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Belle Royale - Strong Belgian Cherry Ale - Driftwood Brewery

Belle Royale - Strong Belgian Cherry AleBelle Royale - Strong Belgian Cherry Ale

Displayed for educational use only; do not reuse.
BA SCORE
90
outstanding

30 Ratings
THE BROS
-
no score

(send 'em beer!)
Ratings: 30
Reviews: 18
rAvg: 4.13
pDev: 12.83%


Brewed by:
Driftwood Brewery visit their website
British Columbia, Canada

Style | ABV
Fruit / Vegetable Beer |  9.00% ABV

Availability: Limited (brewed once)

Notes/Commercial Description:
This beer is retired; no longer brewed.

A strong Belgian-inspired ale with a 1/2lb of Morello sour cherries in every bottle.

(Beer added by: Graham5161986 on 05-04-2010)
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Ratings: 30 | Reviews: 18 | Show All Ratings:
Photo of mikeyv35
mikeyv35

New York

4.1/5  rDev -0.7%
look: 4 | smell: 4.5 | taste: 4 | feel: 4 | overall: 4

Date: 08/24/2012
Type: 22oz. Bomber
Vintage: 2012
Glass: Southampton Tulip

Very excited to finally sample this long-time Canadian want! A 1/4 pound of sour Morello cherries per bottle according to the description on the bottle. Here we go.

Pours a pink grapefruit in color w/ a skim coat head that left minimal lacing. Aromas of fresh picked cherries, bread, yeast, and mild piney hops. The flavor pretty much matched the nose w/ fresh cherries up front, followed by breadiness and slight acidity, and finishing w/ very mild hop bitterness. Medium bodied and decently lush w/ appropriate carbonation and finishes pretty dry. Pretty drinkable w/ well masked ABV, but unless you are an extreme cherry lover, one glass is enough.

Overall, this is a well put together cherry strong ale. To me it is a better version of Kasteel Rouge, w/ fresh cherry taste versus a syrupy adjunct flavor. Also, the cherry flavor is there, but it does not overwhelm the beer.

Serving type: bottle

08-24-2012 07:06:17 | More by mikeyv35
Photo of papat444
papat444

Quebec (Canada)

3.6/5  rDev -12.8%
look: 3.5 | smell: 4 | taste: 3.5 | feel: 3.5 | overall: 3.5

Part of a gift from my aunt that my brother brought back on a trip last Sept. to their place in Surrey.

Appearance: A light rosé color amid a light golden body. Barely 2 fingers form before dissolving to nothin with no lacing.

Smell: Sour cherries with a strong malt profile.

Taste: Cherries are there, tart but not overly so. Some wood and as it warms a slight sweetness to the cherries reminiscent ever so slightly of maraschino cherries. I found though that the staying power of the flavor was short lived.

Mouthfeel: Good carbonation makes this feel alive with a bit of dry tartness to round things off.

Overall: I'm a bit disappointed. I was expecting the cherries to be more present yet they seemed restrained. Still good but not great.

Serving type: bottle

02-02-2012 12:31:18 | More by papat444
Photo of Sammy
Sammy

Ontario (Canada)

3.78/5  rDev -8.5%
look: 4 | smell: 4 | taste: 3.5 | feel: 4 | overall: 4

The search was for tartness, being cherries and all. What I liked was it wasn't too sweet. Bottom line: Rather neutral, not bitter or sourness or too sweet, but also somewhat dull. I liked the yeasty Belgians, and secondary cherry flavour, so drank the bottle. Good as a fruit beer.
Thanks Derek.

Serving type: bottle

01-01-2012 01:27:43 | More by Sammy
Photo of Torontoblue
Torontoblue

Alberta (Canada)

3.78/5  rDev -8.5%
look: 4 | smell: 4 | taste: 3.5 | feel: 4 | overall: 4

Pours an attractive pinkish-amber into a large Duvel tulip glass Absolutely zero head, not even a lacing. Nicely carbonated with a constant rising stream of small bubbles.

Nice cherry on the nose, with a hint of sweet tartness, spice & tropical fruits.

Cherry flavour is balanced and well integrated. Hints of spices, bready malt and an underlying tropical fruitiness. Nice & slightly bitter.

Body is surprisingly thin for a 9% beer.... bubbly with a nice dry, bitter finish.

Serving type: bottle

09-18-2011 22:52:10 | More by Torontoblue
Photo of wordemupg
wordemupg

Alberta (Canada)

4.35/5  rDev +5.3%
look: 3.5 | smell: 4 | taste: 4.5 | feel: 4.5 | overall: 4.5

650ml bottle poured into tulip 1/9/11

A looks pink on the table but a fair bit of copper when held to the light, just a short lived fizzy foam that leaves no lace

S hoppy cereal, lots of yeast and cherry and a little raspberry and honey

T what I smell but with a little kick, almost tastes like a cherry infused Duvel, fairly dry and just a little booze but not the 9% I see on the label. malty but the hops haven't faded yet, a little tart but very tasty

M thick and well carbonated, just a little heat but I don't mind, leaves a little behind in your mouth and the flavors linger forever as a result

O pretty easy to drink for a tart 9% cherry ale that's for sure, I like the yeasty flavors mixing up with the grainy, fruity goodness.

Thanks EskimoDave for hooking me up, a pretty special brew that's worth looking for. I'm curious to how this one would age but I'm just happy I got to try it once.

Serving type: bottle

09-01-2011 21:57:04 | More by wordemupg
Photo of Rutager
Rutager

British Columbia (Canada)

4.11/5  rDev -0.5%
look: 3.5 | smell: 4 | taste: 4.25 | feel: 4.25 | overall: 4

Reviewed 08-02-2011:

Appearance. Pours a nearly clear peach with barely a skim of head. Little evidence of any carbonation.

Smell. Light toasty grains and yeast funk. A little sour fruit.

Taste. Again, toasty light grains and yeast. The tart cherries really come through in the end. Alcohol barely present.

Mouthfeel. Medium-light body with smooth, slightly more than light carbonation. Just a little alcohol warmth.

Overall. Another nice one from Driftwood. Drinks great right now with that full cherry flavour.

Serving type: bottle

08-02-2011 03:12:13 | More by Rutager
Photo of ericj551
ericj551

Alberta (Canada)

3.68/5  rDev -10.9%
look: 4 | smell: 4.5 | taste: 3.5 | feel: 3 | overall: 3.5

Belle Royale pours a slightly pink reddish orange with a pink head that fades immediately. The aroma is dry, phenolic, yeasty character with some tart cherries. A bit of the yeasty character comes up front in the flavor, with tons of tart cherries quickly over taking it. The tart cherry flavor rides into the finish, with some light malt popping up. The tartness lingers along with the cherries. The mouthfeel is a bit thin, but the alcohol is well hidden.

Serving type: bottle

07-24-2011 07:00:02 | More by ericj551
Photo of DaftCaskBC
DaftCaskBC

British Columbia (Canada)

4.05/5  rDev -1.9%
look: 4 | smell: 4 | taste: 4 | feel: 4.5 | overall: 4

A: Amber with excellent clarity.

S: Boozy with a slight hint of cherries.

T: Sour cherry, yeasty, with a slightly bitter aftertaste.

M: Medium thickness with a medium to high level of fine carbonation.

O: A nice and refreshing North American interpretation of a Belgian Ale.

Serving type: cask

06-29-2011 05:26:04 | More by DaftCaskBC
Photo of BDTyre
BDTyre

British Columbia (Canada)

4.18/5  rDev +1.2%
look: 4.5 | smell: 4.5 | taste: 4 | feel: 4.5 | overall: 4

Great beer from Driftwood. Pinky gold with very little head. No lace even clings to the glass. Malty, cherry smell. Brown sugar, bread even a bit of milk chocolate. Sweet, with a bit of sourness to it.

Slightly sour cherry taste, but very pleasant. Light malts, very light hop profile. Fruit, sugar and a very light, pleasing alcohol profile. The 9% ABV is hidden quite well. Dry, slightly bitter finish. An awesome dessert beer, really tasty. Driftwood once again delivers.

Serving type: bottle

06-29-2011 04:15:44 | More by BDTyre
Photo of Derek
Derek

British Columbia (Canada)

4.03/5  rDev -2.4%
look: 3.5 | smell: 4 | taste: 4 | feel: 4.5 | overall: 4

Pinkish-orange pour has zero head. Well-carbonated and the bubbles keep climbing.

Nice cherry on the nose, slightly tart & sweet; light phenolic spicing with hints of pineapple, mango and papaya.

The cherry flavour isn't overbearing and it's well-integrated. Nice phenolic spicing with hints of tropical fruit and underlying biscuity malt. Modest bitterness; slight alcohol warmth.

Well-attenuated, body is surprisingly thin for its weight.... bubbly with a slight drying alcohol finish.

Incredibly good drinker for its weight. Well-crafted.

Serving type: bottle

06-25-2011 03:08:30 | More by Derek
Photo of cycnet
cycnet

British Columbia (Canada)

4.85/5  rDev +17.4%
look: 5 | smell: 4.5 | taste: 5 | feel: 4.5 | overall: 5

A bright, clean mouthfeel with exceptional sour cherry flavour, nothing cloying or sweet about this, makes Belle Royale an amazing beer worth seeking out.

Perfect for a patio on a hot summer's day, this beer packs a huge 9% punch without tasting heavy or too strong.

Driftwood has done an amazing job with this one, once again.

Serving type: bottle

06-24-2011 00:46:01 | More by cycnet
Photo of bobsy
bobsy

Ontario (Canada)

4.2/5  rDev +1.7%
look: 4 | smell: 4.5 | taste: 4 | feel: 4 | overall: 4.5

Pours a light raspberry with a small white head that left a few lace spots as it dropped to a fine film. Clean cherry nose, with a backing of grain, some belgian yeast and a touch of sourness. I'd concur with Eric and say this is as close to a tripel brewed with sour cherries as you can get. There's certainly a dry graininess, and the spicy Belgian yeast in the finish, but there's also a lightly sour cherry blast in the middle, which makes it one of the better fruit beers I've had. Smooth body and carbonation add to the drinkability of this one and make for a pleasing experience.

Huge thanks to Eric for sharing this one. It came into our split with an A+ rating, and with Driftwood I'm willing to believe that. While it failed to live up to the hype, it did make for a special beer, and I'd happily recommend this to anyone.

Serving type: bottle

11-09-2010 20:52:43 | More by bobsy
Photo of ritzkiss
ritzkiss

Ontario (Canada)

4.3/5  rDev +4.1%
look: 4 | smell: 4.5 | taste: 4 | feel: 4 | overall: 5

650ml bottle from the generous EskimoDave, thanks for finding this want for me!

Pours a light pink, almost salmon colored with a finger of head, dies down to a placid pool.

Interesting beer, my guess at it is a tripel with sour cherries. Initial light sourness, light fruitiness that wavers between cherries and fruit punch, light sweetness balanced by a light tartness and a pleasant pinch in the cheeks. As it warms, the graininess and esters I equate with a tripel. Drinks really really smooth for its weight. Not as sour as I might want but a nice easy drinker that is clearly well crafted. I would gladly drink this again. Thanks Dave!

Serving type: bottle

11-01-2010 05:01:54 | More by ritzkiss
Photo of canucklehead
canucklehead

British Columbia (Canada)

4.72/5  rDev +14.3%
look: 4.5 | smell: 4.5 | taste: 5 | feel: 4.5 | overall: 4.5

I have missed the availability of Unibroues Quelque Choise since it was a fantastic cherry beer but Driftwood has created a worthy successor in Belle Royale. Pours light pink and kinda cloudy with a lovely cherry nose. The beer is so restrained in the cherry taste that is revels in the slight sourness against the belgian yeasts. Complex and incredibly drinkable this is one of my favourite BC beers of the year

Serving type: bottle

09-08-2010 01:39:10 | More by canucklehead
Photo of pontcanna
pontcanna

British Columbia (Canada)

4.88/5  rDev +18.2%
look: 4.5 | smell: 4.5 | taste: 5 | feel: 5 | overall: 5

This is an outstanding beer and I can't wait until they do a new version. Completely addictive and not at all cloying. This is not a fizzy-pop cherry ale, it's dry and more-ish even at 9%. I hope that one day they will do a truly sour version of this brew. Wish I had hidden away a few bottles for the future, but I lacked the willpower. A triumph from a local brewery that goes from strength to strength.

Serving type: bottle

07-20-2010 06:24:03 | More by pontcanna
Photo of pugdogbeer
pugdogbeer

British Columbia (Canada)

4.03/5  rDev -2.4%
look: 4.5 | smell: 4 | taste: 4 | feel: 4 | overall: 4

Poured the colour of a hazy strawberry lemonage with a soft head. What a beautiful sight.

The taste of the cherries is not sweet, rather it is a sour cherry with the Belgian yeast adding a slight spiced undertone.

This tasted very much like a North American Begian beer. If you like sour cherries, Belgian style beer and a lot of alcohol, then you will love this as it is true to style.

At 9% ABV, this is not for the faint hearted - a bottle best shared or savoured slowly. Although having said that the alcohol was not overly noticeable, rather just adding to a big tasting beer.

I drink one bottle very fresh and have put aside a couple of additional bottles for tasting at a later date as I suspect the taste may mature. I found that with other Driftwood beer specialties.

Serving type: bottle

05-10-2010 15:14:49 | More by pugdogbeer
Photo of Hornet2003
Hornet2003

British Columbia (Canada)

4.3/5  rDev +4.1%
look: 4.5 | smell: 4 | taste: 4.5 | feel: 4.5 | overall: 4

Appearance: Must...think...of...word...other....than....Salmon!! We'll call it cranberry-lemonade. Some cloudiness when the yeast gets mixed in. Minimalist head. No lacing but those sexy little Belgian yeast clumps that float on the top.

Smell: I got a very nostalgic whiff of Belgian yeast and sugar. The cherries aren't as obvious in the smell, but there is a subtle fruitiness to it.

Taste: Frickin' fantastic! Sweet and tart at the same time. The Belgian notes are so floral and aromatic, and then the cherries come through after a brief moment. They almost seemed complemented by a rose-ish taste as well. Not sure if the sweetness comes from the alcohol, but there was no apparent alcohol taste.

Mouthfeel: Quite enjoyable to drink. Not over-carbonated like some of the Belgians. Doesn't turn into pop as it warms. Smooth drinking.

Drinkability: I had no problem finishing this one off. The 9% alc/vol does hit pretty hard and the ease of drinking makes it one that you're almost surely going to drink faster than you should.

Overall: Not sure if there should be a separate category for fruit-Belgians as they seem to be a lot more powerful than say an apricot Hefe. But whatever... This was such a pleasure to drink. Not too dry, but most importantly, not a bottle of soda either.

Paired this beer with a grilled seafood salad(scallops/shrimp)-I couldn't imagine a better accompaniment.

Serving type: bottle

05-09-2010 18:46:44 | More by Hornet2003
Photo of Graham5161986
Graham5161986

British Columbia (Canada)

4.58/5  rDev +10.9%
look: 4.5 | smell: 4.5 | taste: 5 | feel: 4 | overall: 4

Wow, this new beer from Driftwood pours a beautiful salmon orange, pink colour with a 1 finger, bright white head that reduces to a thin film and leaves some traces of lacing on my snifter.

Smells is of classic Belgian candied dark fruit malts but brightened up with nice notes of cherries, apples and yeast which make for a very inviting nose.

Taste is of bright, lightly candied fruit with a very pleasant sweet and sour profile from the Morello cherries. I get some nice grapefruit-y citrus notes coming through mid sip as well. The finish is, again, touched with sweet and sour cherry flavour and a light alcohol warmth that brings this beer to the next level. Not only that but this beer has a super long lingering finish highlighted by light fruity notes that dance on the palate. Now that it has warmed a bit, the grapefruit notes have really come to the fore on the finish! Quite spectacular really.

Mouthfeel is medium bodied and well carbonated while not being overrun by the latter. The finish is slightly oily but predominantly clean and crisp with a slightly spicy character as well. Quite refreshing for such a high ABV beer.

Drinkability-wise, I think this beer, despite its high ABV, does very well. It's such a pleasure to sip. Exploring all the flavours and aromas involved makes it a real treat. I could see myself having a couple of these but I think they'd creep up on me!

Big props to everyone at Driftwood brewing for yet another stunning ale. Cheers!

Serving type: bottle

05-04-2010 02:58:18 | More by Graham5161986
Belle Royale - Strong Belgian Cherry Ale from Driftwood Brewery
90 out of 100 based on 30 ratings.