overall
97
89
style
Brewed by Dieu du Ciel
Style: Barley Wine
Montreal, Canada
Serve in Snifter

bottled
available

on tap
available

Broad Distribution

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RATINGS: 906   WEIGHTED AVG: 3.71/5   SEASONAL: Winter   EST. CALORIES: 306   ABV: 10.2%
COMMERCIAL DESCRIPTION
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.

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BiereLuc's rating

4
   AROMA 7/10   APPEARANCE 4/5   TASTE 8/10   PALATE 4/5   OVERALL 17/20
BiereLuc (1266) - Montréal, Quebec, - FEB 21, 2013
Brune lugubre, reflets rouges, fine mousse. Ça sent le sucre et le houblon. En bouche, on alterne entre les fruits rouges, le caramel et l’amertume qui se réserve pour la finale. Chaque fois que j’ai bu une Solstice d’Hiver au cours des dernières années, ma réaction a toujours été la même : cette bière est trop jeune. Je crois qu’un vieillissement de 2-3 ans pourrait ajouter un peu d’histoire à cette bière qui est encore trop fougueuse. Une vieille âme dans un jeune corps...


4.2
   AROMA 9/10   APPEARANCE 4/5   TASTE 8/10   PALATE 5/5   OVERALL 16/20
kepano (265) - Los Angeles, California, USA - NOV 20, 2016
My first Dieu du Ciel! Finally! After all these years, I am catching up to a brewery I’ve always wanted to sample. Pours a dramatic deep walnut brown with a thin tan head that laces in one fine sheet around the glass. The smell is decadent, yet subtle. Reminiscent of a quadrupel ale, it is full of dark fruits that hide the heat of 10.2% alcohol. Figs, prunes, rich chocolate and caramel, softened by a custardy, vanilla base. There is a beautiful balance to the nose. The complex bouquet of spices and herbs marries together into a single sharp note. As it hits the tip of my tongue, I taste the reassuring flavor of a beer that is of a piece. No surprise, the mouthfeel is as unctuous and delicious as the aroma. The bitterness of roasted coffee brings a welcome sharpness to the mid-palate along with plenty of chocolate, molasses, finishing on an oaky bourbony note. A terrific introduction.

3.9
   AROMA 7/10   APPEARANCE 3/5   TASTE 8/10   PALATE 4/5   OVERALL 17/20
dnstone (2737) - Las Vegas, Nevada, USA - NOV 15, 2016
Deep amber color with an off white head. Light sweet roast and caramelized sugar aroma. Soft bodied with a moderate roast character, and some earthy and burnt sugar notes and a sweet finish. ---Rated via Beer Buddy for iPhone

3.1
   AROMA 7/10   APPEARANCE 3/5   TASTE 6/10   PALATE 3/5   OVERALL 12/20
zvikar (5445) - Ramat Gan, ISRAEL - NOV 5, 2016
Brown, nice head, aroma of chocolate, toffee, fruity, flavor of toffee, fruits, alcohol, medium bodied.

4
   AROMA 9/10   APPEARANCE 4/5   TASTE 9/10   PALATE 4/5   OVERALL 14/20
blackisle (2174) - IJburg, NETHERLANDS - OCT 14, 2016
Bottle 34.1cl. Poured into a tulip glass. Clear deep amber brown, tall creamy beige head, half-way lasting, good lacing; rich aroma, roasted dark malts, dark fruits, caramel, brown sugar, candied orange rind, spicy notes; taste light heavy sweet and medium bitter, malty, roasted caramel, woody, brandy; roasty malty sweetbitter aftertaste, woody and spicy notes; full-bodied, oily texture, soft carbonation; rich and powerfull barley wine.

3.9
   AROMA 8/10   APPEARANCE 4/5   TASTE 8/10   PALATE 4/5   OVERALL 15/20
Prufrockstar (2018) - Cincinnati, Ohio, USA - OCT 2, 2016
Bottle from Dutch’s - half off! Deep ruby pour, short-lived head. Toffee, caramel, light chocolate, a little oxidation, dark fruit. Strong and sweet, but dries out nicely in the end, lightly bitter finish. Full body, velvety texture, soft carbonation. Really nice.

4.3
   AROMA 8/10   APPEARANCE 5/5   TASTE 8/10   PALATE 4/5   OVERALL 18/20
MetalNHopHead (1576) - Lincoln, Nebraska, USA - SEP 24, 2016
This is only my second brush with Dieu du Ciel so far, but it’s pretty clear they make a tasty malt bomb. Solstice D’Hiver pours a clear red-brown. Its nose is boozy and fruity with some notes of wood and char. Flavor is nicely balanced. There’s caramel, fruit, and some hops. It’s syrupy and full-bodied but not as heavy as some Barleywines. As the name suggests, this brew would fit right into the colder months of the year.

3.8
   AROMA 8/10   APPEARANCE 5/5   TASTE 7/10   PALATE 3/5   OVERALL 15/20
HuskerTan (1803) - Kearney, Nebraska, USA - SEP 23, 2016
Bottle. A- Subtle cherry, oak, booze, brown sugars. A- Dark mahogany color, clear liquid, light brown head. T- Oak, cherry, medium bitterness, maple, brown sugars. P- Full body, average texture, average carbonation, complex finish. O- Not as bitter as I expected and only 6 months of age. Overall a nice not overly aggressive representation of the style.

3.5
   AROMA 6/10   APPEARANCE 4/5   TASTE 7/10   PALATE 4/5   OVERALL 14/20
knasputte78 (644) - SWEDEN - AUG 21, 2016
Mörk bärnsten. Spritighet och konjaksfeeling. Inte helt min grej men funkar ändå okej ---Rated via Beer Buddy for iPhone

3.7
   AROMA 8/10   APPEARANCE 4/5   TASTE 7/10   PALATE 4/5   OVERALL 14/20
tderoeck (8420) - Gent, BELGIUM - AUG 19, 2016
15/VIII/16 - 341ml bottle from Geers (Oostakker) @ home - BB: 30/IX/15 (2016-855)

Clear purple brown beer, creamy irregular beige head, pretty stable, bit adhesive. Aroma: malty, caramel, dried fruits, bit metallic. MF: ok carbon, medium to full body. Taste: sweet start, some ripe banana, bitter hops, chocolate, alcohol, malty, banana peel. Aftertaste: dried fruits, bit oxidized, metallic touch, very bitter and unpleasant finish.

3.8
   AROMA 7/10   APPEARANCE 4/5   TASTE 8/10   PALATE 3/5   OVERALL 16/20
Adamsville (239) - Quebec, CANADA - JUL 29, 2016
UPDATED: SEP 16, 2016 Apparence : Brune foncée, presque opaque, carbonatation moyenne, léger col beige foncé, tout de même une bonne rétention.
Nez : Caramel, malt grillé, légers vanille et dattes.
Goût : Entrée de caramel sucré, touches grillée, de raisins secs, de dattes et d’amertume en finale. Une amertume brûlée et légèrement terreuse.
Sensation : Effervescence moyenne, picotement éthylique sur la langue, corps moyen-plus, chaleur moyenne, finale de durée moyenne.
Bref : J’avais toujours bu cette bière jeune et ce, sans prendre de notes. J’avais en tête une bière sucrée, mais surtout très amère. Trop. Débalancée. À la limite d’être agressante. Était-ce une mauvaise perception? Peut-être, mais une année de repos en bouteille lui a fait un grand bien : très bel équilibre entre le malt caramélisé et les houblons, notes grillées, fruitées, terreuses. Un très bon Barleywine. Simple, mais très efficace. Critique? Bizarrement, il manque un peu d’intensité, de corps et de longueur. Comme quoi il faut sacrifier quelque chose en quelque part.


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