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


on tap

Broad Distribution

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RATINGS: 810   WEIGHTED AVG: 3.71   SEASONAL: Winter   EST. CALORIES: 306   ABV: 10.2%
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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.

JohnQPublic's rating

   AROMA 8/10   APPEARANCE 4/5   TASTE 9/10   PALATE 4/5   OVERALL 14/20
JohnQPublic (387) - Brooklyn, New York, USA - MAR 15, 2009
Pours a dark reddish-brown, with a healthy if quickly dissipating bone-white head. Nose is prickly malt - dark, toasty bordering on roasty with a solid presence of cool hops that really feel like glacier to me. To be honest, I have a huge soft spot for what I tasted as glacier hops, which is why I was totally drawn in by this. Delicious. Taste backs it up. Malt body is dark, integrated into the cool, minty, prickly hop note. A bit toasty with hints of roasty caramel sweetness, bit of cocoa, but all completely intertwined with the minty, cool, prickly hops. Like a billion microscopic, super-cooled needles covered in a toasty caramel imbedding themselves into your tongue. Interesting, and in my eyes, delicious. I could drink this a lot if fresh. Yum. Fluffy carbonation that sits just on the border of fizzy, and really does a nice job of complementing the hops note. Nicely put together beer.

   AROMA 7/10   APPEARANCE 3/5   TASTE 7/10   PALATE 3/5   OVERALL 15/20
Scopey (7221) - Croydon, Greater London, ENGLAND - NOV 22, 2014
Keg at BD CJ. It pours deep brown with a decent beige head. The nose is sweet, juicy, raisin, date, sultana, mild spice, earth, fruit cake and candy cane. The taste is bitter, spicy, sweet, wood, leather, raisin, date, earth, dirt, booze, toast and burnt cake with a drying finish. Full body and fine carbonation. Decent, if a bit dry for the style.

   AROMA 8/10   APPEARANCE 4/5   TASTE 9/10   PALATE 5/5   OVERALL 17/20
dougefreezy (44) - Bradenton, Florida, USA - NOV 17, 2014
Pours dark brown, no head. Strong boozy aroma, caramel, figs. Tastes real boozy, but doesnt last long as the hoppyness takes over. Overall real nice, balanced.

   AROMA 6/10   APPEARANCE 3/5   TASTE 6/10   PALATE 3/5   OVERALL 9/20
Leini (889) - SWEDEN - NOV 10, 2014
Sample at a local tasting event. Hazy mahogany body with no head to speak of. Starts of sweet with sugars and figs, finishing off dry, with alcohol.

   AROMA 8/10   APPEARANCE 5/5   TASTE 8/10   PALATE 5/5   OVERALL 15/20
hman43 (388) - Pinehurst, North Carolina, USA - NOV 7, 2014
It pours a cloud brown with little head. What little head there is does manage to produce a little lacing. It has a strong smell of molasses and malts. There are hints of caramel as well. The taste is sweet with caramel being notice with the alcohol. It does have a pleasant, sharp bitterness to it and the natural warming effect on the way down.

   AROMA 6/10   APPEARANCE 4/5   TASTE 7/10   PALATE 4/5   OVERALL 14/20
rollerton (80) - SWEDEN - NOV 1, 2014
Bottle from SB. Pours almost no head. Aroma is very malty. Taste is complex, with raisins. A very good barley wine, it is easy to drink despite the ABV.

   AROMA 6/10   APPEARANCE 4/5   TASTE 9/10   PALATE 4/5   OVERALL 17/20
ericdevin (874) - Eugene, Oregon, USA - OCT 28, 2014
Bottle from Corvallis Brew Supply, Corvallis. Pours a medium dark brown, little bit of tan head, looks like cola. Aroma cherries, figs, caramel. Body thin and sharp, finish is huge and sticky, candi sugar, caramel, dried fruit, just a hint of booze, with very little warming. Tremendous, really.

   AROMA 6/10   APPEARANCE 4/5   TASTE 6/10   PALATE 4/5   OVERALL 16/20
Zakoon (85) - Copenhagen, DENMARK - OCT 25, 2014
33cl bottle @ home. Pours murky dark brown with a tiny beige head. Aroma is caramel malt, dark fruits, alcohol, candy sugar and some oak. Flavour is quite bitter and a little sweet, the alcohol has a bite and there’s a lot of caramel and raisins .Full body, medium carbonation and a boozy and dark fruity finish.

   AROMA 8/10   APPEARANCE 4/5   TASTE 7/10   PALATE 4/5   OVERALL 14/20
Bov (9717) - Bienne, SWITZERLAND - OCT 16, 2014
from Mise en Bière - murky dark ruby-brown beer with a chaotic foam left; aroma of plums, candied caramel and cherries; full-bodied and solidly sweet, some harsh and earthy bitterness lasting in a long aftertaste of ripe red fruits, burning alcohol and caramel

   AROMA 7/10   APPEARANCE 4/5   TASTE 9/10   PALATE 4/5   OVERALL 14/20
eduardovl (929) - SWITZERLAND - OCT 14, 2014
341ml bottle served in a Duvel tulip glass. A: Pours a dark amber nutty color forming a big creamy, fluffy, thin bubbled and soapy beige head. Good retention and tons of lingering and molasses lacings left in the glass. A thin layer remains for long time on the top S: Caramel bomb in the nose. Candy sugar, dark fruits, caramel malts, roasted malts and flowery hops. A bit of alcohol can be felt in the end T: Sweet upfront. Intense taste of caramel. Strong notes of caramel and roasted malts. Strong notes of dark fruits, mainly raisins and grapes. Quite bitter end. Actually, it’s quite hoppy and bitter to a barleywine. Great bittersweet balance M: Heavy and molasses body. Medium carbonation and a fruity and bittersweet aftertaste O: Good drinkability. Nice American Barleywine. Another good surprise from Brasserie Dieu Du Ciel [ BA Review @ 7/27/2013 ]

   AROMA 8/10   APPEARANCE 4/5   TASTE 8/10   PALATE 4/5   OVERALL 16/20
Darkmagus82 (1786) - - OCT 14, 2014
Transfer from BA review on 4-10-14- Poured from bottle into a snifter Appearance – The beer pours a copper color with a finger of tan colored head. The head has a light level of retention, fading to leave a light level of streaky lace on the sides of the glass. Smell – The aroma of the beer is heaviest of a caramel smell mixed with some aromas of caramel molasses and some dark fruits of fig and raisin. Along with these smells are some nice rum like aromas as well as a bit of a spice smell of licorice. Some lighter hop aromas of a pine nature mix with the rest as well as a little bit of a chocolate smell. Taste – The taste with hints of chocolate mixed with a moderately strong flavor of caramel and brown sugar. Some darker fruits are present right from the start with some cherry, plum and raisin as well as some more brown bread flavors. Some booziness comes to the tongue toward the middle of the taste but remains art a relatively constant level never really overpowering the malt and the sweet taste of the brew like in many barley wines. All the while a nice moderately strong pine and earthy hop flavor come to the tongue balancing the sweet rather nicely. The chocolate flavors fade out from the taste at this point with a light amount of a almost tannin like flavor coming to the tongue at the very end, mixing with the rest of the flavors to leave a nicely blended sweet and malty flavor on the tongue. Mouthfeel – The body of the beer is on the slightly thicker and creamier side with a carbonation level that is on the lower side. While not quite as thick and chewy as I would have liked overall the thickness and lower carbonation were rather nice for the flavor and style of the brew making for a rather enjoyable sipper Overall – A rather nice drinking barley wine. It is big in flavor without being both too dry and boozy or too overly sweet. A nice easier drinking one.

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