Brewed by Dieu du Ciel
Style: Barley Wine
Montreal, Canada
Serve in Snifter


on tap

Broad Distribution

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RATINGS: 899   WEIGHTED AVG: 3.71/5   SEASONAL: Winter   EST. CALORIES: 306   ABV: 10.2%
This noble winter beer is brown in colour with flaming red highlights. Its taste is delicately sweet and liquor-like with a hint of burnt caramel coming from the malt and a prolonged boiling time. It is a very bitter beer with aromas of hops and alcohol, and flavours reminiscent of red fruit brought by the English-type yeast we use to ferment it. The aftertaste is accentuated by the wonderful flavour of hops. Solstice d’Hiver is brewed only once a year, and is then aged for 4 to 5 months before being sold. This aging process is necessary to achieve an ideal equilibrium between the sharp bitterness and the other flavours in the beer. After aging, it is then sold starting mid-December of each year, until stocks last.

   AROMA 7/10   APPEARANCE 3/5   TASTE 7/10   PALATE 3/5   OVERALL 14/20
sjogro (2495) - The Hague, NETHERLANDS - MAY 27, 2016
Sampled from bottle at THT May. Near clear amber. White head. Sweet caramel malts, boozy. Over medium sweet, medium bitter. Medium body. Low carbonation.

   AROMA 7/10   APPEARANCE 3/5   TASTE 7/10   PALATE 4/5   OVERALL 15/20
Alengrin (4451) - BELGIUM - MAY 22, 2016
Barley wine from this renowned Canadian brewery, shared by Jan. Thin, egg-white, lightly lacing head over a deep warm amberish copper coloured beer, lightly hazy. Aroma of caramel, honey, cognac, cream, tulips, toffee, marmelade, gingerbread, dried flowers, pear, toasted bread. Candied orange sweetness in the mouth but not cloying, some residual white candi sugar balanced by a soft, basic sourishness, soft carbo, vinous and smooth, thick mouthfeel as befits a barley wine, thick caramelly malt sweetness with a softly bittering toasted edge, bit resinous, spicy hop accent in the finish with warming, brandy-like and slightly wry alcohol. Not the most complex or refined barley wine, but certainly a decent and flawless example of the style; yet, seen other experiences with Dieu du Ciel, I cannot help having expected a bit more from this.

   AROMA 7/10   APPEARANCE 4/5   TASTE 7/10   PALATE 4/5   OVERALL 15/20
ryecatcher (1336) - Bridgeport, Chicago, Illinois, USA - MAY 21, 2016
Bottle. Deep amber pour with a creamy off-white head, very nice retention. Nose is dried fruit (prunes, figs, dates), caramel, vanilla, candy sugar, chewy pumpernickel bread. Mouth is medium-full, creamy, relatively sweet but not cloying, balancing bitterness underpinning the malt, chock full of the dried fruit evident in the nose, vanilla toffee toasty bread finish is accompanied by a pleasant warmth from the ABV. Sacre bleu, tabernac!

   AROMA 7/10   APPEARANCE 3/5   TASTE 6/10   PALATE 3/5   OVERALL 13/20
Kauge (1557) - Tallinn, ESTONIA - MAY 15, 2016
Bottle (24.09.2015) at beerbistro in Toronto. Coppery brown/red, translucent, with tiny, scattered off-white head. The nose is candi sugar and toffee, sweet dark fruits. Tastes really full, dark fruit sweet with loads of aniseedy dark toffee (the licorice toffee candies Kalev made when I was a child). The alcohol is not all too well hidden, it’s pretty boozy and harsh even while taking into account it’s 10.2%. Overall... unbalanced, rough, not exactly enjoyable. I imagine it’ll get better as it ages. So far it’s among the most disappointing BW-s I’ve had.

Too fckn bad their (cellar menu listed) 2006 Thomas Hardy was finished and I had to settle with this underachiever...

   AROMA 7/10   APPEARANCE 3/5   TASTE 5/10   PALATE 2/5   OVERALL 11/20
fantti (916) - FINLAND - MAY 11, 2016
Pullo @ Saveur-Biere. Kaatuu snifteriin syvän tummanruskeana, noin sormen paksuisella, melko pysyvällä vaahdolla. Tuoksussa on runsasta marjaista liköörimäisyyttä, paahdetun pähkinäistä maltaisuutta sekä hieman myös makeaa hedelmäisyyttä ja karamellisuutta. Maku on huomattavan karamellinen sekä pähkinäisen maltainen. Hedelmääkin on hieman joukossa, mutta jälkimaku jää tyhjäksi ja tuntuu pelkkää alkoholin poltetta. Suutuntuma on makeahko ja melko viinainen. Britteihin kallellaan oleva barley wine, jossa on aivan liikaa viinaisuutta, jotta olisi nautittava.

   AROMA 7/10   APPEARANCE 3/5   TASTE 6/10   PALATE 3/5   OVERALL 12/20
rondphoto (3971) - Lakeside Park, Kentucky, USA - APR 25, 2016
bottle @ Vino Bellissimo / Lima OH --- Aroma of malt and dried dark fruit. Opaque brown/black with a frothy light brown head, bands of lace. Taste is caramel malt that adds medium carbonation before turning to dark dried fruit and alcohol in a long boozy finish. Doesn’t work as a Barleywine, more as a Dubbel or Tripel. Surprising, because it is the first Dieu de Ciel that hasn’t impressed me.

   AROMA 7/10   APPEARANCE 3/5   TASTE 6/10   PALATE 4/5   OVERALL 13/20
DSG (11505) - Tel Aviv, ISRAEL - MAR 31, 2016
Bottle sample at a tasting at Max’s place. Thanks Tom L. Very deep amber-brown. Aroma of malt, caramel, lots of dark fruits, a bit of alcohol. Sweet flavor, somewhat boozy, with caramel, dark fruits, and a bitter finish. Medium to full-bodied, rounded mouthfeel.

   AROMA 8/10   APPEARANCE 4/5   TASTE 8/10   PALATE 4/5   OVERALL 16/20
BobyFischer (295) - FRANCE - MAR 8, 2016
Brune rubis et délicats reflets écarlates. Nez bien doux, biscuité, épicé, ample et bien développé. En bouche belle attaque alcoolique, douce, biscuit, caramel puis épices et menus houblons.Finale légèrement amérisante et surtout épicée : cannelle, vanille. Pas mon genre préféré mais dans le genre un must d’une grande réussite. Bravo DDC, une des meilleures brasserie au monde.

   AROMA 6/10   APPEARANCE 3/5   TASTE 6/10   PALATE 3/5   OVERALL 13/20
wombat23 (607) - Texas, USA - MAR 5, 2016
Shared 11.5 oz. bottle. Amber pour with a small beige head. Aroma is caramel, sweet malt, and alcohol. Taste is similar, with some dark fruit. Strong malt presence. Alcohol warming finish.

   AROMA 6/10   APPEARANCE 4/5   TASTE 6/10   PALATE 4/5   OVERALL 10/20
darbeer75 (435) - Round Rock, Texas, USA - MAR 5, 2016
Aroma: Fruity and malty with good complexity; Appearance: dark ruby red with thin head that dissipates quickly; Taste: also strongly fruity and malty with some hoppiness underneath; Palate: medium-heavy body with long, sweet finish; Overall: too sweet for me, but decent overall.

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