Noir De Dottignies
Brouwerij Brasserie De Ranke

Noir De DottigniesNoir De Dottignies
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Belgian Strong Dark Ale
Ranked #98
Ranked #11,930
3.92 | pDev: 9.95%
Brouwerij Brasserie De Ranke
Very Good
Noir De DottigniesNoir De Dottignies
Notes: The heaviest ale on our menu with a very rich taste, coming from the six different kinds of malt we use. These malts also give it that rich, dark, nearly black colour. The royal doses of Challenger and Saaz hops bring the typical balance between sweet and bitter.bitter.
Reviews: 118 | Ratings: 291 | Log in to view all ratings and sort
Photo of ChrisCage
4.3/5  rDev +9.7%
look: 4 | smell: 4 | taste: 4.5 | feel: 4.5 | overall: 4.25

This brew has been aged for a good 7 years or so as of this review.....

A- This has an incredible looking foam head that is fizzy around the rim, yet the inside of the top is very dense and looks like we have plentiful yet fine carbonation happening within this light tan colored head! The beer itself is a dark hazy red/coffee/milk chocolate coloration, and there is plenty of suspended yeast floating throughout. Lacing is modest at best, with most to all of the foam swiftly sliding back into the abyss after a good swirl.

S- Red licorice sweetness, toasty grains, oaked nuances, milk chocolate, rummy Christmas fruitcake, almond nuttiness, creamy yeast and some mild funky spices about say what I am smelling overall. Starts out very sweet and malty, stays that way throughout and finishes with very mild hop presence....

T- The flavors spill over onto the palate, much the same way they smelled. Rummy Christmas cake is probably the biggest characteristic, followed by lots of creamy yeast, raisin like flavors (similar to what a fortified wine is like), some milk chocolate and root Earthiness cross over my tongue as well. Dark chocolate notes along with almond cream, bread, mild Belgian funk and a finish that is just clean enough yet alcoholic and somewhat bitter. Quite robust overall!

M/O- Full bodied.....I think the long aging assisted in this process, and the carbonation is velvety smooth. I think that this beer is quite drinkable and to anyone that reads this and has some patience, let this sit in a cool dark place and forget about it for as long as possible. Alcohol is noticeable but superbly smooth for the potency that this one is.....would pair well with strong nutty cheeses or with a chocolate dessert. Recommended!

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Photo of jmdrpi
4.18/5  rDev +6.6%
look: 4.25 | smell: 4.25 | taste: 4.25 | feel: 4 | overall: 4

330ml bottle, into the branded stemmed goblet.

pours very dark brown, almost black. thick cream colored head. aroma and taste have typical dark malt flavors, but also some roasty, almost stout-like characteristics. medium bodied, smooth. overall a nice mild twist on the style.

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Photo of janubio
4/5  rDev +2%
look: 4 | smell: 4 | taste: 4 | feel: 4 | overall: 4

Black colour, red notes to the light, medium head with good retention, good lace. Aroma of chocolate, licorice, dried fruits, spices. it eeminds me of a Christmas. Medium body, creamy palate, good carbonation. Boozy finish. Taste reminds me of a Christmas too: chocolate spices, licorice, dried fruits. Really good.

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Photo of bark
2.88/5  rDev -26.5%
look: 3.25 | smell: 3.25 | taste: 2.75 | feel: 3 | overall: 2.5

Vintage 2010.

The colour is very dark brown, the liquid is clear. The low off-white head disappears quickly.

The smell is intensive sweet with roasted notes. Some Coca Cola, caramel, raisins, chocolate candy, spices, chloride and warming alcohol.

The taste is surprisingly bitter. Passing light sweetness. Growing butterscotch, raisins and alcohol. Low to medium body. The aftertaste got hot unclean alcohol, sharp sweetness, roasted nuts and chocolate toffee. The finish is harsh with notes of cocoa and chemical alcohol.

The carbonation is medium to strong, the small sharp bubbles are long-lived. The liquid is light.

This bottle got BBE 2015 stamped on it. I’ll guess they were right about that.

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Photo of StonedTrippin
3.75/5  rDev -4.3%
look: 3.75 | smell: 3.75 | taste: 3.75 | feel: 3.75 | overall: 3.75

2010, probably a little past its prime right now, i will have to revisit this freshed some time, but its still doing pretty well for its age. looks almost more of a brown ale than a black beer, i can see some light coming in around the edges and it looks thinner than anticipated, although the head is rising high and belgian looking. a little mucky, but alive at least. the aroma is a little astringent, a farmhouse sort of yeast that seems a little tired, and slight tannic properties creeping in. i get some cocoa and dried fruit from the malt, but not the darker roast i was expecting from this, it stops well short of that. its also wildly hoppy for a belgian beer, almost a belgian black ipa of sorts, as bitterness is extremely high as this finishes, and for a moment its in front of both the yeast and the malts. chestnuts, raisins, oxidation, licorice, and this estery belgian yeast thats got some saison characteristics too. a little astringent to taste too, not quite sharp, but an old beer weirdness for sure. toffee and blackberry notes in here too. this is tasty stuff still, intriguing and different, oddly hoppy, over the hill just a bit, but a rustic and enjoyable brew. i will look to find a bottle of this that is considerably newer to compare...

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Photo of BeerAndGasMasks
4.14/5  rDev +5.6%
look: 4 | smell: 4.25 | taste: 4.25 | feel: 3.75 | overall: 4

From the bottle, it pours a darker amber with a small tan head. The head lasts, diminishing to covering with lakes. Sweetish with prunish scent. Taste follows the nose, with a clinging covering over the tongue. Nice!

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Photo of Beginner2
4.41/5  rDev +12.5%
look: 4 | smell: 4.25 | taste: 4.5 | feel: 4.5 | overall: 4.5

Less than 2% of the beers I drink do not get advice from me.
Noir is among that group that leaves even the helpful critic in me speechless.
Healthy head to start, it stays around until the end... albeit as a thin covering.
Smell is a sweet, dark, wintery, dried fruits. I will assume brewers sugar and a yeast highlights this fruiticopia.
For Taste, I get balance... I presume from hops, but it almost doesn't matter because Noir somehow does not get syrupy.
Feel is a smooth and as full as I can remember in a long time.
Overall, all I can say is : "Noir, were you been my whole life?"

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Photo of Mindcrime1000
2.57/5  rDev -34.4%
look: 3.75 | smell: 3 | taste: 2.25 | feel: 2.25 | overall: 2.5

Poured from a single-serve bottle.

Look--One of the darkest dark-strongs I've sampled. Little of the hallmark burgundy/red color often seen in this style--much more of a straight brown. An initial finger and a half head that quickly dissipates to a faint but persistent lacing.

Smell--A very forward sweet smell, trending to molasses, with the typical dried fruit smells more subdued. A little unbalanced in this respect.

Taste--I tend to love the malty goodness of dark strongs, but this iteration lends too much "brown sugar" or "molasses" for this drinker's liking. It lacks the balance of other takes--it lacks the dark chocolate or other bitter complexity that might even things out. Given the ABV, one would think there would be a "booziness" element to balance the sweetness, but even that is fairly overwhelmed.

Feel--Not heavy--but not inspirational either. The sweetness carries through to the mouthfeel, resulting in an oily, sticky, and disappointingly heavy impression. Dark strongs are inherently full bodied and often sticky, but the sweetness is sufficiently cloying that it drags this version down.

Overall--Notwithstanding a unique look, and an intriguing initial smell, this take on the style is an average one at best. There are others in the same price range that will provide more balance and complexity. Not offensive, but not one I would recommend, and not one I will likely try again, unless I'm feeling charitable for a re-review.

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Photo of Dzu
4.18/5  rDev +6.6%
look: 4.5 | smell: 4 | taste: 4.25 | feel: 4 | overall: 4.25

Poured into goblet.
L: Beautiful very dark brown with medium bige foam head.
S: Tart wine notes, plums, chocolate.
T: Good balanced with well aftertaste. Dark fruits, raisin some spices and weak bitterness.
F: Oily body, medium carbonation.
O: Great representative of belgian dark. Will be pleasure to try it again.

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Photo of Sludgeman
3.47/5  rDev -11.5%
look: 4 | smell: 3.75 | taste: 3.5 | feel: 2.75 | overall: 3.25

On tap at The Sovereign, Washington, DC

Nothing pops for me. Another beer where the mouthfeel takes away from the taste. 3.25

A - 4

S - Sedate aroma of molasses. 3.75

T - Figs, raisins, and definitely molasses sweetness. 3.5

MF - If this beer had a sharper brighter MF it would be totally different. 2.75

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Photo of DJ-Hophead
3.98/5  rDev +1.5%
look: 4 | smell: 4 | taste: 4 | feel: 3.75 | overall: 4

330 ml bottle, Beergium - Pours dark cloudy brown with a large tanned foamy head. Medium carbonation. Nice lacing. Smell - yeasty, bready, roasted malts. Taste - Sweet foretaste , roasted malty finish with a little bitter and alcoholic feel. Easy drinking strong ale.

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Photo of drmeto
4.2/5  rDev +7.1%
look: 4.75 | smell: 4 | taste: 4.25 | feel: 4 | overall: 4.25

-pours a cloudy mahogany with a medium,frothy,beige head
-roasty,nutty,cherries,spicy,black bread,raisins,plums,nougat,toasty finish
-high bitterniss for the style
-medium to high carbonation
-medium body
-faint alcohol note
Differs quite a lot from your usual Belgian Dark Ales.
The Description of "somehwhere between Barleywine and Stout" is definitely right.
Great overall

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Photo of cjgiant
3.65/5  rDev -6.9%
look: 4.75 | smell: 4 | taste: 3.5 | feel: 3.5 | overall: 3.25

Bottle with no obvious dating:
Pours a deep mahogany. Head forms nicely but messy, but settles in amazingly: a creamy puck stays atop the pour as I let it "breathe".

Nose is on point, cola and dark fruit, maybe a light tartness with a hint of spice. Rather complex nose, if a tad weak.

Taste doesn't seem to fit the style listed here. Taste is a little raw and fairly woody. This beer is actually somewhat hop-forward, with a light burnt toast opening taste. This is followed by twig-like woody notes - green wood. There is a hint of muted mint-like taste at the end, maybe could be light pine against a hiddne maltiness.

Feel is a tad thin, but nicely carbonated.

This beer has a lot more in common with a porter that a Belgian Strong Ale, at least with this bottle. As a beer ignoring style, it seems okay, but for the style it seems off. With no idea on date, I can't tell if age could end up a factor, although I'm not sure age should be too big a deal for the style.
So, overall, not entirely sure on this one, but I don't see it being something worth buying again unless I otherwise something different about this beer.

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Photo of chinchill
4.41/5  rDev +12.5%
look: 4 | smell: 4.25 | taste: 4.5 | feel: 4.5 | overall: 4.5

330ml bottle of very dark brown ale that pours with a fine head. A layer of dark sediment remained on the bottom of the bottle after a complete pour.

The rich, moderately complex flavor is dominated by dark fruits and dark roasted malts. Traces of smoke, hints of black coffee, bitter chocolate and toffee. Everything, including bitter/sweet, seems in perfect balance.

O: Highly recommended.

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Photo of shigg85
4.44/5  rDev +13.3%
look: 4.5 | smell: 4.25 | taste: 4.5 | feel: 4.5 | overall: 4.5

This is an absolutely beautiful dubbel with nice, creamy froth thick and delicious with a fruity, strong ale flavor that makes every sip just as pleasing as the last.

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Photo of JackRWatkins
3.66/5  rDev -6.6%
look: 3 | smell: 4.5 | taste: 3.5 | feel: 3.5 | overall: 3.25

from the bottle in a st. bernardus glass

A: brown and cola colored, little to no head
S:very fragrant beer, very much like a stout, intensely malty (roasted malt) with notes of dark fruit as well, also after a while the malt smell mixes with the sweet fruit and candy sugar to create an almost cotton candy smell, very pleasant
T: very malty, mildly hoppy (could be a little less hoppy, I know this is De Ranke's MO but still) ,just a little more so than is common for the style, sweetness moves in given some time, enriches the experience
M: watery, a little oily but not much
O: Malty and bitter, not bad, but nothing to write home about, doesn't really add anything to the BSDA conversation. If you have never had a BSDA do not let this be your first, not because it is bad but because it is not the best, (not that this is the best either but delirium nocturnum is better and easier to find) however cold you think you should have it, have it just a tad warmer than that, tastes oddly like a good imperial stout, might benefit from letting the malt do a little bit less work, or maybe less roasted malt. This is definitely worth a try, I would recommend sipping it slow, not because it is relatively heavy but because the flavors will unfold better given a little bit of time.

Side note: though not nearly as good and I want to stress that, bears a subtle similarity to aventinus eisbock

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Photo of PorterLambic
4.27/5  rDev +8.9%
look: 4.5 | smell: 4.25 | taste: 4.25 | feel: 4.25 | overall: 4.25

Pours a mahogany color with a creamy, inch plus head that recedes fairl, evenly. Scattered sheeting on the glass is left behind with a film atop.
Smell is rich, malty, fruity (mostly cherries & plums) with a detectable hop presence. Terrific balance.
Taste is malt, fruit (again, cherries, plums, some fig), hint of sherry, hops and habit of nut. Love the balance here, too.
Medium-full body, lighter effervescence. Warming. Good stuff.

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Photo of Slack
3.74/5  rDev -4.6%
look: 4.25 | smell: 4 | taste: 3.5 | feel: 3.75 | overall: 3.75

Dark red/brown with a lot of head, >1 inch. No lacing visible.
Smell is fruit, bread, and sugar.
Taste is abundantly sweet with the same fruit notes. Am also picking up significant yeast.
Mouthful is medium to light with a fair amount of carbonation.
This beer fell short for me and I am unsure if maybe it was the draft or it just didn't agree with my palate. I was looking for something a bit more complex and all I got was a lot of sugar. Worth trying again at a later date.

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Photo of Sathanas
4.66/5  rDev +18.9%
look: 4.75 | smell: 4.25 | taste: 4.75 | feel: 5 | overall: 4.75

Big notes of dark sugar, anise, roasted malts, coffee, and dark fruits. No alcohol taste as the palate is overrun by the sweet, dark goodness that is this beer. This is an excellent example of a Belgian dark ale. Highly recommend tracking this big beauty down. Cheers!

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Photo of bubseymour
4.25/5  rDev +8.4%
look: 4.25 | smell: 4.25 | taste: 4.25 | feel: 4.25 | overall: 4.25

Kinda different for the style. Less sweet and more bitter hoppy to balance. You'd think this was American made with NW hops added to a Belgian dark.

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Photo of ZorPrime
3.89/5  rDev -0.8%
look: 3.5 | smell: 3.75 | taste: 4 | feel: 3.75 | overall: 4

It comes out of the bottle a little bit "gushy". The beer color is dark brown, almost black, however some ruby color on the edge. Nice fine bubbles and creamy head. The aroma shows presence of dark fruit some notes of chocolate. Brown sugar too. The taste is sugary, some dark fruits. In the mouth, very effervescent. Complex. Some dark cacao bitterness on the finish.

Overall, this is a pretty decent beer.
Cheers all!

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Photo of Brutaltruth
4.25/5  rDev +8.4%

A fantastic Belgian dark strong ale poured from a 11.2 oz bottle. Ale pours a nice deep dark
brown with a nice light tan head and great lacing. Nose of Belgian candy sugar, raisins, sweet
fresh bread, hints of licorice, and a dash of cocoa. Taste is phenomenal with a great candy
malt profile on the back and sides with candy sugars reigning supreme with flavors of plums,
raisins, and cocoa leaving an earthy malty sweet aftertaste. Lively mouthfeel makes this one
highly drinkable despite the strong ABV which remains somewhat hidden till the warmth kicks
in. Personally would desire this one on tap, it is simply phenomenal.
A new favorite.

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Photo of JaimeLondon
4.08/5  rDev +4.1%
look: 4.25 | smell: 4.25 | taste: 4 | feel: 4 | overall: 4

Great Strong Dark Ale from Belgium. Of a dark brown color and a big and dense yellowish foam.
Smell is full of chocolate notes, is malty and a bit hoppy. Some bread notes too.
Taste is similar, the maltiness balances quite well the alcoholic level. It's more refreshing that it seems.
Medium body and great carbonation.

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Photo of FLima
3.87/5  rDev -1.3%
look: 4 | smell: 3.75 | taste: 4 | feel: 3.75 | overall: 3.75

Black brownish color with a thick caramel head with good retention and leaving some laces.
Malty aroma with notes of licorice, coffee, cocoa, toffee and at a relative lower degree of dark fruits.
Bold and delicious flavor also quite malty with notes of roasted malts, caramels, cocoa powder, pepper, earthy and grassy hops, coffee, prunes and licorice. Dry aftertaste with a lingering roasted note and some tannin.
Medium body with appropriate carbonation. Alcohol of 9% abv is dangerously hidden. Sticky sensation.
Interesting take of a BSDA with a greater focus on roasted malts.

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Photo of falloutsnow
4/5  rDev +2%
look: 4 | smell: 4 | taste: 4 | feel: 4 | overall: 4

From: Friar Tuck's, Savoy, IL
Date: None on bottle
Glass: Tulip

De Ranke's Noir de Dottignies is a fairly interesting and unique Belgian strong dark ale, with focus on roasted malt flavors more than others in the style. A refreshing take on the style, one that I wouldn't mind drinking again at some point, though a bottle is expensive enough to have this only be an occasional purchase.

Pours ~3cm tall head, made up of beige-colored, small bubbles, yielding a frothy appearance. Retention is above average, the foam lasting several minutes in a gradual decline to a thick ring around the perimeter of the glass. Lacing is good, with a moderate amount of fairly large blotches clinging to the sides of the glass. Body is a dark brown to black color, with light bringing out dark amber-brown hues around the edges of the beer. Carbonation visible along the sides of the glass, high in number and activity.

Aroma of amber Belgian candy sugar (sweet, dark caramel syrup), cocoa, toasted bread crusts, and low raisin and grape ester. In general, the scents are more roasted and less grape ester, prunes and raisins than your typical BSDA, though the latter are still there in a minor capacity. Unique and pleasing.

Overall flavor is of smooth, noticeable roasted cocoa joined to toasted bread, slight grape ester, and mild bitterness. Front of palate tastes amber candy sugar sweetness with mild cocoa, marshmallow, and toasted bread qualities. Mid-palate of creamy, smooth roasted malt that brings in something akin to dark chocolate or cocoa with marshmallow cream, a bit of vanilla, and slight ethanol. Back of palate tastes cocoa, toasted bread, raisins, prunes, grape ester, and yeast. Aftertaste is of bitterness from roasted malts and hops, a bit of bitter cocoa, Belgian candy sugar (sweet, dark caramel syrup), and toasted bread.

Beer is medium-bodied, with carbonation of medium intensity, resulting in a highly foamy mouthfeel that suits the beer fairly well, the style similarly, though perhaps could benefit from a bit of creamy smoothness to encourage slower sipping. Ethanol detectable only as a slight burn on the back of the throat at the close of each sip; in general, fairly well-hidden. Closes dry, with medium-heavy stickiness clinging to the palate.

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Noir De Dottignies from Brouwerij Brasserie De Ranke
Beer rating: 88 out of 100 with 291 ratings