De Dolle Oerbier | Brouwerij De Dolle Brouwers

459 Reviews
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De Dolle OerbierDe Dolle Oerbier

Brewed by:
Brouwerij De Dolle Brouwers
Belgium | website

Style: Belgian Strong Dark Ale

Alcohol by volume (ABV): 9.50%

Availability: Year-round

Notes / Commercial Description:
No notes at this time.

Added by BeerAdvocate on 03-23-2001

User Reviews
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Reviews: 459 | Ratings: 936
Photo of Sammy
3.43/5  rDev -17.3%
look: 4 | smell: 3.5 | taste: 3.5 | feel: 3.5 | overall: 3

A fairly average beer, and one I could not finish. It went along with dinner, but maybe its the coriander and burnt toffee and orange and melon, pepper, usually a potent turnoff for my sensitive palate. Very much like a brown ale to me, and would be slightly above average if that's what it is.

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Photo of horndecker
4.75/5  rDev +14.5%
look: 4.5 | smell: 4.5 | taste: 5 | feel: 5 | overall: 4.5

A luminous honey walnut hue, with a fine tan head which flares with a fast flush of foam (sorry), then fades. A fine haze covers the beer to the bitter end.
The aromas are melon (?), apple, damp earth, bread, toffee. As it warms there is the smell of chocolate over apples. Unusual, but very nice.
The taste is a big syrupy sweet malt with a slight bitterness hiding behind. A spicy tingle of alcohol and esters warms the back of your throat. Then raisins and a dusty hint of cocoa powder. Caramel comes to mind, as does chocolate milk. But it's not just a syrupy sweet candy bar. There is subtlety and depth. Dark flavors float underneath, and the beer changes a great deal as it warms.
In the mouth it's smooth and luscious. (I love this beer) A huge ball of foam gathers with every sip. De Dolle can do no wrong.

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Photo of Toddv29424
4.35/5  rDev +4.8%
look: 4 | smell: 4 | taste: 4.5 | feel: 4.5 | overall: 4.5

This beer was recommended to me by my favorite beer supplier, and he said "this brewery can do nothing wrong."

Although this is not my favorite type of beer, I can definitely see the merits in it, and understand why is has such a high rating. Pours a deep brown-red color with a minimal head. Smell is very pungent, although of what is hard to say... there are definitely some fruits in there, especially apricots and peaches. The taste is the same way, with a deluge of flavor making it hard to clearly point out tastes. Much different than other beers from this brewery, which tend to take more time with their taste. If it had to be described, the taste is like the smell... fruity, with a good amount of sugar and sweets joined in.

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Photo of paterlodie
4.29/5  rDev +3.4%
look: 4 | smell: 5 | taste: 4 | feel: 4.5 | overall: 4

This one poors in with good yellowbrown head and a darkbrown beercolor with lots of particles in it giving it a yellow mist. Smell is of the best I ever had. Very much fruityness from orange/pear notes and that with a caramellic malt; just magnificent.
Taste is complex a full to making you enjoy at least 10-15 seconds from every sip. Starting with maltyness, litle sweet carramel floating into alcohol that warms before going to a clean but heavy bitterness. Great brew that most of the time is just splendid to me.

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Photo of blitheringidiot
3.98/5  rDev -4.1%
look: 4.5 | smell: 4 | taste: 4 | feel: 3.5 | overall: 4

Dark mahogany pour with a sticky frothy beige 1/2" head cap, thin beading carbonation bubbles rise up and sticky lace in the tulip.

Aromas of a curous nature...creamy sweet and organic.

Attacking malt hard candy lollipop but the good kind, not the crappy ones that your dentist gives out. As this warms it becomes hot in the awl-kee-hawl dept. Rock candy lip smacker rootbeer. Lingering aftertatste.

Golden smoothness feel. Frothy if it sits for a second.

Last swigs: Butered pancakes with maple syrup. Deliciously sweet sugar hot. Enjoyed at TRIA for $8 a little 11.2 oz bottle, 33 cL. The highlight of this brew is the appearance and the smooth character.

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Photo of guinnessman
4.57/5  rDev +10.1%
look: 4.5 | smell: 5 | taste: 4.5 | feel: 4 | overall: 4.5

this beer pours with a wonderful head that retains well. aroma of cherries, raisons and alcohol. the beer looks as good as it tastes with a ruby huge. mouth feel is grainy but smooth. washed over and coats the tongue. leaves a great aftertaste of fruit. Also, at first it seams like the alcohol is going to overpower but it is quickly halted by the other flavors of the beer.

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Photo of GreenCard
3.84/5  rDev -7.5%
look: 3 | smell: 4 | taste: 4 | feel: 4 | overall: 3.5

Early 2004 bottling...

Appearance: ruddy brown with reddish highlights, somewhat hazy, poor head development (i.e.- hardly any)

Aroma: sweet alcohol, biscuity maltiness, rum cake, oak, preserved cherries, pineapple, slight sherry-like oxidation

Flavor: confectionary sweetness (an overcooked fairground caramel?), sherry, zesty alcohol, big spicy phenols, dark mesquite honey, finishes semisweet with a caramelly/malty aftertaste

Mouthfeel: fullish body, pin-pricks of carbonation, lots of alcohol warmth

Other comments: This bottle was from a case I bought at the brewery in May 2004. It has aged nicely so far. The head on this sample was pretty disappointing though, but I've had this beer before when there was copious amounts of foam. A testament to the variability of De Dolle's beers. That being said, I've never had a bad one. On the cap is printed "10% < MAO6", whatever that means.

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Photo of waughbrew
4.68/5  rDev +12.8%
look: 5 | smell: 4.5 | taste: 4.5 | feel: 5 | overall: 5

The liquid is halfway between the inside meat of a plum and mahogany. Definitely lighter in color than I think of it being. Swirling bubbles and small dark chunks of sediment. Huge perfect head with heavy lacing. Smells of pepper, anise, raisin, and alcohol. Flavor is smooth dark caramel with its sweetness balanced well by not the hop bitterness really, but the spiciness. Warms the mouth like a wine, and seems a little higher than the 7.5% listed. Thick-bodied but highly carbonated too, so together it forms a perfect feel. So damn polished and smooth, head and shoulders above most other Belgians. Glory be giv'n.

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Photo of Dukeofearl
3.95/5  rDev -4.8%
look: 3.5 | smell: 3.5 | taste: 4.5 | feel: 4 | overall: 3.5

Presentation: 11.2 oz bottle with red & black label with the De Dolle yellow man

Appearance: A semi-cloudy tea brown color with a very thin head that barely covers the beer. Not all that impressive.

Aroma: Lightly sweet malty with toffee and caramel. Earthiness too. Pleasant enough, but doesn’t have that wow factor.

Flavor: Honey, sweet mixed with a peppery spiciness and the alcohol at the end (which is usually too much for me) actually fits the flavor profile.
Mouthfeel: Heavy, rich, syrupy. Very nice in the winter time, not sure it would be as exciting when it’s hot out.

Drinkability: This is a once in a while beer.

Overall: I really like this. The first time or two, it didn’t grab me. Reminds me of a lighter, less spiced version of the Stille Nacht.

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Photo of Phyl21ca
4.57/5  rDev +10.1%
look: 4 | smell: 4.5 | taste: 5 | feel: 4.5 | overall: 4

Bottle: Poured a dark color ale with a huge bubbly dark head with average retention. Aroma is quite complex and includes some smoky notes with some alcohol (scotch?). From what I could gather from the taste there is quite a mix in there: I can only describe this as a mix between a scotch ale (Mchouffe) with some smoke malt thrown in there. Alcohol is not easily detectable but can be felt on the tongue. Very different from what I’ve tasted before, I’m curious to try the other bottle in my cellar.

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Photo of NEhophead
4.24/5  rDev +2.2%
look: 3.5 | smell: 4.5 | taste: 4.5 | feel: 3.5 | overall: 4

11.6 fl oz brown bottle.

Fizzy, slightly tan head with not much retention. A bit of thin lacing with average durability. Murky brown in color with lots of sediment floating around.

Milk chocolate; ripe cherry. Candied sweet maltiness along with a moderate tartness: cherry, grape, sour apple.

Moderate tartness at first: cherry and apple. This is soon joined with a creamy coffee, caramel, and chocolate wave. A big burst of carbonation followed by a sharp sour quality. The aftertaste is again mellow caramel and chocolate. Complex in flavor and wonderfully balanced.

Medium bodied; very fizzy on the palate but well balanced.

A lot of flavors going on here. Although the abv% is well hidden in terms of flavor, it sneaks up on you if you're not paying attention. A solid version of the style and definitely worth a try. One I will be revisiting in the future.

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Photo of Gusler
3.54/5  rDev -14.7%
look: 3 | smell: 4 | taste: 3.5 | feel: 3 | overall: 3.5

The beer upon its pour from the 330ml brown bottle sets in the glass a muddy brown color with the head bubbly and off white in color, the size minimal, lace is patchy. Nose is spicy over ripe apples with a tart sweetness, start is sweet and sour, the top light in feel. Finish is mildly acidic with the hops benign, sour aftertaste with hints of alcohol, a belly warmer for sure.

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Photo of crookedhalo
4.55/5  rDev +9.6%
look: 4 | smell: 4 | taste: 5 | feel: 4.5 | overall: 4.5

33 cl bottle, no freshness dating. Pours a clear copper color with a bubbly light beige head. Notes of muted dark malts and vinous, citrus rind; a bit perfumy and lightly hoppy, too. Spicing seems evident, although not likely so, probably a unique yeast strain. First sip is caramel-like; dark cherry-malty and smooth with a bit of botanical astringency and faint sourness in the finish. Very clean tasting; I'd recommend this to a red wine lover. Buttery, slick mouthfeel. Sadly, sulfites and I don't get along, I get headaches from the sulfites added to aid the fermentation of red wine, so I haven't had a glass of red wine in years. But this beer does seem to have some red wine qualities if I recall. Smoothness is impeccable. Drying on the palate long after the sip. We're getting this beer in stock at the pub where I work, so I've found my perfect substitute if I feel like in a red wine mood. 50 lashes if I sound like a wino; I've always preferred beer, but this beer's awesome in those instances when a substitute for a wine other than wine is in order (red meats and the like...).

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Photo of SeanChouffe
4.31/5  rDev +3.9%
look: 5 | smell: 4 | taste: 4.5 | feel: 4.5 | overall: 4

A mahogany color, transparent, with copious carbonation and a full rocky head. Head retention is good and the lacing is slippery. Aroma is tart, wine-like with malt, fruity and spices. Taste has a sweet start (cherries), tart middle and a dry astringent finish. Mouthfeel is medium/full bodied and smooth with an effervescent and peppery finish.
An interesting and complex beer.

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Photo of GCBrewingCo
4.97/5  rDev +19.8%
look: 4.5 | smell: 5 | taste: 5 | feel: 5 | overall: 5

The beer poured deep amber brown with a slight haze in the chalice. The head was off white and fell slowly in fine bubble fashion to the edges of the surface to eventually coat the glass.

The aroma was complex with malty sourness, toffee and a spicy complexity. The aroma was filled with fruitiness as well.

The flavor was as promised with a caramel maltiness balanced with a slight spice and a complexity of an oud bruin sourness mixed in. Fruitiness, cherries most notably, shined through in the flavor.

The finish was dry with caramel, fruit flavors and a slight complex sour flavor lasting through the aftertaste. The body was medium.

11.2 ounce bottle. This is a beer that intrigues me and has been a longtime favorite. I think it is one of the most complex and interesting beers on the planet and rated it as such.

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Photo of putnam
4.52/5  rDev +8.9%
look: 4 | smell: 4.5 | taste: 4.5 | feel: 5 | overall: 4.5

An active, attractive, sticky, beige top over copper/mud-colored liquid.

The aromas suggest whole, over-ripe tangerine, strawberry jam, coffee, oatmeal and floor polish. Lots of candied, dried fruits and raw, sweet spices appear after it warms.
On the palate it offers meaty, chewy, buttery fat textures before uncurling notes of vanilla, oranges, braised meats and bitter tropical woods. Let's just assume this was raised in heavily, heavily toasted barrels. "Neat" say's slackie. Slackie likes the taste of heavily toasted oak barrels.

After a dry patch of B. United and Belgian beers I must say, this was a pleasant surprise!

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Photo of 99bottles
3.2/5  rDev -22.9%
look: 4 | smell: 4 | taste: 3 | feel: 3 | overall: 2.5

This beer is dark brownish red and has a small head of tan that quickly subsides to a thin lace. Taken from a goblet, the smell is very sweet and rich with hints of toffee, carmel and ginger. The taste is intense, to say the least. There are some light buttery notes which are complexed by a ton of spice, which soon subsides to leave a very strong taste of gingerbread. VERY strong. The aftertaste lingers on and on and is actually quite annoying. I couldn't detect much else, though the thick mouthfeel indicates this has some alcohol to it. I wasn't very impressed, and I couldn't have more than one even if I wanted to. Whew! The little crazy gingerbread man on the label is a telling sign of the one-dimensional liquified cookie inside.

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Photo of Crosling
3.6/5  rDev -13.3%
look: 4 | smell: 4 | taste: 3.5 | feel: 4 | overall: 3

Sampled on draft at the brewery in Esen, Belgium.


Pale to rich malts provide a buttery and caramel maltiness but a more elaborate ripe fruitiness is more prominent, providing notes of plum, banana and clove.

Rich, full of depth, yeasty as hell and full of fruit notes; mainly apple and pear.

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Photo of truthbrew
4.42/5  rDev +6.5%
look: 4 | smell: 4.5 | taste: 4.5 | feel: 5 | overall: 4

Really a wonderful brew. Mine was a slightly murky copper-brown, yeast wasn't quite settled. Fabulous malt body and deep earthy notes. Finish had a very familiar taste, but couldn't put my finger on what it was, very pleasant though. One i'd buy time and time again. Mad Brewers keep them coming!

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Photo of CRJMellor
4.35/5  rDev +4.8%
look: 4 | smell: 4 | taste: 4.5 | feel: 4.5 | overall: 4.5

Pours cloudy. thick maber with brown hints. Big thick crabonation bubbles in a dense off-white head. Leaves piles of lace on the goblet.
Aroma of caramel malt, Belgian candi malt and very spicy yeast.
Flavor of caramel, toffee, candy sugar, coriander and other spices and some grain. Slight hint of diacetyl notes and some green apple.
Mouthfeel was very sweet to start progressing to a heavily spiced and effervescent finish.
Drinkability was very nice. Great mix of malt and spice. Beautiful beer.

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Photo of Hefe
4.78/5  rDev +15.2%
look: 5 | smell: 4.5 | taste: 5 | feel: 5 | overall: 4.5

Tasted from 11.6 oz. bottle on 6/16/04

Appearance: Slightly hazy, deep brown/red coulor with a off white almost tan head that is thick and rocky and follows the beer to the bottom of the glass.

Smell: Sweet caramel malt, with subtle nuances of prune, burnt caramel, orange marmalade.

Taste: Wowsers! The flavors meld together so well that trying to distinguish them is almost like picking apart a tight weave. Sour cherry, prune, candied orange, vanilla, allspice and black pepper, earth. Finishes long but clean.

Mouthfeel: Rich and creamy, with a satisfying dryness.

Drinkability: Even as this beer warms there is no hint of the alcohol. An excellent beer for food pairing.

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Photo of faernt
4.76/5  rDev +14.7%
look: 5 | smell: 4 | taste: 5 | feel: 5 | overall: 5

My wife pan fried some filet mignons for supper tonight. She deglazed the cast iron pan with marsala then added butter and garlic and let the resultant sauce reduce. I had a Terrible chilling but then I noticed she'd made a spinach salad with tomatoes, avocados, kalamata olives, green pepper, celery and feta cheese. On top of that she prepared a mustard vinaigrette and served that with the salad. I thought the Terrible might not go with the salad so I pulled out an Oerbier from De Dolle.

Sometimes a beer is best alone and other times a pairing with food is best. The Oerbier poured a translucent molasses color and raised a head of very small bubbles which settled into what looked like a cream floating on top of the beer . It looked like the crema on top of an espresso.

The aroma of the beer was somewhat overshadowed by the food. It offered a slight spicy wine smell. The taste was amazing. It paired with the filet and the marsala sauce. It cleansed my palette and then afterward paired with all the components of the salad.

The pairing was dead on. It was a marriage. The slight tartness of the beer slipped into a spicy sweetness. It's complexity danced around the food and respected all of it. I will add to my stock of this beer. It is one of the best beers I've had. It is very drinkable and a remarkable food beer.

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Photo of Rastacouere
4.12/5  rDev -0.7%
look: 4 | smell: 4.5 | taste: 4 | feel: 4 | overall: 4

6yr old bottle. Muddy brown with initially big light brown head, myseriously fading into a 1cm foam, which sticks well. Nose is vinous with vinegar and oak-aged oud bruin suggestions. As the pour had indicated, there's plenty of yeast in there, but also a profound malt depth of apples, lactic cherry yogurt, blood oranges and a sweetness closing to milk chocolate. Appealing complexity already, but further sniffs have even more to offer with hints of earth, oak and saw dust. Medium bodied and sparkling, initially cherry/apple sweet, but balanced by more sourness than expected. Aftertaste can't hide the age of the sample, a little off-flavour of something alike cement or dirty grass distracts a bit from the enjoyment. I'm gonna try a fresher sample soon and make up conclusions on this aspect, but besides this, it is obviously a radious beer that fits my personal tastes with great class.

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Photo of JamesBerry
4.35/5  rDev +4.8%
look: 4 | smell: 4 | taste: 4.5 | feel: 4.5 | overall: 4.5

This came out of the bottle a dense reddish brown color, topped with a thick, hearty head. Its pleasing sweet aroma hints at that characteristic Belgian flavor, without giving too much away. Smooth and creamy mouthfeel with earthy lactose undertones. This is a filling beer, falling somewhere between Maudite and a stout. This waited in my fridge for at least a month or so, and now I'm asking myself why I didn't try it earlier.

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Photo of ark57
4.2/5  rDev +1.2%
look: 4 | smell: 4 | taste: 4.5 | feel: 4 | overall: 4

It pours a cloudy borwn with some reddish tinit to it and a tan head that dissipated fairly fast for me. The aroma is fruity, malty, peppery and somewhat medicinal. It has a soft, yet prickly carbonation. There is plenty of fruity sweet malts with some cherry, prune, and raisin notes and some spicy phenols. There is some bitterness that helps round out the sweetness. It finishes with some fusel alcohol and a peppery spiciness. Another great beer from a great brewery.

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De Dolle Oerbier from Brouwerij De Dolle Brouwers
92 out of 100 based on 459 ratings.