Welcome to BeerAdvocate!

Looking to talk, rate or trade beer? Join today by creating your free account.

Dismiss Notice
Curious about recent updates to the site and app? Check the Announcements forum for updates.
Dismiss Notice
Love Belgian Beer?

Join us Sep 17 in Portland, Maine for Return of the Belgian Beer Fest, featuring hundreds of authentic Belgian beers and Belgian-inspired offerings.

Tickets + more: beeradvocate.com/belgian

De Ranke Père Noël | Brouwerij De Ranke

YOUR RATING = None |
BA SCORE
86
very good
226 Reviews
THE BROS
-
no score
Send samples
De Ranke Père NoëlDe Ranke Père Noël
BEER INFO

Brewed by:
Brouwerij De Ranke
Belgium | website

Style: Belgian Strong Pale Ale

Alcohol by volume (ABV): 7.00%

Availability: Winter

Notes / Commercial Description:
Père Noël is a Christmas ale, though very different from any other Christmas ales you might know. While most Christmas ales are rich & sweet, this one is amber-coloured, 7% vol. Alc. strong and tastes quite bitter. The complex taste is completed with the addition of liquorice. In the recipe we can also find pale malt, Munich malt, Caramel malt, Brewers Gold hops and Hallertau hops.

Added by stcules on 12-04-2001

BEER STATS
Reviews:
226
Ratings:
427
Avg:
3.81
pDev:
16.8%
 
 
Wants:
8
Gots:
34
For Trade:
1
View: Beers | Events
User Reviews
Sort by:  Recent | High | Low | Top Raters
first ← prev | 1-25 | 26-50 | 51-75  | nextlast
Reviews: 226 | Ratings: 427
Photo of Dunkelganger4
3.12/5  rDev -18.1%
look: 3.5 | smell: 3.25 | taste: 2.75 | feel: 3.75 | overall: 3.25

Appearance: Gold in color with a large white billowing head
Aroma: Cracker malt with a small cheesy note
Taste: The taste follows the nose with less isovalerlic character and with more depth of the malt character along with an interesting melange of minerality, oxidation, and a grassy/floral note on the finish
Mouthfeel: Medium-light mouthfeel with high carbonation
Overall: This beer is past its expiration date and the degradation of the flavors show that quite clearly and seems to be lost between a pale ale and a Christams ale

 534 characters

Photo of leroybrown10
3.1/5  rDev -18.6%
look: 4.5 | smell: 3.25 | taste: 3 | feel: 2.5 | overall: 3

Pours a deep orange-gold with fairly heavy haze. Large cream colored head is dense and long lasting. Lots of sticky lacing left behind.

Aroma is caramel malt and Belgian yeast. Nutmeg, earth, and cut grass. Some hops which I think contribute to the earth and cut grass. Green apple and pear towards the end.

More caramel malt on the tongue to go with a weird licorice flavor. Pepper, nutmeg, and cinnamon. Grassy, earthy hops with something floral as well. Belgian yeast throughout along with a soapy undertone.

Medium body with medium carbonation. Fairly dry with some metallic notes. Licorice seems to linger, bitter and unpleasant.

A weird beer that doesn't seem to know what it wants to be. Is it a Belgian Pale? a Christmas beer?, a hoppy Belgian? It really doesn't quite get it right for any of those categories. Nothing seems to blend well or complement.

 878 characters

Photo of rodbeermunch
3.26/5  rDev -14.4%
look: 3.75 | smell: 3.25 | taste: 3.25 | feel: 3 | overall: 3.25

Amber colored beer with white head, 3/5" in depth. Actually comes off unexpectedly hoppy. But the yeast phenols are no slouch in this one and they still beat out the hops in the aroma, although they gave it quite the go. More phenolic than spice rack.

Taste was a big flavor beer, those hops and phenols are still duking it out. It doesn't really taste like anything that makes me think of Christmas. I thought I was getting into a belgian winter warmer. Instead I got a belgian tripel ipa or something.

 510 characters

Photo of AndrewMichael
3.75/5  rDev -1.6%
look: 3.75 | smell: 3.75 | taste: 3.75 | feel: 3.75 | overall: 3.75

750 mL capped bottle wrapped in paper, came in the Rare Beer Club shipment. Poured into a stemmed glass.
Golden color and nice, white head on the beer.
Belgian yeast and spices on the smell and taste.
A bit hoppier for a Belgian ale, but still get the distinct Belgian yeast and spices coming through as mentioned for the smell and taste.
Nice overall feel and enjoyable beer.

 381 characters

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

From cervezasespeciales. In Teku glass. Watching Sons of Anarchy 3x08.Very bitter at the beginning. Then its bitterness fades away and leaves its place to an also delicious sweetness. No trace of liquorice

 205 characters

Photo of MrDell
4.32/5  rDev +13.4%
look: 5 | smell: 4.75 | taste: 4 | feel: 4.25 | overall: 4.25

20.12.2015

De Ranke Père Noël
Belgian Ale - 7% - 75cl bottle - Best before 09.09.17


Appearance: Cloudy golden ale with a beautiful big creamy white head. Tiny slow moving carbonation moving up centre of glass. Lots of lacing courtesy of the creaminess.

Aroma: Beautiful sweet yeast, hops and malt. Fantastically balanced on the nose.

Taste: Yeast upfront, then a hint of honey and liquorice followed by a looooong hop finish and then, when you're not expecting it, the licquorice creeps in again.

Mouth feel: Creamy and smooth.

Overall: I don't know if I would have been able to name the licquorice had I not already known it's added during the brew but it certainly gives this beer a unique flavour. I enjoyed this one on an unusually warm day, sunny day out side in December and it was a perfect beer for the occasion. A welcome change from the usual dark spicy and sweet Christmas beers, this ones hoppy, sweet and then bitter. It's certainly a beautiful looking beer and the aroma is also fantastic. 8.5 / 10.

 1,023 characters

Photo of chinchill
3.84/5  rDev +0.8%
look: 3.75 | smell: 4 | taste: 3.75 | feel: 4 | overall: 3.75

330 ml bottle with a BB date of 2018.
Poured, with some sediment, into a Belgian snifter. Hazy honey colored body is topped by a decent sized and quite durable head. Splotchy lacing.

Aroma: sweet and fruity with a fair amount of alcohol.
Flavor: moderately bitter. Bready, nutty and lightly fruity.

O: An Xmas ale that is neither sweet nor spicy, this will break some expectations for some.

 399 characters

Photo of Meganomiidae
3.63/5  rDev -4.7%
look: 3.75 | smell: 3.25 | taste: 3.75 | feel: 3.75 | overall: 3.75

.A: Pours golden-orange with a finger-width head, which dissipates quickly. Almost no lacing.
S: A bit tart on the nose, strangely reminiscent of sour beers. Citrus fruit, Christmas spices, light malt scent.
T: Contrary to the nose, no sourness. Slightly more bitter than expected. Carrot-like on the forefront, followed by earthiness and spice. Tastes like a boatload of herbs went into this, probably helping to contribute to the bitterness.
M: Light body, rolls through the mouth with ease.

Decent, but not the best of the style. Worth trying for the intense herb lovers.

 581 characters

Photo of Brutaltruth
3.85/5  rDev +1%
look: 3.75 | smell: 3.75 | taste: 4 | feel: 3.75 | overall: 3.75

This interesting little brew was enjoyed from the 11.2 oz bottle in a snifter. Ale pours a hazy deep amber golden with a effervescent white head that dissipates quickly to a very thin ring with little lacing. Nose of Belgian candy sugars, citrus fruits of lemon and orange zest, spicy peppery hops, and sweet Belgian yeast. Flavors, with a good little rest in the glass give rise to sweet candy malts to the front and sides, sweet tart like citrus flavors to the sides as well, and a white pepper and bittering hops bite in the back as well as on the aftertaste. Smooth, wet, well carbonated mouth feel. Would love to have a bigger bottle of this to lay down for a number of years and try again. Very deep intense flavors that improve with warmth. Cold it is just a lightly sweet bitter beast, warmed it is a complex multi-layered delicious brew that keeps me going back and changing my numbers.

Happy New Year----Cheers!

 929 characters

Photo of craftbeersweden
3.92/5  rDev +2.9%
look: 4 | smell: 3.75 | taste: 4 | feel: 3.75 | overall: 4

Beatiful orange, hazy beer with a two finger high, white headthat leaves lacing on the glass when it slowly sinks down to a thin top on the beer.

Nose: Belian yeast, citrus, orange, grass, honey, pear and melon.
Taste: Grassy hops, herbs, orange zest, citrus, white pepper and grapefruit.
Mouth: Medium body. High carbonation. Crisp. High bitterness that stays in the mouth and ends with some sour-sweet tickling feeling at the back of my tongue.

A beatiful Belgian Christmas beer from De Ranke (of course). De Ranke still hasn't disappoint me - They always produce great beer!

 583 characters

Photo of seedyone
3/5  rDev -21.3%

12/19/13 On tap at Rattle n Hum, NYC. On tap. Not sure what I have here. No distinct aroma, good lacing, some hops, but not much, nice body but no distinguishing character. In the spirit of the season one might expect some warm spiciness. Not here. So what's left? Meh!

 270 characters

Photo of mwilbur
3.89/5  rDev +2.1%
look: 4 | smell: 4.25 | taste: 3.75 | feel: 3.75 | overall: 3.75

Poured from 750 mL bottle into snifter. Paper wrapper says best before end of 08 20 18. Bottle cap says expires 10/08/18.
A: Pours a murky golden-orange hue with a massive 4 inch rocky white head. Excellent retention and decent lacing.
S: Orange zest, spicy and grassy hops, mild grapefruit, melon, pear, honey, and white pepper. Quite deep and complex.
T: Strong white pepper followed by herbal and grassy hops (more bitter than I was expecting). Fruit hits later with delicate pear, light citrus, and a hint of melon.
M: Quite bitter, especially for style. Light body. Mildly sweet.
D: A decent brew. Quite bitter, which takes this down a notch in my book...clashes too much with the style.

2015 vintage. Poured from 750 mL bottle into tulip. Bottled 11 Jul 15. Best by 13/07/20.
A: Pours a clear dark orange amber with highly active carbonation jets producing an overly large 4-5 inch frothy white head. Excellent retention. Some lacing. (3.75)
S: Mint, grassy and herbal hop notes, white pepper, soft clove and vanilla. (4.25)
T: Follows aroma fairly closely with mint and the herbal hop notes hitting first. These are closely followed by the white pepper and subtle spice notes (clove, vanilla, and almond). Some dry cracker. With warming, the vanilla and almond notes become stronger...very nice. (3.75)
M: Light-medium body. Bitter and dry, which (again) is a bit much for the style. Subtle spicy sweetness. (3.75)
D: End result: I basically agree with my previous review. One thing that can be said is that this has very good consistency. (3.75)

 1,565 characters

Photo of thierrynantes
3.93/5  rDev +3.1%
look: 3.75 | smell: 3.75 | taste: 4 | feel: 4 | overall: 4

Beer bottle (33 cl.) purchased from La Cervoiserie, and tasted in 2014.

Appearance : orange color, with white foamy head (nice lacing).
Smell : fruity and malty aromas.
Taste & mouthfeel : sweet-sour and malt flavors with a long aftertaste.
Drinkability : a good beer in the style Belgian Strong Pale Ale.

 306 characters

Photo of CookstLiquor
3.85/5  rDev +1%
look: 4 | smell: 4 | taste: 3.75 | feel: 4 | overall: 3.75

Poured from a 330 ml bottle. Pours a hazy orangish-brownish colour. Huge fruit and booze notes on the nose with hints of herbs. Taste offers apricot and stone fruits, some nutty/marzipan notes and a big bitter finish to cut through the sweetness. Bottle-conditioned, so big carbonation.

 286 characters

Photo of rdickey
4.34/5  rDev +13.9%
look: 4 | smell: 4.25 | taste: 4.5 | feel: 4.25 | overall: 4.25

A: A very dark gold, almost bordering on brown, body is topped by a fine, off-white head that lingers a reasonable period and leaves narrow strips of lacing.

S: The expected pepperiness is complemented by a nice grassy hoppiness, along with a hint of citrus.

T: The hops hit my tongue first, and although the grassy element remains, it is now complemented with an herbal element that adds an appealing depth. There's a slight hint of anise, an expansion of the citrus, and the classic Belgian white pepper rounds it out.

M: Moderate to high zippiness works well here; it almost floats in my mouth.

D: I will be the first to acknowledge that this isn't the most Christmasy beer, at least in the traditional sense of dark, spiced and generally heavy ales. Nevertheless, it's a very nice beer and, given that I love Belgian pales, I'll pick one up around the holidays whenever I have the opportunity.

 901 characters

Photo of StonedTrippin
3.44/5  rDev -9.7%
look: 3.5 | smell: 3.25 | taste: 3.5 | feel: 3.5 | overall: 3.5

I was fortunate enough to taste both 2010 and 2013 vintages side by side at the bull and bush holiday event last night, and my take on this beer is that time does not flatter it at all. it pours a dark honey color with rusty orange hues and a robust whitish head with excellent retention. the nose is strange, juicy, rotting fruit, and Belgian yeast, an odd combination. it smells like compost when its half ready, less earthy, but equally sort of sweet and vinegary, not fully appetizing. the flavor is fresher, but still with a juicy fruity element that doesn't really fit what I thought knew about holiday beer. not overly spiced, but some herbal flavors hit, as does some bitter citrus in the finish. Belgian yeast seems out of place for the flavor profile too, this is all over the place. the 2013 vintage had a decent mouthfeel, bubbly and cleaner than the messy taste, but the 2010 had lost its vigorous carbonation and came across particularly thin as a result. I didn't really care for either one, as they lacked that winter warming property that I love about holiday beer. I would pass this up if I encounter is again.

 1,128 characters

Photo of RonaldTheriot
3.52/5  rDev -7.6%
look: 3.75 | smell: 3.5 | taste: 3.5 | feel: 3.5 | overall: 3.5

De Ranke Père Noël has a very thick, creamy, off-white head, an initially clear, quite bubbly, amber appearance, with little tan grit suspended throughout, and some moderate lacing left behind on the glass. The beer clouds up when the bottom contents are swished and poured in. Aroma is of spices (white pepper?), some citrus peel, malt, grain husk, and sweetness. Taste is of white pepper, other spices, white bread, malt, fairly strong bitterness, citrus, sugar, but no licorice. Mouthfeel is medium and prickly, to an extent, and De Ranke Père Noël finishes semi-dry, spicy, and drinkable. Overall, this is really tasty.

RJT

 633 characters

Photo of Chico1985
3.74/5  rDev -1.8%
look: 4 | smell: 3.75 | taste: 3.75 | feel: 3.5 | overall: 3.75

The pour is dark copper-ish orange with some haziness. Thick off-white head retains well as a patchy cap that leaves good lace.

Scents of sugar cookies, big herbal and earthy hops, Belgian farm, yeast, citrus.

Taste is quite farmy, hoppy, and sweet. Lots of herbal hop, spices, citrus, grass, sweet caramel malts, honey, some bread, etc.

Quite carbonated, seems overly foamy. Feels bigger than 7% with some alcohol heat there.

Strong flavors in every area (hops, spice, farm, sweetness) make this seem a little all over the place, but it's good overall. Complex and somewhat intense flavors for 7%.

 602 characters

Photo of bump8628
4.18/5  rDev +9.7%
look: 4.5 | smell: 4 | taste: 4.25 | feel: 4 | overall: 4.25

Classy packaging, typical of De Ranke. Light amber, mostly clear, with a thick clumpy white head that sticks to the tulip. Just a nice spicy Belgian ale, big black and white pepper notes, along with a wallop of grassy hops. A hint of liquorice adds some intrigue but isn't obvious or overwhelming. Very dry and digestible. A snappy, almost chalky, hop bitterness lingers on the finish. This doesn't scream of the holiday season, but certainly screams of a quality, enjoyable Belgian ale. De Ranke makes good beer, I wish we got more of their range around these parts.

 567 characters

Photo of UCLABrewN84
3.76/5  rDev -1.3%
look: 3.75 | smell: 4 | taste: 3.75 | feel: 3.25 | overall: 3.75

On tap at Lucky Baldwins in Pasadena, CA.

Pours a clear orange with a foamy bone head that settles to a film on top of the beer. Foamy swaths of lace form around the glass on the drink down. Smell is of malt, grain, fruit, and slight spice aromas. Taste is much the same with spice and hop flavors on the finish. There is a mild amount of spice bitterness on the palate with each sip. This beer has a low level of carbonation with an almost flat mouthfeel. Overall, this is a pretty good beer but the mouthfeel on this one isn't too good.

 540 characters

Photo of falloutsnow
3.94/5  rDev +3.4%
look: 3.75 | smell: 4 | taste: 4 | feel: 4 | overall: 3.75

From: Binny's, Champaign, IL
Date: Best by 9/27/2017
Glass: Tulip

I'm not sure why this is considered a Christmas beer, considering it lacks the spices and obvious heaviness of many holiday-themed beers, but I suppose its winter release schedule is justification enough. Pere Noel is a complex, varied Belgian-style ale that manages to still come across as clean and distinct, rather than muddied, despite the myriad flavors from pale and caramel-like malts, bitter and grassy hops, and Belgian yeast. Hoppy, but not as intensely so as XX Bitter, I substantially enjoyed this beer, and like most in the De Ranke portfolio, found it ending far too early. If only this brewery's beers were more affordable, I'd happily enjoy them on a more frequent basis.

Pours a tall (>3cm) head of off-white to light beige foam, composed of small bubbles, looking fairly dense, yet declining in about a minute to a modest ring around the glass with some hazy residual foam atop the body of the beer. Lacing is present, nothing amazing, some moderate lines and clumps of foam remain attached to the walls of the glass. Beer is a semi-hazy (40-50% opacity) cold orange color, with light bringing out pale yellow and orange hues. Carbonation is visible through the haze, rising up from the bottom of the glass.

Aroma is sweet and malty, yet prominently featuring spicy hops and phenols. Background scents are somewhat grassy, with backing Belgian yeast and slight bubblegum. In general, complex and enjoyable.

The major flavors in the beer are pale-meets-light-caramel-malt sweetness, European hop bitterness with floral and grassy tones, and yeast with complex yeast-produced esters/phenols. Think of the experience as a hoppy, light caramel-colored Belgian ale. Front of palate finds floral and grassy hop flavors tied to a moderate malt sweetness (perhaps pilsner with a touch of some light caramel and munich malt?). Mid-palate is a well-balanced mix of pale and caramel malt with bitterness arising from European hop choices, and some interesting and hard-to-place flavors from the yeast (at different times I've gotten pie spices, coconut, ) that always seem to complement the beer fairly well. Back of palate is of European hop bitterness with light, sweet maltiness behind it, along with the continuation of the complex secondary yeast metabolites. Aftertaste is pleasantly bitter with a background of slight breadiness with pale to amber-colored malt sweetness, slight bubblegum and phenolics lingering from the yeast.

Beer is medium-bodied with carbonation of medium intensity, resulting in a slightly foamy, smooth, never fizzy mouthfeel that blends unobtrusively with the flavors. Closes quite dry, with modest stickiness lingering across the palate.

 2,751 characters

Photo of acevenom
4.08/5  rDev +7.1%
look: 4.25 | smell: 4.25 | taste: 4 | feel: 4 | overall: 4

Poured into a snifter glass. The beer pours hazy orange golden with a thick off-white head that dissipates slowly. Some lacing is left on the side of the glass as the head retreats. The beer smells of barley malt with some nice fruity notes. I get lemon and banana as well as some clove and pepper spiciness. I'm also picking up some grassiness as well. The grassy hop notes provide a nice flavor for this beer as well as back end bitterness. I get the spice from the nose, but more of those pepper notes than the clove notes, but the clove notes do come out more in later sips. I also get plenty of that bready malt after the first sip. I don't notice the 7% ABV at all. The flavors are nicely balanced. The body is medium with moderate carbonation. The beer is smooth and there's a lingering aftertaste of hops from this beer. While the alcohol isn't present in the flavor, it brings a nice warming feel after a few sips. This is a very good beer.

 949 characters

Photo of hustlesworth
3.13/5  rDev -17.8%
look: 4.75 | smell: 3.5 | taste: 3 | feel: 2 | overall: 3

A- pours a hazy warm honey orange with a thick and creamy eggshell colored head. The foam has that hoppy look to it and there are chunks of lace stuck all over the glass.

S- nicely fruity and somewhat spicy aroma with plenty of yeast character. Melon, pear, banana, woodsy notes and peppery spice. Hops are lemony and grassy with a noble aroma. Kinda smells like a very yeasty pilsner.

T- interesting flavor. Almost chocolatey in a way so I'm wondering if there is any spice added to this beer. After a few sips, I also start to notice an odd flavor transition. The flavor isn't very fruity and it starts off with this weird sort of carob flavor, then on to some woodsy possibly grainy notes intermingled with what seems to be a combination of hop, yeast, and alcohol bitterness with some peppery spice. Finishes with a weird spice and slight tartness.

MF- feels almost watery although its not, and even thought there's plenty of carbonation it feels strangely flat and one-dimensional. Somewhat dry and clean on the palate.

D- I don't know about this one. It's not a bad beer but it seems all mixed up.

 1,111 characters

Photo of BlurryVisi0n
3.62/5  rDev -5%
look: 4 | smell: 3.75 | taste: 3.5 | feel: 3.75 | overall: 3.5

Served in a tulip glass and thanks to Luis for splitting the bottle.

Appearance: A hazy-cloudy amber with a ridiculous amount of bubbling on the body. `Real thick white head that the frame barely disappears that rose to just under a finger's length.

Smell: Light yeasty feel almost like baked bread. It is light or i would have gone a little higher.

Taste: Heavy yeast but comes off sour as well. I would best compare the taste to lemon skin meets rye bread. Hoppy, still bitter not too bad but not on the level of greatness.

Mouth: Medium, and sticks pretty well.

Overall: Not a bad brew, not sure if it's "Christmas" worthy. Worth trying but not keeping. Hope you have enjoyed better than me. Salud!

 711 characters

Photo of impending
3.47/5  rDev -8.9%
look: 3.5 | smell: 4 | taste: 3.5 | feel: 3 | overall: 3

B

750ml into a tulip. Pours a hazed amber, towering dense orange tinged head recedes to clumpy froth, excellent lacing.

Sweet spicy powdery yeast aroma. Clean and upbeat. Apple, apricot and ginger.

Low in sweetness, not particularly fruity. Sharp dry twang intros a surprising amount of equal part grass and earthy hop bitter which is pleasantly short lived. Bit more than thin bodied lively mouthfeel.
where's the licorice
cheers
jd

 436 characters

first ← prev | 1-25 | 26-50 | 51-75  | nextlast
De Ranke Père Noël from Brouwerij De Ranke
86 out of 100 based on 226 ratings.
  • About Us

    Your go-to website for beer (since 1996), publishers of BeerAdvocate magazine (since 2006) and hosts of world-class beer events (since 2003). Respect Beer.
  • Return of the Belgian Beer Fest

    BeerAdvocate Brings its All-Belgian Fest to Portland, Maine on September 17, 2016. Tickets are on sale now.

    Learn More
  • Get the Mag

    Become a BeerAdvocate magazine print subscriber today.

    Subscribe