N'Ice Chouffe | Brasserie d'Achouffe

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N'Ice ChouffeN'Ice Chouffe
BA SCORE
4.07/5
Exceptional
1,277 Ratings
N'Ice ChouffeN'Ice Chouffe
BEER INFO

Brewed by:
Brasserie d'Achouffe
Belgium
achouffe.be

Style: Belgian Strong Dark Ale

Alcohol by volume (ABV): 10.00%

Availability: Winter

Notes / Commercial Description:
When the little animals in Fairyland hibernate, the Achouffe gnomes love to gather in their cottage. By the gentle firelight, they spend long evenings telling the best Ardennes stories while enjoying a delicious N’Ice CHOUFFE. Smooth and strong, with spicy notes of thyme and Curacao, this dark beer warms both hearts and atmospheres, making even the coldest winters joyful.

Added by Bierman9 on 12-14-2001

BEER STATS
Ranking:
#2,702
Reviews:
559
Ratings:
1,277
pDev:
9.83%
Bros Score:
4.19
 
 
Wants:
67
Gots:
239
Trade:
1
HISTOGRAM
 
User Ratings & Reviews
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Ratings: 1,277 |  Reviews: 559
Photo of Sammy
4/5  rDev -1.7%
look: 4 | smell: 4 | taste: 4 | feel: 4 | overall: 4

The king of Chouffe. Light head on dark orange colour. Medium mouthfeel. Spicey and yeast and malt aroma. Lace, some yeast, sugar. This is a controlled orange and spice beverage, worthy of the sip. Yes there could be thyme. 2006. Unique Belgian, surprising 10%.

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Photo of kylehay2004
3.61/5  rDev -11.3%
look: 4.5 | smell: 3.5 | taste: 3.5 | feel: 4 | overall: 3.5

Single finger head on a cloudy amber body. Lots of lacing. This is a fairly thick beer. Aroma is mostly light on the dark fruit with some fig and juniper. Overall aroma is light. Flavor is a semi sweet dark fruit however this is light. It is a little watered down. Medium in body and moderate to high carbonation. Overall not in my tops for Belgian dark strongs.

 362 characters

Photo of jaydoc
4/5  rDev -1.7%

Photo of Texasfan549
3.75/5  rDev -7.9%

Photo of UCLABrewN84
3.82/5  rDev -6.1%
look: 3 | smell: 3.5 | taste: 4 | feel: 4 | overall: 4

On tap at Blue Palms Brewhouse in Los Angeles, CA as part of their Jingle Bell Jubilee.

Pours a hazy dark brown with a 1/2 inch tan head that fades to nothing. No lacing on this beer. Smell is of malt, dark fruits (plums, prunes), and some mild spice aromas. Taste is of malt, the dark fruits, and a nice balance of spices. This beer has a good level of carbonation with a crisp and clean mouthfeel. Overall, this is a good BSDA with some very nice flavors going on.

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Photo of StonedTrippin
3.96/5  rDev -2.7%
look: 4.5 | smell: 3.5 | taste: 4 | feel: 4.5 | overall: 4

nice belgian take on a winter beer. pours dark berry red with a rising and lasting 3 inch head in a tulip glass. smells belgian yeasty and of sour cherries, possibly candy sugar, but this isnt a sweet aroma, just complex. taste has definitive notes of cherries, fresh ones, and a sturdy malt spine. brewed with thyme and orange peel, i didnt find it nearly as herbal as it seems to be promoted as being, but i didnt mind that. the orange peel is more bitter than fruity, but helps bring out some of the depth in the grain bill, a nice accent flavor all the way through. insanely easy drinking for how strong it is, the booze doesnt really come out in this at all. probably my favorite of all their beers so far, its perfect in the winter months, and represents everything i love in belgian beer in general. mouthfeel is belgian magic, smooth, not too heavy, and well carbonated. ten dollars for a small pour, but the flavor is worth it. unique winter brew and excellent with some live grateful dead cover tunes!

 1,011 characters

Photo of GRG1313
3.87/5  rDev -4.9%
look: 3.5 | smell: 4 | taste: 4 | feel: 4 | overall: 3.5

Pours a nice clear cinnamon brown with a hint of copper and with a nice off white head.

Nose is very spice and fruity apple and cinnamon/cherry;

Mouthfeel is rich and big and creamy. Mouthfilling.

Flavors of carmel malt dried cherry and big Belgian fruit with undertones of banana;

Finish is all malt, fruit and spices; this is really like a dessert ale! Drinkability is limited only because of the "dessert" quality and problematic food pairing. A full rich drink and a case of the bottle being a bit bigger and richer than the tap.

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Photo of kjkinsey
5/5  rDev +22.9%

Photo of spycow
4/5  rDev -1.7%

Photo of djrn2
2.5/5  rDev -38.6%

Photo of Knapp85
4.05/5  rDev -0.5%
look: 4 | smell: 4 | taste: 4 | feel: 4.5 | overall: 4

This beer poured out as a deep amber color, the head was white and pretty strong looking. The lacing on the glass was pretty good too. The smell of the beer has a nice spicy Belgian aroma to it. The taste brings those spicy flavors onto the tongue along with a nice yeasty flavor and a touch of roasted nuts. The mouthfeel was pretty good, well carbonated and drinkable. Overall the beer is a nice wintery brew. Has some good warming qualities to it.

 450 characters

Photo of nmann08
4.5/5  rDev +10.6%

Photo of westcoastbeerlvr
3.5/5  rDev -14%

Photo of t0rin0
4.25/5  rDev +4.4%

Photo of Taphouse_Traveler
4.06/5  rDev -0.2%
look: 3.75 | smell: 4 | taste: 4.25 | feel: 3.75 | overall: 4

Photo of metter98
4/5  rDev -1.7%
look: 4 | smell: 4 | taste: 4 | feel: 4 | overall: 4

A: The beer is hazy brownish amber in color. It poured with a finger high beige head that died down but for the most part left a thin layer of bubbles covering the surface.
S: The nose is sweet and has aromas of spices and notes of dark fruits.
T: The taste is very similar to the smell and also has some hints of oranges. Flavors of spices linger through the finish.
M: It feels medium-bodied and somewhat smooth on the palate with a moderate amount of carbonation.
O: The spices add an interesting twist to the style and make it a good beer to sip.

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Photo of biboergosum
4.15/5  rDev +2%
look: 4 | smell: 4 | taste: 4 | feel: 4.5 | overall: 4.5

750ml solid Burgundian bottle. Cute little fire-making elven imagery on the label.

This beer pours a hazy, sediment-strewn, dark red brick amber hue, with two fingers of fizzy, tightly foamy, and brown-flecked beige head, which leaves some irregular swaths of chunky lace around the glass as it evenly settles.

The aroma evokes soft dark fruit - wet figs, plump raisins, and dates - earthy thyme, pithy citrus, pale grainy malt, a touch of bready caramel, Belgian yeast, a bit of oily nuttiness, and a mild alcohol warming. Taste-wise, the overripe fruit - plum, prune, raisin, and dates - dominates at first, aided by a weirdly sedate crackery caramel malt, until a warm thyme spice and orange bitters dryness levels things off. Vaguely speaking of the 20-proof booze, it appears to be generally toothless throughout, which is an obvious ploy at subterfuge.

The carbonation is just a tad frothy as it meanders merrily along, the body a solid medium weight, smooth as all get out, and perhaps a wee bit creamy. It finishes off-dry, the various fruit esters not letting go for a second, buoyed by the lingering savoury spice. Oh yeah - the booze still seems egregiously AWOL.

Maybe it's because this bottle is approaching its end-of-shelf-life (July 2011), but, good grief is this 10-pointer easy to drink! The fruity malt, yeast, thankfully understated spice, and especially the heady alcohol, are all so very laid back, providing something approaching the oblivious bliss horizon. A pleasantly surprising twist on the strong dark Belgian ale paradigm, and yes, very n'ice - drum-roll/rim-shot, please!

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Photo of BEERchitect
4.5/5  rDev +10.6%
look: 4.5 | smell: 4.5 | taste: 4.5 | feel: 4.5 | overall: 4.5

Delicious beer! Typically Belgian S. D. Ale in that it's very berry like in flavor, sweetness, tartness, and intensity. Sweetened with cotton-candy sugars, barley malt, and spices. Full and rich on the palate without becoming thick or heavy. Sweetly alcoholic, but swirled around the berry tartness. Lightly woody, musky, dates, and figs. Finishes lightly sweet, tart, and spicy. Looks very much like prune-juice, but tastes much better. A firm, rocky head tops off this juicy beverage.

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Photo of kojevergas
3.15/5  rDev -22.6%
look: 3.5 | smell: 3.5 | taste: 3 | feel: 3 | overall: 3

75cl dark green glass bottle with standard pressure cap served into Chouffe 25cl stemware in low altitude Los Angeles, California. Reviewed live. Expectations are high. It was served almost fresh from the fridge, but not too cold.

A: Pours a two finger head of nice cream, decent thickness, and good retention for the high ABV. Colour is a dark caramel; nontransparent.

Sm: Candied sugar, light spice (clove?), caramelized malt, a dark ester, and cream. A moderate strength aroma. Consulting the label, I suppose the spice is thyme - but I have no idea what thyme smells like.

T: Candied sugar is heavy, but the finish is surprisingly light. The caramelized malt is a bit too emphasize for the balance, but it works alright. The spices are well placed but not overly prominent. It's a bit imbalanced, but the build is pleasant albeit unfocused. I wouldn't go so far as to call it simple, but it could have more depth.

Mf: A touch tingly on account of the candied sugar, but largely smooth and wet. Overly thick, but then that might have been necessary to cover the high ABV.

Dr: It hides its high ABV very well, and is built to style, but there's room for improvement. I'd try it on draught, but otherwise there's nothing special here.

 1,245 characters

Photo of oline73
5/5  rDev +22.9%

Photo of WillieThreebiers
4/5  rDev -1.7%

Photo of zeff80
3.73/5  rDev -8.4%
look: 3.5 | smell: 3 | taste: 4 | feel: 4 | overall: 4

A - Poured out a clear, burgundy color with a one-finger, off-white head of bubbly foam. It left thin rings of lace on the glass.

S - It smelled of spice and a tad bit of skunkiness. There was a touch of breadiness, too.

T - There was a nice presence of candy sugar with some bready malt. It had some good spiciness with a touch of dried fruit.

M - It was crisp, sharp and smooth. A medium bodied ale with a dry, clean finish.

O - This was a very nice tasting Belgian. The aroma had some issues but it delivered a great taste.

 530 characters

Photo of brentk56
3.85/5  rDev -5.4%
look: 4 | smell: 4 | taste: 4 | feel: 3.5 | overall: 3.5

Limited Edition 2005 (consumed 12/20/08)

Appearance: Pours a dark amber color with a frothy top most of which disappears, although the cap lasts a while and leaves some lace

Smell: The candi sugar jumps out in the aroma, which also displays an herbacious character from the thyme and curaçao peel; spice cake aroma, too

Taste: Opens with a spice cake flavor, with the herbacious bitterness taking over by mid-palate; after the swallow, the herbal flavors dominate, although there is plenty of raisiny residual sugar on the tip of the tongue

Mouthfeel: Medium body with low to moderate carbonation

Drinkability: This doesn't have the lively mouthfeel of most Belgians and perhaps that is due to its age, and I have to say that while the herbs add an interesting element to the beer, they aren't that enjoyable an adjunct to me

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Photo of superspak
4.1/5  rDev +0.7%
look: 4 | smell: 4 | taste: 4 | feel: 4 | overall: 4.5

750 ml bottle into tulip glass, bottled on 8/24/2012. Pours lightly hazy/cloudy deep ruby red color with a 1-2 finger fairly dense light khaki head with good retention, that reduces to a small cap that lingers. Spotty soapy lacing clings around the glass, with a good amount of streaming carbonation retaining the head. Aromas of big raisin, plum, cherry, fig, apple, orange peel, caramel, toast, dark candi sugar, clove, molasses, brown bread, herbal, light pepper, and yeast earthiness. Damn nice aromas with good balance and complexity of fruity/spicy yeast ester and dark/bready malt notes; with good strength. Taste of big raisin, plum, cherry, fig, apple, orange peel, caramel, toast, dark candi sugar, molasses, brown bread, clove, herbal, light pepper, and yeast earthiness. Lingering notes of raisin, plum, cherry, fig, apple, orange peel, caramel, toast, dark candi sugar, clove, molasses, brown bread, herbal, and yeast earthiness on the finish for a while. Damn nice complexity and big robustness of dark/bready malt and fruity/spicy yeast ester flavors; with a great malt/yeast flavor balance and zero cloying flavors after the finish. Medium carbonation and medium-full bodied; with a moderately slick, smooth, and lightly syrupy mouthfeel that is great. Alcohol is very well hidden with only a light warming present after the finish. Overall this is an excellent Belgian strong dark ale. All around great balance, robustness, and complexity of dark/bready malt and fruity/spicy yeast ester flavors; and very smooth to sip on for the big ABV. A very enjoyable offering.

 1,583 characters

Photo of Phyl21ca
3.95/5  rDev -2.9%
look: 4 | smell: 4 | taste: 4 | feel: 3.5 | overall: 4

Bottle: Poured a deep hazy golden/beige color ale with a huge foamy head with good retention and great lacing. Aroma of spices with some sweet malt and typical Belgian yeast. Taste is quite sweet with some dominating spices and a yeasty spicy finish. I didn’t think the Chouffe yeast came out as much as it did in their other beers. Body was above average with great carbonation and no alcohol was discernable.

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N'Ice Chouffe from Brasserie d'Achouffe
Beer rating: 4.07 out of 5 with 1,277 ratings