Fantôme De Noel
Brasserie Fantôme

Fantôme De NoelFantôme De Noel
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Farmhouse Ale - Saison
Ranked #508
Ranked #8,939
3.97 | pDev: 13.35%
Brasserie Fantôme
Very Good
Fantôme De NoelFantôme De Noel
Notes: This ever-evolving offering is said to be spiced with honey, caramel, black pepper, coriander and (per usual with Fantôme) a number of other special secret ingredients. A rich, dark-flavored beer with lots of deep-roasted chocolate malt, but still fairly dry, with a hint of sourness at the core. It is very spicy, with some winter spruce flavor in the bargain. The wild yeast sourness also adds to its welcoming character.
Reviews: 363 | Ratings: 646 | Log in to view all ratings and sort
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beertunes from Kiribati

3.74/5  rDev -5.8%
look: 3.75 | smell: 3.5 | taste: 3.75 | feel: 3.75 | overall: 4

Capped and corked 750, (of indeterminate vintage, but I've had it several years at a minimum) poured into 14oz teku. Poured a nice ruby-ish brown color with a half-inch of tan head that low-moderate retention and no lacing.

Nice, rich malt aromas, with a hint of chocolate in the background, and some nice Belgian yeast spice notes.

Pretty similar on the tongue, with a light touch of alcohol heat at the finish.

The body was a touch thinner than I would have liked , but was smooth and even, with a medium-sweet finish that dried out after a moment.

Drinkability was excellent, no issues knocking off the bottle.

Overall, a very nice brew. A must try.

Mar 09, 2020
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cratez from Canada

3.89/5  rDev -2%
look: 3.5 | smell: 4.5 | taste: 3.75 | feel: 4 | overall: 3.5

Rating from notes. Purchased at Beer:30 - San Marco in Jacksonville, FL. Consumed April 2014. "Enticing flavours and aromas, but a little more restrained than I expected. Still fun to try, though."

Jan 26, 2020
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doktorhops from Australia

4.48/5  rDev +12.8%
look: 4.5 | smell: 4 | taste: 4.5 | feel: 4.5 | overall: 5

Season’s Greetings from those lovely chaps at Fantôme! Well, yes you’re right - it’s not Christmas, but for the first time in what feels like ages it’s starting to cool down in Queensland, perfect time to crack open a De Noel and feast on the (no doubt) delicious goo inside. I’ve only tried one Fantôme thus far, Pissenlit, which was rather excellent and enough to convince me that Dany Prignon and team have a special energy happening in Belgium, which for a country that brews the best beer in the world they still like to do things by the book (only difference being their book is massive and unique to the rest of the world). Another thing - this beer contains honey, and I do love the rare beers out there that utilise this valuable ingredient.

Poured from a 750ml corked and crown capped bottle into a Duvel tulip.

A: Aye she looks great: deep red/brown burnt umber body, possibly cloudy but hard to tell, with a nice bold Ecru head that thins out to a lace ring. Loving this colour - it’s like a murky forest waiting to be explored. 9/10.

S: Getting hints of dark fruits (plum, fig and sweet cherry) mixing with a woody and tart black cherry note, there’s a real forest floor vibe as well. Hints of honey and clove in the background... bit of cardamom pods too. This definitely strikes me, from the aroma at least, of a Saison that will peak when it’s warmer and more flavours/aromas come out to play. 8/10.

T: Nice! Flavour is somewhere between a Saison and a spiced Mead, with notes of: Dark fruits, woody (one might even say spruce - at least the label says it) tones, honey, clove, cardamom, pepper, and a touch of tart black cherry. Thankfully the tart cherry is more of a background attraction than the main star - as you well know my enjoyment of Rodenbach Caractère Rouge was soured [pun intended] by the amount of sourness in that brew. Finish adds a light herbal bitterness. As a winter warmer it fails in that the 10% ABV is very well hidden... or it succeeds depending on your views, me I like a winter warmer to give me a slight kick at the end if only to slow me down - Fantôme De Noel has little of that “kick”. 9/10.

M: Pretty luscious with a mid to heavy bodied and a creamy Weizen-esque carbonation, great stuff. 9/10.

D: All round another winner for Fantôme, who are quick becoming a favourite of mine. Their beers are deceptively simple and complex at the same time, Dany Prignon is a master of brewing. Gobias some more! 10/10.

Food match: If it ain’t turkey it ain’t worth eating with cranberry sauce.

May 10, 2018
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TX-Badger from Texas

4.25/5  rDev +7.1%
look: 4.25 | smell: 4.25 | taste: 4.25 | feel: 4.25 | overall: 4.25

Bottle from 2014. This has aged well. Pours a lightly hazed dark brownish color with tan colored head. Christmas spices, nutmeg, cinnamon, with some dark fruits, fig, plum, and a light earthiness on the nose; follows onto the palate. Medium bodied. Finishes with a nice dark fruit and spice finish, the aclohol is now very well hidden, does not drink like a 10% beer.

May 21, 2017
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JayQue from Virginia

3.99/5  rDev +0.5%
look: 3.75 | smell: 4 | taste: 4 | feel: 4 | overall: 4

Interesting beer. A lot of Saison qualities but a bunch of other sensations as well. Poured from a 750 ml corked and capped bottle into a Timmerman stemmed half-pint glass. Pours a light amber/dark orange color with a bubbly light tan head. Head retention is average, leaving a filmy cover on the top of the glass. Little to no lacing. Aroma and taste include wild yeast funk, some candi sugar and spices and some sweet malt. A Saison with extras, a Christmas spiced beer with yeasty funk. There is a bit of everything here and it works pretty well. Mouthfeel is tart and both dry and sweet, with minimal alcohol presence. The spicing is interesting. A different and good holiday beer!!!!

Mar 07, 2017
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Beginner2 from Illinois

4.26/5  rDev +7.3%
look: 3.75 | smell: 4 | taste: 4.5 | feel: 4.25 | overall: 4.25

An interesting take on the holiday ale. The second time through, I get more how this is a saison... only with holiday spices.
Murky blond Looks, but it has all these dark fruit flavors creating a mystery. Smells are mostly malt, but the spices are there... and I bet they are different each year on. I Taste less sour than other reviewers. And the dry finish pleases, too.
This second tasting is a swing of 14%. To be sure, should I have this again ? It just might enter my top 5 holiday favorites.

Dec 03, 2016
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avalon07 from South Carolina

3.79/5  rDev -4.5%
look: 4 | smell: 3.75 | taste: 3.75 | feel: 4 | overall: 3.75

L: Poured from a bottle to a tulip glass. Had a dark orange color and a thick texture. There was an inch of foamy head that lasted an average amount of time. No real lacing to speak of.

S: A decent aroma of different types of fruit, malt, a funky quality, and yeast.

T: Tasted of a little bit of Belgian yeast, a lot of malt, an almost bready quality, orange, lemon and other citrus fruits, light spices (a hint of pepper), and the funky quality. Not the typical saison flavor, and that's not a bad thing. If there's a problem with the flavor it's that the fruit isn't quite as powerful as it should be. Likable, though.

F: A good amount of carbonation with a smooth finish. Medium-bodied.

O: A solidly made, but not spectacular saison. Worth a look.

Nov 02, 2016
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Bluecrow from New York

4.51/5  rDev +13.6%
look: 4.25 | smell: 4.5 | taste: 4.75 | feel: 4.25 | overall: 4.25

I've enjoyed a couple of these, but most recently: initial pour is clear orange, spice, sugar and a funky tartness evident in aroma. Flavor is some lemon, Belgian candi and subtle spice and Bretty too. The carbonation is very fine and the finish is dry. There are too many flavors for my limited palate/vocabulary, but this is a favorite, even if each bottle is a bit different.

May 06, 2016
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josanguapo from Spain

2.68/5  rDev -32.5%
look: 2 | smell: 1.5 | taste: 3 | feel: 4 | overall: 3

From cervezasespeciales. In Teku glass. Watching Sons of Anarchy 1x04. Smooth, a bit acidic. Bad smell. Better in taste. I could finish it without much trouble, but Im not sure if I like it. Not much wintery. Not worth its high price

Dec 19, 2015
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JackRWatkins from Alabama

4.32/5  rDev +8.8%
look: 4.75 | smell: 4.5 | taste: 4.25 | feel: 4.5 | overall: 4

from the bottle into a St. Bernardus glass

A: pours a beautiful deep orange with a very creamy one finger head, nice lacing
S: very perplexing, takes some time to yield the specifics of the nose, at first you get spicy notes and small amounts of an oddly specific fruit that you cant quite put your finger on, it later reveals itself to be peach, deep and tart yet sweet, rich, also some subtle touches of pepper
T: sharp, citrusy and almost (but not quite) bracingly tart, oddly enough the tartness seems to be derived from the spices and maybe a touch of (but only a touch) salt, resulting in an astringent and somewhat briny tartness, feels like an unsweetened orange and lemon juice fruit cocktail, also the tartness feels as though it might be derive from some wheat in the grain bill
M: rich and creamy but not sticky, it the mouthfeel that steers this beer away from a summertime feel and gives it a wintry character
O: exceptionally interesting, a welcome change from the darker christmas beers (though I love them as well), this is both complex and accessible simultaneously. This was my first Fantôme beer and I cannot wait to try more of them. also this beer hides its alcohol content very well so beware. truly a lovey christmas seasonal beer

Dec 05, 2015
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Brutaltruth from Ohio

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

Ah me---a birthday brew. Poured from the 750 ml bottle in a snifter this fine Belgian pours a luminous brownish orange with a moderate head of white foam that dissipates quickly leaving a thin ring and little lacing. Nose of orange zest, sweet candy sugars, yeasty funk, and some spicy seasoning I can not put my finger on. Flavors are a true wow factor with warming orange and candy sugars blending with a spicy spruce and light chocolate flavor. Earthy robust yeast comes in on the middle to back with an herbal dose of a light mace and coriander like flavor. Very unique and highly quaffable, this ale features a smooth mouth feel that is warmed by substantial alcohol and a lightly brett sour note that finishes ever so lightly dry. Complex.
Let this one warm and be amazed.


Oct 08, 2015
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zonker17 from Texas

4.08/5  rDev +2.8%
look: 4 | smell: 4 | taste: 4.25 | feel: 3.75 | overall: 4

Clear copper brown draft pour, 2 finger tan head to start, minor lacing. Light nose carries Belgian yeast note and light amount of dried fruit. Taste more complex bringing the dried fruit, alcohol, medicinal, some toffee, pepper. Somewhat lighter than expected feel and average carbonation.

Jun 29, 2015
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ClePaul from Ohio

4.03/5  rDev +1.5%
look: 4 | smell: 4 | taste: 4.25 | feel: 3.75 | overall: 3.75

Look 7/10
Smell 17/20
Taste 36/40
Feel 17/10
Drinkability 17/20

Overall 84/100

Feb 13, 2015
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pat61 from Minnesota

4.6/5  rDev +15.9%
look: 4.5 | smell: 4.5 | taste: 4.75 | feel: 4.5 | overall: 4.5

Fantôme de Noel pours a brilliant deep garnet with a ½” bone white finely bubbled foam cap. Yeasty aromas with a blend of fresh and overripe fruit waft up from the glass with hints of spice, dark sugars and alcohol. A spicy palate combines chocolate, fruit, spice, slightly over ripe fruit, toffee, with a slight alcohol sweetness. The Brettanomyces character is just coming on board with most impact on the texture producing a very fine, soft carbonation. The sweetness from the malt nicely balances the wild yeast tastes. It is effervescent, medium bodied, and has very smooth alcohol.

Jan 31, 2015
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mick303 from Canada

4.01/5  rDev +1%
look: 3.75 | smell: 4 | taste: 4 | feel: 3.75 | overall: 4.25

750 ml bottle into a tulip, slightly chilled. Colour initially is quite a dark ruddy colour. As the plentiful sediment starts to pour it becomes a muddy brown. Fairly nice lacing and retention.

S - orange zest and spruce, warming gingersnap cookies, a bouquet of holiday spices, baking spice and a herbal quality, rosemary, can almost smell the mistletoe. As it becomes engaged a really interesting complexity emerges here. Warming and festive with a fruity earthy yeast presence.

T - initial spices of cinnamon, spruce herbal notes, slick feel with a warming alcohol, earthy and dunnage, old luggage and wool blankets, mixed with a spicy winter toddy with a really sprucy influence. Cooked orange and plums, some tart berry sourness, mixed with some caramel malt sweetness, some spicy astringency to balance, leading to a herbal spicy finish, which is matched only by the warmth of the alcohol. Again a big baking spice and roasty character, takes you to a small belgian kitchen in the middle of winter, where some very potent cooking is going on...

M - big and thick, a bit slick and oily with the spruce feel and alcohol spice presence. The carbonation is potentially on the low side. Balance makes it drinkable though, but not an easy saison to drink quickly.

Overall this is a serious cacophony of holiday and yeast flavour. A beast of a beer that really bring a full compliment of flavour to play. The more time you spend with this the more flavours emerge and I really enjoyed this, quite an experience but this doesn't match the other Fantome offerings. More of the sourness emerges as it warms.

Dec 28, 2014
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Beer-A-Lot from Virginia

4.09/5  rDev +3%
look: 3.75 | smell: 4 | taste: 4.25 | feel: 4 | overall: 4

Very nice, unique beer. Alcohol is very well hidden. Almost a sour component to taste. But a dryness too. Soft, delicate, smooth. Very fun to drink. Easy to go down.

Dec 18, 2014
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thegerm87 from Massachusetts

3.3/5  rDev -16.9%
look: 3 | smell: 3.5 | taste: 3.25 | feel: 3.25 | overall: 3.25

Apparently my ratings are considered too different than the normal distribution and I need to write a full review. I'd rather not though so this will have to do.

Dec 18, 2014
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clayrock81 from Florida

4/5  rDev +0.8%

Poured a light brownish body with one finger offwhite head and contains a piney, spruce like aroma with what seems to be hints of dark fruits but I guess is the chocolate along with touches of yeast and sourness.
Beer has a bit of funk and boozy medicinalness that can be found in belgian saisons and the yeast gives it a smooth, bready feel.
A spicy, piney hop bitterness which leads to crisp finish is balanced with slightly sour dark fruit or cherry notes (can't really pick out one flavor) and with hints of chocolate/sugary sweetness.
Easy finisher as ABV is hidden and an interesting beer and one that only a brewery like Fantome would pull off (OK, maybe a couple of others).

Dec 16, 2014
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rand from California

3.83/5  rDev -3.5%
look: 4 | smell: 3.5 | taste: 4 | feel: 4 | overall: 3.75

From 750 mL bottle to oversized wine glass

Reviewed from notes, 12/21/2010

A: Pours a hazy caramel-orange with lots of carbonation. Little dots of lacing, frothy 1-inch head

S: Some caramelly bready yeast combines with sour cherries. Alcohol and holiday spice.

T: The caramel notes really jump out for the style, and like the nose combine with slightly sour cherries. Alcohol is almost completely masked. Nice back-and -forth of sweet-n-sour, with notes of white wine.

M: Fairly light and festive on the palate, nice for a holiday ale. Ample carbonation gives the beer an effervescent feel. Washed down clean.

There's a nice balance if disparate flavors, nothing is off. These weren't the flavors i was expecting from a holiday saison. Different and delicious.

Nov 28, 2014
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KFBR392 from Illinois

4.12/5  rDev +3.8%

Appearance: Pours with a massive head of about three fingers yet settles in to a rich bubbly half finger while drinking. Active carbonation is on the lower end for a saison but that makes sense with how big this one is. The color is lighter brown with some ruby red accents.

Smell: Exotic spices and cinnamon warm on the front, but some woody notes of oak and cedar balance them out. More of the traditional saison notes open up on the body with plenty of bright fruits and buttery doughy malts. Some dessert type aromas of chocolate and caramel pop up on the back end.

Taste: Herbal hops, root, and some spicy malts open up first. Some slight medicinal flavors hit on the body and that tartness plays well with the rounded spices and bready malts. Biscuit and cereal continue to shine into the finish and linger on the palate. Some pepper and cinnamon warm up the back end.

Mouthfeel: Highly drinkable, especially for a spiced saison. Carbonation is bright on the mouthfeel but fits without being distracting.

Overall: My second Fantome wasn't infected and turned out to be one heck of a beer. Spices play well off the moderate tartness and traditional saison notes. Happy I took a shot at this, should have grabbed a couple more since it was on sale.

Sep 02, 2014
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babaracas from Florida

4/5  rDev +0.8%
look: 4 | smell: 4 | taste: 4 | feel: 4 | overall: 4

Pours a murky red/orange/brown with a dense but quick-fading finger of cream colored foam. Wanted to be a gusher, but wasn't. Smell: caramel, dates, grain twang, doughy with spices... cardamom and maybe a tiny bit of clove. Plum as it warms more. Taste: unripe plum meets cocoa, brown bread, tons of caramel, with red apple skin, cardamom, maybe cinnamon? in the finish. It captures the winter / christmas beer motif very well without going overboard on sweetness or spices. Low carb, on the cusp of full-bodied, abv only hinted at in the finish.

May 23, 2014
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brewdlyhooked13 from Ohio

3.27/5  rDev -17.6%
look: 3.75 | smell: 3.5 | taste: 3.25 | feel: 3.5 | overall: 2.75

Appearance - uncorks with impressive force, blowing the cork remover off the bottle as it rested on top for a moment. Wow. A quick pour into a Sam Adams drinking glass yielded one finger of beer and the rest foam, to the top of the glass. That's bubbly. This will definitely take some time to get the glass filled up. The head slowly fades back, showing a bright reddish amber beer below miles of drying manila foam.

Aroma - a little yeasty, a little sweetness, definitely funky. Light roasty elements with warming, along with some general savory like aromas.

Taste - maybe the first time I've ever picked up on the leathery component of this kind of beer, holding the first mouthful for a bit and just breathing. Has a smoky element too, and though I was concerned that this would be too funky to enjoy, it is not. The tartness, some general malt sweetness, and the aforementioned flavors make for an interesting mix of flavor. It's not really moving me towards the style as a pick, but it'll drink. The swallow shows a little more smoky/rauch type flavor as the abv warms the finish.

Mouthfeel - super-crisp with the bubbles, the bead will likely not quit for the entire bottle. Medium body with light slickness.

Overall - not a huge fan of the style, so these intense samples are more challenging. I am having no trouble getting familiar with the flavors at play and appreciate them, but this isn't one I'd get again.

Apr 30, 2014
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CloudStrife from New York

4.34/5  rDev +9.3%
look: 4 | smell: 4.25 | taste: 4.5 | feel: 4.25 | overall: 4.25

From a 750ml capped and corked bottle. A holiday ornament on the label.

A: Hazy orangish brown with minimal head. Decent amount of visible carbonation in the body. No real lacing left behind.

S: Light sour tart is the first thing I notice. A dark fruit aroma lingers in the background.

T: Nice blend here. Rich malt goodness adds raisin and plum to the mix. A hint of spiciness just adds uniqueness. Then the great tart character just dominates throughout. Alcohol is well hidden.

M: Puckering sourness at first takes a second to get everything in line. Light to medium body with a crisp and punctual finish. Nice and warming.

Overall I'm real happy with this beer. Havent been able to try any other Fantome beers and this one reminds me of a quad mixed with a sour. Try this if you can.

Apr 15, 2014
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alpinebryant from Connecticut

4.04/5  rDev +1.8%
look: 3.5 | smell: 3.75 | taste: 4.25 | feel: 4.25 | overall: 4

A: Pours a slightly powdery bright blood orange color with some minor sediment floating in the bottle. Visibile carbonation coming up through transparency through the bottom of the glass.

S: Aroma of rich caramel and barleywine along with a light spicy finish. Sweet with some spices and herbs.

T: Flavors of rich sweet malt, some holiday spices that are faint but present. Most holiday beers have lots of nutmeg or cinnamon. There may be a hint of cinnamon in here, but I am guessing that the spices are locally grown if not wild as I remember reading Fantome likes to do. I think I can pick up some cardamom but who knows?

M: Thick and chewy with light carbonation. syrupy almost, at 10%, I really apprecciate the body as it is full and not overly carbonated .

O: Overall this is a good saison. I prefer lighter saisons however this is likely the highest abv I have had of the style that I can think of off the top of my head. It is clearly enjoyable and while not as good as Hiver or some other Fantome saisons I have had, it is clearly different and good for the winter season.

Mar 22, 2014
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puboflyons from New Hampshire

3.73/5  rDev -6%
look: 3.75 | smell: 3.75 | taste: 3.75 | feel: 3.5 | overall: 3.75

From the green, corked 750 ml. bottle. Sampled on March 8, 2014. I had to use a corkscrew.

The pour is a slightly hazy bronze-brown with a long lasting cream colored head. A slight fog to the beer. It has been sitting for a few months.

The aroma is of dark toasted malts, pear, apple, and a little spice. A modest earthy hop note in there too that reminds me of something more boozy than I expected.

The body is medium to full. It is also smooth.

The taste has many of the Belgian malty and yeasty characteristics I enjoy. There is a kind of toasted biscuit note too. The finish tends to be dry and bitter. It lingers. It is really well balanced.

Mar 09, 2014
Fantôme De Noel from Brasserie Fantôme
Beer rating: 89 out of 100 with 646 ratings