Brewed by Brasserie de la Senne
Style: Belgian Strong Ale
Brussels, Belgium


on tap

Broad Distribution

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RATINGS: 246   WEIGHTED AVG: 3.49/5   SEASONAL: Winter   EST. CALORIES: 234   ABV: 7.8%
Production stopped in 2008, resumed in 2011.

   AROMA 5/10   APPEARANCE 4/5   TASTE 7/10   PALATE 3/5   OVERALL 12/20
snowdog140 (58) - Coventry, West Midlands, ENGLAND - MAR 1, 2014
Dark brown/ruby colour with frothy head, not a hugely strong aroma but appealing nonetheless. The taste is a combination of earthy malt of a stout, as well as berries and something that seems suitable for the Christmas season.

   AROMA 6/10   APPEARANCE 4/5   TASTE 7/10   PALATE 3/5   OVERALL 15/20
CanIHave4Beers (3897) - Pouring Bus, Iowa, USA - FEB 27, 2014
Pours an amber color with a big head and nice lacing on the glass.

The aroma holds some stuff, light fruitiness, pencil lead, clay, & earthy hops.

The flavor is entirely more malt forward than anything I’ve come to expect from De La Senne, not that maltiness is an issue, it’s just a surprise. It’s still got a zippy & earthy hop character. It’s got some nice bitterness. The beer has a sort of heavy fruitiness, it’s not bad, it’s just odd. The beer is also very spicy.

   AROMA 7/10   APPEARANCE 3/5   TASTE 7/10   PALATE 3/5   OVERALL 15/20
Leighton (17461) - London, Greater London, ENGLAND - FEB 27, 2014
UPDATED: OCT 5, 2014 Bottle shared at CBC Clerkenwell during the Gunnar Tasting. Thanks to Josh, I believe, for this one. Pours hazy, brown-gold with a creamy head. The nose has nips of spice and dry, toasted bread. Light-medium sweet flavor with mellow nutmeg and more dry bread. Medium bodied with fine carbonation. Toasted bread mostly in the finish with accents of dry, aged spices, faint fruits. OK. (February 2014, Score: 3.4)

Bottle shared in a car with Bruce and Colin. Sourced from Dranken Geers. Vintage 2012. Pours hazy brown with a sturdy, tan foam head. The nose has toasted brown bread, hints of spice and Belgian yeast. Light to medium sweet flavor with mellow spices, some cinnamon, brown bread, light earthy and leafy bitterness. Medium bodied with average carbonation and creamy texture. Earthy, dirty bitter finish with toasted bread, very mild smoke and wintery spices. Nice. (March 2013, Score: 3.5)

   AROMA 9/10   APPEARANCE 3/5   TASTE 9/10   PALATE 4/5   OVERALL 18/20
CharlyBeer (145) - Bruxelles, BELGIUM - FEB 20, 2014
J’ai adoré boire cette bière avec du saucisson de sanglier, enorme! La couleur n’est pas éclatante mais son gout est unique!

   AROMA 6/10   APPEARANCE 4/5   TASTE 7/10   PALATE 4/5   OVERALL 14/20
downender (7679) - Bristol, Gloucestershire, ENGLAND - FEB 6, 2014
Bottle from the Beer Emporium, Bristol. Deep, copper red, with a big and tight, off-white head. Aroma of candy sugar, leafy hops, red berries. Flavour had some solid malts, plenty more fruit, caramel a hint if spice and lingering, bitter finish. A good winter warmer.

   AROMA 6/10   APPEARANCE 4/5   TASTE 7/10   PALATE 4/5   OVERALL 15/20
_angst_ (4309) - Göteborg, SWEDEN - FEB 5, 2014
Bottle bought @ Etre. Pours deep copper with a big frothy and creamy beige head that slowly dissipates while leaving some lacing and trace on the glass. Smell is slightly estery and slightly phenolic with biscuits, unripe pears, lemon zest, black pepper corns, dusty oatmeal flakes, caramelized apples, cloves, orange zest and hints of marzipan. Taste is sweet and slightly spicy with biscuits, caramelized sugar, Christmas fruitcake, red apples, baked pears, allspice, ginger, moist soil, wood and hints of alcohol. Mouthfeel is soft, round, slightly spicy astringent and medium bodied. finish is bitter and spicy with toasted malts, biscuits, apple skins, nutmeg, allspice, ginger, black pepper corns, wood, soil and orange peal. Heavily spicy with a slightly balancing mouthfeel. Quite good...

   AROMA 7/10   APPEARANCE 4/5   TASTE 6/10   PALATE 4/5   OVERALL 14/20
mR_fr0g (8047) - Hertfordshire, ENGLAND - JAN 28, 2014
Bottle share at CBC clerkenwell at the Gunnar Tasting. Red orange coloured pour with a halo of off white head. Aroma is sweetberry , strawberry. Flavour is crisp with a touch of caramel and berry hop. Light spices, Solid bitterness and slight metalic. Tasty enough for a christmas beer.

   AROMA 6/10   APPEARANCE 3/5   TASTE 6/10   PALATE 4/5   OVERALL 13/20
Meilby (10582) - Kristiansand, NORWAY - JAN 22, 2014
Bottle 330ml vintage 2012 @ My parents
Pours dark brown with a off-white head. Aroma has notes of malt, caramel, yeast and hint of christmas spices. Taste is medium sweet and light bitter with a long warm, caramel and yeasty finish. Body is medium to full, texture is oily, carbonation is soft.

   AROMA 9/10   APPEARANCE 4/5   TASTE 9/10   PALATE 4/5   OVERALL 18/20
mike_77 (4928) - Breda, NETHERLANDS - JAN 18, 2014
Dark brown with lasting head. Aroma and flavour have bittersweet roasted malts, caramel and strong dried fruit, especially figs. Finish is pleasantly dry which balances the initial sweetness well.

   AROMA 10/10   APPEARANCE 5/5   TASTE 10/10   PALATE 5/5   OVERALL 20/20
corkyrory66 (1264) - BELGIUM - JAN 17, 2014
Voici un très beau sujet de discussion... D’abord cette bière n’est pas une « belgian ale » mais bien un stout dans le bon style, mais comme ratebeer appelle les stouts hors zone de « foreign stout » voici donc un « foreign stout de Noël »... Ensuite une bière de Noël est souvent assez forte, mais ici nous avons un modeste 7,8 % abv. Enfin l’étiquette n’est pas très adpatée au style des Christmas, avec cette BD de style polar moderne … mais on sait que les temps changent … déjà depuis Dylan … Couleur quasi noire, et brun roux foncé en transparence. Clarté nette, pure. Bulles très fines par centaines au centre, et pourtant dans un grand verre ballon. Mousse café crème qui nappe à 2 mm. Arômes de fruits secs, café, orge, millet, avoine, épeautre, pain complet, pointe de candi brun et épices fleuries. 1ère bouche à la texture soyeuse sur du café moka, du chocolat noir, pain grillé fortement, whisky d’islay. Arrière-bouche pleine, forte, longue avec une pointe fine de tabac. 2ème bouche à l’équilibre superbe sur le malt légèrement torréfié. Arrière-bouche de fruits mûrs, longue. 3ème bouche où on part sur un ensemble plutôt vineux. Arrière-bouche bien tempérée sur du malt/houblon et quelques épices. La longueur donne un début en douceur, puis se renforce. La levure est très belle, profonde, rigoureuse. L’alcool est très bien, juste adéquat pour un stout spécial, et même s’il est faible pour une Christmas, il fait très bien son travail. La finale est très vineuse, avec du fût de vieillissement et du chai des grands crus. Conclusion : un très grand stout, qui même s’il est un « foreign stout », en vaut beaucoup de « non foreign »... Et évidemment pour une bière de Noël, c’est un genre peu commun, mais bien agréable. Il suffit de connaître d’ailleurs les capacités brassicoles de la Senne pour savoir que ce produit sera tout sauf quelconque ….

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