Home > Belgian Strong Ale > Chouffe N’Ice (320 of 1001)

Chouffe N’Ice (320 of 1001)

Rating: 4.05

A winter seasonal from the d’Achouffe brewery now and one that I’ve held on to for over a year now after I picked it up in December of 2014 from Good Spirits Co. in Glasgow with a view of drinking it over the Christmas period that year. Obviously that’s something that I never got round to doing but luckily the beer was able to keep until this year and now I’m able to mark it off the 1001 beers list. This one will be my third beer from the brewery and follows on from their La Chouffe and Mc Chouffe offerings, both of which were beers that featured on the 1001 beers list with the Mc Chouffe coming out as the better beer in my opinion. N’Ice Chouffe is actually a beer that I’ve been looking forward to and would likely have tried before now had it not been a winter seasonal, it just wouldn’t have been the same trying it in July so I’ve held out until now and hopefully it will prove to have been worth the wait. The beer itself is usually available from early December each year until stocks run out and despite the name, it’s not a proper ice beer as the alcohol isn’t concentrated through freezing but it is the strongest of the regular beers that the brewery produces and it should definitely pack a punch; I can’t wait to try it.

N'Ice Chouffe

Appearance (4/5): This one poured quite a deep and rich looking mahogany colour with some red tinges showing and was completed with a half centimetre tall, foamy head that was a light tan colour and showed a little more build up around the edges of the glass. Retention of the head was quite good with is holding up well and leaving a little lacing on the sides of the glass too with only a slight reduction in size towards the centre.
Aroma (8/10): This one wasn’t quite as strong on the nose as I’d expected considering the strength of the beer, at least initially anyway but some rich malts and dark fruits did come through early on to open things up; most notably some dates, plums and figs. There was plenty of sugars coming through as well and adding to the sweetness before a few hints of yeast showed up. Despite not being overly strong, the beer was quite a complex one on the nose with some rich chocolate running through it and the odd bit of vanilla making an appearance too but the alcohol seemed well-hidden on the nose at least.
Taste (8/10): The taste of this beer matches the nose well with some pleasant dark fruits and sweetness kicking things off alongside some sugars. The dates, figs and plums from the nose all made an appearance, as did some raisins and a few bread malts before a background yeast, vanilla and chocolate taste seen things out.
Palate (4/5): Quite a rich and complex beer on the palate, even slightly creamy with a medium to full body and a nice sweetness running through the centre. The beer was strong-tasting and finely carbonated with it going down quite easily despite the strength and giving a nice warming and subtly boozy finish.

Overall (17/20): This one was another really enjoyable Chouffe beer and an excellent Christmas time beer with lots of complex flavours shinning through on top of a warming, boozy palate that came with a nice kick at the end. The beer was not quite as pronounced on the nose as I’d been expecting but thankfully this didn’t carry over to the taste with some rich malts and dark fruits dominating proceedings. Despite being an excellent beer and one that I really enjoyed, I’m not sure it is one that I’m likely to go back to considering the strength and limited availability of it but it is certainly one worth trying.

Brewed In: Achouffe, Belgium
Brewery: Brasserie d’Achouffe
First Brewed: 1998
Type: Belgian Strong Dark Ale
Abv: 10.0%
Serving: Bottle (330ml)
Purchased: Good Spirits Co. (Glasgow)
Price: £4.60

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  1. January 12, 2016 at 08:55

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