From Montreal Quebec’s Brasserie Dieu Du Ciel comes their “Solstice d’hiver” a winter seasonal Barleywine. The beer pours a deep ruby colour with a tan head. The aroma is of malts, dark fruits and a decent floral hops kick. The flavour is of malts, dark fruits, caramel, hops bitterness, earthy and some alcohol warming. The alcohol content comes in at 10.2% as per bottle (website says 9%). I am a big fan of barleywines and this beer is no different in as much as I think it tastes great.
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.
Solstice d’hiver is brewed only once a year, at the end of the summer. It is then aged for a few months in order to attain a perfect balance in taste. Then, it is sold starting mid-December of each year, until stocks last.