Abbaye Des Rocs [Brasserie Des Rocs Brune] | Brasserie de l'Abbaye des Rocs s.a.

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Abbaye Des Rocs [Brasserie Des Rocs Brune]Abbaye Des Rocs [Brasserie Des Rocs Brune]
507 Ratings
Abbaye Des Rocs [Brasserie Des Rocs Brune]Abbaye Des Rocs [Brasserie Des Rocs Brune]

Brewed by:
Brasserie de l'Abbaye des Rocs s.a.

Style: Belgian Strong Dark Ale

Alcohol by volume (ABV): 9.00%

Availability: Year-round

Notes / Commercial Description:
No notes at this time.

Added by BeerAdvocate on 07-13-2002

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Ratings: 507 |  Reviews: 322
Photo of brentk56
3.97/5  rDev -5.5%
look: 3.5 | smell: 4 | taste: 4 | feel: 4 | overall: 4

Appearance: Pours a murky garnet brown body with all kinds of suspended yeasties floating around (I had to run it through a sieve to break them up); the head is strong (and the bottle was a foamer) but doesn't last long; plenty of splashy lacing, however

Smell: Caramel, toffee, hazlenuts, balsa wood, raisins but not the bounteous aroma that others have noted

Taste: Nice and balanced, starts with a hazelnutty, cookie dough flavor that builds into a dark fruit melange with a woodie finish

Mouthfeel: A touch thin for the style, but well carbonated

Drinkability: Either I had a mishandled bottle or this one is going downhill since earlier reviewers hailed it with all kind of superlatives; a nice beer but not top notch

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Photo of BEERchitect
4.42/5  rDev +5.2%
look: 4 | smell: 4.5 | taste: 4.5 | feel: 4 | overall: 4.5

Can't help but to love this beer. Certainly the best of the Brassarie des Rocs offerings. Very mature and bold in all it's flavors, while retaining a perfect balance. The bottle really pissed me off. Upon poping the top, it's gushing made a mess of the counter top. I managed to pour a goblet and sat down to drink. Upon returning, the half-full bottle continued to cascade over the top and created, yet another mess. After that, good beer! Malty, prune-sy, raisons, woodsy, vineous, tart, spicy, and lightly barnyard-ey and leathery. Moderately full and rich with a less-thn-thick feel. Carbonation gives way to a smooth, tart finish. This one is deservingly of BA top 100 status.

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Photo of meathookjones
4.08/5  rDev -2.9%
look: 4.5 | smell: 4 | taste: 4 | feel: 4.5 | overall: 4

750ml bottle with a best by date of 2008. Appears a dark amber brown with a huge light tan head that drops and leaves clinging rings of lace. Sweet fruits with some candy sugars come on strong o min the aroma. Some light yeast and spice notes come out as well as it warmed. Taste starts with sweet caramel , some dark ripe fruits and more of the sugary sweetness. Nice bit of spice cuts through the sweetness towards the middle. Finishes up with more sweetness and some yeasty notes. Really thick and creamy body. Pretty easy drinking stuff but it got a bit to overly sweet for me towards the end.

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Photo of texashammer
3.2/5  rDev -23.8%
look: 3.5 | smell: 3.5 | taste: 3 | feel: 3.5 | overall: 3

deep and dark in color with some red showing. very nice head. smells boozy! dark flavor/smells like raisins, chocolate, toffee, plum. too much booze in the palate. rich and pruney flavors. creamy and full bodied. slightly too much alcoholic flavor for me; I wish it were a little more graceful.

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Photo of Fugazme
4.5/5  rDev +7.1%
look: 4.5 | smell: 4.5 | taste: 4.5 | feel: 4.5 | overall: 4.5

Notes from Christmas Dinner... Enjoyed with Roast Goose!

Golden brown... hazy/cloudy... very nice 1/2" white head... sticks like crazy to the glass.

Musty/earthy on the first whiff... dried fruits/citrus/toffee/alcohol
Quite complex nose.

Smooth palate... hints of vanilla and butterscotch flavor... malty and yeasty.

Lot's of floaties on the final pours.

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Photo of KarlHungus
4.55/5  rDev +8.3%
look: 5 | smell: 5 | taste: 4.5 | feel: 3.5 | overall: 4.5

This brew pours a cloudy brown color with amber hues around the edges. The head is billowy, rocky and off white in color. The aroma is massive. Dark fruits, butter, more dark fruits, caramel, and then some spices. The taste is of dark fruits and butter, cut with spices and alcohol. The mouthfeel is medium bodied with a lot of carbonation, perhaps a little too much as it masks the flavor a bit. Overall, this is a might fine brew. Very enjoyable.

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Photo of danielharper
4.57/5  rDev +8.8%
look: 4.5 | smell: 5 | taste: 4.5 | feel: 5 | overall: 4

Purchased from Strong Brothers Liquor, Fayetteville, TN.

(Consumed and notes taken on 11/24/05. Verbatim notes below.)

"Brown color, a full luxurious head. Yeasties all through glass. Aroma of yeast, sweet fruit, some tart-like green apples, no hops. No alcohol present in nose. Taste of fruit, strong Belgian funky flavor, slight nutty aftertaste. Dry astringent flavor. Mouthfeel thick and luxurious, really well-coating the palate and leaving nice flavor in the back of throat. Very drinkable, but this is a "sipper", not a "gulper"."

This was my Thanksgiving beer, and despite the effort that the fiancee and I took to make a wonderful meal on that day, this brew was the highlight of the evening for me. A Belgian beer to live for, I intended to drink only about half of this with dinner, saving the rest for the next day, but ended up consuming the whole bottle.

The only caveat I had about this beer was the extreme amounts of yeast left in the bottle -- entire chunks of the material were floating around in my glass, especially towards the bottom of the bottle. I drank it and enjoyed it, despite a psychosomatic response that made me not want to swallow the solid portions of the beer, but more finnicky drinkers might find the level of sediment involved beyond their palate's enjoyment level.

I'll probably review this beer again (I've got another bottle in my closet) and I'll do a more detailed review at that point. But this is a truly amazing beer, one that I enjoyed an awful lot.

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Photo of goodbyeohio
4.42/5  rDev +5.2%
look: 3.5 | smell: 4 | taste: 5 | feel: 3.5 | overall: 4.5


pours a murky, swampy orangish brown with trademark AdR floaties barely visible through the cloudy interior. looks like raw honey. silky head reduces and sits with belgian majesty. lacing is surprisingly lackluster.

big, bright vibrant candied fruit smell. sweet malts in a purely traditional belgian fashion. hops balance with a delicate hint of springtime in an otherwise wintery fruitcake of a beer. tastes appley, follows through with creamy candi sugar mix characterized by pureed apricot essence and honeysuckle. absolutely sublime and full of larger-than-life dessert power. alcohol is almost impossible to spot for 9%. carbonation is a bit too forceful and mouthfeel could benefit from a bit more mellowing. aftertaste bears the hop botanical and scratchy yeast elements. somewhat balanced, but sinfully trappist-like and predominantly sweet (like most des rocs beers).

if you like the triple, you'll like this.

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Photo of Derek
4.79/5  rDev +14%
look: 4 | smell: 5 | taste: 5 | feel: 4.5 | overall: 4.5

"Best Before End 2006", whatever that means?

A: Coppery brown, fairly opaque. Not a lot of off-white head, but it's fairly well retained, and leaves some lace. Lots of yeast sediment in the bottle (even for a Belgian). Careful decanting, mine was a little mirky.

S: Raisins and prunes are VERY strong, with a little spicy fruit-bread and sweet caramel maltyness. Very strong nose, very Belgian aroma. Exceptional.

T: Raisins and prunes with a tannic, wine-like flavour. VERY Belgian. No hop flavour, a little bitterness comes in at the finish.. Some dark, slightly spicy, fruit bread-like flavour. It has a really nice sweet, slighty tart and slightly alcoholic (more-so with temperature) balance. Very well rounded, but with plenty of depth. Truly exceptional.

M: Moderate body is very well attenuated for an all-malt brew, but still has a bit of a syrupy feel. It's highly carbonated.

D: Very drinkable, expecially considering the strength.

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Photo of mmmbeer
4.29/5  rDev +2.1%
look: 3.5 | smell: 4.5 | taste: 4.5 | feel: 4 | overall: 4

Big 750 mL bottle with foil and a cap - best before 2007. The bottle overflowed with foam when I opened it, causing me to frantically pour it into the glass. The beer is a dark cherry/brown with a whole lot of yeast floating around and a 1 finger brown head that leaves some lacing. The aroma consists of caramel, molasses, sweetness, fruits (plum? apple?), raisins, green hops?, carob?, and yeast. It has a medium to thick body with winey, fruity malts, mild hops, yeast, a medium bitterness, and some suggestions of the aroma. This glass went quickly and I bet I could have drunk the whole bottle myself. Pretty good stuff - just wish it looked better and didn't explode upon opening.

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Photo of wcudwight
3.62/5  rDev -13.8%
look: 3.5 | smell: 4 | taste: 4 | feel: 2.5 | overall: 3

Toughest bottle I've opened yet. Massive metal cap that was non-compliant with my bottle opener. And a stubborn cork that wouldn't come out. After tending to my bottle opening injuries, I sat down to enjoy my beer on Christmas eve.
Pours a cloudy golden amber with a lot of yeast floating around. Great head that retains for quite some time. I get caramel, butterscotch, and nuts in the nose. Real bready and grainy tasting. Sweet and just enough of the alcohol. Nice dry aftertaste.
To carbonated and bubbly in the mouth. It's drinkable, but I think it would be hard to finish of the bottle with out a partner.

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Photo of Absumaster
3.65/5  rDev -13.1%
look: 4 | smell: 4 | taste: 3.5 | feel: 3.5 | overall: 3.5

Smell: caramel, dark fruit, dark malts, sweet.
Taste: mild alcohol, candy sugar and caramel, some undertones of malt bitter. Full body.
When the brew warms, more flavor comes out and taste becomes more complex. Very pleasant yeast character, which looks a little like the Westmalle strain.
An excellent tasting beer, very much suited for Christmas.

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Photo of waldowin
4.31/5  rDev +2.6%
look: 5 | smell: 4 | taste: 4.5 | feel: 4.5 | overall: 4

Poured from a 750mL champagne-style bottle, with a...cap? No cork, massive metal cap. Threw me for a bit, I almost didn't fit the bottle-opener around it. Opened with a definitive *snap*, and foam immediately began fighting its way out of the bottle. A very careful pour left a glass 1/3 beer and 2/3 *thick* foam. This stuff is the consistency of meringue topping, and lasts for ages with massive lacing. Beer itself is a murky ruby, fading to brown at the center.

Smells of dark malts, alcohol, and some hot spices.

Tastes heavily of raisins and walnuts. A slightly dry edge to it, with a sweet finish. Not terribly complex, but very good.

Mouthfeel is foamy, big, and carbonated. The carbonation cuts the mouthfeel nicely, leaving almost a champagne-like finish. A dry sweetness is left on your throat, and a roasty raisiny finish on your tongue.

This stuff is very rich, and fairly high in ABV, but I'm still making a go at the 750mL bottle by myself. Hopefully I'll be conscious tomorrow.

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Photo of DrJay
4.65/5  rDev +10.7%
look: 5 | smell: 5 | taste: 4.5 | feel: 4.5 | overall: 4.5

Murky toffee with reddish highlights. Tan head composed of very fine bubbles that produced thick lace and stuck around til the end. Plum aroma with an incredibly balanced combination of toasty malts, dark grain and a hint of alcohol. Plum/raisin flavour with a light sourness and citric character. Smooth, mild finish with some additional sweetness and a bit of spice. Fine carbonation, mild texture with just a hint of slickness. Dry finish. A superb beer, I'll definitely be having this one again.

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Photo of Dogbrick
4.5/5  rDev +7.1%
look: 4.5 | smell: 4.5 | taste: 4.5 | feel: 4.5 | overall: 4.5

Acquired via trade (available locally though). Dark chestnut color with a thick beige head that lasts a long time, and sheets of lacing. Toasty aroma of malt and spice with some cherry. Rich body and very drinkable with sweet sugary malt flavors, as well as caramel, dried fruit and a bit of yeast. The finish is very sweet and lingering, yet has a nice hops element. The alcohol level complements the beer perfectly too. Thoroughly enjoyable brew.

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Photo of ppoitras
4.17/5  rDev -0.7%
look: 4 | smell: 4.5 | taste: 4.5 | feel: 3.5 | overall: 3.5

750ml bottle purchased as a single somewhere in NoVA, either WF/Vienna, WF/Annadale, Norm's, or Rick's. Black foil, and huge amount of floaties settled near the bottom, about an inch's worth. Best before end of 2007.

Poured into a Rapscallion glass, formed a 1 1/2" tan head above the brown brew, which is filled with large floaties, even after a careful pour. Head snow-cones above the edges of the glass, due to vigorous and seemingly unending carbonation eminating from the bottom of the glass. Once the head finally begins to recede, lacing consists of heavy foam completely coating the sides. Aroma is sweet malts, coupled with some fruitiness. Taste follows along the same lines. Mouthfeel is extra creamy, but I just don't liek the feel of those big floaties scraping across my lips. Drinkability is nice as well, except for the heavy sediment. Guess it's just something I either need to get over from Brasserie des Rocs, or drink something else.

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Photo of Px2GrafX
4.57/5  rDev +8.8%
look: 4.5 | smell: 5 | taste: 4.5 | feel: 4 | overall: 4.5

presentation: 33cl bottle with a full color label. there is a gold triptych shape that frames a stone walled and columned hallway. "abbaye des rocs" is printed diagonally across the shape. there is a shield top middle of the triptych and also on the neck label. there is some belgian text. 9% abv displayed. "best before end 2006". there are lot numbers across the right side of the label, but no numbers are notched. "natural beer with yeast and without additives-pure malt and hop-naturally contains yeast particles".

appearance: extremely carbonated as pouring gently provides almost a 3 inch head in a tulip glass. nice dark brown color with iced tea-like highlights. head is huge with an off-white color and very much like meraingue. excellent retention and lacing.

smell: smells like sweet caramelized sugar. lightly spicy ginger and something else that is close to corriander, but not. there is some fruit maybe cherries or cranberries and definitely some apricots and raisins.

taste: huge malt character with a touch of alcohol. raisins, apricots and brown sugar. there is an orange flavor that i couldn't detect until i read it in another review. very nice. much like the flavors of a momosa with the alcohol blended in. rich bready yeasty flavors in the finish.

mouthfeel: nice lightly resiny, but smooth medium body. carbonation appeared to be heavily released during the pour because i was expecting more of a champagne-like feel. not quite, but good carbonation anyways. swallows quite smoothly.

drinkability: this is one tasty brew where the 9% is hidden quite well. you can taste the alcohol, but it doesn't hinder at all. this makes for a nice sipper, but goes down easily.

overall: this is just excellent. tons of flavor and the aromas are amazing. i have more in the closet for later, but i honestly don't see how this is gonna get much better. we will see. two emphatic thumbs.

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Photo of Gavage
3.98/5  rDev -5.2%
look: 4 | smell: 3.5 | taste: 4 | feel: 4 | overall: 4.5

Cloudy brown in color with a 2" head. Carbonation levels were a bit stronger than expected. Some lacing develops. The aroma is of caramel and yeast. The flavor consist of caramel, yeast, mild bitterness, and prunes. A hint of nuts and milk chocolate was barely there, but noticeable.

The mouthfeel was very crisp at the start and finish, and also finished slightly dry. Nice drinkability, as the caramel lingers softly on the tongue after swallowing. Overall this is a nice brew.

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Photo of mntlover
4.08/5  rDev -2.9%
look: 2 | smell: 4 | taste: 4.5 | feel: 4 | overall: 4

Pop the top smells nice get glass to pour oopps foaming over delayed reaction no big deal pour 10 oz or so into my glass and take bottle into living room sit it down and enjoying my beer after a couple of minutes foam again rising out of the bottle? Never had a bottle foam over after pouring a glass full before.

Pours a hazy dark red/amber color with a big creamy light tan head that falls slowly and leaves some lace behind. Whats all this stuff floating in my beer? Looks like egg drop soup floaters. Usually don't mind yeast sediment in my beer but this stuff looks nasty, good it doesn't taste that way.

Aroma is nice sweet molassis dipped fruit grapes, plums sugary caramel loads of fruit esters very nice.

Taste is sweet malty fruit dipped in sugary mollassis/caramel big on flavor nice smoothly carbonated not excess as the bottle promised to be like many Belgian Browns can be. Finish is nice lingering sugary fruit mingled with spice and a lingering light hop bitterness.

Mouthfeel is good medium full, nice carbonation and luckly you can't feel the egg drop floaters as they go down.

Drinkability is good nice wonderful flavor only don't look at your beer and all will be fine.

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Photo of NJbeerman
4.65/5  rDev +10.7%
look: 4.5 | smell: 4.5 | taste: 5 | feel: 4 | overall: 4.5

This is my first time in maybe 5 years grabbing this one - I will be back for more.

Appearance - fantastic. I am serving it in a snifter. It is a nice deep amber brown color with a beautiful creamy head. The head disappated pretty quick but I am serving it very cold - did not feel like waiting.

Smell - a surprisingly yeasty yet carmelized malt smell - very nice. I am expecting a nice subtle sweetness.

Taste - DAMN - this is a good beer. The Carmel stays in the flavor and there is a little bit of sweetness but it pairs very well with the alcohol warming effect. There is a slight bite but I expect that is mostly the alcohol - not a bad thing at all in fact it pairs very well for a great taste and feel.

Mouthfeel - a little bit sharper then I would like but as I said before it pairs well. I think giving this another year or two and it would be perfect.

Drinkability - not a problem - this one goes down a bit too smooth for such a high octane beer.

A very nice beer for just a drink or two but also a great food beer - I will be pairing it with a sausage meat sauce and pasta.


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Photo of Quaffer
4.29/5  rDev +2.1%
look: 3.5 | smell: 4.5 | taste: 4.5 | feel: 4 | overall: 4

25.4 oz. bottle. Not available here in Wichita. Picked this one up at Royal Liquor in KC,MO.

Appearance: Ah, the o'l sneak attack. I popped the top on this beer and momentarily turned my back on it to put the bottle opener down on the counter behind me. When I turned back around, the foam had already started to spread out on the counter. After being moved to the sink, the bottle continued to spew forth the goods. I could see a tremendous amount of bubbles rising from the bottom. I got tired of waiting and went ahead and poured myself a glass. The beer was a deep amber-brown color with a beige head. It was very hazy and had tons of yeast chunks floating around in it. They never settled due to the amount of bubbles that were present. The head diminished slowly into a thin cap that remained for the entire glass. Oddly enough, there was hardly any lacing.

Smell: Malty sweet with lots of raisins and dates, though it didn't come across as too sweet. Some sour fruits, yeast, and light oak saw to that. The yeast was definitely present, but it wasn't overpowering and complimented the other aromas very well. There was also sourdough, crackers, light toffee, and apples thrown in. Very nice.

Mouthfeel: Medium-bodied, smooth, and soft.

Taste: Sweet malt, raisins, and candied fruits were present upfront. Then in the middle, the fruit took on a tart characteristic. The yeast came across as both sour and musty in the middle. The finish was woody and lightly bitter, with some sweet hints of caramel and toffee rising up to counter. The alcohol was hidden completely, except for a few dull hints late in the aftertaste. All around classic Belgian flavor.

This was a delicious beer with all the yeast mixed in, but I would have loved to have tried a "clean" glass first for comparison. Alas, the eruption didn't allow that. I will be purchasing this one again. Too bad that involves a trip to KC.

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Photo of Viggo
4.2/5  rDev 0%
look: 4.5 | smell: 4.5 | taste: 4 | feel: 4.5 | overall: 4

Pours a very cloudy dark brown with nice orange highlights. Chock full of chunks, nice off white head forms, settles down then stays the whole glass, nice lacing.Smell is very perfumy and hoppy, jasmine and sweet fruit, some alcohol as it warms. Taste is very fruity, strawberries and raspberries, hoppy spicy middle, some alcohol at the end and a dry bitter finish. Mouthfeel is medium, very dry, smooth and medium carbonation, slight burn near the end, very warming.

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Photo of Paddez
4.77/5  rDev +13.6%
look: 4.5 | smell: 5 | taste: 5 | feel: 5 | overall: 4

Appearance: Came in a 33cl bottle with a slightly tacky label. Upon opening; foam started to rise twoards the top of the bottle. Poured a cloudy brown-amberish brew with a big head that only stayed for a short while and then started to diminish. Lots of sediment at the bottom. It proved almost impossible to keep it all in the bottle. Doesn't matter, it can only make the appearance more intresting.

Smell: Oh boy. Flowers, citrus fruits, prunes, nuts and tea. Deliciously rich and complex. Very floral for such a dark beer.

Taste: Prunes, roasted malts, yeast, honey, and slightly dry walnuts near the end. Magnificent!

Mouthfeel & Drinkability: The brew is so creamy it seems to coat your tongue. The medium carbonation fits the smooth characteristics very well. The high ABV is deceptivly well-hidden, wich adds to the drinkability. I could've easily quaffed another but this stuff is so complex that one is enough.

Conlusion: A most unique brew. Maybe not to everyone's liking but in my humble opinion one of Belgium's greatest.

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Photo of Shultzerdugen
4.17/5  rDev -0.7%
look: 3.5 | smell: 4 | taste: 4.5 | feel: 4 | overall: 4

75 cl bottle.

A murky lightish brown in color with red tints and large flakes of swirling yeast sediment. Topped with a big tan head made of tight clinging bubbles.

Bread and cookie dough in the nose, followed by light and tropical fruits and a sharp yeast note.

Medium body with moderate carbonation and a slight grainy coating. Malt is sweet and flavorful. Touches of brown sugar, ripe green apple, toast, cookies, and yeast. Alcohol is well hidden. Nice to share with a others, but any more and it would have been cloying.

Worth another look, as I wasn't quite as blown away as plenty of other reviewers, though I was intrigued. It did get me anxious to try the Brasserie de Rocs Tripel Imperiale and Grand Cru I have.

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Photo of mdagnew
4.24/5  rDev +1%
look: 4 | smell: 5 | taste: 4 | feel: 4 | overall: 4

300ml bottle bought from

Poured a dark brown colour... Exploded out of the top of the bottle - i opened the bottle, turned round to put the cap in the bin and when i turned round to the bottle again it was all over the kitchen work top !!! Head was a creamy tan colour and was big and foamy.... nice thick layer stays until near the end....

This beer has an amazing aroma - possibly one of the nicest smelling beers (certianly that i have experienced). Very sweet smell - toffee and caramel. Malty, some dark fruits, vanilla and brown sugar....

Taste – Sweet and malty, hints of caramel, liquorice and plums...

Feel - Quite sharp with a smooth afterfeel. Light carbonation...

Overall - A exceptional beer - one of my favourites... highly recommended...

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Abbaye Des Rocs [Brasserie Des Rocs Brune] from Brasserie de l'Abbaye des Rocs s.a.
Beer rating: 4.2 out of 5 with 507 ratings