Bush De Noël | Brasserie Dubuisson Frères sprl

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BA SCORE
89
very good
458 Reviews
Bush De NoëlBush De Noël
BEER INFO

Brewed by:
Brasserie Dubuisson Frères sprl
Belgium
br-dubuisson.com

Style: Belgian Strong Dark Ale

Alcohol by volume (ABV): 12.00%

Availability: Winter

Notes / Commercial Description:
No notes at this time.

Added by Andreji on 12-08-2001

BEER STATS
Reviews:
458
Ratings:
851
Avg:
4
pDev:
16.75%
 
 
Wants:
53
Gots:
94
For Trade:
1
User Reviews
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Reviews: 458 | Ratings: 851
Photo of PreacherBrewer
4.4/5  rDev +10%
look: 4 | smell: 4 | taste: 4.5 | feel: 4 | overall: 5

This is a very well rounded brew. deep redish brown color with a nice 2 finger head. Caramel, vanilla, and malt are balanced. moderate and smooth mouthfeel. this beer screams balance. it's tasty, big, and balanced. a perfect christmas or holiday brew.

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Photo of Sigmund
4.4/5  rDev +10%
look: 4.5 | smell: 4.5 | taste: 4.5 | feel: 4.5 | overall: 4

250 ml Scaldis Noël bottle, bought at Borough Market, London. Pours with an an enormous lingering head, beer is clear, colour is deep reddish amber. Aroma of dark rum, sherry, oak, raisins, spices. Flavour is very sweet with dried fruits and whisky elements, but a distinct spiciness and decent hops prevent it from falling in the "cloying sweet & undrinkable" ditch. Alcoholic warmth in the mouthfeel, as expected from a 12% ABV beer, but not overwhelming or unpleasant. A very fine Christmas special in my book.

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Photo of OWSLEY069
4.4/5  rDev +10%
look: 4 | smell: 4 | taste: 4.5 | feel: 4 | overall: 5

Pours a clean reddish to copper color with an off white head. In the aroma, spice, fruit, and small alcohol notes. In the taste, dry cinnamon spice, a small sweet roast, and a dry alcohol hint. A spice bite and medium bodied mouthfeel, with a dry alcohol and small spice in the aftertaste. Big spice and a nice sipper.

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Photo of Shiredave
4.4/5  rDev +10%
look: 4 | smell: 4 | taste: 4.5 | feel: 5 | overall: 4.5

Arguably the prettiest little bottle in the business w/ its bright blue and red foil, sparkling silver snow over the welcomming lights of the snowbound Inn.

A blast of foam billows in the goblet kicking up a fluffy, rocky tan head, lace drips all around as it slowly quiets. Lovely red whisky color under a tawny sheet of fizzy foam. Flecks and flotsum of yeasty dregs stay suspened and swirl in the vigorous carbonation. A dark sandy trub remained in the bottle.

Aromas are remarkably soft - sugared fruit and brandy notes. Strong melon and cherry along side roasted grain scents of baking bread or fresh wort.

Warm full bodied and spicey with grassy hop flavor. Big malt body with firm alcohol character. Excellent fruit and berry flavors with port wine and Porter under / over tones. Dark grain character comes thru and balances the sharp hop and warming alcohol into an awsome sipping beer. Each sip explodes in the mouth with a flood of waxing and waning flavors.
Just right for a snowy Feb. day.
* The lil bottle is cute but it just tastes like more.

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Photo of four20man
4.4/5  rDev +10%
look: 4 | smell: 4 | taste: 5 | feel: 4 | overall: 4

Delicious!

Poured in a Belgian small glass on tap. Light Brown Sugar appearance as it cascades down then settle in the glass. Fluffy, thick head with the same light brown tint. Scents of fruity notes and bread (fruitcake?).
Taste is smooth, sweet at first. The strong alcohol of this beer is subtle, masked by the light hints of sugar, caramel, cinnamon and (coriander?). Light mouthfeel, but the sweet taste lingers and warms on it's way down.
Easy to drink several in a session, but beware! The character can sneak up on you, though it often leaves one in a cheery mood. Just what one would need when properly celebrating the Holiday seasons.

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Photo of rtepiak
4.4/5  rDev +10%
look: 4 | smell: 4 | taste: 4.5 | feel: 4 | overall: 5

the beer that is somewhere in between in the world of cognac and tawny port. goes down warm. nose of interesting malt characteristics... booze. apple pie, licorice and raisin.. fig, prune and lilies... candied pineapple. quite sweet and a wonderfully festive drink.

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Photo of organicbrewer
4.41/5  rDev +10.3%
look: 5 | smell: 4 | taste: 4.5 | feel: 4.5 | overall: 4.5

a-Full Ruby, Brilliantly clear. 2 finger eggshell head.

s-Plum. Vodka soaked cherries. Slight tingling from the alcohol.

t-Fruity caramel. Plum, cherry and raisin. I can't find any hops in this beer, which is fine. Really sweet but not over the top.

m-Thick! Big carbonation keeps this from getting out of hand. Some alcohol burn but pleasant

d-Could I have 2? NO! But is this tasty

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Photo of stumac
4.41/5  rDev +10.3%
look: 5 | smell: 4 | taste: 4.5 | feel: 4.5 | overall: 4.5

we begin our journey with a murky rust colored brew with a decent off white colored head. we start to smell the notes of alcohol, malts, more alcohol, more malts, and yeast. as the brew enters our feeding holes, we taste sweet malts and crisp hops. We have discovered a pure Belgium Noel! realizing how full bodied it was with low smoothe carbo, we begin to relax as the 12% worth of alcohol starts hitting our bloodstream. Sleep...sleep...

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Photo of righthereisay
4.41/5  rDev +10.3%
look: 5 | smell: 4 | taste: 4.5 | feel: 4.5 | overall: 4.5

11.2 ounce bottle poured into Corsendonk Christmas glass. Removed from the refrigerator 45 minutes ahead of the pour.

Very nice amber pour, with an off-white head that was purposely delivered. Very nice lacing that lasts a while.

Smells a little sweet, some caramel and toffee, and maybe fig. No alcohol smell (to me)

Tastes great. Not too sweet, taste of caramel, malt, no raisin like other Belgian beers. No alcohol at all (to me)

Medium body. A little thick.

Definitely a nice treat. You could drink more than 1, but you had better monitor your intake....

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Photo of Cyberkedi
4.41/5  rDev +10.3%
look: 5 | smell: 4 | taste: 4.5 | feel: 4.5 | overall: 4.5

It pours a dark reddish brown and is very bubbly with a nice thick head. Aroma is not strong but very malty with a hint of brown sugar or molasses - very appetizing. Flavor is rich and creamy, mainly malty with some spice undertones and a nice bite to it, and no bitterness. Smooth and yet edgy, this is a very enjoyable holiday ale.

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Photo of RoyalT
4.42/5  rDev +10.5%
look: 4 | smell: 4.5 | taste: 4.5 | feel: 4 | overall: 4.5

Appearance – Clear, brownish-orange carbonating body with a modest head. It settled well on top of the liquid though and showed good retention.

Smell – Big BSDA aroma. The malts, super-ripe fruits, and sugars abound in this hearty brew. I warmed this for an hour before opening and now my whole house smells like Belgian Strong Dark Ale. The wife’s not too happy, but I’m in heaven.

Taste – Outstanding! This ale is everything about a BSDA that I love. The malts are excellent. The peaches, apricots, plums, dates, figs, and other fruits are full yet not overdone. The alcohol flavor is complimentary instead of invasive.

The bubble gum comes out second along with lip-smacking sugars. This one runs the gamut of brown and raw sugar, powdered, and table (refined). Looking for hops? Not in this heavy hitter.

Mouthfeel – A small alcohol sting and a very smooth, thick, chewy body makes this one a standout. It’s full-bodied and feels terrific in between the cheeks.

Drinkability – At 12.0 ABV I wouldn’t suggest pouring a six-pack of these into a beer bong or anything like that, but if you enjoy the style you MUST find a way to try this ale.

Update – I revisited this fella on Christmas Day 2004. It’s just as I remembered it. The malts tasted a little more yeasty and it seemed a little fuller. This is a great Noël.

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Photo of MattyG85
4.42/5  rDev +10.5%
look: 4 | smell: 4.5 | taste: 4.5 | feel: 4 | overall: 4.5

Poured from a 8.48 oz. bottle into a Duvel tulip glass. Can't tell which year this was bottled, but it was purchased very recently.

Appearance: Pours a deep and hazy amber orange with a fair amount of sediment. Moderate bubbles and about one finger of off white head that quickly fades into a few thin patches. Leaves a decent amount of lacing.

Smell: Nicely spicy and fruity Belgian aroma. Belgian yeast with a fair amount of clove and pepper spices. Big toasted malt aroma with hints of caramel, toffee, oak, and biscuit. Burnt Belgian candied sugars. Hints of apple and subtle banana. Lots of undertones of dark fruits including raisin, fig, dark cherry, plum, and grapes. A fairly hot scent of booze. Nice complex aroma.

Taste: Like the aroma hints, a good Belgian taste of sweet dark malts, yeast, and fruits. Belgian yeast with some clove and pepper like spicing. Toasted malts with a good taste of bready biscuit, sweet caramel, toffee, toast, and a little oak. Candied Belgian sugars. Complex notes of fruits including apple, pear, banana, and a variety of dark fruits including raisin, dark grapes, figs, dark cherry, plum, and dates. Alcohol heat is noticeable but fairly tame.

Mouthfeel: Medium to full body with a moderate amount of carbonation. Creamy, juicy, and fairly smooth. Alcohol heat is present but still pretty smooth considering its 12%.

Overall: Another really good Belgian ale. Big and fruity while still maintaining some smoothness.

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Photo of IntriqKen
4.42/5  rDev +10.5%
look: 4 | smell: 4.5 | taste: 4.5 | feel: 4 | overall: 4.5

Ok...second review of this beer....9 months later and 9 months older.

Pours a medium dark tea amber with a half finger of white foam that melts very slowly to a top covering of sticky, lace producing white.

Aromas are light sugars, light brown sugar, lots of caramel, some fruits, and alcohol, but very subdued now.

Taste is sweet candied dark malts and lots of caramel with alcohol coming at the tail end. A bit of dark cherries and maybe some other dark fruits underlie everything. Strong but somehow balanced making for a very nice sipping desert brew.

Mouthfeel is moderately creamy and substantial enough not to be thin at all.

Aftertaste is dark candied fruits, caramels, and alcohol.

Aging this beer has done wonders for it. All of the roughness has mellowed away and lots of personality and versitily has begun to shine through. I'm sorry I only have one more bottle to try at a later date now. I'll be sure to store more from the 2007 batch when it becomes available.

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Photo of ProfessorHomer
4.42/5  rDev +10.5%
look: 4 | smell: 4.5 | taste: 4.5 | feel: 4 | overall: 4.5

Scaldis Noël - what can I say but "Wow!" What a HUGE seasonal. Had this on-tap at world-famous (but exceedingly odd) Mahar's bar in Albany.

Appearance: Deep reddish/brown in color with nice big white head. Nice lacing on glass.

Smell: Malty, you can smell the aroma the alcohol prominently, as well as raisins, figs, cherries, prunes and plums, even. Rummy too. Like liquid Christmas!

Taste: Yes, you can taste all those and the big alcohol presence to boot. Like being kissed by the Christmas beer goddess herself. A HUGE beer very balanced between malts, hops and alcohol. Sip slowly!

Mouthfeel: Big bodied with long, spicy/ sweet finish. Lightly carbonated.

Drinkability: A very dense, complicated BIG seasonal beer

A very long, slow drink. Outstanding, in fact! Would loved to have had a pipe with it, but no smoking in NY bars. I already look forward to redrinking this beer next Christmas!

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Photo of robbyc1
4.42/5  rDev +10.5%
look: 4 | smell: 4.5 | taste: 4.5 | feel: 4 | overall: 4.5

Not much head, but a nice apple cider look, hazy and nice chestnut brown.

Nose of alcohol and fruits, deep dark fruits like plums, malty, some Belgian yeast.

Stong up front taste of over-ripe apples, plums, abv is pretty well hidden, deep malt with not a sign of hops, but a bit sweet at the end. Very nice.

More fizzy than I thought it would be, good carbonation keeps the nice flavors alive.

Great after dinner drink, keep it for special occasions. Nice little 25cl bottle is all you need.

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Photo of jzeilinger
4.42/5  rDev +10.5%
look: 3.5 | smell: 4 | taste: 5 | feel: 4.5 | overall: 4

Pours a copper orange color, small amount of foam on top that wraps around the edge of the glass. The head doesn't stick to the side of the glass and quickly runs down the side as I swirl the glass. Not what I expected judging by the smell and alcohol volume. I made the mistake of pouring the "floaties" in this, I'll know better next time. Smells of cloves, definitely raisins, fruit, spice, & malty brown candy sugar. If this is even detectable or possible, the beer smells complex. The taste...ahhh...the taste! All I can say is, "Wow", pretty amazing. Detecting prunes, raisins, faint vanilla, a slight touch of orange (very slight), brown sugar. Medium body, creamy smooth finish and a warming down the throat from the boozy character of this high octane seasonal. I really wrestled with aging this bottle for a year but couldn't wait, I love the Scaldis brews and didn't have the willpower for the aging process. This is very drinkable and on an empty stomach, it's pretty much kicking my butt. I couldn't imagine a bottle bigger than the tiny 8.5 oz'r it came in. Nicely done, I think this just became my favorite Christmas brew.

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Photo of jdense
4.42/5  rDev +10.5%
look: 4 | smell: 4.5 | taste: 4.5 | feel: 4 | overall: 4.5

The Pretty Wee Bottle from John's Marketplace, poured into De Prouf Browerj glass Christmas Eve 2009.

Dark brown nearly opaque body. One finger white head, quick dissipation, minimal lacing. The nose is of big frickin' hops and cherries. Taste is dominated by fruity esters, especially sweet cherries with a bit of pears. Nicely carbonated mouthfeel. A definite sipper at this ABV, but very drinkable. Not as hop forward as the tap version at HAF, but undoubtedly one of the world's greatest holiday beers that should be tried at least once by all. Glad I have another bottle- Merry Christmas to me!

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Photo of lungboy
4.43/5  rDev +10.8%
look: 4.5 | smell: 4 | taste: 5 | feel: 4 | overall: 4

I got this 25cl bottle at Sam's in Chicago. Pours with authority-- not too much head, but enough to know you aren't going to be drinking a cough syrup in the next few minutes. It settled down with a thin head, just a bit more than a lacing if you catch my meaning.

The first scent is slightly more barley than yeast, and goes down with a sweetness that is offset by an astringent quality keeping it from finishing off with a sticky aftertaste. It is like candy that cleans up after itself. That last statement is a testament to the beer's ABV. After a few sips (and I mean sips) it becomes less astringent and more bread-like. However, the sweetness is always just a breath away.

I like it. Most certainly not a session brew.

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Photo of Maltmaiden
4.44/5  rDev +11%
look: 3.5 | smell: 4.5 | taste: 4.5 | feel: 4.5 | overall: 4.5

A: Dark amber. Little head. clear

S: Caramel malts up front. some alcohol. belgian candy. very light floral hops. Some metalic phenols.

T: WOW. Caramel malts and alcohol (warm and delicious) in the front. Dark fruit. Phenols and spice. Definitely great for a winter night!

M: Med-thick. Spicy and biting with the alcohol, especially at the end.

O: I was worried that this beer would have too much spice in it for me but it didn't. It was delicious! I would buy a ton of this stuff but it's pretty pricey.

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Photo of NuclearSoAndSo
4.44/5  rDev +11%
look: 3.5 | smell: 4.5 | taste: 4.5 | feel: 4.5 | overall: 4.5

Poured into a beer mug.

Appearance- Pours a deep brown with about a half finger light brown head.

Smell- Smells like cherries or plums; dark fruits, maybe some grape notes. Smells kind of like wine to be honest, and you can pick up on the alcohol.

Taste- Fruit flavors are upfront with a definite alcoholic bite. Heat kicks in for the aftertaste. Again, this reminds me of wine, and in a good way. Festive.

Mouthfeel- Medium carbonation and a very smooth mouthfeel. A beer to savor slowly.

Overall- I saw this at the liquor store (not sure how long it may have been aging there) and decided to splurge a bit for Christmas and buy a bottle. I'm very glad I did, because this was a treat. Pretty strong and relatively pricey, but worth it in my opinion. I split this beer with my good friend and might make it a Winter-time tradition.

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Photo of SigEp
4.45/5  rDev +11.3%
look: 4.5 | smell: 4.5 | taste: 4.5 | feel: 4 | overall: 4.5

This is one of my top 3 beers. It has the alcohol content of a strong wine. And yet, you could quaff 2-3 glasses of this easily in one sitting. Malty, complex, delicious. There are many delicious and well balanced flavors in there, caramel, stone fruit, and clean delicious maltiness. One of those beers that is so good you can't really put your finger on what makes it so great.

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Photo of TheHoppiest
4.45/5  rDev +11.3%
look: 4.5 | smell: 4.5 | taste: 4.5 | feel: 4 | overall: 4.5

Poured from a 250 ml bottle into a small chalice. Pours a rather clear ruddy umber. Starts with a fizzy tan head that quickly dissipates to a mere ring around the inside of the glass.

Smells of grapes, currants, prunes, and other dark fruit. Also has a candied fruit smell, like a fruitcake, with a fair helping of malt and yeast. There's almost a buttery smell as well, mixing with brown sugar. Complex and sweet smelling, I'm curious as to how it will taste.

Boozy and buttery at the start; robust fruit, with peaches, grapes, figs, and dried candied fruit galore. This is appropriately a Christmas beer; just the taste makes me feel sitting round the fire singing a carol! This beer had a nutty and spicy side as well, with nutmeg, cinnamon, and cloves tickling the palette. The more I sip, the more I seem to be able to pull out of this beer!

Mouthfeel is full, with a sweet alcohol tingle along the tongue.

Quite drinkable, and very sweet. Though it is a small bottle, I could see splitting this with someone next time, as it is an intense beer.

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Photo of John_M
4.45/5  rDev +11.3%
look: 4.5 | smell: 4.5 | taste: 5 | feel: 4 | overall: 3.5

It's beers like this that make this one of the best times of the year for lovers of big beers like myself. Have recently had this on tap at Max's and Mahaffey's.

The beer pours a light brown color, but with glints of amber and red. The beer has very good head retention and lacing and looks very impressive and enticing. The nose is sheer ectasy. It smells of sweet cherry cough drop, vanilla, Belgium spice and candy. The flavors on the palate replicate the nose. The beer is quite sweet, but with enough spice added in to keep it interesting. I just think of Christmas candy when I drink this beer. The beer is surprisingly light on it's feet for such a big beer, though it has a very warming effect, an indication of the 12% abv. The beer finishes well and, while a sipper, is surprisingly easy to drink.

An excellent beer. One of the more positive signs that winter is upon us.

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Photo of chrisdenny
4.47/5  rDev +11.8%
look: 4.5 | smell: 5 | taste: 4.5 | feel: 4 | overall: 4

Poured into a Chimay Tulip

A- Copper colored with hinting orange hue. Thin white head, dispensing out to a thin line around the glass.

S- First thing I thought was pear. Also smells a bit like apple as well. A bit of spice, but I can't quite put my finger on it.

T- Malty sweetness and candied sugar, followed by fresh apple/pear lingering on the palate. As mentioned above, the flavor does a good job of masking the ABV of this brew.

M- Well carbonated; feels very light and refreshing.

D- One of these will set you up nice; very warming if the temperature gets low.

I really like this beer, saw it on the shelf at Central Market and thought it looked intriguing. Then when I picked it up and saw it was a Belgian Holiday Ale, I had to get it...Glad I did, it was excellent.

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Photo of mmcave
4.47/5  rDev +11.8%
look: 4 | smell: 4.5 | taste: 4.5 | feel: 4.5 | overall: 4.5

8.48 oz bottle purchased at Sam’s chilled and poured into a tulip glass. The off white head rose and fell, lingers as a film centimeter off the surface. The body is a browned strawberry color with tiny peach highlights, its almost completely opaque. Smell is strong with wonderfully rich aromatics immediately accessible. I get tons of fruit esters strawberry, cherries, candied pears maybe the smallest touch of anise, a tiny hint of alcohol no really hop aroma, which is fine, because I’m in heaven. Taste as with the smell is wonderful, complex and immediately accessible. I get candied pears with rummed plums and candied apples, with a slow moving alcohol warmth. It would be so easy to drink this frivolously and feel its true strength, but I’m going my best. This is a great beer, I’ll pick up more if they are around, but I really wish the bottle was bigger. Until next year scaldis.

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Bush De Noël from Brasserie Dubuisson Frères sprl
4 out of 5 based on 851 ratings.
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