fond of this golden beer. LA CHOUFFE, with its slight hoppy taste, combining notes of fresh coriander and fruity tones, is the drink which gives them their zest for life. At least, that's what these imps say when they are thirsty. Their secret used to be jealously guarded from one generation to the next until the day they shared the recipe with humans to seal their friendship. Of all the legends from the wonderful region of the Belgian Ardennes, the tale of LA CHOUFFE is the one which most merits re-telling.
Reviews: 983 | Ratings: 2,849 | Log in to view all ratings and sort
Reviews by TheLongBeachBum:
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TheLongBeachBum from California

4.15/5  rDev -1.9%
look: 4.5 | smell: 4.5 | taste: 4 | feel: 4 | overall: 4

A 75cl green glass wine style bottle that has a screen printed label. “LA” appears above the word “CHOUFFE” in red lettering. A wizened gnome completes the presentation. Labeled as 8,0% alc/vol & described as an ‘Artisanal Belgian Golden Ale’. No freshness date.

A clear golden body is punctuated only with innumerate streamers, which all feverishly race upwards to support the huge white head that rapidly forms when being poured. The head is rocky, cratered & densely packed with small bubbles with a stiff egg-white consistency that lends staying power. Nevertheless, it was awesome to watch it slowly “pop” away & collapse to a thin, but smooth, ½” covering. A Looker!

A light Saison-like odor permeated the air as I cracked off the crown cap. Spices & damp wet yeasty bread odors mixed in a freshly kneaded dough lend a tingly barnyard feel to the nasal passage. Medium in strength, but the spicy coriander makes good in the back of the smells department. Quite special.

Sweet malts & a spicy hop like character at the start. The middle hints at the 8% alcohol, the latter end has a slightly drying coriander feel. It is a nice Golden Ale, but it is like brilliant student that can’t be bothered to try his best, it does no more than it has to – it’s almost self-deprecating of its own potential. I felt this beer could offer much more; it’s a straight B Student, but it could so easily be an A++ with very little effort.

I expected a bit more; it was light & almost airy at times but still wholesome (?!). When it warmed it improved, but it lost some Drinkability as it approached room temperature. Better towards the lower end of the 50-55°F range as recommended on the label.

The 75cl bottle was a great wind-down from a difficult Monday at work. It went well with a few slices of freshly baked white bread & sharp mature Cheddar Cheese with HP Brown Sauce. The 8% is well-balanced in the beer & aids the thirst quenching capacity. No complaints here.

Overall: Better than expected, but not as great as I remember, either my memory is failing me & rose-tinted - or has the beer changed? Probably the former! For $8 each a bottle, I think I would surely pass on McChouffe, the La Chouffe is so-so (if I have the money), but I would however still purchase the N’Ice Chouffe, which is perhaps the best of the bunch for me & probably worth the money.

A solid Golden Ale with no faults, but just not that many superior features. Nice but expensive. I’ll stick with Duvel until this drops in price.

Nov 25, 2003
More User Reviews:
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ThisWangsChung from Maryland

4.07/5  rDev -3.8%
look: 4.25 | smell: 4 | taste: 4 | feel: 4 | overall: 4.25

Pours a slightly cloudy golden color, with about two and a half fingers of white-colored head. The stronger retention near the center of the glass suggests a well-hopped brew, but a part of that could be do to the current of effervescence rising to the top. Small splotches of lacing sticks to the glass.

I really pick up the coriander on the nose, but it's subtle. Compared to something like Duvel, there seems to be a greater focus on stone fruits (like peach and apricot) over citrus. There are additional touches of candied sugar, white bread, black pepper, and white grape. This certainly isn't some two-bit Duvel clone, it's a nuanced and slightly different from the pack that's just as finely integrated as the best.

The opening flavors are very fruity, bringing tons of peach, apricot, white grape, and even a little cherry. This is practically a fruit salad in terms of flavor. Meanwhile, the second half displays the noble hops, coriander, and estery spiciness very well. A pleasant wave of candied sugar also shows up on the back end, but it doesn't encumber the taste buds excessively. This is an incredibly bold-tasting and deceptively complex brew, though it is a hair on the sweet side for me. Nonetheless, it remains nicely balanced and cohesive.

It initially feels full and sweet, until the vibrant carbonation fills out and moderately dries the finish like a champ. Still, it remains merely semi-dry due to the residual sugar. Drinkability is very good, not quite great - I really enjoy sipping on this, though, and I could easily crave another bottle.

This is excellent. It's slightly bigger and more complex than Duvel, while still retaining an easygoing nature. It's like one of those ninja gnomes from Ratchet and Clank - sneaky as fuck. I'll definitely get this again.

4.07/5: Gnome joke about it, this rocks

Oct 03, 2016
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CantDrinkEveryBeer from Virginia

4.31/5  rDev +1.9%
look: 4.5 | smell: 3.5 | taste: 4.5 | feel: 5 | overall: 4.5

Came highly recommended by the shopkeeper at the new Craft Beer Cellar that opened up in town. Came home and saw the great reviews her on BA and got quite excited. I have to say, I think it lives up to the hype.

Look: Poured into a tulip glass. Three finger of foamy head, and a beautiful, rich amber color.

Smell: Gentle notes of lemon zest and wheat, a quite delicate smell.

Taste: Sweet bready maltiness, lemon, with a hops spice and little bit of pleasant bitterness in the finish. The flavor is complex, moreso than I'm capable of describing. There's a subtle evolution in the taste as rolls over and sits on the tongue. It's delicious.

Mouthfeel: Thick, smooth, pillowy, soft. Very pleasant.

Overall: This is a quite acclaimed beer, and it's not hard to see why. It tastes fantastic. Not much more to say, really. Try it if you get the chance.

Aug 06, 2017
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BEERMILER12 from Maine

4.17/5  rDev -1.4%
look: 4.25 | smell: 4 | taste: 4.25 | feel: 4 | overall: 4.25

Best before 08/2017, so here we go!

A: Pours a golden yellow color with a large head that slowly fades down to a nice cap that leaves good lacing

S: Some moderate spice notes along with a good yeast and malt influence. Light fruitiness in there from the yeast as well

T: Follows the nose, but with a little more kick. Starts off with the spicy and fruity yeast and goes into some moderate alcoholic esters and some additional coriander. Malt kicks in a little to tame the yeast a bit. Finishes with lingering spices and moderate malt sweetness

M: Medium bodied with moderate carbonation

O: A well-deserved classic. Nice to sip on and enjoy any time. Definitely worth checking out if you're a fan of Belgians

Aug 25, 2017
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RoyalT from Ohio

3.97/5  rDev -6.1%
look: 4 | smell: 4.5 | taste: 4 | feel: 3.5 | overall: 3.5

Appearance – Nice, lacing head atop a light orange body.

Smell – Nice malt backbone to this spicy BSPA. This is heavily spiced. I can pick out some big Italian spices, like oregno and basil, but the major players are the powdery versions of pepper and coriander. There’s some light fruit in there as well, mostly melon and maybe some lime, that compliment the mix.

Taste – Ditto on the tongue. The deep, sharp spices guide the taste. The malt takes a back seat. This is mostly the spice show from the nose.

Mouthfeel – Surprisingly light in the mouth.

Drinkability – This is classic BSPA. It’s a little too spicy for my taste, but on-style nevertheless.

Sep 18, 2003
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GRPunk from Michigan

4.49/5  rDev +6.1%
look: 4.25 | smell: 4.5 | taste: 4.5 | feel: 4.5 | overall: 4.5

33 cl bottle from Copper Vine ($4.39 Fathers' Day present) best by 12 2016. Poured into a Duvel tulip.

A- A liberal pour creates 1-1/2 fingers of pillowy, off-white head atop the clean, golden body that shows just the slightest haze. There's plenty of carbonation rushing from the nucleation site to the surface. The head settles to a fully covering foam that leaves nice rings on the glass. My wife liked the logo as it reminded her of a recent family trip to Disney World.

S- Bold and complex. Right off the bat I get a combination of Belgian funk in the form of bubblegum mixing with lemon and husky grains. Somewhat reminiscent of a Hefeweizen. Hints of black pepper later on.

T- Oh that's nice. More of the lemon and funk mentioned in the aroma. The malts are sweet and grainy, like a sweetened cereal or cream of wheat. Maybe even hints of creamed corn? The alcohol is well hidden and comes off as sweet more than anything else. The finish is relatively clean, especially given some of the sweeter qualities, with spicy hops finishing it all off.

M- Creamy and full bodied. A light, alcohol warmth is quite smooth on the way down. Hops in the finish provide a nice bite.

O- A really tasty Belgian ale. The sweetness and citrus is a bit of a departure from the flavor profile I'd expect from the style, but really good. I could definitely enjoy a second bottle in a sitting. Not the cheapest beer, but something I'd buy again.

Aug 23, 2015
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SheepNutz from Kentucky

4.45/5  rDev +5.2%
look: 4.5 | smell: 4.5 | taste: 4.5 | feel: 4 | overall: 4.5

750mL bottle poured into a snifter. It pours a deep gold color with two fingers of head. There is a good amount of lacing left on the glass. The smell has lots of lemon and lime going on. It's slightly sweet as well. The taste is also sweet, with more citrus fruit coming through. A very pleasant flavor. The mouthfeel is decently thick and strong. The drinkability is great for an 8% brew. A damn fine beer. Thanks to Christina for this one, she made a wonderful selection.

Dec 13, 2004
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beerphilosopher from Illinois

3.48/5  rDev -17.7%
look: 3.5 | smell: 3 | taste: 4 | feel: 3.5 | overall: 3

Presents itself as a nice light golden color with just a bit of haze. Big, fluffy white head that lasts. Nose is of spices and fruit, primarily. Quite lively. Palate is interesting, indeed. Hoppier than expected, this one is quite fruity (some citrus), light malts, and candy sugar sweetness in there. Mouthfeel is light, and easily inbibed. Clean finish. I'm a pretty big Duvel fan ( I can prove it ... I pronounce it correctly) and this is somewhat Duvel-like. Definitely not a copy though. Give this one a try or two ...

Aug 07, 2006
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dbrauneis from North Carolina

4.09/5  rDev -3.3%
look: 3.75 | smell: 4 | taste: 4.25 | feel: 4 | overall: 4

A: Pours a hazy medium apricot/peach in color with light amounts of active visible carbonation rising from the bottom of the glass, significant amounts of fine to medium particles in suspension throughout the beer, and a faint amount of lemon yellow highlights. The beer has a finger tall foamy off-white head that reduces to a medium to large sized patch of medium thick film and a medium thick ring at the edges of the glass. Light amounts of lacing are observed.

S: Moderate aromas of light fruits (pear), spices, citrus (orange stands out), grainy malts, and just a hint of banana.

T: Upfront there is a light to moderate flavor of pale and grainy malts with a light amount of light fruit sweetness (mostly pear with a hint of apple). That is followed by moderate flavors of orange citrus and just a hint of banana. There is a light flavor of spices in the finish. Light amounts of bitterness in the finish which fades quickly.

M: Medium bodied with moderate amounts of carbonation. Relatively smooth.

O: Easy to drink and very enjoyable - lots of complexity to the flavor but still quite approachable. Definitely a sipper.

Oct 25, 2014
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TMoney2591 from Illinois

3.84/5  rDev -9.2%
look: 4 | smell: 3.75 | taste: 3.75 | feel: 4 | overall: 4

Served in a Duvel tulip glass.

Figured I'd give the store's last bottle of this a good home: mine. It pours a mostly clear gold topped by over a finger of lightly off-white foam. The nose comprises heavy Belgian yeast, light white bread, clove, a pinch of black pepper, light lemon peel, a hint of banana peel, and a touch of flowers. The taste brings in more of the same, with that heavy yeast character really coming to the fore. This isn't to say that the spices take a full backseat, but they are definitely subservient to the yeast. Lesser beers would suffer from this situation, but this yeast works well. The body is a light medium, with a light moderate carbonation and a drying finish. Overall, a very nice BSPA, not quite up there with Duvel and the other standard-bearers, but it comes pretty dern close.

Nov 14, 2011
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Jugs_McGhee from Louisiana

3.62/5  rDev -14.4%
look: 3.5 | smell: 4 | taste: 3.5 | feel: 3.5 | overall: 3.5

Bottle into Gouden Carolus goblet in low altitude Galway, Ireland. Beer obtained at McCambridges shoppe.

A: Pours a two finger head with slight cream, of fair thickness. Clear gold colour. Alive and appealing.

Sm: Cream lacing. Barley. Maybe some yeast. Extraordinarily fresh. A light but inviting aroma.

T: Lovely cream open to a body of very light barley and nicely balanced hops. I want to say there's almost a lemon ester in there. Well built for the style. The high ABV doesn't come through; you'd probably have to look at the bottle to know it was 8%.

Mf: Fizzy in a light, good way (as opposed to the overcarbonation fizz that ruins a beer). Teasingly coarse but as wet as it needs to be.

Dr: It's got a pretty steep price, but it's a good beer for fans of the style to try. It's too light for a stout lover like me, but it's a good example of the style and certainly worth a go for any beer fanatic.

Mar 07, 2011
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sierratwohearted from Virginia

4.53/5  rDev +7.1%
look: 4.5 | smell: 4 | taste: 4.75 | feel: 4.5 | overall: 4.75

Favorite of the style. Comparable to Duvel, but slightly better in taste-not as carbonated, coriander is subtle but evident.

Apr 05, 2015
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ChrisL24481 from New Hampshire

4.25/5  rDev +0.5%

Nov 19, 2013
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simoen from Belgium

2.66/5  rDev -37.1%
look: 2.75 | smell: 3 | taste: 2.5 | feel: 2.75 | overall: 2.5

mooie kleur en geur maar smaak valt tegen

Dec 20, 2014
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BrunEngr from New York

4.52/5  rDev +6.9%

Oct 05, 2014
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FaradayUncaged from Michigan

4.13/5  rDev -2.4%
look: 4.25 | smell: 4.25 | taste: 4 | feel: 4 | overall: 4.25

Apr 21, 2016
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LocusSolus from Poland

4.29/5  rDev +1.4%
look: 4.25 | smell: 4 | taste: 4.5 | feel: 4.25 | overall: 4.25

Sep 03, 2016
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BGDrock from Canada (ON)

4.22/5  rDev -0.2%
look: 4.25 | smell: 4 | taste: 4.25 | feel: 4.5 | overall: 4.25

Clear, faded copper body, covered with a foamy white holding a minute or two worth retention.
Aroma is fruity yeast and very mild spice and smoke. Intriguing and indecipherable.
Mysterious yeast notes all over the palate - baked fruit (apple, banana) with minimal sweetness, light caramel malt, a hit of umami, mild spices (clover, coriander). All of it blending as one, indescribable taste. High alcohol contributes a soothing heat in the finish, accompanied by a brief touch of hop bitterness, leaving you eager for another drink. Medium body and carbonation. Crisp but also slightly oily mouthfeel, keeping the palate excited.

Truly fun to drink, a guessing game. I'm a sucker for Belgian beers and this is a great one, with pronounced yeast notes and a lively feel. Complexity makes for great food pairings, particularly with cheese and charcuterie, but a burger would match the umami notes beautifully.

Jun 21, 2019
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marburg from Michigan

4.5/5  rDev +6.4%
look: 4.5 | smell: 4.5 | taste: 4.5 | feel: 4.5 | overall: 4.5

Effervescent, lively yellow-ish beer with a big head. A little hazy but fairly clear. Aggressively aromatic! Lemon, mashed peaches, and a certain spicy crispness. The level of spiciness in this beer that I can't even begin to discern the varied flavors -- orange peel, peach, lemon, coriander, cinnamon, yeast... They form a sort of Belgian beer yogurt with this beer's creamy mouthfeel. There's a lot going on here. Maybe too much so -- but there's no hint of the 8% anywhere to be found. This beer begs to be shared so everyone can experience the job -- and so the original drinker doesn't go into some sort of spice coma. Intense.

Nov 14, 2004
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DaggerEyes from New York

4.13/5  rDev -2.4%
look: 4.5 | smell: 4 | taste: 4 | feel: 4 | overall: 4.5

poured a cloudy gold with a one and a half finger high white head, that left delicate lacing behind.

nose of pepper, coriander, citrus and a little bit of honey

peach, grape skin, coriander, pepper

fairly active mouthfeel, medium bodied, foams up a little bit in the mouth.

A very enjoyable beer

Feb 07, 2008
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FrankK from Alabama

4.5/5  rDev +6.4%

Mar 04, 2012
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HopStoopid120 from Connecticut

5/5  rDev +18.2%

Dec 07, 2011
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bwyu from California

4.5/5  rDev +6.4%

Jan 21, 2012
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REDAMI from Ohio

4.17/5  rDev -1.4%
look: 4.25 | smell: 4 | taste: 4.25 | feel: 4 | overall: 4.25

Poured from 11.2 ounce bottle into Westvleteren chalice.

L - Honey gold pour, thin white head.

S - Mushroom funk, fresh orange, grassy notes.

T - Juicy orange, honey malts, candy sugar, vague pithy bitterness.

F - Semi-dry, powdery, moderate carbonation.

Despite it's 'strong' status, very drinkable. Not overly sweet or hoppy.

Sep 14, 2013
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Brewt from Australia

4/5  rDev -5.4%

Mar 12, 2013
La Chouffe (Blonde) from Brasserie d'Achouffe
Beer rating: 94 out of 100 with 2849 ratings