Brooklyn Cuvee Noire (Old Version) | Brooklyn Brewery

very good
78 Ratings
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Brooklyn Cuvee Noire (Old Version)Brooklyn Cuvee Noire (Old Version)

Brewed by:
Brooklyn Brewery
New York, United States

Style: Belgian Strong Dark Ale

Alcohol by volume (ABV): 10.60%

Availability: Rotating

Notes / Commercial Description:
No notes at this time.

Added by palma on 10-13-2010

This beer is retired; no longer brewed.

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Ratings: 78 |  Reviews: 61
Photo of ToAzwethinkweizm
4.25/5  rDev +11%
look: 4.5 | smell: 4.5 | taste: 4.5 | feel: 4 | overall: 3.5

Reviewed on 28 November 2010, on tap at the Tap & Mallet in Rochester, NY.

Served in a 10oz snifter upon request, appears a light chocolate brown in the light, 1-finger head literally overflowing in the glass, head is beige, head reduces to a permanent thin film with rich initial lacing that turned out to be a little runny, and then later down the glass the lacing looked like carefully woven drapes.

Taste is spectacular. I'm not typically a fan of Belgian styles, but this beer puts out on the first date and I'm quite impressed. Reminds me of a tripel, although I'm no expert yet with Belgians. I don't get any tastes of raspberry except for the aftertaste, which is sooo mysterious.

WHAT THE HELL? There is no raspberry but it's telling my brain that there is some. I don't get it....whatever.... there you go, high marks. The Belgian yeasts overwhelm the nose while lightly toasted malts and a touch of chocolate flirt with the palate. Slightly bitter coffee tones hang out with the palate between sips. This beer renewed my faith in Belgian styles. I would love to try this again.

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Photo of CHickman
3.78/5  rDev -1.3%
look: 4 | smell: 3.5 | taste: 4 | feel: 3 | overall: 4

Pours opaque black in color with a 1 finger creamy tan head that faded quickly and left very good lacing sticking all over the glass and a ring or cream around the top - looks like a stout.

Smells of roasted malt, toasted grains, cocoa, caramel, molasses, burnt wood or like it was barrel aged, maybe a hint of nut and light yeast; very light yeast aroma considering this is a Belgian style ale.

Tastes like it smells, with smoky malts, toasted grains, liqorice, dark fruit like date, caramel, syrup, vanilla, chocolate, cocoa, burnt wood and mild yeast; it had the funky penny taste from the yeast at the end. Overall smoky robust flavor that is complex and well balanced.

Mouthfeel is thin with light carbonation, a medium body and a metallic finish on the dry side. The beer and experience of it gets better as it warms, and I would definitely have this again. Recommend trying this nice offering from Brooklyn, which has a good kick to it that you can feel after one beer.

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Photo of ShogoKawada
3.87/5  rDev +1%
look: 3 | smell: 3.5 | taste: 4 | feel: 4.5 | overall: 4

Missed this beer a few times so I'm glad I got a chance to sit down w/ it. $6 for a 12oz pour into an oversized wine glass @ The Gingerman in Norwalk, CT.

A- The beer looks still, little to no carbonation visible and the beer itself is a deep dark almost purpleish black.

S- A bit boozy, undefined dark fruit... plums and dark cherries I guess.

T- Fruity, great intense roasted malt flavor and a bit of a peppery yeast. Hop bitterness cuts through some of the more decadent sweet notes. A little boozy, but pretty mild overall.

M- Thick and rich, lower carbonation seems to suit this one just fine. Flavors stay on the tongue and beckon for another sip. Despite the boozy notes in the taste the beer is not hot.

D- Fairly high- this would be a great 'special occasion' beer I'd like to see bottled in 750mls next to local 1 and 2. A great stab at a BSDA by Brooklyn.

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Photo of mdfb79
3.38/5  rDev -11.7%
look: 4 | smell: 3.5 | taste: 3 | feel: 4 | overall: 3.5

From 11/17/10 notes. Had on tap at Churchkey in Washington, DC.

a - Pours a jet black color with almost no head and light carbonation.

s - Smells of roasted malts, dark fruits, fig, and some smokey malts.

t - Taste is smokey, roasted malts again up front, followed by weak dark fruits, raisins and figs, and finally alcohol. Ok but a step down from the smell.

m - Medium body and low carbonation.

d - An OK beer from Brooklyn, but not their finest. I usually am a big fan of their Brewmaster Reserve series beers, but this one didn't really do it for me. Probably wouldn't order again.

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Photo of drewd0g
4/5  rDev +4.4%
look: 4 | smell: 4 | taste: 4 | feel: 4 | overall: 4

Growler from DeCicco's in Ardsley on 11/24/10
Poured into chimay chalice.
I tried finding some info on this beer but couldn't find much
Nice beer from the people at Brooklyn. The color is pretty dark, just about black. Poured with a decent head, most of it dissipated pretty quickly. the smell is awesome, smells like berries and subtle maltiness. Tastes good too, almost like elderberries or something cant quite put my finger on it. It almost tastes like something that would come from St. Bernardus (for some reason that's who i thought of when i tasted it). The mouthfeel is thinner than i expected, not to filling, Pretty drinkable too, and at only $12 a growler definitely a good purchase. I enjoyed it.

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Photo of scootny
4.42/5  rDev +15.4%
look: 4 | smell: 4.5 | taste: 4.5 | feel: 4 | overall: 4.5

This is a pleasant surprise. A rich but quaffable BSDA. Good sized light tan head with a respectable amount of lace on the sides as it slowly fades and as I drink. Smell is quite inviting with notes of banana overlaying dark fruits. Figs meld into dates and raisin. A good Belgian yeast and sweet brown bread. Taste is follows the nose with a bit of the floor malt that first showed up in the Backbreaker strong ale. Nice roasted malt chocolaty-ness There is a wonderful mocha aspect that is showing itself as well. The coffee aspect gets bigger as the beer finishes with a mild bitterness and gentle earthiness. Feel is crisp and lighter than the density of flavors would have you think. Still some weight though. Carbonation is gentle but enough to make the beer dance on your tongue. Super drinkable. There is no trace of alcohol in the taste and the feel while flexing a touch of girth is more like a nut brown. You start out wanting to session this one and then the surprise abv shows up. Sneaky stuff here. I love it!

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Photo of drabmuh
3.48/5  rDev -9.1%
look: 4 | smell: 3.5 | taste: 3.5 | feel: 3 | overall: 3.5

Beer is black / brown and clear at the corners of the snifter, with a wispy brown head that forms a halo and leaves some lacing on the glass, moderate carbonation.

Aroma is quite roasty with a mild sweetness and some ash.

Beer is thinner than expected, strong bitterness from the grains in the back and an ashy finish. There is some mild sweetness in the front palate, I don't know what I expected but I didn't expect this. I would cautiously have it again.

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

On tap @ Armsby Abbey.

A- Black in a snifter with a nice off white head of about one finger. A creamy ring leaves a nice coat of fine lace.

S- Lots of dark fruit up front, plums and raisins. Figs are there with a nice laid back Belgian yeast and spice influence.

T- Certainly dark fruit (plums, raisin, fig) infused nicely throughout. Refined yeast influence adds to the balance. Some roasty malt makes this "noir". Bread in the finish.

MF- Creamy body characteristic of the style. Smooth moderate carbonation and some warmth.

DB- A balanced and flavorful take on the style. The dark fruit is nice and the yeast works well as it does not overpower. Fairly complex.

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Photo of glid02
4/5  rDev +4.4%
look: 4 | smell: 4 | taste: 4 | feel: 4 | overall: 4

On-tap at Taco Mac Metropolis in Atlanta.

Pours a dark purplish-brown color with a half-finger slightly off-white head. The head recedes into a wispy layer on top leaving decent lacing.

Smells of neutral dark malts with large amounts of spices - clove with good amounts of brown sugar. Also present are solid amounts of dark fruits - plums and raisins being the standouts.

Tastes similar to how it smells. Slightly sweet dark malt flavors kick things off and are joined quickly by large amounts of ripe and mildly syrupy dark fruit flavors - plums and raisins as with the aroma but now with hints of tangy figs. Midway through the sip good amounts of spices work their way into things, clove mostly with mild amounts of brown sugar and even milder amounts of cardamom. The spices and malt flavors carry through to a crisp ending.

Mouthfeel is good. It's got a nice thickness with smooth carbonation.

Drinkability is also good. I finished my glass without a problem and could have another.

Overall this beer didn't wow me in any way but instead it's another well-balanced beer from Brooklyn. Worth a shot if you see it around.

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Photo of BARFLYB
3.42/5  rDev -10.7%
look: 3.5 | smell: 4 | taste: 3 | feel: 3.5 | overall: 3.5

on tap at Hulmeville Inn inside a pint glass. I vow to never miss another brewmaster's reserve after missing Cookie Jar, but that was my fault.

A dark BSDA that looks stoutish from the tap and in the hand but up to the light it comes off deep brown with some red and purpilish tints up towards the heavens. A sparse cap that is barely even a cap if that makes sense, no lace. Smell is the best part. I get some dark fruit, plum action with some vanilla, Slight bready yeasting, Taste is subdued, coming off like a BSDA with some small porter qualities, at least to me. Feel is medium light carbed, kinda watery, not up to par, I drank my pint and that's it.

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Photo of Thorpe429
3.68/5  rDev -3.9%
look: 4 | smell: 3.5 | taste: 3.5 | feel: 4 | overall: 4

On tap at Churchkey. Served in a snifter.

The pour is quite dark. A nice shade of brown with a long-sitting head that lasts for a bit of time. There is some slight lacing on the sides of my glass; actually, one side of my glass, which has a pretty nice streak of lace all across it. The nose starts out a bit faint with some slight notes of chocolate as well as a light touch of dark fruits. Some mild date and raisin notes are there to fill things out.

The taste brings more roast and is slightly dry. In addition to dates, I get a bit of purple plum alongside some lightly-bitter chocolate. The body is light-to-medium and a bit light for the flavors. Pretty low carbonation and the body is slightly creamy. Pretty interesting a solid brew.

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Photo of TheManiacalOne
4.05/5  rDev +5.7%
look: 4 | smell: 4 | taste: 4 | feel: 4.5 | overall: 4

On-tap 11/15/2010 at Pitcher's Pub in Cumberland, RI, served in a goblet glass.

A: The beer is a dark brown color, with a short off-white head that fades quickly and leaves a thin lace on the glass.

S: The aroma contains light roasted malts, dark fruit, Belgian yeast, some spice and a touch of hops.

T: The taste starts out bready with flavors of Belgian yeast and a hearty roasted malt character. Then some mild sweetness comes in from flavors of dark fruit, some chocolate and some spices. The hops presence is mild but complementary and brings a good balance. The after-taste is slightly bready and slightly sweet.

M: Crisp and very smooth, medium body, medium carbonation, finish is slightly sticky.

D: Tasty, goes down easily, slightly filling, good kick, good representation of style, this a good darker Belgian beer with a lot of flavor and substance making it worth drinking for a while.

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Photo of plaid75
4/5  rDev +4.4%
look: 4 | smell: 4 | taste: 4 | feel: 4 | overall: 4

On draft at The Waterfront, Brooklyn.

Poured a deep black hue with a one finger foamy tan head. There was good retention and lacing.

The smell featured a light esters and pronounced roasted barley.

The taste consisted of upfront hits of roasted malt and yeast esters. A slowly developing sweetness appeared toward the finish along with some traces of alcohol.

The mouthfeel was typical of the style.

Overall a tasty and complex ale.

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

Reluctantly picked up a 1/2 growler of this after a tiny taste. I wasn't wild about the sip or two I had but was intrigued still to give it a shot since the Brewer's Reserves seem to be one time only shots and it is a BSDA which I do love.

A - Poured into a snifter a deep dark purple almost black, but something about it tells me I'm seeing purple and not black. Not much head to speak of and what's there is gone quick, but there are trace notes of lacing on the side of the glass. Definitely looks more stout-like than BSDA. 2nd pour had way more of a head, but still looks stouty to me.

S - Dark fruit with some sort of unique nutmeg like thing going on. Definitely a malt monster with a sweet soft almost roasted like quality.

T - Slightly different from that initial taste I had when I picked up the growler the other day. Seems more blended and balanced now and whatever was so odd about it at the taste seems to have chilled out on my pallete. It really is all malt flavored. The suggestion of dark fruits is there, but in reality all I taste is malts. For a BSDA it is not my fav, that being said it is a really good brew and has something very unique about it. I really dig the flavor of the roasted malt and the sweetness isn't overwhelming by any means.

M - Medium bodied and pretty cooling in my mouth. Nothing too wild...leaves a unique aftertaste.

D - Glad I went in for the 32oz. I've missed several of the brewmaster reserves and was bummed about it so I'm glad to give this one a go. It's no Local 2, but seems like a different animal altogether, it's uniqueness would make me revisit it if given the opportunity.

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Photo of JoePat
4.3/5  rDev +12.3%
look: 4 | smell: 4 | taste: 4.5 | feel: 5 | overall: 4

This beer poors a very, very dark brown verging on black with a a thick kaki head that fills the glass with lacing on its way down.

I pick up dark roasty and dark fruit notes in the aroma with a huge clove smell.

The flavor has a lot of clove to it with some nice dark malt roast and fruitiness. Supprisingly smooth for a 10% beer.

Smooth creamy mouthfeel that keeps you wanting another drink. Clean and freash with no alcohol dryness.

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

A deceptively mild beer for the alcohol punch lurking within. Classic Belgian yeast and candy sugar notes, with some mildly roasted malt flavors in the middle. Just a bit of light fruityness, and quite easy to drink - this one easily slips up on you.

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Photo of vfgccp
3.96/5  rDev +3.4%
look: 4 | smell: 3 | taste: 4.5 | feel: 4 | overall: 4

A - Beautiful, glossy black-plum (the review before me nailed it with "plum", good call) with a lacy cream colored head.

S - Mild and inviting with a light hop character and almost no booze. The absence of alcohol was surprising considering the ABV.

T - Wonderfully complex with smooth transitions between flavors. The malt hangs around throughout the entire flavor profile, and it plays well with the more nuanced flavors. I caught bitter-sweet fruits like kumquat and cranberry, and a bit of almost tanniny-leather.

M - The body was incredibly light, and had a dryness that I wasn't expecting on the first sip, but quickly grew to enjoy.

D - Dangerously drinkable. I ordered a glass on tap with every intention of pairing it with one of my local gastro-pubs great burgers, but wound up finishing it before the food got to the table, and the booze definitely caught up to me.

O- I'm a fairly novice beer drinker, having tried maybe 100 different beers in my life, but I've never had a beer like this before. The appearance, taste and body (particularly the body) evoked more memories of wine's I've had than beers. Not a beer for everyone, but it's one that I really enjoyed.

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Photo of despainmakesbeer
3.88/5  rDev +1.3%
look: 4 | smell: 3.5 | taste: 4 | feel: 4 | overall: 4

Dark, almost plumbish color/tint. Thinner head and lighter h color than expected. Roasty notes with compliments of fruits. Decent carbination with tasty fruit notes such as hints of orange well mixed with the usual taste resembling quads, only slightly toastier. Alcohol content is vaguely present in the back of the throat. Thinnner and more drinkable than one might expect for a quad. delicious and warming. The heavier sweetness helps to offset the alcohol content. While the beginning of the drink is big and complex, the drink finishes relatively dry and quickly for the style. Over all a good beer.

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Photo of BEERchitect
3.75/5  rDev -2.1%
look: 4 | smell: 4 | taste: 3.5 | feel: 3.5 | overall: 4

A strong Belgian dark ale with a pleasant heavy toast character that was not expected.

The beer pours a dark brown color with mohogany/purple-ish strands toward the edges. A dense, froathy head forms on the beer with a heafty blanket and holds firm for the majority of the session. Light lacing. The beer just seems a bit bogged down by its own weight.

Fruity and toasty, the nose has an intricate display of plumbs, grapes, licorice, and figs in contrast to malty sweetness, toasty, toffee richness.

Flavors take the same approach with a lead of sweet caramelized sugars paired with the dark/stone fruits, red grapes and anise. As the sweetness and fruitiness fade into the mid palate, the spicy orange peel, peppery, and alcohol balance the sweetness and allow the toasty robust flavors to add bite, complexity, and dryness in the finish.

Sweetly weighted ealry for a full and robust texture, not quite creamy or malty. Sugary feel hurts early on but is short lived. Drying out nicely, the beer takes on a toasty-dry finish with a mild sugary/fruity linger.

There's a moment in the middle of the beer that has a soft confecionate sweetness with the fruity esters that weave into the toasty notes that is very delicate and complex. But the majority of the beer seems overly sweet and sugary- reminds me of Bell's Hell Hath No Fury, but with a toastier finish.

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Photo of Ineedabeerhere
3.46/5  rDev -9.7%
look: 4 | smell: 3 | taste: 3.5 | feel: 4 | overall: 3.5

22oz counter pressure bomber from bierkraft.

Nearly black with some frothy light tan foam, dotty lace, not much retention.

Aroma is yeasty and fruity with some alcohol through the back. I get some hearty spice, the yeast character is ok with some darker notes. The taste is a little better, smooth and hearty with really interesting malt character complementary of the spicy yeast character, its slightly fruity but has a darker feeling to it. Smooth, good mouthfeel but can't help but feel its a slightly too thin at times. Alcohol well integrated. I polished this off easily though it didn't really impress me too much

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Photo of claspada
2.66/5  rDev -30.5%
look: 4 | smell: 3 | taste: 2 | feel: 2 | overall: 3.5

Aromas are of slight dark malts, mainly chocolate and coffee. But the main smell is of dark, burnt caramel presumably from candy sugar. Slight Belgian yeast as well.

Taste is pretty darn dissapointing. I was expecting a nice Belgian ale but I got a Belgian Stout. I mean I love Belgian Stouts but I was having a flight of stouts and wanted a nice sweet Belgian Dark ale to complement and this did not fulfil my expectations. Belgian stouts are great but are dominated in taste profile compared to American beefed up versions. Maybe this beer would be good on it's own but in a flight with Rogue 2x Chocolate stout and Great Divide Yeti it's flavor is lost.

Maybe I am too harsh on Brooklyn but this beer falls flat for me. I was hoping and expecting much more based on the reviews but I mean as a Belgian Dark ale or a Belgian Stout this beer left me wanting much more.

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Photo of david18
4.12/5  rDev +7.6%
look: 4 | smell: 4.5 | taste: 4 | feel: 4 | overall: 4

I had a tasting and then a twelve ounce pour of this at the Amsterdam Ale House on Manhattan's Upper West Side.

It was dark but not quite stout-dark. However, as a dark belgian, it had a lot of stout characteristics. It had a roasty aroma, like a stout or a porter, stays on your tongue for a while, etc. But there was definitely a belgian yeast flavor as well. The head was tan and not very big. Mouthfeel, as I said, had a good stout after tongue and the drinkability was considerably good for a beer this strong.

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Photo of axeman9182
4.1/5  rDev +7%
look: 4 | smell: 4 | taste: 4 | feel: 4 | overall: 4.5

12oz pour, this review is generated from tasting notes from a lunchtime visit to Rattle n Hum last week.

Cuvee Noire pours black, but not stout black. The tan head is thin, but sticks around for a decent amount of time. There's also a bit of lacing. For what was probably a middling pour at the bar, overall it looks pretty decent. The nose is of highly roasted malts, very dark chocolate and a little esppresso, and some spicy yeast flavors. The beer tastes just as the aroma promises. Bitter dark chocolate and some espresso lead things off. Any hop influence disappears into the transition into the yeasty flavors. Spicy peppercorn is definitely the most prominent of those, and the result is Cuvee Noire making me think of it as a black saison (it does have a certain similarity to Goose Island Pepe Nero. The mouthfeel is also very saison-like. Body is light, but avoids being watery in nature. There's plenty of bubbly, expressive carbonation that keeps the beer exciting. I greatly enjoyed my glass of Cuvee Noire. as previously stated, the best comparison I can come up with is a black saison (and one that hides its alcohol fairly well). Another solid entry from Brooklyn's Brewmaster's Reserve line.

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Photo of DefenCorps
3.62/5  rDev -5.5%
look: 3.5 | smell: 4 | taste: 3.5 | feel: 3.5 | overall: 3.5

On tap at Rattle n Hum the other night

Very dark brown with reddish highlights. Thin brown head. Nose has earthy English hops, licorice, cocoa, and quite a bit of spicy yeast as well. The palate opens with quite a bit of cocoa and spice with moderate fruit, blend of light and dark fruit. Yeast is moderately expressive, with a little spice and some phenols . The mid-palate is a little watery. The finish is a blend of fruity sweetness and spice, in a way i don't care for too much. Alcohol is well hidden. I'd imagine this would pair quite well with food, but as a standalone beer, I do not care for it too much.

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Photo of hoppymcgee
3.58/5  rDev -6.5%
look: 4 | smell: 3.5 | taste: 4 | feel: 4 | overall: 2.5

Had on tap at The Gate in Brooklyn, NY. Opted for a small pour because of the lack of reviews so far.

A: Blackbier with a nice light ring of foam that lingers for a while.

S: Belgian yeast, some spiciness, maybe even a little flowery.

T: Peanut butter...and jelly? Some nuttiness, slightly woody, and finishes bitter.

M: Well carbonated and on the heavier bodied side.

D: As filling as eating a peanut butter and jelly sandwich.

Overall, what's the number one word that comes to mind when you hear "Brooklyn"? Unique.

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Brooklyn Cuvee Noire (Old Version) from Brooklyn Brewery
3.83 out of 5 based on 78 ratings.
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